AN: I've just made a forum for discussing this as I am currently writing this of the top of my head, literally. You can find it here:

forum/Fate-s-Gamble-Behind-the-scenes/139203/

Reviews are appreciated as this is the first fic I've ever wrote and I need to know what to tone down and what to improve so please be honest. that's it, thanks and now read the new chapter.

Beta'd by: Euphonia

Chapter 2 – Two of the Three

Harry came to slowly and felt everything around him as he became reacquainted with his five senses. He felt firm ground beneath his back, preferable to the rocky and jagged terrain from when he was last aware. He heard the wind a distance away as it blew past wherever he was. He could taste how dry the air around him was and there was an earthy scent to everything. Perhaps he was indoors somewhere and could smell the garden out of a window. That was until he opened his eyes. He looked around at the cave in which he lay. There was nothing about it that seemed particularly unusual but something had him on edge, it may have been how clean everything was or how smooth the floor and walls where.

"Έτσι, ο μικρός άνθρωπος είναι ξύπνιος τότε;" a voice behind him made him jump.

"Φαίνεται έτσι. Αναρωτιέμαι ποιο λόγο θα δώσει για την παρουσία του στο νησί μας."

He turned and saw the two women from before he lost consciousness. They were beautiful, with the appearance of late teens if not for their rather exotic colouring. They had long purple hair tied in two tails either side of their head that almost reached the floor. They wore unusual dresses edged in black and wore matching bands across the top of their hair and some sort of choker around their necks and upper arms. One had three purple bangles around her right arm where the other didn't. This was really the only physical indicator that differentiated them as they where nigh identical. The only other thing that was different was their bearing. The one with the bangles on her wrist was eying him warily with her arms crossed in front of her and had been the second one to speak. The other had an air of mischief about herself that was at odds with her twins cautious manner. Both once again had identical light purple eyes that told a story all of their own. They contained a number of emotions but the only ones he could pick up were sadness and a touch of regret.

"E-excuse me but I don't understand you. Can you speak English?" Harry asked timidly.

"περίεργος. Αυτό ακούγεται παράξενο δεν είναι; Αναρωτιέμαι τι λέει; Είναι σίγουρα δεν είναι ελληνική." the first said with curiosity evident in her voice.

"Φαίνεται όχι. Δεν φαίνεται καν να γνωρίζουν πού είναι ή ποιοι είμαστε. Δυστυχώς, χωρίς να μιλούν την ίδια γλώσσα δεν είμαστε στερημένοι από τους τρόπους για να τον αμφισβητήσει." The other said in a more bland tone "Αναρωτιέμαι αν ένα φίδι θα μπορούσε να φοβίσει κάποιο νόημα γι 'αυτόν;" She then walked past him to the mouth of the cave. His eyes tracked her as he shuffled up against the wall trying to keep the other woman in his peripheral view. While he had no reason to distrust them he had learned by now in his few short years that he shouldn't trust everyone without reason.

Euryale watched as her sister passed by the boy on her way to fetch a snake and wondered how this boy would react. Since the loss of their sister so long ago each had found an emotional outlet to prevent them falling into the same state as their poor sister had. Whereas Euryale had found that not taking everything seriously allowed her attention to wander and not focus on the negative memories she possessed, Stheno had taken to being pretty much ambivalent to anything and everything that occurred. The sun rises in the east? Yeah it does that. A tree grows from seedling to mighty oak? Yeah, I saw it happen. Random child appears out of thin air? Drag him up to the cave and keep a careful watch over him just in case. This had been the most unusual thing to happen in recent times. Hell it had been pretty much the only thing of note in the past three millenia since they had lost their younger sister. Since then no one had entered their island and they had not left. It seemed humans were no longer capable of visiting them whether there intentions be pure or debased. She wondered what had happened in the passing of time. However one thing she had noticed that Stheno had paid no attention to was the injuries the child bore. Stheno might not care other than it showed he was not strong enough to do anything to them but Euryale had a slight feeling of unease. As far as she could tell the marks where put there with human strength and looked to be meant as a means of torture, honestly! Humans could be sure unpleasant beings at times.

After Stheno had left Harry looked at the other one and she looked to be evaluating him. A look of disgust crossed her face and Harry hoped he was not the cause of that as he was in no position to fight back if attacked even if the attacker was a half-dead poodle.

Steps from the cave mouth alerted him to the return of the other of the duo. He turned to her and his eyes widened and his nostrils slit in fear. Draped over her neck was a huge snake almost as thick as his own torso and long enough that despite wrapping around her neck and body still trailed a ways behind her.

He froze as the large reptile uncurled from the woman and slithered towards him. It was about two feet away when Harry broke out of his daze and began muttering under his breath "Please don't eat me, Please don't eat me" not noticing the two women turn and look at him sharply. The snake also seemed to recoil in surprise.

Then Harry froze as something new happened, and he had thought he'd fulfilled his quota of strangeness already, the snake spoke.

"So you are not unintelligent are you man-child, what are you doing here on the island of my mistresses?" it questioned dragging out and hissing all the s's.

"I don't know where I am, I am sorry to say I don't even know who your mistresses are and could you please say sorry to them for me?"

It was then that Euryale couldn't hold it any longer. She giggled. Drawing the looks of Stheno and the child along with the snake. She looked from Stheno who had raised an eyebrow at her to the child looking at her with hesitant eyes to the snake next to him that had a knowing glint in its eyes. To think, after all this time alone on the shapeless isle. The first human that had arrived in three thousand years ended up speaking the language of snakes? She giggled once again before devolving into a laughing fit from the sheer irony of it all.

The snake looked from the gorgon convulsing in laughter to the other who still stood in the cave mouth and spoke "Seeing as your sister is so out of sorts at present please may I convey this lad's apology to you for his seemingly unknowing trespass from him to you"

"My thanks to you and my sister has always been a few trees short of a forest so it is no great loss"

Harry looked at the woman for a moment before remembering his voice "I thought you couldn't speak English?"

"English? Was that the language you spoke before? Nevertheless listen to yourself now. You are no more speaking English than I am speaking Greek right now. You are speaking the language of snakes as can be confirmed by our scaled friend here."

Harry blinked and looked from the woman to the snake, back to the woman and finally to the snake again who nodded at him. Now many people would be freaked out long before they got to this point but Harry had far passed that point and as nothing had yet happened to him he decided to relax a little and take what was presented him at face value.

Stheno seeing the boy relax a little decided they might as well get introductions out of the way. "Seeing as this is the only language we share it would be best to converse like this for now. Now that it seems my sister has gotten past her convulsions it would be remiss of us not to introduce ourselves, as it seems you do not know us, and then we can find out the means by which you arrived here. My name is Stheno and hers is Euryale. May I ask for yours?"

This was surreal for Stheno. She was having a civil conversation with a human and he didn't come here either voluntarily or seeking her beauty and, on top of that, they were speaking as snakes would. Perhaps this particular human wasn't so bad she thought.

Harry had also paused but for a completely different reason. He had read books at school and borrowed ones from the library. Myths and legends had been the only books that the Dursley's allowed that even suggested the existence of a more supernatural world, one of gods and monsters and ones of magic and heroes. He had paused because he had recognised the two names she had used as an introduction.

"My name is Harry. Excuse me but did you say your names where Stheno and Euryale?" Harry questioned. Stheno blinked at this but replied in the affirmative. After being questioned why he responded gaining Euryale's attention as well this time.

"As far as I am aware those two names are the names of two of the gorgon sisters from Greek mythology but they seem to be somewhat inaccurate"

It was Euryale who asked this time "Oh? Inaccurate in what way? And what do you mean by us being myths?"

"Well as far as I was aware there was no such thing as the gorgons or gods. The heroes mentioned are just story characters and the legends just more stories. In the gorgon myth Medusa was a handmaiden and she and Poseiden were having sex in Athena's temple and Athena cursed Medusa and her sisters to be ugly forever. Medusa was supposed to be so ugly that the mere sight of her face turned anyone who looked at her to stone. They where exiled to the Shapeless Isle where they terrorized humans for a long time. Stheno was supposed to be the most vicious of the three. Later a hero by the name of Perseus came along and removed Medusa's head, He was able to see by looking in her reflection in a polished shield. He left with his prize, her head and used it to stop a sea monster if I recall correctly as he kept her head in a bag and then revealed it to a sea serpent. Perseus' only comment on Medusa's fate was that it was 'well deserved'. The only continuation of the story was the two children of Medusa. A pegasus and a warrior named Chrysaor who both sprang from the decapitated neck of Medusa's corpse, the latter already clad in golden armour and fully grown. The only other aspect of the legend is the gorgons supposedly having snakes for hair. There are variations of this such as one where Poseiden raped Medusa instead of her making love willingly but that is the general story as I know it.'"

The two sisters looked at each other and blinked, stunned by what they had heard. The humans no longer knew they existed? They did not even believe them possible? Even more amusing they thought all of their heroes of old to be nothing more than children's stories? But they had gotten it wrong and Stheno immediately set to rectify that with this one child, Harry he had said his name was.

"As for being two of the gorgon sisters that is correct but that is almost all that is correct. We were never human hand maidens. We were born from the wishes of people that desired perfect gods unlike the flawed gods the Greeks worshipped. We came into being as we are and our sister Medusa was the youngest but unlike us was born a mortal, long-lived surely but as a mortal she still aged while we remained unchanged. As for turning people to stone she had something known as mystic eyes, eyes that can affect the world they see. The mystic eyes of Cybele that our sister possessed can indeed turn mortal flesh to stone with no chance of it being reversed. As far as lying with a male, not one of us three have lost our virginity and the pegasus you mentioned was a gift from Poseiden, not a child. Chrysaor is not a name I recognise and as none of us have slept with another then he could not be a gorgon's child. In older days we lived amongst the people and lived a happy life. The only regret that we possess is making fun of our sister's eyes and advancing age, which I freely admit was most childish of us. This was not to last forever as the gods grew angered and turned our people against us. We were banished here to the Shapeless Isle as it is known. The beauty of my sister and myself was known far and wide. Men came to claim us for their own and Medusa took to guarding the island and devouring those who sought after our beauty. She became twisted by peoples' beliefs. Eventually she transformed into a monster by appearance and we knew we had lost her. We did not want to leave her and allowed ourselves to be consumed by her hoping to be closer to her and to soothe her pain. We were eaten by our sister but like the gods when consumed by Kronos we did not die a final death. We remained within her for a long time. The next clear memory I possess is waking next to my sister's rotting corpse. The decay must have freed us from her stomach. The occasional man would still come to the island intending to gain our favour but that slowly stopped. From them we learnt how our sister expired. Being the only mortal one of us, and what we have heard of this Perseus is less than flattering. An inflated ego and no redeeming qualities or skills to his name other than being an opportunist. We have been here since then, some two thousand years since the last man arrived to woo us."

Euryale took over from her sister "You can stay the night and we will see about returning you to your family come morning. If the gods truly have no hold on the world then we no longer have reason to remain here as there is none to enforce our banishment." Noticing the wince at the mention of his family Euryale's eyes narrowed. The wounds on his body had been put there by human hand undoubtedly but was it possible... "Harry, who gave you your wounds?" she asked, her voice taking on a dangerous edge. She and Stheno may have made fun of Medusa's differences but it was not done out of malice, they were a family after all. They were all each other had. Stheno's gaze met hers and sharpened. If there was one thing they agreed on it was that family was important, they had after all willingly let their sister consume them and there were few others who would do that, even for family.

Harry mulled over his thoughts. He could tell them or he could not tell them. If he did, what then? They might not return him to them then and he would be free or they may not even believe him and send him back anyway. On the other hand he might not tell them but that would leave him floundering for an answer to where he got the injuries. It was personal but he also lost nothing by telling them. So, with this in mind, he braced himself, took a breath and began.

"My uncle, he blames me for anything that goes wrong, he sometimes beats me or locks me in a cupboard under the stairs without food. This was a really bad one though. He had lost a big business deal earlier and was already drunk when I got home. I tried to sneak past but he noticed me before I could escape."

Euryale and Stheno once again met gazes. They silently acknowledged that such a thing was utterly reprehensible. They agreed that now that they were free of their confinement they would pay a visit to Harry's dear relatives before they did anything else. They wanted to see the world and how it had changed and now they had the chance. Even before they where banished they had never seen much more than their island but they had heard stories of all sorts near and far and longed for the day they could experience it themselves. If things where as Harry here said then they supposed one more travel companion would not be amiss. Then Euryale said it was his uncle who did this. Where were his parents when this was happening?

"Harry, what about your mother and father? Why didn't they do anything about this?"

Harry shuffled his feet a moment before replying, "They're dead - they died when I was one. My aunt and uncle say they died in a car crash while drunk but I don't know what really happened, somehow I don't believe them"

"A car crash? What is a car?" Euryale asked. It was this that reminded Harry that despite their apparent youth the two women in front of him had been out of contact with the rest of the world since the time of the Roman Empire. Before he could reply Stheno interrupted his thoughts "It doesn't matter right now. Right now it's late and we will sleep before setting off tomorrow. Harry has been out of it for a day and we have yet to feed him. I believe there are a few fruit trees nearby that are in season and then we shall sleep." With that she turned and left the cave in search of sustenance for Harry. Euryale blinked, shrugged and then turned to Harry "While my sister is doing that let's see if I can do anything for your wounds"

xxxxx

It wasn't until Harry found himself tucked between the two gorgons as they were going to sleep, with the snake curled up at their feet and comfortably full on a most unusual fruit he did not recognise, that Harry finally thought 'Perhaps things won't be so bad after all'.

As he drifted off to sleep the world outside their cave kept going as it always had and one particular Wizard Marshall sitting alone in the clocktower remembered yesterday's experiment and wondered if anything would come of it, not realising yet that it already had.