Chapter 1 : This year will be my year
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Cowards, he thought. Each and every one of his Death Eaters was a snivelling, weak creature, relying on the purpose that he, Lord Voldemort, gave their pitiful existence. It was a good thing that he did give them meaning. For a moment, Voldemort tried to picture what their lives would be like without his presence to bind them together. Closing his red eyes, his slit-like nostrils flared in distaste as he realised that they would have no lives, just a meaningless existence. Short and unimportant.
He however, would live forever. He was powerful. This coming year would be his year, finally. It would be his time to rule the world. And yet at the word forever something stirred deep inside him.
“McNair, you will of course be able to resume your post in the Ministry of Magic?” Voldemort asked in his unnaturally high voice.
A tall, thin shape shrouded in the Death Eater’s cloak stepped forward.
“Of course Master,” he said in a gruff voice.
Voldemort smiled to himself. If he didn’t know his Death Eaters inside out and care for them as a true master should, he would not have been be able to pick up the fear in McNair’s voice. McNair was trained to hide things like that well. As it was however, McNair's stoic voice and unflinching attitude was not enough to disguise his fear, and Voldemort was not fooled.
“Ahh.” He took a deep breath through the slits of his nose. “Remembering your failure in the Ministry earlier this year are you McNair?” he asked, his tone almost a caress as he continued to scan the outlines of his Death Eaters.
“M –my Lord – “ began McNair, but Voldemort cut him off.
“It is no matter McNair, I have forgiven you remember?”
Through McNair’s mask, Voldemort could see the patch that now covered the space where one of his eyes should have been. Being poked in the eye by the Longbottom boy had been McNair’s excuse for letting the prophecy escape.
“We have made sure that your eye is never a weakness for you again,” Voldemort continued in a dangerously gentle voice. McNair swallowed, but remained silent.
Voldemort turned slowly, scanning his faithful Death Eaters. A weariness was threatening to overcome him.
Despite all the help and encouragement he had given his followers, they remained weak, incapable and aimless. There were times when Voldemort was convinced that no matter how much time and effort he put into his followers, they would always be cowardly and pathetic. Occasionally - especially at times like now when he felt the burden of the future weighing on him - he wondered why he bothered with them at all.
Voldemort’s life aim was control of the Wizarding World. He alone had the power and the vision to ensure the future of Pure Bloods, and Wizard Supremacy. But with doddering old fools like Dumbledore fighting so vocally against him, it would be a long slow process. Dumbledore would have to be eliminated. He and his annoyingly persistent Members of the Order, or whatever they were.
Voldemort had only idiots like the cowards surrounding him now to assist him, which meant the responsibility fell solely on his own shoulders. It was not a burden he could share.
“We have control of enough people in the Ministry to ensure that our take over continues smoothly and silently,” Voldemort said calmly. “This year, it is finally time for us to ascend to power. Tonight, the last night of the calendar year, I have gathered you all here to make the Unbreakable Vow with me.”
Around him, many of his Death Eaters stiffened.
“Do you have a problem with that Severus?” Voldemort’s voice, already high, quavered a little with anger as he turned to look into the angry black eyes of Severus Snape – who alone had not reacted to the news.
The black eyes remained empty. Yet again, Voldemort felt a twinge of annoyance as he examined the flow of thoughts from Severus’s mind. Severus was the only person whom he had to fight to see into his mind. At times, Voldemort wondered if he ever did fully see all of Severus' thoughts. Doubts like that were easily dismissed however. Voldemort knew he was the most skilled Legilimens there was - no-one could hide their thoughts from him. Not even Snape.
Tonight, staring into the black pits of Severus' eyes, Voldermort realised that there was no fear of the Unbreakable Vow in them, only a sense of frustration at Dumbledore’s continued existence. It seemed Severus wished that Voldemort had not entrusted the boy with the task of removing Dumbledore, and had instead given it to him.
Voldemort curved his thin lips into a smile. Snape’s thoughts appeared to have another layer – he was a skilled Occlumens to even attempt hiding it from Voldemort, not good enough of course to stop him prying further, but good enough to make it a challenge. As Voldemort continued to probe further into Snape's mind, he realised there was a fear there. His thin lips curved in triumph and his red eyes glittered dangerously at Sanpe. As if realising his master wanted access to the deeper thoughts of his mind, Snape lowered the barriers around that thought, allowing Voldemort to see clearly what the fear was.
Snape feared that the Unbreakable Vow Voldemort was about to ask them to make -whatever it would be - may jeopardise his position so close to Dumbledore, making it impossible for him to finish the task that the boy would invariable fail.
Voldemort’s nostrils flared.
“You see it is no use hiding your thoughts from me Severus, although you are most skilled at Occlumency. You are still no match for my skill with Legilimency.”
The black eyes remained empty, except for the ever present anger that was permanently etched into the pale face.
“Of course my Lord,” Snape murmured, his lips barely moving. “Forgive me.”
Voldemort waved his hand dismissively.
“It is no matter” he said, “Your concern is a legitimate one. I have foreseen this of course. Both you and the boy have a need to be extremely cautious with what vows you make, but this tonight will be of no consequence to your mission.”
Only Voldemort’s extremely sensitive hearing gave him the clue that Lucius Malfoy was grinding his teeth on the other side of the circle. He ignored it. Malfoy’s boy was working on his plan this very moment - and his plan was nearly complete. It would not be long now. Lucius Malfoy was lucky that he was still standing in this circle. If his son failed, Voldemort would ensure that the Dementors took care of the entire family.
“This will be our year,” said Voldemort. “To take over the ministry! To remove Dumbledore from our path! To finally take control and right the wrongs of the world!” His high voice rang out across the dark night, the cloaked figured around him stood straighter.
He could still feel the fear seeping from those around him, making them too hesitant to join in his cry for victory. He stared at his followers in distaste. Spineless, snivelling sheep. They would follow anyone with a vision. Voldemort realised it was time he made a change. His followers were about to make an Unbreakable Vow, he too would make a vow to start the year. This year would be his year. This year, Voldemort would take control, and make the Wizarding World a safer place. A place where Wizards were strong and powerful, respected and mighty.
His stomach turned at the sickly group around him, so long downtrodden that they had forgotten their might - their potential. He alone, Lord Voldemort, the most powerful Wizard of all, would be the one to bring the world to rights and put Muggles and Mud-Bloods back in their rightful place. Beneath wizards.
“Who will make the Unbreakable Vow with me?” He called, his voice quavering a little as he raised it still higher.
“Oh Master, allow me!” a breathless voice from his left drew Voldemorts attention to the wild eyes of Bellatrix Lestrange.
Voldemort smiled stretching his thin lips upwards in an unpleasant curve. “Of course my dear, of course. You are one of my most faithful servants, are you not?”
The wild eyes glowed with a feral hunger through the mask. “Yes master! I will do anything, you know I will.”
Voldemort considered her for a moment before nodding, and then turned to the circle at large.
“But this is not just for you Bellatrix my dear. Every one of my loyal Death Eaters will need to make this vow.”
Varying levels of reluctance pulsed through the circle, before Voldemort sensed an acceptance that he could smell on the air. He did not need Legilimency to know that every one of the people in the circle would do as he asked. Some simply because they were too scared to think of disobeying him, but others – like Bellatrix – who had no other desires in their life than to serve him..
“Place our your wand hands,” he commanded and everyone in the circle did so.
“I vow that this will be the year that Dumbledore is over thrown!” he cried at the top of his voice.
“I vow that this will be the year that Purebloods finally come to power!”
“I vow that this will be the year that I, Lord Voldemort, will ensure the future of the wizarding world is pure for ever!”
As he finished his cry, he raised his wand. Light shot from the end, connecting the outstretched hands of his Death Eaters.
As they repeated his words after him, their voices gradually growing in confidence and strength, the moon broke through the heavy cloud-cover, illuminating the graveyard and the hooded figures in a watery, ghostly glow.
Voldemort felt a deep satisfaction. This year would be his year.
A/N I am sorry guys, I was a little bah humbug when I first wrote this. The good thing about writing though, is once it is written out, I can let it go! Yay! Now I am full of Christmas cheer and good spirits! Merry Christmas! :)
So I know this isn't exactly cheerful Christmas reading.. but...ummm.... it was fun?? Ummm. I hope you all have a really good Christmas and New Year!! And dont plan world dominion like Voldy did..
Thanks for reading!
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