Chapter 28 : Scuffle
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“So, overall, not the best New Years you've had?” Blaise asked as he threw himself down on Draco's bed and took another bite of his half eaten green apple, he had just finished packing for the trip back to Hogwarts(and of course he was the last to be finished). It was late enough for it to have begun to darken outside and the four of us, as in Amber, Draco, Blaise and I, sat in the bed, or well... Just two of us actually sat, seeing that the boys were both lying down. Draco on his back and Blaise on his stomach.
I gave a light laugh at that, “You could say that,”
I reached out and grabbed his apple and took a bite, before handing it back to him, it tasted good. Blaise gave me a highly amused look while Draco raised his eyebrows at me and I wondered if I had done something wrong, I tried to look innocent as I shrugged slightly and mumbled, “It looked delicious...”
Draco rolled his eyes at me, but he wasn't the only one, Amber and Blaise did the same. I just smiled at them.
“I must say,” Draco began, “I'm surprised that Violet didn't show up.”
“I'm not, after the way you throw her out, I don't think she would have dared to show up. She's a Parkinson after all, a coward from birth,” said Blaise, he had of course been told all about Violet and her visit to the Manor. Pansy wasn't much of a coward yesterday, I thought, not in the bathroom at least. But I decided not to say anything, it wasn't something I wanted to talk about at all, it was too soon to talk about it in my opinion – the memory of Draco and Pansy together was way too fresh.
Draco shrugged his agreement. “I guess,” he said before looking at me, “What did mum want yesterday, Hermione? When she came to talk to you?” His eyes were curious and a small smile played on his lips.
I was momentarily stunned when he used the word 'mum' instead of 'mother' but recovered quickly.
“Oh, you know, just tell me that Andromeda had replied her letter,” I finished off with a smile and was surprised when his smile faded, and his eyebrows furrowed.
“Mother wrote Andromeda?” He looked shocked, as if someone had just poured ice cold water over him and he sat up in the bed.
“You didn't know,” I stated with a small gasp and tried to understand why no one had told him.
“No, I didn't know,” he said sarcastically, “Well spotted.”
“I'm sorry, I just assumed that Lucius had told you – I didn't even think of telling you myself...”
Draco threw his hands up in a frustrated gesture, “Father knows?” When no one answered him he added, “Am I the only one who doesn't know?”
“Looks like it, mate,” quipped Blaise but Draco ignored him and kept his stare on me.
“Why didn't you tell me?”
“I-” I didn't know what to say and was glad when Blaise interrupted.
“It's not her fault that you weren't told, like she said she assumed that you had been told.”
Draco's steely grey eyes landed up on Blaise instead and was met by a pair of strong, dark brown ones.
“I'm not saying that it's her fault,” Draco said slowly, “I'm merely-”
“Blaming her for not telling you?”
“No,” Draco glared at Blaise, I could tell that he was thoroughly annoyed with his best friend, “Besides, it's none of your business anyway...”
Silence fell up on them for a couple of seconds when Blaise simply looked at Draco, before he spoke coldly, “After what happened last night, I'm surprised that you would have the nerve of blaming her of anything.”
They were beyond glaring at each other when Blaise fell silent, and I could feel the tension between them and I knew that Draco knew that Blaise was right but of course he would deny such thing – Him being wrong, I mean.
Amber pretended not to listen to them, while I closed my eyes as Blaise's words made images of Draco and Pansy appear in my mind. Why did he have to bring it up again? I had not only forgiven Draco for what had happened, I had also tried really hard not to think about it. Damn Blaise for bringing it up.
I tried to keep thinking that 'Draco did, after all, push her off his body'. It only helped so much. Draco looked at me for a brief second, and I think he saw how hurt I looked.
“Get out,” hissed Draco and pointed towards the door, when Blaise simply stared at him, he grabbed his arm and pushed him off the bed and followed right behind him, “Get the hell out!”
Draco kept pushing Blaise towards the door, and Blaise in his turn kept glaring at his friend.
Once at the door, I saw how Blaise hissed something to Draco, low enough so that I wouldn't hear them, but I saw how Draco stiffened and clenched his fists before he said something back.
It looked a bit funny, seeing that Draco was taller than Blaise, when Blaise tried to make himself taller and stand up towards Draco, being in his face as he spoke in a deadly tone, and I think I heard something which sounded a lot like, “If you ever hurt her again...”
I didn't hear Draco's response but after a bit of arguing, I heard Draco raise his voice.
“Do you wanna take this outside?” His tone was just as deadly as Blaise's had been, “I'd be more than glad to...”
“Come off it, Draco,” Blaise replied, and then they went back to whispering.
I stole a glance at Amber, who now looked at the two boys with wide eyes, from her look I assumed that we were thinking the same thing. If our boys fought each other, who would win?I got a worrying feeling as I glanced back at the two of them, yes, Draco was tall and toned, he had just the perfect amount of muscles – Blaise was slightly shorter, but much bigger. Blaise looked very strong, and Draco looked very fast. But when it came down to fighting, I knew it wasn't all about strength – it was about aiming right, and pray that you hit the target.
I knew that Draco was good when it came to fighting, I had seen him beat Matthew Raven to a bloody pulp, but this was Blaise we were talking about; strong, angry, little Blaise, who weren't very little when it came down to it. I didn't want either of them to get hurt, so if they were going to fight, I wished it to include wands. Then they would at least have the same strength and such.
I was about to stand up and tell them to stop, when I saw Blaise's eyes widen with understanding and he glanced over Draco's shoulder and looked at us, his eyes landing on Amber, he gave a short nod to Draco before he called her to him.
“We should let them talk about this, without us breathing down their necks,” he said as she came closer to him and I knew that those words were Draco's and not his own.
Amber hissed something at Blaise as they walked out the door, and I could see that whatever she said; He didn't like it. He glared at her back and that was all I saw before Draco shut the door behind him, and then he turned to face me, his eyes yet again begging for forgiveness, and I hated it.
“Why did you just throw Blaise out?” I asked as I gave a nod towards the door, which voices could be heard behind, though I couldn't make out the words. “It was awfully rude.”
My tone was very matter-of-factly, truth to be told – I only said it because I hoped that it would keep him from talking about his ex-girlfriend.
Draco seemed frustrated as he furrowed his eyebrows and gave me a long hard stare, which I didn't like at all. He didn't break eye contact as he spoke, in a low and seemingly calm voice.
“So, you're saying that you think that I should have let him say anything about-”
“No!” I interrupted quickly, so that he wouldn't say her name. Gods, you're childish, Hermione, I thought to myself. “Of course not, but throwing him out was a bit of an overreaction, in my opinion,” my voice sounded calm, but it still had an edge to it, an edge Draco didn't seem to like.
Draco's silver grey eyes reminded me of the stormy weather outside, glancing outside I saw that the wind blew hard, making the trees bow down and the snowflakes swirl around, Draco's eyes had the similar effect, though I refused to bow down but I couldn't stop the butterflies in my belly from swirling around.
“Then I guess we don't share the same opinion,” Draco said as he strode towards me with his hands in his pockets, still staring me down.
“Apparently not,” I agreed as I looked up at him; he had stopped right in front of me. I wanted to stand up and press my lips against his and just forget about everything, but I held myself back as another image of Draco and Pansy emerged in my head and I looked away from him. I cursed myself for being the first to look away.
“What's bothering you?” as he asked me that, his voice was softer – nicer. It made me inhale quickly and I forced myself to look back at him, his eyes were still rather hard but they also held worry.
“Nothing,” I lied and he knew I did, I had always been a bad liar. With a deep sigh, I lowered my eyes as to avoid his stare which demanded answers.
“You are a horrible liar, Hermione,” he sighed, “Look at me...”
I was as stubborn as always and refused to do as he said, so he took a hold of my chin and turned my face to look at him. He muttered something under his breath, something which sounded awfully a lot like 'stubborn little Gryffindor...'
“What did you say?”
“What? Oh, nothing important,” He said and released the hold of my chin, “Now, what's bothering you?” There was a brief pause before he continued, “Is it about what Blaise said? About Pan-”
“No!” I breathed and felt stupid instantly, I knew that I shouldn't be acting the way I was, but I couldn't help it. I had indeed forgiven him, but that didn't mean that I could talk about it, it still hurt. “I – I... Sorry, I can't. I can't talk about this right now, I don't want to talk about it yet, I-” I made a move to stand up, but Draco pushed me back down on the bed.
“Hermione,” He said my name just like I had said his, and it made me feel like a little child, “You do understand that we need to talk about this? You need to understand-”
“Draco! Stop talking about it, would you?”
“Would you keep quiet so that I can say this?” He hissed at me and I shut up instantly, Draco took a deep breath before he continued, “You need to understand how I am feeling about all this, and you need to know that you can trust me. Are you listening to me?”
He just didn't get it did he and I wanted to scream in his face; I don't want to talk about it!
But instead of doing that, I simply gritted my teeth and looked to my left to find myself staring at the wall. I could see him in the corner of my eye and I saw that he had stiffened. Apparently I wasn't reacting to his words in the way he had hoped I would.
“Hermione,” He sounded angry, “Answer me, damn it!”
I flinched at his voice, and he cursed under his breath before apologizing for raising his voice like that. He hadn't meant to scare me, he just needed to get my attention.
When he had gotten my attention(which means that I was looking at him again) then he started talking, while I just stared at him and tried to ignore his words.
“I know that we spoke briefly about it yesterday, and you said you forgave me but... Did you really? From the way you're acting today, well, can you blame me for asking? I meant what I said, I never wanted her to kiss me. I wouldn't have kissed back, no matter what. Don't doubt that, okay? Her and I are as finished as a couple can get, I would never go back to her-” He took a pause to look at me, I was simply staring at him. Tried to hide my emotions as much as I could, I didn't want to show him how extremely much it hurt to hear him talk about her, even if he was trying to reassure me that he didn't want her.
Just hearing him talk about her hurt. He opened his mouth to start speaking again, but I couldn't take it.
“Are you quite finished?” I asked harshly, but my expression didn't change.
He was taken aback by the sound of my voice and he opened his mouth several times and closed is just as many times. I stood up and walked towards the bathroom, so I could lock myself in there and let my feelings out, I didn't want to show him how much it hurt. I knew just how childish it sounded, but I really didn't want him to see me cry. However, Draco refused to let me past him. “Out of the way, Draco.”
“No,” he said flatly and I pushed against his chest, but he didn't move an inch, “Listen to me, Hermione, I didn't mean for you get hurt, she-”
“Shut up! Just shut up!” I yelled and this time he did as I asked, “I said I don't want to talk about it! Why cant you just shut up?!” Each word was followed by a punch at his chest, that was until he grabbed a hold of my wrist to keep me from hitting him. Not that it seemed to have hurt him much. His eyes had darkened and he held my wrist in a hard grip, but not hard enough to hurt me. Still, I struggled for him to let me go, but he wouldn't have it; he knew that if he let me go, then I would run off in to the bathroom.
“Just tell me that you forgive me,” he said, and his voice was strained and low. I pushed against him again, but he held his position, “Tell me that you forgive me, Hermione. I need to hear it... Please, forgive me?”
At the word 'please' I stopped struggling and dared to look up at him again, it was so rarely he asked for something like that – it was like he actually begged me to forgive him, and I couldn't stop the question to spill out of my mouth before thinking.
He gave a low, short, humourless laugh before repeating my question.
“Why?” He let go of my wrists and just looked at me, before shaking his head, “Why, indeed...” He looked incredibly hurt by my question, and then I realized that he had misunderstood me completely.
“No, no, I didn't mean it like that,” I said in a hurry and reached out to touch his arm but he flinched away, I couldn't help but to remember that he had done the same thing towards Pansy the previous day. I swallowed hard before I spoke again, “I-I just meant, why do you need me to say it again? You already know I have forg-”
“Have you?” He asked me in the middle of my sentence, “Have you really? I need to hear it again. You have no idea how guilty I feel at the moment, I swore I would never hurt you, and now I have; I'm disappointed in myself and no one hates me as much as I do. You may hate me for what happened, but it's nothing compared to the hate I feel towards myself, I'm...” He sighed deeply and closed his eyes for a moment, “I'm so very sorry. I promise you that it wont ever happen again, ever.”
After a while of staring at him, I saw his eyes begin to look scared of what I was about to say, he knew that if I said that I couldn't forgive him, then we were over. I knew that too, and of course I didn't want us to be over, but I couldn't find the right words to say, they got caught somewhere in my throat and I looked pleading up at him, as if begging him to say something instead. As if he knew what I wanted he whispered, “Please don't let this come in between us, please don't push me away...”
I had never heard him sound so vulnerable before, and I nodded weakly.
“I wont,” I whispered, and I wasn't sure if he had heard me, “I wont, Merlin no, I wont let it come in between us. I-,” I reached out to touch him again, and he didn't flinch away, “I forgive you, Draco. After all, it wasn't you – it was all her, if I should be angry with anyone it's her. Not you...”
Draco just looked at me, for the longest of seconds before he pulled me to him in a bone breaking hug and buried his face in the crook of my neck, as I rested my head on his chest.
“I love you so much,” he whispered, “I'm so sorry...”
“I know,” I mumbled and let my arms go around his waist, loving the warmth of his body, “I love you too,” I cleared my throat, “And, uh, sorry for hitting you...”
He chuckled and shook his head, letting me know it was okay. I tilted my head up and felt the need to lighten the mood.
“I still think it was rude of you to throw Blaise out,” I teased him, and he knew it.
“Oh, puh-lease!” he chuckled as he let me go and made his way towards the door, and as I opened my mouth to ask him what he was doing, and demand him to come back here because I missed the heat from his body, he simply put his finger to his mouth as if to tell me to keep quiet, he also gave a wink.
With a steady hold of the doorknob, he threw the door open and in fell Blaise, falling head first towards the floor and landed with a groan, from what I understood he had been standing with his ear pressed up against the wall; eavesdropping – again. I fell on to the bed as I burst out laughing at him, and the tension in the room was gone.
I nearly fell of the bed while laughing, and Blaise glaring at me didn't exactly help the situation much, he got up of the floor just as Draco and Amber walked inside, where those two had been; I had no idea. But apparently, Amber hadn't been with Blaise, since Draco had to go get her.
“It's really not that funny,” snorted Blaise as he sat down on the side of the bed.
“Yes, it is!” I managed to gasp out, before I started to calm down.
When I had stopped laughing all together, Draco and Amber was sitting down as well, and I noticed that there was a fair amount of tension between Blaise and his girlfriend, and something felt wrong about them.
“What's up with the two of you?” I asked and received a warning look from Draco, who obviously knew more than I knew, Amber had probably told him whatever it was when he had gone to get her.
“Small disagreement, is all,” replied Amber with a thin voice, while Blaise snorted.
“Small,” he huffed and Amber crossed her arms and clenched her jaw, while he stared down at his hands.
I realized that Draco and I hadn't been the only couple fighting. I didn't know where to rest my eyes, but I couldn't rest them on either Amber or Blaise, and to look at Draco would just make me want to ask questions, so instead I did what Blaise did; looked down at my own hands.
An awkward silence spread in the room and I felt uncomfortable.
Gods, people, say something!
“So...” Draco said suddenly, making everyone jump. Since it was a rare thing – Amber and Blaise fighting – I don't think he really knew what to say, “How about we all sleep in here tonight? We could bring up some sweets and... well, you know, try to have a good time?”
I think I understand what he meant to achieve with this sleep-over, Amber and Blaise wouldn't have to be alone with each other, and with that, they couldn't fight as much.
They both agreed and then Draco complained about wanting a TV, and that made Amber ask what he was talking about, and Blaise answered her question in a low voice, not at all enthusiastic as he would have if he hadn't been acting like such a baby.
“Oh, fun,” was all Amber said when she had gotten it explained to her.
“It is!” Draco said and leaned forward a bit, “I've told father to get me one, so perhaps I'll get one on my birthday.”
“Sorry to burst your bubble, mate, but Lucius wouldn't buy you anything Muggle-made,” said Blaise, to which Draco leaned back with a satisfied grin on his lips.
“Once again you forget just how much he loves to spoil me.”
“That's was a nice way of saying that you're a spoiled brat,” snorted Blaise, for a second it looked as if Draco would object to that, but instead he sighed and shrugged – knowing that Blaise was right.
Then he flashed me a smile and said, “But if I don't get one, I can always just floo over to Hermione's and watch hers.”
My heart skipped a beat at the idea of Draco coming with me home again, and I smiled back at him as if saying 'of course'.
I think our fight had been good for us, it had been a lot worse than our first fight, and it had really cleared the air. I wished that the same thing could happen between Amber and Blaise, since it was obvious that their fight had been bad as well, maybe even worse than ours.
“Speaking of going places,” said Blaise and snapped be out of my thoughts, “Are we or are we not spending the Easter holidays at Hogwarts?”
None of us spoke at first, but when it came clear to me that no one even had the intention to answer him, I decided to do it.
“I don't know, “ I said and ran my fingers through my hair, “but I do think that we should spend the holiday together, even if we don't stay at Hogwarts...”
Amber gave a small nod, and that was the only answer I got from her. Her boyfriend did, however, voice his agreement.
“Yeah, I feel the same,” he locked eyes with Draco, “Think you could let your parents to trust us enough to let us stay in Villa Prestige?”
He thought it over for a few seconds before shrugging, “I guess, but I think we should take one day to be with our families, before heading to Greece, it's the holidays, after all and I know that Hermione's gonna want to meet her parents for a while, even if only for a day. You and Amber should do the same,” he took a small pause, and we all nodded and when he continued; he looked at me, “Though, you wouldn't mind if I came with you to your house that one day, would you? And then the next day we could meet up here and have dinner – all of us, and then floo to Greece...”
“Sounds lovely, Draco,” I said, and then I bit my lower lip as I looked over at Amber, “But isn't it a bit too soon to be planning this? I mean, it's a while until Easter,” I tried to make Draco see how sad Amber looked, but he didn't get the hint, so I sighed and closed my eyes for a second, images of Draco back at my house appeared in my head and I was thrilled over the fact that he wanted to go back. While I was smiling at that, Amber leaned in and whispered in my ear.
“What's Villa Prestige?” Her dark blue eyes were big and I wasn't sure, but I think that she had been crying.
“It's the Malfoys house in Greece,” I whispered back, not sure why we were whispering.
“Oh,” she said and furrowed her eyebrows, “Is that where you and Draco went to?”
I nodded and thought back to when Draco and I had been there, the moments we had shared on the beach, when he had told me that he loved me, when we had made love for the first time... But as soon as I saw how sad Amber really looked, I stopped smiling at once and started to search her eyes for answers.
“What's wrong?” I whispered so that only she could hear.
“Bathroom...” She mumbled and got out of the bed and walked towards it, and I sat perfectly still and wondered what to do. She spun around just before entering the bathroom and looked at me, “You coming?”
I mentally slapped myself before I nodded and followed her. As I closed the door behind me, I heard my boyfriends angry hiss, “How bloody stupid are you!?”
Draco very rarely got upset with Blaise, so twice in a row made me realize that it was pretty bad.
As I looked ahead, Amber had her back against me, afraid to show me that she was crying, but I could tell that she was by the way her shoulder shook every so slightly. I reached out and put a hand on her shoulder, something which only made her cry harder.
“Amber, sweetie... What happened?” I hated to see her like this, and knowing that it was because of Blaise that she was crying made it much worse.
The blonde girl took a deep, shaky breath before answering me.
“We had a fight,” she said, and since I had figured out as much, I just waited for the rest, “I think – Oh, Merlin, I think...” she trailed off as she buried her face in her hands and sunk down on the floor, I followed her and put my arms around her from behind in a hug.
“It's okay...” I tried, knowing perfectly well that it obviously wasn't, “Tell me what happened...”
I held her until she calmed down and stopped sobbing, which didn't take very long.
“We fought about what he said earlier, I – I was upset with him for bringing it up, since I could see how much it hurt you to talk about it, and from your expression back then, I knew that you didn't want him to remind you of it.”
I nodded, she was right. I felt horribly guilty for being the reason of their fight, and I could barely look her in the eye. I felt as if it was my fault. She continued speaking, “I told him that, but he just told me that it wasn't a big deal, and then when I...” She took another deep breath, “When I told him how sad you had become, that I had seen it in your eyes, then he shrugged it off and said that 'it needed to be done so that you could work it out'.”
I sat there and chewed on my lip, as of yet, their fight didn't sound any worse than ours and the fact that they had both been right made it impossible for me to pick sides. Amber lowered her head and a strangled sob escaped her lips before she continued speaking.
“Then I called him something along the lines of being an arrogant, slimy, emotionless bastard who didn't care for his friends feelings – But, Hermione, you know I didn't mean it! I wish I could take it all back... I... It's just those things that comes out when you're talking too fast without thinking, and Merlin knows I didn't mean it. Everyone knows that he cares about his friends more than anything, and – oh, Merlin, why did I have to say that? I didn't mean it...” she gave me a pleading look, as if she expected me to have the answer to why she had said it. However, all I could do was sit there and stare at her, with a worrying, cold feeling growing in my stomach as more tears fell from her eyes. Of course I knew she hadn't meant it, but knowing Blaise; he wouldn't have been thrilled when hearing those words.
“W-What did he say?” I managed to choke out after a while, not sure if I wanted to hear the answer.
“He said – If that's how you feel about me then, maybe, we shouldn't be together any more...”
“No!” I gasped silently and even though I had suspected her to say something along those lines, it came as a small shock, “No, you can't break up. Not because of a disagreement you had about me and Draco. Merlin, Amber...”
We ended up hugging again, and she sobbed with her face hidden in my hair, and I stroke her long blonde curls.
“I don't want him to leave me...”
“I know, I know,” I comforted her in a mumble as I hugged her tighter. We both jumped at the sound of a knock on the door.
My head jerked up at the sound of the knock, and I waited for the person to speak, it was Draco.
“Blaise is heading down to go get us some sweets, anyone of you wanna go down there with him?”
I glanced at Amber, who shook her head sadly, she obviously didn't think it was a good idea for her to be alone with him this soon after their fight.
“Is it okay if I go?” I asked her softly, and she gave me a nod and a small smile.
“Coming!” I shouted over my shoulder, and I heard Draco walk away from the door, meaning that he had heard me. “I'm gonna knock some sense in to him,” I added before I walked out.
Once Blaise and I had stepped outside and closed the door behind us, I smacked him across his head – quite hard, actually.
“Ow!” he glared at me while rubbing the surface I had smacked, “What the heck was that for?”
“Amber,” I replied simply and started walking down the hall, and he followed me while muttering something under his breath, “What was that?” I demanded to know just as we turned a corner. He sped up so that we were walking side by side as he spoke.
“Just saying that I'm not surprised that you're taking her side. Girls...”
I came to an abrupt halt at his words, and he stopped as well, and looked at me curiously.
“Really, Blaise?” I gave him a small glare, “I thought you knew me better than that, I thought you knew me well enough to know that I don't take sides when it comes to my friends. Especially when you're both right,” as I spoke, Blaise's eyes widened before he nodded, obviously he did know me as well as I had thought, when he looked away I sighed, “So, what's the real reason to why you're considering breaking up with her?”
I wasn't stupid, I knew that there was more to it than him being upset with her for what she had said. I waited for him to answer me, and it took quite some time for him to push those words out.
“I don't know what's wrong with me,” he hung his head, “I mean, I'm not the relationship kind of guy am I? I'm still young, I should be free and single, I should be able to look around at other girls, and Amber deserves someone who doesn't think like this.”
We both stood there as his words hung in the air, he couldn't bring himself to look me in the eye and I knew it.
“How stupid are you?” I repeated my boyfriends words from earlier before I took a long, deep breath, “Answer me this, do you love her?”
“More than anything,” he sighed.
“Do you want to be with her?”
“Do you think that you two could last long?”
“Yes,” he said in defeat while narrowing his eyes at me, “Where are you gett-”
“But you wish to see what else is out there?” I ignored his attempt of speaking and watched how he seemed to relax at that question.
“Exactly,” he looked as if he found comfort in the fact that I had asked that question, as if he thought that I understood him. I didn't.
“Why would you want to mess with perfection? You love her, she loves you. You want to be together, you're so good for each other – why would you wanna find reasons to break it off? Why don't you just hang in there for a while? Give it a try. I think it's worth it. Even if you break up in three months, or three years, at least you can look back at it and you wont have to think 'what if'...”
I rolled my eyes as he gave a short nod and threw his arm around my shoulder, and started walking again, I had no choice but to follow. I inhaled his fresh scent and leaned against him.
“Blaise...” I began slowly, “What are you thinking about?”
“Amber, and what you said. You're right, as always, why do I always have to fuck things up? She's the one. Why do I do these things?”
Because you're a guy, I said in my head, but I didn't speak it out loud.
“What did she tell you, anyway?”
I bit my lower lip, pondering over what I should tell him, but I went for being straight up and honest with him.
“Well,” I said, “Pretty much everything... Though, she was crying very hard, so I might have missed a word or two,” I added just to make him feel a bit guilty.
“Bollocks,” Blaise groaned, “I didn't mean to make her cry...”
“I know. I hope you two work it out, she really loves you, you know.”
He did know that, but we decided not to talk about it any more and instead a creepy silence hung around us as we walked around in the dark Manor, the halls weren't lit up the slightest and it wasn't that I was afraid of the dark, I was more afraid of what could be lurking in the dark.
And having Blaise next to me, whispering about all sorts of things, Inferi hiding in the shadows, and Dementors just waiting for us around the corner, ready to suck out souls out.
“Shut it, Blaise,” I hissed at him, but still I walked closer to him.
“Who knows what kind of creepy things Lucius has hidden here, just think about it... Something could grab you and pull you in to darkness before I even noticed anything...”
I turned my head to glare at him, at the same time as he went 'Boooh...” in a attempt to sound spooky.
“Come off it, Zabini,” I mumbled and slapped him on his arm. It was like I couldn't keep from whispering when I spoke to him, it was like I was afraid that something would actually pull me in to the shadows if I spoke any louder, so in a small whisper I tried to change the subject as we towards the kitchen, “Are you signing up for the Quidditch-”
“Yeah,” he whispered back before I could even finish the sentence, “As a Beater. Are you singing up?”
I nodded as we walked in to the kitchen, “Narcissa made me say I would. But I don't know which position I wanna play... Keeper perhaps,” I began to look around the kitchen, but it was too dark, so I reached for my wand to get some light.
“Keeper, Miss Granger?”
Blaise and I screamed straight out at the sound of a voice, and I hugged Blaise's arm tightly as he pressed me against his body. After having walked around and been told that there's Inferi hiding in every corner – I was easily scared.
The room lit up with a flick of Lucius wand, and I could see that he covered his smile with his hand before shaking his head apologetically.
“I didn't mean to startle you,” he sounded far too amused for me to be able to take him seriously, he took in our horror struck faces and smiled once more. Slowly I let go of Blaise, who rubbed his arm where my nails had dug in.
“Oh, please,” I snorted, “You nearly suffocated me.”
Lucius seemed to ignore us as he stood up, he was dressed in black, I noticed, and he looked very...Elegant. His long blonde hair hung down his shoulders, and he took something in his hand as he moved a bit closer to us. I couldn't see what it was, though.
“Keeper, you say? They have to be wicked fast, and observant...” Without warning he threw the thing he held in his hand to me, and despite trying to catch it, I missed and it fell to the floor, I blushed furiously as I bent down to pick it up. It was a piece of dark chocolate, I looked at it for a while before I looked back at Lucius, without thinking, I threw it back at him - he caught it.
“You'd probably make a better Chaser, Hermione.”
“Really?” I said in surprise, Lucius of all people would know what makes a good Chaser having been one himself, “You think so?”
“Yes, if you're going to play Quidditch, then you should play Chaser. You look like one to me.”
I thought his words over, would I be able to play Chaser? I liked the way it sounded: Hermione Granger – Chaser. “So, where's my son?”
Lucius brought me back to reality but I didn't need to answer him, because Blaise took care of that, he told him that he was up in his room and that he had sent us down here to get some sweets, at that; Lucius raised his eyebrows, before he called for a house elf.
I hadn't seen a house elf around since my arrival, but sure enough, they had one. He or she looked very much like Dobby and Scrappy, so I assumed her or him to be related to them.
“Dinky,” Lucius began and I could see that he was trying really hard to sound somewhat friendly towards the little elf, Dinky seemed to be surprised at Lucius tone. I had a feeling that the reason why Lucius was suddenly nice to the elf was because someone had told him about S.P.E.W. “Bring some sweets up to Draco and his friends.”
“What would Master Draco and his friends like, sir?” when Dinky spoke, I could hear that it was a male, he sounded terrified and rather shocked, which only made me believe that Lucius was only acting even more.
“A bit of everything, and some extra Licorice Wands for Draco, he loves them...” Lucius turned to us, “Anything special you two want?”
“Yeah,” Blaise answered quickly, “Some strawberry flavoured, heart shaped lollipops, please,” he said. I figured that he would give them to his girlfriend, I do remember them to be her favourite. “Oh, and some Chocoballs. Hermione?”
“Uh... anything licorice, thanks.”
The house elf asked if we wanted anything else, but we kindly told him no, just asked it to be delivered to Draco's room.
“Don't you want anything to drink?” asked Lucius and to which Blaise and I looked at each other, and then Blaise broke out in a grin.
“A few Butterbeers?” he suggested and I gave a shrug.
Moments later, we were close to Draco's room, after a nervous walk back in the dark, and a long conversation about Quidditch. It felt good to have some alone-time with Blaise, I rarely had it, so it was fun. He made me feel so relaxed around him and not to mention – he was freaking hilarious.
“One thing that has been bugging me ever since we found Lucius down in the kitchen...” began Blaise as we rounded a corner, “Why on earth was Lucy sitting alone in the dark, eating chocolate?”
It wasn't that I hadn't thought about it, but the way Blaise said it, it made me break out in laughter, and I was supported by Blaise until we reached the door, which he opened and he gently pushed me inside, I was still laughing at what he had said.
I rushed over to the bed and threw myself on it, making both Draco and Amber move out of my way, but when on there, I started to calm down. I noticed that the elf had already been here, and that Blaise was already holding the lollipop he had wanted.
“Uh... Okay? What's up with her? Did you put a Cheering Charm on her or something?”
Draco looked at me as he spoke, but the question was obviously directed to Blaise, who shook his head.
“Nah, mate. We're just wondering why your father is downstairs, sitting for himself, in a kitchen which is pitch black, and why he, on top of it all, is eating dark chocolate...”
The serious feeling that had been in the room when we had entered, was gone and it was replaced by laughter, as the blondes joined in and we were all gasping for air at the image of dear old Lucy and his chocolate.
The fun only lasted for so long, though, because Blaise just had to interrupt.
“Amber, could I talk to you, for a second?” he asked her and she swallowed hard before she gave a nod and got up, “Or two...” he added as they both walked in to the bathroom and shut the door behind them.
Draco and I sat in the bed together, and our Butterbeers were levitating beside us, the bed was covered in sweets and we took turns in feeding each other.
Minutes passed and nothing was heard from inside the bathroom, I figured that they had put up a Silencing Charm.
“Open up,” said Draco softly as he leaned over and put a Chocoball to my lips, and I gently took a bite of it and tasted the strawberry mousse and the clotted cream, mixed with the delicate chocolate. Draco smiled sweetly at me, “You've got a bit of...” he nodded towards my lip, and I was about to lick my lips but he moved forward and gave me the most gentle kiss he had ever given me, it was close to feather light but it still made my heart flutter. He eased back far too quickly in my opinion. “There,” he said with a soft tone, “All gone.”
I was afraid that I wouldn't be able to put together a coherent sentence, so I just nodded to thank him. My hand trembled a bit when I reached for my Butterbeer which was levitating somewhere around my head, and took a sip of it.
I cleared my throat a bit and blushed under his amused stare.
“What's taking them so long?” I mumbled before taking yet another sip. Draco smiled crookedly before replying.
“Make up sex?”
I almost choked on my Butterbeer, it was such a Blaise thing to say and I hadn't expected it to come from Draco. He chuckled at my reaction and I blushed faintly.
“You really think so?” I asked and the only sign of a reply I got was a raised eyebrow which simply said 'Yes, don't you?'. My Butterbeer went back to levitating beside me, and I shrugged lightly, “It wouldn't surprise me,” I admitted as I picked up the half eaten Chocoball and brought it to Draco's lips, “Open up.”
He licked his lips before he did so, and then he took a bite of it, or well, he tried to put all of it in his mouth, something he shouldn't have. I laughed softly as I looked at him, with mousse all around his lips, and I leaned in to kiss it away.
As our lips met, I felt as if a jolt of electricity went through my body, he tasted like strawberry and the most sinful chocolate, I tried to be as gentle as he had been and I really did try to pull away shortly after, but I felt his lips press against mine in a attempt to deepen the kiss, and I was so close to being lost in the feeling of his soft lips. But I calmly broke the kiss and found myself staring straight in to a pair of steely grey eyes and I was lost within the depth of them, I didn't notice that he moved closer until I felt his fingers intertwine with my hair and grasp it – gently, and then he inched even closer, while looking in to my hazel eyes, and then he leaned down and captured my lips in a kiss just as sweet as the Chocoball we had just shared. Nothing about the kiss was rushed, and when he deepened it, he did it almost unnoticeable. It was very different from all the other kisses we had shared, when there had always been an undertone of need, lust and a sense of fighting for dominance, but in this kiss it was pure love.
We both hesitated for a second before we broke apart, as if trying to memorize the feeling, and then his lips left mine; leaving a tingling sensation. My eyes fluttered open to look at him, and I didn't need to tell him that I loved him, he already knew.
“Should we get in to our night clothes?” he whispered as he rested his forehead against mine. I nodded my agreement, but we didn't make a move to do so, instead we both sighed and stared in to each others eyes, but then Draco seemed to sober up from the bliss of our kiss. “Okay, up you go, love.”
I rolled my eyes, smiling, and did as he said. I glanced nervously at the door, not wanting Blaise, or Amber for that matter, to come out and see me while changing, but I decided that if I hurried then I would be done before they came out.
“Draco,” I said, to get his attention, and I turned around, to find him standing with his shirt half pulled off, turned towards me, as if waiting for me to continue. He couldn't see my face, due to the fact that his shirt was covering his eyes, and I couldn't keep from giggling a bit, “Uh, could you hand me the t-shirt on the chair over there?”
He pulled the t-shirt completely off him, and flashed me a smile before doing what I asked. I knew that he knew that I was staring at his bare chest, and I knew that he knew that I liked what I saw.
Draco threw the t-shirt at me, and I was close to miss it, and I knew right then that I would probably be the worst Keeper ever. I quickly changed in to the t-shirt I borrowed from Draco, and just in time, because Blaise and Amber stepped out of the bathroom just seconds after I had pulled the t-shirt on. Amber was absolutely shining of happiness, and I saw the same look on Blaise, which meant that they had made up. I looked closer at Amber and saw her messy hair and realized that Draco had been right. I glanced over at him, and he grinned widely.
'Told you,' he mouthed and sat down on the bed again, wearing nothing but a pair of black boxers and a new, clean, t-shirt. Apparently he didn't wanna hang out with his friends wearing only boxers. I certainly wouldn't have minded if he had.
We all threw ourselves on the bed, and I reached for a Licorice Wand just as Draco did so, and we began to jokingly fight over which one of us should get it. I ended up giving him it.
Hours later we had fallen asleep all over the bed. I awoke in the middle of the night to find that I had my head resting on Draco's chest, while my legs hung over Blaise's. Somehow, I had two arms around me, but only one of them belonged to Draco, I opened one of my eyes to see that the other one belonged to Blaise, who apparently had an arm wrapped around me, and with the other one he held Amber close to his body. In between the both boys, I felt completely safe, and loved. Now, if only they could stop snoring...
[Hey, all! Posted this just as the queue reopened, and I hope you enjoyed it. I've got the whole story planned out now, and it's about 18 chapters left. What do you think about that? How was this chapter?
I want to give a shout out to my kind of beta Alonia187 for being such a good friend, and also to lovehurtssoul for being a terrific beta and friend(she hasn't beta'ed this story, but who knows, maybe sometime in the future ;))
Also, thanks for all the nominations in the dobby's! I cried, ahaha :D
Please, leave a review. Thanks - Cathyyy
(also a big thanks to DarkRose at the forums for suggesting the chapter name!)]
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