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Chapter XI 

The Urduja Curse 

 

“What the fuck is wrong with you.” Harry spat at her pushing her hard against the large crimson couch.

The witness’ waiting room was empty except for Harry and Hermione.

Hermione’s wail of pain echoed throughout the large room but no matter how loud it could get, they were not to be heard outside.

Harry kept his wand back inside his pocket after muttering a Silencing Charm inside the room.

Hermione stared up at him with pure hatred from her eyes. He had literary dragged her from the courtroom up a staircase and into that room.

People stared on their way but nobody dared to stop Harry from what he was doing.

Nobody would dare defy the Chosen One, the Auror who killed the Dark Lord in his time. Nobody would defy the boy who vanquished the Dark Lord who was currently seething in anger holding out his wand and dragging his fiancé back into their waiting room.

“Harry, please stop this madness.”

“Madness?” Harry incredulously repeated. “Madness? No, Hermione. I’m not mad. YOU are.”

Harry turned away from her. He walked towards the window to avoid seeing Hermione’s figure on the couch that he wanted to hurt even more.

“Harry, listen to yourself, look at yourself-“

“No, Hermione. Look at yourself and listen to yourself!”

Harry screamed at her. He kicked one of the chairs within his reach and angrily turned back to her.

“Did you hear what you just admitted to the whole courtroom? How mad is THAT Hermione?”

“I’m not mad!” Hermione cried at him. “Harry, please, I’ve been meaning to tell you-“
“Tell me what?” Harry scolded. He walked back to the couch. “Tell me what?” he challenged her.

Hermione shook her head. She bit her lip and cried even more.

“Harry, please.. Just.. just let this go. Please we don’t need to.. the man has..”

“You told the courtroom lies, Hermione! Lies!” Harry yelled back at her.

“I have never lied in that room!” Hermione angrily screamed back at him. “I have never uttered any lie in the stupid room-“

“Never lied?” Harry yelled. His eyes were wild in anger and he looked murderous.

“I have never –“

“You just told the whole courtroom that you love that bastard! That you’re bloody in love with him!”

“Because I am!” Hermione screamed back at him. She stood tall and angrily pushed Harry back.

“I am inlove with him, Harry! So what? What are you going to-“

Hermione screamed as she fell back on the couch again.

A hand so hard slapped her right across her cheek that the side of her lips had bled.

“Harry-“

“I’m going to leave and get some fresh air, Hermione.” Harry simply said as he turned away from the couch.

Hermione stared as he grabbed his travelling cloaked and pocketed his wand. He turned back to her and smiled as if nothing had happened.

“When I return, I’m going to pretend that everything that has happened in that court room today did not happen and no non-sense have been uttered from those mouth of yours.”

His emerald eyes turned into slits and a scary glint appeared for a brief moment.

“When I come back, I want to see the Hermione Granger I’ve known for years. My Hermione Granger, that is. Do you understand?”

 

 

 

 

“I don’t understand what you’re doing.”

“You don’t need to. Stay away from the glass.”

Snape ordered her as he took out his wand.

Hermione moved away from the circular glass around her bed that has been keeping her for the past few days from roaming round the room.

“Is it safe to be out of the glass?” she had asked as the Potions Master uttered the right enchantments and the glass slowly dissolved and disappeared.

“As of now, it is.” Snape answered her.

He stood up and straightened himself and stared at her weak and thin figure.

“Professor?”

“I’ve prepared dinner downstairs. Some clothes are also at the ready at the bathroom – two doors from the hallway. Once you’re done, come have dinner downstairs.”

“I’m not really hungry.”

“It’s not a question if you’re hungry or not. We need to talk.”

“About what?”

But Snape didn’t answer her. He quietly walked out of the room he has been keeping her for days since his rescue from her from the ambush.

Hermione didn’t say anything else but stood staring quietly at the closed door. She did not understand what was happening but she had no choice as her only contact to the outside world was the Potions Master whose actions were as impossible to read as his mind.

 

Snape quietly waited downstairs in the small dining room. He wasn’t sure what to do with his life now. He had been bestowed by a task that was not part of any deal at all.

The headmaster had asked him to save anyone he could and it happened to be Hermione Granger. However, her injuries were making things impossible for him to bring her back. And to think of it, that was not the only pressing matter he has at hand.

 

Harry Potter had been badly injured in a collision at a train station at London just few days after their ambush. He had been following said Death Eaters in hopes of finding Hermione. He was lucky to be alive after the Death Eaters fought back. But it wasn’t the problem – it was the Weasley boy.

He really fought against the Death Eaters and ended himself with a curse that was presently almost incurable. Chances of surviving was so slim especially if they did not have someone who can brew miracle concoctions for them.

And a few hours ago, he received news from that the Weasley boy had passed away.

He was unsure how he was going to rely that news to Hermione Granger that one of the Golden Trio did not actually make it through the war.

The Dark Lord was winning most of London and with Hogwarts, Gringotts and the Minsitry at his hands, it wouldn’t take too long for him to secure the whole of London.

He needed to escape while there was time. He had done what he had been tasked to do and for sure, the Dark Lord would not mind if his favourite minion would be out for a little vacation himself. It was his only chance of getting Hermione Granger out of harm’s way. Getting him back to Potter was a matter he would have to meet later. The priority right now was to ensure Potter’s and her health.

“Miss Granger, I need to run some tests on you tomorrow. Then you would have to stay here alone because I need to take your tests in my laboratory.”

“You mean you need to go back to the Dark Lord’s lair?”

Hermione’s voice was almost cold. He knew she was tired of not knowing things for the couple of days she had been kept there.

“I need to get some things as well. We won’t really survive this long here if my equipment are not completely.”

“How long are you going to keep me here, professor?” Hermione asked.

Hermione placed her knife and fork down and sat straight. She looked at her professor straight in the eye.

“I already told you I’m feeling better.”

“I’m the one to know if you’re alright or not. We’re not going to argue about this.”

Hermione stared at him. She hated the man.

“Atleast tell me where Harry is.” she almost begged him. “I want to know if they’re alright.”

Snape could not eat anymore. Not with all her questions and with his conscience banging things at the back of his head every now and then.

“That is what I wanted to talk to you about.”

Silence followed. Hermione was almost not breathing.

“Harry..” she whispered standing up. “Where is Harry?”

Snape gently pushed his plate away from him.

“Mr. Potter is alright.” he quietly answered her. He looked up at her straight in the eye.

“But I’m afraid Mr. Weasley did not make it.”

For a moment, Hermione just stood there with her eyes transfixed at the man.

She almost did not understand what she had just heard. Was he kidding?

“What do you mean..” Hermione whispered.

She swallowed hard and gave him a stern look.

“What do you mean that Ron did not make it?”

“I’m afraid Mr. Weasley has been hit hard after another crossfire down at London the other day. He, together with Mr. Potter and another Auror had gone down to London and chased a suspected Death Eater in hopes of finding you.”

Hermione listened in silence but tears were already threatening to fall from her eyes.

“Mr. Potter was badly injured but he is currently at St. Mungo’s. The Auror is still in a critical condition and Mr. Weasley…”

“What about Ron?” Hermione asked him. “What about Ron?”

Snape stared up at him and shook his head.

“Mr. Weasley passed away from deep injuries from the spells executed to them and after jumping off a few heights of floor from a building that he and Mr. Potter tried to escape from.”

Hermione did not really hear further details after that. All she knew was that her surroundings turned black and she felt her chest growing painful by the moment.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Harry entered a nice-looking bar. It was full of witches and wizards alike and some had greeted him in recognition.

“Mr. Potter?”

Harry looked up and saw a waited walking up to him.

“Yes?”

“This way to the private room.”

Harry stared at the old man but nodded and followed him.

“Mr. Malfoy had been waiting for you. A wine shall be serve in a moment as you study our menu for your orders.”

The old waiter led him to a private room at the very corner of the bar.

He opened the door for Harry and carried two large copies of the menu with him.

Harry entered and saw Draco talking to a wizard. He quickly nodded at the old wizard who nodded at Harry and quickly left.

“You do look like you love fancy things, don’t you?”

“And you do look like you’ve already had a drink or two before coming in here?”

Draco stared up at Harry who sat opposite him.

He gave Draco a smug stare and rudely grabbed the menu from the old waiter and pointed on a couple of things from it.

The waiter turned to Draco but he shook his head and the waiter left them to get the orders.

Draco stared at Harry and for a brief moment, he had thought how he’d never seen Harry as pathetic before.

He sat before him, half-drunk and dazed and he looked like a lost boy.

“I’ve had some drinks down at Diagon Alley.” Harry admitted staring back at him with half a smirk.

“You’re not looking bad yourself. You know.. Draco Malfoy.. all shimmery and shiny..”

Draco smirked and shook his head. He did not want to say anything to provoke Harry even further.

“What do you want from me, Malfoy?” Harry had asked. “I’m quite sure you did not want to meet in this fancy and private place just to get some old school catching up?”

Draco opened his mouth to answer but the waiter had returned.

He brought in two glasses of wine and whiskey and then a bottle of wine and whiskey.

He opened the red wine and poured some for Draco and was about to pour some for Harry but Harry had grabbed the whiskey bottle and had poured his glass almost full with it.

“Let him.” Draco muttered to the old waiter.

He watched as Harry half-filled the glass and raised it to his nose.

“To life, Malfoy!” he raised and he swallowed half of it in one go.

The waiter turned back and laid a long platter of small servings of different dishes for the two of them.

Malfoy nodded at the waiter and they were left alone.

“Well?” Harry said grabbing some grapes from the platter and then drinking another fill of whiskey.

“We’re all alone now. You can talk to me what kind of thingy you wanted to talk about.”

“I want to talk about my godfather.” Draco bravely said.

Harry stared at him for a moment. A glint passed his emerald eyes.

“Your godfather?” he asked him. “You mean old ex-professor bastard Snape?”

Harry asked him. And then he started to laugh hysterically at Draco.

Draco watched as Harry took turns swallowing a grape, refilling the whiskey bottle and dawning it all over all the while laughing at him.

“What do you want to talk about him?” Harry asked.

He laid down his empty glass and sat straight on his chair. He moved closer the table and settled his hands on the table.

“Do you want to free him? Do you want me to free him? Because honestly that is an impossible task.”

“No, I don’t think that is possible from you anymore.” Draco quietly said.

Draco moved himself closer the table and rested both his hands on the table as well. He poured some whiskey for himself and drank in one go all the while that Harry was staring at him.

“Then what do you want?”

“I want you to give him a fair trial, Potter.” Draco said without even blinking.

“It’s only a few trials left and I want you to leave it fair and hands free from you.”

“Hands free?” Harry repeated. He shook back his head.

“You think I am manipulating the Ministry? The Wizengamot?”

“Are you not?” Draco challenged him. “Are you not, Potter?”

Harry stared back at him with pure hatred from his eyes. He had suddenly remembered why he hated this blonde boy so much.

“I’m nowhere like you and your father.”

“You’re acting no different from my father, Potter.”

“I will never be like any of the Malfoys.” Harry whispered coldly. “I am no Death Eater.”

Draco stared at him for quite some time. It looked as if he was fervently fighting inside of him if he would just curse Harry or punch him right then and there.

“Fine.” Draco had said. He pushed his chair from the table and threw the napkin on it.

“Does it hurt you to hear what your father was?” Harry asked him. “Or what you were?”

“There’s nothing here to talk about.” Draco said. He moved away from the table but Harry continued talking.

“You can fool the world, Malfoy but not me. This façade you have – this businessman, a changed man. You are still a Malfoy and a Death Eater. Good clothes will not hide your precious mark nor the read you deep inside.”

“I’m not going to say anything against all these as it is the alcohol you’ve taken talking.”

“Really?”

“Really.” Draco turned to him. “But I am warning you, Potter.”

“Warning me?”

“If you hurt Granger one more time. I’m telling you that I would personally send you to Azkaban for the abuse.”

“You?” Harry laughed at him. “You? Who are you? You are no one. You are a disgrace of our world. You’ve fallen from grace, Malfoy. There is nobody to believe in you.”

“Don’t be too sure, Potter.”

Draco took his travelling cloak towards the door. He turned back at Harry.

“This is the first and last time I will warn you. Do not attempt to hurt Hermione again or this will be a case against you. Do not tempt me, Potter.”

“No, don’t tempt me to do what you will regret.” Harry said. He stood from his chair and he drew out his wand.

He pointed it directly at Draco’s chest but the other boy did not flinch.

“Over were the days when I would cringe at the sight of your wand, Potter.”

“And over were the days when I would be threatened by any of your lot.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“We both know the war is not yet over.”

“No, really?”

Narcissa stared at her dearest friend who was taking books from the shelves of the Malfoy library.

She stared with interest as he scavenged for books after books in the most precious collections of the Malfoy family.

“Would you like something to eat at least?” Narcissa asked him. “You’ve been here for three hours.”

“No, thanks.” Snape answered without looking up from a book he has been scanning. “I will also leave in a while.”

It has been two weeks since the ambush and she has been worried for her friend’s safety. She knew that Snape was part of the team to ambush Harry Potter’s transfer.

She wouldn’t show it around, but she had always been worried for his safety especially at the assignment the Dark Lord gives him.

“You’ve been away for days, Severus.”

“I’ve tended to some of my injuries.”

“You weren’t at Spinner’s End. I visited three days ago.”

Snape didn’t answer. He didn’t have time to explain everything to her.

“I had been elsewhere.” Snape said. He closed the book and opened another one.

“How’s Draco?” he had asked her to change the subject.

Narcissa crossed her arm and sat in front of him and watched his progress closely.

“Draco’s upstairs. He’s already resting. He’s alright. I’m trying my best to keep him out from all these as you know.”

“I know.” Snape said. “And Lucius?”


“Lucius is with the Dark Lord. They are trying to infiltrate some more connections of the Ministry to ensure a strong grasp of the bigger part of London.”

“I’m quite sure that will take some time.”

“And I’m quite surprised myself that you have not been in those missions.”

“I asked the Dark Lord to let be spared from those missions as he knows that I need to brew him potions in order to heal everyone that has been and might be injured still.”

Narcissa stared at Snape and knew that he was avoiding her gaze. She leaned across the table and handed him another book from the pile across the table.

“The Dark Lord seems to be soft on you lately.”

“Not really.” Snape answered her.

He continued copying something from one of the books to another parchment.

“The Dark Lord does not seem to bring you around.”

“He knows my duty has been fulfilled. I’m more of someone he needs at the back to heal his most precious army.”

Narcissa stared as Snape continued to copy something from another book.

“You can bring them, Severus.” Narcissa said. “Lucius will not be here to look for what is missing in his precious library.”

“I can’t carry them all.” Snape simply replied. “I can only bring what I really need. But thank you.”

Narcissa continued to watch him silently.

“Won’t you tell me where you are staying?”

Snape stopped writing. He lowered his quill and pocketed another parchment. He closed three books from across the table and pulled another one.

“When it is safe, I will tell you.”

“Is there anything else you would need from me?” Narcissa slowly asked him.

She knew him and knew too well that he was hiding something from her.

“Let me help you, Severus. What exactly are you looking for here?”

For a moment, Narcissa thought that Severus would refuse her help. And then suddenly, he closed the book he was reading and he pulled out a parchment from his pocket.

Narcissa quietly watched as he edged her towards a parchment where he drew something on it.

When he finished, he looked up and showed it to Narcissa.

“Do you know what this is?”

Narcissa slowly took the parchment from him and glared closer at the drawing.

It was a drawing of the mark that was alike the one across Hermione’s neckline and down across her chest.

“Narcissa?” Snape quietly asked. "Can you confirm if this is what I think it is?"

“Where did you see this?” Narcissa slowly asked back.

She slowly lowered the parchment and flinched at the sight of it. She looked up at Snape.

“Where did you see this mark?”

“Do you know what it is?” Snape urgently asked her. “I need to know what it is.”

“I need to know first where you’ve seen it.”

“I can’t tell you.” he answered knowing it wasn’t going to help them. “But it is imperative I find out what it is."

Narcissa stared at him for a moment. She was studying the lines across his face and the look in his eyes.

“Get away from the mark.” Narcissa gravely said. “There is no information in these books in here that will help you from getting rid of it.”

“Narcissa, please.” Snape whispered.

It wasn’t the painful grasp he gave Narcissa’s arm but the urgency in his voice that made Narcissa turn to him.

“Narcissa, please. I will not be here if it wasn’t important. I wouldn’t be begging you now if it isn’t a matter of life and death. Please. I need to know what this is and how I can undo it.”

“Who casted it?” Narcissa asked him. She looked deeper into Snape’s eyes.

“I don’t know.”

“You need to tell me who casted it.”

“I don’t know. I have no idea who might have casted it-“

“If not him, only a high-ranking Death Eater can cast something as strong as-“

“I don’t know. I have no idea, Narcissa. It was chaos, there were so many spells and-“

“Severus, please, calm down. Focus, tell me who has-“

“I don’t know – there were only few high-ranking Death Eaters-“

“Severus, you have to-“

“It might have been Amycus or even that stupid werewolf and perhaps even Bellatrix-“

Narcissa grabbed his hands and made him face her. She grabbed his face and forced him to focus on him.

“Severus, you need to tell me who it has been casted upon.”

Snape’s black eyes met Narcissa’s blue ones.

He tried to keep it to himself, he tried to let her through his mind.

“Narcissa, I can’t tell you.”

“Severus, if you don’t tell me who this curse has been casted upon I can’t-“

“I can’t tell you-“

“That person will die slowly. Not only will that person die slowly and painfully but that person will also kill everyone who gets in close contact.”

Snape stared at Narcissa as if they have a sudden understanding.

“The Urduja Curse?” Snape slowly asked her with grave worry in his voice.

Narcissa slowly nodded at him. The colour faded from Snape’s face.

“A powerful one. The lines across your drawing – the marks are together – they are usually apart when casted. Bella must have casted it because it is too strong.”

Narcissa held him closer.

“But the Dark Lord has said that..” Snape paused for a moment as if remembering a memory.

Snape shook his head.

“He told me that the incantation is not yet perfect the last time we discussed it. He needed more research, more information from me on this. The Dark Lord wouldn’t use it unless it is perfected and he trusts me to perfect the curse. The information he needs about it is not yet complete as I have not yet handed it to him.”

“The looks of your drawing Severus tells the both of us that the Dark Lord has found a way to perfect the curse and has actually had one of his favourite minions execute it for the first time.”

Narcissa held him closer and firmly pressed his hand. She looked up at Snape’s pale face.

“Tell me who it is.”

“Narcissa..”

“Severus, who was it casted upon?”

Snape stared back at her with hesitation in his eyes.

“You don’t have much time. You can’t undo the curse. Not only it is too powerful but there is no undoing it. It is dark magic therefore it gets stronger over time.”

“The Urduja Curse does have a limit, Narcissa.”

“It depends on the strength of the curse, Severus.”

Snape looked at loss for words. His face was drained of colour.

“Severus, who was damaged by the Urduja curse?”

“Narcissa-“

“You need to tell me. We don’t have much time. We can’t stop it, there is no stopping it. But we can make remedies, we can study if its effect may be limited depending on how strong it has been casted. You’ve help create the beginnings of the enchantment I’m sure we can find a way out of this and a way to break it. I promise I will help you. But you need to work with me, Severus. Tell me now, who has been affected by this deadly curse?”

It took a while for Snape to be shaken back to their conversation. The scariest possibilities were driving his mind at the moment and he looked as if he was going to throw up.

 He has been living with Hermione for almost two weeks now only to find out she has been bounded by a curse almost as deadly as the Killing Curse.

“The Muggle-Born. Granger. Harry Potter’s fiancé.” Snape answered her. “Hermione Granger.”