Title: Hermione’s Memory
Author: Keira Marcos
Beta: Ladyholder & Chris King
Series: Harry Potter & the Soulmate Bond
Fandom: Harry Potter
Word Count: 13,245
Rating: NC-17 (sex and language)
Warnings: Sexual content, off-screen child abuse, discussion of child abuse and violence against a child, bigotry, passing mention of rape, sexual harassment, and explicit language
Author’s Note: You know I hate Ron and Ginny Weasley, right? See Series page for further author notes, warnings, and ratings.
The little café Hermione had picked for lunch in Hogsmeade catered more to the residents of the town than the Hogwarts crowd. She’d figured, rightly, that Harry could use some space away from their fellow students. Classes the day before had been a little stressful and they’d both endured more attention than either garnered on a normal day. Fortunately, Ron and Ginny both had given them a lot of space. He relaxed by degrees as they browsed the menu, ordered Muggle sodas, and eventually salads.
“You birthday is Thursday,” Harry said. “I considered asking your mum if I could take out—to Muggle London for the evening but then I was worried that she’d want to spend this birthday with you. It’ll be your first since you were adopted. So I was thinking we could have lunch in London on the twenty-first. Next Saturday. We’d probably get stuck with an Auror escort of some kind.”
“That sounds… really nice. Do you think my mum will agree?”
“She trusts both of us,” Harry said. “We’ll have bodyguards. I won’t be upset if she says no but I think it would be nice to get out of Scotland for a while without there being some sort of horrible mess going on. Frankly, I’m not used to being so restrained. Hogwarts is rather like a prison.”
“I can see how it might seem confining,” Hermione agreed. “I guess I’m just used to it. I don’t mind the rules. A lot of the people we go to school with couldn’t be trusted with the freedoms of an adult.”
Harry nodded and fiddled with his fork as the server set their food into place in front of them. He cast a privacy charm as soon as the woman was gone with his blackwood wand and cleared his throat. “I’m rather at a loss as to what to get you for your birthday.”
She grinned at him. “You know I’ll like whatever you give me. I’m not materialistic, Harry.”
“I have a few ideas,” Harry huffed. “It’s just I don’t want you to be disappointed.” He waved a hand. “I’m asking for a bit of guidance, Mi.”
“Most everyone buys me books,” Hermione admitted.
“You’ve got plenty of people to buy you books,” Harry said.
“Just… give me something that means something to you. That’s what I want. Something meaningful—even if we are the only two people on Earth who will even understand it. And I promise I won’t be disappointed.”
He nodded. “Okay.”
– – – –
“Did you want to come in?” Hermione asked as they lingered in front of the McGonagall family quarters. “Mum is actually in Hogsmeade at our townhouse. She’s preparing a bedroom for me at home.”
“That’s nice,” Harry said and shoved his hands into his pockets. “As to coming in… better not. I mean, I know she wouldn’t get mad if she came in and found us snogging on her sofa but…”
“Is that what you’d think we’d be up to?” Hermione asked with a little laugh.
“It would certainly be on my mind,” Harry said. He trailed his fingers along the line of her jaw, rubbed her bottom lip with his thumb. “Can I kiss you?”
“You didn’t ask the first time you did it,” Hermione pointed out.
“Well, you’d just implied that we were going to have babies together,” Harry murmured. “Now I’m trying to be polite.”
“Very well, then, Lord Potter, you may kiss me,” she whispered and shivered a little when he moved in closer. “You’re always so warm.”
“Parselmagic,” Harry admitted. “I’ve been practicing it so long that it’s in my skin and bones. Flowing through me like a river in addition to the magic I produce from my core. I’m always going to run a little hot as a result.”
He brushed his mouth over hers once, then again when she slid her arms around his waist, under his coat. Her sweet tongue brushed against his lips as he kissed her again and he automatically opened to her exploration. Harry let his hands drop to her hips as they kissed. He wanted her—wanted her more than he’d ever wanted Janelle which was a relief. Maybe some part of him had been worried that bedding a Veela would make a normal witch pale in comparison.
“Really, you two! I’ve got a perfectly good sofa.”
Harry pulled his mouth from Hermione’s with a groan. “Right.” He kissed her forehead with a little bit of regret. “Good night.”
Hermione huffed. “Good night.”
Harry greeted his second favorite witch on Earth with a smile. “Aunt Min.” He bussed a kiss over her cheek. “Your daughter returned at a proper time—just as she was when I left with her. Except more kissed, of course.” He winked at Septima Vector who was with the Deputy Headmistress in the narrow bit of hall that lead into teacher’s quarters for the school.
Hermione was torn between being irritated and amused. She settled on a little pout and turned to her new mother with a look after Harry was gone. “Honestly, I was enjoying that.”
“I could tell,” Minerva said dryly. “I thought the two of you were going to set the castle on fire. The air was practically sub-tropical in this hall. I think I’m going to have to start hunting for a tutor for you.”
“Or it could be that Lord Potter makes her hot,” Vector said with a little laugh that had Hermione blushing.
“He’s terribly pretty,” Hermione confided. “Sometimes I can’t even stand to look at him—it’s like looking at a fallen star.”
– – – –
Harry pulled the carved wooden box from his trunk and opened it. He let his fingers stroke the dark wood of the violin. He’d played it once—after many lessons had been had as he hadn’t wanted to disrespect his mother’s instrument with amateur play. He’d been very disappointed when the magic of the instrument had remained elusive. It played well in his hands but it might as well have been Muggle for all the magic he was able to create with it.
The elf popped into place. “Evening, Master Harry. Did you enjoy your date?”
“I had a great time. She’s… just everything I want.” He focused on the violin. “Take this to Master Ormond in Italy. I want it restrung and polished.” He closed the box. “I’m going to give it to Hermione for her birthday so I need it returned by Tuesday.”
“She will love it,” Dobby said. “Emmie says Miss Hermione’s mean old-parents sold her violin when she wouldn’t give up magic. Theys be telling her that she didn’t deserve to make any more music because it was a gift from their God and she be evil because she was a witch.”
Harry huffed. “You want to give me an early Christmas present, Dobby?”
Dobby grinned. “I always be willing to give my Master Harry a present. What shall I do?”
“Transfigure yourself to look like the Muggle’s interpretation of the Devil and pop into the Grangers’ house. Tell them you’re looking forward to them joining you in hell. You can do it a couple times a month until you get bored with it.”
“Maybe we could all take turns,” Dobby said thoughtfully. “We elves not like Miss Hermione’s no-good, bad parents at all. Her parents be worse than Dementors.”
“You can dress up like a Dementor, too,” Harry said.
“This be more like gift to Dobby than a gift to Harry Potter,” Dobby said thoughtfully.
“It’s a gift for everyone,” Harry said seriously. “You go teach them how wrong they were to hurt my witch. You guys can put them in a Muggle mental institution for all I care.”
– – – –
Hermione’s birthday party ended up better attended than any she’d ever had at Hogwarts. The common room in Gryffindor had expanded itself without being prodded to accommodate the crowd, which included the Minister for Magic, a man named Remus Lupin that Hermione knew to be very important to Harry, the Weasley twins, and half the staff at Hogwarts. She’d received a lot of books—her favorite candy from Neville, a book on the history of the International OWLs and NEWTs from Seamus that she was embarrassed to admit she cooed over briefly.
She had two packages from Lord Black. She opened the small one first—not wanting to appear greedy. Magic flowed out of the box as soon as she opened it. The chain looked delicate but she knew the moment she touched it that it was mithril. She lifted the pendent out of the box with wide eyes. It was a little a little cat—a startlingly accurate representation of Crookshanks, who had spent most of the day following her around. Even now he was sprawled on the sofa between her and her mother.
She inclined her head as she studied it. “Oh, this is a multi-destination portkey.”
Lord Black laughed and held out his hand to Remus Lupin who pulled out a galleon and handed it to him. “I told Mooney you’d figure it out yourself. I’ve set two destinations for you—there is a note in the box. Your mum will have to set the one for your home.”
Hermione looped it over her head without hesitation and smiled. “Thank you very much.”
“You didn’t ask where he set the two destinations to,” Lupin said.
“I trust him,” Hermione said simply. She slipped the box into her pocket to keep the instructions for the portkey safe and opened the second box without acknowledging the shocked looks she’d earned from many in the room. She pulled out the slim book with a small sound of absolute delight she couldn’t keep to herself. “Oh, oh, this… oh.”
“What is it?” Lavender asked leaning forward. “The answers to every question ever asked?”
Hermione laughed. “It’s a magical catalog for my library trunk.” She looked to Harry’s dad—eyes shining. “Can you help me install it later?”
“I’d be honored,” Sirius said leaning against the fireplace mantel.
Emmie popped into place in front of her, bouncing a little. “It be my turn, finally!”
Hermione laughed and gathered the elf up in a hug. “Emmie, coming to my party is all the gift I need from you.”
Emmie settled in her lap with a laugh and brandished a box. “Open my present, Miss Hermione.”
Hermione pulled the ribbon loose from the box and lifted a lid to reveal a sparkling bracelet full of platinum charms. “Wow.”
“I make it,” Emmie said proudly. She started pointing out charms. “There’s me, yous violin, your national scholar award, a little crown for when you played for the Queen on her birthday, that scroll be your Hogwarts letter, yous wand, a copy of Hogwarts, a history… that be a troll.”
Hermione burst out laughing. “It has a club.” She poked the troll and it gave a tiny roar and brandished its club. “Oh, the Whomping Willow.” She prodded the little tree and the whole bracelet shook.
“Yes,” Emmie sighed. “You be so trying, Miss Hermione. That be Padfoot.” She pointed at the dog. “He keeps mean tree in line.” The elf looked towards Lord Black who burst out laughing. “That be Rowena.” She pointed at the snake then a dragon. “That be Master Harry in his dragon form. This be your new mum in her kitty form.” She paused and sent McGonagall a sly look before continuing. “This last kitty be mean Crookshanks.”
“This is perfect, Emmie.” She hugged her as the elf put the bracelet on her wrist. “Wait, what is that sword?”
Emmie pursed her lips. “That be Sword of the Earl of Gryffindor.”
“Oh,” Hermione whispered and shared a look with Harry. She kissed Emmie’s cheek. “Thank you so much.”
Emmie huffed. “Do Emmie favor and not play with any more trolls.” She hugged Hermione and popped away.
Star popped into place in front of her. “Happy Birthday, Miss Hermione.”
“Thank you, Star,” Hermione said with a smile. “Thank you for coming to see me.”
“I brings you present from your mum,” Star said proudly. “And one from the rest of the Potter elves, too.” She pulled out a trunk, resized it, and lowered it the floor in front of her Hermione. The lid flipped open of its own accord. “This is the fall, winter, and spring collection from the Paris Tailor Shoppe. A whole new wardrobe. Yous mum pick out everything. I come back later and tailor everything to fit you perfect.”
Hermione threw her arms around Minerva who had been sitting with her throughout the gift giving. “Oh, my god, Mum!”
Minerva laughed and patted her gently. “Anything you don’t like we can exchange.” She kissed Hermione’s cheek. “Star, show her the gown I picked out for the Ministry Ball.”
“Ball gown?” Hermione asked as boxes started to shift in the trunk.
“The Annual Yule Ball for the Ministry. I assumed you’d be going this year,” Minerva eyed Harry.
“Hey, I was going to ask,” Harry protested. “She’s the foundation of my defensive plan for all future public events I’m forced to attend.”
“Oh wait,” Hermione said and snatched the box. “I don’t want him to see it until I’m in it.” She took a private peek and closed the lid. “I can try it on later tonight.”
Star nodded and presented a small box to her. “This be a thank you present. When you appeared in Witch Weekly with Rowena in your hair—witches from all over Paris started showing up at the Shoppe asking for charmed snake for their hair. We’s not be having anything like that so we had to make it. We sell many thousands worldwide. Made enough money to offer free Wolfsbane through the Lily Potter Foundation for five years so far.”
Hermione took the box wide-eyed and opened it. Inside was a near replica of Rowena in her small size made of shining mithril. “Oh.”
“We sell gold and platinum versions in Shoppe. We get mithril from goblins for yours. We add our magic to it—location charm. We left transfiguration open as well—so you can make it do whatever you want. The ones we sell in Shoppe are closed. So witches have to buy multiple ones for different looks. We has different animals too—owls and cats very popular.”
Hermione grinned at her as she pulled out the snake and took note of the sparkling emerald eyes. “That is a brilliant idea, Star. This is beautiful. Thank you very much. Please thank the others as well.”
Star paused. “As long as Miss Hermione be wearing the snake—Potter elves always know where you are. We can come to you if you call.” She pulled out what was obviously a birthday card. “We all sign it—so you can know our names. Yous need help, you call and we come. It not matter where you are. There is no place I cannot go.” She paused and looked very serious. “One way or another.”
Hermione looked towards Harry who just smiled. She nodded and accepted the card. “Thank you, Star. I look forward to meeting everyone and finding out what each of you do for the House of Potter.”
Star gave her a careful curtsey and popped away.
“Now I think it’s my turn,” Harry said dryly.
“Oh, but…” She touched the bracelet.
“No, I had nothing to do with either of those gifts. They have their own money, Hermione. I have no say in how they spend it.”
“You pay your elves?” Dean Thomas asked, clearly shocked.
“No, they refused a wage,” Harry said as he picked up the wrapped package he’d brought with him to the party. “They have a trust fund that they share. It’s refilled every year—normally they donate most if not all of it to some charity or another at the end of the year. They buy their own clothes and supplies for their hobbies out of it. That’s actually how the Shoppe got started—they kept making me clothes. Lots of clothes. Then they started making clothes for Potter Redoubt and when they got bored with that—they asked me for money to buy a store front.”
He knelt in front of her and put the box in her lap. “Now, I asked you what you wanted for your birthday. I think I was pretty clear that you could’ve asked for anything and gotten it. You asked for something meaningful. Well, I’ll be frank—money means very little to me. It’s only important because it allows me to honor the legacy of my parents. I’m telling you this because what is sitting in your lap is worth a great deal of money. Roughly, two million galleons.”
“Harry.” She took a deep breath, the color draining from her face.
“I know you’re not materialistic. I know you don’t care about my money or the title or the fame or any of it. I’m telling you this because I don’t want you to refuse it based on how much you know it to be worth. I told you the insured value so you wouldn’t have to guess and stress over it. It isn’t about the money because what is in this box is absolutely priceless to me. It also just happens to be the most meaningful gift I can give you. In fact, I would say that no object I give you in the future will ever mean more to me.”
She carefully tore off the bright red paper, revealing a lovely box made of vine wood. She touched it and exhaled slowly. “Oh, Harry.”
“Go ahead, Mi, before these people expire from the suspense.”
She opened it, stared at the violin for a few seconds before she burst into tears. She set it aside and slid right off the sofa and into his arms.
Lavender Brown leaned forward over the couch and peeked into the box even as her Head of House picked up it up with shaking hands. “It’s a violin.” She told everyone, then her eyes widened in shock. “Oh, Merlin, you guys he gave her Lily Potter’s Stradivarius.”
Harry stood, picking her up as he went. “Give us a few minutes.” The crowd parted quickly and he took her up the short flight of stairs to his private quarters.
Minerva watched them go, shocked and turned to Sirius Black. “Did you know about this?”
Sirius shook his head. “No, he’s his own man and Lily’s violin is his personal property.” He glanced down at the instrument. “He’s only ever played it once. The magic of the instrument isn’t compatible with his.”
“Hermione’s wand is vine,” Minerva said as she stared at the instrument and cleared her throat. “Can you call Emmie, Sirius?”
Before he could the elf in question appeared in front of Minerva. “Aunt Kitty need Emmie?”
Minerva nodded. “You said that Hermione performed for the Queen. You meant the Queen of England, correct?”
“Miss Hermione be kind of… famous in the Muggle world. She be music prodigy. She played for Queen the summer before her tenth birthday. She play all over the world when she was little for the leaders of many countries and in symphonies—even before I started watching over her. Her Muggle parents make her choose—between magic and her music after her second year. They sold her violin when she chose magic to punish her. I have memory of Miss Hermione playing for the Queen if Aunt Kitty want to see later.”
“I do and thank you very much for offering,” Minerva said quietly. “Perhaps you could give it to me in a dream? Like if I was there?”
“Emmie be doing that,” the elf promised and popped away.
Hermione and Harry returned at the that moment. She looked composed. “I’m sorry for that. It was… completely unexpected.”
“It’s alright, dear,” Sirius said. “Though the next time he makes you cry like that I’m going to kick his arse. But, to be honest, it’s been more than a year since I could take him in a duel.”
Hermione laughed and sat down with her mother. She carefully removed the bow from the box and prepared it before picking up the violin and turning to Harry. “A preference?”
“None, play your favorite.”
Hermione gave herself a little space by moving towards the fireplace, tucked the instrument under her chin, closed her eyes, and began. Magic visibly flowed from the surface of the wood as she played. The sound swelled as tears slipped down her cheeks. When she finished, she cleared her throat. “Wow, that was amazing.”
“It was,” Harry agreed.
She began again, playing with the open notes of Loch Lomond with a small smile in her mother’s direction.
– – – –
“Good birthday?” Harry asked.
Hermione glanced at him wide eyed. “Yes, quite the best I’ve ever had. I can’t imagine you’ll ever top that.”
“Well, my daddy always did tell me to go big or go home,” Harry said with a laugh. “I asked your mum about London on Saturday. I had to agree to an Auror escort. Dad promised they’d be discreet and keep their distance.”
She smiled and snuggled up against him on the sofa. “It hurt.”
“What?” Harry asked concerned.
“When my parents made me choose,” Hermione whispered. “It was like they were ripping me into two pieces—one half they could tolerate for the sake of having a well-known child and the other half that they could never accept. A part of them must have always thought my musical talent was unnatural. I have perfect recall, I’ve never needed sheet music but I only ever have to refer to it once if I’m shown a piece.”
“That’s actually pretty common among magical musicians,” Harry admitted. “Music is magic in its own right. Playing a magical instrument can be as exhausting as a full on duel if you don’t moderate the flow of your magic into the instrument.”
“I noticed,” Hermione said. “Mum slipped me a pepper-up potion before we cut the cake.”
He wrapped an arm around her shoulders and pulled her closer. “Sorry I made you cry.”
She laughed weakly. “Well, any girl that has two million galleons sitting in her lap who doesn’t cry is terribly jaded and spoiled.”
“Rowena is jealous of your new hair accessory,” Harry whispered. “She’s been muttering about it all evening.” The snake in question hissed from her place in his collar but didn’t even poke her head out. “See, she’s all pouty.”
“The elves did a great job with it. Lavender was talking about ordering one with an owl clasp. Star left a catalog with my new wardrobe.”
“I bet she did,” Harry said with a laugh. “She’s serious about the business. They do more to support the Foundation than all of my British holdings combined. The last fashion show they put on was so well-attended that we had to do it over three days to accommodate everyone who wanted to see the summer and fall collections. Of course, now that Aunt Min has opened that particular floodgate, you can expect clothes to suddenly appear in your trunk. I imagine Star is already trying to figure out how to get pictures of you in Witch Weekly regularly in their clothes.”
“The collection is gorgeous and my gown is really lovely,” Hermione murmured. “It’s red with black trim.”
“I know,” Harry said dryly. “I already have new dress robes in my closet with a dark red waist coat. I figured it was to match your dress. I think both outfits were designed to match Rowena and Godric.”
Hermione laughed and nodded her agreement. “I… can’t dance.”
“What?” Harry asked, shocked.
“I can’t dance. I mean—I can shuffle along like an idiot like I did at the Yule Ball. Viktor did a pretty good job of making sure I didn’t make a fool of him but I don’t know the dances that’ll be… proper for a Ministry function.”
“Most of it is standard stuff—the wizarding waltz is a little more extravagant if you can imagine,” Harry explained. “I can teach you. I had dance lessons for years. Also, there is this charmed dance floor that parents can buy to teach their children. It guides you through the different dances with magic. I’ll have Dad buy one and we can find an unused classroom for it. It would probably be handy to have around.”
She shifted in his arms, threw one leg over his thighs and settled in his lap with a little smirk. “Hi.”
“Hi,” Harry murmured as he let his hands settle on her waist. “You don’t owe me anything.”
“You owe me a birthday kiss,” she told him in her best no nonsense tone.
“Seventeen and all grown up,” he said quietly as he pulled her close so that the soft heat of her jean covered sex was against him. He was half-hard just having her in his lap. She settled her weight on him and gasped a little. “Not a surprise, I hope.”
She laughed breathlessly as his hands drifted over her back, sliding easily up the t-shirt she’d been wearing under her jumper. She’d abandoned the pretty green jumper shortly after entering his quarters. “Harry.”
“Too much?” He asked, his hands stilling.
“No, not at all,” Hermione whispered as she brushed her mouth over his. Then again as he shifted under her. “After all, I took off my jumper so it wouldn’t be in your way.”
“This tiny t-shirt you’re wearing is ridiculously thin,” Harry said as he pressed little kisses along her jaw and down her neck. “And at least two sizes too small. You might as well not even be wearing it at all.”
She grabbed the hem of it and pulled it over her head without another word. She tossed it toward her jumper and met his shocked gaze. “There.”
“Merlin,” he muttered as she shifted back so he could get a good look at her. He stroked his fingers over her rib cage, his knuckles brushing up against the underside of her breasts. “Can I touch?”
“Yeah,” she answered breathlessly. “Most blokes would take permission for granted if I was sitting half naked in their lap.”
He rubbed one thumb over her tight little nipple and hummed under his breath as he considered her words. “That’s not the kind of man my father raised. Access to all of your lovely pink parts is going to require explicit permission.”
She laughed, soft and shocked as he cupped one breast while the other slid up her back to bring her close. She fell into the kiss without hesitation.
– – – –
Sirius raised an eyebrow at the portrait of Niall Gryffindor. “What do you mean I can’t come in?”
“His Lordship is giving his Lady another birthday present,” Niall said imperiously. “Go away, Black.”
Sirius huffed. “Seriously, I have to return to the Ministry—surely this gift can wait.”
Niall just smirked at him. “A Gryffindor doesn’t rush a lady’s pleasure, Black. Go do your job and let the boy get about his.”
Remus Lupin snorted. “Come on Padfoot. You know there is no statute of limitations on being a cockblock. You could be a grandpa before you’re forgiven.”
Sirius nodded and they went back down the stairs only to see Minerva heading towards them. “Minerva!” He smiled grandly. “I wanted to chat with you and Albus about upgrading the wards at Hogwarts. I only have about twenty minutes before I have to head back to London. Can we do it now?”
“The Ministry doesn’t have…”
“Oh, no, not as Minister—this is Foundation business. Remus is the Director of the Lily Potter Foundation and so this is a great time to discuss it.” He tucked her arm in his and prodded her towards the exit of the tower. “Have I told you the number one rule in our family?”
Minerva huffed. “I have charms on her, you know, I do know what they are close to doing.”
“Right, so the rule—unless someone is dead or literally on fire—there is no excuse for being a cockblock. And there is no statute of limitations on violating the first rule.”
Minerva barely refrained from laughing as Sirius led her out of the portrait. “Honestly…”
“You trust them both, right?”
“Yes,” Minerva said with a huff. “But…” She pulled him into an empty classroom and shut the door after Lupin joined them. “Her self-esteem is in the dungeon. She let a boy she barely knew seduce her over the summer to get back at her parents and honestly, probably, because he made her feel attractive when she’d never once believed that any boy would want her physically.”
“And you think Harry isn’t aware of this?” Sirius asked. “Minerva, there is very little about Hermione that he doesn’t know. Her self-esteem issues are not a secret to him and I trust him not to take advantage of her.”
“I’m afraid she’ll hurt him,” Minerva snapped. “I adore the girl, really, but I don’t think she has the first clue what love is, much less romantic love. I could have her parents drawn and quartered because of it.”
“He took private tuition with a mind healer,” Sirius said quietly. “And has ever since he was told how her parents abused her. He understands her self-esteem issues, her disconnect with emotional intimacy, and most importantly, why she buries herself in her intellect. Harry, himself, spent two years taking sessions from a mind healer to recover from what was done to him by the Dursleys. At nine, he chose to have his memories from before he was rescued suppressed. He knows he was nearly beaten to death and starved but he no longer actively remembers it.”
“It’s okay to be worried,” Sirius said. “It’s not okay to give them the freedom to explore their attraction to one another with a courting period then turn around and interrupt them whenever you get nervous about their physical relationship. You know that. If you want to put limits on them—do so. Harry will respect whatever those limits and conditions are without argument but don’t be… subversive about it. They’ll both catch on to it because they aren’t stupid and they’ll resent you.”
“Yes, fine,” Minerva huffed. “I trust them. I’ll just be quiet and worry.”
“We can worry together,” Sirius said with a sad smile. “Though I am serious about the wards for the school. Harry outlined what he wanted done to better protect the school from intrusion and dark objects being brought onto the property.”
– – – –
“Merlin, you’ve got an exceptional arse,” Harry muttered as he ran his hands down the back of her jeans, cupping her over a silky pair of knickers as he lifted her upward. He nuzzled against one nipple. “You sure about this?”
“Yeah, suck me,” Hermione begged and shivered as his tongue flicked over her rigid nipple. “Oh.” She writhed in his lap. She clenched her fingers in his hair and shivered against the heat of his body and mouth. “Fuck.”
He released her nipple with a laugh. “Absolutely lovely thought but not on the menu this evening, I’m afraid.”
“Not even if I begged for it?”
“Not even then,” Harry assured. He flicked his tongue over her neglected nipple and sucked it into his mouth—licking and sucking until she was shivering. He pulled away. “Do you want to come, love?”
Hermione blushed and bit down on her lip. “I…”
The immediate stiffness in her body was enough to cool down Harry’s own desires. He carefully set her down on his thighs and pulled his hands from her jeans. Figuring that bombarding with her questions wasn’t the right path, he waited while she collected herself enough to answer his question. The view was great so he was in no hurry. Her pert breasts were hard tipped and wet from his mouth, her smooth flat tummy lead down to the jeans she’d unbuttoned. He could see a hint of white knickers.
“I’ve never come with another person,” Hermione finally blurted out. “The boy from over the summer—he tried and I faked it so he’d stop.”
Harry nodded. “Okay, what did he try and if you can explain why you didn’t like it, that’d be great.”
“He refused to do oral sex—he said it was gross,” Hermione murmured. “He put his hand in my knickers but his fingers were dry and it was uncomfortable—almost painful.” She blushed furiously and rested against his chest. “And when he put his fingers inside me it was like he was trying to mine for gold or something.”
“Poor girl,” Harry murmured and pressed a kiss against her temple. “How about during intercourse? Was that just as… awkward?”
“The first two times hurt and the third was pleasant enough but I didn’t have an orgasm.” She shivered as he ran one hand up her back. “I can’t believe I’m talking to you about this.”
“We have magic moving between us,” Harry said. “Bonding magic is unique and powerful. You can tell me anything, Mi.”
“I think about you touching me like that,” Hermione confessed. “I just… I’m afraid it’ll be bad and I’m not sure I could fake it with you.”
“We’ll find it pretty difficult to lie to each other as our bond settles,” Harry admitted. “It’s okay to not like something, you know, whether it’s a sex thing or my taste in music or the fact that I’ll probably want to play Quidditch professionally before of getting a respectable, serious job.”
She huffed. “You can play professional Quidditch if you bloody well want to and I’ll kick anyone’s arse who disagrees.”
“There’s my girl,” Harry murmured.
“I think I ruined the mood,” Hermione said rather sadly.
“The great thing about being sixteen and seventeen respectively is that getting the mood back is going to be super easy,” Harry said with a little grin. He turned them slightly, tipped her onto the couch and climbed on top of her as she laughed.
“Take off your jumper so we’re equal,” Hermione commanded.
“Whatever you want,” Harry murmured. He shifted to his knees and pulled off his jumper and undershirt with it. Rowena and Godric both disillusioned themselves and slithered off of him to head towards the heat box he kept for them. He tossed the clothes on the floor by the sofa and let her draw him back down to top of her settling between her legs with a little groan. “You didn’t answer my question.”
“Yeah,” Hermione whispered, her eyes dark. “I want you to make me come.”
He kissed her soft and easy. “With my hand or with my mouth?”
She shuddered and arched under him as her nipples rubbed against his chest. “I…”
He pressed down with his hips and rutted his hard cock against her. “I’d suggest like this but I don’t know if you’re wet enough for frottage.” He slid down slightly and sucked one nipple into his mouth. He worried the slightly softened flesh until it was hard in his mouth and she was squirming under him. “Tell me how you want to come, Mi. Own your pleasure.”
“Your hand,” she gasped. “Touch my pussy, Harry.”
“Tell me if you don’t like it,” he reminded gently as he slid one hand between them and into her jeans. “I won’t be hurt or offended.”
“Okay, I promise.”
Harry cupped her silk covered cunt. Her knickers were soaking wet, which was a relief. He slid over so he could lie on his side beside her. She spread her legs, inadvertently pressing her thigh against his erection.
Harry lowered his head and caught one pretty nipple in his mouth as he slid his fingers into her knickers. She shivered as his big fingers slid confidently between the soft, bare lips of her sex. He groaned and clenched his teeth on her nipple just briefly.
“You naughty witch,” he murmured. “If I’d known your sweet little pussy was shaved—the only option you’d have gotten is my mouth.”
“You don’t think that’s gross?” Hermione asked.
“It’s practically my favorite thing to do,” Harry promised and swirled his tongue around her nipple before shifting her enough that he could lick and suck on her other breast. ”Madefacio.”
“Oh my god what…” She trailed off with a shudder as he trailed his lubed fingers tips over her clit.
“Just a lubrication charm, love,” Harry murmured. “My wandless magic is almost exclusively parselmagic.” He rubbed her hard little clit in a tight circle watching her shiver and writhe through the simple pleasure of it. “Is this how you do yourself?”
“Yes,” Hermione admitted in a whisper. “Just like that.”
“Good?” Harry asked.
“Very,” Hermione admitted with obvious relief.
“You know there’s nothing wrong with you,” Harry murmured as he watched her. “It’s about experience—I doubt he had much more than you no matter what he said. It wasn’t all roses and orgasms with me and Janelle either. But we learned a lot from each other.”
“Okay,” she lifted her hips as he continued to stroke her. “Oh, Harry… I’m sending that Veela girl flowers.”
“You might want to save that for the first time you let me eat you out,” Harry said with an amused laugh.
“You really want to do that?” Hermione asked.
“Hmmm, since I set eyes on you during the Sorting,” Harry admitted. He slid his fingers fully between her labia, and dipped one finger into her. “This okay?”
“Merlin, yes, do whatever you want,” Hermione said as she arched into his hand. “Make me come, Harry.”
He slid one finger deep into her—fucked her with it repeatedly while he returned his attention to her tits. They served a ready distraction because he knew if he didn’t distraction himself he’d given into the temptation to get his head between her legs would be too much. He added a second finger to give her a little stretch and she moaned and rolled her hips up against his hand.
Harry exhaled sharply and pressed his cock against her thigh as she shivered and lifted her hips helplessly against his hand. “That’s it, love, don’t hold back.” He pressed the heel of his hand against her clit as pushed his fingers in deep and ground against the roll of her hips. “You have to be quiet in your bed in your dorm, don’t you? Hidden behind a thin curtain while you rub your pretty little clit.”
“Harry,” she gasped weakly as if she trying to admonish him but the pleasure was overwhelming.
“The next time you masturbate you’re going to think about me,” Harry promised lowly against her throat as she curled into him with a whimper. “You’re going to slide your fingers into your cunt and wonder how thick my cock is.” He pushed another finger into her, murmuring the lubrication charm again even as she cried out in shock and pleasure. “Just about like that—I’m longer than my fingers. One day I’m going to be so deep in you won’t remember what it was like be empty.”
She shuddered hard and came—clenching down on his fingers in a hot rush of wetness. Harry reluctantly pulled his fingers from her and let them slide upwards between her lips and over her throbbing clit. She shuddered and groaned at the small contact. He glanced up and found her watching him with dark eyes.
“Happy birthday to me,” she whispered breathlessly, her cheeks flushing becomingly as he laughed. She bit down on her lip. “Did you want me to…” She let her hand drop to his belt.
He caught her hand and placed it on his sternum as he took a deep breath. “Probably not a good idea.”
“You don’t want me to touch you?” Hurt flashed in her eyes and she bit down on her bottom lip.
“Of course, I want you to touch me,” he said. “It’s just I’m trying to give us some pretty firm boundaries until… well, until I’m confident that we’re on the same page emotionally.”
“And that boundary starts with your prick?” She asked amusement replacing the hurt. “Seriously?” She huffed and slid her hand from his and carefully unbuckled his belt. “How about we set a boundary together?”
“It’s rather arrogant of you to make such a decision without my input,” she told him firmly as she unbuttoned and unzipped his slacks. “How about no vaginal intercourse until you’re ready to give me a promise ring and I’m ready to accept it?”
He exhaled sharply as her fingers drifted over his cock—still covered by the slightly damp cotton of his pants. “That puts a lot of sex options on the table, you know.”
“Probably more than I’ve considered,” she acknowledged. “But we can work through that together. Can I touch you?”
He exhaled sharply and nodded. “Yeah.”
“Cast that lubrication charm on my hand,” she demanded.
He did so with a hesitant hiss and trembled slightly as she slipped her hand into his boxers. Hermione wrapped her hand around his prick and stroked him a few times before she shifted slightly, worked him out of his pants completely.
“Mi.” He forced himself to stay still while she stroked him eagerly but inexpertly. “It’s not going to take much,” he admitted with a little groan.
He pulled her close, cupped one breast and worried the nipple with his thumb as she worked him.
“I read a whole chapter on fellatio in the Magical Kama Sutra,” Hermione whispered against his jaw. “There’s is even a charm so a witch can relax her gag reflex. We only practiced it a few times but all of us learned to do it. I’ve been thinking of you when I rub my clit since I started masturbating—the boy in my dreams was ten times for more fascinating than any boy I knew personally. I fantasize about coming in here, taking off all of my clothes and getting into bed with you. You always give in and let me have my wicked, wicked way with you. Sometimes I climb on top of you and ride your cock until I come like a river. Others… I suck you off. Let you fuck my mouth.”
“Fuck,” Harry ground out as he came all over her fingers. He shuddered as she released him. “I deserved that… after the way I talked to you.”
She laughed. “Maybe a little.”
He cast a few cleaning charms on them both and tucked himself away with a sharp exhale. Staring at the ceiling, he rubbed his mouth with his hand then, caught the scent of her on his fingers, and barely resisted licking them in front of her.
“You okay?” She asked, letting one hand rest on the muscles of his stomach.
“It’s…” He trailed off and looked at her. “You mean so much to me. I don’t want to mess this up.”
“This.” She waved her hand between them. “This is a team effort, Harry. You’re not on your own with it anymore. And I want this so much. I want us to work. I want to fall in love and get married and have babies with you.”
“Good plan,” Harry said agreed. “You should do all of our planning.”
– – – –
Hermione finished wrapping her hair and gathered up the rest of her toiletries just as Ginny Weasley came in. She zipped her bag, resolved to ignore the younger girl but that proved impossible because Ginny dropped her own kit on the counter next to Hermione’s sink and huffed at her dramatically.
“I don’t believe it, you know.”
“I don’t care,” Hermione said. She turned to look at Ginny completely ignoring their gathering audience. “But here’s what I do want you to believe, Ginerva. Harry Potter is mine. But you know what? Even if I wasn’t here—he wouldn’t be yours. He thinks you’re a child. A vicious, spiteful little girl. You have a decent amount of magical power but you’re intellectually lazy and dumb girls don’t turn him on.”
Hermione’s gaze narrowed. “Emmie.” The elf appeared at her side, dressed in the standard Potter uniform. “Tell this little bitch how long you’ve been with me and why.”
“Master Harry Potter send me to keep Miss Hermione safe when he was eight years old. I keeps bad things away from her except for Mean Girl Wheezy who be big liar and I not be able to tell Miss Hermione.” Emmie leaned into Hermione’s leg as she spoke and gave Ginny a venomous look. “Keep her safe from Ugly Boy Wheezy, too. Stop love potions. Keep him locked out of Miss Hermione’s room at crooked house. It be my job to protect the future Lady Potter from all threats—magical and Muggle, physical and emotional as much as I can.” She pointed a glowing finger at Ginny who jerked back in shock. “Now I don’t have to hide, Mean Girl Wheezy, now you mess with my Miss Hermione and I make you pay for it. No one not ever know how I do it but you be suffering if you not keep away from Master Harry Potter’s Lady. You suffer very much.”
“Right.” Ginny rolled her eyes in false bravado.
“I kill troll for Master Harry Potter’s Lady,” Emmie said matter of fact. “Crushed his skull with his own club.”
Ginny picked up her bag and hurried back out of the bathroom, which prompted Emmie to do a bit of victory dance. After a few seconds, she composed herself and smoothed down her dress. She turned to Hermione. “That be better than when give I yous cousin Brenda acne the night before her first date.”
Hermione bit down on her lip to keep from laughing. “You’re the best house elf ever.”
Emmie grinned at her slyly.
“Emmie,” Fay began. “Can you ward our dorm so Ginny can’t enter? I really don’t trust her.”
“I be doing it, Miss Fay,” Emmie promised and popped away.
“Do you think she’d attack me?” Hermione asked.
“Not directly but… you should’ve seen her face while you were opening your birthday gifts. I don’t know what infuriated her more—the wardrobe your mum got you or the fact that Harry gave you his mum’s violin. He might as well have married you right there, Hermione. That’s how big that was. I mean, I know it means more to you for what it is and how much it obviously means to him but the man put two million galleons in your lap. I wouldn’t put it past her to take it or attempt to destroy it.”
Hermione gathered up her things and darted out of the bathroom without a word. She rushed to her room, threw open her trunk and pulled out the violin which she inspected thoroughly before relaxing. She closed her eyes as she knelt there and considered her options. “Star?”
The Head Potter elf appeared immediately. “Yes, my Lady?”
“A couple of things,” Hermione began as her dorm mates joined her. “Can you… I need to make sure nothing happens to…” Her gaze dropped down to it. “I don’t even know its name.”
“It is the Lily 1732,” Star said. “Master James gave it to his wife as a bridal gift. He searched for many months once he found out a violin had been created and named Lily. She used to play it to put Master Harry to sleep—Lord James would rock him in the chair and Lady Lily would play.” Star knelt with her on the floor. “Master Harry not remember that though—he sacrifice all of his memories of his parents save the one that the Dementors give him so he could forget the bad Muggles.”
“Oh, Star,” Hermione whispered. “That’s heartbreaking.”
“He better for it,” Star said. “No longer… have the bad dreams. Lord James and Lady Lily would never want him to suffer the way he did with those bad memories even if he forget them, too.”
Hermione nodded. “How can we protect the Lily?” She stroked the box it was in with trembling fingers. “I’d never forgive myself if it came to harm in my care.”
“Master Harry already cast very strong parselmagic charms on it,” Star said as she stared at it. “No one but you, him, and Master Ormond can even take it out of the case, Miss Hermione. I’ve never seen a stronger unbreakable charm and if it is stolen it will be returned to the Potter vault in Paris. That be goblin magic. All of the entailed heirlooms from the Potter estate are charmed to return to the vault if they fall into inappropriate hands. It is very safe.” She tilted her head as she studied the box. “There even be charms to keep it safe from the cold and the very hot. And there is an anti-fire ward.”
“Okay, okay.” Hermione nodded. “That’s very good.”
“You have time now for your fitting?” Star asked.
“How long will it take?” Hermione asked.
“I need to take your measurements and I be wanting to see you in the ball gown to make sure. The other clothes will be charmed to fit and grow with you on a limited basis. You not quite done,” Star confided. “You get more bust and maybe a bit taller before you be done. You have to take off your robe. Be naked for this part.”
Hermione gamely removed her robe as she stood and let the elf take measurements as her roommates settled in around them for what was probably going to turn into a fashion show. “Now, about Torrie,” Hermione said seriously. “You’re not really letting him go unsupervised with the garden, are you?”
Star grinned as a magical measuring tape appeared and started to work over Hermione. “Torrie be my son, Miss Hermione. I not let him go about unsupervised ever. It not be wise to let boys run around like crazy.” She snapped her fingers and the beautiful red gown popped into place on Hermione. “You need the shoes for this dress. So I can get the hem right.” She paused until Hermione nodded and she snapped her fingers again.
Hermione teetered just briefly before she gained her balance. She lifted her skirts to reveal the strappy red heels with ruby encrusted buckles. She huffed. “These rubies are fake, right?”
Star looked affronted. “The Lady Potter not wear paste.”
“I’m not the Lady Potter, yet,” Hermione corrected.
Star scoffed. “You be Lady Potter always—since the day Master Harry be born. He be your twin soul. A marriage ordained by magic,” Star corrected. “The rules of wizards and contracts—that is all just fancy paper wrapped around the gift of your soulmate. You not doubt it—you be Master Harry Potter’s wife in every way but name. Magic says so.”
“Oh,” she said, clearly flummoxed. “But really? Rubies on my shoes? What if they fall off?”
“They not fall off—strong magic on them,” Star said. “If something happen to them—they be returned to the Potter vault. You not worry—all jewels return to vault if they are lost or stolen. It be your job to wear fine clothes and jewels and be pretty at these big dumb events.”
– – – –
“Sirius Black.” Harry leaned back on his pillows as his father’s face appeared in his mirror. “Hi, Niall said you came to see me?” He flushed when his father smirked at him.
“I did,” Sirius agreed. “I wanted to see you before I returned to the Ministry but I was informed that a Gryffindor doesn’t rush a lady’s pleasure. You know Minerva has charms on her, right? She almost interrupted you two. I barely managed to get her out of Gryffindor.”
“You’re the best wing man ever,” Harry said with a laugh. “And I do know about the charms—there are notification charms for non-consensual physical contact of any kind, consensual sexual contact, potions consumption, curses and hexes, and a contraceptive. I didn’t take her, Dad. It was just some… heavy petting… I guess would be the best way to describe it. Orgasms make the best birthday presents.”
“I can’t argue with that,” Sirius said. “Just be careful—with yourself and with her. I’d hate to see either one of you hurt because things happened too quickly. I know that you’re both dealing with bonding magic on top of everything else so I understand how difficult it must be to not touch each other.”
“This is going to sound like an odd complaint but she trusts me too much,” Harry said.
“You’re a good man,” Sirius said.
“I’m a sorely tempted man,” Harry muttered. “I could do seriously morally reprehensible things to that girl and she’d let me. Some of which isn’t even legal in this country.”
“Brits are prudes, my lad, there are plenty of perfectly amazing things that are illegal here,” Sirius smirked when his son just scowled at him. He sighed. “Give yourself some credit and perhaps a little break? I trust your judgment and so should you. You cared for her before you ever even really met her and those few minutes in Chamber really don’t count.”
“No,” he said then winced. “I keep waiting for her to realize that I suppressed her memories of that.”
“You should confess first,” Sirius suggested. “Show her the memory of it.”
“Merlin, that’s the last thing I want to do. You lost your shite and Castius didn’t talk to me for a month, he was so brassed off.”
“It was pretty fucking traumatic!” Sirius snapped. “That thing bit you, nearly killed you and goddamn it, do you know what that would’ve done to me? To have your elves bring me back your body?”
Harry scowled at him. “We had this conversation more than once years ago, Dad. I thought you were past this. You know I had no choice. Riddle would’ve been resurrected and Hermione would’ve been killed if not by that snake then by Riddle himself. We’d be in the middle of a second blood war right now if that had happened.”
“I know,” Sirius said quietly. “Just… there’s is nothing to prepare her for what she’ll see in Emmie’s memories so just arrange a time to meet with her and Minerva. Handle it and get it out of the way.”
– – – –
“Since we’ll be in Emmie’s memory,” Harry began. “All of you will be able to see her even though she’s disillusioned. She’s started the memory with Hermione and Ron following Ginny into the bathroom.”
Hermione shared a look with her mother and found the older woman frowning at her. She sighed. “Ginny had been acting weird all year. I finally convinced Ron that we needed to keep a better eye on her especially when we saw on the twin’s map that she was wandering around by herself despite being warned not to. We got there just in time to see her hiss at the sink and it opened. She jumped down—we jumped right after. She was in some kind of weird trance.”
“The diary’s hold her on that point must have been extreme,” Harry said. “There is nothing quite like a horcrux. No one that thoroughly seduced by the darkness of one could’ve fought it.”
They all three looked at the swirling memory in the pensieve and then turned to the Headmaster who only gave them a grave nod. All four heads of house and the headmaster were in the office preparing to see the memory. Dumbledore had insisted. Harry had made a token protest about Severus’ inclusion but the memory wasn’t his own so he let it go after a brief argument after Severus had taken a vow to not discuss the memory with anyone who wasn’t already aware of the events in the Chamber.
Harry sighed and picked up Hermione’s hand. “I want you to know that I’m very sorry in advance for what you’re about to see but that I can’t regret what I did in the Chamber no matter how much this is probably going to make you angry.”
They spilled into the memory just as Ron and Hermione managed to jump into the sink entrance. Emmie was already down below when they landed. The older Hermione just frowned at her younger self as they progressed over the bones and walked past the shed skin of the snake.
Thirteen-year-old Hermione drew her wand and stopped the large stone door from shutting behind Ginny and all of the professors turned to look at the older version of her in shock.
“What?” Hermione asked.
“You disrupted a parselmagic enchantment set by Voldemort,” Harry said dryly, “at thirteen. It’s quite a thing to see.”
They all passed through the doorway and witnessed Ron trying to take the diary from his sister to devastating results. Little Ginny tossed him half way across the room and called forth the basilisk even as she herself fainted. The younger Hermione darted behind a pillar and huddled there—Emmie threw magical shield around her.
The specter of Tom Riddle burst out of the diary and shouted at the snake in parseltongue.
“He’s telling the basilisk to find Hermione,” Harry said. “To find her and bring her to him for the ritual. He was going to sacrifice her after he used Ginny’s magic to regain his body. The snake was ordered not to kill her.”
Two elves appeared beside Emmie and disappeared just as abruptly as they arrived.
“That was Juno and Eliza.” Harry cleared his throat. “They often take Emmie’s place so she can rest and see the rest of the family. Juno came to me in Paris and Eliza went in search of Fawkes. Neither one of them had the power to bring me directly to the Chamber through the school wards but Fawkes did. Juno nearly killed herself that night—chain apparating not once but twice. The second time she brought me with her back to Scotland. It took her days to recover her magic because she’s very young and my bond with my elves was minimal back then. She turned twenty years old this year. She brought me all the way to the front gates in ten minutes. Elves aren’t normally capable of that kind of long distance apparition until they are in their twenties.”
Fawkes fire travelled into the Chamber at that moment with a twelve year old Harry Potter—dressed in jeans, a pair of trainers, and a t-shirt that proclaimed himself a badass.
“Dad bought me that t-shirt,” Harry said with a laugh. “I wore it until the elves couldn’t repair it anymore.”
The basilisk whipped around the room as the younger Harry hissed at it and its tail crashed into an entire row of columns—including the one that Hermione was hiding behind. She darted out from behind it as masonry flew everywhere. Fawkes attacked the basilisk’s eyes as Hermione sought refuge by the statue of Salazar Slytherin. The younger Harry joined her.
“What? Who are you?” Hermione demanded.
“Honestly, is that your most pressing concern?” Twelve year old Harry demanded, exasperated. “And really if that twit Weasley asked you to jump off the bloody astronomy tower, would you do it?” He huffed when she glared at him and made a grab for the sorting hat as Eliza appeared with it. He pulled the Sword of Gryffindor from it, tossed the hat to Hermione, and proceeded to scale the statue. He hissed at the snake and the basilisk swung around, blind and furious toward the sound.
“What did you say to it?” Severus asked even as the snake reared upwards and the younger Harry stabbed it through the mouth.
Harry flushed. “I called her a bitch. She found it quite insulting.”
The specter of Tom Riddle was screaming even as the younger Harry fell to the ground with the snake, a fang embedded in his arm. The younger Hermione rushed towards Harry and pulled the fang from his arm with a sob.
“Oh, my God, I have… the poison will kill you.”
“Yes, well,” the twelve year old began. “I pretty much always assumed Riddle would be the death of me.” He glared at the specter who was smirking and took the fang from Hermione’s loose grip. “Get the diary, Hermione.”
She crawled to it and brought it back to him with trembling fingers. Harry threw it on the floor and stabbed it. Blood and ink poured out of it much to the horror of everyone watching and Riddle screamed. Harry fell back on his back with a hiss and glared at the seeping wound in his arm.
“I don’t know what to do,” the younger Hermione admitted. “Tell me what to do!”
“Nothing to be done… just… stay here for a minute.” He grabbed her hand. “This is not how I imagined we’d meet, you know.”
“You know me?”
“Just don’t… just don’t hate me when you find out the truth,” the younger Harry asked. “Don’t hate me for it.”
“I won’t, I promise. What is your name?”
Fawkes appeared in that moment and lowered his head to Harry’s arm—crying freely into the wound. The older Hermione shifted closer so she could see the wound being healed on his arm and gasped in surprise when the younger Harry caught her younger self by the head and kissed her mouth quite soundly.
“You cad!” Hermione said with a laugh. “I don’t even remember that! My first kiss and I don’t remember it.”
Harry flushed. “Give me a break, Mi. I was twelve and entitled to a little celebration concerning my unexpected and quite dramatic survival.”
She nudged him and sighed when he wrapped an arm around her. “I’m about to get really irritated with you, right?”
“Yeah, I’m afraid so.”
The thirteen year old Hermione pulled free of the younger Harry and huffed. “I don’t even know your name!”
“Harry James Potter,” he said with a little laugh. He touched her jaw with gentle fingers. “Nice to finally meet you, Hermione Jane Granger.”
Young Hermione blushed prettily. “Harry Potter?”
“In the slightly damaged flesh.” The younger Harry winced as he stood and helped her stand despite his obvious exhaustion. He pulled a familiar blackwood wand and turned to her. “I’m sorry for this. You’ll probably never know how much.” Before she could say anything—he cast on her, hissing and she was surrounded in a bright white glow. He caught her as her eyes drifted shut and laid her down on the floor. He pressed a chaste, reverent kiss to her forehead. “Sleep, sweetheart, and when you wake this will all be over.”
“You obliviated me!” The older Hermione growled. “That’s… just the bloody limit, Harry Potter!” She pulled free of him as the younger version of himself transfigured the carcass of the snake into extremely small version of itself, slipped it into his pocket, and cleaned up all the blood.
“I did not,” Harry said. “I’d have never risked you that way, Hermione. I didn’t have the experience to do something like that with any sort of skill. I used a mind healer’s charm to suppress the memory of the Chamber. That’s all. It was necessary—to protect us both. Even then I wasn’t completely successful because you do have a memory or two from the chamber. You said so yourself.”
The younger Harry picked up the basilisk fang and Fawkes fire traveled away with him. In the memory, Emmie came forward and sat down beside Hermione’s still form and stayed there until Dumbledore appeared in the chamber with Fawkes.
The memory ended and they are all thrown out of the pensieve rather abruptly.
Hermione stared at him for a long moment before clearing her throat. “Can you give those memories back to me or they suppressed permanently?”
“I’d rather Castius Arnou do it,” Harry admitted. “It would require I perform Legilimency on you and you’re pretty irritated at me right now which isn’t exactly fair. I was twelve and I almost died. I should get a little consideration for those two facts.”
She frowned at him. “Right. I agree with that in theory but I’m the one that got rescued like a princess and totally forgot it.”
He winced. “Sorry.”
She took his hand, pushed up his sleeve, and touched the smooth skin of his forearm. “The scar?”
“Had it removed with parselmagic shortly after it happened. It was too unique a wound to leave; even after it was healed. My Dad was afraid I’d be accused of raising a basilisk and we weren’t in the position to admit in public that I’d killed one at Hogwarts. About six months before the Chamber of Secrets, a parselmouth was caught breeding basilisks without a license in Paris. He was executed for it. It’s a rather dark business—the cultivation of a metric ton killing machine.”
“Is the Chamber the only suppressed memories I have?” Hermione asked.
“I don’t know,” Harry said honestly. “I only intended to suppress the Chamber and that is the only time I’ve cast such magic on you. A lot of Muggle-borns are memory charmed in childhood if they have severe bouts of accidental magic. Considering how your parents treated you, there could be suppressed or outright obliviated memories if the magic was extreme or proved to be harmful. Say if you hurt a classmate in primary school with accidental magic or even one of your parents.”
Hermione nodded. “Right. Okay.”
“Scale of one to ten, one being totally okay with me and ten being beating me bloody…” Harry started. “Where do you think we are right now?”
“About a four,” she said with a laugh but then she grew serious. “I’d never hit you, Harry. Not ever. I don’t want you to ever for one moment to compare to me those horrible Muggles. Though hexing you silly is still on the table.”
“You’re going to have to catch me first,” Harry said with a laugh and Godric lit up on his neck. He flashed away with a burst of flame.
And Hermione huffed. She turned to Fawkes. “Help a witch out?”
Fawkes flew across the room, snatched her up and fire traveled out of the office.
She found him on the Quidditch pitch, Rowena and Godric sprawled out with him—both of them quite large. She thanked Fawkes for the ride and stepped over Godric. With a little huff, she laid down with him and stared up at the night sky. “You’ve got an essay to write for Charms.”
“I do,” Harry agreed.
“Did you have anything to do with Fudge being killed?” Hermione asked softly.
“Would it bother you if I did?”
“Are you sure?” Harry asked.
“He was a monster,” Hermione said. “Perhaps it is our fate to battle such things in this world. I’d have done him in myself if I could’ve. Did you want Healer Arnou to retrieve my memories because you fear you can’t or because you think I’m angry with you?”
“I wouldn’t have a problem doing it. It’s my enchantment. It would, in fact, be easier if I did it but I could hurt you if you’re angry with me.” He exhaled.
“Can you protect my mind from it?” Hermione asked. “Prevent anyone else from using Legilimency against me?”
“Yes but it require a stupid amount of faith in me,” Harry said.
“You have to know I trust you,” Hermione said. “I mean, I know you must think I’m something of a slag for letting Joshua… I mean, we’d barely known each other a month when I had sex with him.”
“Enough of that,” Harry snapped. He sat up and glared at her. “I don’t think that at all.”
“And I let you touch me when we’d known each other much less than a month,” Hermione persisted.
“Did you read any of those books I gave you on soulmate magic?” Harry demanded. “Look, Hermione, if I’d been here all along—since your first year, we’d have probably become lovers sometime in the middle of our third year or perhaps the beginning of fourth. Puberty would’ve driven us together because sex magic is ideal for forging magicals bonds. Despite the very Victorian appearance of magical society—sex is not the taboo here it is the Muggle world. The age of consent for magicals the world over is just fifteen as long as their partner is within a year of their age.”
“Ron called me a whore for kissing you,” Hermione said.
“He’s an arsehole!” Harry said crossly. “Really. His mother is part of a bloody coven—the biggest coven in the all of Europe. There is no telling how much sex magic they’ve created. I wouldn’t be surprised to find that Ginny was created in a sex ritual. She is the first female Weasley born in hundreds of years after all.”
“Gross,” Hermione whispered. “The coven watched Mr. and Mrs. Weasley fuck?”
Harry laughed. “Well, there is the option of turning your back during such rituals as long as you remain in the circle, but honestly, most magicals don’t have a problem watching others fuck.” He rolled to his side and propped his head up on one hand. “You’d be opposed to it? My conclave is fifty-two members strong currently. My age is the only stumbling block when it came to me leading sex magic rituals. They’ll eventually request it from me—especially after I marry.”
“Have they done sex rituals already?”
Harry nodded and watched her cheeks darken. “Castius lead the last one.”
“With your Dad?” Hermione demanded scandalized. “You watched your Dad have sex?”
“No,” Harry said with a little grin. “I turned my back. I did have to listen to it but frankly I’ve heard that before—I mean, who hasn’t heard their parents having sex?”
She made a face. “Sometimes, I could hear my parents’ bed frame hitting the wall but they never made any noise. And it normally lasted ten or so minutes.”
“Wow, no wonder they are so miserable,” Harry said and grinned when she laughed.
“How would you protect my mind?” Hermione asked.
“There are a couple of ways,” Harry admitted. “I can place a barrier it would deflect casual Legilimency and even a direct attack from a regular wizard.”
“But it wouldn’t protect me from a parselmouth.”
“No, it would dissuade a parselmouth but a talented and determined one could break it down eventually.”
“The other option?”
“I could use parselmagic to build a full mindscape for you. It would be exhausting and very intimate.”
“Okay,” Hermione said. “Can you give me the barrier now and we could work on the mindscape over the Yule break?”
“Reasonable,” Harry agreed. He sat up and folded his legs into the lotus position. “Come sit in my lap.”
She slid astride him, settled into the spread of his thighs with a shiver and wrapped her legs around his waist. “Interesting position. That book talked about having sex like this.”
He cupped her ass and shifted her slightly. “Tantric sex. Read about it. Never done it. Not sure I have the patience for it.” He nuzzled her jaw and groaned when she wrapped her arms around his neck. “Though the thought of staying inside you for hours like this is pretty appealing intellectually.”
She hummed her agreement. “We’re in the middle of the Quidditch pitch, Harry.”
“It’s dark,” Harry said with a laugh. He pulled his wand. “Ready?”
“Ready,” she agreed.
White magic poured out of the blackwood wand and enveloped her gently, breaking the enchantment he’d put on her memories of the chamber first then slowly erecting a shield to occlude her mind. He locked it into place with a parseltongue password in his own dialect. If another parselmouth attacked her mind—she would know and maybe it would be enough to allow her to fight back.
He ended the spell and she exhaled sharply. “I really enjoyed that kiss, you know. The first one, in the Chamber. I ought to stun you into next week for hiding that from me.”
He kissed her gently, chastely, just as sweetly as he had in the Chamber and she sighed as she looped her arms around his neck.
“I didn’t order the deaths of Fudge or Umbridge,” Harry said. “I do own the snake that did it but she acts independently from me and I accepted her judgment of the situation and her actions as just.” He held her tight when she started to shift away from him. “They were plotting to gain control of me politically and financially by forcing my marriage to Ginny Weasley or a similar pure-blood witch they could control. Your cold blooded murder was step one in their plan.”
“That vicious bitch,” Hermione whispered fiercely.
“My runespoor, the Fates, spied on Fudge. When she gathered all the information she needed—she dealt with them as she saw fit. I was not consulted. Which is just as well because Fudge wouldn’t have died quite so quickly if I’d had a choice in the matter.” Harry rubbed her back as he spoke. “I sent the Fates to Japan. They’ll return when they’re finished visiting Master Ito.”
“Okay,” Hermione said after a few seconds. “How many snakes do you have in Hogwarts right now?”
“Six including Godric and Rowena,” Harry admitted. “The others are vipers. Osiris, Horus, Hathor, and Isis. They won’t hurt you or anyone else in the school unless there is just cause. Anyone of them would kill to protect me or one of the children from Potter Redoubt.”
“Fay,” Hermione said. “Fay Dunbar is from Potter Redoubt, isn’t she?”
“Why do you ask that?” Harry asked.
“She… called you ‘my Lord’,” Hermione said. “That night in the common room when you argued with Ginny. Also? She’s gotten downright vicious with Ginny since you arrived. But has no romantic interest in you whatsoever. It makes sense if she’s your ward.”
“Fay joined Potter Redoubt when she was nine years old,” Harry admitted. “She is a pure-blood and her parents were killed while traveling abroad. Instead of coming home to a pair of first cousins who were going to rob her blind—she arranged to be portkeyed to Paris and showed up on our front step demanding sanctuary within Potter Redoubt. We had a hell of a fight, legally, but when the judge in the case offered to split the responsibility—the cousins could have Fay and my father could be her financial guardian—the couple withdrew their case and haven’t spoken with her since. They did try to take her money but the goblins refused to even discuss the Dunbar vaults with them.”
“Is she… I mean…” Hermione huffed. “Should I say anything?”
“No, if she wanted you or anyone else to know she would say,” Harry explained patiently. “The Dunbar family is very wealthy, Hermione. Fay is set for life when she turns seventeen. My Dad has carefully invested and protected her fortune—he’s nearly doubled her net worth since her parents were killed. Her guardianship was sealed by the French courts so only the other residents of Potter Redoubt even know she’s my ward.”
Hermione nodded. “Okay.”
“Just be her friend,” Harry advised. “She’ll tell you what she wants you to know. Fay is a cunning bit of business. I was honestly surprised she wasn’t sorted into Slytherin.”
– – – –
Hermione took a deep breath as she settled onto a bench out in the courtyard. “Star.”
The Head House Elf of the House of Potter appeared instantly. “Yes, Miss Hermione?”
She patted the bench beside her. “Would you sit and speak with me? You aren’t too busy?”
Star hopped up onto the bench. “Not too busy to sit with my Master Harry Potter’s Lady.”
“Harry showed me Emmie’s memory of the Chamber of Secrets.” Hermione looked away from the elf as she spoke. “I was so stupid that night, Star. Not only did I endanger myself, I nearly got your daughter and Harry killed as well.”
“You were doing what you thought you should for another,” Star said. “I not be mad at you for it. You have a good heart. Your compassion be your best part. I know you long time, you know.”
Hermione took a deep breath. “Not many people see that in me, I guess.”
“They only see the surface of you—let you fool them with your facts and books.” Star leaned back on her hands. “Remember when you be nine years and you won that prize? You gives all the money to charity.”
Hermione closed her eyes. “My father was so angry with me.”
“I remember that, too,” Star said. “He suffer for it.”
“Did Emmie break his arm?” Hermione asked shocked. “He said he fell at work.”
Star snorted. “Emmie be at school with you always during day. I break his arm.”
“Oh Star.” Hermione laughed, clearly shocked. “I don’t know whether to be horrified or thank you.”
Star smirked. “He be jerk. Karma be bitch. That’s life.” She swung her feet a little. “But you not call me here to talk about Chamber of Secrets or your evil Muggle parents.”
“No.” She touched Gryffindor’s Tear. “I need… he puts me before himself and it infuriates me.”
“It is the way of soulmates,” Star said quietly. “I not be thrilled with his choices but I be respecting them. I get mad, yes, but he was always a difficult boy.”
“He’s a difficult man, too.” Hermione huffed.
“You worried you hurt him with your magic even with the Tear on?”
“Yes,” Hermione admitted. “I need… Could you separate us if I lose control of my magic again? Could you take him far away from me so he doesn’t get hurt?”
“No.” Star cleared her throat. “It would be… he would consider it betrayal.”
“Oh.” Hermione huffed. “I think it would kill me if I hurt him, Star. I don’t…” Tears welled into her eyes. “I keep seeing that basilisk biting him and the only thing he asked of me was not to hate him. How… how is… God.” She covered her face with her hands and cried as quietly as she could.
Star patted her back gently and said nothing until she regained control of herself.
“I do everything to keep you both safe,” Star promised. “You get married one day and have pretty babies and live in beautiful house he be building in Godric’s Hollow.”
Hermione took the tissue the elf conjured and took a calming breath. “He’ll make pretty babies.”
“He be pretty baby,” Star allowed. “For wizard. Want to see pictures?”
Star held out her hands an album popped into them. She opened it and Hermione made a soft sound of delight. “Oh, Star, he’s adorable.”
“This be Master Harry at St. Mungo’s the day he come home. Master James and Master Sirius hot mess through whole thing! Fainting and carrying on. Just ridiculous. But Mistress Lily be a total badass.”