THE DRAGON LORD
PART 1: THE PROPHECY
"The new Dragon Lord comes,
One to destroy the Darkness,
And restore the balance.
Blood of the Black Dragon,
Son of the Stag,
Mind of the Serpent,
Heart of the Lion, Soul of Power,
And Marked by Death.
Battles in the future wait, For the Lord to come,
Lord of Fire and Air,
To Banish the Dark that Seeks to control and destroy.
The Lord will dance with Death And he will fly with Hope.
Wait for his coming,
The time has come,
Beware, Lord of Darkness,
The Dragon Lord comes, Marked as an equal, to his lover."
As he stopped speaking, the tall wizard fell to his knees, black eyes unfocused. Strands of emerald green magic swirled and circled him, playing with his hair and robes, leaving strange, markings on his pale skin where the magic touched. Only a few of those who watched recognized the aura of Power and Sight that glowed around the wizard.
Then the magic was gone and he collapsed. "Professor Snape!" Only three seventh year students rushed to the fallen professor's side.
"He needs medical attention," Harry Potter said, examining the Potions Master as best he could, kneeling at the man's side. Hermione fidgeted nervously from behind Harry, at a loss at what to do. Draco Malfoy held the older wizard's hand; worry humanizing his normally icy features.
"Severus, please, wake up." The blond whispered desperately, drawing Harry's attention to him.
"Malfoy... Draco, we need to get him to the Hospital wing. The Headmaster needs to be told. The side effects of such a prophecy can be varied and I fear that he may not wake up if we don't do something very soon. Help me." His rival glanced at him, tightening his grip on Snape's hand.
"Prophecy? What exactly do you know, Potter?"
"Enough to know that you must do everything I say to ensure Professor Snape's well being. Can you trust in my experience?" Malfoy hesitated for just a second before nodding.
Harry turned to Hermione. "Herm, go tell the Headmaster what's happened. The password is Oreos. We will be in the Hospital Wing. Gryffindors, go back to the common room."
"Slytherins, back to the dungeons. Now!" Draco said sharply. The other students scattered, only a few remaining behind long enough to clean up the dungeon room. Only Ron stayed behind. He was angry with Harry.
"Harry, what the hell are you doing, mate? Why the fuck would you ever help Snape! He hates you and you hate him." The redhead nearly shouted, but Harry ignored his tone.
"Ron, I don't care who he is, the man has suffered from a vision! I am the only one who can help him, and think of everything he's done for us! He saved my bloody life more than once, so I will do the same. And no, I don't hate him, and please, go back to the common room." Ron just looked at him, disgusted, turning sharply on his heel as he stormed from the room.
Harry turned back to Draco. "Come on, help me get him up; using magic will only aggravate his condition." He took one of Snape's arms, put it around his shoulders and lifted the unconscious man from the floor. Draco took Snape's other arm, and together, they hauled the Potions Master up to the hospital wing, meeting an anxious Madame Pompfrey. Despite her concerns, she allowed Harry to do what was necessary, as he was more experienced in the matters of Sight-induced maladies.
Draco stood back as Harry placed Snape on one of the hospital beds, examining the Potions Master's vital signs, assessing the situation. He remembered when, last year, a Seer, and a powerful one at that, had been visiting the school and Dumbledore, and had collapsed in the Great Hall after a glimpse of Potter. The Gryffindor had rushed to the Seer's side, just as she had woken up. That day, her whispered words had echoed through the Hall. "Dragonborn, you have a difficult trial in the near future. The time has almost come. You have such a beautiful aura..." After, she had fainted. When McGonagall had tried to levitate the Seer to the hospital wing, despite Potter's protests, the magic had sent the Seer into a coma. She hadn't woken up for nearly a month. Potter had taken care of her, without the use of magic.
Finished, Harry sighed, a small smile of relief softening his warm features. He glanced at Draco, beckoning him closer. "He'll be alright, for now. He should wake up in a few hours."
"Thank you, Harry. Good afternoon, Mr. Malfoy." Dumbledore stood in the doorway of the infirmary, looking solemn, the usual, damnable twinkle gone from his blue eyes.
"Harry, what did the prophecy say?"
Harry stood from his seat at Snape's side. "The sum of Professor Snape's spoken prophecy tells of the coming of the Dragon Lord, the only one who can restore the balance. Describes him, too. I'm sure Hermione can provide you with a copy of the prophecy. I need to look after the Professor. Sir." Harry turned his back on the Headmaster, clearly indicating that the conversation was over. The headmaster nodded.
"Very well." Then, the old wizard was gone.
Draco had watched the exchange with a slight wariness. "What was that about?"
"I don't trust him. I haven't since my godfather died. That man just keeps too much information from me. Draco, you know Snape better than anyone else here; has this ever happened before?" He was asking about the vision and the prophecy.
The blond shook his head. "No. He's never had the slightest inclination in Divination. I don't know what could have happened."
Harry sat down heavily in a chair. "Well, it was definitely a genuine prophecy, but just who was it speaking of? Who is this Dragon Lord and is he supposed to destroy Voldemort?"
"Maybe." Draco shrugged, but Harry ran a hand through his hair, confusion glittering in his eyes.
"If it's that way, then I'm doomed to die by Voldemort's hand before the war is over." He glanced at Draco, seeing the unspoken question. "It's part of a prophecy told just before I was born, concerning me and Voldemort. It's kill or be killed, basically. But if this Dragon Lord is supposed to destroy Moldie-Voldie, then that means I'll die before the year is out. Great." Draco said nothing as Harry brooded in silence. After a moment, the Gryffindor's face lit up as a thought struck him. "Unless..."
"Unless there are two prophecies about you. The gods must really love you, Potter."
"Thanks, Draco. Really." Harry turned in his seat and watched as Snape slept, a thoughtful expression on his face. "He better wake up soon."
Draco was mystified. "Why do you even care?"
"I respect our esteemed Potions Master. He's saved my life on numerous occasions, and I think he is the only person who doesn't treat me like I'm a hero. He's honest with me, and that's all I want from anyone."
Draco nodded and they lapsed into silence. Harry started to doze off, his head falling forward a little and his eyes drooping shut. With a sigh, Draco pulled a chair to Snape's bedside, taking the professor's hand in his own and with a foul mood brewing; he waited for his lover to wake up.
A small, nearly imperceptible moan woke Harry a few hours later. Looking around, he found Draco fast asleep, clutching Snape's hand. The moan had come from the Potions Master. He shook the blond Slytherin awake.
"I think he's waking up." He said before the blond could ask, before he turned his attention to Snape. The man's eyes were starting to flicker open.
"Professor? Professor Snape, wake up. Can you remember anything? Tell me anything."
"Where am I? What..." Snape focused slowly on Draco, and to Harry's surprise, he smiled at the other Slytherin.
"Draco..." he said quietly before he noticed Harry sitting beside his blond Slytherin. His black eyes went ice cold and his features, momentarily softened, turned to stone. "Potter."
Harry nodded. "Professor, you suffered from a vision this morning, and there was a Prophecy involved. Do you remember?"
Snape stared at him in confusion for a moment before he recalled the events of the morning. "I remember, all but the Prophecy itself. What did I say?"
And so Draco quoted the Prophecy word for word. "Do you know what it means, sir?" he asked when finished. "The balance being restored and of a great battle as well. You don't remember anything about it, or what it means?"
The Potions Master shook his head. "No. Why are you here?"
"Because we are," Harry said with a small smirk. "Draco helped me to bring you here. Professor, I would advise that you take it easy for a few days; prophecies drain a wizard's lifeforce, and you also suffered from a vision. I need to ask; what did you see in the Vision, sir?"
"I won't discuss my Vision with you, Potter."
"Well, get this through your thick head; I want to save my own skin, and I can't do that unless I know what you saw. Your prophecy said the Dragon Lord will battle with the Lord of Darkness, three guesses who that could be, and the first two don't count, meaning that I will die very soon. Most likely before I have a chance to graduate. I would prefer to do that before I die, but no, I'm too bloody selfish for thinking it! Either way, I will find a way to prevent my death, because I cannot be this Dragon Lord, and Voldemort is my enemy. Tell me what you saw, Professor. I want to live long enough to see Voldemort destroyed, and I can't do that if you don't tell me." Harry's emerald green eyes flashed with anger, a fury that made Snape want to flinch away.
"Please, Severus, just tell him what you saw. I trust him enough to know what he's doing." Draco said, surprising both Harry and Snape. After a moment, the Head of Slytherin nodded.
"Fine. I've spent nearly seven years protecting your life, and I won't have those years wasted. I'll tell you about my vision," Snape said, leaning back against the pillows. "It was distorted, only flashes of events. Fire was everywhere and great black dragons flew across a burning sky. Ruins, the dead were everywhere, and all around, there was fighting. I saw a measuring scale, unbalanced, and in a huge battlefield, a war was being waged, with two giant pillars rising from the battle itself, one pillar shining brilliantly with the light of the sun, but the other swallows, devours the light. A crimson-crested black Basilisk joins with the pillar of light, as does a silver dragon, no more than a hatchling," Snap's eyes started to glaze over as he remembered his vision. Harry glanced around, subtly casting a silencing charm around the bed, and another spell to warn him if anyone approached. Snape continued. "There was a boy, young and small, with crimson eyes and a scar. Two wizards stand behind the boy, both tall with black hair. They could be twins, but are not. The only thing I saw of them were their eyes; one pair crimson red, the other emerald green. Dragons flew around them, screaming with joy. Then the Darkness came an I know no more." The Potions Master sighed, exhausted.
"I don't know what it means. My prophecy, what exactly did I say?" Snape looked from Draco to Harry.
And so Harry told him. The older wizard stopped him halfway through, a thoughtful expression crossing his features as he pondered over the words of his prophecy.
"Blood of the Dragon, Son of the Stag... these words describes the Dragon Lord, right? Who could it be?" Snape wondered, his mind going a hundred miles per second.
"Professor, we can solve the riddles of your prophecy later; right now you need to rest," Harry said. "And professor, please don't tell Dumbledore about your vision. The Dragon Lord shouldn't be his weapon, like I am." Harry stood and left the Infirmary, leaving the two Slytherins alone.
As the door closed shut, Draco gathered his lover in his arms, his embrace fierce. He showered light kisses all over the Potions Master's face.
"Oh, Severus, I was so worried! Please, don't ever do that to me again!"
Snape smiled. "It's not like I could help it, love. Power chooses it's tool, and I have been made into such a tool. Draco, love, there is something that I didn't tell Potter." His smile faded and the blond became apprehensive.
"What is it?"
"I saw two wizards in the pillar of light, and again behind the little boy. I got the feeling that these two were lovers. You mustn't breathe a word of this to anyone, especially Potter." The Potions Master leaned in close and whispered in Draco's ear. The blond stared at Snape with wide eyes, his mouth agape.
"You're serious, right?" Snape just nodded.
"What are we going to do?"
"For now, nothing. This must stay between us until I can figure everything out."
Draco nodded. "Ok, but if what you saw is true, then who is the Lord of Darkness?"
"I don't know, Draco. This makes my task that much more difficult, but I think our main goal should be identifying the Dragon Lord, but not here," he smiled a little at his young lover. "Would you care to join me in my chambers? I could use a little help on the way down, still being pretty weak and all that rot." He gave Draco a gentle smile, which his younger lover returned.
"I was thinking along the same lines, my dear professor." Draco said smugly, helping Snape to his feet. After a few minutes, they were gone from the hospital wing.
That night, Harry lay in bed well past midnight, unable to sleep. The tale of Snape and his prophecy had spread throughout the school at an alarming rate, and Ron had been furious that Harry had helped the older wizard. When Harry returned to Gryffindor Tower earlier in the evening, the redhead had yelled and raged, howled and rampaged, and had even accused Harry of conspiring with the Slytherins. About what, Harry couldn't even begin to guess, but Hermione had jumped to his defense, to his relief.
He couldn't get his mind off the prophecy. Curiosity ate at him, giving him no peace. Just who was this Dragon Lord? He thought back to what Draco had that morning, in jest, about there being two prophecies about him. In Harry's mind, it was impossible. If two prophecies spoke of him, they contradicted one another. One prophecy said that he would kill the Dark Lord or be killed, and the other said the Dragon Lord would destroy the Lord of Darkness, restoring the balance, and Harry had the distinct feeling that Voldemort wasn't the Lord of Darkness told of in Snape's prophecy.
With a sigh, Harry closed his eyes for a moment. Opening them, he found that his surroundings had changed. Harry groaned in dismay.
"Oh, fuck. What now?" Standing up, Harry walked through a corridor, following his instincts. He knew he was in Riddle Manor by means of a vision, or a dream, and it felt as though Voldemort was waiting for him. He sensed no malevolence from the Dark Lord, and he knew he could leave the dream if Voldemort meant to harm him.
Pushing open the doors leading into the library, Harry realized that Voldemort was, indeed, waiting for him. Sitting in an armchair beside a blazing fir was Voldemort, watching him with those enchanting crimson eyes. His appearance had changed since Harry's fifth year; no longer was Voldemort ghostly pale and scaly. Thick black hair now covered his once-bald head, slightly messy, and the Dark Lord actually looked human, and devastatingly handsome as well.
For a moment, Harry was taken aback by Voldemort's beauty, but he smothered that thought in an instant.
"Harry Potter," even his voice had changed. "Welcome to my dream."
"What do you want, Voldemort?"
"Straight to the point, I see. Very well. This morning, I felt some very strange magic through Severus's Dark Mark. The thing is, I, myself, have felt this strange magic, not twenty minutes ago. Did my once-faithful Deatheater suffer from a vision today?" The Dark Lord asked, string at Harry with eyes that shone with power.
"Why should I say one word to you, Voldemort? Why the hell are you asking me of all people?"
"Come and sit down, Potter, and I will tell you. I won't bite." Voldemort indicated the armchair across from him. Harry hesitated for only a moment, his curiosity getting the better of him.
"Good. I had a vision earlier, Potter. One that makes our Prophecy all but useless, and an impossibility. In my vision, fire was everywhere; there was no escaping it. In the burning sky above, black dragons fought with immense shadow spawn. All was in ruins, and everywhere you looked, battles were being fought by wizard and creature alike. A set of scales was unbalanced and on a battlefield, two pillars stood. One shone with the intensity of the sun's light, but the other swallowed the light, destroying it. A basilisk with a crimson crest fought for the pillar of light. Two wizards stand side by side with clasped hands, their features mostly undistinguishable, with only their eyes visible through the shadows..."
"Crimson red and emerald green." Harry finished. Voldemort raised a slender black eyebrow, nodding. "Snape didn't have just a vision, he also told a prophecy. His vision was almost identical to your own." Harry then told Voldemort the prophecy, not really knowing why, but he felt that he could trust Voldemort with this.
As he finished, Voldemort rose from his chair. He closed the distance between them before Harry could do anything. Kneeling in front of Harry, he gently caressed the raven-haired teen's face, causing him to stiffen slightly.
"You know that there is a truth that you don't wish to face, but you cannot afford that luxury. I am not this Lord of Darkness, but you are the Dragon Lord. The only reason I ever feared the Potter line was because of the Dragon blood that flows through your veins. Thousands of years ago, a highly skilled metamorphmagus mated with the last great black dragon, and she forever altered her line with the dragon's blood that now thrived in her children; your ancestors. Son of the Stag; I seem to recall that your father was an illegal Animagus, and that his creature was a stag. And only with the mind of a Slytherin, a serpent, and the heart of a Gryffindor, a lion, were you able to defeat me so many times. By giving you this scar," He lightly traced the scar on Harry's forehead. "I have marked you with Death. You are the Dragon Lord from Severus's prophecy." Voldemort pulled back slightly, his crimson eyes gleaming with an emotion Harry couldn't identify.
"Why are you telling me this?" Harry asked softly.
"Because my place is at your side. The basilisk in my vision was me in my Animagus form. We are no longer enemies, Potter. Yes, I have made a great deal of mistakes in my past, but when I started my campaign, the Dark was dying, and the balance was unsettled, leaving no room for peace. But I became corrupted by my power, and I lost sight of my goal, and I began to relish in the pain and the killing that I was causing. Now I know my mistakes and failures, because of you, and I am willing to atone for them in any way that I can, if you'll let me."
Looking deep into Voldemort's eyes, gazing into the crimson depths, Harry felt like he was staring into the Dark Lord's very soul. He searched his enemy for any sign of deception, but found none.
"If you're playing me for a fool, then I will kill you. If you are truly sincere, as you seem to be, then do what you will." Harry said, his voice low with threat. Voldemort nodded.
"Then I thank you, Potter. Now, before I let you go from my dream, I have something for you." Before Harry could say or do anything, Voldemort leaned in suddenly and placed a soft, chaste kiss on Harry's lips, slipping something's in his hand as he did so.
Harry sat up in bed, his breathing hard, and his heart racing. The vision was over. With a sigh, he looked at the clock that stood on his bedside table and groaned. The clock read 5:23 am.
"Oh shit." He remembered the dream, and Voldemort's kiss. "Oh, god no! What just happened?" Knowing he wouldn't get any more sleep, Harry got out of bed, heading for the showers. Once he was standing beneath the hot water, he closed his eyes, trying to clear his mind.
"Shit. I'm doomed." After he had finished with his shower, and had gotten dressed, he returned to his bed, to get his wand. Harry noticed something in his sheets, glowing, and picking it up, Harry realized it was a large silver ring, forged in the shape of two dragons. One had tiny rubies for eyes, and the other had emeralds. It was very old.
"So this is what he gave me," He said softly. Acting on impulse, Harry found a silver chain, and looping it through the ring, he clasped it around his neck. Grabbing his book bag, he left his roommates to sleep peacefully.
No one found him until the first class, Potions, started. Hermione was surprised to see him in his customary seat when she walked in. she came over to him.
"Harry, are you alright? Neville said you'd already gone this morning." She said, putting her books down on the desk behind him.
"Yeah, I just didn't get a lot of sleep last night, that's all."
She got that worried look. "Did you have a nightmare?"
"A vision, then?"
"Sort of. It was... really strange."
She paused. "Harry, where did you get that ring? It's beautiful." Harry fingered it, lingering on Voldemort's kiss from the night before. "It came from the vision, but don't worry, Hermione, I know what I'm doing. You should probably go sit down before Snape gets pissed off." Hermione nodded, still worried about him, but she relented. Snape stormed into the classroom seconds after she sat down.
"I will be pairing you off for today's potion. Yu know who your partner is, so get to it. The potion you'll be brewing today is called the Draconis Draught, and when used in war, the Draconis Draught temporarily transforms its drinker into vicious dragons. Today, however, with a small harmless ingredient change, you lot will only transform into miniature version of your inner dragon. Get to work. Page 214 of your texts." He sat down at his desk and began grading a pile of essays with his famous red ink.
Draco came over and settled into the seat beside Harry. They had been partners for two years now. As they started on the potion, they worked in silence, until Draco noticed the ring from where it hung from around Harry's neck.
"Nice ring, Potter. Where'd it come from?"
Harry smirked as he continued to chop up the boomslang skin. "Think of the one wizard who normally wants my head on a silver platter," he said in a low tone so that only Draco could hear him. "He gave it to me last night in a dream. Said some weird shit too, but not once do he try to hurt me."
Draco paused. "Does this have anything to do with yesterday?" he asked, his tone a little nervous and Harry nodded. "Tell Snape then. Its his prophecy, so he should know about it."
"I'll think about it."
They finished the potion in silence and as the rest of the class finished up, Snape stood from his desk to prowl amidst the steaming cauldrons. Two he dismissed completely as failures, and three others he deemed as nearly correct, before approaching Harry's simmering cauldron.
"This is excellent work for once, Mr. Potter. Well done, Draco. You two will test your potion, and now." He said gruffly. It was obvious that he wasn't in the best of moods. With a glance at one another, Harry and Draco filled a beaker each, and as one, downed their Draconis potion.
Instantly, Draco was a miniature silver dragon, flying serenely around the dungeon. Harry, however, didn't change. Much. His emerald eyes became serpentine, and black dragon wings ripped through his clothes and flesh painfully, bringing him to his knees. Scales hardened from his skin, curving the outside of his eyes, forming something akin to a strange crown. Unnoticed, the jewels in his ring glowed fiercely.
Changed, Harry stood, panting for breath. Snape stood nearby, staring at him, as were the rest of the students. The tiny silver dragon that was Draco flew over to perch on Harry's shoulder, gripping the front of Harry's robes with his tiny silver claws.
"Potter, what just happened?"
"I don't know, sir, but I do know someone who might. I'd like to speak with you, sir. Immediately." Harry said, and nodding, Snape ordered the other students to pack up and leave. The moment the other students were gone, the Potions Master locked the door and cast a Silencing spell over the room with a wave of his wand.
Turning back to Harry, he gave a weary sigh. "Why can't I have one normal year where nothing strange happens, Potter? And it always has something to do with you. Now, what did you want to speak to me about"
And so, Harry told the Potions Master everything about his vision from the night before... well, almost everything. He didn't mention the kiss. He didn't dare mention the kiss. At Snape's request, he removed the ring from where it hung around his neck and handed it to the professor.
"The Dark Lord gave this to you and told you that you are the Dragon Lord from my Prophecy? He, too, had a vision?" he asked.
"Almost identical to your own, sir." Harry said.
"Well, then I would have to say that the Dark Lord is, indeed, correct. Only dragon blood could have affected the Draconis Potion in this manner. You are the Dragon Lord."
The silver dragon that was Draco leapt from Harry's shoulder, and a moment later, he was human again. Catching sight of Harry, wings and all, the Slytherin stared.
"Professor, I assume that we've just found the Dragon Lord. What the fuck do we do now?"