Chapter 1 : Through the Fabric of Time
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Dear Merlin, Ronald is such a dolt. I don’t know why it has only now started to jump out at me, but it has. Oh yes, it has. I suppose tensions are high though…with that man Sirius Black on the loose from Azkaban. Everyone is a little touchy these days; except, for some reason, Harry (of all people). I’m not as naïve as I look. I know that there is some connection between Sirius Black and Harry. It’s written all over the faces of the adults who speak to him, Mr. Weasley especially.
Anyways, tensions between Ronald and I are high, and I suppose it all started when I got my cat, Crookshanks. Well of course, we have always bickered a bit, but Harry says now it’s worse than ever. He won’t stop ragging on poor Crookshanks. And all for his stupid, disgusting, fat rat Scabbers. Oh, well. If he wants to be in a huff, fine. I however, am above petty grudges. No way am I going to dwell on stupid Ronald and his stupid rat and his stupid attitude. No. I am so over it. Even now, as I am sure you can tell, I am over it. So over it that I am already a football field away, a trip around the moon away…alright fine. So maybe I’m not really over it. But I’m working on it. People say that the mind can make you think anything. I just hope it amends its thinking soon. So much thought about Ronald cannot be healthy. For anyone, but especially for me.
And anyways, there is someone else. When I think about him, it feels like I’m committing a sin so putting it into words will be virtually impossible. Maybe I can give you hints and you can guess. Who am I kidding? I can say it. After all, you are the only one who can hear me, and you came here for this story:
Oh bother, I just can’t do it. Hints it is then:
Hint Number One: Harry would hate me forever if he ever found out. Or kill me.
Hint Number Two: Everyone else whom I love would hate me forever/kill me if they ever found out.
Hint Number Three: He is supposed to be my worst enemy (any guesses now?)
Hint Number Four: Society would never let us be together.
Hint Number Five: It’s not just me. When I say that, I mean this isn’t a one-sided crush. He likes me too—a lot. He kissed me once last year, my first kiss ever. That hint isn’t so much help with the guessing, but I had to write it down. I suppose I am rather proud of it.
Gods, I didn’t WANT to like Malfoy (eek! I said the name! Oh well, it is over with now so it must be some sort of sign). It just happened. Honestly, the way his hair flips back into his eyes, and the way his pale skin glows luminescent in the moonlight. I have to stop thinking about that…or else…well, I’ll get carried away.
As much as I adore Draco, he has one HUGE problem. He is such a git. He’s an arrogant toe rag, and he cannot help it, it’s just how it is. But I like him still, and he’s trying to change. I dunno if that will ever happen, but I can hope right? A girl has to have something to hold onto.
My friends and I have already gotten everything we needed at Diagon Alley, so now we wait in the Leaky Cauldron for the few days left in August to pass, and we can finally go back to Hogwarts. Hogwarts means Draco, and Draco means…well I don’t know what it means exactly. Oh, what if he doesn’t like me anymore? What if he wants that pug-faced Parkinson, now? I mustn’t think on it too long or I’ll go into a panic. Best if I just sit tight and see what happens.
September 2, 1993
I have to remind myself to take deep soothing breaths. If not, I might forget to breathe altogether and suffocate and die. Something terrible has happened. I don’t know how, and I don’t know why, it just did. And it is absolutely mortifying. You don’t understand. I have to start at the beginning for that to happen. The day we were supposed to be going back to Hogwarts. We had just gotten into our compartment:
“Everywhere else is full,” Harry said. “Do you think he’s really asleep?” He nodded at the ragged looking man in the compartment.
“Seems to be,” Ron muttered.
“Good,” Harry whispered, entering and closing the door. “I have something to tell you guys.” Ronald and I sat, questioningly, as Harry began to tell us of the story Mr. Weasley had told him: that the escaped convict, Sirius Black, was after Harry, out to seek vengeance. Surprisingly, Harry did not look scared, more incredulous than anything else. Just as he was wrapping up his story, I saw a movement outside.
I glanced out through the glass to see Malfoy lounging against the wall. My heart caught in my throat. He looked up at me. His eyes shifted down the aisle toward the direction of the bathroom. Oh God, I thought. Draco walked off in that direction. I sat still for a moment, my heart pounding fiercely in my chest. Now the boys were babbling about something stupid and mindless. What did I have to lose?
“I…err, have to go—you know,” I mumbled as I stood up.
“Yeah, yeah, whatever Hermione,” Ron shook his hand at me. God, sometimes that boy was insufferable.
I left, rolling my eyes. My annoyance soon vanished, as I walked toward the bathroom in which I presumed Draco was waiting for me. My stomach formed a huge, complex knot, and I thought that I might never be able to figure out how to untangle it. Ever.
I stopped with my hand on the knob. Here goes nothing, I thought. No, I corrected myself. Here goes everything. I twisted the knob in. Before I could get my bearings, someone grabbed me by the front of my robes—which I had already changed into—and yanked me into the room. I felt my front pressed up against a another body that was beginning to take on the muscles of a man, rather than a boy. I looked up into Draco’s sparkling gray eyes. I let out a breath that I hadn’t been realizing I’d held in. He still wanted me after all.
“What if that hadn’t been me?” I asked disapprovingly. “What if you had pulled a stranger into the room?”
“I knew it was you,” he said frankly. “I just knew.”
“Oh.” I didn’t really have anything else to say.
“Hermione?” He asked. I looked up at him and raised an eyebrow. “I really want to kiss you.”
I blushed and looked down. “You don’t have to ask, Draco.”
I shook my head. “No. I’m—I’m kind of yours? Right?”
He smiled then. He really smiled. He didn’t do it often. It was like a precious little gift that he saved just for me. He leaned over to me. I smelled his breath, a sweet cinnamon mixed with whatever candies and chocolate he had consumed on the train so far. It was delicious; mouthwatering, in fact. I feel so dirty saying that...or even thinking it! But it’s only the truth so what am I supposed to do, censor it? I don’t think that anyone listening to this will judge me, you're here for my real story after all, right? But, back to the matter at hand:
He leaned over but didn’t kiss me. No, that special little moment was initiated by yours truly. I couldn’t stand being that close to him without feeling the warm taste of him on my mouth. It was meant to be soft and cautious. He had only kissed me once, and that was a quick peck on the lips. And we were quickly separated for three months after that happened. On the other hand, maybe that’s why it ended up more than a little kiss this time. I don't exactly know words to describe it. Maybe...God, I can’t think of a word at all. Now, reflecting on it, I am distracted by the warm fuzzy feeling that still erupts in the pit of my stomach.
Kissing really wasn’t as hard as I’d always imagined. You’d think you would have no idea what to do, but when it happens, you just…do. I felt like a flower opening up to take in the warm sun. I didn’t have to think, my nature just led my actions. I can’t describe it any better than that. And I sound like a stupid love struck teenager, but I can’t help that either, because I think that’s what I am.
Draco broke away from me, a little bit breathless, I was pleased to note. “God, Granger. The things you do to me.” I glowed with pleasure that I could do anything to him at all. Draco shook his head and smirked. “Who would have thought that a mudblood would be the only person who could heat me up like that?” He didn’t mean for that comment to be a finalist on the list of Worst Things to Say When You’re Making Out, but it definitely ruined the moment. I stiffened under his hands and turned away my head. Draco realized his mistake. “Oh,” he mumbled. “Damn it, I—I didn’t mean to, you know…be an arse. It just came out.” He smirked. “Arse just comes too easily to me. Like second nature.”
I wanted to nod and agree to that but I couldn’t bring myself to it. “No,” I said instead. “It’s fine.” I turned to walk out. “I’ll see you in the castle, Draco; where we go back to pretending to hate each other.” I opened the door, but Draco reached out and stopped it with his hand.
“Don’t leave mad,” he begged. “Please, I didn’t mean it that way; it slipped out before I could think about it.”
I turned toward him. Grabbing his chin, I pulled his face toward me. When his lips were an inch from mine, I repeated: “I said, don’t worry about it.” I grabbed one of his lips between my own and pulled on it, drawing it out. “I’m hard to break,” I whispered. I had no idea where this crazy outgoing side of me emerged from. Someplace deep in my personality that Draco stirred up and unleashed. I am not that kind of person! At least...I don't think I am. Maybe deep down, I've always wanted to be a little rebellious.
“Well that’s good news for me then,” he said smiling a mischievious smile. “Because I would hate to break you."
“Not now,” I said, shaking my head at his innuendo. “I’ve got to get back. They’ll wonder where I am.” Draco nodded in compliance. I laid my hand on the doorknob and gasped—this time for a very different reason. I sank to the floor in a heap. I looked up, barely keeping my wits about me, to see that Draco had also fallen and was whimpering a bit.
This was the second thing that happened that day that is hard to describe. I suddenly felt like nothing would ever be happy again, even though I had been having the best time of my life a few seconds ago. In my distress, I could still remember reading about such symptoms: dementors. It made no sense though. Why would they be on the train? I don’t know what happened to me for a while, and I don’t know how long I just collapsed on the ground practically comatose, but I do remember that I could do nothing until that feeling had gone.
In retrospect, I realized it must have only taken a few minutes. I raised myself shakily, Draco getting to his feet behind me. Touching his collar, I said, “Get back and see how everyone is doing. I’m going to Harry and Ron.” Draco nodded slowly, and walked out. I gathered myself and walked toward my compartment. The people in their own compartments looked shaken up, and puzzled. Fortunately, no one was hurt.
I opened the door just as the older man was lifting Harry into a sitting position. “Eat this,” he said, offering Harry something. “It’s chocolate. It helps, it really helps.” Things went by in a blur. I gathered that the presence of the dementors had made Harry pass out. The man, Lupin he said, went to go talk to the conductor. Neither of the boys asked me where I had been, thankfully. I would have lied if they did, but it wouldn’t have been fun.
It certainly was a mystery. People said they had been searching the train for Sirius Black. I suppose that’s true, but I can’t imagine that he would ever be on the train in the first place. Come one, he escaped from Azkaban; the man isn’t stupid enough to bum a train ride off of the Hogwarts Express! Honestly.
The remainder of the ride was uneventful (except for the fact that my stomach wouldn’t settle down and I desperately craved the taste of Draco on my lips). We rode the horseless carriages to the castle, and Professor McGonagall took me and Harry aside. I didn’t know what she wanted him for, but I knew why she wanted to speak to me.
After Harry left, I walked into her office. “Hello, Professor,” I said, smiling at her. I loved McGonagall. She was a strict, no-nonsense teacher, but deep down, she was such a softie.
She smiled at me and nodded to the seat across from her. I sat down. “Are you very sure you want to do this, Ms. Granger?” She asked. “Even though it is a huge responsibility, I want you to know I have the utmost trust in you. I would trust none of the students more, even the older ones,” she continued sincerely. It warmed my heart that she thought so well of me.
“Absolutely sure, Professor. If I fall behind, or have too much work, I promise I will drop some classes so I can take all the ones I want in a regular day. As it is, I cannot choose. They all sound so wonderful.”
McGonagall smiled. “Well, I certainly cannot reprimand you for wanting to learn, dear.” She opened a desk drawer and pulled out a funny looking hourglass thing.
I gasped. “Is that it?”
She nodded. “We had to get it especially for you, from the Ministry.” She held it out to me, and I grabbed it by the long gold chain. “In spite of my trust for you, I cannot caution you enough, Ms. Granger. Time is such a dangerous thing. Many a bright witch or wizard has perished at its unforgiving hand.” She pursed her lips. “I think I should give you a quick lesson before I set you free with it.” She walked up to me, and slung the chain around my neck and hers. She gingerly took the device—the Timeturner. “Turn it in this fashion,” she said, touching the bulb. “Each turn is an hour, so count carefully. If you mess up, it could be catastrophic. Today, we’re only going one hour back.” She turned it once. For a moment, everything spun. Then, we were back in her office, everything exactly the same as it had been the moment before. Except for the fact that McGonagall was standing next to me—and sitting at her own desk.
My mouth dropped to the floor. Desk-McGonagall looked up. “Hello, Hermione, dear,” she said. “I wasn’t expecting to see you for another hour, but it is a welcome surprise.” She nodded to Future-McGonagall, and went back to her papers.
“H-hi, Professor,” I stuttered.
Future-McGonagall took my shoulder. “The students are just entering the castle,” she said. “Be sure not to run into yourself. You would think you’d have gone crazy. And make sure no one sees both of you at the same time. That also, would be bad.” She extracted herself from the necklace and stepped back. “Scurry on now, Ms. Granger. And good luck with all of your classes.”
I nodded, too stunned to say anything, and walked out. Coming toward the Entrance Hall, I heard a commotion of voices. I peeked around the corner, and saw everyone entering the Great Hall. Draco saw me, and nonchalantly walked toward me.
“Hey,” he said, slinging his arms around my waist. I shivered at his touch. He frowned. “Cold?”
I shook my head. “Nope, it’s just you.” He smiled at my bold words, and leaned forward to get access to my mouth. I let him (of course). He kissed me, and my legs went weak. I pulled back from him, aand put my hand over my lips. "They tingle," I told him.
He smirked. "That's what they're supposed to do," he said with a crooked smile. "Granger?" He asked. I looked up at him, questioningly. He shook his head amiably. "You talk to much."
"Yeah," I said, embarrassed. "So I've heard. What can I say? I like to talk." I looked up at him boldly. "But I think I've found something better than talking."
"What?" He asked, playing along.
"You," I answered with a little smile lighting my lips. I leaned forward again, and he met me half way.
I swear I was being good. Very, very good, considering the circumstances. But still, I couldn’t help it when a little moan escaped from my lips into his mouth. Draco broke away, and cleared his throat, embarrassed. I looked up, surprised to see that he was red, and his hands were shaking a little. I shook my head to clear it. “Sorry,” I said. “I just—I’m sorry.”
He waved his hand. “No, don’t be. It’s just, if you make noises like…that, I’m going to get carried away. I’m not going to be able to—restrain myself. I’m going to give in and do things that I—we, shouldn’t be doing. Not now.”
I nodded, nervous. What did he mean he wouldn't be able to restrain himself? I realize full well that I should be frightened of Draco. Honestly, I am a little frightened of Draco. But I also cannot seem to stop wanting him. It was like a sicknesss I suppose. When he said those words, and when I thought that about him, my pulse sped up considerably, and it had been going pretty fast to begin with. That’s what happens when you’re making out with a golden angel.
But when he kissed me lightly again, I didn’t really care about anything besides the fact that I almost wished our lips would get super-glued together so that they never had to part. I raised my hand to his face and ran it through his shimmering hair. I thought I felt him shudder, but I was shuddering myself so I couldn’t be sure. We had ceased kissing, but it was hard for me to catch my breath because of the fizzy feeling in my stomach and the craving I had for Draco, which was what I imagined being addicted felt like.
“We should get back to the feast,” I said. He nodded, but didn’t make a move to go. “We shouldn’t be so out in the open. Anyone could have come across us here.”
“Yeah, anyone at all,” he paused. His voice sounded strained. “I don’t much like this secret. I want to be with you. And I don’t want to keep it a secret, like some coward. I’ve been a coward for too damn long. I want to tell people. I want to stand up in the Great Hall and scream out to everyone that I have just spent the last half an hour kissing the most intoxicating person on the face of the planet. I want to walk up to you in front of everyone, grab your hand, and carry your books to class.”
I was impressed by his little speech. I smiled. “I agree,” I said simply. “Harry and Ron won’t be happy, but they’ll just have to deal. I get to do whatever the hell I want and they can’t stop me.” I looked up into his gorgeous silver eyes. “And you are what I want.”
Draco beamed at me happily. “Tomorrow then,” he said, kissing me again.
“Tomorrow,” I agreed. He kissed me once more, swiftly and left for the hall. I decided to wait a few more minutes until he was settled before I entered.
I took out the Timeturner the Professor had given me. It was a curious little thing. I looked around. The corridor was totally deserted. Nobody would see if I gave it a whirl. I wanted to try it out by myself. Besides, the castle would be awesome when nobody was in it yet. It would be like a learning experience.
I turned the bulb a few times, my hands shaking from anticipation. Wait, how long did I want to go back? Three hours? How many times had I turned it already? Was that two or three? Or had it even been one? Well, I’ll just give it another, what could it hurt? Okay, that was three, right? Or maybe it was just two after all…
Soon, I was hopelessly lost. I had already messed up on McGonagall’s advice: “Count carefully; if you mess up, it could be catastrophic.” Oh no…
In my haste, I lost my grip and it tumbled to the floor. Frightened, I picked it back up, hoping it was still intact. It was, but it was spinning rapidly in the opposite direction. I tried to stop it but was futile. The world around me began to morph. And it didn’t stop after just a second, as it had before. I backed myself against the wall, and tucked my head into my lap, rocking myself, and trying to wake up from this nightmare.
When I reopened my eyes, everything was still. I was in the same corridor, just as deserted as before. I heaved a sigh of relief. Maybe it had short-circuited and ceased to function. I leaned my head against the wall.
“Excuse me!” I recognized that sharp voice. Professor McGonagall. Oh, thank heavens; it was a fluke after all. I turned around to her and gasped. It was her alright but she was…old. Professor McGonagall wasn’t the youngest woman on the face of the planet, but she was really, really old. She had many more wrinkles, and her hair was now pure white (though still in the severe bun). “What are you doing here, child? Everyone is just finishing up supper; you should be in the Great Hall! The Welcoming Feast doesn’t wait you know!” She approached me and stopped dead. I saw her hands begin to shake. “Dear Merlin,” she paused. “You look exactly like…I—I don’t recognize…” She stopped dead and ran a hand over her face.
“Professor,” I said. “What’s going on? Why are you--? I was j-just trying it out, I don’t know what happened.” I held up the Timeturner.
This seemed to make her more distressed. “Ms. Granger?” She asked hesitantly. I nodded. “Oh dear me!” She clutched her heart. I hoped I hadn’t given her a heart attack. But McGonagall was much stronger than that. She perked up at the sound of footsteps. She ran over and grabbed my arm. “Hermione, listen to me. I don’t have time to explain right now, but you just have to accept that, alright? There is someone coming around the corner that will give you quite a shock. Take it in stride, my dear. Take everything in stride. You are the smartest witch I know, dear.” She paused, apparently searching her brain. “Okay, you are a third year whose parents have been doing missionary work in India. You have been homeschooled, but when they were killed in an accident last summer, you came back to England, and are here at Hogwarts on a full scholarship. That is your story, dear. Remember it. Stick to it.” She looked over my shoulder. “Here they come. Meet me in my office first thing tomorrow morning.” With no other word, she left quickly as a flash.
Breath was coming in a difficult manner. I didn’t exactly know what was going on, but from what I gathered, I had (like an idiot) managed to transport myself to the future. I didn’t usually swear, but all I could think was, Oh, shit.
I turned around at the sound of voices. I heard a boy: “Not on your life, Scorpius.” Laughing. “Not even if I was the last woman on Earth and you were the last man, and the continuation of our race depended on it.” More laughing, this time sounding more forced. I looked up at the people, and almost ran into one of them. I looked up into silver eyes framed by the pale angel hair that I so loved to run my hands through.
“Draco!” I exclaimed. “Dear Merlin, what are you doing here?” He looked at me like I was off my rocker.
“How do you know my father?” He asked.
My eyes widened. When I looked closer, I could tell this was certainly not Draco, though he looked almost exactly the same. Another boy spoke. “Do you know this person, Scorpius?” I looked at him. This cannot be happening, I thought as I turned my head and gaped at the Harry-look-alike. Had I really just landed myself amongst the children of my generation? I was so totally screwed…
A/N: How was this for a start? I'd like to your hear your thoughts on this chapter in a review! Thanks for reading!