Don't look back in Anger

Can some angry words change everything?

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/10669760/1/Don-t-look-back-in-Anger

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5. Lions and Toads and Basilisks, oh my!

No one paid particular attention to two witches entering a girl's toilet, even though most of the witches in Hogwarts avoided this particular female student's convenience - unless they were absolutely in desperate need. Since one of the witches entering this toilet was loony Lovegood - enough said.

Hermione and Luna lucked out again since Myrtle must have been away bothering someone else at the moment. They approached the correct sink and Hermione then hissed at it. Even though they had studied Harry's memory of the entire event, both were still rather surprised to actually see the sinks disappearing and a shaft opening up in the floor.

Luna looked down into the darkness before emitting a sigh. "It's a pity we don't have a professor to throw down there first. I can think of a few I'd like to chuck down a dark hole."

"Harry suggests using the Minister of Magic, and then closing the sinks over. It's really hard to argue against that, especially since I would get to close the shaft on the prat. Ah well, no point in standing here hoping. We should have known it would be bad when Harry described it as filthy, boys have a different definition of that word from us." Hermione pulled the hood of her robes over her head, trying to protect her hair from the worst of the mess, before jumping in.

Luna heard the long wail Hermione made on her trip down before the silence that Luna hoped meant she'd safely reached the bottom. Her friend's voice then clearly traveled back up the shaft. "You must be a bad influence on me, Potter. I might have enjoyed that slide, if it had been cleaner. Luna, come on down." Both Hermione and Harry were silently chuckling at the muggle telly reference Luna wouldn't have a clue about.

Following Hermione's example, Luna tucked her hair in her hood and jumped into the hole. Landing amongst bones of long dead small animals was certainly not Luna's idea of enjoyment.

Hermione had her wand lit and decided to check their extraction method worked before they went any further into the tunnel.

Dobby arrived with a pop, mere seconds after Hermione called his name. "Well done, Dobby. We weren't sure you would be able to find us down here, that certainly takes a load off our minds."

"Would Miss Grangy like Dobby to come with them? Dobby doesn't like leaving Harry Potter's friends down here on their own."

Luna chipped in right away. "That's a brilliant idea, Dobby. I will certainly feel safer with you around. How's Winky doing this morning?"

"Winky is much better, Miss. Just knowing she is wanted again is helping Winky, as is the strong magic of her masters. Winky says she is ready to get to work today, Dobby told Winky better to rest until tomorrow. Dobby wasn't sure if Dobby should have asked Harry Potter's permission first before telling Winky that…"

This time it was Hermione who jumped in. "Harry asked you to look after Winky, that's exactly what you did. Harry is very happy with your actions, Dobby."

The little elf for once wasn't really listening. They'd just come to the shed basilisk skin and Dobby's large eyes were nearly popping out his head. As they approached the cave-in, a snap of Dobby's fingers had an arched pathway cleared for them to walk through.

"…and that is why it's a brilliant idea for you to be with us, Dobby. Hermione and I would have spent ages trying to clear a hole big enough for both of us to crawl through."

Dobby then noticed the state of their robes, another snap of those magic fingers had both girls' robes cleaned.

"Harry, I could get used to having elves around. Dobby, you are simply the best."

This left the little elf blushing at Hermione's praise. Working for the Malfoys, being praised for his work was not something Dobby had encountered before.

The massive round door that blocked their entrance to the chamber soon moved after being commanded in parseltongue to open, Hermione and Luna were left wishing it hadn't. The stench was unbelievable, it left them choking for breath and barely able to see because their eyes were watering so badly.

Hermione was struggling to cast a bubblehead charm on herself, a spell that was difficult enough to accomplish without her currently choking while trying to perform completed magic. When Harry mentioned asking Dobby for help, Hermione quickly followed his suggestion. "Dobby, can you do something about the foul air?"

Another snap of his fingers and she could breathe normally once more.

"I think I now know why wizards bind elves to them. Elves must be some of the most powerful magical users on the planet." Harry then showed Hermione the memory of Dobby throwing Lucius Malfoy about as if he was a rag doll, he also agreed wholeheartedly with his girlfriend's analysis.

As they walked toward the basilisk, that powerful little elf was reduced to tears. "Dobby saw Harry Potter just after he had defeated this creature, never did Dobby think it was such a size. That Harry Potter was able to free Dobby the very same day makes him a greater wizard than Dobby thought."

The idea that Dobby's hero worship would or could grow even larger was not something Harry was comfortable with, Hermione teasing him that Dobby had a point wasn't helping.

Luna was looking at the decomposing creature in dismay. "Hermione, we're going to need something like an axe to get those fangs out its head. I'm looking around but don't see anything we could transfigure into the tools we'll need."

Hermione too, was disgusted at what they were going to have to do. Dobby may have cleared the air but the source of the stench was still sitting there.

The basilisk's skin appeared unbroken but there were slight ripples of movement underneath it. Whether this was caused by the basilisk slowly decomposing or there was some other organism in there actually consuming the giant snake was not something Hermione was keen to discover. In Hermione's book, anything that could eat a basilisk was to be avoided at all costs. The loud wet sucking sound alarmed both girls, that was until they saw one of the biggest fangs rip free from the dead creature's mouth and float toward them. It was soon being followed by another as Dobby made a little pile of deadly fangs in front of the two witches.

After they had half a dozen fangs, Hermione stopped Dobby removing any more. Even dead, the basilisk was still incredibly resistant to magic. All three teens could see the effort Dobby was having to exert to magically remove the fangs.

While Hermione was letting Harry take control to personally thank Dobby for all his hard work, Luna wore her dragon hide gloves to carefully wrap the fangs so they would be safe until required.

It was only after they were back in the tunnel, with the giant round door once more closed, that the group could relax.

"That was absolutely disgusting. I can't wait to get in the shower and be clean again, bags first dibs on it."

"Hermione, there is no way I could hang about listening to all that lovely clean water running and not jump in too. Harry's just going to have to shut his eyes because that shower is easily big enough for two, and I can't wait to be clean either."

This had Hermione laughing. "Luna, I think you just broke Harry. He can face that monster in there with only a sword in his hand, the thought of the both of us in the shower has him totally helpless. Dobby, can you get us out of here?"

Seconds later, all three were in Myrtle's toilet. Both girls were down on their knees, hugging and kissing the elf on his now blushing cheeks. Dobby had made what could and should have been a disgusting, arduous and even dangerous task into a relatively simple one. As a delighted Dobby popped away to check on Winky, Hermione and Luna got ready to go and deal with a horcrux.

Knowing that having Harry with her would give Luna the best chance to deal with the horcrux, Hermione made the suggestion. "Luna, with your memories from Voldemort, you know more about this than me. I think you should take Harry and I'll watch your backs."

With Harry transferred to the blonde Ravenclaw, they made their way up to the seventh floor. The door that appeared in the wall this time was different from the one that led to the bedroom they now used.

Looking around the vast cavern, stuffed full of all kinds of magical bric-a-brac, Luna grabbed a gobsmacked Hermione by the arm. "We need to stay together, Hermione. Not counting the horcrux we're looking for, some of the stuff in here could also be very dangerous."

Using Voldemort's memories, Luna led them straight to Ravenclaw's diadem. When she stopped though, Hermione kept going. "Oh, that's beautiful..."

"Petrificus Totalus!" Luna caught Hermione before she could fall and leant her against a nearby cabinet.

"The diadem has a powerful compulsion charm placed on it, Hermione. It wants you to wear it, just like Ginny couldn't stop herself writing in his diary. Having Harry in my head is protecting me from it. I need to leave you in a body bind while I deal with this."

Luna put on her dragon hide gloves and then unwrapped one of the basilisk fangs, before lifting the diadem down and sitting it on the floor. Without any hesitation, she brought the fang down on the large jewel in the centre of the headpiece.

At first, Luna thought it hadn't worked, then the jewel cracked and green smoke began to leak from the fault in the gemstone. That the smoke began to form into a shape had Luna rushing to Hermione and ending her spell. They clung to each other, rooted to the spot, as that shape became recognisable as Voldemort. The gaseous version of the dark lord then emitted an unholy scream, setting both girls off screaming too.

Hermione was reminded of the Wizard of Oz as the wicked wizard 'melted'. The green gas appeared to collapse in on itself and sink to the ground, leaving an oily looking black gunk behind on the floor beside the diadem.

Now it was over, Hermione managed to pull herself together but Luna was in bits. Luna was clinging to Hermione while sobbing her heart out.

"It's okay, Luna, it's over..."

"No it's not, Hermione. There's one of those disgusting things in Harry's head, and we still don't know how to get it out. I don't care whether we destroy the rest of them or not, all I care about is getting the one out of Harry - and he better be alive at the end of it. The ministry flung Harry in Azkaban and Dumbledore tried to get into your mind - screw all of them. I just want Harry cured, then the three of us can get out the country and leave them all to their own mess."

"Luna, that doesn't sound like you?"

This calmed her sobs, and even produced a strained smile. "Harry just said the same. You two are so in tune that sometimes it's scary. Hermione, my life changed the night I met Harry, and through him you. I couldn't go back to the way I was before, not now I've seen what's possible when I've got friends. That would be cruelty beyond measure..."

"Luna, I'm not going anywhere without you - and I'm willing to bet Harry has just told you the exact same. You said that thing's been inside Harry since he was a baby, that gives us time to figure this out."

The tears were streaming down Luna's cheeks as she looked forlornly at Hermione. "I don't think we have that amount of time, Hermione. That thing was woken in the graveyard, and seems to be getting stronger the longer Harry is kept in Azkaban. We need to get him out of there as quickly as possible, and get people who know a lot more than us working on this problem too."

Wrapping the crying Luna in a tight hug, Hermione tried to reassure both her and Harry. "We're out of here tomorrow, Sunday sees the best defence professor we ever had, a former auror and your father added to the team. We've also got you trying to wheedle the information we need out of Voldemort every night until we get Harry home. We can do this, Luna, you just have to believe that."

"I so want to believe, Hermione, I need to believe. The problem is I don't think that horcrux in Harry's head knows how to get itself out of there either. If it can't tell us, who can?"

"Voldemort was undoubtably a very clever wizard but no one can know everything, something Dumbledore has a tendency to forget. We'll find a clue, Luna, I know we will. Let's get out of here and turn this room back into your bedroom. After watching that, I'm even more desperate for a shower. I don't see any point in waiting on each other when Harry sees our memories anyway. Perhaps being in the shower with both of us will help him fight of those dementors later tonight."

Luna was wrapping up the diadem when she smiled and looked up to Hermione. "Harry's just recovered from that thought, he says seeing both of us in the shower will have him able to fight the dementors and Voldemort too."

-oOoOo-

Dumbledore currently had a fight on his hands, a fight he really couldn't win - since it was against three-quarters of Hogwarts. After the feast, he had to stand and announce the winners of the House Cup. Normally this would be greeted by cheering from the winning house, and polite applause from the other three. Tonight, announcing Slytherin were the winners was met with derision and loud booing from Gryffindor, Ravenclaw and even Hufflepuff. His peripheral vision caught sight of Minerva, Filius and Pomona leaving the hall in disgust. This acted as the catalyst for their three houses to stand and leave too, with only the rather smug Slytherins remaining in their seats.

Albus had no idea how many students this would eventually cost Hogwarts, for the greater good it was something the school was just going to have to accept. If these actions made one family take notice, leaving Britain for their safety, Albus thought it would be all worthwhile. After all, what was Slytherin winning the House Cup in comparison to children's lives being saved.

Until Fudge got his head out of Malfoy's arse, they were going to have to fight this war whatever way they could. Albus had called a meeting of the reformed Order of the Phoenix for tomorrow afternoon. While the children were heading to London on the express, the meeting would take place in the Hog's Head. Albus still didn't know what he was going to say to them, though one thing was certain. He wouldn't be mentioning that the person prophesied to have the power to beat the dark lord was currently locked up in Azkaban, or that same person was sure to leave the country as soon as he got out of prison.

He had of course noticed Miss Granger didn't grace tonight's feast with her presence, though Albus had hardly expected her to. He had made a grave error getting caught looking into her mind. Albus still believed he was right to make the attempt, the girl certainly had information he desperatly needed, it was only him getting caught making that attempt that he regretted.

This was not a view shared by Minerva or Amelia, something they wasted no time in forcefully telling him so. Amelia was particularly vociferous when explaining her views on the matter. She certainly recognised Miss Granger knew more than she was saying, but she also understood Albus Dumbledore had now made getting that information from the girl highly unlikely - if not impossible. There had obviously been an issue of mistrust between Miss Granger and the Hogwarts staff before this incident, Albus found it impossible to disagree that his actions had just massively reinforced that mistrust.

Like the rest of his staff, though Severus would probably never admit it, Albus recognised that Miss Granger was an exceptionally gifted young witch. Even he however was stumped at how she managed to pull off the stunt of getting Harry's letter out of Azkaban. They had cast spells on the handwriting, comparing it with some of his transfiguration essays. The high percentage of the match left no room for this to be anything other than written by the hand of Harry Potter. These spells had been developed to prevent cheating on exams, and as such were kept secret to deter anyone developing a way to overcome them. There was simply nowhere for Miss Granger to read about these spells, far less uncover a method to bypass the powerful magic involved.

He was forced to wait until Fudge let Harry out of Azkaban before being able to start working on those close to the boy, and once more hope to have some influence in his life. At the moment, the only people with influence over Harry still speaking to Albus were the Weasleys. Compared to Sirius, Remus and Miss Granger, that was like a row of pawns - with Ronald at best a knight - against a queen and two rooks.

Since the longer Harry spent in Azkaban, the more entrenched the views of those closest to him would become, Albus wanted the boy out of there as quickly as possible. His problem though was that Fudge had played, or should that be was being played, masterfully. Only his public approval rating taking a nosedive could sway the Minister from his chosen course of action. While Amelia's statement to the Prophet might have set a few alarm bells ringing, the ministry's control over that newspaper would prevent things getting anything like out of hand. Albus, Harry and the witches and wizards of Britain needed more, and quickly too.

He had no idea his wish was soon to be granted as Xeno Lovegood was about to let the genie out of the bottle in dramatic fashion.

-oOoOo-

After four years of sharing showers with her dorm-mates, Hermione was well used to the sights and sounds this communal activity produced. Today though, it had been very different. Knowing that every time Luna glanced in her direction, Harry would see exactly what their blonde friend saw made this shower decidedly and rather decadently different.

Initially, both she and Luna had been far more concerned with removing the grime of today, perceived and actual. After shampooing her hair for the third time however, Hermione had to admit to herself that she was obtaining a fair amount of guilty pleasure from knowing that Harry was watching her through Luna's eyes. This honesty was also a necessity because, when Harry joined her later, he would surely discover the truth.

She knew Luna held no issues whatsoever over Harry seeing and experiencing what she simply considered natural bodily functions. Hermione was beginning to see Luna's point but wasn't quite there yet. Her justification for this little show was a lot simpler. If seeing her in the shower helped Harry cope better with the time he was forced to spend in Azkaban, then it became a no-brainer for his girlfriend.

To help Harry face the horrors he was forced to deal with, Hermione Granger was prepared to go a lot further than let him see her take a shower if it helped her boyfriend. Those decisions could be made after she discovered from Harry if they really did help, or whether this was nothing more than a little guilty pleasure for both of them.

The one thing about sharing her mind with Harry was that there could be no secrets, and certainly no lies between them.

They exited the shower area to find fluffy white towels waiting on them, and their housecoats too. After getting dried and dressed, a pair of chairs and a table containing their meal then appeared. Dobby and Winky seemed determined to spoil them.

Since Luna was the one with Voldemort's memories, she would let Harry take control as they wrote the notes for Dumbledore. With both of them looking over those memories while writing, they should be able to log every detail available. This however resulted in Luna passing Harry over to Hermione so the couple could enjoy dinner together.

Luna actually enjoyed watching her friend blush as Hermione and Harry were obviously having a conversation about what had just taken place. Both girls could see from Harry's memories that he'd led a pretty loveless life up until this point, even the only memories he could recall of his parents were horrific and dementor induced. Luna could actually feel the boost in confidence Harry received by Hermione deliberately demonstrating to him how much she loved him.

With Harry, actions would always speak louder than words and Luna was delighted by Hermione's actions. In that relationship, Hermione was always going to be the one who had to take the lead. Harry simply had no reference in his life to compare against how a loving relationship should unfold and progress. Those disgusting relatives of his were certainly not examples he would like to emulate. Luna thought it was fair to say that discovering from Hermione he would never have to go back there again was, up until their shared shower earlier, the highlight of Harry's entire life.

They had a lovely meal together before Luna and Harry would need to start the notes for the headmaster. They would also need to ensure there was space on the notes to add any more information Luna discovered tonight.

-oOoOo-

Luna's eyes sprang open and Hermione got to see a whole other side of her friend, Luna Lovegood was absolutely livid. Harry joined Hermione as they waited to discover what had gotten their normally so placid friend angrier than they had ever seen her.

"Hermione, Dumbledore is not our friend, and certainly not to be trusted. Harry is a child of prophecy, and I know from sharing Harry that Dumbledore has never mentioned that fact."

"Luna, neither Harry nor I have any idea what that means…"

"There was a prophecy made before Harry was born. It was made to Dumbledore by Trelawney, Snape heard it and then told Voldemort. That's why the Potters were hiding, and that's why Voldemort keeps coming after Harry. 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 …"

"Oh shit! Harry's even angrier than you are at that news. He asked Dumbledore at the end of our first year why Voldemort was after him, the headmaster refused to answer. Dumbledore didn't lie, the headmaster just refused to give Harry the information he really needed - and we all think entitled to know. Does Dumbledore know Snape overheard the prophecy, and that he told Voldemort?"

"Yes. After hearing that, Voldemort sent Snape to get close to Dumbledore and be his master's spy. Snape begged his master to spare Lily's life, that's why Voldemort asked her to step aside…"

"What! Did Snape really think Harry's mother was just going to step aside and let Voldemort kill her baby? That sick greasy pig has made Harry's life a misery since he set foot inside Hogwarts, and yet he was responsible for making Harry an orphan in the first place."

Hermione forced herself to take a couple of deep breaths and try to calm down, not something that was easy to do with a very angry Harry exploding inside her head. "Okay, this news takes the situation to an entirely different level, one that is way beyond us. We need Sirius, Remus and your dad involved in this as quickly as possible. What about the notes and fangs, do we still leave them for Dumbledore tomorrow?"

Luna thought for a moment before answering. "While Dumbledore might not be our friend, he's certainly Voldemort's enemy. I think we can trust him to do whatever is necessary to finish Voldemort off."

Hermione was nodding at that. "Harry agrees, however reluctantly. Did you find any more information on those horcruxes?"

"The cave is near where the orphanage used to take the children to the coast on day trips. Dumbledore visited the orphanage with Tom's Hogwarts letter, he should be able to track that information down. The Gaunt shack should also be easy for him to find, a visit to the ministry and that information will be there."

Getting Luna talking had certainly bled some of the edge off her anger, Hermione brought up another subject to keep her on that path. "How did Harry fare against the dementors and Voldemort this time?"

"Oh Hermione, he was fantastic. I could see Voldemort trying to alter Harry's happy memory but he totally failed. Not only that, Harry's feelings for you were hurting Voldemort. He's so full of hate that Harry's love for you acted like sunlight on a vampire. After his first few attacks failed to have any affect on Harry, Voldemort stayed well back and hid. In you, Harry has a potent weapon that we might be able to use to hurt that piece of Voldemort inside your boyfriend. That's why I was so angry."

"Eh, sorry Luna, you lost both of us again…"

"If Harry's love for you hurts that piece of Voldemort in his head then we now have a place to start looking for a method to get it out of there. There are love based rituals that are every bit as powerful as those dark ones Voldemort performed on himself, and these love based rituals are certainly something he wouldn't have considered. With you both being virgins, that will increase the power of those rituals substantially…"

Hermione knew Luna's views on things like this were decidedly more liberal than those of her or Harry, this suggestion however was taking things just too far for the listening couple. She couldn't help the shocked gasp that escaped her lips. "Luna!"

Her blonde friend just continued as if Hermione hadn't said anything. "…I saw us getting that thing out of Harry, and then all three of us heading out of Britain - leaving our problems behind. Now, with this stupid prophecy, Voldemort would simply follow us. That's why I said we should still leave the fangs and notes on Dumbledore's desk. He takes care of them while we take care of the one inside Harry. After accomplishing all that, we would need to see what came next."

She then noticed the shocked look on Hermione's face. "What?"

"Are you saying I should have sex with Harry in order to get that thing out his head?"

"No, Hermione." Hermione's relief was short lived as Luna continued. "I'm saying you and Harry should make love to each other as part of a ritual, that should get that thing out of Harry's head. I would help Harry in an instant, knowing it would be saving his life. It wouldn't work with me though. I know from sharing Harry that he likes me, that sharing also tells me who it is he really loves. It's that love that will hopefully drive Voldemort out Harry's head. Harry just having sex with someone won't get the job done."

Seeing she had shocked Hermione into silence, Luna told her friends a few home truths. "Harry will be fifteen next month, you will be sixteen about six weeks later. My birthday is in September too, I'll be the same age as Harry. I've certainly had thoughts about sex, from sharing Harry we both know he has too. I seriously doubt you're any different from us. This is simply an option, Hermione, we still need to get Harry out of Azkaban before anything else can even be considered. Before discovering your love could hurt Voldemort though, we had nothing. You keep Harry tonight. Knowing we've found this, added to getting out of here tomorrow and spending some of the summer with my friends, I'll be fine just snuggling in."

Luna proceeded to do just that, and Hermione found herself just wrapping the blonde in her arms. All her focus however was turned inward. She wanted to know what her boyfriend thought of this idea.

Sensing her insecurities resurfacing, Harry did his best to reassure his girlfriend. "You must know I love you, and also think you're beautiful. Hermione, never doubt for a second that I desire you."

"What about Luna's suggestion, do you believe it?"

"I trust Luna with my life, she certainly believes it. I think we have to do what she suggested...and wait until I get out of Azkaban before discussing it further."

The deliberate pause in Harry's thoughts took Hermione's breath away, until he added the second part. "You did that on purpose, but you're also right." Hearing Harry chuckling inside her head was lovely, Hermione wanted some revenge though.

"Just remember, you get to be the one who tells my parents about the love ritual."

It was Harry's turn to be shocked into silence, while Hermione chuckled and snuggled into Luna. Tomorrow would be a long day, they just had no idea how long.

-oOoOo-

Breakfast that morning saw Hermione and Luna down in the great hall early, as was Hedwig with a parcel delivery for Luna from her father. It was copies of the latest edition of the Quibbler, and they were explosive. While the Prophet might have informed the witches and wizards of Britain what was currently happening to Harry Potter, the Quibbler went into areas its competitor wouldn't even dare. This issue of the Quibbler informed its readers the reasons behind why Harry Potter had been flung into Azkaban.

Hermione gave Harry control as he surreptitiously signed a couple of copies, doing so on Hermione's knee so the table hid just what they were up to. Luna then left to ensure there would be at least two Quibblers on each of the four house tables. She even passed one up to Professor McGonagall, just to make sure that the staff table had access to a copy too. She then returned to Hermione's side.

As Ron sat down across from them, all his preprepared questions died in his throat as Hermione casually slid a copy of the Quibbler toward him. The headline really said it all, Harry Potter - in his own words. Ron could only let out a low whistle at what the girls had achieved. An excited Colin then joined them.

"My picture was accredited, I wasn't expecting that. Please thank your father for me, Luna."

Hermione had something that would please Colin even more. She handed the boy his own personalised issue. His eyes nearly popped out his head as Colin tried to understand.

"How did he manage this?"

"Colin, this is Harry we're talking about here. He really did appreciate your help with this."

The only way Harry was getting out of Azkaban was if the magical public rose up and demanded Fudge set Harry free. Getting the word out there that Voldemort had returned was certainly phase one of that plan. Having the witches and wizards of Britain thinking Harry is even more powerful than they thought was phase two. They would then think Harry even more capable of dealing with the newly returned bogyman - Voldemort. Anything learned in Hogwarts today would quickly be passed on to the parents when their sons and daughters got off the train in London. Hermione was sure Colin would certainly show everyone what she'd just handed him.

Colin looked again at his new most prized possession. An issue of a national newspaper with a photograph of his on the front page, made all the more special because it was signed 'to my friend, Colin' with Harry Potter's signature across the bottom.

A first year Hufflepuff then approached, a couple of her friends tagging along for moral support. "Hermione, Harry thanked my father in the paper. How did Harry know his name?"

"Abi, if Harry can get letters out of Azkaban, don't you think he could find out your father's name? He managed this too." Hermione handed over another signed copy of the Quibbler. "Harry also knows about the pictures on your wall, this one's for you."

The girl could hardly breathe as she noticed what was written there, she read it out to her friends. "To my friend, Abi. Thanks for all your help, love Harry. Did Harry really write this?"

She held it up to Hermione, desperate for proof positive, but it was Ron who answered. "That's definitely Harry's handwriting, you could never fake that."

Hearing that from Harry's best friend, while Harry's girlfriend nodded in agreement, saw Abi clutching her precious copy to her chest and making her way back over to Hufflepuff with her equally astonished friends.

The staff missed most of this byplay, they were too busy gathered around the copy of the Quibbler Luna had handed to Minerva. While aware Voldemort had returned, all were rather surprised at the eloquent way Harry had laid out the happenings of that evening. It was precise, detailed, yet there was nothing in there to distract from the narrative of the important events. Harry hadn't mentioned Pettigrew or any of the death eaters who were later summoned to the graveyard by name. Pettigrew was simply referred to as a known death eater who killed Cedric and played a critical role in his master's return.

It was Harry's summation that shocked the staff of Hogwarts, they could imagine it having the same affect on anyone who read this.

I did not enter myself into the Tri-Wizard tournament. I was informed by a ministry official I had to compete, or lose my magic. What kind of choice is that for anyone to make? I did not murder Cedric Diggory, yet the Minister of Magic himself ordered my arrest. I am only fourteen but have been placed in the high security wing of Azkaban, with the Minister's Under-Secretary ordering the prison governor to double the dementor guards on the wing. The laws of the land are being bent, if not outright broken, in an attempt to force my support for the stance Minister Fudge has taken on the Voldemort matter, something I will never do.

With Voldemort's return, and our Minister of Magic too frightened even to acknowledge that fact, magical Britain is no longer safe for a number of its subjects. My advice would be to do the same as I intend to, leave the country at the first opportunity. Since the Minister was nice enough to declare me a legal adult, a decision that magically cannot be overturned or reversed, I have now spent my last day in Hogwarts and will be leaving Britain when they eventually see sense and release me from Azkaban.

While the staff may have missed Colin and Abi receiving their signed copies of the Quibbler, it was impossible not to notice the loud altercation that was now taking place at the Gryffindor table. When Weasley tempers were involved, shouting became the new norm.

Hermione spotted the long red hair out the corner of her eye, this was something she'd hoped to avoid. Ginny though appeared angrier than even Ron had seen her, and hell bent on a confrontation with the source of that anger.

"You're taking Harry away from us." The accusation was loudly spat at Hermione.

"Ginny, I seem to remember it was the Minister of Magic who ordered a pair of aurors to drag Harry away. Since I was there, and you weren't, I fail to see how you reached that conclusion..."

"You know what I'm taking about, Granger. Harry wouldn't be leaving Hogwarts if you hadn't decided to attend Beauxbatons. He's had the entire castle not speaking to him a couple of times before, fought a basilisk to save me and outflew a dragon - yet never wanted to leave Hogwarts. We were actually glad you decided to bugger off to France, Harry might actually get a chance to meet someone without you always hanging around. Hermione Granger wouldn't stand for that however. No, she is so selfish that she has to take our Harry away from us..."

Ginny was standing there, fists clenched in fury, as Hermione now stood to face her accuser. Harry was at a loss to understand what was happening here but Hermione understood - jealousy. She asked Harry if he had any objections to what she planned to say, he had none.

"Okay, let's work our way through that. The Minister of Magic chucked Harry into Azkaban for telling the truth, there's no coming back from that. Unless this country decides to do something about corrupt officials who feel laws don't apply to them, magical Britain is on the road to ruin. Yes Harry fought a basilisk to save you, but Harry would have still fought that basilisk to save Millicent Bulstrode - that's just who Harry is. Don't go reading anymore into the situation than that, you just happened to be there."

This raised a few chuckles, though outnumbered by shouts of 'leave Bulstrode down there'. Hermione ignored everything but the redhead in front of her.

"Where were all these people wanting to meet Harry when they thought he was the heir of Slytherin, or a cheat who entered himself in the tournament? There is no 'our Harry', he asked me to be his girlfriend - not anyone else. You are his best mate's annoying little sister, someone who sits making cow-eyes at him and runs away blushing if Harry even looks in your direction. Going for your wand would be another poor decision, Ginevra..."

Fred and George thought so too, especially with McGonagall bearing down on them. They grabbed their sister and began dragging her away. Ginny resisted furiously, until she spotted McGonagall. Remembering the twins motto, 'don't get caught', she relented. This wasn't over though, there was still a train ride to London.

Seeing her mere presence had ended the altercation, Minerva turned her attention to Hermione. "Can I assume, Miss Granger, that you refuse to pass on any knowledge of how Mister Potter achieved this letter too?"

Hermione didn't back down an inch. "Can I assume the headmaster won't try and enter my mind again to take those answers for himself?" The gasps that produced around the great hall just confirmed what she and Harry already knew, everyone was listening to what was happening here. They decided to use that to their advantage.

"Professor, there is a rather famous quote from an Irish muggle that I think works here. All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing. All of magical Britain is doing nothing while an innocent Harry lies in Azkaban, and this is the person who saved you all before. That is why both Harry and I will be leaving the country, no matter what anyone else says."

Hermione turned and walked away, leaving a stunned McGonagall behind. Luna quickly followed, as did Ron. He clearly had something to say but Luna got in first.

"Hermione, remember what happened when Madam Bones received her letter. I think someone else will be receiving visitors today."

"Oh hell, you're right. Ron, I'm gonna need your help on the train. Since we're leaving Hogwarts, I'll also be able to explain some of what is going on. Sorry about Ginny back there, she came looking for an argument and found one."

He just nodded his agreement to all of that. Keeping his mouth shut at the moment and not letting his own Weasley temper out was probably for the best. At least he would discover what was going on later.

-oOoOo-

Amelia didn't need to be a genius to discover what was going on here. Being summoned to the minister's office, and finding Dolores standing there with a copy of today's Quibbler in her hand.

"Madam Bones, I demand you take a squad of aurors and shut this publication down at once. We can't have people just making things up and passing it off as the truth."

"I'm sorry Minister, I can't do that." Before Dolores could butt in, Amelia cut the legs from under her. "I have already investigated this publication today. Xeno Lovegood received a letter from Harry Potter, laying everything out just as he reported it..."

"Impossible! Potter is in Azkaban..."

Again Amelia cut her off, this time by producing her own letter from Harry. "I received this from Mister Potter, while he was in Azkaban. I took it to Hogwarts and the handwriting was confirmed as his - as was the information contained in the letter."

Cornelius stared at the letter in shock, Amelia's version named all the death eaters who supposedly answered the dark lord's summons to the graveyard. "How is this possible, Amelia?"

"I don't know and, since I'm being blocked from speaking with Mister Potter, I have no way of finding out. The letter sent to the Quibbler is genuine, and Mister Potter insisted not a word of it be changed. That is why Xeno used the dark lord's name, rather than you-know-who. The Quibbler clearly states these are Mister Potter's own words, and they have the evidence to back all their claims up. There is absolutely nothing I could charge them with."

Amelia then found herself being dismissed and left the minister's office with a smile. It was hard not to as both Fudge and Umbridge appeared as if they were trying to lay ostrich sized eggs.

The door had hardly closed behind Amelia when Fudge pushed the panic button. "Dolores, you need to head for Azkaban immediately and discover what is going on. This is making us a laughing stock. We put him in our most secure facility yet Potter seems to have discovered a method of bypassing that security. Find out how he's doing this, and then put a stop to it. We need to get on top of this before all the owls start arriving demanding action."

Dolores stormed out Cornelius' office, promising under her breath to stop Potter - permanently if she needed to.

 
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