Chapter 17

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Before Harry could react. Protests from two sides were screeched out at the same time. Harry realized that Umbridge and Bellatrix had been the one's to screech out,

"Potter, he's not even qualified…."

Voldemort had raised his hand and spoke,

"One at a time, ladies."

It was Bellatrix that went first,

"My lord, Potter cannot bear such a high post in the ministry. He cannot even be trusted. On top of everything, he's the enemy. We should kill him."

Voldemort passed no comment on Bellatrix's objections and turned to Umbridge,

"What do you wish to say?"

Umbridge bowed her head in front of Voldemort,

"My lord, surely Potter is not a viable choice for this post. He possesses no experience. I would like to present myself as a candidate as I have worked on this post for a long time and I am certain that I can serve you better."

Voldemort smirked in amusement. Harry was equally amused because he saw the way Bellatrix had her teeth barred at Umbridge. He wished they would finish each other off in a cat fight. That would be extremely entertaining. Voldemort turned to Harry and spoke,

"Do you have anything to say, Harry?"

Harry wondered what he was supposed to say. He wanted to accept the post, just to spite the two women that he hated the most in the world. He wanted to see them burn. Harry finally replied,

"Sure, I'll accept the post."

Voldemort's smirk widened and Harry realized that Voldemort had expected that and foreseen his reply. He could see Umbridge and Bellatrix seething and he could not explain the pleasure he felt in his heart at that sight.

Voldemort turned to his death eaters and then spoke,

"I shall assume the role of the new Minister for Magic. If there are any objections then you may voice them now."

Cheers and exclamations of joy reverberated through the hall. Harry observed that Bellatrix was glaring at him murderously. Harry winked at her and looked away. He realized that it was going to be fun. This was his only opportunity to get his revenge on Bellatrix. But he was concerned about his decision as well. Voldemort had specifically assigned him that post because he wanted to keep him in his sight. He knew that Voldemort was waiting for him to slip up and reveal his secret and if he had to work with him then he was certain that he would slip up somehow. He would not be able to conceal it forever.

Voldemort announced that the celebrations would continue in the evening and dismissed his death eaters to assume control of their posts instantly. He turned to the survivors and asked them if they would side with him or die. Umbridge along with the rest of the survivors had vowed allegiance to Voldemort and he had dismissed them as well with the promise that he would mark them in the evening.

Voldemort's promise of marking them made Harry feel concerned for himself. He would not take the mark, no matter what. He was not going to be one of Voldemort's follower. Harry shivered at the thought of his corpse with a dark mark on it. No, he would not tolerate it.

Voldemort approached Harry and tapped the chains with his wand. They slid away from his wrists and arms but Harry didn't move. He continued to look away and then finally spoke,


Voldemort chuckled softly,

"Because I believe that this job may give you a reason to live."

Harry felt his heart jump at that. Reason to live? Voldemort's wording was apprehensive and Harry knew that he had used them specially to unnerve him. Harry met Voldemort's gaze and realized that the man had reverted to his human persona again,

"I am not suicidal."

Voldemort moved his hand to touch Harry's cheek but Harry immediately pulled away,

"Don't touch me."

He realized that he had told Voldemort that countless times now. At first, he had said that because he really didn't want Voldemort to touch him. Now he just said it because he was afraid that Voldemort's touch would make him blush again and he didn't want that. He hated himself for feeling the way he did. He was acting like a bloody school girl. Voldemort's voice forced him out of his thoughts,

"Harry, you may begin work now."

Harry leaned back in his seat and spoke,

"What am I supposed to do?"

Voldemort turned his back to Harry,

"For one, you can order everyone around."

Harry laughed at that. He had never desired power. He knew that if anyone else were in his place, they would be thrilled at the prospect of the power that he had just gained but he just couldn't bring himself to feel excited. But there was one thing that he was extremely looking forwards to and that was ordering Bellatrix around. He rose to his feet, stretched and spoke,

"You know you made a huge mistake selecting me as your senior undersecretary. I'm definitely going to make you regret it."

In a matter of seconds, Voldemort had his arm wrapped tight around his waist and was holding him firmly from behind. Harry struggled against him but Voldemort's grip was relentless,

"Are you certain that you can keep up with me, Harry?"

Harry grew still as Voldemort buried his face in the crook of his neck. He tried to keep his breathing even but there was something in the way Voldemort held him that made him breathless. He closed his eyes and gulped visibly. He had definitely bitten off more than he could ever chew. He had told Voldemort that he would make him regret his decision but it was Voldemort that had achieved that task with a single touch.

Harry wanted to melt into the touch. He never wanted it to end. But this was wrong. It was extremely wrong. He couldn't indulge himself. This was going to end. It was bound to end because he was going to die. He had tried not to feel. He had tried his very best not to feel. He had buried his emotions, hopes and sentiments the day he had accepted Sirius's death. He had vowed not to feel and yet here he was. He had sworn that he wouldn't cry but his heart couldn't take anymore of this. Tears streamed down his eyes and he couldn't stop them no matter how hard he tried.

Voldemort spun him around and noticed the tears. He had been playing Harry before but he now he could not deny that he had gotten attached and the same was the case with Harry. His tears were proof of that. How had he grown so close to him? Maybe he had gotten to absorbed in the games that he had been playing with Harry to notice that he had begun to emotionally connect with him. Voldemort raised his hand to wipe away his tears but stopped himself. Was this right? What was this going to result in. He dammed the consequences, wiped away Harry's tears and spoke,

"You can rely on me, Harry. I shall never deceive you."

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