Search Home Read Write Forum Login Register
24 Hours Shichan Goddess Hour 20: Hour of Chance “There is no such thing as chance; And what to us seems merest accident Springs from the deepest source of destiny.” ~Friedrich von Schiller (1759-1805) Voldemort was a betting man. As he had told James Potter, this was nothing more than a game. *Life* itself was a game. A game where the stakes and risks were high, a game where everything and anything could be placed on the line at a moment’s notice. Because what sort of game brought the thrill, the *rush*, without a certain amount of peril being involved? He had allowed one of the members of the Order of the Phoenix to infiltrate his stronghold; he had even handed her a weapon—two very dangerous decisions that could easily be turned against him. The very idea of him allowing her to continue her charade was absolutely ludicrous. But he had. He had taken certain precautions, of course. No one could apparate or dissapparate to or from these grounds. Nor could she use that particular wand against him—he had taken the liberty of constructing a rather sturdy barrier to protect himself. And if she tried to use “Advera Kedavra”, well, there was always a Death Eater handy to thrust in the way… He had not prospered for so long to die by a silly girl’s hands. He simply was curious. Perhaps, if the outcomes were favorable, then he would show mercy by killing her before his men got to her. But then again…she was a mudblood. So perhaps not. And if the outcome were less favorable then he would just hand them over to his men for a bit of…fun. ************************************************************************************** Someone was tipping his head back, and he squinted vainly at the figure, but could discern no details. He was drifting on the outskirts of reality and into the land of delirium. But even with his feeble grasp on rhyme and reason, the pain made itself abundantly clear, and the familiar smell of Veritaserum wafted toward him across the room and registered in his memory sharply. So he did the only thing he could do. He resorted to being the soldier. He held no fear, nor even conscious decision. He only knew that it was his duty to protect the Order. Even at death’s door, he would not betray the Order. Would not betray Sirius, Remus, or Peter. Would not betray Dumbledore. Would not betray the *light*. And if it meant his death, then he welcomed his demise with open arms. ************************************************************************** “Goddamnit!” Sirius bellowed causing startled birds to fly squawking out of the dark green foliage. Remus turned to stare at him disapprovingly. “What are you doing Sirius? We’re in enemy territory, you can’t be giving us away.” Sirius growled deeply in his throat, and turned an enraged glare upon the werewolf. “I’m giving us away? *I’m* giving us away? Look at us, Remus! We’re wandering around with a *Death Eater* just itching to lead us right into the hands of Voldemort, and you’re worried that *I’m* the one giving us away?” Remus’ glared back, amber eyes dark and irritated. “We’ve discussed this, Sirius. We have no other option. Unless you’ve thought up a brilliant idea in the past hour and neglected to share it with us, then I see no other choice.” Sirius’ gaze dropped accusingly to the dirt beneath his feet. Grudgingly, he swallowed his anger and nodded imperceptibly. Remus caught it though, and gave a grunt of approval. He turned and continued to walk behind Severus. Sirius stood, staring at the back of Remus’ head for a moment, before slowly dragging his feet to follow. The forest was silent now, unnaturally silent, and the leaves crunched loudly underneath the soles of his feet. The silence would have been welcome by many, because it allowed discretion during the infiltration. To Sirius, however, it simply meant that he would be alone with his thoughts. So many witches and wizards had been taken from their ranks, but the Marauders had cheated death time and time again. Sirius could not find this lurching fear and the possibility of death to be *real*. He had lived through hardships, through emotional and physical pain. But death… It was final. Permanent. There were no spells that could instantly repair it. He had never even experienced the death of a pet. How could he face the prospect of that of his best friend’s? How could he fight in the war with such an empty, clawing knowledge that his best friend was gone…? It would make the war too dear, the whole pointlessness too real… // “We’ll live through the end of this war, won’t we mate?” James was silent for a moment. “We will win this war.” “Damn straight!” But despite his spirited response, Sirius realized uneasily that James hadn’t answered his question.// So how was he, Sirius, supposed to respond to the question that burning inside his own mind? And could he, *would* he, be able to accept the death of a brother? ****************************************************************************** Blast it all, Sirius. Are you bloody bleeding blind? Do you think that I find this *easy*? Honestly, Padfoot, I have just as many doubts as you do. Do you think I feel *safe* trusting our lives with a Death Eater who absolutely hates every fiber in our being? Do you think I’m comforted by the fact that we’re surrounded by utter silence? There’s nothing I’d like more than to blast into You-know-w—*Voldemort’s* fortress and rescue James and Lily without all this silly infiltration business. To hell with all the dangers and precautions. These are our *friends*. But it isn’t about what I want anymore. Don’t you understand, Sirius? It stopped being about what I wanted the instant James and Lily were captured. Above all, I want them to be safe. But that’s nothing but my whimsical fancy. Hoping and wanting—what good does that do you? We need to do something. Desperate times, desperate measures and all of that. So if I can help—even in the slightest way—then I will be content. To infiltrate with the element of surprise heightens their survival rate, and *that* is what is important. If we give up our lives trying to save James, then we die with honor and with no regrets. So don’t you ever, *ever* think that I’m doing this for the sake of our own lives. This is the best and only option we have. Why can’t you see that? ****************************************************************************** Lily had thought that the situation could not have gotten any worse. But in that fatal error, she had failed to remember *never* to challenge the power of worse. Garbed in Death Eater’s robes, she crept toward the prone figure on the floor. His eyes were half-shut, hazy and dulled with pain. Blood stained the side of his face, contrasting sharply against his pale pallor. His eyes had changed color once more, and they were a brilliant green; a reflection of her very own eyes. She knelt by him, hesitantly reaching out to touch him. She felt the weight of all the eyes upon her, and she roughly pulled his head onto her lap with a wince. James made no sound at all, staring blankly into her obscured mask. All the while she spat curses and taunts at him, her mouth working without thought to bring satisfaction among the masses. She looked at him, at his vacant face devoid of all caring before wondering tightly if he *knew*. If he *knew* whom his executioner was behind the thrice-damned mask. She tried desperately to communicate with her emerald eyes glowing eerily in the darkness. She had always been told that the eyes were the windows to the soul, and she wished that she could communicate exactly what she was thinking through them. She lifted the vial to his lips, and he turned his head away with a jerk, lips clenched shut. She slapped him, a sharp crack in the tense, eager silence, and his head flew back. It brought a wave of titters through the crowd, buying her a few minutes to contemplate desperately what she was going to do. . //I’m sorry,// her mind whispered as her heart screamed in agony. It clenched so tightly that she was afraid it would burst out of its chest cavity when his lolling head came to meet her eyes, and a corner of his mouth gently pulled itself up in a mockery of his usual grins. For a moment, clarity made itself into his gaze. He recognized her, gave her a small nod. He knew what she was supposed to do by the proverbial rulebook, and he accepted his death at her hands. Somehow, that hurt more than his condemnation. His eyes slowly drift shut, a small peaceful smile gracing his features. “Do it,” He breathed, and her grip tightened subconsciously on her borrowed wand. “Lily,” He whispered, his eyes gazing seriously, earnestly, into her own depths. “Please, please—kill me. I would rather die by your hand than by someone else’s. Please. If you have ever felt any compassion in your heart for me, do this.” A white noise made itself known in Lily’s ears and she could scarcely hear his next broken words over the pounding of her heart. “Please…” He breathed. “Please…kill me.” Lily shut her eyes, and took a deep breath, steadying herself. A hot burst of anger rushed through her being, and she replied hotly. “No.” James’ eyes darkened. “Lily…” “*No*, do you hear me?” She hissed as she leaned closer towards him. “You are not going to die by my hand. You are *not* going to die. You’re James bloody Potter, and if anyone can get us out of this situation, you can. We are going to get out of here alive and breathing, or so help me I will go down to hell myself and haunt you for eternity! Do you understand me, Potter?” James grimaced, then pressed his lips tightly together. “Lily, I can’t go anywhere in this condition, much less create an escape plan and carry it out. Why are you being so stubborn?” “Why are you giving up?” Lily countered. “So shut up and let me tell you what we’re going to do. Let me do all the work and just play along, okay?” His eyes clenched shut in sheer desperation. This was suicidal, and he knew it, and she knew it, and it could endanger the Order… “Please? Trust me.” Bah, women. He never could deny her anything. ****************************************************************************** Dumbledore stared blankly into the merrily cackling fire. Shadows danced across the warm room, but Albus saw nothing; felt nothing but a sickening twist in his stomach and a dreadful emptiness that threatened to engulf him. He felt a thousand tonight. He was alone in the room, but the spirits of the dead rested uneasily upon his conscience. The Order had lost so many bright and brilliant souls. It was war, after all, but the numerous deaths of his closest students did not grow any easier with the passing of time. He had just been informed of Lily and James’ disappearance. His heart lamented the imminent loss of his brightest pupils. He had come to think of them as the children he had never had. And he may have been an old man, but even he did not miss the sudden feeling of rightness whenever they were together. He had not missed the loving light in their eyes obscured by their toughened exterior. For such love to be snuffed out of existence… Dumbledore had endured many hardships in his life, but they all paled in respect to this. So he sat, helpless and alone with his demons and his dead. Yes, he felt a thousand tonight. ****************************************************************************** Lily took another deep, calming breath, and lifted the vial once more. James thrashed a bit, but without any real force behind it. She cursed at him, her hollow laughter resonating strangely in her ears. She attempted to obscure his face from view and began to pour the Veritaserum …right over his closed lips, tricking past his mouth and down the side of his face to his neck. She did so slowly, calculatingly searching for a hint of suspicion, for a hint of realization as to what she was doing, but found none. Perhaps this stupid plan would work after all. Perhaps Lady Luck would decide to smile their way. ************************************************************************** But Lady Luck is a fickle bitch. Lily’s treachery, contrary to her belief, had not gone unnoticed by all. //Evans, Evans, Evans. Do you really think so little of me? Oh, you hide what you’re doing extremely well. But you forget my dear, that I am Lord Voldemort. And I see all.// Such a pity. Rash, foolish mudblood attempting to save her partner. How utterly moronic. Just like a Gryffindor. Malfoy fumed, beside himself with anger. “My Lord,” He hissed. “May we intervene yet?” Voldemort acquiesced with a wave of his hand. ****************************************************************************** //Please, please, please let this work.// She felt the fantastic clenching in her gut as no one stopped her in her deception. She began to feel giddy with excitement and anxiety. The vial was half-empty now, and James’ would simply be sticky, not sprouting out the Order’s secrets. They were actually going to get away with this… The only thing that posed the question was what they would do afterwards. She hadn’t really gotten to that part of the plan quite yet, but she hadn’t been too certain they would survive this first step. But her fears for the future step proved unnecessary. Because as we said, Lady Luck is a bitch. The Veritaserum was plucked deftly out of her fingers. “Stand aside, mudblood!” Came the low, guttural cry from Malfoy as he shoved her aside. In moments, Lily found herself flat on her rump a few feet away, watching with disturbing fascination and utter helplessness as Malfoy pried James’ jaw open and poured the potent liquid down James’ throat. The crazed Death Eater methodically forced James’ jaw shut and plugged his nose, making it impossible to breathe. “Swallow,” Malfoy ordered hoarsely, a fanatical gleam in his cruel blue eyes. James thrashed wildly, desperately, but the human want for air finally won, and he gasped, swallowing. A/N: Again, SO SORRY for the delay in updating. This was an irritating chapter to write. But thanks to everyone’s constant support, I was able to get past by blasted writer’s block and throw out this chapter. I have planned out what I want for each of the next chapters, so hopefully they will be written quickly. Pardon my spelling errors, and once again, and huge THANK YOU to all my loyal reviewers who kick my ass and make me write! *Hugs* I really couldn’t have written this without all of you!

Track This Story: Feed

Write a Review

out of 10


Get access to every new feature the moment it comes out.

Register Today!