Chapter Six: Thursday

The characters and canon situations in the following story belong solely to JK Rowling, Scholastic and WB. I am not making any money from the publishing or writing of this story.

Beta cred: Palmetto Blue

 

Luna paddled deeper into the aquatic plant reservoir. The water was magically heated and clear, the perfect environment for both fragile plants and amorous people. “You know, I’ve always wanted to make love underwater like a mermaid.”

 

Draco caught hold of her waist and made a quiet, happy sound. “I’m not wasting a perfectly good fuck by hurrying to accommodate our need for air.”

 

“But I have gillyweed!” She wrapped her legs around his torso, enjoying the soft resistance of the water as she ground provocatively against him. “It’ll be so much fun, Draco.”

 

“Nnngh. What?”

 

And I have enough for both of us. Then we can have mermaid sex.” Luna pressed her mouth to his and mimicked the act, pulling away with a loud, teasing smack.

 

Draco leaned close, eyes fixed on her mouth. “I don’t want to.”

 

She kissed him again and then reached down between them to catch hold of his cock. Giving it a gentle tug, she hummed against his lips. “Yes you do.”

 

“I won’t be able to use my fingers as well if they’re webbed.” He slid his hand over her backside and down to her spread seam, demonstrating exactly what he meant.

 

Luna fought to keep her eyes from crossing. Oh, he was very good with his hands . . . she pushed away from him. Draco needed to be underwater between five and six this evening, and it was five minutes to five! This required a higher level of persuasion.

 

“Draco, I want to be the mer-princess trapped in a fishnet at the bottom of the lake, and I want you to be the handsome mer-stranger who finds me.”

 

“Go on.”

 

Four minutes to five. She swam to the edge of the pool with a languorous backstroke. “I beg you to untangle my hands and tail.” He was following her now with a familiar dark heat in his grey eyes, so she continued, “But you’ve decided you want to slake your rough, unbridled lust in my mer-body first.” She paused theatrically as she reached her goal – a small pouch laid on the pool’s edge – and opened it.

 

Draco seemed to be wavering. “We could do that above the water far more easily. Lu, sweetheart, please don’t make me eat that stuff.”

 

A glance at the clock showed only three minutes left – barely enough time to ingest the gillyweed and submerge deep enough for the water to do its part of The Plan. A thought popped into her head so random that it was most certainly a gift of the stars themselves. Venus must be nearing her celestial throne! “But it’s not your fault your mer-cock is raging, because you’ve been ignoring it as you search for your true love. And you realize that’s me, so you resist your baser desires. Instead you return me to my father and ask for my hand in marriage. And when we consummate our marriage bed, the ripples of our mutual orgasm shake the foundations of all nine continents.”

 

She saw the unmistakable flame of true love light in his eyes and regretfully followed the path of the stars, stuffing his mouth with gillyweed when he opened it to speak.

 

“Chew and swallow. And hurry! I’m suddenly hornier than ever.”

 

Luna twined her body around Draco as he guided their descent to the deepest part of the aquatic plant reservoir. She smiled against his mouth, sighing with relief a second later when Neville’s noncorporeal Patronus cut through the water, muted in that environment, the very moment that Draco closed his eyes in pleasure. Now she just needed to keep him very distracted for an hour . . .

 

*          *          *

 

“You know, I’ve always wanted to make love underwater like a mermaid.”

 

Draco chuckled as he pulled Luna close. “I’m not wasting a perfectly good fuck by hurrying to accommodate our need for air.”

 

“But I have gillyweed! It’ll be so much fun, Draco,” she coaxed.

 

He was having difficulty thinking of anything else other than the way she was grinding against him. “Nnngh. What?”

 

There followed an argument and a kiss that would have driven a lesser man mad. “I don’t want to,” he argued.

 

“Yes,” she gave his erection an expert squeeze and tug, “you do.”

 

His body was definitely on board with Luna’s crazy idea, but Draco resisted heroically. “I won’t be able to use my fingers as well if they’re webbed.” He retaliated with a brief, teasing touch to her slit, smirking when her eyes crossed in pleasure.

 

Still she continued! “Draco, I want to be the mer-princess, trapped in a fishnet at the bottom of the lake, and I want you to be the handsome mer-stranger who finds me.”

 

Draco couldn’t help but encourage her at that point. Luna was adorable when she became set on something. “Go on.”

 

His mistake was apparent the moment she swam from his embrace, her fantastic tits beckoning him like twin sirens with each stroke of her arms. “I beg you to untangle my hands and tail.”

 

Draco swam after her without hesitation, eyes fixed on her nipples.

 

“But you’ve decided you want to slake your rough, unbridled lust in my mer-body first.” She paused theatrically as she reached her goal – a small pouch laid on the pool’s edge – and opened it.

 

Oh, he’d slake his lust, alright, but the use of gillyweed was strictly a last resort. “We could do that above the water far more easily. Lu, sweetheart; please don’t make me eat that stuff.”

 

Then Luna spun a tempting scenario and, in a voice so innocent she couldn’t possibly know the weight of her words, she gave utterance to Draco’s most secret desire. “ . . . and you ask for my hand in marriage . . .”

 

He heard nothing else. He’d been planning to propose since Christmas but there hadn’t yet been a time that felt right. This was pretty close to perfect according to the thundering of his heart. He opened his mouth to bare his Slytherin heart, only to have it promptly stuffed with gillyweed.

 

Who was Draco Malfoy to argue with the woman of his dreams? He pulled Luna close and began swimming to the bottom of the aquatic plant reservoir, and he didn’t even notice when their clasped hands became webbed.

 

*          *          *

 

Neville stepped out of the Floo into the Leaky Cauldron, pausing for a moment to admire the view in front of him: Hermione, bent at the waist as she aimed a cleaning charm at the sooty hem of her robes, her pert bum in the air. Merlin, but he wanted to grab that arse! And spank it . . .

 

“Oh! I didn’t realize this was your stop, too,” she said, catching sight of him over her shoulder.

 

He dragged his eyes upward as quickly as he could. “Meeting someone for . . . uh, a quick thing around five.”

 

“Same here.”

 

Neville grinned. “Brilliant.” She found the Animagus! “We’re dead set for The Plan.” He realized what he’d just said. “Uh, I mean, to plan our return trip. To Hogwarts. Tonight.”

 

Hermione’s pale complexion underwent a rapid conversion to beet-red, but her pretty mouth quirked in a self-conscious sort of smile. “Errrrrr. Right!” She mumbled something about running an errand first and dashed off, face still deeply flushed.

 

He gave an internal fist-pump.

 

The purveyor of Ministry-banned plants was early and noticeably nervous, but of course he had a venomous Tentacula in stock. And yes, for an extra fifty Galleons he’d ship it to the undisclosed location via Portkey provided by the purchaser. Less than twenty minutes later, Neville’s pockets were several hundred Galleons and one slightly illegal Portkey lighter, and the under-the-table transaction was complete. He headed for the bar.

 

Hermione returned to the Leaky an hour later in a breathless, windblown state, and she carried a small but very distinctive black and red shopping bag. Hello. Neville sat up straight, eyes locked on it. Somebody’s been to the lingerie room at Malkin’s. His cock twitched. He signaled for a second pint and watched her cross to a table occupied by a vaguely familiar-looking witch, who suddenly waved and called his name . . . Hell and damn.

 

He fled to the gents’ and there, in the privacy of a stall, cast a desperate Patronus. “Backup requested at the Leaky! Draco, I’m in deep shit!” Then he waited, thoughts turning to the potential disaster brewing at that table. Why, oh why, had he ever thought a one-off with Pansy Parkinson was a good idea?! The witch was a full-out stalker! And when the bloody fuck had she become an Animagus?!

 

Help didn’t arrive – or even bother to respond – in the amount of time Neville felt comfortable leaving the two alone to converse and so, summoning his Gryffindor courage, he squared his shoulders, adjusted his trouser tent, and headed toward inevitable doom.

 

In hindsight, it could have been worse. Pansy did her worst, true, but Hermione was brilliant. Gods, but she was sexy when riled! And that she was, judging by the fire in her eyes and the growl in her throat whenever Pansy so much as looked at him. Between the two of them they reeled the Animagus in so expertly that in the end she thanked them.

 

He made multiple trouser-tent adjustments as he waded through the fray of his own unpremeditated design and kept his eye on the endgame: the witch who owned his heart and whatever she’d just bought to wear for him the following night.

 

 

*          *          *

 

Hermione had just finished charming the soot from her robes when she caught sight of Neville directly behind her. She stifled a shriek of surprise and attempted intelligent conversation; this was difficult because her prodigious brain was even now processing the distinct possibility he’d been checking out her arse. He still hadn’t shaved that glorious scruff . . . Oops, she was ogling him. Errrrrr, what did he just say?

 

“Meeting someone for . . . uh, a quick thing around five.”

 

THAT is the voice of deep, rough sex itself. “Same here.”

 

“Brilliant.” He flashed a smile designed to shut down brain function. “We’re dead set for The Plan.”

 

 

Sweet Circe, did he just- All the blood in her body pooled in her face as Neville backpedaled adorably from his gaffe. Really, if she’d been in any way removed from the situation, she’d have been tempted to gather him in a comforting hug! No, that was a wicked lie; if she ever got that close to Neville Longbottom – and by ‘if’ she meant ‘when’ (which would be tomorrow night) – she’d rip off his clothes and jump his gorgeous bones.

 

Hermione tried to bite back her happy grin. He’d acknowledged the existence of The Plan! She realized such a quasi-perfect moment could only be followed by self-induced humiliation and escaped with a flimsy excuse.

 

‘Flimsy’ was also an excellent descriptor for the undergarments she bought at Malkin’s, although ‘heart attack inducing’ also worked. “What would you recommend to send a message about relational destiny?” she asked the shop attendant.

 

“Unquestionably that.” The woman pointed reverently to some black silk scraps edged in lace. “We call it the ‘Stop Dicking Around and Just Bend Me Over the Desk’ set.”

 

“I’ll take it.” She returned to the Leaky, the distinctive shopping bag swinging saucily from her wrist, to find the last piece of The Plan seated by the hearth. Hermione approached Destiny by way of Pansy Parkinson – the Animagus – and if her hips swayed a bit more than usual it had everything to do with the fact that Neville was watching her from the bar.

 

As she reached the table, Pansy’s face lit up in flirtatious pleasure. “Yooohoooo!” She waved toward the bar. “Neville!”

 

The wizard in question reacted with a look of horror and then bolted to the toilets, robes billowing in his haste. Hermione filed that reaction away for further analysis and took the seat opposite. “Thank you for meeting me, Pansy.”

 

“Merlin’s rod, there goes the best fuck I’ve ever had . . . Look, Granger,” Pansy was half-turned in her chair, neck craned toward the door marking Neville’s escape, “can we keep this short? I suddenly have a thing to do.”

 

There’ll be no doing that particular thing. He’s mine! Almost. “Will you accept my offer?”

 

No, apparently, she would not. She would, however, accept a Firewhiskey. The two witches sipped in silence for an awkward five minutes, during which Pansy kept up her surveillance of the gents’ and Hermione used the full capacity of her brain to find a compelling argument for Pansy to visit Hogwarts. The Plan tottered in jeopardy. What might persuade her to comply?

 

Just as she was about to admit tactical defeat, the perfect strategy arrived like a lamb to the slaughter. Neville strode to the table and pulled out a chair, twirled it around and straddled it. “Ladies. Mind if I join you?”

 

It occurred to Hermione at that point that the wizard sitting beside her wasn’t the quiet, courteous Neville she’d known since childhood, but a completely new and fascinating creature. He slouched assertively, smiled devilishly and- wait, had he just winked?

 

Pansy pounced immediately. “There you are, you bad boy. I’ve been Owling you since last May!”

 

“You know my heart’s taken, Pans,” he crooned. “How’ve you been?”

 

His urbanity would have been downright knickers-dropping in any other circumstance; in this case, unfortunately, it only served as a reminder of his hand – only it hadn’t been just his hand, had it! – in the current situation. Hermione fought off her Neville-induced swoon.

 

“Lonely.” Pansy pouted and ran a finger down his nearest arm. “I need a big strong wizard in my bed tonight.”

 

Hermione’s vision became slightly tinged with red, but she kept her temper. For now. “Nev’s a big strong wizard,” she offered helpfully, unable to keep from narrowing her eyes when he turned to her with a slightly panicked look. Then, as quickly as she’d offered it she snatched the bait away. “But he’ll be at Hogwarts.” With me.

 

“Yep.” He winced and shifted awkwardly in his chair. ‘That I will.”

 

Pansy tried to catch Neville’s attention with a provocative smile. “We could catch up this weekend.”

 

“But you decided not to visit Hogwarts, remember?” Hermione lifted her glass of Firewhiskey and eyed Pansy over its rim. “Too bad.”

 

Neville looked between the two witches warily, as if he might just have realized his perilous position. He made a move to stand. “I think I’ll just-”

 

Both witches clamped a hand on his either arm. “Sit,” growled Hermione. She took the opportunity to give his bicep an experimental squeeze. Neville flexed his arm and shot her a hopeful sort of look. And when she couldn’t contain a quiet gasp, he shifted in his seat again.

 

Pansy, too, seemed to be rethinking her position. “I’ve changed my mind. What time are you done with classes in the afternoon, Neville?” She did something under the table which him jump and laugh nervously as he scooted his chair away from her.

 

Hermione was having difficulty remembering why Pansy’s cooperation was so important. “Offer’s no longer on the table,” she growled.

 

At her words, Neville sprang from his chair and all but hauled Hermione from the table. When they were out of earshot he leaned down and whispered, “Hermione, we need her!”

 

“If she comes to Hogwarts,” she hissed, “I’ll kill her with my bare hands!”

 

“Think of The Plan,” he pleaded. “Please. I just want to be with-”

 

“I’ll do it! I can be there for as long as you like!” Pansy’s voice carried across the space easily, as did her desperation.

 

 

Hermione narrowed her eyes and pointed to the table furthest across the room. “You wait there while I deal with her.”

 

He nodded obediently. “Yes, lo-”

 

She cut him off with a glare and turned back toward her table. “Don’t you dare say another word to me until tomorrow night.” Then, lest he misunderstand her intent, she handed him the little red and black bag that had been dangling from her wrist. “Hold this for me. And no peeking!”