Until the International Wizarding Federation’s Confidentiality Law was implemented, the Ministry of Magic believed that a well-secured wizarding prison was necessary to detain those witches and wizards who had committed numerous crimes.

The Ministry aimed to confine particularly powerful wizards there before resorting to more stringent imprisonment measures.

The Ministry initially planned to build a new wizarding prison on the remote Hebrides islands of Scotland.

However, the newly appointed Minister of Magic, Mr. Damocles Rowle, rejected this proposal.

Instead, he chose Azkaban Island as the location for the new prison, citing the Dementors residing there as a valuable advantage.

The Dementors could effectively guard the prison, saving the Ministry time, trouble, and expense.

The plan was swiftly executed, and Azkaban Prison was established within two months.

It has served as an adequate detention facility for wizards for over two hundred years.

Mr. Cornelius Fudge returned to their camp located in a secluded corner of Azkaban Island, perched on a massive reef.

The camp consisted of a small, run-down cabin that endured minimal influence from the Dementors.

Several special commissioners from the Ministry of Magic stationed in Azkaban rested there.

Entering the dilapidated hut, Fudge hurried to the fire to dispel the cold.

Despite the storms battering the windows, the relentless waves crashing against the cabin walls, and the gusting wind shattering a few broken windows, Fudge felt a sense of relief.

“Cornelius, how is the situation? Anything unusual tonight?” another man in the cabin asked.

“Nothing out of the ordinary, Gard,” Fudge quickly replied.

Gard, a special commissioner belonging to the Auror’s office, was a young and promising Auror who might soon be transferred from the island.

The thought made Fudge slightly envious of wizards like himself.

He would have to wait until retirement if he wanted to leave Azkaban.

“But I sense something strange about tonight’s Dementors,” Gard frowned. “Something doesn’t feel right.”

“Don’t overthink it, young man!” Fudge’s mood improved as he dried himself from the rain.

He jokingly added, “The criminal capable of escaping from Azkaban has likely not been born yet.”

To be honest, Cornelius Fudge’s statement was not an exaggeration.

Azkaban had maintained a perfect record of zero escapes in its nearly two-hundred-and-seventy-year history.

The witches and wizards imprisoned within its walls had no record of successful escapes, for the Dementors made it impossible.

Throughout the years, many “intellectuals” in the wizarding world have contemplated the existence of Azkaban.

Its treatment of criminals was deemed excessively cruel, causing even initially ordinary and non-dangerous prisoners to rapidly lose their sanity.

A cemetery had even been established to bury those who succumbed to depression.

While numerous individuals questioned the prison’s existence, the Ministry of Magic steadfastly defended its position, relying on the flawless record of zero escapes.

“Alright, Garter, come and have some grilled sausages!” Mr. Fudge cheerfully suggested. “In this cold weather, a few grilled sausages and whiskey feel like heaven.”

As he spoke, he began skewering the sausages.

Gard had no objections and quickly joined in to assist.

The entire cabin soon filled with the aroma of the barbecue.

A few hours later, a fully satiated Mr. Cornelius Fudge fell asleep.

However, his slumber was short-lived as a loud explosion jolted him awake.

“What’s happening?” Mr. Fudge hastily arose from his bed, his portly figure scrambling. He bellowed loudly.

Simultaneously, he instinctively grabbed his wand from the pillow.

“Cornelius!” The bedroom door swung open, revealing Gad and another commissioner from the Ministry of Magic.

Both were armed. “It seems someone is attempting to escape from the prison!”

Mr. Fudge was taken aback. He swiftly donned his wizarding robes and dragon leather gloves.

He followed the other two as they dashed out of the cabin.

An old rowboat awaited them at the shore, and they boarded it hastily.

The boat sped towards Azkaban Island.

In the sky, countless Dementors floated about—hundreds, even thousands; perhaps all the Dementors on Azkaban Island had been mobilized.

Dressed in their black cloaks, they fluttered around the island, emerging from every direction in an impatient search.

Fudge’s vision blurred, and he desperately tried to think of happy thoughts.

Dementors’ attacks often spared no one.

The Ministry of Magic had encountered cases where their special agents fell victim to the Dementors.

“Expecto Patronum!” Gard raised his wand.

A silver-white stag materialized beside them.

Fudge finally felt the earlier chill dissipating, and he couldn’t help but breathe a sigh of relief.

They hurriedly passed cell after cell until they reached the location of the earlier explosion.

After a few minutes, they found it.

A spell had blasted apart a wall, and several nearby cells’ doors hung open, their occupants absent.

“Merlin’s beard!” Cornelius Fudge covered his mouth in disbelief.

The worst had come to pass.

Azkaban Prison had witnessed its first successful escape in history.

He suddenly recalled the tabby cat.

Then, his thoughts turned to the Muggle fishing boat in the midst of the storm.

He stuck his head out of the broken wall and surveyed the sea.

Unfortunately, there was no sign of the Muggle fishing boat.

Meanwhile, an odd quartet desperately swam in the frigid waters of the North Sea.

Four peculiar creatures.

A tall stag with two long, pointed antlers, with an eccentric tabby cat perched upon its back.

If Cornelius Fudge were present, he would immediately recognize the piebald cat as the one he had seen on the fence of Azkaban just hours ago.

A pitch-black, splashing black dog was accompanying them, and a tiny mouse sat atop the dog’s head.

A fishing net descended, ensnaring all four extraordinary creatures.

Subsequently, they followed the Muggle fishing boat, swiftly distancing themselves from the wicked island that lay not far away.

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Published On: September 12, 2023

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