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Running Time

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Graves paused, then turned to the young man in a silent living room. Credence was sitting by a fireplace, bathing in warm orange light. A Huddling shadow painted on the wall. The auror adjusted his reading-glasses.


"Come again?"


Barebone boy swallowed, forcing himself to speak a little bit louder even though that thick shyness still had not unraveled. "Ilvermorny. Did you go there too?"


An old book on Credence's lap.


"How did you know about... Oh, where did you find that book?"


This time, Credence turned to him, looking a bit wary.


"The shelf." He pointed at Grave's enormous bookshelves.


Graves bit his groan. "I totally forgot about it. I shoved it there decades ago." Glasses taken off. "No, I didn't go to Ilvermorny. I went to Hogwarts.” He added. “My parents hated Ilvermony."


"W--why?" Confusion colored Credence's face immediately.


"To quote my mother, 'If they're going to pretend that they didn't destroy schools and communities to build a replica of Hogwarts with four creatures from Native American origins on top of the gate...'." His mother didn’t finish that sentence but her son could guess that it finished in her head with uncountable rude words.


"There was another school here?"


"Various schools as there were more than hundreds of tribes, still are. We live in a stolen land, Credence. My parents went to Ilvermorny. They'd learned about history from a history class, just like other people, and they believed it. They believed and loved it so much they wanted to know more. Only to find out that they were all lies." Graves took one sip of now cold drink. Contemplation reflected in dark orbs. "With such shallow understanding and proud enthusiasm, my parents...had hurt people. They had angered the Pukwudgie because they thought it would be like Isolt's bedtime story. My parents had also hurt many Natives who try to protect both the Pukwudgie, and them, brutally. The Natives asked for justice, my parents confessed their crime, MACUSA interfered."


Credence gaped. "Your parents had been in wizarding prison?"


"No, MACUSA justified their action, claiming that the Natives were savages and must have attacked them first. Case closed. My parents never dare to go back. They tried acting like everything was back to normal. Sometimes, my father said he should cut off his own hands just to not remember the blood on them. We’re good at that, forgetting, erasing.”


The silence got heavier in the room. Graves sighed, he had told Credence the truth about squib only three days ago, maybe he should save this conversation for later but it was hard. Mr. and Mrs. Graves were so ashamed about this they couldn’t wait until their son got the letter from Ilvermorny. Graves himself didn’t’ hate his mother and father for unloading this on him. He just shared their shame. It was buried deep most of the time. They told him Skin-walkers were real and more powerful than Animagi, so powerful the invaders tried to get rid of it from the WW and history.


"Like every wizarding society, the Natives have their own way with magic. They also don’t need wands, a symbol of invention among witches and wizard from European origin. That was one of reason why they were painted as savages and how our ancestors felt righteous to destroy them." They even helped or had the No-Majs helped them. This part of history was obviously unclear even in his paernts’ co-written book about ‘True History of Magic in North America’ since they were too ashamed to go ask from any Native American people and there was no record in main library of MACUSA nor Ilvermorny.


That book also got his parents jailed when Graves was 14, and in Hogwarts. It made Graves decide to come back here. He joined MACUSA afterwards.


Every place had washed blood, forgotten pain, obnoxious pride, and buried shame.


His parents’ shame was here. Someone needed to own it.


“But, aren’t you all…wizards, Mr. Graves?”


Graves heard the unsaid ‘Not like me’, he shook his head.


“Aren’t we all are?”