Next chapter, woop woop! Sorry for the delay; but guess what, another vacation is coming up, so I might get some writing time.
Chapter sixteen: The library
After breakfast, Voldemort escorted Harry to the library. He stood by the door while Harry took in the high ceiling room and wandered over to a couch. 'The was no way Voldemort has read all of these books!' thought Harry.
Said man spoke up, "I would appreciate it if you remained here until I return. There's some paperwork I need to attend to. When I get back I shall show you the other rooms you'll be given access to during your stay."
"About that, I've been meaning to ask... just how long do you intend for me to stay here?"
Voldemort worded his response carefully, "As long as it takes."
'As long as it takes for what?' Although he wasn't happy with the answer, Harry let the subject drop for now. He had to admit the man's hospitality was a nice change from his attempts to murder him.
With nothing more left to be said,Voldemort went out the door. When Harry heard the click of the door he went in search of anything interesting to read. That's when he spotted the title, "Legends of Lords, by Salazar Slytherin." It was on a very high shelf.
Now how was he going to get up there? Oh right, he had forgotten about that trick Nasa taught him.
Severus Snape had followed the two to the library, and ducked out of sight when the Dark Lord came back out without the boy. Was he honestly going to leave Potter unattended? As soon as Voldemort was out of sight Snape left his hiding spot and made his way over to the library's entrance.
Upon entering, he came across the alarming sight of Potter hovering by the top shelves, reading a book. He gaped at the translucent green wings that were sprouting from his back. 'What in the bloody hell?!'
The boy was startled, and with his concentration lost the wings dispersed. "Ahh!" Severus quickly rushed over and caught the teen before he could hit the ground, which consequently lead to them both being forced to the ground. The brat looked down at him sheepishly, "Oh hello professor,...How ya doin'?"
"Care to explain where you learned that odd little trick, Potter?"
He shrugged, "Oh, just from a friend."
"Does this friend have a name?"
Severus growled, "Potter..."
"Look you can growl and glare all you want but I'm not telling you."
The man opened his mouth to retort but decided to change the question, "Then perhaps you can explain why your floating around in the library of the Dark Lord?"
"I couldn't reach the top shelf."
"You could have used your wand or waved your hand" Buraki suggested from the couch.
"I wanted to practice that trick, alright!" The boy stuck his tongue out at the serpent.
Severus rolled his eyes and tossed him on the couch with the snake. "Why are you here at all?!" the potions master demanded.
The brat shrugged, "I thought I explained that at breakfast."
He growled, "No, you explained how you got to Brazil; not how you got back! Why did the Dark Lord order me to heal you?!"
Potter placed the book that was still in his hands on the armrest next to him, "Buraki brought me back. We were being attacked by someone, and we ran off. We ran into Fenrir Greyback and I guess when we got away from him, he told Voldemort where we were because they both caught up to us. Well, so did the guy who was chasing us before. He kicked Voldy's arse, by the way, and managed to land a hit on me. I passed out and when I came to I was here."
Severus took a minute to process what the boy had told him, "Who was after you that was powerful enough to physically harm the bloody Dark Lord?!"
"He's a chaos demon named Zerin, he's the guy mentioned in the Prophet this morning."
"I've yet to read it."
Potter ran a hand through his hair, " It basically said that he's a possible rival for Voldemort."
Severus absentmindedly sat next to the boy. "That explains his injury then." he said to himself. "There's one more thing I don't understand though,"
"Why are you still alive? The Dark Lord even said you were to be treated as a guest. He's been after your head for years and now he seemed, dare I say, protective."
"Maybe it's because I was and now hold his horcrux?" Potter suggested thoughtfully.
Severus gaped at him, "What?! Where did you learn about that, and what do you mean 'I was and now hold a horcrux?'"
Potter pulled out a black gem and showed it to him.
"When I was in Brazil something happened and this was removed. I knew it was a part of Voldemort, but he was the one who explained what it was when he found out I had it."
Severus reached for the gem, and pulled away sharply when it shocked him. He would have to ask Dumbledore about this. "If this is the actual horcrux then that doesn't tell me why he hasn't killed you. Is it protecting you? Reflecting curses?"
Potter seemed to recall something unpleasant, "No, definitely not... he, Voldemort, said...well, he said that he was angry that anyone else had hurt me,..if that means anything."
The statement wasn't exactly reassuring. He stood, "When I find a way to get you out of here, I will come get you."
"Dumbledore has requested that I bring you to safety."
"Wait, no don't! I have to stay here!"
Snape whirled back to face the teen, "Are you out of your mind?! Don't be foolish!"
He saw rage flash in Potter's eyes, "Will you just listen to me for once!... I don't know how to explain it, but I need to stay here. Voldemort swore on his magic not to hurt me for now. Please, I don't know what yet, but there's something I need to do here!"
The professor glared at him a moment longer before relenting, "Fine, just don't get yourself killed! The old man is devastated enough over your capture.
Harry felt a twinge of guilt at the news, "Tell Dumbledore that I'm safe; from Voldemort and from Zerin. Tell him that I'll be back in time for the new school year, I'll make sure of it."
The small boy suddenly looked so grown. Severus silently nodded and left reluctantly. When the door shut behind him he had managed about three steps before he was suddenly pinned against a wall.
Said man looked up and glared at the face of Fenrir Greyback, "What do you want wolf?!" he snarled.
The large werewolf nuzzled his neck, making Severus flinch, "You've been very naughty Sev."
"Don't call me that!"
Greyback ignored his demand and smirked into his neck, "Dear Sev, I had a feeling you were still tied to Dumbledore. I wasn't certain until today."
"Don't question my loyalties wolf! You know nothing!"
He received a fanged grin, "Oh I know exactly where your loyalty lies. You misunderstand me Severus I didn't say you were loyal to the old man. Your fond of him, respect him even, but he does not hold your loyalty." Severus remained quiet, not letting up on his glare. "No your allegiance remains with one Lilly Evans... and her son." That caused Severus to grit his teeth. He turned his head away, "So your going to expose me?"
"Not necessarily," That made the potions master realize what this confrontation was really about.
"What do you want?"
Greyback pressed closer to him and returned to nipping at his neck, "My silence, for your time."
Severus stiffened and then became resigned in the werewolf's hold; he knew exactly what the dark creature was asking for. He reluctantly nodded, before finding himself being dragged away from the wall. Greyback wore a mad grin as he swept Severus away to his quarters. The wolf laid the potions master on the fur comforter of his bed. He began peeling away heavy black robes and could have sworn he felt the emotionally-guarded man tremble. When the werewolf descended on him for a deep kiss. Severus kept telling himself that he was merely imagining the tenderness there.
Harry spent the next few hours reading the book written by an ancient parselmouth. It was written, not like a text book, but more like a collection of stories. About three at a time would revolve around a particular legend. So far he's read that the Serpent Lord was a peace keeper and was assigned such a role by Merlin himself. He's also read that the their greatest enemy was "Chaos."
"I guess that's where Zerin come into play." he said to Buraki who was reading over his shoulder.
Upon the awakening of the Serpent Lord, chaos would rise to try and stop them. It is said that the lord's purpose was to bring at least hundred years of unity; a hundred years too many for Chaos. It's ongoing mission was to slay the Serpents Lords as they appeared. Harry was unsettled when he read, 'If the Serpent Lord is slain by the hand of chaos then discord will flood the world for a thousand years...'No pressure there, Harry.'
After awhile he closed the book and turned to his companion, :If all this is true then why isn't Zerin trying to kill me. It's pretty freaking obvious that my death isn't what he has in mind.:
:I'm not entirely sure, but the advocate for chaos changes with time, just as the lords do. I'm sure that, as a chaos demon, he was raised to think you must be killed, but maybe he really is just dangerously... taken with you.:
Harry shivered at the thought, :If he was raised to kill me, then why the hell did he do what he did to me?!: He leaned into Buraki's comforting scales, tearing up at the traumatic memory.
"And what, exactly, did he do to you?"
Harry whipped his head towards the door; Voldemort had come back. Embarrassed, he quickly wiped his eyes and sat up, "Nothing, it's not important."
"Don't lie to me." He glared at the man who was approaching him. "Tell me Harry."
Harry was surprised by the man's persistence. "Why do you even care?!" the teen demanded to know.
Voldemort sat by him just as Snape had earlier. He appeared lost in thought, "...I don't know."
The sincerity in the man's voice told the teen that he had no double motive. The honesty made him want to open up, "On the night that Zerin chased us into Diagon Alley; well, before we were even near the alley we were hiding out in a forest. I was bathing under a small waterfall and he jumped me..." he trailed off, but Voldemort silently urged him to continue. "He began...touching me, forcing himself on me. I don't want to think about how far he would've gotten if Buraki wasn't there in time." He scratched said serpent's head that was nuzzling him reassuringly. "I don't think I've ever felt so violated in my life," he added with a slightly hysterical laugh.
The teen yelped as he was suddenly pulled into Voldemort's lap. He struggled for a moment and could hear Buraki hiss a warning at the man. He felt strong arms wrap around him, holding him in place. He looked up and saw pure fury on the dark lord's face. It took him a moment to realize the anger was not directed towards him. In fact, Harry didn't think the man realized he had grabbed him or was that he currently holding the boy in a tight embrace.
:I'll kill him! How dare he touch whats mine!: He didn't think Voldemort realized he was speaking aloud either. He blushed at what the statement implied. Buraki was still incoherently hissing at the man's sudden alteration in behavior, but went completely ignored. Harry gave him a look that told the anaconda to settle down.
While Voldemort was continuously hissing about a variety of methods that could be used to mutilate Zerin, Harry assessed his current position. He and Voldemort had both fallen back along the length of the couch, leaning against the side of the large anaconda and the armrest. He was settled between the man's legs and pressed into the robe-clad chest, which was surprisingly very warm. He felt his eye-lids become heavy from the warmth the radiated off that chest. He could not help falling asleep.
After about ten minutes of devising ways to properly torture a certain demon, Voldemort heard the serpent he was leaning against finally snap, :Will you shut up already!:
That made him cease his tirade. He was about to snarl at Buraki before he finally noticed a weight on his chest. He looked down to see Harry Potter in his arms.
Nagini seemed to have chosen that moment to enter the library; when she spotted them she tilted her head, :Are you two mated now?:
Voldemort twitched. "No Nagini, we are not mates."
She huffed, "Hurry up and mate already, I want grand hatch-lings before I get old." Voldemort raised a nonexistent eyebrow at her.
Nagini came over to the couch and climbed up, settling around the two wizards and slightly on top of Buraki, much to the younger snake's annoyance. Her scales had brushed over Harry a bit, making him unconsciously shift further into Voldemort. His face was now rested in the crook of the man's neck. Voldemort found that he felt no desire to push the teen away. He couldn't believe his lack of control over his emotions that occurred just a few moments ago. He had felt so enraged by the idea of the demon forcefully laying his hands on the boy; it was not just because he found the act revolting, but that he had tried it with Harry.
He heard Buraki reply as if he knew what was on his mind, "You two still have a connection, don't you?"
"...Yes, I continue to feel something connecting me to the boy; it's there, in the back of my mind. It's abnormally soothing now." he admitted. "I don't understand, the horcrux isn't within him anymore."
This time it was Nagini who spoke, :It's because he's a potential mate!: She said this as if she were stating the obvious.
"No way!" Buraki didn't like that idea at all; he didn't trust the dark lord to be a good partner for Harry. Then again he had only just met the wizard, so as the Serpent lord's guardian familiar, he felt that it was his responsibility to judge the worthiness of this "potential mate."
:God damn it, my name is Buraki!:
:Well now it's Double-tongue!:
Nagini turned her attention back on Voldemort, :Tom, speakers tend to inherit some of our instincts. Usually they receive our mating instincts as well. When a potential mate is discovered, especially if they're another speaker, the two tend to gravitate towards each other mentally and physically.:
Voldemort looked down at Harry, hair had fallen over most of the teen's face. He brushed it back and gazed at the boy who looked so peaceful. He felt no animosity for Harry at the moment. 'A mate... could it be possible, even for one such as I.' Childhood doubts flooded his mind. He recalled memories of a rejected orphan boy, plagued by the mysteries of why he was left so alone. Voldemort leaned down closer and, before he realized it, his lips pressed to the boys temple.
Harry's eye-lids fluttered for a moment, then revealed sparkling emeralds. It took him a moment to realize exactly what and who he was sleeping against. When he jerked up he heard Voldemort groan and realized his palm was pressed into the still healing wound that Zerin had given the man. "Sorry Tom!" he sad quickly, pulling away.
Harry looked up and saw the dark lord staring at him in surprise. That was when he realized what he had just called him, "Sorry..."
"...You may call me that."
Voldemort mentally slapped himself, why the hell did he say that?!
'Sigh, too late now.' He stood up and repeated, "You may call me that, if you wish."
"I thought you hated that name."
"I prefer when you say it." (Mental bitch slap) Shut up!
Buraki could have gagged at the scene, 'Why did it have to be him?! Harry deserves better, and I don't like him! What about that Johnathan guy from The Hideaway? He was nice! This guy, he'd probably be a very boring companion; I bet he doesn't even dance!'
Harry gathered the currently Nagini sized Buraki around his shoulders, and followed Tom when he told him he would show him around.
There it is, please review!
Remember this story is going to go through a re-vamp when it's finished, so if there's anything that doesn't really make sense just let me know. This chapter seemed a little iffy to me, anyway.
Next:...rest of the summer at the manor, fun fun fun.