Mission Not Quite Possible
“But there has to be another way!” Hermione pleaded desperately.
“I’m sorry Hermione, but we’ve been contemplating this matter for weeks now. We considered Veritaserum but it’s not ready; finding the ingredients and brewing the potion will take so long, by the time we’re done, the Easter holiday will be over. If we miss this chance it would be impossible to find another one soon.” Lupin explained “Every minute matters.” he added quietly.
“If Dumbledore would let me interrogate the kid myself we won’t need to go through this bloody hassle, I tell you!” Mad-Eye Moody barked from the corner of the room.
“I think...Dumbledore made it very clear that you were not to use any unforgivable curses on the kid, Moody.” Lupin reminded him, his voice showing that he was trying hard to control his temper.
“The kid you’re referring to is plotting for something sinister, we all know that!” Moody thundered at the man in front of him.
“Yes, but he’s still a Hogwarts student.” Tonks interjected finally “And I think Hermione is capable of carrying out the mission perfectly.” she added softly, smiling at Hermione who just sat there listening to them half attentively. Her mind was reeling with the news she had just been told.
When she said she was willing to do anything to help the order, she never thought it was going that far! She hated love potions. She hated Draco Malfoy. But when the two got mixed together, that was recipe for disaster. And to add insult to injury, out of all the people in the world it was Remus Lupin and Mad-Eye Moody who took it upon themselves to explain the nature of her mission, could a person die of embarrassment?
“I think we have covered the important parts. Tonks will cover the details with you. The two of us have to go now. Good luck Ms. Granger, we all trust you.” Lupin smiled kindly at the young witch before urging Moody out of the room.
“Hermione, I know it’s not an easy task, but all of us had to go out of their way at some point. It’s for the greater good.” Tonks placed her hand over Hermione’s, her look sympathetic “At least the castle would be almost empty, so you won’t have to worry about people noticing anything. Everybody is going home for the holiday this year...parents have become really worried about their children. They don’t leave them at school as much as they used to.” she remarked sadly.
“We’ve done some...searching.” she almost giggled, “I have to admit it was my favorite part, obviously Malfoy has a special fondness of a certain type of chocolate.” she added, reaching for something in her bag.
Chocolate! Hermione mused, this keeps getting more and more odd!
Tonks was now holding the bar of chocolate, it was wrapped in green and laced with a silver ribbon. A card hanged from the ribbon and Hermione held it up to read it.
"So you could have at least one of your favorite things while I’m away. Pansy" the card read.
“Do you actually think Pansy Parkinson would say that? Even she should have more dignity than calling herself a...a thing!” Hermione was so mad at what she read that her voice ended up louder than she intended it to be. This card was degrading!
“It is something Pansy Parkinson would say, and anyway, I don’t think Malfoy would really give it much thought. He’d only be interested in knowing who sent it, and the handwriting looks typical to hers. Professor Snape was kind enough to provide us with some of her homework parchments, not the brightest girls if you ask me.” Tonks grinned.
“This has just the right amount to keep him under the potion’s effect for four days, anymore and it would’ve been risky. I really hope you can get the information we need as soon as possible.” Tonks explained, more serious now.
“And this flask has some forgetfulness potion, the amount is just right to erase those four days. Mad-Eye Moody did a great job, to be honest.” A hint of pride laced Tonks’ voice as she presented Hermione with a small flask.
“I’m going to his room now to place the bar. Tonight or tomorrow morning at maximum, he will have eaten it, we’re positive.” she sounded so sure!
“But what if he didn’t?” Hermione asked hopefully.
“He will, Hermione. If you find your favorite treat wrapped and waiting for you on your bedside cabinet with a card from your boyfriend, wouldn’t you eat it?” Tonks reasoned with her.
“Pansy Parkinson is Malfoy’s...girlfriend?” Hermione wasn’t surprised at the choice of person; she was surprised Malfoy was capable of harboring feelings to anybody at all.
“Well, they are very close according to what people say; she’s the only female friend he has. And anyway, it would have been too odd if the card held the name of any of his male friends, don’t you think?” Tonks laughed almost childishly and Hermione couldn’t help but laugh back at the older witch’s remark.
“You’re right, I never took Nott and Zabini for the chocolate kind of people” Hermione grimaced comically.
“One more thing, Hermione. Nobody but the people who were in this room can know anything about this...well, and Dumbledore of course, but nobody else.” Tonks warned
“Not even Harry?” Hermione whined. Harry was her best friend she needed to talk to him about this, she was already feeling down that they’d all be spending the holiday at the Burrow without her.
“I’m afraid not, sorry Hermoine.” Tonks said with an apologetic smile.
“Alright.” Hermione said finally with a sigh.
“Great. I’m off to do my part now, good luck with yours.” Tonks winked at Hermione before leaving the room.
Hermione lied down in her bed and closed her eyes wishing the morning never came.
The next day, she reluctantly got out of bed, had an intentionally long shower before dragging herself down to the hall, the castle seemed so spacious with very few people still there. She could spot a couple of Hufflepuffs at a distant table, three or four Ravenclaws were chatting animatedly and no Slytherins were to be found.
Except for one very familiar Slytherin who had just entered the great hall. Any hope Hermione ever had, that Malfoy wouldn’t notice the chocolate bar or just wouldn’t fancy it, evaporated as the pale blond beamed at her.
And so it begins, Hermione groaned inwardly.