I do not own Harry Potter.
So, I am SO sorry for the delay in updating! I do have a rather valid excuse, however. I was in the hospital for a month and a half, 12 days of which were spent in the ICU. It wasn't a good situation, needless to say. And then after being released, I just lost interest in all writing. But I am back now, and will hopefully be updating more frequently.
Anyway, I apologize for the rather long introduction in the Prologue, but I felt I had to clarify some things. Also, if any readers get confused as to which character is who, they can go back to the beginning and look at that list I provided. This will hopefully reduce confusion and make it easier for people to follow.
Now, without further ado, I give you Book One!
Update 4/2/2017: New Stuff! Lots of new stuff!
ONE YEAR LATER
Palace of Sparta
The Kitchen and Garden
"Your Royal Highness! Your sister had requested an audience with you over an hour ago! And yet here you are, in the kitchens eating more pomegranates! A prince does not hide himself with the commoners, nor does he stuff his face with fruit. Now, I beg of you, clean yourself up and come see your sister in her private chamber."
Harry shook his head and ran out the side door. His tutor let out an exasperated sigh.
"When will that boy get it through his thick head that he is not a commoner?" he muttered under his breath.
"I will take it from here, Master Lockhart," said a soft feminine voice from the doorway.
"Princess Hermione! Of course! He went into the orchard, I believe."
The seventeen year old princess nodded regally, and left the room. She smiled to herself as she heard the tutor talking to himself, a habit he seemed to have picked up in recent months. Perhaps it was time to find a more suitable Master Tutor…Gilderoy Lockhart was getting older.
Hermione found her brother in his favorite tree, eating an apple and terrorizing the birds.
"Harry, will you come down here? I have a letter from Father and would like to read it to you," she called up into the branches.
She grinned when she heard a bird squawk and before she knew it, Harry was standing before her.
"Why didn't you say so? I would have come when you asked!"
"One of these days, you're going to regret not showing up when I request it," the older girl teased. But she sat down in the shade of the tree, her skirts spread around her, and leaned back against the trunk.
It was their routine to always read Father's letters in private, and knowing this, Harry felt no qualms about snuggling next to his sister and leaning his head against her arm. She smiled and wrapped her arm around his head, and began to read.
My dearest Daughter and Son,
The Trojans claim your mother left on her own free will, and indeed, she has said so herself. I doubt that, for your mother has given me no reason to believe she had been unfaithful. In the days leading up to her kidnapping, she was as loving as ever, and if I can recall correctly, tried to avoid the Trojans unless it was absolutely necessary.
Your uncle and I have left Troy and are sailing to Ithaca, where our fellow kings are gathering. It is there that they have raised an army, though I would prefer to use words rather than force to have your mother returned to us. I admit I thought words would suffice, but our spies tell us Albus has called his allies in for support, and that they are training troops now as I write this.
I fear it will be another year before I can return. Please forgive me. I cannot return to Sparta without your mother. I know her mind has been poisoned against me; I know your mother, and your mother would never turn away from me, even in anger.
We will get to the bottom of this, I assure you. In the meantime, I have arranged for your aunt Molly to send her children to visit you. Unfortunately, Molly herself cannot attend to you, but her son Ron and her daughter Ginny are long overdue for a visit. They shall arrive a day or two after you receive this letter, I should think.
Know that I miss you and that not a day goes by where I don't think of either of you. And I am sure your mother misses you as well, deep down.
Your loving father,
"Ron and Ginny to come here! Oh, it's been at least, what? Two years, three years since we last saw them?"
"It has been a while, hasn't it?" Hermione said softly.
As her brother talked about how he was going to tackle Ron when he enters the room, Hermione's mind slipped away to a far off memory.
"Hermione? Sister? Are you there?"
"Oh, yes. I'm sorry Harry, what were you saying?"
"Are you okay? You look….funky."
She blushed under her brother's scrutiny. "I'm fine, Harry. Shall we go prepare the guest rooms for them? They should be here by tomorrow. You remember how punctual Aunt Molly was."
Palace of Troy
Queen Lily's Bedchamber
Lily was in her private chamber, brushing her long, red hair when Sirus entered the room.
"Sirus! What have I told you about knocking?" she teased as she proceeded to spray some perfume on her wrists.
He smiled but didn't answer. That was when she knew something was wrong.
"Sirus. What is it?"
"It's…Father's Councilmen are debating whether or not to return you to your husband."
Lily gasped. "No, they couldn't! They wouldn't do that to us!"
Sirus sighed. "I doubt they will, but it does worry me. There's enough opposition within the city that they could decide to do just that.
"I don't understand," Lily said as she shook her head. "I thought the people loved me."
"And they do! But I think with the possibility of war…I don't know. But I pray that it will not come."
She sighed. "I will pray to Godric then, that such a decision does not come to pass."
Sirus smiled, but it did not reach his eyes. He knew what he had done was wrong. Each day he died a little as war loomed closer. In his dreams, he could hear the screams of his people as they were slaughtered by the Spartans and their allies.
The Egyptian claimed it would not come to that; he promised a peaceful transition. And yet, Sirus couldn't help but dream.
It was the Egyptian who told him to kidnap the Spartan Queen, after hearing of his wish to have one night with just the two of them. It was that nameless one who told him to poison her mind against her lawful husband and king. He said it was for the best, that she deserved a real man; but Sirus saw the love they bore each other, and the two beautiful children she gave to him in person. Guilt was something that was new to Sirus, and needless to say he did not like the feeling.
Palace of Sparta
The next day, Hermione and Harry stood at the entrance to the palace, watching the slow procession wind its way up the hill. At the lead, Hermione could see a young, red haired man sitting astride his horse. Behind him, in a chariot, with her hair swaying in the breeze, stood a young woman.
"That's Ron! Hermione, there he is!" Harry was practically bouncing on his feet as they watched the procession make its way up to the gates. Hermione put a restraining hand on Harry's shoulder, though it did little to calm him.
When they finally made it through the gates, the leader leapt from his horse, strode up to Hermione and wrapped her in a hug. Not entirely expecting such a greeting, the young princess stiffened, but then relaxed and returned the hug.
"I've missed you so," she whispered in his ear.
"The feeling is mutual," Ronald, Crown Prince of Mycenae and eldest son of Queen Molly and King Arthur, replied.
Just when the duration of the hug reached its limit of propriety, Ron let go. He turned to Harry, who was literally jumping up and down, and ruffled his hair. "You've grown, Harry." He said with a smile.
"Yep! Come on, we've got a welcome banquet that's waiting for you. It's not like our usual fare, since a lot of the money coming in is financing the campaign, but it's better than what we usually eat. And while we're eating, we can catch up. It's been nearly three years since we last saw each other, you know."
Hermione smiled and spoke softly in Ron's ear "if he wears you out, don't hesitate to tell him. He'll calm down."
Ron grinned and let himself be pulled inside through the palace doors.
"It's so good to be back, Hermione," said a quiet voice.
"Ginny!" Hermione squealed. Despite their age difference, it was nice to have a girl cousin. Considering Hermione didn't have any sisters, and Harry could get a little rambunctious at times, it was always nice to have that girl time.
The young red head stepped forward and embraced her cousin. Then she stepped back and eyed Hermione up and down. "You've definitely grown more beautiful since I last saw you, Hermione. Anyone steal your heart yet?
The older girl blushed and tucked a strand of hair behind her ear. "Of course not. You can't imagine how busy I've been since I've been running the kingdom."
Ginny laughed and slipped her arm through Hermione's so they were linked together. "Somehow I doubt that. Harry has written to me many times complaining on your 'daydreaming' and 'lack of interest.' That can only mean one thing: Princess of Hermione is in love."
"Harry's been writing to you?! Why didn't I know this? Is that what he does instead of his studies?"
"Oh…I wasn't supposed to tell you that…" but from the gleam in her eyes Hermione knew she was keeping something from her.
"Right…well, let's go inside. Dinner should be ready. Harry has already dragged Ron in and I suppose we shouldn't subject Ron to Harry's antics much longer. "
Ginny grinned and, arm in arm, they entered the palace together.
High above on the rooftop of the palace stood a shadowy figure. He was dressed all in black, except for the dark red scarf that was wrapped around his waist. His blue eyes flashed darkly as he watched the two princesses enter the palace.
"Soon, the Dark Lord's work will be done. And you will be mine."
Godric Gryffindor, king of the gods and ruler of Mount Olympus sat on his throne atop the dais while his court feasted below him. Such banquets were common in the court of the gods; his wife, Amelia, refused to attend so many and so was back in her rooms, spinning to her heart's content. A stern wife she was and she constantly despaired over his many infidelities. Their marriage was a source of amusement and entertainment to the court but it did not bother either of them. In all fairness, Amelia loved him deeply and he returned that love. Their bickering was a way to keep the gods from challenging their thrones, even if some of their more recent arguments were more realistic than he liked to admit.
Still, as immortals they had a duty to those they ruled, and to those mortals far below them. Gryffindor did not view them as play things, as so many of the gods did, but he did believe them to be fickle creatures. He supposed when one lived forever such petty squabbles became less important, even if some did not believe that. Indeed, there were several in the room who could hold a grudge for centuries.
His brother, Salazar Slytherin, was one such god. Ruler of the Underworld, Slytherin was a thorn in his side and had been for a millennium. He knew the dark haired, pale god wanted his throne and Gryffindor suspected he would do almost anything to get it.
Family didn't mean much in the court of the gods.
Helga Hufflepuff approached the dais, her expression full of apprehension. "What is it, Helga?" he asked, his tone light, but bored. "My lord, you have heard the Greeks are recruiting an army?" she asked. He nodded. Who hasn't? Evidently, a Spartan queen was stolen by Trojans, abducted from her own bedchamber in the dark of the night. Her husband, the king, wanted her back and he had enlisted his brother Arthur, king of Mycenae to help.
"I must ask you to intervene, my lord. If you don't this war will rage for 10 long years and I'm afraid it won't just be the mortals who will pay the price." Godric sat up a bit, intrigued by what Helga was saying. "What do you mean?" She swallowed. "I have heard that the Trelawney Prophet is predicting death and destruction among mortals and gods if the war is allowed to take place. I bet you, for the sake of your throne and for court, listen to her. Stop this war! It will be the end of the world as we know it if we let it continue."
Godric scoffed. "The Trelawney Prophet? She is just an old hag! Everyone knows her prophecies rarely come true!" "Of course, my lord. But she has been known to predict accurately on occasion. I fear what would happen if this prophecy became reality." Godric sighed. "You are right to bring this to my attention. But even so, what could be so powerful that we, the immortal gods of Mount Olympus, should be frightened? Trelawney's sight comes to her only rarely, and there have been many occasions before where she's predicted doom and destruction. Until I have actual proof that we are threatened, I can, and will do, nothing." He raised his voice to be heard throughout the hall. "And no one else shall intervene, either. Let the mortals have their war! And we shall take bets on the winner!"
Helga shook her head, exasperated by Godric's refusal. As cheers erupted throughout the banquet hall, Helga made her way back to her apartments, her soul heavy with trepidation.
Amelia Bones: Hera, queen of the gods and wife to Zeus
Hope you enjoyed it! Don't forget to review!