"A hero is he who sees responsibility in power. A traitor is one who thinks power is possible, without responsibility."
Anyway, here's my First Chapter, revitalized by my beta, with some things changed, and overall much better.
Please, anyone who reads this, review, and you will receive my eternal gratitude. In fact, by READING it you already did it, so fulfill your life's job, and give feedback. :-)
1. Peace at its End
As the stars studded the middle of the night, an owl descended from the dark sky. It had its magnificent wings spread out wide, to catch more of the updrafts that circulated the sleeping streets of Little Whinging. The image of a flying owl in the middle of the night would have seemed quite normal if only it had been holding a mouse, and not the square object it was holding now. It was a letter, addressed to a certain 'Harry Potter', located in the smallest bedroom.
The white owl flew down softly towards a window that seemed perfectly normal. In fact, the entire neighbourhood seemed dull and normal, and no house seemed any different from the rest. But appearances can be deceiving, as there was something quite unique about this particular home. Someone peculiar lived beyond its doors, and the person in question was just beyond that window.
The owl let out a sharp hoot, and immediately a light was switched on inside the house. A soft whisper reached the white bird, and the window opened softly. With another flutter of itswings, the owl was inside, and the window was quickly closed again. Peace took over the boring street once more.
Harry Potter sat on his bed with Hedwig, his white owl. She hooted softly, dropped the letter she was holding into the boy's hands, and flew over to her corner. Harry smiled slightly. The beautiful bird had brought him a letter from Albus Dumbledore, his headmaster at Hogwarts. He knew that the letter would not be any fun to read, but still, hearing from the old man was always interesting. He tried to open the letter as silently as possible, mainly because he did not want to raise any suspicion or else the Dursleys would come running. Out of the small envelope fell a piece of parchment, seemingly without any words. Harry rolled his eyes and grabbed his wand from the table next to his bed.
"I solemnly swear that I am up to no good," he muttered, while touching the paper with his wand. A small light appeared on the spot where the wand hit the parchment.
Immediately words began appearing on the empty paper, some faster than others, as if the less pleasant ones were reluctant to show themselves. When the letter had fully formed, he read the first lines.
'When this message reaches you, you might be sleeping, eating, or doing something else that is pleasant. I would suggest abandoning it, and first read this letter fully, as the news we have is quite disturbing.' The last word was shimmering slightly.
Harry flinched. This was either a warning that Voldemort was still attacking his mind, and that he should practice Occlumency, or a letter telling him someone had died. He decided, trying to push back the shivers that were threatening to take over his body, that he should follow his headmaster's advice, and quickly he read on.
/'Alastor Moody has sent me a most disturbing report regarding Death Eater activity. It seems Voldemort,' /the word was vague and seemed to be trying very hard to disappear/, 'and his minions are plotting an attack on Little Whinging, among a few other places. We do not believe he knows you live there, and that it is only a coincidence that the town has been designated as a target. We could, however, be wrong and I could never forgive myself if I didn't take necessary precautions. However, this does not mean you are out of danger/.'
Harry gulped. If Death Eaters were coming to his town, they surely wouldn't just walk around a bit, yelling at Muggles. Most likely half the town was going to be wrecked afterwards, which would mean there could be a chance the Death Eaters would attack this particular house, even if they were not here for Harry in the first place. He quickly skimmed the last part of the letter.
'We think you might be in immediate danger so we are going to pick you up in three days, using a Portkey. We will be coming at noon. Make sure you are prepared to leave for Headquarters immediately. If the attack is sooner then that, we have arranged backup plans. See you at Hogwarts.'
The letter ended with the headmaster's full name, in grotesque, thin letters. Harry was feeling very uncomfortable. He was happy, but afraid. Happy, because in three days he would get out of here, but afraid that it might mean he would be the only one to survive the massacre that was bound to happen in this small town. He sighed and thought about the deaths he had already witnessed. He knew perfectly well he didn't want to see it happen again. A tear for Sirius fell to the ground. Even though Harry had been able to cope with the death of his godfather better than anyone expected, he wasn't quite ready to talk about it yet. He knew that it wasn't really his fault Sirius had died. It was Bellatrix's fault, and Harry would make sure the woman got what she deserved.
Sirius would've fought for Dumbledore, Harry knew it. If Sirius had been asked to go defend Harry's house, he would've done it without asking questions, even if it meant going up against a hundred dementors. In this case, his godfather had chosen to defend Harry no matter the danger, and that had cost him his life.
At least he didn't suffer.
Harry sighed. He knew he should put the past behind him, but forgetting about Sirius was like forgetting about all the things that had ever happened to him. He couldn't do it. A loud snore followed by whimpering in the adjacent room made Harry yelp a bit. His cousin Dudley had been awfully quiet this summer. The dementors had most likely scarred him more than Harry could even imagine. The dark creatures that sucked away every happy feeling along with your soul, had left an imprint so deep Dudley would wake up almost every night, screaming, white as the blanket he slept on.
Harry was worried about the other boy. He couldn't help it. Even though Dudley had made his childhood a living hell, he was still just a Muggle boy. He didn't know what had attacked him last year, and he shouldn't be going through the horrors that the dementors caused one to relive countless times. Harry knew how real dreams could be -- especially nightmares - but simply couldn't find the determination to practice Occlumency. In fact, he couldn't care less about it. He hadn't received any dreams of Voldemort lately, though when he was especially confident that he would have a normal slumber, nightmares would pop up their ugly heads again, making Harry's scar hurt for days.
Harry stood up from his bed and looked down upon the street. Nothing was to be seen in the silent neighbourhood. Everyone was sleeping, and Harry realized he should go sleep a bit as well, if he didn't want to look like a ghost the next morning. He sighed and crawled into his bed. Sleep wouldn't come so easily and even then, as Harry knew, it wouldn't last for very long. He had the dull feeling in his stomach that indicated a rough night was ahead. The nightmares would most likely wake him up again, within an hour of going to sleep. He grabbed a Chocolate Frog from the pile Ron had sent him over the holidays. Harry smiled at the thought of his friend, and then thought about the others: Hermione, Neville, Ginny, and Luna. He would see all of them again, soon. And with that he dozed off, the unopened Chocolate Frog still in his hand.
"All the spells are in place, my Lord. We can commence on your word," said a Death Eater in a confident voice.
Harry's harsh voice seemed to resonate through the chamber. "Very well, Lucius. I command the attack to commence."
"Very well, my Lord," said Lucius Malfoy, before walking off.
Another man, small and trembling heavily, stepped forward. "Master...?" came the shivering voice of the traitor.
"What is it, Wormtail?" Harry said fiercely. He was angry at the stupid rat. He had most likely failed another mission.
"Master, we have him, sir," the shivering man replied. He had a look of fear, but also had a little pride in his eyes.
"Very well. I will question him later. Right now..." Harry stopped. Harry felt as if he was pushed away from the conversation.
Wormtail seemed to shiver more, not grasping what was happening before him, and he asked, "Should I bring the werewolf to a cell?" when Harry suddenly burst out in fury.
"Wormtail, you idiot! He's here! Potter's here! He knows now! /CRUCIO/!"
The small man screamed and fell to the ground, his body rocking back and forth from the incredible pain the curse caused.
"Potter... get out NOW!" Harry heard himself say. With a snap, and a burst of pain through his lightning bolt-shaped scar, Harry woke up screaming, the pain in his scar more unbearable than ever.
Uncle Vernon had appeared in his bedroom and was screaming at Harry, but Harry couldn't make out what the words were. He was feeling incredibly sick, and his heart was pounding fiercely. He jumped up groggily. The words his uncle shouted were somehow familiar, but Harry didn't recognize them. He just stood there, dazed, not able to say anything to his uncle, purely because he didn't know /how/.
Suddenly, there was a sharp pain, and Harry found himself on the ground. Uncle Vernon had punched him against the side of the head, and Harry had nearly passed out from the force of the impact alone. He came slightly to his senses, and could only utter a sharp, painful scream before everything became blurry and then black.
Moments, perhaps hours later he woke up on a couch. It took Harry a few minutes before he realized where he was. He looked around cautiously, to see if anyone was near. Aunt Petunia was less than a meter away, apparently sleeping in the chair. He tried to wake here as silently as possible.
"Aunt?" he whispered, his voice sounding horribly like Voldemort's. Aunt Petunia's eyes snapped open, and looked at Harry with a face that he had seen before many times before; As if she was smelling something horrible.
"Vernon, he's awake!" she seemed to shout, terrorizing Harry's sensitive ears. Every sound seemed dozens of times louder, and he could even hear his aunt's heart beating. He quickly realized it was his own heart he heard.
In an effort to quiet her down, he whispered, "Softer, please."
Aunt Petunia seemed to understand what he meant and continued to have very loud conversation with her husband in the corner of the room. Harry's ears were still picking up every sound magnified many times, making Harry's head feel as if a sledgehammer was hitting it. He could easily understand what they were talking about, though he would've liked it more had they talked softer. The word 'freak' seemed to appear frequently, along with 'crazy', 'stupid', and 'demented'. Harry concentrated on speaking, and with a very low voice, he told his aunt that he needed parchment. She seemed to not listen to him, and he tried to say it a little louder. Uncle Vernon looked at him and then walked over to the side of the couch, his head as red as the average tomato.
"Yes, what is it now? Gotten in to trouble with those freakish friends of yours, have you?" his uncle said in his common tone: one of surpressed anger.
Harry tried to talk again, but although he thought he spoke, his uncle didn't seem to hear it. He panicked slightly, and suddenly his voice returned. He heard himself yell, "I need parchment," quite a lot louder than he had intended. Uncle Vernon's face became slightly more red, edging dangerously close to purple, before the huge man turned around and headed for the stairs. Harry wondered how his uncle could have ever gotten him down the stairs to the living room after he had passed out upstairs. Aunt Petunia still stood there in the corner, pale, but she seemed more than a little nervous.
"Aunt Petunia," Harry whispered. The sound of his voice, even in a whisper, sounded unnaturally loud. "It was /him,/" he added, and then concentrated on speaking clearly. Aunt Petunia, who was still looking at him with a look of pure loathing, seemed to falter slightly.
His aunt's colour became a lot more like a ghost's now, and she almost let out a small scream. She proceeded to rush out of the room, as if afraid of Harry's every movement. Loud thumps indicated Uncle Vernon was on his way back down, and from the loud screeching he had taken Hedwig with him as well. A few moments later the big man and the owl entered the living room. Uncle Vernon was still very red in the face, with three distinct slashes now appearing on his nose.
"Bloody owls," he muttered, and Harry could hear the barely suppressed anger again, as well as obvious disgust. The man then tossed a piece of parchment and a feather to Harry. He put a small bottle of ink on the table, and very carefully placed the owl on the table as well. A few seconds later, Uncle Vernon had disappeared through the same door as his wife had moments before.
"Thanks," Harry said sarcastically. It was obvious Uncle Vernon was now officially scared of him as well, and he was sure that the courtesy of moments before was just to prevent Harry from using any deadly curses when he ran out of the house. Harry didn't really care, as he had something much more important to write right now. Harry concentrated on the paper, trying to make sure it looked clean, but a few tears and drops of blood that dripped from his nose still landed on the parchment.
/'Dear Professor Dumbledore/,' he began. He thought for a moment on how to describe what had happened. Then he quickly wrote the rest of the letter.
'I'm sorry to disturb you at this hour, but I've just had a rather painful vision from Voldemort. I think they might have caught Professor Lupin... they were talking about a cell for a werewolf when Voldemort noticed my presence and kicked me out of his mind, harder than ever before. Lucius Malfoy also said something about a plan that was beginning. When I woke up, I was screaming so loud my uncle hit me, and when I woke up again I found them very afraid of me. I hope you can tell me what is going on, and whether Moony is safe?'
He closed the letter in a small envelope that Hedwig had grabbed from his desk on the way down. A few moments later the owl swooped out of the kitchen window, soaring through the sky at incredible speeds. Now all Harry could do was wait.
Not more than half an hour later, Professor Dumbledore appeared right in front of Harry, who was just heading back to the couch with some food. The headmaster glanced at Harry, who hadn't noticed the old man yet, and then smiled.
Harry jumped up, since the voice of the headmaster had sounded much louder to his sensitive ears. He incidentally tossed a few cookies and a glass of milk all over the ancient wizard. Dumbledore looked at himself in disgust, and then swished his wand. All the food returned neatly to the place it was supposed to be. Dumbledore and Harry looked at each other for a moment longer, before both of them laughed softly. With a pat on the back, Dumbledore pushed Harry towards a chair.
"It was long ago that someone once dared to toss food at me. It was... invigorating." The familiar sparkles in Dumbledore's eyes returned, but they seemed dimmer than normal. "But I think we should discuss more... important matters," Dumbledore noted, and Harry nodded in reply. With a loud sigh the old man seated himself in the chair, and then swished his wand to make another one for Harry.
"So, Harry, I understand you had a dream again?" Dumbledore said very softly, as he had noticed Harry cringed somewhat at his previous words.
Harry wondered something and just bluntly asked it, softly, to not upset his still ringing ears. "How can you know what I wrote? Hedwig left not more then half an hour ago!" He looked at his Headmaster questioningly.
The old man grinned slightly and then answered his question simply, "Fawkes was nearby, and ran into Hedwig when she was heading out. Fawkes gave her...a lift, so to speak." Dumbledore ended his sentence rather abruptly. The familiar light in the headmaster's ancient eyes told him everything was okay, and Harry sighed in relief. "Remus is fine."
Harry grinned at the thought of the werewolf, but turned back to Dumbledore. "So what werewolf were they speaking about?"
Dumbledore seemed to be deep in thought for a moment before answering, "We do not exactly know. Moony is quite all right, as I've visited him just before heading here, and I've even checked if he wasn't an impostor. Needless to say, he wasn't. But he thanks you for reacting so quickly; Remus was about to head out, and could have easily fallen into an ambush."
Dumbledore frowned and stayed silent for a moment. "I think the Dark Lord knows where our Headquarters are, or at least the general position. Luckily, he can't enter it because I'd have to tell him where it was first, thanks to the Fidelius charm... but still. Remus might have easily been caught going out. I naturally disposed of the two Death Eater guards that were nearby myself, but I think those will not be the last." Dumbledore sighed deeply.
Harry could easily see the age of the headmaster now, when he was not smiling. The man was old, very old, and Harry knew that he realized perfectly well that this was going to be his last war. And even now, he was weakening; in a few year's time, he would no longer be the strongest wizard alive. Harry smiled slightly when the familiar glitter in the man's eyes returned somewhat.
"Well, Harry, is there anything that isn't in your letter that I should know?" Dumbledore asked quietly.
Harry shook his head, as he believed everything he had seen had been in the letter. Dumbledore nodded even before he answered and Harry cursed himself silently for not noticing the intrusion into his mind. He didn't have the strength to defend himself though, even if he had wanted to. "Not that I know how anyway, courtesy of Snape," Harry thought angrily.
There was a slight disappointment apparent in Dumbledore's eyes. "You should really practice Occlumency, Harry. It might save your life or that of someone else's, some day," Dumbledore added, before rising from his seat and shaking Harry's hand.
"See you in twodays, Harry. Yes, only two more to go, as it is already two in the morning," he added, and then popped out of existence, or rather, out of the house. Harry grinned as he went back upstairs. In two days, he would leave the Dursley's. Finally.
The next day went by quickly. There wasn't much to do. The few chores he normally would have done were not even mentioned, considering his uncle and aunt didn't want Harry to help with anything since he had gone crazy and /demented/.
Dudley yelped every time he heard that last word, as he knew that was pretty much the name of the things that had attacked him. Aunt Petunia was afraid every time Dudley spoke about the black creatures, but Uncle Vernon was actually somewhat ashamed that his son, his only son, had become so afraid of what seemed to be some sort of shadow.
Harry went upstairs again, and after packing some stuff into his trunk -- he didn't need much of it during the vacation anyway -- he jumped into bed, hoping the next day would be more interesting. And with that, he went into one of his rare, peaceful sleeps.
That night a scream was heard in the small town of Little Whinging. Not a scream as if someone was just doing it out of jest, but a tormented scream of someone that was being tortured to their death. Harry recognized the abrupt halt of the scream, as if the person had just given up life in a split second. He jumped up from his bed, fearing what he would see when he would look outside.
He finally decided he needed to know and gazed out of the window. He saw nothing out of the ordinary. He sighed and leaned back slightly. "I'm scaring myself," he muttered to himself, and tried looking away from the window, but he couldn't.
Far in the distance, the thing he feared most appeared in the clouded sky. A green light shot through the night, expanding as it came higher. It took on the shape of a skull and sputtered as if it was a broken piece of fireworks. The green skull grew larger as it ascended and the green snake sticking out of its mouth made it look even more sinister.
The attack on Little Whinging had begun.
Harry quickly put on his clothes, and while doing that, ran over to the master bedroom. With a loud yell at the locked door -- they had locked it to prevent Harry from entering -- he heard a groan in response.
"Wassit?" his uncle yelled groggily from the other side of the door.
"Uncle Vernon, open up!" Harry yelled, and a few seconds later a sleepy but furious Uncle Vernon opened the bedroom door.
"This'd better be good!" he said, and suppressed a yawn. Harry took his chance and sped into the room, making his aunt utter a slight scream before she realized he was heading for the window. With a quick movement he pulled away the curtains, taking the entire curtain rail with them.
"What is the meaning of this?" Uncle Vernon yelled, before he looked in astonishment at the distant green skull, which was now accompanied by a second, smaller Dark Mark.
Aunt Petunia looked over and cried out loudly once she recognized the green shape. Harry looked at her, fearing that she was going to act strange towards him, but he was also relieved that at least someone else in the house knew the meaning of the Mark.
"You recognize them, don't you, Aunt Petunia?' Harry said softly. The huge eyes that were fixed on the green skulls slowly turned towards him. She nodded almost invisibly, and brought a hand to her mouth. It was obvious loathing and fear were now fighting for dominance.
"Are they... looking for /us/?" she uttered finally.
Uncle Vernon's head went from the red color it had developed when Harry was banging at the door to a kind of spotted red and purple. "Us, Petunia? Why would those...those.../freaks/ be looking for us?"
Both of the elder Dursleys were now very much awake as Dudley ran in to find out why his mother had screamed just a moment before. Dudley didn't know what the skull was, but he seemed almost as afraid as the night he was attacked by the dementors as he saw his parent's ashen faces. The three Dursleys were now standing in the room, completely silent, staring at Harry. Harry didn't quite know what to do and looked towards the floor, sighing. Aunt Petunia gave a small yelp, as she thought he was confirming her suspicions.
"I don't think so..." he muttered before speeding out of the room, trying to escape the piercing looks from his only relatives. He ran into his own room, locked the door, grabbed a piece of parchment and quickly wrote a letter to Professor Dumbledore, notifying him of the situation. Not more than thirty seconds later, Hedwig flew out into the sky, as distant yelling and green and red beams of light were clear signs that the had battle intensified. Perhaps the Aurors had arrived. Perhaps the Death Eaters were just having a bit of fun with the Muggle population. Either way, Harry knew that there was fighting going on and it was heading in his direction.
Harry ran back out of his room, first dashing into the door because he had forgotten to unlock it in the rush. He ran back to the Dursleys, who were still standing in the same spots as a few minutes before.
"If you know what's good for you, run.!" he said quickly, and his aunt wailed softly. "Leave the house and head out of town. You might escape the raid," he said more convincingly, but they didn't seem to listen. Not that he really cared if the Dursleys got out - he was slightly ashamed of that though, though.
Harry looked outside and saw several people, all in robes, run trough the alleys surrounding Privet Drive. He could only think of a single reason why the Ministry of Magic personnel had to run: there were Apparition wards in place. That would mean that the rescue squad would never reach his house in time; the low ranking Aurors obviously didn't know he lived here.
Harry suddenly saw a glimmer of black on the opposite side of the road. It was almost invisible, but once you had your eyes on it... undeniably something, or someone, was sneaking trough the street, using a Camouflage or Disillusionment spell.
It also meant that person was heading towards the door of Number Four, Privet Drive.
Harry followed the man with his eyes -- as he had decided a thing couldn't read the number on a house -- until the doorbell rang. Harry thought he had seen something of a tail but he quickly dismissed it, as no man he knew had a tail except for Firenze, who was not quite a man if you took it literally. On a side note, he thought, Firenze would be the last person anyone would send to his door.
Harry grabbed his wand and headed down to the front door. Whoever it was polite enough to push the doorbell, so hopefully that meant it was not a Death Eater. Harry assumed that they would most likely kick in the door or use a spell to do it for them.
Gathering all his courage, Harry stepped towards the door and slowly opened it. He still couldn't see who was standing in front of him, as the Camouflage spell was still in place, but he did see that they were was possibly as big as Hagrid.
"Hagrid?" Harry muttered softly, but all he got in return was a hiss. A clear hiss, that seemed to scream the word 'No!' in his head. Harry blinked and tried to see who was hiding under the camouflage. "Who are you?" Harry said clearly.
The figure hissed again.
Harry suddenly understood what was happening. Whoever was in front of him was speaking in Parseltongue, and since Harry didn't have anything that resembled a snake in sight, he was speaking normal English. So most likely whatever it was, he decided, it had to be a snake-like creature since it was only able to communicate in the language of snakes.
He concentrated hard on the image of the first snake he could think of; the Basilisk he had killed in his second year. When he spoke again, he seemed to be moving his lips differently than normal, and he knew it was working.
"/Who are you?"/ Harry hissed.
This time the answer came. "/I asssk you again, Are you Harry Jamesss Potter/?"
"/I am,"/ Harry answered simply, and the snake-creature hissed what could have been 'at last'.
"/Then tell me, who are you?"/ Harry asked again, and the snake creature gave a most peculiar answer.
"/I carry no name."/ Harry wondered for a moment how it could not have a name, before he hissed, in as much of a curious tone as he could muster.
"W/hat are you? I cannot see you/." Before he had finished the sentence the air seemed to ripple, and the snake-creature suddenly appeared as if from thin air. Harry jumped back in fear, as what faced him seemed to be a creature from his nightmares. A large, two-legged lizard faced him; it had a slender body, full of shimmering silver scales. It had two long arms, carrying four claws each, and the head seemed like that of a crocodile, without the long snout. Harry recognized it as a dinosaur, and couldn't prevent himself from opening his mouth in wonder. The dinosaur was magnificent, even though it seemed quite deadly. The shimmering of his scales and the fiery look in its eyes only intensified Harry's suspicion that this was a magic creature.
"/Are... aren't you extinct/?" Harry said softly.
"/I am mossst certainly not!"/ the dinosaur hissed, slightly irritated. /"I am what wizards know as a Lacturesss Aurorae. A magic lizard. The onesss without magic call my race Velociraptor, or Monssster. My race may be few in number, but we are not extinct. The wizardssss did make usss pledge to not ssshow ourselves to non-magic usersss, Harry Jamesss Potter," /the Raptor answered.
Harry hissed softly in return, "/Who sent you? Why are you here?"/
The Lactures blinked with two different sets of eyelids, then answered softly, "/Albusss Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore sssent me to get you. I wasss in the neighborhood."/
Harry smiled. At least he knew this lizard remembered names, plus he knew it wasn't here to harm him. "/You have to take me somewhere?" /Harry hissed back, hearing the distant yells approaching ever faster.
The lizard hissed loudly, sounding very annoyed. "Did I not jussst say Albusss Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore sssent me to get you?"
Harry grinned slightly at the lizard, before realizing the town was still under attack. A distant spell hit a tree and it seemed to fall over onto the street, although it was too far away to know what exactly was going on.
Harry came to his senses slightly, and turned back towards the Lactures that was flicking its tail every few seconds. Harry heard a soft thumping, and when he turned around, he came face to face with an Uncle Vernon with a face that had a color that was in between red from anger, white from fear, and blue from nausea. And the usual purple from pure hate. The man walked unsteadily towards Harry.
"Now boy, close that door before those stupid freak friends of yours breaks it down!" he said loudly, obviously not seeing the Lactures that was only a meter away from him.
"/Um... Lactures? Why can't he see you? He's one of the Muggles," /he hissed at the dinosaur.
It looked slightly uneasy, but replied a few seconds in a voice that suggested it was very courageous./ "He doesss not know my true name. Only thossse that I have told my true name can sssee me. Or those that sssave me from death.'"/
Harry thought about the answer for a second. "But why can I see you then? I do not know your true name... I don't even know any way to call you... and I haven't rescued you either."
The lizard looked annoyed. /"Of courssse I have told you my true name. I told you I carried no name,'" /it hissed.
Harry suddenly realized what the lizard was saying. "So by telling me your true name, I can see you? Then why could I see you slightly, even before you told me?"
The lizard's eyes went wider than they were before, and it even looked slightly fearful, before it regained its composure. "That, I cannot sssay. I do not think anyone can even /sslightly sssee us unless we have told him or her our name. Hmm... I must asssk Albusss Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore."/
"/And with 'us' you mean your race?" /Harry replied.
"/Yesss, Harry Jamesss Potter," /it hissed.
"Why are you hissing at the air, boy!" Uncle Vernon suddenly said, effectively ending the conversation the two were having.
"/There is an invisible magic dinosaur here, Uncle,"/ Harry said softly, cringing at how /that /sounded, and Uncle Vernon's eyes went even wider.
"Go hissing at some wall, boy, not at me!"
Harry didn't quite know what to make of the remark, before realizing he was still speaking in Parseltongue. He quickly concentrated on the face of the big man in front of him, and tried again.
"There is an invisible magic dinosaur here, Uncle Vernon."
Uncle Vernon reacted to that news in the same way Dudley reacts to a diet. With a loud scream, he ran out of the hall, and into the living room.
"/Curiousss Muggle,"/ the lizard hissed, and Harry couldn't agree more. A stray curse hitting a house one block away made Harry snap out of his daze, and he quickly hissed at the lizard again.
"/We must leave. I will get my most important belongings, and then join you/."
"/Harry James Potter. Moody will get the Mugglesss. He will bring them to a sssafe place. The houssse-elf Dobby will get your other belongingsss/."
Harry nodded and headed upstairs quickly, running into his room. He evaded Petunia and Dudley, who had moved towards the stairs but still had their eyes fixed towards the window, which now showed no less than eight Dark Marks sinisterly floating above the town.
Harry put the wand he was still holding into his pocket, picked up a small bag, stuffed in a few robes, his invisibility cloak, the Marauder's Map, a few quills and some ink. He also grabbed a lot of parchment and stuffed it all into the bag. He swiftly closed the bag, looked around his room once more, and grabbed a few Chocolate Frogs form the pile in the corner of the room before heading downstairs.
He could hear a gruff voice shouting commands at the Dursleys, and grinned widely when he saw Moody in the living room, driving the Dursleys into a corner as if they were cattle. In his hand was a very dirty hat, and Harry decided it had to be a Portkey. He winked at the ex-Auror and even though the man was busy with the Dursleys and had his back turned to Harry, he waved slightly in return, while shouting, "I'll see you at Headquarters, Potter. Now let's get these Muggles out of here!"
Harry couldn't stop himself and he shouted, "Constant vigilance!" towards the Dursleys, imitating Moody's voice. The Dursley's all yelped, and a loud "hat...hat...hat...hat" filled the air as Moody had suddenly burst into laughter.
Harry turned around towards the Lactures. The lizard had somehow managed to leave the house without leaving any marks of its presence. Harry realized that the lizard had only taken a few steps back to let Moody in.
Harry walked outside and immediately a curse swooshed past Harry, hitting a lantern across the street. It fell down, half of it spontaneously combusting. Harry let out a slight scream, and ran over to the lizard quickly.
"/Get on now, Harry Jamesss Potter!" /it hissed, and its back legs bent to get its back closer to the ground. "/They cannot sssee you when you are on my back,'/" it hissed again, and Harry nodded. More curses hit several objects in the vicinity, although the distance between Harry and the approaching Death Eaters was still too big for them to aim more precisely.
"/It's all right, Lactures... it's just that I'm afraid Moody won't get the Muggles out,'/" he hissed, and the big lizard seemed to nod.
"/He will, believe me, Harry Jamesssss Potter."/
Harry decided that staying out here in the open would not be advisable and quickly mounted the dinosaur. It didn't show any signs that the weight of Harry might be too much, and slowly took a few steps. Harry felt abnormally peaceful, and extremely stable, while sitting on the creature's back. When it walked, Harry only had a slight sensation of movement, not at all uncomfortable.
The Lactures turned its head towards Harry, effectively turning it around almost completely on its long and slender neck. Its large and sharp teeth made it clear this was a predator.
"/Harry Jamesss Potter. Moody has left with your relativesss."/
Harry nodded, but began to wonder why the lizard was persisting in using Harry's full name. It made him think of his father, and subsequently of the Marauders and his godfather. But, as Harry thought darkly, anything made him think of Sirius these days.
Harry shook his head slightly, and quietly hissed, "Then we must leave, right now"
The Lactures suddenly took off with an incredible burst of power. Within a few seconds they were running at a speed most cars would be proud of. They ran past the Death Eaters, who were still firing curses everywhere. When they passed the men, Harry couldn't resist hitting one with his fist. Although it hurt afterwards, it was worth it, as the Death Eater was sent flying through the air for several meters and he land screaming in pain. Harry and the lizard were already out of the street. With another burst of speed they were running much closer to the edge of town, and Harry realized this creature was a much stronger magical creature than he had realized. He grabbed its scaly neck tighter, but he didn't feel at all as if he was going to fall off.
On the contrary, even at these incredible speeds and with the curves they were making, he felt like they were only going a fraction of the real speed. He felt like he was just sitting, not riding a magical dinosaur, and he even feared for a short while that it was just a dream. But it wasn't.
With another burst, and a jump that sent the two of them flying for several dozens of meters, they landed very close to a big road. Harry didn't know there were highways around here, but decided a highway was perfect for getting to London fast, as Harry figured that would most likely be the goal.
The lizard sped off, jumping over and evading the Muggle cars that covered the asphalt. Harry smiled a bit, but he felt slightly groggy. He had been sleeping just before the Dark Marks had shown themselves. And even though Harry knew the town of Little Whinging would be wrecked, or at least damaged badly, he also decided that this wasn't his fault. It only intensified his determination of making the prophecy come true in his favour. And with that, Harry fell into a light sleep, being kept perfectly still by the Lactures' innate magic.
"/Good night, Harry Jamesss Potter."/