The golden rays of sunlight shined warmth on his skin. It was quite enjoyable, all things considered. Not to mention this morning was quite special. A steaming cup of coffee was in Harry's hand and he enjoyed the bitter taste this particular delicacy provided for his system. It took quite a bit of tweaking with his magic to prepare the coffee powder. But, the abundant magic offered by Skane made it easy to shape his spells to his whims. Here, supported by the strongest magical ley lines he has come across in this world, his will alone was needed to shape the spells. He need not even exhaust his bodily magical energy for spells as the natural magic of the island would jump at the chance to be used.
Sipping the hot beverage from the cup Harry sat upon a boulder watching the morning sun blanket the island with warmth. Fenris was sitting beside him wagging his tail happily while munching on some fish. Harry scratched the wolf behind his ears earning an approving purr. He was not exactly a coffee person but it'd have to do. Try as he might he could not find tea leaves anywhere on the island which was a real shame. Tea would have been quite the find but he'd settle for coffee. Perhaps, there was tea somewhere in Westeros. If not, he could venture out into Essos seeking his old delicacy. He suspected searching the ancient cities along the shores of the Jade Sea should yield some results.
But, that was something to look forward to in the future. Some modifications to the airship should enable a journey around the world feasible. The lack of magical wood was one serious concern. Though, that bit of hurdle was no longer in play as Skane houses a lot of magical wood. A ship made of better wood with magical resonance should make it easy for binding more useful charms. He was sure the magical crystals could also serve a crucial role in a modified airship. Some ideas were simmering in the back of his mind but first, there was a far more important matter he needed to attend to.
A pained scream brought Harry out of his musings to the present. Looking at the source of the sound he was not surprised to see one of the men holding a bleeding hand thanks to a Unicorn.
"I told you, they don't like grown men. They barely even tolerate boys. Just have the women guide the Unicorns into the ship." said Harry, rolling his eyes in exasperation.
"When you said the Unicorns were hostile against men I didn't want to believe you. Should have known to take you seriously." said Benjen,
"They look innocent enough. But, they have a mean attitude towards men." said Harry, looking at the last Unicorn being guided into the airship by Anya.
"It's a good thing Rayder had the presence of mind to seek us out. Else we'd be looking forward to a long journey back through the forest." said Benjen.
Harry let out an appreciative hum but otherwise remained silent choosing to enjoy the coffee in his hand.
"I should have asked this the moment I found you. What happened to the demon? How did you get here?" Benjen asked.
"The demon is dead. It helped me find the Unicorns. In return, it wanted to be released from the curse."
"Curse?" Benjen frowned.
"The curse that made it a demon." Harry explained. "You should warn the men not to drink a Unicorn's blood or eat their flesh. The consequences will be most severe. Just don't harm a hair on their body and you'll be fine."
"Right. I'll keep that in mind. Since we've got what we came for let's go before more of those flying demons find us. I've had enough of those things to give me nightmares in my lifetime."
"I'm afraid we'll not be leaving immediately. There are some things I have to do."
Benjen immediately put his foot down on Harry's suggestion.
"We'll not be spending another minute on this island. We've been gone from your home for too long. Your father and mother must be worried."
Harry just shook his head before climbing to his feet.
"Look around you, uncle. This place has remained untouched by man. Because of that, it is teeming with life… magical life. The demons are gone from the island. What do you think will happen once it is known we safely trekked the island and survived to tell the tale?"
"I suppose some people may attempt to settle on the island. What's wrong with that?" Benjen admitted.
"You might think that's not a problem but I do." said Harry, a thin smile on his face but one that never reached his eyes.
Looking around Harry could see a remnant of the old world order before man unleashed his destruction on nature. He didn't want this island to suffer the same fate as the rest of the world. This was the cradle where magic thrived waiting to surge once more and reclaim its place. Even if the magic of this world does not intend to, he'd make sure a resurgence of magic takes place.
Men fight for what they perceived as their 'rights' all the time. In the process, they decimate the beauty of this world. It was very simple really. Mankind's destructive nature puts him in conflict with nature which is overwhelmingly vital for the survival of other creatures. Everything that remains subtle and aesthetic remains the contribution of the magic. Without this subtle aspect, life becomes dull and dreary.
"This island is under my protection. No man shall disturb the nature of this island." Harry declared.
Fenris let out a growl which Harry took as approval.
"See, even Fenris agrees." said Harry, petting the black wolf.
"Fine." Benjen sighed. "How do you suppose you are going to protect the island? It's not as if we can station soldiers here."
Harry just smiled before taking another sip of the coffee.
"I have got a few tricks up my sleeve."
Later, Harry regretted those words. It turns out his few tricks were certainly not enough to protect the island. The issue he was facing was the creation of protective wards around the island. Never in the history of the wizarding kind has anyone created wards that can blanket an entire island. It's not that no one tried but the other complexity involved in the endeavour was just near impossible to solve. The only case of a ward that has successfully covered a whole island was detection wards as they are the simplest to construct. Ravenclaw's magical registry of Hogwarts students was the product of sophisticated charms and a wide-encompassing ward covering Britain. The same was true for the underage magic detection ward even though the accuracy of the aforementioned ward was nothing to be impressed about.
The reason detection wards were easy to erect encompassing a large area was because their functioning was quite simple and therefore less complicated. When covering a large area the intent behind the ward gets muddled with the idiosyncrasies of the castor and those who are getting scanned under the ward. Oftentimes, the complexity of the wards lies in the details.
In this case, the question was how should the ward protect the island? Who should it act against? To what degree the action against intruders must be taken? As complex as the detail gets the harder it is to create a ward stretching across miles of land with complex creatures living under its protection. Because, magic was semi-sentient and it may choose to interpret certain actions under its purview differently especially when it was sitting in judgment over a large collection of diverse sentient creatures. This was why most wards are tied in with charms and monitored.
For obvious reasons, constant observation of the wards around the island was not possible. He might be a powerful wizard but even he cannot be in multiple places at one time. Even if he could somehow check in on the island periodically, he'd still have to keep tabs on the wards all the time which can be a tedious process.
So, the protection of the island ought to be more diversified instead of relying on protective wards. That's why Harry came up with the idea of creating pockets of protective wards. He travelled around the island in the airship and marked out the areas that could be feasible for ships or boats to land. In those areas, he could use wards making it impossible for ships or boats to land. The wards were further augmented by a muggle-repelling charm built into the wardstones he painstakingly carved.
Now, he didn't stop there. This was just the first line of defence. He built another series of defences along the shores of the island tied to these wards. If these wards somehow fail to repel the intruders he wanted another line of defence. That's where the golems come in.
An advantage of using animation charms was that it was incredibly effective against conventional muggle weaponry. The eastern theatre of war in his world quickly changed into a full-blown nuclear disaster because the muggles were losing to wizards in the land war as well as the scarcity of resources. All their fancy machinery, weapons and large armies could not compete with the sheer number of golem troops wizards could field. If those golems were further empowered by self-charging runes and regenerative runes then all the better. Wizards could field an army that did not know hunger, fear, self-preservation and most importantly they do not get tired. As advanced as muggles were in warfare, they could not match the ingenuity of magical constructs in land warfare.
Seeing as Westeros was nowhere near the technological milestones of the muggles of his world, Harry was pretty sure stacking up golems along the shores of Skane island should be enough deterrence. Although, he also decided to add some extra layer of capabilities and projectile weapons to the golems. The ice dragon's story about Balor and some of his plans made it all but certain that there was a war coming. Containing Balor and his army of undead soldiers was a priority for Harry. However, even the ice dragon didn't hold all the pieces of the puzzle. If he truly wanted to know more he'd have to use the Resurrection Stone and summon his ancestor.
But, that could wait. He was not magically prepared to use the Stone and disturb the natural order. Some of the things the ice dragon spoke to him about the collective entity dubbed as the Old Gods made him weary of stepping into the realm of the supposedly divine. Not just the Old Gods. There was a whole bunch of them in the far east. These 'gods' have thrived by dominating the mindscape of mortal men and women like parasites.
Harry strongly suspected these 'gods' came from his world just like Balor. The ice dragon was not exactly forthcoming with the true nature of the gods of the east. Maybe the dragon was not as knowledgeable in the subject.
'Time will reveal everything.' Harry thought.
It has been quite a while since his feet touched the Dornish sands. When his brother sent Nymeria with a message he had thought his 'exile' was coming to an end. Officially, Oberyn was in forced exile from Dorne over some series of issues. He did manage to cause a lot of trouble by killing Lord Yornwood in a stupid duel over a stupid woman. At least, she was a good lay in bed. That's the only consolation.
It was his nephew, Quentyn who paid the price for his ill-timed actions. Doran pacified House Yornwood by offering his eldest son to foster at Boneway. Consequently, this led to some problems in Doran's marriage causing his elder brother's wife to leave Dorne. Doran's actions may have averted a civil war in Dorne but it was certainly at the cost of his elder brother's relationship with his wife.
But, his brother was nothing but pragmatic. Instead of wallowing in misery or blaming him, Doran chose to capitalize on the situation and 'exiled' him for an unspecified period of time from Dorne. While in this 'exile' he was supposed to reorient Dorne's relationships with the Free Cities of Essos. The Targaryen Conquest of Dorne and the later peaceful assimilation into the Seven Kingdoms under Daeron the Good were certainly not to the benefit of Dorne in the long term. House Martell lost quite a lot of friends since then and they lost quite a lot when those Ninepenny kings mowed down some of their traditional allies in Essos.
With the Iron Throne now hostile and the burning embers of vengeance simmering in their minds for the fate of their dear sister, the need for strengthening their ties to the Free Cities was a necessity. It was with this intent, Oberyn travelled the Free Cities. He was there on the ground, aiding and brokering deals with Magisters for the benefit of Dorne. When he wasn't doing that he was off in the field fighting side by side with Sellswords in the most renowned Sellsword companies of Essos. It kept his lust for blood sated and at the same time, he made new friends.
So, imagine his surprise when one day he was sought out by his daughter who carried a message from the Prince of Dorne. The contents of the message, however, were shocking, to say the least. The order from his brother on the other hand was quite devious which made Oberyn not waste a single moment and made arrangements for a long voyage to Braavos. After all, it'd be unlike him to throw away a chance to bleed the Lannisters even if it was at a measly auction.
"My love. What bothers you so my love that you'd spend this late hour deep in thought?"
Oberyn smiled as he turned around to look at his paramour, Ellaria Sand. Taking to his feet, Oberyn joined his lover in bed. Ellaria was merely covered with a single thin layer of cotton that left nothing much to his imagination. Her bare back was presented to him in the most alluring way possible under the candlelight. He pressed a chaste kiss on her olive skin earning an approving purr from his beloved.
"Just thinking of ways to skin a lion." he murmured against her skin gliding the back of his fingers over the fine contours of her body.
"You'll have your vengeance, my love. We are just a day away from the city. Come join me in bed. Keep me warm." said Ellaria, her almond eyes shining with playfulness and lust.
"The sands have spoken and the Prince of Dorne has no choice but to comply." Oberyn playfully nipped at his lover's shoulder while he slipped under the covers.
When he felt the warm skin of his lover against his body he was ready to forget about the Lannisters. As Ellaria said, he only need to wait a day more for their ship to make land. He will make sure Tywin Lannister pay a steep price. In time, he'll make sure the lions bleed not just gold but red that can paint the whole of Westeros red.