Chapter 33 : Waiting for the Cures
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P.S. I'm awful with staying constant with formating so in this chapter, Marcus speak is surrounded by quotes and italic, and all italic text is Hermione's thoughts.
Hermione swallowed hard. She didn’t like this at all. She trusted Harry. She trusted Draco. She trusted Ginny. Hell, she even trusted the Weasley’s, even though they hadn’t been there for so long. The person she didn’t trust was herself. She sat on an armchair, away from the others staring out the window. It was raining, and she tried not to let it change her mood, but it did. It ruined whatever happiness she might have had. She wondered if there were dementors watching them. She wouldn’t put it past the Dark Lord. She remembered when Virginia had told him. The laugh he had given and then his words.
“Crush that filthy mudblood then Virginia. She doesn’t deserve to share a body with you. Crush her.”
Hermione couldn’t understand why Virginia hadn’t. She had said nothing to the Dark Lord in response. Nor did she make any attempts at removing Hermione from the equation. She watched the rain slide down the window pane and fought back her own tears.
The final horcrux was sitting around her neck. She touched it softly and felt its evil. How, she hadn’t noticed that evil vibe when she received it as inheritance, she could only guess. When Harry had been rambling about it and the initials he and Dumbledore had found, she had remembered. She barely got out the word Horcrux before Virginia took over. She just barely made it to Malfoy Manor. She was lucky, they were all lucky.
Mr. Weasley had given her a potion that sedated Virginia. She didn’t like it, but the quiet was nice. The sword of truth was quiet as well. She touched that next to the horcrux and heard him hiss.
“The evil energy is messing with my magic.” She nodded to herself, but she couldn’t take it off. Virginia would kill to get it back. It was safer on her neck, where only she could get harmed by Virginia’s wrath.
“Why are you so afraid of her?” Hermione ignored Marcus. She wouldn’t be honest if she spoke her thoughts so she remained silent. She felt Draco’s eyes on her. He was worried she knew. She sent a smile his way. They were the only ones still awake. The others had turned in for much needed sleep. Tomorrow would be crazy. Hermione didn’t want to sleep. She knew she would meet the sedated Virginia in her dreams. Taking a deep breath, she rolled her sleeve back down and adjusted to face her fiancé.
“It’s not running away, Hermione.” Hermione silently nodded trying to show no response. Since when did Draco know her so well. She hated that she had run away then, it had been a big cause of this mess, in her eyes anyway. She wanted to drown out Draco’s words but her mind wouldn’t focus on anything but his rich concerned voice.
“We’ll stay at the safe house until Harry can come with the sword.” Hermione felt herself touching the pedant on her neck.
“Sorry love, I don’t have that kind of magic.”
“Then he’ll destroy it and well join the fight.” Hermione swallowed.
“The moment she wakes up, she’s going to send a message. Her powers are too strong, Draco. They’ll know all the plans before I can even blink.” Hermione could feel her arms shake. Draco could see it and he place a calming hand on her cheek.
“They’ll bring the fight to us then. We’ll kick their asses.” Hermione shook her head again.
But what side will I be on…
The next hour passed by too quickly. Harry was downstairs nodding toward Hermione to soon. Ginny stood in the doorway. Draco left a kiss on Hermione’s cheek. Before he could walk away she kissed him, hard. She was worried about the outcome of all this. She had such a bad feeling.
“I’ll be there in an hour.” Hermione nodded at him. They clasped hands and slowly let go. The snake watched his prey disappear within green flames.
Draco and Ginny pulled out their wands. It was time to be on edge. The fight was starting.
Hermione passed the kitchen of the two room apartment. She could feel Virginia stirring. The sedative was wearing off. There had been no time to make more. Hermione knew she was lucky to have gotten the first dose.
Virginia’s voice was weak and slow in her head. It gave her some brief joy. Harry watched her pace. It was the calm before the storm, they all knew it. A crazy reality awaited them. Hermione went over the plan in her head for the sixth or seventh time.
Get to the safe house with Harry. Harry to avoid suspicion from the Dark Lord. Virginia’s assignment involves him.
Harry and Draco trade place an hour later.
Hermione and Draco wait at the apartment while Harry goes back to Hogwarts to get the sword of Gryffindor.
Meanwhile Ginny will be gathering Harry’s side of the Death Eater’s and distracting the Dark Lord with a battle.
Harry would return with the sword, destroy the horcrux while Draco dealt with Virginia.
The three of them would then join the fight and Harry would end this battle once and for all with the promised duel.
Hermione felt her stomach sink. Something was going to go wrong. She knew it. Somewhere deep in her heart she knew this was going to end badly. She just knew.
“Calm down. Draco will be here soon.” Hermione sent a glare at Harry.
“She’s waking up I can feel it. That sedative wasn’t strong enough. She’s going to send the message. Its going to all blow up.” Hermione was passing again. Harry sighed angrily before leaving for the one bedroom. When he came back, a pile of books sat in his hand. He dumped them on the table and pulled her over.
“Fix something!” He shouted in exasperation. “I don’t care what just try to fix something. Read whatever you always did at Hogwarts. Just do it instead of pacing and complaining. Three knocks came from the door. Draco and Harry said words and then Draco was sitting next to her. She was reading. Virginia was stirring. The fight was starting. Everything felt wrong. Everything was amiss. Something unexpected had happened she knew it. She held no other explanation for her stomach bubbling and turning.
That was lie. She had another explanation, one she needed to tell Draco about. Not yet. After the fight. After everything.
She closed her eyes and thought back to that day.
I’ll never forgive myself…
She let a faint smile return to her face as she combed the potions book. This book was like the others she’d read in school. It wasn’t a recipe book. She reveled in the difference of looking into the theories of potion making. Every word told her why potions were made, how they started, and how you turn water into life. Virginia was even satisfied by this reading. It challenged them both. They both had one common goal, although they would not use it the same way.
“The cure…” Hermione whispered. Draco glanced at her from his closed eyed position on the couch but she was so enveloped in the book, he didn’t say a word. Her orders from Voldemort couldn’t have been clearer.
Virginia, we once had a talk about power. Right now I hold the power over Harry and his fools of friends. However, sooner or later that hold will fail. It will kill my followers before it even gets close to killing Potter. Find the cure. You have a week. The first death from the potion will occur then. If you don’t prevent it, then you too will drink the potion. To speed your mind to find the cure before more deaths happen. I cannot allow my power to shift Virginia. Neither can you, with our plans.
Hermione hated finding the cure for him, and knew she would give it to Harry and Draco first then the Dark Lord. Virginia had other plans. She was voicing them now, with her vindictive but weak voice in the back of Hermione’s brain. Hermione let her lips form a smirk of the dominance she had over the voice in her skull.
A thin finger traced down the known theories of potions. It stopped on the third one. The law of balance. Hermione gasped as she read it. She read it again to be sure. A third reading made her believe she hadn’t read wrong.
“Draco!” The man was a sleep. Hermione wanted to laugh. What a great help he was. She punted a pillow at him. He woke with a jerk.
“Wwaakt?” The noise made her chuckle. “’mione? You okay?” She smiled at him and nodded.
“Listen to this Draco. The Law of Balance states that for every potion that is synthesized the opposite potion exists. For every poison, there is the perfect antidote. For every love potion, there is an equally powerful hate potion. In fact even liquid death’s powers are matched by that of liquid life. Although not every potion has a synthesized opposite that opposite does exist and can be synthesized using the properties of the potion and its ingredients.” She finished reading and look at Draco happily. “Do you know what this means?”
Clueless, Draco shook his head. She had spoken too fast and with too much vigor for him to fully comprehend what she had even said. He was still catching up on her words, let alone their meanings. She just beamed.
“There is a cure. This is proof. Then look at the next one. The rule of counter. It states that if you take the two potions form the law of balance and mix them. The potion that exists will then nullify the effects of both potions. Draco this is it! All I have to do is find the balance to the Polythemus potion and then make it. Then you, and Harry, and Ginny, and everyone else will be cured.” Draco smiled but Hermione saw the way it strained his eyes. Fake.
“That’s great Hermione. After today, I’ll help you every step of the way.” Hermione put her book down and stood. She took the seat next to Draco and touched his cheek.
“Draco, what’s wrong?” She brought her face close to hers. “I know you aren’t lying.” She spared a moment to gesture at the sword at her neck. “But you’re smiles fake sweetie.” Draco frowned and kissed her a moment, then pulled away and wrapped his hand around hers.
“The Dark Lord ordered you to find the cure, did he not?” Hermione nodded while biting her lip painfully. “He told you someone would die in a week, did he not?” Hermione nodded again. “I know who will die.” Hermione couldn’t help herself from the dramatic gasp. “Its … -“
A knock on the door stopped the conversation. Both Hermione and Draco were standing in an instant. Wands were ready. A silence swept the room. Everything else didn’t matter. Harry was here and now it was time to end the war. Time to destroy Voldemort. It was time to take back their lives, their world, and their future.
It was time.
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