And here is the last chapter of this Little Story. Hope you enjoyed it. I want to thank all those that left comments or put the Story onto the favourites lists.
It had been three and a half years since Harry and Ginny had started their travels. They had come home for short visits occasionally, but normally they only stayed for a week at a time, simply because the reporters wouldn't take a hint. They had come back for the birth of Fleur and Bill's daughter Victoire and then for the thirtieth wedding anniversary of Molly and Arthur Weasley. There was a huge party at the Burrow to celebrate the occasion and neither of the two wanted to miss it. Now, after having studied all kinds of magic all over the world, they were ready to return to the country of their birth.
Kreacher and Dobby had kept Grimmauld Place in good shape and they moved back in after landing late in the evening with their flight from New York. They had spent the last twenty-two months travelling around the USA, leaning a lot from local shamans and they had even got a tour of Ilvermorny School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in Massachusetts. They had befriended the deputy headmaster there and he had offered them to get an idea how other schools in the world worked and which classes they taught. They had been fascinated by the research into turning muggle devices into magical counterparts and connecting them to the normal muggle networks without interfering with them. It was still a work in progress, but they could add up to one hundred magical mobile phones to a net before it caused problems.
The internet was so far out of their reach, but they were confident that they would succeed within the next five years. A solely magical network was already in the pilot phase. But, to keep up with muggle developments, they needed the connection to the real thing. Otherwise the Statute of Secrecy wouldn't hold up very long. Harry and Ginny took a few very interesting ideas with them, which they planned to suggest to Kingsley, who was still the British Minister for Magic.
"Well, home sweet home," Harry stated grinning.
"Yes, and this time we get to spend much more time here than before," Ginny commented, kissing his cheek.
"True, your Mum will be very happy about it," Harry nodded.
"She will also be on our case to finally take up proper jobs and not jet around the world irresponsibly," Ginny mimicked her mother's constant complaints.
Just because they had taken their time to study foreign magic for longer than initially planned, she had been on their case continuously. But Harry and Ginny didn't see any reason to return to start working until they felt ready for it. The time was as much used to study as it was to work through some lingering mental problems that both of them had. What neither had told any of their families was that over the last two years, Harry had studied psychology and mind healing as his main subjects and Ginny had decided to look into becoming the magical version of a veterinarian. There were courses you could take at magical universities in the States that gave you the qualifications needed for the job. As they had inadvertently learned a lot of the basics during their travels, Harry was now a fully qualified mind healer and Ginny a veterinarian for magical creatures.
After having experienced how problematic it could be if traumatic events weren't addressed and worked through with professional, or really any, help, Harry had decided to start making that his future profession. A mind healer needed to be competent in Potions, Charms, Defensive Magic, Herbology and of course the subjects specific to the job, meaning the mind arts and psychology. Runes were an advantage, but not a requirement, and he had learned a few specific ones to be able to use devices that mind healers in the United States had developed to help patients. Harry planned to set up his own practice and work in cooperation with St. Mungo's and Hogwarts. He would also attempt to train others in the field, as Wizarding Great Britain was very far behind the Magical United States in the development of methods to treat mental problems.
The States were leading in the field, followed by countries like Australia, Japan and Canada. There was a regular exchange of information about new developments in the field. Insights from muggles in psychiatry had inspired magicals in those countries to research possibilities in the fields and it had snowballed from there. The appearances of two dark lords in one century had thrown Europe back in their development, as they mostly had worked on ways to counter the tactics of said dark lords. Not very successful in the case of Britain, admittedly.
Ginny had another project. She had been inspired by how muggles worked to preserve endangered species in the world and how many zoos played an important role in that endeavour. There were a high number of endangered magical creatures as well. Harry and her had looked for a large area of land that could be kept hidden from the muggles, where they could create the first British magical zoo, in part to show the wizards and witches of Britain the wonders of the creatures, and in part to breed endangered species to increase their numbers again and to return some of them into the wild to repopulate the remaining populations.
Thanks to clever investment strategies and getting out of the stock market before the bubble burst in the muggle world, they had multiplied their fortune many times. They had more than enough muggle money to buy the land needed to build the zoo and of course Harry's practice. He didn't need that much space anyway. One spacious house would be enough for his needs. Part to train apprentices and part to treat patients.
"Well, she will get a surprise when we reveal our plans. When do you think we should send Athena with a letter that we're back?" Harry asked.
"Not before the day after tomorrow. I want to sleep to get over the jetlag and relax for a day. She would come over nearly at once, as soon as she got the letter," Ginny replied.
"I have no problem with that. I have been looking forward to sleeping in our own bed again," Harry told her, Ginny catching the double meaning immediately. Even after three years of marriage, they both were very much enjoying the physical side of it.
"Catch me if you can!" She challenged and shot away, towards the stairs, Harry close on her heels.
He caught her on the first floor and pressed her hands over her head while capturing her mouth with his own and trapping her body between his and the wall.
Molly Weasley looked expectantly at the snowy owl that had just delivered the newest letter from her daughter and son-in-law. She really hoped that they would return home soon. While she had tried being understanding of their wish to see the world, three and a half years of that nonsense really were over the top. She was firmly convinced that they should start learning a decent profession and start thinking of their future. They couldn't just live into the day. Even the twins, as much as she didn't fully approve of their shop idea, had become honourable businessmen. It wasn't her favoured career, but they were doing very well and worked together with the Law Enforcement Department of the Ministry and the counterparts of the Ministries in other countries next to their joke business.
Percy had a respectable career at the Ministry and Ron was close to becoming an auror. He was also close to finally proposing to Hermione, the dear girl. Hermione had calmed down a lot after being confronted with the reality of things when she had taken up a position at the Ministry as well. She had finally accepted that she wasn't always right, even if it had been a hard road to that point. How she wished that her youngest would finally come to her senses. She took the letter from Athena and the owl flew out of the window again, obviously not expecting an answer. She opened the letter and started reading. Her face broke into a bright smile.
"Oh, how wonderful!" She exclaimed, surprising her granddaughter Victoire, who was playing on the ground.
She was babysitting for Fleur today, as she had to get some work done that she needed to concentrate on. A toddler was more of a distraction in that and with some of the things Bill and Fleur worked on, it was too dangerous. Fleur had gone into the department that inspected heirlooms for clients for high fees in the name of Gringotts. Everybody knew that Gringotts employed the best curse breakers in the country and therefore, especially in the aftermath of the war, where many dark families lost their heads of house or were extinct in the main line, many vaults remained filled with valuable, but often cursed items.
Gringotts offered a service to have everything checked and possible curses broken, for a fee of course. After Victoire had turned two, Fleur had gone back to work part time. As she was a very good curse breaker, the goblins agreed to the arrangement. She went to work three times in the mornings and three times in the afternoon. Molly eagerly agreed to look after her darling granddaughter for the hours that her mother was working. While she couldn't understand why Fleur wouldn't stay at home with her child, she could accept that Bill and Fleur wanted to save up as much money as possible to be ready when they had their next children. They had told her that in a year or two they planned to have a second one and get three overall, if it was meant to be.
Having lived through the experience of not having much money available in the house, she could understand why they both thought it was a good idea to prepare for the time that Fleur would stay at home full-time. And really, it was a pleasure to look after the little girl.
"Nana?" Victoire asked confused.
"Oh, Tory, a wonderful thing happened, your Aunt Ginny and Uncle Harry are back," She told the little girl.
"Aun' Inny?" She asked, not really remembering the name.
Molly didn't show her grandchild her displeasure at her lack of knowledge of her aunt and uncle. They hadn't been around enough for Victoire to have any memories of them. It was only one more sign that they had been gone for too long. She pondered when she would go to see the two. They had written that they would come over on Saturday for dinner. That would never do and she had a few things to say to them before that. Well, Fleur would come back at one and then she could apparate to London to see the two.
Ginny opened the door and smiled at her parents who had both come to see her and Harry.
"Mum, Dad, please come in. It's so good to see you again," Ginny greeted them both with hugs.
"It's good to see you too, Ginny. You're looking really good," Arthur replied.
Molly nodded and smiled at her youngest. The stern talking to could wait a while longer, until she had properly greeted the two missing members of her family.
"Why don't we go to the lounge and I'll have Dobby serve tea," Ginny suggested.
"Tea sounds lovely, dear," Molly agreed.
They followed Ginny into the lounge and took seats.
"Dobby!" Ginny called.
"Mistress called for Dobby?" Dobby asked happily.
"Yes, would you please prepare tea for us and tell Harry that my parents are here?" She asked
"Dobby will do so directly," He nodded eagerly and popped away.
"Still as excited as always," Arthur commented smiling.
"Yes, he's very happy that we have come back to Grimmauld Place. And that we're going to stay here now. While house elves can pop to any place their masters are, he wasn't too happy that he didn't have a house which he could clean that belonged to us. With our studying in different places all the time, it wasn't really feasible to buy property anywhere," Ginny explained.
"I see. What about Kreacher?" Arthur asked.
"He's becoming really old and we refrain from letting him work too much. Just cleaning the kitchen, as he has always seen that place as his personal territory. He would be unhappy to not be allowed to do that. We fear that he doesn't have to live much longer. Thankfully Dobby looks out for him and makes sure that he doesn't overwork himself," Ginny answered, "We will be sad when it's time for him to go. He was a very valuable help to Harry in finding the horcruxes and after that certainly was a wonderful elf to our family."
"Yes, I wouldn't have expected him to ever change from the way he was when the Order used the house as headquarters," Molly agreed.
Then the door opened and Harry walked inside.
"Molly, Arthur, good to see you," Harry greeted them warmly, shaking his father-in-law's hand and kissing Molly's cheek.
"Harry, it's great that you and Ginny are back," Arthur said.
"I truly hope for good this time. It has been long enough," Molly started on the part that they knew she would want to address.
"Yes, we have decided that it's time to get started with our plans here. We have finished our degrees in the USA and are ready to get started. And we can still travel for vacations," Harry answered.
"What degrees? You didn't mention that in your letters," Molly asked surprised.
"It was meant to be a surprise, Mum," Ginny explained and then Dobby popped in with the tea. He served them all and left again, saying he would check the inventory of the storage room.
"Ginny and I decided in which areas we wanted to work in the future while we travelled and studied different kinds of magic. For the last two years were went to lectures at magical universities in the States, where the subjects we wanted to study are a lot father developed and researched than they are here in Europe. We became aware of them while travelling Japan. Ginny has a degree in Magical Veterinary and I have one in Mind Healing, next to a full one in muggle Psychology, as they go hand in hand," Harry told them.
"Really? That's impressive," Arthur commented.
"What exactly does a mind healer do? I know about magical creatures' healers," Molly asked.
"It's basically that it deals with illnesses of the mind. Like traumas caused by extreme circumstances, like big accidents, wars, abuse and sometimes spells and magical creatures. Like those that have been in contact with dementors. Here in England, the only known remedy is chocolate that deals with the immediate effects, but the terror they cause isn't treated and you are left alone to deal with it. A mind healer learns how to help patients to overcome those terrors," Harry explained.
"It would have been great if the field had been known when I was back after the Chamber of Secrets. I could have used the help of one," Ginny said, "I have learned a few of the things Harry studied, simply by quizzing him for tests, and a lot of things would have been immensely helpful while trying to deal with what had happened to me. His field deals with how the mind of a human being works and there are techniques you can use to face your fears."
"That sounds complicated," Molly mentioned.
"It is an intensive area of study, that's certainly true. I only managed to finish in two years, because Ginny and I had coincidentally already studied related fields of magic during our travels. Like mind magic in Japan. The magical monks there taught us far more than the known Legilimency and Occlumency that are about what people in England think about when they hear about the mind arts. While they practice that as well, they use certain meditation techniques to really explore the mind, both the physical form as well as the spiritual form. If you master those different techniques, you can find the exact location of an injury to the brain for example. Or how a person has retreated from the world to avoid pain or is too afraid to face something," Harry explained, "It turned out that normally you need to start off with similar techniques before you are allowed into the advanced courses that lead to the degree.
"The Professor teaching the subject was more than impressed with the knowledge I already had and after testing my level in all areas, he allowed me to skip the basic studies, which normally take another one and a half to two years. I also taught him the techniques in my free time, as they are more effective than the standard methods. I held a few lectures on my experiences during my last year of studies as well. It was fascinating. People in the States were very eager to increase their knowledge of foreign methods in the field and we performed several experiments while I was studying. Our results were published in medical magazines. I even was invited to attend a convention for Mind Healing two months before I got my degree. It was very interesting to listen to the results of other researchers in the field, next to practicing mind healers."
"And you plan to work for St. Mungo's then?" Arthur asked.
"No, I'm going to open my own practice. I'm going to see what kind of houses are available either close to or in Diagon Alley, or in Hogsmeade. I'm going to offer both St. Mungo's and Hogwarts a cooperation that they can call me if they have patients that would need a mind healer. But, as I'm the only one in the country right now, I also see it as my job to spread the field farther. I'm going to see if I can find a student or two that I can teach the basics of the art and then perhaps send them over to the States to finish their studies at one of the universities. Perhaps St. Mungo's even has some healers that are interested in specialising in this field, which can be part of the cooperation. This is a very underestimated field and we need more trained professionals to cover all the demand, which currently is simply labelled as 'unfortunate problems that normal healing doesn't cover'. The ones suffering most from them, normally end in the long-term ward of St. Mungo's," Harry replied.
"Like the Longbottoms?" Arthur asked.
"Yes, like them and even Lockhart. While no mind healer can bring back memories that were obliviated a long time ago, you get training on how to help a victim of that spell to regain his normal functionality. For example, Lockhart would have got sessions with a trained mind healer for an hour each day after being sent to St. Mungo's. It would include things on how to behave, what was socially acceptable, basics of history and what his life was before. It would probably take about a year, but after that he would be able to take up a basic job again and look after himself. Further sessions would deal with other things. You can also train those people, once they are moderately stable, to use basic spells for daily life again. Like summoning things, operating a stove and so on," Harry answered, "In fact, I'm going to offer Neville to have a look at his parents to see if I can find what's wrong with them. I doubt that they would still have the injuries to their nervous system that the cruciatus curse caused. Otherwise they wouldn't be able to walk around and things like that."
"If you could do that, it would be a medical miracle," Molly threw in.
"I will have to see what the situation is before I can promise anything. But I at least want to try. It's not fair that he has to suffer much more than I had to from the way his parents were taken from him," Harry softly said and Ginny put her hand onto his knee, which he gave her a warm smile for.
"And what are your plans, Ginny?" Molly asked.
"I'm going to work on preserving endangered magical species. I have collected a lot of information how muggles work to bring back endangered species of their animals and I want to do something similar with ones in the magical world. Next to that, I want to make many more magical people realise that we have a duty to the creatures that share our world and how wonderful they are. I'm going to create a magical zoo in an area that will be warded against muggles. Harry and I will be looking for a suitable location and then buy the land. We will need several hectares to make it really work. I have made some connections with preserves for different species all over the world and they promised to assist in setting up this project," Ginny said excitedly.
"But where would you get the money, not to mention that the kinds of property you are talking about are all in muggle hands," Arthur asked.
"Well, muggle money is really the last of our concerns," Ginny said happily.
"What do you mean, dear? I mean, I know you got very good deals in exchanging money with the goblins, but it wouldn't be enough for that kind of project," Molly asked, "Especially as you would have spent a good deal of money over the last three and a half years of traveling."
"I invested half of the money I made from that into the muggle stock market in solid companies that had a lot of potential for growth. I left the money to work for us for a few years and withdrew it when I noticed signals that it wouldn't last. I avoided the losses that many muggles made for not realising that things were going to burst. I multiplied that capital many times. Our estimations for the purchase of the land are that the mere price for the land itself will be around twenty million Pounds," Harry said.
"So much?" Arthur exclaimed shocked.
"Our muggle accounts hold overall two hundred seventy million Pounds, Arthur," Harry told his in-laws, "We can easily afford to buy the land."
Both gaped at them.
"How did you think we afforded not having to work and travelling all over the world?" Ginny asked laughing.
"B-But, how?" Arthur stuttered, "I know you donated high amounts of money for the rebuilding effort."
"That was money that I liberated from Riddle's followers to damage their side in the war. I didn't want anything to do with the money that they got through their illegal businesses. But I also didn't want the money to go to waste, therefore I asked Kingsley where to direct it, to actually help those that really needed it. And as I made sure that the Ministry had nothing to do with it, except for the information who needed help, nothing could disappear in the system. The foundation that I set up before leaving the country is a private institution that was financed with dirty money. But it was much better to do something good with it than shunning the money for how it was earned. The Death Eaters would scream in fury if they knew what I did with their wealth," Harry chuckled.
"We also still have a high amount of gold sitting in our vaults at Gringotts. Harry let the goblins invest the gold into ventures they thought best, as he really didn't have the time and patience to investigate if a company was a good investment or not. He promised his account manager ten per cent of the net profit and let him work, as he was much better qualified in this as Harry. The only condition that he gave was that he wouldn't invest in businesses owned by people that supported Riddle. It worked spectacularly. In just three years, he multiplied our starting amount by twelve and we don't intend to change the arrangement. It works wonderfully," Ginny pointed out.
Arthur and Molly were totally shocked. Sure, they had known that Harry came from old money, the Potters were among the wealthier families in their world, but this kind of monetary growth was unheard of.
"Not to mention that I get high returns from my original investment into Fred and George's shop. They insisted to set up an investment vault for my third of their profits, telling me that it was only right to give me a share of the profits, as I gave them their starting capital. With how their business flourishes, I get a few hundred galleons each quarter as well. Knowing that we never had to worry about money, we could take our time to explore and study what we wanted to do for our future. Even if we could easily let our money work for us and never work a day in our lives. But that would be too boring and we really want to bring change into our world here in England," Harry explained.
"I can't believe it. And here I worried about you wasting your money while not learning a proper job," Molly shook her head.
"You would never have believed us, had we told you everything before, Mum. Now that we're ready to get started, it wasn't a problem anymore. And even if, you would have worried too much about something going wrong. This way, we got to live our lives to the fullest for some years, got to see the world and know what we want to do in the future. It works out perfectly. And once we have set up the first magical zoo in the British Isles and have it running smoothly, we can think about expanding our family. Both Harry and I want to have children sometime in the future. But we're still young and have a few more years before we want to get started on that," Ginny told them.
"I see. Well, I can only wish you luck with your plans. It won't be easy, and many people will try to put stones in your way," Arthur warned.
"Well, they can't really do anything to stop us. Anybody with a degree can practice his craft in wizarding Britain. And anybody can set up a preserve for a type of magical creatures, as long as certain security and secrecy measures are taken. We looked up the laws to be sure. While most healers work for St. Mungo's, there is a big enough number working independently as well. And honestly, alone my name, as much as I don't like my fame, will do what is needed to make the possibility of consulting me for mind healing known," Harry pointed out.
They talked a bit longer, Harry and Ginny showed off more pictures in their photo albums from their travels and the younger couple promised to come for dinner on Saturday evening, for which Molly and Arthur would invite the whole family.
Harry and Ginny were busy until the weekend. First thing they did the day after meeting Molly and Arthur was looking up who owned certain large, uninhabited areas. They had talked about the possible location for the zoo and preserve combination before returning to England and they had narrowed the place down to three that would work perfectly. The first one turned out to have been made a nature sanctuary, which disqualified it for their use, but the other two were still valid options. They apparated to see the places and both seemed appropriate for their needs.
"I would prefer the island," Ginny told Harry in the evening, "That one would be easiest to ward against muggles."
"That's true. The one in Wales would need more work," Harry nodded, while holding Ginny close to his side.
"And it didn't look like the island had had any visitors in centuries. Well, it is a good deal away from the coast and there isn't anything of value for the muggles there," Ginny commented, "The cliffs make landing there by ship very hard and the little forest that can be found there isn't lucrative enough to make the effort."
"We just need to find out who owns the island. Then we can buy it. If it belongs to the government, it would probably be easy. They always need money and getting about twenty million Pounds for selling a useless place would certainly be considered a good deal. But the island is large enough for us to build the zoo and we can simply connect it to the floo network and set up apparition points for visitors," Harry agreed, "Not to mention the options for space multiplication that we learned from the Aborigines in Australia."
"Yes, I can't wait until we can get started. But for now, I would very much like you to do something for me," Ginny told Harry.
"And what would that be?" Harry asked, having an idea.
"Well, all the visiting of places to see if they would suit our needs has given me some tension in my muscles. As my husband it is your duty to help me get rid of them," Ginny informed him mock sternly.
"Then I will of course gladly perform my husbandly duties, my darling wife," He replied likewise, "How about we go up into our bedroom and I get started on your shoulders and work my way down," He suggested nibbling on her ear.
"A very good idea," She agreed and willingly let him lift her from the couch and apparate them up into their bedroom.
Neither of both ever noticed that Dobby popped into the room to clean up the cups of cold tea they had left behind.
"Dobby better makes sure that all reserve bedsheets are cleaned and ready to be put on the bed tomorrow. Master and
Mistress are practicing baby-making again. If only they would finally get to it," Dobby grumbled.
He really wanted for his wonderful master to have an heir of his own, but despite being married for this long, his master and mistress still hadn't decided to have that heir. Not for lack of practice, that much was sure.
It turned out that the island was owned by an old, nearly bankrupt noble, who had simply never found any use for the island. His family had got the land centuries ago by the king at the time and, as it was nearly inaccessible, not really found a reason to make the effort to go there often. He had only been there once in his life and found the place dreadfully boring. But, as nobody wanted to buy the island, he had had to live with it. When Ginny and Harry had approached him with questions how much he would want for the island, as it would make a nice place for vacations away from the hustle and bustle of the city, he had offered them that they could have the island for overall five million Pounds, as long as they paid the land registry themselves as well.
Harry had immediately agreed and asked to arrange an appointment with a solicitor to get the official part done. The old man, he was already eighty-one years old, was more than happy to be rid of the place, which had only cost him taxes, but hadn't been of any use, as he didn't have a helicopter to reach the island, probably the only way to get there. And even that was difficult, as there weren't many places to land. The man used the money to clear up his debts with the banks and still had about one and a half million Pounds left to spend on whatever he wanted. He was happy and Harry and Ginny were more than delighted to have got the land as cheap as they did. It left the fifteen million Pounds that they had calculated for the purchase for building the zoo.
Harry was also looking for a suitable house for his practice, but, so far, the houses he had visited didn't match his ideas. Therefore, he currently helped Ginny setting up the drafts for how she wanted the zoo to look like and how the mix between buildings and natural areas should be done. They already had an idea which creatures would be kept there. Nothing like dragons, as it was too dangerous to hold them in close quarters to other magical creatures, but unicorns, phoenixes, nifflers and many more would find a home there. Harry fully planned to ask Hagrid to see if he could get a few 'interesting creatures' through his contacts.
If anybody could find them rare creatures that were normally uncommon to have, it was Hagrid.
Professor McGonagall and Madam Pomfrey listened to the story Harry and Ginny Potter were telling them about their three and a half years long travels after their wedding back in 1998.
"Well, I have to say, you truly made most out of your time," McGonagall commented after the two were done telling what they had seen and learned during the three and a half years, "I would also happily assist in realising the zoo project by letting the COMC classes help in setting the compounds up and getting the creatures settled in. It would certainly be great practical experience for the students in a fairly safe environment. And even Hagrid can't get all the creatures he wants to show to the students. This could be a great compromise to match his teaching plan without having to have the creatures running around Hogwarts."
"Certainly. We would be happy to let the Hogwarts classes have a discount for visits. Especially if we get a number of the students as helpers in the starting phase," Ginny promised, "This is as much a business as it is a project to preserve endangered magical species. And we plan to use Hagrid's contacts to get some of the more dangerous creatures. Of course, only once all security measures are in place. I don't want something like a manticore running around wild."
"No, I wouldn't either. Do you really want to have that kind of creatures there?" McGonagall asked.
"We need to present a mix of harmless and manageable dangerous creatures to make it interesting for the visitors. We won't have large creatures like dragons there, but anything that can reasonably be handled in size and danger potential will be there. For example, magical wolves. If you know how to handle them, they can be a great attraction for visitors," Ginny confirmed.
"Next to that, I suggested to include something similar to shows that are common in muggle zoos when the animals are fed. With magic we have less restrictions on what we can do space-wise, which means we could have animals that need large compounds, like dolphins or orcas there as well. We learned in Greece that there were smaller populations of magical subspecies as well and that they have been hunted strongly in the past for their uses in potions. We would see to it that we got one or two breeding couples for the start and then work on repopulating their species. The younger ones that can't be used for our breeding purposes, simply because we can't inbreed the lines without fearing illnesses to spread, will be traded to other magical zoos or returned to the wild," Harry pointed out, "We have also already decided to have some cute and tame animals that children will be allowed to pet, next to offering rides on ponies through certain parts of the zoo. Families with small children will probably be our main target audience and you have to offer something special to make them come to us, even after the initial visit. It is meant to be profitable for the long run after all."
"Yes, they would come more than once for that," Pomfrey agreed, "What made you decide to go into the medical field? You never showed much interest in it while you were at school, Mr Potter."
"Personal experiences and what Hermione dubbed my 'Saving People Thing'. I learned a lot during my travels and found out that other countries had ways to help people like me, who have been through a large number of traumatic events in their life. It made me wish that mind healing had also been known in Great Britain after my first year, when my touch caused Quirrell's body to burn. While he had already been as good as dead, according to Professor Dumbledore's words his body was eaten up from the inside by the possession from Riddle, it was still me that dealt the decisive strike. Then the Chamber of Secrets mess, the constant bullying against me, especially in my fourth and fifth years. Normally I should have broken under the stress and it certainly left scars on me. I can acknowledge that as fact. But getting help from experienced mind healers helped me lessen the impact.
"I want to help others in that area, as, if we are honest, there are hundreds if not thousands of people that need help to deal with the things the war caused. Be it loss of loved ones, being tortured by Death Eaters or losing everything they held dear. I didn't want to fight anymore after the war. I had enough. But I still wanted to help people. Being an auror sounded cool when I was fourteen, but not anymore when I was nearly eighteen and had just finished school. I actually didn't know what I wanted to do with my life, therefore travelling with my wife was the best I could do at that time. It let me gain distance from everything, especially with the press being their obnoxious selves," Harry explained.
"Well, I certainly will happily call you in when we have to deal with mental problems in children. I have long since said that something needed to be done to help those coming in from bad families, but the headmaster always said that nothing could be done, as the children belonged into their families. That it was the right thing. It didn't matter that some parents were totally unsuited to raise children and that many were abused. But beyond telling families that physically abused their children in the visible ways off, he didn't interfere," Pomfrey stated.
"I know, I lost count how often I asked him to leave the Dursleys," Harry grumbled.
"I wish we could have done more, but the protection the blood wards gave you were seen as more important than the less than acceptable living conditions you faced there," McGonagall sighed, "And as Sirius couldn't take you in, it was up to Professor Dumbledore to decide where you lived, as he had been given magical guardianship over you. It was a good thing he got that arranged as quickly as he did, as many darker families that had managed to bribe their way out of Azkaban after 1981 had petitioned to foster you. Only his influence stalled them. And nobody could argue against having you raised by close relatives."
"Theory and practice are once again very different things. Harry would have been much better off being raised by one of the teachers here at Hogwarts than with those monsters," Ginny declared icily.
The two older women wisely kept silent to that. They knew that Harry's childhood had been far from good, but there was nothing that could be done against the word of Albus Dumbledore.
"Do you already have rooms to open your mind healer practice?" Pomfrey asked.
"Not yet. I have been looking at several buildings, but so far none of them matched what I want," Harry answered, "I have looked in both muggle and wizarding areas. But with the muggle ones I have to be careful to not tip them off about magic, which disqualified two properties that would otherwise have been suitable. I can't simply guarantee that people will behave and keep to muggle security precautions if my name is involved. And those places were in London where there are talks about installing cameras all around for public safety. That would be a disaster of epic proportions if my practice was there as well."
"True, the muggles advance more and more with their technology and if the wizarding community doesn't catch up and learns how to blend in with them soon, our world will be exposed. I give it twenty years at most until the muggles have the means to get films of a wizard or witch using magic in a place they think they are unobserved in and let other muggles see it on their new development, the internet. As far as we found out so far, there aren't means to get it done directly, you need a computer at your home for that, but with how fast their technology is developed, it is just a question of time. You should start Muggle Studies as a mandatory class for all students up to fifth year, Professor," Ginny advised, "Thanks to our travels, I know more than normal British magicals about how muggles work around their lack of magic. And let me tell you, it doesn't stand behind our spells at all."
"I will take that into consideration, Mrs Potter," McGonagall nodded and wrote it down on a piece of parchment in front of her.
"You should look up the houses in Hogsmeade that are for sale, Mr Potter," Pomfrey threw in, "Several people want to move elsewhere, as many simply have too many bad memories of the oppression by the Death Eaters to stay in the place that always makes them remember. I know of at least three houses that are offered for sale."
"I will certainly see into it. And those people will also get information about the option of having meetings with me to treat their mind problems. That is exactly what my job entails after all," Harry stated.
They continued talking for a while longer, until Harry and Ginny returned to Grimmauld Place.
Over the next few weeks Harry's and Ginny' projects started to take form. They both knew it would be a long way until everything was set up, but they believed in their visions. Others also helped out, sometimes with involving their contacts elsewhere, for example, Professor McGonagall got Ginny in contact with Newt Scamander, who came with his grandson Rolf, as they were both magi-zoologists and very interested in her project of a zoo that also worked to preserve magical creatures.
Madam Pomfrey called some healers she knew and asked for patients that would benefit from visiting a qualified mind healer. Harry had found one house in Hogsmeade that met his needs and had remodelled it over the period of two weeks, before he began advertising his services through St. Mungo's. It would be a long road to establish this new field of healing in the country, but he was determined to see it through, and Ginny would always be right at his side.
As he had told Molly and Arthur, he went to St. Mungo's, with permission of Neville, and had a look at the Longbottoms. He found out that the reason why they didn't come out of their near catatonic state was a mental block, which they had created instinctively with their magic, when the pain from the cruciatus curse had become too much for them to bear. He had hope that he could slowly erode the block, but in the end, the last step had to be taken by Alice and Frank themselves. Neville wanted to try and see if Harry could bring them back, so he allowed him to meet them once a day, as Harry didn't have many patients yet, he could easily manage that part.
Harry started with mapping out the minds of both Alice and Frank and then sent stimulating impulses directly into different parts of their brains, where he let them see, hear or otherwise experience images that they would see as positive, trying to coax them towards them. Like baby laughter, phoenix song, soft melodies on the piano, the smell of their favourite flowers or food and other things they had liked in the past, for which the information had been supplied by Augusta Longbottom, who by now was willing to try anything that might have a chance to heal them. The first results after a week of doing so were promising. Their brains were active in the parts that Harry had hoped to stimulate.
They continued the treatment for four weeks before Harry added to it. He asked the healers of St. Mungo's to add positive physical experiences to the program, like warm baths with well-smelling herbs in the water, which had been proven to open up the mind. Soft music supported the opening of their minds. Then they were to be made touching different kinds of materials, none of them unpleasant or painful. They experimented which ones worked best for this. Neville was very diligent to perform this part each day, as Harry couldn't be there all the time, and things like this Neville could easily take over. Augusta also supported it.
After two months, Harry got more patients, and the Longbottoms had improved a good deal compared to their previous state. Sometimes, according to Augusta, they showed glimpses of being aware who they were. It was as if they were peeking out from behind a slightly opened door. Harry estimated that they might come out for longer after three months of treatment. Neville and his grandmother were already happy that there was visible progress made and did what Harry advised for the continuation of the treatment. For example, he had the two transferred back to Longbottom Hall, as a familiar environment could already help a lot in the two coming back.
After all, having them in St. Mungo's hadn't worked for the past twenty years, so why not try having them living at home, with a healer checking in on them every three days, if nothing bad was noticed by Augusta, Neville or the Longbottom house elves, who were all very eager to do their best to bring the two back.
Ginny had met with Newt and Rolf Scamander, and won Luna for her project too. Coincidentally, Luna hit it off with Rolf and the two could be seen discussing several kinds of magical creatures all the time, even if the discussions could get quite heated over many of the creatures Luna believed in. Well, if they worked out, Ginny wouldn't interfere.
Charlie, who loved his little sister's project, was won as an advisor on how to set up secure creature compounds. As he worked with dragons, he had a lot of experience in what to look out for, what to avoid and so on. His employer, the dragon preserve in Romania, agreed to send him to Great Britain on loan to assist with getting the project started, next to also offering the zoo two kinds of small dragon breeds, which were much easier to keep than the commonly known large ones. One was a Chinese breed, called the Snapper Blue, which was about the size of a full-grown kangaroo and couldn't spit fire. It killed its prey with poison.
The second type was an Australian breed, the Silver Mountain Dragon, which instead of fire spit ice. It was about the size of a German Sheppard and the ice could reach five metres from the dragon's mouth. It was certainly great to have those two types to show at the zoo, as they would certainly become crowd pullers. The Scamanders added their vast knowledge and experience to the things Ginny and Harry had learned during their travels and studies.
They all knew that the completion of all their projects would take years, but they would get there and bring what they had come to love doing to the magical people of their home county, even if there would be many stones and obstacles to be overcome for certain. They were a great team, they loved each other deeply and they were determined to make this into something that following generations could enjoy and expand on.