There's No Place Like Home
An Open Letter to Wizarding Britain?
By Albert Collins
It is not often that such a missive is received here at The Daily Prophet, certainly one not so brazen or direct as the one delivered to our offices today. In short, our editor was reluctant to publish it, but in the interest of public safety, he has chosen to do so.
Hoax or legitimate, that is for the Department of Magical Law Enforcement to decide.
To the citizens of Magical Britain,
I write to you directly so that you may understand the threat that faces you. For now, you do not know my name, but you have seen a hint of what I am capable of.
What happened in Diagon Alley was just the beginning, a taste of the power that I wield.
My supporters are numerous and live amongst you. They could be a neighbour, a brother, or even a father. You would never know, but I assure you, there are many that I can call upon to carry out my will.
For too long, the threat of mudbloods and muggles have hung over us, but we say that it can no longer be.
It is us that founded our most wonderful society, and the outsiders have invaded, attempt to change our traditions, and usurp the power of their betters.
We say, no more.
I speak to all of you now.
Surrender to me, submit to your betters, and then the bloodshed will stop.
If you do not, I will set upon you things that haunt the most terrifying of nightmares.
We will come for you in the night, we will take you from the streets. Not even the Ministry of Magic can keep you safe.
Submit yourselves, and you will be spared.
That was the article that wizarding Britain had woken up to the morning after the incident in Diagon Alley, and two other attacks had followed in as many days.
Harry's anger had continued to be palpable, his fury aimed at Tom and Minister Jenkins for not calling a meeting of the Wizengamot. She had done so, however, when Harry had personally visited her and warned the woman of what they faced.
At first, the Minister had been rather dismissive and had delegated rooting out Voldemort and his supporters to Crouch who underestimated what it was he faced.
Jenkins had eventually relented, and Harry now found himself stalking towards the Wizengamot chambers to grace the governing body with his rare presence.
He attended the gatherings only when an issue of import was to be discussed, mostly because he found the others to be rather dull, and so his peers understood that he was invested in the issue at hand when he deigned to come in person.
His entrance never failed to garner the attention of the lords and ladies of Britain, and today was no different, his severe expression eliciting several bouts of whispers amongst them.
Taking his seat, his gaze to swept across the room, and he allowed it to rest upon a select few individuals, all of whom sat close to one another in the same section as Arcturus who shot him a questioning look.
"You look as though you mean business," Charlus commented amusedly from Harry's left, his smirk morphing into a frown as Harry merely nodded in response.
"I do," he confirmed.
Charlus's eyebrows rose as he leaned back in his seat and Minister Jenkins stood to address the room.
Tapping her gavel on the top of podium, the room fell silent, and she cleared her throat.
"I've called you to gather today to discuss the recent spate of attacks allegedly perpetrated by this Lord Voldemort," she began grimly. "His threat is something that we as a body must take seriously. Over the past few days, I have been in talks with Bartemius Crouch, along with the head of the auror department who both assure me they are doing all they can to put a stop to these attacks."
"And what exactly are they doing, Minister?" Lord Bones questioned.
"From today, there will be a much stronger auror presence across the country," Jenkins answered. "We have a team dedicated to locating this self-styled lord, and we will be producing a Ministry approved pamphlet on how to protect your homes sufficiently."
The Wizengamot members nodded approvingly, though there were some that did not appear to be happy.
Harry was among the latter, and without being prompted to do so, he stood, and the room fell silent.
"As much as I and my peers respect your intentions, Minister, I fear that they will not be enough."
"And you have a better proposal, Evans?" Lord Lestrange snarked.
"That is Baron Evans to you, Lestrange," Harry bit back, "and yes, but first, I have some information to share that I'm sure many of you will find enlightening."
"Information?" the Minister asked warily.
Harry nodded as he removed several sheets of parchment from within his robes.
"I'm not sure how many of you are aware, but I like to keep an ear to the ground of what is going on in Britain. I was made a Baron of this land, given the responsibility to protect it, and I take that responsibility more seriously than anything else."
Some of the members of the Wizengamot murmured amongst themselves at his declaration.
"For the past few years, whispers of what is now unfolding have reached me, and I have been preparing," Harry explained. "Clandestine meetings have been held, some attended by those amongst us now, but let us not name any names and point fingers. I will simply say this; if you have aligned yourself with Lord Voldemort, you had better reconsider your decision, because as the protector of this land, I am coming for every single one of you."
"You can't just make idle threats in here, Evans!" Lord Lestrange growled, eliciting nods of agreement from those seated around him.
"When our country is under threat, Lestrange, I can do as I please to keep it safe," Harry responded. "My title was bestowed upon me for that very reason. I am not beholden to the Ministry to do their bidding. My responsibility is to every man, woman, and child of Britain, and it is them that I answer to."
Minister Jenkins nodded uneasily, a look of concern marring her features.
"Anyway, what I decide to do is neither here nor there. I have given fair warning to those associated with Lord Voldemort and his movement who have proven themselves a significant threat against the citizens I promised to protect. Now, for Voldemort himself. For those of you that are choosing to support him, I urge you to listen to what I say next."
Harry paused whilst some of the lords and ladies muttered unhappily, but there were more expressions of approval than the former.
"You have aligned yourselves with a wanted murderer, a false lord who hides behind a false name like the snivelling coward he is," Harry continued. "You can quote me on my exact words," he added to the members of the media in attendance. "Lord Voldemort is none other than Tom Riddle, the same boy that murdered Armando Dippet and Myrtle Warren before fleeing Britain more than twenty-five years ago."
The uproar that followed the revelation was tumultuous, and even Lestrange and the rest of his ilk were shocked.
"Do you have proof of this, Baron Evans?" Minister Jenkins asked.
Harry nodded as he drew his wand and repeated the feat of the sixteen-year-old Tom Riddle in the Chamber of Secrets, rearranging the letters to spell out his chosen alias.
"That doesn't prove it is him!" Lord Rosier called.
"It doesn't," Harry agreed, "but Tom Riddle, like me, is a parselmouth and he claims to be the heir of Slytherin. That may be correct. He is the son of the late Merope Gaunt who birthed him, but his father is a muggle that shared his name before Tom murdered him and the rest of the family in the summer of 1944."
Those gathered in the stand of the more traditionalist families were not pleased by that revelation, something Harry took no small amount of glee in.
"You can choose to ignore me if you wish to, but now is not the time for dissent amongst us. The fact is, Tom Riddle and those that have chosen to follow him have already murdered almost twenty people in cold blood, and we must be seen to be acting accordingly."
"Acting accordingly?" Jenkins pressed.
"These men and women should be shown no mercy," Harry declared. "They have proven themselves willing to mete out lethal force, and they should expect the same in return. They are murderers, and more will die if we do not take drastic action."
"You can't be considering this, Minister," Lord Malfoy called.
"Those who have nothing to hide have nothing to fear," Harry answered before Jenkins could.
Much to Harry's surprise, Crouch nodded as he stood.
"I must say that Baron Evans and I rarely see eye to eye, but I am in agreement. This threat must be nipped in the bud before any other innocents are harmed by this group. They are terrorists, and if this Voldemort, Riddle, or whatever his name is has as many supporters as he claims, we could well find ourselves in a civil war."
Minister Jenkins worried her lower lip as she looked towards her advisors.
"This is not a decision that can be made immediately or lightly," she replied. "I wish to prevent further incidents, but should we not strive to be better?"
"Taking a moral high ground will only result in more deaths," Harry returned darkly. "Innocents will die, as will our aurors that are unfortunate enough to be set upon by Riddle and his group."
Jenkins deflated and appeared to have aged a decade in the last few minutes.
"This is not a decision that I can make alone," she acknowledged. "This is something that must be discussed and done so officially. I would ask you, Barty, to draft the required legislation."
"That could take a number of days," Crouch pointed out. "More attacks could follow between now and then."
"Then for the time being, auror patrols will be increased in accordance with their need," she decided.
"And who shall be left with the blood on their hands, Minister?" Harry asked. "Will you take responsibility for the deaths that will come?"
The woman blanched and swallowed deeply.
"What would you have me do, Baron Evans?"
"Grant the ability for the aurors to defend themselves," Harry urged. "Grant every man and woman the same right to defend their homes and their lives."
Jenkins looked around the room, her position not one many would envy in a moment like this.
"For that to be allowed, we would need to agree as a majority," she murmured. "It is not a decision I can take sole ownership of."
"Then call for a vote," Harry suggested.
Jenkins released a deep breath.
"Those in favour of temporarily allowing the aurors to use lethal force against Lord Voldemort and his followers?"
Other than around a dozen, every wand in the room was raised in agreement.
None were shown, those that were against the implementation savvy enough to not do so.
"Then as a majority, the temporary measure is approved until Barty submits the official legislation to make it permanently official," Jenkins declared, tapping her gavel smartly on the top of her podium. "If there is nothing else, I draw this meeting to a close."
Harry nodded satisfactorily, the reputation he had cultivated for himself over the years proving to be useful when he needed it most.
With what he had come to achieve done, Harry headed towards the exit, pausing as a voice called out to him.
"Baron Evans, are you happy with the result of the meeting today?"
Harry turned to be faced by an eager group of journalists, and he shook his head.
"No, I'm not happy," he answered. "It is a sad state of affairs when measures like this need to be approved, but I am content now that there are those that may think twice before attempting to attack members of the public."
"How certain are you that Tom Riddle is Lord Voldemort?" another questioned.
"There is no doubt in my mind that they are one and the same," Harry responded.
"If you could say anything to him now, what would that be."
Harry's nostrils flared as a surge of anger burned within him.
"You can't hide from me forever, Tom," he said darkly. "I remember what you have done, and I am coming for you. There is no escape, and I will show you as much mercy as you have shown those you have murdered."
The journalists were stunned into silence by his words, and Harry took the opportunity to leave the chambers, only to be intruded upon once more.
"So, where do we begin?" Charlus questioned as he fell into step with Harry. "We both know the Ministry will balls this up."
"They will," Arcturus sighed. "Jenkins will bottle it. She hasn't got the guts to pass that legislation, she's just buying time."
Harry nodded his agreement.
Somehow, whatever bill was put forward by Crouch would never be ratified, but Harry had planned for that already.
"Gather the old crowd, as many as you can find," he instructed.
"We're going to war?" Charlus asked.
Harry nodded severely.
"I think we've got one more in us," Arcturus snorted. "It will be like old times."
"Only this one is on our doorstep," Harry pointed out.
The other two men sobered at the realisation.
"We'll gather them," Arcturus murmured. "They'll answer the call."
"Jenkins and Crouch won't like it," Charlus pointed out.
"What Jenkins and Crouch don't know won't hurt them," Harry replied, eliciting matching smirks from the two men.
Nursing a cup of coffee at his parents' kitchen table, Jack yawned and took a sip of piping liquid, the burning sensation preventing him from falling asleep where he sat.
Three attacks in three days meant that he had gotten next to no sleep, and it didn't help that he couldn't shift the images of the broken, mutilated bodies of the men and women that had been left behind.
What was unfolding was concerning to say the least, and even his usually unshakeable mother was not herself.
Jack had not been alive during the war against Grindelwald, but he imagined her demeanour had been similar then when his father was away fighting on the continent.
"Why don't you get some sleep," she urged, pulling Jack from his thoughts.
He shook his head and took another sip of his coffee.
"No, Dad said he needed to speak with me when he's back. I can wait."
His mother gave him a tight smile, though she could not conceal her worry.
"Is this what it was like before?" Jack asked.
Without hesitation, his mother nodded.
"I've spent much of my life worrying about your father in one way or another," she snorted humourlessly. "The man is a magnet for trouble, and if it doesn't find him, he has a way of finding it."
Jack chuckled as nodded his agreement, standing as his father entered the kitchen.
"What's happening, Dad?"
Nothing was said whilst the man poured himself a coffee and took a seat.
"The aurors have been granted temporary leave to use lethal force against him and his followers," Harry explained. "It won't last. Too many will soon morally object or the other side will find an old law of sorts that means permission will be rescinded. It could take months or years for that to be changed."
"So, it will just be as it is?"
His father shook his head and Jack frowned thoughtfully.
"Whatever the Ministry says, you will use whatever force you deem necessary," he instructed. "If that means I have to break into Azkaban to get you out, then so be it."
Jack leaned back in his chair as he stared at the man.
"Do you think they would kill aurors?"
"Without hesitation," he answered severely.
Jack released a deep breath, doing his best to ignore the expression of worry his mother wore.
"Your safety is paramount, Jack," his father spoke once more. "I do not care what you have to do, who you have to piss off, you make sure that you get home safely after every shift. Understood?"
Jack nodded and his father offered him a tired smile.
"Good, now come with me, there's something I want you to have."
Jack followed his father from the kitchen and down the stairs into the basement only a short walk away.
"What I'm going to give you is a very dangerous artefact to possess," Harry explained. "You can tell no one about it, not your mother, not another soul."
"What is it?" Jack asked curiously.
He watched as his father removed a wand from within his sleeve, not the one Jack had seen him use over the years.
This one was ivory coloured with a set of unrecognisable runes etched into the side.
"This is a very special wand, Jack," his father explained. "Do you remember The Tale of the Three Brothers?"
Jack remembered the story well.
It had been one of his favourites growing up.
"Are you telling me that is the deathstick?" he chuckled in realisation.
His father nodded and Jack sobered immediately, his eyes bulging.
"Where did you get it from?" he whispered.
"It has had many masters throughout its existence, and before me, it belonged to Gellert Grindelwald. I took it after I killed him," his father revealed. "My intention was to destroy it before I died, but I think it would serve you best. Remember, tell no one of it, and when the time is right, I want you to promise that you will destroy it."
Jack nodded solemnly as he eyed the wand.
"If it is so powerful, why don't you use it?" he asked curiously.
"Because my own wand is a much better match," his father explained simply. "I have achieved some incredible things with it, and having overcome so much adversity, things that you wouldn't believe, we share a bond like no other."
Jack wasn't going to pretend to understand what had just been said.
"Disarm me," Harry instructed.
Hesitantly, Jack did so, and snatched the fabled wand from the air.
Immediately, he felt a wave of cold magic wash over him, chilling him to the bone. It was as though the wand was assessing his worthiness, and though the cold remained, it became almost a welcoming feeling.
"Bloody hell," he gasped as he felt the power of the artefact running through his veins.
"Try it out," his father urged, gesturing to one of the training dummies.
He looked on curiously as Jack cast a blasting charm, the younger man's eyes widening at the results and rush of energy he felt escape him.
The dummy was reduced to a pile of splinters that had been strewn about the room, and as Jack looked upon the wand in wonder, he could only shake his head in disbelief.
"Wow," he whispered.
His father nodded his agreement.
"The wand is powerful, but it is not unbeatable," the man warned. "Many mans folly whilst owning it is believing it to be infallible. Do not make the same mistake, Jack."
"I won't," Jack assured him, meeting the unnerving gaze that swept over him.
When he was satisfied, his father deflated.
"There is one other thing I need you to promise me."
"Anything," Jack replied.
Harry gave him a sad smile.
"If you ever come across Lord Voldemort, I want you to run."
"Run," his father confirmed. "For as good as you have become, and even with the wand, it will not be enough. Promise me, Jack."
It was so unlike the man to ask such a thing of him, so Jack understood the seriousness of the request.
"You're going to kill him, aren't you?"
"Only I can," his father answered ominously, "not because I am the only one skilled enough to do so, or for any more glory to be heaped upon me, but because it is the truth. I'm asking you to trust me Jack, as I am trusting you."
Once more, Jack was at a loss, but he would not deny his father.
The man had never steered him wrong, and Jack would not doubt him now.
"You can trust me, dad," he assured the man as he pulled him into a hug. "I'll run if I have to."
"Good boy," Harry praised. "Do you think you'll be able to make it to Rosa's game on Tuesday?"
Jack sighed as he shook his head.
"Unlikely," he replied apologetically. "I'll probably be on shift."
His father nodded his understanding.
"Then I'll make sure I get you some of the stadium popcorn you like."
Jack rolled his eyes.
"I'm not ten anymore, dad."
"No, but you're still my boy, no matter how big you think you are."
Jack could only laugh in response.
The reputation his father had was something he could never live up to, and Jack had accepted that long ago.
Still, the reputation was not the man he had grown up with.
Harry Evans was revered by many for his achievements and his incredible ability with magic, but to Jack, he had been the man to take him to Quidditch matches, who taught him how to fly, and was just as excited as his children on Christmas morning when he would watch them open their presents.
Harry Evans was his father and had been a great one.
That was who he was to Jack.
Not the man who defeated Grindelwald, or slayed a dragon, but his father; the kind, caring man who would do anything for his children just to see them smile.
He had not called a meeting of his followers, and Lord Voldemort had wondered why they had intruded upon him en mass, but as he was handed and read the morning edition of The Daily Prophet, he understood why.
How had Evans identified him so quickly?
Had the Dark Lord underestimated the man's brilliance.
For a moment, he chided himself for using an anagram of his own name to create his new alias.
Still, a smirk tugged at his lips, belying the fury that he felt within.
'I'm coming for you, Tom…'
Evans had the audacity to not only undermine him, but to threaten him also.
How dare the foolish man do so.
Lord Voldemort shook his head of those thoughts.
Evans would get what was coming to him, but first, he needed to handle his disgruntled followers that were looking at him expectantly.
"Well?" Nott demanded impatiently. "Is what Evans said true?"
Lord Voldemort nodded simply, eliciting furious whispers amongst the lords and ladies within the room.
"He knows, or he has his suspicions we are involved," Lestrange growled irritably. "How could he know?"
"Because Evans is a much smarter man than any of you give him credit for," Nott replied. "He is no fool, nor is he a weak man. You assured us you can defeat him. Do you stand by your word?"
Voldemort narrowed his eyes at the man before he smiled.
"Evans would not know where to begin in killing me," he assured Nott confidently. "He will die by my hand."
The lords and ladies whispered amongst themselves once more.
"Not that any of you are in a position to change your minds," the Dark Lord continued. "You have pledged yourselves to me, have accepted my mark. I would prefer that you comply with my wishes."
"And if we refuse?" Nott asked haughtily.
"Then all that awaits is either Azkaban when your part in the attacks is revealed, or death at the hands of Evans. It is only me that stands between either of those fates for all of you. However, I wish for allegiance to continue where it began. We have a vision of what magical Britain should be, and I would like for us to achieve that together."
"Like we have a choice," Nott muttered.
"There is always a choice," Voldemort countered, "but some are much less pleasant and unrewarding than others. Keep the faith you have shown in me, and what you reap will outweigh any sacrifice you believe you have made."
"But you are a half-blood?" Nott pressed.
Voldemort nodded unashamedly.
"I am," he confirmed, "but also the rightful heir of Slytherin. You have seen my power for yourselves. Do you truly doubt me now?"
His question was met with muttering, but none spoke against him any further, and the Dark Lord stood.
"Perhaps another demonstration of what we can achieve is needed," he mused aloud.
"Another attack?" Lestrange asked excitedly.
Voldemort nodded as he pointed to an advertisement next to where the article regarding him had been printed.
"A Quidditch match?" Nott asked suspiciously.
"And whose daughter plays for the Holyhead Harpies?" Voldemort replied with a smirk.
The lords and ladies looked at him in disbelief, most having been in Slytherin and respecting a more cunning approach.
Evidently, they had not expected something so brazen.
"Are you certain of this, my lord?" Nott questioned.
"I am certain of everything I do, my friend," Voldemort replied with a smirk.
Rosa added the finishing touches to her braid, her preferred style whilst she was playing. Her hair was long and thick and would blow in her face if she did not keep it tamed.
She loved her hair.
It was the one thing that set her apart from the rest of the family who all had a tone of deep brown bordering on black.
"So, you are going ahead with another season?" Julian questioned as he entered their bedroom. "I thought we discussed this."
Rosa rolled her eyes at her husband.
"No, Julian, you discussed it," she replied irritably.
The man's jaw tightened as he glared at her.
He was bitter that his own Quidditch career was on the decline.
Julian was still the seeker for the French national team, but that position would soon be taken by another. His form was lapsing, and he couldn't keep up with the younger players.
Rosa had no such problems.
If anything, her star continued to rise.
"I thought that we were going to have children," Julian grumbled.
"And we will," Rosa sighed. "When I'm finished playing."
"When will that be?"
"When I say that I'm done."
Julian snorted humourlessly and Rosa released a deep breath.
"There is no rush. My Aunt Dorea didn't have her son until she was forty. I'm not even thirty-two yet. Charlus didn't mind waiting."
"So, I have to be just like Charlus Potter?" Julian snapped. "Or would you prefer if I was just like your father?"
Rosa chuckled as she shook her head and stood.
"Oh, my sweet husband, you could never compare to either of them," she deadpanned. "You've been nothing but a complaining, whiny, entitled bastard these past few years. You have a very easy life, Julian. You have nothing to be bitter about. My father fought a war, had to be away from his family, and watch many of his friends die, but did he complain half as much as you do? No, he got on with it and made something of himself. If I remember correctly, was it not him that liberated your country? It was, he killed Grindelwald and set your people free. If it wasn't for him, you and your family might not even be here!"
Her voice had risen as she vented, and Julian only grew angrier as she spoke.
"That's what this is all about, isn't it?" he growled. "No one could ever be good enough for you."
Rosa shook her head as she deflated.
"You were good enough," she countered. "All I ever asked was that I be allowed to play Quidditch, and you had no problem with it until you decided it was no longer convenient for you. What is it, Julian? Is it that my career is going so well whilst you are wilting away? That is not my fault! Instead of smiling and waving for the cameras, why don't you get your arse out on the Quidditch pitch and practice?"
"I am still the best seeker in France," Julian said hotly.
"Barely," Rosa snorted, and her husband's cheeks reddened in a mixture of anger and embarrassment.
His fist clenched, and for a moment, Rosa thought he might strike her, but as she flicked her wand into her hand, he stilled.
"If you ever laid a hand on me, it would be the last thing you did," she warned.
"Your father would come for me," he mocked.
"He would," Rosa replied simply, "but he wouldn't get the chance. I would make sure you never raised a hand to anyone again myself," she added as she stepped forward.
Julian stood tall, but Rosa did not back down and slapped him hard across the face.
Julian staggered and looked at her in shock.
"I am Rosa fucking Evans," Rosa snarled, "It seems that you have forgotten that."
With a final glare at her husband, she swept from the room wondering just how her life had been entangled with such a pathetic man.
It hadn't always been this way.
Julian had once been sweet and charming, but he had never gotten over his jealousy of Rosa's father and the other men she had in her life. They were strong and accomplished men, and it wasn't as though she had ever expected any to live up to them, but she deserved to be respected and allowed to do what made her happy.
Rosa was tired of Julian's unnecessary envy and what he had become.
He was no longer the man she had fallen in love with, not even a shadow of what he had once been.
These were the days that Harry had come to live for. Other than Jack who was on shift, his entire family were with him to watch Rosa play in her first game of the Quidditch season.
Iris and Dahlia were by his side, both wearing Harpies' scarves, and Jasmine was stood next to them with Bella and James.
Harry may or may not have taken them from the castle, but it wasn't as though either of their parents would have minded.
Much to his relief, his three youngest daughters had returned to England the year before, having grown tired of travelling and wanting to settle down.
The twins were both working at the Ministry in the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures, and Jasmine had started her own business as a cursebreaker.
Under Harry's guidance, each of them had also accumulated their own wealth through investing as he continued to.
Through his own fortune, his children would never have any financial concerns, but he was pleased to see that none of them had a poor work ethic, something he and Minerva had both instilled within them as they grew.
"When will it start?" James asked impatiently.
Bella rolled her eyes at the boy.
"You're so impatient, Potter."
James narrowed his eyes at the girl and Harry shot him a warning look before he could make a comment that would land him in Bella's bad books.
For the most part, the two got along, but James took too much joy in annoying the older girl whenever he could, and Bella always took the bait.
Thankfully, the commentator announced the teams before that could happen, and Harry cheered with the rest of the crowd as Rosa shot onto the pitch.
He couldn't be prouder of his older daughter.
Perhaps if there hadn't have been a war or Voldemort hanging over him, Harry would have tried to play professionally.
It had only been a few years prior that Rosa had managed to beat him in a seeker's duel for the first time, and though Harry had not practiced much since his children had left home, he hadn't made any excuses.
It had become another point of pride for him.
Although he wasn't widely known for it, he knew he was an excellent player, but Rosa had finally surpassed him.
She had been elated but also apologetic.
'Never apologise for being better than someone.'
That was what he had said to Rosa as he had hugged her.
Harry smiled as he watched her flying around the pitch, the very same way he had taught her from when she had been little more than a toddler.
Where had the years gone?
"YOU DIRTY BASTARD!" James shouted as one of the opposing beaters aimed a bludger at Rosa, missing her by only an inch or so.
"James!" Minerva chided, raising an eyebrow as Bella followed suit, offering a rude gesture at the man as he flew past them.
Harry simply chuckled at the duo though he stiffened as he felt a familiar chill begin to seep into his bones.
Without hesitation, he drew his wand and the crowd began to silence, they too becoming aware of it.
"What's happening?" Minerva asked worriedly.
"Dementors," Harry murmured. "Expecto Patronum."
Minerva and his three daughters followed his lead, and his grim, a cat, a pair of wolves, and a large elephant began zooming around the stadium, seeking out any threat.
Much to Harry's surprise, a vixen shot from Bella's wand and joined them.
He nodded approvingly.
Harry had been teaching the girl as he had his own children how to produce a patronus, and she had evidently been practicing.
The cold suddenly grew more prominent as swathes of dementors swarmed the stadium, looking to feast on the heightened atmosphere.
Knowing that his patronus would keep them at bay, Harry was pleased to see others join the fray from the crowd, but his eyes were sweeping across the stadium.
The dementors would only be the beginning, after all.
"You are all to stay with your mother, no matter what happens," Harry said firmly. "You too James, Bella."
None argued with him, and it was only a few seconds later that the screams started from around the stadium.
Whipping his wand around his head in a circular motion, Harry lassoed one a few rows ahead of him and the man screamed as the burning chain seized him around the neck.
With a slight tug, his head was removed from his shoulders.
In the meantime, several people had cast the Dark Mark into the sky, and chaos had erupted as the crowd began to panic.
Harry, however, remained calm.
He was no stranger to this and had been preparing for it for decades.
Spotting his next target who was attempting to curse another family, Harry turned to his own.
"Remember what I said."
With that, he vanished and appeared behind another Death Eater.
The man unleashed a screech of agony that reverberated around the stadium as Harry removed his left arm with cleaving curse.
Whomever was beneath the black robes collapsed to the ground, nursing what remained of the limb and Harry watched as the dismembered part of the arm rolled away in morbid fascination.
Catching a glimpse of a familiar tattoo, Harry summoned it towards him before jabbing the tip of the want into the cooling flesh.
He could feel the waning magic of the mark, but before it could vanish entirely, he hissed, hoping that his efforts would not be in vain.
Almost immediately, more screams rang out around the ground, and Harry doubled down on his efforts as he disappeared once more.
Only a second later, he was in the centre of the Quidditch pitch that both teams had evacuated, and he pointed his wand above to the half dozen or so Dark Marks hanging prominently.
He would not allow this to become a victory for Tom.
As he had seen the man do himself so many years prior when he'd faced off with Dumbledore in the Ministry of Magic, Harry took a deep breath and hissed into his hand.
Breathing outwards, an enormous basilisk made of searing flames burst forth, and under Harry's direction, immolated the marks that rained down around him.
By now, the Death Eaters had vanished, but they had done their damage.
Several people were being tended to, but Harry's eyes were fixed on one spot in the stadium.
He couldn't see his foe, but Harry knew Tom was there, lurking in the shadows.
Dissipating his serpent with a wave of his wand, Harry placed the tip to his throat, pleased that the collective efforts of him, his family, and the others able to conjure a patronus had sent the dementors fleeing.
Lord Voldemort glared balefully from the top box belonging to the Rosiers at the man who had foiled his plan. How Evans had manipulated his mark, he knew not, but it was something he would need to address.
"COME OUT, TOM," the man goaded. "OR ARE YOU TOO COWARDLY?"
The Dark Lord growled, his hand twitching towards his wand.
Evans knew he was here, knew exactly where he was.
His sense of magic was keen, Voldemort would concede that.
Although the two could not see eye to eye, there was no mistaking that Evans' own gaze was transfixed on him.
Voldemort's nostrils flared irritably.
His plan was to disrupt the game, kill some members of the crowd, and leave the stadium burning as he and his followers retreated.
The pictures in the following edition of The Daily Prophet would have been glorious, and he would have proven to his Death Eaters that they had made the right choice.
Voldemort's stare shifted to the large contingency of aurors pouring into the stadium and he smirked to himself.
"TOM, LET'S NOT WAIT ANY LONGER," Evans called.
A red-hot fury burned within the Dark Lord at the mention of the name his weak mother had bestowed upon him, and nothing would have given him greater pleasure than to accommodate the request.
Killing Evans in front of such a large crowd would have not only been poetic but would have shown wizarding Britain just who the stronger, better man was.
As he was weighing up the pros and cons of doing so, Evans had not been idle, and Voldemort's eyes widened as a pink bolt was fired towards him.
Throwing himself to the ground, his ears began to ring as the box he had been seeking refuge in was blown apart, the walls and windows showering his downed form in glass, wood, and mortar.
It was humiliating to find himself in such a position.
It reminded the Dark Lord of the night he had overheard the conversation between Evans and McGonagall and the man had tried to kill him.
He had been but a boy then, but that was no longer the case.
Pushing himself to his feet, he readied himself, only to duck as another spell whizzed past his head, the heat blistering the skin on his cheek.
"TOM YOU BASTARD, STOP HIDING!"
The Dark Lord covered his head as bolts of lightning crackled around him.
He shook his head in anger.
Now was not the time to fight Evans.
The man's day would come, but now was not it.
Having made his decision, Lord Voldemort reached for his portkey and was met by the furious visage of Harry Evans who had arrived in a column of fire, his wand aloft and an enormous, black serpent poised and ready to strike from within his skin.
If the Dark Lord was not so certain of his own ability, he may have felt fear, but it was only frustration that tore through him as he activated his portkey and was whisked away from Wales, the cursing of the man he'd left behind ringing in his ears.
Rosa had grown up hearing the rumours of her father's feats in magic, the ruthlessness he could show to his enemies and those that attempted to harm people he cared for, but she had never seen that side to him.
Harry Evans truly was the epitome of a gentle man, always calm, always kind, and always courteous to all.
What she had witnessed in the past few minutes, however, was a stranger in her father's skin, a monster, but not the kind that was to be feared.
As he had during the war against Grindelwald, he had not hesitated to spring into action, to defend those that could not defend themselves, and though she was taken aback, she had never been prouder to be his daughter.
Rosa had never resented her upbringing but having Harry and Minerva Evans for parents meant that there had always been expectations of her.
She had proven herself to be a brilliant witch, but she had chosen to play Quidditch instead of pursuing anything academic to escape the comparisons.
Rosa loved the sport more than anything, but she couldn't deny that to a degree she had used it to escape the wide shadow her parents cast around them.
Now, however, she understood.
She understood what it was her mother had endured whilst her father had been away fighting, understood the horror the man must have witnessed, all in the name of doing what was right, and as he reappeared in the stands where her family had stood and defended those around them, she ran to him, almost feeling like a little girl again.
"Dad!" she choked in relief, not realising that she had been crying until she was safely in her arms.
Nowhere had ever felt safer than here.
"It's alright," her father soothed gently, and Rosa shuddered as his protective magic washed over her.
"Did you get him?" her mother asked.
Her father shook her head.
"He ran," he explained. "Are you all okay?"
They were quite shaken by what had happened, but none had been harmed and Rosa wrapped an arm around James and Bella as her father pulled them close to him.
Both were trembling, terrified by what had unfolded around them.
"Are you okay, Harry?" her mother pressed gently.
Rosa looked up at her father as he nodded, his eyes ablaze in an anger that was so unfamiliar to the woman.
This was the man Charlus Potter, Arcturus, and all the others that had been to war with him spoke of; The Serpent, the vanquisher of Grindelwald, and after what had happened here, there was nowhere else Rosa would rather be.
"I know this isn't the right time, but can I come home with you?" Rosa asked quietly.
"Of course," her father answered. "Do you need a few days?"
Rosa shook her head.
"I want to come home, dad," she replied simply. "Julian…"
She felt her father stiffen.
He had never approved of her husband but had respected her choice when she had decided to marry him.
"If he has hurt you…"
Rosa shook her head.
"I am your daughter, dad," she said firmly. "He couldn't hurt me if he tried. It's just not what it used to be. He's not the man I married."
Her father simply nodded, and her mother looked at her worriedly.
"Would you like me to get your things?"
"Will you kill him?"
"More than likely," her father sighed. "I'll send Jack."
Rosa huffed, though a smile tugged at her lips.
Jack was just as protective over her as her father, and if Julian tried to make a fuss as to what was happening, it would not end well for who she planned on soon being her ex-husband.