A huge thanks to my reviewers from the last chapter, HuffGriffSlyRaven, Paige, C'est moi, Slytherinbadgirl, MiSTY_VoLPe, VeeKAY, Harmonia, and of course Gin-gin06. I love all of you guys to death. You all deserve cookies. And you've earned my upmost respect and appreication.
Another thanks to my personal friend and Beta, Bella_bug. Thank you for helping me edit all my chapters and stories, this one especially. Love you missy. :)
Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter or the wonderful world my characters live in, all that is part of the brilliant mind of our personal queen, JK Rowling. I don't own Beauty and the Beast either, that credit goes to either Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve or Jeanne-Marie Le Prince de Beaumont. Whoever came up with that wonderful story has my full praise. Y'all are smart, and I'm sure you can figure out what's mine and what's not. :)
I was running through a forest, panicked out of my mind while following the voice high above me. ‘This way,’ it called, ‘over here, your parents are over here. This way.’ It was a constant stream of taunts and jeers, all hitting me in a spot that hurt the most, my parents. Each time I ran around a tree, the voice would call out again telling me I was closer or further from my parents, though there was a constant message… they were in danger. I ran and ran to the point that I could hardly breathe, until I burst into a clearing; the voice began laughing maniacally, this time sounding from directly behind me.
I spun around and saw Voldemort standing a mere ten feet behind me, looking down at the ground while continuing his sinister laugh. I glanced at the ground and took a step back when I saw what was there; it was my parents lying dead at his feet. “NO!” I screamed but no sound came out. Voldemort stopped laughing and raised his face, meeting my eyes which I could tell were now wide with shock and fear. I reached for my wand only to realize it wasn’t there. I took another step back involuntarily, suddenly more panicked. A smile slowly spread across his face and I closed my eyes, expecting the worst. There was a flash of green light, even through my closed eyelids, and then… nothing.
I awoke with a start, sweat beading on my forehead and my breath coming in short rasps. I was shaking violently, and before I knew it, on the verge of tears.
The dream had felt so incredibly real. I’d truly felt as if I’d been running towards an impending doom, and I’d been right. The image of my parents dead on the ground far too real and still burned into my head. An image I could never forget. I shook my head in an attempt to convince myself it wasn’t real, that they were alive and well and it had all been a horrible dream, though I knew that’s what it was. My brain needed more convincing.
I slid out of bed and began pacing. I glanced at the clock and saw that it read a little before 10 PM. I’d only been asleep for an hour or two. I needed to wake myself from the still-vivid nightmare. I glanced around and my eyes found the door that stood near the dresser. I made my way towards the simple white door and cautiously reached out to the plain silver knob, turning it slowly and opening the door. I gasped and found myself completely unable to move as I saw what lay behind the door.
Before me stood the most extravagant bathroom I’d ever seen. In the very center of the large room stood a large Jacuzzi-sized tub that was raised a good five feet off the ground with stairs leading up and into the tub on each of the sides.
Behind the tub was a long wall that spanned a good fifteen feet in length. A counter and mirror ran the entire length of the wall, causing the bathroom to look even larger. A large sink rested in the middle of the counter, a small chandelier above it. I glanced around and realized there was also a regular shower with glass doors and black tile to the left and a simple white toilet to the right. The entire bathroom appeared to be made of white and black marble, the effect was truly dazzling.
I made my way around the tub and over to the counter and sink. Along the back of the counter stood a large collection of perfumes, shampoos, conditioners, soaps, and lotions. Near the sink I noticed a piece of folded paper. I picked it up and opened it, once again recognizing Malfoy’s handwriting.
I see you’ve found the bathroom. I hope it’s not too much. I didn’t know what kind of anything you preferred, so I figured I’d leave you with some options. Enjoy.
Merlin, some options? It was more than enough shampoo alone to last the entire Weasley family an entire year. My heart sank as I thought about the Weasleys. I missed them more than I’d ever though was possible. I felt tears prick at the edges of my eyes and I shook my head, trying to return my focus to something else.
I sighed and set the letter down on the counter, turning the sink faucet on. Cold, fresh water spurted out and I cupped my hands under it, allowing the water to fill my hands and spill over before splashing some on my face. I turned the faucet off and glanced around, my eyes finally resting on a couple stacks of deep purple towels to the left, some larger than others. I grabbed a smaller towel and dabbed my face dry. I turned around and my eyes immediately shifted to the vast tub. A bath was definitely just what I needed.
I walked across the bathroom and shut the door leading to my bedroom, noticing a deep purple robe hanging on the back, the color a perfect match to the towels. I grabbed it and swung it over my shoulder, making my way back to the counter. I set the robe down and undressed, folding and placing my clothes on the counter before putting the robe on and grabbing one of the larger towels. I made my way to the tub and ascended the stairs.
When I reached the top of the stairs, I saw that there were seven different faucet handles. I didn’t know which did which so I set my towel down and turned each one in succession. The first turned on the water and steam began rising from the tub immediately. The next handle seemed to adjust temperature and as I turned it back and forth more or less steam would rise from the water. The next handle wouldn’t move back and forth and I found that I had to pull it up, which plugged the drain. The remaining handles all caused different colored liquids to come out of faucets, two on either side of the water. The water in the tub now covered in a layer of light blue bubbles.
The whole idea reminded me of a miniature version of the Prefect tub at Hogwarts. Though, not really all that miniature. The tub itself seemed to be a square and was longer each way than I was tall, a good four feet deep. I sat on the edge and tested the water with my foot, adjusting the second handle accordingly until it was a nice, comfortable temperature. When the tub was nearly full, I removed the robe and set it behind the handles, slowly making my way into the tub.
I let out a soft sigh as I settled in, finding the bench that lined one side of the tub. I sat in the water for what felt like hours, allowing my mind to drift off and not focus on today’s events. This past day had truly been exhausting and I didn’t see much hope in the following days, weeks, and possibly even months.
A knock sounded from the bathroom door and I muttered a “come in.”
The door opened and someone shouted, “BLOODY HELL, GRANGER!” It was Malfoy.
“What are you doing in here?” I shrieked and sunk into the water further, truly grateful for the size of the tub and the fact that he couldn’t see anything.
“YOU said to come in!” he shouted.
“Did not,” I shot back, realizing however, that I had, “Oh… I suppose I did, didn’t I?” I said, using much less force and volume this time.
“Well, there’s really no need to shout. Did you need something, Malfoy?” I asked, covering myself despite knowing he couldn’t see anything. I’d never felt more exposed.
“I would like a word with you, yes.” He said.
“Well fine, close your eyes and walk away. Close the door and I’ll be out in a moment.” His eyes narrowed but he obeyed, shutting his eyes and turning around, running into the door frame. Bloody idiot, I hadn’t meant he needed to do both. He found his way out the door and shut it behind him. I slowly rose from the tub, the air freezing on my wet skin. I shivered and grabbed my robe.
I didn’t bother drying off or draining the tub, figuring it would be a quick talk and I could resume my bath afterwards. I slipped the robe on and tied the strings in a bow in the front before descending the stairs.
Whoever had designed this glorious bathroom clearly hadn’t thought about the one thing that made it, well, a bathroom… water. I’d nearly made it all the way down the small flight of stairs when my foot slipped on the bottom stair, causing me to fall and hit my head on the marble floor… hard.
I blinked a few times and groaned, my head throbbing and the light causing the pain to increase. I groaned and shut my eyes, reaching up to the spot I’d hit it and bringing the hand back, opening my eyes and feeling extremely relieved when I saw there was no blood.
“Granger!” I heard from outside the bathroom door. “Answer me!” Malfoy said, his voice sounding distant. I tried to answer and tell him I’d be right out but all that came out was a low moan. The door opened and I opened my eyes slightly, vaguely aware that Malfoy was staggering his way towards me.
“What… happened?” Malfoy stammered, collapsing to his knees beside me and checking me over.
“Who designed this bathroom?” I finally managed to get out after several moments. He gave me a quizzical look as if I’d gone crazy.
“I did… why?” he asked slowly, still eying me with caution.
“Idiot,” I muttered, “why would you think marble is a good idea around water?” I said and sighed, shutting my eyes to block out the light once more, but not before I thought I saw what appeared to be the flicker of a smile play at his lips.
“Well, you aren’t bleeding. Though it felt… err sounded like a nasty fall. I’ll carry you to your bed and drain the bath for you.” I tried to tell him I didn’t need help but he took my incoherent mumble as an okay and slid his arms under me, picking me up as if I were as light as a feather.
Before I knew it, he was gently laying me down on my bed and making his way over to the opposite side, pulling the covers back. He then returned to me and picked me up, moving me to the opposite side and placing me down gently once more, pulling the covers over me. The pain was now subsiding and I slowly opened my eyes, watching him walk across the room to the bathroom.
I heard the sound of draining water from the bathroom and sighed, so much for returning to my bath. A door clicked shut and I saw Malfoy coming towards me, eyes wide with what appeared to be concern. I must be more injured than I though.
“Are you okay?” Draco whispered as he bent down next to me, clearly not wanting to upset or disturb me.
“Never better,” I said, giving him a weak smile.
“I’m serious, Granger. I just want to make sure you don’t have memory loss or anything. Are. You. Okay?” He asked again, this time more slowly and looking genuinely concerned.
“I’m fine, Malfoy,” I said, suddenly feeling beyond exhausted. He nodded and stood up, patting down the covers before walking away, looking deflated.
“Wait,” I said, and he stopped walking, turning to face me and giving me a questioning look, “What did you come here for?” I asked, remembering him saying he’d wanted a word with me.
“Nothing, it can wait.” He said, giving me a sad smile before leaving my room. He shut the door behind him before I could argue, leaving me more confused than ever.
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