Chapter 10 : Funny how I believed everything was so easy
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The hours ticked by and she still hadn’t left. Her girly, high pitched giggle kept penetrating my door yet I never heard a laugh that could be Draco’s accompany hers which was strangely comforting. My quill kept moving as I robotically went through my homework, my mind elsewhere, in places it shouldn’t have been. I didn’t know why her presence frustrated me so much; we could have anyone we wanted in our common room so it wasn’t as if he was breaking any rules.
“You’re jealous Hermione Jean Granger. Jealous that he’s with her instead of talking to you.” Part of my brain said to me.
“I’m not jealous, I’m not jealous, I could never be jealous of her... being with him... as if I’d jealous...” I argued back out loud. Great, now I was talking to myself, I sighed, the thought stuck in my head. I wasn’t jealous was I? How could I be? It was pureblood, stuck up Draco Malfoy with your stereotypical dumb blonde bombshell more commonly known as Astoria Greengrass. They weren’t doing anything and even if they were, it was hardly my business except for the fact her high pitched squeal was so darn annoying. If she wasn’t gone by curfew, which was in twenty three minutes and fifty seven seconds time to be exact, there would be detention and deduction of as many points from Slytherin as I could justify. I let the minutes tick by and with three to go I wandered down the stairs, planning excuses in my head as to why I was disturbing them. ‘I needed a drink’, ‘I needed to use the bathroom’ and a few other exceptionally lame ones crossed my mind when what I really wanted to say to Astoria was ‘get the hell out’. I was not quite prepared for what I was to encounter when I walked done the stairs.
Astoria was seated opposite to Draco as they sat around our small table by the fire. Her face was illuminated by the fire; her pale skin contrasted her dark hair and the light highlighted her high and delicate cheekbones. I felt three sets of eyes focused on me when I coughed to reveal my presence to the sombre group, I had not accounted for Astoria’s elder sister Daphne in my equation.
“What do you want Mudblood?” Astoria snapped. “We’re in the middle of something, if you don’t mind.”
“Well actually Greengrass, I do mind, you happen to be in my common room and curfew starts in exactly one minute and forty-seven seconds, so you might want to hurry yourself along.” I retorted. “Also, that’ll be twenty points from Slytherin for insulting the Head Girl. If you’d care to hang around for another minute or so, I’ll give you a detention for being out of bed after curfew too if you’d like.”
She looked at me with the dirtiest possible look she could muster up, almost daring me to penalise her more when Daphne spoke, her voice calm and a vivid contrast to her sister.
“Just let it go Astoria, you forget your place.”
“I’m not the one who’s forgotten, it’s the jumped up mudblood who thinks she’s better than us, her superior’s with blood purer than water.”
“Stop Astoria, go back to your dormitory, we’ll continue our discussion with Draco at a much more appropriate time .” Daphne’s tone was firm and her younger sister complied but her distain was obvious as she stormed out and Daphne turned to me as she spoke.
“I am sorry for my sister’s rudeness, she has yet to adjust to our changing world, I would like to believe it is because she is young and head strong not but in reality, she is not a child anymore, there’s only two years between us but it has always felt like much more. She is used to being the girl that everyone wishes they were, rich and beautiful, but that girl everyone wants to be now has changed, they would much rather be intelligent than beautiful and love rather than money.”
I was a little shocked at the words I was hearing from Daphne, when I had seen her next to Draco, I had expected a snobbier version of Astoria but it was as if they were polar opposites.
“I’ll speak with you later Draco, without Astoria. Perhaps we will have another conversation sometime Hermione, without the un-pleasantries that preceded this one.”
“I’d like that” I replied with a little smile. “Slytherins and Gryffindors never seem to be able to get along, maybe we could change that.” ‘
“If anyone would be capable of creating inter-house unity it would be you Hermione Granger.” Daphne added before exiting through the portrait hole.
I smiled as the portrait closed behind her, there was so much even I didn’t know nor expect. I took two steps towards the kitchen before Draco’s voice stopped me.
“Couldn’t help yourself could you?”
“I have no idea what you mean” I replied, taking another step and I felt a hand on my shoulder, he spun me around so I was facing him.
“It was meant to be a private conversation.” His tone was cold but he didn’t seem angry.
“I didn’t hear anything. Why would I have been listening anyway?”
“Because you’re too curious for your own good Hermione, surely even you are aware of that fact.”
“I have no idea what you are talking about. I merely came downstairs to get a drink of water before bed and I was just reminding them of the rules.”
“And you’ve never broken that particular rule?”
“Not without just cause” I replied with a smile.
“And how do you know that they didn’t have just cause to be up here speaking with me?”
“We were fighting Voldermort.” He flinched as I said the name. “And I don’t know, I’m assuming it was just a friendly chat between sisters and an old friend.”
“You assume too much.”
“Well I don’t know the truth, you could enlighten me?”
“It’s none of your business Granger.” He was starting to get angry now. “You weren’t part of the conversation, you do not need to know what was discussed.”
“Whoa, I’m sorry” I said, holding my hands up in surrender. “I was just trying to help.”
“Well I don’t need your help for this.” He said with a hiss and stalked off. I pushed the whole conversation out of my head, he’d been right, I was too curious for my own good but none of this was going to stop me. I wanted to know what Astoria had said to get Draco worked up, I continued my original plan and entered the kitchen, fetching a glass from the shelf and filling it with water. I then turned my back to the sink and leant against it, the coolness of the glass sending shivers through my body. I let my thoughts settle before draining the glass and walking back up to my bedroom. I removed my jumper and snuggled down under the blankets. I felt so safe and secure under the blankets, it was my own world, one the bogey monster or other dark. I didn’t need friends in my own world like I needed them in reality and whenever Draco was hating on me I had none. For anybody with an imagination their dreams were either the safest, happiest place to be at night or the worst, darkest place that could possibly be created. I closed my eyes thinking of Ron and Harry, ‘I’m nothing without you’ I whispered as their faces filled my head whilst I hugged my pillow as if hanging on for dear life and fell into a restless sleep.
The next morning
I awoke late the next morning feeling more tired than I had when I had fallen asleep the night before. I looked at the clock on the wall and knew that I had missed breakfast and if I didn’t hurry I’d be late for my first class which was Charms. I threw on the first set of robes I could find, my hair was a mess but when was it not? So I pushed it up into a very messy bun but at least now it was out of my face. I shoved my books into my bag, a few pieces of parchment and my favourite quills. I buckled my bag shut before rushing out the door. I was almost out the portrait when I heard someone call my name.
“I noticed you weren’t at breakfast, so I grabbed you some toast.” Draco was standing at the bottom of stairs to his bedroom, he pointed to a small stack wrapped in a green serviette.
“Thank you” I replied, my stomach giving way to its hunger and growling. I walked over to the table without looking at Draco again until I was at the table where he was inches away from my face.
“I wanted to apologize for my attitude last night” He breathed.
“It’s not your fault you got angry, I shouldn’t have asked; it was none of my business.”
“No” I said, putting a finger to his lips. “You don’t have to tell me now. Later, or we’ll be late for charms.”
“Never one to skip a class are you Hermione?”
“Now why would I want to do that exactly?”
“The sheer thrill of breaking the rules.”
“I think I’ve done enough rule breaking to last me a lifetime”
“But you haven’t broken them all, why stop now?”
“Can you imagine me, the Gryffindor bookworm, Hermione Granger, top of the year, skipping class? Because I can’t.”
“Actually yes I can and I intend to see it before the year is out.”
“How exactly do you think you can make me skip class?”
“Oh I have my ways” He said with a smirk.
“Well your ways may work on the Slytherins but I assure you I’m a lot more intelligent than them so you’ll have to think of new ones because they will not work on me.”
“Oh really? Would you like me to try them out to see if they won’t work first?”
“No thank you, now we really are going to be late for Charms if we don’t leave now” I retorted and continued to walk out the door, toast in hand, leaving Draco alone in the common room. A few seconds later I heard footsteps running to catch up to me.
“You need to relax Hermione” He said when he caught up, a little short of breath.
“What are you talking about? I am relaxed.” I replied and turned down the corridor. He put his hands on my shoulders and started rubbing them.
“You didn’t sleep well last night did you?” He whispered in my ear and I shook my head in response, also quickly checking out the corridor to make sure we were alone.
“What are you doing?” I whispered.
“Massaging your shoulders, doesn’t it feel good?”
“It feels fine, but Draco, someone could see us and assume something”
“Assume something? Like what?” He replied, trying to sound innocent but failing quite epically.
“I don’t know Draco, that we’re friends and by our relative closeness even something more than that” I hissed.
“I don’t see the problem”
“Are you insane?”
“You’ve asked me this before.”
“That’s beside the point Draco Malfoy and you know it.”
“Then what is the point?”
“Do you want them to assume something?”
“If they’re assuming we’re together or even just friends then it means that they’re willing to believe that I’ve changed.”
“So basically you’re using me?”
“No, I wouldn’t do that.”
“Then what would you call it?”
“This.” He replied as he walked round in front of me and put his cool hands on my warm cheeks and kissed me. It was soft; it was gentle and completely unexpected. It was a kiss that girls only dreamt of and my reaction was purely reflex as I pushed away from him and slapped him. The look of pure shock on his face reflected exactly what I was feeling.
“I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m so sorry.” I said and I stepped towards him to check if he was okay. “You surprised me, that’s all, I’m really sorry.”
“I guessed I kind of deserved that then” He replied with a bit of a smirk.
“Let’s just forget this happened and go to Charms” These words, I realised after, were my best choice of words as he looked pained as he nodded and walked in silence next to me. Little did he know that forgetting that kiss was one thing I don’t think I could ever do.
Thanks for reading!!
My sincere apologises that this has taken over a month to write but I'm on holidays for another week so I hope to make up for it by posting another chapter soon.
I've been so very busy and my imagination has gone walkies so hopefully this chapter wasn't too horrible but let me know if it was :)
Again, thanks so much for reading. :D
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