Harry, blissfully unaware of the ICW’s decision, eventually found himself on the Hogwarts Express with all the students heading back to the castle after the new year, reunited with Neville, Hermione, and Luna.
Hermione haunted them all with a nightmarish description of being able to hear, but unable to do anything else while petrified, prompting a group hug as everyone tried to comfort her.
According to the rumors, everyone who’d been petrified for longer than a few days needed to be seen by a specialist.
“But then why didn’t they try to wake everyone sooner?” Harry asked, outraged that people had been forced to wait for so long in what amounted to total isolation and sensory deprivation.
“Apparently,” Hermione lowered her voice to a whisper, “As long as no one was genuinely injured, Hogwarts did not have to report the attacks. Most petrification victims don’t remember anything about being petrified, but no one had ever been petrified by a basilisk before, so when that came out the restorative potions were ordered from a specialist immediately, but I was only out for a day, you on the other hand,” she pointed at Harry and reached into her bag, eventually pulling out a muggle newspaper, specifically one of the British papers about magic being real. “You broke the International Statute of Secrecy beyond repair! Harry, you’re going to be in so much trouble!”
Looking only slightly sheepish, Harry replied, “That was partially Uncle Jet Jaguar’s idea, but more importantly if I was in trouble, don’t you think they’d have done something, I don’t know, a week ago? They’d hardly want a felon aboard the train with children after all.”
Neville and Luna were reading the article with strange expressions on their faces, as though caught between intense shock and utter horror.
“Harry,” Luna said in a small voice, “Hermione is right, you’re going to be badly punished for this.”
“Even if — probably especially because the law’s been broken beyond repair.” Neville added.
Mildly worried now, Harry put on a brave face and said, “It’ll all turn out okay, I promise. Don’t worry so much.”
The rest of the trip passed in relative peace, apart from occasional muggleborn students thanking Harry for exposing the world because it meant that they could share things with their families now. Some students, mostly Slytherins, shot him dirty looks as they passed, but that was nothing new and Harry paid it no mind.
It was when they started arriving at the carriages that things took a turn for the worse.
Aurors were there, checking all the students, but only until they spotted Harry. Then they made a beeline for him.
They were also glaring.
“Harry James Potter,” one of them began in a tone filled with suppressed rage.
Harry made an on the spot decision and loudly replied, “Is this where I get my Order of Merlin for taking care of the basilisk?”
Students were already watching the scene, eager to see how it played out. The Slytherins had hungry expressions on their faces.
“No Potter, this is where we place arrest you for breaking the International Statute of Secrecy, the Wizarding World’s most sacred law!”
“Seriously? If I was actually in trouble wouldn’t you have done it a week ago when this actually happened? My address isn’t exactly a secret you know.”
The aurors all flushed with anger, and Harry had an epiphany.
“None of you have any idea how to get to my home, do you?”
The lead auror raised his wand.
“Enough Potter! Are you going to come quietly or not?”
Harry counted. There were five aurors and they all had their wands trained on him.
“When can I expect my trial?”
“Trial? Ha! The ICW tried you in absentia boy, it’s straight to Azkaban for you!”
Harry nodded his understanding, sighed, and then yelled, “EVERYONE OWL THE MEDIA!”
At that point he got hit by spells of some kind and knew no more.
“Lily, it’s him, take Harry and run! I’ll hold him off!”
That night the Wizarding World’s newspapers had a single front page article on the “Boy-Who-Betrayed.”
The next morning the newspapers of the muggle world had a different headline: “Wizards Put Child in Secret North Sea Prison.”
At the same time, on the opposite side of the world, Godzilla woke in the dead of night.
Many years ago he’d sensed Minilla’s distress and come to his aid as quickly as he could. But now he could sense Harry in danger.
He set off, following his instincts. Minilla would be safe for the moment. Anguirus and Rodan would know to look after his child in his absence. With a roar that announced his departure on a mission, he stepped into the sea.
“Dumbledore,” Cornelius Fudge blustered, “You’ve got to fix this. The muggle prime minister won’t leave the portrait we’ve put in his office alone, he keeps insisting that we release Potter, and the portrait is so annoyed he’s started on me to avoid listening to the man.”
The aged headmaster paused in thought. He’d never had to deal with a muggle politician, how was he to know what to do?
From his perch beside the headmaster’s desk, Fawkes started to sing, and with the beautiful music going through his mind Dumbledore had an idea.
“Cornelius, all you need to do is have him obliviated, and ensure that he his told afterwords that the problem is being taken care of.”
Fudge gawked at him, “But, the muggle news-”
“Will hound him, not you, and honestly Cornelius, considering your concerns about the purity of blood, I didn’t think you’d care about the muggle news.”
Fudge paused for a moment as that sank in. “Yes, yes, you’re onto something there. Thank you, Dumbledore, now if you don’t mind I’ll be on my way.”
With that the Minister of Magic stepped into the fireplace and returned to the Ministry, leaving Dumbledore and Fawkes to congratulate themselves on another problem solved.
“Stand aside you silly girl!”
Meanwhile the Secretary General of the United Nations processed all the information on his desk, Jet Jaguar standing guard at his side, and a wizard in a plain robe in front of him.
“So, correct me if I am wrong, but as a society, these wizards have decided to ‘obliviate’ their direct liaisons with our world — to erase their very memories — and simply ignore us, while leaving the child to rot in a prison guarded by creatures that are demons in all but name?”
The wizard flinched under his gaze, but replied, “Yes. As muggles — nonmagical folk that is — they see you as little more than barbarians; many have the same prejudice towards people like me — muggleborns; wizards or witches born to muggle parents. Truthfully, they don’t believe they are answerable to any other authorities, and even if they agreed to listen to you, they’d dismiss anything you got them to agree to as ignorable the moment you left.”
The Secretary General considered this for a moment. “And you are sure that the approval to lock the boy in Azkaban was unanimous?”
At that moment an aid came in with a sheet of paper, handing it to the Secretary General, who looked at it and then recoiled.
“How long has he been gone?”
“The sensors indicate that he submerged some time last night.”
He processed this information as well, before sighing heavily and saying, “I will contact the appropriate authorities, but I fear that they are about to receive an object lesson in just how destructive a kaiju can be.”
“No, not Harry! Take me instead, anything but Harry!”
Godzilla’s blood was chilled by these cold northern waters, but rage kept him warm and he persevered. Every moment that passed Harry’s distress seemed to increase. The child’s fear was almost palpable at this point. He surfaced briefly to gauge how far he had come.
He had no way of knowing this, but he was currently in the Barents Sea, south of Svaalbard and a ways northwest of his destination. Dissatisfied, he submerged once more.
Azkaban Prison was a formidable place. Atop a rock just barely large enough to hold it in the dead center of the North Sea, the dark structure was the only legacy of the little known and profoundly insane dark wizard Ekrizdis. He had made a habit of luring muggle sailors to his island and then tormenting them with the worst forms of the Dark Arts. So terrible were his deeds that the very walls were imbued with dark magic, and those first explorers who’d found the island after his death refused to speak of what they had seen, only warning others that the place was infested with dementors and that those were the least terrible things on the island. The location was so saturated with evil that in the days after its discovery, experts cautioned that any attempt to destroy the fortress would cause some terrible, intangible will to seek vengeance.
Now, some five centuries later, it had been magically expanded to house the worst of the magical worlds’ prisoners, those for whom there could be no redemption and no mercy. The only guards were the dementors themselves, for they were the only ones who could endure the conditions on the island and in the old fortress.
And one child. Twelve year old Harry James Potter.
Harry knew that his parents names had been James and Lily. He knew that they’d died for him.
And thanks to the dementors he knew exactly how that had happened.
His father had apparently tried to fight off Voldemort and perished in the attempt. During a lucid moment Harry hoped he was resting in peace. He also knew that Voldemort had tried to spare his mother for his own inscrutable reasons, but that she had refused utterly and died trying to protect him.
In another lucid moment as despair began taking him, he asked, “Was it worth it, Mum?”
The cell was cold. Extremely so. His only relief was the fire he could breath, and even that only in short spurts. This whole place and everything about it seemed designed to drain away the will to go on.
Harry felt the chill in the air heralding an approaching dementor and gave an involuntary shudder that had nothing to do with the cold.
And then he heard an earsplitting roar and the fire inside him that had almost gone out flared with new vigor.
Godzilla surfaced from the ocean beside Azkaban and let out a roar of unbridled fury. The moment he’d approached the accursed rock he’d begun to remember things. Horrible things. The worst parts of his life.
His last days as a dinosaur, a lonely existence as the last of his kind.
The hydrogen bomb’s fire and radiation.
The agony of his transformation from the last dinosaur into the first of whatever he was today as his blood boiled, bones splintered, and organs shifted and changed, even as he refused to die.
Seeing Minilla, the only other of his kind and the only hope he had for a family at the mercy of Kamacuras and later Kumonga.
He did not know what this island made Harry see. And truthfully, he did not care because it ended now.
He sensed Harry on the far side of the structure. Good. It allowed him to tear this side asunder.
His dorsal spines flared blue and then azure death ripped into the walls of the fortress. Shrill cries came from cloaked figures as they burned to death, and tiny prisoners screamed in utter terror of the monster bearing down on them.
Godzilla reached into the prison and began tearing it apart with his claws, crushing and tearing stone as easily as the witches, wizards, and dementors that sought refuge in the structure’s walls.
Sirius Black, currently in his animagus form — that of an enormous black dog — did not know what was happening except for a couple of things. First, he might be deaf after whatever that noise was, and second, the prison was crumbling all around him. This was his best chance for freedom!
He headed towards the disturbance, only to double back on seeing the thing that was destroying the prison.
His first thought was that it was a dragon, but no dragon had ever grown so large or looked at anything with such hatred and rage in its eyes.
His best chance for survival was in the opposite direction and hoping that the tremors had broken the door open.
Other prisoners that were attempting to escape returned to their cells at the sight of him, believing him to be the legendary grimm, the omen of imminent and inescapable death.
He saw the doorway, he was so close, and then he saw something out of the corner of his eye that chilled him more than any dementor ever could.
At first he thought it was just a dementor looming over someone about to die to take their soul before death took it, but even in his haste to get away he noted the poor man’s resemblance to James. But James was dead, and he hadn’t had any family left except—
Harry! It might be a dying hallucination, but Sirus could not take that chance. He lunged at the dementor with all the strength he could muster.
It fought him, but it dropped Harry, choosing instead to use both hands to attempt to strangle him. He bit its horrible neck, trying to ignore the taste of putrescent flesh and the funeral shroud it called a cloak that punished him for that. With surprising strength, the dementor pried open his jaws and threw him to the ground.
He’d never been thrown by a dementor, but he got back up. He glanced toward the boy and they made eye contact.
Those were Lily’s eyes on James’s face. Sirius didn’t even want to know why Harry was locked up here.
No, that was wrong. He wanted to know quite badly and then he wanted to tear out the throat of whoever was responsible, but that could wait. There was still a dementor bent on taking Harry’s soul, and that was not going to happen.
To his surprise, Harry got up. He needed to use him to steady himself, but he stood up and he looked like he was ready to fight too.
And then Sirius got the shock of his life as Harry inhaled deeply and then exhaled a stream of blue fire right at the dementor.
It let out an unholy shriek the likes of which Sirius had never heard before and hoped he’d never hear again as it fled the room flailing.
Harry collapsed immediately afterward, and Sirius move to check on him, but stopped when he heard a rumble and a crash. He looked back and saw that the cell’s entrance had collapsed, they were trapped here.
Unsure what else he could do, Sirius curled around Harry protectively.
More rumbling and the entire ceiling was ripped away in an instant, and there it was. The monster that had destroyed the prison and would no doubt end their lives. It was even looking down now, singling them out.
The monster growled softly and then ripped the walls of the cell away. Before Sirius could do anything though, it gently scooped the both of them up and held them in its enormous hand.
Sirius couldn’t help it. He fainted.
Godzilla looked into his hand. Harry looked to be pale and cold, but otherwise fine. The shaggy beast looked emaciated, but from what he’d been able to sense it had protected Harry, which was good enough for him. He set off towards the Atlantic. They’d be taking the longer, warmer way back to Monster Island.
Godzilla paused some distance away from the rock that had held the prison and looked back. Then he blasted it with the atomic ray. After five-hundred years of bringing despair, Azkaban was utterly destroyed and the rock it had stood on sank into the depths of the sea.
No dog, boy, or kaiju noticed the dark mist that rose out of the water and seemed to dive into one of the dying prisoners in the water, who gasped and then vanished with a faint popping sound…