Author's Note: This is my first story to be published on . Criticism welcome. No hate please.
Chapter 1: Harry Falls Into The Spider's Web.
Summary: After mispronouncing Diagon Alley, second-year Harry Potter is thrown into The Spider's main gambling den under the magical part of London. After a brief and tense moment, The Spider recognizes the boy. After a brief discussion, The Spider sends him on his way.
Harry Potter coughed and hacked up the soot leftover from his first Floo trip. He sputtered and spat the last of the ash before he looked up around himself only to freeze at the number of eyes staring at him. Close to around thirty beings, all of whom were clearly not human, remained frozen around the five tables with a mixture of glittering material and cards sitting atop them. All of them stared at him.
"H-Hello?" Harry said, his voice high from fear. This one word made several of the patrons screech and pull out knives and what looked like high tech pistols from their rough cloaks and gear and point them at him. Harry yelped in fear and scrambled back until his rear slammed against the wall.
A sharp roar broke through the screeches and the group froze. They parted down the middle and made way for a figure that passed them. A white spider symbol stared at Harry from the beings stomach as its four eyes studied him. A sharp bark of a laugh escaped the creature before it seemed to notice the weapons being pointed at Harry. "We have a guest amongst us, boys. Put those guns down." The crowd hesitated for a moment before a few hisses from the back of the room drew everyone's attention to three smaller guards holding staffs with sparking blades. The guns disappeared after that. The creature offered Harry one of his hands as the other beings returned to their tables. Harry cautiously took it and he was hauled to his feet with a strength that contradicted the large belly the creature boasted. "So what brings the Boy-Who-Lived to my corner of the Tangled Shore?"
"F-Floo travel, sir," Harry said. His uncertain tone made the creature look at him more intently before a huff escaped its mask.
"You mispronounced the destination, didn't you?" At Harry's nod, the creature snorted and patted the boy on the shoulder. Harry nearly wilted at the force behind the pat. Its shoulder pats were on par with Hagrid's! "None of this 'sir' business. If you wish to know who just kept you from being a Fallen's leftovers tomorrow, you may call me 'The Spider,' understood?" The Spider asked. Harry nodded quickly. A laugh boomed from The Spider again and he turned around. "Follow me, boy." Harry did so as The Spider weaved through the tables of what Harry now knew as Fallen, all of whom eyed the boy as he passed. One of them sharpened his knife on a piece of bone while it stared at him. They exited the room to a walkway with a large glass window that reached up and over them. Harry's breath caught as he saw what lay outside.
A large cavern stretched out farther than he could see, with several spires of rock that stretched from roof to floor and a purple mist hanging down below them. Several bulbous metal buildings clung to the spires, their hulls lined with lights that blinked green and red.
"Beautiful, is it not?" Harry jumped at The Spider's voice, which had dropped in volume as he joined Harry at the window. "This is the home of mine and my boys. We've been here for years ever since Lily Evans helped us set up this place."
"My mother?" Harry asked. The Spider turned back to him sharply, his eyes now squarely on Harry. The boy shrunk in the Fallen's gaze. The Spider eventually huffed with a nod.
"Now that I really look at you, I see it. You have her eyes." He said. He motioned for Harry to follow and the boy quickly did. "Lily Evans did my boys a great service nearly thirty years ago and we owe her our lives."
"What did she do?" Harry asked as they passed a few guards, all of whom nodded to The Spider before they stared at Harry.
"Back in the last war, my boys and I weren't seen in the most favorable light." The Spider paused as they arrived at a seemingly solid wall that split a moment later and revealed an elevator. They boarded and the elevator began to ascend. "Put simply, we played both sides of the war. We stayed out for the most part except for when we could profit the most." The elevator stopped and they exited.
"So, you're criminals," Harry said. The Spider laughed at that.
"I prefer the term businessmen." They stepped through another door and came to a large open area with a throne in the center. The Spider walked to it and fell back onto it. A brown blanket with his sigil was dropped over his legs by a nearby Fallen, who The Spider dismissed with a wave of his top right hand. The Spider leaned forward, his eyes narrowed at Harry. "You have not seen the blatant bigotry the Ministry has towards non-humans. Come back when you have seen even a fraction of what my kind has experienced."
"And what is your kind exactly? Some species of magical spider?" Harry's own eyes were narrowed and his face was flushed with anger. The Spider laughed hard at Harry's question. His laughter accompanied several slaps to his throne's arm, the metal groaning with every strike.
"Magical, he says," The Spider said, his voice caught in a pitch of laughter. He pounded his throne's arm for another moment before he relaxed. "No, no. You're thinking too small." He raised a talon and pointed up.
Harry stared at the raised digit before the coin dropped. His mouth fell open as his eyes widened.
"You are beginning to understand now." The Spider chuffed, his belly jumped with the movement. "My kind is not from this world. We are Eliksni, we are Fallen."
"Th-That's insane." The Spider nodded at Harry's words, his hands laced across his stomach as he lay back in his throne. "How have you remained hidden all these years?"
"Your mother, for one." The Spider sighed, his eyes turned away from Harry. "Shortly after you were born in… '80?" At Harry's nod, The Spider continued, "She came to me and my boys. I nearly had her killed on the spot outside the cave system we had taken shelter in, but I stopped when she came in alone. She even gave her wand up to bring a proposition to me and the other leaders of the Eliksni." He pointed out a nearby window. "She gave us this location. Helped us ward it against outsiders." He looked back at Harry. "Clearly those wards need to be readjusted." Harry shrunk at his words but The Spider shrugged at the sight. "Not your fault." His upper right arm reached around his throne and came back with a small drone, its eight points trembling in his hand before The Spider tossed it to Harry. "Hold onto that Ghost for me, will you? I have a feeling it may come in… useful one day." He stabbed a hidden button on his throne. "Brivi, get your scrawny hide in here and escort Harry Potter to the Knockturn Alley entrance. Make sure he gets back to Diagon Alley." He released the button and looked at Harry again.
"Why are you helping me? Your people seem to want nothing to do with me." Harry asked.
"Were you anyone else, that'd be the case. Except that you're Lily Evans child. We owe her too much for that." The Spider said and reclined in his throne. A side door opened and a Fallen scurried in. His spikes rattled as he ran on all six limbs. "This is Brivi, he will see you to the surface safely." Spider shifted his gaze to Brivi. "He know what'll happen if he lets anything happen to Lily Evans son." Brivi twitched at the name and nodded quickly. The Fallen bodyguard turned to Harry and jerked his head towards the door. Harry followed after one last look at The Spider. "Please do not speak of this encounter, Harry Potter. My people have done much to keep this place safe. It'd be a shame if everything came crashing down around our ears."
The doors hissed shut and The Spider was alone in his throne room. He scratched his jaw a few moments then pressed the hidden button on his throne.
"Arrha, dig up anything you can on Harry Potter's living conditions. I want to know as much as I can about our new friend."
"You think he will come back, the Spider?" Arrha said in Eliksni through the intercom.
The Spider huffed with a smile behind his mask. "We've piqued his interest by mentioning his parents. He'll find his way back. Maybe not today, but he'll return. The lost and abandoned always find a way back to the Tangled Shore."