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Chapter 8: Seeking the Truth
AN: I don’t own anything from Harry Potter. This chapter contains substances abuse, strong language and some violence.
Hermione stood in the now empty room staring at the place where Draco just apparated from. What was she supposed to do? Where did he go? Was he going to come back? What was she supposed to say to everyone else still outside in the living room? She kept staring at the spot where he stood. Silent tears were running down her cheeks. How could things turn so bad so quickly?
A soft knock sounded outside the office door. Wiping her cheeks dry she let out a shaky breath and walked over to the closed door trying to figure out what she was going to say to everyone. Taking one more deep breath she opened the door.
Ginny stood on the other side. “Hi.” She said weakly, her eyes peaked over Hermione’s shoulder probably to see if Draco was in the room still.
“Hi,” Hermione said back.
“I was on my way to the loo and thought I’d check on you guys to see if everything was okay.” Ginny said and looked around the empty room one more time. “Where is Draco?” she asked.
Hermione cleared her throat. “He…he stepped out for a bit. I’m sure he meant to say goodbye, but he needed to leave to be alone for a while.” Hermione said trying to keep her voice from cracking.
“Oh Hermione. I’m sorry. I can’t believe none of us picked up on that silly question. I know how touchy all of this is for both of you, especially since it’s barely been a year since it happened.” Ginny said taking Hermione’s hand and squeezing it reassuringly.
Hermione tugged Ginny into the office and shut the door behind them. “Ginny can I ask you something?”
“Of course Hermione, anything.”
“Okay. This is probably going to seem strange, but please just humor me and don’t ask why. But…what happened? Why is Lucius in Azkaban? What did he do?” Hermione asked biting her lip.
Ginny looked at her funny. “You mean you don’t rem…”
“Please. Like I said just tell me…the truth. I need to hear it…from someone else. Please.”
Ginny looked hesitant like she didn’t want to tell it, but finally she nodded slowly. “Okay.”
Draco sat in a dark empty corner of the Leaky Cauldron shooting back Firewhiskey like it was water and he was dying of thirst. But even that wouldn’t clear his head. What the fuck happened? How the hell did his father end up in Azkaban…again? Was it Potter or Weasley…did they put him in there now that they’re both Aurors for the Ministry or was it Granger? Was she the one responsible for putting him there? He vaguely remembered Blaise saying something about her being involved with his father’s arrest.
After his fourth goblet of Firewhiskey he threw some money down on the table, enough to pay his tab then staggered out of the pub. He needed answers, so he went to the only place he could think of to get them.
He arrived in the atrium of the Ministry with a pop. He headed straight towards the Archives where they kept all the files of all registered witches and wizards in Europe. He knew exactly where to look from visiting his father at work all the time when he was a boy.
His father usually never liked him hanging around his office while he was working so Draco would walk around on his own visiting all the different departments. One day when he was about 10 years old and bored to death waiting for his father to finish his meeting with the Minister, he came across the room with all the files.
He couldn’t look at just any file though, because they were confidential and they needed some kind of personal identification to open them. A single finger print did the trick, when he came across his families file. It had everything you could possibly want to know about in that file like family trees on both his father’s side the Malfoy’s as well as his mother’s side the Blacks. There was a brief biography on each of his family members including himself. It also recorded all accomplishments as well as dishonors that happened in the family, which is why he figured if he wanted to know what, happened with his father, then he would find it there.
The Ministry was quiet on a late Saturday night; the only people there were security guards and various Ministry workers working late into the night. He walked up to the security guard outside the entrance to the archives.
“Mr. Malfoy.” The guard nodded in greeting.
“Evening. I liked to look at my file.” He said.
“Of course Sir.” The guard said and stepped aside to open the door for him.
That was a lot easier then he thought it would be. When he was a boy he would usually sneak passed all the guards to get into places. But tonight he didn’t want to cause any trouble and he was already drunk and that as bad enough.
He walked into the room and the guard shut the door behind him giving him privacy. He remembered exactly which row and section the Malfoy file was. He opened the drawer and pulled out a thick folder. To any other person the file looked to be stuffed with a few to many pages, but these folders were magically enhanced to store millions upon millions of information.
There was information about his family dating back to the early 1600’s if not earlier in here. He sat down at a large wooden table in the center of the room and opened the folder. Now that he was here, he almost didn’t want to know what happened. He was still shaking with anger over what he found out and he knew he was only going to get angrier once he knew the truth, but luckily the Firewhiskey was starting to kick in making him feel numb inside.
He came here to get answers and damn it he wasn’t leaving until he figured out what happened. Taking a deep breath he opened the file. It was organized by names of each family grouping. He noticed Granger and him had their own section added to it. He ignored it for now and went directly to his father’s section. The most recent date noted in the file was in front. And just his luck it was what he was looking for.
August 16th, 2015;
Late Sunday evening of August 13th, Lucius Malfoy was arrested and sent to Azkaban Prison for kidnapping and attempted murder of his daughter-in-law, Mrs. Hermione (Granger) Malfoy and her unborn child. Mrs. Malfoy who was eight months pregnant at the time was home alone when Lucius Malfoy broke into her home. He was able to disarm Mrs. Malfoy and knocked her unconscious before apparating her to his summer home in Paris, France.
There he continued to torture her repeatedly with the Cruciatus curse over a period of 18 hours. Lucius Malfoy’s son Mr. Draco Malfoy, a professional quidditch seeker for the Ballycastle Bats was out of town for an away game against the Chudley Cannons. His wife Mrs. Hermione Malfoy was not able to join him because healers ordered her strict bed rest for the remainder or her pregnancy.
After trying to contact her for several hours with no reply Mr. Malfoy left mid-game claiming he had a really bad feeling that something seriously bad happened since his wife never once missed his call or didn’t reply back shortly after. He managed to contact his friend Mr. Blaise Zabini to check on the house and make sure Hermione was okay. Mr. Zabini reported the house being in complete shambles on the inside when he got there; glass shattered everywhere, furniture destroyed and in pieces all over the floor, walls smashed in. On wall reported having spatters of blood against it. He found Lucius Malfoy’s cane lying on the floor of the living room and immediately reported that information to Mr. Malfoy.
Once Mr. Malfoy found out what happened he then contacted Mr. Harry Potter and Mr. Ron Weasley, both Aurors for the Ministry to help him hunt down his father and find his wife. When they found where Lucius Malfoy was keeping Mrs. Malfoy, Mr. Malfoy managed to disarm Lucius and Mr. Potter and Mr. Weasley were able to restrain him. Mr. Malfoy order Mr. Potter and Mr. Weasley to lock his father up immediately.
When they found Mrs. Malfoy, she was tortured to the point of unconsciousness, suffered from two broken legs, a broken wrist, bruised and cracked ribs, a concussion and internal bleeding. From the distress of the whole ordeal Mrs. Malfoy went into early labor shortly after arriving at St. Mungos.
The chances of survival of both mother and child were minimal. The injuries to Mrs. Malfoy’s body and the loss of so much blood were critical. And the stress of the situation could put the child’s heath in danger.
Luckily Merlin was on both Mrs. Malfoy and her baby’s side. The healers at St. Mungos managed to attend to them just in time. Mrs. Malfoy is expected to make a full recovery with very little complications. And the baby is in perfect health. You can say it was a blessing in disguise. After a horrifying event Mr. Draco and Hermione Malfoy welcomed a beautiful baby girl to they’re family on the morning of August 14th, 2015.
It was no secret that Lucius Malfoy a former Death Eater believed that pureblood wizards were superior to everyone else. And he wasn’t happy when his only son married Hermione Granger a famous well known muggleborn. But reasons behind Lucius Malfoy’s attack on Mrs. Malfoy are still unknown and the family doesn’t want to comment on it at this time.
(For a more detailed report please see Hermione Malfoy’s pensieve of the night of August 13th, 2015)
Draco sat back in his chair raking a shaky hand through his hair. He was the one who sent his father to Azkaban, not Potter, not Weasley and definitely not Hermione. He couldn’t believe his father would do something so horrible as that. The report said what happened, but it didn’t say why he did it.
He flipped to Hermione’s section of the file. It wasn’t as thick as the rest of the folder, since she was the only witch on her side of the family. It had all of her grades from Hogwarts, birth certificates of both her and Crissy, and other various articles and facts about her. In the center of her section laid a vial inside the page. It was marked August 13th, 2015 pensieve report of Lucius Malfoy.
Draco grabbed it and took it out before he chickened out. He didn’t want to see what happened, but he didn’t really have any other choice and he still needed answers. A hidden compartment in the center of the table opened up and out floated a pensieve bowl. He grabbed the round disk and moved it closer to him. Taking a deep breath he poured the vial into the pool then went inside.
13 Months ago…
The first image Draco saw was Hermione in bed reading a thick book; the bed covers barely covered her huge protruding belly. The house was peaceful and quiet. Then there was a loud sound like a slamming of a door then the sounds of breaking glass. Hermione looked up from her reading alert. He could hear heavy footsteps walking around outside the bedroom. Hermione looking scared and panicked grabbed her wand and silently slid out of bed. One hand gripping her want and the other laying protectively over her belly, she opened her bedroom door.
“Hello?” She called out. “Is anyone there?”
No one answered. Hermione walked out of the room and turned on the lights as she went down the hallway.
“Hello? Draco is that you?” she called out again.
Still no answer. Hermione went into the living room. There was a lamp knocked over and shattered into little pieces on the floor. Hermione slowly walked over to inspect it, and then held her wand out.
“Whose there? Show yourself!” she said louder.
Draco saw his father sneak up behind her, his wand at the ready. He looked horrible. His hair unkempt, skin pale and pasty, about a week’s worth of beard growth. He had a crazy look in his eyes. He looked broken and out of control. He never fully recovered from the last time he was sent to Azkaban, but Draco always assumed he would get better…not worse. And here he was clearly worse.
“You stupid girl.” Lucius sneered.
Hermione whirled around and gripped her wand tighter. “Wha…what are you doing here?” she asked backing away from him as he began to approach her.
“I plan to eliminate you.”
“What? Why?” Hermione asked looking scared now.
“If I have to answer that then you’re stupider then I thought.” He started to raise his wand.
“Expel…” Hermione started to say, but Lucius was faster.
Hermione’s wand shot out of her hand as her body flew backwards and slammed into the wall behind her. Draco winced as he heard the crack of her skull hitting the wall. He wanted to move and help her but he couldn’t move all he could was watch. Hermione barely conscious now began to slide to the ground, blood trickled down the side of her face as her head began to bleed. Lucius stocked towards her and wrapped his hand around her neck dragging her back up. Her hands tried to pry his hand off her as she struggled to breathe.
“Please. Don’t do this.” Hermione wheezed.
“Shut up!” Lucius slapped her hard across the cheek. “I’ve tried everything to get Draco to leave you. But nothing seemed to work. He kept going back to you. Then he decided to marry you. Can you believe it? A Malfoy marrying some mudblood whore. And I tell you I almost gave up. But I knew I just knew that it wouldn’t last. Eventually he would come to his senses and get rid of you once and for all. But then this happens.” Lucius stabbed his wand at Hermione’s stomach. “I knew I needed to step in and do something to get rid of this abomination. Once this thing is born it will defile the Malfoy name forever.” He spat.
“No please.” Hermione begged.
Draco was furious; this was his daughter Lucius was threatening. The scene changed then. And Draco noticed they were no longer in their home, but in a basement or dungeon of some sort. Hermione was chained to the wall, her hands shackled above her head. Her face was swollen and bleeding. And her legs lay limply beneath her barely able to hold her weight. Her left leg was clearly broken. Her eyes were shut and her head hung forward. For a second he could have sworn she wasn’t breathing. But he knew she was still alive, otherwise she wouldn’t still be here today.
Lucius stepped out of the shadows, wand pointed at her. “You just don’t know when to give up do you? You’re definitely stronger than I thought.” With a flick of his wand he broke Hermione’s right leg.
The sound of bone breaking caused Draco’s stomach to drop, but it was Hermione’s screams that tortured him.
Lucius laughed. “You stupid mudblood. He’s not coming to save you. Because he doesn’t even know you’re here.”
This wasn’t his father…it couldn’t have been. This was some kind of imposture, it had to be. His father was never one to make good choices in life, but he was never evil…more of a coward then anything. Never a monster like this.
“To him you’re nothing. A true Malfoy wouldn’t ever touch a mudblood like you. And since he doesn’t have the spine to get rid of you himself, I’ll do him a favor and do it myself.” Lucius sneered.
“Please no.” Hermione whispered.
Draco heard movement behind him; Hermione’s cries were loud enough that Lucius didn’t hear it. Draco turned to see what caused the noise. In the far corner deep in the shadows behind where Lucius stood came Potter, Weasley and himself. Lucius sent the Cruciatus curse towards Hermione. The other Draco made a move towards her, but Potter and Weasley stopped him.
“Not yet mate. If he sees you now he could kill her on the spot.” Harry whispered.
“Look at her. He’s already killing her as we speak. I have to stop him.” Draco sneered.
“Okay, but you need to take caution, no sudden movements. Try to reason with him and distract him for as long as possible. Ron and I will sneak up behind him so we’ll have him cornered. Then we’ll be able to disarm him.”
Draco nodded with a pained look on his face. “I can’t lose her.” He whispered.
Ron put a hand on his shoulder. “We know mate, she’s not going anywhere. We’ll get him, but like Harry said we need to be careful about it.”
“Okay I’m ready.” Draco said.
“Remember try to distract him for as long as possible.”
Draco nodded and stood up and walked out of the shadows. “Let her go.” Draco said to Lucius.
Lucius turned around if he was surprised that he showed up then he didn’t show it. “Ah Draco you came after all. Good this is working out just as I planned.”
“I said let her go.” Draco slowly approached him, wand gripped tightly in his hand.
“That’s not going to happen.” Lucius sneered as Hermione hung unconsciously against the wall behind him.
“Why are you doing this?” Draco asked sounding surprisingly calm.
“I gave you everything growing up. And how do you repay me, by marrying that mudblood.”
“Just let her go and we can talk about this.”
“Let her go? You honestly think I’m going to let her go? I’ll tell you what. I’ll let her go if you agree to do one thing for me.”
“What?” Draco gritted through this teeth.
“Leave her and never talk to her again. You’ll never be allowed to see her, talk to her, or touch her ever again. And you’ll marry someone else of my choosing and then we can put all of this behind us.”
“You’re mad. What makes you think I’m going to do something like that?”
Lucius walked towards Hermione and pointed his wand at her stomach. “If you don’t then I’ll kill the child. The survival of the mudblood is undetermined , given the state she’s in right now chances are she won’t make it either.”
“You monster! Get the fuck away from her!”
Harry and Ron snuck up behind Lucius, and Harry nodded to Draco giving him the go ahead. “Stupefy!” Draco shouted, wand pointing towards his father sending Lucius flying away from Hermione.
Harry grabbed Lucius’s wand as Ron sent a rope charm, tying up Lucius up as he continued to lay unconscious on the ground. Draco ran over to Hermione breaking her restraints. Still unconscious and unable to hold her own weight she collapsed forward into Draco’s arms.
“Get her out of here and to the hospital. We’ll take care of him.” Harry said.
Draco nodded then apparated him and Hermione away.
The scene changed again. They were in the hospital now. Hermione was awake and in labor. Her legs had been healed, but she was still so weak she could hardly move. The healers were about to operate on her to get the baby out. They said it was too dangerous for her to give birth the natural way due to all of her internal injuries. Draco stood by her side squeezing her hand as if his life depended on it.
“You came for me. You saved me.” Hermione whispered weakly to him.
“Of course I did love. I couldn’t let him take you away from me.” Draco told her his voice tight with emotion. “I couldn’t lose you. I don’t know what I would have done if I had. I love you Hermione so much. And I will never let him hurt you again.”
Hermione nodded weakly. “I love you too Draco.” She told him tears running down her cheeks.”
The scene ended.
Draco pulled back gasping for air, he was once again in the archives room looking at the file in front of him. He leaned over the side and emptied the contents of his stomach in the wastebasket under the table. Once he was through vomiting he was shaking so badly he could hardly see straight.
He didn’t want to believe it, but the evidence was all right there. His father had become completely mad and deranged since he last seen him. After what he did to Hermione and almost did to Crissy was unforgiveable and the bastard deserved to be locked away in prison.
Later that night Hermione lay in bed unable to sleep. Draco never did return to Blaise and Pansy’s house. Ginny told her what happened and she still couldn’t stop shaking from the chilling news. Blaise offered to go to the pub to look for Draco and talk some sense into him, but Hermione politely declined. She knew Draco needed to be alone right now. But he still hasn’t come home either and now she was starting to get worried.
Hermione hated to admit it, but she was a bit nervous having to come home alone with Crissy to a dark empty house after she found out exactly what happened to her a little over 13 months ago in this very house.
Crissy was sound asleep when they left Pansy’s house, but as soon as they got home Crissy woke up and was as fussy as ever. She must have sensed something was wrong because she wouldn’t stop crying and kept asking for Draco. It broke her heart, but she finally managed to get her to go back to sleep.
She heard the door shut and the floor board’s creak and she became alert. She hoped it was Draco. Hermione glanced at the clock on her bedside table. It was 3:00am. She took her wand in her hand just in case and hid it under the bed covers. She didn’t want to upset him any further so she decided to just wait and let him approach her when he was ready. She stayed in bed laying in the dark, heart pounding.
The bedroom door opened quietly letting in a sliver of light from the hallway, and then the door shut coating the room in darkness once more. She shut her eyes pretending to be asleep. She could hear him walking across the room. She could smell Firewhiskey coating his clothes and skin. The door to the bathroom shut and she could hear the water running.
She lay there in the dark listening to the sounds. He was clearly hurting, but she didn’t know what to do or what to say. He made it clear earlier that night that he didn’t want anything to do with her. The water turned off and shortly after the bathroom door opened and he walked out. Hermione again pretended to be sleeping. Now instead of alcohol she could smell his spicy soap that he liked to use. She heard his footsteps walking around to the other side of the bed; she then felt a shift in the bed, but not from the weight of another body. She wanted to desperately open her eyes and see what he was doing. But before she could do anything she heard the door to the bedroom open and then closes once again.
Hermione finally opened her eyes to the darkness of the once again empty bedroom. She looked over to the side of the bed and realized that he grabbed his pillow, which meant he was most likely going to sleep on the sofa tonight. She felt sick to her stomach, but at the same time relieved. At least he was home now, at least he came back. And right now that was all that mattered.
In the morning Hermione was nervous to go into the living room and kitchen to feed Crissy breakfast, but she needed to anyway, because Crissy was hungry. Quietly with Crissy in her arms she walked into the living room. Draco was still asleep on the sofa looking cramped and uncomfortable, tension was furring his brow.
She quietly padded into the kitchen passed the sofa and put Crissy in her highchair. Even though the smell of it made her sick she decided as sort of a peace offering that she would put on a pot of coffee to brew for him, strong just like he liked it.
She was feeding Crissy when Draco walked stiffly into the kitchen. She watched out of the corner of her eye as he went over to the cabinet to grab a mug and fill it with coffee. The aroma of the coffee was making her stomach turn but she refused to get sick. She continued to feed Crissy, sticking to her new motto; just let him come to her. She knew that he wouldn’t yell at her in front of Crissy in the room or at least she hoped not. And she prayed he wouldn’t lose his temper.
Draco cleared his throat. “About last night…” he started to say hoarsely.
“Don’t worry about it. I’m sorry I interfered when I shouldn’t have, it wasn’t my place.” She interrupted him.
“No I’m sorry.” She looked over at him, did he just apologized? “I shouldn’t have lashed out at you like that or said those things when you didn’t even do anything wrong. I lost my temper last night. And I’m sorry.”
Hermione shrugged trying to stay neutral on the outside, when her heart was racing on the inside. “You were angry. It was understandable.”
He scrubbed a hand over his tired face. “Yes I was angry, but that doesn’t excuse my behavior and you don’t deserve to be treated the way I treated you last night or…the way I’ve been treating you in the past eight years.”
She looked at him speechless, he started back her with an intensity in his eyes. She could tell he was being honest.
“Do you know why my father’s in Azkaban?” He asked in barely a whisper.
She broke eye contact and looked at the ground. “You don’t have to talk about it, if you don’t want to.” She said not wanting to upset him again.
“But do you?” he pushed.
Tears welled up in her eyes before she had a chance to control them. She had to turn her head away so he wouldn’t see that she was about to cry.
She nodded, “Ginny told me last night after you left.” She whispered her voice rough with emotion.
Ginny didn’t go into detail, but she knew that Lucius had completely lost his mind and kidnapped her and threatened to kill both her and Crissy if Draco didn’t leave her. Ginny told her that it was Draco who saved her and order Harry and Ron to lock Lucius up in Azkaban.
Draco walked up to Crissy who was still in her highchair and ran his hand over her soft curls. Crissy looked up at him and smiled then went back to eating pieces of cereal on her tray.
“I’m sorry.” He whispered.
Hermione couldn’t tell if he was still talking to her or Crissy or maybe both of them. She couldn’t look at him or Crissy. She got up and walked over to the kitchen sink.
“It doesn’t have to be that way.” She said softly.
“What are you talking about?” he asked.
Hermione shrugged. “This. Once we get back to our normal lives and back to Hogwarts and go our separate ways, back to our separate groups of friends and we can just go back to avoiding each other. And as long as we continue to stay away from each other than…none of this will happen. And your father will never do what he did, because you’ll probably go off and marry someone your parents both approve of and he’ll continue to be a free man.” She busied herself with doing dishes so he couldn’t see her tearing up again.
Silence stretched out between them, she would have thought he left the room, but she knew that wasn’t true, because she could feel him looking at her intently.
“But then there wouldn’t be Crissy.” He said softly, his voice sounded closer now as if he was standing right behind her.
Tears were rolling silently down her cheeks now. She put a protective hand over her stomach. She knew that, and that was the heart breaking reality of all of this. If her and Draco never got together in the future than there would be no Crissy or the other little baby growing inside her stomach, and it cut her like a knife.
She cleared her throat and squeezed her eyes shut trying to stop the tears from falling. “I know.” She whispered.
She could still feel him behind her, his voice sounded horse. “I’m going to go grab a shower.”
It wasn’t until after she heard the bedroom door shut that she broke down in tears.
They spent the remainder of the day mostly avoiding each other. Tension was thick in the air surrounding them both. Though it wasn’t a bad sort of tension, but not really a good tension either, more like a cautious tension if there was even such a thing. It was as if they were tiptoeing around each other, careful not to talk about anything to personal. Neither of them mentioned what happened last night and neither of them brought up the future either.
Draco spent most of the day playing outside in the backyard with Crissy in the late summer sun. While Hermione spent her time indoors in the cool air conditioning catching up on her reading. She only had six more parenting books to get through before she finished them all.
It was about 7 o’clock at night; Draco was in the living room playing with Crissy and her dragon Ga-ga. Hermione was in the bathroom preparing a bath for Crissy. Draco enchanted Crissy’s dragon again and was enjoying watching Crissy try to chase it around the room. It was quite entertaining. The dragon would fly across the room then wait patiently for Crissy to come and get it.
Crissy would crawl towards it and as soon as she got close enough to catch it the dragon would fly somewhere else and land and wait for Crissy to come and get it again. Crissy would follow the dragon with her eyes, a frustrated look would come across her face every time it would fly away, but then it would be replaced by a look of determination. And off she would go crawling after it.
She was halfway across the room when she stopped mid-crawl. Crissy looked up at the dragon that was perched on the arm of the chair behind Draco’s shoulder, then looked back down to the floor at her hands and knees. Out of nowhere as if she just discovered there was a faster way to get around the room besides crawling, she braced her weight on her two hands and tried to straighten her legs putting her two little feet on the ground. Slowly and a bit wobbly she started to straighten up. Standing up all by herself.
Draco became alert. “Oh my…Hermione.” He whispered as he watched Crissy slowly get her balance.
“Hermione” he called out louder this time, he leaned forward arms stretched out ready to catch Crissy if she fell over. “Hermione! Get in here now!” he yelled out.
Crissy took one wobbly step forward then another.
“What? What is it?” Hermione ran in to the room panting, wand clutched tightly in her hand. She took one look at Crissy and sank to her knees next to Draco. “Crissy!” she whispered in awe. “You’re walking! Oh my god Draco, she’s walking!”
They watched in awe as Crissy scrunched her face up in deep concentration as she took one wobbly step after the other towards them.
Hermione stretched out her arms out. “Come here Crissy, you can do it. Come here baby girl.” Hermione coaxed.
“Come on princess, come to daddy.” Draco said.
The dragon was completely forgotten as Crissy made her way to her parent’s arms. Absolutely loving all the attention she was getting from them she quickens her steps, becoming more confident in this new fun activity she just discovered. Almost a few more steps and she would be there. Crissy half ran and half pitched forward into them.
Draco caught her around the waist and lifted her high into the air above his head. Then brought her down and hugged her close. Hermione hugged her as well and leaned forward and kissed her chubby cheek repeatedly.
“Oh Crissy you did such a good job. You are such a good girl.”
Crissy giggled completely unaware of the huge accomplishment she just made. Draco and Hermione continued to hold her close giving her praises right and left. All their focus was on Crissy that they didn’t’ realize how close they were to each other.
After a few more seconds of getting squeezed and kissed by her mummy and daddy, Crissy wiggled out of their embrace back to the floor and crawled over to her pile of toys.
Both Draco and Hermione sat there on the floor silently watching Crissy now play with her toys. Draco looked over at Hermione and was surprised to see tears running down her cheeks. Without thinking her reached over and wiped away a runaway tear with the back of his finger. With a gasped she looked over at him.
“Why are you crying?” he whispered to her.
As if she was self-conscious she looked away and wiped her eyes with her hands. “I’m just happy.” She said looking at Crissy. “Do you realize what a huge stepping stone this is for her?” she smiled. “Soon she’s going to be running around all over the place getting into anything and everything. And talking in full sentences, eating on her own and oh god potty training and then there’s preschool and…”
“Whoa, slow down. Yes it was an amazing accomplishment what she just did. But it was only about 10 steps she far from being grown up; we still have plenty of time before all of that.” Draco told her.
Hermione blushed and wiped her eyes once again. “You’re right. I’m just…oh!” she looked down at her stomach, her eyes widen and her hand went to her stomach. “Whoa.” She whispered.
“What? What’s wrong? Are you going to get sick?” He asked looking around for something she could throw up in.
She shook her head and grabbed his hand and laid it on her stomach. “Do you feel that?”
He shook his head not entirely sure what he was supposed to be feeling.
She rolled her eyes and pulled his hand away so she could lift up her shirt exposing her stomach then grabbed his hand again and put it against the warm skin of her belly. He stared at his hand trying hard to concentrate on whatever it was he was supposed to be feeling instead of the feel of her soft skin beneath his hand. Hermione looked at her stomach concentrated hard biting her lip. He felt a tiny movement under his fingers. She looked up at him and their eyes met. He looked at her, then back at his hand and smiled.
“Was that?...was that…”
She nodded smiling. “Yeah it was.”
They sat there in stunned silence willing the baby to kick again.
“Does it hurt?” he asked.
“No, it feels like a tiny fluttering sensation. He’s not big enough yet to give a strong kick, but I can still feel it. I read in one of the books that once you already have a baby you’re more sensitive to movements the baby makes earlier then you normally would with your first pregnancy.”
“Huh,” he nodded. “You’re sure it’s not just gas.” He teased.
She shoved him away from her playfully. He lost his balance and fell over laughing.
“I think I would know the difference.” She said trying to look serious but failed.
She rolled her eyes trying not to smile as she focused her attention back to Crissy. Draco sat back up again and scooted closer to her. His laughing died down as he watched her. Hermione was no longer smiling, but biting her lips instead. He reached up and caught a strand of hair that fell away from her clip and pushed it behind her ear, trailing his fingers down her cheek and down the base of her throat.
Hermione sucked in a deep breath then slowly turned her head to look at him. Their eyes locked. And before he talked himself out of it. He closed the distance between them and kissed her. Instead of being shy and unsure or fighting him off, she kissed him back without having to be coaxed into it and deepened the kiss.