The Heart of Magic

An eon of emptiness was spread out before him, freedom, destiny and more were all his to control in this plane. A blue landscape may seem plain but with each step Harry felt enriched and more powerful, this was the heart of magic and the landscape was his mind trying to rationalise the truth behind it. He had been journeying into this realm for the last two years and he was nowhere near discovering its mysteries, two years since he had left Britain and two years since he had joined the Order of Mages. The order was the magical equivalent to the papacy in a way, it was made up of the most powerful wizards to walk the earth, all countries but Great Britain accepted their authority and they acted as a higher authority than wizarding ministries and worked to combat corruption and intolerance. Unsurprisingly Britain was the only country that did not accept their authority and that was why Harry had never heard of them until he had left Britain, he had enough of the prophecy, the war and everything else and left. He could not handle any more losses and the continues battles had faced; so he left and the first plane he found had led to Rome, he had found the order and quickly became enthralled by it. He could now understand Hermione's desire for knowledge as at the heart of the order was a huge blue stone which would glow at all hours, this was the heart of all magic and the order was designed to protect it and uphold magic. A job they had done for thousands of years, Harry was famous even here and was invited to stay with the order, at first he was reluctant but he joined a few days later. He had moved quickly and he was already one of the hundred Cardinal Mages who were below only the arch-mage himself who acted almost as the pope of magic, his word was law and he was voted in. Harry apparently was hot tipped to be the next arch-mage but for now he was comfortable studying magic, he was powerful without a doubt but he had learned to control this power over time and slowly he had become accustomed to this way of life.

"Cardinal Mage Potter," a voice so soft and yet so loud filled his ears and reluctantly Harry pulled back, he left the very heart of magic and was once again in the main chamber; in his body. A stone room was the heart's container but these stones were not normal, they were enchanted by Merlin himself to reflect magic back into the heart and without it then the excess power could destroy the very fabric of magic. The stone was paved and carved with various runes which when one paid close attention was inscribed with the names of every arch-mage for the last five thousand years; when they died they would be cast into the heart and become one with magic. Their name would be added to the never ending room and a successor would be chosen

"Yes," Harry answered suddenly rising to his feet, he was draped in red robes with golden thread cutting across his arms and chest, a hat of the same colour was perched on his head; it took the shape of a red oval and rested on his head comfortably. This was the gear of a cardinal mage and Harry had been one for two months; before he was a high mage, before that he was just a mage and at the start of his career he had been an initiate. He had come a long way in two years and was the first person to be accepted into the order for twenty years, the members had very long lives thanks to the heart's influence.

"The Arch-mage requires the Cardinal Mages immediately," a servant asked; Alicia he thought her name was. She was one of the many workers allowed access to the building but unlike him she could not use the heart, it would kill her in an instant. It had taken Harry two years to even take a step and the untrained eye would be destroyed by the heart.

"Of course, thank you," Harry smiled at her before with a swish of his robes he left the room, Alicia locked the door behind him and he walked down the marble corridors of the sacrarium; the order's headquarters. White marble and black engravings were used to show the connection between light and dark magic while the red curtains was used with the sun to show how all could touch both magic types. They were tools but it was how you used which mattered, using dark magic did not make a person evil and vice versa was the message the order was giving. Harry walked through a large oak door to a room, it was set up almost like the houses of parliament; two benches sat people and one man sat in the centre; the difference was all the people were dressed in red and no one was sat in the middle. Harry took his seat on the left side of the room and was greeted quickly by one of the other cardinals; there was fifty of them in total. They were advisors and agents of the Arc-mage

"All rise," someone requested, the entire room stood to attention as a man walked in.

When Harry had first met the Arch-mage he had reminded him of Dumbledore, he was old and had a long white beard which fell from his face like a river. He was dressed in white with black tendrils wrapping around him like a spider; again to show the relationship between light and dark; his hair was pure white and his face kindly.

"Please my friends do sit down," the man requested taking his seat, it was white gold and like a throne in many aspects; however it was not to show superiority but instead to show he was the chairman of the room. A clear leader who did not feel above anyone but today the man adopted a more serious tone,

"Yesterday a man was caught trying to break into the sacrarium, a man who we believe is part of an organization that this order has been strongly against from the start. A group of hate and tyranny that is known as the death eaters, until now we have been left out of the conflict because the affairs of Great Britain are not ours since they broke away from us many years ago. However this man is to face judgment for his crimes, we believe he was on a mission to assassinate one of our own, a cardinal whose name will not be divulged as of yet," the arch-mage announced. Harry's blood went cold; the only cardinal in this room who could be the target was... him; no they couldn't have found him could they? He had left that life behind for a reason and that reason was clear. He was not going back to it now or ever; then his thoughts shattered as Lucius Malfoy was dragged in by two heavily armoured battlemages; the arch-mage's bodyguard and personal army. His eye met Harry's and something flickered across his face; surprise? Maybe not

"Get your filthy hands off me," He suddenly barked to the battlemages; the obviously thought he could sweet talk his way out of this situation but Harry was already on his feet.

"Arch-mage I request immediate excommunication," Harry announced loudly; this was common. Whenever judgement needed to be passed then the cardinals would suggest punishments and vote if needed.

"That's a bit extreme Cardinal Mage Potter is it not?" someone asked from the other side of the room, a few people were surprised by his outburst but Harry knew this man. He knew what he could do and wanted to do and if he was allowed free then he would try again

"It depends Cardinal mage Osbora, the death eaters have proved a threat time and time again. Perhaps an excommunication will teach them the error of their ways," another cardinal suggested rising in defence of Harry.

"May I say something to you gentleman?" Lucius suddenly asked, the battlemages were standing by him and if he tried anything or made a move towards the Arch-mage then he wouldn't make it a foot before he was killed. He stood like a businessman and addressed them

"My actions towards you were completely out of context, the dark lord always has and always will have the utmost respect for you but the idea of a mudblood," he began. The room suddenly exploded in anger as the most disgusting word that could be said within these halls was uttered so casually, Lucius Malfoy did not know in the real world racism was intolerable nor did he know what sentence he was facing. Excommunication meant his magic would be stripped from him and he would be left a squib, it was the highest penalty the order could invoke and Harry had seen it used five times.

"Enough!" The Arch-mage called for order, then he turned on Lucius Malfoy "Listen to me now! Vile language of that sort will not be tolerated within these halls. The dark lord is not held in high regard here and he will never be, please do not address the Cardinal Mages in such a way."

"Arch-mage I second the sentence of Excommunication," the female Cardinal Mage announced suddenly.

"I third," another man agreed rising to his feet. The Arc-mage nodded,

"Would the Cardinal Mages please vote," he requested firmly but not unkindly, Harry voted in favour and found that Lucius's comment must have unsettled a lot of people as over thirty people voted with him. The Arch-Mage nodded and looked down and Lucius who looked confused;

"Lucius Malfoy, we find you guilty of all crimes and we impose the maximum penalty available to us, you are hereby banished from the world of magic and with the powers of this order I excommunicate you from magic," he spoke like a grandfather who had caught his grandson doing something wrong but Lucius could not make up for this crime, no because as he spoke those words the Arch-mage raised his hand and a blue light flowed from Lucius like a river, it tore from his pores and orifices, then it stopped.

"No," Lucius mumbled half to himself as he sensed something had happened, it took him a few moments to realise that his connection with magic was gone...

"NO!" he screamed lunging for the Arch-mage, he was restrained with ease but not killed, he was being made to suffer this for the rest of his days and as he screamed and cried nothing was done. He howled like an animal and tears poured from his usual calm grey eyes, his body was convulsing in fury and fear but nothing more could be done. There was no way to reverse the process and even if he could the Arch-mage would not have done it, he had made his bed now he had to lie in it.

"This meeting is adjourned," the Arc-mage announced gravely, when one lost their connection to magic it was not a time of celebration but of mourning, despite everything as he filed out of the room Harry was worried. He had fled from his destiny for two years and while he often thought of the life he had left behind he never wanted to return to it, never wanted to face it again but now it seemed he did not have to look for his old life; it was looking for him and sooner or later it would catch up with him. His scar which had not pained him for many years was almost itching, he had cut off the connection long ago but something was stirring, something he had not felt in a long time, something he did not want to feel again, something that had died when Sirius fell through the veil. Something that would not return, not now or ever.