Chapter 1 : You're not even eating, Get out of here!
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"Ah," sighed Hermione as she made her way down to the great hall for breakfast. She felt relieved. Today was the day after she had finally spilled her deepest secret to her best female friend Ginny. She'd finally told her that she liked Draco Malfoy. Of course, she never would have told Ginny under normal circumstances, but that girl was too nosy for her own good. Hermione was afraid that she'd figure it out on her own and then get Ron and Harry involved, and that was something she just couldn't have.
Even though the war was long over, and it was discovered that Malfoy never participated in any death eater activities, Ron and Harry still hated him with a passion. They took great pleasure in calling him a ferret. Hermione felt rather bad for the poor chap. He's lost his father in the war and was currently living with his mother. Most of the public didn't believe that he was innocent of all crimes and they wholeheartedly believed that he was just like his father. A merciless cold-hearted killer. Hermione knew that wasn't true though. She and Malfoy shared head duties together and she'd seen a side of him that she was sure that no one else at Hogwarts had seen, save for maybe his best mate Blaise.
She'd noticed that he was much quieter this year and didn't hang out with those two human brick walls, otherwise known as Crabbe and Goyle. He stopped calling the trio, Scarhead, Weasel and Mudblood. In fact, he didn't go out of his way to insult them anymore. For the most part, he left them alone instead choosing to keep to himself. Hermione figured that the war had taken it's toll on him. He had fought for the light side during the final battle and had seen his father struck down before his very own eyes by Bellatrix Lestrange. Everyone guessed it was safe to say that the woman had finally lost it, attacking her ally. Hermione thought it must have been really hard for Malfoy. While Lucius may not have been the most caring of fathers, he was a father nonetheless and she couldn't even imagine watching her own father die before her very eyes.
"Oof," grunted Hermione as she rounded a corner and walked into something hard and warm. She looked up into the calm gray steel-like eyes of the subject of her thoughts. Speak of the devil, she thought. She let her eyes quickly go down his frame. He really is quite handsome, she thought, he can't know that I like him that would just be awful. While she believed that Malfoy had changed for the better, she wasn't really one for risking public humiliation by letting him know. It was one thing to have Ginny know, but the man himself, well that was just not going to happen.
"Granger, you really should watch where you're going," said Malfoy as he reached out with his arms and straightened her.
"Oh, I'm sorry! Guess you're right," she blushed hoping he didn't notice.
The two started walking towards the great hall together, neither really talking, it was a comfortable silence, not at all awkward like one might believe. Hermione wouldn't go as far as to say they were friends, but they were definitely not enemies anymore, more like acquaintances.
"Oh hey, Granger, I just remembered that Dumbledore asked to meet with us in his office after breakfast."
"Do you know why?"
"No, but I think it's because he wants to organize some kind of school activity, you know, the mingling of different houses, unions being made, the typical from the old Coot."
Hermione giggled as he said that. As they walked they argued back and forth in a playful manner about whether or not Dumbledore really was a bit off.
"Okay, okay! You got me, so he might be a BIT off his rocker, but he is still a perfectly normal, intelligent and hardworking individual," reasoned Hermione.
"A bit?" snorted Draco, "More like he's completely los-" at that point the two had reached the great hall and opened the door. Everything quieted down as the pair were seen together standing in the doorway. Hermione looked around completely confused as to why everyone was suddenly staring at her and Draco as though they'd just grown two heads. Then she heard the familiar voice of her best friend Harry shout from the Gryffindor table,
"MIONE! TELL US IT'S NOT TRUE! PARVATI SAID LAVENDER TOLD HER THAT SEAMUS OVERHEARD YOU TELLING GIN THAT YOU HAVE A THING FOR MALFOY!"
That was when Hermione looked at the red face of Ron and the upset face of Ginny. She understood than why everyone was staring at the two of them. She was afraid to meet the gaze of Draco Malfoy which she could feel burning into the side of her already red from embarrassment face.
"Mimblewimble..." she whispered, completely mortified. She turned on her heel and walked out of the great hall as fast as her mary jane's would take her. She reached the wall around the corner and leaned against it. Oh no, what do I do? Malfoy obviously knows now! Should I just ignore it... maybe he'll ignore it? Yeah, we'll act like this never happe-
"So Granger, you got a crush on me?" asked a very smug Draco Malfoy as he came up beside her and looked at her with that trademark smirk.
"Uh... well we must be getting to Dumbledore's! He's expecting us!" Hermione practically shrieked as she started speed walking towards his office.
Of course that wouldn't be enough to deter Malfoy. He easily kept up with her steps. Taking one large one for every two small ones of hers.
"You know Granger, it's really not that bad a thing, liking me. I mean, lots of girls do, you're not the only one, so stop being shy. Is it because of my devilishly good looks? Or my sweet and charming personality? Don't be shy! You can tell me!"
"Mhmmm," was all that Hermione replied.
'Granger, for being the smartest witch of the year, you really aren't that smart you know. Ignoring me isn't going to make your crush go away," He admonished.
"Malfoy, you already know it's true, so it's really not going to change anything by hearing me say it," Hermione quietly said as she continued speed walking.
"Yes it will, go ahead Granger tell me you like me, come on, I know you want too,"
"Malfoy No I D-"
"Granger, let's not lie to ourselves now, we both know you like me so why don't you just go ahead and say it,"
"Come on Granger, just say it, three little wor-"
"I LIKE YOU! OKAY, I LIKE DRACO SODDING MALFOY!"
"Good, Because I like you too Granger"
Wait what? But Draco was already off walking towards Dumbledore's office, acting as though he hadn't just confessed he liked her back.
"MALFOY! WAIT, DO YOU REALLY MEAN THAT?" she screamed down the hall, he really was a fast walker.
"Come on Hermione, let's not dawdle now, the old coot awaits!" he called back.
With a frustrated groan, Hermione raced after Draco. That man really is the bane of my existence. She thought as she caught up to him.
Just as they got to Dumbledore's office and were riding up the staircase she heard him whisper close to her ear,
'And yes Granger, I do like you,"
She never had a chance to reply though as the door had opened and Draco was already walking towards the waiting Dumbledore.