|A Marriage Of Inconvenience
Author: BiteMeTechie PM
From the bowels of my hard drive, I give you a SnapeOCDracoOC horror, written in response to the marriage law challenge.Rated: Fiction M - English - Chapters: 4 - Words: 6,244 - Reviews: 2 - Follows: 1 - Published: 06-12-07 - id: 3589077
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
A Marriage Of Inconvenience-Chapter Four:Fidelus Imperialus
Vanessa hopped from foot to foot in the corridor outside her room, waiting anxiously for any sign that Hermione Granger was nearby. She strained her ears, waiting to hear those tell-tale foot-falls that would signal the arrival of the Gryffindor. She was dreadfully uncomfortable, having been under the Disillusionment charm for far too long a time, and was feeling more antsy than she had in a good long while.
As an added bonus, when she had fled from the library with the stolen books in her possession, a particularly nasty spell had been activated by the library itself. A barbaric one that had been put into effect back when the school was first founded, that was meant to keep students from making off with restricted section books without permission.
The aforementioned spell cut several nasty gashes into the perpetrators hands as punishment for thievery. The gashes wouldn't heal correctly until the books were returned to their proper places and the thief had admitted their wrongdoing.
All in all, Vanessa thought it to be a positively savage charm, one that, had she been aware of it's existence before, she would have protested it's use. So, here Vanessa stood, in the cold dark school corridor, with her hands bleeding furiously, waiting for Hermione Granger.
She should have done the sensible thing and gone inside her room to wait, but she didn't. As she stood there in the hallway, the blood from her hands making faint 'drip drip drip' noises as it hit the stone floor, she wondered why she didn't retreat into her room.
Because if she went into her room, she would pace anxiously, worrying about Hermione's whereabouts, and whether or not she had been caught by Filch. At least out here in the hallway, she could keep a look-out, keep her mind occupied with thoughts other than the subject that was covered in the precious books that she held so closely against her chest. It was, in the great scheme of things, just something to do.
Vanessa tried to stay alert as she scanned the hallway, but it was hard. She'd already been up for three days studying for her N.E.W.T.s, then she had found out about the Marriage law, and now, she was waiting for her partner in crime to arrive so that they could conspire together about the new law.
The pure adrenaline that was coursing through her veins was the only thing that was keeping her afloat, the only thing that was keeping her conscious.
Vanessa's ears perked up as she heard the tiniest of scurrying noises coming her way. For about half a second, she was apprehensive, thinking that perhaps it was Filch, but her fears were put to rest when she heard the the approaching person stumble and curse loudly in a decidedly Hermione Granger-ish voice.
It was at this precise moment that Vanessa decided to remove the charm from herself and that which concealed her bedroom door. It was quite a feat, considering she still had to juggle the books in her bloodied and slippery hands, but she managed it none-the-less. She glanced anxiously about herself before calling out to the other girl.
"Come on!" She urged in a harsh whisper, casting a wary glance first down the corridor to her left and then to the right.
Vanessa felt a soft puff of air pass by her and through the doorway, which she took as an indication that Hermione had passed her and entered her bedroom. She looked around once more before she retreated through the doorway. She dropped the precious books unceremoniously onto the floor near the door so that she could shut it tightly, and then lock and ward it behind her.
"You certainly don't take any chances do you," Granger said lightly, referring to Shore's incredibly thorough warding of her bedroom door.
Vanessa spun on the Gryffindor, looking at her accusingly, "What the bloody hell took you so long?!"
Hermione took on the stance of someone about to launch into a defensive argument, "I'll have you know I was avoiding-my God, what happened to your hands!?"
Vanessa looked down at the offending appendages, shocked by the sheer volume of blood that was on them, "I.." she laughed weakly, "I didn't think it was so bad."
Hermione set her books aside and walked to Vanessa, gently taking her wounded hands in her own uninjured ones. The Ravenclaw cringed at the feeling of Hermione's fingers working over the cuts, cleaning them with a white cotton handkerchief she had retrieved from her pocket.
After most of the blood was wiped away, Hermione could see the extent of the damage that had been done. She huffed angrily, quietly cursing whoever had put this barbaric charm into effect as she removed her wand from her pocket and transfigured a bunch of bandages with which to wrap Vanessa's hands.
Vanessa, meanwhile was staring down at the cuts which sliced across her palm at several odd angles, forming a similar pattern. After several seconds of considering them, she came to realize that they formed words.
"I will not take what does not belong to me" was etched into her flesh.
She winced as Hermione wrapped up one of her hands thoroughly, placing an antiseptic charm upon the wounds so they wouldn't become infected.
"Didn't you know about the charm?" The Gryffindor asked, clearly annoyed at the other girls perceived stupidity.
"Yes, as a matter of fact," Vanessa replied, "But I had to get those books." She winced as Granger continued her treatment.
"Why didn't you just leave them until tomorrow? I mean, you could have just taken the non-restricted section books and gone back to read the others later."
Vanessa looked at Hermione as though she'd gone mad, "You mean you don't know?"
Hermione finished up the last of the bandage wrapping. "Know what?" She asked, without looking up from her work.
"A ministry official is coming here tomorrow to remove all the books with Contraceptive spells in them!"
Hermione looked up at the other girl, her eyes wide with shock, "They can't do that!" she exclaimed angrily, pulling a bit of bandage a bit too tightly in her fervor, causing Vanessa to groan.
"Oh but they can," She replied boredly, "They'll probably remove all the other books that might help a witch figure out a way to overturn this law as well, I should think." She waved her now thoroughly bandaged hands in front of Hermione's face, "So you see the urgency with which I had to act."
Hermione looked as though she might explode. "They have no right to do this!" She shouted angrily, "They can't pass a law that changes all our lives and then not expect us to fight it!"
"On the contrary, Granger," Vanessa began sarcastically, "They do expect us to fight it. Hence their actions." She flexed her fingers, testing the tightness of the bandages and how badly they would impair her movement.
Hermione sputtered, "But, but- That's not fair!" She shouted, "This is wrong! Unjust! There ougtta be a law!" She shook her fists to high heaven and railed on for another five minutes or so.
Vanessa finally cut off her ranting, "I don't see what you have to complain about," She said bitterly, "at least you're being petitioned for by Ron Weasley."
"And what is that supposed to mean?" Hermione asked huffily, "You think I'm ready to settle down and have a brood of Weasleys at seventeen?!" She put her hands on her hips, clearly taking the offensive, "I may love Ron, but I'm not ready to be married and have children! I had plans you know!"
Vanessa crossed her arms over her chest, "I'm not saying you didn't! I'm saying you have the option of marrying a friend, who most likely won't force you into anything like the Fidelus Imperialus charm."
Hermione was stunned into silence, her anger completely leaving her at mention of the Fidelus Imperialus charm. "They-they re-enacted the use of the dreadful thing!?" She asked, her face draining of color.
Vanessa nodded solemnly, completely understanding Hermione's shock and dismay.
The Fidelus Imperialus charm was an ancient one, and a very sexist one as well. It gave the husband complete control of the wife, it not only ensured the marital faithfulness of the woman involved, but also forced her into the submission of her husband. She would be forced to do whatever he desired, regardless of the effects on herself or others. If she was strong of will, she might be able to control some of her own actions, but if not, she would become her husbands puppet.
There were ways to weaken the charms effects enough to allow the wife some free thought, but not many, and the ones that did exist were hard to achieve and illegal. It was like legalized, magical slavery of women. The charm, was of course, optional, but it was at the man's discretion as to whether or not it would be used.
Hermione was utterly dumbstruck with horror. The charm had been outlawed several centuries before, and now the Ministry had made it legal again. She could only assume that the Death Eater Purebloods were responsible for this turn of events.
After all, their sons may have had to marry Mudbloods, but with this charm in place, they could do whatever they liked with them (or to them, Hermione shuddered) and no-one would be held accountable.
"We have to find a way to stop this from happening."