Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter or other original characters. All praise J.K. Rowling for letting us write fanfiction.
The war continues as Harry searches for the horcruxes. He starts to lose hope until Hermione makes a discovery… Draco finds himself lost in the heart of darkness until a dark, powerful object frees him. And Roslyn, the new gem at Hogwarts has a startling secret even she is not aware of. War, passion, and betrayal encompass this story as three people find their purpose in this world. Post Half-Blood Prince. Warning: Explicit Sex Scenes, Rape, and Character Death, you are warned!
Chapter 1: The First Triumph
It had been about three weeks though Draco knew no change in time. He could no longer decipher between night and day. He could feel his body slowly wanting to shut down, he didn't know what was keeping him alive. Perhaps it was his punishment to suffer for what he did, or perhaps the Dark Lord's way of showing what happens to those who defy him.
Draco sat with his hands on his knees, with his head against the wall. He knew of what surrounded him. Hidden by the darkness were endless walls of human remains. No longer did this concern him. The dead was no threat to him. It was the walking dead that kept him in his prison.
Draco's first night alone, after he was announced a traitor, he had tried to escape. He simply walked out of his dungeon like imprisonment and slowly made his way down the dark tunnels. It was then he realized where they had taken him: he was underground, trapped within the endless maze of death known as the catacombs. Noticing a faint glow, Draco followed the eerie light. He descended into the deaths of the earth following it. He entered a large domed room. As he neared the source, he began to sense the dark magic emitting from the deep green glow. Feeling oddly drawn to the fine goblet, from which the light came, Draco felt his mind being broke into as he lost control. In a trance-like state he took the goblet from its pedestal.
As soon as it was in his hands, the green glow died and slowly dissipated. The silence was deafening. Draco suddenly felt his bones chill as he turned around. Descending from the walls were skeletons that had a flesh like covering holding their bones together. There were hundreds of them surrounding him.
"Inferi," Draco thought. He could not believe what his eyes were seeing. He felt a single drop of sweat run down his forehead. His blonde hair was falling into his eyes forcing his sight to the ground. The goblet. Grabbing it, Draco felt it burn his skin. The inferi were closing in around him. Forcing himself to calm, he focused on the dark, magical objet in his hands. He closed his eyes harnessing the power. Suddenly the goblet lit in flames like a torch just as in inferius lashed its razor sharp claws across his back. The inferi scattered at the light. Draco had about a two-meter radius that separated them from him. He knew he couldn't hold the flame much longer so he quickly made his way through the throng of inferi. He was appalled by the smell of rotting flesh…"they were victims of the Plague," he thought. Trying to ignore the inferi surrounding him, Draco made his way back to the tunnels and to the room he was imprisoned in.
Over time, the inferi did not leave, but neither did they enter his cave like room. Draco no longer had the strength to harness the power within the goblet. Sheltered from the inferi, he remained in the darkness.
Hermione lie sleeping in her bed at Grimmauld Place. It had been three months since Harry left. That evening Harry had left Ron and Hermione a note saying, "I'm sorry, but I need to do this alone." Harry And he was gone. Hermione knew deep down he was right, but felt a certain emptiness with him gone. Suddenly, the raging storm outside cast a bolt of lightning with a deafening thunder that awoke her from her restless slumber. Glancing at the clock, three a.m., she pulled on some robes and made her way to the living room where she would find Ginny. She never really got used to Harry being gone. She hadn't slept for more than a few hours at a time since he left. Her face was pale and sunken in from her lack of interest in eating. Hermione sat down next to her.
"Ginny, you should really try to get some sleep," Hermione said.
Ginny just sat there looking into the darkness.
"He's alright Gin, I can feel it," Hermione said taking her hand.
Ginny nodded, but looked unconvinced. Looking into Hermione's eyes, she spoke as a tear slid down her face, "I miss him."
"I know Gin," Hermione said softly pulling her into a warm embrace, "I know."
No sooner had the tear fallen from Ginny's cheek had the heavy door to Grimmauld Place been thrust open to reveal a shadowy figure…
"No…" Ginny whispered in disbelief, "it can't be."
Hermione stood and moved towards the figure.
"Harry?" Hermione said, her voice wavering on the verge of tears.
And there he stood, soaking wet, wand in hand with a look in his eyes Hermione was unfamiliar with.
"I killed the bloody snake," Harry snarled with a malicious tone in his voice.
Hermione let out a shaky laugh before almost knocking Harry down,
"Missed you too, Hermione," Harry said with her hair in his face.
When Hermione released him he stepped into the house and stopped when he saw Ginny's tear-stricken face.
Harry hesitated for only a moment before grabbing her and kissing her passionately. Hermione smiled as she shut the door.
They decided to wait until morning to alert the rest of the order of Harry's return. Ginny and Harry were very grateful for their evening together. As can be expected everyone was thrilled to see Harry in good health and even more thrilled another horcrux was destroyed.
"You killed Nagini!" Lupin exclaimed, "great Harry, absolutely splendid, the first triumph of the war!"
The evening was spent in high morale, though Harry still looked burdened. The others took this as a hint to not ask about what happened. After the evening died down Harry pulled Hermione to the side.
"Hermione, what do you know about the 'Lion's Last Resort'?" Harry asked, the importance of the question etched into his expression.
Hermione looked into his eyes and hated to let him down, "I don't know Harry, but I promise to do my best to find out…but why do you ask?"
Harry gave her a serious look, "because I think it's a horcrux."
A.N/ Please review!!! The story is complete, I just have to type it all. I'm posting often, I want to get it up!
The catacombs are a system of subterranean tunnels that span for miles under Paris...this is where Draco is.
Also, thanks to Yemi Hikari, I have tremendously improved the story so it is readable and less confusing! Thanks! Amanda