Chapter 18 : Of The Elixir, Duels and The Beginning of the End
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A/N: If you have been paying close attention to my author's notes (and I imagine you've been reading them all with rapt interest) you'll notice that I have amalgamated (I like that word) two of the final chapters into one. This is simply because they would've been too short and this one would have ended just as Voldy threw the first curse in the final battle. For once, I have decided to have mercy and not end on a cliffhanger. So read on, enjoy and tell me what you think.
As they walked into the ancient castle, their senses on high alert, Harry and his allies were immediately hit by an astonishing sight. The smell of death and charred flesh hung heavy in the air and in the grand entrance hall before them there lay the destroyed corpses of three massive Dragons and at least thirty Griffins. Scanning the room, Harry saw no signs of living creatures and his magical senses confirmed this so, swallowing the bile rising in his throat, he pushed on, leading his troops to the single door that stood at the end of the hall. Pausing for a second to ready himself for action, he flung the door open and quickly strode inside.
As soon as the door was open, Harry was met by a deafening SCREEEEEEECH as dozens of Griffins let loose their distinctive battle cry and charged the room’s invaders. Drawing his sword and infusing it with magic, Harry expertly cut down the first of the Beasts to meet him, before blasting the second across the room. The voices of his dark sub-conscious bellowed their orders in his ear and, again, he embraced them, making good use of the shot of adrenalin and magic they provided by thrusting out his hand and flinging a thousand razor-sharp ice-bullets at the attacking beasts. The elemental projectiles pierced even the resistant hides of the magical monsters and sent a good number of them crashing to the ground as Harry beheaded another with the sword of Gryffindor.
The Lycans fought savagely and, though Harry saw one go down under a hail of teeth and claws, his brethren around him carried on as if nothing had happened. The Order too fought well and, with Harry using his sword and powerful magic in tandem to great effect, the number of Griffins quickly dwindled and the remainder disappeared in a huge fire ball of Mr. Potter’s creation. With the room clear, the Harry led the Order soldiers and the Lycans across the room to the door on the other side.
Once again, Harry stopped and signalled that everyone should be ready, before opening the door. This time, however, there was no apparent threat. The chamber beyond was significantly smaller than the last and stood completely empty, with not even a corpse to show Voldemort’s trail. Rather worryingly, Harry noted, there also wasn’t a door at the other end and the only way in and out seemed to be the way from which they came. Walking into the centre of the room to investigate, he was suddenly halted when a voice cried out;
Whipping round, the young wizard dropped into a duelling stance, his wand ready to strike down anyone or anything that might be foolish enough to challenge him. But he found nothing. Neither man nor monster, bar those he had led inside, stood within the room and Harry was starting to question Remus’ sanity before the older man reached out a hand before him. A pulse spread across a wall of nothingness from where the werewolf’s hand had stopped, like a stone dropping into a pool and, as he allowed his magic to expand outwards, Harry sensed the magical signature of a powerful force-field between him and his comrades.
He was about to start bringing the barrier down when his heart suddenly dropped; an all too familiar feeling was spreading through Harry’s veins as his blood turned ice cold and his breath turned to fog before his eyes. Bolstering his mental shields, he turned around, but to his shock, found not a Dementor, but a grey mist slowly seeping through the walls. As the fog grew thick around him the effects increased tenfold, as if a thousand Dementors were feeding on his soul and the young warrior was filled with an all encompassing hopelessness and despair. Pushing the depression away with all his might, Harry focused on the happiest memory he could recall and, with power in his voice, cried;
An ethereal stag burst from Harry’s wand and galloped around the room, but he realised, with panic in his heart, that the patronus was not having an effect. Prongs cantered uselessly around the chamber, with nothing to pierce with its razor sharp antlers and Lily Potter’s dying screams began to ring in her son’s ears. With a flash of green light, they disappeared, as the room around him faded from view, only to be replaced by the image of his Godfather, the man he had known for so little time but whom he had loved like a father, his back arching gracefully as he slowly fell through the veil of death, never to emerge again.
Again and again Harry Potter’s worst and darkest memories played before his eyes, as clearly as the day they had occurred and, as any semblance of happiness or hope disappeared from the young wizard’s heart, his legs gave way and he collapsed, shivering, to his knees. After what seemed like hours of the mental torture, the scene changed and the room he had entered not ten minutes ago reappeared before him. The fog of despair started to lift as, before his very eyes, there materialised his parents, who then walked towards him. But as they got closer, Harry noticed a disgusted look plastered upon his mother and father’s faces.
“You are such a disappointment Harry!” His Mum screamed, revulsion in her tone. “You are nothing but a murderer, no better than Voldemort!”
Harry felt his breath hitch and his heart shudder and turned to his father, with his last shred of hope.
“I have no son.” James Potter said simply.
The Potters retreated but at that moment, Ginny appeared beside them and looked upon Harry with the same look as his parents. For an eternity, the Boy Who Lived could only watch as a procession of those he loved most emerged from the mist to tell him what a disappointment he was, to reel off a list of his flaws and to look down on him as if he was less than scum. Mr and Mrs Weasley, Remus, Sirius, Thane, Ron, Hermione, the twins and Hagrid all spat insults at him with revulsion in their eyes, repealing any love they might once have had for him, while all the while, Harry’s worst memories played in his ears and his heart was filled with nothing but hopelessness and grief. Lying on the floor, shivering against the cold, he tried to drift away but, try as he might, he couldn’t block out the voices of his parents and Sirius blaming him for their deaths, he couldn’t block out Ginny saying that she had never loved him and he couldn’t block out the others as they told him to give in; that he could never defeat Voldemort and that he had become corrupted by evil.
After what seemed like years, as the last glint of light faded from behind Harry’s usually brilliant emerald eyes, the crowd of his loved ones parted and into the mist walked a medieval knight.
“Harry Potter,” the knight began in a booming voice, “I come before you to offer you a choice. There are three doors behind me, three routes which you may decide to take. The first, to your left, will lead you to your death, where you will be reunited with your loved ones in the hereafter. The door to your right will transport you safely home, wherever it is you feel most safe. To get through the final door, the one in the middle, you would have to duel me and beyond it lay hardship and suffering and, eventually, the Elixir a Lumina. Which path will you take?”
With dead eyes and a heart still heavy with darkness and despair, Harry looked to his left, to the door that would release him from his torture and his responsibility; the door that would reunited him with his parents and Sirius in the next great adventure. He was about to tell the knight his decision when he heard a sound break through the deafening fog of depression that filled his mind as the Dementor-effect still hung heavy in the air. With great effort, the young wizard turned his head to see Remus, Thane and the Order stood screaming at him through the force-field, which had apparently blocked the mist. Concentrating hard, Harry managed to make out a few words and realised what his friends were trying to tell him. They wanted him to push on and, with this little bit of reinforcement, he felt the voices in his mind stir and awaken once more. They too wanted him to choose the middle door, to destroy the knight stood in his way and go on to capture the power of the Elixir a Lumina.
“I choose the middle door,” Harry croaked out. “I choose the Elixir a Lumina.”
“Very well,” the knight responded.
At the ancient soldier’s words, the thick mist disappeared from around Harry, taking with it the illusions of his loved ones and the freezing temperature. With the Dementor-effect gone, the young wizard was able to push away the lingering depression and focus on his determination and his ultimate goal.
“We duel with swords and swords alone,” the knight spoke up once more, drawing a broadsword from the scabbard attached to his suit of armour. “The punishment for using magic will be most severe.”
Harry merely nodded before drawing his open weapon, his hands tingling with the power of the legendary sword of Gryffindor. With not another word, the knight aggressively lunged forward, swinging his heavy weapon with skill and precision as Harry was immediately forced on to the defensive. Silently thanking Thane with all his heart, he parried the first few blows and ducked under a third before launching an attack of his own. For some time this continued, the adversaries evenly matched as they spun and whirled around each other in a deadly dance, occasionally hitting the other with a glancing blow but never gaining any real advantage.
Harry grew steadily more aggressive in style as he grew frustrated with the stalemate and as the whispers roared at him to kill the knight that stood in the way of his glory. But every move he made seemed to be anticipated and every strike was blocked dodged or parried by the armoured man. Soon, Harry’s frustration got the better of him and the voices of the dark side of his psyche screamed; ‘Use your magic! Destroy him!’ Harry more than willingly complied, thrusting out his hand and releasing a powerful blasting curse, which struck the knight in the chest and blew him to smithereens.
For a second, Harry paused, anticipating some sort of retaliation for his breach of the rules, but there seemed to be none; the path to the middle door was now clear. He was just taking his first step forward, however, when there was a flash of light before him and in his way, there appeared two knights, identical to the first and both clutching swords. Harry just had time to feel his heart drop before the soldiers simultaneously sprung forward in a well choreographed attack and he was forced to defend desperately, fighting for his life.
The battle recommenced, but this time Harry was out-skilled, almost overwhelmed by the threat posed by the two knights. He was forced to remain almost entirely on the defensive, giving everything he had to simply stay alive as he blocked, dodged and rolled around the room. Every now and then he was caught by one of the blades and felt his skin tear as it was sliced by steel, but he didn’t allow himself to falter at the pain as he knew to do so would be a deadly mistake.
For quite some time Harry fought and he felt himself starting to tire, as the knights attacked him just as vigorously as they had to begin with. He knew he had to do something fast. Moving all the time, he looked out for an opening and, when he found it, he threw in all his chips. Kicking out, Harry caught one of the knights in the shin to give himself a couple of seconds, before turning quickly and striking at the second knight with all his strength. His attack was blocked but the force of it sent the knight stumbling backwards, allowing Harry to turn back to the first knight to block his blade. After catching the blow on his sword, he grabbed the hilt of the knight’s weapon and used it as a pivot to swing him around, right in to the path of the second knight, who struck him in the neck with a deadly blow.
With one enemy down, Harry was able to attack some more and, with renewed vigour, allowed the voices of his mind to spur him on. Using everything Thane had taught him, the young wizard fought like he had never fought before, ignoring his pain as he came at the knight with attack after attack. It was not long before the soldier was overwhelmed and, pushing his sword upwards, Harry then thrust his blade right through the knight’s chest. The armoured man stumbled slightly before falling to the ground and, like his comrade before him, disappearing into nothingness.
As soon as the second knight was felled, the force-field holding the Order and the Lycans back faded away and Remus and Thane sprung forward to envelop Harry in a hug. Harry smiled and, after he was released, allowed himself a moment to regain his breath and his composure, quickly healing his more serious injuries before, with a nod to his brothers and sisters in arms, opened the door and walked through to the next room.
This room was not empty. The moment Harry walked inside, he and his allies were set upon by a veritable army of Acromantula. The giant spiders ran towards them at speed and Harry was forced to conjure a huge wind to blow them back and stop himself and the Order from being overwhelmed, at the same time shouting at the men, women and beasts under his command to aim for the creatures’ underbellies. The Lycans pounced forward and began to rip into the beasts with their teeth and claws as the soldiers of the Order of the Phoenix shot off their chosen spells. Harry’s curse of choice was the killing curse and, as the voices constantly whispered their encouragement, the young man smiled and shot off deadly green bolts of light like machine-gun fire, leaving a trail of Acromantula bodies piled high as he steadily made his way across the room.
The spiders seemed to see that Harry was their deadliest enemy and started to attack him en masse, grouping together to pounce as they hoped to overwhelm him. Switching tactics, Harry almost lazily released a huge stream of fire to envelop the attacking beasts, which screeched in pain as they were burned alive. The Order and the Lycans soon made it across the room and to the door on the other side. Harry noticed a knowing smile pass between the King and Queen of the Lycans while the majority of the Order avoided his eyes. With a small frown, but his eyes still shining with power and determination, the heir of Merlin opened the door and proceeded on through the castle.
Finding themselves in a wide corridor, many of the Order’s soldiers retched and quickly averted their gaze from the disembowelled corpses of five giants, which lay between them and a grand staircase. Reaching out with his magic, Harry sensed no live beasts or beings in the room and gave his allies a quick nod before striding forward, vanishing one of the bodies to clear the way and leading his troops up the stairs. The staircase led to a corridor, which opened up into a huge, grand hall, finely decorated with ancient art and furnishings of gold. None of this was noticed by the army of light, however, as they stared in shock and terror at the sight before them.
In the magically expanded hall there stood a dozen massive Nundu, panting their disease-carrying breath as their evil eyes stared fixedly at the witches, wizards and Lycans that dared enter their domain. Above them, twice as many Hungarian horntails swooped through the air grunting in rage and releasing occasional bursts of flames as they too looked upon the uninvited guests. Finally, there stood a further five giants, which stood guard over the ornate, oak door at the other end of the hall.
Looking upon this, Harry laughed, muttering; “Very clever”. Thane and Remus both turned to look at him incredulously, as if questioning whether he’d finally lost it, as their eyes too were filled with hopelessness and fear.
“Don’t worry boys and girls,” Harry spoke up. “I’ll take care of this one.”
As the Boy Who Lived twirled his wand in a complex motion and muttered a long incantation under his breath, the Order of the Phoenix and their Lycan allies could only watch in amazement as the Nundu and Dragons that filled the room disappeared before their eyes.
“I have to give it to my ancestors,” Harry began, “that was a pretty impressive illusion charm, but I like it better this way, don’t you?”
“Much better,” Thane breathed, still in shock. “The Nundu and Dragon look is so last year.”
Harry smiled and strode forwards to meet the five giants, stood growling at him as they raised clubs protectively and blocked the door.
“I don’t suppose you’ll let us pass if we ask nicely?” Harry asked, smiling at the giants.
In answer, one of them lunged forward in attack, only to be flung back and disarmed before it moved so much as a yard.
“That’s what I thought,” Harry spoke once more.
The giants didn’t survive much longer. As his comrades vanished the corpses of the huge beasts, Harry paused for a second and closed his eyes in concentration as he reached out with his magical senses. After a couple of minutes, in which the rest of the Order and the Lycans looked on in apprehension, Harry opened his eyes and smiled slightly.
“We’re close,” He said. “Very close. We just need to get past yet more Griffins and some Sphinxes in the next room and we’re there.”
There was a small groan from the Order soldiers but Harry smirked. He allowed himself another moment to draw the entirety of his vast magical reservoir to his fingertips, relishing the prospect of another fight as power started to pour off him and his eyes started to glow, his mind finally at peace as he fully embraced the whispers and he heeded their call to kill.
Flinging the doors open, Harry was met by the screeching battle cry of the Griffin as the powerful beasts started to run and swoop towards them. The young warrior didn’t miss a beat and immediately threw himself into the action. With a sweep of his wand, he conjured a lion and multiplied it by ten, before setting the beasts on to the Griffins as a distraction. As he was working, one Griffin had snuck up upon him and Harry didn’t sense the attack until the very last minute. Forced to act quickly, he transformed into his Gryon form and rolled with the blow as the Griffin pounced on him, before the flinging the beasts off him and taking to the air.
Turning back into his human self, Harry supported himself on a gust of wind and released a shockwave of magic to repel the Griffins flying towards him. Having bought himself a little time, the young wizard then released a torrent of curses and hexes to destroy the creatures swarming all around him, mixing killing curses with elemental magic and hitting anything closing in on him with an Extrudo curse. As the room started to clear, Harry lowered himself to the ground and sent a powerful exploding hex forwards to clear the way to the door, blowing up half a dozen of the beasts before continuing forward as he and his allies finished the rest of them off.
Walking up to the door, Harry felt a tingle in his scar to tell him that Voldemort was nearby and raised his wand to kill the four sphinxes guarding the entrance to the chamber containing the Elixir a Lumina. However, something stopped him, a whim, which briefly overpowered the blood-lust that had taken hold of him and he faltered. His eyes met individually with those of each sphinx before, as one, the human-lion hybrid creatures bowed and stepped aside, to allow him free access to the door. Feeling the weight of destiny on his shoulders, Harry took a deep breath in and turned to his comrades.
“This is it.” He said, before, with a flick of his hand, he opened the doors and strode inside.
The chamber that met Harry and his troops was bigger than any room they had ever seen and was completely unfurnished and undecorated, with nothing but stone walls, floor and ceiling all around, except for one, small area of wall where the Dark Lord Voldemort stood staring at writing too far away for Harry to read. For a thousand years this room had stood completely empty, but now there stood within it a dark army; scores of Death Eaters, Nosferatu and Dementors, gathered in fighting stances, ready to engage the army of light that had just entered the room.
“You still stand behind your slaves Tom?” Harry cried out as Voldemort finally turned to look at them. “Even with the Ritual of Eternal damnation, are you still too afraid to engage me alone?”
Lord Voldemort simply smiled a cold, evil smile, looking other worldly with the effects of his latest ritual, with markings carved on to his bald, pale head and a visible aura of black magical power.
“Allow Potter through.” He commanded, his snake-like hiss having an echo to it that somehow made it even more sinister.
The Dark Lord’s servants parted to allow Harry a clear path to their master, which the young wizard took, walking slowly but purposefully through the masses and towards his nemesis. As he passed the last Death Eater, the army closed ranks once more, separating Harry from his troops as his gaze bore into that of Voldemort.
“Potter is to be left to me, but as for the others; destroy them.”
At this command, the Death Eaters, Dementors and Nosferatu all sprang into action, engaging their foes in mortal combat. But Harry took no notice of the ferocious battle behind him, his eyes still staring into Voldemort’s as magical power crackled at his fingertips and the voices of his mind roared in his ear.
“Only one of us is going to leave this room,” Harry spoke.
It was a statement of fact and Voldemort inclined his head slightly to show his agreement before, as one, both wizards raised their wand in a formal salute and bowed. The air around them was heavy with magic as it radiated palpably from the two powerful wizards and everything around them seemed to fade away as their focus remained on each other and they both dropped into duelling stances. Then, almost quicker than the human eye could follow, Lord Voldemort whipped forward, striking out with his wand with a cry of; “Avada Kedavra!”
Harry quickly spun out the way of the Killing curse and immediately returned fire with an exploding curse sent at the Dark Lord’s feet. The ground blew apart, sending shrapnel flying but Voldemort remained unscathed and, as Harry fired a flurry of spells towards his nemesis, he conjured an apparition shield to swallow them all. On alert as the tear in space-time closed, Harry’s eyes widened as several rips opened around him and he was bombarded from all sides by his own curses, followed immediately by a powerful jet of fire.
Diving to the ground, Harry quickly rolled out the way of his own spells, but sensed that he was being strafed by the Dark Lord’s powerful elemental flame. Rolling to his feet, he conjured a huge tsunami of water, which engulfed the fire about to consume him before rushing towards Lord Voldemort. As it drew close, however, the water parted and flowed around the Dark wizard before disappearing entirely and he blocked with apparent ease, the pure light magic sent courtesy of Harry’s wand before taking to the skies with a rush of wind.
From there, Riddle conjured a baseball-sized globe of pure Dark magic, which he sent flying towards his enemy at speed. Recognising the magic, Harry conjured a large silver shield, which he reinforced with pure light magic and ducked behind as the black ball of light exploded outwards with fearsome power. The pure dark magic rushed over Harry, but the young wizard remained standing and was about to counter when he felt the first stirrings of coldness within his veins.
Looking upwards, Harry’s jaw dropped in shock as Voldemort, eyes glowing blood red, conjured a dozen Dementors around him and, seemingly unaffected by their presence, sent them flying at Harry. Recovering quickly from his surprise, the young wizard searched his mind for the happiest memory he had and forced the power of that positive thought into an ethereal guardian with a cry of “Expecto Patronum!” While he did this, he continued to move, never staying in one place for more than a second lest he be hit by an attack from his enemy above.
Surprisingly, though, this never came and as Harry’s patronus dispersed the Dementors, he looked up to find Voldemort’s gaze not on him, but straight up. Floating eerily, the Dark Lord had his arms stretched towards the heavens and was chanting a long, Latin incantation, his snake-like hiss echoing throughout the chamber. Harry was about to make the most of his apparent distraction, when Voldemort suddenly brought his arms down and, with one last bellowed incantation, Killing curses started to rain down from the sky.
Harry immediately threw himself to the ground, desperately rolling, jumping and diving to avoid the deadly bolts of green magic as his magical senses guided him. Soon, however, the downpour became too much and the young warrior, while still dodging the curses, conjured up as much of his power as he could and slashed his wand above his head with a shout of;
A huge apparition shield appeared above Harry’s head and started to swallow the deadly green beams. He knew that he wouldn’t be able to hold it for long, however, and that he needed to distract the Dark Lord for long enough to launch a counter-attack. With the dark whispers of his mind still feeding his magic, Harry reached out to the elements and conjured a huge gust of wind, which he slammed into Voldemort, in the hope of blasting him into the nearest wall.
The Dark Lord managed to stop himself before he hit the stone wall, but was distracted long enough to bring his chanting to an end and Harry allowed the rip to heal with relief as the Killing curses stopped raining down and Lord Voldemort lowered himself to the ground. As soon as Riddle’s feet had found terra firma, Harry opened the second rip before him and immediately bombarded the Dark wizard with a torrent of his own curses. Voldemort was ready, however, and quickly raised a silver shield to deflect the Killing curses away.
Harry made good use of the distraction and, as Voldemort defended himself against his own spells, conjured a perfect illusion of himself where he stood. At the same time, he performed a disillusionment charm and dropped, invisible, to the ground before taking aim with his wand. As the Dark Lord turned upon the fake Harry and fired a powerful jet of fire, the real deal conjured a sword behind his enemy’s back before summoning it towards him. For just a second, Harry thought his plan had worked, but at the last moment, with a small gesture of his hand, Voldemort conjured an apparition shield behind himself, which immediately swallowed the sword and Harry was forced to roll out of the way as the second rip appeared directly above him and the blade buried itself into the ground.
The younger wizard quickly sprung to his feet, but was immediately forced to go on the defensive as he was set upon by a massive tempest of fire. Taking control of the flame, Harry gathered it together and shot the fireball at Voldemort, who vanished it with a flick of his wrist. Thrusting his wand forward, Voldemort then released a large pulse of pure dark magic, which sped towards Harry, who, forced to act quickly, surrounded himself with pure light magic and allowed it to pass through him.
The Boy who lived was unhurt by the attack but was immediately hit by a powerful gust of wind, which threw him off his feet and into the air. Harry was caught off balance and, as he struggled to right himself in the air, sensed yet another bombardment of dark curses heading his way. Reaching out a hand, he propelled himself away from the deadly magic, but was glanced by a stray curse, which opened a large gash on his arm and sent him spinning to the ground. Ignoring the pain, he just managed to get his feet underneath him and landed upright, his gaze finding that of Voldemort once again.
Harry realised that the distance between them was playing right into the Dark Lord’s hands. Riddle held the superior power, but Harry was quick and skilled in avoiding attacks and so, coming to a decision, the younger wizard heightened his magic senses before conjuring a thick, black smokescreen, which enveloped the room. Harry then propelled himself forward, dodging out the way as he sensed Voldemort blindly firing curses at him, but never slowing down as he got ever closer to the Dark Lord. As he felt himself nearing his nemesis, Harry unsheathed the sword of Gryffindor and infused it with magic before swinging it gracefully towards the Dark Lord’s neck. At that moment, however, the smoke cleared and steel met steel as Harry’s sword was blocked by Voldemort’s conjured blade, infused with pure dark magic.
Riddle made good use of Harry’s surprise and immediately pushed onto the offensive, reigning down blows while Harry blocked, parried and dodged, as he attempted to regain his footing. Voldemort showed astonishing speed and agility as the two duelled and Harry felt sure that the Ritual of Eternal damnation had played a part in that. The two seemed to be quite evenly matched and neither managed to sustain any sort of advantage as every attack was dodged or blocked, the two wizards twirling elegantly around each other.
Voldemort was not, however, averse to fighting dirty and, as Harry went on the offensive, the Dark Lord crumbled the ground before the younger wizard, causing him to lose balance and stumble. Voldemort pressed the advantage but Harry used the momentum and threw himself forward before rolling back up to his feet and spinning around to continue the duel. Riddle continued to attempt to distract his opponent, sending out curses with his left palm and using the elements to gain the upper hand while Harry tried to do the same. The younger wizard was holding his own and had twice come close to removing the Dark Lord’s head when he sensed a sudden rush of magic around his feet. Elemental flames started to rise from the ground and, though Harry attempted to subdue them while focusing his concentration on his blade, he was overpowered and he felt his left leg burn. He was forced to turn his attention to the fire and dowse it with water before it consumed him completely and this allowed Voldemort the chance to slash forward his sword, catching Harry in the shoulder and opening a wound.
Harry cried out in shock but forced down the pain and managed to block the Dark Lord’s follow up attack before, fuelled by anger and pain, he reached out to the elements and caused the earth beneath Voldemort’s feet to shake violently. Batting Riddle’s blade to the side, Harry then jutted out Gryffindor’s sword, catching his nemesis on the cheek and drawing blood. The younger wizard quickly brought his sword back to deliver a deadly blow but Voldemort, snarling with rage, unleashed a powerful shockwave of pure dark magic and blasted him away.
Harry landed hard on his back but jumped immediately back to his feet, only to see Voldemort’s sword flying his way. His abilities as seeker coming in handy, he deftly caught the blade in his left hand before flinging both it and his own sword back at Voldemort, using magic to make them fly at speed. Riddle dodged them both but Harry had prepared for this eventuality and the weapons curled back around and homed in on their target, flying like bullets towards the Dark Lord’s back. Just as they were about to reach him, however, Voldemort raised a wall of earth from the ground and the swords found themselves buried deep inside.
As his enemy defended himself, Harry unleashed a powerful exploding curse, before turning his wand to the side. While Voldemort conjured a shield, Harry summoned a large rock from the floor of the castle and flung it into the curses path. The two collided and the explosion that resulted rocked the chamber, ferociously blasting Lord Voldemort backwards through the air.
Harry was about to push forward when he felt magic fill the air and suddenly dozens of tigers appeared on the ground, while the upper reaches of the room were filled with dragons. Reaching out with his magical senses, Harry found, as he had suspected, most of the creatures to be an illusion and quickly negated the effect. Even with this done, however, he still found himself faced with three circling tigers and, as he was about to strike them down, sensed a Killing curse heading his way. Reaching his arms forward, Harry made use of a spell of his own creation and, tearing his arms apart, split the Killing curse in two before sending each of the pieces to end the life of a tiger. The final jungle cat started to pounce, but as it did, the sword of Gryffindor dislodged itself from the wall of earth and was sent flying at the beast, taking off its head as Harry turned to Voldemort and fired a stream of pure light magic.
Voldemort was ready for him, however, and the attack was met with a continuous jet of pure dark magic. Unwilling to find himself in that kind of battle again, Harry ducked out the way, only to find himself tumbling to the floor as thick vines sprung up from the ground and wrapped themselves round his legs. Harry quickly cut away the plants and rolled to his feet, avoiding as he did a spear of ice that had been sent his way, but this brought him right into the path of another spell and the young wizard was unable to dodge the Cruciatus curse.
Agony tore violently through every cell of Harry’s body as he fought desperately against the torture, to keep moving so as to avoid the curses that were doubtlessly heading his way. But it was not enough. The unspeakable pain of the unforgivable curse had caused the young wizard to falter and he was struck in the chest with a blasting curse, which sent him flying away from the Dark Lord. He landed on the ground some distance away, the end of the Cruciatus curse leaving no relief from pain as he felt bones break in his back and a gaping wound open up on his torso.
Knowing that to give in to the pain even for a second would mean forfeiting his life, Harry fought against it. Conjuring up as much power as he could muster, he forced his magic to heal the worst of his injuries and leave him able to continue the fight. The young wizard’s wounds miraculously started to heal but, even as they did, the ground around him shook violently and, just as Harry felt his energy starting to return, the floor beneath him opened up. The ground swallowed him completely and he felt it closing in on him, crushing him to death.
With as much power as he could, Harry blasted out the ground above him and propelled himself upwards to escape the earth. Landing on his feet, he then reached down to the floor and broke away a huge missile of rock before aggressively flinging it at his nemesis. Voldemort caught the rock when it was a couple of feet away from him, however, and threw back at Harry, following it up with an onslaught of Killing curses.
The younger wizard magically cleaved the rock in two allowing the pieces to fall either side of him, before conjuring a shining silver shield to block the bolts of deadly green light. But, even as he maintained the constant assault of Killing curses, Voldemort reached up with his left hand and once again did the impossible, he conjured Dementors. Ten of the vile beasts swooped Harry’s way and he was forced to take evasive action from the spells as he fought off the soul-sucking demons. Dodging and rolling out the way, Harry conjured a patronus to quickly see off the Dementors, before turning to face Voldemort once more.
The Dark Lord continued with his barrage of dark curses but Harry made no move to regain his shield. Instead, he kept dodging out the way, picking up speed as he did so until he was running towards Voldemort. Bringing his wand to bear as he broke out into a sprint, Harry returned fire with his own torrent of powerful curses and the Dark Lord too chose to dodge away from the spell rather than raise his own protection. Soon, the two wizards were running full pelt at each other, each unleashing an onslaught of curses and hexes while dodging those of the other.
Harry noticed Voldemort’s feet leave the ground, even as he kept running and the Dark Lord started to gain the advantage of height as he supported himself on pockets of air. The younger wizard followed course and ran into the air, not even faltering as he got ever closer to his nemesis, the whispers of his mind fuelling him as he unleashed his anger upon Voldemort. Soon, they were so close that seeing the curses before they reached him was becoming difficult, avoiding them even more so, but rather than raising a shield, Harry reached out his palm behind him and propelled himself forward. As he did so, he unleashed a powerful wave of raw magic and, as the two wizards clashed, they were exploded violently away from each other.
Both men managed to catch themselves in the air and Harry was about to launch into yet another offensive when the ground below him began to shake yet again. As he looked down, lava exploded upwards towards him and the young warrior was forced to fire a powerful jet of water and wind to force it away. As he did so, Harry saw in his peripheral vision that a huge fist of ice was heading his way and he just managed to turn in time to release a wave of pure heat to melt the projectile.
Voldemort did not let up his attack, however, and had closed the gap between the two of them in Harry’s distraction. Even as the fist of ice was melted, the extrudo curse was heading his way and he didn’t react in time to block the lightening fast spell. Harry was knocked out of the air and sent plummeting to the ground, only just managing to slow himself down before he struck the unforgiving earth. Quickly rolling out the way, Harry sensed a Killing curse strike the floor where a second ago he had lay but didn’t dwell on it as he rolled to his feet.
As Harry Potter regained his footing, however, he was met by a terrifying sight. A dozen black balls of pure dark magic hung in the air all around him, fizzing with power as they prepared to explode outwards with deadly force. Desperately flinging his arms forwards, Harry propelled himself backwards so that all the globes were in front of him before gathering all his power to his fingertips and releasing it in a wall of pure light magic.
The ethereal protection of his wall protected Harry from much of the blast’s destructive power as the balls exploded with earth-shattering power, but he was sent flying backwards from the shockwave. His ears rang with the force of the explosion as he flew through the air, battered and bruised, he was unable to react in time to slow himself down. Landing hard, he somehow managed to conjure up the energy to roll up to his feet but was immediately met by a powerful disembowelment curse.
Weary with injury and fatigue, Harry only just managed to raise a shield in time and, though it blocked the curse, it was smashed to pieces with the pure power of the magic. He was about to raise another defence when suddenly he felt a massive gust of wind pick up below and he was unable to stop himself being flung high into the air. Knowing that he was in immediate, mortal danger, the young wizard desperately twisted in the sky, whipping his body round to bring his wand to bear once more, but it was no use. Voldemort had immediately followed his curse with a powerful stream of pure dark magic and Harry’s hastily conjured protection stood no chance.
A scream ripped itself from Harry’s throat as he was flung into the far wall and a pain like no other filled every fibre of his being. The evil magic, made strong by the Ritual of Eternal Damnation, tore at Harry’s magical core and tortured his body and soul. For an eternity it continued; a never ending stream of destruction and pain, striking the young warrior in the chest and pinning him to the wall as he could offer no resistance. And then it ended. For a brief half-second, Harry felt the agony abate and relief washed over him, before a sickly green light shone through his eye-lids and he knew no more.
Harry Potter fell twenty feet to the ground, where his body slumped lifelessly against the wall, his eyes open but unseeing. As he lay broken on the ground, his heart gave one final, weak shudder before lying still. He didn’t hear Lord Voldemort’s cry of triumph, or the shocked and heartbroken gasps of Remus and Thane, to him these things no longer existed; he was nothing and there existed nothing but darkness.
But then there was something; a small stirring of consciousness. Harry no longer felt any pain or worry, there was no responsibility, no Voldemort and, as he opened his eyes, he saw nothing but blackness. There was no ceiling, no walls or floor, but that didn’t matter because he didn’t seem to have a body either. He was having difficulty recalling anything about his life, even his own name, and only very vague senses presented themselves, not that Harry minded, in fact he was perfectly content to float, disembodied in the darkness, unfeeling and unknowing.
But then everything changed again. A speck of light appeared before him and Harry looked upon it with mild interest as he continued to float in the nothingness. The light was growing and, if Harry had had eyes, they would have widened as it suddenly flew at him, expanding until it encompassed him entirely. And as the world went from one extreme to another; from the darkness to the light, the young wizard was hit by a rush of memories, of feelings and emotions as his life played out in fast-forward before his eyes. Suddenly he remembered everything and he was filled with panic.
He had not returned to the land of the living however. Though he now seemed to have a body, the fact that it wasn’t screaming at him in protest at the sufferings it had endured was enough to tell him that. Rather, the light seemed to have transported him to a massive room, with no doors or decor of any kind, nothing but white.
“Whoever designed the after-life clearly wasn’t a fan of colour,” Harry muttered and was shocked to hear a deep chuckle from behind him.
Whipping around, Harry’s jaw dropped as, for the second time that night, he found himself face to face with his Mum and Dad. The Boy Who Lived automatically winced in anticipation of the verbal attack he was sure would come, but quickly he noticed something. His parents weren’t staring at him in revulsion, in fact they were beaming at him, both sets of eyes shining with unshed tears of pride. This wasn’t a trick.
“Mum? Dad?” Harry whispered, not believing they could actually be stood in front of him, while desperately wishing it was so.
“Sirius wanted to come,” James spoke, his wife seemingly too emotional to say anything, “but only we were allowed.”
Harry nodded slightly, slowly reaching out a hand until it came to rest on his Father’s, very solid, face. James Potter smiled once more, looking, to his credit, only slightly uncomfortable about the situation. It seemed, however, that Lily could hold herself back no longer and she flung herself on to her only son, whom she had last seen aged just one year old, and wrapped her arms around him in a tight hug. Harry faltered slightly in shock, but quickly recovered and, finally fulfilling a childhood dream, hugged his Mum. James soon joined in and for some time the three of them just stood in each others’ arms, until Harry finally extricated himself and looked upon his parents; his shining eyes hungrily taking in every detail of them as if wanting to remember every little detail of this moment.
“Where are we?” He finally asked. “Because frankly, if this is heaven, they’ve really exaggerated how nice it is in the brochure.”
James and Lily laughed and this time, it was Lily who responded.
“You aren’t dead Harry, not quite. Your heart was stopped by the Killing curse but your soul still resides within your body. Right now you are between places, neither in one world nor the other. Though your blood and mine now runs in Voldemort’s veins, the protection I gave you as a baby remained strong enough that, combined with your own incredible healing powers, you weren’t killed straight away. Just this once, Harry, the fates are giving you a second, no make that third, chance.”
The truth dawned on the youngest Potter and he smiled wryly.
“I have to go back don’t I?”
“No.” His Father replied. “You don’t have to, but you will. You will because that’s who you are son, the earth must not fall into Voldemort’s hands and I know that, as long as you survive, you will not stop until he is wiped off the planet. You can’t imagine how proud we are of you and how much we love you.”
Lily nodded. “I love you more than anything. And I know I’m not the only one,” she added teasingly. “I think there’s another reason for you to go back. I like her.”
Harry smiled at that, but it slid from his face as he saw his parents’ expression grow serious and James Potter started to speak.
“We’ve been watching over you Harry and we know what our shadows said to you, after emerging from Merlin’s tablet. Our message remains the same. You have suffered far too much in your short life and have coped incredibly, but a darkness lingers in your soul. The side-effect of the ritual you underwent with the Rock of Initium; the whispers, are growing ever stronger. You must fight them son or they will consume you and they will change who you are.”
“Don’t fight with hate in your heart Harry,” Lily said. “You have so much love and it is that more than anything else that makes you strong. Push aside the whispers, fight for love and you will achieve anything you set out to do.”
James and Lily then looked and each other and suddenly a tinge of sadness tainted their smiles.
“We have to go,” James spoke. “Just remember what we told you and always remember that we love you.”
Harry was about to call out for them to wait, when James and Lily Potter faded from sight and he was left alone in the empty white room. It was then that the room started to change. The wall before him disappeared and the path forward became what seemed to be an endless expanse of bright, white light. As he turned around, the young wizard found that the wall behind him had, in turn, been replaced by endless darkness, making his choice clear. Closing his eyes for a second and heaving a deep sigh as he muttered about his own stupid nobility, Harry Potter leapt back into the darkness.
There was no lingering in the blackness this time, no disembodied contentment; Harry was flung through the space between worlds at gut-wrenching speed before, with a jolt, he felt his soul rejoin his body. And there it was. The pain and exhaustion that told him that he had indeed re-entered the land of the living. No time had passed at all and Voldemort’s triumphant cry was just dying on his serpentine lips as Harry, with a smile, felt his heart start pumping once more.
The organ delivered life-giving blood to his veins and the blood, in turn, brought his magic to his fingertips. He felt the full extent of his power crackling just beneath the surface and with it, there awakened the whispers once more. The voices roared their instructions in his ear, but this time Harry fought, he fought with a new and powerful determination and mentally dragged the whispers to the very back of his mind, locking them away as he followed his parents advice and instead focused on everything he loved. He focused on his love for Ginny, for Ron and Hermione, for his parents and Sirius and Remus and Thane, for the Weasleys and Hagrid and a warm feeling spread throughout his being. His mind seemed to clear and the pain faded away to be replaced by nothing but resolve to defeat Voldemort once and for all, not for power or glory, but for them; for the ones he loved.
Opening his eyes as they glowed brightly with magical energy, Harry pushed his hands down on to the ground and hoisted himself up to his feet. Power radiated off the young man as he stood and focused his gaze on his nemesis and his nemesis alone. Voldemort had momentarily turned away and it was a strangled cry of joy from Remus that caused the Dark Lord to turn around, his eyes widening in shock, and perhaps a little fear, before narrowing in hatred.
“You really aren’t very good at this killing me thing are you Tom?” Harry spoke. “That’s two Killing curses you’ve hit me with now and yet I still seem to be alive. You must be losing your touch.”
Voldemort roared in rage and whipped his wand forward, firing off a powerful blasting curse. Harry waited until the last second before slashing his wand upwards to meet the curse, releasing, as he did so, a burst of pure magic to bat the spell away and into the ceiling. The younger wizard then returned fire with a Killing curse and an extrudo, but both were wide and Riddle ignored them as he wielded his wand in a complex motion.
A huge basilisk of elemental flame appeared before him and immediately struck out at Harry. The curses the young warrior had sent at Voldemort, however, had started to curl around, homing in on the Dark wizard and forcing him to raise a shield as Harry conjured a massive Phoenix of elemental water to do battle with the snake. Harry then turned his attention back to Voldemort and, using the Dark Lord’s distraction, summoned up all of his magic and conjured a dozen balls of pure light magic, which he sent flying at Voldemort.
Riddle acted quickly, however, and wrapped the ethereal globes in pure dark magic, which muted their effects as they exploded outwards. Voldemort immediately seized the offensive and shot out Killing curses like machine-gun fire, forcing Harry to roll out of the way of the deadly bolts of death. The Dark Lord was ready for this, however, and the ground below Harry crumbled, sending him tumbling and landing on his back.
Rolling to his feet, Harry looked up to see his nemesis reaching up to the heavens once again. There was no long incantation this time, however, and the young wizard just had time to wonder what Voldemort was up to when there was a great BANG from above and a giant, flaming rock crashed through the ceiling and shot his way. Reacting with impressive speed, Harry reached out his hands to slow the meteor and brought it to a halt just a few feet from his face before freezing it and flinging it back towards Voldemort.
The Dark Lord blasted the rock to pieces but, as he did so, Harry took a page from his book and forced thick vines to rise from the ground and wrap themselves around his enemy’s legs, tripping him up. As Riddle landed on his back, Harry conjured a huge wall of rock above him and released it to the pull of gravity, sending it plummeting to the prone Dark wizard. Voldemort reacted quickly, however and raised his arms to catch the rock before jumping to his feet and manoeuvring the wall to block the incoming Killing curses. The Dark Lord then thrust his wand forward and sent the wall flying towards Harry at speed.
The young wizard blasted the earth to pieces but, as he did so, found a massive stream of pure Dark magic heading his way. He was about to roll to the side when something stopped him; a powerful voice, different and greater than the whispers of his mind screamed out for him to return fire. Harry heeded its call and, with as much power as he could muster, flung out a torrent of pure light magic to meet the Dark Lord’s attack.
The two opposing forces met in the middle and Voldemort immediately started to gain ground. His power, boosted by the Ritual of Eternal Damnation, was too much even for Harry and the Dark magic pushed against the Light, forcing its way towards the young warrior with irresistible power. Harry was reaching deep into his inner magical core and scraping together every last bit of his magic to push back against the Dark Lord but he was losing hope as the gap between him and the deadly Dark magic become smaller by the second.
As he stood, about to die, Harry’s thoughts turned to his parents and their message to him from beyond the grave. He thought about his friends and loved ones and everyone who would suffer a most terrible fate if he allowed Voldemort to win but most of all he thought of Ginny and his love for her. Harry closed his eyes to force the last of his power into the pure Light magic and, as he focused on those he loved most, he felt a warm glow within him and a raw determination took hold of his very soul. He couldn’t allow them to face a world with Voldemort in command. They would not face the torture and pain that the Dark Lord’s reign would inevitably bring; he was the one with the power to defeat Tom Riddle and he would damn well rid the universe of his cursed existence.
Harry felt a new power within him and seized it with all his might before throwing it into his magic. The pure Dark magic halted mere inches from Harry’s face and started, slowly, to give way to the blinding whiteness of the pure Light. The young warrior focused all the love he had for his friends and girlfriend into that spell and, with a Herculean will of effort, forced the Dark magic back, steadily gaining ground as he poured more and more power into his attack. Utterly exhausted and fighting beyond his capabilities, Harry retained consciousness through pure strength of will alone, his determination to save his loved ones from his fate feeding his magic until, finally, the Pure Light magic struck the Dark Lord in chest.
An unearthly scream ripped itself from Voldemort’s throat but Harry didn’t let up; he couldn’t, not until he was certain Tom Riddle was no more. With the power granted to him by the Rock of Initium, Harry conjured a giant tempest of fire, water, wind and earth and flung it at Lord Voldemort, mixing it with the Pure Light magic. For an age, he pummelled his nemesis with magical power, dropping onto one knee in exhaustion as black spots appeared before his eyes.
Even half unconscious and supported only on one knee, Harry kept up the onslaught, sheer will-power alone preventing him from collapsing entirely and succumbing to magical exhaustion. But eventually, he could give no more. The elemental storm ceased and Harry fell forward on to the ground, panting heavily, but somehow retaining his grip on consciousness as his eyes drooped closed and he awaited the retaliation. It never came.
Not daring to believe, hardly daring to hope and with a massive effort, Harry raised his head and looked towards where Lord Voldemort should be standing. There was something lying on the ground, but exactly what was impossible to tell. He reached out with his magical senses but felt nothing. Dragging himself to his feet, Harry stumbled over to the pile of whatever it was and what he saw took his breath away. Flat upon the ground there laid a blackened mess; a charred and burned mass of flesh and bone that, to Harry, was one of the most beautiful things he had ever seen. The remains of Tom Marvolo Riddle; Lord Voldemort.
For a good thirty seconds, Harry was too stunned to know what to do, his mind failing to comprehend what his eyes were telling him. And then he laughed. It was not a laugh of joy, but of hysteria and of relief; it was over, he had done it and what was more, he had survived to tell the tale. Voldemort would never hurt anyone again. Galvanised by his triumph, Harry felt his exhaustion leave him in a rush of adrenalin and his magic jumped to his aid in providing what he wanted.
“It’s done!” Harry’s magically enhanced voice boomed out into the hall.
A few heads turned his way but the majority remained focused on their own individual battles to survive. That is until Harry made his next statement.
“Voldemort is dead!”
All around the room, heads now turned to Harry and a few Death Eaters gave cries of shock and horror at the sight of Harry stood victoriously over the corpse of their fallen master. These mixed in with whoops of joy and the Order of the Phoenix seemed to take heart from the triumph, throwing themselves yet harder into battle and taking down more than a few Death Eaters immediately as the Dark witches and wizards stood stunned at what had transpired.
Harry saw that the battle was turning the light’s way and knew that, with his help, the army of darkness would not last much longer. Too exhausted to throw himself around all over the place as was his usual style, he kept his distance, throwing out powerful curses and spells at any Death Eater unfortunate enough to wander into his crosshairs. An idea forming in his mind, Harry had to grin at the irony as he conjured a large snake, before multiplying it by twenty and hissing at his new minions, commanding the serpents to wrap themselves around the legs and arms of the Death Eaters to bind them.
As the conjured snakes slithered away, Harry turned his attention to the Nosferatu, a few of whom were now targeting him; not the smartest of ideas. Twirling his wand expertly, Harry sent out advanced vampire killing curses with impressive speed, mixing them in with Extrudo curses to blast away any that might get too close. Soon the Death Eater and Nosferatu numbers were dwindling and the army of light pushed its numerical advantage, not letting up in the slightest the ferocity of their battling until the last Death Eater was stunned and bound, his wand snapped. The Lycan King growled his disapproval at Remus’ mercy for the man, but the werewolf merely smiled back and, as one, the soldiers of the Order of the Phoenix let loose a cry of joy.
Harry knew that their job was far from over, but for a moment he allowed himself to be swept up in celebration as happiness and relief spread through the ranks. Cheers went up and hugs were exchanged as words of congratulation were passed around, with Harry getting more than his fair share. Soon, however, fatigue kicked in and Harry slid down a wall and on to the floor, and within seconds, they too fatigued, the rest of the room quietened and for a few minutes, the Boy Who Lived enjoyed some moments of peace.
Exhausted, battered and bruised, many having collapsed to the ground, the Lycans and Order of the Phoenix turned their gaze as one to Harry, who gave a tired smile and a nod of understanding. Resisting the urge to simply ignore them all and lie down on his comfy bit of floor for a week-long nap, the Boy Who Lived pushed himself up and walked over to the far end of the room, aware as he did so that the others were following him. Approaching the final puzzle, the one on which Voldemort had seemingly been stuck when he entered the room, Harry had to smile at what he saw.
It appeared to everyone stood looking at it to be a series of meaningless shapes and squiggles, everyone that is except one man. Harry immediately recognised it as the language Merlin had created, the one that had been carved upon his tablet and written in his diary; the language that only his descendents could understand.
Son of Merlin, the potion of light is within your reach. Its power is great but terrible and unsuitable to be wielded by mere man, but it is my suspicion that the time will come when its existence endangers the safety of this earth. I leave it to my descendents to know if and when that time comes and rid the world of this potion’s evil once and for all. Deposit on to me a sample of your blood and the Elixir a Lumina shall be revealed.
Harry felt the whispers stirring once more as he drew his wand and placed it against his cheek, where he could feel the sting of an open gash. Ignoring the pain, he gathered some blood and used his wand to paint it upon the wall. Before his eyes, the blood sank into the stone and, after a moment’s peace, the room started to violently shake. A blinding white glow emanated from the wall and Harry was forced to cover his eyes. And then there was stillness. The glow faded away and, sensing a familiar magic, the young wizard turned and smiled when he saw that his allies had frozen in time. The section of wall covered in engravings faded away and an alcove was revealed; a small hollow in the stone, carrying a medium-sized crystal goblet, unusual only in its simplicity, which belied the great power contained within. With a wave of his wand, Harry vanished the magical force-field, which preserved the integrity of the glass and the potion and slowly reached forward to take hold of the Elixir a Lumina.
The second Harry’s fingers found the cool glass of the goblet, he sensed time kick-start around him and the soldiers of the Order of the Phoenix and the Lycan court all released sounds of amazement and awe. Picking up the glass, Harry turned around to face those he had fought alongside in this great battle. He looked into the eyes of the King and then back down to the potion. The dark voices of his mind pushed back against Harry’s mental defences, finally breaking through and hissing at him to drink from the cup. They whispered promises of great power and glory and made him want both. They filled his psyche until he couldn’t tell their voices from that of his conscious, screaming at him to take drink; to fight back against the world that had treated him so badly and seize the power that was rightfully his.
The Lycan Queen saw the indecision in the young wizard’s eyes and decided to give him a push.
“Drink Harry Potter. Take us under your command and gain for yourself the great power of our species and that of the most hated ones,” she whispered, lacing her voice with a unique magic to convince him. “It is your birthright. You could do so much with the power resting in your hands; no one could stop you.”
Harry met the Lycanthrope’s gaze and gave a small smile. He raised the glass up to his face and, his eyes seeking Remus and Thane; vanished it with a silent spell. A furious ROAR met Harry’s ears, the second the Elixir disappeared, but to him it was just a sideshow, second to what was going on within his own mind. The voices shouted angrily at him; screaming about what he could have had, but Harry didn’t care, he had resisted them and not just by pushing them away. He had simply overpowered their will and he knew that they held no sway in his mind any longer and he grinned and as he felt them fade away into nothingness, leaving his mind, for the first time in almost a year, entirely his own domain.
The Lycans, however, quickly brought his attention back to earth as they dropped down, ready to pounce. The Order soldiers were immediately at Harry’s back, their wands drawn protectively, ready to fight to death against their former allies.
“You betrayed us!” The King snarled furiously and Harry merely nodded, feeling no guilt as he knew without doubt that the evil creatures had planned to betray him. “We lived up to our end of the bargain and you have not delivered the Elixir a Lumina, your sentence for this betrayal, human, is death.”
“I don’t want to fight you,” Harry said simply. “I do not like you and I do not trust you. The world would undoubtedly be a better place without your kind in it. But you have fought by my side and that, to me, is important. You are free to leave this place, to live on, but if you choose to fight me, then know that I will kill you. You have seen what I am capable of and if you make yourselves our enemy, I will lead my army of men, women, beasts and beings and eradicate your kind.”
The Lycan king’s anger grew further at Harry’s words, but the monster could see the truth in them. With one last desperate ROAR, he rose from his fighting stance and fixed Harry with his stare.
“This is not over Harry Potter. You have made yourself an enemy of the Lycanthrope nation and we have very long memories. One day, you will be brought to justice and you will die in my jaws. The Elixir a Lumina may be gone, but now that it is, it is possible to create a new one. The Lycanthropes will rise once more and the power that could have been yours, will be your downfall.”
With these final words, the King turned and stalked away, leading his court to collect the rest of their soldiers from the battlefield outside. Once they had gone, Remus turned worriedly to Harry.
“He’s right,” the werewolf said. “Now that the Elixir has been destroyed, there is nothing stopping another one being created, especially if they have another thousand years to work on it.”
Harry smiled and reached out with his magical senses to confirm that the Lycans were gone.
“Who said the Elixir is destroyed?”
Remus’ eyes widened, along with the rest of the Order soldiers.
“Where is it?” One of them asked.
“I didn’t have a ridiculously over-protected ancient castle on hand, but it’s safe for now. Don’t worry, I’ll make sure no one ever finds it again. Now, I know old Voldy’s kicked the bucket, but this is no time to be stood around gossiping like old women. I don’t know about you lot, but killing history’s most powerful Dark Lord has gotten me in the mood to do some more fighting. What do you think Thane, feel like defeating the rest of the forces of darkness outside Leaena castle then going on to liberate Hogwarts?”
The Auror considered for a moment. “I suppose I don’t have anything else planned right now, but once we’ve done I’m going to need one hell of a stiff drink and you, Potter, are getting the first round in.”
A/N: Please review and tell me what you think and I'll get to work on the last chapter proper (there will be an epilogue after that). At the moment it is called 'Of The Battle of Hogwarts, Snape and The End of the Second War' and I can see no reason why this will change. I've been quite good recently so with a bit of luck, I'll get it up (so to speak) quickly.
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