Draco Malfoy Harry Potter Hermione Granger
Action Romance
Multiple Eras
Philosopher's Stone Chamber of Secrets Prizoner of Azkaban Goblet of Fire Quidditch Through the Ages Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
Published: 12/26/2002
Updated: 06/03/2003
Words: 163,214
Chapters: 24
Hits: 76,742

Hogwarts Exposed


Story Summary:
Hermione hasn't seen her two best friends in five years. Harry has``been living a self-imposed exile in the Muggle world and Ron has been``imprisoned in Azkaban. Her life is about to change dramatically.

Chapter 18

Chapter Summary:
Hermione hasn't seen her two best friends in five years. Harry has been living a self-imposed exile in the Muggle world and Ron has been imprisoned in Azkaban. Her life is about to change dramatically.

Chapter Eighteen


Wednesday, December 31, 2003, 8 PM

"Hermione, how are you this evening?" Damien asked pleasantly, the evil smirk on his face undermining his tone.

"Just lovely. I can't think of any place I'd rather be chained," Hermione answered with venom soaked words. "Did you forget to pay the heating bill or do you purposely want me to catch pneumonia?" The dungeon was not freezing cold; to an active, clothed person, it would not be uncomfortable. Hermione, however, was neither active nor clothed."

"My dear, you can be out of those chains and warm in my bed in a matter of minutes. Just say you want to join us."

"No, thank you. I prefer to stand here in my own waste."

"Is that what I smell? I thought perhaps you were wearing a new perfume. Crabbe, Goyle, come here," Damien shouted.

Crabbe and Goyle reluctantly entered the chamber. It was obvious by their demeanor that they both feared Damien a great deal.

"Get the hose and flush that shit down the sewer. While you're at it, hose down our guest, she's beginning to reek." The two lackeys quickly attached a hose to the water outlet and turned it on full blast. After flushing the floor clean they turned the cold water on the already shivering Hermione. She quaked as the freezing water soaked her body.

After a few minutes Damien yelled, "That's enough! Hang that up and get out of here."

The two men tripped over each other as they nervously completed the task and then scurried to the door.

"When I watch those two twats, I understand why the Great One wants to solicit you. Despite the fact that you are a mudblood, you at least possess brains."

"Brains enough to know I want nothing to do with you or your so-called 'Great One'." Hermione quivered as she spoke. Not out of fear, but because she was now extremely cold. "Why don't you just kill me and get this over with?"

"My dear Hermione, you give me so little credit. Don't you think I know why you are so eager to die? You think that if you sacrifice yourself quickly that I will no longer kill the girl. You should know me better than that. I would never allow you to miss the pleasure of seeing her die. You will suffer. You will wish you were dead, but you will see her die before your wish is granted."

Damien walked over to Hermione and stroked her arm. "You look cold. This isn't a hotel; we don't supply towels. Don't worry, soon you will forget all about the cold. Your first torture will be quite mild. After I finish, you will have another forty-eight hours to consider joining us. In fairness, I should tell you that the second torture will not leave you looking quite so attractive as you are today." Damien laughed to himself as he placed his fingers on Hermione's chest and dragged his nails toward her nipples.

Hermione knew what Damien had in mind for the second torture, but what was he going to do today? Her question was quickly answered as he walked over to the table, picked up the thumbscrews and said, "I'm not quite sure why they call these thumb screws when in fact you can crush four fingers and two thumbs at one time." Damien smiled as he looked at Hermione. "Of course, in order to do two thumbs, they have to be in close proximity. Since that isn't possible in your current situation, I think we'll just concentrate on fingers." Hermione tried not to look at either Damien or the device he held in his hands.

"To prove I'm a nice guy, I'll give you a choice. Would you prefer me to crush the fingers on your left or right hand?"

"I prefer you go to hell. You bastard." Hermione's voice was filled with hatred.

"I'm sure you'll get that wish. In reality, I think I'll feel rather at home there. Since you seem unable to make a decision, I believe we will do the left hand." Damien leaned down and quickly slipped the small viselike device over Hermione's fingers. He hastily tightened the device until the two metal bars firmly held her fingers in place.

"Not exactly how you planned to spend New Year's Eve is it? This is your last chance. Will you join us?" Hermione issued a nonverbal response as she spit in Damien's face.

He gave her a firm knee to the groin and a backhand across the face. "I was told you were smart. For someone smart, you are certainly a slow learner."

Hermione held back the tears as she winced in pain.

"You just make me enjoy my work that much more," Damien said as he slowly began to tighten the thumbscrews. Slowly more and more pressure was applied to Hermione's delicate fingers.

Hermione bit her lips as the pain became more and more excruciating. Just prior to passing out, she heard the sound of multiple bones cracking.

* * * * * *

Caitlin had fallen asleep on a chair in the corner of the common room. Jamie generally would have woken the girl and recommended that she go up to her dorm, but she didn't have the heart. Jamie knew that Caitlin had gotten extremely little sleep since her mother vanished. Pureheart was able to keep the bad dreams away, but not calm her into a sleep. Madame Pomfrey had offered to give her a sleeping draught, but Caitlin was reluctant to take drugs. Understandably, Jamie felt it best that the young girl be allowed to sleep in the bustling Common Room.

It was New Year's Eve and the majority of the Gryffindors who had returned for the Yule Ball were waiting to celebrate the New Year. For those not directly affected by Professor Granger's disappearance, life, after a few days of grief, went on. For those close to her it could never be the same, unless by some miracle she was returned to them. Harry had not told Jamie and Caitlin that there was a possibility of Hermione being tortured, but he had been honest when he told them that with each day that passed the likelihood of her ever returning to them lessened.

Harry and Ron wanted to go off searching for Hermione, but listened to rationale when Snape asked them where they would start. They realized there was no way of knowing whether Hermione was even in the country. As difficult as it was, the only practical thing to do was wait.

Classes would resume on Monday and Harry had reluctantly agreed to continue teaching. At least it would keep his mind occupied for a few hours each day. Professor McGonagall had come out of retirement to fill in until her favorite student came back. McGonagall refused to believe that Hermione would not return. No one at this juncture in time would even consider the possibility that Hermione might need to be replaced.

Harry had insisted that Caitlin return to the dormitory. He loved the young girl and he was extremely lonely without her company, but he thought it best that she be around her friends and activity and not just sitting with him crying all day.

Suddenly, Caitlin screamed out in horrifying pain. Jamie ran to her only to freeze in terror as she saw the young girl clutching her left hand. Her fingers appeared to be smashed and blood was everywhere.

"Alex, Amanda, help!" Jamie screamed. "Alex, you saw Pomfrey put me in stasis. Do you remember how to do it?"

Alex trembled, as he looked at Caitlin, who was screaming and crying, obviously in dreadful pain. "I'm not sure, Jamie. What if I get it wrong?"

"I have faith in you Alex. Please, just do it. We have to stop the pain and the bleeding."

Alex literally shook as he tried to remember exactly what Pomfrey had done. He prayed he had the words correct.

"You did it, Alex!" Jamie cried. "Quickly, you and Amanda rush her to Madame Pomfrey; I have to get Professor Potter."

Jamie hurried off toward the staff quarters as Alex and Amanda prepared to transport Caitlin' stiff body. The rest of Gryffindor looked on in astonishment wondering exactly what had happened.

Jamie ran the corridors of Hogwarts faster than she had ever sprinted in her life. As she turned a corner she ran into the Headmaster. Somehow they both managed to keep their balance, but before Snape could discipline her she shouted, "Hurry, go to the infirmary. I have to get Professor Potter. Move!"

Snape turned and ran toward the medical area, not even questioning the fact that he, the Headmaster, was following the orders of a fifth year.

When Jamie reached Harry's room she didn't even bother to knock as she burst through the door and ran inside. Harry had no time to protest before she grabbed his hand and started pulling him. "Hurry! It's Caitlin! The Infirmary."

Jamie ran so fast that Harry had to struggle to keep up. He had no chance to ask any questions. Only when they reached the infirmary did she finally take a breath before asking Alex, "How is she?"

"I'm not sure. Madame Pomfrey wouldn't let us stay."

"Well she's not keeping me out! Caitlin's my daughter," Harry protested. "Jamie, come with me. I'm sure Pomfrey will want to know what happened. Alex, Amanda, thank you for your help."

Harry hurried in to find Madame Pomfrey leaning over Caitlin as Professor Snape looked on.

Professor Snape curled his lip as he looked at Jamie. "Perhaps now Miss Zacherley, you would be so kind as to tell me what happened?"

Jamie first looked at the Headmaster and then at Harry who was also waiting for an explanation. "I have no idea," she responded. Severus and Harry both looked at Jamie as if ready to bite her head off, but allowed her to continue. "We were all in the Common Room. As you know Ha--, Professor Potter, Caitlin has been having trouble sleeping since Herm-- since Professor Granger was taken. She had curled up in the corner with a book and feel asleep. The other Gryffindors were getting ready to celebrate the New Year. I decided to let her sleep while I looked after other matters.

"Suddenly she woke up and started screaming as if she were in terrible agony. I thought she was having a nightmare, but when I ran to her she was holding her hand and there was blood everywhere. I can't envision what happened."

Madame Pomfrey looked up from the bed, "What are they doing to poor Hermione?"

Severus and Harry stared at Pomfrey fleetingly before the Headmaster asked, "What does Hermione have to do with what happened to this poor girl?"

Pomfrey sighed deeply, "Harry, I know you don't have a lot of respect for Sybill, but she is a far better source of knowledge on what I believe happen here than I am. Severus, it might be best if you summoned her before I try to bring Miss Garrison out of stasis."

* * * * * *

"Miss Zacherley, you may return to your House," the Headmaster instructed.

Jamie looked at Harry as if pleading to stay, "Severus, if you don't mind. Jamie is sort of a part of our family. I would like her to stay."

Severus nodded his head. "I always thought that Hermione and Miss Zacherley had more than a normal teacher-student relationship. Yes, she may stay if you so wish."

Just then Sybill Trelawney came floating into the room. The first thing she did was glance at the bed containing young Caitlin whose hand was now bandaged. "What happened to the poor girl?

Madame Pomfrey answered as Harry looked at Trelawney with antipathy. "Her fingers were smashed."

"How awful! Will you be able to mend them?

"Yes, but it will be quite painful. Finally, Gilderoy Lockhart's bumbling serves a good purpose."

Sybill Trelawney looked questioningly at Madame Pomfrey. "Lockhart? What does he have to do with this?"

"I never felt I would say this, but I'm grateful that because of him I know how to debone part of a person. The small bones in her tiny fingers were shattered beyond healing. I had to remove them and now I am regrowing them with Skele-Gro."

Trelawney shivered at the thought. "How did it happen?"

Headmaster Snape spoke up. "That is why we have asked you to join us. The young lady was sleeping on a soft leather chair at the time it happened. She did nothing to cause it."

Trelawney looked around the room questioningly until she got to Pomfrey who said, "This is Hermione's little girl, Caitlin."

Sybill looked at Madame Pomfrey in amazement. "Do you think...? Do you realize how rare that is? How powerful the witches must be? How strong their bond? If you're correct that means that.... Poor Hermione!"

Harry looked at Sybill is disgust. "Would you mind putting all that in terms that people who don't spend their lives with their head in the clouds could understand?"

Sybill looked at Harry as is if greatly insulted, "Harry, I realize you have little respect for my area of magic and for me, but what I'm about to tell you is possible and I believe that this young lady is living proof." Trelawney glanced toward Caitlin. "Have you ever heard of what muggles refer to as telepathy?"

Harry nodded, "Isn't that when people claim to communicate from mind to mind by extrasensory means?"

Sybill smiled, "Did you actually listen during one of my lectures? I'm impressed, Harry. Many seers are able to do this. Unfortunately, I've temporarily lost this power due to sickness, but if I still had it; we could be having this conversation mind to mind without using our voices."

Harry frowned, "What exactly does this have to do with Caitlin's hand?"

"I have heard tales of very powerful witches that in times of extreme anguish are able to bond together. They share the pain. The one witch accepts because of her caring for the other half the pain so that the other can deal with it and survive. They also receive the same injury. This can only be done by two witches with extremely strong Hyperempathic ability."

Harry just stared at Trelawney. "I know Hermione is a powerful witch, but Caitlin is just a young girl. They've only known each other three months. Only since the trial has their bonding developed. You expect me to believe that they have such a powerful and strong link that somehow that little girl is reaching out over who knows how many miles to take some of Hermione's pain so that she can cope?"

"Harry, when you were ten if someone had told you that witches and wizards were real and could do magic; you wouldn't have believed it. Once you came to Hogwarts you believed because you saw that it was true. Look at her hand."

Harry couldn't think of any other explanation." Does that mean she can communicate mind to mind with Hermione? Does she know where she is and what is happening?"

"If only that were the case, we could find Hermione. No, she is only a vessel for accepting pain."

Harry looked hopefully at Pomfrey. "Will regrowing Caitlin's bones restore Hermione's?

Pomfrey sadly shook her head, no. "The plus side is that we know Hermione is alive. Sadly, we know she is also being made to suffer."

Harry couldn't believe that he was asking Trelawney questions and worse was going to accept her answers as factual. "Does Caitlin feel all of Hermione's pain?"

"No. Everything I have read indicates that the receiving vessel only feels extreme or life threatening pain. She would not for instance feel a slap or a toothache. She would feel a sickness if it were possible for it to cause Hermione's death."

Abruptly Harry had a horrible thought. "Is it possible for Caitlin to die because of this connection?"

Pomfrey reluctantly decided to answer this question. "That depends on whether one thing or a number of things would cause Hermione's death. Its difficult to explain without causing you grief at the thought."

"Please explain. I have to know!" Harry practically begged.

"If Hermione were to die by having an incurable disease or being stabbed in the heart, then Caitlin would die also. If the death were a result of a number of injuries, some of which I have been able to address, then she would survive."

"So the slime that took Hermione has the opportunity of taking both the ladies I love and doesn't even realize it. Can't we break the bond?" Harry asked.

Severus looked solemnly at Harry, "Could you stop loving Hermione if it meant saving your life?" Harry indicated that he couldn't. "Neither do I believe that Caitlin could."

"What do we do now?" Harry asked

"I feel as a precaution she should be kept under constant observation. Caitlin will have to remain here at least two days anyway for her bones to regrow. A few minutes could mean the difference between life and death," warned Pomfrey.

Harry went closer to the bed and leaned other to kiss Caitlin on the cheek. On Christmas Eve I thought my life couldn't be any better and now just one week later I'm on the verge of losing everything I love while the world celebrates a Happy New Year.

* * * * * *

Thursday, January 1, 2004 12:01 AM

"My hand." I'm going to die. I'll never see Harry again. I can't let them kill Caitlin.

Tears streamed down Hermione's cheeks. She couldn't stand the horrific pain. Someone had cast a spell while she was unconscious to prevent any further blood loss, but the throbbing persisted unceasingly. Hermione was amazed that the pain hadn't put her in shock. It seemed as if her strength to survive was being supplemented and that as agonizing as the pain was, it should be worse.

Hermione thought back to Emma Wrong's speech prior to the start of the school year. She realized no one could help her because no one had any idea where she was being held prisoner. She didn't even know.

She had to help herself, but how? She was trapped in this damn Cage.

The only way Damien would leave her out was if she agreed to pleasure him.

I have to agree. I have to make him believe I want to be one of them. Prostitutes make a living having sex with dirt bags. I have to do it. If I die, I at least die trying. That depraved bastard will not kill Caitlin.

Suddenly she had a plan, a horrible plan. The thought of it made her stomach feel sicker than it already did.

Please Harry! Please understand. I have to do it. I have to try to save her. She can't die. I can't watch that. Please! Please give me the strength.

* * * * * *

Thursday, January 1, 2004

"Harry I'm very concerned," Madame Pomfrey said as she once again checked Caitlin's temperature.

"Do you think it could be a reaction to the Skele-Gro?"

"No. The bones have formed properly. Skele-Gro doesn't cause a fever. It could just be a coincidence, but with the connection between the two of them, I'm quite concerned. If she was thrown in a dungeon naked-- If they didn't give her any clothing she could be getting sick. She needs all her strength. This could be bad, very bad."

* * * * * *

Friday, January 2, 2004

"Hermione, dear you are not looking well at all," Damien said in a sarcastic fashion. "You're extremely insipid. Should I have Crabbe and Goyle move your Cage out into the sunlight? Oh! I'm sorry. We can't do that. You might deduce where you are.

Hermione tried to stay composed. If she lost her temper she might not be about to see this through.

"How is your hand? I hope I didn't clip your fingernails too short. By the way, I brought a surprise for you."

Hermione's heart stopped. If they already had Caitlin, all hope was lost.

"I brought some family pictures for you to look at. I'm very proud of these pictures and will be deeply hurt if you refuse to look at them. Let's say another finger for each time you close your eyes or turn your head. Does that sound fair?"

I have to look. I need one good hand if I'm to have any chance at all.

"This one was taken of an Auror who tried to join us to spy." He held the picture close to her face so that every detail of the man's torture was obvious. Her stomach clenched as she looked at the picture, willing herself not to turn away. The picture of the rack only made her realize that the torture of the thumbscrews was mild in comparison.

Wordlessly, Damien held up a picture of someone in the head crusher. "Rather eye popping, isn't it?"

She was unable to control the look of disgust that flashed over her face. "How can you joke about doing something like this?"

"Hermione, I'm simply a product of my environment."

"Just what do you mean by that?"

"I mean I grew up seeing killing all around me. I have no more qualms killing a person than you do killing an insect. Different people respect and value different things. You respect life. I respect power. You live to love. I live to hate. You live to give and I live to take. We balance each other; or at least we did."

Hermione knew exactly what he meant. When she died there would be one less person to fight against fiends such as Damien.

"I think you will really enjoy this series. They are all of the same person, sort of a before and after series."

Damien held up the first picture of a smiling lovely young witch. The girl appeared to be younger than Hermione; it looked like she was dressed for a special occasion as she waved to Hermione. In the second picture the smile was completely gone. Waves of nausea rolled over her as he flipped through the progression of pictures, knowing that if she didn't try something to save herself she would meet the same fate.

"Hermione, before I proceed, I will give you one more chance. Will you join the Death Eaters and pledge your loyalty to the Great One?"

Hermione slowly lifted her head as tears filled her eyes and said, "Yes."

Damien looked at Hermione in shock, "Hermione, I'm very disappointed in you. After everything I've heard about you, I certainly expected you to die for your hopeless cause."

Hermione looked at Damien pleadingly, "Isn't there something else I can do to prove I will be loyal other than execute Caitlin?"

"At first I was sure you were lying. I considered that perhaps you thought you could escape, but now you still plead for the girl. No, Hermione, the Great One was quite clear. You must help kill the girl."

"Damien, she is so young. Must she suffer? Could she please be put under a spell until death has taken her?"

Damien looked at Hermione with what could have almost passed for compassion. "If I am satisfied with your performance of the first test, I will put the girl under a spell. She will not be aware of your presence. She will simply never wake up."

"When do I pleasure you? Hermione asked emotionlessly.

"Today, after you have been scrubbed and dusted for lice."

"Can you stop the pain in my hand so that I can fully concentrate on pleasing you?"

"That must wait until after you pass the second test."

"Crabbe, Goyle!"

They tripped over each other's feet as they lumbered towards Damien.

"Take her to be showered. Give her soft sponges and good soap." He turned to Hermione. "You will wash yourself thoroughly, every crack and crevice. Wash your hair, and comb it." Again, he looked at Crabbe and Goyle. "You will help her, if she requires it. Do not damage her any further."

* * * * * *

"How do you feel Caitlin? Jamie inquired.

"My hand feels better, but I feel weak and Madame Pomfrey says I have a fever that she can't get to break. She thinks Mum may be sick? I hope not," answered Caitlin.

"Me, too. The bond you two have is amazing. You love her an awful lot, don't you?"

"I couldn't love her more. Jamie, she turned my world around. She just has to make it through this."

"She will. Your mum is a very strong and courageous witch. With your Hyperempathic help she'll make it."

"I'm afraid I won't be much help. My body feels all weak and achy."

"You'll be fine. I have a feeling you are going to be a very strong and powerful witch some day. I better stay on your good side."

"Jamie, I wish we were real sisters."

"So do I Caitlin. I love you as if you were."

* * * * * *

Of all the humiliation she had borne throughout her capture, this was the worst. Damien had unlocked her from the Cage, but she had been shackled, both legs and arms, and Crabbe and Goyle had led her to another part of the dungeon. They had blindfolded her as well, dragging her body over the stone floor. As soon as the support of her metal prison was gone, her legs had fallen out from under her.

When the blindfold was removed she saw that they had led her to another stone room, not all that different from the one she had occupied previously. The furnishings, however, were much different. Rather than various torture devices, there was a large bed, covered in soft looking blankets. In one corner, there was a shower, partitioned off by a wall and curtain. They pulled her towards this and stood her up. She leaned against the wall as they scrubbed her down. The water was too hot and their hands were too rough. When they had finished, they pulled her out of the shower and she once more fell to the floor, her legs still unable to support her.

Crabbe pushed her down on the bed, securing more chains around her. They left quickly, closing the door behind them.

Her mind was racing, a plan formed completely. She felt the hot tears streaming down her face as her body throbbed. The blood was circulating more freely now that she was no longer in the Cage and the pins and needles feeling that she had felt countless times before now covered her entire body, and was countless times worse than she had ever experienced. She heard the door open and close again as the voice of her captor washed over her.

"Hermione, did Crabbe and Goyle do a thorough job of washing you?"

"A little too complete. Was it necessary to allow them to fondle me? And are you going to unchain me to perform the first test?" Her voice was monotone and controlled.

"Until you complete both tasks you are still a prisoner and will be treated as such. Be thankful that you are not being required to service all the Death Eaters. Are you ready?"

"Yes!" Hermione said as if sincerely meaning it.

"Crabbe and Goyle will remain on the other side of this door. If you try to escape, I will give them the orders to begin removing your limbs."

"Damien, the only thing I'm going to do is make you feel like you have never felt before."

Damien smiled wickedly, "I like the sound of that."

Hermione smiled wickedly, "If you like the sound wait until you experience the actual feeling."

Damien caressed Hermione's naked body with his eyes. He was becoming aroused just by the anticipation of her touch. He took the keys to her shackles out of his pocket.

"Wait," said Hermione. "Before you unlock me, take off your clothes. I want nothing between us once I am released."

Damien couldn't believe his good fortune. The Great One was allowing him to have this beautiful individual and she actually seemed eager to be with him. Damien hurriedly stripped and then undid the metal straps that went around Hermione's ankles.

Hermione sighed.

Those straps were tight and had been cutting into her ankles. The moisture from the shower had doubled her pain. He hoisted her to her feet and undid the chains that held her wrists to her waist. He released her some and her knees buckled again. She used this to her advantage and allowed herself to slide down, clinging to Damien's body.

She knelt in front of him, trailing her right hand over him before grasping him. "I'd prefer two hands for this." His only answer was a moan as she moved her mouth closer to him. Mentally, she was gagging, but a wave of strength washed over her.

Damien instantaneously found his feeling of ecstasy turned to one of unspeakable pain. He wanted to strangle the girl kneeling before him, but he needed his hands to pry her mouth and hand off of him. Hermione cringed as she felt warm blood touch her lips, but maintained her hold until Damien managed to send a knee into her chest knocking her on her back. Although still in agonizing pain, Damien somehow managed to pull Hermione to her feet and then slam her so hard in the jaw that she went sliding across the floor hitting her head on the table leg. Hermione lay motionless.

Damien stared at her, his hands protectively covering himself. "You damn bitch. Play me for a fool will you? You'll pray to be dead, but I'll keep you alive just so you can see your daughter die." Hermione's body lay frozen as Damien made his way to the door, leaving his clothes behind.

Crabbe and Goyle jumped from their chairs as the door slammed behind Damien. "Come here you two morons. Go in there and take her back to the dungeon. Saw off the bitch's right leg, do a charm to stop the blood loss and put her back in the cage. I'll be back later to personally rip her breasts to shreds."

They watched as he turned the corner. Crabbe looked up at Goyle and said. "I hate that little swine. After what she did to him, I almost feel bad that we have to cut her apart."

"Yeah!" Goyle agreed. "But if we don't, we'll be joining her."

As always, I would like to thank those of you who took the time to review. Your reviews make my day.

I'd also like to thank my wonderful betas: Atlantis and Amber. Welcome to the team Amber.

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