Title: Unspoken Rules Should Be Broken
Rating: M (This rating is for sexual situations, adult language, and adult themes.)
Pairing: D/Hr, Mentions of D/B/Hr
Disclaimer: The characters contained in this fanfiction are the sole property of J.K. Rowling her publishers, their publishing houses, and the fine studio of Warner Bros. and subsidiaries. I will in no way sell or reproduce this story for profit. In no way will any funds be made from the writing of this work.
Warnings: Character death, angst Not Compatible with DH.
Summary: Blaise, Hermione, and Draco shared a relationship, now Blaise is dead, and Hermione and Draco are confused as to where they stand with one another.
Beta Credits: ShagMeDracoPart One
It always rained at funerals and today had been no exception. Sheets of water slashed against the windows and lightening flashed outside. The storm showed no signs of relenting in any way and the clouds were only growing darker and thicker.
Peeling off the wet dress, soaked from standing many minutes before an open grave, Hermione Granger looked around the room for what she knew to be the last time. Everything was packed and neatly shrunken to fit in her trunk, the very same trunk she had always carried to and from Hogwarts every year.
Casting a quick drying charm on the black dress and black robes, already lying across the bed, Hermione hurriedly stepped into a pair of simple denims and a pale blue jumper. Not caring if she wore any casual robes or not, she shrunk the now clean and dry dress and black robes, putting both into the trunk before she closed it with a quiet click. Sighing softly, she nodded to herself as though she had to reaffirm her decision.
It wasn't like there was any other way to go about things now. There had been a set of unspoken rules, and now that the status quo had changed it was time to move on. There was nothing to keep her here and though it wasn't easy to admit, Hermione had to be strong and not falter now. Any weakness would be too embarrassing to show. It was best to leave quickly, quietly, and then go mourn her lost love in peace.
Blaise's death wasn't a surprise, but preparing for it over the course of the last month hadn't made it any easier. It only proved that though the war was over, the echoes of the conflict resonated into their daily lives. Four years of time that had passed seemed inconsequential when the effects could still be felt.
Hermione blamed herself really. The very reason Blaise had died was due to a curse intended for her during the final battle. That in itself was enough to make her feel at fault. However, there was also the fact that there had been no initial warning as to how bad the spell had affected him at first. She was the smart one, the observant one. She should have seen this coming and should have noticed it sooner, but she hadn't.
Instead, Hermione had celebrated the end of the war, the fact a good handful of her friends had survived, Harry Potter included, and that she was free to pursue the one wizard who had ever completely loved her without reservation. That was the night she and Blaise had quit hiding their relationship, had quit sneaking off for bittersweet moments, and had quit lying to those around them about their feelings for one another.
There hadn't been much surprise, for the most part, and there had been no major disagreements following the announcement. It hadn't been until the next morning that Blaise's housemate, and longtime friend, Draco, voiced his opinion. It had not been favorable.
Hermione knew that Blaise had maintained a sexual relationship with the fellow Slytherin during their later years of school and at the onset of the war. However, they had amicably, or so Blaise had told her, gone their separate ways when joining the Order three years prior. Apparently, that wasn't the case.
Angry, hurt, and resentful that Blaise had found another love, Draco ranted for quite awhile on all of the reasons why Blaise and Hermione would never thrive as a couple. To this, Blaise calmly replied that he loved Hermione and that was a fact that would not change. He added that he loved Draco as well, but ultimately Draco's past choices had lead them down different paths and Draco's insistence on remaining aloof and unable to acknowledge his feelings forced him to find something more permanent and emotionally fulfilling.
The fight went back and forth for quite a while, Hermione wondering if Draco might convince Blaise of her shortcomings and come out the victor in the end. Blaise refused to leave her or mock her in any way and told Draco that he had a choice. He could prove himself to them both, that he was willing to try and work past his prejudices and learn to share more of himself with others, or he could walk away now and never look back.
Hermione had understood Blaise's meaning even if Draco hadn't at first. He was willing to take him back, but only if he could accept her as well. This had forced Hermione to revaluate her beliefs and own opinions. Was she the type of woman who could share the man she loved? Was she even the type of woman who could find it comfortable to maintain such an unorthodox relationship? Two men and one woman together wasn't typical and logical, practical Hermione wondered if she could look past her own ideals.
Loving Blaise had made her think that she could do anything, that anything was possible though. After some soul searching, and a very bitter row that nearly ended their relationship, Hermione realized that she loved Blaise enough to let him have them both. Draco had been important to him once, obviously still was, and the thought of Blaise happy was all that mattered to Hermione.
It was awkward, beyond hopeless at times, but within the year the three had come to an understanding. Hermione would have been lying if she hadn't admitted there was a certain spark between the two wizards that was arousing and comforting to her all at once. Also, when Draco had stopped scowling at her and sneering at every word she said, she found his traits, both physical and emotional, appealing as well.
Draco was still a spoiled, selfish prat, but there was a small amount of softness to him now. The word Mudblood hadn't passed his lips since joining the Order, but now even the malice was gone from his eyes when Hermione was present. He wasn't as difficult at lending his help as he had been in the beginning, and he was more likely than not to pass up the opportunity to engage in a war of words with Harry or Ron.
Yes, Hermione decided, loving Blaise and having developed a healthy bit of lust for Draco would be enough to sustain the relationship. After all, Blaise was the common denominator in their equation and both Draco and Hermione had come to the agreement early on that they wanted him happy. Blaise could hold them together. It would work.
The common ground that Hermione and Draco shared hadn't been enough, however, to make the first time all three were intimate any less uncomfortable. Draco was fighting his jealousy and Hermione was feeling more than inadequate. Their first time together had not been perfect, but Blaise hadn't seemed to mind. Having clearly enjoyed himself, Blaise smiled with contentment, whispered that they both had made him extremely happy and pulling Hermione between both himself and Draco, promptly fell to sleep.
Hermione was certain neither she nor Draco had slept that night, both trying to keep from touching the other, both trying to keep that fact from Blaise. That particular game continued many nights after that first one until Hermione, afraid Blaise would begin to notice the distance that still remained between his lovers, decided to rely on her Gryffindor courage. When Blaise placed her before him, an arm snaking around her waist to pull her back against his chest, Hermione had impulsively reached to take Draco's hand and draw it close to her chest.
The instant she touched him, she felt Draco stiffen and wondered if she had misjudged her moment to make her move. Then he significantly relaxed, surprising Hermione by moving closer so that even though they did not touch, she could feel the heat radiating from his body. It was as accepting as she would be able to make him at that point, and it was more than enough for her.
Slowly, but surely, they found a better way to coexist. Having learned to keep their tempers in check when Blaise was within hearing distance and to appear friendly when Blaise was near. It wasn't terribly difficult to incorporate a touch here or a kind word there. This tactic wasn't lost on Blaise however, who approached them one night, calling their bluff as it were.
He knew, he had to have known, but Blaise wasn't above playing the innocent to get his way. He also knew that both Hermione and Draco were eager to cater to his whims. This request required them to put aside all indifference. Blaise wanted to watch them, together, without his interference. It was a fantasy that he had waited patiently to enjoy. Also, Hermione suspected Blaise was forcing their hand to see if they would balk at the prospect of anything sexual involving only one another.
Not willing to disappoint Blaise in any way, Hermione accepted the challenge, surprised when Draco said nothing in argument. She was grateful that he would cooperate and not make a fuss, but at the same time, Hermione worried about his motives. Blaise was open and honest, even though he liked to remain quiet and said little. Draco, on the other hand, was vocal and quick to voice his pleasure or displeasure. That in itself had Hermione's senses screaming caution when he did nothing but silently comply.
Hermione was not so much a fool as to think she was anything other than average when it came to her skills in the bedroom. She excelled at many things, but there was a certain amount of self-confidence that was required when mastering the finer arts of maintaining the sexual part of a relationship. With said reservations already plaguing her where Blaise was concerned, the prospect of being faced with Draco on such a level was more frightening than an entire horde of Death Eaters.
Instinct played a major factor in the encounter, Hermione never taking her eyes off Blaise as though he were a safety net. At first she had attempted to pretend it was Blaise who was her solitary lover, but that hadn't been easy to accomplish. As she had admitted to herself before, it was simple to lust after Draco, especially if it was condoned and encouraged by Blaise himself. Therefore, she allowed herself to enjoy the time with Draco, but refused to let herself forget that he too only complied with Blaise's wishes.
There was such contentment and joy as Blaise watched them, his dark eyes sparkling with love and desire as they moved together. That in itself seemed to urge them both to make the most of the experience. They each wanted to heighten the moment for Blaise. They hadn't disappointed him. In fact it was that night that he asked Hermione to marry him and Draco to remain with them as well.
Hermione had accepted Blaise's marriage proposal and they moved into a two bedroom flat, Draco accepting the situation for what it was. Afterward the awkwardness seemed to wane, but Hermione was always certain to remember that Draco only tolerated her for Blaise. If she were to have left the following day, Draco wouldn't have attempted to stop her. More than likely he would have let her have his favorite house elf, Tinkerton, to help her pack and be on her way.
That was the reason Hermione presently had decided to leave with as much grace as was possible. Draco could keep the flat. He had no place else to go and she had Harry and Ginny's until she could find a place of her own. The manor had been lost in the war and both his parents as well as her own. She didn't have the heart to ask him to leave and he didn't appear to be of a mind to either. It was only fair, and that would let him keep his last memories of Blaise. Remaining in the home they had shared would be a parting gift Hermione thought.
Sighing again, reluctant to leave but unable to stay, Hermione smoothed down the duvet on the bed before walking to the door. The room had barely been slept in, all three using the room next to this one, but it was the room she had occupied since returning from St. Mungo's following Blaise's death. Draco hadn't minded obviously, barricading himself inside their once shared room and only appearing to eat and for the funeral that morning.
They hadn't spoken since saying their goodbyes to Blaise, but Hermione knew Draco was aware of her decision. Leaving would suit them both. At least it would have if she hadn't allowed herself to care for him beyond the lust and what she thought Blaise expected of her.
Hermione was not a casual woman and to simply make love to and with both men inevitably led to feelings of more than lust. She had already loved Blaise more than she thought possible, but that love had eventually, and without her knowledge, grown to include Draco as well. This discovery she had made when she spied Draco in the hall at St. Mungo's after Blaise's diagnosis a month prior. Angrily wiping tears from his grey eyes that never fell and pacing with impotent rage, Hermione had felt the overwhelming urge to go to him and share in the grief.
That was part of the unspoken law between them however; nothing beyond what they shared with Blaise was necessary. Blaise was all Hermione or Draco needed and as long as they kept him happy, it was easy to ignore one another on any level but the physical. There wasn't any room for her where Draco was concerned, Hermione was sure, and again she was reminded she was merely tolerated for selfish purposes. With a heavy heart, she had turned and walked away, never seeing Draco glance up at her, a strange emotion clouding his eyes and marring his usually impassive, pale features.
There wasn't anything to do but keep silent about her feelings or face Draco's ridicule for her weakness. He didn't reciprocate, and there had been enough loss for Hermione. Losing Blaise had nearly destroyed her, giving up Draco before he dashed her dreams and shattered what was left of her broken heart would finish her completely.
Stepping out into the sitting room, Hermione saw a small picture placed on the end table at the side of the lounge. Stopping briefly she touched the frame lovingly, watching Blaise smile back and then wink mischievously. A large lump lodged in her throat and Hermione had to turn away. She could leave this picture behind but it would be hard. She had many of her own stuffed away in the trunk and it would be unfair to take away any of Draco's own memories.
With one last perusal of the flat, Hermione started toward the door. There was no way she was in any condition to Floo or Apparate and she intended to take a cab to the other side of London. From there she planned to meet up with Ginny and Harry.
"Not even going to say goodbye?"
Hermione froze but didn't turn around, surprised that Draco had even emerged from his room to see her off. It would be too hard for her to look at him so she focused on the slickly painted door. "I didn't want to bother you, and frankly goodbye seems rather trite doesn't it? Besides, it isn't as if we have anything to say to each other. Blaise is gone, he's not coming back, and no amount of words or ranting will change that."
There was silence that followed her words, and that was her indication to walk out the door. Turning the knob, she heard a muttered curse and the door to the bedroom slam shut. The violence with which he closed the door shook the pictures on the walls and sent the one on the end table falling to the ground. Still not able to look back, Hermione stepped into the hall and began her walk towards the lift her bag over her shoulder with her shrunken trunk inside.
She was gone and without a single word as to why. But, he knew why, and Draco could be mature enough to admit to himself that he simply didn't want to acknowledge the reason out loud. She had loved Blaise and Blaise alone. She had merely tolerated him for Blaise's sake, and now that Blaise was gone there was nothing left for her to do but move on.
That didn't make her decision to do so any less painful or easier to deal with. He hated her for leaving, for simply walking away without a backward glance. Three years! That was how long it had been since he had gained Blaise's trust and been allowed to join him and Hermione. Had she not felt anything in that time?
Apparently not or she wouldn't have left. There was the unspoken agreement between them. They were never to worry Blaise or make him question their commitment to him or their strange, but satisfying, relationship. That was why she hadn't thought any words were necessary now. Even after sharing a bed, a lover, and numerous other experiences, it still came down to it that she had only accepted him because Blaise had wished it.
Hermione Granger-Zabini was a bloody bitch, and Draco had every intention of telling her so, until he'd heard how hollow and broken her voice had sounded as she left. They were both still grieving, Hermione probably even more since he knew Blaise had been her first in nearly everything imaginable. There was plenty of time to make her miserable for leaving him, Draco decided, but today simply wasn't the day to do it.
Instead, Draco went over in his mind all of the times he could have sworn Hermione was starting to forget her obligation to Blaise and actually see him as something more. He knew that she had found him attractive, desirable. That much was plainly obvious whenever Blaise had asked them to fuck for him. Not a strange request per se, but strange for Blaise. Hermione never seemed to question Blaise's tendencies, but Draco knew that sitting by and letting them play without him wasn't something Blaise truly enjoyed.
When Blaise had finally convinced Draco and Snape to come out of hiding after the Dumbledore and Hogwarts debacle, Draco had learned of Blaise's attraction to Hermione. Still continuing to shag at every opportunity themselves, Blaise had made it apparent that he intended to have the female counterpart of "The Golden Trio."
At first Draco had assumed it was a phase, a whim, but learned over the weeks that Blaise was most serious. He began to pursue her relentless, but stealthily, so that even Potter and Weasley were unable to decipher his true intent. It was after Blaise admitted to cornering the Gryffindor and forcing her to admit her own attraction that Draco realized how truly determined Blaise was.
That, among other things, led to their row that ended what little relationship they had salvaged after the attack on Hogwarts. Blaise couldn't tolerate Draco's misguided ideals and selfish ways, and he refused to subject Hermione to Draco's viper's tongue. Blaise informed Draco that he couldn't continue anything resembling a connection to someone intent on hiding his feelings and using anger as a shield when there was a beautiful, caring witch more than willing and eager to love him and fight for him.
Draco had offered to curb his more prejudiced tendencies, not completely unaware that sharing Hermione wasn't totally offensive. Whether he would admit it to Blaise or not, Hermione was stunning in her own way. Her hair would never really be tamed and her opinions were always blunt, if not hurtful at times, but there was a softness about her as well. Her brown eyes could see through you, almost read your soul, and her full pink lips could offer a gentle smile when it was needed.
Blaise refused the offer, telling Draco he knew that he wasn't ready to have any lasting bonds with anyone and that maybe someday they could work things out. Not one for begging, Draco only could remember snarling that Blaise deserved a Mudblood whore and Hermione was the perfect one to serve him, a Blood Traitor.
That was the last time they had spoken privately, only responding when spoken to during missions or briefings afterward. However, despite his anger at Blaise, and his disappointment that neither Blaise nor Hermione saw him as worthy enough to share themselves with, Draco never revealed their secret. There was a certain amount of loyalty Draco had still felt toward Blaise, and he fully intended to someday join them, no matter how much convincing they required.
When the war was over, Blaise recovered from what they thought then was a minor curse, and he and Hermione had announced their relationship to the Order. Draco had chosen then to make his move. In true fashion, he hadn't made the best of approaches, immediately starting a fight rather than calmly congratulating them. He was jealous of their love, that Hermione had Blaise, and that Blaise had Hermione. Draco was virtually alone in the world and they were the perfect compliment to one another. Their happiness had immediately set his nerves on edge as it also drew him to them, wanting to join them, wanting to see the love that shined in their eyes for one another shine for him as well.
When Blaise had looked past his spoiled tantrum and still offered him a chance to prove himself, Draco was more than surprised. He was more determined however to get what he wanted. If that meant forcing himself to keep certain comments to himself, and putting aside hurt feelings, so be it. There was more at stake than his pride, and it wasn't as though pride had taken him very far in the past. Pride after all was the very reason his parents had supported Voldemort and were now dead as a result.
Draco wasn't going to delude himself that Hermione was going to easily accept Blaise's proposition. Yet, it wasn't long before the three of them were on their way to building a life together. It was uncomfortable in the beginning, but Draco was only thankful to have found a place to stay, a place where he could belong.
The main struggle came in remaining aloof from Hermione and appeasing Blaise all at once. If Hermione truly didn't want him, but ignored her dislike for Blaise, Draco wasn't about to admit that he had been slowly beginning to feel anything other than passing lust for her. Honestly, since joining the ranks of the Order she had began to appeal to him, and now that she was near and at hand, he resigned himself to be content with the minimal contact.
Blaise, however, pushed the envelope, and Draco could never remember feeling so ill at ease in life as when he and Hermione performed for their lover. She hadn't looked at him once, not even when he touched her as he had seen Blaise do numerous times. She had watched their dark lover, eyes transfixed on his form, probably trying to ignore who actually held her, who was sinking deeper into her body.
Yet, after that first encounter, Hermione became more of a mystery to him. She began to genuinely go out of her way to offer kind words, or a smile. In fact after a few more nights of attempting to please Blaise while he watched them from the far side of the room, she had quit focusing on Blaise and had given her attention to Draco.
The first time she had looked him in the eyes as he thrust inside her had been the moment he knew that she had become as important to him as Blaise. He loved her, despite her blood, her temper, and her choice of friends. However, he also recognized that she belonged to Blaise, and though he had consented to share her and Hermione was now eagerly sharing herself, it was, and always would be, Blaise who mattered and no one else.
Bitter at times, and melancholy at others, Draco refused to admit to such feelings when he was certain Hermione would only scoff at him. She would sweetly, but in that maddening, condescending way of hers, tell him how they weren't meant to have feelings for one another and then chastise him for overstepping the unseen boundaries. Again, he told himself that it was better to keep such thoughts from being known and focused on proving daily that he was indeed in love with Blaise and worthy of his affections.
Somehow, though, he had expected Hermione to admit to something other than casual lust after Blaise's diagnosis. For Merlin's sake, she had vocally defended both him and Blaise to Weasley on numerous occasions. She had even banned said Weasley from the wedding ceremony and the commitment ceremony afterward. The wizarding world wasn't ready for polygamy, so the three of them had held another rite, which Draco was exceedingly glad Weasley had been absent from. It hadn't bound them together magically, but it was more or less something that symbolized their dedication to each other.
No change in Hermione's outward temperament came however. In fact, she threw herself into research, determined to find a cure. She was all about Blaise and saving him. There was no time to prepare for the inevitable or to seek and offer comfort. Draco had been sure she would have been forced to admit to a certain weakness, at the very least admit she had become used to him and reach out.
Hermione had done nothing but guard herself further, and so today when she walked away, no words of farewell or intent, he hadn't been surprised. Draco had figured she would try to leave, to run away from the place she had shared with Blaise and attempt to heal. He just hadn't been prepared for how painful her departure would be.
She had slept in the other unused bedroom since Blaise's death, and that too forced Draco to realize that there was never anything truly between the two of them and never would be. That first night he had been tempted to slip into the bed beside her while she slept. Somehow it was always easier at night to make strange confessions, and if he hadn't remembered how distant she had been upon returning home, he would have done anything to force her hand.
Raising weary eyes and running a hand through his white blond hair, Draco decided a long hot shower would be the way to start the evening. It would be the first of many that he would spend alone and he wanted to be relaxed and calm. He doubted he would sleep much, and there was the business of finding another flat mate. He didn't need the help financially, but he did need the companionship. Damn Granger anyhow. Leaving without saying goodbye, not loving him despite their intimate past, that was enough to make him hate her, but he'd have to stop wishing she would come back to him first.
Outside, fighting through the rain and wind, a small, but determined, owl landed precariously on the window ledge. Unable to rouse anyone after repeated attempts at pecking through the glass, the tenacious creature worked the post off its leg and slipped it through the small crack at the bottom of the sill. Peering inside to see that the post had landed safely, the snowy owl flapped its white wings and then took off again, rain soon making it invisible to the naked eye as it drifted farther away.