The Second Chance Enchantment
AN: It was brought my attention that describing Dean Thomas in teen Severus POV, as half-coloured was offensive. It was not my intention to upset anyone with this statement. I was trying to convey historical accuracy, considering Severus background, what was considered acceptable at the time in 70's UK. I do not think Severus father was racially tolerant given how he treated his magical Wife and Son. I was trying to show how times have changed from 1978 to 1996. Something that Hermione will help Severus in as the story progresses. Severus will be realising and changing a lot throughout this story as he continues to be with Hermione. He was placed in Gryffindor for a reason, he will see that they are – despite the Marauders – a tolerant group who likes to be friendly and he just wound up with a bad batch.
Please note: This story will be dealing with all forms of racism, from both the Wizard world with Mudblood as their derogatory term, and the Muggle world and some of their attitudes to people from other cultures. I want to tackle what I know is a sensitive, but all too real, issue of racism in a realistic manner. I DO NOT HOLD RACIST VIEWS AT ALL!
Trigger warning: This chapter contains attempted and historic Implied!rape.
Daphne Greengrass: Georgie Henley
Theodore Nott: Thomas Sangster
Septimus Snape: Teenage Alan
As Septimus continued his vigil in the common room, Neville Longbottom had to work on his Herbology assignment. So, with his satchel, parchments, quills and books he made his way down to the Library where he found it was filled with O.W.L or N.E.W.T studying students. Sighing as he realised a group of Slytherins were sat in the corner he normally preoccupied, Neville lost hope of finding a friendly face to sit with. Eventually, he found a rather empty looking spot on a table that had a mixed group of ages and houses. At least here he may get some peace.
Setting his bag down, Neville sat down and brought out the parchment and quills, with his ink pots and books. He really had to focus, Herbology was about the only subject he cared about, so he had best make this good. Each time he watched Professor Sprout, Professor McGonagall and Professor Hagrid his desire increased to also become a Professor. It was no contest as to whom it would be fun to be Apprenticed with; Pomona Sprout had taken a liking to him the moment he stepped foot in her class.
It seemed his mother was also somewhat green fingered as well, every time he dug his fingers into a pot of compost and set a seed into the earth, Neville felt closer to his mother. Every new growth resembled the increase in heartbreak and yet the love he held for the woman who gave up her sanity for him to live bloomed exponentially within his heart. He had just set his table right and was about to search for references and drawings he could magically trace when he bumped into a girl. She was a quiet Slytherin in his year. Rather beautiful too, if Neville had any say but he did not.
"Sorry," he mumbled as he tried to side-step her. Clumsily, he bumped into her, causing her to fall on her rump – her books to clatter on the floor – ink pots had smashed on the floor and splattered all over the place. He braced himself waiting for the insult. It never came. He opened his eyes and saw the girl staring up at him from the floor with a blush on her face. "Erm, need a hand?" he offered, poking his arm out.
"Sure," Daphne whispered shyly as Neville suavely helped her up. Auburn locks curled and waved down her shoulders, framing her rather beautiful face. Languid locks tumbled down over her rather generous chest. Wide blue eyes with green flecks rimmed around the dark, almost turquoise, iris softened at Neville's embarrassed state. "I have been trying to get your attention anyway. I am having trouble with my Herbology assignment. Professor Sprout said I should ask you but well..." she fingered her green and silver tie and sighed. "I was not... I mean..."
"Hey," Neville whispered gently taking her hand in his, so she was no longer drawing attention to her tie. "It is fine, come on. I am stationed here."
Just as they sat down a group of Slytherin men showed up. One of them, a burly seventh year, sat beside Daphne – draping an arm around her shoulder casually slumping in the chair: "Hi baby," he said. "You and me, later yeah?"
Daphne rolled her eyes and shrugged the offending limb from her shoulder: "Get lost Bulstrode!"
"Oh, come on," he leered down her neck disappointed she was buttoned up. "You and I can make our own magic you know."
His mates pushed Neville out of the way as they surrounded the girl. She shrank in her seat realizing how like sharks they resembled. She tried to push the leader away, but another wrapped his arm around her waist: "Oh come on, Daphne, play with us, yeah."
She would have been pawed all over if there was not an indignant HEY from somewhere. Prompting Pince to arrive tutting at the group sternly. This was Neville's plan.
"Madam Pince," he said. "These boys were harassing my study partner."
The largest one of the gang stood tall and straight as he loped towards Neville, aping what he had witnessed Fenrir Greyback do the previous summer, with a leer Bulstrode picked up the Gryffindor's tie and sneered.
"No snake would sit five miles from you, Longbottom!" he leaned over and then gloated: "Seen your Granger – grown inter quite hot stuff. P'raps we'll take our fun out of her instead."
"You go near her and I'll show you how I put adult Death Eaters in prison," Neville said.
The seventh-year gang left the tables sneering to a man. When they had left Neville breathed a huge sigh of relief. Slowly, he turned around and saw that Daphne was watching him with wide-eyed disbelief. Never had she felt so safe, protected and respected than she did now.
"You're a fine young man," Madam Pince said. "Thank you for alerting me to the issue rather than trying to deal with it yourself."
"No problem, Madam Pince," he murmured.
When the Librarian left, Neville sat down and offered Daphne a shy smile. She returned it with one just as demure.
"So," Neville squared his shoulders as he brought a book between them he had chosen for research. "What exactly are you having trouble with?"
Daphne stuttered, confused as to how Neville immediately turned back to studying after just rescuing her from thugs, rather than quivering with fear. Whatever Potter had taught him when Umbridge was here had changed him and she liked it! Once she was over the initial shock she then explained that she did not get the whole point of deseeding by hand when they drop naturally.
"Also," she whispered, "why do we grow them when they have no decent qualities and no properties to use in other things like Potions or wands?"
Neville smiled as he patiently and quietly explained how necessary and vital it was that this plant be cared for in this specific manner. Backing up his claims with texts – showing her how to construct the argument that Professor Sprout required.
"All right," he said. "Here is a list of other books to check out and use. Now I have shown you how to work out the argument I hope that helps you to get an O."
"How do you know so much about this?" Daphne asked with nothing but awe for the Gryffindor her dorm mates often joked about. "You are wonderful, thank you!"
He blushed a deep beetroot red at this compliment. "When I was a child I was often seen in the garden, one of my uncles enjoyed it and he was my favourite one. Being amongst the plants and flowers reminds me of him. Apparently, he and my mother, when children, used to garden for a hobby. So, I guess I'm more my mum than my dad who was brave and heroic and everything I'm not."
"So, he's..." Daphne really wanted to tell him that she thought he was perfect and they should marry and make babies, but she could not. She was scared he'd reject her. "I'd heard about what happened to your mum and dad, no one deserves that. I hate Bellatrix Lestrange with a passion, she gives all us Slytherin females a bad name. I can assure you we are not all like her, you know."
"The day my Letter came," Neville said sadly. "He died with a smile though, his last words were: Do the Longbottom's proud won't yer son! I haven't though," he shrugged his shoulders. "I know you are not like her, Miss Greengrass."
"Oh, I don't know," she lowered her lashes. "You put adult wizards in jail. I heard you flew to London on a Thestral – that's brave in itself, I think anyway. No, I'm not. I heard she is in love with You-Know-Who. In a romantic sense. They actually..." she shuddered with disgust.
Neville brightened – did a Slytherin really just compliment him on an overtly Gryffindorian attribute?
"Yeah, she's one weird bitch all right," Neville smiled.
"The strange bitch," Daphne said. They laughed softly at her name calling. "Anyway, so um..."
"Well, I guess I will see you," he said.
Daphne's smile brightened up that alcove and Neville's heart: "With tips like these you may never get rid of me," she said full of Slytherin confidence as she airily flicked her hair over her shoulder.
If Neville was more like his father in that moment he'd have leaned on the wall and said: Is that a promise? However, he was more like his mother, so he blushed instead.
"Yeah, um, better go before curfew."
Daphne nodded almost reaching out to take hold of his hand. She was probably the shyest girl in Slytherin and let her arm fall uselessly off by her side.
"Yes, we must – er get going."
Neville stepped aside the same moment she was about to go around him. So, she stepped the other side, again their steps coordinated again. This went on a few times before Madam Pince called for all books to be put back in their appropriate places. Neville gave her a few books that were the opposite way of where he was headed so as to stop the dodge and apologise dance. He did not see Daphne turn around and look at his back and sigh: "Thank you, Neville, would you like to go to Hogsmeade with me sometime because I have only liked you since the first bloody day of school! Well done, Daphne, smart move – now he just thinks I'm some dumb idiot or worse," she hugged her books to her chest as she dodged between tables. "A Death Eater in the making," she glumly thought aloud once out of the Library.
Slowly, Daphne made her way back to her common room. She was about five feet from her common room when she'd accidentally bumped into Hermione Granger. She had planned her 'run-in' with Neville but not knocking into the class Clever Clogs. Daphne noticed that the Prefect was looking rather... flushed, bright-eyed and happy. She peered round and knew immediately that the Gryffindor had returned from a meeting with their taciturn head of house.
"Oh sorry, Miss Greengrass," she said dreamily.
That was not Granger like at all. No one left Professor Snape's office looking like Christmas had been made permanent. Yet Miss Granger did not look like she had come back from a good berating either. Unless, she shifted on her feet, uncomfortably aware that there was a frisson surrounding Miss Granger. Daphne tried to shudder with disgust at the thought of her Head of House in any sort of non-professional stance with students, but with Granger it did not seem so – wrong. Not since she witnessed the kiss with a young boy who looked almost like him, along with everyone else in the Great Hall.
"Are you all right, Granger?"
"I am well, Miss Greengrass, more than well in fact," she sighed as she moved her hair aside. Daphne saw the blooming of a love bite on the other witch's neck. Her Head of House had... "I am off to bed now – I have to set Septimus' mind at rest." Then, as if the sight of a book had snapped her back to reality, Hermione was all purpose again as she tilted her head to look at the title. "Herbology?" she smirked. "Did you have problems with this week's Herbology assignment?"
Immediately, Daphne stiffened: "We can't all be clever clogs like you, Granger!" she sneered.
"No, please," Hermione hurried after, her eyes wide as she realised she had offended the first Slytherin to show her an ounce of respect other than Septimus/Severus. Daphne was halted from storming past the brunette by Hermione grabbing hold of the strap of her bag. The Slytheriness turned around and felt a little guilty at making Hermione look at her like a kicked puppy, "I did not mean any insult. I was just going to suggest that you go to our resident Herbologist in the making, Neville Longbottom was born with the green fingered touch, as my gran used to say."
Daphne sighed: "Sorry, Granger, that was uncalled for. So, you have problems with plants too?"
"I kill cacti!" she said.
Daphne giggled. "Actually, I spent the entire evening in the Library with Ne – er Longbottom," she said. "We had fun."
"Good," Hermione said, she wondered what she could say when someone interrupted them.
"Look lively lads, two for the price of one!"
"What's that supposed to mean?" Hermione said already fingering her wand. The DA coin nearby in case she needed backup.
Two lads trapped Hermione on one side whilst two others dragged Daphne the other. The Gryffindor closed her eyes and thought of her message. In TROUBLE!
The young men laughed: "When you're done with the Mudblood – we'll swap. We'll need cleaning after all!"
They ignored the girl's indignant squeaks of protests: "Nothing like getting down and dirty after a shower," one Daphne's side replied.
The foursome chuckled. Hermione was going to scream for help had not a familiar voice said to leave them be. Daphne closed her eyes and sighed with relief. It was Neville!
"Oh look, it's Longbottom!" sneered a man currently shoving his hand up Hermione's shirt. "Shall we invite him to join in? Or show him what being a man is all about!"
"He knows what being a man is all about!" Daphne yelled.
One of the attackers hit her face hard with the back of his hand. This made Neville angrily grip his new wand, clutching it so tightly in his fist that his knuckles turned white as his face became red.
"EXPELLIARMUS!" he yelled grabbing the boys wands, so they could do no magical damage to the witches.
Thankfully, his yell brought attention from other returning Slytherins. They rushed to see what was happening. Pansy Parkinson's eyes bulged at the sight of Neville Longbottom standing fierce, holding four wands in one hand and his own aimed at the two attacking Daphne. Blaise saw Hermione struggling the other side. She seemed to be sobbing in distress.
Then everyone held their breath as one of the boys had managed to rip Hermione's outer robes from her. Wrenching her cardigan buttons. As well as her shirt. She stood there practically naked in front of the entire crowd. She was so happy. Euphoric when she left Sn... no, Severus' – rooms. Now she was in front of the entire house who hated her because she existed and now her body was on display. She tried to run towards Neville, but his friend excitedly grabbed her skirt and managed to tear the zip out of its stitches in the struggle. That was when Theodore Nott realised things had gone too far and stepped forward.
"I think you're taking things too far, Saunders!" he exclaimed.
"Oh, don't be so high and mighty, Nott," Saunders snarled back. "She's in our territory. Why don't you all be good boys and girls and leave us alone."
Neville was the lone Gryffindor – or he thought he was. Septimus, accompanied by Harry, Ron, Ginny and Luna, the only Ravenclaw, had elbowed their way through the crowd of Slytherins. Wands raised as they took in the horrific scene before them. Harry was livid when he saw two witches being mauled at but incandescently furious when he noticed Hermione in little but her underwear due to her fighting and the strength of the brutes holding her tearing the clothes off her in their struggle. Harry's anger was no candle to Ron's and Ron's dimmed in the light Septimus ferocity.
"You had better step aside from her now," his lip curled in an eerily familiar gesture, stopping the boys in their laughter. "My relative is not one you wish to provoke, Masters."
"Like we would listen to a Mudblood like you, Snape!" the one called Saunders – who seemed to be the leader of the gang – sneered. "Especially one wearing the Lion!"
Ginny had rolled her eyes. Men and their testosterone battles. Silently, she waved her wand, aimed it at the four offending boys, hitting stinging hexes on their gonads causing the young men to wince and collapse on the floor. Once the witches were free, Neville ran to Daphne making sure she was not hurt, it turned out she was hurt in the scuffle. Hermione collapsed in on herself, trying to gather the remnants of her clothes. Septimus, Harry and Ginny heard her mutter: Not again, not again, not again, not again. Over and over as if she was reliving a memory rather than thinking of what had just happened.
"Hermione," Luna walked up to the distraught witch. "Come on, Hermione, let's cover you up and get you out of here."
Theo ran to Luna's side and helped the blonde beauty cover her friend up and to her feet. Septimus almost elbowed the young oink from touching his girl. Wow? Where did that come from? What about Lily? He realised he had not thought about Lily for most of the day as his mind was more preoccupied by the wonderful Hermione. A witch as good, as beautiful, as kind and, perhaps he could admit this to himself, more forgiving than Lily if some of the stories he'd heard were true. This was why her reaction puzzled him. What could she mean by: Not again?
Why did she not fight? She was bright, vivacious, powerful, he knew she would not find it difficult to fend two big wizards off her and the Greengrass girl. He knew she would do so because her nature was to be helpful, compassionate, and adorable. Even when he witnessed her bossing her friends around she was cute.
Just as he was going to step forward: before the girls managed to get to the first corner of the hospital wing two differing mews sounded. From the corner Filch stepped around and noticed how many students were out past curfew – as the majority were Slytherins he rolled his eyes. He set Mrs Norris on the floor just as a raggedy Ginger cat sauntered from the other direction. Both cats glanced at each other and, imperceptible to human knowledge, they nodded, and both ran to Severus Snape's office. Moments later Snape had appeared through the layers of night holding a lantern.
"I expected this behaviour from Potter and his crew," he looked at his younger self. "Well, well, it did not take you long to corrupt yourself with questionable companions, did it."
"HOW COULD YOU!" Septimus yelled. "You're deliberately ignoring the issue that is as big as your nose just to make fun of some Gryffindors... who is supposed to be the bigger person here?"
"I shall overlook your outburst Mr Snape," the Professor hissed. "However, I shall not overlook rule-breaking with incitement to brawling."
"BRAWLING!" Septimus screamed. "WE came upon a scene where two witches were being sexually harassed by burly boys who had them pinned to the wall. One was stripped naked in front of a large crowd of people and you have the sheer nerve, the shocking tenacity, to make it all Harry's fault for... what? I don't know what you hate about him, but he has been nothing but accommodating and pleasurable to be around!"
"It is true, there is a brain-addling potion intoxicating the air in the Gryffindor common room then?"
"HERMIONE WAS ONE OF THE WITCHES!" Harry finally bellowed backing his new friend up. "She came down here for tea and chat – or was this all some setup?"
"I am not sure what it is you are inferring, Mr Potter?"
"The ultimate humiliation, a worst memory, one could say!" Potter hissed darkly.
That made Septimus stumble as he helped Hermione gather her things. Potter had seen that incident?
"If you think I am that petty..." the Professor stopped to take a deep breath. "Who was the other witch?"
"Daphne Greengrass, sir," Pansy said. "Surprisingly Longbottom was on the scene and had managed to stall them long enough."
Now Professor Snape reacted. Daphne's parents were neutral – this was a regular scare tactic. Silvanos Greengrass was a clever Slytherin but not a racist. He was one of the few that he would not have minded losing Lily too. Daphne was sniffling in the arms of Longbottom who hushed and stroked her hair tenderly. He glanced at Parkinson – just as he suspected – Pansy was now desiring what someone else wanted. Since Draco had lost interest she was on the lookout for another big boy to hang around and it could be Longbottom. Snape almost felt sorry for the boy, then again, he never had two fairly bright, beautiful witches fight over him. The petty jealousy returned. He had misappropriated the roles. He'd often thought of Neville as Pettigrew, but it was clear he was more Lupin than Pettigrew.
"Take the girls to the Hospital wing: Mr Nott and Miss Parkinson shall take Miss Greengrass," as Neville was about to relinquish his grip Daphne curled her fingers in his robes clutching tight, refusing to budge. "Fine, Mr Nott and Mr Longbottom shall escort Miss Greengrass to the Hospital Wing," he rolled his eyes. "Mr Zabini and Miss Parkinson shall assist Miss Granger." He surveyed the four boys on the ground now stiff with the agony of the remnants of the stinging jinx that would have held their erections in semi-permanent state. "Why am I not surprised that this was the brain child of Saunders, Sanderson, Marks, and Bulstrode?"
"Sir," Lovegood's quiet voice broke through his intensity, "Hermione could not fight back sir," he ignored her like most teachers did. "She was practically naked, she still had her wand, but she refused to fight back."
"Come on, Luna," Ginny said trying to urge her friend away from what would undoubtedly be Professor Snape's wrath. "We should go back to bed now that this is done."
"Yes, but I am trying to tell Professor Snape that Hermione's been raped before," Luna said bluntly to the shock of the crowd and to Professor Snape.
Anyone who was moving had stopped. Everyone except him who took a fierce stride with each word said: "What. Do. You. Mean. Raped. Before?" he snarled as he loomed on the unperturbed Ravenclaw.
"I don't know the details, but she was definitely raped before," carrying on in her own carefree way looking at Professor Snape in the eye. Ginny tried to move Luna away. This was not something Hermione would want to spread throughout the school. Not that she now had a choice in the matter. Luna may be whispering but her voice carried, and everyone could hear. "Fourteen...?" Luna tilted her head as if thinking this through properly. "Yes, definitely when she was fourteen."
"Fourteen," Snape gasped. Who did she know at fourteen that could have...? "If it was that black beast I'll kill what's left of him."
"It was not Sirius Black, sir," Luna carried on in her clear whisper. "I'm sure he would not have committed that atrocity against a friend. It was someone else, but no one knows who."
"No one knew she was raped, Luna," Ginny said warmly still trying to manoeuvre the airy blonde away before it could get worse to protect both Hermione's privacy and Luna's future at the school. "No one seemingly, except you."
"Of course, she was, there were Hargedongscruffs all over her when she came back from school her fourth year," Luna murmured.
"Harge..." Professor started but felt his brain would short circuit if he carried on.
"Vicious red miniature Pargedongruffs. Which are purple with wild hair. The former are females and they have sharp teeth and bite – the Hargedongscruffs only swarm to a witch that has had violent attacks thrust upon them. It happened probably at the Quidditch World Cup."
In the haze of Luna's ramblings Severus tried to remember who was there that year: Lucius – no, he preferred them willing. Senior Nott; no, he was too old. Crabbe and Goyle had only managed to produce sons more by ignorance than design. Silvanos Greengrass was happily in love with Stefanie his beautiful wife and was against violence. Macna... Jackpot. Walden Macnair!
"You are certain of this, Miss Lovegood?" he asked.
"Of course," Luna picked at her blue fluffy pyjama top, "it was more than one."
More than one? "How...?"
"She is swamped – it means it has happened more than once."
Severus groaned. He had to use that year to say the second most unforgivable line he'd ever mentioned to a Gryffindor – ever: "How... how does she...?"
"Nargles started entering her aura. They fight off the Hargedongscruffs – their bite stabilises them – therefore rebalancing the witch."
Of course, he smiled a little, Nargles. "Well, I am sure you can help now."
"I will Professor, thank you. Oh, you have Nargles too. Should be wary of them, sir."
"What are they again?"
"Love bugs," Luna shrugged. "I noticed them on Neville and Daphne earlier."
Ginny was now fighting the urge to smirk and laugh. She wanted to also get to the common room and discuss how to do damage control with Harry, Ron and Septimus. Hermione would need to know that the rumour mill was not overfed with sensationalist tripe. Ginny also wanted to be there to show Hermione support. What other demons was her friend concealing from them?
"Come on, Luna, you have to get moving and go to bed."
"I noticed Harry is not swarmed by Nargles this year. You are, as is Dean Thomas..."
It went on down the hall as Luna told all who could listen who in the school had what imaginary creature surrounding them dictating what their emotional state was. Professor Snape had to give Miss Weasley credit; not everyone could put up with an eccentric like Luna for a friend, but she did. For that, Severus almost liked and admired Miss Weasley.
It was further up the stairs that Ginny heard something from Luna's mouth she did not think she would.
"Harry is swarmed by Rangles, though. They are with people that have unrequited love or is in love with someone who is totally unaware of their feelings."
"Hmm, Luna, I suppose so."
"I wonder if it's you, you had Rangles all over you before you dated Michael Corner when the Nargles took over."
Ginny rolled her eyes and hugged Luna once they reached the Ravenclaw corner. "Go to sleep, Luna, you can comment on creatures and their purpose for us Wizards and Witches tomorrow."
"Okay, goodnight, Ginny – I think of you as my sister you know."
Ginny's heart felt a little full. She loved Luna too: "I know, and you're mine in all but blood."
Ginny was about to make her way back to Gryffindor when Ron showed up.
"I don't want to find you attacked," his throat felt sore as if he'd been somewhere and screamed violently. "Come on – let's hope Hermione'll be okay."
"I hope they are both okay," Ginny said. "Greengrass was hurt too."
"Probably part of a more sinister plan."
"NO witch would make up a plan where she gets sexually assaulted, Ronald," Ginny said stiffly. She tried to cover over the slight bitch of jealousy from seeing Neville hold Daphne in his warm arms. She remembered how he awkwardly tried to kiss her in his fourth year under the mistletoe and damn her for wanting that to actually happen this year. "The witch would have made the plan, so she was not even seen at the point of the attack."
Ronald grumbled. Irked that not everyone seemed to be sensible and hating all Slytherins on principle.
"Ron," she started a little cautiously. "D-did you know Hermione had been..."
"Raped. No idea," Ron said sadly. "She did not tell any of us about it."
"I would have thought she'd have told me," Ginny whispered. "I would have respected her and kept it quiet."
"Hermione can be quite secretive – she tells us a bare minimum. As if she is trying to re-invent herself in this world or something," Ron said.
"Or perhaps," Septimus' voice interrupted them. "Hermione did not wish to keep reliving awful, harrowing memories time and time again. There is nothing worse than having to rehash the same trauma's."
"I understand that, Septimus," Ginny said quietly. She felt raped by Tom in her first year. "I do, truly, but I have been through my own hell – as has Harry – why could she not trust us?"
"When the whole school knows, I am sure she would explain. Your loopy friend saw to that!"
"HEY!" Ron poked a wand at Septimus. "LUNA HAS FAUGHT WITH US, BRAVELY I MAY HASTEN TO ADD. SHE'S NOT LOOPY!"
"Fine, I am sure I will change my mind once I get to know her more, but on first impressions she is rather... odd."
"That is a rather poor generalisation, Septimus," Ron said stiffly. Then ruined his one of his rare astute moments by saying: "Do you think Neville really is stupid enough to like a Slytherin?"
"Neville is his own man and can like whom he likes," Septimus said. "Why should he stay away from Miss Greengage if..."
"...Grass," Ginny corrected. "Miss Greengrass."
"Ah yes," of course Septimus knew who Daphne was. What irked him was having to pretend to not know. Acting as if he was a brand-new student in a school he knew most of the secrets too was excruciatingly difficult. "Greengrass. As far as I am aware are they not both from powerful Pureblood families?"
"Yes," Ron spat.
"Then it should not be an issue. It is up to them and their parents or guardians what goes on."
That silenced Ron but he still twisted his wand in his hands: "She's still a Slytherin," he mumbled. "I don't trust her one inch. We have to keep on the look-out for him in case she breaks his heart."
"Weasley," Septimus smirked. "Shut up!"
Surprisingly, Ron did.
AN: Next chapter, Hermione is asked to talk to McGonagall and Poppy about Luna's perceptive observation. Whilst Hermione wishes to remain silent about it she knows she mustn't. The Dark Lord brings Snape to a solo meeting where he asks his 'devoted' follower why he'd never mentioned a magical Muggleborn relative before now and orders Snape to bring him into the fold as a spy on Potter.
I understand how raw a topic this is considering the Harvey Weinstein Scandals - I also do not wish to trivialise, romantacise, or make it into a frivolity. I was sexually molested by a boy in my school. It was brief but I felt dirty for a long while afterwards...
I was a bit nervous of using Luna as the one who reveals what Hermione went through but I have a feeling that when Luna saw Hermione scared and afraid her father would have explained it the way she describes it to cover-up the atrocity of the act, with no one to contradict him she would believe him. I will not have Hermione hate Luna for her act of indiscretion or...maybe help? With Luna one never truly knows but Hermione would know that her Ravenclaw friend meant no maliciousness.