Knowledge is Power

When Hermione gets cursed at the Ministry, Harry and the Death Eaters discover the power he knows not. Unleashing this power has far reaching consequences. Weasley and Dumbledore bashing – time travel story that's hopefully different.

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/4612714/1/Knowledge-is-Power

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12. Chapter 12

The Slytherin table was in disarray as the sensational news of the death eater purge appeared on the Prophet's front page and listed the names of those who had fled the country with their vaults emptied and property gone. There were quite a few sitting at breakfast that now didn't have a home to go to or a guardian to look after their welfare. With no head of house and Dumbledore not anywhere to be seen the joke circulating Hogwarts was that Trelawney was now in charge, unfortunately with almost fifteen years experience she actually was the most senior professor after the headmaster.

Draco sat contemplating what was in store for him next; his parents had fled the country while Severus seemed set for joining aunt Bella in Azkaban. With no relations and no gold Draco couldn't see any other alternative to an orphanage, any 'friends' he could have stayed with were all suffering from the same set of circumstances as him.

These bleak thoughts were interrupted by a flock of owls winging their way to every student in the same position, Draco ripped his envelope open and gave a visible sigh of relief. Here was an offer to accommodate him over the summer and continue to fund his education. He had a meeting tomorrow to discuss the details but any option other than an orphanage had to be good news, for the first time that week a slight smile crept onto the Slytherins face as he realised the happy consequences of the purge – he no longer had to marry Pansy!

-oOoOo-

The group was again on the beach and Harry could see the stiffness start to leave their bodies from yesterdays first session, he intended to push them slightly further this morning before doing something different again. After calling a halt beside the cliff after they had done one more circuit of the beach than yesterday Dobby again appeared with his wonderful energy drink but no gillyweed today. Instead he began conjuring dummies and fixing large sheets of parchment to the cliff face above the dummies heads.

"When we began our training, the room of requirements provided us with everything we needed to learn to fight. The parchment will show animated diagrams of defensive and offensive moves and will design these around your physical ability and personality. Hermione is pure offence, she attacks until her opponents are down while Luna used to dodge everything thrown at her but strike like lightning as soon as an opening presented itself. Neville became the most physically powerful of the group and once ripped a dummy in half because it had managed to land a blow on Luna, yes the dummies can be animated but we're a few weeks away from that I think." Harry knew he had their full attention so decided to give them a little demonstration.

Hermione could tell through their rings what she was expected to do so walked up to Harry and carried out the exact same move she had flattened Sirius with, her betrothed flew through the air but twisted and landed on his feet with his wand pointed right between her eyes.

The wand disappeared before Hermione came over and kissed him, they turned to see the rest of the group looking at them in wonder.

"How the hell did you do that?" Sirius demanded

"Well we just put our lips together and do what comes naturally, I know you've been out of circulation for a while Sirius but I didn't imagine I was going to have to give my godfather the talk!"

Sirius held him with a glare that said he was tired, sore and in no mood for jokes.

"Oh you mean the flip thing, it's called training which is why we're all here. It might just save your life one day and it impresses the hell out of chicks!" Hermione's slap to the back of his head had everyone laughing, she new exactly what he was doing and why, if you had the energy to laugh you could push yourself just a little bit more.

"My beautiful betrothed will now give us a slight demonstration on how to use the dummies."

Hermione turned round and immediately gave a more than passable impression of the cartoon Tasmanian Devil, she reacted so fast that the dummies head was rolling on the sand before most of the group knew she had moved. Harry was beginning to think that transfiguring the dummy to look like Ron and wearing an 'I love Potions' t-shirt was maybe a bit too much, his Hermione had exploded at first sight of the dummy and he was slightly worried that he would be her next victim but dad saved the day.

Dan Granger put his arms around his trembling daughter and kissed the top of her head, "you have no idea how good it feels as a father to know that my daughter can kick the arse of anyone who tries to bother her."

The adrenalin coursing through her blood at the sight of the dummy dissipated as her father's arms held her, she had longed for this experience all the years she was growing up. Her parents were really grasping their second chance with both hands.

She turned and gave her father a hug before kissing his cheek, "thanks dad."

She then turned to her love and held her arms out, he almost apparated into them, "sorry love but that wound is just a bit too raw at the moment, we now know what that bastards interference could have cost us. The Weasleys will really have to stay out of our way for the foreseeable future."

A kiss later and everything was back to normal.

"Now this beautiful lady moved slightly quicker than I had intended but we can ask the parchment to slow the action down, the darker the colour and size of area affected is an indication of how much damage the blows would have done to a normal body."

The groin area became black and spread towards the black area now emanating from its chest. Most had caught Hermione's spin and elbow into its throat that resulted in the head now sitting on the beach.

Harry found himself having to cough a couple of times to get his voice back down to it's normal tone as the black swelling in the groin area seemed to have the same eye watering effect on all the males except Dan, his 'that's my girl' expression was beaming out pride at a wattage to rival any FM radio station.

"We'll teach you how to hit, the dummies will glow indicating where to hit and the parchments tell you the damage your blows would cause." Harry and Hermione then had the group practicing basic moves while Dan took to it like a duck to water, he was throwing combinations by the time they were finished. The dummies and parchments assessed them individually and pushed each member to their limits.

It was a sweating but satisfied group who headed off for showers and breakfast.

Daphne Greengrass was enjoying her day that had started with the dreaded letter from home, delivered via Gringotts, as it would take a couple of days by owl.

The whole of magical Britain was talking with the name on everyone's lips being Harry Potter, her father had heard whispers of prominent purebloods fleeing the country with their tails between their legs and was delighted his daughter had allied herself with the house of Potter. Being that fence sitting was almost embedded in the Greengrass genes her father would wait for developments before taking any drastic action like declaring alliance.

They were currently being taught charms by professor Flitwick and, because the class was so small, being allowed to work at their own pace instead of having to wait on Crabbe and Goyle having everything explained to them six times. The lessons, learning environment and classmates that she could be herself amongst all helped to make her believe that standing up on Monday morning was the best decision she ever made.

The warm Italian sunshine and beauty of the Amalfi Coast was slowly melting the ex-Slytherin ice queen.

Pomona, Minerva and Poppy were sitting trying to organise what the Institute needed to get done before being able to open on September first, Minerva was noting all that they would need to buy and the Scotswoman was fast approaching overload at the running total so far, Hogwarts would never be able to afford this but then she was one of very few people who knew of the financial manipulations that went on, and with ministry approval.

The pureblood dogma that muggle borns shouldn't be allowed to attend was utter rubbish since without them the school would close. They paid in some cases fifteen times more fees that the purebloods for two reasons, their fees were comparable to the best muggle boarding schools and if purebloods were charged the same most of their parents wouldn't pay. As there children were either going to be married off or get jobs due to their families influence why waste all that good gold on an education.

The result was that Hermione's fees for the last three years would probably pay for the entire Hogwarts education of all seven members of the Weasley clan. She had been debating with herself whether to pass this information onto Harry, the Institute targeting of the muggle born students could end up closing Hogwarts but this story in the press would cause uproar of epic proportions. She had to tell him and let the group decide what to do with the information, she was nothing if not loyal and she had decided where her loyalties should be when leaving that Monday morning.

Pomona and Poppy were amazed at the European syllabus that actually had potions and Herbology closely linked but with healing included as well. The students had to understand the plants, the potion and the effects they achieved on the body. Again the equipment needed to start potions, Herbology and an infirmary from scratch would not be cheap.

Harry and Hermione were working with mum and dad to make arrangements for the Hogwarts students that had basically become orphans; with their parents on the phone both teens had dossiers for each student and were writing in the arrangements as they were worked out. Dan discovered two things, they badly needed computers with Internet access and the Gardiner credit cards had no limits. Amelia had also sent through a list of qualified ministry personnel that would be assisting with the plan.

-oOoOo-

Albus had received notice that his presence was required at the ministry tomorrow to discuss irregularities relating to Hogwarts. After reading about the death eater purges he suspected Severus had given the DMLE information but he was aware that the potions master could overcome truth serum and was impervious to mind scans.

There was also the fact that Amelia hadn't turned up with those two pet aurors of hers yet which would definitely be the case if they broke Severus. At most he was going to be getting a dressing down for his treatment of that little shit Potter, as long as they didn't cancel the tournament Albus would listen to their bullshit all day.

-oOoOo-

Harry, Hermione, Dan and Emma met with Amelia and both aurors in Hogsmead, Albus had already left for his day at the ministry so they should be free from interference, especially since it appeared in the Quibbler that Harry had a high opinion of Madam Bones and felt that if she was in charge he wouldn't have had to leave in the first place. She was a shoo in for becoming the next minister of magic.

Dan and Emma were pretty sure that these two were gong to use this opportunity to complete the task they had to do in Hogwarts so they were not going alone and both Grangers now carried guns.

They entered the castle and the laughing teens had to guide their parents by the elbow as they gawked at their surroundings before managing to get into the classroom that had been commandeered for their use. They quickly got organised before sending for the first appointment of the day, Draco Malfoy.

Draco strutted into the room and almost ran back out when he recognised who was waiting for him. "Malfoy if you leave this room then you must know the only decisions are which orphanage to place you in and what to do next year when you can't afford Hogwarts," Draco had stopped so Harry pressed home his advantage, "it's not very Slytherin of you to leave before even hearing the proposal, take a seat and I promise that you will get to accept or decline my offer."

Draco sat in front of the panel of five with two aurors standing behind him.

"I won't waste your time so here's what we're offering, non-magical people in America have what's known as summer camp. It's people your own age who get together to do outdoor pursuits and basically have a lot of fun. You would have to live as a muggle for the summer but on September first you would be attending Salem Academy of Magic to continue your education there. Please don't think of this as some sort of punishment, you have been told your whole life that muggles are beneath you without ever having any experience of them – this is to provide you with that opportunity."

Amelia spoke, "the ministry is assisting in this venture but it is being totally funded by Lord Potter with all fees, travel arrangements, equipment, clothes and even an allowance to be paid monthly. You are well aware of the alternatives and if this is Lord Potter's idea of punishment then he can punish me anytime – it's costing him a fortune!"

Draco sat quietly, living as a muggle for two months then being allowed to attend Salem or go to an orphanage and depend on someone's charity to continue his education. The name Malfoy would now count against him and he would need a good education to make any headway in life. On paper it wasn't a hard decision but there was one thing that was driving him crazy, why was Potter doing this?

The idea that there would be no gain or a debt to be paid off somewhere down the line was inconceivable to the Slytherin and he couldn't see Potter's angle. What did Potter get out of Draco Malfoy saying yes? He felt that if he understood that then he could fight it but how do you fight an unselfish act.

He said the only thing he could say," I'm in!"

He was to meet Tonks off the express where his trunk and wand would be sent on to Salem, he would spend the weekend staying in a muggle hotel, shopping, getting a passport from Gringotts before flying to New York on Monday, accompanied by ministry employees with the appropriate background. As everyone was being sent to different camps all over America he would join them all in Salem.

Draco left with his head spinning and the only fact that stuck in his head was that Bones was right, this must be costing Potter a fortune.

After the last interview had finished Harry glanced towards Hermione who'd been studying the Marauders map all day, a nod of her head and a "still there!" was all that he needed to hear. They had originally planed on sneaking out for a second and using the time turner Hermione still had to complete their tasks un-noticed but mum and dad would never forgive them so the group of seven headed into a girls toilet to find a red haired witch kneeling at a certain sink.

Ginny was distraught, sobbing and looked as if she had been for days. When she saw Harry the glimmer of hope in her eyes was heartbreaking to see, she threw herself at his feet with her speech being interrupted with soul wrenching sobs. "Oh Harry, I prayed for you to come.. sob … can't open it… sob …wish you left me down there … sob …tried to jump of tower… sob …magic wont let me… sob …never be found in chamber… sob …being sold to buy new house… sob …die before let old bastard touch me." At this point she became so bad that they couldn't understand a word.

Harry glanced towards Hermione and received his answer; she had total faith in Harry but wouldn't trust the red haired bint as far as she could throw her, which come to think about it was pretty far.

Harry knelt beside Ginny and scooped her into his arms, "Schhh Ginny, if you can't tell us the problem then we can't help."

After a minuet or so she was coherent enough to get her main points across, "the burrow is destroyed so my family are arranging for me to be married this summer to the highest bidder."

"MOLLY!" shouted Hermione but Ginny shook her head.

"Dad, and those selfish bastards of brothers are arguing who gets biggest room in new house."

Dan Granger was just getting used to the role of loving father and found he liked it a lot, this distraught young girl reawakened the emotions he felt during the bank fight. "Let me see if I've got this right, your house got destroyed so the family is going to sell you to the highest bidder in order to rebuild?" Ginny nodded and Dan whirled on Amelia, "please tell me this isn't legal."

Amelia bowed her head, "I assume she's talking about a betrothal contract and bride price in which case it's perfectly legal. They probably took her wand and her family magic will prevent her harming herself so she was unable to jump off the tower."

Both parents turned to Hermione, well aware that she would be the one they would have to convince, "we have to help here, I know we have the whole potions issue to deal with but what kind of sick bastard sells his own twelve-year-old daughter and what would that make us if we could help but didn't." Hermione had never heard her mother swear and that made her think more than anything else.

"Did Ron try a potion on Hermione? Is that why you guys left?" Ginny asked confused.

"We found out he was going to make the attempt." Harry answered diplomatically

"I didn't know," Ginny answered truthfully.

Hermione asked bitingly, "would it have made any difference to you if the result was to split me and Harry up?"

Ginny was young but even she realised her future could hang on this answer so decided to be completely truthful, "I was honestly so in love with Harry that I would have took him any way I could, there are so few genuinely good people out there and even my own brothers are heartless bastards. Being told that I'm to be sold has changed my opinions on everything, my eyes have well and truly been opened and no one should ever be forced in that position. I hadn't heard about the potion though I certainly wouldn't be shocked if he did."

Hermione had so many conflicting thoughts and emotions running through her head, she wasn't sure what to do and Harry was wisely staying out of her mind as he recognised this was a decision she had to reach on her own. This Ginny hadn't done anything yet and knew nothing of the plot to use potions on her, Hermione also recognised that their interference in the timeline must have caused this event, even if the other Ginny had been sold after they had closed down Harry's Gringotts account that the Weasleys had been stealing from that Christmas she still felt responsible.

Hermione already knew what her betrothed's answer would be, shit they just spent all morning trying to save Malfoy and his cronies. Hermione had no option but to give Ginny the same second chance that they were enjoying but first it was time for a few home truths.

"Ginny, Harry and I are betrothed and anyone tampering with that relationship would find themselves in serious legal trouble. I will become Lady Potter this summer and although allowed by law to take more than one wife trust me when I say this lady's not for sharing. Harry is well aware of my position and agrees with it, if you can accept this and move on we can help you, if you make a move on my man I guarantee what happened to Snape will seem like a picnic compared to what I'll do to you."

"Hermione I have tried three different ways to kill myself rather than face being married to some unknown old man, I would swear on my magic never to hope for anything more than friendship from both Potters but that bastard Percy took my wand again. I already owe Harry a life debt and would certainly consider I owed my life to whoever rescued me from this situation. If you can help then please, I'm begging here and will do anything you ask of me,"

A quick discussion over their bond and it was settled, "Amelia can we take her with us?" Harry asked.

"No, it would be classed as kidnapping. The only reason it worked on Monday was that you had no prior knowledge of the oaths and then did everything in your power to save them triggering their oaths. If Miss Weasley were to be given a wand to make any kind of oath to prevent this betrothal the person responsible would end up in Azkaban."

"These laws are nuts!" Emma declared.

"Our society is dominated by pureblood males who make the laws to suit their needs, who do you think would be purchasing Miss Weasley? Our society is roughly about a century behind yours in values and technology, and as long as the old guard stay in charge that's the way it will remain."

Harry looked at Ginny and saw a small, frightened child that needed reassurance as much as her body needed air. "Ginny, we will help but we came here to do a very important job and have to enter the chamber again."

Now that she had some hope all desire to enter the chamber evaporated and she decided to wait in a cubicle for their return, Ginny provided the first laugh of the afternoon when she told them Myrtle left, apparently Ginny's incessant crying was driving the ghost mad.

Dan Granger felt as if he was in an Indiana Jones movie as small bones crunched under their feet while they walked along the wand lit tunnel, he was even wearing a leather jacket and a gun in its holster with only a whip and hat missing.

As if sliding down a giant tube wasn't enough to reinforce the image they were now standing in front of a massive round metal door that Harry was speaking to in that strange hissing language. Parts of the door animated before the whole thing swung open releasing the most noxious smell Dan had ever experienced, before he could even complain his head was surrounded by a goldfish bowl filled with clean air as Harry then led them through the door.

His future son-in-law had described the Basilisk as a big snake but that was a bit like describing King Kong as a large monkey, technically accurate but severely lacking on the grandeur of the beast, it was bloody enormous!

The thought of twelve-year-old Harry fighting this abomination with a sword to save the life of the petite witch they had just left forced Dan to sit for a minute as the enormity of the task and bravery of this young man he was growing to love hit him.

He glanced around and could see he was not the only one having such a reaction, the three women were in tears while auror Shacklebolt was leaning against the wall as they all tried in vain to comprehend the achievements of the wizard known as Harry Potter.

He was surprised at Hermione's lack of reaction until remembering that she would have gotten to experience the whole thing through Harry's memories, definitely not something he could imagine was a pleasant memory and feeling his emotions as well!

As a couple their relationship was so strong because it had been forged in the heat of battle with enemies on all sides and their unquestionable belief that they would die before allowing the other to be harmed. This knowledge was truly humbling to Dan as he watched his daughter and her love extracting teeth while two dentists were so overcome with emotion to be rendered useless.

Dobby popped them back into the toilet two at a time and it was Amelia who spoke first, "Lord Potter the picture in the Quibbler just didn't do your heroics justice, why weren't you recommended for an order of Merlin?"

It was a very bitter Hermione who answered, "He saved Ginny, Hogwarts, Dumbledores job and cleared Hagrid's name while getting him out of Azkaban and his reward was to be sent back to Privet Prison and isolated from everyone who cared about him. If we didn't need the old bastard I swear I would take great pleasure in kicking his decrepit arse into next week."

Harry put his arms around her and kissed her neck, "never change Hermione, I love you just the way you are."

Any smidgen of hope that Ginny had left of a relationship with Harry died there and then, she could see the utter devotion these two had for each other.

Amelia looked on as Harry walked up and down in front of a blank wall giving a gasp of astonishment as a door made an appearance and once again Harry led the way in.

Harry was wearing dragon hide gloves as he lifted a tiara down which brought a scream from the red haired witch, "That's the same as the diary! Harry I can hear it calling to me, please don't let it get me again."

Emma held Ginny tightly as Hermione handed Harry a tooth from the Basilisk and he quickly stabbed the tiara.

Screams louder and containing more terror than Ginny could ever produce came from the inanimate object as a smoky humanoid form leaked from the centre jewel before dissolving into a black goo on the floor that Hermione quickly banished.

Amelia's legs gave way as she found herself on the floor with two aurors standing above her with wands drawn, unsure what had happened to their boss but determined to fight it. The phrase 'same as the diary' had triggered her collapse as soon as she worked out what the tiara was, oh dear Merlin how many more were there?

She asked Harry the question with a glance and his answer of "seven" had her head spinning and the aurors starting to get really agitated. She held up her hand to signal that she was ok and they could calm down. "Can you give me any details?" she asked Harry.

"That's the third one destroyed, we have one at Gringotts that came out the Lestrange vault and we can now use the same means to destroy that as well. We know the location of the rest and will retrieve them and administer the same treatment, as you can imagine this must stay secret and only Hermione and I have this knowledge. If this information got into the wrong hands it could totally screw us up."

"Anything you need, anything, anytime – it's yours for the asking. If you pull this off our world will owe you a debt that could never be repaid, Merlin they already do!" The sincerity and respect in Amelia's voice was there for all to hear.

Shacks questions were met with a shake of the head, Harry was right, the fewer people who knew about horcruxes at the moment the better for everyone.

Ginny was assured once more that they would help before the seven beat a hasty retreat pre-empting the return of Dumbledore.

-oOoOo-

Arthur Weasley was lying alone in the borrowed magical tent contemplating his life in relation to his decision to place his only daughter on the betrothal market.

His mind drifted back to what he considered the pivotal moment of his life, meeting Molly Prewett, the red head that changed his world. She came with a reputation but shy Arthur was just glad she came; his total experience up until that time had been a few kisses and a fumble in a broom closet as a dare. She seemed to see something in him that no one had before, or since if he was being truthful. They married as soon as he got a job in the ministry; she kept him well-fed and warm at night with Bill making an appearance less than a year later.

While his pure blood status almost guaranteed him a job at the ministry the lack of money and family prestige placed him on the lowest rung of the promotional ladder. Arthur believed that as a pureblood wizard he actually was better than the rest but being a poor junior clerk in the department dealing with muggles meant he had nothing to offer the death eaters, and when the great Albus Dumbledore asked him to join the light side Arthur was so flattered he said yes.

He was regretting his decision up until little Harry Potter finished of the dark lord; Arthur thought he would be rewarded for joining the right side only to have his earlier fears confirmed and his dreams of prosperity dashed. Gold and a family name could apparently get you out of anything and the death eaters were all still lording it over the perpetually penniless and now blood traitorous Weasleys.

His career had crawled along at a snails pace but then he wasn't actually working his arse off, Arthur had found his niche and in this night of honesty probably his level as a wizard as well – dealing with biting tea cups was quite enough for him.

Of all his children Ronald was probably the closest to Arthur in ability and personality in that he expected maximum returns for minimal talent and effort in whatever field he chose. The owl requesting he spend the summer with his new girlfriend confirmed his opinion that the boy did most of his thinking using a part of his anatomy that was not his brain.

Molly and Albus had been cooking up some scheme for years to get Ginny into the Potter family and solve all their monetary problems at one fell swoop, Arthur had been quite happy to go along with that but it would appear to have blown up in their faces. A bit like the burrow since they had now determined the spell signatures that destroyed their home all belonged to Molly, leaving Arthur with the choice of the family living in a tent while they saved for years to try and rebuild their house and replace lost belongings or offer Ginny for betrothal and rebuild now.

Arthur considered this a 'greater good' decision and eased his conscience with that thought, the needs of the many out weighed the needs of the one. He would try and choose someone who wasn't too terrible for Ginny but at least she would have money wherever she finally ended up.

It was the cold light of day before Arthur had convinced himself that, as head of a pureblood family this was the only choice available to him. He had just roused himself out of the borrowed bed when his name was called from outside the tent, reaching for his wand Arthur found three goblins standing waiting on him.

The goblin in charge gave a look of distaste at the interior of the tent before speaking, "a client I represent has heard of your situation regarding the youngest female Weasley and would like to make you an offer." He pulled out a folder and handed it to Arthur.

He opened the folder and gazed upon the prettiest manor house he had ever seen, glancing at the details it was in Cornwall, had ten bedrooms with six bathrooms, reception rooms and a kitchen Molly would kill for. It also had extensive grounds and came fully furnished.

"My client would like to do a straight swap, the deeds to this house in exchange for your daughter. This is a one time only offer and the papers must be signed this morning or the deal is off, we can of course portkey to the property and allow a viewing."

Arthur was so eager he forgot that he hadn't dressed yet and was stood in just a shirt, pyjamas burn just as well as houses.

It took less than five minutes for the head of the Weasley family to make up his mind, as soon as he entered the house his decision was made and the documents were signed on his new dining room table without even asking who their client was.

-oOoOo-

The Hogwarts express was pulling into Kings Cross and Ginny Weasley was a nervous wreck, the second Harry had left Hogwarts her mind started throwing 'what ifs' at her. What if Hermione changes her mind, what if they want too much gold, what if she was already sold, the list was endless getting more and more unlikely but no less terrifying as time slowly passed.

Ginny retrieved her battered old trunk and trundled towards her beaming father, this could be very bad.

When all the Weasleys had gathered round Arthur made his announcement, "the Weasley family has a new home!"

Ginny's insides turned to lead as she dreaded the answer to the question she had to ask, "Who did you sell me to?"

From behind her a very familiar voice answered, "That would be me!"

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