Title: Unseen Threads
Overview: Harry's seeing and hearing things he's not supposed to, and the unseen consequences could be higher then anyone expected.
SLASH! Guy/Guys! If you no likee, you no readee.
Chapter One - Connected
I guess it all really started about a week into summer vacation. Ever since Sirius died I replayed the memory of his… death… in my dreams, the hot nights keeping me awake for hours on end. I sometimes thought I saw him walking in the park or at the corner store, but I was always wrong. This never added up to anything, at least not until the day Ron and his family came to pick me up and whisk me away from the Dursley's. The only reason Dumbledore still wanted me back there at 4 Privet Drive was to make sure any protection that came from my aunt stayed with me, and a week seemed a nice round number to stay. So, back to my story.
"So Harry, we're all here! I forgot to add it in my letter to you but we're making the run to Diagon Alley today so all your stuff will… Harry? Helloooooo?"
Ron was being overly cheery for my benefit and I managed a fake smile to please him. The truth was that ever since Sirius died I'd been kind of numb. Stuff that should make me angry, sad, happy or scared just couldn't do it anymore. Only when I thought I saw Sirius was I remotely happy, followed by a few hours of deep depression before sinking back into the familiar numbness. Ron waved a hand across my face but I continued to stare distractedly into the green Ministry car parked on the street. He even stepped in front of me to obstruct my view but this only caused me to crane my neck around Ron.
"Uh…. Harry? Something wrong?" He was completely puzzled and I knew better then to keep him in the dark about anything, it only set to piss him off.
"Who's that in the car?" A man I'd never seen before sat in the back seat beside Fred and George who were talking amongst themselves. No-one paid him any attention or talked with him; he just sat there in a crisp dark grey suit and stared out the window. At me.
Now some people would just walk up to the car and ask later about who he was but not me. I have lived through too much to simply let anything out of the ordinary to slip by. Anything a little off, a little weird was alarm in my mind, and this guy set it off pretty badly.
"Who mate? That's just my family, you know, the people I live with? And some Order members are there too but you can't see them because of the charmed windows." He was peering into the car now as well, not sure of who I was talking about.
"That man you idiot, the one staring at me right now, beside Fred! Who's he, he's really creepy." It was true; even if this was some distant cousin of Ron they bared no familial resemblance at all. He had short black hair and a clean cut face, but I couldn't quite make out his eye color through the window. Kinda creepy.
"Harry, there's no-one there." Ron turned slowly back towards me now, a look of confusion and concern on his face. "There is no-one there Harry, I swear."
Now he gave me a skeptical look, andI felt a wave of deja-vue like this had already happened. In essence it had. The first day back during 5th year we had a nearly identical conversation about the thestrals attached to the carriages, but I silently prayed this wasn't another 'omen of death'. I get enough of those from Trelawney, thank you.
So, I did what I naturally do. I lied.
"OH, it's Bill back there! I really need a new prescription mate; do they sell glasses in Diagon Alley, by any chance?" I tried to remain normal and cheerful, as though that was all a big misunderstanding. Ron gave me a half smile and bent down to help me carry my trunk down the front steps.
"Yeah, sure. They do I think, we'll ask Dad." He was obviously skeptical but I remained impassive, pretending the man wasn't there. Which was difficult at best.
You see, since the beginning of this year's summer we have had NO breaks in the heat. I was wearing jeans and a thin red t-shirt. A couple skirts and shorts mixed in, but anything more equaled your sure ticket to heat exhaustion within minutes. This man however was in a full suit and tie but hadn't broken a sweat. It wasn't right; there was something off about the entire situation.
Anyways, we reached the car and I stalled for some time by going round to the boot with Ron to chuck my trunk in. As soon as this was done the inevitable happened. Mr. Weasley exited the car from the front driver side and went to the back to greet me.
"Harry! So glad to see you, I hope you are feeling better. Molly had a right fit about you being here at the Dursleys'. She's already at Diagon Alley doing some shopping with a friend of hers." I smiled a little at him as well, trying to appear recovered and happy. At least a little bit.
"No sir, I'm really doing fine thank you." He smiled back and proceeded to open the door for Ron and I. The exact door that the man was sitting beside.
I hesitated, scared to enter the car beside him. "Well come on then, we haven't all day!" He grinned again and ran back to the front of the car and jumped in. Ron was watching me for a reaction, I could feel his eyes on my side.
"You ok mate?" he was watching me but my eyes were quite busy. I stared into the mans eyes, and he stared back.
Only there weren't any.
Not like he didn't have eyes it was just that… they were white. They had no middles, no iris, and no pupils. Just white. This was enough to stop me in my tracks but what he next did actually chilled me to the bone. He smiled. Not a friendly smile, I twisted one, the kind Voldemort should be famous for. Then he stepped out onto the pavement right in front of an openmouthed Ron, slammed the door shut and winked.
Now the next chain of events wasn't typical. Ron stepped back as though burned onto the sidewalk, his blue eyes wide with fear and awe at me and the door. The man, he just turned and walked away, down the street. I could hear every click of the heels of his shoes, the swish of the fabric of his pants. Everything. But Ron wasn't staring at the man now, he was staring at me.
"How? How did you do that?" He was gaping at me now, jaw still dropped.
"Do what? Didn't you see that? The man?" I was amazed at how, how, Ron hadn't seen him, felt his presence even. He had been right in front of him!
"You! You just stared at the door and it slammed shut! Then you looked away and… when did you learn to do that?"
"I didn't, aren't you listening to me? That man did it; he's walking down the street! Can't you see him; feel he's here or something?" I hissed at Ron, on the verge of screaming at his complete stupidity. And sure enough, when I turned around the man was still walking away, hands in pockets.
I gave up on being discreet; the entire car was silent and tuned into my conversation with Ron. I ran down the street and turned to face the man.
"Who are you? Why are you here?" I was breathless and starting to sweat from running, but he was cool as an ice cube. And he just frowned at me this time, and walked away.
"DON'T WALK AWAY! WHAT ARE YOU?" I was screaming now, a small crowd of nosy neighbors peeking from windows and bushes to stare at me. They gave each other knowing looks but continued to pretend to prune the bushes or wash the dishes as if I simply wasn't there.
He turned looked at me sternly, and mouthed words I didn't understand, and then started walking away again. I was frustrated beyond belief, and exasperated at getting nothing from him. So I turned and walked past all the gaping neighbors, back to the car. Every Muggle on the street was ready to swear an oath that I was completely nutter and the crowd from the car wasn't far behind. Everyone was standing around it now, watching me walk back. A pile of frizzy red heads gaped at me; Hermione was with them as well, as were Tonks and Moody. I just took a seat in the back beside Ron and stared straight ahead.
"Can we uh, go now? Before the entire street mobs us or something. I'll, I'll…explain. Later. Just go." Mr. Weasley simply nodded at me and started to drive away, the rest of the car talking amongst themselves. The car was of course enchanted, so from the outside you could see through the front and back windows, as usual. Inside there were two added rows of windows and doors to exit and enter from, but from the outside it appeared to only have two.
"Harry? What exactly were you yelling about out there?" Moody was the only one with enough nerve to question me a few minutes later. Both of his eyes were fixed on me and even in the sweltering heat he was wearing full wizard's robes. Typical Moody.
"A man. A man was here, I need to tell Dumbledore. As soon as possible, if that's possible." Everyone else was silent but Hermione turned around a few minutes later and was the first to break it.
"Harry, no-one was there. We were all watching you." She was wearing a face of deep concern, trying desperately in her every perfect mind to find an answer to this. Her scrunched up face looked comical, the heat and humidity had gotten to her now super bushy hair. I couldn't find it in me to explode at her when she looked like that, and not in front of everyone else either.
I turned my face towards her, "When I saw what I thought was my father you said it wasn't real. Its turns out it was me. When I saw the thestrals you thought I was crazy. Turns out they're real too. Just because everyone else doesn't see it doesn't not make it real. It's just like…magic. Muggles can't see it or use it, but some of us know it's there." I was impressed by my own calm, considering the situation. This was a new feeling for me, this serenity instead of anger or hurt.
"Now Potter, can you describe what he looked like? This could be an omen or a warning perhaps…" Mad-Eye was watching me with both eyes now, as was everyone else in the cramped car.
"Yes, I took a coarse on this while becoming an Auror. Maybe we can figure it out!" Tonks was perpetually happy like a little wind up toy that just keeps going. She gave me a welcoming smile, her little heart shaped face now framed by a light blonde pixie cut.
"Well… It's more than a little creepy. Sorry if this haunts your dreams or something but…" I turned my eyes to Ginny and continued, "It was just a man. Normal, dark grey suit, black tie, but he wasn't sweating or anything though. But his eyes were white; there was no middle part…" I launched into a detailed retelling of the past few minutes happenings and was received in the end be a thoughtful silence.
"I believe," started Mr. Weasley, licked his parched lips and slowly weighing each word before speaking it, "that we should continue with our plan for Diagon Alley and tell Dumbledore as soon as possible. As soon as we arrive I think Tonks should alert him with a report of the situation. Then we can decide what needs to be done. But for now, I think it best not to overreact, but to spend a nice day together. Everyone agreed?"
Everyone, more or less, nodded their agreement at this idea. Hermione didn't seem too pleased at this, probably wanted to go to Dumbledore right that moment and itching for a copy of Human Omens and How to Interpret them, but she remained silent for the rest of the ride.
Diagon Alley wasn't nearly as packed as when I was normally there during the school rush. The streets shimmered with the constant heat and held tiny vendors with shacks full of interesting things instead of being filled to the brim with school children and their bustling parents. After a quick stop in Gringotts bank I set out with Ron and Hermione.
"Harry, I'm really sorry you had to see that. I would have lost my head and screamed bloody murder or something. No eyes? I mean, that's really out there…" Hermione trailed off, sharing a deep look with Ron.
I HATE it when they do that about me, like they both know so much about what I'm thinking. At least I used to hate it; now I kind of don't really care.
"It's not that bad really, I've seen worse. I guess I'm sort of, desensitized? I can see stuff now that bothers normal people but I just don't… care." As soon as the words left my mouth I regretted them. They made me sound like some poor lost soul, like a charity case that had been through so much. I didn't want pity, I wanted…
"Listen, we get it. You can talk about if you need to, but you don't have to explain yourself to us." I love Ron, I truly do. He's just gets me sometimes, and at times like those I really feel terrible about all the yelling and snide comments I make to him and Hermione.
So, we spent the day nicely, wandering through the vendors and buying our school supplies (Dumbledore had given us advanced lists for some reason) as we went along. A silent agreement had been signed by all of us to not bring up the man or anything else traumatizing in my life. And I must admit, for one afternoon it was really a pleasant change. Then my afternoon altered again. For the worse, of course.
Ron and Hermione were bent low over a table, laughing at some spinning trinket or another. It sparked something happy inside me to see them so happy, so oblivious to all the bad things around us.
And there was the man, bright as day. Only he was real now, more real then before at least. He had dark blue eyes, startling blue. His skin wasn't as pale as before, a little sweat glistened on his brow and his hair was more windblown and natural looking. He was laughing too, a hearty laugh with another business man. He hadn't made a sound before; he had just smiled and winked. He seemed a little out of place in a suit during this weather but some wizards were still wearing thin cloaks, like the man he was laughing with.
The other man had shining blond hair, and his cold laugh I recognized immediately. It was Lucious Malfoy.
I was stunned. For one, Lucious Malfoy had been sent to Azkaban, along with Crabbe and Goyle's fathers. He shouldn't be here; he shouldn't be out and about at all. And the other man, the one from the car? Had it been a premonition to our meeting, was this an omen of some kind? Could I see the future?
Draco was standing behind both of them, in the shadows. He eyed me and smirked, as though reading my mind about the thoughts of his Father being out in public. His lip was split straight down the middle, no doubt a full cock-and-bull story about how he had won a fight barehanded to get that thing. Her noticed me but didn't move from leaning against the wall, or notify his father. He just smirked, as though thoroughly enjoying the look on my face.
And then the oddest thing happened. I was so numb; I felt nothing about the situation. I didn't register as hot or cold, or happy or sad. I just overloaded on thoughts and feelings I guess, because I no longer cared. I watched as the two men said their good byes, and then the man, the man from the car turned to see me. He only flicked his eyes over me for a second, and then smiled. The evil, malicious twisted smile of before. Then he winked, just a tiny wink at me and started to walk away. But before he did, Draco ran over to him as I had an hour before.
"Will we being seeing you soon?" this was an out of the place question, but Draco asked it as though it had a hidden meaning. He kept his stormy grey eyes downcast, his head bowed a little. The man had stopped smiling now, he seemed angry about something.
"No, you most definitely will not. Goodbye Draco." The man was cool and efficient, sweeping past Draco smoothly and continuing up the street. But it just seemed a bit off. The whole encounter was stiff and stilted, as thought their words didn't mean what they meant at all but were a code. Draco returned towards his Father, continuing to keep his eyes downcast in shame, or anger, I really couldn't tell. But Lucious Malfoy waits for no-one and was already walking briskly away in the opposite direction.
"…Harry? Harry, you zoning out again mate? What are you…?" Ron had finally looked up from the trinket table with Hermione, but didn't even have time to finish his sentence.
I ran towards Draco full tilt, slamming into his side before he even knew what was happening.
"AVADA KADAVRA!" a low voice screamed from the shady alleyway which Draco had moments before been leaning near, but I didn't see anything. I reacted on instinct, without a second thought. I could almost feel a wind at my back and simply knew that the curse had barely missed me. Screams rang out up and down the street, people were running, tripping over each other and cursing all around. I kept my head down until I heard the thud.
"HARRY! HARRY!" Ron's voice pierced my thoughts but I kept my head down and stuffed into the body below me. Tears were already streaming down my face. I knew what had happened. I didn't need to see it to know, I just did.
Ron's strong arms pulled me up off of Malfoy but I slumped into a sitting position. A woman lay dead in the street only meters away, meters behind me and Malfoy. I wish I were dead, I wish none of this had happened.
"Harry, snap out of it! Can you see me? Can you hear-?"
"Of course I can hear you. I just don't feel like talking. I knew it would happen like that, I knew it was coming. I just… Malfoy? Malfoy?" I didn't mean to snap at Ron but I couldn't help it.
I had pushed Draco down only moments before the curse would have hit him and he was evidently still stunned. His blonde hair was wildly shaken about his head and his grey eyes were wide with shock. He stared into my eyes for a minute or maybe hours, I couldn't tell. He still didn't know what I had pushed him down for, he still couldn't tell what had happened around him. But his eyes weren't their usual angry selves, they were pleading. Like he didn't want me to beat him or overpower him; like he wanted my help. But he was up with a shot and a sneer, it nestled itself quickly onto his face. He still hadn't seen the body; I had covered him so that it was behind me.
"What the flying FUCK was that about Potter? I didn't even do anything to you! Trying to get me ki-"
"HE JUST SAVED YOUR WORTHLESS LIFE YOU LOWLY PIECE OF SHIT!" Ron screamed bloody murder at Draco's face and caused even his eyes to widen with fright. Ron bore down over Draco while standing over him by some inches but physical looks weren't the only dangerous weapons he had. Had looks been able to kill Draco wouldn't have even been able to been saved by myself, Dumbledore or Voldemort himself.
Draco was standing up, I could feel him beside me; his Father came into view again but I just sat at his feet. I could see him yelling; see Ron screaming at Draco and Draco screaming back. Hermione was desperately trying to hold Ron back from strangling Draco while Draco's own Father couldn't even be much bothered about the health of his son. I couldn't hear them though, I didn't want to. I wanted to see the woman. I needed to see the woman I killed.
The crowds were completely frenzied by now, yelling and screaming and crying all mingles together in the sticky air. Nothing in particular came through however; I tried desperately to peer through the crowds legs at the woman. I tried to analyze her on the ground, not listening to Ron and Draco anymore. She was facedown on the pavement and her leg was bent a little funny underneath her. A group of witches and wizards around her were trying to turn her over and cover her up properly; a vendor from a little ways down brought out a white lace tablecloth to cover the body, but for a moment I saw it. The woman was in her forties or fifties, light red hair with some grey streaks in it as well. Her face was still in shock, the mouth a little open and the eyes wide. They thankfully didn't seem scared though, just a little startled.
It was the face that had given me so much comfort for so many years, the face I recognized instantly and nearly as fast regretted looking at.
It was the face of Mrs. Weasley.
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