Chapter 76

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Harry forced his eyes open and wrapped his arms around Rabastan. Accompanying the green light was a shadow. Harry felt unable to move…he felt frozen in place…rooted to the spot… There were magnificent black wings, huge and bird-like, extending from its back. Harry saw its glowing eyes in the shadow. Death was here and someone was about to die. He wanted to scream when the shadow approached them but his lips felt like they had been sewn shut. He wanted to push Rabastan away…as far away from this shadow as possible but he was paralyzed. The shadow was right behind Rabastan now. Rabastan was yanked away from his arm and it flexed its wings, wrapping them around him and concealing him from sight. Despair welled in his heart. He wanted to stop him. If only he could move…if only he could speak…he would trade himself for Rabastan. The desolation he felt was all consuming. His mind became an icy wasteland, the wind howled in his soul and wrapped icy tentacles around his heart so tightly it almost stopped beating. The shadow grinned at him,

"Do not fret. I shall come to fetch you very soon."

Rage…That was what he felt as he struggled to move. It was like a vexing of the soul for what he felt was not human, it was twisted and distorted but it was something strong. It burned so bad like fire lacing his veins and creeping up his spine. All he could feel was desire; desire to hate. He was intoxicated with the emotion, the acidity of it was residing in his stomach waiting to be spat out of his mouth in foul and vulgar words if he were able to open his mouth. He knew he would be stared at for saying, except he wasn't going to say them, he was going to screech them with every ounce of breath that dwelled in his lungs. He couldn't…he wouldn't…He had to get Rabastan back…The shadow disappeared and whatever force that had been holding him immobile and silent vanished as well. The hall came back into focus and along with it the sounds and shouts. Harry clenched his jaw as he held onto Rabastan's body...He knew…he knew the soul had departed. He had watched death steal him away from him. He had just stood idly and watched him being stolen away. The warmth was gone…he would never feel it again… The form in his arms wasn't Rabastan…he was gone…His Rabastan was gone forever. The dead weight in his arms wasn't Rabastan…it wasn't…Death had taken him away…stolen him away…Voldemort's voice and Bella's raucous cackles tore through his senses,


Harry wasn't aware of when he pushed Rabastan's lifeless body into Voldemort's arms,

"Don't you dare let him fall."

Bella's boisterous laughter fuelled the fire that burned inside of him. Every giggle was like gasoline to it, his fists began to clench and his jaw rooted. He finally exploded with anger, with no control objects levitated and broke. The chandelier shattered and a million shards rained like tiny daggers over everyone. The stained glass windows exploded in a flurry of colour. People shouted and dropped to the floor as their primeval instincts took over. The hall was plunged into a shadowy darkness and an icy bitter cold swept through it. The colourful flashes of light that flew in his direction never managed to touch him and he imagined Voldemort had something to do with that. He unsheathed the sword in a flash and in the blink of an eye, he had Bellatrix pinned to the ground and held the sword over her throat. Fear was evident in her dark eyes and he felt savage pleasure at the sight. Fear was such a small emotion for what he intended to do to her…She was going to pay for Sirius…for his Rabastan…,

"You aren't capable of killing me."

One swipe of the sword and he could behead her but death was a mercy that he would not allow her. He laughed cruelly and chopped off her wand hand with a simple twist of his wrist. She began to scream as a fountain of blood erupted and soaked his face and shirt. He swiped his thumb over his blood covered cheek and sucked on it…hoping that the sweet taste of revenge would calm the storm of emotions in his chest. It didn't and he chopped off her other hand so that she would never be able to use a wand again. He ran his blood covered fingers through his hair and rose to his feet,

"I am not going to let you die because I fully intend to savour your screams, Bella dear."

He grabbed Rodolphus by the scruff of his neck and spoke,

"If you ever loved your brother then you will help me exact revenge from this bitch."

Rodolphus nodded shakily and Harry released him,

"Heal her before she bleeds out and lock her up downstairs."

Everything was silent around him. He sheathed his blood-stained sword and turned around. Voldemort was clutching Rabastan's lifeless form close to his chest and the image shattered his already crushed heart. The look on Voldemort's face was a mixture of pure rage and unadulterated grief. Nicholai and the head goblin wore matching grim expressions and stood by their delegations,

"Party's over. You can leave now."

He moved to where Voldemort was standing and finally took in the sight of Rabastan's face. In life, Rabastan had always had a ready smile and knowing eyes. In death he was ghostly pale, his lips, the lips he had tasted…kissed only a few moments ago, were already bluish. Though his eyes were closed he didn't have the appearance of sleep, even in deep slumber there are tiny movements and a healthy glow to the skin. This lifeless shell, so still on the earth, is his flesh and seeing it is how I know he has departed. He had left them for a new life, for whatever followed this existence. Yet, even though he knew he was gone, he kissed his head lightly and stroked back his dark hair. It was part of bidding him farewell and making a wish that they are together again in whatever came next.

Harry wrapped his arms around Rabastan's body…so that he was once again wedged between him and Voldemort…just like he had been a few minutes ago… How had things gone from good to bad to worst so fast? He wanted to shake Rabastan and ask him why…why had he sacrificed himself to save his shortened life? Why had he loved him so much when he had done nothing to warrant it? It was like a void. A never ending dark void that could never be filled. Those three unspoken words burned in his throat like smouldering coals and he wished he'd said them.

He coughed, reminding him of what death had said. No, he was not going to let it win. His grip tightened on Rabastan's body. He was not going to let Rabastan's sacrifice go in vain. Besides, he had no hope of ever seeing Rabastan or Sirius after death. They would be in heaven and he was definitely headed for hell after everything he had done…everything that he intended to do. He pressed a kiss to Rabastan's head and pulled away. The vampires, the goblins and the death eaters hadn't moved an inch. He raised an eyebrow and addressed them,

"Are you waiting for the part where I breakdown and wail for my lost love? I'm extremely sorry to disappoint you but that will not be happening. So, I suggest that you leave now."

Nicholai stepped closer and patted him on the shoulder with a solemn expression,

"You and I need to talk."

Harry's grip tightened on the sword and he ground out,

"No, we don't."

Nicholai pulled his hand away and spoke softly,

"I know we have had our differences but if you ever require my aid, do not hesitate to contact me."

Harry felt too nettled to comprehend what Nicholai was playing at or what he hoped to gain by this,

"Why do you think I would require your aid?"

Nicholai snapped his fingers and a vampire dragged a shouting, screaming Rodolphus into the hall. Harry looked questioningly at Nicholai and Nicholai spoke,

"He was trying to escape with his wife. You are fairly new to this so understand this. You absolutely cannot trust other people's sentiments. You trusted him because you thought he loved his brother…he obviously loved his wife more…"

Nicholai wasn't able to finish the sentence and Rodolphus's shouts died down as Harry beheaded him with one swift stroke of his sword. He watched with vicious gratification as the head lolled away and the body collapsed to the ground. He looked at the gathered death eaters and shouted,


Harry turned to Voldemort and pointed a finger at him,

"That goes for you too. If you try to save her from me again, I will destroy you."

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