The Second War is about to begin, with Voldemort gaining power, and the Ministry denying his return. Ron&Hermione are looked as the ones to destroy HIM, but no one saw the return of the Savior they...
Chapter 11: The war begins
The summer moved on fairly calmly, with the only excitement being the arrival of their OWL results, which both Harry and Hermione aced. However, by the time August rolled in, Voldemort had decided it was time to resume his activities, and he started big by attacking two Muggle villages with giants, as well as personally destroying a bridge in London.
This news hit the Order hard, and every time they looked on the map showing the Death Eaters, their faces showed a tinge of hopelessness. The Order had about three hundred men, divided throughout the land in small cells, and only Dumbledore knew who the members were. Harry and the gang had only met the region leaders, as well as the few people who were a part of the Inner Order.
Harry so far, had only helped the Order develop tactics, and many members saw how useful his extensive military training was. Once he had all the info he had asked for, he had made several tactical plans that the Order began implementing at once, and they actually managed to stop a few raids and capture several Death Eaters. Much to Harry's dismay, Dumbledore completely forbid the use of lethal force, and forbid Harry from doing any field duty.
Harry did not take this well, which was easily seen by the garage door sized hole in the kitchen wall. Only a hasty apparition saved Dumbledore that day, and it was two weeks before the two spoke again.
Fortunately, Harry was temporally distracted by Hermione's completion of basic training.
A lot of friends and family were invited to observe the exam, and were amazed to see Hermione do inhuman feats of strength and agility, before she sat down before a thick stack of paper and began going trough the written part of the test. While they waited for her to finish, the others struck up a talk with Harry.
"So, this is just basic training? From what Hermione told me, I wonder what you'd consider advanced." Sirius asked.
"Well, that depends on what you plan to do. The basic training gives you the basics of all professions, so that you can excel in whatever field you choose. For example, the workers and engineers study mostly practical applications of our knowledge, while the researches study mostly theory. The military, which was what I took, starts with advanced hand to hand combat, unarmed as well as with various blades and other cold weaponry, then moves on with firearms. We also study battle tactics, as well as team operations. If you go to the advanced training, you'll go trough officer training, and everything it entails. There are differences here, of course, mostly depending if you want to be in he army, or in the fleet." Harry was interrupted.
"And what did you choose? The fleet?" Mr. Granger asked.
"Yes. I finished both the normal and advanced officer training, and received a commission on one of the borders with the rank of datak, or commodore in English, and about thirty ships under my command." Several in the group stared wide-eyed at that, while Sirius whistled in appreciation.
"So, what happened after that?" A curious George asked.
"Well, I did that for about fifteen years, and even got promoted to nihtar, or admiral. Then, I was recalled back to the home world, and was granted a position in the Order of Death. While most of the training is secret, I can tell you that on average, out of ten candidates, only two graduate, and three die." Harry told the shocked crowd.
"That sounds really harsh. Why would anyone subject himself to something like that?" Mrs. Weasley frowned.
"Well, the Order is the best. By finishing the training, you prove, without a doubt, you are not ordinary. Also, you have to understand that the greatest honor for my kind to be useful to his people, and no one is more useful than the Order. To you, it may seem like a poor excuse to subject yourself to two centuries of torture, but trust me, it's worth it." This was said in such a way that everyone understood how important this was to his kind.
"As long as Hermione doesn't go trough that, I'll be happy." Mrs. Granger said.
"Don't worry, I doubt it she'll try a military career. She's much better suited for research." Harry looked at Hermione, who was frantically writing.
"Say, Harry, you guys do things for fun, right? Do you have sports?" Fred asked.
"Oh yes. People do all sort of things, but the greatest things are the Lantrisian Poetry Competition, and the Blood Ball tournament. The first is held annually, and trust me, very few things can compare. If I get my hands on a pensieve, I'll show you a few of my favorite competitions." Harry said somewhat dreamily.
"And the Blood Ball?" Sirius asked.
"Ah, that's different. To us, it's like Quidditch to you. The tournaments are held every five years, but each planet has a local league, as there are sector leagues as well. The only way to participate in the tournament is to win in a sector league, or be sponsored by a clan leader. Now, the game is pretty straightforward. It is played on a rectangular field the size of one and a half Quidditch pitch. The goal is simple. Each side has two large baskets. One is empty; the other has one hundred Bludger sized balls. The game ends when all of the opponent's balls are in your empty basket." Harry began.
"Sounds a little childish." Fred told him.
"The game is simple, yet really fun. There are several positions. First, you have one Guardian each. He can only move in a marked area around the baskets, and his task is obvious. Next, are the four Hunters. Their task is to get to the balls. The rule states that only one ball of each color may be in play at any given moment. The Guardian is aided by three Blockers, they are meant to stop the enemy hunters from reaching the Guardian. They cannot move outside their own field half. The last position is the Retriever. If a ball touches the ground, only he can touch it. This is a dangerous position, as the opponent Hunters cannot take the ball from the ground, but they can take it from the Retriever. To make games shorter, balls removed from your basket, cannot be returned." Harry continued.
"So, what are the rules?" Mr. Granger asked, obviously interested.
"Well, the main rule is no weapons. Then, there is a rule saying that only one hunter may stand in the Guardian circle. If there is more than one, they must leave within five seconds. Usually, this is enough for them to get a ball. Besides that and the territory restrictions, it's pretty much anything goes." Harry grinned at their bewildered faces.
"You're serious?" Ron asked in awe.
"Oh yes. I remember one of the more recent games I played in. I was a Retriever for the Grimskulls, the team of the Order. This was one of my worst injuries in the game. I was in the opponent's side of the field, and the moment I raised the ball, I got a triple body slam, and then, a six men pileup." The women gasped at that.
"Well, it wasn't pretty. Both arms broken, a shattered left hip, dislocated left shoulder and broken collar bone, eighteen broken ribs, a punctured lung, broken pelvis, a busted liver and kidney, several contusions on the head and a severe concussion. Yep, they had to carry me off the field. I actually needed medical intervention." Everyone looked at him like he was crazy.
"Harry, you do know that even half of those injuries would kill a human?" Mr. Granger said in almost a whisper.
"Of course. Well, the medics patched me up pretty fast, and I was back in the game in fifteen minutes." Harry grinned again.
"You're mental, mate." George slapped him on the back.
"Perhaps. Well, I got my limbs broken six more times, with a dozen ribs thrown in for good measure, but we won."
"So, these types of injuries are normal in this game?" Asked Mr. Weasley.
"Well, the minor leagues aren't so brutal, but when you're in the tournament, it's a bit different." Harry told them, and most nodded in understanding.
"I'm finished." Proclaimed Hermione.
Harry took the test from her, and began grading it with a calm face. About fifteen minutes later, he was finished, and spoke calmly.
"Well done. You pass."
"That's it? How well did I do?" Hermione said angrily.
"Well enough. That's all you need to know." Harry told her sternly, and even though she seemed displeased, she remained silent.
"Now, only one thing remains. You are to be given your Lantrisi name. As your sire, the honor falls to me and it with great pride, that I give you the name, Akshra." Harry said in an official tone, while Hermione stood before him, her head bowed in respect.
"You could have chosen a better name. That's another way to call me bookworm." She replied.
"Hermione, you should be proud of this name and its meaning. I chose it because it fits you." Harry grinned.
"What does it mean?" Mrs. Granger asked.
"She who seeks knowledge. It's not so bad. My name is Daroth. It means lightning." Harry tapped his scar.
"You think your name is bad? Here, I'll tell you the names of two other Lantrisi. Hor-Karesh and Sho-Holtas." Hermione paled when she heard those names.
"Hermione, what's wrong?" Ron asked, seeing her pale.
"Well, the rules for these names are that given names from the sire are one word, while names with more are earned. This is mostly an honor given to elders or after doing a particularly notable deed. Those two names are... well... nasty, to say the least." Hermione replied shakily.
"What do they mean?" Asked Mrs. Weasley.
"Sho-Holtas is easy to translate, it means 'Bringer of Death' a name she earned after a rather brutal skirmish. Hor-Karesh is a bit more difficult. A loose translation would be, 'The one who tears out opponents hearts with his bare hands'." Harry replied calmly.
"And you know these psychos?" Ron asked incredulously. Everyone was shocked, however, when Harry grabbed him by the throat, and growled at him, flexing his fangs and making people flinch.
"Those psychos, as you called them, were my sire and my girlfriend, who I dated for two centuries. Don't ever insult them again." With that, he dropped the boy, who gathered his breath for a few moments, then stood up, and spoke silently.
"I apologize for what I said. It was wrong, and I hope you can forgive me." Harry simply shook his hand and smiled. It seemed the subtle influence he exerted on the boy was paying off. He still had a long way to go, but, the start had been made.
As the summer slowly came to an end, the peace in Headquarters was broken with yet another row between Harry and Dumbledore. Currently, the Order was divided between the two. On one hand, Dumbledore was known and respected for his accomplishments and power, and a lot of the members supported his decision for non-lethal action. On the other side, Harry was not only powerful, but also had centuries of military experience, and he was quick to adapt to fighting in magical conditions. His analytical skills quickly picked up the weaknesses the wizards possessed, and he knew how to exploit them. His insistence for more aggressive action had a lot of support amongst the Aurors and other fighters. It seemed a rift was inevitable. However, Harry didn't want to undermine the old man's authority, and hoped that a compromise could be made.
"For the last time, Dumbledore, wake up and look around you. The Death Eaters outnumber us three to one. The only reason the Order still stands, is because we are better organized. If we don't shoot to kill, we won't stand a chance." Harry almost growled. The meeting had once again escalated in a fight with the old man.
"I understand your reasons, Harry, but I refuse to allow such actions." Dumbledore sighed.
"I want to ask you something. Do you oppose this because you don't want to kill Death Eaters, or you don't want us casting Unforgivables?" Harry asked.
"To be honest, it would be the latter. I have gone over your analysis of the mark, and I believe I have a way to remove it. I'll need a few more months, but I can manage it. So, those who don't want to serve Tom will have the chance to leave him. Those that refuse the chance don't deserve redemption. However, I hate to see you tainted by such foul curses." Dumbledore finally came into the open.
"I see. Well, I may have an alternative. Tell me, do you know any permanent duplicating charms?" Harry asked.
"I know a charm that should do it, yes. What do you want to duplicate?" Dumbledore asked.
Harry pulled a large gun from behind him and placed it on the table. Dumbledore nodded, and cast the spell. A glow covered the gun, and moments later, a second appeared next to it. Harry took the copy, and promptly disassembled it. After looking carefully at every piece, he reassembled it perfectly, and grinned.
"Perfect replica. The battery is empty, however, but that's easy to fix. The charm is permanent, right; it won't vanish at an awkward moment?" Harry turned to Dumbledore.
"Quite permanent. I guess you wish to share your weapons with the Order?" Dumbledore asked.
"Yes. All who wish to can learn how to handle these weapons. I have a few conditions, though. When the war is over, they will be returned to me, and under no circumstance, are they to be allowed to fall into the hands of non-Order members. I want you to swear on your life that these conditions will be upheld." Harry said sternly.
"This technology is very advanced, and very dangerous. Voldemort and his cronies won't be able to do much with it, but if the Muggles get their hands on it, they'll most likely try something with it, and most likely end up killing a lot of people." Harry told them.
"Aye, what you say makes sense. So, how do you use this thing?" Moody looked at the gun with fascination.
"It's very simple. Just aim this end at the enemy, and press this to the end. The rules are simple. Never ever look in the barrel, or point the weapon at a friend. If the weapon stops firing, check the battery. If it's empty, replace it, if it's not, put it away and at the first opportune moment, give it to me to look over. These weapons have four modes of firing. Single shot, meaning, with each pressing of the trigger, you get one shot. Then, we have the tri-burst semi-auto, meaning, with each press, you get three shots. Useful when you need more punch. Then, the rapid-fire full-auto, meaning, the weapon will fire rapidly as long as you hold the trigger pressed. And last, is the beam fire. Similar to the last, it fires a constant beam, capable of cutting trough even the strongest armor, but it drains the battery very rapidly. The rifles are better used for this." Harry finished his explanation, accompanied with him showing everything on the empty gun.
"You have rifles too? So, when can we see these things in action?" Moody asked eagerly.
"Well, I suggest we go to Hogwarts for that. The Quidditch pitch would be rather useful for a presentation." Harry told them.
"We can meet this Saturday then. Is there anything else of importance?" Dumbledore looked at the group.
When no one spoke, he said "Then, meeting adjourned. We'll meet this Saturday at ten o'clock at Hogwarts. Until then, everyone." Everyone slowly left, until only the usual crowd remained.
"Harry, how destructive are these weapons?" Dumbledore asked.
"Well, a single shot, unless fired at a limb away from the torso, would be lethal. A hit in the head would mean certain death, even for me, well; it would be, if certain precautions hadn't been made." He smirked.
"What do you mean?" Sirius asked.
"You see, I can regenerate damage, but, if my brain suffers too much damage, I'll die. However, Lord Deathhand thought of a way to save the shape shifters from such an end. As you need to be fairly old for this ability, you can understand why this was made. Now, we have a lot more room in the stomach area, so, we put this room to good use. I have two brains. One in my head, one in my gut, so to say." Harry told them.
"So, if they blow your head, you just re-grow it, and no harm done. If they blow your gut, you still have your head, so again, no harm done." Sirius grinned.
"Yep. It really is a brilliant solution. The sad part is, a lot of Lantrisi can't do it." Harry replied sadly, and retired to his room.
The next Saturday, he was at Hogwarts, with about fifty Decimator guns and rifles. After much deliberation, and extensive warding, they had even managed to duplicate the plasma grenades, much to Harry's excitement.
"Ladies and gentlemen, if I may have your attention. Allow me to demonstrate our newest weapons in the fight against the Dark Lord and his followers." A lot of the present cheered, and Harry was grateful that he asked for a silencing ward around the pitch. The grenades especially would be quite loud.
"This is the Decimator rifle. This was developed by an ally of ours, and given to us to use. Allow me to present their effectiveness. Those dummies have the same overall density as humans, so, you can assume that against a human target, the results would be roughly the same." Harry pointed to a bunch of conjured dummies.
"Now, please observe. This is the first mode of firing, called single shot." Harry took aim with the rifle, and shot at the nearest dummy. The rifle made a slight hissing sound, and a blue ball shot from it and quickly hit the dummy, clearly blowing its head away. A lot of the present stood slack-jawed at this.
"Next, we have the three-shot option. This is similar, but the shot is stronger." Harry shot a dummy that had a second one standing behind it. This time, three balls shot from the muzzle, blowing not only the first, but the second dummy as well.
"Now, my personal favorite, the rapid-fire full-auto." Harry once again twisted the small knob on the rifle, and took aim at a cluster of dummies. The rifle began rapidly spewing bluish balls at an incredible rate, and mere seconds later, the entire group of dummies was reduced to smoldering remains. Harry looked at the crowd, and saw a glint in several eyes that told him it was their favorite too.
"And last, we have the beam fire. This is usually used to cut trough armor or other obstacles, and less against moving targets." This time, he aimed at a huge slab of granite, and fired a thin blue beam quickly cut a deep trail trough it.
"Mr. Potter, what is that group of dummies for?" A woman asked, pointing at the group.
"They are for the last presentation. This is what I call the crowd breaker." Harry picked up a plasma grenade. "It can be set to activate after a certain time has passed, useful if you're setting a trap, or to activate on impact, useful for a situation like this. To activate it, you push this to set it on impact, then, flip this open, push this down, and throw." Harry did as demonstrated, and chugged the bomb at the cluster of dummies, and moments later, the entire group was showered in splinters.
"Damn, I forgot how strong those things were." Harry grinned sheepishly, while several men looked at the grenades with great interest.
"So, what do you say? Do you want to use them?" Harry asked, and was answered with loud cheers from the crowd.
Yes, this conflict was finally beginning to turn for the better, but still the war was far from over.
'Damn, if Lord Deathhand finds out I'm giving our technology to humans, he'll kill me as slow as possible.' Harry thought, for the first time glad he was in his own universe.