Here’s chapter 11 of After Dark
! I hope all of you have enjoyed the story and thanks so much for reading this far! This chapter is sort of the turning point of the story: things really begin to speed up and our “alliance” starts to take action. Please enjoy the chapter! Oh, and thoughts are in italics and Jacob's thoughts are bold italics.
Sadly, I don’t own Harry Potter or Twilight.
Incredible chapter image by the darling Sammm at TDA!
Harry stopped abruptly because he’d expected to see one of the maids standing in front of him with a cart of cleaning supplies.
Not Draco Malfoy.
Harry was frozen in place, his jaw locked and his hand gripping tightly to the door that he held half-open. Malfoy looked up at him through somber eyes but barely met Harry’s gaze before looking back down.
“What’re you doing here?” Harry demanded when he found his voice.
Malfoy looked up at him, “I...I shouldn’t have left. I panicked.”
Harry’s eyes narrowed at Malfoy.
“They just...it just reminded me of everything...” Malfoy continued averting his gaze before looking up through watering lashes. His eyes were glazed slightly, giving Harry insight to the obvious turmoil he was facing within himself.
Harry wasn’t sure whether to believe Malfoy or not. There was a part of him that was screaming for him to slam the door in Malfoy’s face but only after telling him to bugger off for good. But logic insisted that he keep Malfoy around: Hermione was trying desperately to find out if there was any way for a wizard to destroy a vampire but so far there was no, erm, light
way of doing it. She suspected that only dark magic—the kind of magic Voldemort and the Malfoy’s had practiced—would be able to destroy them.
Harry’s chest felt heavy as he continued to stand in front of Malfoy, his entire body locked into place before slowly, and hesitantly, pulling the door wider open and stepping stiffly aside to allow Malfoy entrance into the room.
* * *
It was just after dark when Jacob arrived in the clearing. Shoot, he was late: the entire pack was all ready gathered on either side of Sam. He trotted slowly towards the area where Sam and the rest of the pack were standing. His gaze flickered across the clearing and he spotted the Cullens, Bella and six people he’d never seen before walking gradually towards them. Jacob’s heart increased in pace as they continued forward until they were a little less than a hundred feet in front of the pack.
The rest of the packs’ minds were moving at a hundred miles per hour and Jacob had trouble determining who was speaking.
...good thing we’re in our wolf forms in case something goes wrong...
...can we really trust them?
...I’m not so sure if Sam knows what he’s doing...we know nothing about them and the Cullens
Leah was smug. Finally, the rest of the pack was beginning to doubt Jacob and Sam’s decision to meet with the Cullens and the wizards.
...if the Cullens trust them, I’m sure they’re fine. Edward can read minds and Carlisle’s always been a good judge of character...
Jacob stood on Sam’s right, Seth—the only one with positive thoughts—and Leah to the right of him.
If all of you could keep your thoughts to a minimum for the moment, I need to be able to communicate with Edward.
There were stiff nods from the entire pack as the Cullens and the wizards came closer. Jacob’s head tilted to the side as he examined the group...they were nothing
like he expected...
He’d expected graying, shriveled old men and women with gold, shiny stars etched onto flamboyant robes and triangular hats...not teenagers
barely older than himself wearing normal clothing.
They looked frightened, even; their steps and faces revealing their reluctance to get any closer to the pack of giant wolves.
He looked over the group—a blonde one in the back, his hair a shade close to Carlisle’s; a jumpy, brown haired boy next to a girl with long blonde hair and a smiling face; a bushy haired girl next to a boy with vibrant red hair who kept glancing over at another boy with jet-black, messy hair and... a lightning-bolt scar
How does someone get a scar like that?
They’re wizards, remember?!
Jacob shook his head.
Next to the boy with the odd scar—Jacob noted that he must have been the group’s “leader”, since he was in the front—was an attractive girl with the same vibrant red hair as the tall, gangly boy with freckles splattered across his face.
Jacob’s gaze went to the Cullens next: Alice was holding hands with Jasper who was on the very edge of the group; Carlisle was at the front, closest to the girl with red hair and lightning lad; Esme, Emmett and Rosalie were behind Carlisle while Edward and Bella were on his other side. Jacob exchanged meaningful looks with Bella who looked worried but not frightened.
Jacob snorted: typical Bella.
Edward smiled slightly.
“Sam,” Carlisle greeted, “Thank you for agreeing to meet with us. We greatly appreciate it.”
“Of course; we are willing to hear what you have to say,” Edward responded for Sam.
The wizards glanced around, slightly confused. Leah let a smug thought slip once more before Seth shushed her.
“Our new friends—” Carlisle gestured to the group of teenage wizards, “—have informed us that a prophecy was made about the uprising of a powerful and terrible vampire coven.”
Jacob’s stomach plummeted and murmurs began to break out amongst the pack. Paul was growling.
“We believe that they will be a threat to all of us collectively and to the rest of the world if they are not stopped.”
More angry murmurs and growls.
“What about your vampire government?” Edward asked for Sam.
Carlisle looked back at Bella before locking eyes with Jacob, “We don’t think they will be of any assistance to us...” he said carefully. Jacob felt like he was going to be sick as he looked at Edward, whose gaze was still glued to Sam.
“They don’t approve of our way of life—they don’t understand it and I’m certain they believe us to be a threat to them. They also...don’t approve of Bella staying human. They demand that she either be changed or killed—” Jacob whined, “—but we want to give Bella as much time as she needs.”
Gross! They’re going to bite her!
Sam! They’re going to break the treaty!
Silence, please! Right now, we have the problem at hand to focus on; we will discuss the treaty later—we knew it was coming at any rate. Go on, please.
“Go on,” Edward said and Carlisle nodded.
“We’ve come to request your assistance, Sam, the pack’s assistance in preventing the impending danger that we cannot stop by ourselves.”
Jacob’s eyes closed as growls and snarls erupted. The entire pack was having mixed feelings.
“Will it come to battle?”
“Yes.” Carlisle’s answer brought a look of pure anguish to his face and Jacob groaned internally as he found himself liking Mr. Calvin Klein Model-Doctor even more. Carlisle didn’t want to put any of them in danger and even Sam was admitting to himself that Carlisle didn’t seem the untrustworthy type.
“London.” The entire pack’s gaze snapped over to the bushy-haired girl, who had spoken timidly, though, there was an undertone of determination in her voice.
“Hermione...” the red-haired boy hissed at her but she stepped forward, looking at Carlisle to make sure it was okay. She looked directly at the pack, “We...we understand your hesitation but...” she bit her lip and looked at the boy with the lightning scar and glasses, who was now stepping forward.
“We wouldn’t lie to you about this,” he spoke evenly but desperately as his emerald eyes washed over the pack.
“Are all of you going?” Edward asked and the boy who’d just spoken looked at Carlisle who nodded.
of us are going.”
Jacob felt as if he’d been slapped; he let out a guttural yelp and glared balefully at Edward who looked down.
How dare you! How could you do that to her?! How could you agree to put her in danger like that you damned bloodsucker?!
“She’ll be safe...” Edward said, his voice strained.
Like hell she will be! But you were all ready planning on killing her anyways, so what does it matter to you?!
Edward tensed and crouched, his lips curling back over his teeth as Jacob snarled back at him.
Carlisle rushed forward and held an arm out in front of Edward, Emmett and Jasper were on each side of Edward, tensing in case of a fight.
Jacob—you know I hate giving you orders but you need to calm down!
Jacob continued snarling, insults rolling through his head at a rapid pace. No. He would not let him take her. He would not allow him to lead her to her death—she’d be slaughtered
“Never,” Edward growled and Jacob roared back.
“Stop it!” Jacob could barely hear Bella’s cries over his own growls.
Sam barked. Jacob, stop this now!
Jacob’s growls broke off into guttural gurgles—he had to obey Sam, as much as he hated it.
“Stand—compose yourself, Edward,” Carlisle said softly to Edward who stood back up slowly, his eyes burning at Jacob who glowered back.
“Please...let us continue our discussion...” Edward gritted out and Carlisle nodded to Sam, “You would expect us to come to London with you to fight?”
“Unfortunately, yes,” Carlisle said as Emmett placed a hand on Edward’s shoulder; Alice and Esme were standing with Bella. All of the wizards had taken a step back except for the boy with the scar—who had pushed the girl with red hair behind him—and the girl with blonde hair, although, she was no longer wearing a smile. Seeing the frown on her face was like seeing Carlisle with the expression of anguish he’d worn earlier—somehow, it wasn’t right.
“I’m not sure we can do that...” Edward said for Sam, “I’m not sure we can leave our home unprotected.”
“Of course,” Carlisle nodded, “I would never normally ask this of you, Sam. I don’t want to put you or your family in danger; it was unfair of us to do so.”
Jasper’s eyes were wide with worry but Bella looked relieved. Of course, she would
be more worried about all of them
getting hurt and not herself.
Jacob—don’t. Not now. Later, I promise, later.
Jacob groaned and let his head hang. The conversation was over...for now.
“Give us time to talk through it; we’ll give you our decision later tonight,” Edward said and Carlisle nodded.
“Thank you, Sam. I should not have asked this of you but we’re grateful for your consideration.”
Sam nodded before turning and nudging Jacob roughly.
We’re leaving—we’ll discuss things back in La Push. C’mon, Jake.
Jacob reluctantly tore his eyes from Bella and Edward and allowed himself to be pushed by Sam and Seth towards the forest. He tried hard not to think or listen to the others as the pack made their way back home. His stomach was clenching painfully and he could feel his heart breaking all over again as every memory came flooding back.
Bella. He’d tried to push everything from his mind when he’d left, tried so hard to get over it. But her death seemed even more real now.
They came to a small clearing and sat in a half circle, Sam trotting forward to sit in front of everyone.
I ask that all of you try to contain your thoughts until I invite you to speak. This is a very important decision and it is not one that should be taken lightly in any manner. I know all of you are hesitant to trust the Cullens, but we were able to trust them as comrades in the fight against the newborns and I don’t think that Carlisle would lie to us.
Sam paused, inviting anyone to voice their opinions in a proper
He...he did sound sincere...
The wizards did too and they don’t seem threatening at all.
Paul and Leah both glowered at Embry and Seth who were the first to speak.
bloodsuckers. Sam, they’re gonna break the treaty; they admitted that we can’t trust them!
Sam nodded slightly at Paul’s remark.
But right now, we have to put the treaty issue aside. I agree with Embry and Seth, Carlisle sounded sincere and again, I don’t think he would lie about something as serious as this. And even if he was lying, I don’t doubt that we couldn’t protect ourselves...but do we travel to London to fight and leave our territory unprotected?
Let the Cullens fight this one, Sam; we
need to stay here. This is
our home and we have to keep it protected.
I think that’s the best decision, Jared...
Jacob glowered at Sam.
No! Sam—I can’t! I can’t just stay here while she’s there! I can’t do it! I let her go once, okay? But I can’t this time; Sam, she could be killed.
If you give up, Jacob, then why does it matter? You said yourself that she’s going to be as good as dead anyways.
Jacob shot Paul a dirty look and ignored him entirely.
Jacob, I can’t put the entire pack—and our home—in danger because you want to protect Bella—
Then don’t put the entire pack in danger. Split us up.
Leah growled in outrage at her brother who sat calmly on Jacob’s right. Sam’s eyes narrowed.
You heard me: split us up. Some of us can stay here and protect the reservation and the other part can go to London. Jacob can protect Bella like he wants and the rest of us can make sure that this other group of vampires is destroyed.
Silence fell as everyone sat in shock at Seth’s suggestion. The total point of the pack was to be a whole
, a single unit—not two separated groups.
But Jacob couldn’t deny that he liked Seth’s idea.
It wouldn’t be forever, Sam.
Seth’s thoughts continued on, calmly. Just until the battle’s over. Then we come back and we’re all together again. And Jake can be our leader, for all intents and purposes, while we’re over there. It makes sense since he’s under you.
Jacob caught Sam’s gaze again and their eyes locked as the rest of the pack fell silent once more as the new moon overhead watched invisibly.
* * *
Harry and the rest of the wizards were back at the Cullens’ house, sitting in the expensively decorated living room, the conversation in the clearing still vivid in each of their minds while Jasper and Emmett conversed quickly.
“You think we have a chance?” Emmett asked, glancing over at Jasper whose arms were folded tightly over his chest.
“It all depends on how many of them there are and whether or not they have an army...”
“We took on Victoria’s newborns all right.”
“Yes, but we had the pack and
Victoria didn’t know how to properly train the newborns...” Jasper sighed and glanced at Alice whose eyes were closed in deep concentration.
“I don’t want them getting hurt...” Bella murmured as Edward pulled her closer to him.
“You’re forgetting their strength, Bella.”
“Yeah, Jacob almost took off Edward’s head back there,” Emmett chortled, receiving glares from Edward and Rosalie both.
Harry glanced around at the rest of his friends: Neville was looking worriedly at his feet while Malfoy stared out one of the large windows. Harry noticed that Edward was glaring at the back of Malfoy’s head. Emmett and Jasper noticed as well and looked at Edward imploringly. He hissed something to them so quickly that Harry hardly saw his mouth move—but he did
see the reproachful and threatening looks that appeared instantaneously on Emmett and Jasper’s faces.
Harry’s gaze lingered on Jasper and even though Jasper had nearly attacked Ginny, Harry couldn’t help but feel grateful towards him. To say he, Harry, didn’t have experience in war was a lie—all of the wizards did, but at the time Harry had barely known what was going on. As much as Ron and Hermione and Neville pegged him a leader, he didn’t feel like one. But Jasper...Jasper seemed to know what he was doing and Harry was appreciative of his presence.
Harry broke from his reverie to see Jasper by Alice’s side, her eyes wide and glazed over. Seconds later she blinked and whispered, “I can’t see anything...”
“Yes...” Jasper and Edward both said before the doorbell rang downstairs.
Carlisle left the room to answer the door before coming back moments later with three large, muscular boys and one girl. Harry blinked dazedly as the one in the front stepped forward, shooting a glare at Edward before looking at Carlisle.
“We’re coming with you,” he said, shoving his hands into his sweatpants pockets, “The four of us.”
“Thank you, Jacob,” Carlisle said, his voice thick with gratitude, “We are all extremely grateful for this.”
Jacob shrugged as if it were no big deal but his eyes told a different story. He exchanged glances with Bella before looking towards Harry and the others.
“We should introduce ourselves,” the smallest boy piped up, “I’m Seth Clearwater, this is my sister, Leah. Are you two brother and sister?” he asked, gesturing to Ron and Ginny who both looked surprised by his directness. Emmett guffawed.
“Yes,” Ron responded with a nod.
“We’re the youngest—we have five other brothers.”
“Four...” Ron mumbled.
Ginny’s chin tilted upward, “Fred is still our brother, alive or not.”
Ron flinched at Ginny’s sharp words. An awkward silence began to fall before Harry stood and held out a hand to Jacob.
“I’m Harry Potter, that’s Ron and Ginny, Hermione, Neville, Luna and Draco, by the window there.”
“Jacob Black.” Jacob shook Harry’s hand as a shock jolted through him. Black. Sirius.
Harry’s shock was evident to Ron and Hermione who were both giving him sorrowful looks; Harry barely noticed the extreme warmth of Jacob’s hand as he shook it and barely heard the boy on Jacob’s left introduce himself as Embry Call.
“I’ll order the plane tickets—there’s a flight in the morning,” Esme offered after Harry broke from his thoughts and gave Embry a small smile.
“Um, if it’s all right with you, we’ll just apparate back,” Hermione said, gesturing to Harry and the others.
The “wolves” looked confused and Seth tilted his head to the side.
“We’ll explain it to you on the plane,” Edward murmured to them.
Jacob sneered at him but Seth and Embry merely nodded. Leah had her arms folded over her chest and was watching the wizards warily.
“That’s fine,” Carlisle said.
Harry glimpsed at Hermione, wondering why she wouldn’t just offer to use side-along apparation.
“We’ll leave tonight and meet you at the airport tomorrow,” Hermione said standing and pulling a once lounging Ron up with her.
Esme retrieved a piece of paper from the kitchen and gave Hermione the number to Carlisle’s cell phone.
“We’ll see all of you tomorrow. Be safe,” Carlisle said kindly and the rest of the Cullens and the four members of the pack murmured goodbyes as well.
The rest of the wizards apparated—Malfoy without so much as a glance at the Cullens or the pack members—leaving Harry alone.
“Thank you,” he whispered looking at Edward and then at Jacob who both nodded at him.
* * *
“DON’T YOU EVER DO THAT AGAIN
, DO YOU HEAR
ME RONALD AND GINERVA WEASLEY?”
Harry flinched as Mrs. Weasley’s yells escalated in volume. Mr. Weasley gave Harry and Hermione an apologetic look as he drummed his fingers nervously on the kitchen table.
“Mum, we’re fine
“AND THANK MERLIN
FOR THAT, BUT YOU COULD HAVE BEEN KILLED
“But we weren't—”
” Mr. Weasley said, clearly exasperated. Mrs. Weasley glowered at him but her face began to pale to its normal color as her breathing calmed. The explosion was over; George looked disappointed. “Now, kids...you know it wasn’t wise to go to Forks by yourselves. You should have come to us first. We were so worried when we got the letter from Professor McGonagall...”
Harry flinched once more: he’d forgotten that he’d told Professor McGonagall that Ron, Ginny and Hermione had all gotten clearance to leave Hogwarts from their parents. Obviously, she hadn’t believed him.
...” Mrs. Weasley whispered; all traces of her rage were now gone, replaced with fear.
“I think we need to tell Kingsley about this,” Mr. Weasley murmured, “Harry—you’re absolutely certain
this prophecy is real?”
“Yes,” Harry said firmly, “Professor Trelawney—it was exactly like the time she made the prediction about Wormtail.”
Mr. Weasley nodded gravely, “You said the...the Cullens
are coming tomorrow?”
“Yes, along with four members of a...a pack,” Hermione said.
“Yes. A pack of shapeshifters—they turn into wolves.”
Mrs. Weasley and Mr. Weasley exchanged glances, “You’re sure we can trust them—the Cullens and the pack?”
“I have no doubt that we can,” Harry said, his gaze locking with Ginny’s as he remembered his and Edward’s earlier conversation.
Mr. Weasley sighed and nodded, “I’ll go see Kingsley tonight. Molly—I’m sure they’re hungry.” Mr. Weasley stood before disapparating to the Ministry.
Mrs. Weasley began to busy herself in the kitchen and asked Hermione and Ginny—kindly
—if they would assist her, leaving Harry, Ron and George in the living room.
Ron and George began to talk about the business and the Chudley Cannons, steering the conversation towards lighter topics. But Harry still couldn’t stand it.
He excused himself and went upstairs to Ron’s room. Harry lay down on his bed beside Ron’s and let his mind wander uninhibited.
Malfoy returning...everything Harry wanted to ask him...Edward’s tense glare...
Harry fell into an uneasy sleep and jerked awake hours later, finding his body covered in a thick sheen of sweat. He couldn’t remember his dream but his pounding heart told him it hadn’t been pleasant.
Harry got up languidly and began to dress. He could smell food coming from the Weasley’s kitchen and glancing at the clock he saw that it was one. The Cullens should be arriving soon...Harry glanced out the window and suddenly found himself glad that London happened to be a rainy and cloudy place: the Cullens wouldn’t have any trouble getting around today.
Harry made his way downstairs and smiled half-heartedly at the Weasleys and Hermione who were all ready eating lunch.
“Sorry, mate, I would’ve woken you up...” Ron trailed off as Harry shook his head.
“It’s fine...look, I need to do something really quickly, but I’ll be back soon.”
Hermione, Ron and Ginny all looked at him inquisitively but Harry didn’t explain any further.
Harry nodded his head before disapparating to the Malfoy Manor: he had
to know everything that Malfoy knew about vampires. He had
to know what sort of chance they had.
Looking up at the large house, Harry shuddered. His last time here had been anything but pleasant and even now, when Bellatrix was dead and Lucius locked up, it looked menacing and eerie. Harry jogged up the steps and went to the door. He knocked three times and waited. And waited.
Goosebumps rose on Harry’s arm and his throat contracted as he was gripped with the sense that something was horribly wrong.
Harry yanked his wand from his pocket and unlocked the door before barging inside, the door banging loudly against the wall.
! You promised
Harry’s heart stopped as Malfoy let out a blood curling scream.
Harry lunged forward and took the stairs two at a time, his heart slamming against his chest and ribs. He raced towards the sound of the screams before thrusting open the door to Malfoy’s bedroom.
Malfoy’s eyes were shut as he writhed in agony on the ground, his legs bent at odd angles. Harry frantically looked around and saw that one of the windows was open, the dark curtains fluttering in the wind that carried raindrops inside. They splattered against the floor silently as thunder rumbled deeply.
Harry rushed to Malfoy’s side as he let out another piercing scream. Malfoy was clutching his forearm, holding it tightly to his chest. Harry quickly pushed Malfoy’s grasping hand away and pulled his arm towards him. His insides became lead as his heartbeat pulsed loudly in his ears, encouraged by the woe of Malfoy’s pained cries.
On Malfoy’s forearm, contrasting wickedly with his pale and chilling skin, was a bloody, crescent shaped, bite mark.
Wuh-oh-oh! What’s gonna happen to Malfoy? Guess you'll just have to wait and see! ; ) I hope everyone enjoyed the chapter! Again, I want to thank all of you for reading this far and for being super supportive! : ) Please forgive me for any spelling or grammar errors! Thanks so much for reading and I would really appreciate it if you left a review with your thoughts! What do you think: should Malfoy become a vamp or not? I'd love to know your opinions on the matter. Thanks!