In the suburbs an hour outside of London, the end of June never disappointed in bringing a warm summer night to life. Soon to be going into her seventh year at Hogwarts, Hermione Granger was lying in her backyard on her favorite comforter gazing at the infinite constellations. Next to her, her father's worn copy of Robert Frost's collected works resided. She had discarded it only thirty minutes prior, when the last light in the sky had vanished. Hermione had spent countless nights in this same routine, a different book with her each time. Sometimes it was classic muggle book, other times a wizarding textbook. She knew these moments would soon come to an end, with her last year at Hogwarts looming and a great wizarding war just starting. She knew she'd have to leave for the Burrow soon, erase her parent's memories until everything was over, and spend her last year at Hogwarts helping Harry hunt down Horcruxes.
"Hermione?" Her mother's voice carried through the house and out the back door. She was about to answer when her father's voice intercepted.
"She's outside dear."
"Again? But she can't be reading its dark."
"She gave that up awhile ago; I think she's fallen asleep." Her father replied, and Hermione could hear the smile in his voice.
"Well let's leave her be, it's a warm night."
Hermione listened to the stairs creak as they retired upstairs. She lay on her side, her brown medium length hair flowed on her back and only complimented the rest of the Earth around her.
She gasped, as she saw a flash of light move across the sky. A shooting star. Hermione knew it was really just a meteor, but for once, she refused to let her brain get in the way of the moment. She closed her eyes, focused on breathing in the summer air. Another flash of light danced behind her eyelids creating a red glow.
A larger light flew across her closed eyes, but this time there was no red glow. This glow was a green, followed by a horrific scream. Hermione threw herself upright, her eyes automatically flying to her parents' bedroom window.
She heard another scream, but this time it was lower. It was her father's.
"No," she whispered, standing and preparing to run inside, grasping her wand from under the blanket.
Before she could move, a large hand was forcibly placed over her mouth, while the other was used to restrain her and pull her over and behind the short fence encircling her backyard.
Victory cries of Death Eaters clouded Hermione's mind. She could hardly think, but knew enough to realize she was being held back from saving her parents. Hermione tried to push her captor away, but the hands wouldn't budge. She still had a firm grim on her wand and tried to do a nonverbal spell, but her grip on it must have alerted him and he wrested it from her. She felt more powerless than before, trying to turn her head to see who was keeping her from saving her family. Was the person trying to kidnap her, kill her, or help her?
Hermione tried to scream but the hand clasped her mouth tighter.
"Where is she? Where is the Granger girl?" Lucius Malfoy's voice floated over to Hermione's location. She stiffened against her captor, fear flooding her body. "Search everywhere! We don't leave until she's dead!"
The grip tightened on Hermione's arms but loosened on her mouth a small bit.
"Let me go! My parents need me!" Her muffled voice managed to be clear enough.
"They're gone Granger." The voice belonged to a boy. It sounded familiar but in an offset tone, as if it was trying to disguise itself from her. The hand was removed from her mouth, but Hermione was still pinned to the floor, hands trapped.
"They're not!" She whispered doubtfully. "They can't be."
"I saw it, okay? They're dead." He let go of her entire body, but before she could move to see his face Death Eaters began exiting the house, searching the backyard for her.
"It's time for you to go." He grasped her hand and Hermione felt the uncomfortable squeezing feeling of apparating.
She refused to open her eyes or speak. She was no longer restrained, but she couldn't move even if she wanted to. Shock coursed through her system. Her parents couldn't be dead. Hermione didn't react as she was released and her body hit the hard grassy ground. She could smell the faint countryside. It was peaceful, crickets could be heard in the distance, and fresh windy night air hit her face. It was too peaceful for just leaving a place so horrid.
"Are you alive?" The voice said, and Hermione felt a body roll her over and check a pulse. She felt her wand drop to her side. He had given it back.
She refused to open her eyes. If she kept them shut, maybe none of this would be real.
"I'm so sorry." The familiar voice spoke again. This was enough to wake Hermione's brain from her trance. Enough to open her eyes, and see two magnificently silver eyes disapparate in the dark.
Her head slumped back to the ground, finally letting her body pass out.
The Hogwarts start of term feast was something that Hermione always marveled at. Ever since the first time she sat down to it six years ago when she was only a child. She had read about it in Hogwarts, A History, but it always surprised and delighted her the same as the first time she saw the food magically appear on her plate. The Great Hall glittered alive tonight, just as it had at every start of term feast. The only difference this year was that Hermione didn't take notice.
Ever since her parent's murders over the summer at the hands of Lucius Malfoy and his Death Eaters, she hadn't been able to take joy in anything. She barely managed to escape thanks to some random silver eyed stranger, who apparated her to the Burrow. All members of the Order were trying furiously to track down the Death Eaters and Voldemort even more so than before. Hermione was completely preoccupied with grief, she spent most of her summer days at the Burrow locked in Ginny's room feeling alone and orphaned.
Her friends tried to talk to her, the Order questioned her, but she only gave the information they wanted to hear.
"Yes, it was the Death Eaters." She'd say.
"No, Ron I'm fine."
"His eyes were silver, like I said."
"Sorry Molly, I'm just not up for dinner tonight."
"Harry, please. I need to be alone."
"JUST GO AWAY GINNY!"
Her friends knew she was going through a hard time, and had finally decided to give her the distance she needed. Apparently that distance was laughing and joking merrily only a foot away while completely ignoring her. She didn't know if this was for her benefit of theirs. Hermione hadn't exactly been the most friendly or happy of people this summer but her parents had just been murdered, which would take anyone awhile to adjust to. This wasn't the only reason they had acted as if she didn't exist lately. Anytime Hermione did want to talk, it was only about the silver eyed boy, and her preoccupation with him was starting to get on their nerves.
Nightmares haunted her every night, replaying the events of the summer in her head, and at the end of each one the silver eyes always shone just enough to wake her up in a panic. Sometimes the eyes were comforting, like someone was watching over her. Other times she just felt like they were watching her, and there was nothing comforting about it. Hermione's obsession with the mystery surrounding her escape plagued her every thought.
She was too preoccupied to even be excited about becoming Head Girl this year, something she had always wanted, but now it was starting to feel like another burden. McGonagall must have felt it was her duty as the new Headmistress to lighten Hermione's spirit. It didn't help. This was something Dumbledore would have understood, but he was long gone, murdered by Snape at the end of last term. At least she and the Head Boy received the privilege of private dorms this quarter. Time away from everyone could give her the focus she needed to hone in on the mystery of the silver eyed savior.
Not feeling very festive or hungry, Hermione decided to retire early to her new dorms. It'd give her a chance to check the place out before the Head Boy arrived. She quietly exited the Great Hall, feeling the eyes of every student watching her go. They must have read the prophet who covered the story of her parent's deaths, and the silver eyed savior all summer long. When she was no longer in view of the students, Hermione pulled out her Head letter and the map accompanying it out of her robe and searched for her portrait.
She found it on the sixth floor, at the end of an unused corridor. She walked the unlit path until she reached the moving portrait of a Lion resting beneath a tree, with a snake coiled around the branches. Hermione looked over her letter and recited the password.
"Marblemento?" She questioned.
The Lion roared and the snake hissed, as the portrait swung back and she stepped into her new home.
A/N: Please review!