|The Potter Games
Author: Abbybee PM
Harry Potter has fallen, and the wizarding world finds itself in the clutches of Lord Voldemort. What will happen when he hosts a tournament, fought on the grounds of Hogwarts, in which twelve hand-chosen young wizards and witches must fight to the death?Rated: Fiction T - English - Suspense/Fantasy - Hermione G. - Chapters: 3 - Words: 9,971 - Reviews: 5 - Favs: 6 - Follows: 14 - Updated: 11-14-12 - Published: 01-26-12 - id: 7777947
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
This marks the beginning of my first fanfiction ever. It is going to be a Harry Potter/Hunger Games crossover of sorts, so yes, it is very AU. I'm going to try to stay as true to the details of the last book as I can, but I can't make any promises, so I apologize if I mess up on something. Anyway, this has been a very special plot to me for a long time, but I cannot take credit for it. I do not remember the name of the person who first brought it to my attention, but I did get her permission to play with it as much as I liked. So...here I am, playing with it. Hehe.
Anyway, it is written in Hermione's POV, seeing as she and I understand each other. Um...what else? Oh, and I'm not J.K. Rowling. These are NOT my characters, and strictly speaking, this was NOT my original idea. I just manipulated it like it was.
...And I think that's it? Enjoy!
The cold, crisp night air nipped at Hermione's skin the moment she passed through the oak front doors of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, the wind tossing a bit of hair across her face and drying the tear tracks that stained it. She gasped for breath, her heart thundering madly against her ribcage and her blood rushing in her ears as she stumbled down the front steps onto the grounds, her vision clouded with hot tears that had yet to escape down her cheeks. Her grip on Harry's ankles was vice-like despite the fact that every inch of her shook, and she purposely kept her gaze averted from Ron's, who was adjacent from her and hauling Harry onward by the wrists.
Everything had happened so quickly, and even now she struggled to grasp exactly what was going on. The battle had been raging around her, and she watched every bit of the school she loved crumble under the angry spells of hundreds upon hundreds of wizards, good and bad. Due to the utter pandemonium, there was no way for her to know if they were winning or not; all she knew was that that damned snake was still alive, and before they could kill it – before they managed to take out Voldemort's final horcrux – he'd cornered Harry in the Great Hall, right in the center of a suddenly silent crowd. Death Eaters and do-gooders alike lowered their wands and turned their heads; she and Ron hovered right on the inside of the circle, and she vaguely remembered grabbing his arm, her throat dry as she rasped, "Do something." It wasn't as though she expected him to step forward and save the day while she hung around on the sidelines – oh, no, that couldn't be farther from the truth. Instead, her command was directed towards herself more than anyone else. It was actually a question of sorts, or at least it would have been if she'd had the time and concentration to make it so. Should she do something? Should they both do something? Should someone do something?
...They should have.
Even now, Hermione didn't know what had come over them. She and Ron both knew that their task hadn't been fulfilled – the snake was still alive, and Voldemort was still relatively impenetrable – but something held them back. They were frozen; the look on Harry's face kept their feet glued to the stone floor. It was a look of resignation – he knew what was going to happen – and yet the way he held his head and the way his fingers tightened around his wand gave Hermione a feeling of false hope. Maybe he knew something they didn't? Maybe Voldemort was weaker than they had previously thought?
The jet of emerald light erupted from the end of the Elder Wand, and before Harry even had a chance to block it, it hit him square in the chest.
The entire Great Hall suddenly flew into action. Angry shouts, anguished screams emitted from every corner of the room, and almost immediately, mobs of witches and wizards rushed towards Voldemort, throwing caution to the winds and letting panic and anger get the best of them.
As for Ron and Hermione, they moved as one without even so much as a glance at one another; neither of them cried out, but they were completely aware of what had just taken place. It seemed that at this point, words were useless. Their faces were ashen as they charged forward, Hermione seizing the fallen Harry's ankles while Ron grabbed his wrists, and, ignoring the pain and sadness that was falling fast upon them like a ton of bricks, they lifted his body and began moving outside.
Blinking, Hermione found that several more tears trickled down her cheeks. What were they doing? Harry was gone, and they both knew it, so why were they dragging his body as far away from Voldemort as possible? This question was useless. She knew exactly why they were doing it; they were doing it because Harry deserved it. They were doing it because, dead or alive, they didn't want to let Voldemort "win" him. He had never wanted to back down, and now it was Ron and Hermione's turn to make sure that that didn't happen. They had to find him a resting place – they had to take him somewhere where he would be able to "rest in peace," as it were, and the remarkable thing was that neither of them had to say this out loud. They had had the same thought the moment they'd watched the back of Harry's head hit the floor of the Great Hall with a sickening crack, and now was no different.
"There they are! They've got him!"
Hermione's hair whipped her in the face because of how quickly her head snapped around, her glazed wide eyes peering over her shoulder. Five Death Eaters emerged from the entrance hall into the moonlight, and Hermione felt her cheeks grow hot.
No. No, no, no. They had to move faster.
"Ron..." she gasped, turning her attention back to him. "Ron, we've got to go faster, we've...we've got to! Go!"
Gritting his teeth, Ron looked wildly over one shoulder and then the other, picking up the pace as much as he could. Tear tracks were evident on his face as well, but Hermione reminded herself that they would all have time to mourn later. The sound of the Death Eaters' pounding feet on the grass grew nearer and nearer with every moment that passed, and Hermione bit her lip as she struggled to keep a grasp on Harry's ankles. A curse suddenly whizzed past her ear, and she let out a surprised yelp in spite of herself. Her wand...where was it? Panting, she looked down at her pocket, but she knew better than to drop Harry in order to retrieve it. Well, "knew better" probably wasn't the right phrase. Any normal person would have done whatever it took to defend themselves at a time like this, but there was no way that Hermione was going to slow her pace.
Suddenly, though, she became aware that she was gaining on Ron. Snapping her gaze to his, she furrowed her brow in confusion. "What...? What are you doing? Ron, come on!" she urged, but when Ron finally brought his gaze to hers, she fell into a shock-induced silence. Was this real? Her eyes widened, and she shook her head, bits of her hair continuing to fall from the ponytail she had tried to tame it with.
"Ron, no...please, no, just...just keep going," she begged, but even as the words left her lips she found that she too was slowing her pace.
The moonlight revealed several more tears escaping down Ron's dirty cheeks, but he kept his gaze fixed firmly on Hermione's as he slowed to a stop. He didn't want her to blame him – he only wanted her to understand what he was doing and why he was doing it. When he spoke, his voice was weak, but he tried to keep it steady enough so that he could be understood. "Hermione, we can't, we...we need to run. You need to run -"
"Ron, please. Please, just...just go, come on, we'll...we'll be okay," Hermione interrupted, the pleading tone completely evident in her voice by now. She had also halted, but she refused to drop Harry's ankles, allowing the tears to flow fast from her eyes as she began to sob uncontrollably. The dams had broken. All the strength she'd been displaying was melting like snow, and Ron saw it coming a mile away.
But, that didn't mean that it was easy to watch.
"No, Hermione, come on," he said, trying to keep his voice as gentle as possible despite the fact that the Death Eaters and their curses were drawing closer to them every second. Setting Harry's arms down, he hurried to Hermione's side and seized her around the shoulders, saying, "We've got to, Hermione. We've got to."
Looking into his eyes, she knew it hurt him just as much as it hurt her. But still, she couldn't bring herself to move. For the second time that night, her feet felt like they were glued to the earth, but she did manage to drop Harry's ankles just in time for Ron to practically lift her off the ground and turn, letting her go and pushing her in front of him as he looked anxiously at the swiftly approaching Death Eaters.
"Go! Hermione, I mean it! I'm right behind you, now move!" he shouted, and even though guilt bubbled inside her like a hot potion, Hermione did as he said and ran, her breath ragged and tears still making their way down her face.
The Death Eaters caught on right away, and three of them took off after Ron and Hermione while the others busied themselves with Harry's body. Looking over her shoulder, Hermione saw this, and it took everything in her power (as well as Ron's gentle shoves) to keep from skidding to a stop and cursing every last one of them into oblivion.
The curses came more frequently now, and she and Ron ran doubled-over in order to keep from being blasted in the skull. A cloud was making its way across the moon, making it difficult to see exactly where they were going. Several times Hermione stumbled over a bit of rubble, but she quickly regained her composure and continued onward, peering over her shoulder every few seconds to make sure that Ron was still there. It didn't matter what was happening; if Ron stopped, she was going to stop too, no matter what he had to say about it. And that was a promise.
At the Death Eater's command, ropes shot from the end of his wand, entwining themselves around Ron's ankles and sending him falling forward with a yell and a resounding thud. They quickly grew and bound the rest of his body, but aside from swearing rather loudly, Ron made no attempt to alert Hermione. If he had it his way, she would keep going, find his family, and disapparate to safety with them. But, unfortunately for him, she looked over her shoulder just in time to see him lying face-down in the grass, and instinct took over.
"No!" she cried, skidding to a halt and making a mad dash towards him. The Death Eater who had taken him down was upon him now, and as Hermione drew closer she fumbled for her wand with shaking hands, trying to free it from her pocket. She was vaguely aware of Ron shouting something at her, but she was too focused on her wand to pay him any heed. Before she could take it out and try her hand at rescuing him, though...
"Not so fast, Mudblood!" a rough voice growled, and Hermione suddenly had the sensation of being hit by a truck. A massive hooded Death Eater flew out of nowhere and tackled her to the ground, and not only was she aware of the fact that several of her fingers snapped in ways they weren't supposed to, but her head also met the ground uncomfortably hard, resulting in shadows at the edge of her range of sight and a massive headache.
Everything was fuzzy, and her head felt as though it was filled with lead. There was something very large keeping her pinned to the damp earth, and possible concussion or not, claustrophobia made Hermione start to struggle. People were talking somewhere nearby, and Ron was still shouting, but she couldn't make out what he was saying. He sounded angry...or scared. Or both. Desperate to free herself from whatever was on top of her, her struggling intensified, and it was then that her captor finally spoke again.
"Come now, Muddy," he cooed, his lips just centimeters from her ear, "let's make this easier on both of us, hm?"
Fenrir Greyback chuckled, his hot breath and metallic odor enveloping Hermione like a patch of fog. She tried to open her eyes, but when she managed to stars popped before them, causing her head to reel and her stomach to twist uncomfortably. As badly as she wanted to escape, she knew that fighting against Greyback right now was a waste of her strength, and that was already being sapped away.
"He'll want to see 'em," she heard one of the Death Eaters say, seeing as Ron had quieted for the time being.
"See 'em?" another one chimed in. "What for? He'll want 'em dead anyway."
"Hear, hear..." Greyback growled, his voice rumbling all around her. She felt him shift his weight, and she was suddenly horribly aware of his tongue sliding up her left cheek. Fruitlessly she writhed beneath him, but all he did was chuckle again, using a clawed finger to move a bit of hair out of her face. "I say we just save him the trouble. What say you, Muddy? I'll be gentle, I promise."
"Don't you dare touch her, Greyback!" Ron snarled, and in spite of herself, Hermione felt a wave of compassion for him wash over her. "If you even so much as think about hurting her..."
A sound somewhere between a bark and a snarl emitted from Greyback's throat. "Those are strong words coming from a bloke who's wrapped up like a bloody sausage," he retaliated, and Hermione could tell that a smile crossed his face as he added, "And you're too late. I've already thought about it."
"Keep your bloody tongue in your mouth, Greyback," one of the other Death Eaters said, and Hermione heard him heave Ron to his feet. "C'mon. We're takin' 'em to the Dark Lord. If he hands 'em over to us, I don't care what you do, but until then let's just do our job."
With that, Greyback stood and seized Hermione by the upper arms, pulling her roughly to her feet and emitting a raspy laugh when she swayed on the spot, stars still popping before her eyes. "Don't worry, Muddy, I'll keep you on your feet," he cooed, tightening his grip on her and pulling her in to him, chuckling when he realized how much she was trembling.
What had she done to deserve this? What had any of them done, Harry especially? This wasn't how it was supposed to go – this wasn't how it was supposed to happen. Good was always supposed to conquer evil, and Hermione had always assumed that she was fighting for the good side. Why, then, was Harry dead? Why, then, was she being dragged, battered and bloody, across the grounds of Hogwarts by a werewolf?
By the time they reached the castle – or rather, what was left of it – her vision had cleared. Her head was still fuzzy and reeled at random intervals, but she was at least able to function and take in her surroundings as she and Greyback crossed through the entrance hall and into the Great Hall beyond. It seemed as though the entire population of those fighting in the castle had been rounded up and brought there; families stood huddled together, couples stood with arms around each other's shoulders, but no matter what type of reassurance they tried to give to their loved ones, their faces remained the same. They were pale and tired; everyone's sunken, exhausted-looking eyes were fixed on the raised platform where the staff used to sit, and Hermione couldn't help but follow each and every one of their gazes.
The staff table was still there, but due to the broken windows and mottled walls surrounding it, it was much dirtier than she remembered. Bits of broken glass and stone were strewn across it, and there, lying silent and still upon its surface, was Harry. Panic began to take hold of Hermione in spite of herself; the moment she laid eyes on her dear friend she gasped and began to fight against Fenrir even more. The effort was useless, but she didn't seem to care. If she had managed to escape his grasp, though, what exactly would she have done? She couldn't move Harry – the Death Eaters would see to it that that didn't happen. And what about Ron? When her mind traveled to him, her eyes followed suit; she had lost track of him, but now she could see that he was being pushed along in front of her, struggling in his bounds and continuously looking over his shoulder. Hermione's heart swelled, and as she stumbled along in Fenrir's grasp, she tried to meet his eyes. She wanted to say something to him, something that might reassure him that she was all right; but, before she managed to even open her mouth, a blood-curdling cry emitted from the crowd on her right, claiming all of her attention.
"That's my son!" Mrs. Weasley screamed, and Hermione watched as she fought her way to the front of the mob, Mr. Weasley trailing along after her, pale-faced and worried-looking. The crowd was jostled this way and that as the rest of the Weasleys moved forward as well, cries of anger leaving their lips when they saw their brother in the clutches of a Death Eater. "Ron, Ronnie! Hermione! No, please!" Mrs. Weasley continued, and every one of the Weasleys made a defensive move forward before their path was blocked by several Death Eaters. Hermione felt as though her heart had leapt into her throat, and there was an ache in her chest that she couldn't seem to shake. This wasn't what the Weasleys needed – or rather, this wasn't what the Weasleys deserved. Harry had been like a son to them, and now that he was gone, Ron being danger was the last thing they needed. And after Fred...
She wished dearly that she could somehow return Ron to them, no matter if she got out alive or not; after all, her own parents no longer remembered who she was, so it wasn't like she had any blood relatives who would miss her.
But, before Hermione's mind could wander any farther, Fenrir jerked her to a halt in front of the raised platform where Harry's body and the staff table stood, the half moon outside casting an eerie silver glow around both of them.
"My Lord," the Death Eater holding Ron said, bowing his head, "these two were the ones who tried to take Potter's body to safety. We were wondering what you would like done with them?"
Peering up at the table, Hermione was almost surprised to see Lord Voldemort standing behind it, his piercing red eyes traveling slowly and carefully between her and Ron. She shouldn't have been surprised – of course he would be hovering around his kill like a hungry and territorial animal – but how she hadn't noticed him before, she didn't know. Now that she had, though, she found that she couldn't take her eyes off him.
He didn't answer the Death Eater's question right away, but Hermione could see the wheels turning in his horribly ugly head as he stood there, his arms crossed and his wand absentmindedly tapping the air. She had never seen him up close, and even though instinct urged her to be afraid, she found that she had no intention of giving him that satisfaction. So, when he stepped toward them with something like a smile playing across his lips, she kept her head held high, trying to ignore the fact that it had begun to pound and that her broken fingers were reminding her that they were...well, broken.
Voldemort's bare feet made no sound on the stone as he descended onto the very last step, still standing at least two heads above them. His gaze traveled first to Ron, and a high, cold wheeze slid through his lips. It was clearly meant to be a laugh of some kind. "You know that I should punish you, boy," he hissed, and fear clutched at Hermione's heart. If he touched Ron...if he even looked like he was going to harm him...A lump formed in her throat, and Fenrir's grip on her tightened as she strained toward Ron and his captor, every bit of her tense and rigid. "But," Voldemort continued, allowing his attention to meander momentarily to the rest of the Weasleys, "even I know that spilling magical blood is a terrible waste, no matter how much of a traitor you may be. And after all, as a merciful lord, I think I should give you some time to mourn for your...'dear friend.' Defending him was a foolish move, but as I said...I will show you mercy."
A great wave of relief washed over Hermione, and she noticeably relaxed upon hearing Voldemort's decision. Ron, however, wasn't satisfied. As the Death Eater dragged him over to his family on the sidelines, he continued to struggle, his eyes wide as galleons and refusing to leave Hermione and Fenrir.
"Come on now, Ronnie, come on," Mrs. Weasley whispered, her face still pale as death despite the fact that her son was being brought to safety. She moved forward and laid a trembling albeit gentle hand on his shoulder while the Death Eater removed his bounds, but the moment he was free, her gentle reassurance turned into a vice-like grip on his sweater. Forced into an awkward sideways slump as the Death Eater removed the ropes, Ron launched himself forward the second they were gone, his jaw clenched and his ears burning scarlet with anger. Every head in the vicinity turned to investigate, including Hermione's, and she would've said something to him had his father not seized him by the arms and forced him to stand back. Poor Mr. Weasley was having one hell of a time restraining his son, and Bill eventually stepped forward to help.
"Ron, no, you've got-"
"Bill, c'mon, let me GO!"
"What's your plan, Ron, hm? What is it? You haven't got a wand, none of us do!"
"I-don't-need-a-bloody-wand, Bill, I'll take them down with my bare hands! My-bare-hands!"
The dull pain ebbing somewhere behind Hermione's ribcage intensified – a pang of heartache overcame her – and she was just about to open her mouth to say something with the hope of calming Ron down...
"And you..." Voldemort hissed, interrupting anything she might've said and causing everyone else in the Great Hall to fall silent, their ears straining to hear what was going on. Voldemort's volume had decreased greatly, and when Hermione brought her wide, slightly watery eyes to his face for the second time, she saw that a look of the utmost disgust was plastered to it. He examined her carefully, and it did nothing for her nerves when Fenrir spoke up, his grip simply refusing to slacken.
"I was hoping, my Lord, that you might let me...deal with this one," he said, though judging by the look Voldemort fixed him with, his request wasn't being considered.
"You expect to be rewarded, Greyback?"
There was a brief pause while Fenrir searched for the right words, but he didn't have a chance to find them before Voldemort cut him short.
"You have caught one of the fugitives, but to be honest, this mudblood doesn't seem like that much of a threat – or rather, it doesn't seem as though you worked very hard in order to catch it and bring it here. Surely you were no match for his brute strength?"
Voldemort bent forward so that his face hovered just inches in front of Hermione's as he addressed her, and although she narrowed her eyes and tried to hold his gaze, she found that she had to look away, squeezing her eyelids shut and turning her head.
"I only reward the extraordinary, Fenrir," she heard Voldemort say, and Greyback gave a noticeable huff of disappointment, his rancid breath once again wandering into Hermione's midst.
"I want you to put this mudblood with the others," he finished, and this got Fenrir's attention.
"With the Azkaban bunch?" he barked.
Upon hearing this, Hermione's eyes snapped open once more. Azkaban? Her gaze flew to Voldemort, who she could see was now pacing up and down the bottom step of the platform.
"Is that not what I said? Now, make no mistake, Fenrir – I want the mudbloods punished. But before I can decide how to do it, Azkaban is the best place to keep them. Now move. We have much to do."
Hermione could scarcely believe how quickly panic set in. Fenrir's grip tightened so much that she felt his clawed fingers cutting into the flesh of her upper arms, but she didn't let that stop her from fighting against him harder than she had previously. Her heart thundered in her chest – it was trying to escape, it seemed like – and she was unable to stop the tears from pouring down her cheeks.
"No! NO! No, not Azkaban! Please! Please!" she screamed, but she wasn't the only one shouting. The Weasleys were all bellowing threats and fighting fruitlessly against the Death Eaters blocking their path, but Bill still held on to Ron, knowing exactly what would happen if he managed to escape. He was having a difficult time of it, though; the farther away Hermione was dragged, the stronger and more violent Ron seemed to get. But, Bill's grip prevailed.
Hot tears blurred Hermione's vision, and she could feel how flushed her cheeks were. Still, she didn't stop struggling, and her desperation grew more heightened by the second. She kicked and thrashed and writhed like a wild animal, and despite Fenrir's snarled threats, she kept going.
Suddenly, she felt one of her arms rip free; this was her chance. Bolting forward and ripping her other arm out of Fenrir's grasp, she stumbled before righting herself and sprinting across the open space, her sights set on the Weasleys. Bill's eyes flicked up just in time to see this, because by the time she skidded beneath the arms of the Death Eaters, he had already let his brother go, allowing the two of them to collide with one another.
"Hermione!" Ron exclaimed, his voice some strange hybrid of a gasp, a yelp, and a scream. His arms clamped firmly around Hermione, who had buried herself in him and was now gripping him much too hard as she felt the hands of the surrounding Death Eaters already trying to pry her from his grasp. She could barely breathe, her chest heaving as she sobbed and struggled for breath all at once.
"Don't, please don't, I...I can't...Ron..." she whimpered, Ron being the only one who heard her amongst the chaos happening around them.
"I know," he murmured, clearly worried as he edged this way and that, trying vainly to find a way out of the cocoon of people they had trapped themselves in. "They won't get you, you're fine, you're-"
"OI, PUT THE WAND DOWN!"
In spite of herself, Hermione looked up at the sound of Bill's voice. She had never heard him shout like that, and following his gaze she saw a Death Eater standing just inside the mob, its wand pointed straight at her and Ron. There was a half-second pause, and in that time a decision seemed to be made. Two massive Death Eaters (one of them was Fenrir; Hermione would know his grip anywhere) stepped forward and wrenched her away from Ron.
Panic seized her yet again. She didn't want to panic – she didn't want to overreact and make a terrible situation worse – but she couldn't help herself. The horrors of the day wouldn't allow her to think clearly anymore, and just as she made to bite one of her captors, she was struck on the head by something large and blunt. Darkness took over all sense of time and place, but just before she slumped forward in the arms of the Death Eaters, she was vaguely aware of Ron shouting her name.