Conceiving the Impossible
Words: 3 822
"Sleep, you little willow young; yet it is the winter. Yet so sleep, birch and rose, hyacinth and heather. Yet it's long until the spring, ere the rowan flowers bring. Sleep, you little willow, yet it is the winter."
Harry recognized the melody, although he didn't know the words or the voice singing them. It was a nearly forgotten memory, like a pleasant dream disappearing when you wake, filling him with a sense of belonging and love. He felt safe and warm; more so than he could remember feeling.
"Eye of sunshine gaze at you; in sunshine's arms you rock. Soon will green the forest path, raising every bloom. Yet a little sunshine-plea; willow little, be so green. Eye of sunshine sees you; in sunshine's arms you rock." (*)
A hand was stroking through his hair, slowly and gently. It was soothing; nice. He didn't want to open his eyes as he felt so content, yet sleep was slipping from him. Soon keeping his eyes closed became a chore and he knew that he had no choice but to face the world. He stretched his arms and legs, feeling stiff sheets, and a soft pillow. He recognized the smell of the room. It was too clean. He was in the Hospital Wing. He couldn't remember why though.
The hand pulled away and the singing stopped. He opened his eyes and looked to the side where the voice had come from. All he could see was a human shaped blur, with a lot of green and black in the mix, sitting next to the bed. He reached for his glasses and the figure passed them to him, pressing them into his hands. With the lenses in front of his eyes he could see clearly again.
He recoiled, trying to get away. He remembered what had happened, and the sooner he could get away the better. It was all crazy. He got stuck in his sheets and fell of the bed on the other side. Before he could hit the floor a pair of strong hands caught him. Harry looked at who had caught him and saw the blond man from before. He began struggling again, more persistently. "Let me go!" he cried out.
"Harry," the dark haired man – Loki, he thought his name was – said. Harry looked at him, seeing that there was a hurt expression on his face, but he didn't care. These two people were insane and he didn't want to talk with them. He didn't care that they might be dangerous. He wasn't going to play along any more.
He kicked out with his feet, managing to untangle himself from the sheets, and he got his feet to the ground, getting better leverage to try and make the other man – Thor – release him. Thor was really strong though as he had suspected, the man's hands like vices around his arms. "Let me go!" he demanded again.
"Do as he says," Loki said emotionlessly.
"But- " Harry could feel the vibrations of the word as much as he could hear it.
"Restraining him will hardly earn us any trust."
The grip on his arms loosened, and Harry jerked free, stumbling several steps back. He didn't have his wand. He was in a blue and white striped pajama issued by Madam Pomfrey. He felt naked and vulnerable. What had happened? Why was he in the Hospital Wing? He couldn't remember anything after Thor had said that he was his father. And that could not be the truth. It was absurd.
"What do you want from me?" he asked shakily. "Why would you say that you are my parents? I- I don't know who you are, but you're insane if you expect me to believe anything you've said. I know who my parents were and they're dead!"
"Harry, please calm down," Loki said, rising from the chair he had been sitting on, next to the bed. That was not the right thing to do. The man was tall and Harry felt dwarfed by him, getting intimidated as he loomed over him, backing away further trying to keep the distance between them. He also felt sick knowing that it must have been him stroking his hair before, singing. They really must be crazy. This man truly believed that he had been Lily Potter.
"No, I'm not gonna calm down!" he shouted. "I want answers! Why would you tell me that you are my parents? Why would you want to hurt me like that? My parents are dead! They died to protect me! I will not allow you to destroy the memory of them! And you, you say you're brothers! You can't have a child together, that's not possible and… and it's sick!" he spat the words out.
"Mr. Potter, why are you out of bed?" Madam Pomfrey had come rushing out of her office, wand in hand, searching for any threat as he heard the raised voices.
"I'm not staying here!" Harry yelled. "Not with those two!" He gesticulated wildly in the direction of the two men, who'd been watching him sleep. That thought did not help Harry calm down.
"Fine!" she said with a brand of exasperation that she alone seemed to have mastered after trying to take care of stubborn children who got into weird accidents for twenty years. "Gentlemen, I will have to ask you to leave. Mr. Potter, get back in that bed this instant!"
"No! Not until they're gone!"
"Harry," Thor said, taking a couple of steps in Harry's direction.
Harry held up his hand, as if that would ward the man off. "Stay away from me!" He thought about running away, to go and hide in Gryffindor Tower. The Fat Lady would not let them in without the password, and if words came to worst he could fly his broom outside the window.
"Don't make me stun you, Mr. Potter! You will not leave, you are still not well!" Madam Pomfrey had apparently been able to tell what he was thinking about doing.
"It's fine, we'll leave," said Loki placatingly to them both. "We will, leave, Harry. You don't need to go. We never wished to upset you."
Harry stared incredulously at the man. If they hadn't wanted to upset him, they had a strange way of showing it.
Madam Pomfrey huffed, seemingly in agreement with Harry on that point. "Be on your way then, Mr. Potter needs to calm down, and you are not helping."
Loki motioned for Thor to follow him, and the blond man followed him reluctantly, after looking at Harry once more with large blue eyes. Harry backed some more so that they would not stand in their path, making sure that there always was a large gap between them. They said nothing more as they left, only giving him sad looks, making Harry both pleased and disappointed. If they were his parents, if they believed that they were, wouldn't they fight for him? Apparently not.
"Get back in that bed this instant," Madam Pomfrey commanded him before the two men had completely excited the room, and keeping his eyes on them, so that he would know where they were Harry reluctantly followed her orders.
"How long was I out for?" he asked, setting himself on the bed, with a pillow propped up behind his back. The Matron handed him a second one, making him more comfortable.
"Three days, this time. I do not appreciate having you try to break your previous record of how long you can make your stays under my care."
"Three days?" Harry had not anticipated that. He didn't feel like he had been out for that long. "What happened?"
Madam Pomfrey pursed her lips. "Shock, followed by magical exhaustion and a reaction to dark magic."
"What?" Harry could understand the first. Shock, most definitely. Now in hindsight, it all felt like a bad joke, to incredulous to be taken seriously, but at the time, he knew that something within him had burst.
"I would never have let those two stay with you, but the Headmaster insisted. It's their fault you are with me to begin with. No one will tell me exactly what happened; only that something they told you shocked you, making your magic react. You had a very large burst of accidental magic, hence the exhaustion, and that was further impaired by the presence of dark magic, though no one will say what the source for that was either besides it having something to do with you-know-who."
She flinched. "Don't' say his name."
"Sorry," Harry wasn't sorry though. He was just annoyed at no one wanting to use Voldemort's name. "They won't tell you what happened? Why not?"
The woman sighed. "I don't know, Mr. Potter. I can only argue so long with the Headmaster."
"Okay. I suppose you can't help it if they won't tell you anything."
"Which is exactly why they should tell me." She huffed and gave him a glass of water, which he accepted gratefully, drinking it down.
"Mr. Weasley and Ms. Granger has been here to see you."
"Oh. Do you think they'll be back?"
She snorted out a small laugh. "I don't doubt it. Were it not for that I would drive them out when visiting hours are over, or that they have classes to attend they would still be here."
"And…" Harry swallowed, trying to get some moisture in his mouth which had gone dry despite the water he'd just drank. "And those two?" he said pointedly, sure that she would know who he meant.
"They brought you hear on Sunday night, it's Wednesday afternoon now, and they have barely left your side since. Besides that first evening. The Headmaster said that they were allowed access to you, that it was for your safety and that he could in no good conscience keep them away from you. The only thing that's kept me from chucking them out despite his word is that they seemed to have a positive effect on you. Their presence made you calmer, and as far as I could tell improved your recovery, until you woke up now that is." She gave him a look, and Harry had to break eye contact.
"When can I leave?" he asked, fidgeting with the covers that were lying next to him, or partly under him as it were.
"I want to keep you overnight for observation," Madam Pomfrey said, sounding more brisk again. "If you feel alright you can leave for classes in the morning."
Harry groaned. "I must have missed so much. Three days?"
"Ms. Granger will surely help you."
"Yeah. And…" he grimaced. He had missed his detention with Umbridge. The professor was sure to punish him for that. He likely had a whole new week of detentions to look forward to.
- Conceiving the Impossible-
Three days earlier
"What do we do now?" Thor asked, and Loki sighed, bringing up his hand to cradle Harry's head so that it wouldn't hang limply. Small pieces of paper – or rather parchment were still falling through the air, some pieces were singed, the edges dark. He looked around the office, taking in the destruction that had been left in the wake of the fall out. Really the only thing left standing was the walls. Some of the items that were now lying in splinters all over the floor would be impossible to repair. Not that it bothered him much. From what he was beginning to understand, Dumbledore deserved that and more for his actions, and more to the point; inactions.
"We'll take Harry to the school's Hospital Wing. I think that there will be some time before he wakes up, and we should make sure that he is comfortable till then."
Loki gave an exasperated sigh. "Really? Are you so out of tune with the mortals? I remember you telling me that you had travelled the world for quite some time and it was not all that long ago." When Thor didn't show any hint of more understanding, Loki rolled his eyes. "Healers, Thor, hospitals have healers."
"Ah, that does sound advisable. We shall bring Harry to this Hospital Wing."
Loki rolled his eyes again.
His brother continued with a question. "Would you care to explain to me what that creature was?"
Loki sighed quietly, and began to walk. He could walk and talk at the same time, he wished for Harry to be looked over soon, and he did not trust his own assessment, he was no healer. "I am not completely certain," he answered. "I don't know how it could come out from Harry, if it used him as a gateway somehow or actually exists inside of him. What I can tell you is that I did recognize it. It was Voldemort and it has something to do with the scar." He brushed his fingers lightly over the curiously shaped scar on Harry's forehead. It was read and irritated, some blood had escaped from it as it cracked open when Voldemort forced his way back in through it.
They were standing on the stairs, which began to move down slowly. Loki noted that Thor was glaring at nothing as the stairs revolved and decided that his brother must have had some unfortunate interaction with the stairs. It would have made him smile in amusement and mockery were it not for the grave situation they now found themselves in.
"My knowledge of magic may be extensive, but my knowledge on the exact working on wizarding magic, especially the darker branches is limited," he admitted, though it displeased him to do so. Once more he found himself acting out of character on the account of Harry. He resigned himself to that this was a trend which was likely to continue.
"I only studied human magic for a few short years. Before my life as Lily I never bothered as the magic used in the other eight realms is of a far more powerful and practical nature in most cases, at least that was true until the time when most contact with Midgard stopped. From what I learned at my time at Hogwarts they have evolved some and there are witches and wizards capable of impressive magic. I don't know what it was we saw; only that it was bad as you so eloquently put it. Dumbledore will know more, and that does not make me happy."
"I met this Dumbledore while I was outside the study. He said that he would resume dinner and that you would know where to find him."
Loki nodded. "I know where he went, but first we take care of Harry."
They walked down an empty corridor in silence. Portraits that lined their path gathered together in their paintings, whispering as they passed, and some followed, gossiping as they went.
"Is there some way to avoid being overheard? This place is very strange and we are being watched from every angle. I do not like it. I would like to continue our conversation, though only if it is safe."
Loki shifted his grip on Harry to have one of his hands free. He might not truly need hand movements to make magic work, but he was feeling slightly drained after administering the spell that had contained the destruction caused by Harry's magic to the Headmaster's office, and transferring their emotions to him in the effort to make him calm. Using hand movements and saying the incantation out loud, would spare him energy that he might come to need soon. "Muffliato," he muttered. The spell was of Severus' invention. The man had shared it whit him before they had their falling out. If he thought more about the man he would end up all maudlin, so he forced himself to not think any more about it once the spell was cast. "No one will be able to hear what we say now."
"Good. Who is this Voldemort? Heimdall mentioned him and I could hear the hatred you feel for the bearer of the name."
"He is the man who killed me and James Potter. He is what wizards call a Dark Lord, a man gifted with a lot of magical power, but also with hate and the ruthlessness to do anything to gain more power. He has also found some way to make himself impossible to kill, dark magic making it thus. I will have to do some research to find out more. Dumbledore will likely know more than he lets on, and Harry may very well be a wealth of information as well. If I hadn't regained one strange memory, I would have thought that we saw Voldemort's spirit emerging from Harry, yet I know that Harry faced him earlier this year. Voldemort is back in corporal form."
"What we do is that we find a way to kill him?"
"Yes, we find a way to kill him, permanently. I do not believe that it will be dangerous for you or me, or even too difficult. Only lengthy as it will take time to research what means he used to buy immortality for himself."
"What you are saying is that I will be of little use."
Loki suppressed a sigh. "Is glorious battle all you care about?"
"It sounds that way. Our son is being targeted by a mad man who has put terror in the magical mortals for nearly one of their lifetimes, a dark wizard who has come back from the dead and you are concerned with this not being a situation where your brawn is needed?"
"No! Loki, why must you think the worst of me?"
"Do not pretend like you were disappointed when we first arrived and I said that the people approaching weren't enemies? You thrive when fighting; you are always looking for glorious battle!"
"As you say!" Thor gesticulated widely, irritably. "I am good at fighting, and I enjoy it, I will not deny it. There is no need for me to deny it! I can however have more than one reason for wanting something. I fight to protect our people, not simply to find honour and glory and I am upset that I will not be able to help protect our son! I will have to stand by the sidelines watching you do everything to take down this enemy. I am not comfortable with inaction."
"I'm sure we'll find something for you to do," Loki said patronizingly, not impressed by the short speech, speeding up and leaving Thor to follow in his wake, glaring at his back.
- Conceiving the Impossible-
They arrived at the Hospital Wing, not haven spoken any more on the way there, Thor still seething silently because Loki wouldn't listen to him and Loki not caring about that one bit. They walked inside and Loki placed Harry down on an empty bed. Before he needed to call for assistance the nurse came bustling out of her office. He recognized Poppy Pomfrey from his own school days, but he didn't let it be known. It was already too much that he had told five faculty members about being Lily Potter.
"Oh, dear! What has happened?" she asked, seeing Harry unconscious on the bed.
"Accidental magic," Loki choose as an explanation. When you lie it is always best to incorporate the truth. "Very strong accidental magic."
"I see," she waved her wand over Harry. "Some space please!"
Loki backed away and with this hand on Thor's shoulder made him do the same. He watched her cast an array of diagnostic spells, waiting patiently, though Thor wasn't showing the same calmness. He was twitching under Loki's hand, which was kept in place to restrain him.
"What happened to him?" Madam Pomfrey asked. "There are traces of Dark Magic in his system, and nerve damage. This wasn't simply a case of accidental magic. And who are you?" Her wand was held easily at her side, not threatening, yet ready to be used if needed. Loki understood that she hadn't bothered with them until she had seen to her patient, but now that she had her attention was on them.
"I am Loki, and this is my brother Thor. We are here on the invitation of the Headmaster."
"Is that so?" Her eyes were narrowed.
"He hasn't mentioned visitors at the school."
"We arrived recently."
"And why is it you who brought Mr. Potter to me? In this condition?"
He walked closer to the Medi-Witch, and leaned in, giving her an impression of furtiveness and secrecy that she had been chosen to be a part of. It also put her attention strictly on him so that Thor's lack of ability to keep his face from showing what he was thinking wouldn't mess up his plan. "You know that You-Know-Who is back?" he asked her in a low tone. "You know that Mr. Potter saw him reborn?"
She stared at him and nodded minutely. "The Headmaster has told us what happened and I believe him."
Loki nodded. "That's right. We, Thor and I, are here to help Mr. Potter learn how to defend himself. He may be young know, and protected for now, but there will come a day when he will have to fight. You-Know-Who won't have it any other way. Our introduction with Mr. Potter became a bit more violent than I would have wished for as we told him a few truths. You might also be aware of the connection between Mr. Potter and You-Know-Who?"
"His accidental magic stirred up that connection. That is likely the cause of the nerve damage and the dark magic."
Madam Pomfrey did not look pleased, but neither did she look hostile. "I understand. I will take your word for it for now, but I will be asking the Headmaster for confirmation."
"Of course," he put a bit of distance between them again. "I would expect nothing less, madam. Will Mr. Potter be alright?"
"He will be fine. He only needs rest. I will administer a potion to help with the nerve damage and then all that can be done is to wait for him to wake up. The Dark Magic should dissipate on its own in time, and hopefully there will be no ill effects. I'll keep an eye on him and do what I can."
"Good, the Headmaster will be pleased to hear it. We should go tell him what has happened."
She nodded. "If you don't want to draw attention from the students it might be advisable to change into more neutral clothing," she advised, before turning her back and going over to a cabinet which Loki remembered held potions when he had attended the school."
Loki grabbed on to Thor's arm once more. Harry was in good hands, and they had a conversation that could not be postponed waiting for them.
End Chapter 6
AN 2nd July 2014
Ah, Thor and Loki banter is always fun, though it's difficult to make it as good as on screen. Hemsworth and Hiddleston have such amazing chemistry that written words can't compare whit (I kind of look forward more to Thor 3 than Avengers 2 because of that), but it's enjoyable to try. And we also got a bit more fleshed out reaction from Harry. He's not accepting this at false value, and it will take some time for him to be okay with everything. I'll try not show too much of his angst and indecisiveness though, only enough to make it interesting.
The confrontation with Dumbledore will happen next chapter. I look forward to that =)
Halfway through working on this chapter, I started feeling like something was off about the chapter. Can't pin point it though and I know that I'll only end up not working on it if I try to rewrite it. Hopefully I'll feel better about the next chapter.
As always I hope you enjoyed the chapter. Start your review with an "r" if you wish me to respond. Till next time!
(*) I wanted Loki to sing a lullaby – it's so precious to imagine him doing that, completely out of character, but not as much if you think of him as Lily. I though about what song to pick though and I looked up a few lullabies, not recognizing any more of them than the obvious ones like Brahms, but that was boring. I switched my search to Swedish, since I would be more familiar with the results there. This song is a Swedish lullaby written by Zacharias Topelius in the nineteenth century, Wikipedia had a translated version, which does kind of work to sing with the same melody, so that's what I ended up choosing, though I made a few changes in the lyrics to make it fit better in my opinion. My mother sang this song to me when I was a child, btw, so there's that. The original name of the song is Videvisan if you want to listen to it, though you'll only find it in Swedish.