Title: Unlikely Friends 1/?
Pairing: Draco/Hermione, Hermione/Snape (friendship)
Warning: Contains Rape. It’s not graphic in this part or any other parts but it is suggested so if that offends you stop reading now.
Disclaimer: Not mine, If you recognize it, it belongs to J. K. Rowling
Distribution: Hermione’s Library (http://hl.shadesofgrey.us/efiction/ , WLS
Spoilers: Gonna say anything through OoTP to be safe. Probably nothing really specific.
Summary: Hermione’s attacked and can’t tell her usual friends and ends up finding support in unlikely places.
Author’s Notes: Takes place 6th year. I’m assuming all 6th years are roughly around 16.
**Draco and Snape are slightly OOC, but it is necessary for this fic to work.
Thanks to my betas Victoria, Meg, and Aly
Hermione pulled her robes closer to her body, still fumbling for the wand in her pocket. At least hoping it was still there. She could finally see the school in the distance, through the trees, she felt like she had been running forever. Not really running, more like stumbling quickly, her legs hurt too much to run. She just wanted to sit down, she felt sick to her stomach, everything hurt, but she was more afraid of stopping. She had to keep moving and she was not going to cry. Crying was letting him win and she wasn’t going to do that. She didn’t know why he had let her go, but she was afraid if she stopped he’d change his mind and find her.
She didn’t know what she’d do when she was out of the forest though, she couldn’t go to the school, and she couldn’t let Harry or Ron know what had happened. They would do something stupid, she was sure of that, they would try to find the person that… She wasn’t going to let them get killed because she was stupid enough to not only leave Hogsmeade alone but to try to cut through the forest.
She felt her knees give out and she fell to the ground, fortunately she was at the edge of the trees. The fear was starting to subside she was safe, no one would try to hurt her on Hogwarts’ grounds. Pulling herself to a sitting position she pulled her knees to her chest and wrapped her arms around them. How could she have let this happen? Studying wasn’t important enough to do something as foolish as going into the Forbidden Forest alone.
Draco scanned the darkness around him as he walked through the garden to the main entrance of the school. He was late getting back and would probably miss dinner. He wasn’t worried about being caught or getting in trouble, Dumbledore and Snape both knew he was meeting with Aurors in Hogsmeade today. He had been working unofficially for the Order of the Phoenix since his father’s arrest and his mother’s disappearance last June.
He had always known his father was a Death Eater. He had been raised to believe he was better than, well, everyone. What he hadn’t realized was the extent his father was willing to go to assure the pure-blood wizarding race. His father didn’t just want mud-bloods removed from the wizarding world he wanted them dead, and the muggles too. Draco wasn’t fond of the mud-bloods either but he didn’t think murder was necessarily the best option.
Shortly after his father had been arrested at the Ministry and sent to Azkaban, they had begun investigating the families of the arrested Death Eaters and his mother had disappeared. He received occasional letters from her so he knew she was alive but he didn’t know where and he wasn’t sure he cared anymore. Dumbledore found him over the summer and told him what had happened over the last few years, a very different story than what he had heard from his parents. He had also learned that for all his father’s lectures about pure-blood, Lord Voldemort was himself a mud-blood. Draco had agreed to help locate other Death Eaters, he was in a position to gather information that the others couldn’t. With his parents gone, family friends were falling all over themselves to take him for the summer, and keeping contact with him so he wouldn’t feel orphaned. Most still saw him, at sixteen, as still being a child and talked openly around him, giving him plenty of useful information for the Aurors to use in tracking them down.
Which was what he had been doing today, it was a Hogsmeade weekend, and so he could easily meet with people and not arouse suspicion. He had met friends of his father’s this morning, they had given him news of his parents. Not a location for his mother of course, just that she was well. Then he had spent the evening meeting with Moody and Tonks giving him what help he could. He couldn’t meet with them until most of the students were heading back to school so the wrong people wouldn’t get wind of what he was doing.
Draco stopped walking when a movement at the edge of the forest caught his eye. At first he thought it was an animal wandering to close too close to the edge, and then he saw it again and realized it was definitely a person, too small to be Hagrid though. He saw the person drop to the ground and stop moving. Sighing he changed direction and started toward the forest. He considered ignoring it if someone was stupid enough to wander in there at night they deserved what ever happened to them, but he was a prefect so it was his job to make sure the other students were safe. Of course, it was probably just a first year trying to make a reputation by sneaking into the forest. As he moved closer to the forest he let a smile cross his face, with any luck it was a Gryffindor, and he could take points away, or even better it would be Potter or Weasley.
As he approached the forest he saw someone sitting on the ground, back against a tree. It was a girl but he couldn’t see her face. She had her knees pulled up to her chest, her arms wrapped around them, face down, bushy brown hair blocking her face from—he knew that hair. It was Granger, his smiled widened, almost as good as catching Potter.
“Granger,” he sneered as he reached her, “How is it the perfect little Gryffindor prefect is out here breaking rules?”
“G-go a-away,” Hermione stuttered without looking up, there was no way she would let him see her crying, “Malfoy.”
“You can…” Draco stopped and looked at her, she was shaking and still hadn’t looked at him. She also sounded like she was crying. “Are you okay?”
He didn’t like her for so many reasons, she was a mud-blood, a know-it-all, and a Gryffindor. Those were enough to not like her, without adding she was Potter’s friend, and had helped send his father to prison, but he had never seen her like this, weak and scared, regardless of how much he hated her part of him had to respect her strength; no matter what he had said or done she had never let him see any hurt or fear. Now he didn’t know how to react to a vulnerable Granger.
“Go away,” she managed enough energy to look up and glare at him, “I can’t deal with you right now.”
Draco stared at her for a minute. She had definitely been crying, but more importantly he could see her face now. She had bruises around both eyes, and several smaller bruises along her jaw. He could see her lip was swollen and there was something dark, he assumed blood, near her lips.
“What happened to you?” He asked nervously, the sneer from a few minutes before completely gone.
“Why do you care?” she spat, “Just go inside and leave me alone.”
“Whatever,” Draco shrugged, she was obviously hurt but it wasn’t his problem.
He turned and started to walk back to the school, he’d let Dumbledore know where she was. He took several steps and heard the moan of pain coming from behind him and glanced back. She had barely moved at all, there was no way she could walk back alone. He spun around and headed back to her side.
“Not going to happen Granger,” Draco knelt in the grass next to her, “I can’t leave you out here like this. You need to see Madam Pomfrey.”
Draco eyed the exposed part of her legs and arms doubtfully. She had bruises and cuts all around her ankles and her arms didn’t look any better. The first time he had seen her she obviously fallen.
“I’ll walk back with you.” Draco suggested, “Can you walk?”
“No I--,” Hermione said quietly.
“Then I’ll go get Potter and Weasley to--.”
“No they can’t,” Hermione panicked, “They can’t know.”
“Fine,” Draco still didn’t know exactly what had happened to her, but he had an good idea, and she was right Potter and Weasley would just end up getting themselves hurt if he was right. “I’ll go get Professor Snape.”
“Snape?” Hermione pulled herself into an even smaller ball. “Why? Can’t you--?”
Bloody hell Granger,” Draco sighed he wasn’t accustomed to helping people and she wasn’t making it any easier, “I can’t lift you myself. I could probably levitate you to get you back but the only way in I know is through the main entrance right past the great hall. It’s dinner, the whole damn school will see us, that includes Potter and Weasley. I can get Dumbledore or Snape. If Dumbledore suddenly leaves during a meal the whole school, including teachers, are going to want an explanation. Snape’s my head of house, and no one will give a damn if he leaves the room.”
“Fine just don’t--,” She agreed in defeat.
“Tell anyone I know, not like I want the whole bloody school to know I’m helping the Gryffindor Know-It-All.”
Hermione pulled her wiped tears from her eyes as she watched Draco run toward the school. This was all her fault, she shouldn’t have left Hogsmeade alone, and she really should’ve known better than to cut through the forest. It wasn’t as if studying couldn’t have waited until Harry and Ron were ready to return, or even Lavender or Pavarti. Hell she would’ve better off waiting for a Slytherin to decide to return and walked with them. It would’ve been unpleasant but she wouldn’t have—no one would’ve attacked her if she hadn’t been alone.
Now she was depending on Draco Malfoy. Not only for help but to keep his mouth shut. She had to trust him not to walk into that castle and tell the whole school that she was out here beaten up and crying. She wasn’t sure how much he had figured out, and she hadn’t offered any information. If she could’ve walked she could’ve hidden in the passageway under the Whomping Willow until everyone was asleep and she could sneak in, of course she could be caught that way too. Odd thing was that she found herself trusting Malfoy to get Snape without letting anyone else know why.
While she waited she tried not think about the last few hours. She thought about the homework she had been in such a hurry to get to, that didn’t seem all that important now. She thought about how she was going to hide this from her friends. Harry and Ron could be a little dense but even they would notice the bruises on her face. She could go to Madam Pomfrey and get something that would heal the bruises quickly but then the whole school would know in a few hours. She also thought about what Draco was doing coming back so late and alone. She had noticed he was spending less time being followed by Crabbe and Goyle but she had seen them together earlier today and assumed they would all return together.
Snape frowned when he saw Draco racing through the doors and heading straight to the staff table at the front of the room. He knew Draco was meeting Moody today and would be late, so he hadn’t been concerned when his seat at the Slytherin table was empty. The question was, why he was bypassing his table, and ignoring the questioning looks from the entire student body. This was certainly not the way to maintain the low profile Dumbledore had cautioned him about.
Draco finally rounded the table and made his way toward Snape, still ignoring all the stares, from students and teachers. He knew they were watching him but for once there were things more pressing than how he was viewed by others.
“Professor can I speak to you in the hall please?” Draco whispered, bending low to speak in his head of house’s ear.
“Can it wait until after the meal?” Snape snapped.
“No,” Draco insisted, but hesitated to elaborate noticing he had drawn the attention of Mcgonagall, Sprout and Dumbledore.
“Mr. Malfoy I’m sure--,” Snape began. Draco leaned closer and quickly explained what had occurred outside, and what he believed the problem was.
Snape threw his napkin on his plate and stood. Draco quickly made his way around the table again and headed toward the doors he had come through a few minutes before. Snape followed glaring at several students who were still staring. As they left the hall Snape heard Dumbledore instructing the students to return to their meals. He didn’t speak to Draco until they were outside the building and heading toward where Draco had left Hermione.
“Are you sure of this Mr. Malfoy?”
“Sure that she was raped? No. Sure that she can’t walk? Not really, it’s what she said,” Draco said, “Sure that someone hurt her? Yes.”
Snape pulled out his wand and whispered a spell lighting the end so they could see better as the neared the forest. He frowned when he spotted her leaning against a tree. The girl was curled into the fetal position. That alone, told Snape the attack was brutal, as annoying as the girl could be she was extremely confident. Confident people rarely take such a protective position. Kneeling in the grass next to her he lowered his wand slightly. Taking in the bruises around her ankles and shins, as well as cuts and bruises on her wrists and hands, he was reasonably sure Malfoy’s theory was correct. The girl had been raped, unless it was a muggle attack, which he doubted. If a Death Eater had wanted to simply hurt her there wouldn’t be bruises, more damage could be done with an unforgivable. Whatever happened the person responsible wanted visible signs of attack.
“Miss Granger?” Snape said quietly, when she didn’t lift her head he repeated her name a little louder this time moving the lighted end of his wand closer to her head.
Draco gasped when the light shone on Hermione and he saw more clearly the extent of her injuries. He had never seen anyone beaten so badly before. It didn’t occur often in the wizarding world, he had heard of it with muggles but why use your fists when so much more damage could be done with magic, damage that was easier to hide from others.
Snape ignored the gasp that escaped Draco when Hermione lifted her face to them. He was barely containing the shock he felt. He shouldn’t have been this shocked, he had seen worse in his years as a Death Eater, he had caused worse. He wasn’t accustomed to seeing a student, particularly a student like Hermione Granger in this position.
“Can you walk?” He snapped when she shook her head, “You need to see Madam Pomfrey.”
“No!” She practically yelled, “Harry and Ron they would—they’ll get themselves killed.”
Snape frowned, she was right, as irritating as he found her friends, if they see her like this they would decide to be heroic and seek revenge and they would be killed.
“Fine then I’ll return you to your rooms.”
“I-I can’t g-go there either,” she started crying again, she had thought about that while waiting for them to return. If she went to her room Lavender and Pavarti would see her and they would tell the others.
“What do you suggest then Miss Granger?” Snape snapped, “I leave you out here alone for the night?”
“You can take her to my room,” Draco suggested. The one good thing that had come from being a Malfoy was a private room in the Slytherin dungeons.
“I’m not going to hurt her,” Draco snapped when both Hermione and Snape turned to stare at him, not wanting to give too much thought to his sudden helpfulness, “She doesn’t want to be found. My room is private and no one would dare go in without permission. The only other room that no student would go to is yours.”
Snape let out a loud sigh, Malfoy was right. No one ever went to his rooms, except for Dumbledore and he would have to be told anyway. He really didn’t see any other option. Putting a female student in a male student’s private room for the night wasn’t a choice.
“We’ll have to take you to my rooms for now,” he put one arm behind her back and one under her knees and lifted her.
Draco followed behind Snape as they walked along the forest edge staying in the shadows created by the trees. Snape quickly moved past the main entrance to the school before changing direction and moving closer to the castle. Draco didn’t question where they were going, he had long suspected that there were other ways into the castle, one’s the students weren’t aware of. He had become even more positive of his theory after learning that Snape had been spying for Dumbledore; he obviously hadn’t been using the main entrance when in his Death Eater robes. Snape led them into a clump of bushes and stopped in a small break in the foliage. He muttered a password and the brick moved back creating a small doorway, barely big enough for one person.
“You’re going to have to walk through on your own Miss Granger,” Snape set her on her feet and motioned for Draco to go through first. He then helped her to step through Draco helping her balance on the other side. Once all three were standing in the dark hallway the bricks resealed behind them.
“I think I can walk now,” Hermione said quietly when Snape moved to pick her up again.
Agreeing that she should try, both Draco and Snape kept a hand near her back in case she lost her balance. They slowly made their way down the hall several feet until Snape once again stopped in front of an empty brick wall. He quickly gave the password and led them through the doorway into a large sitting room. He led Hermione over to a large green couch on the far end of the room.
“I need you to tell me what happened Miss Granger,” Snape said once she was seated. He had barely gotten the words out when she started crying and shaking again. “If you don’t wish to talk now, it can wait, but we can’t help you if you don’t talk to us. I have to return to dinner, or someone may come looking for me. I am going to have to tell the Headmaster something, Professor Mcgonagall too I would think, she is your head of house.”
“No one—Harry and Ron can’t--.” Hermione pleaded.
“If you don’t wish for anyone to know they won’t,” Snape snapped, he understood the girl was upset but certain things had to be done, “The Professors are perfectly capable of keeping a secret.”
“Alright I just I don’t want to talk to anyone right now,” Hermione agreed.
“I’ll tell them your wishes,” Snape conceded and turned to Draco, “Mr. Malfoy, stay here until I return. I’ll bring dinner for both of you.”
Draco paced the room for several minutes after the door closed behind Snape. He had never been in Snape’s rooms before. The room was large one wall covered floor to ceiling with bookshelves, all filled with books. There was a large green leather couch against one wall, a small table on each side of it. Two black leather chairs across from the couch, a long coffee table in the center of the seating area. On the wall next to the door was a large dark desk, several neat piles of parchment sitting on it. There were two doors on the remaining wall, one he assumed led to the bedroom, and the other he wasn’t sure.
“I-I need to shower,” Hermione said, barely above a whisper.
“I’m sure even he must have one,” Draco shrugged, he thought it was an odd time to worry about showering but figuring any objections would just upset her further.
He pushed open the door closest to him. The first door he opened was a closet, filled with several dark teaching robes and cloaks. He pulled the door closed and went to the other door, pushing it open he found it led to a bedroom. Waving his wand to light the room, he spotted a door on the opposite wall and went over to open it.
“It’s through here Granger,” Draco said returning to where he had left the girl. “Can you make it on your own?”
Nodding slightly Hermione stood up and began to slowly move toward the door where Draco was standing. Still not wanting to give much thought too how nice the Slytherin was behaving. She knew there were no broken bones, she should be able to do this, but she felt so weak and everything ached so badly that she hadn’t made it more than a few feet when she felt her knees buckle. She reached for the chair to balance her but before she could reach it she felt hands grab her waist and steady her.
“Why don’t I help,” Draco muttered when she was steady again. He lifted one of her arms over his shoulder and kept her his hand on her waist and helped her walk slowly to the bathroom. “You’re on your own now.”
“Thank you,” Hermione muttered.
“I’ll, uh, I’ll see if I can find something for you to put on,” Draco said eying her torn robes and guessing what she had on under was no better.
Hermione leaned against the door when Draco pulled it closed. She needed to shower, she had to get the dirt off of her, she had to get him off of her. Sighing she pushed away from the wall and began searching the pockets of her robes. She had to find her wand, hoping she hadn’t lost it earlier. She found it quickly and searched the rest of her pockets pulling out several items she had put there to carry back from Hogsmeade.
Once her pockets were empty she began slowly undoing the buttons on the torn robes. She removed it and tossed it into the trash can in the corner. Her shirt wasn’t in any better condition, it was torn and had stains all over it, she removed that and tossed it into the trash with the robes. Quickly removing the rest of her clothes and tossing them with the shirt and robes she grabbed her wand and waved it at the shower, she waited until she saw the steam rising from the water before stepping in and pulling the curtain closed.
She stepped under the spray of water and shivered as the hot water hit her. It was too hot, she knew that but she needed hot, she had to wash it all off of her. She had to get rid of it. She reached for the soap and began lathering it all over her body. She could feel her skin getting raw from the rubbing but she still felt dirty. She let herself cry again as she scrubbed her body.
Draco pulled open the closet, more teaching robes and several pairs of pants. Sighing he pushed the door closed again. He crossed the room and began pulling open dresser drawers. The shirts he found would work but didn’t seem comfortable for her to sleep in, he found a drawer of pajama pants, sighing he put those back too, they would be way too big. Snape had nothing here she could wear.
She would need something else, he couldn’t get her things. It wasn’t as if he could go to Gryffindor Tower and ask for her night clothes. He could use a summoning spell to get something from his room but students would be returning to their common rooms and even Crabbe and Goyle would notice his clothing making its way through the common room on their own. There was a spell he knew of that would make the clothes disappear from his room and reappear here, but he wasn’t sure it was possible on school grounds. It was similar to Apparating which isn’t allowed. Finally deciding it was worth trying, he pulled out his wand and said the correct spell. Smirking he bent down and picked up the black boxers and t-shirt that appeared at his feet. She would probably be more comfortable in her own things but he had to know specifically what he wanted for the spell to work, and he had know idea what Hermione Granger slept in.
Walking over to the bathroom door, he could still here the water running, he raised his hand and knocked.
“I have some clothes for you to change into,” he said when she responded to the knock, “Is it okay if I put them on the sink?”
“Yes,” he heard the faint agreement and opened the door slightly, setting the clothes on the sink he closed the door and headed back to the sitting room to wait for her to finish showering.