The Issue of Mine Enemy

BY : PerfesserN
Category: Harry Potter > Het - Male/Female
Dragon prints: 38181
Disclaimer: Okay, okay. I'm NOT JK Rowlings, I do not own Harry Potter. I make no money from writing these stories, I do it because it's fun and other people seem to enjoy what I write - the best of whom write review and tell me when I get it right and







Chapter 36 – The Battle of Hogwarts



 



Harry looked around and
locked eyes with his bushy haired best friend.



 



Hermione meant to say “Hi
Harry, how are you?  How did you make a baby so fast and how is it that you’re
an auror officer and how is it that you’re married to two women and a ghost?”



 



What actually came out was
something that sounded like “urk?”



 



Not exactly how he’d planned
to introduce his family to the ‘old school chums.’



 



Harry stepped toward Hermione
and she took a step back simultaneously raising both hands in front of her as
if to push him away if he got too close.



 



“Hermione,” he said gently,
“can I tell you about my summer?”



 



She looked over Harry’s
shoulder at the three worried looking ladies and her gaze hardened, “yeah
Harry, let’s write an essay, at least three feet of parchment, what I did over
my summer holiday.”



 



She counted off on her fingers
one “You managed to have a baby, which means if he was born in July you had intimate
relations with this lady in October of last year, funny, you never
mentioned her.  Come to think of it, we didn’t see much of you last October.”



 



Holding up a second finger she
continued “you managed to get a commission in less than the standard 14 weeks,
which means either a time-turner was involved or your commission is fraudulent!”



 



She folded back her third
finger until it looked painful and raised her voice “and now you say you’re
married to not one but three women, one of whom has been dead for fifty years! 
Eeeeew!”



 



Harry could take abuse, it
rolled off him like water off a duck’s back, but no one was allowed to debase
his ladies, not even her.



 



Silencio!”



 



Harry’s eyes flashed a
dangerous green, “of all people, I thought you knew me best.  Of all people I
thought you would understand.”



 



He ticked off his own list,
“One, Paul is our son, our adopted son and we love him none the less for
it.”



 



“Two, my commission is
genuine, there is a Commandant and a Brigadier here who will attest to that and
you should know deputy that it is a crime, punishable by up to a year in
Azkaban to impersonate an officer in the auror corps.”



 



“Third and fourth and fifth
and last these three ladies, one of whom carries my unborn daughter love
me and I love them, and they would not have me choose between them so they all
married me, and they know that there is a place in our family for one more, for
the girl who has had my heart these past six years and has stood by me in bad
times and worse and who seems to be determined to piss away that friendship
because she didn’t think before insulting my wives, and my son and my
life on the eve of what will probably be my last day on this Earth!”



 



Hermione gaped, open-mouthed
and wide eyed as she saw tears filling Harry’s eyes.  She tried to speak but
the silencing charm was still in place.  He blinked and tears flowed freely
down his cheeks.  He whispered “finite” and turned away sadly into the
arms of his loves.  Myrtle glared at her and turned her back on the bushy
haired know it all. 



 



Hermione ran sobbing out of
the hospital wing.



 



Belle conjured a handkerchief
and handed it to Harry, who blew his nose and sighed, “Well, that could have
gone better . . .”



 



“My Lord Husband, will you
come to bed?”



 



“I’d love to Milady Wife, but
I’m afraid I would only disappoint tonight; much too much on my mind.”



 



“Just a bit of rest, then?”



 



“I’ll rest, one way or
another, after tomorrow.”



 



“Then we’ll rest together
milord, for I know you will win!”



 



Harry took heart as Belle was
so convinced, for her it was truly a foregone conclusion.  He slipped into
‘command mode’ “Lieutenant Potter, do we have an illusionist for the Burrow?”



 



“I’m afraid not Commander
Potter, it was going to be Hermione but now . . .”



 



Harry nodded, “well, ‘good
enough’ will have to be good enough, let’s go back to Ottery St. Catchpole.”



 



Myrtle said, “I’ll stay here
and coordinate with the castle spirits, dears, do be careful” saying this she
brushed her warm ectoplasmic cheek against his, and then touched foreheads with
Belle, Marie and little Paul.



 



Marietta hefted a rough canvas
sack, and with a flick of her wand shrunk it to pocket size.



 



 ‘Something about that bag
looks familiar’ Belle thought to herself; then asked out loud “What is that
Marie?”



 



“Just a little surprise for
your nephew if I happen to see him Belle” she said sweetly “a little gift
courtesy of Auror Rolfe.”



 



As Belle and Harry and Marie
went in search of a floo connection Myrtle went in search of a Granger.



________ooo000ooo__________



 



One hour before sunrise the
silver cage that contained the trapped lycanthropes fell open.  The top of the
cage swung inward and the walls of the cage fell outward.  The werewolves slept
on.  Goyle crab-walked backwards away from the pile of lycans as Cruz, Morris
and Smythe magically bound the sleeping beasts.



 



“No muss no fuss no botha,”
Morris said, “we missed all the fun!”



 



Cruz wasn’t so sure; he’d seen
the biggest werewolf twitch when he was bound. So he kept his rifle at the
ready.



 



Keeping her wand trained on
Goyle she called out “Oi, step lively now, over to the wall hands over your
head.”



 



She stepped over the prone
form of Fenrir Greyback who sprang to life, broke his magical bonds and raked
her back with his claws.  The auror screamed and fell, dropping her wand in the
process.  The werewolf was too quick for José, who couldn’t risk a shot for
fear of hitting Tina.



 



Goyle couldn’t believe his
luck, he snatched the wand at his feet and pointed it at the larger of the two
aurors, but the big man drop-rolled and fired a cutting curse that neatly holed
the center of the death eater’s chest.



 



Greyback rose from the downed
auror and howled his defiance to the one who was just getting to his feet.  The
outsized lycan crouched to spring.



 



José didn’t even raise the
rife to aim, he just fired from the hip, putting a silver round lengthwise through
the mad were’s body.  As the crack of the weapon echoed through the sewers he
smoothly worked the bolt and chambered another Ag round.  With a grim
expression he raised the rifle and put a second bullet in Fenrir Greyback’s
skull.  Cruz shouldered the firearm then ran to his fallen comrade.



 



Smythe was working on the
wounds, trying to close them and stop the bleeding, but lycanthrope gashes were
devilishly hard to mend.



 



“That’s a right cock-up” Tina
Morris groaned “turned me back on im’ I did!”



 



“Its all right, mi querida,
you couldn’t have known.”



 



“I could’ve and should’ve.  I
assumed, damnit!” she hissed as the infected scratches stung her back,
“and you know what that means!”



 



“I know,” he said gently,
“makes an ass out of you and me.”



 



“Oh José,” she sighed, “just
let me die, or better yet, put a bullet in my brainpan.”



 



“No, we’ll get through this,
you and me!”



 



She wanted so much to believe
him, but knew their life together was over before it had truly begun.



 



“Smythe, I’ll take over here,
make sure the others are really asleep and double the bindings, all right?”



 



Smythe nodded and tended to
the prisoners.



 



_______­­__ooo000ooo_________



 



Hermione ran blindly down the
corridor and into a girl’s bathroom where she locked herself in a cubicle, sat
on the only seat available and began to wail in earnest.  Goddamn overactive
teenage hormones, was Harry letting his todger do all his thinking for
him?  She felt as though her life was over.  Harry, her Harry was
married.  Her monogamous upbringing didn’t allow her to wrap her brain around
the concept of polygamy or polyamory for that matter.  When she allowed her
logical self to look at the real reason for her anguish it was simple.  She was
the plain-brain.  The ‘bushy haired know-it-all’ and that’s all she would or
could ever be to Harry.  And then there were the other ‘wives;’ one drop-dead
gorgeous redhead and one auror whose athletic beauty could easily grace the
cover of the Sport’s Illustrated Swimsuit edition.  How could she hope to
compete with that?  Myrtle, on the other hand, was a complete and utter
mystery. 



 



So in fits and starts Hermione
spent the better part of two hours being bewildered and heartbroken, crying
like she had that day six years before when Ronald had called her a nightmare. 
As she remembered this she thought of how precious little Harry had jumped on a
mountain troll’s back to protect her and how she had fallen completely in love
with him at that moment and she howled in grief, mourning for the love that was
now beyond her grasp.



 



“Somehow, ‘Howling Hermione’
doesn’t have the same ring to it.”



 



Hermione looked up and saw
Myrtle’s face phased through the cubicle door.



 



“Shut it, you!  Just leave me
alone!”



 



“Well there’s the problem then
innit?  You barge into the one room that has been my home for the past fifty
years then tell me to get out?”



 



The corporeal girl stood in a
huff and said “fine, I’ll leave you to it then.”



 



Myrtle did something that she
hadn’t done in fifty years as a ghost, she pushed a corporeal being, causing
Hermione to sit down, shocked.



 



Before she could ask ‘how’ the
ghost girl shrugged and said, “I got a little coaching from Peeves.”



 



“Brightest witch of her age,
huh?  Tell me, Hermione Granger, what’s come over you in the past year or so?  You
used to be so good at reading Harry and now you can’t tell anymore when he’s
hurting, when he needs you, when he needs his best friend?  You were so good
together, real friends and then everything went to shite last year, why?  What
did Harry do that was so awful that you stopped being, well, his
Hermione?”



 



In a very small voice she said
“he stopped needing me . . .”



 



“Oh Great Goddess of All give
me strength!  What made you think that?”



 



“I’m not pretty, I’m not
athletic; I’m ‘the brainy one,’ all right?  All of a sudden he’s popular,
captain of the Quidditch team.  Girls are falling all over him and he doesn’t
see me anymore.  He’s Slughorn’s favorite little ‘potion’s master’ because of
that damn book . . .”



 



“He offered to share that with
you; couldn’t you see that his potions were better because he dared to be
different?  It could’ve just as easily blown up in his face, but he was willing
to take a chance.”



 



“Then Ginny is all over him
like a cheap robe . . .”



 



Myrtle’s eyes grew wide and
her mouth hung open in utter disbelief.  Jealousy; she was plainly and simply
jealous.  She was envious of his athletic prowess, resentful that he had
out-performed her in potions and green-eyed because he was finding love and she
wasn’t.



 



“Its not very becoming, y’know”
Myrtle offered.



 



“What do you know?”



 



“Love is patient and kind;
love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude.”



 



Hermione’s Church of England
upbringing kicked in “Paul to the Corinthians . . .”



 



“Paul could have easily been
describing our Harry, he isn’t jealous or arrogant and he is very patient and
kind, he’s so easy to love.”



 



Hermione looked up at the
ghost and realized that Moaning Myrtle was feeling sorry for her.  “What
do you know?”  She repeated, this time sans sarcasm.



 



“I know I had to die before
love found me, I know I will do whatever I can to help him.  I’m trying to help
him now.  He needs you.”



 



“He’ll find himself an
illusionist . . .”



 



“No, not as good as you, and
‘good enough’ won’t be good enough, but that’s not what I’m talking about, he
needs you.”



 



“What do you mean?”



 



“When we’re, y’know, ‘with
him,’ he invites me in – we call it ‘visiting.’  I get to share his thoughts,
and you know that ‘little voice’ we all hear in our heads, our conscience?”



 



Hermione nodded her understanding.



 



“That little voice is you. 
Don’t you know he’s loved you for over five years?”



 



Her tear puffed eyes grew
wide, “oh God!”



 



Myrtle nodded, seeing the
understanding in the other girls face.



 



“Right now he feels your
disapproval washing over him and it’s tearing at him, in his mind if you think
he’s wrong then he can’t be right, and in this frame of mind he’s about to face
Voldemort.  You may have just done more to defeat my husband than all
the death eaters under Riddle combined.”



 



“Oh God, no!”



 



Hermione burst out of the
stall and ran back to the hospital wing, crying “oh God oh God oh God!” all the
way down the hall and up the stairs.  She skidded to a halt before running into
Madame Pomfrey, who was cradling baby Paul; little baby Paul Potter, whom Harry
loved.



 



“Where are they?” she asked,
out of breath.



 



Myrtle floated up from the
floor, “they’re at the Burrow; take the hospital floo, hurry.”



 



Hermione literally fell out of
the fireplace in the Weasley’s home, knocking over somebody who had arrived a
few seconds before.



 



“We have got to stop
meeting like this” said a slightly annoyed Marietta Edgecombe Potter.



 



Hermione broke down sobbing
and wailed “I’m so sorry, oh God I’m so sorry!”



 



Marietta held her close and
said, “s’okay, nothing’s broken – see?”



 



“No I’m sorry for the awful
things I said to you, all of you and I’m sorry I wasn’t there for Harry all
last year and I’ve been a right bitch about everything!”



 



She felt herself being lifted
up by strong arms and pulled into a gentle embrace and wailed into Harry’s
chest.



 



“It’s alright love, it’s all
right now.”



 



Living with three ladies had
given Harry the experience to handle a crying female, he knew to cuddle and
caress and that little rocking thing and to say “it’s all right, it’s all right
love, you’re here and that’s all that matters.”



 



After a while she realized
what a sight she must be, her hair even more frazzled than usual, her eyes
blotchy, her nose red and runny, marks on her cheeks where she had scratched
them in her anguish.  She stepped back and was shocked to see him looking at
her as though she was the most beautiful thing he had ever seen.



 



“We told him you’d figure it
out” Marietta smirked.



 



“She had to,” added Belle,
“brightest witch of her age, after all.”



 



Hermione composed herself as
best she could “Deputy Granger reporting for illusion duty, sir!”



 



“Glad to have you aboard,
deputy” he said with a broad smile.  Then he went into his ‘command mode.’



 



“The plan is to set up golems
and illusions around the Burrow, to make it look like there’s a wedding
celebration going on.  We know Moldishort’s will be arriving about mid morning
with some goblins to drop the defensive wards and a few DEs to create mayhem,
we plan to let them.  Then my troops will take out the death eaters and any dark
creatures with them and I’ll face his snakeyness, don’t give me that look, you
know the prophecy.  Only I can do it, anyone else who tries, dies.”



 



Hermione looked at the golems,
which met with her approval, then pulled her wand and drilled a hole in one
with a cutting curse.  The golem stood there blinking.



 



“We have to spell them to
react to curses, and we need to hollow them out and fill them with something
that will pass for blood, otherwise the death eaters will know they’re not real
in the first ten seconds.”



 



Belle nodded in satisfaction
“can you . . .”



 



Hermione raised one eyebrow
and smirked.



 



“. . . of course you can, let’s
get started then, we can all help.”



 



They got down to it, Harry
getting his camouflaged aurors in place, Hermione and the Misuses’ Potters
prepping the golems.  When they were done the two dozen simulacrums looked and
sounded very life-like. 



 



The fireplace burned a
brilliant green and Lieutenant’s Smythe and Cruz stepped out.  Both were very subdued. 
Marietta noticed and asked “what is it?”



 



Smythe took a deep breath,
then answered, “we got the werewolves under St. Mungo’s, all of em,’ but Auror
Morris got . . .”



 



Harry knew he’d have to face
casualties under his command, he just didn’t expect it so soon.  “What
happened?”



 



“Greyback happened, sir, the
big wolf clawed her before I got him.”



 



“It must have been bad, you
were right there at the hospital” Marietta said sympathetically, “I know you
tried everything you could; you just couldn’t get her help in time.”



 



“In time for what?  She said
she didn’t want to live, she wanted me to shoot her on the spot!” Cruz grieved.



 



“You didn’t . . .”



 



“Of course I didn’t, but she’s
convinced her life, our life, is over now that she’s infected!”



 



Harry snapped his head in José’s
direction “she’s alive?”



 



“Yes sir, alive but infected
with the lycan virus.”



 



Harry threw a pinch of floo
powder into the fireplace and called “Auror Tonks!”



 



Tonks’ head appeared in the
fireplace “Yes Commander?”



 



“How’s Remus?”



 



“He’s good sir, thank you for
asking.”  Then she seemed to ponder for a moment, “um, Commander, why are you
asking?”



 



“Auror Morris was attacked by
Greyback this morning, she’s been infected and I was hoping maybe he could talk
to her?”



 



Tonks understood immediately
“I’ll send him over as soon as he wakes up, the wolf’s bane makes him a little
groggy.”



 



“Thanks Tonks; how are things
downtown?”



 



“Ministry’s all set, your
friend Granger really came through for us, without her we wouldn’t have been
able to have this little chat, she’s kept the floo network open for us.”



 



“That’s my Mione” he chuckled,
the deputy in question blushed at his praise.



 



He broke the connection and
turned to Cruz “Auror Tonks is in a serious relationship with Remus Lupin, who
just happens to be one of my family’s oldest friends and a werewolf. 
When we’re done here you are to find Auror Morris and convince her that you do
have a life together.  Consider that an order, Lieutenant Cruz.”



 



José snapped to attention and
saluted, “aye sir!”



 



The golems were set in motion,
music came from the wizard’s wireless and a pre-wedding atmosphere descended on
the burrow.



 



_________ooo000ooo___________



 



Karen Ramsey had been cleaning
out the offices of the powerful and important wizards for three decades, she
was a squib but her work record was impeccable.  She was the next best thing to
a house elf, very conscientious and meticulous in her duties, and she didn’t
mind being one of the ‘invisibles,’ one of the menials that no one noticed
unless there was a mess left somewhere.  She put her cleaning supplies away,
then, taking a little nip from her hip flask headed for the lift that would put
her out by way of the old telephone booth. 



She warily shuffled behind the
dumpster where she met the wide open, sightless eyes of Karen Ramsey.  She
chucked as she remembered meeting ‘herself’ as she wandered into work in the
wee hours of the morning.  A quick AK and the body was dragged to its current
resting place.  Carraticus Crabbe then took the middle aged squib’s
identification badge and shuffled to the phone booth to go to work.  Imagine
his delight when he found he had access to every main office on every floor. 
He went from room to room, placing the fire runes where they would do the most
good.  There was nothing Crabbe liked better than a good fire, the heat, the
smoke, the smell of burning flesh, he reveled in it.  The only thing better was
a good AK; he loved the look of utter surprise as his victims were snuffed out
like candles.  Two simple words and he was death itself.  He loved his job.



 



“Ya done good darlin’” the
polyjuiced death eater said to his unappreciative audience of one, then sat
down to wait for the polyjuice potion to wear off and to pick off the panicking
ministry employees as they ran from the emergency exits.



 



_____________ooo000ooo_______________



 



Deep in the forbidden forest
three giants played football with all that remained of Gawp.



 



“No football, heed-ball” one
of the giants grunted out and laughed as he kicked the battered skull yet again
in the direction of the two other giants. 



 



A team of goblin mercenaries
had created a ‘ward tunnel’ by finding a weak spot in the wards near the
forbidden forest and worrying it until it opened enough to let the Dark Lord’s
forces through.  When the various creatures and humans were through the wards
the goblins prepared to leave.



 



Antonin Dolohov, Voldemort’s
on-site commander asked “vhat, not stayink?  I sought you vas mercs?”



 



“We were paid to open the
wards; we opened the wards, now we will leave.”



 



“If you stay and fight you can
haff vhatever you vant from dis castle” the death eater offered.



 



“Pig in a poke” the
spokes-goblin rejoined, “you are not in the castle yet, nor do I think you will
be.  This castle has never been taken by force.”



 



The goblins walked into the
forest to Dolohov’s chorus of “off wiz you zhen, who needs you?”



 



Three hundred inferi ambled
aimlessly within a corral.  Their movements were being controlled by Phaedra, the
Dark Lord’s own necromancer, an albino witch with white hair and pink eyes who
had been bound to the dead from the moment of her birth and had extraordinary
control over lifeless corpses.  She became, in fact their will.  She didn’t
particularly like the job, but it was what she was.  What she cared about most
was getting Selene, her seven year old white haired daughter away from the Dark
Lord as soon as possible so that they could go back to their life of well
planned obscurity.  She felt pity for the victims-to-be but she knew better
than most that every living thing dies so she could afford to be philosophical
about it.



 



Nearby a small squadron of
dementors hovered just below the tree line, within the wards that kept their
soul sucking proclivities away from the rest of Voldemort’s troops.  The DEs
kept one wary eye on them and the other on the giants. 



 



The first mob was made up
almost entirely of newly marked grey robes, being admonished by Jack Rolfe. 



 



“We have the honor and
privilege of being the point of the spear, we will be the first to the walls of
Hogwarts and then what we do will go down in history, every man here . . .”



 



“And woman!” came a shrill
voice in the crowd.



 



“. . .and woman will do what
they have ta do or die in the trying, right mates?”



 



The cheer that went up from
the three dozen death eater novices made the more jaded members of the Dark
Lord’s corps chuckle.  Let the cannon fodder cheer, their job was to draw fire
from the castle defenders so that the experienced troops could target the
defenses.  If any of them actually survived their grey robes would be exchanged
for black, they already had the dark mark on them; they just needed to be
blooded to complete the ritual.  Dolohov thought ‘Pity about zat Jack Rolfe, he
vas all right, a real leader who had managed to pull conscripts into a cohesive
unit.  Maybe zhey could pull him out just before ze charge?’



 



Among the grey-robes was
Voldemort’s mole, a polyjuiced Severus  Snape.



 



____________ooo000ooo_____________



 



Crabbe looked at the
wristwatch on Karen’s lifeless arm, half past eight, right about now the runes
would be bursting into flame all over the ministry, in a few seconds the people
would be pouring out of the emergency exits. . . there!  He gleefully began
casting from the cover of the dumpster “Avada Kedavra!  Avada Kedavra!  Avada
Kedavra!”  Into the crowd.  It was hard to tell at first if he was having any
effect as the people seemed to stumble over each other in their haste.  Not
that it mattered; he was having the time of his life!  Then something slammed
the dumpster against him, smearing him along the brick wall, and he knew no
more.



 



As the fiery runes erupted
into impotent flames within the building the golems and illusions began running
out of the emergency exits.  To a muggle on the street it would look as though
a crowd was leaving the underground, except there was no station near this
location.



 



Commander Donovan, Sergeant
Major Moody and their spotters saw AKs being launched from four different
locations, Donovan sighted in on the one behind the dumpster and his fellow
marksmen lined up on theirs.  At his command “now!” they all fired deadly
spells.  No sense wasting time and ministry resources on lengthy trials here;
just finish the job and move on.  Alistor’s target had been blasted into the
ground by a powerful reductor, he looked more like a stepped on bug than an
assassin, which pretty much summed up Moody’s opinion of the cowardly scum.



 



___________ooo000ooo______________



 



At Hogwarts the dementors
glided over the trees and across the lawn, the ensuing drop in temperature,
misty fog and smell of death would have everyone in the castle scrambling
around in blind panic.  Except they weren’t, instead half a dozen patroni of
different sizes and forms flew out to drive the dementors into a space just
above a turreted tower.  Five powerful ultra-violet spotlights came on, bathing
the dementors in excruciating light.  When any one dementor tried to flee the
six patroni would gang up on it and force it back into the lights.  The sound
of an unholy terror screaming in unholy terror was oddly satisfying, even more
so was the fact that the dementor borne fog was dissipating; allowing the
morning sun to add to their woes.  Thirty seconds of this treatment proved to
be thirty seconds too long and each of the dark creatures burst into flames.



 



“Keep the lights on em!”
Brigadier admonished “there can’t be any part of them left or they’ll
regenerate!”



 



Two more patroni joined the
group, a Jack Russell terrier belonging to Ron Weasley and an enormous
stallion.



 



“Good one, Neville!”



 



“Thanks Ron; just needed a
happy thought is all!”



 



“And what was that?” Ron asked



 



Neville grinned broadly, “A
gentleman never tells, all right?  You’ll figure it out later, b’sides, we’re
kinda busy here!”



 



Yet another patronus joined
the group, effectively fencing in the now screeching dementors, this one
looking like a large platypus with a crenellated horn protruding from its brow.



 



“What in the nine hells is that?”
a bewildered Ron asked.



 



“Crumple-horned snorkack” Luna
answered smugly.



 



Jack Rolfe saw that the
defenders were busy containing the dementors and shouted “Let’s go!”



 



The three dozen cheering death
eater novices ran abreast to the long castle wall, appeared to jump and then
disappeared.  Just like that, gone.  No one had fired a single curse on either
side, and it looked like the Earth just swallowed them up.  What the other
death eaters didn’t see was the concealed trench that had been prepared for
‘Jack’s Platoon’ as Harry had called it.  They also didn’t see the grey robed
novices empty their pockets of small runes, anti-portkey charms that would not
allow anyone to use magical means of transport in order to desert. 



 



“Send in the giants!”



 



The giant’s handlers screamed
“Food!”  Then pointed to the castle, “there food!”



 



The giants lifted their clubs
and began the ambling walk that could eat up distance in no time.  As the
giants cleared the trees a half dozen Auror troops popped the covers off olive-drab
fiberglass cylinders, each auror marked his or her target with a cry of “left”
or “middle or “right!”  They then telescoped the tubes to their full length,
shouldered, aimed and fired the light anti-tank weapons (LAWs) into each
giant’s center of mass.  Two rockets hit each giant squarely in the chest then
exploded.  All three giants crumpled like gargantuan puppets with their strings
cut.



 



“Inferi!” Dolohov screamed “release
the inferi, follow zhem into castle!”



 



Phaedra’s walking dead began
to amble across the lawn, they would form ladders with their own bodies
allowing the others to climb up and over the castle walls, there would be more
death and more inferi made today.  The remaining death eaters moved in behind
the soulless automatons using them as shields as they began to fire at the
castle defenders.



 



No one returned fire; instead
the ghosts appeared on the parapets.  They may have looked very faint in the
morning sunlight; but their voices sounded strong and, well, alive!



 



“For Queen and Country!”



 



“For our land and our home!”



 



“For Hogwart’s!”



 



“For Harry!”



 



With that they fell into the
inferi, which stopped, then turned around to grab the nearest death eaters who
screamed as their limbs were methodically, mercilessly torn from their bodies. 
The death eater’s who were farther back began to fire AKs into the inferi, but
being already dead the Avada Kedavras had no effect.  One DE got lucky with a
severing charm and decapitated one of the murderously efficient corpses, which
fell, grizzly head rolling from decomposing body, and was still.



 



“The heads, the heads!  Cut
off the heads!” one of the panicky death nibblers screamed.



 



The cutting curses were flying
so erratically that some of the death eaters were cut down by their own
comrades.



 



As she hovered over the far
end of the inferi formation on her broom Phaedra was confused, “what is
controlling them, if not me?”



 



“Maw – ma . . .” a small voice
said near her feet. “Maw . . . ma . . .ma” it kept repeating.



 



She looked down in absolute
horror at her own little Selene, a tiny caricature of a zombie, both piteous
and horrifying.



 



The necromancer howled
“Noooooooooooo!” over and over again in utter grief and rage.



 



She turned her pink eyes to
the newly fallen death eaters and to the giants and spoke the words that would
animate them.  Then she pointed at the death eaters who were desperately
slashing at the rest of her army and screamed “Kill them!  Kill them all!”



 



The newly dead, including the
giants surrounded the dwindling mass of death eaters who found they could
neither portkey nor apparate away, being prevented by the runes in the blood
stained grass.



 



When the last death eater had
died (by his own hand rather than be torn apart by inferi) Phaedra settled on
the ground next to her dead but animated daughter.  She barked a single
syllable incantation and all the dead, even her little Selene, fell to the
ground and moved no more.   



 



The spirit of the Grey Lady,
Rowena Ravenclaw herself appeared and asked “Phaedra, the Dark has taken much
from you, why do you serve?”



 



“I had no choice, milady, they
had my little moon child, they had Selene, and they took her . . .”



 



“What will you do now?”



 



“I am a necromancer, I will
take my daughter and we will go.  Someplace warm I think.  Haiti, yes, we will go to Haiti . . .”



 



Phaedra gathered her small
daughter’s body into her arms, mounted her broom and flew west.



 



Back on the battlements the
defenders looked at each other, ‘was that it?’  They didn’t know whether to
laugh or to cry or to cheer, but they did know that it wasn’t over yet. 
Voldemort was still out there. And their Commander had to face him.








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