In this World and the Next

Disclaimer: Jo Rowling's is a professional author, I own nothing but my ideas.

Chapter 2

The time they spent snuggling and comforting one another was enjoyable and provided them with much needed reassurance, but they were rudely returned to their current reality by a ferret trying to gain access to their compartment.

Harry tensed ready for battle but Hermione's kisses drove all other thoughts from his mind, when she decided to come up for air the ferret and his handlers were long gone.

"It's time to start figuring what we want to achieve here love, if you want to walk into Hogwarts, tell Dumbledore to go screw himself and come straight home with me then I'll be right by your side, but I think we have to decide now."

Her kisses this time were a lot softer, "I know you inside out Harry Potter, you have scars on your soul that we have been given a chance to heal. Sirius is alive, as is Cedric, Remus, Tonks, her father and many more, we can make sure they all stay that way."

Harry held her tight, "I'm sorry love but I can't go through those seven years again, Ron is a dead man walking and nothing you can say will change that. Umbridge, Malfoy and Percy were on the panel that ordered that dementor to feed on you while Molly was the driving force behind the charges, there can be no mercy for them either."

"I don't think they deserve any, they didn't show much in the way of mercy to us! All I'm saying is we need to set some goals and those will do for starters, are we going to take down Voldemort?"

"There is no way I could leave you and stand there while the bastard hits me with an Arvada Kedavra, that's just not happening. We could destroy the horcruxes and keep our options open, the day I gave you that ring I was intending for the four of us to disappear to the Black island off the coast of Bermuda, that still sounds appealing to me, let the rest of them drown in the ocean of shit entirely of their own making."

"That sounds wonderful to me as well but at this point in time we don't have access to Black island, unless we get Sirius out of Azkaban. The reason I stopped you from attacking Malfoy is that his father has the diary, we know what he's eventually going to do with it but not until next summer. We could just ambush them that day in Diagon Alley and take the bloody thing, I have no wish to be petrified or see you fighting that bloody Basilisk to save a Weasley."

"I see what you mean love, me slaughtering the ferret on the train might lose us the diary, though I'm wondering if that might not be a fair exchange?"

"You'll get no argument from me, it all depends on our goals' Harry, if we're going to let Voldemort take over the country then we can throw Malfoy off the astronomy tower tonight."

"I can't make up my mind whether to feed Ron to Fluffy or lock him in the bathroom with the troll, he and Myrtle keeping each other company in a toilet u-bend for the next millennium sounds like a just punishment to me."

"Why settle for just the one, couldn't we let the troll work him over and then feed the leftovers to Fluffy? I think we need to decide on Voldemort and everything else will follow from there, we also have to be careful not to appear too knowledgeable and try to stay out of the spotlight, though I understand that will be difficult for the boy who lived!"

Harry kissed her again, "Well my new philosophy is pretty simple, I trust no one but you and that's the way it's going to stay, we're not two naïve kids this time and anyone treating us as such is in for a rude awakening. Let's just keep an eye on how the 'adults' react around us and see if we can spot who's playing games. Our biggest problem may be that I don't think I can survive without you to cuddle into every night, you Miss Granger are addictive and I can safely say I'm hooked!" This ended any conversation as Hermione showed her appreciation of that comment, after all the man of her dreams had asked her to marry him and she was focusing on that to blot out the earlier incident.

The only time their door was opened the entire trip was to buy sweets from the trolley lady, Harry had just left the Dursleys and as usual was famished. The occupants of the train appeared more concerned with the nonappearance of any Weasleys than the two first years who sat cuddling each other the entire journey.

Leaving the train to the familiar sound of Hagrid calling for the first years tugged on their heartstrings, it was one thing to talk about letting Voldemort take over Britain, seeing Neville standing alone, too shy to ask anyone about sharing a boat, was a whole different matter.

Both headed straight for him, "Hi there, want to share a boat with us?" Hermione asked.

Neville seemed more relieved than anything else and muttered 'sure' before the three of them sat in the little craft and began chatting as it slowly took them to their new life. "I'm Hermione and this is Harry, we're new at this magic malarkey and, although we've both done lots of reading, we're hoping that someone can take us under their wing and help us out."

This was more than anyone had said to Neville since his Grandmother put him on the train, "I'm Neville, are you both muggle born?"

"Hermione is and I might as well be, didn't know about magic until my eleventh birthday. Have you grown up with it or are you just like us?"

"No I come from a magical family though they weren't sure if I was going to be magical, to be honest I'm still not convinced I should be here."

The insecurities and lack of any self-esteem were plainly visible in his body language, it was hard to believe this was the same boy who would charge at Voldemort and destroy the final horcrux, "We've heard stories about these houses Neville, which one do you think fit's you?"

"I'll just be happy if any of them take me."

"Oh you're a definite Gryffindor!" the boy's eyes nearly popped out his head at Hermione's declaration, "You don't think you shouldn't be here yet you're still going ahead, that says Gryffindor courage to me."

"My Grandmother put me on the train and I was too scared to get back off!"

Harry placed his hand on the frightened boy's shoulder, "Neville if you stride up to that stool, place the sorting hat on your head and demand to be in Gryffindor the hat will be forced to place you there, that's true Gryffindor courage."

They could see him thinking about it as he kept the conversation going, "What houses are you hoping for?"

They looked towards each other, only now were the implications beginning to dawn on them, place Harry, Ron and Peter Pettigrew in the same dorm and there would be at least one murder done. "We're not sure Neville, I think we're both sneaky enough for Slytherin while loyal as any Hufflepuff."

"Hermione here is scarily brilliant and would fit right into Ravenclaw."

"While Harry here is Gryffindor enough to stick his wand up a troll's nose while saving a friend. One thing's for sure, we'll be in the same house or we'll be home for supper!" Neville had never heard anyone speak with such confidence in his life.

Harry had his arm around her shoulders to show his agreement about them being together, Neville had to ask, "Are you a couple?"

Harry's smile was a beacon on the dark water, "Hermione is my best friend and my girlfriend." She placed her hand on Harry's cheek and Neville's reaction almost overturned their boat.

"I thought you said you were muggles, where did you get that?" indicating Hermione's ring.

"Harry gave it to me, I think it's beautiful."

Neville couldn't take his eyes off it, "Oh it's beautiful, it's also an old family wedding ring, when the head of an old family places that ring on a girl's finger and she accepts it, that couple are then married!"

Harry shook his head, "See Neville that's why we need you around, I give my girl a ring and now this lovely lady's my wife, you help us with this magical stuff and we'll give you a hand with lessons and homework."

Neville was trying to understand this couple but had nothing to compare them with, perhaps there was nothing to compare them with? "For this marriage to be binding you would have to be the head of an old family and Hermione would need to want to marry you, this is crazy as you're both eleven!"

"Neville my name is Harry Potter and this lovely young lady has been my best friend for years, I can't think of anything that would please me more than having her as Hermione Potter. I found this ring in my vault and immediately thought of Miss Granger here so maybe you can understand why we're not upset about this."

"You're Harry Potter? Malfoy was all over the train looking for you!"

"It's just Harry Neville, is Malfoy the little blond git?"

"Eh Harry, if this is true then there might be a bit of a commotion when they read the names out in the great hall, Mr and Mrs Potter could bring the roof down."

All chat stopped as Hogwarts came into view, Harry and Hermione may have spent six years living in the castle but the view was still spectacular enough to take your breath away.

They were out the boats and McGonagall had just given them her 'your house is your family speech' when Malfoy made his move, she had hardly left the entrance hall when the blond shoved Neville out his way and stuck his manicured hand out to Harry, "My name is Malfoy, Draco Malfoy. You'll soon find out some wizarding families are much better than others, Potter. You don't want to go making friends with the wrong sort, I can help you there!"

Harry glanced at the offered hand and tried to hold his temper, "Where did you get the idea that I would need an arrogant little albino prick like you as my social secretary? You throw the name Malfoy around like it's supposed to mean something well I tell you what it means to me, your father didn't have the guts or conviction to stand up for his beliefs and used his money to help lie his way out of a prison sentence. Your aunt is a psychopath who's currently rotting her arse off in Azkaban and you have the audacity to stand there and propose to tell me which wizarding families are better than others? Why don't you take dumb and dumber here and run crying to daddy!"

Draco was incensed, didn't Potter know who he was? "Potter when my father hears of this…"

Harry was right in Draco's face, "He will do the exact same as his son and wet himself, I dealt with his master when I was a baby so why do you think I would be afraid of the servant now?"

Draco tried to return Harry's stare but the whine in his voice told all the first years who was winning this contest, "The Malfoys are nobody's servants."

"You keep telling yourself that while everyone else can imagine your father down on his knees kissing the hem of Voldemort's robes."

The screams from Harry saying the name were covered by the appearance of the Hogwarts ghosts, McGonagall returned before Malfoy could conjure a witty reply so he sulked away muttering threats of retribution.

Harry grabbed Neville and pulled him back to his side, "Don't let that arsehole push you around Neville, you're worth twelve of Malfoy."

Minerva was about to reprimand the boy for his use of language until she realised what he was doing and decided not to hear the remark, it would appear that Mr Potter had already made a friend and the way Augusta coddled Neville this might be the making of the lad. She led the new first years into the great hall to be sorted.

Harry and Hermione were too busy wondering how long it would take the redheads to get here that the sorting hat had finished its song and Hannah Abbot was heading to the Hufflepuff table before they knew what was happening.

When McGonagall called for Daphne Greengrass and Hermione was still standing there, the couple understood that any attempt at staying out of the spotlight was now about as likely as Umbridge making a nude calendar. Harry knew the magical world had its quirks and foibles but couldn't imagine there would be much demand for an 'amorous amphibians' publication.

"Neville things are about to get very messy, just remember you're our first magical friend and don't worry about any shit that happens around us. We can take care of ourselves, and our friends."

When his name was called and still no mention of Granger, Neville understood what Harry was saying, this revelation would be the talk of the castle, no the whole of magical Britain would go berserk at the news the-boy-who-lived was married, and to a muggle born to boot!

Neville squared his shoulders, "I'll keep you guys seats at the Gryffindor table!" he marched up to the stool and the sorting hat was on his head for less than thirty seconds before it shouted "Gryffindor!" His beaming smile towards Harry and Hermione let them know they had just made a friend for life.

Minerva had been staring at the next entry on her list wishing she didn't have to read it out loud, her gaze shifted to the two children who were standing holding hands and wished there was something that could be done to avoid the maelstrom that was about to descend upon them. She hoped Albus choked on his infernal lemon drops for forcing Harry to grow up outside their world, "Mr and Mrs Harry Potter!"

Minerva didn't think the dark lord turning up in a tutu could have drawn anymore attention than the young couple walking hand in hand towards her, they squeezed together on the stool as the hat expanded to fit over both their heads.

"Mr and Mrs Potter, let me be the first to offer my congratulations on your recent nuptials and say welcome back!"

"Er, thanks I think, can anyone else hear us?"

"Only the three of us are privy to what is said during your sorting Mr Potter."

That was good enough for Hermione who had a load of questions needing answered, "You know we came back in time, have you any idea how that happened?"

"A combination of effects Mrs Potter, can you remember what you said to your husband when he placed the Potter ring on your finger?"

"Of course I can, I'm hardly likely to forget that! I said I'll love you forever Harry, in this world and the next." A semblance of understanding began to percolate at the back of Hermione's mind.

"As usual Mrs Potter you are correct, your husband used similar words when he proposed creating an amazingly strong bond of marriage. When they then used the same dementor for both of you, your souls joined with such force the creature was blasted to pieces, and so I might add were most of the room's occupants."

"That doesn't explain what we're doing back here though," said Harry.

They could sense something that felt like sorrow emanating from the ancient magical artifact, "You both gave everything you had to give in the defeat of evil and were then betrayed by a magical community that didn't deserve you. You are the chosen one Mr Potter but misguided people stopped you reaching your full potential, with this young lady at your side our world could have been dragged into the new millennium. Instead, an event took place that saw you both flee the country and the scum clawed, lied and cheated their way back to the top unopposed, your work was only just beginning with the defeat of Riddle but of course you chose to support the love of your life."

Hermione felt this tattered old piece of cloth was insinuating that this whole mess was her fault, she'd had enough of being pushed around. "Again that doesn't explain why we're back here, could you please just answer the question, we had enough of Dumbledore playing games and not giving us the answers to last us two lifetimes!"

"The powers that be decided to send you back with your memories and powers intact, they understand that you'll be looking to apply some retribution but now see the necessity for that. For our world to survive the stupidity that is blood purity must be abolished, we need a revolution and you two have been elected to be its leaders."

"Shit! I never asked for, nor wanted any of this. Don't we get a choice?"

"Of course you do Mr Potter, but from young Mr Longbottom's demands to be placed in Gryffindor I would say you have already made it. You are both intrinsically good people who will not hesitate to make the difficult choices, giving you back your lives and each other was the least that could be done for you. As Hermione is Mrs Potter, married to the head of the Potter family, that ring would automatically appear on her finger, signifying her unquestionable and unchangeable status to everyone in our world."

Calling her Mrs Potter placated Hermione a little, for now. "Ok that's better than anything we've been able to come up with so far but shouldn't you get on with the sorting, we've been here ages." Hermione could have sworn the hat chuckled.

"Very little time has actually passed, communicating by this method is considerably faster, am I to assume its Gryffindor once again for both of you?"

"Only if you sort Ron Weasley somewhere else," Harry growled.

"Unfortunately I don't think I can, he has no loyalty which rules out Hufflepuff, let's just say his exclusion from Ravenclaw's a given while he has ambition enough for Slytherin there is no guile there."

Hermione wasn't going to stand for that, "Oh he managed to pull the wool over our eyes for all those years, I think he would fit right in there."

"I could offer you Ravenclaw?"

"With Cho and Marietta, no chance!"


Harry was the one who scuppered this choice, "Justin and Ernie are worse than the Creevey brothers, at least I can ignore them."

"Well then I am rather at a loss…"


"I'm sorry Mrs Potter I don't understand, that's not a house."

"Yes but my house is there, I say we get the fuck out of this place tonight and the country by next week. At least we'll live to see twenty."

Harry didn't need the use of language to know that Hermione's patience had finally snapped, apparently the sorting hat had cottoned on too because it suddenly shouted "Gryffindor married quarters!" before she could carry out her very real threat.

"What about Ron?" Harry asked before the hat could be removed.

"He shall be placed elsewhere."

Hermione had just enough time to say, "Place Luna in Gryffindor next year" before McGonagall lifted the battered old hat off their heads.

The sorting hat's confirmation that they were married saw them greeted with total silence as they made their way over to sit beside Neville, as he congratulated his new friends the spell was broken when McGonagall announced the next name to be sorted.

The couple were then bombarded with questions, which they politely ignored in favour of watching the staff's reaction while chatting to Neville. Harry felt no pain in his head when Quirrell turned around so the chances were good his scar was just that, Snape's permanent scowl made it difficult to get a read on him while the normally serene Dumbledore appeared as if he'd swallowed a wasp. He had to be nudged when the sorting was over and just signalled for the feast to begin, the old wizard obviously had a lot on his mind.

Harry reckoned he would be paying a visit to the headmaster's office sooner rather than later, Dumbledore would be disappointed.

They had just finished their meal, Harry trying not to eat too much because his stomach wasn't used to it, when the headmaster stood and gave his beginning of term announcements. Once again they were reminded that the forbidden forest was in fact just that, and again the third floor corridor was deadly.

They found themselves being escorted by McGonagall in the direction of Gryffindor tower, being a prefect down and having a married couple in her house led to her taking responsibility. Harry wasn't sure if it was just for a chance to question them prior to Dumbledore's summons, they were adopting the headmaster's style of not telling lies but definitely not supplying the entire truth.

"Where did you two meet?"

"We met on our first day of school, we've been best friends for years."

"When did you get married?"

"Today on the train apparently."

This caused Minerva to do a double take before Harry continued, "We had intended to get married in the future but the ring I gave her means we were married today."

"How did you get a hold of that ring?"

Harry faked a look of puzzlement, "It's a Potter family ring, I'm head of the Potter family by being the only one left, why shouldn't I have my ancestor's ring to give my girl?"

McGonagall was now the one puzzled, "Mr Potter, where did you hear all this?"

"Our new friend Neville told us, why wasn't I supposed to know my rights?"

They had reached the Gryffindor portrait hole so she was spared from answering, after telling the Potters the password she led the pair further down the corridor until stopping at a suit of armour standing in a recess. "Charles we have two for the married quarters, you need to set a password that will allow you entry."

Quick as a flash Hermione offered "Australia!" McGonagall's quizzical expression prompted an explanation, "My family are considering moving there, Harry and I have already started researching magical schools to decide what part of the country suits us best. Some of them look fantastic and for us a warm Australian beach will beat a drafty old Scottish castle every time."

'Charles' stood aside, revealing a hidden door, they entered what appeared a cosy one bedroom flat with its own large bedroom, sitting area, bathroom / shower and compact kitchen, they could be quit comfortable here.

Minerva's mind was still on the password though, "Mr Potter would you really move to Australia? Your parents would have wanted you here."

"Professor, my entire life I have been told my parents were no-good lazy drunks who died in a car crash, you saying they would have wanted me to attend here means nothing to me."

McGonagall couldn't believe what she was hearing, "James and Lily Potter were two of the kindest and bravest people I've ever met, they are heroes in our world!"

"Yet their son ended up living in a cupboard, treated no better than a slave. If that's how you treat your heroes professor, then maybe you can understand why Australia appears so attractive an option to us."

Minerva had no answer, she'd told Dumbledore that night he was making a mistake leaving Harry there and now it would appear they could end up paying for it. Harry Potter leaving Hogwarts to attend another school would be a hammerblow to the prestige of Hogwarts and its headmaster. Albus wanted to talk to the boy tonight but she now thought that would be another huge mistake, although they appeared quite open she could sense that their answers were carefully considered before being given, not something she was used to with first year students.

Minerva had been asked by Albus to enquire if Harry had seen the Weasleys, she thought this was a strange request but then Albus wasn't exactly what you would consider normal.

"We seem to be missing a few students, they all have distinctive red hair, did you by any chance spot them in the station?"

"Is their mother a wee fat woman with an extremely loud voice and obnoxious bossy attitude?"

Minerva wasn't sure how to reply to that, "I've never heard her described that way before but it could possibly be, why, did you see them?"

"Well this woman in Kings Cross was shouting about muggles and platform nine and three quarters, she then grabbed me and started to drag me away. In school we're taught how to deal with that, you scream blue murder for help, so that's what I did!"

Minerva was almost afraid to ask, "What happened then?"

"Last I saw of the nutters, they were being led away in handcuffs by the police, I left to get on the train and find Hermione."

This was not how she envisaged her day turning out when she got up this morning, but it wasn't finished yet, Mrs Potter had one last shock for her.

"Professor as our head of house we are required to inform you if we leave the school, according to 'Hogwarts a History' as married couple this is our right. It is our intention to leave after our last class on Friday to spend the weekend with my parents."

Minerva could only nod, "Please give me that in writing after you receive your timetables tomorrow, I know this whole marriage thing must come as a bit of a shock, if there is anything I can help you with please don't be afraid to ask."

Minerva was the one in shock at Hermione's saucy answer, "Professor, this is our wedding night and I think we'll manage fine without any help."

The stern professor was almost blushing as she left them alone, Harry was gobsmacked, "Hermione Jane Potter, what was that all about? You know we're both eleven and that wont be happening for a while yet."

She kissed her husband, "Harry if we want to be taken seriously it starts now, what we do is our business but I intend to remind them we are married at every opportunity. If we behave like children, then that's the way we will be treated, they're certain to start leading us in the direction they want us to go, claiming as adults they know best but we both know they don't."

"Yeah but we're still too young for that, right?"

Hermione's smile was a beautiful thing that Harry didn't think he would ever tire of seeing, "Love I understand we have to grow into our bodies, I even have my big teeth back, but between the tent and our time in Australia we've lived together for about a year and a half so this should be no different. I expect my husband to kiss me goodnight and to wake in his arms every morning, the other stuff will sort itself out with time."

Harry held her closer, "Just remember that even as an eighteen year old I was still clueless, look how long it took me to ask for your hand, please hit me with a beater's bat if you need to draw my attention to something I should be doing. I'm so lucky to have you and never want to disappoint my beautiful wife."

This earned him another kiss, "Mr Potter you're doing just fine, when do you think the redheads will get here?"

"I don't know but you can guarantee they'll be mad, we better be ready for anything."


Molly Weasley wasn't mad, she passed mad a long, long time ago, her legendary temper had erupted but the police officers paid it not the slightest notice, with her hands cuffed behind her back and no wand, Molly was powerless to do anything but rant. That rant was the reason she'd spent the rest of the day in a cell, had she been calm and explained the incident away as a misunderstanding, the whole family would have been out of there within the first hour.

Instead, she had screamed like a banshee, promising retribution on all who were involved, and hardened the attitude of the police officers who began to dig deeper and found nothing. They had no records of the entire family, no way to contact this supposed husband who apparently worked in some capacity for the government. Combined with no records of any kind existing for the five minors apparently in her care, this set professional alarm bells ringing in the police station as other agencies were drafted in to assist.

September the first is one of the busiest days on the magical world's calendar so nothing was picked up as being wrong until Albus floo-called Arthur Weasley, this finally set the ministry wheels in motion. The obliviators were kept very busy as all record of Molly Weasley ever being in the police station had to be erased as well as quite a few memories, then it was off to child care services to collect the kids. Even the animals had been taken to a rescue centre but worst of all was Ron, Molly was in tears as she looked on at what these bloody muggle torturers had done to her boy. Harry would be delighted to discover that he had indeed broken Ron's jaw, his mother found him in a hospital bed, recovering from having his jaw surgically wired.

The family looked on in disbelief, did the muggles think Ron was a werewolf or vampire who would to bite to treat him this way? Wiping out the hospital records and some more memories was then followed by a trip to St Mungo's to have Ron unwired, the poor boy would have starved to death in a few days!

Thus it was that Molly's fuse was even shorter than normal as she led her brood into Hogwarts next morning, on entering the great hall her eyes immediately scanned the room before locking onto her target. That little shit was going to get a personal howler delivered from a distance of six inches while she held him by the throat, Molly rushed straight at him.

The Potters were sitting eating their breakfast while discussing the timetables McGonagall had just handed them, as the conversation began to die around the pair, Hermione glanced up just as Molly was about to make a grab for Harry.

How she kept that curse to a 'petrificus totalus' she would never know, the temptation to hit the bitch with a 'reducto' was almost overpowering. As it was, a petrified Molly crashed into the table where Harry had just been sitting, face first into his half-eaten porridge.

Percy Weasley was one angry young man, he'd spent the entire time since receiving his badge dreaming of strolling through these hallowed halls proudly displaying to the school that he was a prefect. Instead, he missed the feast, sorting and leading the first year Gryffindors to their new home. Now a first year had just cursed his mother, Percy drew his wand ready to extract some retribution. Unfortunately for Percy Hermione's wand was already in her hand and he found himself in the same predicament as his mother, without the aid of porridge to break his fall.

Harry had moved just as fast as his wife, while petrified Molly was falling past him, Harry's wand was in his hand, he gave the twins time to reach for their wands before casting the same curse as Hermione. He switched his attention to Ron and wasn't sure if the boy was more upset about his mother being cursed or the porridge being wasted, not knowing any magic, he let out a roar and charged at Hermione.

Harry's wand tracked his progress but he really wanted Hermione to deal with this, she did! At first it appeared as if she's choked but when Ron was the correct distance away she exploded into action as her right foot connected with excruciating force and painful accuracy on her attacker's groin.

Ron's forward momentum was stopped from the waist down but his upper body was still going forward, bending him over and giving Hermione the perfect target, with a cry of "BASTARD!" her knee crunched his nose. Ron landed in a groaning heap at Hermione's feet as her wand now pointed at the little sister. "Are you staying out of this or do we need to deal with you as well?"

Ginny was brought along because her dad had to go to work and the girl was excited, she was going to see Hogwarts. Seconds after she had admired the ceiling her family were on the floor and she had the terrifying sight of an enraged brown haired girl pointing her wand at poor little Ginny Weasley. She could only shake her head as her voice wouldn't work.

Harry had been afraid there for a second that Hermione was going to let Ron reach her, had he laid hands on his wife nothing in this hall would have been able to move quick enough to stop Harry killing him. Hermione was standing just that bit straighter after inflicting some punishment on the prick, she'd obviously decided to deal with him physically as that was what she needed to gain that bit of self-respect back. With a wand in her hand Hermione was always going to make mincemeat of Ron Weasley, in this or any other time, now she knew that physically he wasn't going to defeat her either.

Snape's expression was almost gleeful as he shouted from the Slytherin table, "Twenty points each from Gryffindor and detention every night this week, that also means you lose your privileges for the coming weekend."

McGonagall was also still handing out timetables and it was to her Hermione turned, "Who'e he and can he do that?"

"That is Professor Snape, head of Slytherin and I'm afraid he can."

"So this woman and her family attack us and we get punished for defending ourselves?"

McGonagall could only answer, "You should have let a professor deal with the situation."

"I'm sorry professor but I don't trust any of the staff in here to do that, I will not stand back and watch my husband attacked while we wait to see if a member of staff can be bothered to intervenes. Had the action for defence been as quick as the reaction to hand out punishment we would not be having this conversation, you have forced our hand." She turned to Harry, "Do we need anything from the room?"

Harry thought about it, "We've read all the books, won't need parchment, quills or school uniforms again so I would reckon just our jackets. You know you've been dying to try that spell!"

Hermione held up her wand, "Accio Mr and Mrs Potter's jackets."

The entire hall were riveted by the scene playing out in front of them though some of the older ones were now scoffing at Hermione attempting a summoning charm, that was until two jackets flew into the hall.

Minerva feared she knew the answer but had to ask, "Mr and Mrs Potter, can I ask what you are doing?"

Hermione had it all figured out, "We'll take a walk to Hogsmead, should be able to find a public floo there that will allow us to reach the Leaky Cauldron, from there it's a tube and taxi back home! This morning's incident proves beyond doubt we were both lied to, if this is the best magical school then I pity the rest. That poorly disguised attempt to deny us our rights before we've even finished breakfast on our first morning has indicated what we can expect if we stay here, especially since neither our head of house nor the headmaster has spoken a word in our defence."

Albus was now dragged into this, he'd been angry with what Minerva had told him last night, as well as her refusal to bring Harry to his office, he was pleased that his head of Slytherin had cleverly negated their plans for a weekend away from Hogwarts only for the whole thing to blow up in his face. "I'm afraid we can't allow you just to walk out of here, as headmaster I act 'in loco parentis' while you are in Hogwarts and don't think this action is in your best interests."

Hermione's sweet smile belied the power in her words, "That is of course correct headmaster but you must also know our marriage negates that clause, or were you just hoping we didn't know that fact. Harry is my husband and head of House therefore 'in loco parentis' doesn't apply here."

Albus tried again, certain he would be successful this time. "Mr Potter wouldn't you rather be at Hogwarts than living with your aunt and uncle?"

Harry couldn't believe his luck, "Oh so you are aware of my living conditions there? I have no intention of returning to that house ever again and will be contacting the ministry to find out why I was left on their doorstep in the first place. If that's how the magical world deals with orphans, then I want nothing to do with it or Hogwarts."

That last statement could be very bad for Albus, he didn't want events of that night looked into too closely and needed the boy staying in Privet Drive. That blasted ring was some of the oldest and most powerful magic their world possessed, even killing the girl wouldn't alter Harry's status as head of house. "Mr Potter, should you leave Hogwarts this way, it could mean the snapping of your wand and…"

Albus never got to say any more as the crack of the boy's wand breaking silenced him, Harry threw the broken wand onto the floor and offered his arm to Hermione, "Ready to go home Mrs Potter? You were right we should never have agreed to come here in the first place, the schools abroad look so much better. We'll keep in touch Neville."

Neville was forced to concede that Harry wasn't kidding when he said they could take care of themselves, they'd taken down five Weasleys in about ten seconds.

Ginny Weasley watched as her dreams crashed to the floor even quicker than her family, Harry left with Mrs Potter on his arm, and Harry Potter's broken wand had landed at her feet, as if to emphasise she would never now marry the boy-who-lived.

A silent and stunned great hall watched as the young couple walked out the doors, the only audible sound was a mixture of crying and groans of pain coming from the semi-conscious Ron Weasley.

A/N Thanks for reading

I will no longer be indicating which story I will update next, since it's not until I sit at my laptop and begin typing that I know for sure. Updates will still be weekly though.

As Scotland is currently gripped by its worse winter for more than half a century, with the mercury not being above freezing for about a month and getting down to below minus twenty, the temptation to write about sunshine, beaches and palm trees is pretty strong.

My thanks to Alix33 for taking the time to correct my many mistakes in this chapter