AN: I don’t own anything from Harry Potter.
“Greengrass?” Hermione asked sneaking what she hoped looked liked casual glances over at Draco, without looking like she was about to go into a jealous fit over this mystery woman.
“Astoria Greengrass, Daphne Greengrass’s little sister, do you remember her? She was in our year, pureblood and a Slytherin of course.” Pansy said casually looking at where Draco was currently on the dance floor with Astoria. “Apparently she just got back from spending a year in France. You know she’s a very successful high fashion model in the Wizarding World, or so she says.” Pansy continued on as if it was nothing to fret about.
Hermione continued to look on as Astoria leaned in closer to whisper something in Draco’s ear. The closer she looked the more she started to recognize her from pictures in the Daily Prophet modeling dress robes and the like. She also vaguely remembered her from school. She did remember her sister Daphne though; she took her N.E.W.T.S with her. As she recalled she seemed to be all beauty and no brains.
She started to calm down once the song they were dancing to came to an end. She waited almost impatiently for Draco to return back to her, not that Pansy and Blaise were doing a bad job at keeping her company, they were quite enjoyable actually. But she would still feel more comfortable if he were here with them and not over there with that tart on the dance floor.
To her disappointment another song started up and they remained on the dance floor. Again she tried desperately hard not to feel jealous, but she couldn’t help it. Pansy must have sensed she was uneasy about it.
“Don’t worry he’s just being polite, I’m sure his mother put him up to it.”
She just nodded, afraid she might say something horrid if she tried to speak. The champagne she was drinking and the nerves from the party were starting to catch up with her. Causing her stomach to twist uncomfortably. She’d be damned if she got caught getting sick in front of all these people. She asked Pansy where the restrooms were, then politely excused herself, turning down Pansy request to accompany her.
She walked briskly towards the loos, which happened to be located inside the foyer of the manor and focused on breathing evenly. When she entered the ladies washroom, she was relieved to find it empty. She turned on the faucet to the sink and let the water turn cold. She looked at her appearance in the mirror, her hair was a disaster, most likely from broom ride over here and her cheeks were flushed. She ran her hands under the cool water then patted her forehead, cheeks and neck with them which helped ease the nauseous feeling in her stomach. She stood like that for a couple more seconds before turning the tap off.
Once she was feeling a bit better she looked again in the mirror at her reflection and cringed. Great now she looked even worse then she did before. She opened her bag she brought with her to locate her compact to retouch her makeup, which might make help make her look a bit more human. She peered inside and gasped inside it was the letter that was sent to her before her and Draco left her apartment. But she forgotten all about it after she stuffed it in her back right before they apparated to Draco’s flat. She looked around the restroom interior, then towards the door. She knew she was alone, but she wasn’t quite sure if it was a wise idea to read the letter here or wait until she was completely alone. Decisions, decisions…Oh be done with it, she thought as she ripped open the letter and held her breath as she began to read.
I’ve kept my word and continued to research this curse you and Mr. Malfoy are still currently under. I know some wizards back in Scotland who are familiar with ancient curses and the darker arts. And as it turns out they have some very helpful information regarding your delicate conditions. I should first mention I’ve discovered some good news, but unfortunately I have bad news as well.
Hermione’s heart was racing and her palms were sweating as she continued to read.
The good news is that there is an alternative way to break the curse, but I must warn you, it comes with consequences. It’s rather simple actually, you must decided whether or not you want your magic back or if Mr. Malfoy wants to get his true human form back and not continue to have to convert to his feline self during the hours of the day. And beware I used the work ‘or’ because with this spell you can’t have both, it’s either one or the other. You must choose whose life you want to make complete once again.
And as I said before this counter-curse has consequences. Not only will the other person not get their life back to normal but instead it will change drastically. For example, if you decided to choose yourself to return your magic back to its full capacity then Mr. Malfoy will continue to stay a cat. But not in the way he has been this past week. I’m afraid he will become a cat permanently, never to change back to his human form at the stroke of midnight. And he will no longer be the Draco Malfoy you have come to know. His body and his mind will be completely taken over by his feline instincts.
Oh my god no, she thought. She couldn’t choose that kind of fate for him, that wasn’t fair in the least. Her stomach dropped and the sickness returned but this time for a completely different reason. She was almost too afraid to continue reading to find out what would happen to her if she choose Draco’s happiness over hers.
And as for yourself, if you choose Mr. Malfoy’s life over yours then you will be stripped of all magical ability and sight permanently. In other words you will become a muggle permanently and everything you’ve ever known in the magical world will disappear and it would be as if it were all a distant dream and all of your memories and those you’ve met over the years associated with the magical world would be altered. Yours replaced with muggle memories as if you’ve always live a normal muggle life. And with the others, their memories of you will be erased, as if you never existed in the first place. And yes, that includes Mr. and Mrs. Potter, Mr. Weasely, and Draco as well, as well as everyone else you’ve encountered once you entered the magical world back when you were eleven years old.
Hermione couldn’t breathe and she was shaking all over, this couldn’t be true, it was a no win situation no matter who she choose, the other will still suffer from it. There was still more to the letter. McGonagall did say this was an alternative solution to what was apparently already in progress, so therefore they didn’t have to use this option to break the curse, it was just a last resort type of thing. Okay, that made her feel a little better. She continued to read the rest.
Once you have made your decision, you must drink a potion that I will be sending to you shortly in the next day or two. You must drink it and afterwards you need to say the words ‘magikal, amingus, reverso’ three times. And yes if you’re wondering you are allowed to inform Mr. Malfoy of this counter-curse. Since in the past I’ve made you two keep certain things from each other regarding the curse. But you cannot allow him to make the decision for you. No matter what it is, it’s your decision to make since it was from your wand that casted the curse in the first place. Now I must reveal the bad news.
How can this get possibly worse, she thought and braced herself for what was to come as she read on.
Unfortunately there is a time limit to all of this. One I was not aware existed until just recently. You have exactly two more days to either make your decision or let the rest play forth, until midnight of the second day, which would be this Monday. I’ve also been informed that the original counter-curse (the rest that Mr. Malfoy is aware of) will only work if the souls and hearts are absolutely pure with the truth. But even that might not be enough to break the curse completely as I previously thought. Which means it would be a wiser choice to drink the potion and make a decision. Because if you and Mr. Malfoy are not pure of heart and soul by Monday at midnight the curse will take on full affect and change both of your lives for the worse permanently.
I’m sure by now your noticing more and more loss of your magical abilities as the days go on. Be very careful at what you try to do or what you’ll be exposed to. I must warn you do not try to use your wand at any cost and whatever you do, do not try to apparaite. You’re body is losing its ability to guard itself against magical influences and it would put yourself in grave danger if you try to apparaite. And you must know by now your body will not be able to heal and recover from magical potions and remedies. So please avoid that at all cost. I know this is a lot to take in and I’m sorry I couldn’t tell any of this to you in person. I will do my best to meet with you before the time is up. Please do not lose fate in this or give up altogether. I still have every bit of faith that this will all work out in the end. And feel free to ask any questions you have regarding this letter.
With Best Wishes,
Professor Minerva McGonagall
She stared at the letter for a few more minutes, wishing she would discover a hidden message in there saying this was all a big joke. But she didn’t see anything. She slowly looked at her reflection in the mirror. She was numb, that’s what she was feeling and thinking, just numb. She had two more days to make the biggest decision of her life, or it would end in misery for both of them. Tears welled up in her eyes. This was all her fault, how could she have been so stupid, it was never meant to happen.
The tears began to fall and she gave up trying to stop them. How could this possible all work out in the end? And what did she mean ‘our hearts and souls had to be pure?’ She so desperately wanted to know what McGonagall told Draco not a few nights ago, which now seemed like forever ago since she came to visit her tiny apartment. She wanted to know what the last piece of the puzzle was. That way she could help break the curse, because two heads were better then one. But if he told her, after he was specifically told not to tell her anything, would that still affect the outcome of the curse? Or will it have no affect at all?
She spent a few more minutes crying when she remembered where she was and who was probably waiting for her and wondering what was taking her so long. She rinsed her face off and reapplied her makeup, which still did no good, she still looked puffy and sploshy no matter what she tried to do.
After taking a few more calming breaths, she stuffed the letter back into the envelope and opened the door of the loo. She was trying to put the letter back into her bag when she ended up walking straight into someone. With a start she jumped back and started to apologize for not looking where she was going. When that someone turned around to face her.
She immediately relax, “Oh its you,” she said to Draco.
“Are you okay, Pansy came and told me you ran in here a few minutes ago and she thought you might be ill? I was about to go in there to check on you before you came bursting out the door.”
“I’m better now. I guess I just had to much champagne and little to no food. I’m fine now. Really.” She tried to smile.
He came up to her to rest his palm against her cheek, while his thumb made soothing strokes along her skin. “Have you been crying?” he asked softly, concern showing in his eyes.
She gently pushed his hand away and looked out towards the party outside, not wanting to look him in the eye. “No,” she lied. “I just splashed some cold water on my face, which helped ease my stomach. I think the heat was also getting to me. But I’m fine now so don’t worry about it.” She hated lying to him and she needed to tell him the truth, but she didn’t want to do it here.
“Do you want to go home, we can leave now if your still not feeling well.” He asked.
“No, don’t be silly we just got here and I’m not sure your mother would appreciate us, first arriving late and then leaving thirty minutes later.”
He grimaced, “Yeah your probably right, but the second you start feeling bad, you tell me and we’ll leave.”
“Okay deal, but really I’m fine.”
They started walking back towards the party. But instead of going to the party he grabbed her hand and started tugging her towards the opposite side of the house. She was about to ask where they were going, when he pulled her around the corner and she saw it.
“Oh wow,” she gasped.
Before them was what looked like acres upon acres of beautiful gardens. It looked just like what she imagined when reading the muggle book, The Secret Garden. It was breathtaking. There were benches laid out through out the landscape, small pebble paths made walkways into the garden. Fireflies mixed with butterflies where flying about in every which way. Towards the right was a tree swing, one she used to have back when she was a child, in the middle was a small gazebo that was lit with what looked like thousand of fairy lights.
“Its beautiful, is it enchanted?” she asked Draco, because she couldn’t believe something this magnificent was done without magic.
“No, not that I know of. She did this all by her hands, at least the garden part. After my parents separated she needed something to help ease all her frustrations.” He said as they walked up along the pebble pathways, hand in hand.
But something that he said made her stop, “Wait, did you say your parents are separated?”
“Uh huh, they separated about three years ago, after the war. It was very private, no one knows about it and they want to keep it that way. So when public functions come about they show up together and act as though their still married, which I guess legally they still are.”
“But why? If they’re that unhappy with one another, why don’t they just get a divorce and be done with it?”
“Because my father is all about image and if they get divorced it will make him look bad or so he thinks.”
“But what if your mother meets someone and wants to get married again?”
He smiled at her, “Do you know something I don’t?”
“What? No, I was just curious. It doesn’t seem fair though.”
“Well I assume that when and if that happens, it will be worked out then. But for now I think they’re quite like their arrangement. He gets to go what he wants and my mother gets to keep the Malfoy name and money, as well as stay in the same social groups and attend big fancy parties and galas.”
“Hmm, and no one knows about this at all?”
“Nope, not even Pansy or Blaise knows about it.”
“Really? So why did you tell me?”
He shrugged and gave her had a squeeze, “Because I trust you.” He told her simply.
“You trust me, but you don’t trust Pansy or your best mate Blaise?” She teased him.
“Nah, I trust them, but it’s sort of a different trust. If you didn’t know, Pansy is somewhat of a gossip. She would probably say something to someone without realizing she said anything in the first place.”
“Ah I see,” She laughed.
They walked hand in hand until they reached the gazebo. Even though they were away from the party they could still hear the music. A slow song picked up, one she actually recognized as a muggle song. Draco moved in front of her and held out his hand.
“Shall we?” he was asking her to dance.
She smiled, “Really?” Stepping closer towards him.
He took her hand and pulled her up against his body, wrapping his other arm around her waist, “Oh why not?” he teased.
She went willingly into his embrace and wrapped her arms around his neck as though they’d never wrapped around anyone else’s and they began to slowly sway to the music. She remembered hearing this song a while back on the radio. Even though they were far away from the party, they could still hear the music clearly.
Lights twinkled all around them with a magical promise and the scent of roses in the air. There was nothing but her and Draco. There was nothing but his lips resting against the top of her head, his heart pounding a steady rhythm against her ear.
They danced in silence. It was almost too perfect, dancing under the moonlight in a gazebo in the middle of a beautiful garden, with fireflies dancing along with them. She didn’t want to speak; afraid she would ruin the moment. So instead she closed her eyes and focused on the music and his heart beat she could feel against his chest.
How was it, that a million awful things could be plaguing her mind, but one touch from him and it all just disappears in an instant and the only thing she could think about was him and her, together in this moment and nothing else.
She made her decision, well she made it as soon as she finished reading the letter. And regardless of what she decided, no matter what she was going to lose him in the end and they would no longer have perfect moments like this. She buried her face in his shoulder and willed herself not to start crying again. As she pressed herself closer to him and held on tighter, never wanting to let go.
If I’m not made for you then why does
My heart tell me that I am.
The lyrics drifted all around them, saying exactly what she couldn’t say out loud. She couldn’t take it anymore. She needed to tell him now before she chickened out and it would be too late. She tilted her head back and blue eyes met brown. His arms hardened around her, one hand splayed across her waist, the other between her bare shoulder blades, evoking so many emotions deep within her..
“Draco, I need to tell you something,” she said breaking their perfect moment.
“Shh love, not yet.” He whispered. His eyes grew smoky, glazing over in an all consuming look, she would never forget. No one had ever looked at her like this, with so many different levels of intimate emotion she couldn’t separate one from the other. She soon started to realize that she didn’t want to separate anything when Draco laid his mouth on hers.
Cause I love you,
Whether its wrong or right
Draco’s mouth moved against hers in a deliciously heartbreakingly slow dance, teasing her lips, skimming them with small hints of promise. Neither of them could keep from deepening the kiss melting them both from the inside out. A moan of the pleasure escaped her lips and slipped into his mouth as she clung to him, never wanting to leave the shelter of his arms Tears welled up in her eyes, not from what she was about to tell him, but from the sheer passion and intensity in the kiss they shared. Which scared and confused her all at the same time. They finally ended the kiss long after the song ended.
Draco rested his forehead against hers and kept his arms around her body. “I have something I want to tell you too,” he said breathlessly.
“Okay you go first.” Damn-it, she was already chickening out on this.
“No, ladies first,” he said smiling down at her, still not letting go.
“I’m afraid what I had to say isn’t good news.” She said breaking eye contact with him.
He pulled away slightly. “Did something happen? Are you hurt or are you feeling sick again?” he asked feeling her forehead for a fever.
She pulled his hand away. “No, I’m not hurt or sick. But um, did you happen to receive any letters recently?”
“No did you hear back from McGonagall?”
She nodded, “I got a letter earlier today but in all the chaos in getting her I completely forgot about it and when I was in the loo. I found it and read it.”
“What did she have to say?”
She started to pace, “Well she had some good news and bad news. The bad news is that we only have two more days to break the curse and if we can’t find away to break it by Monday by midnight, then you’ll turn into a cat permanently and I’ll become a muggle permanently.” She looked over at him to gauge his reaction to this.
“And what’s the good news?” he asked rather calmly.
She took a deep breath, “The good news is that she talked to some wizards who are familiar with ancient curses and they found a potion that will change you back into your normal human self again. But I can’t take it until that Monday at the stroke of midnight.”
“Wait, why do you have to drink the potion?” he asked.
“Because it was from my wand that the curse was casted, so therefore I have to be the one to take the potion in order to break the curse.”
“And she said this will definitely break the curse. And I will no longer have to change into a cat during the day while you have to feed me luke warm chicken and drink water from a bowl. I’ll be just as normal and human as I was before the curse was casted?”
She nodded, “Yep that’s what she said.”
He swooped her up in his arms and started spinning her around while he laughed and cheered, than sat her down to kiss her soundly. “Ph this is the best news I’ve heard in a long time. Thank you.”
She tried her best to smile and look as happy as he was, but apparently she wasn’t doing a very good job about it.
“What’s wrong? You looked worried.”
“I’m fine, I’m just worried about the deadline and just trying to imagine what would happen if we didn’t fine out in time. But I am happy, really. I guess I’m still trying to take everything in still. You know me, I over analyze everything.”
He grabbed her hands, “There’s nothing to worry about, not anymore. We’re going to get our lives back and everything will be perfect.” He said kissing her forehead, then her lips.
“Well if it isn’t Ms. Granger. How lovely it is to see you again.”
They both froze, than slowly turned towards the speaker. “Hello father. I was wondering when I would be running into you this evening.” Draco said as he stepped in front of her in a protective manner shielding her with his body. “What do you want?”
“I just wanted to welcome Ms. Granger to our home and ask if she would accompany me with the next dance.”
“No you may not. Whatever it is you have to say to her, you can say in front of me.” Draco said taking her hand in his.
“My, my a little possessive are we? You were never one to share when you were younger. I taught you well. All I’m asking is for one dance. I promise no harm will be done to her.”
She didn’t believe one word he was saying and the way Draco was gripping her hand, he didn’t either. Something in Lucius’s hand caught her eye. It was an envelope, much similar to the one McGonagall sent her. Actually it looked exactly like the one she sent her. Oh no, she quickly looked down into her purse. The letter wasn’t in there, it must have fallen out when she bumped into Draco coming out of the loo. Panic made her heart race. He knew, he must have read it and he knew everything. She looked up to meet his gaze, the look in his eye told her that she knew he knew. And Draco couldn’t know the full contents of that letter. She needed to act fast.
“Draco, it’s fine really. Its one dance. He wouldn’t be able to do anything here anyway with all these people around.”
“I don’t trust him.”
“I’ll be fine,” she was really beginning to hate that expression since she was anything but fine. “You can trust me.”
“Fine one dance, if he tries anything I give you my permission to hit him. And if your not back her after the song is finished then I’m coming in to get you.” He whispered to her.
“Deal.” She squeezed his hand reassuringly before he gave her a brief kiss on the lips.
“Charming,” Lucius said behind them.
She cringed, it was now or never to face him and find out exactly how much he knew. She reluctantly walked over to him and whispered low so only he would hear.
“Let’s just get this over with.”
“My pleasure,” he said while looking down at her.
He looked repulsed by just standing next to her. He grimaced and held out the crook of his arm to her. She eyed it suspiciously before she slipped her hand in, but not quite fully resting her hand on his arm just incase she needed to quickly retreat.
As they started walking towards the party she looked over her shoulder at Draco who was left leaning against the side of the gazebo with a scowl on his face. She game a small weak smile to hopefully reassure him that there was nothing to worry about.
The walk from the garden to the party felt like the longest walk of her life. Lucius had her letter, but she wasn’t sure whether or not he read it and she didn’t want to out right ask him if he did or not for fear she would accidently give away her and Draco’s secret. But if he did know and did read it, why wasn’t he saying anything?
“It’s funny this morning I received a letter addressed to Mr. Malfoy. When I opened it to find out what it was about I was rather surprised to find out that it was from your old school teacher McGonagall and also the fact that it wasn’t addressed to me at all but to Draco. The bloody bird must have been to stupid to know which Mr. Malfoy was which. And well anyway, curiosity got the best of me so I read on. At first I thought it was some sort of prank, because how could any son of mine be daft enough to get cursed into a cat by the likes of you.” He sneered at her. “But then she went on to talk about an alternative solution to the curse and to warn him that there was very little time left to complete his task. I’ll be honest, I was quite disturbed to find all of this out and I was planning on confronting him about it here when I just happen to come across your letter and as it turns out yours was just full of interesting detail.”
“It’s illegal to read someone else mail.” She said yanking her hand free.
“Just so we’re clear. I might not be on good terms with the Ministry, but I still have friends in high places and one word from me and you’ll be sent to Azkaban in a heartbeat and no one would think twice. Because turning someone against their will especially in a curse of this magnitude is illegal in the eyes of the Ministry accident or not. And I’m sure they would be very interested in finding out that little Miss Muggle Born Granger isn’t so perfect and smart after all.”
She tried not to flinch at his threat, they were at the party now and he grabbed her hand rather painfully and shoved it back through his arm with a fake smile upon his face and led her to the dance floor. That slimly bastard thought he could fool everyone.
She tried to act casual because to her dismay she could see and feel everyone watching them.
“And also I know about your little dilemma as well with the loss of your magic, so I wouldn’t try anything if I were you because you’ll just end up making a fool of yourself.” He said in only a voice she could hear.
The hand that was holding hers was crushing her fingers and the other biting into her waist in a painful reminder that he was the one in control.
“So let me just give it to you straight. By Monday at midnight your going to take that potion and you are going to give Draco’s life back and you’ll shrink away and disappear forever to live your miserable muggle life leaving my son and family in peace.”
“If you read correctly it said no one can influence my decision.”
“Then I trust you make the right decision and if you don’t then I’ll hunt you down and see that you get punished, that is if the Ministry doesn’t get to you first.” He said through clenched teeth.
“Noted.” She said flinching at his painful grip on her hand.
“And your going to drink that potion instead of relying on that rubbish McGonagall was going on about. About true love breaking the curse. Because no son of mine will ever love a mudblood like you, no matter how many times you spread your legs for him.”
She tried to jerk her hand free from his grip with every intention of slapping him, but he held on tight. “What are you talking about, true love breaking the curse?”
“Ah, you didn’t know? Hmm perhaps I shouldn’t have mentioned that part to you.” He said looking anything but innocent. “Draco has to love your with all his heart and soul or so McGonagall said but it has to be real otherwise it won’t work. And I’m telling you now so you don’t get your hopes up, that he will never love you. He might tell you you’re a great shag, kiss you and whisper sweet nothings in your ear. But its not real, he will never love you, not now, magic or not and especially not after, when you turn into a muggle once and for all. He’s a Malfoy and a Slytherin, we’re known for lying and deceiving, it’s in our nature to tell people what they want to hear in order for us to benefit in the end.”
“So if you’re known for lying and deceiving, how am I supposed to believe anything you’re telling me right now?”
“Let’s just say you should listen to me at least this once. And don’t forget come Monday you have a very important decision to make. Oh and do be careful out there, you don’t want to come across the wrong people, especially now that you no longer have any means to defend yourself. Now do enjoy the rest of the party while you still can.” And with that he walked away leaving her speechless on the dance floor.
She walked off avoiding everyone’s curious glances in her direction. She scanned the area for Draco; she finally spotted him in the far corner talking with his mum and a few other people. She needed time to think, but she wasn’t going to go hide away in the loo like last time, but she still wanted to be alone. She learned too many things tonight and it was overwhelming. Lucius Malfoy knowing about the curse wasn’t a good thing at all especially since he kept threatening her about throwing her in prison.
And what was he talking about true love breaking the curse? Was it true or was he just trying to screw her over? Was that really the missing piece that Draco had to complete? Was that what McGonagall was talking about with having your heart and soul be pure and true otherwise the curse wouldn’t break? She didn’t want to believe what he said about Draco just using her, she didn’t want to believe that he could be that cruel after everything they’ve shared and been through together. It was making all of her insecurities come back. Would her blood status really prevent them from being together fully? Would she be holding him back from what he truly wanted to be?
Ugh, she was getting a headache, and she was definitely ready to leave right about now.
“Well if it isn’t Mudblood Granger,” someone said from off to her side.
Great, just what she needed. Someone else to tell her she was worthless and a waste of Draco’s time, she thought as she turned to the speaker of the voice. And of course it was Astoria Greengrass and a gang of girls who she assumed were her friends, perfect just what she needed to top off the night.
“And you are?” She asked even though she knew who she was; she couldn’t help taunt her and was tired of pretending to be nice.
“Astoria Greengrass,” she sneered as if she expected her to automatically know who she was. “Perhaps you’ve seen pictures of me in the Daily Prophet? I’m a model you know.”
“Really? I had no idea, actually now that I think about it, weren’t you the cover model for the potions that helps relieve gas and constipation?”
Astoria turned red with anger, “No, but rumor has it your Draco’s girlfriend.”
“Yeah that’s right.” She answered, her patience running thin.
“I don’t know why he would be interested in you, you’re a mudblood.” Astoria stated.
“Well you’ll just have to ask him about that.” She said as she started to walk away.
“You’ll never fit in, into his world. Do you really think he wants to spend the rest of his life with you?”
She stopped and turned around, “You know you’re not the first person to tell me that today. And I’m well aware that I don’t fit in here because of people like you telling me I don’t. And yet he still for whatever reason keeps coming back to me. I’ve given him every chance for him to walk away and yet he hasn’t.”
“Well I’m sure he’s just using you until something better comes along.”
“And by something better, do you mean you?”
“Why yes, that’s exactly what I mean. Wow you really are smart.” Astoria mocked.
“And wow you fit the perfect description of a gold digging whore whose too dumb to find an actual career, so instead you seek out men for their money, so you’ll never have to lift a finger.”
“How dare you talk to me like that you filthy mudblood. I’m the perfect woman for him; before you know he’ll be in my arms and not yours, so I would watch out carefully if I were you. And by then he’ll realize your nothing but filth, because you’re a mudblood and nothing will ever change that. I mean look at his family, do you really think they will ever accept you? Right now to them you’re just a temporary inconvenience. You’ll never live up to the Malfoy standards; you can’t even give him pureblood children.”
For the most part she was tuning her out because this was all stuff she hasn’t heard before but for some reason that last part struck a nerve. Not that it mattered, by Monday she would never see Draco or these people ever again.
“We’ll see, now if you’ll excuse me I’ll be leaving.”
“You’ll see in the end he will choose me, he’ll soon realize that he’s falling head over heels for me.” Astoria said.
She was just turning around when Astoria tipped her glass full of red wine all over the front of her dress.
“Oops, you really shouldn’t wear white, it stains quite easily.” Astoria said smugly as she walked off followed by her posse of giggling girls.
She stared down at her dress, completely speechless. She grabbed a napkin off a near by table and started dabbing at it, but it just made it look worse. She looked around frantically for Draco, but he was no where to be seen. She couldn’t even use a cleaning charm to fix this and she certainly couldn’t ask someone else to use one for her with out looking suspicious.
Damn-it, she thought as she headed back to the girls washroom for the second time that night. She was not going to cry, she wasn’t going to let what Astoria said get to her, even though she was right about almost everything. If Draco was smart he would realize that she wasn’t right for him. One day she wouldn’t be enough to truly fulfill his life.
A tear slipped down her cheek. She angrily swept it away with her hand as she marched into the restroom. The stain was worst then she thought, it started at the top of her dress and spread out all over her chest and torso then ran down all the way to the hem. The deep red color standing out against the white of her dress. She grabbed a hand towel and wet it down with water and started to clean her neck and arms where the wine splashed onto her skin then attempted to clean her dress.
After five minute of useless scrubbing she gave up. She couldn’t do anything else except go back out there with her head held high. She was not going to give Astoria the satisfaction by showing how upset she was over this. She was going to find Draco and accept his offer to finally leave this party. She’s already had way too much fun for one night she didn’t think she could handle anymore.
She walked out of the loo, stained dress and all and walked out to the party. She was coming out the door when a giggle caught her attention; she glanced over to the right and caught a glimpse of white blonde hair. Draco, she thought and walked towards him only to stop short when she found him with his hands and lips all over Astoria in a small dark corner near the entrance to the manor.
“Draco?” she gasped, shocked and hurt, confused and pissed off all at the same time.
His lips broke free from Astoria’s mouth as he looked over at her. “What are you doing here?” he sneered.
“I came looking for you. What are you doing?” she stuttered.
“Well you found me, now bugger off, we were in the middle of something.” Draco said as Astoria giggled.
She turned to Astoria, “What the bloody hell did you do to him?” she practically shouted.
“Me? What makes you think I did anything to him, he came to me. Just like I said he would. I told you to watch out for him, in the end its going to be me he decides to be with and not you.”
“Mmm, that’s right baby whatever you say.” Draco mumbled into Astoria’s neck completely ignoring her standing there.
All she could do was glare at him. “Draco I’m ready to leave now.” She sneered.
He turned towards her again, “Then leave, no ones stopping you.” He said before he went back to nibbling along Astoria’s neck.
“Draco what is wrong with you, why are you acting like this?”
He sighed and pulled away. “Because I want her instead, can’t you get that through that thick head of yours?”
“That’s right leave; you’re not welcome here anymore.” Astoria said smirking at her.
She gave Draco one more pleading looked which he ignored before she turned and walked off leaving them behind. She pulled out her cell phone and tried to dial Ginny’s number but it was nearly impossible to do while she was running and tears were blurring her vision. Ginny answered on the first ring.
“Hey Hermione, everything okay?”
She burst out into hot heavy tears, “No its not.” She managed to answer between sobs.
“Where are you?”
“Malfoy Manor,” she was shaking all over and she couldn’t breathe she was crying so hard.
“I’ll be there in two seconds, meet me outside the gate.”
She dialed off and tried to make it to the gate as fast as she could, unfortunately someone stopped her.
“Hermione what’s wrong?” Pansy asked looking concerned.
“Nothing I’m fine, I’m just leaving.” She hiccupped.
“Yeah, nothing my fat pregnant ass, was it Draco? Did he do something to you? Or did his father do or say something to make you so upset? And what the hell happened to your dress?”
“All of the above, plus Astoria, now if you’ll excuse me Ginny’s waiting for me to take me home.” She ran off despite Pansy’s attempts to stop her and let her help whatever it was that was upsetting her.
When she got to the gate she almost collapsed with relief that Ginny was there waiting for her, which only caused her to burst out into more tears.
Ginny gave her a once over at her appearance and muttered, “I’ll kill him.”
Then took her hand and apparated away. The last thing she remembered was collapsing on a hard surface in agonizing pain before the world went black.
AN: the song and lyrics are from the song "If You're Not The One' by Daniel Bedingfield.
Okay so please, please don't hate me. I know there is a lot of drama in this chapter and I wanted to make sure I got it all in so I wouldn't have to make another chapter of a continuation of the birthday party. So what do you think of the letter? Do you think she's making the right decision by choosing Draco's happiness over hers? Do you think she'll change her mind now that she's caught him with another woman? The scene with her and Lucius I had all planned out before I wrote this chapter but once I started writing it I couldn't remember how I wanted it to play out so its kind of weak the same with Hermione's interaction with Astoria, so I'm sorry for that. And what do you think is wrong with Draco? Why would suddenly start making out with Astoria? I mean how can it be possible when what he and Hermione have together is almost perfect. So how could he do something stupid like that?...a love potion perhaps? ;) I guess you'll have to find out officially in the next chapter. But don't worry this story does have a happy ending and this is just a minor hiccup in their almost perfect romance. So again please don't hate me for this chapter. And please continue to keep reading and reviewing!!