It was absolute chaos.
Privet Drive was in ruins, buildings reduced to rubble or burning, cars turned on their sides, torn in half or just set on fire; trees, flowers, fences, all utterly destroyed. Bodies, strewn across the street like Dudley's discarded sweet wrappers. Victims of Avada Kedavra. Unmarked, eyes shut, their faces peaceful as if in mockery of sleep for all their lack of life. The street was next to silent save the crackling of fire, the screams of the survivors, cruel laughter and woops from their attackers, the occasional shout of a spell and the hoarse somewhat panicked rattling breaths of fleeing Dementors, herded along at the horns and jaws of a glowing stag and a remarkably Grim-like dog Patroni.
Harry dove behind a burning car that had been turned on its side, two streets over from number 4, closing his eyes and trying to control his breathing, trying to make the gasping rasp that passed his lips as quiet as he possibly could. His fingers were numb from where they were curled –like claws, around his wand and the butt of Uncle Vernon's hand-gun, trying to flex his stiff fingers, get the blood running into them again. The gun in his hand was one of the modern Beretta M9 series from America, Uncle Vernon had specifically applied for it the month after the Dementor attack on Dudley, in case any more 'freaky business' happened –this said with a side ways glance at Harry once he'd returned from Hogwarts the next summer, telling the young Potter heir that he would most likely be on the receiving end of the weapon if he wasn't careful.
Harry pulled a face at the memory of his relatives, 'If only you'd listened to me the first time I told you to escape. You might all still be alive.' The raven haired 15-year-old thought.
Earlier that evening, around 8 PM, when he'd been doing the dishes Harry's scar exploded with pain, not the kind from an emotional overload –Harry knew what those felt like, but the kind that came from being within 200-yards of Voldemort. The Proximity kind of pain. Harry, not knowing that the Order member meant to watch him was already dead, acted quickly, grabbing his wand and summoning several bottles of alcohol, a dishcloth, the gun and telling his relatives to hide or get out of the house via the back door. Running upstairs, Harry grabbed the Marauder's Map, his Invisibility Cloak and hastily set Hedwig free with a short note to Dumbledore reading:
'Death Eaters in Privet Drive.'
Before grabbing his Firebolt and jumping out of the window under both cloak and disillusionment, he'd studied it to teach in the DA but didn't have a chance to incorporate it in with their lessons before Umbitch caught them. Harry smirked remembering how the Death Eaters had been prepared for spells, not aerial assaults with make-shift Molotov explosives, he'd been very right in assuming they wouldn't know what to do, honestly, the average Death Eater had the same amount of common sense as a Gryffindor second year! Harry had been mightily pleased when his first firebomb shattered right into Bellatrix Lestrange's face, oh it wouldn't kill her it would just leave her so scarred and burned that even Magic couldn't do a damn thing to help. That was enough for Harry right about then. That had been almost 4-hours ago, since then he'd been dodging around the neighbour-hood, picking off Death Eaters one by one, using sneak attacks and stealth to catch them off guard and deal with one on their own.
4-hours of near constant running and hiding and fighting.
Where was the Order?
Where was the Ministry?
Better yet, why had the Death Eaters picked tonight of all nights, to attack now?
It just wasn't making any sense; Voldemort shouldn't have even been able to breech the blood-wards let alone manage to Avada Aunt Petunia and Dudley. Vernon was fair game considering how he didn't have any Evans blood so Harry wasn't all confused about why he died.
Harry opened his eyes and looked around warily; the street was quiet, a little too quiet in Harry's opinion right about now. Tom didn't get as far as he did by being stupid, brash and impatient, by being Gryffindor. No, he got where he was by being very, very clever. Completely off his rocker, but very clever.
"Why, Mr Potter," Harry spin around his wand pointing at Voldemort, spell on his lips, gun pointed at Bellatrix (who Harry was pleased to note, was horribly scarred and probably blind in her left eye.) flinching against the pain that exploded in his scar. "I do believe that is the greatest compliment I have ever received." The snake-faced bastard practically cooed, Harry pulled a face, getting to his feet, no point in kneeling on the ground like an inferior if everyone could see you.
"Underestimating your opponent is the fastest way of finding yourself six feet under," he stated coolly, one eye fixed on Tom while his attention scanned the rest of the assembled Death Eaters. Harry had to smirk when he realised he'd cut their numbers down by at least a quarter on his own, it was a sad day in Jerusalem when the supposedly 'Superior Purebloods Slytherins' could be taken down so efficiently by a Halfblood Gryffindor soon-to-be-sixth year student.
Harry's eyes narrowed onto Voldemort's gleaming ruby red slits without fear, the Order wasn't coming, neither was the Ministry, either they were too chicken to come and face their demons of neglect, then they were hoping that this would be their Day of Reckoning. Harry sighed, if this was truly the night of the Final Battle, they were all screwed, already dead just still breathing. Dumbledore was wrong, love was not going to save the day, that much was obvious even to Harry, the old coot was just too far gone with age to know that love was not their final weapon.
Voldemort gave him a serpentine smile, crooked yellow teeth giving it a surreal and slightly disturbing edge that was almost more threatening than having Tom's yew wand pointed at his chest.
Whatever the Snake-faced git had been about to say was interrupted when Harry's eyes snapped to a much familiar, much despised face of Peter Pettigrew from where he'd been hiding behind Nott senior. Harry's eyes narrowed, which was probably the only warning they got before the gun in his hand gave off a loud thunderclap, Wormtail squealing in pain as he was thrown backwards, blood flying from his shoulder. A few Death Eaters swore in alarm, not having expected a display of such brutality from the so called 'Child of Light', Dumbledore's Gryffindor Golden boy, the Golden Pawn, the Boy-Who-Lived. While several other Death Eaters attacked, summoning Harry's wand, binding him with steel cables and levitating him off the ground before he could attack again.
There was a moment of silence which Harry broke, "He dead?"
Voldemort sniffed glancing over his shoulder nonchalantly, much the same way as Harry, "No, not yet."
"Shame," Harry stated with a Slytherin worthy sneer, ignoring the look of intense surprise on Severus Snape's face from where he was hidden at the back of the group of Death Eaters. "Quite frankly, it is beyond me why you would keep the useless lump of Hippogriff turd around. All he does is take up air and make other Death Eaters like Malfoy and Lestrange feel intelligent from his severe lack of intelligence."
Voldemort laughed in surprise, giving Harry an appraising look, as if reassessing him.
'Let him. I'm dead anyway, As long as I take Wormtail with me all's good. Neville can have Bellatrix, he's had over 15-years to plan his happy time with the Batty Bitch,' he thought, allowing Voldemort to read the thoughts like a crane fly skimming across his mind before striking out with a ball of his memory on the Cruciatus, shoving it down their Curse Scar link straight into Tommy-Boy's mind. Voldemort hissed in pain and alarm as Harry's memory recreated the pain in the older man's mind, before he started laughing.
"Oh very well played Mr Potter! Very good! You would have made a fine Slytherin," he exclaimed almost giddily, "You possess many of the traits that Salazar prized above all others, cunning, intelligence, ambition, bravery and Slytherin's own Dark Gift!"
Harry cut the Dark Lord off with a sharp snarl, "SsS I swear to you, if you even try to talk me into joining you, I will reveal what you are to every one of your precious Death Nibblers. SsS" He snarled in Parselmouth, eyes narrowed with a promise. Voldemort paused, lips pursed together as he eyed Harry, an ugly expression twisted upon his features before it relaxed into what would have been a charming smile –if Voldemort had still been the handsome, charming Slytherin Prefect he was in Hogwarts.
"Very well. But we could have been great together, you and I." Harry's eyes narrowed, "No matter, I never did like sharing anyway. It matters not whether you live or die now."
Harry snorted before he realised they were moving and he was being levitated along as they travelled back towards where the ruins of Number 4 were crumbling.
"You mean you didn't come here tonight just to kill me? Oh Voldie, I'm hurt! There's another man isn't there? Isn't there!? How could you!?" he exclaimed dramatically pretending to cry, prompting Death Eaters to bristle –wishing they could hex the annoying brat who dared mock their lord. He didn't believe Voldemort for a moment, he was going to die and he planned on making his last moments as annoying as he humanly could. Voldemort however just laughed at him, as if he were a particularly entertaining pet or small child, looking at him in a manner which made Harry wish to hex the expression off the git's face even as growing threads and worms and weights of unease began to settle in his gut.
Harry mentally growled, not for the first time regretting that he never really paid attention or applied himself in Snape's Occlumency classes. Though to be truthful, Dumbledore should have foreseen Harry's hatred of the Potions Professor and trained him himself, if only to prevent Harry's desire to hex the greasy haired git.
Unease and anxiousness curled uncomfortably in his stomach, tingles of what Harry could identify as fear –repressed and ignored, flicking up and down his skin like particularly irritating fleas. What did he mean 'It matters not whether you live or die' of course it mattered whether Harry lived or died! He was the only one capable of killing the ugly bastard! The Prophesy said so: Neither can live, while the other survives. It definitely sounded like it mattered!
"I have, of course, been unable to view the full Prophesy due to the continuous meddling of that old fool you call a headmaster, your companions and, most noticeably, you," the Dark Lord announced, shooting Harry a look of intense fury causing his scar to split and ooze out a fast torrent of crimson while Harry gritted his teeth against a scream/whimper of pain. "And until I am vanquished, you and your companions will not cease to keep its contents secret and get in the way of my every move. And since I know the Prophesy has something to do with you, I cannot risk destroying you completely.
"Which is where our attack upon your home comes into my plan, young Harry Potter," he crowed, grinning like the lunatic Harry knew he was. "For tonight is the one night where the planets align, all of them, for three galaxies over." The red eyed Lord was practically giddy at this point, which only further solidified Harry's anxiousness and unease.
"Glad to see you've been taking astronomy lessons from the Centaurs, or is this something that you dredged up from your memories of Hogwarts? Little out of date wouldn't you say?" Harry asked sarcastically, Voldemort narrowed his eyes on him before smirking – a look that reminded Harry instantly of Snape. So that was where that oh-so-annoying evil smirk came from.
"I wouldn't expect a mere Gryffindor to know the significance of this night," Voldemort smirked toothily, red eyes gleaming, "Why do you think Dumbledore and the Ministry have not yet stormed the area?"
"Because they're either cowards or they're hoping that I'll be able to kill you. Frankly, if they think this is their Judgement day, then we're all already dead, just still breathing."
Voldemort laughed, "Oh they're all dead alright, but you. I don't intend to even attempt doing away with you until I know the full contents of that Prophesy, call it prudent planning if you will. I want my victory assured, not endangered; ignorance was possibly the greatest key to my downfall the last time. I don't intend to make the same mistake twice.
"I intend to send you far away tonight Potter. Using an ancient, powerful, obscure Apparation ritual. This was used a number of millennia ago, before the first Ice Ages, back when Muggles were the bumbling cavemen that their appearance suggested. It was originally used to send evil witches and wizards, magical creatures incapable of being controlled or sealed away to a distant planet. Only available once every 666-years when the planets move just enough to allow a clear pathway through the stars to the planet of their choice," Voldemort explained as they finally reached the ruins of Harry's old residence.
The house had been levelled, the ground flattened using a large stone of green rock, it looked almost like green amber in its clarity and texture. Harry had no idea what material it was, and it frankly creeped him out all the more, maybe Tom's theory of the Trans-galactic Apparation had a little more substance to it than Harry was willing to admit. The area was lit up with floating candles, the green amber having a large, elegant and detailed array etched onto its surface, there were three arrays, each linked with odd crisscrossing patterns with symbols around the edges of the entire array. Symbols that looked a lot like Chinese to Harry.
Harry sneered, maybe if he was lucky, Voldemort might be persuaded into killing him instead of sending him away like this. It would make sense, send him where he couldn't cause any trouble and the Prophesy wouldn't matter.
'Power the Dark Lord knows not' pshaw, yeah right. The power of Love? Anyone who's seen a Disney Movie knows that Love conquers all, which he might add is absolute bollocks, Tom grew up in a Muggle Orphanage; he had obviously heard of love and knew about it, even if he disdained it.
"Oh yes, Capital idea Tom. Can't beat me so you send me off to some far off planet where I can't bother you. I guess that Gryffindor theory about Slytherins being cowards has finally been proved without a doubt," he sneered.
"SILENCE!! HOW DARE YOU SPEAK TO THE DARK LORD WITH SUCH DISRESPECT MUDBLOOD BRAT! CRUCIO!!" Bellatrix shrieked, wand throwing the unforgivable against Harry's body. If he hadn't been concentrating on the pain, Harry would have realised that while Bella may have been something in the Power department, she had serious commitment and imagination issues. Harry would have had more fun in Professor Binn's class while being tortured instead of under Bella's constant monotonic crucios. At least if Binns was torturing him, he would use some of those lovely methods the Goblins had been so fond of.
"Bella," Voldemort purred darkly, just edging his voice with a touch of threat, enough for the woman to drop the curse and hastily prostate herself at the Dark Lord's feet wailing apologies for going against his orders all the while justifying her torturing of Harry because he was insulting the Dark Lord.
Harry, however, was completely ignoring the woman – much like Voldemort, and pulling his magic back into him to heal some of the damage done to his nerves via the Cruciatus. He sniffed, throwing a disgusted and pitying glance at Bellatrix, once a proud witch, now she threw herself at the feet of hypocritical madman.
There was little chance of escape, Harry realised as he was levitated onto the green amber platform, noticing with sick realisation that Aunt Petunia wasn't dead, neither was Dudley and both were sat on one of the arrays leaving two empty. One was for Harry, but who was the other one for?
He swallowed, his wand was in Voldemort's pocket, he'd run out of Molotovs at least 2 hours ago, his gun had been left where they'd caught him – none of the Death Eaters knew how to use it and Harry hadn't been using it much because it both kicked like a mule and let off a bang even louder than a firework. Wandless magic was a little beyond him at the moment and Harry's Invisibility Cloak had snagged on a tree somewhere while he'd been running – none of the Death Eaters had seen or taken the cloak and Harry kept the map in his pocket. His only chance was accidental magic but that would only work if he was terrified, and at the moment...
He was resigned to dying or disappearing.
He sighed as he was levitated into one of the empty arrays, maybe he could attain some measure of peace in this new planet. Sure, the thought of this one been torn apart by darkness would eat away at him, keep him awake at night, give him nightmares. But hopefully...maybe...he could have some peace. After all, hadn't he given the Wizarding world enough? He killed their Dark Lord, it wasn't his fault if they fell into compliance and ignorance, he'd even kept the maniacal old bastard from coming back for a good few years, he'd even put up with the whole Political punch bag thing!
Hadn't he given them enough?
Harry sighed again and tilted his head as Voldemort stepped up to him, a knife of the same material Harry was stood on in his hand. It was already dripping with blood Harry noticed, his eyes flicking over to where Aunt Petunia and Dudley were slowly bleeding to death in their array. Wrists sliced into bloody ribbons along with the veins in the crook of their arms, the backs of their knees and ankles and three main ones across their waists and backs. The etched markings were filling with his relatives' blood, small rivulets racing out around the whole slab of green amber, Harry swallowed suddenly realising that the blood wasn't only just flowing along the etched in grooves, but also in patterns that weren't inscribed upon the stone. Seeping through and into veins of the stone like...poison or ink through someone's wrist or a rose petal.
And then Voldemort sliced into Harry's wrist, not deeply like Aunt Petunia and Dudley who would bleed to death under the Body bind curse that kept them from moving as their lives bled away. But enough so that Harry's blood dribbled onto his own array, lightning it up with a vicious white light.
Voldemort took a step back and stood in the final array, the knife in his hand slicing into his own wrist, the array at his feet glowing with a light drinking darkness.
"(/Evocem vos, minstrae Voldemort.\)"
Harry began to panic as Voldemort's words not only echoed around the stone silent street, but also in his own head. He choked, trying to wrestle off the bindings of white light that wrapped around his arms and legs and magic, preventing him from escaping the ritual.
He ignored half of what Voldemort was saying, suddenly terrified as he lashed out with magic, trying to loosen his bindings, escape, maybe rescue Aunt Petunia and Dudley show them that he wasn't all bad, that witches and wizards were good and bad, just like other people.
Oh Merlin, what was he going to do? Easy, he couldn't do anything.
A vi ci-
He didn't understand anything that Voldemort was saying, well, he understood that 'A vi ci' was the beginning of an incantation for a spell called the Endless hell, but he had no idea what it was. 'Fax' was falling star and 'virude' was for green... 'cometes' was comet but what did that have to do with where ever it was Harry was going?
He was so panicked he missed the majority of what was being invoked, catching only single words, syllables, his head was beginning to swim with pain and fear. Voldemort was concentrating upon the ritual instead of holding the pain of their scar link at bay; his glee and anticipation were like knives across his skin and ice in his gut.
Harry James Potter
A vi ci
Harry screamed this time, his voice screaming out in harmony with Aunt Petunia and Dudley, his mind suddenly going completely blank and clean and he realised why they were there.
His blood relatives, Harry wasn't to die, but they needed to fill the stone with blood. They were meant to die.
Light claimed him and Harry knew no more of Earth.
Muahah, that's it for Chapter numero uno, to find out what happened to Harry, you'll just have to stick around and wait for me to type the next bit and tell you. Flight of the Raven will be updated soon.
Review please! I'd really like to hear your thoughts.