Losses beyond imagining

Chapter 57

Hermione’s eyes darkened. “They killed Ron!” she repeated. “They nearly killed you, Harry, and they hurt Draco…”

“They nearly killed the baby, just now,” Ginny piped up. “I’m with Hermione on this…”

Harry became irritated. “If you two can’t control yourselves… I better just take Elphaba and be on my way…”

“Because that worked out so well, last time you tried.” Draco sneered, becoming quite rattled himself. On top of that, Harry didn’t mention taking him.

Elphaba had enough of it. “If only you could hear yourselves..” she said, shaking her head. “We’re on the same side…. They can’t be killed, for two simply reasons. There’s Draco’s problem, and there’s justice… They need to be caught. Also for the sake of their other victims. Their faces need to be splashed on the front page of the Daily Prophet for everyone to see…”

“Indeed,” Draco agreed. “I’m not the only one who needs them to perform a counter-curse…”

“They won’t do it…” Ginny huffed. “I don’t see how we can force them… Best to take them out altogether….” Like her mother, Ginny didn’t like her child being threatened, although it wasn’t even born yet.

“We stick to the plan!” Harry shouted in frustration. “Like we discussed!”

“We should be going,” Elphaba added, “the sun will be rising soon…”

They could hardly make out anything on this misty morning, once they had apparated near the Dark Stone. Draco cursed but Elphaba pointed out that it kept them save as well. This way they might approach them undetected. They moved quietly and could hear the Jennings speak to each other.

“We should put the Bole on top of the Stone,” Jemina muttered. “Like so…”

“Nothing is happening,” one of her sons said…

“We have to wait for the sun… It will work its magic…”

“It’s a catalyst,” the other son said smugly. “Unleashing the powers from within…”

“Exactly,” his mother said in triumph, “and our wishes will be granted…”

As the sky slowly began to change its colour, Harry led the group behind some bushes. They should not be noticed…

The mist disappeared rather quickly. They had a good view of the Bole on top of the Dark Stone. There wasn’t anything special about it at all: just an old dead tree trunk in the middle of a road…

It was hard to believe it could work miracles.

The first rays of the sun didn’t seem to have any effect at all… But as soon as the entire tree trunk was covered in light, as by a light beam, something did begin to move… Very, very slowly the tree began to grow. Not in a tree shape, but into a mirror. As the top branches closed its form, the middle appeared to turn into glass. It had become a mirror. A wooden mirror glowing in the sun’s light.

“The mirror of Erised…” Jemina gasped. “Granting you your every wish…”

“It means desire…” Justus muttered, when Julian’s expression remained vacant.

The mirror looked quite harmless, though a little out of place in the middle of a countryside road…

Jemina stood in front of it, motioning her sons to stand behind her. “I will ask for what I want now,” she said to them. “And it will be so…”

Her reflection appeared in the mirror. As Jemina saw herself, her expression slowly changed. She seemed to be horrified. “Don’t look!” she shouted at her boys, but they too were looking absolutely stunned.

Harry briefly thought he saw a glimpse of Voldemort in the mirror. He peered around and noticed that Draco was paler than usual. Had he seen it as well?

“No! No!” Jemina shrieked. “That is not true! It isn’t so!” She doubled down on her knees and began to wither on the ground. Her sons fell as well, both weakened by the mirror’s strength… They lay helplessly on the road, their bodies in spasms.

“What is happening?” Elphaba whispered. “Are they tortured? What is going on?”

Harry shook his head. “I don’t know. I haven’t the faintest…”

All eyes now looked at Hermione. She knew the most about the Bole. “Meeting yourself…” she mumbled, speaking to herself. “How interesting… Defeated by herself, her own reflection… Expelling the darkness…”

“Like Jung’s theory about integrating your shadow…” Hermione said as explanation, when she noticed their gaze, but no-one understood. Once again she was excited over something they’d never heard of before. She sighed. “Making your… darker, unwanted parts visible. By bringing them into the light, they won’t rule you subconsciously anymore…”

Somehow her words had a great effect on Draco. If that’s what it was all about… Perhaps he should give it a try… His mother’s warnings all forgotten, Draco stood up, slowly approaching the three withering Jennings’ still lying in front of the radiant wooden mirror. Expelling the darkness within didn’t sound that bad to him…

With Hermione still lecturing the others, holding their attention, they weren’t aware of his action until…

Draco came too close. The moment his reflection appeared in the mirror, Draco stumbled onto his knees, clutching his heart. Completely drained of colour, he too fell down, resembling a grey statue.

“NOOOO!” Hermione shrieked, leaping up towards him, but Harry stopped her.

“Hermione… wait… Just one second….” The mirror was changing. As the sun rose higher, the light beam weakened. Just as suddenly as it had appeared, the mirror disappeared. The glass shattered, the wooden boughs that had framed it retreated and the Bole resembled a tree trunk again. It was as if nothing had happened….

Four people lay on the pebbled road. Three Jennings and one Malfoy. As Hermione tried to wake Draco, Elphaba and Harry arrested their three enemies.

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