Hello All,

First and foremost please accept my apologies for not updating this fan fiction for over a year and a half. Life and stuff took over, i.e University but all that is done with now. We had a whirlwind year which even including camping in Trafalgar Square, London for the Deathly Hallows Part 2 and seeing Dan,Emma,Rupert Jo and many of the other Potter Cast. Thanks very much for the reviews this fanfic has received in my absence. I look forward to getting this project started again. Many thanks, dramaticsheep.

Broken - Chapter 6

Many weeks had passed since the event,every night he had sat at her bedside, sleep seemed like no issue to him. When Harry had come up with the idea to break into Gringotts, Ron thought he was mad, nobody broke into Gringotts and lived to tell the tale, and with the heightened security they were bound to stand no chance of succeeding whatsoever, or so he thought. Although the heist had turned out on the whole to be a success, they had come very close to being caught, thanks to that fowl goblin, Griphook. Somehow luck had been on their side, managing to gain control of a captive dragon they had fled the scene, taking to the dull grey skies of England during their escape.

The moment they had apparated to Hogsmeade, an alarm had been sounded, sounding almost like a strangled cat it had rung through the open air, echoing as it went, they had been hidden beneath the cloak, which nowadays concealed their heads and torso's but was no longer lengthy enough to conceal them properly. Were it not for Aberforth Dumbledore ushering them into his pub, Ron was certain that they would have been caught.

Being back in the Room of Requirement at Hogwarts was nice, even though Ron had a stable home unlike Harry had, Hogwarts still felt like home to him. The room was magnificent, transformed to meet the seekers needs, many canvas hammocks hung from the walls, and their occupants were now crowded around him, and Hermione. Harry had left the room with Luna to sneak up to the Ravenclaw common room. It seemed as though their re-appearance had lifted a dark cloud which had lay heavy upon the other students. Instead of fear and silence, Ron was seeing laughter and joking, light hearted humour was nice to see after the months of drama which he, Hermione and Harry had met along the road.

He smiled and turned to Hermione, who returned his smile with a frown.

'What's wrong?' He asked.

'We're at a loss.' She said. 'Even if Harry finds the next Horcrux, how are we going to destroy it? We lost the sword, we haven't even destroyed this one yet.' She confessed, twirling Hufflepuff's cup around in her hands.

'Yeah, you're right...' Ron said, his voice trailing off. He squinted his eyes as he remembered, back to the night just before they had left the Burrow, meeting secretly in his bedroom, the night that Harry had been an insensitive git when Hermione had told him about what lengths she had been to to protect her family. He remembered that she had done research about Horcruxes, adamant that she had not stolen the books from Dumbledore's office, he remembered the ways she had stated that a Horcrux could be destroyed, fiendfyre, although she had said that this method would be too risky, that once they had conjured it, it would be next to impossible to stop it. He paused, stumped, what was the other one? He strained. Why did the sword of Gryffindor kill horcruxes? What was so special about it? Ron gasped as it finally came to him. Basilisk venom, that was what would kill the Horcrux, the sword was lined with it, and what was decaying down in the Chamber of secrets other than the skeleton of a Basilisk?

'What is it?' She asked.

'We need to go and get a Basilisk fang.' Ron spluttered. 'Down from the Chamber of secrets, remember? you said that Basilisk venom could kill horcruxes, and the sword-'

'Was lined with Basilisk venom!,' She almost shouted. 'Ron that's brillint! let's go right now!' She grabbed his hand and started dragging him towards the door to leave the room.

'Where are you going?' Ginny asked from the crowd, spotting them leaving.

'We'll be back, Ginny, if Harry comes back, tell him we've gone to look for something, we'll be back as soon as we can.' He stated in a hurry, as Hermione dragged him through the door and closed it behind them.

The stumbled out into a dimly lit corridor, it was night time, after all.

'Which floor do you suppose we're on?' Ron whispered.

'Fourth.' Hermione said quietly. 'Come on, we've got to get down two floors, and we must not be seen.'

Keeping as close to her as possible he followed her as the ran through the corridors, trying to get through as fast as possible but also as discretely as possible. The castle was eerily quiet, it was the early hours of the morning though. Ron was terrified they would be discovered, by Snape, the Carrows, or death eaters. They reached the staircase and made their way down the stairs as fast as possible, so much so that Ron almost fell when they reached the third floor. He once again pursued Hermione until she gasped and pulled him behind a stone pillar out of sight.

'What are you doing?' Ron whispered. Hermione pointed to the hallway.

'Peeves...' She mouthed. Although Peeves was a poltergeist and generally wouldn't really hurt anyone, he was well known for causing havoc and creating a scene, if he discovered that Ron and Hermione were in the hallway, he would most likely sound the alarm, alerting Filch no doubt, and it would all be over.

Hermione silently withdrew Bellatrixes wand from her cloak, pointed it at a suit of armour positioned just around the corner from where they stood and whispered quietly.

'Diffindo.' The suit of armour, hit by the spell clattered to the foor, pieces of armour scattering everywhere noisily which was bound to grab Peeve's attention, and sure enough the small poltergeist flew immediately down the opposite corridor to inspect what had happened.

'Go.' Hermione said, and together they ran as fast they could down the corridor and down the next staircase, almost diving into the girls bathroom on the second floor of the school, Hermione hastily closed and locked the wooden door behind them.

They paused for several moments, allowing themselves to catch their breath. Hermione lit her wand, as the bathroom was very dark this late at night. It was the same as it always was, slightly flooded due to Myrtle's tantrums, the hexagonal sink block stood magnificent as ever, but unfortunately the passageway to the chamber was closed.

'Oh no, what are we going to do?' She exclaimed. 'The passageway is closed and Harry isn't here, how are we to open it?' She said, shaking her head' she looked to Ron, who had his eyes closed.

'Ron?' She asked. Ron opened his mouth wide, and hissed, the phrase was long and drawn-out, Hermione didn't understand what he was saying. Ron stopped speaking and all was quiet, Ron opened his eyes and looked upon the sink unit with hope in his eyes. Seconds later each individual sink unit moved outwards, revealing a hexagonal hole in which to slide down into the chamber. Hermione looked shocked.

'How did you do that?' She asked him.

'Harry had to ask the locket to open before I could destroy it with the sword, I kind of remembered how to say it, I thought it may come in handy, and it did. he said.

'Brilliant!' She exclaimed, and hand in hand they jumped together down the chute. As they reached the bottom, dust flew wildly into the air, as the area had lay undisturbed for years. Ron helped Hermione up and she wiped the dust from her robes and took in her surroundings, the dark cave like structure, with boulders and rocks and stones lining the floor.

'There is where Lockhart's obliviate backfired, it caused a cave in.' Ron explained, he began to lead her through the cave, being careful not to trip on the scattered rocks, when they reached the entrance to the chamber, it lay wide open, presumably from when Harry had opened it himself five years ago. One after the other they climbed down the ladder into the chamber itself. Ron took in his surroundings, amazed. After all he had never seen the actual chamber, he had been stuck with Lockhart. The chamber was fascinating, a long walkway cut down the centre of the chamber with giant serpent heads adorning the sides. At the very end of the chamber was a giant statue of Salazar Slytherin, and below it lay the decayed carcass of the Basilisk. It was huge, much bigger than he had ever imagined. Behind the carcass of the snake lay a pool of water, so still and undisturbed. He walked up to the snake carcass, examining the skull, locating the fangs, he reached up and grabbed one, being careful not to pierce his skin, he pulled the fang away from the skull in one swift motion, and the fang came free. He held it closer to his face, examining it. It was sharp and yellowing, his heart was racing. This was their only hope, this was the difference between winning and losing. He turned to Hermione, she had the cup in her hands, she made to hand it to him, but he shook is head.

'You should do it.' He said.

'I can't!' She said, shaking her head.

'Yes you can,' He said. 'I think it's supposed to be you, just like the locket was mine. Don't worry, I'll be right here, I won't let anything happen to you.'

Hermione gulped and placed the cup on the floor of the chamber, she was trembling, she took the fang from Ron and took a deep breath. She lifted the fang high into the air, ready to strike.

The silence was broken as the small golden cup began to tremble on the stone floor. Before she could reach down the pierce the cup with the fang, the air around her became cold, she could see her breath in the air in front of her. A dark grey mist began to seep from the cup, overflowing from the edges and spreading around the cup, rising fast into a large cloud. Hermione was frozen on the spot, the fang held tight in her right hand. Two figures emerged from the cloud, silent and unmoving, they appeared to be lay on the floor, hand in hand. Hermione gasped, her parents lay dead upon the floor. Everything she had done, the lengths she had gone to protect them had been all for nought. Suddenly, the dead husband and wife got up from the floor, undead they stared at their daughter.

'This is your fault.' He father said, his eyes were coal black. 'You left us alone to die, you abandoned your family.' Hermione's bottom lip trembled.

'I'm sorry...' She cried. Her mother laughed.

'Sorry? You are not sorry, you never cared about us, you don't love us.' She sneered.

'Hermione, don't listen to it, it's lying to you!' Ron shouted from beside her, but she did not hear him.

Suddenly, her father disappeared, and her mother changed, she grew taller, her hair became dark with wild curls. This new woman smiled widely at Hermione, and cackled like a crazy woman.

'Worthless little mudblood, scum of the earth. I bet you wish I'd killed you when I had the chance.' Bellatrix taunted Hermione smiling even wider. Suddenly the scar on her right arm began to burn violently, she looked down towards her arm, the word that hard been cruelly carved into her arm by Bellatrix oozed red, the scar was cut open fresh, almost deeper than the first time. Hermione screamed as blood began to drip from her arm, splattering on the stone floor around her. Bellatrix cackled. It had awoken a rage within Hermione, a rage which she did not know she could possess, she ran forward, her arm stretched high and with all her force she stabbed the cup with the fang. Bellatrix disappeared with a scream, the cup turned black and shrivelled.

Before they could stop to take it in, there was a deep rumbling which echoed around the chamber, Ron looked at Hermione, terrified. A huge wall of water rose from the pool which lay beyond the snakes carcass, as it rose higher it began to travel towards them, they turned and ran, but the water caught them before they got even two feet away. Ron held his breath as he slipped beneath the water, it was ice cold, its sheer force was enough to throw him around, bashing him into walls. He looked around wildly for Hermione. Amongst the floating snake bones he could not see her. Where was she? She had been right behind him. He swerved quickly out of the way of a giant snake bone and he saw her, floating unconsciously near the chamber floor. He swam down as fast as he could and grabbed her, he placed her arm over his shoulder and swam up with the rising water, he swam through the cave and up the chute which they had slid down on the way in. When he came up above the water he gasped as the air rushed into his lungs, he couldn't get enough of it. They were back in the girls bathroom, Ron rolled hermione onto the bathroom floor, out of the way of the sink units. Once out of the way the sink unit automatically moved back into a closed position, sealing the water below and preventing it from flooding the bathroom.

He was shivering, both of them were soaked to the skin. He scrambled over to her unconscious body, and shook her slightly. He could only assume that she had hit her head on one of the chamber walls as the water had pushed them around.

'Hermione, come on love, wake up.' He said, shaking her. She began to cough violently, water spilling from her mouth, she must have swallowed a lot of it. She was gasping for breath, grasping at Ron's wet jumper.

'Ron.' She said, out of breath.

'It's okay, I'm here, you did it.' He said, he held a basilisk fang in his hand to show her. She sat up, relieved, she looked into his eyes, amazed that they had survived all of this, instinct took over her body, and she threw herself forward, wrapping her arms around Ron's body, she kissed him deeply, kissed him as though he had been away and she hadn't seen him in years, She was pleasantly surprised when Ron kissed her back too, he picked her up, and held her close, not wanting this moment to end. He put her down and she withdrew, smiling at him, he smiled back at her. He noticed the blood which now stained her right sleeve.

'Oh.' he said, taking her right arm and pulling the sleeve back, the wound was still bleeding, but not as badly as before. 'Come on,' He said, 'Let's fix you up.' He took her hand in his and led her out of the bathroom. Although in a weary daze, Hermione couldn't stop smiling, he was hers.