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Prisoners

By Katheryn J. Avila

Romance / Drama

Chapter 1

Chapter 1

They came in the night, the Death Eaters. For a long time I thought that Riddle's death meant I was safe, meant we were safe. I guess I was wrong. He still had some followers left, no matter how hard the aurors tried to capture them all. It had been years, and yet Harry and Ron would still go unseen for months, just from the sheer effort going into hunting down those who were still loyal to him. I was asleep, when they came, relaxed in my false sense of security. I had the basic wards up around my flat, but I guess that wasn't enough. Not only that, but they'd managed to get through the personal guard that Harry and Ron had acquired for me. I didn't hear them until it was too late, didn't see the flash of green that took the guard's life until after the figures were already in my bedroom, and I was struggling to grab my wand from under the pillow behind me.

CRASH!

With a wordless wave of his wand, the figure closest to the bed made me freeze in place, bound by invisible ropes and restraints, simultaneously throwing me across the room, sending me on a direct collision path to my vanity mirror. Pain erupted where the broken glass touched my skin. Panic threatened to overwhelm me, but I couldn't show it. My mind flashed back to the moments I spent in Malfoy Manor, helpless and tortured by Bellatrix. I didn't like remembering, but in that moment the same sense of dread that had taken over then was threatening to burst through once more. I'd heard what the Death Eaters had taken to doing most recently, no matter how many times Ron and Harry had tried to keep me from it. They were kidnapping muggleborns, doing unspeakable things to anyone they managed to capture. We knew it was only a matter of time before they found their way to me, but I never through it'd be so soon, or that they'd have anyone really willing to come after me.

In moments, I was blinded. As I struggled to stand from the broken mirror, they bound me once more, casted a Stupefy, and the world went black.

When I came to, they wasted no time in making me walk. Completely disoriented, I had no idea where I was. They must have placed a spell on my eyes, because I couldn't see, despite the lack of blind fold or bag over my head. The Death Eater didn't speak, simply dragging me by the arm. My entire body felt numb, limp as I struggled to keep up. My feet were cold, and I realized we were in some kind of dungeon, the stone freezing to the touch. A metallic slide and clang signaled the opening of some kind of door. He threw me inside without a word, slamming it shut behind me. I almost toppled completely forward, my body no longer supported by my captor.

"Don't worry, I've got you." His voice came from somewhere in the dark, along with the rest of him. The next thing I registered was his smell as I collided with his chest. The faint traces of a cologne I could almost recognize, but couldn't quite place. He was familiar. A muggleborn I met at Hogwarts, maybe? His scent definitely brought Hogwarts to mind. Even though I had no idea who he was, I snuggled closer, the chill of the dungeon threatening to pierce right through me.

"Wh-Where are we?" He stiffened when I spoke, though he was, just a moment before, embracing me in response to my movements.

"In a dungeon." His tone was familiar, too. A face came to mind, but I pushed the image away just as quickly. There's no way.

"Obviously." After a moment, I regained my bearings, standing upright on my own, hands outstretched to feel my surroundings. The room was quite small, would probably be too crowded if they put another prisoner in here. Every wall felt pretty much the same as the floor did, stone, cold, and jagged. One of the walls had a metal door, and it seemed the only way in or out of the room. My legs bumped against a cot, and I didn't realize my fellow prisoner had decided to sit down, as I once again fell on him. "Sorry."

"Did they blind you, too?" Despite the stiffness with which he'd regarded me a moment before, he positioned me gently so I was sitting beside him.

"Y-Yes." My teeth chattered, and once again I was made hyper-aware of how little I actually wore, making me grateful that the man in the room with me had also been blinded. The tank top and small shorts did nothing to keep me warm. Just as that thought hit me, I felt the warm weight of a cloak over my shoulders. Without thinking about it, I took the edges and wrapped myself in it. "Th-Thanks."

He didn't respond, but I felt him shift his weight on the cot, until it was no longer there. His steps carried him to the opposite side of the room. He wasn't exactly far away now, but I felt the absence of his body heat, as I suddenly got colder. I listened as he reached the wall opposite from me, and a small scrape of his shoe and rustle of cloth later he had set himself up there, probably sitting against the wall. The sole of his shoe, cold, like the dungeon, grazed my toe. He was either quite tall, or the room was even smaller than I'd originally thought. As soon as our feet made contact, another scrape of shoes on stone echoed through the chamber, as he pulled his feet away from me.

I'm not sure when I fell asleep, but sometime later I awoke, lying on the cot. I almost started to panic at my lack of sight, until the events of my capture came back to me. Oddly enough, this helped me relax. I knew I was in danger, but at least I had an explanation. I still had the cloak wrapped around me.

"Hello? Are you still there?" My voice was groggy from sleep. How long had I slept?

"Unfortunately." It sounded as if he were still in the same spot against the wall.

"How long have I been asleep?" I sat up, trying to push away the dizziness that fogged my mind.

"A few hours."

"Oh." An awkward silence threatened to fall over us. My head was a bit clearer now that I'd slept some, and possible plans of escape were already beginning to form. "How long have you been here?"

"Long enough." A man of few words. Maybe he wasn't the person I'd first imagined. His clipped tone was starting to grate on my nerves. Again, the heavy silence almost took over.

"Don't you want your cloak back?"

"Hold onto it." He barely let me finish asking the question. I sighed, knowing full well that he barely wanted to speak, but unable to stay quiet myself. If I stayed quiet, it was almost like acknowledging defeat – something I was unwilling to do.

"Aren't you cold?"

"No." Although I couldn't see his face, or read his eyes, I knew he was lying. Without speaking, I got up, sure that he could hear my movements. Carefully avoiding where I thought his feet would be, I walked along one of the walls and made my way to the spot where he sat. "What are you doing?"

"You're lying." I crouched down to where he was, sliding my hand down the wall until it met his shoulder. Again, he stiffened, but I didn't care. He'd helped me, even if it was only a little, so I intended to return the favor. "We'll be no good if we die from hypothermia. It's too cold down here for either of us." Eventually, my hand found his and I made him stand, leading him back to the cot. "And sitting on the floor won't help either."

After an awkward shuffle, I managed to get him to sit back on the cot, wrapping the cloak around the both of us the best I could. "Why are you doing this?"

For a moment, I was distracted. I'd placed my head I the space between his shoulder and neck, and I could feel his pulse against my skin, quickening at the contact. He stiffened again.

"So neither one of us dies from hypothermia. The most effective way of keeping warm is by staying close, and we need to keep warm in order to think straight. Otherwise, we're not going to be able to escape."

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