Everyone has a dark side. What separates a saint from a devil is whether or not they listen to their dark voices. Is Harry listening to his personal Demon, or is he still the Boy Who Lived?
I have to thank a reader for this story. The Demon Inside is a reader of my work, and TDI came from his/her name. The story just came to me after reading TDI's name, and i have to thank The Demon Inside.
The Demon Inside
Harry Potter stared at the body on the ground in front of him. How the two of them had ended up in the same alley at the same time he didn't know, but he'd been a bit quicker with his wand, and now Bellatrix Lestrange lay on the ground, unconscious from his Stupefy, and unable to prevent anything he wanted to do.
Harry looked up as Muggle sirens came closer. The short battle had apparently drawn some attention, and the last thing he needed was to be caught standing over a body. He took her wand and snapped it, putting the broken pieces in his pocket. Harry levitated the limp body and a few seconds later, the alley was empty of all life, except a quiet alley cat looking for food.
Bellatrix Lestrange came back to consciousness and recognized the headache that came from being stunned. She tried to sit up, only to find that she couldn't move. She opened her eyes, frowning at her surroundings. She expected that if an Auror caught her, she should be in a Ministry cell, waiting for the Dementors to come and get her, for Azkaban or the Kiss.
She wasn't in a cell, or in any of the hidden places she knew about, and she firmly stepped on a thread of fear as she realized she was tied up in a chair. She couldn't see anything except a wall a few feet in front of her, and another wall to her left. She appeared to be in a ramshackle building. There was some sort of light behind her, and she could hear the sounds of traffic, heavily muted from outside somewhere.
She tried to think why she'd be tied up, and couldn't find a reason. If the Dark Lord was angry at her, he would have woken her with the Cruciatus Curse.
"Hello?" she called, determined to end the suspense.
"Hello, Bella." The voice came from behind her, and she almost recognized it. She heard movement and then her captor moved out in front of her.
"Potter." Bellatrix glared at him. "What do you think you're doing?"
He stared at her, and waved a sheaf of parchments at her. "I think I captured you, and now I am trying to figure out what to do with you." He looked at the parchment in his hand. "I could just turn you over to the Ministry, and be a hero for capturing you. Of course, we both know that you would probably be out of there again in hours, so we'll throw that idea out."
Harry took a sheet of parchment from the stack in his hand and crumpled it up, tossing it in the corner. "I could let you go." He rolled his eyes. "Yeah, right." Another parchment joined the first one.
"If you're not going to turn me in and you're not going to let me go, what are you going to do?" Bella was bewildered. After all, Potter was not like the Dark Lord.
"Currently," Harry said in a low voice, "I wish I could give you to Neville and walk away. But, he and Snape died together and I can't raise him from the dead, so I'll just have to take his vengeance for him."
Harry waved the papers at her. "I've spent the time while you were unconscious writing down all the things I could do, and now I have to decide which of my options I'm going to do."
Bella stared at him and then laughed harshly. "You won't do anything, Potter," she sneered. "You're too goody-goody for that. You can't even cast a proper Cruciatus."
Harry looked at her, and Bella felt that trace of fear again. Harry's eyes were flat, and something in them made her wish she could take those words back. Harry looked different somehow, and for the first time, he worried her.
"You think not?" he asked quietly. "After all you have done, you think I'll just let you walk away? The only reason you didn't die in the Ministry is because I couldn't catch you, and Voldemort took you with him when he left. Now, I have you, and absolutely nobody knows where we are."
He took something out of his pocket and tossed it on the ground. Bella hissed as she recognized her wand. "Damn you, Potter." There was real hurt in her voice.
Harry cocked his head, looking at her. "If I'd known that breaking your wand was going to hurt you that much, I'd have waited until you were conscious to do it." He shrugged. "Right now, I have to decide which of my choices to make."
Bella was staring at her wand, the only thing she had left that was strictly hers, and her last link with her family. The rest of them were dead, or unwilling to see her. That wand had been her last link to better times.
"I could simply kill you, and be done with it." Potter was talking to himself, Bella realized, and kept quiet. She began attempting to loosen the ropes that bound her without attracting Harry's attention. "I like that option, since it does me the least harm, but on the other hand, it doesn't begin to cover the things you've done."
He looked at her again, and she froze. "Hermione found something interesting while looking for ways to prevent a Wizard from doing magic. Did you know that you can actually turn a Wizard into a Muggle? You can render them completely unable to do magic at all."
Bella stared at Harry in horror. Magic was everything to Bella, and she'd rather be dead than unable to do magic. Before she could say anything, Harry continued. "I could use the Cruciatus, but it would take forever to render you insane, like you did the Longbottoms, and I don't have the time. I could rape and torture you, but that one is distasteful to me, as it means I would have to touch you, and I don't want to do that if I can help it."
Bella was staring at Harry in shock. He was discussing various ways to hurt her as if they were talking about what to do on a Holiday, and suddenly, she couldn't keep that thread of fear down any more. "What happened to you?" she blurted out. "You've changed."
Harry looked up at her. "What did you expect, Bella? You and your lord have killed Ginny, Ron, most of the other Weasleys, and more than thirty of my friends in the last two years. Hermione and I are the last two survivors of our entire year at Hogwarts, and two of just seventeen survivors of the Hogwarts Massacre." Harry's eyes were not flat any longer, instead they blazed with a cold fire that unnerved Bella.
"Since I left school two years ago, you four have made my life hell. Pettigrew, destroying the Burrow, leaving Fred as the last Weasley. You, killing Sirius and Ron. Snape, who killed Professor Dumbledore and let the Death Eaters into Hogwarts the next year, causing the closing of the school."
Harry stared at her, and his eyes were growing a little wild. "I don't need to tell you about what Voldemort did to Ginny, or how many people he's killed over the last two years, friends, strangers and Muggles, more people that I have to carry on my conscience."
"I owe all of you," he said, staring at her. "But I only have you to take it out on. You're going to pay the cost for everything and everyone I've lost, and it's a heavy bill to pay. That's why I'm taking so much time to make sure I do exactly what I want to do."
"You're insane." The words slipped out before Bella could think about what she was saying.
"AND YOU DROVE ME THERE!" Harry was pointing his wand at her, the parchments scattered around his feet as he visibly fought for control. "No, not in the heat of anger. I want you to feel every minute of whatever I do. I want you to suffer, as I have suffered, as Hermione suffered when Ron died, as Neville suffered every day of his life, watching his parents wasting away without knowing him."
Harry sat down again, and reached for a parchment. "Here's a good one. I could cut out your tongue and leave you paralysed from the neck down." Harry looked at her. "Imagine that, lying in a bed for the rest of your life, unable to do magic or even move." Harry set that parchment aside.
Bellatrix LeStrange stared at the man in front of her and thought desperately. Harry Potter was not the same boy she'd taunted in the Ministry four years ago. She suddenly guessed what had happened to Pettigrew. "Did you catch Pettigrew like this as well?"
Harry tossed another parchment into the corner before looking up. "No, he ran too fast. I tried, but he kept turning into a rat. I had to go, so I used Hermione's spell."
He started reading another parchment, and Bella bit her lip. "What does it do?"
"It locks an Animage in its animal form. I left him with a Boa Constrictor in a pet shop." Harry looked up thoughtfully. "I occasionally wonder if he got eaten, or sold as a pet, unable to do anything but regret his choices in life."
Bella felt one of the ropes on her wrists loosen, and a quiver of hope that she could get away ran through her. She tried to keep the hope off her face as she worked on the ropes. Harry looked at another parchment. "Here's a good one. I could Obliviate you, erasing everything you ever were, and put you in a Muggle sanatorium, to spend the rest of your life drooling on yourself."
Bella listened to Harry debate the possibilities with himself with a growing sense of fear. Potter had gone completely around the bend, and was just as bad as Voldemort, possibly worse. The Dark Lord had to know this. This would change his plans, she was sure. They had counted on Harry being a good guy, and if he was becoming a Dark Wizard, that made him a greater threat than any Light Side Wizard.
Harry looked at a parchment. "I can't do this one. As much fun as it would be to remove all your memories, saving them in a Pensieve, and letting you go without knowing anything, I just don't know how to remove the memories of an unwilling subject." He balled the parchment up and tossed it with the others.
He smiled, a dark smile, filled with hints of insanity and a darkness Bella had only seen in the Dark Lord. "Removing your skin entirely, and keeping it from growing back isn't too hard though."
"Potter, please." The plea slipped out before Bella could censor herself. Listening to Harry casually suggesting torturing her in ways not even Voldemort had ever considered was fraying her self-control badly.
Harry spun, facing her and backhanding her hard, splitting her lip. "You should have thought of the consequences of your actions long ago, Bella. It's a little too late for mercy now. Or have you forgotten that I held Hermione and Ron as he bled out and died?"
Harry raised his hand again, and Bella flinched. She looked at Harry, and the fear showed plainly now, because Harry was barely resisting the urge to hit her again. He stood there for a long minute, visibly shaking. "No, I won't hit you. If I start doing that now, I won't stop until my hands have your life's blood on them, and that would be over far too quickly for you."
Bella sat perfectly still, praying that Harry didn't notice the loose ropes around her wrists. If she could just get her ankles free, she could run.
Harry turned away from her, and looked at the last parchment in his hand. He read it, and a slow evil smile started creeping across his face. "Perfect." He frowned at the parchment. "I need a flensing knife though, and a cutting torch."
He grinned at Bella, and there was very little sanity in that grin. "Don't go away, Bella. I just need a couple of props and we're be ready to get to work on you." Harry left the room, locking the door behind him.
Bella wasted no time slipping the loose ropes on her wrists and starting to untie her legs. She finished, and crossed to the door. Placing her ear to it, she couldn't hear anything on the other side and she tried the door. The lock resisted her and she swore softly. She crossed to the one window and opened the curtains. She swore again, not as softly. They were at least four stories high here, making jumping out of the window a risky business at best.
She searched the room swiftly. Other than her chair and the balls of parchment Harry had bent throwing down, she was the only thing in the room. She did stop long enough to pick up her broken wand. She heard a sound from the hallway outside the door and froze. Potter was returning, and she didn't think she'd like whatever he had in mind with a cutting torch and a flensing knife.
With the key rattling in the lock, Bella made her choice. As least this way, she had a chance, and if it failed, she'd die quickly. Bella ran across the room and dove through the window.
OoOoOoO Saints and Demons OoOoOoO
The rest of this story has two endings.
Read them both, or just pick one, and see how it ends.
I think picking just one would be more fun, personally.
OoOoOoO Version One: The Saint. OoOoOoO
Bella hit the window, shattering it and waiting for the fall. She hit far sooner than she'd thought she would, and blinked. The window had been enchanted to show a higher place. It had only been on the ground floor. She got up, ignoring the cuts that bled freely and Apparated away, blessing her luck.
Harry and Hermione entered the room Bella had been in and Harry absently repaired the broken window. "The trap is set, Hermione," he said, turning to look at her. "Now, we just have to hope Voldemort takes the bait."
Hermione looked at Harry. "He will. I knew what you were doing and you scared the hell out of me."
Harry sighed, a bone deep weariness showing in his eyes. "It wasn't all acting. I've dreamed of doing things like that to her many times."
Hermione nodded. She knew all about revenge. Since Ron had died in her arms, she'd had her own dreams. "You could have done any of them, you know. I would understand."
Harry looked at her. "I could have, and I thought about it. It felt so good to hit her that I wanted to do it again and again, until I couldn't lift my arms any more. There's a demon inside us all, Hermione. What separates us from Voldemort, is whether or not we listen to it." He hugged her gently. "I choose to be better than them, and look in the mirror without guilt."
Hermione began picking up the balls of parchment that Harry had been crumpling up. "Did you have to waste so much blank parchment, Harry? This stuff is getting expensive."
Harry stared at her as she rescued more parchment. A smile grew on his face and he took her hand as they walked out. "Don't ever change, Hermione."
OoOoOoO Version Two: Demon OoOoOoO
Bella hit the window and braced herself to fall, hoping that she'd either find a way to save herself or die quickly. This new Harry Potter scared her more than Voldemort. After all, she knew what would make Voldemort reach for his wand. Potter though, was a completely unknown factor now.
She hit the ground badly after just a few seconds. She looked around and realized that the room she had been in was a ground floor flat. She stood up and started toward the alley at the back of the building, intent only on getting out from under the Anti-Apparation wards she could feel.
She got out of sight and continued down the alley. She heard Potter's voice behind her and broke into a run. "I will find you, Bella."
Bella shivered at the venom in his voice, and ran, abandoning dignity and self control in favour of distance. She turned the corner and randomly turned down streets, always seeking to get further from the fiery green eyes she could feel chasing her.
When her side hurt too bad to run any more, she slowed, but kept moving. She finally felt the Anti-Apparation wards fall away from her and she Apparated with a sense of relief so strong she nearly cried.
She reappeared in a strange place. She spun, only to see Harry smirking at her. "There's a tracker in your clothes. Add a tiny spell Hermione found, that can plant a picture in your head, and you have the perfect way to demonstrate that there is no escape from me."
Bella looked around in horror, but before she could do anything, Harry cast a total body bind on her and moved closer. "I had to let you think you had gotten away. Taking away your hopes was part of my plan. Now, I'm going to take your magic. Then, I am going to Imperio you. I will command you to obey any request, command or order any man gives you."
Harry did exactly what he'd said he was going to do.
Bella barely noticed the slum Harry dropped her off in, still in shock over the loss of her magic. She didn't notice the savage looking young men approaching either, until they stood around her, blocking her retreat.
"Cor, lookit the bird we have here." Bella stared dully at the one that had spoken. "You're on our street, luv. I hope you have some money to pay the toll." The leer on his face made the payment he wanted clear.
Bella blinked, and had a thought. If she angered these men enough, they would kill her. She started to swing at the leader, only to watch in horror as her arm and voice betrayed her.
She ran her hand down his face. "I have enough for everyone," she purred. She could feel the spell that was controlling her.
Over the leader's shoulder, Bella saw Potter's face appear from under his invisibility cloak, before the men surrounded her and carried her into a nearby park.
The cheerful smile Harry Potter wore would not have been out of place on Voldemort's face.
A/N: Step up and take your pick. Is Harry merely acting, playing a role to trap Voldemort? Or is he growing darker than Voldemort could ever dream of?
If Harry did go dark, he'd be a thousand times worse than Voldemort. Voldemort was evil from the start, judging by what we know of his early life. Harry is good man now, and there is no greater evil than a good person gone bad.
I won't tell you which version is real... but for the purposes of this story, Harry has lost his girlfriend, all the Weasleys except Fred and every single person he knew at school. He's staring into the Abyss, and it's looking back at him.