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Chapter 12

Professor Potter rose. "When trouble comes," he began, "I and my wife are going to be occupied. The forces of Darkness will tie us down and keep us from leading the battle. Someone must be chosen who will be in charge, who everyone else will follow. I would like suggestions on who that person should be."
When the professor stopped speaking total silence fell over the hall. Everyone just looked at each other. Then Malfoy rose.
"Mr. Malfoy?" the professor acknowledged.
"Well, we have somebody here," Malfoy began, "who's power has defeated Voldemort twice, he really seems to have a hard time dealing with him even when he outnumbers him ten or better. Everybody knows who I'm talking about, and I think everybody else, no matter how old they are, feels the same way I do. Harry Potter was put here in this dark hour, to overcome this evil. It's take some of us a very long time to recognize that. But many of us have come to see it. If Voldemort attacks Harry should be the one leading the fight, because Harry is the one he fears most, and Harry is the one who will eventually destroy him, I know that! I know that perhaps I am not the one who should be saying this. My father was a death eater. It was Harry's testimony that sent him to prison. But I do not blame Harry for that. I blame Voldemort for that. He was the one that corrupted my father. I say I will follow Harry wherever he leads and I ask everyone else to say likewise."
Ginny rose, and stood beside Malfoy. Then Ron rose, and his companions. Then his brothers rose and slowly everybody in the room rose. At the head of the table Hagrid rose, then, Mrs. Potter, then the headmistress until there was no one seated. The doors opened and the caretaker entered nodding his head. Mr. Potter looked around. "Well!" he remarked, "I'm already standing so I can't stand up! Everyone please be seated. What say you, Harry? This is something that we can't force on someone, and I mean that! A person has to take a position like this of their own free will. If you do not want it simply say so."
Harry stood up. "Who would want it?" he remarked. "I don't think I'm worthy, I don't think anybody could be worthy! But I will do my best. Tell me what needs to be done."
Mr. Potter smiled and came around the table. "You have to start assigning positions, Harry, and this is the first thing you'll have to deal with. These are anchor stones. They need to be charged for ten days, and then boosted every day. When the battle comes they need to be placed at the four corners of the school and activated. They'll operate for ten hours though I don't think they'll be needed for that long. While they're being operated no magical transport will work within a mile of the school. Anyone trying to fly a broom will crash to the ground. Anyone trying to levitate won't get off the ground. Anyone trying to open a portal to teleport will create only sparks. When the attackers are here we don't want them to be able to flee. We want to force them to stand and fight. We need four teams of four to handle this task. Who would you suggest?"
"Oliver!" Harry cried, "Oliver Wood!" Gryffindor's Quidditch captain hurried up. "Yes Harry?" he asked. "Oliver," Harry continued, "I'd like you and the other team captains to handle this effort. Pick your partners. But I want the four of you to be in charge of these stones and to operate them. You understand the principle of flying. You will be the very best to block it!"
"Right, Harry!" Oliver snapped. "Team captains to me!"
"Now there is the matter of security in the buildings," Professor Potter continued. "We will need patrols, people stationed at key points to make sure the enemy doesn't get behind us."
"No!" Harry put in. Professor Potter looked at him shocked, then Harry continued. "We don't need people to stand guard. There isn't a hall way in this castle or a room that doesn't have a painting! The paintings will be our eyes and ears! They will monitor every inch of the school, and we will give them power for a few hours to repel any attackers."
Professor Potter looked around on the walls, smiled and nodded. "Very good thinking, Harry!" he remarked.
Sir Nicholas spoke up among the ghosts. "We thought we would be doing that, Harry! Isn't there some place for us?" "Yes!" Harry answered. "When the fighting starts the hospital is going to be very important to us. Our injured will have to be taken there. I am sure those opposing us will send dark spirits to attack those tending the injured. I want every ghost we have in the hospital protecting the injured, keeping them safe! That will be the most important ground to hold!"
Nicholas straightened. "It will be held, Harry! It will be held!" he snapped. Harry nodded. "There's one thing," Mr. Potter put in. "Gregory!"
One of the students came over and took off his jacket. He had a short sleeved shirt on under it. On his arm was a tattoo.
"All the death eaters have a mark," Mr. Potter explained, "like this. This one isn't real. I only drew it on. It's a skull with a snake coming out of its mouth. As soon as they are captured this mark must be removed. It will cause them unbelievable agony, and some of them will die shortly after it is removed. But if it is not removed and Voldemort is destroyed forever, they will be destroyed with him. As many of them as we can we must break their connection with him, not only to weaken his power as it will, but to save as many of them as we can."

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