Still Waters Run Deep
Still Waters Run Deep
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Pairings: (I loved the HP/SS pairing so the story is about their love. Enjoy!) HP/SS, HP/LM, HR/RW, DM/GW, NM/LM (and many other pairs later).
Summary: Harry’s lost more than just the battle when Voldemort springs a surprise attack on No. 4 Privet Drive. Will the wizarding war end there? Or perhaps the wizarding world will now be forced forever under Voldemort’s brutal regime.
Thank you Suraiyah for beta my story. I hope this is better than before.
Island Of The Mighty (125 A.D.)
The maiden lay peacefully within the coffin where she would rest for eternity. She lay surrounded with strewn lavenders and roses, the tenderness of the petals serving only to enhance the beauty of her face. She was dressed in a pink silk gown, the very same she wore when he first spied upon her.
Mourners wept, as the coffin was gradually lowered beneath the earth where her beauty was to wither away unseen. Even the earth grieved for the loss as it was shrouded with the grey cloak of sorrow. He felt an ache, an emptiness that he did not, could not, understand. Twiddling his pointed fingers, he moved away from his hidden location in the thick willow tree to return home.
‘By the mother of Goddesses, it was never meant to go so far! Who would have known that she was delicate and would pine unto death? The poor creatures are so easily wounded and even those managing to live to old age, their beauty faded and died. It seems great cruelty. Yet it was the same quality that made them more alive than the Faeries. Is that then the reason? The quickness of their lifespan must be what gives them the passion and heart unknown to our kind.‘
His thoughts were interrupted by his mother, Queen Bebo, who materialized before him. He felt her judgment, cold and with regrets, as she observed the burial in the distance.
“I am most displeased.”
“Yes, My Lady. I did not intend – ”
“I am disappointed in you Gancanagh! You cannot be sated with your own kind, who would not face this end, no matter how you mistreated them. You run forever to the mortal realm with your wicked way and no care for these creatures.”
“My Lady -” he protested.
Her fierce gaze silenced him but it started to soften with her eyes moist, almost tear like, when she next spoke,
“On this sorrowful day, I curse you, my son!”
“A curse?” He was surprised as she weaved the intricate spell.
Upon hearing the spell cast he cried out,
“My Lady! I beg you, I am only as I was made.”
“And I do what I must to keep the balance of two worlds, as much as it pains me to see you thus.” She paused to continue her curse,
“My curse on you is loneliness so vast that it would make stones weep. You will remain in this realm until you repent and true love sets you free.”
His precious world, ‘Faylinn’, that shimmered around him suddenly blended into the mortal world, dissolving and then finally disappearing, leaving only the Queen’s final words echoing through the emptiness of the space around him.
‘Silent… his hope for his mother to waver her decision finally gone.’
“Mother! Might I have my flute at least?” he croaked the words out finally. He had not called her that for many centuries but in desperation he let it slip.
“Very Well. Farewell my son!”
He was alone.
He wandered off waiting for the curse to begin to impose itself on him. He suddenly felt waves of pain surging through his body, and rushed to the nearest pond he could see the full implication of the deformity curse that affected him. For a vainly creature such as the Faeries, it meant the end of the world.
If you have read this far please review.
The prologue will make little sense until later chapters, and the reason that the whole curse is not mentioned above is because it would ruin the story. Thank you for reading it. It’s my first Harry Potter fanfiction. I’ll apologize for any grammar.
ISLAND OF THE MIGHTY is the title with which Britain was known in the olden days when many powerful wizards and druids were found.
GARCONER/ GANCANAGH, “meaning Love Talker“, is an Irish Elf who loves to seduce mortals. He has bright black eyes (*hint* who do you think this reminds you of?). Anyone who yields to his sweet words and kisses is lost. The mortal will pine away and die after he inevitably leaves.
FAYLINN is a fairy realm in Irish folklore, ruled by King Iubdan and Queen Bebo.
Chapter 2: Chapter 1:First Defeat
Still Waters Run Deep
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Pairings: (I loved the HP/SS pairing so this story is about their love. Enjoy!) HP/SS, HP/LM, HR/RW, DM/GW, NM/LM (and many others pairs later).
Summary: Harry’s lost more than just the battle when Voldemort springs a surprise attack on No. 4 Privet Drive. Will the wizarding war end there? Or perhaps the wizarding world will now be forever under Voldemort’s brutal regime?
Thank you Suraiyah for beta my story.
Chapter 1: First Defeat
Present (July 23 1996 5.15 a.m.)
Yet another sleepless night because he was afraid to close his eyes. The first ray of light touched the corner of his room. Hedwig hooted in her cage, wanting to be released,
“You know I can’t girl, please be quiet or they’ll wake up.”
As if understanding her young master, Hedwig stopped, but flapped her wings to indicate her irritation. For the past five summer holidays when he was ‘home’ at the Dursleys, she had been his only means of comfort, the only reminder he had of whom he was, a wizard.
All his belongings were now locked up in the small cupboard downstairs, where his Uncle believed they belonged, and if he could, Harry would have been there as he used to be. As always, Harry had managed to hide his wand and other important items under the wooden floorboard in his room. However he could not take them out whenever he wanted to do so, but had to wait until his ‘family’ were all asleep.
There were moments when he wished to simply hold his personal treasures to comfort him, like now, especially this summer after what he had been through. When he touched them, it was almost as good as if he had someone to hug him and tell him that everything was all right. His eyes were nearly covered with tears. He longed to cry for his parents, Sirius, Cedric and finally for himself.
He shook his head to clear the piteous thoughts; he could not cry. To cry was to show weakness and that was how they all died – because he was not strong enough to protect those precious to him.
It was all his fault; they all had died because of him, even when he was a baby. He had gone though many emotions after watching his godfather plummet through the veil. So many emotions, either coming at once or jumbling through his heart. His heart was like tightening strings that twisted into several knots and could not be untangled even if he tried.
Anger, denial, sorrow, blaming Snape, but finally acceptance that it was his fault was the most painful realisation. He wanted to howl, scream, but even that he could not; he could not mourn for Sirius dead, not here in this house. Defeated he shrugged his thin shoulders, lowered his head to whimper his pain. It was a pitiful scene and could touch anyone if there were there to watch, may be even melting the Dursleys’ hard hearts.
In anguish he failed to hear the Dursleys wake up, at least until Uncle Vernon’s voice thundered through the thick door,
“Boy, wake up now! Get your lazy butt downstairs. You should have made our breakfast two minutes ago.”
Harry scrambled off his bed, changed into his clothes within seconds and opened the door to find his uncle standing there, face flushed with rage. He dodged his uncle’s swinging fist and fled down the stairs as if he were on a broomstick descending at a fast speed.
That was close; his uncle had rarely hit him, but then he managed to complete all his chores and stay out of their way. He had learned years ago, that it was one of the unspoken rules, even though sometimes Harry’s temper got the better with him and landed him in trouble.
It was like any weekday morning, breakfast cooked for the Dursleys, cleaning the dishes while Uncle Vernon got ready for work and his Aunt Petunia sat at the table to make plans for her tea party with her Sewing Club later in the afternoon, as Dudley hogged the T.V. as usual.
Harry was so engrossed in his task that he did not hear the front door open until Uncle Vernon screamed,
“Get out you freaks!”
” I…I said to get out.” Uncle Vernon’s voice lowered, sounding almost shaking with fear and that caught Harry’s attention, but then he was shocked to hear that insane laughter that came next.
Harry’s hand began shaking and he dropped the dishes immediately. It sent a loud crash on the floor, but he could not be bothered to worry about such a trivial thing when life or dead was his choice in the next second.
Harry had no option but to run out to the hall and found it swarming with Death Eaters, with Voldemort standing there watching Uncle Vernon under the Cruciatus Curse, twitching in pain while Aunt Petunia tried to pull her husband into her arms. Dudley simply stood in the corner of the entrance to the living room, attempting to hide like the coward he was.
“Stop it! It’s me that you want Voldemort.” Harry cried out, disrupting the pleasure of the Death Eaters.
“Ah, Harry! So glad that you finally decided to join us.” His voice mockingly at the boy and turned to his servants and commanded them to continue to torture the rest of the family.
“Enjoy yourself!” he finished with amusement as he strode toward Harry,
“I think we should finish where we left off, boy.”
Voldemort’s ruby eyes did not blink once since Harry showed himself, if looks could kill then the boy would have died many times over. Harry immediately backed off, realising that his wand was still upstairs under the loose wooden floorboard. He ran off, dodging curses that were pitched at him from Voldemort and his companion. Harry could recognise Lucius Malfoy anywhere, even under those hoods. However, his mind did not register the fact of what Malfoy was doing here instead of being at Azkaban.
Harry felt the man catching up, and as if he knew Harry wanted to head upstairs, Malfoy tried to block the path. Fortunately for Harry, with the athletic skill he learned from Quidditch, he swung his lithe body up onto the stairs holding the bar to get the balance and strength to lift off the ground, leaving Malfoy in shock at having been outmanoeuvred by a mere kid.
Harry was able to take his wand out of his hiding place and ready himself to battle when both Voldemort and Malfoy hurtled into his room.
‘Shit! The room is too small and he hated to be cornered like an animal. He knew if he wanted any chance to get the Dursleys out he would have to get out of here and into the hall.‘
The first spell coming to his mind was uttered as he pointed his wand towards Malfoy who was nearer to him,
Malfoy evaded his curse by erecting a quick shielding charm
Harry was barely able to dash sideways from being hit by Voldemort’s curse.
‘The only way to get out was a tactic that he had learned getting away from Dudley is the element of surprise on his opponent.‘
Harry ran towards them so fast that his body could carry him and slipped himself down on the ground and used the momentum of friction to get out of the door while both his enemies stood there, only coming to realise that Harry had just slid between them to get away when he had already left.
Harry fled down the stairs but stopped abruptly at the horrifying scene before his eyes. The Dursleys lay on the once pristine floor, swathed in blood, and there were no doubt that they had died in the most hideous way. Their eyes still remained open, displaying unbearable pain and even in death they could not be closed.
‘So much blood, why can’t I see anything but blood?‘
He stared down at his own hands and only saw blood there too. Harry screamed of his agony with cries that echoed though the square house.
He did not notice a curse flying towards him from behind. He barely registered what happened except his body was being cruelly tortured after that. His brain shut down because of the intense physical pain to which his body was stimulated, while his heart was screaming for the release of emotional traumas.
In the end his body was numb, and then it was silent. He scarcely breathed.
He heard a familiar voice in the distance trying to wake him up,
“Potter, Harry…can you hear me?”
The voice was soft and sensual; it seduced him to open his eyes although he wished otherwise, wanting to go back to sleep. His eyes gazed upon Snape, who was kneeling beside him looking very concerned. Harry’s eyes flickered to his surroundings, still dazed as he saw fires burning everywhere, gulping everything in their path. The first thought that came to him was that he must be in Hell.
‘How fitting, that Snape is here with me. I’m relieved actually that I have company and I’d want none other if I had a choice.’ Harry was amused at this thought.
“Harry, snap out of it! Do you hear me? Don’t you dare die on me!”
Harry heard this, opened his eyes again and found that Snape held a potion near his lips. Without asking what it was, he drank its contents, trusting Snape to take care of him.
“You better stay alive Potter. I’ll take you back to Hogwarts…” Those were the last words he heard as he slipped off again into unconsciousness.
“Harry, Harry wake up!”
“Severus, please leave Harry to Madam Pomfrey’s care.” Harry wanted to open his eyes to say that he was fine now that they were back at Hogwarts, but he was too exhausted and once again drifted off to sleep.
“What happened Severus?” Albus Dumbledore’s eyes were no longer holding its customary twinkles under his half-moon glass, his face drawn with shock at the state of Harry’s condition.
Severus tightened his palms to get a grip on reality as he told Albus of the last few torturous hours that had passed.
Severus arrived at the Riddle Manor, the usual place where the Dark Lord summoned his Death Eaters. Severus was told that they were going to have a surprise attack on Muggles for the entertainment today. Although feeling nauseous at the aspect of seeing and participating in Muggle tortures, he managed to hide it well under a mask as he always had.
The Dark Lord had given them each a portkey, and upon arriving at their destination he felt strange, as if he should know this place. His speculation was answered by the Dark Lord,
“I’m going to finish Potter off, once and for all.” Voldemort declared out loud as he sent off the Dark Mark into the sky.
With that Lord Voldemort led his Death Eaters towards the house before them. Severus’ brain stopped functions at that moment, he wanted to apparate out of there to tell Albus, but was stopped in time by Lucius’ hands, which were tugging at his sleeve. He had no choice but to go ahead and believe that Potter’s luck would get the boy out of this situation.
He did not hear the incantation the Dark Lord gave, but the powerful wards and charms established by Albus had disappeared. The old magic, the blood magic, unbroken by all magical laws was destroyed with a single incantation. He was not sure what shocked him more, the surprise attack plan or the Dark Lord being able to break the barriers.
When he got inside the house they had already started to torture the Muggle man, presumably Harry’s uncle. The obese man wiggled in pain under the Cruciatus Curses of Crabbe and Goyle.
Severus’ eyes searched for the boy, hoping by some miracle that Potter was not there. His heart literally stopped when the brat appeared at the entrance.
‘Bravery like a true Gryffindork.’ He sneered. ‘He could not help being a prejudiced Slytherin; it was a purely rivalry reflected comment.’
Severus had to gulp his laughter at the boy’s appearance. Potter had not changed much since he last saw him. However, the boy was wearing a kitchen apron with the words ‘Perfect Housewife’ printed across its font and with his messy hair, it somehow did not fit well. He looked defiantly at them as he cried out,
“Stop it! It’s me that you want Voldemort.”
‘I should join Voldemort in throttling the boy. Either that or kiss him. Where’d that thought come from?’
Severus was abruptly brought back to reality when Potter ran up the stairs. He desperately wanted to follow them but was held back by the other Death Eaters. He was too concerned about Potter’s safety to observe the Dursleys’ torture until it was over and their bodies quite unrecognisable. His stomach churned at the sight, he swallowed his vomit. It tasted gross but better than attracting the attention to him.
He immediately felt Potter in the hall when he was back again. Severus wished he could hide Potter from the sight of the annihilation of his family. Even though the boy had gone through much for his age, it was not anywhere near as horrific as this.
Potter’s reaction was like that expected of any human being. His agonies echoed through the rooms, his eyes lost its sanity when Severus saw a Blasting Curse from Voldemort’s wand hit its target and then came Lucius’ Stupefy Spell as Harry fell down unconscious upon the floor.
* End Flashback *
Severus stopped at this point in the tale, as his pale face turned even whiter. It gave him the look of a corpse as he remembering of what occured next. His throat has turned dry and he was unable to go on. He slipped into his own thoughts.
‘It was not that he had not viewed such tortures before, but somehow watching and participating in hurting Potter caused severe pain to him. Not even when he, himself suffered had made him feel this way.’
“Severus, I need to know what happened to Harry. If you wish to be brief about it then I understand.” Albus Dumbledore adjusted his half moon glass waiting patiently,
“No, we used the Cruciatus Curse on him. I believe that it was long enough for anyone to be driven insane. Har…Potter will be no doubt deposited in St Mungo’s Hospital like the Longbottoms, if he survives, of course.”
“They also cursed him with Acusus Pungere after utilizing him as a punching bag. As you can perceive from when Harry arrived, he had several fractured bones and internal injures that caused blood to spurt from his mouth.”
“After that (Rodolphus) Lestrange discovered the knife in the kitchen and stabbed him sixteen times, the cuts were not deep enough to kill him immediately but allowed Potter to endure punishment. Lestrange said something about ‘How fitting an end for Potter.’… By the time we finished Harry was unconscious and Voldemort had lost interest so he cast Incendio on the residence.”
“I went back to retrieve Potter and brought him back here as soon as I could.” Severus finished off lamely as his voice filled with guilt.
He did not feel better but worse at the memories. He wondered how he could live with himself after this. There was no redemption for one such as he. He could have done something to prevent it.
‘Yeah, What?’ his Slytherin side inserted.
The silence in Albus’ room intensified after Severus trailed off his story. Suddenly the fireplace burst alight and Madam Pomfrey’s head popped out as she cried,
“Albus come quickly!” Then she disappeared before they could ask her what was wrong. Albus managed to make Severus remain behind in his office.
Half An Hour Later
“I’m sorry Severus, but Harry did not make it.” Albus’ head was bowed in defeat.
A hoarse cry emanated from Severus as he rushed into the hospital wing – Harry Potter, the bane of his existence, lay there lifeless on the bed, still covered with wounds over his body. For the first time in his life Severus Snape cried, truly cried.
Madam Pomfrey sniffed and her eyes became blinded with tears as she covered Harry’s face with a white sheet of fabric. She finally turned to the nearest body for comfort and did not comprehend that it was Snape who was holding her.
From the doorway, Albus Dumbledore whispered to the empty air,
“I’m so sorry, Severus.” He paused and almost mouthing the word
* Acusus Pungere* – (I hope it means needle punctures, since my Latin is non-existent) It is a curse that forces its target to feel thousands of needles punctures on their body. It’s not big enough to bleed or show injuries but causes extreme body pain.
Chapter 3: Chapter 2: While You’re Sleeping
Still Waters Run Deep
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Pairings: (I loved the HP/SS pairing so this story is about their love. Enjoy!) HP/SS, HP/LM, HR/RW, DM/GW, NM/LM (and many others pairs later).
Summary: Harry’s lost more than just the battle when Voldemort springs a surprise attack on No. 4 Privet Drive. Will the wizarding war end there? Or perhaps the wizarding world will now be forever under Voldemort’s brutal regime?
Thank you Suraiyah for beta my story.
Chapter 2: While You’re Sleeping
December 25 1996, 23:15 p.m.
An old wrinkled hand swept the ruffled raven locks off the sleeping boy’s face gently. Harry had been asleep for nearly five months and he had only been able to visit the boy eight times during those months. Harry’s condition had been stable for the last few weeks and he was now out of danger zone.
‘I’m so tired but there is still much to be done. Yes! There was still is a chance to win. Thus plans must be made and decisions need to be carried out.’
He sat back on the chair next to small bed and stared at the sleeping form and sighed.
“Did I make the right choice, Harry?”
‘How often have I asked myself that?’
He chuckled softly and continued talking to the boy as if he could hear him,
“Do you know that the wizarding world still mourns you? Your friends and professors, they have no idea that you’re in coma. They miss you very much my boy. Please awaken soon Harry.”
Albus Dumbledore stopped his speech and removed his glasses. He looked much older than he had a few months ago. At last his age was getting to him.
‘I cannot tell you what is going on at the moment. There is a chance that you are able to hear me while you’re sleeping and you need your rest. We’re losing the war, child. As I’ve feared, Voldemort found a secret script of ancient spells that ensures him success in the war. Even Severus could not attain the information.’
He shook his head on his thoughts of Severus, who was much like a son to him.
‘Severus, I never knew how much he cared for you child. It saddens me to see him like this. Haunted by your memories, no matter what I said he would not listen to me. So like you, he is. I had made a mistake with young Severus, but I’ll not again with you. Yes, I’ll even sacrifice the wizarding world for your happiness Harry. Rest child, I’ll protect you.’
Hogwarts, April 5 1997
“I order you one last time Severus, get out of here now.” Albus’ voice dangerously raises, not many have seen this side of him and would have quivered in fear at the old man, but not the taciturn Potion Master.
“No! I’ll not flee like a coward. If this is the end, so be it.” Severus defied his Headmaster’s orders.
“Are you sure you are a Slytherin, my boy?” Albus mocked ruthlessly.
“It is my choice to end my life as I wish, Headmaster.” Severus answered firmly.
Severus was too busy arguing with Albus to notice Tonks’ wand pointing at him, until he heard a voice from behind,
“Thank you, Tonks. Take him with you.” Albus responded tiredly at the frozen form of Severus.
“Are you sure Headmaster? I want to stay here too sir.”
“No! You know your orders. Hogwarts will fall tonight and I want everyone to retreat.” The Headmaster waved his hand to indicate that she was dismissed.
The school was eerily silent, only a few selected old members of Order of Phoenix were left behind. They were sitting in the Staff Room, waiting for what they believed would be their final battle. Albus straightened up at the doorway,
‘No matter what was the outcome is, I’m their leader. They need my strength.’
He walked into the room confidently and seated himself at the head of the table.
It was not long before they heard a loud bang. Albus found that the school’s famed wards were lowered for the first time since that historic day that Hogwarts had been created by the four founders. Minerva held out her hand and patted his shoulder to comfort him, knowing how much Hogwarts has meant to him.
They all walked out to face their mortal enemies; each enshrouded in their own thoughts. They all had lived their lives to the fullest, and none would regret if tonight were to be their last.
Voldemort as usual made his spectacular entrance with his Death Eaters. He knew he would win tonight, but he wondered at what cost. After his victory over Potter, Voldemort became saner because his obsession in killing Potter had been completed and he gradually became his old self. His determination for the wizarding world’s domination was once again his motivation.
“Ah Dumbledore, it has been a while, has it not?” He spoke as if they were discussing the day’s weather.
“Stop this insane war, Tom. Do you believe that the wizarding world bows down to a mad man’s schemes?” Dumbledore’s eyes locked on to Voldemort, showing full pity for the man before him.
For the first few minutes, Voldemort’s lava red eyes boiled and he would have liked nothing better than to eat the man alive, but suddenly he laughed. Even his Death Eaters were shocked at the sound and even more so at his reply full of pride,
“You’re right Dumbledore, but no matter what, I’ll achieve my vision. You’ll be there to see it, mark my words.”
“Attack!” Voldemort ordered his Death Eaters and the battle began.
Hexes and curses flew everywhere, as screams of pains echoed through the Great Hall usually filled with the chatter and laughter of students. The walls split and damage was everywhere, but could not compare to the injuries of the witches and wizards within. Hogwarts became the famous battlefield later recorded in History.
Finally, there was silence, as the Order of Phoenix was out numbered by the Death Eaters. They had no chance to win in the first place. Albus Dumbledore lay injured at the side of Minerva McGonagall, who bore several wounds herself. Albus was only grateful that the two most beloved by him were far away from here and that they were safe and sound.
“Round them up and get them a mediwizard to take care of their injuries.” Voldemort ordered.
He walked up to his nemesis and smirked,
“You’ll live to see I, Lord Voldemort, rule the wizarding world.”
He laughed his evil laughter that was filled with malice and quickly swept out the Great Hall as if he could not wait for what happened next.
‘Life cannot get any better than this.’
Boudicca (Iceni village), January 26 1998
Severus’ hands gripped onto the mantle of the fireplace as tried to be calm. The heat of the hearth had finally warmth him up of the winter day. He was even thinner than the last time they had last met at Hogwarts. Severus’ eyes were still haunted and now added with bitterness as he gazed at the ex-Headmaster who sat not far away from the fireplace.
He did not see the cosy room but attentively studied the old man’s face. Albus Dumbledore looked carefree; surprisingly his twinkling eyes were brighter then before and truly at peace. This made Severus angrier, wishing he could take whatever caused the happiness away from Albus.
‘The man has no right to feel this way. Many have died for the cause and all fell for nothing. The Order of Phoenix is nothing more than a band of outlaws as it was pronounced two weeks ago.’
He recomposed himself in time and spoke calmly,
“You know why I’m here. If not, I shall get straight to the point. I resign from spying for you Albus. It is better I stop here before I say anything we both regret.”
“Severus…” Albus began his speech but was stopped by the Potion Master,
He had a different speech composed for Albus but it no longer mattered. The man no longer deserved his loyalty. He had new plans for his life, a life that he can mourn peacefully.
“Goodbye, Professor Dumbledore.” He swept out the room quickly, billowing his robes as usual.
Albus Dumbledore, closed his eyes and sighed.
‘It may be for the best, dear boy.’
Albus heard a stumbling sound coming from the stairways and a voice rang clearly like the sound of a bell,
Albus could not help but smile and it spread even wider when a figure stood at the doorway to the living room smiling brightly at him,
“Did you have a guest, Grandpa?”
“Yes but he left. Come here Harriet.”
London, April 2 1998
“My Lord, Master Snape wishes to speak to you.” The man knelt and bowed his head, waiting for Lord Voldemort to reply.
“Send him in.” Voldemort smiled, only a few of his servants he bestowed good thoughts upon these days and Severus Snape was one of them.
Severus Snape regally walked across the great marble hall, leaving many Death Eaters standing along it with eyes wide with jealousy. Finally arriving at Voldemort’s throne, he knelt upon one knee before the Dark Lord, who he hated, but he knew such thoughts should be hidden away forever in the corner of his mind.
“My lord, thank you for seeing me at such a short notice, but I wish to speak to you on a matter of import and hope that you’ll grant my request.”
“I’ve an appointment at the moment. We’ll discuss it on the way Severus.”
Voldemort left the room followed by Severus and the rest the servants trailing behind them.
“Well Severus, did you manage to control the French Ministry of Magic?” he voiced, grimacing as he remembered that it has caused him a lot of trouble during the past months.
“Yes, my Lord. However, that was what I desired to discuss with you, I wish to resign from the position.”
Voldemort failed his step and turned to look at Severus surprisingly upon hearing the request.
‘My loyal Death Eaters have annoyed me constantly with requests for higher positions, while Severus who has beem given the seat of the Head of France Ministery of Magic, the second most wanted position, wishes to resign? Unheard off! Especially for one a Slytherin by nature.’
“You know I can’t give you the British Ministry, it is under Lucius’s control.” Voldemort laughed finally thinking that is the reason.
“I’ve no wish to fill Lucius’s shoes my Lord, but now that your vision of a new world has materialized and any resistance against you is futile, you no longer have need for me that others can’t fulfill. My only wish is to return to my research for Potions. Please grant my request, it is all I have asked of you, my Lord.”
“True, you’ve not asked me of anything before and I know your great love for Potions. So be it, Severus. However, I’ll summon you when I need you Severus. You’re after all, besides Lucius, my most trusted servant.”
He almost sniggered at that comment.
They walked in silence to the execution gallows where Severus came to realized where he was,
‘Oh, joy. I should have chosen to come another time instead.’
They walked to the sitting stand to sit down; Lucius was awaiting them with the other Inner Circle Death Eaters. They then noticed an old woman, who was held onto the stage,
“Final chance for your life. Pronounce your loyalty to Lord Voldemort.” The executioner exclaimed, his comment ringing through the empty yard before them.
“No. Never!” She cried out bravely.
Severus recognised the woman in question, foolish Gryffindor, just like Neville Longbottom, her grandson. His eyes drifted on to another prisoner of war, eyes widening as he spotted Hermione Granger.
‘What is that girl doing here? Damn! I must save the girl for if not for Harry, then at least in his memory.’
“Isn’t that Granger?” he asked Draco Malfoy, who looked a bit pale.
“The girl is good at Potions.” He remarked and looked thoughtful as if remembering old days.
He knew he had attained Voldemort’s attention. His eyes flickered to the Dark Lord,
“My Lord, it just came into my attention that I require an assistant for my research. If I may, I want the girl to aid me. Mudblood though she is, she was still the best student I had.”
Severus’ heart beat faster, hoping his Lord bought his words and gave into his request.
“I don’t know. Surely there is one among the Death Eaters suitable for such a position.”
“I’m afraid they’re mostly incompetent in Potions, my Lord.” Made a weeping statement.
Voldemort laughed at his answer,
“For all these years you have followed me and yet you’ve not changed one bit. It is after all a small request. Incompetence indeed!”
‘For that moment he could get a glimpse of the old Voldemort, as the Dark Lord that he had once respected when he first joined the Death Eaters – someone who understood scholars and what the true vision of Slytherin should be, until one day his power hunger had clouded his judgment and his hates ate what remained of his soul.’
“Take the girl off the gallows and let her be told her of her good fortune.” He gave the order to one of lackeys standing nearby.
After a great deal of groveling and thanks to the Dark Lord, Severus left to await his horseless carriage where Granger was waiting for her new master. She opened her mouth agape at the sight of him,
“Sir, Professor Snape. What are you doing here?”
His thin lips spread into a smile as the carriage took off.
BOUDICCA Derived from British boud meaning “victory”. This was the name of a 1st-century queen of the Iceni who led the Britons in revolt against the Romans.
The name that I have given to the little wizard’s village where Dumbledore’s estate is located is called Iceni, and the town/region called Boudicca. Although it is not important to the story but I wanted to believe that the people of Iceni after lost to Roman have fled to north of England and settled somewhere in the lowlands of Scotland. And this group people are druids/wizards of Wales of that turmoil period.
Finally, thank you to all who have reviewed my story.
Chapter 4: Chapter 3: Adrasteia Harriet Velius
Still Waters Run Deep By Mnemea
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Pairings: (I loved the HP/SS pairing so this story is about their love. Enjoy!) HP/SS, HP/LM, HR/RW, DM/GW, NM/LM (and many others pairs later).
Summary: Harry’s lost more than just the battle when Voldemort springs a surprise attack on No. 4 Privet Drive. Will the wizarding war end there? Or perhaps the wizarding world will now be forever under Voldemort’s brutal regime?
Thank you Suraiyah for beta my story.
Chapter 3: Adrasteia Harriet Velius
Boudicca (Iceni village), May 30th 1999
“Nym, please help me.” Harriet begged, both her hands on the vine as she tried frantically to pull herself up. Yet for some reason, the plants kept twisting and she had been unable to get over the wall for the last fifteen minutes, despite all the pulling and gripping she had done.
‘Just brilliant! Grandpa has spelled the vine to keep me inside the house. And I can’t even break the darn spell because it’s tuned in to my magic signature, so unless someone else breaks it, I won’t be able to get out.’
“I can’t Harriet. I’m sorry, but I’ve promised Albus to keep you within these walls, and he’s right, no more wandering off to town.” Tonks explained patiently to the very flushed, angry and hanging midair Harriet.
“Harriet…Harriet where are you?” Albus’ voice rang from the house, disrupting her pleading.
“Damn!” Harriet jumped down, landing on the ground quite gracelessly. She dusted off her clothes in time to see Albus being led from the house and into the garden by Ginny. His sapphire eyes twinkled at the sight of her; for there was no doubt what Harriet had been doing before his arrival.
‘It must run in the blood. Harry is even worse now than before his memories were modified! So much like his father that it scares me. This new life is perfect for him, no more pain from the memories of the now forgotten past.’
Albus had no doubt that the choice he had made was the correct one for Harry, even though it was viewed as selfish by many other people.
“Harriet, I need to collect some plants for healing potions in the Evergreen Forest. Why don’t you come with me? It has been a while since we were last out together.” Albus’ eyes gazed over her, knowing she would be up to no good if she were left home unsupervised.
“Grandpa, I’m really busy this morning. May be next time, I still haven’t completed the Master Defence of Dark Arts book.” She wailed.
“Albus, is the potion for Mrs. Heimich? She didn’t look good these few days.” Ginny asked, her voice so softly spoken that they almost did not hear.
“Yes Ginny, she is a good neighbour and we must do our best to help her when she is in need.” Albus nodded and smiled at the red haired girl.
Ginny has grown timid and into a very gentle soul, a young woman unrecognisable from the Gryffindor she used to be. The war had affected her greatly, changing her into a much more cautious and weary person. After all, her family were on the run from Voldemort’s Aurors.
Albus ignored Harriet’s last comment and motioned her to follow him.
“Hurry child, we don’t have all day.” His voice revealed impatience.
Harriet rolled her eyes, threw her arms up in defeat and ran to catch up with the old man, leaving Tonks and Ginny giggling behind them.
Two Hours Later
‘Why Grandpa? Why me? Why does it have to be today?’
Harriet’s thoughts keep coming back to these questions over and over again, so much so that she began to have a headache. She was trekking across the hillside in an attempt to find the Holy Thistle, the final herb required for the healing potion, as they had collected all other necessary plant ingredients.
While Albus was up ahead searching near the area around the willow trees, where he believed that he had seen some growing on their last visit, Harriet grumbled, irritated at the situation, as her eyes slid over a small plant growth on the rocky side in front of her path, surprisingly finding it to be the Holy Thistle.
“Grandpa, it’s here!” overcome by her luck she finally called out.
After they had collected the herbs and carefully stored them correctly in a manner that would not affect their usefulness, Albus decided that they should rest a bit before going home and headed over to a shaded area. He then pulled out his wand casting a Protean Charm on a nearby rock to transfigure it into a wizard’s chess set before them. Harriet’s eyes widened, knowing that now they would not be returning at least for another three hours.
“Let us have a game here.” He announced and Harriet only groaned at this prospect of the situation.
‘You mean a few games don’t you, Grandpa? I know you too well, manipulative old man.’
‘Bugger, one game over already and now our second one. Grandpa will not let me win easily this time; I really need to get to town now though. Neville and his team are in trouble if I’m not there.’
Harriet formed a plan in her mind and looked up at her Grandpa, waiting for his next move.
“Hmph Grandpa, you must be thirsty now. I’ll go to get some water from the back of the hill side and you’ll have some time to think of your next move.”
While Harriet was praying desperately that her ploy would work, Albus merely nodded, still keeping his eyes on the game board without once looking up. If he did, he would not have easily agreed, for triumphant looks clearly appeared in Harriet’s strange set of eyes. On their first impression of her, people are captivated by her unusual eyes. The left eye was a brilliant emerald, shinier then the very gemstone itself, while the right eye was the midnight blue of a clear night sky. The distinctive combination usually had a startling affect on the beholders.
She practically jumped and sprinted down the hill, praying she was on time. She stopped, unbelievable at her luck when she saw a Pegasus drinking water at the side of the riverbank. Its beautiful snowy wings were flapping, the movement showing its pure enjoyment as it quenched its thirst. She crept up to the animal, moving slowly until only an arms length away.
Harriet then noticed a rein upon the winged horse,
‘So you have an owner, but still I do need you to get to town fast.’
“Good boy, you’re a beautiful Pegasus aren’t you? Where is your owner? My friends call me Harriet. I know you understand me boy, please could you take me to town? It’s a matter of life and death.” She exaggerated the situation.
The Pegasus moved slowly toward her, nipping her fingers and snorting and then nodded its head in agreement to her suggestion. Gleeing with joy, she leaped upon the winged steed and flew away. Or at least she attempted to do so.
They had only floated half way up the tree when a figure strode out of the shrub nearby, his eyes widening at them before he shrieked,
“Thief, return my horse at once!”
The command of the man was that of one used to being obeyed, and if it were another time Harriet would have immediately come back on the ground and apologized humbly to the offensive man, but today was different.
“Sorry Mister, but I need the Pegasus to get to Boudicca town. I’ll leave it outside of Town Hall for you.”
Harriet She only managed to yell thank you after a few meters away when she remembered her manners. The owner of the Pegasus, coming to his senses, threw off curses, but the winged horse had already travelled out of his firing range.
Severus swore crossly as his Pegasus flew off into the distance. He did not want to be in this region, but one of rare herbs he required was grown in this place. He had avoided civilization for nearly a year but it appeared that if he wanted to get his horse back he would have to go to Boudicca where he might see Albus. His thoughts returned to the thief and his face turned red. Severus was well known for his petty revenge even through he was considered a ‘good man’.
“I’ll get you for this, stupid girl.” He growled and forgot all about Albus.
‘Just wait until I get my hands on you.’
Boudicca Town Hall Stadium
‘Where is she?’
Neville twisted his hands together, his face covered with sweat, and his teammates in no better condition. They had only been barely able to pass the preliminary contest of the first round, coming last and humiliating themselves in the process.
Suddenly, a Pegasus hastily landed on the ground before them, and a slight, tall but slim boyish figure jumped down.
“Harriet, you’re here!”
Neville squeaked out, giving the girl a bone-crushing hug, not caring how she arrived, as long as she was joining them.
“What is the meaning of this? A latecomer.”
“Who is she?”
“How dare she interrupt our game!”
“She is on our team.” Neville replied, volunteering the information to calm down the audience.
Voices overlapped each other commenting on the presence of Harriet’s abrupt arrival. Each was an unwelcome remark on how the latecomer was disrupting the game.
“She is not allowed to join.” Voices from the other teams called out in resentment.
“The Griffin team will lose points if the girl does not get off the stadium this instant.” One of the examiners responded to the demand of the speculators.
“Stop!” Harriet turned to the examiners confidently to continue,
” There is no written rule on Boudicca’s Champion contest saying anything about a latecomer not being allowed to participate. I demand that I should be fairly treated and allowed to join my brother’s team.” Harriet voice rang clear the stadium in defence of her case to the audience.
The examiners and other members of the Board Committee quickly skimmed over the pages of rules listing and true to Harriet’s words, they found no rules against her involvement. They finally grunted and agreed for her to join her team.
“Let the Second Round begin.”
A small man announced and at once the stadium was quiet as the tension of anticipation arose.
“Each team to their appointed area.”
“Thank you, I didn’t think I’d last this round Harriet.” Andrew clapped her hand and moved off the stadium.
“Thank you for holding the fort down while I was getting here.” She yelled back
“Are you ready?” she turned her to her team.
Neville’s friends, Sebastian and Eugene, could hold their own, but Neville, she sighed, undoubtedly he would get in trouble by his lack of decisiveness.
“Watch his back.” She whispered while Neville was busy checking out the other teams. They nodded in agreement and held their wands out to get ready.
‘There are four stones held on the stage at the middle of the stadium, so only four teams will be able to get there to go into the final round. This test has nothing to do with intellect, but sheer determination and having the resources or power to get to the stone first. This means war.’
She dodged hexes around her and twisted around the other teams to get away from physical attacks. In the process she lost her team’s sight and moved into unknown territory.
‘It’s not surprising to see that the maze moving around to get them off the path to the stones.’ She smiled at the challenging test the examiner had invented.
While the others tried to get rid of their opponents and lose the track getting to the stone, she knew better than to stand around and curse the other teams. The whole point was to attain the stone and anything else came second.
She kept the on the path, using a tracking spell and having her wand pointing in the right direction to determine the way to get there. Moving fast enough to get out of the changing paths that led away from the centre of the stadium, she was able to leave the others behind and reach her goal, but it seemed someone was getting there the same time as her.
Harriet was wary of the stranger, she could sense danger but wondered why. They both were the first to get there, so it meant that they could each claim the stones that ensured them access to the final round. It was not as if there were only one stone left on the stage and they needed to fight for it.
Fortunately her instincts were correct, and she was able to erect a shield before a curse hit her. They moved around each other like predators eyeing their prey, seeking for the other’s weakness and readying to attack if they were able to see any. Harriet’s eyes narrowed, looking at the young man before her. He was not bad looking and in fact could have been seen as handsome, but some how he left her cold.
“You’re good, to manage to duck my curse, but then you did arrive at the same time so it was expected. No offence to you, but I need to get rid of you now before next round when you will certainly cause problems for me.” He spoke, his voice filled with malice.
‘You tried to rile me up, but I’ll get rid of you. Two can play this game.’ Harriet ignored him.
He looked annoyed and put off by Harriet’s indifferent attitude to his threat. His face masked into a smile, but Harriet knew that it was not so. The knowledge embedding in her for some reason even through she could not understand why it was so.
“You’re a worthy foe, what’s your name? Mine is Theodore Nott.” He broke the silence between them trying to take her off guard.
Harriet did not bother to answer, only glancing at him insolently as if he were beneath her notice. Theodore Nott’s face darkened red with anger, as he took his very own bait. No one had ignored him since the rise of Lord Voldemort, especially not in his hometown of Boudicca.
‘Who is this girl anyway? She reminds me of someone, but surely I’ve not seen her before today! If I had, I surely would remember someone unique like her. She’s not extremely beautiful, as I’ve met those much more attractive, but there something’s about her that stands out from the crowd and assuredly none are her equal.’
Harriet saw Nott lose his concentration so that he slipped his defence posture. She smiled and moved her wand using the blasting curse. Nott did not get away, but took a direct hit that caused him to fall down. They were both too occupied to notice at once that the others had arrived. Harriet immediately thought of running to the stage to secure one of the stones for her team and forgot all about Nott, who shook off the curse and began to counter attack the unsuspecting Harriet.
Her legs turned to jelly, and she tripped, falling down instantly as she moved forward. She groaned from the pain of hitting her head on the ground and a moment later heard a voice calling to her.
“Don’t worry Harriet, we managed to get the last stone.” It was Neville.
“You can get him in the next round. We’ll be there if you need us.” Eugene uttered as he helped her up on one side while Neville was at her right.
“We’ll get him. That bastard!” Sebastian chipped in from behind
‘So his team gets a stone after all.’
An Hour Later, The Final Round
“You have half an hour to complete this round. Each member of each team will stand at one side of square pyramid with the other team. The captain of the team place the stone at the altar on their side of square to start the game on my count of three. You know the rules. Get ready.”
“Neville please place the stone as quickly as possible, because our team will not able to start until you do.”
Eugene kept having regrets knowing how forgetful Neville could be when he was nervous. He could imagine the worst scenario of what might happen – Neville standing like a petrified statue at the start of the race.
“Don’t worry he’ll be alright.” Harriet patted Neville to give him encouragement.
The square pyramid appeared before them, she had not expected this. Instead of the solid pyramid she had envisioned, it was made up of strings of lines that hang on midair. The strings contained three different colours – white almost invisible against the sunlight, a yellow like gold, with blood red being the final colour. The different coloured strings were mixing up and patterning themselves into the shape of the pyramid. The strings were ten metres apart in height.
She could imagine it looked like a maze from a bird eye view. At the middle of the pyramid lay a hollow of rectangle, containing a burning fire inside and above it, about a meter, lay a gold cup hanging midair.
‘The Boudicca’s Champion Cup! It is said that since the first opening of the contest no one but Lord Dumbledore in 789 A.D achieved the cup.’
“All we need is to get the silver cup at the top of the pyramid, then we will win.” said Sebastian interrupting her thought,
‘Oh yes, the silver cup, since no one’s able to get the gold cup the game will be won by default if one of the team gets the silver one. How pathetic but I should not say so, I might give up the challenge just to play safe.’
“You’ll have your broom for this round, however you already know the rules. Your brooms have been spelled so that your broomstick can only fly five metres above the string when it carries you. This is how we’re preventing candidates from cheating. Good luck to everyone.”
Harriet held out her hand to stop her team,
“Let’s wait a minute so I can perform a spell first.”
She closed her eyes and letting it blank before soaring her mind to search for a bird near by,
“Sister, please lend me assistance.”
“What can I do for you Faunspeaker?” a small hawk perched up a tree answered to her inquiry,
“I hope you could lend me your eyes for a few minutes sister.”
” Be quick about it.” She grunted in agreement
The hawk immediately flew in to the sky and viewed the pyramid, and at that moment the hawk’s view became Harriet’s own.
‘Just as I thought, the strings look like a maze and are patterned into different paths leading to the centre where the cup is held, similar to the second round. However I believe the colours of the string are important, but how so?’
Her soul returned to her body and she summoned three pieces of scroll on which she then imprinted the pattern of the strings and their colour.
“Only you will be able to see this, but keep it out of the way. I’ve a feeling that the colour of the strings are important, so don’t rush into the game immediately, let the other team lead first, before doing anything.”
“That’s not our way, we’re Gryffindors not Slytherins.” Sebastian disagreed with the plan, as he cried out of unfairness.
” Don’t forget why we here. Not for the glory of the bloody test but the prize money that we get to invest for those not pureblood children in need of education.” Eugene smacked Sebastian’s shoulder to remind him of their cause,
“Yeah, you’re right! Sorry Harriet.”
“Let’s go team and Nott is mine.” Harriet quickly headed over the side where Nott stood.
“Mount your brooms and get ready. Captain of each team be prepared to place your stone at the altar of your side. 1…2…3…go.”
Harriet noticed two members of other teams flying to one of the strings closest to them at the start of the race, while both Nott and she were standing behind to observe before charging in. The one closer to her was now standing on a yellow string when words appeared on air before that girl. Unfortunately the girl was not able to answer the question and immediately fell off the string, landing on the ground.
“Yes, folks, you can all guess by now each string is containing a question and if a contestant fails to answer the question, he or she will automatically fall off that string and have to start over again. The string that already has the answer given then cannot be used again, so let us wish all the contestants good luck!”
Harriet noted that Nott has started his race and she too quickly went on a red string nearby, as words appeared on air like what she had seen,
[You have one minute to answer the question. The question is: How do you defend against the Ninetail Fox?]
‘One of the dark creatures found mainly in the eastern world, luckily though I read about it yesterday in the ‘Master Defence of Dark Arts’ book.’
“The Ninetail Fox often disguised in the form of a human and to banish their spell, a Revealing Mirror is required. They have no fear of fire, but will run away from smoke, therefore a Fumigo spell would be sufficient to get rid of them. The Ninetail Fox is one of the immortal creatures therefore killing them is required to destroy their body…”
‘Let’s try the white string next, here we go.’
[You have one minute to answer the question. The question is, what is the tea leaf symbol for death and where would you find this information?]
“The Grim is the symbol for death and the information about tea leaf symbols is found in ‘Unfogging the Future’s book.”
‘It is too easy, only a first year knowledge. The question of the white string is basic, while the red string is an advanced question. Let’s try the yellow one, if my guess is right, it should be years six or seven level.’
[You have one minute to answer the question. The question is, what is the key ingredient of the Draught of Living Death and briefly give the process of making the Draught of Living Death for the other half of the points?]
“Asphodel is the key ingredient. The process to make Draught of Living…”
‘I’m right! I hope Neville, Sebastian and Eugene grasp the idea of the colour strings. They will be all right if they stick to the yellow and white paths. I should do the same but it would be non-challenging. Still I promised I would try my best to win the cup for them and recklessness will not help the team.’
Harriet sighed and continued her way up the ladder of strings hopping between yellow questions and sometimes landing on a red one, on which she got thrown off two times out of ten questions. Both times she jumped back onto the broomstick before she had fallen two meters from the string and got back on track in no time.
This drove the audience wild with excitement, for they were enchanted by her skilful handling of the broomstick. She held them in the palm of her hands with her daring moves, which only drove a deeper jealousy into Nott. Harriet was too busy throwing herself into the challenge of the contest to remember of the revenge she had promised on Nott.
By the time she was on top of the pyramid, Nott was once again only one step behind her. He had knocked the other teams off their broomstick to get on the white strings first. Ruthlessly he made his way up to the top and for the audience, there was no doubt to which house he was in when sorted at Hogwarts.
“Once again the final battle is between Nott’s team and the Griffinteam. We all favour the girl as she has grown on us through her daring escapes, but will she defeat the cunning of a Slytherin?”
‘I’ve no doubt where his sympathy lies.’ Harriet giggled when she caught the broadcaster’s speech.
“Only four strings on the top, three colours and one extra red string. To get the cup I need to answer the correct question of the string first. Another win for me.”
She attempted to assure herself by the last sentence.
She decided upon the yellow one when her broom in midair was pushed over by a strong force beside her, the force knocking her over as the audience screamed,
Before Harriet fell off of her broom, she quickly grasped onto one of the strings above her and as she pulled herself up, she realised it was a red string.
“Why does this always happen to me?” she moaned to herself.
[You have one minute to answer the question. The question is what animal has one voice, but goes on four legs in the morning, two legs at noon, and upon three legs in the evening?]
She turned to look at Nott, who was on the white string.
“I remember I heard it somewhere before but where …”
‘I’ve got to get the right answer before Nott does. There was no time left for any other alternative.’
“Of course! The Muggle’s legendary Sphinx riddle.”
“The answer is Man. Who in childhood creeps on hands and knees, in manhood walks erect, and in old age with the aid of a staff.”
‘It’s not a hard question but not many a wizard/witch would have reads Muggle book, so they would surely fail the question if they stumbled onto this one.’
Harriet’s hands immediately reached out to grasp the cup only to find that Nott had done the same at the exact same time
“A draw.” Silence enters the stadium at the announcement.
“First ever draw in history folks, but wait until we add the scores up, since each string contains points within them.”
Harriet’s eyes enflamed with raging fire, as she pointed her finger at Nott and shrieked venom at him. She was blind with anger at the unfairness of the event.
“I’ll not be seen at your level, worm!”
She grasps the broom and flies straight downward towards the open pit of fires in which the golden cup was held.
“Bloody hell! You thinking she is doing what I think she’s going to do?” Eugene asked to no one in particular, hand pulling his hair, as he feared for his friend,
“Her temper again.” Neville replied, shaking his head as he started praying,
When she dived into the pyramid, she immediately regretted her foolishness. Harriet could understand why no one ever attempted to get this cup.
‘Not only can I not see clearly by this smokes and steam vapours, it feels like I’m being roasted alive and I can not control the broom for I did not take into account the voltage the fire creates. It is almost strong as a cyclone.’
“What’s going on? Am I going crazy as well?”
Harriet heard voices but could not understand them. It was like a distance past where ghosts cried out to her trying to claim her soul, but she did not recognise them.
“Go away, leave me alone.”
‘I’ve have nothing to do with you.’ Her heart lightened as the mist of spirits left her alone after searching within her soul.
However, it did not end there. She came to comprehend that she was now closer to the pit of hell and would crash into it within minute. For the first time Harriet wondered if this was the end,
‘No I won’t die here, I’ve yet live my life.’
Harriet opened her eyes and formed a plan in her mind,
‘One chance to pull off; Here goes!’
“One metre to the cup. Pull, damn it.”
Swearing at herself as she pushed the broom upward so she could slow down the velocity of being pulling into the fires, she stood up slowly when the broom was flying sideways, moving forward to attain the cup into her hand.
‘Wow! It’s not hot at all even it burning in a fire pit.’
“She got the golden cup!” Someone cried out
“Did you see that?”
“Impossible. How did she do it?”
She held out the cup and practically flew toward Neville, smacking him to the ground.
Waves of comments roared over the stadium as the speculated event drove the audience wild. The noises within the stadium only died down when the Ministry of Magic gave the Griffinteam the prize award.
Lucius Malfoy POV
Lucius Malfoy was bored with life. He had been so busy with Ministry business that he rarely had time left anymore for further practicing of the Dark Arts. However he did find the joy in being manipulative and ran the Ministry well.
‘Not just well, but damn excellent.’ He mentally congratulated himself.
Lucius knew why he was bored,
‘Well what is a man do when he has everything?’
He has proven to himself how great he was. He never cared for other people’s opinions, of course,
‘Beside upholding the Malfoy image but that is not the point.’
Nott came to greet him followed closely behind by the Boudicca’s Committee and the Game’s Examiners.
‘A shepherd and his flock of herds,’ thought Lucius amused.
After a formal greeting, they settled down in the VIP box in the stadium.
“Where is your son Draco? Theodore would like to see him after the game.”
“He wanted to rest. After all he just arrived back from Austria. I heard that your son is competing in this game.”
“Yes, it traditional for my family to compete since it begun. I’m the last winner of the game.” Nott looked conceited on revealing the information
Lucius ignored him and remembered something he meant to ask while he was here,
“How is the old coot?”
“Oh, Dumbledore?” Lucius nodded
“He is quiet as a mouse, the old fool knows when he is defeated.”
“Dumbledore, a mouse?” amused at the description,
‘Nott must be more daft and ignorant than I thought.’
“You know what I mean, he took his house arrest well and rarely goes out of his house, only to get herbs in the Forest.”
“Our Lord is too kind for the likes of him.” Lucius grunted in agreement,
‘But I do understand why Voldemort allowed his nemesis live, after all seeing a broken old man is better than letting him have a quick death.’
‘The game is boring and I have better things to do.’
Lucius decided, even after the upheaval of the arrival of the unknown girl with the Pegasus. However the Pegasus caught his attention, only a very wealthy wizard/witch could afford to purchase the winged horse and even that does not guarantee that the master will be able to ride the horse. He himself was only able to ride his Pegasus because he had taken care of Zephyr since it was born.
Lucius twisted his cane, impatient for the game to be over. Nott’s son was just like those pathetic Slytherins that do not have a brain. However the boy was sly enough to get into the Serpent house.
‘Like father like son.’ He had met some of those pathetic Slytherins in his days when he was at Hogwarts but then he has also easily manipulated them. It was a pity the school had closed down at the command and decree of his Lord.
‘Thankfully my son takes after me and not Narcissa.’ He added as an afterthought.
“I’ll not be seen at your level worm.” A sneer from the girl captured his attention and he saw as she jumped down,
‘Only a fool will attempt to get the golden cup! Even I have read in history of the few who had died because of foolish bravery. The fire is as hot as boiling lava, and not only that, there are a multitude of spells woven inside that voltage to ensure no one is able to touch the cup. There is no way one can get out alive, especially one on whose Soul a dark spell is also included. Only the person who is pure, with no past and regrets would be able to survive the curse. Lord Dumbledore is the only one in history to get the cup and many still have wondered how he did it.’
It was over in mere minutes that left him speechless, as well as Nott.
Lucius’ eyes had monitored Harriet since she strode onto the stage. He sauntered gracefully to the Griffinteam to personally congratulate them as each name was called out, until he stood before her.
‘She is intriguing, who is she? Like everyone in the stadium I want to know everything about this girl. How the heck did she break the spells?’
The Board Committee stopped their announcement abruptly when they come to realise that they did not have her name on the scroll listing the participants because she had arrived late.
“Wh…what is your name?” The man asked, his voice quivering, as he was still dazed at the event and in awe of the girl before him.
“My name is Adrasteia Harriet Velius.” Harriet announced her name clearly, showing pride of her heritage, but unfortunately someone else recognised the names as well.
“She is Albus Dumbledore’s great great granddaughter.” The informer called out. Whispers coursed through the crowd as the Aurors (Death Eaters) moved toward her, wands pointing and ready to curse Harriet.
“Seize her!” Nott commanded.
Harriet’s eyes widened at the chaos, as some people shoved her back, trying to hide her, while others moved forward to hex and capture her.
“Get out of here Harriet!” Neville pulled Harriet back, shielding her away with his own body from the enemies.
“Bloody hell!” She swore aloud.
‘What the hell? How did I get myself into this mess?’ She groaned.
Thank You For All Who Have Reviews.
EVERGREEN FOREST is the forest that covered Boudicca region, enchanted from the Muggles.
FAUNSPEAKER is taken from the word Fauna and Speaker, it is meant to be an animal speaker. It is not a spell, but a pact of agreement with the animal kingdom. It is a gift. How it happened will be told later.
NINETAIL FOX is a well-known dark creature or demon in the Eastern World, but I made up the rest of the information on how wizard is to defend against it.
FUMIGO SPELL is a Smoke spell
ADRASTEIA (Greek Mythology) this was another name of the Greek goddess Nemesis.
HARRIET the Feminine form of the name Harry.
VELIUS a Roman surname that means concealed.
You can see from the meanings above, why I have chosen this new name for Harry in his female form. It basically disguises and hints at the fact that Harry is concealed within the form of a girl and that he is the Nemesis (of Voldemort).
Chapter 5: Chapter 4: Twist of Fate
Still Waters Run Deep By Mnemea
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Pairings: (I loved the HP/SS pairing so this story is about their love. Enjoy!) HP/SS, HP/LM, HP/TN, NT/TN, HR/RW, DM/GW, NM/LM (and many others pairs later).
Thank you Suraiyah for beta my story.
Chapter 4: Twist of Fate
“Seize her!” Nott commanded jotting Lucius awake from his thoughts.
The converging crowd either wanted to shield the young girl or capture her, showing that the people were divided. The wizarding world had yet to welcome the notion of Voldemort ruling over them, despite all the promotion strategies he had gone over to brighten Voldemort’s image, proclaiming the Dark Lord as a misunderstood case and blaming the war on the others.
Lucius doubted the wizarding world had actually bought any of it, but they let it happen because they simply preferred not to deal with the reality. This allowed the Death Eaters to take over without having to constantly fight revolutions at every turn.
The new regime appeared peaceful, although a bit of a dictatorship on the outer surface. However, the tortures were still continuing but people had turned a blind eye to such horridness. Muggles, Mudbloods and Bloodtraitors, often found disappeared from day to day, were hushed over.
The regulations and decrees of Lord Voldemort heralded many changes to the wizarding world, but few dared to raise their protests and those that did mysteriously vanished over the next few days. Nevertheless, Voldemort and Lucius tried to keep things under wrap and not to alienate the wizarding population in to joining what was left of the Order of Phoenix.
Lucius remained, silently watching Harriet being taken away by the Aurors. Nott had quieted the crowd at the stadium by subtly threatening to arrest anyone who dared interfere with the Ministry of Magic. The Aurors were thereby able to levitate Harriet as they strode out the Stadium, leaving behind an angry mass and a stunned Griffin team still holding the trophy cup and prize money, but bereft of one of their teammates.
“You may go.” Lucius’ authoritative voice rang out through the silent room,
“What?” Harriet could not comprehend why she was being released, when the words finally penetrated her mind,
“It is a misunderstanding.”
Lucius’ answer only piqued Harriet’s curiosity, she definitely did not intend on leaving until she was satisfied. Lucius was surprised that the girl still remained standing there, most would have been grateful to go and just leave it at that.
“Nott is paranoid in thinking that you are a threat to the Ministry of Magic.” He said curtly.
“And you don’t…” filled in what left unsaid,
“Do not misunderstand me girl…”
For some reason the word girl sounded offensive to her ears, so she supplied immediately,
“Harriet…uh, my friends call me Harriet.”
Lucius’ eyes clouded over for a second and he felt a stir of lust for the young girl before him, but he remembered who she was, Dumbledore’s granddaughter.
“You’re powerful; that much is indicated from your victory today. However, I’m good at assessing whether someone is a threat or not and my instincts have never failed me.”
‘Did I mention that I’ve an ability to sense others feeling when they first meet me? It is a rare gift that some Malfoys have and the gift has helped me to know whom I could use, whom I should befriend and of whom I should beware. It is a gift that has been exploited to the fullest.’
Harriet was not at all content with the reply, but she knew that was all she would get from this man. For some reason he looked familiar, but then so did many that she had met today, especially the owner of that Pegasus, although at the time she had not noticed, for other matters had dominated her mind.
Harriet nodded curtly to the Minister of Magic,
“Have dinner with me tonight Harriet?”
Lucius was shocked at his sudden invitation, even more so than Harriet, but she was too confused to take note of his expression.
“I can’t, but how about at the Lantern Festival tomorrow night?” She proposed when she remembered she would be able to get to town for the festival.
“Good, I shall see you at the festival.” He escorted her out of the building, leaving the Aurors with their mouth agape as she walked out scot-free.
Two Hours Later, Dumbledore’s Estate
“I can not believe my own granddaughter left me in the forest.” Albus’ cold voice grew even colder as time passed.
“Harriet is well known for her foolish schemes, but you, Neville, you should have known better. How could you’ve put her in danger? I expected you to be the sensible one. I can see now my trust is misplaced. ”
“Grandpa, I was in no danger.” Harriet said in an attempt to calm the livid Albus, but her words only made him burst,
“No danger! Jumping into the fire pit to get the cup…”
Harriet quietly reflected on her day and she knew that her grandfather was right. Luckily none of them had mentioned of her being captured by the Aurors. She was not sure if the estate would still be standing had they told Albus.
“…expose yourself to the wizard’s world. How many time have I said that Voldemort would harm you because you’re only what I’ve left in the world!”
Albus slumped down the chair in defeat, eyeing Harriet pitifully.
‘I should have paid attention; if I had looked at the date carefully I would have known that the game was on today. There is no way Harry would have passed the opportunity to participate. The game is the most anticipated event in the surrounding regions, it is only open every twenty years.’
“I’m very sorry, sir.” said Neville, as he took the cup of tea from Ginny and gave her a small smile before offering the steaming cup to Albus.
He had not managed to call Albus grandpa even though he was legally adopted. He was brought here when no one would take him in, fearing Voldemort’s wrath. Occasionally he called Harriet ‘sis’, but only when he forgot his shyness.
‘Please sir, forgive me.’
He wanted to beg because he was frightened that Albus would forsake him, and then where would he go? He belonged here. When he had first arrived at Dumbledore’s estate he was in deep depression, but talking with Ginny who was in similar circumstances had helped him to live again. Aside from Ginny, Tonks was always there, much like a big sister, continually encouraging him, while Harriet made him laugh. A happy family and they accepted him as part of it.
Albus waved his hand after accepting the teacup,
“I hope you learnt your lesson today Neville, Harriet.”
They all gave out sighs of relief, but the subsequent words stopped Harriet,
“Both of you are grounded for three months, that means if you leave the estate you’ll face the consequence and this is my last warning Harriet!”
‘How did I become so harsh? I used to be calm, using persuasion to push others into obeying me without given ultimatums. Harry was a good boy, I think I’ve created a monster.’
Outside Boudicca, Icedale Loch
“Harriet, I think we should turn back.”
Ginny wrapped her hands around Harriet’s body; she was shivering even though the breeze was only gently brushing against their skins. They had walked for half an hour, bringing them closer to town.
It was a starry night and the light of the full moon illuminated the trail, showing the path clearly to travellers. The deserted road encouraged Ginny to envision all sorts of dangers lurking behind the dark trees. She was wary and wondered how she had allowed herself to be persuaded to accompany Harriet. Their neighbours in the village had left earlier for the festival, but Harriet was only able get away when Albus retired for the night.
“Ginny, I need your support. I’ve told you, I promised to meet someone tonight and to break it would be considered rude. He is an angel…uh his looks anyway, but I want to know him better.”
Harriet spoke dreamily, for she still could not believe that Lucius had actually asked her out. He was powerful and his presence drew attention, including her own. She immediately ceased her daydream when sounds of music floated towards her. Only one word penetrated her clouded mind,
They were both bewitched by the music, at least until the wind changed direction, leaving the girls to snap out of the hypnotic chant.
“Flute, it’s definitely flute.” Harriet corrected her friend and Ginny nodded in agreement.
“No mortal could play so beautiful.” Ginny grimaced at the thought that come to her,
“I heard that only Faeries could play like that, but how? Aren’t they supposed to have disappeared from our world hundreds of years ago?”
“It sounds so sad, aching.”
Harriet completely failed to hear Ginny’s question and only seconds later her hands covered her chest as she struggled desperately to breathe,
“Harriet, Harriet… Are you alright?” Ginny cried out when the eyes of her friend moistened with tears and became foggy revealing her soul to be no longer present.
Harriet lost herself in the sound of the music as her mind resonated the eerily beautiful melody. She felt such pain and loneliness that she longed to comfort the player, as if it were the sole reason she was born in the world.
Harriet’s eyes cleared and taking a deep breath, she smiled wanly over at Ginny
“Thank you. I just feel, and it hurts so much that I don’t care to live anymore.”
“I’m so scared Harriet. I did not think the awakening spell would work. What do you mean that the music is sad?”
Harriet looked up in surprise at Ginny’s question,
“Didn’t you hear the undertone of the music?” she asked. Ginny shook her head, not knowing what to do or say to Harriet.
“May be only you could hear it. To me it was just enchanting and of course, I would have lost myself in such beautiful music, but to stop breathing?”
Ginny looked concerned and although Harriet brushed it off, she saddened at remembering the beguiling melody.
“Let us go.”
She did not much care to see Lucius anymore, only to go on searching for the flute player, but that was too ridiculous to even suggest and she did promise him a date. Both girls continued on their journey but no longer as enthusiastically.
Lucius had regretted his impulsive date invitation so he took Draco along. They had waited but as the hours passed by, Lucius’s patience began to wane.
‘No one has stood me up.’
However he did not know that this aggravation only caused him to want to meet Harriet even more. Lucius finally decided to walk out the town, heading in the direction of Iceni village with the hope of meeting Harriet halfway, as he went though all the excuses with which he could come up to explain why she was late.
Draco pacing slowly behind his father knew it irritated him to do so, but he wanted Lucius’ attention. Lucius, however, was much too lost in his thoughts to remember Draco close by, giving his son a rare chance to see his expression. Lucius Malfoy was a good father but he seldom displayed his emotions to his son; there were times Draco thought a statue to be of more feeling.
‘Who ever Father is seeing is important. I am curious at the one that has made my father so alive.’
Draco hurried after his father after making that observation. The younger Malfoy concluded that he wanted to meet this person, even if he was filled with jealousy right now. He knew both his parents lived separate lives. His father held no love for his wife; it was an arranged marriage. Besides the mutual obligation, they had both come to respect each other.
Both men came to a sudden halt when they heard the soft alluring tunes of a flute. The music disappeared as the wind drifted away, leaving both men sighing.
“Beautiful.” Draco whispered at last when he came to his senses,
“I wish I could play such tune.”
Lucius held in his hand a twig he had picked up and transfigured it into a flute.
“It has been long time since I’ve last played.”
Pulling it up onto his lips, he got ready to blow when Harriet appeared a few meters away. Harriet was far enough to hear Lucius’ last sentence.
The Lantern Festival, Boudicca Square
‘Lucius Malfoy! Malfoy the Death Eater! I still can not believe this is who Harriet is dating. What about his wife? But more importantly he is the enemy.’ Ginny’s internal voice screamed at the situation.
Lucius gazed at Ginny and knew that she was about to expose him, so he turned to Draco,
“Take Miss Wesley and show her a good time, Draco.”
The voice was coldly instructing, showing that no argument should come from either Draco or Ginny. Ginny felt Lucius’ icy gaze locking onto her own, the message was clear – if one word were let slip she would wish she had never been born. Draco pulled her out of Harriet’s sight and into the mist of the crowd before she even had a chance to decide what to do.
“I thought we were all staying together.”
Harriet wondered why Ginny disappeared with the stranger even though he had introduced himself as Draco Malfoy.
“They knew each other at Hogwarts and wanted to catch up. We should not spoil their reunion.”
“Is he your relative?”
“What’s so funny?” Harriet pulled a face at Lucius, causing him to laugh louder.
“You! Yes to your question, he is my only son.”
Harriet stood there, confused. She wanted to ask the next question about his wife but she was not sure how to politely do so.
Lucius quickly diverted her attention on getting their dinner,
“Since you live here, it is better that you recommend what is best.”
Harriet found free reign to order all she wanted. She retold her escapades and adventures, making Lucius lose his formality. He found that he was enthralled into her skilful storytelling and her world becomes his. He had no doubt that the girl drove her grandfather insane and this was indeed a very happy thought, as he deeply disliked the old man.
After dinner they wandered around, taking part of festival. When they came upon the bridge from which people dropped down paper candles onto the lake, Harriet, thinking that Lucius was the flute player, wanted them to spend the rest of their life together. She began to flutter but managed to say,
“Lucius, I want to make a wish. It is traditional here at the Festival.”
Her wand transformed the rose she had picked up on the bar of bridge, turning it into a paper candle and as she lighted it, she made her wish.
‘Hear me, Mother of goddesses and Guardian of earth, water, wind and fire, on this special day I, Adrasteia Harriet Velius, come before you requesting through your mighty powers to grant my wish that I a..and…the flute player forever bond and love.’
The burning candle gently landed upon the rippling water.
“What did you just wish?” Lucius questioned, curious at her intense concentration.
“It will not come true if I told you tonight but I’ll do so one day.”
Lucius only nodded at the promise, not many would make a wish on this auspicious night. Such wishes often came true, as it was said that a powerful being usually walked among them on festival nights so they had to be careful for what they wished because they might no longer want what they now wanted later.
Harriet, when making her wish, had almost uttered Lucius’ name, but she felt it was more correct to call the flute player instead as that was with whom she fell in love. They continued walking silently, enjoying each other’s company, until Draco and Ginny stumbled onto their path.
Harriet noticed that Ginny was flushed, but not from embarrassment. She seemed to be aflame and about to breathe fire upon Draco. Harriet swiftly took Ginny’s hand into hers and quickly said goodbye. She wrapped her hand around Ginny as they both moved off towards the town gate to return home, when suddenly a gang of young wizards blocked their path, holding wands pointed at them.
Harriet caught sight of Theodore Nott among them and knew that this was his attempt to attain revenge for the previous day.
“Just as I thought Nott, you’re a coward. Stop hiding behind your bodyguards and attack one on one. Of course that is too much to expect from you.”
Theodore with his hand gestured his gang to back down,
“Why not? I’ll show you not to underestimate me.”
They circled each other, hexing and disarming curses for what seemed like forever, though only mere minutes had passed. While Harriet was powerful and good at erecting barriers, Theodore’s knowledge of dark curses balanced out their ability. Harriet decided then that her education would expand to the dark arts when she returned home.
‘I need to prepare for all situations.’
‘That’s it, I’ve got to get home. May as well finish the duelling with a fist fight, the best strategy is after all to surprise your foe.’
Harriet moved forward so suddenly that Theodore only took in the situation when a punch had landed onto his stomach, causing him to fall down.
“You can’t do that.” Theodore groaned from the floor,
“You did not say there were any rules about no punching and it is a fight between us so that mean anything is alright as long the other is down.”
“You’re worse than a Slytherin.” Theodore moaned the words out as his friends helped him up.
“Is that a compliment Nott?” Harriet grinned and continued when no sound emerged from Theodore,
“See you around Nott.”
“I absolutely forbid my only son to wed that girl.” The elder cried in outrage when his son proposed the insane idea to him a few minutes ago.
“If not her, then I’ll marry none other, and the Nott family line can rot for all I care.”
Theodore would not back down once his mind was made up. His encounter with Harriet last night only served to confirm his decision. Unlike the other young ladies, who always flocked around him because of his father’s position, Harriet saw him as he was and even though it was not a good image, she forced him to stand on his own and he liked it. Losing again to Harriet last night was not welcome, but the revelation was an experience for him. Another reason that he wished to wed her was because he wanted some power over her, even if it were only bound by laws.
“I forbid you…”
“Give me one reason why I should not.”
“She is Albus’ granddaughter.”
“Albus Dumbledore is no longer in power if you’re afraid of him, and his is a pureblood wizard family, so there is nothing wrong with the family connection.”
“Ah yes but that is the girl’s mother side of the family.”
A tiny woman sitting there silently through the argument finally spoke,
“Velius is pureblood as well, though it is uncommon a squib is born in the family. It was quite a scandal when Cassandra Dumbledore ran off with Anthony Velius to the Muggle world.” She sighed,
“Ah yes, Cassandra was your friend wasn’t she?” The elder Nott looked at his wife gently; she was the only one he had learned to care for through years of living together.
“Yes, I’ll be happy if you bless this union as well. I’d like to think that Cassandra’s daughter will be my daughter in-law.”
Nott only grunted since he was outvoted.
‘It will not be easy. Dumbledore definitely will not accept this but I will use force. After all I do have power over the old fool.’
Dragon Keeper’s Inn
“Professor Dumbledore, to what do I owe this pleasure of meeting you?”
His voice indicated it was anything but a pleasure.
Severus hid his shock when Albus knocked on his door, but then nothing ever did escape that old man. He was only here for two days and had decided to return home this afternoon. He should have left immediately after getting his Pegasus from Town Hall, but the vengeance of his soul did not allow him to go, but the infuriating girl had disappeared without a trace and no matter how much he searched the entire damn town, he could not find her.
“Severus, please listen. Your agreement to what I’m about to ask of you will forever place me in debt to you.”
‘Whatever I expected, it was not this.’ Severus’ heart raced, ‘What could be so important that Albus lowered himself to plead to me?’
Albus briefly retold Harriet’s story dealing with Theodore Nott, and how Harriet was now on her way to Nott’s Manor unwillingly.
“What do you think I can do about the situation? I’m no longer part of the Ministry and in any position to command Nott.” Severus sneered.
“Yes, but if you agreed to announce that Harriet is your fiancé whom you had acquired when you worked at Hogwarts, explaining that as she was too young you decided not to publicly announce your arranged marriage at the time, the marriage can be prevented”
Severus was, for once, left speechless as he stared aghast at what Albus Dumbledore was suggesting. He would have loved better to do nothing but slam the door in the old man’s face.
“It would just be an announcement Severus, you need not to marry Harriet, just buy time for my granddaughter. She does not deserve to wed Mister Nott.”
“Harry did not deserve to die either.” Severus interjected, causing Albus to pale,
“If that is your last word, then I’ll take my leave. I would have thought that Harry would not have wished others to suffer because of him, either consciously or unconsciously.”
Albus moved through the door, hoping his ploy would be successful.
‘You’ll not regret it son, you’ll see I’m right.’
Outside of Boudicca
“Hands off my fiancé Mister Nott.”
A cold, stern voice disrupted the struggling couple, both so acutely in the heat of their discussion that they did not notice when they were no longer alone.
“Y..your .. é?”
Theodore could not help but stutter at the sight of his former Head House. He was afraid of Severus and somehow seeing his professor again brought back memories of Hogwarts. If Theodore had not been so worried he would have seen a similar disbelieving expression also upon Harriet’s face on the sudden news of her engagement to this stranger. Harriet only closed her mouth in time when she saw Albus was not very far away. His presence reassured her that it must be a ploy to keep her safe, because there was no way she could be engaged without knowing it herself.
“Yes, Mister Nott. We have been engaged since the day I accepted to teach at Hogwarts and that is my business not yours, Mister Nott. However your intention of sequestering my bride has brought me here. You’re dismissed to return to your father and do inform him that he should find you another bride.”
Theodore scurried off as if he were being hunted, while Harriet was bewildered at the situation and the distressed Nott. She could not remember where she had seen this man lately, because he reminded her of someone.
‘It must have been a passing glance at the festival,’ she concluded.
“I need to leave you two, everyone must be worried at home.”
Albus waved goodbye as he apparated out the forest.
“Our engagement is a farce right?”
The question irritated the Potion Master, as the tone contained hope. His mouth twisted and he sneered. He did not like being reminded of the fact that few cared to look beyond his face. However, he had recognised the girl when he arrived at the scene. The thief was found and now he would get the revenge that he had promised to himself.
‘No one makes a fool out of me.’
Severus tugged a smile and said,
“Why do you believe so? Didn’t Albus mention our engagement to you? Perhaps it has been such a long time since I came to claim my bride that you believe that you’re free to wed another.”
Harriet paled at his words,
‘The man is a malice-walking corpse. Greasy git!’ Harriet stopped at that thought, ‘What the heck? I remember that expression, almost as if it is my favourite insult for him!’
Severus Snape could not help but taunt the girl further, moving closer to her. He held her chin up, inspecting her as if he were purchasing a slave.
“Let me go, bastard!”
Harriet closed her mouth, she was surprised at her own words but she knew she would not take it back for her pride would not allow her to do so. For some reason this man brought out the worse in her. She felt hot and irrational at their close proximity. She began to nauseate and her body weakened as he held her closer. She was sure she would have fallen flat on her face if he were to let her go.
“Oh my! What language Miss Velius? I thought Professor Dumbledore taught you better.”
“Don’t you dare bring my grandpa into this. He must not have been in his right mind when he arranged this marriage. Let me go, I find your touches appalling.”
“Then I fail to comprehend why exactly you’re trembling under my hands.”
“That doesn’t mean all that much.”
“As it happens, it might, only I don’t desire to have a young girl at my mercy.”
“Then you’ve got the wrong impression. To begin with, I don’t like you.”
“Your body tells me different.” He patronized with her.
Harriet glanced over at him and she spoke fast in denial,
“You’re at liberty to doubt it. I don’t know why or how, but my opinion is formed!”
“You’re not careful with your insults, Adrasteia. Especially as my status of being your fiancé has a great deal of power over you.”
Harriet fumed and through her mind rang an unexpected thought,
‘Why do I bother? I could never win against him when we duel with words.’
Once again Harriet wondered why she thought so,
‘Have we argued before? Why can I not remember?’
“Goodbye Miss Velius.”
Severus was gone. His abrupt departure leaving a very angry Harriet, who simply stood there wondering if she were in the throes of some horrible nightmare and if now were not a good time to wake up.
“Insufferable man!” she swore aloud.
Thank you everyone that have been reviewed. I so glad that you enjoyed it, like every writer it is a greatest compliment.
I know the chapter is sappy but it is a romantic story after all.
Kateri1 Thanks for continue to reviews, it is encouraging and I hope you enjoy this chapter.
Xikum the explanation above was not really inept about why Nott wanted to capture Harry but in this story no one really know if Albus have great-great granddaughter that still alive there are rumor circulate since Harriet often went to town. However, Dumbledore is a powerful wizard family, that reason alone should surely made Nott to be afraid of her potential, which is proven when she got the golden cup. And yes, Harriet has falsely information fed to her so she believes she is younger.
Taligator I’ve liked all your stories and your review is really nice.
Chapter 6: Chapter 5: To Wed or Not To Wed?
Still Waters Run Deep By Mnemea
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Pairings: (I loved the HP/SS pairing so this story is about their love. Enjoy!) HP/SS, HP/LM, HP/TN, NT/TN, HR/RW, DM/GW, NM/LM (and many others pairs later).
Thank you Suraiyah for beta my story.
Chapter 5: To Wed Or Not To Wed?
Harriet found herself seated at a long table piled high with food and drink. The faces of strangers surrounded her and she only recognised one boy amongst them; he resembled Neville and sat not very far away from her. She wanted to call out to him, but somehow, she could not find the voice to do so. Trying to calm herself, she attempted to logically work out why she was frozen within her body, as it moved automatically without her consent or command. Luckily its eyes also moved around to take in the strange surroundings. Her gaze soon landed upon a hook-nosed man who was seated beside a strange man wearing a turban and whose obsidian eyes also stared straight into her own; it was her supposed fiancé.
A sharp, burning pain shot across her forehead. The pain vanished as quickly and suddenly as it had arrived. She sensed that the man did not like her; he directed an intense feeling like hate. She felt dazed, rather out of the scene, but managed to catch the words of an older red haired boy sitting beside her before she finally drifted away,
“…that’s Professor Snape.”
She was somewhere else. Once again she appeared to be sitting at a table, but this one was much smaller and fitted only a few people. The room in which she was now in contained pickled animals floating in glass jars all around its walls; it was dark and dreary, and she could not help but shiver from the cold,
‘Where am I?’ she wondered franticly, as she started to panic.
Harriet stared down at the parchment in front of her, a list of potions she was writing. She was quite surprised at some of the names; only a Potion Master could make them. Suddenly a rather familiar voice, deep and velvety, but this time sounding so cold and harsh that it frightened her, mocked,
“Tut, tut – fame clearly isn’t everything.”
The girl looked up in time to see the man’s thin lips curl into a sneer. Before she could reply, or rather retort, she felt dazed and once again she experienced a tug that transported her to another location. Instead of finding herself in another place however, she discovered that she was still in the same spot, but standing this time, with a simmering cauldron in front of her and a young Neville in her line of vision, along with her fiancé. His dark eyes pierced accusingly at her, as if what ever occurred were her fault, but for some reason she knew it was otherwise and anger arose within her,
“Why didn’t you tell him not to add the quills? Thought he’d make you look good if he got it wrong, did you? That’s another point you’ve lost for Gryffindor.”
Harriet wanted to scream at him, but she was frozen within the body, her body. All of a sudden, her eyes snapped open. She found it was morning. As she swept her tousled hair back from her face, she breathed slowly, taking deep breaths, attempting to calm her seizure of anger,
‘It’s a nightmare, just a nightmare. I’ve to expect this, after all he has been constantly on my mind for the last 48 hours.’
“But, why did it seem so real?”
“You don’t want me to get onto my knees, do you Ginny?” Harriet begged.
“This is not like you! I don’t know why you think Malfoy can help you to break that marriage contract.”
“He is the Minister of Magic. If he can’t, then who can? Please Ginny!”
Ginny grumbled; she would have liked nothing better than to tell Harriet a few truths about that horrible man. However, she knew better, for Harriet had gone to a great length to protect the man after seeing him carrying a flute on that fateful night.
‘Perfect! Hah! The Malfoys are a rotten bunch and it is hard to accept that my best friend puts him on pedestal. It is pointless to talk to her in this state though.’ Ginny came to that conclusion and so, she nodded her head in assent.
They walked to town after Ginny broke the spell trapping them within the estate. Harriet smiled at the thought of seeing Lucius again. She had been in agony after that startling confrontation with the man who claimed to be her fiancé. Albus, her grandfather, had his damn twinkle in his eyes, and it only kept getting brighter whenever she asked him about the marriage contract.
His only reply had been,
“I’m sure Severus will tell you when the time comes.”
Harriet ‘s mouth twisted in rage as she dwelled on that memory. It did not help that she was troubled at night by repeatedly dreaming of the man, dreams that always only served to irritate her and cause her to become more prejudiced in her opinion of him.
‘Surely the Mother of Goddesses heard my prayer on the festival night, for I am certain I felt a strong magic surrounding me after making my wish.’
Ginny did not dare interrupt Harriet’s ruminations, for on whatever it was, she could feel the heat of anger radiating from her friend. She had no idea to whom Harriet was engaging; both Albus and Harriet refused to discuss it. She heard voices rise whenever they were both in the same room, only to stop swiftly when someone else entered.
Harriet seemed to hate the man, who ever he was, and Albus was only amused at Harriet’s banshee like tirades. Everyone else was bewildered at the news, but she was secretly happy about it, because surely anyone was better than that low life Lucius Malfoy. However, she too felt sorry for Harriet on her arranged marriage.
The girls soon arrived at the manor, which Malfoy had hired for his stay there. They both waited at the door, until it was swung open revealing a house elf that asked,
“Can I help you ladies?”
“We come to see Mr. Malfoy. Could you go and tell him that Miss Velius has arrived to see him.”
“I’m sorry Miss Velius, but Mister Malfoy has already left the county and is on his way to return to London this very morning.”
‘I don’t see at all. How can he leave without a word?’ Harriet was not sure if she wanted to cry or scream at the situation.
Another house elf appeared and his clothes were more ragged than that of the one speaking to them. He whispered something to the other elf, giving him a letter.
“Miss Velius, I believe this is your letter. We were going to owl it on one of our owls but did not have time yet to do so, as we have to clean the house. We’re sorry if we have inconvenienced you Miss.” The house elf looked apologetically at them.
Harriet took the proffered letter and smiled at them. They both said goodbye and headed off on the road once more.
Harriet clutched the letter as they found a shaded area in which to sit, but Harriet who was nervously standing and leaning against the tree, immediately began tearing off the envelope with its intricate dark green seal.
I received an important letter this morning from London that required my presence back at the Ministry. I am disappointed to leave this place when I have just started getting to know you. I have many plans for us to spend time together, but it seems these will have to wait. I’m sure that I will be back when I work out the problem in London.
Minister of Magic.
Harriet was speechless; the letter was promising but yet it was so cold and formal. She had rather expected an apology for disappearing suddenly. After all she had owled him yesterday stating that she was going to come over for a rather important discussion.
“Harriet?” Ginny queried
Silence greeted her and she saw Harriet’s drawn face, but the hurt within it was quickly masked until it was blank and emotionless. Harriet had quite an expressive face; it reminded her very much of someone she had loved dearly once and still did.
Harriet handed the letter over to Ginny, and strode down the road. Ginny skimmed through the letter quickly, and knew immediately what bothered her friend. Quickly she ran to catch her up and as she walked silently with her, she moved closer to the dark haired girl to give her comfort.
‘She is expecting too much from him.’ Ginny sighed.
They continued walking for hours, until Harriet came to a halt and abruptly said,
“I am not going home. You’re going back to tell Albus that until he breaks the engagement with that man, I’ll not be returning home.”
Ginny knew Harriet had given her ultimatum and that meant Harriet would not change her mind. Ginny immediately knew the choice for herself and that was,
“I’m staying with you Harriet.”
“Thanks.” Harriet replied as she clasped her hand with Ginny’s own and an understanding passed between them.
“However, we do need to send Albus a letter.” Ginny responded with a smile.
After they sent off the letter, Harriet remembered a very important detail.
“I’m forgetting that grandpa has a tracking spell on us.” She cried out.
“I’ll break yours and you mine, OK? However, where will we be staying during this boycott time?” Ginny asked as she grinned in mischief at her friend.
“The Moon Temple of course. I doubt Grandpa will figure out that we will be in our own backyard.”
They both laughed at the plan they had to outwit Albus. Each was so occupied in imagining Albus’ face that they forgot their own trouble as they headed off to the Moon Temple.
“What did he say?”
Theodore began to repeat Professor Snape’s reply, word for word, when his father held his hand up,
“I heard you the first time.” The elder Nott snapped at him.
His face turned pale and blue, then red. Theodore knew that his father’s pride was eating him for being put down by Professor Snape once again. There was no doubt his father was quite jealous of Snape, considering him as his rival for Lord Voldemort’s fondness and high rank in the Death Eater Inner Circle. He had heard much colourful language emerging from his father on occasion, particularly on how much a fool Professor Snape was for resigning his prestigious position, but quite gleeful that his rival had done so.
“You are going to marry that girl.”
His father stated firmly and his eyes glimmered, showing that he had come up with a plan. Theodore wanted to protest; he had no desire to cross his ex-Head-House, but the prospect of Harriet as a wife was delightful, and he knew better than to argue with his father when it came to plans of humiliation for his rival.
“Well boy, Albus Dumbledore is in my hand is he not? I’m sure the girl would agree to an immediate wedding when I have taken the old fool into my custody. Snape will not able to do anything about it, because it will be too late when he finds out. After all, the girl is the one who broke the contract not us. Snape will have to deal with Dumbledore himself and it’s perfect. We’ll get two birds with one stone!”
“I never knew your wedding could be so beneficial.” He added as an afterthought and laughed, taking a sip of firewhisky as he savoured his victory over his unsuspecting rival.
“For the final time, my granddaughter is not here.”
For the first time in the last two days, Albus Dumbledore was glad that Harriet had gone.
“If Miss Velius will not appear in the next minute, I am arresting you for your continual association with the outlawed Order of Phoenix. One of my spies happened to see a man looking like Arthur Weasley meeting you yesterday.”
Albus’ eyes seemed to be amused, but there was a glint of anger deep within them if one studied closer.
“Is that a threat Mr. Nott?”
“No Dumbledore, it is a fact. However, if your granddaughter is wed to my son, the allegation will be dropped, after all family does stick together.”
Dumbledore grunted and decided to be silent. There was no point in arguing when he understood the motive behind the attack. Nott grated Dumbledore’s patience until it finally reached its limits,
“If you wish to arrest me, then do so, Mr. Nott. I have nothing further to say to you, except I will never allow Adrasteia to marry your son. If you wish for him to do so, then do talk to Professor Snape about the marriage contract, the fireplace is that way.”
“Take him.” Nott ordered the Aurors who had accompanied him.
They were ushering Albus Dumbledore out of the door when a voice ceased them,
“Wait! Let my grandpa go, I’ll come with you.”
Nymphadora Tonks stared at the young bride’s face. The bride’s stunning eyes, one the colour of dark emerald green and the other an alluring midnight blue, seemed to be mocking her, but they also held intense sadness, intermingled with fear. This was perchance the face of an angel, but the lips were wickedly sinful, driving the minds of both genders mad to imagine devouring that sensuous mouth until it looked thoroughly kissed.
Tonks had once seen that same type of lips on a certain young man, the long dead hero of the wizarding world. The bride’s jet-black’s hair was braided behind the veil, but a few curls dropped out as if having a life of their own. The sunshine streaming through the window caressed the hairs, reflecting them into an auburn black, that very unusual colour, if anyone cared to notice.
Tonks marvelled at the genius of Albus Dumbledore when she realised the truth about the girl called Harriet. Perhaps it was because she was a Metamorphmagus that she was able to recognise the unusualness of the girl’s appearance when she arrived at the estate to help Albus to look after Harriet.
She admitted that it had been quite a strange request from Albus after all the years she had worked in the Order of Phoenix.
She often wondered who Harriet was after living with them for three months. The girl appeared strongly familiar to her. She did not realize the reason, at least not until the day she stumbled onto her old family photo album, the one that was once kept by Sirius, and glimpsed the wedding photograph of James and Lily Potter, causing her to receive a tremendous shock, particularly as she had looked up and found Harriet walking into her room. She had closed the album hurriedly, putting it aside to talk to the younger girl.
She showed Albus this photo, as well Harriet’s own photograph, side by side the first chance she got. Albus simply put them together and smiled.
“It is not yet time, Tonks. Best to leave everything to the future.”
Tonks knew when to quit. She realized the truth even though no explanation was ever provided by Albus.
“Miss Velius, we have to be in the Town Hall within twenty minutes. Are you ready?”
Tonks nodded and returned to look one last time in the mirror, seeing the bridal gown perfectly upon her frame, and wondering what she was doing now.
‘To wed or not to wed?’
Thank you everyone that have been reviewed.
Chapter 7: Chapter 6: The Road To Nowhere
Still Waters Run Deep By Mnemea
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Pairings: (I loved the HP/SS pairing so this story is about their love. Enjoy!) HP/SS, HP/LM, HP/TN, NT/TN, HR/RW, DM/GW, NM/LM (and many others pairs later).
Thank you Suraiyah for beta my story.
I’m really sorry for the late posting of this chapter. Thank you everyone for the reviewed and I really appreciated the feedback. I hope you’ll enjoy this chapter.
Chapter 6: The Road to Nowhere
There was a dash of light now and then from the rocky shore. A stranger who happened to glimpse it would have merely thought it a group of fireflies and proceeded to ignore it, but should one observe closely the seconds between each glow, they would have noted that it adhered to a precise rhythm, much like a signal or maybe even a secret coded message.
Rustling sounds emerged from a slight, thin figure, which moved toward the light quickly, as if impatient to reach its destination. When the furtive figure, shrouded completely in a dark blue cloak, reached its target location, the hood of the cloak was pulled back, only to reveal a pretty young woman in her early twenties, with distinguishable pushy hairs bound in coil that seemed ready to escape at any moment. There was a slight frown marring her face, but her chocolate brown eyes were darkening with delight, as well as worry.
Arms came out of the darkness to wind around the young woman’s slender waist, pulling her closer to their source.
A light laugh escaped the woman’s mouth as she eagerly returned the embrace when a red haired man became visible. The man tightened his hug as a thin black cloak slid down onto the ground to reveal the rest of his body.
“Mione, You’re looking beautiful, as ever.” He whispered as his eyes pored over her face, memorizing their every contour, and there was regret penetrated his eyes and thoughts by the end of his exploration.
“Ron, you know it’s dangerous to come here too often.”
“I’m sorry love, but I needed to see you, but first let us talk about your days.”
“I’m fine Ron, you know that. It is you who’re in the front line and could have been captured on any day. I’m so worried and lately there’ve been ominous signs indicating that something’s going to happen to you.”
Ron started to laugh and pulled Hermione down onto his lap as he seated himself upon a nearby rock.
“Oh love, I’m here aren’t I? Nothing Voldemort or his servants could do will do anything to us. You don’t believe such things do you, ‘Mione? Remember that fraud Trelawney, just think about her, and you shall forget all that nonsense. The future is what we build on and it has nothing to do with neither destiny nor fate. We are making progress ‘Mione. We actually gained a few more members these last months. Things are looking up.”
Ron spoke firmly and quite convincingly that Hermione pulled a face but leaned back against the flame haired man’s shoulder as she released a tiny sigh of content.
“I still cannot help but feel…”
“How’s the greasy git?” Ron asked in an attempt to distract her and it worked, like it did every time.
Ron asked, smiling playfully as if he had known that question would drive Hermione mad. Hermione shook her head exasperatedly but answered,
“Professor Snape is well! Though if Zonne and I’ve not been hassling him to eat every meal, I’m sure he would have staved to death.”
“I’m glad he saved you. I didn’t hear the news of your execution until it was too late. Father had to stun me to keep me from going after you. I wish I could do something to return the favour, I really hate to owe that man anything.”
“Ron, the Professor may be a bit prejudiced, but he is a good man and working for him allows me to see that he is really quite brilliant. He has successfully researched many potions to cure or alleviate fatal diseases in the world. I really don’t mind having a life debt to him Ron. In fact I’m honoured that he considered my life worth saving.”
Hermione chided Ron; they have often had similar conversations, but Ron had yet to accept the idea that Severus Snape was anything but the overgrown bat from their childhood, although he had been persuaded to cease the name calling of his ex-professor either by emotional blackmail or scolding from Hermione.
They both dropped the subject and instead spoke quietly about their day to day activity until suddenly Ron became tense when his mission was mentioned.
“I just remembered why I’m here Mione, I’ve received a message from a spy at the Ministry of Magic and I’m going to London to confirm the information that was given to us. I’m not sure how long I’ll be so don’t wait for me on the 15th of this month.”
“Ronald Weasley! London…that place is crawling with Death Eaters and his loyal followers! I knew it; I felt something bad coming. Please don’t go…isn’t there any way that you can get out of this mission?”
Hermione had jumped up from his lap to stand facing Ron Weasley accusingly as she hit his shoulder.
“I’m sorry love but I really must do this. It is important to the Order.”
“The Order…damn! I’m sick ‘n tired of this war.” She declared as she started to cry.
Ron comforted her as best as he could. Sometimes he wished they could be selfish and elope to the Muggle world, forgetting all the problems that they have carried. But, they are both true Gryffindors to the core.
‘Maybe Snape is right. We’re foolish Gryffindors after all!’
Tonks shoved the silvery white veil above her head as she scrutinized the small cabin she was shut in. The room was sparsely furnished, containing only a bed and a small table that lay beside her. The bottle of firewhisky and two wineglasses on that table were the only noticeable objects in the room.
Tonks had the urge to seize that bottle and knock herself out. However, her trembling hand captured her attention and her gaze quickly darted down to the third finger of her left-hand. A white ring was now placed there, a mockery of a symbol.
“Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to celebrate…”
Tonks mechanically tuned out the customary wedding vow speech of the priest, as she fidgeted in her snowy gown. The dress was actually quite beautiful; it clung to her curvy figure and spread out at the hem like the ripples of sea foam. A transparent wizarding robe patterned with delicate roses was worn atop the garment, and instead of hiding the lovely bridal gown beneath it enhanced its elegant beauty.
Nevertheless, Tonks’ mind, unlike that of most other brides on their wedding day, was racing with very different thoughts, focusing instead on ideas of escape and the actual legality of the wedding. Perhaps it was the replay of such thoughts that helped Tonks to cope with the situation. A hand soon nudged her elbow, reminding her of where she was, as she turned to hear the elderly priest repeat his question,
“Do you, Adrasteia Harriet Velius, take Theodore William Nott as your lawfully wedded husband?”
The priest stared in shock at her vehement reply but the elder Nott, who happened to be standing beside him harshly commanded,
“She meant yes, get on with it!”
“I pronounce you husband and wife. You may kiss the bride.” The priest almost whispered, but there was a disapproving undertone to his words.
Theodore pulled Tonks closer for the traditional wedding kiss, but she turned her face away at the last moment so that he was only able to peck her cheek through the thin veil. Theodore only smiled faintly and grinned at the audience, but his eyes were aflame with anger.
The wooden door opened slightly, almost soundlessly, and Theodore Nott walked in to the small cabin. He and his new consort stared at each other, although each had highly contrasting thoughts about the other. Suddenly Tonks noticed Theodore had his wand clutched in his hand. Her eyebrows rose at the object – clearly he wanted to weave a spell and Tonks was quite sure that no spell he cast would be any good for her. Her eyes frantically searched the small room to find a place to cover.
The flash of light came straight at Tonks causing her to reflexively hurl a glass from the table beside her before dodging the curse. The curse cracked the wineglass into splinters that blew in every direction before it continued on to smack the wall, barely missing Tonks by an inch or so. Tonks immediately dashed towards Theodore’s torso and knocked him onto the ground. Both were wrestling to get the wand that had dropped off Theodore’s hand when he was shoved down.
“What were you trying to do, using a live bond spell on me creep?”
Tonks uppercut his jaw as she grabbed hold of the wand with her left hand.
“Father…” Tonks snapped at the word,
“Bastard, I’ll kill you.”
Her hand connected many punches to Theodore’s face; one of them broke the man’s nose causing blood to smear over his face and onto Tonks’ hand. Tonks hardly noticed, fully lost to her insanity as she continued hitting Theodore. Finally, he was able to escape her control to run out of the room.
Tonks hurried after him, leaving the wand forgotten on the floor as she hastily caught up to him, both of them now on the deck of a boat.
A tradition of Boudicca was that on their marriage night the newly wedded bride and the groom spent their first night together on a boat that drifted on the Icedale Loch. It was said that by such an act, their union would be blessed by the spirits that dwell in the region.
“Stay still snake, I’ll make you pay for this…”
Tonks threatened, still on her murderous rampage, rage evident on her face as her hands throttled the young man who struggled desperately to escape her, but did not want to hurt his bride. They both moved around the deck, far too busy to notice the wind change and blow heavily against the boat, as sinister clouds gathered and rain poured from the Heavens onto them. The raging loch was almost like the two figures struggling on the deck.
The boat shifted suddenly, as the fierce waves caused it to turn to one side, which flung them over the rail unexpectedly. Theodore grasped hold of the bar when he came to comprehend that they were hurled over, but Tonks only managed to catch hold of his feet by instinct. Theodore held out his arm, reaching down to grab Tonks’ hand,
“Take my hand!”
He pleaded with her as he realised she was ignoring his outstretched hand,
“No! I’d rather die then owe a wizard’s debt to you!”
Tonks’ eyes illustrated that she was still lost in her insanity. She released his feet to fall back into the deep black icy loch waiting to swallow her up.
“Adrasteia! Please…oh Merlin! Nooo!”
Theodore’s anguished cries on seeing his beloved fall into the stormy waters were engulfed by the apathetic gale.
Ginny’s finger swirled around the pond water weaving ripples upon its calm surface. She was bored with the idle time she was spending and as she turned over to be blinded by the sun, she quickly held up her arm to block out its assaulting light. Her gaze shifted over to where Harriet lay near the oak tree, well under its shade more precisely. Harriet was mumbling of cloud shapes that passed by.
No message had yet been sent to them indicating Albus was searching for them and this concerned her a great deal. Seven days had passed since they had hidden in the Moon Temple. The place was a ruin; it would have fallen completely apart if not for a strong binding spell by the last priestess that once lived there.
It was thus no surprise when Harriet recounted her tale as the tale of Elena Dumbledore. She had been Albus’ eldest sister and one of the first of many victims affected by Grindelwald’s tumultuous rise. Hers was a sad story, heartbroken when her fiancé died on her arm the very day before their wedding. Ginny remembered the portrait that had hung in the living room, who was very polite and kind to her since the first day she arrived to live at Dumbledore’s estate. It was hard to believe that same laughing young woman perished of grief in this ruin as a lonely priestess.
Ginny bit her lower lip as she was troubled by Harriet’s silence. It was unusual of Harriet to be quiet for this long but she was clearly rationalising, for often Ginny had found Harriet murmuring incomprehensibly while they were here.
“Let’s go home!”
Harriet’s voice penetrated Ginny’s thoughts suddenly, and not expecting the announcement she sprung up, only to stare straight into a face, Harriet’s face, just an inch from her own. Ginny’s heart ceased its beating at that moment and she clutched her chest as she cried out,
“You nearly give me a heart attack Harriet!”
“Gee…I did call out to you.” Harriet commented as she rolled her eyes.
“I thought we’re boycotting!”
“I know!” Harriet exclaimed as she blushed brightly at Ginny’s amused smile,
“It’s just, well…I’ve got this feeling that’s been eating at me for the last five days. I don’t think I could stay here any longer and not without knowing what’s going on.”
Harriet’s voice rose, she was confused. However, Ginny readily agreed to return, as she too had been uneasy for last few days.
When they arrived back at the estate, thinking that they had over reacted and no doubt Albus would be awaiting them with his twinkling eyes merrily dancing at them, they froze on their spot at the gate, shocked at the state of the estate. The place was like a trash heap, wrecked apart. Tears flowed freely from Ginny’s eyes as she stood there witnessing her second home also destroyed while she was away. Harriet knelt down upon the ground, picking up the now charred vine that Albus had grown in an attempt to keep her inside the house. Anger and fear seized her heart.
She screamed aloud when she remembered of him.
‘Please not him!’
She flew to the door to heave into Neville, who happened to hear her frenzied screaming.
“Harriet! I’m so glad you’re alright!”
Neville cried and wrapped his arm around her. His body was trembling from exhaustion and the stress from what had occurred, so he collapsed, fainting upon her.
“Where is Grandpa? And Nym?”
Harriet shook Neville’s body as if it were that of a ragged doll. Neville blearily opened his eyes to the familiar face of Harriet. He gave a relieved cry,
“Ouch… I’m so glad you’re alright!”
“Harriet, please stop shaking Neville, he is injured.”
Ginny yelled when she become aware of Neville being covered with bruises and cuts, all injuries that seemed to be healing. Obviously he had healing charms on him and that only meant the wounds were severe. Unfortunately, Harriet was in such a distraught state that she only had one track of mind,
“Neville, concentrate on what I’m asking. Where is grandpa?”
“Oh Harriet! I tried to fight them but they hexed me unconscious, leaving me bleeding to death as they took Grandfather off the premises Luckily, Mr Rolland and Eugene came by afterward to heal me. Mr Rolland overheard Nott ordering the Aurors to come with him to take care of Albus Dumbledore. Mr. Rolland told me when I was well enough to comprehend that grandfather had been transferred to a more secure area. He could be anywhere in Britain or even any other part of Europe!”
Neville sniffed and was in the same tearful state as Ginny, who dabbed her eyes with a lace handkerchief, however Harriet was having a hard time to take in what Neville just told her.
“How did it happen? I was just away for about seven days…Nym?”
She realised another family member was missing,
“Where is Nym?”
She ventured again when Neville became silent at her question. His breathing seemed to shallow as he recalled the tale to Harriet.
“She turned into you, at first I thought it was you, but after they left we become aware about what happened, but it was too late. Grandfather tried to stop the wedding but the Aurors detained him at the entrance. The next morning when the boat arrived back, the news of the bride going overboard was widespread over town. It was awful. I saw Grandfather cry. I’ve never seen him cry before; he seemed to be at a loss after the news. The next day when the Aurors came to the house to arrest Grandfather claiming that you followed his instructions, I mean Nym did, to bodily harm Nott’s son on their wedding night…”
“He must have put up a fight surely.” Harriet paled even further at the story.
“No, he was just lost in his thoughts. I don’t think grandfather even knew what was going on.”
Harriet fell back away from Neville as she moved to the corner of room to rock herself into a ball. Silence was stressed afterwards, and only Ginny came to her senses and remembered the condition of the house,
“What happened to the house then?” Ginny asked, her eyes travelling over the chaotic rooms. “It looks like it was damaged from hexes and curses.”
Neville blushed brightly and replied,
“It was the Aurors and I. I tried to keep them away from grandfather but I was not good enough.”
Ginny only nodded. If they weren’t too busy contemplating the situation they would have showed how proud they are of Neville, who had stood up bravely to the Aurors, facing them like a true Gryffindor.
A caring hand was laid upon Harriet’s shoulder but she did not look up like she used to do when Ginny came to comfort her in the past. Instead, she seemed to recoil slightly from the touch.
“It’s all my fault, isn’t it!” Harriet cried softly after a long time,
“Shush Harriet! You didn’t know it would turn out this way.”
Ginny knew Harriet would not accept a lie as comfort in this situation.
“If I just listened to grandpa and stayed at home, none of this would have happened.”
She looked up gratefully at Ginny’s words, but even if it hurt, it was the truth. Tear streaks splotched her cheeks and her eyes were stained with red.
“I never I knew I’m so ignorant until now. I always wanted to attend Hogwarts when Grandpa told me about it. I’m jealous of Neville and you of being there. I had concluded that if I’d attended I would have been in Gryffindor House, where the brave and heroic dwell. I’m such a fool though, running around the town and getting into trouble. Thought I’m better than others and become too conceited of my inner born abilities.”
Harriet sobbed louder as she wrapped her arms around herself even tighter.
“I’m such a brat. Merlin! I am always running into danger as if I’m invincible. Endangering others and myself. Thoughtless spoilt brat, that’s what I am!”
Ginny could not let her friend delve into deeper depression so she intervened as best as she could.
“Harriet, stop it at once! You can stay and continue your self-pity or do something to about it. The past is the past, no use crying over a spilt potion; even through you may be all that you’ve said, you are young and allowed to make mistakes. It was expected of you to rebel against Albus’ authority when he locked you within the house.”
She smiled gently at the gaping face,
“You didn’t make the same mistake as I did, did you?”
Harriet asked, her voice remaining unconvinced of the argument. Ginny only replied sadly,
“I’m different Harriet, but if it is any comfort to you, I did once, before the war.”
“Now let us get back to the important question, what are we going to do now?”
Harriet stared at her blankly, it had always been Harriet in command, but now she was too emotional to contribute anything useful to their discussion.
“We certainly can’t stay here, everyone thinks you’re dead and things would worsen if anyone sees you now. We need to get Albus back, but first we need shelter and must think of our move.”
Harriet nodded silently, as she considered Neville and then questioned,
“Is Neville alright? I’m such as bad sister. Gosh! He is injured…”
“He is alright but needs some rest. That is what he’s doing at the moment. I put him to sleep with dreamless potion.”
“Thank you, Ginny. I don’t know what I was thinking when I shook him.”
“You’re hurt, it is understandable. Neville is too. He’s just glad to see you!”
Harriet echoed, while crying again,
“Gosh! Nym, she died for me. I feel like a murderer.”
“Nym is anything but foolish like you, she is strong and it was her choice. She wouldn’t want you to berate yourself like this. We don’t have the time to mourn for her now. I’m sure Albus thought of all situations; he must have left instructions in case of an emergency. He would have some guidance for us.”
Ginny suggested after a long thought over the problem.
“Well if he did, he certainly did not tell me.”
Harriet was surprised that Albus would have thought that there would be situations such as this arising.
“Did he say anything about leaving you anything if he’s not here?”
“Hmm, well, I believed he did once say when he died he wanted me to have his favourite telescope, the one he always used to look up in the sky at night. Oh yeah, he said, “Once I leave this world, I want you to have this telescope Harriet. It had been given to me when I first attended Hogwarts by my father, who loved the Heavens as I do. I hope when you look to the stars, you will find your earthly due.””
“Isn’t it rather strange that Albus said that, finding your earthly due in the stars?” Ginny asked,
“I never thought about it, I just assumed he meant that if I set lofty enough goals for myself, I would have a successful life. You know how he is, always speaking in riddles. He knew I never cared as much about the stars as he does, so it doesn’t mean as literally as it sounds.”
Harriet shrugged her shoulders as a flare suddenly lit up in her eyes,
Harriet exclaimed, as she jumped up and quickly pecked Ginny on her left cheek before running out of the room.
“What?” Ginny asked, stunned and confused, as she followed Harriet.
Harriet rushed into Albus’ room to take out his telescope and swiftly she removed the metal ring of the base of its outer cylinder. The mirror dropped out first before she extracted a piece of rolled papers. Harriet quickly muttered an enlargement spell to reverse the stack of documents back to their original size.
Surprisingly the documents became a small file of papers with two sets of letters on it. Harriet looked at the letters, one said ‘To my beloved Harriet: Only upon my death, can you read this.’ She quivered in anticipation of the worst, as she tore open the envelope. It did not budge.
She now knew with certainty that Albus was still alive somewhere.
She glanced at the second letter, on which was inscribed,
‘To my beloved Harriet: Only open in case I’m not there and you are in need of assistance.’
This time she was able to open the letter, which read,
I write this letter in case there is an emergency and I’m not there to help you. If you find this letter then you would also have found my will. You will be unable to read the accompanying letter unless I die, so if you can’t, it of course means that I have not yet crossed that boundary. The file of papers is a journal of my lifetime works, containing spells and knowledge I’ve been collecting and learned over the years. I hope it helps you to overcome whatever difficulty you are facing right now.
Inside this envelope, there is also a map that will take you to where you may find the help that you require. You may trust these people; they are called the Order of Phoenix. There is much I wish to tell you but it is best I keep this short.
If Ginny and Tonks are with you then they will explain and answer any questions you have regarding the Order. Take Neville and everyone with you on your journey. Please take care and remember always that I love you.
Your beloved grandpa,
“The Order of Phoenix?”
She turned enquiringly to Ginny who was reading the letter behind her back.
“Where do I start?”
“How about from the beginning?”
“I’m not sure, but this is all I know about the Order since I’m too young to join…”
“Nym, she is a member too.” noted Harriet.
Ginny nodded, but was distracted. She was itching to take the map out because for the first time since she had lived here she knew where her family was hidden. Harriet took out the map and showed it to Ginny, who did not blink once her eyes settled upon the crinkled parchment.
“The Road to Nowhere?”
Harriet eyed the chart and ashened upon seeing the bright red written words that Ginny had spoken aloud. Where would this journey take them?
Only the future would tell.
Chapter 8: Chapter 7: A New Beginning
Still Waters Run Deep
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Pairings: (I loved the HP/SS pairing so this story is about their love. Enjoy!) HP/SS, HP/LM, HP/TN, NT/TN, HR/RW, NM/LM (and many others pairs later).
Thank you Suraiyah for beta my story. She is the best.
I’m really sorry for the late posting but I’ve been busy and reogranised my life. Thank you everyone for the reviewed: Winnie2, texasjeanette and Kateri1 .I hope you’ll enjoy this chapter.
Chapter 7: A New Beginning
The ever-bustling streets of London showed nothing out of the ordinary, only the usual hubbub of everyday activities. However, there was an uneasy feeling running through everyone’s hearts, particularly those of the Muggles, as they hastily and furtively went to their destinations and about their business.
It stood to reason that a canary dashing into one of the apartment windows on the fourth floor of an obscure London avenue was nothing more than an ordinary house pet returning to its home. Nevertheless, no other canaries could have travelled as far as this one had. It momentarily swirled around the room as if searching for any danger, before finally landing atop a nearby sofa. Its striking feathers – a beautiful deep-red orange in colour – showed its breed to be none other than a Red Factor Canary.
The crimson canary then did something completely unexpected; it stretched into a human form. The vivid red hair of the tall man that appeared was the only reminder of his Animagi form. The red headed man automatically latched his eyes onto the door, waiting for it to be opened so that he could go home as soon as the business was over. But then his eyes suddenly widened; he had detected a tint of magic being performed beside him. As his head quickly turned aside, he came face to face with none other than his once ago pet, Scabbers.
It seemed that he was not the only unregistered Animagi staying in this room.
“I’ll take this!”
The other Animagi’s hand immediately seized his wand while he was still frozen in surprise. Before he could even think to fight for it, the door burst open as Death Eaters struck inside, paralysing him. The Death Eaters quickly spell bound him in tight ropes, awaiting the order to ship him out.
Scabbers was a short sandy-haired man; his real name was Peter Pettigew, the infamous traitor of the Order of Phoenix, who happened to be idly playing with Ron’s wand at the moment. He bent and stretched the slender piece of wood as if measuring its elasticity, until eventually a cracking sound was heard,
“Oops…did I break your wand?”
He asked innocently, his eggy blue eyes focused on the young man’s reaction instead of the wand he had just fractured.
“But then, you won’t need this where you’re going.”
Pettigrew paused as he waved the wand and amusement lit his eyes as if he were going to immensely enjoy what was coming to the bewildered young man, who had not thus far taken his eyes off his broken wand,
“Take him away, but before that, since you had been such a good master to me once, it is my greatest honour to give you a departing thankyou gift. I’d like to present to you, the traitor.”
Ron’s eyes narrowed at his enemy, not believing that any of the Order would have betrayed their cause, and yet he could feel the doubt of being wrong creeping onto him as he heard footsteps stopping just outside the room.
“Hey, don’t be shy. Come in!”
Pettigrew commanded, his voice bearing a hint of laughter.
Ron looked over to the door just as a bony man walked into the room. His eyes widened with hurt and surprise when he saw whom the other man was. The traitor’s face was blank, shouldering an emotionless expression when he met Ron’s gaze, but his lips twisted into a malicious smirk upon seeing the dismay showing on Ron’s face. The smirk on the traitor’s face was the last thing Ron could remember seeing before he became unconscious.
The Road To Nowhere
Severus’ serene face betrayed none of his irritation. However, many long hours had passed by since he had started walking along this road. He had only walked because he could neither be able to apparate nor use his Pegasus to go to his destination. It vexed him to no end, but not as much as the reason behind the trip. Severus tightened his thin lips without realising it.
‘She should have known better than to go there. Typical Gryffindor, does not consider the trouble and inconvenience they’re causing other people.’
Severus stopped after awhile when he began to become conscious of the fact that he had become lost.
He swore sarcastically under his breath.
‘Just how did I get lost in the first place?’
Severus could not believe it; he had travelled to the secret hideout of the Order of Phoenix many times in the past. As if someone heard what he was thinking, they were laughing out loud. Upon hearing that sound, reflexively Severus spun around to get a glimpse of the mischievous person.
His eyes caught sight of brownish hair and a red scarf before whomever the person was disappeared into the forest. The childish laughter sounded quite familiar but he could not put a face to that sound.
What happened next was quite predictable on how an angry Snape would act in such situation. If Severus Snape had not given into his infamous family temper, he would not have followed the stranger, for it was forbidden to walk outside the twisting road due to the simple reason that no one had ever come back after straying off it.
If Severus had thought he was lost before, he was definitely so now, the forest was eerily silent. He could feel the magic it manifested around him, in the air, the water and even the earth below him. Although he was thoroughly lost, yet Severus began to glimpse a familiarity in the place as he walked further within the forest, deep inside where few dared to venture.
He came upon a stream by which he decided to rest as he ascertained where exactly he was, and whether the memories of his strange dreams were actually his recollection of his own hidden past. Years ago he had tried to prove it otherwise by coming to believe they were nightmares created by his Death Eater activities.
These nightmares had driven him to break down and finally confess to Albus. He had been redeeming himself ever since, hoping it would lessen the sting on his sudden conscience. It had all started on the day when he had woken up from his near death experience. Whatever dark feelings he had had felt before, they had became much more intense, a thousand times worse, starting on that very day.
“Lestrange, if you don’t shut your wife up, then I will!”
Walden McNair warned, gnashing his teeth angrily as he raised his wand and pointed it straight at Bellatrix. It was not a bluff, considering McNair was quite ready to mouth the curse. Bellatrix knew well when to be quiet and cowardly and she pulled her husband in front of her to shield herself from the firing range.
Perhaps it was being trapped in a cave that had triggered their violent natures, causing McNair to turn on his own allies, even though it was only Bellatrix and her usual ranting. There were only two Death Eaters, who despite also being trapped inside the cave, were maintaining their calm appearances. These were none other than Lucius Malfoy and Severus Snape, Voldemort’s favourite servants. Strangely enough, both their appearances were the resemblance of the day and the night, although, Lucius’ angelic face was eclipsed by his friend’s dark formidable, handsome one.
It was the Aurors who had ambushed them. Ironically, it had always been the other way around, but it seemed their enemies have learnt fast. Fairness was not proving an effective tactic during the war. Lucius, in charge of this mission, knew it was time to move on before the group started falling further apart. He had formulated a plan to distract the Aurors.
Lucius waved his hand as a signal for the group to follow his instruction. After casting a spell, as the rest of Death Eaters followed suit. They were all moving slowly out of the cave so that the plan was given time to work.
When they reached the exterior of the cave, they found the conjured serpents had distracted the Aurors as they had expected. This gave them enough time to position themselves before attacking the Aurors. It soon becomes a heated battlefield.
Severus was busy hexing his opponent, but he was not really keen on it. He had once been an enthusiastic Death Eater. Times have changed that, as it also changed his Master into an unrecognisable man from the one he had once worshiped. Nonetheless, he had kept this to himself. Who was he kidding? He hated what he had become more than anyone in the world, but he also had friends among the Death Eaters that he had no wish to betray.
In the corner of his eyes he could see where Lucius stood. His best friend was busy fighting with two Aurors. The battle clearly showed who was dominating, but the flash of light coming from behind Lucius could have changed the balance of power. May be it was an unselfish act that Severus had not performed in years and it certainly was un-Slytherinish behaviour; Severus moved to take the curse for his friend. His body tumbled down onto the ground when the curse struck him. However, most damage was done by the second hit from his own opponent who he happened to have forgotten. His entire body started to burn, the scorching invisible flames spreading rapidly, killing each of his skin cells.
Severus rolled around on the ground, desperately hoping it would stop the inflammation of burning skin. He could hear his screaming echoed because he could not stop the pain. His heart gave out that second, he was ready to enter the other world, when he saw a spirit emerge with his body. It was then he become unconscious.
When he woke up, Severus recognized that he was staying at the Malfoy’s Manor. The purple curtains and red furnished guestroom was only the result of Narcissa’s colour blindness. It seemed that Lucius had put him here to recover from his injures. Severus was annoyed at the house elves, which tiptoed around him and occasionally looked at him strangely. For some reason he felt a slight friendliness towards them and that feeling had not been there before. They would not let him have a mirror whenever he asked for one, and he howled at them until Lucius came in the room for the first time since he had awoken. Lucius turned his eyes away when he saw Severus’ face, as if it were quite unbearable to look at him. Severus felt uncomfortable of the strange silence of his friend and started to speak,
Lucius shook his head proceeding to walk to the bedside. He knew if Severus had not taken the curse he would be the one lying there at the moment and so he cleared his throat before he began conversing with Severus.
“The mediwizard said that you’re lucky to be alive. However, the spells have…damaged your body, which is surprising because it was not supposed to happen that way.”
“I see! I’m well enough Lucius, I would like to speak to the mediwizard now. I want to know about other available options on how my body can be healed.”
” I’m sorry Severus but this is best that can come from me. The best mediwizards in the world have tried every possible charm and healing spell, but none affected your injuries in the slightest. In fact they have caused you more pain and that is why I finally had to throw them out.”
“How much has the curse damaged my body?” Severus asked, shattered from the news,
“Where is my wand?” he then asked dejectedly when he received silence as his only answer.
Lucius immediately threw the wand over, having taken it out of his pocket, but his eyes had not left the ground. Severus cast a spell for a mirror to appear in front of him. He knew somehow his face would be like this, but the horror of seeing it had untold effects through his screams. Magic shimmered from him and destroyed the entire room beyond recognition. Lucius was the only object left standing and that was only because he had been using a powerful shielding charm.
Severus did not let anyone enter the room after that incident; he even shut Regulus out when his lover finally came to visit him. Only the house elves were able to get anywhere near him without being snapped at. Strange memories disturbed his thoughts so that he could not rest properly. His heart cried out in unknown loneliness and pain that seemed to be unbearable, no words were adequate enough to describe the depth of these feelings. Severus Snape was no longer Severus Snape the Death Eater once he left his injured bed.
End Flash Back
Severus began to contemplate two words from his distant memory. He knew now that they were the one truth that could set him free.
‘What is true love?’
He had come to believe many times over hundreds of years that he had finally found his true love, only to be disappointed again and again. Countless of lives he had lived and yet none of them were able to break his curse. There were only two people that Severus Snape had come to love in this life.
The first was a lover. Severus knew now that he did not truly love Regulus but merely loved the idea of being in love. However, it had still hurt him deeply when Regulus left him after seeing his changed appearance. It was not the first time during the course of his live that his lover had left when they saw him, the cursing elf living inside abnormality body. It showed him how shallow love could be, like his had been once.
The second person was the one for whom he had truly fallen, but this realisation had came too late. The feelings he had felt for the boy at his last moments on earth had indicated beyond doubt that it was love, the love his elfin heart had yet to understand. Harry Potter, who would have thought that particular boy would have imprinted deeply into his heart, and not simply Severus’ human one, but also begin to slowly touch his elf’s heart where no one had ventured.
Severus Snape cursed himself quietly; this was not the time for him to indulge on Harry’s memories. Severus sighed sadly and extracted his flute from of his robes. He played the flute whenever his emotions became unbearable, for only his music was able to soothe his pain. Severus was not able to do so as often as he wanted because he had learnt his lesson well in the early days.
He remembered a particular incident of a foolish village girl he had come across, who had fallen for the melody of his flute and she had pined away to death in the end. At the time he had believed she was his true love, but he still lived inside the human body his presence occupied at the time when the girl’s spirit slipped away into another world. This only made him guiltier of his carelessness, for it had killed another mortal. He knew then what his mother meant, it was not of simpleton loves and he chided himself for the arrogant assumption that the girl truly loved him instead of his sweet music.
His music this time was not of his sorrowful state, but instead it spoke solemnly of the longing love for Harry, the one he had come to love, and the unspoken of what could have been if Harry did not die. It also hinted of the fear that Harry might not reciprocate his unrequited love.
Road To Nowhere, North Entrance
“Harriet, slow down, please!”
Neville was worn-out quickly, even though he had been leaning on Ginny as they journeyed on the road. Ginny grinded her teeth to bear his heavy weight, as well as the aching of her body, because she wanted nothing more than to see her family again. She wanted to get there quickly, for it had been so long since she last had an embrace from her parents and that was what she had missed most of all – the warmth of her family. Harriet’s motive was not the same as hers, but she too hurried to get there as she allowed her aching physical pain to lure away her emotional one.
“I’m sorry Neville, but we must hurry, it is not safe out here especially as the sun will be setting in an hour. We need to get to a gazebo before we can be able to rest for the night.”
Harriet turned to look at them. She noticed Ginny’s wane face and knew it was time to take over in helping Neville to walk. She strode back to them and took hold of Neville before Ginny let go. A few minutes later when they moved off the bended part of the road they saw the gazebo located not far ahead. They all sighed with relief, pleased that nothing had happened during their journey. When they arrived, Ginny’s tiredness gave out and she collapsed onto the ground at the entrance of the building, bringing both of her companions to a state of deathly panic. After a thorough examination, they were sure that Ginny was all right, but extremely exhausted.
“She’s just too tired.”
Harriet commented, as she settled Ginny onto a bench that she had transfigured into a small bed and resized a blanket back to its original size to cover her friend up.
“Eat this Neville, it will help you to revive your strength.”
She smiled warmly and tucked her brother in as well on another bench-bed she made, but only after he finished his meal. Although exhausted as well, Harriet chose to watch the sunset. She truly feared for the road they were travelling on. No wonder it had become the secret hide out of the Order of Phoenix. Harriet sighed,
‘No one in his or her right mind would have chosen this place.’
This was one of the times when she doubted the sanity of her grandfather. The area was a sacred place that the only path or road that went through it was called the Road to Nowhere and yet it did not guarantee that the traveller was able to safely arrive to the other side.
No one was able to explain what danger was held within this forbidden place or why the ancient road was called what it was, but many have disappeared upon this road, never to be found again. The most fearful thing to a wizard/witch was that you could not perform spells once you were inside the area. The only places that you were able to do so were the gazebos, which were located aside the road.
Many researchers had shown that the gazebos were built where there were less magicfield of the sacred ground, which may explain why they were still able to perform magic within these buildings. Magic was part of a wizard/witch’s life and to become defenceless without it, none would not dare to cross the road unless in desperation. Since no one used the roads regularly, over time maps of the roads had been destroyed, until only four copies had remained in the world, and one of them happened to be in the Dumbledore family heirlooms.
Unfortunately, Harriet who had thought she was safe inside the building did not once consider that her temptation was to be the cause of her downfall. As it started to get dark, her eyes began drifting close as she slowly glided off to sleep, when entrancing music suddenly soared over her. Although the tone was much different this time, Harriet had no doubt it was the same player.
Unable to resist the urge to find the musician, Harriet left her safety nest to search for her love. If Ginny and Neville had not been lost in their dreamless sleep, they would surely have snapped her out of her enchantment.
Harriet meandered through the forest until she came to a moor hill and it was only then that she came to her senses, even though the melody had long vanished from her hearing range. She began to berate her foolishness. She sat down on a rock, clutching her wand for protection but knowing that it was useless here.
She heard childish laughter from behind her and in a flash the sound now came from before her and then a body shimmered out of thin air.
A childish voice exclaimed aloud, almost mockingly. It kept giggling and Harriet began to make out the intruder. The intruder had the body of boy about twelve years old, yet his face was mid-aged, though his clear stormy eyes plainly showed that he was far older. The navy-blue cloak he wore hid the robe underneath, but the dark red scarf around his neck stood out. Brownish hairs escaped from under a high hat that was out of fashion even by wizarding standards.
Harriet returned the greeting, hoping the boy was friendly but some how she doubted that.
“What luck! I did not think anyone would fall for that trick.”
He grinned like a kid that had just been given lollies as an unexpected treat. Harriet felt further threatened. She stepped back away and ready to bode from the child. She knew it was silly to ask, but she had to know,
“Yeah, I heard the melody a few hours ago in the forest. It sounded great, though it was sad and idiotically romantic in my opinion, but I recorded it and played it just now. Amusing isn’t it? Didn’t think a witch would fall for it.”
Harriet knew she was in trouble; the boy’s face was now purely glinting with an evil smirk before he continued,
“It has been a long time since anyone lingered on my territory, where I’m patrolling.”
“Sorry but I need to get back, my friends are waiting for me.”
Harriet began to run for her life, hoping the strange boy would let her leave. No such luck, for he was on her tail and appeared to be playing a cat and mouse game with her. Suddenly the sound of horse hooves trembled the ground as a hand swept her to a stop before the body of a stallion clearly materialized to stand between her and the maniac boy. The boy looked alarmed over the knightly figure appearing before them.
“Fatis! Stay out of this, it is nothing of your concern,” he demanded.
“Good evening, good Amadan. Please do introduce me to this fair maiden.”
A pleasant voice inside the armour was greeting the boy and politely gave him the command for the introduction. However, Amadan blatantly ignored the request,
“Hmm…go away you goody two shoes …”
Harriet was quick to her feet and pleaded,
“Please help me! I’m lost. I just want to go back to the main road where my friends are waiting for me.”
“She’s lying. I demand that you go on your journey. You’ve no jurisdiction here or over this matter.”
“My dear fellow, pardon me but I am afraid I am quite unable to do so. My chivalry and oath demand that I rescue the damsel in distress.”
Fatis interrupted the sneering boy. The boy was continuing to fume while jumping up and down displaying his tantrum while he listened to the knight’s winding speech.
“You’ve no right to interfere! I’ve permission to do kill any mortal who dares to wander onto the fairy haunt.”
Amadan protested adamantly like a child deprived from his toys. However it was a lost cause to Fatis, who had vowed to protect the innocent and was deaf to the boy’s pleading.
“I have detected the maiden’s aura as pure white and that means she is innocent of your accusation. If you continue still with this nonsense, I shall take this matter to your Queen’s court. I too will personally report this incident of your unbecoming behaviour with my King Oberon, be gone, fairy fool!”
Fatis immediately took up his lance, pointing it at Amadan, prepared to carry out his threat. Even Amadan, known as the fairy fool and a jester of the court, knew it was better to take leave than face the consequence of accepting this challenge that he had no hope to win.
Amadan immediately glared at them before abruptly vanishing out of sight.
“Good evening! May I enquire as to why you enter the fairy haunt, especially as it is the Litha day tomorrow.”
“Litha…Oh Litha’s day! You celebrate Litha Day as well.”
She stated surprisedly as she worked out whom exactly they were. Paling slightly when she remembered what Fatis had called the child.
‘Amadan! Merlin, I could have died if he had not come along.’
Harriet heard a chuckle from within the steel helmet,
“We always have done so, in fact it has been you mortals that have been following our custom. I would dearly love to talk to you; it has been a rather long time since I last have spoken to a human. However, you must leave to return to the road if you wish to remain alive before sunrise. The others of my kind care not much for humans. It is unfortunate we meet this time of the year, with tomorrow happening to be the only day in a thousand years that fairy are able to travel freely in the lands.”
Harriet only gasped as she digested the information. He searched the surroundings before pointing to the west,
“Walk that way, you will be back onto the road in no time and I feel no magic signature of my kind active there.”
Fatis turned back to the young girl and took a closer look at her. There was surprisingly powerful magic binding the girl. He wondered what it was, but he had no time to break it to satisfy his curiosity. He also had the peculiar feeling they would meet again, which seemed most unlikely.
“Goodbye, safe speed.”
After bidding farewell to her rescuer and thanking him gratefully, Harriet trekked for some time until she heard a call for help from nearby. Out of her good heart, as well as curiosity, she decided to investigate. Harriet arrived at the shrub to find an injured cub, the young wolf crying in pain. She was glad that she did not ignore its calls for help.
“Can I help?”
Harriet offered her hand, few of the animals allowed humans to be near them, even if she was a Faunspeaker. The cub winced from pain as he pulled his paw out, showing his injury. It was shred by a sharp branch piercing through the young skin as blood smudged out of the wound. Knowing the pain that was going to come Harriet tightened her lips as she said,
“Hold on, this will hurt.”
Harriet efficiently pulled the branch out as fast but as gently as she could. The young witch poured the bottled water she carried over the wounds to sterilize possible germs. She then fastened hastily the bandages over the injuries – it was the torn fabric from her sleeve – to stop the bleeding. She gave a smile and fell back on the ground exhausted mainly from worry; it was the first time she had done this without magic. It was far more complicated than the simple spell she had been used to before.
“Thank you, Faunspeaker!”
“You’re welcome. No don’t lick the bandage, let it heal by itself before taking it off. Is there anyone to help you to pull the bandage free when your skin heals?”
Harriet frowned, wondering how the cub would look after himself. Shouldn’t his mother be somewhere? She gave the cub a smile when she noticed others animals gathering around,
“I can help him, don’t worry Faunspeaker.”
Another cub slightly older spoke out loud, as he moved forward to snug his friend’s head.
“It’s a long time since I’ve seen a Faunspeaker.”
A small squirrel commented from a hole, and on the pine tree in front of them, a snort greeted the statement. Harriet made it out to be from an owl, which was now hooting on the branch,
“There have been no Faunspeakers passing here for the last seven hundreds years. I rather doubt you’ve been around that long, Squirrel!”
Harriet could not help but laugh; sometimes listening to animals could be quite entertaining. She turned to asked the owl where she was and how far away from the main road, since owls were the only animals that seemed to have intelligence enough to answer her question without going off the tangent. She found that she needed half an hour walking west before she could reach the road and at least another hour on the road before she returned to the gazebo where she left Neville and Ginny.
“Goodbye and thanks sister.”
She bowed to the owl and kneeled down beside the cub giving his fur a little ruffle to say goodbye before departing.
“Take care of the injured young one.”
As she was about to leave the area, the chipping of two nearby robins caught her attention.
“… just sitting there. Pity he won’t survive after tonight… to come here at the time like this.”
“Brother! Whom are you speaking of?”
“Ah, a Faunspeaker! Why should we tell you?”
“Yeah, you’ve just saved one of our predators, foolish human.”
His companion sneered at her, standing bravely upon the highest branch, fearing she would reach for him if he moved any closer.
“I would have done the same thing if you had been injured. Please tell me, it’s important. A life is more important than this juvenile gibbering.”
“You better answer her now or I’ll have you for my dinner.”
A deep roaring voice threatened, as a creature swooped down onto them, and the two robins squeaked when they saw it was a black blue-hawk ready to pounce on them for her next meal.
“It’s south of here, behind the stream on the mountain side.”
They responded in unison and flew off the branch hastily to get away from the hawk.
“Thank you sister.”
“You’re welcome, child. But, are you sure want to search for this stranger? You only have a few hours until sunrise. If you have not found him when you reach there, flee immediately to the west to get to the main road. Promise me child! I hate the thought of losing you, it is rare nowadays to meet a Faunspeaker.”
Harriet nodded and continued on her journey. She has been warned numerous times of facing uncertain death if she did not get out of this place by the coming morning. Harriet tiredly marched on; knowing that time was essential for her life, as well as that of the stranger.
She was climbing over rocky lands, hiking around thick forest trees that concealed the world around them. The mysterious sense of the place becoming alive only enhanced her fear of the unknown. Each step she took forward got harder, as if she were being dragged back by a stronger force, but she kept going somehow. Maybe deep inside she had a feeling that the other person who was lost within this forest was Lucius and it was this motivation that helped her to carry on.
When she reached her destination, Harriet searched for any moving forms but she found none. Fearing that she had come to late, she sighed and began heading west as she was told to get out as soon as possible. She immediately slumped forward and tripped over when her foot hit a solid body. A sleepy voice called out the moment she fell over.
Harriet’s face turned colourless when she recognised the voice she had heard, wondering if by any chance she mistook the tone, but she knew she was not that lucky. Forgetting her pain from having fallen, she moved to the light, revealing herself before she noticed she had automatically obeyed the voice.
“Oh it’s you!”
Severus’ tones have always managed to get a rise in her, so that she could not resist returning the favour as she insolently turned to the Potion Master,
“Disappointed! Were you waiting for someone else to rescue you?”
“You! Rescue me!”
“Bugger off! I don’t need your help. Play your hero complex game somewhere else.”
“Miss Velius, your rattling is giving me the most awful headache.”
“ME! I DID NOT RATTLE!”
“If you have not noticed, you’re waking the entire neighbourhood with your shrieks.”
Harriet could not take any more insults from him when she had tried so hard to get here. She threw her hands up in the air as if giving up and started to walk off, not really caring where she was going as long as it was as far away as possible from this impossible man.
‘Why can’t we not even have a normal conversation for once? I mean what about hello; it has been a long time since I saw you etc. Huh? Who am I kidding, it’s the greasy… ‘
“Where are you going?”
“Far away from you, git.”
Harriet murmured so that only she was able to hear.
“Bloody hell! Stop Velius!”
Harriet ignored the warning from Severus as she continued to walk, when she suddenly felt a hand pulling her back against a solid torso. Harriet’s heart bumped so fast against her ribs, even more so than the last time she had spoken to him, and in panic she struggled hard to get away from Severus’ clutches. They were both too busy to notice the slipping of the land in a landslide slide and abruptly fell off along with pieces of rock. They crashed onto hard ground a few seconds later but not far off the cliff; the impact brought a shock jolting through them both.
Harriet could feel her body throbbing with the bruises procured from the fall. It was only then that she realised she was still wrapped around Severus’ body. She knew by the hard breathing of the Potion Master that he had not gotten off lightly from the fall, and maybe even had more injuries from their fall since he had used his body to reduce the collision force that hammered her own body when they hit onto the floor. It mellowed her heart just thinking about it. Harriet may have been boorish, but she knew she owed the man and felt she needed to thank him, and so swallowing her resentment, she began,
“Thank you, are you alright?”
Severus did not answer, only grunting, as he pulled both of them back against the wall.
“It is a long way down.”
“How do you know?”
“I have seen it before the night set.”
Silence stretched until Harriet spoke again as fear crept onto her,
“Did you try to warn me about the cliff?”
“Did it take you this long to deduce what happened?”
“Please spare me, your grovel is quite unbecoming.”
“I did not…can we not have a decent conversation? After all …”
“Nothing! Is there anyway we could climb up?”
“No, I’m a Potion Master not a climber Miss Velius.”
“We need to get out of this place before sunrise.”
“We’re stuck here, if you’ve not noticed, and the least of our problems is sunrise. Of course miracles do happen, so you never know.”
Severus smiled almost teasingly, his eyes glinting with a strange light and Harriet had a feeling he knew more about this place than she. Harriet turned away and as she looked up to the sky, it reminded her of Albus’ will. She began to cry stiffly, trying not to make a sound, especially not in front of this man. However, Severus was a well trained spy, he could detect the snivelling from the crouching body beside him. He did not know why, but he gently drew the girl into his arms, once again wrapping them around her. Harriet did not turn away from the comfort that was given to her either, in fact she moved closer, snuggling against the warmth that was his body and sobbing louder when she could no longer conceal her anguish.
Severus was struck with disbelief after discovering a bit of information Harriet told him between her whimpering, not really knowing what she had unconsciously revealed. Finally thoroughly exhausted, she fell asleep in his arms. Severus tenderly brushed the unshed tears off her sleeping face. Quietly pulling his cloak to cover them both and leaning his chin to rest onto the girl’s head, he too fell asleep.
Far away, a powerful being watched the sleeping couple and smiled secretively. It was after all a new beginning she had been weaving for them.
Chapter 9: Chapter 8: The Ley Lines I
Still Waters Run Deep
Warning and all the disclamations is in prologue.
AN: Thank you for Mersang beta this story and this chapter.
Mersang is also working through the earlier chapters of this story and the newer chapters, so bare with us.
Chapter 8: The Ley Lines I
The sunlight is playing across Severus and Harriet’s faces. It wants to wake them from their resting, through it is unable to penetrate an invisible protection blanket covering them from the night before. The sun rises to very high point on the eastern sky before the couple are roused.
Harriet is the first one to open her eyes. She hears strangest resonances. It’s lovely, but not enough to tempt her to wake up and move away from the warmth that is encircling her body. However, the sounds becomes clearer, insisting not to be ignored.
The melody is soft and lyrical, rather like an angel singing. Slowly, she takes a peak to see who or what is trying to get her attention. There is no one in sight, and the music is withering away into nothingness; she does, however, seeing the most amazing vision and would jump if she were not snuggling up against Severus.
Harriet rubs her eyes, wondering if she is still dreaming. Her movements have woken Severus from his slumber; his peaceful face contorts into scowls, as is natural on him. Harriet is still mystified and in awe of her surrounding. She does not notice her companion has moved away from her the second he realised how inappropriate their positions were last night.
The morning has somehow vanished the dark gloomy forest and plain wet moor of last night into a magnificent landscape. Flowers bloom everywhere. She recognises a few flowering plants, though the rest are strikingly unusual; it all seems to be unearthly. The most amazing are those that she recognises as supposed to bloom in different seasons, but unbelievably in fully blossom at the same time, right in front of her. She knows this is not wizarding magic; they have yet able to achieving such magnitude power as this.
The scents of the flowers are extraordinary, blending into each other with an unexpectedly sweet serenity of fragrances. The green grasses and many plants are spread across the land, giving it an incredible lushness.
The forest is colourful; the trees leaves are ever changing into different seasons every few minutes, before starting the whole processed again. The forests are alive before their very eyes.
‘Somehow I am very glad it is he that I’m sharing this with,’ Harriet thinks, though she has yet to discover the significance of her feelings.
Harriet finally tears her gaze from the heavenly scenery to look at Severus. The scowl stuck on his face has marred him, making him look older and more bitter than he should. Harriet itches to touch his face and smoothing the scowl away. However, her hand freezes when hazel-green eyes meet with ebony. She is astonished to sees Severus reflecting on the scenery, with a strange expression of longing and contentment.
The shining depth of emotions she is witnessing seems to be unreal on this man’s face. She is starting to see him in the new light; it stirrs a long forgotten sentiment. She is drowning in the deep pools of his eyes and blinks when Severus lips started to move.
“Miss Velius – Miss Velius…”
“Sorry, I …”
Harriet tries to think up an excuse for being caught staring, but her thoughts are blank. She blushes and turns away to regain her customary regal bearing, and does not look back at him until her heartbeats slow.
‘This won’t do! You’re not fickle. Why are you thinking this man in this manner? Especially when you should have been thinking of Lucius instead?’
“Sorry; I did not catch what you were saying?”
“I believe last night, you told me about Dumbledore being arrested by Nott; is it true?”
She nods in confirmation, remembering why she came here. Silence descends upon them as both contemplate this troubling event. Harriet is the first to break the tension. She has never been good at dealing with negativities.
“Eh, what do you think could have caused this?” She points to the landscape, trying to steer away from depressing thoughts.
Severus shrugs his broad shoulders carelessly and returns to mulling over whatever he was thinking of before. Harriet bites her nail; maybe she should be more direct.
“Hmm, it looks like we going to stays here for a while. Could we talk?” She succumbs to the need to know him better. Severus arches his eyebrow slightly and sneers.
“I don’t do small talk!”
Harriet looks at the man as if he is mad.
“But one must, at least, pretend to subscribe to the civilised conversation. It is expected of a man to talk to his companion.”
Severus looks down imperiously at the child, who dares to lecture him on social conduct. He is not annoyed, but disturbed, by the familiarity. Who has girl have been reminding him of? Suddenly the sight of green eyes jolts him awake; they are the same shade as Harry’s were.
‘No, Harry is gone!’
Severus is lost at what to do with the girl. He shrugs it off and in his defensiveness he mentions his father, whom he has not spoken since he left home.
“I’m not sure you are correct. My father has never talked to anyone that he didn’t care for.” Implied in this is why Severus was so reserved in character.
However, it was not meant to taken literally. Maybe it due to the sadistic relationship that they had shared thus far, but Harriet believes the man’s words were meant to drop a hint.
‘Prick – if he meant he didn’t care for me then he should’ve just said so,’ she fumes, and insolently replies, “I suppose that explains why you turned out so well!”
Her tones once again setting him off; Severus face turns red with anger. No one dares to speak to him that way. He ignores the inner voice that whispers defiantly, ‘One did, once.’
“You’ve no manners whatsoever, Miss Velius. I’ve warned you before to be careful if you wanted to live to ripe old age. Heed me well, child! Those who did not are long gone.”
“Did you just threaten me?”
“No, I’m just stating facts.”
They hold a staring contest, each one’s eyes full of loathing, and Harriet, in the end, is the first to back down. She gives a sigh and looks away, but the beautiful scene does not removed the sting in her heart. She feels uneasy; it seems she has taken another step away from the man.
‘Why do I need his approval? Why am I thirsting for his gentleness, like he showed me last night?’
Confused, she calls to him.
She looks up when she receives no answer from Severus; his black gaze is steadily pouring over her. The impact of deadly stare is like a stiletto ready to kill, yet does not make her fear him; in fact, the feelings are opposite. It shocks her to her very core when she is able to give a name to that feeling.
‘Desire! I desire him! How sick am I?’
Gazebo on the Road to Nowhere
Ginny and Neville feel refreshed from a good rest. This turns to dread when they discover Harriet is nowhere nearby. There is no sign of struggle, or a note stating why she had leaved them. They have no idea what to do, except to continue to Order headquarters and ask for help there.
They hide a code message before departing to the next gazebo, and are surprised to see a figure already there, standing inside the safe haven, as they approach. They cannot believe their luck and Ginny is ready to scold her friend. However, it is not Harriet; it is her future sister-in-law.
“Oh, Ginny, Neville, what are you doing here?” she cries, embracing them both.
It has been years since she set eyes on these two. Now they have grown up and entered adulthood. Neville quickly relates their story and that Harriet, Albus’ granddaughter, is missing.
“Sorry, but I didn’t see anyone passing,” Hermione admits regretfully. “But I have a feeling she is alright. I’m on my way to headquarters, too. Ma be the Order will be able to help.”
“I heard you that you’re with Professor Snape. How is he?” Neville enquires warily. In truth he did not care about the answer. It brings back bad memories that Neville had buried for the last few years.
“Yes, I am Professor Snape’s Assistant. I left his manor yesterday, because I’ve not heard from Ron for a month. I’ve been worried about his mission.”
“Ron?” Ginny heart tightens; it seems bad news comes in bulk.