Hermione’s mind was a tornado of activity. What! He can’t really be serious? I can’t work with Malfoy! I’ve been fighting AGAINST him for most of my life and now what? I’m supposed to drop everything and live with him for God knows how long on the hunt for fake Horcruxes!? This teacher is mental! Absolutely mental! He’ll probably kill me the second we’re off the grounds and run back to his pureblood family proudly! Hermione was seething. Half the class seemed shocked at her and Malfoy’s outburst. The other half seemed shocked that she and Malfoy hadn’t attacked Professor Noires by now.
Professor Noires gave them a confused look. “Is there a problem here?” he asked with a slightly superior note in his voice.
Hermione attempted to remain calm hoping her face didn’t betray her by displaying her emotions which were hovering somewhere between pure shock and outright anger. “Well, the thing is Professor” Hermione began “Is that Malfoy and I really don’t get along very well and I feel it would be very…..unproductive to have us as partners” Hermione finished trying to sound polite. “Perhaps we could just redraw partners?” she asked hopefully.
“I’m sorry, Ms. Granger, but I don’t think that’s possible” Professor Noires said though he didn’t look sorry at all. “As I said before, we don’t always get to pick who we work with. It would be utterly unfair to let you and Mr. Malfoy trade your partners. You will have to work together.”
Hermione opened her mouth to speak but Malfoy beat her to it, his face a mixture of rage and disgust. “You expect me to work and live with that know-it-all Mudblood?! Are you mental?” he yelled sending daggers at Professor Noires.
Hermione’s anger at Professor Noires subsided as her anger at Malfoy began to bubble. “You have some nerve Malfoy!!” She sneered at him. “You were trying to stop us from destroying Voldemort for six years! We saved your life and you turn around and insult me? Grow a spine!” she spat at him.
Malfoy’s face began to redden. “We? You keep talking about this we? Well, where are Potty and the Weasel King now? Left you alone here, hmmm? You are nothing but a stupid, know-it-all Mudblood without the rest of the Golden Trio and you know it! How does it feel to be abandoned by them?” Malfoy was seething his fists clenched so tightly his knuckles were white.
Hermione’s eyes were wide. Malfoy had touched a nerve. A part of her couldn’t help but notice how right he was in his observations. He was much more observant than she gave him credit for. That doesn’t make up for the fact that he’s a spineless git, though. Hermione thought angrily.
Hermione stood there with her mouth open trying to come up with a decent insult to throw back. But nothing was coming to her. The sting of Malfoy’s last comment was still burning. Malfoy noticed how much he had hurt her and a nasty smirk settled on his face.
Professor Noires jumped in before either one spoke again, his eyes wide with shock. “That is enough!” he yelled at them “Ms. Granger, Mr. Malfoy sit back down this instant. This is ridiculous! I don’t care what you have to say! The two of you will be working together on this project and you will treat it with the upmost importance or the both of you will fail this year! Is that understood?” he eyes were narrow, daring them to say no.
“Yes, Professor” Hermione mumbled sitting down defeated.
“Yes, Professor” Malfoy said putting as much contempt into the last word as possible. He held his glare at Professor Noires and ever so slowly took his seat.
Professor Noires continued to pair up the rest of the class, but Hermione didn’t hear a word he said. Her mind was trapped in a horror filled daze. She would have to live with Malfoy! She would have to work with Malfoy! The very same Malfoy who less than a year ago had fought against her! The very same Malfoy who had watched Bellatrix Lestrange unleash her anger on her. Hermione’s eyes were stung by the onset of unshed tears. It took every ounce of control to hold herself together. Finally, Professor Noires dismissed them telling them that they would no longer meet formally but they would need to meet with their partner and be prepared to leave at a moment’s notice. He finished by handing them each a homemade book titled “A Biography of Jason Noires” and a list of suitable means to destroy the fake Horcruxes.
Hermione left the classroom in a hurry and rushed up to the common room. She reached her dormitory and flung herself onto her bed and sobbed. After the tears would no longer come she crawled under her covers and gave into her exhaustion.
When she awoke she realized it was probably time for supper. The growling in her stomach confirmed her thoughts. She headed down for the Great Hall lethargically. She arrived to the familiar sound of excited chatter. When she was spotted however, most of the chatter changed into a whisper. She was vaguely aware of the stares that followed her as she made her way to her seat. She sat down and began to help herself to some food.
“What?” she asked annoyed as she noticed the continued stares.
Everyone immediately turned back to eating and chatting. Hermione took a bite of her food and chewed slowly. Absentmindedly she began to scan the Great Hall. Her appetite vanished as she noticed an angry looking tall, blonde figure walking into the Great Hall. Pansy Parkinson was draped on his arm shooting daggers at Hermione as if this was somehow her fault. Hermione sighed and turned back to stare at her food.
“Hermione,” Ginny said cautiously “Do you—do you want to talk about it?” her big brown eyes were full of concern.
Hermione figured that with Lavender and Pavarti in the class, the entire school would have heard about her and Malfoy’s unfortunate situation.
Hermione looked up “No, I really don’t want to talk about it” she said stubbornly.
Neville took this moment to pipe up. “It will all be alright, Hermione. Don’t worry. It’s just a school project!” Hermione could tell from his voice that he didn’t truly believe what he said.
Hermione forced a smile. “I’ve already helped take down Voldemort, Malfoy should be no issue!” she made her voice sound sincere but her eyes betrayed her.
Neville and Ginny looked at each other their faces mirrored each other’s concern. But eventually they let it go and continued to eat.
That night Hermione sat on her bed. She knew she had to talk to Malfoy. As much as she didn’t want to they needed to plan or they would fail and for Hermione that just wasn’t an option. She would just have to work with her enemy and she would start tomorrow.
A/N: Hey everyone! Thanks for reading! I'm sorry this chapter was a little shorter and I promise to update soon! Don't forget to REVIEW!!!!!! And as a disclaimer I own nothing but the characters I created and the plot.....again please please please with sugar quills on top review!!! Thanks again!
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