This is my first fanfic, but it's been bouncing around in my brain for awhile. Love constructive criticism, but if you're just gonna be a hater, keep it to yourself. No one appreciates that.
Disclaimer: Sadly, Harry Potter isn't mine.
Watching Voldemorts body fall lifeless to the ground was truly one of the happiest moments of Hermione Grangers life. Harry had won. Holy shit they did it. Once the Death Eaters and Voldemorts other followers realized their precious Lord had actually failed, they started trying desperately to make their escape. With their thoughts now consumed with only wanted to get away, it was easy enough for the Light to restrain them. Only a small handful actually got away.
What nobody was expecting was the back lash that would come from the fall of the greatest dark wizard to ever live.
Hermione was in the middle of searching the grounds for anyone who was still alive when the pain suddenly hit her like a ton of bricks. She cried out and fell to the ground, gasping, trying desperately to draw in a breath. Hermione had endured torture from Bellatrix herself; this was so much worse. This pain wasn't just coming from her physical body, this pain was radiating out from her magical core. It felt like her magic was being stretch, like someone was trying to rip it from her body piece by piece. Shredding it into an unrecognizable mess.
She could vaguely hear someone shouting her name as she continued to scream herself hoarse. She could actually feel her vocal cords straining. The pain only seemed to get worse the longer it went on, until Hermione found herself begging for the darkness to claim her. Wether that darkness was death, or unconsciousness, she really didn't care at this point as long as the pain would just end!
Thankfully she didn't have much longer to wait, as her vision started to dim around the edges, until finally, everything slipped away into that blessed nothingness.
When Hermione finally started to regain some of her senses, all she could really do was lie there and take stock of her body. The pain was gone, and in its absence Hermione could actually appreciate that it hadn't, in fact, killed her. As far as she could tell, there didn't really seem to be anything wrong with her. After trying to feel out if there was anything amiss, and finding nothing, she decided the next step would probably be to actually open her eyes and see for herself.
Slowly lifting her lids Hermione was grateful for the dim lighting so she wouldn't have to wait long for her eyes to adjust. She found herself looking up at a dark stone ceiling with torches burning around the edges of the room. there weren't very many, which explained why it was so dim. The room wasn't terribly big either. About the size of an interrogation room she had seen on a muggle police show her dad used to watch.
Guessing from the overwhelming silence, Hermione could only assume she was alone. She certainly couldn't see anyone from her vantage point. Slowly she swung her legs over the side of the bed, simultaneously bringing up her torso so she could sit on the edge of the bed. Sitting up, she could take in the room in its entirety.
She had actually been closer to the mark than she'd thought when comparing the room to a muggle police interrogation room. On one wall she could see an observation window, that thankfully, went both ways. There was also a plain black, metal door off to the right of the window. Other than her bed, a couple of monitors, and a nightstand, there wasn't anything else in the room.
Thankfully she didn't have long to wonder what on earth was going on as she clearly wasn't in the hospital wing or St. Mungo's. She was pretty sure she had never been here in her life.
The door opened inward and in walked Harry, followed closely by Kingsley a healer. Hermione was so thankfully to see some friendly faces after waking up in such an unfamiliar place that she jumped off the bed and tried to run to give Harry a much needed hug. She only made it a few steps before she felt her body collide with an invisible barrier. Confused, she looked up and realized that Harry, Kingsley, and the healer were all still standing up against the far wall.
"Harry…. What's going on? Where are we? Why won't you come any closer?" she asked. He was really starting to make her nervous the way he was looking at her. But it was Kingsley who replied.
"Hermione, you may want to sit back down for this."
Well, that certainly didn't sound ominous at all. Hermione slowly back up and sat back on the bed behind. "Go ahead, I'm listening."
"We all know that Voldemort was truly one of the most powerful wizards to ever live. No point denying it, true he was as twisted as they come, but he had the magic to back it."
"I'm sorry Kingsley, but what does Voldemort have to do with any of this?" Hermione waved her hand around indicating the small room, rather depressing, room around them.
"I was getting to that, just let me get there." He ran a hand over his bald head in exasperation. "This isn't easy Hermione, and I'd really appreciate it if you would try not to interrupt."
"I'm sorry, please continue." she said, more subdued, trying to squash down her curiosity and stall the dozens of questions flying around in her brain.
Kingsley took in a deep breath before he continued, "Right. So, like I said, Voldemort was powerful. Lots of magic. But because of his Horcruxes, his magic had become unstable. Your soul is directly connected to your magical core, see, and with Voldemort tearing his into tiny pieces, well, I'm sure you can only imagine the kind of damage that would do to his magic. This is all very old magic, most wizards just take it for granted now without really stopping to think about it. I'd be willing to bet that Voldemort certainly didn't, otherwise I believe he would have found a different approach to immortality. As someone who placed magical ability right up there next to blood purity, I'm sure he never would have dreamed of harming his magic for the sake of living forever. He never would have purposely made himself weaker." Here Kingsley shifted his weight from foot to foot, trying to gather his thoughts so as to best explain this without giving the poor girl anymore reason to panic.
"Magic isn't just created out of nowhere for someone to use. It's part of nature. It's ingrained into the Earth herself. Sun rises, and sets, seasons change, magical children are born. But just like the cycle of the seasons, magic flows through us in a similar fashion. We grow old, we die, our magic is released for nature to absorb and wait for magical babies to be born so the magic can be used once again. The only problem with this cycle is that throughout our lives, we can absorb more of the magic around us, even after birth. So, someone like Voldemort, actually took that magic from his surroundings. But because he took it by force, through death and destruction, it became Dark magic. If a person was nurturing, encouraging and kind, nature tends to give of that magic freely, and thats how you end up with strong wizards like Dumbledore."
It appeared Harry couldn't wait any longer to jump in after all his fidgeting and waiting for Kingsley to get to the point. "When Voldemort finally died, a real, lasting death, it released all his Dark magic, but because nature is actually a Grey magic, it couldn't take it all back. Nature is all about balance, and that much Dark magic upset that delicate balance."
Hermione couldn't help herself any longer, "this is really all very interesting but it still doesn't answer the question, Why are we here?!" She was really starting to lose her patience. This felt like the longest, most roundabout, obsolete explanation of her life. That was saying something, considering all the lectures she sat through with Professor Binns.
"We're getting there, I promise Hermione, just please, bare with us for a little longer." Harry said. She could tell something was really bothering him, as he hadn't looked her in the eye this entire time. "Look, the short of it is this; Nature is trying to balance itself out by seeking out Light magic, for the Dark magic to blend with and return to its natural state as Grey magic. Apparently nature has decided it's going to use you Hermione to create that balance."
Hermione swore you could have heard a pin drop. "I'm sorry, but you're talking as if nature is sentient and can just decide what goes where…"
"It is Hermione. Nature is very much a sentient force, much like Time actually. But thats beside the point." Kingsley took another deep breath to steady himself. Oh good, apparently they hadn't even gotten to the hardest part of this conversation. Hermione couldn't wait to here what the rest of this insanity was.
"Like Harry said, nature has chosen to use your Light magic to try and balance out the excess of Dark magic. There must be balance. But because there is just so much Dark magic, Your own magic seems to be having a difficult time accepting it. And there's the obvious as well, that your magic is Light, so it naturally would balk at trying to be squashed together with Dark magic. The result of your Light magic resisting the Dark magic was the pain you felt after the Battle. After you lost consciousness the magic lashed out because the two wouldn't fit together. It took almost 3 hours for the magic to settle again so we could get to you."
"How long have I been unconscious?" Hermione suddenly asked, sitting up a little straighter. "How long has it been since the battle?" She had assumed that it had only been a short time, but was just taking in the fact that Kingsley was actually wearing the Ministers robes, and Harry seemed to have grown some scruff on his face.
"How. Long?" She repeated. Both Kingsley and Harry looked hesitant to answer so she wasn't surprised when the healer finally piped up.
"You've been out for 2 weeks dear."
2 weeks?! "You're saying I've been just lying here for 2 weeks? was there no way to wake me up? My magic should have healed and been fine within a day or two at most!" Hermione could feel the panic starting to set in. "There is so much that can happen in 2 weeks! What the hell have I missed!?"
Kingsley was definitely starting to lose his patience with her continuous interruptions. "Hermione, if you can't control yourself, we aren't going to answer any more questions today. We still have quite a bit to cover, so I really need you to reign it in for a little longer. Can you do that for me?"
That certainly made Hermione snap her mouth shut. There was no way she was giving up the chance to get those answers right now! She waved her hand in an indication to continue.
"Thank you. Now, like I was saying, it was 3 hours before the magic settled and we could finally see if you were alright. The magic had created, basically, a chaotic field around you as it tried to smash itself together. Unfortunately it happened again about another 3 hours later. And has continued to do so in 3 hour intervals consistently. Hermione, your magic has become completely unstable. It tries to attack anyone who comes near you, it damages anything around you, and it's causing you pain because the magic is battling it out in your core as well. The reason you were out for 2 weeks, is because we medically induced it. If we let you stay conscious through these episodes, it would have driven you insane from all the pain. Probably in only a couple of days.
"So that leads us to here. This is one of the observation rooms used by curse breakers in the Ministry. They use it for smaller objects that are easily transported. They bring them here, so in case something reacts unexpectedly, they at least do so in a heavily warded area so nothing, an no one else will be harmed. This was the only place we could think of to try and contain the damage once the magic tries bonding again, and there's no chance of anyone stumbling upon you and getting got in the crossfire. We set up the extra wards just in case something unexpected were to happen while we are in the room. Thats why you couldn't reach Harry. The monitors are to help check your vitals, and alert us to any changes. Such as you waking up."
Here Kingsley paused to allow her to absorb the information before continuing. Hermione could see from his face that there was, in fact, even more to this delightful tale.
"Ok…." Hermione started slowly, organizing her thoughts. "But why 2 weeks then? Is it really taking so long for the magic to bond together? If nature wants balance, shouldn't it have been achieved by now?"
Apparently this was where the healer decided it this was her information to share. "Unfortunately, Miss Granger, it seems nature isn't quite capable enough of blending Light and Dark magic, while it resides in another being. It's only capable of doing so as it is returned to its natural state, without attachment, or affiliation. it cannot simply force your Light magic to mix with the Dark magic. It's taken us 2 weeks to come up with a solution that doesn't involve death."
At this Hermione could only stare at them. So what, this would never end unless she died?! Well, isn't that a happy thought. "You said you've found a solution though"…. She really didn't want to get her hopes up too high.
"You know we love you, no matter what, right Hermione?" Harry asked her, finally making eye contact. "We'll always be here for you."
"If you're trying not to scare me Harry, you just failed miserably" she said, trying desperately to lighten the mood. No one even cracked a smile. Tough crowd.
"The plan isn't terribly complicated actually, and there is only a very small chance of it not succeeding." Harry had seemed to gain more confidence, now that he was realizing she hadn't ripped into anyone yet for only now talking to her, two weeks later. "We realized the problem was that your magic is trying to squash together Light and Dark magic. So we just needed to find something else for the Dark magic to attach to…. I guess it would be more appropriate to say someone else."
"Can we do that? Can we force nature to allow the magic to bond with someone else?" If she thought about it, this all really was terribly fascinating. Or would be if it was about someone else.
"No, no, the magic is still going to bond with you, we just need to give the Dark magic something else to latch onto first, instead of trying to ram itself into your magical core like a battering ram." Harry's courage seemed short lived as he started to shrink back a little bit from her as he finished his thought. "If we bond you with someone, who the Dark magic is more sympathetic with, then the magic can flow through that more natural bond instead. We're basically giving it direction instead of smashing up against you."
"Wait…. Are you saying I have to bond with someone…. and because the magic is looking for balance it'll probably have to be for the rest of my life…. So, what like a marriage bond?" Hermiones voice had begun to rise in pitch until she only squeaked out the last bit.
"Thats exactly what it means Hermione." Harry sighed, looking at the floor again. Coward. "We have to find someone who's own magical core can withstand the addition of that much magic. Someone who's magic is far enough over on the spectrum that they can accept magic that Dark."
"Well, what the hell kind of person can take in Voldemorts leftover!" She shrieked. This was not going well. They may need to give her the Calming Draught the healer brought after all. "I'm going to have to spend the rest of my life attached to someone, who's magic is Dark enough to be sympathetic to Voldemorts, where are you going to find someone like that who doesn't just up and kill me instead?!" She was up and pacing at this point.
"The only people we've found able to even come remotely close to withstanding his magic, are the Death Eaters we captured."
There was a strained silence at Kingsley's announcement.
"What. The. Actual. Fuck. Kingsley. Why don't we just murder me now! Save someone else the trouble!" She was really working herself up into hysterics now. "This is officially one of the worst ideas I've ever heard, and I'm friends with the Weasley twins! I'll just go spend the rest of my life with someone who hates me becomes my parents don't have magic! I can't possibly see this going wrong, in any way!" She had begun gesticulating wildly.
Hermiones tirade was cut short by the beeping on one of the monitors.
"Times up Minister, we really need to get moving before we get caught in here." The healer came bustling forward, forcing Hermione back into the bed. Hermione's eyes only widened as she felt full blown panic take over.
"Times up for what? What's going on? What are you doing?!" Hermione demanded as the healer started pulling out potions from her pockets and setting them on the bedside table, while forcing Hermione to lie back down.
Kingsley suddenly looked very tired as he said "thats the timer Hermione. Our 3 hours is up. We have to put you back under again I'm afraid. We can't be in here when the magic tries to bond again, and I'm sure you don't want to feel it again either, we'll wake you back up when we have anything more to tell you."
At that Kingsley made a quick exit. Leaving poor Harry behind watching his best friend be restrained with potions being forced down her throat.
"Harry, please don't leave me like this, I'm begging you!" Hermione had completely given in to the panic by now, tears flowing freely "Just wake me back up when its over. Don't let me just stay here until you have something new to tell me! Don't let them do this to me, please Harry! There's still so much unanswered, don't do this!"
Harry just watched sadly from his spot against the wall talking softly. "I'm so sorry Hermione, you need to trust us, this is the only way. You'll understand later, I promise. I'm so sorry. I'm sorry."
The last thing she saw before the darkness came again, was the sad but determined look on Harry's face as he closed the door behind him.