This fic is a plot bunny dreamed up by AirenAstera who should get credit for any good ideas here. Note- just because I am writing this does not mean that I am giving up on Gift of the Dark Lord. I will update both fics once a week if possible.
If I get reviews, I am inspired to write more, so please remember to press that little button! Make my day!
Disclaimer: as I just stated, neither the character or plot are mine. Don't sue me!
"Did you get the girl?"
"Yes, Master, of course. Here she is."
Lucius Malfoy gestured to a couple of men in black cloaks and they threw a small figure at the man's feet. Voldemort looked down, and watched as a girl with a mass of brown hair currently matted with blood fought to stand.
The man watched as, with a huge effort, she finally pulled herself up to the greatest height she could. Catching his amused stare, she gave him what she clearly thought was a venemous stare. She had a lot to learn, but then again she was only eighteen years old.
"I am interested to know why you took the liberty of hurting the girl. Did I give you permission to do that?"
"What?" asked Lucius, before remembering who he was talking to. "Master, you have never before stopped us hurting prisoners before, and the girl is just a mudblood."
"I did not tell you that you were allowed to damage the girl. I just told you I wanted to have her brought to me."
"But you never-"
"Crucio!" Voldemort watched the blond man writhe in pain on the ground for a few moments, before releasing the spell and hissing at him, "Do not assume that you know my intentions. I am your master and it is your duty to obey only my wishes. Get out of my sight. All of you!"
The Death Eaters paused for a moment, watching the disgraced Malfoy crawl out of the chamber, then followed him. They had escaped the wrath of their master this time at least.
Voldemort turned his attention to the girl now swaying on her feet before him.
"Hermione Granger," he stated.
The girl merely glared at him.
"Answer me! Is that your name?" The thing that had once been a man knew the answer of course, but he needed to test her resolve.
Hermione stood silently before him.
Voldemort stood and slowly stalked around her, looking her up and down.
"Gryffindor courage." He muttered. "Helpful, I suppose. It will be useful to us..."
"I'll never help you!"
"Ah, she can talk," said the Dark Lord almost jovially. "It is time you learned that courage and good intentions can only get you so far, Hermione. I can show you the way to the glory I know you want. You are going to help me, and you are going to enjoy it. Obliviate!"
Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry was in turmoil.
Teachers were running here and there, dodging past the panicking Hufflepuffs to restrain the furious Gryffindors from going after their stolen friend. The Ravenclaws had retreated to the sidelines and were watching the unfolding scene with horror.
The only calm house was Slytherin, whose inhabitants were simply annoyed that the graduation party seemed to have ended. They had taken food back to their common room, and had continued to celebrate, using the kidnap of a Gryffindor as an extra reason to have a party.
Morning finally arrived, and Professor McGonagall made her way to the Gryffindor common room to find a subdued Harry and Ron sitting staring blankly into the fire.
"I think that you should come to the Headmaster's office with me, boys."
When they arrived there, they found Hermione's parents and Albus Dumbledore sitting waiting for them in silence.
"The Grangers have not yet been informed of the actual occurrences at the graduation party yet. I myself am not completely clear as to what exactly happened. I know this must upset you, but could you tell us what you remember happening?"
Harry and Ron looked at each other for a moment, before Harry said in a tired voice, "There isn't really much to tell. We were at the party, and then the Death Eaters burst in. I have no idea who it was behind the masks. They grabbed Hermione, and were gone before I could even get to my wand."
"Ronald, can you add anything to that?"
"No. I'm sorry."
The red haired boy looked utterly miserable. His head was bowed, and he was fiddling with the velvet box holding the engagement ring he had been planning to give to Hermione at the end of the party.
At that moment, the door of the office slammed open, Professor Snape stormed in.
"He won't-" he started, before taking in the group of people staring silently up at him.
"Sit down, Severus."
Dumbledore watched as the man stood uncertainly for a moment, then threw himself into an armchair. Once he had finally settled, the old man spoke again. "Tell us what you know."
"You want me to tell everyone?"
"They all have a right to know. I am sure that they already know of the part you play in the war."
The dark haired man rubbed his eyes, and sighed.
"I don't know much, but I think that Miss Granger is alive at the moment. The Dark Lord seemed angry when Malfoy hurt her, so I would have to assume that he does not mean to kill her."
"What do you think he does want with her?"
"I don't know. Maybe he plans to use her in a ransom, or as a source of inside information about the Order of the Phoenix. He doesn't seem to want to tell anyone his purpose with her."
"Is that all you can tell us?"
"Mr and Mrs Granger, I assure you that we will search for your child, and do all we can to return her to you. I am afraid, however, that this is all that may be promised for the time being. Mr Potter and Weasley, you may return to your common rooms."
Severus Snape watched the boys left the room, then wearily stood himself, leaving Dumbledore and the Grangers alone.
The Dark Lord was not as active as was expected over the next two years. Although there were a number of raids and attacks on muggles, Hogwarts was left alone, and Voldemort himself rarely made appearances.
It was with surprise, therefore, that Severus found himself at a meeting for all of the Death Eaters in a graveyard one summer's night.
Instead of the normal circle formed at such meetings, it appeared to be taking the form of a rally of sorts, Voldemort himself standing elevated on a tombstone.
"I am sure that you have been wondering about the cause for my absence over the last two years," started the man. "I shall now explain all.
"No doubt you are all familiar with the prophecy involving myself and a certain Harry Potter." Voldemort waited for the growls and hisses of the crowd to die down. "I have taken time to prepare for this event, and have been training a replacement in the unlikely event that the boy should triumph."
The people in the crowd began to murmur, and the noise level suddenly raised to a roar as a woman stepped up on the tombstone.
Deep brown curls framed a perfect face, which was calm and composed, taking in what may one day be hers. She stood proudly next to Voldemort, as if it was the place she belonged.
The noise of the crowd faded to a hush.
"Let me introduce you to Hermione, my Dark Princess."