Chapter 31 Champion of Hogwarts
Disclaimer: This story is based on characters created and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoast Books, and Warner Bros., Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.
Summary: What is 'The power he knows not' and how did Harry get it? How did Harry survive the killing curse and what does Sirius Black have to do with it? Who is the voice Harry is hearing in his head?
Chapter 31 – Champion of Hogwarts
From the Last Chapter:
For the first time, Voldemort showed emotion, and it wasn't good. "Don't say that name!" As he threw a dark, blood boiling curse at Harry. "I am no longer that person! I have descended below all the evil that is known to man and have come out a new creature. One FAR superior to mere man or wizard! I AM A GOD! I WILL DESTROY ALL WHO STAND IN MY WAY! Starting with you little boy!"
"Too much talk old man. Let's dance the dance of death."
"If that is your wish, so be it. I will be victorious!"
"I don't think so." The sword, Durendal, appears in his hand and he prepares for battle.
And so it starts...
Voldemort looked at Harry with a cruel smirk on his face as he circles the floor, making sure to stay out of the range of Harry's sword.
"So you wish to finish this as a Noble do you? Very few purebloods still practice the art of the sword. But then, that is no ordinary sword now is it Potter? Yes, I know what that sword is and what it represents. You view yourself to be a Paladin don't you?"
It was really more of a statement than a question.
"Well then, this should prove interesting." He said has he called his own sword to his hand. A scimitar, with a flowing curved blade and a very deadly tip.
"There is great advantage in having bonded to a weapon isn't there Potter? You can call it to you from wherever you are, whenever you want."
The sword in Voldemort's hand reeked of evil just as the man himself.
"It is fitting that these two blades should meet again. My scimitar was at Prince Roland's last battle. It is called the 'Sword of Attila' as it was reported to have been presented to him by the god of war himself! This blade has shed much blood over the past 15 centuries, and has only become stronger with each life it takes."
"This is that blade that killed the last great paladin! Wielded by a basque when Ganelon, one of his fellow paladins, betrayed Roland to his fate while on his way to confront the Muslims in what we now call Spain."
"The myth stated that Roland's sword was lost, thrown into a poisoned stream. The basque who defeated Roland was denied his prize, but I shall not be denied mine!"
Quicker than Harry thought humanly possible, Voldemort charged him with his blade ready to strike. More by luck than by skill, Harry fell forward, managed to tuck into a clumsy roll, and came up into a defensive position with Durendal still in his hands.
His whole body ached, and protested at any quick movement. He was having a hard time keeping his eyes on his enemy.
Again, Voldemort attacked, but this time Harry met the blow and blocked it. This was not like one of the duals he had experienced with Godric or Salazar. Theirs could be brutal, but this was to the death. That thought, along with his promise to Lady Hogwarts got his adrenalin flowing. As soon as that happened, all stiffness and pain was blocked out of his mind. The only thought he had was in vanquishing his enemy.
For the most part Voldemort continued the part of the aggressor as Harry had little chance to more than parry his blows. Slowly, the pace of the battle slowed. Voldemort had not planned on being tested so soon after obtaining his new body. He had not had time to fully charge his core and thought this contest with an Eleven-year-old boy would be over in just moments, but he was mistaken.
It was obvious that this boy had had some training from some very competent instructors. They had taught him in both the old and contemporary aspects of fighting with a sword. Every attack what parried, and if he did not respond quickly enough, countered. It had been many years since Voldemort had felt so challenged by an opponent.
As sore and in pain as Harry was, he began to see an opening in Voldemort's defense, and started attacking back.
It seemed to take very little effort for Voldemort to parry his attacks, but slowly both blades started to have an impact on their opponent.
Harry was taken by surprise when a curse came through Voldemort's sword clipped him on the shoulder. Surprised by the change in tactics, he stepped back, out of Voldemort's reach to examine the damage, and begin repairs. He called for Ravenclaw's staff to cast a healing spell on him. He used the staff to help balance himself as he took a few moments to regain some of his strength, and retreated behind a column to heal.
"You surprise me Harry Potter," Voldemort said taking the time to catch his breath as well, "It would be a great shame to have to kill such a talented wizard. Join me! And together we can not only conquer this small island, but we could rule the WORLD!"
"I want nothing to do with you or your plans Tom!" Harry shouted while his shoulder repaired itself.
After Harry had cast the healing spell, he felt drawn to the staff, and to the 'knowledge sphere' in his mind. He could see the book Lady Hogwarts had laid on the table. He noticed the topic on the page as being the relationship between Ravenclaw's staff and her coronet, or 'Crown of Wisdom'. But before Harry could read about it, Voldemort was back on the attack.
Meanwhile back in the infirmary...
Bill Weasley was slowly coming to his senses after being hit by some kind of energy pulse from the-boy-who-lived. He looked around and saw that all the other adults and children where still out, but appeared to be healthy.
Slowly he made it to his feet and started reviving the different adults, starting with Madam Pomfrey, then moving on to his mother and Remus, while Madam Pomfrey took care of Healer Adams and Sirius. They felt the children would just be in the way, and didn't bother reviving them.
"Where's Harry?" Was the first thing Sirius asked as soon as he opened his eyes.
Everyone stopped and looked at the bed Harry had been recovering in to find it empty – except for a piece of parchment on his pillow.
"Damn it Pomfrey, this is no time to play games! Where have you moved Harry? I want to see him NOW!"
Madam Pomfrey was not used to being yelled at in 'her domain' and let the former student know it.
"You will NOT use that tone of voice with ME Mr. Black! This is MY infirmary, and what I do here, and how I do it is NOT your concern! You will remember that if you wish to remain in here!"
"Fine! Just tell me where Harry is and I won't bother you for the rest of the evening."
Looking around for the first time, she noticed that indeed Mr. Potter's bed was empty, except for a piece of parchment.
A confused healer picked up the parchment, but didn't look at it right away, but began looking around for her charge.
"I don't understand it. Mr. Potter was here just a few moments ago. Does anyone know how long we have been out for?"
Bill looked at his pocket watch and stated that it would appear as if they had all been out for about 25 minutes.
"25 minutes! What could have knocked us all out for 25 minutes!" Sirius was now pacing around the room waving his arms in frustration. This gave Madam Pomfrey time to look at the note.
"Oh dear Merlin!" she said quietly, all the adults stopped what they were doing and turned to look at her.
"What is it dear?" Molly asked.
Before she could answer, professor McGonagall came through the door looking rather frantic. She too was holding a piece of parchment.
"Poppy, would you please be so kind as to wake these children and gather Mr. Potter? We must get everyone out of Hogwarts quickly!"
"You received a note as well?" Madam Pomfrey asked.
"Yes. Now if you'll please get Mr. Potter and the rest of the children ready... Molly, Sirius, Remus, Healer, we could probably use your help in watching over the students once we get them out side." After a brief pause, Professor McGonagall noticed how pale her friend had gone. "Poppy, is there a problem?"
"Yes Pomfrey, where is Harry? And what's in that note in your hand?" Sirius was getting more and more impatient.
Madam Pomfrey could not answer him, but pressed the parchment into his hand.
In an elegant, clearly feminine script, Sirius read the note aloud for all to hear:
"Please remove all students from Hogwarts as it is currently not safe. My champion has gone to face the Dark Lord, who has risen again by using the Philosopher's Stone.
"Should he be unsuccessful, I will do all in my power to prevent him from leaving here alive."
"(Signed) Lady Hogwarts"
Sirius looked at the note in his hand in disbelief. "Is this meant to be real? Who is this 'Lady Hogwarts', and where is my Godson?"
It was Professor McGonagall who answered him as Poppy and the others were still in too much shock to answer. "Yes, Sirius, it is real. Surely, you felt that Hogwarts was more that just wood and stone while you were here? It would appear that over the millennial the school has become more or less, self-aware. She tries to nurture the students to become their best while they are here, and I firmly believe she is trying to do what she feels is best for all the students now. Now if you don't mind me asking, where is your Godson? We need to be moving quickly."
By now, Remus and Bill had revived the children. Hermione voiced her opinion.
"Professor, you know 'The Protector' that would show up from time to time to prevent the older students from bulling some of the younger ones? Every time he would appear, Harry would go missing. I should have mentioned it sooner, but I believe that Harry is 'The Protector'. It would appear that he is the Champion of Hogwarts."
"No! He can't be! He's just Harry! My Godson! I won't let him be this Champion! There are too many other things he needs to learn! Pranks to pull and girls to fall in love with." Sirius was truly panicked by this time. "Minerva, where is this 'Philosopher's Stone' the note talks about? If You-know-who is really back, maybe we can stop him before he recovers his strength."
Professor McGonagall, cursed Dumbledore under her breath for bringing that stone into a school full of children. "It's up on the third floor corridor, but you can't get to it now. It would seem that Hogwarts has sealed that part of the school completely off to everyone. I'm sorry Sirius, if Harry is down there, there's nothing we can do for him but hope and pray."
Sirius was about to go into another rant, when he was struck by a stunner. Looking up, Professor McGonagall saw Remus use his wand to levitate Sirius to one of the beds.
"I think it would be better for all of us if Sirius sits this one out." He said sadly. He was worried about Harry as well, but knew that there were more important thing to do now than fight with the Professor and Matron.
Harry now knew what it was to face pure evil. Voldemort and the Sword of Attila were merciless in their attack. He was far worse for ware in this second half of battle then he was at the first. He could still feel Hogwarts trying to feed his core, but he just couldn't concentrate on it long enough to get any real help.
For this second part of the dual, Voldemort had also equipped himself with a staff, and was showing Harry that it was not the first time he had used the two weapons in concert. The violence in each attack was nothing he had ever experienced in his training sessions with the founders. He just could not get into a position where he could use his sword without being blocked and countered, while dodging a dark curse at the same time.
'I've got to try to cast my 'Feed core' shield soon before I'm too weak to do anything else, may be I can draw the energy out of Voldemort at the same time Hogwarts is feeding my core.' He thought to himself.
'Be careful son, if you're not strong enough to keep the shield up, you'll be wide open for his attack.' 'Ma' said in a concerned tone.
'My Champion, you may wish to modify the spell so Voldemort cannot break contact by adding 'perminatus' on the end. That way you control when the spell is broken.' Lady Hogwarts added.
'Sounds good to me.' Harry replied, then waited for his chance.
Of course, he didn't have to wait long for Voldemort to cast another blood-boiling curse at him.
'All right!' Harry thought. 'Let's see if we can bring this bloody bastard down!'
Ignoring 'Ma's comments to him regarding his choice of words at the moment, Harry brought both Durendal and the staff of Ravenclaw forward, and shouted, "ALERE ROBORIS PERMINATUS" (Feed core Permanent).
Voldemort was initially surprised when he could not break the connection between his wand and the shield Harry had erected, then surprise turned to shock, as he felt his core being depleted through the spell. Harry, on the other hand, was feeling better then he had since coming down to face Voldemort. His core was currently being feed from two sources, Hogwarts, and Voldemort.
'Be careful son,'his 'Ma' warned him, 'We don't want to have you pull in more energy than you can contain. Even though your core is still flexible, unlike Riddle's core over there, you still run the risk of overdoing this power transfer. If that happens and your rupture your core, it will probably kill you.'
'Don't worry 'Ma', I've got along way to go before I have all my batteries charged.' Harry said in a slightly cocky voice.
Voldemort was now almost panicking. He felt himself getting weaker by the moment. 'What is this little brat doing to me?I should have remembered this shield from our encounter in the Forbidden Forest. How do I break this? What would I do if our positions were reversed?' Suddenly, a grin formed on the lips of Voldemort as he looked Harry in the eyes and said, "Revertor Polus" (Reverse poles).
Suddenly, Harry felt the flow of energy from the shield move back to Voldemort.
"You were quite cleaver there young Harry, I must commend your ingenuity in constructing such a useful spell. I'm sure I'll be able to use it in the future... After you're gone."
Now it was Harry's turn to panic. He could feel Hogwarts feeding him energy through his feet, up through his body, and out his staff and sword. He was able to disconnect Durendal from the shield, cutting the rate of energy loss by half, but the staff would not move. Just before he canceled the spell, he heard 'Ma' cry out 'No Harry! Keep the shield up!'
Harry thought back to his 'Ma', 'Ma, if you haven't noticed, he's taking in the energy faster than I can get it from Hogwarts! If I don't do something soon, my core will be completely depleted, and there will be nothing I can do to stop him from killing me!'
'I know that dear, but trust me. Don't you remember how we said your core was flexible, while Riddle's core was fixed? If we can feed him enough energy, HIS core will rupture, and he'll basically end up killing himself! You may want to also start layering shields around you too so that when he goes, he doesn't take you with him. Remember the Blood ward stones? This should be about the same.'
'Just great.'Harry thought.
As quickly and quietly as he could, Harry started to divide his attention between the two tasks. Using Durendal as a focus, he was able to slowly wrap not only himself, but also the wall, ceiling, and floor of the room they where in against the coming explosion. His main problem however, was that it was becoming harder and harder to do two things at once as his power kept getting lower and lower.
Hoping he had done enough to save himself, and the school, he dropped the sword and used both hand to hold the staff steady.
"I must commend you on your power level Harry. I haven't felt this good since my last dark ritual, where I merged the cores of 5 wizards to mine, but I must say, this is a much easier way to do that." Voldemort taunted. "Soon you will be literally powerless, and I will take great care to see that you pay for what you did to me eleven years ago."
Just as with the power transfer Harry performed with his friends on a new moon, the color of the connection between the shield and Voldemort had gone from red, to orange, to yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. Harry was barely standing, and his vision was starting to tunnel, and turn gray around the outer edge of his field of vision.
'I need more power!' Harry shouted in his mind. 'If I fail now, all I've accomplished is getting him fully changed to where he can takeover the world sooner.'
Lady Hogwarts was concerned for her young champion, but knew he was correct. If she did not provide him with enough energy to complete the task, not only would she lose Harry, but she would also end up destroying herself in an attempt to stop the mad man from leaving this place. But at these power levels, there was a possibility that he would be able to erect a shield strong enough to withstand the entire castle falling in on top of him.
Reluctantly she increased the rate of power going through Harry to Voldemort. The lights in the school were going dim. The paintings on the walls stopped moving, as did the stairs. The ceiling in the Great Hall went blank. The ghosts, and poltergeist were all left feeling their essences being slowly drained away. For the first time in a millennia, Peeves was seen praying to any god that would listen to him and let him live. If he did half the thing he promised the deities, the first years would never have anything to worry about again.
Outside the faculty and students marveled and quacked at what they were hearing and seeing. Hogwarts was shacking and groaning as if it had been attacked by an earthquake.
Professor McGonagall was surprised when she came down to the main doors and found Hagrid there with a large chain around a three-headed hellhound named 'Fluffy'. "She must of got out of her room some how." the groundskeeper said. "I'll just go and stake her out behind my hut."
Professor McGonagall and the other teachers and adults were moving the children as quickly as they could to Hogsmeade, thinking that in the worst case, they would put the students back on the Hogwarts Express and send them home a week or two early.
And then they heard it...
An explosion so loud and forceful it left everyone with their ears ringing loudly.
The overpressure was so great, that it knocked everyone off their feet, as well as damaged the trees and buildings within an 800-meter radius of the school.
Professor McGonagall slowly got to her feet and for several moments, could not bring herself to turn around to look at where the school had been. However, she noticed that the students were slowly standing and looking with their eyes as large as saucers, and their jaws almost touching the ground.
Turning slowly, she too was shocked when she saw Hogwarts apparently completely in tacked. The only way you could tell there had been an explosion was all the trees, grass, and Hagrid's hut were flattened out, pointing away from the school. Speaking of Hagrid's hut, when she looked in that direction, she could have sworn that she saw 'Fluffy' stagger up, and head off into the Forbidden Forest.
McGonagall quickly found Madam Pomfrey, and had her start treating everyone's ringing ears. "We have to get Professor Dumbledore and Madam Bones here as quickly as possible." She said in a rather loud voice, still having problems hearing herself speak.
With luck, they found The Three Broomsticks had only sustained minimal damage, and were able to use the floo to report the situation to the Ministry.
Professor Dumbledore and Madam Bones showed up with a complete squad of Aurors and another elderly wizard who looked to be in his 80's, and much more powerful than the Headmaster, and quite a bit more upset at the situation. As it turned out, this was the famed alchemist, Nicolas Flamel.
The Headmaster and others found the entire school marshaled on the Hogwarts Express platform – save one student. Harry Potter.
Professor McGonagall and Madam Pomfrey told the Headmaster about Harry's recovery, and how it was that he was now missing. Professor McGonagall had also told them how Remus Lupin had contacted the same house-elf that built his manor (Ty) to check the structural integrate of Hogwarts, and to begin repairs where needed. However, he also told Ty, "You can not repair the room where Harry and You-know-who are, it may be too unsafe for you, and it is a crime scene, we have to wait until Madam Bones and her Aurors are finished." The small elf lowered his head and acknowledged that he understood the command.
After asking Ty to take a look at Hogwarts, Remus knelt in front of the elf and quietly asked, "Is Harry..." he couldn't finish the question.
Ty nodded his head slowly and replied. "Master Harry is still alive, however, he is very weak. In fact, for a few moments, we could not feel him at all. It was as if his magic winked out of existence completely for just a few seconds before being felt again. We are all very worried for our young master and are all praying that he will be all right.
Ty then disappeared to begin his survey of the castle to see what damage had been done.
Remus joined the others and told them what Ty had said about Harry.
Dumbledore was just shacking his head and muttering "… it wasn't supposed to be that way... He should have had his friends with him... How did he even get the stone..."
The wizard beside Dumbledore gave him a very hard look. "You told Perenelle and me that the stone would be kept safe here at Hogwarts didn't you? Why didn't you just place it under a fidelius charm and put in your desk draw? Then now one could have found it without you telling them! I'm very disappointed in you Albus, VERY disappointed."
At this point a very nervous, very excited house-elf showed up next to Remus.
"Ty? What's the matter? Is anything wrong? Is the building safe to enter?" Remus asked.
"Yes the castle is safe to enter.," the young elf said quickly. "But you must hurry! Master Harry is gravely wounded and is starting to fade again!"
Master Flamel conjured a large piece of rope and told Madam Bones and her Aurors, along with Professor McGonagall and Madam Pomfrey to hold on to it. As they gathered around, he gave a cold eye to the Headmaster and asked, "Are you going to help us save the boy Albus? You know only the Headmaster can create a portkey to take us inside Hogwarts its self." Properly chastened, Dumbledore pulled out his wand and touched it. "Portus." He spoke quietly, and then, after the rope had quit glowing, grabbed on to the rope and touched it a second time.
The room they appeared in had a large chess set completely smashed, thrown across the far side of the room.
Normally the Headmaster would have taken point on entering the other rooms, but Master Flamel was quicker, and started heading off through the blown-out doors towards the room where the blast had originated.
As they entered the first room, they were assaulted with the stench of burnt flesh and a large pile of ash against the near wall. "Do I even want to ask what that is... or was Albus?" This time it was Madam Bones asking the questions, to which the Headmaster made no reply.
By this time, Master Flamel had entered the main chamber and was kneeling over a mostly naked, and very badly burned Harry. It would appear that most his cloths had been blown, or melted off from the explosion. His dignity barely in tacked. In Master Flamel's hand was an amulet that was hanging around his neck, with a chunk of golden red stone melted partly on it.
"What is that my friend?" Dumbledore asked.
Flamel gave Dumbledore a cold stare, letting him know that he was on very thin ice with the alchemist still. "This would be a protection amulet. Probably placed over his heart by his father or his mother – or both. I take it not all your diagnostic spell worked on young Mr. Potter did they Poppy?"
"No indeed. We have never been able to measure his core. That must be the reason."
"What's that gold rock attached to it?" one of the Aurors asked.
"That is what is left of the Philosopher's Stone," came the reply. "It is of no use to anyone any more." Nicolas stated, and with that, placed the stone and the amulet back on Harry's chest and covered it with his hand. After reciting what was the Flamel's house version of 'The blessing of the heir", he removed his hand to show that both the amulet and the stone were gone.
"The Ministry will need to exam that as evidence in an on-going investigation." Said the greedy Auror.
"What evidence?" Said Flamel with a gleam in his eye, not unlike the Headmaster's.
"Let it go Dawlish, there's nothing we can do about it now. Madam Pomfrey? Could you, Professor McGonagall, and Master Flamel please take Mr. Potter up to the infirmary for treatment? We will probably be the rest of the day down here, and there are several questions I would like to ask the Headmaster as to what the stone was even doing here in the first place.
Taking their leave, the small group of witches and a wizard gently levitated Harry out of the chamber. Master Flamel controlled the levitation spell, while Professor McGonagall led them out, and Madam Pomfrey started working on him as quickly as she could.
A/N: Sorry about that. FF isn't holding my spacing when ever I try using italic. I hope I got all of them fixed.
This seems to be the chapter that never ends. It's been written, and rewritten several times now, and I haven't been satisfied with any of them yet, however, rather then subject you to a 20+ page chapter, I'm dividing it at a logical breaking point.
I'm sorry I didn't do this sooner, but know that I already have another 10 pages written for the next chapter – but it isn't proofed, and is subject to change.
I hope you're not mad at me introducing Nicolas Flamel (and soon his wife as well) at this late point in the story. It just seems odd that you wouldn't have more interaction with them regarding their Philosopher's Stone.
Thank you for staying with me, I really am trying to end the story. Baring any unforeseen accidents, should have the next chapter our shortly.