Chapter 2 : Mudbloods and Prejudice
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The Hogwarts Express gleamed brightly in its statuesque colours of black and read. A guardian to the realm of Wizardry. She eagerly looked around for some sigh of the friends she knew but could not find them. It was not unusual, she wasn’t early but they were usually late. Instead of waiting on the formidable platform, she decided a better use of her time might be best served in the heads carriage. She had little desire in knowing who the head boy was, knowing her luck of late, chances are it wouldn’t be someone good. Immersing herself in a book was what she did best, plus it gave her a chance not to think of the grief that was tearing her apart, it had all happened so suddenly she doubted her friends even knew yet.
The sliding of the carriage door announced his arrival but he needn’t have bothered. His plan was always to degrade her in the worst way but today nothing could make her feel worse. Nothing effected her, “Mudblood: he drawled, smirking snidely. She made no notion that she’d heard him or not, ‘why bother’ she thought, nothing will stop him. “It’s rude not to say hello but I’d expect nothing better from a Mudblood” he huffed, clearly pleased with his remark.
She sighed, what were these games for, “It’s like you actually want to talk to me, Ferret”, her words dripped with iciness, momentarily making him stumble. She was saved from what she assumed would be another prejudice remark against Mudbloods by the arrival of Professor McGonagall. She appeared to discuss their duties aboard the train, their duties at the school and to welcome them back to school. She asked them to find her after dinner so she could escort them to their rooms. With that being their dismissal they were free to patrol the halls and hang with their friends.
She knew it would be too much to ask, leaving the room in silence. So the hushed ‘Mudblood’ that followed her departure did not bother her much. The way may have ended but clearly some people’s opinions hadn’t.
Did she honestly expect anything better from the great ‘ferret’ Draco Malfoy. Well no, but that didn’t mean she hadn’t hoped for a change in people’s opinions. Now that the war was finally over and Voldemort had gone things were changing for the better. The Malfoy’s had been acquitted on trial, a fact that greatly angered Harry but apparently there had been strong witnesses and evidence claiming their innocence. Dumbledore himself was said to have given great evidence that lead to their acquittal. A fact that angered Harry even more as Dumbledore refused to share with Harry why the Malfoy’s were innocent.
“Hermione, over here” a head of ginger hair appeared from one of the carriages grinning and waving for her to join. She hurried down the corridor and into the compartment. She was greeted with the glorious site of Ginny, Harry and her boyfriend Ron. Their faces bought much happiness and somewhat diminished the grief consuming her soul. She sat by Ron who leaned in to give her a kiss which she feverishly returned. Ron and her made perfect sense, it was like a dream.
“What have you been up to Mione? Why didn’t you come to the Burrow? I heard you found your parents. I bet it was good to spend time with them” said Harry, always a question asker but never really a listener. Suddenly the hole in her heart started to expand. They really didn’t know what had happened. Her heart sank, now she’d have to explain, start with the easiest answer first she thought.
“I couldn’t come to the Burrow because I was too busy. You are right Harry, I did find my parents and I had a fantastic summer with them. I couldn’t come to the Burrow because I was too busy planning a funeral. I planned a funeral because my parents are dead. They died in a car crash on their way back from work” she left out the part about being adopted/kidnapped. There was no need to shock them further. She stared into the silence, she needed to cry but had nothing left to shed. Ron’s arm fell slack against her shoulders. She could sympathize with their shock but this prolonged silence was making her uncomfortable. She expected ‘I’m sorry’ and ‘We’re here for you’ that’s what she’d experienced the generic reply to be. So she braced herself for these remarks.
They came none Ginny hugged her, a strong gripped hug filled with love, sorrow and passionate friendship, with Ginny words were sometimes unneeded. She looked over at Harry who looked very much like he wanted to hug her and never let go. His eyes brimmed with tears yet to be shed. Ron remained unresponsive an unmoved like he couldn’t work it out or know what to do. The disappointment Hermione felt at this was hidden well, Ron wasn’t always the most sensitive of people.
Talk moved away from the sadness of this topic and into one of more interesting conversation, i.e. the new Head Boy and who it was, “Malfoy” of course said Hermione without a hint of bitterness in her voice. Harry said he’d suspected that it would have been given to him. Ginny offered her sympathy, she secretly hoped Malfoy would change this year, but offered to help Hermione prank him if things got that bad.
Ron however seemed angered, more than that he seemed furious. Obviously he was already aware that the Head’s shared a common room. “I forbid you Hermione, I want you to turn down the Head Girl position right now! You are not sharing anything with Malfoy” he thundered to a Shockley pale white Hermione.
Ginny was livid with her brother, “How dare you ask her that. Hermione’s worked so hard for that position. She deserves it. So what if Malfoy’s Head Boy, you are not going to take this away from Hermione. Urgh! How could you be so insensitive” she roared.
Even Harry was irritated by Ron’s behavior, “Ron you have no right to try and control Hermione. You are her boyfriend not her guardian, so back off!” added Harry. So the rest of the journey was spend discussing happier things with the exception of the growing tension created by the ever so silent and pissed off Ron Weasley. His mood/reaction worried Hermione, a lot.
The sorting hat didn’t seem to have a long speech prepared this year, which was surpising seeing that the war had ended. However, he did seem to have given up on his house unity speeches, obviously now the danger had passed, he felt no need for it. Dinner as usual was a noisy affair, after the welcoming of new students, the food appeared and the majority of the population was suddenly ruled by their stomachs. Ron was the worst, it was like he became more starved and repulsive each year. Hermione didn’t mind so much, she loved him after all. After his earlier outburst he seemed himself again.
After dinner was finished and Dumbledore had given his speech – including a one minute silence for those who had fallen in the war – he announced bed for all. So a couple of hugs and a quick passionate kiss and Hermione went off to find McGonagall. The best thing to do in a time like this was not to think of the impending doom of sharing the Heads dorm with the fantastic bouncing Ferret.
“Ah good, your both here” commented McGonagall waving a hand in the direction of Hermione and Malfoy.
She pursed her lips, “Hmm, well follow me” McGonagall started walking without giving a chance for questions.
“Here” she said after directing their attention towards the hidden portrait. A girl and a boy, typical, like the portrait for the Heads dorm had to be guarded by previous Heads of old. It must be some twisted joke of the Headmasters of the school.
Regardless, McGonagall repeated the password to us – ‘secrets’ – and shoved them inside. The common room was decorated in perfect harmony with the colours of both Gryffindor and Slytherin. The Head Girls room was off to the left while the Head Boys was off to the right. There was a door nestled between the two which led to a luxurious bathroom, fit for royalty not students. Hermione stared around her in wonder, the richness of the place even grander than Gyffindor’s common room/dorm. In a rare moment, Hermione willingly looked at Malfoy from the corner of her eye. He looked the same smarmy Ferret, like he’d expected nothing less. Typical behavior for someone who’d been bought up with the silver spoon.
“Well Granger, this year would be almost perfect if I didn’t have to share this with you” he smirked. Hermione refused to look at him, she refused to let him get to her. “What no bookworm remarks Granger?” his voice like a slithery snake, “I hear you finally found your parents, had a nice Mudblood summer did you?” he said evilly. She hadn’t found her voice buy she managed to send him an icy glare before storming into her room.
Funny thought Malfoy, the whole reason he antagonized her was because of the banter, the witty replies he got. It was like having a proper conversation. He was a little put out she hadn’t given him anything back. She seemed off today, and when Malfoy didn’t get what he wanted, he was angered. He stood in the common room momentarily till he heard the soft cried of a girl. Granger he thought, crying? Usually this would please him but as he made his way to bed all he could ponder on was whether he’d made her cry.
I hope people are enjoying this story, though it has only just started. The chapters are already planned out and I've written a third of it. I'm enjoying it at any rate :)
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