Much to his displeasure, Harry is thrown back through time into his six year old body. As a result, Harry decides to contort the timeline, purely for his own amusement.
Throughout his life, Albus Dumbledore had weathered many storms where his cunning had been stretched what he perceived to the absolute limits. The battle with Gridelwald that he was famous took its toll on Dumbledore for years both physically and mentally yet Dumbledore managed to recover. The thing was that Albus Dumbledore was not getting any younger and he felt the effects of age more with each passing year. The problem was that the name Dumbledore commanded strength in the Wizarding World and the hive mind like mentality of most in this world mandated that they needed a leader who was powerful enough to command courage to rally against any dark wizard.
Dumbledore had hoped to find a successor to his position of leader of the light in young Harry Potter. The defeat of Lord Voldemort would be the perfect catalyst for Harry Potter to grow into the force that would inevitably rally all against the forces of darkness. Sending Harry Potter to the Dursleys had the intention of keeping the boy grounded, down to earth, and not be blinded by his fame. In his wildest dreams, Dumbledore could never imagine that Petunia Dursley would allow her venom towards her sister to extend to her own nephew and thus stand back while Vernon Dursley took unfortunate liberties with the boy. It was sad when an adult found a need to abuse a child, it really showed weakness in the adult, but yet Dumbledore regretted few things in his life than the fact that he didn’t keep a closer eye on the Dursley residence. Harry had to have remained there to be protected but now it was too late. Petunia Dursley was without a doubt receiving the Dementor’s Kiss as Dumbledore sat here. Deep down, Dumbledore knew she deserved the kiss.
“The end,” replied Dumbledore calmly, more to himself than to the other teachers in the staff room as he spoke. “The end of a glorious life of public service, ending in disgrace, but alas all things must come to an end.”
“Now, Albus, they did say you could remain on as the Headmaster of Hogwarts,” said Minerva McGonagall.
“No, I cannot in any good conscious stay in a position of power,” said Dumbledore. “Especially when hundreds of children are under my charge and I do not wish to fail them, like I had done with young Harry. I fear that my views of life are outdated. It is time to step back and regroup. Effective tomorrow morning I shall resign as Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. “
“No!” replied several teachers in the staff room.
“Yes, it is to be done, the details of the trial will be in the Daily Prophet soon enough,” answered Dumbledore sadly. “Reporters have a strange tendency to focus on the negative aspects, sometimes magnifying them to the greatest degree. Even I am not immune to this public prosecution, as the quill of Rita Skeeter has proven in the past. It is best to step out of public view, to not be branded as the wizard who held onto his influence long after he was capable of making acceptable decisions.”
“Where will you go from here, Albus?” asked Professor Flitwick.
“One could never tell what path in life they are set up, Filius,” responded Dumbledore. “Tomorrow I will give my resignation speech to the children of Hogwarts and then I will throw myself at the mercy, should there be any, of the goblins. From there, I could only guess.”
Without another word, Dumbledore stood up and walked out of the staffroom. The Headmaster had never turned back to look at the teachers, many he had worked with for decades and some that he had taught Transfiguration when they were students what seemed like a lifetime ago.
Hermione looked very frustrated as Harry had sat in the chair opposite her, attempting to teach her Occlumency. As Harry had expected, it was going rather slowly, as it was an art that most overage witches and wizards could barely grasp. It took three years for Harry to learn it properly, but Harry had a feeling it would have taken a much shorter amount of time had it not been for Snape. Still, Harry had learned the art eventually and had become rather proficient with the skill of protecting his mind from enemies, as Severus Snape had found out the hard way a while back.
“That was good Hermione, you nearly cast me out this time,” said Harry, breaking the silence. The truth was that Harry was holding back quite a bit in his attempts to view Hermione’s thoughts, to give her a chance to build up her resistance. As she got better, Harry would fight her attempts to block him a little bit more, until she had master Occlumency.
“I don’t know what I’m doing wrong!” exclaimed Hermione in a frustrated voice. “I did everything you told me to, but you’re still getting in my head.”
“Yes, just keep practicing, remember, you need to distract me with unimportant memories so you have enough time to keep me out of your mind,” explained Harry.
“I know, I keep trying!” said Hermione who was hysterical. “I hate this! Why can’t I do it right?”
“Hermione most adult witches and wizards have trouble learning this art and you are doing better than anyone could expect for someone your age,” replied Harry.
“You can do it,” said Hermione as she crossed her arms and stuck her lip out in a pouty, frustrated expression.
“Yes, I can,” answered Harry with a slow nod of his head.
“And I have to learn it to know why,” grumbled Hermione before muttering something that sounded vaguely like “unfair” under her breath.
“I think that’s enough, we need to be heading to school in about a half of an hour and learning Occlumency does make one a bit light headed,” said Harry.
“Just one more time, please,” pleaded Hermione.
“After we get our homework done, after school, we can practice some more But right now, you need to be at your best after all, you don’t want to give any less than your full attention to your most favorite teacher ever, Professor Remington Q. Gillworth, the Third, Esquire,” said Harry and that particular notion caused Hermione to stick her tongue out in disgust.
The day of school had been a normal day for Harry and Hermione, but when the two children had arrived at Hermione’s house, Remus was there with a copy of the Daily Prophet.
“What happened now?” asked Harry as he took the copy of the Daily Prophet and unfolded it, reading the headline on the front cover. Hermione looked like she wanted to stick around to see what this about but her mother had grabbed her by the hand and led her back inside.
“Hermione, come inside, I’m sure he’ll be inside in a minute,” muttered Marie to her daughter as Harry read the article with a bit of amusement.
Embarrassed by Failure: Dumbledore Resigns from position of Hogwarts Headmaster:
By Rita Skeeter
At the trial just two days ago, Albus Dumbledore was finally held accountable by his actions regarding Harry Potter. Through many damning pieces of evidence (full details on page five), Dumbledore was humbled before the full Wizengamot court. The only prestigious position that remained for the once respected wizard was his position as the Headmaster of Hogwarts, which in this reporter’s humble opinion was a questionable decision on the part of the Wizengamot. Dumbledore had already put one child in danger thanks to his despicable actions and questionable judgment, so what kind of parent would allow their child to attend a school run by such a man?
In the end, it appears that Dumbledore himself had foreseen a backlash and as a result announced his resignation at breakfast this morning. This decision was greeted by mixed reactions from all. Some felt that Dumbledore should have resigned years ago, while others were saddened to see the ancient wizard go. So where does Albus Dumbledore go from here? Are his attempts to meddle with the life of Harry Potter, the Boy-Who-Lived over? Legally that might be the case (again, see page five for full details), but as we know, Albus Dumbledore has found ways to justify many actions that were above the law. Many sources state that there are many skeletons in the Dumbledore closet that have been concealed and this reporter wonders exactly what tales would Albus Dumbledore work so hard to hide. Perhaps in time, that would be discovered.
In the meantime, current deputy Headmistress Minerva McGonagall will fill the role as Head of Hogwarts temporarily until the Board of Governors can find a suitable replacement for Albus Dumbledore. Hopefully this new Headmaster or Headmistress will not make the same mistakes that Albus Dumbledore did during his time at Hogwarts.
Harry lowered the paper.
“So Dumbledore willingly resigned from Hogwarts, that’s very interesting,” remarked Harry. “I wonder if there is more to this than meets the eye.”
“I don’t know Harry, it’s almost like Dumbledore admitted that he made a mistake,” said Remus shaking his head.
“Well there has to be a first time for everything, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he put this down to, hang on let me get my eye twinkle ready, an old man’s mistakes,” answered Harry. “I really don’t think this is over yet. Dumbledore still may have a trick or two up his sleeve yet. I’m not about to let my guard down.
“Another thing Harry, real quick, that’s not the only thing of interest in this paper, it seems Rita Skeeter’s been busy lately,” added Remus, as he grabbed the paper, before he flipped inside the cage.
Ministry Blunders Again: Black Never Received a Trial:
By Rita Skeeter:
During the now infamous Dumbledore trial, very interesting revelations came to light. It appears that receiving a fair and just trial, no matter what the crime, is not a theory that those who run the Ministry actively subscribe to. It was revealed that notorious mass murder Sirius Black had never received his day in court. Black was alleged to have murdered twelve Muggles and one wizard with one curse. Despite that horrific crime, one would assume that Black would at least have his day in court, to at the very least prove that there was no shadow of a doubt that he was guilty of his crimes. That assumption would be faulty to put it mildly, as the revelation did come to light that Sirius Black never received his crime. Muggle Mafia Boss, Allan Michael Barone (yes, the same Barone that had kidnapped The Boy-Who-Lived) has claimed to represent the best interests of Sirius Black. Using his vast resources to delve deep into the Ministry records, Barone discovered that Black was thrown into Azkaban without a trial. This disturbing claim was made on the heels of the incarceration of Lucius Malfoy. Malfoy had previously claimed he was under the Imperius Curse, but was arrested for assaulting a minor with an Unforgivable curse. Oddly enough, in this tangled web, I feel it would be prudent to remind you that Harry Potter was the minor in question as Lucius Malfoy decided to use his many connections to adopt the Boy-Who-Lived, no doubt for his own gain.
So, what becomes of Black now? Black is currently out of Azkaban, having escaped with several other alleged Death Eaters. The question remains, if Black never received a trial, exactly how many more inside the walls of Azkaban were thrown in without their day in court.
Bartemius Crouch, who made the decision to put Black in Azkaban, could not be reached for comment.
Harry folded the paper and looked into the air.
“The Ministry’s hand will have to be forced now to give Sirius a fair trial,” said Remus after a moment’s pause.
“Ideally yes, but I know all too well how the Ministry works,” remarked Harry. “They sweep their mistakes under the rug as quickly as they can. If and when Sirius gets his trial, it might be a good idea to keep a close eye out for Dementors. I wouldn’t put it past the Ministry to have the Dementors give Sirius the Dementor’s Kiss and pass it off as an accident.”
Time had passed rather quickly without much events as fall turned into winter and time slowly faded into the spring. The mob war with Boss Zabini continued but it was mostly a lot of strategic planning and very few causalities.
Harry had one eye on the Muggle World, but the other eye was on the Wizarding World, on several potentially profitable businesses for investment. Harry planned on making his move once his Muggle operations were stable. The time between his grandfather’s death and Harry taking control was plagued with turmoil, weakening the actual stability of the organization a bit. Thankfully with some help, mostly from Sirius, Remus, and Antonio, but others as well, Harry managed to get everything mostly running. As well as snatching a few key businesses from out from underneath the nose of Boss Zabini, placing himself right in the middle of Zabini dominated areas of Great Britain in several instances. It was a rather bold move on Harry’s part, but one that he felt it would be one to cement his status as someone who was not willing to be pushed around. He had a strong feeling that Zabini would not let these actions go on for too long, but Harry had a few contingency plans to deal with the situation as the time came.
Hermione’s Occulmency training was going as well as could be expected for someone her age. Harry had to constantly remind Hermione that progress would be slow but that just drove Hermione to want to work harder and when she didn’t succeed, it frustrated her to no end. There was a bit of improvement, but Harry was resigned to the fact that it would take time to teach Hermione this rather difficult art. If nothing else, Hermione’s enthusiasm to learn tended to be both a blessing and a curse at different periods of time.
The Ministry of Magic seemed to be going out of their way not to acknowledge the fiasco involving Sirius not receiving a trial. In fact, Harry had not heard any word about the Ministry even entertaining the notion of giving Sirius his rightful trial. After the initial article, Rita had written a few more articles condemning the Ministry officials for their actions, but after a while the articles had stopped. Harry had suspected that Rita had been put on a leash by the Ministry and was forced to find new topics to expose to the masses. No doubt by now, the Wizarding World would have found new things to become indignant about and the controversy swept itself under the rug. After figuratively neutering Albus Dumbledore’s influence, Harry had focused on matters in his mafia organization, as he made plans to make it into an empire in the Muggle World before expanding into the Wizarding World, a rather necessary expansion to combat Voldemort on the chance that the Dark Lord would return to a full body. Now, with most of his Muggle operations rather stable, Harry decided that he might have to force the issue regarding Sirius and receiving his trial.
Those thoughts echoed through Harry’s mind as he waited outside the school in the early part of April, as the spring breeze whipped into his face. Harry stood right beside a tree as Hermione sat underneath the tree, reading a book just a short while before school started.
“Here comes Evelyn,” muttered Harry under his breath, as she saw the snobbish girl walk towards both himself and Hermione. “You really think she would learn after you knocked her into the mud with that accidental banishing charm.”
“Well, if it isn’t a nerd gathering,” remarked Evelyn in snide voice. “Really, those books aren’t going to get you any more friends.”
“Really,” replied Harry calmly. “And I suppose you made loads of friends with your oh so charming and loveable personality.”
“Yeah, well you’re just jealous,” said Evelyn. “I have friends that don’t have bushy hair and teeth the size of piano keys.”
“Would you like to go for a swim in the mud again?” asked Hermione coolly which caused Evelyn to shriek in horror before leaping back.
“Ick, disgusting, you’re gross and a nerd, that’s why no one likes you, dorkface,” said Evelyn with a sneer.
“Dorkface?” asked Hermione before shaking her head and adding in a sarcastic tone of voice. “Wow that was so funny, I forgot to laugh”
“I’m going to go with all my friends and play while you two get married to books or something, you bushy haired nerd,” announced Evelyn.
“Yeah, you go do that but remember, popularity is fleeting,” remarked Harry cynically. “Just wait until your uncle is no longer the teacher. Then you’re get a dose of the real world.”
“You’re just jealous, I’ll be rich and famous and popular and stuff and you’ll be just nothing,” answered Evelyn. “I mean, it’s not like that icky lighting bolt thingy on your forehead is going to give you any fame.”
Loud hysterical laugh erupted from behind Evelyn, causing the young girl to whip around to see Blaise Zabini with her head reared backwards laughing madly with tears rolling down her cheeks from laughing so hard.
“See, even she agrees with me,” replied Evelyn.
“No, I don’t, but I suppose thinking is not what you do,” remarked Blaise in a cold cynical voice, as she started right at Evelyn with her blue eyes. “Now, Simmons, be a good little girl and go run along and play dress up or dolls or something and leave my friends alone.”
Evelyn stomped off angrily to rejoin her friends but she didn’t do much more than that, as she looked a bit intimidated by Blaise.
“Didn’t know, we were friends, Zabini,” replied Hermione calmly.
“Compared to those other dunderheads, you are, Mione,” answered Blaise.
“I THOUGHT I TOLD YOU NOT TO CALL ME THAT, ZABINI!” yelled Hermione angrily, which caused even Harry to cringe. Even during the old timeline, Hermione absolutely hated to be called “Mione” and that particular quirk started at a young age.
“Damn it girl, don’t shout so loud,” hissed a voice from within a patch of nearby grass and Harry turned around to see a snake flickering out of the grass. Blaise’s attention seemed to be attracted as well.
“Cool, a snake,” said Blaise as she peered into the grass. “Wonder if we can set it on Simmons.”
“I wouldn’t take a bite out of that girl even if she was the last piece of meat on earth,” hissed the snake in an irritable tone. “My fangs have standards.”
Harry laughed at that.
“You understood what that snake said, didn’t you?” asked Hermione, as she peered over the book.
“Harry, come here a minute, I need to tell you something away from the M-U-G-G-L-E,” interjected Blaise in a slightly frantic voice.
“Jeez, it must be nice to be able to spell,” replied Hermione in a sarcastic voice. “Whatever you can say in front of Harry, I think you can say in front of me.”
“Besides, she’s a muggleborns witch anyway,” muttered Harry softly.
“I could hear you, you know,” replied Hermione with a frown.
“Okay, you’re a Parseltongue, as in you can talk to snakes” said Blaise taking a deep breath. “For the most witches and wizards, that’s bad. Really bad.”
“It’s just another language,” stated Harry with a shrug of his shoulder.
“Yes,” remarked Blaise. “It’s just that a lot of bad wizards speak it.”
“Well, that doesn’t mean anything, as if you spoke the language, you wouldn’t run your mouth about being able to speak it, at the risk of being declared bad,” said Harry.
“I agree, I actually think it’s cool, but if I was you, don’t tell anyone else about it,” said Blaise. “People might take it the wrong way.”
“Humans act stupid when they don’t form their own opinions,” hissed the snake. “Speaking a language is not evil, but exploiting my kind for the wrong purposes is.”
“Agreed,” remarked Harry in Parseltongue, which neither of the girls understood.
“We better get going,” said Hermione suddenly, as she looked at her watch and saw many of the other students. “Class starts in a little bit.”
“Take me with you,” demanded the snake to Harry. “It’s so dreadfully dull out here, no others of my kind around for miles.”
“Wait a minute, you want me to take me with you,” said Harry in a skeptical voice. “I don’t know…”
“I can sense you are a great wizard and all great wizards require a familiar,” answered the snake. “As a symbol of respect and as proof to your enemies of your power.”
“Harry,” said Hermione in a bit more forceful voice.
“Well, what if I don’t want to be different?” suggested Harry coolly before shaking his head as Hermione frantically tugged on his sleeve. “Fine, if you insist, but only if you promise not to draw attention to yourself.”
“I will only draw as much attention as it is necessary for my kind, which really isn’t too much at all,” informed the snake. “I do prefer to remain alive after all.”
“Come forth, and you will require a name,” said Harry in an afterthought as Harry bent down to allow the snake to slither around his right arm before he followed Hermione, who was starting to walk towards the school.
“Why?” questioned the snake.
“Because, I don’t want to have to refer to you as, the snake,” answered Harry shaking his head. “It would get a bit repetitive after a while.”
“Quite,” agreed the snake.
“Since I’m a mob boss, it’s fitting that I should name my familiar something…well fitting,” hissed Harry in Parseltongue, so no one could overhear him. “So, you will now be referred to as Vinny.”
“You call me Billy-Bob-Joe-Bob-Ray-Bob-Fred-Billy-Bob-Ralph, for all I care, as long as it leads to a more interesting life than what I had before,” answered the snake as Harry and Hermione walked into the school.
“I’m almost tempted to change your name to that, just so I can declare that something has a longer name that Professor Remington Q. Gillworth the Third, Esquire,” replied Harry. “However, for simplicity’s sake and the fact I don’t want to lose my voice by just saying your name, we’ll stick with Vinny.”
Harry turned to Hermione who stood in the hallway.
“You’re really going to bring that snake into class, aren’t you?” asked Hermione.
“Yep,” responded Harry.
“Gillworth isn’t going to like that if he finds out, you know,” said Hermione.
“I know,” answered Harry with a mischievous smile and Hermione was struggling very hard not to break out into mad giggles as well at the thought of Professor Remington Q. Gillworth the Third, Esquire’s reaction if he had found a real life snake in his classroom.
Around this time in a backwoods area, Crabbe and Goyle continued their usual misadventures. The dynamic duo, after these many months, still hadn’t collected all the items that their master, the Dark Lord had told them to in a period of time that was going on six months.
“Dear lad, perhaps entering that troll den during mating season was a blooming disaster,” said Goyle as he bent over, in slight pain and walked bowl legged across the woods. “Especially when those brutes mistook me for a female troll and well…you saw what happened as you stood their and watched Crabbe.”
Crabbe stood their, blank look etched upon his face as he stared at Goyle.
“Damn it man, we need to come forth, the Dark Lord is counting on us to get these pivotal items, the entire fate of his campaign rests on our shoulders,” continued Goyle. “So let us press on bravely among our…”
A large explosion echoed throughout the woods. Goyle jumped backwards and pulled out his wand, holding it stiffly in front of him.
“I say, who goes there!” demanded Goyle. “I warn you, I am one of the most valued followers of the Dark Lord and a master of the dark arts.”
As Crabbed rolled his eyes, out of the fog walked a black midget wearing a groovy mullet and pornstache, dressed in what looked like Muggle army fatigues, armed with a crossbow in one hand and a wand in one hand.
“By jove, Crabbe, I do say if that’s not a Leprechaun!” shouted Goyle in a jovial voice as he pointed at the midget. “Maybe he can point us in the right direction to these items.
“G’day, mate,” said the midget, speaking in a very prominent Australian accent, addressing Crabbe. “The name’s Schwartz, Killer Schwartz, the most prominent troll hunter in the world and I hear word that trolls are in the area.”
“I say my good sir, could you point us to the direction of a place where we can get milk, eggs, and bread?” inquired Goyle but a razor sharp arrow flew through the air, nearly parting Goyle’s hair. “I beg your pardon, but I do say, what is the meaning of this.”
“Enough small talk, troll,” said Schwartz as he pointed his wand at Goyle. “I’m going to put you down and sell you to the Magical Zoo, beast.”
“You fool, you think I’m a troll, do you even know what a troll looks like?” demanded Goyle.
“No, but I do know what it smells like and you have troll smell all over you, so therefore all logic indicates that you are in fact a troll,” informed Schwartz. “Don’t be bushwhacking my intelligence, mate.”
“I warned you, Leprechaun, the Dark Lord himself taught me some of the most dangerous spells in the world,” said Goyle as he waved his wand in a threatening manner.
“I don’t care if your mama taught you how to square dance, you will not be escaping the wrath of Killer Schwartz, Bubba,” said Schwartz.
Goyle raised his wand but Schwartz was quicker on the draw, with Goyle’s wand flying out of his hand and another explosion sent him backwards into a tree. With another flick of his wrist, Schwartz had bound Goyle up in a magical net.
“Crabbe, you blooming bubbling dunderhead, do something and free me!” responded Goyle, but Crabbe responded with a blank look on his face, his eyes crossed and drool flowing from his mouth.
“I’m rather disappointed, I thought one so smelly would put up more of a fight,” muttered Schwartz shaking his head before addressing Crabbe. “Don’t worry, mate, this fool won’t be getting all up in your area any more.”
Without a word, Schwartz took the trapped Goyle and disapparated, leaving Crabbe all alone. Crabbe stood their for a few minutes and when he was sure the coast was clear, he pumped up his fist in triumph before going forth to purchase the items the Dark Lord required from a grocery store, just as he had been suggesting to Goyle for months on end.
Back at Harry and Hermione’s school, Gillworth paced back and forth with a look on his face, with a disgusted look on his face.
“A certain revelation hit me, Professor Remington Q. Gillworth, the Third, Esquire, this morning,” said Gillworth “The fact remains that very few of you will ever amount to anything. I have been placed with the unfortunate responsibility of teaching ugly children, stupid children, and stupid ugly children, for very little pay I might add.”
Gillworth reached over to his desk and pulled out a stack of papers.
“The results of your last spelling examination proved to be rather abysmal with the exception of two students in this classroom and I have a feeling you two collaborated to cheat on my test,” added Gillworth. “Isn’t that right, Miss Granger and Mr. Potter?”
“Perhaps we’re just smarter than everything else in this classroom,” suggested Harry.
“Harry, that isn’t a nice thing to say,” reprimanded Hermione, before adding in a whisper. “Even if it is true.”
“Two perfect scores, completely undermining my system,” continued Gillworth as he bent down right towards Harry’s desk. “Once I can prove it, Mr. Potter, you will be kicked out of my class.”
Harry looked at Gillworth, a bullet right between his eyes seemed rather appealing at the moment.
“I don’t think you can prove it,” remarked Harry, looking at Gillworth with haunting green eyes. “Nothing to prove really, Remy.”
“You will address me with respect, you impudent brat!” yelled Gillworth and Vinny the snake poked his head out of Harry’s sleeve to look around.
“You know, some people are trying to sleep here,” said Vinny with an irritable hiss and Gillworth jumped back in absolute terror.
“OH MY GOD, IT’S A SNAKE!” shrieked Gillworth, nearly knocking over his desk. “Mr. Potter…you know…perhaps I was mistaken…”
Gillworth’s legs shook, before he collapsed, shaking madly, before rolling over, pale in fear, cowering behind his desk.
“Please stop, the horror, fangs, no, no, take it away, get rid of it, someone stop it!” cried Gillworth poking his head from behind his desk and saw that the snake was still there “No, it’s still there!”
“Pathetic,” interjected Vinny. “Doesn’t he know that I won’t bite him? I don’t want indigestion.”
“Who knew Professor Remington Q. Gillworth the Third, Esquire had Ophidiophobia,” said Harry and as a result, he got confused looks from everyone in the class, including Hermione. “That means he’s afraid of snakes.”
“Take that thing away, can’t you see he’s terrified!” demanded Evelyn.
“I don’t think I can see that quite yet. I think we should leave the snake in here for a few more hours or maybe the rest of the year to just make sure,” replied Harry.
“But if you want to get rid of it, Evelyn, be our guest,” added Hermione, smirking at the pompous girl’s growing sense of irritation.
“Eww, gross!” shrieked Evelyn as she got up to her feet before moving to the door. “I’m telling the headmistress, you two are in for it now!”
With that, she pushed the door open, before stomping through the hall, throwing a temper tantrum as she made her way down the hallway.
“Is that snake still out there?” whimpered Gillworth from behind his desk in a small, voice.
“Yes, Professor Remington Q. Gillworth, the Third, Esquire!” chanted the class in unison which caused Gillworth to make loud sobbing noises from behind his desk.
Gillworth cowered behind his desk for a few more minutes, before the classroom door opened and the Headmistress entered the classroom, followed by Evelyn, who looked rather pleased with herself, looking at Hermione and Harry with a vastly smug look on her face.
“It’s him, Headmistress Ingles!” screamed Evelyn. “Harry Potter, he had a snake and he threatened that he would feed all of us to it unless we did exactly what he said.
“Oh puh-lease,” hissed Vinny angrily as he rose up to allow Ingles to get a better look.
“Miss Simmons, back to your seat if you please,” ordered Ingles with a stern glare as Harry privately wondered if Minerva McGonagall had died, as Ingles sure seemed to be channeling her spirit at the moment. Evelyn walked back to her seat.
“Allow me to explain, m’am,” said Harry in a false sugary sweet voice that caused Hermione turn her back slightly, so she could stuff her fist in her mouth to stifle her giggles at how overdone Harry’s innocent act was.
“Yes please do, because I am a loss at why exactly you would want to bring a snake of all things into a classroom,” answered the Headmistress.
“Well, you see, I have recently joined a new religion,” said Harry quickly. “It has to do with worshipping snakes as gods and our faith requires us to carry around a snake as a familiar.”
“As a familiar, you say, Mr. Potter,” repeated Ingles in a slow voice, as this sounded dangerously like a cult. “Well, as much as I am tolerant of all religions…”
“GET THAT INFERNAL THING OUT OF MY CLASSROOM!” yelled Gillworth in a horrified voice and Ingles whipped around, staring at the desk.
“Gillworth, be quiet or I’ll have to cut your pay!” snapped Ingles in a sharp voice.
“What pay?” questioned Gillworth. “I believe children in sweatshops in third world countries make more money a day then I do in a year.”
Ingles turned around to stare at Harry, deciding to ignore Gillworth who continued to whimper behind his desk.
“Fine, Mr. Potter, you want to have the snake in here, you can keep it, but under one condition,” continued Ingles quickly.
“Anything,” replied Harry, flashing an innocent smile towards the Headmistress.
“Keep it, but if it bites anyone…well anyone important, it will be out of here,” said Ingles. “Understood?”
“NO!” cried Gillworth as he wept in terror of a slimy reptile taking up presence in the classroom.
“Yes, understood, Vinny won’t bite anyone in this classroom,” said Harry sweetly.
“Nor would I want to,” added the snake in a disgusted tone.
“Very well, I have important matters to attend to and Gillworth, get out from behind that desk, now!” demanded Ingles and Gillworth pulled himself to his feet, legs trembling in fear.
“That’s not fair!” yelled Evelyn. “Why should he be allowed a pet?”
“Miss Simmons, would you like to have to stay after school?” asked Ingles, as she narrowed her eyes.
“No,” said Evelyn before turning to glare at Harry and Hermione, folding her arms in disgust.
Ingles turned to leave the classroom, walking down the hallway as Gillworth looked at Harry with a mixture of fear and loathing, before shaking his head to regain his composure.
“On with class, then,” said Gillworth in a shaky voice. “Today’s arithmetic lesson will feature…”
Narcissa Black sat in the Headmistress’s office at Hogwarts, twirling her hair while she awaited Professor McGonagall. Her goal was to acquire the position of Potions Professor that was vacated because of Severus Snape’s untimely incarceration in Azkaban prison. Snape looked at the potential of life in Azkaban and they were still reviewing the case from what Narcissa heard, with potential for the Dementor’s Kiss to be added on. The Wizengamot was swamped with legislation, mostly involving reducing the rights of werewolves and vampires, spearheaded by Dolores Umbridge, a key member of the Department of the Regulation and Control of Dangerous Magical Creatures. Many believed that Umbridge loved her job a little too much but still was ambitious enough to move up in the world to further push her agenda against half breeds. She backed Cornelius Fudge, who was one of the front runners to take the spot of Minister of Magic, along with Bartemius Crouch, once Minister Bagnold had retired. Dumbledore had obviously been a choice, but his disappearance combined with the recent scandal involving Harry Potter made his ascension to Minister impossible.
Matters at the Ministry were far from Narcissa’s mind as she awaited McGonagall for her job interview. Narcissa had always excelled in Potions, receiving an Outstanding grade in her N.E.W.T. examination. So, she was qualified to teach the subject but the reasons that she was applying for the subject were far from her qualifications. Recently, her sister, Bellatrix, had come to her with a message from the Dark Lord himself. Since Snape had proven himself to be an absolute failure, the Dark Lord didn’t have a spy within Hogwarts on the teaching staff. So, Narcissa was to do everything in her power to get her hands on the position and report occasionally to Bellatrix, who would pass off any important information to the Dark Lord.
At times, Narcissa had hoped she had seen the last of the Dark Lord, but that hope was not to be. Granted, in the beginning, she supported the Dark Lord one hundred percent. His aims for the purification of the magical race were admirable and as a respected pureblood, Narcissa had to admit the Dark Lord said the right things. Over time through, it became clear to Narcissa, although she never dared voice this opinion that the Dark Lord was only out for power for himself. Lucius had deluded himself to the point that the Dark Lord would put him in a better position, discounting the fact that the Malfoy name held enough pull to gain a fair amount of power. Narcissa was almost sure that others who had previously supported the Dark Lord had come to the realization that he had only been out for his own glory in the magical world. They did not state their claims because they feared retribution from the Dark Lord and his legions of devoted followers.
Bella, on the other hand, wasn’t devoted to following the Dark Lord. Rather, she was completely obsessed with him. Even when they were children, Narcissa knew her sister to be a bit eccentric for lack of a better turn. After many years of serving the Dark Lord and an extensive period in a high security cell in Azkaban, with constant exposure to Dementors, had driven Bellatrix to the point of uncontrollable madness. She needed mental help, but the Dark Lord had encouraged and at times exploited her insanity for his own benefit. Bella would not listen to any reason, other than the Dark Lord’s, and that made her dangerous. There were times that Narcissa had feared for her life and the life of her son when Bella had paid her a visit, choosing her words carefully and not saying anything to might be misinterpreted as disrespect towards the Dark Lord.
These thoughts were not dwelled upon much longer as McGonagall had entered the office, looking a bit worn out. It was obviously that she expected Dumbledore to be Headmaster for many years to come and being trust in the Headmistress position on little notice came as a bit of a shock.
“Miss Black, I do apologize for being late, I’ve not be able to find a suitable Transfiguration Professor as well to take my place, so juggling both the responsibilities of being Headmistress and still teaching can be a bit overwhelming at times,” remarked McGonagall in a tired voice and Narcissa nodded politely. “I’ll be quite glad when the Board of Governors decides a permanent Head.”
McGonagall cleared her throat, before assuming her usual stern demeanor.
“Miss Black, you are here to apply for the job as Potions Professor, if I’m not mistaken,” continued McGonagall.
“Yes,” answered Narcissa, making sure to maintain eye contact and proper composure as she addressed McGonagall. “I trust you found my note citing my marks in Potions throughout Hogwarts.”
“I did,” said McGonagall. “And Professor Slughorn was rather complimentary on your performance when he taught you. I do have a few more applications to go through but your abilities in Potions are far and above those who applied for some time. There is, but one area of concern…”
“My ex-husband, correct,” interjected Narcissa.
“Unfortunate, but the Board of Governors has not been too complimentary on Lucius,” said McGonagall. “He may have used blackmail to persuade their decisions one time too many. I wasn’t there, so I don’t know, but I have in fact heard the rumors.”
“Lucius did some questionable things, along with what got he thrown into Azkaban,” replied Narcissa. “I’m not denying that, but I tried not to go out of my way to find out to the extent of what my former husband did.”
“I only ask this, because, I would hate to have to repeat the Severus Snape fiasco and have someone fully in support of You-Know-Who working in Hogwarts,” said McGonagall and Narcissa responded by rolling up both of her sleeves, exposing her bare forearms.
“My ex-husband has a dark mark, as you see, I do not,” said Narcissa crisply. “He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named had some interesting aims that I at one time agreed with but once I saw what he was truly about, I tried to distance myself away from him as far as possible. It’s a shame Lucius did not. I do hope that I have put your fears to ease.”
“Yes, for the time being, but the Board of Governors are taking an active role after some of the hiring decisions Dumbledore made during his time as Headmaster,” said McGonagall. “Snape, Trelawney, more Defense Against the Dark Arts teachers who weren’t qualified than I care to remember. The truth is, you may very well get the job just on your qualifications alone, but with your ex-husband, if someone with credentials that are just as acceptable, they would be more likely to get the job.”
Narcissa nodded slowly, it was a roadblock that she had foreseen but for her sake, she had to get that job as Potions Professor.
“I suspect you will be hearing from the Board of Governors in June or July either way,” concluded McGonagall.
“Yes, thank you for your time,” said Narcissa as she rose to her feet in a dignified matter before bidding McGonagall farewell and departed the Headmistress’s office.
On a slow Saturday morning in the latter part of April, at the headquarters of Harry’s mob organization, Harry sat in his office looking over the financial records of his many investments. Sirius sat in his office, looking bored as he absent mindedly read the Daily Prophet. Even after all of these months, Harry had not heard one word for the Ministry about Sirius’s trial, which agitated both Sirius and Harry to no end. Harry began to make vague plans to force the issue, but an opportunity fell into his lap so to speak.
“Hmm, this is interesting, the Daily Prophet is suspending operation until further notice,” muttered Sirius as he looked at the paper.
“Wait, why?” asked Harry.
“Hang on a minute…” said Sirius as he read the article for a few seconds. “Something about their distribution contract negotiations running into a snag and not having the proper funding to print the paper anymore. Their business model isn’t the best to be frank, charging a fraction for the paper of what it actually takes to print the paper. A shame, as despite how sketchy some of the information is, it is an outlet to get a vague picture. Now unless someone decides to step in and pick up the distribution contract, the Daily Prophet is finished.”
Harry sat, rubbing his chin with a thoughtful look on his face.
“Yes, a shame, but what if someone who does have the funds to pay whatever the Prophet does pick up their distribution contract?” asked Harry, his eyes full of glee as he bounced up to his feet, before walking over to the cupboard to grab a vial of potion.
After taking a sizeable gulp of potion, Harry’s features contorted to that of his alter ego as the Ministry knew him on that day of the Dumbledore trial, Allan Michael Barone.
“Where exactly are you going, anyway, Harry?” asked Sirius, even through he did have a good idea, he just wanted to make sure.
“Come on Sirius, you didn’t think I’d miss a business opportunity like this, would you?” asked Harry in a rhetorical manner. “If all goes according to plan, the Ministry of Magic will be forced to give you your trial, no excuses whatsoever.”
With that, Harry went downstairs to proceed to tell his men of his plan to begin to put their operations into the Wizarding World. This was the first step to test the waters for future operations and Harry proceeded to go to the center of all financial operations in the Wizarding World, Gringotts.
After getting everything in order, hours later, after a quick stop at the Law Office of Schyster and Boldface, several members of Harry’s criminal organization arrived at Gringotts, with the disguised young mob leader in tow. They entered the bank, looking around to see many goblins lurking around. Even some of these hardened mob members found themselves a bit intimidated by the goblins, but did their best not to show any emotion.
“Excuse me,” said Harry to a goblin sitting behind the front desk.
“May I help you?” asked the goblin in a cold voice.
“I am here to inquire about the recently open distribution contract for the Daily Prophet,” answered Harry which caused the goblin’s eyes to snap up with glee.
“Naturally, right this way, Mr. Potter,” said the goblin prompted and Harry looked dumbstruck, wondering exactly how the goblin knew him.
“Stay out here, this shouldn’t take too long, but if anyone suspicious comes this way, follow them,” muttered Harry.
“Right, Boss Potter,” answered the mobsters and Harry followed the goblin down the halls of Gringotts to a large conference room while the goblin motioned for him to sit down
“I shall return in a minute with the owner of the Daily Prophet, to speak on the terms of the distribution,” said the goblin as he walked off.
Harry sat in relative silence and a moment later, the goblin returned with a man in his early sixties with stringy grey hair and slightly tattered black robes.
“Ah, it wasn’t quite who I expected to pick up the distribution contract for the paper, but I suppose the Ministry has their reasons in sending someone else other than that foul woman to conduct business,” said the Daily Prophet owner. “Still, if the Ministry isn’t willing to…”
“I’m not from the Ministry,” announced Harry who looked very interested in this proclamation and it explained a lot about how the Ministry could really lean on the Daily Prophet when they wanted to. “I do however have an offer you can’t refuse.”
“Really, well, I’m listening,” said the Daily Prophet owner before extending his hand to shake Harry’s. “Reginald Baxter, Owner of the Daily Prophet.”
“Boss Allan Michael Barone, Mafia Boss,” replied Harry as he took Baxter’s hand and shook it.
“The same Barone who has custody of Harry Potter?” inquired Baxter.
“Yes, I’m that guy, but that’s beyond the point,” said Harry. “The offer is clear, five million galleons…”
“Just to pick up the distribution contract!” exclaimed Reginald Baxter in an excited voice. That amount was many times more than he wanted from the Ministry.
“No, please let me finish,” amended Harry. “I want complete and full ownership of the Daily Prophet.”
In a hundred years, Reginald Baxter would not have expected anyone to offer to buy the Daily Prophet, which despite its high distribution, didn’t net enough to turn a profit. The precise reason why he had to enter this unholy alliance with the Ministry and tow the line, instead of presenting a balanced view as any publication should.
“Complete and full ownership you say,” repeated Baxter in a bit of a shocked voice.
“Just sign on the dotted line,” answered Harry as he removed a completely legally binding contract. “And you have enough money to retire?”
“Are you certain you can afford this price?” questioned Baxter.
“Human, this man right here makes about that much in interest in the time in takes to blink your eyes,” informed the goblin.
“Well that may just be a bit of an exaggeration, but I am well off,” added Harry. “This is just pittance as far as I’m concerned.”
Baxter read the contract over, very carefully.
“It says here that I get forty percent of all subscription sales,” said Baxter.
“A gesture of goodwill on my part, as money is not a problem as far as I’m concerned,” replied Harry. “It’s not the value of gold I’m worried about, it’s the power of the printed word that is priceless and the Daily Prophet’s distribution is great.”
“Well, you’ve sold me,” concluded Baxter as a quill and bottle of ink magically appeared in front of him, and he signed the contract and then slid it over to Harry to sign the contract. Once the contracts were signed, a duplicate was magically made, to give Baxter a copy for his own records while a third copy was made for Gringotts’ records.
“Pleasure doing business with you,” said Harry.
“Likewise,” answered Baxter and at that moment, a second, rather disgusted goblin entered the room with an unfortunately familiar face.
“Ah, Mr. Baxter, you’re here, excellent,” said Dolores Umbridge in a sickly sweet voice and at this point, Vinny the snake poked his head out from underneath the sleeve of Harry’s traveling cloak.
“What in the hell is that thing?” demanded Vinny.
“The ultimate toad bitch from hell,” replied Harry in a low voice, careful not to allow Umbridge or anyone else hear him speaking Parseltongue.
“The Ministry is willing to bump up the contract to twenty five thousand galleons, more than acceptable and this our final offer,” said Umbridge calmly before she locked eyes on the form of Barone. “The infamous Mr. Barone, I presume.”
“You presume correctly…I’m sorry, I haven’t had the er pleasure,” said Harry.
“Oh yes, forgive me, Dolores Umbridge at your service,” informed Umbridge as she extended her hand out for Barone to shake but he didn’t take it.
“I prefer not, I just washed,” answered Harry with a disgusted voice and Umbridge looked at him with a disapproving glare.
“Ah, what would a Mudblood such as yourself know about proper etiquette,” said Umbridge before turning to Baxter. “Onto more important matters, what do you say to this offer, Mr. Baxter? I have the contract drawn up right here.”
Umbridge reached out with her pudgy hand, contract in hand and shoved it right under Baxter, before looking at him with a smug look.
“Well, Madam Umbridge, I have this to say about your contract,” answered Baxter and without another word, he ripped the contract in half, before shoving it in her face. “Good day to you all.”
Umbridge stood their in shock and after a moment, Harry couldn’t contain himself any longer, he burst out into laughter.
“May I ask what is so funny, Barone?” demanded Umbridge, not sounding like her artificially sweet self at all.
“You mean besides the fact you were bred from a human and a toad,” suggested Harry. “No, the fact remains that I was here to witness the Ministry’s greatest blunder yet. You shortchanged perhaps the greatest resource at your disposal and now I have it, thus putting the Ministry at my collective mercy, which I can assure you I have very little?”
“Exactly, what are you getting at, criminal?” asked Umbridge.
“I now own the Daily Prophet and thus the Ministry has no power of what is written in it,” said Harry.
“THE MINISTRY WILL NOT STAND FOR THIS!” shrieked Umbridge.
“I doubt the Wizarding World would care too much if they found out that the government pretty much ran the biggest paper,” said Harry. “I’m going to bring integrity back to the press, as foreign as a concept that might seem like.”
Umbridge looked absolutely agitated.
“Other papers can be started up,” remarked Umbridge when she finally found her voice.
“And Ministry of Magic building can also spontaneously combust unless you give Sirius Black his rightful trial,” commented Harry in a casual voice. “You will deliver a message to the Ministry, that Sirius Black will receive his rightful trial or so help me, the Wizarding World will suffer a cataclysmic disaster that will make Lord Voldemort seem like a boy scout.”
“Is that a threat?” whispered Umbridge.
“No, of course not, but you do have to admit, accidents do happen,” said Harry in a gruff voice. “What won’t be an accident is what I can write in the Daily Prophet that can destroy reputations of certain Ministry officials.”
“So, you are going to blackmail us with lies, Barone,” answered Umbridge in a disgusted voice.
“Why use lies, when the complete and accurate truth is more damaging?” asked Harry before staring at Umbridge. “And while I’m on the subject, I have a special message to Crouch, because I know for a fact that he’s doing everything in his power to make sure Sirius doesn’t get his day in court. So tell him that I know his biggest, most guarded secret, the secret that he doesn’t want to get out and will destroy his entire life if I tell it. So, hop onto the Ministry and deliver my messages, if you will.”
Umbridge pulled out her wand with a misguided notion to curse him but Harry quickly pulled out a handgun before shooting towards Umbridge.
Umbridge flinched but Harry had shot it at an angle that caused the bullet to miss for several inches and lodge itself in the wall behind Umbridge.
“Next time, I won’t miss,” whispered Harry as he held the gun in a threatening matter and the look in his eyes indicated to Umbridge that he wasn’t kidding.. “Next time it will be right in your skull, Dolores.”
Umbridge didn’t bother to respond, just glaring at Harry with a hateful look on her toad face.
“Deliver my message as indicated,” answered Harry before adding as an afterthought. “Tell them they have one week, no more. Is that understood?”
“Yes!” snapped Umbridge in a hateful voice as she walked from her office, muttering obscenities underneath her breath.
“You should have shot her with that firearm,” remarked one of the goblins in a casual voice to Harry before the Boy-Who-Lived-Twice rose to his feet and walked from the office down the hallway to greet his mobsters. He had other business to attend to on this day.