Chapter 9 : Muses
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WELCOME BACK AGAIN! I’ve actually had this part of my story planned out before I was even finished writing Harry Gets Even...ah man it’s been too long since I posted, but I couldn’t help it! Gracious...I’m so sorry it took me so long to post again but...urgh...you honestly would not believe the stuff that’s happened with me since I last posted. But thank you to you newcomers to this story–the ones who’ve reviewed since February or so...getting reviews, even a few, helps keep me wanting to write this story–it’s nice to be appreciated and acknowledged. Hope you like this chapter...and haha, you know how this goes...ENJOY!
The Burrow had been barely inhabited all summer, due the Weasleys graciously minding first Madam Adonna’s and then Harry’s well-being following the car wreck. Mrs. Weasley therefore decided the day of Harry’s appointment with Madam Adonna (along with giving Harry more privacy) would be the perfect day to take Ron and Ginny home with her. They would be gone the majority of the day to “get the house ready for company” for when everyone left Privet Drive for good very soon . This sort of amused Harry and not only because Ron was annoyed about it. Harry was just so accustomed to staying at the Burrow, he no longer considered himself on guest status.
This was also the last opportunity for Harry to speak one-on-one with Hermione about the unusual terms Madam Adonna had used in his initial session with her. Hermione acted quite amazed when Harry had asked her out of the blue what Psychromancy was. She immediately asked where he’d heard the word and he reclarified it was briefly mentioned in his first appointment with Madam Adonna. Hermione’s curiosity piqued even higher as Harry further expounded he’d heard it used in a waking vision, when he’d shaken hands with Adonna, and that the Healer appeared to have called Harry himself a Psychromancer.
“Why, what of it?” Harry inquired. “Is it a forbidden or hush-hush subject like Parseltongue or Voldemort?”
“No, it’s nothing like that,” answered Hermione, “it’s just not a very common term. I haven’t read too much on what Psychromancers are, but I do recall, very specifically, that they are not numbered among us living people. They are supernatural, spiritual beings. That’s why I was so surprised when you explained that Madam Adonna had called you a Psychromancer. Whether your vision was real or imagined, it would be extraordinary in any case. That would most likely mean you’d have to be–“
”That I’d have to be dead,” Harry finished intuitively. And again he and Hermione privately mulled over the topic. He could almost see the words “Hogwarts library” running across Hermione’s mind...she was wanting to look this up, and look it up now.
As it had been deemed foolhardy for anyone in the wizard world to travel alone any more, appropriately enough Madam Adonna was accompanied by Tonks upon her arrival for Harry’s appointment.
“If you don’t do something about it, then I will,” the Healer said to her cousin heatedly. “He’s someone who means a lot to you, you can’t just allow the ignoring to continue–ah, hello Mr. Potter,” Adonna switched her conversational focus mid-sentence as Harry carefully opened the front door. “It is most agreeable to see you again.”
“Hello, Madam Adonna,” he replied, “and thanks for making such a distant house call.” He turned to Tonks and said, “Hello to you, too.”
Without even looking at Harry, Tonks replied tersely, “Wotcher, Harry.” She continued to the Healer, “I’ll see you in an hour, then.” Then to both of them the Auror said, “Good day,” spun on her heel, and marched off down the street. Clearly, despite Ministry warnings she had no desire to hang around the Dursley residence while in a row with her elder cousin.
After an imperceptible shake of her head, the Madam walked through the doorway and followed Harry to the lounge.
“I’m gratified that Headmaster Dumbledore was quite right when he told me you are doing remarkably well,” commented the Healer, scrutinising Harry appraisingly.
Smiling, the young man responded, “Much as you like seeing it, I like feeling better a whole lot more. Now having a prolonged convalescence under my belt, I can decisively conclude that being a human slug is not something I’d recommend for anyone.”
“I can certainly see how it would put a damper on one’s social life,” the Healer quipped, easily returning his smile.
“So...” Harry continued, “I suppose I should talk about this, then,” and he moved his parchment sheets of notes off the lamp table next to him. “I’ve had loads of flashbacks and deja vu moments since last we spoke. They really increased after I got these,” Harry now opened the silver case of his sunglasses and put the box on the coffee table in front of Adonna.
“May I?” the Healer inquired, hovering a hand over the sunglasses case.
“Of course,” said the young man, “but I wouldn’t recommend taking–!” he exclaimed.
Madam Adonna had plucked the glasses straight from their box without any trouble at all. She was obviously not experiencing the type of distress anybody else had when having tried touching the specs.
“How–how are you doing that?” Harry asked, astonished.
Now puzzled by his reaction, Adonna glanced at him and replied, “I simply reached in and took them out.”
“But...when anybody else has tried touching them they get burned or shocked. That’s what I’m so surprised.”
“Where did you get these?”
Harry briefly told her the story of how he’d acquired his Lennon sunglasses. Though her outward reaction was mild, Harry could tell she was quite keen on knowing more about his experiences with them. He told her how when he wore them, they allowed him to see a ghosting effect, and what Ginny had referred to as “aural magic.”
“That is quite fascinating,” replied the Healer. “I’ve never heard of an object, magical or otherwise, that allows the wearer to see such things. The ability to see that level of magic is catalogued as being inherent only, meaning it cannot be learned–you must be born with the talent.” She continued to examine the sunglasses.
“Erm, you’re welcome to try them on if you want,” Harry said.
A brief grin flashed across Madam Adonna’s face as she explained, “Oh, I don’t need glasses to see magical auras. I can sense them–feel them, as well as see them. That’s how I know so much about the subject, as it’s part of my empathic healing technique.”
“Oh,” said Harry, now feeling a little foolish at having made his offer. Of course she’d know more about the subject than he and his friends.
The Healer was oblivious to his embarrassment, however, and she turned to him again saying, “You say that when you wear these, you feel as if you’ve seen magical auras before?”
“Oh yes, it’s...it’s become nearly unreal, how I feel sure I’ve experienced the ability before. What’s most annoying of all is that I can’t recall why I feel that way. Sometimes, I’ll have brief flashes of being in other places–seeing other things, people, objects–with aural magic surrounding everything. I don’t know if I’ve simply dreamt it having happened, but every time it happens, I feel certain I’ve experienced it long before I ever got these,” Harry pointed to the silver case, which was now sitting back on the coffee table. “But...but even those experiences...seem as if they’re all tied in together with those nightmares, too. Like they’re all part of this series of dreams. I’ve...I’ve had dreams quite like these before, but...the pain and confusion from them were from well outside my...myself,” he sort of came to a stop, train of thought derailing by recollections of the visions Voldemort had sent him during fifth year.
He shook himself from his reverie, aware that Madam Adonna was politely yet intently observing him. “Sorry,” he mumbled subconsciously,” then he said, “but the night before last, I started having a lot less nightmares,” he told her cheerily. He told her that even though he felt unsure about so much stuff, he was finding it easier to stay more upbeat than before. He explained to her about the dream of his memorial service and the song within it. And Harry further explained how it had all started with the gift of Lupin’s letters to him.
All in all, he spent so much time talking about himself that Harry felt impolite for having monopolised their conversation but the Healer never once interrupted him. Her interstitial commentary was also quite reassuring.
“I’m quite pleased to know you’ve found ways to lift your spirits,” Madam Adonna said. “In fact, you now appear well enough improved for me to give you instruction on further honing your skills as a Metamorphmagus.”
Harry shifted in his seat anticipantly and exclaimed, “Cool!” as his insides did a little leap of joy.
The Healer chuckled at his reaction and said, “It won’t be anything particularly difficult, but I’ll give you a few simple things to try until next we meet up. First, let’s just have you try changing your own eyebrows followed by eye colour. Some people find it easier to switch each eye or brow one at a time; some people can’t help but do both of them simultaneously. You’ll need to discover which method works best for you. The way to do that is to see how your mind best concentrates on the task at hand, whether it be for you to focus on remembering a different eye colour of both a person’s eyes, or just one. One technique that furthers the process for everybody is to make sure to have a specific other person in mind. Say you know somebody with auburn eyebrows–if you envision their eyebrows, your mind is automatically filled with the image and it becomes that much easier for you to morph that shade through to your own eyebrows.”
The Madam sat up a bit straighter and continued, “For example–“ she closed her eyes tight shut and a second later her eyebrows switched to deep red– “I think of my Aunt Fiona whenever I change my hair to this colour,” she explained. “You’re not required to do that, but it certainly helps. And of course, as with any Transfiguration event, absolute concentration is essential.”
Nodding, Harry found himself wondering who on earth it was Tonks thought of those times she changed her hair to hot pink or raving fuschia.
“Now, you give it a go. Choose a person you know, think of their features in vivid detail, let the picture fill your mind, and sort of visualise it happening on your own face. Keep secret what colour you’re going to try and switch your eyes or brows. Just make it significantly different than your own so I may guess what shade you’re trying to manage.” Then Adonna did a hard blink, returning her own eyebrows back to normal.
Harry had a rough go in the beginning, as nothing at all happened in the way of colour-changing with either his eyes or brows. Madam Adonna repeatedly told him almost nobody got it right the first few tries, let alone in the first twenty minutes. What Harry did manage to do, however, was cause his eyebrows to grow outward into fabulous curly-twirly brambles that not only obscured his vision, but even wound up pushing his glasses off his face.
The Healer Adonna maintained all sense of decorum as she stood up and quickly assisted the young man in getting his eyebrows back to usual with her wand.
“Don’t be discouraged,” she said bracingly, “you just seem to have an overdeveloped knack for making your hair grow when you’re frustrated. It’s sort of where your ‘magical sense’ focusses itself when you subconsciously throw in the towel, or think all other avenues have been exhausted. That’s what I believed happened the night of the crash,” she elabourated. “I think you’ve done well enough for now. You just may be suffering from a bit of performance anxiety since I’m here to stare at you in your practise.”
She conjured him a small rectangular mirror with its own leather sheath and said, “Looking in a mirror can be infinitely more helpful, but monopolising the loo to do so can be annoying at best, embarrassing at worst.” She handed the object to Harry saying, “So here you are.”
“Thank you,” he replied sheepishly, accepting the item, seriously doubting just how much a mirror could really help his as-yet disastrous attempts at self-modified transfiguring.
Not long after, Tonks showed up at the front door again, looking much less angry yet still no more willing to hold a conversation with Harry or Hermione, the latter of whom also came to greet the young Auror. Madam Adonna pinched the bridge of her nose as she followed her cousin down the steps across the front walk.
“Will you be meeting me tomorrow morning for court?” she asked Tonks. “I’d be very grateful if you’d accompany me to my 8:30 meeting at the Ministry building. You don’t have to come in the room or anything–I just need a companion.”
After that, Hermione closed the door.
Harry was adamant about going to the Ministry the next morning as a show of support for Madam Adonna. Mr. and Mrs. Weasley shortly tried to dissuade him at first, pointing out that general public was not allowed into Medical Tribunals. But once they saw how determined the young man was, they wisely decided their efforts were wasted.
And so he and Mr. Weasley accompanied each other to the Ministry building. Harry had ( at Hermione’s insistence) packed up his belongings the day before, and everything that needed to be moved from Privet Drive was being methodically transferred over to the Burrow that day.
On the way to Ministry, Mr. Weasley summarised the proceedings of Madam Adonna’s trial. It was to be conducted by five Medical Magistrates, each experts in the field of magical medicine as Madam Adonna. Each offence in the Healer’s case poured over in a special Review Board comprised of the five Magistrates. One of the Magistrates was designated the Principal Mouthpiece for all five of the others, and would therefore do the majority of the speaking with the accused.
Reaching down to the pocket on his dress trousers, Harry fingered one of the Extendable Ears he’d received from Fred and George. We’ll just see who can listen and who can’t, the young wizard thought to himself appraisingly. These little gadgets would more than likely allow Harry to hear everything that went on in the trial room.
Mr. Weasley had to be at the Ministry by 8 a.m. so Harry was early for Adonna’s trial. The wizard guided Harry to a section of rooms on the same floor as the main courtroom Harry had attended last year. The young man was quite glad he could avoid that side of the hallway altogether as Mr. Weasley pulled him across the main hall to a small corridor on the other side.
“Will you be okay here, then?” Mr. Weasley asked Harry. “I need to go now, but you can come find me in my office once you’re finished here. Tell Madam Adonna good luck, right? Cheers.”
Then he walked away, leaving Harry in the narrow corridor, which contained eight doors, four on either side.
The Healer came not long after and looked quite surprised to see Harry there.
“A pleasure seeing you again so soon, Mr. Potter,” she greeted upon seeing him. “Any reason in particular you’re here today? You don’t have a trial too, do you?” asked Adonna, her voice gaining a note of concern.
“No,” Harry replied.. “I overheard you mention to Tonks that you were going o be here this morning for your own trial and sort of, erm, wanted to...be here as a show of support for you.”
The Healer’s face softened as she said humbly, “Why, how kind of you, Mr. Potter. Your being here comes as quite a surprise, yet I must admit I can’t help but think there’s no other person who’s regard I’d rather have more at the moment.” Then she smiled and concluded graciously, “Thank you.”
“You’re quite welcome,” smiled Harry, “and best of luck to you.”
As Madam Adonna opened the door and walked through, Harry glimpsed the Magistrate Bench with five people at the far end of the room. They sat in high straight-backed chairs and looked austerely toward the healer.
“You may be seated,” said the Principal Mouthpiece, gesturing to a solitary chair in the centre of the room. At least it didn’t have chains on it as the one in the main courtroom did. Then the door closed, separating Harry and the Madam.
Harry quickly retrieved the Extendable Ear from his pocket and slipped it under the door. He was rather glad the little hallway was so far removed from the main activity on the ground floor, as he could hear people bustling about the later it got that morning. A few individuals looked questioningly at him, but Harry just refused to meet their eyes and behaved as if he belonged right where he was. Which, Harry concluded to himself, is perfectly true. I have every right to be here. Technically the only thing he didn’t have a right to do was eavesdrop on the trial. He had been concerned that he might get bored just standing and listening, but there was much to listen to.
Much of the trial hearing consisted of the fives Magistrates taking turns grilling Adonna on why she did what she did, what she had been thinking at the time, if indeed the Secrecy mandate had been broken when magic had been performed in front of the Muggles on the Knight Bus and other such things. Most of the charges against Madam Adonna hardly even seemed to apply to her, and several times Harry was indignant with the treatment she was being given. It was as if they regarded her as a malicious criminal rather than a professional just having tried to do her job. However, what got to Harry the most was when the Principal Mouthpiece said disdainfully, “You have shown such blatant mishandling and disregard for the sanctity of the magical and medical communities that it is my belief you should be stripped of your title, barred from the field of medicine entirely, and have your wand snapped.”
Finally, Harry could take no more of the healer’s being castigated by her peers. After quickly gathering his listening device and jamming it back in his pocket, he barged straight into the room, much to the astonishment of its other occupants.
“No! You can’t bar her from practising! It’s not fair, it’s not right!”
The Magistrates all gaped at him for a few seconds before the Principal Mouthpiece regained his composure first and said, “Mr. Potter. Greetings, and to what do we owe the pleasure of your appearance?” His words were inviting, but his tone of voice was patronising and irritated Harry even more.
“I’m here in the name of Madam Adonna’s personal justice, which all five of you seem to have been in the process of grossly mishandling,” he replied coldly, coming to stand next to the healer. She had stood up out of her chair and turned around when Harry had charged through the doorway.
“Now see here, boy–“ began the Magistrate on the far left of the bench.
”Don’t call me ‘boy’,” Harry clipped him off, “all that I’ve been overhearing is nothing but a mockery of a trial. Not once have you allowed this woman to fully defend her position. When she begins to explain herself, you cut her off. Nor have you taken into consideration any of the good her actions have brought about. I, myself, standing here is the most glaring example of all!”
Harry pointed to himself as his voice rose.
“I can appreciate your position, Mr. Potter,” the Principal Mouthpiece began less patiently, “but you cannot possibly understand the subtleties of what it is to be a medical professional, or the law thereof. You are only a teenager.”
Madam Adonna sent Harry a look that was grateful, concerned, and exasperated all at once. She briefly touched his arm as a signal that he should go, but instead of taking the hint he turned and gave a lopsided grin just for her before turning back to the Bench. The feeling of deja vu returned full force, yet Harry used it as strength and proof that he was doing the right thing.
“If you truly understood my position, you would know that just because I am young doesn’t mean I’m incapable of grasping things. You are right about one thing, however–I can’t know what it’s like to go about everyday, helping and curing people in the ways that you all are dedicated and trained to do. And so Madam Adonna did with me. She came across an impossible situation and made the best of it. Yes, Muggles saw the Knight Bus...but that had nothing to do with her. I Summoned it with my wand. Yes, she did magic in front of them but they didn’t see it or recognise it as such. She handled the situation with such professionalism that not one Muggle had to have the Ministry modify their memory. When was the last time the Ministry itself managed to carry out and operation or concentrated action without memory modification?” Harry paused to let his question sink in, expecting some more interruptions from the Magistrates, but none came. The healer was looking at him in sheer astonishment.
“Madam Adonna hadn’t known the extent of my injuries since I shouldn’t have been walking and talking with the ones I’d had. Again, how was she to know? She couldn’t do a proper assessment, nor did she have the equipment she needed for such a situation. So she faced a true dilemma: to let me die due to injuries received, or to take a gamble by performing the Gemini Stasis Charm. As I’ve said, I don’t understand what it means to save lives everyday. But I do know what it means when a split-second decision made on my part means the difference between positive or negative; when everything hinges on a life or death decision. I lost my own godfather because of something like that,” tears sprang to the surface as Harry explained this to the now-silent Magistrates, but he bit back on the sudden wave of grief and continued.
“Yes, Madam Adonna broke the law–that is not in dispute. What should be in dispute is the law itself. Does it even apply to this situation presented? I say not in this case. The healer had a hidden skill, one that allowed her to save me–I stand here before you now because she upheld her oath as a medical professional, to do all she could to prevent harm. Therefore, had she followed the current law, I would unquestionably be dead. You can’t reward that by revoking her license. It wouldn’t be right, and you all know it. Put yourself in her place for once; now put yourself in mine. Wouldn’t the greater crime, by far, have been doing nothing?”
The Magistrates all began glancing at one another, shifting uncomfortably in their seats.
“I apologise for barging in like this,” Harry went on, “but surely you can see why I had to. Just think about what I’ve said. Thank you.” He turned around to walk out the way he came when Madam Adonna reached out a hand, touched his shoulder, and she gazed into his eyes while saying, “Thank you so much, Mr. Potter. That was most amazing.”
“Anytime,” smiled Harry as he returned the gesture and walked out the door.
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