Chapter Nineteen
I Have Not Yet Begun to Fight

Harry was scared – really truly scared.

Hermione was on the bed in her and Ron’s bedroom, her face twisted in agony as another contraction came. Draco was beside her, one hand holding hers, the other on her sweaty forehead.

Harry was by the fireplace, trying to get a hold of Ron, who naturally seemed to have disappeared. A midwife from St. Mungo’s would also be arriving in a few moments; she said she only had to collect her equipment before Flooing to the Weasley Castle.

“Aargh,” Hermione screamed as a contraction wracked through her body. “Where exactly is that midwife with my pain relievers?” she asked through gritted teeth.

“She’s coming,” Harry replied.

“And where is the idiotic boy who did this to me?”

“Ron should be here soon,” said Harry, turning back to the fireplace where he could see Ron’s empty office. “Ron!” he yelled, hoping that the redhead would hear him, wherever he was. He wondered how in the world his best friend had missed the wards going off.


“Um, Harry, these contractions are coming closer and closer,” Draco said with a worried face. “Maybe we should – I don’t know – do something?”

Harry gave a final, hard look at the fireplace then terminated the connection before running to Hermione’s side again.

“Okay,” he said. “You do know I don’t know anything about childbirth, right, ‘Mione?”

“Just get these babies – argh! – out of me,” Hermione shouted in his ear.

“Um, right,” Harry mumbled, going half-deaf from the shouting.

Just then, a soft ‘pop’ was heard and the midwife from St. Mungo’s came out of the fireplace. Harry and Draco both breathed a sigh of relief as she took over. She helped Hermione stand and remove her underwear and then walk around in the room for a bit, before the contractions came even closer. She also gave Hermione a potion to drink, which would reduce the pain. Then, when Hermione found that she could no longer walk around, she lay down on the bed, all the while muttering about her husband, who was nowhere to be seen.

The contractions were coming closer and closer – and Hermione was getting closer and closer to hysterics. She screamed at the midwife that she was not going to give birth to her children when her husband wasn’t there.

“Ron!” Harry screamed into the fire, having set the connection up again. Draco was still by Hermione’s side. He wasn’t saying much, only following the midwife’s instructions, his face even paler than normal.

“Harry? What’s up?” Ron asked, his voice cheery.

“Where the bloody hell have you been?” Harry swore. “Get over here now – Hermione is about to give birth to your twins!”

Ron paled and his eyes widened impossibly. Less than five seconds later, he came crashing out of the fire. He ran to Hermione’s side, and took her hand, barely stopping to get the soot off his robes.

“How is she doing?” he asked the midwife.

“She’s in the last stages – she’s going to have to push in less than a minute,” the midwife said.

What followed had to be one of the strangest, most memorable but at the same time scariest moments of Harry’s life. Hermione screamed with each contraction and pushed with everything she had. Draco sat behind her, his hands on each side of her face and Harry and Ron sat on each side of her.

A child was actually being delivered to the world, Harry thought with fascination. He was seeing a life begin.

“You have a girl,” the midwife announced happily and Ron beamed at Hermione.

“You are so good, Hermione,” he said to her, kissing her forehead lovingly. “She’s absolutely beautiful.”

The tiny baby took several gulps of air, before it began wailing loudly. The midwife motioned for Harry to come and take the baby and wrap it in one of the towels that lay on the table beside the bed. With shaking hands, Harry took the newborn child in his hands.

The girl had the same flaming red hair as the rest of the Weasleys had. Her face was covered in blood and other liquids, and she was still screaming. It sounded so small, yet at the same time so very loud, for such a little being. She had ten tiny fingers and ten tiny toes, Harry counted, and she looked perfectly healthy to him. He placed her in a red towel and dried her off with the wipes that had also been placed on the table by the midwife.

Behind him he heard, “And a boy!”

He turned to see Ron’s huge grin, and he thought that it was lucky the redhead had ears – otherwise the smile would reach all the way around.

The midwife handed the boy to his father and Ron took the baby in his arms. His face was a mixture of incredible pride and nervousness. He handled the boy like he was made of porcelain, walking over to where Harry was holding his baby girl.

“They’re beautiful…” he breathed, his eyes wide.

Harry nodded, “They really are.”

He walked back to Hermione with the little girl. The midwife was helping her push the placenta out and as soon as she was done, Harry placed her baby girl on her chest. The small one found its way to Hermione’s breast and began sucking milk greedily. Hermione looked a bit startled as the baby began, but then she just smiled softly at her child.

Ron brought over their boy and sat down next to Hermione.

Harry took Draco by the hand and they left the room, knowing that the family needed time for themselves. The midwife left them as soon as she had checked both the babies and their mother.

“That was… incredible…” Harry said, his mind still not completely coherent after what they’d just seen and been through. He sat down on the couch in the castle’s living room and pulled Draco with him down.

“Definitely one of the amazing things so far,” Draco agreed.

Then they sat in silence, revelling in the miracle they’d just witnessed.

During the following few days, Draco and Harry spent several hours each day at the Weasley Castle, getting to know the newborn twins. Hermione and Ron had yet to find names for them, so for now, they were just ‘baby girl’ and ‘baby boy’. Draco suggested that they’d name them that. Hermione was not amused.

The energy Draco had given Hermione during labour had, however, rendered him even weaker. Another hallucination had followed, when they were at home, and Harry was getting worried about the frequency with which they were coming. This time, it had been almost an hour before Draco was back to his normal self completely. Harry couldn’t help but wonder if the hallucinations weren’t taking Draco with them, little by little, away from Harry and into insanity.

Draco was no longer allowed to train with Mr Hanawalt. Harry refused to let him touch a gun; neither knew when the next hallucination would hit. It was bad enough that he had his wand still – a gun could and would be lethal if Draco suddenly began to imagine things. Draco would still come with Harry when he trained, though, for he didn’t want to be left alone any longer. Draco was scared of the hallucinations and what they did to him.

When they were at the Weasley Castle, Draco would lay down with the babies on a big blanket on the floor and he would watch them sleep there. They were too small to really play with; the only thing they did was eat, sleep and make a mess. Harry refused to clean that mess. Instead he opted to sit on the couch and watch the twins and Draco sleep on the floor, for Draco always fell asleep as well. Harry would never leave Draco alone with the twins, in case of a hallucination.

One evening, when the twins were a little over a week old, Harry was doing just this – he was sitting on the couch, with Ron and Hermione on the other couch and they talked quietly between themselves, watching the babies and Draco on the floor. Hermione had the book Harry gave her for Christmas in her lap – “Practical spells and potions when you have small children in the house” by Linala LePuzzle. Draco was fast asleep and had been so for at least an hour.

“Decided on what to call them yet?” Harry asked.

Hermione looked up from her book. “We have, actually,” she said.

“Well?” Harry asked expectantly when she didn’t continue.

She looked at Ron and he said, “We’re naming her Ariel and him Leo.”

Harry looked at the babies thoughtfully. “She looks like an Ariel,” he said. “And he definitely looks like a Leo.” He smiled at them.

“So we have your approval?” Hermione asked.

“Definitely.” Then he stretched and said with a yawn, “We should be going home, I think.”

Hermione smiled at him and picked up her daughter from the floor. Ariel made a small sound, before she settled in into her mother’s arms. Harry still hadn’t become used to how natural it looked for Hermione to hold a baby in her arms.

“I need to put these two to bed too,” she said, bending down to give Harry a kiss on the cheek. “So I’ll see you – when? Tomorrow?”

“I think we’re coming for a little while then too. Draco is getting very attached to your children,” Harry smiled.

“So I’ve noticed,” Hermione said, her voice soft. “You are free to come over as much as you want.”

Harry smiled at her and stood up. “Good night, Hermione.”

Ron stood and picked his baby boy up from the blanket as well. He still looked a bit awkward with Leo in his arms; not as much of a natural as Hermione, yet it was still a cute picture with the two flaming redheads. Harry smiled at him.

“Good night, Ron,” he said.

“See you tomorrow.”

Harry nodded, and watched Ron leave the same way Hermione had. He was left with Draco on the floor, still deep asleep.

Harry touched his shoulder, shaking him lightly. “Draco?” he said softly. “Draco, wake up.”

Suddenly, the blonde on the floor moaned and Harry became aware of a slicing pain going through him. He bent to his knees, the pain growing stronger every second.

A vision, he knew. Draco was having a vision.

“Draco!” Harry said through gritted teeth. “Draco wake up!”

The blonde began to writher back and forth on the floor as the pain assaulted him. He grabbed Harry’s shirt and yanked him down with surprising strength, all the while crying. His breathing became ragged, shaking.

“Don’t kill him… please…” he mumbled, clinging closer to the Boy Who Lived.

“No!” he suddenly screamed, his tone heartbreaking and Harry wanted nothing but to comfort, yet he had no idea of how. The pain surged through him and hot white flashes passed through his mind.


Draco hid his face in Harry’s shirt, his body shaking, spasms shooting through him. He cried and screamed, and pulled and pushed at Harry, seeming to want to both leave and come closer at once.

…Albus Dumbledore…

Another flash through Harry’s mind and he saw the Headmaster’s body, covered in mud and blood. He let out a scream of his own at the sight of his mentor, lying dead on the ground.

He felt a cloth pressed to his face, but it did nothing to relieve the pain. He gripped Draco tighter, feeling the blonde’s body arch as the vision sent another jolt of pain.

…Death Eaters… and dead bodies, sprayed on the ground…

He screamed again and then his mind did the only thing it could do – it shut down.

His head felt heavy and his body as though it was on fire, despite the cool wet cloth on his forehead. Harry groaned as he woke up and tried to move. A hand held him still.

“Don’t move, you need to rest,” Hermione said to him softly. “And you’ll wake Draco up – he needs to rest even more than you do.”

Harry opened his eyes to look at her. Draco was curled up at his side, clinging desperately to him. On his cheeks were traces of dried tears.

“You’ve been out for hours,” Hermione said. “It’s two in the morning.”

“Sorry to keep you awake,” Harry said and then continued without waiting for an answer, “I need to speak with Dumbledore as soon as possible.”

“Shouldn’t you wait until Draco is awake?” Hermione asked.

Harry shook his head. “Get him here, please. This is too important. If Draco doesn’t wake up by himself, I’ll give him a wake-me-up potion.”

Hermione nodded and called for Ron. He appeared in the room a moment later, mighty relieved that Harry was awake again and then walked off as soon as his wife had given him the instructions on getting the Headmaster.

“It was that bad, huh?” Hermione said with a pained expression. “I thought you would never stop screaming…”

She trailed off, continuing to bathe Draco’s forehead with the cool cloth. He didn’t stir, didn’t move at all. He just lay there, his breathing heavy and ragged and Harry couldn’t tell whether he was sleeping or unconscious. He could have been going in and out of unconsciousness for all that he and Hermione knew. All that Harry was certain of was that Draco was not in pain any longer – he would have felt it otherwise.

Less than ten minutes later, Albus Dumbledore entered Harry and Draco’s room.

“I hear Mr Malfoy had another vision,” he said gravely, sitting down on a chair next to Hermione. Ron opted to stay standing at the end of the bed.

“He did,” Harry said. “It was one of the worst ever. I know you probably want to hear what he has to say, but I’ll tell you the little I saw before I wake him up.”

Dumbledore nodded, “Very well. The parts of the visions that you receive have often been the most important bits. Go on.”

Harry nodded. “The first thing I saw was Hogwarts. I don’t know what was wrong with it, but there was something. Then… the next thing I saw – we saw…” Harry broke off, as the picture of Dumbledore’s dead body on the ground came back to haunt him.


“It was you, sir. The Death Eaters had killed you,” he said, his voice shaky.

If the Headmaster felt anything about the news, he didn’t show it. He sat in silence, contemplating Harry’s words, his expression never changing.

“Did you see anything else?” he asked after almost a minute of silence.

“Several others, dead, Professor,” Harry said quietly. “Dead bodies, on the ground, with Death Eaters walking around there.”

“Do you know who it was?” Dumbledore asked.

Harry shook his head, but a soft, slightly muffled voice came from Draco’s still form.

“There were too many to name,” Draco said. “But amongst them were several Weasleys, Rubeus Hagrid, Neville Longbottom, Severus Snape… All dead. The Death Eaters had taken over Hogwarts, making it their new headquarters and they were killing anyone and anything alive that wasn’t on their side. So, to add to that list, I would assume that the rest of the teaching staff and any student left at the school would be… dead.”

He stopped talking and the room fell completely silent.

Draco gave a short, forced laugh. “I’m sorry I can never bring anything but bad news, Professor.”

Harry squeezed his eyes shut at the words and held Draco closer. The blonde hadn’t moved since he woke up, only turned his head slightly so that the people in the room could hear what he was saying. Through their Heart Bind or perhaps with his Healing Powers, Harry felt how drained Draco was. There was no energy left in him to pick himself up and change his position.

Dumbledore didn’t reply to Draco’s sarcastic comment; he sat still in his chair, looking very thoughtful. Finally, he turned to Ron.

“Mr Weasley, if you could please get in touch with your sister,” he said.

Ron nodded and left the room without a question. Hermione still sat next to the bed, looking just as deep in thought as the Headmaster had.

“Is there anything else you can tell us, Mr Malfoy?” Dumbledore asked.

Draco looked up at him, still without moving. “Nothing about the vision,” he said. “However, I can no longer feel my legs.”

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