Fandom: Harry Potter
Title: Something's Going on Around Here
Pairing: Blaise/Padma, Hermione/OFC
Disclaimer: Poverty proves that I am not J K Rowling. I am playing in her sandbox without her permission but much gratitude.
Archiving: Okay to list archives, Girls Dormitory and The Realm. http://www.realmoftheshadow.com/morte206.htm
Feedback: Should you care to share your views on this feel free to do so at firstname.lastname@example.org
"How did your family get into the funeral business Mr. Zabini?"
My parents have come to Hogsmeade this weekend, supposedly because they miss me, but really because they want to meet Padma, again, now that we are officially dating. So here we are having dinner at the Wild Caper with my parents and Padma, my love, is valiantly trying to make small talk.
"Actually Padma I am the first in my family to be involved in the business."
"But I thought…" Padma’s voice trails off confused and I can see my father smiling. He loves telling the story of how he and Mother fell in love but her father had promised her to another. How they ran away together hours before their Leaving Feast and were secretly married by my uncle, Nikolai, the priest. And how when Grandfather found them days later mother stood up to him and demanded to be free to choose her own husband. In every telling the whole thing becomes grander more outrageously romantic. The truth is the argument lasted all of twelve minutes ending with Mother’s announcement that she was pregnant, whereupon Grandfather demanded -as she’d known he would- that they marry. Recently Mother confided in me that she was, in fact, not pregnant she’d just said that to get her way.
"Stop it Peri. You’ll have to forgive my husband dear he loves to drag things out. When we married Peri took my family name. My father wanted a Zabini to run the business you see but he had no sons and I wanted nothing to do with it. My magical talents don’t lie in that direction. I was to marry a distant cousin, whom I detested, but more importantly, to my father, was a Zabini. Peri offered to take my name as a means of appeasing the old man."
"And that’s how I got involved in the business," Father cheerfully concludes.
"Oh." Padma slips her hand in mine under the table. "So then you met at Hogwarts?"
"Mother was in Slytherin and Father in Ravenclaw." Under the table I squeeze Padma’s hand.
"So you see why we have such hope for you two," Father teases.
"Hush Pericles you’re making the girl blush."
Merlin’s Beard why can’t the earth just open up and swallow me now.
/ / / / / / / /
"Do you think they liked me?"
We’re in Padma’s room getting ready for bed. Ravenclaw prefects get their own room and shower bath. Even with my own room I have to use the dormitory common bath which simply isn’t as conducive to showering, much less anything else, with someone.
Not that we’ve done anything else yet but still it doesn’t hurt to plan ahead.
"They invited you for the summer holiday didn’t they? They wouldn’t have otherwise, trust me. My cousin, Dimitri, his wife pissed them off back when she was just his girlfriend and they’ve never invited her again."
"She made some stupid comment about…well a stereotype really…that just happens to be true in this case."
Okay not the most enlightening of explanations but hopefully…
No, no such luck.
"Something along the lines of Sicilians, organized crime and He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named."
Okay so maybe I don’t wince every time someone says his name but still.
"Padma, love I know last year Potter…"
"Could you brush my hair."
I love brushing Padma’s hair, the little noises of pleasure she makes as I work the brush through and later, after I’ve braided it, when I lick her neck. I love the heavy silken feel of it in my hands. And I especially adore the feel of it on my body, on my chest, my stomach when she’s on top of me and we’re both almost, but not quite, naked and kissing.
"Hermione and Harry are right you know, about the power of names. Besides I thought…aren’t some of your family."
"No, none to my knowledge at any rate. That whole ‘before there were Death Eaters there were Zabini’ nonsense has to do with Necromancy and the whole funeral director thing. Remember I told you that some of us get into Slytherin based on something other than blood purity."
"My family is not pureblood by a long shot. Never has been but we just don’t talk about it. Besides what ‘pureblood’ family is really. We end up in Slytherin, I think, because we have a tendency to naturally gravitate to the Dark Arts in our line of work."
"How did your family…"
"And that brings us back to Sicilians and organized crime. Family legend has it that we got started in the business to help cover up the illegal activities some of the family, mostly the muggle side, were engaged in."
"Blaise R. Zabini, Mafia Princess," Padma teases.
"Careful we’ve had people killed for less."
"Is that the royal ‘we’ or the family ‘we’?"
I put the brush down and slipping my arms around Padma’s waist bring my lips down to her ear. "Think your smart do you," I whisper before tracing the tip of my tongue along the outer rim of her ear. I am rewarded with a deep-throated moan and a searing kiss for my efforts.
"Well I am in Ravenclaw."
She kisses me again. And once again I am transported to that place where nothing but Padma exists for me.
/ / / / / / /
"So what does the R stand for anyway?"
"I’m here, as a favor to Hermione I might add, to help you pass into seventh year Weasley, not to answer personal questions."
"Was just curious is all. No need to get hostile."
Both Potter and Weasley require tutoring in multiple subjects this year. Potter less than Weasley, whether because he is the smarter of the two or simply better at rote memorization I don’t know. Certainly he has a facility for languages, something Weasley most definitely lacks as Hermione has asked me to tutor him in both Spanish and Latin.
"Sorry Weasley." I put the list of Latin roots we’ve been working on down and sigh. Perhaps I did take a small nip. Just a nibble really but in my head I can hear Mione and Padma both telling me to play nice and decide to answer his questions. "Roussakis."
"What sort of name is that?"
"Does it mean something?"
"It’s a family name."
"Oh." Weasley looks puzzled. "When my parents married Father took Mother’s last name."
Weasley appears to ponder this bit of information for a moment before opening his mouth and amazingly enough not inserting his foot. "Never heard of a bloke doing that."
"Neither had he."
/ / / / / /
"Blaise! Hold on a minute." Potter catches up to me, urgently tugging at the arm of my robe so that we are off to the side.
"I wanted to talk to you…about Hermione."
"What about her?"
"Well surely you’ve noticed. She’s been in a bit of a funk lately wouldn’t you say? I was wondering…well I know she doesn’t talk to Ron and me about everything…I thought maybe you might know what was going on."
I do but I can’t share with Potter. Hermione would kill me.
"She’ll be alright she just needs some time to sort things out."
"So you do know."
"Potter…Harry I…." Shit I don’t know what to say. I can’t say anything about Hermione’s being heartbroken when she’s not supposed to be seeing anyone in the first place.
"I’m just worried, both of us, Ron too, we’re just concerned. She didn’t even study last night Blaise. She forgot to nag us about studying too."
"I’ll talk to her okay."
/ / / / / /
I finally find Hermione in Moaning Myrtle’s lavatory. She’s sitting on a windowsill burning one of the sickeningly sweet smelling Muggle cigarettes Shelagh favors.
"Potter and Weasley are worried about you, you know. Apparently you forgot to nag them about homework and studying last night."
Hermione shrugs her shoulders listlessly.
"Can I join you?"
"It’s a big windowsill."
I hop up onto the sill and sit cross-legged facing her. "Mione love," I stub out the cigarette, "I know you’re hurting." Tears are starting to make their way down the side of her face and I reach out to rub them away with my thumb. With a sob Hermione throws herself into my arms and buries her head in the crook of my neck. Now what. I’m not good at this, the comfort thing, unless it involves death. I’m really good with it then. Well I suppose loss is loss.
"Sweetie listen to me," Hermione’s sniffles subside somewhat, "I know this is trite but it’s true. Things will get better. You will get over this. There will be others. I promise."
The renewed sobbing, fiercer than before, was not what I was aiming for. She’s saying something too but what I’m not sure the only thing I can make out for sure is Shelagh.
Shelagh. I could kill her for what she’s doing to Hermione. The bitch actually broke up with her in a letter. How rude is that. The decent thing, calling it quits with Hermione face to face, was apparently too much for her.
"You…y-y-you know wha-what she said. She said I was too young. She said it was too much of a hassle my being here at Hogwarts."
"Then don’t you see love, she’s an ass. If she really cared for you it wouldn’t matter. Summer holidays are just around the corner, if she hasn’t the patience to wait for you a few more weeks than she isn’t worth your tears."
/ / / / / / /
Turning around, I see Weasley making his way through the crowds towards me. We’ve just finished our Latin exam and I am eager to compare notes with Padma who sat it earlier today.
"What is it Weasley?"
"I just wanted to say thanks. For the tutoring, you know, I’m pretty sure I passed thanks to you."
"Also I wanted to say thank you for Hermione too. For being…for being her friend and all. I know I haven’t always been welcoming but…but you’re good for her. And she needed…she needs a girl friend, needs you."
"I already have a girlfriend," I tease and Weasley blushes.
"That’s…I didn’t mean…"
"Relax Weasley I was playing with you."
"Oh well then…so yeah…thanks."
"You don’t ever have to thank me for being friends with Hermione. Friendship with her is its own reward."
Weasley looks puzzled, clearly my compliment went over his head.
"She is aces isn’t she."
Perhaps it didn’t go over his head after all.