A/N: Hey everyone! Sorry it's been so long between updates. It seems I caught whatever bug that's been traveling around. I'll hopefully update Monkey Wrench by the end of the week :) Rate and Review, and remember, I don't own anything!
"Faith is a gift I have yet to receive."
-Robert Langdon, Angels and Demons
Hermione walked into McGuinty's hoping to find her friends and she was not disappointed. Tracy was behind the bar mixing drinks with an easy smile on her face and Patty and Peggy were waitressing the tables around the walls. Mikey and Jimmy were currently winning a game of pool by the looks of it. She sighed with relief and plopped down at the end of the bar. Tracy saw her and brought over a coke for her to drink. Hermione spent a good hour just watching people come in and out of the bar.
"Where's Murphy and Connor?" Hermione asked Tracy as she refilled her glass.
Tracy shrugged and replied, "They should be back in a bit. They said they had some business to take care of up in Central Square." It was getting rather late and Hermione wanted to leave, but she also wanted to check on Murphy's injury tonight.
It was near 2 am when Hermione decided she wasn't waiting for Murphy any longer. She left some money for Tracy on the bar and waved goodbye to her friends. Just as she pulled the door open, Murphy and Connor walked in.
"Hey guys," she said, holding the door open and stepping to the side so they could walk in. They nodded in greeting and walked right past her, headed straight for the back. They were wearing all black and they looked a little worse for wear, almost as if they had gotten into a fight. Hermione rolled her eyes and followed the two of them. They entered the office talking in hushed tones and glancing back at Hermione every once and a while. She got the feeling they were talking about her. "Murphy, you want me to look at that wound? Make sure you didn't open it up again with whatever tomfoolery you two got up to tonight?"
Murphy turned to face her. He looked her up and down and paused, gazing somewhat contemplatively at the top of her head where her wand held her hair back securely. Hermione felt uncomfortable and shifted from side to side until Connor coughed. Murphy shook his head. "Nah, I'm good for now. Thanks."
Hermione shrugged and walked back out to the bar where Tracy was wiping down the bar. "Leaving?" she asked her roommate. Tracy nodded so she waited for her friend to close down the bar and the pair of them left together. On the way to the dorm room, Hermione told Tracy about what had happened earlier that night.
"Wow, Herm. You're mad lucky! You got saved by the Saints!" Tracy was in awe, something Hermione couldn't understand.
"Who?" she asked.
"The Saints. It was this big thing a couple years ago with a string of murders of all mobsters in the South Boston area. They moved on to New York and then to Chicago and LA. No one thought they were coming back. Did they say that creepy prayer?" Tracy was bursting with curiousity.
"Clearly you're not all that concerned that these murderers are going free?" Hermione asked.
Tracy shrugged. "It's not like they kill people who don't deserve it. They're doing a public service if you ask me," she replied. Hermione pondered this as they entered their building and made it up to their room. She could see the similarities between what these Saints were doing and what she did with the Order of the Phoenix.
"No one knows who they are?" she asked, curious as to why even the police wouldn't have tried to find out.
"Nope. There was one guy, an FBI Agent Smecker, that was around when the Saints first surfaced. Come to think of it, the Saints came around after Murph and Conn went through that whole thing with the Russians," Tracy replied contemplatively.
"What?" Hermione asked incredulously. "What thing with the Russians?"
"Oh, well they got into a bit of a bar fight and these two Russian guys got their asses seriously kicked and they went looked for the guys the next day. Needless to say, Murphy and Connor know how to take care of themselves. The Russian guys were found dead in the alley behind where the boys live and it was Smecker that let them go seeing as how they were acting in self defense."
"Hmmm. That's interesting. And you say the first murders of all the mobsters happened after that?" Hermione asked.
"Yep. It was like nine of the top Russian guys that turned up dead in this hotel room maybe a day or two after the guys were let off," Tracy explained as she changed into her pajamas. Hermione also got herself ready for bed. The lights were turned off and both girls fell asleep, though Hermione didn't sleep as peacefully as Tracy did.
For the rest of the week, Hermione juggled classes, homework, and research. Thank Merlin for learning how to do this at Hogwarts, she thought to herself as she thumbed through newspaper clippings on the Saints of South Boston. She was looking for anything that might connect the guys to the two murderers that saved her the other night.
I really should stop referring to them as murderers, she chided herself. But that's what they do! They kill people, she argued with herself. You did it too, remember? Do you really want to rehash everything you worked through to get over the fact that you killed people? That thought certainly shut her brain up. She most certainly did not want to remember the war.
Her research yielded little results. The Saints were so named for the prayer that they say before they execute their victims, ending in the traditional Latin. There were two young men and one older man. There was an account from an eye witness at the trial for Giuseppe "Papa Joe" Yakavetta, on trial for the third time and predicted to get off. The Saints had not worn masks apparently, and included in the newspaper were three sketches of what the witnesses described the men looking like. Hermione copied them and took them back with her to the dorm.
She finished up her homework in just a few hours and when Tracy returned after her last class, the two of them met up with Peggy, Patty, Mikey, and Jimmy and they all went over to McGuinty's. The boys weren't there yet, but Tracy had a key so they all went in. Mikey and Jimmy headed straight for the pool table and Hermione helped the girls get the bar ready for opening.
Murphy walked in, followed shortly by his brother and the older looking man that Hermione was able to identify as the boys' father. She waved in greeting and returned to wiping down the bar, plotting her move to reveal what she knew. The boys would be able to help her, she was sure. If she knew anything about Death Eaters, and she knew plenty, they wouldn't stop until she was dead. That, of course, would not be happening.
Luckily, her opening came sooner than she expected. Peggy and Patty had gotten dirty washing dishes and insisted they go back to the dorms to change. Their boyfriends accompanied them, and Tracy was in the back attempting to straighten up the office.
"And Shepards we shall be, for Thee My Lord for Thee. Power hath descended forth from Thy hand, that our feet may swiftly carry out Thy command. So we shall-"
"What are ye doin'?" Murphy growled, having moved to the bar area and gripped her by the shoulders, bringing her nose to nose with him.
"I'm reciting a family prayer I found," she replied nonchalantly. She was afraid, but she wasn't about to let them know that.
"And where'd ya find this prayer?"
"Some guy, a Smecker, had it posted on his blog. It was from ages ago, but it sounded so pretty. I've been trying to memorize it ever since I figured out you three were the Saints," Hermione replied, shocking Murphy enough to get him to let go of her. "That's what I thought." She smirked triumphantly.
"Gloat all ye want, lass. We know you're not all that normal either, ain't that right?" Connor asked slyly.
Hermione responded by pulling her wand free from its holster and waving it, levitating Murphy a few feet in the air.
"Let me down! He said it!" He wasn't very happy with her. Hermione grinned and released the spell, letting Murphy fall flat on his ass. "Ow," he added unnecessarily as he stood, rubbing his backside. Hermione gave him an unapologetic look.
"Now that we've got that cleared up," she started, sliding her wand back into its holster, "can we move on?" She gave all three men a look.
"Sure thing, lass," Connor replied, taking a seat at the bar. "Pour us a drink and we'll chat." Hermione rolled her eyes but dutifully poured all three men a glass of beer and poured herself a coke. "What'd ya want ta chat about?"
"I need some help," she replied uncertainly. "Remember how I said I had a history of cleaning up scrapes the other week?" All three men nodded. "Well, back in England, there was a war in the magical community. I fought with the Order of the Phoenix against the Death Eaters. We killed most of the Death Eaters, but a dozen or so were imprisoned and a few fled the country. Apparently, they decided to settle in Boston seeing as how I got a threatening letter last week," she explained. "My two best friends are Aurors, like magical police officers, and my one friend, Harry; he killed the head of the Death Eaters. Of course, they're worried like crazy that I'm in danger, but I've been in danger since I was 11 years old. I figure we could help each other out," she concluded.
"We're listening," their father said, taking a long sip of beer. Hermione nodded and outlined what she thought was a pretty good agreement. She would patch them up the magical way, which would be much more efficient than bandages. She offered to make potions that would help them heal and stay at the top of their health. In return, Hermione wanted their help in finding this ring of Death Eaters and she wanted in on their extermination.
The three men looked at each other for a moment and each of them drained their cups. "We're in," they replied in unison. Hermione beamed and refilled their glasses just as Tracy came back grumbling about how messy boys are.