~ Deliverance ~
Summary: The Avengers could handle anything from kittens in trees to Earth invasions. The group labelled "Thirteen" on the other hand were another matter entirely.
Warning: Slash, violence, dimension travel, insanity, power struggles
Pairings: Loki/Harry, Voldemort/Harry (one-sided)
Disclaimer: As much as I would like, I do not own either Harry Potter or Avengers.
~ Parseltongue ~
~ Chapter One ~
Harry groaned as white light blinded him from above so much like the Hogwarts Infirmary he couldn't help the tear escaping from his eye. Yet this wasn't Hogwarts, this wasn't home. It wasn't even his world. No everything had been left behind in an attempt to escape not that it helped with the lingering screams in the back of his memory.
The stark white of the room he found himself in didn't compare to the Hospital Wing at all. There was no Madam Pomfrey fussing over him, no friends to comfort him. The room was completely artificial. Four walls, a ceiling, and a floor kept him contained leading him to believe he was surrounded by muggles. Not that he truly cared. That only meant they'd been discovered before they could begin waking… before they could do any harm.
Sitting up he noted they'd been moved and set up to mirror their original position. Whoever had discovered them had taken the time to make certain their movement wouldn't disturb their slumber.
His eyes narrowed upon the drawling voice. From across their enclosure of glass he could see Lucius standing in his first position. Beside him, separated by another slide of glass was his son. Glass separated all seven of the waking members as well as those remaining asleep. They were together and yet separated. Harry smirked inwardly, praising whoever had the foresight to do so.
Harry uttered no reply, instead merely turning to see the other members who had awoken. Beside Draco stood Amycus Carrow, her brother Alecto beside her, and followed by Barty Crouch Junior. Not any of them were people he particularly felt the need to speak with. Their clock-like positioning also made it rather difficult to do so with any semblance of privacy.
Not that it mattered. Amycus and Alecto were lost in their own little world more than likely discussing weaponry in their rather insane tones. Barty wasn't much better, eyes darting around for a way to escape and cause trouble. Scratches upon the glass hinted at an escape attempt or several yet the glass remained unbreakable. Only Lucius and Draco remained somewhat normal if not terribly aristocratic and inflexible.
Then there was the person standing beside him. Harry slide of the white slab he'd been resting on, legs shaking from lack of use. Severus stared at him, black eyes wrought with emotion. Relief was amongst the strongest. Harry turned away from the gaze only to face the outside of their clock pattern.
"So nice of you to join us amongst the living Seven perhaps now we'll get an explanation."
He didn't flinch as lights lit up from the other side of the glass. Within the glass that circled their waking group stood several people, all of who looked tense. The man in front, who had spoken, was dark skinned reminding him of Kingsley yet his demeanour left much to be desired. A patch covered his left eye and he wore nothing but black. It matched his expression.
The remainder of the group were rather unusual. Two muscly blonds, one cocky rich guy in sunglasses, a short shy man, a man with a bow, and a stoic red-haired woman made up the group. They appeared as confident as they could but Harry could see they were all cautious of him. At least the one in black leather and the woman kept their emotions as closed off as possible.
Certainly they weren't regular military. The group was highly mismatched and appeared slightly uncomfortable together. Whether that was because their dynamic was off or they had something they'd disagreed upon, Harry couldn't pinpoint. It mattered very little either way. They were the power within this world.
Harry glanced curiously at the rest of the woken group and only saw contempt. No doubt they'd already gone through this questionnaire with very little speaking done on their part. Harry twitched. The likelihood any of The Circle would speak to strangers without their Master was doubtful. This team before him shouldn't have bothered.
Turning towards Severus, he watched as the man shook his head silencing him with a look. The man with the eye patch snarled obviously accepting that Harry wouldn't speak to them.
"Seven should know better than to speak to lesser beings. They aren't worthy to be seen by the noble line."
A tongue flicked out as eyes danced in mirth. Harry reframed from reacting to the taunt. Noble, there was nothing noble about Slytherin. Yet with that sentence everything around Harry faded from mind. Severus was the only one to keep his attention.
"This wasn't part of the plan." He accused.
Harry knew that his fellow detainees weren't pleased he was speaking about internal affairs what with others present. However he knew even if the group left they would have ways of monitoring their words. He was merely granting them a front row seat.
"Our magic has been altered with our journey. The Dark Lord couldn't have managed with your arrangement as well. It is a miracle we made it across."
Severus spoke without so much as opening his mouth. Legillimency, Harry's mind supplied, the words however did little to sooth his ire.
"He could have managed the task I asked of him. However he would have been left powerless in a world designed for power not of our own."
The group monitoring them gave a start when he replied to unspoken words. Yet he noticed they kept note of it. They would know now that Severus was capable of projecting his thoughts into someone's mind. He didn't need spoken words to speak. Hopefully they would link the ability to telepathy and prepare themselves accordingly.
"He can't protect us; protect you, if he is powerless." Severus insisted.
Harry glanced at the centre of their clock where he knew the Dark Lord still slept. He would be the last to wake. All Harry could hope was that he had enough power to leave before then otherwise he would be trapped within this group. If he didn't leave before that time, Voldemort would never let him go. He would become trapped in a hunt with madmen hungry for power. Frowning, Harry turned back towards Severus.
"What do you mean protect me?"
He hadn't missed that part. Severus didn't misspeak even when using Legillimency. For an intellect words were sharp weapons. The fact he'd placed emphasis on protecting Harry wasn't lost within the words. No there was emotion behind those words and he needed to hear them.
"My stipulation that I joined his group was that you be apart as well. I would not leave you in that dying world."
Harry's eyes narrowed, instantly displeased. While Severus was an accomplished Potions Master and Legillimens there were times when he simply couldn't lie especially if it was towards Harry. There was something he refused to mention. He didn't have to ask why he was part of the stipulation. Severus provided the answer.
"I couldn't join this group and survive without you. I made a vow to protect you, Lily's son, a vow in which I can't back out of. If I were to leave you behind it would mean leaving you to your death. I couldn't allow that." Severus whispered. "The Dark Lord agreed that you would be a worthy associate with a great power so he permitted you also to take a place within The Circle. It helped that you are able to speak Parseltongue. He couldn't refuse once I'd shown him proof."
Harry flinched away from Severus leaning against the white slab at his back. This couldn't be happening. Once again he was being handed to someone without his knowledge. The first time, he'd been handed over to the Dursley's by Dumbledore. Now he was being handed over to Voldemort by Severus.
"So in protecting me you're also protecting yourself." His words were bitter. "It's merely convenient I happen to have great power and the ability to speak a near dead language."
He shook in rage. The last time he'd been this angered he'd blown up several objects in Headmaster Dumbledore's office. Fawkes hadn't been pleased with his demonstration. However Dumbledore had permitted the outburst given his sudden loss. This time however was completely different. The stinging betrayal he felt was nothing compared to grief.
This concerned him. He knew the anger would eventually spill out and in this location anything could happen. It didn't help that the group watching was tense with the knowledge he'd provided them. They didn't know if he was a friend or a foe. Currently however they merely wanted the knowledge and so did he.
Taking a deep breath, he chose to ask, "What does he plan to do with this world?"
He held many questions but this was the one that concerned him the most. He wouldn't permit the Dark Lord to simply use him for his greed. He wasn't a toy, or a pawn. Even if he held great power, even if this group were the last of his kind, he wouldn't go against his beliefs.
"He plans to use this planet for his purposes. The Dark Lord means to rule this world with his divine presence. He means to rule it with you by his side."
The words came out with such reverence, with such utter pride for Harry, he snarled. The glass wall between Severus and him cracked with a bang causing everyone present to flinch. The show of power was small compared to others he could do but Severus had angered him. Yet he cared very little.
"Seven's angry better watch it Six." Lucius drawled.
"You'd do well to learn to keep your mouth shut as well." Harry spoke, cold seeping into his voice.
He tired of this. The knowledge that he was present because of his worth didn't sit well with him. He would have preferred to remain behind with his friends. They would have enjoyed what time they had left. At least they would have been together. Living like this, with only these madmen, wasn't what Harry desired from life especially if he managed to get a second chance.
He stared at those that slept. Amongst them were Augustus Rookwood, Rabastan, Rudolphus, and Bellatrix Lestrange, along with Mulciber. Then there was the Dark Lord. Nails bit into skin. If he remained here only bad would happen. This world would be in danger regardless of how strong those that stood against them were. Harry made his decision.
With the other six of his group too startled to speak, he turned towards the defenders of this world. As informative as this talk was for them they would need more information. If he could grant them such a large advantage against the Dark Lord then he would gladly join them. However there were a few small details he wanted to go through before he signed up to anything.
"Before," he started, "when you asked me for an explanation, what exactly did you seek from me?"
The group behind the glass all exhaled. Harry could see their relief however he wasn't about to agree to anything just yet. He wouldn't attack them for now but he would defend himself. Eye patch stepped forward whilst the others remained behind content in the shadows. It mattered little though as he could feel their excitement.
"What is your name?"
The question was a test, Harry realized. They wanted to know if he could speak the truth to them, if, when prompted, he could be honest with them regarding personal truths. Harry didn't see the point to this. If he didn't want to speak something he wouldn't. It was as simple as that.
Severus pressed against the glass with a beseechingly look. Harry ignored him as he spoke.
"My name is Harry James Potter but it seems you've been calling my Seven because of my position in waking."
No reason to lie there. He wasn't about to keep his name from them. There was no need. Names didn't have any power over him and he was certain they held little over his forming allies. The nod from the woman confirmed to them all he was speaking the truth.
The six behind him began to all press frantically against the glass finally understanding what was occurring. Lucius and Draco appeared quite humorous, Harry thought, as they continued to stalk around angrily. However he knew they weren't angry towards him but rather the group he was speaking with. They couldn't become angry at one of their own for being "led astray" but those Harry spoke to were fair game.
Eye patch ignored them and continued his questions.
"Can you identify those that are with you?"
Harry frowned. What did he mean by that? The question sounded double-sided yet he couldn't understand what exactly was meant by it. The six he arrived with he knew. He knew them intimately. However if he meant those that were on standing behind him then he knew only what he could pick up from their stances. In the end he decided to answer as simple as possible.
"I can name the people I stand with behind the glass. Is that what you desire?"
The group glanced at each other taking in his words. Obviously he hadn't spoken exactly what they desired right now. However with their current way of speaking he was honestly becoming confused.
Granted he could give them any information he wanted. First, however, they weren't being very specific. If they desired to know more about the others abilities then they would have to work their questions carefully. Second, if they believed he was going to release sensitive information while around this group they had another thing coming.
Harry might not have enjoyed being around them but he wasn't suicidal. Speaking of those terms would have guaranteed his death regardless of his usefulness. Right now his "group" believed that he was being otherwise misled. He'd allow them to think that for quite some time yet. As it was, they were still attempting to get Harry to look at them in an attempt to break eye contact. None of them realized muggles were different and that was his advantage.
Eye patch frowned. "Perhaps later, what I need now is to know why you are here. What is your plan?"
Harry twitched, the glass cracking further and flicking shards at Severus who howled in pain. Everyone before him moved towards a weapon as he attempted to calm down. This wasn't the time to become angered by their words. They didn't know any better and if he was correct, they were the only way out of this prison. He had to play nice to be freed even if they stirred his temper. He needed to give them what they wanted.
They had been paying close attention yet he still disliked being grouped with these psychos. Harry knew however he would need to get over it quickly. They were likely to do this for quite some time until he could build their trust. Information was the swiftest way to start this.
"I don't have a plan for this world." He spoke with great calm. "But I can grant you other insights if you'd like."
The red haired woman caught something in his gaze and immediately pulled the group together. Harry hoped that she'd noticed how he refused to speak anything utterly betraying before the others. His caution was all that was currently saving him. He wouldn't let that go not until he was certain he would be safe. Even then nothing was certain in a new world.
"How much can you tell us?"
Harry tensed. That single question had backed him into a corner. If he said he could grant them everything they desired he would earn their trust. He could buy his way out of the cell and into different accommodation far from this group. He'd have safety and more freedom than what he currently held. However in doing so he might make an enemy out of the group that had brought him here. He would be hunted until he was found.
All he could hope was the others still believed he was being tricked into speaking about them because of emotional turmoil. Severus would fight for him regardless of what he spoke of here. He would be punished if they ever got their hands on him again. It wouldn't be pretty but anything would be better than what his current future held.
Besides, his power seemed to clinch theirs in some way. Harry was certain he held more power than any of the other six. None of the others could physically use their abilities. Severus could but his mental ability to use Legillimency had always been strong. Harry's anger had always manifested this way so he could only assume their abilities directly correlated to their previous magic. He wasn't certain why that was but he was glad for it. Fighting them off wouldn't be as difficult as he'd assumed.
The only person he would have a problem with was the Dark Lord. That man wouldn't be anything short of powerful and dominating. Harry knew that while his abilities were strong, the Dark Lord would be his equal as the prophecy cursed them. When the Dark Lord finally awoke then the test would truly begin with how much power they each held within them. This world would be entirely defenceless against Voldemort and Harry couldn't have that, not if he could work for good.
"What do you want to know?"
Severus snarled in the background, blood dripping down his face, Harry ignored them all. He was well aware of what game he was playing here. Ron hadn't taught him chess for nothing. Hermione hadn't pushed as many knowledge books on him for him to forget everything. Dumbledore hadn't bestowed upon him his insights for Harry to fall apart now. He would fight for these people and against his own. He would grant them inside information that would potentially save them. He wasn't going to give in to Death Eater demands. Voldemort would die whether he was alive to see it or not.
So the chapter is short but this idea wouldn't leave me alone. It spawned life like an unwanted fungus that grows on you. However I rather enjoyed writing this so I hope you enjoy as well. More to come.