Disclaimer: I want to be JKR. However, I am not,
so only the words belong to me.
A/N: I wrote this story at approximately 5:00 AM, July 18th,
when I was all depressed from finishing HBP. Thanks to all who read and beta-ed
this – Darker Rage, Ara Kane, and BeatriceEagle from the beginning. Or more, I
can’t remember. Love to Devi and Hematite, and congrats for getting on SQ
before I did!
The wind roared against the desolate, empty
land. Rain with the force of malicious bludgers hurtled down from the desolate
sky, beating anything that happened to be out that night until they were black
and blue all over. This, of course, meant that no one was out that night. That
is… no one in his right mind.
This did not include a dark, cloaked figure hunched against
the wind, hugging the cloak about him tighter and resolutely turning to face
his destination and take up the grueling walk again.
Little did the traveler know that someone was watching his
progress, someone whom he would prefer not to meet. This person, the only other
one out and about on this night, was called Lord Voldemort; and anyone in his
right mind would be keen on avoiding him and his wrath. And, unfortunately for
the traveler, Lord Voldemort was in a particularly wrathful mood.
Swiftly and silently, Lord Voldemort pursued the fleeing
figure. Despite many glances back over his shoulder, the cloaked man braving
the weather did not see his pursuer. He was not supposed to. Powerful magic
cloaked Lord Voldemort, obscuring him from anyone who might glance that way.
Indeed, there was only one person in the world who would have been able to see
him at that moment, and this person was busy running a school.
Finally, Lord Voldemort caught up with his prey. “Igor Karkaroff,”
he said in greeting – or warning, it was impossible to tell.
After gasping and jumping like a fish out of water, the man
named Igor Karkaroff flung himself down in the mud at Lord Voldemort’s feet,
ignoring the fact that dirty water was seeping though his once-fine furs and
chilling him to the bone.
“Master . . . Master, forgive me!” he croaked, weeping and
pleading as a small child does when fearing a terrible punishment.
“Crucio!” Lord Voldemort screamed, a high, cold
screech. Karkaroff writhed and screamed and howled as if he were on fire.
Lord Voldemort stood tall, his pale face just visible under
his hood, and gazed down at the pathetic figure prostrate upon the ground. “You
think I will forgive you, Karkaroff? You think I will forgive your feeble, yet
strangely effective, efforts to save your own skin by putting my faithful
followers in Azkaban? And then not answering my summons, my first summons in
thirteen years, and running away like the little gormless worm that you are?
You could not even attempt to face me that first night, to believe that I had
risen again. And you think I will forgive you for that?” Throughout the entire
speech, his voice had risen in pitch and volume, and had grown even more cold
“Master . . . Master . . .” Karkaroff continued to say in a
weak voice, panting slightly.
“You think wrong.” Lord Voldemort’s words held a lot of
power in them, and the power in those three words did not bode well for Igor
Karkaroff. Indeed, Lord Voldemort raised his wand high, and screamed again. “Crucio!”
It was sick to watch the scene on the moor. It was sick to
watch someone stand over a man and cause him unendurable pain. It was sick to
watch that man roll around on the ground and scream as though his heart were
being wrenched out of his body.
Finally, the torture stopped and Lord Voldemort’s hard voice
came again. “You made a mistake, Karkaroff, and I do not tolerate mistakes. You
do know what is coming next, don’t you?”
“Death.” It was less than a whisper.
Then Karkaroff redoubled his efforts to beg his master to
let him live. “Master, I have made a mistake, I know, but I can fix it. I will
serve you better. I’ve been close to the Ministry of Magic for years; I have
information that would be valuable to you, and I could get more… Master,
please! I could help the remaining Death Eaters escape from Askaban! I could be
a great asset to you, Master. Please, Master, please.”
All he got in return for his groveling was a sneer, and an
icy look. “No, your mistake is too big to repair. And you will have to pay . .
Karkaroff gasped and then began to sob. Voldemort raised his
wand again. “Avada Kedavra!”
There was a flash of brilliant green light, and Igor
Karkaroff was no more.