That’s all she had. Just 1 day to say her goodbyes- to Ron, to Harry, and to Ginny. To her teachers. What would she tell them? “Oh, yes, I’ll be gone a month. Oh, right- I’m going to be going back in time to play cupid to Harry’s parents because Voldemort wants to break them up. And Dumbledore said there’s a minor glitch in the time return program so there’s a slight chance we might not be able to get back to present time. So if you see my fifty year old self walking by, say hi!” Somehow, she didn’t think that would go too smoothly. McGonagall was the only teacher who knew what was really happening and she was a pale mess of nerves right now- Hermione bet it just tore her apart to be sending seventeen year-olds into a huge risky battle like this. Damn- this wasn’t planned!!
I’ll ask Dumbledore to explain it to the teachers, she decided. I’ll never be able to think of something. Suddenly, Malfoy appeared at her side, head bowed.
“I explained to your teachers,” he whispered and caught up with her brisk pace.
“What’s the story?” she whispered back. They had a mutual agreement where they didn’t want to be seen in public talking to eachother- that would taint Malfoy’s reputation and Hermione could just hear the fury in Ron’s voice when he’d ask why she’d been hanging around ‘the Weasel’.
“You’ve been accepted into the Young Witch Travelers Academy- a small program that lasts a month that specializes in sending witches all over the world to learn how to live in the muggle world when using magic.”
“What if they find out I don’t really go there?”
Malfoy gave her a quick, rare grin. “But it doesn’t exist so how will they ever know?”
“There will be fake letters sent from you to Hogwarts, and fake pictures of you in France- which is where the Academy sent you.”
Hermione stopped dead in her tracks for a second, realizing something heart-stopping. “What do I tell Harry and Ron?”
Malfoy grinned evilly. “That’s your problem.You-”
She whipped around to retort, but he was gone just as quicky as he came. Damn! But why did he leave in the middle of a sentence? One quick glance behind her brought her her answer.
“Ron, Harry,” she said, trying to sum up a fake smile.
“’Mione,” Ron said happily, “there’s this great program going on that I think you should join!”
Hermione groaned inwardly. Ron was always going on about the Experimentalists Program, which was where witches and wizards from Hogwarts go to different places to find magically altered animals. Ron was weirdly into that stuff. She’d heard the “this great program that I think you should join” sentence a billion times, all about the Experimentalists. He seemed to be forgetting that I always say no, she thought wearily.
“Ron, I already said no!” She felt really guilty- how could she tell him she was going to another “program” when he so badly wanted all three of them to go to this one.
“Yeah, Ron,” Harry chimed in, “I’m getting sick of all this begging to go to the program. I’m sure Hermione had better things to do. Besides, lets enjoy this last year at Hogwarts together!”
Hermione felt so, so guilty. “Yeah,” she agreed weakly, “together.”
Ron slumped his shoulders. “Fine- but its not the Experimentalists program,” he muttered. “It’s different.”
Great, Hermione thought. Now it’s some program to rescue wildlife or something of the other.
“Itscallyungitchtraversgram,” Ron grumbled.
Hermione’s head snapped up. “What?”
“I said, it’s called the Young Witch Travelers Program,” he said angrily.
“Really?” said Hermione, trying to act neutral. “That sounds interesting.”
“Yeah, well it is, but you don’t seem interested.” He scuffed the concrete floor with his sneaker. He sounded like a sulking child.
“No, really, Ron, I am,” she said desperately. “It sounds fun!”
“Huh,” Ron said doubtfully.
“Please tell me.”
Ron looked at her, then smiled. “Well, ok. It’s this program for witches your age to travel the world! You’ll get to go everywhere… just if you go, make sure to bring me back all sorts of sweets- I heard when you go to Germany you have to work in a chocolate shop…”
“Right,” Hermione interrupted, “how do I sign up?”
Hermione stared at the feast of lunch meats, soups with different shapes of noodles, sliced tomatoes cut thinly and sprinkled with oil, vinegar, basil, and pepper and salt, and the small assorted salads. She moved her fork around her plate with not much of an appetite. “Er, Ginny?” she asked.
Ginny was holding hands with the blissful Harry on the other side of her, her cheeks slightly red from what Harry had just whispered in her ear. “Yeah?”
“Well, erm, I’m leaving tomorrow to go to this… program and I won’t be back for a month. Just thought I’d tell you.” Hermione tugged down on the red shirt she was wearing because the collar had risen uncomfortable around her neck, nearly strangling her.
Ginny waved her hand and beamed. “Oh, the way Ron’s going on about it, I thought I’d sign up too!”
Hermione’s breath hitched and her voice came out a squeak, “oh yeah?”
“Yeah,” Ginny beamed, “then we can go together!” Ginny’s long hair, which she recently had given herself magical auburn highlights, was braided into a long ponytail that swished excitedly as she moved and talked.
“Well, um, we might not be transferred to the same place…” Hermione said desperately and put on a weak sad smile.
“Well, I got Germany,” she rolled her eyes, “now Ron’s practically at my feet begging me to bring him back some candy. My brother,” she concluded, “is completely crazy.”
Hermione failed to hold back a sigh of relief. Of course Ginny wouldn’t get stationed at the same place as her- Dumbledore made up the program! He’d probably just whisk Ginny off to Germany and tell her to explore and observe for a month. “There is a hidden truth in every well-meant lie,” she mimicked Dumbledore in a low voice under her breath.
“What?” Ginny glanced at Hermione, her eyes wide and innocent.
“Go back to your little giggles. I didn’t hear any of it.”
Ginny let out a puff of breath in relief and smiled, then went back to whisper something in Harry’s ear. He gave her a sly smile and whispered something back, at which she turned bright red and let out a breathless squeak.
Hermione looked at them in disgust, her appetite completely gone now. “I don’t even want to know,” she told them as she shuddered and grabbed her black and red leather bookbag and left.
On the way out, she was looking back at Harry and Ginny and wondered, despite all the times she had caught them snogging in doorways, how she would survive without them if she wasn’t able to come back. I’d probably end up writing depressing poetry where I cut their heads off or something, she decided. She crinkled her nose and admitted in her mind that she was going insane.
Suddenly someone bumped into her roughly and as she frowned at the blonde-haired Slytherin who walked away, she felt for the something he had shoved in her pocket as he pretended to fall. Sometimes Malfoy seemed way over the top in this secret stuff. I bet he’s enjoying every last bit of it- he doesn’t care about anybody here that he might never be able to see again! She drew out of her black robe pocket a small note written on green and silver paper that read,
Meet dumble and me at his office in three
Nice rhyme, she thought sarcastically. Now, I can only assume he meant three hours, since three minutes would make no sense. But how much effort would it be to add the word ‘hours’ at the end? Because it would mess up his stupid rhyme, that’s why. Hermione was more upset then she would liked to admit over the goodbyes, and all the rolling feelings inside her had to be unleashed, so she automatically chose Malfoy to be angry with. That arrogant ass, she thought, who does he think he is to make this all more confusing?
She saw the end of his robe swishing around the corner and balled up the note in her hand and ran towards him, pretending that every time her combat-boot-covered foot hit the ground, she was jumping on Malfoy’s head. This caused her to look rather funny, but it gave her great satisfaction and she would be gone in a day, so who cares? She reached Malfoy, tapped him on the shoulder, and threw the balled note in his face when he turned around.
His face was three inches apart from hers when he turned around, and throwing the ball at his face had caused it to bounce off and hit her chest before falling to the floor. And this of course, caused Malfoy’s arrogant gorgeous blue eyes to look at her chest. Before Hermione knew what she was doing, she had backed up and then slapped Malfoy as hard as she could.
“Ow!” she screeched, “what is your damn face made of? Metal?!”
Malfoy looked shocked, his hands limp at his side, and his face red and, she could tell, stinging. Then a smirk crossed his face and he grabbed Hermione’s thin wrist and pulled her along with him.
“What the hell?” she shouted, not caring if the whole hall saw her screeching and skrieking as Malfoy dragged her across. “Where the hell are you taking me? MALFOY HAVE I EVER TOLD YOU-”
He quickly whisked out his wand, muttered a spell, and a soft towel appeared in Hermione’s mouth. Not only was it not allowing her to speak, it was Slytherin colors, which was too much for her to stand. She balled her fists and punched Malfoy’s toned chest again and again, with no reaction except that suddenly she was dragged into a broom closet. Broom closets are never good, she thought wearily. A sudden, brilliant thought popped into her head. My wand! My wand my wand my wand!
But of course, she saw her wand in Malfoy’s pocket. Malfoy came over to her and gently took the towel off her face. For some reason, his electric touch against her cheek, the dim lighting in the dusty closet, and the way his icy blue eyes sparkled made her breath hitch all over again, though in an entirely different way. “Have I ever told you-” she started again.
Malfoy cut her off by moving closer to her, so they were an inch apart and his blue eyes looked at her with some… weird emotion that Hermione had never seen. “Shut up, Granger," he told her arrogantly and right when Hermione was going to give him another slap and push him away from her, her whole body went numb as his hands slid to her hips and his lips came crashing down onto hers.
Next chappy soon! I edited it because it made my blood boil in disgustment at how cheesy i made it and it was rubbing against my skin :) next chp they travel into the future!
p.s. the next chapter is when they get sent back in time and they MEET two new characters (two of the ones that you readers made up :)) AND I WILL UPDATE SOON!
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