Chapter 1 : Insane Complexity
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-Never Coming Out-
-Disappearing everyday without so much of a word somehow. Think I broke the wings off of that little songbird. She never gonna fly to the top of the world right now-
- Dixie Chicks, Home, Top of the World.
Eight years before the story takes place.
Voldemort sat by the window of the Riddle House. He was aware of the ten Death Eaters standing behind him, awaiting his commands. Yet, there was nothing to be done. It was accurate enough to say that his terror over the wizard world was weak. He had only been fully alive for two years. With Voldemort sitting by the window, it looked like he wasn?t doing anything to get stronger. Well, I can say that wasn?t true.
The Dark Wizard had wanted a safety net for his rule. The last time he had tried to take over the world, a baby had defeated him. Well, not just any baby, just Harry James Potter. And Voldemort knew that there was more on the inside than it seemed on the outside of his foe. If that Potter had found out that there was a way to defeat his adversary for good... well then he wouldn?t have a chance to live.
Above all that, one year ago, Voldemort was told that he could exceed his power limit by one of his Death Eaters that was very brainy and quick to the books. Immediately, Voldemort had thirteen people working on the spells and enchantments for the ultimate.
So now, he was awaiting the owl that would give him an advantage over everything. Just hours before, he heard that his workers had found information. Yet, there was nothing of this to prove that they had. The stupid owl was taking its time. It didn?t know how important this was to him. Unless the owl had got inter-... but Voldemort didn?t want to think about that.
?Master?? asked a timid voice, and of course it was timid. Who wouldn?t be? Voldemort sighed and turned in his chair. Within a fraction of a second, Voldemort had a hopeful feeling- maybe the stupid owl had gone to the wrong window. He knew that wasn?t true. The owl was told to go to the person who will need it the most, and that was supposed to be him.
?What?? he snapped. With pleasure in his body, he watched that fool of a Death Eater take a small and slightly hard to see step back.
?It?s been eight hours since they should have sent the owl.?
?I?ve talked to one of the researchers just now, and he said that the owl was sent out nine hours ago.?
Voldemort didn?t reply. Anger was bubbling up. What had happened to the owl? He wanted, no needed, the information. So whom did the owl go to? Knowing what he needed to do, Voldemort started walking towards the door. Before he left, he felt the anger increasing in his blood, and took out his wand. Voldemort muttered two, simple words.
The messenger was dead by the time Voldemort stepped into the hallway.
?C?mon, Hermione! Have a heart!?
?How many times do I have to tell you, no. And having a heart doesn?t mean I have to let you reconfigure my face.?
It was nearing the end of Hermione?s holidays and she was kicking herself for coming home from the Burrow to her parents? pleas that they didn?t see their own daughter anymore. As much as she loved them, she would have gone back to Professor Trelawney?s classroom and sat through ten lessons. At least she could be with her friends there.
Hermione was sitting in her room, with her cousin, Natalie Williams. Natalie was a thirteen-year-old with intense, long, blonde hair that reached down to her bottom back. Her eyes were a dull green. Coming along with the territory was her obsession of trying to change people. This, unfortunately, came from her mother. Hermione had preferred her parents to invite the Williams?s to the house when she wasn?t home, or at least Natalie and her mother.
?Please! You are almost seventeen and you don?t even use cosmetics daily. How are you ever going to get noticed by boys??
Hermione rolled her eyes. And she thought that Ron could be annoying. Natalie exceeded his ways to infuriate by a mile. ?I already have. So you can stop your little boyfriend scheme.?
Natalie looked around the room for another suggestion for her taunts. All Hermione had was pictures of her two best friends, books, a white desk, a bed, and some stuff animals. Most of her stuff had been taken along with her during six years at some boarding school. Natalie, finally choosing one of the five topics to start with, said ?All you ever do is read and do homework. Do you ever have fun??
Of course Hermione had heard this before, multiple of times. Yet as much as the same speech had been said in her first year at Hogwarts, her peers had started laying off as they advance through the years. Maybe Hermione had started to loosen up and started having fun or maybe her peers had gotten tired of saying the same, exact phase.
Without knowing what sense of meanness came over her, Hermione spitted back, ?At least I can have a good career when I get to that point of my life. At least I don?t give my innocence up about two times a week.?
The two girls glared at each other. Hermione?s mother?s call was suddenly heard from downstairs, traveling its way up to Hermione?s room. Hermione sighed and walked out of her room with a side-glance at Natalie. She wasn?t worried that Natalie would find out about the existence of magic. Oh no, all of her school books, quills, robes, and wizard games were secretly hidden behind her Muggle clothing, safe in a locked trunk, in her closet.
When Hermione was halfway down the stairs, Natalie had finally made a reasonable comeback. Hermione heard her door slam open, and Natalie?s yell, ?At least I?ll won?t be a hag sitting in a bar. I?ll have a husband who loves me! You won?t Hermi, because you aren?t willing to try anything!?
Since Hermione was on the stairs and Natalie was standing in the doorway of Hermione?s room, they couldn?t see each other. However, the context of Natalie?s message froze her dry. Hags and bars. It was right onto what some of Hermione?s fears were all about. When she had these nightmares, it was usually her sitting all alone in a bar. Later, it will go onto Ron?s family. Ron would have a wife and one child, despite the history of his name. Ron and his wife would come into the bar and laugh at her for not finding someone to love, or at least not chancing it.
But Harry, Harry was always alone in these dreams, too. How could he not be? If he ever defeated his foe, then his boyhood innocence and manly charms would be destroyed, or at least to people whom didn?t know him well enough to care. But Hermione would help him through the shocks of murder; it had to be done to get her Harry back.
It always was a relief that Harry wasn?t married in her dreams. At least she wasn?t left out and Harry wouldn?t make fun of her. But then again, this was her dreams; Ron, nor Harry, wouldn?t taunt her in real life...
?Hermione!? yelled her mother again, annoyed.
Hermione looked behind her, up the stairs. Her cousin was now out of sight. With a shake of her head, Hermione was down the stairs.
When the Williams?s finally left, Hermione was left alone up in her room, and she wanted to be. The reason for her mother?s call was a piece of parchment that had came with an owl. Hermione couldn?t open it until the Williams?s had left.
The parchment was a strange piece. It was dyed a dark green and tied with a silver ribbon. The first thought that came to Hermione?s mind when she first saw the letter was the Slytherin House. It?s colors were also dark green and silver. There was another thing: there was a V.T.R scribbled on the front. Yet, her mother gave it to her anyway.
Now Hermione laid on her bed. She carefully untied the silver ribbon and read it.
It read in a nice capital printing:
We found it in a short amount of time. Yet, I have bad news for you. There are spells and enchantments that can?t be undone. We?ve looked all over the place, and found out that these enchantments are permanent. The enchantments are that the spells and information that are listed in this letter can only stay on paper until they are read by a person. Another thing- they could only be kept in the mind of certain people, or else the information is forgotten. As for these certain people, I couldn?t find anything explaining what it meant.
Anyway, I have the two things you were searching for: to be indestructible and to have no limit to your powers...
Hermione read on, unblinkingly. Yet, before she could get an idea as to figure out what to do, she fainted.
Ten rows of graves were in her vision. These were the memorials of those who died from Voldemort?s power. Well, not everyone, but all of her loved ones laid here. Looking down at the engraved names, she walked. Ginny Weasley, Albus Dumbledore, Minerva McGonagall, Neville Longbottom, Seamus Finnigan, and Cho Chang (though Hermione had never liked her). More and more names went by until she stopped by one meaningful grave.
Harry James Potter.
Hermione quickly wiped her eyes. He died while fighting Voldemort. Harry Potter died; Voldemort lived to cause more and more destruction. All because of Hermione being out in the open where Voldemort could catch her and get the information that he need out of her. All because of the information that she now held.
Hermione took another step past Harry?s grave and looked at the one next to it.
3 one in the ground
Rest in Peace.
The last one of the whole ten rows was next. Hermione knew who it was. She didn?t have to look down, but she did anyway.
We loved you when you
were young and smart
We feel sympathy for
you when you had the
information and were stupid.
You should told someone
about it, or didn?t get caught.
But you did.
So there were the three graves, two in the moonlight, one in the darkness. All of the three friends, musketeers, the trio, or whatever they could be called, were together.
Hermione sat up in her bed quickly. If sweat was tickling down her face, she didn?t notice it. The dream was still on her mind. Everyone who she knew and was her Hogwart?s family, was dead.
If the dream came true, then she would be pursued for the information that she now held. The information of the destruction of Voldemort and the spells to get more power would destroyed her and everyone. And as said in the letter, Hermione knew that she couldn?t get rid of it. She knew that she couldn?t tell anyone. It had to be her, her alone to keep it.
She knew what she had to do.
Hermione hopped out of her bed and tiptoed across the hardwood floor to her desk. There, Hermione found three pieces of parchment. It took her fifteen minutes to write goodbye notes to Harry, Ron, and her parents. Yet, she was avoiding the what and why, and Hermione knew that all three of them would want to know the cause of this.
After another ten minutes sitting at her desk, Hermione got the courage to give the letters to Harry and Ron to the barn owl that she was borrowing for the summer. Sadly, she watched the owl fly off within the night. Hermione knew that she probably would never see the real Harry and Ron for a very long time; if ever.
Once the owl was out of her sight, Hermione centered her parents? letter on the middle of her desk. She then went to her old-fashioned jewelry box and went through it, trying to find something particular. When she did, she shoved it on her wrist and started for her closet to grab her cloak. The object that she found in her jewelry box was a golden charm bracelet. Harry and Ron had gotten it for her last Christmas. There were only a few charms on it, but those were a book, three linked hands, and a lion.
When Hermione was at her door, she turned around. It was common knowledge that you couldn?t bring much belongings on a journey like this. You could only have what they gave you. Though it hurt her that she wouldn?t be having her favorite things in her life, she convinced herself that she was doing this for their protection.
Their protection. Her protection.
Yet, Hermione grabbed one more thing. She grabbed a fragile picture and walked out of her room.
She hoped that Harry and Albus Dumbledore could hold off Voldemort.
It would take considerate amount of acting on her account. She had to act like she had the disease that would go with her ways.
But she knew what she had to do.
Hermione was visibly shaking in the courtyard of St. Mangos. Though she had taken floo powder to get to the Three Broomsticks, the sixteen-year-old had walked all of the way to the hospital, which were miles away from Hogsmeade. No one had stopped her, and she was relieved. If they had, there was a slight possibility that either one of her professors would have noticed her.
Hermione walked along in a daze, practicing what she would have to do later, in front of people who she didn?t know. Out of the corners of her eyes, she could see doctors all around talking to their wards. With a blow to Hermione?s stomach, she realized that this could be her. She could be outside, where Voldemort could get her, and change the Wizard World as it was. With fierce stubbornness, Hermione resolved to not let the doctors take her outside when she was within their keep. She wanted to stay inside, where it was safe and sound. She wanted the highest protection possible.
She wanted to never come out.
Knowing what she had to do, Hermione stopped right in the middle of the courtyard and stood there. Her eyes were situated on a distance mountain peak though the birch trees at the edge of the courtyard. Her hands were down at her sides.
Cold air swirled at her sides. A clock chime was heard in the distance. People were heard walking, talking, and occasionally screaming, as it should be at a hospital. For a million years, Hermione couldn?t forget this. It would be her last minutes outside for a long time, and she wanted it like that.
It took a few minutes until she was noticed. A doctor, who was rolling his protégé around in a wheelchair, had just stopped. Hermione crowded her mind with the text from Hogwarts: A History. It would help her mind to stay a million miles away from what was happening around her.
She didn?t know what had happened next. All she could remember was doctors forcing her down in a wheelchair, and several rooms where tests were preformed.
At the end, Hermione Granger had gone down in the books as a Gricrucio Ward.
Yet, she knew the truth. No one else did.
For protection of her family, friends, and herself, she needed to be kept locked up with the information that she held.