A/N: I've recently become very interested in Remus/Tonks stories (easily my new favorite HP couple) and the tragedy of how little Teddy never got the chance to know them. Though I think JKR was brilliant in the way she made her story come full circle by introducing another young orphan from the Second Wizarding World, I couldn't help wishing that Teddy had the opportunity to meet his parents.
There are many brilliant time travel fanfictions (I can recommend a few, if anyone wants), but I was having trouble finding many that completely concentrated on Teddy. While the entire Next Generation getting sucked into the past is certainly amusing (I don't think any of us are able to suppress a grin at the image of young Ron and Hermione discovering that they eventually marry and parent two children), I personally feel that so many Weasley grandchildren running around has the potential to overshadow poor Teddy's situation. After all, at least James II, Albus, Lily II, Rose, Hugo, Fred II, and the rest know their parents in their own time. It's Teddy's role in the time travel stories that I've always found most interesting of all.
So, the muses called, and I started getting to work on this. I must admit that it wasn't a completely welcome plot bunny, as I'm also working on another huge (non-HP) project, but when it became clear that Teddy wasn't getting out of my head, I decided to sit down and write it. This prologue is slower than the rest of the story, but I promise that the rest of the story follows characters you know.
Disclaimer: Anything you recognize here, including Lisa Turpin, Dennis Creevey, Voldemort, and the Department of Mysteries, does not belong to me. I am merely using JKR's playground, and she owns everything.
3 Months Earlier...
Lisa Turpin, a proud Unspeakable who worked in the Time Room, held up the Department of Mystery’s newest invention. The hands of the watch glittered in the Time Room’s magnificent light.
“How are we going to test this?” Lisa said, always the logical Ravenclaw. “Anything could go wrong. We could end up in a different time with no way of getting back at all.”
Her co-worker Edward Thames, who had been a Hufflepuff during his time at Hogwarts, shrugged. “It will be difficult,” he admitted, looking at the invention, “but we’ll have to try it out. I don’t think we have another choice.”
Lisa frowned in thought. “I suppose we can always start by going back in a shorter period of time, before increasing to longer distances. At least that way, if we get stuck, we’ll at least know the time frame we’re dealing with.”
“You’ll figure it out, Turpin,” Edward said. “You always do.”
“We need a name for it,” Lisa said suddenly, her practical side once again getting the better of her. “I know we aren’t planning on releasing it to the public anytime soon, but we’ll need a name when we do.”
“Well, by all technical purposes, it still is a Time Turner,” said Edward, referring to how turning the back dials of the watch was what made the contraption work. “It just isn’t an hour glass one, in the same people are used to.”
“That’s true,” Lisa said. “Still, I highly doubt we can just call it a Time Turner. That would just confuse people.”
Inspiration seemed to strike Edward, as his hazel eyes lit up. “What if,” he said slowly, “we simply called it the Time Turner 2.0?”
“The Time Turner 2.0?” said Lisa. “I’m afraid I don’t understand.”
“It’s a muggle thing,” Edward explained. Edward was a muggleborn, and he often had to explain his unique way of thinking to his peers. “Rather than getting creative with names, they simply add to the first one: an iPhone 4s or a Macbook Pro. The Web 2.0 is another one.” No doubt seeing Lisa's confusion, Edward sighed. “Never mind. The point is, by calling it the Time Turner 2.0, we’ll be honouring the old Time Turner as well as this one. We’ll be showing consumers that this device is like a Time Turner, but improved upon. We can change the name later, but I thought it would be good for now.”
“Well,” Lisa said, “I don’t have any other ideas.”
They stared at the newly dubbed Time Turner 2.0 one last time. It was hard to believe that such a tiny device had so much power.
"Do you think that we're doing the wrong thing by playing around with time?" Lisa asked. Being such a prominent Unspeakable in the Time Room, this wasn't the first time the thought had occurred to her. "Things happen the way they do for a reason. Time is constant; it isn't meant to be changed. We could be in serious trouble if anything went wrong."
Edward shot her a look. "I don't believe what I'm hearing. Lisa Turpin, the Time Room's most respected Unspeakable, doubting her inventions?"
"I'm just saying that one needs to be logical," Lisa retorted. "I'm proud of what I've accomplished, but sometimes, this kind of knowledge does come with a price. You know how difficult it was for poor Dennis when he came here and learned that there was no way his brother could ever come back. Sometimes, I still worry about the boy."
Edward touched Lisa on the shoulder with uncharacteristic gentleness. "That was different, Turpin. Creevey was a mere boy when he came here, looking for answers. If this thing ever gets on the market, we'll be careful about who's allowed to use it. People like Creevey and ex-Death Eaters won't be allowed. "
"That's not just what I mean," Lisa said quietly. "No matter who you are, knowledge of the past can come at a terrible price."
Edward frowned at her, but Lisa was speaking from personal experience. She had had to deal with her own share of burdens from witches and wizards who found out she had been in Harry Potter's year. They'd asked if she'd been part of Dumbledore's Army and had almost seemed to expect that she had fought beside him. As many witches and wizards had commented, "With your brains, you must have."
The truth, however, was that Lisa had been just as ambitious and self-centered as any Slytherin. She hadn't joined the D.A. or fought besides her classmates, because she'd been too afraid of ruining her own dreams of conquering the world. She had been a gifted witch, sorted into Ravenclaw for a reason, and she had been so focused with earning good grades than she hadn't paid proper attention to the way her world crumpled around her.
She regretted it now. Seeing little Dennis Creevey had woken her up to her own selfish nature. Though she'd taken a vow as an Unspeakable to not talk about anything she saw inside the Department of Mysteries, she'd found herself explaining to him just why it was impossible to bring anyone back from the death. To her surprise, however, her boss hadn't fired her for her discrepancy. He'd simply suggested that she not do it again and that the next time someone had similar questions, she refer them to the head of the Death Chamber or himself.
She knew changing the past was illegal. It went against every value she had as an Unspeakable, and she cringed at the possibility of a former Death Eater using one of her Time Turners to bring back You-Know-Who. Still, despite these convictions, she couldn't help thinking of the others who had lost people during the war. It would be nice if her Time Turner could somehow provide someone with the answers she hadn't been able to find.
Lisa shook this thought aside. It was ridiculous. It would be a long, long time before the general public found out about the Time Turner, and even then, strict regulations would be followed to ensure that the Time Turner wouldn't fall into the wrong hands. Aside from very special cases, traveling more than a few hours into time probably wouldn't even be allowed.
Still, as she had hinted to Edward, Lisa already knew all about answers. If she were to travel into the past and look at her Hogwarts self, she would see a selfish girl, so focused on her own needs that she was blind to everything else. Some things were better left in the past. She didn't want anyone else faced with a similar situation.
She tore herself from her own thoughts and looked straight at Edward. "You're right," Lisa said. "I'm just being silly. It was a wonderful invention, and I'm so proud to have contributed to it."
Edward's face broke into a relieved grin. "Now there's the Turpin I know and love. What do you say we leave this for today and come back to it tomorrow?"
Lisa nodded. "Sounds good. I'll be out in a few minutes."
"All right. Just don't take too long. You know what happens when you're sleepy on the job."
Left alone, she gazed again at the tiny device. She could still hardly believe that all of her hard work had pulled off and that she had finally achieved what she'd been working for her entire life.
"You have power, little thing," she said, squeezing the Time Turner in her hand. "I just hope you don't let anyone abuse you."
She placed it back in the display case. Though she knew it was only a trick of the light, the Time Turner 2.0 seemed to glow even brighter than before. The tiny watch-like device was definitely powerful. She only hoped that the next person to use it would be prepared for the consequences.