One-shot, songfic! The summer after his fifth year, Harry fears the darkness inside himself... (Book 5 SPOILERS, but not necessarily compliant with Book 6)
NOTES: Well, it's Halloween, and while this isn't some scary macabre story with death and monsters and stuff, it might still be scary in a way, at least to Harry.
WARNING: Book 5 spoilers, but I wouldn't call it compatible with Book 6. Takes place mid-July between Year 5 and Year 6.
Dedicated to YamiPaladinofChaos, with whom I once discussed the idea of a songfic based on this song, and whose fic "Dark Rage" was a small inspiration for this.
It was a muggy night in mid-July, and only one person was home at Privet Drive.
In his room, Harry Potter was practicing Occlumency. So far, Voldemort had not tried to take over Harry's mind again. Harry reasoned that maybe it was because he was learning more proficiently without Snape's so-called "teaching" methods, or Voldemort was trying to lure Harry into a sense of false security, or maybe he couldn't bear to be in Harry's mind again.
Love. According to Dumbledore, that was what drove Voldemort back and beat him. Harry found it hard to believe that such an emotion like love could actually do that. Unless what that meant was that loving Voldemort (/As if anyone could do that!/ Harry thought sarcastically) could defeat him, Harry didn't see it being possible.
Before Voldemort neutralized the blood protection at the end of his fourth year, Harry was also immune to that sort of physical contact. Maybe now, since he had warded of Voldemort in such a way, he had immunity from possession too?
But even if that self-proclaimed Dark Lord had not possessed him since, let alone tried, he felt something else stirring within him, deep within his soul...
He felt hatred, he felt fear, he felt doubt...
Harry felt as though they were all combined into this small flame that had been ignited, which he felt ever since he had tried to use the Cruciatus Curse...
No! Don't even think about it!
But it was too late, and Harry knew for a fact that it was there.
I am words, I am speaking
I never heard my conclusion
Lost the way in my confusion, in illusion
Lost inside the picture frame
Harry couldn't pinpoint exactly where this darkness was within him, but he could certainly feel its effects.
Was this how Voldemort felt on the beginning of his long and dark path to evil? Succumbing to this dark desire like an addiction?
Because Harry could almost hear that little voice of darkness, like something whispering in his ear, never going away.
Take control, it said. Take revenge. Make your aggressors suffer. Take away what's most dear to them the same way they have done to you. Fix things as you see fit. You can do it.
And it truly scared Harry on some level that he would want to listen to that sinister little voice, even though deep within his heart, he truly didn't want to.
His worst memories of the previous year came flooding back to him... then those of all his time at Hogwarts... even all those from his pre-Hogwarts life when he suffered at the hands of the Dursleys like he used to...
I'm not to blame, I didn't see the black flame
I'm not ashamed, its poetry, the black flame
I'm rearranged, it's changing me, the black flame
Burns my blackened brain
Harry couldn't stay around any longer. He had to get out there.
Collecting his jacket and wand, he hastily scribbled out a note for the Dursleys (who were out at some sort of special dinner with some wealthy person who had connections) and left the house, taking the absolute minimum amount of time to shut off the lights and lock the door behind him.
He had to move. Even if he couldn't escape this small darkness within him, he just had to move, and least give himself the feeling that he just might be able to flee from it. Maybe if he just moved around a little and got his brain more motivated as well, he could figure something out...
I am strong, I am leaving
I never knew I'd feel the need so
Where to go, I'll turn the flow, I could not know
Screams inside the burning pain
He passed the place where he first met Sirius a few years back in Magnolia Crescent...
DON'T THINK ABOUT IT! he mentally warned himself, trying to prevent some surge of emotions from affecting him.
Memories of his death and his subsequent attack on Bellatrix Lestrange came flooding back to mind... oh, how he would be in trouble if that ever came out... all that time, trying to prove he wasn't evil, unbalanced or crazy, only to actually perform a Dark spell, an Unforgivable Spell, no less...
It's spinning head, it's under hand - the black flame
It lies instead, I turned and I ran - the black flame
On me, it fed, I understand - the black flame
Burns my blackened brain
Now Harry was breaking into a run, just anxious to get away, hoping that he might somehow be able to remove this darker side of himself, one way or another...
Run from me, don't you see
That we are one and I'm a part of you
Get away, any way
I'm still a secret in the heart of you
And I'm the burning in your soul
He had just reached the playground where he had been before he was attacked by those dementors the previous summer when his pace suddenly slowed down, and stopped after a few more steps.
Harry really couldn't escape from it after all.
The old saying about how "each man is his own worst enemy" came to mind, and Harry bitterly shook his head after contemplating that. He had defeated Voldemort many times, and probably could defeat him, thereby fulfilling that blasted prophecy. But even then, if he won, he would still be a blasted hero, a /symbol/, for the Wizarding World. Even with Voldemort finally gone for good, he'd still have to contend with that inner demon. Whether it was that small piece of Voldemort which existed inside him or just his "Dark Side" which everyone had within them, or both so tightly merged together that he couldn't tell where one ended and the other began, Harry just couldn't bear this anymore.
It was times like these when he just hated being himself, and more recently, even to the point that he wished he didn't exist.
Now I'm weak, I am losing
I never thought I'd stop trying
I'm a lie, I'm just a sigh, just a crying
Just a symbol of the game
Harry may have been a brave Gryffindor, but he also felt those clever Slytherin undercurrents within himself. Anxious for a way to get out of the problem by avoiding it rather than confronting it.
He felt he could never be free from this internal problem, this plague, this curse. He could not even think straight because of it. He did not want to live like this.
His wand was there in his pocket, almost as if calling him to be used to find some escape or release from it all... he reached into his pocket and took hold of it...
Suspended pain, I can not face the black flame
Intended fear, I can not trace the black flame
Extended reaching into space - the black flame
Burns my blackened brain
If Harry was surprised to hear that voice, he didn't show it; in fact, he wasn't even sure if he was surprised at all.
Albus Dumbledore had somehow managed to appear behind him a few meters away. Walking up to his student now, the Headmaster of Hogwarts was carefully thinking about he wanted to say.
How nice of you to come along in person, Harry thought somewhat snidely.
"Headmaster," he said, taking his hand back out of his pocket but leaving his wand there.
"I came because I wanted to tell you something in person, but once I saw that the wards around Privet Drive had been breached, indicating that you had left, I decided to come myself."
"I decided to go for a walk," Harry said stiffly.
"I see," Dumbledore said, almost as though he believed it, although Harry couldn't be quite sure of that. "Anyway, I came to inform you that Madam Umbridge will be put in trial sometime during the first week of August to answer for her deeds during her reign as Headmistress."
"Not that I don't appreciate the visit, but I don't see why you would come in person to tell me this," Harry said, finally turning around to face the man which he still considered to be his mentor.
"Very perceptive, Harry," Dumbledore said modestly. "I came to apologize in person for what I did - or did not do - last year. You are well within your rights to be angry with me."
Harry could sense the sincerity and honesty in his voice. "I understand," he said quietly as a way of accepting that apology. "It's not so much anger at you anymore... more with what happened."
"Very wise indeed. I think we both needed to be reminded last year about what I feel is one very important principle."
"What would that be?"
"Some things should be avoided, while others should be confronted."
Harry couldn't help but wonder if Dumbledore had managed to read his mind or at least sense it somehow.
"I know that you feel anger, resentment and fear deep within you, Harry... and you want to get rid of it. In my personal experience, no one can ever truly remove those feelings. The idea is not to remove them, at least not altogether, but to rise above them and use them as an example of what to avoid. Such as how one cannot know what good is without knowing what evil is, thus knowing to choose good over evil, the same could be said for those emotions.
"Voldemort may have caved into those emotions years ago, but you have proven yourself far better at confronting those emotions, even under considerably stressful circumstances. I cannot say the same for many other people that I know, and I know lots of people."
Harry was touched on some level by Dumbledore's words, which were free of flattery yet full of truth.
"If you need to talk to me about anything Harry, please don't hesitate to do so. I'm sure neither of us desire to repeat any mistakes from last year... or make entirely new mistakes, for that matter."
Just being able to reciprocate with Dumbledore in a civil manner again eased his troubled mind and soul in a way he couldn't describe. It was only later when he thought about it that his dark feelings had subsided.
"I also wanted to let you know that thanks to recent magical advancements, the wards around Privet Drive can be strengthened so you don't have to stay there as long this summer. In fact, you need only to remain there a few more days before you can relocate to Grimmauld Place."
Harry actually genuinely smiled for the first time since he had returned to the Dursleys' house for the summer. "That's great, sir."
"Speaking of which... I think it may be best if we return there now before something happens."
With that, they both left.
A/N: So, how was that? It may not be "horror" like most other things in that genre, but on a personal level for Harry, it might. I'll let you all draw your own conclusions on what this might mean for Harry. Oh, and Happy Halloween! -Quillian