|The Serpent of the South
Author: en extase PM
Unceremoniously cast into Middle-Earth, Harry becomes the Serpent Lord of Harad. Under his guidance, the realm becomes the power of the south. He receives a beautifully crafted ring from a courier of Sauron... and it is precious to him. DISCONTINUED.Rated: Fiction M - English - Adventure/Drama - Harry P. - Chapters: 3 - Words: 11,146 - Reviews: 188 - Favs: 431 - Follows: 706 - Updated: 10-01-07 - Published: 08-21-07 - id: 3738389
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
The Serpent of the South
A Harry Potter & Lord of the Rings Crossover
Solving the following conundrum will unravel the terrible secret of the universe.
You're a child, marked by lightning. You were never ordinary, and scarcely the moment after you turned eleven you discovered why. Magic rushed through your veins, and another world laid claim to you. You did not contest this claim - the idea of being historic fascinated you at first. You owe your relatives your humbleness, if nothing else. Your upbringing ensured you never became arrogant. The scrutiny of your peers, the international attention, all this quickly became unwanted.
Yet, you cannot help but think the hero worship justified by your deeds.
A touch of your fingers reduced a fully grown wizard to ash, despite being host of the Darkest Lord to ever mar the pages of history, or perhaps because of it. The next year, you slew an enormous serpent that could kill with its mere gaze.
You achieved that victory with the indispensable aid of a flaming bird. A phoenix, immortal, the ultimate icon of the Light. It blinded the Basilisk, rendering it's gaze harmless, and delivered you a magnificent sword with which you dealt the deathblow.
You like this sword, spent a moment blissfully unaware of the dire peril threatening your life, and studied it. Rubies are encrusted into the hilt, and the blade shone of purest silver. It happened to be the heirloom of the legendary Godric Gryffindor, and you were his heir, as you later discovered. You allowed the sword to be taken from you docilely, but it was never far from your thoughts.
Fast forward another four years. This sword falls into your possession after its owner died and named you its new master. It has spilt gallons of blood, has torn the stomachs of countless Death Eaters, leaving a trail of destruction and death in its wake.
You are no longer a child, but the lightning mark adorning your forehead hasn't faded. The last vestiges of your unhappy childhood were swept away when your freckled, flame-haired friend, your best mate as it were, became the sword's next victim. Let's say that, for some very solid reasons, you decapitate him, overcome in your rage and grief.
The sword breaks, shattering upon the stone behind where his head used to be. You had a theory; the sword, an instrument of the light, could no longer channel the darkness festering in your soul, the darkness spawned by your best friend's rapid turnabout.
You like this sword, spent a moment staring numbly at the bloodstained shards of the goblin-crafted weapon. The hilt is precious to you. it is still magnificent, and so you leave the cursed remains of the blade behind, and head over to the swordsmith down the alley.
You return to take it in a month. The sword is heavier at your side; the new steel blade has been tempered in the hottest forge in the world, crafted with extraordinary skill and precision, but could not compare to its predecessor. For all the reputation of its crafter, the human art had always been inferior to that of the goblins. When you return to your reclusive abode, you encounter a monstrosity that resembles a crossbred manticore and hippogriff.
So you unsheathe your reliable sword, and behead it. However, in the up-stroke, the blade cleaves its dangerous heart, and shatters in a spray of steel slivers.
This means another excursion to Vulcan's Forge. As soon as you return home with your newly-bladed sword though, you meet the reanimated body of your beheaded friend, reeking of Necromancy. His head has been reattached, and it is wearing the resentful expression reading "Hey! You killed me last month!" that is so rarely encountered in life.
You brandish your sword threateningly, and his eyes, rotting and no longer holding the warmth that used to bring confidence to you, bulge madly.
"That's the same sword that slayed me!"
Is he right?
Chapter I: Shattering the Mirror
The heart's fixations change with the passage of time.
Old longings become forgotten.
New longings develop in their place.
Some of them are inevitable, and thus are predictable.
The orphan wants to see his parents, for example. It acts as a driving force, but diminishes once childhood ends and adulthood begins. Hardship dulled even the most heartfelt desire.
Eleven years since his introduction to the world of magic, Harry Potter had seen them. Lily and James. His parents and the rest of the deceased Potter family . The mere sight of them, however illusory it was, enchanted their descendant, who would sit in front of the mirror for hours on end, content to bask in the warmth of their gazes.
So life-like, affecting sympathy for him.
So united, generations of the family residing beyond that layer of glass forever beyond his reach.
It was not until years later that he came across that miraculous mirror again, deep within the bottommost level of the Ministry. He was given the highest-level security clearance, in his capacity as a pivotal figure in the Second Wizarding War.
He no longer saw their beloved faces. Only embers remained of that once burning yearning.
And why not?
Every child grew up.
Every parent wanted to see their child happy.
It was for the best, if they never saw what became of the world they'd entrusted to their son.
Still, the mirror was beautiful.
The golden, ornate frame of the mirror was unrivaled in craftsmanship, every detail carved with precision. The glass was luminous, a rippling mass of silver.
Until he looked into it.
The scene unfolding before him was like a glimpse into another world. The topography of the landscape was uneven. A watchtower overlooked a wide, weather-beaten road. At the top of the hill was a plateau surrounded by a ring of stones. There was a path beginning from the top northward that led into the hills in the background. The sun was beginning to set, and the shadows were growing menacingly. He kept his gaze fixed on the mirror as the door opened to admit the head of the Unspeakables, Croaker. The shady operative was now the only veteran of the first war still fighting in the second fall. Harry had only a limited interaction with his superior, but had long since decided that Croaker stood the best chance of anyone of surviving the war.
The Unspeakable stood beside Harry, studying the mirror. Only a faint outline of his graven, bearded face could be seen under the black cowl he wore.
"I always wondered how long it'd take you to find your way here."
Harry scoffed. "Why?" The effect of others' mystiques was almost completely lost on him. He had associated with enough cloaked cryptics that he was entirely at ease when conversing with them.
"People such as yourself feel a most unusual attraction to the room. It's most curious," Croaker said enthusiastically. "We've discarded theory after theory regarding the matter. I personally thought it had to do with brain waves. So, what do you see?"
Harry's eyes were fixed on the mirror, studying what appeared to be a cairn in the center of the plateau, supporting an orb.
"I see a watchtower," he said slowly. "It's built into a great hill, overlooking a great road. It's twilight, neither day nor night. The sun's setting, and the shadows seem to be wrestling for control. I don't know what or where it is." Only that there are no Death Eaters. No Voldemort. No prophecy. Peace.
"How… interesting. It can be interpreted as a great many things."
Harry ignored the comment. "And you?"
Croaker stared into the mirror with a strange, undecipherable expression on his face. "I see you dead."
The Unspeakable whirled around; there was a screech of metal and a glint of steel as he lunged forward. Harry reacted instantly, seizing Croaker by the wrist in an iron grip, the tip of the dagger falling short of his stomach.
His astonished gaze met Croaker's hardened, bloodthirsty one. "Man, what the hell!" he shouted.
He released the Unspeakable, folding himself at the waist as the dagger extended to twice its original length. Skittering backwards, he drew his wand from its holster, raising it. Croaker calmly slid the dagger into it's sheathe and drew his own wand. He had taken the opportunity for the surprise kill and had squandered it.
"If you die, then the Dark Lord wins. So many sided with you, and died in an endless war for it. Not I."
Harry's mind was awhirl. If Croaker had turned, then the Department of Mysteries had been infiltrated for gods knew how long. Croaker wouldn't have made his move until he could funnel the most valuable secrets and projects to Voldemort. The Ministry was dead on its feet.
"Aren't there binding oaths you have to take to prevent this sort of thing?" Harry exclaimed. "I thought they'd learn after Rookwood's defection!"
"Spiculum! We're Unspeakables. Nothing is an obstacle for long."
Harry dived underneath the deadly fiery bolt of magic, performing a slashing motion horizontally as the Neck-Ripping Curse splattered against the wall behind him.
"Verberovox!" Electricity crackled through the air as a lightning whip lashed towards Croaker as he landed on the ground.
Croaker nimbly darted aside as the Lightning Whip crackled towards him, but not quite nimbly enough to avoid singeing his black cloak. He resumed his dueling stance, wand aimed pointedly at Harry. He looked sinister, sunken, shining eyes glittering with malice fixed on him as Harry calmly climbed to his feet.
Harry eyed Croaker warily, wand held loosely at his side. Fully-trained Unspeakables were dangerous on principle, so their leader was doubly so, as he had so far vindicated.
"That's not how it works," Harry said quietly. "Betrayal has never been the answer."
"Oh, I know better than anyone," Croaker answered.
A shimmer of silver was all that was visible as a whirling dervish rapidly crossed the distance between them. It spun too quickly for either of the combatants to determine what it was, until Harry's charm halted it inches before it reached him. A sickle quivered as it strained against the invisible force suspending it in the air.
The Momentum Suspension Charm expired under the pressure of the Banisher, and the deadly sickle broke through Harry's makeshift shield, flying at twice its original speed towards Harry's vulnerable throat. Harry threw himself into a sidelong roll. The magical sicklepaused above him dramatically, before prompting changing course and diving at him. Harry scrambled away, cursing as it pinned the hem of his robes to the floor, firing curses indiscriminately.
Croaker ignored the hastily-aimed spells, side-stepping them thoughtlessly as he launched his own volley.
"Extundo! Invalidus! Suffocoum!"
A hand met the stone floor forcefully. Harry propelled himself upright as his wand frantically weaved in all the motions of the countercurses, gasping as the overflow of the Strike, Crippling, and Suffocating Spells smashed against his ribs, numbed his wand arm, and stole his breath respectively.
He gritted his teeth, snarling as he ripped his robes free of the sickle immobilizing him.
Both duelists made an ungainly stutter-step forward, arms flailing as they attempted to keep balance. Struggling against the inexorable force pulling at him, Harry was dragged forward with increasing speed, as was Croaker. The Summoning Charm they simultaneously invoked was pulling them together, and Harry prepared himself for the collision that was soon to occur.
Harry blanched as the dagger reappeared. Croaker grinned triumphantly as he thrust his dagger forward at his midriff, poised to impale him within a second. They met in front of the Mirror of Erised. Harry's reflexes saved him yet again as he raised his wand.
The energy he had invested in the Summoning Charm was abruptly converted into another kinetic-based spell. Croaker grunted as the spell took hold of him, the dagger grazing Harry's robes, and was violently flung away before it could penetrate.
Croaker's cloak fluttered as he generated a gust of wind that caught him before he impacted against the entrance and gently set him on his feet.
Harry watched the Unspeakable carefully. Croaker blocked the doorway, and thus his options were limited. He could not use any Destructive-Class curses, lest the doorway collapse and trap him inside. Croaker smiled wanly, and negligently flicked his wrist.
It took a split second for Harry to realize that his adversary hadn't moved the hand holding his wand, which meant-
Prodigious though his dueling skills were, there were other hardened Aurors and Unspeakables with more experience than he and were fully capable of besting him on occasion.
His shielding skills, however, were incomparable. A brilliant white light blossomed outwards from his wand, forming a nearly solid dome that interposed itself between him and the thrown dagger. Harry braced himself for the impact, grimacing as the dagger was splintered tip-first, sending tremors down his wand arm. Even as the finely carved hilt was ground into fine, powdered dust, he could only feel horror as he heard the triumphantly roared "Avada Kedavra!"
The dome protecting him was cloven in twine as the emerald herald of death lanced through his flawless shield, rendering it useless. The Killing Curse was unblockable.
He was blown off his feet, and as the life ebbed from his body, his mind barely registered the glass of the mirror behind him shattering against the body thrown into it. His lips released a final sigh as his back met the ground, and his eyes were closed to the world.
Harry was dead to his Earth, but not to another.