“Granger!” Malfoy snapped. He felt jaded in her unceasing presence and wasn’t sure how he was to deal with her.
Hermione paused, her hand still reaching for the book. Slowly, she turned around to look at him through narrowed eyes, which had a strange sparkle in them.
Malfoy rolled his eyes and glared at her, “Stop looking like you’re about to cry,”
“I am not–” she began defensively and her cheeks flushed in indignation.
“Just don’t. I detest tears,” Draco said with an emphatic shake of his head as he slammed the book he was reading on the table.
Hermione winced. A finger jabbed accusingly at him, “You…” and the words just poured out in an outburst, “You know what Malfoy? I think this was a very bad idea. There isn’t a minute where you’ve treated me like a human. All you’ve done is insulted me, looked down upon me and bad mouthed me. I am–”
“Backing off?” he asked, his voice holding a dare, “Aren’t you going to comply with our agreement?”
There was a rustle as Hermione moved from where she stood to reach for the door.
“To hell with you Granger! I am trying to help you despite the fact that the very proposition is blood curling. And what do you do? You whine.”
“I’d probably accept the fact that you are indeed willing to help…if only you wouldn’t snap at me with every passing second and call me ‘mudblood’ like it was my last name.”
The force of her words stunned Malfoy. He could feel the wave of emotions emitting from her and it threw him off balance. The tears in her eyes were all too prominent and all he could do at that moment was gape. He’d always known would hurt to be called a mudblood but Granger hadn’t ever openly rebuked him for such name calling…not until now.
“You look like you’re really gonna start crying,” he said, for the lack of any other retort.
She knocked over a couple of books while she stalked out of the library with her head held high, her gait proud and stubborn.
Draco scowled. It hadn’t exactly been a great start. He hadn’t expected it to be. But he hadn’t expected it to be a disaster either. It wasn’t that he wasn’t trying. No. It was just a tad alien…almost too difficult to treat Granger his team mate, his equal, for that was what she expected. He hadn’t been taught to be that way; he hadn’t wanted to learn such etiquette anyways.
His upbringing had convinced him of one thing. Pure bloods were the regal ones. Muggle borns though, needed to be burnt or cut into varying pieces and exhibited like a slaughtered prey. Or so he was taught. The graphical image portrayed by his father did not scare him. He hadn’t questioned the reasons behind such a theory either. It was what people called blind faith. He had believed every word his father had uttered. Not that a three year old would question the words of his role model. Such a notion had been instilled in his mind at a very tender age and it was hard to change it.
Now how was he supposed to change it all overnight? Given that the person who required him to change was the haughty know-it-all Hermione Granger.
Draco sighed shifting his position. He eyed the scrolls of writing which seemed to mock him. Pushing them aside in one fluid motion, he stood to stretch. The muscles of his body met their blissful freedom. A satisfied moan escaped his mouth before he inched out of the library.
He had to try, hadn’t he?
Her eyes stung from the unshed tears. Crying over Ron was justified. Crying because of her fears was really fine. But Malfoy…he just wasn’t worth her tears. Hermione Granger was many things, but she definitely wasn’t a whiny coward. If it was fight that Malfoy wanted, she wasn’t going to lose.
The sound of the night crawlers reached her ears and soothed her uptight nerves. As she sat on the window sill, the grounds looked innocent and breathtaking. It was hard not to remember all those happy times she’d spent in the very place on countless occasions, albeit, they had been shared with her friends. How many daring feats? The sneaking, the visits to Hagrid’s…
She sighed wistfully as her eyes closed in disgruntlement. The soft breeze washed her senses and the sounds of the night soaked her in nostalgia. A sudden image of a sneering Malfoy invaded her. She felt panicked since she knew she hadn’t planned or done anything to do away with him. It was strange to think that way and she had opted to comfortably forget about it.
It wasn’t long before the breeze turned cold and brought Goosebumps up her arms. Sighing, she was about to move away when she noticed something shift in the grounds.
A slight frown creased her forehead as she turned to observe with care. There was someone there…she could make that out. Still frowning, she observed her thundering heart and sweating palms which made her realize that it bothered her. Quickly, she thought of what she would do. Maybe if she could find out who it was, she might get some answers. Hermione nodded deciding she would have to take a risk. With her wands outstretched, she marched out to investigate.
She wondered if it was a wise decision to saunter outside when her mind incessantly screamed danger. Hermione jogged the rest of the distance to rid all the confusions of her mind.
There was an ominous air in the grounds. She slowly edged forward her eyes looking around wildly for any signs of threat. It was the minute she spotted the figure on the ground that she realized she had been crazy to have ventured here all by herself. She was sure that whoever it was hadn’t noticed her. A part of her wanted to turn around and run while the other mocked her stupidity to not take this opportunity to learn some answers. Thinking fast, she decided she’d hide and look to see the person and leave before they could notice her presence.
It was the huge oak which sheltered her petite body. She watched as a lanky form moved in her direction. Squinting, she tried to figure out if it was someone she knew. It was obvious that it wasn’t Malfoy since the physique was quite different. The little light of the moon cast an ill-omened outline to the figure. Hermione’s breath hitched as the person seemed to approach her. Swiftly, she turned around trying to make herself smaller though she had been sure of her cover. Clapping a hand over her mouth to stop the sound of her breathing, Hermione waited for the person to pass.
A few minutes elapsed but she didn’t notice anyone walk past her. Slowly, Hermione turned to peek. The place was deserted. Widening her eyes she looked around her carefully. All seemed quiet. Gathering all her courage, she moved out of where she hid and searched. It was scary to have someone walk the grounds so mysteriously but scarier to have them disappear. Disappointed, Hermione lowered her wand and turned to leave.
Before she could take a stand something attacked her skin. Hermione let out a scream as she fell onto the ground, her wand disappearing into the darkness. She edged away trying to distance herself from the attacker whose yellow eyes glinted in the night. Was it...was it a werewolf? Dread filled her veins as she looked around frantically for some help. She wanted to scream, but her throat seemed too dry.
Even as the thought of running away entered her mind, she heard a howl from the creature. Her screams deafened the howl as it struck again. Hermione tried to shield her face even as she felt its tooth sink deep into her thigh. The excruciating pain made her feel dizzy. The soil was bathed in the blood.
She needed to call someone...help.
In her search for someone, she found another pair of eyes and felt her clothes rip. The other monster was now dragging her. Her head hit the ground as she began to lose her consciousness.
Her last lucid thought was that Draco Malfoy had been right about her fate.
Author's Note: Um...I wasn't very happy with this chapter as i wanted it to be more horrific. >_< I think I could've done better. But I hope it didn't suck :D oh my, I cannot thank my reviewers enough for all their awesome comments and criticisms! Thank you SO much guys!! This chapter is dedicated to all of you wonderful people :)
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