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.


4. Chapter 4

Harry decided to see just how far he could push Dumbledore, "I'm sorry sir, I think I must have done accidental magic. I was having a nightmare after hearing my innocent godfather was kissed by a Dementor and just woke up next to Hermione. I have to say though, given a choice, I'd rather wake up holding Hermione's hand than Ron's."

"You know perfectly well that Sirius escaped and that…"

Dumbledore was intentionally interrupted by Harry, "What? He escaped? Why didn't anyone tell me?"

"Why do you think we were here last night?" Dumbledore was almost shouting now.

"I've no idea sir, you came crashing through the door then, after making my head hurt, a Hogwarts professor tried to curse me before you dragged him out. In front of the Minister of Magic, too; he didn't seem too happy when he left here last night."

"You know what I'm asking, Lord Potter." Yes, he was definitely shouting now.

"I'm sorry, sir; I have no idea. I'm not really a morning person though, if Hermione here didn't remind me every morning what books we needed I'm sure I wouldn't be doing half as well in my classes. I haven't even had my morning cup of tea yet, what time is it anyway, Hermione?"

A purple-faced Dumbledore screamed, "How did you find out about Lord Potter?"

"Oh that," said Harry dismissively before continuing to lie. "Hermione found it when we were researching ways to help Buckbeak with his trial, quite a simple procedure really. Did you know I could have done it since my eleventh Birthday? Anyway, we couldn't think of a way to use it to save Buckbeak, I don't suppose he managed to escape as well?"

"Yes. The blasted Hippogriff escaped, why did you claim your lordship? Do you have any idea the extra work you have caused me to try and clean up this mess?" roared Dumbledore; his veins were now protruding in a reasonable impression of uncle Vernon.

"I fail to see that me claiming my rightful inheritance is any of your business, Headmaster." The last word was said with emphasis.

Dumbledore was now in full retreat, "You just don't understand, Harry, and some things are better left for me to handle for you."

"I'm sorry, Headmaster, but I fully intend to take up the mantle of Head of House Potter. Now, according to the books we read on the subject, that means only people of equal or higher status can call me by my first name. You're not a lord, are you sir?" Harry asked in his most non-threatening voice.

"No Harry, I'm not but…"

"Then kindly follow the proper procedure, sir. You, of all people, should appreciate the necessity of protocol in our society," stated Harry

Hermione's overbite was making an impression in her bottom lip as she tried her hardest not to burst out laughing at Dumbledore's antics. She decided to stir the cauldron some more. "Oh Harry, that means you won't have to go to those disgusting relatives anymore. I'll be able to tell my dad that he doesn't need to see our lawyer about contacting the authorities with details of your mistreatment. As a Lord, you will be able to do it yourself in front of the Wizengamot; you might even be able to get a trial for Sirius."

Dumbledore's colour had paled considerably; he was almost grey now. "There's no need to be hasty, I'm sure we can work something out, Harry."

"I'm sorry, sir, but that's Lord Potter and my arrangements out of Hogwarts, again fall under the heading, "none of your business," so please don't concern yourself with it. I'm sure you have enough on your plate with an escaped convict and dangerous creature both disappearing from Hogwarts." The headmaster almost appeared ready to reach for his wand before an angry Poppy pushed him out the way to check both her patients.

"You said two minutes, headmaster, and you've had a lot longer than that." The dismissal in Poppy's voice left Albus with nowhere to go but out the door.

"Where's Ron?" Hermione asked the healer.

"Oh, he was released for breakfast, you two seem fine so you can go and get cleaned up, it will be lunchtime shortly," she replied.

Both left and were heading to the dorms to change when they noticed a blonde Ravenclaw limping along the corridor, as they got closer they could see it was Luna and the reason for her limping had Hermione in tears while Harry struggled to control his anger.

Hermione hugged the shocked girl. "Luna, I never realised it was this bad. I'm so sorry but don't worry we'll help you with this."

The blonde-haired witch hadn't a clue what was happening, she knew this girl was Hermione Granger and everyone recognised Harry but what were they doing in the corridor talking to her? Hermione's hug almost panicked her until she heard the sincerity in her voice. Luna was sure she meant her no harm and Harry's actions confirmed this.

Harry pulled out his wand and took an oath, "I swear on my magic I will be Luna Lovegood's friend and never knowingly harm her." Hermione repeated the procedure.

"Luna, we can't explain at the moment, but we truly are your friends and I will take you under the protection of my house. Hermione and I are betrothed and have no intention of returning here next term but we want you to come with us," said Harry

Luna saw their betrothal rings appear as well as Harry's family ring.

"This is a secret, Luna, so please don't say anything until we're ready, but we do want you to come with us. No one will bother you again, we promise." Hermione still had tears in her eyes as she looked at the state of her best female friend.

These were the first kind words Luna had heard since starting at Hogwarts nearly two years ago. The school thought she dressed oddly but what most of them were unaware of was that she could only wear what her housemates didn't hide. Today's ensemble was really bad with the two right shoes leaving her left foot in agony. She didn't know what it was about these two but something just felt right, almost like déjà vu.

They helped Luna to the Gryffindor dorms where Hermione loaned her some clothes and a pair of shoes before the trio headed off to lunch.

The entered the great hall and the two Gryffindors followed Luna over to the Ravenclaw table and sat down with her, they were hardly seated when Marietta Edgecombe interrupted them, "Not enough room at your own table, or are you just interested in Loony's lies?"

The rest of the table were snickering at Marietta's wit but the three were just casually helping themselves to lunch. When they had sufficient food on their plates, Harry replied, "No, Miss Edgecombe, there is plenty of room at the Gryffindor table but we wanted to have lunch with our friend Luna." There was silence as everyone waited for the punch line; this was a joke - right?

Harry continued speaking in a calm tone, "You see, Luna is a good friend of ours and under the protection of the House of Potter so I would suggest that anyone sitting here who has taken or hidden any of her belongings immediately go and return them."

There was some nervous laughter before Cho Chang spoke, "Big bad Potter is so scary sticking up for the retard, those tactics might work in your house of dorks but here in Ravenclaw we…" the rest was cut off by the screams of people at the table, all of whom were looking at Cho in horror. Cho looked down at her hands and saw they were covered in wrinkles; she put her hands to her face where her beautiful smooth skin had more wrinkles than last week's bed sheets. She ran out the hall screaming while holding her face in her wrinkly hands.

Harry glanced at Hermione who had enjoyed that far too much. "Payback?" he asked.

She just nodded. "Ever since she tried to kiss you I wanted to rip her arm off and beat her with the wet end." Luna looked genuinely confused for a change, "We will explain it to you, Luna, but you're going to have to trust us for now."

Flitwick came rushing over, "What are you two Gryffindors doing causing trouble at this table?"

Hermione was still pissed at the treatment of her friend and here was a professor she respected blaming them without even finding out the facts. They were going to find out that a pissed off Hermione Granger was a formidable sight.

"Well, since you're asking so nicely, Professor, we're doing your job for you by putting a stop to the vicious bullying of a young student in your house. Oh, and just to reiterate to those denser members of the so-called clever house, immediate means get your arses in gear and return my friend's belongings before you all end up like the delightful Miss Chang."

There was pandemonium as witches climbed over one another in their haste to get to the dorm and return Luna's stuff. The diminutive head of Ravenclaw just stood there, unsure of what to do next. "Miss Granger, if there was a problem, you should have come to me with it."

"Yeah, like that was going to work. You had two years to sort this out; what we did took us two minutes and, trust me on this, they will never bother her again," raged Hermione.

"I can't fix something if I don't know about the problem," replied Flitwick.

Hermione was having none of it. "Then I suggest you sack the Ravenclaw prefects since they're obviously not doing their jobs properly."

The Ravenclaw head was starting to become irate at this slip of a girl highlighting the deficiencies of his house. "And I suppose Gryffindor is a utopia of peace and harmony?" he asked sarcastically.

"Not with the twisted twins present, who think if they call their form of bullying a prank then it's not only acceptable, but they expect praise for it. It's not cool but cruel to have younger housemates in a constant state of terror because they don't know what's going to happen next. Students like Neville keep getting their confidence destroyed by continuous and vindictive pranks, stopping him becoming the great wizard he is." Hermione was on a roll that nothing was going to stop.

The Gryffindor table was a mixture of sniggers at the thought of Neville as a great wizard, and stares that anyone would dare to challenge the twins; terrible consequences usually followed that folly.

McGonagall decided to intervene before things got out of hand and detentions and points got dragged into the issue. "I hardly think a few harmless jokes could be held responsible for Mr. Longbottom's abilities. If I remember correctly, Mr. Potter's own father was prone to carry out the occasional prank."

Harry stood on the bench and stared over at Neville, he was sitting with his head down, hating the attention. "Neville, there has been a Longbottom standing beside a Potter every time either went into battle for centuries. I would be proud to have you by my side when that time comes again. Yes, Professor, my father and his friends played pranks, but it was a time of war and they had chosen their side. Their pranks were set against a background of death eater recruitment, and seeing the people putting pressure on others to join Voldemort end up with pink hair and without robes gave others hope that the dark could be defeated. On the other hand, the Weasleys appear to be using students as unwilling test subjects for products they hope will make them money."

The squeals of terror at the mention of Voldemort's name had Harry shaking his head. "I really think I am going to adopt the Hufflepuff philosophy." The smug looks from that table were soon wiped off their faces by his next comments. "That means I look after my family and am loyal to my friends, and the rest of the world can go and screw itself. I've kicked his arse three times now yet you people still seem to want more, just what is it you think I owe you? Well here's some news for you, I owe you nothing and that's what you're going to get! The next time the dark dork turns up you're on your own. The death eater wanabees will all flock like sheep to kiss the half-blood's robes while the rest of you hide, too afraid even to say his name, far less fight back. You make me want to vomit!"

Harry took Hermione and Luna by the hand and started to leave a totally silent great hall when a voice he knew couldn't remain quiet called out, "Potter, how dare you call the dark lord a half blood like you."

The trio turned to be greeted with an indignant Draco Malfoy, Harry's wand did the 'Tom Marvolo Riddle = I am Lord Voldemort' in flames through the air.

"He's a former Hogwarts head boy and his father was a muggle. I say was because the psychopath killed his father and grandparents while he was still a student here. Now what makes you think anyone should listen to a squib whose family kisses the robes of someone like that and their father gets beat-up by a house elf."

A mad Malfoy fired a curse straight at Harry but Hermione, who immediately recognised the curse, stepped in front of her betrothed and deliberately let the spell hit her. Harry looked towards Snape as Hermione's front teeth began growing. "Are you going to take any action, professor?"

"I don't see any difference in Miss Granger's appearance, but I think that Gryffindor will be docked fifty points and you can have a week of detentions with me for that little flame spell you cast earlier." Snape's smirk was pure evil.

Harry glanced towards the head of Gryffindor and realised that, as he expected, no help was to be found there, the trio headed back to the infirmary where Hermione could get her front teeth shrunk to the size she wanted.

McGonagall just stood there with her head down, hearing one of her Gryffindors not only criticise their own house but basically tell the magical community they were on their own had shocked her to the very marrow of her bones. She wondered what Albus would make of it; she also wondered where he headed off to today in such a hurry.

Hermione was receiving treatment when Harry heard a nervous cough behind him and turned to see Neville standing there. Screwing up his courage, Neville asked, "Did you really mean what you said, Harry? You would want me beside you?"

Harry pulled Neville into a one-armed man hug. "Nev, I know you don't believe this, but you're a hell of a wizard. With Hermione by my side, you watching our backs and Luna taking care of all of us, we will be a force to be reckoned with. I know you don't believe this yet, but Hermione and I trust you with our lives."

Neville gave the impression of a mild mannered reporter turning into his alter ego, he appeared to grow taller and his shoulders squared as he proudly looked at his friend. Here was the wizard that Neville respected more than any other, including the headmaster; someone who continually stood up for what he believed in and, despite the odds, never compromised and never lost. He thought that Neville Longbottom was good enough to stand with him and this was a completely new experience for the shy, young wizard; he'd never had anyone think he was worth anything before.

"Neville, there will be some things happening over the next few days that you may not understand, but please believe me when I say that any plans we have will always include you and Luna." He turned toward the Ravenclaw girl. "Luna, you can trust Neville with your life; he will never let you down and is the true definition of a friend."

Neville and Luna looked at each other, both wearing shy smiles; tellingly, they didn't break eye contact until Hermione came from behind the medical screen flashing her 'new' smile. Harry pulled out his wand and a couple of plaques appeared above two beds, one read Snape while the other had Malfoy printed on it, "Just making reservations in case the ward gets busy." They could all see Harry wasn't joking.

The quartet left the infirmary to be confronted by a quintet of riled redheads, Ron wasn't pleased not to be part of the group in front of them, Ginny wasn't pleased that Hermione and Luna were, the twins were seriously miffed at being called bullies while Percy 'head boy' Weasley wasn't sure why he was upset, he just knew he was. Percy looked as if he'd just let go with a wet fart onto his starched underwear, the problem was of his own making but in typical Weasley fashion he wanted to blame somebody else for his mess.

Ron was attempting rightful indignation, but just sounded like a ginger whinger. "Harry, I thought I was your best friend. What are you playing at slagging off Gryffindor?"

"Ron, I have only one best friend," he pulled Hermione closer as both of them lost themselves in a kiss that had all the watchers speechless. The couple were still looking lovingly into each other's eyes when Harry spoke again. "I wasn't slagging Gryffindor, I was calling out the twins for their bullying."

The Weasleys protested en mass, but that was cut short when a spell hit the twins, transforming one into a greasy git and the other into darling Draco, what really turned everyone's stomachs was that they then proceeded to re-enact the kiss that Harry and Hermione had shared the minute before.

When the spell wore off both twins looked ready to commit murder but Harry silently summoned their wands before commentating on the prank. "Some people might think that was extremely funny, some extremely sick. Was it a prank or was it bullying? It all depends on your point of view. From my point of view that was a pre-emptive strike. These people here are my friends and under my protection, if anything happens to them, Dumbledore and Trelawney will be 'getting it on' on top of the Gryffindor table some lunchtime. Do I make myself clear?"

Both twins reluctantly nodded, Harry handed them back their wands before walking away with his arm round Hermione's waist, Hermione waited till they were passing Ginny before returning the gesture and leaning her head on Harry's shoulder. She nearly lost it to laughter when she heard Harry's voice in her mind 'you really are a little minx'. Neville and Luna looked toward each other, shrugged and followed the couple down the corridor.

The four ended up in an empty classroom as Neville was brought up to speed with the same information Luna had, he was delighted at the news of their betrothal. Harry and Hermione were giving classes a miss, but the other two had to go.

Remus Lupin was packing when Hermione and Harry entered. His eyebrows shot up as the couple proceeded to dispense locking and silencing charms. "What have you heard, Remus?" asked Harry.

"I haven't really heard anything. Albus just smiled when I asked him how he managed to save Sirius." He was astounded at Hermione's heated reply.

"That's because the old bastard did nothing to help Sirius, he wanted him kissed so Harry wouldn't have a godfather and would need to rely on the old tosser for support. We saved Sirius but wouldn't tell the old coot anything."

"I proclaimed myself head of House Potter and we think Dumbledore is trying to get it reversed to have me under his control, my betrothed and I can't allow that to happen under any circumstances. We need your help to get to Gringotts as something there is very wrong," said Harry.

Remus saw the rings appear on the youngsters' fingers; he was also a marauder and knew he wasn't being told the full story but here was the son of one best friend who, along with his betrothed, had just saved the life of his other best friend. "When do we leave?"


Just over an hour later and it was three different people who walked up the steps of Gringotts, they had travelled by floo from the Three Broomsticks to the Leaky Cauldron, stepped into muggle London to use a payphone followed by a quick trip to Madam Malkin's and were now attired in very expensive robes.

Remus and Hermione had strenuously protested their purchase but Harry pointed out that today was all about making an impression so the robes were an investment; both his and Hermione's robes had the Potter family crest on them. The Potter family ring pressed into the receipt was an accepted and preferred payment method anywhere in the magical world.

They had just entered Gringotts when the one person they didn't want to see came racing over towards them.

"What are you doing here? You must return to school immediately!" Dumbledore was trying to shepherd them out the bank but all three of them stood firm. The old wizard was getting angry and drawing attention to the escalating confrontation. "I demand that you return to Hogwarts, you have no business being here. If you don't return immediately then you will face expulsion."

Harry let some of his power show, as his magical aura was visible for everyone to see. "I am Lord Harry James Potter and who are you, old man, to tell me I have no business here at Gringotts bank. Are you afraid I'll discover just how deep your manipulations run? Who told you my status at the bank had changed when I gave strict instructions that was not to happen? With what authority did you disregard my parent's will? Who gave you the right to remove me from my innocent godfather and place me with muggles that the will clearly stated was never to happen? As you can see, old man, we have plenty business to discuss here and the answers will determine our next course of action."

They had now drawn quite a crowd and the boy-who-lived having a very public argument with the leader of the light would be in the Prophet before long. The mention of banking improprieties had goblins running for their supervisors and there was now a group of senior goblin officials heading in their direction.

The situation was spiralling out of Albus' control; the questions Harry was asking were ones that he definitely didn't want the answers to be known. He had to do something quickly. "Miss Granger you have no authority to be here and will return with me immediately."

He made a move towards the young witch when Harry stepped in front of her, "Miss Granger is here under my protection and with the knowledge and blessing of her parents. Any attempt to remove her will be regarded as an attack on the House of Potter and I will react accordingly." Harry had his wand pointed at the headmaster's crooked nose as gasps came from the now considerable number of onlookers.

"Lord Potter," said one of the goblins, "Could you please lower your wand, you and your betrothed will come to no harm while in Gringotts"

Harry's wand never wavered nor his eyes leave the wizard who it was pointed at, he couldn't help notice the look of absolute terror at the goblin's use of betrothed concerning Hermione. "Sir, can I ask your name?"

"I am called Master Zutekin, Lord Potter."

"Well here's the deal, Master Zutekin, I lower my wand and any harm comes to any of us while in Gringotts and I will hold you personally responsible." Harry left no doubt in anyone's mind what he meant by 'personally responsible'.

The goblin gave a slight bow before speaking. "That would be acceptable, Lord Potter."

Harry lowered his wand and before anyone had time to react Albus found himself with a sword poking him in the back as he was 'politely asked' to vacate the premises.

Harry, Hermione and a totally bewildered Remus followed Master Zutekin into a plush office where another goblin introduced themselves, "I am Sickyle and in charge of the Potter accounts…," Harry interrupted him immediately.

"That is still to be decided, I want to see the manager and I want to see him now!"

An extremely nervous Sickyle tried to placate Harry but he was well beyond that stage, "If I don't see the manager I will empty the Potter vaults and give an interview to the Prophet explaining why I have no confidence in Gringotts bank, now do I get to see the manager?"

Much to the displeasure of Sickyle, Master Zutekin intervened and had the group follow him to an even plusher office, which turned out to be no more than the waiting room for admittance to see Director Ragnok, Manager of Gringotts and Leader of the British Goblins.

When they entered the room Harry's demeanour changed noticeably, "Forgive this intrusion, Director, but I have been put in the position of not knowing whom I can trust at Gringotts, but if I can't trust you then there is no hope for this country."

"You are most welcome, Lord Potter; trust is a sacred thing at Gringotts and the thought of anyone breaking a trust distresses me greatly. Can you give me the details of this alleged transgression?"

Harry explained about demanding details of his claiming the head of house Potter be kept secret yet Dumbledore woke them with the news this morning, how is that possible?

Ragnok looked pensive for a moment before asking, "Are you aware that the headmaster is a master legitimist?" Harry and Hermione held up their hands wearing the betrothal rings, which surprised the goblin though he clearly knew what they were. "My congratulations my Lord and Lady, wearing those rings and still being together means you were meant to be. It also means that your thoughts would have been unreadable. Very few goblins knew of your change in status so rest assured we will find them, and quickly."

Harry nodded in agreement before continuing, "As you can imagine, I do not want to conduct any family business until this problem has been resolved, but there is another matter of which I will deal only with you." Ragnok nodded and the other two goblins left the room before he placed privacy charms around them.

"I would like the contents that were placed in vault 97 with the codename 'pureblood supremacy' brought to your office." Ragnok nearly fell off his chair in shock before reaching for a piece of parchment and writing instructions on it. Five minutes later there were twelve ornate chests, about the size of a small loaf of bread, sitting on Ragnok's very large desk.

Remus noted the coats of arms on the chests and recognised some of them, Malfoy, McNair, Lestrange and others. All were wealthy supporters of Lord Voldemort.

Harry stood and approached the first chest gave the password in parseltongue; the chest opened revealing a Gringotts vault key. Harry took the key and placed it on the desk, in front of the appropriate chest, before proceeding to the next one. In short order, there were twelve keys aligned along the desk.

"I have complied with all the security arrangements requested by these accounts therefore I have unlimited access to them as per the agreement, is that correct?" asked Harry

Ragnok couldn't speak, with the keys on the desk and the Potter account, this young man now held sway over more than half the gold in Gringotts, and some goblin had upset him! Finding the traitor was the number one priority of Gringotts bank; otherwise there might not be a bank. Noticing that Lord Potter was waiting for an answer, he could only nod in agreement that security had been followed to the letter.

I want everything removed from these vaults except one Knut; it has to sit in the centre of the vault along with a piece of parchment I will give you." Hermione immediately began writing twelve messages on pieces of parchment Ragnok supplied. "I want everything placed in the biggest vault you have and whether it, and the Potter account, stay here will depend on the secrecy surrounding these transactions. The first time these account holders find out about this is when they access their vaults and under no circumstances is anyone to find out who or how it was done."

A relieved Ragnok could see a glaring hole in his plan. "Lord Potter, forgive me if I overstep the mark but it will be front page in tomorrow's Prophet that you were here today and the smarter ones will draw their own conclusions. I would not wish the bank to be punished for this."

Harry and Hermione just smiled. "By removing their wealth it means they will have to come after us themselves, we will take care of the rest. We are going to have a meal; can I assume that I will be able to discuss my family accounts without fear of it becoming public knowledge when we return?"

"An investigation has already begun and I will be handling all of your accounts personally from now on," Ragnok replied, as this customer was effectively the richest wizard in the world.

Harry gave a slight bow before they were graciously escorted from the bank, anyone who had seen Dumbledore's rather abrupt exit at the point of a goblin sword couldn't fail to notice the difference in the goblin treatment of the boy-who-lived.

Remus was worried that Albus would be hanging about outside waiting on them but there was no sign of the old meddler, apparently he'd had his fill of public humiliation for now and would be awaiting a more discreet opportunity. Remus couldn't wait any longer and had to ask, "Just what in Merlin's name was that all about?"

Hermione jumped in, for all her changes she still loved explaining things. "All those purebloods gave Voldemort a key to their vaults, he set-up what he thought was unbreakable security, password to the vault then individual passwords on each chest in parseltongue. It was foolproof except Harry has the knowledge and the ability to speak parseltongue. We have dealt a massive blow to his finances and his supporters today." She looked so cute sharing knowledge that Harry just had to kiss her.

Harry was sitting in the most expensive restaurant in Diagon Alley and he was a lot more nervous about this confrontation than any of the others he had faced today, his whole future depended on this. Remus entered smiling, followed by Hermione and a woman who couldn't be anyone else but her mother. Emma was supposedly whispering to Hermione but they could all clearly hear her. "Hermione, when you phoned and said there was someone that it was imperative we meet, I should have known it would be one of your professors."

Hermione had a beaming smile as Harry stood up to greet them. "Mum, Dad, I would like to introduce you to my betrothed and future husband, Lord Harry James Potter."

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