Chapter 20 : Betrayal
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“What is this about?” asked Hermione as she entered the room of requirement with Draco.
“Close the door first,” said Jake. They did and Jake offered them a lopsided grin. “First and foremost, congratulations in the engagement!”
“Did you tell him?” asked Draco.
“I didn’t tell him. Did you?” Draco shook his head and Hermione continued in a hushed whisper. “I’m telling you, he snoops around in peoples minds for fun because he has nothing else to do. Someone desperately needs a hobby.” Draco nodded in agreement and turned back to Jake.
“But what else? You can’t have called us down here just for that.”
“Right,” said Mel. “We have word of when Voldemort will be attacking Hogwarts.”
“May third,” answered Jake.
“Bloody hell, that’s less than a month away.”
“Precisely. Which is why we really need to start practicing, I want you guys to be fully prepared. We’re going to see if we can do joint attacks as well.”
“Good idea, Mel,” said Hermione.
“That’s all we had to say for now. Just, be on the lookout.”
“We will,” promised Draco as they left, planning their wedding along the way.
“Do you think they’re ready, Jake?”
“I do. Are you though?”
“I have to be,” she said before she too, left the room of requirement.
Hermione hummed the wedding march for what seemed to be the billionth time since Draco had proposed to her, as she placed the stack of books she had gotten from the library on her bed. She just couldn’t shake the giddy feeling that she got whenever she thought of her husband to be. Fiancée. She loved the word.
Suddenly, she felt a searing pain along her chest and abdomen and she knew. Something was gravely wrong. Dropping everything, she ran to the common room, only to find Draco in his doorway with the same look of urgency on his face.
“Did you feel that?”
“Yeah. Something must have happened to one of us.”
“Where?” Hermione thought only for a moment before providing an answer.
“The room of requirement. It has to be.” Draco nodded and they ran to where they were sure to see at least one of them in some form of danger. What greeted them though, was completely unexpected. Jake was on the floor in a slump, holding his arm, blood trickling down it. The ever growing blood stain on his shirt did not escape Hermione’s notice either. How could it when it was what had led her and Draco here in the first place?
“Bloody hell Jake,” said Draco, “what happened to you? Why didn’t you heal?”
“I can’t heal myself-“
“Did you call Madame Pomfrey?”
“Yes, I'm fine-“
“No you're not! Both Draco and I felt that slash along your chest. Who did this to you?”
“That’s what I've been trying to tell you!” he exclaimed. “It doesn’t matter that I'm hurt. The part that matters is who did it!”
“It was Melissa! She’s been working with Voldemort the entire time! She asked me to join her and when I refused, she did this.”
“No, it can’t be,” whispered Hermione in denial. Then, louder, “she can’t have. She sold us out!”
“Mione, calm down,” warned Draco.
“Calm down? Calm down!? Draco, you don’t understand. She told Voldemort when to attack us, and they almost killed me!”
“I know,” he bit off. “But right now, there are more important things than what’s already in the past.” At that moment, Madame Pomfrey entered the room and went to Jake. She lifted his shirt to reveal a gruesome looking burn mark, which drew a shocked gasp from Hermione.
Madame Pomfrey then said a series of spells and the burn mark lightened and healed, though it didn’t completely disappear. She healed his arm and then stood.
“I can’t completely heal that burn mark,” she said, “so you will have a scar there from now on.”
“That’s fine,” he replied, standing up. “Thank you Poppy. We must speak in private now, though.” Madame Pomfrey nodded and left them alone again and Jake turned to Draco and Hermione.
“This is a serious problem,” he said. “She’s only used it a couple of times, but she has the gift of invisibility, so if you have even the smallest inkling that you're being watched or followed, put your guard up and contact me.”
“It’s not like anyone can sneak into Hogwarts,” scoffed Draco.
Then, Hermione and Jake in unison, “trust me, it’s possible.”
“That was all,” said Jake, walking to the door.
“Jake wait,” said Hermione, sending Draco out of the room with a single glance. “Are you okay?”
“I’ll be fine.”
“Are you sure? I know you two were close.” Her tone suggested that she knew more about how close Jake and Melissa were than he had let on.
“Yeah, I’ll be okay,” he repeated. “You should get going. Draco’s waiting for you.”
“Yeah,” she replied quietly, her heart aching for him. “I’m sorry Jake. You didn’t deserve for this to happen.” He nodded silently as Hermione stepped out of the room. Closing the door behind her, he rested his head against the hard wood of it. His fist pounded against the door as he tried to control his emotions, but tears fell to the ground nonetheless.
Hermione was drawn out of her trance-like state by Harry's voice calling her name. She turned her attention from the drizzle outside to face him and the empty Gryffindor common room. Of course, she had no clue as to what he had said, so she was forced to ask again.
“Are you okay?” he repeated. “You haven’t moved for nearly an hour.”
“Oh, I'm sorry. I’m just a bit tired.”
“I know what you mean. Dumbledore’s been having me train three days a week for two hours. I'm exhausted.”
“I know what that’s like,” muttered Hermione, not realizing what exactly she was giving away. Harry quirked his head to the side, raising a brow at her puzzling words.
“I have a feeling that we’re not talking about the same thing anymore,” he said, causing Hermione's hand to fly to her mouth as she was suddenly aware of what she had let slip. “Mione, what aren’t you telling us?” Hermione looked to Harry, then cast a cautious glance around the room.
“Harry, you have to promise not to tell anyone what I'm about to tell you.”
“It’s not another bad thing, is it?” he asked cautiously. Hermione assured him that it wasn’t and he hesitantly agreed to her terms, promising to remain silent.
“Harry, I'm an elemental.” He didn’t seem to quite understand, so she reiterated. “I have the power to control the air. I'm an elemental.”
“You're a what!?” he nearly shouted as comprehension dawned on him.
“Mione that’s- I mean- Bloody hell! Does anyone else know? What can you do?”
“You’re the first person that I’ve told so that would make it you, me, Draco, Jake, Melissa, Dumbledore and Madame Pomfrey.”
“Jake and Melissa?”
“Earth and fire,” replied Hermione.
“Wait, did you say Draco? Does that mean-?”
“Wow. Do I know this Jake and Melissa?”
“Nope. Mel is a traitor though. It's what I was thinking about, actually.”
“I’m sorry,” said Harry, ever aware of the sadness that Hermione's voice contained. “It sounds like she was important to you.”
“Yeah,” she sighed, “she taught me everything I know. But anyway, to answer your other question, I think a demonstration would be better suited to answer it.”
“I’m up for a demonstration,” replied Harry, flashing her a smile. “I mean, I suppose I could find time in my busy schedule in order to see a legendary elemental at work.”
“I have to clear it with Jake first though. I mean, why not just show you all of us? I'm glad I told you now though, because it would rather defeat the purpose of going in to battle to help you win, only to get you killed because you were so shocked to see your friend flying around that you forgot to look at Voldemort.”
“I would never do something like that!” he objected. Then after a short pause, “well, maybe for a moment. But just think about it, we could make a team-the boy who lived, whose friends with the legendary air elemental, who just happens to be dating the water elemental.”
“Engaged to the water elemental,” she voiced, drawing a surprised jaw drop from Harry.
“It’s a secret though. I want to announce it a bit later, when everyone’s present. Now remember, you promised.”
“I won’t tell a soul.”
A/N: So you've figured out who the traitor is. Surprised? Tell me about it in a review *hint, hint* Sorry this chapter is so short. I didn't realize until just now. But hey, we've only got 4 more after this. Thanks for the reviews, they were great^^
Poor Jake. The doomed pairing, which makes me sad since I really do like that pairing :(
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