Chapter 7 : Chapter Seven
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"...interrupting Matlock...vaccuum salesmen...don't vant more cats..." The door opened. "I SAID, NO! I DON'T VANT TEE VACC...oh, Narcissa! Lucius! Velcome home!"
The couple smiled down at the woman. She was about 5' 4" and grey-haired, wearing a pink shawl and a blue flowery dress. Megan was born in Sweden but moved to Wales once Lucius and Narcissa decided to sell the house. Megan still had the accent, but it wasn't as strong or prominent as it used to be. She pulled Narcissa toward her and gave her a huge hug, kissing both of her cheeks before doing the same to Lucius. Narcissa looked down and spotted the children, crouching down to introduce them.
"Megan, this is Draco and this is Hermione. Draco's birthday was yesterday and Hermione's is today!"
"Oh, how sveet! Tee little dahlings vill get a special treat tonight! How does ice cream sound?"
Draco and Hermione grinned greedily as Megan led them into the kitchen. She sat them in her high stools at her little island in the middle of the kitchen and leaned forward on her elbows against the other side.
"Vut vould you like on tee sundae?"
"Grapes! And raisins! And raspberry ice cream!" Hermione said excitedly.
"And cherry juice for a drink!" Draco added.
Megan smiled at the kids, patting the counter before turning around and using her wand to make the sundae. She knew that the food would probably not get eaten tonight, seeing as how the kids appetites would range from overeating to undereating. Megan knew exactly what the kids were going through, as she had to go through it also with her fiancé, Gregory Sventinson, and Dumbledore when Grindenwald was on the rise.
She glanced behind her and saw the two kids giggling and chatting away. She smiled. Her and Gregory used to be like them, friends at a young age, then lovers. Once Grindenwald had been defeated, one of his followers, Tom Riddle, killed Gregory. Riddle had gotten away before Megan's auror training could overcome her loss and get revenge. Megan shook her head, clearing her thoughts and grabbing the finished sundae.
"Okay, kids! Here's your ice cream!"
They both ate a few small bites before sitting back in their stools, full.
Megan smiled as the kids nodded, making a mental note to set something up with Dumbledore for their special diets when they were sent to Hogwarts. Of course, Megan recognized Heather Granger, so she knew Hermione would get sent to Hogwarts. Magical children inherited at least a form of magical abilities from relatives in their families, even if it could not be controlled with a wand.
Heather is a powerful witch, there was no doubt that Hermione will be just as powerful when she's half Heather's age. Megan thought.
"Draco! Hermione! Time for bed!" Lucius called.
Hermione sighed and Megan smiled before helping the kids down.
"Thank you, Misses...?" Draco began.
"Misses Sventinson is fine," Megan muttered, looking out the small window over her kitchen sink.
"Thank you, Misses Sventinzone," Hermione said, earning a small smile from Megan.
"Just Misses S. Your velcome, kids."
The two left the room and Megan hopped onto her counter by the sink, staring out the small window and into the night sky. She remembered everything about the night Gregory proposed.
The land was much like the scenery behind the thatched cottage they had just finished looking at in Wales. Trees dotted the landscape, a large blue lake stretched out across the land. The green grass sprouted from the rich earth, flowers budding in the moonlight. A young couple sat by the lake's edge, wrapped in a blue woolen blanket with little twinkling stars and the occasional comet streaking across it. The wind was blowing gently, whipping tendrils from the woman's hair across her face as the couple sat upon the ground by the serene lake. The leaves upon the trees swayed and rustled with the wind, the grass leaning from side to side to go with the flow.
A group of small, white, blooming flowers were gathered at the couple's feet, a few falling into the lake with the breeze. The man was tickling the woman, her joyous laughter ringing out into the silently beautiful night. They fell back into the grass together, staring up at the night sky which had been marveled at for years. The young man turned onto his side, the blanket sinking between the two. He stared at the beautiful woman next to him, examining her beauty. Her fiery red hair was splayed across the grass, some tucked into the blanket behind her head. Her peachy complexion shimmered in the moonlight, giving her a silver glow.
The young woman felt her lover's eyes upon her. She turned her head to the left, facing the young man, a Moonflower from the pile at their feet becoming illuminated in the moonlight. The young man smiled at her, his bright smile lighting up the night. His honey-colored hair was becoming messier from the breeze that blew by. His gray-blue eyes stared lovingly into her honey-chocolate ones.
The wind began to die down. The young man reached a hand up from under the blanket, where they had been holding hands, and gently moved a stray tendril from the beautiful woman's face, tucking it behind her ear before caressing her cheek with his thumb. The woman's eyes closed at the gentle gesture, her mouth turning into a pleasant grin. The young woman became curious when the cold wind kissed her cheek once more. Her eyes opened and she saw her lover perched above her, staring down. She became curious as he bit his lip and looked toward the lake, a nervous look in his eyes.
"Dahling, vut's rong?" The woman asked.
The young man looked back at his beautiful girlfriend, knowing he loved her. Her auburn hair gleamed in the moonlight, the Moonflower gently loosening from its position behind her ear. She tilted her head to the right as he looked away from her once more. Just staring at her beauty made the question he was going to ask her all that much harder. He loved her so much, he wouldn't know what he would do if she rejected him.
"Nothing's wrong, dear." He whispered.
"Ten why do you look into tee distance as if you were afraid?"
"Because I am afraid, honey. I'm scared as all hell."
Her face grew concerned and fearful. "Tiss is not about tee mission, is it? Did someting happen?! Did Grindenvald do someting?!"
The man looked back into the woman's eyes and smiled slightly. He reached out and touched her cheek once more, but her questioning gaze did not falter.
"Nothing happened, honey. This is the good kind of nervous, if you can consider it that..."
Her eyes grew curious. "Tere's a good kind of nervus?"
The man chuckled, nodding. "Yes, darling, there is a good kind of nervous. The kind of nervous that only comes around for things that are life-changing."
The man moved his hand from the woman's cheek to her hand, taking a hold of it before hoisting himself off of the ground. The woman looked up at him, their connected hands suspended in the night air. He smiled gently at her and she gathered her flowing blue skirt in her open hand, being helped up by the one he held. Once she was situated, she dropped her skirt, the man taking a hold of her other hand. He brought them together, warming them slightly.
"You know I love you a lot, right?" The man asked.
"Yes...I vud hope so..." She responded, earning another chuckle from him.
"I just wanted to make sure. I want you to know that I will always love you, no matter what happens. I promise that I will always be there for you. We'll never be apart. Just know that, alright?"
The young woman became frightened again. "Vut arr you trying too say...?"
The man smiled again, slowly lowering onto one knee. The wind picked up once more, blowing the woman's skirt and hair all over. The man watched as this happened, believeing, for a split second, that he was going to pop the question to a Goddess of the Moonlight. The wind died down and the woman's eyes widened.
He let go of both of the woman's hands, them both immediately shooting up to cover her mouth as she watched him in shock. He pulled out a small black velvet box, taking a deep breath before reciting the words he had practiced for five months now.
"Megan Kai Jakobsdotter, will you marry me?"
The young man held his breath as he stared into the beautiful honey-chocolate eyes of his beloved. She stared at the magnificently hand-crafted ring in the small velvet box that the man held. It was simple, yet elegant. The ring had a silver band will small celtic symbols along it, a one carat diamond in the center. Something about the ring registered in her mind, and she glanced at the man's left hand, spotting the same ring, minus the diamond, on his left hand. He had been wearing that for the past five months.
Once her eyes had detatched themselves from the identical ring, she finally looked into her boyfriend's eyes. Those gray-blue eyes so filled with love and care, staring at her so intently, so meaningfully. Her eyes were glued to his. This connection that they had had, she knew it would not end at a small boyfriend/girlfriend relationship. She loved him too much. He was too wonderful. She wanted to spend the rest of her life with him, she had decided that a long time ago.
Megan soon realized that she had sunken to her own knees in front of the man. Her eyes were watery with tears which had finally begun to make their way down her face. She gave him a watery smile, launching herself onto him and kissing him full force. This kiss was much more passionate than they had ever been. When they had finally broken apart, the man was staring at her, slightly shocked and a little dizzy. Megan smiled down at him seductively and happily.
"Yes, Gregory Adolfus Sventinson, I vill marry you."
The lovers kissed once more, a gentle, caring kiss. Megan began to think again.
"You promise you'll alvays be tere for me?"
Gregory nodded. "With every fiber of my being. I'll always be by your side."
Those same honey-chocolate eyes began to flood with tears again as she stared at her backyard, a gentle breeze blowing, a night sky almost identical to the one from that night staring back at her. She looked to the North Star and the memories from the part of her life she had been able to keep locked up for years came spilling out, opening old wounds.
"You promised you'd alvays be here," she half-sobbed, half-whispered, "you promised me, Gregory."
Megan's emotional escapade was interrupted when she heard her guests laughing and talking in the Living Room. She quickly wiped at the tears, sniffing and using her wand to make herself presentable again. Megan gazed upon the twinkling stars and shining moon a moment longer before releasing the rope on the curtain to keep the memories of blissful, love-filled nights from flooding her mind again.
Megan joined Heather, Ernest, Jeremy, Esther, Lucius, and Narcissa in the Living Room.
"Is everyvun situated alright?" Megan asked.
"Yes, Megan. Thank you for letting us stay here," Lucius said.
"It's nahting, Lucius. All in a day's vurk."
Lucius smiled and wrapped his arm around Narcissa, who was next to him, and drew her closer. She snuggled against him and they looked out the window at the glittering stars. Megan's heart sank in self-pity and loneliness before she shook her head, clucking her tongue. Everyone looked up as Megan stared up the stairs.
"What's wrong?" Esther asked her.
My whole life... "I've only got tree rooms upstairs. Tee utters are being redone."
"No problem. Lucius and I can stay down here."
Megan looked at the young couple uncertainly. "Are you sure? I can make a bed."
Narcissa shook her head and yawned. Megan shrugged. "Alright."
The Granger's bid the Malfoy's and goodnight. Jeremy and Esther then shared a goodnight with Ernest and looks with Heather. They both went into the bathroom to change, prep for bed, and in Esther's case, to speak.
"I cannot believe that woman! Hermione's old enough to know and she still will not tell her!"
"Esther, she's my mother and Joie's mother. I have no say in whether she tells Joie or not..."
"You have plenty of say! You're her brother! Ernest should at least have the balls to tell his daughter even if you can't!"
"Esther! This is my family! Our family! Whether my mother's being herself or not, you cannot just insult them like that! I don't care what they do! Yes, holding this information from Joie is horrible! But it's not our decision! Just, let them deal with it..."
Esther looked at her husband in sympathy, "Jem, I know. But Kaylie is part of this family too. And she deserves to know everyone in the family."
"I know, hun, I know. I hope Kaylie's alright."
"She's with my mother, how much damage can they do?"
Jeremy raised an eyebrow at his wife. "Alright, so they blew up the kitchen once. I don't know why you're still on that..."
"They singed my moustache off!"
"Honey, it looked stupid anyway. Besides, I talked to her earlier. She told me that her and my mom have been going to the park and pranking little kids."
Jeremy shook his head grinning, "I don't know why I married into your family."
"Because we're a hell of a lot more entertaining than your's!"
Jeremy mock glared at Esther, but she knew there was some truth behind the glare. Only his mother was no fun, and that had started after Hermione had turned four. She used to be great fun, but something went wrong, and it all went downhill.
"Okay, well, let's go to bed. We've got a flight to catch tomorrow," Jeremy said, moving past his wife and opening the bathroom door.
Jeremy had started walking down the hall when he heard a painful, "OW!"
He looked back at his wife and saw her holding the door frame, leaning to the side, holding one of her ribs.
"Nothing. He just kicked me really hard in the ribs, that's all."
Jeremy nodded and helped Esther to their bed, helping her lay down. He laid next to her, wrapping his arms around her. Heather's eyes flew open when she thought they had fallen asleep. She stared at the ceiling and rolled over so that she faced Jeremy and Esther. She jumped when she saw Jeremy staring at her angrily.
"Esther's right. Tell Hermione, mother. Or I'll bring Kaylie here."
"You will not be welcome in my house if you bring that mistake to this country!" Heather hissed.
"Kaylie is not a mistake!"
"She is! I wouldn't have dumped her on you if I thought she was worth anything!"
"Bullshit, mom! No! You know what?! You're not even worthy of that title! You're a horrible mother! You don't even know who Kaylie is!"
"How dare you! Watch who you're talking to, Jeremy! Remember who invited you to this godforsaken place!"
"I'll thank the Malfoy's tomorrow morning!"
Jeremy ground his teeth and quickly turned over, away from Heather. She held her huff of anger and frustration in and slammed her eyes shut. She didn't underestimate her son, even though she hated it when he was right and threatening. Heather did need to tell Hermione about Kaylie, and she knew if she didn't, Jeremy would be at their house in an instant, introducing Kaylie to Hermione. Heather couldn't let that happen. It wouldn't happen. After a few moments of dreaming up a few words to break the news to Hermione, she fell asleep dreaming about beating young strangers and kissing mystery men.
September 12, 1983
"Jooooiiieee....joooooiiiieeeeee...HERMIONE!" Draco whispered loudly in Hermione's ear.
She tossed and turned, muttering incoherent words.
"Mmm, bubbles...no, I don't know what krista said...yeah, bracelet's are pre-...what, Luke? What...what time is it?" Hermione asked groggily, looking around.
"Eight twenty," Draco responded, not even glancing at the clock.
"And what time is daddy taking us there?"
"Oh, then I'll slee--WHAT?!"
Hermione shot out of bed and ran to her dresser, running to the bathroom. Draco smirked, knowing he was going to get yelled at by her later. He walked downstairs, past the pictures of Hermione and her family, a few of the Grangers' and Malfoys' together, and some of just Hermione and Draco. Once he reached the small foyer of the Granger home, he stopped and looked around. The front door was a white french door, a wooden coat rack to the left with a small basket next to it for shoes. To the right, a small wooden table with a boquet of flowers. Roses and baby's breath, Hermione's favorite.
Further still to the right, the entrance to the Kitchen, from there, the Dining Room. Again with the left, a door to the Living Room. All in all, there were five bedrooms and three bathrooms throughout the house, along with a small den.
Draco continued on his way to the Kitchen, sitting at the Dining Room table. Mr. Granger was already at the table feasting on pancakes and bacon with a glass of orange juice while reading the paper.
"Wake Joie up?"
"What time did you tell her?"
"Very good. You're getting better at waking her up."
Ernest looked up from his paper and smiled at Draco.
"Thank you, Uncle Ernest."
"I'm awake! I'm here! Let's go!" Hermione yelled, running into the Dining Room.
"Won't you stay for a bite?" Her father asked her.
Heather walked in with a plate of food, setting it on the Dining Room table.
"Hermione, sit down dear. Have a bite. It's only seven forty-five," Heather said coldly.
Hermione glared at Draco and pointed her finger at him, "He lied!"
"Yes, dear. Now be quiet and eat your breakfast," Mr. Granger said, pulling out her chair.
Draco stuck out his tongue as Hermione glared at him. Just as Hermione opened her mouth to tattle, Ernest interrupted.
"Luke, stop teasing Joie. Joie, it's not nice to be a tattletale."
"Yeah. Sorry, Uncle Ernest."
The next fifteen minutes were spent in silence. But not an uncomfortable silence in the least. It was a silence that was steadily becoming funnier and more entertaining by the minute. Heather had finished her breakfast and had taken part of the paper from her husband, holding it up in front of her. She read while Draco, Hermione, and Ernest made faces at her. For instance, Draco was pulling his nostrils up with two of his fingers, Hermione was rolling her eyes backward and pulling her lips down by the corners with her index fingers, and Ernest was rolling his eyes backward while pulling his upper lip up with his pinkies and his lower eyelid down with his index fingers. Without moving her eyes from the paper, Heather sighed and shook her head.
"Juveniles. Kids, time to go. Have fun at school!" Her voice was anything but cheery in attitude.
Draco and Hermione grabbed their bookbags, decorated with gray and silver, and made their way to the door with Ernest.
"Bye, Aunty Bri!" Draco waved to Hermione's mother.
"Yeah, bye Luke." She returned to reading the paper, leaving a heartbroken little Draco standing in the doorway, staring at the person he considered his second mother with so much hurt, Ernest and Hermione could not look at him any longer.
"C'mon, Luke. Let's go to school." Hermione recognized the look in his eyes. That was the same look she had whenever she had spoken to her mother since she was four.
Ernest dropped the kids off at the Joseph D. Sharp Elementary School twenty minutes later, Ernest hugging them goodbye before leaving. The two first-graders walked around the back of the school and lined up under their new room number. Room 113. A thin, tall, blonde woman walked to the front of the line, a clipboard in hand. She was dressed in a flowery summer dress, thick, gold glasses with a gold chain wrapped around her hanging on her neck. She began to read off names from her clipboard.
"Seamus Finnegan? Seamus? No Seamus? Alright then..."
"Hermo-ninny Granger? And your age please?"
Hermione sighed. "Her-mi-o-KNEE. And I'm six."
The teacher looked up from her clipboard, studying the bushy-haired girl. The young girl was not trying to be smart or sassy, just correcting her obvious error and saving her time. Other classes began to file into the building.
Draco looked up from his conversation with Hermione. He smiled at the teacher. "Dr-AY-co Malfoy. And I'm six too."
The teacher looked up again, seeing the blonde-haired boy talking to the small, bushy-haired girl . He was not being annoying either, simply informing. She checked her clipboard and noticed at least thirteen names after his.
"Seven today, ma'am."
"Goody, Parvati and Padma Patil?"
Hermione shuddered, glaring at the back of the head of the girl who had attacked her last year. Draco set his hand on Hermione's arm when her hand had curled into a fist.
"Parvati's eight and I'm six," Padma replied, making the class snicker.
The teacher kept ticking names off her list after the Patil twins, the only recognizeable name being Dean Thomas and Blaise Zabini. Some other kids who were kids of some of the Unspeakables that Lucius worked with were present, but even Draco barely knew them by name.
"My name is Misses Neiman. I will teach you math, language arts, science, reading, and writing. Now, let's go inside. It's too hot out," Mrs. N. introduced.
The group of kids and Mrs. N. entered the building, headed toward the classroom, past pictures of the last sixth grade class to walk the elementary school's halls. They passed paintings of the best artists of every grade from last year. Once the class made it to the room, everyone hung up their bookbags and coats, getting out their school supplies and filling the desks, which they were allowed to choose themselves.
There were five rows of desks, five desks to a row. Twenty-three of these desks were filled. Hermione and Draco had quickly claimed two seats in the very back. Against the back wall was the coat rack, to the left, the door. To the left of the door, a blue cement wall with a bulletin board hung on it. On the right wall were more bulletins and posters like "Reading is Fun!" and "Smacky the Frog says, 'Books are Cool!'" On the floor was a large green carpet surrounded by cubbies for games and book shelves. A chair was to the side for reading.
The front wall had a big, black chalkboard. Above it were large pieces of rolled paper that rolled out to be maps of the world, one a projector's screen. On the left wall were six large windows and a counter underneath.
"Okay kids, today we'll just be introducing each other and telling things about ourselves. Who wants to go first?" Mrs. N. asked.
A boy in the third column, third seat raised his hand. The teacher smiled, "Okay, you go first."
The little boy nodded. He had sea green eyes and light brown hair. He also had little freckles that dotted his nose, cheeks, and arms. He wrung his hands as he stood and spoke.
"M-my name's-s Rand-dy T-tessler-r. A-and I l-like to re-read and play sp-sports."
"Thank you, Randy. Who's next?"
The boy sat down quickly, putting his head down on his desk. A girl in a fluffy dress, in the first seat of the fifth column, stood. Mrs. N. nodded and she smiled. She looked like a regular Shirley Temple. She had shiny black hair that had been curled into tight ringlets, pale white skin, and big green eyes. She had her hands folded in front of her, clasped together. Her dress was pink and frilly with a white satin belt around her waist and lace outlining the top layer of the dress. She smiled once more, showing off her perfect white teeth.
"My name's Suri Cruise. I love dolls and shopping. I also like singing, acting, and modeling in shows."
Hermione scrunched her nose up at Suri. She looked at Draco, who was staring at Suri in awe. The Sun's rays cast some light on Suri and gave her an angelic glow.
"Psssst! Luuuke! Psssssttt!! Luuuuuuukkkee!! DRACO!" Hermione whispered fiercely.
Draco snapped out of his trance, "What is it, Joie?"
"I don't like, Suri. She doesn't sound like fun."
"Joie, what does Aunty Bri say all the time?" Draco's eyes flashed with the same pain Hermione had when hearing that name.
"Eat your vegetables?"
"No! Don't judge a book by its cover! Make friends before you decide whether you'll speak to them or not."
Hermione paused, staring at Draco with an odd look.
"My mum said that?"
It was Draco's turn to pause.
"No, I heard it on the telly."
Hermione rolled her eyes and raised her hand to be called on next.
"My name's Her-mi-oh-KNEE Granger. I love reading, and playing tag, and playing games, and playing outside."
Mrs. N. nodded and Draco raised his hand.
"My name's dr-AY-co Malfoy. I like playing with my snake Greg, and my dad said he was getting us a puppy. And I like playing outside with Joie."
The teacher looked puzzled. "Who's Joey?"
Draco pointed to Hermione. "She's Joie."
"She just said her name was Hermione."
Hermione cut in. "We call each other by our middle names. We've done it since preschool."
Mrs. N. nodded, getting through the other kids after an hour and a half. She had had a forty-five minute conversastion on the phone with her daughter, who had called during class while the kids were free to speak and play and explore the room.
Mrs. Neiman led the kids to the Gym, where the lunch tables were set up. She led them to their assigned table.
"This is where you'll sit everyday for Lunch, kids. Remember this table." She left.
For the next three-and-a-half hours, the class ate lunch, had recess, spent an hour reading, spent another hour playing board games, spent another hour playing class-oriented games, and then used the last five minutes to pack up and get ready to leave. At three o' clock, the bell rang and the kids grabbed their stuff, heading down the hall towards the parking lot to find Ernest. Draco tried to make conversation.
"Do you like Misses N?"
Hermione nodded, "Yeah, I guess."
They walked out the front doors and out passed the bus zone to the area they had nicknamed "The Island". The safety, Melanie Day, was there."
"Hi, Mel!" Draco and Hermione said happily.
"Hey, Luke! Hey, Joie!" Melanie was one of the Unspeakable children. Her brother, Sean, was a seventh grader in middle school.
Melanie held her arms out, preventing anyone from walking past until the crossing guard had secured the area. Hermione watched the crossing guard, Mrs. Baker, begin walking into the street, holding up her sign and her hand to prevent the flow of traffic. Hermione took this as a sign to walk and slipped under Melanie's arm, walking into the road. A black BMW was speeding along the road, heading straight for her.
"JOIE!" Melanie shouted.
Hermione turned and spotted the car, merely ten feet from her, and screamed.
The moments after that seemed to slow, almost to a halt. Hermione's short life flashed before her eyes, memories of her dad and Jeremy playing in the snow with her, little bits of Jeremy's wedding because she was too young to remember. A small girl with extremely dark brown hair and the happiest blue eyes anyone has ever seen. The last vision Hermione saw before a BMW emblem pushed all her memories away, was little Draco running toward her, a huge smile plastered on his face to match his glowing eyes.
Suddenly...there was a crash, a searing pain, a bright white light...and then, darkness.
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