Lucius smirked to himself at the bellow that came from right outside his office and braced for impact. With a thunderous slam, his office door crashed open and there she stood in her magnificent rage.
Curly hair bristling - calling back to the Medusa's serpentine hair, seeming to have a life of its own - amber eyes crackling, feet placed in a wide dueling stance, molten lava colored magic billowing around her body, and hands balled tightly into fists on her hips, one of which was holding a crumpled sheet of paper.
Yes, Hermione Granger, was a sight to be seen when she was riled up. And Lucius Malfoy oh so loved to do the riling.
The war was over, but the bloodshed and pain still lingered in the magical world. Magic, it seems, holds onto the memories of old, and makes it very difficult to move forward. Darkness hid in corners and crannies, followers of the Dark Lord still prowled in desperate hope that a new rising would be brought about, and so the wizarding world was stuck between desperately wanting to move forward and having to backtrack to make sure history did not repeat itself once more.
The "Golden Trio," as Lucius would say with rolled eyes, were all given Order of Merlins, First Class for their heroism in the war. All three were offered exemption from their N.E.W.T.S. and immediate placement in the Ministerial workforce, which the two overzealous boys eagerly took, but which Granger refused, wanting to finish her education, loathing the thought of receiving something she didn't earn herself, especially when it came to her schooling. But, to no one's surprise, she graduated top of her class, even surpassing some school records left by Dumbledore and McGonagall. Then, again to no one's surprise, she dove headfirst into work: The Department and Care of Magical Creatures. Due to the loss of so many lives within the Ministry during the War, she was immediately offered the deputy director's position, but refused it in her irritatingly righteous fashion, choosing to earn it instead. It had only taken her a couple of years and she had landed the Deputy Director position all by her own merit.
Lucius had to admit, the girl was impressive. She had brought about change within the wizarding world regarding magical creatures, to an extent that almost rivaled that Scamander fellow. Granger had enough empathy to cover the entire universe and would take up the mantle of advocate for every marginalized creature that existed. She was incredible to watch on the Wizengamot floor, arguing her cases, seeming to be one step ahead of everyone as she predicted the opposition and offered solutions to every opposing thought. She was idyllic as she was young, vibrant and she was passionate, stubborn as she was strong. The war had done Granger well in some aspects: giving her a hardened spine that refused to bend in order to bring about change. Yes, they all had their scars from the horrors of a wartorn wizarding world, but from it Hermione had morphed into the warrior she was always meant to be.
Lucius could watch her argue her cases forever. Her intelligence and wit were breathtaking. Her charm (though never extended to him) was endearing. Her passion was intoxicating. Those amber eyes would flash with every strong emotion: hopeful joy of a better future and ire at the older wizards that refused to break with stale and archaic traditions. A pretty little blush would color her cheeks when she was particularly enlivened, a blush that often set Lucius's mind to wander into less than professional places. She had matured wonderfully, a powerful woman, with long curls that cascaded down her back, strong and shapely legs that were often covered in Muggle trousers that did mesmerizing things to her bum, a mouthwatering body that was evidently maintained since her days on the run. She was elegant as she was strong. Powerful as she was womanly.
To any other man (and almost every man in the ministry), she was intimidating. But Lucius was not like those men that cowered at a fierce woman, longing for a docile sheep that would fill their bellies, bear their spawn, and coo senseless frivolities in their ears. The challenge that she presented was too good to pass up. Lucius longed to play with her fire, release it so the world could see the goddess that was housed in the tightly wound witch. In every other setting Granger was very in control of herself - anyone else would call her uptight - but the passion he saw during her debates on the welfare of creatures or when she was particularly angry (most of the time goaded on by him) showed him a different creature altogether. That passion just whetted his appetite and made him yearn for more. There were many days that he would imagine what it would be like to make Granger fully lose that tightly held control.
His mind conjured up a delicious image of that blush on her face, with her head thrown back and eyes closed as she undulated and writhed beneath him as he had his filthy way with her, their Magic's intertwining as a mirror of their bodies. Lucius inwardly chastised himself in order to try to get his mind back on track. He couldn't be distracted when she stood before him.
The Veela that was in his blood from a long forgotten ancestor had given him sharpened senses, which was one of the reasons he had risen so high in the Dark Lord's ranks. Compared to an ordinary wizard that twinned him, Lucius was far superior. Faster, stronger, keener, cleverer. Though, of course, the Veela part was a well-kept Malfoy secret, partially due to the prejudices that purebloods could have against "mixed breeds" and partially due to the upper hand that it gave to bearers of such blood. If an enemy didn't know all of one's secrets, they could easily be bested. One of Lucius's favorite little Veela tricks was a sight that could detect the Magic of individuals. Each witch or wizard had their own special magical trace: like a fingerprint in a way - their own mix of colors, their own texture, their own strengths and weaknesses. This was why Lucius was a renowned dueler: when you see the source of the Magic, it was easy to predict and exploit an opponent. Of course, with focus, Lucius could hinder the amount he saw. Too much could cause headaches and distractions. It wasn't necessary to see the magic of every single ministry worker milling around as that much color would look like a unicorn vomited a rainbow and he just wasn't up for that.
Most magical beings' magic originated from the chest, wrapping from the heart, up to the shoulders, and down to radiate from the hands. At a resting state, the magic usually stayed within the upper torso of the body. Only during extremes, such as in emotion or power of spells, would the magic spread to encompass the body. Lucius had a theory that a Veela or a part Veela had to have been the first wandmaker, because only someone with their sight could have known a hand held device would be the prime conductor and focuser of magical power.
However, Granger's power was mystifying. The vibrancy of her magic was a tale tell sign of her sheer power, but her magic, oddly enough, originated from her feet - no, the ground. In all his years, Lucius had never seen anything remotely like it. Her Magic was molten lava and blazing fire that swirled around her entire body, cording up her legs, spiraling around her waist, intertwining in her curls. Merlin, the girl looked like a sodding Phoenix rising daily. Lucius remembered seeing her as she fought in the final battle, that blaze blinding him as it seemed to completely engulf her as she dueled, burning through his one-opponent at a time focus. He had been hit with a pretty nasty hex because of her distraction. She was magnificent.
In short, Lucius was enamored with Hermione. He had chalked it up to his newfound bachelor-hood (when the Dark Lord had been eradicated, Narcissa had promptly packed her things and left him), but he and Narcissa had had no issues with sharing their beds with other lovers the entirety of their marriage. Arranged pure blood marriages were never ones filled with warmth and love, only duty and slight friendship, as the two were bonded only by the love of the children. That counter thought was shoved in the back of Lucius's mind, however, as he went back to his not so wholesome thoughts of Granger, justifying his thoughts with arguments of simply wanting the witch in his bed.
But Granger despised him. Hate runs deep and a Gryffindor holds a grudge almost as well as a Slytherin. Not to say that Granger hated him, per say, Lucius didn't think Granger was actually capable of hate, her compassion and willingness to give second chances showcased that. However, he had not been the kindest man to her in their short history. Lucius winced at the memory of her in his Manor, Bellatrix looming over her. He would not be surprised if she equated that whole memory entirely to his person, which would certainly explain her reluctance to be alone in a room with him.
That reluctance had vanished apparently as Lucius turned his head to face the wrath of the lioness that stood before him.
"Yes Miss Granger?" He replied coolly, raking his eyes up her body to meet her furious glare. She was wearing a pencil skirt and a pretty, flowy, silken material blouse. That skirt did wonders, showing off the curves of her hips delectably. And her shirt showed just the barest hints of cleavage. Just enough to drive a man mad from wanting to delve further.
Focus Lucius thought, trying to keep his composure There are more important things at the moment.
"What the fuck is this?" Hermione said through gritted teeth staring the blonde aristocrat down. His eyebrows rose at her choice of vocabulary and his steel grey eyes glittered with an emotion she couldn't place. Frustratingly unreadable as always.
Lucius Malfoy had been the bane of Hermione's entire existence at the Ministry. When the dust had settled after Voldemort was vanquished, the Malfoys were deemed worthy to just barely stay out of Azkaban as many witnesses came forward (willingly, they said. Paid off, everyone knew) to testify to Voldemort's blackmailing and intimidation tactics to keep the family in check. It would seem that the Ministry thought they had suffered enough and just slapped Lucius with a massive fine and a strict probation. Draco got off with no muddiness to his name, legality wise, due to his blatant defection in the middle of the Final Battle. Narcissa was deemed a troubled wife and mother subject to the bad decisions of her husband (that part bristled Hermione due to the Ministry's still arcane laws associated with women's placement and autonomy in society, but that was a battle for another day). Narcissa's love for Draco had saved Harry and brought about the end of the war and, for that, Hermione hoped she found happiness wherever she went after the very public split of the Malfoy marriage. Tabloids were still as toxic and strong as ever even after a war.
Lucius somehow (and by somehow she meant by sheer wealth and pureblooded privilege) had managed to get his silk clad arse back into the Ministry's good graces after only about a year of probation and was appointed over the Ministry as the Manager of Affairs. What Minister Shacklebolt was thinking, Hermione had no idea, but her teeth ground every time she thought of Malfoy getting all of this handed to him with only a gleaming white smile and a drop of a coin purse. Merlin Balls, his breath probably reeked from all the ass kissing he had to do.
And for some reason beyond the foggiest idea in Hermione's mind, he had seemed to take a special interest in making her life an absolutely fucking nightmare.
Left and right, Lucius would meet her, arguing against her cases in that arrogantly cool tone he always seem to have with that smirk that seemed to be permanently etched on his face. There was no case or bill she had proposed or argued for that hadn't taken almost 3 times as long to get passed because Malfoy seemed to block her progress at every turn. He would be at every reading, every debate, to offer his "Devil's Advocate" questions that would gum up the works and cause the government to reconvene after taking too long so a vote couldn't be called. It's also worth noting that a call to vote, annoyingly enough, had to be initiated by the Ministerial Manager of Affairs, Mr. Perfect Hair and Robes and Looks, himself.
Hermione assumed this unwanted attention was all due to some lasting wish to have the upper hand on her, to remind her of her place or status, to humiliate her and insult her intelligence. After all, a leopard can't change its spots and a Death Eater can't change his prejudices. She would do her best to stay calm and collected, patiently and diplomatically answering his and everyone else's questions. But he seemed to be particularly gifted in pissing her off. Not to mention, some of the old codgers that were somehow still alive, even though they looked 400 years old and on the brink of death, consistently refuse to move with the times and legitimately think things should stay the same way that they are because that's the way they have always been. Everything combined made Hermione want to tear her hair out. Daily.
In some aspects, she could almost appreciate his questions, as they allowed her to go into further detail over the case and increase the importance of the bill in the Ministry's eyes. Almost. She often got the feeling that Malfoy was simply mocking her and the rest of the Ministry was in on some cruel joke at her expense. Her fear of being handed positions and titles and awards just because of her name made her even more self conscious about her work and place more of her self worth in the approval of her superiors than when she was at Hogwarts.
Malfoy would often let the questioning of her cases go on for weeks before he would call a vote, half of the time voting in her favor and half not. She would be pleasantly surprised at his Ayes and irate at his Nays, as they seemed to have no rhyme or reason as to why they occurred. It felt like he was toying with her, her cases, and her career. Generally, Hermione did her absolute best to avoid and ignore him, not wanting to give him a chance to make her life hell outside of a case presentation.
But this time, he had gone too far.
"This," she said, acid dripping from her voice, as she slammed that crumpled paper on his desk right in front of him. It was covered in tiny typeface with a blaring, angry red stamp which said "DENIED" and had his elegant signature in green off to the side. Hermione leaned over Malfoy's desk staring him straight in the face, her right hand pointing accusingly at the insulting stamp. "What is the meaning of this?!"
Malfoy didn't even look at the paper or the stamp, he simply held her glare with his own steel gaze. An elegantly arched eyebrow rose and that blasted smirk blossomed on his face.
"Ah, yes. That." He sighed dramatically and leaned back in his chair. "I didn't want to trouble all our busy Wizengamot members with such a trivial bill, so I denied its ability to be brought forth." Was that laughter in his eyes? Oh how she wished should could slap that smirk off his high cheekboned face.
Seriously why do men get all the good bone structure?
"Trivial?!" Hermione exploded, "Are you absolutely serious Malfoy?"
He chuckled lowly and raised both his hands in a feigned picture of innocence. With a saccharin-sweet tone he replied, "Now Miss Granger, when am I ever not serious?" Hermione had to fight the urge to roll her eyes.
He dropped his penetrating gaze to the offending document on his desk and promptly crumpled it into a ball and tossed in into the wastebin across the room. Of course he's incredibly coordinated as well Hermione thought with a huff.
"The bill is unfinished, lackluster, and would be a waste of time for all of us-" Malfoy's voice rose as she spluttered at this insult, "-and I would hate to have to force everyone to sit through such a tedious case. We can revisit it when it is complete." He looked up at her, that smirk deepening. "Honestly, Miss Granger, I expected better from you over a subject you claim you're so passionate about."
"Unfinished?!" Hermione cried indignantly, " I've worked non-stop on this piece of legislation for MONTHS. Your incessant memos with your supposed edits made that process go at a snail's pace! It is finished!" Hermione was about to lose her mind on this man. She hoped she didn't sound as whiny as she felt, but sweet Merlin, he was working on her last nerve. She had worked constantly to get this bill up to his "standards" and when she was finally done, he rejected it! Her eyes narrowed as she was struck by a memory, "YOU even said it was done."
Malfoy shook that perfectly groomed blonde head. "No, Miss Granger. I never did." He sighed again, just a over-dramatically before. "I just grew bored with how long this was taking and moved my attention to other, more pressing matters. You simply took my silence as acquiescence."
"That's a lie!" She cried. That blasted eyebrow rose again. Suddenly the smirk had changed from mocking to one that seemed almost sinister.
"My, what an accusation." His voice was soft, dangerous. Suddenly, Hermione didn't feel as confident in her ability to "put him in the dirt" as had been her battle cry as she marched to his office. The man stood on his feet. Hermione's chin lifted as he rose to maintain eye contact, her Gryffindor stubbornness refusing to cower at this new atmosphere. In her avoidance of being physically present in a room with him, it was very easy to forget just how tall Malfoy was. He was a good head taller than her, towering over her. He put his fists down on the desk and leaned in toward her, closing the gap of space that Hermione preferred to have when interacting with anyone, especially him. He practically purred this last statement:
"Pray tell, Miss Granger, just what evidence do you have to back up this claim?"
The blush was back. Who knew that all it took was to get in her space a little and her heels would be cooled a bit? A flame of triumph blazed in him when she backed away from him. Lucius didn't want to break the lioness's spirit, no, but he was a known Dominant male, considered an Alpha and there was nothing more arousing than an equally dominant female choosing to submit to him.
Another delicious image appeared, this time of her hands tied tightly in his Slytherin green tie to the headboard, asking - no, begging - him to allow her to cum. Lucius willed his blood to not redirect itself to other areas in his body.
She spun away from him, her hands immediately going in her hair, twirling it up into a very messy bun and letting it fall, repeating this movement almost robotically. Lucius had noticed she did this when she was particularly stressed or thinking terribly hard. He already knew that she was trying to remember when he had communicated with her last about the bill. Honestly, it had been so long ago, he didn't even remember himself, but luckily for him, all his memos were set to burn or shred immediately upon being read by the intended, a trick he learned when he was with the Dark Lord so there would be no paper trail. This method's use was further emphasized now by allowing him to push another one of her buttons. Fuck, what I wouldn't do to be able to rip those buttons off that shirt.
She spun back to him, walking up to the desk and jamming that finger in his chest, no degree of fear in her, just raging frustration written all over her face.
"Regardless of evidence, which I'm sure is hidden amongst the million tiny piles of paper clippings or ash on my desk, I know you did! I wouldn't have sent it to your office for final review if you hadn't. You're just doing this to - to - to"
"To what, Miss Granger?" He prompted, amused at her newfound inability to form a proper sentence. Granger's eyes narrowed.
"To piss - me - off!" Her finger jabbed his chest at each of these words for emphasis.
Lucius laughed at her, causing those amber eyes to widen in surprise. It wasn't often he laughed and it threw others off without fail. And quick like a viper strike, he grabbed her wrist of that annoying, jabbing finger and pulled her to him, making her hips hit the side of his desk, and her spine bow so that her face was a breath away from his. Her breath caught in her throat and that blush exploded across her face. Granger made no move to get away, probably too surprised to fully analyze the situation and react. Lucius praised his Veela-enhanced speed.
"Miss Granger," Lucius lowered his voice in the way he would if he was speaking to a witch in his bed, "I assure you, if I wanted to piss you off, as you so elegantly put it, I could do so a thousand other and easier ways than to read through your billion worded bill just to deny it. Such as causing that skirt of yours to rip in just the right way to give the whole office a show." He watched intently as he spoke to her, noticing how her eyelashes batted at his vocal change and how her gaze had fallen to his mouth. Interesting that it was the tone of voice that fixated her, no necessarily the innuendo. That is, if she had calmed her racing mind to actually understand the implication.
And just as quickly as he grabbed her, he released her wrist and backed away from the desk in order to walk around and stand in front of the flustered witch.
Granger rose up from her leaning position on the desk (a pity Lucius thought that's a wonderful position) and pressed the bridge of her nose in between her thumb and index finger. Lucius wondered if she was counting to ten in order to calm down. The witch turned to him, took a deep breath, and said evenly:
"The bill is finished. I would suggest taking another look at it." She gritted her teeth, "please." Lucius could have laughed at the obvious strain playing nice put on her.
"Asking nicely now Miss Granger? Such a strategy change. But alas, I have plans and will be leaving the office soon, so that will have to wait until I have time freed up to take a more thorough look into it." He never grew tired of watching her eyes flash like that.
"Mister Malfoy, I'm not sure how thoroughly you read it the first time, but if you had, I'm sure you would realize how important it is to make this bill go through as soon as possible." It was quite amusing to see her try so hard to keep her temper in check.
"Ah yes, your passion for the werewolves. Not everyone is as - invested - as you are in their well-being, Miss Granger. They have ample reason, in my opinion, to wish they be wiped out completely." Her eyes widened in horror at his words.
"They're people. Innocent people who were never given a choice!"
Lucius stepped toward her, she didn't move. "They made their choice when they went violent," he said darkly, remembering when his Manor was overrun with the beasts.
"That was a minuscule amount! The fools that followed Greyback that thought Voldemort would actually view them on equal footing as wizards! There are so many good people out there that are actively trying to manage their symptoms, to be contributing member of society-"
"You speak of them like they have a disease. Like a common cold that can be eradicated with one Pepper-Up Potion."
"Because that's what it is! A blood disease! Something that can be managed."
"I've never seen someone manage these symptoms well," he drawled.
"Professor Lupin!" She cried forcefully. Lucius could have laughed again.
"Lupin was a weak man who hated himself. Even that monster within couldn't liven him-" Her wand was at his face, eyes blazing, magic swirling around her like a strong current. Oh he had really pressed a nerve this time.
"Don't you dare-"
Lucius shoved her against his desk, effortlessly knocking her wand out of her hand. He towered over her, hands on either side of her laid flat on the desk, effectively caging her in with his body. Granger's eyes were wide for a second, but rage overtook her once more and her mouth opened as she took breath to barrage him with insults and the like.
"Be silent, Miss Granger," Lucius hissed. He was by no means actually angry, if not a little annoyed, but it didn't hurt to remind the witch just who she drew a wand on. He noticed a shiver run down her body and her mouth immediately close at his words.
So Miss Granger, goody two shoes, was a lover of rules in more ways than one. Lucius opened his focus in order to see her Magic more in-depth. With him being this close, he could the small, minute details of her Magic. The fire had cooled slightly and had returned to its at-rest state, except now ringlets were cording around her lower waist and hips, reaching out from the area as if trying to grasp hold of the metalloid silver that was his Magical signature. Lucius was thrown.
She was aroused. Magic went to different places depending on extremes, and signatures were irritatingly obvious where they lay. The pelvic region meant arousal.
He realized that he could smell her. Gods he could smell her. Her normal scent was a lovely combination of rose and vanilla, but that heady and musky scent was unmistakably arousal and unmistakably her.
Lucius could take her right her. Spin her around, bend her over his desk, and have his way with her. Shove his cock in her dripping quim over and over again until she couldn't walk straight. Lucius gritted his teeth to try and gain some control. Sometimes the Veela could make his sex drive go haywire.
No, Granger would take time. She might be turned on physically, but she wouldn't give herself just because of that. Hell, with the way she reacted with him being in any close proximity to her, it was like she had never been that near to a male before, let alone be touched by one. So Lucius regrouped, shoved the horny Veela down, and leaned in so that his mouth was right next to her ear.
"I suggest that if you ever pull a wand on me, you have every intention of using it, witch. I don't take kindly to empty threats." She shivered again. Lucius moved his head so he was almost nose to nose with her, staring directly in her face. Steel meeting amber.
Her eyes unfocused and suddenly she blanched, dropping her head. Her magic when from a low, erotic, pulse to an erratic electrical feel. Every fiber skittered away and retreated into her torso until there was no trace on her. Lucius had only seen this reaction many times and it always meant the same thing: fear.
When panicked, Magic will flow inwardly almost as if to soothe its handler. Fear is just as powerful and unpredictable as anger, but whereas anger can create an explosion, fear can create an implosion. Magic had life of its own and would try to protect its producer from themselves. Lucius had seen this retreat happen before with magical signatures, but had never seen it actually completely disappear.
For it to completely soak into Granger, that meant she was terrified.
Hermione willed herself to get a grip. But her brain was going haywire.
It's not him. It's not him. It's not him. It's not him.
He's dead. You're alive. He's dead. You're alive.
You're safe. You're safe. You're safe.
She wanted to slide down into the fetal position so that she could breathe and regain her composure. But she would be damned if she showed weakness to Malfoy.
That's all he needs. An excuse to commit me or make me lose my job due to incompetence.
You're safe. You're safe. You're safe.
It's over. It's over. It's over.
Granger's eyes had glazed over, but panic was written all over her face as her breathing started to become erratic. Lucius was partially grateful the witch was so horrible at concealing her emotions. Judging by her face, she was somewhere far away from his office.
He had never seen a fear response from Granger even when she had caused his own temper to flare on the rare occasion. Lucius gently skimmed her mind in order to figure out how to handle the skittish witch. He usually stayed away from intruding on the minds of others, even though he was of the same calibur Legilimens as Severus was, he just had less care for the intricacies of handling the innermost thoughts of people other than himself. Generally, Granger had powerful walls built around her mind, a fortress, but in her panic, all those had crumbled like Jericho. It wasn't a penetrating breach so as to put him in her memories, just light enough to go unnoticed and allow him to read the emotionally charged thoughts that were unprotected and at the top of her mind.
He's dead. You're alive. He's dead. You're alive.
You're safe. You're safe. You're safe.
It's over. It's over. It's over.
Lucius eyebrows furrowed. He had been there when it happened. She had gone untouched. At least, to his knowledge she had.
Regardless, he didn't want the witch to associate such a powerful fear with his presence (there also was a nagging protective urge that he shoved in the back of his brain because that was unnecessary. Merlin, he wanted to fuck her, not fucking protect her).
He brought his right index finger and placed it under Granger's chin, pushing it up so that her unfocused eyes would meet his. He spoke softly to her.
"Come back, Miss Granger."
"Hermione, you're safe."
She blinked at him as her breathing slowed and her eyes refocused. She relaxed her hands that were gripping onto his robes, a frantic and unconscious need for stability. Her magic tentatively peaked out from her chest. In this state, she was open and innocent, not covering herself with a protective coat of derision aimed at him to keep him from coming too close. She seemed so small, the lionness nowhere to be seen. Lucius felt that pest of a protective urge move him to want to wrap her up in his arms and keep her safe. He looked into her gold-flecked, wide open, questioning eyes and he was lost as his Veela roared to the surface.
She was so close to him. He could feel the heat radiating from her body to his. All he had to do was tilt her head just so...lean down...and—
"Lucius," came Kingsley Shacklebolt's soothing tenor.
I know, such an awful cliffhanger! Just like the summary said, this will be a shameless smut, but with a lot of plot. Because sometimes you need just a little more than a quick bang. This is something that has been itching to be written, so let me know what you think!