Chapter 15 : Fighter
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‘What if they try to read my mind?’ she asked, looking fearful. ‘And they find out what we’re up to?’
‘Just simply don’t allow them to,’ Draco replied. ‘You’ve got one of the strongest minds I’ve seen Hermione. Just use all that strength to close your mind to everyone around you.’
‘What if I can’t?’ Hermione asked him. ‘What happens then?’
Draco sighed again. ‘We’ll worry about it then.’ His arms wound around her body tighter. ‘For now, go to sleep and stop worrying. You’re just tired. Don’t worry about tomorrow for now.’
‘Goodnight Draco,’ Hermione whispered, half asleep.
‘Goodnight love,’ Draco replied, kissing the top of her head.
Hermione woke up to the sound of loud footsteps against the old wood floor. She hadn’t realized that she had fallen asleep last night, and she was relieved when she realized that nothing much had changed in her surroundings. She was still in the same bed she had gotten into last night and she was still enveloped in Draco’s arms. Hermione checked the clock against the wall on the other side of the room and saw that it was only six o’clock in the morning.
“You’re already up?” Draco’s voice startled her. She adjusted her head to look at him and she saw that his eyes were closed by she felt his fingers trace patters against her skin. “I didn’t expect you to wake up till noon.” He continued. “You fell asleep late last night.”
“I don’t really trust anything around me when I’m asleep” Hermione told him. “Except you of course.” She added quickly.
“They won’t do anything to you.” Draco assured her, tucking her deeper into his body.
“I’m a muggle born Draco.” She told him. “And after all the trouble I’ve cost them in the past years, I’m not sure they could just let that go.”
He kissed the top of her head. “After all the trouble that you’ve cost them in the past years- imagine how much they will gain if they have you on their side, and imagine how joyous Voldemort will be if the Order lost you.” They were silent for a few moments. “It won’t be long till they call us upstairs.” He said in almost a whisper. “Listen to me Hermione. Their world – this world isn’t anything you’ve ever seen to you before. If you see me as the coldest person you’ve ever met, then you’ve got another thing coming. You need to be strong Hermione. You cannot show emotion, you can’t show that you care about anything in the world except for power. You can’t show them fear, or satisfaction in anything other than exceeding their expectations.” He said to her. “Do not give them anything to be interested in- don’t give them a past to see.”
Hermione didn’t look at him. Instead, her fingers traced the fading scars along his chest and shoulders. “You slipped up.” Hermione whispered.
“Yes I did.” Draco answered, his jaw clenching. “And I don’t want any of it to happen to you.” He said sounding angry without meaning to. “They’re calling for us.” He said.
“Granger.” Pansy drawled once she saw them emerge from the basement. “He wants the both of you.” She said. “You’ve got some guts coming back here with her.” Pansy said to Draco quietly. “You know that they won’t let her slip past easily.”
Draco tensed. “I know.”
Hermione and Draco entered the large room, and they were both immediately surrounded by a group of hooded figures. “My Lord.” Draco said, bowing his head down slightly. “You called for us?”
Voldemort nodded, looking at Hermione. “May I ask what you expect of me Draco?” he asked. “May I ask what you expect me to make of her?”
Draco grasped Hermione’s hands. “I request for you to allow her to join us.”
“Us?” Voldemort laughed maliciously. “How do you expect me to trust you again Draco? After all the trouble that you’ve put us through.”
“It was essential.” Draco said. “My lord.” He added shortly after. “It was essential to have them believe that I was no longer serving you.”
Voldemort stood, and began circling them much like the previous night. “And what about her?” he asked. “What would I gain if I were to induct her?”
“A powerful witch.” Draco answered. “And everything you need to know about the Order of the Phoenix.”
“Hm.” He said, considering the situation with a smirk. “I suppose that you were one of Dumbledore’s trusted students.”
“Y-yes.” Hermione said timidly. “My Lord.” She added softly.
“But dear girl- you are everything that we are against.” Voldemort said. “You are everything that we want to get rid of. You are everything that I hate.”
“Her heritage was misconstrued.” Draco spoke. “Her real mother and father were Jillian and Cato Larson.” He said. “They died years ago by the hand of James and Lily Potter, so Dumbledore handed her over to squibs who died later that very month from an attack by Death Eaters. She was then left in an orphanage, where two muggles picked her out and brought her home. She grew up raised as a muggle- but in truth, her blood is just as pure as any of us in this room.”
Hermione was surprised at how easily and swiftly Draco was able to lie. She had no idea when he was contemplating on this story, but it worked. She had heard of Harriet and Rockwell Larson who had a daughter that disappeared soon after they had died. “She is the Larson’s daughter- the one that you’ve been searching for, for so many years.”
“Cato Larson’s daughter?” Voldemort repeated. “This is Alaura Larson?”
“She is.” Draco said, glancing down at her. “I had guessed that this had been her after seeing her perform extraordinary magic- much more extraordinary for any mudblood to accomplish. Her physical features takes after Jillian when she her age, and her wit matches Cato’s.”
Voldemort strode around the room, reflecting over his story. “Show me this extraordinary magic.” He said. “Then I shall see whether or not you tell the truth Draco.”
“Yes, my Lord.” Draco said before he turned to Hermione. “You can do this.” He said. “Just be strong.”
“Step aside Draco.” Voldemort said, stepping towards them. “Lets see how powerful Alaura really is.”
Hermione braced herself for whatever was going to come after her next. Voldemort raised his wand before her eyes, and fire suddenly erupted from his wand and was running straight for her. Hermione held her hands up instinctively, expecting the fire to burn right through her flesh but instead; she felt hot wind sweep around her.
She carefully peeled her eyes open, and saw nothing but fire spinning around her as if she was in the inside of a tornado. The fire had spread around her, but it was as if it didn’t dare to come near her. Her body suddenly started moving on it’s own accord, and her hands reached out, her fingers brushing against the hot wind and suddenly, it was in her hands. Everyone around her was visible once more, and she could see the shocked expression on everyone’s faces but Voldemort’s. Her hands stretched, and the fire bounced off her and to the floor, creating a ring of fire around Voldemort.
“And there you have it.” Draco said as he stepped back next to Hermione. “I found how easy it was for her to control all four elements, and I knew that no mudblood could achieve that much power.”
Voldemort nodded, clearly impressed. He extinguished the fire around him, and stepped closer to Hermione. “Nicely done.” He said. “You’ve both proven yourselves to me- for now.” Hermione could’ve sworn that she heard Draco breath a sigh of relief, and she suddenly remembered what he had told her when they had both just woken up. ‘Don’t slip up.’
“But.” Voldemort added. “You’ve done your training Draco.” Voldemort said with a malevolent tone. “She, on the other hand has not.”
Draco nodded. “I understand.” The Death Eaters began filing out of the room, and Draco turned back to Hermione. “I’ll be right here with you.” He said. “I’m sorry, but he won’t let this pass.”
“Let what pass exactly?” Hermione asked still shaken up by what she had done moments ago.
“I’m sorry love.” He said, kissing her quickly on the lips and retreating to the corner of the room.
Hours passed, and the screaming still did not cease. Voldemort raised his wand over and over again, and Hermione screamed out in pain over and over again. Surprisingly, she had made several earthquakes spread through the ground, and had sprouted fire from her hands as the result of anger and frustration.
Draco sat at the corner of the room, trying to drown out her screams as it tore through him like a knife. He knew that he couldn’t help her no matter how much he wanted to and he knew that she understood that, but it still didn’t stop him from thinking about his training and how much it had hurt him. “Take her back down.” Voldemort said to Draco as he stared down at Hermione with a smirk on her face. “She’s progressing. We’ll pick it up tomorrow.”
Draco quickly ran to the limp body on the ground once Voldemort had exited the room. “Hermione?” she was breathing heavily, and her body seemed to be weak. He gathered her up in his arms, and quickly carried her down to the basement, where he set her down on the bed. “I swear to Merlin, if he’s scarred you-” Draco mumbled to himself as he tore open her shirt, and was thankful to find that he had only bruised her.
Draco tucked her under the covers, and fixed her hair around her head. “You’re strong enough to endure this, Hermione.” He said to her. “He wouldn’t have chosen you if you weren’t.”
Hermione’s training took place everyday, and everyday Draco sat at the corner of the room trying his best to hold still. He wanted so much to catch her when she had fallen, but he knew that he could not interrupt them at all. She was soon dueling with Voldemort, breathing out fire and ice.
Neither of them knew why Hermione suddenly possessed a power than none of them had, and Draco grew more and more worried each day. He knew that the Dark Lord wanted the power she had, he was training her for his benefit. No doubt those powers came in handy when he had tested her, but there was still the question of where it came from.
The Order of the Phoenix seemed to grow more and more vulnerable after they had all heard of Hermione and Draco’s flight. Dumbledore had never informed them of their plan, but instead he had told them of their betrayal. Neither Hermione nor Draco thought about the how vulnerable the Order would be once they had left, and they clearly regretted it once Voldemort began plotting on an attack later that night.
Blaise Zabini was the only one who knew what was going on. He was not stupid enough to believe Draco’s lies, and he was definitely not stupid enough to believe the mask Hermione had put on. But for the sake of his best friend and his girlfriend, he had kept his mouth shut.
Pansy had never ceased to be a nuisance to Draco and Hermione. She had constantly been clinging onto Draco, and glaring at Hermione when ever she passed by. His parents were no different. Evidently, Lucius and Narcissa were still angry with Draco for running away before, and they were even angrier that he had not told them of his plans.
“Pansy, will you please shut up?” Draco snapped, grasping Hermione’s hand in order to calm himself down. He suddenly felt a familiar burning sensation against his palm, and noticed that Hermione wasn’t anymore happier than he was.
“Yes Pansy.” Blaise said, striding into the room. “No one here wants to hear you whining.” Pansy glared at Blaise, but never the less she haughtily walked out of the room with her nose high in the air. “I don’t see how I ever stood up with that girl.” He said, holding a glass of firewhiskey in his hand. “So Alaura, how’s your training coming along?”
Hermione rolled her eyes, and turned around towards the cupboards to retrieve to full bottles of whiskey for both her and Draco. “Cut the crap Blaise.” He said. “We know well that you weren’t fooled.”
“May I ask why you weren’t?” Draco asked while taking the bottle Hermione had handed him.
“I’m not daft Draco.” Blaise said, giving him a look.
“And the Dark Lord is?” Hermione asked, smirking.
“He doesn’t know the both of you like I do.” Blaise replied. “But be careful.” He said. “We don’t want either of you falling through the cracks.”
Draco nodded. “How do you do it though?” Blaise asked Hermione. “How do you control the four elements?”
Hermione shrugged. “I have no idea.” She said. “I don’t even know how to control it.”
“Someone must’ve given it to you.” Blaise said, sitting down on the table in front of them. “You can’t just get magic powers out of no where.” He said. “And it’s very rare to find a wizard who can control elements without a wand.” Blaise thought for a moment. “No- not rare. I don’t think one even exists.”
“Don’t you think I know that?” Hermione snapped. “I’m just thankful that I got past Voldemort’s test.”
“You know you sure do have the temper of a death eater?” Blaise said defensively. “And I was beginning to worry that you may seem a bit too nice to be one.” He grabbed the bottle from the table, and left Draco and Hermione in the dark kitchen.
Hermione turned back to the counter, setting the glass down and turning to look at Draco. “How are you holding up?” he asked her. “We’ve been here for a week and I’m surprised to see that you haven’t gone insane.”
Hermione laughed softly. “It’s not that bad, enough for me to go insane.” She walked over, wrapping her arms around Draco’s waist. “It’s for the best right?”
Draco in turn drew her closer. “Right.”
A/N: i realized that i haven't updated in like what, 2-3 months? i'm so very sorry :( this chapter isn't much, but it's a filler.
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