Prologue: Down the Rabbit Hole
Her legs, her arms, her head, her heart, everything. Blood and tears stained her face. She cracked her eyes open slowly. Her wand lay a few feet from her. She tried to move but immediately regretted the action. Pain laced through her abdomen, damn that fanatical, black hearted, witch.
She rolled herself over so that she lay on her back and hungrily inhaled the cool, earth-scented air. She pushed herself up gingerly to rest against the cobble-stoned wall behind her. Brown eyes flitted wearily to her stomach. Blood seeped through the injury continually. Thankfully, it was only a flesh wound. Gripping a protruding edge of rock, she heaved herself up with some effort. Stumbling over to the other side of the corridor, she retrieved her wand and muttered a quick spell to seal the gash. Leaning against the wall, she allowed herself to assess the current situation. She felt like she'd just been trampled by a herd of centaurs.
Judging by her surroundings, she determined that she was indeed, still located within the castle, however now, it was merely a matter of where.
It was late when Seamus ran into the library to warn her. The professors had gone ahead to ward the castle before it could be breached. An earth-shattering bang resounded throughout the structure, clearly announcing their failure. Her peers were running through the halls in panic and she swiftly called them to order. Leading them to the secret passage beneath the One-eyed Witch, she was able to get the remaining students out of the castle safely.
Professor Mcgonagall ran down the hallway, Flitwick and Binns in her wake, "Miss Granger, thank heavens. Are the other students safe?" The Scottish woman had questioned, frantically.
"Yes, they are on their way to Hogsmeade through the One-eyed Witch passage."
"Brilliant girl. We have little time for idle-chit chat. Death Eaters have invaded the castle. I have sent for re-enforcements, we will have to hold on until they arrive, I'm afraid."
Hermione nodded in understanding, her heart rate increased as a wave of fear washed over her, "Just tell me what to do."
Suddenly, a sickening smile that was anything but Mcgonagall spread across the elder woman's face, the two men behind her chuckled. The young Gryffindor felt her blood turn to ice. Every cell in her screamed to run, but she held her ground lifting her chin in defiance. It was her duty to guard the entrance, if she was going to die, it would be protecting her fellow students.
"You, my dear, need do nothing, but stay put, like a good little girl, and you may just live to see the light of day." The voice that emitted from her head of house was all too young and familiar as the figure before her rippled like a mirage and transfigured into the wild-haired, pale-faced female.
"I highly doubt that, Lestrange."
The woman smirked in response, "Hmm, you are a smart one." She giggled insanely pulling out her wand.
"Expelliarmus!" Hermione exclaimed.
Bellatrix easily shielded herself from the spell, "Is that all the greatest witch of her age is capable of? I must admit I'm rather disappointed."
Her comrades smirked.
Shrugging, she sighed, "Oh well, and here I was hoping for a bit of late night sport."
Hermione took advantage of the woman's monologue and using wordless magic, discreetly stupefied the two behind her.
"You talk too much." Hermione provoked.
Beady black eyes sparked in anger, "In a hurry to die, aren't we? Crucio!"
Bellatrix screeched out and Hermione threw herself to the floor, having anticipated the spell. She attempted a second Stupify, but missed, hitting "Binns" again.
"Crabbe, Goyle, what's wrong with you oafs, get moving!" She ordered when "Binns" had failed to side-step the spell. Then her eyes widened when it dawned on her.
"Wordless magic, now I'm impressed. You should be proud!"
Spells were being cast back and forth between the women for a good fifteen minutes when Hermione realized the witch was merely toying with her. Letting her believe she was actually able to hold her own against a Death Eater, lulling her into a false sense of security then going in for the kill, literally. A blasting charm struck her square in the chest and knocked Hermione against the wall. Ignoring the pain, she quickly shot up and cast a jelly-legs jinx. Bellatrix wobbled stupidly before falling incredulously to the floor.
"Finite incantatem." She screeched.
Arising, she aimed another blasting charm at Hermione.
The girl was launched across the ground. Her wand flew out of her hand. Breathing heavily, she struggled to push herself up and reached desperately for her wand. The black, pointed, front of Bellatrix's boot descended upon her hand, pressing down without remorse. Hermione bit down on her tongue to prevent the scream that bubbled dangerously in her throat. Tears dotted the corners of her eyes.
Bellatrix clucked her tongue, "Now, now, deary, you won't need that anymore, at least not where you're going."
Mustering every ounce of physical strength she had left, she threw a punch at the woman's knee. Bellatrix shrieked in surprise before stumbling back and crumbling to the floor. Withher hand free, Hermione swept up her wand and tried to stand. A gloved hand grasped at her ankle and she felt herself falling forward. The duel switched to an all out physical brawl. The two women rolled around the floor scratching at each other's faces. Hermione's gaze shifted frantically to the immobilized duo when one of them groaned. The effects were quickly wearing off. She made to recast the spell only to have a hand encircle her throat in a choke-hold. She gasped.
"You pesky little mudblood bitch." She hissed, her grip tightening as she aimed the pointed end of her wand at Hermione's face.
This time, the curse hit its desired mark and Hermione was incapable of retaining her cries as wave after wave of agonizing pain washed over her. Tears streamed from the corners of her eyes. She could taste the coppery tang of blood in her mouth. Her body hummed and her lungs constricted as she tried to breathe. Then, she felt and heard the sound of cloth and flesh being torn open. Bellatrix must have cast a slicing hex.
Hermione laid broken on the floor in a pathetic heap and began making her peace with God.
Bellatrix ceased her onslaught momentarily to address the new arrival, "Severus, how wonderful of you to join us, I've just about finished up with this one. The mudblood was very persistent." She growled, glaring murderously at the girl strewn across the floor.
Snape took in the sight. He could tell that Granger was barely hanging on, her breathing was labored. Bellatrix was bloodied and disheveled, more so than normal. He silently applauded the young woman; she certainly had managed to do a number on the witch.
"Shall I finish her off, then?" Snape asked in a bored tone, "You look like hell, by the way." He added, grinning.
"Gee, thanks Severus. Bloody greasy git, you are." She muttered patting down her hair self-consciously.
Hermione listened to the exchange impatiently, pleading to be put out of her misery when Snape kneeled down at her side, "Miss Granger, listen to me closely. If you wish to survive, I suggest you get moving. I'll distract them. Head out through the passage, seal the way once you're inside." He whispered.
Hermione tilted her head slowly in a sign that she understood, deciding not to question the man's motives. Lifting herself would be another battle all on its own.
"Severus, what's taking so long? Hurry up and kill the wretch so that we can be off."
Her adrenaline skyrocketed. She was up and flying toward the passageway without even chancing a look back behind her. She dove into the tunnel. The entrance shut firmly behind her and she quickly warded it about ten times over before taking off down the corridor. Tears blinded her vision and she found herself turning corners without even thinking. Thoughts were racing through her mind. Rounding a corner, the ground below her disappeared. She plummeted through the gap with a shriek, legs kicking out in panic and arms outstretched. Her short seventeen years of life flashed before her eyes, her family, her professors, her friends, and her beloved school.
She slammed into solid ground and then, utter darkness...
"Down the Rabbit Hole"- Peter Abrahams, Down the Rabbit Hole, An Echo Falls Mystery
Original Concept: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland- Lewis Carroll
End Note: Incase you missed the pairing. Salazar Slytherin/Hermione Granger. I apologize for any grammatical errors. I wanted to get this out before the last book. I don't need things any more complicated than they already are. This story continues after HBP, Hermione and the gang are in the middle of their 7th year at Hogwarts.
The continuation of this story all depends on you guys. I'll post up one more chapter, but if I see that I'm wasting my time, then I'll take it down. So, let me know what you think, that means, REVIEW. I would really appreciate it, plus I want to hear from fellow Sal/Mione fans.