Author's Notes: This is my current baby, and I have plans for it to be my first epic. I've never been much of an epic writer, but I think I can handle it. I have at LEAST seven chapters planned out, with more plot after that, so I'm thinking this may end up somewhere around 10-12 chapters. Pairings are mentioned, but will not necessarily come into play until later in the story. In certain cases, MUCH later. The main pairing focus at the moment is Draco/Harry.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Harry Potter or any related characters. If you’re reading this, hopefully you know who does so I won’t have to list them.
Chapter Two: Revelation
-8 months earlier, Hogwarts-
"I wish you wouldn't."
"Talk to Ron and Hermione like that."
Draco Malfoy sighed. "Harry, you know I don't mean what I say."
"They don't know that."
"They're just words."
Harry rolled over to look his lover in the eyes. "Draco..." His hand came up to gently trace the blond's face. "Those words hurt sometimes."
Draco sat up, his eyes narrowed in thought. "Do you three honestly take everything I say so personally?"
"Ron takes everything personally."
Harry sighed, sitting up as well. "Hermione is... a people person. She doesn't like the fact that you hate her for something she has no control over."
A confused expression overtook Draco's features. "She hates me, too."
"Only because you act like such an ass to her and Ron for no reason at all."
Draco smirked. "Oh, so this is a ‘you started it' thing. I understand."
"No, you don't understand at all." Harry turned away from Draco and put his head back down. "I give up."
Draco sat for a moment, thinking. He turned and put his arm around Harry, placing a kiss on his lover's shoulder. "Does it really bother you that much?"
Harry smiled, unseen by Draco. "An apology? From Draco Malfoy?"
"Yes. That doesn't happen very often, does it?"
"No." Harry turned around again to face Draco, letting the blond's arms capture him. "But I'm not the one you should be apologizing to."
"I'm not going to apologize to them now. They'll think I'm insane."
"But you are."
Draco watched as Harry's eyes closed, a smile lingering on his face. "And what about you?"
"What about me?"
"Do you take what I say to you personally?"
Harry laughed. "What do you think?"
"I don't know what you think. You tell me."
Harry's eyes opened again and he looked at Draco with something resembling disbelief on his face. "Do you really not know?"
"How would I know? I can't read you, Harry." Draco drew Harry closer to him, placing a kiss atop his lover's head.
"I don't care what you sat, Draco," Harry said. "I know the real you, and only I get to see it. The mask you have on in front of the school is just that - a mask."
A smile - not a smirk, but a genuine smile - made it's way to Draco's face. "I may not be able to read you, dear Harry, but you can read me like a book. Or a cheap magazine." He paused. After a moment, the smirk made it's way back to Draco's expression. "Or is this just another mask? You pull one off to reveal another? What if this person you are with right now STILL isn't the real me?"
Harry frowned. "Don't say that, Draco. I'd hate to think you're not being honest with me."
"I'm only kidding. Besides," Draco added, his smirk growing more mischievous, "I'm not the only one who puts a mask on during the day, Mr. Potter."
"I know a certain Gryffindor who pretends to be the most sexually illiterate boy in all of Hogwarts who is really into the whole bondage kink, does badly in Potions on purpose because Professor Snape would take even more points away if he did well, and is quite humble about his flying skills when he is one of the best Seekers to ever come to Hogwarts."
Harry was blushing furiously. "I'm NOT into bondage - that was your idea -"
"But you enjoyed it."
"- I don't do badly in Potions on purpose. I AM bad at potions - "
"Oh, come on. You put in three more jelly slugs than necessary the other day. Only Longbottom would do something like that."
"- and I'm not that terrific of a Seeker. I just have a good eye."
"I'm not even going to reply to that."
Harry glared at his lover. "You are..."
"Handsome, sexy, attractive... all of the above?"
"I mean... YES, but you are also -"
"A wonderful lover?"
"Draco, stop it."
"No. This is fun."
"What? Baiting me?"
"Yes. And this is also fun." Draco captured the other boy's lips with his own, silencing both of them.
When they broke apart, Harry gave Draco a smirk of his own. "End the discussion with a kiss. You sure are a terrific conversationalist, Draco Malfoy."
-Malfoy Manor, Present time-
"Are you ready to know?"
Harry closed his eyes. The sight of Voldemort in front of him was sending a tremor of fear through his body. "Probably not, but you'll most likely tell me anyway."
"I will not. I've never told you before."
"We've never exactly had a civil conversation before."
"But we've spoken." Harry opened his eyes. Voldemort was relaxed in the chair across from him, watching Harry through expectant eyes.
"Just tell me. Who were my parents?"
"Who should I begin with?"
"Your mother or your father?"
Harry narrowed his eyes. Voldemort was playing with him - he had to have been. But when he looked at Voldemort, the same look was on his face. Voldemort was serious.
Voldemort nodded, and he sat back in the chair, letting skeletal fingers come together in front of him in a loose clasp. "James Potter... a very common name, like your own. But he was not a common wizard. Your father," he began dramatically, "was a pureblood. Did you know that?"
"No," Harry replied darkly.
"His lineage can be traced back so far that he can even come to some of the original witches and wizards. Back when magic was common, and wizards and Muggles lived side by side. There were a few gaps in the family tree here and there - names lost over the years, or births that were never records, but that's to be expected when you come from a family so old."
"When your father was looking into his family tree, he came across something interesting." Voldemort was smiling now, something that looked terrifying on his twisted face.
Harry made a exasperated gesture, silently telling him to continue.
"James was descended directly from Merlin, one of the greatest wizards of any time."
Harry bit his lip. Merlin. He was descended from Merlin! Which meant....
He knew, in some way, what was coming next.
"And if was descended from Merlin, that meant he was also descended from Godric Gryffindor. Which makes you - " Voldemort pointed at Harry, "- the Heir of Gryffindor."
Harry swallowed. He was the Heir of Gryffindor. He'd heard of it, but he never exactly knew what it meant... although he had an idea.
"This makes you a very powerful young man, Harry." Voldemort smiled. "Your father died protecting you because you were the Heir of Gryffindor."
Harry furrowed his brow in thought. "Wasn't he also an Heir?"
"The prophecy states that the four true Heirs - not descendants - were born at the same time - 1980. Your father knew this, and so did I."
"You killed him because of that?" Harry couldn't hardly believe he was having this conversation. Voldemort was casually speaking of his father's death as if he was drinking a good cup of coffee.
"I killed him to get to you. I went out to kill the heirs. I killed the Heir of Hufflepuff and the Heir of Ravenclaw."
"What about Slytherin? You wouldn't kill that one, too, would you?"
"I'll speak of that Heir eventually."
Harry looked away, not positive he could handle this next question. "What about my mother?"
"Lily Evans. Remarkable young lady. You look so much like your father, but you have your mother's eyes."
"So I've been told."
"I didn't want to kill your mother. She was a girl to be admired."
Not Harry! Please, not Harry!!
Stand aside, girl...
"Your mother was my daughter."
Harry blinked, but showed no reaction. "No, she wasn't," he said calmly. "My mother was Muggle born. I live with the Dursley's. Aunt Petunia was her sister." Such a statement could never be true. His mother had been a loving, caring, person. She was Muggle born...
Voldemort smiled that horrible smile again, and something unreadable was in his eyes. "I'm going to tell you a story, Harry."
Harry still did not look at Voldemort. "So tell me."
"Several years ago, before I became as powerful as I am today, I fell in love with a young lady from Gryffindor. Completely unexpected, but it couldn't be helped. Love is a weakness, but it is a very powerful thing."
"What's your point?"
"I think you know what happened between us, considering it was quite similar to your relationship with the young Malfoy boy -"
Harry sat up with a sharp gasp, shocked. "How do you know about that?"
Voldemort smirked at the boy in front of him. "Word spreads quickly on this side. Do not worry about that now. That is not what we're discussing."
Harry still stared in horror, but dared to sit back in the chair once more. ~Draco...~
"This young lady ended up pregnant at the end of our seventh year at Hogwarts. It didn't begin to show until a few months after we had all graduated, and by then I had decided to seek the power I deserved.
"She didn't appreciate that power, and she left, taking our unborn child with her." He paused, seemingly lost in memory for a moment. "I found out later that she had died in childbirth, and our daugher, Lily, was given to a Muggle family to hide her from me. The Evans family."
Harry swallowed harshly. Voldemort couldn't be telling him this, he couldn't... it was impossible.
"I am your Grandfather, Harry."
The redhead turned, his eyes looking through the trees and bushes of the garden, looking for the owner of that voice. "Harry? Where are you?"
Ron looked up and saw Harry sitting in the tree beside him. He laughed as Harry grinned and began climbing down the branches. "Sorry. Your voice carried."
"Since when can Harry throw his voice?" Hermione walked up to the two boys, carrying a basket. She was smiling, and her eyes mirrored that smile.
"Since now. Let's eat." The three Gryffindors sat down and Hermione passed around the contents of the picnic basket. It contained wonderful Muggle foods that Harry and Hermione had told Ron about - hot dogs, hamburgers, potato chips... and if he remembered right, they were also quite fattening. None of them seemed to care. Somehow, the hot dogs were warm, and Ron piled ounces of toppings of it as if it were an art.
"All you need is a cherry, and it'd be a Sunday, Ron," Hermione said, giggling.
"How would a cherry make today be a Sunday? Today's Friday." Ron said, confused.
"Never mind, Ron," Harry said. "Pass the ketchup."
The three sat eating and talking for hours. Hermione pointed out the different kinds of flowers that were scattered around the garden, commenting on their origin. Some of the flowers never grew in Britain, and some, Hermione commented casually, were extinct, but Ron didn't care. The garden was beautiful, he was with his two best friends in the world, and all three of them were young and happy.
"Oh, look, Harry! A garden snake!" Hermione pointed at the small snake that was slithering towards them. "See if you can talk to it!"
Ron expected Harry to look annoyed at such a demand. He usually hated having anything to do with snakes since they reminded him of Slytherin, You-Know-Who, and nearly everything Harry hated. But Harry didn't look a bit annoyed. Instead, he turned to the snake and hissed at it. A shiver ran down Ron's spine despite the warmth of the day. Harry sounded positively evil when he was speaking Parseltongue.
The snake twisted, it's head and neck - not that snakes really had necks, they were mostly just a head and body, right? - rising to see Harry better. The snake's tongue flicked out of it's mouth, and a quiet hiss was heard. The snake turned to leave, but Ron could swear that it paused to look at him. The snake hissed one more time, and then left.
"What did it say, Harry?" Ron demanded.
Harry looked at Ron, smiling. "Makes perfect sense, really."
"‘Accept him, welcome him, when he comes.' That's what it said."
"What does that mean?" Ron said, confused. He looked from Harry to Hermione, expecting their expressions to mirror his own, but both were looking at Ron in expectation.
"Ron, you should do that," Harry said, standing and reaching his arms up to the sky. "I'm tired. I need to leave you two now. Take care of yourselves!" Harry turned and began walking. As he walked farther away, his form seemed to get smaller and smaller too quickly for the speed he was walking, and Harry disappeared within seconds.
"Harry!!" Ron shouted, taking a step in the direction Harry had disappeared. That area was now rapidly getting dark. He felt a tug on his arm.
"Ron, come on," Hermione said, trying to guide Ron in her direction. "We have to go welcome him."
"I don't understand."
"And I don't expect you to."
Ron turned to look in the direction Harry had gone once more...
-Ministry of Magic-
Ron sat up, gasping for breath. "Harry!!"
"Ron, it's okay," Hermione said. "It was just a nightmare."
The redhead looked at the witch sitting beside his bed. "But it wasn't a nightmare. It was just a dream, but Harry left in the end." Ron closed his eyes. "He left." He put his head in his hands, hiding his wet eyes from Hermione.
"No." Harry refused to believe it. "I'm not related to you in any way. The only reason I am like you whatsoever is because some of your powers were transferred to me when you tried to kill me."
"Is that what that old fool, Dumbledore, told you? Do you believe everything he says?"
Harry was shaking his head as Voldemort spoke. "I don't believe you."
"You know it's true, Harry. You are my flesh and blood." Voldemort narrowed his eyes. "You have my blood running in your veins. You have Salazar Slytherin's blood running through your veins."
Harry closed his eyes, not wanting to hear anything else Voldemort said.
"You are the Heir of Slytherin."
"How could I be both?!" Harry shouted, standing up in a flurry. "You just said I was the Heir of Gryffindor!! How could I be the Heir of both houses?" As he was standing, the weakness started coming back into his legs quickly, and he began to pitch forward. He was caught before he landed on the floor.
"Sit back down, Harry. We are not finished talking." Voldemort had caught him. Harry didn't understand, and he didn't even notice that Voldemort was touching him for a moment. Harry pushed himself away and back into the chair, his skin crawling where Voldemort's hands had touched him.
"You have the power of both houses within you, Harry. I knew that, and Dumbledore knew that. Your parents didn't. Your father thought I was after you because you were the Heir of Gryffindor, and your mother thought I was after you because you were the Heir of Slytherin. I needed you dead because you are the Heir of both."
Harry sat. This was too much information at once. Perhaps he hadn't been ready to know - he certainly wasn't handling it very well. Of course, he couldn't picture himself being able to handle it ever... no matter how old he was. Perhaps if he hadn't been told everything at once...
Too late now.
"Your power is not just from any two founders, but the two most powerful of the four. I wanted to stop that power before it was awakened, but I realize that it could be very helpful."
Harry looked at Voldemort through unseeing eyes. "What?"
Voldemort didn't repeat what he had said. Instead, he smiled again. "I have one more thing to tell you, Harry."
~No more. I can't handle any more revelations,~ Harry thought desperately.
"One more thing. It's not necessary for you to know, but it may be of interest to you."
Draco was waiting in the bedroom where Harry was to be staying. ~At least they had decided to make him comfortable,~ Draco thought, taking a seat in the corner. ~At least he's not living in one of the cells in the basement.~
Draco was to wait in the room until Harry was returned. The blond had no idea where Harry was at the moment, although he had a few ideas. He prayed that none of them were true, and that what it really was wasn't as bad as the things Draco knew the Death Eaters were capable of.
He was going to see Harry again. It had been five months.
Underneath all of Draco's worries, that thought had been running continuously. It made him feel strangely comforted that he was going to see the only person in the world he trusted within the next few hours, and he would be spending time with him.
However, Draco didn't like what he was being ordered to do.
"Tell him that you love him, and make sure that he knows you'll only care for him if he's with us."
Even if it were true, Harry would never join the Death Eaters. Draco meant a lot to Harry - which Draco knew - but Draco wasn't worth changing his alliance. Harry was better than that.
Draco had a plan. It was risky, but he had to get Harry out of this place. Harry didn't belong anywhere near the Death Eaters, near Voldemort, near HIM. Harry didn't belong with Draco.
Harry was a true-blue Gryffindor, and he didn't belong with a Slytherin.
Draco had asked that their conversations not be listened in on. He had said he ‘wouldn't feel comfortable enough confessing his love to Potter with his father watching.' He had told his father so with a very sarcastic tone, but it had worked - all their conversations would be private.
The door slammed open, and two Death Eaters were holding Harry by the arms. Harry didn't look as if he could walk. They looked at Draco.
"Where do you want him?"
Draco watched Harry for a moment, then closed his eyes. Harry hadn't looked at him. "Put him on the bed. Then leave."
The two holding him - one was Crabbe's father, Draco noticed - were being gentle as they helped Harry to the bed. They sat him down, looked at Draco, and left the room.
Harry still hadn't looked at Draco. "Harry?" Draco asked uncertainly. His lover didn't respond, continuing to stare into space. The blond walked up to Harry, kneeling in front of him.
Looking into Harry's eyes, Draco saw a stranger. Harry didn't recognize who was in front of him. It didn't even look as if Harry recognized that there was someone in front of him in the first place. "What did they do to you, love?" Draco whispered, stroking Harry's face with the back of his hand.
Finally, Harry moved. He looked back into Draco's eyes, taking in a deep breath. He studied the grey eyes that were watching him carefully. "Draco?" Harry's voice cracked, but he smiled. "I've missed you so much..." Harry's eyes shut. Draco caught his lover in his arms as he passed out.
If we wait, if we leave, if we love...
I know I said that this chapter would be called "Torture." Slight change of plans, and I decided "Revelation" would be more appropriate.
A few side notes: This is my actual theory of why Voldemort wanted Harry dead. I've thought about it for long periods of time, and this is what I came up with. I DO think Voldemort is related to Harry in some way.
A note about Merlin: I know the time periods are slightly messed up with using Merlin. If I'm estimating correctly, Merlin would exist after the four founders. However, I never mentioned which wizard was born first. Also, it's been a while since I've read the third or fourth HP books, and I think there was a reference to Merlin in one of them. Or I'm dreaming. *shrug* Oh, well.
I may have one more chapter out before I go back to school. We'll see.
Chapter Three: Breaking
Ron tells Sirius and Hermione of Harry and Draco's relationship, Draco tell Harry of his plans for their escape, Sirius and Remus reminisce, and Voldemort reveals his plans for Harry and Draco.
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