AN: This story will depict a loving, consensual sub-dom relationship, specifically kitten/kitty play. This relationship will be between two women. This story will move into the Mature rating as things progress. If any of these things offend you, then please feel free to hit the back button and continue on with your life. If these things do not offend you, then I sincerely hope that you enjoy my story.
AN(2): This is an AU story, and I will do my best to clearly convey the deviances from cannon in my exposition and dialog. If I'm not clear about certain things, please feel free to let me know and I will either make an AN explaining things, or try to find a way to work it into the dialog. There will be moments when the characters are VERY OOC, but I will try my best to give these characters logical reasons for acting the way that they do. Also, I just didn't have the patience to try and bumble my way through Fleur's accent, so I chose to forego it.
Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter. Believe me when I say that if I did, many things would have turned out differently…Seriously, "Expelliarmus" against "Avada Kedavara"?!
Chapter 1: A Bloody Day at Grimmauld
The first clue for Fleur came the day that Harry and Hermione apparated into Grimmauld with a bleeding Ron in tow. A loud CRACK had echoed through the dingy house, causing all of the Order members to spring into action, fearful that Snape had told Riddle about the house before his death. Murderer of Dumbledore or not, Riddle quickly determined that it wouldn't do to have such a willing turncoat in his ranks. Besides, with all of the Order ready and willing to shoot the dark man on sight, his usefulness as a spy was well and truly over.
The rush to the entryway didn't reveal a squad of black-robed Death Eaters, but the sight of the three bloody teens was arguably just as bad. Harry was weakly clinging to a shakily-standing Hermione, whose free hand gripped an unconscious Ron's shirt in a white-knuckled grip. Her wand was out and ready to fire, and it was clear that she was struggling to stay conscious as her blood dripped over one tightly shut eye. Remus, rather foolishly felt Fleur, attempted to simply walk in and talk to the weak teens. That strategy was quickly halted when Tonks's Auror-primed reflexes saved Remus from the over-powered Reducto that Hermione shot at him in her panicked state. Right now, Hermione Granger was in full flight-or-fight mode, and having already done her running, she was now a trapped animal ready to protect her friends. Come hell, high water, or Voldemort himself.
Well, that certainly got rid of Mrs. Black… Fleur mused as she watched the blast obliterate over half of the wall the hated portrait hung on. She quickly put her wand away, realizing that it would not help her here, and motioned to everyone else to stay back. The present Order members, leaderless ever since Dumbledore's death, willingly followed the Veela's lead and backed away toward the kitchen, lowering their wands yet keeping them in their hands in case the panicked Muggleborn witch needed to be taken down by force. Minerva, however, stayed with Fleur and quickly positioned herself on the other side of the door frame, so that booth could peer through the doorway into the entry hall. Fleur would have preferred the older witch to be safely tucked in the kitchen, but she knew that a familiar face of authority had a better chance of breaking through to Hermione than anyone else in the Order.
"Hermione" Fleur called in her most calming voice "calm down. You're safe. You're at Grimmauld. No one's going to hurt you."
"STAY BACK!" Hermione screamed, spittle and blood flying as she gasped for breath. "I SWEAR TO GOD, I'LL HEX ANYONE WHO WALKS THROUGH THAT DOOR!"
"Hermione, breathe. You apparated to Grimmauld with Harry and Ron. You need to let us in so we can help Ron. He doesn't look good, Hermione. He needs a healer." Fleur called back, appealing to Hermione's sense of protectiveness over her friends. She heard the fast, wet hisses as Hermione gasped for air through clenched teeth, knowing that the silence was a sign that the Muggleborn was beginning to calm down and think.
"Miss Granger," Minerva called, "it's Fleur and Professor McGonagall. You know that we would never hurt Harry or Ron. We just want to help you, but you need to let us in."
"I won't let them get hurt anymore!" Hermione angrily yelled back, though not as venomously as before. "You hear me?! I WON'T LET YOU HURT THEM!"
"Hermione," Fleur said, her voice sharp with a gentle sternness about it, "we're on the same side. You know that we would never hurt Harry or Ron. I promise you that we're who we say we are." Minerva arched an approving eyebrow at Fleur's shrewdness. If she could give Hermione an excuse to believe it was really them, then she would calm down and let them help her.
"Prove it!" The young, scared witch yelled. "How did I take so many classes in my third year?!"
"With a time-turner that I obtained permission for you to use." Minerva calmly replied. "After a month, I called you back into my office and we had a…conversation…about you getting proper sleep and eating meals."
Fleur's ears perked up at the word "conversation". The way that Minerva said it implied that there was more to the story than a simple sit-down. She filed it away for now. This was neither the time nor the place to sate her curiosity.
"When did we get separated from you all this year?!" Hermione was noticeably calmer, but they still chose to wait a bit longer before peeking around the corner.
"A week after Harry's birthday." Fleur answered. "Mrs. Weasley insisted on giving him a proper party with his friends. During the party, a patronus arrived from Kingsley saying 'The Ministry has fallen. Scrimgeour is dead. They are coming.'." As she spoke, Fleur couldn't stop the shiver that ran down her back. Even three months later, those words sent a cold chill down her back.
"…Okay, you two can come in. SLOWLY! Don't make any sudden movements! Harry's not the only one who learned some dangerous spells last year, and I have no qualms about killing Death Eaters!"
Fleur didn't doubt that final statement for a second. After almost dying at the Department of Mysteries, Hermione had become much less merciful toward Voldemort's followers than her peers. On the night of the "Hogwarts Invasion", as it came to be known, Hermione had saved Bill's life by banishing a silver knife through Fenrir Greyback's heart. The action was met with equal parts gratitude and fear from the Weasley's, but they ultimately chose to simply be grateful that their eldest wasn't dead or infected with lycanthropy. Whatever romantic feelings existed between Ron and Hermione ended that night, however. Sometimes watching your girlfriend kill someone with no remorse, no matter how evil that person may be, can just be too much for a guy.
With their hands up and clearly visible, Fleur and Minerva took slow and deliberate steps into the entryway. Hermione had set Harry and Ron on the floor and was now backed into a corner, wand trained on the two witches. Minerva walked over to the boys and knelt beside of them, feeling for a pulse on both. Meanwhile, Fleur continued trying to talk Hermione down from her adrenaline rush.
"Hermione, we need to get Madame Pomphrey in here to look at them. She needs to look at you, too. You're hurt badly." Fleur looked worriedly at the blood dripping from her free hand. She was certain that the odd bump in the girl's sleeve was indicative of a broken bone, possibly one that had broken the skin. Hermione likely wasn't aware of the break now, but once the adrenaline wore off, she was definitely going to be feeling it.
Hermione's wand wavered, and Fleur saw something in the girl's eyes that gave the Veela a clue to something much deeper than what was happening right now. For a moment, she saw a naked and primal fear in Hermione's brown eyes. In that moment, Fleur saw right into her very soul, and saw the girl's anger at the situation, at the Death Eaters, at Voldemort, and at herself. She saw the fear of what was to come, fear of the upcoming final battle, fear of her mission, fear of what "peace" would mean for her, and fear of what she was feeling in her heart. She saw so much physical and emotional pain, that it took her breath completely from her body. Pain that was constantly being hidden behind a mask of righteous fury, uppity knowledge, and forced courage and false hope.
Most of all, she saw the raw need in those brown eyes. The need for peace, for reassurance, for a safe place to hide. The need for…
…Fleur's eyes widened as the Veela within her sang in pure joy. Time seemed to slow. She became oblivious to the world around her. In that moment, Fleur Delacour made her decision.
When all of this madness was finally over, she was going to collar Hermione Granger.