chapter one: futile
A/N: This is a Wishlist fic that came from a prompt for patriciatepes. It was: Snape/Hermione: Sometimes, death isn't goodbye, as Hermione pleasantly finds out. Crossover.
I ended up going a bit massive and pulling in all the dead and reincarnating them. *shrugs*
A/N 2: Reviews are Good. This has been a subtle hint from the author - Please return to your regularly scheduled reading.chapter one: futileFutile.
She wishes she had never thought it. Had never had the word come to mind - because now that it has it won't leave. Futile.
A poisonous seed that has grown deep within her, burrowing roots in her soul and breaking ground in her mind. Futile.
They have never wholly given up, given in, before. They have bent many times in the past but never broken. Now that the idea has come though she can't help but wonder at the point of it all. To what end they have been fighting for so many years. Futile.
She should just set down her wand, just give up. What was the use?
It was that thought that broke Hermione sharply out of the continuous loop, sending her falling sharply to the side. Her body feels numb and it is difficult to catch herself before she hits the ground.
She does though - and Hermione take a second to pant on her hands and knees, collecting herself. As soon as she is able, her eyes search desperately for Harry and Ron (at almost the same moment her hand closes around the wood of her wand – still, wonderfully solid and in her possession.)
They are still right next to her as they had been before the three of them had been hit by the blast of the creatures spell (a creature that, it seems, has taken the opportunity to flee) but the boys are still stuck in their minds. With one glance Hermione knows to be much more worried about her brunet best friend than her red headed one - because where Ron’s eyes are moving rapidly and his fist are clenching and unclenching, Harry is just dazed. Where Ron’s mind is actively fighting it, Harry’s has been swamped.
Breathing in sharply she pushes herself upright again and – in an utterly unprofessional move that she has learned to be highly effective through way to many cases like these - she sharply pinches Ron’s ear bringing him the rest of the way out with a startled yelp.
He barely glares at her (they are becoming too used to this). A stumbling step as he is abruptly shoved back into reality and a half-hearted rub at his ear, and Ron is right back in the swing of things, standing beside her studying Harry who is only getting worse.
She tries to do the same for him as she just did for Ron but even before she tries she knows it won’t work. Ron’s minds natural reaction to being effected by the Horcruks was to become defensive while Harry's had never really recovered from all of its tampering over the years. Now he is extremely sensitive to any kind of mental attack. It’s not the first time it has bit them in the arse in the field.
As he continues to stare blankly Hermione bites her lip and contemplates her next move - mourning, once again, that all teachers in this seem to be dead now.
It is Ron who makes the decision when she hesitates - pointing his wand directly at Harry and says with a steady voice that she has come to recognize (and calm automatically when she hears) as he has become the Medic of their three person team. "Envenerate."
She would scold him for using such a spell that is only supposed to be done on those unconscious but it does the job (Harry giving a deep breath, his eyes moving around rapidly, and hands scrabbling at the leafy ground.) Instead she just shares a look of understanding with Ron, for they both knew the loop their brains were stuck in and Harry's would have been all the worse - when it comes to their best friend the physical has always been much easier to heal then the psychological - and this way they will just have to deal with their twitchy partner as he runs himself down from an adrenaline rush.
That isn't really all that different from a normal mission.
The bar is very dirty.
Hermione is almost able to ignore this in the face of finally having a seat after having followed Harry around town all day with Ron, practically running in and out of stores he had no intention of buying anything from but just wide-eyed and needing to move from the amount of adrenaline going through his body. (And knowing he is going to drink one beer and pretty much crash once he sits down and they will have to Apparate home and tow him up the stairs so they don’t mess up the wards).
Almost. But it is very very dirty.
She tries to discreetly cast some cleaning charms on the table and sees Ron smirk at her as he returns with their drinks.
Hermione pointedly ignores him and uses the fact that she notices Harry out of the corner of her eye returning from the loo as an excuse to turn away from his playful teasing. She goes to wave to her friend to signal where they have snagged a table but the move is aborted when she sees that someone has cornered him.
Hermione is up and out of her seat almost before she realizes she has moved. Usually she would let Harry deal with things like this himself, he has had plenty of practice brushing off overenthusiastic advances from reporters or romantic interest but this feels different. Not only is Harry very impaired from the downward slope his body is going through but the woman who has approached him makes her instincts from the War flare. Ron, at her back, is back up that calms her nerves and all that she needs to know that this feeling isn’t all in her head.
“…I heard you had a hard day today,” they hear the brunet say in a coaxing voice, her hand on Harry’s arm.
“Yeah,” he says shortly. And Hermione can see Harry closing down even more, trying to pull away from this woman.
But she isn’t letting go that easily. “Don’t you blame the people who taught you? Don’t you think they could have done more?” she cajoled, smiling at him widely. “Don’t you wish
they were here now to show you?”
Hermione’s warning bells are going off like mad now and she slowly reached for her wand.
Harry has already yanked his arm out of her grasp though. “Of course I wish I wasn’t like this – that I didn’t always ruin the missions. But there is no one teach me left and no amount of saying “I wish I could see them again
” will bring them back,” he hissed in her face.
Hermione feels winded by this outpouring and is grateful for the way Ron automatically grabs Harry and pulls him into a hug – refuses to let him shy away from comfort even when he violently tries to at first (a sudden sharp yank before he exhaustedly leans into his friends solid strength). She gently leans her head against the small of his back in support (smiling sadly at the shuddering sigh, the exhaustion she can feel
) and is almost shocked to hear the ladies voice again – having assumed she would have gone away after that.
“Oh, silly boy – silly Boy Who Lived
,” she purred his given monicker mockingly and her face was distorted now, wrinkles and veins (so, distinctly - shockingly - not human anymore), they pull out their wands but they barely know what to do and she just keeps talking. “Oh, I can do so much with that word. Wish granted
And, with no flashy lights or portal, the bar was just suddenly instantly empty of one Golden Trio.
Calmly the woman sat back down and picked up her cocktail.
“That good for your boy’s group, Anya?” the woman asked toasting the air. Her drink refilled in answer. “It’s good for the kids too,” she murmured quietly.
And sipping daintily, Halfrek, Hallie to her friends, smiled.