Chapter 22 : Despair
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Ch. 22 Despair
“Hey have you seen Hermione?” Ginny asks Pansy who is standing with Troy and Narcissa.
“She went over that way, I think to the loo.” Pansy answers then turns to Troy.
“Thanks.” Ginny responds and heads toward the back of the pub. “Hey have either of you seen ‘Mione?” I ask Cassie and Glori who are standing not too far from the loo.
“Actually I did see her she was walking to the loo and she was with Draco.” Glori says then shrugs.
“Draco?” Ginny asks, “Are you sure?”
“Yeah, I saw then too, although when I walked past them, Draco looked weird, like maybe a little nervous.” Luna adds coming to stand next to us. “Maybe he needed to clear the wrakspurts from his head.” She says while gazing toward the loo.
Ginny shakes her head, and says “Thanks guys, I’ll check the loo, it’s getting pretty late.” Ginny continues toward the back corner, and runs into Angelina and Fleur, “Could you two sort of round everyone up so we can head back?” Ginny asks and they assure her they will.
Ginny finally enters the loo, “Hey ‘Mione, you in here?” She calls out.
“Not here.” say a couple different voices from inside and she laughs that anyone would answer.
“Thanks.” Ginny responds to the voices and leans down to look at the shoes of the women in there. No Mary Jane's.
Ginny gets an uneasy feeling in her stomach and leaves the loo, on her way out, she runs into Marcus standing not too far from the loo. “Hey Marcus, have you seen Hermione?”
“Ah, maybe.” He says and glances toward the little hallway where the doors to the loo are. “You know what is odd, is that I thought I saw her standing in front of you, and then apparate away just a minute ago.” He says looking confused.
Ginny feels her stomach drop a little, “Apparate?” She asks.
“Yeah, I thought it was you because I saw red hair, it’s not hard to miss.” He says and smiles a little still looking confused and a bit uneasy.
“Oh, no.” Ginny says barely above a whisper, feeling the blood rush from her head and swaying slightly.
Marcus grabs Ginny around the waist to keep her from falling and asks in concern, “Ginny, what’s wrong, who was it?”
Ginny feels tears of dread fill her eyes, but she blinks them away to get control of herself. “Marcus, I need your help.” She says with a bit more control. “I need you to find Alicia, and Narcissa. Do you know who Narcissa is?” Ginny asks looking up at Marcus.
“Um, yeah I think so she has long blonde hair and is wearing a Gryffindor dress, yes?” He says and Ginny nods. “Are you going to be okay?” He asks pulling his arm from her waist and placing his hands on her shoulders.
“I will be fine. I think.” She says then takes a deep breath and goes on, “I need you to get Alicia, tell her I put a locater spell on all the girls to make sure everyone gets home safely, tell her to find Angelina and Fleur, who are rounding everyone up. Then I need you to tell Narcissa to get Harry, I am going to Lucius.” Ginny says looking directly at Marcus. “Do you understand?” She asks.
“I understand, what do I tell them, they are going to panic, and honestly you are kind of freaking me out.” He says seriously, Ginny can see the worry in his eyes.
“Tell them exactly what you told me, but tell Narcissa to get Harry to the Manor, as fast as she can, I will be there.” Ginny says.
Marcus nods then with one last look at her he heads in to the crowd to find the girls.
Ginny glances around then moves to a dark corner making sure nobody is looking, she pulls out her wand and waves it in front of her. She sees no green dot, she curses to herself then glances around again and apparates to the manor.
“Lucius.” Ginny says on a gasp as she pops in to the sitting room of the manor. “Lucius.” She calls a little louder.
“Ginerva?” Lucius questions as he comes into the sitting room. “Why are you here?”
Ginny lowers herself into a chair and catches her breath. She looks up to Lucius and says, “We have a problem.”
Lucius takes one look into her eyes, and closes his, “Hermione.” He whispers, and then he opens his eyes and looks directly at Ginny, “What happened?”
Ginny quickly fills him in on what happened, then she adds, “I placed a spell on Hermione’s ah clothing, but it only works for up to five miles. I placed a spell on all the girls so that nobody would get left behind tonight.” She says then pulls out her wand and waves it around. “I checked the spell at the pub, and she was farther than five miles from there, I’m getting nothing.” She informs him.
Lucius looks impressed, “Very clever of you.” He says then runs his hands through his hair.
“Narcissa, and Harry should be here soon.” Ginny says. “We need to tell Draco.” She adds quietly.
Lucius nods and says, “Draco was supposed to be with Harry tonight, so I think we just need to wait.”
Lucius paces the room while Ginny stares off at nothing, after what feels like an eternity there are three distinct pops from the hallway then two more and five people rush into the sitting room.
“What happened?” Roars Draco as he runs in with Harry hot on his heels followed by Narcissa. Lastly Blaise comes in with Theodore looking formidable.
Ginny’s eyes fill with tears, but she quickly tells everyone what happened with out letting a single tear fall. Draco is furious and looking like he is going to explode. Harry looks calm but she can see the anger in his eyes.
“I’m sorry, I should have stuck to her side like glue.” She says softly feeling guilty and frustrated that she can’t fix it. She is also so very afraid for Hermione and the twins.
“Don’t blame yourself, dear, I should have realized that it wasn’t Draco when I saw them earlier.” Narcissa speaks up looking upset.
“Me?” Draco says turning to his mother.
“Yes I saw you walk up to her in the pub and then you both walked toward the loo, I should have realized that you wouldn’t have been there.” Narcissa says looking down at the ground.
“He used polyjuice potion.” Harry says stiffly, “Hermione, Ron and I did the same thing in second year.”
“I told Lucius that I placed a tracking spell on Hermione, and all the girls tonight, but it is only good for up to five miles.” Ginny says and waves her wand. A red dot glowed in front of her indicating Narcissa, “If there were any other girls around, there would be their initials in the colour of their ah knickers.” She finishes feeling silly now that this is so important, the knickers were supposed to be fun and helpful if anyone got lost, not taken.
“Very clever idea.” Theodore says, and then turns to Harry, “The Aurors, have they been tracking Weasley?”
“Yes, they have been trying to find him, he hasn’t been seen in magical London. He hasn’t been to work, or anywhere else. Draco and Hermione saw him at the bookstore once, but he left too quickly. Then again a couple weeks ago at The Burrow, which we changed the wards so that he couldn’t get close.” Harry explains. “We can’t place a tracking spell on him unless we got a hold of his wand, and if he is using polyjuice, there is no telling.” Harry says then lets out a frustrated sound.
“I don’t get this, he was my best mate, and I can’t believe he is this deranged.” Harry stops short, “The bloody threats have been him!” Harry goes pale and sits heavily on a chair.
“You think the threatening letters were from Ron?” Lucius asks confused and surprised.
“Yes.” Harry says sounding dejected.
“Wait, do you still have them?” Theo asks sounding hopeful and everyone looks at him.
“Yes, of course, why?” Draco answers still pacing like a caged tiger.
“It’s a long shot, but I have an idea. We use this spell sometimes when we need to find a client who has run out on a contract.” Theo explains quickly. “There is a charm you can place on the parchment, that will make it change, sort of like a map. Only it’s vague when it’s just plain parchment and not a magical contract.” He says.
“What will it do?” Blaise asks looking desperate.
“Well, I think it may give us a clue as to where to look, it’s a possibility that it could point us in a general direction, then if we get close enough we can use Ginny’s spell.” Theo explains.
“We can try it.” Narcissa says, “Draco, where are the parchments?”
“I’ll get them.” Blaise says and without waiting for a response, apparates away.
“Theo, can anything else help us find her?” Draco asks earnestly, looking desperate. “You work with this more often than I do.” He adds.
“Well, if we had something to connect her to one of us, or somebody.” Theo says his brow furrowing while he thinks.
“Lucius, ‘Mione’s ring?” Narcissa questions quietly looking at her husband while sliding her own ring around her finger.
Lucius looks confused for a moment then his eyes light up a little. “Her ring, Draco when you bought her ring did you have the magical spells put on it?”
“Of course, I did.” Draco scoffs looking irritated, stopping to frown at his father before resuming his pacing.
“When you buy a ring for an engagement and have the magical spells put on it, then you are connected to the ring.” Lucius says, “If the person wearing it says your name aloud, the person who gave the ring will be able to sense where the person is. The magic is stronger the longer you wear the ring, but I think this will work.” Lucius finishes looking slightly better than he did a moment ago.
“Yes, I agree that may work, but first Hermione has to say Draco’s name.” Theo reminds everyone.
Blaise pops back into the room with the parchment and hands them directly to Theo.
“Let me work with these for a minute.” Theo says and pulls out his wand. After a few minutes he says, “I may have something, lets go, everybody make sure you have your wands.”
We all move to the front of the Manor so that Theo can get a better reading as to which way to go. He waves his wand a few more times, then turn to us. “Lets all apparate to the Leaky Cauldron then go from there.” He turns and is gone with a pop.
Once we are all at there he tells us, “Follow me with a tracking spell.” We all follow him seeming to take forever, we apparate to a dark alley in muggle London.
Harry stops Theo and asks, “Are you sure, I can’t picture Ron in muggle London.”
“I am as sure as I can get.” Theo says.
“Of course, the Aurors only look in magical London. Maybe Ron is a bit smarter than we thought.” Harry says sounding dejected.
Then everyone turns to Draco as he gasps.
“She said my name I can feel it, she is that way.” He says and turns to his right, “Follow me.” He takes off at a jog, rather than apparating.
Ginny waves her wand, “She is in that building, we need to go in there.” She says sounding completely sure pointing to a dingy looking building, and taking off faster.
Ginny being so in shape gets there first and pulls open the door. She waves her wand and points to a staircase, “Third floor.” She says shortly and Draco takes off, with Harry right behind him.
Draco bursts into the hallway on the third floor, the door slamming against the wall and watches as Hermione slides down the wall to the floor almost at the other end of the hallway. He is shocked and angered at what he sees. She has bruises and blood on her face, hands, and arms. Her dress is torn and her arm looks like it is hanging funny as she tries to cradle it. She is crying and gasping for air. Draco is furious and wants to find Ron and kill him. Harry must have sensed what Draco wanted to do and he grabs his arm stopping him.
“Get Hermione out of here and get her help, I promise you I will get Ron and I will not let him off easy. Hermione is my friend, my family, and I love her.” Harry says and even though Draco wants to beat Ron then dump him into a hole to die, he nods stiffly at Harry. Harry lets him go and they take off down the hall as everyone else bursts through the door.
“Hermione!” Draco calls out his voice filled with panic and worry. He reaches her just as she passes out and wraps his arms around her. His first thought is to apparate to St. Mungos, but then he thinks about how that will affect her and the babies and he is afraid. He knows she doesn’t like to apparate any more because it makes her feel sick. He looks up as his mother and father kneel next to him. “ I don’t know if apparating will hurt them more, what do I do?” He asks sounding desperate. “I can’t loose her, she is so important.” He says his voice full of despair and tears freely flowing from his eyes. “I would do anything for her, and for my babies.”
Narcissa looks down at the couple and her heartbreaks seeing her son so afraid and Hermione broken, “Lucius go.” She says then turns to Draco as Lucius disapparates, “The healer said apparating would be fine until her next appointment which is in two weeks, I know she doesn’t like to do it, but I think you need to get her there quickly.” She says calmly even though she feels any thing but calm inside.
“My, babies, do you think they are okay?” Draco breathes looking bereft.
Narcissa feels tears in her eyes trying to spill over but she takes a deep breath and tries to be strong for her son, “Lucius is waiting for you, I’m sure they will be fine, Hermione and your babies.” She says looking directly in to his wild eyes, Draco nods looking wretched, and then closes his eyes; with a pop he and Hermione are gone.
Narcissa slumps to the ground feeling defeated and lets the tears finally fall hoping that Hermione and the babies are okay, not only for her son’s sake. She feels an arm around her waist as someone tries to support her and get her off the ground. Miserable and sick with fright, she looks up to see Blaise; he pulls her up from the ground and steadies them both.
“Hold on, Cissa, I am going to apparate us there while Harry and Theo get Ron.” Blaise says to Narcissa and she nods then they are gone.
Harry moves to the door a few feet from where Hermione was down the hall and pushes his anger down so that Ron doesn’t get away again. “We are going to go in slowly, hopefully since Hermione was out here he is some how incapacitated. We are going to stun only, death is too easy for what he has done to ‘Mione.” Harry says to Theo, “I need to know why, he needs to pay for what he has done.” Harry says quietly but vehemently and Theo reluctantly nods.
“Okay, you’re the Auror.” Theo agrees, “But I get to punch him at least once, did you see her face?” He asks roughly.
“Yes, I saw, and this is the second time he’s done this only I think this time it is worse.” Harry acknowledges and his voice breaks on the last word. He takes a deep breath and nods at Theo, then eases the door open. They walk into a filthy flat where Ron is sprawled on the sofa asleep. Harry raises his wand and shoots ropes out to tie up Ron who jerks coming wide-eyed the empty bottle hitting the floor with a dull thud.
“Harry?” He questions, then sees Theo, “What are you doing with him? He is a Slytherin, a Death Eater.” Then he must notice Hermione isn’t there, “Where’s Hermione? Did she go back to him, that poor excuse of a wizard?” He spits the questions harshly, but instead of either boy answering, Theo walks over and punches Ron in the face, his head snapping back.
Ron grunts as Theo pulls him up off the sofa, and punches him again this time in the stomach. Ron releases a gush of air and groans as he collapses to the floor, “I did say at least once, I felt more like twice.” Theo shrugs then looks down at Ron, kicks him once in the ribs feeling satisfied when he hears a crack, then points his wand at Ron and stuns him with a smile on his face. “Okay, maybe more like three times.”
I apologize to my wonderful and faithful readers...I have been super busy but after re-doing last chapter a half dozen times to get it validated I had to take a breather. I do have the next chapters ready and waiting once this on gets validated. I love all of your reviews, please please let me know what you think!! :) Thanks again for reading and reviewing! :)
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