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The Legend of Hermione Black

Chapter Text

They couldn’t believe she’d done this. They were all shocked, stunned, and appalled by Hermione’s latest act. Even McGonagall. Even after they’d learned what Dumbledore had done, what he’d planned, and that Hermione was pregnant. Instead they’d started coming up with plans to kill the pregnancy. When Ginny objected they called her a traitor.

When she shouted in Ron’s face, told him what they were trying was inhumane, he’d spat back; “at least I’m not a useless dyke!”

It was the gasp and the sound of dishes shattering that told Ginny her mother was there. She turned and saw her mother, tears in her eyes and hands over her mouth. She’d looked so fragile in that moment. A fragility that turned to rage when Ginny said it was true. She’d grabbed Ginny by the hair and thrown her into her room, shouting about how this was “unacceptable,” and “no wonder you’ve been consorting with a death eater!” Then she’d told her she was forbidden from leaving her room until she accepted her place and agreed to marry some young boy. Her mother had taken her wand when she left, and Ginny had dissolved into tears.

She had known her mother wouldn’t take it well, but being forced to marry, having her wand stolen, losing contact with Luna, forced into her room--it was worse than she had expected. The thought of being parted from Luna, especially as the war got worse, was unbearable.

When Bill showed up for his wedding, he was shocked, but made no move to help her. Fleur had reacted much more. A few days after arriving she even got into a shouting match with Ginny’s mum, one that had her hands transforming into the razor-sharp talons of her avian form.

During the argument, Fred had broken into their mum and dad’s room and stolen Ginny’s wand back. He, George, Bill, and Fleur had coordinated everything. When he placed the wand in Ginny’s hand she had roughly twenty minutes to leave. Fred then cast a disillusionment charm on her, and she broke open her window and climbed out. She snuck towards the broomshed. She broke the lock with sheer force and rage, quickly grabbing a pair of Cleansweep Sevens and kicking off.

She arrived at Luna’s, who, unsurprisingly, seemed to have known what would happen. She had packed for both of them. With the dubious blessing of Xenophilius Lovegood the two had quickly attached their luggage to broomsticks and taken off. They flew above the clouds, hoping no sightings would mean Ginny’s parents couldn’t find them.

Neither of them would be able to use magic for a while. Luna would in a few months. Seven, really. Ginny’d have to wait more than a year.

Still, cleaning, cooking, and living without magic would be more than worth it if it meant they would be both together, safe, and not have to fight their friends. It was better than being trapped in her room or a marriage.

Parts of it seemed too good to be true. She was moving to a cottage on the coast of Normandy with her beautiful girlfriend. A cottage their best friend had given them, specifically to be with each other. They would be out of her mother’s reach, and Luna would be out of danger from You-Know-Who’s minions. Luna had even managed to get ahold of some French Muggle money before they left.

Then the rest of it sunk in. Her mother hated her. She’d tried to yell, shout, and lock away her lesbian daughter. Her father and Ron hadn’t bothered to help her. She’d barely managed to get out without promising to marry someone. She was relying on the assistance and goodwill of Bellatrix Black’s soulmate, who had helped a dozen Death Eaters enter Hogwarts and killed Albus Dumbledore

Ginny hadn’t been surprised when she learned Hermione had killed Dumbledore. She’d suspected it after Hermione had body-bound her and Luna. She didn’t really know what to think of it. On the one hand, it was Dumbledore . Leader of the Light, Defender of the Oppressed, the only one You-Know-Who ever feared. On the other hand, he was Dumbledore, the man who had helped kill Hermione’s parents and hide her with an abusive foster family.

Then there was how she had killed him. Harry had been shaking with rage when he came down from the tower, and had not been shy about saying how Dumbledore had died. The Death Eater they’d taken captive, Corban Yaxley, had verified it. He bragged about it. He said her curse made Dumbledore spasm so hard he’d broken bones and dislocated joints. He laughed about it when he was carted off to Azkaban. He was held there for perhaps a week.

Seven crucios. Merlin. She supposed he deserved it for everything that happened to Hermione, but the idea that Hermione, her best friend, was capable of of enough hate to break someone’s bones with the Cruciatus was frightening beyond belief. Harry said it looked worse than what You-Know-Who could do. 

She hoped they’d all come out of it alive and well. Or at the very least alive. Part of her felt like a coward for running away, for refusing to choose a side. The rest of her was glad she had the option. She didn’t want to choose between her family (granted, her unsupportive and forced-abortion-friendly family) and her increasingly dark best friend/soulmate of Bellatrix Black.

Ginny had tried to minimize the damage before she left. She’d sent Hermione a message before they took off. She didn’t want to know how Hermione would exact revenge should the Order’s plot succeed.

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

Lucius Malfoy was a proud man. This was, of course, known and expected, given that he was a pureblood lord. He took pride in many things, his heritage, his pureblood status, his lordship, his magical skill, his political ability, his wealth, his hair, his house--anything and everything that one could take pride in, Lucius Malfoy did.

Which was precisely why his current state of affairs was entirely untenable.

 

After the successful raid on Hogwarts, Lucius had expected to be included and lauded. After all, it was his son who secured the Death Eaters’ route into the castle, even if the MacEcrae bitch had stolen the most important job out from under him. Instead he had been tortured, stripped of his wand, and--

Well, it wouldn’t do to dwell on what else had happened. The other Christian lords he had been gathering had largely been scared off by Dumbledore’s murder and the sheer power of her Cruciatus. That just meant he needed to take matters into his own hands. If one wanted a job done well, they had to do it themselves. Or organize it themselves, in his case.

Mood lifting slightly, Lucius stood from behind his desk. It was time to visit the kitchens.

Chapter Text

“Hermione?” Merlin damn it, where was her little witch? Was she out somewhere? “Hermione?” Was something wrong? Had they moved already? Had she-- “Hermione! Oh thank Morgana, I was running--” Bellatrix’s voice cut out when her wife, Merlin, her wife , plowed into her, hugging her close.

“Bella,” her little witch said, looking up at her with watery eyes and tear-stained cheeks. A hand rose towards her, holding a slightly crumpled letter. Bellatrix could have laughed, had her own news not been so serious. It was so very like her wife to not even fully crumple distressing news.

Bellatrix took the letter and uncrumpled it. She saw a disorganized heap of messy handwriting--that truth be told, had been made worse by her wife’s tears. And the writer’s. Focusing, she unjumbled it enough to read.

 

Hermione,

 

I’m r__ning away with ___a, don’t reply to this ____age. Mum heard Ron call me a d_ke, and l__ed me in my room. Bill, Fleur, Fred, and George helped me get out. Luna and I are going to the place you found.

I ove____rd the Order a while ago. They kno___ou’re pregnant and are planning to end it in some way. I’m not ___e how-___ey don_ trust me, and it was a fight over th______t led to Ron yel____ at me--but I’d be careful with your food for a while, it’s the __s_ obvious way.

 

Love,

Ginny

 

“Oh divines,” Bellatrix said. “Fuck! Hermione, are you okay? I mean, obvious not, but are you--”

“There’s nothing wrong physically,” Hermione said, pulling Bellatrix closer. Bellatrix wrapped her arms around her little witch, still so much small even though there were two of them now. She kissed the top of Hermione’s head as her hand rubbed gentle circles into Hermione’s back. It seemed to work as her wife’s muscles slowly relaxed. Hermione sighed and looked up at her.

“What were you going to say?” she asked. Bellatrix bit her lip and swallowed hard.

“There’s two things, love,” Bellatrix said. “The Order has some spy besides Snape. They found out you’re staying here--”

“That doesn’t really--”

“And they know we planned to move into your mother’s childhood home.” Hermione paled considerably. Her knees buckled and Bellatrix caught her, moving to sit both of them on the sofa.

“How?” Hermione asked, her voice quiet, still in shock.

“I don’t know,” Bellatrix admitted bitterly. “And I don’t know who either.” Hermione shuddered and leaned into Bellatrix, her head resting on her shoulder.

“And the other thing?” her little witch asked. Bellatrix pressed a kiss to Hermione’s head.

“We found out when Potter’s leaving for the Order headquarters.”

“Oh,” Hermione said. There was a brief pause filled with nothing but silence and Bellatrix wondered if her little witch was still in shock. Hermione then slid from her shoulder, placing her head in Bellatrix’s lap facing up, the rest of her sprawling across the sofa. Bellatrix smiled and carded her hands through her wife’s hair.

“You’re really not bothered by that?” Bellatrix asked. Hermione shrugged.

“Not really. Tonks and Andy aren’t working with them anymore. Ginny and Luna just left. There are a few I wouldn’t want to kill, per se, but no one’s left who I actually care for. As for the danger, well,” she said smiling as she looked up at Bella’s eyes. “I’ll have your back.”

“What?” Bellatrix said, her eyes widening. “We know they’re targeting you and that they know you’re pregnant! Why on earth--”

“Better than having them gang up on me back here,” Hermione said, sitting up. 

“Yes, because those are our only two options,” Bellatrix replied sarcastically.

“What else is there?”

“You could go--”

“There’s someone spying for them,” Hermione said. “Someone in either your, my, or Narcissa’s household. No matter how much we try to keep it a secret, word spreads. So, until the Order’s gone, the safest place for me is by your side.” Bellatrix sighed deeply. Damn it, she was right. Not that Bellatrix would say it.

“Fine,” she said instead. “We’ll be flying though.” Hermione shrugged and Bellatrix furrowed her brows. “You hate flying.”

“No,” Hermione said. “I hate flying on broomsticks. Always make me feel nauseous.”

“I remember,” Bellatrix said in (mostly) false disgruntlement. “You threw up when I tried to show you a birds-eye view of the coastline.”

“That was really sweet of you,” Hermione said. “But we really should have waited until after the morning was over.”

“The sunrise--”

“Was gorgeous, I know. But I still was having morning sickness every day.”

“Okay, fine,” Bellatrix grumbled. “No more waking you up at five in the morning on a honeymoon and insisting we fly.” Hermione laughed and reached her arms around Bellatrix, pulling her closer. Hermione then leaned back, falling onto the couch and dragging Bellatrix on top of her.

“Aw, babe,” Hermione said with a pout, then a genuine smile. “I love your enthusiasm for so very many things. And watching your smile when I climbed onto your broom was worth the whole thing. Even if you keep mocking me with the memory. And no,” she added with a glare. “That wasn’t permission to do it again.” Bellatrix laughed and Hermione giggled under her, snuggling up close. Bellatrix felt her little witch sigh contentedly under her. She looked and saw Hermione’s eyes closed, her face resting, relaxed. She was beautiful when she was stressed, angry, in combat, or exhausted, but her wife was truly gorgeous when she was at peace. Bellatrix pressed a kiss to Hermione’s forehead. Her wife, her wife , gods, Bellatrix could spend an entire day being reminded Hermione was her wife and it would still be unbelievable.

Hermione mumbled under her, something Bellatrix couldn’t quite understand. She wasn’t quite sure if Hermione was asleep or not, so she gently switched their positions, letting Hermione lie on top of her, curled into her warmth.

“Hmm?” Hermione said, opening her eyes. She looked down at the couch, then up to Bella’s eyes.

“You were mumbling,” Bellatrix replied to the unspoken question. “Thought you might be asleep.”

“I really need to stop falling asleep so much,” Hermione said with a yawn. Bellatrix rolled her eyes.

“Love, you’re literally growing another human in your body right now. I’d be surprised if you weren’t tired.” Hermione opened her mouth, likely to disagree, but yawned widely instead.

“Maybe you’re right,” her little witch said with a shrug. Bellatrix smiled and leaned up, kissing Hermione briefly. Hermione wasn’t having that. She gripped Bella’s hair and pulled her closer, reinitiating her kiss, then deepening it. Their tongues twisted around each other until Hermione pulled away.

“There,” Hermione said with a glint in her eyes. “Now I can sleep.” Bellatrix growled and flopped her head onto the sofa cushion, mumbling something about teasing witches. Her false attitude disappeared completely when she felt Hermione’s body relax on top of hers. Her wife’s head was resting on her breasts, her cheek just having gone slack. Bellatrix smiled, taking in the sight of her little witch, her beloved wife, sleeping peacefully before joining her in the realm of dreams.

Chapter Text

Narcissa was slightly hunched over, her eyes running over the results of the diagnostic spells. She nodded twice before releasing the spell and straightening her back.

“Everything seems fine,” Madame Malfoy said, looking into her sister-in-law’s eyes. “With both you and the babe.” Hermione sighed, her body slumping in relief for a moment before she straightened up again.

“Now then,” she said, her voice ice cold and hard as steel. “How could someone have slipped Glimmershaw’s Solution into my gods-be-damned water?”

“The house elves,” Narcissa said. “They’re still bound by contracts, but elf magic--”

“Has ways of getting around that,” Hermione said with a sigh. She breathed for a moment before looking up at Narcissa.

“Tell me Cissy,” her sister-in-law said. “Does your husband still hold the house elves’ contracts?”

“Yes, this is his manor,” she said, her voice going cold as she shifted from loving sister-in-law to the pureblood ice queen. “Why do you ask?”

“I. . . Aren’t the Malfoys a Christian family?”

“What business of yours is the Malfoy family faith?”

“Cissy--” Hermione sighed. “The bible has rather particular things to say about same-sex marriages, pagan rituals, and women having power.”

“I am aware of what that tome has to say.”

“He wasn’t happy when I mentioned house elves.”

“None of us were.”

“True, but I took him down a peg, not anyone else. And everyone else later conceded the point. I took the position of honor--killing Dumbledore--from Draco.”

“Draco couldn’t have--” Narcissa hissed.

“I know that,” Hermione retorted. “It doesn’t mean that Lucius does.” She sighed again. “Look, he’s less important to the Dark Lord than he was in the last war. My wealth is nearly as large as his, and with Bella we have the Black family fortune as well. The failure at the ministry last year is being blamed on him. The sister-in-law he hates has married a teenager and the both of them are highly powerful and trusted. I was hoping the threat of my Cruciatus would keep him at bay, but is it at least possible he’s doing something stupid out of anger?” Narcissa froze, her lip quivering slightly. Hermione blinked. She hadn’t realized how hard this would be for Cissy. Her husband of more than twenty years might be behind an attempt to kill her sister’s wife and child. She was still certain Cissy didn’t love Lucius--the concept of someone loving the melencholy-prone bigoted dandy didn’t seem real--but one couldn’t coexist for so long, let alone raise a child together, without developing some feelings towards each other. Cissy certainly hadn’t been happy when Hermione had taken him aside for threats and warnings after killing Dumbledore. She’d been so hyped-up on revenge and adrenaline she’d forgotten about her more devious plans.

Hermione leaned forward, grabbing Cissy and pulling her into a deep hug. She refused to let her sister-in-law retreat behind her icy facade. Emotions weren’t the enemy, though it had taken Hermione quite some time to learn that lesson too. After a while Cissy sighed and Hermione (reluctantly) released her.

“Are you sure it’s Lucius?” she asked. Hermione sighed.

“He’s the only one I can think of,” she replied. “No one else has motive and means. Cissy,” she said gently, pulling Narcissa back towards her. “We’ll take care of you. I promise. No need to hide yourself, okay?”

“I’m fine,” Narcissa replied before extracting herself from Hermione’s arms. “You and Bella should move,” she said. “At the very least, your house-elves won’t be--” The blonde woman turned, walking steadily away.

“Cissy!” Hermione shouted. She slumped into her seat, knowing she would be unable to catch up with self-isolating sister-in-law.

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

“Bella!” Hermione cried out when her wife returned. She stood from the couch before flinging herself into the older witch’s arms. Bellatrix smile as she caught her wife, the other members of the raiding party rolling their eyes and moving around the couple, used to their displays of affection. “Bella,” she said again in a lower voice, her brows furrowed. “We--we need to talk.” Bellatrix went wide-eyed, suddenly looking away.

“Not like that,” Hermione said, sliding a hand down Bellatrix’s cheek. The older witch turned back as Hermione leaned forwards, catching her in a searing kiss. “I love you, Bella,” she said. Bellatrix felt her body relax, sliding into the warm embrace of her wife. They walked slowly through the manor to their room, basking in the other’s presence. With Dumbledore’s death there had been an increase in missions as the Death Eaters secured warehouses and suppliers. Between that and Hermione’s maneuverings to make Lucius’ position as head fundraiser redundant, they hadn’t spent much time together outside of meals and bed for the past month.

They entered their room leaning on each other. Bella closed the door while Hermione whipped out her wand, a chain of powerful wards flowing from it. Bellatrix raised an eyebrow at that, until Hermione turned towards her and opened her mouth.

“I think Lucius is the traitor.” Bellatrix’s jaw dropped. She blinked once, then twice. She closed her jaw and her eyes, then took in a deep breath. In one, two , Hermione thought.

Bellatrix’s eyes opened as her jaw set. Three.

“I’m going to kill him,” she said matter-of-factly.

“Bella--”

“I’m going to kill him,” she said again, growing louder. “That peacocked dandy thinks he can kill my wife? Thinks he can murder our child?! I’m going to gut him like a rotting fish!”

“Bella!” Her wife turned towards her, eyes blazing and Hermione swallowed hard.

“How long have you known?” she asked, stepping closer. “How long have you known it was Lucius? A week? A month? This is why you’ve been playing with the finances, isn’t it?”

“Be--”

“No,” she said firmly. “You don’t get to talk just yet. You made a plan without me. You decided to give that piece of shit extra chances to kill you. You decided I couldn’t be trusted about this. You decided doing this quietly meant more than your safety. More than our child’s life.” Hermione’s lip quivered, her head turning aside as tears ran down her face.

“You didn’t even think about it, did you?” Bellatrix spat.

“Bella,” Hermione said, her voice cracking. “Please, I--”

“Why?” Bellatrix asked, her voice soft. She tilted Hermione’s face towards her, forcing her wife to look her in her own moisture-filled eyes. “Why didn’t you tell me? Why did you decide secrecy mattered more than your life?”

“I--” Hermione said, her voice breaking before she could finish. “I--” Bellatrix sighed and turned around.

“Stay here,” she said, walking towards the door. “I’ll head over to Black Manor--”

“I’m not used to having people,” Hermione blurted out. Bellatrix turned back, looking her in the eye. “I--I’m not used to being important to people,” Hermione continued, her voice wavering. “You’re right, I didn’t think, I just assumed I had to do this alone because that’s always how I’ve had to do things and the idea of someone else caring about me and my safety is---I--” Hermione closed her eyes, biting her lip as she struggled to find the words she needed. She needed to say this. She needed Bellatrix to stay, she needed her to understand.

“I don’t know how to be in someone else’s life,” she finally said lamely, her gaze fixed firmly on the ground. She might be a fool and an idiot, but Hermione knew actually seeing Bellatrix, her wife, her witch, walk away from her would kill her.

Hermione gasped when two strong arms wrapped around her and the cloth of a black corseted dress blocked out her vision. She stood frozen for a moment, unable to believe her wife was still there. Gingerly, she placed her own arms around Bella. She felt a hand running through her curls the way only Bella would and slumped into her wife, sobbing and holding her close.

“Shhh,” Bella said, her voice gently cooing at her wife. “I love you too. We can talk in the morning,” she said, gently undressing her wife and herself. She sat on the bed and pulled Hermione into her, letting her wife’s head rest against her chest as she carded her hand through the little witch’s hair. Hermione let out a sniffling sigh, her arms wrapping around Bella, pulling the two witches closer.

“I don’t know what I did to deserve you,” Hermione whispered into her skin. Bellatrix smiled and pressed a kiss to her head.

“You were you,” she said. “Now go to sleep.”

Chapter Text

“Time to wake up.” Hermione groaned, rolling towards the husky voice in her ear and burying her head in her wife’s luscious curls. “Now, little witch.”

“Bella,” Hermione said, sitting up as the previous night flew back at her. She grasped at her love’s shoulders, holding onto her for dear life. Terrified her love might turn from her again, terrified they might--

“Shhh,” her love cooed, her hand carding through Hermione’s hair. “We’re together darling. Always.” Hermione nodded, her lips trembling as she forced her gaze upwards, meeting the silver eyes of her wife.

“I--I’m so sorry,” she said, tears filling her eyes. “Gods, Bella, I don’t--I should--H--” Bella shook her head, but Hermione could see the pain she’d caused, could feel it through their bond as it ate away at their sacred link.

“Bella,” Hermione said, her voice clearer though it still trembled. “I should have told you. I--I trust you, I do, I just--I’m not used to having people,” she finished in a small voice. “I won’t hide things from you again.”

“Promise?” Bella asked, her voice breaking slightly. Hermione looked up, meeting her love’s eyes once again.

“So I swear, so mote it be,” she said. Gold light flickered between them, binding Hermione’s magic to her oath. It had barely begun to dissipate before Bella grasped her little witch, pulling her head to her chest.

“We’re leaving today,” she finally said. “You, me, and Cissy.”

“Where?” Hermione asked, her voice small.

“Castle Black. What?” Bella asked, looking at Hermione’s raised eyebrows. “Did you think you were the only rich person in this marriage?”

 

* * * * * * * * * * *

 

“Castle Black!” Bella declared once Hermione was done retching. Pregnancy had made side-along apparating even more of a nightmare. Hermione looked up, gasping as she took in the magnificent building. It looked more a mansion than a castle, truth be told, but there was no doubting its magical protections. The building looked as if it had been hewn from a single, perfect block of stone. There were no hints of mortar, no breaks where the lines between blocks should have been. Even the columns in front showed no sign of separation from the roof and floor. Yet not for a moment did the building look in any way block-like. Rather, it was intricately carved, delicately patterned exactly as it should have been.

As they approached, it became clear the walls were filled with carvings, differing marks taking up each inch of stone.

“The wards,” Bellatrix whispered in her ear. “You can tell the age from the runes they used.” Hermione gasped, gaping as she stared at the mansion’s walls. She reached out, her hand tracing over the curving marks. What was now the eastern wing seemed to be oldest, engraved with the symbols and characters of the Dumnonii. They gave way to Greek and Latin as one came upon the extending curve. The middle was carved with Futhorc, the runes of the early Anglo-Saxons, though the columns were clearly a later addition, engraved with a mid-renaissance attempt at Greek and Latin. The western wing had been added just after the centre, covered largely in Futhorc before it gave way to Younger Futhark. The far west must have been added in the Celtic Revival of the 16th century, covered as it was in Ogham.

“Remarkable, isn’t it?” All Hermione could do was nod dumbly, staring at the walls as they glowed with power. “It would take a legion, each as strong as the Dark Lord, to get through these wards.” Hermione turned, her arms wrapping around her dark lover, pulling her into a tight embrace.

“Thank you,” she said in a soft voice.

“We will be safe here,” Bella said, pressing a kiss into Hermione’s head. “No matter what happens, we will be safe.”

Chapter Text

Castle Black was a truly an amazing place. Even after Cissy, Andromeda, Ted--a man who, despite their changing thoughts on blood purity, Bella and Cissy detested--and Nym had arrived it felt spacious and safe. It was a strange feeling for Hermione. She knew what safe felt like--she’d felt it every time Bella held her and on occasion when she was alone with Cissy--but she never imagined she could feel safe around so many people. Or that she could feel safe when alone. It was confusing, a thought she’d voiced to Bella and had echoed back to her.

The Black family’s vacation from hardship, like all good things, eventually came to an end.

“There’s no way I can talk you out of this?” Bella asked, staring at her wife as she dressed in black combat robes.

“Nope,” Hermione replied with a pop. “No going into danger without me.”

“But--”

“Bella,” Hermione said, turning and looking directly into her love’s eyes. “I have woven every shield possible into our robes. I have set aside a half-dozen contingencies into mine and I am carrying a portkey.”

“I know,” Bella said as she embraced her little witch, her loving --lovely, delectable-- wife.

“We’re going to be fine,” Hermione said, looking into her wife’s silver eyes, color shining through the unshed tears of anxiety. “We’re going to make it through this. All three of us.”

Not fair, Bellatrix thought as her wife pulled her hand towards her swelling belly. She felt their child (good gods, their child, her child, their unborn daughter!) through the combat robes as she bounced around the womb. She knows I can’t respond to that , Bellatrix thought.

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

“Great,” Hermione remarked bitterly, her thestral swooping around to chase after Alastor Moody. “Everyone’s Potter.”

“Not everyone,” Bella responded, flying next to her. A  bone-breaking curse flew from her wand, narrowly missing the talented ex-auror. “Just half of them.” Hermione growled, pushing her steed to move faster. She flew by the slower-moving broom.

Bombarda, she thought, her wand pointing just ahead of Moody’s broom. Her spell worked perfectly. The spell flew, hitting the side of the broom as it crossed the point. The explosion drowned out the sound of the snapping broomstick but not her cackle of glee as her opponents fell towards the earth.

“Hermione!” Bella shouted, calling her attention. A red light was flying towards her. Another spell, one from Potter (if it was Potter) yanked her saddle out from under her.

Shit, Hermione thought. She grasped her necklace, holding onto the silver chain raven as she fell.

“Toujours Pur!” she shouted as she fell. There was a moment where Hermione thought it wouldn’t work, where she continued to fall. Then a hook wrapped around her navel, yanking her through space before throwing her out onto the couch of her wife’s family home. Conjuring a bucket, she immediately emptied her stomach into it, then vanished it before washing her mouth of the taste.

“‘Mione?” a voice called. Shit. Hermione quickly began stripping out of her combat robes. They weren’t standard issue, but they were recognizable, even without the silver mask. Rolling them into a ball, she hastily threw the robes under the bed, hoping Tonks wouldn’t look for them.

“Mione!” the clumsy former auror called out, rushing to embrace her, nearly tripping over the carpet as she did so. Hermione poorly hid her snort of amusement as Tonks sheepishly righted herself. “Where were you?” Tonks asked. “I knew auntie Bella’d be out, but--”

“I--”

“You were with her, weren’t you.” Hermione didn’t say anything, her brain racing to find an acceptable answer that wasn’t a lie. She didn’t want to lie to her family. She’d always wanted a family, she damn well wouldn’t ruin it now that she finally had one. “I could understand going after the old man,” Tonks said, her hair changing from pink to red, growing darker as her rant continued. “But actually joining them? Are you insane? They would have killed you two years ago--hell, they bloody well tried!”

“Tonks--”

“No! You told me not to get involved, you got me out of the Order and the aurors, and now you’re joining the fucking Death Eaters?

“Tonks--”

“Oh, ‘Don’t pit family against family, Tonks’ your friends already tried to off my dad!”

“Tonks!” The former auror glared at Hermione. “It--It’s more complicated than that,” Hermione said.

“It’s not bloody complicated, are you with You-Know-Who or against him?”

“Against, obviously!” Hermione replied bitingly. “I got the Blacks and the Malfoys to free their house elves! I fought against Death Eaters as a bloody fifth-year!”

“Then why were you with them?!”

“Ever head of an inside operation?” Hermione snarked. “Or do they not mention that to aurors?”

“I--” Tonks began to say, but Hermione wasn’t paying attention. A wave of pain ran through her. A scream echoed through her brain.

“I have to go,” she said, turning on her heel and apparating away.

“Fucking hell,” Tonks commented to the empty room.

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

The room she arrived in was dark, as were all His meeting rooms. Her wife spasmed on the floor, a few dozen leering men watching as the Dark Lord punished his right hand. Hermione snarled, stepping forwards, her wand flying into her hand.

“Stop,” she said, voice fully of steel. The Dark Lord turned towards her.

“You dare question Lord Voldemort?” he hissed. “You dare--” Hermione didn’t bother replying. A bone-breaking curse flew from her wand, colliding into a quickly summoned shield. The death eaters gasped at her audacity.

“Love,” Bella said, her voice panicky.

“Go home,” Hermione interrupted, her eyes fixed on the Dark Lord. “I’ll be with you shortly.”

“Love--”

“Go!” Not waiting for a response, Hermione moved. Several spells flew from the end of her wand, each hitting another of the Dark Lord’s shields. She and stepped forwards, magic flying from her body and flowing through her wand. The Dark Lord responded, only to have his spells blocked in kind, deflected into the crowd of Death Eaters. He sneered, throwing more weight behind his curses, only to have Hermione do the same. Death Eaters stared as they watched the impossible, as a girl not even graduated held her own against their Lord.

Sectumsempra! ” the Dark Lord called, only to have the spell deflected, slamming into Macnair, one of the few who hadn’t moved to the edges of the room. Hermione’s eyes blazed as she strode forward, a flurry of spells putting the Dark Lord on his back foot as he retreated, her body glowing with power.

“You dare to punish my wife?” Hermione yelled. “You are nothing compared to her, and nothing to me!” A spell flew with each word, the final a bright purple that broke through the Dark Lord’s shield, knocking him to the ground. "You never learned to respect your betters,” she sneered, level her wand at the fallen lord. “Seems time someone corrected that.” The Dark Lord glared at her, summoning his wand as the Death Eaters looked on in awe and horror. “Crucio.”

Chapter Text

“You dare to punish my wife?” Hermione yelled. “You are nothing compared to her, and nothing to me!” A spell flew with each word, the final a bright purple that broke through the Dark Lord’s shield, knocking him to the ground. "You never learned to respect your betters,” she sneered, level her wand at the fallen lord. “Seems time someone corrected that.” The Dark Lord glared at her, summoning his wand as the Death Eaters looked on in awe and horror. “Crucio.”

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

Voldemort felt very little. It was a secret, a very well-kept one, known only to himself, but it had been true for years. Bit by bit as he had carved his soul in exchange for immortality his senses had been eaten away. Oh, he could still hear and see and touch, but they were so much duller than he remembered them being in his youth. Smells and tastes were gone entirely, even the foul rot off of Quirrel hadn’t been enough to activate his olfactory senses.

His existence as a wraith had been painful, but more in a frustrating sort of way. The last time he had truly felt anything (beyond frustration, minor headaches, and the occasional bout of joy after using many Unforgivables) was when the blasted boy had kicked him out of his body sixteen years ago. That had been painful, truly, horrendously painful, feeling his body shredding itself until only his damaged soul remained.

This was worse. His body was fine, more or less, but now it was that same damaged soul that was being ripped apart. Not killed, for Lord Voldemort could not be killed, not while he had his horcruxes (and none but him knew of that) but torn into tiny pieces reminiscent of the ticker-tape they had thrown over the soldiers after V-E day.

Voldemort did not know if he was screaming or not. He was unaware of what his body was doing, though he suspected it was writhing, as bodies subjected to the Cruciatus were wont to do. No, the only things he was aware of were his thoughts and the tremendous, fiery pain running through his soul. He shouldn’t have been able to even know his thoughts, but Lord Voldemort had battled through pain before. He had numbed himself to it before, and he did so now, isolating his mind into a small place, untouched by the curse running through him. He could not fully quiet the pain of his soul, but he could dampen it enough to think. Of course, in doing this he had surrendered control of his body, but it was a necessary sacrifice. One that would be over once the girl had left.

He had not expected this. He had always known Bellatrix preferred women, so it was hardly surprising that once Rodolphus was dead she had married one. Given how little she liked her former husband (it was only his word and the might of the aging Lord Lestrange that had stayed her wand) it wasn’t too surprising she would focus on the young woman who had killed Rod. Granted, that they wed so quickly was surprising, but Bellatrix was nothing if not seductive and impulsive. Most teenagers were too, he recalled. Any concerns he had about the girl’s loyalty were washed away when she asked if she could kill Dumbledore. The battle lines were clear, after all. It was him and his Death Eaters against Dumbledore, Potter, and the Order of the Phoenix. Bellatrix’s wife sided with him, bringing with her the support of a variety of Irish and Welsh families and wealth rivaling even the Blacks and Malfoys.

That he had been wrong was a bitter realization. Life was more complicated than Voldemort against Potter, than Light against Dark. He should have known this. He had used the factionalism natural to politics to grow his movement, both before his first uprising and for a year after his re-corporealization. He had then ignored it, assuming that there would once more be bystanders, Death Eaters, and the Phoenix people with the Ministry hovering somewhere between the three.

He had been wrong on so many levels. He had known Hermione was powerful, but not to this extent. There were few records of such power, but bar one set of people it had always been obvious from birth. This Hermione, however, had not been such a powerhouse before hand. Smart and damaged, yes, but not possessing the raw magical prowess she was using now. Prowess that could only be gained through rituals so dangerous and dark not even he had used them or soul bonds. The very idea of Soul Bonds or Soul Mates made Voldemort want to vomit. It was as if Dumbledore was taunting him from beyond the grave, the ‘power of love’ reducing him to a small bubble of thought within a pain-wracked body and a shredding soul. That Dumbledore had been killed by love (of family) made up for that, but only a little.

Suddenly the pain stopped. Or rather, it ceased being added. The shreds of his soul and nerves running through his body were still crying out in agony, pain bouncing off of them, but no new pain was coming from outside his body. She had gone.

Voldemort moved his consciousness from outside his soul back into his body, just in time to hear the faint crack of skilled apparation. Very skilled, if she had broken through the wards on her way in and out.

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

“Well,” Hermione said as she arrived at Castle Black. She was instantly surrounded by the Black women, and quickly absorbed into Bella’s embrace.

“Why?” her wife asked, and Hermione glared at her.

“I’m not letting him torture my wife!” she replied, calming slightly when Bella recoiled from her. “Bella,” she said softly. “If I’m worth moving out of Malfoy Manor, you’re worth pissing off the Dark Lord.”

“What happened?” Narcissa asked, interrupting them. “Nymphad--”

Don’t call me Nymphadora!

“--ora said you just apparated,” Cissa continued, ignoring her niece.

“He was torturing Bella,” Hermione said. “I felt it.”

“You felt it?” Bella asked, suddenly doubling back in worry. “How strongly? Is the ba--”

“It was a mental aftershock love,” Hermione said gently. “Just enough to let me know you were in trouble. Anyways,” she continued, turning back to her family. “He was torturing her. I stopped it.”

“Wha--you stopped the Dark Lord?” Narcissa said incredulously.

“You should have seen their faces,” Hermione smirked. “Macnair was so surprised her forgot how to move. I deflected the Dark Lord’s curse into him.”

“So he’s dead,” Andy dryly remarked.

“Can’t say I’ll miss him,” Bella muttered. “What happened next?”

“I borrowed your specialty,” Hermione said, a sweet smile on her face.

“You--” Bella began. “You put the Dark Lord , the man currently running magical Britain, under the Cruciatus?

“Yes.” Bellatrix threw back her head and laughed, a full-throated thing that turned into a gleeful cackle partway through.

“Morgan I love you,” she said, sweeping Hermione up into her arms and spinning them around.

“Bella!” Hermione protested, undermined by her giggles and silenced when Bella pressed their lips together.

“If I and the real world can distract you for a minute,” Narcissa interrupted, thoroughly ignoring Bella’s glare. “You’ve made the first move. We need to contact people now to have any chance at persuading them.” Bella sighed and set her wife down.

“Fine,” she grumbled. “Letters first, sex later.”

Chapter Text

Much to Hermione’s surprise, there were a great number of people interested in abandoning the Dark Lord. Then again, perhaps she should have expected it. He had never treated his followers well, his cause cloaked in fear rather than love. Fear that was heavily undermined after he was beaten by a pregnant nineteen-year-old.

Granted, the Dark Lord’s following--Death Eaters, thugs, Fenrir Greyback’s werewolves, and others--was still a potent and terrifying organization. There were more than a thousand involved, all told, and that number would only grow once the Ministry fell.

If the Ministry fell.

The untold growth potential for the Dark Lord after the Ministry’s collapse was the reason Hermione was sipping tea in a backroom of one of the more upscale restaurants in Diagon Alley. Cissy was seated next to her, and Andy next to her. Bella, much to Hermione’s sorrow, was not present, as that would only antagonize the other guests--Minister Rufus Scrimgeour, DMLE Head (and imperius victim) Pius Thicknesse, and Senior Auror Kingsley Shacklebolt, a member of the Fiery Bird Order. 

All of whom were struggling to get their heads around what Hermione was telling them.

“So,” the Minister said, his voice numb. “You abandoned You-Know-Who. For reasons you won’t disclose. You’re not willing to take Veritaserum. You admit to killing Albus Dumbledore. You admit the involvement of Bellatrix Black in numerous crime, some of which she hadn’t even been charged with. You admit both of you were involved in an illegal assault on Harry Potter, amongst others, during which you effectively killed Alastor Moody. You,” he said, turning towards Narcissa. “Admit to aiding, abetting, and for a time hosting Death Eaters and You-Know-Who. You all admit to various prohibited Dark rituals. And you want universal pardons?

“In exchange for valuable information, yes,” Hermione said. “We can start with a show of good faith. Department Head Thicknesse is under the Imperius Curse, placed by Corban Yaxley.” There was a brief moment of silence as both Minister Scrimgeour and Auror Shacklebolt turned towards their companion, who glared at Hermione. Thicknesse then went for his wand, but was bound to the chair before he could reach it.

“Minister, may--”

“Yes.” Shacklebolt nodded, gulping slightly, and turned his wand towards Thicknesse. Bar force of will, there were few ways of disrupting an Imperius Curse, and even fewer that could be done on the victim’s end. “ Imperio .” Thicknesse went slack for a moment, his eyes glazing over. Then Shacklebolt released the curse and their light returned, sharper than they had been for months.

“Oh, that slimy bastard!” Thicknesse spat. “I’ll kill him--would you get these damn things off me?” With a flick of her hand, Hermione vanished the ropes, leaving Thicknesse to caress his wrists.

“Pius?” Scrimgeour asked.

“Yaxley,” Thicknesse spat. “Bastard. They wanted me as their figurehead Minister. Rowle was with him.”

“Two aurors?” Shacklebolt asked in horror.

“Oh, far more than two,” Hermione said. “The rest of the information, however, comes after the pardons.”

“You would hold the country hostage?” Shacklebolt asked incredulously.

“The Ministry, not the country,” Hermione replied. “We don’t really need the Ministry to win, though it would be much easier. We’ll also need some political concessions regarding the Celtic Houses.”

“What my sister-in-law means,” Narcissa said, glaring at Hermione’s blatant language. “Is that something cannot be got for nothing, and that we wish to work with the Ministry to expedite the resolution of this conflict.”

“And who is this ‘we’ exactly?” Scrimgeour asked.

“The Black and the MacEcrae families, of course,” Hermione began. “Also the MacBrian, the Walsh, the MacEochaidh,  the Munstra, the Ulster, the Muriedaig, the Murphy, the Domnaill, the Attacotti, the Carrow, the Ross, the Owain, the Aberffraw, and the Mathrafal. Those are just the nobility, there are a number of other families, mostly Welsh and Irish with some Cornish, Kentish, and Scottish, who are also interested. In exchange for full pardons for all our members and full representation in the Wizengamot for all the relevant families, we will hand over information on every Death Eater, sympathiser, and Imperius victim in the Ministry.”

“Aren’t you forgetting something?” Andromeda asked.

“Hm?” Hermione asked, her gaze confused until Andy gestured towards their goblets. “Oh. Right. We have an item we believe is linked to the Dark Lord’s immortality, we can hand that over for research and destruction.”

“We’ll need to discuss this with our law-wizards,” Scrimgeour started.

“Almost half of whom support the Dark Lord,” Hermione interjected. “No, this is done here and now, before he can take over. You have the ability under the Crisis Powers section. Agree or we’ll carve our own path.” There was a brief silence, where no doubt Cissy was tempted to glare at Hermione but refrained for the sake of unity.

“Fine,” Scrimgeour spat. “As Minister of Magic, I, Rufus Janus Scrimgeour, officially pardon all members of the coalition led by the Madames Black, including themselves, and instate to the Wizengamot as full voting members all relevant Celtic Houses.” A golden light emerged around them, tightening not only their magic, but that of the entire Ministry and Wizengamot as well. “Now,” Scrimgeour said, shifting in his seat. “Tell us what you know.”

Chapter Text

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“You did what? ” Kingsley Shacklebolt bit back a sigh. As expected, the Ministry’s deal with the Black Coalition did not go over well with the Order of the Phoenix. Especially after the younger Madame Black confirmed that she was the one who killed Mad-Eye.

“We didn’t have much of a choice,” Kingsley sighed. “They know everything . Thicknesse hadn’t turned, he was Imperiused, if we--”

“How do you think they know everything?” Ronald Weasley demanded, his face nearly red as his hair. “They’re God-damned monsters!”

“Ronald!” Molly interjected, but her son just kept going.

“She tortured Dumbledore!” Ronald yelled. “She turned my sister into a dyke! And don’t get me started on that Black bint!”

“Ronald--” Arthur tried.

“No!” Ronald shouted. “We’re not making deals with them!”

“Much as I disapprove of young Ronald’s language, he does have a point,” Minerva said. “How can you be sure their information is accurate? Even if they are telling the truth, what is to keep them from turning against us the moment You-Know-Who is no longer a threat?”

“Power,” Elphias Doge said. “They get too much of it from this agreement. Far too much. It will let the Dark erase half the gains we’ve made under Dumbledore.”

“But it will keep them loyal,” Kingsley sighed. “Believe me, I don’t like this either.”

“Then why are you going along with it?” Hestia Jones asked.

“Because I don’t see another option,” Kingsley said.

“Dumbledore--” Harry started.

“I know Dumbledore trusted you to kill You-Know-Who,” Kingsley said.

“Then why don’t--”

“Because even if you kill him soon, a Death-Eater run Ministry will kill thousands of muggles, muggleborns, and part-creatures,” Arthur sighed, rubbing his temples. “I don’t like this deal, but Kingsley is right. Either we put up with some darker, more pagan families in the Wizengamot or You-Know-Who starts his genocide.”

“She killed Dumbledore!”

“We know, Molly,” Remus said. “And there’s not a part of me that doesn’t want to get her back. But revenge isn’t what Dumbledore would have wanted. He’d want us to put aside the past--not forget about it,” he hastily added upon seeing Molly’s infamous glare. “But take care of the living. Kingsley and Arthur are right. Much as we want her dead, our revenge doesn’t matter as much as thousands of lives. Besides,” he added with a hint of mirth. “We let Severus in here and he was a Death Eater nearly as long as Bellatrix.”

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

Ginny Weasley rolled her shoulders again, desperately trying to relax. It wasn’t working. Even Luna’s hand in hers wasn’t doing much. Even knowing she was disguised she couldn’t keep her leg from jittering. Not that she wanted to be anywhere else. There was no way she’d be missing her big brother’s wedding.

The Delacours had picked her and Luna up at the train station in Rouen. Together they’d taken a portkey to the Burrow. Thanks to the magic of polyjuice, she and Luna were going as cousins from the Delacour side of the family. Even polyjuice couldn’t fake that veela pull, it seemed. Not that Ginny needed it. Her Luna was perfect just the way she was.

Looking around the tented area, Ginny took a sharp breath, her hand clenching down on Luna’s. Her girlfriend turned towards her, her polyjuiced eyes still showing that same loving concern.

“We’ll be okay,” Luna said, rubbing circles into the back of her palm. “They don’t know we’re here.” Ginny nodded slightly, forcing herself to breathe out.

“I know,” Ginny said. “I’m just--I don’t want to lose you.”

“You won’t,” Luna promised, her voice uncharacteristically hard. Ginny nodded, biting her lip. She was about to lean into her girlfriend when Bill walked out. He looked brilliant in his sharp-cut robes, the scars on his face doing nothing to detract from his image. He still had his dragon-tooth earring in, Merlin how mum must have fought against that.

Gabrielle walked out next, then an actual Delacour cousin, taking their place opposite Charlie at the altar. The cousin spread flower petals as she went.

Fleur emerged next. She was truly radiant that day, her allure pulling nearly every eye to her, accentuated by the brilliant white lace of her wedding dress, but she had eyes just for one. She kept her eyes firmly on Bill as she neared the altar, Bill’s not moving from her the whole time. As she reached the altar, she took his hand as he helped her up, the two of them staring at each other until the officiator coughed. Bill gave a sheepish grin.

“William Arthur Weasley,” the old wizard said. “Do you take this woman as your wife?”

“I, William Arthur Weasley, do take Fleur Isabelle Delacour as my wife,” Bill said. “For better or worse, in good times and bad, in sickness and in health, in poverty as in wealth. Her joys are my joys, her sorrows my sorrows. Her success is my success, her troubles my troubles. By will, by blood, by magic, so I declare.” Finishing the vows, Bill picked up an athame from the altar, drawing a line across his palm before placing it back down.

“Fleur Isabelle Delacour,” the old wizard said. “Do you take this man as your husband?”

“I, Fleur Isabelle Delacour, do take William Arthur Weasley as my husband,” Fleur said. “For better or worse, in good times and bad, in sickness and in health, in poverty as in wealth. His joys are my joys, his sorrows my sorrows. His success is my success, his troubles my troubles. By will, by blood, by magic, so I declare.” Fleur then picked up another athame, slicing it across her palm and putting it back on the altar. Stepping forwards, they clasped their bleeding hands to the other’s forearm.

“Let these two hearts beat as one,” they said in unison. “Let us succeed, let us fail. Let us climb, let us fall. Let us laugh and weep, let us whisper and scream, let us cry and kiss. Let us live, let us die. Let us experience whatever life sends our way, but let us do so together.” A haze of golden light sprung from their clasped arms, moving outwards. A faint haze glowed in a sphere around them. At the center thin rays thickened, binding themselves together around their arms, twisting themselves into a spiral pattern that seemed to brand itself on their arms. The light flashed brighter for a moment, then disappeared as if sucked into the newlyweds. Around their arms were light spiral markings, each holding the match for the other.

“As blessed by magic, let this marriage be blessed by the state,” the old wizard said. “By the eyes of the world, you are wed. Congratulations.”

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

“Bella!” Hermione cried, her hips rolling forward involuntarily. She felt her wife chuckle against her, drawing another moan from Hermione. “Be--Gods above, keep doing that!” Hermione called. Bellatrix had never wanted to follow an order more. Flicking her tongue up, she kept licking her way through her little witch’s folds, her hands gripping Hermione’s thighs to keep her there as she wiggled about. With another scream Hermione came. Her legs feeling like jelly, she rolled off her drenched wife, collapsing onto her back.

Hermione smiled, her hands caressing the soft sheets of their bed. She paused for a moment, catching her breath and playing with her wife’s hair.

“Right,” Hermione said, sitting up. “Get over here.” Bella cocked an eyebrow but said nothing, doing as her wife asked. Without so much as a warning, Hermione dove into her wife’s pussy. Bellatrix moaned as she felt her clit emerging from its hood.

“And you call me insatiable,” Bella said, looking down at her little witch.

“You are insatiable,” Hermione said, looking up. “At least I have an excuse. Now, are you going to just sit there on my face or will you hurry up and finger me?”

“So demanding!” Bella mock-groused, a smile playing on her lips.

“Bella. . .”

“What’s the word?”

“Please! Sweet Circe Bella, will you please finger me?”

“I suppose that’ll count,” Bellatrix replied with a smirk, her hands lowering behind her. As she touched her wife’s folds, her little witch let out a moan that sent shivers straight to her core. “Just like that, little witch,” Bella breathed.

Chapter Text

Bellatrix was reading a book, her little witch curled up beside her with her head on Bella’s lap, when a silver European Wildcat entered the room.

“It has begun,” Andy’s voice rang out. “We are prepared, but more are arriving. We could use your assistance.”

“Hm?” Hermione asked, her voice laden with sleep. “What was that?”

“Andy sent a message,” Bellatrix said, kissing her wife’s head. “The Ministry’s under attack.”

“You need to get going then,” Hermione said, sitting upright. “Uf. Move too fast. Give me a second. Right,” she said, turning towards Bellatrix. “Your battle robes should be in the closet. Remember your portkeys, and don’t forget to shield.”

“I know love,” Bellatrix said with a soft chuckle. “I’ve been doing this for a while.”

“I know,” Hermione said quietly. “But I won’t be with you this time. Just--be safe, okay? Our child deserves both her parents.”

“I’ll be safe,” Bella promised, kissing her wife. “Now, I really must be leaving.”

“Goddesses go with you,” Hermione whispered at her wife’s back.

“You’re not going?”

“Merlin!” Hermione shouted at the sudden noise. Narcissa stifled a grin. Or tried to. Hermione still knew it was there. “Are you trying to kill me?”

“I’ve been here for an hour,” Cissy said dryly. Hermione glared at her. “I’ll ask again. You’re not going with her?”

“I wish,” Hermione grumbled. “I’ve been clumsier than your niece lately.” Narcissa looked over her sister-in-law. Her bump was certainly growing, much larger than it had been a month ago. Her skin was darkening too.

“You are getting along there,” Narcissa finally said. “Clumsiness is only natural at this stage.”

“I know,” Hermione said. “I just wish I could be there with her. The waiting is horrid.”

“I’m aware,” Narcissa said dryly.

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

Bellatrix arrived to the sounds of explosions. Though the Ministry had closed itself to apparation, those with enough power could still muscle their way through. To the atrium at least, elsewhere was pushing it, even for her.

Another explosion sounded, and Bellatrix turned in time to see the gold head of the wizard statue flying across the room before hitting the marble floor with a loud thunk. Turning towards the dark-robed wizard who’d sent it flying, Bellatrix let loose with the first spell that came to mind.

Bombarda! ” The red-lit spell soared towards her target, crashing into the unsuspecting man’s silver mask. The man screamed as the mask exploded, sending shards into his face.

Avada Kedavra! ” Bellatrix heard someone shout. Instinctively she dodged to the side, turning towards the voice to see Dolohov’s snarling face.

“Trying to climb the ranks Dolly?” Bellatrix asked, voice saccharine.

Avad-- ” the Russian wizard began, but Bellatrix was already moving. She ducked under the green spell, rolling to the side. Popping back up she sent a bone-breaking hex at the man. Her spell was deflected by Dolohov’s shield, but Bellatrix was just getting started. She followed up with a piercing hex, a cutting curse, and finally an overpowered confringo that shattered Dolohov’s shield. The man slid backwards, robes scorched but otherwise fine, his shield having taken the brunt of the spell. Bellatrix opened her mouth to cast again, but she was beaten to the punch. A flash of light slid across Dolohov’s neck. A moment later his body crumbled to the ground, head rolling away.

“Nice one Andy!” Bellatrix shouted.

“Watch your back!” her sister responded. Bellatrix turned, just in time to see a cutting curse flying her way. She dodged, but not fast enough. The spell cut through the edge of her robes. It was a glancing blow, one that didn’t even break through the robes’ enchantments, but Bellatrix knew her little witch would give her hell for it. Which was more than fair. Had that been a Killing Curse, Bellatrix could well be dead.

Turning towards the masked man who’d sent the curse her way Bellatrix responded in kind. A series of overpowered spells flew towards him. The first, a cutting curse, splashed harmlessly against the man’s shield. The second, a bombarda , broke through the shield, knocking the man back. The third, a confringo , landed on the man’s chest, ripping through his ribcage. The shattered bones must have broken into the man’s heart, for blood burst from the wound even as he flew through the air.

Sensing a lull, Bellatrix surveyed the scene around her. Red-robed aurors and normally-dressed Ministry workers were going wand-to-wand with a veritable horde of black-clad Death Eaters. Even so, they were winning.

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

Andromeda turned on her heel, another spell flying from the end of her wand, colliding with another Death Eater, killing another one of the pureblood idiots her parents had wanted her to wed. There was a visceral satisfaction in killing the men who’d tried to buy her, even if that was decades ago.

Andromeda spotted her daughter, clad in the same red robes as the rest of the aurors. Much as she might wish otherwise, her daughter was an auror. Now that the family had fully committed to a side, little Nymphadora had eagerly returned to her job and the front lines.

Well, maybe not so little anymore , Andromeda thought, watching as a red-tinged spell flew from her daughter’s wand. It hit a Death Eater, slicing through his robe with ease and cutting off his wand arm mid-bicep. She’s grown up now , Andy thought with pride, turning to deflect a bone-breaker sent her way. Her shield hummed into existence, sending the spell back to its caster. The heavy-set Death Eater moved too slow, the spell deflected upwards, crashing into his face.

The attack, while not unexpected, had come sooner than they’d thought. The purges had begun only the day before, and then only at the highest levels. They had hoped to keep the operation secret for a while longer, but it was not to be. You-Know-Who must have found out somehow. The Death Eaters had arrived just as they began interrogating the aurors. Fortunately everyone had been on high alert.

Turning to her left, Andromeda ducked under a spell, then slid past another. Aunt Walburga may have burned her off the family tapestry, but the Black Family Training was still ingrained in her. Two spells flew from her wand, the first breaking the fool’s shield, the second a piercing hex. The piercing hex was perfectly aimed if she did say so herself, slipping between the man’s ribs and into his heart.

An eerie hum sounded to her right. Turning, Andromeda watched in horror as a black cloud, radiating malevolence, seeped into the atrium. It coalesced, forming something with a humanoid shape. The figure flicked his right arm out, and the darkness followed his command. It flew forward, pushing itself through the Head Auror’s chest. The man gasped, dropping his wand. The magic was so dark it made its way through his veins, decaying his body from the inside out until he collapsed into a pile of dust.

“Behold!” the figure cried, the darkness around him beginning to clear. “The power of Lord Voldemort! Surrender now, and I may show mercy.” There was a pause in the crowd, and for a moment it seemed that many were considering his offer.

“No,” a proud, aristocratic voice said. “No, he won’t. If he doesn’t show mercy to his closest allies, he certainly won’t show it to us.”

Bellatrix ,” You-Know-Who snarled. “Perhaps a demonstration is in order. Let it be know how Lord Voldemort deals with traitors.” Without so much as a warning, he turned, wand flying out along with a black tendril eminanting dark power. Bellatrix merely laughed, conjuring a silver shield before her. The tendril bounced from the shield, recoiling quickly as the shield burst into flames.

“I’m surprised you came here,” Bellatrix said, ducking under a Blasting Curse. With a flick of her wand a whip of flame came from it. As it neared You-Know-Who the black tendrils rose to meet it, smothering the flames before they could reach him. “After my wife dealt you such a humiliating defeat.” You-Know-Who snarled, conjuring a field of arrows and sending them towards Bellatrix, who turned them aside with a flick of her wand.

“Is it any more surprising than you?” You-Know-Who asked in a sibilant tone. “My most loyal Bella, turned traitor. Do you truly believe they will let you live once you’ve done their dirty work?” he asked, a barrage of colored lights flying towards her. Bellatrix ducked under a few before summoning part of the Atrium’s statuary to block the rest.

“See the truth,” You-Know-Who hissed. “See what they are. Remember who you are.”

“Fuck you,” Bellatrix spat. Flicking her wand, she banished the damaged statue. The massive centaur bounced off You-Know-Who’s protego .

“Has consorting with the light made you so weak Bella?” You-Know-Who crowed. “Have you truly fallen--”

Bombarda! ” Bellatrix roared. You-Know-Who summoned a shield, but the spell was not aimed for him. Instead it plowed into the fallen statue and the marble floor around him. The shield mitigated most of the blow, but he was still knocked a few feet back. “ Draconifors omnis! ” All around his feet, the shards of marble and gold twisted and grew, forming claws and scaled backs. As one they spread their wings, hovering in the air.

Oppongo! ” Bellatrix cried. The hovering, miniature dragons roared, then charged. The scaled marble and gold being rushed into You-Know-Who’s summoned shield. Dozens shattered or disintegrated as they tried to force their way through, but even the Dark Lord’s strength couldn’t hold against the hundreds of transfigured dragons. Dropping his shield, You-Know-Who summoned fire and flame against the dragons, spat forth every blasting hex in his arsenal, and yet it was still not enough. His robes aflame, his chest and face covered with scratches and deeper cuts from the dragons, he was forced back.

Avada Kedavra, ” Bellatrix said. Quiet though she may have been, the Dark Lord still heard her. Turning towards his former lieutenant in shock and horror, he had only a split second to think before the spell would have arrived. He had not forgotten the pain involved when his body had burned sixteen years ago. Turning on his heel, he apparated away, but not before the dragons got in a few last blows.

Chapter Text

“You’re back!” Hermione cried, rushing her wife. Bella let out an oof as she caught her little witch. Hermione pressed her lips against her wife’s, kissing her deeply, inhaling the scent of spellfire, sweat, battle, and Bella .

“It’s good to see you too, little witch,” Bella smiled. “How has our little one been treating you?” she asked, kneeling to rub her hand over her wife’s belly.

“Been treating me to internal bruises,” Hermione groused. She was unable to without her smile though. Bellatrix’s eyes widened and her smile grew as their child kicked against her hand. How any could condemn her Hermione knew not. Her wife had done many things, yes, but she was still the woman who smiled every time their child kicked, regardless of how many times she’d felt it already.

“Na borth ahwer,” Bellatrix whispered, the Cornish wrapping easily around her tongue. “Dha mamm kara che hwath.”

“I do, little one,” Hermione said softly. “I will always love you. We both will.”

“That we will,” Bellatrix agreed, pressing a kiss to Hermione’s rounded belly. “That we will.”

“All is well at the Ministry?” Hermione asked as Bella stood.

“It is.” Bella smirked. “I ran him off with a flock on miniature dragons.”

“You’ll have to show me the memory, love.”

“Eagerly,” Bella replied, sweeping her wife into her arms. Hermione squeaked at the sudden move, but wrapped her arms around Bella’s neck nonetheless. “I think it was one of my finest moments.”

“Not as fine as this one,” Hermione replied, leaning up to kiss her wife. Bellatrix smiled down at her, kissing her soundly. Hermione’s arms tightened around her neck as the two kissed, Bella’s tongue slipping into Hermione’s mouth. Her hands squeezed at Hermione’s rear, causing her young wife to moan into her mouth. Shifting her weight, Bellatrix took them up the stairs, refusing the break off the embrace even after stumbling around a few times. Hermione was equally reluctant to let go, her kisses making their way down Bella’s neck, leaving a trail of marks as she went.

Depositing her wife on the bed, Bella turned to shut the door. In her moment of inattention, Hermione climbed off the bed, padding over to her wife and wrapping her arms around her. Her hands inched up Bella’s body, caressing her breasts through her corseted dress. Bella gave a stifled moan, her body arching instinctively towards the touch.

“Let go darling,” Hermione whispered. “You,” she kissed Bella’s neck. “Have done. A great. Job. Protecting. Us.” A kiss punctuated each pause, hands gently undoing the stays of Bella’s dress until it pooled down to the floor. Twirling her wife around to face her, Hermione offered a sweet smile. “Let me show you a proper thanks.”

Bellatrix moaned as Hermione kissed her way down her body, moving from her neck to her breasts. She teased around the soft skin, sucking and biting, leaving her mark across Bella’s flesh before consenting to touch her sensitive nipples. Bellatrix keened as Hermione held her nipple between her teeth, gently pulling back. Hands played around her inner thighs, teasing closer and closer to her needy folds, never quite touching them.

They fell onto the bed, Bellatrix on her back, Hermione on her Bella. Hermione’s mouth trailed down Bella’s flesh. Her hands caressed inner thighs, pulling her wife’s legs further apart as she neared the apex of Bella’s thighs. Looking up, Hermione offered her wife a cheshire grin before diving in. Her tongue lapped at the sopping folds, drawing a deep moan from her wife as Bella’s head flopped against their soft bed. Her tongue delved further, mouth suckling on her wife’s secretions. Hermione moaned at the familiar taste, sending vibrations into her wife, drawing forth another groan of pleasure. Her hands gripped onto Bella’s arse as she delved in further, her tongue eagerly hounding every inch of her wife’s pleasure. A hand slipped free of Bella’s arse, sliding up and over to her clit. Hermione squeezed the sudden nub. The sudden stimulation proved too much for her battle-stimulated wife. Bellatrix jackknifed as she came with a low moan.

Hermione climbed up the bed, flopping down next to her wife. Bellatrix rolled over, pressed her lips against her little witch’s in a furious passion. She could taste herself on her love’s lips and pressed further, driving her witch’s head into their pillows as she moved to straddle her wife.

“Bella,” Hermione said as her wife climbed onto her. “Bel--Bella!”

“What is it darling?” Bellatrix asked, growling out the question. Her hands were cupping her wife’s breasts, growing to accommodate their coming child.

“I--not now.” Bellatrix sighed, rolling off her wife. “Trust me, there’s nothing I’d rather do,” Hermione said. “Unfortunately, our little one seems to disagree.”

“Kicking up a fuss?” Bella asked, her eyes smiling. Sliding down, she pressed a kiss to Hermione’s growing belly. “Can you give your mother a break, little one?” Bella laughed as she felt a kick against her lips. “I think that’s a no, sorry darling,” she laughed.

“Yeah, yeah, laugh it up,” her wife grumbled. “Keep going and you’ll carry the next one.”

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

A bang of the gavel attracted everyone’s attention. The trials had been gaining steam over the past few days. They’d started easy, beginning with those ministry employees caught red-handed assisting You-Know-Who’s attempted coup. Today was the first time they’d be leaving the easy pickings. Elphias truly hoped they’d be able to keep their momentum.

“Presiding over the case, DMLE Head Pius Thicknesse,” the court scribe announced. “Bailiff, bring in the defendant.” The grim auror nodded, exiting the doors. Moments later he returned, a toad-like woman clad in pink held between two aurors.

“I am the Undersecretary of the Minister!” Umbridge shrieked. “You cannot do this!”

“Yes, we can,” Scrimgeor interrupted, a fierce scowl taking over his brow.

“Madame Umbridge,” the court scribe announced. “You are accused of Owning a Dark Artifact, Aiding and Abetting violations of the Natural Laws, and Conspiring to Overthrow the Ministry. How do you plead?”

“You can’t do this!” Umbridge yelled.

“How do you plead?” the scribe repeated.

“Not guilty, of course!” Umbridge snarled. “My entire life has been devoted to the Ministry, how could you think I would ever conspire against it?”

“Madame Umbridge,” Thicknesse interrupted. “Do you own a large, golden locket with an S engraved on it?”

“Yes, it’s a Selwyn--”

“Where is this locket?” Thicknesse demanded.

“I’m wearing it!” Umbridge exclaimed.

“Bailiff, retrieve the locket.” Umbridge shrieked in outrage as the grim aurors forcibly yanked the locked free of her. The metal was cold and clammy, clinging to Umbridge’s skin as if trying to burrow through her to escape.

“Chief Unspeakable,” Thicknesse called. “Can you identity this artifact?”

“Easily,” the grey-cloaked individual announced, looking it over. “This is the locket of Salazar Slytherin. It is also,” he continued over the gasp from the court. “A horcrux.” A roar from the audience and the Wizengamot both drowned out anything else he could say. Sitting high in the Wizengamot, Hermione grinned victoriously at her wife.

“I told you it’d be fine,” she whispered. Bellatrix rolled her eyes.

“We could have done it on our own,” she grumbled.

“Yes,” Hermione agreed. “But why risk ourselves?”

“You consider that ,” Bellatrix sneared, nodding towards the pink toad. “A risk?”

“Of course not,” Hermione scoffed. “The horcrux though, that I consider a risk.” Bellatrix grumbled under her breath, but she knew her wife was correct. Any part of Riddle was dangerous, and with her due date nearing, her little witch was becoming increasingly risk-averse and anxious. Perhaps even paranoid, not that Bellatrix would ever mention that to her fact. She’d nearly screamed at Bellatrix for going to Diagon alone. Rather ironic considering it was her present Bellatrix had been shopping for.

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

Hermione woke up with a moan on her lips. Forcing herself up so she could see over her growing bump, Hermione let out another moan as she took in the sight. Her wife, the infamous Bellatrix Black, smirking up at her from between her thighs. Before Hermione could so much as force a coherent thought into her brain Bella was diving back down and Hermione willing let herself fall into the pleasure.

“Happy anniversary darling,” Bellatrix said, wiping her chin as she climbed back into their bed.

“Half a year,” Hermione stated with a smile, happily falling into her wife’s embrace. “Three more months and this little monster can join us.”

“Monster?” Bella asked in mock outrage. “How can you call our darling daughter such a name?”

“When she’s pressing down on my bladder?” Hermione asked. “Easily.” Bella laughed, a far cry from her battlefield cackles. Hermione smiled as she watched her wife. She couldn’t wait for the war to end, for every morning to be this calm.

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

At her wife’s insistence, Bellatrix reluctantly let the Ministry handle her former lord. It was harder and harder for her darling witch to move around, and Bella would be damned before she let her wife struggle alone. Unfortunately, this mean there was an astonishing lack of things for her to do. She had gone all-out on Samhain, and along with her sister planned to do the same for Yule. Numerous trees, a fully-carved rune-log, a grand feast, festive decorations, ice sculptures--the Black Sisters had truly outdone themselves.

None of this information is exactly needed, but it does explain why, when Bellatrix Black apparated to Saint Mungo's at midday on December 21st, her perfectly tailored corseted dress had tinsel trimmings.

“Lady Black!” a healer greeted. “What--”

“What do you think?” Bellatrix snapped. The healer glanced at her wife, heavily pregnant and breathing hard, and nodded.

“Right. Follow me,” the healer said. Standing up, she moved them through a series of hallways and up a flight before entering a room. Two nurses were already there, along with another healer. They positioned Hermione on the bed, and Bellatrix sat down next to her, holding her wife’s hand as the healers began. Slowly their family trickled in. Cissy arrived first, greeting the two of them before returning to her son in the hallway. Andy and Nymphadora came next, rushing into the room. The healer kicked them out.

“Breathe darling,” Bellatrix said.

“I fucking know that!” Hermione snapped. “What, you think--FUCK!”

“You’re ready, start pushing,” the healer said. Hermione swore again as she forced herself part-way up, her hand clenching around Bella’s as she pushed.

“I’m not doing this again,” Hermione vowed, Bellatrix’s hand twisting in unnatural shapes in her grasp. “I’m not--GODS DAMNED--”

“Push!”

“I KNOW!”

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

“She’s beautiful,” Bellatrix said, staring in astonishment at her daughter. Newly born and already knocking the socks off the world.

“She’d better--” Hermione started. Her breath caught as Bellatrix pivoted, showing their daughter to her. Faint curls of pitch-black hair sat atop her head. When she opened her eyes Hermione gasped, taking in the silver-grey eyes of Bella’s Black ancestors.

“She’s perfect,” Hermione whispered. Bella shifted their daughter over to her as she started whining. Pulling her shift down, Hermione exposed her breast. They young daughter latched on immediately, greedily sucking up her milk.

“What’s her name?” Narcissa asked. Hermione started. She’d not noticed her in-laws re-entering the room.

“Mira,” Bellatrix said. “Mira Aquila Black.”

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

 

While the Black family rested at Saint Mungo’s, a battle took place far to their north. Harry Potter and Ronald Weasley had returned to Hogwarts, seeking the last of Voldemort’s horcruxes. As was foretold, Harry Potter fought Voldemort. As was foretold, one won, and one lost. Harry Potter lost, falling to a killing curse, the unknown horcrux ripped from his scar. As Voldemort moved to gloat, two curses ripped through his skull, flying from the wands of Luna Lovegood and Ginny Weasley.