Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter or any affiliated characters. I just happened to come up with the plot for this ship. All credit to J.K for her amazing universe that she allows us to play in.

Warning: Rated M. Cursing, sexual innuendos, lemons and fluff ahead. Basically what you would expect from a romance novel nowadays.

Eternal love and gratitude to my Beta, Ihrin who is taking over this story for me. Thank you so much!

Music is my muse:
Song for this chapter:
Drops of Jupiter, Train
Did you miss me while you were looking for yourself out there?

Love of a Mate

Chapter One

In Dreams

Hermione woke up with a start gasping for breath as the dream evaporated slowly from her. She was covered in sweat and her shoulder stung. She reached up and touched it expecting to see blood, but when she pulled her hand away there was nothing there. To say it was odd was the understatement of the century, but it was a dream she had been having since the end of her sixth year at Hogwarts, which was four years ago. And the dream was getting stronger.

She looked across the room to see Ginny watching her in the darkness.

"I woke you up?" Hermione asked softly.

Ginny nodded sitting up; her face looked troubled. "They're getting worse, aren't they? The dreams?"

Hermione sighed and sank back down onto the bed. "Yes, they are. But, all of us have-"

Ginny cut her off. "Don't you dare lie to me anymore, Hermione. You're not having nightmares. You don't scream and thrash around, you moan and it doesn't sound like it's in pain. It's just at the end that you scream and it is really heartbreaking."

Hermione took a deep breath and tried to force a smile; it ended up more like a grimace. "Ginny, it's just a dream."

Ginny stood up moving over to Hermione's bed- the two girls shared a flat.

"Tell me about it. Is it always the same? How long have you had it?"

Hermione bit her lip and then sank down onto the bed, pulling Ginny down with her; she would miss Ginny when the girl finally married Harry this summer.

"Yes, it's always the same. I have had this dream since I was seventeen. It's just getting... more explicit I guess."

She felt Ginny's interest being piqued. "It's a shag dream? I thought it might be but- wait, what do you mean by more? More people?"

Hermione shook her head smirking and hit her friend. "Eww, no. Just, clearer, I see more."

Ginny rolled over. "Who is it with?"

Hermione shook her head and flushed. "It, well, I couldn't tell for a long time. It was all in shadows, but-" she buried her head in her hands in mortification, "You remember Draco Malfoy?"

Ginny gasped. "No. Way."

Hermione snorted. "Yes, well, it's rather embarrassing. Of course we all thought he was cute but what is he doing starring in my reoccurring shag dream?"

Ginny laughed. "Was it always him or did you just fill him into the slot recently?"

Hermione shook her head, feeling confusion move through her. "It- no, it's always been him. I don't know how I know that but I do. And it's almost like it's not a dream but a memory, like an old memory on repeat and all of a sudden it's being refined-" Her voice trailed off and she rubbed at her shoulder again; It was tingling now.

Ginny followed her gaze and then said softly. "'Mione, that scar on your shoulder, it's showing more."

Hermione frowned. "I know. I keep trying to use a glamour charm on it but it doesn't work."

Ginny shook her head and leaned up to look at it. "How did you get this again?"

Hermione snorted and rolled her eyes. "Who knows really. I have so many random scars I can't account for; it's just the really big ones I remember."

Ginny frowned and traced the mark carefully. "Um, was my brother wild in bed?"

Hermione looked up at her in shock and flushed in embarrassment. "What? No, and we never- I mean I never-" She stopped talking and shivered. "I didn't shag your brother, Ginny. I keep telling you that."

Ginny gave her a long look and then her frown deepened. "That's a bite mark, Hermione. I noticed it that summer you stayed with us, before you all left to go camping. If my brother didn't give it to you, who did?"

Hermione went pale and tried to turn her head to look at the mark. "No, you have to be wrong. And of course your brother didn't bloody bite me, Ginny! That's absurd."

Ginny snorted and touched the scar, causing Hermione to flinch. Ginny's eyes went wide. "It hurts?"

Hermione shook her head. "No, it, I just don't like you touching it."

Ginny sat back and her eyes went wide. "Oh, Merlin. Hermione, I know what that mark is."

Hermione sighed. "A scar I got in one of the many battles I was in during my youth?"

Ginny shook her head and yanked on Hermione's arm. "No, get up. We have to go see Fleur."

Hermione gasped, trying to rip her hand out of Ginny's. "What? No, I am not going to see Fleur- stop it, Ginny!"

Three hours Later
Shell Cottage

Hermione sat, drinking tea as Fleur smiled at her kindly. Bill was off with their daughter and Ginny was standing at the stove pouring herself more tea.

"So, it's a mating mark, isn't it?" Ginny said as Hermione flushed and put her hand over the scar, unable to hide her discomfort.

Fleur nodded, her face turning thoughtful. "And when did you say you saw it?" She asked in her soft-accented English, which had improved greatly over the last five years.

Ginny sat down, her face excited. "I first noticed it the summer you married Bill. It was still red and it wasn't always there, but now it's white and never goes away."

Fleur frowned and then said carefully. "Hermione, do you mind if I take a closer look?"

Hermione looked at Ginny who was nodding at her and then said exasperatedly, "Please do."

Fleur set down her tea and stood up; she was careful not to actually touch the mark. Her eyes widened a little then she shook her head a bit and moved off, grabbing a book off a small shelf in the dining room.

"It is a veela mark," she said softly, "but I do not understand why you would have it without a mate."

Hermione gasped as Ginny choked on her tea. "A mate!" Ginny rasped through her coughing.

Fleur nodded thoughtfully, running her finger down the page. "Yes, she is mated. It would explain very well why her and Ronald did not work. She belongs to another and another belongs to her." She was silent now, turning pages in the book.

Hermione sat wide-eyed while Ginny looked shocked.

"Ah, yes," Fleur said, standing up. "He used a forgetting bind on you. It says you will dream of him."

Ginny gasped. "She does! She's had dreams!"

Hermione flushed. "But why would my mate do that? I thought Veela didn't do well without their other halves?"

Fleur nodded, her expression growing sad. "Yes, it would have been very painful for him. The shortest amount of time for this bind is five years. Given the timing of when you received the mark, I would say that it was done to protect you; there was a war, after all. Veela used to do this when they went off to fight wars or if their mates were too young. Is your dream sensual in nature?"

Ginny spoke up. "I'd say so! She's shagging someone!"

Hermione swallowed. "What- what does that mean?"

Fleur smiled at her and then shrugged. "It means you probably fully mated with him before he did the spell. You knew him, so to say."

Hermione frowned, trying to pull up the memories of her dream, which always alluded her when awake. "How will I know who it is? I mean, it couldn't be the person in my dream, so how do I know-"

Fleur interrupted, "You know the person? In the dream?"

Hermione nodded, sighing. "Well, yes. Recently, I recognize him. But Fleur, he's a pureblood; he hated me. I promise you that if he had gotten anywhere near me, everyone would've known."

Ginny was looking a bit perplexed and then sighed, nodding. "She's right, Fleur. There is no way this boy could have had a relationship with her. We all would have noticed that. They hardly ever spoke that year."

Fleur shook her head. "I don't know. May I ask who it is?"

Hermione spoke softly. "Draco Malfoy."


Draco Malfoy sat up in bed, his head pounding. His bloody mate was haunting him evermore. As the spell began to wind down, he sensed her more and more often. Every night now, he found himself dreaming of her. He woke up every night with his weeping cock in his hand, desperate to touch her.

Draco groaned into his pillow as he threw himself back onto the bed. He was running out of time! Pretty soon, the spell would wear off and he either had to reclaim her or he would perish of madness. He half a thought that the madness of being separated from her had already started.

He got up and yanked on his clothes, looking around his room with disquiet. He knew where she was, who she lived with, where she worked, and what she looked like- but he had no contact with her.

The last time he had seen her had been during the war. She had been tortured by his batty aunt in his own home. He still had nightmares over that experience. Every fiber of his being had demanded he save her, protect her. But he could not have done anything. If he had, she would have been killed. In fact, she had almost been killed again by that imbecile Crabbe back during the Battle of Hogwarts. Again, he had not been able to claim her, to protect her. He had been stuck playing his bloody part because if he didn't and the Dark Lord looked too deeply, he could have betrayed everything.

But he had managed to stay alive, and the little he had been allowed to do to protect her had at least kept her alive as well. She was, in fact, a decorated war hero. Draco, however, had been a traitor- and even though he had avoided rotting in Azkaban with his father, he hadn't been forgiven. He had also spent the last three years rebuilding his family's fortune, a significant portion of which was lost after the war to the Ministry.

He rubbed a hand over his face and headed down to breakfast. His mother was already, there her face troubled.

"Draco, we must talk."

He flinched. Ah yes, the talk again. "Yes, mother?"

"My dragon, you must start looking for your mate. I don't understand how you have avoided the madness as long as you have but Veela simply must mate. You know this, son."

Draco sighed and picked up his tea giving a short nod to the house elf bobbing away. "I have found her, mother."

His mother dropped her spoon, her face going white with shock. "What? Who? When?"

Draco stared at the portrait of his father resting on the wall, behind the chair where he had once sat. The man stared down at him with a sneer. Draco shook his head and said quietly, "I found her at school, before the war and after I took the dark mark. I knew she would not be safe as my mate, so I mated with her and did the forgetful bind on her."

This was the condensed version of what had actually happened but Draco figured that he had probably better keep it simple, seeing as it was going to shock the hell out of his poor mother when she heard the full story of how he had ended up mated to Hermione Granger.

His mother gasped, her hand going to her mouth. "Draco! You should have told me. What if she was harmed? We should have been watching out for her, we could have-"

Draco cut her off, "Mother, if we had shown any interest in her at all during that time, it would have meant all our deaths."

His mother went slightly green. "She's- she is not a pure-?"

Draco shook his head and said slowly, "No mother, she is not. She was safest away from me, far away." His eyes stared at the portrait again, hatred showing clearly on his face.

His mother sighed heavily. "He would have come around, Draco. She is your mate. I understand why you felt you had to protect her from your father but why have you not spoken of her to me?"

Draco flinched at her hurt tone and sighed, looking gloomily at his toast. "Your guilt would have been stifling, mother, and she's under the spell. She remembers nothing- well, nothing good about me- and that is all the better. I betrayed everything she stood for. I am the enemy. She probably still hates me, and for good reason."

Narcissa's eyes went wide. "Oh, Draco, she can't hate you! You are her mate! You would never harm her."

Draco's eyes flashed to his mother's. "But I did harm her, mother." He waved his hand at his still shocked mother and his father who was glowering from the portrait- silenced of course, but still there to sneer at them. "We hurt her, mother, all of us. Even once the spell wears off, she will most likely refuse to be my mate and I don't blame her. I don't deserve her."

Narcissa's eyes filled with tears. "Do not even think such a thing, Draco!"

Draco was breathing heavily now, his face twisting with rage. "Mother, do you remember the girl who your dear sister carved into in our parlor? The one she tortured gleefully?"

Narcissa's eyes widened and she said slowly, "I do… that mudblood that ran around with Potter. Is she a friend of your mate's?"

Draco's eyes were almost swirling with pain and anger. "No mother. She is my mate."

He had to jump up to catch his mother as she fainted at the table, her look of horror something Draco could never remember seeing on his mother before.

I am not sure how often I will be updating this, I will try to do so once a week but this is a work in progress.
Reviews are very helpful and very appreciated. My muse feeds off them.
I now have a Beta and will be replacing these chapters as I get time with the edited versions.
Thanks again for the support. :)

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Owl letters...