DISCLAIMER: All things Harry Potter belong J K Rowling. Tony Stark, SHIELD, Nick Fury, and everyone else belong to Marvel Comics / Marvel studios, as does any of the characters in the MCU that get dragged kicking and screaming into this... basically, if you recognise it, it isn’t mine… I’m just here for the fun.
An: This fic was influenced by Bakenandeggs’s ‘Influenced Out of Normality’, in an attempt to kick me off of my arse and get back to writing again… and will be a rewrite of my old “Family Ties” Buffy/HP crossover fanfic. I normally try to bend over backwards to get things as perfectly matched to canon established timelines and dates as I can, but with this one I wanted to cut loose a bit and ignore them. So, this takes place for the Marvel Cinematic Universe several months after Iron Man 2, in the summer holidays after the ‘Goblet of Fire’ school year.
This will not be an Avenger!Hermione fic or anything similar… Hermione is fifteen, a few weeks away from sixteen here…
Currently this is being written using my tablet and phone while I repair and rebuild my computer, so please excuse any mistakes made as I’m not as familiar with the software on my tablet as I am with Word.
July 14, 2011
Stark Compound, Malibu
Tony Stark grunted in response as he pulled the screwdriver out from where he’d been holding it in his teeth while he got an extra armour plate into place on the foot of the Mark Seven suit he’d been working on. His music had automatically lowered in volume when JARVIS spoke, drawing him out of his thoughts. “What is it JARVIS?” He asked, not bothering to stop as he continued to work on the main structure of the upgraded gauntlet and testing the tracking algorithms that were going to be built into the bracelets linked to the armour.
“An anomaly sir, one I believe needs your attention.” JARVIS’ voice came back, filling the workshop with what sounded like an almost unsure tone of voice.
“Anomaly?” Tony asked, raising his eyebrow at that. “Fill me in?” He asked as he put the screwdriver down and kicked himself away from his workstation, wheeling his seat over to the computer terminal next to the workbench and eying it ready for JARVIS to pull up the information for him.
“Correlating data now sir.” JARVIS’ voice replied. “Double checking, attempting confirmation.”
“What’s the hold up?” Tony asked, frowning that the screens on his terminal were still displaying the schematics he’d been working on, and not whatever anomaly JARVIS had detected. “Is there a problem with the Stark Tower project?” He asked, thinking that it would have to be something to do with the larger Arc Reactor that JARVIS had been running ready for the prototype tests before working on the main project for the new Stark Tower building.
“No sir, Stark Tower is proceeding as planned and will be habitable in seventeen days.” JARVIS responded. “Advanced construction for the planned prototype arc reactor can begin early next year if creation of the new element proceeds on schedule.”
“Badassium,” Tony nodded, still upset that they couldn’t patent that name for the element, so while officially it was to be known as ‘Starkanium’, in his mind it would always be Badassium. “So? What gives?” Tony asked, looking around his workshop idly.
“A notification on one of Mr Stane’s off-site projects,” JARVIS explained.
“Kill it.” Tony said without hesitation. Anything to do with Obadiah Stane wasn’t something he was interested in, he’d done his best to kill every single project or research team that Stane had put into place while working at Stark Industries, but there were obviously still projects here and there that had been missed. It had been three years since Stane had tried to kill him, successfully had him kidnapped and nearly stole his father’s company from him, and even now Stane’s ghost was still haunting him.
“It doesn’t appear to be one of those sorts of projects sir.” JARVIS’ voice came back. “The notification came through from Zurich Life Insurance in Great Britain, regarding one Hermione Jean Granger.”
“Who?” Tony asked, pretty damn sure that he’d never heard the name before in his life. “And why did Stane have a watch on her insurance?”
“Checking facts now sir.” JARVIS responded.
“Come on, spit it out already.” Tony groused impatiently as he drummed his fingers on the workstation.
“Hermione Jean Granger, born September nineteenth, nineteen ninety-six to then Monica Summers.” JARVIS explained at Tony’s prompting, bringing up a photo of Monica from her driver’s license.
“Let me guess, Stane’s girlfriend?” Tony rolled his eyes, he knew Obie hadn’t been married, but the idea of him having a kid out there from whatever he’d been upto was pretty believable. “Wait, I know her.” He paused, focusing on the photo of the brunette that JARVIS had pulled up for him before spinning around in his chair idly trying to remember where he recognised the face from. “Stane’s kid?” He asked, hoping not to have another generational psychopath come after him for revenge over Stane like Vanko had done.
“No sir.” JARVIS’ voice came back dryly. “According to paternity tests run at Mr Stane’s behest, Miss Granger is your daughter.” JARVIS announced, causing Tony to actually fall off his chair in shock, collapsing to the floor of the workshop in a stunned heap as the chair clattered down beside him, the chair’s wheels spinning in the silence for a few seconds.
“Daughter?” Tony asked, mouthing the word as if he was something he couldn’t even understand. “Tact JARVIS, work on it.” He muttered to himself as he tried to get his head around the concept of what JARVIS was telling him.
“Correct sir.” JARVIS’ responded. “Mr Stane had tests done in July nineteen ninety-seven when Monica Granger, then Summers, was working as a secretary at the London offices of Stark Industries.”
“She… she worked for me?” Tony asked in shock.
“Miss Summers was fired shortly afterwards, at Mr Stane’s request.” JARVIS confirmed. “I have financial records tracking a transfer of one million pounds sterling into Monica Summers’s account two days after she was dismissed from Stark Industries with a signed contract binding her silence in the matter.”
“He paid her off.” Tony winced at the idea. “Stane… he… he hid my daughter from me?” He asked in a small voice. “She doesn’t know, about me, about any of this?” Tony asked.
“There are no records of either Miss Granger or anyone linked to her attempting to contact Stark Industries at any point in her life sir.” JARVIS responded. “Mrs Granger also appears to have abided by the terms of the contract with Mr Stane and has not contacted anyone from Stark Industries or the media regarding Hermione. It is highly unlikely that Miss Granger knows of her parentage.”
“Why’d she ping on Stane’s radar now then?” Tony asked curiously.
“A car accident in North Kent, England,” JARVIS announced. “According to news reports a collision between car and heavy goods vehicle occurred on the southbound M-Twenty-Five near Swanley. Both Mr and Mrs Granger were both killed on impact.”
“Pull up everything!” Tony ordered, standing back up and righting his chair. “What about… my… my daughter?” Tony asked, shaking his head as the shock started to settle in. “That’s going to take a lot of getting used to.” He muttered as he swung around to face the monitors where JARVIS was bringing up the information.
“She was probably just going to be another chess piece in Stane’s plan, get me out of the way with the kidnapping, a few months later bring the kid out and announce the new heir of Stark Industries, so he can take control while Hermione just brings the Stark name back to the business and legitimises his claim.” Tony groused. “That’s why he kept a watch on her.” He frowned as he shook off the thought. “Pull up the results of the tests while you’re at it.” He ordered as he tried to get comfortable on his seat again while his brain was still reeling from what he was being told.
“It is possible sir.” JARVIS responded as the paternity test results flicked up on the main screen before continuing with Tony’s original question. “Miss Granger was in the back seat of the car and suffered injuries to her left arm and leg, along with bruising to her ribs and neck during the collision. None of which are believed to be life threatening. She was taken directly to the Princess Royal University Hospital at five days ago at ten seventeen London time.”
“Does she know?” Tony asked as he calculated the time difference in his head. He dreading to think what the young girl must be going through right now. He’d been twenty-one when he lost his parents, not much older than the fifteen Hermione was right now, but those six years were an age when it came to maturity.
He frowned as he flicked through the information on the screen from the paternity test. He’d run his share of them by now, in his older lifestyle he’d had more than a few women come forward claiming to be raising his child, either coming to him directly for money or going to the tabloids for the story. None of them had ever been legitimate though, but he knew after the first few he’d just gotten lazy and had ordered Stane to deal with things like that personally so it wouldn’t interfere with his life.
“Unknown sir, it is likely the hospital is treating her injuries first and will inform her once she is stable.” JARVIS responded.
“What’s the hospital like?” Tony asked as he stood up and started heading for the cars parked on the other side of his workshop. “JARVIS?” He asked when he didn’t get a reassuring answer immediately.
“Reasonable sir.” JARVIS responded after a beat. “The hospitals in England have suffered from a lack of funding due to government cutbacks, but it appears the hospital Miss Granger is recovering at is doing well despite the financial restrictions placed on their budget.”
“Find out what she needs, have her moved to private if she needs it,” Tony ordered as he stood up and started heading for the cars parked on the other side of his workshop. “And get in touch with the Aviation Division, I want the jet ready when I get there. Tell the London offices I’ll be there within the day and I want everything ready.” He ordered as he got into the silver Lamborghini
“Yes sir.” JARVIS responded quickly.
“Get me all the information you can,” Tony ordered, tapping his custom SI phone and connecting it to the cars speakers before tossing it on the wireless charging plate he’d wired into the dashboard of the car. “Get me directions from the London airport to the hospital.” He ordered after a pause as he drove out of the Malibu compound, up the curved ramp and out of the building as JARVIS activated the gates ahead of time and closed them behind him. “What did they do? Her mom, Monica?” He asked as he drove out and headed for the Pacific Coast Highway.
“Dentists sir.” JARVIS responded through the cars speakers. “Monica Summers apparently used the money from her settlement with Mr Stane to fund her way through the City of London Dental School, where she met Wendell Granger.”
“Wendell?” Tony snorted in amusement and raised his eyebrow at that before remembering Monica had named their daughter Hermione, so laughing about strange names probably wasn’t going to make a good first impression. “Fine, go on.” He muttered as he focused on driving towards the Stark Industries Aviation Division where the private Stark business jets were hangered.
“Yes sir,” JARVIS continued. “Monica and Wendell Granger were married shortly after graduation, and founded their own dental practice in North Kent. Welling to be precise, a town in the London Borough of Bexley”
“Dentists,” Tony muttered, shaking his head at the idea. “My daughter was raised by dentists,” He muttered in amusement. “You’ve double checked the information?”
“You have seen the results yourself. Mr Stane kept detailed records of the paternity tests performed. Miss Granger is undoubtedly your daughter.” JARVIS responded.
“What do we have on her?” Tony asked as he cruised along the highway towards the private Stark hangers at the Stark Industries Aviation Division. “JARVIS?” He asked when there wasn’t a response.
“Limited sir.” JARVIS responded after a pause. “I am having difficulty finding information on the private school Miss Granger attends. Prior to enrolling, her public academic record points to an intelligent child, though public academic records cease three years ago.”
“Cease?” Tony paused in thought at that, a school that kept their records and attendance completely off the grid and private? He could think of a dozen of the elite that would pay good money to have that sort of privacy for their children, him included when he actually thought about it.
“Yes sir.” JARVIS responded.
“Twitter? Facebook? Anything?” Tony asked, hoping for anything that could give him a window into his daughter’s life before meeting her.
“No sir, no digital records linked to Hermione Jean Granger are available.” JARVIS replied.
“Not helpful,” Tony muttered as he concentrated on driving and navigating through the night time highway towards the Stark Industries Aviation Division. “Contact the hospital, let them know what’s going on, send copies of the paternity tests, whatever they need. I’ll be there as soon as I can.”
“Yes sir. I shall have the legal team at the London Offices awaiting your arrival.” JARVIS confirmed as Tony drove on in silence.
It was past ten in the morning when the Stark jet finally touched down on the runways of Heathrow airport outside of London, and the cooler air was a welcoming feeling as he finally stepped out of the plane and made his way down the stairs to the car that was already waiting for him.
“Sir,” The attendant nodded respectfully as he opened the driver’s side door, standing aside for Tony to enter after he walked around the car again, obviously heading to the wrong side door at first. “I’ll have your luggage follow you.” He said professionally, pretending he didn’t see the mistake at all.
“Send it to the London offices, I’ll be there when I can.” Tony said simply at that as he got in, being used to how efficient businesses could be when his name was mentioned, and the attendant closed the door behind him. It took him a second to orientate himself to having the driver’s side on the other side of the car, but it wasn’t anything he couldn’t get used to easily enough.
“JARVIS, catch me up.” He said simply as he connected his phone through Bluetooth to the car speakers before tossing it idly onto the passenger seat then turning the ignition, it wasn’t one of his usual cars that he was used to, but it was an automatic Mercedes and the up to date stereo inside was something he could live with.
“Yes sir.” JARVIS’ voice came back as Tony started to follow the directions out of the private area where the Stark Jet was being taxied into the hangers. “The Stark lawyers have contacted the Princess Royal Hospital and informed them of Miss Granger’s parentage. The paternity tests along with other legal documents have been forwarded to the hospital as well as a request for discretion in the matter.”
“Good, how’s she doing?” He asked as he drove out of Heathrow and onto the motorway, following the directions JARVIS had pulled up on the Satnav to direct him onto the main London motorway that circled the city so he could avoid the traffic rush of driving through the smaller streets of London directly.
“They are accepting your claim of parentage to Miss Granger after reviewing the paternity tests done at Mr Stane’s behest, according to the latest communications Miss Granger is still in being treated, but a full recovery is expected.” JARVIS announced.
“Well that’s good.” Tony said hopefully, still finding it a bit of a shock that not only did he have a daughter, but a daughter that was currently in hospital in a foreign country. Of course it wasn’t foreign to her, it was her home. His brain went blank for a moment as he tried to process that thought, she lived here, his daughter was English, or British, or whatever they called themselves. He wasn’t really sure of the difference, or if there even was one really.
“Indeed sir.” JARVIS responded dryly. “The Stark Legal team will be waiting to hear from you and Miss Granger to deal with the necessary paperwork regarding Mr and Mrs Granger’s funeral arrangements.”
“I think she’s a way off managing to deal with that.” Tony muttered, remembering how he was in the weeks after his parent’s accident. “What about her education, have you managed to find her records yet?”
“Miss Granger apparently attends a private school,” JARVIS responded with the information he’d been able to find out. “I have yet to find the name or location of the school in question.” JARVIS said after a beat. “I believe the location of the school is kept secret for various reasons.”
“High society school then,” Tony mused idly, it wasn’t unheard of for rich private schools to keep their campus details as secret as possible, but he’d never heard of one being successful in keeping its entire location secret.
“Possible sir.” JARVIS responded as Tony drove on, his brain swimming in information he had, and that he didn’t have, about a daughter he’d never met, and didn’t even know what she looked like.
It took Tony just over fifty minutes and to make it out of London and around the motorway to the hospital, eying the ‘Princess Royal Hospital Visitors Parking’ sign as he approached it then drove through to find a parking spot.
Snatching his phone from the passenger seat he pocketed it as he got out, flinging the door shut behind him as he walked away before remembering to tap the lock button on the keys, he was so used to having JARVIS automatically wired into his cars at home and through his phone that he never really bothered with locking or unlocking cars anymore.
He didn’t even bother glancing at the ticket machine as slid his phone into his pocket and walked past it, he knew enough about hospitals to know there’d be surveillance cameras and probably walk around ticket inspectors as well, but he really didn’t have the time to fiddle with a ticket machine when he hadn’t even had the time to change any money into British funny money yet.
Coffee was another thing he was desperately in need of, caffeine of any sort would do at the moment really. He hadn’t slept on the plane at all, his mind working overtime as he paced around the jet and fidgeted with everything he could get his hands on, even writing some new subroutines for JARVIS while trying to keep himself distracted on the ten-hour flight over.
“Can I help you?” The nurse at the reception asked, looking up from her computer as he approached the desk, idly smiling at the fact that the nurse didn’t seem to recognise him or fawn at him, which would make this a lot easier for him to deal with.
“Hermione...” Tony asked, pausing while he grabbed his phone and pulled up the information JARVIS had brought to his attention. “Jean Granger,” He said, putting the phone down where the nurse could see the screen to get the spelling right.
“Granger,” The nurse said after taking a closer look at the phone screen being presented to her and looking on her computer again. “She was moved to a private room earlier this morning, sixth floor, room seventeen.”
“Thanks,” Tony nodded with a generous smile, nodding to her as he moved off towards the elevator, tapping his foot impatiently as he waited for the elevator to come before stepping inside. “Hermione?” He asked himself with a small smile as he glanced up at the numbers on the elevator moving slowly upwards, still wondering where the name had actually come from.
What sort of girl was she, did she have a nickname, he couldn’t really think of any diminutive forms of Hermione. Minnie maybe? The idea made him laugh again at the thought and brought up pictures of Minnie Mouse and the Disney empire in his head.
He was broken from his musings as the doors chimed before opening, letting him out onto the floor he’d pressed for. Glancing quickly at the map on the wall opposite he found room Seventeen easily enough, heading off in that direction quickly to find Hermione.
It was only a short walk from the elevator and around the corner to the room he’d been told Hermione was in, through a security checkpoint that asked for his name and who he was visiting, and passing a small gaggle of redheads that were sitting in the corridor outside talking about something animatedly, he paused as he stood by the door before knocking lightly, he waited for a moment before pushing it open and heading inside.
“Hi?” He asked quietly, looking around the room and seeing a young redhead form on a chair next to the hospital bed. It was a girl, maybe thirteen or fourteen, with long red hair that matched the older redheads he’d seen in the corridor outside, friends of Hermione he was guessing.
He took a moment to look at Hermione, his gaze automatically drawn to the casts that had already been placed on her left arm and leg, he could already make out the bruising on her neck and face and he’d bet good money there was more across her chest and stomach as well from the seatbelt.
“Who are you?” A woozy voice came from the corner, bringing Tony out of his curiosity to glance over at the girl in the chair.
“Hey,” Tony smiled over as he looked around the room for anything that would give him some sort of insight into his daughter’s life.
“She’s sleeping right now,” The girl explained in a quiet voice. “The doctors gave her something, she’d been up all-night crying.”
“Makes sense,” Tony nodded, wincing as he imagined what Hermione must be going through right now. “I’m Tony.” He explained, waving to himself vaguely as he introduced himself, smiling thankfully when he didn’t see any spark of recognition in the girl’s eyes.
“Ginny.” The girl replied with a small smile. “Are you… one of Hermione’s family?” She asked curiously, her hand edging to her pocket.
“Kinda,” Tony admitted, rubbing his fingers through his hair roughly in a nervous habit. “That your family outside?”
“Mum and Dad, Fred and George.” Ginny nodded. “What do you mean, kinda?”
“I mean kind of,” Tony groused. “It’s complicated.” He frowned, trying to figure out how to put into words what had happened. “It’s sort of something I need to talk to her about first really, not that I wouldn’t tell you, I mean, she would I guess, you’re a friend, right?” He frowned as the rambling thought got away from him. “Sorry, rambling. Lack of sleep, I flew straight here when I got the news.”
“Flew?” Ginny asked, her eyes lighting up at this for some reason.
“Yeah,” Tony nodded, rubbing his eyes with his fingers. “Los Angeles to London, not a quick flight.”
“Uhuh,” Ginny simply nodded at that, looking a bit confused.
“About ten hours in the plane, then an hour driving here from the airport.” Tony clarified when he saw the girls confused look.
“Oh,” Ginny smiled at that.
“Yeah, so, you know, sorry about the rambling.” Tony said with a shrug. “I’m sure once I’ve…” He trailed off as the door opened, looking around instinctively to see who it was he was rewarded with the sight of a doctor standing in the doorway.
“Mr Stark?” The doctor asked hesitantly.
“Yes.” Tony confirmed, turning his full attention to the doctor. “How is she?”
“Breaks alone the humerus and ulna, two mild fractures through the femur. Contusions to the neck, chest and head.” The doctor read off professionally. “There’s some swelling across the right shoulder and chest from the seat belt, common in these cases. We’ve sedated her for now to allow her to get some rest.”
“I heard,” Tony nodded with a smile towards the young redhead in the room.
“We’re monitoring her hourly for signs of a concussion, but for now the prognosis is good.” The doctor continued. “She probably won’t wake for several more hours yet.”
“No sign of a concussion?” Tony asked hopefully.
“None that we can see,” The doctor confirmed. “MRI and X-rays show no damage or swelling in the spine or brain, it looks like her left side took the brunt of the injuries.”
“That’s something,” Tony breathed out, the news his daughter had only suffered broken bones and bruises from a car crash washed over him like a wave of relief as he sagged slightly where he was standing.
“I’ll have another chair brought in for you, we have some papers for you to sign as well.” The doctor said, moving to leave the room. “Anything else you need?”
“Coffee,” Tony nodded, thankful for the offer. “And some food, for me, her,” He said, nodding towards Ginny. “And the others waiting outside. Find a room for them, somewhere they can relax.”
“Of course, we’ll have a nurse sent up with a selection from the kitchen.” The doctor said with a nod.
“Put it all on my bill,” Tony said offhand, happy with the thought of actually having some caffeine to enjoy soon, coffee, even mediocre hospital grade coffee, would be a welcome sight right now.
The doctor nodded again before leaving the room, only to return a few moments later with a nurse following him who wheeled another chair into the room, arranging it on the other side of the bed from where the existing one was before leaving quietly.
“You ok?” Tony asked, sitting in the chair that had been brought in and getting himself comfortable, careful to speak in quiet tones so he wouldn’t wake Hermione up before she was ready.
“I’ve just… I’ve not been in a hospital like this before.” Ginny admitted, looking around the room curiously. “Dad was shocked when they moved her this morning, the doctor said it was her dad that requested it, but Hermione’s dad… died in the crash.” She trailed off quietly at that.
“Ah, yeah,” Tony winced as he nodded in agreement. “Ok, as for hospitals, this is pretty much what they all look like. It’s a generic thing, white, clean, as long as you’ve got good doctors, that’s what matters right?” He asked with a shrug. “The moving her part? That was me.” He admitted. “When I heard about what had happened, I had someone get in touch with the hospital and look into private treatment if she needed it.” He explained.
“Oh,” Ginny seemed a bit confused but nodded at that information. “So, you’re Hermione’s dad?” She trailed off, looking at Tony curiously.
“Apparently,” Tony nodded, still coming to terms with the news himself. “It’s a long story kid, something I’m probably going to have to go over with her a few times anyway. Think she deserves to be told first right?” He asked, raising an eyebrow.
“Probably,” Ginny accepted that, sitting back in the chair comfortably but still staring at Tony curiously.
Tony breathed a sigh of relief at the break in questions from the young redhead, taking a moment to actually stare at the girl in the bed and look at her for the first time. Unruly brown hair was the first thing he noticed, a shade or two lighter than his own and with a bit more of a curl, but the colour reminded him of photos he’d seen of his dad when he was younger.
It was hard to gauge anything else really with the girl in the condition she was in, she was slim and probably pretty under the bruising and puffed eyes, probably from crying all night over what had happened he reminded himself.
This was certainly not how he’d pictured ever meeting his own child, he’d had thoughts about it sure, he’d had enough unprotected sex over the years that it was a miracle that Hermione was his only child, but to come face to face with her in the wake of a tragedy like this wasn’t something he’d ever wish for, not even on his enemies.