(Hogwarts, around the same time)
Viktor was staying up late this night. He always does that as a remembrance on over how many in his family had died at the hand of Grindelwald and later Voldemort. It was in no way an official tradition, but it was a family tradition and today he cherished it. The night was crystal clear and it looked like you could see forever. “Light,” he said, creating a tiny spark of light in his hand.
He remembered what the Sorting Hat gad said to him. “Wand-magic strong, High Magic average, Wiccan null and Mr. Krum if you had been in our school I would have sorted you among the Hufflepuffs or perhaps into Gryffindor, you have the courage and honor worthy of any Gryffindor and the loyalty and willingness to work hard that would have made Hufflepuff like a home.”
After the Sorting Hat had shown him his strength he was offered to learn High-Magic. Fleur, Cedric and Harry tutored him and helped him come up to speed with the rest of them and unlike many sport-stars he wasn’t afraid of hard work. He was still far behind the others, but he was gaining on them. High-magic… he could feel it. It was real magic and for the first time ever he had cast real magic and not the fake joke of magic wand magic is. He was in love with High-Magic and he knew the moment he had the skill he would break his own wand and only use High-Magic.
Already the crew was calling them the Champion Four as they spend a lot of time together or rather he spend most of his time with one of them.
Fleur, Cedric and Harry had other friends they spend time with. Worse of them was Cedric, he had tons of friends. He himself had fans that worshiped him for his broom skills. Not someone he liked to spend time with. So he chose to remain with the Champion Four, which he found a rather pretentious name for a study group.
The wind grew cold, but Durmstrang was located high up north in a fjord surrounded by mountains and the sea. Hogwarts and England had nothing compared to them when it came to cold winds. His homeland Bulgaria was far warmer than Durmstrang. Durmstrang was located near a place the Muggle called Treriksröset, a border between 3 countries, Sweden, Finland and Norway. Tall and old mountains covered in pine forests and snow everywhere. The mountains ended abruptly as the long fjord stretching in from the Atlantic seem to split them in half. The ocean water was open and never froze to ice.
He and other students sometimes just watched the setting autumn sun creating a sky of blood and they were overwhelmed by the painful beauty it held. One day he would return up north and he would build a school of magic, real High-Magic.
As the wind blew even stronger Viktor stood tall watching the night, day dreaming of things he would do in the future.
Bill looked real tired, so did Albus and even Xander felt drain. In the kitchen Harry was sleeping under careful guard. Moody was protecting the boy from outside intruders. The rest seemed to take their turns watching him sleep and making sure nothing was stolen from him. Albus was happy the locket was found. “That’s all of them,” he said.
“How will Harry destroy them? I mean not all at the same time, or?” Bill asked.
“I think I can draw a simple protective circle downstairs. Better safe than sorry and all that. One at the time is safer for us all. I made sure the warded room has a special circle he can put the Horcrux in before he takes them to the destruction place,” Xander replied.
“He looks so small to be carrying such an important mission,” Bill said while looking at Harry.
Xander snorted. “Fred and George constantly curse his hair red because they consider him to be a baby brother and all Weasley should have red hair.”
Bill grinned and said with a laugh, “They do, don’t they?”
Xander nodded. “Great guys ones I showed them why pranking me is a bad idea by cursing them. Did they tell anyone of you what the curse did?”
Molly giggled. “Minerva told me. I even got a photo and they look so cute.”
“Now I want to know,” Bill said.
“It turned them in to twin sisters,” Xander told the oldest of the Weasley children.
Behind them in the corner Moody started to laugh.
“Only for a short time, it was a time based and item based curse. Meaning once the time limit was over they would turn back or if the item the curse was tied to broke they would also turn back to normal,” Xander said while picking up a stick from the fire. “Molly would you like to have another daughter? I think Bill would make a lovely girl,” he said with a grin.
Molly seemed to consider it.
Bill drew his wand. “Mom… no way you say yes. I’m warning you I’m not going to be turned into a female.”
Molly giggled as she said, “No, we better not hurt his male ego.”
Hermione frowned and said, “Shouldn’t we wake Harry and get it over with?”
Albus nodded. “Indeed you are correct. Most of us dread the next part of our mission. Hunt down the now mortal Voldemort. Who knows how many lives we will have to kill on that part of our quest.”
Xander nodded. “Indeed,” he said, looking sad. Seeing Molly’s surprise he said, “Just because I kill them doesn’t mean I like to kill them. I just know it has to be done or the circle of racism and hatred will continue jet another generation. Death Eaters and their pureblood supporters are like a cancer and the only way to cure it is to cut it out of the body.”
Albus blinked. “Can’t the Wiccan or High-magic cure Cancer?” he wondered.
Hermione locked shocked.
“Um what? No, real powerful wiccan can get higher power to remove it. Normally no magic I’m aware of can cure Cancer. High-magic can use low power death magic to slowly and painful I might add. Kill the cancer while leaving the sick person alive. It’s tricky and a slow meted as the patient needs recovery time between each curse treatment and to much death magic and the patient dies instead of the cancer.” Like using radioactivity to kill Cancer.
“Then you should know that curing Cancer is something any wand healer can do with a simple wave of the wand. No form of Cancer regardless of how advanced it is can resist our cure-cancer spells. Then a simple recovery spell is used and the patient can go home the day after,” Albus explained. Sure it was a high power spell leaving most healers to tired to cast many more spells that day, but still it wasn’t that difficult to learn.
Xander blinked then pulled up his notebook. “Well… look who feels pathetic now.”
“No wand magic can regrow an arm or a leg. Not even a potion can do that. Well look who feels pathetic now,” Kingsley said.
Xander snorted out a laugh and then sighed. “That’s one reason I get so frustrated with you daughter Ginny. She has the ability to learn, Sorcery, High-magic and Wiccan. Yet she ignores Wiccan study because it’s so slow and not flashy. She could learn other non human types of magic because she is the seventh child of a seventh child. There is no type of magic that she cannot learn.” If she truly studied she could learn Goblin magic or Dragon magic. Whatever she tried to learn Ginny could learn.
“I have a talk to her,” Molly said, quite vexed with her child.
“No, she must want to learn, she can’t be forced. But if you take the time and explain the ups and downs.” He gave her an example out of his new books. “Page 67-70 holds a good example.”
“No I think it’s best if I do it. She always listens to me” Bill sais and looked at his mom and dad. They slowly nodded.
Harry was back among the living. “I had such a good dream,” he whined. “No more Voldemort and we had this huge party, there where clowns and a weird person dressed as a pimp. He wanted to talk to Xander and said his name was Whir. No wait…,” he mumbled a bit confused.
“Whistler,” Xander said. “He is a balance demon who works for the Powers that be, the overseers of humanity. What did he say exactly?”
Harry swallowed. “I didn’t listen so well. It was just a dream. Something about Glory to England.” He frowned. “Not Glory to England… no it was Gloria is in England. And then warn those you care about something about government war or something. Time running out, fix Tom Gears fault or something. I think that was it.”
Xander swore. “Harry fix the Horcrux now.”
“I explain the room for you Harry,” Albus said, following the boy upstairs.
Xander was thinking hard. “Whistler is on the force of good, most of the time. His work is making sure none of the sides, good or evil, become to unbalanced. He isn’t supposed to warn me,” he said and sat down with his hand under his check. “Gloria is Glorificus, a Hell goddess. We have hidden something she really wants.”
Bill swallowed. “Why not give it back?” he asked worried.
“End of the world if we give it back and the End of the world may happen if it gets destroyed, because then she can summon the parts and use it to destroy the world. Of course the chance exists that it may take Glorificus generations to discover the artifact is destroyed and she can get her little toy,” Xander explained.
“Good, don’t tell anybody where the artifact is. What kind of weaknesses does she have?” Moody said.
“No weakness known to man. Highly magical artifacts can hurt her, but not kill her. From a safe source I know she can be killed, I just don’t know how. This is a goddess we’re talking about. Able to use magic you wouldn’t believe from what I read. Luckily those powers seem to be limited somehow. She is strong enough to crash a building with her hands and she is faster than most dragon-girls,” Xander said.
“That’s scary,” Hermione said with a bit of fear in her tone.
“No, what is really scary, is the second warning. Government war time running out fix Tom. Gears fault.”
“What do that mean?” Molly asked.
“Gears is a paramilitary cult. They worship super-technology and kill anybody who uses magic. They can grow the plant Molly,” Xander replied to Molly’s question.
Bill looked shocked and then said, “Molly? That’s a myth.”
“No, the plant exists. The Watchers sometimes use it to subdue a magic user. The plant works almost like a zero. Its juice drains the magic away from you. The gears seem to be able to grow it. They are also connected to governments all over the world. They designed weapons to take down magic users,” Xander said.
Hermione nodded. “I think I get what you are saying. My mom and dad will be in danger then.”
“The Gears will use anything Tom does as propaganda. Some countries, especially China, are ready for war right now, if I’m correctly guessing. Unless we stop Tom quickly, he will create a situation the Gears will make use of to start a war.”
Hermione sniffed. “Do you really think they go that far?” she wondered.
A dark sensation like a evil vanished from the house interrupted them.
“The first Horcrux is banished. Two more to go,” Xander said to that feeling.
Molly swallowed. That had felt so evil.
A tired looking Albus returned. “So what did I miss?”
Xander shrugged as he said, “End of the world, the normal.”
He sighed as he was sitting down. “Do tell.”
A long explanation later Albus said, “It’s a wild guess most of it, but I think this time you are correct. The question is what can or should we do?”
“Take down snake face fast. Glory is just as bad. She doesn’t care if she kills a mortal or walks through a wall or something and until we found her weakness we can’t kill her. Really strong magic could seal her away, that’s what they did the last time. She remained sealed five hundred years. Problem is doing it again the same way is impossible so we need a new way of doing it. We can do it with High-magic most likely, the trouble is I have no idea how.”
“And just in case we should make preparations. Bring our families to a safe position. Buy food and so on,” Hermione said. “Magic wards can’t protect against conventional Muggle weapons. They can make it hard to find them or impossible. The Wiccan enchanted theirs, right Xander?”
Xander nodded. “Yes, at the time the Wards around Hogwarts were improved. The old ones stopped normal electronic from working,” he said, looking eager.
Hermione shook her head. “Remember your phone? It was military issue E.M.P protected it worked before the wards were adapted to let electronics work. All weapons that use electronic should be E.M.P adapted. You told me that yourself.”
Xander sulked “Forgot about that.”
“So if worst come to worst they can’t hit us then?” Moody asked.
Xander shook his head. “If only. If they’re shooting great enough numbers they can overwhelm the wards. I could improve it. A Gale wind could be used to protect against a thermobaric. That’s a Fuel-air-bomb. The Gale wind create an over pressure that would push the blast away,” he said while considering the options. “Hogwarts is our best defensible position. Excepted its location it to well known by Muggle governments.”
“That can’t be. It has Muggle confusion charms and all kind of wards including an unplotable charm,” Albus said.
“No they know. I saw an older student, seventh year pure blood, with a GPS installed in a watch, military issue. I asked him where he found that. He said and I quote: ‘A silly Muggle made me promise to carry this.” Then press the red button inside Hogwarts and outside Hogwarts wards on three locations and also in the middle of the village. Quite foolish, but I got a rich doing that’ End-quote,” Xander said.
“What does a gpswatch do?” Arthur asked.
“Not gpswatch. G.P.S. Global Positioning System. It can pin point you location anywhere in the world within half a meter. Muggle missiles and self navigating weapons often use these to find their targets,” Hermione said.
Another wave of darkness flowed thru the room making them all shiver.
“There are also remote controlled cameras installed in micro airplanes used to scout an area. I would bet the air space around Hogwarts have been filled with small camera carrying airplanes. Just because they can’t enter or find us doesn’t mean that computers can’t. I know for a fact that G.P.S. works inside Hogwarts. The fault error increased from half a meter to almost five meters, but that’s that.”
Now the adults, at least some of them, looked worried.
“Could they as an example build a car that is controlled by remote and let it carry soldiers’ right through the gate of Hogwarts?” Sirius asked.
Xander nodded. “Yes, there are some vehicles that can do that, both within military and rescue operations. They are designed to be sent inside areas where nobody should go and try to save people trapped inside areas of fire and chemical leaks or too much enemy fire and traps. Instead of risking a driver they send it in via remote control.”
Hermione shivered. “This is just theory right?”
Xander shrugged. “Not sure. If Whistler warned us, then I’m going to make sure your mother and father are safe and be really careful about it.” He looked uncertainty and then said, “I’ll have to talk to Alfred.”
Hermione swallowed. “That guy?”
“Who or what is Alfred?” Albus wanted to know.
“A master of body language and non-magical mind manipulation. He is also the government representative I talk to and one of the best assassins this country has never had.”
They all blinked and then Molly said, “You said never had.”
Xander nodded. “Officially Britain doesn’t have Assassins. They never had. Unofficially Britain has made use of them since the early 1600 or even before that. Each of them know, that if they are caught Britain will not even know who they are.” He grinned. “The Watchers have had their run in with British Assassins fighting on their side and even against them. Officially the Watchers all agree they never existed. It’s better for you health that way, less danger of accidental death by daggers or bullets. Alfred is the best they never had. Because even knowing who or what he is and what he may do to you is dangerous. He can make you trust him more then you trust you own best friend, so you don’t get scared if he stands close too you until it’s too late.”
Bill looked curious. “How did you learn that he is an Assassin?”
“The Watchers knew. He apparently tried to kill a Warlock, but that dark wizard was mostly immune to any form of un-magical weapons. Giles told me the Watchers hit-team found Alfred quite confused in front of a tied up Warlock that he had been poisoning, drugging, stabbing, cutting, shooting, removing body organs including his head for hours with no effect other than pain for the warlock. They of course helped him and an unsteady working relation started.”
“If the government is planning something he could be a risk,” Hermione stated.
Xander nodded. “That is one risk I’m willing to take. Alfred loyalty is to the Queen and the people of Britain first, he just obeys the government as long as it doesn’t conflicts with his loyalties. That’s the best analysis we have of him.”
Hermione tried not to think about the fact that the best analysis of Alfred couldn’t be that good. Alfred specialty was fooling people. “I still think you should have a meeting with him on his ground and if you do make sure you have proper security prepared.”
Xander snorted. “Against the like of Alfred only extra ordinary security would work, if that.”
Hermione looked like an angry schoolteacher at a bad student. “Well then you just have to take extra ordinary security.”
A last tremble of darkness rushed through the room, sending shivers of fear in the hearts of all inside the house.
“That was the last one we must hope,” Albus said as they felt the third Horcrux being destroyed.
Sirius nodded and then asked, “Kids… what about Atomic bombs? I read about them. Lilly and her friend Jenny Brown forced me to.”
Xander and Hermione blinked. “We researched Nagasaki and Hiroshima, both had enclaves of hidden wizard colonies and in both places they survived. Nagasaki was less than a kilometer away from ground zero, the middle of the explosion,” Hermione said.
“That’s far away,” Moody said.
“No, it’s not. ‘Little boy’ the smaller and the weakest of the two atomic bombs had a blast radius of 2.7 miles and then a fire storm of around 3,2 miles in diameter and last there is the radiation poisoning that’s still killing people today, except magic users. From Japanese research they can survive extreme high doses of radiation. Our wards seem to protect against the blast and the fire storm. How…? They have no idea,” Xander explained.
“No real research has been done in this area, but if war does happen and they pull out their mightiest most powerful weapon that should destroy us in one single blast... We are immune,” Hermione said with a smile.
Sirius started to laugh. “Oh god. Lilly and Jenny so often feared that would happen.”
Harry tired voice interrupted whatever they were going to say. “Jenny who?” he asked.
“Oh, Jenny Brown, she was a Muggleborn from Canada and a friend of Lilly. They were like sisters those two,” Sirius replied and smiled a bit. “I think that Jenny may have liked me. She knew an awful lot about me. Things she would only have found out if she had been asking others about me. Sadly she always turned me down. Must have been shy, Lilly did find it more amusing then I did. She would have been a perfect wife. Had the same sense of humor I did,” he said innocently.
Harry blinked then started to laugh before rushing out laughing like crazy. He knew that his dad James had the same shape-shifting ability he had and that James had used it to spy on others and to have fun. One of his forms were that of Jenny Brown that he used to spy with.
The Sorting Had said none of his Marauder friends knew about it. But the fact that Sirius had been flirting with James, his brother in all but blood, was hysterical.
All the adults watched as ‘the boy who lived’ tried to run out of the room laughing only to fall on the floor giggling like crazy.
“Is he alright?” Molly asked worried.
Albus waved his wand. “He is perfectly fine. I see some residue dark magic that is fading and vanishing real fast from him.” He frowned. “His magical core might be removing the dark magic from his body. Dark magic is sensitive to all forms of positive emotion. So to remove the dark magic from his body, his own magical core is forcing the boy to have fun,” Albus Dumbledore theorized. Dark magic was sensitive to positive emotions so it made sense.
“Oh Merlin… you’re killing me,” Harry said as he started to laugh at the stupid theory Albus had offered and people actually consider him to be smart. U known to him his own magical core took the advice and made everything more funny to him.
Xander grinned. “He sure looks like he is having fun.” Inside it clicked, well it clicked the wrong way. Now he believed to know why Harry called himself Jade Brown, he had taken the name after one of Lilies friends.
Hermione wondered. “Perhaps we should write a letter to Jenny Brown. If she was a friend of Lilly, just image the stories she could share with Harry.”
Sirius nodded. “And I get a chance to see her again.”
On the floor Harry was crying from laughter.
Remus nodded. “What Mr. Dumbledore said is true. Positive emotions do drive away dark magic. This sounds like a natural defense of Harry, a real fun way,” he finished smiling.
Molly’s lips started to twitched. “Let’s get him up, if he is able to sit straight.”
Arthur nodded as he helped her. “You do now we can never ever tell the twins about this.”
“Why not?” Molly wondered, seeing the hidden joke in Arthur’s eyes.
“If they find out that anything ‘You know who’ has created or done has made Harry or anybody laugh as much as this… Just image the jealousy they would feel.”
All who knew the twins had to laugh at that.
Xander nodded. The future looked challenging again. The he took out a letter he had gotten just the day before.
Hi kid, if you read this, then my attempt to make sure Cygnus would never escape me has succeeded. I’m dead and future worm food, growing daisies, experiencing hell first hand and going on the next great adventure.
I think you understand me. I’m dead. Halleluiah!
Well I’m not much for writing, thinking or dancing, so I write short and neat. Take care of yourself Xander. The short time we spend together has been great and you have become like a son to me. And as much as I love my daughters, they drive me crazy. I love you son. Now before you go and get all crying and weeping remember I also removed Cygnus from the world. And I know firsthand that Cygnus liked nothing better to do then to kill all that I care about and torture them to death. Because we shared the same body and perhaps even the same soul we both died.
Don’t grieve for me but remember the time we had together.
PS: If there is a heaven that accepts a fake soul or a half human soul, whatever I’m. I’ll be watching over you from above. If not, I’ll be burning in hell. Bring the hotdogs.
Date March 4
Charlie was dead. One of the people he knew could give him good if somewhat crazy advice was dead. And his letter? Well, in Charlie defense… he was crazy.
The emotions Xander felt were mixed. He loved Charlie, but he also learned from seeing Charlie’s memories exactly what type of person Cygnus had been. And no one deserved to burn in hell more than Cygnus. Just like Charlie deserved his place in paradise.