Title: Worth the Wait
Authors: Serpent in the Shadows & AbeoUmbra
Warnings: Slash, blood, Were/Vamp Hybrid Harry
Disclaimer: We do not own Harry Potter or the Chronicles of Riddick
Summary: Centuries old Harry Potter is has made some sort of life for himself in the Pit of Crematoria with his makeshift Pack. That is, until a man named Riddick looks him in the eyes.
Whispers, there were always whispers in the Pit. Before the Pit there had been freedom, but that had been so long ago, and Harry feared at times that it had only been a hopeful dream. Harry smelt them then, the Pack, and the Others. Life in the Pit was simple that way - Pack was protected, kept, and lived for decades. The Others, if they were lucky, lived only for a decade
This was life in the Pit, it had never changed, until Harry, going out to feed, -as he rarely did - saw a man, and looked into his eyes and found Pack eyes looking into his own.
He wasn't sure what to make of the human that didn't really smell like one - more like animal yet still not. Harry dared not move though for the eye contact was a clear challenge and nothing had challenged his position in a long time. Alpha of the Pack was his and he had protected them for as long as he could remember. Even now he could hear their delight in the flesh of the Others they devoured and rejoiced in their simple happiness even if he didn't share it. That was an emotion he hadn't had the need or want to feel, for his heart had died with his first pack centuries ago.
Harry's lips drew back, threatening the challenger to his status as Alpha, yet something within him stirred, remembering a time before the Pit – a time that seemed a dream. Upon his birthday, turning seventeen, something that he would always remember, be he in the form of the Other or of the Pack.
He wasn't sure what exactly pulled him out of the darkness that had seemed to swallow him whole. Whether it was the uncomfortable brightness, or the pain that seemed to start in his bones, slowly working itself to his flesh or even the aching in his gums and teeth that felt like his whole mouth was shifting, he didn't know and at the moment he just wanted to go back to the dark place that had held him so comfortably.
But the sound of his name in almost desperate tones wouldn't allow him to do as he wished so he braced himself and tried to pry his eyes open only to be met with more brightness that caused a painful hiss to escape his mouth. More voices joined the first, almost frantic and excited at the same time, and he could tell even behind his eyelids that the light had died away and would now be safer for him to try once again.
A few blinks later and Harry found the sharp, pale and worried face of Remus Lupin looking down at him. Confused and a little worried himself - for Remus wasn't really one to worry over nothing - Harry tried to open his mouth, to ask what was wrong with the only living reminder of his parents he had, but nothing would come out but a choked noise. Then he felt himself being gently lifted up and leaning against a warm chest as a glass of water was held up for him to drink from. With that out of the way, Harry let himself relax against Remus, only to tense again when he caught the almost inaudible whisper of "I'm sorry, Cub. This is all my fault."
"Wha?" Harry asked as he tried to turn his head to look at the man behind him only to hiss again as his body protested the movement. He heard a swallow and vaguely, somewhere in the back of his mind, he wondered why he could hear such a thing, but put it in the back of his mind when Remus started speaking.
"This wasn't supposed to happen. It was only supposed to ensure the bond all four of us had with you when you were born. No where did it say that you would or could become like us. I wouldn't wish my curse on even the foulest of people."
Harry knew Remus was rambling, the words he spoke didn't make much sense and there was a tightness in his voice that Harry had never heard before. So against his body's better judgement, he forced himself to turn around in the embrace and hold up a hand to stop whatever words were getting ready to come out of his once professor. "Remus, you're rambling and I haven't a clue as to what you are talking about."
There was a deep breath and a tightening of the arms around his body and even though it hurt, Harry couldn't find it in his heart to ask the man to stop.
"After you were born," Remus began with a far off look in his eyes, "Lily and James asked us - Sirius and me - to preform a bonding with you that would ensure that one of us would be uncontested if they were ever killed. They knew it was a possibility and so we agree. Lily ensured us that nothing harmful would come of it and so we both donated a bit of our blood." He stopped and Harry held
back a gasp at the utter sadness that the man before him radiated. "But it seems, that when you came into your inheritance a few nights ago, our blood was triggered by your powerful magic and a now..."
"Now, what?" Harry asked, fear starting to well up inside him also.
"It seems that the Blacks had a bit of vampire blood in them, but Sirius, I don't think he knew that. But that's not the worse of it," Remus closed his eyes and Harry held his breath, "You, according to Poppy, have my curse as well."
Harry was startled from the memory with a movement from the Other – the man who was Pack, yet not - and the Other smiled, bringing to forth, in his eyes, all the pain and death he had seen, a chilling echo of Harry's own. Harry did not have to look into this man's mind to know that this man had seen as much as he had.
Something primal and animal passed between them, and Harry, for the first time since entering the Pit, saw the man not as an Other – but as a kindred spirit. Harry had thought himself alone, but this man too, seemed to know how desolate life could become without an equal to share it with.
Harry let out a soft growl of acknowledgment. This Pack-Other was a fellow Alpha, although he had no proper Pack.
Yet, the pain of a memory, awoken by this stranger was so fresh and vivid, it must have bled into his eyes, for daringly, the man bared his hand and reached foreword, bringing it slowly in front of Harry's face warily, but offering an alliance of sorts.
Harry let the Pack-Other's palm touch him – running over the tufts of thick, black neck fur that surrounded his wolf like body - accepting from the Pack-Other an offered friendship not born of the Pack. Submitting himself to another's will, for the first time since the Change, and remembered why he was so tired of life.
The only thing keeping him alive was the inability to kill one such as himself, for in all the time that had passed – that Harry had lived through - no other of his kind had existed. His first Pack had died well over a century ago, dying by mortal ways. Either from war or time.
And Harry, at his darkest, had tried many ways to kill himself - starvation, drowning, beheading, even now , the Pit, had been a effort to kill himself.
Harry stood calmly, letting the Pack-Other touch and pet his wiry fur, digging his hands into it to stroke the soft undercoat, and wondered what the Pack-Other had seen in his own eyes.
Harry's mind went back to when he had last looked in a mirror - just after the one war Harry had ever fought in, after losing so many he had cared for... Pack, and Other.
He stood there panting - more out of magical exhaustion than the need to breathe - as his tired green eyes took in their surroundings now that the end of the battle had come. He could clearly see the ashy remains of the once Tom Riddle laying in a scattered pile several feet in front of him. Beyond that, the unmistakable white-blonde hair of one of the Malfoys lay limply on the scorched earth.
Even further beyond, on the slopping rise of land that stretched out to reach the one place he called home, were the bodies of Death Eaters, Order members, other adults, and even to his horror and dismay children - ones that used to be students of Hogwarts.
The battle had been long and hard. Three days and four nights of almost non-stop spell casting, slaying and screams and Harry had been there through it all.
His hand tightened around his wand, and small crackles of magic flared out of it in response to his anger and sadness. He could still see in his mind's eye when Ron, his beloved brother and friend, was mauled by one of the werewolves that had joined Voldemort. But Ron's death didn't go without retribution, he had made sure of that when the Alpha in him cried out, snarling at the loss of one of hispack. Harry let the feeling flow through him even as he himself snarled, showing of his impressive canines - a lingering gift from the blood of his Godfather - and shifted into his wolf form, letting that part of him take over. His wolf form was impressive and had the unmistakable aura of Alpha as it growled and ran at the now frozen smaller gray-ish werewolf. With a leap, Harry tackled theother wolf and instantly had it in death's embrace with a single clamp of his steel-like jaw on vulnerable neck. He drank in the blood that soaked his mouth, knowing that he would need it and more if he was to finish this and finally kill the man that had ruined his life.
Viciously, as a last punishment for Ron's death, he tore his teeth away from the neck, ripping a good chunk of flesh and fur with it, before he spit it out and went back over to the lifeless, bloody body of his brother.
A whimper, and sad amber eyes closed before he lowered his massive head and gently licked his friend's face clean of blood, knowing that if the rest of Ron's family survived, they would not want to see such a youthful face covered in the slowly darkening fluid.
Throwing his head back, Harry let out a lonely but angered howl that carried throughout the battle grounds before he took off at a run, searching for his target.
Ron was just the first of his Pack's bodies that he found along the way. Ginny dead by the Killing Curse, Neville with more deep slashes across his body than he cared to count, Moody with his other leg and an arm torn away, Tonks beheaded, Hermione with her eyes open and blood pooling around her head...all of them gone and with each one he passed, he left a piece of his soul there with them.
He was startled out of his flashing memories by a stumbling noise behind him. Whipping around, he aimed his wand and growled, only to stop short in hope.
Remus, bloodied, but alive, was slowly making his way over to him. Remus, who was like a father to him. Remus, who had made him part of what he was now, who had taken him and showed him the way of the werewolf. Remus, who he - Harry - had eventually fought and took over the Alpha position from. Remus, who had loved him like a son.
And it was then that Harry realized, with tears running down his face, that at the age of twenty, Harry only had one member of his pack left - the man standing before him with his arms open wide - and he had failed to protect them all.
Harry looked up lazily, the shift of movement from the giant sized wolf not sending a jolt of fear through the Pack-Other, as it would have any other man. Just as Harry had known, the buzzer screeched through the air of the Pit, and Harry got to his feet, the Pack-Other watching him with luminous silver eyes as he left.
As he left, Harry's eyes turned to an Other that was locked in his cell, the mans face showing awe even as he stunk of fear, at he approached – and as his right, Harry lunged at him through the cage, growling, and showed the Other he still had to fear the Alpha of the Pack.
Later, Harry grudgingly allowed himself to be caged, all while promising his worried Pack that he would feed on the blood of a Other when next they were freed.