Title: The Hen That Laid the Golden Eggs
Author: Lady FoxFire
Summary: The wizard world has always demanded the blood, sweat and tears from Harry and now they're demanding one more thing.
Disclaimer: I don't own the Harry Potter universe nor to I make any money from this fic.
Bad Author Notes: This is inspired by another writer who had the Wizard World dismiss Harry after he gave all his money away in order to help those harmed during the war.
From the journal of Harry Potter.
It all started 137 days after the death of Voldemort when people started to ask 'why didn't I kill him earlier'. Of course they never really listened to my answers just like they never listened to my warnings.
Before long they started demanding to know why I hadn't saved their son, daughter, husband…. The family cow…. And yes someone actually did ask that. Of course there were the demands from the shopkeepers who wanted to know why didn't I save their shop?
Of course shortly after the demands for answers started the demands for reparations began. Not from those who had started the war… the Death Eaters.. no from me. People figured that since I inherited a large number of estates from now deceased Death Eaters, got to love the inbreeding among the Pure Bloods, then I should pay compensation to them for the Death Eaters' actions and for not killing Voldemort in a timely manner.
And whenever there is the talk of money, or to be exact, the taking of money from one person to give to a number of other people, the rats start appearing i.e. the politicians. There existed two camps among the politicians when you excluded those who only voted according to Light or Dark side in the Wizengamot since the majority of the time they're dead asleep and really don't care about the issue. The first camp was made up of those who thought I should hand over the money to everyone who had been hurt in the war. Muggles were not included in their demands for reparations though, since that would mean that the wizard world would have to admit that what happened to the Muggles was their fault. The second camp thought I should keep my money but thought it might be a good idea to hand out some compensation so that there wasn't bad blood between the rest of the wizard world and me. The one thing that both camps agreed on though was that any and all compensation should be taxed.
And then there was the goblin nation, who would have already stripped my vault bare if it weren't for the magic behind the treaties. Nasty little buggers. They would stab you in the back while robbing you blind if they could get away with it. And now they want me to pay reparations for something I never did. How could I destroy Gringotts' reputation of being impenetrable when Quirrell had done that during my First year at Hogwarts?
As for my friends… Ron thought it was a good idea to share the wealth with those who deserved it. I'm not trying to make him sound greedy, not that he hasn't had problems with me having money in the past but he thought that those who fought against the Dark Lord should be rewarded for their work. Oh don't worry I know he's greedy, everyone is to some degree, it's just he's gotten better at hiding it as he's matured. And then there is Hermione, freedom fighter for the house elves who don't want to be freed. While I agree that Hermione is the smartest girl I have ever met, she lacks common sense or is it people smarts. So when I asked her for her opinion on the matter she pointed out how she could see both sides of the matter. She could see how people deserved compensation for their loss but on the other hand she pointed out that it was blood money that would never truly equal the value of the lives lost. She told me to do what I thought was best.
So here I am damned if I do and damned if I don't. If I hand over my money for reparations it will never be enough. They will continue to demand more and more and when it's all gone they will still blame me for their loss. If I don't hand out the money then I'm a greedy bastard who's making money off the blood and tears of those who were hurt and killed in the war.
Well there is only one way to handle all of this. One way to make the wizard world face up to the truth and rub their face in it.
The Daily Prophet had run the full-page ad, stating that Potter was handing out reparations for the Death Eaters' war crimes for over a week. And in turn people had flocked to the building Harry was using as his base of operations. Some people had even camped out days ahead so that they could be first in line and receive their share before it ran out.
At 9 o'clock exactly, a house elf opened the door and ushered one wizard only into the building. Twenty minutes later the glum faced wizard exited the building and a young witch was allowed to enter.
Those in line shouted at the wizard, demanding to know how much he had received. The wizard replied with the simple answer of 'my fair share' and would say no more on the matter before he disapparated.
Twenty minutes later the young witch exited the building with a sad but contented smile on her face. Again the crowded demanded to know much she had received only for her to reply 'my fair share' before walking away.
And so it continued on. Witches and wizards entered the building one by one, some exited with some degree of contentment while other exited downtrodden.
Finally it was the turn of Madam Malkin; known to all across Britain as the seamstress to go to for robes for all occasions.
The house elf closed the door behind Madam Malkin after allowing her to come in. "Winky need papers filled out," the female house elf said as she handed Madam Malkin the papers and showed her to a desk where she could complete them.
"What are these for?" Madam Malkin asked as she started to write in required information.
Winky sighed wearily as if she heard this question from every single witch and wizard that had been in the building today. Then in a bored tone of voice she said, "Papers are for Master Harry Potter's record so Master Harry Potter knows that everyone is paid."
"Oh," Madam Malkin replied as she filled the rest of the documents out. Once finished she handed the papers back to Winky. "Now what?"
"Now Winky will show you to Master Harry Potter. You give Master Harry Potter your oath. Master Harry Potter asks some question and then Master Harry Potter gives you some money," Winky answered.
"Oath? What oath?" Madam Malkin asked.
"Winky doesn't under everything about oath but Master Harry Potter says it's to protect both the witch or wizard that comes for the money and Master Harry Potter," Winky told her.
"Oh. Oh I understand," Madam Malkin said as it dawned on her what the oath could be.
Winky led Madam Malkin to the second floor where the house elf knocked on a door. A muffled 'enter' was all the house elf needed to open the door.
The house elf walked in leaving Madam Malkin waiting in the doorway to be introduced and invited in to the room. Winky held out the forms Madam Malkin had filled out to the wizard sitting behind a large desk.
"Thank you, Winky," Harry took the forms. "Please show Madam Malkin in."
"Yes, Master Harry Potter," Winky said with a little curtsy before walking back to the Madam Malkin. "Master Harry Potter can see you now."
"Thank you," Madam Malkin walked past the house elf who closed the door behind her.
"Please have a seat, Madam Malkin," Harry requested with a wave of his hand towards the seat across the desk from him.
"Thank you, Mr. Potter," Madam Malkin took the seat.
"Let's get down to business," Harry pushed a sheet of paper across the desk towards Madam Malkin. "This is the copy of the oath I am willing to swear and one you will need to take."
"Oath? What oath," Madam Malkin had forgotten that the house elf had told her she would need to swear an oath. She leaned forward in her chair so she could read the paper without touching it.
"The oath is for our protection… yours as well as mine. You will not be able to speak about this meeting to anyone. Nor will you be able to tell anyone how much you received, or make it seem as if you were hurt more than you really were by this war. In addition you will not be able to take me to court for more money once you receive your fair share. And I will not be able to tell the Ministry how much you received, if you were involved in any criminal activities nor can I affect the amount you receive based on my personal opinion of you."
"I don't imagine the Ministry will be pleased with you Mister Potter, after all you're denying them their taxes," Madam Malkin said with a knowing smirk.
"No. No, I don't think the Ministry will be pleased at all," Harry replied with his own smirk. "So are we in agreement."
Madam Malkin looked over the oath once again before nodding her head. "Yes," she pulled out her wand and made the requested oath.
Harry swore his oath in return. "Right," he said as he put his wand away, "Now that's out of the way we can start on the questionnaire."
Harry nodded his head absentmindedly as he sorted through his papers. "It's something the French and Bulgarian Ministry were able to help me design. It allows me to determine the correct amount each person should receive. That way someone who lost a loved one would receive more than say someone who received a bad fright."
"Why didn't the British Ministry help with this questionnaire? I'm sure they would have been more than willing to help instead of you having to go to these foreign governments for help," Madam Malkin asked, the disdain for the foreign government evident in her tone of voice.
"They're too close to the problem. I needed an outsider's point of view," Harry answered. "Besides if the Ministry knew the questions and the point value placed on each question then they would be able to figure out how much you received and tax you for it."
Madam Malkin nodded her head in acceptance as she leaned back in her chair waiting for Harry to begin.
"Question 1. Have you ever been a marked or unmarked supporter of Lord Voldemort aka Tom Marvolo Riddle and his followers known as Death Eaters?" Harry read from the questionnaire.
"No!" Madam Malkin said in outrage.
"Good. That's good," Harry said as he made a note on the page. "I actually had one of the Dark Lord's unmarked supporters come in demanding reparations from me because I defeated Voldemort. He didn't get anything, of course."
Harry's answer seemed to settle Madam Malkin's outrage over being asked such a question.
"Question 2. Do you believe in the Pure-Blood ideals; that being that the purer the witch or wizard is the better they are and that Half-bloods and Muggle-born should be considered 2nd class and 3rd class citizens. And that Muggles are basically animals?"
"Well Muggles ain't as great as wizard folks after all they don't have any magic," Madam Malkin said before covering her mouth with her hands. "What… what… I didn't mean to say that."
"That's alright, Madam Malkin. You're not the first. Surprisingly number of Muggleborns and Half-bloods feel the same way even though they know about the achievements that the Muggle society has accomplished," Harry said as jotted down his notes.
"But… but I didn't mean to say that," Madam Malkin stated.
Harry nodded his head once again. "It's the oath. It makes you tell the truth."
"I didn't mean to agree to that! Argh!" Madam Malkin growled in frustration because the oath forced her to the truth instead of some polite lie.
"I wouldn't be too concern about it after all the oath stops me from telling anyone about anything I learn here," Harry replied in a bored tone.
"But that doesn't mean you can't delve into my personal secrets with me having no way to avoid answering," Madam Malkin snapped.
Harry put down the Muggle pen he was using as he turned his full attention on to Madam Malkin. "First, I don't care about your personal secrets. The only reason I'm doing this is satisfy the demands on the wizard population. And second to avoid saying anything you don't want to say… keep your mouth shut."
Harry then picked up his pen again. "Question 3. Was anyone of your immediate family killed by Death Eater? Immediate family is defined as your spouse, children, your spouse's or your parents and siblings."
"No," Madam Malkin growled.
"Question 4. Was anyone of your immediate family injured mentally or physically by a Death Eater?"
Madam Malkin growled her answer once again. "No."
"Good," Harry said with an honest smile. "I'm glad no one in your immediate family was injured or killed."
"What about my cousins and aunts and uncle," Madam Malkin demanded.
"Their immediate family will have to apply for compensation, just as you are," Harry replied.
Madam Malkin crossed her arms over her chest and glared at Harry.
"Question 5. Was your home damaged or destroyed by Death Eaters?"
"No." Madam Malkin said sharply.
"Question 6. If you owned a business was your business damaged or destroyed by a Death Eaters attack?" Harry read.
"No but I did suffer a loss of profit from the Death Eaters scaring off the Muggleborn and Half-blood," Madam Malkin stated.
"Really. Compared to your end of the year profits from 5 years ago or 3 years, how much have you lost?" Harry asked.
Madam Malkin sat there and glared at Harry.
"I'm just asking for a guess. No exact number. 5% loss? 10%?" Harry asked.
Madam Malkin's lips thinned as she pressed them together.
Harry nodded his head. "Right. So you either made equal or more this year due to all the clothes the Death Eaters and their supporters ordered."
Madam Malkin's eyes narrowed with anger.
"I'm sure you're not the only one on Diagon Alley who profited. Of course that is all between you and the Ministry when it comes to paying your taxes," Harry said as he added some more notes to his papers. "Question 7. How many Death Eaters did you kill?"
"What!" Madam Malkin exclaimed. "I didn't kill anyone!"
"Question 8. How many Death Eaters did you injure?" Harry asked.
Madam Malkin shook her head. "I didn't fight anyone. I didn't kill anyone. I'm not an Auror. I'm a seamstress."
"Of course not. Not everyone is a fighter. Some people serve better as support than on the front line which leads us to Question 9. Did you give any aid at all to Muggleborn, Half-blood or those fighting to overthrow Voldemort and his Death Eaters?" Harry asked.
"I… I… I warned some children… Half-blood I think to get out of the Diagon Alley before someone saw them and turned them in. I'm just a seamstress. What could I do?" Madam Malkin asked.
"Food. Shelter. Clothing. Money. Information. Things you overheard in the alley or while fitting clothes. After all the wizard world is well known for overlooking the help," Harry suggested without any trace of pity or condemnation for the woman.
"They would have found out if I did something like that. They would have come for me. They would have done terrible things to me," Madam Malkin said as she hugged herself.
"Yes, I know. I know that very well," Harry said in an almost dead tone of voice. "Final question. With everything that has come out about Tom Riddle, the Ministry and the wizard world's role in this war, who do you blame for everything that happened?"
Madam Malkin sat quietly for a moment. "Muggles," she said softly. "They're the ones that created Tom. If his father had never abandoned his mother or he wasn't placed that orphanage he would have never grown up to become a Dark Lord."
"And yet they created me," Harry said. "I may have been born a Half-blood but I too was raised in the Muggle world. And you are forgetting that Tom's father was a victim. Victim of rape by magic. All caused by the wizard world."
"What right do you have to blame the wizard world for all of this?" Madam Malkin said in outrage.
"Unlike you, I earned the right." Harry told her flatly "I fought! I bled! I killed and I died! Then I came back to stop him. Not for you or for the wizard world but those who fought and died beside me. For those who are truly innocent of everything… the children."
Harry then pulled open a drawer on the desk and reached inside. He pulled a small bag out whose contents made a clinking sound. He threw the bag onto the desk near Madam Malkin. "Here is your compensation. Your blood money."
"How much," Madam Malkin slowly reached for the bag.
"Your fair share," Harry answered.
Madam Malkin opened the back and spilled the coins into her hand. She stared down at the 3 bronze coins in her hand. "3 Knuts! That's all?"
"That is your fair share for all that you did in the war," Harry replied. "You and so many others in the wizard world."
"But… but... it's not fair. I suffered," Madam Malkin said her hand closing around the coins.
"You were inconvenienced." Harry countered. "Others suffered. Our business is done, Madam Malkin. You may leave."
"I hope you choke on these," Madam Malkin threw the coins at Harry. "I can assure you, Mister Potter that the wizard world will not stand for this insult. We may not be able to speak about what happens but we will get our revenge."
"The British wizard world."
"What?" Madam Malkin said in confusion.
"The British wizard world will try for revenge; not that it matters since I'm leaving after I'm done with all of this," Harry admitted. "I did everything I had to end the war; everything the wizard world asked of me and yet you keep coming back demanding more. So I'm leaving."
"But… but… this is your home," Madam Malkin pointed out.
"Home implies family, safety and love. This is not my home," Harry disagreed. "Winky can show you out now."
"This way, Madam," the female house elf said as she guided the older woman out of the office and towards the exit.
"He's leaving us," Madam Malkin said softly.
"Yes. Master Harry Potter is going away," Winky agreed.
"Where will he go?" Madam Malkin asked as she gazed down at Winky as if the house elf had all the answers.
"Master Harry Potter is going to go find home," Winky answered.
"By why? Why is he leaving us?"
"Winky remember Winky's favorite story. Man and wifie had a hen that laid golden eggs but they killed the hen to get all the gold at once but found nothing inside. They lost all the good things the hen could give them because they wanted everything now. They weren't willing to wait for the hen to give them the good things when the hen was ready," Winky said.
"What does that have to do with anything," Madam Malkin demanded, missing the whole point of the story.
Winky opened the door and gently pushed Madam Malkin outside. "Master Harry Potter is the hen. Witches and wizard is man and wifie."
And with that Winky shut the door as Madam Malkin stared at it as those in line demanded to know how much she received.