Very long chapter this time, but hopefully a good ending to The Call. Several storylines resolved; but not all. Vague lead-in to next year.
Please don't hate me.
Harry ran through the Ministry of Magic, away from the legion of Death Eaters present; a while ago, the Order of the Phoenix had arrived, apparently warned by the Doctor, and had come when, inexplicably, the heat shield around Hogwarts had fallen.
Flash; he let loose a burst of light, back down the corridor, striking a distant, pursuing wizard.
Exhaling, weary, the Boy Who Lived stumbled into another room.
In the centre of the room, stood a familiar arch; and the eerie, inexplicable veil. Harry stumbled to a halt, mind going blank, forgetting the Death Eaters. Mind dominated by the whispers emanating from the veil.
He was taken from the reverie by a sudden explosion; a curse by one of five Death Eaters, as they barrelled into the room. Neville, voice congested, duelled the group of five, alongside Sirius Black, Tonks, Luna and Hermione. The DA and Order raised several shields, narrowly blocking jets of red light.
"Stupefy!" Harry shouted, running towards the, managing to stun one of the Death Eaters before they'd noticed his presence. Then: "Protego!" Narrowly shielding against a retaliatory curse from one of the four still standing.
"Nice one Harry!" Sirius shouted, grinning. Harry's godfather twirled his wand, deflecting a curse and firing a curling ribbon of light in response. The ribbon spattered over the shield, turning to molten droplets and while none of them were strong enough to break through the shield charm, it was only meant as a distraction.
Luna cast a levitation charm, catching the Death Eater of guard as he was lifted about half a metre into the air, before being thrown, surprisingly hard by the normally docile Ravenclaw, into his ally.
"Bombarda!" a shout from one of the two remaining Death Eaters, sending a curse rocketing up to the ceiling. Chunks of stone fell the huge distance, clattering and shattering on the floor. As the Order and DA moved to protect against them, or to move out the way, two stunning hexes struck Hermione and Tonks.
"Stupefy!" Harry shouted, striking one of the two, momentarily pleased, Death Eaters. They fell to the floor, leaving one standing, who fought valiantly for several seconds, against Sirius and Luna on one side, and Harry for another: but it wasn't long until he too was stunned.
"Good job Harry," Sirius nodded appreciatively, running over to the student, and grasping the black haired boy in a tight hug; leaving it to Luna to Ennervate the stunned DA and Order members.
"Thanks, Sirius," Harry exhaled, panting. "Sorry for-"
"Don't worry," Sirius shook his head, batting away any apology Harry made for coming to the Ministry, "I'm just glad-"
Sirius hesitated for a moment; Harry frowned, about to say something, when he noticed a figure sideways. He turned; A flash of light, a second burst of light came spiralling down the corridor, striking Sirius Black: he was flung across the room, falling and passed, gracefully, through the veil.
The veil fluttered once; a momentary spark of action. And then it was still.
Harry looked sideways, first at the arch, and then towards the source of the spell: a terribly familiar face, a pale woman, tangled hair. Yet younger somehow, the same person, but at the wrong time.
Bellatrix Lestrange; face split wide open by a grin.
"I killed Black," her mocking, cruel voice carried own the corridor.
Harry hesitated; unmoving. Killed/ he'd just fallen through the veil, Sirius would just be the other side of the arch. He'd come out; at some point, he'd come out. Fall through.
Yet the veil remained undisturbed. Sirius was lost.
"No!" Harry shouted, turning towards Bellatrix, eyes burning behind his glasses. The cry carried on, echoing through the Department of Mysteries, as Harry ran after the skipping, ecstatic murderer.
From the side, Ginny Weasley watched; unable to follow while she duelled McNair. Yet she watched her boyfriend's progress as he ran.
And River's words were in her head. Harry's going to die here.
Death was on Harry's mind, to be sure; but Sirius's, not his own. He didn't care about his own fate: thought had been obliterated, erased as the event played again and again in his mind, anger burning away all other cares.
Sirius, falling… Sirius, lost…
"Little baby Potter," the mocking child's voice of Bellatrix carried through the entrance hall of the Ministry of Magic. She hovered in the air, ahead, spouting mocking sentences Harry couldn't bear to hear.
She killed him. I'll kill her. Repeated like a mantra in Harry's head.
"Crucio!" Harry shouted, uttering the Unforgivable Curse in the Ministry. He'd have done the same if the Minister, Fudge, himself were there. The curse didn't go far enough, but it was a start at expressing his sheer rage.
Distracted, Bellatrix fell out of the air, but she got to her feet quickly, face contorted to a grin. "Baby Potter's growing up," she simpered. "Never used an Unforgivable Curse have you boy? But you have to mean them. You have to want to cause pain: to enjoy it. I'll give you a lesson-" she drew her wand back.
"Crucio!" the Death Eater shrieked, striking the golden fountain as Harry ducked behind it; a shriek of annoyance, and she ran to follow.
"Stupefy!" he shouted, filled with anger.
Unaware of the nuances of time, Harry didn't care if he caused a paradox: killing Bellatrix before she, somehow, impossibly, started to travel in time. But that rage against her future self forced him onwards now.
"Stupefy!" another shout; he ducked as Bellatrix deflected the curse, before reaching up over the fountain and casting it again.
"Crucio!" this time, her curse struck the Boy Who Lived square on.
Screaming, writhing in agony, Harry fell to the floor. His wand clattered along the floor; Bellatrix stood above him, wand pointed cruelly at the tortured boy.
"The prophecy, boy," she spat, "Give me the prophecy or I'll kill you." She was serious now, no longer playing her games of pain.
"Then you'll have to kill me," Harry forced the words out, from the floor. His glasses were cracked, his wand was out of his hands and eyesight. Yet he just managed to sit up, weakened. "It's gone."
"What"? Bellatrix cried; for a moment, it sounded as if she were afraid. "What do you mean?"
"The prophecy was smashed," Harry murmured, tired.
"Liar!" Bellatrix shrieked, "Crucio!" she shouted, from spite, though the pain inflicted felt less than before: yet still unbearable. Distracted. Then she raised her wand to the air: "Accio prophecy! Accio prophecy!"
"No!" a shriek, from the Death Eater still. Harry could just make out a blurred figure as his scar burned. "I tried Master, I tried!"
"He can't hear you," Harry shouted, struggling to his feet, and managing to put his glasses back on.
"Can't I, Potter?" a high, cold voice spoke.
Silence was left in its wake. Nervous, the Boy Who Lived turned, to see a pale figure standing on the Ministry floor. Dark slits for eyes, and nostrils flat on his face. Lord Voldemort.
Behind him, Bellatrix was repeating apologies again and again: Harry tensed, afraid. When that woman seemed frightened, there was always good reason.
"Leave us Bella," Voldemort spoke; kindly, yet mocking. "I shall deal with you later," he looked at Harry. "I have nothing more to say to you, Potter."
The Dark Lord's voice was quiet. "You have irked me too often, for too long," he lifted his wand in one, inhuman hand, pointing it straight at the unarmed, undefended Harry Potter.
He peeled back his lips, to cast the killing curse: and Dumbledore was not coming to save the boy.
The Doctor, the one who had Dumbledore's body, and Amy. They stood just outside the Room of Requirement; it was still very much there, with only one room sealed away.
The TARDIS was inside; it was that they were there for, yet something else was occupying the Doctor's mind.
"Hey, Doctor," Amy began, frowning. "Could you really have done that, sealed off the Room?"
"Yep," he nodded grimly; then hesitated. "Kind of."
"Kind of?" Amy stopped walking, looking at him incredulously
"Yes, well," he Doctor winced. "Sonic definitely could have, as Snape proved," he paused, exhaling his irritation, "But not with so many people in there. Room reacts to willpower, that many people would've stopped me doing anything. Of course, with just Vetis in there…" his voice trailed off.
The redhead paused, taking it in, and refusing to speak. When she eventually had it straight, she spoke, strangely matter-of-factly.
"You risked everyone's lives on you trying to trick a Daemon with a screwdriver?" she stated, letting each word fall with an almost audible thump.
"Well," the Doctor fiddled with his jacket, "Yes. But it's a sonic," he tacked on the last remark hopefully, as if it would make Amy forgive him.
A tense few seconds passed; the Doctor wilted somewhat, affected more by Amy's glare than several of the monsters he'd fought.
And then the redhead laughed. Still chuckling, she turned to face Dumbledore/Rory: "Can I kiss him?" she said, laughter still resplendent in her tone.
"Uh-um, sure," the man said, hesitant.
Before the Time Lord could react, Amy took a quick step forward, and planted a quick peck on the Doctor's cheeks. She seemed about to try something else, but the Time Lord quickly moved away. The redhead seemed to follow, yet something had somehow gone from the Doctor's eyes, the trace of childlike innocence and amusement he radiated in their conversation had vanished.
In all honesty, it scared her a little; the Time Lord always seemed to be happy, bubbling through anything.
"So," the Doctor began: still missing his usual, bubbly enthusiasm while he spoke. And then his voice dropped to a tantalizingly serious tone; he met 'Rory's' eyes.
"Polyjuice potion doesn't last that long," he said, quite simply, leaving it to the duo to read into that statement.
It was not Rory before them, wearing Dumbledore's body as he had done so often before. It was Albus Dumbledore himself: yet controlled completely and utterly by the menacing Voice from Midnight.
Amy stepped away from him; quickly, sudden, aghast.
"What do you mean?" he spoke, in a passable imitation of Rory's voice.
"You know what I mean," the Doctor replied, unforgiving. "If you were Rory, you'd have turned back by now."
"I-" Rory began
"Don't," the Doctor interjected; "You really don't want to lie to me right now. You've possessed two of my friends, and that's really not a safe place to stand."
A quiet few seconds. Amy cautiously stepped towards the Doctor; the Voice-possessed body was still. Then, in a harsh voice at odds with the kind headmaster's face, it spoke:
"What would you suggest I do?"
"Right then," the Doctor clapped his hands once, "Now we're onto the juicy stuff. Just what should you do? Well, you've been in Dumbledore's head, and mine, so you know what we know. Harry's in the Ministry, and about to die. We're probably going to get there too late: but we have to try."
"I will not leave this body," the Voice spoke, quite clearly, yet somehow forced. "
"Won't you?" the Doctor phrased it like a question, despite the challenging overtones
"You would not harm it."
"We wouldn't, no," the Time Lord met the Voice's eyes; "But we're not the only ones you have to worry about. Out there, Tom Riddle is about to kill the only person stopping him from launching an all-out attack on the wizarding world. Harry's the only person that can stop him, in the future: right now, what this world needs, is Albus Dumbledore. Brilliant Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore. And you're in his body."
"I will survive."
The Voice's simple words put an end to the conversation. When all was said and done, very little was more powerful than a species' instinct to survive: especially for a species that would do anything to avoid returning to its hellish, desolate home planet.
However, if there was one thing that could pose a challenge to the Voice's need to escape Midnight, and to escape any kind of death, it would have to be the Doctor's mind.
"Wouldn't you rather have a better body, then?" the Doctor tilted his head, with false levity, "You're wondering around in that one: yes, it's magic, but it's old. He'll die soon."
Cautious, the Voice met the Doctor's gaze once again. Silent; yet urging the Time Lord to continue.
"I can offer you a better body," he said simply.
"Whose?" the Voice forced the words out of Dumbledore's lips.
Silence; Amy tensed, instinctively knowing just what the Doctor would do.
"Mine," the Time Lord said, simply. As the last echoes of the word faded, he spoke again: "Just think of it. Last of the Time Lords, young body with several hundred years in it yet, and then a couple of regeneration cycles if you want to keep things fresh. And of course, impeccable fashion sense," the Doctor flicked his bow tie.
It was, he reflected, a truly odd experience, to be advertising your own body to a prospective user.
"Doctor-" Amy began
"Don't, Pond," the Doctor span around suddenly; "This is about the whole of Hogwarts, the world. Right now, it's full of temporal tipping points: this is one of them, and if I have to lose control to save Harry, Dumbledore, and Rory, then I will. Without question."
The redhead hesitated; she had nothing to say. Nothing she could say when the Doctor was like this.
"So, what do you say?" the Doctor spread his hands wide, open. "A few conditions though, of course. No wrecking the timelines, and you have to, you absolutely have to let both Dumbledore and Rory go. And you have to keep the bow tie."
Silence. The Voice's body seemed unsure, watching the Doctor's eyes.
"Very well," Dumbledore's elderly frame extended a hand. The Doctor, solemn, moved to hold it.
Barely attention was paid to Rory's limp body, summoned there by the Voice's magic. Amy did sidle close to it, reassuringly holding his unresponsive hand, yet she couldn't tear her eyes away from the Doctor and the Voice.
They stood like that for half a minute, eyes focused on one another, hands tightly holding onto one another.
And then, with almost an anti-climax, Dumbledore staggered away, exhaling, inhaling, weary. In almost the same instant, Rory came to life, blinking, breathing, pulling on Amy's hand.
The Doctor was still.
After making sure her husband was ok, Amy ran forwards, even ignoring Dumbledore, until she stood right in front of the Doctor. No reaction.
"Doctor?" she said, tentative, almost unwilling to see his response.
The standing Time Lord looked up suddenly, meeting her eyes. They focused in on here. Then, seconds later, almost as an afterthought, he intoned: "Doctor." Voice strained.
Yet something was off; it wasn't just the unnatural speech of the Voice, something else…
"Are you…" Amy let her voice trail off, unbelieving.
The Doctor stared deep into her eyes. "Are you," he said, with that same, curious edge to his voice.
From behind her, Dumbledore moved closer, eyes expressing tragedy. He seemed about to speak; Rory stopped him, understanding his wife's need for quiet.
Amy wasn't sad however; she was thinking. That strange tone, that emotion in the Doctor's voice. It reminded her of…laughter?
Rolling her eyes, she spoke again, struggling slightly with the words. "She sells sea shells by the sea shore."
A few seconds, and the Time Lord continued to stare into her eyes. "She sells she-" and at that point, the dramatic effect was lost as he made a mess of the tongue twister.
Rory blinked. "How did you-"
"Oh, easy," the Doctor clapped, skipping once on the spot before grinning. "And I'm really glad it worked, actually. Regenerations!" he tapped his head; "You forget the first step of possession: repetition. The Voice is currently repeating everything number, ooh, six says. And believe me, there wasa guy who could go on, and on, and on…"
Silence. Amy, Rory and Dumbledore stared at the healed Doctor.
"Well don't look so shocked," he grinned, "It's me! Anyway, we need to get you," he hopped over to Dumbledore, "To the Ministry."
They ran for the TARDIS: all the while knowing that it was too late.
If time carried on the way it should have, then Harry Potter would be dead.
Ginny disarmed her opponent, twirling her arm as she did so and then, nimbly avoiding a just-fired curse, she shouted "Stupefy!"
McNair fell, stunned to the ground. Without stopping to turn around, or see if there were any others, she ran down the corridor, after Harry.
The Boy Who Lived lingered in her mind; the echo of River's word brought him back. Harry's going to die here.
If anyone can save him, it'd be you.
So that was just what she was going to do: save him.
And yet she froze, the instant she ran into the entrance hall of the Ministry of Magic: the Dark Lord himself stood by the now-wrecked fountain; Bellatrix appeared to have departed. Wand pointed down at the black haired student. "Avada-"
"Expelliarmus!" Ginny cried, interrupting the curse, uncaring of what would happen to her. Voldemort was about to kill Harry; and she was here to stop that.
The Dark Lord batted the curse away, with ease as well as irritation. He threw a casual curse at Harry, knocking the boy out, and then turned towards Ginny, lifting his wand.
She fired a jet of sparks forward; "Accio," she whispered urgently, as Voldemort easily knocked away her curse. Muttering another spell, she moved Harry's wand back to its rightful, unconscious owner.
With a non-verbal spell, Voldemort threw a searing mass of writhing flame, straight towards the Fourth Year redhead. Eyes wide, she first tried to extinguish the flame and, when that failed, threw up a hasty shield, singing the edges of her hair but nonetheless surviving the assault.
A Fourth Year against the greatest Dark Wizard of all time? For a moment, she felt afraid; and then she remembered. Harry too had done the same, he'd duelled the resurrected Voldemort in the same year as her, after getting the Triwizard Cup.
If he could do it, so could she.
"Incendio!" her own spells seemed woefully inadequate against the maelstroms Voldemort conjured up.
Water from the fountain rose in some great twister, not only quenching her fire, but coming straight for her, a great heaving torrent filled with ghastly shapes; snarling snakes, chimera, and the face of Voldemort.
Instead of trying, most likely in vain, to shield herself against that spell, she used a dash of her own ingenuity. First, she cast a protect charm, in conjunction with a tiring barrage of fire, seemingly trying to evaporate the torrent; and thus hiding herself from the Dark Lord. Then she ran, out from where the great mass would fall.
"Reducto!" she shouted, now aiming for the stone floor beneath Voldemort. A flash of irritation crossed his pale face, as the stone gave way beneath him.
"Expelliarmus!" she cried, highly doubting it would work.
It didn't; leaping, most likely with magical means, the Dark Lord ascended most of the way to the ceiling. Descent; Voldemort stood on the empty air, levitating himself, several metres above Ginny's head.
A flash of light; a parry, a retaliatory flash. They duelled like that for several minutes, a strenuous activity on Ginny's part as she was forced to continually defend, and react in split-second intervals.
And Voldemort was beginning to smile. This was not a duel to him; this was play.
"Aguamenti!" Ginny shouted, at her first opportunity. A stream of crystal clear water poured from the tip of her wand, flooding the Ministry as she continued to block the Dark Lord's casual, crushing blows.
"You have been taught well," Voldemort remarked, delivering a casual curse which almost knocked Ginny to the floor, even with a shield charm raised. "It is a pity this will end so soon." The pale skinned wizard raised his wand
"Incendio!" Ginny cried out the curse, darting sideways, narrowly avoiding a jet of green light.
With that curse, an immensely tiring burst of fire, the water which had covered the Ministry floor evaporated. She didn't know the incantation for a smokescreen; and so relied on this, creating steam, a thick fog which concealed her from the Dark Lord's murderous gaze.
"Most inventive," Voldemort spoke, cruel, mocking.
Ginny quieted her breathing, pressing herself to the now moist floor, and scrambling behind the fountain, relying on the cover of the rising steam.
"Ventus!" the Dark Lord shouted; a powerful gust of wind roared through the chamber, purging all the steam in a matter of seconds. Ginny was thrown a metre across the stone floor.
Ginny opened her eyes, slowly, amazed she was still alive. Carefully, she began to sit up, to get to her feet, when she saw Voldemort standing right above her. Wand pointed directly at her. Pitiless.
Refusing to react to the merciless glare, she got to her feet; resisting the wizard, even when completely subject to his whim.
"Spirited," he commented, "It is almost a pity you belong to a family of blood traitors," his voice was bizarrely light.
"You can talk," Ginny retorted, doing her best to keep Voldemort distracted. Harry's going to die here.. "Your father was a Muggle."
The Dark Lord hissed, drawing his wand back in preparation for a curse.
"Good luck Harry," she murmured, closing her eyes.
A strange, wheezing noise permeated the chamber. Ginny bathed in the oddly comforting sound, hoping it was the sound of help. Had she done enough to save Harry?
Harry awoke, slowly, from Voldemort's stunning spell, just in time to see a blue box form, towards the side of the foyer. He also saw Ginny, wand in her hand, loosely held by her side, with Voldemort thrusting his wand forward, snarling a curse.
A green flash of light. The TARDIS door opened; Dumbledore and the Doctor stepped out. Harry struggled to his feet, only to fall again to his knees; a shout of heartbreak. "NO!"
Ginny Weasley fell back to the ground, eyes closed, strangely serene. Her hair fell in a beautiful pattern, reminiscent of a halo as she touched the cold floor. Lips in one final smile.
If anyone can save him, it'd be you.
"Tom," Dumbledore's aged voice shattered the disbelieving silence. "I had once harboured hope that you could be called back to the good side of magic. You have succeeded in convincing me otherwise, for the first time."
"That would be your problem, old man," the Dark Lord turned, utterly uncaring as to Ginny's death. "Naivety."
And, as was fated, the two extraordinary wizards duelled, neither with any ability nor inclination to hurt the other. Merely to test: and to save Harry's life.
Several days later, it was the end of the term at Hogwarts. Much of the book had gone as planned; save of course, for Ginny's tragic death.
Only the Weasley children to attend Hogwarts had heard it. Their parents had not yet been told; in part because no one was willing to say, in part simply because it was impractical. Yet when the end of term came, they were called to Hogwarts, rather than simply sending the Weasley students home.
The entire Weasley family was in Dumbledore's Office when they heard the news. At first, they hoped it was some kind of sick joke, and then they hoped there was a mistake. Gradually they came to understand it was the truth; their youngest daughter, Ginny, had lost her life to Lord Voldemort.
About a week into the holidays, the Weasley family were still at Hogwarts, along with much of the Order. A day previously, they'd paid their respects to Sirius. Now, they held Ginny's funeral in the school she'd never been able to complete.
On the way to the affair, the Doctor was stopped in the corridor by a familiar voice; "Hello sweetie."
"River," the Time Lord turned around, frowning as he saw the woman
"Just checking up on you," a sly smile. Then she sobered; "You didn't make it before. Or rather after, or," she spoke a Galifreyan term which couldn't be translated to English: a tense referring to the anti-conditional, the could-have-been-but-was-not.
"River," the Doctor repeated; a sigh. "I-"
"Sorry about Ginny," the time travelling woman nodded her head toward the distant funeral. "I told her to go after Harry. If she hadn't, Tom would've killed him, and Hogwarts wouldn't be here right now. Believe me, you'd rather this than that."
"So, are those the rules now? You won't tell me anything except what didn't happen?" the Doctor replied, bemused; able to almost file away his sadness. Not out of heartlessness; out of practise.
"Amazing," River laughed. "If I said that to any other traveller, they'd have complained that I broke a Law of Time, but you… Well, it's not as if we never broke any laws," she licked her lips, "Including a rather fun one on Delta IV."
"I don't think I should be hearing this," the Doctor interrupted. He frowned; "How'd you get away with breaking that law then?"
"Planning on stealing the trick?" River laughed. "It won't work again, not even here. You should've noticed by now; time's elastic, it's being stretched out of shape by Bellatrix. You can't damage broken time."
"So," the Doctor paused. "You know, I'd head to the Yule Ball last year, if I were you."
"Are you asking?" River smiled, blatantly flirting.
"Spoilers," the Doctor retorted.
"Well put," a laugh; "No spoilers from me either. Well, maybe one. The next time we meet, I'll slap you for something you haven't done yet."
"I look forward to it," the Doctor bowed his head
"I remember it well," River smiled.
A flash; and the mysterious woman vanished.
The Doctor soon grew serious again, turning to walk down the corridor. Ginny's funeral was ahead, in just a few minutes.
He couldn't believe she was dead: in both an emotional and logical point of view. Such a key point to the books, made meaningless. And the woman herself, the lovable, strong Ginny Weasley herself.
Fred and George stood in the corridor further down, just before the Great Hall: where the rest of the Weasley family were, in mourning. The Doctor slowed as he reached the redheads, instinctively feeling a pang of time-gone-wrong.
"You two," the Doctor went up to them, voice cracking. "Job for you."
"Is this- is this the best time?" Fred/George said; audibly upset, though their words didn't sound it. Escape through humour; their normal practise.
"Don't come to Hogwarts next year," the Doctor said
"We're listening," George/Fred said suddenly; dry. Tears could be heard, withheld, in the quip.
"The world needs laughter, now more than ever. You two especially can tell that; and I reckon you're going to be the best at supplying it. Harry's Triwizard winnings, a rather nice property in Diagon Alley…" the Doctor let his voice trail off.
He left the twins looking at each other; thoughtful. It'd be a while until they recovered from Ginny's death enough to put the plan into action: but when they did, it would be another small thing putting time back on the correct path.
The Great Hall: the tables had been cleared to the side, and the only people there were the Weasley family, and close friends; including Harry and Dumbledore. Much of the Order.
In the centre of the room, tranquil, lay Ginny: eyes closed as they were all that time ago, in the Ministry, still radiant, possibly with a kindly charm. She faced the distant, night-time ceiling, hands loosely by her sides.
Amy and Rory stood together, far from the wizards and witches; they knew Ginny as a character in a book, more than anything. It was a testament to the girl's likability that they too were almost as affected as her family.
Quiet, Harry drifted to her motionless head, standing by the halo of red hair, still spread out.
One solitary drop fell from his eyes, trickling over the curve of his cheek. Still silent, he lifted a finger, brushing away the salty droplet.
There was something strangely moving about the sight. The man standing over the body of the woman he would have married, had time proved true.
Ginny smiling. Ginny laughing. Ginny moving closer. Ginny-
A green flash. Ginny falling; Ginny dying on the cold floor of the Ministry.
"Goodbye," a heartbroken whisper.
On a related note, the story set in Year Six will be called Loss.