Harry Potter Disappears
An elderly man and woman waited outside of Number Four Privet Drive in Little Whinging, Surrey. Both were dressed somewhat strangely for that little cookie cutter community with its identical houses, almost as if the couple were from another time. The woman appeared to be arguing with the man, who was steadfast in his own line of reasoning. The woman's shoulders eventually slumped in defeat.
A low rumbling sound had broken the silence around them. It grew steadily louder as they looked up and down the street for some sign of a headlight; it swelled to a roar as they both looked up at the sky – and a huge motorcycle descended out of the night air. An enormous man dismounted, a man with wild bushy tangles of black hair, holding a bundle of blankets. Unobserved eyes watched the scene carefully.
The elderly man stepped over the low garden wall and walked to the front door. He laid Harry gently on the doorstep, took a letter out of his cloak, tucked it inside Harry's blankets, and then came back to the other two. For a full minute the three of them stood and looked at the little bundle. "Well," said Dumbledore finally, "that's that. We've no business staying here. We may as well go and join the celebrations." The huge man roared off on the motorcycle. In the woman's place, was a tabby cat slinking away into the darkness. The elderly man muttered, "Good luck, Harry," and then turned on his heel and with a swish of his cloak, he was gone.
Another figure immediately appeared, picked up the bundle and held it close. "Leave my grandson alone on a doorstep in the middle of the night in such a plebian neighborhood? I think not." That man also disappeared.
After a full evening of celebrations, the elderly man collapsed into his bed. It wasn't until he awoke the following morning that he checked on a variety of mysterious objects in his office. Albus Dumbledore's eyes widened marginally, and then he withdrew his wand and began casting spell after spell on the objects. All of them were negative. It was as if Harry Potter didn't even exist.
Samantha Stephens looked up with a surprised smile as thunder, lightning and a strong wind heralded the arrival of a powerful warlock. An elegantly dressed and debonair older gentleman appeared with the last loud crash of thunder, and Samantha's smile broadened.
"Daddy," she said fondly, "what an unexpected pleasure!"
The older gentleman removed his silk top hat. "Ah, my lovely child, your smile is like a breath of spring, a cool draught to a parched throat. How delightful to see you again, my dear." He opened one arm, concealing something with the other, and gave her a warm hug and accepted a kiss on the cheek.
"Not that I'm not always happy to see you, but what brings you here today, Daddy," she asked, trying to see what he had hidden in his other arm.
"This, my child." He moved his cape aside and revealed a sleeping toddler with dark hair and a barely healed cut on his forehead.
"A baby?" She looked at her father with surprise. "Does Mother know?"
"Does Mother know what," echoed a disembodied voice, right before a middle-aged red-headed woman appeared wearing a long lavender dress and a green outer garment. She looked at the toddler in the man's arms and raised an elegant eyebrow. "Really, Maurice," she said, "at your age?"
"Hush now, Endora," Maurice responded, "this may be a child of my loins, but he is a grandson of innumerable generations. I had a brief affaire de coeur with one of the wand wavers long before I met you that resulted in a child, but his true magic was latent, instead he had the traits of his mother. I marked him with a heritage spell, and as each generation was born, I checked to see if their true magic was still latent. This little one's was dormant when I checked him at his birth fifteen months ago, but he awakened to his full heritage last evening with the death of his parents. I believe some spell cast on him tonight awakened his true potential. Some foolish wand waver was going to leave him on a doorstep of a mortal family, without an ounce of magic in their plebian souls! I could not permit that, so I took custody of him."
Samantha took the bundle from her father's arms and couldn't help but smile as the child opened his eyes and looked at her with brilliant green eyes of his own. "He's adorable, Father! What is his name?"
Maurice grimaced before he replied, "They named the boy Harry James Potter, a name more suited to one of the unwashed huddled masses than my grandson. I think he looks more like a Harrison."
Endora moved closer to examine the child, disapproval clearly expressed on her face. Green eyes turned in her direction and noticed the red hair. "Mama" he murmured sleepily with a warm smile. The disapproval melted away from the witch's face and her face was softened by a smile. "No, Grandmama," she corrected. "G'mama" Harry sleepily agreed.
"And just what do you expect to do with this child," Endora asked her husband warily. "You can't just foster him out to anyone!"
Maurice looked sheepishly at Samantha. "I was actually hoping that you would take the child in hand until I can make other arrangements. I know that you need to talk to Dustbin about it, but surely Tabitha would enjoy a playmate her own age for a time?"
"Daddy, you're incorrigible," the blonde said affectionately. "Let me talk to Darrin, but I don't think he'll mind another child for a little while."
Six year old Harry watched his sister Tabitha as the artist painted her face like a cat at the outskirts of the local fairgrounds. The booth was near the entrance, only a few hundred feet from the parking area. He grinned at his sister, showing off the fake vampire teeth that came with his white-faced paint job. His Mom was a few yards away, getting them funnel cakes.
Harry heard a sound and was surprised to see a car with no driver heading towards the children getting their faces painted. A woman was running after the car, shouting words he couldn't make out. He blinked to slow the vehicle down and then ran towards it. Fortunately, the driver's door was open and he jumped in and stepped on the brakes. The car came to a stop only yards away from the shocked children and parents.
A young mother reached the car moments later and quickly threw the parking brake on. "Oh thank you," she exclaimed at Harry. "You brave boy! You're a hero!" She hugged him and then quickly opened the back seat where a toddler with a bright pink ribbon in her hair was still strapped into a car seat. "The parking brake slipped and with the incline, the car just got away from me," she said, with tears running down her face, as she hugged her own daughter tightly.
Samantha Stephens was already on the scene, hugging Harry closely and making sure he was all right. "It's OK, Mom," he whispered in her ear. "I had the car almost stopped already. I just thought it might look odd if it stopped by itself, so jumped in and hit the brake."
"You must be so proud of your son," the other mother exclaimed. "He's a real hero."
"Well, I'm not too happy about him running into danger," Samantha replied giving her son a look, "but I'm very glad no one was hurt and that your little girl is safe."
An Arts and Entertainment reporter had been covering the fair with a photographer and arrived just as the car started moving. The photographer quickly took a few pictures and the reporter took names and some notes. Harry tried to downplay the situation, but the story was published the next day. Reuters picked it up, and the story of the dark-haired six year old hero quickly spread to international papers. Darrin and Samantha Stephens refused all subsequent requests for interviews, stating that it wasn't in the best interest of a six year old to be subject to that type of attention.
Across the ocean, one Arabella Figg, was a squib living in the Muggle world in England. She had a subscription to The Daily Prophet, a magical newspaper, as well as The Guardian, a Muggle newspaper. She had finished reading the Daily Prophet and was casually turning the pages of the Guardian when a picture caught her attention. A dark-haired boy was standing by two women and two other children. Even with makeup on, the boy looked very much like a young James Potter, so she quickly read the story. Harrison Stephens in the United States and looked so much like a Potter that she quickly moved to her fireplace and threw in some powder.
"Albus Dumbledore, Headmaster's office, Hogwarts," she called. Within moments, a head appeared in the flames.
"Arabella? How delightful to hear from you. What brings you to my Floo, my dear?" The head was that of an elderly man with a long beard, small spectacles on a long nose, and a colorful hat perched on his head.
"Albus, you'll never guess what I saw. A picture of a little boy that looks just like James Potter. Do you…do you think it could be Harry Potter?" She quickly pushed the newspaper through the green flames to the man.
"A remarkable likeness," Albus murmured. He smiled with delight at the woman. "I believe this calls for an immediate investigation. Thank you, Arabella!"
Darrin Stephens was in the backyard, drinking his morning coffee and watching the children as they played on the swing set. He wasn't as surprised as one might expect when an elderly man with a white beard reaching past his belt and wearing a multi-colored robe appeared in his yard with a loud pop.
"Samantha," he called towards the house and then moved between the children and the stranger. "Who are you? One of Samantha's relatives?"
The elderly man stared at the two children, who had stopped playing and were watching him curiously.
"He's not one of us, Daddy," said Tabitha, looking at the man curiously.
"Wrong aura," agreed Harry. He thought the man was acting strangely and remembered what his parents told him about strangers; be wary.
"My apologies, Mr. Stephens, isn't it," the old man said with a grandfatherly smile that did nothing to alleviate Darrin's suspicions. "My name is Albus Dumbledore. I've been looking for a little boy that disappeared from England five years ago."
At that moment, a pretty blond woman came out of the house, wiping her hands on a towel. "You called, sweetheart?" She raised an eyebrow at the strangely clad old man.
"And you must be Mrs. Stephens. I was just explaining to your husband that my name is Albus Dumbledore. I've been looking for a boy that disappeared from England five years ago. Your son's picture that appeared in the paper recently resembled him greatly, so I came here to investigate."
"Our son was legally adopted in February of 1983, in both the mortal world and through the Witches Council," Samantha responded, narrowing her eyes slightly.
"Mrs. Stephens, I left young Harry with his maternal aunt and her husband, Petunia and Vernon Dursley, yet he disappeared from their home."
"He was left alone on a doorstep in November, something no responsible adult would ever do," she responded sharply. "He is part of our family, and I will thank you to leave."
"I'm afraid I can't do that, Mrs. Stephens," he replied with his kindest voice, while surreptitiously palming his wand in preparation for a quick rescue and obliviation.
Darrin Stephen's eyes narrowed and his face hardened. "Samantha," he said coldly, "I'm thinking that he would make a fine cat and that you should put him in the nearest dog pound. What do you think?"
Albus immediately attempted raised his wand, but found himself unable to move. He was stunned that neither of the Stephens had moved or uttered any incantations!
Another voice was heard in the air, although no person could be seen. "Why Durwood, I didn't know you had it in you!" A red-headed woman in a long purple robe with a green over garment appeared on the patio with them, with no noticeable sound of apparition, further startling the wizard.
"No one has ever threatened one of my children before," he said glaring fiercely the old man and showing no surprise at the sudden visitor.
"While Darrin's idea has merit, I think we should include Daddy in this discussion," Samantha replied slowly.
"If you must, my dear," said the older woman, crinkling her nose slightly. She moved behind the children and put an arm around each.
Albus Dumbledore was more baffled when the blonde simply called "Daddy, I need you," into the air. He was further startled when thunder rolled through the clear sky and lightening brightened the patio. With several puffs of smoke, a dapper older gentleman appeared next to the red-haired woman.
"Must you always make such a theatrical entrance, Maurice," grumbled the red-head.
The handsome older man responded airily, "As I told young Will Shakespeare, an aspiring thespian, 'All the world is a stage and all the men and women merely players; they have their exits and their entrances, and one man in his time plays many parts.'"
Samantha Stephens interrupted by saying briskly, "This is my father, Maurice and that is my mother, Endora. You've already met my husband, Darrin. Daddy, this…wizard…thinks that Harry was kidnapped and seemed ready to abduct him. He actually tried to raise his wand to us." She seemed both amused and offended by this.
Albus didn't think he could be more shocked, but being identified as a wizard by someone he thought to be a Muggle shook him.
"Ridiculous! And just how could my grandson be kidnapped by his own grandfather," Maurice said outraged. "His parents were dead and the only other living relatives were mortals without a scrap of magic in their blighted souls. I assumed custody of my grandson as is my right as his nearest living magical relative. My daughter and son-in-law later agreed to adopt the child." He arched an elegant eyebrow at the elderly wizard. "He is one of ours. We have always allowed you wand wavers to go on your merry way without interference. Do you dare try to now interfere with one of ours?"
The blonde's nose twitched as if she was about to sneeze, and Albus found himself able to move again. He attempted to raise his wand again, but found it was no longer in his hand. Endora smirked and waved her hand, showing the wand resting in her grasp. Albus was startled, but continued to try to reason with these people. After all, Harry Potter must return to Britain! "Mister…Maurice…all records indicate that his grandparents on both sides were deceased."
Maurice waved a hand dismissively. "I may have left off a few 'greats'. Harrison is my grandson through my liaison with a delightful little mortal witch named Hazel…no, Hilda." He frowned slightly and then smiled. "Helga, that was it! Charming creature, even if she was a wand waver. She used both a potion and spell to prevent accidents, but apparently my virility defeated her preventions."
Endora snorted and he looked over to her, then took her hand and lifted it up to his lips. "Of course, that was long before I met my lovely wife." He looked back at Albus. "Helga's son was magical enough for her world, but his true magical talents were latent, so he was unsuited to our world. However, I kept watch over the family through the generations. Harrison is capable of both magics and is truly one of us." His accompanying gesture included both his wife and daughter. "You have no jurisdiction over one of us, so I suggest you leave and never return."
"Merlin," Albus muttered quietly, trying to understand a state where he was not in control and thinking furiously as to how to salvage the situation.
"Why yes, I was known by that name at the time," Maurice said with a smile. "Is that name still remembered? How flattering. I used to wield a staff," an ornately carved staff covered with silver runes appeared in his hand, "and wore the robes of the period." His rich three-piece suit was replaced by a dark sapphire blue robe with a matching overcoat that had silver runes decorating the edges. His face gained a silver moustache and a short trimmed beard. "It was one of my more enjoyable personas. I even assisted Helga with her little school by authoring, 'Theory of Magick'. Useful only for wand wavers of course, but it was an entertaining diversion during our liaison."
Samantha looked at the elderly wizard and said frostily, "Now that you understand that Harry is with his legal and biological family, I trust there will be no further trouble?"
"Mrs. Stephens, I do apologize for my intrusion, but surely you want your son to be aware of his heritage. His birth parents were dear friends of mine…"
Maurice smiled coldly and interrupted, "And yet you left my grandson alone, on a chilly November night on a doorstep without so much as ringing the bell. If that is how you treat the orphaned child of dear friends, then I shudder to think how you treat the children of mere acquaintances."
Before Albus could respond he added, "I believe our conversation is at an end. I strongly recommend that you do not threaten one of our children again." With that, he slammed the staff down on the floor, and Albus disappeared.
Samantha turned and embraced her father. "Thank you, Daddy. I was about to follow Darrin's suggestion and turn him into a cat before dropping him into a dog pound before you showed up."
"Well done, Dustbin," Maurice said with approval. "We'll make a proper family member of you yet."
Albus Dumbledore, holder of an Order of Merlin, Chief Warlock of the Wizengamot, Supreme Mugwump of the International Confederation of Wizards, was stunned to find himself in his office at Hogwarts, with no after effects of a trans-Atlantic apparition.
"Oh dear," he uttered as realization struck. "They must be the First Ones, the Immortals. Maurice went by Merlin and had a child by a woman named Helga. Is it possible…" He walked over to his bookcase and picked up an ancient leather-bound book. Turning to the first page, he confirmed that it read 'Theory of Magick', a tome alleged to have been written by Merlin at the time that Hogwarts was founded.
He checked his wrist holster and was relieved but not terribly surprised to see his wand was again in its proper place. Albus flicked his wrist and the wand appeared in his grasp. A quick Lumos showed that the wand still responded to him, and he breathed a sigh of relief that the wand hadn't changed its allegiance.
He returned to the bookcase and searched for a small volume of only a dozen pages. Turning a couple of pages, he found what he was looking for. "The Witches Council is comprised of powerful First Ones who form the parliamentary branch of the First Magick holders. With the Magick Accords of 934, the entirety of the Wizarding world in Europe agreed to honour any and all judgments made by the Witches Council."
"This changes everything." Albus sat heavily in his seat and attempted to grasp the impact to many of his long-term plans.
One week after the unwelcome intrusion of the British wizard, Darrin had calmed down enough to let Harry out of the house after Samantha repeatedly assured him that she had both their children well protected and that nothing could harm them.
He was surprised then when he was relaxing reading the morning paper one Saturday morning and a tapping was heard in the living room. He looked at Samantha who seemed just as puzzled, before they both made their way from the kitchen to the living room. To their surprise, an owl was tapping on the glass door leading to the patio.
"Sam?" Darrin questioned. "Why is an owl tapping on our door?"
Samantha stared at the bird for a moment before shaking her head. "I'm not sure, sweetheart, but there seems to be something tied to its leg. Let me see." She opened the door and the bird hopped up to the back of the sofa and then extended its leg to her.
"There seems to be a scroll attached. How odd," she said.
"It's not from one of your relatives, is it?" Darrin asked guardedly.
"Of course not. They would simply send the message or pop in themselves. Of if they did want a messenger, it would be something a little more…exotic." She untied the scroll from the bird's leg and said "Thank you." The owl nodded and flew out of the room, landed on a branch of a tree in the back and immediately put its head under its wing, in preparation to sleep.
Samantha unrolled the scroll and then burst out in exasperation, "Oh my stars! It's from that wand waver again. Listen to this, sweetheart."
Dear Mr. and Mrs. Stephens,
Please accept my apologies for my uninvited imposition on your family. I had placed young Harry with his mother's sister, the only blood relative of which I knew, and only realized that he disappeared immediately afterwards. I was unaware that he had been taken by blood relatives and was very concerned for his safety.
You may be unaware, but his parents, James and Lily Potter, were killed by a dark wizard who also tried to kill Harry. His mother somehow put a protection on the child that prevented the dark wizard from also killing him, and by placing him with blood relatives of his mother, that protection could be extended. My concern for his safety was because not all of the followers of the dark wizard had been caught, and until we found young Harry, we were of course anxious. Hence, the world-wide search for him.
I understand that you have legally adopted him and have given him a place in your home. I also wanted to make the offer to help him understand his birth parents world as well, and would be happy to help introduce him to that world.
As the Headmaster of Britain's leading school for witchcraft and wizardry, Hogwarts, I know many of the people with whom his birth parents grew up, and I'm certain they would be interested in meeting the child and sharing stories of his parents and learning of his heritage.
He also has a place reserved at Hogwarts when he reaches eleven, something I'm sure James and Lily wanted for him, as it was their alma mater as well.
The owl that delivered this message will wait for your response.
Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore
Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizard; Order of Merlin, First Class;
Chief Warlock of the Wizengamot; Supreme Mugwump of the International Confederation of Wizards
"He left our son on a doorstep in November without even knocking on the door," growled Darrin. "And then he came here with the obvious intention of kidnapping him. Now he wants us to give him access to our son? I don't think so. Anyone that is willing to leave a toddler on a doorstep like a newspaper isn't someone I trust."
"I agree, sweetheart. You remember what I found when I stopped by the Dursleys a week after Daddy left Harry with us; they were absolutely awful. They despised anything to do with magic and that woman wasn't even upset that her sister was dead! Harry would have likely been abused in their so-called care." She frowned and looked at her husband. "I'm not going to deny Harry learning about his birth parents, but it certainly won't be until he's able to protect and defend himself. Perhaps in a few years, we can take a vacation in Britain as a family, see the sights and allow him to explore the wand wavers world under our supervision."
"Well, I still don't like it, but that's a long time away. Just make sure that no one shows up here in the meantime without our permission." He may not like all of Samantha's kooky relatives, but he could endure anything magical to protect his family.
Samantha twitched her nose and another parchment and quill appeared. "How's this, sweetheart?"
Thank you for your letter and apology. We will ensure that our son is aware of his birth parents' heritage as he gets older.
Please respect our wishes and do not contact us or our son again until he is ready to initiate an exchange on his own.
Mr. and Mrs. Darrin Stephens
"Short, sweet, and to the point. Thanks, Sam." Darrin kissed his wife tenderly.
"Why don't you give Larry a call and see if he wants to play golf," she suggested to her husband. "I'm sure you could use the stress relief."
Once he was on his way, she said quietly, "Message and owl, reappear at your sender, do not return no matter who engenders." The newly rewritten parchment and the sleeping owl in the tree disappeared.
In the Hogwarts Headmaster's office in Scotland, a meeting with the Heads of Houses was being held when a sleeping owl suddenly appeared on the back of the Headmaster's chair while a parchment appeared inches from his nose. The startled witches and wizards drew their wands and looked around in shock.
"Albus?" Minerva McGonagall said nervously. "How did…the wards…who…"
"Fascinating," murmured Filius Flitwick, who was casting some diagnostic spells. "They were transported straight through the wards, with no residual magical signature."
Albus leaned back and adjusted the half-moon glasses on his nose. "Apparently, the Stephens didn't want to ask the owl to make another Trans-Atlantic flight," he responded, trying not to show his own astonishment.
"The Stephens? Who are they," asked Pomona Sprout, Head of Hufflepuff. "I don't recall any family by that name."
"That is the name of the couple that adopted Harry Potter," explained Albus as he read the note.
"Of course, leave it to a Potter to be so arrogant as to violate Hogwarts security", muttered the dark-haired Severus Snape with venom lacing each word.
"They are Stephens, not Potters," responded the Headmaster mildly. "Young Mr. Potter was adopted by some of the First magical users. Apparently, one of them had a child with a witch that ultimately resulted in Harry Potter, now Harry Stephens. They live in the United States."
"First Ones! The Immortals? Why, I thought they were just legend. Surely, you don't mean there are actually immortal magic users out in the world," exclaimed Flitwick, his eyes round with excitement.
"They are indeed more than legend," responded Albus. "Mr. Potter was taken from his muggle relatives home by his grandfather of some unknown generations, someone who claims to have been around when Hogwarts was first built and who apparently went by the name of Merlin at the time."
"Oh please, they don't expect us to believe that Potter is descended from Merlin," sneered the Potions Master.
"His adopted mother incapacitated me without a wand or an incantation. She merely spoke into the air asking for her father, and he appeared with thunder and lightning. My wand was removed and I was forcibly sent back to my office here from their home in the United States."
"Forced international apparition? I didn't think that was even possible," exclaimed Minerva.
"Apparently it is for them. I was just grateful to find my wand back in its holster when I arrived in my office."
"So why the owl and letter?" asked Minerva. "Albus, after all that did you still attempt to interfere?"
Albus looked over his glasses at the Transfiguration professor. "I simply offered to help young Harry learn of his birth parents heritage and let them know he was on our rolls when he turns eleven."
"He's in America," protested Snape. "Why would he come to Hogwarts if he's in not even in Britain!"
"Because he's been on our rolls since he was born. And because we need him. I can't say anything else, but trust me when I say that it is vital that Harry Potter, now Stephens attends Hogwarts." He looked again at the floating parchment. "However, the Stephens have requested that we not contact them again until young Harry himself initiates contact." He sighed heavily, not sure of how he could persuade the boy to fight Voldemort when he reappeared if he had no ties to Britain or British wizarding world.
"That's that then," smirked the Potions Master. "Perhaps that is the end of the Potters and the precious Boy-Who-Lived. Let him live his pampered life with the so-called Immortals and leave us to our own lives."
"Daddy!" called Samantha Stephens. With a roll of thunder and several explosions of smoke, the very dapper Maurice appeared in the Stephens living room.
"How are you, my dear," he said with a smile and opened arms. He soon had an armful of his daughter and received a kiss on his cheek.
"I'm fine, thank you, Daddy. But I wanted to ask for some help today. Darrin took the children to a movie, and then to see his parents. I wanted to see if you would like to take me to see Hogwarts."
"Hogwarts? The school with the Headmaster that attempted to abduct my grandson," intoned Maurice with menace in his voice.
"The same one," Samantha said with a nod. "They usually start their magical training at eleven, and since that's only a year away, I wanted to get a feel for the school, the teachers and the classes."
"Hrmph, starting magical training so late. One wonders why they bother at all, but I suppose the wand wavers have no control until that age, so what else can one do." He thought about it for a moment and then nodded. "Very well, my dear. I will accompany you. Invisible, I assume?"
"Yes Daddy," she responded with a smile. "And thank you." She left a note for Darrin saying that she would be late, and then two departed for Scotland.
Over the course of the day, they checked out each class and teacher. They had no problem with Professors Babbling, Flitwick, McGonagall, or Vector. Each of them held the student's interest, and they were firm, but fair teachers. Samantha was surprised that Professor Sprout only seemed to teach practical Herbology and nothing about Botany while Professor Kettleburn seems too accident prone to be a competent teacher, if his missing limbs were any indication. However, the two monitoring the classes were appalled at three of the teachers. Professors Binns, Trelawney and Snape were found to be terrible teachers and neither saw any possibility that Harry could learn anything from any of them.
"I find it impossible to believe that they have nothing in Literature or Languages," said Samantha to her father at the end of the day, "much less no Mathematics except for an optional Arithmancy class,or any type of physical education. I suppose they don't believe in Science, although that seems rather short-sighted."
"Even worse, my dear, is that there are no Fine Arts whatsoever," objected Maurice. "No theatre, no chorale groups, no painting, no sculpture, no dance…what were those wand wavers thinking to remove those classes over the years? I am not certain how I feel about a grandson of mine attending a school lacking so many basic elements. And with those teachers…a ghost who puts the children to sleep, a questionable seer who is surrounded by cheap incense and that Potions Master…incompetent bully seems to describe him the best."
Once he left his daughter, Maurice ruminated on the school and its teachers. If his grandson was going to attend that school, and he fully intended to argue against it, the boy needed more protection. With a sly smirk, he cast a spell to transport him back to the school's creation. He had originally helped set some of the school's protections, but decided that a few enhancements were needed, especially after seeing some of the staff that could have access to his grandson. He quietly updated the protections and made sure they would survive the passing centuries.
Although Harry didn't initiate the contact, he still received a letter that said he had been accepted into the school for "witchcraft and wizardry". After talking to his family, he decided to try one term at Hogwarts, mostly through curiosity about wand wavers and a mild desire to see and experience situations similar to what his birth parents did. However, he only agreed to attend if he was listed and referred to only as Harrison Stephens and only if he merely attended classes; he refused to be a boarder. Instead, he offered to arrive either for or immediately after breakfast and return home after the last class of the day in time for dinner with his family.
Darrin and Samantha met with the principal and his sixth grade teacher to let them know that Harry had an opportunity to study abroad for a time, but that he wanted to continue with his current studies. After consideration, the two educators agreed to allow Harry to study independently and complete the assignments his sister will give him. "That won't leave you much time, Harry," Darrin warned him. "You'll probably spend a lot of the evening and weekends doing homework for two schools. Plus, as the school thinks you're staying in Scotland, you won't be able to play with your friends. Are you sure you're going to be all right with that?"
"I think so, Dad. Unless Hogwarts is really spectacular, I just don't see how it can compare to regular school and our 'extra' lessons, so doubt I'll be there more than a year. Even so, I would like to just experience it for a while."
With that understanding, Harry was scheduled to attend Hogwarts on September 1st.
"You know, Harry," Tabitha said as they sat on the plane to visit London. "If something happens to you there, I can pop over in no time."
"Same for me, Sis. No one messes with a Stephens without messing with the whole family." Both children grinned at each other.
Once settled in to the Chesterfield Mayfair Hotel, the family laid out the plans for their two week vacation. Darrin smiled at the children and said, "First we'll visit that Diagon Alley and get all of Harry's school supplies. After that, we'll be regular tourists. We'll see the Tower of London, Kensington Palace, St. Paul's Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, and Windsor Castle. Tabitha, what are your choices?"
The blonde girl exclaimed enthusiastically, "London Bridge, and the Zoo, and the Jewel Tower!"
"Okay, how about you, Harry?"
Harry ginned and said, "Shakespeare's Globe Theatre or Grandpapa wouldn't forgive me, and the Thames river boat cruise!"
Their younger brother Adam was too small to voice any options, but Tabitha and Harry thought he might enjoy the Zoo as well from his stroller.
With the agenda set for the next week, the family found an old pub named The Leaky Cauldron, and found their way to Diagon Alley, ignoring the sniffs of those in the pub who didn't approve of their muggle clothing.
"Money first," Darrin suggested, so the family headed towards the large white structure named Gringotts. The two goblins guarding the door blinked at the family and then gave them a half-bow. Samantha returned the gesture, and the rest of the family followed her lead. Unknown to them, the goblins were able to recognize the magic of the family, even if the male was non-magical, and treated the family with deference. When they reached a teller, Samantha smiled and said, "We want to exchange either American dollars or British Pounds for galleons."
The other customers who had visibly sneered at the so-called Muggles were stunned when the teller bowed respectfully and said, "Of course, Lady. Gringotts is honored to serve you." In a short time, they were back on the street.
"How about looking in the bookstore first," asked Tabitha as she tried to drag her father in that direction.
"Fine," he said laughing and they entered Flourish and Blotts Booksellers.
Harry strolled through the shelves, inspecting various titles. Suddenly a shelf of books caught his eye. "Mom!" he called out. "Dad! You've got to see this!"
The shock in his voice brought his parents quickly to his side. The shelf he was staring at was filled with books like "Harry Potter and the Dragon's Gold" and "Harry Potter, Magic's Chosen". Each book had a drawing of a dark-haired boy with a large lightning bolt etched on his forehead, wearing glasses from which shown bright green eyes.
"What is this?" he asked in a horrified whisper. "Why are there books with my birth name? Who gave them permission to use my name like this!"
"Your mother and I never did," confirmed his father angrily. He picked up the books to search for an author's name, but none was listed. "And apparently the author realized how much trouble they would be in, since they didn't dare sign their name to this trash."
"Don't worry, Harry," his mother said with a gentle smile. "Your father and I will deal with this. Why don't you see if you can find some books that Grandmama and Grandpapa would like?"
Samantha waited until Harry wandered off out of earshot before she turned to her husband with angry eyes. "How dare they! How dare they make him some type of icon! He's been set up to be a perfect hero in the making, and they'll rip him apart if he chooses to be a normal little boy!"
"Sam, I know I don't usually like you using a lot of…", he paused and used his fingers to move his nose back and forth, "but in this instance, I think we need to know who did this and why. How can we protect Harry if we don't know who's doing this?"
After the book store, they headed to Ollivander's who supplied wands to the British community. Samantha was skeptical about Harry having a wand, but decided to see what happened. The children all felt the aura of the shopkeeper and turned to face him once they entered, although Darrin jumped at the man's softly spoken "Good morning."
The man looked them over and asked "Two wands today?"
"No, just one for our son," Darrin responded. He looked about the dusty shop dubiously.
"Very well, what is your wand hand young man," asked Ollivander as he brought out a tape measure.
"I don't have one. I usually just perform the magic. But my letter to Hogwarts said a wand was required," grumbled Harry.
Ollivander stared at the boy, his eyes almost glowing before they widened dramatically. "Is it possible," he whispered. He turned to look at the others, raising an eyebrow when he looked at Darrin. "I see…no, I imagine none of you truly need a wand." He looked back at Harry. "In fact, I'm not even certain that you could channel your magic through a standard wand without burning it out. Possibly a staff, but even then…" He paused and stared off into space as he considered.
"We don't want Harry to draw more attention than necessary," Samantha responded.
The elderly man nodded, "Understood. Perhaps a staff shrunk down to the size of a wand?" He looked at Samantha. "I'm sure you could modify the size."
The blonde woman smiled at him. "Good idea. What do you need?"
Ollivander changed the sign on the door to "Closed" and brought them to the back of his shop. "I need young Mr…." He paused to look at Harry quizzically.
"Stephens," Harry supplied with a smile.
"Yes, I need young Mr. Stephens to let his magic find compatible materials. Just select everything that feels 'right' to you."
Harry wandered around the room, finally selecting a large branch. Then he moved along the walls, selecting different items that called to him, putting half a dozen items on the work table.
"Oh, very nice," complimented Ollivander, almost wheezing in excitement. "This will be a fine project for me. You have a thestral hair complemented by a unicorn hair, both freely given. You have an Augery feather balanced by a Griffin feather and dragon blood complemented by phoenix tears. A very good balance overall." The old man seemed very enthusiastic about the challenge. "This will take several weeks to fully create, but it should be done in time for the start of the Hogwarts term."
The family left the odd old man's shop after making arrangements to pick up the staff on September 1st. Out on the street, Tabitha whispered, "Are all older wand wavers…err…wizards so creepy? Dumbledore was and now this guy."
"He was a bit strange, wasn't he," whispered Harry back. "I hope none of the school's teachers are that weird."
They didn't bother with a trunk, as Harry would be commuting, but did pick up a good backpack with what were called "featherlight" charms. After looking at telescopes, Darrin suggested they buy one in London, as the ones in Diagon Alley didn't see to offer as much as modern telescopes should.
Harry tried to refuse to buy a quill, until Tabitha finally whispered that he could just enchant it to write, like Aunt Hagatha did. He grumbled, but agreed, although he stated that he intended to bring pencils and pens with him as well.
From there, they moved on to Harry's school uniform at a shop called Madam Malkin's. Once inside, Harry was quickly settled on a stool, while a tape measure moved on its own around his body. He had to laugh as it tickled him.
When their shopping was done and they returned to the hotel, Darrin took the children down to the pool after a whispered conversation with his wife. Once they had left, Samantha cast a spell summoning the writers of the fiction books about Harry Potter. A thirty-something man appeared in the room along with a slightly older woman. The man had golden curls, bright blue eyes and unnaturally white teeth and was dressed like a dandy. The woman had unnaturally light blonde hair and green eyes, heavily penciled eyebrows, bright red painted lips and jeweled spectacles. Before either could react, they found themselves pushed into chairs and unable to move, while an obviously angry and powerful witch stood over them.
"Now, I want to know exactly why you wrote all those ridiculous books about Harry Potter and where you got those images of him."
A quick truth spell later, and they admitted that the stories were all about putting gold in their pockets and creating an idol for the world that they hoped to cash in on later. The pictures came from descriptions given in an interview by Albus Dumbledore after You-Know-Who's demise, that described the lightning bolt scar. As he was known to resemble his father with his mother's eyes, an artist simply made a scarred younger version of James Potter for the covers.
"I see," Samantha said coldly. "Let me tell you what's going to happen now. You will publicly admit that every story was a hoax and then you will donate every single galleon of profit that you received to a charity to help widows and orphans of the war. And you will never attempt to cash in on the name or fame of Harry Potter again." They shuddered under the force of her magic and weakly nodded their agreement.
Harry Potter Stories a Hoax!
In a joint press conference today, Gilderoy Lockhart, author of nine best-selling books, and Rita Skeeter, well-known journalist for the Daily Prophet, admitted that they collaborated on writing the Harry Potter, Boy Hero series. They admitted that they had never spoken with the Boy-Who-Lived, nor had they interviewed anyone who knew him after the death of his parents, James and Lily Potter. They further confessed to making everything up, and that they did not have the permission of the boy's guardians to use his name or image.
"It never occurred to us that we were creating a public image that no normal child could hope to attain," said a very nervous Lockhart, who continually looked around the room and over his shoulder. "What we did was very wrong and we're very sorry," he added.
A tense Rita Skeeter agreed, although she also said, "I suppose it was too much for us to hope that our readers recognized the stories were purely fiction. As a result, we are planning to donate all profits to a charity to help widows and orphans of the war."
Where was the Boy-Who-Lived taken after the tragic death of his parents? Albus Dumbledore was reported to have placed him with family members, but who they were was unknown. Our hero hasn't been seen in the Wizarding world since that night. However, he should be attending Hogwarts this year, so we look forward to his re-introduction to society.
"Well, that didn't help as much as I hoped," Darrin admitted after putting down the Daily Prophet they had subscribed to. "They still seem to see him as a celebrity rather than a normal little boy. They don't even seem to realize what they're doing."
"I know, sweetheart," Samantha said, pouring him another cup of coffee. "But believe me, he'll be fully protected when he goes to Hogwarts. Daddy added a few protections for him at the school."
Darrin looked at his wife in surprise and then resolutely shook his head. "I don't want to know," he said. "As long as it keeps Harry safe, that's enough for me."
Samantha smiled behind her own coffee cup. Darrin didn't need to know that Maurice went back in time to the founding of Howarts and added a series of protections for his grandson.
Hogwarts: A History
"Mom," Harry said as he walked into the kitchen carrying the large 'Hogwarts: A History' book. He had been studiously reading the books they obtained in Diagon Alley ever since their return.
"What is it, dear," she asked, looking up with a smile before returning to cutting celery for the chicken salad she was making for lunch.
"I've been reading this history. It's pretty interesting, because it goes into quite a few things, including famous graduates." He looked at his mother with a frown. "James and Lily Potter are mentioned as well as their 'sacrifice' for the sake of the Wizarding World. After all those ridiculous 'Boy Hero' stories, I'll bet the wand wavers expect me to be their hero or sacrifice, depending on the situation." His voice held a mixture of disgust and fear.
Samantha smothered a sigh. She and Darrin had hoped Harry would never realize how the wand wavers perceived him, but their boy was very intelligent. Even through her disappointment that he knew, she felt some pride at his cleverness. "I wouldn't be surprised, Harry. Many people believe whatever they read. Even though the 'Boy Hero' stories were debunked, there is still quite a bit of interest in you. However, you know that you don't need to conform to the expectations of strangers."
"I know, Mom. It's just…annoying, you know?" He turned over to a bookmark and frowned again. "I also found out that over the last century or so, two of the houses at Hogwarts have developed a really nasty rivalry; the Houses of Slytherin and Gryffindor. If you're in one of those Houses, the peer pressure keeps you from being friends with someone in the rival House, and there are many reports of fights in the hallways." He looked up at his mother with confusion in his eyes. "I don't understand. Why is that type of rivalry even allowed? Shouldn't the Principal and the teachers stop it?"
"Hogwarts has a Headmaster rather than a Principal, but yes, he should control it. While healthy competition can be constructive, it's easy to cross the line into something unpleasant and even harmful. I don't know why it hasn't been stopped if it's so well known that it's documented in the book."
"Huh, I guess everyone makes mistakes, but you'd like to think that the person in charge has everyone's best interests in mind. I'm not sure this Headmaster guy does. I still remember him coming here when I was younger. He was planning to kidnap me, wasn't he?" Harry had thought about it from his older and more mature perspective (he was eleven after all!) and had realized that was what the old man had planned.
"You know that no one in this family would ever let someone kidnap you," Samantha said and was relieved to see Harry smile in relief and nod. "About Mr. Dumbledore, you won't know for sure what his motives are until you're actually there and can see what's really happening. But I don't want you to limit your friends based on something as superficial as a House. That would be as silly as basing it on the color of their hair or skin."
"Don't worry, Mom," Harry grinned. "You and Dad taught me better than that." He looked appreciatively at the chicken salad. "Is lunch almost ready?"
Samantha ruffled his hair. "Yes, call your sister and then set the table for me, please."
Harry goes to Hogwarts
Even though he would be home for dinner that night, the entire Stephens family accompanied him to the train gate, courtesy of his mother. He had a backpack containing his books and supplies, as well as some snacks for later. Once settled in an empty compartment on the train, he settled in and began to read.
Only minutes before the train left, the noise outside reached a manic level as families rushed to put their children on the train before it departed. A noisy family of redheads was among the crowd. Shortly after they boarded the train, a young redhead entered his compartment.
"Mind if I sit here," he asked. "There's no where else open." Harry looked up in surprise as the train seemed rather large, but shrugged agreeably and helped the boy store his trunk.
"I'm Ron Weasley," the boy said with a grin. "I'll be a First Year this year. What about you?"
"Harry Stephens," he replied. "I'm trying out the school for a term to see whether I want to continue or not."
"Hey, are you a Yank," asked the redhead. "You have a funny accent."
"Yes, I was raised in the U.S. by my adopted parents, although my birth parents were British."
"What brings you here then? Aren't there magic schools in America?"
"I received an acceptance letter," Harry shrugged. "Since my birth parents attended the school, and my parents were OK with it, I decided to give it a try. My sister was a bit upset that I wasn't attending school with her, so who knows? I might change again to join her back in the States."
Ron quickly lost interest in Harry once he discovered the other boy wan't interested in Quidditch, but in Muggle games called baseball and soccer. He left to find his brothers after a while, leaving Harry to read in peace.
The train arrived at a small station in a village called Hogsmeade. Harry could see some carriages off to one side, but a very large man called for the First Years to follow him. Harry was amused to see that they had to take boats across a lake to reach the castle. He thought it was a bit theatrical, but had to admit that the castle looked impressive reflected in the water. Once inside, a stern looking older woman who was introduced as Professor McGonagall who announced that they would be brought into the Hall for their Sorting, and announced the names of the four Houses.
Harry was surprised at the exclamations of the other students at the ceiling in the large Hall. It seemed to be a simple enchanted window, but perhaps the size is what surprised them. He mentally shrugged and told himself not to be so judgmental. After they all entered the Hall, Professor McGonagall brought out a stool with a hat on it that was enchanted to sing a song. The Professor called out name after name from her student list, and the students were put under the hat, which then called out a House name.
When she reached 'Stephens', Minerva McGonagall tried not to frown. The boy had accepted a position at the school with the distinct constraint that he was to be known only as Harrison Stephens, and that if they couldn't honor that, he would have to decline their invitation.
However, in a staff meeting the previous day, Albus had announced to the entire staff that Harry Potter would be attending the school under the name Harry Stephens. He had also convinced her to add Potter to his name during the Sorting Ceremony, citing that it would be only once and that it was the name under which he had been enrolled at his birth. With an internal grimace, she called out "Potter-Stephens, Harry".
Harry frowned at the woman and then crossed his arms over his chest. He and his parents had made it very plain that he would only attend Hogwarts as a day student by the name of Harrison Stephens. The very idea that the Deputy Headmistress ignored the agreement – or perhaps she did so at the instigation of the Headmaster – was offensive and downright rude! He looked at the Headmaster and narrowed his eyes at the pleased and cheerful smile on the elderly man.
McGonagall looked up from her parchment, straight into the very angry green eyes of the dark-haired boy. His ramrod stiff back and crossed arms showed that he had no intention of responding to the name. Excited whispers broke out in the hall, "Did she say Potter?" "Is Harry Potter here?" Students began standing up to peer at the small group of unsorted students.
By this time, Harry was considering not attending Hogwarts at all. The staff had proven untrustworthy and the students were acting as if he was an exotic animal in a zoo.
"Potter-Stephens, Harry," McGonagall tried again, knowing by the angry stance of the boy that it was futile.
"As the Deputy Headmistress, you should know better," the hat said suddenly, quieting the hall in an instant. The hat never spoke out like that! "You and the Headmaster are now in violation of the Hogwarts Charter, and a warning is placed on each of your records. Three warnings will result in probation."
McGonagall's eyes widened and she turned to look at Dumbledore. The surprise on his face was visible for only a few moments, before he resumed his normal grandfatherly appearance. "Why don't you continue on, Professor McGonagall," he said into the silence in the Hall.
"Stephens, Harrison", called out the Deputy Headmistress, her face grim. She had a warning on her record because Albus insisted that the Stephens boy be called by a hyphenated name!
Harry lowered his arms and stepped forward, anger still visible on his face. "Is that Harry Potter," the whispers continued. "Is he coming under an assumed name?"
He stalked to the stool and glared at the Deputy Headmistress before the hat settled down on his head. "Good evening, Mr. Stephens," murmured the hat into his mind. "I see that you're not a normal student at all, are you? Is there even any reason for you to be here?"
"I had planned to come just to experience what my birth parents did, but now I'm seriously questioning that decision," rejoined Harry mentally. "We had an agreement, that I would only come under my legal name, and they just decided to ignore that agreement. That's the same as lying to me! And since you gave them both a warning, they were both in on it!"
"Quite right, Mr. Stephens," the hat agreed. "They were publicly rebuked. I see you are fully aware of your rights under the Hogwarts Charter?"
"Yes, Grandpapa made sure I was well acquainted with it. He thought I would need its protections from certain members of the staff. I can understand his concern, now."
"Hogwarts will ensure the charter is upheld, Mr. Stephens, no worry about that. Now, where shall we sort you? By coming all the way to another country you demonstrated the bravery for Gryffindor."
"Isn't Professor McGonagall Head of that House? I have no reason to trust or respect her anymore, so I absolutely won't go to Gryffindor."
"That's a shame, Mr. Stephens. You have the intelligence for Ravenclaw, but you don't live for learning. You have the ambition for Slytherin, but perhaps not the temperament. You certainly have the loyalty of Hufflepuff, and you aren't afraid of hard work since you intend to keep up with your non-magical schooling. Wait, what is this?" Harry felt the hat rummage through a few memories and an image of Grandpapa Maurice appeared in his mind. "He is your Grandfather? Oh, my. Well, in that case, it can only be Hufflepuff!"
Harry returned the hat to the stool and inclined his head to it. The hat in returned tilted the pointy part of itself back to the boy. Harry hurried over to the Hufflepuff table, where the students were clapping. He didn't hear the hat mutter to McGonagall, "You just lost yourself a lion cub through your actions, Minerva."
"Welcome to Hufflepuff," said a blonde boy somewhat pompously as Harry sat down at the table. "I am Ernie MacMillan." He lost a bit of his snobbishness to ask curiously, "Are you really Harry Potter?"
"Thank you for the welcome, Ernie. My name is Harrison Stephens," replied Harry calmly. "But please call me Harry."
"I'm Zacharias Smith," interjected a brown-haired boy. "Are you a Yank? You have an accent."
"Yes, my family lives in the state of New York, on the eastern coast of the U.S." admitted Harry. "How about you? Where is your family?"
"But you're not Harry Potter," asked Hannah Abbott, somewhat disappointed.
Harry chuckled and pointed to his unmarked forehead. "No lightning bolt here. I'm just a boy from the States." He was glad that Dr. Bombay removed the scar and the parasite that had been feeding off his magic when he was still a child.
No one noticed that he never really answered the question about being Harry Potter. With him being a Yank, that seemed pretty silly though. Everyone knew the Boy-Who-Lived was being brought up in a castle somewhere being trained to fill his role as a hero!
Harry chatted with the other First Year students finding that the Hufflepuff year consisted of two girls, Hannah and Susan, and four other boys, Ernie, Justin, Wayne, and Zacharias. When dinner was finished, he was surprised at a warning from the Headmaster to stay away from the third floor or face a most painful death. "I wonder what Mom and Dad will think about that," he wondered. "The Headmaster doesn't seem to be all 'there'".
When the Feast was done and the students are on the way to the Dorm, Harry began heading to the main Entrance. The other Hufflepuffs called to him, but he grinned and said, "I'm only a day student. I go home every night, and return in time for announcements at breakfast. Good thing too, or there would be five of us sharing the boy's dorms. That would be pretty crowded."
"Isn't your family across the ocean in the United States," asked Justin Finch-Fletchey. "How can you go home every day?"
Family magic," Harry responded. "I can't talk about it." The purebloods noded their heads. Family Magic was always kept confidential to the Family.
An Angry Mother ™ visits the Headmaster
Albus Dumbledore was reviewing some paperwork when a slight sound caught his attention. Samantha Stephens was in front of him with her arms crossed, wearing a long black gown. She appeared to be more of a magical powerhouse than a wife and mother.
"You'll have to excuse me for coming uninvited and without notice, Headmaster," she said coldly, "but I heard about a most disturbing story from my son this evening."
"You are always welcome, Mrs. Stephens," Albus said genially, while thinking the exact opposite.
"Firstly, I have to ask - are you a man of honor or not?"
Albus knew exactly what the irritated mother meant, but tried to look innocent. "I have always tried to act honorably," he prevaricated.
"You tried to expose my son as Harry Potter. You broke faith with him and acted dishonorably. My son trusts easily the first time, Mr. Dumbledore, but once that trust is broken, it is rarely returned."
"I certainly had no intention…" the elderly wizard began, but was cut off by the angry mother.
"My second question is whether this is a school or not?"
"Of course. Please, Mrs. Stephens, have a seat."
Samantha waved away the offer. "And is the welfare of the children entrusted to your care your primary priority?"
Albus gave her his most grandfatherly smile. "That and their education, of course."
"Then why is there anything inside this so-called school that will cause any child 'a most painful death'? I find the very concept criminal and wonder what ever other parent thinks about it."
"Mrs. Stephens, the children were warned most explicitly to stay away from that particular area of the school."
"Oh for…" Samantha stared at him in disbelief. "Are you so old that you don't remember what it is like being a child? You basically told them there is a puzzle in the school. They have every right to believe that the staff of this school will keep them safe, so would obviously believe that nothing really serious would happen to them if they investigated. Don't you realize that you essentially pointed them right at the danger?"
"But…they were told…" Albus tried to protest.
She glared coldly at the Headmaster. "You obviously aren't a parent. Let me tell you what's going to happen, Headmaster. You will remove the danger immediately, or I will do so for you. I will not permit my son to attend a school that disregards the safety of its students." She moved forward several steps and an unseen wind caused her hair to dance across her shoulders. "If you cannot or will not guarantee the safety of the children entrusted to you, I will make sure their safety is no longer your responsibility."
The pressure in the room increased, leaving Dumbledore surprised at the sheer power the woman demonstrated. "You will have it gone within the next twenty-four hours, or I go through this school myself, removing anything that I consider a danger to the safety and well-being of the students here." With that warning, she simply blinked out of existence, leaving a shaken Headmaster behind.
He didn't know if he could disarm all the traps within 24 hours, but he didn't want an angry mother deciding to go through his school. Well, perhaps it would be better to put the Stone under a Fidelius charm in the safe in his office with him as the secret keeper.
The DADA Professor
When Harry reached home the night after his first DADA class, he waited while Tabitha talked about her day at school, and then his father turned and asked about his day.
"It was pretty good, although our Defense instructor is really odd. He wears a turban that stinks of garlic and stutters so badly, none of the students can understand him. But what's odder than that, is that he has two totally different auras." He turned to his mother. "Does that mean he's got a split personality?"
"If the two auras are alike, with only variations, it could be multiple personalities. If they are different, then he could be possessed," his mother replied with a frown, her eyes meeting her husband's.
"Neither option is what I expect from an expensive boarding school," his father said. "If he seems at all threatening, I want you out of there immediately, and tell your mother."
"Yes sir," Harry acknowledged. He had to admit that it was nice having his parents worry about him, even if he was already eleven.
First Potions Class
Harry sat next to Ernie MacMillian and Wayne Hopkins. They had read the first two chapters of the Potions book in preparation for the class.
Harry was amused that Potions was taught down in a dungeon, and made a note to ask his Grandpapa about whether they had added proper venting when the castle was built. His Aunt Hagatha trained all three Stephens children in proper brewing and was adamant about sufficient venting, and the cold dark room lined with glass jars filled with slimy contents did nothing to reassure him that the potions fumes were not breathed in by the students.
Potions Master Snape was a tall pale-faced man with black shoulder length hair and black eyes. He wore a scowl on his face as if it was a permanent feature. Harry noticed that a dark aura was on his left forearm and twisted into the man's magic and life force.
Snape began by taking the roll call, and stopped at Harry's name. "Ah yes, our new…celebrity. Too ashamed to use your father's name, Stephens? Not that I can blame you."
"I am using my Father's name, sir," Harry said calmly. "My father is Darrin Stephens. I am Harrison Stephens, although I go by Harry to my friends and family."
"I'm talking of your birth Father, James Potter," snarled the professor. "The most obnoxious, arrogant pampered prince to ever strut these halls. It's no surprise you don't claim a relationship to that self-important prat."
The students gasped and looked at Harry again. Was he really Harry Potter? He had insisted he was Harrison Stephens and he was a Yank!
Harry sighed and looked at the Professor with disappointment in his eyes before saying, "Hogwarts Charter Violation, Stephens, First Year, Professor Snape, Potions Master. Deliberately insulting family members and violating the privacy of a student."
Snape tried to interrupt the boy while he talked, but Harry continued through to the end. To everyone's surprise, a voice responded, "Investigating." A moment later, it responded, "Confirmed Charter violation. Professor Severus Snape, you now have a warning on your record. Three warnings will place you on probation." There was silence in the room, as everyone either gaped at the infuriated professor or the calm-faced boy.
"Enough! Potter, ten points from Hufflepuff and detention with me tonight!"
"My name is Harrison Stephens, Professor. And for what reason are you assigning a detention," asked Harry calmly.
"Cheek and lack of respect to a Professor, you insolent whelp," snarled the man.
Harry looked at him in disappointment yet again, and shook his head. "Hogwarts, Charter violation. Stephens, First Year…" At this point, Snape drew his wand and attempted to silence the boy, but he continued on. "Professor Snape, Potions Master. Undeserved point reductions and detention, refusal to call me by my proper name, and personal insults."
"Investigating," the disembodied voice returned. "Confirmed Charter violation. Professor Severus Snape, this is the second warning on your record. Three warnings will place you on probation."
Into the shocked silence, Harry continued, "Hogwarts, Charter Violation. Stephens, First Year…" By now, Snape realized that no silencing spell was going to work on the brat and stalked over to his chair, grabbed the boy and pulled him from the chair. Harry blinked and the entire class was frozen in place. Harry stepped away from the Potions Master and continued, "Professor Snape, Potions Master. Drew his wand and attempted to cast a silencing spell on me to prevent me from reporting his second violation. Then he physically grabbed me to prevent reporting the third violation."
"Investigating," the voice responded yet again. Harry stepped to the back of the room, well out of the Professor's reach, and then blinked again. Movement resumed in the class. "Confirmed Charter violation. Professor Severus Snape, this was your third violation." Snape looked at his empty hands and then around the classroom until he found the target of his frustration. He immediately began stalking towards the boy, the intent to cause physical harm apparent on his face.
The unseen voice continued, "You are now on probation. You may not give or deduct points, assign or oversee detentions unsupervised until the probation is revoked. If you receive a warning while on probation, you will be immediately suspended and expelled from Hogwarts for the duration of your unpaid suspension."
Snape stopped just before he grabbed the arrogant brat again. Albus would have his head if he was expelled from the school at the start of the year. Even worse, there were still followers of the Dark Lord who were furious at Dumbledore's defense of him as a spy ten years ago who would love to catch him off the safety of the grounds.
With a hate-filled glare at the infuriating spoiled brat, he turned back to the class. "Everyone in your seats! You will read the first two chapters of the book for the remainder of the class. You will have no reason to speak. If you complete your assignment, you will re-read it." He glared around the room. "Well, what are you waiting for?"
The students scrambled to open their books, while Harry strolled back to his seat. He shook his head and wondered whether he wanted to take classes here. The Headmaster and Deputy Headmaster had violated his privacy and their agreement, so they couldn't be trusted. The Potions Master was an unprofessional bully. He couldn't imagine the principal of his regular school allowing any teacher to behave so badly. And worse, based on the side looks his fellow students were giving him, they considered Harry Potter to be somewhat like an animal in the zoo.
Snape stormed to Dumbledore's office immediately after the First Year class was out. "Albus!" he bellowed as he entered the Headmaster's office, "a 'voice' declared that I was on probation after something the Potter brat said. I demand to know what this is about and what you intend to do about it."
One of the former Headmasters snorted and shook his head. Dumbledore looked at the fourteenth century Headmaster, Ambrose Swott. "Yes, Ambrose, did you have something to add?"
"It is clearly evident that an original Charter of Hogwarts is not in your possession." He shook his head again at the current Headmaster. "The only other reasonable theorem is that you have deliberately ignored the terms and conditions contained therein."
"I have a copy of the Hogwart's Charter," Dumbledore said, silently summoning an ancient scroll to him.
"And the date upon it," asked Swott.
Dumbledore unrolled the scroll and said, "It is dated Sixteen Hundred and Fifty Six."
"A revised version created after my time, then," responded Swott. "In close proximity to the conclusion of the document should be the clause that permits a student to directly appeal to Hogwarts if he or she is sanctioned unfairly by a staff member of Hogwarts. Hogwarts herself will assess the preceding interaction with the named parties and establish whether the Charter was violated. If she decides it was, she may issue warnings, place the staff member on probation, suspend and in the worst cases, terminate the employment of the staff member in question."
He turned towards the painting of Phineus Nigellus Black. "I always wondered why you were not terminated when you acted so unfairly to the students of the school. If they were not cognizant of their prerogative to appeal directly to Hogwarts, that then clarifies how you remained as Headmaster." The portrait of Black glared back at the portrait of the elder Headmaster.
Snape seemed unaware that he was repeating Black's glare at Headmaster Swott. "Are you saying that any student can appeal any point loss or detention to a brainless pile of rocks and undermine the role and discipline of a professor?" Snape was abruptly tossed out of his chair and wound up sprawled on the floor.
Swott smirked, "Apparently she also doesn't appreciate being described as a 'brainless pile of rocks'. However, to answer your rather rudely phrased query, if they appeal but Hogwarts finds no Charter violation, the student's punishment is doubled. She does not tolerate gratuitous use of that clause."
"Enough," said Dumbledore when it appeared the Potions Master was about to argue with the painting. "Severus, if this is truly a matter of the Charter, and Hogwarts herself found you to be in violation…"
"There is no question, Headmaster," interjected an unseen voice. "Professor Snape repeatedly insulted a First Year's family. That is unprofessional and in violation of the Charter. He then attempted to retaliate for his earned warning by taking House points and issuing an unearned detention, also a violation of the Charter. Lastly, he drew his wand on the student and then physically assaulted him to prevent the report of a third violation. Professor Snape is now on probation. He may not give or deduct House points, nor may he issue or oversee detentions unsupervised until his probation is over."
"Thank you, Hogwarts," Dumbledore said in surprise. "What is the period of the probation?"
"Professor Snape is on probation for the remainder of this term. If he receives another warning during that period, he will be summarily suspended and expelled from the castle."
"Headmaster, you aren't going to permit this," exploded the Potions Master.
Dumbledore looked over his glasses at the fuming man. "You drew your wand on a student and then physically assaulted him? Severus, I am very disappointed in you. Even without a copy of the original Charter that forbids such actions, I would have hoped that every professor in this school knew better than to raise a wand to a child, much less lay hands on them. The probation stands, and you will treat every student with professionalism." He sat back in his seat and looked the younger man over carefully. "Unless, of course, you choose to resign from Hogwarts and leave its protections?"
"It's all the Potter spawn's fault," began Snape venomously.
"Enough, Severus. Your own actions brought about these consequences. James Potter is dead; he cannot hear your insults no matter how much you belittle him or his son. If you want to continue to work and reside at Hogwarts, you will treat every student the way you treat your own House."
Snape stalked back to his quarters at the end of the day and threw open the door so that it crashed into the wall behind it.
"Come in, Mr. Snape," said an urbane voice from a chair besides a merrily glowing fireplace.
The Potions Master drew his wand at the unexpected intrusion into his private quarters. Only the Headmaster could access his rooms by overriding his password.
"I said, come in and sit down, Mr. Snape," the voice said, mild irritation now apparent. Snape found abruptly found himself sitting in the second chair by the fireplace, his wand still out, but unable to move a single muscle. The door closed quietly behind him.
"Now, Mr. Snape. We will have a few words. At the very least, I will speak and you will listen." The chair turned enough so that he could see the other occupant of the room. He was an older man, dressed in rich sapphire blue robes embroidered with silver rooms. A staff floated vertically in the air beside him, power emanating off it in waves. "You may address me as Merlin or Sir," the man said with an icy smile.
Through his anger, Severus Snape realized abruptly that the man before him eclipsed him in power as he eclipsed a muggle. "I had a most interesting discussion with my grandson, this evening," the warlock began. "His name is Harrison Stephens."
Snape's fury was replaced with dread as an overwhelming aura unfolded from the powerful man opposite him who continued to smile.
Even Albus was surprised that Severus managed to restrain his vitriol and kept from insulting the students. Although his teaching wasn't any better, students didn't leave his class in tears. However, the Potions Master did have a satisfied sneer on his face as he said "Ten points to Hufflepoint" and the points aren't awarded.
Harry ignored the man and looked forward to the introductory flying class held the second week of classes. He was surprised that the wand wavers hadn't created a spell to let them fly themselves, but still relied on odd items like brooms and carpets.
The class was comprised of First Years of all houses, which Harry thought was a good idea. He watched a bushy-haired Gryffindor girl quoting a book on how to fly and had to fight the grin from appearing on his face. Not everything could be learned from books!
He stood between Justin Finch-Fletchley, a boy from non-magical parents, and Wayne Hopkins, a boy that said he was a "half-blood". Harry couldn't imagine introducing himself that way. He was Harry Stephens, and what else did anyone need to know?
Wayne looked over Harry's shoulder and muttered "Incoming Slytherins". Harry turned his head and noticed a blonde pointy-faced boy flanked by two larger boys. The blonde was looking at him and seemed to be ignoring his two House mates.
"I hear that you're really Harry Potter," the blonde said. "I'm Draco Malfoy, scion of the House of Malfoy. A pity you were sorted into Hufflepuff." The last was said with a sneer at his house mates.
"My name is Harrison Stephens," Harry said firmly. "And the notion of Houses is pretty odd. We don't separate students like that in the States. But even so, I've seen good and bad kids in each of the Houses, so Hufflepuff is as good as any other."
"You'll find that some Houses and Families are better than others," the blonde said pompously. "As a Malfoy, I can help you with that."
"Eh, no thanks. If I can't figure it out on my own, it isn't worth knowing," Harry replied with a grin.
The other boy's eyes narrowed at the perceived slight. "Be careful, or you'll wind up like your parents," Malfoy sneered.
"Happily married with a house in the suburbs and three kids? OK, sounds good to me!" Harry grinned again and then let his face morph into sorrow. "Or aren't you aware of what a happy marriage is? I supposed with a name that means 'bad faith' that could be true. You have my sympathy." Hopkins snickered behind him.
"How dare you say that! When my father hears of this…"
Harry interrupted the ranting boy, "When your father hears…are you seriously telling us that you're a tattletale and proud of it? I thought Slytherin was the house of cunning and ambition! Where is the cunning and ambition in running to Daddy every time something doesn't go your way? Are you really that much of a wuss?"
"I'll have you know that I am a pureblood with a long and honored history, while you are a lowly half-blood whose once pure family was tainted by a filthy mudblood".
He was stunned when Harry burst out laughing. "That's it? That's your threat and excuse? You're a pureblood. Isn't that the same as admitting to being inbred?" He dropped his voice to a stage whisper. "Well, even if your mother is also your aunt and your father is also your cousin, I'm not sure that's really something to brag about."
While many of the purebloods didn't appreciate his comments, most enjoyed seeing the Malfoy prat set down, and chuckled at his strangled fury. He was unable to respond, as Madame Hooch came up then and ordered them into a line.
Harry found the flying itself quite enjoyable, after he repaired the failing spells on his broom and fixed the broken straws. He performed barrel rolls and dives with great abandon, comparing it to the flying he and Tabitha had learned as youngsters. He was surprised when at the end of the class, Madam Hooch said she was going to speak to Professor Sprout about having him try out for the Hufflebuff Quidditch team.
"Excuse me, ma'am, but isn't there a rule that prevents First Years from having their own brooms or participating in the sport?"
"Well, yes, but I'm sure Professor Sprout can convince the Headmaster to make an exception."
"No thank you, ma'am," Harry replied with a serious expression. At the older woman's look of stunned amazement, he continued, "The rule either exists for a reason, such as the safety of the students, or there's no reason for it to exist at all. I prefer not to be part of an exception, especially if the rule exists for my own protection." He paused to grin at her shock, before adding, "Besides, I'm only a day student. I wouldn't be able to participate in practices and training, and that wouldn't be fair to the other members of the team."
As the end of October arrived, his fellow Hufflepuffs encouraged Harry to attend the Halloween feast, so he stayed longer than usual that day. He figured that he would still be in time to help Tabitha escort their little brother Adam around the neighborhood for Trick-or-Treating, something he enjoyed doing.
During the feast, a nearly hysterical Professor Quirrell burst into the Great Hall, announced that a troll was in the dungeons and then fainted. Dumbledore immediately sent everyone out of the Great Hall to their dorms.
Harry approached a sixth year Hufflepuff prefect and said, "Excuse me. Since the Hufflepuff and Slytherin dorms are in the dungeons, why would we want to leave the safety of the Great Hall?"
"The Headmaster wouldn't send out to the dorms if it wasn't safe," the prefect responded. He then urged the House out and towards the stairs. Harry trailed along after them shaking his head.
He mutters a brief spell to show magical footprints, and noticed when the students crossed the path of a large creature heading away from the dungeon. He tried to point it out to the prefect, but was shushed and told to hurry along. With a grumble, he let the others precede him, and then turned and followed the trail.
He could tell he was getting closer when a nasty smell became strong and stronger, until he was practically gagging. He hurried as he heard a crash and a terrified scream coming from a girl's bathroom. He burst into the room in time to see a twelve foot troll attempting to bash a little girl with a monstrous club.
"I hope Mom doesn't think I'm showing off," he thought to himself as he blinked at the rampaging creature. The immediate silence was broken only by the gasping and whimpering of the girl that was trying to hide under a sink.
Harry strolled over and picked up the now twelve-inch stuffed troll. "You can come out now," he said to the girl, looking at the destroyed stalls the troll had smashed. When there was no movement, he bent down to look at the terrified girl. "It's all over, he's gone and you're safe," he said soothingly, much like he would if Adam had been frightened by something.
"Where…where is it," the bushy-haired girl gasped in a trembling voice.
Harry held up the stuffed troll. "He's no threat to anyone," he reassured her.
The girl stared at the toy and then back at Harry. Her terror was replaced by confusion and then by a fierce curiosity. "How did you do that? Wouldn't that be like a seventh year spell? And aren't trolls really resistant to magic?" She crawled out from under the sink and stared at him in fascination. "What spell did you use? I don't even see your wand out. Can you teach me how to do that?" The sentences tumbled out one after another.
Harry grinned at the girl who was now fixated on the stuffed troll. He turned as the door slammed open and several teachers crowded the entry way, their wands out. They took in the damage and then looked at the two students.
"What happened here," demanded Professor McGonagall.
"The troll didn't stay in the dungeon," Harry replied. "He found this girl and was trying to crush her."
"And what are you doing here, Mr. Stephens," she asked severely. "Why aren't you in the Hufflepuff dorms?"
Harry shrugged. "I saw the trail the creature left, but the prefects wouldn't listen to me, so I followed it." He pushed the stuffed toy into her hands and then looked at the Deputy Headmistress with a raised eyebrow. "Shouldn't the school wards have kept out a dangerous creature? And if so, doesn't that mean that they are either failing or that someone in authority overrode them?"
The Deputy Headmistress looked at him in shock, and was momentarily rendered speechless.
Harry shrugged, turned back to the girl and said, "Since they haven't asked, are you hurt at all? Do you need to go to the Infirmary?"
The girl looked at him with wide eyes, obviously surprised at his tone to the stern professor. "I think I'm all right. I mean, I'll probably have a few scrapes and bruises tomorrow, but.."
Professor McGonagall interrupted, "I will see to Miss Granger, Mr. Stephens." She turned and nodded to the girl. "Come along, let's let Madame Pomfrey look you over to make sure you're all right."
Professor Snape looked at the stuffed troll toy in her hands and back at the Po…Stephens boy. If he could do that at eleven, then what could the adults in his family do. His mind returned to the night the boy's grandfather visited.
"If you continue to attempt to persecute my grandson, be assured that you will not enjoy the consequences," the man said with a frosty smile. "I had thought to turn you into a statue and leave you in an alcove somewhere able to see and hear, but unable to interact with anyone. However, my lovely wife had a much more entertaining notion."
Severus had to force himself not to swallow nervously at the man's evident enjoyment of his wife's idea.
"She fully intends to turn you into a flea lodged in the armpit of a particularly malodorous ogre," the man said casually. "And she's just the boy's grandmother. If my daughter decides to intervene, I shudder to think of the results. After all, when a grown man decides to harass and bully a young child, a mother becomes very protective."
The Potions Master turned away, but couldn't stop the tightening of his jaw and the slight shudder as he remembered that night.
Calling Dr. Bombay
After the dark-haired boy saved her, Hermione began to watch him closely. He seemed to be near the top of all the classes they shared, easily getting each spell introduced. He visited the Library, but appeared to be more interested in looking up various pieces of arcane and ancient lore than in studying for his essays. She started to trail after him every so often, just out of curiosity. He was a puzzle and a mystery that she couldn't solve.
Late one afternoon while they were both in the Library, she saw him check his watch, put his books away and head out. As it wasn't the end of the day, she was curious and decided to see where he was going. To her surprise, he entered an unused classroom, and several minutes later, Professor Quirrell appeared. She snuck closer to the door and tried to peek in.
"Thank you for meeting me, Professor," Harry said with a polite smile. "I'll make this pretty quick. I just wanted to ask whether you were a willing host to the parasite on the back of your head, or whether you were coerced."
"What…what do you ," Quirrell started to stutter and then began to draw his wand. Harry blinked and the man froze in place. He shook his head, and then to Hermione's surprise, he looked up and called out "Calling Dr. Bombay. Calling Dr. Bombay. This isn't an emergency, but your presence is requested right away."
Hermione wondered what in the world Harry Stephens was doing. She looked again and didn't see anything like a walkie-talkie or any other communication device. Why was he acting as if he was paging someone? Just as she began to think Harry was totally bonkers, a large middle-aged man appeared in the room wearing a jockey uniform. Hermione shook her head and questioned whether she was hallucinating. No one could apparate into Hogwarts, much less a grown man in a jockey costume!
"Harrison, how good to see you," the strange man said with a smile. "Please excuse my attire. I was horsing around with my nurse!" He looked at the boy as if he expected a response and then shook his head. "Too young, I suppose." With a wave of his hand, his attire changed to three-piece suit, and a black valise appeared in his hand. "What can I do for you, my boy?"
"It's this man," Harry began, pointing to the DADA professor. "I saw that he had two auras. At first I thought he had split personalities, but the auras are too different."
Dr. Bombay looked over the frozen man. "Quite right," he said approvingly. "Then what did you think?"
"Well, I thought he might be possessed. But that didn't quite explain it either, because the second aura seems to be drawing from the first."
"And that means..." prompted the older man.
Harry ran a hand through his hair. "Well, I finally decided that it's a bit of a possession by a parasite." He gestured to the doctor and they moved to the back of the frozen man. With a wave of the boy's hand, the turban lifted off the professor's head, although Hermione couldn't see what the other two saw. Was that wandless magic he was performing?
"Well-reasoned, my boy," Bombay said. "Ugly blighter, isn't it? So why did you call me?"
"Well, I haven't learned how to exorcise a spirit yet, and I didn't know what damage separating them might cause if I just tried something. Can you help?"
"Can I help? My dear boy, I spent years studying for my medical degree, including a stint with the witch doctors of Africa, the shaman in Australia, and the brujo of Argentina. Of course I can help!" He set down his valise, opened it, and to Hermione's surprise, drew out a tuning fork. "What we want to do is set this to the psyche of the host and it will help separate the other spirit from his own." He waved it over the frozen man several times, and said "There we go." With that enigmatic comment, he struck the fork on the top of Quirrell's head.
A high-pitched sound echoed through the room and Quirrell's form began to quiver. "Get ready to catch the ugly blighter," Dr. Bombay said to Harry. "Here it comes."
A black mist began to rise out of Quirrell's shaking form. Harry waited until it was fully detached and then waved both of his hands in a circle. A sphere of shimmering energy appeared around the mist, which bounced off the glowing sphere. A muted shriek of rage could be heard and the mist ran into the sphere over and over, as if attempting to escape. Hermione stared at it in fascination until Quirrell's form abruptly fell onto the floor and drew her attention.
"Hmm, wand wavers don't seem to have much stamina," Dr. Bombay commented with a lack of concern. "He should recover from the possession, but if you hadn't taken action, that thing would have absorbed all of his energy within a few months. Then nothing would have saved him." He smiled at Harry. "Do be sure to think about the medical profession as a profession, Harrison. You have good instincts. Now, I have to get back to my nurse!" With a small gesture, he disappeared.
"But you can't apparate within Hogwarts," Hermione screamed in her mind, hitting her hand on the door without thinking.
Harry turned and noticed her in the shadows. "Oh, hello again, Hermione. What brings you here?"
Hermione walked slowly into the room. "Harry, what's going on? How did you freeze Professor Quirrell? How did that man apparate into and out of Hogwarts? What is that black mist? How did you perform wandless magic? And you didn't even say an incantation!" She ran out of breath and took a deep one in preparation for asking more questions.
Harry grinned and held up both hands. "Hold on, Hermione. I can see auras and noticed that Professor Quirrell was possessed. I called in for a specialist to help. Our magic is a bit different that what's taught here, that's all." He put the energy ball with the black mist into a pocket of his robe, almost absent-mindedly.
Hermione stared at the boy. "That's all? How can you say that's all? What type of magic do you have? How many types of magic are there? Why isn't it in any of our books? Where did you learn about other types of magic?"
"Hermione, I'm sure you're full of questions, but I don't think we should leave the Professor lying on a cold stone floor, do you?" Now that Hermione was watching him, he took his shrunken staff out, waved it towards the unconscious Professor and said "Mobilicorpus". Quirrell's body floated into the air. "Hmm, probably don't want to panic the school," Harry murmured and cast "Velieris" over the floating professor, causing him to turn invisible. "There, let's take him to the Infirmary and afterwards maybe I can answer some of your questions."
When they reached the Infirmary, Madame Pomfrey came out of her office. "Good evening, what seems to be the problem?"
Harry laid the invisible professor on the bed, and Madam Pomfrey's eyes widened as a large depression occurred on the bed. "Finite Incantatem", Harry said and the unconscious professor's form appeared.
"What happened to him," Madam Pomfrey exclaimed even as she withdrew her wand and began casting diagnostic spells.
"He had a parasite in the back of his head," Harry responded. "That's why he was wearing the turban, to cover it up. He fainted when it was removed." Hermione stared at the dark-haired boy for leaving so many details out, but he shook his head at her and she reluctantly kept her thoughts to herself.
The Matron cast a spell to gently raise the professor into a sitting position and looked at the back of his bald head. "I see some residual magic," she murmured. "What was the parasite and how was it removed? Did you witness it?"
"Well, it was a type of a wraith," Harry explained. "A bit of a parasite and possession all rolled into one. The professor fainted when it left him. He'll be all right, won't he?" He turned big innocent eyes on the Matron.
"I'm only seeing a bit of magical exhaustion along with mental and emotional trauma," she responded, before realizing she shouldn't be discussing this with students. "He should be fine. You two should get ready for dinner. In the meantime, I'll let the Headmaster know. He will likely want to speak with you about what you witnessed."
"Yes ma'am," Harry responded dutifully. "Come on, Hermione, I'll escort you to Gryffindor before I head home."
They were no sooner out of the Infirmary when Hermione took a deep breath in preparation of pelting the dark-haired Hufflepuff with questions. "Hermione," he said sharply, to forestall her questions. "I can't answer all of your questions. As far as other magic goes, you heard Dr. Bombay refer to the brujos of South America, the witch doctors of Africa as well as shaman in Australia. Different cultures learned about magic differently, and they developed alternate methods of using it. Hogwarts only teaches the European method."
"How did that Dr. Bombay get into Hogwarts? And why did he appear when you just called out for him? It's not supposed to be possible to apparate within the Hogwarts boundaries!" Hermione sounded quite frustrated and her voice reached a whine with her last sentence.
"Dr. Bombay didn't apparate. He used another method to travel, just as I used another type of magic to call him."
"What type of magic," Hermione persisted.
"It's Family magic, and not something I can discuss outside the bounds of the Family. If you look up Family magic in the library, you'll find out that confidentiality is enforced through the magic itself." He didn't bother saying his family's magic wasn't the same, but it helped stem some of her questions.
"How did you know something was wrong with Professor Quirrell, Harry? Why did you think he was possessed?"
"Well, I can see magical auras, and he had two separate ones. If he was just mentally ill and had multiple personalities, the auras would be mostly the same. However, they were very different, and it almost looked like one of the auras was trying to…devour…the other. That's when I realized he was possessed and by something strong enough to hurt him. I didn't think I could handle it myself, so called for Dr. Bombay."
"But Harry," the girl began again.
"Sorry Hermione, but we're at the Gryffindor dorms and I have to hurry home for the night. I'll see you tomorrow, but I won't be able to share much more than I already have." With that he left the young Gryffindor, who stamped her foot in frustration. There was so much she didn't understand, and the Hufflepuff didn't look like he was going to answer all of her questions. She entered the Common room and went to put her book bag on her bed, very disgruntled.
Return to Normalcy
Harry explained everything that happened to his parents, and admitted that he really didn't think there was a reason for him to continue his Hogwarts education. "The magic is really toned down and restrictive. They insist that a spell won't work unless you say a particular phrase and wave your wand in an exact manner. It just seems silly to me. I don't see me using it as part of a career, and they keep themselves so isolated from the non-magical world that I don't see me staying in or working in their little world after graduation." He looked at both of his parents and gave them his best puppy-dog eyes. "I would rather come back here and only take my normal classes. Pleeeease?"
Darrin and Samantha held a silent conversation with their eyes and then Darrin nodded. He turned back to his son and said, "We agreed that you could try it for one year, but if you are absolutely certain this isn't what you want, then we're OK with you leaving at the end of this term."
Harry gave a whoop of happiness and ran to tell Tabitha. Darrin looked at Samantha and shook his head. "Possessed teachers, trolls in the school, threats of a dire death if they enter a particular corridor, bullying teachers… If Harry hadn't wanted to leave, I was going to strongly recommend that we pull him out. I refuse to put my son at risk for a bunch of crackpots that refuse to come into the twentieth century."
"I totally agree, sweetheart," Samantha replied as she snuggled into his arms. "I want Harry to know about his heritage, but books written about him, people staring at him as if he was an exhibit in the zoo, and no math, science, languages or any type of arts…I would have backed you fully in pulling him out of that madhouse."
"So we're agreed that we go back to just the normal everyday type of magic, with Aunt Clara coming out of closets, and your Mother popping in whenever, and Uncle Arthur playing tricks…"
"Exactly," Samantha said with a smile, tipping her head up for a kiss. Darrin was quick to gratify her demand.
Albus Dumbledore, Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry sat quietly in his office after the students left for their Winter break. He was both disappointed and unsurprised to receive the letter that morning that withdrew Harry Stephens from Hogwarts.
"The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches ... born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies ... and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not ... and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ... the one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies ..."
Was the prophecy actually fulfilled? The elderly wizard reflected on the Stephens boy's statement the day after Quirrell landed in the Infirmary.
"He was possessed by a wraith that called itself Voldemort," the boy said matter-of-factly. "Apparently, he took up residence on the back of the man's head as a parasite, which is why Quirrell wore that turban. He didn't want everyone to see that he had a second face sticking out the back of his skull. The spirit was removed and contained, and Professor Quirrell should have a full recovery eventually."
"What do you mean that the spirit was contained," Albus said in bewilderment.
"I encased it in an energy ball that it couldn't get out of," the boy said off-handedly.
"Where is that ball? Harry, you must give it to me," the Headmaster said urgently.
"I gave it to my Mom. She said she would take care of it." He grinned at the older wizard. "I think you can consider him officially 'vanquished' Headmaster." And beyond that, the boy wouldn't say another word.
Was the 'power he knows not' that of the Immortals? Or was it a mother's love, whether that mother was Lily Potter or Samantha Stephens? Either way, he had a feeling that the wizarding world had lost a precious treasure with Harry Stephens leaving their society.
Albus was at a loss. He had planned his remaining years carefully. He would be a mentor to the young man and help lead him towards his destiny, especially as the next Leader of the Light. But the lad wasn't interested. Now what?
Perhaps Neville Longbottom could be someone he could mentor…
Harry handed his mother the encased spirit, which was still furiously trying to escape its prison. "Mom, Dr. Bombay said this is only three percent of a spirit. What does that mean?"
"Well, if anyone is ever foolish enough to split their soul deliberately, they're left with half a spirit. If he was rash enough to split it again, he would be left with only one-quarter of a soul. Halve it again and again and again, and you would be down to only three percent and you would be left with an utterly insane person, because humans aren't meant to be without an entire soul."
Harry blinked in confusion. "Why would anyone want to split their soul?"
"Perhaps he was afraid of dying and thought that saving pieces here and there would protect him. I suppose we could check and see."
Samantha frowned at the spirit in the energy ball and then incanted, "Slivers of this soul, whether far or near, come to me now, when this spell you hear". In moments, objects began appearing in the room including a golden cup, a necklace with a locket, a tiara, a ring and a leather-bound journal.
"Oh, this won't do at all," Samantha murmured disapprovingly. With a twitch of her nose, each item floated towards the ball of energy. Once the two touched, a black mist left the object and the mist inside the ball became larger until all the objects had been emptied of their soul pieces.
"Now, we have a recombined soul, but what do with you? I'm certainly not going to let you go on your merry way, trying to hurt children again."
"I have an idea," the dark-haired boy grinned at his mother.
"Careful of old Tommy," called the petting zoo attendant to the mother and daughter who were starting to offer the animal an apple. "He's always a mite cantankerous." Near the tethered animal was a sign that read, "Tommy bites! Watch your fingers!"
The jackass glared with slightly red eyes at the attendant, and then turned back to the mother and daughter, hoping to bite the hand that was offering to feed him. To his disappointment, the little girl dropped the apple just within his reach. He wanted to growl, but the only growling heard was from his stomach. He grumpily reached down and took the piece fruit in his mouth. He glared at all the Muggle parents and children happily visiting the petting zoo, ignorant of the notorious Dark Lord who sullenly ate his apple.
Author's Note: This one-shot was inspired by Clell65619's brilliant story "Harry Potter and the Elder Sect". Once that story got me thinking about a Bewitched and Harry Potter crossover, I had to write one of my own.