• Published 23rd Apr 2017
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Magic School Days - Dogger807

When the CMC asked Discord to help them attend magic school, he pulled an owl out of his hat. Only he didn't exactly have a hat. Which was okay, since their new school had a singing one laying around. Where the hay was Hogwarts anyway?

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Chapter 45: Walking Nightmare

He could feel again. He could hear again. He could smell again. The transfer was complete; he had a new body. The journey back to his homeland would not be required after all. He did not even try to fathom how lucky he was. It seemed almost impossible that there could have been another vessel so similar to the one that had been destroyed, but his magical senses had managed to lock onto it before he released his spirit from the old one.

This new form was still quite unfamiliar to him. With a beetle, he could tell exactly where he was. The senses on this new body were just too foreign to allow him to geolocate. However, he could still sense his own mana quite clearly. The extraneous female was within a few hour's travel. Before night came again, he would reclaim the power she had drained from him.

He opened his eyes, only to be greeted by darkness. Where was the love? What sort of monster would keep a beloved doll hidden in the dark? In his time, children kept their dolls close or left them on their beds.

As he processed his senses further, he realized he was pinned down by something soft and heavy. Had he needed to breathe, he would have been smothered. With an impatient snarl, he sent a pulse of raw magic upward, dislodging what was holding him down. As he struggled to sit up, he heard a muffled crack, and he found himself pinned by even more weight.

His hunger was even more biting now. That blast had cost far more mana than he could presently afford. This new body was simply too unfamiliar for him to use it to store mana. He would have to be patient and allow his spirit to settle into its new home. Although he had more power than before he had been ambushed, it would just be wasted unless he could store it for future use. He would have to suffer the slow, steady drain on his power for a while longer.

A bewildered man sat in a highbacked chair in front of his office fireplace. The rosy hints of dawn that bled past the curtains were an unfamiliar sight for him; the efficiency of his normal morning routine allowed him to sleep in much later than this. What happened last night, however, had upset the balance in his life, denying him the rest he would normally be enjoying at this hour. Something had changed; something had left a mark on his very soul.

As a master of occlumency, he was aware of every nuance of his mind and his body. As he meditated, he quietly winnowed through conflicting thoughts and disharmonious feelings. He had to root out what had roiled a normally-placid spirit. He had to resolve this disruption.

For as long as he could remember, his life had been a predictable series of disappointments. All that was left to him was his work. He had his duties. He had his obligations. He had to keep up appearances, even though this life corroded him from the inside out. He did not enjoy what he was doing; he was simply competent at it. He was a master of his craft; that secured his current position.

That was not to say that he was without ambition. Revenge would be his; he would keep his promise. Step by step, he had secured everything that he thought he needed, everything that he thought he wanted. He knew in his heart that all hopes he had of happiness had died over a decade ago. He knew there could never be anything to fill the hole that had been torn in his life -- until last night.

She had kissed him on the cheek. Before climbing into the pouch strapped to that owl's breast, she had kissed him on the cheek.

He was no hormonal child, swooning over every opportunity to propagate his line. He was a master of occlumency, master of his own mind, master of his own body, master over any of his base desires. No mere infatuation could defeat him; he would not fall victim to the same weakness that had claimed countless others.

She had kissed him on the cheek.

Though he had never indulged them, he was perfectly capable of sating his vulgar instincts by means physical or magical. There would be no repercussions even if he were seen patronizing those who were paid to bring satisfaction. There was no need to brood over what might have been, what might yet be.

She had kissed him on the cheek.

He was acting the fool. He had better things to do with his time. He would not let himself be distracted by nonsense.

“Lily would want you to be happy.” The memory came unbidden to his lips as he recalled the words of his colleague.

This was insanity. He had seen too many succumb before. What had he even been thinking to have gone as far as he had? Why had he agreed to having supper?

She had kissed him on the cheek.

He would not let himself be hurt again. The pain had almost been unbearable. He could not survive a repeat performance.

He was a fool.

She had kissed him on the cheek.

Before he had nothing, now, he had hope for . . . something.

“Wake, my love. It is time to start the day.” The musical voice in his dream did its utmost to drag him into reality.

“Dunnwanna,” Filius mumbled, refusing the grip of wakefulness.

“Oh, did I keep you up too late?” the voice mocked. “Shall we be less adventurous on school nights in the future?”

“Nuuguukkyuuevrnght,” Filius disagreed, and forced his eyes open.

“Good morning,” the voice softly greeted him.

"Good morning, Paola,” Filius finally managed with a smile. “It still amazes me to be so lucky to wake to such a dream.”

“Flatterer,” Paola whispered in his ear.

Filius tilted his head and responded to her nonverbally.

After a minute, Paola pulled back and said, “No more of that now. We have full days ahead of us.”

“Oh?” Filius said, not rising from where he lay, still half asleep.

“You’ve got classes to teach, and I need to return the artifact to the elders and inform them of my new status.

“You need to tell them that you’re with me now?”

“No silly, I’d already sent them an owl when that happened,” Paola said snuggling close to Filius. “I need to let them know I’m pregnant.”

Filius Flitwick’s eyes shot wide open. He was finally awake.

Dressed for the day, Andromeda Tonks threw a pinch of powder into her fireplace and called out a destination. Satisfied with the green flames, she knelt and stuck her head in.

“Severus?” she called out.

“Yes, good morning, Andromeda.” Andi was surprised that her target was sitting in a chair not far from the fire.

“Good morning, Severus,” Andi said. “How are you this morning?”

“I am . . .” Severus seemed to stop and consider for a second before finishing. “. . . well. Please, feel free to come through.”

“Thank you,” Andi said, stepping out of the flames into Professor Snape’s domain. “I won’t take much of your time this morning. I was just wondering if you had made any progress on our little pony problem.”

“As a matter of fact, I have consulted with the brewer, and we have discussed several options.”

Andi couldn’t put her finger on it, but something was wrong. “Did you come up with a solution?”

“We came up with several,” Severus Snape replied. “We identified a multitude of complex and ingenious elixirs that would be guaranteed to return Lupin to his original form.”

“That’s wonderful,” Andi said. No, not wrong, but different.

“The least involved would take a mere three weeks to prepare.”

“Oh?” Andi didn’t seem distraught by the news. “As long as there’s an end in sight. I could stand to watch Remus suffer through Nymphadora’s attention for three weeks. You should have seen her last night; she had him done up in pink ribbons. Nissy nearly had a fit when Dora gave him a bath.”

“However,” Snape said as he leaned forward in his seat, “we have decided to cheat. I have in my possession a ring that, when held in his mouth, should reverse the transformation. I am willing to lend it to you for a copy of your memories of the incident you have just described.”

Was that a smile? Befuddled, Andi looked at Severus. “I’m surprised you’re not making him suffer through the three weeks.”

“I promised someone I would get the cure to him with all due haste,” Snape admitted. “The memory would be a bonus.”

“You have a pensieve?” Andi was fairly certain that Severus had smiled, what was going on?

“It just so happens, I borrowed the headmaster’s last night to review some memories.”

“Okay,” Andi said cautiously. “It’s a deal.”

Intent on breaking her fast, Apple Bloom led the herd toward the Great Hall. Within throwing distance of their destination, she heard a professor call out her name. Turning in surprise, she saw their potions teacher approaching with a wide grin.

Wait. What? Apple Bloom took a defensive stance and growled, "Changeling."

“Luna!” Scootaloo said loudly, “Please cut it out; this isn’t funny.”

“Miss Bloom,” Professor Snape said when he drew near, “fifteen points to Gryffindor for bows in hair.” With those words, he swept by in a flurry of billowing black robes.

No one moved, and breakfast was forgotten. Every student who had been in the hallway gaped in the direction the potions professor had just departed. There wasn’t a closed mouth in sight, and several jaws needed to be picked up off the floor.

“Ow!” a Ravenclaw student shouted, breaking the silence. “Don’t pinch me! You’re awake!”

“Someone needs to go check the thermometer in hell,” another student suggested.

“What just happened?” Ginny asked out loud.

“Luna?” Scootaloo asked in a hopeful whisper. “Okay, you got me. Now please, make it stop.”

“Bay kon!” Magah insisted firmly, looking in the direction of her next meal.

Silence reigned once more.

The school office that had once been his sanctuary brought Dumbledore no comfort. There had been no rest, no respite. It was becoming increasingly more difficult to maintain coherent thought. Every time he closed his eyes, he was transported to the same place. What was this tiny cupboard under the stairs? Why did all the spiders take such perverse interest in him? There was nothing in his vast library of magic that helped. Every spell he tried had no discernable effect. Worse, the dreamless draught only ensured that he slept through the night. The nightmare returned, regardless of what he did.

Nonetheless, he still had his responsibilities. The new Minister had requested an audience, and the hour before breakfast was the least disruptive time in the headmaster's schedule. Dumbledore couldn't help but wonder whether he had stumbled into a new nightmare. This was the last person he would have imagined in that post.

“Good morning, headmaster. Sorry to wake you, but I have two things to ask of you today.”

Dumbledore sat up with a start, looking at the man seated across from him. “Good morning to you as well, Xenophilius.” Dumbledore gave a fatherly smile and let the twinkle enter his eyes, “I’m only too happy to help. How may I be of service?”

“Sanguis Lactantem mites,” the new minister said to him with a serious frown.

“I’m afraid I don’t follow you,” Dumbledore said, keeping up his smile.

“There is a Sanguis Lactantem mite outbreak,” Minister Lovegood said. “We simply must have everyone checked.”

“I’m sure you are over reacting,” Dumbledore said, “I’ve seen no signs among the students that would suggest any infestation, and the staff have their own daily decontamination.”

“That’s good, but we won’t know until it’s too late, and the entire school is infested. I insist that we do a full physical on every student.”

“That would be an untenable workload for our poor Madam Pomfrey,” Dumbledore said.

“She will have help,” Minister Lovegood returned. “St. Mungos will be sending some of their staff over to assist. They will arrive just after lunch.”

“Such an undertaking would greatly disrupt our routine,” Dumbledore argued. “It would not be in the best interests of the students.”

“Sanguis Lactantem mites would be worse.”

Dumbledore sighed to show his disapproval. “Very well, we shall do as you ask.”

“The second matter is of a more personal nature,” Lovegood said, not even acknowledging his victory. “My new duties are very time-consuming.”

“Yes, I dare say that they would be.”

“As such, I have less time to give my daughter the attention she deserves. I am aware that you admitted the Weasleys' youngest a year early because her core was mature enough. I’m asking that you do the same for Luna.”

“We are two weeks into the school year.” Dumbledore reminded him.

“Luna already knows most of the first-year material. I promise that starting late will not hinder her.”

“I’m afraid at this rate, I am going to have to rethink the wisdom of admitting students a year early.”

“That’s fine, as long as you do it after you admit Luna. I need her to be looked after while I’m looking after the country.”

“I am sure something can be arranged,” Dumbledore said. What was one more student in the overall picture?

“Oh, and I just thought of one more thing.”

“Yes.” Dumbledore said, thinking of the headache potion he had in his desk drawer.

“Amelia tells me that it’s hard to find applicants because so few wizards have their Potions N.E.W.T.”

“I can see where that would be a problem.” Dumbledore said with a small frown.

“It seems to me that we would have more available if students with 'exceeds expectations' could take the class and seeing how we are only two weeks into the term we could make that happen.”

“Severus will only accept students who have received 'outstandings',” Dumbledore calmly explained.

“It is not his call to make. Either see that he accepts 'exceeds expectations' or find another potions master who does.”

Dumbledore frowned and put some steel in his voice, “He has my utmost confidence that he can properly select the students best suited for his class.”

“He doesn’t have mine. Either see that he accepts 'exceeds expectations' or find another potions master who does. I have already talked to the new members of the board of governors on this, and they all agree. The school is here for the students, not for the professors. We need people with potion N.E.W.T.s more than we need the man you currently have employed.”

“You went over my head, Xenophilius? Has the power of your new office already gone to your head?”

“No, they came to me and this was their most pressing concern. There are going to be changes next year, but this needs to happen now.”

Dumbledore fumed, it was bad enough he had to put out fires in the Wizengamot, now it appeared the new board of governors was going to be a problem as well. “You leave me no choice. However, do be forewarned that failures in potions at that level tend to be lethal, or worse. I will talk to Severus about this.”

“When you do, let him know that Hampton Walker’s niece has just earned her Master's.” The Minister stood to take his leave. “She can start next week if needed.”

Professor McGonagall frowned as she made her way to the Great Hall for one of the three most important meals of the day. It was quiet -- too quiet. As she neared, she found the hallway lined with students staring toward the Great Hall, dumbfounded. “What’s going on here? Why are you all staring down the hallway as if you’ve seen a boggart?”

The spell was broken. Everyone else tried to answer at once. "I don't know." "I’m sure that didn’t really happen." "We’re having a shared dream." “Bay Kon!” "Professor Snape just gave Apple fifteen points for having a bow in her hair."

The statement about Snape was clearly preposterous. Professor McGonagall, probed further, hoping to deduce what had actually happened. “Are you saying that Professor Snape gave one of my lions points for no apparent reason?”

“Yes!” several students answered.

“That doesn’t seem likely. Miss Bloom, have you had any other recent contact with the potions professor?”

“Jus’ yesterday when Ah wrote a letter to introduce him to Zecora.”

“You introduced him to Zecora?” Professor McGonagall asked.

“Yes ma’am.” Apple Bloom nodded her head and her bow bobbed along gracefully.

“Fifteen points to Gryffindor,” said Professor McGonagall.

“Ah . . . thanks?” Apple Bloom accepted, baffled.

“What’s going on?” Madam Hooch asked, coming upon the small mob gathered in the hallway. “Why are you all just standing here?”

“Professor Snape is being nice,” a Hufflepuff said. “It’s rather unnerving.”

Madam Hooch’s eyebrows shot toward her hairline. “Who hexed him?”

“No one.”

“It seems our Miss Bloom introduced him to a lady, and they appear to have made a good impression on each other,” Professor McGonagall supplied

“Really?” Madam Hooch said turning toward Apple Bloom. “First of all, fifteen points to Gryffindor. And secondly, what’s wrong with her?”

“Pardon?” Apple Bloom asked.

“She likes Professor Snape, so obviously there’s a shoe waiting to drop around here somewhere,” Madam Hooch clarified.

“Bay Kon!” Magah reminded everyone.

“Zecora’s very nice.” Sweetie spoke up. “There’s nothing wrong with her.” Philomena trilled her agreement.

“Professor Snape sure seems to think so,” Parvati observed.

“Are you telling me that all we needed to do all these years was to get him . . .”

“Mr. Greyson,” Professor McGonagall snapped, “don’t you dare finish that sentence.”

Suddenly, from the direction of the Great Hall, the ground trembled as Hagrid came hurrying down the passage. “Professor McGonagall,” he called out upon seeing the woman, “ya have to come quick. Something's wrong with Professor Snape.”

“What seems to be the problem, Hagrid?” McGonagall gave him her attention.

“He’s being nice,” Hagrid said, “an' he keeps laughing under his breath. I swear, I heard him say ‘pretty pretty pony’ 'fore he started chuckling. It ain’t right, I tell you. It ain’t right.”

“Good going Apple Bloom,” Dean said. “You broke the potions teacher.”

“Yes,” a fourth-year Hufflepuff echoed, “good going. Do you think you could do it again?”

“Ouch! Stop it! I told you, you’re not dreaming!”

“Yer responsible fer this?” Hagrid asked, locking his eyes on Apple Bloom.

“Maybe?” she replied.

“Right then.” Hagrid drew himself to his full height. “Fifteen points to Gryffindor then. That sounds about fair.”

“Hagrid,” Professor McGonagall said, “you can’t give house points.”

“Well I have to try, now don’t I?” Hagrid said.

“Besides, I already gave her points,” Madam Hooch stated.

“Ye didn’t give her near enough, now did you?” Hagrid countered.

“Why do say that?”

“The Gryffindor counter ain’t full yet, now is it.” Hagrid answered.

“Bay kon.” Magah pouted.

Despite being cramped, the tiny room was replete with finery. As its occupant sat up on her bunk and rubbed her eyes with instinctively-balled fists, she was hard-pressed to decide whether her dreams or reality were more bizarre. She was a stranger in her own skin. Her forehooves were gone, replaced by those soft claw things that minotaurs had. She was some place where she was welcomed; even if the wizard hadn't transformed the decrepit cot into a comfortable, if narrow, bed, it would have afforded her the most comfortable night's sleep she had experienced since her exile. She was in a world of magic, but a magic that was completely foreign to her.

The previous night had been a rollercoaster of new experiences. Afflictions that would have permanently crippled a pony were cured by potions unknown to Equus. What appeared to be unicorn magic was cast via artificial means. The greatest wonder was what seemed to be a sort of teleport that could be cast without any special skills. At one point, it was decided that the home they were in was just too small. They had been taken, one by one, to the fireplace. There, they had been instructed to throw powder at the flames and say "Nott Manor". The subsequent journey was unique, to say the least, but it was definitely magical.

She and most of the other ponies who Discord had collected ended up in a much larger building. They had been welcomed by a human stallion, his wife, and their two small foals. Apparently, they had just moved into the building themselves and were more than happy to welcome the emigrants into their home.

Afterward, their hosts led them into a large ballroom where a buffet-style meal awaited. It was easy to see which mares had been eating regularly and which had not. More than one had been forced to empty their stomachs because they couldn’t keep down the sudden abundance of food. A few more lost it when they were told some of the dishes were meat. The surprise of being an omnivore left most of the mares unsettled.

“Good morning, Fizzlepop,” a voice said before she had focused on her surroundings. “I see that you’re awake. I was just coming to get you.”

Fizzlepop recognized the owner of the voice immediately. It was the one who had brought her here, a being who had once ruled the world and could rearrange reality with just a thought. Though no coward, she wasn’t stupid. Wincing at the necessity, she slid her meek mask into place.

“Good morning, Discord. How are you today?”

“I am doing well,” the man replied. “I was just talking to the people in charge, and they have decided that since you have no criminal record, you shall be given a lot more leeway than everypony else.”

“Leeway?” Fizzlepop asked. “Does that mean I will be able to start doing magic, like them, soon?”

Discord chuckled. “They spend years at school to be able to do that magic.”

“I’m willing to learn. Send me to school.”

“You are much older than a normal pupil,” Discord said. “I’m afraid having you in school would be as feasible as having Sun Butt as a student in magic kindergarten.”

Her face fell at the news. “I see. But I really want to do magic.”

“My dear,” Discord said, “did you not know? Those who cannot do, teach.”

Harry looked at the floor and grimaced. It was well out of his reach. Shifting his gaze, he looked at the ceiling under his feet. This wasn’t a new experience for him, but it was unsettling, regardless.

Turning to Parvati he asked, “How is this even possible?”

Parvati shrugged before sitting on the ceiling. “Magic.”

“I know, but still,” Dean said, imitating Parvati and sitting on the ceiling.

“At least the view is nice from up here,” Scootaloo commented casually.

“This is bloody brilliant,” Ron said, doing his best to support Hermione, who had latched onto him and was hanging on for dear life despite being as firmly affixed as the others.

“Belle! You’re a menace!” Daphne of Slytherin yelled from where she and her housemates huddled together on the other side of the room. They didn’t look particularly pleased to be in the same situation.

“We followed the directions exactly as they were written,” Sweetie protested, looking at her workstation below her.

“The potion was supposed to cure upset stomachs,” Seamus said. “How did you manage to reverse gravity with a potion intended to cure tummy aches?”

“The cloud of blue smoke was kind of cool though,” Abigail commented. “I don’t think there’s anything left in your cauldron, though.”

“I think we need to go over the basics with her again, Apple Bloom,” Ginny said, giving an experimental hop only to reconnect with the ceiling.

“Not in mah lab, we don’t,” Apple Bloom snarled

A voice called from behind the Gryffindors, “Miss Belle, Mr. Longbottom, detention with me after classes today.”

Arthur Weasley looked at the paper in his hands and said, “What’s this?”

“Rarity asked me to go through you if I needed any funds from the girls' vault. The last time I popped in caused quite the stir with the goblins.”

“Popped in?” Arthur studied the man before him, the kilt he wore should have pegged him as a Scotsman, but his accent didn’t match.

“It’s not my fault their security is so lax,” the man complained. “I did apologize afterwards.”

“You popped into a Gringotts vault?”


“You must be Mr. Discord,” Arthur said, holding out his hand for a shake. “I’ve heard a lot about you.”

“Pleased to meet you.” Discord shook the hand. “I have heard much about you as well. Thank you for inviting the girls into your home. That was very generous of you.”

Garrick Ollivander studied the woman who had just entered his shop. She looked both menacing and insecure at the same time, a volatile combination, to say the least. The scar over her eye did little to quell his concern.

“Good morning madam,” Ollivander said stepping into view. “How may I help you today?”

The woman slowly turned to assess him, expertly hiding her surprise. “Hello, I would like to buy my first wand.”

“Your first?” Ollivander said. “From your charming hair color, I assume you are from Equestria?”

“I am.”

“Shall I be expecting more custom from that source?”

“That is safe to say.” The woman stopped studying him and began scrutinizing the multiple of boxes stacked around. “Your government has accepted quite a number into your society already. After they are done processing them, I’m sure they’ll be filing through here.”

“Good, good. Are you aware that the Ministry subsidizes wand purchases for all students? Wands for adults cost the customer a significant amount more.”

“Discord has given me an advance and an allowance for supplies.”

“An advance?”

“Yes, I start work Monday.”

Madam Pomfrey looked at the ceiling of her clinic and winced. She hated it when the affliction altered the laws of physics. Sighing she said, “Professor Snape, would you kindly levitate one of your students down here?”

Neville gave a gasp as he closed in on the nurse’s position.

Madam Pomfrey began scanning her patient and said, “I suppose it’s all well and good that you are here now. The Minister has ordered an examination for all students, and there is no reason I shouldn’t begin with the lot of you.”

“I still have a class to teach,” Professor Snape reminded her.

“You are going to have to bring your afternoon class anyway. This way, it balances out in the end,” Pomfrey said, tapping her wand on Neville. His hair and clothes now draped toward the floor, rather than the ceiling. With a shrug, Pomfrey gestured with her wand, turning the boy and setting him feet-first on the floor.

Snape sneered and then levitated Malfoy. “Do the members of my house first. Most have missed out on a week of schooling as it is, and I intend to make the most of the time remaining.”

Pomfrey tsked and tapped her wand on Malfoy and repeated the procedure.

“Daddy! You're back!” A little bundle of joy jumped into her father’s arms.

“I told you I wouldn’t be gone long, my little peach blossom.” Xenophilius hugged his reason for living. “I was just securing your spot at Hogwarts this term so you can see your friend again.”

“She’s in Gryffindor, I want to be in Ravenclaw like you and Mummy.”

“The choice is yours, but remember, I’ll be proud of you, whichever house you pick.” He stroked her hair fondly. “Your Mum would be too.”

“I don’t want to leave you, Daddy.”

He continued hugging her before saying, “We all have to leave the nest sometime, my little turtle dove. You need to be out making friends, not sitting in an office with me all day talking politics.”

“I’m afraid.”

“Be brave, can you do that for me?”

“Yes Daddy. I will.”

Madam Pomfrey looked at her wand to confirm her latest readings. After Snape had left with the Slytherins, she was left with just the Gryffindors. She touched the pocket of her apron; the pensieve was still there. Cracking a greedy smile, she poked Lavender with her wand and said, “Change for me, my little pony.”

Author's Note:

I have just rewatched all of the Harry Potter movies, it reminded me of just how much is left out from the books. The Dursley's, Dumbledore and Snape are all treated with a much more positive light in the films.

Speaking of binge watching, I finally got my brother to watch MLP and he's finished everything on netflix. Imagine that :derpyderp2:

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