Chapter 3: After hours Jessica was marching along streets with no way of knowing exactly where she was going. She relied on her vision that was now the only thing she could see. Her brain somehow knew where to go, which seemed to be really far away. She had been walking for about 5 hours, and still the scenery didn’t look like the vision. Her legs were shaking from walking so long, but she had to get to Grimmauld Place, quickly. So she therefore walked past a bench, only pausing long enough to imagine sitting down on it before continuing on. Once night had fallen, really fallen to where Jessica couldn’t see where the sky and the ground changed places, Jessica looked around to see if there was someplace she could take a quick nap until sunrise. She spotted a little bench, under a tree. She figured the tree would be good in case it decided to rain. She took her little bag of clothes for a pillow, and curled up and fell asleep almost immediately. Up above her, her little owl friend was in the branches, watching over her. Jessica was in more danger then she could imagine. She had put herself into the danger by leaving the house. Harry had warned the owl that she was to stay there until he convinced some people to go rescue her. But before the owl could warn her, she had left, and he had no choice but to follow her as she wandered. Now he had to become a sort-of “watch owl” to protect her in case the dark shadows held more then just that-dark shadows. Jessica didn’t know any of what was going on above her, but her dreams were troubled nonetheless. The tree above her split in half, in which a dark swirling mist flew out of it and sped off. Next, there were clouds, pulsing and full of different energy. They would come lower and lower, surround her, and then spread out in all directions, finally disappearing. Her last nightmare was one that would wake her, and one that she would never forget. It was a warning, but she wouldn’t realize exactly what it meant until it was too late. She was walking in a dark tunnel. There were people behind her, she could hear them talking, but they were of no threat to her. They were her friends. But as she walked, it became darker and darker. She would take passages that led off to her left and right, but she knew she was not getting closer to whatever was hidden there. It was something she wanted, more then anything else in the world. It was her one true desire. Jessica suddenly felt as if she was alone, completely and terribly alone. She looked behind her, mystified at where everyone went. But suddenly there was a presence, but it wasn’t the friendly ones of before. It was filled with a feeling so evil, so horrible that it made the hairs on the back of her neck stand up. She suddenly knew if she turned around, terrible things would happen. But she didn’t even have the chance to run. Before she knew what was happening, a hand grabbed her and shoved her headfirst into the wall. She fell back, conscious but just barely. She looked desperately around for something, anything to fight her attacker with, but before she could, she was hit with a jet of red light. It was more painful then anything she could ever have imagined. She was screaming, begging for it to stop, to release her… The owl watched as Jessica thrashed around on the bench below. He was very worried, but something moved right when he was about to go fly down and wake her. He only had to glance over to see that the something was carrying what looked to be a tiny stick of wood. Immediately the owl flew off, stopping only to peck Jessica’s cheek in warning. She sat upright, sweating and shaking. The dream Jessica had just been having was so real. She tried to think about it, about all of her nightmares, when she realized that there was something here besides herself. She looked left, right, and finally behind her. She had time to register a man with a mask on holding out what looked like a wand. Seeing the wand pointed right at her, she instinctively ducked. The curse that flew from the wand sunk into the tree. Jessica stood up, facing her attacker. He was growling, walking around the bench, trying to get a clear shot. Her first thought was to throw something-like the bench-at him, but the back of her mind told her that she should refrain from using her own magic. Therefore she had to rely on her ducking abilities, which thankfully were full of adrenaline and ready to be of use. She knew that sooner or later this man would get her though, and then what? She didn’t know anything about wand magic. She had been on her journey to find out about it, and here she was facing her first test. One that she hadn’t studied for. After ducking and rolling out of the way of 5 curses, the man spoke. “Stop playing games like a little baby,” the voice was cold, dripping with darkness. “I can help you find out exactly what you need to know. I’m trying to help you.” Jessica laughed. She knew she must seem stupid, ducking little light streams, but she knew that he would never help her. “Yeah right!” she said, and quickly jumped to her left to avoid another curse. The evil man took in a hiss of breath. “Fine, you leave me no choice.” Jessica watched in horror as he lifted his wand. She seemed paralyzed to the ground. She heard him say the word ‘Avada’ before he was lifted off his feet and thrown to the ground, some twenty feet away. He did not move. Wildly, Jessica looked around. She stared in the darkness, seeing nothing, then jumped slightly at hearing a soft hoot. The owl came and landed on her shoulder. She relaxed tremendously. “What are you doing here, little owl? Watching over me, eh?” “Actually, he was. You gave us quite a scare, running away from your house before we were ready for you.” A kind voice said, its owner stepping out of the shadows. At first glance, the man seemed to be old. His face had many lines and scratches on it and his hair was graying, but his blue eyes were alert and watchful. She noticed his robes seemed very shabby. He walked toward her, put his wand away, and extended his hand. “Remus Lupin. Part of the Order of the Phoenix. Mr. Harry Potter told me to rescue you when the owl told us you had left. Now, if you’ll come with me, I’ll take you back to headquarters. It’s a bit of a walk still, so I have a different way.” He took an old CD from his pocket and held it out to her. She stared. What was she supposed to do with a CD? Listen to it? She couldn’t help trusting this man, but she didn’t feel like taking a perfectly harmless CD from a complete stranger. Perhaps he was a little mad, she thought. Her thoughts must have shown on her face because Lupin chuckled. “Never used a portkey before, have you? Well, it’s easy. All you do is grab onto it, and it’ll transport you to wherever it has been decided on beforehand. This particular one will lead us to Grimmauld Place. Come on, come on, hurry!” She grabbed hold, hesitantly. Lupin smiled and muttered “hold on” before she felt herself pulled from the ground, seemingly from her belly button. She was swirling through space and time, and finally came to a stop on an unkempt lawn. She fell over, and looked up at Lupin, completely winded. He smiled. “Happens to everyone.” She got up and brushed herself off. Lupin handed her a piece of paper with spindly writing. “Read this and memorize, then repeat it inside your head.” Jessica looked down: The Headquarters of the Order of the Phoenix may be found and Number 12, Grimmauld Place. Lupin took the piece of paper and made it vanish within the blink of an eye. She thought hard about what she had just read, and watched in amazement as a house grew out of nowhere. She recognized it instantly as the house from her vision. “Be quiet once you get inside,” Lupin warned, and with a tap of his wand, the door opened. Jessica walked in, feeling calmer than she had for the past two months. That all changed when she saw an old wizard step out of a doorway, fury etched upon every line in his face. Jessica gasped and backed into a wall as he took his wand out and pointed it straight at her heart.
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