Chapter 53: Time to Rock the Boat
It did not take long for things to return to normal… well, as normal as one would expect for the little Pack of Shadows. They continued with their lessons - both from the Hogwarts' professors and from Sir Edwin, who upon seeing Luna wearing her Limiter had a thoughtful and faraway look that he refused to explain when asked by the Pack -, and they usually kept to themselves… save for whenever one of the other students would approach them with a question or two. It came as a surprise to Harry when he finally and truly noticed that some students - a small few - from the all of the Houses baring the Mark of the Cwn Annwn, as Luna had called the simple knot. The half-demon could sense his Inner Beast stirring whenever he saw the Cwn Annwn signet. It was as if his demonic half was acknowledging those baring his mark were his and under his protection…
At first, the teen did not really think much of it. He had thought that the other students wearing the Celtic Dog knot were doing so as a trend… because they had thought it looked cool. He had seen it happen before while in Primary School. But he quickly changed his mind when he saw his Pack interacting with those baring the mark.
The young Alpha watched as his little family would teach and/or guide these mark-bearers to think for themselves and not accept the Headmaster's nor the Ministries version of how things were and should be, which oddly gave the young wizard a comforting sense of hope for the future of the Wizarding world…
As the Shadow Hound walked down the castle's corridor to his next class, he had light smile on his face as he remembered what happened earlier that morning in Professor McGonagall's Transfiguration class… an example of the new future.
On either side of him, Hermione and Neville gave their Alpha a knowing smile before continuing on with their own discussion on some spell that the raven-haired teen did not catch. The green-eyed wizard continued to mentally replayed the old crone's face when a Ravenclaw classmate questioned the ancient hag as to why the incantation was designed the way it was, and what purpose did it serve. The older witch did answer the question with nonsense that the spell had always been used with the approval of the Ministry of 1947 and Wizengamot of 1948, which then lead to a discussion of why that particular spell versus another spell that worked just as well, which the Raven had found in an old spell book that belonged to his grandmother when she was in school during the 1920's.
The Gryffindor Head of House had looked as if she had swallowed a whole lemon when she demanded that young wizard to demonstrate the so-called better spell. The Raven did as instructed, and it was quickly discovered that the so-called better spell was in fact better and easier to cast. This caused a new level of excitement in the students, and the old crone had tried to get the class back under her control and follow her lesson plan when suddenly she began taking House Points from the Ravens… even a few from her own house…
Harry let out a quiet chuckle at the memory when suddenly the corridors echoed with shouts and spell casting.
Without a second thought, the half demon rushed toward the source of the shouting. He knew that his packmates would follow him.
The dark-haired teen skidded to a halt with his hand on the hilt of his caduceus.
His emerald green orbs narrowed as he observed the situation before him.
Clustered together were a couple of Ravens that Harry recognized from his morning Transfiguration class as well as a few Hufflepuffs, all of whom wore the Cwn Annwn mark. One of the Ravenclaw students, clutching his arm, was on the ground while a Badger was coughing up slugs against the far wall. With two of the group injured, another Raven - the Raven from the Transfiguration class - was trying to get a fourth wizard, who stood protectively in front of the them, to ignore the jeering and taunting Lions. And the wizard standing protectively in front of the Ravens and Badgers was a Slytherin… Gregory Goyle, to be exact.
The larger wizard stood with his wand at the ready and stared down a small group of Gryffindors, being lead by Ron Weasley and Dean Thomas.
Hermione immediately went to the Badger's side and cast the counter spell to the slug-vomiting curse, and Neville checked on the injured Raven. And all the while, Harry casually walked beside the Slytherin's side with his eyes never wavering from the mangy lion.
"Goyle." The teen calmly greeted his year mate.
"Potter." The bigger wizard replied as he subconsciously shifted his body to protect the Raven wizard on his other side. Even though the larger Slytherin knew that the lithe-framed Gryffindor was an ally, Gregory still felt a bit wary of the smaller wizard, especially since the one he was truly trying to protect was by his side… his boyfriend.
"So what's going on here?" Harry calmly asked as he relaxed his posture, showing them that he did not belief the Lions to be a major threat.
"This doesn't concern you, Potter." Ron sneered.
A black brow arched but waited for an answer.
"Weasley attacked Stephenson." Goyle honestly answered.
"Hm." The dark haired teen murmured in acknowledgement to what the Slytherin had said.
"Shut it! Snake!" Dean bellowed then leveled a glower on Harry, "You traitor, how would you just let this slide?!"
Again Harry arched a brow.
"Let what slide?"
"That birdbrain humiliated our Head of House! And in her class no less!" Thomas accusingly pointed at the Raven, standing next the Goyle.
At this Goyle blinked in confusion as he looked at Stephenson then at Potter, who had a small smirk gracing his face.
"I would think that she humiliated herself by reacting as she did." Harry's tone was casual as he just simply shrugged.
"That's just stupid! We don't need to know a new spell when the old one is just fine!" Ron snapped, "I don't know what you're playing at, Potter, but all this is your fault! I know it!"
"My fault?" Harry genuinely surprised by the blame. "And what exactly is my fault?"
"That stupid symbol, the questions and making friends with those damned snakes!" The redhead snarled, "What are you trying to do?!"
Harry just frowned then looked over at Goyle, who was just surprised by the accusation. Of all the strange and ridiculous things to accuse the Boy-Who-Lived of, the Weasel took offense to a symbol and people asking intelligent questions to better themselves was not something that Goyle would have expected.
"Do you know what he's talking about?" Harry asked the larger wizard, who shrugged.
"I'm not sure." Gregory replied.
"And vat iz diz…?" An oily voice cooed, causing the students to look up at the Defense Against the Dark Arts professor.
"Professor!" Ron and Dean cried while the others become quiet.
Gregory glanced over at the green-eyed wizard, whose eyes narrowed with a low and barely audible growl emanating from the Gryffindor teen.
"They attacked us! And humiliated Professor McGonagall!" Ron took the lead in throwing baseless accusations around.
The Ravenclaws and Hufflepuffs gave a sound of protest but were quickly quieted by Hermione and Neville. Goyle looked at Harry, ready to follow the dark-haired teen's lead.
Professor Chauvelin stared at Harry with his dead dark eyes and an empty smile.
"Vell, vell… diz iz not good for ju, non?" The DADA professor murmured, "Vat do ju have to zay about dis?"
"Nothing since you've already made up your mind before learning both sides." Harry replied as he noted how the Frenchman immediately went to Ron and Dean's side. To the young dog-demon that spoke volumes of the oily professor's intentions.
"Ju have zome cheek, mon gracon." Chauvelin's eyes narrowed before smiling his empty smile again, "And yet, ju speak ze truth…"
Ron and Dean beamed at the Professor's exclamation while the others looked on in horrified confusion. Did the professor openly admitted to knowing that Ron and Dead had lied? And that he was not going to do a thing about it?
The DADA professor then drew his wand out, causing the students to tense up.
"But vat iz de point of de truth if ju cannot remember it?"
"Don't you even think about it, Chauvelin." Harry grunted. His hand rested on the hilt of his caduceus.
"Iz dat a threat, Monsieur Potter?" The professor smiled sickly.
While the so-called Demon Hunter and the demon Lord held their battle of wills, Hermione and Neville quickly and quietly evacuated the Ravens and Badgers out of the area; however, not before Ron and Dean cried out for them to stop. The pair pulled out their wands and cast a few spells, but their spells bounced off a shield of a pale blue color interlaced with purplish-black swirls, creating hypnotic tribal markings.
Chauvelin's beady black eyes narrowed, not on the teen but on the shield, as he subconsciously clutched his fist around a gold ring on his finger as it burned his flesh. Suddenly his eyes widened as he snapped his attention on the teen, whose expression remained blank and unreadable.
"Demon!" The DADA professor quietly hissed as his face contorted into an ugly mask of pure hatred.
The oily man raised his wand high, which began to glow a shade of green that nearly matched his eyes.
Harry remained still.
"POTTER!" A familiar voice bellowed and echoed throughout the corridor, halting the Frenchman's spell casting.
The strong steady gait of the Potions Master thundered throughout the stone hallway. As Severus approached the protected students, the Protego spell vanished into a wisp of smoke. The students instinctively gathered behind the formidable Slytherin Head of House as he came to stand next to his Gryffindor student. The dark wizard had his arms crossed, and all the while, he looked readily to kill the green-eyed wizard with his bare hands. But Harry knew better.
The half demon knew that his nakam-ciuswas also paying close attention to the DADA professor from the corner of his eye. It did not escape the younger wizard's notice that the oily yathus had uttered the first few syllables of the Killing Curse, and of course, the teen did not miss the faint hiss of the word 'demon' slipping pass the Frenchman's lips either. Does he know? How did he know? The Shadow Hound frantically thought while keeping a calm and nonchalant demeanor.
"What is the meaning of this?!" Snape demanded, causing his Brat to look at him as those green eyes kept flickering back to Chauvelin.
"Potter!" Severus snapped again. He knew that the younger wizard felt that the DADA professor posed a bigger threat than himself. It did not take a genius to read the teen's body language, but he needed the youth to keep his focus on the Potions Master so that the dark wizard could get Harry and the others out of this mess without further incident. Severus just needed the teen to play along.
"My apologies, Professor Snape," Harry gave his nakam-cius a slight bow of his head, "it would seem that Chauvelin and I were having a disagreement."
"A disagreement?" Severus hissed then he looked over to the Frenchman, who remained quiet and looked murderously toward the Gryffindor. "A disagreement that made you late to my class?!"
Harry blinked at his Mate's hiss. The teen was certain that he still had time before he would be considered late then again if his Slytherin wanted to use this as an excuse to get him and the others out of there then he was not going to complain. The green-eyed teen bowed his head again.
"Again my apologies-"
"I'm sick and tried of this!" The dark wizard snarled as he stepped forward and grabbed the teen's arm.
For a brief moment, Severus felt the hair on his neck to raise when he locked gaze with his Brat. The teen's eyes flashed dangerously while a very quiet rumble vibrated from the youth. The Potions Master mentally kicked himself as he remembered the Gryffindor's Bitten behavior.
By grabbing the younger man the way he did, Severus had unintentionally set a challenge for dominance… a challenge, judging by the teen's eyes and the low rumbling the green-eye wizard had accepted. While the soldier in the Potions Master would have been fascinated to see what the teen would do, he knew this was neither the place nor the time for that indulgence.
For now, Severus lowered his eyes and subtly exposed his throat to the younger wizard, who calmed down a bit, but the dark wizard knew that his actions would be not ignored by the teen.
The moment his nakam-cius grabbed his arm, Harry felt his Inner Beast rise to the challenge, but a part of him knew that the corridor in front of an oily Frenchman, who tried to kill him, and Severus' students was not the place to show his dark wizard who was dominant. It took every bit of his self control to keep his Inner Beast from raising too close to the surface. Something must have shown in Harry's face because the teen watched as his Dark One give difference to him… not submission… /No, Severus never submits easily…/ Harry and his Inner Beast mentally purred. For the moment, the demon Lord allowed his nakam-cius to manhandle him out of the corridor.
"You think we'll kowtow to your every whims, Potter?!" Severus questioned, "Because of your complete and utter disregard to your fellow year mates, I had to look for you and caused me to re-adjust my lessons…"
While the Potions Master ranted and raved, the other students followed after the infamous pair. The Ravenclaw, who with injured arm, tried to protest the Slytherin professor's accusations but was quickly silenced by a firm hand on his good arm. When the Raven looked at who had stopped him, he was surprised to see Longbottom shake his head. Quickly the group turned the corner and gathered into the Potions classroom, where a single student looked up from his potions and looked wide-eyed at the odd group that had entered… and the one student was Draco.
As soon as the door closed behind them, and immediately Hermione, Neville and Goyle cast a variety of privacy charms about the classroom.
"Are you alright?" The Potions Master immediately turned to his Brat. The Slytherin immediately and intimately recognized the familiar Elysian green spell color of the Killing Curse that the Frenchman had begun to cast.
Bright Elysian emeralds peered into equally bright obsidian gems. Harry picked up the faint traces of fear coloring his nakam-cius' orange flower scent. Subconsciously the half demon let out a purr to calm his Mate, which worked as well as any Cheering Charm.
"Harry?" Hermione quietly called, causing the pair to be aware of their surroundings.
"Did Professor Chauvelin -"
"It would seem so." The demon Lord interrupted his an'sor before she could finish her question, which caused Neville to pale and Hermione to let out a sharp cry of horror.
"What? What happened?" The Ravens and the Badgers asked over each other.
Severus suddenly remembered himself and who else was with him. He pulled away from his Brat. He subconsciously crossed his arms across his chest and glared at the wizard teen, who only lightly smiled.
"Nothing to worry about." Harry remarked. He felt that there was no reason to alarm them with the fact that the DADA professor tried to kill him, "It'll probably be a good idea to have those two see Madame Pomfrey…"
"Oh…" Stephenson muttered in agreement as he looked at his injured friends.
"Mina, Neville, take them to the infirmary." Harry stated.
"No problem." Neville replied, "Come on, we'll get you fixed up in a jiffy."
As the room cleared out, only Severus, Harry, Goyle, Stephenson and surprisingly Draco remained behind after he spelled his potion to disappear. And for a second time, the door closed shut, and the earlier privacy charm were set back into place.
"So… By the way, what was that all about? With Weasley and his merry band of miscreants?" Harry finally asked after a few moments of awkward silence.
"Miscreants? Really, Potter, expanding your vocabulary? How refreshing…" The Potions Master drawled as he seated himself on his desk but kept an eye on his cheeky Brat.
"Impressed?" Was the teen's cheeky reply.
"Uhm…" Stephenson looked at the pair oddly then at Goyle, who subtly gave the Raven a nod.
"Uhm… well… we were just going to study hall when Weasley attacked us."
"Weasley attacked you?!" Professor Snape repeated then calmly said, "Twenty points from Gryffindor for attacking a fellow student."
The Raven stared at Potter, expecting the Gryffindor to protest but was surprised when the green-eyed wizard just looked at him.
"And what excuse did Mr. Weasley give for attacking you?" The Potions Master questioned with an arched brow, which caused Stephenson to flinch.
"Uhm…" Stephenson fidgeted under the Head of Slytherin's House's gaze, "Well, uhm… he felt that I humiliated Professor McGonagall when I asked her a question in class…"
"What question would that be?"
"I just asked why we're learning the Funis-fascia charm versus the Coagmento-fascia charm for repairing broken wood furniture…"
"And you somehow humiliated Professor McGonagall by asking this questioned?" Severus' tone reflected the absurdity that he felt about the situation at hand as he looked at the Raven in question, who sheepishly nodded.
"Yep, and somehow this is my fault…" Harry darkly grumbled, which caused his nakam-cius to look at him curiously.
"What madness have we descended into…" Severus softly whispered that only Harry's keen ears heard.
Caduceus (Latin) - wand
Protego (Latin) - protect
Nakam-cius (youma-lingua) - Intended, prior to being officiated
Yathus (youma-lingua) - bastard
An'sor (youma-lingua) - older sister
Coagmento-fascia (Latin) - Glue together binding
Funis-fascia (Latin) - Rope binding
Stay tuned for the next chapters of Harry Potter and the Pack of Shadows coming June 1, 2014.