Leave A Tender Moment Alone

BY : Spurge_Laurel
Category: Harry Potter > Het - Male/Female
Dragon prints: 1208
Disclaimer: I don't own Harry Potter and I make no money from this hobby.

“Harry Potter,” a sibilant voiced hissed out, the poorly contained malice and hatred dripping from it reverberating within Harry’s ears. “Come to die.”

 

The young man tried not to flinch as a smooth, cold hand caressed his cheek, the wand pressing firmly under his chin belying the gentleness behind the gesture. Cold tendrils of fear grasped his heart, making him quiver in his boots as his green eyes met the red of the monster before him.

 

“I killed you. You’re dead.”

 

A raspy hiss. It took Harry a second to realize that the sound coming from his hated rival was meant to be laughter, “Did you really think that little light show was enough to stop me? Me, who has gone further than any wizard in the past, who has conquered death itself?”

 

“Your horcruxes—”

 

“Nothing more than little trinkets created in the folly of youth. I’ve found much better ways of staving off death since I was sixteen. Some of them you may have even heard of. Tanislav’s Last Will ring any bells?”

 

 Those words chilled him to the bone. “No,” he whispered, “You wouldn’t. Not even you.”

 

That same hiss from before. “Why, Harry,” the monster whispered back, “haven’t you looked at the decorations?”

 

And then Harry’s field of view expanded. He was back in the Forbidden Forest, in a clearing. And hanging from every branch of every tree was the body of someone he knew. Hagrid’s huge frame bent the branches low so his feet nearly touched the ground, the branches around him being decorated with the desecrated corpses of the other professors. Minerva, Fillius, Neville, Charity, Septima, none were left out.

 

The trees to either side were covered in the small bodies of students, still in their Hogwarts robes. They were a faceless mass, mostly unknown to Harry, but he recognized some as children who had run up to him to shake his hand in the Alley. Their parents would look on in mixed pride and shame, but he was always quick to reassure them that it was no bother. He had always liked kids, and now they were dead.

 

Elsewhere hanged the men and women of the Auror force. Trusted coworkers and teammates who supported him in his endeavours to keep their world safe, not leaving it all to him. Mixed in with the red robes were the plum ones of the Wizengamot. The allies that Harry had made in that esteemed body in effort to push through legislation were not spared the grisly fate.

 

His friends were hanging nearby. Good ones like Neville and Luna, who stuck with him through hard times and told him when he was being an idiotic. Bad ones, like the ferret Draco Malfoy and foolish Zacharias Smith who took some time to come into their own but were always good for a laugh.

 

A different tree was painted red through the use of the Weasley family. The first group to really show him acceptance and love were carefully arrayed in a circle around the main attraction: Ron and Hermione. Their corpses holding hands, together even in death, stared down at him with their blank eyes.

 

But directly behind Voldemort on a tree all by herself, his wife was hanging from a noose. Her fingers scrambled at her throat, trying desperately to release the knot or even just to rip through the rope, but it was all in vain. Harry’s eyes met hers, and the weight of emotion he saw within struck him like a blow. Terror and despair flooded his mind through their connection, but most of all he felt her anger. Her anger at him. If not for him, she wouldn’t have been there. And now Harry was just standing there, not doing anything.

 

“I told you, Potter! I told you I would be back! And that I would kill everyone you care about! All the suffering you have inflicted upon me I will return a hundred fold! You will never be rid of me! NEVER!”

 

The crazed Dark Lord turned, a green burst of magic flying from his wand without an incantation heading straight towards Daphne. It struck her the chest and she went still, her hands dropping to her sides as her struggles seized. Her beautiful blue eyes lost their luster as they glazed over in death, her head tipping over as it’s weight was no longer supported.

 


 

Harry shot up in a cold sweat, breathing hard as hands clenched and unclenched due to adrenaline. A soft touch on his back sent him bolting off the bed, scrambling for his glasses and wand. A low groan stilled him. He knew that voice. He knew where he was. He was okay.

 

Another groan and the sound of shifting sheets made him turn back to the bed. Daphne’s arms were reaching out, searching for the heat source that went missing, her face scrunched up in discontent. A gentle smile came to Harry’s face and he leaned over to brush a strand of hair away from his wife’s face, giving her a kiss on the forehead. As he pulled back, one of her hands grabbed his in a tight hold, not letting go.

 

The cord that had been wound tight within him relaxed and Harry climbed back into bed, wrapping Daphne up in a hug as she in turn clung to him, resting her head on his chest. With his warmth returned, she settled down and her face relaxed back to its neutral state.

 

It was such a strange feeling, to have such a perfect and delicate creature nestled in his arms. If someone had told him as a child—Ickle Harry still living out of a cupboard—that one day he would be married to a beautiful and intelligent woman who would support him in ways no one else even realized he needed without asking for anything in return. . . well, he would have smiled at them because that’s all he would ever do when he was young. But the smile would definitely not have reached his eyes.

 

He took some time to simply study his wife’s face, having long since committed every detail to memory but being too high strung to return to the realm of Morpheus just yet. Riddle—no, Voldemort, could always do that to him. Even now, years after his final death. That thing he faced with the British Wizarding public as an audience was so far removed from human, it could no longer be considered as Tom Riddle, no matter what the Headmaster would say.

 

Harry would know. He’d spent what was probably too much time in the monsters head, and even more in conversation with the various forms of his prophesied foe. Despite being mortal enemies, they weren’t that different and understood each other in ways no one else could. The idea that he could become like the Dark Lord sparked more fear within Harry than any consideration that he might have somehow survived the destruction of his Horcruxes.

 

But it was a fear with no weight, for Harry Potter had a power Tom Riddle had never found. Love. With one final yawn, the green eyed wizard rolled onto his side, still clutching his wife tightly to his chest and let the lure of sleep pull him under once more.



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