Author's Note: This story is neither HBP nor DH compliant. Feedback is always appreciated; reviews feed my muse and make me smile.
As should soon become apparent, I have two OTPs. They both make me happy, and they both feature in this fic. I don't get terribly graphic, but there is both a slash pairing and a het pairing; if this is not your cup of tea, this is not the story for you.
Updates should be every couple of days, as this story is complete, but I have to fix up the formatting so that it posts properly here.
Anti-Litigation Charm: It all belongs to JKR; I play for non-profit amusement.
It All Started when the Girl Fell from the Sky
by Silver Birch
Chapter One: Look Out Below!
Hermione Granger was hurrying towards the Great Hall, brimming book bag slung haphazardly over her shoulder. She had been in the library and had lost track of the time, so she was half-running through the hallway. Having told the boys she wouldn't be late, she wasn't particularly in the mood for the ribbing she would get from them for getting lost in her books yet again, especially as she had told them specifically and rather snappishly today that she knew how to use a clock. But honestly, who cared about food when one could be reading about advanced Transfiguration?
Her forward motion was already quite accelerated, and this proved to be a boon when a small child fell out of the sky. Hermione reacted without thought, casting a cushioning charm and diving flat out, an instinctive reaction of both her comparatively recent magical abilities and her Muggle upbringing. The two bodies ended up in a tangle on the floor, the child's fall broken by the charm and by Hermione herself. There was a moment of confusion as they each scrambled and tried to recover from what had just happened. The child pushed herself up on Hermione's abdomen, so that the slightly-winded Gryffindor found herself regarding from quite close quarters a young girl who appeared to be four or five. She was pale-skinned, pointy-chinned, and possessed fine, white-blonde hair. She looked, Hermione realized, exactly like a miniature Malfoy – with the exception of the huge, emerald eyes. They, without question, were Harry's. Hermione could only stare.
The little girl blinked, dark lashes sweeping her cheek, and then said in accents of surprise, "Aunt 'Mione? Is that you?"
Oh, Lordy. This was getting weirder by the moment.
"Yes, angel, it's me," she managed to answer. "Are you feeling alright?"
"I mostly fell on you, and you're mostly squishy."
"That was the plan," Hermione conceded. "I think there's been a bit of an additional accident, though. Let's say we take a trip to the infirmary, and then we'll talk to the headmaster?"
"Alright," the girl agreed readily.
Hermione managed to climb to her feet, taking the child with her and settling her on her hip. She changed the direction she had been heading, and a few minutes later, they were in the infirmary, attended by Madam Pomfrey. Given the double-take the child received, Hermione was not the only one who saw the surprising resemblance. Hermione and her young charge were led to the far end of the infirmary and put behind a privacy screen.
The child did not want to be left alone with Madam Pomfrey, so Hermione stayed with her. They chatted quietly together while the nurse summoned Dumbledore. Scanning them took only a few minutes, and after the healing of a superficial bruise or two, they were each given a clean bill of health. A few minutes later, the headmaster had joined them. He was wearing an amazingly vibrant purple robe covered with myriad small, golden clocks. As Hermione wondered about the likelihood of coincidences, the little girl's face lit up.
The twinkle in the old man's eyes grew more pronounced.
"You look less old just like Aunt 'Mione – what happened?" she demanded inquisitively.
"It looks as though you've gone back in time, Calla, sweetie," Hermione answered when Dumbledore gave a nod of consent. "I'm still in my seventh year here at Hogwarts."
"Seventh year? You're still a student?" Her face was suddenly wreathed with smiles. "Father and Daddy are still students here, too?"
Well, that answered that question. Hermione nodded and Calla let out a giggle. "That's amazing."
Before they made it any further in their inquiries, they were interrupted by an aggrieved voice sounding loudly through the room.
"I said I was fine! Multiple times! But she insisted I come here."
Calla's face lit up, and before Hermione or Dumbledore had the chance to say anything, she had hopped off the bed and raced around the screen. By the time her two elders had progressed that far, the child was launching herself at Malfoy—who certainly looked completely unharmed to Hermione's critical eye—with a joyful cry of "Father!"
To his credit, Malfoy caught her rather than cursing her.
"I missed you," she exclaimed. "Aunt 'Mione says you're still a student. She caught me when I fell and brought me here and got Granpa Dumbly and now you're here! Is Daddy coming too?"
Looking utterly stunned, Malfoy stared down at the elfin face. Hermione wondered where his Malfoy mask had gone. Since several moments of silence didn't look to be broken by Draco any time soon, Hermione opened her mouth to answer for him in the negative. More voices sounded from the hall.
"The map said she was here – she might be hurt!"
Ron's less charitable response echoed through the room: "More like she's hiding out here in order to convince us she didn't stay too long in the library again."
Pursing her lips in annoyance, Hermione called out, "We can hear you in here."
The messy-haired Boy Who Lived and his tall, red-haired companion appeared in the doorway.
"Hermione?" Harry questioned when he caught sight of the assemblage.
An instant later, the child had squirmed out of Malfoy's arms and was making a beeline for Harry for a repeat performance of her earlier parental greeting. This time, however, she yelled, "Daddy!" and plastered herself to Harry's leg. Harry, like Draco, instinctively hugged her to him before scooping her into his arms.
"Well, aren't you the cutest thing I've ever seen." Harry smiled down at her. "You look just like a miniature Dra–Malfoy, but you have …" he faltered, "…you have my mother's eyes." His eyes rose to take in the rest of the room again as he demanded, "What's going on?"
Squirming out of the Gryffindor's arms, Calla grabbed up Harry's hand and tugged him further into the room towards everyone else.
"Aunt 'Mione says there's been an accident and I've gone back in time," she grinned, "to when
Father and you are still students."
"Father and I," Harry repeated, nonplussed, and then he turned to look at Malfoy. "That's … interesting."
"Interesting?" Malfoy repeated, his voice rising in intensity and pitch with each word. "Interesting? You just discovered you've had a child with me and you say it's interesting?"
"What would you have me say?" Harry asked. "Especially in … present company?"
The little girl looked up at her father with huge, guileless eyes. "Oh, please don't be upset with Daddy, Father. It makes him sad. His face gets all scrunchy." She mimicked this action for their edification.
Malfoy's eyebrow rose and he cast a sardonic glance at Harry before he responded to the little girl. "Oh, if it's a case of his face getting scrunchy, I quite agree with you, my dear. I'll try to behave."
She beamed at him. "That's what you usually say. And then Daddy points out that the 'optimal' word is try."
"Oh?" Draco's voice had darkened considerably.
The girl was nodding vehemently, seemingly oblivious to the sudden increase in tension in the room. "And then he tells you that's why he loves you and there's lots of kisses. And then you tell him that's why you love him and there's lots more kisses." She beamed at the two of them.
Draco's expression had softened considerably, although his cheeks were now tinged with pink, rather matching Harry's.
Hermione smiled at the little girl, realizing that Calla already had both parents wrapped around her little finger.
"Calla, sweetheart, how about you, Ron, and I go down to the kitchens to get something to eat?"
"May I?" She looked at her parents hopefully.
They both nodded at her, so with a last angelic smile, the little girl held out one hand for Hermione and another for Ron. It couldn't have gone better if Hermione had instructed her specifically, as the fiery redhead who had looked about to protest her suggestion bowed to will of the child. They headed out of the infirmary hand-in-hand and Hermione revised her assessment: Calla had them all wrapped around her little finger. As they were crossing the threshold, Hermione heard Dumbledore speaking.
"Poppy, might I have a word with you in your office?"
She smiled. Dumbledore could always be counted on to catch one's drift. There were now only two people left in the infirmary, and as the doors closed behind the kitchen-bound trio, Hermione had a fleeting wish that she possessed Rita Skeeter's Animagus form.
Next up: Conversation in the infirmary.