I suppose the rating on this should be R for some adult situations.
Harry sat up in bed and rubbed his eyes it was still dark and something had woken him up. Had it been a dream? No he was sure he had just been dreaming about owning the largest sugarquill in the world. They were about to give him a large golden coin for it. He grabbed his glasses from his bedside table and put them on, suddenly a loud screeching noise made him jump out of bed. He ran to the window peering into the darkness he could see nothing that would have made a noise like that. Looking down towards Hagrid’s cabin he heard the noise again and saw a flash of light then a quiet shout. He groaned; it seemed Hagrid had something fun in store for them and the new teaching assistant tomorrow. He fell back into bed and tried to forget about what the new creature might be.
The next morning at breakfast Harry told Hermonie and Ron what he had seen from his window.
“Maybe it’s a dragon.” Ron said excitedly.
“Ron you know very well that dragons are illegal in Brittan.” Hermonie said disapprovingly. “But they aren’t illegal in America…you don’t suppose this new teaching assistant brought one with her do you?” Harry shook his head but he had been wondering the same thing.
“I guess we will just find out when Care of Magical Creatures comes around today.” He tried to sound light hearted when he said it but a feeling of impending doom swept over him.
Harry struggled through all his classes always checking the time; it seemed that because he was dreading the class so much it arrived very quickly. Soon he, his fellow Gryffindors and the Slytherins where traipsing through the fresh green grass to Hagrid’s cabin. Hagrid was standing there to greet them, his right hand was bandaged.
“’Ello everyone we’ve got a special animal for you today.” He beamed. Everyone groaned, except for Harry out of respect for his friend. But inwardly he wanted to run from whatever Hagrid had.
“I’ll only be a minute I want to help Crystal bring her around.” He disappeared behind the house.
“What do you think it is?” Neville Longbottom asked timidly.
“Knowing that oaf probably something dangerous.” Harry heard Malfoy’s familiar drawl. Before he could say another word, Hagrid, Crystal and what appeared to be a miniature dragon appeared around the cabin. Several of the girls screamed and everyone backed up. The dragon stopped and flared its nostrils, Crystal put a reassuring hand on its muzzle.
“It’s okay. Don’t be frightened she wouldn’t hurt a you. She’s no more harmful than Fang.” Crystal said in a sweet calming voice.
“This here is Crystal, I’m sure all of you know her by now. She’s going to be watching me teach and teaching a little herself this year. This is her pet, Ingrid. She can tell you more about her.” Hagrid said then he looked expectantly at Crystal. She smiled and turned her attention to them.
“Can anyone tell me what type of animal Ingrid is?” After a long pause Neville’s hand came up slowly. “Yes…ummm.”
“Neville Longbottom. Is she a baby dragon?” He asked timidly.
“Close Mr. Longbottom. She is a type of dragon. Does anyone else have a guess?” Neville flushed and Malfoy snickered at her. “Yes Mr. Malfoy?” Crystal asked. Malfoy looked shocked that Crystal had spoken to him.
“I don’t know. Why don’t you ask father.” He drawled as a malevolent smile crept up his face.
“Does anyone else have a guess?” Crystal asked sweetly acting as if she hadn’t asked Malfoy a question. She waited a few moments before she spoke again. “I didn’t think anyone would know what she was. Ingrid is a Minutagrad. She is very rare only about 50 of them are alive in the world. At my old school, Ingledia, I used to breed them. They where founded by Tracfora Hatiy in 1657. She found the last breeding pair dying in a swamp in Florida. That is a part of America. She caught them, tamed them and nursed them back to health. Minutagrad usually prefer the female gender of any species except their own, so I invite any of girls who wish to come pet her to do so. You boys may also come but only one at a time. Ingrid has been around a lot of men so she is usually fine as long as she doesn’t think you’re going to gang up on her.” She looked expectantly at the group, when no one came forward Hagrid took initiative to pet Ingrid. He walked slowly up to her and let her smell him from heat to foot, then he slowly reached a hand out to pet her. Suddenly the air around them became very hot and the noise Harry had heard last night emitted from Ingrid.
“Watch out Hagrid!” Crystal yelled as a great ball of fire erupted from Ingrid’s mouth. Hagrid jumped quickly to the side as the fire ball went past him, the rest of the class moved further back. “I don’t know why but she doesn’t like you Hagrid, you’re going to have to win her over some how. Well as I said she likes women so girls please come forward and pet her, the boys should probably stay far back.”
Still no one came forward; finally Hermonie walked timidly up to Ingrid and held out her hand. Ingrid sniffed her from head to foot; Hermonie stood bravely looking at Ingrid until Ingrid leaned forward and licked her face clean. Hermonie shuddered, but Crystal looked thrilled.
“She likes you Ms. Granger. Now you may reach out and pet her.” Hermonie did as instructed and soon Ingrid was lying on her side letting Hermonie and two other brave girls scratch her belly. While the girls were engrossed in the Minutagrad Harry and Ron sidled up next to Hagrid.
“What happened to your hand Hagrid?” Harry asked as Hagrid watched Crystal tickle Ingrid under her nose.
“What, oh, er it was nothing. Ingrid just doesn’t like me. Like Crystal said, she’s just got to get to know me” He gazed back at Crystal and Ingrid. Harry said nothing more he had seen that look once before when Madame Maxine had arrived at their school. Hagrid had been deeply impressed by her size and her ability to handle herself, but things had tapered off ever since Hagrid had brought Gawp back to live in the Forbidden Forest. Now Hagrid seemed to be impressed by Crystal’s ability to handle wild animals he himself would have trouble with.
After class Hermonie was full of energy, she still had an adrenaline rush from being the first to pet Ingrid. Once she had calmed down Harry asked her what she thought of Crystal.
“Oh she’s a great teacher, I hope when she’s done she can stay at Hogwarts.” She bubbled.
“No I mean what did you think of her and Hagrid?” Hermonie looked at him quizzically. Ron sighed, exasperated.
“Oh come on Hermonie don’t tell me you didn’t see that look in Hagrid’s eyes?! It seems he may have found himself in female form.” He ranted as they entered the Great Hall.
“No I didn’t notice anything. I’m sure your just imagining it. Hagrid likes Madame Maxine, remember?” She said taking a seat at the Gryffindor table.
“He used to like Madame Maxine, ever since the Gawp thing she hasn’t really talked to him.” Ron said taking a seat next to Harry across from Hermonie.
“Oh come on that…” She started but broke off. “Look at that.” They turned to look in her direction and saw Snape and Crystal walking close together towards the teacher’s tables very engrossed in conversation. “You don’t think those two are….”
“Don’t you dare finish that sentence Hermonie the last thing I want to think of is Snape with anyone.” Ron said threateningly but his eyes wandered over to Hagrid’s empty chair.
“We have Potions next hour so we can…” Harry trailed off; he wasn’t exactly sure what they could do. With Hagrid they could ask him right out if he liked Crystal, but Snape was a different story.
Lunch ended and the trio followed the crowd out of the Great Hall. They made their way slowly down to the dungeon where Potions was. The door was opened a little, Harry started to push his way in, but he heard voices coming from inside.
“Harry come on lets go.” Ron said. “Snape‘ll take 50 points off Gryffindor if we are late.”
“Shhh. I think Snape and Crystal are in there.” He pressed his ear to the door and heard a definite female voice and Snape’s voice. But before he could make out what they were saying that familiar drawl started up behind him.
“Ease dropping Potter?” Malfoy sneered. “I guess I should tell Professor Snape about this, I’m sure he wouldn’t be too happy.”
“Tell Professor Snape what, Mr. Malfoy?” Snape’s voice came from behind Harry. He turned quickly around and found Snape glaring at him.
“Oh nothing Professor, just that Potter was trying to ease drop on your conversation.” Malfoy said casually.
“Is that true Potter?” Snape’s cold eyes bore into his.
“Harry, Hermonie, Ron! Hi how are you guys doing?” Crystal’s voice broke the silence. “Harry I needed to see you for a minute anyway. You won’t mind will you Severus? I just need to borrow him.”
“Professor Snape.” He said making an emphasis on Professor. “And yes I do mind, Potter needs to be in class today.”
“Oh I’m sure his friends can take notes for him can’t they?” Crystal said ushering Harry away from Snape. “Hermonie would you mind taking notes for him?” Hermonie shook her head.
“There you go Professor Snape.”
Harry expected Snape to yell something after her or to grab him and make him stay in class and drink samples from all the cauldrons. But nothing happened so he and Crystal walked out of the dungeon. They were at the entrance hall when Crystal finally spoke to him.
“I hope you don’t miss much in class today. I saw what that snitch Draco did to you. I didn’t want you to have to sit through class with Severus. He can be a pain sometimes.” She glanced at him then out the front door. “Well I am going to Hagrid’s to feed Ingrid and help the two of them become friends. You’re welcome to come with me. Or you can just go back to your Common room until your next class.”
“I wouldn’t mind seeing Hagrid, may I come with you?” Harry asked a little too quickly. She was a very pretty woman, but Hermonie was right she didn’t look much older than Percy. She smiled brightly.
“Of course you can come. Ingrid will be happy to have other visitors.” They walked slowly to Hagrid’s cabin enjoying the warm air blowing over them.
“I can’t wait to see this place during winter, where I lived in the States we don’t get much snow and Hagrid tells me Hogwarts gets a lot of snow.” Crystal breathed deeply of the fresh air.
“Do you like Hagrid?” Harry blurted out without meaning too. Crystal coughed on the fresh air she was breathing in. She had to stop walking so she could catch her breath.
“Wha-what did you say?” She choked out putting her hands on her knees. Harry grimaced. He shouldn’t have said anything why didn’t he keep his mouth shut.
“Oh…um…nothing.” He muttered wondering how he was going to get out of this.
“No you didn’t say nothing. I heard you, you just took me by surprise. You asked if I liked Hagrid right?” She paused and Harry nodded. “Well I’ve only known him for a few days.” She stood up straighter. “Did he ask you anything about me?” She sounded like a worried school girl, Harry had to suppress a smile.
“No, but the way he looks at you. He used to look at Madame Maxine that way.” He admitted truthfully.
“Madame Maxine. Now there is a name I can do without hearing every two seconds. I swear I’m going to go to France and meet this woman. I’m pretty sure Hagrid still has feelings for her. He mentions her just about every day.” She glared at her bright blue robes, then at a passing bird. “So you do think he might like me?” She smiled shyly at him. He nodded and couldn’t help smiling back.
“Come on Ingrid is going to get angry if we don’t feed her soon. I’ll show you how to cut the chicken’s heads off so they don’t bleed so much. She may be dragon looking but she does not like blood, one of these days I’m going to start cooking her meat and seeing if she likes it that way better.” Crystal laughed her light carefree laugh. Her cheeks had a red glow as they headed around the back of the cabin. “Hagrid must be out hunting.” Crystal mused glancing in one of the hut’s windows. Fang came bounding around the other side of the house and slobbered all over Harry’s robes. Crystal took a bucket of dead chickens from behind a bush and took them to a near-by chopping block. She started cutting the heads off two chickens at a time.
“It takes much less time when you do two at once. I tried giving them to her whole once, but she choked on the beak and almost killed herself. Do you have another class today?” She asked Harry slamming the hatchet down hard onto the chicken necks.
“Yes I have Divination.” He stepped back a few paces as blood came flying at him.
“Oh sorry about that. Well then step a little further back you don’t need to be all bloody for that class or I’m sure Professor Trelawny will think her prediction of your death has come true.” Harry laughed heartily.
“You know about Professor Trelawny’s predictions of my death?” She shook her head as she plopped a fat chicken to the almost headless chicken bucket.
“No, but I know she likes to predict death a lot mostly student deaths sometimes the faculty. I don’t think she likes me very much, when I first arrived by train and met her she said I was going to marry young, have a great deal of wealth and then die within a few years. I told her I didn’t believe in that bologna and I turned my back on her. I’m pretty sure she was mad about that. Dumbledore found it very amusing. Okay all the chickens are done now the fun part.” She stood up and picked up the headless chicken bucket and made her way to a part at the edge of the forest.
“Ingrid!” She called loudly a few birds cawed in response. “Ingrid!” Suddenly there was a rustling overhead when Harry looked up he saw Ingrid gliding slowly towards the ground. “Silly girl what are you doing flying. You need to be careful.” She dumped the chickens on the ground and Ingrid eagerly started to crunch them.
“’Ello Crystal. ‘Ello ‘Arry!” A familiar voice called from the edge of the woods. Hagrid’s large form appeared from between two large trees.
“Hello Hagrid.” Crystal said with a huge smile. “Catch anything good.”
“Naw nuttin’ good for huntin’ in the forest. Alright ‘Arry?” Harry nodded.
“Fine Hagrid. I should get back to class though I’m sure Divination will be starting soon. Thank you for, well just thank you Crystal. Bye Hagrid!” Harry jogged around Hagrid’s hut then settled to a very slow walk. Their voices were still carrying.
“How is Ingrid?” Hagrid asked.
“She’s doing great; she went out for a flight by herself today.” Crystal said. There was a clanking sound that had to be her picking up the bucket.
“She probably shouldn’t do that, there are a lot of creatures out here that might get her.” Hagrid said with a worried tone.
“Oh don’t worry about her. Her mistress taught her everything she knows about taking care of herself. She could probably fend for herself if I wasn’t around, but she gets lazy and likes to have me take care of her.” Harry stopped walking altogether and peeked around the hut to see what was going on. Crystal had set the bucket down again and was watching Ingrid eating. Hagrid was glancing from Ingrid to Crystal not seeming to know what to do. He finally put her crossbow and arrow down and stretched his arms above his head. Ingrid was almost done with the chickens when Hagrid finally said something.
“Are you going to be eating dinner in the Great Hall tonight?” He asked softly.
“I’m not sure; I’m a horrible cook so probably.” Crystal laughed then she looked up at Hagrid. “Why do you ask?”
“Well I was just wondering…that is if you want to.” He fumbled over the words took a deep breath and said, ” I shot a turkey this morning and it’s too much for me to eat alone, I was wondering if you’d like to come and share it with me, for dinner tonight that is?” The words seemed to hang in the air, Harry knew he shouldn’t be listening to this but he couldn’t pull himself away from the scene, he just had to know what she was going to say. Crystal smiled her beautiful smile at Hagrid.
“That’s very sweet of you. I would love to have dinner with you tonight. What time would you like me here?” Hagrid’s eyes sparkled.
“Seven o’clock sound good?” Harry’s feet finally heard his brain telling him to move. He walked quickly back to the castle eager to tell Ron and Hermonie what he had just witnessed.
After Divination Harry had time to tell Ron and Hermonie everything he had overheard.
“But I don’t get it. She seems to friendly with Snape. You don’t think she’d do anything to hurt Hagrid?” Hermonie worried.
“No I really don’t think she will. When I asked her if she liked Hagrid, you should have seen her eyes light up.” Harry side stepped a broken ink bottle in the hallway.
“We should get your cloak and see what’s going on with them, Harry.” Ron said. Before Harry could respond Hermonie interjected.
“No we will not. You will not sneak up on them!” Her voice came out shrilly. Ron and Harry backed away from her.
“Okay Hermonie, don’t worry.” Ron said his eyes wide in alarm.
Crystal changed quickly from her work robes to her best dress robes. She ran a hand through her mess of curls; they bounced and separated between her fingers. Satisfied with her appearance in the large oval mirror on her wall she bolted through the doorway and down to the dungeon. Severus would be waiting there for her as had become the custom. She knew he would be angry that she wouldn’t be eating with him tonight, but that couldn’t be helped. She had known from the minute Hagrid had sustained secondary burns from Ingrid that she wanted to get to know this man better. Severus would just have to wait.
The hallway she jogged down dimmed as she got nearer to Severus’ office door, it would be closed as usual and she’d have to knock. He always pretended he had a lot of work to do and that her coming down was a waste of his time, but she had known him for a long time and knew it was all an act. She knocked quickly on the door.
“Come in.” Severus’ voice echoed through the hall. She lifted the latch and pushed hard on the wooden door. It creaked slowly open to reveal the ample number of bottles lined against the wall. A single candle flame cast a strange glow on the dingy walls. Severus was sitting at his desk in the center of the room, he glanced briefly up then back down at the paper he was most likely grading.
“Your flushed Crystal, don’t tell me you ran all the way here?” His expression never changed, but his voice held more than a hint of amusement. Crystal did not answer right away trying to catch her breath and think of a way to word what she wanted to say.
“I cannot make dinner tonight, Severus.” She spit out. Severus stopped writing and looked up to study her closely. She shifted nervously, she always felt like a little kid when he looked at her in this way. He didn’t say anything for a moment. Finally he put his quill down.
“And why is that?” He interlaced his fingers and sat back in his chair. Crystal didn’t know what to say. She didn’t want to tell him the truth for fear he’d say something to Hagrid about them, but she knew she couldn’t lie, she was never able to lie to him.
“I…I have other plans.” She said looking any where but in his eyes. He sighed and stood up.
“Do as you wish." He said abruptly. "I am going to dinner.” He strode out of the office. Crystal stood there dumbfounded that she was able to get out of dinner that easily. She composed herself and walked slowly towards Hagrid’s cabin.
Harry and Ron arrived in the great hall after everyone else had begun dinner. Hermonie was sitting in her usual spot looking very displeased. She did not speak to them when they sat down.
“What’s eating you Hermonie? We aren’t going to Hagrid’s cabin. Harry forgot a book in McGonagall’s classroom and we had to go back and get it.” Ron said. Hermonie didn’t seem to be paying attention.
“Look at Snape. He looks positively livid.” She said softly. Harry looked up at Snape and confirmed Hermonie’s thoughts. Snape was in his usual place at the teachers table, but he was just sitting glaring at all the students. His gaze fell upon the Gryffindor table and Harry quickly looked away.
“It probably has something to do with Crystal.” Harry said feeling Snape’s eyes on him.
After dinner Hermonie said she wanted to get to bed early and headed off to her room. Ron and Harry waited for her to go before taking Harry’s invisibility cloak and the Marauder’s Map out. They slipped through the portrait hole of the Fat Lady and jogged down a corridor, checking the map every so often to be sure the coast was clear.
“Who is that Harry?” Ron pointed at a little figure in the entrance hall, close to their location. Harry read the words above the little figure ‘Lucius Malfoy’ they said.
“Malfoy? What is he doing at Hogwarts?” Ron whispered. Harry shook his head.
“I don’t know, but look Draco is with him as well as Snape. What is going on?” He and Ron slipped the invisibility cloak on and walked as close as they dared to the three figures. They were able to hide behind a statue of a Centaur and still be able to see what was going on. Snape looked wore a surprised expression.
“Lucius I was not expecting you so soon. How was your trip?” He asked holding out a hand to Lucius Malfoy. Lucius shook his hand slightly.
“Oh my trip as one can expect. I am here to see my children.” He put a hand on Draco’s shoulder. “Where is Crystal?”
“I..” But Snape was cut off as a gasp came from the door to the castle. Crystal stood wide eyed, the color had drained from her tanned skin. Hagrid had accompanied her to the door and was looking confused from Lucius to Snape to Crystal.
“Father what are you doing here?” Crystal uttered.
“Father?” Hagrid asked. “You’re a Malfoy?” Crystal nodded not taking her eyes off Lucius.
“These were the plans you had?” Snape asked eyeing Hagrid malevolently. Crystal did not answer.
“What are you doing here Father?” She asked again more clearly. Lucius’ mouth twisted in a cruel smile.
“I should ask you the same thing Crystal. You know why you were sent to Hogwarts, it was not for you to fraternize with….” His voice trailed off as he took in Hagrid.
“I know why you sent me here father, but I want to make more of my life than to preserve your precious blood line!” Crystal yelled her face becoming bright red; she took a step in front of Hagrid as if to protect him from anything Lucious might say.
“Do not raise your voice at me, Crystal.” He said quietly. “I will not have you ruining the plans I have made.”
“Plans? Is that all I am to you is a plan? I know I’ve been a disappointment all my life, why don’t you just let me go and work on your little Draco?!” She said furiously, but more quietly.
“I thought you had grown used to this idea, Crystal. I’m weary of arguing about it. You will marry Severus. You have known you would since you were 6 years old. If I hear that you have gone against any of my wishes I shall have you shipped back to that American school faster than you can apperate. Do I make myself clear?” Lucius said. Crystal looked on the verge of tears, but she only nodded.
“I cannot hear you.” Lucius said with a sly smile on his face.
“Yes Father.” She said clearly looking at the stone floor. Hagrid oppened his mouth as though he were going to say something, but stopped when he saw the look of rage in Lucius’ eyes.
“Now say goodbye to your friend Crystal and come with your family.” He stood with a hand on his cane and one on Draco’s shoulder waiting. Crystal turned to Hagrid. From his vantage point Harry could see tears streaming down her face. She looked up into Hagrid’s face for a long time.
“Goodbye Hagrid.” She finally said. “I’m sorry.” She whispered low enough that Harry could barely hear her, but he was sure that Hagrid had. She then turned and followed her father and Draco towards the dungeon. Snape stood for a moment where he was, he was wearing an odd expression; an expression of anger and confusion. He finally turned and followed the group.
Hagrid stood in his spot watching the doorway where they had disappeared. He turned and started to leave the castle. Harry couldn’t stay where he was any longer; he had to talk to Hagrid.
“Hagrid.” He called and jumped from behind the statue. Hagrid stopped and turned.
“’Ello ‘Arry. What are you doing…?” His eyes clouded. “You didn’t hear…or see...?” Harry nodded.
“I’m sorry. Ron and I where going to,” Harry started.
“We were just passing by Hagrid we didn’t mean anything by it.” Ron said slowly coming from behind the centaur. Hagrid looked from one boy to another, then turned around.
“It don’t matter any ‘ow. You boys go to bed.” His large frame darkened the doorway for an instant then he was gone. Harry and Ron looked at each other then down at the Maurader’s Map. They watched the figures of Lucious and Crystal walk to the dungeon, they stopped at Snape’s office and all went inside except Draco who went back to his dormitory. Harry took the cloak from Ron and threw it over them again.
“I want to know, for Hagrid’s sake.” He said to an invisible Ron.
“I’m right behind you. Well I’m actually beside you.” Ron joked, Harry was sure he was grinning. They made it to the dungeon only a few minutes behind the others. Standing outside the door they could clearly hear what was going on inside.
“No, I’ve told you I don’t have a problem with him. In fact I do like Severus, but.” Crystal’s voice was heard saying.
“There is no but Crystal. It does not matter if you like him or not the two of you will be wed in a month.” Lucius’ voice said calmly. Crystal emitted an exasperated sigh.
“Fine. It shall be. But before it is, why can’t I have friends of my own?”
“Friends? You mean like that giant? He can no more be a friend than a muggle!” Lucius laughed. “If you want to be friends with him for a month, fine; but I’m sure after that performance a few minutes ago he won’t be talking to you very much. I’m wasting time arguing with you. I have more important matters to attend too.” The door in front of the boys squeaked open and Lucius exited and disappeared down the corridors. Harry and Ron flattened themselves against the wall until Lucius’ footsteps were no longer heard. They hurried back to the Gryffindor room.
That's all I have for now you'll have to check back later if you'd like to know how the story ends. I'm not going to get into any depth with Voldemort or anything like that this is mainly a story about Crystal, Hagrid, Draco, and Severus. I hope you enjoyed it.