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A History of Magic

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We do not covet anything from any nation except their respect.
–Sir Winston Churchill

Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
Near Hogsmeade, Scotland, UK

The traditional September 1st Sorting Ceremony for 1996 was memorable for many reasons. For one, it marked the first since the second and final defeat of Voldemort – which many in the magical world, especially in Great Britain, were understandably still celebrating. 

It also marked the first since Hogwarts had become more overt in its opposition to the British Ministry of Magic still being biased towards purebloods, with Cornelius Fudge and Delores Umbridge heavily shaken but managing to remain in power due to supporters and having economic pressure to enemies – many of whom had taken up refuge in nearby Hogsmeade, making it more of a bastion for those opposed to the pureblood bigot agenda.

The final first year had been sorted, but Minerva McGonagall – who was now reading the list of new students not as Deputy Headmistress, Head of Gryffindor House and Transfiguration Professor, but as full-fledged Headmistress – had not yet come forward to pick up the Sorting Hat and the stool it sat on. The reason for this became apparent as she announced, 

"Our third years and above will no doubt remember our hosting witches and wizards from Beauxbatons and Durmstrang two years ago, and this time, we have the fortune of welcoming another from across the Atlantic Ocean. We have a transfer student from Ilvermony in the USA who will be joining our sixth years, and he is our last to be sorted tonight."

A palpable buzz ran through the Great Hall as McGonagall raised the list to read the final name:

"Alex Schuyler."

Alex breathed a sigh of relief that he was being referred to by the name he had chosen for the time being as opposed to "Alexander" and the other name he also carried. Unbeknownst to anyone at Hogwarts, he had heard much about his ancestor and namesake for as long as he could remember, and he had not yet taken the name for two reasons.

One, he wanted to avoid drawing attention to himself, and two, he felt – no, knew – that he had not yet proved himself worthy of the name, even if he had heavily and successfully drawn inspiration from his heritage already.

He stepped into the Great Hall, and they could see that he looked his sixteen years, walked with a determined stride, and had black hair that was tied back in a short ponytail. They also could see that he had fair skin but with a hint of tan that spoke to him being Hispanic. 

He also wore black robes that he had worn at Ilvermony but were suitable for Hogwarts, and he had brought them for that reason. One side was already adorned with the Thunderbird crest – his Ilvermony House – with the other one still black and ready to receive the crest of his Hogwarts House. He could feel all eyes in the Great Hall on him as he approached the stool and donned the Sorting Hat.

"My, what is this?" The Hat asked, chuckling. "I see another soul lingers within you, though I am looking within you and see that you are very much aware of that. Already, you have a lot of the power that made him famous and a lot of his traits too. You have a mind that has few equals, if any, and you're ready to go to great lengths to get noticed and then protect your reputation, just like him."

Hearing the Hat's first words to him, Alex felt even more uncomfortable than when he had been sorted upon arrival at Ilvermony – the Gordian Knot and wand ceremony seemed like child's play compared to this in his eyes. A chill ran through him and he nodded solemnly, remarking, "He is said to have said, 'Ambition is my folly'." 

Almost unbidden, his hand moved to cover a pocket of his robes, where there was a small lump – a move that Harry Potter, Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley picked up on as they watched from the Gryffindor table.

The Hat continued, "I can see you are aware of that. I also happen to know your ancestor was known as 'The Little Lion'. Do not ask me how I know this – the fact that I know is enough." 

Alex swallowed and managed a nod, wondering how much more the hat knew about him and his illustrious ancestor and namesake.

As if in response, the Hat added, "Within you, I also see the courage to confront challenges and eventually prove yourself worthy of your lineage...and the name 'Hamilton'." 

The name was spoken as though it itself was an incantation. To Alex, it was – at the mention of it, he felt energy that was both chilling and invigorating racing through his veins.

"Do not be afraid," The Hat finished encouragingly. "I believe you will be tested soon enough, but that courage could only have come from you and you alone." 

"I think you're right about that...and thank you." Alex replied, smiling for the first time since he'd put the Hat on.

"You're welcome. Right, then..."

The Hat raised its voice and shouted for all to hear, "GRYFFINDOR!"

As befitted their House's nickname, a lion-like roar went up from the table, including from what Alex had suddenly noticed were the most illustrious members of the House not only among those who were there but arguably since the late, great Albus Dumbledore. He saw Harry, Hermione and Ron standing up to applaud, with many around them following their example, and he beamed at that as he noticed the red and gold Gryffindor crest appearing on his robes while the lining and hood of his robes matched those colors.

He couldn't suppress his smile growing larger as he shook hands with the so-called Golden Trio – who by all accounts that he'd heard of back in America, were revolutionaries his namesake and ancestor would be proud of. Little did he know as they invited him to sit not next to them (those seats were taken by Ginny Weasley, Dean Thomas, Parvati Patil and Neville Longbottom), but nearby and across from them, how right he would be proved in a short space of time.


The Room of Requirement (7th Floor) – Dumbledore's Army Meeting

"When I passed him on the train, I would have thought he'd be a Ravenclaw because he's got both the brains and a big appetite for learning," Harry said. "He was trying to make sure he didn't miss a beat coming to Hogwarts from Ilvermony."

"Not to mention that he and I are among the last to leave the library or the common room," Hermione added.

Nine of them had come to practice dueling and hexes that evening. Accompanying Harry and Hermione had been Ron, Ginny, Luna, Dean, the Patils and Justin Finch-Fletchley – all who had distinguished themselves in the final battle against Voldemort. Alex had enthusiastically joined their ranks, but was busy with homework along with a number of others and had sent word ahead that he wouldn't be able to make that particular meeting.

Padma took this opportunity to add her own observation, saying, "He's also got a lot of ambition, but it feels more like a thirst to prove he's something because he's Muggleborn – or from a Non-Maj family, as they say in America – and Puerto Rican."

Parvati nodded fervently alongside her – she and Parvati knew too well what it meant to have that much more to prove as immigrants and ethnic minorities. She then added, "That's where his Gryffindor colors show – he's not scared to take on others, including teachers. I'm already having some difficulty counting the number of times he's made sure to raise his voice, whether it be in discussions or arguments." The others nodded as she finished.

"We certainly are getting quite the background on magical communities abroad between the Triwizard Tournament and now this," Dean remarked.

Luna nodded and then added, "I find him fascinating not just because he's American – I look at him and it's strange...I feel like I'm watching an old soul who's done a lot in a past life but yet had unfinished business."

"I'm not an expert on Soul Magic, but I'd wager such a thing is rarer than a Crumple-Horned Snorkack, eh, Luna?" Ginny asked her best friend with a smile.

"Absolutely." Luna replied, smiling back.

"If anyone wants to have a crack at that theory for whatever reason," Parvati said, "I saw some of his owl post and aside from the Ilvermony correspondence were letters addressed from a Gilbert du Motier, a Nemeus Mulligan and an Ian Laurentius."

"Gilbert du Motier...wait, why do I feel like I've heard that name before in history?" Hermione asked, her hand going to her forehead.

"I wonder the same. You have been on holiday in France multiple times, have you not, Hermione? I remember hearing about this du Motier too but can't remember more about him..." Justin said.

"Yes," Hermione replied. "Harry got to come along this past summer, and I think we heard that name then."

"We did, but I don't remember any more about who he was," Harry concurred.

"Is this a Muggle thing?" Ron asked.

"It is – or, at least, I think it is," Hermione replied. "I do remember we heard the name while we were in Muggle Paris."

"Shall I write Fleur about this just in case she knows anything?" Harry asked, turning to her.

"Don't worry, I'll do that later today. I know you have prefect duties tonight." Hermione replied, giving him a short peck.

"Good idea, since I've got to figure out how we can further assist Hogsmeade and those who have been staying there temporarily. I have a few ideas for McGonagall and I want to run them past her."

In the wake of Voldemort's death and Hogwarts opposing the Ministry, Dumbledore's Army was no longer required to be kept secret, but its members had continued to train in preparation for further threats – and one had already arrived as they took on the role of helping those in the school and in the village who were unable to help themselves. The first Hogsmeade weekend was not far off, which gave them even more incentive to make sure everyone was in good shape.

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Chapter Text

Life is one grand, sweet song, so start the music.
–Ronald Reagan

The Three Broomsticks Inn and Pub
Hogsmeade, Scotland, UK

When the first Hogsmeade weekend came around, Alex was glad to have joined Dumbledore's Army and assisted in their efforts to make sure Hogsmeade and the refugees who were there were in good shape, because even though he saw that many of those who had taken refuge there bore the marks of some sustained struggle, the town certainly looked very healthy and people were by and large ready to welcome the students.

Once he was seated at the Three Broomsticks, though, he saw a little more of what lay beneath. Their lips loosened by drinks, the patrons were quicker to outline their grievances against the British Ministry, including some in louder voices than they would use outside. Some of the stories he heard made his stomach turn, but they always inflamed his blood more than that.

Once he saw Madam Rosmerta come around, he reached into his pocket to pull out some money, but to his great surprise, she waved him off.

"Compliments of Harry, Hermione and Ron." She said, smiling and setting a tankard in front of him. "They let me know you told them you hadn't had butterbeer since arriving in Britain."

"Wow, thanks! I'll make sure I thank them – that's incredibly kind of them." Alex replied, smiling back.

He took a long sip, and while he thoroughly enjoyed his first taste of British butterbeer, he elected to have it cool just a touch. To pass his time, he then took pulled something from his pocket and pensively placed it in front of him, shielding it with his hands so that nobody else could see it yet. It was what he had been keeping inside his robes when he had been sorted.

It looked a bit like a small music box, but if anyone had lifted the lid, there would be nothing to be found inside. It was made out of dark but warm-looking wood with some gold accents and had a small sliver knob crank, but what set it apart was the set of keyholes in the side. As he continued to watch and listen to the others talk, four of them lit up softly but visibly.

He found his pulse quickening again as he thought back to what the Sorting Hat had told him when it had showed knowledge of his heritage and identity. Its words echoed in his head:

"Within you, I also see the courage to confront challenges and eventually prove yourself worthy of your lineage...and the name 'Hamilton'. Do not be afraid. I believe you will be tested soon enough, but that courage could only have come from you and you alone."

He smiled at that, but thought to himself, I know there are parallels, but is this the time?

As he wondered this, he saw Harry and Hermione enter together, holding hands, with Ron just behind, to applause from the patrons. This made Harry and Hermione blush but smile, while Ron just glowed.

They sat one table over from him, with Harry and Hermione having their backs to him, while Ron sat opposite them. In what seemed like no time at all, they too had butterbeers for each of them delivered to their table.

Alex managed to keep listening to the murmurs and grumbling, particularly against Fudge and Umbridge. He heard one older lady say, "Merlin's beard, we can't go on living like this...I'm just about ready to go there and give them a piece of my mind, reprisal be damned!"

He looked back at the box at this and murmured, so low that only he could hear it, "Let it begin. I'm ready."

With that, he pulled out his wand, lined it up with one of the glowing keyholes, and gave it a turn. There was a click as he did so, and once he heard that, he turned the crank and looked up, taking one more long sip of his butterbeer to calm his nerves.

"I want to do something...but I don't want to go against my family, either!" Someone was saying, unable to stifle a soft wail. Alex recognized her after what Harry had told him as Marietta Edgecombe. She still had a minor imprint of the word "SNEAK" on her from Hermione's Protean Charm to protect the DA.

"Surely it can't be bad as fighting him, especially now that he's gone!" Cho Chang replied next to her.

Alex took a deep breath, smiled, and then got up and asked Marietta,

"If you stand for nothing, Burr, what'll you fall for?"


Harry could see that while many were not in disagreement with Alex, they were surprised to hear him ask that. While Marietta looked at Alex and wondering why he had called her that, almost immediately, there were people who were asking him, some skeptically,

"Ooh, who are you?"

"Who are you?"

"Who are you?"

"Ooh, who is this kid? What's he gon' do?"

Alex had clearly been expecting something like this, but Harry was staggered by how much he appeared to have been ready for that. Music intensified, and he began to, of all things, start rapping,

[Alex] I am not throwing away my shot
I am not throwing away my shot
Ay yo, I'm just like my country – I'm young, scrappy and hungry
And I'm not throwing away my shot

He drew a breath and then continued. Somehow, Harry was reminded of Mrs. Weasley, even Aunt Petunia, but even more so of Hermione and himself when he heard Alex keep going, because he talked as if he had kept it inside of him for so long that once he started, no force, magical or not, was going to stop him before he was finished.

I'mma get a scholarship to King's College
I probably shouldn't brag, but dag, I amaze and astonish
The problem is I got a lot of brains but no polish
I gotta holler just to be heard – with every word, I drop knowledge
I'm a diamond in the rough, a shining piece of coal
Tryin' to reach my goal, my power of speech unimpeachable
Only sixteen, but my mind is older
These great Hogsmeade streets get colder – I shoulder
Every burden – every disadvantage I have learned to manage
I don't have a wand to brandish – I walk these streets famished
The plan is to fan this spark into a flame
But damn, it's getting dark, so let me spell out my name

More than a few mouths were open at this show of force and wit, and a few even joined in as Alex reeled off the next quartet, which began to further inflame the onlookers:

I am the (A-L-E-X-A-N-D)
(E-R) – This is meant to be
A colony that runs independently
Meanwhile, Umbitch keeps shittin' on us endlessly

"Hear, hear!" A male voice shouted. Looking in its direction, Harry saw that it was Dean who had called that out. He also noticed that Dean was nodding his head in time with the music. Meanwhile, Alex continued, clearly encouraged by this,

Essentially, they tax us relentlessly
Then King Fudge turns around, runs a spending spree
They ain't never gonna set less than purebloods free
So there will be a revolution in this century

"Oh, yes, there will be!" A girl yelled in response, alongside more and louder excited murmurs in agreement. Harry looked over and saw that this time, Parvati had been the one to speak up.

Enter me! (He says in parentheses)
Don't be shocked when your history book mentions me
I will lay down my life if it sets us free
Eventually, you'll see my ascendancy

And I am not throwing away my shot
I am not throwing away my shot
Ay yo, I'm just like my country – I'm young, scrappy and hungry
And I'm not throwing away my shot

Harry then noticed the box that Alex had pulled out of his pocket still resting on the table where he had been sitting. Light was still suffusing from between the lid and the box itself, and as he saw three keyholes still lit up, he moved towards it.

"Harry, what are you doing?" Hermione asked, clearly wondering if Harry was about to take a gamble.

At the very worst, she was half right. Allowing himself to be guided by instinct not much unlike when he destroyed Tom Riddle's diary as a second year with a basilisk fang, Harry pulled out his wand, lined it up with one of the lit keyholes, and turned it. There was a small click, and he leapt up with his wand still in his hand and an idea forming.

"Expecto Patronum!" He shouted, and the stag in the likeness of his father's Animagus burst forth. The pub patrons and staff gasped, and in a rare instance, Harry was thankful to be the Boy Who Lived (And Won) so that he could get their attention. Alex was looking at him apprehensively, but Harry smiled as the stag came back to his side and then told him, exaggerating his normal British accent a bit to make his quartet work,

[Harry] I dream of no pureblood monarchy
Britain is already almost at "ah-narchy"
"Ah-narchy" – how d'you say it, Alex? Oh...
[Harry/Alex] "Anarchy!"
[Harry] I will fight – I've made Voldemort panicky with my (Shot!)

As Harry finished, he sent the stag galloping out of the open door of the Three Broomsticks. It wasn't just for dramatic effect, as he had sent it with a message as to what was going on to other DA lieutenants, though he stopped short of telling any teachers. He also couldn't resist rolling his eyes at people still flinching at the name even though Voldemort was dead.

He then noticed that Ron had jumped up as well and was standing alongside him, a glint in his eyes. He had obviously followed Harry's example and triggered one of the two other keyholes, and he continued,

[Ron] Us blood traitors are called menaces
But Weasleys keep knuckleheads in loco parentis 
We'd join a rebellion for justice and a chance
To socially advance instead of sewing some pants
We're gonna take a (Shot!)

Harry saw not only his, Alex's and Ron's eyes but the rest of the pub also move to Hermione, who had also jumped up with her face alight. She had clearly triggered the last lit keyhole and let fly,

[Hermione] Even Muggleborns, we'll never be truly free
'Till magical creatures have the same rights as you and me
You and I, do or die
Wait 'till I sally in on a stallion with house elves in my battalion!
Have another (Shot!)

That's my Hermione! Harry thought proudly, beaming at her and seeing her smiling back. Just leave it to her to work creature rights – especially elf rights – into this, but God love her for it!

Harry could see that Alex hadn't counted on having all three of them willingly join in like they had – and every soul in the Three Broomsticks was clearly on the edge of their seats seeing the explosive meeting of minds involving the Golden Trio – including a famous couple – and the firebrand American transfer. Alex was so visibly emboldened, it was as if his magic was radiating from him as he dared to finish,

[Alex] Yo, check what we got
Miss Hermione here hard rock like Lancelot
Ron, your pants look hot! Harry, I like you a lot!
Let's hatch a plot blacker than the kettle calling the pot
What are the odds the gods would put us all in one spot?
Poppin' a squat on conventional wisdom, like it or not
A bunch of revolutionary manumission abolitionists?
Give me a position – show me where the ammunition is!

At Alex's final words, it was as if everyone in the room had been zapped. No one had dared speak that openly and brazenly of open rebellion. Everyone fell silent, and there was also a rushing sound as the music fell silent, broken only by the sound of rhythmically snapping fingers.

Harry kept his eyes on Alex, who had appeared to come to his senses, catching himself and pleading to him, Hermione and Ron,

Oh, am I talking too loud?
Sometimes I get overexcited, shoot off at the mouth
I hadn't had a group of friends here yet – I promise that I'll make y'all proud!

A feral grin had spread over Harry's face. He looked at Hermione and Ron to see they were wearing almost identical expressions, and Harry, in the spirit of his Marauder lineage, knew their looks read, I solemnly swear that I am up to no good. Knowing the time for further action had come, he exclaimed,

"Let's get this guy in front of a crowd!"


The Hogsmeade High Street

Hermione had seldom seen exciting scenes like what transpired afterwards, including just before and after Voldemort's death. Harry's Patronus – and subsequent casts of it – had alerted the Dumbledore's Army lieutenants, including the ones who had been discussing Alex with them, that the game was afoot. People including other students and even some shopkeepers had quickly arrived on the streets, coming from the Hog's Head, from Honeydukes and Zonko's, from Scrivenshaft's and Gladrags Wizardwear, and other shops and areas.

She saw Parvati and Padma bringing Lavender out of Dervish and Banges and leading them back towards them. As they got there, the crowd was large and still growing, shaped in a rough semicircle as best as the High Street would allow and gathering around Hermione, Harry, Ron and Alex, who were perched atop one of the stone dividers, with Ginny, Dean, Luna and Justin flanking them. The gathering was also singing the cry that Alex had introduced:

I am not throwing away my shot
I am not throwing away my shot
Ay yo, I'm just like my country – I'm young, scrappy and hungry
And I'm not throwing away my shot

I am not throwing away my shot
I am not throwing away my shot
Ay yo, I'm just like my country – I'm young, scrappy and hungry
And I'm not throwing away my shot

"Everybody sing!" Harry suddenly shouted, and he began to intone and ad-lib,

[Harry] Whoa, whoa, whoa-oh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh, yeah (Let's go!)
[Crowd] Whoa, whoa, whoa-oh
[Harry] (Shout it to the rooftops!)
[Crowd] Oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh, yeah

Hermione grinned at him and then quickly said, "Wait, let me try this!" She then sang as the gathering's eyes turned to her,

[Hermione] Rise up 
When you're living on your knees, you rise up
Tell your brother that he's gotta rise up
Tell your sister that she's gotta rise up

She then raised her hands in an uplifting bit like she was motioning to a church choir, and the crowd burst forth,

[Crowd] When is this colony gonna rise up?
When is this colony gonna rise up?
When is this colony gonna rise up?
When is this colony gonna rise up, rise up?

Hermione felt even more of a thrill hearing the crowd respond that way and saw a broad smile on Harry's face and an awed smile on Ron's. She then turned to see Alex's expression, but he had gone.

Instead of staying up in front of the growing crowd as she had expected, he had jumped down and was off by himself between the Three Broomsticks and the Hog's Head. He appeared to be talking to himself, saying,

[Alex] I imagine death so much, it feels more like a memory
When's it gonna get me? In my sleep, seven feet ahead of me?
If I see it coming, do I run or do I let it be?
Is it like a beat without a melody?
See, I never thought I'd live past twenty
Where I come from, some get half as many
Ask anybody why we livin' fast and we laugh, reach for a flask
We have to make this moment last – that's plenty

Scratch that! This is not a moment, it's a movement
Where all the hungriest brothers with something to prove went
Foes oppose us, we take an honest stand
We roll like Moses, claiming our Promised Land
And if we've won our independence
Let it guarantee freedom for our descendants
Or has the blood we shed begun an endless
Cycle of vengeance and death with no defendants?

Hermione knew too well what Alex meant, as she too wondered if they had taken down the worst Dark Lord in recorded history only to face another daunting challenge if they really wanted their triumph to matter. Meanwhile, Alex continued,

I know the action in the street is exciting
But Jesus, between all the bleeding and fighting, I've been reading and writing
We need to handle our financial situation
Is this a nation of states? What's the state of this nation?

Hermione found herself frowning and wondering why he would say that, but also filed it away mentally as something to point to who Alex might actually be.

I'm past patiently waiting! I'm passionately smashing every expectation!
Every act is an act of creation!

He then turned back towards her, and Hermione made sure he saw her smiling at him and holding out her hand. He took it, and as Harry smiled as well at the two of them and pulled them up, Alex finally finished,

I'm laughing in the face of casualties and sorrow
For the first time, I'm thinking past tomorrow

The crowd then took up the rallying cry once again,

And I am not throwing away my shot
I am not throwing away my shot
Ay yo, I'm just like my country – I'm young, scrappy and hungry
And I'm not throwing away my shot


Honeydukes

"Why would she want to Floo home instead of just going to the library?" Ron asked.

He and Harry were among an excited group still talking about what had just happened, and they had opted to replenish their supply of chocolate and other sweets after those events. Hermione, being the daughter of dentists, hadn't had to buy much there and had taken the opportunity to briefly use a Floo Network line to her family's home that was safe from hostile forces at the Ministry.

Harry looked around and saw Alex on the other side of the shop, still deciding which flavors of fudge he wanted to try. He then told Ron, "I think I know, Ron. Remember when you asked if it was a Muggle thing when we were talking about Alex at the DA meeting?"

"Yeah. Oh, you think Hermione believes Alex is a famous reincarnated Muggle or something?" Ron asked.

"I think that's what she believes, yeah," Harry replied. "So the likelihood of the library – or any other magical library, for that matter – having any information on this person is pretty low at best."

He had no idea how right he was. At that very moment, at her family's house, Hermione was in a state of excited turmoil.

Chapter Text

 

We are not makers of history. We are made by history.
–Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Granger Residence, Crawley,  West  Sussex, England, UK

"Hermione! You look like you've had one of your epiphanies or discoveries – what happened?" Hermione's mother Helen asked as Hermione excitedly darted around, picking up a batch of books she had been reading over the summer.

"I have, Mum," Hermione said, almost breathlessly. "Remember that American transfer student I was talking about, Alex Schuyler? The one who we were wondering might be related to someone?"

"We remember. Do you have a lead on who he might be related to – or who he might be?" Hermione's father Julian inquired.

Hermione replied, still breathless, "Oh, yes."

"Is he a famous American?" Helen asked.

"Yes," Hermione replied.

"A famous American wizard?" Julian asked, clearly trying to narrow things down.

"No," Hermione said, shaking her head.

"Oh, a famous non-magical American, then?" Julian asked, grasping more of the answer.

"Even more shocking than that," Hermione replied. "I think he's someone who was instrumental in America's revolution against Britain. I think he's a descendant – maybe even a reincarnation – of Alexander Hamilton, the one you suggested I read about earlier this summer before we went on holiday!"

The Grangers' faces were awed but not skeptical. Helen remarked, "You sound like you came to this conclusion after something amazing happened today. What was it?"

Hermione nodded and gave them a summary of what had happened inside the Three Broomsticks and then outside on High Street, and as she saw the awed looks on her parents' faces, she added, "What got me thinking about it was him appearing to address Marietta as if she was Aaron Burr and him making a reference to King's College..."

"Which he did attend – though it doesn't even exist by that name anymore. It's Columbia now." Julian pointed out. They knew about it since a relative of the Grangers had gone to school there. "They renamed it after the Revolution."

"Of course," Hermione said, visibly trying to keep her swirling thoughts organized reasonably. She then added, in shock and almost anger at herself for almost missing it, "And...God, it's starting to make almost a frightening amount of sense. There's also his supposed last name  Schuyler! That was his wife's maiden name!"

"Don't blame yourself, pumpkin," Julian said. "Remember that it's not unusual to see how puzzle pieces fit together even if you have no idea how they do in the first place."

"Thanks, Dad," Hermione said gratefully, smiling at him.

"Anytime, dear. Are you going to tell Harry about this tonight?" Helen asked.

"Of course. Don't worry, I know there's no place for the bossy professor act tonight – this isn't something I'd expect the average Briton to know, never mind the average British witch or wizard," Hermione said with a self-deprecating but sincere smile. Seeing that, her parents beamed reassuringly to show they had faith in her.


Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
Near Hogsmeade, Scotland, UK
Gryffindor Common Room, Gryffindor Tower

"Hermione! I get the feeling you know who Alex is – am I right?" Harry asked, quietly but excitedly as Hermione found him by himself near the fire.

"I really think I do, Harry," Hermione replied, with a lot of the excitement that had been coursing through her at her house as she took out the books she had picked up. "I know it's been a long time since you studied Muggle history, but do you remember anything about Alexander Hamilton?"

"No, I don't..." Harry confessed. "Is that bad?"

"Don't worry, I'm just trying to figure out where you were," Hermione said reassuringly. "Like I was telling my parents, so much of this involves things I wouldn't expect the average Briton to know, never mind the average British witch or wizard."

"Thanks, Hermione," Harry responded thankfully. "So is this going to involve a bit of an impromptu American history lesson?"

Hermione nodded, her smile growing. Seeing that, Harry asked, "Right, then. What does the brightest witch of our generation think should people know first and foremost about Alexander Hamilton?"

"Thanks, Harry. Well, to be honest, it's a fairly long list," Hermione replied. "By that, I mean a list as long as Dumbledore or Flamel might have."

"That is awful long, then," Harry said, "But do tell more!"

"Gladly, love," Hermione replied, smiling at that and seeing Harry's face light up when she said 'love'.

She opened one of the books and turned it so they could read together and then went to certain portions that she had picked out, and then said, "Alexander Hamilton was a soldier, scholar and politician who figured in both the American Revolution and the nascent United States. Among his accomplishments were fighting at Trenton – that's the battle after George Washington crossing the Delaware – and at Yorktown, which was the battle that effectively ended the War of Independence." (Author's Note – The War of Independence is one of the British names for the Revolutionary War.)

"Impressive already...but you said there was more, Hermione. Do explain," Harry said, nodding.

"Certainly," Hermione said. "He also figured prominently in the creation and defense of the United States Constitution and he was also the first American Secretary of the Treasury, which is their equivalent of Chancellor of the Exchequer. Take a look at this..."

She passed him a photograph that she had of the US $10 bill, and Harry saw Hamilton's face in the middle. Despite having little exposure to American history, Harry knew that being printed on  a bill or treasury note took some doing, especially for a country like the United States.

He then asked, "Hermione, I've also been thinking of some of the things he referenced...who was Burr?"

"Aaron Burr was the American Vice President at one point and a contemporary and rival of Hamilton's. He was also the man who killed Hamilton in a duel," Hermione informed. "He was later tried for murder and even treason but acquitted. I won't spend a lot of time on him, but quite a bit of him struck me as not out of place in Slytherin."

"Well, I'll be..." Harry breathed. "What about King's College?"

"That's the school in New York where Hamilton went to university," Hermione replied. "It was renamed Columbia University after the Revolution, and that's its present-day name. That part we happen to know because we have a relative who studied there. It's part of America's Ivy League, which puts it on par with Oxford and Cambridge."

"I see. Thanks for explaining. One more thing I was wondering about, Hermione..." Harry inquired, before voicing his question, "Why is Alex...er...at least asking to be called Schuyler?"

"It's another name that would be dear to him," Hermione informed him. Her eyes then softened further at the human element of the story as she finished, "Eliza Schuyler was Hamilton's wife."

"I see..." Harry breathed, digesting that and imagining the gravity that Alex must have felt when he had asked to be known by that name.

He then had another question which had been brought on by some of the sordid tales that he had heard of in A History of Magic and in some of Professor Binns' classes about famous magicians. "Hermione, was Hamilton a faithful husband?"

"Actually, no, he wasn't," Hermione informed. "But Eliza chose to not talk about it because she didn't want to jeopardize his career. As a matter of fact, once he died, she spent most of her remaining days defending his legacy."

"My God," Harry said, stunned. He kept his eyes on Hermione and then added, "I'd say I could only imagine having a girlfriend or wife who was that loyal...but I know how it is thanks to you, Hermione. Hamilton must have been a lucky man."

Hermione at once felt a lump in her throat and her eyes shining. She threw her arms around him, and as he hugged her back, they lost themselves in their own little world for a few minutes, with the book they had been looking over still opened to Hamilton's contribution to the American financial system.

"I'll send owls to the others who we were discussing Alex with a short time ago, but let's stay like this for a little while, Harry," Hermione said contentedly, her eyes closed. "It can wait a few minutes."

"Now there's a sentence I don't hear all the time from you, Hermione..." Harry said with a laugh. "But I agree. Just a few minutes."


History of Magic Classroom

"An American revolutionary and Founding Father, eh?" Dean asked, looking up from one of the books. "I never could have seen that coming!"

Parvati, Padma and Justin nodded fervently at that and continued to pore over the other books. Ginny, Luna and Ron were unable to come because they were busy assisting newer Hogsmeade arrivals, but Justin, Parvati, Padma and Dean had been able to, and they had laid out their materials on Professor Binns' desk.

"Did either of you two know anything about Hamilton before today?" Hermione asked Dean and Justin, the two other Muggleborns who were there.

"I never talked about it, but I was actually visiting Virginia during summer holidays," Dean replied. "We visited a lot of historical areas, including Appomattox, Williamsburg, Mount Vernon and Norfolk. When we visited Yorktown, we heard what he had done during that battle."

He saw Hermione and Justin look at him with even more interest when he mentioned Yorktown and explained, "When he was put in charge of the assault on Redoubt #10, he actually suggested that the soldiers he had with him take the bullets out of their muskets in order to prevent a gunshot ruining their surprise attack – and it worked. He also made sure to treat the British prisoners they took with respect even though many of the men under his command wanted revenge."

"That wasn't in what I read, so I'm glad you brought that up, Dean," Hermione said, before turning to their Hufflepuff colleague. "Justin, you look like you've heard about him before – what had you heard?"

"My dad was telling me a little bit about him too," Justin said, nodding. "Even despite that, when he led the Federalists – one of the two original American political parties – he supported stronger relations with Britain. He reasoned that France was in turmoil after their own revolution, whereas Jefferson and the Democratic-Republicans stuck with the French."

"Although he helped Lafayette and his family with escaping France's Reign of Terror," Dean pointed out, making Hermione nod. "But I get what you're saying, Justin...even though it still is funny that the namesake or reincarnation of an American Founding Father who fought the way he did against Britain should find his way to Hogwarts at a time like this, it's not exactly completely far fetched when you consider that."

"It really is good that we've got a bunch of Muggleborns or half-bloods with some exposure to non-magical history," Harry said earnestly, "Because I'd have no clue how to investigate this myself."

"That's not true, Harry...but we are happy to make it easier," Hermione responded, patting him on the shoulder.

"That brings up the question, though...how do we bring this up with, say, Ron, Ginny and Luna and get them up to speed?" Dean asked.

They knew what he meant – they had to worry about how to inform their friends and classmates who had grown up in the magical world almost exclusively and were likely to have little to no knowledge of non-magical history. Hermione, though, was ready, saying, "That'll be a little difficult, but not impossible so long as we don't try to overload them with information. Let's all keep in mind – what we're finding out about Alex and his namesake aren't things that we can expect the average Briton, much less the average magical Briton, to know."

"We'll be all right. She had practice with me earlier tonight," Harry said with a grin. "I might have grown up with Muggles, but I had next to no exposure to this."

"We should have known!" Padma said with a growing smile. "And don't worry, Hermione – this has to be the most interesting bit of history we've learned in this classroom since Binns caved and told us about the Chamber of Secrets in our second year."

"No kidding! It definitely helps that we had what happened earlier to really pique our interest," Parvati said, poring over one of the books. "On that note, I really do need to read history more often."

"Oh, what did you find, Pav?" Padma asked.

"It's a bit more about Burr, Pad, but it ties back to Hamilton," Parvati said, before looking around at them and addressing them as a group. "When Burr was old, he married a wealthy New York widow named Eliza Jumel who was almost two decades younger than him, but four months later, she filed for divorce because she found out that he was losing her money considerably in land speculation. Guess who she got as her divorce lawyer?"

"I know it'll sound very unlike me, but I hadn't read that far yet, so I have no idea, Parvati," Hermione said with a smile. "Who was it?"

"Hamilton's son Alexander Jr.," Parvati revealed, with a grin that she and Lavender typically wore when discussing big gossip scoops. It was at that point that everyone else knew why she had remarked that she needed to read history more often.

"You're joking!" Hermione and Harry exclaimed together. Dean's, Justin's and Padma's eyes were also wide at the mention of this.

"No, I'm not," Parvati replied, her smile now broadening. She then added, "And it gets even better...the divorce was finalized the day Burr died."

"Bloody hell!" Harry shouted, unable to stop himself.

"Language, Harry..." Hermione chided slightly, though she was smiling. "Though that is incredible! Would you also be using that to convince Lavender to read history more often? It doesn't have to be a textbook, either. It can just be one of these."

"I'm ready to make my case," Parvati said sincerely. "You definitely don't find stuff like that in Witch Weekly or from Rita Skeeter before you caught and flipped her."

Chapter Text

 

I've got a woman's ability to stick to a job and get on with it when everyone else walks off and leaves it.
–Baroness Margaret Thatcher

Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
Near Hogsmeade, Scotland, UK
Gryffindor Common Room, Gryffindor Tower

"Alex?" Hermione asked one night not long after the History of Magic classroom meeting.

"Yes, Hermione?" Alex asked, sensing something since Harry, Parvati and Dean were also there."

"We just wanted you to know..." Hermione answered kindly, "We understand you may be under pressure to live up to a big legacy and we're here for you if you need it." The others nodded alongside her as she finished.

Alex's eyes widened, but he smiled sincerely. "Hermione, how much do you, Harry, Dean and Parvati know?"

"We think we know a bit...but I get the feeling it's only a small part of the story," Hermione replied truthfully. She then told Alex about what their theory regarding him and Hamilton, what they had done to find out about Hamilton so far and who they had been discussing it with.

"You've done a great job so far," Alex revealed with a grin. He then continued, "I did take the name Alex Schuyler because it was Eliza's last name and because I don't feel like I've earned the right to be called Alexander Hamilton just yet. And yes, I can trace my lineage to him and I've happily drawn inspiration from him. Some back at Ilvermony even say I am a reincarnation of him...but I don't know if I'm him yet."

Harry nodded the most out of any of the other four, remembering how much he had been compared to his parents, before saying out loud, "We understand. We'll help you figure things out, no matter what."

"We will," Hermione agreed quickly, followed quickly by Parvati and Dean.

"Thank you," Alex told them gratefully.

Harry then asked, "If you don't mind discussing it, Alex, what did the Sorting Hat tell you?"

"It told me that it believed I had the courage to prove myself worthy of the Hamilton name, hence why I was placed in Gryffindor," Alex revealed. "It knew I was a descendant of his and also told me it felt like there would be a test, but that it felt I was ready."

"You certainly have looked ready thus far, Alex," Hermione said encouragingly, making Alex smile. She then asked, "What do you know about the box?"

"Not as much as I'd like, Hermione if I'm telling the truth," Alex replied honestly, bringing it out. "I do know it's a family heirloom and I do think it's tied to Hamilton's memories, but while it needs to be in the possession of a descendant of his to be active, I'm not the only one who can activate it. You've seen that for yourself already."

Harry and Hermione nodded at that. Before they could say or think anything else, though, an owl fluttered in quickly through an open window and made for Parvati. Recognizing her own owl and seeing the message was from Padma, she quickly untied and opened it to find the following message, which she quickly showed to the other four,

Pav,

Massive influx of refugees in Hogsmeade. Situation in Diagon Alley has just turned disastrous. McGonagall knows, but I don't want for her to tell the rest of the DA because these people need that much help. Make sure Harry gets this message. I suggest the High Street outside the Three Broomsticks as the rendezvous point. Hope to see you very soon and safe!

Love,
Pad

"Jesus..." Harry breathed, his voice carrying both fear and fury. Seeing the others looking at him, he took his cue and flew into action, saying,

"Let's get the word out to the other members. We need to be ready to administer aid as best as we can while we keep things safe, so all hands on deck. Be combat-ready as well – I wouldn't put it past some bastard to try and rub salt into the wounds or worse. We'll take Padma's suggestion and rendezvous outside the Three Broomsticks."

The others nodded smartly. Alex and Dean ran off to get sets of acromantula silk Hogwarts robes that they had hidden reinforcements and enchantments, while Parvati quickly wrote the corresponding reply to Padma before doing the same. Hermione then asked, "What about Ron, Ginny and Luna?"

"I'll work on letting them know myself," Harry replied. "That's assuming Mr. Weasley doesn't get to them before I do."


The Hogsmeade High Street
Dumbledore's Army Command Post

Dumbledore's Army had assembled to a grim scene. The chaos on Diagon Alley had started when some residents and shoppers felt overly provoked by some Ministry employees and officials – a claim that was reinforced when memories had been examined using Pensieves. Scuffles had broken out, and when they escalated, Ministry employees and officials had used force. Instead of  and near-riots had ensued, and as a result, a number of the newcomers were nursing injuries. Many had fled using Floo and emergency Portkeys, and the understanding was that Diagon Alley was largely a ghost town.

The Dumbledore's Army command post had been hastily constructed, especially seeing as they hadn't done such a thing even during the struggle against Voldemort. It had started outside the Three Broomsticks with a large tabletop perched on top of a pair of casks of butterbeer and the banners of Gryffindor, Ravenclaw and Hufflepuff next to it (seeing as there were no Slytherin DA members). However, it had quickly also included some of the excess supplies brought by DA members and their families for the new arrivals. It had also included shipments that the friendly Hogwarts Board of Governors had sent, and while the sight was heartening, there always seemed to be even more people in need.

Fred and George were in front of the table, with Harry behind it flanked by Hermione and Ron. Alex was also there, and Harry and Ron had gladly introduced him to the Weasley twins, who had then told more about the events. Ron had also promised to tell Harry, Hermione and Alex what had happened at the Burrow once things had quieted down a bit more.

"The bastards were like a pack of mad dogs," Fred said. "Way too many people on their side. who delighted in making others suffer. I'd say we were lucky no one on our side was killed because I saw a few Dark curses."

"Thankfully, just about every shopkeeper – not just us – managed to make it here already," George said. "With the exception of Gringotts – and the Ministry would have a very hard time trying to get them to leave."

"We were able to keep our shop intact thanks the added wards and protections you suggested – as a matter of fact, a lot of people were able to get out through our fireplace," Fred added.

"I heard that you helped a lot of people out," Harry said. "You should be proud of yourselves."

"The least we could do, Harry. Permission to set up shop and resume business, sir?" Fred asked.

Alex, Ron and Hermione all smiled at the twins, but Harry's smile was the biggest. He said, "As if you ever had to ask! If you're intending on having me as a general or something, though, I do have an order. No, scratch that, a request."

"Whatever it is, say it," George said eagerly.

"We're at your service and always have been," Fred finished as they bowed theatrically.

"I want the two of you to return fire as best as you can using anything you are able to recover from the shop or think of. Do your worst. Need I say more?" Harry asked, the Marauder glint now in his eye.

"Consider it done!" Fred said enthusiastically as he and George wrung Harry's hands. Ron especially grinned at that.

"Wait a moment, boys. Can I ask for a couple of favors on top of that?" Hermione asked, holding up her hand.

"Say the word, milady," George replied.

"Thanks," Hermione said, blushing, before she explained, "If you two are up for it, see if you can go back to Diagon Alley and recover supplies not just from your shop but from the Leaky Cauldron and elsewhere that were left behind. The thought of the Ministry gits confiscating or ransacking what they find makes me sick."

"Great idea," Harry said. "That'll also give us some more to work with – not to mention it'll do a world of good for the shopkeepers to be able to keep working and know their goods are safe."

Alex and Ron nodded at that. Fred then asked, "We're all for that. What about the other request?"

"Where's Professor McGonagall? We need to see her to touch base with her about things and figure out how we're going to hit back. I know this is going to result in more open conflict, but we can't possibly sit around doing nothing else," Hermione said.

"Actually, I heard from some others that coming this way," Alex said.

"We heard the same," George agreed. At that moment, Alex drew out the box, which now had seven of the keyholes along the side lit up.

Harry, Hermione and Ron all smiled at that, and George asked, "Oh, is that–"

"–The box we've been hearing so much about?" Fred finished.

"Yes, it is. Do you two want in?" Alex asked.

"Yes, but how do we work it as well as you, Harry, Hermione or even ickle Ronnie?" George asked in reply.

"Feel it," Alex replied with a smile. "Whatever's in it will react to you. I like to think it gives inspiration in that regard."

This time, Hermione was the first to line her wand up with one of the keyholes and turn it to produce a click. Alex, Harry, Ron, Fred and George followed in that order.

"Wait, there's one more. Who do you think that could be?" Alex asked.

"I have an idea," Hermione said. "I'm going to guess it's Professor McGonagall – let me try this."

She lined up her wand with the last keyhole and turned it. As she did so, a light that flickered between blue and gold bathed the end of her wand not unlike a less intense Wand-Lighting Charm.

Alex then turned the crank, and they saw light coming from under the lid as he slipped it back into the robe pocket where it had been.

Nearby, the Frog Choir, which had been nearby singing various songs as a diversion and treat, began to sing as Harry, Hermione and Ron came out from behind the desk and even more into the open,

Eye of newt and toe of frog
Wool of bat and tongue of dog
Adder's fork and blind-worm's sting
Lizard's leg and howlet's wing

Double, double, toil and trouble
Fire burn and cauldron bubble
Double, double, toil and trouble
Something wicked this way comes!

The four Gryffindors then started, and even more people who remembered what had happened in the Three Broomsticks trained their eyes on them.

[Alex] As a kid in the Caribbean, I wished for a war
I knew that I was poor – I knew it was the only way (To rise up)
[Harry] If they told my story
was  either  going to  die on the battlefield in glory (Or rise up)
[Ron] I will fight for this land
But there's only one person who can give us a command (So we can rise up)
[Hermione] Understand? It's the only way
(To rise up, rise up)

"There she is!" Hermione exclaimed, pointing. It was short of a shout, but it was loud enough for others to notice.

Fred and George were unable to stop a grin, and as the attention switched to them, they intoned, with the choir's help,

[Frog Choir] Here comes the Headmistress!
[Fred] Ladies and gentlemen!
[Frog Choir] Here comes the Headmistress!
[George] The moment you've been waiting for!
[Frog Choir] Here comes the Headmistress!
[Fred] The pride of Caithness!
[Frog Choir] Here comes the Headmistress!
[Fred/George] Minerva McGonagall!

Harry, Ron and Alex grinned at the twins in spite of the situation as McGonagall appeared. Meanwhile, Hermione flicked her wand in McGonagall's direction, and the excess magic shot out like a hex and landed on her. There were no visible effects until McGonagall began,

[McGonagall] We are outgunned!
[Frog Choir] (What?)
[McGonagall] Outmanned!
[Frog Choir] (What?)
[McGonagall] Outnumbered, outplanned!
[Frog Choir] (Buck, buck, buck, buck, buck!)
[McGonagall] We have to make an all-out stand
And I am going to need a right-hand man
[Frog Choir] (Buck, buck, buck, buck, buck!)

Double, double, toil and trouble
Fire burn and cauldron bubble
Double, double, toil and trouble
Something wicked this way comes!

They watched McGonagall go down an alleyway and turn a corner, clearly in need of a moment alone. They hurried after her, but instead of going around the corner, they utilized some Extendable Ears that Fred and George had brought and heard,

[McGonagall] Can I be real a second? For just a millisecond?
Let down my guard and tell the people how I feel a second?
Now, I'm the model teacher, but I'm not a general
The hallowed Head of Gryffindor House with charges lining up to put me on a pedestal
Writing letters to relatives
Embellishing my elegance and eloquence
But the elephant is in the room
The truth is in your face when you hear Diagon Alley go "Boom!"

"I haven't heard her talk like that before..." Hermione said, distressed.

"Not since Voldemort, anyway," Harry said gravely.

"You know Professor McGonagall much better than I would since she was Head of Gryffindor up until just before I came here. What can you tell me about her?" Alex asked.

As they went back in front of the Three Broomsticks, Hermione took charge of this because McGonagall had also been her favorite teacher and arguably her first friend at Hogwarts before she befriended Harry and Ron after the troll incident during their first Halloween at the school.

As she did so, Harry and Ron checked with some of the other Dumbledore's Army members who had come back to the front of the inn and pub to report in personally, including Luna and Ginny. They found that as they feared, McGonagall was a willing ally, but she had to deal with her primary responsibility – making sure Hogwarts remained safe, which meant she only had so much time to give, even if she were to use a Time-Turner like Hermione and Harry once had.

When McGonagall came back in front of the Three Broomsticks, Hermione offered her a gillywater that she had procured from Madam Rosmerta and Tom for her, knowing it was one of her favorite drinks. McGonagall accepted it gratefully but made sure she had a shot of firewhisky that she already had before turning to the gillywater.

"You know, Miss Granger," She remarked, "Even with this going on, I'm quite surprised that you haven't been approached with more offers once you graduate, even if you have over a year and a half left to go. I did hear about Flourish And Blotts and Scrivenshaft's saying they would take you on."

"To be their secretary? I don't think so!" Hermione said with a harsh laugh.

"Now, why are you upset?" McGonagall asked, though she clearly knew at least part of the reason why.

"I'm not..." Hermione lied, uncomfortable at her minor outburst.

"It's all right you want to fight back, Miss Granger," McGonagall replied. "You remind me a lot of me when I was your age...a true Gryffindor, ready to fight for what she believes in, and if need be, die like a martyr..."

Hermione nodded, her mouth slightly open. She was remembering how the Sorting Hat had nearly placed her in Ravenclaw before deciding on Gryffindor.

"Let me tell you something not all Gryffindors learn soon enough..." McGonagall said seriously after a sip of firewhisky. "Dying is easy, Miss Granger. Living is harder."

Harry nodded slowly and solemnly, and Alex did similarly. Hermione, however, asked in an almost pained voice, "Why are you telling me this?"

McGonagall continued to meet her gaze as she replied,

[McGonagall] Let me be honest...
We're down to merely half of what our Governors have promised
We are a powder keg about to explode
I need someone like you to lighten the load! So?

She had also made sure to meet Harry's, Ron's and Alex's eyes as she finished. Hermione, however, looked behind her, saw determined expressions mirroring her own, and nodded meaningfully as they answered,

[Harry] I am not throwing away my shot
[Ron] I am not throwing away my shot
[Alex] Ay yo, I'm just like my country – I'm young, scrappy and hungry
[Hermione] I am not throwing away my shot

McGonagall looked at Hermione with a mixture of shock and indignation as if Hermione had uncharacteristically given the wrong answer in Transfiguration. Hermione, however, was unmoved yet perceptive.

[McGonagall] Miss Granger, we are 
[McGonagall/Frog Choir] (Outgunned, outmanned!)
[Hermione] You need all the help you can get
And you have friends – Harry, Ron, young Alexander Schuyler! Now, what else?
[Frog Choir] (Outnumbered, outplanned!)
[Hermione] We need some spies on the inside
Some toad's men who might let some things slide – Luna!

"Yes?" Luna asked eagerly, coming alongside them. Hermione replied, turning to her,

[Frog Choir Boys] (Boom!)
[Frog Choir Girls] (Whoa, whoa, whoa-oh, oh-oh-oh)
[Hermione] Send out the  Quibbler  – tell them we need supplies
We'll rally the guys and master the element of surprise

"Yes, marm!" Luna responded with even more energy, going off to take down information for one or more articles.

Hermione, Harry, Ron, Alex and quite a few onlookers smiled at her before Hermione turned back to McGonagall and finished,

[Frog Choir Boys] (Chicka-boom!)
[Frog Choir Girls] (Whoa, whoa, whoa-oh, oh-oh-oh)
[Hermione] We'll rise above our station, organize our information
'Till we rise to the occasion of both of our nations – Marm!

Taking some inspiration from how Luna had addressed her, she saluted as she finished. She smiled as she saw Harry, Ron and Alex joining her in no time flat in doing so, and even McGonagall was unable to resist smiling. The scene seemed to inspire those around them, and suddenly there was a tangible echo of the first Hogsmeade weekend when Alex had made his outburst.

[Frog Choir] Here comes the Headmistress!
[Hermione] Rise up!
[Ron/Fred/George] What?
[Frog Choir] Here comes the Headmistress!
[Harry] Rise up!
[Ron/Fred/George] What?
[Frog Choir] Here comes the Headmistress!
[Alex] Rise up!
[Ron/Fred/George] What?
[Frog Choir] Here comes the Headmistress!
[Hermione] What?
[McGonagall] And her right-hand men!
[Frog Choir] Boom!

"Wow, Hermione!" Ginny, Parvati and Lavender exclaimed almost all at once. All around, many were looking at McGonagall and the DA – especially Hermione, Harry, Ron and Alex – with awe and renewed confidence.

"Thanks, girls," Hermione replied, her smile growing even bigger. "Right then, back to the matter at hand..."

She turned back to Fred and George. "Are you two ready?"

"Still ready and willing, Captain Granger," Fred said smartly.

"Excellent," Hermione said. "I know the two of you are capable, but I'd rather you not go alone. Let me see who we can spare as reinforcements..."

Meanwhile, Ron said, "I'll go with Luna and help her get the material for the articles."

Harry and Alex nodded at him as he went off with Ginny, clapping Fred and George on the back as he left.

McGonagall then turned to Alex and said, "Schuyler, I'm glad you are here, but I have some news for you. Potter, you may want to stay for this."

Both Alex and Harry held their breath as McGonagall reached within her robes.

Chapter Text

Do you think the dead we love ever truly leave us? You don't think we recall them more clearly than ever in times of great trouble?
–Albus Dumbledore

Hogsmeade, Scotland, UK
Dumbledore's Army Command Post, High Street

Alex felt himself pale as he accepted the letter from McGonagall and opened it. He then made sure Harry was able to read it alongside him and saw that the letter went,

Dear Alexander,

If you are reading this, then it likely means that I am in great trouble. It may also mean that I have passed away once again, but do not mourn for me too much and do not blame yourself. I would have risked my life for our cause and your sake even if you'd dissuaded me because I would have wanted you to do the same if our roles were reversed.

Lean on your friends – including those you have made at Hogwarts – when you need to. Remember that though the world needs a Hamilton, it is not a burden you should ever have to bear alone because there are people who believe in you that way.

I will see you as soon as I can, whether it be in flesh or in spirit, in this life or the next. Until then, be brave.

Forever your friend,
Ian Laurentius
John Laurens

The last name was magically concealed to all who were there save Alex, and his breath caught in his throat as he finished reading. He looked up and saw Harry and McGonagall looking at him sympathetically. She then said,

"It was found on Diagon Alley in the midst of the fighting there," McGonagall said, "But that's not all. I do have good news, and I believe it's about the same man. Potter, this letter from Miss Delacour addressed to you reached me immediately after I found the letter from Mr. Laurentius."

Harry's eyes widened at the mention of Fleur's name. He took the second letter from McGonagall and opened it, inviting Alex to read it alongside him.

Cher Harry,

I apologize for not being able to write back to you and Hermione sooner, but I not only do I know Gilbert from Beauxbatons (though he is more famous by a different name), but the two of us are helping drive our British Ministry foes out of Diagon Alley and recover supplies. We found Alex's friend a short way away from the letter near Madam Malkin's and he's injured and barely conscious, but he'll be okay as long as he gets some more attention. Fighting is still ongoing here, but we will talk tomorrow because these dogs are getting their just desserts.

Bisoux,
Fleur

"Thank God..." Alex said, both relieved and still tense as Harry clapped him on the back. Unseen by Harry, his eyes had lit up when he had seen the name "Gilbert" there and guessed at what might be happening.

"What was your friend doing in Diagon Alley?" Harry asked.

"He did tell me that he was visiting relatives in London and was stopping there before making his way up here," Alex managed to say.

Not long after, Hermione spotted Luna coming back towards her with Ginny and Ron close behind. She was tucking her wand back behind an ear and rolling up one of several rolls of parchment with a look of grim satisfaction.

"What did you find?" Hermione asked.

"Plenty that would make bystanders more furious at the Ministry than afraid of reprisals," Luna said knowingly. "All that's left is to compile this into some stories and then go see Daddy and get this on the press along with a method for sending assistance or supplies."

"That's great," Hermione said with a smile as Luna got started drafting stories. "Ron, Ginny, did you want to tell Alex what happened at the Burrow when you and Luna were talking with Mrs. Weasley about Alex?"

"I would still like to hear this – it'd take my mind off something I'm nervous about," Alex said, approaching. "What happened?"

"Gladly," Ron said. "Here's how it went..."


The Burrow (Weasley Residence)
Ottery St. Catchpole, Devon, England, UK

"A reincarnated American Muggle revolutionary?" Molly Weasley asked, her brow furrowed as she digested what she had heard in her kitchen from her two youngest children and her daughter's childhood friend.

While Harry, Hermione, Parvati and Dean had been talking to Alex in the Gryffindor common room, Ron, Ginny and Luna had been visiting and telling her what they had heard from Hermione and Harry about Alex and who they thought he was. They had understood Hermione and Harry when they said they hadn't told them everything they knew about him because they didn't want to swamp them with information that they were very new to.

"Yes, Mum, but that definitely doesn't mean we shouldn't do what we can to support him," Ron said firmly.

"Sorry, Ron. I wasn't trying to imply Alex was dark or anything – it's just that you probably know as well as anyone that things like these don't always happen, even when magic is involved," Molly said apologetically.

"You can say that again. But Luna and I agree with Ron – and personally, even though I don't know much Muggle history at all, much less American Muggle history," Ginny said, "I'm willing to bet my broomstick that he has his own weight to carry due to expectation and history."

"Yes..." Ron said solemnly, "And Ginny, you and I may know may how heavy that can be better than anyone just from our own history, never mind thanks to knowing Harry."

Luna and especially Ginny nodded at that with similar solemnity. Ron and Ginny might have become heroes in their own right, but there had been a time where they had to deal with not only being poor but also with the weight of their older brothers' legacies. Fred and George having good grades despite their pranking ways was part of that, but the bulk of it came from Charlie being Quidditch Captain and Bill and Percy both becoming Head Boy in their time.

When Ginny had arrived at Hogwarts, she had also had to deal with Ron being one of Harry's best friends and Ron's accomplishments during his first year...more accurately, during his first two years, as her first year had been marked with her being possessed by Voldemort during the Chamber of Secrets incident. Ron had also served as a Gryffindor male prefect for a year before ceding his badge to Harry when he had learned the truth of why Dumbledore had chosen him over Harry, while Ginny had been named a new Gryffindor female prefect earlier that summer.

"I think..." Luna said, "We all know to some extent how it feels to be compared to a relative or ancestor. The difference is that not only is that burden larger for some, but others are more comfortable carrying it–"

"Like you, Luna," Ginny said with a knowing smile.

"Thanks, Ginny," Luna replied, returning the smile. "But whereas I'm certainly comfortable enough, we don't know how comfortable Alex is with following in his ancestor's footsteps."

"What little I do know about Muggle history tells me that it can sometimes be sordid as wizarding history," Ron said. "And if I'm right, then I can guess something that Alex has tried his hardest to remember."

"What would that be, Ron?" Molly asked.

"'Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it,'" Ron replied.

"I didn't know you knew Churchill, Ron!" Ginny remarked, beaming at him along with Molly. "I had better tell Hermione that that time spent with her is continuing to pay off!"

"Honestly, Ginny, I didn't know it was him – I heard the quote but not the name," Ron confided.

"Something's happening..." Molly remarked, looking up.

The others followed her gaze to the magical clock/indicator on the wall. Arthur Weasley's hand was frantically swinging about and then slowed down and nearly stopped on Mortal Peril for an agonizing second. Molly, Ron and Ginny were horrorstruck as they momentarily relived the night almost a year ago when Voldemort's snake familiar, Nagini, had brutally attacked Arthur when he had been on guard.

A moment later, his hand moved to You're Late and stopped with a chime – but it was also joined there by those belonging to Ron, Ginny and Molly. They quickly looked around at each other, and Ron, deducing what that meant, said, "We're all needed somewhere."

Molly and Ginny nodded weakly at that. As Ron had finished, the fireplace flashed green and Arthur's head had appeared.

"What's going on, Dad?" Ron asked. "Are you all right?"

"Is it Hogsmeade, Dad?" Ginny asked breathlessly.

"Don't worry, Ron, I'm all right. There's a lot of people who aren't, though...and you are right, Ginny, because they are making their way to Hogsmeade if they haven't already," Arthur narrated grimly.

As the children looked horrorstruck, he then turned to his wife and said, "Molly, make sure you bring the potion supplies and maybe some food too."

"They can count on me, Arthur!" She replied with a determined smile, quickly summoning her tools and ingredients.

"Ron, Ginny, Luna," Arthur continued, and he made sure the children had his attention before he finished, "Harry is also making sure the others know – he is assembling the DA in Hogsmeade while inspecting the situation and helping. He says to be ready for a fight, which means bringing anything you think you might need. Rendezvous point and command post is on the High Street outside the Three Broomsticks."

"We'll be there!" Ron replied determinedly, with Ginny and Luna nodding ardently next to him.


Hogsmeade, Scotland, UK
Dumbledore's Army Command Post, High Street

"Wow..." Alex breathed. "Ron, Ginny, Luna, thanks a lot for believing in me."

"Anytime, Alex," Ginny replied. "Oh, look, there are Fred and George..."

She was right. Fred and George were approaching the command post alongside Dean, Justin, Parvati and Padma, and the six of them were levitating a stretcher between them. Atop the stretcher was a boy who looked to be about Harry's and Alex's age, and like Alex, he had black hair tied in a ponytail, fair skin with a hint of tan that spoke to being Hispanic and an Ilvermony House crest on his robes, though in this case, it was that of Wampus instead of Alex's Thunderbird.

"John!" Alex screamed before he was able to stop himself, bolting towards the man on the stretcher.

"He has a broken non-wand arm and some internal bleeding, Alex," Justin informed Alex. "But that's not the worst of it...the bloody gits used Cruciatus on him at least once. The old chap's made of some stern stuff, though...he was still fighting as best as we could when we, Fleur and her friend found him!"

Alex smiled at hearing Justin talk about John with such pride. He then looked around, saw Molly pulling out several potions and moved aside so she was beside John's head.

"Don't worry, Alex, I'll have him in better shape soon," She assured him. She then turned to her twin sons and said both urgently and gently, "Fred, George, lift his head up slightly so I can administer these."

They nodded and tilted his head upwards slightly so that he could drink each potion, including a blood-replenishing one. After a minute, he coughed, opened his eyes, looked around and said weakly, "Alex?"

Alex nodded and breathed a sigh of relief, and his smile also grew as he quickly wrung Molly's hands in thanks. He said, "You're going to be all right, John. Mrs. Weasley's got you, and things should only get better once you get to the Hospital Wing and Madam Pomfrey."

"That would be great," John replied, managing to prop himself up on his elbows. "Did you get my letter? I felt inside of my robes and didn't find it."

"Yes, I did," Alex replied, color draining from his face again, though slightly this time. "I was so scared..."

"I meant it," John said, strength coming back into his voice. "Remember, it's no longer just me, Hercules, Lafayette...and Eliza...who believe in what you can be. It's now also Harry, Hermione, Ron and the friends you've made here. Not only do I know are they good people and strong wizards and witches from what happened with Voldemort before we came here, but I know from what you've told me that they believe in you...and they don't just trust anyone like that."

Alex nodded, and as he did so, Harry, Hermione and Ron came up alongside him supportively. John managed a smile at them and laid back down.

"Wonderful work, everyone," Harry told the other six who were there gratefully and proudly.

"Thanks, Harry," Dean said. "It was our honor to help Alex's friend. When we left, Fleur and the other Frenchman who we met, along with some of their allies, were carving out a pocket from which we can extract supplies and goods."

"Pad and I'll get him up to the Hospital Wing and come back down." Parvati offered. "That'll leave Fred, George, Dean and Justin to go right back into the fray if they want. Fred and George say they can leave the bigots smarting if they manage to get to their supplies, which were still intact."

"What do you think?" Harry asked with a grin at them.

"We're right on it, sah!" Justin replied, saluting quickly.

"Excellent!" George exclaimed. "Now, little Justin, let me instruct you on the finer points of a Weasley Twin prank..."

As they split off, Alex turned back around to find Hermione thinking hard and trying to connect the proverbial dots.

"Ian Laurentius...John...John Laurens?" She asked quietly, comprehension dawning on her face. "The American abolitionist and soldier?"

Alex nodded gravely. He then said haltingly, "And one of Hamilton's close friends from the Revolution. He was the first of them to die..."

Harry and Hermione looked at him, terrified, before Alex explained, "He was shot from his saddle at Combahee River in South Carolina in 1782. Even though Yorktown had ensured American independence, Britain had not yet withdrawn from Charleston, and it led to a skirmish. Like me, John is a descendant of his who took the name to honor him."

"I'm sorry, Alex," Harry said consolingly, laying a hand on his shoulder. "I know how hard it can be to watch loved ones suffer for your sake...and worse, die. I can only imagine how bad it is, though, to have a friend come back only to lose them again, and I'm so glad that looks like it won't happen."

"Thanks, Harry..." Alex replied softly but sincerely. He looked back at Harry, and he recognized that his green eyes – the eyes of a mother he had barely known – not only held sympathy but also more sorrows than a person should have to hold.

Alex found himself reciting those specific sorrows to indicate he understood. "Cedric Diggory, Dumbledore, Sirius Black, your own parents..."

Harry nodded, sniffed and then revealed, "When I was near a dementor the first few times I encountered one three years ago, the worst memories it made me relive were those of my parents' deaths at Voldemort's hands. But Sirius's death hurt so badly too..."

A tear slipped down Harry's face as he found himself unable to continue. Hermione quickly went to his side and gently wiped it away before explaining, "Harry had been hoping to clear Sirius's name and live with him, which would have been fantastic given what happened with his Muggle relatives. Instead, all Sirius got was a posthumous pardon and the Order of Merlin, First Class."

"God, I'm so sorry..." Alex managed to say, terrified.

"Thanks, Alex," Harry said, and then he managed a smile and a darkened laugh. "As you probably know, though, it could have been so much worse...I nearly lost Hermione too."

Hermione rubbed Harry's shoulder at this and explained to Alex, "Antonin Dolohov cursed me, and probably the only reason I lived was because I'd Silenced him and prevented him from performing the curse at full power. You can imagine we all made sure we let Harry know that there was no way we would have decided otherwise even if we knew what would befall us...me most of all because I'm his girlfriend."

Harry nodded solemnly but also smiled. He then added, "It doesn't make the pain go away, but it does ease it. It has since allowed me to put things in perspective...looking back, I think I would have had the eye of history upon me because of Voldemort since he was a threat to me anyway...it just happened to be trained on me most of all because I defeated him as a baby and then eventually managed to defeat him."

He then continued, "But I honestly think being the Boy Who Lived only means so much. I'd like to be remembered as a good friend...and if I'm fortunate, a good husband and father–"

Hermione threw her arms around him at this, and not only Harry, Ron and Alex were unable to stop themselves from smiling along with her. Ron asked, "Who are you and what have you done with Harry James Potter?"

"Ronald Bilius Weasley, meeting someone who is at the very least a descendant and follower of an American revolutionary and Founding Father – maybe even a reincarnation – has that effect," Harry said, knowing it was unlike him. Alex's smile grew as Harry then finished,

"–I'd like to also be remembered as someone who did what was right instead of what was easy...and who helped those who could not help themselves. I am ready to do all I can...but I urge everyone who is here to look inside themselves, because especially at a moment like this, the eyes of history are on all of us and we all have to stand and deliver."

Many nodded, and not one person shook their head. Looking within his robes and seeing the box shimmering, Alex pulled it out and offered it to Harry, who nodded briskly. He then lined up his wand with one of the six shimmering keyholes and turned it, followed by Hermione, Alex and Ron. Ginny and Luna approached, and Harry nodded again, inviting them to line their wands up with the last two keyholes and turn them.

Alex then turned the crank, and as music started again, Harry nodded to the Frog Choir, who were still nearby. They began once again,

In the cauldron, boil and bake
Fillet of a fenny snake
Scale of dragon, tooth of wolf
Witches' mummy, maw and gulf

Double, double, toil and trouble
Fire burn and cauldron bubble
Double, double, toil and trouble
Something wicked this way comes

The music faded for a moment to just some piano notes, and it was at this point that Harry stepped forward and began to sing, looking at Alex,

[Harry] I was younger than you are now
When I was given my first command
I led my friends straight into a massacre
I witnessed their deaths firsthand

It was easy enough to forget because it had led to Voldemort's demise, but Harry had gone to the Ministry with Hermione, Ron, Ginny, Luna and Neville because Harry had believed Sirius to be Voldemort's prisoner. Harry knew he would find it hard to forget as hard as he lived – and in the moment, he closed his eyes and could still see Hermione going down from Dolohov's curse and looking as if she was dead, Ron being attacked by brains, Neville fighting Bellatrix Lestrange and Sirius going through the Veil.

[Harry] I made every mistake
And felt the shame rise in me
And even now, I lie awake
Knowing history has its eyes on me
[Hermione/Ron/Ginny/Luna] (Whoa, whoa, whoa-oh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh, yeah)
[Harry] History has its eyes on me
[Frog Choir] (Whoa, whoa, whoa-oh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh, yeah)

Harry's eyes then snapped back open, and he raised his wand skyward and yelled, "Expecto Patronum!" Almost as quickly, Hermione also joined in and cried, "Expecto Patronum!"

Watching in awe as Harry's stag and Hermione's otter flitted around near the crowd near the command post, Alex found himself thinking first of how his namesake must have felt at Yorktown. Then, almost unbidden, the face of his Eliza flashed before him and he raised his wand and yelled, "Expecto Patronum!"

A silvery lion that was small but no less fierce-looking sprung from his wand and joined the stag and otter. Many in the crowd were awed, but beyond that, they were heartened as they felt Harry's, Hermione's and Alex's spirits and wills manifest themselves and project comforting, rousing energy. This had an effect on the Frog Choir, who continued Double Trouble but then changed to something else altogether.

Double, double, toil and trouble
Fire burn and cauldron bubble
Double, double, toil and trouble
Something wicked this way comes

Wait for it (Wait for it)
I'm willing to wait for it (Wait for it, wait for it)
I am not throwing away my shot
I am not throwing away my shot

Alex had paled, but an even more awed expression had stretched across his face as he heard the choir take up the refrain he had introduced. Harry and Hermione smiled at that too before Harry turned back towards Alex.

[Harry] Let me tell you what I wish I'd known
When I was young and dreamed of glory:

Alex nodded in comprehension, his mouth slightly open.

[Alex] You have no control
[Harry/Hermione/Alex/Frog Choir] Who lives? Who dies? Who tells your story?

Hermione had moved next to Harry again, and he turned to her and kept singing,

[Harry] I know that we can win
[Hermione] Yes, we can

They then turned back to the others, making sure they met as many eyes as they could to underline their point, as they finished,

[Harry/Hermione] I know that greatness lies in you
So remember from here on in
[Harry/Hermione/Alex/Ron/Ginny/Luna] History has its eyes on you
[Crowd] (Whoa, whoa, whoa-oh, oh-oh-oh, oh-oh-oh)
[All] History has its eyes on you

As the song finished, Harry and Hermione saw Alex saluting them. They then looked around to see everyone else in sight doing the same – which was everyone within earshot of the song, from Ron, Ginny, Luna, Fred and George all the way to townspeople, some refugees and even McGonagall herself. Deeply moved, they saluted back.

It might not have been as raucous as earlier that evening after Hermione had talked to McGonagall or as the day Alex had spoken out at the Three Broomsticks, but it was no less powerful. Anyone who saw the scene knew that everyone there stood with each other and behind Harry and Hermione.

Even as Hermione, Harry and Alex relaxed and allowed their Patronuses to vanish, they still saw the same glints of fellowship and determination in the eyes of those around them as no one dropped their salutes.

Chapter Text

The honor of a nation is its life.
–Alexander Hamilton

Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
Near Hogsmeade, Scotland, UK

"Harry, Hermione..." Alex asked once they reached the entrance hall, once Neville, Hannah Abbott and Susan Bones had taken charge for the night shift.

"Yes?" Harry asked, with Hermione also turning.

Alex replied, "I'll help watch over John tonight. Keep this safe for me."

To their surprise, he pulled the box out and placed it in their hands. Harry looked down at it, then back up at Alex, and then back down.

"We will," Harry said with a smile, "But I think this belongs to you."

He had seen something red now sticking out of the box, effectively peeking out from under the lid. He opened the box and pulled it out, and all three of them gasped.

Harry had been right. Hiding somewhere inside the box had been an American flag, but instead of the modern American flag, it was the Stars and Stripes as they would have been during the Revolutionary War, with thirteen white stars in a circle instead of fifty in rows on the blue field in the upper left.

Harry and Hermione held the flag taut so that Alex could take it in in full, and then Hermione swished and flicked her wand to fold it up into a triangle-shaped package, which she handed to Alex as she said, "Hoist those colors as high as you can and let no enemy haul them down."

"MacArthur after the recapture of Corregidor in 1945...you never cease to amaze me, Hermione," Alex said with a growing smile, saluting them.

"Tell me something I don't know, Alex," Harry said, still smiling as he and Hermione returned the salute.


The Room of Requirement – Dumbledore's Army Training

The news had filtered in by the next day that the Quibbler stories and appeal for supplies had had the desired effect and then some. Not only was there food, medicine and potions enough by some distance to help those who had taken up refuge in and around Hogsmeade, but there had been increasing manpower, whether it be from those willing to fight back or those who preferred non-combat roles. Harry and the others had made sure to congratulate Luna, her father Xenophilius and Colin Creevey, who had volunteered as her photographer.

Harry, Hermione, Ron, Ginny, Luna, Dean, Justin, Parvati and Padma were back in the room to train while others helped in Hogsmeade for the current shift, and in between practice duels and target practice, they'd been discussing what Hermione had read back over in her spare time about Hamilton's early days. It also gave Ron, Ginny and Luna a chance to catch up on what else the others had found out about him.

"I thought I had Nargles and Wrackspurts enough until I saw this..." Luna said, passing one of Hermione's books on Hamilton around.

"Bloody hell, Harry, he had to deal with some of the worst that you and we had to deal with..." Ron breathed. "He had to deal with having no parents when he was twelve and had to deal with being poor at the same time, and that was just the start of it..."

"It makes what he went on to achieve even more amazing. Times like those have broken lesser men and made some turn dark," Harry said gravely. "Look at Tom Riddle."

Everyone recognized the reference to Voldemort's birth name and nodded solemnly.

"Of all the things he could have done in that situation, to basically write himself out of all that and go on to what he did..." Hermione said haltingly. "His letter describing the destruction of St. Croix after Hurricane Maria is moving enough as is, but all the more when you consider he taught himself..."

"Because he had to." Dean finished.

"Exactly." Hermione agreed, nodding. Then she noticed something and pointed.

They followed her hand and their looks turned nervous. As Alex had asked, Harry and Hermione had been keeping the box safe, and it was centered on a small circular lampstand-size table. As they watched, light started to suffuse from under the lid and ten of the keyholes had lit up.

"He's not anywhere around – why's it doing this?" Hermione asked nervously.

"Maybe..." Ginny said slowly, "It could be like a summoning ritual. At the very least, he'll know for sure that we all believe in him."

"I'm with Ginny on this," Ron said. "Maybe he's right outside and he has a way to know it's acting like this..."

"Now that I think about it..." Padma wondered, "Do you think this will be the only time it does this without him in the same room?"

"It's certainly the only time without him so far..." Harry answered.

He looked at Hermione, and the two nodded at each other. They then approached the box, lined up their wands with two of the keyholes and turned. The clicks as they did so were louder than the previous ones, as if something bigger was about to be unleashed than before, and the others noticed, looking at each other nervously. Then a determined look came over Ron's face.

"Count me in," He said. "We said we'd help him figure it out, didn't we?"

"We did," Parvati answered. "And we're not going back on that."

That was all it took. There was still trepidation, but nothing stopped the rest of them – Ron, Ginny and Parvati first – from lining up their wands with the keyholes and turning them.

A few seconds after the last of the nine of them had done so, the crank turned on its own.

Luna and Ginny gasped, while Harry called, "Everyone, get around it!"

They moved to the order smartly, forming a circle around the box. Ron still had his wand out as the light turned a bright, yet ethereal – almost ghostly – silver.

It was as if there was a Patronus inside, but no real music had yet started to play. There was only a suspenseful note that seemed to hang in the air, but Ron closed his eyes, held both hands up with his wand in his right hand and began,

[Ron] How does a bastard, orphan, son of a whore and a Scotsman
Dropped in the middle of a forgotten
Spot in the Caribbean – by Providence, impoverished, in squalor
Grow up to be a hero and a scholar?

His eyes then snapped open and he swished his wand. A piano then started up along with the sound of snapping fingers, with a violin coming in later. The light coming from the box also changed to gold. Heartened by this, the others continued,

[Justin] The 10-dollar Founding Father without a father
Got a lot farther by working a lot harder
By being a lot smarter, by being a self-starter
By fourteen, they placed him in charge of a trading charter
[Ginny] And every day while slaves were being slaughtered and carted
Away across the waves, he struggled and kept his guard up
Inside, he was longing for something to be a part of
The man was ready to beg, steal, borrow, or barter

[Dean] Then a hurricane came – devastation reigned
And he saw his future drip-dripping down the drain
Put a pencil to his temple, connected it to his brain
And he wrote his first refrain, a testament to his pain
[Harry] Then the word got around – they said, "This kid is insane, man!"
Took up a collection just to send him to the mainland
"Get your education – don't forget from whence you came
And the world's gonna know your name! What's your name, man?"

Almost if he saw him coming, Harry turned towards the door, and no sooner had he done so than there were two more ominous clicks – one from the door and one from the box as the last keyhole was triggered. The music also paused.

The door opened, and there stood Alex with McGonagall behind him. He was holding the original American flag that had come out of the box, now attached to an oak flagpole adorned with gold. Even the flag itself seemed to have a soft but radiant magical glow about it.

While McGonagall stopped outside the circle, Alex went to the center, stood next to the box and waved his wand.

There was an ominous dun-da-da-da-dun-dun-dun and the sound of a violin briefly playing before Alex sang,

[Alex] Alexander Hamilton
My name is Alexander Hamilton
And there's a million things I haven't done
But just you wait, just you wait

As it had been during Alex's Sorting, there was a chill because the name itself felt like an incantation. This time, though, it was Alex speaking it and invoking its magic, and everyone else who was in the room could swear they felt their senses tingle with energy. Harry was somehow reminded of Voldemort rising from the cauldron in the Little Hangleton graveyard, only this was as wonderful as that had been terrible.

"Welcome back!" He exclaimed, beckoning Alex over.

"Harry, Hermione, thanks for bringing him back...bringing me back," Alex replied, wringing their hands gratefully as the others beamed at him and crowded around him in support. He then asked, "So, what'd I miss?"

"Not much – only we were spending our breaks from practice learning about Hamilton's early days. I can understand even more why you want to live up to the example he set," Harry replied.

Alex's smile looked wistful but was sincere. He said, "I know there's more to be told...please continue."

"You heard the man. Places, everyone!" Hermione said, and the others nodded vigorously and formed the circle again with Alex at the center, while Alex planted the flagpole into a stand that had appeared there. The music had been continuing, and Luna and then Padma sang,

[Luna] When he was ten, his father split, full of it, debt-ridden
Two years later, see Alex and his mother bed-ridden
Half-dead, sitting in their own sick, the scent thick
And Alex got better, but his mother went quick
[Padma] Moved in with a cousin, the cousin committed suicide
Left him with nothing but ruined pride, something new inside:
A voice saying, "Alex, you gotta fend for yourself!"
He started retreating and reading every treatise on the shelf

Alex had been closing his eyes, clearly drinking it in as his past story was retold. Harry noticed that he looked like he was visualizing it in lurid detail in his mind's eye. Hermione and Parvati's finish was then the most energetic part of all so far.

[Parvati] There would have been nothing left to do for someone less astute
He would have been dead or destitute without a cent of restitution
Started working, clerking for his late mother's landlord
Trading sugarcane and rum and other things he can't afford
[Hermione] Scamming for every book he could get his hands on
Planning for the future, see him now as he stands on
The Express steaming north through a new land
At Hogwarts, he is now a new man!

Alex's eyes then snapped open, heard his newfound friends proclaiming him and looked around, now feeling fire rushing through his veins. He wondered to himself if this was fire not yet seen in 200 years and thought, Whatever it is, I'm ready to unleash it – to unleash the power of the past to change the future.

By now, it looked even more like a ritual because the ensuing segment of the song felt like a ritual chant with Harry, Hermione and the others still in a circle around Alex.

[Harry/Ron/Dean/Justin] At Hogwarts, he is now a new man
[Alex] (Just you wait)
[Harry/Ron/Dean/Justin] At Hogwarts, he is now a new man
[Alex] (Just you wait)
[Hermione/Ginny/Luna/Parvati/Padma] At Hogwarts, he is now a new man
At Hogwarts
[Harry/Ron/Dean/Justin] (Hogwarts)
[Alex] Just you wait!

[Hermione/Ginny/Luna/Parvati/Padma] Alexander Hamilton
[Harry/Ron/Dean/Justin] (Alexander Hamilton)
[Hermione/Ginny/Luna/Parvati/Padma] We have waited in the wings for you
[Harry/Ron/Dean/Justin] (Waited in the wings for you)
[Hermione/Ginny/Luna/Parvati/Padma] You could never back down
But have you learned to take your time?


In the aftermath, McGonagall updated them on the situation in Diagon Alley as they gathered near what looked to be a large blackboard that had appeared on the wall, with her standing in front.

"The Ministry bigot forces have for the most part been driven out of Diagon Alley thanks to the help you sent," She informed. "So that's a job almost well done as long as we can mop up and retake the Alley completely."

She then turned to Hermione and said, "Miss Granger, your suggestion to get informants and spies into their ranks is paying dividends. Already, we have learned from Ministry officials who are on our side that our enemy is retreating to the house of Antonio Jugson, an unmarked Death Eater, in magical York."

"Thank you, Professor," Hermione said as Ron and especially Harry clapped her on the back.

"Sounds like a chance to mop even more of them up if we want and if we can figure out a way to do it," Harry added. "Do we know if Fudge and Umbridge will be there anytime soon?"

"We have it on good authority that they'll be there tomorrow night, Potter," McGonagall replied with even more of a feral smile. "And we're not the only ones who want to go for them either. Madam Bones has informed me that she and Aurors who are on our side – more loyal to her and our cause than to the Ministry itself – have been coordinating with their opposite numbers in America and France."

"Brilliant," Harry said, joy and steel evident at once in his voice. "Any word on whether they'd let us join the operation?"

He looked around and saw the others were also raring for a chance to end it if possible.

"We're working on that. I personally am doing all I can. You should also know that the French and Americans had the call on naming the operation and they've codenamed it Rochambeau."

"Operation RochambeauYork?" Hermione asked, her mouth open. The significance and parallels were not lost on her.

"And Yorktown was named after York," Alex said, his eyes the widest of all. "Whoever came up with the code name for the operation sounds like they know their Non-Maj history."

"Which brings us to something you wanted to share, Hamilton," McGonagall finished, nodding at him.

He nodded back, and as she stepped aside, he went to the board, turned around and said,

"I have a bit of a confession...I'm not the only one who is the namesake and descendant of a hero of the Revolution. I have three good friends who can say the same – and furthermore, they are descended from and named after close friends of Hamilton's and they are already pitching in to help bring down the pureblood bigots. You met two yesterday, so I think it's about time you learned more about them. How does that sound?"

"Fantastic," Harry said. "Only one thing first. Dobby?"

"Yes, Harry Potter, sir?" The colorfully dressed house elf asked, popping into view.

"Could we have refreshments, please?" Harry asked with a smile. "I get the feeling we'll be here a while."

"Indeed, yes, sir!" Dobby exclaimed eagerly. At that, the others smiled and Alex drew a folder from an inner robe pocket.

While Dobby and some of the other Hogwarts house elves laid out sandwiches, pasties, tea and coffee for those in the room, Alex pulled something out of the folder and said, "All right, let's start with someone you saw up close yesterday and who had a very close shave."

He slapped what he was holding onto the board, and as he moved his hand away, it magically stretched to cover the entire board. When it finished, the board looked to be a magical photograph of John, but on his feet and talking animatedly to others. It looked as if it had been taken back at Ilvermony.

"John Laurens, who was going by Ian Laurentius," Alex told the others. "He's a native of South Carolina like his ancestor and namesake and was sorted into Wampus at Ilvermony. Hermione?"

He nodded at her here, and Hermione knew it was because she'd shown that she'd read about Laurens. She nodded back after she and explained, "Besides being a Patriot, Laurens was also an abolitionist despite his father and his business partner running one of the biggest slave trading houses in America."

"I heard a bit about him too and I'm really glad we were able to help John in light of that...to put it mildly," Dean said meaningfully. "I also heard that Laurens believed that blacks and whites could co-exist in a democracy. He even wanted to incorporate black troops into his forces but was unable to because some gits in South Carolina got in his way."

Hermione nodded furiously and took a rather ferocious bite out of her chicken sandwich.

"I heard Laurens also dueled Charles Lee in order to avenge Lee's insults against Washington's character and won, shooting him in the side," Justin said as he downed his tea. "Hamilton was Laurens' second– "

"–Which is unquestionably ironic given the way he died." Alex finished frankly with a solemn nod.

"Is that the same General Lee who bungled the American command at Monmouth?" Dean asked.

"The exact same," Alex replied. "The duel was about half a year after the battle and Lee had already been court-martialed and dismissed for his incompetence."

"Is that the same Monmouth where the legend of Molly Pitcher came from?" Hermione asked.

"Yes, that one," Alex replied with a grin. "I might need you to help tell the others later, though, Hermione, because we might wind up short on time."

"Remind me to tell you about it," Hermione said quietly but eagerly to Ginny, Luna and the Patils. "It involved an American woman manning a cannon and continuing to work even after British cannon or musket fire tore away part of her dress."

"Ooh..." Ginny breathed, with Luna, Padma and Parvati all having their mouths in small silent O's.

Luna then found her voice and agreed. "Yeah, do tell us, Hermione! After this."

Hermione nodded and they turned back to Alex at the board. As the photo of John had been pulled off the board, it had shrunk back to his normal size and he had placed it back into the folder before pulling out a new photo and placing it on the board. As it stretched across the board, the others saw that the photo was one of a black boy with darker skin than Dean's and his hair in short black curls.

"Hercules Mulligan, who was going by Nemeus Mulligan," Alex informed. "Like me, he's a New York native who was sorted into Thunderbird when he came to Ilvermony."

He watched for nods from the others to indicate they understood and then added, "His ancestor and namesake was an Irishman who immigrated some time before the Revolution, settled in New York and attended King's College – which is now Columbia, as you first shared, Hermione – like Hamilton did."

Hermione nodded at that. An expression that was part bemused and part sheepish then appeared on Alex's face as he took a long sip of coffee and then continued,

"Now, let me tell you something not even many Americans know...for all he did for the United States, Hamilton was originally a Loyalist and might have remained that way if it wasn't for Mulligan."

"What?" Harry, Ron, Dean and even McGonagall asked, clearly stunned.

"You're joking!" Parvati and Padma said together.

"It's true," Alex replied sheepishly. "When Hamilton came to New York, he stayed with his family, came to share Mulligan's views and subsequently became a Patriot."

"And the rest is history," Dean remarked.

"Quite literally," Alex said with a smile. "Mulligan was part of the Sons of Liberty, the secret Patriot society that included Sam Adams, John Hancock, Paul Revere of the famous midnight ride, Patrick Henry – the same man who said, 'Give me liberty or give me death' – and even Benedict Arnold before he switched sides. We've adopted the name at Ilvermony for our version of Dumbledore's Army, only we're called the Sons and Daughters of Liberty."

Ron, his eyes widening, almost gulped down the half of a meat pasty that he had been chewing on. He exclaimed, "I never thought we'd inspire people in other countries to follow our example, so that's humbling!"

"Be proud, Ron," Alex said sincerely before he added, "That goes for all of you."

He made sure to meet the eyes of every DA member in attendance, making sure to save a look of special praise for Harry, Hermione and Ron. He then continued,

"Mulligan's particular role in the Revolution was as a spy since he was a tailor who ran a high-end haberdashery that attracted British officers with the money to afford his services. When the British recaptured New York, Hamilton recommended him to George Washington as a method of keeping tabs on the British in New York for that reason."

"Interesting..." McGonagall said, stroking her chin.

"Definitely, Professor," Alex agreed. "Even more so when you consider that it's been written that Mulligan saved Washington's life twice with information he provided. I personally think it's more than that."

"Really?" Dean asked, his eyes widening as he had paused with a pasty halfway to his mouth.

"Really," Alex replied.

"Wicked..." Dean breathed.

"When you consider that, I suppose it should come as no surprise that no coincidence that the current Mulligan is already in magical York using the same approach to great effect," McGonagall said. "Already, he has provided us a good amount of useful information."

"I disagree on one count, actually, and let me tell you why..." Alex said with a hint of mischief in his grin. "I personally think what he's doing is even more audacious than what his ancestor did."

"How so?" Padma asked, pricking her ears up.

"A lot of the supplies and goods we managed to recover from Diagon Alley were from Madam Malkin's," Alex explained. "Hercules bought a bunch of those and also similar supplies from Gladrags in a deal that favored Malkin's and Gladrags. It not only helps them out in a time of need, but he's also confident he can recoup a profit even with that..."

"With a lot of Ministry officials and other bigots as his clientele, basically giving him their money? That's brilliant!" Ginny exclaimed.

"He sounds like he could do a lot to make a girl look good, but I might have to pay a pretty Galleon to get it!" Parvati commented.

"I won't lie, Parvati – he isn't cheap, but he doesn't produce cheap work," Alex said with a glint in his eye and a grin. "But I'd be happy to see if he could do something for less as a favor to me."

Parvati smiled back as Alex removed the photo of Hercules from the board and pulled another out of the folder. "Okay, now for one more...and I think you might recognize the name."

As he slapped the photo on the board and as the photo expanded, they saw a man who was also black, but with a skin tone similar to Dean's, and his black hair was tied in a small man bun and he had grown mutton chops. He also wore a light blue Beauxbatons uniform.

"Gilbert du Motier, better known as the Marquis de Lafayette," Alex informed.

"Lafayette!" Hermione exclaimed, turning to Dean, Justin and Harry. "That was it! That was how we heard about him – especially since we visited Picpus Cemetery!"

"Blimey, I'm ashamed we didn't remember it sooner. Sorry, Alex," Dean said sheepishly.

"And that's the one we saw helping Fleur in Diagon Alley, too!" Justin yelled.

"Nothing to apologize for, Dean," Alex replied kindly. "But since I know that some of you have heard of him, can anyone tell me who he was?"

Justin raised his hand and answered, "Basically, the only French general fighting alongside the Americans until Burgoyne's defeat at Saratoga, which convinced France to enter the War of Independence."

"Very good, Justin!" Alex said, clapping. "If I could, I would be giving points to Hufflepuff for that."

"Leave that to me, Hamilton," McGonagall said with a twinkle in her eye eerily reminiscent of Dumbledore. "Finch-Fletchley, take five points for Hufflepuff."

Justin flushed, and Hermione and Dean looked at their old Head of House a little quizzically. McGonagall, seeing this, then replied, "I shall have to look over my memory of this and award further points to Gryffindor and Ravenclaw for being well-read and sensitive to a foreign student and history that is dear to him."

That successfully turned those looks into smiles, and they nodded at Alex to continue. He nodded back and said, "The current Lafayette distinguished himself at Beauxbatons and was even one of those chosen as a Beauxbatons delegate for the Triwizard Tournament two years ago," Alex continued. "The only reason he wasn't here at Hogwarts was because he had already elected to be an exchange student at Ilvermony instead, and that's how John, Hercules and I met him – or met him again, if you prefer."

"Hang on, Alex," Harry said as a realization hit him. "From what I gathered from her letter, Fleur knew him and who he was descended from and named after and was in on helping keep it a secret. She addresses him as Gilbert instead of Lafayette."

"That is correct, Harry," Alex confirmed. "Lafayette was one of Fleur's few male friends at Beauxbatons before the tournament. You and he are part of the handful of wizards who can resist her Veela allure."

"Really does make sense," Parvati said, turning to the others and she finished, "You know I like looking good, but not so boys drool over me like a piece of meat."

They grinned and laughed briefly before Alex continued, "They did bond as a result – Lafayette was a bit short of friends too since the Lafayette name is actually famous in magical France as well as the Non-Maj world."

"The Marquis, Miss Delacour and their allies have been assisting the members you have dispatched with retaking Diagon Alley since yesterday," McGonagall informed them. "Laurens rejoined them as soon as Madam Pomfrey pronounced him fit."

The door opened again just as Alex was pulling the photo of Lafayette off the board and Colin appeared, showing two people in: Fleur and Lafayette. Both of their faces and their Beauxbatons uniforms had some dirt and soot on them, but they were both smiling broadly.

"'Arry!" Fleur shouted, running to him and giving him a hug. While the other Britons smiled at that, Lafayette went to Alex.

"Is it done?" Lafayette asked, his tone leaving no doubt as to what he meant.

"It is, Lafayette," Alex answered resolutely but with a smile. "Harry reminded me that history has its eyes on all of us once again no matter who we are, and he's not running from being a Potter and the Boy Who Lived at a time like this, so I'm taking up the Hamilton name. We also found one of our old flags that our ancestors must have carried into battle inside the box, and Hermione reminded me to hold those colors and let no enemy take them down."

He motioned towards the Revolutionary-era American flag.

"Bravo, Alexander," Lafayette breathed, slapping his hand and shaking it. Then he turned to the others, primarily Harry and Hermione, and said, "Thank you all...not just for what you did for Alexander, but for those who needed you."

McGonagall and the DA members in attendance nodded and smiled at that, and Hermione replied, "De rien (You're welcome)."

Lafayette's smile grew and he introduced Alex to Fleur as Alexander Hamilton before Alex introduced Lafayette to Harry, Hermione, Ron, their comrades and McGonagall.

"I heard you had to deal with some unmarked Death Eaters while you two were down there," Harry said, bringing drinks and plates of food for Lafayette and Fleur.

"Most would 'ave backed down from them, but Gilbert is not one of those people," Fleur said proudly.

"Fuckin' right, he isn't," Alex agreed in a similar tone.

"Language! McGonagall's right here!" Hermione hissed, but McGonagall was actually not disapproving and pointed back towards the table where the box still was. It was glowing and just about every keyhole was lit up.

Lafayette saw this, and even though he had merely had a sandwich and some coffee, caught Alex's eye and tilted his head in its direction with a broad grin. Alex nodded with a smile and said, "Let's do it."

Lafayette was first to line up his wand with one of the keyholes and turn it. Fleur and Alex then followed, with the others close behind. Once everyone but McGonagall and Colin had done so, Alex turned the crank, and a growing golden light became visible from under the lid as a melody similar to the previous one started, though slightly faster. Fleur and Alex took the lead to start,

[Fleur] 'Ow did a ragtag volunteer army in need of a shower
Zomehow defeat a global superpower?
[Alex] How did we emerge victorious from the quagmire
Leaving battlefields waving Betsy Ross's flag higher?
Yo, turns out we have a secret weapon
An immigrant we know and love who's unafraid to step in
[Fleur] Now he's constantly confusing, confounding pureblood 'enchmen
[Alex/Fleur] Everyone, give it up for America's favorite Fighting Frenchman!

At this, Lafayette jumped onto an empty table, and if Harry, Hermione and Co. had been thinking Alex had been going fast at the Three Broomsticks, they found Lafayette was something else.

[Hermione/Dean/Justin] Lafayette!
[Lafayette] I'm taking this horse by the reins
Making Death Eaters deader with bloodstains
[Hermione/Dean/Justin] Lafayette!
And I'm never gonna stop until I make 'em drop,
Burn 'em up and scatter the remains! I'm–
[Hermione/Dean/Justin] Lafayette!
[Lafayette] Watch me engaging them! 
Escaping them! Enraging them! I'm– 
[Hermione/Dean/Justin] Lafayette!

He then jumped down from the table as they continued,

[Lafayette] We went to France for more funds
[Hermione/Dean/Justin] Lafayette!
[Lafayette/Fleur] And came back with more guns
And ships – and so the balance shifts
[Fleur] A rendezvous with Rochambeau, consolidate our gifts
[Lafayette] We can end this war in Yorktown, leave them all at sea
But for this to succeed, there is someone else we need

"We know!" McGonagall said, her smile now wide.

[Dean/Justin] Hamilton!
[Lafayette] 'Cause he knows what to do in a trench
Ingenuitive and fluent in French, ami!
[Fleur/Luna] Ronald, too!
[Lafayette] Oh, we'll have to use him eventually
What's he gonna do on the bench, ami?
[Harry/Parvati/Padma] Hermione!
[Lafayette] No one has more resilience
Or matches our practical tactical brilliance!
[Hermione/Ron/Ginny] Harry, too!

"You wanna fight for your land fair?" Lafayette asked Harry, rounding on him.

"Harry, too!" Hermione, Ron and Ginny shouted again.

With a hard glint in his eyes and a feral smile on his face, Harry shook Lafayette's hand firmly and replied, "Get the DA right there!"

Lafayette returned the feral smile and finished,

[Lafayette] Get the DA right there
We know they gotta get the DA right there
I mean, we've gotta put some thought into the letter
But the sooner, the better
To get the DA right there!

Chapter Text

 

Truth will ultimately prevail where there is pains to bring it to light.
–George Washington

Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
Near Hogsmeade, Scotland, UK
The Room of Requirement – Dumbledore's Army Training/Meeting

As if in answer, Lafayette had barely finished when the door opened again and Susan Bones entered, her face alight. Behind her was a woman who had auburn hair similar to hers but slightly grayer and who was wearing Auror robes and a monocle attached to a chain. Next to this other woman was a young man with long red hair tied back in a ponytail and an earring with a fang dangling from it.

"Madam Bones!" McGonagall exclaimed, a smile coming to her face.

"Professor McGonagall!" The woman with the monocle replied with a small smile of her own. "I'm glad you have your DA members and their friends here, because you're just the people I wanted to see."

Recognizing that Alex had not yet met Madam Bones and was looking puzzled, Susan brought him over to her and said, "Alex, this is my aunt Amelia, head of the British Ministry's Department of Magical Law Enforcement. Auntie, this is Alexander Schuyler."

"Actually, Susan," Alex said with a grin as he shook Madam Bones' hand, "You barely missed it – it's Hamilton."

At that, both Bones women's eyes lit up, and Madam Bones said, "Is it, now? Pleased to have you here, Hamilton – I'd been hearing about your heritage from Mulligan! I'll need to make sure he gets the news because I've given him a way of reporting directly to me."

"That would be wonderful," Alex said gratefully.

"Any update on the situation, Madam Bones?" Harry asked.

"I'm very glad you asked, Potter," Madam Bones replied, turning to him. "Before I say anything else, let me make this clear – Dumbledore's Army will need to explain to me how they plan to help the operation since I'll have tactical command of Rochambeau. Mind you, I know you lot are made of stern stuff after the vanquishing of Voldemort, but I want to make sure you have a plan."

"That's more than fair enough," Harry said. "What do we know about the house and who will be there?"

"It's big and impressive, but it certainly isn't Azkaban," Madam Bones said. As she spoke, a table appeared nearby with what appeared to be a living three-dimensional map or diagram of the Jugson House and the surrounding area. As they gathered around it, they could see it had two large floors and was made out of dark stone with a large wooden front door and a slew of nearly arranged windows. Two sizable streets led towards the front of the house, and they could see gardens in the back.

"We've cracked worse nuts than this, thankfully, but it's definitely going to be tricky because they look to have a numbers advantage," Madam Bones continued. "However, not all of them will be trained fighters. Some are unmarked Death Eaters, but many are Wizengamot members or senior Ministry officials who have relied on their money, power and pureblood status to keep them out of trouble."

"And Fudge and Umbridge most of all," Ron finished.

"Quite right, Weasley, but we don't know if they'll be there beyond tonight. It's a rare chance to break every rotten egg once they're all in the same basket," Madam Bones replied. "Some of the information Hercules has gathered indicates they have a dinner planned so they can raise morale and lick their wounds after Diagon Alley."

"If that's true, then they're even more vulnerable," Hermione said. "Do we know anything about what wards they have there?"

"Not as much as we'd like, Miss Granger," Madam Bones replied, "But we've discerned that the ward stone is in one of the gardens in the back and we have been working on how to pen them up inside the house while this is going on in any case. The French offered to help do so but needed some help with reversing those wards."

She indicated the redhead next to her and said, "Mr. Weasley here was the first to volunteer, and between his talents and the fact that he has so many family members in the Order of the Phoenix and at the center of this, there was no way I was going to refuse."

"Thank you very much, Madam Bones," Bill replied gratefully, smiling at her.

Madam Bones smiled back. Alex, meanwhile, had heard the name Weasley and was looking back and forth from Bill to Ginny and Ron. He then asked, comprehension starting to dawn on him, "Hold on...Ron, Ginny, is he an older brother of yours?"

"Oh, yes," Ron said with a grin, with Ginny nodding as enthusiastically as he was. "Alex, this is Bill – Ginny's, Fred's, George's and my oldest sibling. He was Head Boy while he was here and works for Gringotts as a curse breaker."

"Oh, that makes even more sense!" Alex said. "Pleased to meet you, Bill."

"Pleased to meet you, Alex," Bill replied kindly, shaking his hand before turning to Lafayette. "And you as well, Lafayette – Fleur talks a lot about you and I can see why!"

"Merci, Guillaume," Lafayette replied with a smile. "The same can be said about you."

"So we would need something that would thin their numbers and make a frontal assault more effective and less costly, then?" Harry asked.

"Precisely," Madam Bones replied. "Any ideas? And just so you know...these scum have shown that they are willing to attack and kill innocents, so I will not decry you for choosing lethal force."

Her vengeful smile was soon mirrored on the faces of the others in the room. Hermione was the first to visibly ponder again, and she said after a few moments,

"Well, as long as we're calling this Operation Rochambeau, set to take place in York and involving multiple namesakes and descendants of heroes who fought at Yorktown...I say, 'In for a Knut, in for a Galleon!' Let's go back over Yorktown for ideas."

"I'm all for that," Madam Bones replied with a grin. "It may also be a good history lesson."

"I may be daft for asking this since I'm in the same boat, but why the name 'Rochambeau'?" Ron asked.

"You're not stupid for that, Ronald...After Marshal Jean-Baptiste Donatien de Vimeur, the Comte, or Count, of Rochambeau," Fleur replied. "He was field marshal of the French forces in America, including during the siege of Yorktown."

"It also sounds remarkably like, 'Rush on, boys!'" Alex added. "That's why it was also used as the Continentals' password for the attack on Redoubt #10."

A second table with a living map on it appeared, this time showing Virginia and the surrounding area circa 1781. Hermione began as they moved to it and forces and towns appeared,

"Lord Cornwallis had elected to go after Virginia to try and affect the American supplies and morale and had chosen Yorktown – which was simply called York back in those days, as you pointed out, Alex – as his headquarters because the Royal Navy had held control of the sea throughout the war, meaning he could be resupplied by ships coming into Chesapeake Bay."

"At this point, the French navy got involved," Lafayette continued, taking up the narrative. "Admiral de Grasse brought a French fleet from the West Indies and got the better of not one but two British admirals. Samuel Hood didn't realize that de Grasse was going towards Yorktown instead of New York while Sir Thomas Graves was unable to dislodge de Grasse and his fleet from the Chesapeake after a battle."

"Basically took away control of the Atlantic seaboard from us when it mattered the most..." Harry said, comprehension dawning on him.

"Part of that was due to a misdirection tactic that Washington employed to convince Henry Clinton that the French and the Continental Army were attempting to retake New York instead of going to Virginia," Alex pointed out.

"At that point, the Americans and French started their bombardment," Dean said, "Using siege guns, howitzers and mortars."

"I know you said you saw some of the cannonballs still lodged into houses there, Dean..." Justin continued. "What not everyone remembers is that as devastating as that initial Franco-American bombardment was, it was from an line that was a relatively reasonable distance from the British defenses. Captain Hermione?"

"Thank you, Lieutenant Justin," Hermione said, blushing but smiling as she added, "It's true – as the siege continued, the Americans and French were building a second line even closer to the British fortifications. Finishing it would enable them to fire on Cornwallis and his men from even closer range, which of course means with even more devastating effect. Redoubts 9 and 10 were the last British fortifications that prevented them from doing so."

"They decided to storm both of them at night. The French were responsible for Redoubt #9, while Lafayette was asked to pick a commander to lead Continentals in an assault on Redoubt #10," Alex continued.

"Yes. He initially chose his aide, Jean-Joseph Sourbader de Gimat...until Hamilton asked to lead the attack and Lafayette relented," Lafayette (the current) added with a grin that Alex returned.

"And then told the men under his command to fight with unloaded muskets," Padma finished.

"Quite right, Padma," Alex replied proudly. "The surprise worked –  almost the whole British garrison of Redoubt #10 was captured, and Hamilton's forces only lost 9 dead and 25 wounded in the process out of 400. Three days later, the British waved the white flag."

"I heard a bit of what we sang when we laid down our arms. Anyone who knows the story knows it was The World Turned Upside Down, but I heard a slightly different version," Luna said, speaking up.

"Really?" Alex asked, as not only his but the others' eyes turned towards him. "What was it, Luna?"

Luna intoned, with her often-used dreamy voice adding further gravity,

If buttercups buzzed after the bee
If boats were on land, churches on sea
If ponies rode men and grass rode cows
And cats should be chased into holes by the mouse
If the mamas sold their babies to the Gypsies for half a crown
If summer were spring and the other way 'round
Then all the world would be upside down

The others applauded as she finished, and Luna blushed but curtsied sincerely.

"So the French are helping with the blockade again since they're going to help Bill barricade them in using wards..." Hermione said, putting her hand to her chin and biting her lip slightly.

Harry, Dean and Justin nodded in recognition. Harry then added, "So now we need to figure out how we can besiege the house..."

Ginny whispered to Ron, "Ron, remind me to give you the new Cannons poster I got so you can put it up in your dormitory. I got one when I picked up a Harpies one for my own room."

"Wait, that's it!" Hermione said sharply, slapping her forehead and looking angry.

"Oh, sorry, Hermione! I wasn't trying to be a distraction – I just wanted to keep things light!" Ginny said frantically, clearly thinking she was in trouble. Everyone had turned to look at Hermione, eager to find out what the brightest witch of their generation had come up with.

"No, I'm glad you did, Ginny..." Hermione clarified. "I really was being daft trying to think of something else, but the answer's been staring us in the face!"

"All well and good...but out with it now, Hermione, or else we can't help put it into action!" Padma urged.


Over the next ten to fifteen minutes, Hermione outlined the plan while Harry helped fill in some of the particulars. Once they had hammered it out properly, everyone in the room – including McGonagall and Madam Bones – looked like wolves with a foolproof plan to scoop up a whole flock of troublesome sheep.

Harry was quickly writing a message and giving it to Hedwig to send. He then turned to the other girls in the room besides Hermione and Fleur and said briskly, "Parvati, Padma, get the word out to our members in Hogsmeade. Luna, Ginny, you do the same for the rest of us in the castle. Tell them that the alert is heightened and that we may be taking offensive action in 24 hours. Anyone who wants to be part of the strike team should contact Professor McGonagall so that she can vet them."

"Of course!" Parvati replied with a smile, and she and the other three saluted and almost ran out of the room to spread the message.

Harry grinned at that, but that disappeared when then saw Hermione looking anxious. He immediately went over and asked, "Are you all right, Hermione? I'm sure

Hermione neither nodded nor shook her head as she met Harry's eyes, but her voice betrayed some worry as she replied, "Thanks, Harry...it's not that...Alex showing us that he found Lafayette, Laurens and Mulligan made me wonder something...could you be with me when I ask him, love?"

They shared a look and Harry understood what she was talking about. He quickly nodded and they approached Alex, looking for a moment alone with him.

In the midst of this, Ron approached Madam Bones and asked, "I've got an idea. Is there a way I could meet Hercules? I could possibly pose as his assistant – under glamours, of course. It'd take some of the tailoring work off his hands and allow him to be more attentive to information, plus he wouldn't be alone if something were to happen."

"An admirable idea, Weasley," Madam Bones replied with a small smile. "Let me work on some of the details of that before we get you out to York. Make sure Potter and Granger know where you're going – you know they're bound to look for you if you go off without saying anything and aren't available around the castle."

Ron nodded fervently as she took him aside. Meanwhile, Hermione saw Alex by himself, approached with Harry beside her and asked,

"Alex, if you found Lafayette, Laurens and Mulligan...did you find Eliza too?"

A look that betrayed swirling emotions crossed Alex's face, but he nodded and resolutely reached back into his inner robe pocket. Harry's and Hermione's mouths fell open slightly as Alex pulled out the folder and drew another magical photograph out of it, showing him speaking to a fair kind-faced woman dressed in Ilvermony robes. She had long dark hair and a warm smile.

"Elizabeth Schuyler, my distant cousin," Alex said. "She also traces her ancestry to Phillip Schuyler, his daughter and her namesake, Phillip's other daughters Peggy and Angelica, and of course Hamilton himself."

He then took a deep breath and added, "She is indeed my girlfriend...and much like during the Revolution, I'm about to enter what looks to be the decisive battle of this conflict while she's pregnant with my child."

Hermione's and Harry's jaws both dropped. She asked him timidly, "Oh, my...Alex, you didn't...with her...did you?"

"Yeah, Alex, you don't come across as someone who'd have sex before marriage," Harry said, though he was still paler.

"Don't worry, I didn't. It was an accident related to a ritual she was practicing in an Ancient Runes class late last school year," Alex said. "She summoned the spirit of an unborn boy, and apparently, I made contact with her after class at a time where she was magically implanted with the spirit and embryo. One of our school mediwitches even confirmed her hymen was still intact while confirming that we were the parents."

Both Hermione and Harry had the color still drained from their faces and their mouths were slightly open, but they kept their eyes on him and nodded to indicate they understood and to invite Alex to continue.

"Knowing what I do about my ancestor and namesake, I've often wondered if a similar fate was in store for me and my loved ones especially if I fully embraced my heritage and took on the name," Alex continued. His voice then took on an even more emotional tone as he voiced the questions that had tormented him at times: "Would I die young like he did? Would I have to bury my firstborn child like he had to? Was I doomed to make the same mistakes?"

"It doesn't have to be that way, Alex," Hermione said firmly but bracingly. "You know that."

"I do now," Alex responded, now managing a smile again. "Hermione, Harry...when you, Dean and Parvati told me that you'd help me figure it out-"

"Don't forget Ron, Ginny, Luna, Justin and the rest of us are on board with that too," Harry pointed out.

"And by God, I'm grateful for that," Alex said, his smile growing. "I'd already promised myself that I would do all I could to make sure he grew up with a father."

"You're going to be a great dad, Alex," Harry said, clapping Alex on the back as his and Hermione's smiles also grew. "Oh, is it lighting up again?"

He had noticed a light from the robe pocket where Alex had placed the music box. Surely enough, light was visible under the lid and five of the keyholes had lit again. With visible excitement, the three of them each lined up their wand with a keyhole and turned before Lafayette and Fleur, seeing what was going on, joined them and did the same. 

Once that had happened, Hermione turned the crank, and everyone took a couple of steps back as a new song began to play and Alex put the box away. Hermione then began to sing, and what came out of her mouth made Alex and Lafayette pale.

[Hermione] We may not yet have reached our glory
But I will gladly join the fight
And when our children tell their story
They'll tell the story of tonight
They'll tell the story of tonight (Tonight)

She had closed her eyes while singing and opened them to find Alex and Lafayette looking at her as if she was a ghost while looking as pale as ghosts themselves.

"I'm sorry, Alex...should I not have?" Hermione asked, nervous that she had misused the power resting inside the box somehow.

"It's not that, Hermione...it's that that's the song John, Hercules, Lafayette and I sang when we tapped into the box for the first time."

"Oh, that's it...it's basically your song? I'm so sorry..." Hermione said, fear that she had overstepped now very evident on your face.

"Don't apologize, Hermione!" Lafayette said dismissively, as Alex nodded his agreement. "It's deemed you worthy to join in because you – along with Harry, Ron and your friends – have also shown the courage to fight for freedom and make sure you create a better world for yourselves and your children."

"Thanks, Lafayette," Hermione said gratefully, "But I think I'd feel better if Alex picked up the next bit."

Alex nodded and sang, looking at Hermione and Harry,

[Alex] Have you ever felt like nobody was there?
Have you ever felt forgotten in the middle of nowhere?
Have you ever felt like you could disappear?
Like you could fall and no one would hear?

Harry slowly but clearly nodded, and next to him, so did Hermione. He only had to think back to how he had felt in the cupboard under the stairs back at 4 Privet Drive, while she only had to think back to Halloween night of their first year when she had been crying in a girls' bathroom just before Harry and Ron saved her from the troll.

Almost without thinking, Hermione took Harry's hand, and he took his cue and continued,

[Harry] Well, let that lonely feeling wash away
[Alex] (All we see is light)
[Harry] 'Cause maybe there's a reason to believe you'll be okay
[Alex] (For forever)
[Harry] 'Cause when you don't feel strong enough to stand
You can reach, reach out your hand

"I wish John and Hercules were here for this!" Lafayette exclaimed.

"They will be by tomorrow," Alex replied, his voice laden with resolve. "Until then, let's sing for them!"

They nodded at each other, and as Fleur stepped alongside Hermione and Harry and joined in, McGonagall and Madam Bones looked on, almost misty-eyed.

"If I didn't know any better, I'd say it feels like gentle phoenix song," Madam Bones breathed.

"My friends in the highlands tell me there is a certain magic that lies in honoring legend...or rewriting it," McGonagall said. "These young men and women and their friends are doing both."

[Hermione/Harry/Fleur] (And oh)
[Alex/Lafayette] Raise a glass to freedom
Something they can never take away
[Alex]  No matter what they tell you
[Hermione/Harry/Fleur] Someone will come running to take you home
[Lafayette] Raise a glass to all of us
[Hermione/Harry/Alex/Lafayette/Fleur] Tomorrow there'll be more of us
[Alex/Lafayette] Telling the story of tonight
[Hermione/Harry/Fleur] Out of the shadows

[Fleur] Ze morning is breaking
[Alex/Lafayette] (They'll tell the story of tonight)
[Harry] And all is new
[Lafayette] (All is new)
[Hermione] All is new in-
[Alex] (It's only a matter of-)
[Hermione/Harry/Alex/Lafayette/Fleur] Time


The Hogsmeade High Street
Dumbledore's Army Command Post

The next day, there was a heightened sense of anticipation alert that something was happening even though Madam Bones, McGonagall, the Hogwarts student body and professors and their allies were doing a good job of keeping their plans under wraps. There was something akin to determination or vengefulness on the faces of the DA members who were rotating between Hogsmeade and classes (thanks to schedules drawn up by McGonagall and the rest of the faculty). Some had even been deployed again to Diagon Alley to fully retake it.

Harry was back at the DA command post and had a furrowed brow as he was looking over some of the intel that Hercules had sent before Ron had joined him in York. He then looked up to see a tall blond boy with green eyes approached the desk and remove his glamours to reveal Ron.

"Ron!" Harry exclaimed, looking up quickly. "Everything going well?"

"Yeah..." Ron said with a sheepish grin. "Maybe even too well if that's even possible, mate!"

"What's going on?" Harry asked. "Where's Hercules?"

"He's back down the street with this fit woman who came to us this morning. She offered to help out by modeling some of Hercules' clothes and robes, and we started getting even more business, including more from people who we know are in the pureblood supremacist camp and will be at the Jugson House tonight, which means we got even more information to match," Ron said.

He then continued with a laugh, "Some tried to get frisky with her, but we also found out how scary she was because she knows a few nasty hexes and wasn't afraid to use them! She's nice – we just had to learn quickly not to get on her bad side. Some of the townsfolk don't appear to have gotten the message, though-"

"And you want me there before it gets out of control?" Harry finished. When Ron nodded, Harry grinned at him and said, "Don't worry, I'm glad you asked. Neville, can you cover for us while I check this out?"

"For sure, Harry," Neville replied, taking Harry's place behind the desk. Then seeing Alex arriving, he said, "Oy, Alex, you should go with Harry and Ron. Hercules is coming back from York."

Hearing this, Alex quickly caught up with Harry and Ron, and within two minutes, the three of them saw what Ron had been talking about.

Hercules was next to a striking woman with long silvery hair, who was in a dress with a feather-trimmed collar that showed a lot of skin around the collarbones. Furthermore, through a high-cut slit, a lot of leg and a pair of high heels were visible. As Harry, Ron and Alex approached, they saw her scaring away a few men who had been too forward with their advances as her wand spouted a shower of yellow sparks.

"Did either of you ask who she was?" Harry asked.

"Of course we did! But she was very secretive and said she was simply a friend of yours who wanted to maintain secrecy while we were there," Ron replied.

As he finished, Hercules and the woman turned and saw them, and as they did, the woman smiled coyly at Harry. Seeing this, Harry took the initiative and said, "I'm glad to have you on our side, but can you tell us who you are?"

The woman nodded and turned around so that no one around could see her face. After a few moments, her hair turned bubble-gum pink. She then turned back to them and her face was now unmistakably recognizable now too.

"Tonks?!" Harry asked, flabbergasted but now bursting into laughter. Beside him, Ron was similarly gobsmacked but was also roaring in no time flat.

"Wotcher, Harry!" Tonks greeted brightly. "Sorry to alarm you lads! I just figured this was a time where I didn't want anyone but Ron and Hercules to know who I really was while it was going on so that we wouldn't blow our cover. It may have been dangerous, but I'm a little put out that that's over because it was fun!"

"A Metamorphmagus?" Alex asked, his eyes wide, though he was also laughing.

"And a British Auror and also a member of the Order of the Phoenix...but even more importantly, a friend of ours, so she really is the perfect person for a situation like that," Harry answered proudly. "Alex, Nymphadora Tonks – but make sure you call her by her preferred surname unless you want her to hex you back over the Atlantic. Tonks, Alexander Hamilton."

"Auror Tonks, if you ever got tired of being an Auror, I have a lucrative offer waiting for you," Hercules exclaimed as Tonks and Alex shook hands. "How many witches can be such a good model and also offer security like you do?"

"Oh, Hercules, you charmer. I do love my job and working for Madam Bones, but I might have to take you up on that if you keep offering discounts," Tonks replied. "A girl has to look good, after all, no matter what she looks like!"

"Let's get up to McGonagall and Madam Bones so we can tell them what's been going on," Ron urged.


Hogwarts – 7th Floor Corridor outside Room of Requirement

"Glad to see you again, Lee!" Harry said.

"All right there, Harry?" Lee asked, clapping him on the back. "This is one bloody exciting encore to the fight against Voldemort that we're in! Mind you, Angelina, Alicia and I came as quick as we could once Fred and George told us – we wouldn't have missed it for the world."

"And we're glad you did, Lee," Fred said happily. "But did you want to also tell Captain Potter your special role in the operation?"

"Oh, yeah," Lee replied. "I'll be helping with radio communications during the raid. We need to work on coming up with some code names."

Harry laughed at that. The sun was setting as the Room of Requirement was hosting briefings for Operation Rochambeau, with Dumbledore's Army and the Sons and Daughters of Liberty to be briefed last.

As such, they were outside in the dead-end corridor including the magical portrait of Barnabas the Barmy trying to teach trolls how to dance the ballet and were watching American, French and British Aurors and other adult wizards were going in and out of the Room, and when Harry recognized some of them as Order members who Alex had not yet met, he pointed them out to Alex.

"You've already met Tonks, Bill and Mr. and Mrs. Weasley," he said, indicating each as he or she approached and greeted Alex. "And these are two more British Aurors – Alastor 'Mad-Eye' Moody and Kingsley Shacklebolt. And this is Remus Lupin, our old Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher and an expert on Dark creatures."

"Harry was just starting to tell me a bit about you, Professor Lupin – or should that be Remus or Moony?" Alex asked. "Once he knew I'd heard about Sirius, he was telling me a bit of what you two got up to with his dad."

"A lot of stories to tell there, Alex," Lupin said with a wistful but sincere smile. "But enough of that – your friends want to see you."

He stepped aside, and Alex's breath caught in his throat. John, Hercules and Lafayette were all there, looking at him. The others nearby took a few steps back to give them some space.

"I could say it's been a hell of a trip, but that would be an understatement," Alex said. "But I'm glad we're all here for this and I hope I've made you proud – because you definitely have made me proud."

"You absolutely have, Alex," Hercules said, clapping him on the back. "But yeah, wild doesn't even begin to cover this. I mean, all four of our predecessors fought the British 200 years ago, and here we are as wizards helping their magical community with their own revolution! If you'd told me we'd be doing this at the end of last year, I'd have called you certifiably crazy."

"Did they tell you what we found when we finished liberating Diagon Alley, Alex?" Lafayette asked.

"No, I didn't hear anything..." Alex said.

"Nothing to apologize about – I know it's been chaotic," Lafayette said, and he explained,

"It was after we stormed the Magical Menagerie. Parvati had just dispatched an unmarked Death Eater who had taken a hostage...as it turns out, she was a half-blood who the son of a gun was trying to make his concubine or worse. We thankfully got to her before anything bad happened, but I'd never seen John so angry in this life and I knew why even as he did everything necessary to make sure he was okay." 

Alex and Hercules looked at John and knew where that fury had come from – he had helped narrowly avert someone being enslaved, and even after all this time, it still made his blood boil worse than the blood-boiling hex could make it.

A flash of that same righteous fury had crossed John's face, replaced almost instantly by uncertainty as he asked, "It made me wonder...were we called for this based on what our ancestors did? Did some heavenly force think we are spirits of freedom and liberty and arrange for us to be here at this moment?"

"It's just like you told me, John," Alex said reassuringly. "We may be called for such times like these, but we no longer have to do it by ourselves. Not when the likes of Harry, Hermione and Ron are around."

As if to underline his point, what turned out to be all of the American Aurors in the strike team, who had been speaking to Harry, saw Alex. Harry was genuinely in awe and bemused because they were even more starstruck by Alex, flocking around him and asking,

"General Hamilton?"

"Secretary Hamilton?"

Hermione and Harry were especially thrilled to see this, but Alex was predictably and clearly the most emotional at the sight of this.

"No, not a general, Secretary or President...not yet now, anyway," He said with a laugh and smile. "McGonagall has already flattered me with essentially a captain's commission in Dumbledore's Army alongside Harry, Hermione and Ron. And just Alexander or Alex will do just fine. But I'm glad you guys are here. What's your name?"

"Adrian Lincoln, sir," said the closest male, who had short curly sandy hair and was shaking his hand vigorously. "One of my great-great-great-uncles fought alongside your ancestor at Trenton."

"Katherine Fleming," said the closest woman, who had long red hair reminiscent of Ginny's and was also speaking reverently while shaking Alex's hand. "I had an ancestor who fought at Saratoga and another who served with your ancestor at Yorktown."

"Pleased to meet you both!" Alex replied, a further coupled chill and thrill of excitement running through him at hearing that. "However, I'm not the only one who deserves such company..."

He stepped aside so that the American Aurors saw John, Hercules and Lafayette and noticed that most of their eyes zipped towards Lafayette as they recognized him.

"I know one of you wants to say it," Alex said with a grin and a Dumbledore-esque twinkle in his eyes. "Who's it gonna be?"

It turned out to be Katherine, but she used a different phrase than Alex was expecting. She intoned something that had become a slogan as the United States had entered World War I on France's side: "Forget us, God, if we forget the sacred sword of Lafayette!"

Lafayette turned even redder, but his smile also grew as he shook Katherine's hand. Not far away, Ron and Luna were watching the scene unfold pensively.

"Blimey, maybe that's how I should look at it...maybe that's how I should measure a life well lived," Ron remarked softly. "If I were fortunate enough to come back and live another life, if people were glad it was me..."

"-That would be enough, Ronald?" Luna asked, turning to him as she gently took his hand.

"That it would, Luna," Ron replied, meeting her eyes and grasping her hand more firmly.


The Room of Requirement – Dumbledore's Army / Sons and Daughters of Liberty Joint Briefing

The four Dumbledore's Army captains McGonagall had chosen after they had come forward during the chaos in Diagon Alley – Harry, Hermione, Ron and Alex – were front and center. Flanking them were the DA lieutenants who had interacted with Alex the most and researched his history – Ginny, Luna, Dean, Justin, Parvati and Padma. Susan also joined them since Amelia was also up there, and so did Alex's classmates and fellow descendants – John, Hercules and Lafayette – representing the Sons and Daughters of Liberty. Lafayette had also brought Fleur, which no one objected to.

Behind this front row were the other DA lieutenants. Not only were they all veterans of the fight against Voldemort, but many of them had come to Hogwarts with Harry, Hermione and Ron, and most who weren't had played Quidditch for Gryffindor alongside Harry. Among these were Neville, Fred, George, Lee, Hannah, Colin, Colin's younger brother Dennis, Lavender Brown, Seamus Finnigan, Angelina Johnson, Katie Bell, Alicia Spinnet, Ernie MacMillan, Terry Boot and Anthony Goldstein. Behind them were the other DA members who had volunteered for the attack and whom McGonagall had vetted to fight.

It took them about ten to fifteen minutes for them to outline their plans to soften up the defenses at the Jugson House, and by the time they were finished, Madam Bones was smiling proudly at them, clearly convinced that they belonged in the operation.

"I know this school and this country will not forget your bravery. I'm glad you're on our side and glad that you'll help us finish this," she said. She then turned to McGonagall, who was also at the front, and added, "Right, that just leaves one more matter. Minerva?"

Madam Bones also nodded at her here and signaled that she had the floor again. McGonagall nodded back, stepped forward and announced, "I have been speaking to Professor Flitwick, and he has agreed to watch over the school for me tonight."

There was a commotion, and Parvati said reassuringly, "Professor, don't worry, we'll win and come back alive!"

"No, wait, she must mean...but you're not doing that, are you?" Hermione asked, stunned as she realized what might be going on.

"I am, Miss Granger. I'm joining you in the assault," McGonagall replied, a fiery version of Dumbledore's twinkle in her eyes. "I've been raring for a fight myself."

As if to underline her point, her wand leapt from an outer robe pocket to her right hand, and as soon as she took it, Gryffindor red and gold sparks burst from the tip. The assembled students cheered as one, as they sensed that even Dumbledore would have done no such thing.

"Come off it!" Ginny exclaimed, but she then added, "Oh, this is going to be something else!"

"One reason why I don't intend to miss it, Miss Weasley," McGonagall said, smiling at the roar of approval from the gathered students. Then she nodded at Hermione and Harry and said, "Potter, Miss Granger, if you please."

"Gladly, Professor," Hermione said as she and Harry now stepped forward and turned to face their comrades. "Given that we'll be part of an operation, a slight change in decoration is in order."

Video for Found Tonight, to view with ending notes:

   

Chapter Text

Is life so dear or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!
–Patrick Henry

Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
Near Hogsmeade, Scotland, UK
The Room of Requirement – Dumbledore's Army / Sons and Daughters of Liberty Briefing

Harry and Hermione drew their wands and flicked them at their fellow students and comrades, and the others gasped as they found that each of them, plus Harry and Hermione, had two additional patches on their robes or uniforms. Each Dumbledore's Army or Sons and Daughters of Liberty member now had his or her national flag on the right sleeve, which meant that quite a few Union Jacks had appeared, although the Stars and Stripes were also present for Alex, John and Hercules and the French Tricouleur had appeared for Fleur and Lafayette. Among the flags to appear had been the Indian flag for the Patils and the Irish flag for Seamus.

The Dumbledore's Army and Sons and Daughters of Liberty crests also appeared opposite their school or House crest. The Dumbledore's Army crest was one with Dumbledore's silhouette in white against a dark blue shield, with the letters "DA" in black near the bottom and the name "Hogwarts" just below it in black on the gold border. Behind the shield was a wand forming an X shape with the Sword of Gryffindor.

Meanwhile, the Sons and Daughters of Liberty crest was that of a shield inspired by the American flag with a blue upper third with white stars and the rest red and white vertical stripes. What set it apart, though, was a black snake over the stripes and the message "Don't Tread on Me" on the shield border. Also, similarly to the DA crest, a wand and a non-magical weapon formed an X shape behind the shield, but in this case, it was a musket with a bayonet instead of a sword.

As they admired their new patches, Dobby and company had brought up pumpkin juice, orange juice, tea and coffee to drink, plus bread and one stew from each of the main participating nations. Harry had suggested stew because it was bound to be a chilly night in York and they had no way of knowing how long the operation would take.

Lafayette was teaching John and Hercules about beouf Bourgignon, while Hermione was explaining Lancashire hotpot to Fleur and Alex was teaching Molly about New England clam chowder.

"This is very good! So...cream, potatoes, onions, clams..." Molly was saying, allowing a spoonful to linger on her tongue to size it up using her trained palate.

"You've got it right, Mrs. Weasley," Alex replied. "Some have put a little bit of bacon in it and sometimes even hot sauce. Just no tomatoes in the broth, because then it's Manhattan clam chowder. Believe it or not, the Maine legislature once debated a bill that would have outlawed it in the state if it had become law."

Molly was glad that she had swallowed that spoonful by the time Alex had finished, because she believed that if she hadn't, she'd have spit it up because of how much she was laughing.


Headmaster's/Headmistress's Office

While the students who were part of the assault team enjoyed their dinner, McGonagall and Madam Bones had retired to the Headmistress's office for a drink and some private conversation.

"If you'd have told me this would be happening last week, Amy, I would have suggested you empty your liquor cabinet at work," McGonagall said with a smile as they each had a small glass of Ogden's Old Firewhisky.

"I was hoping for a chance, Minnie, but I didn't expect that we would have the people involved that we do!" Madam Bones replied after finishing hers. "Potter, Granger, Hamilton, the Weasleys, Lafayette, Delacour..."

"Indeed...but Minerva, be careful," Dumbledore said from his portrait. "A desperate witch or wizard is always a dangerous one. I believe you will be successful, but we have already lost much against Voldemort and I would rather we not add to that tonight."

"I will, Albus," McGonagall replied solemnly, a wistful smile on her face as she gazed at the image of her old friend and predecessor, whom she had been Deputy to. "Though if they're desperate because children and young men and women who are our students have decided to make a stand, then I can live with that."

"I know," Dumbledore replied, his famous twinkle in his eyes as he smiled back. "Whatever happens tonight, I can imagine you have never been prouder to be their Headmistress. I know I have never been prouder that I was their Headmaster."

McGonagall looked at both his and Madam Bones' faces, both with encouraging smiles, and had unshed tears in her eyes.


Operation Rochambeau
Jugson House
York, North Yorkshire, England, UK

Less than an hour later, the attacking force had made its way into York by Apparition and Portkey and Lee was in front of the Jugson House waiting for word from the various teams. He was anxious, but he didn't have too much longer to wait.

"Lightning to River. Mars is bright tonight," Harry's voice said over the radio. It was a reference to the centaur saying that he had heard during his detention in the Forbidden Forest during his first year, chosen because it meant that battle was on the horizon.

"Flower to River," Fleur added. "Mars is bright tonight."

"Roger that, Lightning and Flower," Lee replied. Seeing Madam Bones nod at him, he added, "This meeting can do nothing more to save the country."

It was another American Revolution reference – namely, to what John Adams was said to have said at the Old North Church to signal what would become known as the Boston Tea Party. It was the signal for the ward-reversing team, including Lafayette, Fleur, Bill and the French Aurors, to start moving in. They did so and were soon within sight of the ward stone.


"Let's just Stun them and get their wands away," Lafayette said, seeing the four guards. "I normally wouldn't be that restrained, but I'd rather not have bloodstains give anything away to the enemy if we have to run for cover."

"And if what 'Arry, 'Ermoine and Alexandre have planned works, there'll be enough killing tonight," Fleur agreed.

Silently, Bill and one of the French Aurors snuck into position alongside them, and all four took aim with their wands. Lafayette signaled them, and as one, they said clearly yet quietly, "Stupefy!"

The Stunners did the trick, and the guards hit the ground like sacks of potatoes. Quickly springing from cover, some of the other French Aurors dragged the fallen targets out of view and set to tying them up and removing their wands and other items. Meanwhile, Bill sized up the ward stone with Lafayette and Fleur alongside him.

"'Ow does it look, Guillaume?" Fleur asked. There was a hint of nervousness in her voice.

"Not as bad as we feared, actually," Bill replied with a relieved smile. "Predictably anti-Apparition and anti-Portkey wards, along with some other defensive ones, but I should be able to reverse this as long as I don't do something stupid."

Fleur reflected his smile as she breathed a sigh of relief. As he set to work and Lafayette kept a watchful eye, she radioed Lee and said, "Flower to River. We're starting to get the toad out from under her rock."

"Roger, Flower," Lee replied, excitement audible in his voice. "We'll heighten the alert and start to move people towards their places."


It was a nervous ten minutes or so before the radio came to life again, and when it did, Lee realized that he had been shaking slightly from the tension.

"Flower to Lightning," Fleur's voice was heard over the radio. "Wards were successfully reversed. Rochambeau is a go."

"Copy that, Flower," Harry's voice responded, a note of excitement in his voice. "That's brilliant. River, make sure our people are not in the middle of the streets leading to the house."

"Streets are clear, Lightning," Lee said, smiling. "Is the storm ready?"

"First peal of thunder is imminent," Harry replied.

As he finished, there was an explosion down one of the streets.

"Wait a minute! What was that?" Tonks asked, startled.

Unable to suppress a small smile, McGonagall replied, "You'll find out in seconds."

Tonks and Lupin gawked at her, and the two of them turned to look around the corner. There was a whoosh, and a cannonball whizzed past them and crashed through one of the large windows of the Jugson House to the left of the door. They then heard the cannonball detonate inside and heard yelps and screams.

Everyone was still in shock and trying to fathom what was happening when there was a second loud sound of cannon fire from the other street leading to the house. There was another whoosh, and a second cannonball smashed through another large window, this time to the right of the door. They heard and saw a second explosion and the screams seemed to double.

"What in Merlin's name is going on?" Kingsley asked, bewildered.

"Those were cannons, Shack! What on earth are those kids..." Moody replied, trailing off as he walked as quickly as he could given his wooden leg to a corner and peered down the street. Then he exclaimed, "Sweet Morgana, have a look at this!"

They looked down the streets and their jaws dropped. Dumbledore's Army and the Sons and Daughters of Liberty were coming down the two streets leading towards the house bringing two cannons down each street – one siege gun and one howitzer. The cannons were moving on their own, though some were also helping them move manually. Most of the people who were helping them move them manually were Muggleborn and not yet of age – but not all.

"Oh, this is going to be fun. They won't know what hit them, and if they do, they'll wish they didn't!" Arthur was yelling cheerfully as he helped push one of the siege guns along. An official in the British Ministry's Misuse of Muggle Artifacts Office, he was a known (and proud) aficionado of all things non-magical despite being a pureblood and had once unforgettably enchanted a vintage Ford Anglia and given it the ability to fly. Ron, Ginny, Fred and George, who were all with the same gun, laughed and cheered.

Some of the students were also waving British and American flags as well as the flags of Hogwarts, Ilvermony, Dumbledore's Army, the Sons and Daughters of Liberty, Gryffindor, Hufflepuff and Ravenclaw. Fife-and-drum versions of the Hogwarts school song and Yankee Doodle could also be heard, and hearing the children and young adults sing quickly brought the wide-eyed but approving townsfolk out into the streets.

As the guns and their crews neared them, Madam Bones, Tonks, Lupin, Moody, Shacklebolt and the other assault team members at the front saw that Harry had one more thing that made him look like a proper commanding officer. He had brought Godric Gryffindor's legendary longsword with its golden and ruby-encrusted handle and was waving it over his head, urging Dumbledore's Army and the Sons and Daughters of Liberty onwards with their artillery.

McGonagall, Madam Bones and Lee were all smiling and chuckling fondly at them as they arrived, while others were still gawking as the cannons reached the square and were deployed in a line facing the Jugson House. Seeing this, Justin said, "What? Certainly you've seen a cannon before, even if you're pureblood! Keep calm and carry on and all that!"

"Don't be tough on them, Justin," Dean said. "This may be taking a page out of history, but this is no 18th-century cannonade that we have planned."

"And this is where we prove it, boys and girls," Hermione finished. Then she shouted, "Battery, load!"

With gusto, batches of people launched into action, spiritedly barking as they worked,

"You heard the lady! Time to deliver some more of our presents to the Ministry fops!"

"Put your backs and wands into it, lads and lasses! We've got a party to crash!"

"Make sure that barrel's clean, 'cause this gun has some dirty work to do!"

They were using charm work to do everything necessary to prepare each gun for firing: loading the fuse, cleaning the inside of the barrel, loading a fresh gunpowder pack and finally loading the cannonball and packing it in. It took them only 30 seconds for them to load, which was especially something since skilled Muggle gun crews were able to load and fire them within a minute in the old days.

Hermione then finished using a charm to help aim the siege gun closest to her and yelled, "Ready, Harry!"

Seconds later, Ron, Luna and Justin – who were at the other guns – were also calling, "Ready!"

"Fantastic," Harry said, a smile on his face and his eyes ablaze. Then he brandished his sword towards the Jugson House and shouted, "For Hogwarts and Hogsmeade! Fire at will!"

"Aye aye, Harry!" Luna called, and she touched her wand to the fuse of the howitzer he was standing next to.

The shot from her howitzer tore through the largest second-floor window on the right side of the front, while the shot from the other howitzer, with Justin leading its gun crew, shattered the largest second-floor window on the left. Meanwhile, Hermione's and Ron's siege guns blew out more windows on the lower floor.

As each gun fired, the crashing and roaring made some of the onlookers cast sound-canceling spells near their ears, conjure earplugs or headphones or simply put their fingers in their ears. They also were startled to see that none of the guns was recoiling as they should normally be.

"Really glad you figured out how to charm these things to eliminate the recoil, Hermione!" Harry observed.

"Thanks, Harry, but I knew I had to look into that first," Hermione replied, returning Harry's smile. "That was one of the things that made these slow to fire back in the old days."

"What are you firing at them?" Lupin asked Harry. "I just know that's not just plain old Muggle iron round shot that you're shooting out of those!"

"Quite right, Professor Lupin!" Harry replied with a grin. "Various fillings for these cannonballs – Exploding Potion for all of them for more of a fragmentation effect, with various others added in. Some have Swelling Solution while others have boil-creating potion in them. We even added undiluted bubotuber pus to a few."

"I see!" Lupin replied, before adding longingly but with a smile, "God, I wish James and Sirius were here to see this...I can only imagine they know they're missing a hell of a time! Sticking it to a bunch of pureblood bigots using old Muggle weapons is a Marauder-worthy idea if I ever saw one!"

"Tell you what, Professor – go see Luna over there and tell her I'm letting you put a shot through one of those second-floor windows for Dad and Sirius," Harry said with a grin. Lupin couldn't resist saluting Harry, which Harry returned before Lupin hurried over to Luna's howitzer.

"Very cool thing to do, Harry," Alex said approvingly.

Harry made to reply, but before he could say anything, John saw something launched from the second floor towards Susan. He picked up on what it was and shouted, "Grenade!"

"Get down, Sue!" Ginny yelled, pushing her down to protect her. She then aimed her wand at the grenade – a large flask of dangerous-looking potion that reminded Harry and Hermione of Molotov cocktails somehow – and then swished and flicked her wand and shouted, "Wingardium Leviosa!"

It quickly stopped and hovered ten feet above and ten feet away. Ginny then used a Banishing Charm to hurl the grenade back towards the house, and it flew back through the second-floor window it had been thrown from, smashed on the floor and detonated. As it did so, there were more screams of pain from inside as what looked like gold-colored napalm ignited and started to spread fire along the second floor.

Ginny was startled, but she had a vindictive look still on her face and fired her favorite Bat-Bogey Hex through the same window for good measure.

"All right there, Sue?" Ginny asked, helping her up once she heard further screams from inside.

"Don't worry, Auntie got me used to things like that, Ginny. Lovely work!" Susan replied, making Ginny smile.

"Red Cat to Lightning!" Harry heard Katherine's voice saying over his radio. "Tell Ginger Pop I said great work with throwing that grenade back – it would have been bad if it wasn't for her quick thinking, but that just gave them a big headache. They're clearing off the top floor for the most part as that fire spreads."

Harry looked around to find out how Katherine was working that out, and his Seeker-trained eyes quickly saw a blur in the skies to the right of the house, deftly dodging curses fired by the defenders. She was clearly riding a broom, and judging by the speed and agility of the broomstick in question, it looked to be a Firebolt.

"Great work!" Harry said, clearly impressed. "What other surveillance equipment do you have?"

"Goggles enchanted for infrared vision, Harry," she replied.

"And the fact that they've got a fire up there isn't going to cause problems with that?" Harry asked.

"Trust me, Harry, it won't," Katherine reassured. Then she informed, "They're trying to concentrate their defenses on the first floor and barricade the front door while still keeping eyes on the windows – and by that, I mean they've got wands trained on them looking for any of us who would want to jump through."

"Brilliant," Harry said. "Keep us updated and make sure you take care of yourself too!"

"Don't worry, Harry, they couldn't hit the back side of a barn, much less me!" Katherine replied as she zoomed towards the other side.

"She'll be just fine, Harry," Ron informed. "Justin, Susan and Hannah were telling me and Neville something they heard from McGonagall and Sprout. Apparently, Katherine had her NEWT education here and was even Hufflepuff Seeker before Cedric."

"Was she, now?" Harry asked. "Oh, that'll work out great!"

"Seems to me like a flanking maneuver is in order...did you want us to put it into action, Harry?" Alex asked. John, Hercules and the American Aurors gathered around him as he finished.

Harry looked back at Madam Bones, and she nodded in both encouragement and agreement, making sure Alex saw her. He turned back to Alex and nodded, saying, "I know you said you and your Aurors have firearm training – how are your guns?"

"In great shape," Alex said, and then he turned to John, Hercules and the American Aurors and added, "But hold on. Don't use those until I give the word so that we have the benefit of surprise. We'll do this Yorktown-style, only with wands instead of bayonets. We'll sneak in close, grenade them and then unleash hell. Let's make sure we rake both sides of the building completely."

"Shall we unload the mags to make sure there's no chance?" John asked with a grin.

"I like that," Alex replied. As he spoke, he pulled an Uzi from an inner robe pocket and removed its clip before putting the gun and magazine into the same pocket separately. While watching the others unload their clips as well, he said, "All right, John, Lincoln, Russell, you're with me. We'll take the right side. Hercules, take the rest and go left."

They quickly nodded at him and split up into two columns, with an Auror at the front with a raised Shield Charm in a practiced technique.

"While they work on that," Harry remarked, "I'd rather we have even more potent ammunition to try to break that door down since it's bound to be heavy..."

"That can certainly be arranged, Potter!" McGonagall replied with a smile, and she pointed her wand at some of the chunks of rubble from the Jugson House that were approximately cannonball-size and called, "Accio!"

Some onlookers got out of the way of the heavy pieces of stone that were flying towards them and the Headmistress before McGonagall also conjured a cart that they landed in. She then quickly transfigured them into cannonballs and then split them open so they could be loaded with a particularly potent type of Exploding Potion that some of the other students were helping brew. They had already filled two flasks – one for each of the two American flanking teams.

Meanwhile, Harry was talking into his radio again. "Lightning to Red Cat. Ham and teams are getting into position and then we make our move. Keep eyes on them and make sure none of them tries something sudden or tries to escape. The only way they leave is in a body bag or with magic-suppressing handcuffs on them."

"You're singing my song, Lightning," Katherine's voice replied. "Nobody's trying anything funny yet, but if they do, I promise you'll be the first to know."

"Jordan, word to the French and young Mr. Weasley," Madam Bones said briskly. "Let's have them join Hamilton and the other Americans on the ground since we have Fleming keeping eyes on them from the sky."

"Of course, Madam Bones," Lee replied. Then he spoke into his radio, "River to Flower. White Queen says to join up with Ham and his teams since Red Cat is keeping tabs on them."

"Flower to River. Magnifique – we're on our way," Fleur replied gleefully.

"We're tightening the bloody hangman's noose around them." Madam Bones said with vindictive glee.

"It'll certainly be bloody if this succeeds," Harry said with a Marauder feral grin. "But I believe it'll be for them much more than for us."

Meanwhile, both teams of Americans had reached their spots outside the first window on either side – both of which had been blown out by the artillery bombardment – and had ducked out of view of the occupants, and the French plus Bill had joined up with them just in time.

On the right side, Alex nodded at John and the others with him, pulled out his Uzi and reloaded the clip. As the other Americans finished loading, he raised his wand and said quietly but clearly, "Accio potion bomb!"

He turned and saw the flask of Exploding Potion approaching, and then swished and flicked his wand and said, "Wingardium Leviosa!"

This time, it hovered a foot in front of his face. Next to him, John tapped the flask with his own wand twice. The potion inside began to bubble and flash ominously, and Alex needed no further cue. With a furious motion, he Banished the flask grenade through the window, and just before he took cover, he saw another grenade lobbed in from the other side by Hercules' team, aimed at the cluster of defenders behind the barricaded front door.

There were two loud and heavy bangs, clouds of dust coming from the windows, and a host of screams and groans from inside. Alex didn't hesitate, popping up and yelling, "Now!"

He opened fire with both his wand and his gun and started sprinting alongside the house, furiously using bullets to break the windows and target foes while also sending curses through, and the others both on his side and the other one followed his lead. They made sure to fire at an angle so that they didn't accidentally hit allies on the other side. From that other side, Fleur had no gun, but she was using her Veela powers to hurl fireballs with her off hand.

Seeing this, Harry also signaled, "Now!"

At his command, both siege guns fired on the large front door and blew it to splinters. The attackers needed no further urging, storming the house with full-throated battle cries, with British Aurors with raised Shield Charms as the vanguard.

There were sounds of spell fire and gunfire and the shouts of curses, hexes and charms. Then, rising above the tumult came one young woman's voice, calling, "Rush on, boys! The house is ours!"

Then there was a deathly chill that seemed to suck the very happiness out of the air, and that meant only one thing – dementors had appeared. The cold seemed to root almost everyone watching the house from the outside to the spot, and an equally chilling silence seemed to descend on the house and its surroundings.

Suddenly, there was a dreadful scream. It appeared to have come from a woman, and it seemed to be born out of fear and agony as if someone was facing – or enduring – a ghastly death. The sound made onlookers' blood run even colder than the dementors themselves did, and those outside the house suddenly worried if the assault had been successful.

Just as suddenly, there were Patronuses bursting from the house, and almost uncharacteristically, the dementors were seen fleeing from the house instead of merely gliding away leisurely. Those watching took heart but still held their breath until in groups of two or three at a time, the attackers began leaving the house.

Quite a few assault team members were holding handcuffed captives, and any of those who weren't were levitating bodies. Each corpse had a white sheet over it, but instead of being drawn all the way up to cover the head, the face was left visible. Onlookers breathed a large sigh of relief and smiled when they saw that two of the last bodies to be floated out of the house were those of Fudge and Umbridge.

Some who got close enough kicked the corpses or spit on them, and some were having to be persuaded to not string the bodies up in disgrace when they saw a casualty from the strike team finally being carried out of the house. Hannah and Hercules were helping carry Neville, who was unconscious and had a bloody forehead.

"Damn...it's not bad, is it?" Hercules asked.

"It can't be..." Hannah said, with her voice indicating she was trying to reassure herself too. She had sent Harry, Hermione and the others onward after she'd reassured them he'd be okay, but she felt some uncertainty. Then she finished looking him over and said, "Thank goodness...it's just a gash on the forehead and nothing else, so it looks worse than it is. Right, hold on..."

She pointed her wand at Neville's wound and said, "Vulnera Sanentur! Tergeo!"

Neville's gash closed and the dried blood disappeared from his face. Hercules then lifted Neville's head slightly so that Hannah could administer blood-replenishing potion. She then cradled his head with her heft hand, tapped his forehead gently with her wand and whispered, "Ennervate!"

Neville groaned slightly and blinked his eyes, trying to get a grip on his surroundings. Then he realized where he was and what might have happened, gasped and said, "Han! Did...did we get them all?"

"We did, Nev," She replied warmly, giving him a bright smile. "You got it the worst out of any of us, and it wasn't even them that did it. The ceiling partially collapsed and you got hit on the head by some debris."

Then she asked, "Take as much time as you need, but if you can stand, I hear we have a party to catch."


British Ministry of Magic Headquarters
Whitehall, Westminster, London, England, UK

Neville was astounded to find out from Hannah that they and Hercules that the party was in the Atrium of the Ministry, and everyone who had participated in Operation Rochambeau was there. When he arrived and was welcomed by Harry, Hermione and Ron, he was even more in awe at the excited spectacle that greeted his eyes.

Pro-Fudge and pro-pureblood supremacist banners and posters were being torn down and then shredded or burnt by the students among the strike team. In their places, the flags and banners that the attackers had carried were being raised. While some prisoners were still being led to DMLE holding cells, both Madam Rosmerta and her counterpart Tom from the Leaky Cauldron were happily passing out drinks to the victorious strike team and their allies.

"Blimey, Harry..." He said, wide-eyed. "We really aren't doing this by half, are we? I thought we might vanquish the bastards tonight, but I didn't think we'd cap it off like this before the sun came up!"

"Honestly, Nev, neither did I," Harry confessed. "But when Madam Bones came up with the idea, I certainly wasn't about to turn down a chance to not only kill the bigots, but also walk into their house, bury them and dance on their grave!"

"And we're glad you didn't turn it down, Harry!" Hannah exclaimed. "Here, Neville – Tom saved you a butterbeer."

Lee was excitedly broadcasting – now on main WWN channels with his voice transmitted not only throughout Britain and Ireland but also to America, France and even beyond – what had happened and what was happening. People were crowding around their radios, turning up their volume and hearing that the bigoted faction in the British Ministry led by its Minister had been forcibly overthrown in a daring operation, and those responsible included the Boy Who Lived, the descendant and namesake of an American Founding Father and their friends.

He was telling them that Madam Bones had been named as Fudge's successor, initially on an interim basis, when music then started up and the eyes of the crowd turned towards a sizable clearing around the Fountain of Magical Brethren.

Alex was standing in the middle of the clearing and facing the crowd. He was a fearsome figure because his red-and-gold trimmed gray Gryffindor vest under his robes was sprayed with blood, but it was the blood of an enemy. Music was already playing as Lafayette approached him.

[Lafayette] Monsieur Hamilton!
[Alex] Monsieur Lafayette!
[Lafayette] In command where you belong!
[Alex] How you say, "No sweat"?
We're finally on the field, we've had quite a run
[Lafayette] Immigrants–
[Alex/Lafayette] We get the job done!

They high-fived each other here to cheers from the crowd – with Parvati's, Padma's, Fleur's, Dean's and Seamus's voices being among the loudest – and continued,

[Alex] So what happens if we win?
[Lafayette] I go back to France
We bring freedom to our people if we're given the chance
[Alex] We'll be with you when you do
[Lafayette] Go lead your men!
[Alex] I'll see you on the other side
[Lafayette] 'Till we meet again – let's go!

The music then picked up still more and Alex led the crowd in the rallying cry that had begun it all at the Three Broomsticks, with a twist at the end:

[Alex/Crowd] I am not throwing away my shot
I am not throwing away my shot
Ay yo, I'm just like my country – I'm young, scrappy and hungry
And I'm not throwing away my shot
[Crowd] I am not throwing away my shot
[Alex] 'Till the world turns upside down
[Crowd] 'Till the world turns upside down

Alex guessed that they would be even louder, but he wasn't prepared for the noise and the energy, and it further energized him. He then continued, his voice reflecting the fear and resolve he had revealed to Harry and Hermione earlier in the Room of Requirement after telling them about Eliza,

[Alex] I imagine death so much, it feels more like a memory
This is where it gets me – on my feet, the enemy ahead of me
If this is the end of me, at least I have a friend with me
Weapon in my hand, in command, and my men with me!

Harry then came forward, met Alex's eyes and added in an urging tone,

[Harry] Then you remember your Eliza's expecting you
Not only that – your Eliza's expecting, too!
We gotta go, gotta get the job done
Gotta start a new nation, gotta meet your son!

Alex nodded at Harry, and more fire came into his eyes and voice. As Harry stepped away, he felt that more than he ever had, Alex was projecting a presence that seemed so powerfully like the one his ancestor had. Alex turned to the American Aurors who had helped with the flanking maneuver here and shouted,

[Alex] Take the bullets out your gun! (What?) The bullets out your gun! (What?)
We move undercover and we move as one
Through the night – we have one shot to live another day
We cannot let a stray gunshot give us away!
We will fight up close, seize the moment and stay in it
It's either that or meet the business end of a bayonet
The code word is "Rochambeau", you dig me? (Rochambeau!)
You have your orders now – go, man, go!

He then stepped aside and Hermione and Harry stepped forward together and continued.

[Hermione] And so the American experiment begins
With our friends all scattered to the winds
Laurens was in Diagon Alley, redefining bravery
[Hermione/John] We'll never be free until we end slavery!
[Harry] When we finally drove the bigots away
Lafayette was there waiting
[Harry/Lafayette] Like Chesapeake Bay
[Harry] How did we know that this plan would work?
[Hermione/Harry] We had some spies on the inside! That's right–

"Weasley and Mulligan!" They shouted along with Alex, John and Lafayette just before they made way. Fred, George, Lee and Tonks had come up with the idea of pulling coats using magic off of Ron and Hercules to reveal them, and just as they did so, the two of them jumped into the center to cheers and let fly.

[Ron] Blood traitors spying on a pureblood government
We took their measurements and information and then we smuggled it (What?)
[Hercules] To our brothers, revolutionary covenant
Dumbledore's Army and Sons of Liberty and we are loving it (Ooh-ooh!)
See, that's what happens when you up against the ruffians
We in this shit now – somebody's gotta shovel it
[Ron] Weasley and Mulligan – we need no introduction
When you knock us down–
[Ron/Hercules] We get the fuck back up again!

"Ha ha, whoo!" Hercules roared as the crowd let out one of its biggest cheers yet. Harry spotted Arthur and Bill glowing with pride, while Molly, who was with them, had proud tears openly streaming down her face.

A violin had been playing as part of the music, and it seemed to have even more vigor as images rose out of a Pensieve containing contributions from the strike team, showing not only how the Jugson House had been beseiged but also how it had been stormed and taken.

When everyone was through the doors and windows, Padma had disarmed rogue Auror John Dawlish right when he was about to fire a bone-breaking curse at Madam Bones, and Madam Bones had nodded at her gratefully and then conjured spikes that had flown through the air and pinned Dawlish to the wall by his wand hand and by the shoulder of his robes.

Meanwhile, Fudge had been aiming a Piercing Curse at McGonagall when Alex had snuck up on him, crashed into him and wrenched his wand so hard that the wand had been pointing at Fudge's own throat, meaning the resulting curse had passed through his jugular. It explained the blood that was sprayed across the front of Alex's vest under his robes – it had been the blood of the former British Minister of Magic, which Alex had shed.

It had also turned out that just two dementors had appeared – rogue ones that had come in from the side opposite to where Katherine had been. While Umbridge had stupidly tried to make them submit to her authority and sic them on the attackers, Harry and Hermione had come up with the idea to use their Patronuses to herd the dementors into Umbridge.

It was more successful than even they thought it would be, as both were driven into her and both tried kissing her. That had caused the horrible scream that had been heard in the street – the Senior Undersecretary and former Hogwarts Headmistress and High Inquisitor had had her soul ripped into two. Even though Umbridge was due for punishment and none mourned her, it had been so horrific to watch that many averted their eyes, with Hermione burying her face in Harry's chest.

The music had now become less intense, made up mostly of a bell tolling rhythmically. Alex and his fellow descendants then came forward in turn as the images of the remaining defenders surrendering once Umbridge and Fudge were dead appeared.

[Alex] After an hour of fighting
A young man with a torn mask stands on a parapet
[Lafayette] We lower our wands
As he frantically waves a white handkerchief
[Hercules] And just like that, it's over
We tend to our wounded, we count our dead
[John] Muggleborns and purebloods
Wonder alike if this really means freedom

"Not yet..." McGonagall replied.

Befitting the one-time head of Gryffindor, she had the carnivorous smile of a lioness after a kill as the music stopped. She produced Fudge's lime green bowler hat while Madam Bones produced Fudge's and Umbridge's wands, and as everyone turned to them, Madam Bones crushed both wands. She and McGonagall then pointed their wands at the hat and the remains of the wands and said, "Incendio!"

It was clear from the schadenfreude-laden looks from the onlookers as the hat and wand remains flamed out and smoke rose upwards that this was the most symbolic burning, and the Pensieve, as if it had a mind of its own, showed Umbridge's and Fudge's bodies being kicked and spat on by bystanders.

The music not only started again but began to build as well, and the tolling of the bell became more ominous but more invigorating. As it did so, Lafayette, John and Hercules stepped aside but stayed in the clearing and Harry, Hermione, Ron, Fleur and the others in the DA who had been at the forefront of the effort since the start of the term and Alex's arrival at Hogwarts joined Alex. They narrated one by one with increasing energy as the Pensieve continued to illustrate a lot of what they spoke of:

[Harry] We negotiate the terms of surrender
[Alex] I see George Washington's smile
[Hermione] We escort their men out of York town
[Ginny] They stagger home single-file
[Ron] Tens of thousands of people flood the streets
[Luna] There are screams and church bells ringing
[Dean/Justin] And as our fallen foes retreat
[Parvati/Padma] We hear the drinking song they're singing:

The Patil twins then led their female comrades in singing the phrase that Luna had intoned from Yorktown over two centuries ago:

[Parvati/Padma] The world turned upside down
[Fleur] The world turned upside down
[Ginny/Luna] The world turned upside down
[Hermione] The world turned upside down

The music had swelled again, and as it reached a spirit-lifting crescendo, the crowd was unable to hold back any longer, and Lafayette and Alex came forward and spurred them on.

[Crowd] Down, down, down, down!
[Lafayette] Freedom for America, Britain and France!
[Crowd] Down, down, down!
[Alex] Gotta start a new nation, gotta meet my son!
[Crowd] Down, down, down!

"We won!" Hermione cheered, throwing her arms around Harry.

"We won!" Harry echoed, his heart soaring as he hugged her back.

"We won!" Ron agreed, high-fiving both of them before they welcomed him into their hug.

"We won!" They shouted at the crowd, along with their DA comrades in the center, plus Alex, John, Lafayette and Fleur.

Hermione joyfully thought to herself that they did indeed sound like people who, against the odds, had turned the world upside down, and her belief was affirmed as the crowd sang back with all its might,

"The world turned upside down!"

The roaring cheers at the end were so loud that they partially drowned out the noise of some of Fred and George's enchanted fireworks, which they had set off in celebration.