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Chapter 14

As Christmas neared Professor Potter gathered the students in the great hall. "It is unquestioned," he said, "we are beiing watched. Soon some of you should be leaving for your homes for Christmas break. You won't be. We have secretly brought in people to take yur place. We will use enchantments to make them look like you. They will go out on the train. The real students will stay here at Hogwarts and and you will have to stay concealed, not move around, only the students that are still supposed to be here must be out and about. "We must create the illusion that Hogwarts is just as it should be at the Christmas season. We are in hopes this will draw the enemy to us, that he will attack when we want him to attack, when we are ready for him. If he sees what he expects to see he will believe what he is expected to believe. Many great muggle tacticians have said that surprise is your best weapon, taking the enemy unprepared will give you your best opportunity. And we want our best opportunity. Missing one Christmas season with our families will be worthwhile. Now, go about your business! Make it look like you're carrying on your normal activities and let's prepare to give our guests a very warm welcome if they come."
Everyone agreed, and the plan was put into operation. Harry was amazed at the people they had gathered. If he didn't know any better he would've sworn the young man playing him was his twin! Though the moment he spoke his accent quickly gave away that he was very American, but the illusion spell took care of that. And the Hermione was a little bit older, but she, too, would easily fool anyone without a spell.
Harry asked the professor about this. "We're all brothers and sisters, Harry, " the professor answered. "We all carry the same genetic inheritance. Though we are spread around the world we all come from the same stock. It is little wonder that many of us resemble each other. A girl from South Africa resembles Hermione. A boy from The United States resembles you. And they all share our magical powers! We're all related, Harry, that's why we should all live in peace!"
Harry nodded. Christmas morning he was woken by Hermione. "What's the matter?" he asked, "Is it the attack?"
"No," Hermione answered, "It's the baby!" Harry hurried to the hospital. Many of the students were gathered outside of it. They were all talking, laughing, when Neville ran up. "Harry!" he cried, "the owls on patrol, they've all come in and they're pecking the warning bells!"
"Let's go, everybody!" Harry cried. "Apparently they've taken the bait! They're coming! Get to your positions!"
He grabbed Fred and George Weasley. "You two are reserves," he snapped. "I'm reassigning you. I think the ghosts need some reinforcements in the hospital. I want you two to hold this area, make sure nothing they can't handle gets through."
"Nothing will, Harry!" the twins answered as they too up position in front of the doors.
He saw the quidditch captain heading for the for corners with the anchors. One of the pictures suddenly spoke up. "Harry, there's twenty trolls coming from the north. Those putting the anchor out there might have a problem."
"Neville!" Harry cried, "Malfoy! With me! There's trouble to the north."
They hurried off and in minutes the battle was joined. The trolls were stubborn, there were determined to get through, but Harry and his party finally drove them off. When he was sure those there could not hold the position Harry retreated back towards Hagrid's house. As he neared it he saw the teachers guarding a dozen or more prisoners moaning on the ground. They were wrapped in silk, except for one arm that had been pulled out to remove their mark.
"Never thought I would be saying thank you spiders!" Ron cried.
"Neither did I!" Harry agreed. "But it appears they've been very handy!"
Harry found a statue and asked "How are things inside?"
"Everything's secure," the statue answered, "every attempt to enter the school has been driven back. I have a report Voldemort's by the west entrance near Hagrid's house. He doesn't seem very pleased that we're putting up such a fight, and that they can't retreat."
"Tell them I'm coming!" Harry snapped.
They continued on driving death eaters before them. Time and time again one fell, and was pounced on and dragged off, but there seemed to be more and more of them. Harry wondered where The Potters were. Then he saw dragons fighting in the sky! Two seemed a little bit larger than the others and were fighting the rest.
"That's why they said they'd be occupied!" Harry thought. He knew who the dragons were. He didn't know how he knew, but he knew.
Slowly, surely they battled their way towards their goal. Finally Harry saw him by the whomping willow desperately trying to rally his forces trying to get them to fight on. The defenders were pushing them but they couldn't break through their defenses. Time and ti me again one of them would go down, be carried off, be revived by Professor Snape, and rejoin the battle. Suddenly somebody cried "Viktor's here! Durmstrang has come!"
More defenders poured out of the school. Now the tide was turning! Some of the death eaters tried to retreat onto the lake and the mer people rose to attack them. Harry put his want to his throat.
"Surrender!" he cried, "Give up! You're beaten!" Voldemort did likewise. "Never!" he cried. "This is to the death, Potter! One of us will die today!"
"So be it!" Harry answered. "Make way! Let me through to him! Drive them back!"
The students did not hesitate to fulfill Harry's wishes. In moments he and Voldemort were exchanging wicked bursts of energy, and it was obvious with each of his people that was knocked down Voldemort was growing weaker. Harry pushed his attack.

Page 21

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