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Old November 28th, 2012, 9:57 pm
jmunay10  Male.gif jmunay10 is offline
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Join Date: 01st September 2012
Posts: 59
Re: Harry Potter and the Hellfire Potion

Chapter 27 ~ Smokius, Chokius

A large tawny owl swooped through the woods as dusk stole over Little Hangleton. It landed on the window ledge of the Gaunt house and tapped its beak on the filthy window. Roused from her sleep, Bellatrix Lestrange swept her matted black hair from her face and listened intently. Tap, tap, tap – what was that? She stood, silently making her way to the source of the noise, releasing an inaudible sigh of relief when she realised it was only an owl. Inching the window open, she removed the letter, keeping her eyes alert and trained on the darkening woods surrounding the house. Once the letter was in her grasp, she slammed the window shut, causing the owl to hoot indignantly before it took off into the gathering gloom.

Tapping the parchment with her wand, her eyes scanned the letter, an irritated look spreading across her face. The letter was from Wormtail:

Bella,

I have found what we need most. However, I think it might be wise for you to take a look, in case of mole damage. Please meet me in the clearing. Come as soon as you can.

W

Bellatrix sighed, igniting the parchment with her wand tip. This was clearly Wormtail’s attempt at a discreet letter, even though he had used her name – the dolt. He had obviously found the remaining Death Eaters, but was unsure if he could trust them, and as usual it would be up to her to ensure that things ran smoothly. She poured herself a goblet of wine, emptying the bottle in the process, but no matter – that good-for-nothing Wormtail would see to it that she had enough food and drink. Sipping her wine slowly, she thought about what lay ahead. Wormtail had proved surprisingly useful, she had to admit, but soon she would be reunited with more worthy comrades who would help fulfil the Dark Lord’s wish. She smiled to herself, running a hand over her face, down her chest and over her stomach. She hoped fervently that the Dark Lord would realise that she was a worthy vessel, and prize her above all others as he once had. Pulling on her travelling cloak, she cast one last glance around the dilapidated house. Noting that everything seemed in order, she swept from the house without a backwards glance…

***

“Where is he?” asked Harry impatiently, pacing back and forth in the drawing room of Grimmauld Place.

“Calm down, Harry,” said Hermione soothingly, “It’s not even eight o’clock yet.” She indicated the clock above the fireplace.

“Oh,” he conceded, sinking in to a squashy armchair.

“So how was Hogsmeade?” asked Ron, tossing Fudge Flies into the air and catching them in his open mouth. “Thanks for these by the way, Harry.”

“No problem. Hogsmeade was excellent,” Harry replied, a smile chasing away the frown that had been gathering on his face. He missed Ginny already, and had replayed their day out several times in his head since they parted.

He reached out and grabbed the next Fly Ron was about to eat. Popping it into his mouth, he turned to Hermione:

“What are you up to there?”

Hermione was sat cross-legged on the floor, counting out small glass bottles of her new potions and lining them up on a low table.

“Just making sure we’ve got enough of these – once we know where Bellatrix is, we’ll be needing them. I just don’t have a name for them yet.”

“Er, how about potions?” said Harry, munching on his Fudge Fly. Ron snickered, tossing Harry a few more of the fudge covered treats.

“Ho ho,” said Hermione, not bothering to look up from her counting. “No, I mean a real name – you know, like Scintillation Solution, or Babbling Beverage – I want my potions to have real titles.”

“What do they do again?” asked Ron, putting the bag of sweets aside to look at the potion bottles.

Hermione sighed in a put upon way. “This one creates smoke,” she waved a bottle containing a swirling grey liquid under Ron’s nose, “and this one makes you choke.” She pointed to the bottles filled with jet-black liquid.

“Right,” said Ron, furrowing his brow. “So… a title… a title…” he sat upright. “I’ve got it!”

“This I’ve got to hear,” laughed Harry. Hermione raised her eyebrows, distrust radiating from her very being.

Ron plucked a bottle of smoke potion from the table. “Well, it creates smoke right? And you’ll want a Latin slant on the name, like all the best potions, so… let’s call it Smokius!”

Harry doubled over with laughter. Hermione frowned.

“What?” Ron demanded, “I think it’s perfect! Shut up Harry!” he threw several chair cushions at his friend. Harry emerged from beneath the pile with his glasses dangling off one ear, still chuckling.

“And what should we call the other one? Chokius?”

“Yeah! What d’you reckon Hermione? Can Lestrange handle a bit of Smokius Chokius?”

He and Harry were both in fits now, but Hermione was not to be moved. Muttering something under her breath about ‘idiot boys’, she gathered up her potions and stormed across the drawing room. Pausing in the doorway, she turned:

“When you have quite finished,” she said in a dignified voice, “I will be waiting for Lupin, in the kitchen. You can join me if you think your tiny minds can cope.” And head held high, she swept from the room, leaving Harry and Ron howling with laughter.
An hour later, as the clock struck eight, Harry heard Lupin calling him downstairs.

“Harry? Ron? I’m home!”

They jumped to their feet and hurried down the stairs

Lupin was sitting at the long kitchen table with Hermione, the Map between them, countless candles flickering on the countertops, lending a spooky atmosphere to the room.

“Hi, Lupin,” they chorused, anxious to get started.

“Have you two calmed down yet?” asked Hermione, tartly.

“We’re perfectly calm – we just want to get on with it!” Harry looked at Lupin impatiently. “How do we do it?”

“Well, I will teach you the incantation, then we each hold our wand to the parchment, recite the words, and the Map will activate.”

“What, just like that?” asked Ron, disbelievingly.

“Well, yes. It is magic, after all,” Lupin smiled patiently. “But before we do this, I want to know more about what you intend to do when you go after her…?”

Harry, who had anticipated this, had his reply at the ready. “We go to the house, using the Invisibility Cloak or a Disillusionment Charm, throw in Hermione’s potion, Stun Lestrange and Apparate her to the Ministry.”

Ron continued: “Yeah – then we let the Ministry cart her off to Azkaban – end of story.” He made a dusting action with his hands.

Lupin raised his eyebrows. “That’s your plan? I had hoped you would involve the Auror Squad once Bella is located.”

“Yeah, well maybe – but my first concern is finding her.”

Lupin looked uneasy but said nothing. “Well, perhaps we should learn the incantation,” he cleared his throat, “It’s a little tricky. Repeat after me: Aperio exigo locus domus, femina vel compleo vel bestia penitus specialis.”

“What does it mean?” said Ron in hushed tones.

Lupin looked to Hermione, who was frowning.

“Something about revealing the exact location?” she asked, looking at Lupin, who nodded. “And femina and compleo – that’s woman and man?”

“Correct – and bestia, as you may have guessed, means animal or beast. We want the Map to reveal the house and any man, woman or beast that resides within its secret location.”

“What language are you speaking?” asked Ron, confused.

Hermione tutted. “Smokius and Chokius the only Latin you know, Ron?”

“Ah,” he said, nodding wisely at Harry. “Er, what was it again, Lupin?”

Lupin recited the incantation several more times until they had it memorised.

Looking at them with a sombre expression, Lupin exhaled deeply: “I think we’re ready. We each place a wand tip at a corner of the parchment.”

They pulled out their wands, and touched them to the Map. Harry noticed that Hermione’s hand was trembling. She looked up at him with apprehensive eyes. Harry tried to smile reassuringly but couldn’t make his mouth move in the right direction. Lupin gave a small nod, and the four of them began to recite the incantation:

“Aperio exigo locus domus, femina vel compleo vel bestia penitus specialis.”

As the chant died away, the parchment glowed a sudden, brilliant white, making them turn their faces sharply to shield their eyes. Harry recovered first, and leaned in to look at the parchment. Black lines were blurring over the page, rapidly travelling outwards. Hermione, Ron and Lupin, blinking hard, also leaned in.

“Whoa…” breathed Ron, as the black lines grew in definition, until the Gaunt house was clear. Each room was represented and Harry stared at it intently, waiting for a tiny label to appear marked ‘Bellatrix Lestrange’. Hermione and Lupin looked on eagerly. Ron was so close his long nose was nearly touching the parchment. They waited. And waited. And waited. After a few more moments of silence, Harry tore his eyes away and looked at Lupin.

“What’s happening? Why isn’t it working?”

Lupin snatched up the Map, studying intently.

“I don’t understand – it all appears to be working.”

Harry tugged the Map back from him and did the same, eyes squinting, frantic for a sign of her. “Where is she?” He felt a knot form in the pit of his stomach.

Lupin rubbed his face with his hand and sighed. “She’s not there, Harry.”

“What?” Harry barked, gripping the parchment so tight his knuckles were turning white. Hermione and Ron were staring at him, open-mouthed, disappointment etched on their faces – or was that relief Harry could see?

“She’s not there,” Lupin repeated gently.

“That’s impossible!” Harry stormed, making Hermione wince. “It’s got to be the Map! It can’t have worked properly! Let’s try the incantation again”-

-“Harry! The spell worked – Bella is not there!” Lupin spoke with clear, hard words.

Harry was steadily getting angry. How could she not be there? Ron and Hermione were still staring at him, but Harry couldn’t read their expressions.

“Harry,” Hermione began tentatively, “are you sure Dumbledore said that this is the place she would be?” she pointed a trembling finger at the Map, still clutched in his fist.

“Of course I’m sure!” Harry could feel a towering rage building up within him. Swearing loudly, he threw the parchment down and stormed from the kitchen. Hesitating for a moment, Hermione, Ron and Lupin hurried after him.


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