29th August 1998
"I can't do this!" Hermione' voice calls out as she focusses on the her father probbing through her mind.
He released his grip and stood back.
"You have to Aletha. If you don't, then anybody could find out your secret." He whispers. "Legilimens."
Hermione screams and she trys to force up the walls but her father's power is too much. She puts out her hand to push him back but he is across the room. Memories from the war enter her mind and it pulls the last straw.
Her scream is louder now. Her palms begin to light up and she brings them up to her head before shoving them right out in front of her again. A bright light emmits from her hands and a distant crash is heard.
She opens her eyes and sees her father sprawled on his back atop the broken coffee table.
Her father stares up at her with shock. Her eyes seemed to glow an almost translucent blue as her ragged breathing becomes calm again and her eyes seems to flicker back to the usual honey brown.
"What the hell happened here?" Hermione's mother calls out as she enters the living room shocked.
"It seems," said her father, "that Aletha is growing into her new powers."
"But this was never meant to happened for a least another two weeks. What happened?" Hermione asked, shocked at the revelation.
"There were rumours," her mother started off again, "that when a young witch is growing into her new powers, she had side-effects couple of weeks before it happened. It was never proven though."
"And you never thought to even mention it?" Hermione's voice hisses as she realises what danger she could have been in.
"We didn't believe is necessary." Her father said. Totally unaware of what the problem was.
"I'll be in my room. Don't expect me to come out for a while. I need to process." And with that, Hermione turned haughtily on her heels and stamped up the staircase.
"Got your attitude that one."
29th August 1998
Draco was not enjoying his break before school. It had nearly been 4 months since the destruction of Voldemort and he would be heading back to school in 3 days.
His mother had been pardoned, with testimony from Harry Potter, who could refuse? His father, on the other hand had been sentenced to life in Azkaban. It was a step down from the Dementors kiss but yet again with the testimony of the saviour of the wizarding world it had been downgraded.
Draco could go visit his father, yet he saw no need to as it would only bring back the bad memories of his childhood and his time as one of Voldemort's pawns.
Alas, he did have fond memories of his father. One was of him sitting in front of the family tree with him and asking questions of each person. His father would always reply with gusto at the ones who kept the bloodline going and disguist at the ones who betrayed it.
But yet, that memory was still riddled with blood superiority and dark discussions. Nothing about his father was light in any sense. He seemed to be a heartless man and Draco was upset that he did not get the kiss.
Yes Lucius was his father. But he cared no much for him then for the next muggleborn to pass him. As far as Lucius was concerned, Draco to him was only a way of carrying on the bloodline.
He had never thought it really necessary to follow his father's orders early in life but as he became older he realised how dangerous it was not to.
He figured it out the first time he was hit with crucio.
"Draco? Draco? Honestly. Draco Malfoy. Get your head out of the clouds." His mother's exasperated voice bites into his head.
"Sorry mother." He mumble incoherently.
"Honestly. Now are you all ready for school tomorrow? I know you do not wish to go back but I believe it will be good for you. If only you could see that." Narcissa Black, having reverted back to her maiden name rambles on.
"Mum, I'll be fine. I've got everything ready." Draco sighed. He was not looking forward to the school year ahead. The golden trio would return and he as a former death eater would be exiled.
"Please, Draco. I know you don't want to do this but once you get your N.E.W.T.S I swear, we will go anywhere you like. Away from here." His mothers gentle voice broke his thoughts yet again.
31st August 1998
"Oh Alex. It's just so terrible. I can't believe Aletha is heading back to Hogwarts tomorrow." Laina sobbed into Alex's shoulder.
"Shh, she'll be fine." Alex soothed his wife.
"But she has not even come out of her room yet. What if she hates us Alex? I can't stand the thought." Laina looked up, regal as ever.
"Don't worry mum. I'm sure I don't hate you." Hermione says standing in the enormous stairwell.
Laina gasped and looked towards Hermione.
"Oh Aletha! I'm so sorry! We should have warned you. Please don't hate me!" She ran over and grabbed Hermione or should I say Aletha into a hug.
"It's alright mum. Now. I leave for Hogwarts first thing tomorrow. Is there anything else I should be aware of?" Hermione asked.
"No. I don't believe so."
1st September 1998
"Now come on Aletha we will miss the train if you don't hurry up." Laina called up the stairs to her daughter.
"Sorry, I'm coming mum. I just had to shrink my trunk." Hermione raced down the stairs to see her parents looking as pround as peacocks.
"We raised such a beautiful daughter." Alex turns toward Laina.
"I know." A ghost of a smile on her lip.
"Way to be sappy. Come on. I need to speak to my friends before I get on the train." She grabbed both her parents hands and apparatated, making sure not to let go.
"Aletha Cristina Elswood! Never do that again!" Her mother scolded. "Oh sorry. Hermione Jean Granger!"
Hermione laughed. "It's alright mum. I'm Aletha."
And from that moment on that's the only person she wanted to be.
Hermione or now Aletha smiled at her mother and pulled her into a tight grip hug.
"I'll miss you mum." She said softly.
"I'll miss you too sweetheart." Laina pulled away from Aletha and had a watery smile on her face.
Aletha slowly faced her father before pulling him into a hug as well.
"Miss you as well dad." She quickly let go as not to cause her father to fall into tears. "I'll see you guys on Christmas holidays!"
And then she ran off.
1st September 1998
"Where is she Harry? It's the first day of term. She's just bloody abandoned us!"
Well, in Harry's opinion, Ron was taking it a little over the top. Yes Hermione had gone to Australia and never came back but knowing her, she wouldn't dare miss a day of school.
"Calm down mate. I'm sure she'll be there today." Harry tried to reason with Ron.
He had found that Ron had developed quite a crush on Hermione during the time away from home. But when she had gone off to Australia it was pretty much rejection for Ron.
For Harry it was obvious to see that Hermione just wasn't interested but he would have been lying if he said he didn't hope that she suddenly developed feelings for him.
"Come on Harry! We've got to get there early." Ro said and grabbed his arm.
Off to Hogwarts we go.
1st September 1998
Hogwarts Express Carriage 4
Aletha got comfortable in the cabin not yet ready to try and find Harry and Ron. She had left and not owled them once.
Of course she had received owls asking where she was and how she was doing but for the time she was in Australia she just wanted to live muggle style, of course with a little bit of magic.
So she found herself alone in her carriage, a book in her hand and her bushy hair tied up into a ponytail. She was still worried. Only 19 more days and she'd be a completely different person.
She bit her lip and started to read.
The Elswood's are an extinct pure blood family. They have not been spotted since the death of Alex, Laina and Aletha 17 years ago.
The Manor they live in can be transported anywhere and from where it last stood it has disappeared...
1st September 1998
Hogwarts Express Carriage 7
"Harry, she's not here." Ron said annoyed. It had been nearly 4 months since she disappeared and he wasn't happy.
His crush had developed over the hunt. It had been going on longer but he refused to admit it so when she disappeared he was sent into a panic attack.
Hermione had told them that she was going to find her parents and that it wouldn't take that long but 3 months later and there still wasn't a sign of her.
Ron had expected that by the time they were halfway to Hogwarts that she would have appeared if she was on the train.
"Ron, she's probably in another carriage reading. You need to calm down. You'll see her at Hogwarts." His little sister soothed him. She leant back into Harry's arms and rested her head on his shoulder.
How he wished that he and Hermione could be like that.
1st September 1998
"Good evening all students." Headmistress McGonagall's voice called over the chattering of the students. The new first years had just been sorted and everyone was excited for the new year.
"Before we start," she continued. "I must ask something of all returning 7th and 8th year students."
"You must all be resorted."