J K Rowling owns all the rights to the books and the amazing characters she created. I write only to satisfy my imagination and use my creativity and make no money from my writings.
NOTE: I apologize for not updating or writing anything for a while but, as usual, "life happened" and Peeves went nuts, my e-mail was going crazy, I was sick with the usual malady and thus had writer's block. Then I injured my hand and a finger got badly infected so physical writing became difficult. Thanks to all of those who wished me well and read my stuff. I will try to update more.
Chapter 11 – The Storm
After the punishments were given out and finished, things quieted down a bit. Even the Weasley Twins were on their best behavior and the table manners of everybody quickly and greatly improved. No one asked Hermione or Draco what they had done to merit the punishments they had received (gossip always travels fast) and even after Draco's weeks of silence were over, he only talked when necessary such as answering a question in classes.
Most unnerving of all was Hermione Granger's silence – no one expected that – and as the Twins opinioned "If we were back in Britain, such a thing as Hermione Granger NOT talking, or even raising her hand to ask or answer a question, would probably make the front page of the Daily Prophet."
Most students and even some of the staff were walking on the proverbial eggshells. The students, due to the punishments/type of detentions handed out and the complete turnaround of Granger's and Malfoy's personalities and behavior. The teachers hadn't been privy to the article which caused Sal to explode in anger, except maybe Snape who was saying nothing, knowing only that something concerning the Hogwarts vaults had happened, as well as the disappearance of the Professor and the teacher known only as Owlet.
When Draco's two weeks of silence were up, his House mates descended upon him with questions. To their shock, his only answer was "Ask one of the teachers if you have to know."
"But Draco, even the teachers don't know what was in the newspaper that caused "Sal" to explode. We can't get any answers so you are our only hope."
He stared at her for a moment before replying "I don't know what was in the newspaper, and I lowered myself to associate with Granger to find out. The only thing we found out was to OBEY the teachers and most especially the Headmaster and not want to get a detention ever again due to certain…threats…made." With that said he left the common room and went for a stroll – alone.
Of course, his curiosity was still strong, but he wouldn't try to find out again. It was probably something terrible and even Snape had warned him with a well-worn saying "Remember, curiosity KILLED THE CAT and it will also KILL A SNAKE without hesitation. Even I don't know many things which I would kill to know, but I must obey or suffer consequences and I DON'T want to find out exactly what the Headmaster is capable of doing."
So with Snape's warning, Draco did keep his mouth shut – except when forced to in class – and mostly kept to himself. Of course, this behavior was driving Pansy and the other Slytherins crazy because they KNEW something really bad had happened due to Draco's silence and Granger actually keeping quiet and her head down.
Since she couldn't use the library for an entire month, she scoured her textbooks to do her school work and utilized the many personal books in the private library she had in her trunk. Being Hermione Granger, her grades were still her top priority and she feared falling behind. But such things never change, including Ron Weasley asking to look at her homework. However, Harry and even Neville didn't ask for help or to check their work and they seemed to be doing very well in classes.
Harry and Neville were basically ignoring Ron to do their own studying and work. There was no playing chess or exploding snap or the endless talking about Quidditch. When Ron complained, Harry informed him that now his school work and studying came first and he didn't have time for frivolous things.
"Bloody hell mate – are you turning into Hermione?" Ron teasingly asked.
"No, it is just that thinking over the previous four years of my education, I have not applied myself to my studies for many of the same reasons the Dursleys forced on me. I couldn't do better than Dudley, who is definitely not the brightest candle in the chandelier, and would be punished severely if I did. I learned my school work but couldn't show my intelligence unless I wanted a beating or starving more than I already was."
"Oh come off it mate" Ron said totally ignoring (as usual) what Harry wanted to do. "You can find some time to get beaten at chess as all work and no play makes Harry a dull boy turning into Hermione." Ron smiled broadly at his "witticism" and actually grabbed Harry's arm and started to drag him towards the chess board.
Harry threw him off his arm so hard and fast, that Ron nearly fell over. "I said NO Ronald. I know you don't know the meaning of many words but even you should know what NO means."
Ron's response was to turned red and then lash out at Harry. A verbal fight broke out showing every sign of turning towards the physical when Harry turned away and started to leave the common room. Naturally Ron had to throw oil on the fire and yelled out "DON'T YOU DARE TURN YOUR BACK ON ME. I AM THE ONLY FRIEND YOU HAVE - Hermione doesn't count since she is a girl – and without me, you would be a pariah."
The common room was so silent you could hear a pin drop. Harry slowly turned to Ron only to see a smug smirk on his face thinking that he had scared Harry and the git was going to give in to his commands. Instead Harry wandlessly and silently caused Ron's wand to fly into his hands before walking over to Ron and punching him in the jaw. That action of a silent casting without a wand should have been enough to warn the git not to mess with Harry, but it didn't.
"You coward" Ron spat out. "How dare you take my wand and then attack me."
"Because if I didn't take your wand, once my back was turned you would hex me, wouldn't you." Ron couldn't say he wouldn't, if only because he would, but he couldn't admit that in front of everybody, so instead it was back to the verbal attack."
"You are a bloody COWARD" Ron yelled "You wouldn't DARE fight ME in a real duel since you are a weakling, a poor excuse for a wizard, aren't as smart or powerful as I am and I KNOW YOU DID PUT YOUR NAME IN THE GOBLET."
"Weasley, you are an idiot" was Harry's reply.
"Oh yeah, well prove it…."
"Prove that you are an idiot."
Ron just got redder and yelled "Duel me you fraidy-cat or the whole world will know that you are a scaredy-cat, a quitter, a weakling and a chicken. You are a disgrace not only to wizardkind but to the House of Potter and you definitely don't deserve all of the money, property and riches tucked away in the Potter vaults."
"You mean the vaults that Dumbles didn't want me to know about? He couldn't access the Potter vaults but did raid my trust fund to bribe the Dursleys and pay you and your Mum the 30 pieces of silver to control me."
"We got more than 30 sickles" Ron shouted out without thinking what he was saying, much to the shock of several people. However, before he could put his foot further down his throat, Fred silenced and stunned his stupid brother and then tried to apologize to Harry. But Harry said nothing and just threw Ron's wand at Fred and left the common room. Neville followed after he gathered up both of their work and left to find Harry as their Charms assignment was due tomorrow.
Fred didn't revive Ron, until it was time for supper. He knew Ron would be furious if he missed a meal and would probably take it out on Harry and get into more trouble. As food usually pacified Ron, hopefully it would take his mind off of the spat. Fred and George had already decided to stun the fool if he dared to attack Harry again.
Harry and Neville were already sitting at the table enjoying the fried chicken, mashed potatoes with gravy, various greens and cranberry sauce. Sal had fallen in love with certain foods of the future, especially things that weren't available in his time such as potatoes and cranberries. He was in a very happy mood and was actually socially chatting with Snape – between bites of the fried chicken – when Fred, George and Ron arrived.
Although the Twins had threatened him to behave himself or else, as soon as Ron walked into the great hall and saw Harry calmly eating dinner and engaging in conversation with Parvati and Lavender, something inside him just snapped. Apparently, Harry was not only happy, was getting good grades without Hermione's help and was making friends not only within his House but a few of the other Houses. Most of these new friends seemed to be girls and Neville was sharing in the good fortune.
The first sign of trouble was Ron stopping as his brothers went to the table, and his ears going scarlet. The second sign was that he wasn't heading over to the food, especially since he also liked fried chicken and its smell was intoxicating. The third and most dangerous sign was when he quickly drew his wand and without a thought of either the warning of the Twins or the consequences of what he was about to do, he cast a lethal spell directly at Harry.
The only thing that saved Harry's life was Dean asking Harry to pass down the cranberry sauce and Harry moved a bit to do the pass so that Ron's curse hit Harry's right shoulder and arm before traveling over to Parvati and clipping her left shoulder, arm and part of her left side.
Harry's reflexes took control and he dropped and dodged for a further attack as his wand slide out of his new wand holster, promptly falling out of his injured hand, while poor Parvati screamed and fell with blood pouring out of her left side.
Complete and utter cretin that he was, Ron started to fire another curse when the great hall shook violently, causing panic but also giving time for people to get out their wands and stun that damned fool. Fortunately for Ron, he was only hit by two stunners, courtesy of his brothers.
As one of the Founders and builders of Hogwarts, Sal had caused the school to shake and to give time for others to take down that fool. Pomfrey, Snape, Flitwick and Sal practically zoomed over to the scene to give aid to the two victims, closely followed by Padma. The other teachers were trying to restore order and calm down the students.
Parvati was in a very bad condition, was immediately placed in stasis to freeze the injuries as was Harry. They were then taken to the Infirmary for treatment by Pomfrey, Snape, Arwen (who had some medical training) followed by a tearful Padma.
However, Salazar Slytherin was beyond furious and the great hall shook once again as he summoned his personal elf and asked for Veritaserum to be brought and that the meal would be put on hold while a trial was held. Sal never wasted time and he would immediately see justice done. He summoned a table and chairs for him and the other judges to sit at, while a wooden post was brought into view for Ronald Bilius Weasley to be tied too and revived for trial. Within three minutes everything was ready and the court case began.
As the students and remaining teachers looked on from their seats at the tables, not even the sound of eating was heard if only because the food disappeared for the duration. Several fools were upset but not even Crabbe or Goyle made a complaint as they knew the food would come back after the "entertainment" was finished. Nothing made the day for a Slytherin than seeing a Gryffindor in trouble and likely to be punished – severely. Crabbe, Goyle and many others would not be disappointed even though the trial lasted only about 20-30 minutes (no one was timing it) and the food returned after the prisoner was sentenced.
"Why did you attack Harry Potter and as a consequence, Parvati Patil?" Sal asked. The power he was radiating as well as his physical presence was enough to make even Voldemort cower, and Ginny and the Twins feared for Ron's very life.
At first, Ron didn't answer as he had been stunned and when revived was tied to a post with Sal and two other teachers sitting at a new table in the back of the hall, so the first thing he said was "What the bloody hell is going on here? Where's the food and why am I tied to a bloody post?"
"Because you tried to kill Harry Potter and severely injured Parvati Patel."
"Oh that. Are either of them dead?"
"That isn't important at the moment" Sal snarled out "What is important is WHY DID YOU CAST A POTENTIALLY LETHAL SPELL AT HARRY POTTER?"
One could see Ron thinking about how to answer and what was the best excuse to use to get out of trouble as it was only now that he realized what he had almost done and in front of the entire school. As he was taking too long in Sal's opinion, Sal ordered Flitwick to administer the Veritaserum. Once that was done, Sal asked again and despite trying to fight off the effects of the potion, Ron had for once been compelled to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
He began by stating "The git deserved it. He has money, fame and gets everything, while I had to put up with him at Dumbledore's request to keep him on the side of the Light. With all his money, you would think he would give his best mate some nice presents such as a decent broom, some good clothes, not to mention a respectable set of dress robes or two, and share the girls he couldn't have since he was to marry Ginny."
Ron then began to ramble on about how babysitting Potter had cramped his style and prevented him from showing the world just how awesome and powerful Ron was, all of the friends he should have made if he didn't have to chase them off so Potter wouldn't have any friends but him and the Mudblood, and that Ron should be the official leader of Gryffindor, being a Pure-blood and a truly awesome wizard, but had to take second place to the Half-blood git because "He wouldn't know how to use his power even if Dumbles allowed it. He's such a stupid, worthless, untalented, inadequate excuse for a wizard and can only catch the snitch because he has always had the latest and best broom on the market."
Ron continued trashing Harry, while trying to impress the assembly with how great Ron was, taking credit for the success of most of their adventures and threw in a few (okay more than a few) digs and insults at Granger "Who he was forced to put up with but was just a bushy-haired, nosey, aggravating know-it-all who didn't know her place and only 'helped' him with his homework instead of doing it for him" and worst of all "Wouldn't do any proper services for him like a Mudblood should be doing for a Pure-blood."
Neville, Dean and Seamus had to physically restrain Hermione from hexing the hell out of the idiot as she was in enough trouble. She would thank them later, but also bide her time to really, really get that #$*(#(#&&& bastard good when he least expected it. Actually, she wouldn't, due to the verdict rendered.
Since Ron had basically ruined himself (NOTE: sometimes telling the truth will get you in more trouble than lying) all that was left was for the judges to make a decision. They whispered among themselves for a bit and then Sal asked "Do you regret cursing Harry Potter as well as hurting an innocent girl?"
"I wouldn't exactly call her innocent as she is nothing more than a gossip and she has been badmouthing me ever since I ignored her sister at the Yule Ball. Besides, blame Potter for moving as she wouldn't have been hurt if he had stayed still."
Ginny was shocked speechless, George was moaning sorrowfully and Fred banged his head on the table. Since Parvati was her best friend and it wasn't known if she would survive, Lavender had to be restrained by those sitting next to her and several Ravenclaws were heard muttering.
Salazar was trying to control his temper as the two shakings of the great hall had loosened some plaster and who knew what else happened around the castle. But finally, he had to give the verdict and pronounce sentence. Arwen had told him that the Pure-bloods in this time were very illogical and lacked common sense, but then, so did the normal wizard/witch. However, at this point it didn't matter as the boy was a fool and unrepentant. He would probably try the same thing but without witnesses, thus he deserved the punishment Sal was about to give him.
Ron was thinking that his punishment would be the food thingie, but he survived it once so – what the hell – he could do it again and plot his revenge. Except everyone was shocked when Sal announced "Ronald Bilius Weasley, you are hereby expelled from Hogwarts."
Ron actually smiled, he was going to leave this prison and could go home. Of course, his wand would be snapped but he could always get another one. He would go home to his loving parents and be the hero who "told the truth" about what had happened, a Dark Lord, pretending to be Salazar Slytherin, and his female minions had stolen the school, had horribly executed Umbridge, a respected Ministry employee, and probably McGonagall, Harry and Neville were going dark and – well he would think about more things to tell a grateful nation and be hailed as a hero. He couldn't wait.
Apparently, Ron had forgotten the rumor going around that to be expelled meant, you'd be kicked out of the school and into the dire weather to try and find your way home. His brothers and Ginny remembered as did many others. Thus, before Ron could begin his rant about being happy to leave and throw in a few parting shots, Salazar snapped his fingers and Ron disappeared from the Great Hall.
The tables, chairs and post were gone and food appeared on the tables once again. Crabbe and Goyle could barely eat due to the shock but forced down a substantial amount of food anyway. Most of the students were quiet with the only sound being the clatter of cutlery and the occasional request to pass down the salt or potatoes. All knew that without the proper clothing, Ron probably wouldn't last five-ten minutes. No one knew if he still had his wand as Sal hadn't mentioned that, but Ron would not have a broom, a map or even a good sense of direction.
The first student of the new regime was really gone and many wondered who would be next.