Disclaimer: I don't own Harry Potter. I don't own any original characters. But I'll say so if I ever do.
Summery: They said the book was legendary, left by the four most memorable pranksters of the past. But when the book is found, it transports the reader back in time. When Hermione Granger wakes up to find herself in the past with the Marauders, she receives the worst shock of her life...
This story, although it is non-HBP compatible, will have minor spoilers.
So Close to You
The Book of Mischief
"Hermione, will you shut up already?" Ron snapped impatiently as she stomped after Harry and Ron as they made their way to the library.
"But Ron, the bloody book isn't real!" Hermione said exasperatedly. Ron rolled his eyes and muttered darkly under his breath.
"All right, all right, we get it Hermione. Just... just let us look for it anyways. You can, I dunno, check out a book for the essay due on Thursday," Harry said soothingly as Hermione gave him an angry look. "Don't complain! Come on, it's supposed to be made by the Marauders. And in case you're forgetting who they are—"
"I know perfectly well who they are! I just don't see why you believe in this silly nonsense! Honestly, if you're so eager about it, go ask Professor Lupin. Dumbledore said he was staying for good this year!" Hermione said shrilly.
"Ask Lupin? Are you mad!" Ron cried as they rounded a corner. Hermione glowered at him. "We can't ask him about it! He'll just deny it and tell us not to look for it! And then he'll go get it and— and— destroy it or something!"
"No he won't!" Hermione argued. Harry rolled his eyes as they bickered back and forth for several minutes whilst they walked to the library.
It was in the beginning of December in their seventh year, and the trio had overheard a conversation about a certain book left by the four pranksters a week before. Harry and Ron immediately set out to find it, both curious and excited to see what it held. Since James Potter had been a Marauder, Harry wasn't exactly going to give up his search so easily. Ron was right by his side. Hermione, however, insisted it wasn't real, that it was just a legend. She could understand why they were looking for it. And if it was real, which she highly doubted, what would it contain anyways?
"Hermione! It's legendary! We have to look for it!" Ron said.
"Hence the word legend, Ron!" Hermione bickered.
"God, you two fight like an old married couple," Harry muttered, loudly enough for them to hear. Hermione stumbled, shutting her mouth, blushing furiously and purposely not looking at Ron, whom she knew was doing the same thing as her.
It was common knowledge for the whole Gryffindor House, and most of the school, that Hermione and Ron liked each other after Ron had let it slip to the twins that he had non-platonic feelings for Hermione. Of course, Fred and George had tried numerous times to set them up, or to get Hermione to admit her feelings back. Which of course, she had fancied Ron since second year, but she wasn't about to admit that. She was waiting for him to stop being so immature and make his move.
"Okay, we're here. Hermione, go find that big book and we can finish our essays later. We'll be scouting the library for the Book of Mischief," Harry said.
As the boys watched her retreating back angrily pick an isle and walk down it, they turned and went to the other side of the library.
"So how do we know where to look?" Ron asked Harry. Harry shrugged.
"Maybe we should go ask Hermione. She seemed rather mad at us. I bet she'd like to help," Harry said with a guilty half-smile.
"No, she'll just snap at us, mostly me again. We can do this without her," Ron assured. Harry sighed, but nodded.
They walked around a bit until they found a table, and depositing their school bags they started searching. Since Hermione had taken the far left side of the library, Ron and Harry spilt the middle and right side, each searching nearly ten shelves apiece. The Restricted Section didn't count, but Harry privately thought that if they didn't find anything he would come back in his invisibility cloak.
As Harry looked over numerous books, each one as unlikely as the next, his mind started to wander. What if Hermione was right? What if the Book of Mischief wasn't real?
No! It is! Harry told himself.
But as he looked over books (he crossed the dragon's section quickly), the thought of Hermione being right made him more determined to find the damned book.
Harry wasn't exactly sure what he was looking for. Was he expecting the title to pop out at him? Or should he look in a certain book or section of the library? He kept walking slowly, thinking. If his father and his three best friends had made the legendary book, where would he put it? Harry didn't think his dad would put it out in the open. No, he would've definitely hidden it somewhere only a true prankster would look.
Harry subconsciously thought of sending an owl to Fred and George. Once they had overheard the rumor from the staffroom, Harry and Ron had told Fred and George about it. They, of course, had heard all about it and had been searching the school for it since their third year.
As he walked to the next isle, his mind wandered even more. What was he looking for? He had to find the book, but he had no clue as it where it was. Maybe it was hidden in the common room. Or maybe in a book. Or maybe somewhere only the Marauders had access to...
"The Shrieking Shack!" Harry whispered suddenly. Quickly, he turned around, running across the library in search of Ron.
As Harry agreed on taking the middle of the library, Ron went and started to look from the beginning. He decided to look in some books in their indexes if the title seemed to relate to the book.
He started in the A's. The first shelf took a long time to go through, since every title had some relevance to the Book of Mischief. Or maybe it was Ron's imagination that Author's of the Wizarding World had something to do with the Marauders. He furrowed his eyebrows and kept looking, wondering if he would find anything.
Ron Weasley's attention span wasn't very long, and it shortened considerably when he was doing boring tasks. Looking over titles, broken bindings, crushed pages and covers, his mind was somewhere else completely.
He couldn't help but think about Hermione.
They had been friends since first year, and thank god they were, because Ron agreed with Harry that without her, they would've failed their OWL's. And by the time third year had come upon them, even Ron could admit he and Hermione had gotten exceptionally close, even though they were fighting. He felt bad, afterwards, making her cry so many times about Crookshanks and Scabbers, but she had already forgiven him.
And then fourth year... Lord, he had been an idiot. He still couldn't believe that Krum had asked Hermione to the Ball. Ron still didn't know what had made him so mad, but Ron just remembered being furious at both Hermione and Krum.
Fifth year was interesting. Ron had thought a lot about Hermione over the summer, and he supposed he was being kind of a git about the House Elf thing, so that year he tried not to do it so much. But even so, he couldn't help but make her mad a few times. It was almost amusing to see her angry, but not so much when she snapped at him. And what really made him mad that year was when the subject turned to Krum. A pen pal, Hermione had said. Ron didn't believe him for a moment. If Krum wanted to be her pen pal, then Ron was as rich as the Malfoys. But Viktor Krum didn't come up a lot. And Ron was glad about it.
Then that year was his first year on the Quidditch team. He would never forget his first game, not because it was his first, but because Hermione had kissed him. Of course, it was only on the cheek but she seemed slightly flustered about it. She had kissed Harry on the cheek before, but Ron knew perfectly well that it was for luck, and it was nothing more than a friendly kiss. Still, it mad Ron a bit mad when Hermione kissed Harry and not him.
Sixth year had gone by in a flash; he had grown considerably closer to Hermione, and despite the relationship with Lavender that nearly tore Hermione in two (even he could see it, and he was dense often), they were as close as ever. He just wished that after he had ditched Lavender, he would've done something to instigate a relationship with Hermione.
Women confused him. A lot. He tried to stop thinking about Hermione, but couldn't. Her face loomed in his mind. Her name made his heart skip. Her smile lit up the room. He didn't know why he was attracted to her so, but he just was. And she knew all because of his stupidity when he told Fred and George. But Hermione didn't seem to mind. More than enough times he had heard squeals and giggles from the Girls Dormitory that sounded strangely like Hermione and Ginny. So he knew that the girls were gossiping. About him, he wasn't exactly sure.
Maybe they were, maybe they weren't.
Ron snapped out of his thoughts and looked wildly around. He heard Harry's footsteps grow louder until he jumped around a corner. Ron had been standing in one spot for all of five minutes, his hand suspended in midair. Harry looked strangely at him, and Ron lowered his hand, his ears turning red.
"What? Did you find anything?" Ron asked. Harry shook his head, but smiled widely.
"No, but I just thought of a brilliant idea. What if my dad and the others put the book where no one except for them could get it?" Harry said excitedly. Ron narrowed his eyes, thinking. Then, as it clicked, he looked suspiciously at Harry, both excited and curious.
"Harry... you don't suppose..."
"Yes Ron! They must've put it in the Shrieking Shack!" Harry cried.
Ron grinned, and they took off down the isle to grab their book bags. They sped around a corner, and hitching their bags over their shoulders, started sprinting out of the library. They slowed down enormously when Madam Pince looked up dangerously from her desk at the running children, and they smiled innocently and walked out of the library. Just as the closed the doors, they heard a high, frightened scream. They both froze, looking at each other.
"Hermione!" they said together.
They burst back into the library, Madam Pince looking around with a bemused expression, and they passed her quickly and ran down an isle. They reached the middle, and stopped. Looking at each other, they silently agreed to split up and look for her. Ron went left, Harry went right, and they started quickly down the isles.
When Ron came to the last one before the Restricted Section, he stopped, a funny feeling creeping over him. Something was wrong, he could feel it. He stopped and slowly went around the corner, looking fearfully down the isle.
What if something bad had happened to Hermione?
He walked down, spotting something lying in a heap on the floor. He ran towards it, dust flying up from the floor. He stood over it, looking down. It was her book bag, crumpled and abandoned. He turned and looked over his shoulder, and then back down the isle.
Where was she?
"Harry!" Ron called, his voice trembling. Ron heard his hurrying footsteps, and Harry rounded the corner.
"Is she—?" Harry started to say, but stopped. Ron had a weird look on his face. Harry stared down at the book bag lying on the floor.
It was Hermione's.
He bent over gradually and picked it up. He could feel the numerous books weighing the material down, the gravity pulling it towards the floor. Harry looked from the book bag up to Ron, who was staring at Hermione's possession as if it were her dead body.
"Something happened to her, Harry," Ron croaked. Harry felt scared now.
"What— who did— we should go get the map," Harry sputtered suddenly, handing her bag to Ron. Harry couldn't think of anything else to do. Ron nodded, and together they turned and ran from the library, Ron holding Hermione's book bag with his life.
Hermione let out an angry sigh, but nevertheless split from them and walked up an old isle when they reached the library. Madam Pince was at her desk, busying herself with the list of the entire library. She was mumbling angry, dark words under her breath, and Hermione giggled silently.
There was a small section of the library that had immensely old books in it, each over a thousand pages, and no one particularly liked to read them. Of course, couples used the advantage of the small section to snog like crazy because no one would interrupt them.
As Hermione peered down the old, dusty isle with thick volumes, she saw, to her satisfaction, that the isle was unoccupied. She quickly went down it, running her fingers along the bindings, making dust stick to her hands and drop like feathers down to the floor. The essay due on Thursday (it was currently Tuesday), was on an ancient Potion that Snape had set for them. It also had ties to the Dark Arts because of its effects, and Professor Lupin had told the class to do some side research, though it wasn't homework.
His eyes twinkled in Hermione's direction as she smiled, thinking she would go all out and complete it as an essay and do some research. Once again, Defense Against the Dark Arts was her favorite subject. Maybe it was Lupin's presence that had made it so fun, or maybe it was the most appealing to her. The last time she had loved it so was in her third year, when Professor Lupin had come for the first time. She didn't know what was so special about him, but he just seemed to make learning fun to the biggest extent. And she liked him a lot for that.
Hermione quickly came upon a thick volume called Ancient Spells and Potions that seemed as if it had not been touched for nearly twenty years. She pulled it out, opening the book slowly so she wouldn't damage the binding, and a musty smell rose from the book and she wrinkled her nose. The pages were thick and yellow, stained here and there with what seemed to be water or a drink of some sort. She flipped over the pages, and finding nothing satisfactory in the book, she snapped it shut and went to go put it on the shelf.
But something caught her eye, and confused and suspicious, she pulled the book in her hands back, gently bending to set it on the floor. Curious, she stood on her tiptoes and looked far into the large shelf. It seemed as if the wood of the shelf had been smashed open, and something had been stuffed in there, presumably a book.
Her heart was pounding against her ribcage now, and she thought hard. Was this the book Harry and Ron had been talking about? Was it the Book of Mischief? If it was, she didn't know what she would do. She certainly couldn't call Ron. He would never let her live it down. And Harry could never keep something so interesting and exciting a secret for long from Ron, and he would find out, and get mad at her.
One thing was for certain, if it was the book than she was in trouble. But so far, she didn't know what it was. Trembling all over, she reached back into the shelf and gently tugged at the corner of the book forced under the wood.
After a minute or so of careful pulling, she snatched it out. It was small, maybe the size of her two hands, thick and looking just as old as the rest of the books. It was a deep scarlet with gold bindings and gold trimmed pages, the stitching coming out and the binding slightly broken. Shaking with excitement and fear, she carefully opened the cover.
Inside the face of the book were four names. Her heart skipped a beat as she read them.
She was amazed, scared, and unsure of what to do. Surely this had to be the book. There could be no other name for it. She quickly turned to the first page. Her eyes were wide as she read the inscription.
You hold in your hands the Book of Mischief. No Prefect, ruling abiding prat should read this, unless you've got enough cause. This book holds every prank and plan ever performed. It was hidden for the next person to find it. Apparently, that'd be you. For a gift of amazement, please turn thirteen pages forward.
Instinctively, she started flipping pages furiously. Now she knew. It was the Book of Mischief. What could page thirteen hold in store for her?
As she reached it, she stopped, closing her eyes and taking a deep breath. It was a legend, it couldn't be true. But it was. Breathing slowly, she opened her eyes and started to read, tucking an unruly lock of brown hair behind her ear. She read over the words, the Latin pouring through her head, sinking into her mind as her eyes swam over the text, down a stanza, and then read more.
Quietly, she read the passage out loud, the dead language rolling off of her tongue.
servo lectio porro ado
Pro donum ut est in repono vobis
Vos mos reperio ut nisivos es certus
Lepor lepos porro est vacuus rememdium
Sic pradecidentivis, operor fulcio
Nonnullus causa iam, verum exsisto told
Is est non viaticus, nusquam of genus
Taman vos ero irretitus in a scelestus vicis warp
Undeviginti annus tergiversatio
Good luck to you!"
She was confused as she finished reading. She knew Latin, but not very well. She would have to take the book and translate the paragraph if she ever wanted to understand it. But then, as she went to take a step towards the table at the end of the isle to sit down, something strange started to happen. Her legs wouldn't move. In fact, they felt oddly warm, heat spreading up from her toes.
Terrified, she looked down.
Her feet looked normal, though they were rooted to the ground. She looked at the book, frightened and unsure of what to do, and to her confusion and horror, the pages of the book started to get lighter, as if there was a brightness coming from the depths of it. The bindings started to split, light forcing its way out, hitting her face and blinding her momentarily, and then started consuming the entire book. She stood frozen, horrorstruck as the blinding light spread across the page and touched her fingers, and then rapidly traveled up to her hands.
Instantly, her common sense started to kick in as it spread over her arms and across her torso, she let out a piercing scream and tried to drop the book. And then, quite suddenly, she fell forward into space, her feet leaving the ground. She was falling into blackness, flying away...
Author's Notes: as most of you readers are probably wondering by now what the weird passage was when Hermione read out of the Book of Mischief, it was in Latin. It'll do you some good to translate that if you've got the time, because I think it's like homework... heh heh. I'm a bit evil, yes, but I think you'll have some fun.
There is a time inscription in the Latin for nineteen years backwards. From the current time in Hogwarts is 1997. I know this because Harry was born in 1980. 11 years later, its 1991, his first year. Plus 6 years to go until his 7th year equals up to 1997. It says somewhere in the Sorcerer's Stone, (I think), that James and Lily got married a year after their seventh year, and then had Harry 9 months later. So minus 9 months, and a year from 1980 and you get almost 1978, The Marauder's 7th year. So 1997 minus 19 is 1978. There's your math reference. And usually, I suck at math. If you have proof that it was give or take a year when James and Lily married and had Harry, review me so I won't screw it up even more.
So did that paragraph screw you up? Here's the simple math of it.
Hermione's 7th year
—1978 The Marauder's 7th year
...,0019 Years apart
There's two extra years on there because I'm guessing that Lily and James were out of school for a year when they married, had Harry, and were murdered.
Harry is 17, but Hermione is 18 (her birthday is September 19), so it won't matter because she was in the right age group. Sorry, I had to clarify everything because if I didn't, I'd be confusing myself. And no one wants that.
Thanks so much Lainie for beta-ing this for me! You rule!
Thanks for reading! Please review!