Chapter 1 : Marked for Destruction
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But the guilt that set in afterwards was worse than all the humiliation he had ever suffered at the hands of Potter and his gang of little boys masquerading as men. Was it worth losing her?
Weeks passed. She ignored him, never meeting his eye, never responding to his owl. He knew that, in that awful moment, he had destroyed the only happiness he ever possessed. For a fleeting second, he found his infinity in her sparkling laugh, her emerald eyes, her auburn hair, her sincere smile. And now, when his heart ached for her the most, he felt it breaking. His infinity had ended, shattered on the concrete of a cruel mistake.
The world darkened under his weary gaze. Evil was rising and he, with nothing left but his House loyalty and his broken heart, felt the call-to-arms. What was left for him on the side of light, where her eyes sparkled for someone he despised and glazed over when he dared to call her name?
There was nothing left for him, forever marked with the invisible sign of a traitor. So he hardened his heart like he should have long ago, and they marked his arm with a visible sign of his betrayal. In time, it would come to be as much a part of himself as a finger, but he would always resent the way it stained his sallow skin, a reminder of a choice made in desperation and loneliness.
Years passed. The rumors were true. He tried to keep himself from hearing them, but they intruded upon the silence of his barely-beating heart. He told himself that he was stronger without her, more powerful at the right hand of a great and terrible master. Yet his thoughts strayed inevitably to her.
She had gone into hiding with the arrogant Potter and his young son. (He refused to make himself think of the child as Lily’s, for how could she have married such an immature bigot?) Though he knew his comrades saw her as an object, branded by the term he had thrown at her so many years before, he still wished for a world in which she was his again. In the midst of his darkest days, he found himself hoping that the day would come when he could apologize and love her like she deserved to be loved.
But it was too late. That night, his world went to hell in a hand basket, for his chances of forgiveness were snuffed out like a dying flame. The thought of his life after her untimely death was unbearable. Without her, he was nothing.
Tears flowed from his eyes as he fell to the floor, begging for someone to end his sorry existence.
“Lily,” he whispered, but his own sobs silenced him.
All the words in their infinite combinations were not enough to save what he had lost.