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Crossing Delicate Boundaries by lindslo2012
Chapter 6 : These Cell Walls
 
Rating: MatureChapter Reviews: 7


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To Hermione, Draco Malfoy not only looked determined to go talk to his mother, but as though he might plan to do something rash. She certainly wouldn't doubt that he would do something, given the angry look on his face that she had seen on many occasions in school. He hated the Ministry right now and she knew it.

When Hermione gathered all the paperwork that they would need for this departure, she was watching him closely because he had started pacing the room. She took comfort in knowing if he tried anything, than his arrogant self would be straight back in Azkaban where he was just a mere three days ago.

"You're taking bloody forever, Granger."


"This is a big case Malfoy, an Azkaban prisoner is not to be taken lightly in an investigation. In fact I think I’m going to invite Harry along," Hermione said, wanting to take her best friend along for security in case something did happen.  Harry was one of the best at seeing through people, especially people like Malfoy. She hoped her boss would approve.

"Just wonderful, that'll be the cherry on top of the cake, having two people that I despise instead of one," Malfoy spat, rolling his eyes.

"I'll be right back, you stay here." Hermione told him strictly, ignoring his last comment. She tried not to stress but she had never foreseen herself having to go to Azkaban to investigate Narcissa Malfoy. She shivered when she thought briefly how it'd be with Bellatrix's face across the cell bars instead of Narcissa's. If it was in fact Bellatrix, Hermione may have not been able to do it. Bellatrix Lestrange visited Hermione's nightmares regularly and Hermione was glad she would never have to come face to face with her in real life again.


Hermione looked back to see Malfoy impatiently sitting near the desk again and continued to walk toward the Auror's Headquarters.The Auror Headquarters looked much like the Detective's with its dull white walls and flyers of Azkaban prisoners glued to them all over the place and no windows. Trainee of the Month portraits had Harry's face featured in half of them. Harry and Ron had offices next to each other and Harry's office was the second largest to the Head's. No matter how hard she worked she would never be seen as high up as her best-friend, the defeater of Voldemort, but Hermione was okay with that because her best-friend was still with her now instead of in the ground.

Harry was writing furiously with his eyes scrunched up in concentration when Hermione entered his office. He seemed startled when she entered- she supposed he was curious as to why she had left the safety of her own desk to come talk to him because it was hard to get Hermione out of her office during work hours.

"Harry, I have a favour to ask of you." Hermione said, as she plopped down in the office chair opposite of his.

"And what's that? I'm very occupied today, but I will try to help you because it must be quite important," he said with a chuckle.

"If you can't help don't bother with it but you might be interested in tagging along, it is quite important actually. Malfoy and I are going to Azkaban to investigate his mum's case. We are going to speak to Narcissa herself and get some answers and he seems very uneasy, so I'm not entirely comfortable going alone. I'd rather ask you than Ronald because I know he wouldn't take this seriously,." Hermione explained, putting her hands together and folding them on top of Harry's black marble desk.

Hermione observed various pictures of Harry and Ginny sat in picture frames around them and there where at least two pictures of the three of them from school too. As she observed the smile upon their faces in the pictures of them together, Hermione couldn't help but be a little jealous of Harry and Ginny's relationship, which was going almost perfectly now, unlike hers.




"I'll come. This is definitely something I don't want to miss!" Harry said excitedly with raised eyebrows, his sharp green eyes looked serious and he put down whatever he was currently writing.


"I didn't think you did. If you are interested, meet us in my office. We are leaving in ten." Hermione announced, relieved Harry was coming and leaving the office, as Harry started to pack a briefcase of stuff for his own note taking of the investigation.

Hermione returned to the office and reported to a sulking Malfoy that Harry was coming with them.

"Why Granger? Scared of me are you?"

"No Malfoy, I'm not scared of you. I just wanted him to come for more ideas of questions to ask her. You see, we are on her side about this. That is something you obviously aren't getting through that thick head of your's."

"Why would you be on an ex- Death Eater's side?" Malfoy wondered venomously, his grey eyes focused on her disbelievingly.

"Because some people we believe didn't actually have their heart in the act of doing Voldemort's bidding. Why do you think Harry fought for your case?" Hermione answered smartly, sitting back and just waiting on Harry to be ready to go now. 

"Because some people we believe didn't actually have their heart in the act of doing Voldemort's bidding. Why do you think Harry fought for your case?" Hermione answered smartly, sitting back and just waiting on Harry to be ready to go now.

"You don't know anything about me Granger. Maybe it was a mistake to get me out of there," Malfoy scowled.

"Well, we didn't think so. You aren't as bad as you think you are Malfoy!"

Malfoy then smirked and whispered sharply, "I can be your worst nightmare, mudblood, don't you forget that."

Hermione tried her best not to let the name bother her. She did, after all, have it carved into her arm, she didn't need to be reminded what they all thought of her.

"There won't be any of that name calling today,." Harry said, as he arrived into the office. He then put out his hand in front of Draco., "yYou won't have your wand when we go to Azkaban, Malfoy. Try anything and I will have you back in a cell quicker than you can castsay a spell!"

"Suit yourself Potter. Fancy seeing you again, not. Always acting like the big man!" Malfoy growled.

Harry ignored him for the most part. He motioned for them to follow him and they walked into a brick private room, full of floo fireplaces. "So what kind of questions are you planning to ask Narcissa?"

"I am basically going to ask her what her purpose was to follow Voldemort and why she all of a sudden decided to change sides like she claimed in her trial," Hermione answered, as the three of them gathered a handful of floo powder.

The three of them then jumped into the fireplace and chanted, "Azkaban!"

***

When they landed on Azkaban's ground, the three of them all had different reactions, Hermione noted. Malfoy shivered and his face was flooded of all colour. His grey eyes looked wildly around for other inmates or anything in particular to avoid- he didn't want to be seen here.


Hermione, of course, looked curiously at everything, having never been here before when they entered the side of the prison. Her fear showed in her brown eyes as she explored the claustrophobic walls and shivered. "This place is h-horribly cold."

"That'll be dementors they'd have left making it remained cold like this," Harry told her, as he took the lead. Hermione and Malfoy both were less confident in walking deeper into the huge building.

Finally after walking down long halls of dark, dripping cold walls they arrived in an office where three burly men sat together, obviously Aurors with huge badges on their pocket front, identical to Harry's but her's was the color of red.



"Ah, Potter! What have you brought us here?" A man by the name of Sampson asked, as he looked over Malfoy.



"Mr. Malfoy didn't last long, eh?" Another asked snidely, with a cold laugh.

Malfoy didn't say a word but clenched his fists when they mocked him. Luckily, Harry corrected their assumptions. "No, Malfoy is with Hermione as his mentor and is working in the Detective Department for his probation."

"We are here to investigate Narcissa Malfoy." Piped up Hermione, taking a step between the boys, having been hiding behind them a little.

"He most definently will not be going back there to his mother." Sampson declared, his huge arms folding now threateningly.

"Why?" Hermione asked as Harry silenced her with a hand movement.

"Hermione is Malfoy's mentor and therefore he needs to stay by her side, Sampson. I'll be there as well," Harry said, a bit irritably.

"The bloke just got let out three days ago, do you honestly think he won't try anything? You're just a trainee, Potter." The other man asked smartly.


"I won't do anything," Malfoy sneered between his teeth. He covered his left arm with his long sleeve better because one of the Aurors had started staring at his Dark Mark.

"Fine, if you say so. Go ahead but don't expect us not to keep an eye on you." Sampson said, as he flicked his wand toward a heavily armed door which opened and he nodded for one of his men to follow.

"Lady Malfoy's cell is A345." Sampson said, just before the door closed behind them.

Hermione and Harry walked ahead, as Malfoy dragged behind with the Auror on his heels. It was not entirely comfortable for either of them, but especially not for Malfoy. 

The walls around them seemed to sink in around them as if they were attempting to suffocate them and it made Hermione have to catch her breath. She glanced at Malfoy and wondered whether he would have came if it wasn't his mum that they were investigating. 

"She is down this hall of cells here. I will stand back to give you all your privacy," The man told them. He had a long black beard and blue eyes that reminded Hermione of Dumbledore, only younger.

Hermione, Harry, and Draco walked down a group of six cells. They were less armed than some of the ones they had passed and the three of them kept reading the numbers slowly as they walked.

Hermione gasped when she saw a message written in blood in one of the cells. Flies were buzzing everywhere and a man Hermione recognized as one of the Death Eaters from the war, lay in a corner sleeping. It read, "LONG LIVE VOLDEMORT. HE WILL RESCUE US FROM THIS HELL. HE IS OUR KING. HE WILL NEVER DIE."

They continued and found the cell at the end where Narcissa Malfoy resided in, which was the nasty colour of copper and had rusty bars. She was sitting in the corner, her black and white robes were whipped around her skinny, skeleton like knees, and her face was sunken in. She was not as beautiful as Hermione previously remembered. Narcissa Malfoy looked truly worn down.

Her eyes were aroused only when Malfoy appeared where she could see him. She slowly and weakly turned her head toward the three of them, as they sat in metal chairs that the Auror had provided.

"Son?" She asked, her dark eyes lighting up a little.

"Yes, it's me mother," Malfoy said, Hermione could hear him fighting for his voice to not crack from the emotions that she could see that overcame him in that moment. He couldn't lose it in front of two of his enemies, she knew that.

"How are you?" She whispered, holding onto an old chair to help her stand up and walking slowly toward them. A huge chain was wrapped around her ankle and it made horrible clanking sounds as she walked.

"I'm fine mum but I could be better," Malfoy said honestly. He almost lost the tears that started to gather in his eyes, Hermione noticed, and he then frantically blinked them away. 






 

Hermione looked away from Draco and stepped forward toward the cell where Narcissa was standing and holding her son's hand. Narcissa's eyes fell off of her son and to Hermione, and she glared.

"What do you want from me? Trying to ruin my life further?" She spat, letting go of Malfoy's hand and stepping back. "Why are you with them Draco?"

"Mum we are here to ask you a few questions. I am with Granger and Potter because I work with them. I am having to work for the Ministry because it's part of my probation."

"Oh," Narcissa said, shrugging. She seemed so weak you couldn't tell she made a movement.

"How's Father?" Malfoy asked suddenly. Hermione saw his eyes look away distantly and she knew he didn't really care to know. 






"He's erm... not very well Draco," Narcissa said as her eyes filled with tears. "He's gone mad. He's not himself any longer."

"I'm so sorry," Hermione said, speaking for the first time, but shut up when she received a glare from Malfoy.

Narcissa looked back to Hermione and then to Harry. "What do you want to ask me?"

"Well Mrs. Malfoy, we want to investigate you on the reasons why you joined Voldemort and why you decided to change sides at the last moment," Harry said to her, as she started nodding.

"Well I have wanted to tell my side of the truth so please, ask me any questions you have," She answered, pacing the small cell uncomfortably.

Five minutes passed and Hermione decided to start. "Mrs. Malfoy, why did you choose to join Voldemort in the first place?"

Narcissa sat on the concrete cell's floor and wrapped her hands around her knees. She started rocking back and forth and Harry and Hermione started to wonder whether she may be mad too.

"I joined Voldemort because I didn't want to disappoint my family." Narcissa said, looking at Draco as she said it. He stiffened up and looked uncomfortable, making Hermione wonder whether that was one of the reasons why he joined too.

"How would you disappoint your family by not joining him?" Hermione went on, her quill writing on its own on her parchment the questions and answers.

"My sister was Bellatrix Lestrange, who of course you know by experience was a very dangerous woman. Since my sister Andromeda left the family and went her own way, she got banned by the family and was threatened to be killed by Bella, I was too scared to follow in her footsteps because I never wanted to be disowned by my family and especially by my eldest sister, who was my role-model. I also married Lucius who, as you know, was one of his most loyal followers until he broke the prophecy. As most of us Death Eaters did, I kind of lost myself and started to only care about his well-being, the Dark Lord's." Narcissa told them still rocking back in forth as though she was going to hit herself like Dobby used to, when he said things he shouldn't have.

Hermione and Harry looked from Malfoy, who had a look on his face that could kill, to Narcissa who looked as though she could cry again.

"Why did you want Draco to join Voldemort?" Harry asked, making Malfoy look his way in a glare.

"I didn't, but if I told him not to then my loyalty to the Dark Lord and my husband would be questioned. Lucius is proud of Draco and wanted to show the Dark Lord what kind of power his family held still, after he had ruined the mission in the Department of Mysteries," Narcissa told the three of them. "I am sorry about Sirius by the way, Potter."

"It has been years but thank you very much. He was the last family member that I had," Harry said, frowning, but surprised that Narcissa even mentioned that.

"He was quite the joker back in school before he started to disappoint the family. Even though he was in Gryffindor I talked to him quite often, before I was told I couldn't around my fifth year. Bella shouldn't have killed him," Narcissa said shaking her head.

A silence filled all of them, and Hermione wondered whether Harry was thinking of Sirius. 

"Why did you change sides the last moment?" Hermione asked, as the inmates around them started to sneer things like ‘because she's a traitor like her husband and son’.

"Because I realized that I was not who I was pretending to be. I realized that I didn't want to die after all and I wanted more for my son. And most of all I realized I didn't want to be a mad woman like my sister," Narcissa whispered, her eyes filling with tears yet again.

"Thank you Mrs. Malfoy, that'll be all for today," Harry said, as Hermione looked at him questionably.

"She's had enough for now. We'll come back another day," He told Hermione.

Hermione and Harry then concluded the investigation, as Narcissa was growing increasingly uneasy by the minute. After they finished their notes and said their goodbyes to Narcissa they found the Auror who led them in, when they remembered Malfoy was supposed to be with them.

When Hermione turned around he was found by his mum's cell on his knees. Narcissa was holding his head with her dirty hands and saying things to him and he had his hands wrapped around her wrists, looking into his face.

All Hermione caught was ‘it's going to be okay. We will be back with you Draco, we won't leave you in this world alone. I'm so proud of you, son’.

After a good ten minutes Draco joined them again and they started to head back to the Ministry.

"Are you okay, Malfoy?" Harry asked as they entered the fireplace. Malfoy's face was sad and defeated.

"I'm fine Potter," He spat, annoyed, as the three of them disappeared in the green flames.

 

*** 
Later after they arrived back at the Ministry, Hermione and Malfoy got back into her office and both settled down as she was writing her report with Malfoy closely watching her.

"So are you going to try and get my mum out of Azkaban?" He wondered, trying his best to see what she was writing.

"Yes I think I will. I'll try my best," Hermione said seriously, meeting his grey eyes with her brown ones. He rested his eyes on her for a few minutes and Hermione blushed and looked away.

"You can head home now if you want to, we are basically done for the day," Hermione told him, as she closed the binder with Narcissa's case.

"Well thank you Granger. I guess," Malfoy said, standing up and grabbing the briefcase he brought to work that morning.

"My pleasure," Hermione said awkwardly. It didn't feel right talking to an enemy like that, but for some reason Hermione didn't hate Malfoy right now, she felt sympathy for him. And for the first time in her life as she watched him leave her office... she understood how Draco Malfoy felt.











A/N: So what did you think of the investigation? Do you believe everything Narcissa was saying? 
And it seems like Hermione and Draco are starting to have an understanding for one another but don't get too excited yet... they are far from realizing feelings for each other. 
I hope that you like my story so far and I am so greatful that you have even decided to read it! Please review if you have some time! I would love any advice you have or just would like to hear what you thought. Thank you! 
-Lindsey 





 


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