Chapter 1 : Chapter 1
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A special meeting of the Order of the Phoenix took place at number 12 Grimmauld Place. All the most prominent members were in attendance. Dumbledore, Molly and Arthur, Remus and Tonks, Snape, Shacklebolt, Moody, McGonagall, Pomfrey and Hestia Jones, gathered in one of the first floor reception rooms. Harry Potter was also in attendance, it was his house after all. Hermione, Ron, Ginny, and the twins had been dismissed to their bedrooms. Fred and George had also been forced to hand over their Extendable Ears. The staircase had been charmed to prevent them sneaking down to listen, even though it was Harry’s stated intention to tell his friends anything of interest. The small talk ceased as Dumbledore opened the meeting.
Having dealt with a few minor administrative matters, he turned to Snape, “Severus, I believe you have something you wish to share with us.”
“Yes, Professor. While the Dark Lord’s primary motive for his desire to kill Mr. Potter, has always been the threat posed to himself as a result of the failure of the killing curse, I believe he now has a secondary reason. For several months now, he has had people within the Ministry doing research into Potter’s family tree. They have confirmed that Potter is descended, through his father, from the third Peverell brother, Ignotus. He is the last of that bloodline. The Peverell and the Gaunt families had a blood feud fiercer than any mafia vendetta. The prospect of ending the Peverell bloodline will, I think, be the icing on the cake, so to speak. This may not be significant in itself, but I think it does add something to the overall picture.”
“I agree, Severus. I…” Harry interrupted the headmaster,
“Great! So now he has two reasons to kill me. It must disappoint him dreadfully that he can only do it once. No wonder I suffer from paranoia.”
“Remember Harry,” said Tonks, “You’re not paranoid if there really is somebody out to get you.” The whole room chuckled and the atmosphere lightened.
“You see Harry, to wizards and witches, bloodlines are important.” Said Arthur,
“You’ve known me long enough to know that I do not subscribe to the mad ‘pure blood’ theories, but even so, I would hate to think that my bloodline would die out.”
“I think you’ve more than your bit to prevent that, Arthur,” Molly smiled, “with my help of course.”
Dumbledore explained, “It works like this, Harry. In a time of crisis you can draw strength and protection from your ancestors. You don’t have to ask for it, it just comes. If you had siblings they can draw the same power and channel it to you. So for example: If Bill Weasley was in mortal danger he could draw such power. He has six siblings each of whom could draw the same power. They could channel it to Bill, making him stronger. Also they could surround him with another force. Their love. If you add Molly and Arthur’s love then he is ten times stronger.”
“You, however, have no parents or siblings, so the power you can draw is limited. I know you have the love of The Weasley’s in abundance. That will help you.” There was silence as Harry considered what he had heard.
“So can Voldemort get the same support from his ancestors?”
“Yes, but like you he has no siblings, so he will only get what he can draw himself. Unlike you, I doubt that he has many people that love him. So he will get little or no help from that quarter.”
“Do you feel this power, how does it manifest itself?” Surprisingly it was Molly who answered.
“It’s hard to say Harry. Don’t ask me how I know, but trust me, when it comes you will know it.” Harry noticed the concern on Arthur’s face and the way he took hold of her hand. There is some unspoken history there, he thought.
The meeting ended and the Order members departed. Dumbledore and McGonagall were the last to leave, but not before accepting an invitation to a roast beef dinner the next day. Harry joined the youngsters upstairs and proceeded, as he had promised, to tell them everything that had been discussed.
The next morning they tucked into a huge bacon and eggs breakfast. Appetites were hearty with, it seemed, one exception. Ginny ate very little and that with no enthusiasm. While Ginny helped Molly to clear up after breakfast, Harry asked Hermione if there was anything wrong with her. Hermione didn’t know but speculated that it could be a simple case of PMT. She wasn’t going to explain it to him again. Twice is enough, she told him.
Ginny spent the rest of the morning in the room she shared with Hermione, only coming downstairs when Dumbledore and McGonagall arrived for lunch. Her mood was brighter and her appetite had improved. During the meal the conversation stayed away from anything to do with Voldemort. They talked of Quidditch, Muggle technology, Ron’s intention to obtain a Muggle driving licence and then get a car. Arthur thought this was a most laudable ambition. The meal finished with a lemon cheesecake.
“An excellent repast, as always Molly.” Declared Dumbledore. “You must come to Hogwarts and allow me to return the favour.”
“Do you cook, Professor?” asked Hermione. Minerva McGonagall smiled,
“He does, Miss Granger, his culinary prowess is legendary. No-one, but no-one, does beans on toast like Albus.” She laughed. Molly served coffee and as she sat down, Ginny spoke,
“Professor, Harry told us what was discussed at the meeting yesterday, could you clarify a couple of points for me?”
“If I can, Ginevra, gladly.”
“Okay thank you. Apparently if Harry was in a crisis, he could, to use a modern word, download protection from his ancestors, and we, because we love him, could all channel power to him. But suppose we were all in mortal danger at the same time. Would we not have to concentrate on defending ourselves?”
“You would indeed. Especially if you were not in close proximity to Harry. However if you were close to him then the powers you receive would combine, actually becoming more than the sum of its parts.”
“Thank you sir, now the other part of my query is this. Suppose that Harry was not the last of the Peverell bloodline?”
“But he is, Ginny.” Hermione said, “I can’t imagine that Voldemort’s researchers would give him information without being certain that it’s correct. That would be far too risky for them.”
“I agree Hermione,” said Ginny, “but there is a simple solution, is there not, to prevent the ending of a bloodline?” The eyes of Albus Dumbledore twinkled,
“I believe there is, Ginevra. I think I see what you are getting at.” Nobody else seemed to. Ron, sounding exasperated said,
“Well, I’m glad you two know, I don’t suppose you would care to enlighten the rest of us?” Ginny stood and walked around the table to stand behind Harry.
Blushing a little, Ginny said, “Gladly Ron, but bear with me for a minute.” She asked Harry to stand and then faced him. “I’m sorry to do this publicly but I have to ask this. Harry, do you love me? I mean are you in love with me?” he felt as thought his tongue were made of concrete.
He looked nervously around the room. “Er… Yes, you know I am.”
“I’m in love with you too, Harry. This is why I am simply going to suggest that you and I have… a baby.” The ensuing silence was deafening. It didn’t last long. The room erupted. Only Harry, Arthur and Dumbledore were silent. Arthur was open mouthed and Dumbledore had a sort of half-smile on his lips.
Molly was outraged, “Don’t be so stupid, Ginny; you are far too young to do anything so ridiculous. So let’s hear no more about it.” now it was Ginny’s turn to be angry,
“Too young! I’ve done the sums Mum, you were only three months or so older than I am now when you conceived Bill. In two months I will be seventeen. How old were you when he was born? So why is it so different for me, Mum?
“No ‘buts’, Mum. You’re not going to change my mind. I think it’s a good idea.”
Dumbledore rose from his seat. “As much as I hate to leave this interesting, not to say fascinating, conversation, there’s something I need to do. I’ll be gone for about an hour.” He walked to the door. He was half way through when he stopped and turned back to face the room. “Miss Granger, would you care to accompany me? You have a talent I could use.” Hermione followed him out and held his arm as they apparated away.
They appeared in a huge building, standing before a large, ornately carved, set of double doors. Before she could ask where they were a disembodied voice said,
Dumbledore replied, “Albus Percival Wulfric Brian of the House of Dumbledore. I am accompanied by Hermione Jean Granger, house unknown.” The doors opened smoothly and silently, and he led Hermione into her personal heaven. As far as the eye could see the place contained books, books and more books, rolled parchments and hieroglyphs carved into wood and stone.
“What is this place, Professor?” She asked in a whisper, scarcely able to breathe.
“Have you heard of the Great Library of Alexandria, Miss Granger?”
“Yes, of course. It was destroyed by the Romans centuries ago. Is… is this it?”
“No, compared to this, Alexandria was a village lending library. Contained in this edifice is the accumulated knowledge of all mankind. It’s all here, everything mankind has ever written down. Were we not in a hurry I would show you some real wonders. The original writings of Galileo, for instance.”
“I thought they were in the Vatican Archives.”
“Those are copies; very good copies, but copies nonetheless.”
The voice spoke again, “Hermione Jean Granger?” She looked at Dumbledore who, with a raised eyebrow, nodded for her to reply.
“I am here.”
“You are welcome, Daughter of Aspartea. You are free to fulfil your needs.” She didn’t know if she was more surprised by the title by which she had been addressed, or by Dumbledore’s reaction. A look of utter astonishment had crossed his face.
“Professor, what does that mean, Daughter of Aspartea.?” A motion of his hand silenced her. He was thinking furiously. Is it possible, is it really possible? Could she be a Proto-Eternal? The voice answered in his head. She is, and so far, most worthy. As are the others. Others? Two names popped into his head. He gasped audibly, prompting Hermione’s concern. He came to himself. The time is near, he thought. It is, came the reply.
“Harry James Potter, of which house is he?” he asked out loud, there was a pause before an answer came.
“Of Myrdeo.” Dumbledore staggered, as though punched, and fell against a stand of books. He shook his head vigorously, as if to clear it. Ashen faced and visibly shaking, he looked at Hermione who was suddenly very afraid of the look in his eyes.
“Come Miss Granger, we have some research to do. I will explain all to you later. Come let us begin.”
They returned to Grimmauld Place an hour later, apparating to the place they had left, outside the door to what Harry referred to as his ‘conference room’. The heated conversation was still going on. Dumbledore listened, Hermione’s mind was elsewhere. Ron was talking the loudest.
“Forget it Harry, you’re not doing that to my sister.” George and Fred agreed. Ginny in no better mood yelled.
“You morons, he wouldn’t be doing it to me, he’d be doing it with me. We’re not talking about rape here. I would appreciate it if you would all myobee.” Seeing Harry’s quizzical look, she explained. “Myobee, Harry, think of it as a phonetic acronym. M Y O B. Mind your own business. There is another one I might be using in a minute, myofbee. I’ll leave you to guess what the F is for.” Dumbledore knocked on the door and entered without waiting for a response, followed closely by Hermione. She resumed her seat, her brain was stumbling around trying to figure out what had just happened to her, and she was unresponsive to her friends.
“Do not question her now. We have too much to do.” His attitude worried the adults; they had never seen him so agitated. “Minerva, Arthur, Molly, it is the time of Inchostia,” he said gravely, “please begin summoning the Order, Minerva please locate Luna Lovegood and bring her here. Don’t forget the clean clothes.” The three adults visibly paled. “Now! Please.” He turned to his students, “All of you upstairs now,” he waved down the protests, “just shower, change into clean, new if you have them, clothes and come back here.” The youngsters started to protest again. “Do as I say! Now! You have no idea of the urgency.” He had no reason for sending Ron and the twins other than he wanted them out of the way. Arthur and Molly were instructing their patronuses, McGonagall disapparated where she sat. Alone in the room Dumbledore sat with his head in his hands. I never expected this, he thought, I really, never expected this. For a millisecond the heart of Albus Dumbledore quailed within him.
On the upper floors the youngsters hastily arranged a schedule for showering. Ginny and Hermione would use the bathroom first followed by Harry, Ron and the twins. Showers were to be of no more than three minutes duration.
A knock came on Harry’s door. “Bathrooms free!” called Hermione. As Harry walked slowly toward the bathroom he passed a half open bedroom door. Ginny’s bedroom door. Clearly visible from behind was a slim naked female, standing in front of a full length mirror, brushing her long red hair. In the reflection she could see Harry’s astonished look. She smiled broadly, winked an eye and waved the door closed with her wand. He walked on in a daze which continued until Ron pounded the bathroom door.
“Time’s up Harry. What’s keeping you?” Harry dressed slowly, unable to shake the vision from his mind. It was the first time he had seen naked female, so he had nothing to make a comparison with but, damn it, to him her backside had looked perfect.
McGonagall arrived back with a bewildered Luna Lovegood. Luna was dispatched upstairs to shower and change. In the large second floor room about twenty of the Oder of the Phoenix had gathered and were arranging the seating. In the kitchen Dumbledore, McGonagall, Arthur and Molly sat talking.
“Are you sure, Albus, really sure? Inchostia, the Final Battle? I’m sorry Albus, I will need some convincing. For a start Luna Lovegood, a Daughter of Aspartea and a Proto-Eternal to boot? That’s hard to believe. Granger, maybe I could believe, but… and anyway, aren’t there are supposed to be three of the Daughters?”
“Minerva, I can hardly believe it myself and had I heard it from any other source I would be as sceptical as you. There was a third name…” he paused, Minerva bristled,
“Come on Albus, stop playing with us, who?”
“I’m not playing, Minerva. The third name is Ginevra Weasley.” Molly and Arthur gasped together,
“Oh no, please Merlin, no.” Molly whispered.
“I’m sorry Molly, but the fact remains that under this roof tonight we have three Daughters of Aspartea and one Son of Myrdeo. All of them Proto-Eternals. All the portents for Inchostia are in place. Molly, please go and bring the four of them here. Arthur, please tell the Order there will be a delay in the meeting. Molly collected Harry, Hermione, Ginny and Luna and delivered them as requested. Then she, Arthur and Minerva joined the other members of the Order, leaving Albus with the four most important people he had ever known, or would ever know.