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Barbed Wire and Roses by Queen Witch913
Chapter 15 : Forever And For Always?
 
Rating: MatureChapter Reviews: 26


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A/N: Heyyy guys. I know. The dreaded last chapter of Barbed Wire and Roses. *cries* Not really, but it has a nice affect. So I wanna thank all of you thank stuck with this story and helped me with it. And big thanks to overdose x3 for the rockin' banner. And anything else I could have (and prolly did) miss.

I do not own anything, save the plot, Janessa, Riley, Chase, Serenity, Cordelia, and Mr. Lloyd Creed. The song ain't mine neither. So without any farther adue, The final chapter of Barbed Wire and Roses


Barbed Wire and Roses
Chapter 15: Forever And For Always

'Cause I'm keeping you forever and for always
We will be together all of our days
Wanna wake up every morning to your sweet face--always
~ ~Forever And For Always
             Shania Twain 


Hermione sighed deeply and leaned on Draco as they left the Transfiguration classroom. They had just finished the big exam and wouldn't find out their grades until the morning of graduation. Hermione was worried about how she did and everyone knew it. But everyone, other than Hermione, also knew about what Draco had planned for the day before graduation, which happened to be the next day.

"Take it easy, Mione," Blaise said looking knowingly at Draco. "I'm sure you did fine."

"Nahjjjjc (A/N: that's supposed to be a weird sound I use a lot. My dear circus monkey knows what I mean. ;-P)," she groaned.

Draco smirked over her head at Blaise. She was in for one hell of a surprise!

~ ~ ~

"Draco! I really don't like this blindfolding me business that you find oh-so-funny!" Hermione complained as Draco led her somewhere.

"Why?"

"Because I... can't see where I'm walking."

"Okay. I can fix that," he said before picking her up and carrying her the rest of the way. He only sat her down once they had entered the Room of Requirement. He removed the blindfold and Hermione gasped. The room was elegantly set. A table for two, with candles and roses everywhere. Soft music was playing in the background. "What do you think?" Draco whispered in a husky voice.

"You didn't have to do this, ya know," she replied before kissing him deeply. They didn't break the kiss. It was actually what Hermione needed. All of the passion, lust, and desire they had in them was put into the kiss. Hermione wrapped her legs around Draco's waist and he walked backwards until he felt the backs of his legs hit a bed that had just appeared. He turned, lying Hermione on it, but never once breaking the kiss. He unbuttoned her shirt skillfully then unlatched her bra, throwing them off to the side. Hermione moaned as he began to groped her breasts. He smirked down at her then moved his mouth down her.

Planning to tease her, Draco slowly reached for the button of her jeans. After about three minutes, Hermione caught on to the fact that he was, in fact, teasing. So, to save herself for anymore torment, she discarded them along with her panties. Inevitably, the same pair that had been in Draco's room that fateful day when he had gotten out of the hospital wing.

"Hey, I remember those," he said with a grin.

"Of course you do, but right now is not the time to get off task, darling." Hermione fumbled with his belt. He helped her by doing it himself. His boxers were the only other thing that stood in the way now. Hermione and Draco's eyes locked. "Draco, I swear to Merlin, if-"

Draco cut her off with his mouth, pulling his boxers off in the process. He then entered her. A moan escaped Hermione's lips. They moved against each other and before very long, a pleasing sensation washed over them.

~ ~ ~ After

"I love you, Hermione," Draco said gently.

"Love you, too," she whispered her reply. "I'm gonna miss that."

"What are you talking about? Now that I have you, I'm never letting you go. Your mine now. Always and forever and even after forever ends." Hermione made no reply. "Why would you miss this? What's that suppose to mean, babe?" Hermione start to silently cry. Draco, of course, noticed. "Is it really that bad?"

"I believe you asked me that once before, and it really was bad."

"Hermione what could be bad enough that you think we're not gonna be together?"

"That's the thing, isn't it? To a normal person, it would seem as if it were a good thing, because technically, it is. But to me, it's the worst thing that could have ever happened."

"Can yo please tell me what we're talking about here?" Draco was starting to get annoyed. What could possibly make her think that they weren't going to stay together? Unless she has some deadly disease that she never told him about. Maybe she did. Maybe she was saying this because she knew she only had a short time to live.

Draco turned her over to look at him. Her face was red and her cheeks were tearstreaked. "Hermione, what's wrong? Tell me, please." She continued to cry. "Are you sick? Is something wrong? Please just tell me."

"No, I'm not sick. I...I got a scholarship to a college that I've dreamed of going to since I found out I was a witch."

"What? That's it?" Hermione nodded. "That's great! I'm happy for you. I really am."

"Draco, it's a bad thing."

"How is it a bad thing? You're going to your dream college. There's nothing bad about it."

"But, Draco, if I go, we won't be together. You already said that you weren't going to college. No matter what."

"So, I'll find an apartment close to it and we'll live together there. Simple."

"But it's not. Let me ask you, did you ever plan on leaving England for the United States?"

"No. Why?"

"Because that's where the college is, Draco. That's why it's a bad thing. I mean, yes, it is the best college in the wizarding world, but it's still a bad thing."

"Well, you'll be able to apparate. We can live here and then you can apparate to school."

"That defeats most of the purpose of going to college."

"Well... if you're so set on going, then have a wonderful time. I'm not going to try and stop you," Draco said in a monotone.

"You think that I'm going to find someone else while I'm over there, don't you?" Hermione yelled.

"Well, you never know!" Draco yelled back. "I'm sure that that situation has happened before! And you can't blame me for worrying!"

"Yes, actually, Draco, I can," Hermione said in a quieter voice.

"How? It's a common worry when something like this happens."

"Yeah, for a couple that doesn't fully trust each other!" Draco stared at her in disbelief.

"You think that I don't trust you."

"Well, you must not if you think that I would try and find someone over there when I'm head over heels in love with you!" she shouted, tears falling once more. Hermione was now gathering her clothes. "I cannot believe that you would think something like that."

"Hermione... I'm sorry, but-"

"No," she interrupted. "I'm done fighting with you. I'm just... I'm done." With that she walked out. She silently made her way to the Head's dorms. On her way, she passed Parvati and Lavender.

"Oh, what's wrong, Hermione?" Parvati asked, trying to hide her mocking tone.

"Did Draco finally realize that he could do a lot better than you?" Lavender laughed. "And to think, you actually believe he loved you. He probably just used you for a good shag." The pair started laughing. Hermione smirked, a bad habit she had picked up from Draco.

"That's where you're wrong. You see, that's what guys do with whores like you. For all you know, I could be coming back from Dumbledore's office with news that the Grangers died because their house burned down and I lost everything I had in there."

"Oh my," Parvati gasped. Lavender's face paled.

"None of that happened, but you wouldn't have known that."

"You little bitch!" Lavender screamed as she came at Hermione. Knowing that Lavender was going to slap her, Hermione drew back and punched her right in the face. Her nose made a sickening crunch as Hermione's fist collided with it. Lavender screamed in pain. "You'll regret that, you little whore!" Parvati was trying to pull Lavender away, so Hermione start back towards her, only to be caught around the waist. She turned to see Blaise, Chase, Harry, Cordelia, and Riley.

"Let go of me! Both of you," she hissed at Chase and Blaise. Riley and Cordelia started laughing at Lavender.

"You two wanna do that to my face," Lavender sneered.

"Sure," Cordelia laughed. "It was about damn time someone took you down a notch. And I think Hermione did a lovely job."

"Blaise let me go. I'm not finished with her yet."

"Yes, you are!" Parvati yelled. "We'll just see what Professor Dumbledore thinks about the Head Girl punching someone in the face."

"You'll have to prove it," Hermione said. "And who do you think he'll believe? The Head Girl or the two biggest whores in the school who get into cat fights all the time?" Riley started to drag Hermione to the Head's dorms with help from Cordelia. When Lavender and Parvati couldn't hear them anymore, Harry spoke.

"I didn't think you would try and knock anyone's lights out now that you're Head Girl. But nice punch anyway."

"Thanks," she said as they reached the common room. Everyone except for Blaise and Hermione left. Blaise spoke the password and they entered.

"What happened?" he asked as he closed the portrait hole.

"Draco and I had a fight and on my way here, I ran into them. They asked if I finally figured out that Draco was just using me for a good shag and that he never really loved me."

"Hermione, Draco-"

"I know Blaise," she said with a smile. "That's why Lavender has a broken nose right now. It pissed me off and I told her what I thought, among other things that made her mad. So when she tried to slap me, I punched her in the face and then you and Chase had you ruin everything by holding me back."

"Wait, wait, wait," Blaise said throwing his hands up. "We were saving you-"

"How were you saving me? They couldn't beat up a damn cardboard box let alone me!"

"We were saving you from murdering her and ending up in prison."

"Oh," Hermione said. "Well, you didn't get there quick enough because she still has a broken nose."

"Who has a broken nose?" Draco asked from the portrait hole.

"The first person who happened to mention you to me," she replied before going up to her dorm.

"She really is pissed at me, isn't she?"

"A little," Blasie replied as Draco sat down. "But not as much as you think. You didn't hear the whole story. Lavender made the remark that you were just using Hermione for a good shag and you didn't really love her-"

"That's not true!" Draco exclaimed.

"I know that, and you know that, and Hermione knows that. So, anyhow, Hermione told them what she thought and a couple other things to pissed them off. Then Lavender tried to slap her, but Hermione beat her to it by punching her in the face, therefore breaking her nose."

"Oh," Draco mumbled.

~ ~ ~ Day of the graduation

Hermione, Riley, Ginny, and Cordelia were all running around the Head's private bathroom to get the two seventh years ready for the graduation ceremony. They took care you Cordelia first. Her normally straight brown hair was curled with a little gel in it to insure that it would stay curled. They used natural shades of eyeshadow to bring out her brown eyes. As her skin was not pale, dark red lipstick looked really good on her. An elegant, but simple, black dress was perfect for her. Then strappy black heels to finish it off.

"What exactly are you guys gonna do to me?" Hermione asked hesitately.

"Well," Cordelia said. "I'm going to work on your dress from the ball to change it into something completely different, Ginny's gonna do your make-up, and Riley shall be doing your hair."

"Maybe we should go with, like, a punk rocker girl look. What do you think?" Ginny asked with an excited look. Riley and Cordelia exchanged looks.

"Hell yeah!" Hermione shouted. They all chorus different chants in the same manner. Before very long, someone was knocking on the door.

"What the hell are the four of you doing in there?!" Blaise.

"Sorry, pet, but that's for us to know and you to not find out," Riley laughed.

"Hey, I want in on this then," he exclaimed opening the door. They just looked at him and laughed. He left while muttering about crazy girls invading the bathroom.

~ ~ ~ An hour later

"Okay, Corde! We're finished with hair and make-up! Dress time! Now!!" Ginny called through the door that led to Hermione's room. Cordelia opened the door and poked her head in.

"Ready?"

"Yes!"

"Okay, okay! No need to get pushy!" She brought the dress out from behind her back. It was now a metalic black instead of the multiple shades of blue. A corsette top, with spagetti straps, and an uneven skirt. Cordelia held out a pair of long, black arm socks and a pair of solid, black footless leggings. Ginny gasped.

"What?" Hermone asked.

"I have the perfect shoes to go with that!" With that, she rushed out to get the shoes.

"Well," Riley sighed, "let's get this on you."

~ ~

By the time Ginny got back, Hermione was dressed. They had decided to lose the leggings. Hermione looked absolutely beautiful. Her hair had temporary black and dark purple streaks in it and was straightened. Her make-up was done dark. Black eyeshadow and eyeliner, pale blush, and red lipstick. The other three stood back and stared at her. She blushed.

"If it looks that bad, we can still change it quickly."

"No!" the three yelled in unison.

"Mya," Riley said, leading her to the full length mirror in her room, "look at yourself." Hermione looked in the mirror. She couldn't believe they had done it. She had a punk rocker girl look for their graduation and it looked good.

"Thank you guys. I didn't think it would look right on me, but you pulled it off."

"Only with your natural beauty," Ginny said as the other two nodded in agreement. "Well, you two better get your robes and caps and get down there."

~ ~ ~

Hermione was happy that she would end up sitting next to Cordelia. The were alphabetical order, Granger, Grant. Worked out nicely for them. Hermione was nervous as they all stood in the Great Hall, waiting for McGonagal to lead them out onto the grounds where the ceremony was to be held.

"Hermione!" Janessa exclaimed as she saw her daughter. Hermione turned and smiled at her parents.

"It's amazing you can still find me in a crowd," Hermione smirked.

"Yes, well, I figured that at least one of you two would stand out in the crowd. And I saw Corde," Janessa explained smiling at Cordelia. Hermione looked at her father.

"Not what you expected, is it?" she asked referring to her look.

"Since when are you anything anyone expected?"

"Just wait til you see what I did to the dress," Cordelia said.

"Well, let's see then," Snape sighed. Hermione slipped off her robes to reveal the dress. Janessa smirked at Snape's look. "I knew that I could have waited."

"Oh, stop being like that! I am of age, ya know," Hermione said.

"Yes, but you are still my daughter, ya know," he said in a low voice, while still mimicking Hermione.

"Okay, well, we should go. You should all be heading out soon," Janessa said as Hermione put her robe back. She and Snape headed out of the Great Hall as Pansy and Ron made their way over, hand in hand.

"What?" Hermione asked sharply. "I don't believe anyone over here wants to talk to you. So run along and be little bitches somewhere else."

"Oh, that hurt, Granger. It really did," Pansy said in mock sadness.

"Not as much as your face is about to," Cordelia shot back.

"You gonna hit me?" Pansy asked.

"Yeah, as a matter of fact."

"You aren't going to touch her unless you want to end up in the hospital wing," Ron sneered.

~ ~ ~ With the boys

Chase was looking at Hermione and Cordelia. They were talking to a woman and Professor Snape. Hermione slipped off her robe to reveal her dress to them. Snape got a really weird look on his face. Chase read his lips. 'Yes, but you are still my daughter, ya know.' Chase couldn't believe it.

"Hey, Blaise?"

"Yeah," Blaise replied turning to Chase.

"Is Snape Hermione's dad?" he asked so only Blaise could hear.

"How did you know that?"

"They were talking to her and I kinda read his lips. And it's a little weird for a professor to be looking at a student like a pissed off parent upon seeing their outfit."

"What's her outfit look like?"

"You'll see." Chase turned back to the direction Hermione and Cordelia were in. Pansy and Ron were standing there. He looked at Blaise, who had also saw this. "Hey, we'll be right back." Harry and Draco nodded. They made their way over to the girls.

"You aren't going to touch her unless you want to end up in the hospital wing," Ron sneered.

"And you're not going to Corde here unless you wanna deal with us," Chase said. Blaise cracked his knuckles for good measure. Ron's eyes now showed a glimmer of fear (A/N: I dunno if glimmer is a word, but if not... then it is now ;-P).

"Yeah, so back the fuck off. 'Cause I would just hate to have to let Hermione make both of you look like Lavender," Blaise said. Hermione smirked at their reactions. Without another word, they walked away. "So, Hermione my dear, what exactly does your outfit look like?"

"Wouldn't you like to know?"

"Yes, actually I would. So, why don't you show me? Ya know, since I didn't get a show out of the four of you earlier."

"What kind of show were you looking for Blaise?" Chase asked.

"Well, what kind of show would you be looking for if you heard them yelling things like 'hell yeah' and 'damn right, bitch' and shit like that, while being locked in a room together?"

"We weren't locked in the room!" Hermione and Cordelia yelled, earning curious glances from everyone around them.

"Well, even so, I know what Blaise means," Chase said.

"Get your minds outta the gutter for once, huh?" Hermione said, playfully pushing Blaise.

"We'll think about it," he said as they walked back to Harry and Draco.

"What was that all about?" Draco asked.

"Weasley and Parkinson were starting shit," Chase replied. Draco said nothing to this. Hermione was still upset. And he knew it. Harry simply looked at him with a knowing expression.

"Everything will turn out for the better, you know," Harry said to Draco, who smirked.

"How could it turn out for the better?"

"Well, if she does go, you two will be apart, but when she comes back, you two will probably get back together and be stronger than ever and you'll be able to rub it in everyone's, meaning Ron and Pansy's, faces." Draco thought about what Harry had just said.

"Good point," he replied. McGonagal demanded everyone's attention.

"We have just posted the results from the exam you all took in my class. I am very pleased to say that the majority of you did a phenomenal job. Now, if you would like to see your results, please make your way right over there," she said pointing towards the right wall in the Great Hall.

Hermione and Cordelia went over to the papers holding the results. They looked down over them, finding everyone's name and score.

Bronson, Chase 98/100
~ ~
Granger, Hermione 100/100
Grant, Cordelia 99/100
~ ~
Malfoy, Draco 97/100
~ ~
Parkinson, Pansy 43/100
Potter, Harry 98/100
~ ~
Weasley, Ron 45/100
~ ~
Zabini, Blaise 97/100 


Hermione couldn't believe it. A 43 and a 45! She truely didn't think anyone could reach that level of stupidity. But, Ron and Pansy had proved her wrong. Cordelia looked at her and they both started laughing. As they walked away, they passed Ron and Pansy, which made them laugh even harder. They walked over to the boys. Harry looked puzzled at their laughter.

"Ron... Ron got... a.. 45... and Pansy... got... a 43," Hermine explained as she tried to calm her laughter.

"What about all of us?" Draco asked.

"You and Blaise got a 97. Harry and Chase got a 98," Cordelia said. They all turned when they heard a shrill cry come from the direction Hermione and Cordelia appeared from. Pansy found out what her score was.

"What about the two of you?" Draco asked hesitantly.

"I got a 99 and Mya here got a perfect score. Surprise, surprise," Cordelia said, her voice dripping with sarcasm.

"Hey, I thought it was going to be harder than that. And who in the right mind gives an exam right before graduation?"

"McGonagal," they all answered.

~ ~ ~

"I would like to welcome you all! Today is a glorious day for the students sitting here today that a survivors of seven years at Hogwarts. To the younger students, this should be a joyous day, also. To know that, it is possible to make it through Hogwarts in one piece. To know that you are now one step closer to being the ones that will be leaving this place behind, one step closer to the rest of your lives, and one step closer to the real world. To the parents, guardians, caretakers, of these students that will soon be stepping into the real world, it should also be a wonderful day. For you to know that your child is about to become an adult, to be on their own and out of your hair," all the parents laughed at that, "should overwhelm you with joy. For, if it weren't for you and the support you have given them, heaven only knows how many of them actually would have made it this far.

"I, for one, am proud to admit that I am Headmaster of a school that so many great people have come out of. I am proud of every single one of you," Dumbledore's gaze rested on Hermione then Draco upon saying this, "for what you have achived and overcome this past year. You should all be proud to know that, for once in a very long time, scholarships were handed out to a select few of you. This hasn't happened in many, many years. So take joy in knowing that tiny bit of information. Now, I believe it is only fair to allow the Head Boy and Girl make their speeches, which they worked so long and hard on. Ladies and gentlemen, the Head Boy and Girl, Mister Draco Malfoy and Miss. Hermione Snape!" there were a few gasps as this was said. Hermione was froze on the spot.

"Mya, get your ass up on that stage and make that speech, or I will drag you up there myself," Cordelia whispered. Draco and Hermione both stood and took the stage. Everyone was whispering, and Hermione knew it was about her. Draco looked at her.

"It's fine," he whispered. "Let them talk." Then he stepped up to the microphone. "Welcome to the seventh year graduation. As one of the many that is graduating today, I know that this year has been anything but easy," multiple seventh years yelled something in agreement while most just nodded. "I also believe it to be one of the most eventful years yet." Draco paused. He knew that that was the only part of the speech that would really mean anything to his follow classmates. "This speech really didn't mean much to me while I was preparing it. Then, it was just something else we would all have to wait through, so I didn't put much thought into it. The person who did, was Hermione. So, I don't see any sense in wasting time with a lame speech I made up last minute, while she has a well thought out speech already prepared. So, your Head Girl, Miss Hermione Snape." Draco stepped aside so she could take his place at the microphone. Hermione knew her speech by heart, so she just let her arms hang at her sides. She hadn't been nervous about this speech until now. Everyone was looking at her. Some smiling, some still whispering, while others glared up at her. She took a deep breath. I can't do this, she thought. As if reading her mind Draco reached over, took her hand in his, and gave it a gentle squeeze to show everything was fine.

"Hello, everyone. As Draco said, this year was anything but easy. For some, it may have been, others may have struggled. For those of you that may have struggled, you should be happy right now. It's over and here you are. You made it through everything that was thrown at you." Hermione paused looking at all her classmates sitting before her. "When I first came to Hogwarts, I was so excited yet scared. Excited because it was a chance to meet new people. Scared because of the chance of being rejected by said new people. But, somehow, we all made it into our own little groups, with whom, we never had to be scared around.

"Every year, it's always the same. The first years come to this place, with mixed emotions. Then when they see it, how big it is, they get worried about getting lost. Of course, many do. Then you have the veterans, who know what it's like being here for the first time. How confused you were, and overwhelmed. But yet, something in you stops you from taking pity on the first years, simply because, unless you had an older relative in the school, no one took pity on you. But, you've all made it. And eventually, we will all be sitting in the parent's seats, wating our own children graduate and we'll think back to how relieved we were to know we had done it. We graduated. So, congradulations, guys! You've all done it!" Everyone clapped. Draco dropped Hermione's hand to clap also. Cordelia, Blaise, Harry, Chase, Molly and Aurthur Weasley, the twins, and her parents were all standing. All the lower years, that were seated off to the side, were clapping too. Riley and Ginny were also standing.

"Go Mione! Whoa!" Ginny yelled.

"You really did it, Hermione," Draco muttered in a monotone as he walked away, back to his seat. Hermione walked back to hers, where Cordelia gave her a hug. Dumledore took the stage once more and began reading off the names to go up and get their diplomas.

"Hanna Abbott," he called.

~ ~ ~

"Hermione Granger," Dumledore called. He just read off the paper, as he didn't want to have to figure out where in the S's she would fit into. In the crowd, two 'parents' were standing and chreeing.

"That's my girl," Mrs. Granger cried.

Hermione stood and walked towards the stage. She shook Dumledore's hand and took her diploma.

"They requested to come," he whispered in her ear as he hugged her. She simply nodded.

"Cordelia Grant," he continued.

~ ~

After everyone got their diplomas, Dumledore congradulated them once more before they all threw their caps in the air with a cheer. Hermione and Cordelia ran quickly so they could reclaim their caps before they met up with their friends and family. They laughed as they ran. It was over. Graduation was done and they would leave Hogwarts for the last time as students tomorrow. Never again would they take another class here, or go through a detention. Never again would they hear Dumledore's welcoming speech from a students point of view, a teachers was possible, but not a students. They joined their family and friends after they retrieved the caps. Janessa and Snape smiled at their daughter.

"Congradulations, darling," Janessa said, beaming. Snape hugged her, as she was technically no longer a student. Someone cleared their throat behind them. Hermione turned to see the Grangers.

"You did it, sweetie!" Mrs. Granger said. She stepped towards Hermione to give her a hug, but Hermione stepped away. "Now that's no way to be to your mother."

"You're right. It is no way to be to your mother, but you see... you're not my mother. And you," she turned to Mr. Granger, "are not my father. You aren't, you never were, and you never will be." Hermione turned back around to see Janessa had walked away.

"You believe that after all these years you're biolodgical parents suddenly care about you? You think they know anything? Do you even know if they are still alive? You don't have anyone else. When you leave here tomorrow, you'll have no choice but to come and live with us until you find somewhere else to live," Mr. Granger said.

"Actually, I believe that her biolodgical father knows a lot more about her than either of you do," Snape said smirking.

"Oh, really? And just who are you to say something like that?"

"Her real father," Snape said, putting his arm around Hermione's shoulder. "In fact, I'm possitive I know more about her."

"And what do you know that we don't?" Mrs. Granger challanged.

"That I'm going to be a grandfather soon." Before they could register what he had said, Hermione and Snape had walked away, leaving them dumbfounded. They found Janessa talking to Remus Lupin. "Well, the Grangers now think what I thought at the restaurant."

"You told you knew something they didn't and that something was that Hermione's pregnant, right?" Janessa asked knowingly. Snape nodded while Remus looked at Hermione in shock.

"What? You're pregnant?!" he gasped.

"No! We just said that to piss them off," Hermione replied. Remus looked relieved.

"You gave me quite a scare there for a moment, Hermione," Remus said.

"How do you think I felt?" Snape asked. "They told me that in the middle of a restaurant! Then Nessa knew she was only joking but I sure as hell didn't!"

"Well, that's what you get for assuming I was getting around," Hermione said to her father. Riley came running up to her with Serenity on her hip. She gave Hermione a hug, carefully though, as not to hurt Serenity.

"You did great with your speech," she said cheerfully. Then she gave her sister a serious look. "But I really need to talk to you."

"Okay," Hermione said slowly. Riley handed Serenity over to her mother. They walked down by the lake. "What's wrong?"

"Do you remember where Ginny and I were sitting?"

"Yeah," Hermione said. They hadn't been directly in front of her but off to the left. "Why?"

"Well, some of the parents were sitting there, too."

"Okay...?"

"Narissa Malfoy was sitting there."

"Riley, I don't see what you're getting at here."

"We all saw you," she said. "You and Draco were holding hands. And the section I was in could see that. If I could then I'm sure Draco's mother could, too."

"Was Lucius with her?"

"I didn't see him," Riley said thinking back. "No, he wasn't there."

"Okay, then it's fine. As long as Lucius wasn't there, everything will be all right. But thanks for telling me," Hermione said smiling at her little sister. They made their way back to everyone else. "Ya know, I'm gonna really miss being here."

"What am I going to do?" Riley asked.

"What d'you mean?"

"Well, next year it'll be me and Ginny. But once she graduates, who will I have?"

"Corde's younger siblings."

"I didn't know she had siblings!" Riley exclaimed.

"Yeah, a brother and sister in your year and a sister in a year behind you."

"Names, please," Riley said.

"Dred and Glory are in your year and Amerlyn is the youngest. In fact, that's Dred and Glory right there with everyone," Hermione said pointing to the group. Cordelia turned in time to see the two coming towards them. She waved to her friends and she and the twins met Hermione and Riley half way. "We were just coming over."

"Well, I wanted to talk to you alone. And I know for a fact that Riley and Glory would absolutely hit it off, so I wanted to introduce them," Cordelia said. "So, Glory, Dred, this is Riley. Riley, this is Glory and Dred."

"Nice to meet you," Glory said, holding out her hand to Riley.

"Likewise," Riley replied with a smile while shaking Glory's hand. Glory elbowed Dred and he glared at her.

"I'm sorry if I think it's a bad idea for me to be seen talking to her. The entire Slytherin house hates her," Dred said in a monotone.

"No offense, but you can't really talk," Riley said. "It's not like you're the hottest item either. No one likes you, so what does it really matter?" Dred thought for a moment.

"Good point," he replied. He still didn't shake her hand, but instead, just nodded. Cordelia rolled her eyes.

"Okay," she said impatiently. "Off with you! Hermione and I need to talk."

"Whatever," Riley and Glory both said.

"Oh, God! Kill me please! Right here, right now! I can't deal with two of them," Dred exclaimed dramatically.

"If you don't get moving, I'll save him the trouble. Now go!" The three walked away. Cordelia turned to Hermione. "Okay, spill it. College? You didn't tell us? Why?"

"I...I didn't know what to do. I was thinking about not even going... But... I don't know, Corde."

"What do you mean you don't know? This is a dream of your's, isn't it?" Hermione nodded. "So, why is it so hard to decide?"

"Because, at the same time that I'm dying to go, I know I can't live without him for the rest of my life. I don't think I could take losing him. Especially after everything we've been through."

"You love Draco and he loves you, right?"

"Yeah," Hermione muttered.

"And you've been through your fair share--and then some--of hardships, have you not?"

"More than you could ever imagen," Hermione laughed.

"Okay, then, you are going to talk to him today, and you two will work things out, then you and I will go to that college and live happily there until its over, then you'll live happily with Draco! Works out perfectly," Cordelia said cheerfully.

"Yeah, it does... in your little fantasy world. When does anything ever really work out like that?"

"Not very offten, but you never know." Someone cleared their throat. Draco.

"Could I talk to Hermione for a moment?" he asked.

"Yeah, I was done running her life for the moment anyhow," Cordelia answered before walking away.

"Hey..."

"Hey..."

"Why... why didn't you just tell me?"

"Because, Draco," Hermione said softly.

"The word 'because' is not an answer, Hermione," Draco said in an annoyed tone.

"Because I didn't even know if I was going to go."

"Why wouldn't you?!"

"Because, you're not going to go to the United States with me. And you don't trust me. A lot can happen in four years, Draco. A lot. I could come back, and you could be married with kids! I don't know what I would do if I were to lose you. I don't think I could make it," Hermione said, tears spilling from her eyes.

"You don't know that that's going to happen," he yelled.

"And you don't know that it won't," she shot back.

"But you seem to think it will. Hermione, don't go thinking the worst about everything."

"Draco, I can't help but think the worst! I don't want to lose you!" Draco said nothing to this. "I don't want to end it this way, but... I thik I'm going to continue my education."

"Are you sure? I'm not going to try and stop you if you are, but I want you to be happy."

"I'm sure. I've always dreamed of this."

"So you're walking away for the time being?" he asked, although he already knew the answer.

"Yes, I am. But not forever."

"Then I'll stand here and wait."

"When are you gonna stand down?"

"When you come back to me again."

~ ~ ~
endness!


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