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Percy Weasley sat at his desk in front of the Minister’s office finishing up some paperwork.

Actually, he was stalling.

He knew that his father was working late and he didn’t want to chance being stuck on the lift with him. Now, you might be thinking ‘Why didn’t Percy just leave with the rest of the employees?’. Well, being the important *insert eye-roll* ministry official that he is, he had entirely to much work to leave at the end of the work day. So now he was stuck sitting at his desk, trying to be productive, until he was sure his father was gone.

And you may also be thinking ‘Why doesn’t Percy just apologize to his father and get it over with?’. The answer to that question is simple. Percy Weasley is a prick.

So, with all his paperwork checked, double checked, triple checked, and filed, Percy Weasley found himself with nothing to do and too spineless to accept his father’s company.

In an effort to seem important, which he wasn’t, he decided to go up to the mail room and see if there was anything there for the Minister.

He climbed the stairs and checked the Minister’s personal box. And it just so happened that he was about to go back down the stairs when an all to familiar owl swooped through the window and dropped a letter in Governor Radbaum’s personal box. The personal owl of Albus Dumbledore.

Of course, being the insufferable, self-righteous, know-it-all little prat that he is, he considered himself privy to whatever knowledge Professor Dumbledore had decided to impart upon the newest Governor. No doubt some ridiculous dribble about You-Know-Who being back.

Nikolle,

The Prophecy is nigh. Miss Granger and Mr. Malfoy are the benefactors. Surprising, no?

Sincerely,

Albus


Prophecy? Now what Prophecy could Dumbledore be talking about? Well, he could bring this information to the Minister as is, or he could do a bit of back research to impress him. The only question was how to gather information on an occurrence he was sure no one else in the ministry even knew was going on… Especially when it seemed to be centered around Hogwarts.

He glanced at the paper again. Granger? But surely it couldn’t be Hermione! He’d always thought she had potential and that once she got out of school and away from the deranged Potter boy she would see sense.

And the Malfoy boy? So he was at Hogwarts! The Malfoy Manor had been found in ruins and his mother’s death had been filed by an unknown person as a murder. Kingsley Shacklebolt had taken up the investigation which had only served to make the Minister even more suspicious. Lucius was still on the run, and it was reported that his brother’s son, Darius, and his wife, Nethika, and their young children, Darien and Blaze, had been found murdered in their home in Austria near the beginning of the summer. It had been unknown until that moment if Draco Malfoy was even still among the living,

But he was at Hogwarts! Which meant that Dumbledore was hiding a person of interest from the ministry!

Further more, what exactly were they the benefactors of?

He couldn’t just take this letter as proof, tampering with owl post was a federal offense. He’d be tried before the Wizengamot and spend at least a year in Azkaban!

So how was he to get the information he desired?

He of all people wouldn’t be trusted by the crack-pots residing at Hogwarts (you can be sure that at this point in time Percy Weasley was puffing his chest out with all the undeserved self-importance that he felt he was allotted as personal assistant to the Minister), he needed an informant on the inside. Someone who would do as he asked and not put to much thought into it. Someone known to act rashly and jump to conclusions. Someone he could manipulate easily with half-truths and ‘slipped’ tidbits of information.

Someone, like Ron. His half-wit, impulsive, reckless younger brother.

He knew from the annoyingly insistent letters his mother wrote him (which he never bothered to reply too, he was far to busy) that Ron had a rather persistent crush on Miss Granger. Even if he did go about showing his affection in a rather immature and misguided way.

Percy had a feeling that his dear younger brother wouldn’t be happy to hear that there was some connection between Miss Granger and Mr. Malfoy…






Ron snored loudly in his sleep.

A tapping at his window caused him to snort and flop over in bed, flinging his arm above his head in that careless way people move in the void of sleep.

His knuckles connected forcefully with the headboard and he howled in pain, sitting bolt upright and swearing.

“Shut up, Ron. Go back to sleep.” Seamus mumbled, shoving his head under his pillow.

“Shove off!” Ron shot back, massaging his injured hand.

“Ron, you bloody idiot, just shut up and go back to sleep!” Dean snapped, rolling over and yanking the hangings on his bed shut.

“Leave him be…” Harry muttered, half heartedly throwing a pillow at Dean’s now closed hangings.

“Yeah, s’not so bad, jus ignore’m…” Neville agreed, covering his yawn.

And so the other boys drifted back asleep. But Ron Weasley was both in pain from his hand and smarting from his friends half-meant sleepy comments.

He sat in his bed, rubbing his knuckles furiously and huffing with indignation, when he heard the tapping.

He remembered then that it was what had disturbed him in the first place.

Furious, he struggled out from under his duvet and wrenched the window open.

Hermes fluttered in the room.

Ron stared at the owl in amazement. He hadn’t seen that particular owl since his 4th year. It was his brother Percy’s owl.

Shocked, he fumbled at the letter tied to the owl’s leg.

He broke the official looking ministry seal and pulled out the heavy parchment inside,

Ronald,

I have some information that you may be interested in. Your friend Hermione Granger has been named the benefactor of an estate of some sort. That in itself isn’t so unusual, except for the fact that she’s been named benefactor with Draco Malfoy. Mr. Malfoy is currently wanted by the Ministry of Magic for questioning about the destruction of his home this summer and the suspected murder of his mother, Narcissa Malfoy.

It has been concluded that if Miss Granger is being named the benefactor of an estate with him, she must know where he’s residing at the moment. The Ministry is considering taking action against Miss Granger. I thought that as a close friend of hers you could get to her first and talk some sense into the young woman.

If you would, please speak with Hermione then write me back with any information you may have gathered. It may help us put the Malfoy Heir behind bars before he can aid his father in He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named’s evil deeds.

Sincerely

Your Brother, Percy 


Ron stared at the letter in complete confusion.

Hermione was taking of an estate with Malfoy? Didn’t that sort of thing only happen to, like, married people?

Ron’s heart stopped in his chest. HERMIONE MARRIED MALFOY!!

Now, this may seem like a horrible conclusion to jump to, but it was the only thing that made since to his sleep boggled mind.

Ron jumped from the bed, and threw on his house coat. He tossed the letter in his bedside drawer as he shoved his feet into his slippers.

It didn’t occur to him that it was close to 3:00am, or that Hermione and Draco were supposedly away on a trip representing the school at some sort of convention and had been gone for the past three days.

In fact, in his mind that just made it seem even more likely that they got married and were holed up in their room on some sort of sick honeymoon.

As a Prefect, he had access to the Head Dormitory for emergencies.

He ran through the corridors like a bat out of hell, not caring a bit if he attracted the attention of Mrs. Norris, Filch, Peeves, or any other frightening official in the castle.

He careened to a stop in front of the portrait of Hildegard the Hog-Faced and sputtered the password.

A look of dismay flashed across her face and she tried to protest but it did no good, he had the password and she had to let him in.

He burst into the Common Room and was paused momentarily by the grandeur around him.

His pause was shattered by something that made his blood run cold.

The sound of a baby crying.

In a daze he walked climbed the stairs and followed the sound to a door marked with a gold plaque that winked in the light and bore Hermione’s name.

He gripped the doorknob in his shaking hand and turned.

The door swung open and he stared at the sight before him. Hermione, her hair and closed rumbled by sleep, with a baby in her arms and a bottle to it’s tiny lips.

Hermione didn’t look up, but she spoke.

“It’s okay, Draco. I’ve told you one million times you don’t have to run in here every time she whimpers in the night. I’m not going to let our daughter starve.”

“Her… Hermione?” Ron’s voice came out in a strangled gasp. Hermione’s head shot up and her eyes grew wide.

“R-Ronald!” Her voice was louder then she intended and in her anxiety she pulled the bottle away from Cammie’s lips. The child resumed her wailing, but with more gusto now that her dinner had been taken away from her.

Hermione hastily placed the bottle back between her lips, never taking her eyes from Ron’s furious blue ones.

“I WAS RIGHT!” He roared, “YOU DID MARRY MALFOY!”

Hermione’s jaw hit the floor.

“What in the world gave you that idea, and stop shouting, you’re startling Cambria.” Her sharp tone stopped him in his tracks and reminded him that it was still Hermione, the girl he had known since he was eleven. The girl he was in love with.

The girl who had somehow been pregnant with Draco Malfoy’s baby and had given birth without him ever knowing!

“How…” He moved to take a step into the room when a strong hand gripped his shoulder. He turned to see Draco Malfoy holding him in check. Ron’s lips curled back in a derisive sneer, but Draco just stepped past him. He walked into the room and took the baby from Hermione’s arms, lounging back in the bed and continuing the feeding as if nothing out of the ordinary was going on.

Hermione stood up and motioned for Ron to follow her out of the room.

Ron stood rooted in place and stared at his childhood enemy feeding an infant on his best friends bed.

“Ron…” Hermione said softly.

He turned mechanically, and followed her down the stairs into the Common Room.

She sat on a couch and patted the cushion next to her. Instead, he sat on the couch across from her.

“Ron,” She asked, her face impassive. “What are you doing here?”

“I-I got a letter that you and Malfoy…”

“You got a letter about Cambria?” Hermione cut across him sharply, her eyes narrowing in anger.

“No, I got a letter that you and Malfoy had… inherited an estate together.” Saying it now made him realize that it didn’t sound as serious as he first believed.

Hermione sighed and ran a hand through the heavy mass of her hair.

“As in a piece of property?” She said, her honeyed gaze pierced his own blue.

“That’s what I assumed it to mean.” Ron mumbled.

“And did this letter also tell you that Draco and myself were… married?” She looked at him curiously.

“No. But I thought only married people could inherit property together…”

“We’re not married, Ron.” Hermione said, hoping to calm his frayed nerves some.

“But you have a baby! I heard you say it, it’s your baby and it’s his baby!” Ron’s eyes were taking on his wild, panicked glaze again

“Ron, it’s not what you think.” Hermione said calmly.

“Not what I think?” Ron laughed hysterically, “Hermione, you had a baby! It’s exactly what I think. How could you shag Malfoy? When did you shag Malfoy?!” He did the math quickly in his head. “March… last March! But… how did you hide it? You’ve been pregnant this whole time? I mean, you had to have been 7 months pregnant when term started. Did you use a Glamour Charm? Did you-”

“Ron, shut up.” Hermione’s gaze had turned deadly. “Don’t make assumptions. I never shagged Draco. You of all people should know that I plan to save myself for the man I intend to marry.” She tossed her head and fixed him with a hateful stare.

“Oh, so now you’re going to give me some immaculate conception crap? Are you suddenly the Virgin Mary reborn? Is that Jesus up there with a bottle in his mouth?” Ron’s breath was coming ragged, the hysteria making it hard for him to breath.

“Ron, will you just listen! I -”

“He walked in your room half naked and you didn’t even blink!” Ron squeaked.

“Oh please, Ronald! He was wearing sweatpants. I’ve seen you, Harry, all your brothers, and half the boys in Gryffindor House in less at your ridiculous swim parties in the Lake!” She laughed derisively. “Now will you shut up and LISTEN!”

He stared at her, then made some sort of unintelligible sound with a vague hand gesture,

“The Iuncito Venenum Potion Professor Snape assigned us, you remember?” Hermione asked. He nodded slowly. “Something went wrong… it bound our blood instead of our souls. It was a freak occurrence, but it created that baby. Her name is Cambria. She fulfills a prophecy that’s important to the fate of the Wizarding World. I was not pregnant, I didn’t give birth, and I most definitely did not have any sort of physical relationship with Draco.”

Ron stared at her, then shook his head slowly. “You’re crazy… You’re crazy if you think I’m going to believe that!”

“Ron, I’m serious!” She recited the Prophecy for him, and explained to him that Dumbledore was involved. That, above all else seemed to convince him.

“Dumbledore knows?” He asked, wide-eyed.

“Of course he does, I couldn’t have gotten through the last three days without all the help he’s given us.” Hermione smiled slightly.

“So… if this baby is so important why don’t you hand her over to the Order?” Ron asked.

“She’s a child!” Hermione shook her head, “How would you feel if your mother abandoned you because she was fearful of your destiny?”

Ron nodded slowly, “But… Malfoy’s a Deatheater…”

“Actually, no. He works for the Order, his father murdered his mother.” She took a deep breath to repress a shudder . “He’s been working with the Order ever since.”

“The letter mention that his mother was murdered…” Ron whispered.

“What?” Hermione’s voice was suddenly sharp again, “What did it say?”

“Oh! It said that Malfoy was wanted for questioning by the Ministry for the murder of his mother and that I should come talk to you because you were named as a benefactor of some estate with him and they think you know where he is.” Ron screwed his face up, trying to remember.

“He’s wanted by the ministry? Who sent you this letter?” Hermione asked.

“Percy.”

“Your brother?” Hermione asked, amazed. Ron nodded. “Ron, you can’t tell him anything. Voldemort can’t find out about the Prophecy!” She gripped his hand in fear.

“Okay, okay!” Ron said, not quite meeting her eyes. “Hermione… I should go… We have classes in the morning.”

“Tomorrow’s Saturday…” Hermione said, looking at him curiously.

“Err- well, Lavender and I have to study for that History of Magic test…”

“You’re seeing Lavender then?” Hermione asked, sniffing in disapproval.

“No! No- uh, well that is to say, we’re not dating …” He stammered.

“Oh just go, Ronald!” Hermione smiled at him, “I need to go relieve Draco anyways.”

“Yeah… See ya, `Mione.” He turned to leave.

“Oh, and Ron, please don’t tell anyone. Not Harry, not Ginny, no one. Please.”

“Yeah, yeah. I won’t” He shrugged it off and left the Head Dormitory, sneaking through the castle did nothing to stop his brain from racing uncontrollably.

He made it back to his dorm and crawled into bed.

Three hours later, sleep still evaded him.

He left his bed and went to the Common Room.

Where he penned the letter that would change the lives of Hermione Granger and Draco Malfoy forever.

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