A/N:Wow. The response to this story is amazing...thanks everyone! This is the last part of the prologue, and sadly, the last part told this way. Since so many people liked this style, it may show up later on, but I'm not sure. After this, the plot will thicken.
So, not all of your answers will be answered this chapter. Actually, after reading it, you'll probably have more. Some characters may be OOC, but it will be explained later on, I promise. So, Read let me know what you think.
Sorry to those of you who like long chapters; I just wanted to get this out tonight. Don't get used to the weekly updates though...
Disclaimer: I, mischiefmanaged0116, do solemnly swear that I do not own Harry Potter and Co., nor do I own the Avengers.
Prologue III: The Aftermath
Daily Prophet, 6th of November, 1996
KINGSLEY SHACKLEBOLT ELECTED MINISTER FOR MAGIC!
The Wizengamot met with the intention to make decisions on several important issues, one of which being the choosing of a new Minister. They were successful. Within four hours, nominations, speeches, and voting was complete, and an auror, Kingsley Shacklebolt, emerged as Great Britain's Minister for Magic. He was supported by Albus Dumbledore, as well as other Light supporters.
We at the newly reinstated Daily Prophet hope that Minister Shacklebolt will help us usher in a long-lasting era of peace.
November 9th, 1996, 12 Grimmauld Place (Kitchen)
"Go away...oh, it's you, Harry."
"Yeah. I need your help."
"I got this envelope from Gringotts."
"There was a letter in it."
"And another envelope."
"I thought so too, so I read the letter."
"...Well? What'd it say?"
"It said...it said the other envelope was a letter from someone. The instructions given were that is was supposed to be delivered to me either within five years of being written, or...or when the author of the letter was declared dead."
"Harry...who wrote the letter?"
"It's from Remus, isn't it?"
"...Yeah, it is."
"What do you...uh...what do you think it says?"
"I don't know...and I'm afraid to open it."
"Do you want to open it together, then, Harry?"
"Yeah...I think that's a good idea. On three then?"
"I guess so...one."
"NO ONE MOVE! We have a warrant for the arrest of Harry James Potter."
"On what grounds?"
"I am his guardian, and I deserve to know."
"First degree murder, sir. One by the name of Marjorie Dursley."
Trial Record Number: 711-731-196
Name: Harry James Potter
Crime: First Degree Murder of a Muggle (Marjorie Dursley)
Evidence: Murder Weapon (Knife, Found by A. Dumbledore)
Hatred of Victim
Sentence: Life in Azkaban (Dementors reinstated as of 14/11/96)
November 30th, 1996, Azkaban Prison (Visiting Room M)
"It wasn't me, Sirius. I didn't kill her. If I never killed my 'family', I wouldn't have killed her. It wasn't even my knife, and-"
"Calm down, Harry. I understand you didn't do it. I didn't do it either, remember?"
"Yeah, I know, I just..."
"Affecting you already, right?"
"I'll get you out, Harry. Just hang on until then."
"I'll try, but...I don't know if I can."
"You're innocent. Remember that."
"How is everyone?"
"They miss you. Fred and George are currently collaborating with Draco, Neville, and Luna on ways to get back at Ron, Ginny and Hermione for lying and betraying you. I'll let you know what they come up with when I see you next week."
"...They can't come, can they?"
"No, only family. They're all planning on writing letters though. I'll bring them with me next time."
"Sorry, Sirius...I only just remembered. Next time you come, can you bring Remus' letter? We were interrupted last time."
"Alright. Stay strong, kiddo."
Hello there, Prongslet. I realize there is a slight possibility you've never heard of me before, but seeing as I am departing today for Hogwarts to be your DADA professor, chances are you do know who I am. My name is Remus Lupin, and I was one of your parents' best friends up through their deaths. I know that a lot of this information will be hard for you to accept; I never meant to tell you through a letter, but I'm running out of time. I feel by tomorrow, I won't remember any of this information. I can only hope that my memories are wrong, yet I fear that is in vain. Please, just read through what I have to say, and trust me, as hard as this may be to believe.
I am unsure as to how much you know about the night your parents were killed. Knowing who has probably filled you in, I'm guessing you only know the basics; your parents were killed on the 31st of October, 1981 by Voldemort. There's a lot more to it than that though. You see, your parents, your father specifically, actually, had two other close friends: Sirius Black and Peter Pettigrew. It is believed that Sirius Black betrayed your parents to Voldemort that night, before brutally murdering Peter Pettigrew and 12 muggles. That leads to the first big reveal. SIRIUS BLACK IS INNOCENT. He did NOT betray your parents, and he did NOT kill anybody. He is a good man, an innocent man. If he is not yet out of Azkaban, GET HIM OUT! Go to Madam Bones, or if she isn't available try Nymphadora Tonks (she should be an auror by now), and raise the point that he never got a trial, you need closure, blah blah blah, something believable like that.
Now, I'm pretty sure you grew up with the Dursleys. Having met the Dursleys, I think it's pretty safe to say that you were never happy there, if not outright abused. I swear Harry, if it wasn't for that I would never be allowed to see you, I'd have taken you away from those monsters as soon as possible. There are many others who would have done the same, if it wasn't for the manipulations of one old man: Albus Dumbledore.
I know you probably look up to him so much, but he is bad news Harry. When I left England after your parents' death, he would come and see me every month. I thought he was only checking up on me until I went to Canada without telling him. After spending about 45 days there, memories started to come back, memories that Dumbledore had locked away. It was only thanks to a friend that I was able to sort through everything, and he's the only one I told the truth to. Harry, Dumbledore is manipulating your life. I'm sure that in the time I have spent in Canada, things have only gotten worse. That's why I decided to take the DADA job, loathe as I am to return to England. I'm hoping that I might be able to stop this, that I may be able to protect you.
Be careful who you trust. Dumbledore could be using ANYONE to manipulate you. Trust Sirius, and you should also trust Severus Snape. You'll find that both men have been manipulated just as much as you have. Look over your life, think about the events that have happened, and decide whether they were coincidence or intended. Be careful.
Harry, I just wanted to tell you that even without meeting you, I'm so proud of you. When Dumbledore sent me the letter to become the DADA teacher, he told me all about everything you've done. Of course, I only read it after removing all of the curses on it, but that doesn't change anything, Your parents would be so proud of you.
This letter will either be delivered upon my death or five years after this letter was written. If you're reading this, and I'm gone, don't grieve for me. Live for me instead. Find a way out of Dumbledore's grasp. Run away if you need to. Don't worry about defeating Voldemort, that is NOT your responsibility, especially if you are still a teenager. Harry, If you need help escaping Dumbledore, contact Dr. Bruce Banner. He's a muggle, but he's very...special. Send him an owl; he knows all about our world, and he can tell you more details than what's in this letter. I trust him with my life. He has already promised to help you should you need it. So accept his help; you don't have to do everything alone.
Remus Lupin (aka Moony)
P.S.- If I'm still alive, show me this letter, and then perform the memory-clearing charm on me.
December 14th, 1996, Azkaban Prison (Visiting Room A)
"Remus thought Dumbledore was manipulating me."
"Yeah, he did."
"He told me to leave Britain before I got hurt."
"I got hurt."
"I think...I think Remus was right...about Dumbledore."
"I think so too."
"...Do you think he might have framed me for this?"
"Can you figure it out?"
"I can try my hardest, Harry."
"...You seem, ah...sane today."
"Yeah...I've had a lot of not-so-happy things to think about this week. The dementors didn't have too much of an effect."
"Yeah, it is. So, have you ever heard of that Bruce Banner guy?"
"No...Remus never mentioned him."
"Can you find out for me? If I ever get out of here, I'm not staying in Britain. I need to leave, and it would be nice to have some outside help."
"I can understand that...but just remember, I'm with you. I think Luna, Neville, Draco, Fred, and George are with you as well."
I don't know how much you know about me, but my name is Sirius Black. I'm an old friend of Remus Lupin's. My godson, Harry Potter, received a letter from Remus revealing certain truths, as well as your name. He said that if Harry ever needed help, to contact you. Things in Britain are looking grim for Harry, and your help would be greatly appreciated. Please let me know if you are willing to assist us.
Since you are the one who wrote me, I am going to assume that Remus died and Harry is currently incapacitated, leaving you as my correspondent. In light of this, and I hope this is not too forward of me, I feel it would be much easier for both of us if we decided to disregard titles and just call each other by our first names, as I have a feeling we will be writing often. Remus spoke of you often and fondly, or at least, he did once his memories were restored, so I feel almost as if I already know you. The gender-changing prank was ingenious, by the way. Remus told me almost everything, which was a good thing, seeing as I saw the letter he wrote Harry, and believe me when I say that only the bare minimum of everything you need to know was revealed. That letter held only three purposes: making sure you were free, revealing Dumbledore as a manipulative old coot, and giving Harry my name. Remus was counting on me to reveal the rest.
I am willing to assist in any way I can. Remus helped me through a very difficult time in my life, and the least I can do is help those he considered family. If you are agreeable, I was wondering if I could stay with you in London for a while, to help you figure out your next move. We can then plan out whether or not you wish to move to the muggle world, and if you do, how best to make the transition.
January 4th, 1997, Azkaban Prison (Visiting Room N)
"Oh, Harry...I'm assuming it's gotten worse then?"
"Eight outside...all times...since Christmas."
"I will get you out, I promise. I have some help now. Bruce is arriving in just over a week to help me, okay?"
"You want me to look at the knife?"
"Handle...materials. Snape and Bruce."
"Of course! If Dumbledore framed you, he would have used the same type of knife he originally gave you. We never told anyone you were allergic to Graphorn Horn. And you want Snivellus and Bruce to help me?"
"Remus said we...could trust...them."
"I suppose you're right. Bruce is a scientist, and Snivel-Snape is a potions expert. Between the three of us, we should be able to figure it out...but Harry, it will take months to separate the Graphorn Horn from the handle and prove that you didn't have an allergic reaction that day."
"I know, I know...just hang in there, okay? You're innocent, and you will be okay."
As much as it pains me to admit it, I need your help. Harry is innocent, and I've found a way to prove it. I just need your help with taking apart some magical compounds. I know you don't like me, but do it for Harry, Lily's son.
January 20th, 1997, 12 Grimmauld Place (Kitchen)
"So your problem with the "other guy" is like Remus' furry little problem, only yours is controlled by emotions as opposed to the moon cycle?"
"And you control it by always being angry?"
"Well, its a little more complicated than that, Sirius."
"Whatever. I wonder if there are any potions that might help with that..."
"Remus said there probably were. He wasn't really very good at potions though."
"No he wasn't. You'll have to ask Harry after we get him out, or I suppose you could always ask Snape."
"Did you manage to get in touch with Severus, then?"
"He'll be here at noon tomorrow. When he gets here, will you finally tell us what Remus told you?"
"No?! Bruce, you promised!"
"I will tell you some of what Remus told me. Harry should be there for most of it though. I'll tell you enough to keep you thinking for a while."
"Why do I have a feeling this is stuff I won't be able to unlearn?"
"Well that depends on how you look at it."
You would not believe how strange things are here. Sometimes, I'm afraid that I'm insane. Then I realize that I am, otherwise I would not be living with the people I am. Everyone is a little surprised by everything that's happened in the last two weeks though, regardless of their mental health.
First of all, Fred and George not only moved in with us permanently, but they bought a joke shop! They said they've had the money for a while, but were saving it until the war was over. So they, along with Lee Jordan, are running a joke shop in Diagon Alley. I almost feel bad for the Hogwarts teachers...but somehow, I don't. Oh, the twins say hi by the way; they have a bunch of products they're saving for when you get out. Do me a favor and don't use them on me?
Dr. Bruce Banner is living with us now, too. He's pretty much here to stay at least until we can get you out. He isn't really what any of us expected. Bruce is a lot like...well, he's a lot like Remus, actually. At first, we were all kind of afraid of how Draco would act around him, but the two of them have become pretty close. It's really shocking actually, how well Bruce fits in with us. He understands Luna, manages to see the good in Draco, catches all of the twins' pranks, talks with me...and that's not even the best part. Somehow, since he's been here, Bruce has gotten Sirius and Professor Snape to get along!
None of us really know how it happened. Fifteen minutes before Snape was supposed to arrive, Sirius paused in his ranting about 'that greasy git' to tell the five of us to go upstairs until dinner. We took the time to duel a little bit; Draco beat us all (and he hasn't stopped gloating since). There was still some time left before dinner, so Fred and George reminded us to shower (Bruce is a lot like Remus in that respect. Showers necessary.) When we finally got down there, Sirius and Professor Snape were sitting there laughing! The twins tied the two of them up while Draco and I checked for imperius or any other mind-controlling spells/potions. Luna just serenely stood there and said "The abscines are finally gone," while Bruce sat there calmly drinking a cup of tea. Bruce, Sirius, and Professor Snape won't tell us what's going on until they get you out.
They've finally started working on breaking down the magical compounds in the knife. Draco's been helping a bit, as have the rest of us, but it's still really slow going. The potion takes almost a full moon cycle to brew, and there's still other stuff to do, but things should go faster now that Sirius and Professor Snape are getting along. Just hang on, Harry. It shouldn't be too much longer.
The twins say hi, Draco says keep being a Gryffindor (never thought I'd hear him say that), Luna said hello, Professor Snape and Bruce are going to write you letters, you see Sirius every week, and you just heard what I have to say.
We miss you, Shadow.
February 11th, 1997, 12 Grimmauld Place (Potions Lab)
"How much longer, Sev?"
"The same amount of time as when you asked ten minutes ago, Sirius. Five more days."
"How long will it need to sit before we can coat the handle in it?"
"And then it takes two months to separate and identify the compounds, and probably another month to get it through the ministry?"
"It will probably take more than two months for the compounds, depending on the complexity of the handle, and less than one month for the ministry. But about three months."
"Yes, Sirius, I believe I just said that."
"I'm sorry Sev, I'm just...I'm worried. Really, really worried. About Harry. He isn't...he's not doing as well as I've been trying to make it sound and I'm...what if he doesn't make it?"
"He's strong. He will make it. If you lasted twelve years, I'm sure Harry will last another three months."
"Yeah, but I wasn't sixteen when I was thrown in Azkaban. I hadn't been an assassin. I hadn't been kidnapped and tortured. And I didn't have at least eight dementors outside my cell at all times."
"...It's...it's that bad?"
"Yeah Sev, it's that bad."
"Just...I guess we have to have hope, Sirius."
"Have hope? If someone had told me a month ago that Severus Snape would be telling me to have hope, I would have told them to get their heads checked."
"If someone had told me a month ago we would be getting along, I would have killed them."
"Touche, Sev, touche."
I know we haven't officially met, but I'm sure you've heard some interesting things about me from your friends and godfather. They, however, have probably forget to tell you the basic stuff. I am an American citizen. Both of my parents died when I was young; my father was also an alcoholic. I was then raised by a foster family whom I loved dearly. They managed to send me off to college, where I tried to recreate a super-soldier serum. It went horribly wrong though, and the amount of gamma radiation released should have killed me. Instead, it mutated my DNA so that whenever I get too angry, I turn into a giant green rage monster called the Hulk. I lose all control, and "the other guy" is completely in control of my actions. Due to the potential destruction I could cause, I am wanted by the United States Army. If they get me, they will try to kill me. That is why I moved to Canada.
After being in Canada for several years, I befriended a man in my meditation class. His name was Remus Lupin. We quickly became close friends, and I decided to reveal my secret to him. I expected him to run away screaming. I did not expect him to calmly reply that he was a werewolf and wizard to boot.
Life was pretty peaceful after that, except for a few bombshells. The major one being the distrust of Dumbledore, which I'll explain more when we get you out. The other being he had to find a way to protect you. I promised to help in anyway I could.
I am planning on moving to Calcutta to help the people there overcome the illnesses that plague the area. You are welcome to join me, as are any of your friends and family. The more the merrier, and maybe between us we can figure out a cure, or at least a treatment. I hear you're quite good at potions.
Hang on. Show everyone you're as strong, or stronger, than they believe.
March 3rd, 1997, Unknown Location
"Too many of them stuck together after the war ended. They might be able to find something we missed evidence wise...there is a reason we were EST Omega, you know, sir."
"Yes, but Omega is missing it's brilliance, strategist, and fiery spark."
"I'm flattered...but Harry and Draco are quite intelligent, Sirius and Neville aren't half-bad when it comes to strategy, and that team can be rallied without Ginny...getting Harry out of prison is enough motivation for them."
"You truly are quite sharp. I suppose I did overlook the dedication those five had to Harry. What do you suppose the chances are of them finding something?"
"I don't know, sir...and honestly, I don't want to find out."
You know, it's a good thing you're thinking about living in the muggle world. I never thought I'd say this, but I think it's a great idea. I refuse to do it alone though, so the fact that you're considering it makes me feel better.
Would you believe that even though I was never a Death Eater, don't have the mark, and was disowned, people still think I'm a Death Eater. I mean, come on! How thick are these people. They act like a bunch of hippogriffs with their heads cut off unless Dumblebee is around to hold their hands. And to think I used to be proud to be a wizard.
We're so close, Harry. Just hang on until then.
April 12th, 1997, Azkaban Prison (Visiting Room G)
"Harry...Harry, come on. Stay with me, kiddo."
"You want to go to the muggle world when we get you out of here? What helped you decide?"
"You want to help the sick people with Bruce and you hate the way Draco is being treated?"
"Listen, Harry. We're almost done with the knife. We'll be able to get you out soon. I promise."
"Yes, you can, kiddo. One more month. Please, Harry. I can't lose you too."
To whom it may concern:
I have recently uncovered evidence that might be able to exonerate Harry J. Potter of the crime he was convicted of. I, in my full capacity as Lord Black, wish to present the evidence first to the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, and if they see fitting, I wish to call a meeting of the Wizengamot to debate the new evidence. I expect a response swiftly
Do not repeat past mistakes.
Lord Sirius Black
Trial Record Number: 711-731-196
Name: Harry James Potter
Crime: First Degree Murder of a Muggle (Marjorie Dursley)
Evidence: Murder Weapon (Knife, Found by A. Dumbledore)
**The knife was later found to be made of a compound the accused was allergic too. Taking that into account, the verdict has been changed to innocent.
Hatred of Victim
Verdict: Guilty *Innocent*
Sentence: Life in Azkaban (Dementors reinstated as of 14/11/96) **Revoked**
May 18th, 1997, Unknown Location
"He's free, sir."
"I know. We need a new plan."
"But nothing. Go find your boyfriend. It's time to strategize plan B."