Lord Voldemort was scheming again. He had to come up with a new plan, and he had to devise it quickly. Now that the bumbling idiots in the Ministry had finally realized the truth about his return, he wouldn't have as much time as he had previously hoped for to execute his diabolical plan for world, or at least United Kingdom, domination. He idly twirled around in circles in his brand new genuine dragonwood swivel chair. He prodded the spiffy green and orange paisley cushion with his wand, making it puff up to give him more back support.

There was a knock on his study door. Without turning, He-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named called out imperiously, "Come."

"Er, Master…" Peter Pettigrew sniveled. "There's a few, er, people who would like a word with you…"

Now Voldemort turned towards the door and cowering frame of, quite sadly, his most devoted follower. Once again, the Dark Lord paused to consider the depths to which he had to have sunk before accepting help from such an odious little man as Peter Pettigrew. But now was not the time to ruminate about the many shortcomings of his minions. He hardly had the time and there were guests to entertain.

Voldemort stood, grinning broadly. "Ah, yes, Peter. Show them in, we wouldn't want to keep them wait—" He stop with a strangled snarl.

Harry Potter stepped through the door, followed by none other than Hermione Granger, Arthur, Molly, Bill, Charlie, Fred, George, Ginny and Ron Weasley, Albus Dumbledore, Remus Lupin, Minerva McGonagall, Mad-Eye Moody, the front end of a centaur… and the list could go on, but why waste time and paper proving that Harry Potter will always have more followers than The Bad Guy when he already knows this bitter truth?

"What—? Harry Potter—? How? Who? Why?" the Dark Lord stumbled over his snake-like tongue, bewildered by the sudden appearance of his archenemy. Pausing to gather his scattered thoughts, he turned on Peter, who was cowering in the corner. "Why you little—! How could you? After all I have done for you! You will pay, you sniveling, slimy, wretch of a —"

"That's enough, Voldemort," Harry Potter boomed impressively, sounding rather like Dumbledore with a megaphone shoved down his throat. "Your time has come, and it has, regrettably, left you no time to deal with turncoat rats."

"Quite right!" Ron exclaimed, but was silenced by a piercing red glare from Voldemort. The Dark Lord wasn't about to be verbally manhandled by anyone less than the title character!

Voldemort sighed in disgust. It would be just like the author to spring this significant battle on him when he was unprepared. Once again, Voldemort realized the foresight of always changing out of one's flannel rubber ducky pajamas before beginning the day's work. With a resigned sigh he pulled his wand from his voluminous black sleeve. He paused for a moment then said, "Hold on here. I don't think it's fair that you get all your minions—"

"Friends," The Potter corrected.

"—Whatever. What I mean is that I should have some sort of backup so if I die, which I find highly unlikely," he laughed haughtily, enjoying how it seemed to annoy the bushy little mudblood, "I'll at least get a chance to take some of you with me."

Harry turned to glance at Dumbledore who shrugged. Harry, in turn, shrugged at Voldemort. "I don't really see why not."

"Alrighty then." You-Know-Who hiked up his sleeve and placed a long, thin finger on the dark mark tattooed onto his forearm. It began to glow ominously. Soon there was a cacophony of voices out in the hallway. "Come on, make a little room for my minions to get through," Voldemort commanded. Rather reluctantly, the Good Guys did so, and a stream of people oozed through the doorway.

"Hey, what is this, Master?" Bellatrix asked peevishly. "What do you need us for? You can take 'em all down with one tiny little hex, eh Master? Though I wouldn't mind getting my hands on a few of them… Ol' Sirius died a bit too quickly and cleanly for my tastes. Whaddaya say, Master? Huh huh? Can we? Can we? Please??"

"Shut it, Bella. Now is not the time for your obnoxious inveigling. I have work to do." Voldemort waited until his Death Eaters were assembled in a semi-circle behind him before turning again to Harry Potter. "Now, then, Potter. It has come down to the two of us. All alone—"

"Not exactly," Hermione pointed out.

Voldemort ignored her. "Just you and me… Bad versus Good… man to man… mano a mano… hombre a hombre… just you, me—"

"Oh bloody hell, stop stalling!" Fred called out.

"Yeah, and these ellipses are getting irritating," Ginny added.

"I'm not stalling!" Voldemort snarled. "I'm waxing poetic! And I like ellipses! So bugger off!"

"Sorry, mate, no can do. We're here to kill you remember?" George smiled slightly.

"How could I forget?" Voldemort snapped crossly. "Well, whatever. Might as well get on with it. No point in delaying the inevitable, little Potter," he added scathingly. He opened his mouth to incant a spell but Remus Lupin stopped him. "Now what?" he barked.

"I thought you'd like to know that as Hero of This Story, Harry gets to incant the first spell," Lupin informed You-Know-Who.

"What?!" Voldemort screeched, outraged. "Where did you pull that stupid rule from?"

"Right here, dear," Molly explained patiently, pulling a large, leather bound book from her robes. Voldemort didn't even want to guess at how she managed to fit it in there. "The script, honey. Here, on page three hundred and ninety-two, second paragraph, fifth line down… you see it?" The matronly Weasley held out the book for Voldemort to examine.

He shoved it from her hand impatiently, upset that he had been so quickly outwitted all ready. "What is this, a Mel Brooks film? I recognize no script! I am the author of my own destiny!" Voldemort waved his hands around dramatically, a crazed gleam in his red eyes. He was about to quote Julius Caesar, Act 1, Scene 2, lines 147-148, when Harry Potter's spell hit him in the chest. He felt nothing but a small fizz as the spell burned through his favorite cloak, leaving a star shaped hole the size of a lemon. This only caused him to laugh even louder. "Is that the best you can do, my sweet Potter? Try this! Avada Ke— Hey!"

The Dark Lord stumbled as Harry shouted, "Petrificus Totalus!" and then, "Expelliarmus!" Voldemort's wand flew from his lax grip into Harry's ready hand.

"This isn't fair at all!" Voldemort shrieked. "It's against all the rules of Fair Dueling! It's an outrage!"

"Since when do you care about following rules of equity?" McGonagall asked testily.

"Whenever they're in my favor!" Voldemort snapped back, struggling to get up. He had managed to rise to his knees when Lucius carelessly trod on his cloak, sending him sprawling once more, all dignity lost. "Curse you, you bumbling fool! Why I ever let you join my Death Eaters, I'll never know!"

"Give up, Voldemort," Harry thundered. "Yield, and mayhaps I shall find it in me to pardon thee insofar as I shall award thee instant and painless death. There is naught more for which thou canst hope."

"When did we turn medieval?" Hermione whispered to Ron, who shrugged.

Voldemort spat at Harry's feet. "That's how I feel about your crappy terms. If I'm to die what difference does it make how?" Voldemort sighed and his shoulders slumped in defeat. "All I ever wanted was to make a name for myself, you know? When you grow up an orphan, abandoned by society, all you ever desire is a little bit of fame. Can't you understand?" Voldemort sniffed dramatically, and even managed to squeeze one small tear from the corner of his evil eye.

Harry rolled his eyes. "Come off it, Voldy." He shook his head, sounding more like himself. "You don't really think I'm going to fall for that, do you?"

Voldemort sighed bitterly. "It was worth a try… All right. Kill me." He closed his eyes tightly, waiting for the final blow. When it didn't come he opened his eyes carefully, only to find that he was in his swivel chair. He looked up. There was no one in the room. He stood up and looked at the door. It was closed. His wand was still up his sleeve and he had full control of all his basic motor functions.

Suddenly understanding dawned. It had been a dream! He was still alive! He still had time to plan his world domination! Voldemort performed a hasty, celebratory little jig before there came a knock on the door.

"Come!" Voldemort called out cheerily. There was nothing that would dampen his dark mood. Or so he thought.

"Er, Master…" Peter Pettigrew sniveled as he poked his head through the doorway. "There's a few, er, people who would like a word with you…"

The Dark Lord's smile slipped off his face. He jerked the door open the rest of the way and, screaming hysterically, ran straight into Harry Potter, picked himself up and ran through the house into the street where he was summarily run over by a semi.

Harry Potter gazed down at the Dark Lord's flattened carcass from his study window. "Well," he shrugged, "that takes care of that." He turned and led his following back down the stairs, past a huddled group of stunned Death Eaters, and out into the world. "Somehow, I never thought it'd be that easy," he muttered.