Hi, here is the last chapter for Forging Destiny. I am already working on the sequel Embracing Destiny, which will cover Harry's fourth year, but I only have about one and a half chapters and it's easier for regular updates to have at least a few more prepared, so please be patient. I will inform you through this story when I have posted the sequel.
Thanks to all of you that have followed this story and I hope you will also like the sequel once I have it ready.
It was finally time for Harry to really show Dumbledore how much his plans had failed. He was ready to sit his exams for third year. The house cup was as good as Gryffindor's thanks to them winning the last match against Hufflepuff too. The Quidditch Cup had brought the all over points up a lot. He was really glad that he had convinced Hermione to drop Divination and Muggle Studies early into the year, because she was already stressed out enough with the preparation for the other ten subjects. With her need for perfectionism she was already overdoing things. He didn't want to imagine how much she would have suffered if she would have had two more subjects. First up was Potions and he was determined to show Snape what he could do. The ass hadn't been any different in all the year compared to before even if Harry's performance in class had massively improved. Well, with the educational reform that would start next year he would have to shape up or be out of a job.
What that man called teaching was criminal. Well, the exam was easy enough with brewing strengthening solution from memory. From Snape's furious look on his face there was nothing wrong with Harry's potion. How Snape hated that the son of his enemies was this good in his class suddenly.
The next parts were Charms and Transfiguration which Harry could easily perform. He was glad that those two exams concentrated on the practical part and only had short quizzes on the theory. Having to do long written tests here would have been exhausting with the other written parts for Astronomy, History, Runes and Arithmancy. In Charms they had to perform a cheering charm on one of their classmates and in Transfiguration Professor McGonagall wanted them to transfigure a teapot into a turtle.
Hagrid had put together an assortment of creatures for his test. They had to identify a knarl within hedgehogs and identify four other creatures and give a basic summary about their traits and preferred food. It was easy Harry thought. There were salamanders, chameleons, krups and runespoors. Harry had a nice little chat with the runespoors.
The most interesting exam proved to be Defence Against the Dark Arts where Moony had put together an obstacle course with different dark creatures that had been covered in the year. The third years had to deal with redcaps, a hinkypunk, a grindylow pool and banish a boggart. Harry liked how much his favourite classes concentrated on casting spells or using their new knowledge contrary to simply answer written questions. Harry was sure after perfectly banishing his dementor boggart with a patronus followed by a riddikulus that he had got a great mark. Moony confirmed it happily when he left the trunk with the boggart.
It was the third to last day of term. The exam results were given to the students. Harry was very happy about his. He had scored 110% in his Transfiguration exam, 107% in Charms, 99% in Potions, much to Snape's annoyance he would bet, 100% in Astronomy, 90% in History of Magic, the pensieve lessons had been what enabled him to pass with that high a grade, 102% in Ancient Runes, 104% in Arithmancy and Care of Magical Creatures and an incredible 150% in Defence Against the Dark Arts. Harry was incredibly happy about his grades. He had even beaten Hermione in Transfiguration, Charms and Defence. He was overall ranked second, only one point behind Hermione who had got 100% in History and therefore got the top spot. He didn't really mind. He didn't need to be first of the year, but his overall grades were something he could proudly show his father once he got home.
Harry hung out with his new friends in all the other houses who also enjoyed the last days without work until they would return home to see their families. The research groups had decided to hand in petitions to the Ministry for creature rights, the request to get a mandatory class on wizarding traditions as even some children from wizarding families didn't know all there was to know about things in the wizarding world and one for more physical activities as one research group had found out that your magic got stronger if you exercised. Harry happily promised that he would ask his father to support the ideas.
The creature research group wanted to establish rules that forbid the punishment of house elves. That one step would help a lot. They had agreed that the elves didn't want to be freed as the bond gave them magic from their families. Some muggleborns, among them Hermione, had had problems accepting that, but the petition to make it illegal to punish them with curses or other hurtful ways was a major step in the right direction. Additionally over time the elves would have to be forbidden to punish themselves if they thought that they did something wrong. This would take time as it was ingrained in most house elves. Even Dobby after he had been freed had had problems with that. He sometimes when Sirius asked him to talk about the secrets of the Malfoys had to fight the urge to punish himself.
The traditions group had come up with many wizarding celebrations that weren't really celebrated anymore. Like Walpurgis, Yule, Beltane and Samhain. They wanted to learn more about those traditions and celebrate them at Hogwarts. Beltane was customary a huge feast to celebrate spring and the reawakening of the world around. While some customs were not suited for children, for the older ones it would be important to know about the rituals that could strengthen their magic, even if some of them were based on sex. In older times the magic of sex had been used more freely. But the group agreed that only those in sixth and seventh year needed to know more about those. They just thought that because of some stupid rules that society thought of being prudent, it hadn't to be the only right way.
Harry blushed when one of the sixth year Slytherin girls told them all about what they had found out. If a couple that was in love performed a certain ritual and united at Beltane their magic would be increased by a fourth. That was incredible. And what would be wrong if a couple in love did so? You couldn't get the effect if one partner forced the other into it. So there wasn't the fear of abuse. But the example showed how much knowledge had been forgotten and needed to be recollected. The students at Hogwarts were more than willed to do the first step in that direction and once again get their school to be the top educational institution in the world.
Dumbledore wanted to destroy something. Best of all Sirius Black. Thanks to that man all his carefully laid plans were destroyed. Harry Potter was free of his influence. The castle itself protected him and prevented that he could read his mind. He had tried and got a horrible headache. Harry excelled at his studies and was about to unite the four houses. Research groups had written out reports on certain topics from house elves to wizarding traditions. They would try to get the Ministry to change the ways the wizarding world was run. And with Sirius at the top there was a big chance that they would succeed. How didn't he know about those groups? He should know everything that was going on at Hogwarts as the headmaster, but recently the castle didn't tell him what he wanted to know anymore. It was as if something was blocking the information flow and the only good explanation was Harry's heir status.
The Ministry was cleaning up the mess that a decade under Bagnold and Fudge had caused; well, mostly it was Fudge's fault, but the idiot was such an easily influenced fool that he had allowed him to become Minister. Sirius was very efficient in combination with Amelia and Rufus. On top of that JWT had got hold in Britain and their products were hits with the population that hadn't known what kind of things could be created by combining muggle ideas with magic to get them to work. And again it had been Sirius who had helped them get started. Decades of work destroyed by one man that was a nuisance. He had intentionally sent the man to Azkaban.
He would have thwarted the plans for Harry by raising the boy to be confident as was proven now. With the Potter and Black fortunes at his disposal he could have done some things way earlier and all chances for him, Albus Dumbledore to get into his rightful position would have been destroyed. Now they were close to being destroyed. He had lost a lot of political clout. Thankfully so far he had got through the event fairly unscathed. Those that were dealt major blows were Umbridge, Malfoy, Fudge, the whole dark faction and those that had hidden under the corruption and incompetence of the Ministry. Many had been sacked and many arrested. This would lead to capable younger witches and wizards rising into the newly opened positions.
Sirius had always been a revolutionary. That was why he had tried to get the man loyal to him and had overlooked many things when he had been a boy at Hogwarts. Sadly that hadn't worked out as he had intended. Sirius had seen that you couldn't win a war if you were only allowed to stun your opponents. While he despised the dark arts, he wasn't above using a bone breaking curse to permanently take an opponent out of a fight. Or a cutting curse to a wand hand. Sirius had wanted to break the encrusted structures open and James Potter had been right at his side.
When the opportunity to get rid of Sirius for goo,d thanks to the grief fuelled bad decision of the normally highly intelligent man, he had taken it. Sirius Black couldn't be controlled. And a Harry Potter, the beacon of the light, that couldn't be controlled by Albus Dumbledore couldn't be allowed to happen. Things had gone to plan in Harry's first two years at Hogwarts, but then Sirius broke out of Azkaban, a feat that he had thought to be impossible for anybody besides him, and interfered again. He blood adopted Harry and effectively removed all the blocks and influence that he had placed on the boy. Now he needed to collect the shards and see what he could save. He knew that Sirius had only started his revolution. But if he thought that he, the rightful ruler of Wizarding Britain, Albus Dumbledore, would simply step down, he was dead wrong.
And finished. I hope you liked the conclusion of this story. Watch out for the sequel I guess in about one or two months I should be ready to post at least one chapter a month. More I won't promise as I dont know how much time to write I have with my other stories also going on.