Chapter 6: The Opposing Forces

"...he walked right under us and I just had to re-experience my Marauder days." Explained Sirus attempting to justify why the ministry Aurors found a Death Eater covered in all the colors of the rainbow and singing, "I am a little teapot..." a few days ago.

The room bursted into laughter once again, though the degree of amused outburst varied from person to person. Remus didn't even try to hide his amusement this time. Professor McGonagall had great trouble keeping her reaction toned down to a grin. Albus simply leaned forward in his chair. Though not adding his own two cents to the discussion, his eyes twinkled merrily nonetheless.

"Albus, where's Arthur? And Severus? I thought he was supposed to report in on Voldemort's activities." Questioned Alastor Moody once the laughter died down.

"Ah, Arthur is out on Ministry duties and I believe Severus has an emergency Death Eater meeting again today, so he will be giving me the report tomorrow morning. I'll forward it to all of you when I get it." Answered the headmaster.

"Lemon drops anyone?" Albus asked, raising a plateful of the said candy. The other Order members politely refused at which point the aged wizard popped one into his mouth.

"I think it is good thing he's not here, always a downer on everyone's spirits. In fact, I think the git should be excluded from all subsequent meetings." Commented Sirius pointedly. The other members rolled their eyes backwards.

"Sirius, Severus has taken incredible risk spying on Voldemort..." The aged wizard ignored the slight winces some of the Order members showed when he said "Voldemort" preferring to concentrate on those who had remained resolute and undisturbed. "...for us and is a valuable member of the Order as important and crucial as you and I. I pray that you remember that." Stated the headmaster in the git's defense. Each word was said softly but sternly so that there's no room for future questioning of meaning. Sirius was dignified enough to be shamed and suddenly became very quiet. Remus, who sat beside him, debated between protesting against Albus's harsh remark and laughing at Sirius's predicament, which closely resembled that of a little boy being chastised by his mother for playing in the mud.

"Though I suppose it's understandable. Severus has been rather harsh even for him on the Gryffindors, specifically your godson these recent months." Added Albus with a sigh. Sirius blinked in confusion before fixing the headmaster with a sharp stare.

"He's been what?" There was a slight growl in Black's voice, which was expected given his godson's involvement.

"Harry never told you?" Asked Arabella Figg. Apparently, the estranged old lady, who was the neighbor of the Dursleys, was in fact a witch sent by Dumbledore to look after Harry. The revelation would no doubt be a major shocker for the young man, especially since Harry was never particularly found of the cat woman.

"What, that Snape's being a jerk! No of course that! Harry's not the kind of person to tattle tale." Replied Sirius, shooting back the sarcastic and bitter reply. Arabella winced slightly as did quite a few other people.

"Sorry, but I have been on the edge lately with everything that has been happening." Apologized Sirius sincerely with lowered head. The other members couldn't help but feel sorry for the man. As Sirius has shown, trying to reconnect with a family member is tough especially in times of war. The fact that one member is a hunted fugitive of the good guys while the other is a bounty of the bad guys makes it all the more difficult.

"It's alright Padfoot. You will be fine once we get you cleared. Besides Harry's a tough kid. He'll make it." Stated Remus reassuringly, comforting his friend. The other members of the Order of the Phoenix also added various encouraging words and condolences.

"I know he's strong, Moony. That's just the thing I am worried about. Harry's too strong sometimes. He prefers to take up all the burdens silently, to hold all his emotions and fears inside of him than to let it out and worry others. I just wish that he didn't have to go through all this. I mean we are adults. It's hard, but we can deal with it. Harry's just a child and he's the number one target of madman." Sirius's voice quavered towards the end. The mid aged, dark haired man suddenly looked like he had just gone to Azkaban for another 12 years. Suddenly the man lifted his head and turned to look straight at Albus with those sad, tired eyes of his. Anyone else would have melted and would have given in just to escape from those eyes, but not Albus Dumbledore.

The headmaster stared right back at Sirius with unmoving and stern yet comforting and understanding eyes.

"Yes, Harry's a child, but he's not just any ordinary child. None of us want him to do this but Sirius, you must understand that this is something Harry can't escape from." Explained Albus. The door to the headmaster's chambers suddenly opened and in walked Hermione Granger and Ronald Weasley.

"Ah, yes, come in Ms. Granger, Mr. Weasley." Albus motioned the two confused Gryffindor students to sit.

"What's going on, headmaster, we heard you say Harry's name. Did something happen? Did..." Asked Hermione with rising concern.

"No, Harry's fine...for now." Interrupted the headmaster to keep the two from getting the wrong impression.

"For now?"

"What do you mean by that, sir?" Asked Ron with furrowed eyebrows.

"We believe that Voldemort will be making a big move soon." Said Albus seriously. "That is to say that he will try to topple the Ministry and take over Magical Britain."

The two 5th year students choked on these words.

"To demoralize the resistance, we believe that he will try to eliminate Harry in the opening days. It is likely that he will try to lure Harry out of Hogwarts and kill him." Continued the headmaster without waiting for a response. Ron and Hermione suddenly became very pale and shaken by fright. They had always been aware of the danger, heck when was Harry's life not in danger, but to hear Headmaster Dumbledore say it... that is a completely different thing.

"Harry doesn't know enough to defeat Voldemort so an actual duel would most likely result in his death. I know that the three of you had quite a bit of adventure in the past, but this time I must ask you not to do it this year." By now, the headmaster was leaning heavily on his desk towards the two students. The two Gryffindors could only nod in acknowledgement.

"What can we do to help?" Asked Hermione finally. Albus sighed.

"Keep us informed of Harry's conditions. Observe him closely, don't let him out of your sight. It is imperative that Harry is not left alone or is allowed contact with unknown people or objects." Stated Albus. Memory of the trophy – portkey incident at the Triwizard Tournament last year was still fresh in everyone's mind.

"Ron, Hermione, if anything unusual happens, please report immediately to one of the professors even if it's Snape. If Harry is anything like James then he will try to take on the problem himself and maybe even confront Voldemort by himself. Please don't let him." Pleaded a shaken voice from the side. Ron and Hermione turned to see a fragile looking Sirius Black. The two had been so caught up in the headmaster's words that neither noticed the other people in the room.

"Don't worry, Sirius, we'll make sure that Harry's alright." Answered Hermione reassuringly at which Padfoot muttered a quiet thank you.

"Now, I know that you two, being Harry's best friends, would do this without us asking this, but I called you up here for another reason as well. I would like to extend invitations to both of you to join the Order of the Phoenix." Stated Albus, smiling a bit at this.

"Right now!?" Questioned Ron with more than a little surprised. True, the order did take quite a few young graduates of Hogwarts recently, but he didn't know you could join it while you were still at school.

"Yes, starting this year, we will be accepting junior members into the Order. And before you ask, no, you wouldn't go on mission or patrol like normal members since you will still be in school. But, you will be getting access to some Order information and extra training in magical combat." Explained the headmaster and leader of the Order of the Phoenix.

"Cool." Commented Ron, who was more than a little excited at the prospect of becoming a junior Order member.

"Wait, but what about Harry? Is he a member already?" Asked Ron suddenly as his thoughts returned to his friend.

"No." Answered Albus simply. Both Ron and Hermione were stunned and exchanged confused looks.

"Harry's basically an Order member already. He's been asking all kinds of questions about what's going on with the war. If we make him an actual member, he'll become even more devoted to the war effort. At the present moment, we think that it's better if he's not in the Order, where as if you two are, you can better communicate with us." Explained Remus. Apparently, the justification was enough to satisfy Harry's two friends.

"So, how's my godson lately, he didn't write for a while and I was getting worried?" Asked Sirius.

"He's doing fine from what we could tell. I mean he's been eating fine..." Stated Hermione.

"...and he still likes to play Quidditch." Continued Ron.

"Oh, I am glad then." Sighed Sirius in relief, relaxing a bit in his chair.

"But, there's something different about him though." Added Hermione in after thought.

"Like what?" Sirius sat up immediately; concern immediately showing across his face once again.

"Nothing big, it's just that I feel like he's different somehow. Maybe it's just me." Hermione suddenly didn't sound so sure. The bushy haired girl looked at Ron, wondering if she was just paranoid or if Ron had also noticed.

"Actually, I think Hermione may be right. Harry had a run in with Draco and a bunch of Slytherins a day or two back." Stated Ron cautiously.

"Ergh, what did they do?" Growled Sirius.

"Nothing. Harry said something to them in the hallways. I don't know what since none of us were close enough to hear it, but whatever he said, the Slytherins suddenly looked frightened and very afraid. Even Snape, I mean Professor Snape, became pale." Explained Ron. The Order members exchanged concerned looks.

"It's probably because of all the pressures he's been under, sir. The work load has been much greater this year." Added Hermione quickly trying to justify the incident.

"Yes, you are probably correct, Ms. Granger. Anything else?" Asked Headmaster Dumbledore with hand up to his chin looking between his two students.

"No, nothing more, sir." Said Ron.

"Alright, you may go now. Thank you for sharing that." Thanked Albus. The two friends turned to leave, but Ron stopped and turned around at the door.

"Is Harry alright, sir?" Asked Ron, a bit unsurely.

"We hope so." Answered the headmaster with a sigh. "We hope so."

It was perhaps believable if it was said just once, but the fact that Albus repeated the phrase twice seemed to suggest that headmaster himself was unsure and was trying to convince himself that Harry was indeed alright as much as he was trying to convince Ron and Hermione.

"Don't worry, we'll take good care of Harry, Padfoot." Stated Hermione with just enough confidence to reassure Harry's godfather.

"Harry's lucky to have friends like you." Responded Sirius.

"Come on, let's go Ron." Stated Hermione, bringing Ron out of his thoughts. Then the two disappeared through the door.

"What could this mean?" Asked Alastor Moody once he was sure the two were out of hearing range.

"I am not sure exactly what's going on, but it would seem that something has happened or is happening." Stated Albus. His face carried the impression of being in deep deliberation, one that no one wanted to disturb.

"I am not sure if you know this, Padfoot, but Harry risked his life to save a young Ms. Weasley the other day during a friendly Seeker match I believe." Started Albus, looking at Sirius. The confused expression of the other man's face told the headmaster that this was news to him. The headmaster motioned Professor McGonagall to continue being that both of the students involved were from her house.

"From what I have learned, Mr. Potter apparently took a bludgerto the side that was meant for Ms. Weasley. Ms. Weasley managed to stay on her broom, but Harry fell off his. It was a most heroic deed which won Mr. Potter 30 house points." Stated the Gryffindor head of house with a touch of pride.

"I would say Harry won more than just some house points. What was Arthur's daughter's name again? Virginia, was it? See, Mooney, I told you Harry been seeing girls. Albus, I don't think it's that big of a thing. James was the same age as well when he started being particularly interested in Lily." Laughed Sirius, grinning at his friend. The other Order members all chucked.

"Yes, well, it wasn't the act itself that was surprising, Sirius. It's what

Poppy told me when she treated Harry." Explained Albus.

"What do you mean? He wasn't badly hurt was he?" Asked Remus.

"No, he wasn't hurt at all. That was the problem, actually." Answered Albus.

"I am afraid I don't follow Albus." Stated a confused Sirius T Black.

"Given the impact of the blow and height of fall, Poppy said that Harry should have been pretty beat up, a couple of broken ribs and bones at the very least. She found strands of blood on Harry's clothing, which have been identified to be Harry's but no open wounds whatsoever." Explained Albus.

"What, but that doesn't make any sense." Stated Sirius.

"What do you think this means, Albus?" Asked Remus, eager to hear the headmaster's interpretations.

"Well, it could be that Harry was miraculously healed by some foreign or untapped power within him." Offered Albus, but the hesitation in his voice told everyone that he wasn't convinced.

"You don't believe that Albus. Besides we didn't detect any magical changes in Harry." Protested Arabella. Years of close observation of Harry allowed the woman to detect the slightest magical change in the boy.

"It must have been a powerful and very fast healing spell. You know what it is, Albus" Stated Alastor confidently. The headmaster looked hesitant to respond.

"Albus, what do you know that we don't know?" Asked Remus. Seeing that they would refuse to back down until they know the truth, Albus gave in, sighing deeply, knowing they wouldn't like what he had to say.

"Poppy gave Harry a blood test and found some interesting results. She didn't know what to make of the result and I didn't tell her, but I am almost positive that Harry's blood test was consistent with the result of a small blood –letting ritual." The Order members alternated between making chocking noises and splattering.

"That's impossible, all of them are ancient spells and most of them are dark curses. Surely you can't imply that..." Protested the Gryffindor head of house.

"I am afraid I have no choice under the circumstances but to imply just that, Minerva." Replied Albus without the twinkle in his eyes.

"Albus, most of those curses haven't been performed in centuries. How did Harry...?" Asked a dumbfounded Remus. But where as he was able to use his voice, his friend, Padfoot was yelling in some inarticulate language.

"No, how can you say such things?! Harry would NEVER?! There must be some logical explanation. Harry can NOT be evil." Sirius was literally shaking with disbelief and rage at what was being said about his godson.

"Relax, Sirius, I am not implying at all that Harry's evil." Stated Albus trying to calm his friend down.

"Yes, you are, sir, you are implying just that." Glared back Sirius, having been calmed down a bit by Remus. Albus looked for once in his lifetime unsure of what to say.

"Look, Sirius, we don't really know for sure what's happened. Maybe you are right, I am wrong and this whole incident was just an unfortunate coincidence. But, we can hope for the best and I do hope that I am wrong. In time, I think we'll know, but until then I suggest that we should be particularly watchful of Mr. Potter." Suggested Albus.

Sirius and Remus both reluctantly agreed.

Could it be true. Could Harry be practicing the dark arts. Sirius refused to wrap his mind around such a thought. It was simply an impossibility...

...or so he thought.

Beautiful, simply beautiful... the figures inside the transparent spherical glass ball danced about merrily much to the amusement of the man holding it. The man had rich red hair and a million watt smile plastered on his face as he shook the snow globe again, captivated by the monstrous blizzard that descended on the inhabitants within the glass sphere.

"Splendid artifact, isn't it?" Came an amused voice a few feet away, causing the man to divert his attention. "The muggles call it a snow globe, I believe."

"Ah, yes, I believe that's right. I have heard of it, but never actually held one before. Oh, I am sorry Commander Lefton for being distracted." Apologized the red haired man, putting the snow globe back on the desk before the Auror commander.

"Quite alright, Mr. Weasley. At least now I know what Christmas gift I should get you." Replied Marcus humorously. Lord knows Arthur Weasley's fascination with muggle objects was legendary within the Ministry.

"Now, back to the issue at hand, I think I can arrange a division to be sent to Hogwarts. God knows, that place's the only safe haven in England and I intend to keep it that way for the children." Agreed the man dressed in Auror uniform. Arthur Weasley thanked the man heartily.

"Do extend my thanks to Professor Dumbledore and the rest of the Order. You people have been lifesavers for everyone. Contraire to what the Minister would have you to believe, we Aurors here are very supportive of what the Order of the Phoenix is doing." Said the man.

"I'll be sure to tell him, Mr. Lefton, I am sure he'll be pleased to hear this." Exclaimed Arthur.

"No problem, anytime Albus needs a hand, don't hesitate to call us for help and I don't care if I have to go over the heads of that bumbling fool in the seat of the Minister of Magic to do it." Exclaimed the Auror commander as he shook hands with the Order representative.

Once Arthur left, the Auror commander positioned himself comfortably in his lazy chair and proceeded to become engrossed in some document before him. Causally, Marcus moved his hand over the snow globe before him. The glass ball glowed for second as several layers of silence and deception shields sprung up around the office.

"Do you want me to inform the team, sir?" Came a voice from the darkness once Arthur had left. A figure stepped away from the darkness. Auror Commander Lefton didn't even bother to look up.

"Yes, I want at least a dozen of our best Unspeakable agents inside the school. I'll arrange to move my own Auror division there so they won't draw suspicion when they report to me." Ordered the Auror commander.

"Do you think it's necessary for us to spy on our allies, sir? I know the Ministry is compromised, but I doubt any Death Eater can penetrate Dumbledore's Order." Protested the other man.

"It's not the Order. It's the students in Hogwarts, who are or are about to be initiated as Death Eaters." Stated Marcus.

"Sir?" The man looked very perplexed. Apparently, this was news to him. Marcus smiled.

"An agent we have within Hogwarts just recently released a list of students who most likely have already or are about to join Voldemort." Stated Marcus. The man standing before him looked stunned.

"An Unspeakable... within Hogwarts?" Stammered the man.

"Yes. She's presently a student, but she has been an invaluable agent too. Apparently, many of the Dark Lord's servants have sent their children to Hogwarts and quite a few of them have become a bit too vocal about what their parents do." Commander Lefton's eyes gleaned with amusement.

"Impressive, very impressive." Laughed the other man.

"Indeed, it is rare that we are blessed with such a young talent." Agreed Marcus. "In any case, the Unspeakable agents will deal with these neo Death Eaters. With any luck, we can eliminate a new generation of these monsters before they even start. The team at Hogwarts will be informed of the presence of an agent in the student body, but her identity will not be revealed for security reasons except in cases of extreme emergency."

"Understood, sir." Acknowledged the man. "Anything else sir?"

Marcus thought for a second.

"Actually there is. Something strange has also happened, something big, I think." Commander Lefton said, frowning a bit. It was something elusive, something he couldn't quite place his hands on.

"Recently we found the bodies - well more like the scant remains - of about a dozen dark wizards, Voldemort supporters, in a forest in northern Romania. The department had been tracking this group of dark followers for about a year. Here take a look at this." Marcus handed the man a folder with the word "Classified" clearly marked across it in big black bolded letters.

"We believe they were one of the most powerful groups of dark wizards in continental Europe, terrorizing international communities. They have successfully evaded ministry Aurors, hit wizards, and assassinated all spies sent to expose them. They were the best of the worst so to speak. Days ago, they suddenly disappeared. Imagine our surprise when our forensics units found the remains of the group in a forest."

"How sir?" Asked the man in disbelief, looking through the documents.

"We believe that they were ambushed and killed. The ambushers used some very advance concealing charms and spells, some of which we still couldn't figure out. We would never have even found their remains had not we already been tracking those guys. What I am saying is that whoever attacked our suspects were powerful, VERY powerful. As of yet, we have no clue who or what these people are." Stated Commander Marcus Lefton.

"They could be potential allies like the Order of the Phoenix." Suggested the subordinate hopefully.

"Or they could be a rival group of dark wizards." Retorted Marcus. "Traces of very dark curses and charms, some of foreign and even ancient origin, were detected."

Silence, both knew what this meant. A rival group of dark wizards was on the loose and no one knows about it. The implications could get very serious.

"I want you to head the investigation on this. Report anything you find back to me, but not to anyone else, do I make myself clear?" Commander Lefton's eyes narrowed as he firmly commanded his subordinate.

"Crystal, sir." The Unspeakable agent then disappeared back into the shadows he came from. Marcus moved his hand over the snow globe again and the shields came down.

The Auror commander stared at the snow globe.

Hum... I can see why he was so interested. This is an amazing object. Thought Auror Commander and Deputy Head of Department of Mysteries, Marcus Lefton, as he picked up the snow globe and watched the snow fall.

The thick stench of death attacked the senses of all who entered the room. It is only through the repetition of gathering under similar conditions week after week, month after month that prevented the occupants of the room from throwing up.

"One simple artifact, one simple magical artifact that your lord has requested and none of you incompetent idiots can get it!" Voldemort howled with rage over the dead bodies. He needed the scepter. Oh yes, with the legendary Dragon Scepter, victory would be all but certain...

"Get rid of the bodies." Sneered a cold drawl voice that demanded compliance.

"Yes, my lord." Several people at the back of the room quickly removed the mutilated remains of what were once three live human beings. Only the sporadic puddles of blood indicated the unfortunate fate of the three wretched fools.

"Let that be a lesson to all of you that Lord Voldemort does not tolerate failures." Apparently, the bag of bones and skin think that speaking in the third person makes him sound intimidating...

"Of course, my lord." Affirmed the throng of Death Eaters.

"Now, it appears also that someone has been killing off my supporters on the continent. I want to know WHO! ...Lucius!" Hissed Voldemort venomously, shrieking and flaring about violently.

"My lord... nobody knows what happened. The Ministry doesn't even know of the identities of the Death Eaters..." Answered Death Eater in the lead. Before the elder Malfoy was even finished with his report, he was on the ground, wrecked by spasms of pain and agony caused by the Cruciatus curse.

"Didn't I just say that I would not tolerate any failures? This include excuses as well, Lucius." Voldemort released the man from the pain curse after a few more seconds.

"Do any of you have a shred of good news for your lord?" Boomed Lord Voldemort. His loyal cohorts before him shrunk away in fear of retribution.

"Wormtail! What of the other creatures? Have they joined me yet?" Asked Voldemort with bottled anger. The Dark Lord was not the mood for any more bad news.

"Myy... my lord, the giants and werewolves we have contacted have either pledged their support or have decided to stay neutral for the time being." Voldemort was apparently content enough with the information to not curse Wormtail outright.

"And the vampires?" Voldemort's wand hovered dangerously before Wormtail. The rat quivered in fear of the expected punishment. Truth was, he wasn't able to get in touch with any vampires for some reason.

Silence at first...

"Please my lord, I couldn't find any vampires. They must have..." The rat's pleads were answered by one word.


"Do you know why you couldn't locate any vampires, my dear Wormtail?" Asked Voldemort with a devious smile after lifting the curse. Splattering helplessly, the bald Death Eater shook his head.

"Because I have already gained the support of the vampires." Stated the Dark Lord with supreme confidence. There was quite a bit of commotion within the Death Eater ranks at this revelation.

"Oh yes, in fact, I would like you to meet a few of them." Voldemort raised his left hand, and a dozen vampires appeared behind him. These vampires first bowed reverently before Voldemort and then stood to either sides of the Dark Lord with their fangs visibly showing. Ignoring the stunned faces of his human followers, Voldemort drew to his full height.

"Loyal followers of darkness. The time draws near when we shall crush all those who have opposed us. We will topple the Ministry, rule Magical Britain and oust all Mudblood and Muggle lovers from our new world society. Harry Potter will not be able to hide behind Dumbledore this time for I shall kill them both." Voldemort's eyes gleaned madly. A smirk or rather more like a demonic smile twisted across his face giving the impression and image of a supremely confident dark lord.

"Our hour of greatness is approaching! Victory will be OURS!" Shouted... no announced...proclaimed the Dark Lord. Indeed, with the support of the undead and usage of the element of surprise, the Dark Lord would surely win the coming battles, which would guarantee the allegiance of those dark followers who still waver with regard to whether or not to join him. The Death Eaters meanwhile were electrified, cheering loudly and ecstatically at the end of their leader's oration, all except for one that is...

I have to tell Dumbledore about this... Thought Severus as he gazed at the sea of Death Eater fanatics around him.

It was the very imagery of one of those haunted/dark castles that muggles were so used to seeing on TV and movies. A black run down castle on a lofty cliff side; a perfect hideout for some evil maniac bent on taking over the world. Inside, light only allowed a visibility range of no more than 5 to 10 feet. Additionally, the castle was situated deep within the Carpathian Mountain Ranges, further linking it to the vampire legend of Dracula and all those stuff.

The castle was in fact Serpentine Order headquarters, so to the average ignorant human being, that would be synopsis to being a hideout for evil dudes. Slytherin Castle as it was called, was unplotable like Hogwarts, but had enough wards to make Hogwarts look like it has nothing more than an air bubble surrounding it for defense. Therefore, it existed to the public nothing more than myth and legend; myth and legend that have been fanned by popular superstitions and runaway human imagination into very amusing fictitious works, most notably about the vampire Dracula, who supposed lived in Transylvania. Whether it was just coincidence or something else, no one knows. Though Lady von Hollenstein had been most amused when she saw a film version of Dracula at a muggle movie theater during one of her excursions into the outside world.

Arch Mage Tal Rasha had often marveled at how ignorant the world has become as time drew on. The average Joe was much more intelligent and knowledgeable when he was back in time being trained by the Obsidian Order. After all, people now days did believe that an artifact featuring two intersecting and perpendicular lines repelled vampires. Amazing, almost as amazing as how some mediocre human who called himself Voldemort managed to instigate what's to be a global, multi-species war.

Tal Rasha strutted through the corridors, allowing the edges of his cloak to bellow out behind him as he did. Others walking in the hallways gladly shifted to the side to grant the Arch Mage unhindered middle passage.

"ID verification: Tal Rasha, Obsidian Mage, Arch Mage, High Council member... access granted..." A pair of double doors swung opened. All eyes turned on Tal Rasha as he entered and the doors closing behind him.

"What happened?" Asked an agitated Tal Rasha. The witch in blue robes, Celia merely pointed to a prone figure lying unconscious on the floor. It was a vampire.

"Claims to be a member of the Vampire's Council that's being called into session." Sneered one of the resident vampire mages in Slytherin Castle. The statement was said with as much sarcasm as the vampire was able to muster. Rasha surveyed the body. From what he knows, the suspect was a young vampire, having been turned perhaps no more than a few weeks ago. Tal Rasha looked around him and saw several of the elder vampires present, glaring at the body before him. How in all of hell did this nobody dare claim residency in the most elite circle of vampires?

"Wake him." Ordered Tal Rasha. One of the vampires unceremoniously tossed a fire spell at the body, causing the vampire to yelp in shock. The fire caused no serious damage and quickly burned itself up. The vampire then shot upward, looking around at the faces, half dazed and half surprised. When the vampire was finally more or less oriented several minutes later, the two hundred year old arch mage motioned one of the vampire mages to interrogate the suspect.

"Who are you?" The vampire mage asked.

"Duke of Seine, War Magnate of the vampire council!" Seeing a fellow vampire, the suspect quickly straightened himself, drawing himself to his full height in an attempt to try to look intimidating. If possible, all the vampires present would have rolled their eyes to the back of their heads.

"Luminaire!" A bright flash of light engulfed the vampire causing him to scream out in agony. While veteran and old vampires would have been able to train themselves to become immune to the effects of light, an inexperienced vampire like this most certainly wouldn't have. The light quickly vanished leaving a badly bruised but alive vampire.

"Dear fledging, we here are members of the last council that was ever summoned and I can swear that I do not know you." Stated the vampire mage. The young vampire looked at the vampire before him and then the others around him with a more focused vision and saw several of the older vampires that Voldemort had been trying to contact.

"…you are...the vampire council." Stammered the vampire.

"Yes, and we are all very interested in how a fledgling like you can be part of this council and who gave you all the titles." There was a dangerous edge in the vampire mage's voice, which was missed by the captured fledgling.

"His greatness, Lord Voldemort did so and he has asked the vampires to join him. We couldn't find the original council so he created one but now that I have found..." The vampire talked onwards, oblivious to the hostile atmosphere.

"Fledging, you dare pose as the council and make decisions for the entire vampire realm! I should have you staked for treason against the Superior Vampire Council!" The vampire mage fired back. The fledgling gapped with wide opened mouth.

"Lord Voldemort has offered us a once in an eternity's opportunity. Surely you will not..." Protested the vampire, but was quickly cut off by his elder.

"Do not presume to judge what you don't know, fledging, you have no idea what you have done." Stated the vampire mage with blazing energy. The young fledgling suddenly remembered the circumstances concerning how he was forcibly subdued hours ago and realized that he was in hostile territory. If these vampires would not join him, then they must die. Surely Voldemort gave him enough power to take these guys on. Tossing reason and caution to the wind, he leaped with inhuman speed to attack, only to be violently thrown back down. The young vampire then howled in indescribable pain as the vampire mage harshly attacked his mind. Too young to grasp what's happening, the Voldemort supporter could only curl on the ground as the elder vampire drained his mind of his memories.

"Is he dead?" Asked Tal Rasha coldly from the side afterwards.

"Not yet, but close enough." The vampire shook his head in disgust.

"Finish him, then." Ordered Tal Rasha. Several of the other vampire mages combined their energy, firing several luminaire charms, which completely obliterated the body of the mindless vampire, leaving a pile of dusty robes behind.

"I have managed to retrieve data regarding the members and plans of Voldemort's puppet vampire council... I must contact the rest of the Superior Vampire Council." Stated the vampire, turning to Tal Rasha. The arch mage nodded.

"Please do. I'll inform the First Vampire and Lord Slytherin of this... unfortunate series of events." Stated Tal Rasha, glancing at the remains. With that said, the vampires then quickly departed.

If the vampires even just the younger ones join Voldemort, it could seriously complicate the current situation. Thought Tal Rasha. This was not good, the arch mage reasoned and he was right.

So, right now, inside Hogwarts, in just the student body, you got a very powerful Harry, the First Vampire, Death Eater recruits, an Unspeakable agent and Order agents. And the best part is they will all know each other in school. So far, I am creating ideas for some interesting conversations, but I am open to suggestions if anyone else has a particular idea for an encounter between the characters.

AN: Anyone interested in being on my mailing list, please e-mail me or leave a note on the message board. I also decided to cut the war mages/Elvin part. I didn't really know what to do with them. Sorry! If and when I write another story, I'll include them.