Chapter 1 : One Last Time
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Forty Two years ago Albus would have given anything to hear these words slip from these beautiful, seductive lips. Yet now, as he stood on top this darkened hill which overlooked a small, sleeping town on such a gloomy, cold night, he fought back the tears of pain. The younger man knelt in front of him, not daring to look up into the face of the better man for the shame of his easy defeat. Even through the darkness, those piercing blue eyes of Albus’ could make out the now greying, yet still ever beautiful, golden locks of hair. The man gave a sob from beneath him. For a split second Albus froze in shock. It couldn’t be? Gellert Grindelwald had never shed a tear in his entire life. But here he was, knelt below Albus, wand arm outstretched, clutching the elder wand in offering and genuinely sobbing. Then the rain started. A rumble of thunder from overhead and the soft pitter-patter of rain swept over the hillside. It mixed with the salty tears now beginning to roll down Albus’ face and added to the pitter-patter when they landed in the muddy puddle which was beginning to form around his feet. Gellert stayed frozen in position, head bowed down to the ground with only the ever-so-soft sound of sobs breaking through the pitter-patter. Albus said nothing for the moment. The brilliant mind of Albus Dumbledore had gone blank on words. He looked away from the other man, over to the small town which was nestled below the hill. He could make out the church from its lights. Even in such miserable and gloomy weather it looked somewhat pretty. Godrics Hollow. It had been his home for all of his childhood. He loved the village, but the memories associated with it had driven him away from it. He had first met Gellert here, forty two years ago.
And now he couldn’t stop. The tears were streaming down his face. The memories pressing against his chest, suffocating him with pain. What had been. What could have been. Why did it have to end up like this? He had never loved like he had loved back then. He knew he would never love like that again, until his death he would have to face the world alone. Oh how he wished he could just forgive Gellert and undo the damage which had been done, but Gellert must pay for his sins. There could be no excuse. The pain continued to sear through him and to the surprise of Gellert, Albus too dropped to his knees. Mud from the ground below splashing his robes with the impact. His wand falling out of his grasp hiding itself in the darkness. Tears still streaming, Albus cupped his hands around Gellert’s aging face. He could feel the perfectly chiselled face once more, but oh how time had worn away at it. The once perfect complexion was no more and there were many new scars to be felt. Albus was shocked to realise that he was almost feeling sympathetic towards the man who had murdered millions of people. No, he was feeling sympathetic towards the carefree boy he had once known and loved. For Albus there had always been two Gellert Grindelwalds. The infamous, powerful wizard and the boy he had loved, his Gellert. Gently Albus brought Gellert’s face up so they were level, their noses almost brushing. Gellert’s face though stained with tears, still made Albus’ heart skip a beat. His golden hair which had always so lightly bounced into place around his face, now slightly matted with mud and rain, hung dripping around his shoulders looking sorry for itself, yet still ever so breath-taking. Much of the man had changed, yet even now, after those forty two years, Albus’ heart was in his chest as he caught the younger mans darkened eyes. The twinkle in them which had once been so famous had long since died out. Still they continued to be the most stunning thing Albus’ had ever seen.
The faint whisper broke through the stormy night like lightening. Albus’ heart stopped. The German accent, the way in which he pronounced each syllable of his name. More memories surged through his brain and he could feel more tears welling up inside him.
“Albus. Please stop crying. I can’t take it seeing you like this.” There was an innocent honesty in those eyes. Albus didn’t understand it. He didn’t understand anything right now. How could this man, this beautiful shell of a naïve, carefree man have committed some of the worst crimes to humanity in all of the world’s history? He continued to gaze silently into the others eyes. Inside, his body felt like it was turning into ice.
“I am so sorry. I never want to hurt you, Albus.” There it was again, his name. It sent his body into a wild frenzy inside, but his face remained with the same expression of sadness. “All those things I done, I done for the greater good. You know that. We made those plans together. I thought you understood me. The only one to understand me. Why doesn’t anyone see it the way I do?” The tears were slowly dying out on Gellert’s face, as he choked on his sentences, trying to get out the words. Up above the storm continued to rage on. It was not a strong storm, not intimidating nor scary, but merely gloomy and dull and miserable such as the situation. The rain did not pour, just a light sprinkle but it was consistent, unlike so much of Albus’ life.
Albus wiped away his last tears with the sleeve of his robe and attempted to clear his throat. “I do, and always have understood where you are coming from.” His voice cracked like the thunder had previously. “But you must understand that we live in a society with rules and morals. People are brought up with them. They will not understand you. You cannot force people to understand you. You can’t kill people just because they don’t agree with you either. Are you still so naïve?” He moved his head in until their noses were touching and he could feel the soft, warm breath leaving the others lips and steaming up his signature half-moon glasses ever so slightly. Those lips which had at one time explored every inch of his skin, now, wet from a mixture of rain and tears they trembled ever so slightly.
“I’m scared Albus. I don’t want to live out the rest of my life locked up in a small cell.” The younger man’s lips trembled harder and his voice cracked with fear.
There, he had said it. The one word he was trying to avoid. It was too late now. Before he could stop himself he leant forward and embraced the other mans lips in a tight and passionate kiss. Gellert dropped the elder wand out of surprise and it joined Albus’ wand somewhere in the muddy darkness. Albus pulled away just long enough for Gellert to acclaim his love for him, and then they were back, forty two years earlier. Just two bright, young wizards each passionately in love with the other. Exploring and discovering each other. Gellert on top of Albus. How it had always been. How it should always be, but was not to be. The rain didn’t matter, the mud didn’t matter, nothing else mattered except the two of them. Right here. Right now. One last time.
Gellert lay in the mud, bare chest showing. Head perched on Albus’ lap as he knelt beside him. The dawn was creeping on upon them, and Albus dreaded it. There was no way out though. Gellert would have to face his punishment. “Must I go to prison?” It was as though Gellert could read his mind. Beautiful dark blue eyes now staring innocently up at him. Albus looked away and over to Godrics Hollow.
“Yes.” He simply stated in reply. Albus had grown as a man since that dreadful day in Godrics Hollow. He had matured, grown strong morals and now had different ideas to those of Gellert. This does not mean to say he must love the younger man any less however. His heart was being torn out of his chest by the thought of Gellert, Gellert – the carefree, naïve and adventurous boy, being locked up in some tiny tower unable to live out his dreams. What he would have given to be the shining knight in armour to come and rescue his Princess from the tower, but this was not meant to be. Life was not a fairytale. Especially a life such as Albus’. He would live out the rest of his life attempting to be a virtuous person in order to create a better world and Gellert must live out the rest of his life in punishment.
Gellert gave out a little sigh and pulled Albus in closer to him. “Remember when we used to lie up here and watch the stars come out at night? Aberforth would always come looking for us and you used to perform that invisibility spell over us so he couldn’t find us.” The faintest flicker of a smile curved on Gellert’s face. Albus nodded in agreement silently. “I never did manage to perfect that spell like you did. Maybe I should have gone looking for the cloak instead…” He trailed off as a small pop in the distance announced the ministry officials’ apparition. “I suppose this is it then. This is goodbye.” The soaked and muddy younger man rose into an upright position slowly and unwillingly. Albus just gazed silently into his eyes, wanting to take everything in one last time. “I love you Albus. Always have done. Always will do. I hope we are able to see each other if not in this life again, in another one at least.” And with all the childish charm he could muster, Gellert Grindelwald took up Albus Dumbledore’s hand and kissed it gently.
“I love you too, Gellert Grindelwald.”
Gellert walked so silently, yet gracefully alongside the ministry officials. Even to his very end, Grindelwald would keep his elegance and grace. Albus admired him a little more for it. Gradually getting to his feet he scrambled around in mud for the two wands and found them crossed, one over the other, a little way downhill from where the two men had been lying. His wand and Gellert’s wand, it felt as if a piece of Gellert would stay with him after all.
A/N - So, I originally was writing a piece on when the two boys first met, but then randomly this was created. It's not much, but I wanted to focus on their love and emotions, especially Grindelwald's defeat. Generally, I'm quite happy with how it turned out, although, Gellert isn't really how I actually imagined him to be. I find he comes across not very strong in this piece. So yeah, something for me to work on. Other than that, please please please give me feedback. I want to know what people like and what can be improved. Always very useful for a writer. ^-^/