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- Ginny Weasley Harry Potter Hermione Granger Luna Lovegood Neville Longbottom Ron Weasley Remus Lupin Sirius Black Severus Snape
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Published: 02/04/2006Updated: 09/22/2006Words: 120,316Chapters: 21Hits: 91,514
Harry Potter and the Daemon Sidhe
- Story Summary:
- In the aftermath of the events of the Ministry, Harry is in dire need of help. That help arrives in the form of six mysterious people, along with his friends and even foes, who give him the strength and support he will need to defeat Voldemort. Written post-OotP but will take some factors of HBP into account.
Chapter 17 - 17
- Chapter Summary:
- Severus returns to teaching and Harry to his classes. Harry makes a speech and examines Severus' Dark Mark.
Harry was woken the next morning by the sound of a quiet but ferocious argument. He opened his eyes and saw the very blurry figures of Severus and Poppy Pomfrey. He groped for his glasses and put them on. Once that was done he could see that Severus was just finishing with buttoning up his robes while Poppy argued with him about the fact that he was up in the first place.
"Severus, you need to rest! Those wounds were serious and to have fabric rub against them all day will only slow the healing process," she said urgently.
Severus turned enough for Harry to see the healing scar that ran down the older man's face and throat.
"I am aware of this, Poppy," Severus said calmly. "But you know I have taught with worse than this. I cannot and will not spend any more time away from my duties."
Poppy's lips thinned and she seemed to be reigning in her temper and frustration with difficulty. "You do not have a role to maintain now, Severus. Please, I am asking you to rest."
Severus seemed to pause for a moment. He finished with his robes and looked down at the school nurse. "I must maintain my image even more now, Poppy," he said in what was almost kindness. "The Dark Lord is now my enemy as much as he is Potter's. I cannot be seen to be cowering away from him."
Harry was surprised to hear Severus say something like that to Madam Pomfrey. He realised he must have transmitted that surprise through the bond when the Potions Master's eyes flickered briefly over to him.
Poppy sighed. "Very well. I just ask that you please refrain from wandering all over the school at all hours until those wounds are properly healed."
Severus nodded and walked out of the Hospital Wing. Poppy watched him go then turned to Harry, giving a start when she realised he was awake.
"Well, good morning, Mr Potter," she said briskly. "You're looking much better this morning."
"I'm feeling much better this morning," Harry said. "Can I leave?"
Madam Pomfrey gave him an arch look. "I will thank you to not start emulating Professor Snape if at all possible. One of him is more than enough."
Harry grinned and looked at her imploringly. "May I please leave, Madam Pomfrey?"
He actually managed to startle a laugh out of the school nurse. "I will be the judge of that," she said firmly as she pulled out her wand and checked him over. Finally she sighed. "Well, there doesn't seem to be anything wrong with you. Yes, you can go. If you start feeling dizzy or nauseous or anything else, please come and see me immediately. I believe your godfather left some clothes for you."
With one last stern look, Madam Pomfrey bustled out of the ward and Harry pushed back his blankets. He quickly dressed and hurried out of the Hospital Wing before the school nurse could change her mind. He ran up to Gryffindor Tower and had a quick shower before dressing in his uniform, grabbing his bag and making his way down to the Great Hall where he figured he could catch the end of breakfast. As he jogged down the stairs, he reached out to his court.
Madam Pomfrey's let me out! he said cheerfully. I'm almost at the Great Hall.
He was bombarded by happy and relieved replies from his court which made his entry into the Great Hall much easier, particularly when the students who were still lingering over their breakfast fell into silence the moment he entered.
Ignore the idiots, Hermione said scornfully. There's still plenty of breakfast left.
Harry took a deep breath and decided to follow Hermione's advice. He walked over to the Gryffindor table and sat down in the space that had suddenly appeared between Hermione and Ginny. A quick glance up at the teachers' table showed him that Sirius and Remus were watching him anxiously. Both men smiled and relaxed when he grinned at them. He then looked along and found Severus sitting in his normal place, looking more forbidding than usual with the livid, red scar running down one side of his face. The Potions Master nodded politely to him and Harry returned the gesture. This show of politeness between those who were normally at each other's throats sent the students, the Slytherin table in particular, into frantic murmuring.
Harry rolled his eyes and served himself some eggs, bacon and tomato. "Do you think everyone's going to do that all day?" he asked quietly. "Examine my every move and dissect it to death."
"Probably," Ron said through a mouthful of toast.
"Lovely," Harry said dryly then concentrated his attention on his food.
Hermione looked disapprovingly at both Harry and Ron. "Honestly Ron," she scolded. "Do you have to talk with your mouth full and Harry, slow down. You don't need to inhale your breakfast like that. There's plenty of time until classes start."
"Yes, Mum," Ron said through another mouthful of toast while Harry gestured absently with his fork as he continued shovelling food into his mouth.
Hermione took a deep breath but was interrupted by Ginny.
"They're teasing you, Hermione," she said in a tone reminiscent of her mother. "They're not doing it very well though, probably because they're boys."
Hermione grumbled for a moment then fixed Ron with a firm look. "And don't call me 'Mum'! I am not your mother."
Ron grinned at her. "I know," he said in a sly tone. "Definitely not my mother."
Hermione blushed suddenly and Harry, Neville and Ginny all laughed. The boys finished their breakfasts and they stood.
"It's...Wednesday, isn't it?' Harry said. "I did only lose one day in the Hospital Wing?"
"Yes, it's Wednesday," Hermione replied. "We have Transfiguration then Charms then I have Magical Law. We also have our first Practical Defense class with Moody after lunch."
"That'll be interesting," Harry said dryly. "I wonder how much the fake Moody was like the real Moody?"
"He must have been pretty close," Neville said as the Sixth Years headed for their class, waving goodbye to Ginny as they did so. "He managed to fool the Headmaster for most of the year."
"True," Harry said.
"As long as he leaves the spiders alone, I don't much care," Ron said with a shudder.
The others snickered as they walked into the classroom and settled in their seats, ignoring the curious glances from the other students. They quickly composed themselves when Professor McGonagall walked into the room.
"Mr Potter, the Headmaster would like to speak to you and your friends after classes are finished for the day. The password is Ice Mice," McGonagall said crisply before she began the class.
Harry exchanged glances with Ron, Hermione and Neville and slumped down in his seat.
The Headmaster wants to talk to us after classes in case you haven't been informed, he said to rest of his court in tones of exasperation.
Calm down, Harry, Remus replied. You knew this was going to happen.
And he did include all of us in it, Sirius pointed out.
He has called a staff meeting for tonight as well, Severus added. Timed for after our meeting with him. The remaining staff will need to be informed of what has happened and will happen. If for no other reason than if events such as yesterday's occur again.
Harry sighed. I know. He then turned his attention to the lesson before Professor McGonagall could notice his distraction.
The four Sixth Years walked out of their Practical Defence class looking tired though not with the complaints of their classmates. It seemed their training in Dreamtime had given them a slight advantage in the rather physical work Moody was putting them through in his class. The paranoid ex-Auror had been very pleased with Harry and his friends, something which had annoyed Malfoy no end, particularly when the blond Slytherin lost points for not putting enough effort in.
The four friends headed towards the Headmaster's office, having made plans at lunchtime to meet the others outside the gargoyle. They wanted to go up as a group, not individually. They got there to find Remus and Sirius waiting for them, leaning against a wall and exchanging teasing remarks. Sirius ruffled his godson's hair when they joined the two men.
"Have fun in Moody's class?" he asked.
"Sort of," Harry replied, rolling his eyes. "We handled what he wanted okay but...he's really paranoid, isn't he?"
"You noticed," Remus said dryly.
"Ah, Moody's alright," Sirius replied expansively. "When a man's had that many Dark witches and wizards attack him, he's earned the right to be a tad paranoid."
Harry shrugged. "I guess. Where are the others? Didn't Ginny and Luna have Potions last today?"
"Snape was yelling at someone when I headed up here," Sirius reported with a grin. "I heard the name Creevey being shouted in a truly irritated tone."
Harry and his friends exchanged amused looks.
Sir? Harry said tentatively to Severus. Are you and the girls going to be long?
We're on our way, came the irritable answer.
Should I even ask what Colin did?
No, Severus replied flatly.
Harry chuckled as he broke the connection. "They're on their way."
They waited quietly until the remaining members of the court arrived and then had to quickly swallow their smiles. Severus was stalking along like a dark cloud, something made all the more intimidating due to the red scar running down his face. Ginny and Luna were hurrying after him, looking slightly nervous and a touch exasperated.
Harry wisely didn't ask any questions as he turned and said "Ice Mice" to the gargoyle. The statue leapt to the side and Harry led his court up the revolving stairs and into the office. They found the Headmaster waiting for them behind his desk.
"Ah, Harry. Thank you for coming," the Headmaster said, gesturing for them to take the seats that had been placed in front of the desk. "I was hoping you could tell me what happened to you the other day. Obviously I know what happened to Severus but a few teachers and a number of students were more than a little confused by what happened and I have had some odd questions."
Harry sighed but with the mental encouragement and support of his court he detailed what had happened from his point of view with his court adding their perspectives as well. He left out most of the conversations that had occurred in the Hospital Wing, including the one about Severus' Dark Mark. He didn't want to Headmaster to know he might be that powerful just yet.
Dumbledore considered what he had been told for a moment then left it for now. "I understand the Daemon Sidhe are able to appear now. The arrangements are almost completed. Tomorrow should see them done."
"Thank you," Harry said politely. "Have the other teachers been warned?"
"I intend to do that tonight with the help of Severus, Sirius and Remus," Albus said. "Do you have any objection?"
Harry shook his head. "As long as they don't interfere, I don't care."
"I doubt they will interfere but I daresay they would wish to speak with the Daemon Sidhe at some point," Dumbledore replied.
"I guess that'll be up to the Daemon Sidhe," Harry said firmly. "I won't order them to speak with anyone. It's entirely up to them."
"Quite wise," Dumbledore said without blinking. "Now, do you wish to inform the school as a whole as to what is going on?"
Harry took a deep breath. "Yes, I suppose we might as well. It's going to be very hard to hide it after the Daemon Sidhe become corporeal and I think it might give Professor Snape a bit of protection as well."
"I am hardly in need of protection from anything in this school, Potter," Snape said irritably.
"I wasn't talking about anything in the school, sir," Harry said soberly. "I was talking about Voldemort. He'll undoubtedly hear about what happens." Ron gave a cough that sounded suspiciously like 'Malfoy'. "That may make him lay low for a while. It's worth trying anyway."
"Possibly," Snape said in a disgruntled tone. If it works, it won't last long, he continued silently. He is angry that I betrayed him and will be even angrier that I escaped.
Then I want to have a look at your Mark in Dreamtime tonight, Harry replied. With any luck Gwydion and I can come up with something to get rid of it.
Maybe, Severus said noncommittally. Concentrate on the here and now.
Harry gave the Potions Master a quick grin then turned back to the Headmaster who was watching them with interest.
"Would you like me to make the announcement?" the Headmaster asked.
Harry considered it for a moment then he remembered part of the discussion in the Hospital Wing. "No, I will," he said firmly. "I think I'd better start getting used to leading and this will be a good opportunity."
Dumbledore nodded gravely. "Yes, I suspect so. Perhaps before dinner tonight would be a good opportunity?"
Harry looked nervous then took a deep breath and nodded.
"Very well," Dumbledore said briskly. "I'm afraid there is to be a staff meeting just now. If you could come up to the Head Table just before dinner starts, you can make the announcement then."
Harry nodded and he and the other students rose and left the office.
Harry walked into the Great Hall ten minutes before the normal start of dinner with his friends beside him. He was relieved to find Sirius, Remus and Severus waiting for him in front of the table while the other teachers were sitting and eyeing him with awe and some delight. He steadfastly ignored them as he walked up to the adult members of his court.
"Alright there, Harry," Remus said with a smile.
"Not really," Harry replied. "I'm a little nervous."
Ron snorted with laughter behind them as Hermione, Ginny, Luna and Neville grinned.
"A little nervous," the red haired boy scoffed. "That's like saying Malfoy a little bit of a git."
"The twins are a little bit boisterous," Ginny added.
"Voldemort is a little bit evil," Hermione chimed in.
"Professor Snape is a little bit scary," Neville said with a small grin at the clearly amused Potions Master.
"Crumple-horned Snorkacks are just a little bit elusive," was Luna contribution to the teasing.
Harry rolled his eyes as Sirius and Remus laughed and Severus' eyes gleamed with amusement. "Yes, very funny," he said dryly to his friends. "I hate making a spectacle of myself."
"Don't think of it as making a spectacle of yourself as informing the school of something important but routine," Remus advised. "Don't get upset or fussed. Just be matter-of-fact, blunt even. You're doing this to forestall questions, nothing more. And don't answer any questions. Tell them what you want them to know, nothing else."
"Excellent advice," Dumbledore said as he came up to them. "The students are arriving. Are you ready? We'll begin once they are all here."
Harry nodded and took a deep breath. His court gathered protectively around him as the rest of the students slowly filtered in. Murmuring spread throughout the hall at the unusual sight of Harry and his friends standing in front of the Head Table with the Headmaster. The Headmaster ignored all of this and simply watched the students arrive. He seemed to know once they were all there and he turned to Harry and his friends.
"Here we go," he said quietly as he stepped forward and raised his hands for silence. The murmuring quickly stopped and the students all turned to face their Headmaster.
"Thank you," Dumbledore said soberly. "With the way this school works, I am sure you have all heard about the events surrounding Mr Potter during the last couple of days. Mr Potter has a brief announcement to make regarding this."
The Headmaster stepped back and inclined his head to Harry. The young man stepped forward and his court arrayed themselves around him. Severus took the position just behind and to his left while Remus stood in a similar position on his right and Sirius took his place directly behind. Ron moved to stand beside Severus and Ginny took her position beside Remus. Neville stood behind and between Ron and Severus with Hermione beside him and Luna beside her. He looked over the students and saw many wide eyes and speculative looks at the stern and stony faces of Harry and his court.
"Thank you, Headmaster," he said, relieved that his voice was steady. "I know many of you were startled, curious, perhaps even a little frightened about what happened to me a few days ago and by the reactions of those standing here with me. I apologise for that, it was certainly not my intention to worry anybody. I have no intention of going into a lot of detail tonight because, quite frankly, it is none of your business. What I will tell you is that over the holidays I received some very unique visitors. I hope all of you were paying attention in History of Magic in Third Year, if you were you'll know who I'm talking about. The Daemon Sidhe were my visitors. They have returned and I am their king. With me stands my court. What happened two days ago was an attack on Professor Snape by Voldemort that backlashed to me. My court helped me and helped Professor Snape. That is all you need to know about it. The Daemon Sidhe will be arriving tomorrow and will be training myself and my court. That is all you need to know about that."
His face became grim and he decided that maybe it was time to draw a line in the sand. He drew himself to his full height and everyone in the Hall saw for the first time a true leader standing in front of them. "I will be leading my court and the Daemon Sidhe in the fight against Voldemort. Anyone who wants to join us is more than welcome. Anyone who wishes to oppose us might want to do some research on the Daemon Sidhe and the kings they have served first." His smile was mirthless and ruthless. "Anyone who wishes to remain neutral...good luck to you and I suggest you find a very deep hole to hide in. I won't have the time or resources to protect you so you'd better stay well out of the way. We will answer no more questions about this so do not ask."
With that Harry led his court out of the Great Hall.
My rooms, came Severus curt order as they walked into the Entrance Hall and Harry headed straight for the stairs down to the dungeons. When they got to the bottom, Severus took the lead and no one spoke until they were ensconced in the Potion Master's rooms.
"Well?" Harry asked after they had all sat down.
"Forceful," was Sirius' opinion.
Severus gave the animagus a withering look and summoned a house elf, asking that dinner be served to everyone in here. The little creature bowed and disappeared, reappearing a moment later with four others and several trays. Severus transfigured the low table into something a little larger and the house elves set the meal up there. Once the house elves had left, the Potions Master gestured to the food.
"I suggest we eat first and dissect that interesting speech later." He gave Harry an amused glance. "Now I believe you about the Sorting Hat."
Harry snorted and picked up a plate, serving himself from the dishes on the table. The others followed suit and there was very little conversation as they ate. Once they were all finished the house elves reappeared and cleared away the remains. When they were alone, Harry looked at them expectantly.
"I wasn't expecting what you said," Remus said without prompting.
"You did say to be blunt," Harry said with a small smile.
"Hmm, maybe not quite that blunt," Remus laughed.
"No, that speech worked well," Sirius said with uncharacteristic seriousness. "You don't really want people butting in and that speech will go a fair way towards that aim. You told them what happened. They really don't need to know anymore than what you said and I don't see anything wrong with the way you ended it. It's about time everyone made a decision."
"Severus?" Harry said curiously.
"I approve of everything you said," Snape replied. "You will still get questions from the persistent. I suggest you be brusque with them. You must lead, not get bogged down with explanations." He paused. "The Headmaster rarely offers explanations."
Harry gave a huff of laughter. "I know. I'll bet he'll be asking for a few from me after tonight."
"Then you will have to make a decision whether or not you answer them," Snape said.
Harry looked at Snape curiously and the older man sighed irritably.
"Potter...Harry, you have just claimed your position as the leader in this fight against Voldemort," Snape explained sharply. "You can therefore decide what you do and do not tell the Headmaster. He did not argue with you when you took the lead, did he? He has accepted your leadership."
Harry looked alarmed for a moment then he took a deep breath. "I...you're right. I just hoped to have a bit more time before I did anything like this."
The others looked a little surprised. "You planned to take over?" Ron asked.
Harry nodded slowly. "Devante and I have been talking about it for a while. He pointed out to me that previous kings have never deferred to others. They have always made the fight their own. He said that I would eventually have to do the same or I would inevitably lose because someone else would be making my decisions for me."
Ron nodded slowly as he thought about that.
"Besides this is my fight," Harry continued with a shrug. "He came after me, marked me, killed my parents and keeps trying to kill me. I've got this stupid connection with him and there is the prophecy to consider."
"Well, don't forget it's our fight too," Sirius said soberly.
"How could I?" Harry said humorously then he sobered and made a quick decision. "Severus? May I look at your Dark Mark?" He couched it as a simple request and nothing more.
The room went very quiet as the Potions Master gave Harry a long look then slowly unbuttoned his left sleeve and rolled it back. Harry got up and crouched beside Severus' chair, placing his fingers rather delicately on the hideous Mark. His face became very abstract as he tried to follow the magic involved without disturbing anything. Severus watched him stonily as the others looked concerned.
Mione? Harry's tone was very abstract. Have you ever seen anything like this in your studies? It looks vaguely familiar.
A quick glance showed the bushy-haired girl that the comment had been directed solely at her then she turned her concentration to the odd rune Harry was showing her in her mind. She frowned for a moment then it came to her.
It's a protection rune and a rather powerful one, she said, quirking her lips at Harry's absent shortening of her name.
Thanks, Mione, was Harry's absent reply.
After about half an hour, Harry came back to himself. He gingerly pushed himself to his feet then gave his head a small shake. He drew in a deep breath and sat down again.
"Well?" was Severus tense question.
"That's...really nasty," Harry said shaking his head.
"What do you mean?" Severus snapped.
Harry gave him a solemn look, aware that the man's bad temper was more due to his shame at having made such a monumental mistake in swearing allegiance to Voldemort in the first place then any true anger.
"I think I'll be able to remove it but it's not going to be easy," he said. "I'll have to speak to Gwydion. It's more than just an ugly mark on your arm used for summoning you. There's a lot of magic in it."
Severus looked surprised. "What precisely? I have attempted to examine it but...there is pain when I try. Also when the Headmaster tried. How did you avoid that?"
Harry grimaced. "I recognised the magic so I was able to...sidle past the protection spells. Between this bloody scar and everything Voldemort's done to me over the years, I know his magic, at least a little. You and the Headmaster probably tripped the initial protection spells; they cause pain. Anyway the Mark isn't just isolated on your arm. There are a whole lot of tendrils of magic branching off from it into the rest of you. One lot surrounds your heart and brain and they're going to be the tricky ones to deal with. Basically Voldemort, if he wanted to expend the energy, could crush your heart or brain whenever he wanted."
The Potions Master paled as the others looked horrified.
"He's...not likely to do that now, is he?" Hermione asked, her hand in front of her mouth.
"I wouldn't think so," Harry said decisively. "He would want to punish Severus first but it does mean I want to get that damn thing off as soon as possible. It's definitely become the number one priority."
Severus looked stony and one hand clenched into a fist. "What else does it do?" he said through gritted teeth. He looked furious but the others could sense through the bond that the anger was mostly directed at Voldemort and himself.
"Some of the tendrils are wrapped around your magical core," Harry continued. "I couldn't quite work out what they were doing. They're either providing Voldemort with a way to leech your magic or they're blocking your access to your magic. Possibly both." Severus looked positively murderous at this and Harry hurried onwards. He paused for a moment and blushed. "Er, the...well, nevermind. Erm, the Mark is also saturated with spells designed to encourage obedience and subservience."
Severus eyes narrowed and he aimed a private, suspicious question at Harry. What did you leave out?
As the others watched curiously, Harry blushed. Erm, there's a group of tendrils that go...er, well, I, er, gather you've...um, been...er, celibate for a while.
Severus glared for a moment then his lips thinned and a faint red stain appeared on his cheeks. I see, was all he could manage.
Harry cleared his throat nervously. "Anyway," he said a little lamely. "I'll speak with Gwydion either tonight in Dreamtime or tomorrow when they become corporeal. I think we ought to get this done in the next couple of days before Voldemort gets over the fright I gave him and gets really angry."
"Very well," Severus said flatly as the others watched warily.
"Well, I think maybe you lot better get back to your dorms," Remus said briskly. "I know for a fact you've got homework."
The students groaned and slowly got to their feet, Sirius and Remus joining them. They bid the Potions Master goodnight and headed off their dorms.