Disclaimer: None of this is mine, inspired by a movie I was watching.
Summary: Randomness...a series of events leading to an end. Definite one shot..no more after this. I love the Cure.. the lyrics are from them from the album 'Disintegration' Songs are "Prayers for Rain", "The Same Deep Water" and "Closedown" This fic is basically leaps through time, viewing moments in Severus and Hermione's relationship until the ultimate end is reached.
Praying for Rain
-you shatter me
your grip on me
a touch so plain
so dull it kills...-
"I said no Hermione."
"I don't care. I wont let you go alone."
"And I wont have you accompany me, not tonight and not for this." His tone was quiet, betraying a sadness hidden insufficiently within his lean frame. She though, was all tension, with anger radiating as clearly as any candle lit around them. Squaring himself, Severus ran a hand through his limp hair before sighing and turning away from Hermione. "I'm running out of time." Glancing over his shoulder, he walked softly to his wardrobe and pulled a heavy cloak from it. Hefting the material in his left hand, he withdrew a silver mask from one of the inner pockets. Turning, Severus saw the look of disgust on Hermione's face.
"I hate that thing." The conviction in her tone battled with fear, and the wavering of her voice sounded far too loud in the darkness of the chamber.
"Then you hate me as well. But kiss me good-bye, it is the very last thing I want before I go." He watched calmly as she strode up to him, nearly colliding with his still form. In the light of the candle and fire of the hearth, her anger seemed to emanate and consume her. So it did not surprise him when he detected the shift in her weight as her hand came up. The dull sensation of her palm striking his face did little to startle him and he merely absorbed her forceful blow.
"You come back to me. Or Merlin help me.." The tears broke through and cut off the rest of her threat. Roughly, Severus pulled her into his arms and held her shuddering body tightly. His nose resting in her hair, he inhaled deeply and tried desperately to imprint the memory of her in his mind.
"My Wife. My Hermione." Tipping her chin up, Severus captured her lips in a fierce kiss, as if trying to absorb her into his very body. As he felt Hermione relax and begin to slide her arms around his waist, he withdrew quickly. Before she had time enough to protest and clutch him to her, he had slipped a folded bit of parchment into her hand and turned from her. The slamming door brought her back into reality.
Kiss me good-bye. Pushing out before I sleep. It's lower now and slower now, the strangest twist upon your lips. But I don't see and I don't feel, but tightly hold up silently my hands before my fading eyes. And in my eyes your smile. The very last thing before I go... I will kiss you, forever on nights like this. I will kiss you and we shall be together...
-and tired the hours
all waiting for the rain-
Two year Earlier...
"You're an insufferable man Severus. You're petty and cruel and you enjoy tormenting people for the sheer fact that it makes you feel better about the type of man you are." Her voice was soft and slightly slurred as she spoke to the dark man across the table from her.
"And this Miss Granger, is the result of what expert observations exactly? The biased opinions of a silly chit and a former student who I had to suffer through for seven long years, along with the rest of your equally intolerable class? All of whom have equally flattering opinions of me" The acidity of his tone should have been enough to warn off even the densest of people. Hermione however, was not deterred.
"Not at all Severus." He looked at her expectantly, fingers poised in their position above the pitted wooden table top in the kitchen of Number 12 Grimauld Place. As his fingers fell and drummed once against the wood, he spoke.
"Then pray tell exactly what possible excuse do you have to offer for your gross displays of continual disrespect?" Folding his arms across his chest, Severus leaned back slightly in his chair and glared at the woman before him.
"I shall tell you a secret Severus. I need a way to fill these empty hours of greed and this useless need to feel again. And feeling hate for you makes it easier to wake up in the morning." She said it with a half smile, but there was no joy in her features. Rather like a grimace, she looked as if something distasteful had just occurred to her but oddly enough she wasn't looking at him anymore. Her gaze had shifted to the window just over his left shoulder. There was a window behind her as well and Severus could see the beginnings of a heavy rain falling just beyond the glass pane. Looking back at her, he gave her an appraising glance.
"And tired the hours, all spent praying for the rain." With that quiet whisper he drew her gaze to him again but paid it no mind. With a sigh, he stood and was suddenly struck by how exhausted he had become. Hermione eyed him carefully as he pushed his chair back under the table and stood for a moment. He watched her for a moment in return, his gaze flicking to an open bottle of Ogden's, just beyond her fingertips. Lingering over their conversation for the briefest of moments, he frowned and reached to take the bottle from her reach. She offered no protest, just continued watching him. "I think Miss Granger, that perhaps you have had enough of all this. Maybe we all have." Without bothering to offer an explanation he set the bottle in the sink and disappeared through the door.
Four Months Later...
Their uneasy friendship had never been explained to the others. It just was. It appeared as suddenly as spring rain, but had turned out to be far more lasting.
-closing down and never sleep for wanting hours-
Two months Later...
"The others are talking." She spoke quietly.
"Let them. It is nothing new. Soon enough something else will catch their interest." Dismissing the news with a wave of his hand, Severus bent back over a potions journal.
"Have you heard what they are saying?" She sat on a stool in his lab, watching him and the cauldron to her left alternately.
"No, it is of no concern of mine what those idiots babble about." Hearing her sigh, he smiled to himself and continued reading. Several minutes later, he closed his book and walked quietly to where Hermione was sitting. Her back was to him now, obviously out of frustration for his lack of interest. Smiling again, he watched her stirring the cauldron for a few more minutes before he spoke quietly, making her jump. "Are your dreams still disturbing you?"
"Only sometimes. The treatment has helped." She could not hide her disappointment fully and let out a soft sigh.
"Good, but it still worries me. It's been nearly eight months and yet you're still having them."
"I told you I was fine. They're just dreams." They fell silent for a long moments. Severus shifted uncomfortably.
"What are they saying?"
"My dreams?" Hermione asked it innocently enough but still drew an exasperated sigh from the Potions Master.
"No! Insolent...You will not tell me of those anyway. The gossip you're so insistent upon sharing. What are they saying?"
"They think we are lovers." Severus paled slightly and turned away. Hermione's next breath was choked and she went on stirring.
-I really don't know what I'm doing here. I really think I should've gone to bed tonight -
A week Later...
"What will this mean?" Her voice was quiet in the darkness, but still loud enough to catch his attention. He was still and quiet for a moment, a smile spreading across his lips in the dark.
"The most horrible thing I can imagine."
"What? What do you mean?" Hermione sounded a mix between afraid and very cross. Severus's smile widened to a grin. He turned to face her, the sheets sliding from his chest to pool across his hips. Stroking a finger across her cheek he smiled warmly.
"Tonks was right. About us being lovers. Though admittedly, the chain of events are a bit altered."
"You're terrible, you know that? You nearly gave me a heart attack."
"We can't have that, you've still got plenty of work to get done on that potion. Not to mention the fact that at this moment I feel I can't keep my hands off of you for any longer. Illness would most certainly ruin my continued plans for the rest of the evening."
"Well...at least you're priorities are well ordered. Git." Her soft giggle was silenced as he bent to kiss her.
-there's no-one left in the world that I can hold onto -
4 Months Later...
"With this ring...I thee wed."
Several Hours Later...
"My wife. My Hermione."
Three Months Later...
"I am afraid the date for the end of this war has been set. I am also afraid that this may be the last time we can dine together, all of us. The road ahead will be bitter and I will not lie. Some of us will never again return to our friends, our loved ones after it is over. But for those of us who depart, the living shall keep alive the memories of the fallen." Finished speaking, Albus Dumbledore sat heavily in his chair and stared out at the faces sitting before him. Young and old alike had gathered in the last sanctuary. Strength and camaraderie went hand in hand. The old wizard hoped it would be enough.
Thirty Minutes Later...
The chamber was dimly lit by fire and the pair sat on the old sofa in front of the warmth of the hearth. Severus absently brushed Hermione's arm in a gentle motion while she laid with her head securely against his chest. Neither had spoken since their return from Dumbledore's office. Both had parts to play, roles to live out. But neither could find comfort in the fact that the end was near.
"I wish it wasn't you that had to go."
"Who else but me?"
"I don't care, let me be selfish. I don't want to lose you."
"I will always be with you Hermione. Just as you will always be with me. You give me strength. Loving you will give me strength to do what I need to. And..if I di.." Hermione cut off the last word with a fierce kiss and Severus could feel her warm tears as his hands came up to caress her cheek.
"Don't you dare." Hysterical, she clutched him desperately and buried her head in his shoulder.
"I said no Hermione."
"I don't care. I wont let you go alone."...
A week Later...
It had been a week since the end of the world had come and gone. A week since the dead were counted, the missing tallied and the living celebrated. A week since she had seen him. A week and her last words were her poorly expressed contempt for their unfair circumstances. No one had seen him. No one knew. But somehow...she knew.
It was in the early fog of an autumn morning that she was walking. The grounds of Hogwarts had never looked so lifeless and desolate, or maybe that was just her. She didn't really care. Hermione didn't join in the celebrations, the rejoicing masses made her feel ill. Why were they allowed to be happy when she'd had it ripped from her?
Supporters had pestered her endlessly, offering solace and comfort. All of it fell on deaf ears. None of it though, was more maddening than the words from the man who had sent Severus off to fight a battle no man should have faced alone. The quiet hours in Dumbledore's study nearly drove Hermione insane. She couldn't stand his piercing gaze or the guilt that he seemed to radiate in an effort to console her. Mostly she wanted to hit him, the rage at him for what he'd done. And he'd done it knowingly.
Stifling a choking sob, Hermione turned as the last of the fog was burning away from the grounds. Her slow but sure footsteps took the winding path towards the distant castle. It was the sudden silence that made her stop and look around. An eerie silence that fell so suddenly it seemed tangible. She saw the dark form approaching from the edge of the forest almost at once. Before she realized what she was doing, her feet were carrying her towards him. It was him. She'd known. Somehow she'd known.
He gathered her in his arms and held her tightly. His body felt weak, Hermione could feel him trembling beneath her grasp and brought him gently to his knees. His lips found her quickly, and after a searing kiss their foreheads rested together. Neither had spoken and in the stark silence of the grounds, even their silent greeting had seemed amplified. Finally, Hermione managed to get a word past the lump in her throat.
"My Husband." The harsh whisper burned her ears, but Severus had never heard anything so sweet before in his life. Shakily, he drew a breath and traced the trails of tears wetting her cheeks.
"My Wife. My Hermione."
A/N. Bizarre? Yes, I thought so too. Hopefully this made some sense.