|Trapped by the Web
Author: SeekerOfDeath PM
Circumstances find Hermione locked in the time of the Founders... After months of search, she finally finds a way home, but will she want to leave the spider's web? Hermione::SalazarRated: Fiction M - English - Romance/Drama - Hermione G. & Salazar S. - Chapters: 5 - Words: 13,422 - Reviews: 171 - Favs: 150 - Follows: 253 - Updated: 02-07-08 - Published: 01-09-06 - id: 2745754
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Edit Note: I am going back to fix up little things in chapters 1-4. Nothing huge has changed, just a little grammar things.Edit Note 2: Going through, there are a few minuscule things that don't exactly fit seamlessly into Rowling's books. If you notice them, cheers. I call artistic freedom over those tiny little parts. To go back and change them now that I've noticed would be time-consuming and they're not even big enough to really be a bother.
I hope you enjoy!
Trapped by the Web
The library was quiet, deserted. The best atmosphere, in Hermione's opinion. Granted, it did take until around midnight for the blessed silence to fall upon the dusted bookcases, but it was well worth the wait. Her candle flickered as she let out a contented sigh, her quill resting still on her paper for a moment as she closed her eyes to let it all sink in. If only the library could always be like this, she'd be in here even more frequently than she already was.
She smiled as she set ink to parchment again, deeply engrossed in her essay within minutes. If you had asked anyone at Hogwarts, they would all say the same thing. One of the only major faults that Hermione Granger possessed was her obsessive studying. She, though, made a point of ignoring this. None of them would ever understand it, the pure bliss that taking in all that knowledge was to her. It was like a drug, and she was addicted.
If any of them had been muggle-borns, maybe they could understand it a little better. For someone who had grown up being taught that magic was just a story, that it would never truly happen, Hogwarts was a fairy tale. Naturally she'd want to learn everything she could. Of course, she had been almost as addicted to her own school before getting the letter, but that was just a side note to her.
She sighed in exasperation as her writing was interrupted with a painful cramp in her hand, and she had to set down her quill as it started to shake in her grip.
She whispered into the abandoned library, trying to massage out the knots with her other hand. Now, as an avid writer she was quite used to hand cramps, but these were unlike any she had ever felt. They were sharp bursts of pain, and if she didn't know better, she would almost say they were climbing up her arm. At first she pushed off the idea as insane, but soon the pain was telling her otherwise, now pounding in her every muscle. She crumpled into her chair, moaning out in pain. She glanced quickly down at her writing hand that was now pulsing in non-describable pain, and the sight that met her eyes sent a gasp out of her dry mouth. Bright as daylight on her hand, looking as if it had been burned into her skin, was the Hogwarts crest. Curiosity fought with agony for a few horrible minutes, and then, her entire world went black.
"My fault? As far as I can tell, you hold as much blame as I do!"
"Boys, please do try to keep your voices down. We don't know how hurt this young woman might be, and yelling will only--"
"Well, I wouldn't need to be yelling if someone hadn't tried to pin this on me."
The voices were like hammers, pounding against the inside of her head, and Hermione dearly wished that they would just shut up. She tried to roll over, to pull her pillow over her head, or something. But she found her body was as heavy as lead, and unwilling to listen. She tried to open her mouth, to call out to them, or curse them, whichever came first. Her throat was dry, though, and all she found coming out was a strangled, rasping gasp.
She instantly felt hands on her, and she supposed someone was examining her. Given the circumstances, she could do nothing, but she was thankful for the silence that had reigned since she had opened her mouth. Now if only the rest of her muscles would obey her. Starting with something easy, she slowly cracked open her eyes, shivering at the feeling of the sticky sleepies clinging to her eyelashes as she slowly opened them fully. Through the time it took to allow her eyes to get used to the light, the hands on her had finished the examination, and she was now hearing whispered spells, and tingles from the resulting spell.
To say she was surprised when she took in her surroundings was an understatement. She was laying in a bed, very much familiar to that which resided in the Hospital wing, but the room was quiet different. The walls were pure white, not the homely gray they used to be. The residents, there were four of them, were also quiet different. For one, she didn't recognize a single one of them, and for another, they were dressed...Not so much oddly, but unusually. Their robes were lavished with detail, embroidery delicately gracing each of the trims. They were all staring at her, anticipation and curiosity schooled onto their features, with the exception of the man in the corner of the room, who simply looked bored.
"W-water..." She nearly croaked out, knowing that if she had questions, they would be better answered after she could speak. Unease settled darkly on her as she watched them, slowly sipping on the glass the dark haired woman in front of her had conjured up.
"You're probably very confused right now." Came a kind voice, attached to the plump, friendly looking woman that was sitting at the foot of her bed. Hermione nodded, wide eyes trying to watch all of them at once.
"Well, the half-wit over there decided that we were going to try some untested spell he made up, and it ended up with you here." Came the curt, cool voice from the corner.
"Oh, shut up Salazar! Its not like I could do it without four willing participants! And, if I have to remind you again, you were one of them!"
Hermione jumped at the name, her eyes, if possible, getting even wider as she let her gaze fly over all of them. "S-salazar?" She asked unbelievingly, hoping she had heard him wrong."Y-You mean...Salazar Slytherin?"
He raised an elegant eyebrow at her. "Yes."
She barely even noticed she had passed out again.
But Madame Pomfrey's hands had never felt so slender and young, and the voices in the room were most decidedly the deep timbre of two full grown men, and when had she ever known Ginny to use the word "Sweethearts"?
She lay in the bed for what seemed like hours, forcing her breathing to remain calm and normal, so that there was no observations that she was awake. Their words were soon lost to her as she succumbed to her own thoughts, and she stayed like this until a grating silence finally met her ears.
She cracked an eye open, braving what she might find in the room, hoping she was ready for it this time. A wave of relief crashed over her as she only found one figure in the room, hunched over a standing tray on the other side of the room. She may have been lost and confused, but at least now there was only one person to deal with. She was tempted to snap her eyes shut when she saw the lady moving, but forced herself to stay still, staring up at her with her own chocolate depths.
"Good morning! I was wondering when you'd wake up." A small, dainty smile flitted onto her lips as she gracefully walked over, positioning herself in a wooden stool next to her bed. "How are you feeling?"
"F-fine...I suppose." Hermione stumbled out, her throat feeling raw just from those words. She sat herself up against the headboard slowly, never breaking her eyes from the woman in front of her. She licked her lips, her body tensing just from the thought of asking what she was about to ask.
"Where am I?"
Hermione was not one whose voice usually wavered. She had prided herself on always being calm and composed, even when facing daunting tasks. Through her sixth, and part of her seventh year, she had lived through more than any person her age could ever dream of. War had taken away precious memories and experiences of her life that she could never get back, and yet, she was still Hermione Granger – Ice queen, as the younger students had started to call her during the days that war was looming on the horizon. After the war was done, and she was called in for witness on the trials of suspected spies, even then she was without a single crackle in her voice. Had just a few months of freedom, where she was back in the hands of books and study instead of battle and death turned her so easily frayed? Had the peaceful age that had settled upon the wizarding world really put her in the circumstance that her voice would crack from such an easy question as 'Where am I?'
The woman across from her, however, seemed instantly to understand. She reached forward, patting her on the knee. "We figured it would be difficult once you woke. Before I say anything, though, I would like to know. Do you know of magic?" She seemed to be picking her words carefully, and it occurred to Hermione that this woman didn't know if she was a witch or not.
"I'm not a muggle." She said, her voice slowly seeming to be getting control over itself.
"Ah, good then." Her entire demeanor seemed to relax. "I figured as much, seeing as you knew Salazar. If you could tell me what family you are from then, dear, I will arrange for you to return to your estate immediately." She was standing now, fiddling with the tray she had been at earlier, looking through various vials, labeling them, it seemed. "To answer your question, though, you are in a castle in England. I assume you are from England?" She saw the almost imperceptible nod that Hermione gave and continued. "It is still under immeasurable construction, but this," She gestured around the room, "place will soon turn out to be one of the greatest wizarding schools known to mankind." There was a definite pride in her voice and face as she talked, her eyes seemed alight at the idea.
"Hogwarts..." Hermione whispered, though she bit her tongue immediately after. The woman – Rowena, she had guessed by now – had spun around, her deep blue eyes set on Hermione's. A chill ran through her veins at the sudden gripping thought that she had no idea what to say. No idea how to explain her being there, or how she had just muttered the name of a school that wasn't even finished yet. How much would her presence here ruin in the future? She would have liked now more than ever to believe the whimsical research that people were trying to prove in her time, that any time travel accidents were truly meant to happen, but could she really afford to do that?
Her thoughts were cut short, however, by the answering voice of Rowena.
"What did you just say?"
Talk about having to make a split second decision. Hermione rung her hands in her sheet, before realizing that this would only make her situation look worse. She flattened out her hands, smoothing out the wrinkles she had caused.
"H-hogwarts." She repeated dumbly, hoping to give herself more time to think. The other lady, however, simply stood there sternly, obviously awaiting explanation. "L-look..." She started softly. "I don't know how I got here, or why... And I'm not even sure I should be saying anything, either, but I really don't know what else to do...I'm sure you're wondering how I know the name of your school, how I know Salazar..." Hermione took a deep breath, taking one last moment to pray she wasn't royally screwing up before going on. "My name is Hermione Granger, and I go to Hogwarts, School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The only thing is – I go to it in the year 1989. I was in the library, working on one of my essay's, when the crest suddenly appeared on my hand, and I was aching all over... The next thing I knew, I was here."
Silence reigned the room, and Hermione sat nervously watching Rowena, chewing on her bottom lip. "You believe me, don't you?"
"Yes, yes of course!" Rowena seemed to have turned from shocked and silent to glittering and excited in moments. "We thought you had merely messed up an apparation, and got damaged by our barriers, but this--"
Hermione felt a dash of panic run through her at Rowena's scholarly excitement, her face draining at how it nearly glowed off of her.
"I'm guessing you have no idea how to send me back?"
"Send you back...Heavens, no." Her face seemed to fall, like she was forcing herself to remember that Hermione was, indeed, not at all happy about this. "What you're talking about – Time travel – Its nearly as impossible as taming a werewolf!"
"That's what I thought..." Hermione said bitterly, her mind assisting in telling her that in her time, taming a werewolf simply took a dose of potion once a month.
Next to her, she could tell that Rowena was trying hard to reign in her excitement, and Hermione felt a small smile tugging at her lips at just how much the woman reminded her of herself. Lord knew how many times Hermione had killed herself while trying to hold back from figuring something out that she desperately wanted to know, but knew that she shouldn't ask. She was, after all, almost sorted into Ravenclaw.
"Oh, go on." Hermione finally sighed out. "Ask away. I just want you to know, my answers will be limited. I'm not going to risk jeopardizing anything in the future."
She almost laughed at the nearly ecstatic face in front of her, and settled herself in to what was sure to be a long bout of questioning.
It took her a good fifteen minutes to reach the great hall, where she could clearly hear the sounds of battle from the other side of the huge, oak doors. She took a deep breath, then quickly pushed the door open, wand brandished for whatever she would find.
Frustration rolled in rather quickly at the sight, and she very nearly stamped on her wand. In front of her, like a couple of unruly schoolboys, stood Salazar and Godric, locked in a 'fiery duel'. The great hall was in shambles, but it was obvious by the looks on their faces that they didn't care the slightest bit. Of course, the looks weren't that one would normally find on two men pointing their wands on each other. No, of course they wouldn't be serious. The two idiots were smiling, having fun, no less. Hermione was slightly bitter that she had gotten all frazzled and worried for nothing, but it soon drained away as she stood there watching them.
All the stories she had heard, read, everything in the books and tales spoke of hatred between Slytherin and Gryffindor, of how they were broken apart from a great friendship. And now, here she was, witnessing a fight between the two, but one that was obviously meant for fun. Slipping her wand into the pocket of the nightgown that Rowena had loaned her, she leaned against the door frame, watching with a small smile on her face.
At first glance, the two seemed even in power, but through observation, she soon started to deduct things from the two, a habit she had gotten into when watching people fight.
Salazar wasn't nearly as fast as Godric, but his variety of spells was definitely the larger one. He was a strategic man, while Godric was simply throwing every spell he could at him. While they were both fit, Godric seemed the more sturdy of the two, as well as the more agile.
She could tell they were starting to wear out, and she wondered just how long they had been going before she had heard them. Sweat was running down their faces, and their bodies started to sag with fatigue. Their breaths bounced off the stone walls, and eventually, they were standing still, staring straight at each other. Both were tense, waiting.
Hermione leaned forward slightly, her eyes fixed upon them. It was obvious that the first to break from their stand still would be the winner. She wished she could see Salazar's face, see if it was as entwined in concentration as Godric's, but he was facing with his back to her.
It happened so quick, she didn't even see him move. Godric's wand had flicked upwards, and before she even had time to blink, a brilliant blue curse was flying across the room, accompanied by a blinding white from Salazar's.. The two curses hit home against each other, struggling still for mere seconds before splitting apart again, flying again with amazing speed.
Hermione let out a shriek, throwing herself to the ground, just barely missing a collision with the wayward spell. She could smell the slightly singed hair that fell in her hair, but thankfully it was only a few strands. She lifted herself up slowly, sitting cross legged on the ground, her curls laying haphazardly in her face.
Two surprised faces were turned her way, and a crimson red blush found itself home on her cheeks.
"U-um...Hello." She offered meekly, looking up at them as innocently as she could.
"What do you think you are doing here?" Salazar's voice was cold, and his eyes even colder as he glared at her, his carefree expression from earlier gone without a trace. She almost shivered at his cold look, before reminding herself she had seen far worse. She lifted her chin defiantly.
"Excuse me if I was surprised when it sounded like an elephant was trying to destroy everything breakable in this place." She said, lifting herself to her feet with as much dignity as one in a pink laced nightgown can.
Her words had gained a chuckle from Godric, but only a cold stare from Salazar. She simply glared back, then rolled her eyes and looked away. She shifted on her feet, then turned back to look at them. "Why were you dueling, anyways?"
Godric's simple answer confused her, and she blinked. "Excuse me?"
"To who gets the tower for their part of the school. We haven't been able to declare a winner for days now."
Hermione just stared unbelievingly. They were that childish? Men.
"So, you fight over it? Why can't you just...Flip a knut or something?"
The looks she retrieved from both of them could have curdled cheese, she thought, and she chuckled a little, then cleared her throat.
"Right, well... You two have fun, then!" She knew she sounded like an idiot as she spun on her heel and dashed from the room, but she didn't very much care. Right now, all she wanted was that warm, comfortable bed again.