Chapter Twenty-One
May You Live Every
Day of Your Life

Madame Pomfrey was there, together with a large group of other wizards and witches, some of which Harry recognized and many more that he didn’t. Among the ones he recognized was Minerva McGonagall, the Head of the Gryffindor House and the Professor of Transfiguration. George Weasley and Katie Bell had also come here instead of to Dumbledore’s office.

“Mr Malfoy, Mr Potter,” Madame Pomfrey said, running over to them. “We have a bed ready.”

She led them quickly over to the bed that had been prepared for Draco; Harry laid the blonde down. He let out a sigh when Harry stopped touching him.

Severus Snape made his way over to the bed, surprising Harry. He hadn’t seen the Potions Master.

“Harry, Draco,” he said. A flicker of concern crossed his face as he saw the pale, thin body of Draco. The blonde had lost weight in the past few weeks and the dark circles under his eyes made him look even worse. His cheeks were hollow, his skin translucent. Blue veins beneath were visible here and there.

“Any success?” Harry asked Severus.

“I have only managed to conclude which ingredients were in the poison, but no, I haven’t had any success in finding an antidote.” The Potions Master’s face was grave, and his eyes held a trace of… self-loathing? Harry hadn’t realized just how much Severus cared for Draco, but it was now clearly written on the normally blank face.

“I will, of course, continue trying,” Snape continued.

Draco gave him a small smile. “It will be fine, Severus,” he said. “I’ll be fine.”

Severus stretched out a pale hand and touched Draco’s cheek gingerly. “You were always the brave one,” he said, his voice softer than Harry had ever heard it before. He wondered if the Snape he knew had been exchanged with an alien at some point.

He turned to Harry, his face once again clear. “I have made several strengthening potions,” he said. “However, it is not advisable that you drink very much at once. They make you stronger for a few hours, but when they wear off, you will be even worse off than before. They are both addictive and deadly.”

“How much can he take for it to not be dangerous?” Harry asked.

“A few drops only,” Severus replied. “Anything more will be –”

He was interrupted as Draco began screaming. His scream was high pitched, sounding panicked, and Harry knew immediately what was happening.

“He’s hallucinating,” he told Snape, running to Draco’s side. The blonde flailed wildly with his arms, his eyes once again unfocused and wide with terror. He whimpered as Harry pushed him down. It was easier this time, when Draco couldn’t move his legs, he noticed with sadness.

“Get away from me!” Draco screamed at him and Harry felt the blonde’s whole upper body arch in an attempt to escape.

“Draco!” Harry tried, but to no avail. The boy only continued to fight against him, crying and screaming at him.

Madame Pomfrey ushered the group of people out of the room, closing the door. Only Severus and Harry were allowed to stay. He gave her a calming potion without a word and she forced it down Draco’s throat. He coughed as he tried to get away from the liquid, but Madame Pomfrey held the bottle to his lips until he drank. He coughed again as he swallowed wrongly and this time, blood came up with the potion. All three onlookers’ eyes widened.

A minute later, the potion took effect and Draco’s struggling lessened until he just lay whimpering on the bed, still trying to escape Harry. Tears fell down the side of his cheeks and onto the pillow. Harry stayed beside him, still holding him down, still giving Draco of his own strength. He bent down and placed a gentle kiss on the blonde’s sweaty forehead, whispering a soft apology.

“Has he coughed up blood before?” Madame Pomfrey asked when Harry straightened. Harry shook his head in response, not trusting his voice.

“I am sure that I don’t need to tell you that he is getting worse for each passing second, now do I?” Madame Pomfrey asked and Harry shook his head ‘no’ again.

“He’s… dying,” Harry said, his voice no more than a whisper. “I can feel it, inside.”

“You would feel it, Mr Potter,” Madame Pomfrey said. “Mainly because of the Heart Bind, but also because you are a Healer.”

Harry hardly even heard the words. He said softly, “It feels like I am fading away as well and there is absolutely no way for me to stop it…”

With that, Severus Snape had had enough. He marched over to Harry and grabbed him roughly by the shoulders. “I will not have you giving up, Potter, not now,” he said. “Especially not now when we need you more than ever.”

Harry’s eyes widened at Snape’s hard tone; he hadn’t heard it that hard since he had arrived in this future. Yet with the growling voice, his determination returned. It grew inside of him, and he realized that Severus was right. He couldn’t give up now. The other witches and wizards that were going out to fight the war needed him as backup in case they were hurt – and more than anything else, Draco needed him. He needed him to be strong, when Draco himself could not be so any longer. It would be stepping on Draco and everything he had worked for, if Harry just lay down to die as well, without a fight.

He looked up and met Severus coal black eyes. His own green eyes were sparkling with newly awoken intensity.

Just then, the door to the Infirmary flew open. Ron stood there, his face as red as his hair.

“They’re here. The Death Eaters are here.”

Running down the stairs with a semi-conscious Draco in his arms, Harry tried to pull himself together. However, with one sentence going through his mind again and again and again, he found it a very hard task to accomplish.

They were under attack.

Ron was in the front, having just turned around the moment after he’d uttered the words to the shocked people in the Infirmary. Behind him, the group of people that had been forced out of the Hospital Wing when Draco had been hallucinating were running. None of them were anyone Harry recognized, but Harry knew that they all belonged to the Order and that they were all probably old students of Hogwarts.

Madame Pomfrey was still in the Infirmary. She was going to get all the medical supplies she could down from there. Ron had informed them that they were not allowed to use the Floo-network; apparently, the Death Eaters had cursed it somehow, which meant that no one could know for sure where they would end up.

The Death Eaters had also sealed off the castle with wards so strong that even Dumbledore couldn’t break them. No one could enter and no one could leave.

They were trapped.

Harry caught a brief glimpse of Hogwarts’ surroundings through one of the windows as he continued his flight down the stairs. The grass fields were filled with tall, hooded creatures, moving about like ants in an anthill. Every single one of them looked like they had a purpose, one certain thing they were supposed to do. Wands raised in one hand, guns in the other.

And the first shot rang off.

The pain was distant, but Harry could still feel the hurt as someone was shot in the shoulder. He heard Draco cry out weakly and winced slightly. In his weak state, he would feel any sort of pain. Harry on the other hand, wasn’t weak, nor was he close enough to the victim for it to really pain him, but it slowed him slightly. Only Snape, who was right behind him, noticed.

“Move on, boy,” he said, his face set, thin lips pressed together. He placed a hand on Harry’s shoulder to keep him going.

When they finally, after what felt like an eternity, reached the entrance hall, everything stopped for a moment.


Harry fell to his knees with the sudden pain, only barely able to hold on to Draco, who was whimpering in pain as well. A second person had been shot.

Snape had someone come and take Draco away from Harry and then he grabbed Harry by the arm and hauled him up to a standing position. Ron came running over.

“Ginny said to get to the Hufflepuff common room,” he said. “They’re taking Draco there already. Come on!”

“What about them?” Harry asked, grasping his stomach in pain, where the bullet had entered the injured person. Whoever it was, he or she was dying; he could feel it…

Ron shook his head at him, “You can’t. You’ll get killed!”

“I need to help those people!” Harry screamed back at him, the pain intensifying. “We can’t lose them, not this early on…”

Ron looked between Harry and Snape, chewing on his bottom lip before nodding. “If you take the Invisibility Cloak,” he said. “And only because I know I won’t be able to stop you.”

“Fine,” Harry said and pulled the Cloak out. He’d retrieved from his bag before they fled the Hospital Wing. He pulled it tightly around himself and gave Ron a small smile before disappearing completely. Ron gave him a weak grin back and then he was running down the hallway after the group of people who were going to the Hufflepuff common room.

Harry ran outside, the Cloak tightly around him. It was a bright day, the sun low on the horizon as it was only the middle of January. The nice weather served only to make the contrast of the invaders bigger. The Death Eaters did not seem to be in complete order yet, as the siege had only begun. Still, they were a much greater number than the Order hiding inside the castle.

Harry spotted one of the victims as he hid behind one of the bushes. It was a man and he was dying – Harry could feel the energy drain out of him, the pain in his stomach increasing.

He ran over the field, moving swiftly despite the uneven terrain. The pain grew as he moved closer, but determination kept him moving. A few feet away from the victim he skidded to a stop. He stared at the man on the ground, all energy leaving him.

It was Fred Weasley.

Suddenly, Harry realized with a sinking sensation that if Fred Weasley was out here, shot, then the other person that Harry had felt being injured was most likely either Angelina or George. Probably Angelina, as George had been inside before.

“No,” he cried softly and dropped to Fred’s side. He placed one hand on Fred’s forehead and the other one on his stomach, where the blood was welling out like in some bad horror movie.

When he felt the redhead stir slightly, he whispered, “Don’t move, Fred. Just lie still, completely still…”

There were Death Eaters moving around them, none of them stopping to do anything to what they assumed was a dead body on the ground. Harry had to be very careful as he placed his hands on Fred’s body, that his hands were still covered by the Cloak.

He removed his hand from Fred’s forehead, still whispering ever so quietly to the other man that he needed to stay completely still. With his free hand, he fumbled by his belt for the Salusta potion. It was the one for the most severe injuries, and it needed the Healer’s Warmth to work. Harry hoped it was the right one to use on the injured man. For despite his attempts to heal Fred with his mere touch, the man seemed to be losing his battle.

He took the lid off the bottle with his teeth and poured five precious drops onto Fred’s stomach, where the wound gaped wide open. Then he instantly placed his own hands on top of the wound and concentrated on giving Fred as much energy as possible.

It took only a few moments for the potion to work; Harry could see the bullet pull out of the wound, pressed out by the body, and the tissues sewed itself together neatly, leaving only a faint red line in its place.

“When I say so, you need to get up and run,” Harry instructed Fred as quietly as possible. “Get your wand and your gun out; you will need it. I will cast an unnoticeable-spell on you, as well as a silencing spell, but they won’t get you far. Get inside and go to the Hufflepuff common room. Understand?”

Fred gave him the faintest of nods.

Harry performed the two spells he’d mentioned, and then looked around them for the best possible moment for Fred to make a run for the entrance to Hogwarts. The Death Eaters were milling around them, however, making it close to impossible to see an opening at all. They were all around them, inching closer and closer to where Harry was sitting on his knees next to Fred. The Invisibility Cloak wouldn’t save him if a Death Eater accidentally bumped into him.

“Now,” Harry said, and Fred was on his feet within a second. It was only about a hundred feet to the entrance, but it seemed like an impossible distance. Harry watched him go with great trepidation.

The Death Eaters noticed his flight despite the spells and began shooting and cursing him. Fred managed to deflect both bullets and spells, however, and the entrance to the school opened for him magically when he reached it. When the door closed behind the redhead, Harry drew a breath of relief. Several of the Death Eaters cursed – and others turned right to where Harry was sitting.

“Potter or Malfoy must be around here!” a Death Eater screamed at his comrades. “That Weasley boy was healed!”

Harry’s eyes widened. He rose to his feet and began moving backwards slowly, careful not to bump into anyone anywhere. When he’d removed himself far enough from the area where the Death Eaters were looking, he turned around and ran towards the bushes where he’d hid before.

From there, he spotted the other victim, now much more tightly guarded. The Death Eaters knew he would try to get to him or her next, and they were expecting his arrival. They all wanted to deliver Harry Potter to their Lord, and thus were now hungrily spying around the fields towards the Forbidden Forrest, for the young man in question.

Harry sneaked closer very, very slowly. It pained him to waste such precious seconds as he knew that the person on the ground was badly injured, just like Fred had been.

Then, suddenly, a band of Order members came running out the entrance, wands and guns in their hands.

The Death Eaters around the injured person scattered as they tried to take out the large group of people that they’d just been presented with – there were at least forty people in the group.

Harry seized the opportunity and ran towards the injured person. He barely avoided the Death Eaters around him; they were dangerously close.

When he came closer, he saw a female body on the ground and he knew that he’d been right in assuming that Angelina was the other injured person.

She lay on her back, her body completely stiff. The Death Eaters had placed a body-bind curse on her as well, after shooting her. Harry could feel the pain in his own shoulder and promptly placed his hands there. He opted not to take the body-bind off until he’d healed the young woman, as that would have revealed him to the Death Eaters around them. Instead, he just placed the vial of Keyahla potion to Angelina’s lips and she drank obediently.

The wound healed without a problem, when Harry combined the healing potion with the Healing Warmth.

He then told Angelina the same thing he’d told Fred: to get to the Hufflepuff common room. Only this time, Harry would be running with her, towards the relative safety within the Hogwarts walls.

He looked around himself and found the war going on right in front of him. He felt the pain inside of him, as people were hurt. The Healer’s instincts didn’t separate the injured Death Eaters from the Order members, however, so there was no way of knowing who’d been hurt.

Then suddenly, three people were around them, all three members of the Order. They cast the counter-spell to the body-bind and Angelina quickly stood. Flanked by the three others, all of them with wand and guns ready, they ran towards the entrance.

Harry ran after them.

Shots rang out around them, echoing in Harry’s mind. He blindly pressed on to get inside of Hogwarts, the doors oddly far away. It felt like he was moving in slow motion, and the gates weren’t getting any closer.

Then there was a sharp pain by his shoulder blade and he was thrown forward, to his knees.

“That’s Potter!” someone screamed, and Harry realized through pain that the Invisibility Cloak had been pulled down.

“Harry!” someone else yelled.

Then someone caught him as he fell forward, unconscious.

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