DISCLAIMER: This story is based on characters and situations created

and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited

to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoast Books, and Warner

Bros., Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark

infringement is intended.

Author notes: I want to give a huge thank you to graffiti.decorations

for doing a great job as my BETA (I had so many more mistakes than i

thought). I also need to thank Ionaonie, as she was the one who got me

writing this in the first place and has been a constant sounding board

for ideas, as well giving constant encouragement and ego boosts. This

also means that if you really, really hate the story she the one to

blame :)

If any one wants to contact me for any reason, get in touch


p.s. I promise I'll justify the R rating later ;)

The Enemy of My Enemy


"Are you really sure this is wise headmaster?" Professor McGonagall asked anxiously pushing her glasses higher up her nose "I mean -"

"Minerva, my dear, we have already been over this - at some length as I recall" Dumbledore replied. The small smile on his face went unseen by his companion "Besides, I believe that is his carriage approaching, and we can hardly send him straight back now can we?"

At this she squinted into the darkness and saw that there was indeed a black carriage approaching at some speed, pulled by six black horses and driven by a strange hunched creature. With pursed lips and a look just short of a scowl she nodded. "I suppose you're right headmaster"

"Minerva" Dumbledore began his face serious and the playful tone no longer in his voice "I shall need your support in this. I realise how unusual this is, but desperate times call for desperate measures-"

"And the enemy of my enemy is my friend? Truly Albus I do understand" she said placing a kindly hand on his arm "I even agree… it's just that, well having the man worries me"

Dumbledore nodded gravely "You and I both, you and I both"

As the carriage neared and began to slow, the greatest headmaster Hogwarts had ever known turned to his deputy. "Still," he said the youthful twinkle back in his eyes "at least this one might actually last more than the year. We have been going through the Defence Against the Dark Arts teachers at a rather shocking rate. I would hate to have anyone think me wasteful"

Before she could reply the carriage drew to a stop in front of the pair, and an elegant long fingered hand the colour of fresh snow reached from the window and waved in greeting. From inside the darkness of the carriage a deep silken voice floated out "Headmaster, how good of you to greet in person." As the voice spoke the hunched driver jumped from his seat at the front and shuffled around to the door, opening it and bowing low before shuffling back. Slowly and deliberately the figure inside stepped down to stand directly in front of the two. Slightly taller than Dumbledore, he stood with his long black coat open to the wind and snapping about him, his deathly white chest naked beneath. For a moment his intense violet eyes searched Dumbledore's sparkling blue with a hint of hunger, then suddenly the full lips that looked stained with wine broke into a wide boyish grin "I can't tell you how much I've been looking forward to this Headmaster, the students arrive tomorrow, yes?"

Dumbledore returned the grin "Yes that's right, I'm pleased to find you so eager. Now" he said breathing on his hands and rubbing them together "why don't we get out of the cold, hmm?"

The new arrival nodded and smiled, then turned to address Professor McGonagall for the first time "And you must be Minerva McGonagall? I look forward to working with you."

She tried to reply with something similar, but to her dismay found herself mutely starring at the long twin fangs his smile had made visible.

"Um, yes well now that you two have met lets get indoors shall we?" Dumbledore said quickly, ushering them both inside. He sighed. "This might be more difficult than I imagined…" he muttered to him self as he followed, shutting the main doors with a wave of his wand.

Part One

As he stood waiting on the platform for the Hogwarts express, Harry felt something a kin to happiness for the first time since Sirius had died. The Dursley's had been as awful as ever to him, barely talking to or looking at him but he hadn't been able to care. In fact, he hadn't been able to rouse the strength of care about much of anything for most of the summer. Letters from Hermione, Ron, Mr and Mrs. Weasley, Remus Lupin and even Dumbledore had all sat unopened for the better part of two months. Harry had known they meant well but couldn't bear to read the words of condolences, the reminders of the death, and worst of all, the assurance that he would feel better with time. He didn't begin to come back to himself until his birthday. He had actually forgotten what day it was, or rather hadn't bothered keeping track so it was something of a shock when Uncle Vernon came panting up the stairs bellowing

"HARRY! HARRY! I WON'T HAVE IT! DO YOU HEAR ME! NOT IN THIS HOUSE!" red faced and gasping Uncle Vernon burst through the door "THE LOT OF THEM! HERE! HAD TO INVITE THEM IN! THE NEIGHBOURS! COULDN'T LET THEM SEE THAT LOT!" he yelled at a shocked Harry, spittle flying out of his mouth, eyes gleaming manically and face getting redder still.

"Erm…sorry? Had to invite who in?" He asked confused

"OH DON'T YOU EVEN TRY TO DENY IT, MY BOY!" his uncle practically screamed, his face now so red Harry began to wonder if his head might actually pop.

"Uncle Vernon, I'm not denying anything, mostly because I have no idea what you're talking about!" Harry said folding his arms, beginning to get angry himself.

"Perhaps I can make thing a little clearer" said a new, much calmer, voice from the doorway. Harry and Vernon both spun towards the new comer.

"Remus! What are you doing here?!" Harry began before being cut off by his irate Uncle


With a sigh Lupin pointed his wand at Vernon, "Silencio." And suddenly the room was silent. For a moment Vernon continued trying to rant and then looked back and forth in horror between the two wizards. After only a moments pause his lips started moving again (Harry could never be sure but he could swear he was mouthing "Oh God! I'm deaf!")He then rounded on Remus, shaking his finger with great motions that set his whole arm wobbling. "Right, that will be quite enough" Remus told the irate mountain of flesh, waving his wand in the air "Kindly go down stairs and wait, I need to talk to Harry" Vernon suspiciously eyed the wand, glared at Remus and then did the best a man his size could do to edge past him.

"Remus what on earth are you doing here? What's going on?"

Closing the door Remus wearily rubbed his face before turning to Harry "Well Harry me and some friends of yours just thought we'd come and wish you a happy birthday" he said with a tired smile "Well that and to make sure you hadn't dropped off the face of the planet"

Harry looked up at him and for the first time saw how worn and haggard he looked, even by his usual standard "I'm really sorry about the letters, Remus, it's just…"

"Its all right Harry – we all understand. But you have to start getting back into the world Harry, it doesn't stop just because one man dies, no matter who he is-" at this Harry started to speak but was stopped by Remus raising his hand. "No matter who he is, or how much he meant to us. Please don't forget Harry, Sirius was like a brother to me – one I only just got back after years of thinking he was lost to me forever. But we have to go on Harry; we have too many important things to do to let our grief bury us." Remus crossed the room and gave Harry's shoulder a gentle squeeze "I'll be waiting downstairs with Ron and Hermione," he smiled. "The Weasley twins did want to join us but I thought they might be a little much for you today."

Harry smiled back at him, and quickly took off his glasses to wipe at his eyes. "Did you say Ron and Hermione were here?"

"Yes, they're both waiting in the living room. Your uncle pushed your cousin and aunt out the door the second we arrived, but I'm sure your uncle's been keeping them amused with mime." And for the first time a while Harry laughed.

The two of them went down and greeted Ron and Hermione, then the other three watched as Harry opened his presents, including ones from all of the Wesleys, Dumbledore and Hagrid. Once they were done Lupin removed the front of the Dursley's fireplace, ignoring the silent protests of Uncle Vernon. Holding out a bag of floo powered to each of them, Remus informed them they would be spending the day in Diagon Alley. The three younger wizards stepped into the fire and vanished while Remus stayed to fix the fire and return Vernon's voice, promising he would Apparate and meet them shortly. Once he arrived he took them to Florean Fortescue's and bought them all them all huge sundaes. Of course once Florean found out it was Harry's birthday he insisted on preparing a special extra large birthday sundae free of charge. By the time they left all of them felt rather sick. The rest of the day was spent browsing the shops and talking. The others sensed that then wasn't the time for any weighty matters so they all just enjoyed being together. Harry was also thrilled to hear that his two best friends were going to be Prefects again. If nothing else he couldn't help laughing when Ron described what the twins had been like the moment they found out the news. After dropping the other two off, Remus took Harry back to Number 4 Privet drive where the Dursley's all did their best to pretend that nothing at all had happened earlier.

The next day Harry had opened all of the letters he had received and spent the most of the day writing replies. He still wasn't 'fine', and wasn't sure he would be again, but he was going to at least try. The rest of the summer he had buried himself in his schoolwork, reading everything he had been able to get his hands on. He had even been doing some work for potions. In fact, Harry had never felt more prepared for the start of term. Even Hermione was impressed, although when Harry asked her what she had read over the summer he quickly realised it was at least a dozen or so more books than him.

"Oi, Harry are you listening to me?" asked Ron, poking him in the ribs and bringing him sharply back to the present.

"Sorry, Ron, not even a little. What did you say?" Harry grinned.

"Oh, that's charming that is, ignoring your Prefect" Ron said grinning back and buffing the badge on his robe. "I asked who you thought the new Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher's gonna be? Do you think maybe they asked Moody back? Maybe even Remus!?" Ron asked, getting excited

"Don't be silly Ron, they're both far too busy with the Order" said Hermione as she walked up to join them, startling Ron.

"Bloody hell! Don't do that Hermione!" Ron shot a look at Harry. "You know, we should put a bell on her- " But he quickly shut up seeing Hermione's glare.

"A bell? What exactly are you implying Ronald Weasley?"

Luckily for Ron, at that point the Hogwarts Express came into view and everyone one was far too busy loading their things on and finding a place to sit. After much searching Harry, Ron and Hermione eventually found a seat in a carriage with Luna and Neville, and after all exchanging hellos and asking about each others summer, they all settled in for the ride.

"So Ron, I believe we were going to discuss your 'bell' suggestion?" Hermione asked sweetly.

Ron groaned "If I just say I'm very, very, very sorry now can we drop this? Please?"

"Well all right then, but when the trolley comes you have to buy me a pumpkin juice" she demanded haughtily. Neville looked at Harry confused, and Harry gave him a 'don't ask' shake of the head. Luna was too engrossed in a copy of the Quibbler to pay attention.

"So, who do you think the new Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher will be then, Neville?" Asked Ron, clearly keen to change the subject.

"Oh, I don't know really. I guess anyone will be better than Umbridge though," Neville said, to which they all nodded.

"Whoever it is, they've got to be mad to want the job. After all, look what happened to the others." Ron added.

At this Luna looked up from her magazine. "Maybe the job has a curse on it, one that no one can detect, like the curses of Wump Tee sorcerers."

This statement sparked a rather heated debate between Hermione and Luna as to whether or not there really were such things as the Wump Tee sorcerers and whether they did, as Luna insisted, have a base on the moon. By the time the two had agreed to disagree, Hogwarts was coming into sight.

"Ravenclaw!" the Sorting Hat yelled and Jeremy Wotts, the last of the first years, rushed over to join his new house mates amid loud cheering and clapping.

"Excellent, excellent," Dumbledore beamed. "A most warm welcome to you all my dear students, both new and old. As is customary, I shall begin with notices and announcements."

Harry and the other Gryffindor's (as well as everyone else in fact) listened intently to all of the usual announcements waiting both for news of Voldemort and, of course, to hear who the new Defence Against the Dark Arts teachers would be. They did not have to wait long for them to be broached, although on both counts they found themselves rather disappointed.

"As all of you are no doubt aware, the Ministry has been taking action over the past few months against Lord Voldemort." At this frightened whispers ran through the room. "However, it is important that the events outside these walls, no matter how momentous, are not allowed to affect your education any more than is strictly necessary. On this note, I want to assure you all that here in Hogwarts you are quite safe. Myself, the other members of staff, and some of the top members of the Ministry have done every thing possible to see to it that Hogwarts is now more secure than ever before."

"I can't believe that's all he's going to say!" Ron whispered to Harry and Hermione.

"Really Ron," Hermione said with a snort. "He can hardly give details of what's going on to the whole school, can he?" Before Ron could reply Dumbledore continued.

"I am sure that you are all wondering who is going to be taking up the position of Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher. Alas, I can not tell you." Dumbledore sighed, smiling slightly, as the students looked about confused, muttering to each other. "In fact, you shall not even be able to tell one another as there are spells in place to prevent it – you will not know who your new teacher is until your first lesson." At this, muttering became open chatter until the Headmaster raised his hands for quiet, now openly smiling "This is not for any sinister or terrible reason, but rather at the request of our new Professor. I think you will all find over the course of the year that he has something of a flair for the dramatic"

"McGonagall doesn't look as though she approves too much, does she?" Harry grinned at Ron as Dumbledore went on.

"While I'm sure that you will all be somewhat shocked at the new appointment, I ask that you trust me in this. I freely admit that he is something of an… unusual choice, but he is a true expert in his field, as well as being an important member of a new alliance formed against Lord Voldemort." By now the entire room was buzzing with talk and with theories "But now to more important matters," Dumbledore said abruptly, and with a wave of his wand the table filled with food. "Dig in!" And with that he sat down and started filling his plate, chatting happily with the others on the high table.

For a moment everyone just stared at the headmaster until it became obvious he was not about to say any more. Amid much shrugging everyone started to eat and talk. On each of the four tables there was only one real topic of conversation, who was the new teacher? Had any one been paying close attention to the ceiling they might have wondered what the strange thin mist hanging above them was. Had they also had incredibly sharp hearing they might have heard the sound of an amused, soft velvety laugh coming from the mist. But of course everyone was far more interested in the platters of delicious food in front of them.

Next morning at breakfast at the Gryffindor table everyone was still speculating wildly. "What alliance do you think Dumbledore was talking about?" Dean Thomas asked, spearing a sausage with his fork.

"You don't think its anything to do with the giants do you?" said Ron looking worried.

"Don't worry mate, I can't really see giant in a classroom." Harry laughed trying to imagine Grawp setting homework.

"Bloody hope not," muttered Ron. "When do you think we'll have our first lesson with whoever it is?"

"Erm, Ron? Aren't you supposed to be the one telling us that?" Seamus replied getting a blank look from Ron. "The time-tables? I think that's where Hermione is right now." At this Ron choked on his toast, looked aghast at first Seamus, then Dean and finally Harry before running off, still coughing up bits of toast. By the time Ron returned with a scowling Hermione, who was clearly not pleased about the performance of her fellow prefect, the conversation had turned to the Quidditch and deciding on a new captain now that Angelina had graduated.

"Well good news!" Hermione beamed at them, forgetting she was meant to be scowling. "We have DADA today, third period so we'll find out who our teacher is!"

"Cool!" said Dean taking his timetable.

"Oh great," Harry moaned pointing at his timetable. "But first we have double Potions with the Slytherin." Hermione just shrugged.

"Can't have everything Harry. By the way, does any one know where on earth the catacombs are?"

"I remember Fred and George saying something about them once," said Ron scratching his head "but I'm pretty sure they said they had been sealed off for years. Why?"

Hermione sighed, gave Ron a withering look and tapped the timetable in his hands. "Because Ron, that's where we have DADA"

After all his reading over the summer Harry had gone into Potions feeling confident for perhaps the first time ever. He very quickly realised what a mistake that had been. True, it had been fun to see Snape's face when Harry had been able to answer the questions thrown at him, but it didn't last long.

"Bravo Mr. Potter," Snape drawled, giving a slow theatrical clap. "You may actually have reached a level where I can describe you as border line competent, and it's only taken you five years. Well done." After that Snape spent the lesson alternating between asking a smirking Malfoy questions that any second year would have found basic (and then rewarding Slytherin outrageously) and asking Harry absurdly difficult questions that had even Hermione shrugging helplessly. By the time the class was over, it was as though they had never had a break for the summer at all.

The catacombs turned out to be harder to find than they expected. Lower even than the dungeons and on the other side of the castle, it was clear that Ron had been right and that, until recently, it had indeed been sealed. In fact, had it not been for the torches lighting the way, they would only have been able to tell which of the maze like corridors to go down because all of the others were clogged with what looked like centuries of cobwebs. Eventually they came to two enormous doors that appeared to be made from brass, engraved in strange, somehow sinister designs and heavily inlayed with gold and rubies. Everyone stood at the creepy looking doors for a while looking at each other in silence, no one wanting to open them. Finally Harry stepped forward. "Well… guess we'd better go in…" But just as he was about to reach for them the doors swung inward with an eerie creak and voice floated out of the misty darkness inside. "Welcome, my children, enter freely and of your own will…" Harry took a startled step backwards as the doors opened, and looked at Ron, who swallowed and motioned Harry forward through the doors. Harry scowled, but did walk into the room, the rest of the class following. Once they were all inside the doors slammed shut, cutting off the light from the torches in corridor and leaving them in total darkness for a moment, causing Lavender to let out a small scream. Suddenly the room exploded into light startling everyone, and making them all blink as their eyes adjusted. As Harry looked about it took him a moment to take in what he was seeing. The room was huge; it had high vaulted ceilings, hanging on the walls were beautiful candelabra filled with deep red candles, and one entire wall was taken up with a vast fireplace that was burning a strange blue flame, seemingly without any fuel. The rosewood Louis XIV style (though Harry had no idea that's what it was) furniture all looked antique and very expensive, with all the upholstery in the same rich crimson silk. Instead of desks there were an array of love seats and chairs with an odd end table or coffee table scattered around. At the front of the room there was a slightly raised platform with a divan on it in the same red silk but with what looked like a solid gold base inlayed with rubies. Behind this was another door, smaller than the one they had come through but just as richly decorated. The room also had heavy, sensual incense hanging in the air that Harry found far from unpleasant.

"Where do you think he is?" Hermione asked looking around.

"God knows… I mean he invited us in so he must be here, right?" Ron replied nervously.

As they spoke Harry noticed that what he had taken as part of the incense smoke was swirling and moving towards the raised platform "Umm, guys..." he trailed off, pointing. As it concentrated and swirled closer Harry saw that it was mist and not smoke at all, and it was slowly forming the shape of a man.

"Mmmm, again welcome my little ones," said a voice from the mist shape with a throaty laugh. As the mist form became clearer and clearer the class huddled closer together. The figure laughed again and spoke in a strangely flirting tone. "You need not be frightened of me, come sit." As it finished the mist finally became a distinct form, although Harry wasn't sure if he had found the talking mist or the man standing before him more shocking. The man was deathly pale; in fact pale was an understatement. He was pure white. For a moment Harry was uncomfortably reminded of the new form of Lord Voldemort, but in only took him a second to see a difference. Voldemort's skin was sickly somehow – it brought to mind bones and death, like everything about his new form it had a sense of 'wrongness' to it. The man in front of Harry now was the white of alabaster or marble. In fact, Harry though, was it not for his face he would look almost like a statue. From the waist down he wore a simple but well cut pair of black linen trousers and no shoes. His chest was bare and his arms spread wide, his head leaned slightly to one side as he regarded them with faintly glowing, long lashed, violet eyes. His hair was like spun gold and hung in waves just past shoulders. His lips were sensual, full and red. Slowly the man licked his lips and smiled a close-mouthed smile. He lowered his arms, and then he stood silently regarding the class, eyes moving from one face to the next. He locked gazes with each student in turn, but none met his gaze for more than a moment. Harry noticed, however, that most of the time people looked away they were blushing and looked as much embarrassed as frightened. Despite the fact he was stood at the head of the group, Harry's eyes were the last the strange, pale man looked into. Even before they did, Harry was determined he would not look away, after his last class with Snape he wasn't in the mood to be intimidated. As soon as his green eyes met the strange violet ones Harry felt a shock go through him. There was a sense of challenge in the gaze, but far more besides. Locked in his eyes was a sense of terrible ancient power, a lustful hunger, desire, malice, threat and invitation all in one. Harry understood why his friends had blushed and felt sure he must be himself but he continued to hold the gaze. He felt naked, exposed, venerable and to his horror, increasingly… aroused. The ruby lips smiled wider still but stayed closed as the violet eyes bore into him. Harry's breathing had become heavier and he was beginning to feel blood starting to flow to potentially embarrassing places. Finally he tore his eyes away, although to his shock he found it difficult to do so. As he looked down Harry felt strangely shaky and out of breath, he didn't look up again until the man laughed loudly running his hand through his hair as he did and flashing a the class a set of ivory fangs.

"My apologies, but I do so enjoy my petty games," he grinned wickedly at them all giving them all the chance to properly see that his canine teeth were very long, very sharp and very… well vampire looking.

"He's a bloody vampire!" exclaimed Ron very loudly, surprising everyone including himself.

"I am indeed a vampire, though of a rather rare breed," the man agreed in playful silken tones as he stretched languidly out on the divan, "and I'm bloody as frequently as I get the chance to be." He finished, eyes sparkling. "As you should all have guessed I am your new teacher for the Defence Against the Dark Arts…" he paused dramatically. "I am Prince Innadrue Felldane of the Court of the Vampire Lords," he looked out expectantly. When he received only blank looks from his statement he sighed and went on. "To be expected I suppose, very few have heard of my kind. I'll tell you what, if any of you here can tell me what a Vampire Lord is I'll give you fifty house points. And by the way saying – a lord of vampires- isn't going to be good enough." At this the whole class turned expectantly towards Hermione, who looked a little flustered.

"Um, well I think I read something about a Vampire Lord in …well it was in a book called Abominations: The Wickedest Creatures of the Dark Ages actually," Hermione started sheepishly. Innadrue just smile at her encouragingly.

"Go ahead my child; I don't mind what your source is, or how silly a title it has."

"Well," Hermione continued, getting into her stride now. "It said that a Vampire Lord was just like a normal vampire except that they're more powerful, were born vampire not turned into them, and can only be killed with silver weapons."

"Hmmm, and who, by the way, wrote your silly titled book?" Innadrue questioned.

"A woman named Mary Flutterworth"

"I see. Well if you have anything else by this woman may I suggest you burn it? I'm afraid everything other than the fact we are indeed more powerful than common vampires that was utter, utter, very, very stupid drivel. However, I shall give you five points for having heard of us at all." Hermione didn't seem to know whether to be pleased about the five points or put out that her answer had been called drivel.

"All of you sit down and I shall explain things to you." They were told as he airily waved his hand at the chairs. Once they were all seated he continued in a more serious tone than before. "First of all, I shall tell you what a Vampire Lord is. Put very simply, we are vampires who used to be wizards when we were alive. This is not unique, many ordinary vampires were also wizards before their undeath; what sets us apart is that we did not lose our magic or our selves in the way that they did. Normally when a wizard is turned into a vampire they lose all ability to cast magic and their wand instantly rots away. Perhaps, more important than this, they lose the ability to feel emotion in the way they did as humans. They are eternal lifeless husks, they retain their intellect but they can no longer truly feel anything. Physically, they are far stronger than a human and they often have the ability to change into the form of simple beasts, and to mesmerise those with weak minds. We, on the other hand, retain our magic, though in a changed form and instead of rotting away the wood of our wands petrifies, joining us in death. Our magic is limited, we can not manipulate living flesh or create life in any way – we are tied to death. We can still perform most charms and curses but not with the same spells as you use. Also our spells are much more time consuming and draining. If I am honest, were it simply a contest of magical ability, even the best of my kind would struggle to beat a competent adult wizard. However," he said with relish, sitting upright and grinning again, "we have a great deal of other powers. We are massively stronger and quicker than ordinary vampires, we have an enormous resistance to a great many curses and other forms of magic, we can read minds, control the weak willed, travel as mist, summon storms, and on top of all this we retain our emotions. They are more volatile and somewhat darker than mortal ones, but frankly that's just another way of saying more interesting and better, don't you think?" He laid back on the divan, beaming at them. They in turn looked rather shocked and tried to take everything in. "Well does any one have any question? Don't worry I don't bite – well actually I do – but I won't, so…questions?" Looking rather nervous Ron raised his hand. "Yes you, the worried looking red head with the badge. What is that badge by the way?"

Ron coughed awkwardly "It mean I'm a prefect-"

"Really?" Innadrue asked, suddenly leaning forward and peering at Ron intently then at Hermione. "And you must be a prefect as well?" She nodded. "Are you a couple then?"

"NO! We are not!" Ron spluttered while Hermione just stared open mouthed.

"Why not? Frankly I think you should be less picky. She seems delightful to me, and she's obviously very clever-" Innadrue went on seemingly oblivious to the look of horror on Hermione's face or Ron's spluttering "Oh but I'm getting off track. I do that at times. What was the question red head prefect boy?"

"Are you mental or something?!" Ron finally choked out.

"Not as far as I'm aware. Next question."

Harry couldn't help grinning and he noticed he wasn't alone. After a bit Harry raised his hand. "Um, sir-"

"Call me Innadrue."

"Err ok; Innadrue, I guess we kind know what you are now, but… why is a vampire teaching us in the first place? Also aren't vampires… kind of evil?"

"To answer your second question first, yes we are. I personally am deliciously so." He said with a laugh. "And to answer your first, and expand more honestly on the second," he continued confusingly quickly, "I am here as the result of a treaty." He paused expectantly.

After a few moments it became clear he was not about to continue. Finally Lavender raised her hand. "Professor Innadrue, what treaty?"

"An excellent question, and call me 'sir'. A treaty between my master, the King of the Vampires and your own Ministry of Magic. You see, while we may not conform to conventional morality, we are not, as Mr. Potter fears, evil. Far more importantly we're really quite a proud bunch and none of us really like the idea of bending our knees to Voldemort. So this time we have agreed to fight against him rather than just leave you all to it. And it is in this spirit of co-operation and friendship I am here as your teacher. You really should feel very honoured you know, there are only eight of us Vampire Lords in the whole of the world, and I'm by far the cleverest." Innadrue said earnestly. For a moment the class simply sat looking at their rather odd new teacher, no one sure of how to respond, till finally Seamus broke the silence.

"There are eight of you? No offence sir, but how useful is that against You Know Who?"

Innadrue smiled, fangs showing once again "You may call me Innadrue. And it is useful because we command the vast majority of lesser, common, vampires. Even as we speak the armies of my King are doing battle in Eastern Europe against the forces Voldemort has amassed. Now are there any more questions?" Seeing only slightly bemused faces and no raised hands he continued "Wonderful. Then lets us begin."

Over the next hour the vampire spoke on an array of topics, outlining what they would do over the next year. And while his strange, playful manner was somewhat off putting at first, it soon became clear to every one that his knowledge of the subject was vast. As the class drew to a close and they all began to pack away their things, Innadrue motioned for silence once more. "Just before you leave I have a few last things to tell you. The door behind me," he said indicating the gilded door behind the divan "leads to my private quarters, anyone who even attempts to enter them will die a very slow death." As he said this he again locked eyes with them each in turn, though far quicker this time and with a threatening glare. "Secondly, I remind you that you can not mention who I am to anyone, as there are spells in place to stop you. This will disappear after the first week, when I will have had my chance to shock each and every class in the school." He grinned in a surprisingly boyish way "By the way, what did you think of the mist entrance?" he asked eagerly

"Definitely mental" Ron muttered under his breath, but Harry found himself grinning back, albeit with less teeth on show.

By the end of the day they it had become clear that neither Dumbledore nor Innadrue had been exaggerating about the spell preventing them discussing their new teacher. As soon as they had left the classroom deep in the catacombs Harry and his class mates found that they were unable to even talk about what had just happened, even to one another. In fact, even writing about it proved impossible, as Harry discovered later in Transfiguration when he handed Hermione what he had thought was a note asking what she had thought of their first Defence Against the Dark Arts lesson.

"Harry what are you doing?" a confused looking Hermione asked holding up the note for Harry to see. To his shock it was covered in illegible scribbling.

"Is there something you would like to share with the rest of the class Mr. Potter?" Professor McGonagall suddenly said, startling both Harry and Hermione. Seeing the note, she walked over and held out her hand. Reluctantly Hermione handed it to her. A small scowl on her face McGonagall turned to Harry. "I shall guess that you were attempting to write about Professor Innadrue, correct?" Harry nodded "Well Mr. Potter, spells in place are not so easily circumvented. It was Professor Dumbledore himself who came up with them so I suggest you stop trying to gossip and pay attention."

"Wait a minute!" Ron suddenly shouted "You said his name!"

McGonagall turned to Ron, scowl darkening "Of course I can say his name Mr. Weasley, your new teacher's dramatics do not limit other members of staff." It was very clear to everyone in the class that their new teacher was not a topic that the Head of Gryffindor was particularly keen to talk about. Wisely, every one did their best to concentrate for the rest of the class.