HpHr story 1
*Harry only saves her from the troll
*Harry gets invited to her house for Christmas/end of the year (any year)
A/N Okay, so I am not a Ron,Ginny, Percy, or Molly fan. That should become obvious as the story goes on. I am a HUGE H/Hr fan, again, obvious. As to Dumbledore... Well... I don't mind him until the third book. I think the movies had a big part to do with that, but I think, aside from a few instances, that most people would agree that he wasn't really deserving of bashing until the forth book. Hope you enjoy!
October 31st 1991
The Great Hall
The Halloween Feast
Harry sat next to Ron, enjoying the many different varieties of food that the kitchens had today. He didn't know where it came from, but whoever made the feast sure went all out! The floating carved pumpkins added to the cool factor, making the whole feast seem like one big Halloween Party. There was one nagging thing in his mind though, a comment that Lavender Brown made to Dean Thomas, just after the feast started. "Been crying in the 2nd floor bathroom since Charms, last I heard. We couldn't even get her to come to the feast after what the red-headed git said..." Harry had a pretty good guess as to who Lavender was talking about. He knew that Ron had gone too far today, when he insulted Hermione. It reminded him all to much of his own friendless youth. Dudley had made sure Harry never had any friends, and Ron reminded him all to much of his obese whale of a cousin when he had said that,
So although he had disagreed with Ron, he never got a chance to confront him about it as Hermione had just bowled past them crying, apparently headed for the bathroom. Harry felt terrible, and promised himself that he would make it up to her. Come to think of it, he didn't even know why he hung around with Ron anyway, the guy had no social skills, was rude constantly, and not bright at all. Hermione would be a much better friend, even if just so he could have a conversation that didn't involve quidditch, chess, or begging for homework help. Although there were other reasons too, obviously, just that those were good enough reasons to defend her from Ron next time he got too intense.
Suddenly his train of thought was derailed as the Great Hall doors opened with a loud "BANG!" Running into the middle of the Hall was professor Quirrel, who stopped in the middle of the Hall, panting, and shouted "TROLL! Troll in the Dungeon! Thought you ought to know..." and collapsed in a dead faint.
Panic ensued, the house tables all scrambling over each other to try to run for the still open doors, when the Headmaster sent off 3 loud blasts with his wand, restoring a modicum of order. "Thank you," he said in a loud voice. "Prefects, please escort your students to the dormitories while the teachers and I head to the dungeon to settle this matter. Luckily, the dungeons are particularly hard to escape." He then ushered the teachers into an antechamber, no doubt to formulate a plan. Harry could see all this, as he along with some of the other first years, had been able to grab a seat near the head table. Unfortunately, this meant that they were among the last students out.
But just as Harry was leaving, a thought struck him. Hermione didn't know about the troll! What if she was wandering and accidentally stumbled across it? The headmaster said it should still be in the dungeon, and the second floor girls bathroom was only a short way away, so he would go and let her know what was going on, so she could come back to the common room, and hopefully he would be able to apologize for not standing up for her earlier. Maybe Ron could come too, if he had seen what kind of effect he had on her that made her cry for hours in a bathroom. So he pulled Ron aside and told him, "Ron, I just thought of something, Hermione doesn't know about the troll!"
Ron looked at him incredulously. "So? If little miss Know-it-all can't handle herself far be it from me to correct her. I mean, she is so obviously right about everything, what do you care anyway?"
Harry couldn't believe this. Ron was this thick? How could he not have seen this. Harry straightened himself, a cold fire burning in his emerald eyes, anger pouring out in waves. For the first time in his life, Harry was furious.
"I care Ron, because that is another student. Another person. One you see fit to pick on and bully any way you can every time you can. Give it a rest would you? All the girl ever tries to do is help and you just get mad because she can do it and you can't. Get over your bloody jealousy already, I'm gonna go find her. You just get back to the common room." And with that Harry left his former friend looking at his back, mouth open in shock.
Harry made his way up one flight of stairs, but as he reached the landing, something felt off. He couldn't place his finger on it, but... there was something... Odd. He made his way toward the bathrooms and the feeling increased. It was sorta like the feeling he got whenever he knew he was in trouble with his uncle or his cousin and his gang were about to go Harry Hunting. It was the feeling of being prey. But that didn't make sense the troll was supposed to be in the... A shrill feminine scream pierced the air and a loud grunt was heard in response. Harry ran the last few meters to the girls bathroom, flung open the door and almost fell over in shock over what he was faced with.
A large troll, knobbly callused gray skin, head too small for it's body, large nose and small eyes was looking at the stalls against the wall, a few of which had been broken to no more than splinters by the giant club in its hand. Another scream pierced the air, and Harry found the source, Hermione was semi-buried under a small pile of rubble, trying to escape as the troll looked for the girl he could smell somewhere in the room. Harry unfroze, fear for Hermione overcoming his fear of the troll.
"Hey! Ugly!" Harry shouted as he drew out his wand and started throwing pieces of the stall at the troll. He didn't know very many spells, and it looked like not much would pierce the skin on that thing, but the combined shouting, pricking, motion and new smell startled the troll enough to become confused between targets. When it turned and squinted in the direction of Harry, Harry threw a piece straight at it's eyes, causing it to stumble backwards and cover it's face, giving him the time to run over to Hermione. She was still struggling under the rubble, and after a few weak attempts to pull it off, Harry stood back and said,"Hermione, stay still for a minute!" She must have heard the command in his voice because she immediately went still and covered her face with her hands.
Harry then did the swish and flick that had been the topic of today's charms class and the start of all this trouble, shouting "Wingardium Leviosa!" The pile of rubble shook slightly, then lifted off of Hermione, giving her time to scuttle from under the pile. By the time she was away and Harry had helped her up, the troll had finally realized that there were no longer sharp twigs being thrown at it. It looked again and sensed the two small prey just over by the wall, smelling their fear easily. It charged forward, swinging its club blindly, and at the last second, Harry and Hermione ducked, but it was close. They could've sworn that they felt the club touch their hair.
Not wanting to waste another second on the horrid creature, they bolted for the exit before the troll could realize he'd missed. As soon as they were out, they slammed the door shut and ran halfway down the hall, panting once they'd determined that the troll wasn't following. Once she had caught her breath, Hermione raised her wand at the door and muttered a phrase. A blue light shot out of the end of her wand, struck the door, and a distinct clicking sound could be heard. Harry looked at her questioningly, and she just replied "opposite of the Alohomora spell, chapter 5." Harry nodded.
Just after that, most of the staff, excluding Professor Quirrell, showed up. Looking at both Hermione and Harry, they stopped short, Professor McGonagall giving them a quizzical glance. Harry straightened and pointed toward the bathroom door. "The troll is in there," he explained, ignoring the shocked expressions of the others. As Flitwick led some others to the bathroom, Snape made his way to the nearest staircase, and Dumbledore and McGonagall stepped forward and confronted Harry about what happened. Harry stopped them first by raising his hand and pointing to Hermione. "She was buried under some rubble, perhaps we should get her to Madame Pomfrey first?"
Dumbledore smiled, a twinkle in his eye, and gestured behind him. "Lead on Mr. Potter, I am sure you should be checked as well. Once in the hospital wing I expect a full story however. I am sure your head of house would appreciate knowing whether she should take points for not listening, or reward you for something else." Professor Mcgonagall's usual stern face twitched in what might have been a smile before she started urging them onward.
Once they arrived, the Mcgonagall went to fetch Madame Pomfrey while Dumbledore led the two to some beds in the middle of the wing. Once they were settled and McGonagall and Pomfrey arrived, Harry started to explain while she ran her wand over Hermione, muttering diagnostic spells.
"While the students were heading out of the Great Hall, I remembered that someone mentioned Hermione didn't come to the feast and was in the 2nd floor bathroom. I figured that she didn't know about the troll, and by this time all the professors and prefects were gone so I couldn't tell anyone. I figured since the troll was in the dungeons, and hadn't had enough time to move much since Quirrell just arrived, I would be safe in going to warn Hermione and get her to come to the common room. Unfortunately, once I arrived in the bathroom, the troll was already in there and had destroyed some of the stalls, burying her in rubble. I distracted the troll and got her out from underneath so we ran out of there as fast as we could, and as soon as we did Hermione locked the door behind us. That's when you found us professors."
By this time Madame Pomfrey had finished checking them both and was listening as well. When he was done, she nodded and looked to Hermione. "You my dear, are fine, apart from a few bruises." She looked at Harry, and a frown crossed her gaze. "You however, Mr. Potter, have an interesting problem. I was diagnosing you for the usual, cuts, broken bones, bruises and the like, but I noticed something odd. May I speak with professors Dumbledore and McGonagall for a moment?" Harry nodded and they walked down to the end of the wing, but when they stopped, they went silent. They were talking, but he and Hermione couldn't hear a thing.
"Must be a privacy charm" Hermione said, looking at the professors. It was the first thing she had said since the bathroom. Harry looked over at her, and could see the tear tracks from earlier. He felt a pang of guilt. He grimaced and said, "Hey Hermione?
She looked back to him. "Yes?" She asked, looking at him, raising an eyebrow. "Huh," Harry thought. "She looks kinda cute when she does that." He shook his head to clear his thoughts. "Uhh, I just wanted to apologize, you know, during charms class-" She cut him off.
"Harry," she started, sounding upset. "Don't try to apologize for that git. He doesn't deserve-" Harry cut her off.
"No, I wasn't apologizing for him! I tried to get him to come and warn you with me, the git said no. No, I was apologizing for letting him get away with hurting you like that. Nobody should say things like that, especially since they aren't true." She cocked an eyebrow at this, again. "What I mean is, yes you are smart, but you're not a know-it-all, all you try to do is help people, no matter how they act to you. That, well, that makes you an amazing person. So I guess I'm sorry for letting you think any different."
He thought he must have said something wrong, because Hermione turned her head and he could see that she was crying again. "I'm sorry Hermione, I didn't mean to upset you, I just..."
She looked at him again, a smile gracing her features. "Harry, you didn't upset me, it's just... I was teased just like I am here back in my old school, and you are the first person to ever say something like that to me. Besides my parents I mean, its just, it's really really nice of you to say that."
Harry sighed, relieved that he hadn't upset her. "Trust me, I know what you mean about being bullied, that's kinda why I'm upset. I shouldn't have let it get that far. Although, I was more used to the more, how shall I put it, physical aspect." He ended chuckling.
Hermione looked concerned this time, and wiped away her tears sitting on the edge of her bed. "What do you mean Harry?" He sat up and was just going to explain about the bully's at his school, but someone from behind him said, "Yes Harry, please explain, although I would like you to start from the beginning, perhaps your home life? I believe there is something we don't know about." Harry turned and saw professor McGonagall looking furious, but not at him, Madame Pomfrey looking concerned, and Headmaster Dumbledore frowning, without the usual twinkle in his eye. He turned back and looked at Hermione again, who was looking between him and the professors. Harry looked at Dumbledore. "Umm, the whole story professor? What do you mean?"
"Perhaps an example of your normal day, in and out of school Mr. Potter," McGonagall suggested. Harry nodded, and started describing his normal day, first when he didn't have school, like during the summer holidays. "Well, when there wasn't school, my aunt usually woke me by rapping on my cupboard door in the morning-"
"Cupboard door! What do you mean Mr. Potter?" Professor McGonagall looked incredulous. Harry gave her a quizzical look. "Professor, who addresses the school lists you send out?" She looked at him oddly. "All we do is write the name Mr. Potter, the owl carries it to the person. If an address appears it is due to a muggle residence, thus sent through muggle post, a magical address appears once it enters the office." "Oh, because my letters always were sent to my room, which,until I got the first letter, was the cupboard under the stairs. The fact that the address was "Mr Harry Potter, The Cupboard Under the Stairs, convinced them that wizards were watching, and made them scared enough so they put me in my cousins second bedroom."
"Second bedroom?" This time it was Hermione who interrupted. "What do you mean second?" "Well, had one for him, and one for all his toys and other stuff he had he didn't want, like books and whatnot." "You're telling me," Hermione started, sounding shocked, "That while you slept in a cupboard, your cousin had a room full of old junk!" Harry just nodded. "What kind of people did you live with?"
Harry was about to reply when Headmaster said, "That, Miss Granger, is what we are trying to find out. Harry, if you would please continue, I think we will all hold our questions until the end." He looked at everyone, who each nodded. So Harry started where he left off, explaining how after that he would be made to make breakfast for the family, then go do various chores like weeding or washing the car, then at the end of the day he would clean the dishes and eat whatever leftovers there were from dinner, usually not much considering the size of Dudley. On days where he was lucky enough to finish chores early, he would usually head to the park or nearby wooded area, to get away from his aunt and uncle, but he had to be careful to avoid Dudley and his friends and their games of Harry hunting.
The schedule for school was pretty much the same, only he didn't have to do the chores, but he did still have to avoid Dudley. However, school had a different problem, all the teachers could do was make the problem worse, none ever could get as far as reporting it without getting a reprimand from the principal, who was getting bribes from his uncle. Most of the kids avoided him, after anyone who tried to get close would be beat up by Dudley. So school was only slightly less miserable, but he did love to learn, and he got lunch every day.
By the time Harry finished explaining all this, everyone aside from him had tears in their eyes. Hermione had her head turned away, hand over her eyes, sobs gently shaking her small frame. Madame Pomfrey was white as a sheet and her hands were wringing each other, like she could squeeze a cure right out of them. Dumbledore's twinkle was replaced by an eyeful of tears, only one escaping and rolling down his cheek into his beard. McGonagall had tear stains, but her face was suddenly set in fury and she rounded on the Headmaster.
"I told you!" She shouted furiously, tears leaking out of her eyes. "I told you they were the worst sort of muggles! Did you believe me? No! 'They're his family, its the only place he's safe,' that's the excuse you used. Safe from what? Death Eaters? He's not even safe from his own family! Did you think about even just once sending someone to check on the poor boy? No! Otherwise we could have avoided all this! What were you thinking Albus?"
The Headmaster looked sorrowful at the accusation, and his words were soft. "I'm afraid it is apparent I wasn't thinking Minerva. I don't know how I could have allowed such an outrageous oversight on my part. I feel I must apologize to you Harry. You see, 10 years ago, I placed you at that home, on the belief that growing up with muggles would help keep you humble, rather than in the wizarding world where any family I placed you with would be in awe at that time, and who knows what you would have turned out like. All of your parents friends were wizards, as are most of any witch or wizards. The Statue of Secrecy makes it difficult to maintain lasting relationships outside our world. I couldn't put you in an orphanage, someone could have discovered and taken you, and as it was your mothers bloodline, I was able to place certain wards of protection around that home. However, I do not see the point anymore, as they are not just based on blood, but love, the strongest of all magic, and there was clearly no love in that household."
Harry nodded at all of this, and said at the end, voice full of emotion, "Headmaster. I don't know if I can blame you for what's happened to me. I know you meant what was best when you placed me there, and wouldn't have left me if you had known what was going on. So you don't need to apologize for that. However, I would like to know about my future. As you can imagine, I would prefer not to stay with the Dursleys during the holidays, in fact, if I could just get a different guardian that would be much easier." Dumbledore merely nodded at this, not trusting his voice at the moment.
Madame Pomfrey waited a moment, and seeing that no one else had anything to say, at least for now, said "Well Mr. Potter, your story confirms what I found. There were remnants of neglect and abuse, you are malnourished and small for your age, and there are some scars and other injuries that never fully healed. Also, I found your magic is bound."
Dumbledore seemed surprised at this. "Bound Madame Pomfrey? I don't see how that is possible. Most children receive the binding after their first display of accidental magic. However, the binding is usually placed by the parents, it helps to control their accidental magic so that they can interact with muggles easier," he explained for Harry and Hermione. He turned back toward the healer. "However, don't most children have their first accidental magic burst at age 5 for the first time?"
Professor McGonagall interrupted here. "I kept in touch with Lily after they went in hiding. Apparently, Harry turned their cat green after it tried to scratch him. She had written me because James was so shocked." The three adults contemplated this for a moment before Harry broke their train of thought.
"Umm, so what does this mean?"Harry asked confused. Hermione nodded in agreement.
"Well," said Madame Pomfrey,"Normally children whose magic is bound will have it released once they understand it better, usually just a few years later so they can fully use it when they go to school. In your case, your magic has been bound for a long time, so it may take a few days to become stable after I unbind it. Also, I would like to put you on a daily potion to try to fix your malnourishment. A few healing potions and spells will take care of the rest. What I would recommend is to keep you in the Hospital Wing, under the idea that you were hurt in getting Hermione, while I take the time to start the healing. Once those are done, we will unbind your magic and keep you under observation for a few days, to make sure you are healthy enough. During this and after, I will have professor Snape brew you a nutrient nourishing potion that you will have to take for about a month. Once you are out of the Wing I will have the kitchens send it to you during breakfast."
Harry nodded, everything sounded good to him and now that all the excitement was over, the adrenaline rush he had been on had faded away and he was just tired. He laid back on his pillow, closing his eyes as the professors started talking and soon was asleep.
When Harry woke he reached for his glasses and was confused when they weren't on his bedside table. Then he remembered where he was, opened his eye's and sat up to look for them. He found them on a small tray near the edge of his bed and put them on. Sunlight was streaming through some windows and he could see that the wing was empty, aside from him. Looking down, he could see someone had transfigured his clothes into more appropriate sleepwear and put some blankets over him. He briefly wondered what had happened to Hermione before he saw that someone had put breakfast on the tray his glasses were on. Picking the tray up off the stand, he placed on his lap and saw a note.
"Dear Mr Potter,
After you fell asleep last night we discussed Madame Pomfrey's plan. As today is Friday, and you will not have classes over the weekend, we have decided that she will heal you today and tonight we will release your magic. Due to it being bound for so long, and the fact that showing magic at the age you have is an indication of high magical potential, we have decided to give you the weekend to adjust. This way you will not have to stay in the Hospital Wing beyond today as you will not need to preform magic until your class on Monday. However, Sunday evening Madame Pomfrey, Professor McGonagall and I would like to test your new level, if that is permissible. In the meantime, rest and relax.
Harry smiled at the letter. He would have hated to be cooped up in the hospital wing for any amount of time, but at least he could get out for the weekend! Still, he wondered what he should do about the classes he would be missing today. No doubt Dumbledore told the staff he was in the hospital wing, but how would he get his assignments done? He knew Snape would assign something over the weekend, it would be just like him, and he also wouldn't know what they had done during any of the lessons. "Oh well, maybe I can just see them over the weekend and find out what happened. Or maybe someone can tell me later," he thought.
Suddenly, the hospital wing doors opened and in walked a small familiar looking bushy haired girl, who was looking around the wing. Spotting him, she quickly made her way over bag bouncing against her side. Smiling widely, she sat in a chair next to his bed and said, "Hi Harry! How are you feeling today?"
Harry smiled back at her. "Hey Hermione! I am feeling great! Especially since I get to miss double potions today," he grinned, thinking about how good it was to be able to miss potions for one lesson, even if he had to make up work.
"Oh yeah, about that," began Hermione, chewing her lip nervously. "I asked the teachers before I left if you were going to have to miss today, you know, for the healing, and when they said you were I offered to get the assignments and take notes for you, is that okay?" she looked down, avoiding her eyes.
Harry's face lit up. "Oh you are a life saver Hermione! I was worried I was going to have to see the teachers over the weekend or worse. Knowing how good you are, I am sure your notes would be awesome! Do you think," he paused here, now he was nervous, though she seemed much happier. "Do you think you could help me with some of the assignments? And maybe some of the demonstrations? I am not supposed to do magic until Monday, since they will be unbinding my magic tonight, so maybe you could show me some of the stuff we have to work on?"
She beamed at him. "Of course I can!" Now she looked down and reached into her bag. "I just got back from breakfast in the Great Hall, and apparently the whole school is convinced that you cornered the Troll in a hallway and beat it in single hand combat or something along those lines." She gave a light laugh.
He, on the other hand, grimaced. "Great, just another reason to be stared at." He gave her a quick glance. "And where do you fit into the story?" He asked in a teasing tone. "The damsel in distress perhaps?"
She gave a very unladylike snort. "Actually yes. I think I was screaming in the trolls grasp while you battled him." She found what she was looking for and pulled out a book. "Since you were going to be stuck in the hospital wing all day I thought I'd give you something to read, you know, in case you get bored."
"Thanks," Harry said sincerely. He looked at the book she gave him, Hogwarts a History. "O cool, I never picked this one up, I only got what was on the book list."
"Really? It's one of my favorites," Hermione said softly. She looked at the book, then him, and blushed. "Umm, well, I guess I should be going then, class starts soon." She stood and and looked around for a second. "So, umm, yeah, I'll uh, drop off the class stuff later tonight, is that okay?" She seemed nervous again.
"Yeah, that sounds good," Harry said distractedly, he was looking in the book, trying to find a good place to start. He looked up and smiled. "Actually, if you don't have a lot of work, maybe the professors will let you stay for the unbinding, I'm kinda nervous about it, it'd be good to have a friend there."
Hermione blushed again. "Sure Harry, I'll stop by after dinner then." She smiled and walked out. Harry smiled to himself and started reading. A few minutes later Madame Pomfrey walked in, carrying a goblet full of brightly colored potion. "Good morning Mr. Potter," she smiled as she came up to him and saw the book he was reading. "I see Miss Granger stopped by." She picked up the tray and set it back on the stand, handing him the goblet. "Professor Snape just finished brewing your potion, so drink up."
Harry grimaced at the thought of Snape brewing him anything, but drank anyway. It didn't taste terrible, but it didn't taste good either. It was chalky and bitter, but went down easily enough. As soon as he finished drinking, Madame Pomfrey took the goblet and placed it on the tray. "Now," she said, turning to him, " Lets see what we need to fix." And with that she started waving her wand in complicated motions as she muttered incantations.
About two hours later, Madame Pomfrey finally finished. Harry felt bruised and battered, but in a good way, like how you feel after a workout. A sense of well-being permeated him, he assumed this was because of all the collective leftover injuries being healed. He doubted he had ever been as healthy as he was now. As Madame Pomfrey left to record the procedure, Harry laid back against the pillows and sighed. He would take a nap later, but for now he'd read. Grabbing Hermione's book he sat up again and read for the next few hours.
After he got about a third through the book, lunch appeared on a tray and stand just like it had at breakfast. As Harry ate, he realized he was able to eat more than usual, probably because of the potion and mass healing. He soon finished, and decided that instead of taking a nap, he'd try to get through the book. It really was very interesting, he could see why it was her favorite. There was so much information, and he wished he had read it before he came, maybe then he wouldn't have gotten lost for the first few days.
Harry didn't notice as the hours passed, he just sat in the bed, reading, as Madame Pomfrey stayed in her office, brewing some healing potions. She checked in on him occasionally, and smiled whenever she saw how engrossed he was in the book. Soon enough, dinner appeared next to him, but Harry didn't notice this, he was in the last chapter and didn't want to put the book down.
About half and hour after dinner appeared, the door to the hospital wing opened and Hermione walked in. Madame Pomfrey looked to see who walked in and when Hermione waved to her, she smiled waved her over. She walked up, a curious look on her face, but Madame Pomfrey just smiled. "Is Harry okay?" Hermione asked in a questioning tone, wondering why Madame Pomfrey wanted to speak with her.
"Oh he's perfectly fine dear, I patched everything up after breakfast. I just thought you should know, you may have a hard time getting that book back from him! The only time he put it down was during lunch, he hasn't even touched dinner yet! I also thought you should know, Professors Dumbledore, McGonagall, Flitwick, and Snape are going to be coming at 9 o'clock. Harry told me you were going to help him with his classwork, so you will have to stop by then, he will be back in the Gryffindor tower by tomorrow morning though."
Hermione gave Pomfrey a big smile. "Thanks for letting me know." She looked over at Harry and her grin grew. "I am just glad someone likes that book as much as I do!" And with that she walked over and sat on a stool next to his bed. Harry, however, was on the last page and didn't notice anyone there. Once he finished, the first thing he noticed was how late the time was. The second thing was that he had dinner to his right and Hermione on his left. He looked between the two and his stomach growled loudly, causing Hermione to laugh. "Go ahead, I'll tell you about class while you eat." Harry gave her a grin and started plowing into the food with abandon.
As Hermione lectured, she noticed Harry was listening with rapt attention, giving notice to everything she did or said. When she demonstrated some of the wand movements from charms class, she noticed that he was unknowingly moving his fork in the same pattern, accidentally mixing food on his plate. By the time she finished with the class lectures, Harry was done with his food and set it aside. "So," he started, "what were the assignments given?"
Hermione dug a sheet of paper from her bag. "Let's see, the homework that we have now is a two foot essay on transmuting materials in Transfiguration, that was assigned Monday, in Charms we just have to practice Alohomora on our trunks, Potions is a 3 foot essay on the basic ingredients for sleeping draft, and Herbology and Astronomy we just have to be ready for the next practicals." She looked at Harry who nodded. He said, "Okay, well I have that Transfiguration essay nearly done, just have to double check everything and add a conclusion, I already have the unlocking charm memorized, I looked it up after the dog incident, during which you were brilliant by the way, and I am guessing the Potions essay was just assigned today?" He looked at her questioningly, and she nodded. "Alright then, what do you want to do?"
Hermione looked surprised to be asked that. "What do you mean?"
"Well it's rather simple," he answered patiently, using his hands to emphasize his points as they came along. "I don't have my essay, so I can't do that, I can't practice any spells, as there is nothing here to practice on, I really don't feel like doing Snape's essay, besides, with not being able to do magic all weekend I will need something to do besides talk to you, which is what I feel like doing now. Since there is nothing I can do while I wait that doesn't involve you, what do you want to do?"
She smiled when she pointed everything out so logically, and that he actually wanted to talk to and spend time with her. No one had ever wanted to spend time with her before. "Well, how about we just talk? I see you finished the book," she said, pointing to the now closed copy of Hogwarts A History, lying face up on his lap. Harry's face lit up. "Yeah, I did, I thought it was an amazing read! My favorite part was reading about the four founders and everything they did to the school! I can't believe that the Sorting Hat actually belonged to Gryffindor!"
Hermione practically beamed with simple joy at being able to have an intellectual discussion with someone her own age. "I know, and did you understand all their beliefs about who should be accepted? I mean, according to what everyone believes, I should be in Ravenclaw, but when I, you know, talked to the Hat, he told me that anyone could be in any house, he just places them where he thinks they will do best."
Harry looked thoughtful at this. "Well I know it also takes choice into account," he said, before he really realized what he was saying. He mentally hit himself. Stupid, why tell her that?
Hermione looked curious. "How do you know that?" she asked, looking at him oddly.
Harry gave a resigned sigh. "Because the Hat said I could be great in Slytherin, but I told it I would take anything but Slytherin. After seeing that Malfoy had been sorted into that house, and hearing that no witch or wizard who went dark wasn't in that house, I just didn't want anything to do with the place. So the Hat put me in Gryffindor."
Hermione looked surprised, but not upset or scared, which Harry had to give her credit for. "You know, that makes sense in a way. But some of it's not true. Seeing what you did with the troll,you showed cunning and ambition, while being brave. You came looking for me, and when you saw the troll and I you didn't run to get a teacher, and were able to distract the troll in order to get to me, I'd say that show's cunning and bravery, so it makes sense you could have been in either house. And what you heard, well, there have been bad wizards from every house, and Dark doesn't mean bad. Magic is magic, it's how you use it that matters."
Harry looked impressed. "I never thought of it that way. But where did you get the idea that dark magic isn't evil? I mean, I know you aren't practicing it or anything," he said, half joking. She gave a small chuckle. "No I'm not. I don't mean those Dark rituals or spells that actually corrupt you though, those are evil spells. No, I just mean spells that are classified as dark that don't need to be. As for the idea, I actually got it from my parents."
Harry looked confused. "But I thought you were muggle born and raised, like I was raised." She nodded. "Yes, but the idea is the same as a muggle idea of weapons. Any spell or weapon can be used for both good and evil, it isn't the nature of the weapon that makes it so, it is the intent of the user. There are no evil spells, only evil witches or wizards." Harry nodded in agreement and changed the subject to another portion of the book.
Madame Pomfrey had been looking on the entire time, and though the conversation made her think, she was glad when they moved on to another topic. She gave a small smile when she saw how close they were getting when trying to explain their views on a particular part about a passage in the middle of the book and slowly retreated into her office. Maybe the Professors would wait an extra half hour, this was too entertaining.
In fact, when the Professors did arrive, they had to wait anyway. Snape was in his office putting the finishing touches on a new batch of mild sleeping potions and had to bottle and label them before bringing them up to the wing, so they had to wait for him. As they waited, Madame Pomfrey showed them Harry and Hermione through the small window she had in her office that she used to keep an eye on the patients. McGonagall was watching intently, stern look replaced by a cat's curiosity, Flitwick was casually observing with a rather large grin on his face, and Dumbledore was watching, looking neutral, but for the twinkle in his eye.
Pomfrey explained, "She loaned him the book this morning, after I did the healing, he didn't stop reading until she came in and they haven't stopped talking since." McGonagall gave a faint smile. "If it weren't for their ages, I would say that it were James and Lily sitting there," she said softly, remembering her former students. Madame Pomfrey looked at her curiously. "You don't think," she began, trailing off in thought. McGonagall gave an answer anyway. "No matter what I think, I am sure we will find out soon enough." She smiled, but immediately returned to her stern face when Professor Snape entered the office.
Snape looked to everyone, then peered out the window. "Well, are we going to do this or what?" he said, his usual sneer evident in his voice. Dumbledore finally looked away and nodded, twinkle still in his eye. "Indeed we are Severus. I trust you brought some of the potion?" Snape nodded, holding up a goblet. "Excellent. And the leftover is in the storage cabinet?" Another nod. "Right then, shall we?" Albus held open the door for the rest.
As the professors entered the room, Harry and Hermione stopped conversation to observe them walking in. Professors Dumbledore, McGonagall, and Flitwick, with Pomfrey, were walking quickly, smiles on their faces as they approached the bed. Snape hung back, clearly uncomfortable being asked to help his least favorite student. When they reached the bed, Hermione made to get up, but Harry grabbed her arm, forestalling her departure. She started, surprised, but sat back down, giving him an odd look. He looked back pleadingly, and she consented to stay, as long as he needed her to. Obviously he was uncomfortable being here, and she couldn't really blame him. After all, all that were here was the Headmaster, a powerful wizard, but he had so much limited interaction with the students that nobody really knew him. There was McGonagall, who as their head of house they knew better, but she was stern and strict, not really comforting. Flitwick, who they only knew from Charms class, and Pomfrey were nice, but they weren't known well. And Snape, well, he was another story altogether, what with his and Harry's mutual hatred of each other. So Hermione would stay.
After they all regarded each other, Dumbledore started. "Well Harry, the procedure is fairly simple, Professor Snape is going to give you a sleeping draft while I and Professor Flitwick will study the charm that binds your magic. After we determine the necessary counter charm, we shall preform it, after which Madame Pomfrey will measure your new core and check your overall health again, to ascertain that nothing went wrong. Professor McGonagall is here as your head of house, to simply observe everything. Also because you are proving to be most interesting Mr. Potter." His eye twinkled a little brighter with that statement, and Hermione gave a small chuckle.
Harry nodded and looked to Snape. "Well, let's just get this over with," he said, holding out a hand for the goblet that he was holding. Snape's sneer grew, but with so many teachers present he dared not say anything, but simply thrust the goblet into Harry's waiting hands. Harry glanced around at everyone, gaze finally resting on Hermione, where it lingered before he downed the potion and almost immediately fell back against the pillows, cup caught by Pomfrey before it fell on the floor. She then lifted his eyelids and saw he was truly knocked out.
Pomfrey nodded to Dumbledore, who approached Harry with Flitwick and each laid a hand on his chest. There was a soft murmur as both chanted softly, two different phrases each time, using different incantations to increase the chance of finding it quicker. When Dumbledore was in the middle of a particularly long chant, Flitwick interrupted quietly saying, "Got it Albus." Dumbledore finished the chant, not wanting anything to be unfinished and interfere with the next delicate process. When he was done, he turned to Flitwick, noting the frown on his face. "Well Filius, what is it?" The frown increased in size and intensity.
"Albus, there's something else there. Not just the binding, which is a standard ancient and noble type a bind. There's something... darker. Not even spell work, there's an evil presence in the boy." McGonagall looked incredulous at this. "Surely you don't mean to try to tell me the boy is evil?" Before Flitwick could reply, Hermione interjected. "Now I know that's not even remotely true," she said, looking up at the surprised faces of the adults. "Well- I mean-" she stammered, not used to standing up to adults like this. "It's just, he saved me from the troll after all, and while we talked, he was nothing but polite and kind and nice, and well, there's no way that Harry could be evil."
Flitwick gave her a knowing smile. "That is not what I meant at all Professor McGonagall and Miss Granger. This evil presence, its not of the boy, its foreign, a completely different entity." Dumbledore looked particularly alarmed at this assessment, which all the adults present noticed. Hermione was too focused on Harry to realize it. They moved off to the side a bit, just to converse a little more privately.
"What are you thinking Albus?" McGonagall asked in a worried tone. It had been a long time before she had seen the Headmaster with a look like that on his face. His face, which had been down in pensive thought, had looked up at all of them in worry and anxiousness. "I cannot be sure of my suspicions," he started slowly, unsure of how much to reveal, as he didn't know anything yet. All he had was conjecture, no proof. Still, he could explain something. "When Harry was able to banish the dark lord, it was believed to be a part due to his mother's protection. However, if that was the case, why wouldn't this have worked for all the other parents, as Lily would have shared the secret. Something about that night never sat right with me. I know Voldemort cast the killing curse that should have killed Harry, and up until now I thought it had merely backfired. But something else may have happened that night, something that maybe caused part of him to be trapped in Harry. Until we can study it further, I suggest we continue on as planned. Perhaps unlocking Harry's magical potential will help solve this mystery anyway." He looked worried still, but determined. So when he turned around to go back, the rest followed.
As they approached, Hermione only looked up questioningly before turning back to Harry. She seemed content to be a watchful vigil over the sleeping boy, perhaps sensing that she wouldn't be able to do much else with such complicated magic. When they reached the bed, Dumbledore briefly conversed with Flitwick to ascertain which counter spell would work best. Once they were decided, they stood on either side of Harry's bed, Hermione moved to the foot, standing, watching the proceedings with interest.
Both spell casters drew their wands and began complicated movements over the boy's torso. The incantations were not murmured this time, and they were in sync with each other. It was rather impressive to watch, both moving and speaking in tandem. Suddenly, a soft golden glow began to appear on, or maybe in, Harry's chest. It was hard to tell where exactly the light was, but it's source was obvious. Soon the glow began to spread. It had started in the torso, where the heart was, and quickly spread over the rest of it. Soon the golden light reached Harry's limbs and shot down them quickly. By the time it had reached his mouth, the tips of his finger's and toes were glowing, the nails shining slightly brighter than the skin. Soon his mouth and nose were covered, looking chiseled from soft gold. However, when the gold covered his eye's something happened. It had just started to reach his forehead when the intensity increased tenfold. Dumbledore and Flitwick had their eye's closed in concentration, and were almost done, so could not be distracted, but the rest watched in horror.
As soon as the golden glow had touched Harry's scar, his eye's shot open. Were it not for the pain and panic in them, they would have been a beautiful sight, the iris was still a brilliant emerald, shining brighter than ever, and the whites and pupil were gold colored, literally shining with a faint radiance. The glow finished spreading over Harry, but he still looked to be in pain. Soon he was convulsing in the bed. Madame Pomfrey rushed to the bed and placed herself firmly on his torso, preventing him from bucking too much. She indicated Hermione to take his legs, which she did. After they had Harry, the chant stopped, and Dumbledore and Flitwick had a first look at what was going on. A loud gasp from both was the only hesitance before they sprang into action. Flitwick began examining the glow, which was brighter in intensity and had stayed much longer than was necessary, while Dumbledore inspected Harry's face, noting the look in his eye's with worry.
When his inspection reached Harry's scar, he did a double take. The scar was red and inflamed and was leaking something that looked like blood, but was pure black. He called the rest, aside from Pomfrey and Hermione, to help fix whatever had gone wrong. Flitwick and McGonagall were at his side in an instant, McGonagall conjuring an enchanted glass phial to collect the tar/blood like substance when she saw it. When Snape approached however, he immediately collapsed on the ground, writhing in pain and holding his left arm like it was broken. Dumbledore cast a worried glance in his direction, but if his suspicions were correct, once they were finished treating Harry, Severus wouldn't have a problem.
As McGonagall was trapping the blackness, Flitwick was about to preform a powerful sleeping charm on Harry, but Dumbledore stopped him. "If Harry becomes truly unconscious, then his magic may not work the way it needs too. We need him semi awake for this." And with that he took his wand and pointed it at Harry's scar, and letting magic suffuse his body and giving more power to the word said, "Expulsum!" causing the gooey viscous substance to flow out at a faster rate, filling the box quickly. Soon all that was left was a thick fiber connecting the foul looking liquid to the scar, which Flitwick cut with a well placed diffindo. As soon as he cast the spell, A high pitched scream pierced the air, causing the people to cover their ears in pain, including Harry and Severus, who had both finally stopped thrashing in pain. McGonagall snapped the box shut and the wailing stopped as suddenly as it had arrived.
Harry, still glowing, albeit much less brightly, sat up and looked around, rubbing his eye's. "What hap-" he stopped. He rubbed his eye's again, stopped, and screwed up his face in concentration. He took his glasses off with one hand, rubbed both eyes more vigorously, opened them and was about to put on the glasses, when he stopped, blinked, looked at them, and carefully set them down on the bedside table. Looking around curiously and cautiously, he started again. "What happened? All I remember is drinking the potion, seeing a golden glow, and waking up in pain. Then, well, now."
Everyone was visibly shaken, as they noticed that the glow had finally begun to leave, although Harry did look much better than before. Maybe it was the increase in magic, or the glowing, or the release of evil, or the lack of glasses, or perhaps all of it combined, but something was very different about Harry. He seemed more, content, comfortable, or confidant. There was an aura of power and satisfaction coming from him that wasn't there before. It threw most of the people there, aside from Dumbledore. He, however, did not answer, merely gestured toward McGonagall for the box. Observing it closely, he looked at the horrible material inside and barely listened as Hermione explained everything to Harry, aside from the teachers conversation, as she hadn't heard that. By the time Dumbledore was done observing, Hermione had finished and everyone was looking at him expectantly.
Dumbledore, before doing anything else, walked over to Snape, who was sitting collapsed on a chair. "Severus, I apologize for the pain this is going to cause, but I need to know. May I?" He asked, gesturing toward his left arm, the sleeve of which Snape grudgingly rolled up, then grimaced in pain. Everyone behind Dumbledore winced, but his eyes were focused on the box and arm. Snape's dark mark was black, which it hadn't been in 10 years, and the black mass in the box was writing and compressing. Soon it had formed an exact, 3d copy of the mark on Snape's arm. He and Dumbledore could hear a high pitched, cold voice, almost hiss, "I have seen your heart, and it is mine!" and the dark mass writhed again, trying to escape the box. Before anything else could happen, Dumbledore placed the box in his robe, hiding it from view.
He walked back to the bed, where everyone was waiting for him. Snape's face was shocked, he obviously knew something that the rest didn't but they would wait for Dumbledore to tell them. When he stopped at the foot of the bed, everyone was standing next to the bed, Harry sat up straighter, looking at him questioningly. He took a deep breath and began.
"What happened was a first occurrence as far as I am aware. What we collected is, as you've probably guessed, the evil presence that Filius was talking about. What it was, I did not know until a moment ago. When Voldemort was going to kill you, Harry, 10 years ago, he was going to try to take another step into immortality. He created what is known as a Horcrux." All the adults gasped and Pomfrey and McGonagall's hands shot to their mouth's, but Harry and Hermione looked confused. Dumbledore looked at them carefully. "What I am about to tell you I expect you to tell no one else. If this information fell into the wrong hands, then the results could be disastrous." They both nodded, and he continued. "A Horcrux is usually an object that is imbued with a piece of the caster's soul. If done properly, then the soul piece is split from the main soul and sent into an enchanted body, usually a valuable item of some significance to the caster. I suspect that Voldemort was prepared to make a Horcrux following your death, Harry, as you need to kill an innocent life to split your soul. However, because of all his previous killings, which I suspect were used to make other Horcruxes, and the death's of your parents, his soul was already split and when he tried to do the ultimate evil act, killing an innocent infant, his remaining soul shattered and a piece went into you."
Everyone was shocked at this revelation, but Harry looked most upset. Dumbledore acknowledged this and quickly reassured him. "Harry, it is no longer there, so you have nothing to worry about. Any evil that was there has been purged by your magic. Horcruxes were not meant to be in living hosts, especially magic ones. Because there was such a drastic difference between you and the piece of Voldemort's soul, your magic purged it out of your system. However..." everyone, who had been looking relieved, snapped to attention at this. "However, the prolonged experience of having a piece of Voldemort in you may have left it's mark. No, not your scar," he said as Harry's hand immediately went to his forehead. "Although I suspect that you will still have that mark for your life anyway. No, the type of mark I mean is on your magic. Voldemort, however evil, was a very powerful wizard. Judging by the reaction, I suspect that you are at least that strength, perhaps greater. And I believe that it was a muggle who said, 'What doesn't kill you only makes you stronger'. An expression that I believe will hold true."
Harry still looked troubled, but less so than before. Now, rather than worrying about being possessed by a Dark Lord, he was wondering if the botched procedure meant he had to stay in the hospital wing longer. He gave a quick pleading look at Madame Pomfrey, who seemed to understand and began her checkup. As she was going over him with her wand,Hermione took a seat by his side again, watching with passing interest, throwing Harry fleeting glances that made him nervous. He was worried she wouldn't want to be around him, after all, who would? He'd had a piece of the most feared Dark Lord in living memory, whose name most people were afraid of even saying.
As Harry was thinking this, Hermione was worried about Harry, but not the way he thought she was. She was worried for him, wondering if he was okay. When he had been convulsing during the procedure, she was so worried about him, worried that something would happen to the kind, sweet boy that had called her a friend, a first for her.
A/N: Okay, so you guys know, I did not spend the time that was meant for Tesla, Pirate, or Flamel on this. I actually wrote it months ago, and just decided to put it up. I know I don't normally do this, but since I have so many other fics, I wanted to see if anyone wanted this expanded or not. Feel free to read and review either way, although if you are reading this authors note you probably already read it...