Disclaimer: The Harry Potter universe belongs to JK Rowling.
A/N: Here we are again, standing at the start of another story whose word count far exceeded what I had originally planned.
But before you begin, let me state that if you are looking for a story similar to MHDSR (my first fic), look elsewhere. This one is worlds apart and has an entirely different genre and plot that deviates greatly from canon. For one thing, it's set in medieval Europe. That is, if you were to take Harry and mix him together with Camelot, this is kind of what you'd get.
Also, after you've read a few chapters, you'll start to wonder whether or not this is actually a Harry/Draco story. Trust me, it is. It just takes a while to get there. For those of you who have read MHDSR, you know I take my sweet time with romance =)
Hope you enjoy it!
Gryffindor and Slytherin
Our tale begins long before you were born, my young friend.
A time when griffins roamed the skies, dragons prowled through the earth, magic was the language of life, and the genesis of mankind had only just begun on this thriving land. A time when the Empire had not yet been established.
It is in this time that two young boys were born. Only babies, but destined to be more.
From infancy to youth, they grew up side by side, creating a bond of friendship so tight, scarce little could separate them. Although not related by blood, Godric and Salazar were closer than brothers.
They spent all their time together: riding wild horses across the Nullius Planes; sparring with sharpened tree branches on the edge of the Haldor Cliffs; and swimming in the crystalline, blue waters of Sevan Lake. They were inseparable. Salazar, being a year older, took it upon himself to care for and even teach his younger friend things Godric did not know; things like Salazar's strange ability to speak to snakes.
As youths, the two friends would let their imagination run wild. They created stories of a time in the future when they would both be mighty kings of even mightier kingdoms.
"We'll call our kingdoms Gryffindor and Slytherin!" Salazar suggested with a laugh.
By early manhood, the boys had grown into handsome, strong, and almost fearless young men. Salazar, a half foot taller than his friend, had black hair that stood atop a fierce and determined face, though his bright blue eyes broke his rough demeanor. Godric, on the other hand, sported hair of chestnut brown and olive-coloured eyes. His face was kind and young, with a defined masculine line to his jaw. Together, they made young women swoon.
Their names were known not only in their own village, but also in the neighboring towns. Their popularity increased in the coming months and years, and soon, they were granted equal nobility in their land.
It seemed nothing, or no one, could stand in between the two.
Until one day, someone did.
Not much is known of her history, but legend passed down from generation to generation, says that a woman of the rarest beauty captured the heart of young Salazar. Her name was Ciara, from the Eastern Lands.
The friendship between Godric and Salazar trembled with instability, as Salazar spent his time doting on Ciara, wooing her and promising her the world. He proclaimed his undying love for her.
What Salazar was not aware of was his friend's similar attraction towards Ciara, though Godric kept silent about it.
Godric and Ciara spent the early mornings together, watching the sunrise and picking wildflowers, until she returned back to the village, to spend her afternoons with Salazar.
Time passed in this fashion, until Ciara discovered that a love kindled in her heart for only the younger of the two friends, though she let her feelings remain hidden to Salazar. She found she treasured her time with Godric far more than her time with Salazar.
Under Salazar's blind eye, the two young friends confessed their love for each other. Devoid of any traditional ceremony of marriage, they pledged themselves to each other, but promised to keep it silent.
Their secret, although well kept, was inevitably found out.
Unplanned by the two lovers, Ciara fell pregnant. As her stomach began to curve with early maternity, Salazar's blind eye was opened. His anger was released like a thunderous storm. Godric begged for his forgiveness, but his pleas fell on deaf ears. With intense hatred and humiliation, Salazar battled his friend.
Villagers flocked as the two strongest and most feared men of the land declared war. And before long, allies were formed. Citizens took sides and formed forces behind the two men. Their battle waged on, until the entire land was divided down the middle. Legend says their battle lasted for months. During this bloody time, armies were created and the kingdoms that the two childhood friends had dreamed of, Gryffindor and Slytherin, were established.
As months of war dragged on, Godric ordered an indestructible Sword to be made by his blacksmiths. It was delivered to him the following day.
The weapon was a sight to behold.
Longer than all other blades, and with a hilt encrusted with blood-red rubies, the Red Sword struck fear into the hearts of those that dared to venture near it. With every swipe, the steel sang shrilly. Summoning the Deep Magic within him, Godric infused the blade with supernatural powers, containing within its metal the strength to defeat his enemy.
With this Sword, he fought Salazar. Myths proclaim that with every thrust and strike of this legendary Sword, thunder rumbled and sparks flew. With all his might, Godric wrestled his friend.
Soon after this, however, his beloved Ciara died giving birth. On the eve of the New Year, Alexander was born. Despite the blessing of new life, Godric mourned her death. He could not find it within himself to fight his enemy at this time. He asked for a ceasefire, if only for a handful of days.
Salazar, however, did not rest. Upon hearing of the birth of his enemy's son, he devised a wicked plan. As the sun set on the night after Alexander was born, Salazar's dark minions stormed the Gryffindor castle and captured its heir. The screaming babe was taken hostage.
Godric, in anguish over Ciara's death and tired from the endless months of battle, marched into his enemy's land and struck a bargain with his enemy. He would sacrifice himself, if Salazar would let Alexander go back to Gryffindor, and there remain.
As all stories worth telling go, Salazar had other plans. In Godric's moment of weakness, he struck him down with a fierce blow, driving his ruthless sword into his enemy's heart. He retrieved Godric's Sword and ran it into the ground before his corpse, until it was buried to the hilt. Then and there, he declared a curse upon Gryffindor, coupled with unfathomable magic.
"I declare a curse in this dark hour:
The Griffin, struck down and stripped of power.
Mark my words, for he is slain,
Never again will my enemy reign,
Lest this Sword be retaken,
By the same blood; ever forsaken.
It shall come to pass only then,
As the Snake and Griffin war again."
With Gryffindor without its king, Slytherin thrived. Alexander, still a baby, was declared the heir of Slytherin. Salazar, drunk with his victory, caroused and celebrated in intoxicated revelry, mocking his fallen enemy, while the citizens of Gryffindor were scattered and made lower than slaves.
To all, it seemed that the story ended here.
And it did.
Until fifteen hundred years later, when a young boy happened upon a forgotten secret.
Next Chapter: The curse unearthed.