Author's Note: Just something that came to my mind, developed and got an ending. Guessed I was as well to write it down.
Disclaimer: I do not own Hedwig. Hoot.
Harry was panting, hiding behind a rock. Voldemort was taunting him to come out; saying his father would be proud to see his son hiding like a coward. It angered him to no end but he knew his father wouldn't want him to die stupidly, answering such a stupid goad. Harry had to concentrate. The portkey that got him here was too far to reach and there was no way Voldemort and his troops would let him float it all the way to him. He had to make one on his own.
After realizing the potential of the device, when travelling to the Quidditch tournament, he had decided to learn how to make one. It might be illegal to make an unofficial one, but he managed to convince Hermione to help him, telling her it could make a good last-resort escape. She reluctantly agreed. It took about five minutes to get from apprehensive to eager when faced with something new and hard to learn. It appeared Harry was as gifted at enchanting a portkey as he was at taking one. It took him the whole year to learn how to make one. But now, he could do it with his eyes closed. It was recommended to do so, in fact, to better visualize the place where you want to end up.
"Portus." Harry whispered, thinking of the stand right before the judge, back at Hogwarts. He had to get the news of Voldemort's return to the authorities as fast as possible, and what better way to do that than to tell the Minister himself!
The rock he was hiding behind exploded in gravel, sending him forward and making him let go of the glove he tried to turn in a portkey.
"Too slow, Potter! I get tired of waiting after you! Your parents would be proud to see you coward, trying to crawl under a rock like a worm to hide from my power! No-one can hide from Lord Voldemort! Now stand! You and I will duel for the first and the last time, boy! Bow before Lord Voldemort!
Harry's brain decided to restart his functions. Would he dare? Should he open his eyes? He heard nothing more than the wind. It was warmer than it was a moment ago. But was it a moment ago? How long was he asleep? More like unconscious… No taunting. Voldemort wasn't there. No snickering. His lackeys were no longer around him. Harry opened his eyes, feeling strangely weak, and tired. There was light, but not a lot. He laid on a bare rock. The ground, all around, were rocks. They weren't flat rocks either. It was more like… a desolated place where nothing seemed to grow, with hills of all sizes surrounding him, all in blunt rock. Some smooth, others with razor-sharp edges. He still had his glasses on. Thank god. How did this happen? Where was he? Last thing he remembers…
He was duelling Voldemort. He was in the cemetery and their spells met. A dome of bright, golden light. A strand of pure magic going from his wand to Voldemort's. He was pushing some…pearly fabric of magic toward Voldemort with great effort. Then he saw Cedric's body from the corner of his eyes. He lost his concentration. He lost his focus. Voldemort began to laugh and the pearl travelled back toward him. His wand begun to shake madly. Something…came out. A shadow. The portkey'd glove! Harry let go of his wand with one hand and reached for it. He touched the shadow of the portkey and… The pull to the navel…incredible darkness and a travel that seemed to take him somewhere…And then he woke up. Back to the present. His scar felt dull, pretty much like everything else. Harry looked up at the sky and saw the sun. It was grey. It served a grey light, if such a thing was possible.
Harry, painfully, got up. He felt sore all over, but knew it was the travel, and not the wounds he got when the rock he was standing behind exploded from the curse of his nemesis that caused the pain. He was bleeding back then. Bleeding from his hand, that had been stabbed. Bleeding from his legs and back, scorched from the ripped rock. But now blood coated his champion robes, with no injuries beneath it. Harry looked around, feeling the hair on the back of his neck stand up.
Harry suddenly lost his breath as something collided with him, hard, sending him to the ground. Hands, hard hands search for his throat while the man standing over him blocked his legs from kicking. Already, he couldn't breathe! Harry tried to hit the man, to claw at his face. Dark! That thing looked so dark, as if it was spewing shadow all around itself, with his anger, his fury and clear intention to cause suffering, hurt and death! Harry felt something stopping his right hand from grasping his adversary as his vision began to blur. He already had something in his hand…His wand! He never let go of his wand! What could be useful against that…
"Reduc…to…" he managed to splutter out, aiming straight at the head. The spell managed to push back the hood of the man that attacked him. Harry hoped for something more. Usually, a point-blank Reducto should have at least ripped half of the skin from his face. A good enough distraction. Harry saw dark dots dance in front of his eyes, making the view of the face of his aggressor, stretched by unchecked fury, even scarier. He had to use something else! The most powerful spell he had in inventory, the one he was the best at. He closed his eyes, making the dark man over him strengthen his hold even more as he used his last seconds to think happy thoughts. Ron…Hermione…The Christmas spent with Sirius…
Harry used what was left of his resolve to stab the creature in the mouth with his wand.
"Expecto Patronum." was what Harry tried to say, but it ended in an incomprehensible gurgle.
Still, the intent was there, the memory strong enough and the power to back the spell was there in spades. Back in England, a corporal stag patronus would have gracefully appeared, exploding from Harry's wand. As it was here, a thick silvery mist got out, invading the dark creature's mouth, going down his throat. The effect was instantaneous. The thing let go of Harry, falling on his back and clawing at his throat and neck. Clawing was the right term as he ripped flesh right out of himself, his skin taking the red tint of burning flesh and of flowing blood. Harry reeled back, coughing, feeling the small dent on his neck where the sharp nails had dug in. The dark creature thrashed a moment, than got weaker and stood still. It was dead. It was clearly dead. Harry didn't need to take a pulse to know that. Harry waited a bit for his strength to get back. Surprisingly, he felt a bit better than when he woke up, even after this near strangulation. He felt as if he had been incredibly thirsty and had downed not a glass, but a shooter of water. About that much better.
This time, Harry knew he wasn't alone by the sounds of small rocks rolling under someone's feet. He turned around, pointing his wand toward the newcomer. Climbing a small hill, she appeared on top in a small halo of light. As dark was the creature that just attacked him, she appeared to glow from a light clearer than the sun. It wasn't blinding in any way or even some kind of aura. He just…saw her as if she was under the real sunlight. She wore mismatched clothes, ripped and torn all over. She had long brown pants with a navy blue shirt and worn winter boots. Her hair was dirty blond, in the way that light blond hair gets dirty after weeks of neglect. She had a cute round face fixed with a blazed expression as if he didn't stand over the corpse of some dark creature, pointing at her with a stick. What did keep his attention the most was her club though. It looked to be very sturdy. A thick wooden stick with blunt rocks tied to the top. They must have seen uses as they were not as grey as rocks should be. He wondered if he should hold his wand like a dagger, making as if he wanted to stab her with it or if he should throw the Statute of Secrecy in the bin; it must have got out in the first place.
"Is that a wand, by any chance?" the girl asked, putting her club on the ground and leaning on it.
Okay, she knew. It was better that way.
"How do you know?" Harry asked, putting his wand in his waistband.
"You're not the…well… you are the first magician I met, but you're not the first one to get here. I guess you're new to the place?"
"Wizard," corrected Harry automatically, his voice raspy from the dry air. "And where might 'here' be?"
"Thirsty?" she asked, raising an eyebrow.
"Terribly," admitted Harry, a sheepish grin finding his lips.
"Though luck, wizard boy. I've got only a little bit left and I was searching for a source myself. I guess you can come with me and we'll share information."
"I'm Harry," the raven haired boy said, walking to her.
"What are you doing?" the girl suddenly said, looking deadly serious.
"The Dark. Aren't you searching him?"
"Dark?" Harry asked for himself, but turned toward the fallen creature behind him. "Search…him?"
"Don't you dare waste resources in front of me, wizard boy!" she answered angrily. "Get your ass in gear! This is your kill, your loot. You'd better be grateful I don't steal it from you! Get anything you can carry. The most common source of anything useful is by looting a corpse."
Harry looked at her unbelievingly.
"This…happen often?" he asked, getting worried.
"You might have days where it doesn't happen. I'm still waiting for one."
Harry turned around, horrified. He'd have to kill on a daily basis? What was this world? He got to the body and started searching it. He didn't want to anger the girl any more than she already was. She seemed to know more than he about this place. She decided to begin his education as he was stripping the Dark, as they seemed to call them, from his clothes.
"Everyone I met here is from somewhere else, getting here in strange circumstances. I'm Amy, by the way. Where to begin? Everything here is Light or Dark. The only thing grey is the sun. The Light kills the Dark, and the Dark kill the Light. You and I are Light. That thing at your feet is obviously a Dark. Despite being people walking around this place, none of us are native. There is no town, no city, no gathering. No houses. Nothing. Most of this place is barren of all life. There are some strange animals that taste like shit when cooked, but it's almost all we have so we manage. Sometime, we find things that grow between the rocks. Remember those places as most of the time, water is nearby."
Harry nodded now and then, taking things in stride. He felt oddly light headed. As if his complicated life disappeared to be changed by something incredibly simple. To top it off, he had no known way to get back as it was. He'd have to ask her. The Dark was now almost completely naked. He left the underwear. If she wanted them, she just had to take them herself. He used the shirt to carry the rest of the cloth and retrieved a butter knife, or something that looked like it, from one pocket. He had nothing else on him. Amy nodded appreciably.
"You got a small weapon on your first kill. Good. Hold on that. From what I heard, the last magician that got here always whined how powerless he was. He said he could throw balls of fire and now had trouble lighting a campfire."
"That's right. I tried using it and I barely managed to get a reaction from my strongest spell."
"Yeah…How did you do that to him, by the way? That almost look self-inflicted," the girl said, hunching over the corpse.
"It was. My spell let something in his mouth. It's a concentrated version of…how to describe it…it showed as a silvery mist of pure positive memory. It burned him and poisoned him, I think. He tried to rip his throat open, it was so painful to him."
Amy stared, impressed.
"Wow. You killed with a spell. You must be fairly powerful where you're from. Well, if you survive, you'll get stronger. That last…wizard…I talked about managed to leave this place. With each kill, something happens to us. Something that make us stronger. The wizard killed enough he was able to make his fireball as big as his fist! They said it was dangerous as hell! After a particular kill, they said he just disappeared, without leaving traces. The most common theory is that he killed enough to pay a tribute to whatever got us here in the first place to get back home. Or, at least, somewhere else."
"I came here on my own power. It's…the shadow of a transportation spell, if I can say so. I took it in very... unique circumstances and got transported here," Harry explained, strapping the makeshift package on his back.
"You're no exception. I got here falling in a well near a haunted house. The wizard designed a spell or something and got here. I knew someone who disappeared in something called the Bermuda Triangle. Another was lost in forest and finally he even lost the forest. Something got us here, from everywhere in the worlds. From what I gather, the Earth isn't big enough to hold all the kind of people I met. One of them had real cat ears on his head. I guess there is more to the universe than we know about."
Harry nodded. It was a lot to take in, but right now, it was the outline of the world he was fated to live in for now.
"Let's search for water then. I'm getting really thirsty now and I'll have to wash these clothes and figure how to make a gourd out of them."
Amy nodded and opened the walk. Harry left the place he got in and kept silent, figuring he had to spare his saliva for now.
There were three over a small strand of water running amongst the rocks. Darks, all of them. Harry and Amy were hiding behind a rock, spying on them. They could just let them drink, leave and go after them but…they had a flask and a gourd. Amy was looking at them with greed in her eyes. Harry knew they would not leave without a fight. He was thirsty. Amy allowed him one sip of her meagre reserve the day prior after hours of walk without luck.
She pulled on Harry's sleeve and slowly crawled back down behind their hiding place.
"Okay," she whispered. "We have the advantage of surprise, they have the number. At first look, I have the most dangerous weapon. Usually, I would not even consider taking three of them down but with you here, we have a chance. I know you don't know how to use a knife. It's going to be blind luck on your side. You will have to hold on. Don't try to fight to win, fight to live. The strongest of them will charge me and try to stop me from helping you. I'll have to beat him quickly and rescue you. With any luck, I'll be able to take one of the two on you from behind. Then it's going to be two on one. Got it? I need to trust you on this, on your survival instinct. If you go down, I'm done for. Can you do this?"
Harry thought about it one moment. They needed this. Harry felt sick at killing, but not at killing them. He was Light. They were Dark. That much was clear.
"Let's do this. Let me approach them first. I'll get around and have their backs to you. Try to get one from behind quickly. We'll have a better chance this way."
Amy thought through this change of plan and nodded resolutely. Harry didn't look over his shoulder even once and began circling the Darks. He was as quiet as possible but knew it was a lost cause. Too much small rocks everywhere. He had no talent in stalking anyway. But in a way, he just had to fake being cautious. That would draw their attention as much as anything else. As he guessed, when he decided to show up and approach them, they were already alerted, looking in his direction. Harry froze a moment, caught like a dear in the headlight. Then, with a shaking hand, he drew his butter knife and walked toward the group resolutely. From his other hand, he drew his wand.
The Dark, that were already looking at him warily, stopped their advance on him. They were careful. They might be Dark, but they were not stupid. They spread from each other to avoid giving a single target. Harry shook more visibly. The first one was about four meters away in front of him, one three meters to his left, the other about the same distance to his right. Harry looked hard at the three, his eyes switching fast to keep them all in his line of sight. In fact, he didn't want to betray Amy's position as she walked behind the Dark in front of him, her club raised high. The problem was that he was getting too close. The other two would see Amy in the corner of their eyes soon. They had to focus on him.
Harry charged the Dark in front of him, sprinting. It took a step back in surprise, standing in a defensive position. He never saw the club crush his skull. Harry changed course at once as the two Darks remaining finally became aware of Amy's presence. Amy decided to help Harry and ran toward the same Dark that her partner targeted. Harry cast a 'Lumos Maxima', pouring as much energy he could into it, targeting the enemy's eyes about one meter away. The light that got out wasn't enough to blind him but did surprise him nonetheless. Harry charged with his knife with abandon, stabbing anything that got near him. The arm, the shoulder, the chest, the neck… The Dark tried to avoid the small weapon but stumbled back. It was Harry's turn to straddle an enemy and attack with the intent to kill. In a flash of lucidity, he made his arm circle around the raised ones of the Dark, trying to defend himself, and pierced the brain through the ear. The knife cut in with minimal resistance, the Dark jerking stiff for the last time.
Harry got back up and looked around. Amy was running after the last Dark that tried to flee. Harry, not thinking further than that, took off after them. He bent down and almost fell to take a rock the size of his fist in his hand. And he ran. Amy was used to this but she had a heavy weapon to carry. The Dark was running for his life. He got further and further and Harry, in a last desperate move, threw his rock. He missed by at least four meters. The Dark got away. He stopped running, panting, at Amy's side. She was panting too.
"Let's…go back, Harry. We have to take our loot before anyone else gets there."
Harry nodded wordlessly and they trailed back to the source. Harry searched the Dark with the knife in his ear while Amy got the one with the crushed skull. They found three gourds on them. Amy was smiling. This was a nice catch. Harry found no weapon on this body. He only had his clothes and some roots in a rag.
"Nice catch, Harry! Vegetables are hard to find! Now we have water for a while and some veggies to last until we find some animals. I was right to take you with me! You bring good luck."
Harry laughed mirthlessly. That would be the first time.
They stayed at that source a few days. They drank carefully not to get sick, but they filled themselves to last as long as they could without touching their reserve. They searched the place and found a few mushrooms to add to their food stash. Harry's stomach was getting used quickly to the lack of food. It wasn't much worse than a summer at the Dursley's. Amy seemed to like the lack of complain from him. She even punched his arm once saying he wasn't much of a spoiled brat. She helped him doing something with all the clothes they had. They kept the ones that looked the best and she folded them carefully, saying they could be 'tool of a trade'. Harry guessed that new clothes were hard to come by around. She ripped the ones to worn out in strands and showed him how to strap his arms and legs. That could absorb some damage from direct hit, preventing broken bones and shallow cuts. Simply falling on the ground here could be dangerous and cause such wounds. Harry liked the feeling of protection it gave him. Amy laughed a bit when he examined it under all angles once they were done, shadow boxing some.
They were about to leave when another Light came by, searching for water too. He was in rags. Amy got out their spare clothes and showed them to the tall guy. They were fairly smaller, but he could not complain much. They were load better than what he had. He had wounds all around. Harry helped him to use his old clothes as bandages. For the clothes, he gave Harry a spare knife he had. It was rusty, but twice as long as his butter knife. Harry gave his butter knife in exchange as he felt it wasn't that fair. The Light nodded as it was good business and put it in his belt. He drank from the source and lay against a rock, resting.
Harry noticed one thing. The day seemed brighter. When asking Amy about that, the Light, named Louis, laughed a bit.
"Newbie?" he asked Amy.
"A baby two days old," acknowledged Amy, nodding.
"Two… days?" repeated Louis, looking at Harry once more. "No wonder he's so brilliant. Even then, I though you'd be at least five here when I came by."
Amy explained what he meant to a confused Harry.
"We are not called Light only because we are…the good guys for the lack of a better term. Somehow, we are the main source of light around. The more Lights there are in one place, the brighter that place will be. You…you spread a lot of light, even for a newcomer," she said, looking at him with envy.
"Why are you specifying 'for a newcomer'?" asked Harry.
"Because," answered Louis, from his rock, "…after a while of killing, you lose your light. Each kill add a part of darkness to your heart. Until you disappear."
"You die?" asked Harry, horrified.
"No," answered Amy this time. "Disappear. Like that wizard I talked about. You kill enough that you get back home or whatever we disappear to."
Louis nodded lightly. It seemed to be the theory mostly accepted around Harry figured. It wasn't reassuring to him, though.
Harry eyed inside the cave. There was something inside. Something Dark. Harry discovered one thing after a few months of travel: animals could be Dark or Light too. He never got the nerve to kill a rabbit. They were just too…radiant. But he captured it nonetheless, feeding it some veggies now and then. Amy didn't understand. They had ever so little to eat themselves. When crossing the first Dark animal, she understood. What a perfect bait! Animal were hesitant to attack them, but a fluffy little bunny…
Harry's magic got stronger as he killed. Every time, he felt what Louis talked about. A piece of Darkness came to attach to his soul. He felt it somehow. It wasn't a taint or a corruption. He was as Light as he ever was. Simply, more darkness came to…balance it. Harry shared this information to Amy, whose light dimmed faster than his in the last months. She nodded, saying she felt it might explain what she felt. She kissed him straight on the mouth for that, since she admitted worrying a lot lately that she might turn Dark. She was getting closer and closer to him, asking more and more physical contact. Harry knew this wasn't love, but they needed the human contact. Her kiss got more and more hungry and he believed that tonight, this cave would be secured to allow a few hours of peace. At the eager she displayed the last few days, it might not even last twenty minutes though.
Harry put the bunny, which was used to it by now, in front of the cave. Harry and Amy hid behind rocks. The small creature jumped around, making noise in the rocks, never going far inside and coming out as fast. Without warning, a black bear jumped out, his eyes shining red and his fang dripping saliva. He was about to claw the poor bunny, but it quickly had a better idea than freezing in place. It was called 'get the hell out of here'. As the bear passed Amy's hiding rock, he received a club right on the forehead, the rocks attached to it shattering from the force behind the hit. Harry jumped on the dazed beast's back and pointed his wand in its ear.
The simple blasting curse scrambled the brain and exploded the opposite side of the bear's head. Amy whistled appreciably.
"Good job. We should be able to make something of the remaining of the jaw, and the skull. The fur is in pristine condition! We'll have meat for such a long time too! We might even have to trade some so not to lose any! Let's get to work, I'm starving!"
Harry used his dagger and learned how to skin a bear. He already did so with a wolf and some kind of reptile, but it was the first time on something so big. The meat always tasted kind of bad, but they got used to it. Amy was the best to take out the meat. They cleaned the bone and kept them to improvise some weapon for Amy. Her club was a mess and they had nothing to tie new rocks on her shattered shaft. Ropes were a luxury here.
They used the remainder of the shaft to make a fire with driftwood that laid around despite the fact that there were no trees around to drop it. It was one of those mysterious things that made them think that world was a fake one. The bunny eventually came back and Harry gave him what was left of the last batch of mushroom he found with one whole carrot. The small animal was in heaven. Amy smiled at it, not complaining to see it devour some of their precious food. It earned its share. As Harry guessed, Amy decided to upgrade their relationship that night.
Harry walked confidently between the rocks. Four Darks were in front of him. They were as dark as a moonless night, so much it was hard to distinguish their trait. That would be easy. Harry learned that the darker they were, the weaker they were to. Those leaning toward the grey were the most dangerous. He learned that like them, they reached a balance by killing Lights. Harry felt he was getting there. The proof was that they never saw him get near them. Harry's radiance was getting the colour of the sun. Amy was behind them, unnoticed. Her bear-bone club was deadly. The hind legs' bones were strapped together and many smaller bones were sharpened and tied to the end like spikes. Harry still used his dagger and his wand.
He began by blinding them with a flash of light before charging them. He attacked one of them with the dagger, throwing a cutting curse as it stepped back. Two others jumped on him. The third one was busy falling down with a crushed skull. Harry parried the incoming blows with his bandaged arms, letting one punch his torso. He had a thick pad of cloth underneath that ripped the power from his hit. Another slash from the dagger, another throat open from the rusty blade. Amy tripped the other one from the side and Harry threw a bone-crushing curse to the first one who tried to keep his arm attached from the previous cutting curse. He received it in the spine as he was turning to flee. Amy finished the last one quickly, panting slightly.
"This is way better than fireballs!" she said lightly, winking at him. With the ease that came from habit, they searched the Dark and took what had the most value. They had enough ruined clothes for a nice fire tonight.
Harry started it with the clothes and some small wood and they threw the bodies of the dark ones to fuel it as it was strong enough. They started with the detached arm. They stood close from one another but stayed silent. They knew something was wrong. Amy spoke first.
"Harry… It's been about two months now that I haven't felt any changes when killing a Dark. At first, I thought it was because it was so small that I didn't noticed so I focused. But…"
"Two weeks and a half for me," admitted Harry. "I'm almost balanced. You remember that magic user we faced last week? I could see it. I could see the attempt at magic he did and I can almost discern the number of kill a Dark or a Light have done. I can't with you anymore. The only reading I get from looking at you, or focussing on me, is…one more. We only need one more."
Amy frowned. She was clearly frustrated but it would serve nothing to yell at Harry that they had more than one more since then. More than ten, more than a hundred more. She tried hard figuring it. She was sure Harry was too. The ultimate goal was to go home. They both knew it. They both knew that the chances that one of them would go and leave the other alone was very real, and very soon at that.
"One more…"she whispered.
"What's the worst a Light could do?" asked Harry, getting more rigid.
Amy froze as the answer crept in her mind like a revelation. Without consulting each other they jumped apart. They looked at each other with serious eyes, no trace of affection left. Only the realisation of this cruel world where the survival was held above anything. The survival, and the goal to leave this place where everyone was doomed to die.
"To kill another Light," answered Amy, taking her club in her hands.
Harry had his wand trained on her. In their mind flashed the time they spent together, watching each other's back.
"It's only fitting," stated Harry, his sure hand drawing back his wand in a whipping motion. "Goodbye, Amy."
Harry let out a spell he designed to impress her. He worked hard to get it working. As Amy's club hit him square across the chest, the spikes ripping his flesh, the fireball, as big as her head, exploded point blank range.
Harry opened his eyes. No pain. He didn't feel anything to his chest when he knew that Amy's club should have delivered a fatal wound. The sky was dark. No. The sky was black. Night black. Not grey. He stood back up, his wand still in his right hand, and he stretched. Looking around, he saw people starring at him with wide eyes. He still had his cloth armour, his bloody dagger at his side and was utterly relaxed. Even surrounded by Death Eaters and Voldemort facing him, slacked jaw, in the cemetery he left so long ago.
"Hmm. I guessed time didn't flow the same here," Harry stated to himself. People just didn't know how to react.
"Potter…Where were you just a second ago? You disappeared. I thought you'd escaped, once more…but it doesn't matter much. You'll die now," said Voldemort, raising his wand.
The killing curse sped toward Harry. Harry sidestepped it. McNair, behind The-Boy-Who-Came-Back, took it in the chest and fell to the ground, lifeless. Harry realized he could see magic around. He could see it gather in the wand, form the spell and saw it sped toward him. Dodging it was a simple matter, really. Voldemort was seething, he raised his wand for a second attack, people scrambled from behind Harry.
"You want to know where I went, Tom?" asked Harry in a conversational tone.
Voldemort froze mid-spell, unsure of what to answer. Harry felt something when looking at Voldemort. Balance. It was all about balance. He, Harry Potter, wasn't a Light Wizard anymore. He was balanced. Harry took his dagger and cast a spell on it.
Then, under everyone's terrified eyes, he threw it to Voldemort. In fact, he threw it in Voldemort. The Dark Lord didn't disappear like that. A small maelstrom formed, Voldemort screaming a painful, high scream. Harry felt something rip from his forehead, leaving a bleeding scar behind, and saw it dive into Voldemort. From the sky, multiple green strands of soul gathered and dove in Voldemort, who finally vanished with a small popping noise.
Silence replaced the chaos that took place moments ago. Then, it began anew, coming from the gathered Death Eaters.
"What have you done?"
"Where is the Dark Lord!"
"You're gonna die, Potter!"
It lasted about twenty seconds. The threats were mostly empty, Harry having stood to Voldemort as if he was a gnat. Then, Voldemort came back, as if he had never left. He was now wearing dark pants and a long sleeved shirt. He had a few scars on his face that were not there before. His face itself looked more…human. He had his wand in one hand and some kind of metal, fist weapon in the other. Looking around, he dropped it to the ground. Harry himself was getting rid of the strap he had on the arms as he walked toward Voldemort.
Lucius beat him to it and kneeled in front of his master.
"My Lord! You are back! It was evident you would defeat anything this kid would throw at you…"
"Shut up," Voldemort said, looking tired.
"What are your orders?" asked another Death Eater, figuring it was the best way to get back in his good grace.
Harry laughed mirthlessly.
"What is it going to be, My Lord? Any thoughts on how to proceed with your reign of terror?" he asked sarcastically.
"Do you have any idea how much I had to kill to get back?" asked Tom Riddle, annoyed. "Get bent, Potter."
The Death Eaters couldn't believe the casual exchange. Their Lord then took Lucius Malfoy by the shoulder and got him back to his feet.
"Get back up, idiot. Give me that arm," he said, roughly showing the Dark Mark on Malfoy senior's arm.
The Dark Lord whispered some kind of chant and the Death Eaters screamed bloody murder, all grasping at their arms. Smoke rose, the smell of burned flesh filling the air.
"You want an order?" asked Tom sarcastically, letting go of an unmarked but now scarred Malfoy, "Get lost! Go home, and never bother me with this Death Eater stuff again."
Harry finished getting the cloth bandages off his legs and stood up, feeling lighter. It was incredible how much he had stacked it up in those months… Harry started walking away with Voldemort slowly, both of them considering the new life ahead of them.
"What are you going to do now?" asked Harry to Tom who was getting rid of his excess clothing too.
"Me? I think I'll begin by growing some hair on this head. It's cold at night. You?" asked Tom seriously.
"I dunno. I think I'm going to make some research on parallel universes and kick the ass of the one that designed this god forsaken place."
"Give me a call if you have any leads."
HUGE thanks to Half-Drown Dracula, my new Beta! He did a terrific job and thanks to him, I can finally start posting stuff again! My other long-term project is coming along nicely and I have a many chapters down already. Still have to type a few hundred of pages and more than half of the story to write...but it's all planned down! Cheers everybody!