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Chapter 12: The Calm Before the Storm

The next couple of months drifted by easily and somewhat more quickly than Hermione had hoped for. Draco and Hermione had moved many of their possessions into the wing that the women had made up for them in Bethany’s mansion (A/N: I forgot to mention that the Potter fortune did not only go to Harry--it was split to Bethany as well and now with Harry gone, Bethany has everything hence why she could afford a mansion at only 22 lol).

The woman of the D.O. (daughters of Osiris) had been gracious and welcoming to the couple just as if they were family. Occasionally it did bother Hermione however because many of the members had a tendency to try and wait on them hand and foot like servants but Hermione was always quick to put a stop to it.

It was now approaching December and Hermione was trying to excite herself with the holiday season. She was now almost five months pregnant and was beginning to show a little bulge in her belly. Draco was loving every moment of his fiancé’s pregnancy and was almost unbearable to Hermione with his constant touching and his incessant need to do everything for her. Hermione was also beginning to get a sense of cabin fever since she was rarely out of the mansion and when she was, she was always accompanied by Draco as well as one or two of the D.O. members. True, she had agreed to all this but in her mind all this over-protectiveness was starting to become a bit over extreme, especially since the past couple months had been almost completely uneventful.

Hermione was spending most of her days holed up in the mansion’s extensive library which was twice the size of her own at home and almost as large as the one at Hogwarts but contained many more volumes of certain topics that were more needed for the cause. There was an entire section devoted to Egypt and the Egyptian legends and myths. Hermione had started to pour through each and every single book in that entire section and, after two full months, she was still only barely half way through it.

So far, however, she hadn’t discovered very much that she didn’t already know considering she had been studying Egyptian history for the past five years. It didn’t matter to Hermione though, she was excited to read each book anyway. Draco thought that she was either really bored or just plain insane to re-read all the information that she pretty much already knew but oh well, at least she seemed happy and that’s all he wanted.

They had left the mansion a few times, either to go out for a day of shopping at Diagon Alley or to attend regular Order meetings or even once when Hermione dragged Draco to a muggle thing called a movie, but mostly the couple spent their days in the mansion. Draco was becoming more excited about his upcoming parenthood and wedding (which they had finally settled on having the next summer after the baby was born), especially now that Hermione’s pregnancy was beginning to show. He would watch her sift through book after book in the mansion’s library and was happy to see the smile on her face that had not been there for some time.

It was one cold day in November that Hermione found something during her research that caused her to burst into Bethany’s study, an ecstatic look on her face.

“Bethany!” Hermione hollered, bursting into the room, causing Bethany to jerk up from her paperwork at her desk, alarmed at the sudden interruption.

After Bethany had calmed her heart rate again, she looked curiously at her brother’s best friend. “Gods, Hermione. You scared the bloody hell out of me! What’s so important?”

Hermione shoved an open book onto the desk in front of Bethany. “Look! Right there.” She said, pointing to a paragraph on the open page. “It says that there’s another book out there, just as powerful as the Book of Ani. Only it’s said to be able to do just the opposite! It says here that this book contains an incantation that when recited by someone like me, it can strip the immortality and even the full life-force from a living being! This could be it, Bethany!”

Bethany read over the paragraph that Hermione was pointing to. Sure enough, there seemed to be another book of legend in Egypt that was simply called The Book of the Living. It said that if someone were to succeed in using the Book of the Dead to gain ‘immortality’, the said incantation could strip that immortality from said individual causing them to become completely mortal once again. Bethany did notice however that it appeared to have one simple problem.

“This is great Hermione! But did you happen to notice what it says here at the end?” She pointed it out to Hermione who looked at the passage and her face fell at the information. Apparently, the book had not been seen for nearly 500 years and no one had anything but speculation on the book’s possible whereabouts. Hermione tried not to let that discourage her though because if this was a way to finally defeat Voldemort once and for all then she would try her hardest to get to it. She decided that she would try to recruit the Order as well as the Daughters’ to help her on her newly decided mission. She left Bethany’s study and immediately rushed towards hers and Draco’s wing of the house looking for her fiancé.

“Draco!” She hollered when she reached the wing, not wanting to take the effort to actually look through the rooms for him.

She smiled brightly when she saw him come out of their daughter’s nursery (he had been adding new décor to it almost everyday for the past week). He rushed over to her and twirled her around, giving her a sweet and loving kiss.

“Guess what, Draco? We’re going to Egypt!” Hermione exclaimed excitedly.

“Huh? What do you mean? Why are we going to Egypt?” Draco asked curiously, somewhat confused.

“I mean just that. We’re, as in you an me, are going to Egypt. I mean you don’t have to go if you don’t want to but I’m going regardless of what anyone says.” Hermione answered, her smile never faltering, even though Draco looked at her sternly.

“Mia, you know you aren’t supposed to go anywhere unaccompanied. Why do you want to go to Egypt so badly? I mean I know you’ve always wanted to but why right now?” Draco said.

“Because I found something during my research and I’m going to investigate it. It could hold the key to ending this bloody mess with Voldemort and I’m going to do anything in my power to find it. So are you coming with me or not?” Hermione asked, pulling away from him and heading towards their bedroom not waiting for his answer.

“Oh come on Mia! Cant you just put all this ‘gotta save the world’ crap on hold for a few months? At least until our daughter is born!” Draco exclaimed catching up with her as she entered their room.

“No Draco I cant. We’ve been through this! I told you that I would do anything I could and this is something that I know I need to do.” She replied matter-of-factly.

“Dammit Hermione! Stop being so bloody stubborn!” Draco yelled at her out of frustration. He paused for a moment.

“You know, you’re as bad as Harry bloody Potter and you know what? You keep this up and you’re gonna end up just like him!” He hollered at her.

She stopped dead in her tracks and he immediately regretted what he said. That was the second time that he had used her best friend’s fate during an argument and he wasn’t sure how Hermione would react.

“Hermione, Mia, honey I’m sorry. I didn’t mean that.” Draco said quickly, hoping to cover his arse before Hermione could blow up at him. “It’s just that things have been going so well lately that it just surprised me that you’d want to do this now.”

Hermione turned on her heel and faced him, her honey eyes blazing with fire.

“You know something Draco? You’re absolutely right, I am as bad as Harry. I’ve accepted my life just as he did and, just like him, I knew my place and what I was supposed to do and am not afraid to do what needs to be done. So thank you, I consider that a compliment.” She said, her voice low and steady. “But so help me gods, if you ever bring Harry up in one of our arguments again, it will be the last thing you ever, and I mean, ever say to me. You got that?”

Draco just nodded solemnly. “I really am sorry Mia, it just came out. But seriously, I really am begging you to please just wait till after the baby’s born. I know I cant stop you from doing it but that’s all I ask. Please, if you’re gonna risk your own life I cant do anything about it but please don’t risk our daughter’s again as well.”

Draco stared down at her and took her small hands in his. As he stared deeply into her eyes, his ice blue ones burning deep into her soul, Hermione felt her knees grow weak like they used to when they first got together and she knew she could never stay mad at him.

“Alright, alright. But there’s only about four more months till then and then it begins, got it? Once she’s born, no more holding me back or trying to persuade me with guilt trips, okay?” Hermione said to him, not breaking their gaze once.

Draco smiled and leaned down towards her, so close she could feel his warm breath on her face, causing Hermione to smile as well. He looked into her eyes again, his stare filled with lust and love and she knew what was on his mind because it was the same thing on hers as well. They hadn’t been together like that in quite awhile, since they learned they were going to have a baby really. It was a shame, pitiful almost, especially considering before that they had made love at least three times a week if not more….guess it’s no wonder the couple got pregnant!

Draco’s lips suddenly crashed into hers, breaking her reverie and sending her into a swirling bliss almost as strong as the first time they’d kissed. The love was still there, the lust, the passion, the understanding…it was all present and accounted for. Their kiss deepened as she granted his tongue entrance into her mouth and they were suddenly battling for dominance, the passions igniting and swallowing them both whole.

Hermione took over control for a moment and started to lead Draco back towards the bed in their room, passionately stripping his clothes off of him hungrily while they moved with Draco doing the same to Hermione. Draco’s strong hands moved themselves expertly over Hermione’s soft arms and back. He suddenly switched their position and pushed Hermione lightly back onto the bed, climbing gently over her and smothering her with passionate kisses.

Draco’s hands swept over her soft skin gently and lovingly pausing at her tiny bulge in her abdomenom, completely entranced by the fact that there was a tiny life growing in there at that very moment--a life that was half his and half his beautiful mate’s.

Their subtle caresses became quicker and hungrier as they stripped the remaining clothing from each other’s bodies and clung to each other’s naked forms as if their lives depended on it. The kisses became feverish as Draco plunged himself deep inside her and Hermione screamed out in pleasure at uniting with her love again. They met each other in the throws of ecstasy over and over that night in each other’s arms, finally collapsing in the wee hours of the morning, completely exhausted and pleasantly numb.

“I love you Mia..” Draco murmured into her hair as the two cuddled tightly at the end of their escapade.

“I love you too Draco, don’t you ever forget that.” Hermione replied and allowed herself to fall into a deep sleep, snuggling into his warm embrace, his hand resting protectively and lovingly over her swelled stomach.

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