This is the last chapter. Thank you for leaving so many reviews and favouring the story. Now happy reading.
A Dark Shadow Returns
It was finally time for the last task to begin. Harry had finished his NEWTs a week ago and was sure that he had managed to pass everything to his satisfaction. Harry and Aaron had spent the day with their parents, their sisters during the lunch break and after classes let out, the Blacks and Remus Lupin. Sirius had come to make sure that security measures were airtight. He wouldn't risk anything with the problems that had come up in the first two tasks. The public, informed by Rita Skeeter in very detailed articles, was already against the Ministry performance so far. Aaron becoming champion against his will, Harry showing his displeasure over Gabrielle's endangerment in a powerful display of magic, a successful lawsuit against Hogwarts and the Ministry led by the Potters and the Delacours, resulting in major fines for those involved, and loss of the positions of Chief Warlock of the Wizengamot and Chief Mugwump of the ICW for Dumbledore were all very prominent in people's minds.
Fudge had tried to get the Daily Prophet to report the Ministry in a good light, but the Potters and their allies had prevented that easily. With the Potters themselves owning 19 % of the shares, the Blacks 25 % and the Longbottoms holding 11 %, they controlled 55 % of the Daily Prophet and had therefore the controlling majority. It didn't matter that the Ministry held 30 % and was the single largest shareholder, combined they could force a certain policy in reporting on the Prophet, which meant that articles had to be properly researched and outright lies, slander and exaggerated reporting were not permitted.
From the current score, which only included the first task, as the four champions had refused to accept any points given for the second task due to the organizers endangering Gabrielle, Harry would go into the maze that was the third task first, followed by Aaron, then Fleur and last Viktor. They were all close together in points, except Harry who had nine points lead on Aaron. Harry and Aaron were ready for whatever the maze would hold for them. Aaron was advised to simply do his best and keep a cool head. Harry was going to attempt winning the Tournament though. He was ready for this and wanted to make an impression. They all hoped that whoever had put Aaron's name into the Goblet of Fire was not going to get past Sirius' security precautions. He had personally checked each of the aurors who would be patrolling the maze in teams of two with a teacher. This way the champions in the maze should be as safe as possible. On top of that, he had set up anti-apparition, anti-portkey and anti-unforgivable wards.
The things that the Blacks had come up with over centuries were incredible. Not always legal and certainly sickening in some cases but concerning protective wards only some of the Potter ancestors had surpassed their ingenuity. He had kept what he did silent though. Nobody but James knew what Sirius had set up. It increased the level of security a lot.
Bagman was informing the audience of the current ranking of the champions and how much time between them entering the maze would pass. The students in the audience cheered for their respective champions loudly. Harry held Fleur in his arms and assured her that he would be safe in the maze and asked her to look out herself. She promised him and gave him a quick peck on the lips. Then Harry had to get ready to enter the maze. Once the canon was fired by Filch, which was the signal, he started running into the maze.
The obstacles mostly were what Harry had expected. The worst ones were part of Hagrid's ever so dangerous zoo. Thankfully Harry had taken Care of Magical Creatures long enough to know how to deal with all of them. While he hadn't taken NEWTs in Care, he had been a guest at Hagrid's house often enough, and for the last two years, thanks to Hagrid being made COMC Professor, and the man therefore often showing him what would have been covered during the last two years, he knew what to expect and had prepared accordingly. He faced a boggart, a hippogriff, a blast-ended skrewt, Aaron and his friends had complained about them lots of times, therefore he knew what to avoid with them and how to work around one, a sphinx, an ashwinder, a roaring fire including a salamander and for good measure an acromantula at the end, together with numerous charms, pit traps and other nasty ideas other teachers must have come up with.
When Harry finally had reached the centre of the maze, he was dirty, had some cuts on his clothes and wanted to end this task. The Triwizard Cup was gleaming brightly in the dark. He walked over cautiously and grabbed the handle. He felt as if a pull was trying to hook with him, but that another force prevented it. Harry realized that somebody had turned the Cup into a portkey and that wards were preventing it from working. He let it fall to the ground and quickly disabled the portkey charm. He didn't want to find out where the portkey would have taken him. He then grabbed it again and carried it through the maze back to the entrance. He really wanted to know what the meaning of this was.
At a certain graveyard, Voldemort was getting impatient. By now, Aaron Potter should have reached the Cup and be transported here through the portkey that the Cup had become. He had managed to imperius the imbecile Fudge to turn the cup. After all, nobody would investigate the Minister of Magic if he had been at fault for the abduction of the Boy-Who-Lived. He would also place Krum under the imperius so that the Beauxbatons champion and Harry Potter would be out of the Tournament to not interfere with his plan. Nothing would go wrong. He would get the blood of Aaron Potter for the ritual and come back to full power.
After four hours of waiting Voldemort knew that something hadn't worked out as it should. By now, somebody should have found the Cup. But there was no victim to use in the ritual. Wormtail was feeling his rage right now. Well, he would have to fall back to plan B. While he wanted to break the protection Aaron Potter had from his grandmother's sacrifice, he wanted to be revived more urgently. And the window of time that the ritual could work was closing. So, he ordered Wormtail to kidnap one of the supporters of the old fool Dumbledore. Wormtail decided that Arthur Weasley would do perfectly, as he knew that the Burrow where the Weasley parents would undoubtedly be right now, didn't have wards. There was little to gain by robbing the place and the Weasleys didn't have the money to pay for wards to protect the family. Even if their oldest son was a cursebreaker and could create them. Without a ward stone to anchor them, all wards he could place would fall over time. So Wormtail took off towards Ottery St. Catchpole.
After an hour, he returned with a bound and gagged man.
"So, you at least managed to do this right, Wormtail. Start the ritual, I am getting impatient." Voldemort ordered.
Wormtail lit the fire under the cauldron and intoned the words for the ritual. He called up bone of the father from Tom Riddle's grave, flesh of the servant by cutting off his hand and cut into Arthur's arm to get blood of the enemy. The light erupting from the cauldron was blinding and once the process was over Voldemort had regained a body.
"At last I have a new body." Voldemort said, inspecting his body.
Wormtail was whimpering on the ground, holding his bleeding stump of an arm.
At Hogwarts Harry was celebrated as the new Triwizard Champion in the Great Hall. Once he had come out of the maze with the Cup, the cheering and applause had started, and it hadn't stopped for solid ten minutes. He had been incredibly happy. The other three champions had politely applauded as well, and Fleur had shown her pride in her boyfriend with a long kiss. The award ceremony was pompous, but what could be expected from a Ministry organized event? After that Harry had told his parents and uncles that the cup had been made into a portkey and Sirius was grinning, satisfied that his wards had protected his godson. The plan must have been to get Aaron to the Cup first and by using a portkey get him away from his normal protection. Well, it had been thwarted and whoever had hoped to catch Aaron must be really frustrated.
Sirius decided to keep monitoring all people that had come in contact with the Cup to find the one who had done the change. For now, everybody was enjoying a great feast in honour of Harry. This was a once in a lifetime event and Harry deserved to have all their attention for his achievement.
The fun only ended when Snape and Karkaroff suddenly grabbed their left arms as if in pain. James noticed and discretely threw a listening charm in their direction. He only heard Karkaroff whimper 'He is back.' It was enough to tell him all he needed to know. Somehow, he didn't know how, Voldemort had got back a body. He cursed under his breath. Well, his home and the homes of his friends were safe. Serious upgrading of the wards after the fall of Voldemort thirteen years ago had ensured that. But they would need to prepare and get the Ministry ready to interfere with Voldemort's plans. Probably Dumbledore would try to use the situation for his own gain to once more be the supposed leader of the light. He needed to make sure that Aaron and Harry didn't get caught up in one of the old man's stupid schemes. Having aged thirteen years since the end of the last war had helped James see things without the naivety of his youth.
Dumbledore's way of doing things didn't work. It left too many Death Eaters free to re-join Voldemort when he came back and that much they had all known after the Dark Mark on Snape's arm never fully vanished. Thanks to Sirius, many supposed imperius victims were found out to be loyal supporters of Voldemort, but there were still too many that got away, like Malfoy and some other, not clearly found-out Death Eaters and unmarked sympathisers. Many that bought their way to freedom, mainly by letting evidence that could have forced an interrogation under veritaserum vanish as soon as Voldemort fell, and were very wealthy. The one worry was Fudge. The man was incapable of doing the necessary things to ensure the country's safety. He would have to gather those that were for not keeping to stunners but taking the Death Eaters down for good. Not dark magic, but who said that one needed it to make sure your defeated opponent stayed out of a fight? Breaking limbs, summoning wands and other things like that worked wonders. He would inform his children tomorrow to put them on their guard. Tonight, it would be unfair towards Harry to spoil the evening.
Dumbledore was pacing in his office. Severus had reported the summoning from Voldemort. That meant the time of waiting for his return was up. The massive problem he faced was that he had no weapon against Voldemort. Aaron Potter was raised by his parents to not blindly follow Dumbledore and think about his actions carefully. His plan had been to have a boy formed to believe in the infallibility of Albus Dumbledore's actions and decisions. That was why he had suggested to have James and Lily concentrate on Aaron and either neglect Harry or send him away to Lily's sister.
Without having an older sibling to share his parents with, Aaron wouldn't have had anybody to rely on at Hogwarts, which had spectacularly backfired. Harry Potter was everything any child could hope for in an older brother. He had been top of his year since his second year, been on the Quidditch team since his first year and was named Quidditch Captain over the older Oliver Wood in his fourth year, thanks to seniority on the team. Harry had played three years on the team compared to Oliver's two years. On top of that, Harry was a natural leader and therefore Minerva had decided to give the badge to Harry and not Oliver.
Next, he had been named prefect in his fifth year and now was head boy. A spectacular career at Hogwarts, only crowned by winning the Triwizard Tournament. Harry was popular all over the school and even some of the smarter Slytherins grudgingly respected him and his power. But this year Harry had openly shown his defiance against Dumbledore and anyone intent on harming his brother or anybody endangering others he was close to. It had gone so far to result in a trial against those that had endangered Gabrielle Delacour at the bottom of the lake. The Ministry had to pay a high fine and all costs for the girl's medical care. Dumbledore himself had lost his two powerful political positions and a lot of political standing. Harry Potter was already rumoured to be on his way to become more powerful than him. That simply couldn't happen. Even Aaron's fame had drifted into the background with his brother's performance in the Tournament. Now Harry had won the Tournament and would continue to gain a reputation.
And he didn't plan to become an auror, which would have been easy to use as an icon for the light, no, the boy had decided to first play Quidditch while studying for becoming a healer. No matter who had praised the job as an auror, Harry wanted to become a healer. He didn't like hurting others and only fought if he couldn't avoid it. And to be honest, none of his displays this year had hurt anybody. Harry had only shown his immense raw power and damaged the pride of several adults and had made clear that he wasn't somebody you wanted to have against you.
At least, as far as he had overheard, Aaron wanted to become an auror, but that was years away and he couldn't be the icon the light needed right now. He would always be in Harry's shadow as long as he was still at school and the Potters would prevent anybody from exploiting their son. He had first hoped that he could use the fact that Harry would graduate this year to get more influence over Aaron, but there were still the Weasley twins here next year. They were part of Harry's group and would make sure to keep an eye on the younger kids.
He had no illusions that Fudge would listen to him when he told him that Voldemort was back. He had no irrefutable proof of that fact and he knew that short of having Fudge see Voldemort in person he would deny everything. Especially as the Ministry was already looking bad for the scandals that had come up over the last year. No, the better way would be letting Sirius prepare the aurors behind Fudge's back. But that included trusting Sirius, who was not part of the people who followed him blindly, which he didn't like at all.
Harry listened to the information his father and Uncle Sirius told them intently. Voldemort was back. They didn't really know how he had managed that, but they couldn't ignore it. They all knew their family would be a target. They were notoriously against all Dark Lords and Voldemort in particular. The one thing that annoyed him most was that now his plans would have to be changed. It would probably be too dangerous to professionally play Quidditch. At least in England. He would have to accept the offer of another European team. Well, there was a French team that wanted to contract him as the seeker. It would be nice to be closer to Fleur.
He would also need to continue and increase his defensive training. That wouldn't be too difficult. Apart from training, he could plan his time like he wanted to. He would have to enter discussions about his contract to get the details ironed out, but normally he wouldn't have any problems. After all, his success in the Tournament and his known skill in the air would make him a magnet for spectators of the team he signed up for. He could only hope that Voldemort wouldn't attack in another country. Probably not for some time, but once he had regained strength after being a wraith for over a decade that could change. Well, he would use the time he had. He wouldn't risk people if Voldemort decided to attack his matches.
One relief was that Voldemort wouldn't have an easy time recruiting new Death Eaters, as he didn't have many of the old ones to fall back upon. They were mostly at Azkaban. A few had managed to get away, but their numbers were much lower than they could have been, had his uncle not done everything in his powers to cut down everybody that was found with a dark mark, or suspected to be a Voldemort supporter. Azkaban was a point on the list that needed to be fortified quickly, as the dementors had sided with Voldemort in the past, and they could expect them to do it again, which made leaving Voldemort's Death Eaters under their watch highly stupid. The problem was that Fudge wouldn't see it like that.
He watched his brother and sisters. They were much more worried. Aaron would be one of the top targets. His survival and role in Voldemort's body loss were known everywhere. His father just told them that their training would be greatly upped over the summer to help them get away when they got into a dangerous situation. They would also all get an emergency portkey, which they were to use if they needed it. He got one too, but he could defend himself better, so he wouldn't need it as much.
His mother was already mentally making plans how to fight against the Death Eaters and how long it would probably take for them to get organised again. He knew the look on her face. She always wore it when she was planning something big. There were many things to consider; especially making sure that those that would be targeted could be protected. In the last war, too many had died because their homes had been unprotected. Harry knew that his parents had found several ways to secure homes and his father was making a lot of money with that. Warding required power and not many wizards had the raw power to create good wards that could be fed to higher levels over time by average wizards and witches living under them.
The basic instruction for the next months was nobody went anywhere without informing their parents or another adult, Harry counted as an adult now, and nowhere outside of protected estates without adult supervision. As the grounds of Potter Manor were big and included a full Quidditch pitch that wasn't too much of a sacrifice. Black Manor was similar as was Longbottom Manor, though without the Quidditch pitch.
The two Delacour daughters were shocked to hear that the dark lord that had terrorized Britain a decade ago had managed to return. Their parents told them that it was relatively sure that he wouldn't come to France, but they should be careful, especially Fleur, as she was Harry Potter's girlfriend. Fleur knew that Harry wouldn't stop living and decided to floo over to Potter Manor to talk to him about the immediate plans. Their parents only reminded them to be careful when they went out until things got worse and the problems reached France.
Harry was very happy to see Fleur stepping out of the floo. She had called to ask if he had time to talk about the new situation. He greeted her with a hug and a fiery kiss. She happily returned it. It took a few minutes before they separated. Harry led Fleur to his room after letting her greet his parents who were in the library looking up warding schemes they wanted to promote in the next months.
Fleur was impressed with the big and bright room. There were two posters on the wall, one of Harry's favourite Quidditch team, the Appleby Arrows, and one was a photo enlarged to poster size of his closest friends. His firebolt was in a secured vitrine and the main colour scheme was red accents on white walls. She had thought he might have gone with the colours of his house at Hogwarts, but except the accents on the curtains and the bed sheets there wasn't much. He had a big bookshelf with medical books that filled a whole wall of his room.
"I see you 'ave already begun to collect books for your future career, 'Arry," she commented.
"Well, I knew for some time that I wanted to become a healer, Fleur," shrugged Harry, "I saw no reason to not get a head start."
"Oui, zat's reasonable. So, 'ow are you doing?" she asked.
"Quite well. While the situation is dangerous, it could have been much worse. And I am good at defending myself. The one thing to irk me is that my choice in Quidditch teams is more limited now than I had expected. Any team in England would be too easy a target for Death Eater attacks, once Voldemort manages to get enough mobilised and recruited. While Uncle Sirius and Amelia Bones have the DMLE organised quite well, the stupid Budget cuts for the DMLE don't make things easy. The aurors are good and well-trained, with a bit of training they will be ready for fights against Death Eaters, but their numbers are low," explained Harry.
"Why is zat? I would zink zat ze aurors should be a 'igh priority for any Ministry to keep strong," asked Fleur.
"Fudge is a corrupt bastard and was bought by those that profit from a toothless DMLE. And Dumbledore didn't do enough to curb his stupidity, even if it should have been his duty as Chief Warlock of the Wizengamot. The CW normally is tasked with controlling the Minister, to prevent that one abuses his position badly. After the last war, many people wanted to pretend that everything was okay again. They wanted the illusion of safety. After all, the previous decade had been dominated by terror. While Crouch was easily convinced by Uncle Sirius and the Longbottoms to not allow any suspected Death Eater to get away without a trial under veritaserum, Bagnold wanted to make it appear that the Ministry had everything under control in a way that allowed to cut back the war-time staff of the DMLE.
"That was the beginning. Not to mention that she needed money for rebuilding, as people voiced their dismay about it taking too long for things to be repaired. Fudge only continued that after he was elected. I know that Uncle Sirius and Madam Bones are working tirelessly all the time to prevent more cuts to their budget. Thankfully, there are enough smart people that understand that further reduction of the DMLE budget would be a huge mistake. The dark faction at the Wizengamot has failed three times in the past two years to get a shift of money away from the DMLE passed. Still, the hiring of new aurors has dropped to dangerous levels, if one wants to keep up certain training standards, not to mention ensure that older aurors aren't forced to work in the field all the time."
"I see. Did you already decide on a team to sign up for?" asked Fleur.
"Not yet. With England out of the question for now, as I won't endanger the spectators like that, the foreign teams are at the top of the list. I have offers for Rouge Partisans Paris and St. Isabelle Lyon in France for example," he told her.
"Would you consider playing in France?" she wanted to know.
"Certainly. I speak French fluently after all, and it would allow me to see you more often," he smiled at her.
"Very true, 'Arry," she approved and showed it with a kiss, "You might also be in luck to study wiz a 'ealer at ze leading l'hôpital in Paris, should you choose zem. L'hôpital de la Saint Caterine is famous in France."
"It is certainly something I have been thinking about," admitted Harry.
They continued talking for a while, before they switched to kissing and caressing each other again.
Fred and George Weasley looked at their former team captain. Contrary to other members of their family, they had invitations to Potter Manor, and they had decided that it would be important to see what Harry wanted to tell them. Harry had taken them to one of the salons, where he could activate privacy charms.
"Fred, George, I have an important mission for you for next year. As you know, I won't be at the school anymore. In fact, I won't be in England except for vacations," revealed Harry.
"Where will you be, oh our fearless leader?" asked Fred.
"I have signed up with Rouge Partisans Paris, after I worked out an agreement with L'hopital de la Saint Caterine for my healer training. It's too dangerous for me to play Quidditch for an English team right now, outside of the National team. Too much temptation for Voldemort to attack there," revealed Harry.
"True that," nodded George gravely.
The Weasleys were quite subdued, due to the attack on their father. He had barely survived the injuries given to him. They didn't know what had happened, but he had been badly injured when he managed to apparate to St. Mungo's. Somebody had also obliviated his memories of the past week from him. The healers suspected that some magical creature was involved, as several of the cuts he had seemed to have been caused by talons of some kind. Sirius Black suspected that somebody had tried to dispose of their father in a way that would disguise their actions. Making it look as if he had run afoul some dangerous creature, if it had killed him, would have worked. It was luck that he had escaped at all. And only due to that, they knew that he had been obliviated. He was still at St. Mungo's, recovering.
"Our parents have agreed to help Dumbledore in fighting Voldemort. We don't believe that this is a good idea. Dumbledore is an idiot and doesn't have good strategies for a war," stated Fred, "But any of our arguments were slapped down by Mum, who is a diehard Dumbledore follower."
"She also refuses to tell any of us anything that they are informed about. We are too young, according to her," grumbled George, "We are of age, but she doesn't care."
"Well, I know your abilities, and I want you to use them for things beyond playing pranks," stated Harry.
"What do you have in mind, Harry?" they asked together, looking intrigued.
"Thanks to my parents and uncles telling me how the last war was like, I have a good understanding of tactical weaknesses that Voldemort and his Death Eaters liked to exploit last time. Mainly, terrorizing the civilians, as they rarely manage to even put up basic defences. Shield charms are already a problem for those not trained properly in DADA, which due to the ever-funny Professor roulette comes down to a wide-spread problem. No year has ever had proper teachers for all seven years of their education there since the sixties, I think. You know yourself how badly our selection was. If not for my family teaching me at home, I wouldn't have managed to excel in that class."
"True that, the fact that you assisted us with learning those spells was a major reason why we ever passed the DADA OWL," nodded Fred.
"So, what do you need us to do next year? We had been thinking about dropping out earlier, to get our shop started. We don't really need NEWTs for a joke shop," started George.
"But we realise that Mum would murder us should we try it," sighed Fred.
"Not to mention that we still haven't managed to get the starting capital we calculated we would need together."
"We made good progress last year with sales of our first products, in large parts thanks to the larger customer base with all the Beauxbatons and Durmstrang students"
"But we still need about five hundred galleons more, to really make the shop take off," they explained with their usual twin speech ping-pong.
"What I want you two to do is using the time at Hogwarts to create all kinds of items that the normal witch or wizard can use to protect him- or herself with. If they can't use the spells themselves, it would help a lot to have an item they can carry on their person taking over the part for them. Like an automated shield charm, something to place a disillusionment charm on them and so on. I'm sure, your creative minds will be up to the task," Harry explained his idea.
"Sounds intriguing," agreed Fred, "And it could have double applications later on for pranks."
"The money to be made with that would also be great. And the customer base for serious products would be much larger than just for pranks," nodded George.
"So, you are in?" asked Harry.
"Sure," confirmed both twins.
"Great. I have already talked to Dad and Uncle Sirius. They agree to invest into your shop, as I could tell them the basic idea you had. Condition for that is that you can show at least four NEWTs each," stated Harry, "Once you have them, two thousand galleons are yours to use for the starting phase of your shop. I will invest five hundred galleons myself, immediately, to allow you to work on the products we spoke about. Not to mention that I want you at Hogwarts next year to keep an eye on both my siblings and the children of Death Eaters. Probably their families will be contacted, even if most Death Eaters were sent to Azkaban.
"I don't trust Dumbledore at all, and while Aaron has made great progress in his development, Dumbledore has an unhealthy interest in him. And Dahlia and Jasmine are soft targets that could be used by either side. I would rather have people I fully trust keeping an eye on things and informing me if Dumbledore tries his usual tricks."
"We can do that. It would be good to curb Ron's and Ginny's stupid ideas as well. Ever since Ron has discovered hormones, he has become even more annoying."
"And Ginny still believes that tripe Mum always told her about marrying Aaron."
"As if he wouldn't run for the hills if she or any of the other fangirls tried to get into his pants."
"Very true. Not to mention what Hermione would do," nodded Harry.
"That one can be scary!" agreed both twins.
"Well, she is idolising my Mum," revealed Harry, "Probably one reason why Aaron decided to go with Sylveena as a girlfriend over her. He would feel strange if his girlfriend reminded him too much of Mum. So better be careful and don't test any of your products on first-years. Secure your backs, then she can't get too bad."
The twins shuddered. Neither of them would be insane enough to challenge a witch that idolised Lily Potter.
"Understood, no aggravating Hermione," they promised, "how do we keep in contact with you without anybody finding out?"
"Two-way mirrors. My Dad and Uncle Sirius used them when they were at Hogwarts. I will give you one part and keep the other on my person. That way can't be intercepted, like owl post would be," answered Harry easily.
The twins grinned. That would be a great way to keep nosy busybodies out of the loop. Especially their mother, who had all but demanded that they helped Dumbledore keep an eye on Aaron at school next year. As if they would ever spy for the headmaster.
James and Lily watched how their oldest son was taken to France by the portkey. He would be starting his training with his new Quidditch team in two days and wanted to set up his apartment before he had to follow his new schedule. They were very proud of him, but they would miss having him around. The game had changed, but this time around, their chances to actually beat Voldemort before he could become too much of a problem were much better than last time. They knew he was back, which he had tried to prevent being found out. The future was going to be difficult, but as a family, they were sure to manage whatever was thrown into their path.
They wouldn't shy back from protecting their loved ones, no matter what Dumbledore might say about some of their methods. He had tried to appeal to them to re-join the Order of the Phoenix, but they had refused. Dumbledore was inefficient as a leader, and they wouldn't continue letting his pacifistic opinions let their comrades be killed. No, this time, they were more experienced, and it was better the opponent went down permanently, than their loved ones being killed. They had lost too much in the last war, and they wouldn't let that happen again.
Their children that still went to Hogwarts were warned to not follow any instructions of Dumbledore and Aaron got more training in how to work around the manipulative old man, who still was fixated on a stupid prophecy. As if he should be counting on a teenager to solve all their problems. This conflict had been created by the older generations. It wasn't up to the children to fight. And they would do all they could to prevent that Aaron fell into the same trap they had fallen into when they were at school. While his older brother might not be present anymore, Harry had given Aaron four years during which he didn't have to worry too much about the old man, and could just concentrate on his schooling, even if the last school year had been very stressful.
But they had cut off a lot of influence the headmaster had once wielded. Hogwarts was a school, not a political playground. Thankfully, they had also ensured that the DADA position would be filled with a competent teacher for the next year. Alice Longbottom had decided to take up the position, which she had cleared with both Sirius and Amelia Bones. Dumbledore wouldn't find a competent candidate anytime soon and having a pair of eyes at the school to look out for suspicious events would relieve the parents a lot. Alice would be on loan from the DMLE, supposedly because Amelia had enough of the constantly dropping DADA results from Hogwarts, which made it really hard for her to find suitable personnel for her department.
After a year, as the curse was a real thing, she would switch with another auror, to circumvent the curse hitting her. This way, they expected to ensure that Hogwarts would churn out more competent graduates. The game might have changed, but they were up to the challenge. Dumbledore and Voldemort better looked out, because the Potters and their allies didn't plan to lie down and let them win. Neither of them would do the right thing for their country. And they didn't believe that 'For the Greater Good' was a good argument to neglect things as much as Dumbledore did.
That's it for this story. Probably there will be another sequel in the future, but I can't say when it will happen. Perhaps another Christmas Story in the future :)