Spoilers: Season 7 of BtVS (specifically ‘Chosen’); through book 6 of HP and large parts of book 7.
Disclaimer: I own all these characters! Yeah, that’s the ticket! I own all these characters and ALSO the entire planet Earth! Yeah! And I’m expanding outward into other star systems as we speak! Uhh, what was I saying? Oh yeah. I own none of them. What, are you crazy? There is no way I would be allowed to own the works of J.K. Rowling or Joss Whedon.
A/N1: If you’re a H/H shipper, you won’t like this. Move along, move along, nothing to see here… I am sticking with the canon ships of Hermione/Ron and Harry/Ginny for the purposes of this story. Also, if you want character bashing, you’re in the wrong story. If you hate Ron, or you hate Ginny, or you hate Hermione, don’t bother reading any further. Let me reiterate. If you hate ANY of the following: Ron, Hermione, Ginny, Harry, or either of the H/G and R/H ships, then stop. RIGHT NOW.
A/N2: Yes, I had to mess with the timelines to make this start on the right day. C’est la vie.
A/N3: By necessity, I am borrowing a lot of the dialogue from the end of Book 6 and lots of the plot of Book 7, since this story will take a while to go fully AU.
A/N4: All chapter titles after chapter 1 come from Genesis, using the King James version of the Bible. In order, although lots of words in between have been omitted.
Ginny Weasley knew she was about to die, and that it would be the most painful death imaginable.
She was trapped, pinned down helplessly, and at the mercy of Bellatrix Lestrange, a woman who had no compassion whatsoever. She had lost her wand under hundreds of pounds of rocks, and no amount of accio
had been able to summon it. She and Bellatrix were separated from the rest of the fighters, so no one would be coming to her rescue. And Bellatrix looked really, really angry.
It had all seemed so easy when Harry had left a few hours ago. He had given them all of his remaining felix felicis
and asked them to keep watch on the Room of Requirement, in case Malfoy pulled anything. She had figured the three of them, plus a ton of good luck from a luck potion, could easily beat Draco and his two bullyboys. In her opinion, Crabbe and Goyle together had less magical ability than Dennis Creevey, and less smarts than Buckbeak.
But that had been before they found out just how right Harry really was about Malfoy. Draco had led a small army of Death Eaters into the seventh floor of the castle, and blinded the defenders with some of that Peruvian Darkness Powder. She told herself that if she got out of this alive, she would strangle Fred and George and their stupid joke shop. But their luck held, and they escaped that danger with no injuries. And her luck had continued to hold. She had been dueling with the most dangerous woman in Britain, and Bellatrix had yet to hit her with a spell. Ginny had always managed to move in the right direction to avoid getting hit, or throw a protego
at just the right time. It had made her overconfident, and had made Bellatrix furious.
Ginny had found herself completely separated from the other Hogwarts fighters, and Bellatrix had given up on hitting her opponent. That was when the evil bitch had blasted the ceiling apart over Ginny’s head. Tons of stone fragments had come crashing down around her. And, incredibly, she hadn’t been killed. That was the good news. The bad news was that she had lost her wand somewhere under the rubble, and what felt like a couple hundred pounds of rock had landed on her legs. The pain was horrible. At least one of the rocks had a sharp edge that had sliced through her robe and her jeans to rip her calf apart. And that didn’t cover the crushing weight on her legs and hips. She was buried from her butt downward, and she couldn’t move any of the rocks, either. She had tried. Oh Merlin, how she had tried!
Bellatrix strolled up to her, laughing cruelly. “So the ickle baby girl wants to play, does she? Let’s see how she likes playtime now. Crucio
Ginny screamed in agony. She had heard Mad-Eye Moody – well, she thought it was Moody at the time – talk about the Cruciatus Curse, and she had seen his demonstration in class with that spider. She had heard Harry talk about being hit by a couple of Cruciatus Curses by Voldemort. But she had never really understood how unbearably, unbelievably painful it was. It felt as if every nerve in her body was overloading. It felt as if her entire world was nothing but agony. It felt as if she would die from the horrific pain.
She opened her eyes. Her face was flat against the cold stone floor, and she was staring at a pair of black boots peeking out from a black robe. The pain still throbbing relentlessly throughout her body made every movement hurt. She turned her head slightly and saw Bellatrix leering down at her. “Does the wittle bitty girl still wanna play? It’s so simple. I’ll keep using this little curse, over and over and over again, until you beg me to kill you. And then wittle baby will die. And then I’ll go show mummy and daddy what I did to their baby girl, before I kill them too. Do you understand?”
Ginny had never hated anyone so much in her life. If only there was something she could do. If only the felix felicis
could come through with another bit of good luck. If only she could survive this for more than another couple seconds…
Bellatrix lifted her wand. She growled, “Do you understand?”
Ginny forced herself to say, “I understand you’re crazier than the entire staff of the Quibbler
Bellatrix smirked evilly. “That’s not a very nice thing to say… to the woman who’s about to rend the flesh from your bones, a piece at a time.” She pointed her wand.
Ginny silently prayed for some sort of miracle, but she knew the felix felicis
must have run its course. And for all she knew, the after-effect of taking the stuff was a run of horribly bad luck.
She gritted her teeth, awaiting horrific pain.
And suddenly, a voice echoed through her head. A woman’s voice. A woman she had never heard before. A young American woman, by the sound of her.
The voice called out, “Are you ready to be strong?”