Chapter 19 – Ministry of Magic
Harry ran towards the window, vanishing the glass with a wave of his hand. He leaped through it and as he was plummeting to the ground, he changed into his animagus form. He then spread his great gryphon wings and flew off towards Hogsmeade as fast as he could go. He flew past the Hogwarts grounds and over the Black Lake then landed at the train station in Hogsmeade.
He changed back into his human form and immediately apparated to the dark corridor he knew so well in his repeated dream. Unfortunately, he didn’t realize that the wards in place would not allow that. He found himself bouncing off the wards and landing in a dark alley in the middle of London. He was lucky he didn’t splinch himself, he thought. Having never been to the Ministry, he had no way of knowing how to get in. Thinking for a second he remembered that his Grandpa was once an Unspeakable.
Harry pulled out his watch and ported over to Potter Place. He landed in the Receiving Room and explained to Andrew quickly that he had an emergency and then apparated to the Study.
Appearing in front of the portraits of his grandparents, he waved off their pleasantries explaining that Sirius was in danger and he had to get into the Department of Mysteries right away to save him.
“Grandpa, can you please tell me the quickest way to get to your offices? I realize this could be a trap but I’m more than ready to face them. Besides, if Sirius is really in danger then I am likely his only hope. I have to go find out if they have him. I haven’t been able to reach him to verify his whereabouts. The vision I got was the same place my repeating dream kept showing me. I saw him in a large room with high shelves full of small, glowing orbs.”
“That’s the Room of Prophecy,” said Henry. “Alright Harry, listen closely and I will walk you right through it.”
Harry nodded signifying he was ready.
“Normally, from here I could floo right into the Department of Mysteries because I was an Unspeakable. Since you’re not an Unspeakable you will have to floo straight into the Ministry of Magic atrium, just say ‘Ministry of Magic’ and when you arrive take the lift to the ninth floor, which will be my department. After you go through the black door, it will get a little tricky. Now before I give you the remaining instructions I’m going to also tell you how to get into the offices where my other portrait resides because I will be over there after I finish explaining just in case you have any more questions.”
“Thank you Grandpa.”
“My pleasure, now here is what you have to do…”
Harry listened to everything his grandpa explained to him then apparated to the Leaving Room where he said a quick hello and goodbye to Carolyn before he took the floo to the Ministry of Magic.
Harry came out of one of the many fireplaces at the Ministry. He turned and strode toward the lifts. He noticed that there was no one on duty at the security desk, which caused him to be even more wary of what might be going on. He continued on toward the lifts and stepped inside one that opened its doors with a loud clang. He then pressed the number 9 button. The lift started with a jolt and rattled along carrying him to the ninth floor. It was quite noisy in Harry’s opinion although he would readily admit he had not been on many lifts. The lift stopped and the doors clanged open loudly again. A female voice said “Department of Mysteries.”
Harry stepped off the lift and into the corridor. He turned toward the black door that he recognized from his dream. Walking up to it, he saw that it opened on its own accord as he got close. He walked on through the door and it closed behind him. He found himself in a large circular room that was all black and had many doors with no handles. The room began spinning with the doors going round and round.
“This is where it gets tricky, Grandpa said,” Harry muttered to himself.
Harry pulled out his wand and did the complicated wand movement Henry had shown him all the while wishing to go to the Room of Prophecy. The room stopped spinning and Harry instantly knew which door he needed. Turning he went through the door on his immediate left.
Harry recognized the room right away and then noticed as he became more accustomed to the light that the room was filled with all different kinds of clocks and all were ticking, the sound filling the room completely. Harry went straight through the room and into the next one just as his dream dictated.
The next room was the Room of Prophecy. It was amazing how high the shelves were and the amount of small, dusty, glass orbs on the shelves. Harry looked at the row number he was on. It said 53. He was looking for 97 and any sign of Sirius. He looked to see which direction he needed to go. He found 54 and headed that way carefully looking down each row he passed.
Suddenly he stopped. Realizing he needed to be more careful, he refocused and stilled his mind. He was so concerned over Sirius he was forgetting himself and not truly focused. If he was to help Sirius, he needed to get his act together. After refocusing and stilling his mind, Harry then turned himself invisible, silenced his shoes and clothes, and then continued forward again.
Harry came upon row 97 but still no Sirius. He checked down each connecting and nearby row but still no sign of him. Coming back to row 97 Harry saw that one of the orbs was getting brighter the closer he came to it. Standing on his tip toes Harry was able to read the description on the orb:
S. P. T. to A. P. W. B. D.
and (?) Harry Potter
Harry looked around him to see once again if anyone else was there. He had a feeling that there was but he couldn’t see anyone. He reached out with his magic and found at least a dozen magical people, all of them dark and coming his way. Harry walked back down the row a bit until he was sure they would not be able to see him. He then became visible again and walked back to the orb, repeating his movements when he first discovered it. Then, feeling a little daring and wanting to see what they would do Harry reached up and picked the orb up from the shelf and started blowing the dust off of it.
“Thank you Potter,” a voice said behind him. “Now, turn around slowly and hand that to me.”
Harry turned and saw that Death Eaters now surrounded him. Lucius Malfoy was the one that spoke. Bellatrix Lestrange was standing just to the right and behind Lucius. He also recognized Augustus Rookwood from their altercation in Diagon Alley, wondering why he was here instead of in Askaban. He could tell one was Crabbe senior just from the resemblance. Another one was likely Theodore Nott’s father. He also recognized Macnair who was the one that was supposed to execute Buckbeak, a job he never got to do. Harry didn’t recognize all the others but he knew all of these together would be a real challenge for him. He felt himself up to the task but reminded himself to be very careful and alert at all times. These were likely some of Voldemort’s best.
“So, this was just a trap?” asked Harry calmly.
“I’m afraid so Potter, now give me the prophecy,” replied Lucius.
“That was very clever making me believe Sirius was in danger. I tried to check and see if this was a trap but I couldn’t get in touch with my godfather so I had to come check just in case it was true.”
“Of course you did. That’s how the Dark Lord planned it.”
“So Voldemort wants this prophecy?” Harry heard some hisses.
“HOW DARE YOU SPEAK HIS NAME!” yelled Bellatrix.
“Calm down witch.” said Harry calmly. “Of course I’ll speak his name. Just because you worship at the feet of that lunatic doesn’t mean I will. Besides Voldemort isn’t his real name. His real name his Tom Marvolo Riddle, son of a pureblood witch, Merope Gaunt, and a Muggle father whom he was named after. He’s a half-blood just like me. So, his real name is Tom Riddle. Did you know that Tom Marvolo Riddle is an anagram for ‘I am Lord Voldemort?’ Look it up. Tom told me this himself when I was in my second year down in the Chamber of Secrets.”
"ACCIO PROPHECY,” shouted Bellatrix.
"Protego,” answered Harry quickly with his wand. Of course, Harry had already put a shield around himself and the orb wandlessly. The summoning spell just bounced off. Harry didn’t want them suspecting any of his power yet though.
“So, why does Tom want this prophecy? It looks like it’s about him too. It says ‘Dork Lord’ and then ‘Harry Potter’… oops I guess that says ‘Dark Lord’ not ‘Dork Lord’… my mistake. It’s pretty dusty.” Harry said with a smile.
"STUPEFY,” shouted Bellatrix.
"Protego,” answered Harry quickly again.
“NO!” shouted Lucius at Bellatrix. “Stop it. We cannot damage the prophecy.”
Harry had aimed the curse as it bounced off his shield toward the Death Eater on his right. The Death Eater went down fast. Harry was hoping they would forget about him so he would have one less to worry about but the one next to him enervated him right away.
“So, why does Tom want this prophecy so bad?” asked Harry.
“Don’t toy with us Potter,” replied Lucius.
“I’m not toying with you, Mr. Malfoy. I genuinely would like to know. No one has told me that I have a prophecy about me. Until I saw it here on the shelf I didn’t know it even existed.”
“Dumbledore never told you about this prophecy? That the reason you have that scar is in the very prophecy that you hold in your hand?”
“No, he hasn’t deemed to share that with me.”
“Well, that explains some things like the reason you didn’t come sooner when you were having that dream over and over.”
“So, Voldemort wants this prophecy but he wants me to get it for him? Why?”
“The only people allowed to retrieve a prophecy from the Department of Mysteries are the ones for whom the prophecy was made. Since the Ministry conveniently refuses to believe the Dark Lord has returned, he much prefers you come and get it.”
“And he expected that I would just hand it over to you? A bit presumptuous isn’t he?”
“Stop stalling and hand it over Potter,” Lucius said with his palm toward Harry.
“Not in your wildest dreams,” answered Harry just before he leaped high in the air and did a spinning back kick to the chin of a Death Eater on his left and then spun hitting the one next to him with a spinning back fist. Both went down hard. Completing his spin, Harry put up a shield and then exploded the shelves above Lucius and Bellatrix heads. Next, he shrunk the orb wandlessly and placed it in his pocket. His shield gonged with a couple of spells from across the way. Diving under four spells he stunned the three that were on his right originally but were directly in front of him now.
Harry raised another shield as he came to a halt. He blasted the shelves above the ones opposite Lucius and Bellatrix. There were four over there. Lucius and Bellatrix were still fighting to get out from under the falling prophecies when Harry stepped in front of them and stunned both. He whirled around and focused on the four fighting to get out from under the other avalanche he caused. He stunned all four in less than a second and then fired off another stunner at the Death Eater down one row about twenty feet away. He was staying back as instructed and lobbing spells. So far, he never hit Harry once. Harry’s stunner was powered a bit because he fully expected the Death Eater to put up a shield. Harry’s stunner blasted right through his shield and sent him careening ten feet back into a shelf where he also created an avalanche of prophecies to fall on him. Turning he stunned the first two he had taken down just to make sure they stayed out longer. He then tied them all up.
Seeing that he got them all, Harry decided it was time to get out of there. What he didn’t see was a rat scurrying around the room avoiding detection and falling prophecies. Harry found the exit into the room of clocks and made his way back to the large black circular room.
Hermione, Ron, Ginny, Neville, and Luna were just standing there looking out the window in the common room that Harry had just jumped out of. They saw his gryphon rise into the air and head off towards Hogsmeade.
“Come on we have to either find Dumbledore or get word to him and the Order. Harry might need some help if it’s a trap,” said Hermione.
Everyone started leaving except Ginny. She just stood there.
“Ginny, are you coming?” asked Ron. “We have to help Harry.”
“Exactly, I’m going to help Harry, Ron.”
“What are you talking about?” asked Ron.
“Ginny, what are you planning on doing?” asked Neville.
“Just watch,” she replied.
Suddenly Ginny disappeared and in her place stood a large Harpy eagle.
“Ginny, this is your first full transformation. Congratulations by the way. However, you have not practiced flying yet. What you are about to do could be dangerous,” added Hermione.
Ginny flew awkwardly up to the window, turned and looked at her brother and friends, then leaped out the window.
All of them ran to the window and saw her struggling to fly. She flew some but had to land on the ground. She hopped around a bit then took off again and landed a couple times more before she finally started gaining altitude and flew off toward Hogsmeade.
The friends all looked at each other then ran to find help. They didn’t find Dumbledore but did find McGonagall. They told her what was going on and she sent an owl to find Dumbledore and get him the message. She instructed them to go back to their common room and wait for her to update them.
They went back to their common room but didn’t like it. They wanted to help. Now they were worried about Ginny as well. They sat around for a while but no news was forth coming.
After about thirty minutes, Hermione stood up and said, “I’ve had enough of this. I’m going to go help Harry someway, somehow. Who has an idea of how to get to Hogsmeade so we can floo to the Ministry of Magic?”
“Brooms,” Ron replied. “Hermione, go get Ginny’s broom and I’ll get mine. We can double up and fly the four of us out this window to Hogsmeade.”
Hermione just stared at Ron for a second.
“Well?” asked Ron.
“Ron, you’re a genius!” Hermione ran over, grabbed his face, and kissed him on the lips.
“Stop kidding around Hermione!” said Ron.
“Ron, I’m not kidding around and I’m going to go get Ginny’s broom to prove it. You go get yours and we’ll meet back here. Stay here Neville and Luna. We’ll be right back,” she said as she hurried up the staircase.
Ron and Hermione returned after a minute with brooms in hand. Hermione handed Ginny’s broom to Neville.
“Here Neville, I’m not a good flier so I’m going to ride with Ron. You take Luna with you.”
“But, I’m not sure about carrying a passenger, Hermione. I‘ve never done that.”
“Don’t worry Neville,” said Luna taking the broom from his hand. “I’ve done this before and we’ll be perfectly fine. You can ride with me.”
Ron climbed onto his broom and Luna climbed onto Ginny’s broom. “Alright Neville climb on back and put your arms around my waist and hang on so you don’t fall off.”
Neville swallowed hard and climbed on behind Luna. Hermione climbed on behind Ron and scooted up real close wrapping her arms around his waist and laying her head against his back. Ron felt a chill go through his entire body when she did that.
“Neville, quit being shy and grab a hold of me so we can go.” Neville wrapped his arms around Luna’s waist and held on. “Not that tight,” Luna said with a strained voice. Neville let go quickly but she grabbed his arms and started laughing as she put his hands back around her waist. “Just kidding Neville, you were doing just fine. I couldn’t help myself because you’re so easy to tease.”
Neville’s face turned a deep red but he hung onto Luna as she followed Ron out the window that no one had bothered to repair yet. They flew to The Three Broomsticks and then used the floo there to go to the Ministry of Magic. They all came out of a different fireplace.
“Ron, we don’t know where Harry went. This place is too big. We may never find him,” Hermione said excitedly.
“Calm down Hermione,” Ron said putting his hand on her shoulder. “I know where he went.”
“How do you know, Ronald?” asked Luna.
“Harry said that the door he kept dreaming about is the same door Dad was guarding when the snake attacked him. That door is the door to the Department of Mysteries on the 9th floor.”
Hermione just looked at Ron in wonderment but he didn’t notice as he had already walked off towards the lifts. They hurried up and caught up with him just as he neared the first lift that clanged open its doors for them. Sitting there next to the lifts was none other than Ginny. She looked like she was in a lot of pain. Ron ran over, picked her up, and hugged her.
“Ginny, don’t ever do that again. I was so worried about you,” Ron said hugging her tighter. Ginny let out a cry of pain and he set her down easy.
“What’s wrong Ginny?” asked Hermione.
“I flew all the way here as fast as I could go and my back is killing me where my wings were. It hurts so much. Plus I don’t know where Harry went once he got here.”
“9th floor, Ginny. He went to the Department of Mysteries,” answered Neville.
“Are you going to stay here Ginny or do you want to come with us?” asked Ron.
“I’m coming with you.”
Neville and Ron helped her up and onto the lift. Climbing aboard, Neville pressed the number 9 and off they went.
They exited the lift as the female voice said “Department of Mysteries.”
After they went through the black door Ginny decided she needed another rest and also thought it wise someone stay here in case Harry came back out one of the doors. The rest of them decided to look for Harry. They started trying different doors after they stopped spinning. Ginny rested on the cold black floor wishing the pain would go away.
Hermione, Ron, Neville, and Luna had only been gone about five minutes when a door opened and out walked Harry. He saw Ginny lying on the floor and rushed over to her.
“Ginny! Are you alright? Are you hurt?”
“Harry, thank Merlin you’re okay. I was so worried about you that I fully changed into my eagle and flew all the way here. My back is killing me now where my wings were. Hermione, Ron, Neville, and Luna went through one of those doors looking for you but I’ve no idea which one because they keep spinning around. I’m sorry Harry I can’t move. I’m too tired and my back hurts too much. You go find them without me while I wait here.”
Harry thought for a second.
“Ginny, I want you to put your hands around my neck and hang on. I’m going to stand us up.”
“Oh no, Harry, that will hurt too much.”
“Ginny, trust me,” he said staring into her chocolate brown eyes.
Ginny saw those deep pools of green that were Harry’s eyes and could not bring herself to disappoint him. No matter how much it hurt she raised her arms and grabbed Harry behind the head with both hands. Harry stood up and brought Ginny with him. She let out a small cry of pain but held back for Harry’s sake. It hurt a lot.
Holding on to Ginny, Harry took out his wand and waved a complicated pattern. This prevented the room from spinning until he released it. He walked Ginny backwards over to the wall and leaned her up against it. He then turned her around so that she was facing the wall. He lifted her hands and arms above her head and placed them on the wall so that her arms were stretched up above her head. He then reached up under the back of her jumper until he found her bra. He undid the clasp and moved it out of the way. He heard a soft “oh” from Ginny. He then put both hands on her bare back where the wings would have been.
When Harry touched her back with his hands, she felt a chill go all the way through her body at his touch. She was thinking, ”This isn’t so bad.” Harry then let his diagnostic magic flow. He found the issues and then let his healing magic flow through his hands into her back. He noticed her magic core was down some as well so he bumped that back up a good bit. He heard a big sigh from Ginny.
After about five seconds, he removed his hands from her back. He was just about to clasp her bra again and pull her jumper back down when one of the doors burst open and out poured two of the Death Eaters he had put down earlier. He grabbed Ginny and shoved her through a door that was close. Harry quickly put up a shield as two stunners headed his way. He stepped to the side of the shield and cast two rapid but powerful Expulsos at the men. Both were hit and slammed into the wall five feet behind them. Harry heard bones breaking as they were forced back hard into the wall. Neither one got back up.
Harry started the room spinning again, then quickly followed Ginny through the door he’d shoved her through. He came to an abrupt halt as he saw Ginny fly back through the air, doing a backwards flip and trying to land on her feet but only succeeded in breaking her ankle. She let out a scream then let go with a series of spells that the one Death Eater she was fighting couldn’t handle. Harry noticed when she finished he had giant bat bogies coming out of his nose, his right leg was sliced to the bone, and his left shoulder and arm were hanging weird like they had been crushed. He just stood there staring at the short red head that had done all that to him. Ginny took mercy on him and stunned him. Well, not too much mercy. He did fly back about five feet, slamming into a desk headfirst.
Ginny then sat down on the floor, grabbed her ankle, and cried. Harry walked over to her and sat down next to her ankle.
“There, there little darling. You did quite well dispatching that Death Eater. I’m sorry you broke your ankle but I can fix that. Just don’t go making a habit out of getting hurt.”
Ginny stuck her tongue out at him.
Harry chuckled then gently put his hand on her ankle. Ginny saw a white light under Harry’s hand and suddenly she hurt no more. Harry removed his hand and her ankle was perfectly healed and back to normal.
Ginny stood up and started taking off her jumper. She laid it over a chair then started removing her bra.
“Hang on a second Ginny. What exactly are you doing?”
“I’m trying to fix my clothes!” she said in an exasperated tone holding her bra up to him. “Do you remember when you undid this?”
Harry nodded his head in an affirmative manner trying not to look at Ginny’s breasts but failing miserably.
“Well, you grabbed me and shoved me through that door. That caused major problems since my bra was unfastened and my jumper was up. Everything got all twisted and tangled up. When I started trying to put myself together that no account Death Eater attacked me causing me to break my ankle. I barely got a shield up in time. After all that my clothes, and especially my bra, were completely out of whack. I’m starting over so I can straighten it all out. Stare at me all you want. I’m too upset to care.”
Harry, realizing what he was doing, quickly turned around with his back to Ginny to give her some privacy.
“Harry, you need to turn back around because you can’t see the entire room looking that way. Turn back around and keep an eye out for any more Death Eaters that may show up. The last thing I need is another interruption before I get this done,” she said getting her bra back in the right place and adjusted. “Besides, I need you to fasten my bra back again. You undid it so you have to put it back.”
Harry turned back around to see Ginny staring at him with just a loose bra on with her hands on her hips. Harry chuckled and walked over to Ginny
“You are enjoying this way too much young lady,” he said turning her around so he could fasten the bra in the back.
“That may be but you’re not getting out of it, Mr. Potter. By the way, I’m not sure what you did to me in that round room with all the doors but I feel like I could take on an army. Thanks for taking my pain away and fixing my ankle too.”
“You’re welcome, Miss Weasley. That’s likely the boost to your magical core I gave you.” Harry fastened the bra for her then stepped back and took another look around the room. It was odd. It looked familiar. No. Not familiar but something his grandpa told him…. Oh yeah, this is the way to the offices.
“Hey Gin,” Harry said looking back at her. She had just got her jumper back on and pulled down when she shivered slightly at the use of that name again by Harry. “Grandpa gave me some great instructions that have been helpful. He told me he would go to his portrait here and wait in case I needed more help. He told me how to get to the offices where his portrait is and I believe they’re right through that door over there. Maybe he’ll know a way to find our friends faster. Come on.”
Ginny followed Harry through the door and down a long hallway, through another room that was empty, another hallway that was short and then into an open area that was obviously the Unspeakables’ reception area. Ginny wondered how many people actually made it back here that were not Unspeakables. She doubted very many. Soon she found herself and Harry standing in front of Henry’s portrait. It was quite a large one located in a hallway.
“Grandpa, as it turns out I could use more help. As you can see I’ve gained a friend,” Harry said indicating Ginny.
“Hi, Ginny. It’s great to see you again.”
“Hi, Henry. It’s good to see you too.”
“What can I help you guys with?”
“Ron, Hermione, Neville, and Luna came here as well to help me but they went looking for me trying different doors in the circular room. I have no idea where they might be and I need to find them. There are at least a dozen Death Eaters here as well. Actually, Ginny and I put down three of them pretty good. I doubt they get up anytime soon. I did subdue twelve of them originally in the Room of Prophecy but they revived a lot sooner than they should have. I suspect there was another around hiding that revived them after I left, Peter Pettigrew as the rat most likely.”
“Good for you guys and it was Peter. He woke them all up after you left the Room of Prophecy. Make sure you don’t go easy on any of them the next time you see them.” Henry looked at Harry and smiled. “All you have to do Harry is turn around and look at the map on the opposite wall.”
Harry and Ginny turned around and saw a very familiar looking map of the entire Department of Mysteries. He could see all his friends labelled with their name. He saw that the Death Eater Ginny took out was Rabastan Lestrange. The two Death Eaters in the circular room that he blasted against the wall were Thaddeus Nott and Augustus Rookwood.
“This looks a lot like the Marauders’ Map of Hogwarts that my Dad and his friends made.”
“Where do you think James got the idea?” asked Henry.
“Using the map,” continued Henry, “I have been following you and your friends’ progress since I arrived. That little show you put on in the Room of Prophecy was quite impressive if I can imagine the moves you had to make to take all twelve of them down. Peter was definitely in there with you but stayed at a good distance. I’m not sure what you and Ginny were doing in the circular room after that but that’s none of my business anyway.”
Harry and Ginny looked at each other and smiled.
“As you can see your friends have been all over the place and they have met a few of the Death Eaters along the way. Hermione appears to be hurt very badly but we know she’s still alive. Ron is acting funny by the way he’s walking around. Neville may have been hurt as well but he’s still functional. Luna appears to be fine.”
“They got separated at one point. Ron ended up with Luna and Neville with Hermione. Both pairs were attacked while they were separated. That’s when they were hurt. They were horribly outnumbered and I believe Harry you have the Death Eaters working a lot harder after what you did to them. I recommend you go help your friends immediately. Hermione could be seriously injured. She isn’t moving. Dolohov was in the room with her when she fell. He’s known to have some very wicked and nasty spells at his disposal.”
Harry and Ginny nodded then took off running toward their friends.
Ron, Hermione, Neville, and Luna were not expecting so many Death Eaters who were obviously out for blood. While trying to get away from the onslaught of spells they were being bombarded with, including Unforgivables from nine Death Eaters, they got separated somehow. Hermione and Neville had run through a door but were not followed by Ron and Luna. They’d been running the opposite way and dashed through a different door.
Hermione and Neville were fighting three of them in one room with desks. They took out one Death Eater and then Hermione was dueling Dolohov. Another Death Eater was hiding and managed to surprise and kick Neville right in the mouth. He went down hard with a lot of blood. This distracted Hermione who took her eyes off of Dolohov for a split-second to check on Neville. That was all Dolohov needed. He hit Hermione with a spell that looked like a purple flame. She let out a gasp and fell down to the floor no longer moving.
Neville got back up and saw Hermione laying on the floor. He dodged a spell from the Death Eater that kicked him and then laid him out with a front snap kick and a follow up knee to the face. Blood splattered everywhere from his broken nose. Dolohov did not turn in time before Neville clocked him with a spinning back kick, sending him flying over a desk and crashing to the floor. Neville ran over to Hermione.
He felt for her pulse and thankfully, she had one. She didn’t look good though. Neville lifter her up and put her over one shoulder to carry her. He had to get her out of there and to a healer. He went searching for the circular room and the way out.
He found the circular room but the next door he tried was a room with a large tank full of brains. He watched in horror as he entered the room finding Ron and Luna fighting five Death Eaters. The Death Eaters had learned a lesson and were staying back behind cover and firing curses. Ron and Luna were dodging the curses and throwing a few back at them. It was obvious Ron had been hit with something that had him stumbling around but he somehow managed to keep dodging their spells and casting some good ones of his own. Neville carefully laid Hermione down on the floor and cast a Reducto at the Death Eaters blasting apart what they were hiding behind. This distracted everyone since they didn’t see Neville come in. Three Death Eaters flew back from the blast. One recoiled from the pieces flying at him. However, one of them wasn’t caught in it and was concentrating on a particular spell. Too late, Neville saw Ron get hit from behind with one of the brains from the tank. Tendrils came out of the brain and wrapped around Ron’s arm. Ron started screaming.
“Get them off! No! Stop! That hurts! Get them off!”
Neville stunned the one who put the brain on Ron and cast another Reducto at the others again. This caused the one still awake to take off out of the room through another door. Ron managed to get the brain off him with the help of Luna who carefully guided it with her wand back into the tank. Ron was even worse now after the brain touched him.
“Come on guys we have to get out of here,” said Neville as he went back over and picked up Hermione again. “The circular room is this way.”
With Neville carrying Hermione and Luna guiding Ron, they made their way out to the circular room. They ignored the crumple forms of the two Death Eaters in there but the next door they tried was a large room with rows of stone benches surrounding a large archway on a raised dais. The archway had a curtain that seem to have a slight breeze blowing on it on occasion. Neville put Hermione down on a bench to rest and Luna sat Ron down next to her. Ron reached over and touched Hermione’s hair.
“Hermione?” he mumbled.
“A Death Eater hit her with a nasty spell,” Neville told him. “I have no clue what it did but she hasn’t moved since. At least she’s still alive.” Neville finished looking at Luna who appeared a bit worried instead of aloof this time. As he and Luna were staring at each other two people came running through the door. Neville and Luna turned quickly and cast a stunner each.
Harry and Ginny put up shields quickly to block the two stunners from Neville and Luna.
“You guys a little jumpy for some reason?” asked Harry with a chuckle.
Neville let out a sigh and his shoulders lowered a bit relieved that it was Harry and Ginny.
Ginny rushed down to Hermione and Ron. Harry followed her and stood before Hermione. He gave a cursory glance at Ron before deciding he could wait until after Hermione was set to rights.
Harry opened her jumper at the top so he could put his hand on her chest. He let his magic flow to diagnose the problem. This was one nasty spell. It appeared to be slowly shutting down all Hermione’s internal organs. Harry quickly pushed his healing magic through until he knew he had removed the curse and restored all her organs back to normal. He then pushed a little of his magic through to her to give her a boost. He lifted up his hand and buttoned Hermione’s jumper back.
Harry stood up and took a deep breath. “That was way too close,” he said to his friends. Turning to Ron, he said, “What happened to Ron?”
“He was hit with a strange spell,” replied Luna, “that made him kind of loopy and had him staggering around. He still managed to dodge spells and cast several himself. Then one of the Death Eaters levitated a brain from the tank behind him and put it on his arm. It had tendrils that came out and wrapped around him. It obviously was not a pleasant experience from his screaming to get it off. Between the two of us, we managed to dislodge it and I levitated it back into the tank. Ron has been far worse ever since. I think it did something to his mind.”
Harry knelt down in front of Ron and looked him in the eyes.
“I’m here Ron. I’m going to try and fix you up.”
Ron just stared at Harry.
Harry put his hands on Ron’s face and diagnosed the problem. He removed the spell then saw that the brain had infected Ron’s mind. Harry removed the infection that was still active but didn’t think he could heal his mind the same way so instead delved into his head with a silent Legilimens.
What Harry saw was a complete mess. He was standing inside Ron’s head looking at Ron’s mind in front of him. The foreign brain had tried to take over and change all of Ron’s memories. There was so much damage that Harry was not sure where to start. He made sure the problem was not worsening, that he had stopped all the infection, then pulled back out of Ron’s mind.
Harry looked at his friend.
“You alright Ron?”
Ron just stared at Harry.
“Ron’s mind has been changed by that brain. It actually tried to take over. I’ve stopped it but he needs more attention to set him straight. Right now, there’s not enough time for me to work on it. Personally, I will have to think this through before I can help him further. It will be best to get Ron back to Madam Pomfrey as soon as we can.”
Hermione started stirring so Harry moved away from Ron and knelt beside Hermione.
“What happened?” she mumbled.
“You were hit with a nasty spell Hermione but I was able to heal you up.”
“Yes, it looked like a purple flame. Harry!” exclaimed Hermione sitting up and grabbing him in a hug. “We were so worried about you.”
“I can tell since you all followed me here. Are you alright now? Fully functional again?”
Hermione stood up.
“Yes, I feel great as a matter of fact. Did you give me some of your magic, Harry?”
“Yes, your core was a little low fighting that curse so I bumped it up a little to help your recovery.”
Hermione turned toward Luna. “I know what you mean now Luna. His magic is special. It makes you feel good.”
“It certainly does,” said Ginny. “Harry healed my back and then a little later he healed my ankle that was broken fighting a Death Eater. I can still feel his magic and it does feel great.”
“Well, why don’t we talk about how great Harry’s magic is a little later? Right now we have company,” warned Neville.
Ten Death Eaters had barged into the room. They looked worse for wear. Harry saw that Rabastan was moving around again but had a nasty limp and was quite banged up. His friends must have healed him up a bit. He didn’t see Nott and Rookwood though. They were still crumpled up in the circular room where he left them.
Harry herded his friends down to the center of the room where the archway stood to make a stand. Hermione and Luna took Ron with them and stood him behind them for his protection. Harry could hear voices coming from the archway but kept his eyes on the Death Eaters. He noticed Dolohov acted surprised when he saw Hermione looking good as new.
“You guys haven’t had enough yet?” asked Harry.
“Did you think we could be bested by a bunch of kids?” asked Lucius.
“Yes I did, and I believe we did just that as a matter of fact. Tell me, where did you leave Nott and Rookwood? They weren’t able to join us? I see that Rabastan is up again… somewhat. Maybe Ginny shouldn’t have taken pity on him and let him off the hook.”
Ginny shrugged her shoulders.
Lucius and the other Death Eaters walked down further toward the kids but Lucius stopped well before he was in kicking range of Harry.
“Shall we call a truce Potter? Hand over that prophecy now,” said Lucius in a threatening manner.
“Hmmm…,” said Harry pretending to ponder the question, “… no.”
“Why you little – “said Lucius drawing his wand.
Just then, the doors burst open and in came the Order of the Phoenix lead by Sirius himself.
“Get away from my godson!” yelled Sirius casting a curse at Lucius. Lucius put up a shield and fired back at Sirius who simply dodged the spell as he came forward and then connected with Lucius’ chin using a right cross that sent him sprawling across a bench and onto the floor. Pandemonium then erupted between the Death Eaters and the Order.
Sirius went over to Harry.
“Get your friends out Harry. The Order will take care of these guys.”
“We would rather stay and help,” replied Harry.
“You have done enough already. We saw Nott and Rookwood on our way in. Somebody did a real number on them. Take your friends and go.”
“Sorry, Sirius but we’ve been running circles around these guys all night. We’re staying and helping mop this up.”
“Alright but protect yourself at all times, that goes for all of you,” he said to the rest of the group.
They nodded and went to work. Harry stunned and tied up Lucius quickly while he was getting back up from Sirius’ punch. Harry then squared off against Dolohov while Sirius took on his cousin Bellatrix. Any Order members who were struggling were then assisted by a teenager using karate and magic to subdue the Death Eaters. Hermione remained with Ron to protect him but that didn’t prevent her from hitting Death Eaters with stunners from where she stood. The students took them down so fast the Order was not sure what happened or if they were even needed.
Dolohov, while dueling Harry, made the mistake of using the same spell he cast on Hermione. Harry recognized the Purple Flame Spell from what Hermione had described. Harry blocked it but it made him angry when he remembered what it did to Hermione. She would have died a horrible death if he’d not been able to heal her.
Incensed, Harry cast a Blasting Hex with a lot of power right at Dolohov’s wand. The hex smashed right through Dolohov’s shield, turned his wand into sawdust, and took off most of his arm. Before Dolohov could even realize what had happened, Harry followed with a strong Cutting Hex that cut off his other arm at the shoulder. Harry quickly cleaned up the arm he blasted off by cutting it off at the shoulder as well.
Dolohov had a shocked look on his face as he looked down and saw both arms missing. Dolohov then fell over and passed out. Harry then cast a healing spell that stopped the loss of blood, affectedly cauterizing the wounds. Next he Stunned Dolohov and tied him up in two quickly cast spells. Harry didn’t want him to die but refused to feel sorry for him in the least. Dolohov deserved exactly what he got. He had paid for that ticket to a living Hell with change left over.
Harry turned and saw that Bellatrix was trying to get away while dueling Sirius. Sirius was playing with her, taunting her when she cast the Killing Curse.
“Oh no you don’t,” said Harry as he conjured a brick wall that he sent flying toward Bellatrix. The curse exploded the wall but Harry vanished the bricks before they could fall on anyone. After that was done, he saw Bellatrix run out a door. Seeing she was the only Death Eater left uncaptured, Harry chased after her. Sirius was wondering where the wall came from and how it disappeared after it exploded. He had turned away when it exploded and didn’t see where Harry went. Bellatrix, with Harry chasing her, finally ended up in the Atrium. She had been firing curses the whole way, especially Dark ones. Harry simply dodged or blocked them with ease frustrating Bellatrix to no end.
“Tired yet, crazy woman?” asked Harry as he caught up to within ten feet of her.
“I’LL KILL YOU,” she yelled at him.
“Isn’t that what you’ve been trying to do?”
They dueled some more. Harry noticed she was really quick with her shield so he was not able to get his regular Stunner through. Deciding that he was tired of toying with her, he sent a Cutting Hex that broke her shield in half. He followed that immediately with another Stunner, and then finished with Incarcerous. The three spells appeared to be cast almost at the same time.
Bellatrix quickly put up her shield again but the hex cut right through it and the Stunner connected with her chest, next she was trussed up with ropes. Harry walked up to her and was looking down at her when his scar throbbed and his wand was suddenly summoned from his hand. Harry turned and saw Voldemort standing there about twenty feet away. He let Harry’s wand sail on past him so that it clattered on the floor behind him.
“Hello Harry, fancy seeing you here.”
“Hello Tom, long time no see.”
“Don’t call me that!”
“Why not? That’s your name.”
“I am Lord Voldemort. I am no longer Tom Riddle.”
“Really? Tell me, how do you keep your followers in the dark about yourself? They all appear to be eat up with pureblood mania so how do they put up with you being a half-blood? Are you just lying to them? Are they too stupid to look it up?”
Harry was hit with the curse just as he was hoping. However, no one could cast the Cruciatus Curse like Voldemort. Harry had already started using his focus technique while he and Voldemort were still talking. The curse still hurt like crazy but Harry started overpowering it more with his focus to ignore the pain and his use of his healing magic that he now had flowing through his entire body. It took nearly all of the pain away.
Once he had it under control Harry positioned himself so that he could point his finger at Voldemort while still pretending he was in great pain. Building up his magic he was about to put a hole through Voldemort with a Stunner, when a fireplace lit up and out walked Dumbledore who cast a spell at Voldemort immediately to make him release Harry from the curse. Voldemort did drop the curse to block Dumbledore’s spell but Harry was disappointed at Dumbledore’s timing. He thought for sure he would kill Voldemort this time.
Dumbledore and Voldemort began dueling in a manner Harry had never seen before. The spells these guys knew how to do were spectacular. Harry waved his hand, summoned his wand back to him, and stood up as if nothing was wrong. Voldemort eyed him suspiciously while also keeping an eye out for Dumbledore. He fully expected Harry to be out for the count, possibly insane from the torture but here he was summoning his wand and standing up as if he didn’t have a care in the world.
Voldemort yelled “Avada Kedavra” and cast the killing curse at Harry who was about to dodge it but one of the statues being controlled by Dumbledore jumped in front of it and took the curse instead. Harry started to help Dumbledore take down Voldemort but Dumbledore stopped him. He had just trapped Tom in a ball of water he pulled out of the fountain. Tom was struggling to break out of it. Dumbledore looked at Harry.
“This is not your time to face him Harry. Not yet. Stay out of the way and let me handle this.”
“Alright sir, as long you explain that to me later, but if at any time you look like you need help I’m weighing in.”
Harry walked over and leaned against the wall. He kept his wand in is hand just in case and waited, watching the spectacle in front of him. After a minute Voldemort had managed to break out of the ball of water and disappear completely. Did he flee?
“Stay where you are Harry,” warned Dumbledore.
The Professor looked extremely worried but Harry couldn’t see why until his scar burst in agonizing pain. He felt Voldemort trying to take over his mind. Harry was fighting him with all his might but Voldemort was too strong.
Harry suddenly remembered what he had to do. Harry had all the really important stuff locked away and buried deep. Voldemort would never find that or even know that it exists. Harry finally gave in completely and let Voldemort think he had broken him, but Harry directed him towards some of his favorite memories – the laughter among friends, the kisses from Tonks and Ginny, joking around, the love he felt for Sirius and his friends. In the next instant, Harry heard a scream and felt Voldemort leave him quickly.
After another minute, Harry opened his eyes and tried to focus because he started hearing many voices. He heard a man say that he saw you-know-who disappear with the woman who was tied up over there. Tom must have taken Bellatrix with him, he thought.
Harry found Dumbledore leaning over him and staring into his eyes.
“Are you alright Harry?”
“I think so, Professor. He almost had me but once again he underestimated me and I tricked him.”
“Come on, my boy,” said Dumbledore helping Harry into a sitting position. “You handled yourself admirably Harry. He left in quite a hurry. You must have showed him something he didn’t like.”
“I just shared a few of my favorite memories and love for my friends. He didn’t seem to appreciate them as much as I do.”
Dumbledore chuckled. “No, I don’t think he would.”
Dumbledore helped Harry up the rest of the way until he was standing. Looking across the way Harry saw all of his friends and some of the Order. Looking around he saw Fudge and some aurors discussing what they had seen and assessing all the damage done to the atrium, which was quite extensive. Between Dumbledore transfiguring anything and everything and Voldemort blowing everything up, it was quite a mess.
“Professor, I’m going to collect my friends and portkey back to Hogwarts. We’ve had a long night and we must get Ron to Madame Pomfrey.”
“Alright Harry, give me about thirty minutes to explain all this to Cornelius and I’ll meet you back there. I’ll send for you when I arrive. We have much to discuss.”
“Yes, Professor we do.”
Harry walked over to his friends and said hello to the Order members. Sirius was not around.
“Harry?” asked Kingsley “We found Dolohov missing both arms. Would you happen to know how that happened?”
“Yes, as a matter of fact I would. When I caught up with Hermione, she was unconscious from a spell Dolohov hit her with. She would’ve died an agonizing death had I not arrived in time and been able to heal her. The spell was slowly shutting down all her internal organs. Hermione told me the spell looked like a purple flame. After you guys came in, I ended up dueling Dolohov. In the middle of it, he made the mistake of casting the same spell at me. I remembered how deadly it was and what it did to Hermione. I decided if he wanted to cast deadly spells then I would make it more difficult for him. After I blocked his spell, I ramped up and cast a Blasting Hex that destroyed his wand, his hand, and wand arm. I followed that with a Cutting Hex that removed his other arm. His wand arm was a big mess so I removed it with a Cutting Hex as well just to make it nice and tidy. He wasn’t able to block any of my spells and certainly can’t now. I then healed his wounds so he wouldn’t bleed to death, stunned him, and tied him up.”
“I’ll write it up as it truly is Harry, self-defense. If you need someone to talk to about this then I’ll make myself available to you. I know actions taken in battle can sometimes be difficult to deal with after we have time to reflect.”
“Don’t worry about me Kingsley. He deserved exactly what he got. He was lucky I didn’t kill him for what he did. After what I witnessed tonight with every single one of these Death Eaters, I’m not letting them get away with those type of spells any longer. I won’t kill indiscriminately but if you try to kill my friends or me then I will show you no mercy. You will get back what you dish out.”
“These are tough times Harry. I’m sorry you’ve had to grow up so fast.”
Harry just shrugged his shoulders. “Thanks Kingsley for the assist tonight.”
“I’m not sure we were even needed Harry but anytime I can have your back I’ll be there.”
“Good night Kingsley. I’m taking my friends back to Hogwarts.”
“Get some rest, Harry,” said Tonks from a few feet away.
Harry walked over and gave Tonks a big hug and a kiss on the cheek.
“You too Tonks and thanks for the help.”
Harry walked over to his friends, pulling his wand and conjuring a rope at the same time. He then pointed his wand at the rope and turned it into a portkey. The rope glowed an electric blue color for a second. Fudge saw Harry create the portkey from across the way.
“Dumbledore, he can’t do that right in front of me and while at the Ministry at that!”
“Cornelius, do not even go there. Harry and his friends took down a dozen major Death Eaters tonight and Harry sent Voldemort packing. You will want to hear all I have to tell you about tonight’s doings. I will give you thirty minutes of my time before I must return to Hogwarts.”
“But – but –”
“Cornelius, the last person you want on your bad side is Harry.”
Fudge sighed. “You will explain everything Dumbledore?”
“Yes, Cornelius, thirty minutes should be enough time and then I must go.”
Looking back at Harry and his friends they saw them all grab a hold of the rope (Ron had some assistance) and they disappeared from the atrium.