Well, I'm proud of myself. This time I didn't make everyone wait almost a year. I'm still sorry about that by the way. Anyway, this chapter is mainly information, so sorry about that. But I had to write it so you guys won't look at me in utter bewilderment later on because I've lost you. The good news is you'll find out who Obsidian is finally.

Anyway, onto the chapter.



Serafious felt the moment Harry's presence lifted as he fainted. Instinctively Orbing to where his young charge was he caught him before he hit the ground and lifted him into his arms before raising his head and looking back up at the sky.

So, Obsidian was actually able to free the rest of his race this time. That complicated things. Especially if he was able to do it so quickly. Fortunately, it should take the Dark Elves a while to become back in tune with their Black Magic, so at the moment only Obsidian was the major threat. And if they managed to seal the Dark Elves back into an everlasting sleep before they fully regained their power, they could avoid Apocalypse. No pressure, of course.

Serafious sighed and remembered his surprise when he had laid his eyes on the Ice General, Malikie. But then again he shouldn't have been surprised. Obsidian knew of his history with the ice Dark Elf, about how Malikie was always the one who managed to escape him and death again and again. Come to think of, Obsidian had probably been the one to purposely send Malikie to mock Serafious and his inability to catch and kill the powerful General.

Resisting the urge to sigh again, Serafious looked around at the others in the clearing. His eyes immediately landed on Kiryan where she was kneeling next to an unconscious man at the base of a tree. At the sight of her relief fulled him. Good, she was safe, if probably a little frustrated at losing against Malikie. He couldn't fault her though, for she had never met the Ice General before, nor knew his reputation.

His eyes then raised and looked over the others. The man that Kiryan was examining probably had a few broken bones and a broken spine, but was fortunately still breathing. The werewolf was definitely worse for wear and was presently on his hands and knees on the ground, probably trying to regain control over his wolf. But most of his wounds were external bleeding, so as long as they got him patched up he should be fine.

Serafious then looked at the red haired boy standing next to the werewolf holding the young Sable, Rowan, in his arms. Rowan would probably have bruising around the neck, but appeared to be okay and the red haired boy had a couple of bruises where he had hit the ground in his many falls, but was otherwise unharmed.

The boy, or Ron as Serafious's mind supplied when he lightly touched the boy's mind, had surprised him. Needless to say he had been as startled by Ron hitting Arnious as the Dark Elf had been. One would think he would have gone running and screaming through the forest as soon as there was an opening, not going behind enemy lines and delivering a weakening blow.

Then again, he was Harry's friend, which in itself explained a lot.

Serafious then looked down at Harry himself. It was no surprise that the young Lestran was unconscious. After all, where all the rest of them were fighting physically, Harry was attacking mentally, which took more power and concentration, especially against beings with powerful minds like the Dark Elves. Even for someone on the Martis level.

"Do you have control?" Serafious suddenly asked in the silent clearing, his gaze centered on the kneeling werewolf. The sudden voice made every conscious jump and look at him, including the werewolf, who's eyes were now an even brown.

"Yes, I believe so." the werewolf... no, Remus, according to Ron's mind, answered before painfully pulling himself to his feet. "Is Sirius okay?"

"For the most part and surprisingly, yes." Kiryan answered before sighing and standing, her hand going to her right arm where the wound caused by Malikie's ice spear was still bleeding. "Knowing what we were against, I believe we got off easily."

Serafious nodded before turning to Ron, Harry still unconscious in his arms, and nodded toward Sirius to levitate him. "So, where is the nearest medical center?"



The first thing Harry noticed when he came to was that his entire body felt like it had been hit by a two-by-four. The second thing was that he was not alone.

"Gees, I leave you two alone for an entire day and this happens." a female voice said not too far from him. It took him a minute to identify it as Hermione's voice.

"It's not our fault. They attacked us, remember?" That was Ron.

Wait, attacked? Then everything that happened came back and Harry shot upright, causing his side to pulse in pain.

"Sirius! What happened to him, is he okay?" Harry said opening his eyes and fighting down the nausea. The surprised faces of Ron and Hermione swam into view, before Madam Promphey tutted and rushed over to push Harry back onto the bed. Then Remus's face came into view and he gave Harry a tired smile.

"Sirius is fine right now. His spine and left arm were broken, but with a few potions and plenty of rest he was up and about as if nothing had happened. The one we were really worried about was you. When you went down when those two creatures disappeared, you really worried us."

"What do you mean? What happened?" Harry said, trying to remember. Truth be told when the Dark Elves had vanished and everyone was safe he kind of blacked out.

"To put it bluntly, you fainted." Ron said, walking over to them and sitting at the end of Harry's bed. "It's a good thing your guardian, Serafious, was still there. He caught you when you fell unconscious and between him, me, and Kestrel, who had appeared a little after you fainted, we were able to get you, Sirius, Remus, Rowan, and Kiryan back to the castle. It was kinda funny to see the professors faces when we walked through the door all bloody and carrying you guys. I'm pretty sure Madam Promphey almost had a heart attack when she saw us."

"Well, I'm glad someone got some amusement out of it, Ron." Hermione said folding her arms and glaring at him. "When I heard you guys were all in the infirmary, I almost had a coronary. Do you know how worried I was?"

"But we're all fine." Ron said defensively.

"All the same." A voice cut in and Harry turned to see Serafious walking toward then, wiping his hands on a towel. "You shouldn't have let your guard down enough to be caught by surprise. I've already given Kiryan this lecture, so it's plain to say I'm disappointed in both of you. From what I saw in your friend's memory" at this he indicated to Ron "There were several instances where you would have been captured or killed if the werewolf, Animagus, or myself hadn't interfered. Your lucky I was in the area and felt the battle of conflicting magics."

Harry looked down. "Yeah, I know. But those guys were strong, stronger then any opponent I've been against."

Serafious nodded. "The Dark Elves were a strong and powerful race before they were sealed away. It only makes sense that now that they are released that they have retained most of their powers. It's fortunate they can't launch an attack like that again for some time now."

At this Ron gave the Ancient a confused look. "Why not?"

"Because due to magic contracts that bind them, due to the type of power they wield, only a few are allowed in the human plain of existence for a certain amount of time. And from the magics they used in your fight, I'm betting those three used up a good amount. So it will probably be a while before any Dark Elf can leave their realm and enter this one."

"Thank you who ever made that rule. I don't think we could survive it if they were able to organize attacks like that one every day." Ron said leaning back on his hands. Harry couldn't help but agree.

At that moment Dumbledore, James, Chase, Snape, Flickwick, and McGonagall chose that moment to enter the room with a tired looking Sirius and a frustrated Kiryan on their heels. However, upon seeing Harry's conscious form Kiryan's eyes lit up and she rushed over to him with a similarly relieved Sirius.

The teachers, however, seemed content to give Serafious and, consequently, Harry, a wide birth at the moment. Harry couldn't blame them upon feeling the aggravated power radiating off the Ancient at the moment.

Dumbledore then cleared his throat. "It's good to see you up, Mr. Halisio. How do you feel?"

"Like I was attacked by a Dark Elf." Harry said flatly before looking up at Serafious. "What was that all about by the way?"

Serafious sighed. "That was another attempt to upset me. It seems that Obsidian wanted to strike another blow against me while I was trying to recover from the one with Master Kaden."

At Obsidian's name Kiryan gave a startled noise and swirled toward Serafious before promptly sitting on Harry's bed. "I was hoping I was wrong and he wasn't the one behind this. Is it really him?"

By now everyone in the room were looking at the two magical beings in confusion, even Harry.

"Who's Obsidian?" Harry asked, looking between Kiryan and Serafious.

"Obsidian is a Dark Elf, well the Prince of the Dark Elves to be more specific. He was also the only Dark Elf that wasn't sealed into eternal sleep a thousand years ago."

"Why not? It sounds to me that if you had sealed him away in the first place, you wouldn't be in this mess." McGonagall said folding her arms. Serafious turned his gaze to her and she flinched.

"If we had sealed him as well, the spell wouldn't have worked." At everyone's confused looks he went on. "In order for the Seal to work one of the race that you are sealing needs to exist outside of it, as a constant power source if you will, because they're bound to the Seal in order for it to stay effective. Consequently, you can't kill the Holder, as the person to whom the Seal is bound to is referred to as, because if the Holder dies, the Seal if broken and those sleeping, released."

"Why does the Holder have to be a Dark Elf? Why couldn't you do it?" Remus asked.

"Because the Seal needs to be able to pull from the exact power in which it is containing. In this case, Dark Elf magic and Black Magic. Because Dark Elves are the only ones with their type of magic, you need a Dark Elf Holder."

"But why Obsidian? Why not a Dark Elf you could easily control?" Hermione asked.

"Because Obsidian is their Prince and those of the royal family have the 'purist' form of their magic. If we had used another Dark Elf not of the Royal Family the Seal would have eventually cracked and broken because the power output by the Holder would have been insufficient."

"But that still doesn't explain why Obsidian is going after you specifically." Harry said pulling his knees forward and resting his chin on them. Truthfully he didn't like the idea of anyone going after Serafious.

Serafious sighed. "That's a little more complicated. You know how Dark Elves have a natural affinity to Black Magic, yes?" At this Harry, Ron, and Hermione (Harry had explained it to them via the link only moments ago when it was first mentioned) nodded while everyone else looked confused. Serafious ignored the others and focused on Harry. "That's because the Dark Elves created it, like the Natural Elves created White Magic. Or at least the bases of the branches, seeing as they have now expanded a lot since then. But Black Magic is the most violent and destructive magic in existence and because of this any of those with a nature affinity to it are driven to mimic it."

"They go insane." Hermione breathed looking shocked.

"It depends on your definition of insanity. In most cases they give up what I believe is referred to as a conscience. They no longer feel emotions such as guilt or pity, or even comradery or forgiveness. They truly become the ultimate killers and predators."

At the word 'predator' Ron shivered. "I don't suppose you know what they eat, do you?" "That's easy; blood, and meat from time to time. They're not really picky."

"Then how come Malikie said that Ron smelled disgusting?" Harry asked. Ron blushed and refused to meet anyone's eye.

"Oh, that's because Malikie is a General. I'm talking about the vast majority of Dark Elves, like Arnious and his dead companion. You see, the Dark Elves are sorted into a type of Cast System if you will. Most are like Arnious; reptilian looking with an insatiable hunger. They're not too smart, but are powerful and deadly all the same. I guess these would be the ones you would refer to as insane."

"As you go up the cast system the Dark Elves become more humanoid and deadly because the higher up they are, the more they control their powers instead of their powers controlling them. At the bottom are the 'Privates' as they refer to them, or 'canon fodder' as we refer to them. Then moving up there are the Corporals, then Sergeants, then Warrants, then Lieutenants, then Captains, then Majors, then Colonels, then Generals."

"Sounds like the muggle army." Hermione said.

"Now you know where the muggles got it from." Serafious said dryly. "Anyway, the Generals are the rank right below the Royal Family, which makes them the second most powerful type of Dark Elf. Generals also tend to not only be fluent with the Dark Elf power and Black Magic, but with a certain element, in which their power and appearance take after."

"Like Malikie and ice." Harry said. Serafious nodded.

"You noticed that then. Yes, Malikie's element is ice."

"Anyway, back onto Obsidian." Harry said. Serafious went back to being serious.

"Well, as you know Obsidian is of Royal blood, so consequently it would take him longer to fall under the 'insanity' of the Black Magic. So a thousand years ago he was still 'sane' for the most part, even though he had already lived a couple thousand years by then. So knowing the destructive nature of his people, he agreed to let the High Council, that's the council made up of all magical beings, use him as the Holder of the Seal and send his people into eternal slumber."

"Okay, I'm lost. If he agreed to let them use him as the Holder and seal his own people, then why would he release them? And why is he mad at you?"

"That's because of what happened afterwards. It was after the sealing that I met him. The Council had assigned him to Master Kaden in the hopes that with the constant presence of White Magic, the influence of the Black Magic would diminish, as would his chances of going 'insane'. At the time I was also Kaden's apprentice, and since Obsidian and I were the only apprentices that Kaden had, we spent a lot of time together and quickly became good friends."

"However, much to the Council's displeasure, the White Magic was only able to hold off the Black Magic for 942 years. Fifty-eight years ago Obsidian finally fell to the curse of his people and lost all emotion. Due to this, he became twisted, and sought to free his people once more, swaying many to his cause saying the world would be richer with the Dark Elves in it."

Serafious paused then looked down at the clothe in his hands. "Needless to say it was a very long and bloody war that lasted about eight years. The final battle finally took place at Abicus Hill, which lasted for days. Thousands lost their lives at that hill. It was there that I realized what I had to do. You see, I had known Obsidian for centuries and he was like a brother to me. And even though he had submitted to the Black Magic, I had still foolishly held on to the hope that my friend would come back. But battle made me realize that, that was not going to happen and that I had to stop him to stop the senseless killing."

As Serafious paused again Kiryan nodded. "I remember that, when you came back to the Council with that crazy idea of yours. I also recall that was the first time we met. I remember thinking that you and your idea were so reckless and foolish that they might actually work."

Serafious gave a small smile. "Yes, it was rather foolish. I'm not going to get into detail about it, but the end result was using my connection with Obsidian to send him into the Void."

"The Void?"

The place of eternal Nothingness. It's said to be the place were everything began, and exists between time and space. But it was the only option we had left. After all, we still needed Obsidian to be alive in order for the Seal to continue to exist."

"Obsidian spent the last 50 years in the Void, but was somehow able to escape it five days ago. And now he wants revenge against me, because I was the key to his imprisonment. He wants to take from my life what I took from his; happiness, or his equivalent of it anyway. In other words, Harry and Kiryan."

"Will he attack the school or near it again to get to Harry?" McGonagall demanded seriously.

"No. Obsidian despises being repetitive, so he will not attack the school again, even if Harry is here. But I have no doubt he'll try to capture Harry as soon as he leaves. But that won't happen for a good while now since Malikie used up a lot of their time in this dimension. I'd give it a half a year to a year until they can act again."

As Serafious finished Harry sighed and leaned down to rub his forehead. Then something occurred to him and he looked back up at Serafious. "What I don't get is how this Obsidian was able to defeat Master Kaden. I mean, Kaden was a Master! Someone who's reached Nexis Level! And he was very proficient at White magic too! How could he have been beaten?"

Serafious sighed and placed the clothe still in his hands on a table near him. "Just because one reaches Nexis doesn't mean they are immune to failure. But that is not why Kaden lost." At this Serafious shot a meaningful look at Harry. "Kaden lost because it was his Leeway Time."

Harry had to take a moment for this to process before his eyes widened. Beside him he heard Kiryan gasp in recognition before she promptly stood up from his bed and walked over to slump into the chair next to his bed and put her head into her hands. At her movement everyone else in the room looked at the three magical creatures in confusion.

Finally it was Ron who spoke up. "Leeway Time? What is that? What do you mean?"

Harry opened his mouth to answer but surprisingly it was Kiryan that answered. "Leeway Time is the one weakness that all those who reach Nexis possess." She said raising her head and wiping away her tears with the back of her hand.

"Nexis?" Dumbledore asked, but his voice intonation indicated he demanded an answer.

"The highest level on the Power Scale." Harry informed them. At their blank stares he sighed. Wizards really were clueless. Across from him Serafious heaved an audible sigh and switched into what Harry had dubbed his 'Teacher mode' when he was a kid.

"Magic is categorized in a five level sequence called the Power Scale. The five Levels are Artis, Catis, Martis, Baratis, and Nexis, respectfully. All beings with magic can be categorized in one of these Levels. You understand so far?" Serafious asked, acting as if he was in a classroom giving a lecture. Although all things considered and with his current audience, he might as well be. At everyone's nod he continued.

"Artis is the lowest and most common level on magic. This is where your 'light' and 'dark' reside. Consequently and needless to say the majority of wizards never pass this Level."

"And why not? Are you saying we're weak compared to you?" Chase blurted angrily and glared at the Ancient. That is until said Ancient leveled him with an even look which he promptly looked away from.

"In all bluntness, yes."Serafious said flatly, ignoring some of the nasty looks shot at him as if they didn't matter. Although, knowing the Ancient, they probably didn't. "But that is due to the small nature of the cores that wizards tend to possess."

At this Hermione's head shot up. "Wait, wizard's have small cores?"

"Compared to most magical beings, yes." Serafious said, ignoring James who loudly scoffed.

"But why is that?" Hermione urged.

"Ignore him, he's just trying to make himself look smart and powerful." James said, then opened his mouth to say something else before his eyes went wide when nothing came out. He then clutched at his throat as if it were the problem. Serafious then went on as if James hadn't spoken, though Harry had a feeling the Ancient was the reason for James losing his voice.

"The reason is still much debated till this day. But one of the most plausible excuses is that of the tools in which wizard's use to direct magic."

"Wands." Harry breathed. Serafious inclined his head.

"Why wands?" Remus asked carefully.

"Because wands are not made from the wizard's themselves, or have anything personally from the wizard as a core. Nor are they sentient as Staffs tend to be, which are why Staffs are such powerful conductors; they not only direct your power, they amplify it."

Serafious paused for a second to let this sink in before continuing. "Consequently, because wand cores are made from parts of magical creatures, the wand is only able to conduct the amount of magic the creature had in its possession before the sample was taken. And from what I've seen and know about wand cores, the creatures that are used are usually not that powerful, with the exception of the occasional Phoenix. Because of this, a wand can only conduct a certain amount of magic at a time, and even then it's forced. Therefore, in order to remedy this situation, in every new generation the wizard's cores shrunk so that they would not be overpowering their wand's cores, therefore leading to wizard's magical cores being small. Kind of like evolution if you would, or adapting to one's environment. The action was instinctual in order to preserve the magic itself. After all, if you continually overpowered you directing tool it would eventually lead to a destructive backlash against your magic."

"I say we have a nation wide declaration that everyone snap their wands." Ron murmured.

"Unfortunately, that's no longer an option." Kiryan said tucking a strand of her white hair behind her ear. "Because now wizard's cores are so small that they need wands in order to preform any type of magic. That's why 'wandless' magic as you call it is so rare amongst wizards. Because now not many wizarding cores are large enough to be accessed without a wand. Or without the magical touch of the creatures who's parts reside in a wands core."

"Which promptly makes us the bottom of the magical food chain." Hermione murmured aloud.

"Caught that did you." Sirius said dryly.

"Sounds like a crock of bull to me." Chase suddenly declared. "To me it sounds like the 'magical beings' are just trying to make themselves sound superior."

"Hold your tongue Mr. Potter and that's 10 points from Gryffindor for mocking a guest." Snape suddenly snapped before turning toward Serafious. "I beg your pardon, Lord Serafious. Could you please continue?"

Harry blinked at the apologetic tone of his usually snarly Professor before mentally shrugging. 'His vampiric instincts must be strong after all if he recognizes Serafious for who and what he is. Imagine that.'

Serafious gave Snape a measured and slightly amused look before continuing.

"Anyway, back on the subject of the Power Levels. As I have said before, many, especially wizards, tend to never get past this level. Fortunately the Artis level is vast, so don't be too upset with yourselves. Next is the Level Catis where– "

"Wait, how do you know when you cross over into another Level?" Remus cut in, then looked down apologetically when the Ancient turned toward him. Serafious didn't seem offended though and answered.

"You reach what we call a 'Threshold'. Thresholds are pretty much great surges of magic swarming into your core and expanding it so that it can withhold the magics of the next level."

"So if we reach a Threshold we can enlarge our cores?" Ron repeated excitedly. Serafious hummed.

"Actually it depends. You see your core has to be large enough in the first place to reach the Threshold. And seeing the size of most wizarding cores..."

"Most will never be strong enough to ever get there." Hermione finished dejectedly. Then she paused "But wait, how will you know when you reach a Threshold?"

At that Serafious gave a slow smile. "Oh, you'll know. Trust me, you'll know."

"Why?" Sirius asked slowly.

"Because it is the most gratifying and pleasurable feeling you will ever experience. It's so powerful that it's highly addictive and some beings spend their entire lives trying to recreate the feeling." Kiryan answered.

"So that's what that was. A Threshold." Dumbledore suddenly murmured, causing many to look at him in surprise.

"Headmaster, you know what he's talking about?" Flitwick asked. Dumbledore looked up in surprise before seeming to realize he had spoken aloud.

"Yes, I have experienced a Threshold before. Up until now, however, I didn't know what it was." Dumbledore answered looking curiously from Serafious to Kiryan.

"Yes, I noticed you were on the Catis Level as soon as I saw you." Serafious said inclining his head. "Catis is the second Power Level, otherwise known as the Level of the Mind. This level focuses on the arts of Mind Magic."

"Like Occlumency." Hermione put in looking excited. Serafious paused.

"Not really. Occlumency, as you put it, is merely using your core magic to shield and organize your mind. It has nothing to do with the actual power and magics of your mind. Same thing with Legemency; It's your core magic that reaches into another person's mind and copies the memories for your viewing. But, as I'm sure you've noticed, they tend to view the memory as you copy it."

"And Penceives?" Sirius asked offhandedly.

Serafious shrugged. "Same thing; takes the memory, copies it, and places it in a device others can use to view it."

"Then how come you don't remember the memory when it's in a Penseive?" Remus asked curiously.

"Because your mind's reflexive reaction to the copying on the memory. You subconsciously think of your memories as private, so when you or someone else copy the memory, your mind automatically pushes it to the back and out of harms way. Therefore, it's like it's not there, or very faint. But when the copy is placed back, as with a Penceive, or is no longer being viewed, as with someone using a Legemency, you subconsciously think it's save and the memory is pushed back to the forefront of your consciousness."

There was a silence as people absorbed this before Serafious continued.

"Anyway, the Catis Level is the actual Mind Magics. These magics include the actual removing, destroying, and replacing of the memories as well as the protection of the mind. You even can read minds without copying the memory, and even remove their memory and make it your own. This is also the level that you can achieve full body possession, where you actually become the person. I wouldn't recommend it though because you tend to get in trouble. A long time ago some beings used this method to jump from one body to another in order to gain new powers. Unfortunately they had to destroy the mind of the person who originally owned the body and this led to complications and an uproar. So full possession has been banded. However you can still do regular possession as long as you don't kill the person your possessing."

"But that's barbaric! How can they still allow that?" Hermione exclaimed.

"Mainly it's used to uphold the law." At everyone's confused look her elaborated. "Think about it. When you fully possess someone you know everything they know. That way there are no false charges and no criminals worming their way out of anything. It's fool proof."

"Oh, I get it. That way no one can claim they are under the Imperious and get out of trouble." Sirius said before flashing his teeth in a grin. "I'm starting to like this level."

"Also in Catis is where you will have access to you Mindscapes, places in the center-most part of your mind that seems to take an actual form and be an actual place. In your Mindscapes you tend to take a seemingly physical form, as if you are actually there. You can also trap other people's, intruders or ones you overpower and drag into your own, minds in your Mindscapes if you manipulate a part of it into, say, a inescapable labyrinth. Then the person's mind will be trapped there until you deem it ft to release them. Really handy for keeping intruders."

"Remind me to never piss off anyone proficient in that Level." Sirius murmured. Serafious looked at him in amusement.

"Then you better be careful around Harry."

"Okay... wait, Harry you're in Catis?" Sirius asked looking at Harry who was innocently regarding the ceiling.

"Now, now, it is impolite to ask someone their Level if you don't already know or can feel it. Some beings are really touchy about what level they are on, or how far along that level they at." Serafious chastised.

"Are you one of those people?" Hermione asked curiously. Serafious flashed her a devilish smile.

"No, I willing admit I'm on the Nexis Level. As to how far along that level... who knows." Serafious said shrugging.

"Nexis?" Hermione ask.

"I'm getting there." Serafious said patiently. "Now onward. The next level is Martis, the third Level. This level is known for having a large variety of magics but is otherwise known as the Directionaless Level."

"Directionaless Level?" Ron said as if trying to wrap his mouth around the words. "Why is it called that?"

"Because the magic in the level needs no means to direct it."

"Like a wand?" Hermione asks "You said it was used to direct magic." Serafious nodded.

"Wait, you said that only wizards had to use things to direct their magic!" James said, having obviously been released from the silencing spell. Harry wished Serafious had kept it on.

"No, I said only wizards used wands. All beings except those in or above the Martis Level need to use some sort of conductor. Some use Staffs or scepters, others use runes or markings tattooed to their skin. Voiced incantations and spells can also be used as directional, as can some swords and other weapons. It really depends on the magical beings you're dealing with. Although I admit, wands are the only conductors that harm your magic, which is why all magical beings except wizards don't use them."

"Because wands are harmful can wizards use other conductors?" Hermione asked.

"It really depends on the wizard. For the majority, probably not seeing as the magic has reshaped and shrunk in order to meet the requirements of the wand and can preform no other way. Those with large magical cores however may be able to move to another conductor, perhaps a Staff or scepter seeing as they amplify and exercise your magic until it becomes 'healthy'."

"At any rate, Martis is the Level where you don't need a directional at all, which I believe you refer as 'wandless and wordless' magic, and this magic is controlled by the will alone. You can use this magic with any part of your body, but it is most commonly used through the hands with simple flicking gestures."

Harry had turned and looked at Hermione as Serafious said this and waited. As he suspected it didn't take long for her eyes to light up and excitement to fill the bond.

"Of course! That what you used isn't it, Harry? When you were fighting the troll all you used were two simple gestures with your hand! You can use Directionaless Magic... but that means you're on the Martis Level!" Hermione sent him through the bond. Harry met her eyes and inclined his head slightly with a small smile. Hermione gazed at him in astonishment.

"Examples of this magic," Serafious continued, glancing between the two kids, probably aware of there being some type of communication but unaware of what was being said. "Are Elemental Magic, the ability control and manipulate the elements like air, ice, fire, light, etc; 'String' Magic, the ability to create shields and barriers by weaving together the runes that create magic; and Empathy, the ability to sense other beings magic and emotions. Also included in this category is Other Vision, which allows you to see magic in it's true form as runes and such."

"The forth level is the Baratis Level and only contains three types of magic, which gives it the name of 'The Deadly Trio Level'."

"Why the Deadly Trio Level?" Hermione asked. It seemed that she was the one asking most of the questions while everyone else was content to just listen.

"Because the three types of magic are the most dangerous, violent, and unpredictable magics in existence, with the exception of Black Magic. I'll get to that later." Serafious added as Hermione opened her mouth. She closed it and blushed.

"These magics are called Blood Magic, Soul Magic, and Necromancy or Death magic. Seeing as most of the magics use rituals to be preformed, it's needless to say this makes them highly dangerous because if you make even the smallest mistake the backlash will kill or mutilate you. There is, of course, several ways, varieties, and uses contained within these three, making the Baratis level pretty vast. Blood magic is preformed by either using your blood to draw runes, the very essence that makes up magic, onto a surface or cutting runes into yourself to enhance yourself in a certain way or such. Soul Magic is a secretive branch, and one that I am not allowed to discuss with anyone who has not reached the Baratis level, so I apologize. And lastly Necromancy is used to rise and communicate with the dead. It is also used to destroy magic in general because where magic is made of runes, death magic is kind of like voids, taking in and destroying everything around it, if not properly contained."

"And finally we have the last and most powerful level; Nexis. Nexis is made of White Magic, Black Magic, and Ancient Magic. You already have a vague idea of what Black Magic, otherwise known as 'Demon Magic', is. It's opposite is White Magic, or 'Purity Magic', which you also have a vague idea. I can't really elaborate because both are very hard to explain to anyone below Nexis, but I guess you can say both are sentient in a way. As is Ancient Magic, the third magic of Nexis and most powerful type of magic in existence. Oh, and Nexis is also known as the 'Infinite Level'. You know why?"

When no one answered he went on.

"Because there is no level beyond. You can only ever pass four Thresholds your entire life. It's because even today, after thousands of years, beings are still making new discoveries in the Nexis Level. That's why when I mentioned how far along I was in the Nexis level I couldn't be specific. No one knows how vast Nexis is, or even if it has an end. If it does, it's impossible to reach."

"But that still doesn't explain what Leeway Time is." Hermione pointed out.

"Oh yes, I'm getting ahead of myself. When a person gets to Nexis their magic is at the strongest it's going to get. And when your power is fully developed, it no longer focuses on strengthening itself. Since it can no longer do that, and for some reason your magic always has to be doing something, once every year for three days it takes a 'time out' to reorganize itself or something. No one really knows exactly what it does at that time. But this period of three days is called 'Leeway Time'. Leeway Time is when the beings of Nexis have access to only a small fraction of the power they are originally capable of. This makes them a lot weaker."

"But why does your magic do that? Why would it intentionally weaken you?"

"Some say it's a balance of power factor. Those in Nexis are pretty much the top of the magical food chain, so to speak. It is said that Leeway Time exists to keep those in Nexis in check so that they don't let the power go to their heads. After all, if you rely on power to run and enslave people, all they have to do is wait until your Leeway Time to kill you. It's a rather understandable system when you think about it."

"But if it's once a year, how did Obsidian know when to hit Kaden?"

"That's because Leeway Time is the same time every year. Once established, it can never change. In case you're wondering, Leeway Time is set on the exact day and two days after you cross the Nexis Threshold."

"Anyway, Obsidian and I were both Kaden's Apprentices for many years, so we're both well aware of when his Leeway Time is. Obsidian merely struck when he knew Kaden was at his weakest. A rather tactical move if you think about it. Kaden would have been a deadly opponent. And seeing as it will take Kaden a while to fully recover, he's going to be out of the way for a while. It's like taking a Rook off of the Chess board before the game even began; very smart indeed."



Harry sat in his bed gazing out the window and thinking. To his right Sirius was out cold and snoring while to his left Remus was also sleeping, but quietly.

After Serafious had finished explaining about Obsidian and the Five Levels of Power he had to leave to go to Kaden and check on him. Kiryan had gone with him, but not after apologizing profusely because it was obvious they would not be able to go to Alenious at this time, especially with all the upheaval Kaden's attack caused.

Harry felt bad for Ron and Hermione because they had been looking forward to it, but they both understood why the trip had to be postponed. Luckily they didn't mind spending the time at the castle. Harry sighed.

He'd make it up to them later.



"Man my neck is killing me." Rowan said as she rolled her shoulders. "It's too bad that Arnious got away. But then it's kind of a good thing because now I can get my revenge."

"From what I heard, what you and that mother hen did was rather foolish." Stephano said from the place he was laying, which was a couple of paces away from her. Currently Rowan, Stephano, Kestrel, Ebony, and Hedwig were 'stationed' under 'their' tree in front of Hogwarts near the lake. Ever since the ordeal with the Dark Elves the five familiars had been edgy and worried about their bonded.

Rowan gave Stephano a look. "Well, can you blame us? Those things were going after my kit!"

~ Being as that may, perhaps you should have thought to get us as well. Believe it or not we could have been of help too and perhaps you and the others wouldn't be in the conditions you're currently in.~ Ebony pointed out where he was coiled in the sun light. Above him Kestrel chirped her agreement and fixed the young Sable with a pointed look. Rowan's ears went back before she lifted her paw and examined it.

"Okay, okay, I get it, no need for the lectures. Next time something tries to kill everyone I'll make sure to give you a shout." Rowan said, getting up with a flick of her tail. "I don't know about you guys, but I'm going to go check on my kit." and with that Rowan turned with her tail held high and trotted away, leaving the others to exchange exasperated glances.

Rowan sighed as she pussy footed toward the front doors of Hogwarts. She knew the others were just worried about her, Harry, and his friends and family, but every time they lectured her on getting herself in trouble and not calling them, she felt that they were treating her like a kitten. Which she was not, thank you very much! She had five years under her wings! That had to count for something, right?

Caught up as she was in her thoughts, she wasn't aware of the presence behind her until two soft, gentle hands scooped her up and held her against a soft body. Rowan stilled before looking up, then her fear quickly turned from fear to curiosity when violet eyes met emerald green.

What was Lily Potter doing out here?



Lily stared at the young Sable in her arms and mentally sighed as she headed toward the castle doors. The kitten looked fine unless you knew what to look for; then the markings of a hand print could be made out of fur around the Sable's neck, along with a few small bald patches where the fur had been torn out around the neck. No doubt the winged-kitten had a horrible bruise there as well from when her neck was almost crushed.

Lily felt horrible. She should have known that something was wrong when Remus and Sirius had went by her in the hallway. Maybe if she had followed them, she could have helped them and Harry when they most needed her. And now Harry, Remus, and Sirius were in the hospital and she couldn't bring herself to go in there and see them that way.

Well, she may not have been able to help them, but at least she could help someone who had. This thought had her looking for Rowan since Hedwig was unharmed. She wasn't an accomplished healer like Madam Promphey, but she was really accomplished with Charms and could heal the bruises and bald spots on the kitten so that she wouldn't be in pain anymore.

To Lily's surprise, when she had found and picked up the Sable, she hadn't fought her at all. Harry had said that his familiars could talk and were highly intelligent, and she was definitely starting to believe him if the curious look the Sable gave her was anything to go by.

Stroking the kitten in case it felt threatened, she continued making her way through the castle until she reached the office Dumbledore had given her for her privacy. Walking in she closed her door with her foot and placed Rowan on the soft cushion on her desk the she had placed out earlier for when she found the Sable. Sitting in the chair in front of the desk she gently scratched the Sable behind her ears as she took out her wand and cast a few monitoring spells.

Sure enough the black kitten had some ugly and painful looking bruises on her neck that wrapped around the whole thing. Sighing, Lily waved her wand and canceled the spell, well aware of the wary look Rowan was regarding her with.

"I'm sorry, little one. These must hurt." Lily murmured, watching as Rowan's tail twitched at the sound of her voice. "I'm going to preform a spell that will heal them now. Your neck will probably be a little sore for a while, but there's nothing that can be done about that. But at least this way you won't be in pain every time you move it and you'll be able to swallow without pain too."

Lily didn't know what came over her to talk to the kitten. Perhaps it was because she had seen Harry do all the time and had gotten used to the fact that his familiars could understand English. All the same, her words seemed to reassure Rowan, who relaxed into the cushion and regarded her with her head tilted slightly. Taking that was a positive to continue Lily raised her wand and waved it in a pattern over the kitten, weaving healing and numbing Charms.

After she was done she noticed the kitten was more relaxed and was moving her head slightly, as if testing Lily's handy work. Lily cast another monitoring Charm and was relieved to see the bruises were shrinking into nothing and the bald patched were quickly regrowing fur.

It was when she was canceling her Charm that Chase walked in.

"Hey mom, I was wondering if you would... what is that doing here?" Chase asked, suddenly catching sight of the black fluff ball curled on the cushion on Lily's desk. Rowan regarded him with a similarly disgusted look before Lily picked her up into her arms.

"It is none of your concern, Chase." Lily said as she walked around her son, placed Rowan on her feet outside of her office door and giving her a little push before turning to Chase. "Now what is it you wanted?"



"Ah, Rowan. I was wondering when I would be seeing you." Harry said as Rowan jumped up onto the bed and waddled over the uneven surface toward him. Ron and Hermione were already sitting on the bed with him because they had been talking before Rowan had entered. By now both Remus and Sirius had been discharged from the hospital due to their injuries being physical instead of magical. Although, Sirius did get a lecture on being careful with his back for a few weeks while his spinal cord healed.

"I was with Lily." Rowan stated, making Harry raise an eyebrow and look at her weirdly. Ron and Hermione, who were both resting a hand on Harry's wrists, looked just as startled.

"Lily? As in Lily Potter? What were you doing with her?" Harry asked tilting his head.

"She picked me up in front of the doors and took me to her office. But here's the really surprising part; she actually healed me, vanishing the bruises and bald spots on my neck. She even told me she was doing it, too. It was weird, I never thought she would actually talk to one of us. And when Chase came in she finished up and just placed me out the door like she did this on a daily bases. As strange as this sounds, I think she was really upset about me being hurt."

"Now that you mention it, Lily wasn't here earlier when Serafious, Kiryan, and all the teachers were." Hermione pointed out. "Both James and Chase were, but not Lily."

"And she as been acting a little weird lately." Ron added. "Haven't you noticed she hasn't yelled at us for a while and that when she does speak to us she seems... I don't know, kind?"

Harry thought about that for a minute before shaking his head. "Let's try to figure out the actions of Lily Potter later. Right now we have to figure out a way to get me out of the hospital wing and the three of us into Hogsmead."

"Hogsmead? Why are we going to Hogsmead?" Ron asked curiously. Hermione, for once, looked just as stumped as he was. Harry grinned at both of them.

"To get some dress clothes of course. After all, in a couple of days we have a Ball to crash."



So what do you think? I tried to explain the five levels and Obsidian's past. I also skipped over writing a summary seeing as I had more people complain when I did then when I didn't. But if you want a summary of the chapter just say so in a review and I'll try to get one to you. And yes, I am going to try and have Chase's Ball the next chapter. And Voldemort will be reappearing soon too; after all, Obsidian maybe a bad guy but Voldemort is The bad guy.

Please review, they really give me motivation, especially when they contain ideas for the story. Writer's Block sucks.