Order of the demigods CH14
Oh my gosh I haven't updated in two years! We're ignoring most of the second series I believe. I'm so sorry for not updating, I'm going to try and make this chapter worth it but I've really lost track of where this story was going…
"How old are you?"
Remus leaned back from Nico slightly with an incredulous look on his face.
"Sirius, where did you get this veritaserum?" Sirius grimaced in response.
"Severus made it last week. Something about keeping stocks up just in case."
'How old are you?' Remus asked again. Nico repeated his earlier answer. At this point, Corvus turned up and started cackling eerily. "When were you born?"
"1924." Sirius growled at him and his face contorted into a snarl.
"Liar! Just make this easier for yourself and stop resisting the serum!" Nico looked towards the doorway of the room and winced. Hermione, Harry, Ron and the twins' eager faces looked back at him. He rolled his eyes and nodded his head at Corvus, who promptly flew out the window. About a minute later the door opened and the young eavesdroppers shuffled guiltily into the room, herded by the crow's flailing wings.
"Nico, there's no way we'll believe what you said! You barely look older than ten!" Hermione's face froze after Ron had finished speaking.
"Woah, Ron, don't think that was the best way to put it…" George hesitantly added. He was right. The atmosphere in the room was rapidly darkening. Remus felt it first – similar to the effect of a Dementor, all the happiness and light seemed to be being sucked out of the room. Sirius paled but still leaned forward over Nico.
"This little trick isn't going to fool us, boy, so why don't you just tell the truth." This was the last straw. Shadows whipped out from the room's corners, flailing and smashing dishes left right and centre. Molly opened the door to the room, took one look at the state of it then quickly shut the door and vanished.
Nico was starting to panic. The veritaserum wasn't only causing the truth to surface – it seemed to be affecting his powers, which he'd been trying very hard to keep under wraps until now. A throbbing pain made itself known in his head and Corvus' constant cawing didn't seem to be helping. He could barely concentrate on the question that had been asked in the first place and it took a monumental amount of effort for him to stop the shadows pulling him back to the underworld. A common misconception amongst mortals was that the demigods were directly in control of their power. In reality, demigods had all of the powers of their parent god but the mortal half of their body was unable to be a good conduit for these powers and so only a small amount of power was able to be used. However, the more powerful the parent god, the more power the demigod would have. Most demigods could wield the full amount of power their physical bodies could stand without any side effects and even other children of the big three had little difficulty doing this. But due to the nature of Nico's powers, it was hard for him to control large amounts of power without physical pain at the least.
Even worse was when he couldn't control them. His powers' only concern was for his own life, so multiple times when sparring he had had to deliberately lose in order to prevent serious harm to his opponents. He'd never had to rein in his abilities this much and it was never pleasant when he did – instead of going outwards from him, the power would be turned back on himself and it was excruciating.
He writhed in the chair and started panting. Nico stumbled to his feet which seemed to alarm everyone in the room. Couldn't they see? He needed to get somewhere far away from others, somewhere he could safely 'explode' his powers without anyone getting hurt. He prepared to shadow-travel, but just as he was about to embrace the soothing darkness someone grabbed his arm. It was Hermione.
"You're not getting away with that trick again, Nico." The demigod groaned. This was not the time! Just as he tried to shake off the girl's arm one of his knees buckled and he fell to the ground.
Remus started "Nico. Stop the shadows, we won't ask any more questions, just make the room normal again."
He let out a harsh laugh. He would stop it if he could. It wasn't just shadows affecting the room anymore. As he looked around he noticed even the most innocent looking items and utensils seemed to have been warped to resemble cruel, mocking faces. A look of desperation crawled onto his face and he turned in search of a way out. His eyes settled on Hermione, and he made tentative eye contact, trying to convey what he wanted her to do. Thankfully, she was smart and seemed to realise that he wasn't doing this on purpose.
"Everybody out of this room now." She received mixed responses. "Do you really think he's going to go anywhere? He can't even stand up!" At this there was slight grumbling from the demigod himself but ultimately it seemed to work as Harry, Ron and the twins left. "You too, Professor Moody." Nico shuddered – he was so distracted, he hadn't even noticed his previous opponent's return. The older man didn't budge, although Remus did grab Sirius and move for the door. Now, only Moody, Hermione and Arthur remained in the room. The former had a stubborn look on his gnarled face.
"I'm not going to leave someone this powerful to his own devices. He could kill any of us – heck, he could probably kill all of us." Nico panted as he realised the truth of the man's statement. He wasn't looking too good – even paler than usual and strangely gaunt. Turning his powers inwards, especially as his powers were death, wasn't his idea of a good time.
"Look at him! He's obviously trying not to kill us, look at the state he's in!" Hermione was nearing hysterical. It probably didn't help that Nico's powers weren't normal in the Wizarding world. A shadow tendril swept around the floor and wrapped itself around Nico. The floor started trembling and all of Mrs Weasley's bone china exploded.
"Hermione, I think maybe you should…" Arthur looked incredibly out of his depth in this situation but meant well. However, Hermione was the only one who had some idea of what Nico's powers were doing to him.
"No! It's not his fault, look at the shadows, and look at his skin!" Nico had no idea what she meant but glanced down at his left hand. It was grey, the veins standing out pitch black against the small appendage. The blackness of his veins was slowly inching its way up through his body from the thick layer of shadow touching his feet. Nico could feel the suffocating darkness running through his blood; no, it was his blood, his own blood was becoming shadows. He felt immensely powerful in this state but also like a dam about to burst. "It's hurting him too!"
"I…need to go," He grunted in pain and held back a whimper "Somewhere empty." Neither Mr Weasley nor Moody seemed to understand but thankfully, once again, Hermione did.
"Mr Weasley. Can you quickly apparate Nico somewhere where there are no bystanders?"
"I'm sorry, what? He's a member of the Order and he knows where our headquarters are – what if he just vanishes?"
"He's not going to! He can't control his powers right now, can't you see?" Moody shook his head and Arthur looked conflicted. Nico was barely holding on; if he let his powers take over right now everyone in the house would be dead or comatose. He couldn't afford to wait for something as trivial as permission; he needed to get out of there right now! Moody's face suddenly paled – a shadow had wrapped itself around his neck and didn't seem to be letting up. Nico tried to absorb more and more of his power into himself but it wasn't working, he was at his limit and –
There was no way all of this was caused by a measly little potion. Yes, the veritaserum probably didn't help but power explosions on this scale were very rare and generally caused by some other instance. He couldn't hold on any longer so he prayed to all the gods he knew of that he wouldn't hurt anyone, he wouldn't kill-
A sharp 'crack' sounded and suddenly the entire room and everyone in it disappeared. The demigod had no idea what had happened but as he glanced around, he was relieved to find he was in a large forest with no sign of civilisation. The grass turned black around his feet and started smouldering. Nico lost it.
A huge shockwave flew out from the barely conscious teen, knocking down trees in about a 50m radius around him. Waves and waves of hellfire flew out and seemed to burn the air itself. Countless corpses crawled their way out of the ground and seized the demigod. It had never been this bad, Nico realised, and now he was afraid of his own powers. The corpses crumbled and burned away from the hellfire but more and more took their place, lifting the demigod off his feet. A sudden, cold and intense fear came over Nico before his eyes rolled back into his skull and he lost consciousness.
This seemed to be the last part of resistance vanishing because Nico's body suddenly rose of its own accord about sixty meters into the air. Black lightning struck through him to the ground over and over again, charring everything around him. The Ghost King was tossed around by the ocean of power that it looked like a gruesome puppet dancing across the sky. Hordes of ghosts appeared on the ground and cried at him – death itself radiated from him and wilted trees which fell and were then consumed by the raging hellfire. Shadows whipped around him, taking out any remnants of tree which were still standing. The blackness sung through his veins at the destruction caused and his hair, which had been getting shaggier and longer, formed a dark halo around his head.
All the power of Hades currently resided in the fourteen year-old. His eyes turned pitch black and then an eerie gold, but not in consciousness. The storm raged on and on, shadows crawling into Nico's mouth, eyes, nose and ears like evil smoke. There was nothing left to destroy so Nico's powers; no, Death's powers, destroyed Nico and rebuilt him over and over again, taking him apart and burning him and putting him back together and burning him and killing him and reviving him and burning him until there was no more power left.
Nico didn't know how long it had been – he'd been aware of what had happened but he wasn't quite conscious in a strange awake dream which was like watching himself on TV, except whilst he was dying and on fire. It hurt, oh hades did it hurt. But eventually, when there was no more hurt left to happen, his body floated slowly down to the ground where it sat, surrounded by ashes and a few smouldering stumps of tree. He lay there for a while in the strange dream paralysis before he heard voices.
"…said he Apparated him into this forest."
"…on earth will we find him? …isn't even a forest here…"
A voice he recognised – but who was it? Not Percy and certainly not Bianca, not the voices of anyone at camp…
"…you mean there isn't any forest left. The kid was right – he did need to go somewhere empty"
"You mean he did all of this? The ashes and bones and blood?"
"Is that him?"
"Oh god it is him! Nico!"
He was vaguely aware of being called, but couldn't think of a response because suddenly everything hurt again and he was burning and living and crumbling and dying all at once and-
"His eyes! What-"
He suddenly sat up and looked at his hand. It was normal flesh colour (well, normal coloured for him) but his veins were still black and he felt an immense amount of power at his fingertips – not uncontrollable like it was before, just there.
"Blimey, is he awake?" Was he? What was the state he was in? He could see what was around him but – by god, he could see everything, the life forces of the entire earth, everyone dying at the moment and everyone living in it and he could see everything.
"I don't think so. Or I don't think it's Nico that's awake right now."
Ooh, cliffie. Hope this chapter was worth it.