Harry Potter and the Gemini Curse @ghostandmiracle42
Act I, Chapter 3

Act I, Chapter 3: Without a Trace

It soon became apparent to Harry that his greatest fear would not come to pass.

After waking up in the Home, Harry had pulled himself together and used the Amulet to return to his room in the Leaky Cauldron. Thankfully, the question of where he was going to stay had been eradicated. So, after adding the small amulet to the chain around his neck that Ginny had sent him, Harry had proceeded to explore Diagon Alley more thoroughly. He bought enough groceries to restock the pantry and fridge and replaced the potions ingredients. He had then disappeared into London where Hedwig had found him and transported to Home. The strange thing? No Owl had visited Harry to inform him of his expulsion, and it had been 24 hours since he had blown up his Aunt.

Harry spent the next week both exploring London, finally buying himself a few sets of clothes that fit correctly and getting used to the reality of the Home's existence. Harry discovered four more rooms at the end of the bedroom hallway: A library that Hermione would go nuts over; a gym full of Muggle equipment that Harry figured he should probably start using; a large empty room with several runes on the floor that Harry assumed was for spell casting; and a potions lab that would make even Professor Snape jealous. In Harry's opinion, the greatest treasure contained in the Library were his parents' textbooks. He had found his mother's third-year Charms, Arithmancy and Ancient Runes books as well as her second-year Charms book and his father's third year Transfiguration book. There was also a collection of books in a separate case that appeared to be written by the mysterious Marauders themselves. Try as he might, Harry had been unable to discover the reasons for his parents' nicknames, or who they corresponded too. There were no pictures or papers in the house that connected faces to codenames.

He did, however, know the identities of the other residents.

Remus Lupin, Peter Pettigrew and Sirius Black. It turned out Ragnok had been telling the truth. Sirius was a good friend of his fathers. Harry wasn't sure what to think about that but decided he would follow Ragnok's advice and, if Harry were to ever meet the man, he would give him the benefit of the doubt. Remus Lupin's hand was the only one that ever moved on the large clock. His hand frequently jumped between work, a place called the den, and school. As Black had been in prison, and Pettigrew seemed to not be in the country, Harry assumed Lupin must have been Padfoot, as he was the only logical person who could have used the Home any time recently.

Harry did, however, follow his Mum's advice. Hidden behind the family clock was a set of dials that changed the 'settings' of the Pocket Dimension. It was relatively simple to operate. All he had to do was set the largest dial to Amulet Only, and the place was put on lockdown. There was also a setting that allowed Owls in and out, so he activated that to allow the much-dreaded Ministry owl eventual entry, and so that Hedwig could come and go as she pleased.

But the Ministry Owl never came. It was as if his underage magic had not even been detected. Harry resolved after a week that he would show up at the Hogwarts Express, and if they tried to arrest him, he would use the Amulet to return Home before they could snap his wand.

Harry spent most of his time in the Home doing two things: using the Quidditch Pitch to practice his Seeking, and reading through Ancient Runes of Forgotten Civilisations.

He was correct in his observations the first night. There was a barrier surrounding the house. Harry wasn't sure whether it was magic or something else, but it had a faint blue light and pulsed like water. And it enveloped the property like a dome. Harry assumed this was the edge of the Pocket Dimension. The pitch did have a broom shed with some brooms in it. But they were all quite old, and none could match his Nimbus 2000. The shed also had a collection of balls. Quaffles and Bludgers, but Harry was more interested in the two Snitches. One was a standard Snitch like the one they used at Hogwarts, the other was a professional level Snitch. Harry had a lot of fun chasing after and catching that one.

Ancient Runes of Forgotten Civilisations was very interesting. It spoke about dozens of different languages from dozens of lost civilisations. It had lists of Egyptian, Greek, Norse, Aztec, Elven and Dwarven runes, along with short biographies of their cultures histories, and why they were no longer around. There was even a whole chapter on a group of people called Inhumans that Harry had never even heard of. Chapter 13 concerned the subject of Space-Time and the impact that different runes could have on it. Harry had checked the Library and found another copy of Riker O'Neill's book on the shelf with lots of notes in the margins of that chapter. But the chapters Harry found the most interesting were Chapters 24 through 36. The Zodiac Runes.

The Gemini Rune

The Gemini Rune, also known as the Binding Rune, the Twin Rune or the Bond Rune, is one of the most challenging runes to produce. Its function is to bind two objects together on a subatomic (magical, for those of you who are stupid) level. It synchronises the vibrations of the two objects, creating perpetual and infinite harmony between the two.

Possible functions include:

o Short or long-distance communication

o Teleportation between two locations

o Dimensional anchorage

o Wormhole creation

o Energy Transference

o Imprisonment

o Horcrux Creation

Like the other Zodiac Runes, the Gemini Rune can be used on people, but it requires two consenting recipients who already exist at a similar wavelength. The rune is exceedingly difficult to create, and only a perfect rune will operate correctly if used on a person.

Possible functions include:

o Empathic Connection

o Energy transference

o Enslavement

o Soul-bonding

o Teleportation

Use of the Gemini Rune is highly dangerous and not recommended, even by me. There are numerous other ways to produce the effects of the Gemini Rune. As a result, usage is very uncommon. Once created, the Rune cannot be removed, and its power will only be disabled once both host objects or persons are destroyed or killed.

Possible Side-effects of using the Gemini Rune:

o Mental Insanity

o Power overload

o Spontaneous combustion

o Superiority complex

o Dependency disorder

o Instant Death

o Slow Death

o Painful Death

o Lots, and lots of different forms of instant, slow and/or painful death (Get the idea?)

Suffice to say, Harry was very, very scared for himself and Ginny.

The book was very interesting, so much so in fact that Harry actually finished it within a week. So, he started reading his mother's Ancient Runes textbook as well. Admittedly his favourite part of the book was reading his mother's notes in the margins. There were also a number of notes in another hand that he didn't recognise, but it looked masculine judging by the roughness and the deeper indents.

Eventually, two weeks after he had left the Dursley's, Harry wrote a letter to Professor McGonagall asking if he could change from Divination to Ancient Runes. This would be the ultimate test. If McGonagall replied, then Harry hadn't been expelled as he feared. If she didn't answer or replied asking for his location so he could be arrested, he had bigger problems than Ancient Runes.

So, when Harry received a reply from Professor McGonagall the next day applauding him for his decision, Harry was understandably thrilled. He also concluded that, somehow, the Gemini Rune allowed him to bypass the restriction on underage magic, although how and why were up for debate, as the book mentioned nothing about it.

So, for the next month, Harry made use of his new-found freedom. He explored Diagon Alley, read through the books in the Home, stared at the Firebolt on display in Quality Quidditch Supplies, ate at Florean Fortescue's Ice-Cream Parlour, stared at the Firebolt on display in Quality Quidditch Supplies, finished all his homework, and stared at the Firebolt on display in Quality Quidditch Supplies.

He also explored the four anchors. As his Mum had said the first door, which was red, opened into Hogwarts. Harry didn't dare actually step through the door as he didn't know whether Dumbledore had a means of detecting who was in the castle at any given time. The yellow door entered into the Potter Family Vault. Harry didn't risk stepping through this one either, as Ragnok had stated he couldn't enter without his guardian, and Griphook had told him what happened to people who entered Gringotts vaults they weren't supposed to the first time he had visited the bank.

He did enjoy exploring through the green door, which opened into Hyde Park. As he stepped through, the door and the home vanished, replaced with a simple stone archway in a large park. None of the nearby Muggles seemed to notice him appearing out of nowhere, so Harry assumed there must be Notice-me-not charms surrounding the arch. He found the home rune etched into the stone nestled between a crack and some graffiti. There was no way someone would notice it wasn't meant to be there.

The last door, which was blue, exited into an alley in the fabled village of Hogsmeade, which lay just beyond Hogwarts. Harry knew that, without his permission slip signed, he wouldn't be allowed to exit the castle with the other third years. This door, however, would allow him to bypass the gates altogether and give him an easy way of entering the village without permission. Harry decided not to explore the town yet, opting to wait for Ron and Hermione so they could do it together.

The night before Harry was set to return to Hogwarts, he found himself standing on the beach once more. Tiny objects were buzzing around the city, attacking the dragons. Explosions rocked the towers and lightning fell from a black sky. Throwing caution to the wind, Harry began to run out into the waves, the pain in his arm burning more than it ever had before. The water was much shallower than he expected, so Harry kept running, wading through the waves as he made his way as close as he could to the city. The central tower exploded, collapsing to the ground, and the Gemini Rune stung worse than even the Basilisk fang.

"NOOOO!" Harry screamed, gripping his arm as he watched in horror as the city began to sink beneath the waves. Harry stared down at his arm and gasped. Inked onto his arm, clear as daylight, was a sparkling black dragon, a shimmering scarlet phoenix emerging from its mouth, and it was blazing with light. Not thinking about how stupid it was, or how the thought of having yet another mark on his skin made his hair stand on end, Harry threw his arms forward toward the city, trying to lift it above the water. Then, as if some god had answered his prayers, the water around the city began to boil, the city started to right itself, and a magnificent translucent barrier shimmered into being around it. The buzzing creatures were repelled from the city and turned towards where Harry stood, alone and waist deep in the ocean. Standing his ground, Harry held his hands up. He had to protect the city as long as he could. And if Ginny was somehow inside like her letter suggested, then he would make damn sure he protected her too.

Harry jerked awake in a cold sweat. The alarm clock on his desk was screeching at him to get of bed. He had finally gotten close to the City, but he had arrived too late. The Gemini Rune continued to burn on his neck. If the Gemini Rune was a connection to Ginny, Harry would bet that she had had another dream, and had woken at the same time he had. That constant sense of longing was feeling even more pronounced than usual as well.

Sitting up, Harry's alarm clock said 8am. Half an hour and he would be meeting with Ragnok to see what he had found over the summer. Pulling a set of his new clothes, Harry made his way to the kitchen, where he had a quick bite of toast. Before long he was standing in the entrance hall in front of the clock. Moony, Padfoot and Wormtail's hands were all now pointed to travelling. He quickly turned the settings back to unlocked, as he wasn't sure whether the amulet would work within the school wards. Stepping back, Harry placed his hand on his mum's amulet.

"Return," he whispered, and everything began to blur. Harry closed his eyes and counted to five. He opened his eyes and grinned, he was standing in the alley between Madam Malkin's and Ollivanders. Stepping out of the lane, Harry made his way to Gringotts. As soon as he stepped inside, Griphook stood up from one of the tellers and beckoned him over.

"Ah, Mr Potter. I was hoping to see you today."

"I can't stay long I'm afraid," Harry told him.

"Not to worry. Director Ragnok assumed as much and, as he will be away on urgent business most of this morning prepared these in anticipation of your arrival." Griphook handed Harry two envelopes with gold ink on the front. One addressed to him, one addressed to Ginny.

"If you would give this to Miss Weasley when you meet her Gringotts would greatly appreciate it. It would appear as though the same person who is intercepting your mail from us is intercepting hers as well. Director Ragnok has already dismembered five goblins discovered to be a part of this rather nasty business and is in the process of discovering just how deep the corruption within our own ranks has gone. Rest assured we will not rest until it is burnt out." Griphook gave Harry a smile that could probably curdle milk at that point, so he wisely took the letters, thanked the Goblin and departed as quickly as possible.

Making his way out the front door of the Leaky Cauldron with the intention of taking the Tube to Kings Cross, Harry was stunned to see a three-story purple bus sitting on the sidewalk. A young man in a purple waistcoat was calling down the street.

"Knight Bus! Knight Bus! Un way trip to Kings Cross yu lot! All on board ow, we're leaven in five."

Harry, shrugging his shoulders, boarded the bus. And immediately regretted it. After what was quite possibly the absolute worst bus ride of his life, The Knight Bus ground to a halt. Harry managed to avoid face planting, barely, by holding onto the bannister so tight his knuckles went white.

"Kings Cross," the man said, gesturing towards the door. Standing on shaky legs, Harry made his way outside, several witches and wizards stepping off behind him. Until that moment, Harry had never realised how good having solid ground beneath your feet could be.

The Knight Bus sped off down the road with a bang, and Harry made his way into Kings Cross.

The ride on the Knight Bus had taken longer than Harry had thought it did, so he quickly made his way through the throng of people and through the barrier to platform nine and three quarters. Jumping aboard the scarlet steam engine as it began to take off, Harry saw Mr and Mrs Weasley waving at a group of redheads sticking their heads out the window near the front carriage. Harry looked into the last compartment and saw a single man wearing a shabby set of wizards robes which had been patched up in a number of places. He appeared quite sickly, and his hair had a tinge of grey to it. Deciding he wouldn't get any better than this, Harry decided to wait for Ron and Hermione, who would no doubt be moving down the train looking for him.

Leaning against the wall, Harry pulled out his necklace. The amulet with the home rune was still dark and unassuming, but Ginny's Zodiac pendant seemed to have taken on a new shine. It reflected the sunlight beautifully off the golden body, making the white symbols seem to glow with their own light. A sharp twinge suddenly ran through his arm.

"What's the matter, Potter? Admiring a piece of crappy jewellery? I always knew you laid on the whole poor person look so the Weasel wouldn't get jealous, but it looks like you've finally given up and bought some new clothes. Why keep that though?" Harry looked up and inwardly groaned. Draco Malfoy and his cronies, Crabbe and Goyle, were standing in the corridor with smug looks on their faces.

"Speaking of which, where is the Weasel? Did his family blow all their money in Egypt and now they can't afford school fees? And what about the Mudblood? Still recovering from last year?"

Harry cracked a smile. This was going to be fun.

"Malfoy? You might want to turn around." Malfoy scoffed and raised his eyebrow.

"Think I'm stupid do you Potter?"

The sound of someone clearing their throat behind him, caused Malfoy to lose all the colour in his face. He slowly turned around to see Percy Weasley standing behind him in his Hogwarts robes, Head Boy badge pinned to his chest. Standing behind him were Fred, George, Ron, Ginny and Hermione. Harry locked eyes with a grinning Ginny, winked at her and gestured to the wall. Ginny nodded and pulled Hermione and Ron to the side, Fred and George, seeing what she was doing, copied their movements. Now it was just Percy, Malfoy, Crabbe and Goyle in the hallway. A perfect target.

"Mr Malfoy, I believe I just heard a rather vulgar word that just so happens to be looked down upon at Hogwarts leave your mouth. Do you perhaps have any reason to use such profanity?" Using Percy's arrogant attitude as a distraction, Harry placed his finger on the wall opposite and drew a downward vertical line followed by a right slanting diagonal line, followed by a left-slanting diagonal line. He then lifted his finger off the aging paint and flicked his hand towards the four boys. The Aquila rune Harry had explicitly memorised for this purpose glowed a faint white, a burst of wind rushed down the corridor, and Draco, Crabbe and Goyle went flying forward. Goyle faceplanted on the floor beneath Fred and George, who both kicked him for good measure. Crabbe landed on his ass, and a loud snap indicated his wand had been in his back pocket when he hit the ground. As for Malfoy, he went straight into Percy, falling right on top of the redhead, knocking his glasses to the floor, where they promptly snapped.

The entire train carriage was dead silent for a moment. Then Ginny burst out laughing. Harry and Ron soon followed, and in five seconds flat, the whole carriage, including the people who had stuck their heads out of other compartments to see what was going on, we're all caught in laughing, giggling and coughing fits.

Malfoy slowly stood to his feet, his face bright red, and spun to Harry, putting his wand in his face. Harry simply raised his hands in the air, still laughing.

"You did that!" Malfoy snapped.

"How could I have possibly done it? My wand is still in my jacket pocket. How could I have removed it without being seen, cast a spell, and replaced it, without being seen?" Malfoy turned even redder.


"Mr Malfoy!" Percy snapped, pulling himself to his feet, "Thirty points from Slytherin for pulling a wand on a classmate. Put that away and return to your compartment. Now."

Malfoy, arm shaking, and jaw clenched at being told what to do by a Weasley of all people, lowered his wand and stalked back the way he came. Crabbe and Goyle scrambled to their feet and followed him with their tails between his legs.

Fred and George slid down the wall of the train, ending up in heaps on the floor, their entire bodies racked with laughter. Ginny was staring at Harry with pure admiration in her eyes, and a mischievous smile on her lips. He had no doubt she knew exactly what he did. Hermione was staring at him, stunned, trying to figure out what had happened. Ron was clapping in awe as he tried desperately to control the hiccups that were escaping his mouth. Percy just sighed and ran a hand through his hair.

"For what it's worth, nice job putting Malfoy in his place Head Boy. It won't do much good though, Snape will just give him fifty points to compensate once he goes and whines to him," Harry told him, before pulling his wand and casting Oculus Reparo on Percy's broken glasses. He picked them off the floor and handed them back to the boy, who had a slight rosy tint to his cheeks.

"Professor Snape, Harry. You're not wrong though. Maybe it will make some of the younger Slytherins listen to me. Well, you can only dream."

Percy straightened his robes, rubbed his badge to ensure nothing was obscuring its shine and gave his brothers a quick smile.

"Well, I must be off to the prefect's cabin. I'll see you all sometime during the journey I suppose, knowing you lot," Percy said, looking down at Fred and George, who were still trying to compose themselves. He turned on his heel and strutted out of the carriage.

"Bloody hell. That was a way to start the year," Ron exclaimed.

"Seriously Ronald," Hermione scolded him.

"Good to see you too Ron. How was Egypt?" Harry asked, walking over to his best mate and slapping him on the back.

"Wicked. All the mummies and tombs were incredible. Even Scabbers enjoyed himself." Ron said as Ginny tried to pull Fred and George off the floor.

"Brilliant. What about you Hermione? How was France?" Hermione pulled Harry into a quick hug before releasing him.

"Oh, it was wonderful, we went skiing in the alps for a bit, then I took Mum and Dad into the magical district of Paris. There's so much to learn about, I ended up writing another roll of parchment for my History of Magic Essay on top of the two I'd already written. I brought back a book on it if you're interested."

"I'll add it to the library," Harry said casually, watching Hermione's face. She did not disappoint. She lit up like a proverbial Christmas tree.

"Library? What library?"

"Mine. You're going to love it," Harry told her, a massive grin on his face.

"You have a library? How? Where? I thought you were stuck at the Dursleys the whole holiday…"

"Speaking of the Dursleys Harry, how did they treat you. No bars on the window this year?" Ron interrupted.

"Oh no. You do not get to interrupt Ronald. Harry questions, answers. Libraries are more important than… Wait. Ron, did you just say bars on his window?" Hermione's smile was gone, her voice faded to a whisper. Her eyes were fixed on Harry, her message abundantly clear.

"I promise I'll answer both of your questions later. It's a long story." Thankfully, Ginny had finally managed to get Fred and George to their feet.

"Harry! How did you… do whatever it is you did?" George asked. You could tell the twins were still recovering as they neglected to talk in twin-speak.

"It was Aquila, right?" Ginny piped up, squeezing between the twins.

"Exactly. Just drew it onto the wall and bam! A blast of wind to knock Malfoy and his buddies over, right into Percy. Crabbe's wand was an added bonus."

"Aquila? What's an Aquilla?" Hermione asked, looking from Harry to Ginny and back again.

"And how does Ginny know about it?" Ron asked.

Harry grinned.

"Why don't you all step inside and I'll tell you a story," Harry said, gesturing to his compartment.

Harry, the four Weasleys and Hermione managed to squeeze inside. Fortunately, the compartment seemed larger than normal. Hermione stated that the cabins increased their size to fit the number of occupants. She'd read about it in Hogwarts: A History.

"Who do you reckon he is?" Ron asked, pointing at the raggedy man.

"Professor R. J. Lupin," Hermione said matter of factly.

Harry's stomach lurched in his chest, and it wasn't from the movement of the train.

"How'd you… You know everything I swear." Rom muttered.

Lupin. He was one of the Marauders.

"It's on his suitcase Ronald," Hermione said, rolling her eyes.

He had been best friends with his parents. But which one was he? Padfoot? The clock had said that Padfoot had been in Mortal Peril most of the time. Was that why his clothes were so tatty?

"Yeh Ronald," Fred said, shaking his head.

Wormtail? Had he been overseas like Ron and Hermione were?

"Obviously," George added, rolling his eyes.

Or was he Moony? Harry intended to find out.

"Oh, enough you two," Ginny said, taking a seat next to Harry. He couldn't help but notice that the Gemini Rune warmed up when her hand brushed his leg.

"Do you recon he's asleep?" Ron asked.

"Seems to be," Hermione said, peering over at the man in the ragged cloak.

"Good. Well, I suppose the first thing I should tell you, is that I didn't spend the summer at my Aunt and Uncles."

"What!" Hermione exclaimed. Ron quickly shushed her, gesturing to Lupin.

"Way to go Harry!" Fred exclaimed, giving him a high-five.

"I kind of accidentally inflated my Aunt. So I figured hanging around wasn't the best option for my continued survival." Everyone stared at him with different expressions. Fred and George were trying not to break out in laughter again. Hermione looked outraged. Ron seemed very confused. And Ginny had a massive grin on her face.

"How weren't you expelled?" Hermione finally asked.

"I don't have the Trace," Harry stated, a smile creeping onto his face as Fred and George's faces moulded into identical mischievous smirks.

"…How?" Hermione whispered. She appeared to be somewhere between awe and disappointment.

"I think it has something to do with this." Harry bent his head, revealing the Gemini Rune marked into the back of his neck.

"The tattoo you and Ginny got after the Chamber?" Ron said.


"Wait, does that mean I don't have the trace either?" Ginny asked.

"Probably," Harry confirmed. She jumped to her feet and pumped her fist in the air.

"Yes!" She exclaimed, before proceeding to dance around the compartment.

"Ginny, you are so helping us craft new pranks over the summer break next year," George stated.

"Only if I get prank exception." She stated, waging a finger at the twins. Fred and George seemed to have a silent conversation that involved a lot of hand waving and eye-rolling, but eventually, they turned back to their hyperactive sister.


"…Accept," they stated.

"Double yes!" Ginny pumped two more fists in the air, before sitting back down. It seemed as though a permanent smile had been plastered on her face.

"That is so not fair." Ron moaned.

"Trust me, Ron, if you knew about the side-effects, you wouldn't be so upset," Harry said. The atmosphere in the carriage took a 180-degree turn.

"You read the book then," Ginny stated.

"Where do you think I got the Aquila rune from?" Harry told her, grabbing the second years hand, giving it a slight squeeze. Her smile had vanished. The Gemini rune let out a soft warmth through Harry's neck.

"What book? Is it from the library you mentioned? And how does Ginny know about it?" Hermione rambled.

"What side-effects?" The twins asked, their faces taking on a deadly serious tone.

"Mental Insanity, Power overload, Spontaneous combustion, Superiority complex, Dependency disorder, Instant Death, Slow Death, Painful Death and lots, and lots of different forms of instant, slow and/or painful death." Ginny recited solemnly. She turned to Harry.

"I memorised that bit," she whispered.

"Me too," he said, giving her hand another squeeze.

"The book is called Ancient Runes of Forgotten Civilisations by Riker O'Neill. Yes, it was in the library, but I only found it later. Ginny found a copy and sent it to me from Egypt. She has Bill's old copy," Harry stated.

The compartment was very quiet for a long time.

"So, have you figured out what it is?" Ron asked eventually.

"Yeh. It's called a Gemini Rune. It's essentially a means of bonding two objects or people together for a variety of different purposes. I don't know what ours is supposed to do," Harry admitted.

Hermione frowned, "But Professor Dumbledore said…"

"Dumbledore lied," Ginny stated, "Bill recognised it the second he saw it. It's one of the twelve Zodiac Runes, the most powerful runes in the world. There's no way Dumbledore didn't know what it was."

Deciding to move the conversation away from its morbid direction, Harry began to narrate his escape from Privet Drive and his arrival at Gringotts.

"This is for you by the way," Harry said, pulling the letters Griphook had given him from his pocket and handing Ginny hers.

"I don't know what's in it. Griphook gave me them this morning. I haven't even read mine yet either."

Ginny broke the wax seal and pulled out the letter.

"Dear Miss Weasley," Ginny read aloud, "My name is Director Ragnok. I am responsible for the British branch of Gringotts International Wizarding Bank. It is my duty to inform you that you have been caught up in a corruption scandal at Gringotts bank. As a result, your personal information has been compromised. Please be advised that as compensation, One Thousand Galleons has been added to yours's and Mr Potter's joint account with us…" Ginny trailed off.

"Joint account?" she asked. Harry scratched the back of his neck.

"Yeah, the Gemini Rune gives you access to my Trust Vault, because it binds us together. It also gives you access to my Family Vault, but neither of us can legally enter it without my legal guardian, who just so happens to be a wanted murderer." Harry said with a shrug, awaiting the inevitable explosion.



"She can't accept that!"


Harry sighed.

"My legal guardian is Sirius Black." Ignoring the exclamations of shock outrage from the others, Harry focussed on Lupin. The man fidgeted slightly at the mention of Black's name. Not enough to be noticeable to anyone who wasn't looking for it. But Harry caught it. Remus Lupin was awake and listening.

"I know, I know. It's crazy. But listen, Black was one of my dad's best friends. And Ragnok says he was never given a trial. Just picked up off the street and thrown into Azkaban. He was also a Gryffindor. I think there's more to the situation than we know. I'm not saying he's innocent, just that I don't think we have all the facts."

Ginny it seemed, had continued reading silently while everyone fumed. She was now staring at the paper in anger.

"Someone has been intercepting our mail from Gringotts?" She asked.

"Yep. I'll give you three guesses." Harry told her. Ginny's eyes darkened, and Harry thought rage was a good look on her.

"Albus Dumbledore," she whispered.

"Ding, ding, ding we have a winner."

"Ragnok says here that he's, um, dismembered five goblins already for aiding whatever is going on and he expects to find more. So, what do we do?"

"Don't know. We won't be able to speak to him until the end of the year." That was not strictly speaking true, as Harry could use the Home to travel from Hogwarts to Hyde Park and catch the Underground to Charing Cross easily. But he didn't want Lupin to know that he had access to it. He would show the others the Home once they arrived at Hogwarts.

Suddenly the train jerked as if someone had hit the brakes.

"We can't be there yet?" Hermione whispered, the previous conversation forgotten.

Harry and Ginny stood up and poked their heads out the compartment door. The train jerked again, and the duo fell backwards, landing back on the seat. Ginny on top of Harry. Ginny blushed to the roots of her hair.

"Sorry," she said.

"Don't worry about it," he told her as she quickly sat up and buried her blush in her hair. The others had apparently not noticed, as, at the same moment, all the lights in the train had flickered out.

"We must have broken down," Fred and George said.

"Ouch! Ron that was my foot!" Hermione exclaimed. Ron had climbed over her to stare out the window.

"There's something moving out there," he whispered, "I think somethings come aboard."

Then suddenly, as if someone had turned on a very powerful air-conditioner, the temperature on the train plummeted, and frost began to gather on both the compartment door and the outside window. A cloaked figure moved in front of the door and Ginny shrunk into Harry's chest. Hermione and Ron had bunched up against the window while Fred and George sat frozen.

Pain began lancing down Harry's arm. The same pain he had felt in the dream as the city began to sink. A hand that looked as though it belonged on a corpse reached out and opened the door. The… thing… on the other side was like a nightmare come to life. A sense of inescapable dread and fear rose up like a flood within him as he stared into where he assumed its face should be.

The creature stuck its cloaked head inside the compartment, and a soft white light filled the room. The pain in Harry's arm and neck reached a crescendo, and he glanced down at his forearm. There, glowing for all the world to see, was the mark of the Dragon and Phoenix. The creature, as if sensing Harry as the greatest threat in the room, focussed on him, and let out a long shuddering breath. The cold in the room intensified even further, and Ginny whimpered into Harry's chest. But all Harry could hear was screaming. A woman's scream. High pitched and desperate. Another white light burst into the room, this one much brighter and much more violent, but Harry couldn't see where it was coming from. All he could see was darkness and a flash of green.

When Harry woke up, he was floating in water. Panicking, he pushed himself up and realised he was in the ocean. The City was floating nearby, but it was dark, and there was no light inside the buildings this time. They were all dark, and there were no Dragons or Phoenixes in the skies. Harry took a deep breath and plunged forward. Maybe he could reach the City before the inevitable this time. He trudged on, beckoned forward by the sense of longing, which was suddenly so much stronger than in the waking world, and the Gemini Rune, which was like a hot poker prodding his neck.

With every step, the City got closer and closer, until the silver towers were so close he could make out individual balconies. He took another step, and the ground vanished under him. Harry sank beneath the water and desperately began reaching for the surface, trying to kick his legs to force him up. He broke the surface, and took a massive gulp of air, before reaching out for the bluff he had stepped away from. Finding it, he pulled himself back into the shallows and knelt in the sand, desperately trying to get his breath back.

Then the screaming started.

"Not Harry! Please! Not Harry! Take me!" A light flashed in a tower near the edge of the city and Harry stared in horror as a green light lit up the room.

"Harry!" another, more familiar voice screamed, and Harry wrenched his eyes away from the tower, where the same laughter that had haunted his dreams since before he could remember was now cackling freely and stared at the city's edge. Standing on the edge of the floating platform was Ginny, dressed just as she was on the train. Advancing towards her was an image he knew all too well. A teenage boy with sleek black hair wearing Slytherin robes. In one hand was a white wand, in the other, was a black and green Diary.

The Gemini Rune blazed in fury as Harry watched Riddle force Ginny closer to the ocean.

"GINNY!" Harry yelled, "Don't let him force you from the City!"

Ginny spun around and saw him.


"I can't get to you! It's too deep! You have to stay there! You have to fight him!" He yelled, but even as he said the words, they felt hollow. Everything was cold. Hope was nothing here. It had deserted him. A long shuddering breath grated out from behind him, and Harry spun around. Standing behind him was the creature from the train. But this time his arm was not burning, and no rune illuminated. The creature grabbed Harry's throat with its decaying hand and forced him beneath the water.

Harry and Ginny jerked awake with simultaneous screams of pure fear.

"They're awake!" Harry heard Madam Pomfrey's voice exclaim. Sliding his glasses back onto his face, he found himself in the garish white of the Hospital Wing and realised that Madame Pomfrey, Professor McGonagall, Professor Lupin and Professor Dumbledore were all standing at the foot of his bed. In the bed opposite him, was Ginny.

Lupin pulled a bar of chocolate from his pocket and snapped it in two, before handing half to each of them.

"Eat, it'll help counteract the effects," Lupin said, gesturing to the chocolate.

"Finally, a Defence teacher who actually knows what they're doing," the nurse mumbled as she placed another large block on the bedside table.

"What… What was that thing?" Harry asked as his voice came back to him.

"It was a Dementor, one of the guards of Azkaban. It was searching the train for Sirius Black under Minister Fudge's orders, which he refrained from informing me of," Dumbledore stated. Gone was the twinkle in his eye and every line on his face was tense.

"Mr Potter, Miss Weasley, I'm afraid I must depart for now. I leave you in the capable hands of Professors Lupin and McGonagall, as well as Madame Pomfrey. I need to have words with the Minister." With that Dumbledore turned on his heel and walked out the Hospital Wing doors, robes billowing behind him.

"What happened?" Ginny asked.

"The both of you had a very severe reaction to the Dementor on the train and fainted. I forced it away, but when the two of you wouldn't wake, I used an emergency portkey to transport you both here. The train should arrive in a little under an hour," Lupin said, sitting on the edge of Harry's bed.

"Why were we affected when the others weren't?" Harry wondered.

"The Headmaster believes it's a complication due to the um…" Professor McGonagall trailed off.

"Gemini Rune," Ginny mumbled, rubbing the mark on her neck, which was bright red and inflamed. Harry ran his hand over his own mark and realised it was similarly raw.

"What?" McGonagall said, turning to face Ginny.

Harry's stomach went south fast, and he spun to face Ginny. However, Ginny seemed to have recovered from her faux pause faster than Harry would have thought possible.

"My brother Bill, he's a curse breaker, he says it's called the Gemini Rune. Apparently its really rare, and he's going to keep researching it." Ginny covered. Not a lie, but a long shot from the truth.

"Well, I'm glad you've discovered some information. I shall inform Albus when he returns so he can pursue this new avenue of research."

Harry glanced at Lupin, but the man, who Harry realised was much younger than his appearance would suggest, wore a blank mask. He knew Harry and Ginny knew more than they were saying, but he didn't say anything. There was no way he couldn't be one of the Marauders.

"Well, the feast will be starting soon, so I suggest the two of you make your way down to the Great Hall. Oh, and Mr Potter, I applaud you on your choice to change from Divination to Ancient Runes, a much more worthy discipline in my personal opinion. What made you decide to change at the last minute, if I may ask?"

Harry pointed at his neck, "Well, I figured I've got one stuck to my neck, so I may as well learn as much about it as I can. That and, well I found out my Mum used to do Ancient Runes, so I wanted to give it a try, to see if I can be a little bit closer to her. If that makes any sense." He told her.

McGonagall smiled, "It makes all the sense in the world." And with that, she turned and left the Hospital Wing.

A Message from Ghost and Miracle:

"Hey, honey?" Miracle said, placing her twelfth-century eagle feather quill (that they had stolen from the actual twelfth century) back in the Inkwell. Ghost looked up from his seat in the library, where he was still working on inventorying the books they'd saved from Alexandria last week.


"I've just done a bit of research. Did you know we only know three people in Ginny's year?" She said in astonishment.

Ghost raised an eyebrow.

"That can't be right," he said, moving to look at her parchment.

"Wow. Sucks to be her doesn't it?"

"Kinda does yeah," Miracle admitted. Ghost tapped a finger on his chin a few times, seemingly deep in thought.

"You know what?" He said eventually, turning to look out the strange window that stared out over the expanse of red mist. "I think we need to go find her some friends, don't you?"

Miracle grinned, eyeing the look of determination that flitted into Ghost's eyes. Then she turned to the screen, a very noticeable blush gracing her cheeks.

"I love it when he gets that look…" She whispered to the Reader. Then Ghost dropped the inventory on Miracle's desk and jumped out the window into the infinite unknown.

Anonymous reviews have been disabled. Login to review. 1. Act I, Chapter 1 2577 0 0 2. Act I, Chapter 2 3857 0 0 3. Act I, Chapter 3 6839 0 0 4. Act I, Chapter 4 3517 0 0 5. Act I, Chapter 5 2759 0 0 6. Act I, Chapter 6 3646 0 0 7. Act I, Chapter 7 3123 0 0 8. Act I, Chapter 8 3749 0 0 9. Act I, Chapter 9 3592 0 0 10. Act I, Chapter 10 4635 0 0 11. Act II, Chapter 1 4795 0 0 12. Act II, Chapter 2 4912 0 0 13. Act II, Chapter 3 4596 0 0 14. Act II, Chapter 4 4033 0 0 15. Act II, Chapter 5 4695 0 0 16. Act II, Chapter 6 4878 0 0 17. Act II, Chapter 7 5376 0 0 18. Act II, Chapter 8 4393 0 0 19. Act II, Chapter 9 3716 0 0 20. Act II, Chapter 10 7982 0 0 21. Act III, Chapter 1 8563 0 0 22. Act III, Chapter 2 3926 0 0 23. Act III, Chapter 3 4739 0 0 24. Act III, Chapter 4 2324 0 0 25. Act III, Chapter 5 5812 0 0 26. Act III, Chapter 6 6900 0 0 27. Act III, Chapter 7 3211 0 0 28. Act III, Chapter 8 6466 0 0 29. Act III, Chapter 9 2888 0 0 30. Act III, Chapter 10 7371 0 0 31. Act IV, Chapter 1 6177 0 0 32. Act IV, Chapter 2 6862 0 0 33. Act IV, Chapter 3 6360 0 0 34. Act IV, Chapter 4 7018 0 0 35. Act IV, Chapter 5 9640 0 0 36. Act IV, Chapter 6 4531 0 0 37. Act IV, Chapter 7 2345 0 0 38. Act IV, Chapter 8 7242 0 0 39. Act IV, Chapter 9 6161 0 0 40. Act IV, Chapter 10 11288 0 0 41. Act V, Chapter 1 12170 0 0 42. Act V, Chapter 2 3204 0 0 43. Act V, Chapter 3 7727 0 0 44. Act V, Chapter 4 3213 0 0 45. Act V, Chapter 5 7099 0 0 46. Act V, Chapter 6 8061 0 0 47. Act V, Chapter 7 5544 0 0 48. Act V, Chapter 8 5414 0 0 49. Act V, Chapter 9 6046 0 0 50. Act V, Chapter 10 7849 0 0 51. Act VI, Chapter 1 6040 0 0 52. Act VI, Chapter 2 3614 0 0 53. Act VI, Chapter 3 4633 0 0 54. Act VI, Chapter 4 4638 0 0 55. Act VI, Chapter 5 2781 0 0 56. Act VI, Chapter 6 6382 0 0 57. Act VI, Chapter 7 4027 0 0 58. Act VI, Chapter 8 7169 0 0 59. Act VI, Chapter 9 4260 0 0 60. Act VI, Chapter 10 5574 0 0 61. Glossary and Appendices 10011 0 0 62. Update: A potential podfic 265 0 0