Chapter 21: The Battle Begins
Sirius Black quickly and quietly entered Voldemort's stronghold. He had to get Harry out of there. The longer he remained, the more that his life was in danger. If Voldemort ever learned the prophecy, he wouldn't hesitate to kill Harry. He stealthily walked through the halls of the enormous building. Where was he going to find Harry? He needed to as soon as possible. Dumbledore was supposed to send him a signal to let him know if he found out where Harry was being held. He stopped suddenly stopped when he heard voices coming around the corner.
"When is the Dark Lord going to complete his plans with Potter?" asked the Death Eater. His companion waited before he said anything.
" I don't know. I think he's waiting for our other guests to arrive."
" What other guests?
" Sirius Black and the girl." The first Death Eater looked up in surprise. " What girl?"
" The one that the Dark Lord says is his sister. I believe they said that her name was Anne." Sirius paled at these words. What did they want with him and Anne? He needed to find Dumbledore now. Anne was in danger. With that last thought he ran in the direction that he knew Dumbledore had gone.
Anne paced the room nervously as William and Sam watched her. What was taking them so long? They had been gone for over 2 hours and still no word. " Calm down Anne. They'll be here soon." Said Sam. Anne looked up at him with tears in her eyes.
"I can't. I'm so worried. What kind of sister am I when I am staying here while everyone else is gone rescuing Harry? How could I have not realized that Harry was missing? How could I have not known that a Death Eater had captured him? And how did I not know that Jennifer was one?" said Anne started to cry. Sam and William went to her and guided her to the chair by the fireplace. "Calm down Anne. None of us suspected Jennifer. She fooled us all." Said William.
"If they save Harry, what condition will he be in? They've had him for weeks doing god only knows what to him. What if they kill him? What will I do then?"
"Don't think like that Anne. They will save Harry. He will be fine. Just calm down and breathe. Think positively. Everything will work out." Said William. Anne just continued crying that she wasn't a good sister because she let Harry get taken.
Remus tensed up, eyes widening as he entered the room. Death Eaters were everywhere. They looked up as he entered the room. As one they all began to move forward. The Order of the Phoenix drew their wands at once and the battle began. The first wave of Death Eaters started firing spells as the Order. " We have to find Harry!" yelled Remus. With a nod toward Mad-Eye Moody Remus ran from the room. Remus ran down the halls searching every room he came upon. Still no Harry. He was here somewhere, but where?
Remus entered a room at the end of the hall and as he looked around he saw ropes on the floor with blood on them. He bent down to pick it up as the door opened. He jumped around with his wand raised. He relaxed when he saw that it was Dumbledore. " Anything?" asked Dumbledore.
"No. Just these ropes. It looks like someone was tied up in here. You don't think that it was Harry do you?"
"I'm afraid I do. Let's move quickly, we have to find Harry. If we don't I fear that Voldemort will kill him." As he said this he left the room. Remus put the ropes down and followed him out of the room. Dumbledore was right, they had to find Harry now.
Voldemort circled around Harry staring at him. Harry Potter was an enigma. He'd never seen a person able to handle all the torture inflicted on him and still be sane. Harry was staring back at Voldemort with hatred in his eyes. He could use this against Potter. He was finally giving in to the darkness in his heart. If he continued at this rate, Potter would be his ally.
Harry was in pain, he was ready to give up. He wanted it to stop. He wanted it to end. Voldemort had tortured him endlessly. He knew he had some broken bones. Many broken bones. There were gashes across his body that was bleeding heavily. He didn't know how long he would be conscious. He felt dizzy and woozy. " Harry," said Voldemort, " all of this can end. All you have to do is give me the prophecy."
"No. Even if I were about to die, I would never give it to you. So take your best shot." Said Harry.
"Very well. Have it your way." Voldemort said as he raised his wand. With a flick of his wrist Harry flew against the wall and chains wrapped around his wrists. " Give him the potion." Harry started to struggle in his binding to no avail. He couldn't get loose. The Death Eater grabbed his head and tried to open his mouth. Harry took the opportunity given to him and bit him. The Death Eater howled in pain and jumped back. He drew back his fist and punched Harry in the face. Harry immediately began to see spots in front of his eyes. His dropped down to rest on his chest. He felt like he was going to pass out. The Death Eater grabbed his head again and forced his mouth open and poured the vile tasting potion down his throat. Harry tried to spit it out, but the Death Eater forced his mouth to stay shut. Harry reflexively swallowed. Harry began to feel the effects immediately. " What have you given me?" Harry asked in a slurred voice. Voldemort laughed cruelly as he watched Harry slowly begin to succumb to the potion. " Nothing big. Just something that will keep you under control." Harry looked at with confusion written plainly on his face. " Draught of Living Death." Harry started to panic as he slowly succumbed to the potion. Voldemort wasn't going to kill him at all. He was going to keep him prisoner. Hidden from everyone. Harry thought of what this will do to Sirius and Anne and he knew no more.
" Keep him in this room." Said Voldemort as he turned to leave.
" Do I keep him tied up?" asked Dolohov.
" Yes. And gag and blindfold him as well."
" But why my lord? He is under the effects of the draught of living death."
" I have learned to never underestimate Potter. He has escaped me far too many times. Even when he clearly shouldn't be able to. Now, quit asking questions and do as I ask. If the Order of the Phoenix is able to rescue him or if he gets out of this himself I will kill you Dolohov. Potter is mine and no one will take him away from me. In no time Potter will join me. Even if I have to kill everyone he loves to ensure that happens."
" But why my lord? He's just a boy."
" Potter is no mere child. I have seen it myself. He is the most powerful wizard I have come across. With Potter on my side, no one will be able to stop me. Not even Dumbledore. With that he left the room. Dolohov shrugged his shoulders and gagged and blindfolded Harry as he left. He still didn't understand this. Potter was under the effects of the draught of the living death. You can't throw that off. Not without the proper potion that nor would escape and the Order didn't one knew how to properly make except for Severus Snape and he was a Death Eater. He never cast the charms on the room as he left. He didn't feel like he needed to. There was no way for Potter to throw off the effect of the potion and the Order didn't even know where Potter was being kept. Voldemort would never even know he thought as he walked down the hall.
Sirius saw Dumbledore in the hallway and ran up to him. " Albus!" Sirius yelled. Dumbledore turned to face him as he finished binding the Death Eaters he had just defeated. " What is it?" he asked in a worried tone as he glanced at the frantic face of Sirius.
" We need for someone to go to Anne."
" Why. She is safe at Hogwarts."
" Not for long. I overheard 2 Death Eaters talking. They intend to capture her to torture Harry with. They also mentioned my name as well." Dumbledore paled when he heard this. " Sirius, I need you to return to Hogwarts to keep an eye on Anne. I know you don't want o, but we must keep the 2 of you safe. If you're on Voldemort's list, then you're in as much danger as Harry is right now. I shudder to think what he will do you to torture Harry."
" But Albus..." Sirius stared to say, but Dumbledore held up his hand to stop Sirius.
" I need you to stay safe while we rescue Harry. If Voldemort got to you, then he will use you to attempt to seduce Harry."
" Seduce him? Voldemort's not trying to seduce Harry is he?"
" I'm afraid so. He wants Harry to join him. If he does something to you or Anne, it may be the final straw that will break Harry." Sirius had to agree with Dumbledore. Harry was getting very close to Anne and if anything ever happened to her Harry would never recover. " Alright Albus. I'll go, but you let me know the second you now about Harry."
" I will Sirius." Said Dumbledore as he watched Sirius take the portkey and disappear. Hopefully they would find Harry soon. Dumbledore continued in the direction he was headed before he met Sirius. He saw some Death Eaters at the end of the hallway and raised his wand as he charged into battle.
Sirius appeared in Dumbledore's office and looked around. He had to find Anne. She had to be all right. He ran out the door and went to the room that he knew Anne was staying.
Anne looked up as Sirius ran into the room. A smile crossed her face and she ran to him and embraced him in a hug. " Sirius! Did you find Harry? Is he alright?"
" Not yet, but they're still looking for him. There's a huge battle going on right now. A lot of Death Eaters have been captured already."
" Then why are you back? I thought you would stay there until Harry was found."
" I'm back because Voldemort wants to capture you and me. Someone had to come back that could protect you."
" Why would Voldemort want me?"
" He's trying to make Harry join him. He figures that if he captures you and me, Harry will join him to save us."
" What are we going to do?"
" I'm going to stay here with you and make sure that you're not captured. Don't worry. Why don't we go to the great hall and get something to eat. Everything is going to be fine. Voldemort won't capture either one of us and Harry will be rescued and brought back here. You'll see." Anne nodded her head in agreement and they left the room. Sam and William watched with trepidation. Sirius was right. Everything would be okay. They followed them out of the room. Had they stayed a few seconds longer they would have seen 2 Death Eaters appear suddenly. They looked around the room. It was empty. No one was there.
" Well? Where in the hell is she?" asked Lucius. His companion shook his head. He had no idea.
" The dark lord is not going to be happy. We were supposed to bring her back to him now. What are we going to do?" said MacNair.
" We find her and bring her to him. We know that Black is with the Order of the Phoenix right now. He should be captured soon. All we have to do is capture Potter's sister. This should be easy. She's not as dangerous as Potter is and he was captured."
" He was only captured so easy because he wasn't in good shape. If he had been at full strength it would have taken a lot more to catch him." Lucius nodded his head in agreement. Potter was definitely difficult to deal with. How a child could have so much power was beyond him. They made to leave the room when Anne and Sirius came running back through the door. They stopped when they saw the 2 Death Eaters standing there. Lucius and MacNair smiled and started throwing curses at them. Sirius and Anne ducked the curses quickly. " Anne! Go hide now! I'll hold them off." Anne ran out of the room and right into Crabbe. Anne tried to run back inside but he grabbed her arms and put his big hand over her mouth. She tried to scream but all that came out was a muffled sound. He was about to portkey her away when he was hit from behind. He looked around and saw Sam and William standing there with fury in their eyes. Anne made to scramble away. Crabbe saw this sand grabbed her again. She fought with all the strength she had. She bit, clawed, and punched Crabbe to let her go, but he held her tightly.
" You're not going anywhere girlie. The dark lord wants you, so the dark lord will have you."
" I don't think so asshole!" Anne took that moment to kick Crabbe right in the nuts and he went down. Anne ran over to Sam and William as they converged on Crabbe. At that moment Sirius came running out of the room to see Anne huddled in the corner and Sam and William beating the hell out of Crabbe. " Anne!" Sirius screamed as he ran over to her. " Are you alright?"
" Yeah. This guy just surprised me when I came out of the room. He tried to kidnap me but right when he was about to portkey us away Sam and William showed up. I owe them my life."
" You owe us nothing Anne. You're like a sister to us. We would do anything to protect you. We just wish we could have done the same for Harry."
" You still could. When Harry is brought back here, he'll need protection while he recovers." Said Sirius. " Now let's go get that food that we never got to get." They all nodded their heads in agreement. They were hungry. Anne thought of Harry as they headed to the great hall. She hoped that the Order would find him soon. She was just reunited with him. She couldn't lose him now. He was all she had.
Remus was getting frustrated. They had been fighting for hours and they still hadn't found Harry. He was starting to think that Harry wasn't even there. He was about to say that to Dumbledore when he came across a door he had never seen before. He tapped Dumbledore eon the shoulder and pointed. They headed toward the door and tried to open it. Of course it was locked. " Alohamora!" said Remus. What they saw made them cringe in fear. It was Harry. He was chained to the wall with his arms above his head, gagged and blindfolded as well. Remus ran up to him and pulled the blindfold off and the gag out of his mouth. " Harry!" yelled Remus. He watched in horror as Harry's head lolled to the side and he didn't wake up. " Harry wake up! Please!" Harry stayed unconscious. Remus looked at Dumbledore for an action. Dumbledore walked up to him and put his hand on his shoulder. " Come on Remus. Let's get Harry down from there." Remus nodded as he released the chains and gently laid Harry down on the floor of the cell. Harry was pale and clammy. He still didn't wake. " Albus. What's wrong with Harry? Why won't he wake up?"
" I don't know, but we need to get him out of here before Voldemort returns."
" Okay. Let's go." Remus said as he bent down to gently picks Harry up. As he lifted Harry the door flew open and Moody ran through the door. " Albus! You found him then. We need to get out of here. Voldemort has entered the fray. He's on his way to this room!" Remus started to head for the door when Voldemort opened it with a look of surprise in his eyes. Voldemort looked at Dumbledore, and then at Remus, then finally he looked at whom Remus was carrying. " And exactly where do you think you are going with my guest?"
" I'm taking him home. Away from you. It's time you learned that Harry is not here for you to torture. Harry has a right to a life that he can enjoy, not a life that is filled with so much death and destruction. He's barely 16 and he's faced you more than most adult wizards that are twice his age. Let us take him home."
Voldemort smiled. Such passion in this plea for Potter's life. He was almost moved. Almost. " This child will stay here with me. I have plans for him that doesn't include you. This boy will be my greatest weapon against you."
" He'll never join you Voldemort. Harry's a pure soul. He doesn't have darkness in his heart like you do." Said Dumbledore. " Let him go."
"No. He is mine and he goes nowhere. Prepare to die." Voldemort raised his wand and shot a curse at Remus. As he ducked the curse he dropped Harry on the floor. He knelt down and checked Harry over. He was still breathing, but it was very shallow. Harry wouldn't last much longer. He looked up to see Dumbledore dueling with Voldemort and Moody dueling with Dolohov. He tried to leave the room carrying Harry, but was stopped by Goyle. " And where do you think that you're going werewolf? Potter is staying here. My master will reward me for making sure that you don't take Potter."
" Have it your way." Said Remus. He fired a stunning spell at Goyle and he dropped to the ground in a heap. Remus left the room at a run. He needed to use the portkey to get Harry out, but he felt bad for leaving the others to fight alone. Remus looked down at Harry and realized that he didn't have time to worry about his sudden departure. Harry needed medical attention fast. As he picked up the portkey to transport himself and Harry he saw a red flash come out of nowhere and strike him in the chest. He fell to the ground with a thud. His last conscious thought was that they had failed as darkness claimed him.
Here's the next installment. I'm writing chapter 22 as we speak, so it should be up and submitted within the next couple of weeks. Review and let me know what you think of this chapter.