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Chapter 16: Changed
AN- I would just like to say thanks to everyone who has taken the time to read my story and leave a review. It seriously has meant a lot to me. I absolutely loved this story and I had it all mapped out in my head and I thought it was going to be pretty good. Unfortunately circumstances have changed big time recently and there is just no way that I have any time for writing just now and I don't see that changing anytime soon. I'm really sorry to let people down by not giving you an ending and stopping right when things were getting good, but I don't want to keep people hanging on when a new chapter isn't coming.
Thanks again for all the reviews and the reads and maybe someday I might be able to come back and finish this. Lorraine x
I was hiding. There was no other way to describe it. It was at times like these I wondered why the sorting hat had put me into Gryffindor. I was being a coward and I didn’t even care. He had made a complete and utter fool of me. Only last night I had been trying to convince the others that he had changed. God, I had prattled on and on about I had seen a different side to him; how he had been nice to me. Now, not even twelve hours later I had been proved completely and utterly wrong. Okay he hadn’t called me a mudblood himself, but he had stood and laughed when someone else had. And they had all seen it.
I should have known better than to trust a Malfoy. I should have known better than to think that he would want to be friends with me. I should have known better than to have even thought of trying to convince Ron and Harry that he had changed. I was supposed to be the smart one and yet I was the one who had been made a fool of.
At least I wasn’t crying anymore. No the tears had stopped a while ago. When I had left the dungeons all those hours ago, I had fought so hard to keep the tears at bay, practically running past the few people who were in the corridors when classes were still on. I ran without really knowing where I was going. All I knew was that I wanted to be far away from him. Far away from everyone. I didn’t care that I was missing classes. I couldn’t sit in a class and pretend that everything was fine.
I only allowed the tears to come when I reached my destination. I hadn’t really been aiming to come here, but now that I was here, it occurred to me that it really was the only place that I could have gone. I found myself in one of the top floors of the castle, in a sort of curved alcove, with windows all around. It was a place I had been many times before throughout the years. My own special place where I came to think. I had found it during third year when Harry and Ron had fallen out with me and I had continued to come here when things got tough. I was here nearly once a week when Ron and Lavender had been going out. I sat in my usual spot, on a window ledge at the left hand side, with the view that overlooked the lake. I loved sitting here and watching life below. People rushing about below heading to classes; Hagrid pottering about at the edge of the forest, the first years having their flying lessons; that had been funny to watch.
Yes my tears had stopped, leaving me feeling nothing but complete and utter mortification and shame, wondering how on earth I was ever going to face the others again. Then came the anger which was shortly followed by complete and utter fury. How dare he behave like that? He was the one who had been trying to convince me that he had changed. He was the one who had said he wanted to be friends. Well he had a funny way of showing it. I had given him a chance again, against my better judgement and he had betrayed me. I wouldn’t make the same mistake again.
I don’t know how long I sat there for, with my head resting against the cool glass, staring at the world below, but I was certainly in no hurry to move, perfectly happy sitting here, hiding from everyone. I groaned in annoyance when suddenly I heard footsteps coming from along the corridor. I was not ready to see anyone yet. No doubt it would be Harry. He would have probably gone to get the map as soon as classes had ended and found me using that. Why couldn’t people understand that sometimes you just wanted to be alone? Reluctantly I lifted my head, expecting to come face to face with familiar green eyes and a concerned expression, but was immediately taken aback when I was met with the face of the last person in the world that I wanted to see.
‘So this is where you’re hiding,’ he said in his familiar drawl, leaning casually against the wall at the entrance to the alcove, his arms folded in front of his chest. His arrogant stance and the fact that he was herein my personal space, acting like nothing had happened made me see red.
‘What is making fun of me in class not enough for you now? You actually have to some and seek me to taunt? Come on let’s hear it then,’ I said, spinning around in my seat to put my feet on the floor, facing him fully, my eyes hard.
‘What are you talking about?’ he asked in confusion, his casual stance becoming more rigid.
‘Well I assume that there is a reason why you’re here. It’s not like you were taking a leisurely stroll down dead ends of the top floor of the castle.’
His furrowed his brow, narrowing his eyes, but remained silent. ‘You know what fine, screw this,’ I said standing up, it just didn’t feel right to be sitting down when I was so angry, ‘ I am not going to play your games anymore. I have had enough of you and your bullshit.’
I picked up my bag and made a move to get past him, but he held out an arm to block my exit.
‘Get out of my way,’ I said slowly, fury emanating out of every syllable I uttered.
‘Not until you tell me what is going on,’ he said trying to stay calm, but I could see the anger beginning to build up behind his grey eyes.
I made a move to get past him again, but he was not only quicker than me, but also considerably stronger and he didn’t even move an inch when I tried to push past him.
‘Get out of my way,’ I screeched at him again, trying to push past him once more, but failing miserably.
‘Not until you tell me what you’re problem is,’ he hissed back at me through clenched teeth, his voice low. He leaned forward as he spoke, looking furiously at me and it was only then that I realised how close he was to me. Or how close I was to him. There were mere centimetres between us and the thought made me very uncomfortable.
‘You are my problem,’ I retorted, taking a step away from him before turning around and stomping back to the window, trying to put as much distance between us as possible. ‘You and all your crap and your lies and your little mind tricks. I’ve had enough of them all,’ I snapped, throwing my bag on the floor in frustration and throwing myself back onto the window seat like a petulant child.
‘Again, what are you talking about? What lies have I told?’ he said questioningly, taking his arm down away from the wall. My escape route was clear and I considered making a run for it for all of two seconds but quickly dismissed the idea. He may have bought his way onto the quidditch team, but he was still a half decent seeker with pretty quick reflexes. So since running away was out of the equation, I was left with the option of staying and fighting.
‘Oh, I’ve changed, I’m not the person I was, I want to be your friend,’ I answered using my most sarcastic voice and rolling my eyes as I mimicked him.
‘I wasn’t lying when I said all of that,’ he replied with narrowed eyes, ‘I have changed. I thought you believed that,’ he said suddenly serious, sounding almost annoyed.
‘You know I actually did believe it. I thought that you had changed. I actually tried to convince the others that you were so different now. Well more bloody fool me,’ I trailed off quietly.
‘You told them I had changed? Potter and Weasley?’ he questioned, looking at me once again with a questioning gaze.
‘I don’t know why I even bothered,’ I muttered, looking away from him, not wanting him to see the hurt that was in my eyes.
‘But you… you stood up for me?’ he said slowly, disbelief etched into his voice.
‘Yes and now I’m the one who is made to look like a complete idiot yet again.’
‘Don’t say that,’ he responded quickly, taking a step closer towards me, but stopping as I recoiled away, ‘I have changed. You know I have.’
‘No I thought you had, but now I know for sure that you’re the same old Malfoy that you’ve always been.’
‘You know that that’s not true.’
‘Really and how exactly would I know that? One minute you’re all ‘let’s be friends’ and the next you’re calling me a mudblood.’ He closed his eyes suddenly as I uttered that word, as if it pained him to hear it. All it did was anger me even more.
‘I never called you that,’ he said, looking thoroughly confused.
‘No you just stood by and laughed while Pansy did,’ I replied, my voice cracking with emotion and hurt at the memory.
‘What? I wasn’t laughing,’ he said adamantly.
‘Smirking, laughing, it’s the same damn thing. Whatever you did, or didn’t do you clearly agreed with her.’
‘No, I didn’t.’
‘Well you were hardly disagreeing with her,’ I said rather stubbornly not willing to back down, even though I could feel that I was losing some of my anger. He was partly right, he hadn’t been the one to call me a mudblood, but he had laughed about it.
‘And what exactly did you want me to do,’ he asked exasperated, running a hand through his hair, making it stick up slightly as he did. ‘You were the one that didn’t want to be seen anywhere near me. You’re the one who was oh so concerned about how every would react to us being friends. Make up you bloody mind. If you want me to defend you then I will gladly do it, but I thought you wouldn’t want me defending you,’ he said looking at the floor, rather despondently.
‘When did I say that I didn’t want to be seen anywhere near you?’ I asked bewildered, curiosity replacing my anger.
‘Oh, come off it Hermione. I am not idiot. I saw the way you looked the other day when you thought that people were coming, when they nearly saw us together.’
Oh, I had hoped he hadn’t seen that. Even now I could see the hurt that was in his face, even if he was trying hard to show that it wasn’t bothering him.
‘I… that’s not… that’s beside the point and as it turns out, I was right not to want you anywhere near me.’
‘Why, what have I done wrong?’ he demanded, ‘Tell me one thing that I have done to make you not trust me since we came back to Hogwarts?’ he said sounding more confident.
‘Well there was… when you…’ I trailed off again, as his eyebrows raised in victory. Why could I not think of anything? Surely he must have done something, but my mind was blank and he knew it.
‘So if I haven’t done anything wrong, then what is the problem?’ He clearly sensed weakness in my hesitation and took a step towards me.
I had nothing. I had no reply. He was right. He hadn’t done anything to me since we had come back to Hogwarts. If anything, he had been there for me more than some of the others had been. He had certainly been there for me more than Ron had and that thought unsettled me. Yes, he may have changed, but I still didn’t understand why and I still certainly didn’t understand why he was singling me out as someone that he wanted to be friends with. All of the conversations that we had, the looks, the glances, I just didn’t understand it. I didn’t understand him.
‘There isn’t a problem,’ I sighed in reply, yet not quite able to meet his eyes.
‘And yet something tells me that’s not quite true,’ he muttered.
I took a quick glance up at him, to find that he was staring straight at me, as if he could try and read my mind and work out what I was thinking, but when I tore my gaze away to look back at the floor, he cried out again in frustration, ‘Just tell me.’
‘I just don’t understand. I don’t understand why you’re here,’ I cried out, my emotions getting the better of me.
‘I came to see if you were alright,’ he said, still sounding confused, not understanding what I was meaning.
‘Exactly! That’s what I don’t understand. You’ve never liked me and then all of a sudden you’re actually wanting to have conversations with me and saying all of these things and making me think that you…’ I stopped abruptly, stopping myself just in time, ‘I just don’t get it,’ I finished lamely.
‘Making you think that I what?’ he questioned, stepping closer to me again. Of course he would have picked up on that part. There really was no hiding anything from him.
‘Nothing,’ I said raising my head determinedly, my mouth set in a hard line. There was no way that I was going to tell him what I had been about to say.
‘Okay, well do you want me to stop, talking to you I mean. Because I will if that’s what you want.’
I looked up into his face that was, at the moment looking decidedly like a little puppy that had just been given into trouble. If he’d had floppy ears, I swear they would have just drooped. I thought about what he had said. Did I want him to stop talking to me? For things to be like they had been before. For us just to ignore each other and pretend like we didn’t know all of these things about each other. My stomach shifted uncomfortably at the thought.
‘No.’ I answered simply. I didn’t want things to go back to how they had been. I wasn’t sure if we would ever be able to go back to how things had been before and I wasn’t really sure that I wanted them to.
He looked up, looking almost disbelieving, almost hopeful. ‘You don’t want me to stop talking to you.’
‘No I don’t,’ I said quietly looking back at him.
For a moment, I wondered if he had heard what I said, but when he nodded his head slowly I knew that he had and I could swear that there was almost a trace of a smile in his lips. He visibly relaxed and closed the distance between us, resting against the wall beside me seat.
‘So why did you run away then? I mean it was only Pansy,’ he shrugged, looking down at me once more.
‘And that makes it better then, it was only Pansy so of course I should let her call me a mudblood.’ I gritted my teeth again in annoyance. Just when I thought we were getting somewhere.
‘No, that’s not what I meant,’ he answered in frustration once more, ‘I mean usually if she, or even if I called you any name you would just look at us like we were so beneath you, like our words meant absolutely nothing, or else you would come up with some absolutely scathing retort before walking away without even blinking. It used to drive me crazy.’
‘I don’t give a damn about what Pansy said,’ I said, spitting her name, ‘I don’t care about what she thinks about me.’
‘So then why run away?’ he challenged.
‘I wasn’t running from her,’ I cried out, without thinking.
‘Well then who were you…’
‘You, I was running from you,’ I blurted out in exasperation.
‘Why…’ he shook his head confused.
‘Because you told me that you’d changed and I believed that you’d changed and then you, it seemed like you agreed with her and I just…’ I trailed off as images flashed through my mind, threatening to overpower me; thoughts of Draco’s expression, Pansy’s words, Professor Haven’s glares, Ron’s hurt expression. I closed my eyes quickly, realising in horror that my eyes were prickling with frustrated and humiliated tears. Never let them see you cry I reminded myself angrily. Never show them that they’ve hurt you.
I was aware that he was standing right in front of me and when I heard his slow movements; I opened my eyes to see that he had he crouched down, so that he was resting on the tips of his toes, one hand still resting on the stone wall beside us for support. Now I was forced to look down at him, regardless of whether I wanted to or not.
‘Hermione, I have changed. I don’t ever want to hurt you or anyone else again. I promise you that I will never call you a… that word again. That is not how I think of you anymore. I haven’t thought about you that way for quite a while.’
‘You used to,’ I said quietly, ‘you used to go out of your way to try and be mean to me.
‘No actually I didn’t. Well, I mean I did sometimes. You were infuriatingly perfect all of the time, but it was much more fun to wind up Potter and Weasley. They would always flip, but you would just walk away. I think I only really got to you once.’
‘Yeah that would be the time when I slapped you,’ I said smiling widely at the memory.
‘You don’t need to look quite so happy about it,’ he grumbled, looking a bit put out.
‘Well you deserved it.’
‘Hmm, you didn’t need to hit quite that hard though.’
‘Aw did I hurt you,’ I asked in a teasing voice.
‘I had a hand print on my face for hours after,’ he said incredulously, ‘it was even sore the next day.’
‘Seriously,’ I said thinking of how proud Ron and Harry would be. ‘I would say that I’m sorry, but I’m afraid that would be a lie.’
‘Yeah I know and you’re right I did deserve it,’ he conceded, smiling shyly at me. ‘So why was your day so bad? What happened? Something to do with Weasley?’
‘Hmm,’ I answered reluctantly, my mood plummeting.
‘Want to talk about it?’ he offered gently.
‘Not really,’ I mumbled, ‘and definitely not with you.’
‘Come on, budge up, I’m a good listener.’ He stood up looking at me expectantly. I was looking at him wide eyed and mouth hanging open in shock. Never an overly good look.
‘Not when it comes to Ron you’re not,’ I said, reluctantly sliding up to the furthest end of the window ledge. It was wide enough for two people, but only just and as he sat down, I became very aware of just how close he was to me. His arm brushed by mine as he sat down and I felt a thrill shoot through me. I immediately scolded myself for it, reminding myself that it was Draco Malfoy that was sitting beside me.
‘So it is about him then,’ he asked. I had absolutely no intention of answering him. I wouldn’t even have this conversation with Harry or Ginny and they were my best friends. Having this conversation with Malfoy of all people would just be plain weird. But as I turned around to give a him ‘don’t push your luck’ glare, I found that my resolve weakened. He was so close to me and looking at me so intently and so eagerly, like he was actually genuinely interested in what I had to say that for some reason I gave in. It’s not like I had much of an escape anyway.
‘Fine, he asked me out. He told me he loved me,’ I said trying to keep my voice as casual as I could, like it was no big deal; like being told that someone loved me was an everyday occurrence. I could practically see him stiffen beside me. It was like someone had just run an electric current throughout his entire body, making him go poker straight. It was a weird reaction even for Malfoy.
‘So what did you say?’ he said stiffly, although I could see that he was trying not to let it show, but there was still a tightness in his shoulders and a definite urgency in his eyes, an urgency that I couldn’t understand.
‘I told him that I didn’t love him.’
‘You did? I thought that you and he, kind of had a thing?’ he said casually, almost like he wasn’t interested.
‘We did, for a while, but then, well nothing.’
‘But then what?’ he urged. Every time I tried to evade his questions, to look away, he would continue to look at me deeply so that I was drawn back to him and I found myself answering all of his questions. It was like he had slipped me veritaserum. I was spilling secrets that I would never have said to anyone else. I had come this far though and I wasn’t going to stop. It felt good to get it all out.
‘Well, then he ignored me all summer, went out with Lavender and basically told me that he might like me and only went out with Lavender to prove to himself that he didn’t need me,’ I said spilling it all out, before I could have the time to regret saying it out loud.
‘Yes well, even though it was quite probably the least romantic offer of all time, I wouldn’t have said yes to him anyway. I don’t love him and I haven’t for a while. So anyway enough about me, what about you and Pansy? Are you together?’ I asked desperately trying to divert attention away from me.
‘Pansy. And me. No way,’ he snorted as if the thought was simply ridiculous. ‘That ship sailed a very long time ago. She’s still the same person that she’s always been, unfortunately. Most people have changed since the war, but she’s just the same spoiled little girl that she’s always been.’
‘Yeah I guess,’ I agreed.
Draco was right, she hadn’t changed. Most of the Slytherins hadn’t. Not of all them had come back to Hogwarts and the ones who had, had most likely returned because they had to. They had to look like they had changed, but on the inside they still had the same pureblood ideals. However much they tried to hide it, there was still that divide between them and everyone else. Draco however did seem to have genuinely changed. He would never have even spoken to me before in a normal conversation, never mind openly seeking me out for one and willingly sitting beside me. Ron and Harry still doubted him though and that thought niggled away in the back of my mind. Was he genuine or was I being a fool in believing him.
‘What are you thinking?’ Draco asked, after I had lapsed into a silence. I looked at him, deciding whether or not to answer him truthfully. I didn’t want to doubt him, strangely I didn’t want to hurt him, but I did want an answer. I had to know. As Harry had said, I was curious and if I didn’t ask, I would sit wondering about it until I got a definite answer.
‘Draco why have you changed?’
His head shot back away from me and his eyes flashed with an emotion that I couldn’t determine. Was it anger, annoyance, disappointment, regret even?
‘Never mind, you don’t have to tell me,’ I added quickly. It was a rather personal question after all.
‘No, it’s fine. I think I want to. I want you to understand.’ His eyes had softened and I let out the breath that I had been holding. He stayed silent and for a moment I wondered if he was actually going to tell me, was he making up a story to tell me or editing the truth into something that sounded better. Eventually he took a deep breath as if to prepare himself and then continued, ‘I guess in the end I just realised that we’re all the same. Purebloods or muggleborns; what’s the difference?
I nodded back him, trying not to let my disappointment show. I had thought he was actually going to tell me the truth, not some spun out line that he felt he had to say. That’s why I was surprised when he continued.
‘Do you remember Professor Burbage?’
I nodded in reply, slightly confused as to how why he would bring her up now. She had taught me in third year; when I had felt the insane need to take every single subject that Hogwarts had to offer. I hadn’t seen much of her since then, after dropping the subject, but I knew that she had been one of the many to disappear during the war without a trace. I didn’t even know that Draco had even been aware of who she was.
‘Well, he killed her, right of front of me.’ I took in a shocked gasp, that I knew he must have heard, as he glanced quickly in my direction before he subtly shifted as far away from me as he could, pressing himself further into the stone wall. He continued to look at his hands as he continued, ‘By then I already knew I was on the wrong side. I mean I couldn’t kill Dumbledore and what they did, bringing Greyback into the school where he could have attacked anyone and seeing Bella just going crazy, destroying everything, destroying the great hall, I already knew that I was in over my head. That I wasn’t one of them. That I couldn’t be one of them.’
I couldn’t take my eyes off of him, watching every emotion on his face. I watched so carefully to see if there was any hint of falseness in his story, but all I could hear was the truth. I would have been satisfied with that answer, but there seemed to be more as he continued to wring his hands together and I listened patiently for him to continue.
‘Anyway it was during the summer and all of the death eaters were staying at our house. Our punishment for failing him. Anyway he called a meeting and… he tortured Professor Burbage and then he had her suspended over the table. We all had to sit around and just watch her hanging there like she was some sort of amusement, some sort of plaything. She was as close to me as you are now. She couldn’t move. Her hands were tied behind her back and it was like she was screaming in pain, but no sound came out. I’ll never forget the look she had in her eyes. She was begging for help, but what could we do. What could anyone do?’
He closed his eyes briefly, as a deadened look appeared in them and then pulled his hand through his hair again. My eyes were brimming with tears, horrified at what I was hearing. I wanted to reach out and comfort him, but I couldn’t move. I felt sick. I didn’t want to hear anymore. I didn’t want to know what happened next. I could imagine it well enough, but I couldn’t stop him. I could only sit and listen.
‘She was begging Snape to help her, pleading with him, but he couldn’t do anything. He just had to sit there and watch. Then he killed her, just like that and she fell down onto the table, right in front of me. He said all this crap about dangerous she was and how she threatened our very existence, yet all I could see was an innocent woman, completely harmless. She was a teacher. She just wanted to help people and he killed her like she was nothing. Then he called Nagini and made us all sit there, as…’ he trailed off unable to say the words, looking very much like he was going to throw up.
I gripped the edge of the window ledge tightly, closing my eyes in a futile attempt at blocking out his words, practically begging him not to continue. I could imagine very well what that monstrous snake had done. If Malfoy was sickened by it, then I was pretty sure that it was an image that I did not need in my head. I had had my own personal encounter with that snake and I did not need any reminders. As my eyes blinked close, the tears I had been trying to keep at bay fell down my cheeks. I may not have known Professor Burbage well, but I wasn’t crying just for her, I was crying for of all the innocent people who would have died just as needlessly and cruelly as she had; I was also crying for the broken boy beside me who seemed unable to forgive himself for something that he had no control over.
‘That’s the moment I changed,’ he said finally looking up at me, not even looking surprised at my tears, perhaps not even registering them, ‘That’s the moment that I realised that I wanted nothing more to do with the lot of them. That I couldn’t do what they asked me to do. That I couldn’t hurt and kill muggles just because he told me to. Seeing the look on her eyes, I never want to see that look again. I never want anyone to look that way because of me.’
He looked at me, straight into my eyes and as I looked at him, it was if an unspoken message was being passed between us. I was trying, despite my tears to let him know that it was okay, that I didn’t blame him and that I knew he had changed. A strange expression appeared on his face as he looked into my eyes and he broke away suddenly, taking a deep breath and sitting up straighter, recovering himself. I mirrored his actions, leaning further away from him and taking the opportunity to wipe the tears from my face.
‘I thought about you nearly every day that year,’ he whispered, turning to look at me once more. ‘You, Potter and unfortunately Weasley. I kept thinking about what you were doing and what you were up to and just hoping that you had found something to destroy him. Then you turned up the manor. It was one of the scariest moments that I’ve ever had. I was so sure that you were all going to die and there was nothing that I could do to stop it.’
‘But you did stop it. You could have said the moment that we walked in who we were. You knew it was us. You knew that it was Ron and I and so you knew that it was Harry who was right in front of you and yet you said nothing. You wouldn’t even look at us. If you had told them then we would have died. We owe you everything.’
‘Don’t try to make me the hero,’ he cried, half in anger and half in anguish, before turning away from me and hiding his face once more. I sat and stared at him stunned. He really couldn’t see that what he had done was good; he really couldn’t see that about himself and the thought depressed me.
‘What you did was brave.’ I watched as his jaw tightened and even though I couldn’t see his facial expression, I could tell that my words were upsetting him. I just wanted him to realise what he had done, I wanted to see his face, I wanted him to turn around and look at me. Slowly I reached out and gently touched one of his hands, brushing my fingers over his the back of his hand. He immediately tensed and whipped his head around in shock when he felt my touch, but he stayed firmly in place, his hand underneath mine. His gaze lingered on our hands for a moment, swallowing hard before looking back up at me, with a wary look in his eyes. ‘You saved me that night. I owe you my life. And so do Harry and Ron.’
He looked hard into my eyes, his face devoid of all emotion as he processed my words. For another long moment he said nothing, sitting as still as a statue before a wry smile appeared on his lips, causing me to let out a breath of relief. ‘I bet Weasley and Potter don’t see it that way, but I have to say I like the idea of Weasley owing me.’
‘Well regardless, he does, but you’re right I wouldn’t go saying that to him just yet,’ I said smiling at the thought of Draco telling Ron that he owed him. It would not be pretty.
‘It doesn’t matter anyway, you saved me in the room of the requirement and again later that night, so actually I’m still in your debt,’ he said, a trace of amusement in his eyes.
‘Hmm, interesting,’ I said, pretending to mull over this new information. I was so glad that he was back to being in a good mood. His mood swings were pretty hard to keep up with; he would go from being sweet, to aloof, to so completely and utterly despondent. Part of me could understand. My own emotions had been so up and down lately too.
‘And how do you plan to repay me?’ I said turning around to face him, planning on teasing him some more, only to find that he had leaned forward; his face much closer to me than I had realised. I was so close that I could see every fleck of green and blue in his grey eyes. I was so close that our noses were only a few centimetres apart. He was so close that I could feel his warm breath on my face.
‘I’m sure I’ll find a way,’ he said in a soft voice, his eyes were gentle, yet intense tracing over each and every feature of my face once more. I felt like I couldn’t move as I watched him. I felt like I couldn’t breathe, like every breath was a lifeline, keeping me alive. I was sure I was breathing so loudly that he must be able to hear it. He must know how much his proximity was affecting me. How my blood was racing; how my heart was pounding in my chest; how my stomach was twisted with knots; how my brain was completely hazed, filled with only one thought, that I wanted him to kiss me.
As if he could read my thoughts, he leaned in slightly, so that his forehead rested against mine, before his gaze flicked back to mine, as if assessing my reaction, checking that I wasn’t going to run away. Then ever so slowly, he tilted his head to the side and continued his decent towards my lips. That moment felt like an eternity and my breathing hitched as his lips brushed lightly over mine.
In that moment, it seemed like the world had stopped. I couldn’t breathe. I closed my eyes for the briefest second, losing myself completely in his touch. All I could think of was how much I wanted this. How much I wanted him. It was a feeling that I had never felt before and the intensity of it overwhelmed me. No sooner had I allowed myself to respond, parting my lips only a fraction, when he pulled quickly away from me and my eyes flashed open in surprise
‘I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have done that,’ he said, turning away from and before I could even comprehend what was happening, standing up and moving across the room, as far away from me as he possibly could.
I couldn’t think. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t think of anything to say back to him. I was still trying to catch my breath. Draco Malfoy had just kissed me and I had actually wanted him to. Everything just seemed so confusing. It was like the world was spinning around me and yet the only thought that I could cling onto was Draco’s lips on mine.
‘Please don’t hate me,’ Draco said turning around to face me, a look of desperation on his face. ‘I shouldn’t have done that. I’m sorry, I’m just as bad as McLaggen, doing that to you when you were upset. I’m so sorry, I swear it won’t happen again. Please just forget that it happened,’ he said, turning around to look at me, almost hopeful, almost pleading.
‘But what if I can’t?’ I whispered back, clinging onto the seat for support. ‘What if I don’t want to?’
AN- I hope you all like the new chapter and once again thanks to everyone who took the time to review. I can't believe that I have over 100 reviews. Seriously means so much. I never thought I would get that many reviews, so please let me know what you think of this chapter and thanks again for reading