Categories > Books > Harry Potter > Elementary Calculations


by kcourtkat 35 reviews

Category: Harry Potter - Rating: PG - Genres: Drama - Characters: Draco,Harry,Hermione,Ron - Published: 2008-05-24 - Updated: 2008-05-24 - 3384 words

1I do not own Harry Potter.

So the last chapter got you did it. That’s what I was aiming for. Thank you reviewers, your response was greatly appreciated.

Chapter7: (232.78 x 1.8)+32

Harry scowled at the papers in his hands. Once the initial outrage had passed, he had set about salvaging what he could of his life’s work. A trip to the Academy -with Petunia of all people- had been enlightening. It was readily apparent that some compulsions had been involved to anyone who was looking for it.

Headmaster Kelley had told them that while his loyalty and determination to stay were admirable, he should think about the safety of the other students, and that Hogwarts was the safest place for him to be. He also mentioned that Petunia should not cave into Harry’s arguments. Considering that the man took great pride in hosting the children of some very important people, security at the school was top notch. It became obvious during the conversation that his continued presence at the school was not going to be a viable option. They had managed to argue the man down to a correspondence learning program.

As the goblins were the most likely candidates to have dealings with the non magical world, he had gone to them. They had put him in contact with one of the squibs who worked for them in the muggle world. He would receive Harry’s lessons by fax and send them to him via a charmed tray he had to pay a small fortune for. Franklin would get his answers back the same way and fax them to the school. There was a fee for the continuous service, but thankfully, since he would not be in residence at the school, and Kelley hadn’t gotten around to revoking his scholarship yet (or rather, since Dumbledore did not know of the scholarship), the price was covered. Harry could have had the papers directed to his aunt and have her send it to him for free, but while the two could now commiserate about a certain interfering old bastard, they were not friends, he wasn’t about to trust her with his future.

The papers in his hands, while children milled around outside the Hogwarts Express, represented the sharp turn his life had taken in a direction he did not approve of. Not for the first time, he cursed himself for choosing Mandarin instead of German as his language elective at Xavier.

At least it wasn’t a total loss. I can’t even charge the old bastard since the fools who populate this place would probably applaud him for setting me on the true path or something. One comment on how safe Hogwarts was for me and they would fall all over themselves to scold me for wanting to stay in a muggle institution.

If there was one thing he had noted when reading up on the esteemed headmaster, it was that he could do no wrong in the eyes of most people. The ones that did dislike the man were not necessarily people that he wanted to be allied with, not now at least, when he couldn’t hold his own.

There is much I will need to learn, if one man can just completely redirect my life with the flick of a wand, then I’ll have to make myself strong enough that it doesn’t happen again. Ever.

I also have to make myself as forgettable as possible. It may have suited my purposes to be at the top of the class at Xavier and in primary, but here it will only put me more into the spotlight. I need to be in a House where it won’t look strange for me to be studying at odd times. I have to at least be close to the top though: it would get attention for me to be studying all the time and only be earning middling grades.

I probably couldn’t get into Gryffindor if I tried, Hufflepuff either. I just don’t have the loyalty for the latter or the impulsiveness for the former. Slytherin is the one that fits me the most, but they’ll crucify me as the next Dark Lord if I do get in. Ravenclaw is ideal and the only true option I have. No one will think twice about a Ravenclaw having a book that isn’t on the booklist.

A sneer curled his lips. He had read the first year books, excepting potions, there was nothing in them that he couldn’t accomplish on his own without the wand.

Speaking of which. Harry took out the dark red wand. He had gone through half the store before the creepy old wandmaker handed him a holly, phoenix feather combo and then seemed quite surprised when the wand had only given off a few sparks. This had been more than the absolute nothing that had happened so far, but still. The man brushed it off by saying that he’d had a feeling but appeared to be wrong. It was a further ten minutes before he had grasped his new wand. Sandalwood and kraken’s blood. It had connected to his magic straight through his shields (it occurred to him in retrospect that the shield was probably the reason that none of the other wands had worked at all, also why the phoenix wand had done so poorly).

Spending the last three days in the Leaky Cauldron, he had gotten ample opportunity to test out his wand. The high magic area had disguised his use of the focus. He had long since come to the conclusion that only muggleborns were actually monitored for the use of under aged magic. And that the Ministry only tracked wand magic. It was the only explanation for why no one had ever intruded on his little practices.

The wand had taken some getting use to though. The same amount of power, which gently lifted a lamp without the wand, sent it careening into the ceiling with it. Trial and error had given him a baseline for how much to put in his spells. Twirling the wand in his hand, he smiled at the cool feeling that it gave off. It certainly complemented his magic well. He would have to wait til Hogwarts to fine-tune the power of his jinxes and hexes in class with the wand, and wandlessly outside of class on some unsuspecting and unwary test subjects.

The train whistle blew, breaking his line of thought. Outside he could see children waving goodbye to their families and hurrying to get on. The ghost of a frown flitted across his face briefly and then it was gone. Harry put the papers back in his messenger bag (which he had paid to have modified to be bottomless and feather light) and withdrew one of the books he had bought that cataloged many water spells and describing their effects.

As the train started moving, a knock on the door heralded the entry of a red haired, freckle faced boy.

“Can I share with you? All the other compartments are full.” A slow nod had him smiling and lifting his trunk onto the overhead rack. He sat across from Harry and shifted nervously trying to think of something to say.

“Ronald Weasley, pleased to meet you, everyone just calls me Ron,” was offered with a shaky smile.

“Harry Potter.”

The reaction was immediate. His eyes widened and went straight to Harry’s forehead. He also appeared to lose the slight apprehension that he was feeling a minute ago.

“Harry Potter! Do you really have it? You know,” his voice lowered to a whisper, “the scar?”

“Yes.” Harry’s voice did not invite further comment. Non the less. . .

“Can I-”

“No.” Ron lowered his eyes from their place on Harry’s forehead and caught the narrow eyed gaze. Eyes flitting briefly to the absently twirling wand, he sank back into his seat with a gulp.

The compartment door opened again and another red haired boy poked his head inside.

“Ah, there you are. See you’re all settled in,” the door opened fully to reveal a his twin as he turned to Harry.

“We’re Fred and George Weasley, we just wanted to make sure that little Ronnikins here was alright.” Harry found the alternating speech mildly amusing, not that it showed.

“Harry,” he offered, not wanting a repeat of the previous scene.

“Alright then Harry, I guess we’ll see you at Hogwarts.” They closed the door behind them, leaving the two alone together.

Silence reigned as Harry read his book and Ron fidgeted uncomfortably in his seat. A while later there was a knock on the door as an older woman pushing a cart of snacks opened it.

“Something off the trolley children?”

Ron pulled out a corned beef sandwich and shook his head. “None for me,” he said grimacing slightly.

Harry reached into his bag for the ham and cheese sandwich he had asked Tom to prepare that morning.

“No, thank you.”

“OK then dears,” she said pulling the door closed behind her.

Only the crinkle of wrappers and the sound of pages turning were heard until a much younger girl barged in. Harry barely got the impression of bushy brown hair dominating a pretty face when she started to talk.

“Have either of you seen a toad? A boy named Neville’s lost one.” Two heads were shaken and she was about to leave when she caught sight of the book Harry was reading.

“That doesn’t look like one of our textbooks,” she said coming closer.

“That’s because it’s not.”

“Oh. I read through all of my textbooks. I was so surprised when I got my letter. I do hope I do well. I imagine the children that grew up with magic will be waiting for people like me to catch up. I’m Hermione Granger by the way.”

“All that in one breath. I’m impressed Miss Granger,” Harry allowed the corner of his lips to curve slightly, “Harry Potter.”

“Harry Potter. I’ve read about you-”

“I’ve read about me too Ms. Granger. Such interesting pieces of fiction they were.”

“Are you saying the books are wrong?” Hermione asked in a scandalized tone.

“I’m saying only two people know for a fact everything that happened that night. One is vanished and I have certainly never been interviewed. The books have conjecture and nothing more.”

He could see her thinking his logic through. A crease appeared between her brows.

“I see. Do you know what House you want to be in? I’d prefer Gryffindor they say that Dumbledore was in Gryffindor. If not, then Ravenclaw is a close second.”

“Gryffindor, House of the courageous and daring. I somewhat doubt I’ll end up there.”

“What?” he had forgotten the red head was there, from the looks of it Hermione had forgotten as well. “But you’re the Boy Who Lived, of course you’ll be in Gryffindor.”

“And you are?” Hermione wrinkled her nose briefly, not impressed with the boy.

“Ron Weasley at your service. My entire family’s been in Gryffindor, I can’t imagine being anywhere else. Harry’s going to be a Gryffindor too, everyone knows that Potters are sorted into Gryffindor. Besides, he killed You-Know-Who.”

“Personally I do believe that Ravenclaw is where I’ll end up.”

“But everyone says-” Ron was cut off as displeased green eyes bore into him.

“It’s a good thing I’m not everyone, now isn’t it?” Ron sank down in confusion. Harry Potter was a hero and everyone knew that heroes were Gryffindors. Maybe he’s just trying to get her to choose Ravenclaw instead. Who reads textbooks in the summer anyway. She’s just some know it all. That’s it, we’ll get into Gryffindor together and she’ll be with the other bookworms. That must be it.

“I suppose I want to be known for something other than being studious,” Hermione said, ignoring Ron again.

“If you do get into Gryffindor, and need someone intelligent to talk to, you’ll know where to find me. And keep in mind people aren’t always what the books say they are.” She left the compartment to continue searching for Neville’s toad.

“Glad that’s over,” Ron said staring at the door. “I don’t want to imagine what Gryffindor would be like if she got in.”

Harry shook his head almost imperceptibly. He knew people like Hermione. They were objects of ridicule to children their own ages, who did not do as well. Picked on for knowing the answers. Some tried to suppress themselves so they would fit in, others pushed anyone their own age away and strove to get the approval of their authority figures in order to validate themselves. Hermione looked to be one of the latter trying to shed that stigma.

If the Dursley’s were decent people, I could have turned out like her. An image of himself happily looking up to Petunia and Vernon for a pat on the head and a ‘well done’ flashed through his mind. A shudder of pure horror worked its way through his system. Imagine, actually trusting the authority figures in my life. I would probably have taken Dumbledore’s words about safety to heart.

His contemplations were interrupted by a blond inviting himself and his two goons into the compartment.

“They say that Harry Potter is on this train,” the blond announced, looking at him “are you he?”

“And if I am?”

The blond extended his hand. “I am Draco Malfoy-”

His introduction was ruined by the snickering of the redhead. “Think my name’s funny do you? Let see, red hair, freckles, hand me down clothes, you must be a Weasley,” he sneered down at Ron, who was clenching his wand in his hands, before turning back to Harry. “You’ll find, Potter, that some wizarding families are better than others, you don’t want to hang around the wrong sort. I can help you there.”

“I don’t doubt it. Are you related to Lucius Malfoy by any chance?” Harry had come across the name when reading about the aftermath of the war. Malfoy was one of the purebloods captured as a Death Eater but released because he claimed to be under the imperius curse.

Draco puffed up in pride. “He is my father.”

“He’s a Death Eater, just like all of you slimy Slytherins,” Ron snapped. Harry put away his book and took out a bottle of butterbeer. He sipped while watching the two of them argue. One never knows what you can learn from conflicts like these.

“My father is a respectable and proper pureblood. Unlike you Weasley, or the rest of your blood traitor family.”

“Your father should be in Azkaban with the rest of the criminals.”

“The only thing criminal I see is the way that blood traitors like your parents are allowed to spawn-”

“Don’t you ever talk about my family. Just cause you don’t have any siblings-”

“There are what, ten of you, and you can’t even afford to dress yourselves properly.”

It was at this point that Ron threw himself at the blond with a yell, he managed to get in one hit before the goons grabbed him. They were just starting to beat him to a pulp when a new redhead with a gold ‘P’ badge on his lapels came in.

“What is the meaning of this?” he snapped pulling the goons of his brother.

“That barbarian attacked me,” Draco said, wiping blood from his chin, “I demand he be punished.”

“We’re not even at Hogwarts yet and you’re already fighting?” the prefect asked Ron.

“I couldn’t just sit there while he insulted our family.” Ron said, scowling at him. The skin around his eye was already turning puffy.

“I told the truth. Not my fault-”

“That’s enough. The four of you are coming with me.” And with that, Harry was once again alone in the train car.

Well that was entertaining. Years of stereotyping in action. Now if only no one would enter the car for the rest of the trip.


Harry settled his face into the familiar lines of his polite mask as he and the other first years were led into the Great Hall. He heard Hermione explaining the glamour over the ceiling. Then the tatty old hat on the stool in front of the head table began to sing. He almost sneered. They were barely here and already the stereotypes were being reinforced.

They divide up their population in such a way that one fourth is automatically mistrusted from the time they are eleven, then wonder why the Slytherins would join someone set on taking the place over.

He paid attention to each child sorted, trying to remember names and faces. Little things like that came in handy. He was slightly disappointed when Hermione was sorted into Gryffindor. That won’t end well.

Eventually his own name was called and the whispers followed him all the way to the stool. The sound was cut off when the hat settled over his eyes.

Well aren’t you the surprise. I dare say the Headmaster is in for a rough time with you isn’t he Potter?

The Headmaster should have minded his own business. Shall we get on with the sorting.

Ah, yes. Such an interesting mind you have, I can see your reasoning you know, are you sure you don’t want to be in Slytherin? It can help you get the power you want, more so than Ravenclaw. Intelligent as you are, you don’t like knowledge in and of itself, you like it for what you can get out of it later. They could use someone like you. Salazar would weep if he could see what his House has devolved to.

Ravenclaw offers a certain anonymity that I need for now. The power I want will be mine regardless of whether I’m in Slytherin or Ravenclaw. It might take a little longer with the eagles, but I will reach my goals.

As you wish. RAVENCLAW.

There was a shocked silence for a moment before the Ravenclaws burst into cheers.

The twins at the Gryffindor table, Fred and George Harry reminded himself, burst into fake tears. Harry suppressed a smug smirk at the disappointment he could see on Dumbledore’s face before the man cleared it, and the stunned shock in the rest of the teachers.

He took a seat next to several of his year mates, Li, Boots and Patil if he remembered correctly. They kept shooting him glances, but held off on the questions til the sorting was over. Harry twitched slightly when the Headmaster made his announcements including a warning about staying off a third floor corridor under threat of death.

I feel so much safer already.

The food appearing was apparently the signal for the interrogation to make begin. Questions came at him from all sides as everyone started to talk at once.

Better nip this in the bud quickly.

“Enough,” he snapped, the steely hiss in his voice cutting across their chatter. “Yes I really am Harry Potter, yes I do have the scar, no you cannot touch it and if one more of you brings up the night of my parents’ murder I will make sure that you regret it. Do I make myself perfectly clear?” Harry made sure to drop the temperature around them slightly, raising goose bumps on their skin and causing some to shiver.

It might be a cheap parlor trick, he thought as they pulled back, some paling when he glared at them, but damn if it doesn’t work.

There was a pocket of quiet around him for the rest of the feast as conversations stuttered to a halt whenever he looked in his house mates direction.

I think I’m starting to like this place already.

AN: So I’ll end it here for now. Next chapter, Snape makes his appearance and Harry and V. have a talk.
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