The Sugar Quill
Author: MrTibbles  Story: MORSMORDRE: A Death Eater's Tale  Chapter: Chapter Two
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The distribution of this story is for personal use only. Any other form of distribution is prohibited without the consent of the author.

DISCLAIMER: The Harry Potter world and characters belong to J

DISCLAIMER: The Harry Potter world and characters belong to J.K. Rowling. I am not JK Rowling. (Duh) I'm not making any money from this, this is merely amusement. Yada yada yada. You get it.  


A/N: Again, thanks to my wonderful Beta readers, Wombat and Iviolinist. Couldn't do it without you guys. A billion thanks to Jo for creating all of this. And thanks to anybody that has reviewed my story or will review this; the feedback is greatly appreciated.  



A Death Eater's Tale. . .

by MrTibbles



   At the entrance to the castle, a man with dull, thin hair and a sour look on his face stood holding a paddle-like object aloft. A long line of students waited in front of him. As each one approached the door, he passed the paddle over their robes. The paddle crackled and squeaked, after which he shoved each student inside the doors. As he jabbed one boy, the paddle began to shake and wail with earsplitting ferocity.


   "Empty your pockets!" the man cried triumphantly.


   "I havenít got anything, Filch." The boy, a third year, looked nervous and tried to push past the man.


   "My Secrecy Sensor never lies, boy!" the man seized the boyís tie and pulled him away from the door. "Empty your pockets!" Without waiting for a reaction, the man thrust his hand into the boyís robes pocket ("Hey!") and pulled out a small bag of grenade-like objects.


   "Dungbombs!" the man exclaimed with distaste. His grimace morphed into an evil grin as he threw the bag into a sack that lay beside him. "None of these in my school this year." The boy frowned and walked into the school reluctantly, muttering to himself. The line moved slowly, with occasional outbursts of protest from those in front. When David reached the head of the line, the paddle wailed again. David smiled mischievously as he pulled a pink heart-shaped bottle out of his pocket.


     "It's for Myrtle, sir," he said, coughing to cover his laughter. Filch seized the bottle and frowned as he held it up to the light.


     "A love potion wouldn't set off my Secrecy Sensor, Wellington," he growled.


     "Well . . . er. . . it is a bit of a secret," David fought to keep a straight face. Barty wondered how long he had been planning this. Filch glowered at David and threw the love potion into his sack, shoving him into the castle.


   "Next!" he growled and Barty stepped forward, trying desperately to swallow his laughter. Behind Filch's back, David pulled a bag of dungbombs out of his other pocket and winked. Barty, Edith and Bryan all passed by Filch without incident and the four walked confidently over to the Great Hall. The Great Hall was bursting with students greeting each other loudly and warmly as they found seats at their respective House tables under the watchful eye of the Hogwarts Professors, who sat at a long table at the head of the Hall. At the center of the table, a tall old man with shoulder-length white hair and a matching beard sat in a large gilded chair and gazed down his nose at the students, his eyes twinkling behind half-moon shaped glasses.


   Barty and his friends lingered by the doors of the Hall. They looked out over the younger studentsí heads as the crowd in the Great Hall slowly began to be seated. "I wish we could skip the Sorting," David said, shaking his unruly curls out of his face.


   "You know we canít," Edith said, sighing.


   "Well, technically, we could," David said with a joking air, "but that would land us in detention."


   "Iím afraid I donít fancy a detention this early in the term," Edith said playfully.


   "Iíll drink to that," Barty added and they all laughed.


   "Dumbledore is standing up," Bryan noted. "We should go sit down."


   They walked over to the Slytherin table. When the occupants saw them coming, four seats quickly appeared at the center of the table. As they sat down, they were greeted by eager smiles and whispered greetings. Barty nodded nobly at his admirers as Dumbledore gestured toward the doors of the Hall. Professor McGonagall walked briskly into the hall with her lips set tight. She was followed by a large group of children who looked around the hall with wide eyes, looking scared out of their wits.


   Barty sighed and rolled his eyes; the Sorting was so boring. He looked up at the enchanted ceiling, watching as a cloud moved across the sky. A small tug at his robes jerked him back to reality. He whipped his head around, but there was no one behind him. All of the people around him were staring intently at the front of the Hall. What on Earth . . . Barty thought, furrowing his brow.


   "What are you looking for, ickle Crouch?" A mocking voice whispered in his ear. Barty closed his eyes; he knew that voice. He knew that voice all too well. Bellatrix . . . Bellatrix Lestrange . . . "Have you made a decision?"


   "Why are you here?" Barty whispered. He looked anxiously around, but no one had heard him. He noted that the Sorting Hat had begun to sing.


   "Recruiting," Bellatrix answered simply.


   "Invisibility Cloak?" he asked nervously.


   "Naturally," she answered. "Have you made a decision?" she repeated.


   "Yes, but -" he glanced around again, but everyone was still focused on the Sorting. "We canít talk now," he whispered. "Do you remember where the portrait of Helga the Haggard is?"




   "Right after the feast."


   "Donít be late, little Crouch. I do not have time for teenage pranks. Iím sure there are older, more qualified wizards -"


   "Iíll be there," Barty cut her off. If she replied, Barty didnít hear her, due to the tumultuous applause that rang through the hall. ĎOlder, more qualified, wizards,í Barty scoffed at the idea. What right has she to say that I am not worthy? Iíll show her. Iíll show all of them. Iíll show . . . Him. Barty gulped involuntarily at the thought of the Dark Lord.


   ". . .itís done better, I think," Barty jumped at the whispering before realizing that it was David. Get a hold of yourself, Crouch, he told himself sternly.


   "Yeah," he whispered, nodding.


   "Aberson, Sylvia," McGonagall called, reading from her list of names which Barty noted was unusually long this year.


   "Here we go again," David said, sighing.


   "HUFFLEPUFF!" cried the hat. Applause erupted at the table along the opposite wall. Barty sighed and again began his examination of the ceiling. The cloud was now inching toward the moon.


   "SLYTHERIN!" cried the hat. Barty clapped halfheartedly and returned his attention to the cloud. Slowly it floated toward the moon. Barty cheered it on, thinking that if only that little cloud touched the moon, everything would be all right. Suddenly, as if reacting to his thought, the cloud began to move down, and Barty realized it was going around the moon. He crossed his arms across his chest and stared dejectedly at his goblet.


   At long last, after ĎWyatt, Rodneyí had been sorted, Dumbledore stood up. "Welcome, students, to another year!" he said, his eyes twinkling merrily. "However, I feel that the best time to listen to speeches is on a full stomach, so letís eat!" As he said the last two words, the platters along the House Tables were suddenly filled with food. A few of the first years gasped, but the older students just smiled and dug into the food.


   Barty wasnít hungry. He stared at his empty plate.


   "Are you going to eat something?" Bryan asked as he reached for a second chicken leg.


   "Iím not hungry."


   "Are you all right, mate?"


   "Iím fine," Barty snapped. Bryan eyed him suspiciously , but accepted Bartyís answer and returned to his food.


   Barty wished momentarily that he hadnít snapped at Bryan, but he was not going to take it back. He reached for his pumpkin juice and took a quick sip. He set it down and began to mentally prepare for his future conversation with Bellatrix.


   ĎWhat is your decision?í His mental image of Bellatrix was quite beautiful, Barty noted.


   ĎWhen and where?í His mental self answered, calm and cool.


   ĎYou speak boldly, child.í


   ĎNo, I speak simply. Who would dare stand up to the Dark Lord?í


   ĎSo you are a coward, then?í


   ĎNo. That may be a reason for some to join Him, but it is not mine,í Barty doubted that he would be so confident in reality.


   ĎThe Dark Lord awaits your service. Long has he noted your exceptional talent -í


   Barty shook the image away. That, he thought, admonishing himself, was a bit far-fetched. He was disgusted by his own vanity. He looked up at his surroundings and realized that Dumbledore was talking.


   "-On that note, I bid you all a good night!" The hall was full of the deafening sound of scraping benches as the students got up and headed toward the doors. Barty stood up and began to follow the rest of the students.


   "Crouch!" A voice from behind Barty stopped him.


   "What?" he snapped.


   "Do you know the password?" A slightly chubby boy with black hair looked back at Barty. It was Harrison, the sixth year Slytherin prefect.


   "No. Go ask Slughorn."


   "Thatís your job. Youíre the senior prefect."


   Bartyís eyes narrowed in annoyance, and he rose to his full height. He towered above Harrison, who shrank somewhat under his icy glare. Before Barty could say anything, the other sixth year prefect, a girl with mousy brown hair, (Barty couldnít recall her name) ran over to them and said, eagerly, "No, no! Itís all right; Iíve already asked Slughorn!" She grinned up expectantly at Barty, who shot her a look of contempt.


     "Have you, then?"


   She nodded eagerly.


   "Well, what is it?" he snapped sharply. Her broad smile shrunk slightly and she looked at her feet.


   "Oh, itís . . . itís . . . "


   "You forgot it already?" Barty growled impatiently.


   "Oh, no!" She blushed. "Itís venomous tentacula! Iím sorry. It slipped my mind."


   Barty rolled his eyes and walked away. He had bigger things to attend to. "Where are you going?" Harrison asked accusingly.


   "To the common room," Barty said. I thought that was rather obvious . . .


   "What he means is, why arenít you helping with the first years?" A much lower voice said from behind Barty. "You are a prefect, are you not, Crouch?"


   Barty knew that voice. His hands clenched into fists as he turned around to face Chris Smith, who was smirking confidently. "I was leading the way, Smith," he said icily. "Surely that was apparent."


   "Of course," Smith said mock-pleasantly. "I was only ensuring that you were attending to your duties." He walked away with a peculiar bounce in his step. Barty watched through narrowed eyes as he returned to his large group of Gryffindor friends.


   "Well!" he snapped. "Letís take the bloody midgets to the common room!" He stomped off toward the doors of the Great Hall. He pushed past a group of third years and even walked through the Bloody Baron in his haste. Shivering from the blast of icy cold, he hurried off in the direction of the Slytherin common room. After few minutes, he stopped and looked behind him. Nobody was coming. He took his wand out of his pocket and tapped a nearby doorknob.


   "Alohomora," he whispered. The lock clicked and he quickly slipped inside the empty classroom. He shut the door behind him and pressed his ear up against it. He heard footsteps and tensed.


   "Where did he go?" Barty heard Harrison ask.


   "I donít know," A soft girlís voice said. Barty recognized it as that of Alicia Lee, the other seventh year prefect. "Maybe heís waiting for us at the Common Room."


   "Heíd better be," Harrison said gruffly.


   Iíd like to hear you say that to my face, Barty thought. He heard the sound of numerous feet slapping against the stone floor and scattered conversation truncated by laughter. As the sounds grew fainter, Barty relaxed. After a few minutes of silence, he quietly opened the door and slipped out into the corridor. 


   Bartyís feet were eerily quiet as he hurried down the corridor. He wound his way through the halls, hardly noticing the few people he passed. He picked up speed as he neared the corridor where Helga the Haggard hung. His heart raced, thumping so loudly that Barty worried it might wake the sleeping inhabitants of the surrounding portraits.


   Before Barty turned down the corridor where Helga hung, (and Bellatrix would be waiting) he stopped and leaned against the wall. He took slow, deep breaths and tried to slow his heart. I canít look nervous, he thought anxiously. As his breathing slowly returned to normal, Barty righted his robes and tugged at the tie around his neck. He ran his fingers through his hair and checked twice that his shoelaces were tied. Wishing that he had a mirror, Barty took a deep breath and turned the corner.


   As he had expected, the corridor was empty. He looked about nervously. Loud snoring echoed from the painting of a destitute-looking medieval woman.


   "Show yourself, Bellatrix," Barty said shortly.


   "Didnít your mother ever teach you manners, boy?" Barty couldnít tell where the voice was coming from. He looked anxiously around, but the corridor was still empty. "You should use titles of respect when addressing your elders."


   Barty detested being treated like a child. "Very well," he said sarcastically. "Madam Death Eater, will you please reveal yourself, that we may have a conversation?"


   Bellatrixís laughter filled the corridor, and she appeared in front of Barty.


   "You amuse me, Crouch," she said. Barty could not deny that she was beautiful. His thoughts strayed, however, to the image of a different girl with long dark hair. He locked the thought away in his mind. If Bellatrix used Occlumency against him, that was the last thing he wanted her to see.


   "You are easily amused, then," he snapped.


   "Indeed." She clicked her tongue. "Well, we must proceed to the intended topic of our little meeting." She let the Invisibility Cloak fall to the floor and walked closer to Barty. He smelled expensive perfume as she drew near. Her dark eyes bored into his own.


   "Why the Dark Lord has any interest in you is beyond my comprehension," she began. Barty stiffened. I donít have to take this; not from her. "I can only assume that it must have something to do with your father." Her lips turned up at the ends, but he couldnít call her expression a smile.


   "I certainly hope so," Barty said. Well, it would be a perk . . . 


   Bellatrix raised her eyebrows at him. "Good, good," she said, rolling her eyes. "Can you Apparate?"




   "Good. Do you know where the Malfoy Manor is?"


   "Of course."


   "Midnight- on the fifteenth. Two weeks."


   "Iíll be there."


   "You had better be," she sniffed. "The Dark Lord will know if you are truly serious."


   "He wonít be disappointed," Barty said confidently.


   Bellatrix laughed; her laughter rang out through the corridor so loudly that Barty worried someone would come investigate it. She picked up the cloak at her feet.


   "Iíll see you next Saturday, then," she said as she disappeared from sight.


   Barty held his breath as he walked away. Is she following me? He snuck a glance over his shoulder. What are you expecting to see? If sheís following you she wonít be visible! Bartyís unease lingered. It wasnít until he reached the stairway that led to the common room that he finally gasped for air.


   Maybe sheís right about you, a nasty voice said in the back of his head. Maybe you are just a coward.


   "No," said Barty softly. He reached a stretch of bare stone wall. "Venomous Tentacula," he muttered and the wall slid away, revealing a long room filled with an eerie green light. A fire crackled in the in the fireplace, but the chairs surrounding it were empty. He heard the scraping of stone on stone as the wall slid shut. The dim light of the common room had a calming effect on Barty.


   Barty yawned and strode over to the winding staircase in the left corner of the room. He slowly climbed the stairs, suddenly realizing how tired he felt. At the top he turned left and entered the dormitory he had slept in for the past seven years. He noticed that it had a new sign nailed above the door, which read ĎSeventh Yearsí in ornate script.


   Barty collapsed on his four-poster bed. Bryanís snores echoed through the room. Barty looked up at the ceiling. A few soft rays of moonlight illuminated the initials he had carved there in his third year. Barty slid his hand along the headboard until he found the scorch mark from a duel he and David had fought in their fifth year. Sighing, he rolled over onto his side and a dreamless, peaceful sleep came easily.

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