Chapter 1 : This is your mission, if you should choose to accept it.
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**Thank you, thank you, thank you Mischief_managed18 for editing for me! You truly are the best!! :D**
Hermione Granger sat, while fidgeting nervously, in the chair facing Dumbledore's desk. The letter he had sent her, early that morning, was still clenched in her hand. She watched Professor Dumbledore quizzically, as the quill in his hand scratched quickly across a roll of parchment. It struck her as odd that he had summoned her to his office, and her alone. She was specifically told not to bring, or speak of this meeting with Harry Potter or Ronald Weasley.
Dumbledore finished with what he was writing, rolled up the parchment and sealed it in an envelope, with a sigh. It made Hermione a little uneasy to see a man, as powerful as Dumbledore, look so tired and defeated. Finally, the piercing blue eyes - which, Hermione was surprised to see, looked sad - of Albus Dumbledore, bore into the anxious brown eyes of Hermione Granger. "I would like to thank you Miss Granger for agreeing to meet with me this evening. I am afraid I have a rather large task to ask of you," Dumbledore said solemnly, while Hermione's was becoming more nervous by the moment.
"Yes sir. What would this task be?” she asked, trying to keep her voice from shaking.
She had been rather curious since she received an owl from Dumbledore this morning, requesting she meet him in his office at 8 pm sharp and not to mention a word of it.
"You see, Miss Granger. As you know, Harry, Mr. Weasley and yourself have successfully destroyed all of Lord Voldemort's Horcruxes, but he still remains at large. As hard as I may have been trying, I have detected neither hide nor hair of him. All along I believed Lily dying to protect Harry was a fool proof way of Voldemort reaching his demise. I believe I may have been mistaken. I am relatively sure if we ensure Lily and James remain alive, Voldemort will meet an earlier end," he said.
"But sir, the prophecy?" she asked quickly, obviously confused.
"Miss Granger, do you honestly believe that all of the prophecies that lie in that hall come true? Or for that matter, are accurate? Certainly not," he said kindly.
Hermione began to realize what the task would be. She would have to go back in time. To what moment, she was not sure, but she knew she would be going.
"Please, sir? So am I right to assume you are sending me back in time, to alter the past?" she asked him.
Dumbledore smiled at the girl, his blue eyes twinkling.
"But sir, I thought all the Time-Turners had been destroyed the night Sirius died?" Hermione asked.
"Ah, but you see, Miss Granger, I happened to have had one in my possession on that very night. I've kept it ever since; waiting for the right time and the right reason to use it, and as it seems, that time would be now," he said rather happily.
"How, sir? How am I to do this?" she asked, her voice thick and desperate.
"Miss Granger, I am afraid I cannot give you the answer to that. It is something you have to discover on your own." he said, looking at her over the top of his half-moon spectacles.
"Yes sir," she answered quietly. “I understand.”
"Now if you choose to accept, and I feel that you will, I will have everything necessary for you to return to Hogwarts in 1977 ready for you. I know you missed your opportunity to complete your seventh year while you were hunting Horcruxes. You will now be given the chance to do that as well, even if it will be in the past. You will be given a letter explaining who you are and why you are there to my younger self, gold for your clothing, books, and other essentials, as well as paperwork proving your new identity. Would there be a specific name you would like to use? I do not feel comfortable with you using your given name. It would not do well for us to have Lord Voldemort learn who you were and then proceed to try and kill you while you are a child," he said seriously to her.
"I understand sir,” she said, a shiver running down her spine. "May I still keep Hermione? It would be much more natural for me to respond to people that way and I wouldn’t have as much trouble easing into this whole thing,” she asked, looking hopeful for that one piece of her true life.
"I do not see the harm in that, Miss Granger," answered Dumbledore kindly. "I believe we need also come up with a believable back story as to why you are not entering Hogwarts until your final year," he added.
"Ok. Then I will be, Hermione Winters. We can say I am a transfer from The States. We moved there when I was ten due to my father's work,” she began, her face concentrated. “Both my mother and father were recently killed in a car accident, which meant I had to return to England since I have no family in The United States. You, of course, remember my mother from her days at Hogwarts, which enabled me a smooth transfer for my final year. How does that sound, Professor? Believable enough?" she asked him.
"My dear, I do not think I could have come up with anything better myself," he said, his blue eyes twinkling down at her once more.
"When will I be leaving, sir?" she asked, trying to prepare herself.
"I will allow you to return to your dormitory for the evening and give some more thought to the seriousness of this task I lay in front of you. There will be no reason for you to mention this to anyone, Miss Granger. When you return to the present, you will be returning the exact moment you originally left. Besides the fact that you will age normally for the amount of time you are there, it will be as if you never left," he informed her.
Hermione did not think of that. If this takes her, for instance, two years to accomplish, she will have appeared to age two years within mere seconds. It was quite a thing to take in.
"Miss Granger?" Dumbledore said quietly, noticing the girl had suddenly turned very pale.
"I'm ok sir. I'm sorry, it's just a lot to take in," she said.
"Quite understandable. I would at least like you to know the reason behind me asking so much of you. You are exceedingly clever, more clever than most, and you are also exceptionally brave. Those two traits rarely go hand-in-hand. I do not feel I could trust this task to anyone else," he said sincerely.
Hermione felt nothing but shock and gratitude for Professor Dumbledore's words. "Thank you, sir. That means more to me than you know," she said with a tear in her eye.
Dumbledore patted her shoulder and said, "Go back to your dormitory and get some rest, Ms. Granger. Please be at my office by 9 am with whatever belongings you wish to take with you, but keep things to a minimum," His piercing blue eyes shining with pride while looking at the extremely brave young woman sitting before him.
Harry had only just destroyed the final Horcrux less than a week prior. Upon returning to Hogwarts, she, Harry, and Ron had taken their places back in Gryffindor tower for the time being. Hermione was planning to return to her classes for the remainder of the school year, while Harry and Ron remained undecided. She made her way to the portrait hole in a daze. Soon she realized that she did not even remember how she had made it there and was giving the password, "Phoenix Tears,” to the Fat Lady. Relief flooded her when she climbed through to see the common room empty. She did not feel she had it in her to act as if nothing happened. Not when she currently had the weight of the world on her shoulders. How am I going to do this? She thought to herself.
How am I going to face seeing Harry's parents and Sirius knowing they're all dead? What if I fail? How do I face Peter Pettigrew without whipping out my wand on the spot to kill him? The traitorous little rat... What on earth have I gotten myself into?
Hermione made her way up the stairs into the girl’s dormitory and was happy to see that the other girls were fast asleep. Making her way to her bed she did a summoning charm for a few pictures and clothing she would be taking with her. She sealed her curtains around her bed shut, pointed her wand at them and whispered, "Muffilato". Hermione then cried herself to sleep worrying about the future, well past technically, that now lay in front of her.
Hermione woke at six AM the following morning, not having had much luck with sleep. Not wanting to run into Harry or Ron, she jumped quickly out of bed, gathered her belongings and made her way to the bathroom to have a shower before she left. After her shower she set to finding something acceptable to wear in 1977, as she would find herself in that year shortly. She was extremely thankful her current time period's fashion was, obviously, influenced by the 70's.
After some digging, she found a white peasant top with blue embroidery around the collar, a pair of flared blue jeans and white trainers. Trying to fix her hair next, she parted it down the middle and placed a straightening charm on it so it flowed long and frizz-free down to her waist. Looking at herself in the mirror she thought, Good enough, I suppose. With a sigh, she proceeded to make her way to the Great Hall to grab a quick bite to eat and then would make her way to Dumbledore's office. She had been very careful to avoid Ron and Harry all morning.
At 9 am sharp Hermione was standing in front of the gargoyle statue saying, "Fudge Flies,” then watched the stairs seem to rise from nowhere and she made her way up to the Headmaster's office.
"Come in, Miss Granger," Dumbledore called as she knocked at the door. "Ah, excellent job on your choice of clothing. You will fit in perfectly," he said with a sad smile.
"Thank you sir," she said as calmly as she could.
"Now Miss Granger,” Dumbledore began with purpose. “You will be arriving at King’s Cross Station with the rest of the students the moment you arrive in 1977. Try if you can, to get close to James, Lily, Sirius, Remus and, yes Miss Granger, Peter as well as quickly as you can. The sooner you complete this, the less you will age and no one will have realized you were gone. No one besides James, Lily, Remus, Sirius and Peter, as they will be sure to recognize you when they meet you again," he said and Hermione merely nodded.
She felt like if she were to open her mouth to speak, she just might lose her breakfast.
"Miss Granger, I will ask you only once more. Are you sure you want to go through with this?" he asked sternly, surveying her over the top of his half-moon spectacles.
She took a deep breath to center herself before she looked him straight in the eye and said with a strong voice, "Yes sir. I can do this".
"Excellent! Now, here is all the essential paperwork you will need. I looked back on all my previous passwords for my office and it looks as if, 'Jelly Slug', was used the fall of 1977," he said with a wink.
He handed Hermione an envelope with a letter to the younger Dumbledore, her transfer papers, and proof of her new identity. She grabbed her trunk and took the Time-Turner from Dumbledore as well.
"I have already set it correctly for you to arrive at the proper moment and place. If you need anything while you're there, I know I would be more than happy to help you Miss Granger. Be safe and good luck," he told her.
"Thank you, sir. I will see you soon, I suppose," she said, her brow furrowed at the idea of all the implications coming with this task. Mere seconds would pass for Dumbledore and yet, she had no idea how much time would pass for her. What her face would look like. If she would even make it.
She did not look it, but she was terrified beyond comprehension. How she stood there so calmly she would never know. Once she activated the Time-Turner, everything around her suddenly became a blur of whirling colors. Although, she believed herself to be prepared for the sensation of travelling backwards through time, this time it felt much more intense. She had the sensation of falling a great distance and was becoming quite dizzy.
All at once, everything had stopped and she felt as if she were thrown to the ground. As she stood – heart pounding wildly and feeling more alone than she ever has – she put the Time-Turner around her neck, and stuffed it down the front of her shirt. A feeling of intense anxiety, mixed with triumph washed over her. She did it; she was in the 70's.
Slowly, she walked into the train station, found a trolley for her belongings, and began her path towards Platforms nine and ten on shaky legs. Deep breaths, Granger. You can do this. Just keep your wits about you, she tried to convince herself. Grasping the handle of her trolley so tightly, her knuckles were white; she ran at the wall between the two platforms.
Once through, she gazed around the familiar Platform 9 3/4, and saw the large scarlet steam engine - The Hogwarts Express - she was completely shocked. Everything looked exactly the same, except for some of the wilder clothing some of the students were wearing. There was leather and fringe and tie dye and flowers everywhere around her. Most of the boys had hair almost as long as hers. Her outfit was quite tame, but it did not stand out as anything abnormal. She fit in well enough. As she stood looking around terrified – Ok. Now what? Should I seek out Harry’s parents? Or should I find a compartment, before they all fill up – she heard a voice not too far away to her right. Something about that voice sounded very familiar to her. She turned her attention towards the speaker and recognized him immediately.
"Oi, Prongs. Check it out. Fresh meat," said an extremely handsome boy.
He had the most beautiful long dark hair, which fell right to his shoulders, she had ever seen on any boy. Then there were his well-toned arms, broad shoulders and striking grey eyes. The boy he was talking to looked so much like Harry she couldn't believe it. Everyone had always told Harry that he looked so much like his father, and they could not have been more right. The only difference was this boy's hazel eyes and forehead free of any scars. That’s when knew that she was looking at a young Sirius Black and James Potter. Oh my! I – I don’t know if I can do this. I did not expect to see them so soon! She almost couldn't breathe. Seeing the two young men, it completely captivated her. She could not believe how young they were. Not to mention, how alive they both were, as well. Hermione was not able to unlock her eyes from Sirius’.
"Not bad, Padfoot, not bad at all," said James as he and Sirius were checking out the new girl.
Hermione didn't realize she was still watching Sirius until she heard, "I think you may have a chance, mate. Look at her staring over here," James said to Sirius with a grin.
"Well then, let’s not deprive the poor dear of my presence any longer, shall we?” Sirius said with a wicked smile.
Oh bugger! Pull it together, she scolded herself, while quickly averting her eyes. With the speed of person who was caught doing something horribly wrong, she began to walk to the train. Just as she thought she was free and clear; someone tapped her on the shoulder. Maybe it’s somebody else? They wouldn’t have followed a girl they do not even know, would they? Guilt, disappointment, nervousness and – something that really surprised her – relief engulfed her as she turned and looked right into his beautiful grey eyes.
"Hello there, beautiful. I don't think we have ever seen you before,” Sirius nearly purred at her.
Hermione felt her heart skip a beat and an odd sensation form in the pit of her stomach, something no one – not even Victor or Ron – has ever made her feel before. Holy cow he was gorgeous, was the first thought to cross her mind. Blinking a bit, she tried to get her head back on track. Get a hold of yourself, Hermione. This is Sirius. You knew him as a man. When you return he'll either be dead or Harry's much older Godfather.
Felling rather embarrassed of herself – she was not one to be so easily distracted by a handsome face – she responded quietly, "That's because I'm new here. I'm a transfer from The Salem Witch Institute". She hoped beyond hope she sounded convincing.
"But that's in the States. Why do you not have an accent?" he asked, his head cocked to the side.
I didn’t even consider that! "Well I'm originally from England,” she quickly recovered. “My father's work transferred him to Pennsylvania when I was ten. My-my parents died this summer in a car crash. The only family I have now is a Great Aunt here in England, so... here I am," she said in a soft voice.
She shocked herself with how convincingly she had just lied, yet was mentally patting herself on the back for how smoothly the words flowed from her mouth.
Sirius looked down at his trainers while running his hand nervously through his hair. "I'm so sorry to hear that." he said, clearly feeling horrible for the poor girl. Looking back up at her – with evident interest in his eyes – he held out his hand for Hermione to shake, and flashed her a brilliant smile. "Well let me introduce myself. I am the, ever famous, Sirius Black," he let go and then sank into an overly-exaggerated bow. "And this ugly brute,” gesturing towards a smiling James, “is the one and only, James Potter".
As Sirius was introducing him, James took Hermione's hand and kissed it. She couldn't help but giggle and blush at the pair of them.
Oh these two are something else, she thought, amused. "It's a pleasure. I'm Hermione Winters,” she said, still smiling.
"You two harassing this poor girl?" asked a soft voice from behind her.
Hermione turned around and almost gasped in shock. She was now seeing a young Remus Lupin. It was all becoming a little overwhelming for her. He – He looks amazing! This is unreal, Hermione thought in amazement, while taking in Remus’ face. He was not as scratched, thin or shabby looking as she remembered. His hair was shaggy and dirty blond, and he had a much more defined upper body and so much more light and happiness in his golden-honey colored eyes.
"Well Moony, the poor little thing just looked so lost and lonely. I couldn't deprive her of my company for a moment longer," said Sirius cheekily.
Hermione snorted at Sirius’ overconfidence and rolled her eyes. Lupin and James sniggered while Sirius’ lips turned down into a frown.
Holding out her hand to Lupin, she introduced herself. "Hermione Winters. Transfer from the Salem Witch Institute,” she said with a smile, which Lupin returned.
"Nice to meet you Hermione. My name is Remus Lupin," he said, although she was already more than aware. "Don't let these two tossers fool you. They're nowhere near as sweet and innocent as they'll pretend to be,” he told her before adding a wink.
Trust me, I know. "I'll keep that in mind," she said with a laugh.
Sirius gasped theatrically and placed his hand over his heart, while James pretended to clutch Sirius's shoulder for support. "Do my ears deceive me? Did dear Reumus just say we would pretend to be innocent?" Sirius said with mock hurt and disappointment.
"I believe he did, mate. How could he ever speak of us in such a way?" James said in a similar fashion.
Lupin rolled his eyes while Hermione laughed, and they proceeded to make their way onto the train. Hermione tried to keep her head down while following the boys to an empty compartment. She noticed different students pointing and whispering to one another. It was highly unusual for Hogwarts to receive a transfer student and she wondered at this point if they ever had. Obviously she would be an object of curiosity for quite some time and it left her feeling rather uncomfortable.
Hermione saw Sirius look at some boys pointing towards her. “Don’t worry about those tossers, Hermione. No one will bother you while you’re with us,” he gloated.
Knowing that he was probably right, she gave Sirius a tight smile. “Thank you.”
Once they found an empty compartment and all sat down, Remus began speaking with Hermione again. "So what year are you in?" he asked her.
"I'm in my seventh year. It's kind of strange to be finishing my last year in a completely new environment, I have to admit," she said, close to tears. Because that part actually wasn’t a lie. It may be the same school, but there will be completely different students. Even some of the teachers would be different.
"Aw don't worry about that. We're all in our seventh year as well. We'll keep you close and make you feel welcome and comfortable. Hopefully you'll be in Gryffindor with the rest of us," Remus said kindly.
"Gryffindor?" she asked, feigning ignorance. She was, after all, from a different school.
"Well Hogwarts has four houses,” He began. “They are Gryffindor-" as he said this James and Sirius pretended to pull out swords and duel. Remus rolled his eyes, again, and continued. "Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff and Slytherin."
As he mentioned Slytherin James said, "Slimy gits.”
Hermione couldn't help but laugh. "Well I hope I am in Gryffindor then. You have all been exceptionally kind to me so far," she told them, honestly praying the Sorting Hat put her in Gryffindor once more.
"Our daring, nerve and chivalry set us Gryffindors apart," James joked.
Soon after a slightly shorter, blonde, somewhat handsome, though not as handsome as the other three, watery eyed boy came into the compartment. "Hermione Winters, this little git is Peter Pettigrew," said Sirius.
Her body seemed to tense up at the sight of Peter and her eyes narrowed. Reminding herself that she was not supposed to know him, let alone have any feelings towards him, either way. She rearranged her face into a smile. Easy, Hermione, she told herself while she tried with all of the strength she could manage to remain calm and civil. "Pleasure," she said shortly.
Peter looked a little shocked at the less than warm introduction to this girl. "Hi," he squeaked.
The day went on as they traveled through the country side. James and Sirius showing off and making jokes, Remus very often rolling his eyes, and Peter applauding and making a fool of himself watching the pair of them. Hermione rather enjoyed herself with the boys, even though, it was still rather strange to be sitting and joking with these young men. Much sooner than she realized, they were pulling into Hogsmeade station.
"Come on, Hermione. We take the carriages up to the school," Sirius said, holding out his hand for her.
Looking down at his hand for a moment, she debated on taking it or not. Oh hell. Why not? She took his hand to be polite and noticed her heart was pounding at his touch.
Don't be ridiculous! You are not here for any other reason than to save these men and Lily. Don't let his looks become a distraction. She thought.
As they sat in the carriage riding up to the school Hermione said, "I'm supposed to see a..." , she looked down at a piece of paper trying to act as if she could not remember the head master's name, "Dumbledore? Before I go anywhere else I was told."
"I'll show you to his office before we head to the feast," Lupin said with a smile.
Hermione noticed Sirius looking very displeased with this. She found herself unable to stop the smirk that appeared on her face.
They finally arrived at the school, and Hermione found herself extremely comforted in seeing Hogwarts looking exactly the same. The winged boar statues, the Black Lake - glistening slightly in the moonlight - the gas lanterns twinkling throughout the school and the Quidditch pitch far in the distance. The familiar surroundings seemed to calm her down a bit as she felt her shoulders relax the tiniest amount and her breathing even out. When Hermione and the boys exited the carriage and walked into the entrance hall, Lupin steered her away from the rest of the boys. Hermione gave them a small wave and a nervous smile, while promising to see them later. Lupin lead Hermione to the bust of the stone Gargoyle, and as they stood there, Lupin looked at her sadly. "I'm sorry, but I don't know the password," he said to her.
"That's ok, I have it on this paper. Thank you for showing me the way and being so kind to me today. I'll see you for dinner then?" she asked.
He smiled warmly at her, "Yeah you will and it was no problem at all, Hermione. It was so nice to meet you and I really hope you're in our house!" He turned and made his way to the Great Hall.
She then said, "Jelly Slug," and made her way up the stairs and knocked on the door. Her heart felt as if it were about to beat out of her chest.
"Come in," she heard a familiar, albeit younger voice say.
Hermione walked in and Dumbledore stared at her in surprise, "Well hello there, Miss. I wasn't expecting any visitors at the moment," he said while surveying her over his half-moon spectacles as he has done so many times before in the future. Though this Dumbledore was much younger, his face softer and less wrinkle-filled, his hair not quite as silver, and he seemed to be holding himself differently.
She took a deep breath. Here it goes, she prepared herself. "Please sir, my name is Hermione Granger, but for the duration of my stay here, I will be Hermione Winters," Dumbledore did not say anything, but looked at her questioningly. "You've sent me here, sir. From the year 1998, that is. I'm here to set a certain chain of events right. I have an envelope to give you from yourself in the future," she walked over to his desk and handed him the papers. “I know it sounds mental, Sir, but I swear, I speak the truth.”
Dumbledore took them out and read them over, an occasional "Hmm,” "Oh yes" and "I see" was all he said. After ten minutes he put the papers down and looked up smiling at her. "Well it seems that is indeed the case, Miss Granger. Or, should I say, Winters".
Hermione let out a sigh of relief, extremely grateful for whatever the Dumbledore or the future had written for his younger self. "Thank you sir," she said.
"Well, it seems I have advised myself here, it will be in your best interest not to tell anyone who you really are, or where you've come from. If you would like, I shall accompany you down to the Great Hall and we could get you sorted. I know you are already a Gryffindor, but to keep up with the transfer pretense, you will have to be resorted. Do not worry, after the bravery it has taken for you to do this, I have no doubt you will remain in Gryffindor," he said, his eyes twinkling familiarly.
Hermione smiled and nodded, "I understand sir".
"Shall we then, miss Winters?" he asked.
Professor Dumbledore and Hermione entered the Great Hall and it seemed that every eye was on her. Wanting to just run towards her table and hide, she looked towards the Gryffindors and made eyed contact with Sirius; as she did so, he winked and smiled at her. For some reason, that seemed to make her feel a bit better. Shaking her head as if to clear it, she continued to walk alongside Dumbledore. Together, they made her way towards the staff table as the last of the first years was being sorted. "RAVENCLAW!" the hat shouted as a tiny, terrified looking, sandy haired little boy made his way to his new house's table. Dumbledore whispered something to Professor McGonagall who turned and looked at an extremely nervous Hermione, and smiled kindly.
"Certainly Albus,” she heard her say.
Dumbledore turned to the school and said, "As I am sure you have all noticed by now – as unorthodox as it may be - we have a new student.” Every last student was now looking right at Hermione. She felt her face heat up and began shuffling her feet nervously. “This is Miss Hermione Winters who, due to personal matters, had moved back home to England from The United States. We will all do our best to make sure she feels welcomed and comfortable as I am sure she feels nervous enough – beginning her final year in a new environment.” He paused to give the students a stern look and then gestured towards the Sorting Hat. “She will be sorted into her house and then we shall begin our excellent feast".
Hermione walked up and sat down on the stool, trembling softly. Professor McGonagall said quietly to her, "I will place this hat on your head, and it will sort you into your house. Your house will be like your family while you're here. It is where you will sleep and spend most of your free time. Nothing to worry about, dear."
She placed the hat on her head, Hmmm. Exceedingly bright mind. Exceptional courage. Rather difficult I'm afraid... Hmm... Gryffindor or Ravenclaw? It does seem the courage does slightly outshine the brains. Well. Better be... "GRYFFINDOR!" the hat shouted out. Hermione sighed with relief.
The Gryffindor table erupted in applause, the loudest coming from her new found friends. She made her way over as Sirius and Lupin moved to make room for her to sit between them.
"Well done, Hermione! I'm so pleased!" Lupin said brightly.
"Thank you. I'm so happy I was put somewhere with familiar faces," she said, actually meaning it.
"You're just happy because now you get to see me all the time," Sirius said giving her a little poke in her side.
Hermione jumped, squealed and smacked him upside his head. "Watch yourself, Black!" she scolded loudly.
James, Lupin, and Peter stared shocked with their mouths hanging open. They could not believe she just smacked him in the head. Normally the girls giggle and flirt disgustingly with him. Then, all of a sudden, the three of them rolled with laughter.
"I like this one. She'll put you right in your place, Padfoot!" James said through his laughter.
"Yes, Hermione. I think you're going to fit in quite well. Plus, Sirius needs to be knocked down a peg or two," as Lupin said that, Sirius threw a dinner roll at his head.
At that moment, a beautiful redheaded girl with shocking green, almond-shaped eyes sat down diagonal from her. Hermione was looking right into Harry's eyes. Out of everything she had seen and experienced today, this by far was the strangest and hardest to take in.
Oh my, they really are exactly the same. She couldn’t believe it.
"What are you lot doing to this poor girl already?" she asked sternly.
"Nothing Evans, she was just teaching Black some manners," James said with love pouring from his eyes. "So is this the year you finally give in to your heart's deepest desire and go out with me?" he asked, wiggling his eyebrows.
"Potter, I wouldn't go out with you if you were the last man on earth," she said firmly.
Hermione couldn't help but notice a slightly playful tone in her voice. Hmm… They're not together yet. Although I think I do remember Harry saying it was during their seventh year they became a couple.
"You better be careful sitting with this lot. People might start thinking you're trouble," Lily said playfully to Hermione. "I'm Lily Evans, head girl. If you need anything, please don't hesitate to ask me," she said with kindness.
"Thank you so much, Lily. I'm Hermione Winters," Hermione reached across the table and shook her hand, still very much in shock.
"Well, you be nice to her! I'm sure she's scared enough already. Especially you, Black!" Lily scolded.
"Oh pipe down, Evans. She'll be fine with us," Sirius said rather protectively. Hermione couldn’t help the small smile that was pulling at the corners of her mouth.
"Well, it was a pleasure meeting you Hermione. I have to show the first years the way to the common room. I'll see you later?" she asked with a smile.
"Absolutely. It was so nice meeting you too," Hermione said, her mind still reeling from everything.
The four boys and Hermione made their way up to the Gryffindor common room after the feast. Hermione tried to be extra careful to linger behind a little and give the impression she did not know where she was going. She even let herself fall into the trick step which Neville so often forgot about.
"Oh shit! I'm sorry, Hermione! I forgot to warn you about that," Sirius said while helping her back up.
"That's quite alright. Thank you," she said, pretending to be shaken up.
They arrived at the portrait of the Fat Lady and Remus gave the password, "Gillyweed" and they made their way into the common room.
"Well this is it. Home sweet home," James said proudly.
Hermione looked around at the fluffy couch and armchairs in front of the grand fire place, the red and gold rugs on the floor, the tables students use for homework or games and the moving portraits on the walls. Reveling in the familiarity of the room, she pretended to be in awe of the common room she's known for the last six years. "Wow, it's beautiful," she said.
"Yeah, it's not so bad at all," Sirius said, his chest puffed out.
Hermione noticed he was looking straight at her while he said it and felt the blush spread across her face.
Desperately wanting a moment to herself, she needed to get to her dormitory. "Well boys, I am exhausted. Which way is my bed?" she asked while attempting to stifle a yawn.
"Right here, darling," Sirius said with his arms spread open wide.
"Not in your wildest dreams, Black," Hermione said, rolling her eyes.
The rest of the boys laughed while Remus answered, "Up the stairs to your right. Don't forget if you need anything, Lily should be in there with you."
"Thank you all so much for helping me out and showing me around today. I really appreciate it. It really has been a pleasure meeting you all. Goodnight, and I'll see you all in the morning?" she said asked with a smile.
"It was nothing, Hermione. We'll see you tomorrow," James said.
"Yeah, nothing at all. You sleep well," Remus said kindly.
"Goodnight, Hermione. Don't worry, you'll love it here," squeaked Peter.
"If you change your mind about coming to bed, I'm up the stairs to the left," Sirius said, leaving her speechless, but not in the good way. "Goodnight, Hermione. I know you'll be thinking about me," he added with a wink.
"Wow… you really are impossible. Good night boys," she said and made her way up the stairs.
Before she got too far she heard, "That is the most beautiful girl I have ever seen. Time to throw on the old Black charm."
"I don't know mate, she seems a little too smart for that if you ask me," James said.
"Yeah, Padfoot. She doesn't seem like the bimbos you usually go for. I don't think it'll be that easy with her," Remus said.
"Yeah, I think you're going to have your work cut out for you there," added Peter.
"Maybe I don't want her to be just another bimbo..." Sirius said thoughtfully.
Hermione then continued up the stairs to her room and found that she smiling at what she just heard.
Ugh. No. This cannot be happening...
Upon arriving in the dorm, she quickly changed into pajamas, and climbed into her bed. Before shutting the curtains, she noticed there was only one other bed in the room, besides her own. The trunk laying next to the empty bed had the initials "L. E." inscribed on it. Feeling incredibly relieved, yet slightly nervous, Hermione thought, Looks like Lily and I will be roommates.
Hermione then closed the curtains and curled up on her side, attempting to become comfortable. She tossed and turned for quite some time while thinking of her day, and how mind boggling it has been. Soon she found herself taken over by exhaustion and was fast asleep. She made it thought her first day.
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