While the outside world was in turmoil, the atmosphere within Hogwarts was far from tranquil.

The young wizards of Hogwarts were still abuzz with discussions about the recent incident on the Quidditch pitch.

Meanwhile, the Hogwarts professors had gathered in the Headmaster’s Office.

Soon, Professors McGonagall and Professor Snape arrived together, with Snape carrying a package in his hand.

Professor Snape placed the package on Professor Dumbledore’s desk, and the other professors gathered around to inspect it.

“Don’t be hasty; the issue lies not with the package, but with its contents,” Snape remarked somberly as he proceeded to open the package.

The assembled professors found a crumpled letter and an almost empty glass bottle inside the package.

Observing this, Professor Ilona who had just returned from Wentworth’s dormitory, was the first to restrain her curiosity and reached out for the letter.

However, halfway to the stationary, Professor McGonagall intercepted Professor Ilona’s outstretched arm.

“Professor McGonagall? What’s the matter? Can’t I read this letter?” Professor Ilona inquired, a hint of displeasure evident on her face.

McGonagall calmly replied, “Professor Ilona, patience is a virtue. We all wish to uncover the truth. But, have you not noticed that there is something amiss with this letter?”

Listening to Professor McGonagall’s words, Professor Ilona hesitated and withdrew her hand, scrutinizing the package with suspicion.

After a moment, Professor Ilona let out a surprised murmur and exclaimed, “This letter has a spell cast on it?”

Professor McGonagall nodded slowly, saying, “Indeed, it does. However, it seems to be a spell not commonly used in Europe. It resembles a Confundus Charm or even an Imperius Curse, yet it differs in its manner and effect from both.”

As she spoke, a hint of puzzlement crossed McGonagall’s face, and her gaze shifted to Dumbledore, who had been standing silently on the side.

Feeling the collective scrutiny of Professor McGonagall and the others, Dumbledore stepped forward and spoke slowly, “It’s Crucio. Its purpose is to instill a deep-seated hatred in the cursed individual, compelling them to obliterate their target at any cost. It is an exceedingly malevolent curse.”

Dumbledore’s explanation drew audible gasps from the Hogwarts professors present, even though they were generally well-informed.

“Then, Professor Dumbledore, why haven’t we heard much about such a malevolent spell?” McGonagall voiced the shared concerns of her colleagues.

After a moment of silence, Dumbledore responded, “Because this curse is exceedingly dark, comparable in its malevolence to the Unforgivable Curses. From the moment of its creation, it fell under the stringent supervision of the International Confederation of Wizards, strictly prohibited from dissemination or propagation.”

“Under normal circumstances, it remains confined to its region of origin, which is…” Dumbledore paused momentarily, contemplating whether to divulge further.

However, Ilona interjected boldly, “America!”

At the utterance of Ilona’s words, the assembled professors suddenly comprehended.

Yet, she was not finished and continued, “Professor Dumbledore, why not share the full story, the truth about this spell? Specifically, that the spell’s inventor was, in fact, an Auror!”

Ilona’s revelation prompted astonishment among the Hogwarts professors.

None had anticipated that such a malevolent curse could originate from the ranks of the Aurors.

Ilona continued with her narrative, “In the past, the wizarding world was far from the peaceful state it is today. The various Ministries of Magic engaged in fierce competition, surpassing cooperation. An Auror from the Magical Congress of the United States devised this curse, employing it to eliminate a high-ranking official from another country’s Ministry of Magic.”

“This transgression was eventually discovered by the International Confederation of Wizards, and the Auror was sentenced to life imprisonment. An attempt to erase the curse from the Auror’s memory was made using the Memory Charm, but the curse endured, albeit not widely spread.”

“Professor Dumbledore mentioned earlier that it only remained within its region of origin. To be more precise, it remained only within the United States…”

However, Dumbledore interrupted Ilona with a firm “Enough!” He addressed her softly, “Professor Ilona, it’s best not to make unfounded assumptions without evidence, don’t you agree?”

Upon hearing Dumbledore’s request, Ilona wore a wry expression but acquiesced, choosing not to continue speaking.

The other Hogwarts professors exchanged glances, expressing their curiosity regarding Professor Ilona’s unspoken thoughts.

Yet, out of deference to Dumbledore’s authority, they remained silent.

Ilona had no intention of engaging in a standoff with Dumbledore at this juncture.

Nonetheless, she had deduced the origins of the mastermind behind the recent events, an unexpected reunion that seemed inevitable.

Little did they know, they wouldn’t need to seek out the mastermind; the mastermind had already come knocking on their door.

It appeared that another confrontation was on the horizon.

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Published On: November 25, 2023

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