Disclaimer – Harry Potter and the characters associated with him is property of JK Rowling.
Note - thank you all for the wonderful comments you left me regarding the wedding. I was a bit nervous about writing it. Thank you for making me feel better with your wonderful remarks.
Chapter 9 – Hermione's Discovery
As the students and staff settled down after the weddings, things at Hogwarts seemed to return to normal. The Easter Holiday ended and classes resumed. The fifth and seventh year students were feeling the pressures of the approaching exams. More than one student ended up in front of Madam Pomfrey to get potions to calm their nerves. The staff was going through their routines as usual, helping students who needed it and pushing them harder than ever to get their work done. Harry was interested in a few students in seventh year. Draco would be graduating this year and Harry wanted him to do well. Hannah, Neville, Seamus, Blaise and quite a few of the SFG and DA were graduating this year as well. Harry wanted them all to do extremely well in their grades as quite a few were offered to further their training to be Aurors. Their excellent performances during the attacks had secured them a spot in the training classes. Many would not need the full four years, as Harry and the other founders of the DA had taught so many more than most Aurors knew. Harry was always around the castle helping out anywhere he was needed. Many of the teachers as well as the student body were grateful for this assistance. Hermione was doing better as she no longer had to worry about misbehaving students. Those that thought about it just had to remember what was being done to Terry Boot. When they did, they no longer felt the need to disrupt class in Charms. Hermione was flourishing as a teacher. It was wonderful to see her doing so well. Teaching was what Hermione was meant to do. She never passed up a chance to sit and study and learn new things. She was always going to the bookstores to see what new books they had out. She kept up in her other courses so that if there was a need she could assist another professor in their classes. Ron was working hard as well. He knew that there were a few teachers retiring this year, and he wanted to be included in those that were eligible to fill in those positions. Ginny and Luna were still doing well in their studies. Of course they were in sixth year and were not feeling the stress like they had the previous year. However, Harry wanted them to do well all the same. They would be the ones he would have in charge of the new students for the DA and SFG. Harry sat at his desk and thought briefly about the future.
As it was late that evening he was sitting in his office with Draco and Hermione and things were as usual. Draco had become such a good friend that not very many cared that he was Slytherin. Also many did not care that he used to be such an arrogant prat. He was a great person to hang around with and Harry was grateful for that friendship. Severus and Minerva were with Harry and the others this evening. They were going over the upcoming summer.
"Draco," said Harry. "Are you sure you don't want to return to Malfoy Manor? It is your home after all."
"No Harry," he replied. "I will stay here with you at the castle. In fact I spoke with a real estate agent the other day. I am selling the manor. I will be taking up your offer of staying permanently here in the castle. I am sure that after I graduate my talents will come in handy around here somewhere."
"My offer stands true Draco," said Harry. "You will not have to leave so long as I am alive and Head Master of this school."
"Thanks Harry," he replied. "That means a lot to me."
Harry smiled at Draco and turned to Hermione.
"What about you 'Mione?" he asked. "Are you staying here or going home to be with your parents for the summer?"
"I will be going home for a few weeks at the beginning of summer," she said. "I will be coming back here though, after a few weeks. There is so much here for me to do and I want to make sure that I have enough time to get caught up on my studies and reading and such."
"Hermione you read too much," said Harry.
Severus and Minerva chuckled at this. Hermione blushed slightly but decided not to comment.
"Most of the staff will be heading out for the summer Harry," stated Severus. "I will remain here at the castle however. Minerva and Pomona will be going home as well as Professors Sinistra and Vector. Sybil will remain in her tower as she usually does. Hagrid will remain here. Remus wishes to go home permanently. He says he would like to spend more time with his wife."
"Yeah," said Harry. "I figured as much. I know that Tonks misses him a lot when he is here at school. So I guess we will have to go with the plan I had thought about earlier in the year."
"What plan was that Harry?" asked Minerva.
"Well, we can have Draco take over as potions professor and Severus can take over DADA," said Harry. "Hermione is doing well enough with charms. And you are a part of the wood work Minerva."
"Gee thanks," said Minerva. "I appreciate your innuendo about my age."
"I was not referring to your age," said Harry in a shocked voice. "I would never do something like that."
That's when Harry saw the tell tale sign of humor going around her eyes and knew that she had just fooled him with a well placed joke. Grinning at her, he stuck his tongue out at her and made to shift the conversation to a different subject.
"Now that is mature of the Head Master of the school," interjected Minerva with a laugh.
"Hmph," said Harry. "Maturity does seem to come and go with some of the senior citizens of this castle."
The rest of the group started laughing heartily at the banter between them. At last Harry and Minerva couldn't resist and joined in. Even some of the portraits started laughing with them. All present loved the camaraderie that existed between them. It was like having a family here at school. A family that everyone knew Harry valued more than all the gold in his vault. Severus and Minerva were very pleased with the way Harry was handling the school. He ran it with the efficiency that any other Head Master did in the past. The fact that he did not hesitate to ask for help when he needed it made him all the more endearing to the rest of the staff. Harry was not afraid to admit when he made a mistake and listened with his fullest attention when advice was offered to him. The maturity of Harry made the rest of the staff happy. His age was no longer a concern for many of the staff. For the one or two that still felt he was a bit young to be Head Master wisely kept it to themselves. After all, Harry had saved them and this school many times over his 6 years of attending. No one forgot Harry saving the Sorcerer's Stone and battling the Dark Lord in his first year. Nor did they forget him discovering and killing the basilisk, and facing the Dark Lord in his second year, as well as saving the life of Ginny Weasley. Many remembered his triumph in battling the Dementors and saving Sirius in his third year. Of course no one in history would ever forget his outstanding performance in the tri- wizard's tournament. There were those that still got angry when they remembered what he had gone through in his fifth year. Harry also proved himself a worthy teacher the previous year by passing all of his N.E.W.T.S with high marks and then filling in as DADA Professor. Harry had also engineered many battle plans that saved the school from vampires, werewolves, giants, inferi and many other dark creatures. The capture of Fenrin Greyback and Bellatrix Lestrange was the icing on the cake for most. As Head Master, no one had any doubt to Harry's loyalty to the school or its inhabitants. Harry was generous and caring. His concern for the students and staff was admirable even by those that felt he was too young. However age did not always have a part to play in life. Harry had proven himself worthy of and equal to any task set before him.
"How is Terry Boot coming along with his detentions, Minerva?" asked Harry.
"He seems to have accepted his punishment and is not causing any troubles," she replied.
"He is not causing any more problems in Ravenclaw tower either," said Hermione. "He truly seems to realize he went too far and is determined to behave himself. He even went as far as to defend Luna against someone from another house the other day. I was so thrilled I awarded him 20 points."
"Let me guess," said Harry. "You have been sneaking him lessons in charms haven't you?"
Hermione blushed, but nodded.
"Yes I have," she admitted. "I felt rather bad for him. I would like to see him graduate with all his scores and such."
"Well if you want him to come back to class, I will allow it," said Harry. "However, he will still continue to do his detentions with Minerva for the rest of the year in the evenings."
"Thanks Harry," she said. "I am sure he will like that and agree to those conditions."
"Then I will leave it to you then," said Harry.
It was a little after 10:00 when Severus and Draco bade everyone good night and left. Minerva and Hermione were not far behind. Harry sat at his desk and read some of the reports on minor things that needed to be addressed. Harry reached over and picked up the cup of tea that had been placed there beside him by Dobby. By now Winky and Dobby shared a room. Harry had the castle arrange itself for the other two married couples as well. He briefly thought about Remus and wondered what his life would have been like had he been able to be with someone. His interest in Ginny would have been wonderful. However the luck of the draw was not with Harry. There came the summer of his injuries at the hands of his uncle. Then, there was the position as DADA professor. Now he was Head Master of the school. Harry never had a normal childhood. Now all of his duties had taken away his teen age years as well. Harry did not complain. He knew he was marked for a long time. He sighed, shrugged his shoulders, and picked up the next document to read.
The school year was rapidly closing. April ended with a bang and it was time for the quidditch cup to be awarded. For once in many years Ravenclaw won the championship. Harry delighted in handing the cup to Hermione. Minerva, Pomona, and Severus all gave her hearty congratulations. That evening Harry watched as Ravenclaw house had a victory party. Finally around midnight he sent a patronus to them to tell them it was time to end the party and to head to bed. He watched as the students made their way to their dorm rooms. Laughing to himself Harry turned to make his way to his own bed. As he was about to leave he noticed that the dot labeled, Professor Granger, was heading back for his office. Harry waved his hand and had the gargoyle step aside as she approached the stairs. He opened the door for her and she came rushing in.
"Harry!" she exclaimed. "You have to come with me right now. I have found the most amazing thing in my rooms. Come on you have to come right now."
"Ok Hermione," he said. "Just calm down. What have you found?"
"I am not sure yet Harry," she said. "It will not let me touch it. I have already sent word to Remus, Pomona, Severus, and Minerva."
Harry raced after Hermione and came to her suite of rooms. There they met the others and they all entered Hermione's rooms. Hermione led them to a section of her wall that held a shield with the Ravenclaw coat of arms on it. Raising her hand she shifted the shield. A portion of the wall disappeared.
"I was going to move this to another part of the room," she said. "All of a sudden when I shifted the shield this panel opened up. I was so excited that I let the shield go and the panel closed again. I tried again and when I went to reach for what ever that is in it, it would not let me. I think you have to be a descendant of Rowena to be able to remove it."
Hermione held the shield aside for Harry. Harry tentatively reached towards the opening. When his hand entered, he felt a small tingle in his flesh. However, he was able to access the compartment. When he pulled his hand out, he was holding a piece of very old parchment. He quickly cast a spell to see if it contained dark magic. When none showed up, Harry felt relieved. Muttering a preserving spell, Harry carefully opened the scroll of parchment. It was written in a language that Harry was not familiar with.
"That's Latin," said Hermione.
Harry looked over at Hermione and gave her an odd look.
"I studied this in grade school," she said.
"Can you translate it?" he asked.
"I am a little rusty, but I will work on it if you leave it with me," she said. "I could have it for you in a few days."
"Good," he said. "I will leave it to you then. The rest of you check your rooms. Remus, have the house elves start searching the castle for any more of these little surprises. Also have Arabella start searching the portraits tomorrow. I want to know if anyone finds anything else unusual in the castle. Hermione please inform the rest of the staff about what has happened. This way all teachers can assist in the search. Minerva, have Ron, Ginny, Neville, and Luna get the rest of the SFG and the DA to help as well. However we don't want this to interfere with their studies. Severus, tomorrow we will go down to the Chamber of Secrets with Draco and see if we can find anything down there.
The rest of the assembled teachers all gave their nods of affirmation and everyone headed out to get a little bit done while there was a little time. Harry then turned on the spot and apparated back to his rooms. He had a quick conversation with the portraits of the former Head Masters. After he was done he spent a couple of hours giving the Head Masters rooms a thorough search. Harry discovered a few secret compartments. They were all empty. One had an old manual of geneology in it. Harry cast the preserving charm on it and read a few pages. Harry saw many familiar names in it. He could in fact trace his family tree to well past Godric and Rowena. It seemed that Harry had a stronger back ground than even his ancestors knew. He traced his lineage all the way back to Merlin himself. Now he fully understood why this book was hidden. He wondered why Godric or any of the other founders never told him this.
"We did not feel the need to give you more than you were already going through," said a voice behind Harry.
Turning quickly Harry saw the ghostly figures of the four founders standing before him.
"I think you are correct in that," said Harry. "Reading this it says that I am from the oldest blood there is. It traces us back to Merlin's grandparents.
"Correct," said Helga. "You are indeed a rare individual. You blood is traced all the way back to the founding of the British Isles. We only have records of the time of Merlin and just before him. Written records were not available then, as most just passed the information verbally from one to the next. Merlin had the inspiration to start recording his finding and teachings. From there he taught others who had similar gifts. Now we have very few of those old records left. What you hold in your hand is probably the oldest book in history. A good thing that you cast the preserving spell, or else the book would have disintegrated in a matter of hours."
Harry sat at his desk and surveyed his ancestors. He found Rowena looking at him with a thoughtful look on her face.
"How many more secret compartments are in this castle," asked Harry. "We found the one behind the Ravenclaw coat of arms. Hermione will decipher the script and tell me what that scroll says."
Godric shuffled a bit closer to Harry.
"There are hundreds of those compartments all over the castle," said Godric. "Very few have anything in them, but there are several that have things still in them."
"The new head of Ravenclaw House will find an illuminating discovery in that scroll," said Rowena. "I had hoped that no one would ever find that scroll. However, I passed away before I could destroy it."
"What does it say?" asked Harry.
"I will let Miss Granger explain it to you," said Rowena with a smile. "I would not want to spoil the surprise for her. I hope you understand."
Harry nodded. "Hermione would be disappointed if she could not tell me herself what is written in that scroll. She is one intelligent young lady. If only she were of your blood Rowena. You would be proud of her."
"I already am," she replied.
With that, the founders faded from view. Each gave Harry a bow of respect before fading. Harry sat at his desk and read well into the morning hours. Finally at about 3 in the morning, he put the book down and headed to bed.
Later that day Hermione came into his office. She held two scrolls in her hand. One was the one Harry pulled out of the compartment. The other was one that had Hermione's unmistakable handwriting on it.
"Harry this is the most amazing thing I have ever seen," she said. "This is the spell Rowena Ravenclaw used to make her diadem. It is of her own making. Only an heir of her bloodline can cast this spell. That means Harry, that only you can cast this spell."
What does it say?" asked Harry.
"Sapientia est key ut scienta. Per meus cruor quod mens, tribuo mihi sapientia," intoned Hermione. "It means; Wisdom is the key to knowledge. By my blood and mind grant me wisdom. When you are casting this spell you have to spill three drops of your blood on the diadem. All your wisdom will then be amplified by tenfold. Harry, you are the only one alive that can cast this spell."
"Hermione," Harry said. "How much do you love me?"
"Harry," she said. "What are you talking about? You know I love you a lot. What does this have to do with the scroll?"
"Nothing," said Harry. "However I thought you might like to read this."
Harry pulled the book he found the previous night out of his desk drawer and handed it to her.
The shocked and awed look on her face was priceless to him.
"You can borrow it," he said. "After I have the rest of the group see it as well as Albus."
Hermione nodded and handed him the book back. From there she sat and helped Harry write letters to all that mattered in their lives as an invitation to come to Harry's office and view the book. Hermione handed the letter for Albus to Hedwig who hooted and few out the open window. Harry meanwhile, handed a couple to Apollo to deliver and the rest to Winky and Dobby. They set it up that the meeting would happen at 8:00 this evening.
Together Hermione and Harry made their way to the Great Hall. Smiling they made their way to their seats and started eating their lunch.
The time for the meeting arrived and all those that were requested to be present had accepted and appeared at the castle. They all sat in Harry's office and waited patiently for him to explain what he and Hermione found out. Hermione went first telling the rest of the staff and Albus what she had discovered in the scroll. Harry showed it to Albus and the rest of the staff that had not seen it. Harry then proceeded to show them what he found in the Head Masters office. Albus was astonished at this discovery.
"Indeed it seems the castle is working well with you Harry," he said.
"Godric and the rest of the founders came to me last night and spoke with me," he replied. "It would appear that there are compartments like this everywhere in the castle."
The others nodded. About 30 had been found so far. Nothing of importance had been found in any of them. There were a couple of old goblets that had no magical properties to them, but other than that they were antiques. Harry had the staff continue to search.
"If I am not mistaken there will be something of importance of Helga and Godric somewhere in this castle," said Harry. "I think it is safe that Salazar's secret will be in the Chamber of Secrets. A few of us will go down there tomorrow after class."
"I would like to go as well," said Albus. "That is if you don't mind."
"That is fine with me," said Harry. You, Severus, Draco, and I will be the ones to go. Please bring Fawkes with you. Draco, please bring Artemis. I will also have Dobby and Winky go with us."
With nods all around the group started to disperse. Albus decided to stay the night in the castle. Rose and Toby made up his rooms for him.
The next day dawned bright and Harry and Albus could see certain members of the DA and SFG that were not in class working in different corridors. Arabella could be seen checking behind each portrait in the castle. When she saw Albus and Harry she walked over.
"I have only found four compartments so far," she said. "Nothing was in them."
"Thanks Arabella," said Harry. "Please keep looking."
She nodded and went back where she left off. As the day progressed, Harry could see no reason to put off the trip to the Chamber. He knew that Severus and Draco were impatient to leave. The quartet made their way to Moaning Myrtle's bathroom. Dobby and Winky were already inside cleaning.
"Hey you two," said Harry. "Come on. It is time to go into the chamber. Who knows maybe we can use it for some other purpose one day."
Harry walked over to the sink and hissed in parseltongue. The Chamber door started to open. With a phoenix on their shoulders, Harry and the group made their way down. When they got to the second door, Harry opened it as well. They entered and started searching immediately. Winky went with Severus as he was the only one without a phoenix. Dobby of course followed Harry. Harry went to the statue of Salazar Slytherin. There would be something near here. He was sure of it. He started searching. Finally after an hour of searching and finding nothing, Harry started to admit defeat. He sat on the toe of the statue and a grating sound told him that he set off the trigger to open the compartment. There was a room inside the statue. Sending Dobby to get the others, Harry made his way into the room. Apollo trilled from his shoulder. Harry lit his wand for light. He noticed a candelabra hanging from the ceiling. With a gesture, he lit the candles. Inside were jewels piled high to the ceiling. There was another door that led down into the floor. Harry waited until the rest of the group arrived. Severus opened the door and the group followed Harry down. It seemed that they walked forever when all of a sudden, Harry saw another door. He knew immediately that they had found something important. The door alone vibrated with magical power. Harry walked calmly to the door. Placing his palm on the door, he waited. He blood flowing in his veins acted as they key. When the door opened the rest Harry and the rest of the group went inside. Lying on a stone altar was a body. Upon approaching the body, Harry looked down and gazed into the face. Behind him a ghostly figure appeared. The others stood transfixed as the apparition headed towards Harry. It solidified as it neared him. Harry was not afraid. He felt in his bones that this person was an ancient relative of his.
"I am Merlin'" said the man. "Who are you that has discovered my tomb and disturbed my rest?"
"I am Harry James Potter," he replied. "I am the current Head Master of the Hogwarts. I am also a descendant of yours."
The man reached out and placed both hands one Harry's temples. He looked deep into Harry's eyes. Harry felt his very soul being examined. When the man finished, Harry knew without a doubt that he was something special.
Merlin looked around at the group and nodded.
"Please keep what you have seen here a secret. If the descendants of Morgan Le Fey find me, the very fabric of magic can be torn," said Merlin. "Do not fear that alone, young Harry. For these people standing with you are also relatives. Their blood may not be as pure as yours, but they are none the less, relatives. It will be your burden to keep my body safe. Take this wand Harry. You will have need of it to beat the one called Voldemort."
With that being said, Merlin started to fade. Soon he disappeared all together. The 3 other wizards just stood there in shock. Harry pulled himself together. He looked at Winky and Dobby, they seemed to know what he wished and disappeared with a small pop each. Apollo flew to Severus' shoulder. With a trill all three wizards reacted together and grasped the tail feathers of the phoenix on their shoulder. With a flash of flame, all three disappeared. Harry slowly made his way to the door. He placed his hand on the frame and felt the power infuse the security on the mausoleum. He left the gems where they were. He was the only one that could get here and he had no desire to deal with them anyway. With a quick glance around, Harry picked up a silver scroll case and then he left the room. After touching the toe of Salazar, Harry felt the door seal shut. With a quick turn on the spot, Harry apparated back to his office.
Author's note- I think I will end this chapter here. After all I want material to write the next ten chapters. I hope that you will enjoy what I have written.