A/N: Yeah, it's been a while, I know. But here's something to tide you over until the next chapter of my long piece. You know, Dark Fortress…yeah, I'm going to finish it. HBP didn't make me want to quit, though now I'm half-obsessed about the fourth movie coming out in November…exciting! Anyway, here's a one-shot…btw, it's based off a scene in a Harry-Snape bonding fic, just to give you a tantalizing taste of that story, which SHOULD be up someday…if I'm not bogged down in classes or asleep.
So enjoy, please, and give me your comments.
Summary: He took the evil out. Enough said.
Title: Did Nothing
"I—I took the evil out," I hear the faint voice of the boy.
I turn away from what is left of Voldemort.
A corpse, lying spread-eagle on bloody and torn up ground.
"Potter," I say curtly, moving towards the boy. "You were told not to leave, not to pursue him on your own!"
The boy is facing away from me, lying on his side. From what I can see, he seems to be in one piece. Somehow, he has survived this duel…more than survived, he has won.
"Sor…ry," the boy says, of course not really meaning it.
"Just be quiet and listen to me, Potter!" I snap. "Albus has been searching for you for days, Potter, and none of us have slept since you left!" I snap, trying to get him to understand how irritated I am by his lack of obedience.
But the Dark Lord is dead, mocking my words.
The boy does not have a response—he just coughs heavily.
Something is very wrong with the boy.
And then I see it.
Seeping underneath the teen's body, darkening the ground and spreading rapidly.
Too much blood.
I'm at his side in an instant, kneeling on the bloody ground and rolling him to his back.
Blood, blood everywhere, on everything.
Bleary eyes in a pale face stare up at me.
The attempted word comes out in a gasp that momentarily increases the amount of blood pouring from the boy.
"Be quiet!" I mutter again, "You're making it worse!"
There is a deep gash across his torso, from shoulder to hip, and blood is pulsing from it with every beat of his heart.
I raise my wand to use what healing spells I know…but there is nothing strong enough, and I know it without even trying. Nothing will heal a wound such as this…nothing I have with me.
My magic is almost exhausted as it is—it took a great deal of energy to break through the heavy shield erected around this barren patch of ground…a last remnant of the battle that took place here not more than fifteen minutes ago.
I have no strength left, no spells and no potions that can save the boy.
And yet I try. I dig through my robes, pulling out every potion I have with me, searching for something that will help the boy.
I pick one vial, tipping it into the boy's mouth. It won't help him, but it's all I have.
"C—cold," the boy whispers. "Co…old."
"Be quiet!" I mutter again, as I have now twice before. "The more you speak, the more you hurt yourself!"
Or is it the more he speaks, the more I feel? Every word cuts at me…the words of a boy, much too young to being playing war, dying on the battlefield.
In the next bout of silence, I manage to slip two more potions into the teen, knowing that neither is what the boy really needs.
"S—" the boy tries to say again, but fails to form any words. Again.
"Hold still, Potter," I order, knowing the boy won't listen. "I've given you potions that may or may not save your life, and they need time to work."
My words are alarming, at best, but I have trouble lying to a dying man…boy…teenager. Which is what Potter has become.
"T—tell Ro—n—an'—'Mion—e," the boy gasps out finally, blatantly ignoring the order to stay still, "love them…"
I have to stop from rolling my eyes.
But then I realized that I could very well be listening to the boy's last words.
The last words of a sixteen year-old boy. The words of a boy who never had a chance, not really.
"Sorry…" the boy breathes out weakly, eyes glazing somewhat with pain and shock. "Tell Dumml—sorry."
"Tell him yourself, brat," I can't help but snap, trying to find some way to save the boy's rapidly-disappearing life. Potter smiles weakly, breath becoming shallow and more rapid.
"Sorry t' you too," Potter says, ignoring me. "'M a stupid Gryddif…"
Well. The first time the boy's admitted that he's a foolish Gryffindor, although it was coming out as 'Gryddifor.' Amazing that he can only admit it now, as he's dying…
The boy gasps differently. Panicked.
He knows now that he's dying.
His body tenses, going rigid with pain, and I wait, knowing either that Potter is experiencing his last moments on earth or that the potions are finally beginning to work.
Forgiven your arguing and fighting and…living. Forgiven for the anger and the love and the sorrow…the impulsive decision that has put you here, that has now claimed your life.
And the life of Tom Riddle.
The words are out of me in a moment of doubt, in that moment when Potter's green eyes lock with mine, utter clarity in their depths.
And blood keeps spilling from the boy, and he keeps gasping weakly.
The potions are not working. There is going to be no last minute recovery.
There will be no miracle, no bouncing back. No rescue.
Potter's last remaining moments. It is odd that I should be the one with him at this moment, not Albus, nor his friends.
Me. The one Order member that does not like him, nor pander to him in any way.
Admittedly, I do know he is not the spoiled brat I long imagined him to be.
After a curious visit involving myself, the Dursley family, and a spell meant for livestock, I cannot nurture my belief that the boy is spoiled or arrogant.
Odd incident, that, I remember for a moment.
But he is foolish, rash, and stubborn…as evidenced by his present situation.
Of course, the Dark Lord lies dead not five feet from me. The boy did what he said he would do. It's finished…
Potter has managed a small smile at my words, tears filling his dilated eyes. "I'm…fo…or…gi…" he gasps, sounding as if I have given him a blessing from above.
"Dammit, Potter," I growl, knowing that I have no way to help him—I am sapped of my magic, exhausted. I cannot Apparate with him—I would splinch us both, if we even managed to leave this place.
The boy keeps hanging onto life, though. He refuses to quietly die.
"Dad?" the boy asks suddenly, deep surprise in his voice.
I look around, startled, but the boy is looking at me. Green eyes locked on my face, hope in their depths. "Potter…" I start to say, but then I see the blood bubbling up, seeping from the boy's mouth and spilling down his chin.
The boy is so close to death…and yet he is. Still. Alive.
"Your father will be here soon," I say softly. My throat hurts, somehow painful and numb at the same time. "As will your mother."
"Mis…sed…s—muc…ch…" Potter breathes out.
He has used his last breath, it seems. More deep, dark blood spills from his half-open mouth, and I watch as the blood pulsing from the deep wound across his body slows, the beats becoming shallower and slower.
And as his life slips away, he looks up at me, green irises almost overtaken by his dilated pupils.
And now that the moment has come, I suddenly realize that this was the last thing I wanted. A boy of sixteen is dying in front of me…dead…and I live on…
Life's irony never ceases to amaze me.
His grip on my hand suddenly disappears, and I know that he is gone.
When did I take his hand up? When did I offer him that small comfort, that small token of care?
I am still for some time…I do not know how long. As pathetic as it is, it takes me that long to just gather up the courage to once again look up at the boy's face and see that he is really gone.
I reach a hand forward, noticing only now how my body is shaking.
Fatigue. Nothing more.
The boy's eyes close easily under my hand, and I pull away, standing abruptly. There is nothing left to be done here, nothing.
In a sudden movement I turn away and step towards the other…corpse…lying just ten feet away.
I expect the Dark Lord to look much the same as when I last saw him—more serpent than man, eyes red and filled with malice.
But instead piercing brown eyes gaze up at the blue sky, placed in a striking face that could belong to any fifty year-old wizard. Brown hair frames the dead Tom Riddle's face, giving him a much different appearance.
I took the evil out.
Potter's words come back to me. His last coherent sentence.
I took the evil out.
And it killed them both. It must have been so much evil, so much darkness and anger and rage…too much.
He is clearly dead, though, and I turn away from him as well.
Potter's body lies like a broken doll, as if he had never moved or spoken. As if I had not knelt there and helplessly watched his life slip away.
I can do nothing more here.
Not that I have done anything in the first place.
Slowly, wearily, I begin the long walk back.
A/N: Hmm. Tell me what you think, please. The more I hear from you, the harder I'll be pushed to work on getting that chapter up for y'all.