Draco huffed angrily at yet another false lead. It had been weeks since Hermione had been kidnapped and Draco was beyond frustrated. He hardly ate or slept anymore and went through his classes on autopilot. He paced furiously in Dumbledore's office while listening to his father and the Headmaster discuss a new plan. His father had been using his underground connections to try to find his daughter in law and was coming up with nothing. Any lead they had, when raided showed she had been there recently but was long gone. Draco kicked a chair in frustration and ran his hands through his hair.
"I've gotta go. I can't do this right now." Draco made to stalk out of the office but his father's voice stopped him.
"I know how hard this must be Draco, I-" Whatever Lucius was going to say was cut off.
"HOW CAN YOU KNOW HOW HARD THIS IS? YOU'RE VEELA IS AT HOME SAFE. YOU GET TO GO HOME TO HER EVERY NIGHT. HERMIONE IS GONE! I just, I can't do this anymore father. I need her here. Its killing her that she's gone." As a rule, Malfoy's didn't cry, but Draco couldn't help it. He had finally got his girl and she was ripped away from him. It was like the universe was playing a cruel joke on him. He collapsed onto the floor and buried his face in his hands as his shoulders shook.
"Mr. Malfoy, perhaps you should see Madame Pomfrey about a Calming Draught and some Dreamless Sleep Potion." Dumbledore eyed the man on the floor with concern. His fellow students had told him how little the young Mr. Malfoy ate and slept, and he could see how it was taking its toll on him. His once aristocratic features were now dull and hollow, his sleek, shiny hair, limp and lifeless, and his healthy physique was thin and his bones jutted out. Draco just nodded his head and left the office.
"Albus, we have to find that girl. I fear the worst for the both of them should she gone any longer. Cissa has been telling me that Hermione is probably in worse shape than Draco and is probably barely alive. It is sheer luck that they bonded before she was taken, otherwise, there would be no chance of her surviving this long." Dumbledore nodded his head sadly.
"She must be in some kind of cell or bonds that limit her magic, otherwise, she'd easily over power her captors. Miss Lorner was a very powerful witch before her transformation, adept at wandless and non verbal magic by the time she was in her fifth year." A look of surprise flashed across Lucius' face.
"Very powerful indeed. If she could just use a burst of magic, Cissa said that through their bond, Draco would be able to locate her. Although Cissa is a Veela, she's only one quarter and our bond isn't nearly as strong as my son and his Veela's."
"Yes, well, see if there is anything else you can dig up. I must see to it that the young Mr. Malfoy gets some sleep. We may have to start him on anti- depressants." Lucius nodded his head sadly and Flooed back to his wife.
Hermione lie on the ground as her captors stood above her broken and bleeding body.
"Stupid bitch. This is what you get for ruining our lives!" A sharp kick landed on her already bruised ribs. She tried to scoot away, but her shackles didn't allow any movement and cut into her wrist. She tried to summon any strength but she had none left. She didn't know how long it had been since she was taken, but after she woke up, she hadn't felt her Veela and it scared her. She could feel her restraints suppressing her magic and it weakened her even more. Her vision was almost always swimming and her whole body felt broken and bruised. One of the other captors laughed and began speaking.
"Just wait. Soon we'll have the Malfoy brat too, and our revenge will be all the sweeter. This bitch will have to watch as we torture and kill her precious fucking mate right in front of her and there won't be shit she'll be able to do about it!" A hand shot out and grabbed her by the hair and yanked her head back painfully. She was met with the face of a man she recognized, but couldn't put a name to the face. His foul breath washed over her face as he snarled at her.
"Hear that you little cunt! Tomorrow you'll be united with your precious fucking brat just to watch him die!" Spittle flew from his mouth and landed on her face. If she had anything in her stomach, she would've probably vomited.
Her mind finally registered what the vile man had said and her mind screamed. NO! Not her Draco! She would die before letting anything happen to him. She felt something in her stomach that started out as a small warm ball and grew to engulf her whole body. She felt like she was on fire and screamed. The man holding her hair threw her back to the ground. She could scarcely hear the men backing up and shouting, but couldn't make out what they were saying over the rushing in her ears.
She vaguely felt her shackles pull against her wrists and ankles as she raised off the ground, the warmth in her pulsed and the snapped. The pulsing was getting stronger and she heard things breaking all around her. The shouting continued and she heard the pops of Apparation. The pulsing was all she felt now and she began to emit a white light so bright, she had to shut her eyes. With one last scream, the heat left her and that was the last thing she remembered.
Draco shot out of his bed. He felt her! The golden thread that had developed after their bond had been hanging limply for the passed few weeks and now it had suddenly snapped back in place so violently, it had awaken Draco out of his potion induced sleep. He clutched his chest as his breath came in harsh pants. He knew where she was! He stood up out of his bed so harshly, he stumbled and fell to the floor. Quickly getting up and grabbing his wand, he rushed to the Headmaster's office. He shouted the password and didn't even wait for the statue to fully get out of his way before sprinting up the steps.
"PROFESSOR! PROFESSOR! I KNOW WHERE SHE IS!" He almost ripped the door off its hinges and slid to a stop in front of Dumbledore's desk.
"Draco, are you sure?" Dumbledore had a grave look on his face. Draco furiously nodded his head. "Then we mustn't waste any time. I'll alert the Ministry and you wake Misters Potter and Weasley and Miss Weasley."
"No! I'm going with!" Dumbledore was about to argue, but the look on Draco's face told him it wouldn't do any good.
It took an agonizing ten minutes for the Aurors and Lucius to show up. They made their way down to the Grounds with brooms in their hands ready to go. They shot off into the sky with lightening fast speed with Draco in the lead. He closed his eyes and let the bond guide him. They had been flying for over twenty minutes when Draco suddenly swooped into a graceful dive. It took less than a second for the others to follow. The remains of a run down shack stood in the middle of a clearing in some forest and there was a faint light being emitted from somewhere underneath.
Draco took a step forward but was stopped by a firm hand on his should. His father simply shook his head no. Draco grit his teeth but didn't move. Dumbledore was off to the side waving his wand over the ruble while the Aurors scouted the surrounding area. Several minutes had passed before anyone said anything.
"There's no one here. Perhaps the Malfoy boy was wrong Albus." An unnamed Auror sneered in the direction of the Malfoy men. Lucius curled his lip in disgust, but before he could retort, Draco bolted from his side and started digging through the demolished house. The others looked on while he furiously dug through the remains. He leaned down and pulled on something. It took them several moments to realize it was a human arm. Several levitation spells were said and Draco soon had a very badly damages Hermione in his lap. Draco almost wept at the sight of her.
Her normal pale, flawless skin was covered in gashes and ugly bruises, Her beautiful silky hair was matted with her blood and grime, and under the bruises and dirt, she was pale. Paler than him and he was afraid the worst had happened. His slender fingers fluttered over her face and she was ice cold. He hugged her to his chest and let the tears flow again. A flurry of action burst his bubble as the Aurors, Dumbledore, and his father tried to pry her out of his arms. When they had successfully removed her from his embrace, he began kicking, shouting, and screaming until his throat was raw and tried everything to get out of the arms restraining him.
He finally broke free and was running towards the group the had surrounded Hermione's prone form on the ground. He was almost there when someone caught him around the waist.
"HERMIONE!" His arm reached out to where she was as he was once again hauled backwards.
"Get Mr. Malfoy out of here. He is only distracting us right now. The girl is alive but in very critical condition. She needs-" The Head Auror's sentence was cut off as the group surrounding Hermione was blown backwards. Hermione had rolled onto her side and her eyes were cracked open looking at Draco. He suddenly felt the restraining arms around him release and an 'oomph' as whoever it was, was thrown backwards. He wasted no time in running to Hermione's side and dropping to his knees. He scooped up he limp form and cradled her close. One of her weak hand clutched his shirt and she peeked at him through half closed eyes.
"Draco." Her voice was hoarse and scratchy but it was the most beautiful thing in the world to Draco. All he could do was nod his head and leaned into her and placed a chaste kiss on her cracked, chapped lips. The moment their lips touched, they both blacked out.