Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter, nor any of the characters from the books or movies. I do not make any money from the writing of this story.

Hermione is a late bloomer and doesn’t present as an Omega until her 7th year at Hogwarts. She is now surrounded by appealing Alphas, and she isn’t any better at this new way socializing than she was at any other kind.

Warning: This story contains sexual situations.

Rating: MA

A/N-  This fic is my first try at the whole Alpha/Beta/Omega thing.  I hope you all enjoy.

Chapter 1: Presenting
Chapter 2: We are Friends
Chapter 3: Make Your Life Hell
Chapter 4: This is Life
Chapter 5: Sleep and other Hazards

Chapter 1: Presenting

Hermione smiled as she breathed in the scent of the books at Flourish and Blotts.  Seventh year was going to be better than any of the previous years. She was Head Girl this year, and she couldn’t wait to tell her two best friends.  They were meeting later today at the Leaky Cauldron, and after being in the Mediterranean all summer, she missed them both keenly. Letters were just not the same.

She knew better than to think either of them would be interested in buying books with her so she had decided to come to Diagon Alley early so Hermione could enjoy her favorite part of school shopping without the boys complaining that she was taking too long.

She walked slowly up and down each and every aisle of the store, sometimes she would stop and pick up a book from her list while other times she got distracted by a book that just sounded interesting.

She was standing in an aisle so engrossed in a book of the University level Arithmancy that when the strange pressed himself up against her back and his nose brushed the back of her neck she was caught completely and utterly off guard.

“Mmmm, you smell like applewood and old books.”  He growled in a tone that made her knees shake a bit.

Her breath caught a bit, and she was surrounded by the smell of newsprint, coffee, and wet earth.  Her mind went completely blank as she tried to understand what was going on. When he brain did finally restart, she turned swiftly in the man’s arms and glared up at him.

“We’re in a bookstore, it could be the smell isn’t me.”  She said stepping out of his grasp and using the book in her hands as a shield against her chest.

“Oh, it is you, my sweetling.  I can tell.” He said with a smile as he licked his lips.

“What do you think you’re doing exactly?”  She asked keeping her glare even as instincts told her to press herself against the stranger.  Where was this coming from?

He looked at her for a long moment as if she were particularly slow.  He took a step towards her as a slow smirk formed on strikingly handsome features “What’s your name my little Omega?”  He nearly purred.

“I-I’m not…” She started and shook her head.  Sometimes living the summer away from wizardkind she could forget about the strange social order that magical people had.  She had read many books on the subject of what was commonly referred to as wizard puberty, but as of last year, she had not presented as one of the three archetypes.

“Oh yes, you are.  I’m surprised you don’t have every Alpha and Beta male in a block radius coming in here to sniff you.”  He said as his eyes traveled over her and he placed a hand on the shelf next to her head. “You smell terrific.”

She had to admit to herself the man smelt perfect.  She could feel her body reacting to his pheromones and even the way he used his large frame to full advantage.  He was a peak specimen of an Alpha male, and she had the urge to bare her neck to him.

“Does that line ever work?”  She asked because she was Hermione Granger and was not one to let herself fall into a biological trap just because her body wanted her to.

He growled and narrowed her eyes, he didn’t seem to like her tone.  She held in the whimper and stood her ground as she looked back up into his eyes.

“What’s your name my little Omega with a mouth?”  He nearly hissed as he dark eyes held her in place.

“Hermione Granger, what’s yours?”  She asked as she refused to be cowed by any of his Alpha posturing.  This was the twentieth century, and they were in the middle of a public place.  She knew he wouldn’t try anything against her will.

“Edvard Tollim at your service.”  He said with a charming smile that probably had a lot of girls spreading their legs for the man.  His hand moved up, and his fingers brushed over a spot of Hermione’s neck that made her let out an involuntary gasp.  “Why does your name sound familiar?” He asked as his thumb continued to brush over what she would know from her reading was one of her scent glands.

She wanted to tell him everything about being Harry Potter’s best friend.  The desire to give into him only grew as he touched her like he was.

“I wouldn’t know.”  She snapped instead and jerked away from his hand.  “It’s very rude to do that to a stranger.” She said, and her body was shaking from the force of her instincts.  “Please step back.” She added firmly and glanced around for an avenue of escape.

“Well aren’t you a surprise?”  He asked seeming both annoyed and delighted by her reaction.  “I’m staying with some family friends right now; you should come to visit me so we can get to know each other better.  Or I could come to visit you?” He offered his eyes traveling over her once more.

“I’ll be heading to Hogwarts in a couple of days, so I don’t think that will be possible.”  She said firmly, as she picked up her shopping basket. “I actually have friends waiting on me now.”  She said not knowing why she felt the need to give the man a reason for leaving.

He picked up one of the books form her basket and looked it over without even bothering to ask.  “You must be taking advanced Athurmancy this year.” He said as he opened the book.

“Yes, which means I need that book.”  She said as she tried to snatch it back from him, but he turned to keep it out of her grasp.

“No.”  He said tucking the book under his arm and turning away from her towards the Athermancy section of the store.

She glanced back toward the checkout desk before following him.  At the very least she could get herself another copy of the required reading for the class.

“Nenyor’s book is useless.  It’s a crime they are still using it to teach.  If you’re not a complete imbecile you will want…”  he paused as he scanned the shelves. “…ah Wenlock’s book.” He said as he pulled the thicker volume from the shelf and put her original selection away.  “It has everything that the Nenyor book has, only it’s correct and proofed.”

She looked between him and the book her held out skeptically.  Nenyor’s book was on her reading list. She did not like the idea of deviating from the reading list.  He raised an eyebrow at her as if he was giving her a personal challenge. She ground her teeth as she looked between the offered book and the one she was meant to get.

“Fine.” He said and lowered the book.  “I’ll buy you the Wenlock book.” He said looking over her in a way that made Hermione feel his displeasure.

“I did not ask or do I need your help Mr. Tollim.” She said as she held her breath before dashing forward to grab the book she wanted.  She moved back again before he could touch her and headed towards the counter to pay for her selection.

As she got into line, her shoulders dropped as she smelled the man’s now familiar scent directly behind her.  He wasn’t making a move to touch or talk to her again, but his looming presence was all consuming. It felt like it was seeping into her bones and making her thoughts distant and unfocused.

She had a powerful urge to lean back into him and allow him to wrap himself around her.  She wanted to expose her neck to him and show her submission. Hermione shook her head as the line moved her body positively vibrating as she fought the new and powerful instincts.

When it was finally her turn, she set her books on the counter and forced herself not to look at him.  She would fight with every fiber in her bring not to give into the base feelings. She was Hermione Jean Granger, and she would not be ruled by anything but logic.

She nearly ran from the store once her purchases were made.  As the fresh air hit her, she let how a relieved sigh when it cleared his scent from her system.  She blinked a few times and swallowed before remember she needed to meet the boys and rushed off towards the Leaky Cauldron.

‘Mr. Tollim’ smirked as he watched Hermione’s retreating back.  It had been a long while since he had found an omega so worthy of his attention.  Since returning to the world of the living a few years ago, he had not had the chance to express that side of himself adequately.  It would be a joy to hunt the girl and make her his. She had willingly given him more than enough information he would need to find her again.

He looked down at the book in his hand with a smile.  If she were as smart as he suspected, then she would realize its value as soon as she gave into reading it.

Tucking the book under his arm once again he strolled down the Diagon Alley as if he didn’t have a care in the world.  He smiled at the pretty witches who giggled at him, none smart enough to see the wolf hidden neatly behind the mask of a sheep.

He went on a few more unhurried errands before Apparating to the edge of Malfoy Manor.  When he had first risen to his current state, he had stayed at the manor with the ever sniveling Malfoys, but it took him very little time to find a place of his own.  No, he was not here to stay, but he felt that they would be a valuable source of information when it came to his newest prey.

He opened the front door and strode into the entrance hall, not bothering to knock or wait for one of their filthy little house elves to come and collect him.  As he crossed the threshold he let the illusions of his former self, slide away like a snake shedding its skin.

He met the delectate Narcissa first, and she bowed her head in a beautiful show of submission only the most graceful Omega was capable.  Of course, the woman was mated to Lucius, so he had no desire for her. If he had, he would merely kill the Malfoy patriarch and take her, but he had never liked such fragile seeming things.  They broke much too quickly.

“I am looking for your son, Lady Malfoy.  Is he home?” He asked looking down at her she noticed her sudden stillness.  She was afraid of him, but she feared for her son more. But did she worry enough to defy him?

“He’s told everything he knows about the Potter boy, my Lord.”  She said softly instead of answering him.

“I am sure he is a loyal subject, Lady Malfoy.”  He said trying to put her at ease. “But I have new questions about one of his classmates.  This is his final year at Hogwarts, is it not?” He asked as if it was a casual conversation.

“Yes my Lord.  We are proud to say Draco will be Head Boy this year.”  She said unable to keep from boasting over her boy.

“I too was Head Boy in my time.  But that only means he is well positioned to answer my questions.  Where is he?” He asked again, making the inpatients in his tone clear.

“On the Quidditch field my Lord.  I will have an elf bring him to you in the den?”  She offered before he could make the request.

“My time is valuable.”  He added as he moved past her towards the den.  Knowing he did not wish to wait would moving them all the more quickly.

He made himself comfortable in Lucius chair before setting the book down on a short table to his left.  Now that he had nothing else to focus on memories on Hermione’s delectable smell washed over him. He had wanted to bite her right there in the store.  She was something special; he had never had the drive to actually claim an Omega before.

“My Lord,”  Draco spoke from the door, and Voldemort motioned for him to enter.

“Young Master Malfoy.”  He greeted him as if they were friends.  “I hear congratulations are in order.” He said placing an easy smile on his pale lips.

“Thank you, Sir.”  He said bowing his head, but his whole form was tense.

Voldemort took in a slow breath, and the smile turned cold as he realized why the matriarch was so keen to protect her son.

“You’ve presented as an Alpha.”  He said in the same pleasant tone that he had used to congratulate the boy.

“Yes my Lord.”  Draco agreed nervously.

“Kneel.”  He ordered getting to his feet in a swift motion.  He had to deal severely with Alphas within his ranks.  They were valuable members, but they needed to be tamed, to understand who they served.

He watched as the boy fought with his instincts to force himself to his knees.  He was pleased with the show; most had far more trouble following that order the first time.

“You have control over your baser instincts.”  He said as he circled the young Malfoy. “In the future, this will make you a stronger Alpha, than just giving into what the beast wants.”  He explained as he watched the boy struggle to stay on his knees. “I find it also helps to let young Alphas know their place. You know your place, don’t you Draco?”

“Yes my Lord.”  He ground out through clenched teeth.

“Yes, I would think so.  The Malfoy line has always been stronger than most.  But this is not in fact why I asked you here today Draco.”  He said stroking the boy’s ego as he did as he was ordered. “I wish to know more about one of your classmates.”

“I will continue to report on all of Potter’s actions at school my Lord.”  He said as Voldemort continued to circle. He did not move from his kneeling position; it seemed he was smart enough to realize the test wasn’t over.

“Good.  You are a useful spy, just like your godfather.”  He agreed with a nod of his head. “But I had an encounter with another of your classmates.  Her name was familiar to me, but I can’t place the context. Tell me all you know of Hermione Granger.”

Voldemort watched the sneer form on the boy’s face.  “You know her because Granger is Potter’s mudblood sidekick,”  Draco said as he clenched his fists at his sides.

“Potter’s mudblood,”  Voldemort repeated to himself, a small smile still on his nearly invisible lips.  “Well doesn’t she get more interesting. Tell me Draco, has she presented yet?” He asked though he already knew the answer.  She seemed surprised by his attention, so he could only assume it was a new occurrence.

“Not that I know my Lord.  Most assume she will present Alpha, but I think she’ll be just another Beta.”  He said with a continued look of disdain.

Voldemort tapped his wand against his thigh as he thought over what to do next.  He desired her, his own Alpha instincts pushing him towards the girl. If she was a mudblood, there was no way he could claim her, not that he had ever claimed a mate.

“What else can you tell me about her?”  He asked moving back to sit down as he made the boy continue to kneel.

“I’ll probably have to share a common room with her this year.  They’ll probably make her Head Girl since she is top of our class.”  He reported with a frown.

“Than that will place you well to keep an eye on her activities for me.”  He said tapping his wand against his knee as he glanced over at the book. “I assume she despises you as much as you despise her?”

“Why would you care, she is nothing, my Lord,”  Draco said looking up at his superior for the first time.

“She is an omega Draco.  And I find I wish to enjoy her.”  Voldemort admitted in a dangerous tone.  “I do not like others touching what is mine.”  He growled, genuinely showing his own Alpha side for the first time.

Draco lowered hunched a little trying to get lower as the more powerful Alpha showed his strength.  “Yes my Lord.” He said understanding the threat perfectly. “I will warn the others.” He added thinking quickly.

Chapter 2: We are Friends

The moment Hermione entered the Leaky Cauldron, she was hit by a new wave of smells both excellent and horrible.  There was at least a few Alphas in the room and maybe even another omega, but she could also smell stale beer and a fix of several wizards body odor.  She wondered if meeting an Alpha had triggered or awoken this in her?

Spotting her friends, she dashed over to their table with her hand still firmly over her mouth and nose.  Ron was giving her a knowing look, but Harry’s attention was in the opposite direction.

“Everyone knew you would present Alpha; Harry was just complaining too.”  He said motioning to their friend with a nod. “I came out Beta this summer, so it’s not quite so bad for me.  Got to get a lot closer for my senses to take hold.”

Hermione blushed at his assumption, but by the time she absorbed all of what he said Harry was looking at her with an intensity that knocked the breath out of her.

“She isn’t Alpha.”  He said to their friend as his hand reached out and pulled her right into his lap.  His nose brushed the same spot on the back of her neck that the Tollim’s had, and she let out a small gasp.

“Harry.”  She said unsure if she wanted him to let her go or pull her closer.  Her friend had wrapped his arms around her tightly as if protecting her from everything else in the bar.  All she could think for a moment was how safe she felt with him there. Harry smelled like the winter wind and something almost metallic, and she wanted to lose herself in it.

“Shit, guys, w-we should get out of here.” Ron was saying, and it took her a full beat to remember why.

“Mine,”  Harry growled as Ron moved to help her out of his lap.  The possessive act was enough to push her out of the daze.

“Harry let go.”  She snapped and pulled herself out of his lap.  He kept a hand on her and swallowed, when she looked back at him he seemed sheepish and dropped his hands altogether.

“I don’t know why I did that, sorry Hermione.”  He said as he ran fingers through his air.

“I do, and it means she shouldn’t be in here,”  Ron said seeming exasperated with his friends. He motioned to the door, not knowing what his friend would do if he touched Hermione again so soon.  “We need to get her out of here, no telling who else is an Alpha.”

Both Harry and Hermione nodded before they followed him back out into Diagon Alley.

“Smartest witch of her age doesn’t know she shouldn’t go into a pub like that if she presents omega?”  Ron nearly yelled once they were out into the open air.

“What was I supposed to do, you were waiting for me?”  Hermione snapped back. “And I am still getting used to it.  I only just found out at the bookstore!”

“What happened?”  Harry asked as he looked at her with a pained expression.  It felt wrong that he was standing so far away, why was he rejecting her like that?

“An Alpha tried to pick me up.”  She said with her chin up to show him she would not be affected by his rejection.  Other Alphas wanted her even if he did not.

Harry growled, and his fist clenched at his side.  “Mine.” He said taking a step towards her.

“Shite guys!  Focus!” Ron snapped at them both and Hermione jumped as she remembered he was even there.  “It doesn’t seem like any harm was done. No one followed us out anyone, so no one figured who the omega was.”

“There was another omega in there.”  Both Harry and Hermione said at once, and Ron just shook his head.

“Doesn’t matter.  We should go do out shopping; only we have to be careful about it.”  He said being the voice of reason for the first time in their friendship.  “But let me write to Mum first, so she knows what to expect when we head back to the Burrow.  Charlie’s home visiting and he is an Alpha and still unmated.”

Hermione nodded and worked to focus on what he was saying as her eyes kept getting drawn back to Harry.  The pull was stronger with him than it had been with Tollim, but that could simply be because she already trusted Harry.

“Or we could just take her back to the Burrow now, and Harry and I could get Hermione’s shopping done,”  Ron said finally pulling Hermione’s full attention on him.

“I am not an invalid Ronald Weasley.”  She snapped putting her hands on her hips which seemed to make Ron smile.

“Glad to see you haven’t’ changed too much.”  He said still grinning. “I was worried there for a moment.  “As long as you stay in open areas I think it’ll be fine.” He added nodding to her.

She rolled her eyes and looked over at Harry with a frown.  “Are you alright?”

Harry cleared his throat.  “Just something I’m going to have to get used to, you smell quite nice, and it’s a bit overwhelming.”  He said looking more himself as well.

“It is probably hard because you two don’t have anyone to warn you about these things before they actually happen,”  Ron said looking at his friends. “I had Charlie and the twins to tell me about being an Alpha, and Ginny presented last summer as an omega.”

“I remember,”  Hermione said frowning as she thought of how her friend had dealt with presenting in the early side.  “At least we are spending a few days at the Burrow so Ginny and I can talk.”

Harry got a pained look on his face.  “Two pretty omegas under one roof.” He said seeming more to himself.  “Maybe me staying with you isn’t a good idea.” He said looking to Ron.

“Don’t worry mate; we will just make sure you’re never alone with them,”  Ron promised though he suddenly seemed a bit tense himself.

Hermione rolled her eyes and hit both boys in the arms.  “We are here for school shopping.” She reminded them and lifted her bag of books just as a visual reminder.

“Yeah yeah.  So where should we go first?”  Ron asked, and thing settled back into a normal rhythm after that.

They collected everything they would need for their final time at school, and they fell into an easy conversation about the coming year.  Harry entered every store first to make sure it was safe for Hermione, and she found she had to get them to collect a few of their things.  At the end of the day both boys wanted to go into Weasleys Wizard Wheezes, and since they knew the proprietors were both unmated Alphas, Hermione decided to stay out on the street with the bags.

She found a comfortable bench to sit on and pulled out Arithmancy book so she could read while the boys waisted their time with junk and tricks.  She was frowning deeply, as she was pulled into the text she did not notice the student’s approach.

“Hermione?”  He asked, and she jumped a looked as she looked up at the newcomer with wide innocent eyes.

“Terry.”  She said with a smile as she pushed her hair back from her face to greet the Ravenclaw.  “Ready for our NEWTs year?” She asked with natural comfort.

The boy took in a slow breath as if he had to think about it, and paused as his eyes shifted from her face to her neck.  It hadn’t even been a day since she first learned she had presented as omega and she could already tell precisely what was going through the man’s head.

“I-I’m r-ready.”  He said as he took the seat next to her.

When he got closer, even in the open air, she could smell him.  Her thoughts were confirmed as she found herself wanting to lean into him.

“Maybe we could study together this year?”  Terry asked as his hand moving to her knee.

She looked at the hand and wondered if all Alphas were going to start just touching her in personal ways without asking.  Terry’s hand was warm, and it wasn’t exactly unpleasant to feel he cared. She found herself looking him over and accessing his physical appeal.  He was pleasing to her.

“That could be nice.  You know Harry and Ron aren’t exactly as interested in their academics.”  She nodded and was very aware when the hand slowly moved up her leg.

“You should go for it,”  Ron said, and he wasn’t entirely sure what they were talking about.

“What?”  He asked looking up from the itching powder he has been pretending to consider.  All of his thoughts were on Hermione. The way she smelled, the way her body had felt against his.  He knew there was a biological instinct that was messing with his head. But it was stronger than he had ever considered.

“Hermione.”  Ron pressed knowingly.

“What about her?  Is there something wrong?”  Harry asked looking towards the door; maybe they shouldn’t have left her out there alone. Perhaps it would be better if he went to check on her and made sure she was safe.

“No.  Harry I think you should pursue her.  Like you two should date.” Ron said snapping his attention back to his friend.

“Wouldn’t that make our friendship weird?”  He asked because Ron was the last person he thought would ever suggest any of that.

“Look.  She’s an omega now if you don’t go for her, then someone else will, and then they’ve broken up the team.  Better if you two are dating so that she doesn’t get dragged around by some Alpha we don’t like.” Ron said waving his hand aimlessly.

Harry licked his lips and looked back to the door and then to Ron.  “I want her Ron.” He admitted in an undertone. “It is stronger then I thought it could be.  I can still taste her scent.”

“Who’s scent?”  One of the twins popped up seeming out of nowhere.  Harry was sure they lurked around the shop invisibly just to mess with people.

“It doesn’t matter,”  Harry said smiling at him because he didn’t want to talk about Hermione with another Alpha.  He smelt the other twin before he spoke and turned just in time to see him grinning at Harry.

“Is our Harry finally presented as an Alpha?”  The second one asked with his hand over his head.  “I told you this day would come, Fred.”

“That you did George that you did,”  Fred said with a grin. “So who’s the girl?  We will have to approve of course.” He added more seriously.  “Nothing but the best for our Harry.”

“It’s Hermione.”  Ron cut in, and Harry glared at him.

“She’s omega?”  George asked seeming delighted and surprised.  “Where is she, we should welcome her properly.”  He said with a wink to his twin which made Harry growl.

“Mine.”  He threatened through gritted teeth and stepped towards the twin.

“Easy there, easy there,”  Fred said putting up his arms.  “This is new for you, so it tends to be overpowering, just relax Harry.  We wouldn’t touch her like that.” He said sounding serious for the first time.

Harry slowed his breathing and looked between the twins again.  “Sorry guys.” He said swallowing and taking a step back from them.  “She is just a bit in my head right now.” He said and looked to the door.

“Where is she?”  Fred asked this time as he snuffled the air and looked around.

“Waiting outside because this place gets too crowded and you two are Alphas,”  Ron explained, and the twins frowned.

“Outside by herself?”  They asked together, and the two younger boys nodded.  Harry worried again and took a step towards the door.

“Maybe I should check on her,”  Harry suggested as he didn’t like the look the twins were giving them.

“Come on; it’s pretty open out there.  You’ve all told me before that it’s hard to catch anyone smell in the open air.

“You just have to get a bit closer,”  George said with a shrug. “She’ll probably be fine.  Hopefully, she won’t be completely swarmed when you two are done with shopping for our delights.”

Harry was two the door before he realized they might be messing with him.  But as he looked out just to check on Hermione, he found that she was sitting very close to some boy on the bench.  He growled as he noticed the boy was actually touching her leg and she was smiling at him.

Harry saw red as he left the shop and crossed the street to find out more of what was going on.  When he recognized the smell of Alpha, he bit his tongue so he wouldn’t growl.

Hermione smiled as she noticed his approach.  “Harry! Are you guys already done?” She asked hopefully.  “Terry and I were talking about NEWT prep.” She said motioning to the boy that Harry now recognized.

Terry looked as tense as Harry felt and the two boys started to size each other up.  “Yes. I was suggesting we form a study group for our more advanced classes.”

“Of course, a study group.”  Harry echoed, and his eyes moved down to where Terry was still touching her leg.

Hermione sighed and got to her feet.  “Yes. A study group.” She said sounding annoyed.

“Maybe I’ll join,”  Harry said definitely.

“You’re more than welcome to, Potter,”  Terry said with a smirk and crossed his arms over his chest.  “I would love to get the chance for some mental sparing.”

“I’ll see you there, Boot.”  He responded as if it were a threat.

Hermione rolled her eyes and shook her head.  She took his arm and pulled him away from the Ravenclaw and back towards the store.

“See you at school Terry.”  She called back before she gave him her full focus.  “You like Terry, what do you think you’re doing?” She asked, and he had her suddenly pressed against the front window of the shop.

“Mine,”  Harry growled against her neck, wanting to lick her scent gland and mark her as his omega.  Only the fact he knew how mad she would be, held him back. He breathed in her scent instead, and she pressed her body against him.

“Oh.”  She gasped as she tilted her head to give him better access to her neck.  “Please?” She whimpered her small hands grasping his shirt.

“Mine?”  He asked, letting his breath tickle the sweet spot of her neck.

“Yes, yes..” She purred and whimpered under him.  “What? No.” She added after a moment and shook her head.  “Harry James Potter you will step back so I can think.” She ordered firmly.

He sighed and took a step back as he frowned down at her.  He didn’t give her much room, but his body wasn’t pressed to hers any longer.

She looked up into his eyes with her big doe brown orbs and licked her lips.  “What do you think you are doing?” She asked, and her hand moved from grasping his shirt to pressing on his chest.

“I’m sorry.”  He said as he looked down at her.  He noticed for the first time how much shorter she was than him just then.  “I’m sorry I was acting stupid, but I don’t like it when other Alphas touch you.”  He said trying honesty.

“You have no actual claim on me.”  She pointed out with a frown.

“Let me lick you and I will.”  He said ready to spring forward once again.

“No.”  She said, but it sounded as if it pained her to say.  “What would Ron think? We are all friends Harry. I don’t want that to change.”  She said firmly.

He frowned and thought about pointing out that Ron supported them getting together, but he wasn’t sure if she would appreciate the reason why.

He licked his lips and nodded slowly.  “I would never do anything you don’t want.”  He said taking a real step back from her. “But I am not going to stop trying.”  He added as a warning.

Chapter 3: Make Your Life Hel

Hermione smiled as she noted that Ginny was waiting for them in the front yard.  She needed another girl to talk to after the day she had, and Ginny already had a year of experience being an omega.  She knew somehow it would help to talk to her longtime friend.

The redhead girl stood as the three approached and put her hand firmly in front of her nose and mouth.

“You two go inside.”  She ordered as she took steps away from the front door so the boys could pass.  ‘Hold your breath till you get in there.” She added eyeing Harry.

“Yes, Ma’am.”  Harry saluted with a grin and made a big show of holding his breath as he dashed past.

Once they were safely away, Ginny took in a breath and sniffed in the direction of the door.  “Can you belave I used t have a crush on that prat?” She asked playfully. “But he does smell good, doesn’t he?”

“I would say he smells like flying, but I’m not completely sure,”  Hermione said glad at how relaxed about it Ginny was being.

“Yeah, I can get behind that.”  Ginny nodded with a grin and took her friend’s hand.  “Everyone thought you’d be an Alpha!” She said though she looked very pleased.

“Wouldn’t it be easier if I was,”  Hermione said with a frown as they headed away from the house for a walk towards the hills.

“Nah.  Then we probably wouldn’t be close friends anymore.  I’ve had the hardest time even being near female Alphas.”  She admitted with a frown. “And they have a hard time with me, unless their gay, then it just gets awkward, cause I’m not.”

“But it’s going to be awkward with Harry.”  She said as she looked towards the house and then back at her friend.  “He’s tried claiming me twice today. It’s like he has completely forgotten we’re friends.”

“Oh, he hasn’t forgotten Hermione,”  Ginny assured her. “It is probably why he is so keen on you now.  There was already feelings, and now there is sex drive.” She said winking at the last word.

Hermione groaned and covered her face.  “It doesn’t feel right. No, I take that back, it feels so very right, which is why it doesn’t feel right at all.  What about Ron?”

“What about Ron?” Ginny said knowingly.  “You were hot on his tail just a couple of years ago.  What happened to we are friends with that whole thing?”

Hermione huffed and shook her head.  “That ended horribly and almost ruined the three of us!  I don’t want to go through that again.”

“Well, then who?”  Ginny asked retaking her friend’s arm.

“Who what?”  Hermione asked feeling dumb.

“Do you have someone in mind?”  She asked looking at her friend more seriously.  “It is best for omegas to find someone to pair up with, even if it is just for a few weeks at a time.  At the very least for heats.”

“Oh, Merlin I forgot about the heats.”  She said in a miserable tone. “I don’t want to be attached to some guy.”  She whined as she looked away from her friend. “I haven’t seen you with anyone.”

“I skip around a bit.  Best not to let one Alpha get too attached or he thinks he owns you.”  She said with a shrug. “Scent marking lasts a couple of weeks, and it keeps most unwanted Alphas away for the most part.”

“What does that involve exactly?”  Hermione asked all the books she had read didn’t get into what everything entailed.  She knew about scent marking, but not how it was done.

“Usually a bit of snogging and then he licks your neck and sometimes your wrists,”  Ginny said without shame. “I’ve never actually shagged any of them.” She said shaking her head.  “Yet.” She added with a laugh.

“What about your heats?”  Hermione asked blushing as she realized how personal that question was.

“Well at school they give you a potion during your heat that helps to calm things down.  They tell you to take the summer off of the potion because long-term use isn’t good. Mom took me to a muggle store to pick out something to get me through.  I am sure she would do the same for you.” Ginny said with a smile. “I think she may be planning to talk to you about it tonight.”

“So that sort of thing works.  I read in The Omega Cycle that you can’t handle it yourself, that it takes an Alpha to satisfy those urges.”  Hermione said feeling the heat in her face as she imagined going to some sex toy store with Mrs. Weasley.

“Mum’s a Beta.  Their heats aren’t so bad, but she said, talk like that is just what men want you to think.”  Ginny explained with a laugh. “I’ve got to say she is right, but it does help that I’m only around my brothers for most of the summer.  Harry is going to mess things up a bit. Shit, I am going to be dreaming about Harry fucking Potter for the next few nights” Ginny groaned.

Hermione blushed as she could completely understand the thought.  She was wondering if she was more likely to dream about Harry or Tollim.  The idea of either of them made her blood heat. At least at school, she would have a private room she wouldn’t be in such close quarters with an Alph…

“What is the likelihood that the Head Boy is an Alpha?”  Hermione asked under her breath.

“They usually are.  It’s something about leadership qualities or some shite.  Are you Head Girl?” Ginny asked with a broad smile as she bumped her friend’s arm.

“Yes.  Which proves that you don’t need to be an Alpha to have such qualities.”  She said as she hoped the Head Boy would at least be a Beta.

“Very true.”  Ginny nodded sagely.  “But you are doomed.” She added with a laugh as she tried to tease her friend.  “Do you know the most likely candidates in your year?” She asked seeing the misery on Hermione’s face.

Hermione took a slow breath.  “It’s usually a Prefect. Ron didn’t get it, or he would have said something.  That would leave Goldstein, MacMillan, and Malfoy.” She said thoughtfully.

“Isn’t Malfoy second in your year?”  Ginny asked unhelpfully.

Hermione groaned and nodded.  “I heard him talking about how the men in his family were always Alphas dating back to the middle ages.  What are the changes that he is one of the rare male omegas like us?” She asked pleadingly.

“Well, at least it is likely to be someone you hate.  That does help with keeping your head. Zabini tried to corner me this one-time last year, and I kept my head enough to knee him in the balls.”

“Did you report him?”  Hermione asked sounding alarmed.

“As long as Alphas don’t try to mate you there isn’t much an omega can do.  They get a pass because of the hormones.” Ginny said with disgust.

Hermione frowned and shook her head remember reading pretty much the same thing.  She took in a slow breath and pulled her friend closer. “Well you know you can always come to me, and I will hex his bollocks right off.”  She said with a nod.

“Don’t worry Mione, he knows better now,”  Ginny said with a smirk.

The next day Mrs. Weasley took Hermione to a muggle sex toy store just like Ginny had warned.  It wasn’t as bad as Hermione fears, as the matriarch kept the whole conversation quite clinical.  The woman made the experience a non-event, for which Hermione was eternally grateful.

The day after they all packed up their trunks and headed to the train.  With her new status, Hermione couldn’t help but be both excited and nervous about the coming year.  But she kept reminding herself that omegas had been attending Hogwarts since the school formed. They would never put their students at risk.

He watched from a safe distance as Granger and her friends made their way onto platform 9 ¾.  He couldn’t help but notice Potter alternated between giving her distance and touching her a bit too familiarly.  He couldn’t help but wonder for the hundredth time what she smelt like for the Dark Lord himself to desire her.

“I can smell Potter’s reek from here,”  Blaise said as he came up behind Draco. “Think he’s already marked the mudblood?  Sure is acting like it.” He added as he too watched the golden trio coming to school for the last time.

“No.  Potter is fighting the instinct,”  Draco said and looked away. “But I already told you to stay away from her.  You don’t want that trouble.” He warned his friend honestly.

“You don’t need to tell me.  Granger is way too dangerous even if she didn’t have a benefactor.”  He said with a smirk. “Already got burned, trying to have a bit of fun with the Weasley girl.”  He reminded his friend.

“Do you have no standards?”  Draco sneered.

“Omegas are above standards, and you know it.”  Blaise countered. “Nothing feels better than an omega.  They were made for us. Blood purity rules are even set aside a lot of times for an omega.”  He said thoughtfully as they both watched Granger get onto the train. “Think he’ll mate her?”  He asked curiously.

“He’s never taken a mate, why would he start now?”  Draco responded and shook his head. “Let’s get on; I want to change before the Prefect meeting.”

Once they were on the train and settled into their cabin, Draco closed the shades and started to dig in his trunk for his school robes.

“So glad I dodged that bullet,”  Blaise said smugly. “Sounds like a lot of work.  All I have to focus on is taking down Potter in Quidditch this year.”

“Ah yes, I heard you got the captaincy,”  Draco said with a smile for his friend. “Well you know I am always up for a Potter bashing.”

“Good luck with your meeting.  I am sure Granger has all sorts of ideas to make your life hell.”  Blaise said happily, and Crabb and Goyal chuckled at the joke.

Draco shook his head as he headed down to the Prefect meeting cabin at the end of the train.  As if drawn by his thoughts alone Granger exited a cabin right in front of him making his frown as Weasley followed her out.

He took in a slow breath and to get their scent.  He could feel his cock twitch as the smell of wood and books filled his lungs.  Merlin, no wonder the Dark Lord wanted her. Weasley, on the other hand, smelled of a lesser male, and he smirked as he knew it would be fun to taunt the redhead with his Alpha status.

She stilled midstep in front of them, and Weasley ran into her as her body went rigid in response to Draco scent.  He licked his lips and thought about exactly what he could get away with if there were no witnesses.

“Granger.”  he greeted now that she knew he was there.

She turned on her heels, and Weasley stayed between them as if he could play as some time of human barrier.

“Malfoy.” She said stiffly, and her eyes flicked to the Head Boy pin on his robes before going back to his face.

“We should meet alone before the prefects join us.”  He said, but he was speaking more to Weasley than to her directly.

Granger sucked her bottom lip into her mouth as she thoughts about his request.  They both knew he was right, but she probably thought it would be safer with witnesses.

“He’s right.”  She finally agreed and looked to the dolt.  “Come at the normal time. I’ll be fine.” She said purposefully not looking directly at him.


“Doesn’t own me.”  She snapped and crossed her arms over her chest.  “Tell him I’ll be fine.” She snapped before turning in her heels and heading back down the train.

“If you so much as touch her, Harry and I will kill you,”  Weasley growled as he passed.

“You’ll have to get in line,”  Draco said smugly before following her down the train.

She was seated in the compartment when he made it down.  He thought for half a moment about closing the door behind him, but it would be better for them both if they were not overrun by pheromones.

He sat down across from her to leave plenty of room between the two.

“I want to make something perfectly clear before we start anything else.”  She said looking him directly in the eyes. “We both know what we are, but that does not mean I will let you touch me under any circumstance.  Do you understand?”

“Message received Granger.”  He said with a smirk.

“I’ve read a lot of books on the subject, and I already know that purebloods tend to overlook blood status when it comes to omegas.”  She continued and with her stress over it, her scent filled the cabin even with the door open. Draco started to wonder if the Dark Lord would give him a taste of her after he was done with the bint.

“Look, Granger, you don’t have to worry about me.  I’ll play nice with this arrangement for as long as you do.”  He said putting his hands up in surrender.

“Good.  With that clear, I think we can each do our jobs well and get through this year with flying colors.”

Draco licked his lips, and he noticed her watching his mouth.  “I agree. Now let’s get down to it.”

As he expected she had already done all the legwork of scheduling perfects and other detailed oriented jobs for which the Heads were responsible.  He would only ever admit it to himself, but he knew she would make his life a lot easier in some ways this year. She liked to do work, and he enjoyed to take credit for other people’s work.

The general meeting went without much of a hitch.  They made a few changes to the Prefect rounds so that no Alpha and omega was ever on duty together.  It was a school guideline; they just needed to confirm people status before they could finalize the schedule.

“It is curious that they don’t have the same policy for Alphas and omegas both being heads.”  He said as he enjoyed the view of her cleaning up after their meeting. “With the shared common room, it is a bit dangerous.”

She straightened at his words but didn’t turn to face him.

“I’m going to be smelling you in my sleep.  If you accidentally when into a Heat when I was around, seems like bad things could happen.”

“I am not stepping down from this.” She said turning on him with narrowed eyes.  He knew now when her tempered flared so did her scent. It would be a fun game to press her buttons and see what he could make her do.

“Well you don’t expect me to, do you?”  He asked as he got to his feet and took a step towards her.  “Unless you want me just to mark you, it would make things easier.”

“Don’t even try it Malfoy.”  She snapped, his looks could kill he would be a dead man.  But he couldn’t help but smirk as a new smell added to her scent.  He took another step towards her and took in a visible breath once he was about a foot away.

“What are you doing?”  She asked looking flush and aggravated.

“I can smell your arousal, Granger.”  He said knowingly. “I’ll see you tonight.”  He said it like a threat and headed back towards his friend’s cabin.

He rubbed his chin and wondered if he could find some Beta girl with which to rut.  He would need something if he had to keep his hands off the Dark Lord’s future plaything.  He passed by Pansy’s compartment and stuck his head in to smirk at her gaggle of friends.

Since she had presented as an Alpha last year, they had broken things off.  They were still friends though, and he thought their relationship had improved since sex was no longer on the table.  His eyes shifted to Daphne, and she blushed the moment they did.

“I thought you had a contract with Theo.”  He said instead of a proper greeting. She had spent all last year and most of the summer marked by Theo, but for some reasons he was unmarked, and that was something he couldn’t bring himself to overlook.

“We did, but he broke it off two weeks ago.”  She said looking put out. “You’ll have to ask him about it.”

“Draco darling, stop sniffing around my friends,”  Pansy growled, and he looked up at her with a smile.

“I can’t help it when they smell so very good.”  He said with a wink to Daphne. A pureblood omega would be much better than some mudblood, right?

“Ugck.  Go away if you’re going to continue to fill our cabin with your Alphaness.”  Pansy said with a wave of her hand.

“Fine fine.”  He said giving Daphne a wink and nodding to Pansy before he left them to head back to his male friends.

Chapter 4: This is Life

When Hermione entered the great hall, it felt like all eyes were on her.  She knew she was just overreacting. She wasn’t the only omega in the room, but she felt so outnumbered as a plethora of Alpha scents both appealing and noxious assaulted her from every side.

She took a deep breath through her mouth to try and calm down and think about rational numbers.  From her books, she learned that about 5% of the wizarding population presented as omega. Most present within their 6th or 7th year which meant there were at least three other omegas in the room.  Alphas presented at a rate of 20% of the population which meant there were only about sixteen in the hall. The rest of the presenting class would be Betas which would be around sixty students. So if she were really outnumbered by anyone, it would be Betas.

She took in another breath and shook her head as the numbers didn’t seem to help very much at all.  Ron sat down on one side of her while Harry sat on the other. She knew they were trying to buffer her from any other Alphas who may have presented in Gryffindor, but having Harry so close made her want to crawl into his lap.

He worked very hard not to touch her, and she appreciated his effort even though her instincts were all over the place and she caught herself moving closer to him.  Ginny sat down across from then smelling of an Alpha she didn’t know.

“Did you do it on the train?”  She asked her friend which made Ron go still next to her.

“She means makeout, not sex,”  Ginny informed her brother then smiled at Hermione.  “It is best to get marked before you have to come into a huge gathering like this.  “Michael Corner presented as Alpha this summer.” She said, and both Ron and Harry growled.

“Calm down.”  Hermione snapped and shook her head.  “You both know it is safer for an omega to be scent marked by people they trust.”  She said which calmed down Ronald a little, but Harry still looked annoyed.

“I don’t like the smell of him.”  He informed Ginny bluntly.

“I do,”  Ginny said and sniffed her wrist just to make a show if it.  “Like coffee and leather. Makes me feel cozy.”

Thankfully after that, the subject turned to the coming year, and Hermione found as the feast wore on she could even get used to so many smells around her, even though she was well aware of Harry the whole time.

When Dumbledore stood to speak, he had a grave expression on his face that silenced the entire room.

“As I am sure most of you know that the Ministry of Magic and I have not seen eye to eye over the last few years.  We have finally come to a compromise, and I will be retiring at the end of this school year.” There was a loud outcry at the announcement, but he called for silence once more.  “Minerva McGonagall will be taking my place, and I feel she will be as much of a credit to the school as Head Mistress as she is as our Transfiguration Professor.”

Students clapped at McGonagall stood and gave a little nod of her head, but her expression remained stoic as ever.  No one, it seemed, was happy about this retirement.

“At least he’s staying through our last year,”  Hermione said knowing that was probably while Dumbledore finally gave up the fight.

“Since Voldemort hasn’t made any public moves since the Triwizard Cup, I’m not surprised they finally got the power to kick him out.  But at least Professor McGonagall will be in charge and not Snape.” Harry said looking defeated.

“Some announcements before I let you all head to your beds and get ready for another full day tomorrow.  Mr. Filch wishes for me to remind all students that use or even possession of contraband from Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes will end in the immediate week worth detention.  He has a list of known products and if you wish to check he had it posted directly outside his office. Madam Pomfrey wishes for me to remind all presenting women of the school to stop by the Hospital Wing for their potion supply by the end of the week, and she would like for any female student who started presenting over the summer to stop by tonight.  With that, I wish you all a good night, and tell you that this will be a year to remember.”

Most of the students after that were somewhat subdued as they headed for the hall.  “I guess I should go to the hospital wing,” Hermione said tucking some hair behind her ear.

“Do you want me to come with you?” Harry asked as he eyed the students around them.

“I’ll be fine; only female students are headed in that direction.”  She assured him as she headed down a less busy hall.

She made it to the hospital wing without running into another sole but found there were a couple of girls already there.  Luna smiled at her as she entered, it felt nice to see a friendly face.

“You presented this summer?”  She asked her friend as she took in a breath and smelt a light floral scent.  She was an omega as well. Remembering what Ginny said about how presenting effected female relationships she was relieved.

“Ah yes,”  Luna said nodding to with her words.  “Father is an omega as well, so I’m not so surprised.”  She said with a wave of her hand.

“Was your mother an Alpha?”  Hermione asked curiously. Male omegas were more rare than female.

“She was a Beta; we don’t always have to become attached to the extremes.”  She said taking Hermione’s arm in a show of comfort. “I had a Heat over the summer, and it was awful.  Ginny says the potion helps a lot, so I am looking forward to that.”

“Me too, even though I haven’t had a heat yet.”  Hermione agreed as they waited for the nurse to finished with the other student.

When it was Luna’s turn, Hermione watched the nurse take down all sorts of measurements and details.  She wondered what it was all for, but the woman seemed much too busy to ask. As she watched, she became more and more nervous about her turn.

Luna squeezed her hand on her way out, and she took a breath before taking the seat she had just vacated.

“Miss Granger.  I was wondering when I would see you.”  The nurse said and gave her a kindly smile.  “This is nothing to worry about; we just like to give anyone newly presenting a little check up to see that everything is okay.”  She explained before she went through the same process she had with Luna.

“What about the guys?”  She asked frowning as none of them had been directed to the hospital wing.

“It is slightly different with men.  Their presenting doesn’t take as much of a toll on them physically.”  She explained before taking a box of small vials off the shelf. “I want you to take one of these now, and in the morning we should be able to tell where you are in your cycle.  Come back if there are any issues.”

“Okay.”  Hermione agreed and glanced over to notice more girls had come in.  She didn’t want to keep the nurse up, so she took the potion with a quick gulp and made a face at the sour taste.

With a nod from the older woman, she got up and headed out with the box of potions in hand.  She got a little twist in her stomach about heading to the Head’s dorm for the first time. There was happiness as she achieved something she had set out to do when Hermione was eleven, but also nerves as she thought about sharing the space with Draco Malfoy.

By the time she made it to the suite her stomach was churning with nerves, and she felt like she was sweating a little.  Her whole body felt hot with it, but she pressed through and touched the door to open it.

The common room was cozy with sofa, and two chairs by a fire as well as a corner set up as a little kitchen area, complete with ice box and stove.  Malfoy has already made himself at home on the couch, and spread himself out so she would have no room to sit anywhere near him.

That was fine by Hermione as she didn’t have any desire to sit with him at all.  She moved towards the room marked for the Head Girl and fell into her bed without closing the door or even changing her clothes.

Her last thought before she passed out was that maybe the sick feeling wasn’t nerves after all.

After a full day of maneuvering his minions and reviewing plans, Voldemort was glad to find some peace in the comfortable apartment he rented under Evard’s name.  He let the illusion once again drip away as he poured himself a drink and sat down with the book he had bought for the Granger girl.

Arithmancy was always a favorite subject of his and rereading the familiar tome put his mind at ease, but also turned his thoughts back to the omega that has denied him.  It had never happened before, and a frown came to his lips as he could vividly see her face again as she fought her desire for him.

Why did that make him want her more?  It was a ridiculous thing to want a woman because she was hard to get.  He was not a man that fell for such idiotic traps. It must be something else.  She smelled pleasing, and her form fit perfectly against his, the fact that she was highly intelligent and top of her class was appealing.  He would know if she was genuinely worth his time intellectually once he sent her the book and found how quickly she understood he was correct in his assessment.

The fact that she was a mudblood was troubling.  Though often, blood status could be overlooked, when an omega was worthwhile in other ways.  Voldemort knew if he took her there would be talk of him floundering in his beliefs. Even if he only enjoyed her for a short time, there would be damage.

He smirked down at the book and closed it before taking it to bed with him.  He let his hand rest against it in the night; slowly he would rub the gland on his wrist against the cover so that his scent would forever be bound into the book.

He was woken up in the early morning by a screeching sound at the window.  He sighed knowing none of his followers would dare wake him if it wasn’t important.  He moved to the window to allow the owl entrance and snatched the letter from its foot before sending it off without a treat.

When he first looked over the letter he was annoyed it contained Draco’s wish for candy and other sweets before he remembered the privacy charm that his minions used.  He sighed to himself and cast the counter-charm before reading the note again

Dark Lord,

You told me to keep you advised of Granger’s actions.  Last evening she came back to our shared room and passed out on her bed so suddenly that I heard her hit the mattress.  As you seemed invested in her well being, I rushed her to the Hospital Wing. I have just now gotten a free moment away from questions from the professors to write this.  It seems she has had a severe allergic reaction to the Heat Regulation Potion they use here at the school and can’t seem to wake her. Professor Snape has tried three antidotes that have so far been unsuccessful.  Please make your desires in this situation known.


He read the letter twice with narrowed eyes.  Was that imbecile school trying to kill their students?  He got dressed in a rush and collected the things he would need from his lab.  He headed directly to Malfoy Manor and walked in to find the first House Elf that approached him.

“I want to see both of them as quickly as they are able.  I do not wish to be kept waiting.” He told the thing firmly before heading to the den where they usually met.  He sat down at the desk in the room and started to compose a letter while he waited for the occupants to be woken and dress.

When the door opened, he did not look up from his work.  “I need you to write a letter to your friend Severus. Use the usual codes and include this vial.”  He said tapping a small box he has set next to him on the desk.

“What is it, my Lord?”  Lucius asked confused and weary by his sudden appearance at the early hour.

“Tell him it is for the Ganger girl he’ll understand.  Also, let him know I wish for her to come to no further harm while under his care.  He is the serious agent in that school.” He said as he looked over his letter and tucked it into the book he had brought with him before turning to look at the Malfoys.

Lucius looks disheveled as he had rushed to obey the Dark Lord’s order to come and not make him wait, but Narcissa looked as put together and perfect as always.  He wondered if she slept that way or if she had already been up getting ready for the day.

“Narcissa I wish for you to write to your son and tell him the same.  I have plans for the mudblood, and I do not wish for them to be set back by injury or death.  He may wish to maneuver himself closer to the girl so he can ensure he safety.”

“Of course my Lord.”  She said bowing her head before he dismissed them both to he as they were told.

One day in the care of that old coot and a precious omega almost dies.  Voldemort smirked then turned back to write a few other letters so he could fully use the situation for his own gain.  It was now too late to go back to sleep, but too early to call most of his minions to the manor to start the business of the day.  So he busied himself with new plots and ideas.

At some point, an elf brought him breakfast and tea, and he continued to work as he considered whatever had been put in front of him.  By the time his Death Eaters started to gather in the room he had a stack of letters to send with them.

They sat comfortably around the den as Voldemort turned to give his attention to the group.  “Does anyone have anything to report?” He asked sitting as if he were holding court from the desk chair.

“I have the list you wanted from the Ministry,”  Macnair said as he pulled out several scrolls. “The first is our current agents within key departments on the Ministry, the second is a list of those working for us that do not fully know who they are working for and the third is a list of those we think are vulnerable to our influence.”  He explained as he handed over the lists.

“Excellent.”  The Dark Lord said as he took the scrolls and looked them over.  “How are we doing on the Azkaban project?” He asked looking to Nott Sr.

“Augustus Rookwood is our test subject.  His hearing will be within the month, my Lord.” Nott said with a cruel smile. “When everything goes as it should he will e a free man, and we will continue to push for the legitimate release of all our brothers and sisters.”

“Don’t celebrate until this plan actually works.  There are many that will fight the release of any Death Eater.  We will not be able to get my most loyal freed this way.”

“As we adjust the thinking of the Ministry we will work to adjust the thinking of all of wizarding Britain my Lord.”  Malfoy cut in. “I am already working with the Prophet to show our movement in the best possible light, and to prove that many of your followers were imprisoned unjustly.  As they don’t have you to fear, they start to forget, and we can use that for our gain.”

“These are for you to take and make sure they get to the correct agents.”  He said taking the letters off the desk. “It seems under Dumbledore’s care one of his students, a precious omega, had an allergic reaction to that poison they feed all the girls and nearly died.  In fact, I don’t know what shape she is in at the moment. We need to publicize this as a point of his senility, and his the danger of forcing his new ways on our traditional values.”

The men nodded as he spoke, and he could see the emotional reaction each of them had with the very idea of almost losing an omega from the world.  The Granger girl was already so useful if she knew it or not.

Chapter 5: Sleep and Other Hazards

Hermione was on fire.  She screamed and tried to break free of the burn but large hands pulled her back into the flame.  She fought against their grasp trying to free herself.

“Shoo, you are the flame.”  A voice that sounded like every man she has ever desired at once spoke against her neck.

“Alpha!”  She moaned and suddenly the burn was something much deeper than the simple charing of the skin.  She was burning from the inside.

A wonderful pain to her neck made her scream as he thrust himself into her and filled her with a bruising force.  All the while clamping his jaw onto the back of her neck. It was so amazingly painful that she couldn’t stop screaming for more.

Suddenly she was cold and her Alpha was gone and the shock of it made her whimper and look around lost in nothing but darkness.  The change was jarring and she wrapped herself into a ball and started to whimper as she had never felt so alone.

“Alpha?”  She asked the darkness, she didn’t understand why he left her, what had she done wrong?

She was falling through the air high above the Quidditch pitch screaming, she hated heights, and she was going to die the moment she hit the ground.  She wondered if it would hurt. Strong arms caught her the familiar smell of the winter wind filled her head before she looked up to see bright green eyes.

“Mine,”  Harry said before pulling her into a heated kiss, and pushing her back onto his dorm room bed and pinning her by her wrists.  It felt so good to be held that way, she pushed back into his every touch.

“Yours”  She gasped as he bit her shoulder and claimed her as his omega.

“HARRY!”  She screamed in joy as she wrapped her legs around him.

“Shoo, you are the flame.”  He said as thrust into her and captured her lips in a heated kiss.

As she kissed his lips and body changed against her.  His form felt smaller, without the muscles from years of playing Quidditch.  He grasped her breast as his thin lips moved down his neck. He smelled different as well but her body did not seem to mind the change.

“Terry.” She gasped knowing who it was without having to understand how she knew.

“I’m the Alpha.”  He moaned against her skin and she smiled as he played with her body.

“You’re the Alpha, my Alpha.”  She gasped as lips wrapped around her nipple and he brushed his teeth against the sensitive spot.  “Yes! Alpha!”

And just like that, she was alone again, cold and worthless and shaking in fear.  “Please bring the fire.” She gasped and she could see her breath as she sat on the cold stone.  She could feel the wetness as the tears ran freely down her cheeks. She didn’t want to be alone anymore.

“Will you dance for me, Hermione?”  A man from the shadows asked and she looked over towards the blond feeling safe once more.

She got to her feet and started to dance to Pas de deux from Swan Lake.  She was dressed as a blood-red swan and Draco joined her as the Prince dressed in green.  Everywhere he touched her felt like she was going to burst into flames, but she savored the heat as she looked into his cold silver eyes.

“Shoo, you are the flame.”  He told her and she reveled in the heat before he pulled her in for a dominating kiss.  Her hands moved to his bare chest as he pushed her back against the wall. She could feel the scrape of stone against her skin, but she didn’t care as long as her Alpha was there.

Her fire consumed her and his body seemed to melt away until she was left alone in the heat.  She was the inferno and she was lost struggling to get away from the flame. Hermione was on fire.  She screamed and tried to break free of the burn but large hands pulled her back into the flame. She fought against their grasp trying to free herself.

“Shoo, you are the flame,”  Edvard spoke cooly against her neck and she instantly relaxed back against his form.  He licked the back of her neck and it made her shiver as his hands explored more of her body.

“Alpha!”  She gasped turning in his arms so she could look into his dark eyes.  “Don’t leave me.” She whimpered, not sure if she could handle being alone again.  He gave her a wicked smile and shook his head.

“You will never escape me little omega.”  He told her darkly before he devoured her lips in another burning kiss.

Hermione woke with a start and she could still feel the burning as she looked around and tried to get her bearings.  It was dark outside and she was in a strange place. It took her a full minute to realize she was in the Hogwarts hospital wing.

She blinked a few more times before Madam Pomfrey came rushing over to feel her head and check her pulse.  “I’m so sorry dear.” She said looking worried and nodding to herself.

“W-what happened?”  She asked, pulling her arm away from the nurse, it felt unnerving to be touched after the dream.

The woman took a slow breath before sitting on the bed facing Hermione.  The action worried her even more, Madam Pomfrey never acted so familiarly.

“You had a bad reaction to the Heat Regulation Potion.”  The older woman started carefully. “There were severe complications, you’ve been unconscious for nearly a day.”  She explained and Hermione looked at her hands.

“Is there another potion I can take to control my heat?” She asked always being one to pick up on what wasn’t being said directly.

“You shouldn’t worry about that now dear.  From what I could tell we have at least a few weeks to make arrangements.”

“Arrangements?”  Hermione asked as a frown creased her face.  “What am I supposed to do?”

“This sort of thing happens every so often, we have alternative plans that will keep you and the other students safe when the time comes.  I want you to stop by every day after class until we get an exact idea of what your cycle is like. But you’ll be staying here for at least the rest of the night to make sure you are fully recovered.  Thank Merlin we have a Potions Master at the school.” She said grasping Hermione’s hand for a moment before getting to her feet.

“Professor Snape?”  She asked with a frown.

“We were trying to counter the potion since Mr. Malfoy brought you back last night.”  The nurse explained and Hermione could still see the worry in her eyes. “Between his quick thinking and Professor Snape’s potion skills… I don’t want to think about what would have happened to you otherwise.”

“Malfoy?”  Hermione’s frown only deepened as she thought about her rival carrying her through the school.  Why would he even care?

“Poor boy, I think he was in quite a panic when he brought you in.  I am sure it was quite alarming to witness when you collapsed.”

Hermione nodded slowly as she tried to fit pieces together that didn’t seem to go.

“Your friends are waiting for you in the hall, would you like to see them?  If you’re too tired I am sure I can send them off till morning.” Madam Pomfrey said and Hermione was sure she knew which the woman preferred.

“I am sure Harry’s going mad, I’d like to see them.”  She said as she pushed the news about Malfoy away to study later.

Harry wanted to break down the Hospital Wing’s door.  He had been pacing there since his last class of the day.  It had taken too long for anyone to even tell him she was here.  The day had been hell not knowing what had happened to her.

Then when they finally got around to telling Ron and him that she was sick they wouldn’t let him skip class to see her!  Then they wouldn’t let him into the wing even though classes had ended hours ago.

“Why won’t they tell us anything?”  He growled as he turned on his friend who was sitting calmly with a grim expression on his face.

“It will be okay Harry, Madam Pomfrey said she would come to get us as soon as Hermione woke up.”  He said trying to be the voice of reason. Ron was not used to being the voice of reason for the three of them and he sounded awkward as he spoke to his best friend.

“They kept this from us all day Ron, I had no idea where she was and no one would tell me.”  He said as if it was clearly his right to know exactly where Hermione was at all times.

“You know they would do more to keep you informed if you scent marked her.”  Ron supplied as Harry growled in frustration. “They don’t mess around with courting pairs.”

“You know I’ve talked to her about it.  She thinks it will make things weird for you.”  Harry sighed and sat down next to his friend once again.

“You need to get her to see sense, Harry.  If she starts dating some other Alpha do you really think they are going to want her to be around us?”  He pressed but Harry already knew all of this. “They’ll see you as a threat.”

“Th-that’s a worry for tomorrow Ron.  What if she doesn’t-” He had to swallow the tightness in his throat as he couldn’t help but worry.  Why hadn’t they at least told them what was going on? Why couldn’t Harry and Ron be at her side when she woke up?  What had caused the sudden sickness?

“She is going to be fine, mate,”  Ron told him with a frown. “She probably just needs rest and the nurse knows how much trouble we are.”’

Harry looked at his friend for the first time since they had been banished to the hall and tilted his head as a moment of clarity hit him like lightning from heaven.

“When did you become the reasonable one?”  He asked his friend and they both cracked a smile as some of the tension he was feeling over Hermione lifted for just a moment.

“No one is more surprised than me,”  Ron said with big eyes as he shook his head.

Harry sat down next to his friend and let out a huff as his attention turned back to the door.  “I don’t know what I am going to do if she isn’t okay.” Harry murmured softly to himself. “The pain is almost physical.”

“You know Hermione as well as I do, she’s too stubborn to leave us like this.”  Ron pointed out making Harry smile for a moment before the door finally opened to show the no-nonsense nurse.

“The visit will be short.  If either of you upset or excite her in the slightest you will be banished from the ward.  Do I make myself clear?” She asked as she stood firmly in their way. The boys agreed in unison before she let them pass.

Harry’s heart eased when he saw Hermione sitting up in bed and giving them a weak smile.  She looked too pale, and her smell had a sour note to it that worried Harry, but seeing her awake lifted the worst of his fears.

“What happened?”  Ron asked as they neared and Harry was glad his friend had saved him the trouble, he didn’t think he had full control of his voice as he looked over her weakened form.

“It seems I’m allergic to the potion they…”  Hermione turned a bit pink and couldn’t look either of them in the eyes.  “They give us to control certain needs.” She finished a bit lower. “I’ll be fine.”  She assured them but he could see the worry written all over her even if he didn’t fully understand the issue.

“There are no lasting effects?”  Harry asked as he made sure to keep a few feet between the two of them.  He knew if he moved any closer he wouldn’t be able to stop himself from taking her into his arms.

“No, no.”  She shook her head and looked between both of them.  “Only that…” She held her breath and bit her lip as a frown formed on her face. “Only I think I’ll be missing a lot of school.”  She let the words burst from her lip as if she was on the verge of tears.

It took a great amount of self-control not to laugh in the face of her worry when just a few minutes before he was worried he would never see her again.

“I am sure you can figure it out Hermione, you always do.”  He said as he gave her an encouraging smile.

She took a slow breath and he watched as a bit of tension eased out of her shoulders.  Ron stood at the end of her bed for a moment to give his own encouragement.

“They wouldn’t tell us anything about what was going on,” Ron said as he let out all the worry that had been building up now that he no longer had to be strong for Harry.  “We were going crazy.”

“I’m sorry I worried you guys, they probably didn’t want to share anything because it is such a personal subject.”  She explained as she made sure to look between both of her friends, even if it felt like her eyes kept being pulled back to Harry.  Maybe he was imagining it.

“When are they going to let you out?”  Harry asked, wanting things to get back to normal as soon as possible.

“They want me to stay the night just to be sure and then I hope I can go to class tomorrow.”  She said nodding to herself in the determined way he was used to.

“So you’ll only miss one day,”  Ron said with a grin as he tried to cheer her up.

“For now,” Hermione said worriedly.

“Do you want to talk about it?”  Harry asked as he took in her unease.  The need to wrap his arms around her and comfort her was so strong he could taste it, and it unsettled him all the more.  He glanced up to where the nurse was sitting at her desk and decided to take the chance. He stepped towards the side of her bed and took her hand in his.

She gave him a weak smile.  “I just can’t take the potion, and that means I’m going to…”  She bit her lip and blushed once more. “I am going to be useless for about a week every few months.”  She sighed obviously embarrassed to be talking about such things.

“Don’t worry about that right now,”  Harry said as he hair back from her cheek.  It was a soothing gesture, all he wanted to do now was touch and comfort her.  “I am sure you will come up with a brilliant plan to stay ahead of everything.”

“It’s time for the two of you to go.” Madam Pomfrey said as she moved to them making shooing motions with her hands.  “You’ll see her tomorrow, now stop bothering my patient.”

“See you tomorrow,”  Ron said with a lopsided smile as he took Harry’s arm and led him from the hospital wing.

Harry looked over Hermione a moment longer before he let his friend drag him back out into the hall.

“What are you doing here?”  Ron sneered and it drew Harry’s attention away from the hospital wing door.  He turned to see Draco sneering right back and holding a neatly stacked pile of parchment.

“I don’t think that is any of your business.”  He said as he pushed passed them heading towards the door they had just left.

When the other Alpha moved close enough Harry was moving before he knew exactly why he was upset.  He slammed Draco into the stone wall of the hallway which made the parchments fly everywhere.

“Why does she smell like you?”  Harry growled as he barely restrained himself from punching Draco’s arrogant face.  “What did you do to her?!”

“From what I’m told I saved her life.”  The blond said. He hardly reacted to Harry’s posturing and that only annoyed him more.  “She smells like me because I’m the one who carried her down here. Now you can just piss off Potter, you have no claim on her.”

“She’s mi-”  Harry cut himself off as he knew the words weren’t true.  He wanted Hermione to belong to him, but if she found out he was claiming her, even to someone like Malfoy, he knew she would be upset with him. “-my friend.”  He finished because at least that was true.

“Afraid of what will happen when I claim her as mine ?”  Draco taunted, a wide grin playing over his face.

“I’m not going to let you play with her Malfoy.  Everyone knows you wouldn’t actually claim someone like her .”

Malfoy laughed in his face and shook his head.  “So glad you know so much about your wizarding side Potter.  Hermione is fair game now that it’s proven that she is a real witch.  Omegas are so rare and precious, unfortunate bloodlines can be overlooked.  Even for a Malfoy.”

“She is never going to go for someone like you Malfoy.”  Harry pushed him one more time against the wall before stepping back.  “You’ve got nothing she wants.”

The Slytherin just grinned as he pulled his wand.  Harry did the same out of reflex, but the other boy only summoned his pile of parchments from the floor.

“We will see about that Potter, right now…”  He shook the papers at him. “…I’ve got my notes from all our shared classes, as well as all of her assignments for today.”  He grinned wider at Harry’s stunned look before pushing past once more and heading into the Hospital Wing to deliver his prize.

Harry was still staring at the wall when Ron touched his shoulder.  “We should go before he comes back.”

“I should have thought of collecting her assignments,”  Harry said as he let his friend guide them away.

“Agreed.  For a girl like our Hermione, those papers might as well be flowers.”  Ron said, sounding just as moody as Harry felt.