Prompt: 20 – Smirk – Blaise/Hermione
Characters/Pairing: Blaise, Hermione
Warnings: breaking and entering, unlawful acts
Word count: 905
Summary: Blaise breaks into the Muggleborn Ministry but finds someone is already there.
A/N: Written for delayed_poet. I hope you like it. For those of you unfamiliar, there's a couple other of my RP/dystopia pieces floating around somewhere.
Blaise ghosted through the Ministry. It was dangerous to do—he could be arrested for it. And a pureblood arrest was nothing to joke about these days, with the Muggleborns in charge. But someone had to investigate the goings-on and bring information back to the resistance, and Blaise had always been good at this sort of thing.
The Auror Office was, perhaps, the riskiest place to go, but the new Head of the Aurors might have some pertinent information laying around. Blaise was surprised at the lack of heavy wards around the office—but then, of course, no one expected a pureblood to be able to get into the Ministry at all these days except under spousal tag.
He turned from the door on one wall and froze. Staring back at him, rifling through a cabinet herself, was Hermione Granger. Her eyes were wide with shock and fear and her wand was clutched in her hand. He dropped his wand into a pocket and lifted his empty hands to placate her, never losing her gaze, though if she knew anything about him she should know that he didn’t need a wand to do damage with magic.
When she didn’t hex him immediately, he ghosted further into the room, until he was right in front of her. Muggleborn she might be, he knew she wasn’t supposed to be here—and the wild look in her eye told him that she was looking for what he was too.
How interesting. The resistance might have just met another resistance, even if it might consist of one very strong willed young woman. She was the last of the Trio, though, or the last that truly mattered. Potter was dead, supposedly slain by Ron Weasley. To someone being persecuted, the ploy was obvious—further smearing of the purebloods, even the ones who had fought against Voldemort. No pureblood was safe to be around, if a Weasley could kill the wizarding savior. It would be no surprise that Granger would see through it, but that she managed to keep her lips zipped and played along with events was telling.
And promising, for him.
“They won’t be keeping their secrets in the filing cabinet,” he whispered, voice soft. “You have to look deeper.”
She gave him a deep, unfathomable look, but without a word she turned again to looking for whatever it was they were both looking for. Blaise started with the desk, systematically dismantling the wards, checking for other spells, examining everything, and then putting it all back in exactly the way it had been. Thank Merlin he had a spare wand squirreled away so if something was noticed it wouldn’t be traced to him.
He noticed Granger hadn’t thought of that, and when she went to cast a spell, he came up behind her and rested a hand over hers. “Not the best idea,” he told her quietly.
“What?” she hissed, her anger simmering under the surface and threatening to make her loud.
“Your wand,” he said. “It can be traced. Do you really think they don’t know your magic by now?” Her doe eyes widened slightly and her lips tightened. Sometimes, with Granger, it was hard to remember she was a Muggleborn because she took to magic so well, but other times, like now, it was obvious—she didn’t know some of the things that magical children were brought up knowing, like how your wand gave your magic a signature that could be identified and traced.
“Of course.” She bit off the words vehemently, hating to be shown up by him.
“Here, use this one,” Blaise said, flipping his around and offering her the handle. The move surprised them both, but Hermione in typical Gryffindor fashion didn’t let it make her hesitate. She grasped it and for just a moment Blaise thought she might turn it on him, though why he didn’t know. It wouldn’t help either of them.
But then, she turned away to her work, and he turned away to his. They passed the wand between them in silence. It didn’t work quite as smoothly for her as for him, but then, he’d bought it for himself.
But there was nothing. Oh, there were hints, but there were no concrete clues to whom was running the Muggleborn Ministry behind the scenes. Hermione looked as frustrated as he felt.
“Maybe next time,” Blaise murmured, refusing to feel disinheartened, even if his guts clenched at his failure.
“Next time,” came the bitter echo beside him. Blaise turned to her and placed a finger gently over her lips.
“There will be a next time,” he promised in a soft voice. “This can’t last forever. It can’t.” It was the only hope he had, that this would end. That his friends would be safe.
Hermione kept his gaze and reminded Blaise of nothing so much as an almond—rich and brown and ever so tasty, but possessing with proper extraction the essence of a deadly poison.
“It can’t,” he repeated once more, and gave her his best, most confident smirk. It drew a ghost of a smile to her lips.
“Then next time, Zabini. Perhaps I’ll see you there,” Granger replied after he removed his finger.
Blaise smirked again, tapped his finger against his lips where hers had rested against the pad, and with singular talent he slipped out the door and disappeared, as if he’d never been there at all.