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Chapter 7: Partying
I left McGonagall’s office completely furious, wondering what the hell had just happened. I stormed down the corridors on the way back to the Gryffindor common room and I was clearly giving off an air of don’t even look at me and don’t even try to speak to me. Everyone in the corridors parted like the red sea as I walked through which was just as well. I swear if just one person had gotten in my way, I would probably have cursed them into oblivion. I half wanted one of them to do it. Just to give me a reason.
How dare McGonagall be so bloody patronising. And what was with the detention twice a week? And with fucking Malfoy of all people. How many times in the past seven years had we fired spells at each other and nothing had ever happened and yet now all of a sudden we get detention. Yes we had kind of destroyed a class room and yes we had kind of ever so slightly given half of our class large pussy boils, which just so happened to include our professor, but still, detention twice a week just seemed a little harsh and with Malfoy, that was just plain cruel.
I must have been walking pretty quickly, as I was soon facing the portrait hole. As I walked into the common room, I immediately came face to face with Harry, Ron and Ginny who came rushing over to meet me. I could tell that I looked simply furious as the three of them exchanged nervous glances, wondering which one would speak first.
‘Em, so what happened Hermione? I mean with McGonagall,’ Harry asked nervously.
‘Detention, twice a week until December,’ I spat furiously, watching their eyes widen in slight shock and trying their best to look sympathetic. It really was doing nothing to help though. In fact their pathetic sympathetic looks only set me more on edge, making me grit my teeth in annoyance.
‘Oh, but that’s not even the worst part,’ I continued, my arms flying about dramatically.
‘What’s the worst part?’ Ginny asked tentatively, as the other two eyed me warily.
‘Oh not only do I have detention twice a week, I have detention twice a week with fucking Malfoy of all people.’
Harry and Ginny had the good grace to at least attempt to looked horrified, but Ron just laughed out loud, ‘oh that I have to see. You and Malfoy together twice a week, so what’s the bet then? How long before she kills him?’
I simply threw my rather heavy bag at him, feeling slightly satisfied as he grunted when the bag made impact with his stomach, causing him to double over in pain. I knew there was a good reason for carrying that many books around at the one time. Serves him right. Stupid jerk.
I walked passed him, not even bothering to hide the smirk on my lips and stalked over to the best seat in the common room, throwing myself down on the couch rather dramatically.
‘So when do you have to start the detention?’ Harry asked, sitting down beside me.
‘Every Saturday afternoon and Wednesday evenings, starting tomorrow,' I said blinking back the first threat of tears. Why did I always have to cry when I was angry?
'I swear this bloody day keeps better and better,' I said, turning my face away from the others, hiding the shining tears that were threatening to spill from my eyes.
I stared into the fire, watching the flames flicker and crack. I wasn’t so much angry at McGonagall, as I was angry at myself. I mean I was so stupid. I brought this all on myself. And yet, it just seemed easier to blame McGonagall and Malfoy. Definitely Malfoy. At least I could focus all my anger on him. That wouldn't be too hard.
‘So are you gona tell us what happened? I mean what did Malfoy do?’ Harry asked somewhat nervously, clearly wondering if now was the time to be asking the questions.
‘Oh, you know nothing much. Just being the usual arrogant, obnoxious Malfoy.’
‘Right,’ Harry said slowly, ‘it’s just I don’t think I’ve ever really seen you that mad before. I figured he must have done something pretty bad to make you do that to him and in class of all places.’
I looked up at him not really sure how to answer. Even Harry thought that I had over reacted. Great! Yet deep down I knew myself that I had been out of order, it had been my fault. Deep down I knew that it hadn't been Malfoy to upset me. Not really. He had just fueled the flames. My parents were the real reason that I was upset and I had let my emotions get the better of me. I just didn't want to tell them that. I didn't want to feel their sympathy or their pitying glances. So I lied. Well not outright, but I didn't tell them truth either. I simply avoided the subject and let them think the worst of Draco Malfoy again.
‘You know what, I don’t really want to talk about it. I’d just rather forget that the whole thing happened. Some birthday this had turned out to be.’
‘Oh Hermione,’ Harry started sympathetically, ‘everything will be fine, you’ll see.’
We sat in silence for the next few minutes, with me wallowing in my own self-pity. So it was my big eighteenth birthday and so far it been one big disaster after another. I don’t know why I had actually expected anything else.
Ginny clearly decided that the wallowing had gone on for far too long and stood up, pulling me up with her. I looked at her confused, when she put both her hands on my shoulders, looking straight at me.
‘Right, this is your birthday and even though you have had a sucky day, you are going to have the most amazing night.’
‘Oh Ginny, look I’m sorry but I am just really not in the mood for a party I think would rather just sta-‘
‘Oh no you don’t,’ she interrupted, putting her hand in front of face of my face to shut me up. ‘We have spent the last week planning this party and you are going to look amazing and have a brilliant time and forget all about your shitty day. And if you even think for a minute about not going, or walk about with your face tripping you, then believe me, Hermione Granger, I will make the next year of your life a very long and very miserable one. Understood?’
‘Okay,’ I replied slowly and albeit slightly terrified. I’m sure this wasn’t the time to tell Ginny, but she looked and sounded just like her mother and just like with Mrs Weasley, I certainly wasn’t going to argue with her.
Ginny dragged me up our dormitory and literally pushed me into the shower. When I got out, she sat me down and started looking through her make- up case. Neither of us usually wore too much make- up, but I guess this was a special occasion so I could make a bit more of an effort. I sat for the next hour, while Ginny put cream after cream on my skin, poked my face and eyes with various brushes.
She eventually moved onto tackling the mess that was my hair. It was quite funny watching her standing behind me with a brush in one hand and a handful of my hair in the other, trying desperately to get the brush through my wild, tangled hair. At least it would have been funny if it hadn’t started to be extremely sore.
‘Sit still, Hermione,’ Ginny commanded, ‘you’re making this ten times harder with all your wriggling about.’
‘Well you try sitting still when someone is yanking your hair quite literally out of your head. I swear to Merlin I will no hair left after tonight, if you keep pulling big chunks of it out with that bloody hairbrush,’ I complained loudly, folding my arms across my chest just to emphasise my annoyance.
‘Well I can’t help it if the damn hairbrush won’t go through your hair. Seriously Hermione, your hair is seriously thick,’ Ginny said helplessly, waving the brush above my head again, looking as though she had no idea which bit of my hair to tackle next.
‘Try telling me something I don’t know. Why do you think I never bother with my hair?’
‘Well I have tried every spell that I know and nothing is working. I swear to all things magic that there is nothing in this world that can help to tame your hair, unless…’ she said, her eyes widening with realisation.
I watched in confusion as Ginny disappeared into the bathroom, wondering what on earth she was doing. She eventually reappeared, holding up a small purple jar that I hadn’t seen before.
‘If this doesn’t work,’ she said, beginning to open the jar and scooping out some of the cream, ‘then nothing will. Right here goes.’
There was a reason why I didn’t spend too much time with hair and make- up and this was exactly it. Ginny continued to pull and poke at my head for the next thirty minutes and I was beginning to get impatient and a little bit bored. I had been staring at the same piece of blank wall for well over an hour and my bum had gone completely numb. Except every time that I had moved slightly or even tried to talk to Ginny, I had been told to hush and keep still and been jerked back into what Ginny deemed to be the correct sitting position. In the end I had given up and tried desperately not to think about the stinging sensation in my bum, by instead staring at the wall.
When she was finally finished, she looked back at me and smiled, admiring her handiwork. She was looking me up and down like an artist examining their masterpiece. I was however doing my best not to shoot daggers at her. She ignored my deathly stares and pulled me up out of the chair and pushed me towards the mirror at the other side of the room.
The girl that stood in front of me was beautiful. It took me a moment to realise that she was in fact me. My eyes were lined with black and my eyelids were all gold and shiny, complimenting my eye colour perfectly and making my eyes look bright and huge. My skin looked so clear and smooth. My lips were soft looking and a nice cherry pinkish colour. But the thing that caused the biggest transformation, was my hair. It was no longer large and frizzy and basically bush like. Instead it was smooth and shiny and fell in soft flowing waves down my back. Now that it was smooth, it fell to my waist, rippling softly as I shook and turned my head. I tentatively put my hand up to my hair and fingered the ends, afraid that if I touched it too much, it would suddenly frizz up.
I turned to Ginny, who was looking at me with a huge grin on her face.
‘Ginny, I…’ I didn’t know what to say. ‘It’s amazing, thank you,’ I said pulling her into a tight hug. ‘How did you?’ I asked pointing to my hair.
‘George,’ she said, holding out a jar for me to look at. ‘That boy is a genius. His cosmetics range is going to be huge. Remind to write to him tomorrow cause he had better be planning on sending me some of this stuff. You look amazing by the way. Now all you need is to change. What you planning to wear?’
‘Um, I don’t know, I was thinking maybe jeans and a top.’
‘Jeans!' Ginny said in a tone of complete and utter horror. I may as well as just have told her that I was planning to wear my pyjamas. 'There is no way you are wearing jeans to your eighteenth birthday party. Hold on a sec,' she said disappearing behind me to rake through her trunk. I watched (and dived out of the way) as she started to throw clothes all across until the room, until she clearly found what she was looking for.
Finally Ginny stopped what she doing and turned around facing me holding out a bright red dress. ‘I bought this last year. Don’t know what I was thinking. Me and red will never get on. Not with my hair. You have to wear this. You’ll look amazing in it.’
I took the dress, unsure, it was so totally not me, but I as I glanced in the mirror and caught a glimpse of the girl standing in front of me, looking better than she had ever done in her life, I figured why the hell not.
‘Wow Hermione,’ Ginny breathed when I finally came out of the bathroom. ‘You look so hot. That dress was made for you.’
‘Oh Ginny I don’t know. Isn’t it a bit… revealing?’
The dress had thin red straps that went into a v cut neck at the front and went half way my back at the back of the dress. It clung very tightly all the way down my body and then flared out at my waist, stopping mid-way between my calf and my thigh, showing way more leg than I had ever done before.
‘Hermione stop being a prude. This is your last year of being a teenager. Live a little! Besides you look amazing and I forbid you from changing.’
I looked at my reflection in the mirror and for the first time in my life, I had to admit that I looked good. That was until my eyes fell onto my arm and whatever happy feelings I had immediately disappeared.
‘Ginny, I can’t wear this.’
‘And why not?’ she said exasperated..
‘Because of this,’ I said quietly, holding my arm out and showing Ginny the scar on my arm that I usually took such pains to hide. ‘I just can’t. I don’t want people to see it.’
‘Sweetie, you can’t hide it forever,' Ginny said giving me a small smile. 'Look, why don’t you put this bracelet on,' she said picking up one of her large solid gold bangles, 'push it up your arm and that should hide it and if you really have to, put that cardigan on.’
I took the bracelet gratefully and pushed it up my arm, so that it covered most of the word written on my arm. You could only I grabbed the black cardigan that Ginny had thrown to me and put it on, feeling myself relax instantly at knowing that it was hidden and that I wasn’t showing nearly as much flesh as before.
I took one last look in the mirror and gave myself a small smile. I would show Ron exactly what he was missing.
The walk to the room of requirement seemed to take an age and even though the halls were pretty quiet, we still attracted a lot of attention. Every head that we passed turned and stared. Probably more so at Ginny that at me. I had looked the best that I had in my life and yet I still was nowhere near the same league as Ginny. She looked drop dead gorgeous. She had opted for a dark blue dress that made her pale skin seem almost translucent. Her red hair was curled into gorgeous curls that cascaded down her back and her lips were painted a brilliant shade of red. I really couldn’t wait to see Harry’s face when he saw her.
As people continued to stare, I grew increasingly nervous. I started to feel like I was exposing way too much flesh. I pulled my cardigan further around me and did up a few of the buttons at the front to hide my cleavage, ignoring Ginny’s sighs and disapproving stares.
As we reached the room of the requirement, I felt my pulse racing. This was so unlike me. A party, breaking the rules, the hair, the outfit. A small part of me couldn’t help but feel excited by it though. I couldn’t help but wonder what Ron would think of my new look. I knew I was supposed to be forgetting him, but a very small part of me that I pretty much refused to acknowledge still hoped for a big reaction from him. I wanted him to want me.
Taking a deep breath, we entered the room of requirement. My jaw dropped as I looked around the room. The room had been transformed into what was a very classy looking night club. The room was dark with lights flashing on the dance floor; cushion chairs were dotted around tables at the edge of the room. I couldn’t wait to have a go in one of those later. At the end of the room there stood a bar that Dean Thomas had taken over, playing the role of bartender. The room was already filled with loud pulsing music that made the whole room shake and people were already filling the dance floor, laughing and dancing away. There were way more people here than I had thought.
‘I thought you said that it was a small party, with just the Gryffindor’s,’ I said turning to Ginny, my voice slightly more hysterically than I intended. I did not need even more witnesses to my revealing dress and awful dancing.
‘Yeah well, word might have spread a bit. We just invited the sixth and seventh year Ravenclaws and Hufflepuffs. Look chill Hermione. You’re not a prefect anymore, so relax. It’s your party. Enjoy it,’ she said pulling me by the arm through the crowd.
I followed Ginny through the crowd feeling like I was completely out of my comfort zone. The music was loud and the lights were flashing and I couldn’t help but feel like a rabbit caught in the headlights. I realised that we were heading to the bar and again I began to panic. I really couldn’t and shouldn’t be drinking. I may be of age, but I still couldn’t bring myself to let go and so I ordered a butter beer and could see Ginny roll her eyes as she ordered a fire whisky, which she downed in one. I stared at her with wide eyes. Since when had she been such a party animal.
Ginny then pulled me into my personal hell quite literally, as she pulled me right into the middle of the dance floor. Ginny immediately put her arms in the air and started to shake her hips in time to the music, while I stood rather pathetically in front of her, shuffling my feet from side to side, completely aware of how awkward and out of place I looked.
I was even more embarrassed when Neville came over and told me how amazing I looked and asked me danced. I went bright red and just shook my head. I was even more mortified when a Ravenclaw sixth year that I had never even met before came over and did the same. Except when he asked me, his gaze never seemed to leave my cleavage. I was definitely going to kill Ginny later for putting me in this dress.
I was just hoping that ground was going to swallow me up, when Parvati and Lavender came over to us and started to talk.
‘Hey guys, this party is so amazing,’ Parvati shouted to us over the insanely loud music.
‘Thanks, I know. We did a good job even if I do say so myself,’ Ginny answered, leaning in to shout over over the music.
‘I can’t believe you guys managed to pull this off and there are so many gorgeous guys here,’ Parvati gushed, scanning the far end of the room where most of the guys stood, at the furthest point possible from the girls. We may have looked like we were in a nightclub, but this was definitely still a high school party.
‘And most of them seem to be after Hermione,’ Ginny said grinning in my direction.
I just rolled my eyes at her, knowing full well that she was just flattering me.
‘Oh come on Hermione,’ Ginny said exasperatedly, ‘you must have noticed how every guy in the room is staring at you.’
I of course had not noticed this little fact but on scanning the room, I did notice that most people were staring in our general direction, but then Ginny looked amazing. Nobody would be looking at me, when she was beside me.
‘No they’re not. They’re staring at you. Aren’t they?’ I asked questioningly, seeming even more unsure.
‘Oh come on Hermione. Everyone here knows that I’m taken and besides I’m not the one who everyone had been asking to dance.’
‘Yeah Hermione,’ Pavati joined in ‘I mean that Ravenclaw guy with the blue shirt on is gorgeous. You’re single, make the most of it.’
‘Yes well some of us are already taken and already have gorgeous boyfriends,’ Lavender said a little louder than was necessary, whilst shooting a meaningful glance in my direction.
It was all I could do not to snort in her face right there and then. Yes I had liked Ron, but in no way could he have ever been described as gorgeous. Cute in a goofy sort of way, but gorgeous, no in a million years. And as for her little glance, she was clearly trying to tell me to steer clear of her guy and a part of me wanted to smack her right in the mouth for it, but I guess I had already gotten into enough trouble for that today.
I just smiled innocently at her whilst saying, ‘so where is darling Won- Won then? I thought he would be with you.’
Her eyes narrowed darkly at my little comment, clearly trying to work out if I was making fun of her.
‘He’s actually with Harry in Hogsmeade getting more supplies. He’s such a rebel. It’s such a turn on. Don’t you think?’
It was my turn to narrow my eyes at her, my jaw clenching in frustration. She knew how me and Ron had felt about each other before the war and was clearly trying to rub my nose in the fact that he was with her. That he had chosen her.
‘No actually. I think the whole bad boy thing is totally over rated. And anyway, Ron is not a bad boy by any means.’
‘Oh, really,’ she replied with a smirk on her face, ‘I’ve found that he can be a very, very bad boy,’ she said in a slow and suggestive voice.
I could tell that my expression had completely frozen and my forced smile had now completely dropped, leaving a slightly stunned expression on my face, that no matter how hard I tried to get rid of, it wouldn’t budge.
‘Ew, that’s my brother you’re talking about Lavender. I really don’t need to hear all the gory details of his love life. I definitely need another drink now.’
Ginny pulled me towards the bar but my mind was still with what Lavender had just said. What the hell did she mean? Had he slept with her? He kissed me and didn’t speak to me all summer and yet he slept with her within two weeks of coming back to school.
‘Hermione, do you want another butter beer?’ Ginny asked, breaking my trance.
‘Do you want another butter beer?’ Ginny said slowly, clearly annoyed at having to repeat herself.
‘Em yeah. No wait. Give me a fire whiskey this time.’ Butter beer was definitely not strong enough. I had never drunk before, but if ever there was a time to start, I had a feeling that this could be it.
Ginny looked at me half with shock and half with pride as I downed the drink in one and quickly ordered another, enjoying the feeling of the smooth liquid burning its way down my throat and heating up my insides.
Just as I downed my second drink, Harry appeared behind Ginny, snaking his arms around her waist and turning her around to face him. I watched as his eyes widened as they lingered over her full red lips and her revealing dress. He gulped as he leaned in to kiss her and I couldn’t help but giggle slightly, when they broke apart and he had bright red lipstick smeared across his face, matching his very flushed cheeks.
‘Em so, em, hi, em, Hermione. Having a good time?’ he said breathlessly.
‘Yeah thanks. Thanks for organising it for me.’
‘No probs. You look great by the way. You not dancing?’ he asked, nodding towards the now very full dance floor.
‘Oh not just now. Maybe later. I think I’ll just stay here and have another drink.’
He nodded slightly, before looking at Ginny again.
‘You em, mind if we dance?’
‘No don’t be silly. I’ll be fine.’
I watched as Harry pulled Ginny onto the dance floor and began to twirl her around the dance floor. They looked so happy together, so at ease with one another. Harry then pulled Ginny into him and wrapped his arms around her waist, while she put hers around his neck. They continued to stay like that for a while, looking each other in the eyes, occasionally leaning forward to whisper in each other’s ears. I was so happy for them both. Especially Harry. Seeing him so at ease and so happy. He truly deserved it, although I couldn’t help but feel a stab of jealousy that they had each other and were so perfect for each other when I had no one.
I wallowed in my self- pity for a while longer, until another red head on the dance floor caught my attention. This time however, I did not get the happy feeling watching him with his partner. Lavender seemed to be gyrating her hips against Ron and dancing around him in a way that reminded me very much of a stripper. Ron had a completely stupid expression on his face and may as well have had his tongue hanging out.
Lavender then spun around him and pressed herself up against him, throwing her arms around his neck. Her eyes found mine from across the room and I swear I saw her smirk before she pulled her gaze back to her partner and brought her lips crashing down onto his.
My throat seemed to constrict tightly making it hard for me to breathe and my hands instinctively balled into fists by my side. I didn’t know what I was more angry about; the fact that Ron had so evidently moved on and forgotten about me or the fact that Lavender had turned it into some stupid little competition that I was evidently losing.
So much for him noticing me. He hadn’t even given me a second glance all evening, never mind speaking to me.I knew it was petty because I didn’t want to be with him, but a bit of recognition would have been nice. But then again I really didn’t know what I had expected. Ron was always a selfish idiot. Ron would always do what Ron wanted to do and to hell with everyone else. Well he could have her. She was entirely welcome to him.
I forced myself to turn away from the couple, as they were currently quite literally eating each other’s faces and it was only making me even more furious. So I did the least logical thing that I could do and I ordered another drink. And then another drink. And then another.
My brain was feeling nice and warm and fuzzy as the alcohol coursed its way around my body. My body was feeling completely relaxed as I pushed the thought of a certain someone out of my head. I was singing along with the music, when I became aware of a presence sitting beside me.
I glanced to the side to the side to see a familiar face sitting beside me, smiling at me, his eyes running over my body appreciatively.
‘Hey, Hermione. You look amazing. You want to dance?’
Cormac McGlaggen held his hand out in front of me and a part of me told me to walk away. We had briefly had a thing in sixth year when we had made out so I could get back at Ron and then I hadn’t been able to get rid of him. However my brain wasn’t quite working properly and had kind of stopped at the whole ‘get back at Ron’ part. It had worked before, why not now.
I took Cormac’s hand and let him lead me over the dance floor. My shyness and fear of dancing was evidently gone, replaced by a new found alcohol induced confidence as I immediately moved my hips in time to the music, pressing myself up against him, far closer than I would ever normally allow myself to be. I would show Ron that I was over him and I would show Lavender that I was over him too. He placed his hands on my back and then started to slide them further and further down, until his left hand was resting on my bum. I immediately stiffened, and looked quickly to his hand, ready to push it away. However it was then that I caught Ron’s eye and saw his furious expression as his eyes rested on the hand currently squeezing my bum and so I decided to push Ron even further. I would show Ron that he wasn’t the only one who had moved on.
I lifted my head up, bringing my lips close to Cormac’s. He licked his lips and his eyes looked hungry as he looked at me and slowly started to bring his mouth towards mine, but he was being far too slow for my liking and so I stood on the tips of my toes and pushed my mouth up to meet his.
He responded immediately, pushing his tongue into my mouth and swirling it about inside mine.'Oh yeah,' my brain reminded me, 'this is why I had hid from him the last time.' The sloppy and slobbery kisses.
I pulled away from him, trying to get some air and wiped the saliva from around my mouth when a brief moment of sanity returned. Shit. What the hell was I doing? Why the hell was I kissing Cormac? This had to be the most stupid ridiculous plan ever.
However, I really didn’t have much time to think of an escape plan, as Cormac’s open mouth was advancing towards mine again.
Although as it turned out, an escape plan wasn’t necessary. As his mouth engulfed mine for the second time, I felt my stomach start to squirm in a really uncomfortable way and I was pretty sure it was more than just his kissing that was making my stomach heave.
I just about managed to push him off of me; which was pretty difficult considering how hard he’d latched himself onto me, before I turned and ran, desperate to find a bathroom. However I didn’t even make it out of the door of the room of requirement, before three things happened in succession; first my stomach lurched as I threw up all over the floor; secondly my knees buckled and I slid to the ground and thirdly, I passed out on the hard, stone cold floor.
A/N- I am so sorry this update has taken a little longer than usual. Things have just been really hectic just now, but it's finally here and I hope you enjoy it. I know there isn't any Draco in this chapter, but the next chapter hopefully makes up for it.
Also thanks so much to the everyone reading and reviewing. It seriously makes me so happy watching the number of reads and number of reviews go up. It makes me want to write even more and make this story so much better, so please leave a short review if you're enjoying it so far.