I did have just the strangest dream that night. I was running through the Forbidden Forest, running and running and running with endurance that I really didn’t have. I’m not much of a runner myself, I tend to stop and smell the roses, or read a book for that matter than go through any sort of physical pain. I’m not too fond of sweating, to be honest. But in any case, suddenly the floor drops out from beneath me and I’m in the ocean, but it’s a thick, warm ocean and I am being tugged down. I tried to hold my breath but it felt like my lungs were shriveling up into little raisin-lungs. I woke up gasping and to find a tiny kitten tumbling off my face. Great, I chose the cat that thinks my face is a good place to sleep.
“Thanks darling, that was great,” I said to the rather awkward looking feline. She simply curled up on my bed again, trying to get back to sleep. I myself had had quite enough of dreams so I stood up and ran a hand through my ridiculously fuzzy mane of hair. It was a curse really, and whenever I slept on it one side always stuck up more than the other. But at the moment I wasn’t really concerned with that so I started out to the living room to plot out my Saturday. I didn’t want to think about everything that was happening, so I was taking it bit by bit.
Unfortunately lady-luck was not on my side that morning and I walked out in my beater and boxer shorts to find Draco lounged on my couch looking at some random book I had left on the coffee table. I just stood there gaping, because of course he looks absolutely spotless like always. His blonde hair had been combed to perfection, there was not a speck of anything on his shirt and pants and he had an overall look of smug perfection as he stared at me.
“Well good morning sweetheart, you got dolled up for little old me?” he asked with that little smirk of his that just makes my skin crawl. It had such a cocky, in-control look to it as it slowly spread across his features. However I was just too shocked to even be angry at the moment, and actually rather embarrassed.
“How did you get into my house,” I hissed vehemently, resisting the urge to pat my hair down. I knew he’d have a smart comment if I started fussing with myself, and so I stood my ground, letting my arms cross across my chest in a determined fashion.
“We’re in the muggle world, a simply Alohomora did the trick… It’s not as though you were going to put any sort of counter spell on the door,” he answered, nearly gleefully as he continued to stare at me. I wasn’t sure whether to smash his face in or run away (typical Fight-or-Flight scenario really). However I did neither and just continued to stare at him angrily. I really should have seen that coming.
“So, how about I give you a few moments to spruce up and we can start our first lesson,” he continued in such a nonchalant tone that it made my blood boil. Somehow he always managed to undermine me, always manage to get the upper hand every time we spoke. Not this time though, no I was surely going to have the last word, er… the last action anyway.
I stared at him spitefully for a moment before tipping my head upside down. I shook vigorously until my already frizzed and odd-shaped chestnut locks stood even more on end. I then righted myself, fluffed it a bit and smiled. “All ready,” was all I said. I really must have been quite the beauty really, because I know for a fact my hair looks absolutely atrocious in the morning. And surprisingly enough for me, Malfoy didn’t have an instant snappy remark and instead seemed to just stare thoughtfully for a moment.
“Alright then,” was all he said, and his gaze seemed to take on a new look. Instead of a challenging glance that met my eyes, it took on a cool, analytical look to it. And it certainly wasn’t meeting my eyes, instead it seemed to waver somewhere between my chest and my knees… and I found myself turning a slight shade of scarlet. “…all the better to see you with my dear,” he said, tapping his temple idly with his wand and taking on a rather sinister grin.
“I’m changing,” I said abruptly, he could win that argument as long as he no longer stared at me like that. I then went back to my room, slamming the door, with the decision that I was going to wear as long and loose of clothes as possible. However it happened to be a very warm day so a turtleneck was not in the cards. Instead I opted for a rather baggy t-shirt with the emblem of some muggle bookstore… It had been free, and my office job wasn’t exactly letting me live 1st class. I paired that with jeans and flip-flops and then went to my vanity table.
I was ½ way through putting my frizzy hair up into a loose ponytail when I remembered something. I wasn’t going through with this anymore. I was a big girl now; I didn’t have to have him bullying me around. Suddenly I recalled the coffee shop the day before, Malfoy with that little blonde imp-of-a-thing, leaning towards him with such a weak persona. For some reason that seemed to stir me up more than anything, but it did remind me that Draco was obviously plotting against me. I stormed out of my room to see him now up and sorting through the bookshelf. MY bookshelf.
“You know what? No… No no no. I don’t want to do this anymore, so just leave. I’ve thought it over, and I’ve decided I don’t want to go back. So no lessons, no magic-talk, and most of all… no more Draco Malfoy,” I said, and as I was talking that despicable boy just kept moving closer and closer. I hadn’t noticed at first, because I was so absorbed in my speech and also because he was so smooth of motion. Yet as soon as I stopped to breathe I found him right in the middle of my personal space, staring down at me with a look of shock and nearly anger. I stood steady, I would no longer play his intimidation games.
“What’s this? Oh no Granger, there’s no getting cold feet on this one, you told me you were going to come back and that’s what you’re going to do,” he said, sounding casual enough, but I could feel an undercurrent of force that I hadn’t expected. Sure sure, I thought me might be upset, but really I couldn’t help but wonder why he wanted me fighting for the good side. “What’s changed your mind Granger, it must be something… or someone?” he asked, looking me over as if I must have grown an extra arm or something.
“I just changed my mind alright… Merlin! You’re such an awful prick-” I started but then stopped abruptly with a look of surprise on my face. I hadn’t said Merlin since I left the wizarding world. I was shocked at how naturally and suddenly it had flowed from my lips. Obviously this needed to stop now, I was getting in too deep already and I wouldn’t be able to brainwash myself again.
“Just stop… Stop,” he commanded, and took me roughly by the shoulders. And for some odd reason I felt like that was the perfect time to shiver. It was the first time he had really gone so far as to touch me in a non-life-threatening manner. “Try it for a day, we’ll take it slow… and then later we can talk about why you wanted to change your mind,” he continued, and though his words were intended to be soothing his voice said otherwise. It was tight, and I could feel the grip on my shoulders tighten before he slackened and let his hands fall back to his side.
Obviously this meant a lot more to him than it did to me.
But I weighed the options… He was in my home, obviously he wasn’t going to leave until I did what he wanted. And it wouldn’t hurt anything just to pretend to go along with his plans… maybe brush up on some good locking spells. So I inhaled and exhaled slowly, nodding a bit.
“Sounds like you’re teaching me how to bloody snog,” I mumbled, staring up at him with a glance that I was later told resembled a wet cat’s. Though I sighed and nodded ever so slightly before heading towards my trunk.
“No no my darling, that’s lesson two,” he said lightly, before getting up and strolling after me.