A/N2: If it was not clear, Hermione’s parents were under the Imperius Curse.
Harry Potter and The Acts of Betrayal
Chapter Four – The Odds of Recovery
July 31th 1997.
Happy 17th birthday to me.
I sat on the floor in the dim wand light. If anyone else had told me this story, I’d be finding them a mind healer.
But this is Hermione.
It was insane. Why would Dumbledore do this? Why would Ron and Ginny?
Just the thought of her filled my mind with sweet images. The line of her jaw, her delicate features, the dusting of freckles that drove me insane when she…
The Ginny who did that was my dream Ginny. Was Tonks. Tonks came to my bed and…
Anger bloomed. She came to my bed and pretended to be someone else. I had thought she was a dream, but I still felt guilty for cheating on Ginny.
Who had dosed me with a potion.
Who had used me.
Who had conspired with Dumbledore and Ron to break Hermione and me up.
I pulled myself out of my funk when I heard Hermione sobbing.
I hesitated. Should I do anything? Would she welcome my touch? She was violated far more than I. Ron Weasley was going to die for what he had done to her.
I knelt in front of her, and spread my arms looking into her eyes. She came to me, and clung to me like she was lost at sea and I was the only life vest. I would protect her with all I had. We needed to get this potion out of our bodies. We had to get the Weasleys out of our minds.
Damn them all to hell.
Hermione stirred. Slowly waking she was surprised to find herself alone. Where is Ron? Then the memories of the previous day flooded back.
Where is Harry?
She heard foot steps coming up the stairs. There was a knock at the door.
“Hermione? Just me. Can I come in?”
“Oh thank god. Come in here.” He entered carrying a canvas bag.
“I found this shopping bag in the kitchen. There’s no electricity, but the water is still on. It’s cold but you can get a shower if you want it. I made a trip to the market and got a few things. I only had ₤18 on me, but it’s a start.”
He emptied the bag, a box of prepackaged pastries and several bottles of water. He noticed her look. “I figured we needed to flush the potions out of our bodies, enough water should do it.”
She felt stupid. She had been planning to attempt to brew a highly complicated purging potion, when all they really needed to do was drink a lot of water over several days. Harry was so unassuming it was easy to forget just how smart he was.
She kissed him on the cheek and excused herself to the bathroom. The water in the shower WAS cold, but the Linen closet still had clean (if dusty) towels. Ignoring the top towel she took two of those under it (and fairly dust free) one she used to make a wrap for her hair the other she wrapped about her body.
She returned to the bedroom, and heard his gasp. Then smiled when she saw that he was averting his eyes. “You can look at me Harry. I’ve got a lot more on than I would at the beach.”
“I’ve never been to the beach.”
“Harry.” She hugged him. “We need to make some plans.”
“I was figuring I’d try to make it to Gringotts to get some cash. I know that there’s a chance I’ll get caught, but what choice do we have.”
“Actually, we don’t need to do that. Remember last summer you gave me access to your vault? I’ve been stashing cash in four different banks and have caches of galleons. I was preparing for if we couldn’t go to Diagon Alley, and well, now we can’t...”
“That’s ingenious. Why didn’t I ever think of that? How much do we have stashed? “
“Almost ₤30,000 and 5,000 Galleons.”
“Ok. Wow. What would I do without you to look out for me?”
“Ok, we need to stop owls from finding us. When Sirius was hiding at Grimauld place, I saw Dumbledore cast this one: velieris ex avis.” Harry glowed with a orange light for a second. “Ok, now you do me.”
“Why, Miss Granger, I’m not that kind of man!”
“Hardy Har Har. Do it.”
“velieris ex avis” Hermione also glowed for a second.
“Good. Now we need a better place to stay.”
“We’ve got to go Muggle. If we’re going to be safe, I’d suggest a hotel for a couple of days, then get out of the country, Canada, the States, Australia or New Zealand since I only speak English.” He looked thoughtful. “And we’ve got to get your parents.”
“They’re controlled Harry.”
“Doesn’t matter, they’re your parents.
Marcy Duncan had been the receptionist at Granger’s Dental Surgery since the day it opened, 19 years before. She had seen patients dragged in by relatives, she had seen patients who had done damage to themselves seeking pain meds, she had even put up with young women coming to the surgery for no other reason than to try to get close to Mr. Granger, but none of that had prepared her for the young woman who walked into the surgery before they had opened, even before she had unlocked the door.
She was about 16, with dirty blond hair and grey, almost silver, eyes that seemed to be looking in different directions. Her clothing was an odd mix matching of styles, from 60s flower child to modern school girl She had come in without an appointment, and was asking to see either of the Grangers, occasionally grasping her jaw and delivering a most unconvincing ‘ouch!’
Marcy had just finished explaining for the fourth time that the Grangers were very busy and didn’t see non emergency patients with out an appointment, when the young girl fixed her with both of those odd grey eyes and said.
“This is the most important message you will ever deliver. You need to tell one of the Grangers that Luna Lovegood is here to see them about an important tooth related emergency. Tell them that I am a good friend of their daughter Hermione, and that the tooth related emergency is so important I need to speak with them right now. About teeth.”
Marcy felt oddly compelled to go find one of the Grangers.
Anne Granger had felt odd this morning, very odd. It was as if she had done something very important the night before, but for some reason could not quite recall what it had been. She sipped her tea, and read over the notes about the procedures she had scheduled to do that day. She smiled slightly when she heard music coming from her husband’s office only a wall away. He was on his Dire Straits kick again, the rhythms of The Sultans Of Swing drifted over to her. He was probably playing his ‘air guitar’ in a manor he imagined simulated Mark Knopfler. He was such a goof.
Marcy knocked on her door “Anne? There’s a young woman out front, she says she knows Hermione, and she has a very important ‘tooth emergency’.”
“A friend of Hermione? Show her in.” She paused. What ever it was that she could not remember from the night before was about Hermione. This was very odd, while she did not share her daughter’s eclectic memory, not being able to recall something that happened the night before was disturbing.
Marcy guided the young blonde-haired woman to the door of her office, and Anne rose to greet her.
“Good Morning, I’m Anne Granger. Marcy said that you are a friend of Hermione?”
“Yes, my name is Luna Lovegood. Hermione is a year ahead of me at Hogwarts. First, I must apologize for deceiving your receptionist; I am not here for a tooth emergency.” The girl looked a bit embarrassed at her ‘deception’ apparently unaware that it had fooled no one.
“How can I help you Luna?” Anne asked, recalling that Hermione had spoken of this girl, saying that she was sweet, but somewhat odd in her outlook.
“I am here to help you. Actually, I am here to help Harry. Helping you would help Hermione, which would help Harry. It is important to help Harry.”
“I don’t understand what you’re trying to tell me Luna. Could you explain it to me?”
Luna nodded. “You share Hermione’s highly organized mind, you aren’t likely to accept things out side your frame of reference without an explanation. Could you call Mr. Granger in here as well? If I am to explain everything it would be more efficient to only do it once.”
Andrew Granger joined them, at Luna’s insistence Marcy was canceling their appointments for the day.
“I don’t know what Hermione has told you of our world, but I will attempt to be concise. The Wizarding world is at war, and has been with hot and cold periods since the 1920s. The most recent cold period started on October 31st 1981.”
“The Dark Lord Voldemort had heard of a prophecy of a child born in late July with the power to kill him. He discovered that the two children fit the requirements to fulfill the prophecy were the heirs of two ancient bloodlines, the Potters and the Longbottoms. He chose to eliminate Harry Potter first. He attacked the Potter home in Wales, killing Harry’s father and mother. When he attempted to kill Harry who was 15 months old at the time, the killing curse rebounded and destroyed Lord Voldemort’s body, but not, for some reason, his spirit.”
“Harry survived and was placed in the care of his non magical relatives who treated him badly and never told him of his heritage. In our world, he is The Boy Who Lived, or the Chosen One. He is a hero and a symbol of hope. When he turned eleven, he learned of his magical heritage when he received his Hogwarts Letter. It was on the train to Hogwarts he met the love of his life, your daughter Hermione.”
“But Hermione is with her Boyfriend Ron.”
Luna looked sad. “I will get to that. That first year Harry and Ron saved Hermione from a mountain troll that had been let into the castle as a distraction.”
“Hermione mentioned that troll incident. So it was more dangerous than she let on? She could have been hurt?”
“A Mountain troll averages 5 meters tall, weighing in at 600 kilos, they are immensely strong. It is amazing that all three of them were not killed outright. Rather it was the first example I have found of what I am calling the “Harry Factor,” where his magic does not follow any rules that Harry is not aware of. He did not know that it was impossible for two untrained first years to defeat a Troll, so he did it. They all got rather banged up, but they all survived. The Troll did not.”
“The three of them bonded following that and they united to prevent a wizard possessed by the spirit of Voldemort from getting the Philosopher’s Stone.”
“Their second year had Ron’s sister Ginny becoming possessed by a soul fragment from Voldemort’s childhood, and opening the chamber of secrets, releasing a basilisk into the school. Hermione was petrified by seeing the basilisk’s reflection, Harry and Ron found the entrance to the chamber, but they were separated by a cave in. Harry continued on alone. When he finally entered the chamber he found that the soul fragment was busy draining the life force from Ginny so that it might live again. Harry had to kill the basilisk then destroy the dark magical artifact that was the anchor for the soul fragment. Harry was badly injured, and by all rights should have died, but they all survived.”
“Third year Harry had to deal with an escaped murderer who everyone thought was out to kill him, but turned out to be his father’s best friend and Harry’s godfather. A professor who turned out to be a werewolf, and dementors. Again by any reasonable expectation Harry should have died, but did not.”
“Fourth year, Harry was forced into a magical contest to compete in the very dangerous TriWizard Tournement. He was almost killed by a dragon, almost drowned saving Ron and a little girl from the lake, and following a maze competition was kidnapped to supply blood that allowed the recreation of a Body for Voldemort. Once again, by any sane evaluation, he should have died. He didn’t.”
“Fifth year, the ministry actively set out to deny the return of Voldemort, to do this they chose to discredit Headmaster Dumbledore and Harry. A most horrible woman was set upon the school, and she tortured Harry among others. Harry, Hermione, Ron, Ginny, Neville, and I ended up at the Ministry of Magic, and in a fight with a full dozen Death Eaters, Harry saw his Godfather die, and was possessed by Voldemort. We all should have died, we somehow survived, with Hermione being hurt he worst”
“On the train to Hogwarts for sixth year, Harry finally told Hermione how he felt about her. Hermione revealed her feelings for him, and they began to date. Headmaster Dumbledore decided that the Old Pureblood families would never tolerate the Chosen One mixing his line with a Muggle born witch. He told Harry he needed to break it off, Harry told him to go to hell. Dumbledore approached Ron and Ginny Weasley as well as their mother Molly. He arranged for Harry and Hermione to be dosed with a most horrible love potion keyed to Ron and Ginny, and for Ron and Ginny to dose themselves with the master potion, so that they could control their thralls.
The Love potion only remains effective if the victim has frequent sexual relations. I’m afraid that Ronald has been using Hermione in a most unforgivable way.”
“I’m going to kill the little son of a bitch!”
“I agree with your evaluation of Molly Weasley, but I suspect that if Hermione does not kill him, Harry will beat you to it. Harry’s sexual treatments have been coming at night by Auror Nymphadora Tonks, using her metamorphagus abilities to wear Ginny’s face and cement the bond.”
“Yesterday Hermione discovered the reason for her all consuming interest in Ronald. She ran home to you. Her absence was discovered, and you were placed under the imperius curse, controlled so that when she showed up you would alert the Order members and turn her over to them to be obliviated and returned to the Burrow. Hermione escaped before they could obliviate her. She went to Harry’s home, and convinced him to come with her; they have gone to ground in Muggle England somewhere and are looking for a safe place to stay. They will then come for you.”
Anne looked at her oddly. “When did Hermione contact you?”
“She did not.” Luna paused wondering how much these Muggles could understand, how much they would believe. “My bloodline is rife with seers and clairvoyants on both sides. My gift is the ability to see possibilities. For every decision reality forks. I can see the end result of those forks, as each decision is made in this particular branch of reality, the consequences of the alternative decision is lost to me. I am conscious of an infinite number of us having this conversation. An hour ago I was conscious of the current infinity and an infinite number of us NOT having this conversation. As soon as we began to speak, I lost contact with the infinity who are not speaking.”
“Ginny was my best and only friend growing up. I have loved Ronald since I was nine. It broke my heart when I saw what they were doing, what they had become, knowing there was nothing I could do to stop them. Then I saw Hermione free herself, and this possibility manifested, I had to try. Harry is our only hope, and he will only succeed with Hermione at his side. Even if that was not true, they didn’t deserve to be controlled and used the way they were.”
“You said you were here to help? How?”
“Mr. Granger, Hermione has an extremely organized mind. She knows that they are being tracked. She secured unregistered wands for both of them. She used a spell to inhibit an owl from being able to find them. They spent last night at Mrs. Granger’s mother’s house; they are now on the move and will be deciding what hotel to stay at tonight. Hermione has a list of 12 possible hotels across England. She is currently randomizing the list and will ask Harry to pick a number between 1 and 12, which will be the hotel at which they stay. She intends to get a suite, because Harry has insisted that you be rescued. When I know where they are staying, with your permission I intend to take you to them.”
“How much trouble are you likely to get into?”
“Not much. There is one chance in 12 that what I have done and will be doing will be discovered. Even then there is not much that can be punished because I am doing nothing wrong, legally or morally.” She stiffened. “They’ve chosen. The Dorchester in Mayfair.” She turned her attention back to the Grangers. “Have you decided? Do you want to join Hermione?”
“I’ve been bothered all morning by not being able to remember something that happened last night. Is this due to what ever they did to control us?”
Luna considered for a second. “Yes, most likely.”
The Grangers exchanged a look. “Yes we would like to join our daughter.”
“Thank you.” The blonde said quietly. “Wendy? Leest?”
There was a pop of Elvin apparition
“Thank you for coming Little Friends.”
“How can we help you Miss Luna?”
“Could you help me get to the Dorchester Hotel, then home?”
“Of Course Miss Luna.”
“Could you also help my friends?” she gestured toward the Grangers.
“Of course Miss Luna.”
Andrew Granger knelt down next to the small beings. “Hello, I am Andrew Granger. My daughter has told me of people like you. You are House Elves, correct?”
“No, we are not slaves. We are Forest Elves, we live free. We know no bonds.” Said the male Elf.
The Female Elf continued. “The Lovegood Clan has been friends of the Forest Elves for generations, we help them where we can, and they aid us.”
“My apologizes for the unintended slight. I thought my daughter had told me that he Forest Elves were extinct.”
“She probably did.” Luna shook her head sadly. “It is written that way in many texts. I love Hermione, I really do, but for all her intelligence, she is sorely lacking in imagination…”
When the door closed behind the bellman Harry and Hermione were startled by the pop of elfin apparition. They whirled about with their wands out and ready. There they saw Andrew and Anne Granger, Luna Lovegood and two very different looking elves. Hermione started to run to her parents, but Harry held her back.
‘The three of you shut up until I say you can talk. Mr. Granger, tell me the name of the dog Hermione had when she was four.”
“We’ve never had a dog. She had a cat named Mittens.”
“Mrs. Granger, How does Hermione take her tea?”
“A dash of milk. She gets annoyed if you stir it for her.”
“Luna, why were you putting up signs after the fight at the ministry?”
“To get my things back from my Housemates of course.”
Harry never broke eye contact with his guests. “That’s Luna alright, and that’s how you take your tea. What about the cat?”
“Exactly right Harry, it’s them.”
Harry lowered his wand. “I’m sorry, I had to be sure.”
Hermione rushed to her parents, Harry gestured for Luna to follow him to one of the bedrooms.
“How did you find us?”
“I’m a seer Harry. I can see connections and probabilities. I knew this was my opportunity to help you. You will need this book.” She handed the thin tome to him. “I must be going. You might want to ask your friend Dobby to try and get the Granger’s clothing for them. Good luck on your trip.”
“Good luck? If you’re a seer, shouldn’t you know how the trip, if we take one turns out?”
“Of course I do, but I don’t know which one it is until you chose it.”
She took the hands of the two strange elves and disappeared with a pop.