A/N: Hello my darlings. Another new Dramione from me, I know. I'm wretched for not finishing them all before starting new ones. I just can't help it. This fic was inspired by a challenge issued by a friend, called the "Take a Cliche" challenge. Where I was given a cliched topic/trope and told to run with it and make it fun. My prompt was regarding the idea of a character having a lovechild. I do hope you like the story.
WARNINGS: This fic contains mentions of child-bearing, infidelity, divorce, scenes of a sexual nature, some cliches and a good deal of angsty romantic goodness. It also contains pairings of Draco/Hermione, Ron/Hermione, Harry/Ginny and a number of other side pairings. If you don't like those things, you won't like this story.
Don't forget to drop me a review with your thoughts! Much love! xx-Kitten
Better Dig Two
Chapter 1: A Terrible Love
Hermione Granger stopped dead in her tracks at the sight of the man she knew to be Ron Weasley where he stood in a secluded alcove with a woman, not herself, plastered against him most inappropriately. The masquerade theme of the evening ball did nothing to hide the identity of her long-term boyfriend, though it effectively hid that of his current consort. Ron's splash of vivid red-hair was recognisable anywhere and Hermione felt the sting of betrayal sear through her veins with more intensity than dragon-fire.
Utterly horrified by the scene, Hermione fled before she could be spotted by the snogging couple, refusing to even consider the idea of letting Ron's betrayal ruin the entire evening for the rest of her graduating classmates. She didn't want the shame of another night spent dealing with his moods and his petty arguments should she confront him about this incident now. Tears trickled from her eyes, soaking her cheeks and causing her own masquerade mask to shift uncomfortably on her wet face.
Unable to face her classmates or the idea of running into Harry or Ginny and needing to explain the situation to either of them, knowing they would spot her tears and guess the reason for them, Hermione retreated to the one place she knew she wouldn't be found by any of her friends.
The Room of Requirement welcomed her with a collection of tissue boxes and a comfortable chair by a fireplace, and Hermione found herself emitting a bitter chuckle in spite of her fury and her heartache. She didn't know why she was surprised. It wasn't as though this was the first time Ron had been unfaithful to her. She knew that the distance between them while she'd completed the final year of her studies and he'd gone into Auror training with Harry had been a strain on their relationship.
She knew he'd dabbled with other women.
And yet here she was, furious and sobbing over the notion of him doing so again. Hermione clenched her fists, tossing her used tissues into the crackling fireplace as she got to her feet and began pacing furiously. She didn't know if she was more furious with Ron for what he was doing, or with herself for constantly putting up with his behaviour. It was one thing after all, to forgive him for a mistake he'd made one night with far too much alcohol and fresh sorrow coursing through him to have even intended to hurt her this way. It was entirely another to continue putting up with the same mistake occurring again and again.
The most insulting factor of the entire thing was that Hermione had been faithful to the bastard for all the time she'd dated him. Even during their year of separation when comfort in the arms of another willing body had been offered, Hermione had been faithful. She'd never strayed from him. She'd loved him more than anything else in the entire world and she'd forgiven him each of his misdemeanours.
She'd even blamed herself. After all, if she hadn't been away at Hogwarts when he needed her then he wouldn't have had to find solace in the arms of another woman. But that excuse was no longer going to cut it. He'd come to the ball with her, on her invitation. It was her sodding graduation and supposed to be a happy night of celebration shared with friends and peers as she moved onto the next step in her life, celebrating all that she had achieved thus far.
Ron didn't have the excuse of not having Hermione on hand to assist him with his desires. She'd been right there next to him all evening until she'd accompanied Ginny to the bathroom, only to return later and find him plastered against some brainless bimbo who ought to have known better. The entire wizarding world knew that she and Ron were an item and had been since the end of the war. They were constantly in the papers and in Witch Weekly's gossips columns for their misdemeanours, their latest fashion choices, their romantic life.
Being part of the dubbed 'Golden Trio' that had been such huge contributors to bringing down Voldemort and the Death Eaters had earned Hermione and Ron a place inside the book of fame right alongside Harry. These days their exploits were constantly published in the tabloids. Harry loathed it, of course, but Hermione knew that Ron was rather pleased to have finally distinguished himself from his brothers and made a name for himself. He lapped up the attention like a hungry puppy. Hermione herself rather disliked constantly being written about. She received fan mail and hate mail for many of the things she did or didn't r didn't do.
Merlin, even when she didn't do things, the journalists just made wild things up, spicing up her life in an entirely fictional, yet extremely annoying way. And unfortunately Rita Skeeter was no longer the only woman making up lies about her. She had little choice but to put up with it, actually. After all, she couldn't capture them all for the annoying little gnats they were and threaten to drown them all in their jam jar prisons.
When the bottle of fire-whiskey appeared on the table beside the couch where she'd been sitting, Hermione reached for it automatically. She ignored the glass that materialised beside it in favour of swigging the liquid straight from the bottle. She coughed only a little at the burn in her throat as she took long gulps, attempting to numb her pain and her fury. Gods, she needed more to drink. She needed to be numb.
This heartache was too much and it made her feel positively sick to her stomach. She knew she wasn't the most elegant or the most beautiful witch in the wizarding world, but was it really so hard for Ron to keep in in his pants? Was there something wrong with her that meant he wanted others? She'd thought after he'd walked out on them during the Horcrux hunt – after he'd abandoned them – that he'd learned his lesson. That his mettle had been tested and he'd come back stronger for it. Now it seemed like it was being tested again, and this time it was Hermione who was breaking apart.
Why did it always seem to her that she paid the price of heartache for all of Ron's stupid choices? Why did she have to suffer for his stupidity? It wasn't as though she didn't put out for him. It wasn't as though he were straying because she was a virgin and too frigid to give him what he wanted to needed. She admittedly had been away at school most of the year, but she'd still shagged him when she saw him. Yet here he was, with her right in the very same castle as him and more than willing to sleep with him, yet he was more interested in rutting whichever little trollop had batted her eyes at the famous Ron Weasley and flirted enough to flatter his enormous ego.
Even though his long-term girlfriend was in the same bloody castle!
She'd had enough, confound it all!
She'd had it with Ron cheating on her and being such a faithless bastard while she remained so loyal to him. She loved him too much to leave him, but Ronald Weasley was going to get a taste of his own medicine.
"Fancy finding this place occupied on a night like this," a low, masculine voice spoke from the shadows and Hermione marvelled at the efficiency of the Room of Requirement. She had only just been thinking that she would need to find a man to commit her infidelity with, and lo and behold, one had appeared. She blamed the fire-whiskey entirely for not thinking beyond being provided what she required. She'd had more than half the bottle by now.
"And what might you be doing here?" she asked, her voice husky from the amount of whiskey she'd consumed and the titillating feeling of even considering cheating on Ron and giving him a taste of his own bitter medicine.
"Well I was intending to escape the gyrating masses, if you must know, and planning to bid this place farewell," the man spoke from the shadows again, still not revealing himself just yet.
"Would you care for a drink to go with that?" Hermione heard herself ask, her eyes fixed on the form silhouetted against the gloom of the room.
The mystery man's identity was well hidden by his mask. The lower half was white and concealed most of his face, the upper half bore some rather tasteful horns and a mess of fake black hair, effectively hiding his own hair and notable features rather splendidly. She could honestly say there wasn't a single thing about him that even hinted at his identity and he certainly wasn't someone she recognised. Not with the mask on his face. Hermione knew that her own mask hid her identity rather well too. She'd chosen an elaborate mask of silver, one half designed in the shape of a butterflies wings and engraved with swirls and patterns.
She had tamed her hair with a hot iron, flattening the unruly curls into long sleek strands before charming it all into an elaborate up-do. All evening folks had been guessing at her identity, unable to tell it was even her. She'd been very much enjoying the anonymity of it all as well, for once not being constantly hounded by reporters with their cameras or questions from vicious gossips looking for a scoop to sell to the papers.
"That might be rather pleasant, I suppose," the man murmured in a way that seemed almost sultry to Hermione and as he stepped closer, moving out of the shadows and allowing himself to be illuminated by the glow of the firelight, Hermione felt her breath catch in her throat. She couldn't tell simply by looking at him who he might be, and her mind was too fuzzy from the drink to properly care about who he was.
Instead she was focused on his slim yet wiry build and the way a wicked smirk arranged itself upon his lips beneath his mask. His eyes glowed like molten silver as the firelight danced in them and Hermione found herself returning the heated look he gave with one of her own. Whoever he was, he was fit and he was handsome.
"You're a student here then, graduating and about to step out into the world?" Hermione asked him as she reached for a glass and poured him a liberal drink.
"What gave me away?" he asked, his voice causing Hermione to quiver. It practically dripped lust and seduction and Hermione wondered if there was something more to the whiskey or perhaps the room than met the eye, causing both of them to be so startlingly attracted to one another.
She'd certainly never felt so instantly attracted to any of her classmates. Not that she could recall, anyway. And if he were a graduating student then there could be no doubt that she knew him. She'd probably spent a number of days or weeks talking to him, interacting with him and otherwise sharing the castle with him, yet as she eyed him hungrily, she couldn't put her finger on who he might possibly be.
"You mentioned the urge to bid farewell to this place," Hermione informed him, deciding she ought to try and project a little more class than continuing to swig from the bottle and choosing to use a glass like he did.
"I did indeed," the unknown man murmured, looking intrigued by her attention to detail, "And you? Are you among the graduating class or a guest who simply happens to know of this room's existence?"
"I'm also graduating," Hermione replied with a coy smile, enjoying the anonymity of not knowing who he was and being unknown to him herself. It was a refreshing change in the aftermath of the War. She'd never enjoyed the spotlight the way Ron had and she rather liked the feeling of not being known as the bushy-haired know-it-all who had been a member of the famous Golden Trio. It also meant this was less likely to get back to the papers because her mystery man wouldn't know who she was to share the juicy details of their impending encounter.
"You were upset when you entered the room?" he queried quietly, sipping his whiskey with an air of someone who was used to the flavour and an elegance that belied a practiced ease. Whoever he was, he clearly was used to spending his evening drinking fine whiskey. Hermione kind of liked that.
"I was," Hermione agreed, her eyes narrowing at the reminder of Ron's betrayal. She didn't want to think about that now. She wanted to think about how gleeful and glorious it would be to betray Ron as he'd betrayed her. She also wanted to think about what this handsome and wiry wizard had going on underneath those fine robes he was currently clad in.
"I don't suppose you'd care to share the details?" he asked and Hermione found herself grinning a little.
"I'd prefer to forget them, actually. I'm sure that you could assist me in that venture?" she told him, her eyes travelling over his black-clad form indicatively.
That wicked smirk returned to his lips and Hermione found herself staring at them hungrily. She'd never felt so attracted to anyone in her life as she did in that moment to this mystery man.
"I could indeed. I could make you forget your own name, if you'd like. And what a send-off from this place that might make," he purred to her, causing Hermione's body to hum with desire. Before she could think any further, or even consider the reasons that this might be a bad idea or that she didn't even know the name of the man advancing on her, he stepped close. His free hand came up to rest lightly on the exposed nape of her neck and Hermione found herself tilting her head back to hold his intense gaze. When his eyes asked permission for him to come even closer, Hermione felt a heated smile spread across her face and she went up on her toes until her lips met his descending pair.
The touch was like an explosion through her system and one kiss was all it took for Hermione to be completely lost to the rush of emotions that coursed through her, overcoming her sense and her shyness and even her dignity. The fire-whiskey in her blood boiled through her, making her even hotter and his touch was like an electric shock to every sense she owned. Sweet merlin, but the man could kiss!
Giving herself over to the sensation of his mouth on hers and his hands on her body, Hermione simply allowed herself to feel. She closed off her mind, closed off her emotions and her frustration with Ron. Closed off everything that usually weighed on her shoulders and chose to just feel. To feel the smooth, sexy caress of his tongue against her own. To enjoy the way he hooked one long, cool finger into the cleavage of her dress until the front ties began to unwind. To revel in the feel of indulging in every forbidden fantasy she'd never allowed herself to experience or even dwell on.
Instead Hermione chose to give in completely.
When it was over, Hermione found herself lying beside her mystery partner on a conveniently soft rug before the still crackling fire. Both of them still wore their masks, never once revealing their identity to one another and Hermione found the mystery to be seductive and titillating. It felt good to know that all the depraved things the two of them had just done to one another would not call for the blushing of cheeks and the biting of lips in regret or guilt upon coming into contact with one another ever again.
She didn't ask him his name, didn't even speak to him in fact. She simply lay there for a few long moments as she tried to catch her breath, enjoying the lazy way he trailed his fingers up and down her bare spine. He did it in such a way that he seemed intrigued by her and simply couldn't resist continuing to touch her. His touch was light – exquisite in fact – and Hermione felt sure she could almost drop right off to sleep if he would just keep doing that.
"I'd have had a lot more fun in this place if I'd spent more time indulging in this particular extra-curricular activity like that," he joked softly, his voice still husky and somehow still eliciting a smattering of goose-pimples from her. Goddess, even his voice was seductive and designed for pleasure.
And there could be no doubt that he knew how to provide pleasure.
"I was thinking exactly the same thing," Hermione murmured. She'd never felt so satisfied and content in all her life and as she lay there she wondered why she'd wasted so much time putting off having sex for the likes of Ron when she could instead be enjoying it with anybody else who struck her fancy. It was clear that it was delightful. She was also painfully aware of the fact that her mystery man was far better at the activity than Ron was. She might've pulled something, in fact.
"You're not going to tell me who you are, are you?" he murmured a little while later as he trailed a line of kisses across her bare shoulder and along the length of her spine, seeming uninterested in the idea of simply getting up and wandering off now that he was done with her.
"No," Hermione murmured, "I'm not going to tell you who I am. I'm also not going to ask you for your identity. Anonymity is a privilege I'd like to enjoy a while longer."
The conversation dropped off when Hermione realised that he wasn't done with her just yet, something he demonstrated as his hands trailed over her flesh and began to stir more sexual desire within her. She wasn't even sure she was up to another round after that first one, and yet she felt a smile creep across her face anyway. Rolling to her back, Hermione reached up and pulled him down on top of her for another of those scorching kisses he so skilfully delivered.
"Do me a favour?" she asked breathlessly when they broke apart, his weight on top of her a delicious and welcome sensation.
He raised one eyebrow beneath his mask and Hermione grinned at him naughtily.
"Leave some marks on my skin," she requested, liking the idea of leaving evidence of this night, of this man and this moment on her skin. Liking the idea of having Ron know what she'd done.
"You don't have anyone to hide them from?" he murmured curiously and Hermione simply grinned wider. The knowing smirk she got in return made her wonder if this mystery man knew that she was wilfully and enthusiastically being unfaithful, with the intention of being caught.
"Anything to oblige the lady," he purred in her ear before his lips set to work on the flesh of her neck, drawing blood to the surface again and again in a way that was so entirely seductive Hermione could barely stand it. She was unable to resist returning the favour, leaving several love-bites on his neck and shoulders along with some claw marks down his back.
She didn't rightly know how long she spent there in the Room of Requirement with her mystery man. She lost track of time, indeed of all reality, in his pleasurable presence and beneath his tantalizing touch. All Hermione knew was that it was a night she would never forget.
Fate wouldn't let her.