"Where are they?" cried Molly, grabbing Remus's arm.
"Hold on," he muttered, pulling out his wand. "I just need to-"
He muttered a spell under his breath and his wand shot into the air, hovering over his head. "It should shoot out coordinates," he mumbled. "But nothing's happening."
"He'll probably have placed a charm over them," said Arthur. "We aren't going to be able to place them."
"Oh, Arthur," sobbed Molly, clinging to her husband. "Where could they be?"
Ginny screamed as she fell, tripping on a root. Harry turned around, not realizing that she had been so far behind him. "I'm sorry, Gin," he said, turning around and reaching out his hand.
She grabbed it, and he pulled her up off the ground. "Are you alright?" he asked, starting to run again.
"Fine," she said, wincing at her ankle. "Be quiet."
They had lost their companions somewhere in the woods and only hoped that they had stuck together. They had been spilt up when Death Eaters had attacked their camp. The others had ran off in the opposite direction. The woods had been dark, and Ginny and Harry had seen no sign of anyone except a Death Eater who had been on their tail all night. They'd been running since the sun had set and, although it was still dark, they knew it had been at least two hours.
They heard a high-pitched feminine scream pierce the night sky, causing Ginny and Harry to stop in their tracks. "Hermione," she gasped.
It had come from fairly nearby and Harry tried to take off in a run. "Are you mad?" hissed Ginny, clutching his chest. "There have to be at least seven other Death Eaters out here."
"And there's six of us," said Harry, trying to fight against her. "So let's go."
"Harry, please," pleaded Ginny. "You're going to get us killed."
"But Ron and Hermione-"
"There's nothing we can do," interrupted Ginny. "Nothing that won't get us killed. We have to make a plan, Harry."
She had to drag him away from the trees. "They've got two of us," she said, trying to stay calm. "That should keep them away."
"We're just going to leave them to the mercy of-"
"The Death Eaters don't have any mercy in them," said Ginny harshly.
"What is the matter with you?" snapped Harry. "Don't you care at all?"
"We're going to die," said Ginny, her voice cracking. "We're all going to die."
Harry grabbed Ginny's hand again and, without a word, started pulling her through the trees. They hurried along in silence, both trying to make as little noise as possible while at the same time, trying to keep their sanity. It was a game of cat and mouse. At any given moment, they expected one of the Death Eaters to pop out of the trees and curse them both. Harry's grip on his wand was so tight that his knuckles had turned white.
After they had covered quite a bit of ground, the pair finally found what they had been looking for. There was a clearing in which a small brook ran and a cave was set. "This is what we need," muttered Harry. "We can get some rest and figure out what we can do."
"You're acting very calm for someone who only an hour ago was claming that I didn't care."
"Trust me," said Harry, with a bitter smile. "Inside I'm completely panicked."
He looked at her for a moment. Her red hair was tangled around her face and her face was dirtied and bloodied. She winced as she rubbed her ankle. It was bruised and looked slightly swollen. "Do you know how to fix that?" he asked quietly.
"No," said Ginny, rolling her eyes. "I was sick the day that Madame Pomfrey came into Charms to tell us the healing charms for various simple ailments."
"Ironic," muttered Harry. "Well, we could try to-"
Suddenly, Ginny grabbed his forearm as a twig snapped somewhere nearby. "Quiet," mumbled Harry, turning his wand towards the woods.
There was another snap and a brushing of leaves. "Stupefy!" cried Harry. "Stupefy! Stupefy!"
There was a slight gasp and a sound of a body falling. "Neville!" cried a voice.
"Shit," muttered Ginny. "Way to go, Harry."
"Luna, is that you out there?" called Harry.
"Don't be stupid," said Ginny. "Of course it is."
A wide-eyed blonde girl stepped out of the forest, looking terrified. "Harry, why'd you curse us?"
"I thought you were the Death Eaters," said Harry sheepishly. "Is Neville alright?"
"You knocked him out," said Luna, pointing to the trees. "He's over there."
Harry followed Luna over to the woods and the two of them carried Neville over to the cave. "Did you hear Hermione's scream?" asked Harry, when they had gotten Neville situated.
Luna nodded. "We were split up not long after we lost you two," she said. "What happened to Ginny's ankle?"
"I twisted it when we were running," said Ginny. "It's nothing really."
Luna pulled out her wand and muttered a little charm. "It's not healed," she said. "But you shouldn't be able to feel any pain now, even if you run on it."
"If you can heal that cut on his face, we should probably revive him," said Harry, nodding towards Neville.
Again, Luna muttered a charm and Neville's face stopped bleeding. "Ennervate," she said quietly.
Neville's eyes fluttered open and he blearily looked around at his friends. "What happened?" he said hoarsely.
"Harry knocked you out," said Ginny. "By accident, though."
"They got Ron and Hermione," said Neville, not really listening to what she had said. "We saw them get captured."
"We have to go after them now," said Harry, getting up from his seat.
Ginny put out an arm to stop him. "Without a plan?" she asked. "Sure, if you want us to get killed. It's a miracle that we aren't already."
"He's my best friend, Ginny," said Harry angrily, pushing her hand away.
"Maybe you're forgetting," snapped Ginny, stopping Harry in his tracks. "He's my brother."
Harry turned to his friends and then said, "Alright. Let's do this then."
Agnes sat in a darkened cell, wondering how long she had been there. She knew that she had passed out once the Death Eaters had captured her and hadn't woken up until a few hours ago. Or maybe it had been minutes. She didn't know. It all seemed to run together. An aging and very ugly woman had brought her some black soup a little while beforehand. It had been absolutely awful, and it was all Agnes could do to choke it down.
She had needed the nourishment, though, however little it was. The Death Eaters had taken her immeadietly to this cell, where she had been tortured. She would never forget the way that the Cruciatus Curse felt. It was a pain like none she had ever experienced. Her entire being felt as if it were being torn apart by invisible needles. The Death Eater who had performed the curse was a woman with heavily-lidded eyes and dark hair. She had smiled the entire time, as if she found a sick sort of pleasure in causing pain.
After the woman seemed to think that Agnes had had enough, the young girl had been thrown into this cell. Her hair was matted and clinging to her face on account of the sweat that had poured from her during her torturing. She was so badly beaten and bleeding that if she had been able to get find a mirror, she probably would not have recognized her own reflection.
It's all my mom's fault, she thought bitterly. If she hadn't needed to come to England, I wouldn't be here right now.
But in her heart, Agnes knew that nothing would have kept her mother away from Remus for much longer. It hadn't even been clarified that this was the reason Agnes and her mother were being hunted down. For all she knew, it could be some twisted sort of random selection. That's ridiculous. Now I'm going mad.
And it certainly felt like it. A scream rang out through the house, and Agnes nearly jumped a foot off the floor. It was followed by a series of loud banging and cries of pain.
Just when Agnes thought that she would never know what had happened, a door opened and several figures appeared. Two of them seemed to be struggling a bit, each carrying something heavy. Agnes's cell door was opened and two bodies were thrown inside. There was no mistaking them. It was Ron and Hermione.
Agnes looked up at the Death Eaters that had slammed the door behind the couple. The woman who had tormented Agnes sneered at her and then, turning on her heel, left them in darkness, the others following behind her.
With a soft moan, Hermione turned over on her back, and Agnes watched as Ron struggled to make his way over to her. He didn't seem to notice that Agnes was in there until she moved slightly. "Who's there?" asked Ron quickly.
"It's me," she whispered. "Agnes."
"What are you doing here?"
"Having a picnic," snapped Agnes. She shook her head. "I'm sorry," she said. "I'm just exhausted. Is Hermione okay?"
"I can't tell," muttered Ron. "She's not saying anything."
"I'm fine," gasped Hermione, reaching out for Ron's hand.