The Nightmare Man
Summary: In the depths of the Ministry, there is a cell for the world's most dangerous man… and he wants out.
Warnings: Time travel, OOC-characters, Light!bashing, Twisted!Harry, Evil!Harry, violence, mention of gore. Yeah, stuff like that.
Disclaimers: I don't own Harry Potter nor do I make any money writing this.
A little extra and update!
The prequel is now up!
Birth of a Nightmare Man is now up as the prequel to this story.
Plus you get a little drabble from The Nightmare Man below this, because I thought, what the hell, why just an update to tell you guys about the prequel? You get to read a little drabble and then jump over to the prequel if you feel like it.
Either way, read and enjoy!
Harrison's mind wasn't very organized. It was a maze that people would get lost in, because the rooms kept changing, the memories kept running around. He was perfectly capable of breaking into people's minds but not very good at structuring his own. Few people knew that of course, because he had gotten the hang of throwing people out whenever they tried to sneak into his head.
He didn't like the feeling much, otherwise it would be quite fun to see them get lost in his own memories. But having his mind invaded reminded him too much of old times, when he was young and foolish and trusted people blindly.
Lucian had tried it several times over the years, with Harrison's permission of course, and was by now the only one Harrison was comfortable letting into his own head. Lucian never passed up on an opportunity to hone his skills, and found it a challenge to not end up at the memory when Harrison was at a masquerade in Venice, as Harrison usually led him there and refused to tell him when the hell the Nightmare Lord had ended up at that particular party.
"Master?" Lucian said one day. "May I look into your mind?"
"Why now?" Harrison asked. "Don't we have things to do around here?"
"Not at the moment, no," Lucian said. "Everyone are doing their own thing and I have nothing better to do."
"At this point, anything else would be more productive than digging through my head. Harry's room?"
"He left for school a week ago, it doesn't need to be cleared from dust yet. Please?"
Harrison watched Lucian's pleading face.
"You have strange interests," he concluded and Lucian took this as permission as he sat down opposite of Harrison. "After this you better start forming a hobby of some kind, or I'll have you clean up in the dungeons."
"Says the one who considers torture a hobby," Lucian said and slipped through Harrison's mental defences.
Harrison could feel Lucian, a small pressure, but ignored it. Instead he let Lucian have a wander around in his head while he kept on reading.
He didn't realize how far Lucian had gone when the man came back and said:
"Master, why do you remember two George Weasley?"
Harrison looked up.
"How bloody long back ago did you wander?" he asked. "That… I haven't… it's been a long time since I met that first George Weasley, if you're referring to one of them missing an ear."
"Yes, one of them was missing an ear. Is that a past George Weasley?"
"Sort of," Harrison said.
He could feel it now, the memories resurfacing after Lucian's little walk. Long hours spent playing chess, George confiding in him, George fighting for him…
The coldness of Azkaban that even now made him shiver. That damp cell underneath the Ministry never got that cold at least. He could move at Azkaban, though, so he wasn't sure which cell he hated less.
"I didn't mean for you to see those memories," Harrison said. "I hardly think of them myself."
"I apologise, master, I merely…"
"I never said you couldn't see them. I just… don't think about those times."
That George Weasley was vastly different from the one he knew in this time, the one who still had his brother. Those two were probably driving Elise insane by now, since they didn't have Severus to drive insane anymore.
"Do you miss that George? You seemed… close."
"We were, in a way… everyone else left, but not him. He stayed with me."
It felt like an eternity ago. Well, it was well over a thousand years ago. Not quite two thousand, but probably not that far off. Harrison wasn't good with years. He lost track of them far too easily, but the memories remained, even if they lay mostly forgotten in a dark corner.
"Can you tell me some more… of yourself when you were young?"
Harrison looked over at Lucian, who came closer and plucked the book from his hands.
"What are you doing?" Harrison asked. "You've never asked me that before."
Lucian sat down next to him.
"I never saw those memories before. Now I'm curious. You shouldn't have made us curious."
"I didn't. You just were."
Harrison watched Lucian for a bit. It wouldn't do much harm, he supposed, talking about himself from that long ago.
"Haven't you seen George though?" Harrison said. "The one with the missing ear?"
"When would I have met him?"
"As a ghost," Harrison replied.
"I don't remember that."
"Ah, you lot did forget some things on purpose to make me less upset," Harrison realized. "Maybe it'll come with time. Now, do you want to hear something specific?"
"You choose, master."
"Alright then. I suppose I should start with something funny. Hmm… oh, when I was thirteen I magically blew up my aunt like a balloon…"