Date: October 28, 2012. Time: 0900. Location: Somewhere in Nevada
That infernal grin. And that sickening cackling. I won’t go away. I won’t stop. It’s been incessant since this all started; day, night, it doesn’t matter. That smile of shattered rotten teeth and dead eyes filled with blazing hellfire…
“Harry.” The slap across his face is quick and hard leaving his cheek tingling.
“What was that for?”
“What was that for?” Throwing his hands up in frustration the exasperated Ron turns towards Hermione, “You deal with him. I can’t.” Her eyes go from the man she loves to her constant companion, the man they both feel compelled to protect.
“Harry where have you been?”
“I was here.”
“Yes, your body was but your mind… It was definitely somewhere else. Do you remember where?”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about. I also don’t see what all the fuss is about. So I didn’t hear Ron. So what.”
“So what?” Frustration edging towards anger drips from Ron, “We’ve been trying to get your attention for 3 hours!” The words hit Harry like a sucker punch.
“You’ve been out of it Harry. Totally unresponsive. We’ve tried everything; splashing you with water, shaking you, loud noises.” The pity in her eyes leaking into her voice.
“Finally I slapped you.” The anger replaced with sadness and a touch of guilt.
“I’m sorry Hermione. I’m sorry Ron. I really am. I don’t… I don’t know what came over me.”
Ron places his hand on the shoulder of his best friend, “It’s okay Harry we’re here for you. You’ve just gotta tell us what’s going on. We need to know. We deserve to know. And… I’m sorry I hit you.”
“You’re right Ron.”
“Then let us help you.”
“It’s… It’s the Necrinomicon.”
“You know very well that it’s more then just a ‘book’ Ron.” Irritation spilling over into his voice.
“Okay man. So what about it?”
“I think it’s responsible for all this.”
“Well maybe not all of it but definitely something.” Looking at his friends he can sense their apprehension. “Do you remember when this all started back at the ___?”
“Of course. How could we forget Harry?” Hermione asks incredulously.
“Well when we went back to the room and got it I opened the box.”
“You did what?” The anger back in Ron’s voice.
“I looked at it. It was, awake. Smiling even. It hasn’t stopped. It’s burned into my mind. When I close my eyes there it is. And now even when I’m awake I see it.” He anxiously locks eyes with Hermione, “That’s where I was. Watching it. It just grins and now… Now it’s laughing.”
“The book laughs?” interrupts Ron, doubt plain on his face.
“No not the Necrinomicon. It’s something in the background. Something sinister. I don’t quite know how to explain it. But I swear it’s real. Even now I can here it in the background. Can’t you?” Ron and Hermione look at one another then back at Harry. Ron speaks up first, “Sure man, we hear it.” The relief on Harry’s face is all the reward they need for the white lie. “Give us a second will you Harry?”
“I’m not crazy.”
“No one is saying you are.”
“I’m not crazy. I’m telling the truth.”
“It’s okay buddy we believe you we just need to take a second to talk about where we go next.” The pair walk hand in hand across the wrecked hotel suite, sure that Harry won’t overhear their conversation, “He’s getting worse Hermione.”
“How many pills do we have left?”
“6-7 days max and that’s at half doses.”
“That’s not good.”
“No. It’s not.”
“We’ve gotta find more.”
“Yes Ron I know we do.”
“Hey.” He places his hand on her cheek making sure they make eye contact, “I’m not the enemy.” She places her hand over his nuzzling into the warmth of his strong fingers. “I know Ron. I’m not frustrated with you, just all of this. The world is falling apart at the seems. There are zombies eating people, tearing them limb from limb everywhere we go. And Harry, he’s losing his grip on this reality and there is nothing we can do.”
“Stop right there. As long as Harry has us that won’t happen. As for what to do, there has to be a pharmacy or a clinic we haven’t searched yet.”
“You know those things are always at them. Every single one we’ve been to. It’s almost like they are waiting for us.”
“True, but that just means we keep doing what we do, killing zombies and finding meds.” He looks deep into her eyes, “We’re in this together, all of us. We’ll help Harry like we always do.” Her smile is all he needs. As he is about to turn back to his friend muttering across the room from them he feels her hand in his, “Ron?” He turns, “Yes.” The kiss catches him off guard but he gives into it. Their arms circling one another. Holding each other a reassuring strength spreads between them. Slowly they pull away from one another. Ron looks down at his love, “We’re in this together never forget that. Now let’s get back to Harry.” They turn back towards the former Vegas legend, a magician and illusionist of the highest caliber now sitting on a dirty couch knees pulled up to his chest, arms pulling them in close, muttering over and over, “The Old Ones are not happy. The Necrinomicon is.”
Categories: Other Factions Chapters