A/N: So I know I left it on a cliffhanger, even if everyone knew it was coming, so I'm posting this even though I could get the end of this chapter to flow right. I've spent the last few days playing with it to no avail so here it is. Let me know what you think.
Laying down on the soft grass, I kept our hands connected and she says the only thing that she can think of that would have me this sad, "We're not going to be seeing each other anymore, are we?"
Without realizing it, tears begin to fall from my eyes and I see tears welling up in her eyes. I know that I must do this, that any separation we will go through is not permanent, but to see my mate with tears falling from her eyes, is the most painful thing I can imagine.
"Hermione … I'm so sorry." I somehow manage to get out.
"Why, Fleur? Did I do something wrong? I can fix it. We can fix it together, I promise. Just please …. Please don't leave!" She said as she grabbed onto my arm. Moving closer to bury her face on my shoulder.
Wrapping my arm around her, I try to explain, "I don't want to. I really don't. You have done nothing wrong. Please know this. We just found each other too soon. You will understand more as time goes on, but this is not something we can fix. It is something that must be. My Grandmere explained that we must. Our bond will keep us together even with the distance, but we have to grow without being dependent on each other."
I knew I would not get an answer as she cried harder as I said the words she knew I would.
I'm not certain how long I held her or how long we cried in each other's arms, but I knew my maman would be collecting me soon.
Pulling back, I reached into my pocket to retrieve the necklace I had created for her.
"This is for you. You must keep it with you always. It will be your connection to me and it will help the pain ease while I am away. Promise me you'll never take it off." I pleaded as I put the necklace around her neck.
"I promise." She said as she grasped the pendent in her small hand as she looked at it. Looking back at me, she continued, "I have something for you too."
She pulled a small box from her pants pocket and opened it.
Inside was the most beautiful ring, I'd ever seen. Taking it out of the box, she held my right hand and slipped it onto my ring finger before grasping my hand.
Looking me in the eye, she said, "You can never take this off either. Like I promised you, you have to promise me."
Nodding my head, I squeezed her hand and replied, "Never. I promise."
Nodding back, she stood and pulled me up with her before wrapping her arms around me.
We stood there with our arms around each other tightly and our heads resting against each other.
"Fleur. We must be going." Maman called before the back door of house.
Raising my head, I sighed and pulled Hermione with me back towards her house, stopping in front of my maman.
"Hermione, I am so sorry this has to happen. Your mum will explain some things to you once we leave. Please know, we will always be with you and you will always have a place in our family. If you are ever in trouble, know that you only have to call out to us and we will find you." Maman said as she knelt in front of my mate.
Hermione just nodded and wrapped her arms around my maman to say goodbye. I moved to Leila and wrapped my arms around her waist.
She placed her hand on my cheek and pulled my face up towards her, "You are strong enough for this, Fleur Isabelle Delacour. You are willing to do what must be done even as it causes you pain and that is the trustiest sign of love. She will not forget you. I will make sure of it and when you are able, I will proudly welcome you as a daughter in our family." She told me as she cried for us as well.
I didn't say anything. I'd had enough words spoken about this so I just hugged her again and stepped back.
Hermione and her mere walked us to the floo. As my maman and I stepped into the fireplace, I looked her and said, "I am always with you, mon amour, and I will find you as soon as possible."
Before she had a chance to say anything, the flames of the floo activated and we were gone.
Leaving the fireplace in our home, I see my Grandmere and Papa are there waiting.
I ignore them both and my mere as she stepped out beside me and make my way upstairs and into my room. Closing the door behind me, I lean against it and slide down, wrapping my arms around my knees as I sob.
Fleur. It's the only thing I think as I watch her and her mother vanish knowing I have no idea when I'll see her again. I don't realize that I sat down in front of the fireplace.
My mum sits next to me and pulls me into her arms. I don't fight the comfort she's trying to give even if it's the wrong set of arms I want.
I had no idea how long we sat there, but I just replaying the conversations with Fleur and Apolline over and over in my head.
Holding tightly to the pendant of the necklace given to me, I asked my mother, "What were the things you're supposed to explain to me?"
"What?" My mother asked confused.
"Apolline … She said you'd explain more things to me."
"Oh. Yes. While you and Fleur were talking, she explained that you should start training as a way to help with the pain that would begin from the separation."
Nodding, I asked, "What kind of training?"
"She gave me some pamphlets for wizarding gyms that teach kids different types of self-defense and different training. I told her I'd let you look those over. She was adamant that you learn archery. Isabelle said that it was a skill you must learn and gave me the number of an instructor who is awaiting a call to schedule that."
Standing in front of my mother, I looked at the pamphlets and replied, "Alright. I think I'll go look these over and let you know. I'd like to start as soon as possible as well as work on learning as much as possible before I start school. This is as good a time as any to get a head start."
Putting a hand on my waist, she smiled and answered, "Of course. We'll go to the library after considering the classes you pick and get started, dear."
I just nodding again and made my way to my room. All the while feeling the profound sense of longing that I knew I would not rid until I was able to see Fleur again.
Time Skip … April 02nd, 1984
"Hermione! You need to hurry with your work, dear. Your kickboxing classes start soon and we still have to pick up the books from the library that are available." My mother called as I rushed through the last problem.
In the last three years, I'd learned things that most muggle kids learn in middle school and I'd been introduced the great Albus Dumbledore after going to the Ministry with my dad. I still remember my awe when he gave me a copy of Hogwarts: A History to read while I was waiting on dad to finish up some work.
I'd been fascinated with learning what I'd actually get to study at Hogwarts. Dad said he'd try and find some books I could learn from to check out and they were finally ready.
Making my way to the front door, I slipped on my shoes as my mum held the door open for us.
"Do you think lessons will take long today? I want to get started on the new books." I asked as my mum buckled me into the car before making her way to her seat. I knew with my being advanced, she likes to do small things for me because she thinks I'm growing up too fast so I always let her.
"I think it'll take as long as it normally does and that you should try and make some new friends outside of your training buddy. If you call him a friend. Dear, you've shunned all the kids your father tried to introduce you to. Kids you'd be going to school with, mind you. I know you miss Fleur, but being alone won't help time pass any quicker. Neither will throwing yourself into your training or studies." My mother lamented as she started to back out of the driveway.
Just mentioning Fleur caused the pain I'd been feeling these past years to almost throb with intensity. I grabbed hold of the pendant around the necklace she gave to me the last time we saw each other, it was cold to the touch as always. It was something I did anytime she crossed my mind, which was often if I didn't have something to occupy myself.
Putting it under my shirt, I looked at my mother, "Other kids think I'm weird because I'm smarter than they are. Like that Ronald boy. He made fun of me and I don't think it's fair. Fleur understood me and never judged me for something I can't help. How is being smarter or wanting to spend time learning instead of playing with him, my fault?"
"I know you can't help it, dear. There is nothing wrong with your desire for knowledge, but I think the isolation will cause you more harm than good when you go to school." My mother replied as she took me to my kickboxing class.
I didn't reply, but we've had this conversation before so I knew she wasn't expecting one.
Before long, we were at the dojo. Letting her unbuckle my seat and climbing out, I looked at her.
"I'll try, mum, but I make no promises."
She smiled and smoothed my hair back in acceptance.
Once inside, I changed and started on my drills as more kids started to arrive.
"Hello." I heard two voices say in tandem from behind me.
Turning, I saw two platinum blondes standing there. Based on their outfit, I knew they were in my class, but I couldn't remember seeing them before.
"Um, hello." I replied confused. No one had ever come and talk to me unless it was during the lesson.
"I'm Luna and this is my sister, Kiyoko." One of them said.
I looked closely and saw one was paler than the other, that was the one who spoke, Luna.
I held out my hand and stated, "Hermione."
They each took turns shaking my hand before Luna spoke again, "I've never seen so many fairies around one person before. You must be very special."
"I'm sorry?" I asked. I had no idea what she was talking about.
"Oh. They haven't presented themselves to you yet, but my family and I can see them." She continued.
"Okay … Thanks for telling me, I guess." I said as I turned to keep working on my drills.
"You're welcome." Luna replied as they began to work as well, only they set up next to me.
"Why are you setting up here?" I asked before I could stop my curious question from escaping.
"Well, you're quite good at this and I'd like to get know you. If you're important to the fairies, I would like to know why." Luna said.
I started to say something, but our instructor came to the front and the lesson began.
Ignoring the blondes, I began to move through the drills and stations that were set up as our instructor directed us.
Before long, the lesson had ended and I quickly made my way over to my mother.
"Are you ready for your archery lesson, honey?" she asked as drank from the bottle of water she handed to me.
"Yes, I am. Did you pick up the books, mum?" I asked as I pulled on my socks and shoes.
Before either of us could speak, I heard a familiar voice behind me again.
"Hermione, we were wondering if you'd like to come over sometime." Luna said.
I turned and saw that she was standing there with her sister and who I assumed by the resemblance, her father.
"Um …" I said, unsure if I should be spending time with them.
I knew from my brief association with Ronald and Harry that kids my age were not accepting if they thought you were weird. I thought Luna and her sister, who did not seem to speak, were weird, but they had this calming presence when they focused their attention on me that I was unused to.
"She'd love to." My mum replied, "How about we exchange numbers and we can set something up."
I knew she was eager for me to spend time with people my age, but she did not even know these people.
"Xenophilius Lovegood" the man introduced himself as he held out his hand for my mum and continued, "Everyone calls me Xeno."
"Leila Granger" my mum replied and shook his hand.
"I can tell by your energy. The girls will be great friends." Xeno stated.
I just looked at Luna and Kiyoko and wondered if that was true.
A/N: Decided to forgo the French. French text will now be appearing as the example.
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