One-shot. The final battle between Harry and Voldemort doesn't go as anyone expected and what part does the Locked Room in the DoM have to play?
The Locked Room
This was it and Harry knew it. Breathing was becoming hard and his blood was seeping from his body with every weakening pump of his heart. All around him bodies lay soaking the green lawn of Hogwarts with blood; their cries hurt his head and broke his heart. He couldn't keep fighting on like this and Voldemort and his army got stronger everyday. The light side was losing fast, everyday more people fell to the dark magic the Death Eaters used. The pain in his head intensified and Harry looked up to stare straight into the burning red eyes of Voldemort; eyes that burned in triumph and strangely, remorse.
Voldemort took a step closer and knelt so that he was right in front of the battered body of his young nemesis. The boy was heavily wounded, had been throwing himself in front of curses all night in order to save his friends. The boy hadn't cared of the cost, he had just done it. For a moment Voldemort wished that he had such a friend as the young Potter staring defiantly back at him even through his pain, but he pushed the though away. He couldn't change the past; he could only ensure his future. Voldemort's hand was almost tentative as he reached out to brush the unruly black hair away from Potter's scar.
"You've been so brave" he commented softly, knowing the boy didn't have the energy to fight any longer "you've defied me at every turn, persevered when others would have given up and accepted that death was coming for them. I admire you yet you will die tonight Harry because I cannot afford to let you live. I know the prophecy and I can't die. I'll admit to you that I fear death, Harry, because you don't have much longer to live. You'll be seeing your parents soon and your godfather, perhaps then you can forgive me. You've been such a worthy opponent, Harry, if things had been different-"
Voldemort knew he was rambling but he wanted to prolong this moment, not to be cruel as most thought, but because he couldn't really believe that in a few short minutes everything would be over. It was all very anticlimactic. He had never expected Harry to go like this, lying there passively while he, Lord Voldemort, stroked back the blood and sweat matted hair. He had always expected that if Harry died it would be in a duel with him, though if he admitted the truth he had always suspected that it would not have been Harry losing the duel. It had been himself. He looked back down into Harry's face and found those unfathomable green eyes staring up at him with unidentified emotion.
Harry couldn't believe that Voldemort was kneeling next to him on the battlefield and stroking his hair as he lay dying. This was not something he had ever expected to happen. He knew he should hate Voldemort with every fiber of his being, but that wasn't what Harry felt at this moment, what he felt was...cared for. Voldemort was his enemy and yet as Harry lay dying it wasn't his so-called friends that comforted him, it was his enemy. No one had ever shown him such tenderness or confided in him like Voldemort was. Harry didn't fear death but he was glad that he wasn't going to be alone when it claimed him, yet he felt that he should give Voldemort something back in return. He needed to free Voldemort from his fear of death.
Reaching up with a weak hand, Harry tried to brush his fingers along Voldemort's face to return the comfort he was receiving, but he wasn't strong enough. Just as his hand was about to fall back to the wet earth below him, Harry felt it being grabbed up and pressed to surprisingly soft and warm flesh. Voldemort was leaning fully over him now so that they were practically embracing, Harry's lip near Voldemort's ear.
"Don't fear death" Harry whispered softly, hoarsely "I'll be there with you."
Before Voldemort could pull away Harry gathered the last shreds of magic he possessed and apparated them past the broken remains of Hogwarts wards and to the Department of Mysteries, more specifically to the locked room where the power of love resided.
Voldemort screamed once as the magic assaulted their bodies, their being, but he did not try and escape. Instead Voldemort pulled Harry closer as if trying to shelter him, accepting what was to come now that he was no longer alone. He did not scream again as the harsh yet gentle power of deep and abiding love overwhelmed their very beings, instead a smile crossed his face. It felt right, this ending, and Voldemort realized that he had been wrong to fear this wondrous thing.
"Thank you Harry" he whispered softly "thank you for giving this gift to me."
Harry merely smiled as the power grew in intensity around them, no longer able to talk as his gaze turned to some place beyond the earth. Voldemort followed Harry's gaze and saw a white ball of light growing around them, bathing them in cleansing purity before shattering.
"Harry..." the single word managed to fall from Voldemort's lips before the power took him.
~~ ~~ ~*~
A young Unspeakable stood in the circular room that led to the rest of the Department of Mysteries, staring in shock at the locked door that was now standing open. Tentatively he walked forward, opening the door further so that he could peer inside the room in which a great power existed. Except the power was no longer there, merely shimmering silver remnants of the powers physical manifestation that were showering down to land in a perfect circle around two bodies lying side-by-side in the middle of the room with joyful smiles on their face. The one body was unmistakably that of Harry Potter and the Unspeakable nearly felt his hope die until his gaze rested upon the other corpse. It wasn't that hard for him to recognize the Dark Lord Voldemort even without seeing the unnatural red eyes behind the closed eyelids. Shaking the Unspeakable stepped back and headed for the nearest fire place, there was no way he was entering that room and crossing through the silver flecks lying on the floor. He was going to floo Albus Dumbledore; Dumbledore would know what to do.
~~ ~~ ~*~
"Tom" a voice slowly brought him back to consciousness "wake up Tom."
Voldemort opened his eyes to find himself surrounded by a softly glowing white hallway, Harry Potter kneeling next to him with a happy smile on his face. But this wasn't quite the Harry he remembered, this Harry didn't have the same haunted green eyes and no cursed scar graced his forehead. This Harry was free. Tentatively he reached out and Harry clasped his hand. It was then that he realized that he too was different. His hands looked younger and the world around him was no longer tinted in red. Seeing his confusing the still grinning Harry conjured up a mirror which Voldemort took with unsteady hand.
What he saw shocked him. His eyes were no longer red, but once again brown, and he was no longer reptilian in appearance. In fact he looked as he had back in Hogwarts when he had been Harry's age. In awe he ran a hand through his hair, marveling in how much happier he felt and looked. He looked up at Harry but couldn't seem to form the right words to thank the boy and instead merely grinned back.
"Come on Tom" Harry's eyes were dancing "we have a little ways to go yet, and I think I hear my parents calling us."
Voldemort took one last glance in the mirror before vanishing it and racing after Harry down the white hallway towards the color they could see in the distance. Voldemort was dead. He was Tom Riddle now and Harry Potter was his friend.
"Wait up Harry" he called with a laugh "wait for me!"