Lord of Light and Darkness
Life's a Prophecy
The Rise Of The D.A.
Standard disclaimers apply.
Chapter Beta'd by: RPMcMurphy from 'Perfect Imagination
Warning: corporal punishment in the bottom part of this chapter, for those who don't like this for whatever reasons, you might want to skip it.
#Meanwhile, twenty or so years later in the future, one day after the Burrow Incident.
It was night time, three days after the recent Burrow incident. Ever so slowly, Ginny woke up from her deep slumber.
Gradually opening her eyes, she found herself in what looked like the familiar environment of the Hogwarts hospital wing.
The first question which came to her mind was what had actually happened.
Her second thought was whether she was dead. Not a bad question to ask, considering what had happened; however, she squashed that thought just as quickly as it had come.
After all, she was in the hospital wing, wasn't she?
Surely that could only mean that she was still alive, if only barely.
After all why would she be in the hospital wing if she were dead.
It didn't make any sense… or did it?
Surely Heaven couldn't be that cruel to her…would it?
Perhaps this was Hell.
Her own personal Hell.
An eternity in the Hospital wing?
Nah… that would be too kind for Hell.
Surely Hell would be worse.
She found her self thinking back through the last few minutes of her life, before she had lost consciousness, and wondered what actually had happened in those last few minutes.
Was everybody else still alright?
Were her parents still alive?
What about Bill?
As far as she knew her mother had been in the house just before the attack.
What happened to her?
Was she the only one left now?
She hoped not.
Those thoughts were racing through her anxious mind as the infirmary door opened and Poppy Pomfrey, the school matron entered the room.
"Ah, thank goodness you're still with us, Ms. Weasley. We were already beginning to believe you wouldn't make it. That was quite a fall you had back there," the nurse said kindly, the moment she noticed her patient was awake.
"Oh," was all Ginny managed to say, weakly, as she looked up at the nurse. She could see signs of strain, tiredness and sorrow coming from the normally cheerful matron.
She really didn't know what to think, let alone say anymore. Should she be happy to still be alive? Was there anything left to be happy about…any reason for her left…to still want to be alive?
"I mean honestly, when that three story house of yours collapsed nobody expected anybody to survive…with over…oh…"
"…Oh dear…shh…shh…it's ok now," Poppy said as she saw Ginny begin to cry.
The moment had obviously become too much for her.
Moving a few steps closer until she was beside her, Poppy sat down on Ginny's bed and put her arms around her.
"Shh…its ok…you're safe now…," she said again, believing that Ginny was suffering from post-traumatic stress and was in shock over what had happened. Which of course she was.
For the next few minutes Ginny simply let her tears fall into Poppy's robes as she tried to assimilate just what had happened to her.
Poppy let a few tears fall herself as she thought back through the terrible last few weeks.
She had lost more patients in the last few weeks, than she had ever lost in her whole life, as a school matron…or even as a medi-trainee back while training at St. Mungo's during the last few months of the first war.
Thinking back, she remembered the last time she had felt anyway as close as she was feeling now. That was around the time when the Potters had died…or before that, when three students had died, one after the other during one particular year, about twenty years ago.
True, only one of the three had been directly in her care at the time, but still…
First had been a boy named Peter…
She couldn't remember his surname anymore.
Poppy remembered he had been one of those quiet students, always in the shadows, never really stood out much.
Even now she still wasn't too sure what had really happened to him.
Thinking back she thought he had been killed while on his way home, but she just wasn't sure anymore.
Somehow she felt sure she had seen him walking down the corridor, that horrible day, just a few hours prior to his alleged death. At a time when, according to the facts, he wasn't supposed to have even been in the school at all, but already at home.
Then there had been a boy named Severus Snape.
Now he, she remembered, had been in her care at the time.
The one that had a good hand with potions, she remembered solemnly. Oh how much she could use them now. These days she was always so desperately short in supply.
Quite a few of her recent patients had died because she had not had enough or the right potion to give them.
In fact, just a few weeks ago she even had had to withhold a potion from a dying patient so that she could simply save another….another with a better chance of survival.
How she had hated herself for that…how she still hated herself for that…but it had to be done.
Now thinking about Snape, Poppy felt sure that, had he managed to survive that fateful day he could possibly have become a great potions master, probably one of the greatest, but alas, it had not been to be.
The final one of the trio to die had been a witch named Trixie Black…no…Tricksy Woo …No!
...it was something different…like Bell…a…
Oh, she just couldn't remember anymore.
Either way, that one had been murdered, while on a Hogsmeade trip.
Yes… she could remember that year well. Too well. Well, who wouldn't? It was a rough year.
It was also the famous year when the Dragon house, fifth house of Hogwarts, had been born… and the year of that infamous Hogsmeade day the school had been practically overrun with Aurors and when that dreadful cruel man Madhog…no wait…Maddogs…er…Dox, took over the school.
Even now she shuddered when thinking about that man's deeds.
That man had been a real tyrant, even worse than Umbridge had ever been, during the last year.
Hmm…wasn't that also the year when a former colleague of hers, Thornton and a former student called…
"Ma'am," said Ginny, effectively breaking Poppy out of her musings.
Poppy shook herself from her thoughts to concentrate on her current charge.
This was no time to show weaknesses…not now…not ever… not while she was still alive and kicking, matron of the school.
"You alright?" Ginny asked, looking worriedly at the nurse. She had noticed the tears on her face. "You were somewhat spaced out a second ago."
"Oh… yes dear… just thinking about the past… the good old years before the first war," she said. A peaceful sort of look came into her eyes which quickly changed into a look of sorrow as she once again inadvertently thought about what had happened to that world since then.
Ginny sighed. "That must have been a wonderful time," she said, just before halting and looking away again, fresh pools of tears threatening to come from her puffy red eyes as she thought about those now long gone blissful years.
The years before Voldemort. The years before the first big campaign. The last few years before the killing really started. The years before… her Harry had died.
Even though she hadn't been around at the time, she found herself longing for those days.
Oh how much she wished for those days. Anything would be better than this.
Poppy, seeing that Ginny was about to cry again, thought it best to stop there and leave her in peace for a while.
Slowly she disentangled herself from her charge and started to move away.
Just before she reached the infirmary door she halted as Ginny asked one last question.
"Please, I need to know…did anybody else …you know…"
Ginny simply couldn't make herself say the last few words.
This was the part she hated the most about her job.
The bringing of bad news.
Thinking it best to get it out of the way she spoke.
"I'm sorry… you're the last one left."
With those last few words Poppy left the room.
The last thing she heard before the door closed was a loud heart breaking, devastatingly, defeated wail which originated from the west end of the ward.
#Meanwhile twenty years in the past, Room of Relief or Utmost Pain, Dragon HQ, (formerly known as the Room of Requirement)
"MOVE MOVE MOVE, you slimy pieces of flobberworm crap," came Harry's voice from the front of the group.
"I don't know how you expect to duel with that attitude, move before I make you wish you did," he shouted as he led his fellow Dragons and a few students from the other houses on their run, laps around the room. A room which was at the moment a respectable two kilometers is length.
"Will he ever shut up," wheezed Sirius from somewhere in the middle of the pack of exhausted students as they passed the starting line for the umpteenth time.
"The question I want to ask is when will we stop?" asked Remus from beside him. He was very red in the face and puffing heavily.
"Shh… be quiet and save your breath for running, or else he'll make us run until midnight…or later," said Lily in between her own tired breaths. From the group she was the only one of the trio who seemed to be in any sort of good shape, which was probably due to the frequent runs she made herself do during the summer.
"I don't care what he says if he doesn't stop…soo-ufff…OW!…damn it, where did that stone come from?" Sirius swore as he tripped over a rock which just seemed to appear out of nowhere.
"All right there, lads… take a two minute break and then we will start learning a few new spells," came Harry's amused voice from the front.
"Oh thank heavens for small mercies," said Remus who let himself drop to the ground like a wet sack of potatoes.
"He's lucky he's running with us, otherwise…"
He left the rest unsaid.
"Well lads… having fun?" Harry asked, stepping up to the trio just before Sirius could finish his last comment.
All he received were a few hateful glares.
"No…pity…because I'll have you running a marathon, or at the very least a half-marathon before the competition…and a ten kilometer hike up a mountain with a few pounds on your back…"
"OH… you got to be kidding me," Sirius practically wailed in despair, a statement which was echoed pitifully by students all around him.
"No, I'm deadly serious" said Harry with a smile which promised future pain and hardships.
Sirius was so shocked by this new revelation that he never even commented that he, not Harry was called 'Sirius'.
"Right…kiddies…," said Harry turning away from the group, time to learn a favourite spell of mine…separate into groups…the words are…."
"Murder me, Remy," said Sirius as he momentarily tuned out of Harry's speech, just before he crawled forwards on all fours to join a group.
"No…it's your turn Siri…I did it last time," Remus said just before he followed, limping slightly.
From a hidden spot of the room Portrait Harry did the same, although it was more of a laugh.
"You there, less talking, more listening…down onto the floor, give me fifty, "Harry roared.
Slowly, exhaustedly they complied.
"I DIDN'T HEAR YOU!...IS THAT CLEAR!" came Harry's voice again, from the back.
"SIR! YES! SIR! "
"Good!" he said just before kicking a fellow student into the rear end, simply because he was slacking off.
Surprisingly he let Harry do so without complaint.
#Headmaster's Office, a few days later
"Adrian, I'm telling you, something is not right with those Dragons," Thornton said from her seat in the Headmaster's office.
"Oh, and why is that? asked the recipient of those words.
"I'm not really sure but most nights all of the Dragons seem to… be missing from the school. It's strange, it's like they simply vanish some nights and don't return until just before curfew.
"It's maddening… I'm positive… I simply know they and that Granger boy are up to something…"
Arian sighed softly as he heard his Dragon Head of house complain about her favorite student, every bit of pun intended.
Well, Harry was her favorite student, to pick on, and he fully supported it the same way he supported her actions for all the other students.
He liked the way it kept Harry and his friends busy with Thornton and off his back while he went around his other two more important tasks, to spy for the Ministry and to suss out potential recruits for his other, real master, the Dark Lord.
Especially Harry. That boy gave him the chills.
"Have you any evidence that they are doing something…anything which the school rules may not allow?" he asked forcing himself out of his own musings.
"That's just it…I can't find them…if I can't find them I can't catch them," Thornton said furiously.
"I already have a large amount of the Slytherins on the look out for the other houses, but unless they are actually caught doing something… illegal, there isn't anything I can do."
"That's all very good and wonderful Adi, but if you, their head of house, can't catch them, and you practically sleep beside them, what makes you think I could help? What do you want from me?" asked Adrian Maddox, who was beginning to get bored listening to her whining.
"Give me permission to put Tracking Charms on the students…especially the Dragons," she answered quickly.
"Hmm," said Maddox who seemed to be busy studying his fingernails.
"Alright… I'll see what I can do, I'll get permission from the Ministry and the Governors to do so later on today…I'm sure Malfoy, Nott and Mrs. Black would be more than happy to accommodate me. Do you think you can wait that long?"
"Sure, that would be wonderful," Thornton answered, a triumphant smile back on her face.
"I'll also ask the portraits to keep a look out for any…lost students. Sadly the ghosts won't listen to me anymore, for some reason… "
"…Which reminds me, I have to ask for them to send me someone who can get rid of that pesky Poltergiest…" he said to himself in a low voice.
Thornton, who managed to catch what he said, grinned. She never did like that menace anyway. It would be good to get rid of him.
Thanking Maddox, she left his office. She had a speech to prepare. A speech where she would explain to her Dragons that they would have a Tracking Charm placed on them soon. For their own personal safety, of course. After all, they had a crazed killer on the loose. It's the least she could do for their safety. At least that's what she would tell them all.
# Next day, Potions
Harry was once again in a bad mood.
Thornton had done it again.
That wrench had somehow managed to persuade Maddox to allow her to place Tracking Charms on all of his friends and soldi…er… fellow Dragolets.
Because of that he had already had to cancel the last DA meeting and was now spending several nights searching though several books in the restricted section of the Library for a way out of this newest mess.
That woman was really beginning to irk him into great and terrible, righteous anger. Not a good thing if you knew what Harry could be like when angry.
He could of course remove the charms. But that would certainly alert the Thorn, and in extension the Dog.
While it might give everybody a day or two of blissful freedom, at the most, all she would have to do is force through a legislation forbidding the removal of said charms.
No…that wouldn't do, that wouldn't do at all, he needed to think of something better.
What about if he moved the charms to peoples beds or chairs in the dormitory common room?
No, he thought, she would only have to walk in and then everything would be lost.
What about if we train during the middle of the night, instead of during the day, when Thorny is asleep? he thought while stirring his cauldron.
It's not like as if we could be in any more trouble…could we? After all, they can't really expel a whole house… or rather three quarters of the school…can they?
If it gets really bad, I could always Obliviate the whole lot of them, after I have taken care of Thorny and Maddy of course, but that could become messy. Besides, he wasn't really allowed to do that.
But then again, Maddox was never supposed to have been in the school either…
Surely it wouldn't matter if something accidently happened to him…
It would only be an added bonus if the Thorn fell down a staircase in the process…wouldn't it?
Well, I think I'll do both, remove the charms and place them on peoples beds and have them training during the night.
Sadly I don't know how to make time turners…people will be very tired during the day…
Hmm, what about if I gave them some of my eternal light, night and day walker potion?
A potion which had been forgotten about many hundred years ago and which he only knew about due to his special training.
It should keep them awake through the whole night and the next day…
Everybody would only need to sleep every second day…
Yes, that could work…
Harry jumped, startled out of his musings. He had been so focused on thinking up a plan that he hadn't noticed himself stirring his potion the wrong way, and he had forgotten to add some of the rune spore livers which he was supposed to add.
"Oops…er…sorry about that…er… I…wasn't …"
"Yes, it's very clear you weren't paying any attention at all…were you?"
"Look at this, just look at this mess. Detention for the rest of the week and restricted Curfew for the rest of the night," Thornton screamed, as she vanished Harry's black, purple and hostile smelling mess.
"Yes ma'am," said Harry, meekly, his anger for now forgotten.
Well, it had been his fault, really. He deserved this one, he thought, slightly embarrassed about what he had done. Re-filling his cauldron with fresh water once more he started to remake his potion.
# That evening, Dragon Dormitories
Finally finished with his latest bout of, what was for once well earned, deserved detention, Harry stepped through the Dragon entrance portrait with only one thing in mind.
Well, perhaps two.
One: to tell his troops about his newest plans, in their war against the Thorn and Dog.
The second: to get some sleep, because he felt somewhat tired.
Gutting horned armoured toads for potions was not only disgusting but also very tiring to say the least.
Especially when you have to clean out the same cauldrons where they were afterwards, and that under the strict eyes of a hated professor, whose sole mission in life is to torment you.
The last time he felt so tired was after a grueling session with the devil.
I must be going soft, he thought.
Entering the dorms, those illusions were however quickly shattered, when he saw none other than his present girlfriend, Lily Evans, his future mother to be, look up and beckon him to come over to her.
Oh damn, he thought, not completely sure whether he felt up to it at that moment.
With a small sigh, Harry quickly placed a forced smile on his face and walked over.
He wasn't really sure why he was dating her at present...or at all for that matter. After all, she was supposed to go out with James, not him.
However, Harry didn't want to risk losing her completely, not now, not when it seemed more and more unlikely everyday that those two were to get together any time soon.
Harry thought that perhaps, if he would stay as her boyfriend he could, somehow, get them together again later on.
After all, he was friends with both of them, although looking at James who was brooding quietly in the corner, he had to admit, things were not going to plan.
Thinking about it he realized, maybe he really was only friends with one of them.
That thought really disturbed him, greatly.
Poor James. He really took the loss of his Head Boy badge rather strongly.
If anything, the hate he felt for his unknown future son had only grown since then.
Harry wouldn't have cared about that if he were to get together with his future mum…
Damn that still sounds strange.
…however, the complete opposite seemed to be happening.
He would have gladly surrendered Lily to him…but…
Since the Hogsmeade disaster, neither could even come close to each others, due to the separation spell the Hogs-thorn and Hogs-dog duo had placed on them.
Now the only other time, besides the common room and the Room of Requirement, where they could come even a mere meter close to each others was during class time, when they were required to be in the same room. The rest of the time it wasn't even possible to come within ten meters of each others.
There wasn't enough space to be effectively separated from each other in the common room and Harry had taken care of that problem for the R.O.R.
Still, it wasn't all bad.
At least it gave Harry a sort of a safe haven away from James whenever he needed it, since all he ever had to do was stick close to Lily.
Sometimes it seemed to Harry as if the only thing that was keeping James interested in Lily… was him and his moves towards her.
Even if his interest seemed to be purely out of jealousy.
Harry wasn't really sure what he was supposed to do.
Taking a seat beside Lily he gasped when she practically jumped onto his lap and started to kiss him.
Panicking inwardly, Harry really felt like running away at that moment, but refrained from doing so.
He was after all being kissing by his future mother, not something anybody would really want to do.
Well, a kiss is ok, perhaps, from time to time, in a loving, mother- son way. He was after all her future son, even if in the future… but…no, no, no, not like this, not romantically.
Still, he gave her back as much as she gave him. It was all part of his plan for the greater future good, as he called it. He had to act his part.
My, how much he was becoming to hate those words, but, nobody ever said he had to like it, just to accept it…and do it.
Ten minutes later, satisfied for the moment, Lily detached herself from Harry, who was sweating slightly.
Frowning at what she was seeing she decided to speak:
"What's wrong, Harry? Are you ok?"
Taken somewhat by surprise by the comment Harry quickly answered:
"Yes, of course."
Like I'd say anything else, he thought.
"Well, it doesn't look like it. Are you sure? We don't have to do this if you don't want to, you know," she said somewhat hesitantly, afraid that she had messed up somehow.
Oh what the heck! In for a Knut, in for the Galleon…, he thought.
"I do love you…I'm just not used to this," Harry said just before he stopped her from retorting by covering her mouth with another kiss, successfully silencing the girl.
Well it is true…I AM not used to this…and I hope I never will be…thank heavens that I do love her though…just differently.
During the kiss he was doing his best to think of Ginny, his true love and replace the woman on his lap with her, instead of who he was actually kissing.
It sort of helped…somewhat.
"Oh cut it out and get a room, will you," James remarked sharply, before stomping out of the room, careful all the way to stay as far away from the couple as he could.
"Shut it, Potty Poo," said Lily nastily.
Shit! was Harry's only mental reply.
Another five minutes and a huge kiss later, Harry finally managed to dislodge himself from Lily's mouth.
This isn't going to plan at all, he thought.
"Well, see you later hun," Lily said, dazed from their latest sudden kiss, as she began to get up from his lap, satisfied with what she had received.
"Wait…er…where are you going?" Harry asked before he could stop himself, regretting it almost immediately.
I'm so screwed, he thought.
"Oh, no where really. I have some homework to finish…want to join me?" Lily asked sweetly.
"Sorry…not now… maybe later," Harry answered somewhat quickly, then remembered…"I have an announcement to make though…"
"An announcement?" asked Lily, immediately interested, perking up, immediately wondering whether it could be about her.
"Yes, an announcement. I was going to make it before...well you know…that happened…well…em… anyway…," Harry said, blushing slightly.
"Oh...ok," said Lily somewhat disappointed, but she hid it well. Looking at him now it seemed clear it wasn't going to be about her after all.
Taking a deep breath Harry collected his thoughts and before he could say anything else which he might somehow regret, he walked to the middle of the room, placed a few high level Privacy Charms on the doors and then called for everybody's attention.
"AHEM…Excuse me everybody…"
Immediately everybody stopped what they were doing and turned to listen.
"You ok mate?…you seem kinda red," came a voice from the back of the room.
Now really flustered, Harry paused for a second to collect his thoughts. Lily had unnerved him more than he thought.
I really have to get those two together soon, or else I'm going to go insane, either that or do something unforgivable, he thought.
"As I wanted to say…"
"Thornton …yes…?" asked a voice.
"Er…yes," said Harry.
Oh come on Harry, get yourself together man…
"I... I believe nobody is happy with what she has recently done…right?" he asked.
A chorus of agreement returned to him.
"Oh, ok...good…because I may have a way around that."
Immediately, hearing this, everybody perked up. Everybody in the room were very angry with what had happened, as they all knew what Thornton really had in mind, and all wanted to get rid of the tracking charms as soon as possible.
"Starting from tomorrow, every night after one in the morning to six we are going to resume training…."
"What? How?" came a few voices from the back of the room.
"…Please let me finish…," Harry said loudly, his nerves back the way they were before Lily kissed him.
"… every night after one in the morning, once Thornton is asleep, we will go to train in the ROR…"
Raising his voice another bit as a few people were beginning to complain he continued:
" I WILL…be giving everybody who wishes to participate a special potion which…which…."
"That's too late…" "What about classes in the morning?… I will be too tired to…," came multiple complaints from different people around the room who had stopped listening in order to complain.
"…SILENCE!" Harry roared as the noise level in the room had begun to get a little too loud for people to hear him.
Immediately the room quieted down and Harry continued as if nothing had happened:
"As I was saying…I will be giving everybody a special potion which will keep all of those willing to participate wide awake for the whole night and the whole next day. It will also improve everybody's concentration levels, so you should have no problems what so ever attending your classes.
"I SHALL, be highly displeased with anybody who misses a class without a very good reason.
"Training will only take place every three days, to counteract any potential side effects from not having enough sleep.
"Along with the potion I will also be removing the Tracking Charm from yourselves and attaching it to your beds during each training period. Since that is where they expect you to be, nobody will come looking for us.
"I will of course regrettably have to reattach the charm on to you again afterwards so that our dear head of house will not gain any reasons to be more suspicious anymore than she already is.
"Lily, I will teach you the spells to detect, remove, and attach the charm so you can do it for the girls," he said looking over at Lily who nodded before giving him one of her smiles.
"Good, now any questions?…does everybody want to do this?" he asked.
"What if Thornton decides to walk in here and check up on us?" somebody asked.
"She won't," Harry answered.
"Yes… right…but what if she does...there is always the chance?" asked the same voice.
"She won't," Harry said again, slightly louder, glaring at the boy, wishing the idiot would shut up before he ruined everything, as a few people were beginning to look doubtful.
Apparently getting the message, if reluctantly, the boy shut up but left the room in a huff.
Sighing to himself, Harry made a note to Obliviate him before he could raise any further doubts amongst the others.
Besides, Harry already had a few plans laid out for that situation. One of which was to ask Hogwarts herself to block of certain passageways for the night so that Thornton couldn't reach them. The other to have the ghosts, particularly Peeves, who was also being threatened, to keep look outs and run diversions.
The little poltergeist had been more than willing to help after he had found out about the Thorn and Dogs plans to excommunicate him.
The other ghosts, seeing one of their numbers threatened – even if it was the pesky little annoying poltergeist - quickly followed his lead.
As an heir to a founder (a real, original founder), they would listen to him before a headmaster, or any imposter like Maddox anyway.
"Any further questions? Harry asked again.
It was a credit to the trust and blind obedience everybody had towards him that nobody seemed to question him any further and no one seemed to care that Harry had never answered the boy's question.
"No…wonderful …alright, meet up there tomorrow night at ten to one for your next lessons."
"AFTER…Lily or myself have taken care of your charms," he added quickly.
That said Harry turned and left the room to alter the memories of the boy who had spoken.
# Meanwhile, in Heaven
"What in the name of Faith and Chaos is he doing?" asked James as he looked at Harry from his cloudy window above.
"He's trying to bring you and Lily back together again and to train the school against the Thorn…and d..hog," Sirius answered in a nonplussed voice. Sirius took offence from Maddox being called a dog.
"Though I must admit, things are not going to plan."
"Why what do you think he's doing?"
"Oh Harry, I don't know…I really don't know…please don't…it will only go wrong," James said, worried that Harry may do something foolish….
He wasn't listening to Sirius beside him.
"James, are you listening to me?" asked Sirius.
"What are you doing, Harry?" James asked himself once more.
His feet were already edging towards the nearest exit, ready to rush for help, should Harry need it.
"You know what?" Sirius said, looking at James seriously.
"Careful, Harry," said James.
"James, come quick, look, Harry is shagging Lily…and he's doing it doggy style too," said Sirius.
"Harry, please be careful," said James, still not hearing Sirius.
"Okay…I think you need to stop worrying about him for once and take a much needed break," Sirius said and pressed a button on a nearby remote control.
At that moment, almost immediately, the window James had been looking through disappeared.
"HEY!" James shouted. "How am I supposed to keep an eye on…"
"The idea is that you don't," said Sirius, cutting him off.
"I want to hear no further comments from you about Harry for at least the next few days, preferably weeks, or else I'll get Lily over here to take you by the ear," Sirius threatened with a smile.
"Besides, by the way your relationship with her is progressing below, you'd better enjoy any time you can have with her…while you still can," Sirius added in a matter of fact voice.
That got James's attention.
"You don't really mean…they wouldn't …I mean…he couldn't possibly…we wouldn't…would we?" James asked, shocked.
"It could very well happen…" Sirius answered.
"But…it can't…it isn't possible…how will Harry…"
"Shush…I'm sure he will be just fine," said Sirius.
"But what if.."
"JAMES, SHUT UP! THAT'S ENOUGH. You're driving me nuts," Sirius practically roared.
"Go, Lily is waiting for you."
#Headmaster's Office, Round Two
"Oh hello, Adi… back so soon? Are your little Dragons still giving you sleepless nights? Maddox joked as Thornton walked back into his office.
Thornton gave him a glare in return.
"Well…everything seems to be all right," she answered him, though it was fairly clear from her expression and tone of voice that it wasn't.
"The Tracking Charms you placed on them seem to be working, but…"
Thornton hesitated, unsure of how to continue.
Sensing this, Maddox prompted her, "But?..."
"…But, well…there have been no more night time strolls since we placed them," Thornton continued.
Maddox raised his eyebrows and for a second fought the desire to roll his eyes.
"And I'm sure your unhappy about that…because?..."
Sensing that she was beginning to make a fool of herself Thornton quickly continued. "Because that doesn't explain why the castle walls and starways seem to want me away from the 7th floor, or why there is no movement what so ever in the Dragon dormitories during the night and they are all in bed, when it has been quite common enough for students to walk around in their common rooms in the past, even after one in the morning.
"After all it's not against the rules to be in the common room after hours…just not outside of it.
"And then there are also the ghosts who have been acting somewhat peculiarly lately," she added as an after thought.
That got Maddox's attention. Maddox, who had been listening quietly to her, perked up at the last part.
"Yes, I must admit, that is strange," he said mumbling to himself.
He too had been experiencing the ghost's sudden change of attitude and he wondered what it meant.
"That is…disturbing…," he said quietly to himself, then looked back at his Head of House.
"Very well… I'll look into this, please continue to do the same."
With a nod, slightly relieved, Thornton left the room.
"I think it's time to fast forward our plans a bit," Maddox mumbled to himself the moment Thornton was gone.
Rising from his chair, Maddox walked over to the fireplace and grabbed some powder from a jar above it.
A second later his head was in the fire.
"Ah, yes…hello, Baltimore, isn't it…please be so kind and … request a moment of our Lord's precious time. I believe I may have some information which might interest him..."
# The battles continue
"Harry! Harry! Quick!…," a student shouted, rushing through the doors of the Room of Requirement.
With a sigh Harry paused from writing on the nearby board which he was presently using to explain a rather difficult question about one of Slytherins laws concerning the reactions of certain ingredients while preparing potions during the full moon.
Around him multiple third year students from four of Hogwarts five houses paused from copying what he had written, to do the same.
It was during the day and Harry was in the middle of teaching a Remedial Potions class, busy trying to help a few fellow students who were struggling with their potions studies.
He had specially put aside the last hour of his rather limited free time to do this and was therefore somewhat annoyed when he was interrupted, as his time was rather limited.
"Archer, can I help you?...You do realise that I am in the middle of an important class here at the moment," Harry said doing his best to keep any sign of annoyance from showing in his voice.
For a second Archer looked sheepish, realising what he has just interrupted, but quickly remembered the reason why he had come.
"Harry, its Jonathan and Lisa, you must help them, they are about to be caught by 'T' and we have no way of alerting or helping them."
Harry immediately became alert, "What's wrong…where are they, what happened," he asked, quickly moving away from the board.
Lisa Bletchley was quite important to him in his current plans as she had a few useful contacts within the Ravenclaw students from the lower years.
Losing her in any way, due to suspension or worse, could be a serious blow to his recruiting plans, at least when it came to the house of the intellect. A lot of the 1st to 3rd year Ravens seemed to listen to her and her loss would be seriously felt.
His class forgotten, Harry put his whole attention on the problem at hand.
"Lisa had the idea of sneaking into T's office when she wasn't there to find out about any information on what she and 'Mad' might know about us or what they are planning. It would have worked too if a few Slytherins hadn't locked the door with them inside."
Hearing this, Harry's expression turned from anxious to dark and serious.
"How much time have we left before T is back from…where ever she is?"
"Not much, she is already on her way…two minutes…maybe less," said the very worried Archer.
"ICEY," Harry shouted.
With a white flash of ice which showered everybody in the room, emitting loud squeals and yelps from everybody nearby, Icey appeared on a nearby table.
"Your Lordship rang?" the phoenix said, looking quite bored.
Ignoring his sulking familiar's tone Harry turned to face her.
Icetasia still hadn't forgiven him his rash, badly planned….and overall exceedingly dark… actions of the past few weeks.
"Yes I did, I need you to quickly flash into the DADA class room before Thornton or Maddox can reach it. There are two students, a girl from Ravenclaw and a boy from Huffelpuff there. Bring them here... Immediately .
"As you Lordship desires," Icey replied and flashed away.
With a sigh Harry conjured himself a seat and sat down. He could only hope Icey would not be too late.
#DADA classroom, Thornton's private office,
"Lisa, we can't get out…the Thorn squad is outside and it doesn't look like as if they are going anywhere soon," said Jonathan anxiously from the door.
Lisa, who was at that moment scouring the cupboards of Thornton's huge oak table for anything which could incriminate Thornton and Co, stopped what she was doing and looked up in dismay.
"What, already…it's only been...what?...five minutes?" she exclaimed, horrified.
"I knew this was a bad idea," said Jonathan miserably as he took another look at the door which was the only way out of the classroom. At least it was the only relatively safe way out of the classroom. The other was through a window and then over the roof. Not in any way a pleasant thought….it was dangerous, and besides, he was scared of heights.
"We know you're in there, little bitsy Lisa," came a voice from outside. It sounded like the person outside was singing.
Hearing this, Lisa, who had abandoned her search in favour of helping Jonathan, gasped.
"Oh no, how am I ever going to get out of this," she said, whimpering slightly, thinking about what her parents would say when she were expelled. She was pretty sure that she would be.
"It's no use resisting, little itsy bitsy spider," came the childish mocking voice again.
"We even have the pictures to prove it, right here," said another laughing voice, this time of a female.
"Narcissa! You bitch," screamed Lisa as she recognised the voice. She immediately wished she hadn't, but was too late.
Beside her Jonathan groaned. Now the game was definitely up.
Outside what now seemed to be a whole group were laughing with delight.
Realising that she was completely caught and overwhelmed by the situation, Lisa let herself fall to the ground and quietly began to cry. She didn't know how she would get out of this mess.
Beside her Jonathan was doing his best to comfort her, but he knew that he too was caught and not much better off. In a few minutes Thornton herself would arrive and then he and Lisa would most likely be out of the school before they could even say…
At that moment he and Lisa yelped as Icey flashed into the room.
"Icey!" said Lisa in surprise, hope suddenly reappearing in her eyes as she saw the magnificent bird, but the fleeting smile soon disappeared again to be replaced with sorrow.
Jonathan began to laugh as he realised that they could escape.
His smile however vanished a moment later when he turned round to face Lisa. She wasn't smiling, instead it only seemed as if more tears were falling down her cheeks.
"Lisa, what's wrong," he said, surprised by what he was seeing. "What are you waiting for? Grab on! Don't you realise what this means…we are safe now," he said, grabbing hold of one of Icey's feathers, careful not to pull too hard in case he might hurt the bird.
Lisa, however, shook her head sadly.
"Not for me…John…they know about me…you heard them", she sobbed. "If it's true what they said, they even have the photos to prove it," Lisa said through her tears.
Jonathan's previous look of relief turned to complete horror and disbelief.
Jonathan never got to say the last few words as at that moment both could hear Thornton return.
"Where is she?" they heard Thornton say from outside the door.
"Please…," Jonathan pleaded one more time but like before Lisa simply shook her head. She seemed to be resigned to her fate.
Before Jonathan could retort, Icey, who had been becoming increasingly impatient during the last few minutes flashed away, leaving Lisa behind in an otherwise empty room.
She was just in time as in that direct moment the door opened and Thornton stormed inside, a wicked gleeful smile spouting all over her face when she saw her prey in the room.
Lisa, seeing that all was lost, let herself fall to the ground once more.
#Room of Requirement
"NOOOOO! LIISSSAA!" screamed Jonathan the moment he reappeared in the R.O.R.
"Why Lisa? Why?" he said again as he too fell to the ground as he was released from Icetasia claws.
Harry, realising that Icey had returned, ran over to Jonathan.
"John, are you alright? Did she see you?..." Then realising that Lisa wasn't there he added, "Where is Lisa?"
"She...she...she," Jonathan tried to say, stuttering at every word, but couldn't.
Harry knew that Jonathan and Lisa had been a couple, so he waited patiently for Jonathan to calm down.
Besides, it would have done no good anyway either way to react harshly towards the boy.
One thing was clear though, Harry didn't need a sage or seer around to realise from the loyal Hufflepuff's face that Lisa had been caught.
Soon realising however, that Jonathan was not going to calm down any time soon, Harry motioned towards a fellow student to take care of Jonathan.
That done, Harry stood up and started to traverse towards the door his robes billowing behind him as he walked.
"Where are you going?" asked a nearby nervous student. Nobody present had ever seen Harry this intense and threatening before.
"I'm off to save the day," said Harry darkly, halting, as he opened the door of the R.O.R..
Without turning to face his friends and fellow students, his face still facing the door Harry added:
"Someone has to do the dirty work and it looks like as usual that I'm the one who has what it takes to do it…The only one who can." With that he left the room, leaving a bunch of shocked and frozen students behind.
At that same moment, Thornton, who was feeling exhilarated from her capture, lost no time in dragging Lisa to Maddox's office.
However, she soon found that Maddox had gone down to the Great Hall.
Presuming that it was for lunch, Thornton gleefully dragged Lisa by her ear towards the great hall instead.
She was going to make an example of this brat and where could there possibly be a better place to do just that then in front of the whole student body, during the school afternoon lunch.
Lisa, for her part, simply let her drag her around. She was much too downtrodden and resigned to her fate to fight back at this point anyway. However, when she realised that it was going to be in front of the whole school she began to panic. This was beginning to become a nightmare.
Grinning evilly at the frantically shaking girl beside her, Thornton opened the Great Hall door with a great push and walked through only to halt in surprise.
In front of Maddox stood none other than Scorpius Malfoy, the Minister's greatest advisor and right hand.
Frozen for a second, taken by surprise at the sight of the Ministry official she was momentarily unsure of what to do. Thornton was about to turn around and come back at a later stage when Maddox saw her.
"Ah, here is the woman of the hour," he said cheerfully as he saw Thornton, then he paused as he saw Lisa beside her with Thornton's fingers attached to her ear.
"Oh!" he said, taken by surprise.
"What's wrong?" asked Malfoy, turning around.
He raised his eyebrows as he saw what Maddox meant.
Seeing that she was in this for better or worse, and she hoped it was for the better and not the worse, Thornton decided to make the best of the situation.
"I beg your pardon, Sir, I don't wish to intrude."
"Madam Thornton, why are you… holding onto that girl's ear?" Malfoy asked, interested at what he was seeing.
"I…er…you see…Lisa here…er…," she said quickly releasing Lisa's ear in the process as if stung.
For a second Lisa began to smile…that smile was however quickly erased by what happened next.
"I asked her to bring the child here, Scorpi," Maddox said with an evil smile on his face, using his friend's nick name.
Hearing this, the whole hall fell silent as everybody stopped to listen.
Everybody present, staff and students, stared in complete shock. Surely this could not be good.
Both Lisa and Thornton looked surprised, though in Thornton's case she quickly hid it.
"You?" she asked. "You asked me to…oh… of course yes…I remember now…well…here she is…," Thornton said, flustered.
She didn't know what to think.
"Yes, thank you," Maddox said before turning back to face Malfoy.
None of them seemed to care in the least that Thornton had been nearly pulling Lisa's ear off as they had arrived.
"You see Scor...," Maddox continued speaking, "…I have reasons to believe that this girl, Lisa Bletchley," he said motioning towards Lisa who was now staring at him wide eyed, her eyes filled with terror at what was happening, "is in fact a member of a student task force working for the Dark Lord in recruiting students for the Dark Lord's cause."
Everybody gasped in alarm and horror as he said this, though most for completely different reasons.
"I see!..." said Malfoy, totally undisturbed by Maddox's claim.
"Very well…take her away…," he added a second later, motioning to somebody behind him.
Suddenly Lisa realized that a few Aurors were present and had followed Malfoy to Hogwarts. She became ghostly white and started to shake her head in complete denial.
The Aurors trained their wands on Lisa, who couldn't believe what was happening to her. It was like her worst nightmare coming true.
Without even taking a moment to consider whether Maddox was even saying the truth, or not, two of the Aurors present stepped closer and stunned and bound Lisa in thick ropes.
Nobody knew what only Maddox and Scorpius knew: that they were in fact Death Eaters, all disguised as Aurors.
"However, that isn't everything?" Maddox said, speaking up so that everybody in the room could hear him, effectively halting the Death Eater Aurors in their tracks before they could leave.
Malfoy smiled and motioned for Maddox to proceed once he was sure they had everybody's attention again.
"Lisa isn't the main problem here," Maddox said, snidely looking at Lisa as if she was a piece of filth, which to him she was.
"Miss Bletchley here, while indeed guilty of her crimes, is not actually the main problem here. She is, in fact, only a small fish in the pond so to speak."
Hearing this multiple students closed their eyes. The horror they were hearing and seeing was making them feel sick.
"Yes, yes, I agree, it's sad what the world is coming to. Here we are in a school, surrounded by so many innocent students…all of which desperately need to be protected…," Maddox continued speaking, looking mainly towards the Slytherins as he spoke, " …but the real danger here is not actually Miss Bletchley but a completely different person altogether, a person, who, I know for sure, from a reliable source, is actually the Dark Lord's current apprentice."
This caused an uproar.
After hearing these words multiple students and teachers began to argue.
It was practically a miracle that no harmful spells were fired during that time.
As it was, it didn't take long for the present DEA's to subdue everybody present and soon it was as if nothing had happened.
Maddox continued as if nothing had happened.
"The Apprentice of the Dark Lord is a student, of this very establishment called Harry Granger," he said victoriously.
This time the hall was deathly quiet.
Nobody spoke as Maddox's last words rang through the hall.
Everybody held their tongues and many hoped that what had just been said was not true.
Many didn't even consider to believe what their fake headmaster had said could possibly be true.
…nobody but one…
…a small eleven year old girl.
"That's not true," said the small first year girl named Katie Dawson from the crowds. "And you know it," she added defiantly before anybody could stop her.
Many of the teachers present closed their eyes in anguish as they heard her speak.
This was surely not the right time to speak out against their educational tyrant of an overlord.
"Oh and who would you be, young lady, to know better than the Headmaster and Mr. Malfoy, confidant and advisor to the Minister and highly valued member of the Wizengamot, " said Thornton, giving her one of her evil glares.
"Shut up, bitch, you can't say anything, you never ever liked him anyway," the girl responded angrily.
The whole hall gasped.
Thornton was practically boiling over with rage, she was so red.
"My, my, my, what nasty words I hear…," said Malfoy with a sneer.
"Oh shut up, Smellboy," said the girl again, effectively wiping the sneer of Malfoys face.
This time no gasp was heard, only stunned silence.
Slowly Malfoys expression changed to one of great anger.
"Insolent whelp, who do you think you are?" he roared and advanced towards the little girl menacingly.
Two students tried to stand in his way in the futile hope that somebody would stop him, but nobody did.
Katie, suddenly realized what she had done, and like Lisa before her, she took a moment to look around the room for help.
Nobody was smiling, and no snickers could be heard.
Now very afraid, she tried to back away from the advancing man but found her path blocked by two of Thorn's Slytherins, who were grinning down evilly at her. It was fairly clear they were looking forward to what was about to come.
The girl gulped and again looked at some of her fellow students for help but only found looks of shock and helplessness in their eyes.
Silently she pleaded with them but again only found looks of pity and some of the older students even looked away.
"Oh," she said quietly to herself, feeling completely helpless, which she was, just before Malfoy grabbed her by the arm and pulled her out of the crowd.
Malfoy conjured himself a throne like seat in the middle of the hall and sat down in it then with another quick motion he pulled the girl over his lap.
"Oh no…please don't," the girl whimpered, petrified, as she fully realized what was about to happen to her, but it was all in vain.
A second later she felt her skirt move up, away from her legs and fall over her shoulders, then in one swift motion her knickers were removed, exposing her bare bottom for all to see.
Horrified and greatly embarrassed, she only managed to murmur one last plea of, "please don't," which fell on deaf ears, before the first stoke fell.
Malfoy had conjured himself a huge wooden paddle and was hitting her with all of his might.
Nearly all of the students present and a lot of the staff looked away at what they were seeing.
Many were deeply disgusted at what was happening but felt powerless to do anything about it.
Silently a 3rd year Gryffindor sneaked out of the hall when nobody was watching him.
Most of the Slytherins, however, mainly those from the Thorn squad, watched with excitement and some were even beginning to chortle at the girl's screams.
Some edged forward for a closer look.
Thornton simply had a huge sickening smile on her face. It was a sickening sight.
The punishment seemed to go on forever and Malfoy didn't seem to be stopping anytime soon.
Slap after slap, stoke after stroke fell, to be replaced only by the girl's many cries of misery.
Tears were rolling down her face and the girl's buttocks were bright red and glowing.
Meanwhile, in the watching crowd, Lily, who had always had a kind heart, was using all of her self control to stop herself from losing control and reacting to the cries of the girl.
It was a lost battle.
Suddenly she couldn't take it any more.
"STOP!" she cried.
The hall froze and the slaps ceased.
Everybody turned to look at her and it took every bit of courage she had to not shrink away.
"Who said that?" Malfoy asked angrily from where he sat. The girl was still over his lap, sobbing hysterically from where she lay, his right hand was raised, holding the paddle, ready for the next swat.
"Please, sir!" Lily said.
Now really frightened and sorry, wishing that she had never spoken, hoping that if she used a respectful tone it might help, she continued to speak.
"…I don't mean any disrespect, Sir, but I think she has had enough."
That evidently was a bad thing to say as the next moment Malfoy replied:
"Oh, really…you think so, do you?" Malfoy exclaimed slightly mockingly before pushing the still weeping girl of his lap to fall to the ground painfully before standing up.
Lily took a step back hastily. Any thoughts she might have had to help the girl were quickly washed away and had changed towards helping herself instead.
"Who are you that you could possibly perceive to believe that you, a mere child, could have the right, much less the privilege, to even dare to tell me what to think, let alone do?" Malfoy asked, angrily looking at Lily who was really wishing she had never spoken.
"Lily Evans, sir!" she answered quietly.
She never even considered correcting him that she was in fact 17.
"Speak up, girl!" Malfoy said.
"Lily Ev..." Lily tried to say again a little louder, but faltered.
"Come here!" Malfoy added dangerously as he sat down again.
Lily gulped, not liking in the least where this was leading.
"Oh no please…I didn't mean…," she said horrified as she saw Malfoy pointing to his lap.
Somebody, she didn't really care who, shoved her out into the open and straight onto Malfoy's lap.
"You're next…," Malfoy said angrily as he pulled down her pants and raised his hand to strike her.
At the direct same moment Malfoy's paddle struck Lily's posterior, forcing her to emit a loud squeal from the pain, the whole hall was illuminated in an incredibly bright flash of light only to be followed a second later by an incredibly loud supersonic bang.
Everybody was forced to grab and hold their heads and cover their ears with their hands.
Those who didn't, or didn't do it in time cried out in pain and fell to the ground clutching their heads as if to tear their pain away.
"LEAVE HER ALONE!" an angry voice roared out before Malfoy suddenly felt a sharp pain before everything went black he knew no more.
#Several days later
Mathilda Bagnold, still, at least for now, the current Minister of Magic looked out at a currently assembled angry crowd.
She was feeling horrible.
How could things have gone so out of control, she asked her self again as she gingerly nursed a bruise on her forehead, courtesy of a rotten apple which had hit here there earlier that day.
It was a thought which she realized was becoming quite old.
She was still reeling from what had happened during the past few days and was still trying to come to grips with what the outcome of this absolute disaster would mean for her.
Nothing good, to say the least.
Just a few days ago she was the most powerful person in the wizarding isles, working towards her re-election…now, however…
Now, she only felt like crying.
As it was, most of the public were crying bloody murder and calling for her immediate resignation.
The few thousands or so Howlers alone had been bad enough, but when the public started to throw rotten fruit at her, in the middle of Diagon Alley, well, that had broken the Hippogriff's back.
The few friends she had had at that point had all but turned traitor and had even picked up some fruit themselves.
She still couldn't believe how it had come to that. The public had even been in the process of publically hanging Malfoy, her closest advisor, before the dratted brat had stopped it herself.
With a sigh she opened her mouth and started to address the assembled crowd for what she was sure would be her last time.
"Fellow wizards and witches…"
An angry mummer reached her ears and she gulped.
"…We have all assembled here today for three reasons…"
She said the word three with a sob.
"One, a cause to celebrate, the others… causes to weep."
"Please bear with me as I announce first one bad, then the good….and finally…" she paused again with a grimace and another quiet sob, "…the other …other bad."
Again an angry murmur rose from the crowd at her words and from the corner of her eyes, to her dismay, she saw a few holding and handing out more rotten fruit.
With a grimace she steeled herself for what was yet to come and continued to speak.
"Due to the sad and disturbing circumstances which have struck the school only a few days before…."
From the crowds a seventeen year old young woman, named Sarah Adeline Evans, tried to block out the Minister's words as she tried to remember what had happened only a few days before…months from her perspective.
Beside her a young man, also seventeen years old, named James Tiberius White was holding her hand, giving her the strength she needed, a look of love and adoration in his eyes whenever he glanced at the girl beside him.
While around them a grim crowd of students - dressed completely in a formal Purple uniform each armed to the teeth, with two wands, each in a separate wand holster, a shiny sword at their sides and a Muggle pistol in another holster at their other side – though that was only for show- were keeping a close guardian eye on the couple.
Trying her best to look undisturbed, but failing, the Minister continued to speak:
"The death of a very prominent student is never an easy time…"
Coming soon: 'Lockdown'; What actually happened...