He would escape soon, Harry had decided as he stared into the dirty smudges along the stone floor.

It sounded much easier in his head, but Harry understood the consequences of trying to escape the Dark Lord's clutches. He knew that if he were to flee, and somehow escape, he would have no where to go. His friends were either dead quite literally or dead figuratively to Harry. They had betrayed him in the worst possible way, yet even now- bloodied and bruised- Harry could not find it in himself to simply hate them. He supposed he understood, to a certain extent, why they did it. And he also supposed that they felt they didn't have a choice (though Harry knew that everyone had a choice). But somehow, he felt rather apathetic in regards to the men and women who traded him for protection against an insane Dark Lord's wrath.

They had been losing the war and everyone knew it: the thought twisting through their minds like an infection, tainting their thoughts and glances and actions. People died in startling numbers, and the deadly clashes seemed to be getting more destructive and attention drawing. Harry knew that if those kinds of battles continued the muggles would notice, if some hadn't already. However he also knew giving up was not an option, at least for the Boy-Who-Lived. He had a role to fulfill and regardless of what he wished (wanted, hoped, dreamed), he knew he had to follow through with it until the very end. If not he, then who? He had acted his assigned part all of his life, within both the muggle and wizard world, but had never truly taken action to change. Life was a bit easier this way, and it was because of this way of thinking so much more tragedy happened.

He could not blame everything on the manipulative but wise Headmaster, nor the insane and death scared Dark Lord. He couldn't even blame it on the kind but grief stricken werewolf that could have taken him in after his parents death but didn't. And although he couldn't blame everything on himself, he knew his attitude and view on the world had simply added fuel to the flames that destroyed what little of a life he had had. There was just so much that he could have done (could have, would have, should have-), but it was a useless thought to him now, and he had stopped thinking these what if's long ago. If there was one thing he had learned while staying with sadistic death-eaters, it was that the world was unfair and it only wasted energy to hate and curse it.

Somehow he felt nothing, and though he screamed when the cloaked wizards came into his cell to burn flesh from bone and scar his skin, he couldn't find it in himself to hate them. That wasn't to say he suddenly thought of them in a positive light, of course. He did not yet reach the level of insanity that he began to wish for their visits to his cell and pray for the sting of lashes and the burn of potions. Instead, he felt nothing- a blank and dark numbness that cloaked his being regardless of pain and presence. They were simply more shadows that covered his already tarnished soul and he felt nothing towards them.

He screamed and sometimes even cried, and yet he never begged, because who were they that they deserved to decide his fate? (Begging is mercy, is power, is not there's to have-)

So he would escape, maybe.

He knew that the chance of him being successful was slim-to-none. He also knew that if he somehow did escape, he would have no where to go, and no one to go to. And yet despite these understandings a laughed bubbled its way up his throat, gritty and destructive as his already burning throat protested the sound. Anything was better than taking this pain and giving back nothing, his mind whispered.

It had nothing to do with revenge, or hate, or love, or honor, or pride. It had to do with fate, and how Harry could only find himself hating this one word, and the darkness in his life paled in comparison.

He watched with acid eyes as cloaks swished into existence, flowing and fluttering as if they were smoke taunting and showing Harry the aftermath of their destructive power. And yet they were only smoke, not the flame, and Harry felt like laughing again because they were only but small nuisances to his fading existence. And Harry knew he was perhaps a little twisted, and yet he found that he had the same feeling for his change of personality as he did with everything else: nothing.

He simply laughed as he watched the smoke float into his cell, masks of pearl glinting in the light of their spells and illuminating the crimson of the floor.

And he continued to laugh, even as the life faded from his eyes, and the sanity slipped from his mind.


The sky was dark.

Bleak gray clouds shrouded the sky (sun or moon, day or night?), rain pelting the ground and thunder sounding like death. But he knew that death was better than what he had, and so he ignored the ominous signs. There were worse things than death.

He knew that he may die- that he would probably die- but he found he didn't care for his maybe death. He only wanted to prove, for once and for all, that fate would not control him. He would not be broken in such a way, and so he waited with a patience he seemed to acquire in his years in darkness. And as the wizards came to play, he killed them silently with their own wands and a quick snap of the neck, and never looked back.

He felt his skin ripple and change, and he flew into the sky as rain hit his newly formed wings and made him stagger, and yet he never looked back, knowing he would soon be found out if he hadn't been already. He flew until the wind became to much and it seemed to pull him to the mud of the earth, his wings twisting oddly and his eyes splashed with dirt and water.

But he stood, and ignoring his useless arm and blooded face, slowly finished the transformation and ran further into the forest whose shadows only seemed to accept him. He didn't know how long he ran, or how far, but when he collapsed to his knees and his pulse slowed, he found himself laughing once more.

And as the rain washed away his blood, he tilted his face to the sky to face the foe he had only just defeated, and laughed even more at the foe he seemed unable to escape.

He laughed until somehow those giggles became sobs and his posture become slumped and clear water became black with dirt and blood.

And he understood, because the crimson eyes across the clearing told him his fate, and his fate was sealed.