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There is a reason why there's a path less traveled by... by Feathered_Avenger
Chapter 14 : Coming undone
 
Rating: MatureChapter Reviews: 5


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            Ministry starts up with all the research. I accidentally get rid of my coworkers and shortly after bring Granger into the department knowing she would be useful. Senka is placed in this department on a hunch. Ministry finds a major lead. Granger falls to Blaze’s charm. Against my initial instinct I fall for it also because she did. I destroy the lead by taking Blaze and follow up by destroying Senka’s prized department. Granger refuses to back out. Her last outlet of escape is gone and she can forever call herself a person of interest to the Ministry. She’s drives me the bloody fuck insane. I caught someone following me yesterday; maybe they follow McLaggen and Granger also?

 

            But they are just tools; they’re expendable. That’s why I had them here in the first place. To work for my cause like the last bunch of people and then wipe their memories and get rid of them.

 

            I shouldn’t care. You do though. No I don’t. McLaggen is something like an injury. Hampering… but can be very useful for an excuse or to blame for faults. And McLaggn is more aware of his surroundings then you originally gave him credit for. It was good to see things through his perspective to help me get a clear view of things.

 

            Tools can be replaced but my chance of getting rid of them both is gone. They aren’t tools anymore. McLaggen will stay and maybe even help out himself. Granger- she can’t be erased. Instinct and feelings can’t be scrubbed away, because of Blaze she has to stay. Because of my own irritating confusing attachment- she stays on.

 

Draco paced tirelessly in the confine of his office, glancing at the clock.

 

            But it’s just because Blaze needs her. No it isn’t, it’s something else. No it’s not. I warned her, told her she could have gone free because I knew she would have complicated things. Because you cared. No. Liar-

 

He barely noticed his door open until Cormac spoke, startling him out of his mental struggle.

 

            “Granger still not here then?” Cormac asked, glancing around as though expecting Hermione to be hiding behind the desk.

 

            Hello tool! No that’s not true- “No. Senka still waiting around outside?”

 

            “Been there for ages.”  Cormac settled against the doorframe to survey his stressed coworker. He casually rubbed the bandages on his arm from his last hospital visit and glanced over his shoulder. “So Senka seems to be a bit out of it lately huh?”

 

            “Seems like it.” She’s only been sending people to stalk me and probably you also. What the hell is holding Granger up? She should have been here by now-

 

            “She doesn’t seem to be bossing us around quite as much as she used to. Mostly by letters and whatnot… never by direct order anymore. Doesn’t seem like her style, she loved yelling at us. Probably doesn’t have time anymore since she has been trying to rebuild her department.”

 

Draco just nodded in answer and glanced at the clock again. Maybe Granger just didn’t feel like coming today. No she would have told me. Because SHE cares unlike you, you callous, demonic-

 

Shut up!

 

Cormac watched him pace “Shame Granger isn’t here, she has a knack at drawing Senka’s attention most days of late. All the research Granger does… that woman is a godsend. Can’t believe she does all the file work after she gets home. Course if Senka would stop piling jobs on us she wouldn’t have to.”

 

            “Probably not.” She was with Blaze, Luna and I last night what the hell could have happened between ten at night to eight the following morning. She’s never late! Are they following her? What more do I have to wreck up to keep Senka’s prying eyes to herself!

 

Cormac sighed at his short answers and changed tactics, “So you and Granger have been doing well?”

 

Draco’s head snapped up, “What?”

 

            “Coming to work together, leaving together. You seem to get off better, you know what I mean?”

 

            Told you, “No.” Draco said shortly, but he stopped pacing. He worked hard to crush the twinge of delight that made his eyes lighten a shade. Denial- Shut up!

 

            “Don’t play stupid Malfoy,” Cormac said with amusement. “We both know the luck you have with woman and that Weasley couldn’t quite- ah- get to Granger the right way.”

 

            “Just figured that out?” Draco snorted with derision.

 

            “She’s had her share of boyfriends the past few years. None of them seem to stick around long though.”

 

            “What are you some type of stalker?” Draco sneered with a steely glint in his eyes.

 

            “We’ve had our run ins here.” Cormac said with shrug. “That and it’s kind of hard to ignore her you know? It’s almost like she’s a celebrity among guys. Great war heroine and all that. Trophy girlfriend, except you can never keep her on a shelf. No one’s figured out how to keep her.”

 

Draco kept silent, his full attention on his russet haired coworker loitering in the doorway of his office. What the hell is this blithering idiot on about? But he couldn’t look away, it was like listening to an idiot voicing all of the concerns he had had for the past month. 

 

            “Doesn’t stop everyone from trying,” Cormac continued, “You know Weasley and Potter are actually talking again? I suppose the short time he worked here, he caught the bug again. Realized what he threw away and is weaseling his way back into Granger’s friends to get to her again.”

 

             “I haven’t been one to listen to gossip McLaggen.” No way she would take Weasel back. What does he have that I don’t? Friendship with Granger since first year. Messy break up that was all his fault, ha loser! Potter would fall onto his side faster then he ever would yours.

 

Draco shook his head. Was he purposefully trying to get under his skin? Because it was working. He was pissing himself off easily enough on his own; he didn’t McLaggen around to add to his growing rage. Surely McLaggen of all people couldn’t have picked up on anything… right?

 

“What do I care?” Draco asked with a slight edge to his tone.

 

            “I can’t help but be curious,” he held his hands up defensively. “I mean, it’s obvious why Weasley cheated, Granger didn’t put out; didn’t let him get close to her. And they even shared an apartment. And she knew him for years. Boyfriend after boyfriend slips past her after her break up with Weasley. But then she comes in here and after a few months she’s different…” Cormac trailed off.

 

            “What do you mean?” Draco bristled.

 

A grin slowly spread across his face. “You got her didn’t you? I should have known… playing nice would only have pushed her away.” He chuckled slightly. “So how was she? All that pent up anger has to express itself in some way or another.”

 

            “There’s nothing to tell. Wouldn’t want to go near her anyways; Potter watches her like a hawk.” Don’t test me McLaggen, stop toying with me.

 

Cormac folded his arms across his chest and watched him resume his pacing. Though it was now an outlet to expend his growing fury then the worry that had been eating at him before.

 

            “Ah yes, Granger’s ‘lifeguard’ so to speak. He can be a right pain in the ass. Especially if you’ve been labeled as a potential swimmer. You know, if he cared so much about who Granger ends up with, why doesn’t he just take her himself?”

 

 

Draco snorted at this, “He’s married already.”

 

            “Yeah, but as purebloods we have never settled for second best. Except for the Weasley’s but they don’t count. There aren’t many purebloods left who aren’t related. Majority of them these days are all male, and have no choice but to mix their blood up, or go for a Veela heritage. And the thing is, Granger is the ‘Brightest Witch of Our Age’… a Muggleborn, fresh blood. So even to purebloods who take their blood seriously, she gets their attention.”

 

            “McLaggen, seriously, I don’t care.” Is that aggression in your tone?

 

            No it’s fucking happiness.

 

            Well good. It seems nothing has changed. You still hold no sympathy and absolutely no-

 

Draco groaned to himself. Great, just great. I’m having entire conversations in my head with myself and I’m so confused I don’t even know what the hell I’m doing.

 

            “Just making conversation Malfoy. And she isn’t bad to look at either.” He chuckled to himself, “and that’s putting it lightly. She’s filled out quite well, it’s only a matter of time before someone notices who’ll actually stick in for the long haul and play for keeps.”

 

Draco glared at him. Could he be any more irritating? No, no I don’t think he could. He of course pegs the one thing you’re touchy about. Why couldn’t he talk about Lavender Brown or Weaselette?

 

He sized Cormac up and trying to find out what he was up to. But Cormac broke eye contact and admired the ceiling.

 

 After months of being used as bait it was good to off foot his evil blond coworker.

 

Cormac grinned at the tiles over his head, “So if you don’t care then you won’t mind giving me few pointers about Granger then would you? Since you have gotten the closest to her, then I’ll be ahead of the rest. I already have chivalrous acts down. So the next time we’re on a job and something comes after her, if you would let her alone so I can pull her out of the way that would be great. Oh and all those times Senka tries to corner her, I’ll be the one to get our boss to leave her alone. And then there are the little things like holding doors open and not being outright vicious to Potter because we all know how much he means to her. So I’ll take care of all that from now on… since you don’t care.” 

 

            “Fuck off.” Draco snapped. “I don’t care.”

 

            “So what has you all worked up then? Surely it isn’t her absence. Or is it the fact that she’s wearing a padlocked chastity belt and Potter has the key hanging from his neck?”

 

            “She can take Potter down in a second. She’s not anyone’s to hand off.”

 

The russet haired man smirked at the ceiling. “I’d better add defending her honor to that list too.”

 

Draco bit back a growl and kept his narrowed eyes locked on the floor as he turned and moved swiftly to leave. He CAN be more irritating!

 

            “Hey Malfoy, where you going?” Cormac questioned as he quickly sidestepped his furious coworker to avoid being shoved out of the way.

 

Draco froze. He didn’t have to answer, he didn’t owe him anything. It would be good to have Cormac on his side though… he could be rather useful. Or he could be the biggest pain in the ass if he was turned against him. You want him on your side and you know it.

 

            “To get Granger.” he answered in a low voice. His gaze flicked from the general direction of their boss to Cormac and back again. To make sure Senka hasn’t jumped to conclusions and done something I’d have to kill her for.

 

            “You’ve noticed too then,” Cormac said quietly, picking up on his dark look. He nodded towards their boss. “That woman has been scary silent; just watching us whenever she comes in now. Sort of off footing isn’t it? I wish she would get pissed like she used too, now she just leers…” He turned his gaze to the other who watched their boss through narrowed eyes. “It’s almost like she knows something...” His voice lowered ominously but there was a grin slowly spreading across his face “or maybe waiting for something… like Draco Malfoy getting the living shit kicked out of him whenever Potter finds out he’s-!” Cormac hissed with glee but broke off with a yelp when Draco punched him on his arm- the precise spot covered in bandages and still healing.

 

            “Shut up!” He snarled.

 

            “I had nine inch long goddamn spines in that arm a fucking month ago!” Cormac’s eyes watered with pain. “The poison took me out for three fucking days!”

 

            “Then keep that shit to yourself!” Or I’ll break more then your damn arm and land you for a month stay in the hospital.

 

            “Touchy Malfoy,” Cormac chirped “You know, if I were a bad person I might run and tell Potter, but since I’m good, I’ll withhold from doing that if you do me a favor-”

 

Cormac inhaled sharply when he was nearly jerked off his feet and found himself starring wide eyed into narrowed silver eyes.

 

            “You do anything more to piss me off and I will end you.” 

Cormac's eyes widened.
 

After a dark look he shoved his coworker aside “Keep Senka busy, and I’ll be willing to work with you as far as compensation goes. And keep your mouth shut.”

 

Cormac blinked, “okay.” He cleared his throat a few times to try and make his voice stop cracking as he walked over to Senka’s desk.

 

            “What do you want?” His boss asked uncaringly.

           

            “I couldn’t help but notice that you’ve been watching me a lot recently.” Senka’s eyes widened and then narrowed into slits. “And I would just like you to know that I have half a mind to set up a restraining order on you for making me feel uncomfortable because you are undressing me in your mind every time you see me walk in the door…”

 

Draco slipped into his office and shut his door quietly, still numb with rage. So people were all lining up to get their paws on Granger were they? He considered it character building that they could try all they wanted to but they could only have her in their dreams. Because Granger knew exactly what they were after and she would never let them within six feet of her knowing they just wanted to get in her pants-

 

-Wait a minuet… that sounded rather familiar. It kind of matched up to one of his goals.

 

He paused for a moment to think about it.

 

Damn.

 

The knowledge that he himself was one of the many eager others was rather disconcerting.

 

Okay so the past few months he hadn’t been with anyone. But could you blame him? He had a sweet little boy at home that he would do anything for- not- that he would admit it to anyone. He wasn’t the touchy feely type.

 

Thanks to Felix being in and out of the country that left Senka pretty much free to dump nasty jobs on them at random hours to bother them. Draco was certain she was on to him. He would have to keep playing his role a bit longer before he could trap her.

 

So with all of that, he really didn’t have any time to snag a good, slutty, dumb bimbo.

 

What was he thinking, of course he had the time. Ten minuets was a wide enough window to spoil a girl’s sex life. She would never find anyone to match up to him.

 

He just didn’t exactly want to anymore.

 

It was all Granger’s fault, he decided. If she wasn’t so violent he wouldn’t be in this situation. It was like some kind of sick physical attraction thing that only seemed to work in her favor.

 

She allowed her hair to do its own thing, and usually wore casual clothes beneath her robes. The only time she wore makeup was during one of their calm and professional cases. Which was to say never. She had the most annoying habit of walking out while she was ahead. Complete with a smug smile and he could swear a strut as she walked out. Where was she going? He wasn’t done with her yet, he was just getting all warmed up for the ultimate victory after the eventual massive fight. But no, she took the small victory of wit and wordplay and left. Knowing it pissed him off to no end.

 

And those fights, what did she think she could prove by trying to take him down physically? He won every time. Then again when they started she was usually in such a rage she probably wasn’t thinking clear enough to remember how to use magic to wound instead.

 

This, in the beginning, was fine by him. He was more then gleeful to prove to her over and over that he could bring her slender form down. He loved to see the momentary flash of fear in her eyes when she again realized that her temper bested her and she landed herself in a situation that was beyond her control. Gloried in the trust that built each time he let her up, (after a smug comment of course).

 

That was then.

 

Now he was made a confused, lustful, wreck while she at the most just blushed and avoided his gaze. Did she not see what she was doing to him-? She had to have. It was like torture. They sort of worked together as strangers. They knew very little about one another in the hopes that- somehow- they could retain the small bit of the Hermione/Draco free life they had had before. Mainly that was out of pride and fear. Because it was all they had known in the past. They were both wary of what ‘forever’ meant for them.

 

When their fights went to the ground now, they had a moment where they stopped fighting. Their previous anger would sort of vanish and they were reminded yet again of their complicated situation. Awkward, scary, sometimes hilarious.

 

 

 

On second thought it was all Blaze’s fault. If he hadn’t come along and got Draco all stirred up, he wouldn’t be having this problem.

 

Of course if he went at it like that then he may as well blame the Ministry, it was their fault Blaze was orphaned.

 

Fuck it all, it was Draco’s fault and he knew it. His blood drove him. Blaze was just the small blue-eyed force that woke him up at the most inopportune time. Blaze brought out the sort of compassionate side of him. Which attracted Granger, which alerted him that she was interested…

 

Granger was just the unfortunate female that came to close. With time he wasn’t guaranteed to have, Draco was certain things would get better. Luna wanted to talk to him about it, but he refused. He didn’t want to know, and then maybe it wouldn’t happen.

 

Draco realized he had been starring off into space for the past five minuets and shook his head. He gathered himself together and his form flickered as he literally melted into thin air.

 

He felt the familiar feel of Hermione’s wards around her house and easily pushed them away.

 

She had a nice place. Small, comfortable, yet somehow he could sort of sense that she didn’t hold it of high importance. He seriously considered having it ‘accidentally’ destroyed and have all of her stuff ‘miraculously’ survive the explosion so she would just stay with him. May sound selfish, but in the long run, it was better that way. Someday she would beg him to take her in. Hopefully things wouldn’t be so bad then that he couldn’t jerk her around a bit before relenting. How dare she deny his solace? She’d understand eventually. It was just a matter of time.

 

He appeared directly on her doorstep and paused for several seconds. That alone would have normally warned her of someone approaching but there was no movement from inside.

            “Granger?” He called, knocking loudly and taking in his surroundings. He had been here several times before. He could feel her many wards seal back up. “Paranoid as fuck…” he muttered, unsure if he was talking about himself or all the wards around Hermione’s place. With an irritated huff he bypassed the spells on her door and pushed it open. “Granger?!” He said again, getting slightly worried as he was met with a dark, silent house.

 

Draco moved quickly through the living room. His eyes locked on the hallway that led to her bedroom, he nearly missed the figure passed out on the couch.

 

He was at her side in a flash, bending down to examine her. Was she dead? She might have been dead had it not been for the steady rise and fall of her chest. In a coma seemed more fitting state of being.

 

What the hell was wrong with her? She wasn’t a heavy sleeper. And he should know, there were several emergency cases where they had to report to the Ministry sometimes late at night or very early in the morning. Regardless, she was usually up and at her front door before he could even think about knocking because she had felt him take her wards down.

 

His eyes flashed oddly as he glanced around and finally found the source of her coma; studying. Books littered the table and were spread in an arc around where she had been sitting. Papers were in piles and laid out on the floor with spells keeping them organized even when Draco aimed a kick at them.

 

She was late because she overslept, that was all. He worried for nothing.

 

            “Granger,” he shook her slightly, trying to rouse her from her sleep. The heat of her body made him pull away in surprise. She was burning up. A nasty fever it seemed. “Hey,” he said in a softer tone, touching her forehead where she burned hotter still, “how long have you been like this?”

 

She mumbled something comprehensible like, “Mmmhmm,” and hugged herself tightly.

 

He glanced around the house, unsure as to where she kept her blankets and medical stuff.

 

Not wanting to search the place for them, he decided just to take her to his manor.

 

Draco slid his hands underneath her and lifted her up carefully, feeling as he did so the shivers that wracked her body and the overwhelming heat.

 

Great, now he was worried again. Thank you McLaggen for calling certain things to his attention that he would rather have continued to be blissfully unaware of.

 

He vanished the same way he did before and appeared directly into his manor, nearly scaring Luna and a few house elves out of their wits.

 

            “What did you do?” Luna demanded the second her gaze alighted onto Hermione, secure and unconscious in his arms.

 

The house elves peered around Luna to stare at Draco accusingly.

 

            “I didn’t do anything.” Draco said defensively. “She never showed up to work and I went to make sure she was-” okay? Alright? Alive? Coming? He thought quickly “-coming.”

 

Luna lightly touched Hermione’s arm and withdrew quickly.

 

            “Bring her upstairs, we’ll draw her a cool bath and get her settled in.”

 

Draco couldn’t help but pick up on the ‘we’ part of that and perked up a bit.

 

            “Master Draco isn’t allowed to view the miss while we care for her.” One of the house elves clarified. “Luna only meant herself and us female house elves. Just in case master was confused.”

 

He could have sworn the elf was smirking.

 

            “I knew that,” he sneered.

 

            “Just being clear,” the elf squeaked, suddenly sounding scared, “please don’t make me clean Master Blaise’s or young Master Blaze’s room.”

 

Pornography and related things rampant in one room which the house elves detested, and a menagerie of creatures in the others. And the house elves were frightened of Blaze.

 

 

They came onto the landing where Hermione’s bedroom was- or the one she slept in when she crashed there- and walked towards it. Draco was forever amazed at how light she always felt in his arms. This was the longest he had carried her yet. Usually it was just during their fights and he was a bit preoccupied with her temper to notice how it actually felt.

 

            “Just set her on the bed, we’ll handle it from here.” Luna glanced at the clock and frowned slightly. “Zabini just got in a few minuets before you, him and Blaze are asleep. I have to leave soon, I’ll make sure the house elves all know she’s here so they can care for her and you can go back to work.”

 

Draco just nodded and left, knowing better then to argue with her. Luna may be younger and less powerful, but he was obliged to keep her close. She was the only family he had- besides his mother, but that was something he really didn’t want to get into. That and she knew him better then he knew himself, she kept him in line as well as she could, and would be there when things blew up.

 

He suspected that she played with his emotions to make him less domineering and easier to deal with. It didn’t seem to be working as well as it used to though.

 

Draco loitered in the library for the better part of an hour until he heard Luna leaving. As soon as the door shut he headed up to Hermione’s room.

 

As if he was just going to suffer through work while not knowing what was wrong with Granger.

 

He reached the door and fought back the urge to just walk in. He knocked instead, and heard several squeaking voices try and talk him away.

 

            “Is she decent?” Draco asked, rolling his eyes at their replies.

 

            “Yes sir but Luna said she needs plenty of rest-”

 

            “-she doesn’t wish to be bothered-” another said.

 

            “-she’s asleep and needs her quiet-”

 

            “- Master can come in if he wishes-” said still another and a slap followed this making the elf break off in mid sentence.

 

He rolled his eyes again. House elves contradicting and fighting one another over keeping their master out of one of his own rooms. He eased the door open and glanced at the five or so elves loosely surrounding the door and glaring at one another with their small fists raised and wet face cloths wound up ready to snap another with.

 

            “What’s wrong with her?”

 

            “Sick; overworked. She needs to be left so she can rest-”

           

            “Ugh great. You can go,” Draco said, coming inside and opening the door wide for them to leave.

 

            “But Luna said-”

 

Even though they loved Luna, they still couldn’t disobey a direct order from him. Or ignore a threat.

 

            “If there is a house elf left in this room the next time I tell you all to leave I will assign that poor creature to cleaning only Blaze’s room and they will become his personal servant and do nothing else.” He paused to let that sink in “even if Luna orders you, you can’t leave Blaze’s side.”

 

Their bulbous eyes widened. The worst possible threat for them. If Draco offered clothes to free them right then, they would have torn it off his body and fled the manor.

 

            “Now, if the lot of you would leave, I would be most thankful.” In a flurry of small skirts and wet towels the elves scampered out the door like the devil was after them.

 

Draco laughed to himself and turned his attention to the far side of the room. A part of his mind that wasn’t absorbed in the bundled up figure in the bed knew that time was ticking at the Ministry and McLaggen couldn’t hold Senka off forever.

 

But the whole of his mind didn’t care.

 

As he approached Hermione she stirred and opened her eyes blearily. She watched him through hazy eyes and managed a sleepy glare.

 

            “I knew you had house elves.” She said hoarsly.

 

            “Awake for that were you?”

 

She sighed and closed her eyes, “Imagine my surprise, waking up in your manor with my clothes being stripped off. For a moment I thought you might have gotten to me Malfoy.”

 

Draco’s gaze swept over her flushed face and the slight crease in her brow that probably meant she was trying hard not to fall back to sleep again. She looked and sounded delirious as hell. The heavy grilling he had been waiting to give her for doing this to herself was swept away.

 

            “Dream shattered when you saw it was Luna and a bunch of house elves stripping you instead of me?”

 

            “My nightmare ended more like.” She laughed weakly, then coughed and pulled the blankets up to her chin. “You might catch this you know.”  

 

He settled himself on the side of the bed, just inches from her side.

 

            “You can’t take me down. I’m immune to your Mudblood cooties.”  Draco laughed.

 

Her eyes opened and she smiled before she could turn it into a scowl, knowing he was just screwing with her. In her hazed world he was sort of hard to make out, and she couldn’t find the strength to sit herself up.

 

Her eyes shut tightly and she bit her lip and turned her head to one side with a whimper. Draco panicked and took her chin with one hand. He leaned close, trying to hear what she was whispering.

 

            “What is it-? Granger tell me!”

 

He felt a fist around the collar of his shirt pulling him down just as she lifted her head up enough for her lips to reach his. Draco froze, and before he could respond the short kiss was over. Hermione laid her head back down and turned onto her side with her back to him.

 

            “You’re a prat,” she mumbled into the pillows, “And I hope you get sick and are confined to your bed for a week.”

 

And she fell asleep seconds later as the winner of that round, and having no idea of what she had just started.

 

Draco was vaguely aware that she was now in a blissful realm of unconsciousness and withdrew slowly. His hand that had been placed near her head just brushed against her shoulder as he pulled away and he jerked back at the sensation the touch caused.

 

He backed away from the bed as though it were about to explode and licked his lips. He hesitated, his grey eyes widening for a moment before tearing his gaze off her and striding furiously out into the corridor.

 

            “Damn it! Damn it, damn it, damn it!”

 

The house elves were all congregated outside the door “Does Master Draco wish us to-”

 

            “I don’t care!” he yelled wildly, practically running to get away from them. “Just watch- her!”

 

It would go away, he was sure, with time. Whatever was wrong with him- it had to have been just because he hadn’t been with anyone in a while. He just needed a break. And while she was rendered unconscious, he would go out and do something. Get plastered and find someone- anyone. And try really hard to push away that nagging voice in his head that told him to stay. Push away the guilt that was starting to gnaw at him because it felt like he was going behind her back. But how was that possible when they weren’t even involved? Not when they barely knew anything about one another. Their common goal was to keep Blaze happy and safe; it had nothing to do with what he did when she wasn’t around.

 

They kept things as professional and Blaze centered as possible when dealing with one another. They had a common purpose and sometimes clashed with one another because of it.

 

He vanished and reappeared in a dingy alleyway, causing a homeless man to jump in surprise and run off yelling in the opposite direction. He walked until he found a busy street and just stood there.

 

Was he even going to bother to try? What would it prove? That he could do anything he put his mind to, even if it was wrong?

 

He thought he had been good at keeping himself in check, maybe not well enough? Did Granger know what she was doing by making close contact like that and then leaving him to come to his own conclusions that most likely didn’t match hers? He thought for several moments. If he could elope, then she could too. And he knew that despite what he was trying to convince himself, he would be furious if he caught her with anyone else.

 

He didn’t pursue the reason why. It clashed with his past lifestyle that he still stubbornly held onto.

 

Maybe he should just face Luna. She could sort him out.

 

He groaned at the mere thought. He would get a major lecture and then she would really crack down on him. Draco wasn’t oblivious to what she was doing whenever she artfully turned Hermione against him. But what more could she possibly do? Even Granger was trying to get along better, and Luna couldn’t keep an eye on him all the time.

 

His mind went back to his manor, and to her, asleep and completely unbothered by foreign feelings plaguing her.  

 

He thought over what McLaggen had said and half turned back towards the alley from where he came. His emotions were just stemmed from the people he was close to. That was why he was so confused. Blaze was keeping him open for anything; Luna was keeping him under wraps and as far as physically possible from her friend, Granger was keeping him interested because- damn- who wouldn’t like to get a piece of someone who tackles you to the floor? So with all these different people, they were throwing off his emotions.

 

Luna was trying to keep him controlled, Blaze was making him become over protective and bringing out his other side, Granger was bringing out his other side though not in any way that would benefit her- thus uncontrolled. And his best friend Zabini was there to witness his mental struggles and laugh and give him small moments of clarity as to what happened to him.

 

This all swirled about in his mind like the worst hurricane.

 

Screw it. He would go to a bar tonight, pick a fight, and pray to Merlin he would get some sense knocked into him while he beat the hell out of someone. But in the mean time he would go back to his manor and occasionally check on Granger, and spend the day with Blaze.

 

And as for Granger, because she was the root of all of his more pressing problems, he would just see how she would fare when she was capable walking. And he had the perfect opportunity to make her suffer as he was coming up in just another week.

 

If she was aware of his ailment regarding her, then she would know exactly what he was doing and have a better chance of fighting.

 

If not, then she is doing it subconsciously and deserves to be put under duress for putting someone like him in this state of craziness.

 

Draco Malfoy was now waging two completely different wars on two fronts.

 

*          *          *

 

Poor Draco has the crazies!

 

Thought this would be a rather useful chapter to more easily understand that Draco is very good at hiding what he thinks- when he wants to- but seriously doubts himself when people start to pick up on Hermione’s attitude, not his, and starts getting aggressive to cover himself. Which ends up making him so obvious.

 

It was interesting to write all the same.

 

There’s a bunch of people reading but leaving me hanging on the reviews. Does it need something more? Anything you’d like to see? Please tell me, I do love it when you all give me some feedback.

 

 
 
 
 


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There is a reason why there's a path less traveled by...: Coming undone

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