Chapter 2 : Sorting It Out
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In His Eyes
Chapter 2 Sorting It Out
Hermione loved anticipating the arrival of the first years on the steps of the castle. She always reminisced the time when she herself stood before Minerva McGonagall, scared to death and excited beyond measure, waiting to begin her schooling as a witch…
Ah… here comes Hagrid now.
“Professor Granger”. Hagrid nodded fondly to Hermione, blocking her view of half the assembly before her.
“Yes, thank you Hagrid”. With her crisp, down-to-business manner, Hermione was well suited to fill the shoes of the former transfiguration teacher. “Attention please, I am Professor Granger Transfiguration teacher and Head of Gryffindor House. You will follow me into the Great Hall where you will be sorted into your Houses. No talking and look sharp!”
Upon enter the Great Hall; Hermione could feel the energy coming from these small first years, a mix of excitement, fear and awe. She smiled to herself as she led them; the older students waiting beneath the enchanted ceiling staring and silent. Hermione looked up to see Minerva McGonagall seated with her staff including Luna Lovegood-Longbottom, Neville Longbottom, Cho Chang and of course Hagrid, still gatekeeper and teacher of Care of Magical Creatures.
After placing a stool firmly in front of the Head table, Hermione unrolled her parchment roster, called the first name and the sorting commenced. Afterward, as she took her seat to the right of the Headmistress, Hermione noticed an empty seat to her right and one to the left of Minerva. She deduced that McGonagall was waiting to introduce the new teachers prior to them taking their seats.
“Thank you, Professor Granger. A warm welcome to all our new students, and to our returning students as well. As you all may have noticed there are two empty chairs at the Head table. Without further ado, I would like to introduce the two excellent scholars whom will fill these seats. Some of you may know 6th and 7th years will again resume taking Defense Against the Dark Arts lessons.” A shout of exuberance burst forth from the 6th and 7th years.
"Yes, yes,” continued Minerva, “It is thrilling news- and I am sure you will also be thrilled to meet your well qualified teacher." A hush fell over the Hall, the suspense palpable. “Please give a warm welcome to Professor Harry Potter!”
The Great Hall doors swung open and in walked Harry looking relaxed and confident. The hall exploded in uproarious applause; several students banged on the tables, shouts and whistles erupted here and there. Hermione smiled and clapped as she watched Harry walk to the Head table, give a wave to the students, and stand behind his chair. He looked completely at ease with the attention; after all, he was used to it by now. Several moments passed as McGonagall made to speak over the roars of the riotous crowd.
“Thank you for the exuberant reception of Professor Potter. A few words please, Professor!” Minerva commanded.
“Er- yes. I am happy to be back at Hogwarts. And happy to be teaching Defense Against The Dark Arts… again!!” His green eyes sparkled with mirth. Neville, Luna and Hermione chuckled, exchanging knowing glances. The Headmistress gave him an approving look as he took his seat to her left. She again addressed those seated at the long House tables.
“I am also pleased to have successfully found a promising young Potions master worthy of our school--
Oh-, thought Hermione, young Potions master. Her eyebrows raised.
"--an accomplished former student and very talented in the art of potion making… "
Questions swirled in Hermione’s head. A former student? Young? Talented? Who is it? She was practically on the edge of her seat.
Minerva continued, “Please welcome our new Potions Professor!”
A collective wave of heads turned toward the Great Hall doors as they burst open and in he strode. Hermione’s jaw dropped and her body froze, rooted to the spot where she sat. She could not tear her eyes from the sight in front of her. Silence filled the Great Hall as Draco Malfoy swaggered up the isle with an air of dignity and power, no expression on his face but the slightest hint of a smirk about his lips. He appeared somewhat different than she remembered; older, more mature in looks, but there was no mistaking that trademark white-blonde hair, bangs swept casually to the side, his fair skin and haughty expression. Hermione could not help notice his features were exquisite; his straight nose, slightly pointed chin, full almost pouting lips and penetrating gray-blue eyes. He was a striking sight to behold, sharply clad and striding into the midst of the Hall big as life. There was an elegance and refinement in his countenance that Hermione found compelling.
How dare he! She thought as if knocked from a trance. Hermione tore her gaze from Malfoy, her eyes flitting to McGonagall then Harry. Minerva was wearing a tight smile; Harry wore a look of unadulterated hatred and incredulity as his emerald eyes bore into the scene unfolding before him. The Headmistress began clapping and the Hall followed suit as Malfoy stood behind the seat to Hermione’s right. He looked down and met her wide eyes with his steely-gray ones, inclining his head slightly.
“Granger,” He drawled with cool politeness. His voice was deeper, smoother. Hermione, struck dumb, stared in utter disbelief.
“Professor Malfoy, would you kindly address your students.” Minerva did not inquire but rather instruct him to do so as the courteous, but rather weak applause ceased.
He nodded respectfully to the Headmistress and drawled out with a silky voice, “Good evening to you all. I am looking forward to a… challenging year.”
“Thank you Professor”… Minerva continued but Hermione heard not a word. She felt extremely uncomfortable with Draco Malfoy standing just inches from her and it took all her concentration to appear calm. She glanced sideways at him without moving her head. Her eyes rested on his long pale fingers as they clutched the chair in front of him, pulling it out to sit beside her. He wore a ring on his right hand; it looked to be a ruby. She dared not lift her eyes to his face.
“Something wrong Professor Granger?” She heard the smooth voice just above a whisper in her ear. She stiffened and sucked in her breath. With some effort she hissed, “You tell me Professor Malfoy.”
She stared straight ahead, heart pounding, mind racing, wondering to herself what the bloody hell was going on.
A/N: I know it's a little short but the chapters get longer. I hope if you're reading, you're enjoying. I'd love to know what you think. Read on!
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