Do you ever think about how when Ron’s wand broke 2nd year, just using spell-o-tape wasn’t enough to fix it. It kept backfiring in ways that were really bad, like making himself eat slugs, or kinda just. being defective in general.
Hagrid’s wand was snapped his 3rd year. But he still uses it, disguised as an umbrella. And it works.
Like we know Ollivander didn’t fix it, since he was surprised to hear Hagrid had the pieces. Not to mention since Hagrid was expelled, it would be extremely illegal to fix it. Hogwarts works as a groundskeeper, and lives in a one room wooden hut that he made himself. He’s not going to have the money to ribe someone to fix it, and then there’s also the fact that because of his heritage, even if he could bribe someone to fix it, they probably wouldn’t. And sure, Dumbledore probably knows that Hagrid fixed his wand, there’s a certain level of deniability there. He wouldn’t have actually gotten involved with the wand mending process. Especially when Hagrid was just accused of killing a student.
So that means Hagrid would have put his wand back together himself.
The 3rd year transfiguration examination was to turn a teapot into a tortoise. Only inanimate objects into animals. Part of the reason animagi are so rare is because they’re human to animal transformations. The first time we meet Hagrid, he gives Dudley a tail, and correctly animates the boat he and Harry are on. Silently.
Harry and co. didn’t even attempt to learn silent casting until 6th year. Anything Hagrid learned after 3rd year would have been self taught.
Hagrid is one powerful wizard and holy shit combined with his resistance to magic with his giant heritage forget McGonagall holy shit Hagrid is terrifying
No wonder sixteen-year-old Voldemort was intimidated enough by thirteen-year-old Hagrid to pick him as the one to frame for murder.
Woulda been nice if the media had explored wordless magic more deeply, since the first spells we ever see use it.
Hagrid defeating Voldemort would have been one hell of a plot twist.
So, AU in which Hagrid didn’t get framed for murder and expelled. We’ll say Aragog never happened and Tom settled on a different fall guy. Myrtle dies and Riddle gets away with it, but Rubeus is not a casualty of the plot.
His written coursework was never going to be great, even if he hadn’t been orphaned at age twelve, but his practical casting gets more noticeably excellent, the more the spells they’re learning benefit from having more power behind them.
Dumbledore made a teacher’s pet of him from the beginning, because he wants to see the half-giant kid Dippet almost didn’t let in succeed, so he’s always worked hardest in Transfiguration. Once Albus notices there’s actual potential here, he keeps assigning him different tutors trying to find someone who can get transfiguration theory into his head because once this kid figures out what the hell he’s doing he’s really good. He starts taking all the kid’s detentions and assigning them as tutoring sessions.
Toward the end of fourth year he tries Minnie McGonagall, a prefect who is ironically in detention for cursing a Slytherin prefect during an argument about politics.
Rubeus gets five OWLs and the Transfiguration score is actually pretty high. The next year, he turns out to be a natural at nonverbal casting. His DADA scores climb steadily.
The summer before Rubeus’ seventh year, his Transfiguration Professor goes to Europe and defeats a Dark Lord. When he comes back, everyone is incredibly excited to have the Conqueror of Grindelwald among them and keeps praising him and thanking him and telling him how proud they are and how proud he must be to be such a hero.
Rubeus is the only one who seems to notice that his favorite teacher seems really, really sad. He bakes him an inedible cake. Albus finds himself smiling and meaning it for the first time in at least three months after he nearly breaks a tooth on it.
Where has one of his favorite students been spending the summers since second year, anyway? Do wizards have their own orphanages? Did Hagrid’s father have relatives that put him up?
(It’s 1946, there aren’t a lot of government regulations covering this kind of thing even for Muggles yet, and the situation of ‘homeless orphan who spends nine months a year at boarding school’ is unprecedented in my experience because those usually cost money.)
Rubeus gets three NEWTs: Transfiguration, DADA, and (with flying colors) Care of Magical Creatures. He gets a job with the winged-horse breeders. Offends the young Abraxas Malfoy by being Entirely Too Large and Not Human and In his Stables. Gets fired. He gets a job at the Welsh Green reserve out west. Gets attached to a particular elderly dragon scheduled for slaughter. Gets fired.
Manages a position at the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures–a real grunt position, not at all what you’d expect for someone with such high NEWTs and glowing letters of recommendation from his teachers, even if he has been fired twice, but that’s institutional prejudice for you. Mostly they have him deal with dangerous animals, which is just how he likes it.
Manages to go several years without being fired, mostly because he’s managed to keep his head down and avoid anybody noticing how many animals he was supposed to kill he actually smuggled home to his house. Complains at length to his old teacher and recently appointed Supreme Mugwump about the rampant unfairness toward splendid beasts and nonhuman persons he sees every day on the job, when Albus drops by with cake to have tea and double-check the wards Hagrid’s cast to keep any of his rescues from getting out of the woods around his house.
Is eventually fired, but not for the creature-hoarding because that would probably get him jail time.
Now-Headmaster Dumbledore convinces Professor Kettleburn, who has just lost an arm, that an Adjunct Professor who’s practically indestructible would be just the thing.
By 1970 Rubeus Hagrid is the main CMC Professor and Kettleburn does periodic safety lectures (directed mostly toward Hagrid with the kids learning sort of incidentally; it actually stick with them better that way) and some of the advanced theory topics, and spends the rest of his time doing research in the Forbidden Forest. (Binns is now also a Professor Emeritus and delivers most of his lectures to rooms full of marble busts. He doesn’t seem to have noticed.)
Lily Evans is one of his favorite students. Remus Lupin is teacher’s pet.
Rubeus Hagrid, fully accredited wizard who can shrug off stunners even without any kind of armor, is a battle tank of the Order of the Phoenix. He and Moody take down enough Death Eaters together to have Voldemort wishing he’d killed that ugly half-giant kid when they were in school, instead of the useless Ravenclaw girl.
As a certified Responsible Adult and a dear old friend of Lily Potter-née-Evans, Hagrid ends up being named Harry’s godfather rather than Sirius (who, though dearly beloved, is also young and reckless and probably going to get himself killed before James and Lily at the current rate - the guy who shrugs off stunning spells and can literally crush Death Eaters’ skulls with his bare hands, however, seems like a solid bet for durability). When they ask him to take on the role, Hagrid cries buckets.
But he never actually expects to be called upon, because he never expects that anyone would betray James and Lily.
Dumbledore tries to talk him into sending Harry to stay with his relatives, and Hagrid caves at first, because. Well. Mostly because he’s spent his whole life hearing that he’s clumsy and oafish and worth less than other wizards, and normally he can shrug it off, but raising a whole other person is a very high-stakes sort of situation, and Dumbledore knows how to press on the right self-doubts to achieve what he thinks is the best outcome.
Hagrid promised Lily and James that he’d look out for Harry, though, and as a grown and legal wizard of his own means, no one can really stop him from going where he pleases. And if he pleases to go to Privet Drive, and check in, then those illusion spells he’s learned for fighting Death Eaters are at least going to keep Petunia from shrieking about giants in the neighbourhood. So Hagrid sees the Dursleys and sees how little they love baby Harry, hears how they talk about him as a burden and being from ‘bad stock’ and all their other obvious red flags, and it’s not long before he finds himself sneaking another mistreated and ill-fated little creature back home with him.
Dumbledore argues with him, of course. Hagrid can’t provide blood protection - well, Hogwarts is the next safest place for Harry then, isn’t it? Hagrid can’t shield Harry from the consequences of his fame and reputation - no sir, he can’t do that, that’s true enough. But he knows plenty of places where fame and reputation don’t hardly matter none. He’ll take Harry camping, once he starts getting older. Show him dragons and the deep, wild forests, old caverns and other places where nature and raw magic know how to humble a person in the biggest of ways. Hagrid can’t give him a normal childhood - but what’s normal anyway? The Dursleys? Does Dumbledore think Lily and James would want their son raised in a house where he’s called ‘freak’?
Hagrid’s been called freak, and worse, and he knows that nothing ever feels like ‘normal’ when you’re always being branded as the odd man out.
No sir, Professor Dumbledore, sir, with all due respect - Hagrid’s spent a lot of years looking after living creatures despite the better wisdom of others, and he’s never once had cause to regret it. He won’t do less by Harry.
So Dumbledore has no recourse but to either stoop to measures that really are beyond his moral conscience, or else concede. He chooses to concede, and Hagrid takes a summer job as groundskeeper so he can stay year round at the school, and raise Harry within the wards. Encouraging Harry’s inquisitiveness and intuition, and taking him out to little muggle preschool events where he solicits advice from the parents there and tries to fake being ‘normal’. He never entirely succeeds, of course, but that’s not new, and he discovers movies and more importantly, documentaries, which swiftly make figuring out how to get televisions to work on Hogwarts’ grounds a pet hobby of Hagrid’s.
By the time Harry is eleven and Voldemort is a problem again, the school governors have been fretting over the students at Hogwarts having ‘muggle tekno-ology’ in the dormitories, Harry Potter is a happy and well-adjusted child, and Hagrid’s figured out how to make a working magical tranquilizer gun that he can shoot like some kind of wizard sniper and hide in his umbrella.
Harry discovers the basilisk when he’s nine and exploring the grounds (it gets taken out to a reserve), Quirrell doesn’t make it halfway through his first year before getting a tranq dart in the back of his head, third year goes about the same but nobody bats an eye at Hagrid getting yet another scruffy-looking dog at the end of it, but Fourth Year is the kicker, when Rubeus Hagrid invokes his guardianship rights and substitutes himself for Harry in the Triwizard Tournament. Barty Crouch ends up trying to knock him out and lock him up with the real Moody in order to force Harry to compete in the final event, but Harry’s so worried about Hagrid going missing that he just forfeits. And Hagrid breaks out of the locked chest midway through the maze competition anyway, and they manage to stop the whole thing before anybody can touch the portkey’d trophy.
Voldemort hates Hagrid so effing much.