Note: Draco here would be closer to those in the talented JK’s books and not so much of those in fanfiction. Flashbacks in italic and yes, Hermione is supposed to know all about Hogwarts on her first train ride to the school of witchcraft and wizardry but we’ll pretend that never happened, won’t we? ;D
It was he who cried “Mudblood.” It was he who jeered her very name. And six years later, at his very last moment, at his very last breath, it was still he who would cry “Mudblood”, for he could never be pure.
It sickened him, it did. The thick liquid oozing out slowly from his mouth, sliding down his chin to fuse with the blood-coated ground. It sickened him. The metallic tang lingering in his mouth. It was disgusting… yet morbidly delightful.
His head was throbbing with pain but the ache seemed so far away. He couldn’t properly feel his limbs. He couldn’t see past the cloud of darkness that was floating before his eyes. Oh, the painful, traumatic way a Death Eater could die.
Despite himself, his eyes fluttered shut and he slowly waited for death to consume him… for Death to take his last breath…
His tired eyes snapped open.
Someone was coming. Someone was alive.
He tried to turn his head to see, but it only earned him a stab of pain in his neck and he groaned aloud as the ache increased ten-fold. There was silence after his open confession that he was alive but the steps then scurried to his side as he opened his bloodshot eyes once more.
She had stiffened at his whispered realization and at his mangled face. He was longer as flawless as she remembered him to be.
She lifted what appeared to be a scratched wand and directed it straight toward his pale, bloodied face.
He managed to let out a sigh despite his state and closed his eyes, blocking out the gruesome graveyard around him and her entire presence. The presence that brought back so many memories…
“Well, well. The little mudblood. What are you doing here, you pathetic fool? You’re invading upon Slytherin territory. We can easily hex you, destroy you and end your miserable excuse of a life with no one ever finding your wretched body.”
She had stubbornly stuck her chin in the air that time. It angered him, her sign of defiance but he knew fully well he couldn’t touch her until he had some sort of backup. She was cleverer and braver than he but he would never admit to it.
“For your information ferret, Professor Snape called me down here. I’d much rather be somewhere else than in this murky, depressing place, thank you.” She wrinkled her nose at the dungeon and his hand flew into his pocket to clutch his wand.
Fighting to remain composed, he sneered at her boldness. “Oh please, what would Snape want from you? Don’t tell me you’re here for remedial potions. That’d be pitiable. The smartest witch in class for remedial.” He snorted and rolled his stormy eyes while she laughed a tinkling little laugh, chock full of mockery.
“Oh, yes, I’m definitely here for remedial. I mean, with my O in potions, I sure need help,” she said, voice laced with sarcasm. “Please, Malfoy. I need remedial no less than you do, as much as it nauseates me that you are of my standard in potions.”
He snarled at that, features tinged with a kind of feral madness as he pulled out his wand.
“Mudbloods are worthless, Granger! Be glad we aren’t of age, or your blood would have been permanently stained upon my shoes!”
Her tinkling laughed resumed again and she rose to meet his challenge, eyes ablaze with scorn.
“Don’t make me hurl, Malfoy,”
That was in fourth year, he remembered. He had wanted to hex her but that git of a house professor had arrived and spoiled his chances.
He never passed a chance to taunt, torment the mudblood. For so many years he believed that he was higher than her just because he was a Malfoy. It had started when he met her, a petite brunette in his compartment, looking for some toad. He had thought she was a pureblood at first, the way she stuck her nose into the air, voice spiked with pride and boast.
“Have you seen a small green toad somewhere?”
The young boy immediately snapped his gaze from the windowpane to the compartment door. There stood a small girl, a wild mane about her head with a definite snobby voice. She looked around his age and though small, the aura surrounding her was very commanding. Her hazel eyes were sharp and she seemed very sure of herself. She appeared full of wit as well.
Ignoring her question completely, he stuck out his hand. “Draco Malfoy. And from which pure house are you from?”
She wrinkled her little button nose at his alarmingly pale hand and stared boldly into his gray eyes. “I asked for the whereabouts of a mere toad. Not for introductions.”
He liked this girl already.
His hand went back to his side but he smiled charmingly at the brunette before him.
“Toads would be despicable and ugly near a pretty girl such as yourself. I suggest you forget about it. What house would you want to go into anyway? Personally, I’d go for Slytherin. After all, it is the best house one can go to.”
He had waited for the seemingly pureblood girl to agree but she only creased her forehead.
Perhaps she wasn’t as pure as he thought she was.
His interest dimmed and he regarded her with dull eyes.
“Are you a half-blood?”
“I do not know, in the slightest sense, what you are going on about.”
It was in the train carriage, on its way to his first year of Hogwarts did he realize that the proud, audacious girl whom had shook off his invitation for a friendship was nothing but a pathetic mudblood. From that point on, he’d cry “Mudblood!” when she was around or near any topic of discussion. It had continued all the way to the graduating year…
“All ‘O’s mudblood? Well, no matter how many outstandings you receive, it’ll be pretty hard to get a decent job. After all, with the Dark Lord rising, I can’t see how you’re going to be able to earn much, let alone live, with you being a worthless being,”
She rolled her hazel eyes at him. “Don’t be a prat Malfoy, and wander off somewhere where your presence is actually wanted while you’re at it.”
“But being the stubborn little witch you are,” he drawled on, ignoring her previous statement, “I suppose you could live off scraps and begs, couldn’t you?” He laughed openly at this.
Her eyes hardened and her defense bristled as she stared just as coolly into his eyes.
“Laugh all you want Malfoy, but let me tell you this, when the Final Battle arrives,” her voice dropped to a deadly whisper as she took a step forward; invading his space, shaking him with silent anger, “you will be the one groveling at the feet of the light, begging for forgiveness,” her eyes were set in a firm glare as his own anger threatened to explode, “and be prepared for you will be very sorry for ever crossing this mudblood!” She spat, hatred twisted in very word. She sent one last glare and promptly turned and stalked away while he fumed, cursing at her retreating form under his breath…
He could recall that scene. It was like some parasite that refused to go away. Her actions and proclamation that day had greatly humiliated him, despite the fact that the spiteful talk was only exchanged between the two of them; the mudblood whom he could care less about and his own pure self. He had vowed that he would never be in the ugly, mortifying scene she had predicted years ago and yet now, here he was, on a great bloodied battlefield with little remains and no victory, lying defeated and broken at the feet of the audacious girl, the proud mudblood…
A gentle prod was felt in his side and though the touch was soft and unsure, he gasped in pain, shaking awake from his reminiscence, eyes snapping open and adjusting to see the culprit.
Hermione immediately withdrew her foot at the sound of his sharp intake of air and pointed her soiled wand at him again, waiting for him to make a move.
He hadn’t taken much notice of it though. His eyes were traveling down her body, and although she was clad in a thick, dark robe stained with great patches of blood, he marveled at how much she had grown. Even though his insides screamed with disgust, he longed to touch the smooth yet grimy skin and hopefully feel, understand what being truly pure was like.
Her honey eyes were hardened, like every other time they met, but he could see the tiniest bit of concern dancing about behind her resolve. Concern for someone as corrupt as him.
“Mudblood…” It was something like a hiss, but the meaning behind it was softer. She narrowed her eyes and all traces of the concern vanished, leaving behind hatred and anger. But what did it matter? He was still going down the same path. He was still never going to know what being pure was like.
“I’m not sorry…” Perhaps she ought to know. She ought to know that her prediction was wrong. Her firm guess was wrong because he wouldn’t be groveling at the feet of the light. Of the right side. Yearning for it maybe, but definitely not giving in to it.
His vision began to blur but he could still make out her eyebrows lowering in confusion. Silence consumed them yet again as she slowly contemplated what he just uttered and finally, after a long, long time, she spoke to him again.
“You’re not sorry… for what?” Her voice was hoarse and broken. It matched the scene around them very well and he guessed it had something to do with yelling spell after hex after curse. She had fought well, he presumed. The little mudblood in his compartment looking for a toad on their very first train ride had lived through the hell and was going to make it out alive.
He smirked a little but winced at the horrible pain that resonated throughout his mangled face. She was lowering her wand, putting away her defenses just as slowly and painfully as he was losing his grasp upon his life.
But what was his life anyway?
“I’m not sorry… mudblood,”
And she realized what he was talking about, eyebrows shooting up in utmost surprise. She opened her mouth, as if to utter something but it didn’t matter.
Nothing ever did.
He closed his weary eyes again, exhausted, as his weak heart stopped pulsating altogether, the screeching of ministry cars echoing through his mind… …
Note: Please don’t kill me.
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