BETA DESPERATELY NEEDED!
Name: Magical Empire: The Return
Summary: Magic was nearly wiped fro the world. Two centuries later, a dictator rules the Wizarding World. How will Harry prosper in this environment? The rise of a tyrannical Empire is nigh. Rated T for instances of strong language.
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AN – I tried my utmost to keep the chapter original... well original enough for it to be entertaining.
This entire chapter is a precursor to the rest of the story (duh, Prologue!) This isn't a protagonist is the right guy fic. Many of you may not agree with the unificationist ideologies. Harry's decisions aren't always going to be the good ones, the antagonists might be doing the right thing...
"The witch hunts of the Late Middle Ages and Early Modern Ages shook Wizarding society to its very core..." Unknown
A Village in England, 1693
John smiled as he saw another witch being burnt to the stake. These past few days had been a success for his witch-hunting business. Over 300 witches had been caught doing the work of the devil, and some beastly men too!
Some people said that this witch hunt was superstitious and pathetic; a ploy by businessmen for money. Maybe it was. As far as John was concerned, God had told him what to do, and he did it.
He didn't know how there were so many witches being turned in, but he was willing to set it aside, again, as God giving him signs. It wasn't just his business that was experiencing a rise in profit, though. All around the country, thousands of these devil workers were being brought to justice, and soon, he hoped, the whole of the witch society would be annihilated. Of course, then he'd have to start giving false accusations - after all, he did have a business to handle. Say, hadn't his wife been giving that Miranda woman evil looks? Hmm...
Houses of Parliament, 27th of January 1735
"These so-called businesses are preposterous! Good, law-abiding citizens are being killed for some mythical ability which is impossible to obtain, have or use! Witchcraft exists, does it? Fellow MPs, we are educated men! Think, and use the rationalist theory we all support! Globally, it is estimated that millions have been executed! Think reasonably, fellow Members. Our labour is being cut down because of this, and we're losing money. And even if this, this magic is somehow real, won't it help our nation? The abilities of these witches would boost the factories' machinery and that means money, for those capitalists out there! We must pass this act, Parliament Members, because we are here for the good of the nation and its' people! It is obvious that the uneducated masses are easily drawn in by these theories – proposed by ignorant and superstitious peasants! " John Conduitt spat, "Rather than making these sufferers suffer more, we should make those fools the enemy, the victim. Thi-"
"I OBJECT!" interrupted Lord James Erskine, forgetting protocol and drawing several dirty looks from his colleagues, "Rationalists are wrong! Witchcraft is real, and a true threat! This bill will destroy the nation! I will – No, we will stop this..."
Robert Walpole smirked inwardly. This was the moment he'd been waiting for. The Scottish MP had spoken out of turn and was further enhancing the eccentric and crazy image that he projected. He had a feeling Erskine wouldn't really be a serious threat to his political agenda any longer.
"...and I will not stop until every witch is GONE!"
"Order! Lord Erskine, sit down! We have heard from the supporters and, ahem, the opposition," Walpole cut in, drawing a few titters with the last word, "Now we shall proceed with a vote. All those in favour say Aye, and those not in favour say Nay."
After a resounding call of almost unanimous 'Aye!'s, the bill was set forward to await Royal Assent. If all went to plan then the Witchcraft Act 1735 would be enforced by summer.
Potter Household, 1745
Since his childhood, Andrew Potter had played with non-magical friends, The hunts were not deterrents, because he didn't have the emotional stress other magical children did, and he was a male, so doing accidental magic was a rarity for him. Now that his mother had died whilst protecting her friend, and his father had gone insane from this, the burdens of Lordship fell unto him. His political ideologies were different from the other pureblood families – he wanted some sense of union between the Magical and Muggle worlds. The isolationist view of the general populace and other families grated on his nerves, but he knew his family had a reputation and tradition to uphold, so he had to support these views in the meetings of the Wizengamot.
He wouldn't let his views go to waste though... already, his children were taking a course in a prestigious upper-class day school in Muggle Britain, under the pretence of magical training. Their actual magical training would stay at home, and he would make sure his children did this with his own children.
He mused to himself, 'Maybe I could start up a town? Composed of people like me? Yes, that would be ideal, I certainly have the money to back it up... Hmm..."
The door to Andrew's office opened.
"Your Grace, Malfoy is requesting a meeting." Andrew's attendant stated.
Andrew groaned. The Malfoys were a French family who had moved to England a couple of years back, and due to their noble status in France, they were pestering the Wizengamot to give them an equal rank in England. They had nothing to offer, their currency was defunct and was made of cheap steel – their 'galion' was worth less than a thirtieth of a Galleon – their houses had been ransacked and the only thing they had was fine clothes and their wands. That was it. They managed to get a modest house, though, which they snobbishly renamed to "Malfoy Manor".
"Send him in," he replied with no small amount of exasperation.
"Potter! Why 'ave I not received mon Lordship yet?" Lucien Malfoy questioned loudly, barging gracelessly into the office.
And they were arrogant, disrespectful and spoiled twits too.
Wizengamot Halls, 1864
The Wizengamot Magical Government was seated in the magical equal to the Houses of Parliament, discussing the newest move against the Dark Lord Insta'arta (not the worst name, as Dark Lords go).
The Speaker called out, "Order! I now call the two hundred and thirty seventh meeting of the Wizengamot into session! Today, we have five bills and proposals on the agenda. Our first move is the bill to legally allow the government to take all the assets of known members of the resistance. As discussions took place in two and thirty fifth session, I will call a vote now. Please call for 'Aye' if you approve of the amended bill, or 'Nay' if you do not approve of the amended bill."
Shouts of greedy 'Aye!'s were dominant. After this, the Speaker started to confirm the approval of the Bill, but he was interrupted, because moments later a blinding flash engulfed the Hall.
Seconds later, a flash was seen, and every member of the Wizengamot dropped dead.
Supreme Chief Insta'arta grinned in satisfaction. Eight years after the fall of the Wizengamot, his armies had finally gained enough strength to beat back the combined Irish-Scottish Forces, and take control of Magical England. Why couldn't Magical Scotland and Ireland have signed the damn Treaty of Union? It would have been much easier and quicker.
He wouldn't approach with caution. Scotland would be taken by next week, then he'd see about the conquest of Muggle Britain. Granted, there were only three to four thousand magical people in the whole of the British Isles, but that didn't matter. He was the ruler of a nation, so to speak! And he'd damn well enjoy it.
The dictatorial regime had begun.
A large gathering was present in the Wizarding town of Summus. They were the supporters of partial unificationism, a political view that was rising in popularity.
In front of the audience, there was a large stage, not unlike ones used for concerts. It had various banners hanging from the top, the most prominent of which was a shield and two crossed swords.
A speaker was on the stage; his name was Harold Potter – he had blue eyes and raven black hair with hints of grey. He was of modest build, but this did nothing to restrain the aura of power he radiated. Behind him, his family was stood. His siblings, parents, wife, children, and children-in-law. He opened his mouth to resume his speech.
"From where I left off before the break, we are here for a reason, friends! We will not uphold this pathetic excuse for tradition! What is wrong with the muggle world? They have no magic? They're inferior? No, they are not. They have technology! Britain is the seat of the largest empire in history! They have weapons that could kill us all in seconds! Yet the extremist purebloods fail to see this. In the past, one of my ancestors, Cassandra Potter, was a seer. She foresaw a possible future, before the hunts, where there was a Ministry of Magic. An organisation, presumably synonymous to other Muggle Ministries, that was thriving and populous! And what are we? A declining race, hampered by the actions of a foolish dictator refusing to look towards the bigger picture! We must do something. If this continues, the inevitable revelation of Wizarding society will set us up in flames! So I, Harold Potter, say no to this! We are the largest concentration of magical people in the world! No longer will we live in isolatio-!"
A loud bang was heard. The police forces quickly got into formation, wands at the ready.
The Disillusionment charms on the wall were activated as part of the emergency protocol, and everyone froze stock still at the sheer size of the army beyond the walls.
Many were unsure as to why this was happening, and so waited to see what was happening. They got their answer soon.
"PEOPLE OF SUMMUS! Supreme Chief Insta'arta Jr. has deigned you traitors on grounds of treason. Prepare to pay for your crimes in blood!" a Sonorus-enhanced voice shouted, not giving any specific reason.
This threat prompted the crowd to break down in screams and disarray. Completely forgetting logic, hundreds of limbs quickly filled the grounds and streets as the Anti-Apparition ward raised by the enemy did its job. Not long after, the now weakened magically reinforced walls of the town started to be bombarded with spell fire. This, combined with the strain on the wards, threw debris and rocks of weight in the tonnes into the crowd, crushing hundreds of unlucky individuals.
The Potters stood and raised their wands. Harold shouted to Lily and James Potter.
"Take Harry and go! The Potter line must live on!"
Egged on by the rest of the family, Lily and James took their child, Harry, and practically flew towards the Potter home. This was to use an emergency portal they had set up in case of emergencies. The only flaw? It took over twenty minutes to be ready for use.
As they magically propelled themselves towards their home, Lily and James had to take extra care not to hit any other fleeing families, and to not drop Harry, their child. Once they arrived, almost two minutes later, they quickly moved to the teleport room.
Sitting down while her husband fixed up the portal, Lily hugged and kissed her silent Harry, wondering fearfully whether this was the last time she'd see him.
Meanwhile, the invaders had broken through the walls. Somehow the anti-apparition wards had fallen around part of the town, allowing a few thousand people to escape. The police force, the Potters and some brave dwellers of Summus stayed to fight back.
'And what do you know," thought Harold Potter bitterly, "The bastard himself is here. If they destroy the town, we'll all die from the magical backlash. At least Lily, James and Harry got away... the Potter line isn't dead yet. Hopefully the kid will have access to the family books; he's going to learn nothing at Hogwarts. Pah!"
As soon as the first invader walked in, the counter attack began in earnest. The defenders were hugely outnumbered, but they'd be damned if they didn't take at least a small chance of saving their home.
BANG! The first spell had been thrown. Moments later, each side was being slaughtered. A Reductor had been thrown into the enemy artillery, which prompted it to go off, and because of it's lowered angle, it shot a massive barrage of spell fire into the invaders. It stopped working straight after that, however, so it wasn't much use. A wall had been successfully conjured between one of the lines, causing many a soldier to crack their skulls in their march.
For all the expertise of the defenders, though, they were simply overwhelmed. Insta'arta Jr. had been taking no chances whilst attacking Summus. Perhaps if he had inherited the arrogance of his father, the result of the battle may have been different.
But as it was, despite huge losses to the invaders, the fighters of Summus were killed. Only some high ranking policemen got away, by pure luck. Earlier in the battle. Harold had gone out under a disillusionment charm and killed Insta'arta Jr.
The invaders that were left now rushed into the town, killing survivors/being killed by survivors and pillaging the town.
Over at the Potters, the apparition wards had not lowered, and a team of 10 men entered, as the Potter Family was a high profile target. Lily and James had managed to activate the portal and were now packing the manor into a trunk, and putting it into the Transportation bag, so it could be taken into the real Bank of England. While they were doing this the team rushed in, wands blazing.
Quickly throwing up a shield, James told Lily,
"Lily, take Harry and go! They're here! Go! Run! I'll hold them off! And... I-I love you..."
While she turned to run, to the portal, she caught a cutting hex to the back. Hissing in pain, she regardless grabbed Harry and activated the portal. Running through the portal, she closed it behind her. She suppressed all the feelings she had; Harry needed to stay alive. Sending a stitching charm to the cut, a temporary measure at best, she took in her surroundings.
'Kensington, I think,' Lily thought, 'Got to be some magical unificationist here... Ah, the Andersons! I'll give Harry to him for the time being, I'll be back in a few hours,'
Apparating to her destination, on the outskirts of Kensington, she walked in uninvited (emergency!) and quickly explained the situation to Alex Anderson, the patriarch of the family, and dumped Harry into his hands.
"We're on the run, James is dead, I need to get this to the Bank of England. If you'd just take Harry for the next few hours I'd be grateful..." she explained breathlessly.
"Uh... yes, OK! Anything for an old friend! My condolences for James." Alex replied, clearly startled. He had not known James, but was close to Lily, and so hesitated little in agreeing.
Not bothering to reply, Lily apparated to the Potter vault in the Bank of England. Dropping the transportation bag, she pulled out her wand. Using a power called Ethereal Runes, she drew runes for power, anti-transport and strengthening in the air. Waving her wand, she spread the runes to fill the vault, and used up most of her reserves in charging them. At least the vault would be protected for decades.
She then apparated to Hogwarts, her next stop. She bumped into Dumbledore, who was coincidentally at the gate.
"Ah, Lily! What a wonderful surprise! Why are you in such a rush?"
"Haven't you heard? Insta'arta is dead! Summus has been taken!"
"What?" Dumbledore questioned rhetorically, with a manipulative glint in his eyes "Good, good..."
"Good? What are you talking about? How the fuck is any of this good?" Lily angrily inquired, politeness all but leaving her now.
"Lily, you always were so naïve and malleable..." Before she could interrupt, he drew his wand and threw a non verbal spell at her.
Lily's world went black. Her last thoughts, 'No! Harry, James, I lov-'
Cackling could be heard.
Secret Location, 1982
Seated around a eight-seater table in a nondescript room were 4 men, all wearing suits and ties. One was the Secretary of Defence, the other the Head of the Ministry Intelligence, and two scientists.
"Sir, this is an unknown phenomenon. If however, we were to harness this power from the source, the whole of the British Empire could be powered for years – from a single hour of harvesting! Harvesting over a few years would be enough for a colony ship to last for millennia! Once located, this will be the most exciting – and most beneficial – discovery in modern times!" one of the scientists excitedly proclaimed.
"We do not know the implications of harvesting this energy from the source, however, and we could open the door to a problem that outweighs the energy gains," the second scientist argued, "The amount of energy that is being released from wherever it is is amazing, but it would overwhelm every power plant in the world within two months! That is if we do it one at a time. All at once, the plants would explode in ten minutes! We have high levels of technology, but the plants simply do not possess the control to cut off energy harvesting to the precision of minutes. Regardless of if we do develop such control, it is inevitable that one or two will explode, and they will take hundreds of lives with them. Also, you are assuming we'll be able to locate it successfully. Our sensors will probably explode before they even get there! It's the Bermuda Triangle on a potentially catastrophic scale!"
"Of course, that is all true, but once we develop the technology fully, hundreds of before impossible projects will be completed! The energy has a mutation – which is being investigated as we speak - though. Earlier today, we harnessed a small amount of the energy, not from the source, by the way, and used it to power the experimental, and previously failing, ray gun. It managed to shatter a 20cm thick wall of the alloy used for Class X20 armour!" the first scientist replied.
"Class X20?" The Minister of Defence cut in disbelievingly.
Class X20 was the strongest body armour ever created, made of a metal alloy that wasn't disclosed to the general public. It was issued to the Special Operation teams in the army. It was completely bulletproof, shrapnel-proof, and plasma proof. Nothing could break through it; well, until now, that is.
"Yes, and it used barely a tenth of the stored energy. At full power it could probably break through HMS Eclipse's hull! Normal, fossil fuel energy couldn't do that until using roughly 200 Megawatts!"
The Minister of Defence sat back in his seat, clearly shocked for words. The second scientist faltered, having not heard of the ray gun until now.
The head of Military Intelligence, who had been silent until now, took the time to ask a question.
"And how successful has the locating been?" he asked quietly, creating a sense of tension in the room.
"Well, not entirely successful, we did accidentally overload four or five Terra3 probes -"
"So there's fifteen billion pounds gone, and when located? We'll need, oh, over three hundred billion pounds to create the technology to harvest it, when the British Empire uses only thirty to forty billion pounds of energy a year... This isn't a worthy investment, for a large-scale goal. I think that enhancing weaponry and space transport is the limit of where we should go."
"Of course, nothing has been finalised yet, so discussions of funding will take place next week so economic viability isn't a concern at this point."
"Then it looks like we'll continue this discussion next week, no?"
Departing from the table, they shook hands and left.
No one of importance knew the implications of this meeting – muggles had harnessed and used magic.
So there we have it! The first chapter of Magical Empire: The Return of Magic
This story will be fairly long and last as long as is viable. The second book in the series may be released along with this book, or as a separate story. Probably as part of this, to ensure maximization of reviews, and me having time to read them.
How was it? This is my first attempt at an original fan fiction. I'm pretty sure it hasn't been done before, but one can never know B-)
By the way, the Parliament scene with the Witchcraft Bill was right with the names and stuff. James Erskine was a real MP, and the only recorded significant opposition to the Witchcraft Act 1735. Not much is actually known about what happened, because it was illegal for press to report on matters in Parliament till the late 18th century.
This will be on a VERY slow update schedule.