Categories > Books > Harry Potter > Partially Kissed Hero

Partially Kissed Hero 39

by PerfectLionheart 0 Reviews

During the train ride before third year Harry has a close encounter with a dementor that causes him to absorb the soul fragment within him, granting both knowledge and power. Features Harry with a ...

Category: Harry Potter - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Fantasy - Characters: Harry,Hermione,Luna - Warnings: [?] - Published: 2009/09/05 - Updated: 2009/09/05 - 5814 words

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Partially Kissed Hero
Chapter Thirty-Nine
by Lionheart

I I I

Sirius Black was a happy man.

He'd not expected to be. Not long ago it would have been hard for his life to get worse. First Azkaban, then life on the run as a hunted fugitive, eating table scraps and what he could catch as a half-starved, mangy hound...

Then he'd caught a wiff of fried chicken and life had taken a decided turn.

Now he was in France, exonerated and a free citizen. Amelia was right, the French had been only too glad to grant him a trial, if only to tweak the noses of the British, and what a tweak it was! Now half the newspapers in Europe were running the story of him having been framed then locked away by some of the most respected British citizens seeking to hide their own crimes.

This would have been a minor flash in the pan save for the Prophet Disaster following almost immediately on its heels, then the Wireless Expose later in that same day!

Most people in the ICW had not lived through greater shocks. Even those old enough to have lived through the war with Grindelwald had not had so much information about their enemy dumped on them at once.

As a result, the press were having a field day. Storms of controversy had erupted over the whole thing. It was the greatest issue the International Confederation had been called on to deal with since its founding, as over half the members of that body owed their allegiance and positions to Dumbledore.

The sad thing was, so many people had loved the old coot so much, and been so well conditioned by minor blow ups before all blowing over and revealing that he'd been right all along, that the old man's tremendous political credit might well be enough to carry him through this crisis, influence intact - and the fact that over half the members of the ICW owed their allegiance and positions to Dumbledore had nothing to do with that, of course.

No, something would be done. But it would be some time before they knew if anything real arose from this mess. Sadly, the one speed of government that could be counted on was 'slow', and the only more reliable speed was'slower'.

There were tempers alight on all sides of this. Some felt the Headmaster was being manipulated or maligned. The French were upset and clamoring for repayment for the insult to their nation, but many other countries loved the old fossil just as much as Britain did.

In any case, they'd be years chewing over this mess. It was not unusual, politicians could be years debating what style of table to sit at. When one side wanted the negotiations stalled, they went nowhere; and Albus still had many friends in high places who did not feel personally threatened by the latest news and revelations.

But then, you could blow both wings off an aircraft and it still took a while to hit the ground.

As bad as those provocations were, they'd be debating this for a while. That was inescapable as it was just the nature of government. And before they ever came to a decision what to do about him, there would be wheat tariffs in unrelated countries, and the maintenances of busses involved in the bill.

Because one thing government could generally be counted on was, granted a clear choice between two options, was somehow to come up with a third that had the disadvantages of both and the advantages of neither. And no sooner did one thing look like it was going to pass than EVERYBODY attached all their favorite pork to it.

At least, in light of the recent Prophet affair, the international community was being wary of stuff mailed out of England, particularly to their decision makers and important persons. So everything out of there was getting triple checked, and Dumbles' Confounding letter had gotten caught, fueling all sorts of suspicions - including the question, "How long has he been doing this?"

Almost overlooked in the rest of this scandal, an article printed in the latest issue of the Quibbler "Practical Defenses Against Mind Readers", pointed out that both Severus Snape and Albus Dumbledore were practiced mind readers who routinely scanned the thoughts of all those who met them. There was a substantial subculture forming that wouldn't meet Dumbledore in the eyes.

Also, another article in the Quibbler contained a transcript of that prophecy session between Dumbledore and Hermione/Trelawney, word for word, including his questions to her about controlling Harry (they'd viewed it in a pensieve to record), the article was entitled "Trelawney's Last Interview."

Both were creating substantial undercurrents of discontent while leaders who owed their lives and careers to Dumbledore sought to defend him up in higher reaches of power.

Sirius was not disturbed. You couldn't eat an elephant in one bite. Why should it be easy to destroy the political powers of Dumbledore, when he'd been building those up for more than a century? No one had more power than the old man. You'd probably get as far saying things against Hitler back in good old Nazi Germany. So many careers would go down with his that even those who knew he was guilty were defending him.

It was worse than getting Lucius Malfoy on trial would've been.

Sirius Black, no longer fugitive, smiled as he folded the paper and went back into his new cottage. Amelia's contact had been good to him, helping him get access to his finances almost as soon as he got exonerated. Hermione also had an uncle in France, which explained why she often went there during her summer holidays. But the man had been a font of useful information, helping the no-longer-fugitive Black find a property quickly. The man could hardly help Sirius enough once the escapee had mentioned that the sooner he could get a place prepared, the sooner his beloved niece could move out of England and transfer to a school in the south of France.

Together they'd found a struggling vineyard and having had enough cash he'd purchased the property straight away, without going through the silly hoops that banks and mortgage companies required. Whatever problems muggles had with houses were easily fixed by magic, so the paperwork was pointless.

In a few weeks, they'd have warding specialists visit. He'd already made the earliest possible appointment. And a French hospital had prescribed a regime of treatments and potions to correct the long term exposure to dementors and other general malnutrition and aftereffects of the horrors of Azkaban.

He already gotten a replacement wand, new clothing, and was beginning to feel like a new man. Amelia was even coming by sometime in the next few days to get his testimony about the whole affair, and he was thinking about giving her a candelit dinner at a good restaurant, just to see if he still had it.

No, for the first time in a long while, it was good to be Sirius Black.

I I I

Amelia Bones sat in her office feeling tremendously disturbed, facing the single most significant decision of her young life.

Promotions had come quickly to those in the auror corps who'd survived the dire days during the last war. She'd not been long out of Hogwarts before being rushed through an abbreviated auror training program and pushed out into service. So far as she could tell nothing of any significance had been skipped, cramming what was ordinarily a three year course into nine months. But that was contrasting feverishly intense proto-soldiers, already highly motivated to defend their families, to laid back peacetime cops.

Frankly, Amelia quietly suspected she'd gotten a better education, those nine months of intensive study with diamond-hard emotional drives, than her modern recruits got in their three years of snoring through boring lectures.

There was also small question as to why she'd become drawn back to thinking of the 'bad old days' of the fight against Voldemort.

Yesterday the head of the DMLE had most of her precious illusions shattered. To start with, there had been that fearsome Prophet expose, revealing all sorts of deviltry and shady business on the part of the wizarding world's most trusted figure. As if that hadn't been enough, mere minutes after she had finished reading her paper, Albus himself had come storming into the halls of the Ministry of Magic at the head of her own aurors and not-so-quietly taken control of the building at wand-point, proving in her mind the majority of the Prophet's statements to be true.

That had been reality shattering enough, but then she'd been personally obliviated by the Headmaster himself.

Her mind had been saved by a chance mishap, either good luck on her part or bad on the part of the Headmaster, she couldn't tell which. After giving him temporary command of her aurors, whereupon he instructed them to go out and commit war crimes, obliviating the entire magical population of this incident, Amelia had been saved by chancing to see the headline of one of those papers again, and being forced by the 'Must Read' compulsion to sit down and go through it all over again.

The shock of reading that a second time had enabled her to throw off the Headmaster's obliviation. The justice loving witch was frothing at the mouth with how Dumbles just retook control over the Ministry right in front of her! But by then her aurors were scattered all over Britain acting on his orders instead of hers. Direct action would be pointless, as due to the instructions he'd given them, they simply would've obliviated her all over again if they sensed she didn't support Albus. And he still maintained that control. He had not relinquished it yet.

Still, she wasn't the head of the DMLE for nothing. She had some brains in her head, and if direct action was out, indirect would do for now.

Amelia had made the switch from front-line auror to desk jockey admin type during the last war for a reason, and it wasn't that she was incompetent with a wand or feared the Death Eaters. No, it was because the line types needed support and back then they weren't getting it. Besides, she'd always had a gift for getting things done despite red tape.

She also wore a monocle with all the powers of Moody's magical eye not because she was paranoid, but because sometimes they really were out to get you. Besides, she felt, as the head of the DMLE, that she had more obligation than anybody to see the truth.

But she also knew that the admin types could either be your best friends or worst enemies. So she'd settled down to hamstring the Headmaster by any means available to her on that day of chaos. Among other things she saw to it that newspapers gathered by the Ministry were not destroyed, but rather collected and secreted away.

She'd been partway through plans for how to cripple the Headmaster, cutting away at his power base and influence (starting with getting her aurors to read those papers she'd saved the moment he released control of them) when the Wireless broadcast that interview with Snape.

Amelia had been thinking of a quiet campaign that would steadily undermine Dumbledore's power. Then the Wireless had to drop the bomb about him plotting to raise the last Dark Lord. The fact he was willing to do so just because he needed a distraction drove her into fury!

Countless good men and women had died in the last war, including most of Amelia's family and friends. Now Dumbledore was going to start the terror all over again just because he wanted to divert some attention off himself?

Once upon a time, she'd felt Voldemort was as bad as it could get. Now she realized that they already lived under a Dark Lord who was far worse, one who's power and callousness toward others shamed even the famous Dark Slytherin. And by the time she'd realized he was a threat, he was already in control of the magical world. He'd won. The victory all Dark Lords eventually sought was not only his, but had been for a long time.

That brought her back to the question. She'd woken up to the fact that a Dark Lord was in control of Magical Britain. Did she, or did she not, dare to do something about it? And, if so, what could she accomplish?

She had to admit to feeling completely outclassed and having no idea what to do. The man was virtually unstoppable. All ordinary routes were impossible to pursue in light of his popularity, influence and both personal and political power. Heck! Half the offices necessary to begin the process of pursuing a campaign against a Dark Lord were held by the man himself!Dumbledore was so entrenched in their government that she honestly didn't know if she could take him down him without destroying their world in the process.

Shaking herself mentally, Amelia looked over the report on her desk. The Ministry's wardstones getting stolen might truly be a blessing in disguise. If she could work this right, she'd hopefully make it impossible for the Supreme Mugwump to get power over those wards again.

It wasn't much, but it would be a start.

I I I

Hermione stroked a feather left behind by the Headmaster's bird. "Evidently Fawkes wouldn't mind being free. And he knows things about fires, so while it may seem random to us, he might have all sorts of resources for watching lots of fires, or knowing when and where an ashwinder would spawn."

Luna made an agreeing noise in the back of her throat. "Poor Fawkes. He probably doesn't like being enslaved to Dumbledore any more than any human would. Probably the experience is much harder for a phoenix as they are light creatures and Dumbles is anything but. I wonder how long he's been looking for opportunities to get free."

Harry shrugged. "Fawkes would have to obey his orders so long as he stays bound. But I find it unlikely in the extreme that Albus specifically ordered him not to deliver any ashwinders to people."

Hermione nodded, then continued thoughtfully. "I'd guess Dumbledore never really saw Fawkes as more than a bird - a symbol, not an intelligent, active being of his own. He would've given him what he thought were a complete set of instructions, not thinking about him trying to find ways around those."

Luna nodded agreeably. "That is part of what makes the fey notorious- we can be forced to make certain actions, but we retain our free wills, so will constantly try to pervert the instructions we are given. I'd imagine Fawkes has an even stronger will than we do."

Harry stopped hissing out instructions to the ashwinder and stood up."Well, the ritual to free Fawkes takes a full two weeks. Fortunately we have enough time before the Fall Equinox. We have enough time plus a little, but it still serves us best to get started right away."

"Right," they all confirmed.

I I I

The new day after the Prophet Disaster (as it was almost universally called) was almost as hectic as the previous, as Albus had to send out his already-controlled forces of aurors and obliviators to contain damage once again, due this time to the broadcast the previous night over the Wizarding Wireless Network revealing him plotting like a functioning Dark Lord.

Openly planning to return Voldemort as a distraction upset quite a few souls.

The reaction wasn't as extreme as the paper's had been, after all it lacked the same compulsions to believe it, and many had felt it to be ajoke (and one in bad taste at that). But it had also enjoyed more time to fester before the Headmaster learned about it. So it was much harder to effectively erase, as many families had already left Britain or taken other precautions.

Still, this was to be their 'Normal Day', and the trio were determined to spend at least some parts of it trying out new parts of their routines. They woke up very early that morning on the shore of the lake after a vigorous hour long workout including laps around the lake (both swimming and running), calisthenics and aerobic exercises.

It was not expertly planned, but it was enthusiastically executed.

Harry also cast spells meant for helping people recall their dreams, so they could each remember those workouts so they'd know how and where they needed to modify them to improve. In truth, they needed so much and knew so little that wasn't much help. It only let them recall more pain.

Having slept through their first workout, they'd expected to wake up sore and tired. What they did not expect was just how sore and tired. Having slept through the experience it was not monitored by the conscious mind, which holds back when it can, but the subconscious mind, which obeys fewer limits. As a direct result their bodies had been running closer to full out, and they were not physically ready for anything like that.

But there Harry's nutritional regime came into play. Back when he'd first stopped by the Ministry building to register complaints about the Dursleys, the Healers had put him on stuff for correcting the damage. By now taking them was automatic for the boy, and he noticed when he did the pain of sore muscles immediately went down.

Having compassion on the girls, he immediately shared with them, reducing their pain to something manageable. Healing potions prepared ahead of time for healing muscle tissue damage and bruising and things corrected most of the rest, leaving them a little wobbly but overall alright.

They'd already noticed Harry's nutritional potions and things for healing the long-term neglect and abuse had finally started filling out and building muscles up on his human form. Now they elected to try it as supplements for their physical workouts. If it built up muscles without work, why not with?

Besides, anything to make the pain more manageable had to be considered.

So, while they woke up sore, within a short while they were not half so sore as they deserved to be, and they immediately resolved to have more potions from his nutritional regime handy every morning.

Bellatrix had brought out of the LeStrange vaults enough suits of living silver armor for the group to wear, not only the trio but herself as well. However, Luna had taken a chance to stop in on the Darling (formerly Malfoy)vaults to pick up a set she liked better, one made by a better smith than the others. The suit Bella brought her they could give to Trelawney.

All of these would be going through the fire protection ritual shortly, as soon as they had a chance to run it again.

Currently the Goblet of Fire with the trio of enhanced dragons breathing on it was tied up in the ritual to free Fawkes. Luckily, like Harry had said, they had enough time to do that and still get in one or two more of the fire protection rituals before they lost the Summer Solstice and the magical clearing reset to holding on to the mystic properties of the Fall Equinox.

Harry had also taken an opportunity to do a bit of magical creature research.

Ashwinders lived under an hour. They were ash grey snakes spawned by fires that had burned out of control, and in their few moments of life they sought out dark corners in which to lay their brilliant red eggs -eggs that gave off such intense heat that within minutes they inevitably started fires. Wizards were cautioned that if they saw the trail of an ashwinder coming out of a fire to track it down and find the nest so they could freeze the eggs, which were valuable ingredients in love potions, and would otherwise destroy the building.

So, Harry's question was: if those snakes spawned randomly from fires why did they lay eggs? You would think that a creature magically created more or less out of thin air would not feel a need to reproduce itself as its one driving urge during those few, short moments of life.

But they did.

The only thing ashwinders ever did during their perilously short lives was seek out a dark place to nest and lay their eggs there. And it was more than just a need to create fires. There were plenty of ways to burn things, you needn't go through all the effort of forming powerful magic eggs to do it. You could breathe flame, or have a hot hide, or use any number of methods. Fire was easy to create. Also, further evidence on this point, those few times that a wizard got careless and didn't notice the nest in time, as the house was burning down there weren't any newborn ashwinders slithering out.

So Harry wanted to find out why they laid eggs, and to do that he first tried to ask, but ashwinders weren't very bright. They didn't know. They just felt this driving urge. So he determined to hatch some. It was no trouble at all to get the ashwinder they had to produce a set of eggs. Provide a dark nest and there you go, instant set of brilliant, glowing red ashwinder eggs.

Figuring they were hot, so they wanted to be hot (and ones frozen for use in love potions could be kept on a shelf forever waiting to be used and never did anything) he tossed some in a kiln.

Actually, he had six, so two got tossed inside of a kiln, two got tossed inside of the Goblet of Fire (which promptly burned them up, so he figured that was too hot - and it was running at full power 'brilliant blazing ruby glowing from within and sheathed in flame from without' at the moment)and two he gave to Trelawney to keep in a campfire.

These last two were sort of a dual experiment. He needed to know if there was anything special about a wood fueled fire to the eggs, and Trelawney had plenty of detritus composed of other people's wood she wanted to burn up to get her clearing safe and cleaner. But also she was going to use their nest as a cooking fire, and he wanted to know if that affected her potions.

He didn't know if anything would come of this, but he figured he'd never know if someone didn't try an experiment and see.

I I I

Dumbledore had had very little time lately to play up the 'caring Headmaster'persona, but there were certain things you could not neglect overlong before they spawned crises of their own. One of them was keeping up an image, and without the portraits of previous headmasters and headmistresses to act as his drama coaches, maintenance of his kindly grandfather air was something he dared not neglect, as he doubted he was currently able to perform proper repairs should he, in some way, damage it.

Besides, it was good policy to be seen around, doing the 'meet and greet'of faculty and students on any day before making a grand announcement, and the new security protocols would not be a popular change.

Ah, well. Losing their precious freedoms for the Greater Good was something they ought to get used to.

Also, putting image entirely aside for the time being, he needed to know if any of the obliviates performed recently had begun slipping. With luck as bad as his had been, he could not trust all the aurors to have done a precise job in every case. So it would be wise to check.

As part of his rounds around the school, Dumbledore stopped by the Hospital Wing, seeing all the beds filled. Regrettably, the needed steps to procure the return of his students had resulted in any number of injuries, and within the halls were loads of broken people, including Alicia Spinnet and Katie Bell. Oliver Wood had escaped during the fighting.

He would have to do something about that. He'd made a friendly wager with Severus that Gryffindor would win the Quidditch Cup this year, and they could not do so if cut down by nearly half a team.

He would release some of his stores of phoenix tears to Poppy to get those, and perhaps a few other, students back on their feet again quickly. Also the mandrakes he'd special ordered from Tibet and China would be arriving soon, and he had sent for a generous enough quantity that he could release some for the making of Restorative Draughts for students. That would take care of the worst of the damage, though he would have to decide what to do about replacing Oliver Wood. The position of Keeper was something he'd promised to Ronald Weasley in exchange for services rendered. But that was planned for later, when he'd arranged for bets on that team to lose.

Something would have to be done in the interim. He would not be the one who had to polyjuice into a girl and hang out at the red light district of Knockturn, turning all money made over to the victor. He'd arranged that wager to take Severus down a peg, prove to him that he was not as great as he sometimes felt, not to demean himself.

Besides, Albus didn't have the time. Things with this Colonel were moving too rapidly to take time out for fun. He would simply have to arrange abetter Keeper for the Gryffindor Quidditch team, one who could be trusted to not be there in a year or two when he needed the lions to lose.

Pondering over this, and who to choose, Dumbledore made his way to the Great Hall, well before the food was to be served, so he could be seen at breakfast as the students started to trickle in.

Unbeknownst to the Headmaster (who'd had his mind busy on other things)one of the many problems he'd been overlooking as he dealt with more urgent priorities was the House Elf population of the castle had taken not one but two substantial hits lately. The first came when Harry, holder of several of the Founders Artifacts, had hired away roughly half his help to serve on his own projects. The second great hit was yesterday, when he'd sent them out to go collect all of the Daily Prophet papers they could, and most of the little elves had run into hastily erected wards, never to return.

The sum total of this was the previously plentiful to overflowing Hogwarts staff of House Elves had been diminished to the point where it was no longer able to service the basic needs of the castle. A tremendous stroke of bad luck, but something they had to deal with.

Where once they'd had over four hundred, now they had fourteen elves.

Down in the kitchens there simply were not enough elves to prepare the food. Even stripping the cleaning staff to the bone and neglecting all but the most mandatory spying roles, they did not have enough elves to get even half the customary amount of food prepared; even if they cut out all of the frivolity and made only the simplest and easiest to prepare dishes.

While that food was previously prepared in generous portions (the elves got to eat the leftovers), they still could not manage to feed more than three quarters of the students on the newly reduced amount of cooking, to say nothing of the purebloods who ordered customary dishes and home recipes which were hard to prepare in the best of times, or of vacuums like Ron Weasley. Feeding those would cause many other students to go hungry(to say nothing of leaving no food left over for the elves themselves to eat).

The crisis had to be dealt with, and the Headmaster was busy enough to have been neglecting their calls for direction. So, having been forbidden to speak to McGonagall about certain things, the miserable elves were left to make do as best they knew how.

There were several unalterable priorities to a Hogwarts House Elf, and one of those was that the Students Must Be Fed! So, since the elves themselves were too few to do all of the cooking, they altered their shopping priorities for the morning and picked up some already prepared food.

No one had ever put hamburgers or pizza on the 'approved' list, and certainly not Chinese take out. So the little elves did what they could and found a place selling what seemed a traditional and long approved dish: Fried Chicken.

And that was why the Headmaster shrieked like a little girl when, as the first few faculty and students of the day appeared and breakfast got served, he beheld a bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken sitting at every place.

"Don't! It will kill us all!" he shrieked as McGonagall reached for a piece.

Between the time it took to reassure him (and test the food - which was all perfectly acceptable, and the gravy very tasty), breakfast had gone into full swing. The hall was full, and it was time for the mail to arrive.

Albus' eyes grew round with shocked horror as he beheld the tide of red envelopes descending on the Head Table - specifically, him.

One thing Dumbledore had neglected in all his cleanup efforts, something that had plain slipped his mind.

The Howlers.

Thousands of them, worse that practically each and every one wanted to shout out words and phrases he'd rather people not know. The people around him had forgotten the events those missives wanted to shout. The SENDERS of those messages had forgotten them, but the howlers had been in transit and unaffected by the great purge.

Yet he couldn't let people overhear them. Shout a secret out loud in public and it was no longer a secret.

The Headmaster ran shrieking to his office, chased by flocks of hundreds or even thousands of red letters, already forming into mouths to yell angry phrases disclosing all sorts of what should have been well kept secrets.

His staff stared curiously after him.

As he barricaded himself in his tower, Dumbledore began cursing. He had to do something about this luck. With his luck this bad his brother might, next wizengamot session, bring around a few goats painted up with makeup and dresses and demand that they get to vote.

I I I

Author's Notes:

It has been pointed out, correctly, that I spend too much time initiating events and too little describing the aftereffects and backlashes. This chapter makes some attempt to rectify that situation.

This next really belongs to a previous chapter, but, hey, I'll say it here.

At first I was skeptical about the whole "Dumbledore cast the Fidelius over the Potters home" deal. But then I did some research.

It is a canon fact that Dumbledore cast a charm to protect the Potter home. Now the Fidelius was the only charm ever mentioned as having been cast over that home; also the only 'charm' EVER placed on properties (everything else put on homes is called a ward), so going by a 'strictly canon' viewpoint, only one charm was cast: the Fidelius - and Albus Dumbledore cast it.

Anything else requires us to make up something that doesn't appear in the books.

But whether or not it was the Fidelius Charm does not matter, he knew who the secret keeper was. Either he cast the charm, in which case he had to know whom to put the secret into, or he had to learn the location (which he demonstrably knew) from the secret keeper. He could not have learned the secret of its location otherwise. The only way to know is to be told by the secret keeper.

So Albus Dumbledore knew that Sirius Black could not have betrayed the Potters. Yet he sent him to rot in jail anyway.

And regarding Albus 'Identify people by faint magical signatures' Dumbledore learning the location from a note: wizards don't type. With the exception of major publications like books and newspapers, everything is handwritten; and a note written by anything other than the actual Secret Keeper, say like a magic quill, would probably not count as being 'told by the keeper'. He could tell the quill, but the quill then telling you doesn't count as him telling you.

So there is no such thing as anonymous notes. Not like we are used to.

Dumbledore's read the handwriting of all the magical people he cares to, and HE'S actually given enough brains to recognize people by faint clues such as handwriting (or magical signatures - like in a magically significant note).

So, even given a note, he'd know who it was, especially given that he works closely with these people and cares to know more about them. Besides, handwriting analysis exists for a reason: different people have different writing styles based on their background and personality. And you can't tell me that a confident and collected man raised in an aristocratic household could have handwriting mistaken for a pathetic sycophant who wasn't. Their handwriting would not only be different, but dramatically so.

Harry could miss such clues. Dumbledore wouldn't. So, regardless of whether he's told by note or in person, he would know who it was who held the secret. And 'magically forging' the handwriting would almost certainly destroy the value of the note, just as cutting apart and pasting together the magnetic code bar on the back of a credit card would. Same deal here. The magic requires that HE tell you. Distorting or disguising who 'he'is fights against the operative principle at work here, as it was described. If I were to mess around with the order of the little numbers on one of my security code keys to 'change their style' it wouldn't unlock anything anymore.

You don't hide information from Dumbles when he wants to know. Sorry. And he's always been obsessive about anything to do with that prophecy. Even with two possible children, he would've learned all he could about BOTH!

And as for 'put the secret first in this person, then in that one' we are given no indication in the books that such a switch is possible AFTER the spell is cast! In fact, the magical world regards who has the secret as unalterable.

Likewise, the 'spellcaster forgets all about the spell after it was cast' is not reflected in the books. Only the secret itself is hidden, not anything else.
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