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Author Notes:

The seed of this bunny came from Zvoni.

This one was late seventh year.

"Can you imagine the uses for that spell?" I asked as Hermione and I entered the Great Hall.   We were coming from Charms class and had just learned a wonderful new spell.

Hermione sighed at my question.   "Like Professor Flitwick said, it's a very difficult charm to cast.   It takes a lot of energy."

"Well, yeah, but then I'd only have to remember one charm to undo any of the effects Fred and George do to us during their Wheeze testing.   It took you two days to look up the counters to the last one they sent to Ron," I pointed out.   It wasn't a critique of her, and she knew it.   The layering of the charms had also required Professor Vector and Madam Pomfrey to help unravel.

Hermione tried not to grin at the recollection.   "You do have a point, I suppose.   I know that Headmaster Dumbledore and Professor Flitwick have the power to cast it.   I expect that Professor -"

"Hey, Potty!" a voice shouted from immediately behind my left ear.

Instincts kicking in, I drew my wand, turned, and cast the first spell that came to mind.   "Finite Totalus!"   Okay, not the best dueling spell in the world, maybe, but I was proud of my reaction time anyway.

Draco Malfoy smirked at me, not even bothering to try to avoid the spell.   "Casting a spell at a student who doesn't even have his wand out?   I'm afraid I'll have to dock you points for -"   Malfoy's face twisted up in confusion as he broke off what he was saying.   He brought his right hand up and grabbed it with the left one, his face grimacing.   Next, he ran his hands quickly over his chest and then down his legs.   It looked like he was the victim of an Itching Hex.   "What'd you do to me?" he demanded, hands rubbing all over himself and writhing in place.   "Do something," he next commanded Crabbe and Goyle, voice edging toward panic.

The two lumbering Slytherins were clearly at a loss as to what, exactly, to do.   They drew their wands but didn't aim them at anything.

I just watched the whole scene in utter confusion, panting a little from the power of the spell I'd just cast.

Snape, McGonagall, and Dumbledore arrived from the direction of the Head Table while Malfoy was still dancing in place.

"What'd you do to him, Potter?" Snape snarled.

"Nothing!" I insisted.

McGonagall's lips thinned.   "We saw you cast a spell at Mr. Malfoy, Mr. Potter.   We know you cast something at him.   What was it?"

"Finite totalus," Hermione answered, watching Draco curiously.

Dumbledore's eyebrows crawled upwards.   "Indeed?" he asked blandly, tone totally at odds with the intent expression he was suddenly wearing.

Draco, meanwhile, was visibly changing.   His hair grew out a few inches first.   Next, his face's lines shifted slightly, becoming slightly more rounded.   Most noticeable, however, were the changes to his body.   His stance changed subtly and he suddenly had two objects poking forward from his chest.

My jaw dropped open.

Draco Malfoy had changed into a young woman.   She was beautiful in a classical sense; the Malfoys and Blacks did not produce homely magicians, Bellatrix notwithstanding.   Despite the physical beauty, there was nothing at all alluring about the new version of Malfoy.   There was no softness of expression or manner.

Meanwhile, Malfoy, eyes huge, was looking down the top of his (her?) robes.

All of the other students in the stunned silent Great Hall were blinking in utter consternation at the unexpected sight.

Snape found his voice first.   "Potter!" he bellowed.   "I'll see you expelled for this attack!   I demand you reverse this curse immediately!"

"I can't!" I protested.   "I didn't do anything to him.   Hermione already told you that I only cast the Finishing All Charm!"

"But . . ." Snape seemed incapable of believing that I wasn't somehow at fault, yet he also didn't know what else to say.   If I weren't so shocked and worried, I would have found the sight to be funny.

"Make him fix it!" Draco demanded in a high-pitched, nasal voice.   To emphasize his point, he stamped a foot.   I managed not to laugh at both the voice and the utterly childish action.   The Firsties were better behaved than this ponce.

"Let us go to the Infirmary where Madam Pomfrey shall check you," Dumbledore said, eyes twinkling like a pair of miniature suns.

Snape merely growled at Crabbe and Goyle, keeping them from following.

McGonagall used a more diplomatic approach to her lions, "Miss Granger, please stay here.   I shall accompany Mr. Potter and see that he is not . . . unjustly punished."

I breathed a sigh of relief.   I didn't see how I could be punished for casting a Finishing Spell on him, but "Snape", "Potter", and "reason" are rarely in the same sentence.   Or castle as the case may be.

Hermione nodded.   She continued on through the Great Hall and took her regular seat at the Gryffindor table.   She was immediately besieged by students asking for a recounting of what had happened.

Meanwhile Dumbledore led the four of us toward the Hospital Wing.   Draco spent the time whining to Snape in his very annoying new voice.   Behind them, McGonagall and I didn't speak, but I was thankful for her silent support.   I think I saw her mouth twitch once or twice, but I decided not to investigate too closely.  

In short order, we all came through the doors of the Hospital Wing.

Madam Pomfrey looked up from Neville (his potions accident yesterday was severe enough keep him a couple days, I surmised) and came toward us, pulling her wand out already.

She paused in her approach and looked at Malfoy curiously.

Snape answered the unasked question, "Potter did something to Draco Malfoy."   Venom was absolutely dripping from his words.

My jaw clenched, but I didn't say anything.   Long experience had proven that trying to protest my innocence, provable or not, was pointless when it came to the utterly biased Potion's Master.

McGonagall, bless her heart, wasn't under such restrictions.   "Severus!   You heard what he and Miss Granger said when we confronted him.   He only cast a Finishing Spell."

Snape glared at me.   Trying to keep a neutral expression, I looked back, raising what feeble Occlumency barriers I had.

McGonagall made an exasperated noise.   "Harry, may I check the last spell cast by your wand?"

I readily handed my wand over, and she cast, "Prior Incantato."   An indistinct shape formed in front of my wand, undulating slowly.   The pattern evidently meant something to the three professors, because they all studied it for a few moments.

Dumbledore and McGonagall abruptly relaxed.   Snape's scowl somehow became deeper.

McGonagall handed me my wand back with a smile.   She turned back to Snape, face becoming implacable.   "As they said, it was simply a Finishing Spell."

Snape sniffed disdainfully and pointedly turned away from me, much to my relief.

Hoping to escape the notice of the professors, I shuffled over to Neville.   "How're you doing?"

"I'm fine," he answered distractedly, eyes on Pomfrey and Malfoy.   "Harry, what in the name of Merlin is going on?"

I explained the situation to him quietly.

At the end, he looked up at me in a combination of humor, awe, and worship.   "Should he change his name, then?   I mean 'Draco' is male.   'Dracola', maybe?" he finished with a wicked grin.

I quickly smothered my snickers.

"'Dracine' is more likely," McGonagall whispered.

I almost yelped.   I had no idea she was nearby, let alone that she'd overheard our quiet conversation.

Mortified, both Neville and I looked at our Head of House only to find her lips quirking up at the corners.

The doors of the Infirmary burst open and Pansy Parkinson barreled in, immediately making for Malfoy's side.   "Oh, Drake!   What has that half-blood monster done to you?"

I rolled my eyes at her dramatics.

Pomfrey had been casting diagnostic spells all the while and now answered the question.   "Mr. Potter did nothing directly, Miss Parkinson.   Instead, he released a spell that had been there all along.   Do any of you know about the Patrus Potion?"

McGonagall looked surprised, amused, and then neutral again all in the space of a heartbeat.   Dumbledore blinked once before his twinkling resumed, even brighter than before.   Snape looked livid.   Pansy looked as confused as I felt.

It was Neville who answered, "You mean that potion is real?"

I turned to him.   "Huh?" I asked eloquently.

"It's something of a myth among the pureblood families, Harry.   It's a potion that will change a female baby into a male.   The original purpose was to guarantee a male heir."

"It is no myth," Snape grumbled.   "It does indeed exist, roughly as described.   A simple Finite would release the change at anytime in the child's life."

"Which is why I found evidence of a very powerful Magic Locking Charm," Pomfrey added.   "I would hazard a guess that Mr. Potter's spell shattered the spell lock - an impressive feat in itself - and then also the results of the potion."

"Rumor has it that the potion is classified as a dark art," Neville hesitantly added.

"Yes, indeed," Dumbledore agreed easily.   "There is a heavy fine associated with proof that the potion has been used.   I shall have to inform Lucius that it has been proven to have been used upon his . . . child.   The list of possible perpetrators will be short, I suspect.   It must be administered within hours of birth.   It will not work properly after that point."

"My father wouldn't do that to me!" Malfoy protested, still in that voice that made me want to give in to my homicidal impulses.

"Are you absolutely certain?" Dumbledore asked him simply.   When Malfoy didn't respond beyond a glare, Dumbledore went on, "I must take my leave.   I shall contact Lucius to begin the investigation immediately.   Please come with me, Severus.   Good day, Minerva, Poppy, Miss Parkinson, Mr. Potter, Mr. Longbottom, Mr. Malfoy."   He made it one step before he stopped again and turned.   "My apologies.   I meant, Miss Malfoy."   He made his escape, a visibly fuming Snape in tow.

I bit my lip at Malfoy's expression at that.   Neville was slowly turning red and shaking slightly.

After another few moments of gaping, Malfoy turned to Pomfrey.   "Fix this," she commanded flatly.

Pomfrey kept her composure and answered calmly, "There is nothing to 'fix' in this case.   Nothing is actually wrong with you."

"Dammit, I ordered you to fix me!"

I have to give the woman credit.   She held her composure.   "As I said, there's nothing broken.   Now, you're perfectly healthy, so you're free to leave.   If you have any questions or problems with any, shall we say, feminine needs, I will be happy to explain things to you."  

Malfoy let loose a screech that made me wonder if Crookshanks was being tortured somewhere nearby.

"A WOMAN?" Malfoy bellowed.   "I refuse to spend the rest of my days in the form of a worthless bitch!"

Pomfrey and McGonagall's eyes narrowed.

Pansy, though, had the more energetic reaction.   "Is that all you think of me?"   She hauled off and slapped Malfoy across the face, leaving a red handprint.   Apparently done with berating her former boyfriend, Pansy burst into tears and ran from the room.

Pomfrey stood, ignoring the expression forming on Malfoy's face.   "I need to go and congratulate Narcissa on her fine daughter.   Good day."

Growling, Malfoy also moved toward the door.

McGonagall nodded pleasantly to Neville and me, following Malfoy closely.   I spotted Crabbe and Goyle standing out in the hallway for a moment before the Infirmary door swung shut again.

The instant the door closed, Neville and I collapsed in laughter.

I pulled myself together and left after a quick goodbye to Neville.

Out in the hallway, everyone had already scattered.   I headed back toward the Great Hall and my interrupted lunch when Ron came striding toward me.

"Hey," I greeted him, fighting the grin back down.

"Hey.   I finished talking to Flitwick and tried to find you at lunch.   Ginny said you were down here.   You alright, Harry?"

"Yeah, everything's fine," I assured him.

"Good," Ron said, falling into step beside me.   "Hey, I passed Crabbe and Goyle in the hall on the way down.   Do you know who that babe was?"

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Author Notes:

One of the reviewers (Euphemism) summed this chapter up as such:

Ingredients for the Patrus Potion - 500 Galleons
Fine for Administering the Patrus Potion - 50,000 Galleons
Tuition to put Harry Potter through Seven Years of Hogwarts so that he could learn the Finite Totalus Charm - 1400 Galleons
Getting Ronald Weasley to hit on Dracine/Dracola Malfoy - Priceless.