Categories > Books > Harry Potter > Heart of the Warrior Book VI

Chapter 02: Desperation of the Warrior

by madnesspersonified 0 Reviews

TMNT 2003/Harry Potter Crossover. Sequel to Books I through V. With enemies coming from all directions, Harry Potter will need all the help he can get.

Category: Harry Potter - Rating: R - Genres: Crossover,Drama,Sci-fi - Characters: Dumbledore,Ginny,Harry,Lily,Snape,Voldemort - Warnings: [!!] [V] [?] - Published: 2007/12/20 - Updated: 2007/12/20 - 7414 words - Complete

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Chapter Two: Desperation of a Warrior

A loud bang echoed throughout the city of New York as Harry crashed to the ground, caught unaware by an unexpected attack from behind. Harry winced, before pulling himself up to his feet, to turn his head from left to right at the source of the attack.

A dagger whizzed towards Harry’s ear and Harry managed to roll underneath the attack, and spring to his feet, staring forward in a battle stance, where a figure in grey robes directly at Harry Potter.

“So, this is the little warrior who the dark one wants to test my skills against,” remarked the assassin as he sprang forward, catching Harry right in the chest with a sickening kick. A loud crack echoed and Harry would not have been surprised if several of his ribs had shattered from that one shot.

Harry sprang up tossing a set of shuriken at the assassin but the warrior was prepared for the attack, spinning around, before shooting purple smoke into the air, obscuring Harry’s vision. As the smoke cleared, Harry spun around and flipped out of the way, barely avoiding a staff being splintered right into the top of his head. The mercenary landed on his feet, before somersaulting towards Harry, both of his feet extended towards Harry’s chest. Harry ducked out of the way, but the assassin managed to kick off of a wall and fly directly towards Harry, cracking his head right into the jaw of the Boy Who Lived!

Harry dropped down to the ground, blood dripping down on the ground. He looked up, to see the assassin attempt to stab a sword towards his chest. In a flash, Harry swung used his blade to block the attack, seconds before the sword would have pierced through his skin. With a seventy degree swipe of blade, the attacker’s sword was broken cleanly in half. Harry grabbed him by the front of the robes, ignoring the fact that blood dripped down his own jaw. The assassin pulled a holster from his sleeve and shot sparks right into the face of Harry, forcing his opponent to leap back in shock, a few mild burns on his face.

The assassin gracefully leapt to the side and Harry had a trick up his sleeve, flinging a Kusari-Gama chain from his sleeve, right towards the assassin. The chain spiraled around the assassin’s ankles, trapping him. At least for the moment, as the mercenary grabbed the chain, before twisting it, causing Harry to somersault right onto his back, striking the pavement. Harry pulled himself to his feet, favoring his back but the assassin had already maneuvered himself right behind Harry. In a flash, an assassin pulled a Hanbo from underneath his robes, before shooting a dagger right out of it, right towards Harry’s face. A quick step to the side and the dagger sailed harmlessly over Harry’s shoulder. The assassin spun the Hanbo gracefully, before shooting a chain out from it. The chain wrapped itself around Harry’s arms, pinning it to his side. Harry squirmed as the assassin nodded in satisfaction.

The satisfaction evaporated as the chain melted from around Harry, a puddle dropping to the ground around Harry’s feet. Harry launched himself towards the assassin, pinning him down with his blade inches away from his throat.

“Who sent you?” asked Harry dangerously in spite of the pain of his broken jaw but the assassin tucked his feet into Harry’s stomach, causing the Boy-Who-Lived to drop his blade, before flipping him right into the glass window of a downtown shop. The glass shattered, and Harry fell to the ground, bleeding severely with several pieces of broken glass surrounding his body.

Harry pulled his wand from his sleeve, pointing it towards the pieces of broken glass. With a swish and flick motion, the jagged pieces of glass levitated into the air. Another wand movement, and the pieces of glass shot towards the assassin, who expertly pulled out a sword, ducking and dodging the assault, while slicing the pieces of glass that he could not dodge with his sword.

Harry pulled himself up before leaping at his attacker from the window. The attacker sprang up and cut Harry out of the air with a vicious kick, cracking Harry right in the sternum! Harry dropped down, and the assassin leapt over Harry, before landing on his feet and whipping out his sword in one fluid motion, slashing the right arm of Harry. Harry fell to his knees, blood dripping from the gash on his arm. The assassin looked down at Harry, before kicking him directly in the broken jaw, sending Harry flying to his back.

“Ninety more seconds,” hissed a low voice in the ear of the assassin Harry crawled behind the assassin, before swinging his feet at the legs of his attacker. The assassin was knocked off balance and he flew backwards, yelling in pain from the brat hitting his legs.

Despite all the blood dripping from his body, Harry was pleased that he had found a weakness in his attacker. Harry spotted his blade laying a few inches away and quickly swiped it into his hand, before aiming a deadly jab towards the legs of his attacker. The attacker pivoted around Harry, bending his wrist, before shoving his palm directly in Harry’s right ear at a ninety degree angle. This one martial arts strike knocked Harry completely off balance. Harry dropped to the ground as the mercenary backed off; stalling for any time he could muster.

Harry pulled himself up to his feet, before becoming dizzy, collapsing to his knees, a ringing sensation echoing through his head. Another futile attempt to get to his feet and Harry collapsed onto the ground, a ringing in his ears and a stabbing pain through his scar.

The assassin stepped forward, pulling out a dagger, raising it high above his head. He had defeated this mysterious warrior that he had been sent to fight and now he was going to take the spoils of victory, the execution of the boy. The dagger moved down to stab the boy in the back of the neck.

“No,” hissed the voice of the assassin’s employer angrily. “The boy is mine to kill.”

The mercenary seemed to stand in stasis, before he felt a jerking sensation that pulled him into thin air.

Harry managed to lift his head up, with a shocked look on his face. One second his attacker was there, and the next second, the assassin had just vanished. The most disturbing part of the entire situation was that the assassin had Harry in a compromising position. Yet, instead of killing him, the assassin just left.

Harry placed his hands on the ground, crawling on the pavement, leaving a trail of blood alongside him as he struggled home. It was lucky that Harry was attacked not too far away from the Potter residence. Inch by inch, Harry squirmed towards the front door, up the driveway before reaching the front door. Harry gingerly pulled himself to a standing position, clinging on the edge of the front door, before managing to shakily lift his arm and press the door bell of his house.

A few seconds pause and the door creaked open, with Hailey sticking her head out. Her confused look became one of complete terror when she saw the state her brother was in.

“Harry!” yelled Hailey in a completely horrified voice, as she bent down to help her brother up, as a few drops of blood fell to the ground. “What happened?”

“Attacked by an assassin,” answered Harry in a pained voice, his jaw aching as his sister guided him towards the couch. Harry collapsed onto the couch when he reached it, before looking up at Hailey with a pleading look in his eyes. “Get Mum.”

“Oh, yes of course,” said Hailey in a worried voice, backing away from her brother. The only time she could remember that Harry had been able to stand was the night Voldemort returned and Harry had gotten the bright idea to blast himself through two entire sets of Anti-Apparation wards to escape from Voldemort. “Mum, come quick. Harry’s hurt, bad!”

Lily Potter ran down the stairs from the attic at the frantic screams from her daughter about her son being hurt. Almost a week ago, Harry had come home from what was apparently a scuffle with the Foot and a trio of androids with a shattered nose. Thankfully, when her children were at Hogwarts, Lily was studying to become a Healer, so she managed to heal Harry’s nose in no time flat. It wasn’t because she wanted to go into Healing as a career, but this choice of action was because of the extraordinary amount of trouble that Harry had faced. Unfortunately, that led to Harry getting serious injured far too often, because he was far too stubborn to back off from a confrontation when he was at a disadvantage. Almost like Lily when she was younger. An attitude that caused a fair share of anxious, nearly fatal, moments against Death Eaters.

In fact, when push came to shove, Lily was still like that. A confrontation with Bellatrix Lestrange after the Interim Ministry of Magic elections of six months ago had proved that simple fact.

Lily reached the living room and gasped as she saw her son, who could barely hold his head up. This was definitely the worst that she had seen him. Lily decided she would ask questions later, Harry was in desperately in need of Healing promptly.

Lily waved her wand, stitching up the small cuts on Harry’s face and removing the broken pieces of glass from his hair. A wave her wand caused a purple light to engulf Harry’s jaw, healing it in a few seconds. Her eyes traveled to his ear, which was a raw red color and oozing puss.

“Harry, I need to know what happened to your ear so I can heal it,” said Lily firmly.

“The assassin that attacked me, struck me in the ear with his palm with his wrist bent at a ninety degree angle, knocking me off balance,” muttered Harry in a dazed voice.

“Mongolian Death Strike,” said Lily darkly. “Don’t move. I need to get something to heal that ear and that nasty gash on your arm, not to mention your ear.”

“What is a Mongolian Death Strike?” asked Harry in a confused voice. Master Splinter hadn’t taught Harry or his brothers of that particular move.

“I’ll explain later, we need to heal that ear quickly,” answered Lily quickly as she moved quickly to her Potion’s Lab that was adjacent from her bedroom.

A moment later, Lily returned with two vials. One of them contained a light blue potion; the second one contained a smoking purple mixture. Lily uncorked the blue potion and quickly spread it onto Harry’s right ear. Harry gritted his teeth, as his ear as if it was on fire for a few seconds, before it slowly turned into a dull stabbing sensation. At least the ringing began to fade from Harry’s head. The potion quickly absorbed and Lily shot bandages from her wand, wrapping up Harry’s injured ear.

“Your ear should completely heal in a few weeks, Harry and should retain the majority of your hearing,” said Lily, as she poured the purple potion into the gash on her son’s arm, cleaning out the wound. After the wound was completely clean, Lily waved her wand, closing the wound and Harry leaned back, a bit dazed from the attack.

“Now, Harry, exactly what happened?” prompted Hailey calmly.

“It’s just as I told you, an assassin, a mercenary, whatever you want to call him, attacked me out of nowhere, completely unprovoked this time, I might add,” explained Harry quickly. “For an old guy, this guy moved pretty damn quick, seemed to use some rather unique attacks. Anyway, he hit me with this Mongolian Death Strike or whatever, and had me down at a distinct disadvantage. Then he just vanished.”

“He could have killed you and he just left,” repeated Lily.

“So that’s a good thing,” said Hailey in a reasonable voice. “Right?”

“Well of course if its good, “ said Lily quickly. “But it’s also very disturbing.”

“True, why go to all the trouble of sending an assassin after someone and the assassin just leaves when he could have killed me,” replied Harry calmly before adding. “Not that I’m complaining about still being alive.”

“Maybe whoever sent this assassin after you, didn’t want you dead, at least not by his own hand,” suggested Lily calmly. “Someone who wanted the pleasure for killing you all to himself.”

“Voldemort,” chorused Hailey and Harry in unison.

“None other,” said Lily. “That brings up another disturbing detail in his plan. Why would Voldemort abandon his usual opinions? He thinks of anything Muggle to be rubbish after all. So, why send Muggle mercenaries after you?”

“Why indeed,” muttered Harry in a thoughtful voice. Maybe Voldemort wanted an accurate picture of his skills from a professional in the Muggle fighting arts but something told Harry that might not be exactly right.

“We may find out all too soon but if Voldemort continues to send mercenaries after you, things could get a bit messy and there could be injuries that even magic can’t heal,” said Lily sternly.

“So, I suppose I’m to shut myself inside my room and just hide under my bed,” answered Harry moodily.

“No, of course not, I’m just telling you to exercise a bit more caution when you go out for a walk,” said Lily, looking at Harry sternly, hoping that he would understand. “Don’t get yourself in a mess that you can’t get yourself out of. Understand?”

“Yes Mum,” said Harry in a deflated voice.

“What is the Mongolian Death Strike, anyway Mum?” asked Hailey, breaking the silence.

“Yes, I’ve never heard of it and I don’t think Master Splinter has ever mentioned it in almost ten years worth of lessons,” added Harry.

“It’s a dangerous but quite rare martial arts strike, that originates in Mongolian,” said Lily.

“Funnily enough, I gathered that much from the name of the maneuver,” answered Harry calmly.

“Of course, but you see, it takes skill and precision to master such a move and it could go disastrously wrong if someone who didn’t have the required talent attempted to hit someone with that move,” replied Lily. “The only reason I know about it, is I spent some time in Mongolia during my sixth year when I was an Unspeakable and I saw a diagram detailing the basic technique between the Mongolian Death Strike. Obviously, I’m not a martial arts master, having never had time to learn the art at that, but the diagrams seemed to illustrate the unfortunate possibilities and Harry, you were very lucky to come out with the minimal damage to your right ear.”

“Exactly how so?” prompted Harry.

“Well, you could’ve at the very least became deaf it that ear had that mercenary hit you any harder or he could have knocked your ear completely off with that one maneuver,” said Lily darkly, causing Harry’s eyes to widen in horror. “And Merlin forbid if you suffered a blow with the Mongolian Death Strike in your neck or chest.”

Harry nodded somberly. His mother didn’t have to elaborate forward. If he was struck in either his head or chest, they wouldn’t be having this conversation right now.

“I strongly suggest you go upstairs and get some rest Harry,” said Lily and Harry didn’t have any problem with taking that suggestion. He was tired and irritable anyway from getting knocked around by an assassin that he never met in his life. Not to mention the fact that despite his wounds being physically healed, he had some residual soreness that would only go away with time.

Harry tried to ignore the light stinging in his scar as he left his mother and sister downstairs. He pushed his door open before walking over to his bed, collapsing on top of it without bothering to pull the covers over him.

Several thousands of miles and a few time zones away from Harry, Hermione Granger woke with a start at a loud crashing sound from downstairs at her house. Hermione thought she was hearing things but a second loud crash and blood shrieking scream echoed through the downstairs area of her house. The muggleborn girl quickly got to her feet, pulling out her wand and creeping towards her door. Another scream gave Hermione the incentive to quicken her movement , as she wrenched the door open and made her way down the hallway.

“Mum, Dad,” muttered Hermione uncertainly, leaning over the railing of the stairs and seeing a flash of green light. Hermione panicked, bolting down the stairs, her wand raised high.

As she reached the bottom of the stairs, Hermione nearly tripped over a crumpled object. She looked down and gave a horrified yelp.

The crumpled body of Hermione’s father laid at the bottom of the stairs dead. Struck down by Avada Kedavra, the Killing Curse.

Another scream pierced the air and Hermione leaned around the corner, to see a pair of Death Eaters slumped over her mother, with their wands raised.

“Crucio,” chanted one of the Death Eaters savagely and Hermione could not take any more, as her mother’s screams echoed through her ears. She quickly whipped out her wand and pointed it towards the Death Eater that was punishing her mother.

“Incendio!” cried Hermione, sending a large wall of fire towards the Death Eater’s back. The Death Eater gave a loud, piercing scream and Hermione felt a small vindictive measure of satisfaction as he dropped to the ground.

The other Death Eater turned around. If her mask was off, anyone could have seen a wide grin break out on her face.

“Ah the Mudblood is up to play!” cackled Bellatrix Lestrange. “Ickle little girl thinks she’s brave trying to stop the inevitable, saving her Mummy from her mind going snap. Just to think I was going to be nice and smother you in your own bed.”

Hermione raised her wand but Bellatrix grabbed Hermione’s mother, pulling the weakened woman in front of her.

“You cowardly bitch!” screamed Hermione angrily glaring at Lestrange.

“Hermione, run, save yourself,” gasped her mother in a pained voice.

“Hermione, run, save yourself,” mimicked Lestrange in a sing song, whiny baby voice before cackling madly and then growing serious. “As if it would matter, I’ve brought some friends to play as well.”

Another seven masked Death Eaters stepped from the shadows, and Hermione looked at them, before backing off from them, with her back towards the stairs.

“REDUCTO!” yelled Hermione, blowing a large hole in the floor, causing the Death Eaters to stagger back, shielding their faces from the flying debris. Hermione bolted upstairs, knowing what she must do. She needed to get to her mirror quickly. As much as she hated to rely on Harry, it might be the only way to save her mother.

Hermione yelled as her legs snapped together halfway upstairs. She looked over her shoulder as Lestrange threw her prey down to the ground like an old piece of rubbish. With every fiber of strength she could muster, Hermione dragger her leg locked body up the stairs, towards her room.

As she pulled herself inside, Hermione spotted Lestrange completely reduce the stairs to dust. Lestrange turned her head downstairs to address her fellow Death Eaters.

“Make sure no one comes up here, until I’m done playing with the Mudblood!” yelled Lestrange. “Dispose of her mother.”

Hermione’s heart sank, as she wrenched herself into her room, where an owl was waiting for her on the desk inside her room, sitting along with the neat stacks of books. She narrowed her eyes, as it appeared to be the notice Improper Use of Magic office. This was far from the time to be worried about the Statute of Secrecy.

“Colloportus!” yelled Hermione, sealing her door shut, which should buy her about a minute or so. She did the counter charm to the leg locking curse, before pointing towards her desk “Accio mirror!”

The mirror flew off of her desk, and into her hands.

“HARRY!” yelled Hermione frantically in the mirror and the mist swirled in the mirror. The wood on Hermione’s door splintered and she could see Bellatrix was breaking to. “Harry, please be there, Death Eaters, please answer, please!”

The door blasted open and Bellatrix Lestrange stood in the doorway, with a sickening grin on her face.

“This is the part where you die, Mudblood!” shrieked Bellatrix, raising her wand, but Hermione’s cat, Crookshanks gave a mighty hiss before springing right at Bellatrix’s face, knocking her mask off before sinking his claws into her face. “Get off me, you mangy feline!”

Crookshanks hung on, protecting his master, as Bellatrix struggled to point her wand at the cat, so she could blast him off. Hermione threw herself behind her desk, and looked at the mirror.

“Harry!” yelled Hermione and sure enough, the face of her best friend finally appeared in her mirror. “Death Eaters, my house! Dad’s dead, Mum’s going to be soon if the Death Eaters don’t stop.”

“Stay put, Hermione,” said Harry sternly. “I’m coming.”

Hermione nodded slowly, nearly paralyzed. Her face contorted with fear as she heard a loud hiss and a thump on the floor. Another spell sliced her desk in half. With her face severely scratched, Bellatrix Lestrange stood in front of her, her wand pointed towards Hermione.

“Up!” ordered Bellatrix, and Hermione rose, shaking madly as she saw the body of her cat on the floor, ripped in half by Bellatrix and blood splattered along the floor of her room.

Bellatrix waved her wand at Hermione and Hermione’s wand shot out of her hand, before landing at Bellatrix’s feet. Hermione was too paralyzed in shock to know and the realization sunk in, while she was pretty good when studying out of books, nothing could prepare her for a real life counter with one of Voldemort’s most dangerous and highest ranked Death Eaters.

“Mudbloods should not be allowed to play with such dangerous toys,” lectured Bellatrix in a faux motherly voice, before stomping on Hermione’s wand, snapping it completely in half, thus committing the gravest insult one could towards a magical person.

Hermione edged towards her window instinctively but Bellatrix waved her wand, causing a huge wall of sinister looking black fire to barricade Hermione’s window.

“And here I thought all Gryffindors were brave,” remarked Bellatrix in a completely serious voice before breaking out into a loud round of giggles and then growing suddenly thoughtful. “Or perhaps leeching of Slytherins has allowed you to pick up some survival instincts after all.”

Hermione looked at Bellatrix, wondering where Harry was. She could have sworn with the Portus-Amulet, Harry could transport himself anywhere, no time flat.

“Sonorus,” muttered Bellatrix, pointing her wand at Hermione’s throat before a wide smile appeared on her face. “CRUCIO!”

Thanks to the Sonorus spell, the Mudblood’s screams were multiplied a thousand times, giving Bella a thousand times more pleasure out of torturing her. It was music to her ears.

Harry landed a few miles outside of Hermione’s home. Despite, the Portus-Amulet, Harry couldn’t appear right in Hermione’s house. As he reached forward into putrid smelling air, Harry found that he couldn’t move a step further. The Death Eaters apparently had erected a wall around the parameter of the Granger property, preventing any external interference.

Harry quickly waved his wand, making a few calculations mentally. The wards only kept people out.

With a quick pop, a small raven had no problem flying straight through the wards and towards the Granger residence. Spotting down, the raven Animagus spotted two surly looking Death Eaters standing guard outside.

“Bella takes these Mudblood attacks too far sometimes,” grumbled one of the Death Eaters, that the raven recognized to be Rodolphus Lestrange. “Just go in and exterminate the vermin I say.”

The second Death Eater nodded before looking up.

“That’s odd,” muttered the Death Eater apprehensively.

“What?” demanded Rodolphus.

“A raven, swooping around here,” replied the Death Eater in an unnerved voice. “I wish your old lady would hurry up and just put down the Mudblood, that thing is giving me the creeps.”

“Afraid of a little buzzard, Warrington,” taunted Rodolphus. “You’ll never make it into the Dark Lord’s Inner Circle with that attitude, if you’re panicking during your first assignment.”

“I just wish it was Potter that Bellatrix was torturing in there, that little weasel kicked me off the Quidditch Team,” grunted Warrington savagely. “Replaced me with his girlfriend, the little blood traitor bitch.”

At those words, the raven dived towards Warrington, sinking its beak right into his mask. The mask ripped in two and Warrington gave a mighty scream as the raven gouged his eyes out. Warrington fell to the ground, a great amount of blood oozing from his eye sockets.

“That’s no Animagus,” muttered Rodolphus, blasting the Animagus revealing spell at the bird.

The bird’s body expanded, before falling to the ground on his feet, revealing the form of Harry Potter.

“Potter!” declared Rodolphus happily before pointing his wand and sending a jagged jet of black light towards Harry, but Harry stepped aside and sent a full body bind at Rodolphus, who dodged it. “Just think, I’ll finally outstrip my old battle axe of a wife and be the Dark Lord’s right hand man. It’s always Bella this and Bella that, now the entire world will know Rodolphus Lestrange as the man who brought Harry Potter to the Dark Lord.”

“Don’t count your Phoenixes before they hatch, Mr. Bellatrix Lestrange,” muttered Harry, which caused Rodolphus to flip out, sending a series of curses towards Harry.

“Stand still you little half blood bastard!” grunted Rodolphus but Harry managed to spin around avoiding another volley of spells.

“I don’t have time for this,” replied Harry and sending a vanishing charm towards the Lestrange male.

Rodolphus’s decision to not block the spell was one he regretted. His nose and mouth vanished from his face, giving him nowhere to draw in breath. His lungs tightened and Rodolphus Lestrange slid to the ground, asphyxiated to death from Harry’s rather creative spell work.

A loud scream pierced through the air, causing Harry a slight bit of discomfort in his repaired right ear. Harry blasted the front door off of its hinges, knocking a Death Eater behind it unconscious from the resulting blast.

A group of Death Eaters stood in the hall, there wands held out, pointing towards Harry. Harry felt sickened as he saw the mangled remains of Hermione’s mother, her clothes ripped to shreds and her face completely mutilated. Guilt spread to Harry, as he was too late.

The Death Eaters obviously cared nothing about Harry and looked at him with threatening expressions, their wands held in front of them.

“Put your wand down, kid,” ordered one of the Death Eaters in a pompous voice but Harry whipped his wand around, sending an unusual pattern of spells at the Death Eaters, causing them to scatter slightly. Harry waved his wand around his head, causing two holographic duplicates to materialize. The duplicates moved in either direction, diverting the Death Eater’s attention away from the real Harry Potter. Harry turned back into a raven and flew in the direction of Hermione’s screams.

“There’s two Potter’s now,” declared one of the Death Eaters dumbly.

“Split up and follow them,” suggested Dolohov calmly. “One of them is real, the other is a blasted Hologram. He did this trick before when the Dark Lord stole the scrolls from Hogwarts.”

“Smashing good idea, old bean,” declared Goyle in a cheerful voice.

Hermione laid on the floor of her bedroom, her eye’s barely open. Lestrange drew her wand across Hermione’s forearm, cutting her. Another wave of her wand and Lestrange conjured salt directly inside Hermione’s wounds. The pain was completely unbearable, causing Hermione’s shrieks to be carried for miles.

“Admit it, Mudblood,” declared Bellatrix savagely. “You’re scum and I’m superior to you in every way.”

Hermione responded by spitting right in Bellatrix’s face.

“That was a dumb move,” lectured Bellatrix. “Perhaps another lesson in etiquette, vermin. CRUCIO!”

Hermione felt the urge to claw her own eyes out, as she screamed in pain. She began to feel her sanity and her intellect slowly being stripped away from her. It was only a matter of time before Bellatrix Lestrange turned her into a mindless vegetable.

“Harry!” shrieked Hermione, wishing that her best friend, her brother in every way but blood, was standing right beside her, saving her from this horror.

“No Harry Potter to save you this time, Mudblood,” declared Bellatrix coldly and at that moment, a raven zipped into Hermione’s room, going after Bellatrix Lestrange. Bella sent a spell after the bird, which dodged the curse. “Merlin, Mudblood, how many pets do you have to damn to an early demise?”

The raven dove towards Bellatrix’s hand. For a wild moment, Bellatrix thought it was trying to disarm her.

“AVADA KEDAVRA!” yelled Bellatrix but the bird managed to dodge the killing curse with expert grace, as if it had that particular spell fired at it before.

Bellatrix blinked and Harry Potter stood in front of her, with a determined look on his face.

“An unregistered Animagus, why Potter I didn’t know you had it in you,” cackled Bellatrix, before bowing towards him. “Flaunting Ministry law, you might just be a true Slytherin after all. Or you would be if you didn’t associate with such vermin.”

Bellatrix moved towards Hermione but Harry rushed forward, knocking Bellatrix out of the way with his shoulder

“I killed your husband already tonight Bellatrix, don’t test my patience,” warned Harry, placing himself between Bellatrix and Hermione.

“Ah, that’s no big loss Potter,” said Bellatrix happily. “Roddy never could cut it in the bedroom. His wand work left much to be desired.”

Bellatrix reared her back, cackling like a madwoman. Her lapse of sanity allowed Harry to blast Bellatrix into a wall. A loud crack and Bellatrix slumped against the wall.

Ignoring Bellatrix, Harry leaned over Hermione, with a worried look.

“Hermione?” asked Harry in a shaky voice.

“I’ll live,” muttered Hermione in a weakened voice, almost childish voice as blood dripped from her mouth. “What about Mum? Did you save her?”

Harry didn’t know how to answer Hermione. He signed before opening his mouth but he felt himself getting blasted directly in the back. Harry flew halfway across the room, landing on the ground with a clatter.

“Never turn your back on an enemy Potter, unless they are dead,” lectured Bellatrix. “Surely your Mudblood Mummy must have mentioned that to you.”

Harry sent a spell towards Bellatrix but Bellatrix ducked down, before pointing her wand at Hermione.

“I grow tired of this little game Potter,” said Bellatrix in a bored voice, yawning. “Let’s see how long your Mudblood friend can hold her breath before she is crushed to death.”

A set of sinister black cords shot from Bellatrix’s wand, wrapping themselves around Hermione’s body. Harry’s heart sank; Bellatrix had learned another trick from her master, as this was the same method that Voldemort killed his Muggle grandparents.

“HERMIONE DON’T MOVE, DON’T BREATH!” ordered Harry without a second of hesitation as Bellatrix Lestrange removed the fire surrounding the window before throwing herself outside the window to the ground below, cackling madly as she cushioned the ground for her descent.

Harry didn’t have time to pursue Bellatrix, as the black cords were contracting around Hermione simply because of her body heat. Quickly, Harry sent a jet of cool water at Hermione, loosening the cords just enough to allow them to be sliced from around Hermione’s body. Hermione’s eyes were shut, but she was still breathing and there was a pulse, however faint.

Moments after Harry had safely removed the ropes from around his friend, a group of Aurors, led by Rufus Scrimgeour arrived at the stairs.

“Merlin, Harry Potter!” yelled one of the Aurors, pointing at Harry and a few of the Aurors began gawking at his scar.

Harry noticed that Nymphadora Tonks was with the Aurors that had arrived on the scene, and she rolled her eyes at the antics of her fellow Aurors.

“Harry, what happened?” asked Tonks, looking at Hermione’s battered body.

“Bellatrix Lestrange happened,” replied Harry shortly, causing the young Auror’s eyes to widen in horror. Harry turned his attention to Scrimgeour. “Rufus, there were at least eight Death Eaters downstairs.”

“They were in the process of retreating when we came here, Harry,” replied the Head of the Auror Office. “All but two escaped, and that’s not counting the two that were dead.”

“Scorched pretty bad that one was,” remarked a gruff voice and Harry looked up, to see the legendary Mad-Eye Moody standing there.

“Ah, Moody, I was under the assumption that you didn’t approve of the Ministry,” declared Auror Dawlish.

“I don’t but I couldn’t very well stand there and let that scum have free reign against innocent people,” answered Moody. “Of course, the Death Eaters had to put up wards.”

Harry stepped back. He heard rumors that Moody was close with Dumbledore so he had to be cautious not to let Moody know any more than he already knew.

“We can discuss this later,” remarked Harry, pointing towards Hermione. “In case, you couldn’t tell, my friend’s just barely clinging onto life.”

“Healers are on their way Harry,” replied Tonks calmly, as she looked out the window. “In fact, they’re coming outside. They’re going to be able to take her to St. Mungos for treatment.”

Harry walked from the room, as the Healers walked up the repaired stairways. If he cared, Harry would have thought the Aurors had repaired the stairs before they came up, but he walked down the stairs. Harry had a feeling something like this might happen, but when it was staring in front of his face, it was pretty disturbing. The Death Eaters went after Hermione simply because she was an easy target and the only magical person in her house, where his other friends were pureblood and better protected. Voldemort could have decided to send his minions after Ginny for the simple fact it was no secret that Harry loved her and would go to pieces if something happened. Yet, Ginny wouldn’t have been easy prey, as there were many protective wards around the Burrow, not to mention many capable wizards and one extremely capable witch inside. Ginny’s oldest brother, Bill, mentioned to Harry that he had added a few nasty surprises for any Death Eaters that might, based on some of the things he encountered during his time as a curse breaker at Gringotts.

In the end, Voldemort had picked the easiest target to attack and send a message towards Harry. Harry had heard the message loud and clear. He wasn’t shocked that Voldemort had struck. Saddened yes, but not shocked. He almost suspected something like this might happen. The only good thing was that Voldemort no doubt intended Hermione to die and could not have foreseen her having a quick way to communicate Harry through the mirrors.

Another pair of Healers was stabilizing the Death Eater that Hermione burned in the battle, under the guise of an Auror, who looked ready to curse the Death Eater if he tried any sudden moves.

Two other Aurors was dragging the Death Eater that Harry had knocked out when he blasted the door off of its hinges.

“Ah, Mr. Potter,” said one of the Aurors. “Excellent bit of work knocking this one out.”

The Death Eater glared at Harry from behind his mask, before the mask fell to the floor. Harry recognized the Death Eater as his own former fanatical Quidditch Captain, Marcus Flint.

“Now what do you know about You-Know-Who’s plans, scumbag!” barked the Auror.

“I know the Dark Lord is planning to exterminate all the Mudbloods, starting with Potter’s little friend there,” replied Flint in a hoarse voice. “The Dark Lord ain’t telling me much else”

Harry considered Flint for a few seconds but something told him that Flint wasn’t important enough for Voldemort to tell him anything that the world at large couldn’t guess.

“The Dark Lord will restructure the world, and there’s nothing you can do, Potter!” taunted Flint. “Granger was first, every Mudblood is doomed to be put down like the animals they are”

Flint had no idea that Hermione barely survived and Harry was not going to be kind enough to educate him on that fact.

“It’s obvious this one isn’t important enough to know anything,” remarked the Auror. “A nice cell in Azkaban should give him plenty of time to think about how he was wrong in joining You-Know-Who.”

Harry watched as Flint was dragged away by the Death Eaters. There was little doubt in Harry’s mind that Marcus Flint was nothing more than another warm body in Voldemort’s plans for domination. The other Death Eater’s burns were somewhat healed and he was carried off for questions.

Tonks walked towards Harry and Harry turned to her, his face looking tired and worried.

“Well?” prompted Harry.

“Hermione’s been stabilized and taken to St Mungo’s,” said Tonks somberly. “Bellatrix did quite a number on her and she’s unconscious right now.”

“Is she going to recover?” asked Harry.

“The Healers didn’t say,” replied Tonks. “It’s a damn good thing you showed up through. The third attack on a muggleborn today, the Ministry is in disarray and this is the only one where we managed to bring Death Eaters in. Scrimgeour was raging on all of us today, saying that if he could, he’d replace the lot of is with an army of Harry Potter clones.”

“I’m flattered,” said Harry flatly before waving a privacy barrier between himself in Tonks. “We need to get all of the muggleborns of Great Britain to a safe location where Voldemort can’t get them.”

“All of them!” exclaimed Tonks in a shocked voice.

“Yes, Tonks, all of them,” repeated Harry. “The others in the resistance group need to be contacted and this needs to be done underneath the nose of the Ministry, Voldemort, and Dumbledore.”

“Why not get Scrimgeour to help, you’re on first name terms now it looks like it?” asked Tonks in a confused voice.

“There are leaks in the Ministry, if Voldemort knows what I’m up to before it’s done, my goose will be cooked,” said Harry. “It’s not the most insane idea that I considered, I’ll tell that much.”

“I’m almost afraid to ask, but what was your other idea, Harry?” asked Tonks.

“Get all the Muggles in Britain to safety, along with all of the muggleborns,” replied Harry dully. “Imagine the explaining that I’d have to do for that one. So I’m going to settle for just the muggleborns and their immediate families.”

Harry took a deep breath.

“I’m technically supposed to be in my room resting, Mum will freak out if she finds out that I went after Death Eaters after what happened to me today,” said Harry. “Tonks, I need you to contact the others and inform them of the plan. Execute it as quickly as you can and report back to me when it’s successful.”

“Harry I…” started Tonks but Harry just raised his hand.

“Get them to one of the safe houses that is set up for the evacuation should Voldemort take over,” said Harry firmly. “I hope you don’t disappoint me, Nymphadora.”

It was a measure of how much Tonks respected Harry that she did not curse him halfway across the country for calling her by her first name.

“I need to be going, good luck, tell everyone to be careful,” said Harry and he walked to the room, before pressing his Portus-Amulet, vanishing into mid air and back to his room to try and get some rest.

“Be careful he says,” muttered Tonks, shaking her head in irritation. “After he goes after a dozen Death Eaters, without any back up at all and then lectures me about being careful.”

Still, Tonks set out to do exactly what the sixteen year old wizard had asked her to do. It was a sad indictment of the magical world when a teenager was the best hope to vanquish He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named. A very capable sixteen year old, but that just proved the whispers that the Ministry was damaged beyond full repair from the administrations of Malfoy and Fudge and would not withstand a full on assault.

Albus Dumbledore bent over a battered diary with the words “T.M. Riddle” barely visible on the side. Over Dumbledore’s shoulder, there was a cabinet that contained the Ravenclaw pensieve that he once snuck out of Lestrange Manor. The other important item in the Headmaster’s cabinet was a box of very important memories that he ripped from Lily Potter’s mind, before he blocked the rest of her memory and left her to die. Unfortunately, Lily still lived, despite with ten percent of her memories gone. The ten percent that was crucial to divining the truth about everything. Truth that Dumbledore could ill afford to let the world to know. Dumbledore kept those memories safely in his office as a reminder to himself to be more discreet and cover all of his tracks from events in his past.

The Headmaster examined the diary closely, as Severus Snape sat across from him in a wooden chair, with a battered expression on his face.

“Headmaster, I really think the diary has been destroyed beyond all repair,” injected Snape.

“No, just the bond connection the girl and Tom,” muttered Dumbledore. “The sixteen year old spirit of Lord Voldemort is still alive and well in this diary and if I can modify it property, Voldemort will dance like a puppet on a string.”

Snape said nothing. Dumbledore’s failure to mold Harry Potter into his tool had obviously sent the old man into the deep end of the insanity pool. Trying to control the Dark Lord was his latest idea and somehow, Dumbledore had got the notion in his head that if he made some alterations to the diary, he would have the Dark Lord jammed under his thumb.

“Severus, it seems to me that you are under a great amount of strain maintaining both your loyalty to myself and towards Lord Voldemort,” said Dumbledore thoughtfully.

“It’s not much a problem, Headmaster,” replied Snape.

“Yet, there is a problem and you have been helpful for the past sixteen years,” replied Dumbledore. “I could release you from our agreement, from the Unbreakable Vow. After all, I am confident that I no longer require your services after this coming year at Hogwarts.”

“There is a way to release me from the Vow?” asked Snape.

“If it is mutually agreed by both individuals partaking in the Vow, then yes there is, Severus,” answered Dumbledore. “It may sting for a few minutes, but it is safe to safe your freedom may be worth it. All I ask is but one thing of you, Severus.”

“Name it Headmaster,” said Snape, a hopeful look spreading across his face at only being obligated to serve one megalomaniac lunatic.

“Kill Lily Potter,” responded Dumbledore curtly causing a sour look to appear on Snape’s face. “I trust this will not be an issue, Severus.”

“No, Headmaster, it’s not,” answered Snape in an emotionless tone of voice.
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