A/N; Since this did take place, historically, in Scotland 1000 years ago, some heavy research went into this chapter. I had to look dozens of things up in order to find the information necessarily for this. Again, if you find some historical mistake, please alert me of it.
In 997, Constantine the III, ruling King of Scotland, was slain during battle were the River Almond meets other Scotland rivers(I forgot their names, to be honest.) To incorporate that into this, I made Godric his slayer, who then negotiated with the new King, Kenneth the III, over the construction of Hogwarts.
During November 13th of 1002, St. Brice Day, English Kind Æthelred the Unready ordered what would be known as theSt. Brice's Day Massacre, ordering the execution of every man of Danish descent in the country. In this, he also used it as an excuse to hunt down dozens of wizards hiding in England. In real life, this was not the case(as Wizards aren't technically real).
Kenneth the III himself was assassinated at the hands of Malcolm the II eight years later during the Battle of Monzievaird, on March 5th of 1005. In this story, while Kenneth gave the wizards free passage throught the land, Malcolm re-began their prosecution.
Also, during a time period between the years of 711 and 1492, the Iberian Peninsula(modern Spain and Portugal) was locked in war between Islamic Conquers known as the Umayyad(who took it during the early 8th century) and between Spanish Crusaders, who contiguously fought back for dominion over the territory. Now, while they didn't fight each other through that entire time period, I've stated that Salazar fled from there at a young age because of these conflicts. More specifically, he fled from Portugal(its never specifically said). I chose that place for his origin as it is also the origin of his name sake, the Portuguese Dictator António de Oliveira Salazar.
I chose Albania for Rowena's birthplace for the simple reason that her daughter fled there. If she fled there, there had to have been some special ties to that place, right? During that time period, you could say Albania was in a chaotic state. It was shifting, between being under the control of the Bulgarian Empire and that of the crumbling Byzantine Empire.
Also, I know the word 'genocide' was not officially invented until this century by Raphael Lemkin following the Holocaust(during 1945, the year the war actually ended, to be more specific), but, as this is fiction, the term in in here anyways.
Also, I stated that the Vikings were practitioners of dark magic. This is completely made up, since Durmstrang itself is in Scandinavia(It's located in either Norther Sweden or Northern Norway), were the Vikings originally hail from.
Also, there is an O.C., and some of this is told partially from his point of view. The Byzantine Duke he refers to killing is Damian Dalassenos, who was Duke of Antioch and who died in 998 during the Siege of Apamea.
A wand was held to a throat.
A gasp escaped the lips of the other.
"You've betrayed us.. Betrayed us all!" Godric practically snarled.
To this, the other gave a maniacal, insane laugh. After all, he was going to die anyways, nothing he did now could change that fact.
"You've lost, old man. They are coming... We will slaughter your women, we will slay your children and leave their bloody corpses at your feet! They are coming!"
Godric felt, for the first time in his life, actual hatred.
Rowena had told them about his kind, the ilk that had massacred the Wizards in Eastern Europe, but it was different now, to have one before him. It was different, looking the monster in the eye, at a man who would strike him down without a second thought. This was the worst kind of the monster, the one who thought what he was doing was correct.
"Give me a reason..." Godric snarled at him, digging the wand deep into the others neck.
"Are you going to kill me, wizard? Are you going to strip the life from my bones, suck the breath of life from my body?"
"I would very well like to."
"Go on, then. Its not like your kind have hearts, or are even capable of human emotions."
Godric stared at him, more rage, more hate filling him. He lifted the wand, intent on not killing him, but stunning him.
Then the entire castle shook in a great tremor, Godric momentarily lost his balance, and, in those few crucial seconds, he was shoved to the ground. The traitor turned, intent on fleeing.
Godric stood to chase him, but another tremor ripped at the earth, and, for a moment, he turned to look out of the tower, past the battlements here on the tallest of torrents, the Astronomy Tower.
What he saw made his breath hitch.
The wards had fallen...
The wards had failed them...
Years of hiding, and this was the conclusion: mass invasion by an army of Barbarian and Byzantine alike.
The wards had fallen, and Hogwarts, for the first time in history, was under attack.
"Father, father! Wake up, damn it, wake!"
"What... Lemme sleep..."
"Father! The castle is under attack!"
"What!" Salazar Slytherin shot bolt upright, all drowsiness wiped from his eyes. "Under..."
"The ward have fallen, father! They are coming!"
"What? But that... No, not po-"
Then the castle shook with a new tremor. It was not a tremor of the earth but of the sky. It was the tremor of the defenses of the castle, breaking around them. The signal of the immanent attack.
"Let us go..." Salazar said as he rose.
The son nodded, helping his father to his feet.
"Abel, listen to me. I want you to-" Salazar began.
"I'm not leaving you. I'll fight, alongside you. I won't hide, father, and you can't make me!" Abel snapped.
"Abel... Please, listen-"
"No, you listen! This is as much my home as yours! It wouldn't.. Wouldn't feel right to hide and do nothing. I'm of age, aren't I?'
"You've yet to see fifteen summers pass!"
"As stubborn as your mother," Salazar grumbled, even as he drew his wand and held it at length and fashioned his armor. "Come."
Eager, Abel stood and followed his father out the door.
He'd never make it back.
The arrows rained down from the heaves.
The assassins came in hordes.
Spells were cast, but there were too many. Far too many. But they were wizards, and their enemy, they were mortal men, and far easier to kill.
Men fought the battle. Woman rushed about, tending to the wounded.
Two held the courtyard against onslaught.
"Behind you!" Abel shouted.
Salazar turned, just in time to parry a strike. Then, waving his wand like a whip, he sent his assailant back.
They were everywhere.
The numbers seemed endless.
It was a brutal dance. Even the pair of them had some difficulty, despite the fact that the enemy refused to go anywhere near them. A circle of the fallen surrounded Salazar and his son as they stood there panting, waiting.
They just had to hold them off, just a bit longer... Just a bit...
"CHARGE!" a voice thundered from the distance. Rowena was making her move.
The enemy did not see it coming, how could they? Out of nowhere, out of the shadows, out of thin air, they appeared. Curses were flung, bodies were flung, sparks it aflame.
Then Salazar felt himself being pushed out o the way suddenly, and he stumbled, not having expected it. His senses kept him from collapsing to the stone floor, but what he saw next made ice grow in his blood as he turned.
His son was clutching at his own neck. His hands were stained crimson. One long, thin arrow stuck through, between the head and the body, even as he collapsed to the ground.
He'd taken the arrow, taken the arrow meant for Salazar...
The arrow meant to slay the great sorcerer had struck the son..
"NO!" Salazar finally managed to shout when conscious thought entered his brain once more, but it was too late. He collapsed on his knees, lifted the head of his one and only son into his lap, staring into his dying eyes.
"No, please... Please!" Salazar pleaded, tears running tracks down his cheeks.
A hand lifted up to touch his cheek. A broken smile crossed the face of the dying. Then the hand fell, fell to the cold stone floor. He head fell back, and grey eyes cold as steel lay there staring on forever at what no longer was.
A man howled.
It was the call of the broken.
September 9th, 998 A.D.
Four stood in a circle, their hands held tightly in that of the one next to them
The lion, the snake, the badger and the eagle.
Ancient runes were etched in the stone around them as they each inclined their heads, muttering enchantments.
Around them, the valley was void. There was nothing, nothing but a lone forest, a great lake which glistened in the sunlight, and a towering hill. Perhaps not a hill, but, as it was not tall enough to be classified a mountain, a hill they called it.
There was a small camp, were children ran about, playing. Mothers hung clothes on lines, fathers polished spears. A new comer walked among them, and though he treated lightly and appeared to blend in with the rest, many were those who noticed him, shooting him looks.
One little girl tripped and fell.
"Are you okay, sweety?" the man helped her to her feet, then gasped in horror when he saw her face.
"I'm fine, mister!" her deformed face, marred by burns, smiled at him, before the little girl turned to go off and play with her friends. The man merely sat frozen, knelt in the exact same spot, staring after the little girl, the deformed little girl.
"We were attacked on our way here," a voice spoke. The man stood and turned sharply to gaze at the source, an elderly woman, ancient, her face creased a thousand times over. She was gazing at the little girl, before looking back at the man. "They tried to... To..." she began to choke slightly as a tear fell from her old eyes. "Burn her, at the stake... But we witches don't burn easy, eh?" she gave a toothless, humorless and forced laughed.
To this, the man could only nod.
After all, he'd never been a person of many words. The spoken word was so much harder to attain than the endless train of thought.
He turned to gaze at the four, still locked in their circle, still locked in their chant. Faces of legend swelled before him. Four of the most powerful magic bearers in the world, history, really, were standing before him.
"What are they doing?" he asked the old woman.
"Defensive enchantments. This valley was void of life before they came here, together.." the ancient then turned to look at him. "They're setting up wards, in case of an attack..."
"But... Surely this is the safest place for wizards in all of Europe? Isn't it here that-"
"Yes, but precautions must be taken. Mount Olympus in Greece was once one of the greatest gathering center for out kind, yet they were exterminated, were the not?" the elder countered, wisdom in her aged voice. More than wisdom, pain and knowledge.
"There? Yes. But... Some things are best left forgotten." the old woman said, before limping away on her staff, an ancient wooden thing with splinters falling here and there.
The man turned back to the four locked in the center, around their runic circle. He'd heard of them, each and everyone of them. He could not tell whom was whom, but he knew the names;
Godric Gryffindor, born in the wild terrains of Northern England, and a warrior since birth. It was said that it was he who found the other three, he who brought them here, this last great sanctuary.
Salazar Slytherin, said to have fled from the massacres in the Iberian Peninsula in the wars between the Muslim Moors and the Spanish Catholics.
Rowena Ravenclaw, the fair and the wise, hailing from the war torn edges of Eastern Europe, ravaged by the conflicts between two mighty empires.
And, last of all, Helga Hufflepuff, from the territory known as Wales. A healer and an inspirationalist, she had been a symbol of hope to refuges of war torn lands.
Suddenly, the runes around them shined with an unnatural pale blue, before it spread, like the blood in the veins, linking across the ground, across the valley itself along cracks. Gasps were heard, children jumped to their feet, and the skies above shined as a great dome of energy surrounded them.
The barriers had been lifted, and, just like those on Mount Olympus, they had incaged the valley in their defenses.
The chants grew louder, the heads of the four swung up as the spells encased them, their eyes rolled into the back of their skulls. The power pooled in the center point between the four, before shooting out in a thin, blinding light, striking up at the sky. The clouds shifted under it, surrounding it like the eye of a hurricane.
Electrical sparks could be seen in the skies above. The dome grew hotter, its strength grew wider, till at last it was done. Four founders collapsed in a heap, panting, their magical energy spent.
Nothing would get through those kinds of wards, nothing would be able to penetrate them. A safe heaven in all the turmoil.
Then one of the four, a women with hair dark as the glistening lake and the eyes. Dark as midnight, not a speck of color within them.
"Another comes?" she spoke as she rose.
The other three shot her questioning looks, but, following her gaze, they locked eyes on the new comer.
"And were might you hail from?" a man of long limbs, a monkeyish face and a thin beard to boast, asked as he rose. Hie eyes were a pale grey, and no warmth radiated from them. They were cold, and told of pain.
The man fell to his knees, his eyes set on the ground, even as the four stood in a semi-circle before him. He bowed, in respect, feeling their power.
Then, a gentle hand met with his shoulder, and the man, boy, really, looked up at her. "You don't have to bow, not to us. Rise, and tell us your name." the woman said. Her blue eyes, unlike the grey eyes of the other man, were lit and brimming with warmth and emotion. It was easy to tell who this one was. This one had to be Helga Hufflepuff, the woman with a heart made of melting gold.
The man nodded, rose, and looked at them all.
"My name is Callistus... I fled Constantinople when I heard there was a place were our kind walk in freedom." Callistus told them.
"So far has word spread. Yet we have yet a full year settled in this valley." the other man, the one with auburn hair and a thick beard, spoke. Hie green eyes sparkled with wonder.
Suddenly, the man with silver eyes had him by the throat, and before Callistus could even begin to comprehend what was happening, his mind was assaulted. Images swarmed across his visage, memories came flooding back, the echos of the past sounded fiercely within him.
"Salazar!" a voice shouted.
Callistus fell to the floor, panting, gripping at his neck. But it was not his neck that hurt, no, it was his mind. His head burned with ache.
"What were you thinking!" a voice shouted.
"Can the three of you not smell a lie when presented before you?" Slytherin snapped at them, before glaring at Callistus' fallen form. "Disgusting... A disgrace to our kind."
"Leave him be!" the woman, the one Callistus had assumed was called Helga, snapped at him.
"Snivelling traitorous swine." Slytherin spat.
Many were now the ones n looking at the scene.
"Please... They tortured me... Please..." Callistus pleaded, looking up, tears brimming in his eyes.
"Salazar... What has he done?" the other male, who could only be Gryffindor, asked, his eyes never wandering off Callistus.
"The witch slayers had captured him... And he led them, directly into a coven, as to save himself." Slytherin said with distaste.
Many stared in horror at Callistus.
"I- I was twelve! I didn't- I didn't know-"
"You knew full well!" Slytherin roared.
"Salazar, he was a child!" Ravenclaw reprimanded him.
"And? At the age of ten, I did not do the same, now did I? No, I fought back!" Slytherin shot back.
"Not many have your bravery. Or your cunning, dear friend." Gryffindor spoke. "Not many are those who could have single-handedly lead a band of assassins into a trap of your choosing."
Many stared at Slytherin for this.
"I'd already lost my father, and my two aunts. I wasn't about to let them take any more from me." he said simply.
"Come, child..." the elder, the same old woman with the ancient skin, creased a thousand times over, made her way forth. She helped Callistus to his feet. "With me.." she said simply, leading him away.
December 21st, 1002 A.D.
Stone by stone, brick by brick, out of nothing rose the great castle, dominating the landscape. The cold air of December stung, and, tonight on the years longest night, the winds struck their hardest.
The small fortress erected upon the hilltop guarded against the winds, but not much else. House elves patrolled up and down, feeding soup to the injured.
There are tales that say Hogwarts was founded as a school, as a center of learning. That it was education that united the four founders as one, education and education alone that wrought forth its great walls and spanning pathways.
This was a myth.
It was necessity that had built the place then, and necessity that kept it standing now.
Refuges came in, day in and day out. From all over Europe came the wounded the broken. The Christian Crusades had yet to launch, but they were brewing. The battle was coming, coming closer. They all knew it, they could see the signs already brewing, even if the climax itself had yet to come, even though the pinnacle of the battle had yet to form.
After all, one only needed to look to war-torn Iberia. Three centuries had passed since its fall, but even now, its plains were victim to constant strife.
Callistan sat with his legs crossed and his eyes closed as he leaned back against the cold brick. The elder women, Verna, sat a little away from him. He and she had come to be close over the years. She was, by far, the oldest witch here, having been born more than a centuries past.
She had taken him in, since that first day. Many had been wary of him after Slytherin's out burst, but had come to trust him over time.
Even if he wasn't of Wizarding descent.
"So... You killed him..." Verna repeated yet again.
"They were laying siege to Apamea. I guess he recognized me, even after all those years. Lucky me, they never tied me to the crime, or I'd have a hefty fine on my head for slaying a Byzantine Official." Callistan replied bitterly.
"Of course. Assassination of a Duke is not a forgivable crime." Verna stated.
"The bastard deserved what he got." Callistan hissed with venom.
"Careful, now. Hate is a piousness blade that has taken ma-"
Callistan glared at her. "And what do you know of pain, of guilt and shame?" he snapped at her, before standing and leaving the old woman he had come to see as a mother figure behind.
He wasn't the only one who had come to see Verna in that role, actually.
Many were those she had taken under her wing, many were those she had looked after. She had a kind heart, that woman.
It was a cold winter, as ice fell down on Europe.
A mere month prior, English King Æthelred had ordered the slaughter of all men, women, and children of Danish descent within his domain. Of course, the official record was that only the men were massacred, but were had the survivors fled?
It seemed the slaughter had been used to mask another slaughter, one under the curtain of what was known and unknown. Dozens of Wizarding refuges making their way to the safe heaven of the Valley of Hogwarts met their ends at the hands of cut-throat assassins, under direct orders from the young King.
Of course, Scotland itself, were Hogwarts was nested, was safe. Gryffindor and King Kenneth the III were old allies, Gryffindor having helped the other in gaining his throne. How? Five years ago, it was by Gryffindor's blade that the former king, Constantine the III, was felled in battle at the river Almond.
Many things had changed, in those five years.
Out of nothing, they had constructed so much.
Four years ago, when Callistan had arrived, the wards had met their completion, encasing the Valley of Hogwarts in a defensive web which only men of magical blood could traverse.
Three years prior, the construction of the castle had begun, and the four founders had begun to train the young in the magical arts.
Two years prior, half a dozen centaurs had made negotiations with the four founders over the forest territory, before they settled among its midst.
And, one year prior, the town of Hogsmeade had been founded by one of Hufflepuffs apprentices, Hengist of Woodcroft. Hogsmeade, though it lacked the defenses of the Valley of Hogwarts itself, had also begun to flourish.
A magical community amongst the turmoil.
And, it was not for the first time that cold winter's day that an argument had broken out between the four founders.
"I do not trust these Muggles, these Muggle-borns as you call them... Their kind have laid waste to our own, why should we grant them refuge?" for perhaps the hundredth time, Salazar Slytherin made his argument.
"And what would you suggest? That we leave them to burn, Salazar?" Helga said hotly.
"Look at me, Helga. In Iberia, my wife and I, we took their kind in. And do you know what happened, Helga? Do you wish to know what happened to us because of our sympathy?" Salazar began.
"They took her. They took my dear Ruth, and they killed her! They left her body, battered and broken without any manner of mercy! And, when I arrived on the scene... My son. They were cornering the boy, Helga! Had I been delayed a minute longer, Abel would not breath!" Salazar hissed at her.
Helga Hufflepuff sighed, defeated.
Godric, however, ever tactless, refused to do as such.
"You cannot judge them all by the actions of two-"
"They killed my Ruth!"
"And, by the Ancients, I've killed men and women alike too!" Godric snapped at him. "I have seen war! Since I was raised, I have seen battle. I have rushed into fields of fallen, were blades clash and the blood of innocents is spilled. But if there is one thing time has thought me, it is this; though men may look the same, and share similar backgrounds, it is their choices that forge them, and by the Ancients, if there is one thing I will do right in my life, it is this! I refuse to merely shut out gates to them!"
Salazar glarrd venom.
A small, seven year old boy standing at the door have a sigh, making the four turn.
"Abel... Go back to sleep, you are sick." Salazar said.
"I heard shouting." the little boy replied, looking at them all. "I don't like it when you all fight..."
The four founders exchanged looks, but it was Rowena, not Salazar, who approached the child.
She knelt before him, looking him in the eyes. "Why don't you go find Helena? She is lonely, and misses you. Go on, find her." Rowena told the boy.
"Promise no more shouting first." the boy replied. Such innocence, even from a child who had witnessed his own mother murdered at the age of two- not that he remembered, he had blocked out the traumatizing event.
The four couldn't help but smile at that.
"Very well... Go, she's waiting." Rowena said.
"Alright." Abel smiled slightly, then turned and left. Rowena sighed, closed the door, and cast a silencing charm on it to keep anyone else from hearing their discussion.
As she turned, the old argument had already started anew.
March 30th, 1005
"Four nights ago, Kenneth the III was assassinated at the hands of Máel Coluim mac Cináeda, more commonly know by the people as Malcolm the II at the Battle of Monzievaird." Godric told them all solemnly.
In the three years that had passed, Hogwarts had grown exponentially. What had once been mere stones could now pass truly as a castle, instead of the old appearance it had held, were it looked nothing more than aged and battered ruins.
"And what does that mean for us?" a voice called, and all eyes turned to the young prodigy, Merlin. While all four founders had taken interest in him, it was under Salazar's wing that the boy had fallen. Young and powerful, some believed it would be Merlin that would lead Wizardkind back to greatness. Of course, that was before Merlin informed them that he had no intention of dominating everything, which many had seen as a waste.
"It means that our relations with the King have been cut." Salazar said as he rose. He shot a look at Godric, and the other nodded at him. Salazar then turned to the mass surrounding them. "Immediately after the battle, I went to negotiate a cease fire with Malcolm. Once he discovered what I was, he quickly ordered my execution..." and with this, the powerful sorcerer let the cloth over his chest fall, and many were those who gasped.
It was a wonder he could even stand..
Lines were cut deep, etched into his skin. The grazes were deep, cutting in like a blade into his skin.
"They captured me quickly, and, before I had chance to defend myself, had me wrapped in chains. They attempted to torture the location of this valley out of me.." the last he said with distaste, hatred, and just a hint of pride. Pride in himself, in that he had resisted them, despite the red that spanned his skin.
"How did you escape?" a voice asked in awe.
"I rescued him. And a hell of a fight it was." Godric spoke.
"I thank you, old friend." Salazar nodded to him.
"We are brothers, you and I." Godric smiled at him, but the smile was marred by the grimace that his marks his features since news of the King's assassination had met his ears.
"Under Kenneth, we did not have to hide. He gave us free rein to pass thought the land without oppression, so long as we kept our presences concealed. However, under Malcolm..." Rowena began.
"He is likely to attempt genocide against us." Merlin spoke. Rowena nodded gravely.
Many felt fear at the words.
The very thing they had been fleeing from for years.
"The fortifications of the castle have been set. They will not be able to penetrate it, or, for that matter, even see it. Still, more may come in time due to the increased slaughters." Helga told them all.
"Why not fortify Ireland?" a voice called.
"And face the wrath of the Vikings?" Merlin called back before any of the founders could comment. "They are the vilest of our kind, the practice the darkest of sorcery. While here, we are persecuted by the humans, there we will find conflict with brothers of equal caliber that would slay us and use our blood in ancient dark rites."
None spoke, no one wanted to. And even if they did, what were they to say?
The four founders rose.
"We fortify the castle. At dawn, I want every able-bodied man to accompany me. We will stalk across Scotland, and gather those of our kind seeking refuge before this new King can slaughter them all." Godric spoke.
There were nods and a few nervous looks at his words, but in the end, everything was agreed upon.
That lone decision would end in catastrophe.