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And You Will be My Ain True Love

You’ll walk unscathed through musket fire,
No ploughman’s blade will cut thee down,
Not cutlass wound will mark thy face,
And you will be my ain true love,
And you will be my ain true love.







My Ain True Love


Only the ancient Rowan tree stood witness, a sentinel in the deepest darkest part of night.

Her anguished cries, a lament carried away on the wind - a disjointed soliloquy of grief and supplication.

Hitching sobs racked her trembling body. She wrapped her arms tightly around her body, seeking comfort in repetitious uncontrollable rocking against grief and despair. Muttered unintelligible words escaped from her dry, parched lips. A torrent of tears fell down ashen cheeks unchecked.

She had collapsed in defeat upon the dew-laden, mist-enshrouded ground, her arms splayed on the ground in prayer, a posture of humility and supplication; her fingers scratching deep grooves into the moist soil.

“Bring him back to me, bring him back to me, bring him back to me…” Again, her petition was borne on the wind. She hoped that her invocation would be pleasing to the Creator's will; that her prayer of intercession would not be in vain.

Biting the inside of her arm to draw the pain deep within her to the surface, she entreated, “I’ll do anything, give anything, give up everything, please, please, keep him safe…” Biting down harder, breaking the skin.

“My love, my love, my love…” The despair washed over her in waves of grief and longing. Her traitorous mind played the image of his broken body and lifeless eyes over and over – a life that would be no more. It drained her of her strength, of her hope; she was paralyzed by her fear and terrified that her lack of faith would bring her vision to fruition.

I would take this cup from him. I would bargain with the Fates; my life that his be spared. Would that my love could sustain him, protect him.

An inner strength suddenly surged through her veins as an intuitive realization empowered her thoughts and brought hope to her afflicted heart. Pushing herself up onto her knees, she pointed her wand to the palm of her hand. sectus she muttered, creating a small incision, blood pooling in her palm.

She held the bleeding hand over the earth.

“By the magic that is within me, let it be. I consecrate the earth with my blood, that the power of my love will protect him in battle. Let no magic strike him down. Let no man bring him harm. Let not Dark Magic prevail over him. Let death pass over him. I call upon the Progenitor of the Light: bring my love back to me. And if it is pleasing, may his life be spared. Let my magic be taken from me and more also, if nothing but death part us. iacta alea est.

“The die is cast,” she whispered.

Her supplication was carried on the wind, the Rowan tree the only witness to her entreaty.


~ ~



He walked among the combatants as if in a dream.

What had been the overwhelming cacophony of war that surrounded him and enveloped all his senses had suddenly gone silent. He could only hear the rapid beating of his heart and the rush of his breathing inside his head; it had the calming sensation of being underwater, a rhythmic hum of his senses. He was a detached observer to the theatre of war, observing as if in a trance, outside of him, outside of the moment. The battle around him was waged in silence, and it seemed to decelerate before his eyes.

He could no longer hear the cries of the wounded, maimed and dying. The rush of spells, the cannon-like roar of multiple Bludgeoning curses impacting on the ground and throwing clumps of earth and wizard alike through the air in a grotesque aerobatic display of severed limbs and dismembered bodies, the loud crack of broken bones buffeting the ground that almost made him retch only moments ago – all of these had ceased, and all that was left was blessed silence.

The fear was debilitating; he could not move, he could not act as spells were fired all around him. He watched in impotent horror as friends that he had laughed with, studied with, played with, lived with and fought with, fell before him, their eyes open and vacant in death. Children, all just children! Playing at war. What made them think that they could fight against older and more hardened Wizards and win? They were as lamb to the slaughter, these brave but foolish child-warriors, their blood nourishing the earth. The god of war gorging itself on the life-blood of the innocent. This war forsaken by all that was good and right, fought by the young as ultimately all wars were as grey-haired men and their counsels of war sent them to their death.

An image unbidden and horrific in its intensity crashed down upon him, leaving him frail and empty in its wake as he stood witness to yet another young Wizard falling before the onslaught of spells. My Love! Her eyes vacant in death, her body broken and crushed on the ground lying in a pool of blood. Her beautiful expressive eyes never to look upon him with love, her face lit from within with love for him and hope for their future, her smile radiant and pleasing to his very senses. Her warm body pressed to his as he kissed her soft lips, now cold and unmoving in death.

“No!” A primordial cry was wrenched from the depth of his very soul. The tableau of war before him became illusory and dream-like. His mind and heart were filled with the strength of his resolve. He moved forward, wand in hand. his movements, as if through water seemed to him slow, sluggish.

Those that stood witness to his battle cry and the indiscernible movements of his wand as he fired spells at an inhuman speed were struck with either fear or hope.

At the commencement of battle, bolstered by their master's presence, these masked and hooded cowards fought with cold, calculating precision. A sense of pleasure and triumph heated their blood as they perceived the easy victory that would soon be at hand. Was this the best the side of Light had to offer? Sending inexperienced children to wage war against seasoned killers? But now, the masked combatants felt a shiver of fear course through their veins, their blackened hearts constricting in abject terror at the sound and fury of what was taking place before their stunned and unbelieving eyes.

In direct opposition to the foreboding that now chilled their aggressors to the very marrow of their bones, a sense of hope and courage strengthened the hearts of the Children of Light. They had come to realize that there was no glory to be wrought in war, only the pervasive scent of fear and death, oppressive and suffocating. They had marched off to war, visions of valour heady and intoxicating, guilelessly unaware of the price that would be exacted of them. Pain, sacrifice, and death - these three things were as fixed as the sun. Victory was a vague ideal to be attained but by no means fixed and determined. Their cause, though just, did not assure them triumph over their enemy. But as they stood witness to the representation of power that seemed to emanate from whom the Wizarding world had hailed and reviled as the Chosen One – they hoped and their hope gave them courage.

Whether due to the deafening roar and flashing lights of the raging battle, none could hear the spells that were cast nor see the movement of his lips as he fired spell after spell towards the hooded and masked figures as they fell before the barrage of his spells.

Even as he fought with brutal detachment and precision, he could see, his vision as if in a tunnel, the instigator of so much pain, suffering and grief, surveying the destruction before him as a warlord of old, the sight before his red snake-like eyes pleasing to him. The malevolent entity seemed to glide among the casualties of war, his diaphanous black cloak swirling around him on a self-contained wind.

Without conscious thought, the champion for the Light walked towards his destiny, perhaps to his destruction. The only certainty in his heart was that if he were to die this day, then he would take this evil with him. Of that and only that was he certain. He could sense his powers coalesce within him, he could feel her love give him strength and he knew though he could not see her that his love was near. Her love gave him strength; it flowed through his body in rolling waves of power.

As if he sensed the resolve and burgeoning dominion of his adversary's power, the self proclaimed Lord of the Dark turned to witness the determined stride of his foe toward him. For a moment, an emotion spread through his body like ice, an emotion he had not been familiar with since his childhood – the Dark Lord felt fear pool in his stomach.

Pushing aside the trepidation he felt coursing through the body he had recreated, the Dark Lord stood before the Paladin of Light, despotic, contemptuous and assured in his ability to eradicate this idealistic fool from existence.

No words were spoken as the powers of good and evil were tested; there could only be one victor this day. They each pointed their wands towards their antagonist, forgetting in the heat of battle that their cores could not be used against the other. As the force of their spells touched, a dark shade-like sphere enveloped them. This seemed to please the Dark Lord as his magic seemed to be overwhelming his opponent. He watched in satisfaction the grimace of pain that crossed the features of the boy before him. The look of triumph soon turned to apprehension as the sphere slowly began to turn a bright white, growing larger and expanding out. The force of their magic each fighting for supremacy as the green beam of light emanating from his wand was being returned to him by the red beam of light from the wand of his nemesis.

"I am Lord Voldemort the Heir of Slytherin, the Dark Lord, the most powerful wizard of the age. I will not be defeated!." But as these thoughts raged in the Dark Lords mind, the fear returned as an emotion he was wholly unfamiliar with began to permeate his senses, a feeling so foreign and alien to him that he did not recognise its signature, only the pain it wrought, slowly giving him the understanding of what he was truly feeling.

The feeling was love.

His sneer of disdain and contempt for the man-child before him was stricken from his countenance as the realisation of his fate loomed before him. This puppet of the Dark Arts, this aberration of the laws of nature whose arrogance and contempt of the one emotion he rejected as weak and pathetic would fall before the very emotion he had renounced. In his arrogance and fear he repeated the same error he had already committed those many years ago - he had underestimated the power of love.

His eyes dilated in the throes of excruciating pain, as his body was wracked with all the anguish and suffering he had caused throughout his miserable existence. Dark shades surrounded him, grabbing at his robes, tearing at his skin, searing unendurable pain. The torture of his body was as nothing to the agony of grief playing out in his mind. Eyes, he saw the eyes of all those he had tortured and killed. Righteous, innocent eyes, judging and measuring his soul. Condemning him to an eternity of torment.

Mercy! He begged as he fell to his knees afflicted, mind, body and spirit.

"Mercy is not for you." The unholy hiss of a thousand voices called to him as the Shades enveloped him in a black shroud, until the man that was once Tom Marvolo Riddle was no more.

The white sphere reverberated with a deafening boom, a rush of wind and the sound of distant thunder in its wake. A cry of agony could be heard carried in the rush of the wind as the supporters of the Dark writhed in pain and then were no more.

At the culmination of the centrifugal explosion lay the Warrior of Light. Motionless as if in death.


~ ~



She could feel within her very soul the struggle for the Light as the wands of the champions for Dark and Light connected.

Her intention to heal the wounded at the inception of the battle had turned into a struggle for survival as she fought with Wizards much more learned in the art of war than she. But she fought with all that was within her, she must survive this battle to live another day. She had made a solemn vow in the face of his despair, in his unreasoning desire to keep her safe, she had promised to survive. A promise she would come to regret. What value, what meaning would her life have without his love, without him in it?

Her magical reserves waning, she knew that she could not hold out much longer and just as the elder Malfoy removed his Death Mask and sneered at her in triumph of her eminent death by his hands, a plea for her love to forgive her weakness on her lips the Death Eater before her began to scream in pain falling to his knees clutching at the Dark Mark on his forearm.

A deafening explosion and a rush of wind knocked her to the ground. Regaining consciousness as if from a long, drugged sleep, she had no sense of time passing or how long she had lain on the cold blood soaked ground. As she slowly became aware of her surroundings, her first thoughts were of him.

"Harry!"

She struggled to her feet, wading through the bodies, oblivious to the horror that lay before her. She called out his name, softly at first, unconsciously respectful to the ones whose blood consecrated this now most hallowed of grounds. But as her fear gathered in the very pit of her stomach, her cries grew louder in her desperation to find him. She purposefully kept her gaze on the horizon as she searched for him. He was not dead! No! He would be walking back to her. He would not be on the ground, he could not be dead.

She saw him in the distance, lying motionless in a shallow crater that must have been created by the blast of White Magic. She ran to him, stumbling and picking herself up several times, her knees weak with fright. Please don't be dead! Please don't be dead.

"Harry!" she screamed, running towards him, breathless in her fear. "Harry!"

Please don’t let him be dead, please don’t let him be dead. Her mind repeated in her desperation, a mantra, her heart beating fiercely in her chest.

She fell to her knees beside his body. He lay face down, splayed on the cold, hard ground. Her trembling hands on his shoulders turned him over to face her. His face was pale and her shaky fingers lovingly caressed his cold face. Her body covered his as her warm lips kissed his unresponsive mouth. She exhaled deeply, her breath hot on his cold lips as if attempting to give him the very breath of life from her own body. Breathe for me my love, breathe. She willed it, it would be, it must be.

“Damn you Harry, you can’t leave me here alone!" Her hands fisted on his robes, white-knuckled in their grip, shaking him and pounding on his chest.

“Don’t leave me here alone, please, please don’t leave me.” Her voice broke as the pain seemed to overwhelm her, making her lose all sense of her surroundings, all sense of self. Only Harry mattered, the coldness of his skin, his motionless body, the stillness of his chest. The sudden burst of anger left her, leaving her bereft and weak with its departure. She looked down upon him, her hot tears pooling on his unresponsive face, causing salted tracks to form. She kissed his lips again, soft feathered strokes, her hands splayed across his face, her fingers buried in his hair, sweetly caressing, brushing his hair, his temple. She took one of his hands, brought it to her lips and then placed it back on his chest.

He could not be gone from her, out of her reach. They had never said the words. It was an unspoken covenant. They would wait to speak of their love, as if to cheat the Fates. The Fates would not be so cruel as to allow their love to go unspoken. He would live to tell her that he loved her. He would live that she could finally speak of her love.

"I never said the words. I never told you, please, my love, I need to say the words." She fell upon his chest. Her sobs sprang from the depths of her very soul. A keening wail was wrought from her body, a cry so painful, so wretched that she thought she would die from the pain and grief.

He was no more.

The intensity of her sobs abated, though her tears continued to fall unheeded from her grief-enshrouded eyes. Lifting her head, she placed feathered kisses upon his beloved face, his mouth, his temple and finally his scar, her warm breath fanning his cheek. Lowering her head further, she brought her lips to his ear to whisper the words she had held within her heart as a treasured gift. The words that could not be spoken until this very moment.

"I love you"

Her words, though whispered, seemed to carry to the very Creator she had prayed to in her moment of despair on the eve of battle. Into this desolate silence, a sharp intake of breath was heard as the chest that lay beneath her seemed to expand to take in the breath that been denied him only moments before. Verdant eyes snapped open to pierce brown with an intensity that took her own breath from her lungs.

The silence seemed to extend unto eternity as their love was communicated through their eyes.

Trembling hands reached up to cup her face, softly, gently, slowly drawing her closer to touch his now heated lips to hers. A kiss - so simple and wondrous an act held within its intention all the love that had been denied yet could not be contained. He tasted the salt on her lips, tears that had only moments before had been a manifestation of her grief but were now an expression of her love.

"I love you." The words were drawn from his very core as his heart echoed and beat in response to the call of hers.

That which could not be held or touched or measured, the indomitable power that had defeated what had once been perceived to be the insurmountable strength and will of evil, beat within their hearts.

That power was love.

Only the ancient Rowan tree stood as a silent witness to their love.







Author's Note:

I dedicate this story to all the wonderful friends I've made in the grand adventure I've come to know as fanfiction.

However it would be remiss of me not to offer a special thank you to:

Rubysquill for her wonderful beta work on this chapter.
Intromit and Fake a Smile, well just because...
Cwarbeck for the unenviable task of correcting my grammar.
Tyler for our mutual love of languages and particularly his assistance in Latin






Author's Note Part Deux:

Why this song as a title? The simple truth is I was listening to it obsessively as I wrote this one-shot. I hate, loathe and detest song-fics. I feel that putting lyrics within the context of a story to be distracting. Nor have I ever found any song-fics that capture the essence of the song that inspired them in the first place. This chapter was written as a literary study in my attempt to write a descriptive action scene. I don’t think I captured that and I feel that my experiment was a bit of a failure. Basically, I was inspired by a genre I dislike, repeating the inability to capture the essence within the songs lyrics and to compound my aggravation was unsuccessful in my intended endeavour. Oh, well, either way, I wrote this because I had to and regardless of my personal views on its shortcomings; it is my hope that it is pleasing to the reader. ~ Enchanted

You Will be my Ain True Love…

You’ll walk unscathed through musket fire,
No ploughman’s blade will cut thee down,
Not cutlass wound will mark thy face,
And you will be my ain true love,
And you will be my ain true love.

And as you walk through deaths dark veil,
The cannon’s thunder can’t prevail,
And those who hunt thee down will fail,
And you will be my ain true love,
And you will be my ain true love.

Asleep inside the cannon’s mouth,
The Captain cries, “Here comes the route”,
They’ll seek to find me North and South,
I’ve gone to find my ain true love.
I’ve gone to find my ain true love.

The field is cut and bleeds to red,
The cannon balls fly round my head,
The infirmary man may count me dead,
When I’ve gone to find my ain true love,
I’ve gone to find my Ain true love.

Lyrics by Sting ~
From the Motion Picture Soundtrack of Cold Mountain

The Rowan Tree…

A bit about the Rowan tree at the beginning of this chapter.

I found it to be quite interesting that I chose this tree quite unconscious of its folklore or reputation. It would appear that Carl Jung was onto something when he theorized about the Collective Unconscious – Hah, the quack! I pulled this little tidbit off the Internet when I was checking my spelling, so here it is for your edification. Hey, you never know it may pop up on a Trivial Pursuit question.

In the British Isles the Rowan has a long and still popular history in folklore as a tree which protects against witchcraft and enchantment. The physical characteristics of the tree may have contributed to its protective reputation, including the tiny five pointed star or pentagram on each berry opposite its stalk (the pentagram being an ancient protective symbol).

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