Outside, the stream of students was pushing in the direction of Hogsmeade, away from the skirmish behind them. Hogwarts was mostly emptied, though parts of the castle groaned where cracks had run up to web between them. Somewhere in it all, Dementors had strayed onto the battlefield, drawn by the intensity of emotions which made them hungry. Members of the staff were seeing to them, as well as those who belonged to the Order which had been summoned sometime during the attack via Fawkes. Patronus littered the grounds in flashes of glistening silver, driving against the Dementors who were behaving boldly enough to seek the students. One Dementor had slipped by, sweeping close to where Hermione stood. Its hooded head reached towards her, the tattered black sleeves of its arms stretching to enfold her.
Though many of the creatures who had taken up Voldemort's call had been defeated, those of a darker nature yet remained. The animated corpse of Fred Weasley thrust himself outside, stalking clumsily over the ground as he cast about, searching. A little further in the field, as Lucius stood there staring, the scream that Bellatrix Lestrange prepared to unleash was silenced as the large black dog gave one large sniff to her face, before its head flashed down and its mouth closed over the entire width of her face with an unmistakeable sound of tearing muscle.
The two figures at the very edge of the Forbidden Forest stepped closer towards the fray. The moonlight cut open by the glow of red eyes and a neighboring streak of silver across a pair of circular glasses. Harry Potter stood at Voldemort's side, making no further movements towards the battlefield other than those few steps.
From the Quidditch field ran the werewolf Lupin. Bloodied and eyes shining gold in the dark. Hooked fingers reached out, clutching the shoulders of a straggler vampire, tossing the woman down upon the ground and quickly disposing of her by a few quick lashes of claws against her neck. Feral and crimson mouthed, he tossed his head to the side and sniffed the air, stopping dead when he caught sight of the black dog mauling LeStrange. Or perhaps it was the figure coming up behind the pup, shifting and dragging itself.
A pair of broken glasses perched upon a rotted nose. Wild black hair crusted and plastered upon a blue-black spotted forehead and dried lips open, mumbling a wet, gurgling sound coming out on a trail of black oil down its chin. Griffen stood alongside Rosalyn, staring wide eyed as he motioned towards the outer fields. A white glowing wave coming towards them. Shining, blinding against the night.
Ronald Weasley turned to Percy, eyes blazing in the darkness. "What did you do that for? That was Fred!" he shouted, his lanky frame looming over his elder brother. "You blew up-" Suddenly, Ron was cut off by a soft shout in the distance. "Ron!" Hermione huffed a few yards away, her face lit softly with a Lumos on her wand. "Thank God you're al-" Her words were lost in a shriek as the Dementor lunged for her arm. Scrambling for her wand, she stuttered a quick Expecto Patronum! but the words were lost again as the dark figure enveloped her.
In the distance, Professor McGonagall was herding a large mass of younger students. Spots of red, yellow, green, and blue shimmered in the moonlight as the children ran towards Hogsmeade. "Incendio!" shouted the Headmistress, lighting a billowing figure ahead of them. "Go, children!" she insisted, urging all who saw her to head for safety.
Oblivious or perhaps unaffected by the scene around him, Colin came to a stop outside the doors of Hogwarts, his attention was not drawn to the zombies or the dementors that swarmed the students or even his fellow housemates. A seventh-year fell to a Dementor off to Colin's right and the mousy fifth-year did not even blink an eyelash. Where was Dennis?
Rosalyn's hand groped blindly, catching Griffen's sleeve and curling her fingers around the fabric, brown eyes wide with horror on a face that was usually so impassive. It was only for a moment that she held onto the boy beside her before the sight of a dementor looming over a third-year member of her own house shocked her into attention and she ran toward them, her wand raised. "Expecto Patronum!" she shouted, a ghost-like eagle bursting from the end of her wand and swooping forward into the dementor that crumpled beneath it.
Sarah struggled to keep up with Lisa and Elijah in the press of panicked students. They were running towards Hogsmeade. Sarah just hoped there were no surprises waiting for them there. Mara gasped as they reached the exit and saw the battle going on outside. She ran down the steps, ducking a stray spell, only to spin around when George pulled away from Percy. When he spoke to her, she could tell by the look in his eyes that he wasn't seeing anything happening around them. She grabbed George's arm. "Come on. We have to get to the village." She heard Snape telling them to head for the village and turned their little group that direction.
The black dog shifted, dark eyes glancing up towards the elder Malfoy as he chewed something Lucius didn't want to think too hard to figure out what it was. Their eyes met and as he took a step backward, the dog kept its gaze locked on him. Lucius didn't notice the figure approaching, now dragging its left leg behind it. All he could see was the world spinning in a half circle as he pivoted around and just..ran. Blonde hair catching the breeze behind him as he took off at a suprising speed for a man his age under all those clothes. He kept running past the students, past Rosalyn's attack of the dementor, past Dobby who'd come out using his elvish magic on the last of the vampires and even Dumbledore who began to cross the lawn in the direction of Voldemort. It was a collision that broke his escape, oddly enough with his own son. Causing them to topple over a small hill.
"This is madness!" Lisa cried out, clutching her once again illuminated wand as they ran in the crush of students for the village. "Where are we all going to go in Hogsmeade? Flood the streets?" she inquired, sounding nervous. Her arm was linked with her brother's, and she focused only ahead, intent on getting the two of them out of there alive.
It took George a minute to gain his footing as Mara pulled him along. He stumbled, but caught himself, and ran along side her. "Hogsmeade..." he repeated, his mind clicking. It was important to pay attention to the here and now, so he shoved his horror down as far as he could. "My place. I'll open up the doors and let in as many students as I can."
Making a small turn towards the boy beside him, Voldemort's colorless lips stretched into the mimick of a smile. "The choice is yours, Harry Potter. You see here proof of my offer." With that whisper, the Dark Lord began to move in the direction of Dumbledore, as the aged Headmaster moved towards him in a timely fashion. "You had better hurry with that decision, else I may become too distracted."
A flutter of silver bats swarmed around Hermione and the Dementor which had its hold of her. The creature lurched back, as an arm locked around the girl's waist from behind and she lost her connection with the grass under her feet. A sidelong twist deposited her back down, as the low voice of Snape sounded dryly next to Hermione's ear. "I'd have marked that performance down considerably, Miss Granger. You can handle yourself from here, hm?" Snape vanished from her side, mingled in amongst the hooded creatures in black.
The progress of George and Mara was slowed, suddenly, by the shadow that lurched itself out of the fray and launched itself upon the woman at George's side. Poised upon her, wearing a half-grin, Fred Weasley met the eyes of his living twin. "Hi, Georgie."
Tom Riddle came out through the doors, the path mostly cleared for him. Friend or foe was blasted out of his way as the future Dark Lord came out in his search for Ginny Weasley. Limping a bit beside Avery, though keeping himself drawn up with pride and force of will, Draco lowered his wand from where he had been cutting through the ranks of zombies shuffling out of the doors. He turned back to the fray in time to see a familiar streak of gold coming at him, and the blond was knocked off his feet with a howl of pain as he went toppling with Lucius, accepting the brunt of his father's weight.
"I want the proof first. Give me him before I agree to this." Harry followed behind Voldemort, eyeing the battlefield and seeing the approach of Dumbledore. His face was hard as he looked up at Voldemort. Breathlessly whispering. "Prove it." It was almost as much of a challenge as it was a demanding plea.
From behind Dumbledore, Neville Longbottom watched, nodding to the Headmaster to stand close to the lumbering Half Giant only a few steps away. Lupin sprung up on his feet, bewildered. Snapped fully out of the rage that overtook him by that sight, he glanced from the dog to the long-dead thing and back. As the image he thought was gone forever came to a stop behind the dog, he began to walk towards it. The light neared. And bodies began to come out of it. Silken and crystalline. The unicorns joined the fight, lead by Honoria. The witch standing behind them, her wand poised high. Mara could nearly touch one as it galloped past, attacking one of the flesh eaters who was only moments away from taking a fistfull of the Slytherin's hair.
Hermione gasped quickly as she was freed from the Dementor's grasp. Snape had already disappeared into the crowd, Dementor fallen at her feet. She didn't have time to react; there was no time to react. There was only one goal in mind now: Get to safety. "Ron!" she shouted again, running to meet the Weasley boys in the field ahead. "Town," she said breathlessly, and a moment later, broke into a run with the two Weasleys at her side.
Far ahead, McGonagall unleashed a large silver lynx upon an approaching Dementor. Students rushed past her making their way towards safety ..
Pansy was one of the last to escape the castle, her breathing laboured and hair in a riot around her face that was pale with fear. She paused, glancing behind her once more before turning to look at the scene in front of her, her eyes falling on Tom and his raised wand. She shouted his name, racing toward him as fast as one could run in high-heels. Of course, had she known they'd be fighting for their lives later that evening, she probably would have changed her shoes when she had the chance.
Colin gave a feral snarl as one of the zombies limped toward him, lifting his wand and blasting a hole through the creature's chest that of course did not destroy it, but did manage to slow it enough for him to put a safe distance between them.
"I don't care... where we go..." panted Sarah as they ran. "Just as long... as it's safer... than here." She stumbled as another student ran into her and almost fell, hitting Lisa in the process.
Mara choked back a scream as something grabbed her. She turned her head just far enough to see the face of Fred Weasley looming over her. Her grip tightened on George's arm as she frantically tried to get free. From the corner of her eye she saw the shining form of a unicorn pass them by.
Lucius rolled with Draco to a stop at the bottom of the hill. Looking up, they couldn't see the attack. Only the outline of Avery against the white, gold, green and red streaks of light. Draco found himself being pinned there, his father's eyes stern through disheveled white hair as he spoke. "We will stay right here." Avery began to descend towards the pair, slipping and sliding here and there.
As McGonagall lead the students towards Hogsmeade, a pair of eyes watched them go. Over the students heads, the spell was cast. Rippling past Hermione's hair and hitting the teacher in the back. The whispered Crucio landing home from the hooded figure that approached.
George gaped at Fred. "Uh, you're not looking so good," he stammered after a moment. He peered at his dead twin around Mara, and released the girl's arm. He reached over and grabbed his brother by the shoulders, trying not to retch at the stench of decaying flesh. He wrenched the red head away from Mara. "You're supposed to be dead, you know," he said sadly.
"Are you okay?" she called back to Sara, not stopping to actually look behind her. She just kept on running. Had to get to safety--was that a unicorn? No distractions, keep running. "We'll have to go into a small store or something!"
That zombie which was seeking to attack Colin was abruptly attacked itself as a light weight threw itself recklessly onto the zombie's back. A fist proceeded to pound against its skull, ignoring the sticky mess that peeled away on his fingers in a web of crust as Dennis wildly hit at the creature. "You leave my brother alone, you smelly undead hellion!"
Tom whipped towards Pansy as she ran to meet him. He eyed her warily, openly cautious, as his wand remained poised in the air, only now in her direction. "Pansy.."
Fred blinked at George as his brother pointed out the obvious. "I know. It's really rather bizarre, I'd say. Erm -- a moment, if you would?" Fred twisted in the grip of his twin, hand reaching out seemingly of its own accord as it cracked against the skull of a fourth-year Ravenclaw scurrying past. He sighed. "I really do hate doing that.."
As Lucius kept his son down in the grass, and one of the elder's hands brushed up along his arm, Draco's nod was caught off by a sharp flinch of pain before natural instinct kicked in and sent one of his fists swinging blindly at his father in a daze of pain and a need to make it stop.
Voldemort paused at Harry's words, smirking back at him. "Ahh. Somehow, I knew you might make that demand of me." The brother of Harry's own wand drew out into the Dark Lord's hand, directing itself in the direction of the werewolf and the pair of undead. A dazzle of white blasted out of his wand, firing directly into the black dog that poised to leap over Bellatrix and catch up with Lucius Malfoy. As the bolt hit, the black dog whined loudly, shrinking backwards with a shudder. Yelping still, it whirled and sprinted back into the trees behind.
Harry watched the dog rushing past and disappearing into the forest. If that was to reassure him that the promise was true, it did a very poor job. Gritting his teeth, Harry brought his wand up towards Voldemort. Eyeing him down the length of his arm. "Not good enough." Tears welled up again in his eyes, this was the second time tonight. The other being when he saw the dead face of his mother looming above him on the battleground. Luckily, he'd never seen the figure of James that turned now to face Lupin.
As Dumbledore neared Voldemort, the old man held his hand out towards Harry. "Ignore him, Harry. Tom! Bring this to a stop." Lupin stared as James turned. The two Gryffindr Seekers: exchanging a lingering stare at one another. Lupin's wolvish eyes widening and reflecting the image of the one in front of him like a mirror in their depths. It was that action that paused the creature, as it stared at itself in its own gaze. Even as its fingers lifted, twisted and long broken and fused together, it stayed still.
The Headmistress fell to her knees as a sharp pain entered her side, running through every nerve, every bit of flesh in her body. Dark eyes grew wide as the pain becomes unbearable. Her limbs could not move except for minute movements of pain, and yet her mind knew that it was a Crucio, knew what would be the proper incantation to end the curse. Now, however, she was hopeless as her wand fell to the ground by her side.
"Professor!" Hermione shouted, running up to the fallen figure. Gold brown eyes scanned the scene. What was the spell? Where had they learned it? Clutching her wand, Hermione pointed the end to the stricken figure. "Finite Incantatem!" she said in hope that it would counter the spell. *fin*
Pansy staggered to a halt just a yard in front of Tom, her eyes trained on his wand. She fell backward a step, her hands lifting in front of her defensively. "Tom?" she repeated, though her voice was more questioning and hesitant than before.
At the voice of his smaller brother, Colin whipped around, relief evident on his face. "Dennis!" he shouted, smiling despite the chaos around him. He ran back to the zombie, his wand forgotten as he kicked at it, managing to break one of its rotted legs, causing it to lose its footing and tumble to the ground.
"Fine." She managed to catch her balance and continued running, looking for the nearest shop that they could hide in. Honeydukes shouldn't be too far ahead. "Try up there.." she yelled up to Lisa.
Mara knew she should have run the moment she was free, but she'd froze. Now she was trapped between the two struggling and the trees behind her. There was no way for her to get past them without putting herself back within Fred's reach. She clutched her wand in her fist, not really sure what kind of spell to use.
The town of Hogsmeade greeted most of the students with the safety they were looking for. Voldemort's Army had already gone through that town. Several shoppes burning in the night, the streets littered but there was life. People rushing in and out of homes and stores. Making sure to tend to the wounded and heal them to prevent losing any more lives. The group found themselves being waved at here and there, by welcoming hands that would give them a hiding spot inside. Though more evidence was seen on the streets, a body lie here and there where the people tried to flee.
Lucius rolled back off Draco and let out a howl of his own pain. Blood exploding from his nose. Reaching up his gloved hand, Malfoy senior grabbed hold of his face and shouted from beneath the palm of his hand. "Pull yourself together, Draco! Now!"
As the pain in McGonagall came to an end, the one who saved her (Hermione) found herself the new target of the same curse. This time, it came blazing emerald. Slamming against the back of the girl's head. As she fell, Lavender Brown went with her. Only the girl was limp and unmoving.
"Well...you really have to stop," George said, his brow furrowed. He shook his head slightly, his left hand tightening around his twin's shoulder. "I miss you, Fred. And...I'm sorry," he stated, his voice almost a whisper. He screwed his eyes shut, and his wand pressed against the rotting flesh of his twin as he blasted him with a spell. Barely breathing, he shoved the body out of the way. He grabbed Mara by her arm, mind completely shut off, and went running toward the twinkling lights of Hogsmeade.
"Right behind you, Sarah," Lisa replied. They reached the sweets shop within minutes, and it was fairly crowded inside. The three found space in a corner toward the back, occupied by a few unopened boxes of candy. She wearily collapsed down
xScatterling: onto one and let out a shuddering sigh, her brother sinking onto the floor in silence. "Did all that really happen?" Lisa whispered in disbelief.
Draco opened his eyes, staring up at Lucius in shock as his chest labored to breath. Fred Weasley fell back, into a swarm of rushing unicorns, and more than likely tramped on by the creatures as they stampeded past.
Tom Riddle continued to stare at Pansy, even as she backed a step away. He scowled, jaw briefly clenching, addressing her directly. "You should have told me the truth, Pansy.."
When Colin sent the zombie falling, Dennis was sent flying off the creature's back. He thumped down in the grass, seeking to pick himself back up. His face was flushed, sweat beading an eager young face. "Are we winning, Colin?" The boy smiled, brushing himself off. There was a large snapping crack from above where the brothers stood. Dennis heard it, then looked curiously up. A second or so later, the rampart that was Gryffindor Tower came cratering down into the ground a few feet away from Colin Creevey .. directly over the spot where his brother had been standing. [fin]
'Accio wand' Percy shouted, aiming his wand to where he reasoned the assailant to be. A slender piece of wood flew through the air, landing neatly into his hand. Holding it in both hands, he snapped it. The Crucio spell guttered to a halt.
Zach ran through Hogsmeade, his hands burned and red from him abseiling down Hogwarts. He hoped that Susan was out, but the evactuation was called, so he had to leave.
Hermione bent over, breathing heavily as the curse was lifted from her. "Thanks," she whispered, barely enough breath to even speak. Ron bent over beside her with worry for his best friend. Before them, McGonagall gestured towards the town in the distance, and they moved on again, barely reaching the outskirts of Hogsmeade ..
Pansy fell back another step, her eyes growing wider as she stared at the boy in front of her. "Tom I couldn't tell y- " The loud crack and fall of Gryffindor Tower drew her attention away and she whipped around in time to see the dust settling around a large piece of stone that had once been part of the castle.
Just a foot away, Colin stared at the tower. Silence stretched on and the Gryffindor had not moved an inch. As the dust rose and settled, Colin began to cough, doubled over as he gasped for air. Quickly though, the sound changed from hacking to hysterical laughter. Colin dropped to his knees, rocking back and forth and laughing helplessly, his face pressed into his knees, arms wrapped tightly around his legs.
Sarah collapsed on the ground, trying to catch her breath. She wasn't sure what they were going to do now. "If it didn't, then this is a really bad dream."
Mara watched mutely as George sent his twin falling backwards. She was still shocked when he started pulling her towards Hogsmeade, barely registering when they reached the shop. Once inside she barely made it past the counter before her legs gave out. "George..."
Avery came to a sudden stop at the foot of thehill just as Gryffindor Tower came crashing down upon the ground, making even where the three of them shake under its weight. Wide eyed, the Slytherin looked behind him only to see a large cloud of dust bursting into the air. "Did the whole school just cave in?"
Lucius was recovering from the nosebleed, pinching the bridge of his nose and cursing something under his breath. Shifting a flat stare towards his son, he glanced over Draco to make sure he was alright. "No heroics. Let them be. We stay put here. As the cloud lingered in the air, most of the fighting died and guttered out. Many of the remaining battles buried under stone.
The good and the evil along with it. Only a few remaining fights went through the darkness. Dumbledore's one of them. Hagrid letting out a roar as he saw the tower fall began in a quick run towards it, refusing to believe that there were any students that couldn't be saved.
"I wish it was only a dream," Lisa replied, her eyes shut. She opened her eyes after a moment and looked up, surveying the surrounding students. She turned her gaze onto Sarah after a moment. "Want me to heal those cuts?" she inquired.
George shook his head in reply to Mara. "Not now," he said quietly. He left the door to the new WWW shop open behind him, and opened up the back and side doors. He then went out and stood in the doorframe, and called out to the street. "Come on in! I haven't got much food, but i've got plenty of room for some of you to stay and wait."
Voldemort glanced in the direction of Gryffindor Tower as it collapsed from its own weight, finding some irony in the fall of their beloved tower at a time such as this. He laughed, directing another blast of green at Dumbledore that the old wizard deflected with a shimmering shield of purple. The collision of their spells sent a bolt up into the sky, lancing like lightning as it struck into the cloudless heavens. The Dark Lord took a full step back, watching Dumbledore move to recover himself. The old man was weaker than he remembered. A stray glance made him smirk, as Voldemort's voice carried back to Harry's ears. "Ah. There we are. A promise kept for a promise made."
Out of the Forest, a figure in black came stumbling out, wiping frantically at its face. The initial fear was that they had bitten their tongue off -- until an eyeball had been spit out, which had been altogether unpleasantto the point of nausea. That unsteady balance gave way to a collapse of weak knees, and the man known as Padfoot padded some bit of feet on hands and knees just in time to see a rush of Hogwarts students running past him.
Tom Riddle lowered his wand, looking up in shock as Gryffindor Tower crumbled down on the ground. He flinched against the wave of dust that clouded up, an upraised arm allowing him to recover swiftly as the teen looked back in Pansy's direction. "I need to find someone. If you were smart, you'd go along to Hogsmeade with the rest."
Draco pushed himself up to sit, frowning at Lucius' words to stay put. Battered, the heir of Malfoy could not fathom suffering the slight to his pride as he pushed up to his feet, snapping. "I am not going to hide here like some coward. If this is the battle of all battles, I intend to be there to see it. Are you coming with me, Father, or not?"
Percy ushered Ron and Hermione into WWW, breathing a sigh of relief that they were for the moment, safe.
Zach managed to push his way though to WWW, and began to search for the rest of the Hufflepuffs. It was a difficult task, but he thought he saw everyone there, including Susan.
Seamus had seen Gryffindor Tower fall, and somehow he had made it to Hogsmeade, still dragging Ernie alongside him. How could this have happened? And, more importantly, where was Ginny? He prayed to any deity that would listen that she hadn't been in that tower, or anywhere near it. "C'mon, Ernie," he glanced at his friend. "We have to keep going."
Hermione and Ron tumbled into the shop, holding each other tightly as McGonagall stood in the doorway behind them. "It's .. it's gone," Hermione said softly, leaning into Ron's arm. "Did you see it? It's gone." Her voice was small, like that of an eleven year old girl. "I-I-" Hermione steeled her jaw as tears began to pour down her cheeks, and into the sleeve of Ron's sweater.
Stepping forward, Minerva McGonagall nodded to the elder Weasleys in the shop. "I entrust their care to you," she said crisply, looking around at the faces about her before turning to leave the shop.
"Obviously I'm not if I've fallen in love with you!" Pansy screamed back, turning back to face Tom. Had she known Dennis Creevey had just been killed by the fallen tower, Pansy would not have run after Tom and grabbed the hand in which he was carrying his wand.
Colin fell backward, laying against the and covering his face with his hands. His whole body convulsed with uncontrollable, hysterical laughter. All at once he was abruptly hauled to his feet by Rosalyn, who had arrived at the fallen tower just moments before Hagrid.
She nodded. "If you don't mind. The healers will have enough to deal with then this is all over." Truthfully she had barely noticed the scratches. Most of them had stopped bleeding in the run from Hogwarts. Mara nodded, not really sure what she had been planning to say in the first place. She took a deep breath and staggered out the side door, ushering students off the street and into the building. "Get inside and stay there." she yelled as groups ran past her.
Lucius let an audible groan escape his lips and standing abruptly up, the elder Malfoy cast a hard glare towards Draco. Brushing himself off with his palms, a hand swept up to push his hair back off his face and then he was in motion. "Fine." A few sniffs and with the back of his sleeve, his nose was cleaned before he began to climb the hill back to Hogwarts grounds. When they emerged at the top, Gryffindor Tower littered most of the area around them. Avery took a sharp breath and gaped in awe. Lucius gripped the ebony of his wand, though now there was an odd quiet. The kind of quiet that comes after such a commotion. Only the distant shouts of Voldemort and Dumbledore lingered off in the distance.
Silver eyes watched the students who were unhurt or easily mended helping the others who were not as fortunate. A shadowy figure walked past, cape billowing in his wake as Lucius watched Severus stalking down the path towards Hogwarts, a student slung over his shoulder. Quite an amazing task for the smaller, more youthful version of his friend. Draco found his wrist being captured as Lucius' eyes squinted, then turned in the direction of the end of the battle. "I would follow Severus. It looks like you may have missed the end." He hoped that his son did not hear the challenges being tossed back and forth between the wizards who were apart from them by a wall of dust. Hagrid was busy tossing heavy stones off and away from the rubble, not stopping when Griffen came up behind and tried to convince him to.
Lisa nodded and leveled her wand, carefully healing the cuts on Sarah's face. She foced herself to her feet, her legs numb from the long run. "I'm going to help...heal the students with minor injuries." she stated, before wandering off into the crowd.
George nodded in reply to McGonagall. He shut the door that led to the upper floor, but instructed the students to begin to fill the basement once the first level was full. He made his way over to Mara and called out "Shut the doors, we're full up!" before heading over to find Percy. He eyed his brother for a moment, then said shortly, "Get all the food you can find and distribute it to the students who look like they need it." He began to walk around again, healing the people who were wounded.
Ernie allowed Seamus to drag him along towards Hogsmeade, but his entire body was numb. His mind was cluttered and unfocused, and he really had no idea how he was feeling. He was sure that there were tears still on his face, but he hardly payed notice as he turned towards an empty building and stumbled in. He crashed onto a table, and allowed himself to sit on a chair as he covered his face with his hands and attempted to breath. Hannah was gone, and somehow half of him was now lost. He rubbed the ring on his finger that she had given him for christmas, and glanced up at Seamus. "She's... Circe..." He couldn't even form the proper words, and instead began to grind his teeth in frustration.
Seamus didn't know what to say to Ernie-- he knew that Hannah was dead. So, the blond just put a friendly hand on his shoulder, trying to think of something witty and brilliant and comforting all at the same time. Ernie just nodded, biting his lip and shaking-- from anger? Seamus tugged him up, and they went to the bar.
Slowly the sobs resided as both Hermione and Ron eased into a tired slump on the floor. "We should-" Hermione began, but was quickly silenced by a finger upon her lips. Blinking, she gazed at Ron, but then rested her head into the crook of his arm while ahead of them, the door to WWW closed as Minerva disappeared into the streets of Hogsmeade to find students lost in the town.
"Thank you," Sarah muttered as Lisa walked away. She knew she should be helping the others, but she just couldn't make herself get up. Instead she just huddled in the corner, waiting for someone to tell them it was all over.
Mara ran back inside the shop, shutting the doors behind her before moving to help with the crowd of students. She had to keep herself busy... if only sabledraven: to keep her mind from focusing on what had happened too much.
"Accio food!" Percy commanded, and food whizzed out of the fridge and into his hand. There was a lot of food that hit him, and on any other occasion it would have made everyone laugh. Instead, everyone was somber and exhausted. It was unnerving to see so many adolescents subdued to the degree they were.
Zach looked up as Percy passed him some food and accepted it thoughtlessly. "Thanks...." he called as Percy moved on. He glanced around the room, reassured that everyone that they could have rescued was there..
Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3