Harry grapples with a Graphorn. (Ha, see what I did there?)
Battle with the Graphorn
"Why does this ALWAYS happen to me?" repeated Harry.
The creature was not immensely large, but certainly big enough to pose a significant threat to the small group; perhaps the size of around four horses. Its grayish purple skin curved over a humped back, and it walked around on strange feet that seemed to comprise of four thumbs. The most intimidating aspect of its features, however, was revealed when the beast turned to the side, allowing Harry to glimpse two large golden horns.
"Ooh, it's a Graphorn, Harry."
"I don't give a damn WHAT it is, Luna, it's keeping me from getting back home, so it needs to die."
He instructed his Reds to drop the spell stone, and was preparing to break cover and attack the Graphorn, when Luna piped up again. "Before you go killing, Harry, I thought it prudent to mention that Graphorn hide is rather resistant to magic. So your Reds will probably be rather ineffective, as will your own magic."
Harry huffed in frustration. He currently had only seven Brown Minions left thanks to the Erklings from before, not nearly enough to take on the huge beast in front of him. "If I might make a suggestion, Master," commented Gnarl, "if you can get your Minions up on the Graphorn's back, they can deal even more damage."
"Oh, what a clever suggestion, Gnarl!" Harry heard Gnarl begin crooning following Luna's exclamation, and he allowed himself a brief grin. "Do be careful, though, Harry. Graphorns are notoriously territorial and vicious. It'd be hard to get behind it without some sort of distraction."
Looking toward the Netherworld Portal, an idea struck Harry. If he could keep the beast's attention toward the Portal, it'd be a simple matter for his Reds and Browns to rush it from behind. Hopefully, they'd be able to hold on long enough to kill it, and Harry's bad day would be over. But to do that, he'd need a sacrifice of sorts.
Concentrating on the Brown Minion gate by the Netherworld, he summoned three Browns. Their sudden appearance startled the Graphorn, and it reacted just as Harry had expected, bellowing viciously at the new Minions seconds after they hit the ground. As they flew backwards from the force of the roar, Harry commanded the rest of his Minions to attack. Swiftly, they all jumped on the beast's back, ripping into its tough hide with clubs and fire-enhanced claws. The Graphorn bellowed in pain, trying desperately to remove its unseen attackers. It bucked up and down, successfully dislodging a few Reds, but the others managed to hold on, continuing to gouge large gashes in its back. Just when Harry thought that victory was assured, the Graphorn rolled over on its back, squashing the Minions underneath it, and it bounded off a short ways, breathing heavily. Luckily, the ground was soft, and most of the Minions seemed alive, but dazed and unable to fight.
The Graphorn gave another shout, and Harry cursed. If the Minions all died, he'd be practically defenseless against the creature. As it staggered towards his fallen Minions, Harry broke cover, blasting a fireball at its head, hoping to end the fight in one blow. The impact jerked the Graphorn's head to the side, and Harry could smell burning fur, but it seemed its resistance to magic had protected it from the majority of its destructive power. And now its attention was focused solely on Harry.
The Graphorn lumbered at Harry, swinging its horns back and forth. If they hit Harry, he would certainly be heavily wounded, if not killed outright. As it bounded closer, Harry took a mighty swing with his sword, attempting to stab the Graphorn in the head, but its horns took the brunt of the attack, and Harry went spinning, falling to the ground, narrowly avoiding being impaled. He barely rolled out of the way of another swing of the horns, and as the beast took another pass at him, Harry thought for sure he was dead right then and there. At the last second, a small group of Minions jumped in front of him; their bodies changed the trajectory of the horns enough so that Harry was only grazed rather than impaled, but the blow still knocked the wind out of him.
Stars danced in front of his face when he heard Luna yell in his ear, "Magic, Harry, use magic! Something powerful!"
Something… powerful? Thinking about the sharp sword in his hand, Harry swung it, yelling the first spell that came to his mind. "SECTUMSEMPRA!"
Harry felt a spray of hot liquid splash against his slightly exposed face, and heard the Graphorn roar in pain. He quickly rolled out of the way, hoping to avoid being trampled, then stood up. The Graphorn was stumbling around directionless, and it was easy to see why; gashes covered its entire face, its eyes punctured, with blood flowing freely. The two horns had also been chopped off, the combination of spell and sword having cut through them like a hot knife through butter. Looking at the sword, Harry noticed that a faint green aura was quickly fading from existence. It seemed that he had the ability to channel his spells into the sword, as well as through it, and could change its properties by doing so. If using Sectumsempra increased the sharpness of the blade by that much… well, he was certainly looking forward to trying out other combinations.
Finally, the Graphorn tumbled to the ground, attempting fruitlessly to get back up. Rage flowing through his veins, Harry strode up to the now pitiful creature, slicing its throat with a grunt, the blood spraying all over him. He raised his gauntleted hand up into his field of vision, closing it roughly, reveling in the power he felt. No longer was he powerless against Voldemort and his goons. No. Now he could bring the fight to them, and they would know the true meaning of fear.
"Oh, well done, Master!" Gnarl's exclamation brought him back to the present. "Now grab that spell stone and let's get out of there before something REALLY bad shows up. Like a dragon."
Harry nodded, briefly taking account of his Minions as he sent them to pick up the stone. He'd lost nine Minions in the fight: three Brown, six Reds. What a waste. Speaking of waste, it seemed a shame to allow the Graphorn to just decompose out in the wild. "Hey Gnarl, do you think we can put this corpse to good use? Its hide is magic-resistant, after all."
"Hmm… I don't see why not. The horns we can definitely use to add to our treasury – they'll fetch a fine price on the black market. And we might be able to turn that hide into some useful clothes for you for when you must mingle with the commoners in secret. Likewise for your Mistress."
Luna giggled, and Harry replied, "Actually, maybe you could just put those horns up on display. I have a feeling you won't ever have to worry about gold once you learn what's in my account at Gringott's Bank."
He summoned another ten Brown Minions to help carry the carcass of the Graphorn into the Netherworld, as Luna said. "After your very manly actions today, Harry, I think you quite deserve a reward, don't you agree?" Suddenly, Harry was very eager to get back, shoving the Minions out of the way so that he could travel back first.
Being Evil certainly had its perks, and he planned to take advantage of each and every one.
So, Harry has discovered another little power by combining his spells with his sword. This idea really just came out of the blue during this chapter, but I think it makes sense. Let me know your ideas for possible combination with other spells, for example, Incendio causing the sword to become covered in flames, or Finite Incantatum causing any spell that contacts the sword to fizzle out. Review and leave me your ideas, and I'll love you forever.