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Drabble Vomit Thread;

Discussion in 'FanFic Discussion' started by Jormungandr, Jun 22, 2012.

  1. trollolol

    trollolol Third Year

    Joined:
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    Thanks :) Yeah, I know its light on a lot of things - like I said this is my first ever attempt at writing. Its not really supposed to be a standalone fic or anything, just a small piece of dialogue. Baby steps I guess. Didn't want to write a load of background and context and then have everyone be like "M8, that is not how you write" :eek:
     
  2. Zenzao

    Zenzao 500 Club King Prestige

    Joined:
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    Recent refinement of an world-trotting Auror Potter. Kind of an international 'for loan' specialist, if you will. Have trouble, point and shoot.
    All he'd asked for, six nights gone, was that any vital communication be handled by his aide at the office. Hannah Abbot was a studious woman and quick with a wand, as suited old Flitwick's top student, with the skills to perform up to those Outstanding O.W.L.S. He had made sure of that.

    So why, then, was Robbards bombarding his dragon fang earring with information? Did the senior Auror miss his explicit instructions? That any outside contact, unless and only if he sent it first, would compromise his mission and likely get him killed?

    Auror Potter ripped the squalling enchantment from his left lobe and flung it to the ground, his boot stomping down without mercy before he was executing a silent, rolling Protego as far to the side of his former guide as possible. "Spy! Liar!" The words emerged in native Namibian and were spat out in rough English by the Babeltone Charm woven into his ears well before arrival in the sandy kingdom. The walking stick said guide carried flashed with awakening runes as the guide chanted, unfortunately impossible to decipher as anything other than gibberish, but the scent of ozone and the white sheen bubbling up to the surface were warning enough.

    "We're going to have words about this when I get back to base, Robbards," he swore in a rush as his wand wove a rapid transfiguration from the remnants of his earring. Enlarged, glittering silver leapt up to intercept the path of the bolt and redirected the deadly energy enough to disperse into a blinding flash across his shield charm.

    He ducked his head into his chest and spat out the banisher to send the electrified steel shooting like arrowheads at his former friend and, in the next beat, was on the move again, retreating in a rough arc, deaf and blind for the moment.

    A wave of heat warned him he'd missed. Then fire was melting the ground around his feet into a gooey paste. Harry slashed twelve inches of yew and Norwegian Ridgeback heart string down and up, now banishing himself into the sky. Hardtack greeted him in a jarring collision with the ground before he could realize he was crumpling. Dammit, the Protego's gone. He managed to tuck his wrist in against his stomach, cradling his replacement wand from harm.

    He was beginning to get his sight back before his hearing and scrambled upright, throwing himself aside of the moltening curse before it could engulf his unprotected body.


    Not a total loss, then, he caught a glimpse of blood flowing down the Namibian's upper body and what was left of the hand clutching at the cracked staff. The runes were still aglow like dying stars, flickering weakly. But the evening around them had dramatically darkened into thick dusk.

    "Wards." And that was why he had wanted complete radio silence. This wasn't a game; the sheikhs ahead of him, once he got past this man, knew what they were doing in the Dark Arts. No time to focus on that, however. Auror Potter docked 'Norberta', named after Hagrid's old pet, and uncorked a pint-sized bottle from the inside of his vest. He flung it low on purpose and hoofed it rapidly away, backtracking even further, dodging the hail of light that bombarded his path.

    The man behind him tried to intercept the potion. "That was a mistake." He slowed and waited as the bubbling black acid boiled over, expanding like the ocean tide sweeping over a drowning man. Anguished condemnation flowed off of the sluicing lips and tongue of the dying Namibian.

    "Bloody hell." He exhaled, looked to the hourglass and stars compass in his breast pocket. "As expected it's going to be song and solvent from here to the end of this night."

    Not much and not likely to go any further in this iteration as I have better plans for him, but I still like it.
     
  3. TheWiseTomato

    TheWiseTomato Tactical Tomato DLP Supporter

    Joined:
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    Rough stuff, typed up in some sort of notepad because I'm away from my own computer. Might one day be continued.

    X


    Rubeus Hagrid, Keeper of the Keys for Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, leant on his matic and admired a job well done. His garden was neatly furrowed and ready for seeding, a misshapen scarecrow already standing guard. He shaded his eyes as he took in the setting sun. Planting the seeds was a job for the morrow. Now, after a good day of hard work, it was time for the pub.

    The half giant placed his matic with the rest of his tools and scrubbed his hands of dirt in a barrel of water he kept next to his back door, before dunking his face in it. He grabbed a towel hanging from a nearby hook and dried off, unbothered by the cold. Stepping inside his cottage, he retrieved his coat - the one he had purchased, not the other, special one he had fashioned himself - ran a coarse brush through his hair, and made for the door.

    "Fang. Stay," Hagrid said to his dog. Although still a pup, he had him well trained, and the animal set his blocky head down on his overlarge paws.

    He eyed his crossbow for a moment before he locked his door. They were dangerous times, to be sure...but he was only going down the road to the Hog's Head. He left the enchanted crossbow where it was and set off.

    X

    "Hagrid," the old man behind the bar greeted.

    "'Ello, Aberforth," Hagrid said.

    "Usual?"

    "If yeh don't mind."

    Aberforth summoned one of his larger mugs, filling it with Hagrid's brew of choice with a flick of his wand and handing it over. Hagrid took it, his hands dwarfing it, and knocked back a gulp that emptied half the mug. Aberforth flicked his wand again, refilling it, and Hagrid nodded his thanks. He settled in to nurse it, drawing a girl further along the bar, who he recognised as a recent graduate, into a conversation about how his current crop of cabbages were getting along.

    Numerous drinks and several hours later, Hagrid was talking to a dragon handler who was happy to have someone to rave about his dragons to. When the man staggered off to the bathroom, having unwisely tried to match Hagrid drink for drink, Aberforth sidled over, polishing a dirty glass.

    "Would you mind doing me a favour, Hagrid?"

    "Sure, Abe," Hagrid said. He wiped some foam from his beard with the back of his hand. "What'd yeh need?"

    Aberforth nodded towards a trio of young men who had ensconsced themselvesin a booth. "Those lads threw an aversion charm up a few minutes ago, and I don't like what I heard before they did. Think you could listen in for me?"

    Hagrid threw a glance at the patrons mentioned, and his dark eyes narrowed. They were exactly the sort who would sneer and lock down their noses at him if they crossed paths in Diagon Alley. He bent an ear their way, and immediately felt the grating of the charm, trying to convince him to move his attention elsewhere. His giant blood shrugged it off, and he caught a few snatches of conversation.

    "-the Dark Lord-"
    "-if we take his Mark-"
    "-the Prewett brothers-"

    Hagrid set his mug down with a growl, rising to his feet. He stomped over to the booth the young men sat in, looming over them. THey looked up and jumped as he slammed one meaty fist down on their table. Drinks leapt into the air and spilt their contents everywhere as their owners found themselves face to face with ten feet of angry half giant.

    "Leave. You're not wlecome 'ere."

    Two of them were startled, the third lifted his chin arrogantly. "Who are you to tell us-"

    "If yeh want to talk about joining the Dark Lord, do it somewhere not here," Hagrid told them, loud enough for the whole pub to hear. He clenched his fists, knuckles cracking. He didn't recognise any of them.

    The three young men saw the rest of the pub sending hostile looks, and exchanged a glance. They rose and attempted to sidle out of the booth. Hagrid stared down at them, refusing to move. They were forced to squeeze out past his bulk, and then hurried from the pub without a backwards glance.

    Hagrid returned to his seat; a few regulars raised their glasses to him as he passed. Aberforth placed a fresh glass before him. It was warm to the touch - firewhisky, and the good stuff.

    "On the house," Aberforth said.

    "Thanks," Hagrid muttered. He busied himself with his drink, feeling embarrassed now that his ire was cooling. Still, a warm feeling rose in his chest, and it wasn't from the firewhisky.

    It was a good brew, though.

    X

    Hagrid ambled carefully out of the pub, wobbling slightly. The August air was a mite cool, but he was warmed by the firewhisky in his belly. He drew his coat around his shoulders and set off for the looming shelter of Hogwarts.

    The hour was late, and the streets of Hogsmeade were deserted. It was a time that Hagrid secretly enjoyed; being able to walk through town in solitude and without anyh of the reactions that people were prone to upon seeing him. Sometimes, when the sky was clear and the moon was full, he would on his coat and walk the Forest, or take a boat out onto the Lake to say hello to the Giant Squid. The grounds and the sky had a way of making a man feel small.

    The half giant caught a flicker of movement out of the corner of his eye, a street over, and he frowned. It was downright queer for good witches and wizards to be out at this hour in bad times like these. He kept strolling along, guard not quite raised. It was like as not some other drunk sod stumbling home from the Three Broomsticks.

    A moment later, he glimpsed another figure - this time to the other side. The hairs on the back of his neck stood on end. He was being followed.

    A third figure stepped out onto the road ahead of him, iluminated by the moonlight. It was the wizard that had tried talking down to him at the Hog's Head, the Death Eater runt. A low rumble started deep in his throat, and he stopped in his tracks, next to a cast iron bench. He slipped his hands from his coat pockets and waited for them to come to him.

    They sauntered closer, overconfidence born of ale and assumed superiority easing their instinctive caution. Hagrid waited, black eyes fixed on the leader of the trio as they surrounded him in a rough triangle. They stopped a few metres out of his reach, wands out, and there was a long pause.

    The leader spoke in a mocking drawl. "I'd offer to let you draw your wand, but-"

    Hagrid grabbed the nearby cast iron bench and hurled it at him with a roar. Even as it flew he was already turning to the right for another of his assailants, one hand clenched into a meaty fist the size of a Christmas ham. The dark wizard squawked and backpedalled, trying to gain space at the sight of ten foot of enraged half giant bearing down on him; panic had driven even the meanest of spells from his mind. Hagrid drove his fist into the man's torso and he crumpled without a word.

    A heavy blow smote his side, and Hagrid found the bench he had thrown returned to him with interest; the Death Eater runt sneered over at him. A brown spell from the other wizard followed, slicing through the left sleeve of his coat and carving a line of pain down his arm. A haze fell over his vision and his reason, and he grasped the mangled bench like a club. His enraged gaze fell on the wizard who had wounded him, and he charged like an Abraxan over a cliff.

    Curses and jinxes flew at him only to be brushed aside like annoying insects, his giant blood roused. A blast of force rocked him but he pushed through, drawing his club back to reduce the wizard before him to paste.

    A spell his the club and it explosed into a flock of mangled metal birds. They dropped to the ground, taking Hagrid's weapon from him, but he was undeterred. He reached out, grasping the backpedalling wizard by his wand arm, and squeezed. Bones shattered and muscles popped, and a scream tore from the dark wizard's throat.

    Pain blossomed in Hagrid's shoulder, and he turned to snarl at the leader of the sorry three, the Death Eater runt. He hurled the screaming wizard at him, nearly tearing the man's arm out of his socket in the process. They collided heavily and landed messily on the cold dirt; pained groans came from the wizard with the crushed arm.

    The half giant strode forward, the combination of pain, alcohol and his roused heritage stripping him of his normal distaste towards violance. He meant to beat these men to their knees and further still, and he would sleep like a dragonlet after the teat afterwards.

    A sharp crack echoed through the night, and Hagrid scowled as the two prone wizards disappeared. Another crack came a few seconds later, this time from behind, and he turned to see the runt crouched over the wizard he had laid out first. The wizard met his eyes hatefully, and he started towards them, intent on finishing what he had started; there was a whirl of robes, a third and final crack, and they were gone.

    Hagrid stood still for a long moment, great clouds of breath fogging the air as his chest rose and fell. THe night was calm once more; his rage was fading. The gash on his arm began to throb suddenly, in sync with his heartbeat, and the bloodstain on his coat sleeve was spreading slowly.

    The groundskeeper gave a great sigh and turned for the castle and his cottage once more. The curtains of a nearby housetwitched as he passed, but he paid them no mind. His bed, and a dram of whisky, were calling him.
     
  4. CheddarTrek

    CheddarTrek Set Phasers to Melt Moderator DLP Supporter

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    No idea WTF this is. I just started writing b/c I was stuck at a computer without internet for an hour, and forgot to bring legitimate work with me.

    [FONT=&quot]The wizarding world I once loved died decades ago, choked by hate and apathy both. I’ve been all over the world, as a muggle, a wizard, and now a werewolf. But nowhere is as unforgiving as magical Britain.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]I wander the world without a place to call home. My name is Remus Lupin, and my wife is Tonks. Just Tonks, not Nymphadora. We’re explorers, scavengers in a sense, looking for bits of magic overlooked throughout the ages that might fetch a decent price or even permanent funding.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]This is the first time I’ve been back to Britain since the Scourge. There’s very little left of the world that entranced me as a youth. Diagon Alley is under Voldemort’s thumb, and what few fortunate souls pledged loyalty to him before the Taboo lifted scuttle through the alleys with red skulls of surrender tattooed on their cheeks. I steered clear until now, though it’s been decades since anyone knew or cared who Remus Lupin was. No good comes of dealing with the past, but for once I have a reason to visit.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]It all started with a myth… a legend of a cloak that could hide the wearer from Death itself. Capital D. Centuries ago a children’s author wrote about the dramatically named ‘Deathly Hallows,’ but any truth to the story disappeared long before my time. Many have searched for such treasures regardless, driven by desperate desire to see loved ones again, to rule the world, or simply to disappear.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]All roads pointed to Britain as the resting place of these unlikely items, but the few treasure hunters who returned alive from forays into the desolate land came back empty-handed. Even the Goblins refused such expeditions now, turning down payments of gold coin. But they’d pass on rumors, and one of those rumors had contained an old Auror code from before the Scourge. Merlin knows no one alive but Tonks would have recognized it.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]We’re nearing Knockturn now, one of the only places left the Goblins didn’t warn me about. Ironic that the worst part of town to visit when I was a boy is the safest in my dotage, but the shifty denizens of that dark alley adapted where others couldn’t. Elements offensive to the new regime operated in shadow, just as in the past, regardless of political climate.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]But the atmosphere isn’t right, doesn’t match what I’ve been told to expect. The wary greetings and acceptance of foreign travelers is absent, and eyes follow us with each step.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Tonks snakes her hand through the crook of my arm, chattering on while pretending to be my excitable granddaughter, eager to peddle our wares in the hellscape that is London. Her nimble fingers trace out a code on my wrist – we can outrun them, she reminds me. Ninety years old and Tonks remains a specialist in escape and evasion. Her transfigured broom masquerades as my walking stick. I don’t remind her that I wouldn’t make it out with her, not from the heart of Voldemort’s domain.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]But if we could find the cloak! Perhaps one Hallow would lead us to the others. That discovery would let us travel unheeded, perhaps help someone to topple the immortal Voldemort’s regime. Unless it was all a trap, unless after decades of disinterest he chose to draw out the final vestiges of the Order, unless he himself possessed the Hallows.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Unless. Harry. [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]A low growl escaped my throat before I choked it back. We’d never found the body, and Merlin knew Voldemort would have paraded it about as his personal inferi given half a chance.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]What if Harry’s cloak had been the same one James had owned? What if it had truly lasted twenty years from one schoolboy to the next without fading? What if it still worked, a century after I first laid eyes on it? Such things weren’t possible.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]Unless they were. [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]I grinned and strode forward, pecking my wife on the cheek. I’m too old worry about tomorrow, not when today holds new potential. Time to dance.[/FONT]
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2016
  5. Andrela

    Andrela Plot Bunny DLP Supporter

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    I am full of yes right now.
     
  6. Steelbadger

    Steelbadger High Inquisitor

    Joined:
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    United Kingdom
    I've never really worked out what I should do with all the little ideas that never really go anywhere. Maybe I should have one of those drabble vomit dumping ground fics on FF.Net. Here's some of what's currently clogging my fanfiction folder:

    After reading the the words 'Jedi Council' and 'manipulative old men' in conjunction on too many times I started toying with the idea of having Dumbledore turn up in the Star Wars universe, mainly because I thought throwing Dumbledore and Yoda together could be amusing. I didn't get all that far:

    “We have been watching for near enough four days now Master, surely it is clear that Vos will not be coming?”

    Jedi Master Stass Allie shook her head slightly, displacing the tendrils of her Tholothian headdress. “Perhaps not Isaska, but I sense that there is more here to be found, and that only through patience will it be revealed to us.”

    She could feel her Padawan’s resigned acceptance through the bond they shared. Ever since Quinlan Vos had left the Jedi order a number of Jedi had participated in the search for him. Stass and her Padawan, Isaska Ryn, had spent the last two weeks crawling through the lower reaches of Nar Shaddaa in their search for the traitorous former Jedi Master.

    The assignment was not an easy one for Isaska, and that was part of the reason why Stass had requested it. Isaska’s pale skin and silvery hair marked her out to anyone as an Echani and while she had excelled at the combative portions of her Jedi training the more diplomatic uses of the Force had withered during the long years of war. Echani were a naturally combative species, who believed that the only way to truly know someone was through battle; long stakeouts and surveillance did not come easily to them.

    But Isaska knew this and despite her unrest Stass felt Isaska accept the necessity of their inaction. Stass knew that it would soon be time for Isaska’s trials, there was not much more that she could be taught.

    There was a whisper in the Force, the slightest draw upon Stass’ awareness and she tensed. A momentary flash of foresight, concealed by the ever shifting clouds that had long become familiar to the Jedi, flickered across her consciousness. A room, a large one, not far from where they were waiting for Vos, the Hogwart Plaza.

    She placed a hand upon Isaska’s shoulder and whispered, “I sense something not far from here. You should wait here while I investigate it.”

    “What is it Master?” replied Isaska, her focus sharpening again in the Force. “I cannot feel anything.”

    “I am not sure,” Stass admitted. “It feels like… an arrival, though of whom I could not say. It does not feel like Vos. Remain here, it will not take me long to backtrack to where I believe it is sourced.”

    Isaska accepted the command without complaint, once again showing Stass that she had come far since she had been the young and rebellious child of Stass’ memories.

    Without using the Force, for fear that such use would tip off Vos should he be waiting to enter the club they had been watching for the last four days, Stass moved slowly and methodically away from their hiding place. As soon as she was at a safe distance she picked up the pace until she was striding quickly through the noisome shadows of Nar Shaddaa.

    As she had said to her Padawan, it was not a lengthy walk. Before ten minutes had passed she entered the Hogwart Plaza, named for some unpleasant plant long lost to time. It was a strange but also curiously underwhelming sight that met her eyes.

    A human, or near human. Very tall and thin and sporting a waist-length beard of smooth hair, he was wearing unusual rich-looking robes of deep burgundy and bespeckled with stars in silver and gold that seemed to capture and hold the anaemic light of the Nar Shaddaa undercity.

    He spoke to himself in a language that Stass could not recognise. Ordinarily the Jedi Master could at least recognise a language, even if they could not comprehend it but this was utterly alien.

    Stass called gently upon the Force, and willed it to provide her with understanding.

    “-at I expected.” the man said as he perched a delicate pair of half moon spectacles upon his long, crooked nose. “It seems… My word.”

    He then looked directly at Stass, despite her skillful concealment in the shadows and there was no doubt that his words were directed at the Jedi. “Come out, my dear. I seem to have misplaced myself, perhaps you could help me?”

    His eyes were a bright sky blue and despite his obvious age they were not faded or rheumy. There was the spark of a keen intelligence there and Stass felt a slight caress from the Force that suggested he could be a Force sensitive. She stepped from the shadows and the man’s blue eyes twinkled.​

    I really wanted to do a HP/Mass Effect crossover, I even got to the point of writing an entire prologue plus half of the first chapter twice (turned out harder than I'd hoped):

    “With all due respect, sir, you have no say in Spectre assignments.”

    It was an old argument. Shepard felt like she was being called to Earth three times in the last three weeks to listen to some irrelevant politician harping on about ‘misallocation of resources’.

    She’d honestly considered offering them nothing more than the middle finger salute, the only thing that had held her back was her own unwillingness to tarnish the reputation of those who served aboard the Normandy. She didn’t give a rat’s ass what Systems Alliance command thought of her, but not everyone she worked with was in that position.

    “The men and women on the Normandy, even the ship itself! Are the property of the Systems Alliance,” repeated the aged senator before her. “All I’m asking is that we should have some say in how our property is deployed. Is that so unreasonable?”

    Shepard sighed tiredly. “On the face of it? No. But you and I both know exactly why you’d like ‘your say’ and so I’ll repeat myself, yet again. The Normandy and her crew are under Spectre authority, if you have a request then it should go through the Council.”

    And fortunately, in Shepard’s view, the Council hoarded their toys like a jealous infant. Even though it seemed Shepard was constantly at loggerheads with the Council over the ‘Reaper’ issue and the complete lack of real response they still were unwilling to get her out of their sight. More likely it was precisely because of that; the Council did not want Shepard’s worrying warnings heard by anyone who might take her seriously.

    So they required almost daily reports and had sent her into the arse-end of the galaxy to ‘end the Geth threat’.

    But that was better than taking part in some goddamn propaganda vid.

    “After the losses at the Battle of the Citadel recruitment is at an all-time low,” bit out the senator. “Losses that are a direct result of your actions. You owe Humanity, Shepard.”

    Shepard nodded, eliciting a surprised look from the senator. “I do, but I owe you nothing. Now if we’re done here I have real lives to save.”

    With that she turned to leave, only to be halted at the door by two guardsmen as the senator called out to them.

    She looked between them both. They were armed, but only with their sidearms and they weren’t wearing any combat gear. Neither was Shepard, but Shepard was a biotic, and so that was a questionably assertion. Biotics were always dangerous.

    “Kids, do you really want to try me?” she asked, her voice flat.

    The guardsmen shared a glance before simultaneously reaching the same conclusion. No, they did not want to try her. There were some advantages to being Commander Sarah Shepard, Hero of both the Citadel and the Skyllian Blitz, First Human Spectre.

    Without those titles she wasn’t anywhere near so impressive. She wasn’t tall and nor was she especially imposing physically. Everything about her spoke of a consummate professional. Everything she did was done for a reason, and that reason was usually to improve her ability to lead and fight upon the battlefield. For that reason she wore unremarkable alliance standard uniform, kept her auburn hair cut short and her face was completely without any makeup or adornment. She wore no earrings, no necklace save her dog tags and her fingers were absent of rings.

    But her name was exceptional now. Shepard was all business and no swagger, and the galaxy had quickly come to realise that in the three weeks since the Battle of the Citadel.

    Both of the guards stepped aside.

    She nodded to them both. “Keep using those brains of yours,” she suggested, “you’ll go far.”

    She strode from the room, taking pleasure as the senator’s wheedling complaints were snuffed out by the door as it hissed closed. Almost immediately, she was beset again. Camera flashes went off all around her; the media had got wind of her latest Earth visit.

    “Commander! Can you comment on the reason for your meeting with Senator Reynalds?”

    “Commander Shepard! How is the campaign against the Geth progressing?”

    “Commander!”

    “Shepard!”

    “Commander Shepard!”

    She pushed her way through the clamour of reporters, repeating the military mantra of ‘no comment’ every few seconds. They proved infuriatingly persistent, however and continued to follow her as she left the senate chambers and stepped out onto the streets of London.

    In a few short minutes Shepard soon had to restrain herself from introducing the rabble to a singularity or two. They even got in the way as she tried to hail down a cab.

    She eventually managed to give them the slip by stepping to a narrow dark alley away from the street. She sighed in relief when, somehow, they didn’t opt to follow her and instead milled about in confusion at her sudden disappearance.

    She decided to move further down the alley, while she did not have a particularly high opinion of the intelligence of reporters she knew that it didn’t exactly take a genius to work out where she’d gone.

    She walked quickly down the alley, one of the many old London streets that had been built around and largely forgotten with the advent of the hovercar. She even saw a sign proudly proclaiming this cramped alley to be called ‘Charing Cross Road’.

    One side of the alley was the featureless concrete walls of the new development that had cut this old part of London off from the rest, the other, though, was like a time capsule.

    Boarded up shopfronts stretched into the gloom, each adorned with a peeling or broken sign. One in particular caught her eye though. It was a pub, and it wasn’t boarded up like the others. Even more incredibly it looked even older than the surrounding buildings.

    The Leaky Cauldron. She looked at it for a moment before electing to go in. London was one of the very few cities left on Earth that still hid gems like this ancient pub.

    The door swung easily open with nary a creak. The inside was everything she’d thought it would be. It was dark, the air seemed thick, as if it could remember the millions of cigarettes that had been smoked within the walls. Dark wood and darker shadows adorned all the walls and ceiling. A few incredibly ancient gas lights flickered upon the walls giving it the feel of some child’s vision of a haunted house.

    On the far side of the room there was a bar of dark and pitted wood. A man was sat at the end, hunched over a drink.

    “Don’t see many people coming around here these days,” he spoke in a surprisingly cultured English accent. He didn’t turn around but he did kick the bar stool next to him towards her just slightly. “Pull up a stool.”

    Perhaps it was the two weeks of constant politicking and pointless assignments, but Shepard did as he suggested.

    “Tough day, huh?” the man asked when she took her seat. He slid a worn tankard of something topped with foamy froth over to her.

    Her eyes narrowed as she took a sip of the thick and oddly filling drink. It wasn’t all that strong but she found she didn’t much care. “How did you know?”

    He chuckled. “You’re in a deserted and run down old pub, in a forgotten London back-alley and all I needed to do was kick a stool at you to convince you to have a drink.”

    Shepard couldn’t help echoing his chuckle at that; the left over tension went with it. “Ha, yeah, when you put it like that…” She rubbed the back of her neck. “You could say that, more like a tough month, really.”

    The man grunted and she looked over him. He was taller than she was, probably, it was hard to judge while they were both sitting. He had medium length dark hair, it had once probably been deep black but time had taken its toll and it had faded to the muted black of an overwashed shirt, it was flecked through with grey.

    He was wearing slim rimmed glasses, an odd anachronism nowadays as even otherwise untreatable eye problems could be easily corrected with permanent implants. Behind the glasses were two intelligent looking eyes that somehow managed to communicate to Shepard an intense sense of world-weariness.

    Above one eye was a scar, so faded as to be almost unnoticeable in the gloom.

    He was dressed tidily in a somewhat old-fashioned looking dress shirt and dark trousers. He looked like a lawyer on his day off.

    He took a drink before speaking, “Want to talk about it?”

    She stared absently at the strange but very pleasant drink he’d handed across before taking another, larger, gulp. “Not really.”

    “Fair enough,” said the man. And that was that, he didn’t push at all.

    There was a long companionable pause as Shepard simply enjoyed the lack of expectations. Eventually she was moved to speak. “What about you?”

    He shrugged. “I just come here to remember, don’t often get visitors.”

    That prompted Shepard to notice that they really were the only two people there, there wasn’t even a barman, not that she had any idea how a barman could hope to make a living in such an out-of-the-way pub. “This is a bar, right? Where’s the barman?”

    “You’re looking at him, I suppose,” said the man with a chuckle. “I own this fine establishment. Don’t know if I’d call myself the barman though.”

    She raised an eyebrow. “You bought a secluded bar to get drunk in?”

    “I didn’t really buy it,” he said with a lazy wave of his hand. “I just… came into possession of it. Didn’t want it going to waste.” White teeth flashed in the gloom as he smiled humourlessly.

    “I didn’t know places like this still existed,” admitted Shepard. “It’s a pity about the location.”

    “As I said, I have no interest in being a publican,” the man said before taking another drink. Shepard joined him. “Much prefer the quiet, present company excepted, of course.”

    There was another comfortable silence as they both sipped on their drinks. Eventually Shepard set hers down, empty. “Do you have another of these… what are they?”

    “Butterbeer,” said the man as he reached behind the bar and pulled out another one from somewhere to hand to her.

    “Never heard of it,” said Shepard, curious.

    The man shook his head. “I wouldn’t have thought you would, this place was the last place that sold it and it mostly closed up shop thirty years ago.”

    It was strange to think that when this bar had closed Humanity had thought itself alone in the universe.

    “How’d you find out about this place?” she asked, more to fill the time than out of any real want or need for information.

    “Came here as a kid before it closed,” said the man. “A few years ago I decided to see if it still existed. Hey presto.”

    Shepard peered at her already half empty tankard suspiciously. “Is this stuff thirty years old?”

    For the first time the man barked out a true laugh. “Ha! No, I can brew it myself.”

    “You should think about selling it,” she suggested and took another drink. “It’s pretty good stuff.”

    “Maybe,” he said though Shepard felt sure he was being diplomatic, he had no intention of selling the stuff. He paused for a moment. “I do have something that’s thirty years old though.”

    He reached behind the bar again and this time his hand came up holding an old-fashioned bottle with a browning label that marked the contents as being ‘Ogden’s Firewhiskey’. He fished out two glasses and splashed some of the reddish brown liquid into each. He slid one across to Shepard.

    She surprised herself when she took the glass up and downed the liquid without hesitation.

    Immediately her eyes began to water and she coughed and spluttered as the powerful drink burned its way down her throat to settle in her stomach. She felt it fill her with warmth almost immediately.

    “Wow,” she said when she’d recovered. “That’s good stuff. I could use some of this after having to deal with the damned Council.”

    The man, perhaps sensibly, refrained from downing his own and instead swilled it and breathed the almost burnt smelling aroma in. “Arseholes?” he asked as he refilled her glass.

    Shepard snorted. “Arsehole, cloaca and whatever the fuck it is Turians have,” she affirmed.

    The man glanced across at her. “Forgive me, Turian?”

    She blinked and stared at him in confusion. What was he asking? “Council race?” she tried before realising that she was just repeating herself. “The first alien race we ever met? First Contact War? 2157? Big scaly bird people?”

    “Huh,” he said without much surprise. “Fancy that.” He took another sip of his drink.

    Shepard wasn’t going to let that slide, especially not with Two Butterbeers and close to two Firewhiskeys inside her. “You’ve never heard of Turians?”

    “Probably have,” the man admitted without looking up to meet her gaze. “Probably didn’t seem all that important.”

    “‘Not that important’?” she repeated, her eyes wide. “The first living race of sentients we ever encountered, the gateway to the greater galactic community, ‘not that important’?”

    He shrugged again. “Never met one yet, just doesn’t seem that important, really.”

    Shepard supposed that made a kind of sense in an infuriating ‘bury your head in the sand’ kind of way. “What if the First Contact War had been worse?” she asked, almost managing to keep her voice level. “What if they’d invaded Earth?”

    The man was unmoved. “Then they would probably have been more important. But they didn’t, so they aren’t.”

    She looked away and downed what remained of her Firewhiskey, she set it back down on the bar a little harder than she’d intended but the bang was absorbed by the thick air of the bar.

    The man didn’t seem to mind. He didn’t react except to refill her glass when he finished his own at last.

    They sat together in silence for a while as Shepard tried to stop herself from giving him a piece of her mind. Usually she would be able to restrain herself, the Firewhiskey was powerful stuff though.

    “That’s exactly the attitude I have to fight every day,” she said at last. “Short sighted people living short sighted little lives. If they can’t see the problem it doesn’t exist and if they can see the problem then all they need to do it close their eyes and hum a tune and it will go away of its own accord.”

    The man didn’t react but she felt like she’d got his attention. She plunged on. “All sentient life in the galaxy could have been extinguished less than a month ago and you just don’t care, do you. No-one cares. You just want to sit in this bar ‘remembering’ whatever the fuck little little life you’ve had. What happens when the Reapers return? Tell me that. Oh, you’ll accept them as a problem then will you? Well it’ll be too fucking late by then.”

    “‘Oh but you’ll save us, Commander Shepard’,” she wheedled in a passable impression of Councilor Valern. “Fuck, sometimes I think I should just leave you all to wallow in your own mess. But I don’t, why? Because You might be messy, ignorant and short sighted as all hell but at least you’re damn well alive.”

    She subsided and downed her third Firewhiskey. She pushed her stool back and staggered a little as she went to stand. She hadn’t thought she was this drunk.

    “Does that feel better?” the man asked mildly, seemingly not at all angered by her diatribe.

    It felt a little like the ground had shifted under her, people weren’t supposed to take that kind of chewing out with such sanguine grace. Especially as he didn’t deserve it, not really. He wasn’t a politician, his outlook was limited for good reason. “Look, I’m sorry about that. This month’s just… urgh,” she trailed off. She had to admit, though, it did feel better to get it off her back.

    The man poured her another glass of Firewhiskey and slid it over to where she’d been seated. “Why don’t you tell me about it then?” he asked as he turned to look at her properly for the first time since she’d entered the bar. “Enlighten me.”

    Shepard found herself retaking her seat at the bar and taking a tiny sip of the Firewhiskey he’d poured her. It wouldn’t do to return to the Normandy blind drunk, she was already well past regs.

    “Technically, it’s classified,” she said with a frown.

    “To help them with the ‘bury their head in the sand’ plan?” he asked, interested.

    She paused. “What the hell,” she said eventually. “This Spectre went rogue, Spectre stands for Special Tactics and Reconnaissance. A Turian called Saren, he was recruited by a sentient starship called Sovereign.”

    The man’s eyes widened and Shepard smiled mirthlessly. “Long story short, Sovereign is part of an entire… race of sentient machines called ‘Reapers’. 50,000 years ago they descended upon the galaxy and killed off all advanced life before retreating back into dark space. Saren tried to open the front door for them less than a month ago. He was stopped and the Reaper was destroyed but to take down that one ship we had to amass a large proportion of the entire human fleet. Even then we took heavy losses.”

    In the silence that followed the man downed the dregs of his drink and poured himself another. “That certainly sounds like it would be important,” he said, his voice level.

    Shepard nodded her agreement. “You’d think.”

    “But they don’t want to hear it right?” he asked, understanding her now. “They’d rather believe you’re mad, delusional or simply misguided?”

    “Not quite that far,” she admitted. “They’re just trying to keep it quiet, they just skirt the issue as much as possible. They keep saying that they ‘don’t want to cause a panic’.” The air quotes were probably a result of the alcohol.

    “So what will you do?”

    “My job.” Shepard downed the most recent glass, her intent to nurse it carefully was completely forgotten. “To be honest I don’t have the first fucking clue how I’m supposed to stop an entire race of godlike AI’s from destroying the galaxy.”

    “Understandable,” the man muttered. “Tough to know where to start really.”

    Shepard grunted affirmation. “Oh, did I mention that they can mind-control people too? Yeah, that.”

    A snort escaped her drinking partner. “Of course.”

    Shepard peered at him a little blearily. “You don’t seem to be all that worried about the impending and possibly imminent death of all intelligent life in the galaxy?”

    “How am I supposed to react?” he asked her logically. “Should I run out into the street and shout to everyone that the end-times are upon us? Just lay down and die quietly? Hope that you, or someone else, fixes it? Pick up a gun and run out into the galaxy looking for something to shoot?”

    “If I knew I’d tell you,” admitted Shepard. “But right now I’d settle for any of the options that don’t involve waiting for death or blindly hoping for the best.”

    The man downed the last of his glass and screwed the top back on the bottle. “Good advice, maybe once I’m a bit more sober I’ll try and pick one.”

    Shepard took the cue and stood up. It only took a couple of attempts to manage it successfully. “Sorry ‘bout laying my problems on you like that.” She blinked as the man swam in and out of focus. “Oh.”

    Suddenly the world went sideways and she found herself laying on the ground. Joker was going to have a field-day if he found out about this. Maybe it would be best to sleep it off first.

    “You want a hand getting back?” the stranger asked. She realised she still didn’t know his name.

    “‘M Sarah Shepard,” she said from her position on the floor. The old wooden floor felt cold and somehow soft at the same time. “Who’re you?”

    An arm went around her shoulder and she felt him pull her upright before finally darkness closed in on her. Just moments before her sight faded she was sure she felt a strange pressure in her stomach.

    o-o​

    “You look like hell Commander,” said Joker as Shepard grumbled her way to the bridge later that day. She wasn’t feeling any better at all for the nap. She still didn’t know how she’d gotten back to the ship. “Good night… uh… late morning on the tiles?”

    “Set course for the Amada system,” she said her voice deep and her throat raw. He chose to ignore his needling. It was impossible to beat Joker at his own game and so Shepard didn’t even try. “There’s apparently been evidence of Geth activity in the area.”

    “Aye aye, sir,” said Joker readily. “Want me to keep us pointed away from the sun when we get there?”

    Shepard rolled her eyes and immediately regretted it. The whole bridge started to swim. She clamped down on the nausia. “Just get us there, Joker.”

    o-o​

    Alliance Command confirmed this morning that Commander Shepard, Hero of the Citadel, is believed to be dead after her ship was attacked and destroyed by unknown assailants in an unknown star system.

    The Citadel Council released a statement calling upon the galaxy to remember Shepard’s sacrifice against Saren and his Geth. In their statement they renewed their promise to elevate humanity to the Council. Captain Anderson, Shepard’s old commanding officer and known to be her recommendation for the post, is currently the front-runner for the position.

    Then I played Assassin's Creed Syndicate and decided that HP/Assassin's Creed hadn't been done properly. And I'd just read Dodger again (Terry Pratchett) and wanted to do something with some Dickensian overtures:

    The world was coming apart at the seams. Fire rained from the sky, and all across the world the artifices of Humanity, thought for so long to be true and unshakeable, burned and crumbled.

    Muggles, wizards and all manner of creatures and animals cried out in fear and despair as they watched all they knew come to an abrupt end. The sun, finally tired of the excesses and petty squabbles of mankind had lashed out and cleansing flames caressed the planet as the slate was wiped clean again, as it had been before.

    In a great castle, a bastion against the apocalypse, a few people yet survived, though for how long they knew not. The ancient spells that had protected Hogwarts through the millennia groaned under the assault.

    Harry Potter, a young man and tall with a powerful presence that was only slightly dimmed by the sheer measure of the catastrophe that had befallen the world, stared out of a window high in one of the many towers of that ancient castle as he watched the Forbidden Forest consumed by fire. Beside him were a few companions, too few.

    He turned to them with a grim look upon his face and spoke, ‘This is it then. All our battles, our trials and tribulations have come to nothing. It all seems so… inconsequential now, in the face of all this.’

    ‘At least we have this time to say goodbye, mate,’ Ron Weasley said, his usually bright eyes now wholly devoid of mirth. ‘More than any of the other poor sods had.’

    They all knew, of course, that Death could not be long escaped. Like in the Tale of the Three Brothers that had been so important in the adventures of their not so distant youth there was no escape when Death elected to visit.

    Harry looked across at those who were with him, Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger, Minerva McGonagall, Neville Longbottom, Ginny Weasley and so few others, teachers and students at what had once been the premier magical school in the world; now and for a short time only, the sole surviving magical school in the world.

    Hermione was chewing on her lip, deep in thought. Her eyes looked out across the devastation unfocused and unseeing. At last she spoke, ‘What if there was a chance to save everyone?’

    It seemed to those others around her that she had left her senses far behind. After all, the world, humanity, wizards and muggles both, had already died in the fires from the sky, how could the dead be saved? Even the wonders of magic could not return the dead to life. Yet everyone there knew Hermione, and they knew that her senses were not so easily shaken loose.

    ‘What do you mean, Hermione?’ asked Harry after a pause. Hermione’s tendency to get lost in big thoughts was a quirk they had all grown used to.

    ‘Time-travel.’ Her eyes were alight and burned brighter even than the sky, wreathed in flames. ‘It might not work, it probably won’t work. But there’s a chance, a tiny one, that everyone could be saved.’

    Harry rubbed the back of his head, clearly puzzled by her idea and so he questioned her. ‘But you said that it’s impossible to go back in time more than a few hours?’

    ‘I did, but that’s not strictly true. It’s impossible to go more than a few hours back safely,’ she said breathlessly. ‘But I don’t think safety is our main concern when the atmosphere is burning.’

    ‘Time turners are restricted objects,’ objected McGonagall weakly for she knew that Hermione would not have offered the suggestion if she did not have one in her possession.

    Hermione pulled the object in question from beneath her somewhat singed robes, the result of a failed attempt to reach some of children who had been playing a pick-up game of Quidditch when the apocalypse had come for them.

    She held the small egg-timer device up to the dancing red light and it swung on the gossamer thin silver chain. Such a small thing, yet so powerful. Each of them looked upon the tiny apparatus and felt the smallest sliver of hope thought lost to the death of a world.

    As they looked upon it a spells that had so long kept Hogwarts safe and secure groaned again under the unending bombardment of the end of days.

    A crash echoed throughout the castle as the great doors were struck by the raging inferno outside, only long years of magical exposure allowed them to withstand the heat and force. Everyone looked around and, as one, ran to the main hall where most of the remaining children had been gathered to cower in the face of the wrath of Gods.

    As they ran Hermione pressed the timeturner into Harry’s hand and whispered to him, ‘If the charms protecting the school fall I want you to go, as far back as you can. It doesn’t matter when, okay?’

    ‘I won’t be going alone,” Harry protested back, his voice similarly lowered. ‘We’ll get the kids to the dungeons, maybe the Chamber so that they’ll be safe even if we fail, and you and me and Ron will all go. Together.’

    Her hand squeezed his for a fraction of a second then retreated, leaving the timeturner in Harry’s palm. ‘Put it on. If only one of us survives, you’re the one I trust to save the rest of us.’

    Harry wisely decided not to argue the point, though he determined to himself that there was no chance that he would leave his friends. Even if he had been sure that he would be able to save them using the time-turner he would have been loath to run and abandon them. If the choice was between facing the unknown alone, or death with his friends he knew which option would win every time.

    The Great Hall was in pandemonium. The remaining teachers and most of the prefects had taken up posts at Hogwarts’ huge doors and were casting spells of cooling and preservation upon the aged timbers. Despite their efforts the wood was darkening and burning in the face of temperatures beyond any before seen on Earth.

    Harry Potter stepped forward and a hush descended upon the panicking teachers and students. Everyone knew Harry’s reputation, such was their belief in him that even now most felt sure that he would be able to save them from the doom that had befallen their world.

    ‘Hermione, Minerva, get the children down to the Chamber. Ron? I hope you can still remember the parseltongue to open that sink as I am going to be needed here.’ As he spoke he rolled the loose sleeves of his robes and flicked his wand into his hand. The action had an air of finality to it, as if Harry himself had decided that here was where the Apocalypse would be stopped.

    None in the Hall doubted him.

    Power flooded from his wand. Thin strands of gold and silver spread out from the tip and where they touched the door glowed and held firm. Sweat beaded on Harry’s forehead as he maintained his concentration. He glanced at the others who had been fighting to keep the door from giving way and his tight voice said, ‘You should go too. I can hold this long enough.’

    They each nodded and moved quickly to follow the stream of children descending towards Myrtle’s bathroom.

    Harry was right, though only barely. He held back Armageddon for long enough and not a second more. It took just minutes for the children to be brought to the relative safety of Salazar Slytherin’s secret chamber so deep beneath the boiling lake. In those minutes the heat grew further and the charms and spells upon Hogwarts weakened further. Soon Harry was enveloped in a bright golden web of flickering and shifting lights. Each thread reached out to a different door, a different window and each held back the End of Days.

    For just long enough, no more.

    Harry dropped to his knees as he focused his mind on the single task of preserving Hogwarts and the children who remained within. Then his concentration was broken.

    ‘Harry!’ called Hermione from the far end of the Hall. ‘They are safe, come quickly!’

    But the damage was done, his concentration flickered for just the briefest moment and the maelstrom of fire burst through the doors and windows all around. His clothes and wand started to char and smoke in the abominable heat and in a last desperate effort he threw out his hands and a globe of pure gold coalesced around him, just wide enough to shield Hermione from the worst of the flames but it could not be enough to save her.

    The shield could not last long and both of them knew it. Hermione called out to him one last time, ‘Go Harry! Go! You can fix this, I know you can!’

    Unable to speak Harry communicated with his eyes alone, Don’t make me do this, they implored.

    Hermione did not respond, instead, even has her hair started to smoke and shrivel she brandished her wand at him and cried her last word, ‘Circumactio!’

    The time-turner at his chest span in a blur, the angry buzzing was lost against the roaring inferno and Harry screamed at her, ‘No!’

    The golden shield collapsed, the fires rushed inwards, Harry Potter disappeared from the world.

    o-o​

    High in the air over London a figure appeared. The thick cloying smoke of the new industry concealed him from the ground but appear he did. A mixed shout of anguish, anger and surprise echoed between the towering smokestacks as the man began his rapid descent towards the earth below.

    He spun uncontrollably through the air, too disoriented by the sudden transition of circumstances to react effectively. As he fell the smoke billowed around him and he left a long trail through the visible air, though none of the milling masses in the streets below saw it. After all, the sky of London had little to recommend it, and few took the time to glance upwards when so much was being done at ground level.

    For the fires of industry had been kindled in London and from there spread across the world. Great chimneys dotted the city and breathed heavy greasy smoke across the sky. The ground shook under the weight of great engines and machinery and the Thames was choked with barges of all sizes and shapes. A sea of humanity had come to the city from all across England, and from all across the Empire. Everyone was looking to make their fortune in the greatest city in the world.

    Many and more would not make their fortune, and a few would trade their lives for no gain. The city called out to something within the minds of men and women alike but it was heartless. The city was a machine like the steam engines that plied the newly constructed railways even now spreading across the countryside; it required a fuel.

    A lump of coal can never rise to own a train; a poor man will never own a factory. It was a truth carefully kept from all those who laboured long, dangerous hours in the hope of a better future for themselves and their families.

    Harry Potter knew none of this as he had much more immediate concerns facing him, such as the rapidly approaching ground, still concealed by the early evening fog. He brought about his blackened wand and cried a spell into the air. The words were whipped away in moments but the effects were visible, if not exactly as substantial as he would have hoped. His descent slowed, but he still struck one of the sloped tiled roofs with dazing force. Worse, before he could recover he started slipping across the soot-slicked tiles and in less than a second was falling again, this time only four stories but it was enough to knock him out completely.

    It is said by some that when a tree falls in a forest it makes no sound, but when a man falls in London town there is most certainly a sound. That sound is; ‘Quick, check ‘is pockets!’

    He landed in a grubby alley between two tenements and the small group of children who had been playing tag between the muddy puddles immediately crowded around his still body.

    ‘Ere, d’in’t ‘e just fall from outta the sky?’ asked one boy as he stared into the noisome clouds over London.

    ‘Course ‘e didn’t,’ said another knowledgeably. ‘’Im felled off the roof. Probably a chimney sweep.’

    ‘Don’t look like no chimney sweep I know,’ said a third boy unsurely. ‘There’s Grubby Willie an’ Black-nose Ned an’—’

    ‘Clothes don’t look like no chimney sweep neither,’ said the first boy, emboldened by the discussion. ‘Them’s nobby clothes them is.’

    The children all looked again at the unusual clothes Harry was wearing. ‘Is ‘e one of them dandies? Why’s ‘e wearing a dress?’

    ‘Ow should we know?’ asked another and he shrugged indifferently. ‘Them nobs and their nobby clothes is always changing. ‘Ere, ‘elp me go through ‘is pockets. Nob like ‘im probably has a few sovereigns on ‘im at least.’

    The children immediately started rifling through his pockets and it was a process punctuated by more than a few surprised gasps and impressed whistles.

    They found the necklace that had once been Hermione’s time turner, one of the bulbs now smashed and the sands lost to the skies of London. They found his wand, though that was not as interesting as the impossibly thin gold necklace upon which the broken time-turner still hung. Suddenly, one of the children jumped back.

    ‘’Ere, ‘e’s still alive!’

    ‘Don’t be stupid, ‘e fell from right ‘igh up. Ain’t no-one survive a fall like that,’ scoffed a girl. ‘I saw Fingerless Nev fall off’f the the roof into Whitechapel, ‘is legs were all askew and ‘ought.’

    ‘I tell ya, ‘e’s breathin’, look!’ said the boy who’d jumped back.

    An older boy poked at the fallen man’s chest. ‘You sure? dun’t look alive to me, Will.’

    The man groaned in pain and shifted on the ground slowly. This time all of the children jumped back. ‘Oi shit, Will’s right. Scarper!’​

    Aand for a long time I was toying with the idea of a HP/Interstellar crossover which looks like it will never happen as most of the ideas and themes morphed into a completely original story, so the prologue is going to go uncontinued I think:

    The high screeching of a bedside alarm slowly roused Harry Potter from his slumber. He groaned in frustration and rolled over, as was his habit, to embrace his beautiful wife before facing the long day ahead.

    His arms found only empty space on the other side of the well worn mattress they’d used for so many years. How many times had she tried to convince him to replace it? He couldn’t remember, he’d always said, “But this one feels like you.” What were a few wrinkles when they’d shared so much?

    His thoughts flitted to the reason for her absence and what little good mood he’d still had departed swiftly. He lay there for a moment before he decided that there was no point remaining in bed if she was not there to share it with him.

    He slowly raised himself from the bed and looked about the well worn room. It had been a while since he’d been left to his own devices in their house and it sported the hallmarks of a man alone. Shoes, socks and underwear were strewn about the floor and across the seat and dresser in the corner.

    Her bedside table, though, was as spotless as it always was. On it sat a picture, old technology now, really. In it was a young couple, both with dark hair, hugging each-other affectionately and wearing matching contented smiles. Harry loved that picture, his Amelia never looked more beautiful than when that amazing smile spread across her fair features.

    He was a few inches taller than her and she was resting her head on his shoulder as they both looked out of the picture in serene comfort. His green eyes sparkled behind his thin, black rimmed glasses. Of the two his hair was darkest, a thick midnight black nest of rebellious hair adorned his head and further accentuated his unusual eyes. On his forehead was the palest remnant of an old life, the lightening bolt scar that had defined his entire childhood. He would probably be described as handsome, he had high cheekbones and a strong jaw. He was muscular and svelte looking, or so he was told.

    He’d always felt that Amelia was the more attractive of the two of them. Her darkest brown hair was nearly as dark as his yet so much better behaved. In the photo it cascaded all around her face in a way that framed her wonderful, soulful eyes and he could never help staring. Those eyes were impossibly large and round, a deep brown that could communicate with him without words. A delicate nose and perfect lips finished off her soft yet beautifully defined features. She too was fairly tall, though not as tall as he, and over the years he had come to appreciate the wonder of her slender body.

    He finally broke his gaze from her features and reflected on how much he’d come to miss her over these last weeks. At least he would see her again today.

    Eventually he managed to clamber out of his bed and slouched his way to the shower. His daily path worn into the wood like material of the floor. With each new day and each new year it became harder to will himself out of bed, he was sure that it was only Amelia’s voice in his mind and the thought of her presence that got him moving in the early hours. Soon that weariness was washed away as the water sluiced over him and he stood beneath the shower head for a long few minutes as he slowly began to feel more invigorated.

    As he left the shower he collected one of the towels and quickly began drying himself off as he returned to the bedroom and ambled over to the wardrobe. He quickly found some suitable clothes. He wanted to look his best today for Amelia when he saw her and so he chose an expensively cut shirt and comfortable yet pleasing chinos.

    Once again, like every morning in these last few weeks, he missed the kiss that would have been part of his morning routine and sighed sadly before making his way down the stairs and into the kitchen of their house.

    It was not an especially large house compared to what he’d known as a child but by the standards of their new homeworld it was a mansion. The first true house, built of bricks and mortar rather than from pre-fab steel sections and concrete.

    He pressed the button the set the ancient kettle going then grabbed some some cereal and a bowl and walked across to the lonely table to eat his breakfast in near silence. Crunching from the dry cereal filled the room as he slowly made his way through the bowl. They still hadn’t been able to properly culture the many animal genomes that had been brought from Earth in the computer archives of Cooper Station and the other exodus platforms. That meant no milk and Harry had never much liked water in his cereal. He’d once tried orange juice at his wife’s behest and had been left aghast that she could be so casual about what amounted to a minor felony to Harry’s way of thinking.

    At least tea and coffee had made the transition. It was still hideously expensive as most cultivated areas still focussed on food production and obviously it had to be taken black but at least it existed.

    The kettle chimed and switched off as the water within boiled. Harry pushed himself up from his chair and poured some into a large mug with some instant coffee. He added a couple of sweeteners and walked back to his breakfast as he sipped at the still scaldingly hot drink. Just the way he liked it.

    Amelia was always been amazed at the fact he could drink it at that temperature. He would just smile and say ‘Magic!’ as he wiggled his fingers in front of his face. She would inevitably roll her eyes, smile indulgently and say something about him still acting like a child.

    How he missed her smile.

    He soon finished his breakfast and washed everything up as he’d been taught over the years. The bedroom might be a terrible mess but he always kept the kitchen spotless.

    Finally, an hour after his alarm had dragged him once again into the waking world he went out the door of his house and stood as he so often did in his well maintained garden and looked out over the world he still thought of as ‘Potter’s Planet’. Most now called it New Earth but it’s official name had been changed to Joseph both for the biblical connotations and as a nod to the man that had made Plan A feasible.

    He walked out onto the street and down the road towards the coast. He’d spend so long on this planet and never seen the sea until the colony stations appeared overhead. Long years on the planet, researching and experimenting and he’d never seen what the planet truly had to offer.

    He reached a coastal path and lowered himself into a seat to look out over the shoreline as the sun rose again over the new home of Humanity.

    It certainly wasn’t as beautiful as he remembered from the Earth of his youth. It was fairly dreary, and possessed a bland, flat landscape. It was nowhere near so tectonically active as Earth was and so it was a planet of almost unending low rolling hills.

    At least the oceans were more beautiful than Earth. This planet didn’t have anything close to the abundance of life Earth had once possessed; mostly just mosses, lichens and algae. It was the algae that gave this planet its trully extraordinary views.

    The coastal seas would change colour throughout the day. A deep purple during the night and early morning but as soon as the sun came up it would shift slowly through the most striking turquoise blue imaginable before settling on a rich shade of green. No-one quite understood why, some put it down to the fact that Gargantua’s accretion disk which spun through the night sky above the planet gave off a dim red to yellow light in the visible spectrum. They posited that perhaps the algae altered their shade to absorb more energy from it during the night but no-one had been able to confirm any real benefit.

    It didn’t much matter to Harry. It was a fabulous sight to be greeted with in the morning. Ever since he and Amelia had discovered the phenomenon he often made a point of coming out to watch the bright light of their new sun peak over the horizon.

    A year upon New Earth was a very complex affair. It was located in the Gargantua - Pantagruel system but was far distant from the great black hole that dominated the region. Pantagruel was a neutron star that orbited Gargantua at a substantial distance and had satellites of its own. Around Pantagruel spun Rabelais, the red dwarf star that now warmed New Earth.

    It took New Earth a bit less than two weeks to orbit Rabelais, more than half an Earth year to orbit Pantagruel and then nearly two and a half thousand Earth years to complete one orbit of Gargantua. Harry had left the puzzling out of that particular problem to greater minds than his. There was one advantage, though. The days on New Earth were only a little longer than those he remembered back home. It was still all very confusing, even after so long here.

    The night sky above was truly extraordinary. Stars wheeled overhead in a complex dance, no night ever exactly the same. Gargantua turned across the night sky, larger than the moon on old Earth. The accretion that spun about it was twisted and warped by the impossible gravity of the supermassive black hole. The last feature was a tiny speck that drifted through the star field and all around it the stars curled around the distortion of the tiny Pantagruel.

    For someone who had grown up on Earth the night sky was spellbinding.

    As he sat in his accustomed spot the world slowly started to come to life. This settlement was the largest on the planet and soon many were passing his peaceful lookout spot. As each passed they would greet him politely and with respect, he would nod his head and mutter a few words back in thanks.

    He had gone so very many years without any contact that for so long he’d forgotten what it was like to be known by everyone. Now that he was thought of by many as the ‘father’ of the planet he was treated as a figure of almost religious importance. At least they weren’t so extreme about it as the wizards of his youth had been.

    He spent a reflective half hour looking out over the shallow lapping waves as the hue of the sea slowly shifted and the large sun peaked over the horizon. Gradually the sky was flooded with a deep blue so like he’d known on Earth as a child. The distant glow of Gargantua faded to nothing more than a shadow in the cloudless early morning sky.

    He climbed to his feet again, the morning’s ritual completed, and knew it was now time to go to her. He fixed the image of his destination in his mind and twisted on the spot.

    As the only wizard on the planet when it was first colonised it was something he’d long been able to do. When humanity had been pushed so very close to the abyss it seemed stupid to remain fractured. Everyone knew his abilities and it only served to reinforce their semi-worship.

    He appeared near to the small hospital that had been established on the planet. It was a small affair but unquestionably the most modern aspect of all the colonisation efforts. Mostly prefabricated units assembled in the orbiting exodus stations overhead and brought down to be placed together.

    He walked through the automatic doors and straight up to the reception.

    “I’m here to see Amelia Potter,” he said to the young lady sitting there.

    “Of course, Dr. Potter,” she said with a sad smile. “She’s just made it back. She’s in the Brand Ward, room 7. Round to the left and down the corridor.”

    “Thanks,” said Harry. He nodded at her politely and made his way down the stark white corridors.

    He stopped outside the door and took a deep breath before pushing it open to greet the one he’d loved for more nearly two hundred years in his reckoning.

    She was as beautiful as she’d always been but time had taken its cruel toll on her health. Her dark hair had long given way to grey, deep brown had become shining silver. Her deep brown eyes were just as sharp as always and lit up when she saw him enter, as he was sure his did.

    “Harry,” she said through those amazing lips, lips turned up into the most wonderful soft smile he’d ever known. A smile that all too soon was to be consigned to memory, as all things were, in time.​

    Then there's a few other bits and pieces that barely even got to prologue stage. I wish I could write without having to sit down and type, then some of these stories might get done. Oh well.
     
  7. CheddarTrek

    CheddarTrek Set Phasers to Melt Moderator DLP Supporter

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    I have a 'dumping ground' area on ffnet for HP snippets. The one piece of advice I got when I started it a few years ago was to make sure all the stories in it had something tying them together, like a fandom.

    I.e. If you want to write drabbles for HP, SW, and Naruto... maybe make three places to put them, because nothing in common. If you want to write tons of HP crossovers in different fandoms, keep them together because Harry's existence is the common denominator.

    The idea being that people aren't likely to click if it's only every fourth chapter they might be interested in.
     
  8. Odran

    Odran Prisoner

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    I love the HP/SW and HP/ME crossovers. The other two? Not really interested in those.

    Any chance you might turn either of those first two crossovers into stories?

    Or will you be focusing on finishing what you got going on now (Shadows of Angmar)?
     
  9. Republic

    Republic The Snow Queen Prestige DLP Supporter

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    Steelbadger That HP/ME one was the only one that really drew me in, despite my deep dislike of FemShep. Chances of seeing more of it?
     
  10. Steelbadger

    Steelbadger High Inquisitor

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    I am currently focussing on Shadow of Angmar as I really want to at least get it to the end of arc one this year. To that end I have placed my other stories mostly on hiatus, excepting moments of inspiration, and am trying really hard not to pick up anything new.

    That said the HP/ME story is one that's been niggling at me for months and HP/SW is something I really want to do even if I'm not entirely sure at the moment how I'd continue the Dumbledore centric one. It's quite likely that I'll write more for them in future as Mass Effect and Star Wars are things to which I'm constantly being exposed (whereas AC and Interstellar were largely one-time deals after playing the game/watching the movie).

    So the answer, I suppose, is 'I hope so'.
     
  11. Steelbadger

    Steelbadger High Inquisitor

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    Right, so this evening was meant to be spent on Shadow of Angmar. However I happened to come across a reference to L-Space and a bunny plopped out.

    The Librarian​


    “Oook.”

    “Um, Hermione, why is there a monkey in the library?” said Harry as quietly as he could while he watched the orange furred animal swing contentedly between the many shelves.

    “Actually,” she responded quickly. “It’s an Orangutan. And it doesn’t like being called the M-word. It bounced Crabbe on his head for five minutes when it heard him talking about it.”

    Harry glanced at the Orangutan warily. “Right.”

    He waited for a moment before noticing that his friend had returned to the book she was reading and that he evidently wasn’t going to be getting an answer to his question.

    “Um, Hermione, why is there an Orangutan in the library?”

    She looked up again and rolled her eyes as if it should be obvious. “Oh, Harry. It makes sense really. Orangutans are natives of the jungles of Borneo and, well, the Library’s a bit like a jungle, isn’t it?”

    Harry thought this answer over for a minute while Hermione returned to her reading. He wasn’t sure why, but the answer seemed curiously lacking. He decided to raise his concern with Hermione.

    “But why is it here at all?”

    The book Hermione was reading snapped shut a little more loudly than necessary. “Well I should think that’s obvious. It’s the substitute Librarian while Madam Pince is recovering from Dragon Pox.”

    Harry nodded absentmindedly as there was a disturbance on the other side of the Library which prompted their new Librarian to swing off with an impressive speed. For an orange furred sack of potatoes it was actually pretty impressive.

    “But why a monkey?”

    “Orangutan, Harry.”

    “Why an Orangutan?”

    “Well look at it, Harry. Madam Pince couldn’t move that fast. And she certainly couldn’t bounce students on their heads when they defaced one of the books.” Hermione had always been a little fanatical about her books.

    The Orangutan returned to its vantage point near the middle of the library cradling a book in its leathery hands as if it was a child or piece of fine china.

    Harry gave up, it was Hogwarts; it didn’t need to make sense. He finally pulled out his Transfiguration homework and was about to set to work when Ron turned up, finally able to extricate himself from the food in the Great Hall.

    “Blimey, Harry, ‘1001 Reasons to Transfigure Your Nose Hair’? You don’t think that’s a bit specific?” Ron said by way of greeting.

    A chuckle escaped Harry when he looked at the cover of the book. Of course Hermione had already pre-selected their reading for this particular assignment. “Pity there’s no ‘How to Defeat a Dark Lord in Three Easy Steps’,” he said wryly.

    A deep brown leathery hand engulfed Harry’s own and he felt a book pushed into his palm.

    “Ook,” said the Librarian, seriously.

    “Barbarian Heroing for Absolute Beginners: How to Defeat a Dark Lord in Five Easy Steps by C.M.O.T. Dibbler,” said Harry as he looked at the book, incredulity leaking into his voice. He looked at the Librarian. “Is this for real?”

    “Ook,” said the Librarian.

    “Huh, well, thanks,” said Harry a little awkwardly. After a moment’s thought he reached down to his bag and handed the Orangutan the banana he’d picked up at lunch for a snack.

    “Ook!”

    “You’re welcome,” said Harry with a nod. He turned his rapt attention to the book. Whoever this ‘Cut Throat Dibbler’ was he clearly knew his stuff. As a result he wasn’t really paying attention when Ron broke his stunned silence.

    “Bloody hell, there’s a monkey in the library!”

    “Oook!”​
     
  12. Celestin

    Celestin Half-Blood Prince

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    Fearful Symmetry​


    "Sir," said a young witch. "Madam Bones says that everything is ready."

    He couldn't remember her name, but he was sure she had a Black blood in her. She had the same determined look he often saw on their faces, both as his allies and his enemies.

    "I'm ready," he said, but it was a lie. He didn't feel ready.

    Mostly he felt tired. Tired of living a life of eternal war.

    *

    Madam Bones was a third Bones to be the Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement. Or was it fourth? After a certain point in an immortal life it was very easy to start confusing various ancestors and descendants.

    “We managed to breach Hogwarts' protections, but it will only allow one person to enter,” she said.

    “It's fine,” he answered and started walking.

    It wasn't hard to guess that at the end it will be just two of them. Not when there was the Prophecy that almost said that much.

    As he was walking he looked at the castle.

    Unlike the rest of the world it was in a very good condition. Mostly because of an unspoken agreement between him and his enemy that they leave it in peace.

    It was the only place either of them would call home.

    The fact that he decided to finally use it for whatever plan he had, confirmed it was going to be their last battle.

    To his surprise, the possibility of that made him content.

    He finally saw his enemy.

    The worst Dark Lord in the history they called him, but the truth was that they didn't even remember if there were other Dark Lords in the past. For the current generation and few before them, the present was all that counted.

    The past was burned to ground and the future was just an empty promise that nobody could keep.

    He didn't change much since he last saw him in person few decades ago. Young as always with maybe a little more pale skin than back then, black hair and the infamous green eyes that right now were focused on him.

    "Hello, Tom."

    “Harry,” he greeted him.

    If only Dumbledore could see them now. The Chosen One becoming the Dark Lord and the Dark Lord becoming the Chosen One.

    He often wondered if anyone could predict it.

    Could he predict that using Potter's blood would not nullify the sacrificial protection of his mother, but instead move it to his person where in time it would heal his soul and teach him how to simply care?

    Could Dumbledore predict that without his mother's protection his Golden Boy would slowly be corrupted by the piece of the Dark Lord's soul he suspected was hidden in his scar?

    Maybe yes, maybe not. It didn't matter anymore.

    “I presume you intend it to be our last battle,” he said.

    “I never wanted to live forever, Tom,” said Harry. “But the thought that the world will keep on turning after I'm done is something that bothers me greatly. Makes me feel insignificant.”

    The existence trembled.

    “What did you do?”

    “There will be no fighting today, Tom,” said Harry. “Only the end.”

    In his last second of life Tom Marvolo Riddle, formerly known as Lord Voldemort, cast a spell. One that could save him even now because unlike his enemy, there was a time when he wanted to live forever.

    *

    He woke up.

    The initial disorientation was expected, but he managed to find his wand and cast a time spell.

    It was year 1996.

    Long time before Harry was corrupted and he started to fell remorse. Long time before their roles were reversed.

    He was already planning how to make sure his Death Eaters captured Harry this time around when his sense were finally getting used to the new body and he noticed something was amiss.

    His eyesight was still very blurry, but it wasn't any of his hideout.

    Did he pass out and his people brought him somewhere else?

    He noticed something on a nightstand.

    The round glasses.

    He put them and with a resigned sigh looked into the nearby mirror.

    “It would be just too easy, wouldn't it?” he asked a reflection of Harry Potter.


    AN: It's more of a plot bunny setup than anything else, but I wanted to quickly write something. In case you're wondering, future Harry is suppose to be back too in the other body.
     
  13. MonkeyEpoxy

    MonkeyEpoxy Alchemist

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    please sir, can I have some more?
     
  14. TacosRule

    TacosRule Squib

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    I freely admit this idea is incredibly stupid, but it lodged in my head anyway: a crossover (or a fusion 'fic) with Cromartie High School. For the uninitiated, it's a manga/anime about an ordinary Japanese high school student who gets transferred to a school full of juvenile delinquents. And a robot. And Freddie Mercury.

    So of course the idea is for Harry to end up at a school full of wizard delinquents. And a golem. And Freddie Mercury. (the latter two will not be appearing in this drabble. Probably!)

    ------------------------------------------------------

    Somewhere in a remote castle in Scotland, in a crowded classroom, Harry Potter began to wonder if perhaps some terrible mistake had been made. Hagrid had assured him that he would fit right in at Hogwarts. Looking at some of his classmates, Harry wasn't so sure. For the most part, they were much bigger than him (even some of the girls), and he'd heard the way they talked.

    Even now, if he strained himself, he could hear a few of his fellow Gryffindors comparing their school records before coming to Hogwarts. Apparently Seamus Finnegan used to be known as 'Fireball' at his old school, and it had nothing to do with his hair. Dean Thomas had never gotten a nickname, and that was judged to be uncool; Harry filed that away for future reference.

    Okay, Harry thought to himself, I'm surrounded by juvenile delinquents and...to be honest...I'm kind of freaking out now. Alright, that wasn't helping. Feeling even less confident than he did before sitting down, Harry began to root through his bag for his school things. He probably wasn't going to get murdered during the lesson, right? Unfortunately, his trembling fingers weren't quite working the way he wanted them to, and a quill clattered to the floor as he was pulling out a roll of parchment.

    The boy sitting next to him bent down to pick up the quill. He had closely-shaved hair and a neck that looked nearly as thick as one of Harry's legs. Harry vaguely recognized him from the train; he was one of Malfoy's goons. Crabbe or Goyle or something like that. To Harry's surprise, the boy straightened up and almost seemed as if he were holding the quill out for him to take.

    "Thank you very much," Harry said, unwilling to look a gift horse in the mouth. A tentative smile appeared on his face. Huh, he thought, maybe these guys aren't so bad after all.

    Crunch.

    Harry yelped with surprise. Rather than giving him the quill, Crabbegoyle had opened his mouth wide and tore it in half with a single bite. Harry could only stare as the other boy chewed and swallowed, then went back for another bite of the writing implement.

    He. Ate. My. Quill. Harry was far too stunned to do anything but stare, although his inner monologue was suspiciously high-pitched. He ate my quill!

    As if on autopilot, he dumped his bookbag out on the desk. Several more quills, a bottle of ink, an eraser, and a stack of index cards tumbled out. Without a word, Crabbegoyle swept the lot up and stuffed it into his cavernous mouth.

    That...that...that can't be normal. He ate all of them. Somehow, he couldn't force himself to look away from the sight of the other boy chewing and swallowing stationary as if it were delicious candy. These guys are not your run-of-the-mill delinquents.
     
  15. Celestin

    Celestin Half-Blood Prince

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    Muggles have a saying that if something can go wrong, it will. They may be on to something, thought Tom.

    Not only he did end up in the body of his worst enemy, but it was a beginning of a summer break. Two months before he could go back to Hogwarts and, unless he somehow managed to convince Potter's wand to stop resisting him, two months before he could find a replacement and do a proper magic.

    For now he could only amuse himself with some wandless tricks, like levitating rocks in a garden.

    "Wotcher, Harry," someone said near his ear.

    He would lie if he said she didn't startle him.

    Sure, he was aware of a Dumbledore's guardian being nearby, invisible and constantly vigilant. He just wasn't expecting them to actually try interacting with him.

    He looked at a smiling face that was a lot closer to his own that he found acceptable.

    What was her name again?

    She was a Black, that he could tell. Maybe a daughter of Andromeda that Bella mentioned few times? Unfortunately, he doubted he bothered to remember her name even back then. That left him with just one option.

    "What?" She asked, still smiling, after a moment of silence when all he did was staring into her eyes. "Do I have something on my face?"

    "Nothing, Tonks," he finally answered. "I was just wondering if it's a shade of emerald I see in your eyes today?"

    "What?" Her eyes widened a little and he could imagine that she checked how her body looked right now the way only Metamorphmagus could.

    Nymphadora Tonks was as he suspected a daughter of Andromeda Black. She was an Auror and a protégé of Mad-Eye which meant she was actually a competent with her work.

    She had also a small secret. Like most of a witches of her age, she had a big hero crush on the Boy Who Lived when she was a child. Of course once she got older, she realized how ridiculous it was, especially after she stopped ignoring their age difference.

    Then she actually met Harry Potter and after a while she started regretting he wasn't a little older.

    "It was probably just a light," he finally said.

    It was probably unfair of him to tease her about it, but she did startle him first.

    "What can I do for you?" he asked.

    "Well, I thought that you may want to simply talk with someone, anyone really, since you sure aren't with your relatives," she started. "But since you're asking so nicely then could you teach me this?"

    She pointed at the floating rocks.

    "This little trick?"

    "Maybe for people like you or Dumbledore," she said. "For as mere wizards and witches, a wandless magic can be more than a little tricky."

    "I suppose it can," he completely forgotten that future generations learned it not because they chose to, but because wands and wand making were almost non-existing thanks to the Purge.

    "Very well, but I want a favour in return," he said. "I want to visit the Diagon Alley."

    "I'm not sure if the Headmaster will agree," she said immediately. "It's not really safe right now."

    "I just want to go to few shops," he explained. "We'll be back before anyone realize I was there."

    "I suppose he may agree to a short trip."

    "Great," he said and walked back into the house. "I look forward to our date then."

    He closed the door.

    "Date?!" she half-screamed to herself, surprised and maybe just a little excited.

    In a hindsight women of the House of Black always had a tendency for falling for a wrong men.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2016
  16. James

    James Professor

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    At first I was like "nice drabble", and then

    Damn. Nice.
     
  17. Celestin

    Celestin Half-Blood Prince

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    Few more drabbles and I will be tempted to make something longer out of it. For now though another scene.


    Murphy's law.

    He finally remembered how Muggles called it when he saw a person that would go with him the Diagon Alley.

    "I trust you are doing well, Harry?"

    "Yes, Headmaster," he answered. "Tonks isn't going with us?"

    "Unfortunately, Miss Tonks was called to replace one of her colleagues who suddenly got sick," explained Dumbledore. "I hope you don't mind an old man like me as her replacement."

    "I'm not sure," said Tom. "Aren't you worried that people will talk? I can already see tomorrows headlines. Dumbledore and Potter together? The shocking truth about their relationship. Though if we avoid holding our hand in public and skip on eating ice cream, we should be able to avoid worst of the rumors."

    The Headmaster chuckled.

    "Now I understand why Miss Tonks was as much disappointed as she was," he said. "I'm glad you are trying to enjoy your life, Harry."

    That's Albus Dumbledore for you. You want to make him uncomfortable and he's just happy that you're happy. At least that's true when you're his golden boy. Tom didn't remember him ever being that jovial when they interacted with each other.

    "I must admit though, I was a little surprised when she told me about your mastery of a wandless magic," he continued. "Is it something you learned at your DA meetings?"

    This was a moment when Tom decided he will do something nice for Draco Malfoy when he's back at Hogwarts. Without his regular reports on Harry's action he would have no idea what the Headmaster was talking about right now.

    "No," he answered truthfully. He could lie, but he was sure that Dumbledore knew all that happened at the meetings. "I was doing some personal studies too. I would told you about them, but you were avoiding me."

    "Once again I'm sorry for that. I promise that this year I'll do my best to help you prepare for your upcoming battles," said the Headmaster and, as Tom hoped, dropped the topic for now. Fortunately he still felt bad about the whole situation.

    "Time to go then," said the Headmaster's and his eyes shined with an amusement. "Take my arm, Harry."

    It's going to be a long day, thought Tom.
     
  18. trollolol

    trollolol Third Year

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    Harry sat alone in his study in 12 Grimauld Place. He spun a seemingly unassuming stone between his fingers, thinking of a great man he used to know. Years ago, he had hid the stone in this house, hidden in a warded room that no one else could access. He had sworn to never use it. Today, he had returned out of desperation… Today he would use the stone. For the stone was much more than it appeared: gifted to him many years previously inside the very first, beautiful golden snitch he had ever caught, it had the power to raise the dead.

    'Albus Dumbledore.' Harry thought, spinning the stone thrice, feeling a little guilty all the while. 'Raising the dead is such a Voldemort thing to do.'

    A strange white mist was rising from the floor boards, swirling slowly outwards and eventually gaining some humanoid qualities. At first a foot, and then two, and then a leg…

    And then the noises came. Groans. Moans. Tears. Pain. 'The sounds of the dead?'

    Finally, before him materialised the closest thing to a grandfather he ever had, the former Headmaster of Hogwarts, Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore. A name Harry would never forget – he had named all four of his boys after him. He looked much the same as the last time Harry had seen him alive, but without the unpleasant dead flesh on his arm. The dead flesh he got acquiring this very stone from its previous owner – Lord Voldemort.

    "Harry?" he leaned over, looking pained. "Harry? Is that you?"

    "Hello Sir."

    And with that, a weak grin broke out on the Headmaster's face, although the pain from before still remained in the crinkling of his eyes.

    "From the look of you, you are a little old to be calling me Sir. Albus will do nicely, I think." He hummed, looking around at the tasteful green walls and finely polished dark brown furniture. "Fabulous job on the decour, if I might say so myself. Yes, absolutely delightful. Although I confess I always had a slight favour for Elder over Mahoganny." He said, tilting his head to the Elder Wand in Harry's hand.

    "You kept that old trinket, I see. And the cloak still?" He enquired.

    "Yes Sir."

    "Then it is I who should call you Sir, for you are the Master of Death!" He did not look at all pleased about that fact. "I am after all, quite dead. So Mr Potter, how may I be of service?" He said with yet another pained smile.

    "Voldemort is still alive. I did as you bid me and yet he still remains."

    "Yes. It is true. I waited to greet him, but he never came. No one can destroy a soul. He should have passed onto…Well, he should have passed on. So he must still live, somehow. Have you discovered how?"

    "No, although I have searched for years. I have read every book, even the foulest in your personal library, Albus." He said the name slowly, as if testing its sound on his tongue for the first time.

    "My boy… I am so sorry. I cannot help you: I am dead. It is not my role to interfere greatly with the living." Albus said, looking rather more apologetic now than displeased.

    "I can bring you back fully, Sir. We can defeat him together. It is within the power of the Stone, I can feel it."

    "My dear Harry… I can think of no greater punishment. I am so sorry. It is impossible to explain to one who still lives. I must not return. Please do not force me to."

    Harry looked down, looking miserable.

    Dumbledore sighed.

    "There is one who might possess the knowledge you require. His soul is damaged from a life of… misdeeds. A chance to help the living might allow him to heal. But it has never been done, Harry. The consequences would be entirely unpredictable. And the last thing you want is unpredictable… When it comes to Gellert Grindelwald."

    "Are you mad Sir? I will not resurrect a Dark Lord!"

    "At least speak to him, Harry. I give you my absolute guarantee he regrets what he did in life. You cannot hide the truth of these things when you are dead."

    'What he did… Or that he got caught?' Harry wondered, not wanting to get into an argument after forcing the man here against his will.

    "Very well Sir. I will speak with him. You may go. And Albus… It is good to see you again." He said, with a small smile.

    "Of course my dear man. It is a privilege to still be thought of. We will see each other again Harry; plenty of my incessant babbling and tom foolery awaits, I assure you!" He winked, and the mist broke apart, fading into nothing quickly.

    'This is a really bad idea.' Harry thought, as he reluctantly spun the stone to call forth Gellert Grindelwald.

    This time the man that appeared was extremely emaciated, bald and sickly. He was covered in liver spots and had vile, broken yellow teeth which had formed into a nasty grin. Harry rather suspected it was a representation of the soul, rather than the body he had in life.

    But the eyes were sharp, blue and piercing.

    "Who dares summon the dead?" he said in a dangerous, quiet voice.

    "Me." Harry answered, bitingly, tilting his head and deciding to stand and approach the man.

    "I have some questions for you. How you answer them will define how you spend the rest of eternity, do you understand?" Harry said, looking as antagonistically as possible into the former Dark Lord's eyes.

    "None but the Master of Death may command me." Grindelwald said, as he turned away, beginning to fade back into nothingness.

    Harry reached out and grabbed the man's shoulder. Yanking him back and mentally willing him to remain.

    "Then you had better listen very carefully, old man."

    Spinning back around with a snarl Grindelwald pushed him away "YOU? You… united… the hallows? When I could not?"

    "Shut your mouth and listen." He simply replied, already tiring of the despicable man's presence.

    A thoughtful look came over the older man's gaunt face. Suddenly, he sunk to his knees, and stared directly at the floor.

    "I live to serve… my Liege."

    'What? There's no way he expects me to believe that 360 turn around.'

    "…What?" Harry said.

    Looking up from the ground into Harry's eyes, Grindelwald had a look of terrible pain on his face.

    "I never thought I would have the chance… But… I could do at least some good... I wish to atone…Please. Tell me what to do, and it will be done… My Lord." He began quietly weeping, looking every bit a defeated man. Something about it felt quite fake to Harry, however.

    "I have no need of a servant. I am no Dark Lord. I need to know how Voldemort has beaten Death. In time I realised the power of the Resurrection Stone" – he held it before Grindelwald's eyes – "allowed me some awareness of the state of the soul. He has not torn it any further. So… Why didn't he die?" he growled. "I have a family now. Extended family. Extended extended family. For God's sake I'm absolutely done with living in fear!"

    There was a long, painful pause. Gellert appeared to be thinking, and Harry was happy to let him, as he slowly sunk back into his chair, looking quite a desperate and broken man.

    "To protect the sheep… you must catch the wolf. And it takes a wolf to catch a wolf… Do you understand?"

    "I am not bringing you back to life."

    A crooked grin and a clear view of rotting teeth was his response.

    "I am not bringing you back to life!"

    "Of course, Of course… Albus Dumbledore also has the skills required to kill the man you call Lord Voldemort. There are some others you might consider, if not him or I…I can think of a few who could challenge him in open warfare on even terms. Umeric the Evil. Ofsted the Vile. Alam the Inconceivable. Linus the Deceiver. Suat the Spiteful. Or Merlin I suppose." He cackled, looking up with wide, crazy eyes. "You are the Master of Death. I will do as you bid me. The decision is yours… Master." He looked back down, again quite calm.

    "I AM NOT BRINGING YOU BACK TO LIFE!"

    "Well... There is another way..." Grindelward said, with a glint in his eye.

    "I'm listening."

    "Become the wolf. My soul could move into the gaping chasm that is that hideous scar on your forehead. There is plenty of room in there for little old me."

    "NO! For fuck's sake I just need to know what methods he could have used to cheat Death, other than another Horcrux. So?"

    "Even if I tell you… You must find him wherever he's hiding - defeat him in a duel – and Kill him. You're not the sort for killing, I can tell. I will do what you cannot. You can stay and enjoy your time with your beautiful children." He nodded then, at the family photos covering the desk. "You need only command me and it will be done."

    Despite himself, Harry was sorely tempted.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2016
  19. Andrela

    Andrela Plot Bunny DLP Supporter

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    "The boy has awakened, Albus. It is time to change this."

    Dumbledore closed his eyes, holding back tears. He begged: "No, please, don't do this to him. He is so young."

    "Enough, Albus, don't embarrass yourself further."

    Harry opened his eyes.

    "Good afternoon, Harry," said Dumbledore with a weak smile.

    But Harry almost jumped out of his bed. "Sir! The Stone! It was Quirrell! He's got the Stone! Sir, quick-"

    "Professor Quirrell is dead, Harry," said the Headmaster, his tone of voice strangely sad.

    That stopped Harry and calmed him down.

    "Dead, sir? But, I-"

    "Yes Harry, you have killed Professor Quirrell and by doing so, you saved us all."

    Harry looked down on his hands.

    "But, how? What happened, sir?"

    There was conflict on Dumbledore's face, as if he was warring with himself to decide what to say next. Eventually though, he said:

    “When Voldemort came to kill you, your mother sacrificed her life to spare yours. In doing so, she granted you protection. That is why when Voldemort cast his Killing Curse at you, it turned on its caster. Your mother's love still lives on in you. When Professor Quirrell made contact with you, this love literally burned him like fire, he was doomed the moment he allowed his master to enter his body."

    "So he is really dead now," said Harry.

    "Yes. But you shouldn't blame yourself. Had he lived, he would have taken the Stone from you and restored Lord Voldemort to full power. It would lead to war and many lives would be lost," explained Dumbledore, though he seemed unwilling to do so.

    "There is just one more thing, sir. One thing I can't understand," Harry spoke.

    "Ask away, my boy and I shall do my best to explain."

    "Voldemort said that he only killed my mother because she tried to stop him from killing me. But why would he want to kill me in the first place?" asked Harry and immediately, something about Dumbledore changed.

    The old man stood up and turned away from Harry.

    "Tell him, Dumbledore! Tell him now!"

    Slowly turning around, with tears in his eyes, Dumbledore spoke: "Because of a Prophecy, Harry. A prophecy which claims that you and Voldemort are destined to kill one another."

    "Finally, Albus. Now we can begin his training. For the Greater Good."

    In canon, Dumbledore defeated Grindelwald and put him in prison. In this scenario, Grindelwald turned the Elder Wand into a Horcrux. In 1991, it finally has enough strength and hold over Dumbledore to begin influencing his actions
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2016
  20. Inert

    Inert Auror

    Joined:
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    San Diego or New York
    “Your invitations, gentlemen?” the door attendant prompted, the same warm smile fixed on her face that had greeted the dozens of witches and wizards that had entered before.

    They offered twin slips of ornate parchment to the pretty woman who checked them over with a quick wave of her wand. A light blue hue emanated from each as the wand passed over, and Harry exchanged a quick, wry glance with Ron – his intuition about the subtle enchantments on the invitations had been right, despite the lack of response to their diagnostic charms.

    “Ah, guests of Mr. Krum I see!” the attendant exclaimed, real excitement bleeding through her professionally courteous front. “Enjoy your evening, Mr. Dudley, Mr. Waslib.” She nodded to Harry and Ron in turn as they strode past and into the opulent entryway.

    Another attendant, this time a smartly dressed house-elf, took their coats and disappeared with nary a sound. Ron whistled lowly in appreciation. “Well trained little guy, isn’t he.”

    “I’m sure Hermione would be having a conniption if she was here.”

    Ron barked a laugh. “Mate, we’re rubbing shoulders with the ‘crème de la crème’ of Wizarding Europe all ‘cause you’re still friends with Krum. Most of these buggers are purebloods, and they’re all bloody rich. Pretty sure this is the most offensive situation she could dream of. She wouldn’t even know who to start blathering on about her progressive agenda to,” he said, a note of fondness for his wife’s antics in his voice.

    “And this is why I called you for the international sleuthing,” Harry returned as they entered a ballroom that put Hogwarts’ Great Hall to shame. Massive, floating chandeliers lit the room from above, enveloping the ballroom in a warm glow. Expansive glass doors and windows lined the left, right, and back side of the room, giving an uninterrupted view of the surrounding gardens that were bathed in the moonlight. Trays of champagne and various finger foods floated elegantly amidst the guests, navigating the moving witches and wizards with ease.

    “Merlin’s balls…” Ron breathed, taking it in. It occurred to Harry that his best friend had never been around this much in-your-face wealth since they had stormed Malfoy Manor all those years ago – and even then their thoughts hadn’t been on the décor. “This place just smells like money.”

    No, Harry thought. It smells like magic. He closed his eyes, inhaling deeply as the feel of hundreds of charms and enchantments washed over his senses. In his mind’s eye, he could nearly picture the floating chandeliers and trays amidst the dozens of glamour charms that the room’s two hundred occupants sported. It was like having a taste of being back at Hogwarts, a place so saturated with magic that he couldn’t help but feel at home.

    He opened his eyes, a small smile splitting his lips just in time to greet a duo that had just approached him and Ron.

    “The men of the hour!” Victor Krum exclaimed. He shook Ron’s hand vigorously before turning to Harry and doing the same, leaving him feeling like his hand had just been in a vice. “Ronald, Vernon, may I introduce my fiancée: Irena Ivanovic. Irena, these are Ronald Waslib and Vernon Dudley, the English preduzetnici I mentioned.” Harry noted with some appreciation that he didn’t stumble at all over his and Ron’s aliases.

    Irena smiled widely, showing perfect teeth as she extended her right hand to both Harry and Ron. “A pleasure,” she said in English tinged with a strong Eastern-European accent. “Victor has told me that you are very successful – how do you say – entrepreneurs back in Britain, yes?” Her smile widened as she pronounced the difficult English word correctly, and she glanced at Victor briefly to share a proud smile.

    They made quite the pair, Harry mused. She was undeniably gorgeous, standing just an inch or two shorter than Harry and elegantly draped in a deep maroon evening gown, her brown hair cascading in waves down her back. Victor was no less well-dressed, sporting a matching set of athletically tailored maroon dress robes accentuated by a fine pair of dragonhide gloves. The formally surly looking Bulgarian was clearly in his element standing next to his fiancée, an adoring smile on his face.

    He was going to owe the Quidditch star for a long time for risking his neck and getting them into the party. All the more reason to make tonight count.

    “Entrepreneurs, yes,” Ron said easily as Harry pulled himself out of his musings. “We’re the principle owners of a chain of joke-shops around Britain.” It wasn’t exactly a lie, and the best covers were the ones with at least a hint of truth in them.

    “I met Vernon and Ronald during my time at Hogwarts for the Tri-Wizard Tournament,” Krum explained.

    Irena’s eyes lit up in recognition and she laid a hand on Victor’s arm gently, shooting him a sympathetic glance before turning back to Harry and Ron. “If you were at Hogwarts back then, you must know Harry Potter, no?”

    Victor stiffened by her side while Ron did his best to not choke on air. Harry grinned, long since used to international witches and wizards asking after him while he was undercover. “Only by reputation, I’m afraid,” he said wryly, snatching the pretty witch’s attention before she could become too confused at the other two men’s reactions. “Potter always kept to himself back in school; had a bit of an aura of mystery about him. Been told I look a bit like him, actually.”

    Irena looked him up and down and Harry managed to contain his amusement at being able to so effortlessly blend in in places that weren’t England. Most of the pictures of him that had been circulated were at least six years old if not more. It was amazing what contact lenses, a decent haircut, and a bit of makeup covering his scar could do.

    A brief moment of eye contact confirmed it. She suspected nothing, for she had no reason to.

    Harry gently withdrew himself from her surface thoughts as Victor laid a hand on his fiancée’s shoulder. “Irena, would you mind giving me a few moments with my English friends? I promised to introduce them to a few of my business – ah – associates while they were here…” Krum said in mostly flawless English. He had improved dramatically in the years since the Tournament.

    Irena nodded neutrally and shot Harry and Ron a winning smile. “Victor mentioned that you were looking for investors on the continent,” she said. She pecked the Quidditch star on the cheek quickly, before, “I wish you luck, but I expect with Victor’s connections you won’t need too much.” Bidding them a good night, she wandered off elegantly into the rest of the party.

    Nodding seriously to Krum and Ron, Harry surreptitiously withdrew his wand from a pocket in space and cast a quick variant of the Muffliato he had developed. “I can’t thank you enough for your help, Victor,” he said. “I understand the personal risk of getting us in here tonight.”

    Krum waved him off dismissively. “It is nothing, Harry. If what you say is true, I am happy to help find these criminals of yours.” An ugly look passed over his face. “Men like them should find no shelter here.”

    “So how are we finding them, exactly?” Ron interjected. “You said before that most of the guests would be under some degree of glamour charm. How’re we supposed to pick ‘em out?”

    Harry nodded. “That’s where this gets a bit hairy. Victor, I’d suggest getting back to your fiancée. You’ve done more than enough getting me and Ron in here tonight, and I expect we’ll be under fire before too long.”

    The words had barely left his mouth before Krum was shaking his head vehemently. “You cannot expect me to leave you in the presence of these men without offering my wand as support, Harry. I vill not stand for it!” he exclaimed, his accent bleeding through in his displeasure.

    “And I cannot ask you to assume any more risk tonight, Victor,” Harry countered swiftly. “You’ve already put yourself in harm’s way simply by getting us in.”

    “If it is so, I haff already been compromised. I vill not incur their wrath any more should I assist you directly.”

    “Your fiancée—”

    “Can take care of herself, I assure you,” Krum interrupted easily. He grinned toothily. “You think, Harry, that I vould marry a woman incapable of defending herself? I see that we must reacquaint ourselves, it seems you do not know me at all.”

    Harry sighed in frustration, glancing at Ron who was grinning from ear to ear at the back and forth. Some partner he is, he mentally groused as the redhead shrugged in his direction.

    “Even so, these are highly skilled dark wizards with years of experience. They won’t hesitate to use lethal spells,” Harry warned, but he recognized a lost cause when he saw one.

    Krum didn’t disappoint: “Then I vill not hesitate to do the same,” he said savagely, eyes flashing menacingly. “I vos not Triwizard Champion for nothing.”

    Harry didn’t doubt it. Durmstrang was known for focusing far more on the Dark Arts than any of the other premier magical schools in the world, and Krum had been the best of his year by a large margin. Harry nodded curtly, accepting defeat. “Fair enough. We’re looking at an unfavorable situation from the get-go, unfortunately,” he said, becoming all business. “The one known entity is Antonin Dolohov; former Death Eater, one of Voldemort’s best wands. He specializes in Eastern European and Russian dark curses. Highly skilled, he once out-dueled Mad-eye Moody.”

    Ron looked at him meaningfully and Harry carefully kept his face neutral. His best friend knew that this was more personal for Harry than most other Death Eaters, but he wasn’t about to step in; not at this stage of the operation.

    “The others?” Krum prompted.

    Harry shook his head. “Mostly unknown. We know Dolohov is meeting a contact here, but other than that the number of people we might be up against is up in the air. Stay vigilant, though. I was tracking Death Eater activity in Paris and somehow stumbled onto a four man team that threw me off the trail.”

    “And we still don’t know who they were,” Ron reiterated, frustration coloring his voice at the supposed dead end. Harry, for his part, had his suspicions. They were, however, extremely concerning in regards to the true scope of this conspiracy.

    “Whoever they were, they were highly efficient and extremely competent, so be on your guard.”

    Krum nodded. “So how are ve supposed to find this Dolohov? Ronald vas correct; most of the guests are under glamour charms, he will likely be as vell.”

    “I’ve already found him,” Harry replied, turning his head toward one of the balconies where multiple men were chatting. Krum’s eyes widened as he turned to look at the balcony while Ron turned to him with a wry grin.

    “Another one of those little secrets you can’t explain, eh, mate?” he chuckled, shaking his head. “I’m starting to see why you called me. Hermione would be bloody cross with you right about now if she were here.”

    Harry snorted. “Something like that, yeah.” He had talked to Hermione about his growing ability to feel the magic around him more than once, something that frustrated his studious friend to no end. There was very little written on the subject, apparently, and Hermione hated not knowing about something she was curious about.

    The more Harry looked into on his own, and the more he consulted Dumbledore’s notes and portrait, the more he began to realize that it was one of those abilities that was intuitive to some wizards and impossible for others to grasp. For whatever reason, and he certainly couldn’t place it, he had some measure of understanding of magic that went beyond the average wizard’s. He was past the point of questioning it these days, and simply thanked whatever lucky stars that seemed to be shining on him that it proved to be more and more useful the older he got.

    Though in this case, he was unsure if it was more to do with that complicated understanding he had or with his intimate familiarity with Voldemort’s magic. The Dark Mark was a spell of Voldemort’s own creation and had the Dark Lord’s proverbial fingerprints all over it. After spending the better part of seventeen years sharing headspace with a sliver of Riddle’s soul, Harry was likely more familiar with the feel of the man’s magic than anyone other than Dumbledore or Voldemort himself had been.

    Polluted, angry, and stronger than tempered steel, the Dark Lord’s imprint on Dolohov’s arm was like a beacon to Harry. Unbidden, his lip curled and he forced his mind blank for a moment to control the impulse to lash out and obliterate the veritable stain that was assaulting his senses.

    “How do we proceed?” Krum asked quietly. His wand had made its way into his hand in anticipation.

    “The alias I gave you is a known alias of mine. If Dolohov is as well connected as I think he is, he’ll have known I was coming the second he saw the guest list.”

    Krum whirled on Harry, expression incredulous. “He’s expecting you?” At Harry’s curt nod the Quidditch star barked a laugh. “You are bold, Harry Potter. You haff my approval.”

    Ron shook his head sardonically. “Letting him set a trap for you. Classic Harry…” He snorted. “Next move?” he asked, grinning widely at an old joke from their days in the Auror academy.

    Harry returned it eagerly. “Spring the trap!”

    Ron clapped him on the back before turning to Victor. “Harry’s gonna lead on this one. You take the west side of the opening, I’ll take the east. When he makes contact, we seal the exit and deal with any backup that might be coming his way.”

    Krum nodded in acceptance of the plan as Harry smiled at his best friend’s intuitive grasp of his tactics. Ron knew well and good that Harry could handle his business and would let him, but was still making sure he’d be within striking distance if anything went pear-shaped.

    “Make one loop of the room, clockwise, and take up your positions on either side when you’ve reached the opening,” Harry instructed. “In the event this gets messy, the priority is Dolohov’s contact; alive if possible.” The barrier of death wasn’t actually all that much of a hindrance, but he Harry preferred to avoid dead bodies if at all possible.

    Krum and Ron both nodded and began their loop, Ron shooting him last meaningful look. ‘Give him hell’ Harry read in his best friend’s eyes.

    He snatched a champagne flute from a nearby floating tray, idly transfiguring the liquid into sparkling, wine colored water before taking a sip. It was unlikely that the drink had anything in it, but being cautious was always the better part of valor. Taking a sip, he meandered in the direction of the balcony.

    Six men, he counted. The man Harry had pegged as Dolohov was speaking to someone who’s face Harry couldn’t make out from his position at the far end of the balcony, plus four others scattered around the balcony in various states of conversation.

    Making his way through the high, glass double doors, he saw Victor and Ron take up positions on either side of the entryway. No sooner had he stepped through did the doors suddenly slam closed with a resounding BANG. A jet of black light swiftly impacted the top of the door-jam causing the stone above the door to melt down and cover the way out. All sounds of surprise that had erupted at the sudden closing of the balcony doors came to an abrupt halt.

    “Harry Potter,” a man said in a thick Easter European accent as his glamour charm faded to reveal the twisted face of Antonin Dolohov. The Death Eater snarled, baring his teeth in a savage grin. “You are a bold one.”

    Eleven inches of holly and phoenix feather appeared in Harry’s hand as he called his wand from a pocket in space. Green eyes surveyed the four men who had been scattered around the balcony as they fanned out to surround him. It was much the same as it had been in Paris; there was no doubt in his mind that these men were just as dangerous as the team that had tried to apprehend him in Paris had been – only now he had Antonin Dolohov and an unknown to deal with as well.

    That wasn’t about to stop him.

    “Antonin Dolohov, you’re responsible for the deaths of Reums Lupin and Nymphadora Tonks,” he bit out, palpable rage coloring his voice. “They were friends of mine.”

    “Not a courtesy call, then,” Dolohov taunted. “This, however, isn’t Britain, Potter. You have no jurisdiction here, no backup. And whatever magics protected you from the Dark Lord do not scare me. Avada Kedavra!

    Holly and phoenix feather snapped to attention, conjuring a solid block of obsidian in the killing curse’s path. The stone exploded on impact and Harry moved swiftly, banishing the shrapnel back toward Dolohov and his contact while simultaneously dropping to the ground to avoid a hail of curses the four other men unleashed the moment he had thwarted the killing curse.

    Focusing intently, Harry pointed his wand at the floor before twirling it upward. Rise! he silently commanded, and the thick stone that comprised the balcony folded upwards before rushing at Dolohov and the unknown wizard in a rippling wave. The two wizards were immediately knocked from their feet, and Harry shot twin sets of conjured ropes at their prone forms before transitioning conjuring a Dueler’s Shield in the shape of a dome around his still crouched form. Three spells impacted the shield, dispersing into brilliant white lights with to the sound of cannons firing, but a cutting curse slipped through before it was fully formed and nicked Harry on his left shoulder.

    Hissing in pain, Harry waved his wand over the wound and the skin knit back together accompanied by the sound of a zipper. It was for naught, though, as the scar immediately reopened, bleeding profusely. Dark Cutter, lovely, he thought.

    Pushing the wound from his mind, he swept his wand outward and turned his Dueler’s Shield into an offensive wave of kinetic force. The rippling wave caught the four men in the chest, knocking them to the ground. Not wasting a second, mind focused intently, Harry summoned a Stun Whip. The deep red stream of energy snapped out four times in quick succession, tagging each of the four downed men before they could properly recover.

    Conjuring a piece of cloth, he charmed it to wrap around his left shoulder as he rose, facing Dolohov and his companion once more. The Russian wizard was on his feet, looking none the worse for wear after having been knocked around by Harry’s magic – the mysterious contact was much the same, much to Harry’s consternation, if not surprise.

    “You have finally lived up to the hype, I see,” Dolohov said quietly, his earlier bravado replaced by a calculating mien.



    /~/


    More coming soon. Blasted that 3000ish words out the last day or two then got stuck. Hope it's enjoyable.