Chapter 13 : Angry
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Chapter 13 – Angry
Hermione felt rather content. There were no visible drawbacks from her coma anymore and she sat with Draco in a fancy restaurant’s booth waiting for Harry and Ginny. They had both been quite surprised about the urgent invitation but Draco seemed to be as much at a loss as she was because of this urgency.
After Harry had called the other day, he just walked into her rooms and announced that he had a gift for her. As she unpacked the little box she found a dress of dark-bronze colouring inside. Following her questioning look, Draco gestured to her bedroom to change. She went and tried it on. It barely touched her knees and seemed to be made of silk. The upper part looked like a wrap-around jacket. It was stunning. As she came out of her bedroom to show him, she was delighted to see a rather priceless look on his face
She was now wearing this gift though she felt slightly overdressed.
“And they didn’t say anything as to why we had to meet today? I thought we were to meet next weekend?”
“Merlin, Hermione, I told you I have no idea. Harry asked whether we could meet here today and I thought it was ok. I don’t … but there they are.” Draco, looking dashing in his black trousers and a button-up grey shirt himself, seemed to be relieved to be off the hook as Harry and Ginny came to their table. However, as he saw the look on Ginny’s face he couldn’t help but wonder whether he was in trouble.
The greetings were rather frosty Draco noticed. The four of them soon ordered and only after the waiter had gone, Harry turned to Draco, asking:
“So, Dray, did you know that Hermione’s department, the so-called ILRED, is something dangerously similar to a secret service?” Draco watched Hermione almost sputter her water across the table. He quirked an eyebrow at her.
“Erm, well, I didn’t think of it like that but I knew that in contrast to public believes it wasn’t only about law creation but also about its enforcement. Why do you ask?”
“Well, I had a visitor last night – in fact, just before I called you. His name, he said, was Beldin Black. He seems to be a business acquaintance of your father. He told me some interesting things about Hermione’s work.” With that he turned his gaze to Hermione. “Care to explain?”
That evening hadn’t gone at all as Hermione had hoped it would. As she walked towards the manor with Draco by her side she could almost feel the anger radiating from him. After what Harry had revealed in that booth, Hermione had told them about her work. With every question Harry or Ginny asked she had hoped that Draco would also react in some way. He didn’t. He just sat there, looking at her, his face shut as if he wore a wooden mask. It was harder to bear than the Potter’s accusations. In fact she’d have almost preferred him yelling at her but he remained silent for the rest of the evening.
As she walked next to him now, she wondered what was going in his head.
“Draco, please, let me explain. I …”
He just raised his hand to stop her and walked on towards the manor. Once there, he opened the door and let her pass before he entered himself. Then he let her to his study. He closed the door, cast a silencing charm and only then turned to her.
It took all his self-control not to yell at Hermione in the restaurant. All this time worrying about her safety and she just decided to not share the information which might let them to the attacker and his ‘employer’. She had to know what Harry and Gin felt like, right? They loved her … HE loved her. He couldn’t stand the thought that anything might happen to her … again. He had sat by that bedside for far too long – waiting for the chance to make it up to her, to let her see the real Draco Malfoy … or the new one as she called him. How could she be so reckless? It was too much. All the self-restraint he had displayed the last weeks was crumbling.
As she opened her mouth to say something, he began to talk. He started quietly but his voice seemed to grow louder with every word he said.
“Do you have any idea how hard we tried to get information about your attacker? Don’t you know that we were frightened from that moment we knew that this wasn’t an accident? Harry worked day and night for months. Gin barely saw him anymore since he tried to protect you from further harm. I sat at your bed so many times I couldn’t count them. I fought with your stupid ex-boyfriend. I had all my ‘acquaintances’ gathering what information they could find. Then, once you were awake we planned how to keep you safe. I had those rooms prepared for you, my mother agreed to stay home to watch over you when I wasn’t here; my father asked for all the favours people owed him to get an idea about what was going on. We are accused of holding you hostage and the press is waylaying us wherever we go. But that’s alright because it keeps you safe here. And now you tell me that you had information which would have helped Harry end this? You didn’t tell us because you didn’t want to risk current investigations? What the bloody hell is wrong you?”
He took a menacing step in her direction. Suddenly, he was towering over her. When Hermione looked up at him, she shivered because of the storm going on in his now cloudy-grey eyes. The Gryffindor in her advanced, though.
“I told you I couldn’t talk about it. These people are not only a threat to me but to so many people. I couldn’t risk giving my colleagues’ work away. Not even Kingsley knows about this.”
Draco closed the gap between them, his voice becoming dangerously low.
“You’ll tell me everything Hermione. I need to know everything to protect you.” Hermione squirmed. He was definitely too close to her. She wasn’t used to that. She couldn’t think clearly. She looked up in his eyes, realized that was a mistake – making her thoughts even fuzzier – and looked away again.
“I am sorry, alright?! I am sorry for every inconvenience I caused. You’re under no obligation to do anything for me, I know, and it was asked too much to do all of this. I know that.” Hermione noticed to her amazement that she yelled at him. She knew this wasn’t right. He had gone out of his way to help her and this was no way to pay him back. She acted childish and she was fully aware of it. Yet she couldn’t stop. It just felt too good to finally vent all that pent-up wrath on somebody – no matter whom.
“I’ll leave if that’s what you want. I don’t need anybody to protect me. I am capable of that myself. You’ve done enough and, after all, I can manage now. There’s no need for the bloody training anymore and I can go and get an own apartment …”
“Bloody hell, woman. You’ll do no such thing.” He yelled. “You’ll stay here where I can ensure you’re safe. I need to know that, can’t you see … I …” he let out a frustrated sigh and turned to walk away.
“You what?” Hermione shrieked. He stopped. Somehow she seemed to miss the point, though she couldn’t say why. It was important to hear what he had to say, she knew that. As he made no attempt to turn around again, she grabbed his armed and pulled him back. She glared at him. “Well?”
Draco was beside himself. That damned woman would be the death of him. The last weeks were a rollercoaster of feelings. There were the companionable moments they shared – more than he’d have dared dreaming of, actually – but apart from that she either had him worried to death or fuming with anger. He wasn’t sure which one of the two was reigning right now. As she pulled him back, her touch send electric sparks up his arm. He looked down to meet her challenging stare but how could he express exactly why he wanted her safe and sound? How could he tell her that she had been constantly on his mind for … for he didn’t even know how long … even before that blasted accident however? All that came to his mind were cliché phrases she wouldn’t care to hear. And that look. She challenged him, did she? She wanted to know his ulterior motives? Suddenly his anger flared – again. This was an impossible situation. He had restrained himself for far too long, now. He hated the feeling not to know what to say and do. So he did what he had refrained from doing the last months. He braced himself for her wrath and then grabbed her, held her close and his lips crashed down on hers.
A/N: Finally – a kiss. Everybody who’s curious as to how Hermione will react raise a hand … damn that didn’t work. Well, everybody who’s curious as to how Hermione will react just push the blue button below and leave a review … that should work ^^
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