A/N:

Based on the classic story of Beauty and the Beast, in my story Hermione finds herself imprisoned by Draco, who had been cursed and who is desperate to find a way to return to his former self.

This story is a work in progress, though I have a pretty good idea of how the plot will unravel and how it will end. There will be explicit mature content later on in the story, so readers please be warned.

The Prologue and First chapter are more about setting the background for the story, so I apologize in advance for the lack of action, but starting with chapter two there will be plenty of action as well, and I hope to post chapters relatively fast (once a week or even more often). Reviews are always welcome and constructive criticism is also OK, as I want to grow as a writer.

That being said, I hope you enjoy reading this story as much as I enjoy writing it.

Disclaimer: I do not own the Harry Potter story/characters.


Prologue

The Second Wizarding War was over, and Voldemort had been defeated – but not without a very high price. The Wizarding world had buried their dead an mourned them, but at least their losses hadn't been in vain: despite the escape of a couple of Death Eaters (Mulciber Jr, Nott Sr., Rosier and Thorfinn Rowle) who were in hiding but hunted relentlessly by Aurors, most of them were either dead or otherwise securely locked up in Azkaban (the prison being guarded by an incredible number of wards and enchantments, but also by Aurors) – all was safe.

Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry was being repaired at full speed, so that once the first of September came, it would be able to welcome students – including those who wanted to repeat the previous year.

As only a month had passed since the fateful Battle of Hogwarts, the wounds were still fresh for many – not physical wounds, no, those had been expertly treated by healers from St. Mungo's hospital, but wounds of the soul.

The Weasleys were among those who had been affected the most, having lost Fred – and although getting Percy back was some comfort, they were still suffering pretty badly, especially George. As a consequence, Fleur's family had invited them all, Harry and Hermione included, to spend a couple of weeks in France, in an attempt to help them move on with their lives.

Mr. and Mrs. Weasley declined the invitation, and so did George and Percy, and Charlie was already back to his dragons in Romania – however, Ron and Ginny were eager to go, to get away from the pain for a while and let time work its healing magic, and they were especially eager to go due to the fact that Harry and Hermione had agreed to go with them.

Hermione had already retrieved her parents from Australia, and restored their memories of her, although it hadn't been easy to correct the modifications to their minds that she had made the previous year. As such, she was OK with letting them resettle in their life in the UK, while she escaped for a couple of weeks to France, a country she had previously visited and which she loved.

As for Harry, he definitely needed a chance to get away – he was now even more famous than before and he hoped that the journalists would settle down a bit while he was travelling abroad. Besides, spending time with Ginny away from her parents and most of her siblings was very appealing to him. Sure, Bill and Fleur had promised to keep a close watch on them all, but Bill and Fleur were pretty much newlyweds, so they knew what it meant to be in love and to want to spend time with the one you loved, especially after going through a war. Ron would probably have an issue too, he was extremely set against seeing his sister snog his best friend in public (that is to say, in front of him), but Harry hoped he would be too distracted snogging Hermione to notice anything he might or might not do.

So in the first week of June, they had taken a portkey that got them to their destination, a quaint inn by the name of "La potion moussante" in the Loire Valley, which was their touristic destination. They would spend a week there, and then continue on for another week or two back in Lyon, where Fleur's parents lived.