Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter or any of the character's of JKR's ingenious world!
And so um, sorry about the incredibly long absence? My bad!
The October Hollow
Or Why I Have to Scream
Tuesday, October 27
She knew how it went now.
She knew how to fight.
All was not lost.
Ron was who she needed to imagine she was kissing, Ron when he hadn't cheated on her, when he treasured her more than his brand new broomstick, more than 50 galleons, more than life itself… not nearly as much as she cherished him, though.
If Hermione wanted to win, she needed a change of tact; Malfoy said desire drove her, but Hermione was going to counter with love, something she knew the Slytherin hadn't experienced before. If she could just pretend, from now on, that Malfoy was not above her, but that it was Ron, sweet, comical Ron, laughing, grinning, freckled and beautiful…
Eyes slid closed and Hermione found herself basking in the image of Ron. She could picture the red hair, the permanent smell of butter beer and firewood. His freckles, the infinite number that could look as if Ron had a tan, overwhelmed her mind for a moment. And his kind features; his smile... his smile that looked more like a smirk... a smirk...?
But there was something wrong. His eyes... they weren't the deep, lost blue Hermione loved. They were very light… gray almost... so gray in fact... they were silver...
It couldn't be happening, it just couldn't.
Who was she picturing in her mind?
Ron Weasley, or Draco Malfoy?
The unexpected combination of Ron and Malfoy sent her reeling into a vertigo of confusion; how could she be seeing them both at once? The thought that somehow head or heart confused one soul with another terrified her; consciously she aware that this white-haired earth devil was here torturing her, and the fiery red-head was somewhere else, somewhere safe. They was no mistaking one with the other... but then how did she? And what did it mean?
Any moral, any meaning, any sort of motivation to shame everything that defined Malfoy went spinning from her mental grasp; she was lost in the sea of darkness that had been slowly drowning her since the stay in this hollowed out hell. Hermione believed that picturing Ron would've given her an advantage because Malfoy had never felt such a thing, but instead of feeling incredibly wrong everything with Malfoy just felt right. She had no idea what was happening to her anymore.
Hermione hated how this devastating realization was forcing her to lose; it was panic and squirm at the thought of holding the thought of Malfoy dearly, or get over it and defeat him before anything else could be established.
The forced decision came in a moment; she tried not to focus on the thought of Ron that kept eroding into Malfoy's sharp face, but instead attempted to focus on the physical feel. She could taste Malfoy just as distinctly as Ron; she could touch him just as tenderly as Ron. She could put herself next to Ron as long as she didn't think she was with him. Worshiping a nameless god was simpler than fighting over a particular one, after all.
Fingers hard against skin, nails piercing into his scalp, Hermione knew the only way to conquer not only her own feelings but Malfoy also was to act as if he was Ron. But I cannot picture myself with him. I am not with him. I am alone. This is just a-- a dream, Hermione's mind reminded her; a very terrible dream.
Arms slipping around her waist, holding onto Hermione possessively was something Ron never did. The deviation of how Ron (not Ron, not Ron) was supposed to act shoved her off course for a moment. But she could pretend, she had to pretend. Every inch of her skin arched against his, tongue penetrating mouth, stealing what she wanted, what she needed. The desire, the lingering triumph that her tongue sought after was the right brand of heroin, the only kind that would pull her ahead.
Goosebumps erupted in silent patterns on his taut shoulder as her fingertips traced circles, and she felt victorious, proud that she could make his body feel. Her hand slipped down his back, encouraged the primal urges of his pelvic movements, and greedily lingered on his rippling muscles (Muscles that do not belong to Ronald, muscles that do not belong to Malfoy, the chant continued). The moan from the depth of his throat brought a slight smile to her lips; it was every intention of Malfoy's to make her want him, but now, he wanted her.
She was winning.
But her glory was short lived, because it seemed as if Malfoy had caught himself red-handed for giving into his desire, and in a quick movement gently planted kisses across her jaw and her neck, tracing deep circles under her ear with his tongue. Body on fire, Hermione couldn't restrain the responsive moan, the arch of her torso to his. More more more that she wasn't supposed to have but wanted; the touch, the feel, the kiss, the everything she wasn't allowed to have as everything gathered in an anxiously wonderful ball beneath her belly.
Malfoy's hand slowly worked their way down her exposed body to her skirt, tugging it slowly from her waist and down her legs, caressing the barely touched skin of her thighs, paying exceedingly close attention to what was always ignored. Because of this, Hermione had never felt so unsure of herself, torn in between loyalty and lust, logic and desire, right and wrong. Everything that was wrong just felt so good, a sin of the flesh she wasn't sure she wanted to be absolved of.
Clothes were shed, and the heated panting intensified, both of them caught up in the fire, both of them needing, wanting, taking, feeling what they shouldn't have been. Robes hastily tossed on the floor, skirt kicked away with an annoyed flick of her ankle, they pulled each other closer, mouths locked, hands intertwined in hair, body and heart swelling with much, much more than desire...
Trying to be this martyr, this fearless soldier, was too hard. All of a sudden, Hermione just gave up. She didn't care that it was Draco Malfoy, she didn't care that she had long since given up pretending it was Ron, and she didn't care that dangerously tender feelings for this arrogant Slytherin had slithered their way into her heart. And nothing was so obvious than her vulnerability, but even as that thought crossed her mind, she didn't care. Hermione wanted more of him, all of him; wanted never to leave him and wanted to always be there so she could feel this, this passion, this heat, this want, this love.
And as the thought had entered her mind, within moments it collided head on with her rationality, thrusting all desire out of her mind. Love and Draco Malfoy had just been associated willingly in her own mind. She ripped her mind out of the pleasured delirium that Malfoy had twisted around her, and rushed through what was happening. She was clutching his head to her neck, digging her fingernail gently into his scalp as she encouraged the delightful kisses on her neck. She was aware of her panting, her body beaded in perspiration and the quench for desire. His hands were placed suggestively on the naked skin of her breast, and the heat of her panties. Disgust poured over her as if the heavens had opened and rained mercilessly upon her.
But then, as soon as her self hatred had set in, Malfoy's lower hand began to work its magic, fingers moving so adroitly that she could do nothing else but choke on the crave for more that dried up her throat. Desire overcame her within moments and she forgot about everything that ever meant anything to her... except for this moment, and except for him.
What seemed ages later, Draco pulled away from the girl beneath him and caught his breath, looking down to her at the same time. Hermione seemed to share the same physical attributes at the moment; sweaty, bare, heaving and gasping for breath, chests rising and falling rapidly. Her exposure was a sort of victory for him, because she didn't care that her modesty had been forgotten. Her brown eyes were filled with defiance, yes, but at the same time clouded in lust, ready to pounce again just to fulfill her needs by using him.
In a fluid movement he pulled off his sweaty shirt, revealing the defined chest and arms that resembled that of a Greek god. With sly but arousing smirk, he slowly leaned down on top of her, and found his movement encouraged by the unusual behavior of Hermione Granger.
They kissing started immediately again. He ran his hands slowly over the curves of her body, letting her body tremble under his touch before he ran his hands through her hair. She arched her back as his hand rested on her thigh, gravitating slowly towards the juncture of her legs. Smirking against her skin as he listened to her suppressed pleasured noises, Malfoy took the small, delicate hands from his shoulders and guided Hermione's downward over his taut, sculpted body. Willingly obliging, Hermione's hands drank in the seductive skin, too caught up in the cloud of lust to realize what Malfoy was doing until her fingers found themselves winding through thick, short hair that could really only be found on one place of Malfoy's body.
“Malfoy, what are you--” Her concern for her hand was silenced as Malfoy slammed his mouth back onto hers. Noises of protest rose from her throat as she tried to wrench her tongue away from him.
Malfoy laced his fingers through hers and forced open her palm; her hammering heart seemed to drown out all of her other senses, and she could only feel the terrifying panic that was now gushing through her veins. Malfoy smiled against her skin as a stunned gurgle rose from her throat when he gentle enclosed her fingers around him.
This new sensation snapped Hermione back to attention; never had she felt this kind of heat, this kind of desire driven pulse, and with each throb that went through her fingers she was shoved towards rationalization, towards reality, towards control.
“Good girl, Granger,” Malfoy murmured against her neck, squeezing his hand harder around his; Hermione twitched underneath him and tried to muster up all the functional courage in her body.
“S-stop it,” she finally managed to whimper, and even that crushed all the energy she had, for now all she could do was tremble under Malfoy's control; a slow chuckle escaped his throat as he continued to have his way with her hand.
She was terrified, but nothing could escape her. Everything was quivering inside of her like fire, churning uncomfortably and waiting to burst and scamper away. Squeezing her eyes shut, Hermione tried to capture all the surging fear inside of her to push herself forward, to take control; it built and it bubbled horribly in her stomach, squirming like a snake, tearing away at her insides and ripping her apart.
And then, it combusted, and uncontrolled anger rushed through her, searing at her fingers and skin and throat. It sped through her, burning up her veins, boiling her blood, and the scream that echoed through the air was not her own but Malfoy's, a surprised pain that kept slipping from within him.
The painful fire that overtook Hermione's body slowed to a throb, and a new sort of fear crept into her lungs as she realized that had bit Malfoy's shoulder in an attempt to get away from him. His shoulder was ripped open, as if by a werewolf, blood dripping in rivulets down his sweaty chest.
Malfoy's shock echoed Hermione's, for it was apparent that neither of them had expected something so violent to derive from her. Malfoy touched the blood slowly, cautiously, as if it were acid. Hermione's heart pounded in her throat when it was clear his surprise turned to fury.
The fire in his eyes was more intense than any sort of fire she had in her body, and she could only flinch beneath his vicious gaze before she was flinching as his fingers enclosed around her throat and her back was slammed against the wall.
“Do you think that was funny, mudblood?” he snarled. “Was biting me a smart idea to you? Huh?”
There was no time for a response, only a weak cry of fear as he flung her body back to the ground; she huddled and tried to control the jagged breathing that accompanied the flood of tears, but it was no use. Malfoy grabbed at her legs and snatched at her skirt.
“Is this funny? Is it?” he spat at her, ignoring her screams of protest as he flung her skirt aside and started grabbing at her shirt. “Still going to bite me? Well?!”
Teared clothing fluttered in the air like snow as desperate sobbing bounced off the walls of her earthy prison; Malfoy pried everything from her body before he flung her away in disgust.
Hermione cradled her naked body in the corner, praying he would leave her be. He inched towards her, a hungry wolf to a helpless lamb, and she whimpered. “How would you like it,” Malfoy started in a slow, dark voice, “if I took something very precious from you?”
“P-Please don't!” she cried out hoarsely; Malfoy's face twisted furiously, unpleasantly, a lip curled in hatred.
“What if,” he spat, “you could never ever get it back?” He made a sudden lunge for her, stopping just sort of her bruised body. Pressing her forehead into her knees, she could do nothing but cry as he took a fistful of hair and yanked her eyes up to meet his. Only a sliver of a second passed before her brown eyes were pressed shut.
“Look at me,” he growled, and when she disobeyed him, he roared at her. “NOW!”
Meek brown cowered beneath silver fire, and his eyes narrowed to slivers. “I could ruin you in a moment, Granger,” he whispered slowly. “I could rip you in half.”
Her lip trembled; “Please, no,” she uttered. “P-Please.”
With her plead, he snatched up her arm, hoisting her from her balled position and tossed her as easily as a rag doll back to the lump of cloth that could barely be called a bed. She had no time to preserve her modesty, she had no time to scramble away, because Malfoy had her pinned in a second.
Regarding her heaving sobs apathetically, he glared down at her, and she could nothing. White blonde shards of his hair fell before his eyes as he leaned down to her face, hovering over her eyes. Blood from his shoulder dripped in a crimson pool on her, but she was frozen beneath him despite it.
“I will ruin you someday,” he whispered, eyes narrowed. “I promise.”
And then, Malfoy gently kissed her chapped mouth, released her body, and left without a second glance at her.
Nothing in this world seemed real to her anymore; not the shredded clothes that she tried to put back on her body, not the cuts and bruises Malfoy was constantly inducing upon her, nor the tears that fell from her eyes.
Wednesday, October 28
Hermione awoke the next day by the stinging pangs of hunger, and their relentlessness kept her awake.
The memories of the previous day haunted her mind, the image of Malfoy hovering over her, the way he pressed his body into hers.
She hated it, but it was the right kind of heroine that she could never wean herself off of. Her body craved his; she wanted to feel him, wanted to taste him, smell him, touch him, hold him. This sick desire for the devil was ruining her, shredding her logic and loyalty and she hated how she wasn’t stopping it, hated how she wasn’t fighting him like she used to.
He was taking over her.
Too soon to her liking, dusk started to fall. Her solitude was now a burden, and Draco’s absence was just as tangible as the hunger in her stomach. She was anxious for his return, even if he had terrified her the previous day. That terror, that fear, drew her closer, because she knew his gentle moments amounted to more than anything else.
Sooner than she expected, heavy footsteps echoed off of the dirt hallways outside her prison room and she found herself hoping for someone that she shouldn’t have. The door swung open, and her heart hammered against her chest once more.
It was Troy.
He was wearing a thick black cloak accented by jade robes underneath. He was carrying a paper bag like Draco had the day before; he smiled and tossed it to her, but Hermione made no move to snatch it out of the air.
“Why are you here?” Hermione blurted before she could stop herself. Quirking an eyebrow at her, Troy smirked.
“Eager to see Draco?” Troy suggested slyly.
“No, I am not eager to see Draco,” Hermione answered with a sneer. “I was just asking out of curiosity.”
"No worries Granger, I won't tell Draco you miss him," Troy said with a dramatic sigh.
"But where is he, really?" Hermione persisted.
"He had to go back to Hogwarts," he answered with a heavy sigh, shrugging at her gape. "The Ministry has been accusing him of kidnapping you, and Uncle Lucius and my father have been doing everything they could to put an end to it. Well yesterday, they showed up at the Manor and no one was home. The Ministry made a huge fuss over that and Draco got accused and all that jazz. He had to go to a full trial with all the Wizengamot and all that stupid rubbish last night when he left here.”
“And?” Hermione breathed.
“And he got off, but only just. So now Lucius and my father said it was best if Draco returned to school because then it seems as if he isn't participating in anything illegal. So, since hardly anyone knows me, I'm here to watch you for a while since Draco had his fun and now he's back in school."
Devastation hit Hermione like a truck at full speed. He had everything she wanted, he was everything she wanted, and now he was gone. All of it was gone. He was a tangible reminder that Hogwarts was still there, that students still existed, that maybe she could still escape because he managed to escape anytime he wanted to.
It wasn't fair. It just wasn't fair.
"You miss him, don't you?” Troy murmured. Hermione looked him square in the eye and simply nodded.
“I'm such a fool,” she whispered. Cupping her face in her hands, angry tears welled up in her eyes. “I fell for all of it. For him, for all of his lies, for the thought that maybe he could get me out of here.”
“That's the truth, Granger. Congratulations,” Troy said quietly. "Once a Malfoy, always a Malfoy."
"And you can't trust the lot of them!" she cried angrily, wiping furious tears from her cheeks.
Troy started to speak slowly, almost cautiously. “I'm going to tell you everything he wouldn't. He fed you lies and you ate them like a starving animal, Granger.”
“Don't remind me,” she muttered.
"Everything you asked him about the Lumerous Witch, the thirteenth house, everything... he knew all the answers. You were too naive to not think twice about it." The pity in his voice was overwhelmingly evident, and Hermione hated herself for it.
“Somehow, I trusted him,” she whispered to herself.
Saying it aloud made the betrayal even worse; it was true, but only because she had no one else to hold onto it. It was trust his lies or go insane. Hermione couldn't decide now which one was worse.
Answers that she hadn't received before poured from Troy's mouth, and bitterly she listened.
“... Lumerous Witch is born, obviously, when the planets are aligned. When that happens another time in history, that witch can do a number of extraordinary things," Troy explained. “Anything that has to do with light, in one form or another, can be done.”
Musing about that, Hermione asked slowly, “So, I can manipulate forms of light?”
“I guess,” Troy answered. “Lots of thing derive from light. Heat, fire, magic, even more.”
“What about impurity? Is it as obvious as it seems?”
“Essentially. You're as pure as they get,” Troy said, then smirked. “Well not anymore, I guess. Still a virgin though, that's all that counts.” Hermione groaned in frustration, while he continued on. “There was something about that journal that mentioned Artemis--”
“She was a Greek Goddess that rewarded chastity,” Hermione mumbled.
“Yes, and that was why that other Lumerous witch died, because she shagged someone. It's a bit hard, isn't it? I mean, not being able to get any."
“Ugh! I wouldn't be in this mess if I had just given in to Ron in the first place!” cried Hermione angrily. “Just my luck.”
“Anyway, the Thirteenth House is located in the center of the earth, almost like Hell but not quite. The other twelve houses are located on the surface of the earth, designated by how the sun rises or something like that,” he informed her.
“It's attributes?” Hermione demanded.
“Erm, it hosts subconscious emotions, pain of all sorts and varieties, and the extremities of your emotions.”
“... Lies, torture, and death, I think?” he replied uncertainly, ticking off his fingers as he listed the attributes. “Its The House of Magical Emotions because it is said that Magic comes from the earth, you know, and can obviously induce feelings you can't get anywhere else. Hecate rules the House. But for what reason I cannot tell you.”
After a moment of thinking about the astrological knowledge that had been quenched, she noticed her hands. Like the ring around her body below her neck, the wound has slowly healed into something like a burn scar. It was shiny and very smooth, more than her normal skin, and it blended exceptionally well. She lifted a palm to Troy.
“And these?” she asked quietly.
"The only information I am not allowed to release," he said with a sympathetic smile. She sighed dejectedly but nodded.
"Why me?" she whispered, looking up at him with sad eyes. He stared back at her silently. "I never wanted any of this.”
The realization that her life was now condemned, and there was no chance of release sudden swallowed her whole: there was no escape, there was no help, and there was no hope. Her helplessness was the only part of her that she could control, because Malfoy, this sullen prison, and the Dark Lord controlled everything else. Hermione no longer owned herself; she was a slave, and she knew it.
"When is this all going to end?" she sobbed desperately, saline dripping down her cheeks in a steady flow. He smiled sadly at her.
"I promise you, it will end soon enough."
Author's Note: Like my friends says, I had a Satan moment. This wasn't a cliffhanger, but I think there's enough of suspense in this chapter. Especially with this chapter! If you think I should up the rating, TELL ME.
A thanks and a scowl to Dylan for encouraging me to continue writing this, but for distracting me in the meantime.
I'm so sorry about the hiatus! Please keep reading and reviewing!
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