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The Serpents and their Cub

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The three teens stayed in the pub for hours after they had finished their catch up, simply enjoying relaxing and being in a calm environment for maybe the first time since their first year. Each of them enjoying their time away from troubles for a very different reason, Hermione glad to have told her brothers (they just are family now, everything they had shared and experienced essentially cemented their bond in her mind) about everything with the three sisters and happy they had offered their support and not rejected her. Ron needed some time away, obviously they all knew what they were walking into but that didn’t stop the fact they are barely adults and have gone through more than some people double their ages, even triple their ages and he just wanted to act like a teenager. Harry… well he just wanted people to stop looking at him as some sort of hero and treat him like the person he wishes he was. Which is why he spends as much time with his two best friends as possible, because they never look at him like some sort of spectacle, in fact when the three are together everyone else looks at them all like they are a spectacle.

By the time the three teens found themselves stumbling up the path towards the castle, they knew that all other sane occupants would be asleep, which would be why a very tipsy Ron was making his way shushing his companions, very loudly with a finger to his lips defeating the purpose of wanting to be quiet making the most noise himself. Hermione shakes her head at her two best friends as they make their way in through the large entrance doors, stumbling slightly in her inebriated state, causing a loud giggle to escape her lips as she turns to her suddenly silent drinking buddies. As she does she spots them both standing pale with wide eyes looking behind her body, the young woman does not seem to take in what their faces may mean as she lets out a loud laugh “You look like you’ve seen a ghost!” The brunette releases peals of laughter as she turns, suddenly stopping herself at the sight of an angry and tired looking Molly Weasley and an amused Bellatrix Black standing at the base of the grand staircase before them. Brown eyes widened as she took in the two women, Molly glowering and Bellatrix smirking “Uh good evening Molly... Bellatrix. Is everything okay?” She asks slowly trying not to slur her words, hearing Ron snort slightly behind her.

Molly huffs loudly “Is everything okay?!” The red headed woman shakes her head vigorously “I have been worried the three of you may have gotten kidnapped from someone wanting revenge. But no… the three of you have just been off getting drunk.” She glares at her youngest son when he lets out another snort “Do you find this funny Ronald? Does your mother worrying entertain you? Lets see how entertaining it is when you help around here tomorrow with no potions to help with your inevitable hangover.” The woman glares at her now sheepish son, sending smaller glares to both Harry and Hermione. “Now get yourselves up to Gryffindor boys, it is late enough already. Hermione dear, Bellatrix has said she and her sisters will ensure you are looked after tonight.” The woman smiles softly at her, as both boys snigger behind her, the brunette hearing ‘You’re in trouble’ and a few other remarks made by both until she waves her wand and sends a stinging hex at both of them, smirking at their simultaneous yelps in response.

Hermione bids the two red heads and black haired boy goodnight as they begin their ascent before Bella takes her arm and begins to lead her back towards the dungeons “Cissy and Andy are probably sleeping already. Drinking two days in a row? Am I to begin wondering you are developing a problem little witch?” A slightly amused but concerned look is directed towards her while the woman raises a perfectly arched eyebrow.

The younger woman blushes as she walks and shakes her head, still quite drunk “No, yesterday was a one off, I was stressed and angry at my brain. Though I do have a better understanding of why I was feeling the way I was so that’s better. Tonight was… I don’t really know how to describe it. We needed to just let go and be ourselves, caught up on everything that we have all gone through since I avoided everyone for a while and about what we are planning. The boys now know about the prophecy and everything, they were quite entertained at the thought I’m meant to be with the three of you and knew I would need help through it all.” She giggles as she leans on the older woman’s arm, not entirely thinking about what she is saying to the woman, smiling as she catches the smirk that was on the woman's lips turn up into a small genuine smile.

Bellatrix smiles at the fact the Gryffindor shared with her friends that there is a prophecy between the four women, part of her had been very worried the teen would reject the idea and ignore that it is even an occurrence because of the fabricated but vivid past between them. She pulls the shorter woman closer to her body slightly with a smile “I am glad you were able to share it with them, and that they both reacted favourably; even if I am not sure how I should feel about their comments about you needing help with us.” The dark witch chuckles lowly at the thought with a slightly furrowed brow. “I also know that in no way does that change that we have a long way to go… I know the fake memories still affect you Hermione, and there is not much I can do except help you through your nightmares and show you that I am not the woman I was perceived as during my time with the Death Eaters.” The older woman looks away from her companion as she speaks the Slytherin password, eyes down ashamed while leading them both into the dark room, spotting her sisters asleep together on a bed much like the one from the night before.

Hermione frowns slightly at how small and sad Bellatrix seemed to have gotten “I know it is going to take some time, I cannot say I will wake up tomorrow and never react to you in a potentially adverse way if I am in some sort of episode. But I do know you are not the woman we were all led to believe, it will take some time for my subconscious to establish that, but last night with all of you was the first time I had not had a nightmare since, well I don’t even know how long. Which proves even more that I am safe with all of you, and my mind knows that and knows you are all there. We will get there Bellatrix, you may just have to be patient with me. But we could work on it tomorrow? I was thinking about going to the Room of Requirement to see if there is anything to salvage, and then the library after lunch. I know Narcissa will likely join me in the library… would you like to accompany me to the Room of Requirement?” The young woman smiles in earnest at the only other awake soul within the room, lighting up slightly at the happy look in near black eyes meeting her brown.

“I would love to join you in discovering how it has faired after the fiendfyre, whether the castle simply blocked off that room or if it is completely destroyed…” The dark witch trails off, her obvious interest and fascination showing on her face as she considers what may have happened with the incredibly powerful room. Hermione watches her expressions and obvious thoughts with a smile on her lips, knowing she made the correct decision in asking for help from the woman. She had wanted to spend more time with the witch, and her extensive knowledge of dark magic and her sheer power would definitely prove to not only be incredibly fascinating but also very helpful in understanding the magic, as she herself did not have much knowledge on that kind of magic - the resources within the restricted section never did go into enough detail.

“Then it is decided, after breakfast we can go and see if there is anything left over!” Her face shows just how excited she is about possibly seeing some of the power of the castle. “But now we need to go to sleep, or I really won’t want to wake up.” The brunette giggles slightly, smiling when her clothes are transfigured and her skin slightly caressed by the magic of the dark witch. The two climb into the bed beside the two other Black sisters, curling up to join them in slumber. Neither of the two knowing that the other has a matching smile on their face due to just how happy they are because of the progress and obvious bond they are building.