Disclaimer:All recognizable characters and fictional places do not belong to me; I am merely borrowing them for playtime before (respectfully) putting them back. Thank you JKR, for allowing such things to happen.
Thank You: To Quilter for being my cheerleader and holding my hand all the way through this, BSC_AG and Nathaniel Cardeu for betaing, to susanmarier for her superb banner!
Pairings/Main Characters: Draco Malfoy and Hermione Granger
Story Summary:Every side of any war has it's fanatics...
Warnings: This story is rate MA, and is not suitable for children under 18. It is AU, and includes strong language, lemons (graphic sex), mention of violence, mention of non-con, and mention of torture. It does not have a fluffy ending.
Story Dedication: This story is dedicated to JM2010 for her 200th review of The Lucky Ones!
THE OTHER EXTREME
Introduction: (In which Hermione Granger is made aware of several things that were unexpected.)
Hermione followed Colin Creevy down one of the many halls that made up the dungeons of Hogwarts, not entirely sure where she was. Somewhere near the Hufflepuff side of things, she thought, not Slytherin. Not for the first time that afternoon, she wished she had the Marauder's Map with her, and wondered how she always managed to get herself into these sorts of random excursions. She was only one of six Gryffindor Prefects, after all.
Nonetheless, she could hardly say no when Colin had informed her that her presence was needed down in the dungeons. He was wide-eyed and eager as usual, tugging on her hand with alarming urgency.
The tension in the sixth year's demeanor had Hermione on edge and made her think that maybe Voldemort had finally begun to make his move. Since the Dark Wizard's return at the end of her fourth year and the battle at the Ministry during her fifth, things had been surprisingly quiet. She had expected war to break out in the last couple of years; maybe Dumbledore's confrontation with Voldemort had forced the Dark wizard to revaluate his plans. Whatever the case it at least gave Hermione the chance to complete her schooling and get her N.E.W.T.s as she had wanted.
So here she was, wand out, other hand firmly grasped in Colin's, trailing him through the dungeon corridors during her valuable (and all too scarce) study time. He led her to what appeared to be an unassigned staff suite of some kind. Her glance around what would have been a professor's sitting area or office informed her of no pending emergency, merely a gathering of an unlikely assortment of students.
Hermione took a quick inventory of the room's occupants, wondering what they all had in common. There were four Gryffindors, two Ravenclaws, count them five Hufflepuffs, and even a Slytherin, all ranging from their second year up. One of the Ravenclaws was Anthony Goldstein. What in the world did Colin need her for when he already had a seventh-year prefect down here?
"Colin! Why did you bring her here?" That was Anthony himself, looking alarmed.
"She's Harry Potter's best friend! No one's loyalty to the cause could be more assured, and we could use some legitimacy before we talk to Harry himself," Colin justified, his voice wavering. "Plus, she's an amazing witch; everyone says so. She can probably come up with ideas and plans that we haven't thought of, yet!"
Romilda Vane shook her head. "She also happens to be the Professors' pet, and self-righteous. Bringing her here was a bad idea, Colin."
"I'm telling you, I think she's trustworthy."
"What is going on here?" Hermione was getting impatient. Oddly enough it was Padma who answered, a troubled look in her eyes.
"This is war. A lot of bad things happen in war. The other side, they'll do anything to win. They'll do what's necessary. They torture, steal, rape, kill. If our side isn't willing to do what is needed to get the information we need, to put out of commission our opponents, how are we expecting to win?" Her lips pursed. "I don't have to like it and I know it's going to be hard to live with later, but the point is, we'll live. We have to win this war."
Everyone was nodding, some, like Colin, enthusiastically. Hermione was aghast. "You've been torturing, raping and killing down here?"
"Not killing," Anthony mollified. "We're not stupid, after all. People would notice if Death Eaters in training started dying."
"But raping and torture?" How had a terrorist cell in Harry's name started right under all their noses? At least half the people in the room were members of the DA. Surely Dumbledore had no idea!
"We're doing what needs to be done. We Obliviate most of them afterwards, it's not as if they remember."
"The thing is, we need your help," Colin cut in. "This one we got in there now…"
"He's not responding to our usual methods of persuasion." That was Romilda Vane, looking slightly disgruntled. "He's difficult."
"You're the smartest witch in the school. You can crack him."
"You want me to torture someone?"
"Not torture." Tamsin Applebee shifted uncomfortably. "Interrogate."
"Oh call a spade a spade, Tam." Padma again.
How in the world was she to get out of this mess? She was surrounded by a total of twelve crazy people who were not shy to torture, rape, and Obliviate as needed. She needed to get out intact and bring Dumbledore down here to save whichever student it was, locked up in the other room.
Or maybe she could convince them that she had interrogated and Oblivated him while in there, and after twenty minutes or so of waiting she could just walk him out and report to the headmaster, later. Hermione hesitated, undecided. Then, seeing no better plan, "Let me see him."
"You see, I told you she was trustworthy."
Padma's eyes narrowed fractionally, but she proceeded to other door of the suite, and opened it with a small gesture for Hermione to enter. Hermione stepped through and firmly shut the door behind her. She immediately set about warding it tightly against sound and intrusion, drawing the necessary runes as quickly as she dared. She hardly needed to have bothered. The entire room was heavily warded similarly. Merlin only knew what these idiots had been doing in here.
"Who's there? You fucking arseholes, I'm going to make you wish you weren't born! I'm not telling you a damn thing, and you are going feel the pain from this when you're a hundred!" The boy, tied up and blindfolded in the chair, was beaten and bruised. He'd clearly been stunned and hexed a number of times, and he had a massive erection straining the front of his trousers. One of several empty bottles near the sink was more than enough explanation. They had dosed him with, among other things, a potent lust potion.
Hermione took a deep breath. Of course. Of course it would have to be him. Her day was not so lucky that it couldn't have been anyone else.
"I'm telling you, I'm going to rip your fucking guts out!" Malfoy shouted at her again and Hermione dropped into the chair across from him with a frustrated groan.
Malfoy went still at the noise, cocking his head slightly to the left. Then, oddly, he took a deep breath through his nose. He paused, his brows furrowing above his blindfold, and then did it again. Then, to Hermione's shock, he said, uncertain hope wavering in his voice, "Freyja?"
Oh. Oh, no. Oh Merlin, no. It was him. All this time, Ifreet was Him.
A/N: So this story took way longer for me to write than it should have. It started out as a vague idea following a vaguer prompt from my good friend Kate, and then didn't come to be fleshed out in my head until JM2010 handed me my 200th reveiw for The Lucky Ones on FFN. At this point I finally sat down to actually consider my plot bunny more fully, and something rather darkly wonderful spawned in my head. Here at last is The Other Extreme. I hope you enjoy it.