Chapter 1: Ebbing Borders
It was common knowledge that wizards lived very long lives, but that was nothing compared to the lifespan of witches.
For normal human beings, the average life expectancy of males was sixty-eight point two years, versus the female life expectancy of seventy-three point two years.
For the magical population, however, the average wizard could expect a nice long life of approximately one hundred seven and three quarters in years. That was not counting the outlier that reached an age of seven hundred fifty-five years because he was cheating by using the elixir of life. It was also a rather sad fact that every witch to ever live… had died one way or another.
A witch, however, had yet to ever die of "old age", a fact that they had kept secret from the male populace in fear of what some might do.
It was well known that women were already treated poorly, there need not be any more "reasons" for this.
So far, a witch had only been taken down by disease, fatal accidents, or murder, and never their own bodies giving out on them. It was why Griselda Marchbanks death had been looked at with such suspicion, and the head of the D.M.L.E. had personally investigated her death, only to discover a plot from a past student taking revenge for some bad test scores.
Amelia Bones had caught the culprit… well, because there was a valid reason behind the poor test scores.
By that time the Statute for Old Woman's Secrets, otherwise known as The Book Club, was in full effect, and Amelia was able to fudge the records a bit so that the perp got their deserved justice, but Griselda Marchbanks was publicly known to have died of old age.
"Publicly" only truly meant about half the population; the females would know that it wasn't the true story.
Given this, it was no wonder that the Golden Trio were able to live long enough to witness the unification of the mundane world. It made things much easier for them, as now The Big Three did not have to liaise with multiple governments, and now only had to liaise with one. They still had to know all of the different languages they learned, and practice them, though.
In fact, languages were often rotated in official meetings. If they had to meet on a regular basis, they would pick a language that they haven't spoken in a while, and use only that language for the meeting. Unless, of course, the person they had the meeting with could not understand that language. It had originally started as a fun way to mess with people and then had become common practice.
It helped to know all the languages that they did, considering that the public that they governed spoke a myriad of languages, and they often worked with people that did not understand English.
In fact, it had now become a requirement to work for the government to know at least two different languages.
When the liaison with the mundane populace became confined to one government, it was less stressful for Harry, as now his branch did not have to track as many possible threats. They only had to prep for a possible attack from the human's alliance.
When the more mundane population had managed to set up a functioning colony on the moon of the planet, the magical populace thought it was about time that they looked to the stars - except for the centaurs; they were already looking to the stars.
Especially considering that the mundane - upon consideration it was deemed the proper term for the magicless populace - liaison had been fairly smug about that.
Well, until Hannah told them of the time when Hermione had used time travel to take more classes when she was thirteen.
They had had that light banter back and forth for as long as that particular person was in office - discussing the various advancements the two's population had achieved.
Back to the topic of space exploration, it was about time that the magical people got ahead of their mundane counterparts again.
There was only so much an enchanted blade could do, after all.
Of course, militarily speaking, they were almost on par in terms of "technological" level, as Luna had incorporated more modern, mundane equipment ideas with an extra magical flare to it.
They even had the equivalent of a nuclear bomb in the form of out-of-control fiend fire.
Long story short was that the magical races were very interested in space exploration, and after only a few years, it was possible for Harry to have the equivalent of military intelligence satellites. A few years after that, the scientifically minded individuals of the magical community, with proper funding and permissions, had sent a werewolf to the moon accompanied with a vampire - as they didn't take any oxygen, so they were easy - a goblin, and a witch.
To the surprise of everyone involved, the werewolf of the four did not change. In fact, the werewolf had thereafter had been able to not only control their change but was able to not be forced into one when the next full moon appeared.
After the new cure for lycanthropy was discovered, under the expense of the government, there was a new campaign for the transport of werewolves to the moon for the costly treatment. Though Harry couldn't voice an opinion on what the government was doing, on the inside he was ecstatic; it was saddening that Remus was not able to live to see that day, but at least no one would have to suffer as he had.
The next major milestone they achieved was only a decade after that, wherein they were able to set up their first functioning colony on Titan, one of Jupiter's moons.
They were able to learn from the disaster on the moon colony that glass domes were not a viable option to sustain a colony, considering that it was extremely easy to get cracks and holes in the glass. Following the same logic, wards were out ruled as the seal could not be guaranteed.
Despite these issues, the Magical Sapience Society was able to persevere and prevail in the end.
Then came the colonisation and general exploration of deeper, interstellar, space. A new colony was connected to the Floo network - which, apparently, was faster than anything the mundane populace had created at the time.
Part of the defences that Harry had ordered to be put in place were wards not unlike the ones that hid the magical havens of Earth. However, he didn't stop there, as he used the various other assets available to him to hide the people as best as possible.
Luna, among other that belonged to her department, had both the clearance and the curiosity required for them to be present while the defences were being placed. They were taking various readings and measurements, with a fair few non-invasive tests, to find out how the magic worked.
Before Luna's department, there were some magical departments that dealt with the mysteries of magic- namely the old MoM's Department of Mysteries. However, they never had taken the basic scientific methods to discovery. In fact, before The Cause, in most places, any mundane methods were heavily frowned upon. In some cases, it was to the point where writing with a pen instead of with the "proper" quill and ink were punishable by a month in prison, or a hefty fine.
Curiously enough, writing with a charcoal pencil was deemed socially acceptable.
Either way, after the defences were put in place by the experts in their respective fields, Luna had reported that magic affected reality itself. While not groundbreaking stuff - most having assumed as such, especially those with any experience in time-altering magics - it did explain why the various technological advancements of the mundane world were unable to "see" the magical world.
As an interesting, but very important note for further reference, the planet the populace had last found was named Shanxi, and was a planet that the Systems Alliance would eventually colonise.
In the exploration of the galaxy, the M.S.S. kept finding large - obviously artificial - metal constructs. Sometimes the constructs were obviously inactive, but other ones were obviously still in an 'active- but dormant' state. By then it was well known that magic did not exactly jive with any type of electronics, and every time that the magical populace wanted something that the humans invented first, they had to reinvent it to work as a magical source. Unless they were rather simple, of course, like a syringe injecting potions.
Now, when Harry went to get his regular checkup medically - meaning he had just survived another normally fatal incident - in that case, another failed assassination attempt - the healers had discovered something they had not before been able to find due to inferior methods. It turned out that Harry belonged to a rather small demographic to magically gifted humans. Normally a magical human was categorised in gender as being a wizard - or sorcerer - for male, and witch - or sorceress - for female. However, there were only a very rare few to have the special ability, even among magicians, and that was a metamorphmagus. A metamorph was technically neither and both the typical genders.
With practice, a metamorph had the ability to change from their base gender to the opposite gender. A base gender was something that a metamorph subconsciously chose when they were very young. That was not even mentioning their ability to change their base looks to anything they would want, something that was the basis for the most advanced magics professional cosmetic transfiguration masters used on their patients.
When Harry was informed of his untapped potential, he was understandably confused - but when he went over his past it made sense as to why he was able to grow out his hair so quickly when he was younger, or the extra speedy - even for most magicians - recoveries.
When Harry told his two closest friends at the time - Hannah and Hermione - he was rewarded with unexpectedly relief-filled faces. He had expected curiosity from Hermione, and joy from Hannah, but the relieved looks were definitely new. So, he decided to be the one to do the expected thing - he called them out on it.
"Well, you see Harry - you know that Hermione and I are female, right?" Hannah asked. Harry nodded suspiciously as he went to take his seat for their pre-business meeting tea. They chose to use Hungarian for that day's language. "Well, you know how the Statute of Secrecy is still largely enforced, despite there not being an ICW anymore?" Again, another nod.
This time, it was Hermione's turn to speak, "Well, the magical races being as secretive as they already are, witches got together to create their own statute- codenamed The Book Club."
And so began a very enlightening discussion for Harry, as he was let in on exactly what The Book Club was. He was also let in on why the two were so relieved - they wouldn't be outliving another old friend, one they've had since they were still kids. That, and it was one less major secret they had to keep from a friend. As they worked in differing branches of government, they tended to have to keep certain things from each other as they did not have the clearance, sometimes. Didn't mean they had to like it, though.
The only reason why Harry was allowed to be let into the feminine secret was that a) Harry was technically female too, just without the issue of turning into a hell beast once a month, and b) he still fit into the category of no-one knowing how old they could get without dying of essentially, old age.
That was when Harry and co. were in their mid-sixties.
As time went on, people aged. As people aged, they tended to become closer to death's door. Such was the case for Harry's wizard friends ~ Hermione and Hannah were widowed at the wizened ages of one hundred, and one hundred thirteen, respectively.
By an added twist of fate, Luna Scrimgeour nee Lovegood was in the middle of divorcing her husband when he died of natural causes. Luna was still able to get his possessions because the man was yet to be divorced at the time.
It was also the point when the MSS gave the Systems Alliance permission to build a colony on Shanxi unawares to most of the mundanes involved that they had needed to ask permission to be there.
Harry had advised against having a mundane colony next to theirs as it created various liabilities. Hannah had done it anyway, stating that it was always a good idea to have as many friends available as possible to help in a possible future catastrophe.
Harry had rebutted with the fact of it utterly sucking if their allies pulled them into the fight, but had to concede to the political move. His job in relation to the Head of State was to offer the advice based on the military application. He did not know or understand the political side of things and instead had to adhere to the Concordia in being neutral to all things political.
In fact, Luna's department had invented a particular spell - that Harry was using at the time - that allowed the caster - not target, caster - to be completely neutral and unbiased with the option of complete neutrality, or tailored to a specific set of needs.
It was used extensively in all things government, and in fact had become part of the standard training that all legal professions took. It even made it into law that some professions had to have it active during any official business. For example, a Judge was required to be completely impartial in passing judgement, and they used the spell on top of their formal training to provide extra precaution.
However, the issue was that the spell did not last long, was very complicated to cast, had different casting methods for each situation, and that unless configured correctly it took away all bias. That included some of what made Harry so effective in his work - not only was his past that made him a paranoid son of a bitch count as bias, so too did his military knowledge.
Not to mention the risk of losing essential emotions like empathy and sympathy if incorrectly cast, which were essential emotions for social beings to have.
Harry used the spell nonetheless, but he was very careful to specify that - in that situation - Harry was only to become impartial to all things political, along with a few other possible biases that would illogically factor in without the spell. For example, one of the more common biases amongst the MSS citizens were those against unification - those that saw the species and not the person.
However, after the invention of the Impartiality Charm, there was a dramatic decrease in civil violence , as well as a wide range of problems that were already declining in severity, but were still a problem at the developers of the particular spell had gotten themselves an Order of Merlin, First Class each, and an entirely new honorific named after their project name.
It was a passing suggestion by Hermione to Hannah during one of the three's weekly get-togethers, as she had thought that as there were only the Order of Merlin's three class awards, and it would be a great way to promote the growth of scientific thought; it played to a certain type of greed.
Hermione had been right, too; after the Dalek (the original project name composed of the names of the magicals a part of the project) peace prize, there was a significant increase in applications to institutes of higher learning. It meant that, for the three, both Luna would stop complaining about a lack of numbers in her department, and that research would increase in speed.
A/N: This is a little longer than my average chapter, and yet I didn't get everything in there that I wanted. Ah, well, I'll just have to put it in the next one.
Tell me what you think about it!