James quickened his pace as the sound of poundng footsteps came closer. He signalled the two Death Eaters trailing behind to stay where they were. James started climbing the trees around his and stopped atop a branch that gave him a good look around the area. He could see the Giants heads as they wandered around to their own tasks.
James flew himself to another tree with a spell and came face-to-face with what appeared to be a guard.
"What is your business?"
"I am an emissary of the Dark Lord"
This perked the guard's interest as it leaned its face forward and relaxed its weapon arm.
"He has asked me to inform your superiors that he will give your people free reign over whatever land you require and shall finally have your equality as well"
"Hmm...I shall send your message to my leader"
As the Giant turned away, James quickly shot an explosion spell at the tree trunk and quickly apparated away, but not before leaving a fake body in his place.
The two Death Eaters, seeing the body fall, assume to worst and rush out to stupidly attack the beast. They fired a few cutting curses, but one was crushed by the Guard's hammer while the other quickly apparated away.
The lone Death Eater informed the Dark Lord of what had occured, and was rewarded with a quick death. Voldemort had been pacing in the Malfoy Manor contemplating what had occured. The Giants were idiotic creatures, in his perspective, and it shouldn't surprise him that they killed his men. James, however, should have been much harder to eliminate. Unless they someone managed to distract him. Even then it would have been a difficult task.
Voldemort finally grew weary of pacing the room, and took a seat on his chair. He ordered Malfoy, Bellatrix, and the Carrows to gather their allies. He would have to start gathering his forces for the assault on Hogwarts soon. Voldemort contemplated the plan James and himself made a few weeks ago. It was designned to act as a seige.
If they couldn't break into Hogwarts by force, then they could lay waste to them on all sides. All defence spells would have to come down eventually, and when they are at their lowest, Voldemort's forces would strike.
Voldemort sat in continuous thought about how the plan would play out. Without its key player it might prove to be more difficult. Still, he was Lord Voldemort, and he would have the final strike against Harry Potter.
James re-animated outside the grounds of Hogwarts and quickly rushed inside, but not before expelling the Dark Mark from his arm. Night was falling, so he needed to get to Dumbledore's Office immediately. Approaching the statue, James realized that he didn't know the password and cursed his bad luck. He was about to try and scale the walls when a voice sounded off behind him.
"Mr. Winter? Is that you?"
"Professor McGonagall? Oh thank Merlin, I need to speak with Dumbledore right away"
"Well I am sorry to say that Professor Dumbeldore is not at Hogwarts at the moment"
"What!? Oh bugger, this is not good"
"Would you mind filling me in on what has occured?"
James lets out a sigh as he says, "If this were any other teacher I would say no...but, you are the Deputy Headmistress, so it's your right to know as well"
McGonagall led James to her office where they both sat down to discuss the matter at hand.
"So, what is it that has troubled you so?"
"Well professor, it's a bit of a long story"
McGonagall gave James the look that said, "Go on"
"Well...the Dark Lord and I created a...plan B, if you will. It involves besieging the castle and nailing it with spells until the place is obliterated"
"Unfortunately...most of the plan has already been though out so...we need to prepare Hogwarts for a siege, and inform your allies of what is to occur"
"Yes...I will get that information to the Head Master upon his return"
"That would be wise...now, if you'll excuse me, I need to find somewhere to sleep for the night"
"Oh, well, actually, Mr. Winter. You are stil technically a Gryffindor, and I don't believe that many members of your House would want to throw you out of the Dorms"
James laughed at that comment.
"So, if you wish, you may reside in the Gryffindor Common Room if you desire"
"Thank you professor, that is most appreciated"
Professor McGonagall gives James the password and lets him leave her office as she starts gathering the materials needed for the next day. James made his way through the familiar hallways and climbed up the moving staircases until he finally reached the portrait. After speaking the password, the lady opened the door and allowed James inside.
Upon entering James noticed that the Common Room was completely empty, ans the fire was all but ash and embers. He quietly sleceted a few logs and placed them on the dying fire. He then took off his robes, which left him in his shirt and pants, and took a seat on the couch.
"James?" Someone voices behind him
James quickly turns his head to see Tonks standing at the base of the stairway, wearing a pair of swetpants and t-shirt.
Tonks quickly rushes forwards and barrels into James, who had stood up after noticing her presence.
"I'm so glad you're back. It was starting to feel lonely without the trio here"
"Wait, Harry and the others aren't here?"
"No, they left with Dumbledore to find the other Horcrux"
"Well that explains why Dumbledore isn't here"
"So...what are you doing back?"
"I've come to prtoect you"
"How sweet, but I feel that you're lying"
"Only partially, and no, I won't tell you"
"Fine...but, there is a perfectly comfortable couch right here...wanna re-create some old memories?"
"I'm the big spoon as usual, correct?"
James laid himself down on the couch as Tonks crawled into his embrace. The couch seemed smaller now that they were older.
"Remember when we use to do this as kids?" Tonks asks
"Yeah, things were much simpilar back then"
"Mmm...sleep is calling me"
James places a kiss on Tonks lips as she rests her head on his chest. Soon James heard the soft breathing of Tonks, and tightened his grip on her as he succumbed to sleep as well.
Both lovers woke up to a ray of sun hitting them through a window. Tonks dug her face into James while the man himself just covered his face with his pillow.
"Tonks...I think the sun is trying to give us a message"
"Tell it to bugger off"
James waved his hand to close the curtains as Tonks relaxed on his body.
"Does that help Nymphie?"
"Yes...and remind me why I let you call me that?"
James lifts her head up to capture her lips in a pleasureable kiss.
"Mmm, now I remember"
James chuckles a bit and lets Tonks sit herself into an upright position. James does the same and positions himself next to her.
"War is coming" James says
Tonks gives an understanding grunt and rests her head on James's shoulder.
"We can win...I know we can. We've got the most powerful sorcerer on our side"
"You bet you do, and I'll be right by your side in the coming battle"
As the two closed in for another kiss, the Portrait Door opened as the Golden Trio pluss Fleur stepped in. James and Tonks quickly sprung apart and had very impressive blushes on their faces. Hermione took notice first and says, "Well well, look at what we found"
"Hermione, Ron, Harry, Fleur" James greets
"Bonjour, monsieur Winter"
"Good to see ya mate"
After the pleasantries were exchanged the Golden Trio started to recount their adventures with Dumbledore, with the occasional information from Fleur. James told his own side of the story as well, and soon the group started to devise plans for the coming seige.
Eventually Professor McGonagall called them all into Professor Dumbledore's Office, and from there the entire gathering of people began making preparations for the seige with the initial ideas from the Gryffindors.
"So, we'll need to gather the civillians at Hogsmeade and send them to a part of the castle that is most defended. And fortify the weakest links in the school. We also need a supply of food and water" Dumbledore lists off
"Well, we could use the lake for water, and grow our own food in the green houses" Hermione suggests
"You'd need to get the water early then, because we planned to poinson the water as well" James inputs
Dumbledore sent Hermione to organize a group of people to help gather water from the lake. It could be cleaned later, and they hopefully wouldn't need to resort to using spells. Using a water spell would work, but it would waste energy needed to keep the barrier around the Castle working.
"We'll also need medicine and herbs. There will be injuries, that is a given" James states
"I'll go get Neville, he'll probably kow more about plants than we do combined" Ron says, and quickly leaves the office in search of the Herbologist
"Alright, we should probably call ing some of our allies to help relieve some of the pressure in battle" James says
"I can contact Beauxbatons Academy" Fleur says
"I'll try to contact Viktor at the Durmstrang Institute" Harry says
"Good, go quickly"
The next few days went by in a hurry. All students under their Third Year were to be evacuated to their homes immediately. Everyone else would help cast defence spells on the school and barricade its secret entrances/exits. The Beauxbatons and Durmstrang students that were sent were extremely appreciated, since they helped move things along at a faster rate.
In all but a few days, the school had become a fortress, and all that it needed was a foe. James was spending his time in the Gryffindor Tower with Tonks while everyone else was on alert for any signs of trouble. Tonks was sitting on the couch while James paced back and forth.
"Calm down. Hopefully they won't breach the shields, and even if they do we have a strong defence"
"But what if it isn't enough? Harry said that the last Horcrux was here, in Hogwarts. They still haven't found it yet"
"Well, what do they have for clues?"
'It's in the place where all things are hidden...maybe it's the Room of Requirements? But we haven't found the door yet"
At that moment Dean came charging in through the Portrait Door and look at the pair with relief in his eyes.
"I was looking everywhere for you. Harry and the others found one of the last Horcruxes, and they destroyed it!" Dean states in one large breath
"Well...I guess they beat us to it" Tonks says
"All that leaves is the snake and the big man himself"
As night set in, hundreds of cloaked forms could be seen on the hills overlooking the school. James and Tonks looked on with determination in their eyes. James had re-colored his robe and went by the new name of Dezmond, his father's father.
Soon the cloaked figures raised their wands and fired bombardment spells on the castle's shields. The time had come to fight. War had come to Hogwart's door step, and they would not go quietly into the night.