The Aurors Assemble
A week after his and Ron’s visit to Hogwarts Harry found himself in The Ministry Library doing research into counter-spells.
“There you are!”
Harry looked up from the stack of books that were in front of him at his teacher. Shacklebolt came in and stood across from Harry.
“I’ve been looking for you all morning!”
Harry removed his glasses and rubbed his eyes, “Sorry, I must of lost track of the time.”
“Lost track of the time?” Shacklebolt said with a touch of anger, “I’d say so. We need to be in a meeting of Aurors in five minutes, let’s go!”
Harry closed his book, placed it on the stack and brought the books back up to the librarian. They quickly walked towards the main Auror department and towards the large meeting room in the back.
When they entered Harry saw the room was full. He went and stood with Shacklebolt in the back.
Every Auror in England must be here. He thought
“It’s about time,” a familiar voice hissed.
He turned and saw that Hermione had come over to him, “What’s going on?”
She shook her head, “I don’t know,” she said, “But it must be huge if Kathryn and I were pulled away from Hogwarts.”
All conversations stopped when Leon Filmier, the head of the Aurors, came in. He was man in his mid-forties, in good shape, dark complexion and black hair. He had taken over after Amelia Bones went missing two years ago.
“Thank you all for coming,” he said, “Last night a small group of Aurors discovered the location of You-know-who’s hide-out,” he said without preamble.
There were a few mummers from the assembled group. Hermione looked at Harry’s reaction and saw him just slightly shake his head.
“Now, we have reason to believe that What’s-his-name is still there and we have had the building under constant supervision since that time.”
“Where is he?” a witch asked in the front row.
The buzz of conversations started up again.
Hermione leaned over to Harry and whispered, “Could he be there?”
Harry shook his head, “No, it’s too obvious. Besides Voldemort would know we’re watching places like that.”
“Quiet please,” Filmier ordered, “Now I have spoken with the Minister and he has authorized us to go in and stop him.”
Harry shook his head again.
“I am putting together a plan to attack the manor and finish this.”
Again Harry shook his head. Hermione again leaned close, “Why are you shaking your head.”
“It’s too easy,” Harry whispered, “This isn’t like Voldemort to leave himself open like this.”
Hermione thought for a second, “You’re right, but why don’t they know?”
“They haven’t dealt with him over the last eight years like we have,” Harry replied.
“Now this will be dangerous,” Filmier said, bringing Harry and Hermione back to the meeting, “and I would normally ask for volunteers, but this situation requires all of us. So your assignments will be forthcoming within the hour. Thank you.”
He left the room with a few senior Aurors with him. The conversations were nearly incoherent to the outside listener. The room started filing out slowly and Harry turned to Shacklebolt.
“He’s not there.”
Shacklebolt nodded, “Agreed,” he whispered, “But we can’t just walk into Filmier’s office and say so without any proof.”
“So we just go along with this?” Hermione asked, looking between Harry and Shacklebolt.
Shacklebolt’s mind was working quickly and he finally shrugged, “I don’t see an alternative.”
“Hermione,” Kathryn called out as she approached, “You know three people talking in whispers constitutes a conspiracy.”
Hermione smiled at her supervisor’s joke, “I’m sorry I was…”
Kathryn held up her hand, “No need to apologize, I’ve heard every word. I agree with Mr. Potter here,” she turned to the young man, “Are you positive about your suspicions?”
“Well then this may very well be a trap,” she said, more to herself than to them, “Kingsley’s right, without proof they won’t listen. And I’m sorry to say that the word of Harry Potter won’t be enough to sway them one iota.”
“Settle down please class!”
Ginny stopped whispering to Luna and looked up at McGonagall.
“Now today we will be putting to practice what you have learned in the last two classes,” she speared everyone with a stern look, “So I hope you all are prepared. Before we begin please pass in your papers.”
After a few moments of papers rustling the class settled back and waited.
“Excellent,” McGonagall said, “Now, the Absconditus spell is part of your N.E.W.T. exam and you’ll need to have it mastered. This version of the disillusion spell is more powerful and requires much more concentration. I expect nothing less that perfect and so will the Examiners. Now let’s begin.”
The class stood while McGonagall magically removed the desks.
“Now I have a series of objects that have been magically changed into other objects and only a properly performed Absconditus spell will transform it back to it’s original form.”
She went to her closet and returned levitating a large trunk filled with items. She set it down near her desk and picked up a plain silver pitcher. She placed the pitcher in the center of the room and stepped back.
“Now who would like to volunteer first?” she pointed at Luna, “How about you Miss. Lovegood?”
Luna came forward and stopped several feet from the pitcher, “Explico Absconditus!” she shouted.
The pitcher rattled in its spot for several seconds before it melted and reformed into a bowler hat.
“Very good Miss. Lovegood,” McGonagall said, “That was perfect.”
Luna smiled at McGonagall and returned to her place next to Ginny. McGonagall spent the whole class having the students transform various objects back into their original forms. The class as a whole did very well and McGonagall was pleased.
“That was very good class. Ten points to each house I think for your performance here,” she said to the delight of her students, “Now next class…”
She was interrupted when the door opened and Ginny’s older brother Bill came in. He ignored his younger sibling and wordlessly walked up to McGonagall and handed her a note. She took it read it and quickly folded it up. They whispered for a few moments, but before Bill nodded and left, Ginny distinctly heard the words “attack”, “Voldemort” and “Malfoy”.
“I think we can end early today,” McGonagall said to the surprise of everyone in the class, “Read the next sections in your texts and be prepared to discuss the topic next time. Dismissed.”
The class grabbed their things and quickly left the room. Ginny waited for Luna and they walked towards the library.
“What was that all about?” Luna asked.
Ginny shrugged, “Something about You-know-who.”
Luna stopped, “You don’t think…?”
Ginny’s face went white, “That Harry’s found him?” she finished.
“No,” Ginny said after a few moments, “If that were the case, McGonagall would have left straight away. Not to mention Bill would have been more hurried than he was.”
Luna nodded, “I wonder what’s happening?”
Hermione slammed her hands on the desk in frustration, “This is rubbish!”
Kathryn smiled at her student, “I agree, but hitting my desk won’t change anything.”
Hermione, not in a joking mood, continued right along, “I’ve helped fight against him for the last eight years! Why not include me! Even if he isn’t there!”
“I don’t know,” Kathryn shrugged, “But your friend Mr. Potter wasn’t included either. He didn’t seem overly upset.”
“That’s because Harry knows Voldemort’s not there!” she shouted and started pacing around Kathryn’s office.
Kathryn sat up, “Look will you please calm down and stop shouting. I’m on your side, remember?”
Hermione gave her a look and sat down heavily on the couch, “Sorry.”
“Look if what you’ve told me about Mr. Potter is true, then he won’t necessarily need to face Voldemort, just a powerful wizard…,” she looked back down at the papers and muttered, “or seven.”
Hermione scowled in anger and crossed her arms across her chest, “But we, Harry and I, have more knowledge of Voldemort than anyone who’s going. We’d be a valuable asset.”
“I agree, but Filmier doesn’t,” Kathryn said, “Now just accept that fact and let’s get back to teaching. We’ll still be on guard here.”
Hermione nodded, not mollified one bit. Harry and Shacklebolt had spoken to Filmier before Hermione and Kathryn had left to return to Hogwarts. They waited in Shacklebolt’s office until the two came back, Harry red-faced and angry and Shacklebolt disappointed. Harry had told Filmier that he suspected this to be a trap and Filmier had just ignored him and went to further say that Harry was just a kid and his experience in Auror matters was insufficient.
Shacklebolt had argued that Harry’s experience with and against Voldemort was far beyond any of the most experienced Aurors with the exception of Mad-Eye Moody. Filmier didn’t listen to Shacklebolt either. He still thought Harry to be a little too impulsive, not too mention egotistical and looking for glory.
“Well why don’t we grab some lunch before the attack comes,” Kathryn said bringing Hermione back to the present, “I hate fighting on an empty stomach.”
They walked out of the office and down the stairs. Kathryn noticed her apprentice’s restlessness and chuckled.
“Are you laughing at me?” Hermione asked with a touch of anger.
“Yes,” Kathryn said, “Relax, ok? I know you’re anxious about the attack, but there’s nothing we can do but be prepared here.”
“I’ll try,” Hermione muttered.
“You know, you’re going to be quite a handful to teach aren’t you?”
Hermione smirked, “Harry always thought so.”