If you looked outside at that time, you would have seen two lone figures walking down the road, heading for where the big and very old mansion stood. Why they would want to go there, would have been a mystery for anyone who did not know what dwelt on there, even if the mansion was in ruins for any normal person, if you knew what to look for it still stood there was proud and beautifully as it did in its early days.
"Could you please tell me again why we are doing this?" It was a woman´s voice, a bit shrill as if she was nervous, which she was. It was not everyday a muggleborn witch went to speak with the most feared dark lord the world had seen since Grindewald , of her own will.
"Oh please, I promise you he won´t kill you, now would you please stop with all that smoking? You´ve already had five and that´s my last pack of cigarettes." Glaring angrily at her companion, who had reached out to grab the packet she kept in her jeans.
"Screw you Harry, you may not be nervous but hello, I´m a muggleborn, he´ll kill me!"
"No he won´t, I have a plan, trust me." She snorted, that did not make her feel any better.
"Oh that makes me feel so much safer, HELL NO!" Harry rolled his eyes, maybe he should have given her the booze instead if his cigarettes. Lighting one, Harry took a drag, slowly letting the smoke out, making small rings of smoke.
"Jesus Hermione, don´t get your knickers in a twist." Hermione did not stop glaring at him but she did not light another cigarette. The huge front door of the mansion were made of dark timber and made the mansion look bigger. Taking a deep breath, Harry knocked on the door. Hoping that someone actually would hear it, and it seemed someone did. Soundlessly the door opened only to reveal a small house elf standing in the doorway looking up at them with big round eyes.
"May I help you?" It had a squeaky voice as any other elf but it spoke with proper grammar and its clothes were clean so Harry concluded that the house elves were well treated. Giving the elf his best and most charming smile, Harry did not even blink when he spoke.
"Yes, we are here to speak with Tom, tell him it is Harry." Showing Harry and Hermione into the big hall, leaving them there, the house elf left to inform the owner of the house that he had quests. Hermione had started to chew on some bubblegum she had had in her pocket, it would not do to bite on her nails, she had been to the pedicurist only a day ago and so she was not going to destroy her nicely done nails.
It did not take long before a man came down the stairs, he looked as if he was in his early thirties, clad in muggle clothes, a book in his hand and a suspicious look on his face.
"Potter what a surprise and his little muggle friend is with him." Hermione had gripped Harry's hand and her nails were digging into his skin, making it hard for him not to wince. Whatever people thought about Hermione, she surely was not weak.
"Nice to see you too Tom, you look smashing. Now I have something important to speak with you about and I would appreciate if we could talk civilly, without any hexes." Harry could feel those brown eyes looking at him intensely, as if Tom was trying to decide if Harry was speaking the truth. Nodding, Tom showed them into a study, it was big and spacious with books covering all the four walls, and there was even a small table in the middle of the room with a sofa and chairs, all in black leather.
"Do sit down." Tom motioned for the sofa and both the teenagers sat down, Potter looked calm but the Granger girl looked as if hell had frozen, to be exact she looked as if she would start hyperventilating at any moment now. "So what did you want to talk about?"
"I want to join you, as your equal of course," Harry could have bet his fortune that he had caught Tom of guard but the dark lord composed himself before anyone else noticed. They spoke for a long time, Harry doing most of the talking with only small comments from Hermione while Tom listened. He had a lot to think about when he retired that night.
"Well you may stay here at the manor; Twinky will show you to your rooms," Tom snapped his fingers, and a small elf appeared.
"What dose master wish for me to do?"
"Show these two guests where they can sleep; some extra clothing would probably be appreciated." Both teens nodded and followed the small elf out from the room. Everything had somehow gone a lot easier than they had imagined but the dark lord was just one person, his followers would be something else. Hermione had slightly calmed down and when they had spoken, she had seen a completely different side of Voldemort, of course, he was still dangerous but her senses told her he would not break a promise. Which was true, Tom did not promise something he did not mean and he was actually quite happy that he had gotten Harry on his side, the muggle girl was just a plus, and it was no secret that she was an adequate witch and knew her spells. Not that it was that which stuck to him, it was what they had told him, about what Dumbledore did and how he did it. Sneering Tom could not help but feel that there may still be some hope for the dark side.
To say that the inner circle was surprised when they arrived that morning to eat breakfast at the manor, a tradition that they all seemed to enjoy, and saw their lord sitting in the small dining hall with Potter and muggle girl talking, it would be a lie, they were gob smacked. It took a good part of the breakfast to get everything explained and some calmed down. After all it was not every day you find your lord talking with his sworn enemy, in a civil way.
"Did Dumbledore really do that?" Narcissa´s voice broke at the end.
"Yes, and Sirius was neither the first nor the last to be sacrificed for the greater good." Harry´s voice was low; he had never felt more betrayed than when he heard the headmaster's plans.
"Well it seems as if he´s not as light as he want people to think he is," Rodolphus said, his voice was a bit raspy after the years in Azkaban and he had a thoughtful expression on his face. Out of all Tom´s inner circle, Rodolphus was the quietest and calmest. Maybe it had to do with the fact that he was their unofficial healer or what it was but he was always the voice of reason. He did rarely get angry and he always seemed to have answers to everything. Rodolphus had never been a big fan of speaking and so when he did speak people listened, not in the way Lucius did it, almost commanding people to listen, no it was more of a pull. People were drawn to his voice, and Harry could not stop himself from looking at the man, he was handsome but like Sirius, he looked haunted and he had yet to fill out completely after his stay in Azkaban. Eating their breakfast, they moved to the drawing room, as it was much more comfortable.
While they sat in the room drinking tea, all kinds of weird plans were cracked but in the end it was Hermione who was the voice of reason.
"Why not just put a death eater as the DADA professor, gods know that Dumbles has a hard time finding one and on the same time you´ll have someone there as an extra pair of eyes. N offense professor but you won´t be able to handle it all alone." Tom nodded; the girl was speaking the truth.
"You´re right, but who would that be? You forget that almost everyone in this room is on the run, well except for Lucius but I need him for other business." At that Hermione gave a lopsided grin.
"Who said it had to be a follower, why don´t you go? I mean the only one who would know who you are, is Dumbledore and a minor glamour would make sure he wouldn´t recognize you."
"She´s right my lord, and then you would get direct information," Severus cut in, a blank expression on his face. His mind going over every possible thing that could go wrong but if they managed to pull this one of then they would always be one-step ahead of Dumbledore.
"Are you sure? There is no way I will be let into the castle."
"Don´t be so sure," said Harry.
"He´s right, and if I say that you´re an old acquaints that I met in America and that your neutral leaning more for the light side then believe me you´ll have the job." Tom had to admit that Severus was making a valid point and that the idea in itself was not a bad one. Watching the people in the room, at least Lucius seemed to think it was a good idea if you went by his facial expression and Bella was looking rather smug. Rabastan was quiet but it was nothing new, and Rodolphus was nodding approvingly. Sighing Tom, shook his head.
"Well if you can arrange it in a decent way Severus then why not, it´s not as if we have a better plan." Harry laughed at that, which earned him a few glances.
"Dumbles won´t know what hit him." If Harry would have known how right, he was when he said that. No one would be able to expect what would happen next.
Living in the big manor was something completely new for the two teens but it did not take long before they adjusted. Never in her life had Hermione thought she would be sitting and drinking tea whit Narcissa Malfoy having a good time. Everyone were like one big family, and whatever people believed about Tom then it was not true, yes the man could be a psychopath but not once had she seen him raise his wand against his inner circle. The way they acted around family and friends were so much h different from how the acted to other people that in the start Hermione had been a bit shocked. Especially Lucius, he was nice caring and gentle if you were family and Hermione did not even want to think what would happen to the poor sod who would try to hurt Narcissa or worse Draco. Half of the time the death eaters acted like five year olds was entirely over looked, especially was it was Bella and Lucius with their fights.
Hermione was not the only one having a good time, Harry and Tom, spent several hours together talking, and somehow Harry found himself understanding the other man better. Harry told about his home life and in exchange, Tom told Harry about his time in the orphanage. Thus, the days passed slowly, nearing in on September the first.
Is it good enough to be continued on? Please review and tell me what you think!