Continuing Tales

The Catfish

A Harry Potter Story
by Miss Dasti

Part 11 of 25

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Hermione would've liked to say she'd spent all Sunday helping fortify her apartment, but really she'd spent most it keeping herself and Crookshanks away from Fergus. In the beginning she'd wanted to chat with him, find out more about him and Dobby, maybe even bond a little. It rapidly became apparent that the feeling wasn't mutual.

It didn't take long for Fergus to really come out of his shell, and as soon as he did, Hermione wanted to shove him right back in again. Her first impression of him hadn't necessarily been good, but she soon realized she'd vastly underestimated him: he was, in fact, a million times worse than Kreacher used to be. Though he did an excellent job of avoiding direct insults, by the end of the day, she was feeling worse about her life situation than she had in years. He deflected all attempts at civil conversation and when he wasn't cleaning or casting every protective spell known to man and elf over her home, he was making subtly—and sometimes openly—disdainful comments about every aspect of her life.

Her favorites were, as follows:

"I'm not naming any names, but whoever is continuing to keep this dreadful stinking hairball of a cat alive should be incarcerated."

"It looks as if a hundred generations of dirty people have been breeding on your carpets."

"You impress me with your devotion to equal opportunity, Miss Granger. Hiring a blind interior decorator was a bold move."

"There appears to be a drawer in your bedroom full of some old woman's bloomers. Does your grandmother visit often? Shall I have them all mailed back to her, or burned?"

"You know, tableware does come in styles that aren't nearly so ugly."

"It sounds as if you're rising rather slowly in the Ministry. Have you been unable to leave a lasting impression on your superiors? Shall I perhaps hem your skirts a little shorter?"

The odd thing was, no matter how she raged back at him, he seemed only to find her entertaining. She tried avoiding him, but her home wasn't that large and he was doing a fine job of discreetly following her around. When she dared ask what he'd done with her sofa cushions (because the ones now decorating her couch were much nicer), he'd announced that he'd shrunk them, ran them through the garbage disposal, and replaced them with a few from the Malfoys' storage. The covers on her old ones had been a handmade gift from her mother.

"I can have new ones purchased for the Malfoy family and returned to storage later," he assured her while straightening the portraits on the bookshelf, seeming not to notice her standing very close behind him, seething and red-faced and clutching a wooden spoon like a Beater's bat. "What I cannot purchase is a new memory of sitting on your abominable couch for the first time."

She noticed how he subtly positioned every picture that included Ron behind another, blocking Ron from view. The picture of him and Hermione kissing in front of the lion exhibit at the Bristol Zoo, which Hermione had completely forgotten about, lay face-down under a pile of books Fergus had stacked on it in alphabetical order. She didn't have time to question this odd behavior, because at that moment Fergus started to push the litterbox out the window with Crookshanks still in it, and that required her full attention.

The little elf avoided the microwave, television, and all other overtly electrical implements in Hermione's apartment. He didn't even deign to wipe the thick layer of dust off her stereo, though he certainly didn't spare it any dirty looks. As night fell and Hermione started switching on the lights, she found them mysteriously burning out behind her, replaced with her emergency candlesticks. She caught Fergus lighting the last of them in her bedroom.

She admit she lost her cool a little.

"Those are for power outages," she snarled at him. "The electric lights work just fine. You've broken all my bulbs, you little shit, even the fucking spares!"

"Electric lights are the foulest of all Muggle inventions," he announced. "They are noisy and cast an ugly stale light, and the long rectangular one in the kitchen blinks. I nearly had an epileptic spell watching it."

"The blinking isn't that bad, and I was planning on replacing the bulb when it went out on its own! It was still working fine! And what do you mean, they're noisy?"

"I can hear them," he said, his large ears quivering indignantly. "It is a heinous and offensive noise. Your ridiculous Muggle boxes were also buzzing incessantly, that is why I have pulled all of their tails out of the walls, and killed the—what did you call them? Bulbs?" He sniffed haughtily. "I can still hear the humming in the walls where the Muggles have hidden the wires that feed all of your riffraff, but it is a bearable din. These candles will do for now, but I'd recommend investing in a set that hasn't been scraped out of a bargain bin. You will have to purchase more tomorrow when you brave the outside world." He paused. "It will be dangerous out there. Lucius might have worked out your identity by now. He might even be waiting for you tomorrow. I shudder to think of what he will do to you… if only you had some backup… someone to keep an eye on things, make sure you don't get killed when your back is turned…"

Hermione ignored the barbs: there were too many to contend with, and she'd had all day to fume at him without results (she felt a hundred times more sympathetic for Draco and even Lucius now). She gritted her teeth and breathed deep. Notwithstanding her current feelings, now wasn't the time to turn away help: her fear of Lucius outweighed her hatred for his butler. "Well then, will you come with me tomorrow as backup?"

Fergus raised an eyebrow. "Is that a serious request?"

"Er, yes."

He rolled his eyes. "Well then, voice it like a command."


"I cannot follow requests unless they are given as commands."

"Oh. Okay then." She coughed and said, in an awkward wooden voice, "Fergus, I command that you accompany me to the Ministry tomorrow as backup."


His face split into a wide grin at her incredulous expression. "Ah, I've wanted to do that all day. You really know nothing of elves, do you? How unfortunate that such an ignorant person is our mouthpiece to the wizarding world. I am sorry, Hermione Granger, but you are no master of mine, and as such I do not take orders from you. I deigned to bend the rules while you were under the Polyjuice, but not now." He glanced at his watch. "Since you've insisted, however, I'll tag along using the free will your radical political group has foisted on us elves. But first let me whip up a Disillusionment Tonic. It works better and lasts longer than the spell. Where is your cauldron?"

Hermione glared at him. "Under the sink."

"Very well, I shall set to work. Please do not disturb me for the rest of the evening."

As if I'd voluntarily talk to you, she thought, but settled for flipping him off behind his back.

Hermione didn't see Fergus again until seven o'clock the following morning. She was feeling remarkably positive towards him today: she'd gotten a decent enough night's sleep that had dulled all the raw nerves, and besides, she had a notorious soft spot for elves. She decided to forgive him for all the nasty things he'd said. After all, he'd been the Malfoys' elf for centuries, what had she expected?

She found him balanced on a stool in front of her stove, dusting pepper over a few fried eggs and tomatoes. One burner over, bacon and sausages were sizzling, and he even had bread toasting manually right on the flames. Nearby, the kettle was whining and a few oranges were squeezing themselves into a glass.

"Please, do sit down," Fergus said without turning. He waved a hand; the food arranged itself artfully on a plate, and it, along with the juice, a mug of tea, and all the fixings soared gracefully onto the table. "I was confronted with a bit of a challenge this morning. Your storeroom is poorly stocked, as well as your…" he scowled disapprovingly, "refrigerator, which I was forced to touch. I had to duck back home and borrow some supplies. I only just avoided Francis."

"Sorry," Hermione said, sitting at the table. "I don't eat breakfast most days. I'm fine with just a coffee on the way to work. But thank you for making me this, it looks amazing." She managed a smile.

He sniffed. "Only layabouts skip breakfast," he chided, "and it is astonishing to me that you have reached such a… mature age without learning to cook it for yourself."

Hermione's smile slid off her face. Well, so much for that. "Actually, I can cook. I wasn't the best at it until I moved in with… until a few years ago. Now I think I'm quite good, but like I said, breakfast isn't my thing, I usually only make lunch and dinner—"

"Breakfast," Fergus cut her off, "is the most important meal of the day, and the most delicious. What if this frail Muggle building were to collapse and trap you in this miniscule flat"—Hermione rolled her eyes—"and all you had to rely on for a morning meal from now until a horrific early death were sandwich fixings?"

Hermione blew a strand of hair out of her face. She'd never had to deal with someone this sarcastic since perhaps Professor Snape back at Hogwarts. "Well, thanks very much for looking out for me."

"You know, I could teach you to cook," he said, a condescending lilt in his voice. He ignored Hermione's repeated snarl of "I already can!" and went on, "I try to teach the Malfoy children to fend for themselves in the kitchen, so that if, god forbid, things really went downhill for the family, they'd be able to manage, but in this area I fear you'd be nearly as hopeless as Draco. I desisted with him after a single lesson." He paused. "On the other hand, Lucius is an excellent chef."

Hermione—who was grudgingly enjoying her breakfast—looked up from her plate, surprised. "He is?"

"Possibly the best of the lot," Fergus nodded, looking askance at her. "Admittedly he doesn't care for it, he lets us elves do our jobs, but then, Lucius tends to master things quite easily regardless of his interest level." When Hermione met his eyes, he turned away, speaking casually to her cooktop. "I perused your bedside bookshelf while you were sleeping and I couldn't help but notice the two of you have nearly the same personal collection."

Hermione flushed (not only because Fergus had been in her room when she was sleeping for Christ's sake) and went back to her plate. "Oh really?" she said, mimicking his nonchalance.

He came to sit across from her with his own breakfast: a single egg and strip of bacon. "Yes," he said, laying a napkin in his lap (with a reproving look at Hermione, whose napkin was still pinned under her butter knife). "Forgive me, but while I was cleaning all the dirty fingerprints off said bookcase, I saw a picture of you at the ribbon-cutting of the Liverpool Preschool for Young Wizards and Witches." He chewed a bite of egg. "Lucius oversaw that project."

Hermione was stunned. "Malfoy was involved with that? But I didn't see his name on any of the paperwork, or at the opening ceremony."

"Oh, I assure you, he was there. You are not the only one who knows how to brew Polyjuice. He has to conduct these sorts of things anonymously now, since the family name is poison, but he covered nearly all of the building costs and did all the accounting work. He is exceptional with numbers. On paper he was William Romine, I'm sure you'll have read that name." Fergus smirked when Hermione paled. "Actually, he asked me to draft one or two of the curriculums, since I have a touch of experience with the pre-Hogwarts education of young witches and wizards. I understand a few of my syllabi are in use now."

Hermione was gawping. "You're kidding."


"But you're the first elf to contribute to wizardkind so directly! If you became a member of the Society for Elfish Exoneration and spoke at a rally or two, you could really inspire—"

"No," Fergus cut her off. "Elves are not here to be inspiring, nor to be inspired. I view your cause as a terribly misguided joke, and I would never participate."

Only years of hearing similar phrases from nearly everyone kept Hermione from losing her shit. Still, there was something particularly enraging about seeing such an educated, self-respecting elf like Fergus say it in his polished voice. She felt her anger hit a peak, and her voice warbled when she spoke.

"Well, Fergus, I'm really sorry you feel that way. I'm sorry you think the way the Malfoys have treated you has been anything close to fair. I'm sorry you've deluded yourself into thinking they're your family and not slavers who have been taking advantage of you. And I'm sorry they've made you into such a despicable person. You've been terrible to me ever since we got here, and you know what? It stops now. I know what I did to Lucius was wrong, I know you care about him, and I'm grateful for your help, but that doesn't give you the right to—to treat me like this."

She set her fork down sharply, her breakfast half-eaten. "If you want to join me at the Ministry today as backup, you're still welcome to. If you want to run back to Lucius and tell him where I am, then good riddance. Either way I'm leaving in ten minutes." And with that she retreated back to her bedroom without seeing his reaction.

Hermione let herself seethe and throw pillows for a few minutes before letting herself process what had happened. She felt drained and, once her anger began to ebb, anxious. Damn it, he's going to be an even bigger pain in the arse now. Or he's gone and rounded up Malfoy and they're waiting for me by the front door.

She thought about sending an owl to Harry. Confessing to everything and pleading for his help. But she immediately rejected the idea. Lucius and Fergus had dirt on her that simply could not be allowed to surface; if either were apprehended, everything would come out.

Her only option was to face the music.

She turned around and screamed a little when she saw Fergus standing in her doorway, his ears laid back, his expression just skirting the edge of contrite. He cleared his throat. "Forgive my impertinence, Miss Granger," he said curtly. "I have been ornery. Please allow me to help you prepare for work."

Hermione hesitated, then—inevitably—softened. "I forgive you. Yes, you can help."

Five minutes later she sorely regretted it. While styling her hair, he asked, "Would you consider investing in a wig?" and then, while doing up her face: "I see you were being frugal when you purchased your makeup. It may benefit you to rethink that decision." Her favorite, though, came when he reviewed her outfit: "This blouse—you chose it because you've given up all hope of finding a husband, yes? My dear girl, a woman always has options, but not wearing that."

She may have been livid with him again had she not looked so stunning after he finished. He hadn't even used much makeup at all, just done a few things to her eyes and painted on a bit of lipstick and a little blush. Whatever he'd done, though, looked amazing. Really, she hadn't looked this good since Harry and Ginny's wedding years ago, and then it had taken her five hours to achieve. Still, a few times she'd nearly turned into an elf-murderer and she didn't want to think about the repercussions of that on her career.

Fergus at last deemed her acceptable and went off to take his Disillusionment Tonic. He met her at the front door; she felt his hand grab her wrist, and he asked, "Where is your office?"

"In the Department of Magical Law Enforcement. Level 2, room 245. Why—?"

Before she could say another word, he apparated them directly there.

The room was empty. Lucius wasn't sitting there in her office chair, like she'd half-expected him to be. She didn't know how stressed she'd been until that point: it was like a brick had been taken out of her stomach.

"You could've warned me," she snapped at Fergus, though secretly she appreciated the convenience. Apparation for wizards into the Ministry was only achievable in the Atrium, he'd saved her a ride in the lift and lots of walking. Fergus did not respond, though she heard him patter away to a chair in the corner of her office, and saw the cushion depress when he sat.

Three hours of steady pencil-pushing later and Hermione was feeling much more confident in her safety. Lucius hadn't come barging through her door yet; she imagined that even if he had figured out her identity, he wouldn't dare try anything in the bowels of the Ministry, with the Auror office just down the hall. It was silly, really, that she'd been so afraid.

She was just drawing up a report about a wizard in Cornwall who'd broken his parole by selling a maliciously charmed pair of mustache clippers when Belby stepped in.

"Hermione!" She glanced up at him, and his steps faltered. He was quiet a moment, trying to find his tongue. "What's the occasion?" he asked at last.

She stared at him, nonplussed. "What do you mean?"

"You look different. Is it somebody's birthday?"

She then remembered Fergus had fixed her up earlier. She flushed. "Oh, no. Nobody's birthday. I just decided to… do something different."

Belby was a professional, and accordingly he left the topic alone at that, but Hermione didn't miss the way his eyes lingered slightly longer on her than they used to, nor the fact that his cheeks were a little pinker than before. "Any headway on the Malfoy case?"

Hermione tensed, but only for a moment. Belby tended to ask her that every Monday morning. Brilliant way to start the week, really. "Nothing new yet, sorry. I've got Duke Rincon from Department of Magical Accidents and Catastrophes sending me his analysis of an explosion that occurred in one of the Malfoy apothecaries back in February. Maybe they had an erumpent horn. If so, we could charge them with holding and illegal substance with the intent to sell; that'd be enough to get a warrant to search all of their properties again, and maybe this time we'll find their stash. If it wasn't a horn, then maybe someone planted a bomb. If that's the case we could focus on tracking the bomber down, seeing why they're so disgruntled with the Malfoys. Maybe they have a few secrets to tell."

Belby's smile vanished. "Sounds like a long shot."

"We won't know until Rincon gets back to me."

Belby huffed. "Hermione, I've got a stack of reports on my desk that need addressing. Crimes related to Doxie Dust keep piling up and the supply isn't dropping off. This has got to stop. I know Lucius Malfoy is involved." He glanced at her report. "And I know you've had a tough few weeks trying to work this puzzle out, and you're discouraged. But I need you to refocus. You have a lot of sway in this department: people here respect you. Our superiors respect you. Any evidence, even the smallest piece, will be taken seriously."

Hermione gritted her teeth but did her best to look earnest. "I understand, Mr. Belby," she said. "I'll head straight to the DMAC right away and get the report from Rincon myself." She stood, and Belby looked mollified. Thankfully he didn't notice the transparent silhouette of an elf slip out the door behind them.

Fergus followed Hermione all the way to the DMAC and back. She found herself reassured by his presence; if anyone could save her from a random Lucius-generated attack, it was that damnable little elf. She could've done without him following her into the bathroom, though.

Back in her office, Hermione combed the report over twice. Turned out, the explosion that occurred on the Malfoy property was actually caused by a child mixing ingredients behind the counter while the clerk wasn't looking. Nobody had been hurt, thankfully, but that left Hermione with no other leads. Well, aside from the obvious.

"You know," Fergus said suddenly, making her jump, "I find the best way to brainstorm an issue is by taking a walk."

Hermione grit her teeth. "That's nice for you. But some of us work in offices, and are required to be present during working hours."

"It's no surprise you're single, really, no man could satisfy you after you've had such a massive stick lodged up your ass."

Hermione turned on the empty-looking chair where Fergus sat. "Oh my god you son of a bitch! How dare—?"

"I am merely proposing you take a break." She heard his feet hit the floor. "Come along, it's lunch hour for normal people. We'll go to that new park they've put in Diagon and throw things at birds. It relaxes Draco; perhaps you have more in common with him than consistent fuck-ups."

"I don't want to go to the park!" Hermione snarled, remembering her impromptu meeting with Narcissa. Just thinking about the woman made Hermione's gut ache. "Shouldn't I be lying low?"

"It's the last place Lucius would be," Fergus insisted. "And anyway I'm dreadfully bored with spying on these hopeless Ministry twats. I will surely lose my mind if I must spend another minute here. By the way, you may want to report the lad down the hall, he masturbates at his desk." When she ignored him, every single drawer on the numerous filing cabinets in her office sprang open with a crash.

"Your filing system is sub-par," Fergus' voice announced. "I shall now rearrange everything for you."

Hermione slammed her quill down and jumped up. "Fine, let's go to the park!"

And without another word, Fergus gripped her wrist and snapped them away.

Diagon Park was full to bursting today, much more active than the last time she visited. It must've been the unaccountably good weather. Hermione could feel Fergus keeping a hand on her calf as she stomped over to the closest food stall and ordered herself the least terrible thing on the menu. She tried to keep her mind on the Malfoy case but it was impossible. Fergus knew everything, he could easily give her whatever information she needed to condemn Malfoy—and he'd deigned to help her escape Shorecliff. So why didn't he cooperate with her now?

He kept very close as she wandered around; his fingertips never left her leg. She thought at first he was just doing it to avoid bumping into people, or maybe to reassure her he was still there, but as they neared the Hogwarts Memorial he was practically riding on her instep. She tried to shake him off and cuss him under her breath as subtly as possible, but still ended up looking like a loose mental ward patient. Some school-aged boys pointed and laughed at her and an older couple asked if she needed help finding her way home.

"No, no, I'm fine," she assured them through a lockjaw smile, hurrying off in the opposite direction towards a clearer patch of park. Hopefully nobody recognized her or took a picture or, god forbid, nobody from that all-night café was anywhere near here. Any more bizarre behavior from her and she was liable to end up in some dodgy tabloid article speculating about her drug abuse.

As she staggered along unevenly (one leg still weighed down by a belligerent elf) she came to the conclusion that, given the circumstance, her energies would best be spent convincing the little bastard to testify against Lucius in court rather than her continuing to try and find condemning evidence on her own. She was just cooking up some harebrained plot to persuade him when a small yellow ball went hurtling past her ear.

It hit the ground in the same moment the spell took effect. Hermione found her muscles move involuntarily, bringing her to an abrupt halt. She couldn't do anything, couldn't move, couldn't scream—only stand there like a marionette on loose strings and watch as Belgium went sprinting past her, chasing the ball down and snatching it up off the lawn.

The dog spared Hermione a single fleeting look, and it was amazing how much hate an animal could put behind an action; Hermione expected to be ripped to shreds right there on the lawn. But it seemed Belgium didn't care to waste any more time on her: as soon as the dog had the ball she went loping happily back past Hermione, back to something—someone—standing a short distance behind her. Someone she couldn't see, as she couldn't turn her head. It didn't strain her intellect to guess who that might be.

His footsteps were muffled by the grass and the cacophony of outdoor fun, but she still heard them, still recognized them; she stood spellbound, hyperventilating, trying to plead for help or scream for Fergus, but only air puffed out of her throat. In a second, she could see his shadow down by her shoes; two seconds more, and he was standing there in front of her, looking down at her in supreme contempt.

"Miss Granger," Lucius murmured. "Well, well… I would have never pegged you as my catfish."

Hermione couldn't answer. The spell on her was so powerful that she couldn't even cry; her eyes stung and welled up but the tears couldn't fall.

Lucius, like Narcissa, had toned down his appearance to brave the public eye. His distinctive hair had been tucked beneath a hat and he'd shucked his usual sweeping robes for slacks and a dark coat. He still had that air of importance, but it was reduced enough now that his identity wasn't obvious. To any onlookers—and there weren't many nearby—he would be nameless. This would look like a conversation, not a hostage situation.

Lucius was waiting for a response, as was his way; when she could offer none, and instead stared up at him in naked fear, a glint of certainty entered his eyes. His lips pressed into a hard line and his stare became flinty cold. Quick as a cat he tried to reach for her, to grab her forearm, but seemed unable to touch her; his fingers stopped a few inches away. Still, her flesh seemed to burn where he drew near.

Lucius' eyes narrowed just a little more. "Fergus?" he growled.

Hermione felt the elf's arms loosen around her leg. He hopped off her shoe, and his contact with her was reduced to a fingertip on the side of her knee; Hermione realized then that it was Fergus freezing her up like this, as well as keeping Lucius from touching her. Fergus, her unwieldy savior just a few hours ago, was to blame for all this. Her anger exploded so violently that her vision went red. That little shit set me up! He brought me here to be recaptured! She tried to shoot daggers at him with her eyes but wasn't sure if he saw; he was still almost completely invisible aside from a hair-thin outline that rippled as he moved. Lucius spotted the movement and honed in like a bird of prey; his expression blackened.

"Your word, Lucius," came Fergus' voice. "And quickly, too."

Lucius' jaw tightened. He ignored Belgium as she nosed his hand, trying to get him to throw the ball again. "Fine."

"I need to hear you say it," Fergus insisted.

Lucius scoffed. "Fine. I will neither maim no kill you nor the woman until you've said your part. To be frank, all of this nonsense—this public locale, all the theatrics you played last night when you set this little meeting up, and now, demanding these assurances… it's all redundant: you know I'm too curious to kill you. And you know I still need to have a chat with her." He shot Hermione a glacial look, and she quailed under his piercing eyes, at last directed right at her. Hermione Granger. There wasn't a single iota of warmth in them, not one sliver of fondness, as there had been when he'd looked at her while she impersonated Narcissa. It made her feel about an inch tall.

"And when that curiosity is satisfied, and the need is fulfilled?" To his credit, Fergus did not sound nervous; actually he sounded amused.

Lucius let out a short laugh and pinched the bridge of his nose. "You have some nerve testing me this way, you little bastard. I ought to flay you alive."

"Vacant threats aside, Lucius, if I'm to allow you back into my presence, or anywhere near the girl, I do need to hear it. And please, make it snappy—you've already lingered out here too long for comfort. Anyone could spot you." There was a sharp warning in his voice.

Lucius scoffed again. "Good god, fine! I will give you one week. One week, and I won't harm a single hair on your heads, regardless of what happens today. And after… if things go sour, and I am not convinced they won't, it would be enough time for you to go into hiding." His face hardened again. "And if things do go sour—say, if you have some other betrayal in store for me—rest assured that you will need all the time you can get to escape me. Fool me once, Fergus."

"I'll start by saying it's terribly insulting to suggest I've betrayed anyone, least of all you," Fergus sniffed. "You'll be eating your words soon enough once you hear what I have to say."

"We'll see." Lucius put a hand on Belgium's head. "Back to the manor?"

Hermione's heart leapt up into her throat; she tried again to fight Fergus' spell, but she might as well have been pushing against a stone wall.

"No," Fergus said sharply. "We go to the girl's place. I meant for us to stay there for the time being. It is, at the moment, safer."

A ringing filled Hermione's ears; she redoubled her efforts to break free. Her eyes were again so full of tears she couldn't see. Oh Merlin, no. God, no. Fergus was going to bring Lucius into her home. The place where she lived. Even with some flimsy assurance that Lucius wouldn't kill her in the next week, she'd have no place to go to escape him afterwards; somehow she'd have to give these two psychopaths the slip and go to Harry. Confess everything and seek sanctuary with him or the Weasleys. It was her only chance.

Lucius looked skeptical. "How can it possibly be safer?"

"I spent all yesterday fortifying it. No one would ever suspect you were there, and even if they somehow found out, breaking in would be an impossibility."

"Hmm. Well, I cannot fault your thoroughness. Nor your vigilance." His eyes flicked briefly to Hermione. "I assume by her current state that Miss Granger did not know of, nor consent to, your ludicrous little scheme?"

"In my frail old age, I fear that I simply forgot to inform her."

Hermione had never wanted to scream so badly.

"Well, the matter is settled, then," Fergus went on. There was a hint of movement and then Lucius' sleeve fluttered as if caught in a small breeze. "I will apparate us back. Do you have Belgium?" Lucius gripped her collar, and at the same moment, Belgium shot Hermione a murderous glare. Bizarrely, Hermione recalled that her lease didn't permit dogs. She nearly panicked at the thought of being evicted until she reminded herself that there were bigger issues at hand here.

"Very good," said Fergus. "Let's go."

He turned, and they all vanished with him.

The Catfish

A Harry Potter Story
by Miss Dasti

Part 11 of 25

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