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Chapter 9: The Emerald Serpent
A/N I own the Horcrux Curse 'Partiour meus solus' Characters belong to JKR!
Chapter 9: The Emerald Serpent
Half an hour later, Harry, Ron and Hermione were sitting at the table in deep in discussion.
“… So that’s two down now,” said Harry, “with two more left to track down and destroy.”
“Well in that case we had better get a move on you know,” said Hermione to the tent at large.
Harry and Ron both agreed with Hermione, as that was the best option they had left.
So they prepared to leave 1860 behind and venture into the unknown, stepping outside and surveying the scene. The sun was now the deepest of crimson and gold, sinking behind soft, pearly white clouds.
“Do you reckon we should let Tom go?” said Ron tentatively.
His eyes flickered to the spot where the young Tom Riddle lay. He stared at the spot, blinked hard several times and said to Harry and Hermione, “Do you see what I see?”
Their eyes swivelled to the spot Ron was staring at.
“He’s, he’s…” Harry spluttered in amazement.
“Gone, he’s gone!” Hermione finished Harry’s sentence for him. “But I – I don’t see how he could of – of just gone” she added, awe struck. “Three powerful body binding curses were placed upon him.”
“Well you know old Vol –” Harry was cut across by Ron.
“Don’t! Just- don’t say You-know-who’s name!” Ron said angrily.
“…demort” continued Harry to Ron’s displeasure. “He knows magic we don’t.”
“Quite true,” Hermione agreed.
“But- where is he now? That’s the thing…” said Ron.
“Oh we will cross paths again, you mark my words,” Harry answered. One single thought now lay in his head… to get the other Horcruxes and finish Voldemort off.
Without further ado they packed away their belongings, and Hermione undid the protective spells. They slipped the Time Turner around their necks and rotated the pendent until it turned a fiery crimson, and then they spun on the spot and vanished into another era.
Seconds later they were being compressed to the point of suffocation; then suddenly they could breathe again. They fell out of the air smoothly and landed on their feet.
“Where the hell are we?” asked Ron, staring around wildly.
“No idea,” said Harry in reply. “Let’s keep walking though.”
Ron agreed heartily, and they trudged on over rough ground until they found the perfect place to set up their camp. It was a very secluded and enclosed spot, and as they busied themselves with the setting up of the camp and the placing of protective spells and charms, the darkness crept further and further around them.
Soon enough the trio were sitting at the table again beside the crackling fire in the grate, eating their evening meal in peaceful silence. Then suddenly, Harry felt his fork leave his hand as it clattered onto his plate. Then he felt a shooting pain in his scar and he closed his eyes to try and steady himself. Even though he’d shut his eyes he could see Ron and Hermione peering at him worriedly before a vision overcame him…
The present day Voldemort talking to someone he couldn’t see because they were in shadow.
“He’s after my Horcruxes,” hissed Voldemort, his scarlet slit eyes gleaming.
“But – My lord how can you be certain that Potter is after them? What use are they to him?” said the slippery voice of Severus Snape.
“You fool Severus, they are of no use to him, he’s destroying them! I can feel myself getting weaker,” whispered Voldemort. “We must stop him!”…
Then Harry he was becoming more aware of his surroundings as the vision melted away. He could see the worried looking face of Hermione above him.
“Hello Harry, how do you feel?” asked Hermione anxiously. “Ron, Ron he’s come round.” As soon as Hermione said this Ron appeared behind her shoulder, looking concerned.
“Hello mate! You gave me and Hermione quite a scare there,” Ron smiled.
“Feel ok?” Hermione enquired again.
“Yeah. Yeah, I think so,” said Harry, pushing himself up off the squashy armchair he must have fallen into. “How long was I unconscious for?”
“Around about five minutes,” Hermione replied. “We know your scar was hurting, we worked out that much for ourselves.”
“But why Harry?” asked Ron.
“I – I think you know who knows … about – about our mission.”
“How the hell can he mate?” asked Ron, a little infuriated.
“I haven’t got a clue Ron!” Harry said. “Plus the fact we still haven’t any idea what year we’re in.”
“Never mind that now Harry, did you see anything? What did You-know-who say?” interjected Hermione.
Harry then set about telling them what he had seen and heard between Voldemort and Snape. “…And that’s how I think he knows,” he finished fretfully.
“But Harry he can’t know because when we used the Time Turner and left The Burrow, time froze completely, remember?” said Hermione with a kind smile.
She had provided such a good argument that Harry could not find a retort to send back at her.
“You must have been dreaming mate,” said Ron.
Harry nodded in agreement, and no more was said on that subject.
“So where the hell are we then?” asked Ron to the tent at large. “It sure isn’t England out there,” he added as he held his lit wand aloft outside the tent’s entrance.
“Come back inside Ron!” said Hermione bossily.
As they all sat back down at the table that was now clear, Harry removed the Time Turner from his neck and placed it upon the table.
Hermione whispered, “Ostendo”, and as clear as day the thin slanting writing slid into focus. It read 5th January 1990.
“There you go, the start of the 19th century,” said Ron. “Now all we need to do is find out our location,” he continued
“No problem,” said Hermione as she raised her wand in an ark over the table, whispering, “Magicus Tabula”, and a long scroll appeared in her hands. She unfurled it, and placed it upon the table. “This is a Magical Atlas, and it can show you where you are within the world at any time,” she explained to Harry and Ron’s bemused looks. “All you have to do is cast one incantation upon the map,” she continued, placing her wand upon the Magical Atlas. Then she whispered, “Point me,” and her wand began to spin, the map changing its location to Albania.
“There you are, we are defiantly not in England, we are in Albania!” Hermione said impressively.
Ron looked at her in awe. “Are you positively sure that we are now in Albania?” he said as he took a closer look at the crimson dot on the map which marked their location.
“Absolutely positive Ron!” said Hermione in reply.
“Bloody Hell Hermione, you’re right. We are in Albania!” Ron said in a shocked tone as he stared at the atlas.
Harry suppressed a laugh. “Hermione is always right, Ron!” said Harry.
Hermione picked up her wand and placed it upon the tip of the ‘A’ in Albania.
“Engorgio!” she said. The map changed, and several seconds later, they could see many landmarks within Albania and the crimson dot had appeared on the location, ‘The Black Forest.’
“We are right in the centre of The Black Forest according to the map,” said Hermione. She waved her wand and the map rolled up and floated in mid air for a second before vanishing with a pop.
“The Black Forest is massive,” Ron complained. “How on earth are we to find the Horcrux?”
“Oh Ron do stop being so immature,” said Hermione bossily.
“Oh I don’t know, I think we will find the next Horcrux sooner than we think,” said Harry, with an air of adventure lingering within his voice.
Three hours later, around the stroke of midnight, Harry, Ron and Hermione were standing inside the tent entrance.
“I’m sure I just heard a noise outside,” Harry was saying to Ron and Hermione.
“Yeah, what did it sound like Harry?” asked Ron curiously.
“I – I suppose it was like something landing onto the forest floor out of the air,” said Harry. “Like a whooshing sort of sound,” he added hastily.
“Ssh,” Hermione said. “I think I hear something.”
Sure enough, Hermione was right once again. Harry had heard it too.
It happened three more times, then Ron said, “That is definitely no animal out there – that’s wizards and witches,” and sure enough they heard someone whisper “Incendo”, and the firelight from outside filled the tent, followed by voices.
“My Lord,” said the greasy voice of Lucius Malfoy.
“Yes Lucius, you wish to speak?” hissed Voldemort, who was looking more like a snake now than ever, not like when the trio had seen him at the cave and at Hephzibah’s mansion.
“Yes my lord,” replied Malfoy. “You confided within us now many a year ago that you were looking for an object in which you could place a piece of your soul.”
“Yes Lucius, that is entirely true,” Voldemort said with a thin and twisting smile upon his face.
“Well my lord –” Malfoy was cut across by Bellatrix Lestrange.
“My Lord, we, as you’re most loyal and trusted followers, have found you an object which is of great importance to you,” she said dramatically.
“Oh do get on with it Bellatrix,” snapped Avery.
“My lord –” Bellatrix began, but she was interrupted by Severus Snape.
“My lord, we have thought long and hard about this,” said Snape with an air of excitement in his voice. “Turn your companion Nagini into the Horcrux you wish to produce.”
“Well done all of you,” Voldemort said. Then all of a sudden he raised his head and spoke to the night in parsletonge. As he did so an enormous emerald serpent slid towards them through the thicket of black trees. Harry then realised what Voldemort was saying, as the Dark Lord had given he, Harry, the power to converse with snakes.
“Oh great King of serpents, come to me now,” Voldemort hissed. “I summon you, you must obey.”
And with that last word the great serpent appeared at Voldemort’s heels. The snake reared up and yet the Death Eaters did not flee. Voldemort then removed his wand from his billowing robes and looked around, just as a beautiful white peacock suddenly flew over to Severus.
Voldemort must have thought that it was an enemy; no doubt he assumed that it would be someone from the order. Whatever it was, it had to go. He faced the peacock, and uttered the most unforgivable curse in the world… the killing curse. The peacock was dead in an instant.
Voldemort turned to face Nagini and raised his wand in an ark over his head, crying in parsletonge to the snake, “Partiour meus solus.”
At this, Voldemort’s wand created a thick rope of light between himself and the snake; the beam of light forced it’s way towards the snake as it left Voldemort’s body, then it vanished, and the snake gave a little shudder.
“Now what?” said Hermione in a scared whisper.
“Hermione, I have a plan!” said Harry. “Just tell me this, I know they can’t see us, but can they attack us?” he asked, his nerves all of a jitter.
“No, if they try to curse us we have an advantage because I placed a rebounding curse upon this area,” said Hermione in response. “So basically in a nut shell, if they try and attack us their spells will rebound upon them and hit them instead,” she finished.
Harry then looked at Ron and they said in unison, “Excellent!”
Harry led the way out of the tent and they stood next to each other in a straight line, raised their wands in a synchronised motion, and picked their target.
Harry had the pleasure of taking on Voldemort, and they shot stunning spells and body binding curses as they were most effective.
“Who is there?” hissed Voldemort angrily. “Show yourself or we will duel you and kill you.”
They stood their ground firmly.
“They leave us no choice,” Voldemort said to his Death Eaters, and with his word they aimed curses towards the invisible tent.
However, they got a shock when their stunning spells rebounded upon them and hit them all in the chest. Finally only Nagini was left; the Death Eaters were all unconscious, Harry, Ron and Hermione knew what to do, but they had to act quickly. They conjured the Blue fire and it engulfed the black trees until it was blown away by the strong wind.
Screams of pure torture came from what seemed to be the snake, but Harry knew that those screams were coming from the piece of Voldemort’s soul that was encased inside the snake, which now resembled a pile of ashes.
That over, Hermione quickly ran to the beautiful peacock. They were one of her favourite animals, and she decided that it deserved to keep its dignity.
With a sense of purpose, she directed her wand to the ground and a hole appeared. Then pointing her wand at the peacock, it rose high into the air before falling lightly into the hole, fresh earth piling magically in a mound on top of its limp body. Hermione then raised her wand solemnly towards the night sky, and out of the tip burst what looked like many real stars. They floated gracefully in the air for a moment, then fluttered like glitter onto the ground, covering the grave with a sparkling carpet in the silence of the dark forest.