*Disclaimer-I own none of the characters in this story, nor do I own
the Forbidden Forest. They all belong to the genius that is J.K Rowling.*
I shouldn't have gone out there. Tromping through the
forest, being dragged through mud and moss, none of this is what I wanted to be
doing so close to dark. Still, I had to see it. The place sounded too
powerful to be fully explained in words. So, I asked Ginny to take me into the
Forbidden Forest and show it to me. Upon first glance of the spot, my
assumptions were confirmed; this place was magical as could be.
The whole section seemed oddly troubling and serene at the same
time. A thick cloudy mist hung lazily in the air as if it had always been
there and planned on always being there. Several meters ahead, there was a
large, knotted stump that lay peacefully, using a plaque atop it as a blanket.
I had heard about this; Dumbledore had it put there in remembrance just days
before he died. I had never seen it before, though. I dared not linger on it
too much, though, for Ginny was still in front of me, still as the shade.
"This is the spot?" I asked already knowing the
answer. She nodded minutely. "Gin, if it makes you uncomfortable…"
"No," she said quicker than I expected, "I want
to stay. I'll be fine."
She was right, too. It only took her a minute to clear her face
and start pointing things out. There was a black ring of leaves and moss
stamped into the Earth where the students had been led to be murdered. Ginny
pointed out the thirteen spots in the ring that were paler than the others;
those had places where students had died.
"Notice," she explained, "the stump at the top of
the circle. That's no ordinary stump. It grew after the fall of Voldemort,
but never to a full tree. It stopped where it is right now. Dumbledore said
this whole area was magically preserved that night, with each spot holding its
own power. The stump holds the most power of all. Hence, the plaque."
Ah yes, the plaque. Slowly and in awe I crept closer to it. I
knelt next to the stump to read the inscription: "May it forever be
remembered that in this spot great sacrifices were made in order to protect the
shedding of innocent blood. May good always triumph over evil, and may the
names below serve as a reminder of the one glorious day it did." Agape, I
read each name silently. Some of them were unfamiliar to me. I've heard about
Gregory Sniper of Ravenclaw, but I left before he even entered the school.
Other names, like the Creevey brothers, brought back memories as clear as
photographs. The very last name, however, gave me the oddest shiver down my
spine. At the bottom of the inscription in larger print was the name of the
only Slytherin who died that day: Draco Malfoy.
"That's the spot where Malfoy died. Killed by his own
father. Of course, EVERYBODY knows that story. You're lucky, though. You
didn't see it. Y'know, I wrote that inscription. Dumbledore asked me to do
it. Felt it to be proper, seeing as I kept so many people alive. After what
Malfoy did for all of us, for me, I couldn't say no. If he hadn't died, I
wouldn't be alive. Weird feeling, having the one person you hate most save
your life. I understand how Snape felt now..." Ginny said, quickly
growing silent afterwards. I knew how Malfoy got in the way of the curse meant
for Snape. By that night, Snape had finally gotten his wish to be the Defense
Against the Dark Arts teacher, and he was out to prove he deserved the job that
night. Surprisingly enough, little Draco aided him a bit; Lucius flipped when
he realized what he had done. This gave Snape enough time to counterattack,
and Ginny enough time to signal the DA members to strike. Of course, Snape
died just an hour later after a brutal werewolf attack. Three of them
surrounded him and tore into him. He was lucky enough to have Lupin fighting
off one of them, but he was still no match for two werewolves. It almost made
Malfoy's death seem in vain. The accepted opinion is that Draco's death was
accidental, but every witness I've talked to claims he got did it on purpose.
I wasn't about to press Ginny on it.
"Gin..." I said, trying to bring her back to reality,
"We really should go. It's getting rather dark and...sweet Merlin! Run
for your life, Ginny!"
The sight in front of me was the last thing I wanted to see. A
giant, mangy werewolf was standing directly in front of me, teeth bared and
looking hungry. I went to run, but, naturally, I tripped over the stump,
giving the werewolf enough time to pounce on top of me, pressing me hard
against the ground. Well, this is it. In less than ten seconds, my life as a
normal witch would be over. I looked over my shoulder to get a good glimpse of
Ginny. Oddly enough, she was just standing there, laughing.
"Alicia, you never cease to amaze me!" she managed
through the giggles.
"Ginny, this isn't funny. Go, save yourself!" I
commanded. I was getting really nervous; why hadn't I been bitten yet?
"Oh, stop being such a prat, Alicia."
"Look at the eyes!"
Terrified, I looked my aggressor directly in the eye. That's
when I noticed two things. One, this savage beast didn't look like he wanted
to attack me at all, just hold me still. Two, those eyes, those weary yet
strangely familiar eyes...
As he lifted his giant paws off of my back, a sudden relief
flooded my face. I would get to see another day as a normal witch. Starring
at the shaggy Lupin, whose fur was now glowing by moonlight, I began to really
feel the true aura in his presence and my surroundings.