With Darkness There'll Be Light
Nineteen- Pure of Heart
"So you're going to kill us," Draco stated blandly, "Why?"
"You are the only two people in the entire magical world that have the power, if combined, to stop me. Therefore, if I dispose of you both, there will be no one else in my way."
"What about Dumbledore?" Harry asked, his green eyes narrowing as he watched his best friend who was not really his best friend.
Hermione shrugged slowly, "Dumbledore is old. Though he has power, he doesn't have the strength he'd need in order to beat a wizard such as myself."
"AH HA!" Draco hollered, standing up; Harry jumped a mile but Hermione merely turned her eyes to look at him. "You're a wizard, then!"
"Emmm, Draco," Harry whispered, "There's no way it could be a Muggle."
Draco sighed and rolled his eyes, "Obviously I mean she's not a witch. Or rather, he is not a witch. This whole entire situation is dreadfully confusing. Where IS Hermione when you need her."
"Her body is right there," Harry said, "But I don't think that's what you mean."
"No," Draco laughed, "I need her mind."
Hermione stood up from the chair and leaned over the two of them after pushing Draco into his own chair, "All right. We've stalled enough." She pulled a wand slowly from her pocket.
"Voldemort," Harry stated decisively.
Hermione's eyes slowly fell onto his own; when she spoke, it was not her voice, but the voice of a man who sounded more like a snake, "Yes?"
"How did you know?" Draco asked, ignoring the fact that he was about to be killed.
"Elementary, my dear Draco." Harry grinned. "So anyway, Voldemort." He folded his arms across the top of the cold table, "Since you're going to kill us, couldn't you at least tell us how Hermione could get her body back?"
"Surely," Voldemort answered, "I like a good pre-killing explanation as much as the next villain."
Draco's lips curled into an evil looking smile, and his voice sounded like a child's, "Goodie! A story!" He stopped smiling, "Why prolong the wait?"
"I'm curious," Harry explained, turning back to Voldemort, "Go on."
Voldemort shrugged and sat back down, "Well, the Mudblood was the strongest person of magic in the vicinity who wasn't our dear Potter himself…before you comment, Draco, I'll have you know that when you were hit with Avada you were weakened so don't take it to heart that I didn't choose you."
"No offense taken, of course," Draco replied good naturedly.
"And of course your arm was broken," Voldemort continued, "I suppose you'll want to know about the Dark Mark on the Mudblood's precious skin." He didn't wait for Harry or Draco to say anything, "Well, being that I am quite evil and all that, and she is not, having something so dreadfully evil enter her system was enough to scorch the mark there. It's not permanent unless I saturate myself in her completely. Which I haven't, so don't get all heroic and tell me to watch what I'm doing in here."
"I wouldn't dream of it," Draco assured the Dark Lord, "Would you, Harry?" Harry, probably in some sort of shock, just nodded.
"Now then, for your dear Miss Granger to gain possession back of her body, there would have to be something called a Amorcism which is much like an Exorcism, I'm sure you're read about them, though it doesn't involve a priest, but someone who loves her pure of heart. It reminds me of those horrid fairy tales. Where the evil witch has put a spell on the beautiful girl and she's in a deep sleep until the prince kisses her and they live happily ever after." As he finished this statement his voice became very bland and annoyed.
Draco looked dubious, "So let me get this straight. If someone loved Hermione with all they had and they were to kiss her, she'd be okay and you'd be gone?"
"To put it vulgarly, yes," Voldemort answered, admiring his fingernails.
Draco glanced so quickly at Harry that no one but Harry himself noticed the tiny flicker in the other wizard's gray eyes.
Voldemort looked remarkably bored and it was odd for Harry because he had never seen such an expression on Hermione's face before, "As there isn't anyone who loves her with all their heart and a pure soul, I'll just move on, shall I?"
"I love her," Harry said with a raised eyebrow.
"I'm sure you do, dear boy," He made a sour face, "But not in the way a man loves a woman. You love her like she's your sister. I can see it in your eyes."
"I didn't know you knew so much about relationships, Dr. Ruth," Harry retorted.
Draco, while Harry was bickering and causing a bit of a distraction, was slowly and carefully making his way to the other side of the table.
Voldemort's eyes flickered with anger, "I'm bored now and I would like to kill you." He tapped his wand on the table and stood up, pointing it directly at Harry.
Harry squared his shoulders and prepared himself for the worst that could happen.
"I don't really feel like being dead today," Draco said from behind Voldemort, making the Dark Lord spin on his feet and face him. "Wanna know why?"
"Sure," Voldemort replied blankly.
"I'm in love with Hermione, I have been for a very long time." He took a step towards Voldemort, muttering under his breath, "It's Hermione, it's Hermione, it's Hermione," over and over.
Taking the deepest breath he had ever taken in his life and grabbing Hermione/Voldemort by the shoulders, he pressed his lips to hers in a fiery kiss that would have made his heart flutter if he could get the feeling of dread out of his mind. He had wanted to do this for a very long time, longer than he could remember, but he had never wanted it under these circumstances; he wasn't sure she even knew what was going on or, more importantly, if the real Hermione even felt the same way about him.
Draco didn't ask questions without first knowing the answers, he didn't do spontaneous romantic things without first knowing the exact outcome, he didn't cry at films, he didn't aww at puppies…but he had fallen in love. Granted the conditions for their first kiss weren't perfect, but he was here and she was here more or less and it had happened.
He had a feeling deep down that she would be okay after this; Voldemort's life force or whatever he was would diminish and Hermione would come back to him, and she would be his.
Draco, for the first time in his life, had faith that love would really conquer all.
When Draco pulled away his eyes were closed tight and Harry was standing in the doorway of the room with a stupid grin on his face as he watched his two best friends kiss for the very first time. He felt odd about it, since Hermione wasn't really Hermione, but the most evil wizard in the world, but he pretended to be happy for them anyway.
Harry cleared his throat, "What do you reckon?"
Draco turned towards him, "Emmm…" he trailed off, and looked at Hermione through one open eye and one closed. He was worried that Voldemort would still be there, laugh coldly and then kill them both without another thought. "Hermione?"
"What the HELL just happened?!" She turned to Harry, "Well?"
Harry was grinning still, "I think Draco kissed you, but I've been down here a long time and my eyes might be deceiving me."
"Are you Hermione?" Draco asked her, both eyes closed once more.
"Do I LOOK like Hermione?" She retorted hotly, placing her hands on her hips.
"That is no longer a fool proof assumption. Just because someone LOOKS like someone doesn't mean they ARE that person." Draco sighed, "Please tell me you're not Voldemort."
"I should hope not, I've never seen Voldemort wear makeup." She still sounded rather put-out, but neither young wizard knew why.
"I have," Harry shuddered, "It's an awful scarring sight."
Draco swallowed hard and opened his eyes, watching as Hermione turned towards him, "Did you just kiss me?"
"I believe so, yes." He nodded, sounding scared; he was probably worried she'd slug him.
"And why did you do that?"
"Voldemort had taken over your body!" Draco exclaimed, sounding hysterical, "And he said that the spell could be broken if someone loved you a great deal and if they kissed you to prove it or some such nonsense."
"You love me?" Hermione asked, her voice quieter now.
"Didn't you hear me when I said I have for a really long time? I was looking at you."
"I was apparently indisposed," she remarked, smiling a little. "The last thing I remember before you kissing me is…well, I don't remember anything."
Harry's eyes widened, "You have amnesia?"
"Post-traumatic stress disorder," Draco said, "Snogging me does that to girls, I've noticed."
"Oh shut up," Hermione said, "How do we get out of here, oh there's the door." She smiled, nodded and made her way past the both of them, out into the small corridor. "Come along, then, let's get out of here. It's creepy."
"What. The. Hell." Draco stated, sounding completely shocked. "What happened?"
"I believe you saved her with your snogging ability," Harry joked, "Plus, you're a tad in love with her, which probably helped."
"I'm in love with you too!" Hermione shouted from up the stairs, "Let's get out of here, please!"
"Did she say she loved me?" Draco asked, his voice higher than usual.
"YES! Get your butts up here!"
"Better go," Harry said to him, sounding forlorn, "It seems you're already whipped and a relationship hasn't even started."
Draco stepped up next to him and clapped a hand on his back, "You know what, Potter? I don't even care. I'm just glad she's okay."
Hermione, Draco and Harry were soon out of the building and on their way back to headquarters. They apparated to Sirius' cave and were met with jubilant celebration from their fellowship members. After telling the long and daunting tale of what had happened, Draco had pronounced his love for Hermione in front of everyone.
Ron had fainted, and after they'd revived him, Seamus had arrived back stating that he didn't want to leave his friends in jeopardy no matter how hard it had been for him. He was happy to see that everyone was okay, and had explained about Justin while Ginny comforted him.
Draco and Harry never mentioned to anyone that there might have been a way to reverse the outcome of the Dementor's Kiss.
Once back in London the fellowship had been given two months paid holiday from Percy, but in true Percy fashion he had said they'd better not let their new-found fame get to their heads. He added that they'd better not let their work slip when they returned.
Hermione confessed that she'd avoided Draco all those years because she didn't trust her feelings for him. She felt that it was simply a crush and it would go away, but it hadn't. Draco told her he'd loved her since the day he saw her on the Hogwarts Train at the start of their first year. She hadn't believed him.
The fellowship is a team now, at the Ministry, taking all cases together; they are the most successful Aurors ever to grace the wizarding world.
Seamus retired, however, after a year and married Ginny, the only person to truly understand him.
The fellowship learned one thing from the horrid ordeal; something they never forgot. No matter how dark it gets, and how hopeless it seems, your true friends will be there for you.
And out of darkness, there will be light.