Summer of Terror Chapter 1
|A big thank you goes to my beta-reader Axelle. Without her this story
would have been full of silly mistakes, crappy lines and poor Hedwig would
have been doomed to spend a whole year with the Dursleys.
SUMMER OF TERROR
CHAPTER 1: FIRST SIGNS OF THE SECOND WAR
Something was ticking against the window. The light of the morning sun was
trying to shine through the closed curtains. Harry woke up from a night filled
with nightmares about burning buildings. The ticking against the window had
woken him up. He glanced through his room, which was lit by the sun. It seemed
to be a wonderful summer day.
In Harrys mind things were less sunny than outside in the garden. He
was stuck here, at Privet Drive with the Dursleys and he was hoping to return
to the wizarding world soon. His friends from Hogwarts had promised him that
they would invite Harry this vacation.
Really soon, Harry. We promise, Hermione had said last time when
he left Kings Cross Station.
He had been two weeks with the Dursleys now and hadnt had much contact
with his friends since the end of last term. He had gotten two owls. One was
from Hermione, saying that she was staying with her parents most of the summer,
as she wanted to make up with them for ditching them on last Christmas
skiing-trip. There was also an owl from Ron, who seemed quite disappointed about
spending most of the vacation alone at Grimmauld Place in London. Ron wrote
that he had hoped Hermione would join him, but now he was there most of the
time alone with Ginny and Mrs. Weasley. Fred and George had moved out to work
in their shop. They had an apartment on number ninety-three, Diagon Alley. It
was right above Weasleys Wizarding Wheezes Shop.
Thinking of this letter made Harry think of 12 Grimmauld Place and thinking
of Grimmauld Place made him think of the time he spent there with Sirius. He
still missed Sirius with all his heart and one side of him hoped to visit Grimmauld
Place again, in memory of Sirius. On the other side, he feared going there
the pain and the loss might be too much. He felt he needed to talk about Sirius,
but he could not do so. The Dursleys, of course, would probably just be plain
rude. In the past, if he had problems, he would write Sirius, but that was,
of course, no longer an option as Sirius was dead. He could write Lupin, but
since it was Lupin who first tried to convince Harry that Sirius had died, he
didnt really like Lupin as much as he used to do. He knew, of course,
that it wasnt Lupins fault. If it was anyones fault, Harry
felt it was his own. The loss was easier to carry if he could somehow be a bit
angry with someone, instead of himself.
Again something ticked against the window Harry had entirely forgotten
that it was this ticking sound which woke him up in the first place. He got
up and opened the window, stroking the owl which was drawing attention by tapping
the window with its beak. The bird dropped a copy of the Daily Prophet and
flew away. Harry took the newspaper and his eye fell on an advertisement for
the new Nimbus 2002 which covered the full back page. Harry smiled. But his
smile faded when he turned the newspaper around and saw the front page. His
heart flipped over. A huge picture of the Dark Mark hovering over a burning
house stood in the centre of the front page. The picture reminded him of the
picture in the Daily Prophet on the day after the Quidditch World Cup
final, two years ago.
HE WHO MUST NOT BE NAMED BEGINS TOTAL WAR
DEATH EATERS STRIKE TWICE
Last night the homes of two wizarding families fell prey to the Death Eaters,
a group of wizards who are loyal followers of recently returned You-Know-Who.
It appears that You-Know-Who, who has worked in secrecy for the past year, has
declared a total and open war upon the wizarding world. Last night his Death
Eaters openly attacked the homes of two pure-blood wizarding families.
The first target was the home of the Lovegood-family. Paul Lovegood is famous
as owner and editor of The Quibbler magazine. Lovegood and his teen-aged
daughter were absent during the attack and they so escaped injury or worse.
They are said to be spending the summer in Sweden, in a search for the mythical
The second target was the family of Ministry of Magic employee Arthur Weasley.
The whereabouts of the Weasley family are unknown, but the Daily Prophet
has learned that the family has not been at their home, The Burrow, since the
beginning of the summer vacation at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry,
which is attended by the two youngest of Weasleys seven children. It has
been confirmed that, in spite of his unknown place of residence, Weasley does
attend his work at the Ministry as normal. It seems that the Weasleys, just
like the Lovegoods, have escaped the attack, by not being at their homes last
Both homes, which are located in roughly the same area, have been completely
burned down and have been marked with the Dark Mark, the symbol of You-Know-Who.
At present it is unknown if both attacks were random or whether the Lovegoods
and Weasleys have been targeted for a specific purpose by He who must not be
It seems that no one was injured or killed in these first strikes and we can
only hope no one ever will.
Harry read the article with his mouth hanging open; he was stunned. The Burrow
burned down? That couldnt be true. He instantly thought of the Weasleys.
He was glad none of them was home during the attack; they were all at Grimmauld
Place, as Ron had written. The Weasleys were always so kind, and yet so poor.
Could they afford a new house? Harry guessed not. Where would they go and live
now then? He could almost see Mrs. Weasley worrying over the loss of The Burrow,
and Mr. Weasley looking depressed.
Harry look at the burned house in the picture. He did not recognize the remains
and its surroundings. It must have been the house of the Lovegoods. He clearly
remembered how he met Luna Lovegood roughly a year ago in the Hogwarts
Express and how she had joined Harry, Ron, Hermione, Ginny and Neville in an
attempt to rescue Sirius at the Ministry of Magic, and how they all stumbled
into a trap which had been setup by Lord Voldemort.
That trap had only worked because Harry and Voldemort could sense each others
emotions, and sometimes even each others minds. Harry clearly recalled
how he had seen through Voldemorts eyes a few times before. Suddenly Harry
realized where last nights nightmare came from. Perhaps Voldemort himself
was at the attacks. They werent a coincidence the dreams had come
to him because of the burnings by Voldemorts followers last night.
With his mind on the attack of the Death Eaters, Harry got dressed. He felt
he had to write to Ron, to say how horrible he felt about it, to show sympathy,
but he could not think of the right words to say it. It could wait until after
breakfast. And so Harry went downstairs, with his mind still on the burned remains
of The Burrow.
Harry sat down at breakfast; all three Dursleys were already in the kitchen
when he arrived. Uncle Vernon did not look up from his plate when he spoke to
We will be out today, boy, he said. You know the rules: dont
touch the television, dont touch the fridge, dont touch anything
at all, and no funny stuff.
Where are you going? Harry asked.
Dudleys going to pay another visit to Doctor Schnauzenberger,
And that is your fault boy! bellowed Uncle Vernon. If it
werent for your abnormalities, Dudley would be perfectly fine. And now
his school makes us send him to some shrink as if he is a madman!
Harry couldnt help but smile slightly. Dudley had been depressed ever
since he encountered a couple of Dementors last year. Although the effect caused
by Dementors was unpleasant, it usually wore off after eating some chocolate.
Harry had two theories about it. He guessed that it kept affecting Dudley longer
because he was a Muggle - although it was more likely that Dudley was mere acting
as he liked the extra gifts his parents bought him to cheer him up. Not too
long ago Dudley was given a shiny red moped. Dudley could probably easily keep
up with Doctor Schnauzenberger with the expectation of gifts in return.
After breakfast the Dursleys left. Harry went to his room, sat behind his desk
and took out some parchment and a quill. He wrote:
Right there he stopped. He wanted to show the Weasleys some support now that
their house was burned down, but he could not think of a good way to put it
on paper. Although his eyes were pointing towards the parchment, he did not
actually see it. In his mind he had visions of the burned house, of Mrs. Weasley
grieving over The Burrow, and Ron and Mr. Weasley being upset.
The doorbell rang. Harry checked his watch and saw that he had been staring
at the parchment for half an hour. The doorbell rang again. Harry went downstairs
and answered the door.
It was a horribly nervous looking Mrs. Figg, an old lady who lived in the neighborhood.
Harry had only learned last year that she was a squib. She had a copy of the
Daily Prophet tight in her hand.
Harry, she asked a bit nervous. Are you alright?
Im fine, said Harry. He was caught a bit off guard. The last
time he had seen Mrs. Figg was when she gave testimony in his favor at a hearing
by the Ministry of Magic, almost a year ago. He was happy to see her. Although
she wasnt a witch, she was the closest thing to the wizarding world that
he had in Privet Drive.
I saw the Dursleys go out, she said. I got an owl from Dumbledore
this morning. I am to make sure you pack all your stuff and get on the Knight
Bus to London as soon as possible.
Am I going to Grimmau
Shhhh! hissed Mrs. Figg, with a finger pressed to her lips. Yes,
you are going there. But there is no need say it aloud! The louder a dragon
roars the more attention it attracts. Do you read the Daily Prophet?
Yes, answered Harry. If it is about The Burrow, I have just
read about that.
Mrs. Figg nodded quietly. Obviously that was why she had brought a copy of
the paper with her. And Harry suspected that it also was the reason Dumbledore
wanted him back at Headquarters. Although he was happy about returning to the
wizarding world, he hated the reason why. He was nervous. The wizarding world
no longer was a happy place, now that Voldemort had openly attacked attacked
the home of Harrys best friend even.
Now, go pack, Mrs. Figg said. I will make sure the Dursleys
know you are away until next summer. And dont forget your Hogwarts stuff,
as you will not come back here for a year.
It took Harry less than one hour to pack everything he needed and meet Mrs.
Figg again downstairs. She was mulling over the Daily Prophets
Are you ready? she asked, folding up the newspaper. You sure
you have packed everything anything? A potion with a forgotten ingredient can
give a serious headache.
Yes, confirmed Harry. Ive got all I need: Hedwig, my
books, my wand, my clothes and my Firebolt.
Although Professor Umbridge had confiscated Harrys high quality Firebolt
broomstick last year, he was given it back when she left Hogwarts at the end
of last term. Harry was glad to have it back, and he never doubted that Professors
McGonagall or Dumbledore would return him his broomstick once Umbridge had left
Hogwarts. All the teachers at the school had found Umbridges rulings disagreeable.
Good, said Mrs. Figg. Wed best be going then. Do you
know how to signal the Knight Bus?
Yes, answered Harry as they both walked outside. Ive
been on it twice before.
On the street Harry signaled with his wand, and seconds later, with a deafening
BANG the purple triple-decker Knight Bus appeared. Harry said goodbye
to Mrs. Figg and stepped onto the bus.
Hi, arry! said conductor Stan, waving at him. Can we
call you by your name this time?
Harry smiled. The first time he had ridden the Knight Bus he had lied and said
that his name was Neville Longbottom. The second time, Harrys friend Tonks,
a member of the Order of the Phoenix, had warned Stan not to say Harrys
name out loud because it might attract unwanted attention from Voldemort or
his Death Eaters.
better not, finished a familiar growling voice. You
never know who is listening. Hell be riding with me, so drop him off at
the same place.
Harry glanced to the direction where the voice came from. Mad-Eye Moody was
sitting on an ancient red kitchen chair with white flowers painted on it. Just
like last time, the Knight Bus was filled with mismatched chairs in daytime.
Harry sat down on a small green stool next to Moody.
Hello, said Moody. Dumbledore has asked me to ride the bus
The Order is still guarding me then, I guess? asked Harry.
Yes, replied Moody. But Dumbledore has lowered your protection
for some reason. He says you dont need it as much right now, but still
he still wants someone to look after you. Arabella has been keeping an eye on
your house all summer. If I didnt have so much trust in Dumbledore, though,
Id say hes out of his mind. Lowering the guard? One should always
Harry and Moody talked the entire ride, but Moody wouldnt tell Harry
much news. He did not say why Dumbledore thought Harrys guard against
Voldemort could be lowered, what Voldemort was up to after the loss of the Prophecy,
a few weeks ago, or anything about last nights attack on The Burrow.
It is better not to discuss these topics on the Knight Bus, Moody