A/N: So this is my first Harry Potter and I haven't read the books in a while. It uses an original character (Mel) that I developed in another story (my crossover fic) and she's from the Doctor Who world, so that means she knows about time travel. Set during the fifth book, AU in the fact that Umbridge isn't the DADA teacher.
Disclaimer: I disclaim and everything that you recognize in this chapter comes from Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix or Doctor Who. I do not own anything from either of these marvelous fandoms. I also wish to add that all of the text marked with an asterisk in the chapter below and any chapter following comes from the Harry Potter books directly with a few changes made by yours truly. In this chapter, all copied/adjusted text comes from pages 188-193.
Spoilers for Order of the Pheonix and Season Six of Doctor Who
Mel walked calmly through the massive doors on her first day at the school and made her way to the Headmaster's office, Albus Dumbledore. Once the gargoyle came into sight, she pushed the password into the forefront of her mind and said, in a distinctly feminine and English accented voice, "Fizzing Whizzbee."
The gargoyle moved aside and she stepped onto the staircase and waited for it to take her up the stairs. Once she arrived, she didn't bother knocking and walked straight into the office to the dismay of the other people inside. There were four currently residing in the room, excluding Dumbledore himself. Severus Snape was standing next to Dumbledore's desk and Minerva McGonagall was standing next to him. She recognized them from her own days at Hogwarts. One as a teacher and the other a student.
Both seemed to be watching the other two, who were situated in front of Dumbledore's desk, participate in a disagreement with the man himself. The redder faced man, who had suddenly stopped spouting words upon Mel's entry, was Cornelius Fudge and the other, a toad-like woman, had to be Dolores Umbridge.
"We put forward a teacher for you and you-" The Minister of Magic stopped talking when he heard the door close, his reddened and angry face turning to examine the intruder and causing him to pause in his rampage of Dumbledore. He straightened his back and went into the mode that was known as politically correct and sized up the woman that was now moving towards him. "Pleased to meet you?"
'Professor Song," Mel said shortly. Fudge's smile disappeared and his mouth turned sour when he realized that the reason for his heated debate with the Headmaster was standing clearly in front of him.
He looked over at the short piggish looking woman before turning back to Mel. "Yes, we've been expecting you." He didn't speak further and Mel wasn't sure if that was because he was too stunned by her appearance or if the toadish woman decided to take over where he had left off with the interrogation that was apparently going to happen.
"What qualifications do you have?" The voice that was coming from over her shoulder where Umbridge was standing was sweet and predatory, like a cat trying to lure a mouse to its grave.
"I wasn't aware that you required any qualifications, Ms Umbridge." Mel's voice was haughty and sure when she spoke, "Except ties to the Dark Lord that is."
"But you can't even perform magic, Ms Song." Umbridge retorted.
Fudge raised his eyebrows in surprise speaking. "But Muggles can't see Hogwarts."
"I'm not a Muggle, Mr Fudge." Mel replied politely.
"You're not a werewolf are you?" Fudge asked, before cutting himself off, "No, I'd have heard about you. So, you're human and-"
"No, Mr Fudge. Not human. In fact, I'm not even from this planet." Mel said, just as politely and calmly as before, but even her polite voice contained an air of menace. Fudge started spluttering but Umbridge asked a question without even waiting for him to stop.
"But you can't perform magic, so how will you teach the class?"
"The Ministry is regulating the class so much that I don't need to be able to perform magic to teach it." Mel shrugged and continued, "If you had your way Ms Umbridge, then magic would not be permitted here at all. Besides, I did attend Hogwarts roughly two decades ago."
Umbridge swelled at Mel's words, enforcing her appearance of a toad tenfold. Mel smiled at her politely and went to respond to the look that Umbridge was giving her when Dumbledore interrupted what was sure to turn into a quite violent argument. "Cornelius, Dolores: I believe your services will no longer be required. Minerva will show you to the door." McGonagall nodded at him and opened the door for the Minister and the Toad to leave.
Dumbledore turned to Snape once they left. "Severus, could you please alert the other staff as to the change of our Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher while I talk to Melody about this year's work?" he requested, although it was less a request and more a demand, albeit a quiet demand. Snape turned and left the room, never having said a word whilst Mel was present.
"He seems to have gotten even sweeter in his old age." Mel commented drily, raising an eyebrow at Dumbledore. He smiled at her benignly and she shrugged. "We might have been friends, but that doesn't mean I didn't know that he had a horrible disposition."
"I gathered." Dumbledore said, sounding amused but said nothing further.
Mel was confused about the nature of the meeting taking place, so she asked the first question she could think of that would hopefully lead her to an informative answer. "So are we going to talk about the curriculum?"
"We are." Dumbledore paused before continuing. "I would appreciate it if you would please follow the Ministry's regulations in regard to the curriculum for the Defence Against the Dark Arts, but if you choose not to, I understand."
Mel stared at him for a second, trying to work out what meaning he meant, when the twinkling in his eyes tipped her off. "Yes, absolutely sir, I completely understand what you're saying."
Dumbledore nodded, "And now I think it's time for you to leave and prepare for the feast in the Great Hall. I trust you remember your way around?" Mel nodded and turned to exit the room when Dumbledore called her back.
"Oh and Melody, I think perhaps you should change your clothes." Mel looked down at her leather pants and tight button up shirt ensemble and glanced up at Dumbledore. "Do you think it scared them off?"
"Almost certainly, almost certainly."
The students filed into the Great Hall and sat in their seats just after Mel came down and sat in her designated place between Snape (on her right) and McGonagall (on her left). She watched as everyone took their seats in an extremely noisy fashion. She calmly picked out the 'Potter boy' as Snape so fondly called him, though he'd never admit it. He appeared to be talking to a red-headed boy and a girl with extremely unruly brown hair. Mel laughed. Remind me to recommend my shampoo to the girl, Rose.
Definitely, she looks like she needs it. Shall I tell you who she is now?
Oh yes please, sweetie. All the names are just too much!
The redhead is Ronald Weasley, son of Arthur and Molly Weasley and-
Are they the blood traitors?
Yes. The one with the unruly hair is Hermione Granger, she's a Muggleborn so we don't have any information on her parentage here.
Okay thanks. Get back to you later. Mel subtly removed the earpiece that she had been using to communicate with her sister, Rosemarie Hathaway, in a telepathic link. The earpiece did not use electricity and operated simply to boost the mental abilities that the wearer already possessed.
Once all the students were seated, McGonagall stood up while a stool and hat were placed just in front of the teachers. A line of students, quite obviously first-years, were led out. Mel didn't bat an eyelid as the Hat, as it quite clearly deserved a capital letter, began to sing. She ignored the words of the song in favour of watching the students. The first-years seemed to be quite nervous and understandably so as they were standing in front of the entire student body. The rest of the school seemed quite interested in the Hat's song and everyone applauded once it stopped singing.
McGonagall began to read out the names of the students up the front and, one by one, they put the Hat on their heads and a house name was shouted out. Mel tuned out again, none of it was very important to her in that she knew everyone name's already.
Once the clapping died down and Dumbledore stood up to speak, she tuned back in for his announcements. "To our newcomers," He proclaimed loudly, to be heard over the talking that died down soon after he stood up. "Welcome! To our old hands, welcome back! There is a time for speech-making, but this is not it. Tuck in!"
Everyone laughed and started eating the food that had appeared magically on the plates. Mel stared down at the plates in front of her and smiled grimly, before deciding to ignore it and continue thinking about the lesson plans for the year. With Dumbledore's double-meaning this could go two ways. She could completely ignore the Ministry, teach them the spells anyway and make sure they didn't do something illegal. Or abide by Ministry wishes, teach them nothing but the theory, have them do something illegal, get caught and someone gets blamed.
Mel was so caught up in thought that she completely missed the somewhat scared looks and whispers that ran through the hall faster than the Olympic record for the hundred metre sprint once the student body noticed her lack of eating habits. The students were upset and they were quite justified, having a werewolf as a teacher two years prior had rather turned them off the supernatural side of wizarding; the other staff simply took Mel's (unintentional) lead and ignored the whispers too.
Dumbledore stood up and clapped his hands once everyone had finished eating. "Well, now that we are all digesting another magnificent feast, I beg a few moments of your attention for the usual start-of-term notices. First-years ought to know that the Forest in the grounds is out-of-bounds to students and a few of the older ones ought to know that by now too."* Mel watched as the trio at the Gryffindor table exchanged smirks as did the Weasley twins.
"Mr Filch, the caretaker, has asked me, for what he tells me is the four-hundred-and-sixty-second time, to remind you all that magic is not permitted in corridors between classes and nor are a number of other things. All of which can be checked on the extensive list which is now fastened to Mr Filch's door.*
"We have had two changes and an addition to staffing this year. We are very pleased to welcome back Professor Grubbly-Plank, who will be taking Care of Magical Creatures lessons and we are also delighted to welcome our new Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher, Professor Song, in what has become a time-honoured, annual tradition."
There were a few claps and broken laughter at the announcement and Mel raised her hand minimally to acknowledge the applause as whispers broke out amongst the purebloods and some half-bloods. A few of the teachers gave her a second glance, but most of the whispers seemed to originate from the Slytherin House, obviously their parents had told them about her in passing. Mel saw a look of terror pass between two children and thought, Or maybe not so much in passing. Dumbledore continued, paying no mind to the whispers that were travelling even faster than before.
"We also have a Ministry representative here with us and will be staying to make sure that the educational standards are upheld. I introduce High Inquisitor Dolores Umbridge." Mel didn't even glance down the table, instead choosing to look to her right at Snape. He was sneering at the woman, clearly understanding the meaning behind Dumbledore's word. Mel smirked at him and he raised an eyebrow at her, she jerked her head minutely backwards to indicate Umbridge and he snorted gently under his breath. They broke their gaze quickly, neither wanting the students to notice their apparent disregard for the new High Inquisitor.
Dumbledore continued speaking, but was interrupted by a little, 'Hem, hem.' Umbridge had gotten to her feet and it was obvious that she was about to give a speech. Mel rolled her eyes and silently encouraged Dumbledore to ignore the ditzy sadistic bimbo and keep talking. She gave a noiseless groan when it became apparent that he was intending to let her speak and Snape sighed next to her. Umbridge got to her feet and Dumbledore sat down. Mel turned to Umbridge to at least give the illusion she was listening, but mostly to watch the students' and teachers' reactions. McGonagall's lips had gone as thin as Mel had ever seen and Sprout's eyebrows were almost touching her hairline.
Umbridge simpered her way through her speech. "Thank you, Headmaster, for those kind words of welcome."* She was speaking to the children as if they were mentally impaired. Mel rolled her eyes, she needed to talk to someone and she couldn't put her earpiece in with everyone watching the High Table. She brushed Snape's hand gently, grabbing his attention and locking eyes with him. She brushed up against his Occlumency shields and his eyebrows rose before returning to normal and a mask of impassivity was brought down. She brushed against his shields again projecting calmness and curiosity then grabbed his metaphorical hand and led his mind into hers. She strengthened the connection and let him into the first layer of her mind (nothing important resided there; it was the first layer of defence) and that way he could be at least aware of his body and what it was doing.
What exactly did you do and why? Snape's voice rang out in Mel's mind and she winced inwardly.
Not so loud, bloody hell you're powerful. I need someone to talk to and you're possibly the most intelligent at the table.
Snape responded with a mental sneer. I just hope the children aren't as stupid as they seem and will at least listen to what the daft bint is saying.
Mel sighed and mentally shook her head. Well, she hasn't started speaking yet, so hopefully they will.
Umbridge began to speak and Mel dedicated a layer of her mind to filtering what the students were saying another to what they were thinking, another to what the teachers were thinking and yet another to what Umbridge was saying. Snape could only look on in shock as she organized her mind with such efficiency and power.
"Well, it is lovely to be back at Hogwarts, I must say!"* Umbridge simpered, smiling pointedly. "And to see such happy little faces looking up at me! I am very much looking forward to getting to know you all. I'm sure we'll be very good friends."
Snape snorted mentally again and Mel laughed before responding. They don't look so happy to me. Listen to Miss Patil, the Gryffindor one.
The echo resonated and Parvati's voice rang out. "I'll be her friend as long as I don't have to borrow that cardigan."
Snape didn't respond and Umbridge cleared her throat again and began to speak again. Some of the breathiness and simpering vanished to be replaced by a more businesslike tone.
"The Ministry of Magic has always considered the education of young witches and wizards to be of vital importance to our community. The rare gifts with which you were born may come to nothing if not nurtured and honed by careful instruction over the years. The ancient skills unique to the wizarding community must be passed down the generations lest we lose them forever. The treasure trove of magical knowledge amassed by our ancestors must be guarded, replenished and polished by those who have been called to the noble profession of teaching."*
Noble profession of teaching my ass. I'm only here because I owe Dumbledore and the bastard retains a gift for knowing the most inopportune time to call in a favour. Mel thought disgruntled and Snape had to wipe his face clean as his mouth twitched in laughter.
"Every headmaster and headmistress of Hogwarts has brought something new to the weighty task of governing this historic school and that is as it should be, for without progress there will be stagnation and decay. Then again, progress for progress' sake must be discouraged."*
Because it encourages free thinking and then we're all doomed. Mel thought snarkily.
"For our tried and tested traditions often require no tinkering. A balance must be found then, between new and old, between permanence and change, between tradition and innovation."
Snape rolled his eyes. We're doomed.
Mel laughed. When did you get so melodramatic, Snivellus?
Snape stiffened, but Mel ignored the reaction to the children's taunt. The only thing I'm worried about is that I had no idea one could develop Practiced In-front of Mirror Syndrome so fast. Maybe we should get her to a Healer. Mel's voice rang out with sarcasm and Snape thawed a bit when he realized the nickname had been in jest.
No one is listening to a word she says. The Hufflepuffs are oblivious-
Aren't they always? Interrupted Mel and Snape smirked.
The older Ravenclaws are somewhat aware and so are the Slytherins.
That actually doesn't surprise me. The Slytherins have always been good at reading between the lines.
And the only Gryffinder listening is Miss Granger.
Well, it's as I expected. At least she'll be able to tell Harry. Snape turned to her and raised an eyebrow at her use of his given name; Mel shrugged. I am his godmother. Snape nodded his head.
I always wondered about that. Will you be taking him from his Aunt and Uncle?
If he asks me to; I won't do it without his permission and you can take this back to Albus and tell him I said to go screw yourself.
I'll make sure he gets the message. Snape responded drily. Has she finished yet? I don't think my brain can stand any more without permanent damage.
Same here. Mel checked with her auditory senses and found that they detected the rumble of the students' discussion. She's done I think we can leave now. Don't forget to pass along my message; he's waiting for you to stay back.
Snape rolled his eyes and Mel smirked. Good luck.
I'll need it.