A/N: Hello readers! This is my first fanfic that I have ever written and published so I am quite nervous as to the reaction I will get (if I get any readers at all haha). I hope that it is to your liking. This is going to be a Sirius/Hermione time travel fic. I am going to try my hardest to make it as original and interesting as possible. Enjoy!
A/N (July 19, 2011): Okay, so I'm a failure at life. I've been reading through many of these chapters and have realized that Hermione fighting by herself isn't canonically possible, seeing that she is with Ron or Harry most of the time. So, I realized that I was in a bit of a pickle and got extremely stressed out. So, in order to make this possible, I am taking after the movie here and pretending that this happened right after Harry "comes back to life" and BEFORE Hermione and Ron go off searching for the snake. I have added a few extra sentences here or there that will support this new approach. Please forgive my giant fail; I would have edited it so that it occurred at a different time but then that would have messed everything up.
Disclaimer: I have cried myself to sleep many a time due to the small fact that I do not own the Harry Potter book series.
The Time Traveler's Burden
Chapter 1 - Glacialis Tempore
Falling debris cascaded down on members of the Order of the Phoenix and students alike as they fought for their lives under the starry night sky. Jets of brightly colored spells whizzed threateningly through the air, some missing their mark, while others directly met their targets.
Death Eaters and Dark creatures swarmed through the wreckage that once was the Entrance Hall of Hogwarts. The dead and injured count grew with every passing minute.
In the middle of the mêlée was a sizable blonde Death Eater. Curses shot out of his wand faster than anyone could keep up with. He did not seem to be battling anyone; he was simply brandishing his wand and shouting out Dark curses in the hopes that they would hit an enemy.
Hermione Granger was fighting like her life depended on it – which it quite literally did. The speed upon which curses were flying from her mouth was only rivaled by that of the yellow haired Death Eater. Unlike her enemy, Hermione's spells were hitting their target every time. Death Eaters were dropping at her feet Immobilized and Stunned almost too fast to keep up with.
Screams came from Hermione's left. Hermione spun towards that direction and shouted, "Petrificus Totalus!" Death Eater Scabior's legs and arms snapped together immediately.
"Thanks, Hermione!" said Parvati Patil, who had been fighting him. Hermione could only spare her a nod as she rushed on through bodies, some running, some limping, while others lay stationary on the floor. Hurt or dead, Hermione couldn't tell. She prayed to every god she knew that all of her friends were safe.
Thoughts were buzzing so fast through Hermione's head that she could barely keep up with what was happening as she skirted duelists. She knew she needed to find Harry and Ron, and quick, but she couldn't bear to leave her friends and classmates fighting Death Eaters without her help. She would never forgive herself if one of them died when an able bodied person like herself was there to protect them. However, her heart rammed in her chest as she came to terms with the fact that Harry was indeed alive, and probably attempting to fight Voldemort at this very moment. She also felt uncontrollable fear for Ron, who had ran through the battling crowd and to the Grand Staircase.
"Crucio!" she heard the blonde Death Eater yell. She ducked, pulling down the two fighters nearest with her before bounding forth again.
"Avada- " Hermione heard a Death Eater begin, his wand trained on Luna Lovegood.
"Impedimenta!" Hermione yelled with wild abandon, her heart pounding in her ears. The force of her spell knocked the Death Eater backwards, causing his mask to fall off.
"Yaxley," she snarled as she turned away from the unconscious Death Eater. She paused her fighting to assure herself that Luna was unhurt.
It all happened suddenly.
"Glacialis tempore!" The blonde Death Eater yelled, a crazed look in his eyes, his wand pointed directly at Hermione.
There was nothing she could do. A fiery, electric blue stream of light erupted from his wand. The Death Eater looked amazed at the effect his spell was creating, not realizing what the result would be on its victim. The curse flew at Hermione, hitting her directly in the chest.
The last thing she saw was the frenzied look on the Death Eater's face and Luna's expression of terror before her vision went black.
"Padfoot, you git, can you slow down? The kitchen isn't going anywhere, you know. And the cloak doesn't fully cover our feet so if McGonagall sees two pairs of rogue feet floating around she'll somehow pin it back to us." James Potter whispered feverishly to his best friend, Sirius Black. He and Sirius were carefully inching their way to the kitchens in hopes of getting a midnight snack.
"Prongs, do we ever get caught?" Sirius said, a mischievous grin making its way onto his face.
"Good point. Now shush, we have to go through the Entrance Hall and you know Filch likes to lurk this area specifically," James muttered as they slowly made their way across the Hall.
The clock loudly chimed 12:00, causing James to step on Sirius' foot in fright.
Sirius yelped, "Merlin, James!" He knelt down quickly to massage his toes, "That hurt, you bugger!"
"Sorry, mate," James said, trying to fight the smile threatening to make its way onto his face.
James and Sirius were no where near prepared for what came next.
They had resumed their journey across the ornate Hall and were now nearing the center when a ear-piercing, otherworldly noise erupted from the air. A sliver of blue light appeared in the middle of the hall. As the light stretched and lengthened, the sound grew to a painful level.
"Holy shit, Sirius I think we set an alarm off!" James said frantically, attempting to make a run for it. But Sirius gripped James' arm, shaking his head with his mouth agape.
"Prongs, I think something is coming out of the light!" Sirius said loudly, straining to be heard over the din.
James was filled with doubt before turning to look at the light. His eyes widened as he saw what appeared to be an arm, and then a leg, and then an entire human body fall from the cobalt light and land rather painfully on the stone Entrance Hall floor. The sound disappeared as suddenly as it had come, but the solid body laying on the cobblestone remained.
"Bloody hell," Sirius murmured to himself as he and James rushed forward to the body, both in shock at what happened.
Sirius let out an unmanly gasp as he took in the appearance of the girl. Her curly hair was tangled with dried blood hugging many of the chestnut brown tendrils. Her thin sweatshirt and jeans were torn and bloody and every visible part of her body had small cuts or bruises covering the fair skin. But it was her chest that made Sirius feel fear for the girl's life. Crimson blood was seeping through the fabric quite steadily. Sirius was sure that whatever wound was located there had been inflicted only seconds before, but how, he did not know.
James looked at Sirius with uncharacteristically frightened look on his countenance. "Sirius, what do we do? She looks like she's been through battle!" James raked his hands through his messy black hair, his hazel eyes shining with fear.
Sirius made to pick up the girl, but thought better of it. "Go fetch Madam Pomfrey and send her down here. Tell her it's urgent. Then get Dumbledore or McGonagall," Sirius ordered quickly. James took off without heed.
Sirius knelt down next to the mysterious, gravely injured girl and took the time to examine her. He noticed she was quite pretty underneath all of the cuts, but shook his head of the thoughts. This was not the time for that. This girl could be dying, he thought, his heart rate quickening. He looked over the rest of her body to check if any bones were broken, and noticed that her wrist looked out of place.
Sirius heard a shuffling noise behind him and turned quickly to see Madam Pomfrey flying down the last flight of the Grand Staircase, her loose hair fanning out behind her as she descended the steps. She came to a fast stop in front of Sirius and loudly gasped at the sight of the girl.
She whipped her wand out and speedily conjured a stretcher. Training her wand on the broken girl, the Healer carefully levitated her onto the green stretcher. "Black, follow me," she said in a shaky voice before leading Sirius and the stretcher up the stairs and into the Hospital Wing.
Dumbledore and McGonagall were already there, along with James. Sirius quickly walked over to James, who looked pale. Professor McGonagall almost exclaimed in shock when she saw the girl on the stretcher.
Dumbledore, who had remained silent but looked graver than anyone had ever seen him, spoke, "Poppy, will you be able to save this young lady?"
The nurse, whose face looked tinged with green, said, "I do believe so Albus, but there is still a possibility she may..." Poppy couldn't finish the sentence. She floated the girl to a bed and bustled about rapidly, summoning various vials of brightly colored potions and a plethora of medical instruments. She quickly closed the curtains shut around herself and the girl and went to work.
Dumbledore uncharacteristically sighed and conjured four cushioned chairs, "It is going to be a long night, I am afraid. Minerva, Mr. Potter, Mr. Black, you are more than welcome to stay if you like, but I understand if you would rather return to your rooms." Dumbledore's eyes twinkled momentarily in the direction of the two Marauders, since he knew they must have been up to something in order to have found the unknown girl at this time of night.
James and Sirius smiled slightly at the Headmaster. James spoke up, "We'll stay until she awakes, Professor." The two took a seat. McGonagall sat down as well.
Dumbledore looked at the two boys before inquiring, "Can you two be so kind as to tell me how you happened upon the girl?"
James and Sirius launched into their tale, unabashedly telling Dumbledore of their plans to go the kitchens, finishing with the girl falling from the mysterious, blinding blue light.
Dumbledore had remained silent throughout their recanting of the scenario, a far off look on his face. The boys could tell her was deep in thought, and left him to his own devices. Instead, they settled into their chairs and prepared for a night of waiting.
It was a quarter past three when Madam Pomfrey finished attending to the girl. McGonagall was slumped sideways in her chair, her hair unravelling from the bun she had quickly pulled it into. James and Sirius were leaning on each other's shoulders, attempting to stay awake. Dumbledore hadn't moved at all, his face a mask of worry.
Madam Pomfrey sent all of her supplies back to her office before speaking, "Professor, I believe she is going to pull through just fine."
Dumbledore's face immediately brightened, "That is excellent to hear, Poppy!" James and Sirius were suddenly alert as McGonagall rubbed sleep from her eyes. Dumbledore continued, "To what extent were her injuries?"
Madam Pomfrey answered, "She had a broken wrist, three fractured ribs, and various cuts and contusions. There was an abnormal wound on her chest that I would say was the work of Dark magic." At this, Dumbledore's eyes darkened. The nurse continued, "I managed to patch it up but not without the help of a few ancient healing charms and potions I have never used. She has many scars, but most seem healed or the process of healing. Many of them appear to be the product of more Dark magic. She had an odd one on the front of her neck, as if a knife had been held there momentarily." She finished her report, wringing her hands as she recounted the state the poor girl was in.
Dumbledore nodded grimly. "She seems to have been through quite an ordeal. Did you give her any sleeping potion?"
Madam Pomfrey replied in the affirmative, "Yes, but she seemed to be quite drained of all energy without its help. She didn't awaken once during the whole procedure."
Dumbledore stood up, "Please tell me when she awakes, Poppy. It is most pertinent that I hear her story." He turned to James and Sirius, "I would advise you young men to get some rest. I will allow you two miss classes for tomorrow as well as give you permission to visit our patient. If she awakes in your presence, please fetch me immediately."
James and Sirius nodded, bade the Headmaster good night, and made their way out of the Hospital Wing.
"Wow," James breathed out as they walked out of the Ward, "that girl was in a right bad state. I wonder where she came from."
Sirius nodded in agreement, "I'm sure we'll find out tomorrow." After a pause, he added, "I hope she stays here. She looks like she could use a safe place to stay for a while. She looked like she'd been through Hell and back."
A/N: I hope many of you have made it to the end and enjoyed it! Please review with any comments/criticisms/etc. I am more than willing to accept constructive criticism. I promise to update as readily as life will allow me.
~Amanda aka leafhouse