Hello everyone! After literally years of reading and reviewing anonymously (as Silently Watching) on this site, I have finally written an actual story. It's a tiny drabble that popped into my head while I was in the car two weeks or so ago and just refused to move out. I know it is overdramatic, but it just fit the content better than a more serious take. Any more stories will be more palatable.

Since it's my first story, I would really appreciate it if you would take the time to review, even if you don't have an account. Praises will be gratefully accepted (not that I'm expecting many of those!), constructive criticisms will be welcomed with open arms, but flames will either be ignored or, if they look like they were written by a five year old, laughed heartily at. Thank you all very much for reading!

Disclaimer: Did Harry name one of his children after one man who knowingly left him in an abusive environment and another who was obsessed with his mother? If so, then I don't own the Harry Potter franchise; it belongs to J.K. Rowling, Scholastic Press, Warner Bros., and whoever else she sold the rights to.

There were many things one could call Harry Potter, but "coward" was not one of them. He had killed a thousand year old basilisk, fought over a hundred Dementors, and won a war, all without batting an eye and in the time most wizards took to graduate from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. This courage and dedication to Good had not fled him once Voldemort was dead; he worked tirelessly, first as an Auror and now as the Director of the DMLE, to protect all of Magical Britain from the ravages of Dark witches and wizards. But, with all his experience, he had never encountered a conflict as intense or a price as high as what now lay before him.

He looked over the battlefield, cringing at the progress the forces of darkness had made since the day had started. Many of his warriors, men who had fought alongside him through thick and thin, had fallen this day. Their sacrifices would be honored, but not right now; now, he only had time to counter the maneuvers of the enemy.

Harry shifted his gaze over to the opposing leader, the Dark Lady who had personally threatened him and his children with the cruelest torture imaginable, one so horrifying that he would dare not speak its name. As a young man, he never understood why so many people feared to call Voldemort by his nom de guerre; he now regretted his exasperation with them. The woman flipped back her blonde hair, silver eyes sparkling with amusement, her actions declaring that she truly did not even consider him a threat. Unfortunately, with the losses his men were taking, he had to admit that that position was an understandable one. She leaned casually into her throne, taking a moment to simply savor his dread.

"Are you sure you want to go through with this, Harry? Would it not be easier to concede your defeat now? This doesn't have to be as painful as you make it out to be, and I'm sure I can… make it worth your while."

Harry made no response except to glare at the woman. If it had been only himself that was in danger, he might have taken her up on the offer, but she also meant to include his children! His parents had laid down their lives to protect him, and he was more than willing to do the same. He would push her back as long as he still had soldiers willing to follow his commands.

He returned his attention to the battle, looking desperately for some strategy, some ploy that she did not expect, anything to turn the tide. Finally, he found it; a pathway to certain salvation.

"Knight to E6." The white piece captured its counterpart, leaving checkmate in only three moves. "Do you still think you're guaranteed to win?"

The blonde only turned a haughty grin in his direction. "Bishop to D2, check. And yes, I do."

Harry started. When had that piece moved into range? His attack could wait until he was no longer in immediate danger. "King to B1."

"Poor, poor Harry. Rook to B2. Mate."

He could not believe it. He had been so close, just a few moves would have granted him victory. Now, he had nothing left, no options but to face the consequences.

His opponent laughed. "Now that your silly challenge is over, love, we can start shopping for shoes. But since you tried to put it off for so long, you can give me a foot massage first."

His head hanging low, he knelt to the floor, trying valiantly to ignore the tears of his sons, as well as his daughter's traitorous smirk. He had tangled with Tom "I am Lord Voldemort" Riddle, Albus "It's for the Greater Good, my boy" Dumbledore, Severus "As arrogant as your father" Snape, and Ron "Lea'e me a'one, I' ea'in'" Weasley, but he knew the truth: there had never been a villain as great or terrible as Luna Potter nee Lovegood when she felt her closet was empty.

Harry, Harry, Harry. You married a Ravenclaw; you are never going to win an argument or a game of strategy against her! Now, I would love nothing more than to stay here and chat with all of you, but I see another plot bunny bouncing around my front yard, so I need to go out there and get to work. Remember, review please!

Silently Watches out.