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Chapter 16 : Running
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BAM! Here I am with chapter 16, and it's a wee bit longer than some of the others so I hope you all enjoy. :) I'm finishing up with Fallin' and should get that posted next. *Crosses fingers* I'm a little scared finishing my baby. But, there's a lot more to look forward to with this story, I promise. :)
A HUGE thanks to all my reviewers. You guys keep me going and have become a huge inspiration to me. :)
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.
Malfoy pulled me aboard the train and we grabbed onto the pole directly inside the doors. Someone shoved me from behind, knocking me into Malfoy , who instantly wrapped his arms around me to keep us both from falling. I turned to see who had bumped into me and jumped back into Malfoy.
A man was standing mere inches from me, smiling. His lips pulled back, revealing a row of rotten teeth. I flinched back and turned to Malfoy, his face appeared to be made of stone as he looked at the man. In my peripheral vision, I could see the man making his way to the side of the train before sitting down.
“Well. That was a bit creepy.” I mumbled and Malfoy laughed.
“A bit?” He said, smirking. I couldn’t help but smile in return when I heard the doors slide into place and the train jolted forward. I instantly pulled away from Malfoy and grabbed onto the pole, looking towards the window.
I was going home. Not really, but I was going to see the place I had called home for so many years. The place I’d grown up, lost my first tooth in, received my Hogwarts letter, received my presents from Santa Clause in. I shook my head, fighting back tears. I would never be able to call it home again. In due time, it would be sold to some other muggle family. It would no longer be my home, merely the place I’d grown up in.
“Which stop is it again?” I heard Malfoy ask from behind me.
“I- it’s the third stop.” I said, clearing my throat and attempting to blink away the tears. The train came to a stop and I took a deep breath. Two more stops to go.
Malfoy must have known I was upset, he didn’t seem to want to say much of anything. The train started moving once more and I tried to steady myself and my breathing . This might be the last time I ever see this house. I may never be able to find my parents. Something might happen to me these next few months, who knew when there was a war going on?
Squealing brakes. Only one more stop. My breath was coming in shallow rasps now.
Granger had turned away from me as soon as the train had begun moving forward. I wanted to say something but I knew she was upset. I could hear her taking deep breaths and I wanted nothing more than to comfort her, but I knew she wouldn’t have it.
It was so strange, knowing it was Granger but looking at my mother. It made it comfortable and scary all at once. Something I’d always loved and been comfortable with, and something I’d always found incredible and terrifying all wrapped into one.
The train was coming to a halt once more which meant it was the last stop before we would be getting off. Granger’s breathing was now coming in shallow rasps and I had to do something.
I put my hand on her shoulder and she jumped. She turned around and I could see her eyes were glistening with tears. My mother’s blue eyes were shimmering and her face was more pale than usual. Without thinking, I pulled her in for a hug with my free arm and she wrapped both arms around me.
I stiffened for a moment, completely shocked before relaxing and allowing her to settle in. She buried her face in my neck and began sobbing. I couldn’t pull my other arm away from the pole to place it around her, I was supporting the two of us from falling over.
“Shh. Granger, it’s okay. It’ll be alright. We’ll find him, I’m sure.” I said, trying my best to stay calm. There was a tug on my heart and I suddenly found it hard to breathe. I knew this is what that witch had been talking about. I would feel her pain.
“I- it’s not j- just th-that.” She heaved out, “I-I won’t e-ever see my p-parents again.”
I pulled her back to look her in the eyes, though she refused to look up at me. I tilted her face up with my hand and she reluctantly made eye contact with me.
“Don’t talk like that. You will find them again. You’re brilliant and strong, you’ll survive and so will they.” I said and her breathing slowed slightly. The pulling on my heart lessened slightly and I took a deep breath.
I heard squealing brakes and she looked up, eyes wide. Neither of us had even noticed the train moving this time but when it finally came to a stop, I grabbed her hand and pulled her off. We made our way forward and I could feel her shaking slightly as she led the way up and out of the underground, into the rain.
Because we were now in Muggle London, we couldn’t use the bubble charm so within a minute of walking in the rain, we were soaked.
“Drink.” Malfoy whispered in my ear, causing me to jump.
“What?” I said, looking up at him and blinking tears away as they fell in my eyes.
“The Polyjuice. Drink some.” He said, arching an eyebrow.
I shook my head and reached into the bag, finally finding the flask and pulling it out. I opened it and took a sip, grimacing while doing so. I knew Polyjuice would be one thing I would never care for the taste of. I slipped it back into the bag and we continued walking in silence.
"Why me?" I asked before I could stop myself and I felt Malfoy's body go stiff beside me.
"Not here, Granger." he said calmly.
"Then where? Because I never seem to get the answers when we're back in your manor. So why not away from all that?"
"There's a time and a place for everything, Granger. Now is not the time for that discussion." he said, his voice catching halfway through.
I wondered what nerve I'd struck with him. I never knew what would set him off and yet I couldn't help but want to try and figure out what it was that set him off.
"I think it's a perfect time." I said, turning to look at him.
He stopped walking and I did the same. Taking a step towards me, he drew in a breath and shook his head.
"You are utterly ridiculous. I. Will. Decide. When. It's. The. Proper. Time." he said slowly, emphasizing each word.
Merlin. Granger seemed to know exactly what would tick me off. I couldn't very well delve into why she was here and why I had been so adamant about protecting her in the middle of bloody muggle London.
I wanted to wait until it was something I absolutely felt was absolutely right. The right timing, the right mood. This wasn't it.
"Another time." I said before adding, "please."
I watched as my mother's eyes softened, going from stone cold to something I couldn't quite read in mere seconds.
"You're infuriating, you know that?" she said quietly before turning on her heel and walking away.
"I've been told." I said out loud before I could help myself before running to fall instep right behind her.
I heard Malfoy fall into step behind me a few moments after I'd turned to walk away. I couldn't handle his attitude and his frustrating inability to not be able to tell me anything.
I recognized a street sign as the street that led to my own. Before I could help myself, I took off running.
I walked behind her, my eyes trained on the ground as I did so, not wanting to focus on her anymore than I had to.
I heart a scuffle and glanced up just in time to see Granger disappearing around a corner at a full run.
This woman would be the death of me.
I took off running after her, running around the corner at full speed. A car honked a second later and I avoided being hit by mere inches.
I ran faster than I'd ever run before, chasing the blond hair of my mother who was someone else entirely at the moment.
She turned another corner and was running, if possible, even more quickly than before. We past house after house and when I thought I'd almost caught up to her, she darted down an alley and out of sight.
I ran down the alley but she was nowhere to be seen. I kept running and the alley opened up, revealing a park.
The park was empty. The swings and merry-go-round dripping from the rain. Trees moved in the wind, creating nothing but noise in this desolate place.
I frantically looked for Granger but couldn't figure out where she'd disappeared to. I kept running until I ran by a lake, where I collapsed to the ground, exhausted.
I buried by face into the crook of my elbow and let out an exasperated scream. I glanced around, searching for her once more when I saw it... A cat.
I knew at once that it was Crookshanks. I'd remembered walking by her compartment on the train our third and seeing it's horrible squashed face, wondering what the devil the creature was. She'd been staring at it with a look so full of love, I'd hated it from the start.
It ducked under the branches of a willow tree and I found myself standing up, needing to follow the cat.
I ran towards the tree and took a deep breath before pulling the branches back.
Granger lay there under the tree, curled up in a ball as Crookshanks slowly approached her. She let out a sob when the cat reached her, pressing it's face to her side.
She jumped a foot in the air before reeling back. Crookshanks wasn't phased as he walked towards her yet again.
She let out a squeal and picked the cat up, clutching him to her chest.
"How does he know?" I asked and she looked up at me, her eyes wide.
"Know what?" she asked, looking confused.
"That you're you." I said simply and her eyebrows furrowed together.
"He's always been intuitive. I'm not sure what it is about him. Must be the Kneazle blood." she buried her face in his fur and I felt myself smile upon looking at her happy.
A twig snapped behind me and we both looked to see the old man from the train standing there, wand raised.
BAM! How about that ending?! Who do you think the man could be? What will happen next?! IT'S A MYSTERY!! Until next time, that is. :P Anyways, please please please review?! I'm begging you... I'll give you a cookie... I'm seriously thinking about making something for my fans, but we'll see... REVIEW BECAUSE YOU'RE A WONDERFUL PERSON AND THERE'S A GOODNESS IN YOUR HEART THAT'S SCREAMING "_____ DO IT! LEAVE A REVIEW!!" S2
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