Never Mine

BY : RynStar15
Category: Harry Potter > Het - Male/Female > Draco/Hermione
Dragon prints: 17389
Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter or the characters therein and do not make any money or intend any copyright infringement by placing them here.

Like Breaking the Chain, this is a previously written story that I am fixing up and reposting. The story is fully written, I am just cleaning and improving for your reading pleasure! Hope you all enjoy, please let me know what you think!

 

This story is set after HBP, non DH compliant (though loosely based with themes.) 7th year at Hogwarts, the search for the Horcruxes has commenced, the war rages on. Lots of dark angst ahead with some yummy smut later on.

 

...

 

He was never mine.

I knew this. I told myself time after time. I had steeled myself for this very moment. But watching the back of his robes whip around the corner and out of sight ripped my soul from my body and I crashed to the floor, my heart shattering into pieces around me.

But I never made a sound. Because you can't lose something that was never yours to begin with.

...

Three months earlier...

The scene was laid out before me, but I didn't see it. I couldn't see anything but blurred shapes and muted colors that ran together as if in water. Except for the red. That was vivid, harsh, blinding; standing out like a beacon against the horrific things that did not deserve color. The blood that spilled, oozed between blades of grass and lips. The veins in the dead, blood-shot eyes of the people around me. Those glowing orbs that stood out against the pale face of the creature who stole Harry in his clutches not moments before. But I turned, I turned away from the vacant patch of earth where my best friend had vanished from view because there was nothing I could do, not right then, not for him. He was on his own.

And so I moved on to the next victim, the next heartless soul to fall before my wand. I struck one to the ground. His back was turned to me, but I knew it was a man, the lithe way he moved, predatory. He hit the ground, pale hands darting out to catch himself on the ice speckled grass. I flipped him with a flick of my wand, ignoring the pounding of my heart which was so loud as to block out sound altogether. I knew this man, had seen him several times, on several hunts and battles and massacres. I looked him straight in the eyes so that he knew he wouldn't be joining the next.

By the time I turned to the sound of a gruff cry, the Death Eater was dead. I had killed before, and I would kill again. Every time I did, a piece of me was lost forever in a sea of slaughter and terror and havoc. It was lost in a war that should have ended long ago.

My attention was jerked back to the screaming man. He flew through the air, landing with a thud on the hard ground. Friend or foe was not apparent as I rushed forward, my numb legs moving of their own accord. I stumbled to the ground, tripping over my own feet and sliding in blood and piss and other bodily fluids that were smeared around, mixing in with the dying grass. A freezing wind whipped at my body, tugging me back, tearing at my hair and robes and courage.

The figure rolled over just as I reached them and the first thing I noticed was the mask. Death Eater. For some reason I'll never know the urge to rip off the silver shield overcame me. I wanted to see the face of the man at my mercy.

I should have known by the eyes, by the strikingly bright hair. Draco Malfoy.

Friend or foe?

The mask falling silently to the grass beside us, I trained my wand on him and he did not flinch, nor cower, nor plea for his life. He just stared up at me with grey eyes, haunted with a past I could never know.

I knew he had come here with his father, with Voldemort. I knew he wasn't to be trusted. He hadn't even come back to Hogwarts this year. He had followed the footsteps of his sire. Had become a Death Eater, joined the ranks of the enemy, attempted to murder Dumbledore. But looking down at him, I saw not a traitor nor a killer. I saw the blood covering the side of his pale face, the hair that clung to his sweaty head though it was below freezing outside. I saw my classmate, a real human who had hopes and dreams and ambitions. It was not something I thought of often when looking upon a Death Eater. It was something Moody had trained us not to do. We didn't think, we just acted before they could. We did what we had to do to survive. But as a war raged around me and a sworn enemy lie at my feet, I couldn't move, I couldn't think, I couldn't react.

In a pulseless instant I had moved and grabbed the front of his robes with a new-born strength, hoisting him to his feet and bringing his face close to mine, my right hand letting go of his front and pressing the tip of my wand into the tender flesh of his blood-covered neck, searing the skin.

"Us or them," I heard myself growl. Who was this person who had taken over my body? For I certainly hadn't thought these words before they crossed my lips.

"What?" he croaked, stunned, his voice lower than I remembered, his angular face twisted in confusion.

"Us," I repeated, staring hard into those silver eyes which I had to look up to meet. "Or them. Choose. Now."

I expected him to joke, to laugh in my face, call me a Mudblood and taunt me that I couldn't do it, would never kill him. But he didn't. He just stared back, his breath puffing against my cheek, harsh, fast. The battle raged around us, screams renting the air, a harsh wind whipping at our robes.

"Now, Malfoy. Choose." I dug my wand a little harder against his skin to emphasize my point. Over his left shoulder I watched as Ernie MacMillan succumbed to Bellatrix Lestrange. She laughed, a high-pitched, evil sound, and a lump of fire and pain caught in my throat, choking me. I clenched my teeth at the loss of a good friend and turned back to Malfoy who was watching me completely nonplussed.

"Hermione, let's go! We don't have time for bargaining!"

Tonks. The woman sprinted past me, taking up the fight with her aunt that Ernie had lost. My grip tightened.

"Time's up," I said. His blood-slicked hands gripped my forearms and slid against my cold skin.

"You," he croaked. I stared into his eyes and as that vice-like grip squeezed, his face shifted. For an infinite moment, we looked into one another; we saw what no other person right at that moment could see. We saw two humans, two wizards, two people locked in a battle that was theirs to fight, theirs to lose. I saw the strength in the choice he made, could feel the fear that consumed him but which he never let show. I saw all the years of torment mending themselves with his instantaneous decision.

What I failed to see was the boy who had tortured Harry, and Ron, and all my friends for years, the boy who had wished me dead since the day he'd met me, the boy who had chosen to kill innocent people simply because they had a different bloodline. I failed to see the hard, cold soul of a heartless man honed by the people who should have protected him from this.

All I saw was what I wanted to see.

I nodded once and with a grunt, threw him to the ground, Disarming him and putting him in a Full Body-Bind. His wild eyes stared up at me but I refused to meet them. Glancing around the field to ensure safety, I Banished him back to Headquarters and threw myself into the fray, two wands blazing.

...

 

Endless hours later found me on my back in the mud, the night sky spread out before me, a pale tint to the east told of a coming morning. The weak stars twinkled above, emitting a lonely light to the darkness of the world around me. I rolled my head to my right, my frizzy hair and the ice crusted grass crunched beneath it. I peered at the havoc the night had wreaked; the bodies, the blood, the black spots of earth that were singed by fire. I closed my eyes for the first time in a long time and breathed in that sickly scent of death and sulfur.

I heard someone approaching but did not stir. I wasn't afraid, the Death Eaters had been rounded up an hour ago, sent back to Azkaban where they would break out in a few days and the whole thing would start over again. But until then, all I had to worry about was Charms homework. Professor Flitwick had decided to award the N.E.W.T students with a three-foot essay about the dangers of turning inanimate objects into animals. I had only just started to discuss the dietary issues the tapdancing mice I had produced were having when we'd gotten another call. And away we went.

"Hermione?"

I didn't move, didn't turn to look at the owner of the voice, simply closed my eyes. Ron sat down next to me anyway and started picking at the grass.

"I know you're not asleep."

Very observant. I rolled my head toward him and stared at his robe covered knee. It had grass stains. He must have fallen at some point.

"We should get back, you know."

I was quiet for a moment, chewing over the words, wondering whether I really wanted to move or not. My body was exhausted and just then, as I held my breath, I felt like the dead around me that we had yet to get around to identifying and sending to the morgue.

"Is he-?"

"Not yet."

We were silent. This was the first time Harry had been gone for more than an hour or so. The worry ate at my gut and the familiar burning sensation returned. I felt the fear and the pain brimming up and swallowed quickly, holding it back.

"He'll be really tired when he gets back," I said, my own fingers weaving between the frozen strands of grass, plucking them from their hold on the ground.

"Yeah."

"You can sleep in my room tonight."

It was something that had happened several times now. After every attack Mrs. Weasley would make us all stay at the Burrow for a few nights, our homework being owled to us there. Harry was usually voluntarily taken by one of the leading Death Eaters and he had always gotten away shortly after being delivered to their master. This was the first time Voldemort had come himself. On these nights, Ron would stay in the room Ginny and I shared on the second floor and Ginny would stay in Ron's room with Harry. We had a feeling Mrs. Weasley knew about this arrangement and just chose not to comment. It's not like Angelina Johnson hadn't been caught once or twice in the twin's room while George slept on the couch.

"Come on, I'll make you some tea," Ron said as he threw the grass he had gathered in his hand back to their resting place.

"You?" I grinned as I turned to him and raised myself up on my elbow so as to see his face. "You're going to make me tea? Ron, do you even know how?"

"Yes! I bloody well know how to make tea, Miss Know-It-All. It's just- mum makes it better, that's all." He resumed plucking at the grass on his lap as his lips twitched. I couldn't contain my laughter and let it bubble forth, a soothing balm. His lips spread, his cheeks crinkling with laugh lines, the freckles crowding into one another. In one smooth move, far too graceful for someone as tall as he, he gathered himself to his feet and reached down to help me to mine. I let him and looked around. A few straggling Aurors and Order members who had not been injured were scattered across the field bent over, running their wands over bodies and tagging them.

"Ron, go on ahead. I'm just going to help out here a while longer," I said. I couldn't just leave these people to do this alone. Besides, it wasn't as if I was going to sleep anyway.

"Hermione, don't do this to yourself."

"Someone needs to be there when Harry gets back. Ginny will still be in the hospital now. Go on. I'll catch up."

He knew I was lying just as I knew. But he wrapped his long arms around me anyway and Apparated out, going back to headquarters to calm his mother who would be distraught over Ginny and Bill's minor injuries.

I struck out, reaching the first body and kneeling on the ground. It was a Death Eater. The boy's face was young, hardly older than myself. Green eyes were open to the world that he had wasted. I closed them before running my wand over his chest as Mad-Eye had taught us. Gold letters scrawled from the tip of my vine wood wa-

Wait. This wasn't vine wood. And it most certainly wasn't my wand. It was noticeably shorter, by at least five inches and, if I wasn't mistaken, hawthorn. Why would I have-?

Malfoy. This was Malfoy's wand from when I had taken it from him. I hadn't wanted to send him to headquarters with it or the power to cause any harm, but I had also intended to get to him first. But in the midst of all the hustle and bustle, I'd forgotten. My stomach leaped as I worried over the welcome he had received. Who had gotten to him first? Would they have killed him? No, certainly not...

But the harsh fact was that I didn't know. And I wouldn't, not now. I shook myself and pocketed his wand, pulling out my own and repeating the spell. The gold letters spelled out: Wood, Carter. Wood? As in Oliver Wood? Did he have a brother? But no, this boy was too young, he would have been at Hogwarts with us... I pushed back this thought as well and tagged him, banishing him to the mortuary we had set up for the Death Eaters. Once catalogued, they would be sent to the Malfoy Manor. What those bastards did with the bodies afterward was none of our accord. We had other things to think about.

I moved on to the next one. Languini, Rachel. An Order member. Mother of two. I thought of the two blonde boys she had showed me pictures of after the last attack. It had been less than a month before...

Kessler, Marsha. Order member. A Muggle-born.

Scott, Kyle. Auror. His wife, Tara, would be devastated.

Scott, Tara. At least they were together.

Lydie, Franklin. Good old Frank. He'd lived a long life.

The next one I rolled over made my breath catch. Shaking myself, I tagged Patil, Parvati and sent her away.

I didn't even know she'd come. She and Padma were never allowed, their parents forbade it. And for good reason.

The names floated over and above me as I moved from person to person. I hadn't seen this many dead yet. It had been a devastating loss for both sides.

I stood from my last body, a Death Eater so old he could have been my grandpappy, and popped my back. I reached my hands up to the soft pink sky and soaked in the beautiful colors. Life.

"Hermione, go get some sleep. We can finish up here."

I turned at the familiar voice and smiled a wearily at Tonks. "How's Remus?"

"Better, I think. He woke up for a few minutes a bit ago. I had to get out, do something-"

I nodded. I understood.

"Go on. Harry will be home soon."

I looked at the older woman whose hair was black and straight now and took the hand she held out. We squeezed and held for a moment and then Tonks went back to siphoning the blood from the grounds. I looked around at the hilly field we'd tracked the Death Eaters to and knew that in a few hours time, it would look just as it had when the sun had begun to fall all those hours ago. I closed my eyes, thought of the Burrow where I knew the others would be, and turned on the spot. The sucking sensation of Apparition stole over me and I landed on my feet in the kitchen where Molly was nursing a cup of tea which, I figured, was probably amply doused with Ogden's. She stood immediately with a strangled sound and embraced me tightly. I held her for a minute before pressing her back into her chair. I quickly conjured a handkerchief and handed it to her so she could blow her nose and wipe her eyes.

"Oh, Hermione, you should be in bed, dear. If I had known you were still out-"

She really must be in a state, I thought. For her not to know where each of her children were, blood or not, meant she was completely off her rocker.

"Mrs. Weasley, why don't you go to bed too?"

"No, no, I'll stay up and wait for Harry," she brushed me off. I stepped forward and put my hand on her shoulder.

"He'll come back," I told her, more conviction in my voice than I felt. I had to believe it. There was no other choice.

Mrs. Weasley said nothing but placed her chubby hand on top of mine and dug in, tears streaming silently down her face. I looked away.

I stood there a long time and the two of us watched the sun rise weakly in the late November sky. It hung there, bobbing in the mist, burning my eyes, but I never looked away. When the sound of Apparition sounded in the living room we both jumped and I turned to look, my vision obscured by a large black spot created by the destruction of my corneas. I tore through the kitchen door and barreled into him. I didn't have to look, didn;t have to see to know it was him. I could feel it.

When he hugged me back I heaved a sigh of relief.

"Are you alright? Should we take you to St. Mungo's?" I asked, stepping back and wishing that darned spot would go away so I could look at him properly.

"No, I'm alright." His voice was barely above a whisper.

"Harry?" Mrs. Weasley choked out as she ran in behind me. I moved aside to allow her to greet him. She fussed and she cried and she patted him down, checking for bruises. I wondered if she could see that dang black spot that followed my vision everywhere. As it shrank I could see the wariness in Harry's gaunt features and did us both a favor by Stunning Mrs. Weasley and Levitating her to the couch.

Harry opened his mouth to thank me but I waved him off. I didn't need it. I couldn't stop looking at him. Even though I always keep hope, a part of me dies every time my best friend is in peril and every time I wonder if he'll come back, if he'll make it through. Or if one day it will be too much and I'll have to live a life without him. It was too much to think about, which was why I didn't. I couldn't.

"Ginny is at St. Mungo's, but she's fine. I'm sure she can come now, if you'd like."

But Harry shook his head and my brows constricted in confusion at the look he was giving me.

"Not now, Hermione. I just need you tonight. And Ron. I just need us to be together. Is that alright?"

I nodded, my heart twisting. "Of course it's alright. Come on, come to bed."

I held out my hand, which he took, and started forward, but Harry stood still rooted to the spot, clutching my appendage. I turned to him to see the tears threatening to escape behind broken glasses, his dirty, jet black hair all over. My heart ached quietly as he broke down, wailing right there in the middle of the Weasley's living room. He grabbed me hard and held me tight, like I was some sort of rag doll a scared young girl might cling to in the middle of the night when the monsters would creep out from under her bed.

But Harry's monsters were real, and they were more than I would ever understand. So I let him lean on me, his full weight pressing me into the ground until my knees buckled. I nearly brought the both of us to the floor but hands came out and took Harry's weight from me. Ron transferred our sobbing friend to his arms and held him close, fat tears rolling down his own face. It was the most sentimental I could ever remember seeing him. His eyes were closed and he was saying something to Harry, something I couldn't hear. I gave them their time, two best friends who needed each other without the judgment of others. Finally, Ron got Harry to calm down enough to lug him up the steep stairs and I tucked a throw blanket around Mrs. Weasley's sleeping form and followed them. The three of us lay down, unashamed to be sleeping side by side, and Harry drifted off quickly, Ron following suit not long after. But as I raked my fingers through Harry's oily hair, my mind could only think back to that blonde haired boy who I'd left to the mercy of our side.

...

XOXO

RynStar15



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