Chapter 1 : Shackles of Fear
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I wasn’t too old to admit that darkness terrified me. A fear that had developed as a child into a full grow phobia as I aged, making my life more difficult than I could imagine it ever would be.
I had tried to be brave, but at times the phobia had crippled me, leaving me unable to function, even to draw breath at times.
For many years my parents had tried to get me help, even sending me to counselling to try and ease my worries, but it didn’t seem to work. I would be fine for a few weeks, but then everything would go wrong and I would wake up in the middle of the night, the pitch blackness weighing in on me and I would go back to square one. The dreams that had started my fear were of monsters that would attack me in the darkness, their claws seemed so real and the stench of their breath was hot on my face as their teeth bared down on me.
However, over the years that I spent at Hogwarts, and with all of the new information about He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named’s rise to power, those monsters had begun to take on human forms and their claws had slowly begun turning into wands.
That’s why I was finding myself crippled in fear as the castle became dark around me, in the midst of the fighting I was currently facing, someone had thrown a powder to the floor and the air around me went pitch black so quickly I thought that I had gone blind.
The paralysing fear crept over me quickly as I struggled to find my breath, my eyes darting around and trying to find a source of light from somewhere as I felt my head beginning to swim and sickness take over me.
My heart was beating madly as the realisation that my nightmares were beginning to come true were hitting me at full force, knocking the little air I had in my lungs away from me.
I was drowning in my own fear, the weight of the darkness pressing heavily on me until I was sure I would be crushed by it.
I couldn’t breathe.
I couldn’t think.
My ears were ringing with a noise that was only beginning to get louder and I felt the presence of something near me, the hairs on the back of my neck and on my arms standing on edge as I was sure that I could feel breathing on the back of my neck.
I was going to pass out, I knew it. Or I was going to die.
I raised my hands slowly to my ears whilst I tried to take deep breaths, managing to make my body function a bit more to move so that I was pressing my back against a wall that I knew I had been near.
I was failing at trying to climb out of this hell, my head was swimming and the noise was getting louder, the same noise that had plagued my nightmares. I gave a choked sob as I screwed my eyes together, hoping to God that I was dreaming, that this was just another nightmare. But I knew that this was real, which meant that I knew what was coming.
I felt myself sliding more to the floor as the fear continued to wash over me, as though it were beating me down, my legs giving out under me and causing me to hit the floor with a hurtful crash.
The noise that was ringing in my ears had begun to mix with the screams and yells around me, but I wasn’t sure if they were worse than the ringing?
I could feel the people around me as everyone else seemed to get their bearings and the fight continued. Spells were thrown around and I wasn’t sure if people actually knew who they were aiming at, or if they even cared.
The flashes of light penetrated the darkness and I felt my breath ease slightly as I could see the part of the castle I was in; illuminate momentarily, not that it helped much. Whatever the darkness was, must have been fading in power, but not quick enough for my liking.
I tried to force myself to calm down and think of what I would have done if I was safe in my dormitory, not in the castle fighting for my life.
I would light my wand and keep it on until I drifted back off to sleep, my wand was my saviour. I can’t believe that I had let my fear take over me so much that I had forgotten that I could make light appear at will.
I fumbled for my wand and made the mistake of looking straight ahead of me as another flash lit up the room. My heart almost stopped as I saw a figure walking towards me, his movements seeming almost jagged in the flashing wand lights, but he was still advancing on me, his wand outstretched.
Exactly like in my nightmares.
I had to be in a nightmare, I was sure of it now.
I just needed to wake up; I always did before the spell would hit me. I would wake up in my bed in Gryffindor house; I could be brave because I was dreaming.
Even though I knew this, a sob still escaped my throat as I felt tears begin slipping down my face.
I squeezed my eyes tightly together as I tried to stop myself from crying out in fear, it would be over soon.
“Wake up. It’s time to wake up. I need to wake up.”
Please let me wake up.
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