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Without You by taylorj828
Chapter 1 : The End
Rating: 15+Chapter Reviews: 45

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                                                                The End
(It starts at The End, the end of the battle that is.  Harry, Ron, and Hermione find themselves truly fighting for their lives.)

“Harry!!” Hermione’s voice screamed out in the heavy darkness.

“Ron, we have to help him!” she called out to her right, watching as a Death Eater crumpled under Ron’s spell.

“I thought he told us not to help, he had to do it alone!” Ron yelled back, torn between their options.

“We have to!” she screamed, dodging a stray spell, then running towards Ron and grabbing his hand.  The two ran forward in the direction they had last seen Harry disappear, their wands outstretched, and hands clasped together.  They were in a frantic race to avoid spells, escape Death Eaters, and find Harry while they still had time.

Did he know then?

In the distance they could hear grunting and cursing, and knew the battle had long begun, the battle only Harry could end. 

“Come on, come on!” Hermione whispered hurriedly.  She pulled Ron down with her to hide behind a large boulder, not far from the dueling wizards.  She could see Lord Voldemort’s ugly, red-eyed, snake like face.  And she could see Harry’s own scarred face straining in effort as the brother wands were linked in a battle of power.  

“Ron, can’t we both hit Voldemort with a curse and help Harry gain the upper hand?” she planned quietly, thinking through it in her mind.

“It might work, it might buy Harry a bit of time anyway,” Ron’s mind raced.

“Oh my count, we’ll jump out and both stupefy him!” Hermione instructed.  Harry’s face now seemed in agony, his legs shaking under the prolonged strain.  Voldemort looked as though he could feel his victory coming.

“1… 2… 3!” Hermione whispered loudly.  The two sprang up from the rock and in their loudest most powerful voices called, “STUPEFY!” 

Voldemort was hurled back slightly as the connection between wands broke, but he was far from being stunned or defeated.

“I told you two to stay back!” Harry nearly screamed, as lightening fast images raced through his mind, pictures of Ron and Hermione both dead.  He had sworn to himself to protect them.  But there was no time to lose, because Voldemort had hardly been stupefied.

“Crucio!” Voldemort bellowed quickly at Harry, who instantly collapsed to the ground, writhing in the most intense pain known, or perhaps even unknown, to mankind.  It was known and hated by Harry.

“Stop it, stop it!” Hermione screamed like Harry had never heard her before.  Still Voldemort held Harry in the Cruciatus curse.  Harry wondered if he would pass out from the pain and the pressure in his skull.  He could vaguely hear Hermione continuing to scream at Voldemort, and he mentally begged her to remember her wand, use a spell, and end his torment.

“Expelliarmus!” Ron yelled, pointing his wand at Voldemort.  The Cruciatus curse was lifted from Harry, and again Voldemort was stunned backwards, struggling to retain his wand.  But the most powerful wizard in the world was not to be easily overtaken. 

Harry rose to his feet, willing every muscle to fight against the pain and agony.  He had to finish this.  He was losing time and energy, and his friends were now in even more danger.  He had to try the unforgivable Avada Kedavra curse.  Without another thought, hoping to cast the spell before Voldemort would undoubtedly cast his, Harry bellowed the curse with all his might.  At the same time, the cold, high pitched, evil voice cast his own Avada Kedavra spell.

“It’s not working!” Hermione cried.

“Why do their wands keep connecting?” Ron called out to her.

And then they heard, “Stupefy!”  An unnoticed Death Eater had approached their battle.  Ron was down on the ground, helpless.

“Expelliarmus!” Hermione yelled, but her spell was blocked.  Hermione and the Death Eater began to battle it out and soon Ron had regained consciousness and was helping ward off the Death Eater.  Spells and curses were flying in every direction, and one unlucky curse found its place in breaking the Priori Incantatum between Harry and Voldemort. Then, in one swift and simultaneous movement, Hermione cast the final spell that ended the Death Eater.  Everything was passing by so fast, but at some moments whole hours seemed to extend between words and spells. 

Harry faced Voldemort.  Something in his being told him this was it.  But as he watched his enemy’s face, the gaze shifted, and without a moment to think, Voldemort’s wand was trained on Ron and Hermione, who were turning from their defeat of the Death Eater to gaze upon Harry and Voldemort. 

It was as though the thinking that normally existed before actions had vanished, and all that existed in Harry now were his reflexes.

Avada Kedavra!” Voldemort bellowed, trained upon Ron and Hermione, as their eyes grew large in that one single instance. 

Avada Kedavra!” Harry echoed only a millisecond behind Voldemort, wand pointed evenly upon his enemy, as he jumped with all his might, hoping to throw his body in front of Ron and Hermione, in time to catch Voldemort’s unforgivable curse.  The wands did not connect; the curses seemed to pass by each other like two trains headed in different directions.  Harry felt an explosion in his chest as his body fell on top of Ron and Hermione, who were forced down underneath his weight.  He was burning, he couldn’t breathe, and he was losing feeling.  His final glimpse before all went black, was the sight of Voldemort falling behind the brightest light, purest white light, Harry had ever seen.  The ground seemed to ripple underneath him, but all was then still, black, dark, finished.

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