Chapter Seventeen: Decisions
Dennis sat at one of the desks and propped his booted feet up his mind elsewhere as he thought about the conversation he had had with Hermione. Colin. He winced. Colin who had a hero worship for Potter and the ideals that he lived up to. He wouldn’t have agreed with this, the hunters. It was Colin not Dennis that kept the two of them safe while on the run.
Dennis remembered the last year of the war and grimaced. When the Muggleborn registration committee had knocked on their door only months after Dumbledore had died, the boys were forced to flee. On the run and starving, they still were able to connect with some of the DA members all the while avoiding the Snatchers. It was Colin who went back to Hogwarts for the final battle, despite knowing that his adversaries were grown wizards and they were more powerful than him. He faced the possibility of his death fearlessly, believing that the cause was important enough to die for. It was immaterial that Dennis had followed him into the school. The only thing that mattered in the end was that Colin was dead and Dennis became the leader of the hunters. What a way to repay his brother for the hard-won year of safety.
He looked around the room. Some of his men used to be the very Snatchers they avoided and at times dueled. The moment they felt the winds of change, their whole demeanor changed. They went from being Snatchers to Hunters seamlessly. What did that say about his organization? He knew that it had turned into something much darker than he meant it to. In the beginning, he had just wanted to save those Muggleborn children who had no protection. He wanted to be the hero. Instead he became little more than a mob boss. Colin would be so disappointed.
Also, he thought with derision, Hermione was clearly not impressed with him. He wasn’t the type to say it out loud but her opinion had mattered a lot to him. He had been laboring under the delusion that she was being shy, that they were going slow. That perhaps she felt something for him too. He had a huge crush on the witch and it had gone from something innocent to something slightly obsessive. He knew that she wouldn’t be impressed with that at all. If he was ever going to get a chance with her, things had to change. He was man enough to look at what the wizarding world had been reduced to and was repulsed. He helped create this. He was not a savior, he wasn’t even in the resistance. He was the fuel of nightmares to his own people. He was a traitor. He gnashed his teeth with frustration. Hermione was definitely not impressed and never would be.
“We are going to destroy Redcar and make sure all of the inmates are released.” He waited for the derision of his men. Every person that was sent to Redcar was placed there by their own hand except a few of the children from the beginning. Children that he didn’t even know if they were still alive.
“It’s about bloody time!” Seamus Finnegan said with a smirk.
“First, we need a plan of attack.” Dennis muttered.
“Done!” Seamus said as he swept the tabletop clean, letting the parchments and various objects fall to the floor in a huge mess. He moved closer to the table and pulled a large roll of parchment out of his robes and began unfurling it, setting small paper weights around the edges to hold the paper down. He pushed Dennis’ boots off the table with a devilish smirk.
“What the hell?” Dennis demanded.
“Cresswell and I have been working with Hermione for months to save people from that camp. She’s an incredible woman that one…” He trailed off, staring off into space. Dennis snapped his fingers in front of his face.
“Right. Well, we need to have three groups. Whatever wards they have, must come down. Alicia Spinet and Bill Weasley will join us. Together they will take down the wards. Then, Cresswell and his group will need to go in first and liberate the children from that house of terror. That needs to be done quickly and efficiently. We can’t have the guards lock down that building and make it harder for us to ensure their safety. Also, we have two men inside, Theo Nott and Lucius Malfoy. They have been in there for days holding off any experimentation of the children at a great personal cost. I doubt they will be able to leave on their own steam. Two men need to apparate them to Hermione at the Manor.”
“I’ll do it.” One of the younger hunters offered.
“And me.” Dean Thomas stood in the doorway, his boots muddy and his clothes a wreck.
“Did you find out where they are keeping Harry and Ron?” Seamus asked him, taking over command from Dennis seamlessly.
“The main building where the guards sleep. Other than that, you know as much as I do.” Dean shrugged. With a nod, Seamus turned back to the parchment on the table.
“Alright! Second group will be led by me, which will be called the main force. We are going in and shutting the whole thing down. We are the main battle that will help distract the other guards. We will enter here and here.” He gestured to the blueprints of Redcar. “The last group led by Dennis will be a small strike force. Harry and Ron are being held in the main building. Here.” He stabbed a small rectangular building with his finger. “I don’t know where or what level. That is your job. Find our heroes and get them out. All survivors can be taken to Malfoy Manor if they want or they can go home. Whatever they want. Medical attention can be found at the Manor. Any questions.”
“Just one,” Dennis said, staring at the two men who obviously have been working on this for a long time. “When do we go.”
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