Taking Charge

A Harry Potter Fanfiction

by Drauchenfyre

Characters: Samuel Glyphs, Minerva McGonagall, Severus Snape

Summary: Dumbledore may be senile, but what excuse does the rest of the staff have?


"TROLL! IN THE DUNGEON! Thought you ought to know..."

And with that, John Quirinus Quirrell faceplanted on the floor. A second later, the Hall exploded in screams and panic. A Cannonblast charm from Dumbledore's wand silenced the screaming students.

"Prefects, lead your Houses back to the dormitories..."


Anybody with military experience would recognize that tone- a commanding bellow that veteran sergeants mastered to demand obedience... which of course meant only a handful of Muggleborn "army brats" recognized the tone Samuel Glyphs, Runes Professor, used to cut across Dumbledore's orders.

Fury clearly written on his face, Glyphs rounded on the venerable Headmaster. "Are you INSANE, Albus? A teacher comes tearing in here screaming about a troll in the dungeons, and you want to send students through the halls? Did you forget that both Slytherin and Hufflepuff have their dorms in the Dungeons? Did I miss the part where having a Prefect badge requires the ability to take down a full-grown Troll?"

Albus, a little rattled, nodded and said, "Yes, of course, Samuel, you are right. How would you suggest we proceed?"

Glyphs looked around the room with a steely gaze, seeing the hope and fear in those eyes. This was what the Marine Corps trained him for- taking charge in a crisis. "Prefects- head count, NOW! I want the name of every student not in this Hall, and I want them five minutes ago! We are in a large room with limited access, we keep the students here and guard the entrances. Septima, Aurora, you stand watch at the back doors. Hagrid!" Glyphs picked up his chair and transfigured it into a heavy war hammer, which he tossed to the gentle half-giant. "You have the main door, Hagrid. That troll gets in here over your dead body, got me?"

Hagrid, looking grimmer than any student ever saw before, nodded and marched to his post. Glyphs turned to the ethereal teacher in the seat next to him. "BINNS! RISE AND SHINE!" The ghostly professor started awake, and looked his living colleague in confusion. "Troll in the dungeon. Organize the ghosts and sweep the school. I want locations on every living being in this castle pronto!" Binns nodded and bolted across the room, the other attending ghosts drifting into his wake.

"Poppy, check on Quirrell." Madam Pomfrey nodded, already halfway there. "PREFECTS, WHERE'S MY COUNT?"

Adrian Pucey called out, "Slytherin, present and accounted for!"

Penelope Clearwater called out, "Ravenclaw, all present!"

'Don't-Call-Me-Nymphadora' Tonks added, "Hufflepuff, all present and accounted for!"

With a muttered curse, Percy Weasley called, "I'm down a first year-Hermione Granger isn't here!"

Harry Potter, in a panic, called out, "She's in the second floor girl's loo! She was crying because of something Ron called her after class!"

Samuel Glyphs almost cursed as well, but held his tongue in a room full of students. "Albus, Filius- you're our best duelists. When the ghosts report back with the troll's location, you go after him. Min, Sev- we've got a student to retrieve."

With that, Samuel Glyphs vaulted over the table and hit the ground running, closely followed by Professors McGonagall and Snape, all three with their wands out.


The three teachers glided through the halls, intent on their destination. Severus felt compelled to speak. "Samuel, I know we've had our differences, but I was impressed by your tactical thinking on the fly back there. Where did you learn that?"

Glyphs smirked at the Potions Master and replied, "Allow me to re-introduce myself- Gunnery Sergeant Samuel J. Glyphs, United States Marine Corps Retired. I served ten years in the Mage Division as a Ward-Breaker before my medical discharge. Trust me- I wouldn't have made Gunny if I hadn't learned to lead in a crisis."

The conversation halted as they rounded a corner into a wall of stench. All three were startled at the sight of a full-grown mountain troll entering a room dead ahead of them.

"Min, please tell me that door isn't the one I think it is."

"I'm afraid so, Samuel. That's the bathroom that Miss Granger is supposed to be in."

"Damn," hissed Glyphs. "Okay, Sev- you and I will distract the beast. Min, once we have its attention, you slip past us, get Miss Granger, and get her back to the Great Hall. Let's go!"

At a full run, Glyphs launched a Reductor Curse, turning the door to matchsticks, then launched a transfiguration at the club in the troll's raised hand.

The troll, hearing the crash, turned and saw wizards running at it. He roared and raised his club-arm again.

Snape smirked and said, "And you'll do what, exactly- hit me with that-fish?" The troll glimsed its club, now transfigured into a large, floppy tuna. It looked as confused as the troll holding it.

With a cry of "Lumos Maximus!", Glyphs launched a burst of light into the beast's eyes, blinding it as McGonagall and Miss Granger slipped out the door.

Samuel's eyes darted around. "Sev, remind me- what's above this room?"

Severus had to think a moment: "An empty classroom, hasn't been used in years, why-?" Then the answer clicked in his head. "You cannot be serious."

Samuel smirked, "You'd rather get in a bare-knuckle fight with a troll?" His wand was already pointing at the ceiling above the troll.

Snape blinked, pointed his wand up, and muttered, "Fair enough..."

With a simultaneous cry of "BOMBARDA!", the two professors turned and dove through the door as the ceiling collapsed on the troll, crushing its skull (and parts south).

Picking themselves up, both men dusted themselves off, then looked at the rubble-filled room.

"Glad I don't have to clean that up."


An explosion from the direction of the Entrance Hall grabbed their attention.

"Please tell me that's the Weasley Twins playing with fireworks."

"Since when are we that lucky?"

Both men turned and ran for the Entrance Hall.


The two arrived in the Entrance Hall to a bizarre sight. Quirrell, sans turban, was hovering in the middle of the hall, a deformed face growing from the back of his head as he successfully batted aside spells from both Dumbledore and Flitwick. Lawrence Kettleburn, the Care of Magic Creatures teacher, was crumpled against the far wall, (hopefully) unconscious.

"Crap. An active possession. This is gonna get messy." A pair of foot-wide shuriken slid out of Glyphs's sleeves into his empty hands.

"You're going to kill him?"

"Quirrell's already dead, his body hasn't gotten the owl yet. Work your way over to Larry and check if he's still alive."

Snape nodded and moved to the left. Glyphs launched the shuriken in his left hand, quickly followed by his right.

'Quirrell' must have heard or felt the disturbance, and ducked away at the last second, spinning toward the Runemaster with a snarl, and launched a fusillade of nasty-looking curses, forcing Glyphs to dive behind a pillar. Glyphs let loose a sharp whistle between his teeth.

Responding to the embedded magical commands, Samuel's Return Blades arced around and returned to him by the most expedient course- one Blade lancing through the Defense Professor's wand-arm, severing it just above the elbow. The Blades thudded, one after the other, into the pillar Samuel hid behind.

Scrambling with his off-hand for his falling wand, the possessed professor left himself wide-open for the combined attacks of Flitwick and Dumbledore, and quickly was bound and unconscious.

Wands trained on the bound professor, Albus, Filius and Samuel approached him. A dark cloud began to rise from his form, moving towards Dumbledore. 'You will not defeat me, Albus Dumbledore. I am Immortal, I am unstoppable!'

Glyphs snapped his wand into an almost-forgotten movement and declared, "SANCTUS LUXOR!" A blinding white light pierced the cloud, causing an unearthly scream, as the cloud turned and bolted out the door.

Samuel Glyphs, watched it retreat, then turned to the other Professors and growled, "Anyone else wanna find and beat the hell out of whatever idiot taught Voldemort how to make a Horcrux?"