In the beginning, this story deals with the very sensitive and controversial topic of abortion. If this offends you or if you have serious aversions to abortion in general, I strongly suggest you do not read. I've done my part to warn you, now please do yours in reading responsibly. Flaming a story you have issues with when you were warned ahead of time doesn't look very bright. The idea from this was also taken from a real experience so please keep that in mind when reviewing. And as far as the characters are concerned, it's just yet another avenue in which to bring them closer and cross the barriers that keep them apart. As always I've taken literary liberties because if I don't, they remain apart. Appreciation goes out to all those who have taken the time to review my stories in the past. It makes me thankful I'm not hiding my writing anymore.
Hermione glanced over at the sleeping form that lay next to her in the bed, white sheet covering the bottom half of his pale body, watching as his young and somewhat undefined chest slowly expanded and contracted, and was thankful he was in deep sleep, still in disbelief at what had transpired between them just thirty minutes earlier. She found herself questioning if it really happened because it seemed so absurd given their tumultuous past. For years, they'd hated each other, threatened each other numerous times, having had to be broken apart by teachers. And yet, here she lay beside him in his bed, having just given him her innocence. She inhaled slowly, wondering why she'd chosen him.
She looked away, closing her eyes and shaking her head. Of course she knew the reason why she'd chosen him. He was the most sought after and talked about boy in Hogwarts as far as the girls were concerned. From being an arrogant little prick the first couple years, he had somehow transformed into this sensual, erotic being. Whenever a group of girls were gathered, his name and some recent gossip were not far behind. He was the 'bad boy', which is why the girls wanted him.
Puberty, complete with curiosity and experimentation, had run amuck through her sixth year and into the beginning of seventh. Sixth year ended with many of her classmates excited and giddy as they described their first time, most having had pleasant experiences, only a handful having painful ones. Harry had been one with a pleasant experience and had been reluctant to tell her but found he couldn't keep it from his best friend as he thought it was wonderful. Returning for their last year found Ron telling them both about his first time over the summer and a few more of her classmates, including Ginny who was younger than her, Hermione having to promise not to tell her older brother.
Hermione was determined not to be the last virgin at Hogwarts. Even in the wizarding world, being a virgin was not a title one wanted to keep very long. She already had enough issues with everyone thinking she was the 'brain of Gryffindor' and being approached by her male schoolmates only to be asked for her help with their latest class. She didn't think she was unattractive but something kept the boys away and knew it was the fact her nose had been stuck in a book since she arrived years ago. She couldn't help it though as hunger for knowledge growled inside her. Maybe having Muggle born parents and feeling like she always had to defend herself added something to it too. She was determined to prove to everyone that great wizards didn't have to be purebloods.
Her nose wrinkled in disgust as she said it. And here she lay beside one. Even this had been calculated, having studied the facts, at least on her side. After listening to all of her friends and hearing all the rumors, she knew he would be a sure bet as long as she could get his attention. And the past couple years, his attention was only on one thing; girls. And lots of them. She played into that and was relieved when he took the bait, not caring anymore about who was and wasn't pureblood. If they were willing, he was too.
Hermione decided she needed to leave, not sure how long he would sleep, but knowing she didn't want to be there when he awoke. She slipped from the sheets slowly and methodically, listening for any sound, watching for any movement that might prove him awake, silently putting her clothes back on. She didn't regret her decision, actually feeling relieved it was over. She'd never really thought it was a big deal anyway. It was just sex to her. To everyone else, it was a monumental point in life. That's not what she was about anyway. Sexual prowess she did not possess and didn't really care to. She was much more interested in spells and potions and learning all she could about magic.
Running a hand through her hair, attempting to smooth her tousled brown locks, Hermione walked gently across the floor, as not to make a sound, carefully closing the wooden door behind her, hardly able to wait until she reached her dormitory so she could shower.
"Hey I've been looking for you," Ginny greeted when Hermione walked into their bedchamber. "Were you outside? Your face is all flushed."
Fighting a blush that would have matched the coloring on her face already present, Hermione waved her hand. "Oh I was hiding in the library," she said nonchalantly. "You know me, ever the bookworm."
"Oh okay then," Ginny said. "Will you help me with this scroll I have to write?"
"Let me shower," Hermione said, rushing to get clean clothes. "Then I'll help you."
As Hermione went through her daily routines of classes and homework, she wondered if he'd said anything to anyone. It really wouldn't have mattered if he did. She had no problem admitting it but wasn't running to tell her friends either. It just wasn't her. Conversation would come up where she could tell them. In a few days perhaps.
She avoided eye contact with him as much as possible, accidentally catching a wink from him once in awhile, smiling and looking away as quickly as she could. She was assuming he was looking for a repeat performance and, while it had been rather good she guessed, she wasn't ready for another go. That one sufficed. She was sure as she got a little older her priorities would change and then she'd be more interested. For now, graduation was the priority and absolutely nothing would change that.
"Ron, must you make the clicking sound?" she asked visibly annoyed as a group was scattered about the common room studying and doing homework.
Wide eyes looked at her in surprise. "What?" he asked innocently, unaware of what he'd been doing.
"Whatever you're doing with your mouth," she threw at him. "It's terribly aggravating." Her head bent down towards her book to pick up where she'd left off reading.
Ron glanced at Harry who confirmed, "You were doing something, Ron."
He made a face and said, "Sorry then." It wasn't the first time she'd been snippy with him but decided not to say anything. She was in a mood and it was just better to leave her alone, figuring she'd be better the next day as it was Saturday and everyone was going to Hogsmeade.
Hermione didn't go to Hogsmeade, saying she was 'just tired' when everyone inquired why she wasn't going. She saw no point really. She still had one scroll to finish and four chapters to read before Monday and didn't see how drinking butterbeer and buying sugar sweets would help her with it. With the common room empty and silent, it would be perfect for her to finish her studies.
"Harry," Ron said as they entered Zonko's Joke Shop. "Does Hermione seem a little more…high-strung than usual?"
"A bit I guess," Harry answered. "She does have more classes than we do though."
"I know," Ron said. "She just…I dunno…doesn't seem like herself."
Harry smiled. "She's just stressed out," he excused. "You know how she gets. Especially with this being our last year and all."
Ron hoped that's all it was. Even though it had never worked between them as far as dating, he still cared for her a great deal.
"Well, well, Miss Granger," Professor Snape hissed when she walked in ten minutes late. "Care to share with the class the reason for your tardiness?" His voice was low and even, his thin lips forming a straight line as his dark eyes bore into her, watching her walk over and sit beside of Harry, noticing her face was pale.
"No I wouldn't care to," she told him, defiance in her eyes, attitude in her tone and glaring back at him as she pulled out her parchment.
His eyes narrowed and lips sneered when he said, "You insufferable little…thirty points from Gryffindor!" He turned around, heading for his desk.
"What?" she shrieked in shock. "That's ridiculous!" There was no way she would tell the entire class she'd been throwing up in the bathroom.
Whipping around, surprised by her outburst, he asked quietly, "Care to make it fifty, Miss Granger?"
Harry put his hand on her forearm, silently warning her to remain quiet, thankful she did, glancing at Ron on the other side of her with wide questioning eyes. It wasn't like her to talk back, especially to Snape.
As Harry, Ron, Hermione and Ginny left the Hall after dinner on their way to the common room, Harry decided to ask Hermione if anything was wrong. Little things seemed out of place with her that he didn't understand. How she'd been recently was extremely out of character for her, even with stress.
"Hermione," he began as they briskly walked, ignoring the portraits as they talked when they passed. "You've not been yourself lately and we're really concerned. Is something wrong? You know you can tell us."
She shook her head. "I'm fine, really," she told them. "Sorry if I seem a little off. I'm fighting a cold or something and have so much schoolwork to do. Everything is just catching up with me I guess."
"Maybe you should go see Poppy," Ron offered. "She could take care of the cold part."
"I could try to help with some of your work," Ginny offered with a small smile.
"I appreciate it," she told her friends. "But I'll be fine. Really."
A week later as Hermione sat in her Dark Arts class, her stomach began to cramp. Great, she thought. Just what I need now. And with no necessities. Sometimes I hate being a girl. Trying to remember what the date was, she realized it was that time. Wonderful. Thankful when class ended, she rushed to the nearest bathroom, expecting to find proof of her cramps but discovered nothing. Interesting, she thought. Must not have hit yet. That works out well.
Hermione spotted Ginny in the hall as she always did on her way to Transfiguration and flagged her down. "Do you have any…uh…necessities?" she asked, raising an eyebrow, hoping the younger girl would catch her meaning.
"Not paying attention to the calendar again?" Ginny teased, fumbling through her bag, happy to help her friend, handing her what she needed.
"Thank you," Hermione said, quickly slipping it into her own bag. "I owe ya."
Paying attention to Professor McGonagall was near impossible as Hermione felt quick sharp pains in her stomach. Not like my usual cramps, she thought. But they still hurt like hell. She brewed pain elixir for such times but didn't have any with her as she hadn't been thinking about it and now there was no way to run all the way across the castle to her dormitory and run all the way back for Potions, not without being late and probably getting detention from Snape. Dammit, she thought.
Maybe if I ask nice enough, he'll give me something, she thought, quickly leaving Transfiguration, determined to be early to Potions. He has to have something I could take for pain. She hated to ask but pain wasn't something she tolerated very well and knew that if she didn't give him one hundred and fifty percent of her attention, he would yell at her and take points away and with the way she'd been feeling lately, she'd end up in detention for telling him to go to hell. Better to just ask.
Hermione was relieved when she walked into the classroom and saw only a couple other students, putting her books down at the table where she usually sat.
"Miss Granger," he scowled from his desk in the corner, lifting only his dark eyes towards her. "I'm honored. You're actually early."
She walked over towards his desk, playing with her hands. Just ask him, she told herself. "Professor…I was wondering…do you have some type of…pain elixir I could take…just a little bit of?" she asked quietly.
He lifted his head then, strands of black falling to place as his eyes scanned her. "You don't seem to be in pain," he observed, corners of his mouth curling up in annoyance.
"But I am," she told him. "My…stomach hurts…please…I just need a little bit. It affects me…being able to pay attention like I should."
Putting his quill down beside the papers he was grading, Professor Snape said, "Well we certainly can't have that, Miss Granger, now can we?" He stood up, black cloak flowing behind him, walking over to a small cabinet in the back of the classroom with Hermione following him.
She watched as he pulled out a handful of small vials, studying each before handing her one with green liquid in it. "Just a few sips," he instructed. "This is a powerful potion."
Hermione did as she was told and gave the vile back, immediately feeling warmth spread through her body. "Thank you," she said with a small smile, quickly finding her seat. One more class, she thought. Then I can go lay down and feel better.
Two days later, Hermione found herself very confused and scared. While her stomach was still cramping, occasionally sending a reminder flash of pain through her abdomen, nothing else was happening and she didn't understand. Cramps never lasted two days with nothing to follow nor did they feel as they usually did. Well I have been under a great deal of stress, she thought. I know that has an effect on it. And who knows what was in that elixir of Snape's I took. Maybe there was an ingredient in there that has pushed it off a couple days. I'll wait a few more days and see what happens.
Harry, Ron and Ginny knew something was wrong but their friend wasn't telling them anything. They noticed how she'd wince as if in pain once in awhile, her answer to their questions of concern always being that she was fine, and how during classes her mind seemed elsewhere, which was definitely not like the studious Hermione, always one step ahead of the teacher. They'd also noticed her mood swings and were never sure which version they'd get, either the snappy one or the nice one.
Ginny decided to approach her one night as they were getting ready for bed. Since Hermione had been halfway pleasant through the evening, she thought now was the time for some 'girl talk'.
"Can I talk to you a minute?" Ginny asked as they changed into their nightclothes.
"Of course," Hermione answered slipping her nightgown over her head, lifting her thick brown hair out from underneath with both hands then flopping down to her bed.
Sitting down beside her, Ginny said gently, "Hermione, I know something is wrong, more than just stress about school." She paused. "Are you sick?"
With a sigh, Hermione answered, "I don't know."
Ginny thought for a moment. "Has anything different happened in the past month?" she asked curiously, figuring that was about how long her friend had been acting funny.
Biting her lip. Hermione thought this was perhaps the time to tell about her recent experience with a certain someone. "Well…actually…yeah something did happen," she admitted with a small smile.
Ginny noticed her look and the twinkle in her eyes. "Did you…" she began to ask in surprise. "No…you didn't…did you?"
Hermione nodded as Ginny started laughing.
"Bitch!" Ginny said with a laugh. "Why the bloody hell didn't you tell me? You've had me going out of my mind worrying about you and all you did was get laid!"
Hermione laughed at the girl's reaction. "Sorry didn't mean to worry you," she said.
"So?" Ginny prompted. "You must tell me. Who was it? How was it? Details!"
Hermione laughed, taking the next few minutes to provide enough detail to satisfy her curiosity, amused by her giggling and wide eyes.
"You little hussy," Ginny said still giggling. "Was he good though? I've heard quite a few stories about him."
"And what do I have to compare it to?" Hermione asked. "I guess he was. He wants to do it again but I don't."
"And why not? I would!" Ginny exclaimed. "Can I take your place?"
"No you can't," Hermione told her. "Besides I haven't been feeling good. I think I'm getting sick or something. I should go see Poppy soon."
"You seem to be in pain once in awhile," Ginny said. "You look sometimes like you're wincing."
"I am," she agreed. "My stomach hurts."
"Your cramps were days ago," Ginny said confused.
"I know. That's what's weird," Hermione said. "Nothing's happened."
Hermione shook her head. "I took some pain elixir of Snape's the other day though," she offered. "I have no idea what that god awful man put in it."
Ginny face fell into deep concern. "Did you use a protection spell?" she asked.
"Who cast it?"
Ginny was worried now. "Hermione, I think you should go see Poppy tomorrow morning," she said gravely. "Forget classes and everything and just go. This sounds like…I mean…well you might be…"
"What?" Hermione said, not liking the look on her friend's face.
"You need to make sure you're not…pregnant," Ginny said quietly, eyes apologetic.
Hermione's eyes grew wide with shock. "Pregnant?" she repeated. "Oh I highly doubt that. It's probably just stress."
"Well it all seems a little odd," Ginny said. "Your mood swings, cramps with nothing to show for them and the fact he cast the protection spell. What if he was trying to get back at you? Even subconsciously or something? This could be serious."
Hermione forced a smile. "I'm sure I'll be fine," she reassured the girl. "Now we both have early classes so let's go to bed. Don't worry about me."
As she slipped between the cool cotton sheets, hearing the rustling of Ginny doing the same, thankful for the darkness when the lights went out per her friend's command, Hermione found herself unable to fall asleep. Pregnant. Could she be? No, it had to be stress. It had only been her first time and they did use a spell. Why should she be pregnant? And that was the last thing she needed now anyway. Her studies and graduation were the only priorities she had at this point in life. She wasn't even sure if she ever wanted children but knew she certainly didn't want any now. It had to be stress. It had to be.
But as the darkness closed around her, that word lingered in the back of her mind like a splinter, demanding attention and throbbing, causing everything around to swell up in fever. Making a mental note, she decided to visit her favorite place and find out how to diagnose herself to find out if she was or wasn't. Once she'd confirmed she wasn't, then she'd go see Poppy to try and find out what was really wrong.
As her fingers lightly touched the leather covered spines, her eyes scanned the names of each book. Yes this should tell me, she thought, taking Basic Wizard Medicine from the dusty shelf. She flipped the first couple pages to skim the index, immediately flipping more pages until she came to the chapter of pregnancy. Come on, come on, she thought as her eyes scanned over the words. Yes! This is it! To determine if someone is pregnant, she read. Point your wand to the patient's abdomen and use the spell 'Lumos Natalimate'. Allow the wand tip to hover as it will cast a blue glow over the stomach area. If it turns yellow, the patient is pregnant. If it remains blue, the patient is not pregnant. There is no mistake possible with this method.
"Hermione, what are you doing in the medicine section?"
Snapping the book closed and whipping around, she saw Ron looking at her with a curious expression on his face. Heart pounding, she tried to calm herself before answering. "I was…looking up…a potion for my headache," she quickly lied, knowing she could do better.
"Oh," he said. "Are you feeling any better?"
She forced a smile. "I'll be fine," she answered as she usually did, grateful when he walked away. That was close, she thought as she left the library in a rush, heading for the girls bathroom that was never used, thanks to Moaning Myrtle. She could perform the spell there without being interrupted to confirm she wasn't pregnant and then go see Poppy.
Classes could wait at this point as she was further ahead than most anyway and missing one certainly wouldn't do any damage. Quickly she made her way around the halls and down stairs, dangerously close to the dungeons, thankful all the students and teachers were in classes so she wouldn't be seen. Once inside the vacant and unused bathroom, she pulled out her wand, pointing it at herself and quickly muttering, "Lumos Natalimate!"
This is silly, she thought to herself, watching the sky blue colored glow surround her stomach. I know I'm not preg…
She watched in horror as the blue glow began to swirl and circle, slowly melting and changing into a bright shade of yellow.
Immediately her heart began to pound as her stomach churned with nausea. "No," she said out loud in disbelief. "No it can't be. I can't be…"
She ended the spell, performing it again, achieving the same result, dropping her wand to the tile floor in shock. Oh no, what am I going to do, she thought. I don't understand. We used a protection spell. Why didn't it work? He certainly wouldn't have done this on purpose, not Mr. Loverboy himself. Should I tell him? No I can't tell him. He wouldn't care and it would be all over the school in minutes that the 'brain of Gryffindor' was knocked up. No, I can't tell a soul, not one. Should I keep it? Of course I shouldn't keep it. I don't even want it. I'm not interested in children. But how do I get rid of it? A potion or a spell…there has to be one I could find to get rid of this thing.
"Have you come to join me?" Moaning Myrtle asked, floating down to where Hermione had slumped to the floor. "You don't look very good."
As the initial shock of her discovery was wearing off, intense emotion took its place. Looking at the apparition before her, Hermione's eyes filled with tears. "I'll be okay," she said quietly, quickly wiping salty droplets with the back of her hands, trying to fight the urge to throw herself on the floor in a tirade of sobs. Her breaths had shortened and consequently was near a panic attack as she grabbed her wand and ran from the bathroom, headed for her dormitory as it would be empty and she could be alone.
Even though the hallways were full of students and teachers, Hermione was oblivious to them all as tears burned her face, her hair and cloak swishing behind her as she ran. She was pregnant and in disbelief. Brilliant Hermione Granger had managed to get herself knocked up.
"Hermione!" Harry yelled when she blew past him. "What's wrong?"
She kept running. As she turned her last corner before the staircase that would lead to her destination, she nearly ran into Professor Sprout and Professor Snape.
"Twenty points from Gryffindor!" he bellowed, as he had to jump out of her way or be knocked down.
Hermione didn't care if he took away every single point Gryffindor had. She had a crisis on her hands. Pregnant. That word repeated itself over in her head like a bad song that one couldn't forget. Up the stairs she ran, nearly yelling her password at the portrait, eliciting a gasp from the woman, hastily opening to allow Hermione inside. Straight up to her bedchamber she ran, collapsing on the bed in a fit of rage and fear, quickly wetting her pillow with tears, as she cried and pounded the mattress with her fist. Why? Her voice screamed inside her head. Why did this happen? How did this happen? Why now? What do I do? I can't keep it. But how do I get rid of it? What will happen? What if there are complications? What if I can't find anything to get rid of it?
A couple hours later, Hermione awoke, wondering when she'd fallen asleep, finding her face stained with dried tears, her bloodshot eyes burning and her throat hurting. She got up from her bed and headed for the bathroom, washing her face and brushing her hair. As she stared at herself in the mirror, she realized just how awful she looked. How was she going to hide this? Harry had seen her running through the hall and knew she'd be bombarded with questions from him later as well as from other classmates who hadn't seen her all day. What would she say that would sound convincing? Maybe she could say she was sick, which would explain her pale skin and the frenzy in her eyes, and just not tell them any details.
Hermione left the dormitory, headed once again for the library. She needed to begin research into solving this abominable problem she had as it was imperative to get rid of it as soon as possible. She couldn't afford for it to affect her studies as that would be unacceptable by her standards. As she practically stomped through the halls, she realized her fear was quickly transforming into anger. If that prick had done this to her on purpose, he'd pay dearly. How dare he perform the spell wrong? He had better hope it was all a mistake. If she ever caught wind of the slightest notion it had been on purpose…
WHAM. Two bodies crashed together causing both to fall.
"Miss Granger!" Professor Snape hissed, slowly standing up, adjusting his cloak around him, black strands of hair framing his scowling face. "What is the meaning of this? I should assign you detention for the next month!" He toward above her, glaring through angry black eyes.
Returning his hatred from her own unbridled rage, Hermione narrowed her eyes. "I don't give a damn what you do!" she exclaimed, quickly getting up and walking away from him.
Drawing his wand, aiming at her, Professor Snape warned, "You will come back here this instant or I will make you by force." Each word was said slowly and distinctly, contempt dripping from each syllable.
Hearing his threat, Hermione spun around, rage blazing in her dark eyes. "What?" she snapped, crossing her arms.
The teacher studied her for a moment, never having seen her like this. While he wasn't particularly found of her and would have enjoyed nothing more than forcing her to clean his classroom and everything in it for the next month, a deeper instinct told him there was something very wrong. "Would you care to enlighten me as to what your problem is today?" he asked. "First you nearly knock over me and Professor Sprout and now you actually succeed with me. And this attitude…" He paused. "It's not like you."
"People can change," she quipped, raising her eyebrows to make her point, mentally daring him. "Do whatever you have to do. I really don't care right this moment."
Indignant, Professor Snape bit back his want to assign her detention and instead forced himself to say, "Miss Granger. I will allow this little…display of anger and pretend I didn't notice your insolence." He lowered his voice and added, "And whether you like it or not, I am still a teacher at Hogwarts, and if you are in some kind of trouble, it is your responsibility to tell me, or another teacher, so that appropriate action can be taken. Do you understand?"
He noticed her lip was quivering but unsure if the cause was sadness or anger, assuming the latter. "Very well," he said. "Do not expect such…kindness again for the next outburst from you will end up in detention."
As Hermione retreated from him, continuing on her way, he watched as she walked, his expression showing confusion. In seven years of teaching her, he'd never witnessed such intense emotion from her, choosing to keep him mind closed, knowing he could have learned the truth if he'd wanted to. He would keep an eye on her the next few days though, unable to shake the uneasy feeling around him.
Not having much time to spend in the library, Hermione returned to the common room, still quite upset, not able to find what she was looking for yet. When she walked in, she noticed that everyone stopped talking and turned to look at her. What is their problem, she thought, thoroughly frustrated. She wasn't in the mood to talk and headed towards the staircase that led to her bedchamber.
"Hermione," Harry called out, hurrying over to her. "You weren't in any of your classes today. And when I saw you in the hall…"
"Did you tell everyone I was crying?" she accused, anger obvious in her tone. "Was everybody talking about me just now? Is that why they stopped when I walked in? Can't a girl just be sick without it turning into the popular topic of conversation?"
"Well…I…we're just…very worried," Harry said sweetly. "We've been friends a long time and been through quite a lot together and…well…we've never seen you like this. You can't blame us for making sure you're all right."
"I've just got a…a cold is all," Hermione lied. "And with my studies, I have more pressure than what I'm used to and…"
"Geez Hermione, we all have more stress this year," Ron said upset, unsure how to show it. "You act like you're the only one with any issues. All we want to do is help, if we can."
"Well you can't!" she exclaimed, stomping her way up the stone stairs. "So just leave me alone!"
Harry turned to face everyone's confused glances. "That went well," he said dryly. "Ron, maybe next time you should just let me handle it."
Ron made a face. "Sorry mate," he said. "But I don't get it."
"Neither do I," Harry agreed. "Come on, we've got schoolwork to finish."