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Chapter 2 : Some things you do for money, some you do for fun.
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Fair warning, again, that the story contains sensitive issues. Also fair warning that this chapter is very short and mostly contains dialogue. Soz
“I'd like to talk about why you left the other day,” Camelia said as I entered her office. It was her idea, me calling her Camelia. I was fine with Dr. Gorner or even Dr. Camelia but she said if I called her by her first name, it made it easier to trust her; to forget she was a doctor and maybe think of her as a friend.
“I'd like to talk about why you tricked me,” I said, just sitting down. She didn't like to waste time, this one. I appreciated that.
“Is it possible you don't want to speak to me because I may be the only one who can help you?” She poised, thinking she had finally figured me out. Or maybe this was another trick. See? How was I meant to trust Camelia when she pulled this kind of crap? I mean, when it really came down to it, she was my doctor. Not my friend.
“I don't want to speak to you because I know you can't help me. Neither can anyone else,” I was telling her the truth. She may have been world renowned, but I knew myself. I wasn't an idiot. I didn't expect any miracles.
“Well, a lot can happen in nine weeks. It took me one session to figure out that you feel disconnected and “scarred”. I'm sure in eighteen more sessions, I can make the opposite true,” she assured me.
“Go on then,” I had nothing to lose, really. If I humoured her, maybe I could get back to work. At least I could get out of the Weasleys' and have some time to myself and maybe finish what I had started.
“Hermione, I don't believe you're disconnected. I simply feel you've had your current connections for far too long with the same exact people and you've grown comfortable and bored, which causes you to no longer derive any pleasure from these relationships. I suggest you forge a new connection. Befriend someone you don't know. Volunteer,” She said it like it was easy. As if she just walked down the street every morning and made a dozen new friends on her way to work.
“That's your solution? Make a friend?” I was beginning to get more than just a little annoyed. Okay, so she was smart enough to trick me into telling her what was wrong. But how was a friend going to change anything? It would take a long time to really forge a connection, what with my trust issues and complete inability to speak to people I didn't know.
“Is there a problem?”
“Camelia, I spent my childhood at home, reading books. I delved into poetry and prose and left the world behind. Even then I was trying to escape the world. I don't like people. People don't like me.”
“Then why complain about feeling disconnected?”
I sat in silence for the remaining twenty minutes, not having an answer to that.
Okay. Yes. She was a brilliant therapist. But did she have to be so annoying?
This time, I didn't even get to go back to the Burrow. Malfoy was stood outside her office, just waiting.
Upon seeing him, I simply scoffed and walked past him. I knew a Ministry car would be waiting. Thankfully, he didn't speak as we got into the car. And thankfully Camelia worked closer to the Volunteer than I lived, so with any luck, the ride would be short.
“How was your session?” He asked once we had sat down in the same corner booth as before.
“Fine. And may I add that it feels like I now have two therapists. You should know I trust her more.”
“What did you two talk about?” He never missed a beat; always just went on to the next question.
“She thinks I'm bored with Harry and Ron. Which I guess is a little true, but I never thought of it that way. It seems harsh. I don't know, she wants me to start a new relationship,” I told him honestly. I knew he was bound by the Ministry to confidentiality and that if any of this came out, he could lose his job. So maybe I trusted him more than I said I did.
“What kind of relationship?”
“Any kind. I could volunteer, make a new friend, I'm sure she'd be fine if I slept with someone.” That moment was an unfortunate one to make eye contact with Draco Malfoy, yet that was the moment I chose. His lips tightened, the way McGonagall's usually did when she was angry.
“I'm flattered, and you know, you're attractive and all, but you should know we have a strictly Administrator/Patient relationship thing going on here,” he said hurriedly. My eyes widened. That was not what I meant at all.
“Get over yourself,” I scoffed. So maybe I didn't hate him as much as I wanted to. That didn't mean I wanted to jump his bones.
“What about... Harry?” he posed the question, even though we had just gone over that point three days ago.
“Hermione, it's only natural. I've been watching a lot of muggle movies lately. The girl always falls for the guy who saves her life.” Well, that was a surprise. I could scarcely imagine Malfoy sitting at home in his suit and tie, watching a movie about damsels in distress.
“Well, that's too bad. Because now my only options are Harry, and you.” This was another unfortunate moment to make eye contact with Draco Malfoy, but it was the moment I chose, this time on purpose. I had been wanting to confront him about it for some time. After all, it was part of the reason I hated him so much.
“You remember?” He asked, after a moment's pause.
“I just need to know. Why don't you ever rub it in my face? You've never even mentioned it, or acted like anything even happened.”
“As far as I'm concerned, it was just a favour among friends.”
“Friends - Can I tell Camelia you said that?”
“Hermione, I won't allow you to cut corners. If you really want to be friends, you can tell Camelia. If you just want to cheat, I won't have any part in it,” He looked tired all of a sudden. As if it exhausted him to be around me. I understood that, though. It was exhausting to be around me. Having to watch what you say, making sure you don't say something to hurt my feelings because God forbid, I'll probably try to kill myself again.
But Malfoy wasn't like that. For some reason, he could just talk to me. As an Administrator, I suppose.
I kind of knew I could trust him, because he saved my life and all, but I still didn't want to. But why not cheat? He was offering himself up to me, and I could sure as hell pretend to be friends.
“No. We can totally be friends.” And there it was. I had said something before completely making my mind up. It was fine, though. Even my mouth knew my cheating plan was the way to go. Why put effort into making a new friend, when Malfoy was throwing his friendship at me?
“Okay. So, friends.”
Once it was agreed upon, I no longer knew what I was doing. It had taken two seconds for me to completely change my mind.
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