A/N: It was my 20th birthday on 15/01. Hmm, somehow I felt older last year.
These days, I'm making exams … AGAIN.
The main reason that I'm uploading so slowly is that I'm working on TEN fics at the same time.
Yes, I know I haven't put all of them online. I'm not going to either.
I'll only be posting those when they're done. So that I will update them regularly.
Chapter 3: First Impr … Second Impressions.
I woke from the feeling of someone watching me. Merlin these sheets are soft! I decided to open my eyes slowly,
not wanting to startle the other person in the room.
Two large blue eyes were staring at me about two inches from my face. "Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!" I couldn't help but scream.
"Oh no's! oh no's! Master told Calla not to wake Miss. Calla is bad elf, very bad elf."
The young looking elf seemed to be searching for something. (Probably something to hit itself with)
When it didn't find anything in the practically empty room, it conjured up a lamp.
"NO, STOP! Don't hurt yourself!" I yelled before the elf could hit herself.
The elf seemed to pause for a bit but went to hit herself again just a couple seconds later.
"Please don't hurt yourself. I'm so sorry I screamed. Please … please stop."
"Oh no's, not the fault of miss. It is the fault of Calla. Calla had to check if miss was well, not scare miss."
The elf was lowering the lamp. "Is miss well?" she asked, her big blue eyes misting over.
"I'll be fine. I only have a headache. Could you tell me where I am? Or how I got here?
I don't seem to remember." I told the elf with a friendly smile.
"Calla will get the Master to help with the headhurt but Master told Calla not to answer questions from miss.
I is sorry miss. I go get Master now."
"No, no, no, don't get …" Crack! "… him."
"Oh shit, oh shit, oh shit!" I got up from the bed and made for the window.
'cause there was no way that the door was open and another showdown was going to kill me for sure.
Ooooomph. I fell to the ground. I had forgotten about my poor physical state caused by the torture.
I rolled to my back. "Aaaaaaah!"
Ok, so maybe, I was in more pain than I let on. I tried to move my legs again … to no avail.
Now I've done it. I'm on this hardwood floor with no way to go. There is but one thing for me to do:
Wait until he gets here and see what he wants with me.
Knock, knock. The door opened and I saw a pair of biker boots entering the room. Sooooo not Malfoy's.
"Homenum Revelio!" a bright blue light came from the bed and stopped above my head.
"Beside the bed? Really?" He walked around the foot of the bed and gazed down on me.
"What are you doing down there? The bed was less comfortable I take it?"
He asked while smirking and added more seriously:
"You've been out for nine days. We'll give you strengthening potions and hopefully you'll be able to walk in two."
He held his hand out to me. "Come on, I'll help you up."
My hand didn't move an inch. "You don't actually believe that I'll take your hand, do you?!"
I spoke with as much revulsion as I could. "Just leave me alone!"
He pulled his hand slightly back, eyeing me carefully before reaching even further,
putting my arm around his shoulders and pulling me to the bed.
"Couldn't you just tell me your legs are still as good as paralysed?" He said with a sigh.
"Could you just tell me about your wife or daughter?" I mumbled, keeping my voice low and my eyes down while turning away from him.
"My Potions Master will bring you your potions as soon as they're finished." He crossed the room towards the door.
"If you need anything else, ask Calla she would be thrilled to take care of you."
While he was closing the door, I could just hear him whisper: "I haven't been able to just tell someone.
Just like you haven't been able to tell that your parents were murdered despite you trying to protect them."
He left the room, leaving me alone with his parting words and my own thoughts.
How did he know I didn't tell anyone? Did he spy on me? Was he able to get past my occlumency-shield? Did he …
oh, Merlin … I don't have a clue how he found out.
I hadn't told anyone in the order.
Dumbledore still send my parents chocolates every month, which the owl now brought to me.
It made me cry every time.
Harry and Ron still thought I was spending the summer with my parents and didn't think anything of it.
(Did they even know i had been kidnapped?)
The twins however had noticed something was wrong but agreed to let me tell them in my own time.
And now I was here, in a mansion but a prison nonetheless.
This room they'd put me in is magnificent and still I'd rather be back in the dungeons.
I knew what they wanted and expected of me when I was still there.
I wasn't so sure about my role up here, in this golden cage. Was I even allowed in the rest of the manor?
Ugh, better sleep a little while longer.
That way I'll be fully rested to have some witty conversations with whoever enters my room next.
"Come on, wake up woman. I'm not going to stand here all evening, waiting for you to wake up.
Some of these potions need to be consumed very accurately.
So if you don't want to be poisoned because you took them without instruction, I highly suggest getting up this instant."
A stern impatient voice penetrated my still sleepy thoughts.
Was he talking about potions? He must've been. "Just leave them at the door." I said in a sleepy voice. "I'm sure I'll manage."
I didn't even turn around to see who the man was that the voice belonged to.
With my back to the man, I waved dismissively over my shoulder, wishing for the man to leave me alone.
"No, surely it cannot be. Mia is that you?" the man rushed to the bed, making me sit up in panic.
The suddenness of the moment made my magic lash out and before either of us knew, I had him smashing headfirst into the wall.
The potions he'd carried rolling away over the carpet.
"Ooh no! I didn't mean to do that." I pushed myself of the bed, falling to the ground immediately.
I looked at the man for the first time since he'd entered the room and it all fell into place.
That voice. Him calling me 'Mia'. The potions he was carrying.
I crawled over to him and took his head into my lap, checking him for injuries.
"Please be alright, please be alright. You have to be alright. Wake up Severus, wake up!" I was starting to tear up.
An entire week of torture and not a tear but Severus Snape unconscious and I turn into a big cry baby.
"M-Mia, is that really you?" He was starting to regain consciousness.
"Are you well? I searched everywhere for you and you were right here under my nose."
"You're asking me how I am?" I asked him incredulously. "I just threw you against a wall and you're wondering if I am well?!"
"Naturally." He said with a stern expression as if I had insulted him.
I smiled at him and responded after a couple seconds. "I am as good as can be expected I suppose."
My smile fell a little. I didn't want him to know what I'd been through.
He would blow it out of proportion and blame himself for everything I went through.
Especially because I suffered at the hands of his best friend.
"The Dark Lord doesn't wish to inform Severus about your stay here. Did you know that?" Lucius Malfoy asked me sneeringly.
"Crucio." I was writhing in pain.
"I asked you a question, girl. Answer me." He wasn't merely sneering now. He was getting annoyed with me.
I decide to play along for a bit and shook my head, indicating that I didn't know.
"Well, he seems to think that my oldest friend, Severus Snape, has a weak spot for you.
Personally, I think that he would like to join me in this little game of 'How to make the mudblood scream'
but I can't just disobey orders without any repercussions now can I? So let us continue playing."
He smirked at me as if he was savouring the anticipation of his next curse.
"…Mia...ou..ere, Mia,… Hermione!" A hand was waving in front of my eyes.
I blinked once and then a second and third time before coming back to the present.
"Oh, I'm sorry Severus, I must be more tired than I thought, dozing of like that." I smiled gently at him and I knew that I hadn't fooled him a bit.
When he gave me a slight nod, I knew that he'd decided to drop the issue for the moment but that he would not forget about it.
He stood up and helped me back to the bed. "Come on, let us get these potions in you.
You need to get better soon, so I can get you out of here.
The order has sent some reconnaissance teams to all kind of places but they never thought to look here."
He kept talking while practically force feeding me all of his potions.
"Ugh, ugh, where exactly is 'here'?" I asked him, half choking on those disgusting potions of his.
(It's a good thing they're the best or I wouldn't take them for the world)
He had a little smirk on his face and he raised one of his eyebrows.
"You're saying The Dark Lord didn't tell you?" He knew I didn't like things being kept from me and was purposefully annoying me, distracting me.
Why wasn't he just telling me?
He sighed deeply when he saw the look on my face. "We're in Riddle Manor, Hermione."
"Ha, you're joking right?" He kept looking at me. "Shit, you're not. How did they get me in here? Isn't the Order tracking this place?"
"They are Mia but perhaps they are merely watching the outside instead of the floos." Severus stated.
"And what about the apparition- and portkey- wards? Are you trying to tell me that everyone in this manor floo's in? Really?" Disbelief was colouring my voice.
"There weren't any additional wards put on the house by The Order, Dumbledore only warded the floo and the gates." Severus said in earnest.
"Severus … why are you lying to me about where we are?" Betrayal could be hurt in my voice.
"I'm not lying to you, Mia. We are in Riddle Manor." He stressed his words, trying to force me to believe him.
"Severus Snape, I know you're lying to me. So stop it, now. I warded that Manor myself two days after your visit with professor Dumbledore.
So there's no way we can be there without The Order knowing that somebody entered.
I'll tell you even more, you fucking liar." I pushed against his chest trying to get him of the bed and away from me.
"I set the wards to tell how many people enter, how they enter, where they enter the premises,
even how many of those entering are branded with the bloody Dark Mark." I pushed him again and this time he actually moved to stand.
"So don't you lie to me Severus Snape. I thought I could trust you! That you trusted me. Merlin, I'm so stupid.
Next, you'll be saying your loyalty has always been with Riddle instead of with The Order."
A soft snigger reached my ears and my eyes flew towards the door, where the sound came from.
Riddle was leaning against the door frame, smirking at Severus.
"She figured you out already Severus. Better come clean now my friend."
"Friend huh." I said neutrally, not even looking at Snape anymore. "I should have guessed it, I suppose."
"Why of course, after all, he is one of my most loyal …" Riddle started but didn't get to finish his gloating.
"Shut your mouth Tom." Severus interfered, colouring slightly with rage.
"Leave her alone."
"Ha, I knew you had a weak spot for her Severus.
Tell me, have you been looking for her since I sent a group to get her here?"
It seemed like he was trying to get him to snap.
"I don't know, Tom. That depends on how long she's been here, now doesn't it." Severus replied looking calm, but still seething with anger.
"Why Severus, didn't your best friend Lucius tell you when she arrived?
But he spend so much time with her in her previous accommodations. Surely he told you." His smirk widened.
I saw Severus turn a sickly pale white before turning my head away from him.
Shit, he'd know now.
How Lucius tortured me.
Severus glanced quickly my way before addressing Riddle.
"Tell me you didn't. She's just a girl, you couldn't have. Not Lucius."
Riddle didn't respond. He just looked away. Which was an answer on its own. Yes, he did and no, he wasn't very proud of it.
Severus took a couple steps towards me, his hand reaching out to me. "Mia…" His voice sounded broken.
I didn't look at him and scooted further to the edge of the bed, avoiding his touch.
"Just leave me alone professor. I don't need your pity."
His arm fell and he took a step backwards. It hurt him to know what Lucius might have done to the girl he considered a daughter.
It hurt him that she would call him professor when she hadn't done so in over two years.
He knew when he wasn't wanted so he left the room, whispering a quiet threat when passing Riddle.
"If anything else happens to her, I'll know."
He didn't need to say what he'd do if she was hurt again.
As he was a Slytherin, it was implied that the other man would die if he did not heed the warning.
"What do you want Riddle?" I knew he hadn't left and just didn't answer, so I turned to face him.
"I told you I'd help you find your daughter, what more do you want from me?" I couldn't help letting a little emotion slip in.
He had taken one of the few things I thought I had left.
Severus Snape wasn't just an acquaintance, nor was he merely a friend.
I loved him as the father I'd lost and now I learned that I was merely a pawn in this game, he played with my enemy.
I felt like someone pushed their hand in my chest, grabbed my heart and pulled it out. Only to drop it on the floor and squash it under a shoe.
"I only came to see if you had taken your potions. I'll be leaving now." Riddle informed me finally.
"Hum, hum." The clearing of a throat made me look behind Riddle.
There stood a small house elf. The elf seemed to be looking quite sternly at him.
"Aren't you forgetting something Master?" The elf was urging him on.
He glared at it. "Fine." He hissed at the creature.
Then he turned to face me again. "I'd like you to accompany me to dinner tomorrow evening.
My closest friends will be there and they should know not to harm you while you're staying here, so you will be presented as my guest.
One of the elves will get you ready in time and I'll pick you up at your door.
It wouldn't do to run into one of my friends when they aren't aware of your residence here."
He started to leave, only to turn back around after a couple steps.
"You should get some sleep." He hesitated as if he wanted to say something more.
"He didn't betray you, you know. He cares about you. I could tell. Otherwise I wouldn't have bothered to keep, you being in this house a secret from him."
He left, the elf close on his heels.
What's wrong with him? Does he have a personality disorder or something? Maybe he's bipolar.
First, he lets Lucius torture me which is not what I would call nice. Then he gives me this room, which is pretty nice.
Later, he angers Severus, baiting and hurting him and me. Then he goes and invites me to dinner,
even going as far as tell me that Severus does care for me.
Bipolar for sure.
A/N: It is even longer than the previous chapter. Do I get any points for that?
Who can guess what the next chapter's gonna be?
R & R please