Author: Beren (aka Tasha)
Disclaimer: This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoast Books, and Warner Bros., Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.
Warnings: This story is canon compliant until the end of Order of the Phoenix and then goes AU. None of the HBP or Deathly Hallows plot will be used, or the Horcruxes for that matter since this story was planned before we knew the details about those things, and hence has it's own fanon. This includes birthdays and other information that have since been revealed on Pottermore and in further productions.
Summary: The threat of open war in on the horizon. The Order and the Ministry are of one accord and both know that where Harry Potter is, Voldemort will eventually be. Preparations are being made and this time the side of the light will not be caught unawares.
Summer classes, sabotage, revelations about Draco's father, teaching and the final showdown with Voldemort all await Harry and Draco in this exciting sequel to Gold Tinted Spectacles (LJ | AO3 | Wattpad).
Author's Notes: This is the second story in the Hecatemae universe. It starts up just after the end of the first instalment and I advice reading that one first so you understand the premise. Thanks go to my sister Sophie for the beta reading.
It has taken me 12 years to finally get around to finishing this, I very much hope everyone enjoys it.
Link to other parts: LJ | DW | AO3 | Wattpad
New chapters will be posted every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
The weekend had been good. After the Hogsmead trip things seemed to have relaxed about the castle. The Gryffindors weren't hanging out with the Slytherins all the time or anything, but the tension had eased. Harry had even spotted Pansy and Hermione nodding to each other at breakfast on Monday morning.
The seventh year's first class was in the Great Hall, so, once breakfast was done, they all just hung around. The tables and benches moved themselves to the side as soon as they were clean, which left them all with wide open space.
Luckily for general harmony and to stop Seamus doing anything stupid because he had too much time on his hands, it wasn't long before a strange man walked into the room through the teachers' door.
"Good morning," he greeted with a smile.
The man had a confident stride, the air of someone used to being in control and was wearing a long leather coat.
[Auror,] Draco said inside Harry head.
[Yeah,] Harry agreed.
"My name is Auror Fitzsimons," the man introduced himself, "and I hope we are all going to be very good friends."
[Hmm, we'll see,] was Draco's dry comment about that.
Harry decided to keep a less paranoid open mind on the subject, after all he was sure Dumbledore would have vetted everyone he was letting into Hogwarts.
[I know what you're thinking,] Draco said, without his so much as saying anything, [and I have two words for you: Madeye Moody.]
Harry had to give his soulmate that one.
"I am an instructor at the Auror academy," Fitzsimons went on, "and I have been asked by Headmaster Dumbledore to teach you all about wandless defence."
Now Harry was really interested. This wasn't what he had expected from the summer lessons, but it did make a kind of sense.
"Can anyone tell me what I'm talking about?" Fitzsimons asked.
Of course Hermione put up her hand. Harry took it as a good sign that the man nodded at her and didn't just ignore such an enthusiastic student.
"Miss Granger," Fitzsimons invited.
[He has done his homework,] Draco observed.
"Wandless defence is the use of magic to repel an enemy during battle when a wand is not available. It uses raw magic from a magical person's core," Hermione said.
"Thank you, Miss Granger, you are perfectly correct," Fitzsimons said with another smile. "Now I am sure some of you think you will never lose your wand, but trust me, it happens all the time. This method of defence is taught to all new Aurors and has saved many lives. We at the Ministry hope none of you will ever have to use it, but it will be a very valuable tool to have under your belts."
Harry could only agree with that.
[He seems to have his head screwed on,] he commented to Draco.
[He smiles too much,] was what Draco replied.
[Albus smiles a lot too,] Harry pointed out.
[But he's batty.]
"Mr Potter," Fitzsimons said and surprised Harry out of the mental conversation he was having with Draco, "if you wouldn't mind coming up here I would like you to assist me with a little demonstration to start."
Harry was not sure he liked the sound of this idea, but no valid excuse jumped to mind. He really wanted to learn something in this class and, since he had intimate experience with pissed off teachers, with a worried glance at Draco, he made his way to the front of the hall.
"I believe you have some experience with this form of defence," the Auror said reasonably.
It appeared the tutors had been given significant information of their students, so Harry saw no point in denying the truth.
"Yes, I've been trying to get the hang of it since Easter."
"Any luck?" Fitzsimons asked conversationally.
"A little," Harry admitted.
Wandless magic was difficult, wandless defence was even more difficult, especially when it came to control. Harry and Draco had both had a lot of practice, but that did not mean that either of them was proficient.
"Would you mind showing us some of what you have learned?" Fitzsimons asked with yet another smile and then waved his wand at the surrounding area before Harry could reply.
Wards similar to those Hilde used when training Harry sprung into life around him and Fitzsimons. He could feel the hum of the magic in them, but something didn't seem quite right. He glanced at Draco, biting his lip, not at all comfortable with the situation.
[Something's wrong,] he told his soulmate silently.
[Then tell the idiot to stop,] Draco replied.
"Well?" the Auror asked when Harry didn't reply straight away.
Refusing outright seemed a little harsh, and he did not want to end up on the bad side of the instructor on the first day. He hoped that a veteran Auror could give him some pointers on how to control wandless defence that maybe they and Hilde had missed.
"Just a second," he said and lowered his shields to where he could see the wards.
He knew what was wrong as soon as he saw the glistening magic, but before he could express an opinion the Auror in front of him reached out and grabbed both his wrists. Harry knew he had the bad habit of lowering all his barriers when he wanted to see or feel something, and that was just what he'd done to look at the wards. Fitzsimons' nervousness at taking the class and excitement at teaching flooded into him at the same time. It took his breath away.
His control was good enough now that the connection did not shatter his barriers, but it was not the most pleasant of experiences.
"Please let go," Harry said as reasonably as he could manage.
Draco was standing just outside the wards, his mouth a tight line.
"Make me," the Auror said as if this was a game and Harry reasoned that, from the balding man's point of view, it probably was.
"No," he replied, quite certain that he did not want to do this.
With an effort of will he managed to force his mental shields back into place fully, but he had been too close to Fitzsimons' mind. He could still sense the man's emotions faintly.
"Don't think you can take me?" the Auror asked in what was a ridiculous challenge.
The only thing Harry could think to do was explain his reaction; he did not believe his opponent would back down otherwise. The man seemed to know enough to realise that his present action was uncomfortable for Harry, but he did not appear to know he was stepping over the line.
"The wards won't hold," Harry said as plainly as he knew how.
The way Fitzsimons' expression changed instantly, Harry was all too aware it was the wrong thing to say. The Auror's mood went from goading to annoyed in a heartbeat. Harry was reminded depressingly of Snape.
"Not impressed with my wards, Mr Potter?" were the words that came out of Fitzsimons' mouth and the way he stressed 'my' did not fill Harry with confidence. "I created the spell myself specifically for teaching this discipline."
For a moment Harry didn't know what to say: this was suddenly becoming personal.
"Look," he said going for brutal honesty, "my control is crap, I use too much power. Your wards will not hold if I throw you against them."
The irrational glint in Fitzsimons' eye reminded Harry even more of Snape.
"They've held for every class I've taken for six years, Mr Potter," the man said pointedly. "I've had the best in my class and not one person has broken them yet."
"They won't hold," Harry insisted praying that the man would see sense.
"Just do it, Potter," the Auror said bluntly.
"No," he replied, very firm in his decision.
Then he felt it; emotion coming from his opponent directly at him. There was some anger along with some indignation and it was deliberate.
"Stop that," Harry said shortly and tried to pull his arms away.
"Make me," Fitzsimons shot back, holding on tightly.
"Don't project at me," he insisted.
In the back of his mind Harry could feel Draco's annoyance and protectiveness growing, but he did not have time to figure out what his soulmate would do to the Auror if he had the chance.
"You can stop me, Potter," Fitzsimons replied and another wave of directed emotion hit him. "If you don't like it, break the contact."
Harry felt himself reacting to the projections, his own feelings rising at the input from outside. This was an incredibly bad situation. He knew that his control was bad at the best of times, but there was no telling what he might do being goaded into action by a stressed out Auror.
"Don't do that," he said sternly.
No reply this time just another wave of emotion.
"Leave him alone," Draco sounded very, very unhappy and Harry could feel Draco trying to shield him from his reaction so as not to make the situation worse.
Another projection at his shields and that was it. The situation pushed Harry's besieged Hecatemus abilities too far.
"I said, don't do that!" Harry yelled.
He pulled his arms away while the defensive blast of magic that rose with the yell pushed Fitzsimons in the opposite direction.
In sick realisation of what he had just done Harry watched the Auror lift off the ground with a startled grunt and sail through the air towards the wards. For just a microsecond he thought he might have been wrong and this would simply end with him apologising for underestimating Fitzsimons. Then reality bit and the man flew straight through the barrier, causing it to fall. The Auror didn't stop until he hit the side wall with a loud bang and a sickening crunch that made Harry wince.
All Harry could do was stare as the balding man slid towards the floor and collapsed in an unconscious heap. The healer on hand for just such accidents ran over and Draco walked up beside his lover.
[You did warn him,] Draco said, his annoyance at the downed Auror now all too obvious, [so this is all his fault, are we clear?]
[But...] Harry couldn't help himself.
[No buts,] Draco told him in no uncertain terms, [all his fault.]
[Okay,] Harry agreed reluctantly.
"Nice shot, Harry," came from Dean's direction.
* * *
It was a good twenty minutes before Fitzsimons was carted away to the hospital wing. As far as Harry could tell, from there the man was being taken straight to St Mungo's, which left the class without a teacher and wandless defence off the summer curriculum until another was found. He suspected if he and Fitzsimons were ever in the same room again Draco would end the man.
If he blamed himself he knew Draco would have words with him, but he couldn't help it. If he had controlled himself better it wouldn't have happened.
[Still not your fault,] Draco told him.
"Stop blaming yourself," Hermione said at almost the same time.
Clearly he was being obvious.
"But I just ruined the first summer class we're supposed to have," he said, since there appeared to be no point in denying what was going through his head.
"No, that incompetent ruined it," Hermione said. "He deserves every broken bone and I almost wish he had to heal the Muggle way."
Apparently Hermione could be vindictive.
"The moron will be fine by tomorrow," Draco added and Harry did his very best to banish the guilt.
He was sure the conversation would have continued, but a very familiar figure walked through the hall doors.
[Hilde's here,] he told Draco, somewhat surprised.
The woman in question appeared a little shocked as Fitzsimons was carried out of the room past where she was standing. It was not long before she looked up, scanned the room and met Harry's eyes, and an even shorter time after that before she was making her way towards him.
"My, Harry," she said with a tone somewhere between confused and amused, "what did you do to the poor man?"
His first thought was how had she known it was him, but he never had a chance to voice the question.
"That 'poor man'," Draco replied, "decided that grabbing Harry and projecting at him to make him demonstrate what he knew was a good idea, even after Harry told him his barrier ward would not hold. He deserved everything he got."
Harry put a hand on his soulmate's arm in a comforting gesture. Draco was still very annoyed, and as with all things concerning Harry's safety, Draco was completely unforgiving of any who would go against him.
"Quite so," Hilde agreed, much to Harry's surprise. "And here I was hoping to see a qualified Ministry trainer at work, and the man turns out to be an idiot."
That gained her a smile from Draco, and Hilde seemed to appreciate the gesture even if, in his current mood, it made Draco appear rather more manic than friendly.
"That's what I just said," Hermione agreed, "and excuse me, but I think Ron might be picking a fight with a Hufflepuff."
Harry could only assume it was about Quidditch, which provided a momentary distraction from everything else going through his head, but it didn't last.
"I could have killed him," Harry said, still feeling incredibly guilty, "I shouldn't have lost control."
Hilde and Draco shared a looked and for a moment he felt as if he was the one on the outside of a bond.
"I thought we settled this," his soulmate said, looking him straight in the eye and pursing his lips. "If the man hadn't been such a moron nothing would have happened to him."
Hilde was nodding.
"Touching a Hecatemus without his permission is asking for trouble," the woman said in agreement; "grabbing him and then projecting at him is plain suicide. You have to protect yourself, Harry. What Fitzsimons did is technically criminal; it was assault."
Harry frowned. He had never looked at the situation from that angle, but it just seemed so silly.
"He was just thinking at me," he said.
"Which could have damaged your shields and caused you, your soulmate and those around you significant harm," Hilde said. "What you seem to forget, Harry, is that you are extraordinary. The last Hecatema to be assaulted in such a manner destroyed the whole room she was in, and she had been trained since childhood. There are laws for a reason and that man broke several of them."
"Told you," Draco said, crossing his arms to make his point. [Now what do we say in situations like this?]
That made Harry smile, even if only slightly.
[Draco knows best, always listen to Draco,] he replied dutifully.
He was rewarded for his response by his soulmate moving in closer and giving him a quick kiss.
[And don't ever forget it, you obstinate Gryffindor,] Draco told him.
For just a moment the rest of the world did not exist as Harry looked into his soulmate's eyes. It was times like this when he knew why he loved Draco so much.
Of course they had other things to think about at the moment.
This entry was originally posted at http://beren-writes.dreamwidth.org/371848.html.