Chapter 7 - Nightmares

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They were back at the house in St Lucia. The helicopter waited below to take them to the Muggle airport, on one of the table-top outcroppings within the cluster of other steep, flattened peaks that the property sat perched high upon. Narcissa and Draco came out first. Narcissa was in a mood. It showed in the rigid manner that she held her pale, perfectly powdered face and with the angle of her head that was tilted up into the air even more than normal. They had had another argument. She floated coolly across the large, circular courtyard entrance. She stopped short near the fountain, hissing and looking down. A crevice in the stone paving had caught her graceful high heel and tripped her up. Draco looked at her concernedly, holding her arm to balance her and she smiled at him adoringly, smoothing his short, white-blond hair.

Lucius swaggered out. He was wearing dark shades to block the climbing, mid-morning sun from his burning, bloodshot eyes. He had cut himself shaving and had missed a few places. He had been drinking all night and had just taken 12ml of Euphoria (chased by almost twice as much Digitalis Tincture) to get him through the horrendously long, ordinary plane ride to England. It was probably enough to kill a Wizard twice his weight and that was probably what he had hoped.

He stopped short at the fountain to loosen the collar on his tunic. His chest felt tight. He couldn't feel his face and his vision was starting to blur. It was perhaps too much potion. He wondered if his heart would actually stop right there. It would deny those grunts waiting for him at the Ministry the pleasure. He hoped it would hurry up if it was going to happen; it would be more convenient (and less embarrassing) if it happened before they got on the plane. His chest was burning from acid build-up, from the intense anxiety, potion taking and drinking on an empty stomach. He wavered forward, grabbing the foot of the statue of an angel in the fountain to stop himself falling in. He belched loudly, rubbing his sore stomach as he clung to the angel's foot overhead. It looked like he would vomit into the fountain for a moment. Narcissa looked at him with antipathy, clearly disgusted, and strolled off coolly down the path with Draco, who couldn't even look at him.

Then they were there near the helicopter. Then the crashing hurricane wind came. Rocks. Dust. At first it seemed like it must have just been the aircraft starting up, but its blades were motionless. And then the helicopter was hit by something! Its side caved-in like an aluminium drinks can and the whole thing went careering off the side of the peak. Suddenly there were people there: Mercenaries firing. They didn't have wands. He grabbed Narcissa and pulled her behind him. Draco ran off and as he dodged wandfire, slipped, scuttling over the peak – rolling and rolling down the rocky, verdant hillside. He cast a few hexes, but they were too weak with the collar they had put on him, to hold off that kind of heavy wandfire. And he couldn't aim (he could hardly feel his arms). His vision was blurred. He couldn't see well enough to react! The guards were all dead, or knocked out. They hit Narcissa in the back with a hex; the armour enchantments that had been cast over both her and Draco were very strong and protected her, but she went flying backwards almost off the peak. Unluckily, he had refused the armour because it was too constricting for the flight. He knew he was a dead Wizard. The Mercenaries hit them again and again, but somehow, by some weird stroke of fortune (or more than likely because the mercenaries were so impotent) they kept missing him.

It was so fast, but it all seemed like it was happening in slow motion...

Then they were gone. And it was quiet. And he held Narcissa. She was in shock and pain from the impacts of the deflected curses, but it was over...

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