BY : ~*LissaDream & snowblind12
Category: Harry Potter > General > General
Dragon prints: 2238
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No need to leave a review OR read this story if you are going to complain about OR if the following things bother you:

1. Character Pairing: If you don't like a Slytherin/Hermione pairing, move on. This story is not for you
2. Age Difference of Character Pairing: The age gap just ISN'T that big of a deal.
3. Any of the following tags:

Possible Adult Tags: Adult situations, graphic sex, adult language, dubious consent, non-consensual, anal sex, BDSM, bi-sexual, Domination, submission, double penetration, Dominant/submissive relationships, exhibitionism, hurt/comfort, hand job, humiliation, heterosexual relationship, homosexual relationships, Master/slave, oral sex, rimming, masturbation, spanking, use of a variety of sex toys and BDSM implements/tools, con/non-con, bondage, suspension, sensory deprivation, orgasm denial, edging, role playing, public nudity, public sex, outdoor sex, one night stand, breath control, character death, blackmail, threesomes or moresomes. More tags to be added as necessary. Not all of these are guaranteed to be in this story.

Read at your own risk.

This story is not for everyone and we understand if it's not your thing! That's the great thing about fanfiction, there's something for everyone. Simply move on if this story isn't for you ;o)


by Snowblind12 and LissaDream
BETA: Raynephoenix2


Hermione was curled up in a small ball, sitting on the wooden steps in the tent next to the glow and heat of a lantern. Ron had left them. Had felt their mission wasn’t worth it. That she and Harry weren’t worth it. She had never been so devastated in her entire life.

Music was playing quietly. She looked up when Harry held his hand out for her and took it within her own, so he could pull her up. He removed the Horcrux from her neck and his fingers caressed her skin, making her shiver involuntarily. Taking her hands in both of his, he pulled her into the center of the tent. Hermione almost laughed aloud when he started to undulate his hips to the beat of the song – sort of to the beat, anyway. She knew what he was trying to do, and she was so grateful for the distraction that she let him. He twisted and twirled her. They danced and laughed for the first time in what felt like years.

When Harry pulled her in for a hug and nuzzled her shoulder with his face, she felt a sob catch in her throat. Hermione wrapped an arm around his shoulder, setting her chin on her knuckles. The music softened as the song trailed off and they pulled apart. Looking at each other sadly for a moment, Hermione turned to leave, but Harry grabbed her hand unexpectedly and pulled her back around. His other hand came up to cup her face and her lips parted in surprise.

“Harry…?” she whispered.

“I just…” Harry trailed off and leaned in slowly, giving her time to back away if she wanted. Hermione’s heart thudded hard against her ribs – she wasn’t sure – but she also wasn’t going to deny him. They were both so…lonely. When his lips settled sweetly over hers, Hermione responded in kind and was surprised when an instant heat coursed through her. She had never thought of Harry in this way before, and the connection was shocking.

Apparently, Harry had the same feeling, because before either of them had a chance to process what was happening, they were wrapped tightly in each other’s arms. Mouths molded desperately – needy and hot – as fingers delved into tangled, dirty hair.

She didn’t remember undressing, she didn’t remember getting to the bunk. She did remember how it felt when he entered her – thick and hard and slow…so slow. Stretching, making her head fall back with a gasp of pleasure. She remembered staring into his eyes when he stilled, letting them both process what was happening. She remembered the tear that streaked down her temple, and how he caught it with his thumb and asked her if she was okay.

She remembered telling him she was perfect. Then he had kissed her again, gathering her tight in his arms as they moved together, loved together, came together. They knew after that night they could never go back – and neither of them would have ever wanted to.

The harder they worked at their mission and the longer they were alone, the closer they grew. Anyone would have thought that impossible – they had already been the best friends, after all. Always inseparable, but now it was like they were two sides of the same coin. They moved together, they finished each other’s sentences, they fought for each other, and they loved each other – desperately.

Harry knew true fear when Hermione came barreling at Nagini in Godric’s Hollow, putting herself between him and the snake and shoving them both out of the window as she Disapparated them in mid-air.

Hermione sobbed as she dragged him out of the pond with the sword of Gryffindor. He destroyed the Horcrux while Hermione watched a version of herself tell Harry he was her second choice – that she loved Ron and was only with him because Ron had left her.

They held each other after and she told him for the first time. “I thought it was Ron, Harry, but I was wrong. It was you, it is you. You know that I love you, right? I love you!” They stripped each other of their soaking clothes when they got back to the tent and made love until the watery winter sun lightened the walls of the tent.

She was drifting to sleep in his arms when he placed his mouth next to the delicate shell of her ear and whispered, “I love you, too, Hermione. When this is all over, marry me.”

“Yes,” she breathed. Without a second thought; without a second guess she agreed to be his. It didn’t matter what Ron might think, she didn’t care how it would make Ginny feel. She would follow Harry Potter to the ends of the earth and back again.

Forest after cliffside, countryside after glen, they roamed the United Kingdom, not knowing what direction to take next. Phineus Nigellus told them about the radio show and they were able to tune in and hear their friends. Curled in front of the fire, piled under blankets with cups of weak tea and a dry loaf of bread as a snack, they talked about what they should try next. That’s when Harry said HIS name and their wards came crashing down around them.

“RUN HERMIONE!” he screamed, shoving her through the tent. They ran as fast as they could, but it wasn’t fast enough. They were going to catch her. She sent a stinging hex at Harry when she knew she wouldn’t be able to outrun their attackers. Hermione knew he’d never leave her behind. They were in this together.

Harry screamed her name until he ripped his vocal chords at the Manor. When it was over, and they were safe at Shell Cottage, their world turned upside down.

“Ron’s … what?” Harry was shocked, horrified. Hermione, who was being held tightly in his arms, started to sob uncontrollably.

“Dead,” Bill said, voice trembling. “A couple months back. Snatchers. It’s been rough. Mum and Dad and the twins are with Auntie Muriel.”

Harry could barely breathe, he pulled his almost hysterical fiancée more firmly into his embrace and buried his nose in her hair. He didn’t miss the way Ginny glared at them from a shadowed corner of the room. Harry knew she was an observant girl, he knew seeing him and Hermione together like this was hurting her. Part of him would always love Ginny, but Hermione was it for him, now. She was his everything, and he wasn’t going to defend it or apologize for it.

They breathed comfortably for a few days. Ate food that filled their bellies. Buried Dobby, mourned Ron. Two weeks in, their plans for the Gringotts break-in were going well. They would be leaving in a week. Then their lives changed again when Hermione stood from the table begging off eating to take a nap late one morning and abruptly fainted to the floor.

Fleur insisted it was exhaustion – that they weren’t giving themselves the opportunity to rest more. Harry knew that wasn’t it, though. Hermione was too strong, she’d had many days full of much deeper fatigue. Bill did a diagnostic charm later in the evening, after Hermione had slept away most of the afternoon.

“What’s wrong?” Harry asked anxiously, sitting next to Hermione’s hip on the small bed, holding her hand fiercely with his own. Fleur and Ginny stood in the doorway. Ginny’s face was clouded with anger, her eyes dark with malice. It was an expression he had never seen on her face before. It hit him in that moment how much his old girlfriend had changed since he had seen her last. She seemed almost taller and leaner and in this particular moment, foreboding. The war was changing them all.

Bill cleared his throat awkwardly, glancing at his baby sister with apprehensive but sympathetic eyes. “Hermione’s pregnant,” he said softly.

Harry and Hermione stared at each other in shock. They had faithfully used the contraceptive charm. They said so aloud. “It’s been known to fail before,” Fleur murmured quietly from the doorway as Ginny turned silently and fled the scene. The remaining four flinched when they heard an anguished scream before a door slammed.

Fleur quickly left the doorway, going after Ginny to give the younger girl comfort. Bill cleared his throat and made a soft excuse to leave, uncomfortable with the look and emotions being exchanged between the young couple.

Tears spilled over Hermione’s cheeks and Harry quickly moved closer, grasping her face and using his thumbs to smooth the wetness from her face. “Hey,” he whispered. “Hey, it’s okay.”

“I’m sorry,” she replied with a sob. “I’m so sorry, Harry.”

“Shh, no.” He pulled her roughly into his arm and she buried her face in his neck, sobs wracking her body. “It’s okay – hey! It’s okay! You know this is as much my fault as it is yours, yeah?” They chuckled together softly as he rubbed her back in firm, soothing circles. “I always knew I wanted to be a dad,” he told her. “I know the timing kind of sucks, but I love you.” He pressed a kiss to her head as he felt her arms cling to him even more tightly as she let out a mirthless laugh.

“The timing sucks,” she repeated incredulously. “It does, I agree. And you know I love you – we’ll figure this out. But Harry, I will not be hidden away somewhere. I go where you go. End of. I am not letting you leave here without me.”

He pulled back and cupped her face with both hands. “I would have expected nothing less from you, but you know I have to try.”

Hermione set her jaw stubbornly and it was all Harry could do not to laugh. A bubble of joy was sitting in his belly – it felt dangerously delicious. Like real happiness. “Please stay here when I leave, love,” he murmured. “Take care of our baby. I swear I’ll come back to you.”

She let out a choked sob as she replied. “Like hell, Harry James Potter. Like. Bloody. Hell.” They laughed ironically together, but he stopped as he watched her eyes light for the first time in days. Desire flamed hot and fierce in his chest. He silenced her giggles with his mouth, his hands sinking into her hair to hold her in place.

Hermione groaned against his mouth, trying to get closer to him. “I need you,” she whispered, her lips brushing his as she spoke while her body slid against his. He pulled back to ward and lock the door and silence the room before setting his wand on the nightstand, parallel to hers. They both looked at their wands for a moment, it was oddly intimate, seeing the phoenix and vine wands so.

“Let’s get married now,” he pleaded. “Tomorrow. Please, Hermione?” He settled his mouth over hers before she could answer, pressing her back into the bed while pulling her night shirt up and off her slender frame.

She pushed at his shoulders, making enough room between them to divest him of his jumper. The rest of their clothes quickly followed suit and then he was playing her like a finely tuned instrument, his fingers dancing over her core. She rocked into him, begging for him to be inside her. As soon as he slipped between her folds, she came, he’d had her so close to the edge already.

“I love you, Harry,” she sobbed with her release, arching into him. “I love you!” She peppered his face with kisses before latching on to the pulse point in his neck as he moved in her, bringing her again before he poured himself into her.

“Yes,” she answered softly when their heart beats had slowed. “Let’s get married tomorrow.”

Harry and Ginny had a row that evening, when he had asked to use an owl to contact Minerva McGonagall. Hermione listened from the bed where Harry had convinced her to rest just a little longer.

“You can’t, Harry,” the younger girl insisted in hard, emotionless voice. “You know as well as I do that she’ll never make you happy. You know we’re meant to be together. It’s hilarious that you two think you even have a chance to work. She’s brainwashed you in that damn tent, Harry. You need to get your head out of your ass before it’s too late!”

Hermione’s heart clenched. Part of her ached for her best girlfriend, she had never meant for this to happen. It had just…it just was. It had to be. She couldn’t breathe without him. She couldn’t imagine how Ginny was feeling. Hermione knew how in love with Harry the redhead had always been. The way she was speaking to him was odd, though. She was so cold and self-assured when anyone who knew her would expect her to be tearful and hurt. It was clear she had changed, and not for the better it seemed.

“Ginny.” Harry’s voice was soft and kind, she could hear them clearly through the wall that separated two bedrooms. “Ginny, I’m sorry. I never meant to hurt you like this. You still mean a great deal to me…I just. Everything has changed with Hermione, I feel like I can’t breathe without her.” Hermione’s heart leapt, and a tear trickled down her face when Harry echoed her inner thoughts of just moments before. “She’s carrying my child. Ginny.” Harry broke off on a choked sob of his own when Ginny let out an enraged, inarticulate scream. “Ginny, I’m sorry.”

“You’re sorry?” Ginny snarled. “Sorry. Ha. You’re not sorry, Harry Potter, but you’re sure going to be. Get out of my sight.”

Hermione tried to talk to her a couple of hours later; she tried to apologize. “Ginny,” she said softly, tapping on the door to the room the younger girl slept in. “Ginny, can we talk?”

Hermione took the silence as an okay to enter the room. She gave a little shriek as a hex missed her by mere inches. “Ginny!” she exclaimed, astonished.

“Get out! You…you…backstabbing whore!” Ginny bellowed at her. “You were supposed to be my friend!”

“I am, Ginny. I love you like a sister!” Hermione protested tearfully, deflecting another jinx.

“Sister? Oh please. News flash, Hermione. I don’t think I ever liked you,” Ginny snarled in a cold voice. “I was forced to be friends with you. Share my fucking room with you at the Burrow. Let’s admit that we simply tolerated each other while pretending we were friends. And if you are delusional enough to truly believe you ever loved me like a sister? Well, I think we can bury that ridiculous notion with my buffoon of a brother’s cold, dead body.”

“Ginny, please,” Hermione’s voice trembled with tears. “You’re saying these awful things because you feel betrayed and are hurt! It just happened – it wasn’t planned. We didn’t do it on purpose. We’ve been through so much and –”

“GET OUT!” Ginny screamed. “GO AWAY!” Hermione cried out in painful surprise when Ginny hit her with a shoving hex. She slammed into the hallway wall with force, knocking her head. Harry and Bill came running.

“I’ve got Hermione!” Harry yelled angrily. “You calm your sister down,” he demanded of Bill who quickly disarmed Ginny. “If you’ve hurt her, Ginny, I’ll never forgive you!” He pulled a trembling, tearful Hermione into his arms, allowing her to hide her face in his neck.

“I’ve got you, ‘Mione,” he murmured, pressing kisses into her hair. He pulled back and brushed hair from her face, blocking Ginny’s view with his back.

“We didn’t do this on purpose, Harry,” she whispered, barely coherent. “I didn’t mean to fall in love with you. I didn’t mean to hurt her, it just happened.”

“I know, love.” He pressed his lips to her temple. “Me, too. We can’t change what’s happened. We have to just keep pushing on. It’s okay.”

In the end, they had been able to contact Minerva McGonagall, who performed their binding, and the rest of the Weasleys made the trip from Auntie Muriel’s to witness the ceremony. Molly had been filled with saddened joy for them and she and Luna had helped Hermione tame her hair and transfigure a simple, cream colored gown. Luna wove a wreath of flowers to crown the curly-haired brunette.

“You make a beautiful bride, Hermione.” Luna hugged her tightly. “I’m very happy for you and Harry, you deserve the love you give each other.”

They gathered at sunset to say their vows with McGonagall, Luna, Dean, Mr. Ollivander, Mr. and Mrs. Weasley, Bill, Fleur, George, Fred, and Griphook. Ginny had refused to leave her room. They refused to let Ginny’s grief ruin their special day, however sad it made them. Hermione trembled with her happiness, her eyes bright with unshed tears.  Harry whispered that he loved her against her lips as they kissed, sealing their union. No one knew they would be leaving the next morning for Gringotts except for the goblin. Neither of them knew if the other would make it out alive – if either of them would.

They celebrated surreally with their friends until the late hours of the evening. The Weasleys staying with Auntie Muriel and Professor McGonagall left around ten, taking Luna, Dean, and Mr. Ollivander with them. Bill and Fleur retired to their bedroom just a little after. Harry and Hermione went back out to the beach and danced close in each other’s arms to the music of the waves and gulls. “I love you, Hermione Potter,” he smirked down at her and Hermione’s heart fluttered with pleasure, pulling herself closer to him.

“I love you, too, Harry Potter,” she smiled back at him. He gave her a little twirl and pulled her back to him with her back to his chest. Large, warm hands settled over the very slight swell of her abdomen.

Mrs. Weasley had been able to tell her she was about sixteen weeks along. After counting back, they realized she must have become pregnant that night in the Forest of Dean, when someone had sent them the Sword of Gryffindor. The first night they voiced their love for each other.

They made love before falling asleep in each other’s arms that night, knowing they were living in a stolen moment of peace and happiness.

Gringotts was a nightmare they just barely woke from. They lost Griphook and the sword. Hermione cried as she clung to the back of the dragon until Harry convinced her to let go, plunging them both into the freezing waters of a large lake.

What felt like minutes later, Harry was gasping. “He knows!” His voice sounded strange and low. “He knows and he’s going to check where the others are, and the last one,” he forced himself to his feet, reaching both hands for Hermione’s, “is at Hogwarts. I knew it. I knew it!” he cried as he pulled her up from the ground.


“I saw him find out about the cup, I – I was in his head, he’s” – Harry remembered the killings – “he’s seriously angry, and scared, too, he can’t understand how we knew, and now he’s going to check the others are safe, the ring first. He thinks the Hogwarts one is the safest, because Snape’s there, because it’ll be so hard not to be seen getting in, I think he’ll check that one last, but he could still be there within hours –”

“Where in Hogwarts?” Hermione demanded.

“I don’t know. He was concentrating on warning Snape, he didn’t think about exactly where it is –”

“Wait, wait!” Hermione cried. “We can’t just go, we haven’t got a plan, we need to –”

“We need to get going,” said Harry firmly. “Can you imagine what he’s going to do once he realizes the ring and the locket are gone? What if he moves the Hogwarts Horcrux, decides it isn’t safe enough?”

“But how are we going to get in?” Hermione was terrified, her entire body wracked with tremors. She started to cry. Harry pulled her into him tightly and whispered a charm over them to dry their clothing.

“Hogsmeade,” he said simply. She gave a curt nod. They fished clean clothing out of her beaded bag and changed.

They got into Hogsmeade, then the castle. The fighting was incredible, the giants and Acromantula were horrifying. So many died – Fred, Lavender Brown, Colin Creevey, Lupin, Tonks. They cornered Snape in the Shrieking Shack, after Voldemort left to seek out Draco Malfoy who he had just learned from their former Potion’s Master was the true wielder of the Elder Wand.

“Now, don’t be so rash,” Snape held both hands up, palms out. Neither Harry nor Hermione waivered in their stance, wands trained on their former Professor.

“Potter…I have some information for you,” Snape told him slowly. “From Dumbledore.”

Don’t speak his name. You don’t get to speak his name!” Harry growled.

“We planned his death, Potter. Albus and I – together. He was dying – a curse. You remember his arm?” Snape took a step back as Harry raised his hand, his defensive stance becoming more pronounced. “I am on your side, Potter. I swear on your mother’s grave.”

This gave Hermione pause, her eyes wide with Snape’s choice of words. Her mind grasped at an inkling. She had always trusted Snape, from day one. She knew Dumbledore had always trusted Snape. Him killing Dumbledore had been a major blow to her – it made her doubt her gut. His words were making her wonder if she had always been right. It had never made sense to her. Never.

“Why would you phrase it like that?” Hermione whispered, her wand lowering a fraction. Harry heard her tone and looked at her incredulously.

“What are you doing? Don’t let your guard down Hermione, he’s fooling us!” Harry insisted.

“I don’t think so, Harry.” She turned to her husband of just over twenty-four hours. “I think he’s telling the truth.”

Hermione saw Snape visibly relax, his hands lowered at the same time her wand did. Harry looked at her as if she had three heads like Fluffy.

“Tell me why, Professor Snape,” she requested softly. “Why do you swear on Lily Potter’s grave?”

Snape searched her eyes and he obviously found what he needed. “We were friends. We knew each other since we were nine years old. I…I loved her.”

Harry’s defensive stance drooped, and his wand dropped to his side as he staggered into Hermione in shock. “You loved my mum?”

“I did.” Snape’s voice was scratchy.

“Prove it.” Harry was obviously disbelieving. Hermione took his hand and squeezed it hard.

“What was your father’s Patronus, Potter?” Snape said as he slowly drew his wand, making it clear they were in no danger from him.

“A stag,” Harry replied automatically.

“And what was your mother’s?” their professor prompted.

“A doe…”

Both Harry and Hermione gasped when Snape cast his Patronus and a doe bound around the Shrieking Shack silently before dissipating in a cloud of iridescent vapors.

“That’s…that the Patronus I saw in the Forest of Dean,” Harry stuttered.

“Will you listen to me, now?” Snape asked softly.

Hermione gasped and all three covered her ears as the terrible voice of Lord Voldemort crashed into their eardrums. “You have fought valiantly. Yet you have sustained heavy losses. If you continue to resist me, you will all die, one by one. I do not wish this to happen. Every drop of magical blood spilled is a loss and a waste.

“Lord Voldemort is merciful. I command my forces to retreat immediately.

“You have one hour. Dispose of your dead with dignity. Treat your injured.

“I speak now, Harry Potter, directly to you. You have permitted your friends to die for you rather than face me yourself. I shall wait for one hour in the Forbidden Forest. If, at the end of that hour, you have not come to me, have not given yourself up, then battle recommences. This time, I shall enter the fray myself, Harry Potter, and I shall find you, and I shall punish every last man, woman, and child who has tried to conceal you from me. One hour.”

Hermione shook her head frantically, looking at Harry. “Promise me right now you will not go!” she demanded. “Promise me!”

“He cannot promise you that, Miss Granger.” Snape’s voice was deadly calm. “He must die tonight – he is a Horcrux.”

Harry’s eyes slid closed. For some reason, he was not surprised. A part of him had…had already known…had always known.

“No!” Hermione lashed out at her professor. “He cannot. He cannot die! He has to live!”

“Miss Granger –”

“I am not Miss Granger anymore!” she screamed at him, throwing her arms wide. “I am Hermione Potter!” Snape looked like he had been slapped. “He cannot die. He’s going to be a father!” She collapsed into Harry’s arms, hysterical. The sobs were ugly, filled with gut-wrenching anguish, and caused Harry’s heart to thud painfully in his ears.

“Hermione,” he murmured, carefully smoothing hair off her forehead before tracing the line of her brow with his lips. “Hermione, it’s going to be okay.”

“Promise me, Harry. Promise me,” she begged shamelessly. “I can’t do this alone, Harry. I can’t do this without you.”

Harry looked at Snape, his green eyes large and scared and devastated. “This is the only way? Please tell me there’s another way.”

“I’m sorry, Harry,” the other man said, genuinely expressing remorse. His eyes never left the sobbing girl in Harry’s arms. “If there was anything…” He trailed off.

“You’re going to have to take her,” Harry’s voice broke. He cleared his throat by swallowing hard.

Hermione became even more distraught and started pounding on his chest. “You promised you’d come back to me. You promised, Harry! How am I supposed to do this without you?” Harry grasped her head in his hands and pulled her forehead to rest against his.

“Hermione, look at me now.” His voice was hard, resigned. There was no trace of tears or fear. “I love you,” he said with complete conviction. “If there is anyway out of this, I will find it. I swear to you, I will find it!” She hiccupped as hot tears continued to cascade down her face. “You know that neither of us could ever live with ourselves if we walked away from this now.

“But promise me, Hermione. You must promise me that you’ll let Snape get you to safety. I will come for you if I can, I swear.”

“Harry…” she moaned, her face crumpling all over again. “I don’t want to do this without you.”

“Don’t say that! Hermione, please!” Harry was begging her. “Hermione, I can’t do this if I don’t know you’re safe. I won’t have the strength to do this if I don’t do it for you and the baby. Please, Hermione.” He kissed her then, fiercely and passionately. Neither noticed Snape subtly leave the room, closing the door tightly behind him, letting them say their goodbyes.

“Promise me,” Harry begged as he divested her of her jacket and shoved her jeans over her hips. They tangled together on a dusty couch frantically, not even fully undressing before she took him into her. “Promise me, promise me, promise me,” he begged between frantic kisses salted with her tears. When it was over, they clung to each other in silence for a long time.

“Promise me,” he said one final time.

“I promise,” she replied. Her voice was thick and resigned.

“You’ll stay safe, you’ll keep our child safe,” he pushed. She agreed numbly.

He helped her fix her clothing before fixing his own and pulling her out of the room to find Snape. Their professor was waiting for them in the furthest corner of the house. “If it goes wrong, get her out of here,” Harry demanded of a man he had despised for the last seven years of his life.

“You have my word.” Snape held out his hand for Hermione’s. She looked at it for a moment before launching herself back into Harry’s arms. Wrapping her up tightly, Harry buried his face in her hair.

“I know I’m usually stronger than this, Harry,” she whispered brokenly in his ear, “but I’m so scared. Please don’t go. This doesn’t have to be your destiny. Please, Harry.”

He held her as tightly as he could with one arm while running a hand through her tangled locks. “I love you, wife. I’m so glad I got to marry you and make you mine.” He kissed her forehead and forcibly removed her hands from his person, looking at Snape beseechingly.

“Harry!” The tears started in earnest again when she felt Snape’s strong arms pull her away from Harry, holding her with her arms pinned down just above her elbows. She scrambled for her wand to find it missing. Betrayed and hurt, she looked back to her husband only to find him running his fingers along her vine wand. “I will leave this in the other room. Hermione. I love you.” He was almost begging her to let him go. This was too hard, she was making it harder.

“Harry!” She begged, doubling over in Snape’s arms while lifting her feet from the floor, trying to pull away. He was too strong, and she was too tired – too hysterical.

“I love you, Hermione,” Harry said one final time. Then he was gone. She screamed after him until her voice gave out. She thrashed in Severus Snape’s arms until she was exhausted. Eventually, she collapsed against the man who had told her husband of less than forty-eight hours that he had to die. She sought comfort from the man who had changed her life irrevocably. She fell into a fitful, wearied sleep against the man who had told the father of her unborn child that he would never get to meet his son or daughter.

When Hermione woke, she was alone on a filthy rug. She looked around, disoriented, and reached for Harry before remembering what had happened. She sat up quickly, causing the room to spin dangerously. When she regained her equilibrium, she attempted to escape, to get back to the battle. Everything was tightly locked down. Panicking, she paced the small room.

A lifetime passed before Snape reappeared. She was hungry and thirsty and so, so tired. Snape looked awful – drained and haggard. It was the sadness in his eyes, however, that made Hermione moan with anguish as she sunk to her knees on the floor before she began to sob all over again. Heartache made her body trembled horrifically as she choked and gagged on her grief.

“He was incredible, Hermione.” Snape’s melodic baritone caressed the jagged edges of her broken soul when her shattered sorrow turned into dazed and quiet disbelief. “We won’t know what happened for sure, with him gone, but he didn’t die the first time Voldemort attempted to kill him. He came back – I don’t know how.” It was an answer to the question in her eyes that had broken through the detachment. “It wasn’t enough, though. In the end, Voldemort out-dueled him. Voldemort killed Draco – Voldemort has control of the Elder Wand.”

Hermione’s whimper made Snape’s face go soft. She had never seen her professor look at anyone with that kind of compassion. She felt like she was existing in an alternate dimension. He sat next to her on the floor and didn’t move away when she swayed tiredly into him, instead he pulled her close and stroked her hair.

“We have to get you somewhere safe, Miss Gra – Hermione.” He stumbled over her name, settling on her first name being she was no longer a Granger. “Out of the country, I think. You will be killed instantly if you are found. Muggle-born or not, you’re carrying Potter’s child. The Dark Lord will be threatened by that.”

“What about you?” It was the first thing Hermione had said since begging Harry to stay with her just hours before.

“I will survive,” Snape responded coolly. “You needn’t worry about me.”

“What about the others?”

“What others?”

“The Order?”

“Dead or captured,” Snape’s voice was bitter. “We must move, Hermione. Up you get.”

They made a series of Apparitions, finally stopping after at least a dozen different locations had passed.

“Where are we?” she asked, looking around. The town was unfamiliar.

“That last Apparation was from Dover, England to Calais, France. We are in France.” Snape handed her a wad of Muggle cash. “There is a branch of Gringotts in the magical district in Paris,” he told her. “You can get there by taking the tram from here to Lille, to St. Denis, then into Paris. Clear out your bank account, go to the America’s. Get lost in a big city. Don’t return without hearing from me. If it is ever safe for you to come home, I will find you.”

He paused for a moment before adding, “Hermione, don’t go to Australia.” When she looked startled and scared, he continued, “He will look for you there. There were rumors that’s where your parents went. If he finds them and you’re with them, you’re all dead. There’s a chance he’ll leave them be if you’re not there.” Hermione felt her eyes fill with tears again, she had just lost Harry and now she was losing her parents all over again.

“I understand,” she answered softly.

“Take this,” Snape pressed a small wad of Muggle bills into her hand along with a note. “When you’re somewhere safe, please write me via Muggle post and let me know where, the address is on the piece of paper.” After she took the money and parchment from him without a word, he settled his long-fingered hands on her shoulders. She felt so broken. His hands were warm and comforting and wet caramel eyes met and held sympathetic black. “I’m sorry, Hermione. For your loss – for our loss.” She gave another jerky nod, but didn’t trust herself to say anything. “Be safe.” He stepped back from her and, with a twist and a crack, she was left utterly and completely alone. Slowly, she sunk to the ground, wrapping her arms around her legs and setting her face against her knees.

Alone. All alone. Ron gone. Her parents unreachable. Harry…oh, Harry. Silent tears pooled against her grimy jeans.

Suddenly, there was a flutter low in her womb. Her breath hitched, startled. She sat up straight and covered the small swell of her belly, holding her breath. It was there again and felt like little, tiny butterflies low in her stomach.

She gasped, feeling a purpose wash over her – feeling hope for the first time in the last miserable day.

Not alone.

She had to flee. She had to survive.

She wasn’t alone.

*BOLD is taken from “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows”

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