be the better person here
let's put the past behind us now
and think about tomorrow
there's so much out for all of us to experience
we'll work together and coexist
who said friendship doesn't work
there is so much out there to do with ourselves
than be at each other's neck
With each other's hands
We destroy ourselves
September 14th 7PM Wednesday
"What were you thinking?!" Severus yelled for what seemed to be the thousandth time since Khalida brought him to Safe Haven.
Draco came with him but he had remained strangely silent ever since their arrival. While Severus paced back and forth across the room, Draco was leaning against the far wall, arms crossed over his chest with his head down. I tried to get his attention but his eyes remained hidden behind a curtain of blonde hair.
"That's right; you are incapable of thinking before you act!" Severus continued his tirade without giving me or anyone else a chance to respond. "I thought that there could be no bigger troublemaker then James Potter but then your father came along and he was even worse."
"And now YOU come along and I find myself proven wrong once again! Do you have any idea what you have done! The Ministry is not only after you but they are questioning Dumbledore about America's allegations that you have been kidnapped!" Severus suddenly turned and stalked over to the couch. He leaned over me until we were nearly nose to nose.
"Potter was thrown into a war that had begun before he was even born," he sneered, his eyes never leaving my own, "but you seem to be intent on starting your very own bloody war."
"Severus, I…" Khalida began to interrupt but Severus silenced her with the coldest glare I'd ever seen in my life.
"Shut up, both of you," he hissed under his breath, "I do not want to hear anything you have to say unless you know of some way to go back in time so this has never happened."
"How about a time-turner?" I offered with a small grin which faded quickly. It was definitely not the time to be making jokes.
Severus turned back to face me. His pale face turned a horrible shade of purple as anger built up within him. His words came out as grunts and angry syllables.
"Sit down Severus before you give yourself a heart attack," Khalida commanded sharply and pushed Severus to sit beside me on the couch. I took one look at him and slowly inched my way to the far end of the couch until my hip was digging into the armrest.
"This isn't helping," Khalida reprimanded, "And you know it. Now stop yelling and help us come up with a plan."
"Do you have any idea of what you are going to do?" Severus asked as Khalida and I shared a pointed look.
"Well," I began slowly, "the castle did give me a little advice before I left."
"And what was it?"
"She said I should track down Luna Lovegood," I replied. Severus and Draco both gasped in surprise. I glanced over at Draco but his gaze remained on the floor in front of him.
"Grindewald's heir," Severus stated softly, "but she's been in hiding for over ten years. How in the world do you plan on finding her?"
"The Dementors," Khalida replied quickly, "Hogwarts said the Dementors know where she is but we need a Necromancer to speak to them." Severus shifted nervously as Khalida and I both stared at him.
"Don't look at me like that," Severus spat, "I refuse to take part in this insanity."
"But you're already a part of it," I stated, "Besides, if you help me with this I promise to never ask you for another favor."
"Somehow I doubt you'll keep to that promise," Severus snorted derisively.
"I didn't want to have to mention this," I replied as I pushed myself up from the couch to stand in front of the angry potions master, "but you do owe my father a life debt and this would be a good way to repay it." Severus' head snapped up quickly and he gave me a cold look.
"What life debt?" he sneered.
"He killed off Voldemort," I explained, "and essentially returned your life to you. I think that deserves some recognition, don't you think?" His expression paled and I grimaced slightly. It was a low blow but one that was necessary if I ever hoped to get anywhere with him.
"And what do you expect me to do?" Severus ground out angrily, "Go traipsing across the countryside with you in search of Dementors."
"I hadn't really thought of that," I replied quietly.
"Of course not," he growled, "you rarely seem to think at all these days."
"I'm sure we'll…" I was interrupted by a quiet rustling noise coming from the corner to my right.
Severus was on his feet in mere moments, his wand held out in front of him and Draco followed his example. I studied the dark corner and a cloaked figure slowly emerged from the shadows. A moment later a mask came into view and I recognized it as one of the Brotherhood, Lucius Malfoy to be exact. He slowly walked toward me, his own wand drawn and sweeping back and forth between Draco and Severus.
"What is it number Twelve?" I asked. He eyed everyone in the room warily before pulling a plain, black letter-sized folder out of his cloak.
"It is the photograph," he explained as he handed the folder to me. He turned to leave but I stopped him.
"And what of the Fourth?" I asked hesitantly. Lucius' eyes widened in surprise and I mentally slapped myself for being stupid enough to mention Nymphadora in front of Severus and Draco.
"She is resting now," Lucius explained, "She will be given the same choice to return and if she decides to return then she will make the same sacrifice the others have made." I nodded my head in understanding and he disappeared into the shadows once again.
"There were only nineteen Brotherhood members in the Great Hall," Severus said thoughtfully, "So I am assuming that one ran into problems."
"You could say that," I replied cryptically. Severus pinched the bridge of his nose and I could almost see the gears turning in his mind.
"It was Tonks wasn't it?" Draco asked softly, "She was the Fourth." All I could do was nod in reply.
"That would be why her body disappeared," Severus added, "but what did he mean by sacrifice? What do the fallen members sacrifice to return?"
"I can't tell you," I lied. Really I had no idea if I could tell anyone or not but a small voice in my head was telling me I didn't want anyone to know.
"Are you going to look at that picture?" Khalida asked as she eyed the folder in my hand. I sighed heavily and handed the folder to Severus.
"I have a pretty good idea of where that picture was taken," I stated as Severus gave me a puzzled look. "I think you'll recognize it."
Severus shook his head in confusion and slowly opened the folder. A moment later he gasped in surprise and dropped the folder onto his lap. He stared at the photo for a moment longer before looking up into my eyes. Out of habit he made a move to drop to his knees. I put a hand on his shoulder to stop him and then turned away from him so I wouldn't see his embarrassment.
"What is it?" Khalida asked as she took the folder from Severus. Draco strode over to look over her shoulder.
"It looks like some sort of mansion," Draco offered, "It seems familiar to me for some reason, almost as if I've been there."
"Riddle Mansion," Severus stated coldly.
"But why would Harry and Jenny's mum take a photo near Riddle Mansion?" Draco asked in confusion.
"Because," I replied softly, "Because it was her home." Khalida walked over to me and pulled me into a hug.
"That would mean…" Severus voice trailed off and I finished his thought for him.
"Tom Riddle was her father," I sobbed, "Voldemort was my grandfather." I buried my face in Khalida's shoulder and cried. After a few seconds of silence I felt Draco come up behind me and wrap his arms around both Khalida and I.
When Draco and Khalida finally pulled away I looked over to see Severus' reaction. He seemed to be as cool and collected as he usually was but once in awhile he would shake his head slightly as if he was fighting some kind of internal battle. Draco picked up the photograph from where it had fallen on the floor and his eyes widened in surprise.
"I bet you anything this is where that snitch took me!" Draco exclaimed loudly. "But then why would there be another portkey set to go to Jenny's home in Minnesota?" he added thoughtfully.
"Oriel must have returned to the mansion after the Dark Lord died," Khalida stated, "Perhaps she is the one who cleaned out the place as well."
"I doubt it," I replied, "Ministry aurors probably searched the place." Everyone seemed to think about this for a moment before nodding in agreement.
"So where does that leave us?" Khalida asked.
"The same place we left off," I replied, "We need to find a way to speak to the Dementors so we can find that Lovegood woman but I don't see how we can without Severus' help."
"There is a way," admitted Severus, "I could give you my gift and you could find the Dementors yourself."
"You would do that?" I asked in disbelief and Severus chuckled in amusement.
"As morbid as I may seem, I have never enjoyed speaking to the dead. I actually haven't even practiced my skill for over thirty years."
"So what do we need to do for this?" I asked curiously and Severus rolled his eyes.
"Leave it to Potter's daughter to jump into something without even asking about the consequences," he snorted.
"Does it really make a difference at this point? It's not as if things could get much…" Draco rushed over and clapped a hand over my mouth before I could finish my statement.
"Don't even say it," he hissed dangerously. I nodded my head furiously and he slowly removed his hand.
"Do you still have that dagger?" Severus asked and I immediately pulled the dagger from its place on my belt. "Cut your palm and then give the dagger to me."
I ran the blade over my palm nervously and then handed the dagger to Severus as he stood up next to me. He repeated the action on his own palm and then grabbed my hand in his. With his eyes closed he chanted under his breath and I suddenly felt as if a great pressure was pushing down on me. As I groaned under the weight a soft, gray light seemed to envelope me. It remained for a few minutes and then disappeared as Severus pulled his hand away.
"That's it?" I asked disbelievingly and Severus nodded his head slightly.
"Not everything in the wizarding world is pomp and circumstance. Passing on the skill of a Necromancer is a simple matter of abandoning the gift to another," Severus explained as he pulled out his wand and muttered a healing charm on his palm. I held out my own palm and he muttered the charm a second time. I watched in fascination as the cut seemed to pull itself back together and the blood disappeared.
"Draco and I should be getting back," Severus stated sharply, "I'm sure our sudden absence has already raised suspicion." Without another word he stalked over to the other side of the room and waited for Draco to follow but Draco didn't make a move.
"I'm not going back," Draco stated so softly that I could barely hear him. Severus didn't hear him and so he continued to wait. "I'm not going back," Draco stated once again with more conviction.
"What?" Severus snapped angrily.
"Draco I really think…" I broke in and Draco interrupted me.
"I said I'm not going back to Hogwarts," Draco replied sternly, "I'm going with Jenny." Severus glared at him and stalked across the room. Khalida grabbed my hand and pulled me back toward her.
"You have classes to teach," Severus growled, "and now you wish to lose everything to follow your little girlfriend into ruin. What kind of Slytherin are you?" I flinched back at his comment but remained silent. This argument was between him and Draco and I wasn't going to get involved, I was involved in enough conflicts as it was.
"Severus," Draco began in a low tone, "I respect you and I care about you but you have to drop this whole Slytherin obsession."
"I'm not a Slytherin anymore," Draco continued and Snape's eyes widened in surprise, "I graduated from Hogwarts and I'm over thirty fucking years old! How long do you expect to live in the past?"
"No," Draco interrupted, "It's my turn to speak."
"I ran away and hid when I was in school," he explained heatedly, "I hid while others fought for what they believed in. Sure I was just a student but so was Potter and he had the balls to fight to protect his friends and the people he cared about."
"And while others were out fighting so that I could play games and go to classes, my mother, the only person who ever gave a damn about me, the only person I ever cared about, was slowly being destroyed. And what did I do?" He paused for a moment and Severus reached out to him. Draco regarded his gesture with a cold expression and backed away.
"I sat back and watched," he replied softly, "I watched as my father destroyed her and then I ran off and he killed her. I saved myself but what was it all for?"
"Nothing," Draco hissed angrily, "That's what it was for because after all my cunning and self-preservation I had nothing to show for it. No friends, no family, absolutely nothing. Even the great name of Malfoy was worth as much as dirt." I broke away from Khalida's grasp and rushed over to place a reassuring hand on Draco's shoulder.
"But what will I tell Dumbledore?" Severus asked quietly, "And what about your things? How can you travel if you have nothing with you?" Draco reached into his front pocket and pulled out a miniature suitcase. Snape's eyes widened in surprise.
"You planned to do this," Severus stated in disbelief, "You planned this from the very beginning." Draco deposited the suitcase back into his pocket and walked over to stand in front of Severus. He reached up and clasped the professor's shoulders tightly.
"I swore the moment that I befriended Jenny that I would protect her," Draco replied tenderly, "After mother was killed I swore to myself that I would never again sit back and watch something I care about be destroyed. And when Potter killed my father I swore to him that I would take care of my own problems from now on."
"I'm no longer a child," he added as he and Severus stared into each other's eyes, "It's time that I do my own dirty work."
Severus didn't reply with words, instead he pulled the blonde into a forceful hug. They stood that way for a few seconds before Severus patted his back softly and pulled away. With one final nod Severus disapparated with a loud crack.
"Are you sure about this?" I asked quietly as Draco turned to look at me. He sighed loudly and nodded in reply.
"I've never been more sure of anything in my life," he stated as he reached over to take my hands in his own. "I'm not sure what we're going to do now though. Even if we find Lovegood we still have about a million other problems to deal with."
"Well, my father should be back in a year," I replied, "and I'm sure he'll be able to help us."
"Jenny," Draco chuckled, "In a year you could be in the center of a large, messy war. How in the world do you think your father's going to be able to get you out of that?"
"Why not? He saved the world didn't he?" I asked with a shrug.
"So, what does that have to do with anything?" Draco asked in confusion.
"If he could save the world," I stated slowly, "then he should have no trouble saving me."
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Well, there it is. The end of Uncharnel but do not fear. I've already begun working on the sequel.
IN THE NEXT STORY: Jenny, Draco and Khalida track down Luna Lovegood but the girl definitely has some emotional problems. Tensions rise between the AWG and the Ministry. Can Jenny do anything to stop the impending disaster? Jenny also uncovers more dirty secrets about her parent's past and she learns more about what happened to her brother. The group catches up with Charles Smith and he will have a lot of explaining to do.
Thanks for sticking with Uncharnel and I hope you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.
I almost forgot that I promised to put a list of the song lyrics I used for the beginning of each chapter.
1-11Jawbreaker – Basilica
Chapters 12 - 17 Mineral – Slower
Chapters 18 - 24 Quicksand – Unfulfilled
Chapters 25 - 27 Jawbreaker - Shield your eyes
Chapters 28 - 33 Cave In – Requiem
Chapters 34 - 37 Cave In - Big Riff
Chapters 38 - 41 Jawbreaker - Accident Prone
Chapters 42 - 46Jawbreaker - Save Your Generation
Chapters 47 - 49 Mineral - Parking Lot
Chapters 50 - 52 Glasseater - Art of Communication
THE SEQUEL IS UP. THE FIRST CHAPTER IS JUST A SHORT PROLOGUE. HOPE YOU ENJOY! 10 POINTS TO ANYONE WHO CAN FIGURE OUT THE TITLE.