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Chapter 13 : Chapter Fourteen. Creatures From the Deep
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Chapter Fourteen. Creatures From the Deep
The sounds of my dorm mates preparing for the day wake me, and I gradually become aware of the world. The first thing I notice is that my bed is unusually warm, and rapidly subsequent to that I realize why. Vic lays beside me, he long silver hair spread over the pillows like a gossamer fan. The events of the previous day rush back to mind and I can feel a un manly blush creeping up the back of my neck. To say those events were not what I excepted would be a Horntail sized understatement. Vic always seems to surprise me with that sort of stuff though. One moment she is talking normally, then some sort of spell falls over her and I find myself in the nearest broom closet being snogged for England. Blimey.
She turns in her sleep, and the blanket slips revealing a creamy pale shoulder. I prop myself on one elbow, lean over, and kiss the exposed skin. She stirs dreamily and whispers "Teddy..." in a soft voice. Though she does not seem to be fully awake she wraps her small hands around my neck and places a sweet kiss on my mouth. All my thoughts flee my head, and we are both so absorbed in our gentle morning greeting kisses that the whole world seems to shrink to just us two.
The illusion is rapidly broken when a distant tumultuous crash of water reverberates through the castle. "Crikey! Teddy come look at this!" The bed hangings of my four poster are ripped open, and whatever Will was so eager to tell me is lost when he discovers my company. To my astonishment Vic does not seem embarrassed in the least. She glares up at Will haughtily, and surprising me again is the first to speak. "To what do we owe this unsolicited interruption, Will?" She asks, her voice filled with an entrancing fire. "Uh..." Is all Will can get out, and I don't blame him. With all the airs of a long ago queen Vic turns her back on Will and continues kissing me as if nothing untoward had occurred. I am lost again until a splutter from Will brings me to my senses. "Piss off and let her get some clothes on, mate." He sensibly turns his back.
Once we are both somewhat clothed we leave the haven of my bed too discover the reason for the interruption. All of the seven other Griffindor boys are pressed up against the windows, and Will turns to tell us what is going on his face ripe with embarrassment and relief. "There is somat' in the lake, Ted. It's massive." Vic glides forwards to the window, and my dorm mates part in awe. They have stopped gawping out the window and instead goggle at my girlfriend. A wave of possessive defensiveness roles over me, and I hurry to wrap my arms around her. Manfred Bletchly is still looking stupidly at the print reading 'Lupin' on the back of the Griffindor keeper jersey that Vic wears. Once the blokes have recovered themselves sufficiently, they join us at the window. A scene of unfamiliar destruction greats our eyes.
The surface of the lake is crashing with enormous waves, the ebb and flow of them reaching far up the banks. Trees on the waters edge are up rooted by some unknown cause and Hagrid's hut has been knocked asunder by the force of the angry water. Directly above the lake, a storm brews, blighting the otherwise blue sky. From this vantage point we can see something stirring in the depths of the fathomless waters.
I chill passes over me, and I pull Vic instinctively closer. The thing that Will and I saw was not a trick of the light, nor was it the giant squid. An unidentified undulating creature has taken up residence in the black lake. It's massive movements seem to shake the very foundations of the castle. Even with only brief glimpses of the scaly hide of the monster visible, we can tell that the thing is easily six times the size of the giant squid. The nine of us stand sentinel and silent, watching riveted. The first to speak is Will, "We've gotta find out what in Merlin's name is going on."
I pull away from Teddy and the boys, an unfamiliar uncomfortable feeling stealing over me. In a sort of daze I grab my wand, then Teddy's broom. Something seems to have a hold on me, drawing me out towards the catastrophe unfolding in plain view. Before anyone else has had time to do more then turn round, I have leapt onto the broom and shot out the open window. Teddy calls out to me and a force outside of myself prevents me from returning to his side. An indefinable purpose has taken me up. I circle the tumultuous tempest that is sending flashes of bluish lighting into the furious surface of the lake. I can't say what has robbed me of my reason, but it feels as if another being has invaded my body and I am watching circumspect from the sidelines.
As I draw nearer it becomes apparent that there are people fighting to contain the devastation. Teachers and duelers wearing the green robes of 'The Control and Regulation of Magical Creatures' office at the ministry send fruitless spells into the watery depths. Bizarrely I remember a passage in the Veela book as I circle lower.
"In times of need Veelas can sometimes absorb the moods and will of a crowd of beings. This may cause the Veela to act defensively in instances of danger or high emotion, so beware. It is a will exterior to her own, and depending on the power of the crowd and the nature of the situation, can cause the Veela to sacrifice her own existence for the greater good. Older Veelas can sometimes suppress this instinct with difficulty but it is not in their genes to do so. Veelas in large crowds, like at sporting events, can sometimes be spurred to actions of violence against their own intentions. This capability birthed the wizarding sayings 'As fickle as a Veela' and 'Veela violence'."
As this comes back to me fear starts to permeate my heart. I want to stop, but can't. The 'fickleness' of my species has overridden my Ravenclaw reason, and unprepared and barely armed I am careening towards a beast about which I know almost nothing. The wind howls around me, and I can hear the shouts of the teachers below, ordering me to come back. I cannot. I think of Teddy, his love for me, his warm jumper enveloping me with is scent, and how disappointed he would be if I croaked. Suddenly my Weasley bravery returns to me, appropriately while I wear the Griffindor colors, not of my house. Determination fills my heart. If I can't stop myself from fighting at least I can do my utmost to battle bravely.
I yank out my wand a change my plummeting trajectory. It would not due to dive straight into the lake, without knowing anything at all. A powerful gust nearly knocks me from my broom, and I realize that this will have to be a brief reconnaissance mission. My hair whips around me, looking like lightning in the strange illumination, halfway between sunshine and the darkness of the storm. I become one with it, accepting my fate in this fury.
Below something springs out of the lake, which looks more like an ocean now. A huge leviathan, its back riddled with ancient wounds, its scales an unforgiving grey. As it dives again into the depths, its massive barbed tale flicks out into the surrounding air, armed with spikes each easily as long as a muggle automobile. The scaly hide of the leviathan seems to be coated in that viscous blue goo that Teddy and I were made to clean up so recently. As it rises again I dive towards it, aiming Teddy's magnificent broom at the beasts head. When it comes into view I gasp in fear.
The eyes are impossibly large and frightening. As I fly around the side of the head, which as risen out of the water to be has high as the great hall, I glare at one eye that is equal in size to Grawps entire head. The leviathan glares back through the watery red of its dilated pupil. Annoyed by this small figure interrupting its view of the castle it tosses its head in my direction. The force with which the collision knocks me causes me to drop forty feet in a spinning out of control dive. I am miraculously uninjured, but now anger has come to my defense. I fire curse after curse, inundating the beast with magic. As it rises again from the water, furious at the spells bouncing off of its seemingly impervious hide it releases a howl of anger. The sound is so forceful that the claps of thunder now occurring moments apart pale in comparison. The leviathan is filled with malicious malcontent as it slams its tale against the trees of the Forbidden Forest that surround the coast of the lake. The massive oak trees that have been standing for centuries, peacefully watching the goings on at the castle, are bashed to smithereens or impaled on the spikes of the leviathan's tale.
My sadness at the ruin of those majestic protectors is nothing compared to the anger I feel at the senseless killing of all their animal inhabitants. The bowtruckles, thestrals, birds, hippogriffs, and others that found their homes in the lofty branches of the destroyed trees deserve more than a pointless death. Maybe it was my anger, or my contemplation of the flight bound creatures, but a change seems to take a hold of me again. Pain not caused by injury assaults me as my bones alter their orientation and shape. It seems that Valencia Valentina was right about the transformation that Veelas can achieve after full maturity. I had experienced my own 'true passion' and now I was completing my reformation into my 'Avius Harpeia' form. Without legs to hold it Ted's broom gets whipped away in the increasingly violent storm. My new found silvery bronze wings spread out on either side of my now sleek eagle body. Flight in this form fills me with a fierce defiant joy. I will conquer the leviathan.
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