“You girls look absolutely gorgeous! Hermione, I can’t believe how beautiful you are. Pansy as always you look great. And Ginny as well of course, it is lovely to see you again.” My mum gushed at us.
We all beamed at her. She looked sophisticated in a long pure black dress. Her hair was up in a bun that made her look exactly like a high society woman but the bright, content smile on her face warmed the picture.
The four of us headed downstairs all decked out in our amazing outfits. Ginny was in her forest green Grecian style dress with silver high heels. The front of her hair was pulled back in braids while the rest was straight down around her shoulders, her makeup was very natural. She looked every part a Grecian goddess.
Pansy was in her crimson dress with black heels. Her hair was pulled back into a low bun and her makeup was smoky around her eyes with a blood red lipstick. She looked like a girl that men would die to have.
I was in my gorgeous grey dress with similar colored strappy heels. My long black hair was pulled into a side pony tail with the hair curled to perfection. My makeup was smoky around the eyes bringing out the blue of them even more the rest was fairly natural. I was amped up anticipating the moment that I was to be announced as Hermione Zabini.
We had reached the back doors to the ballroom where Blaise and I would enter from. Blaise, our father, Maggie, and Ash were all there waiting for us. Maggie and Ash ran over and gave me a huge hug before running off again to go find their friends. My father was looking at me with strong emotions in his eyes. As though he couldn’t believe I was finally here in front of him.
He walked over to me and gave me a huge bear hug. It felt wonderful knowing how much he loved me. “You look breathtaking Hermione.” He told me as he was pulling away. It brought a mistiness to my eyes that I blinked away quickly.
Blaise let his gaze travel over my friends for a few moments. I noticed that his gaze got caught and lingered on Ginny. I tried to suppress the smirk from forming on my lips. They would make an interesting couple. Harry, I love him to death, seemed to be missing his chance with Ginny. He still seems to be worried about the whole idea of her being his best friend’s sister. Maybe seeing the attention she could be getting from Blaise will make him man up. Or maybe Ginny will move on and Pansy could get with Harry.
I narrowed my eyes at my two friends trying to figure out which guys they should be with. When they saw me looking at them they both gave me questioning looks I just shook my head and smiled at them. They probably thought I was insane but there is nothing new with that.
My father, Pansy, and Ginny all left to the party while my mother went out to announce us. As she was welcoming the guests Blaise finally looked at me and spoke.
“Okay you look great sis but I swear if any of my friends hit on you, check you out, flirt with you or anything I will have to hit them. Or hex them. I am seventeen now. It’s legal and everything.” He was giving me a serious look as though he had no problem beating up a good friend if he looked at his sister the wrong way. I just rolled my eyes at his comment and smacked him on the arm.
I took my chance since he was being quiet to listen to my mum’s speech. “… Today we are not only celebrating our eldest son Blaise’s seventeenth birthday we are also celebrating and welcoming back into our family his twin sister Hermione Zabini. She was given away to a muggle family for her own protection as she was in danger being the female in a set of boy girl twins at that time. Marcus and I have missed her every day since and we without a doubt know that we love her and that she is our daughter. She was in the care of a muggle family and so went to Hogwarts as a muggle-born witch. She was known as Hermione Granger. It is with great pleasure that I welcome Hermione to our life and our family and celebrate both her and Blaise’s birthdays.”
Blaise turned to me once more, “Nervous?”
“…Yes…” I managed to gulp out. He smirked at me and for some reason that familiar expression mixed with the caring light in his eyes made me feel better. I nodded at him and we stepped out into the light of the party.
The ballroom was full of people. Some I recognized, some I didn’t. I searched the crowd while people cheered for us. I found Ron, Harry, and Ginny standing at the front of the group I invited. Neville and Luna were looking adorable arm in arm. Remus and Tonks looked like an amazingly happy family cuddling Teddy in their arms. The entire Weasley family was there and they were all looking at me with some amount of shock on their faces. They have never seen me like this so it was understandable. The only person in that crowd that didn’t look shocked was Gin. She was enjoying the feeling though since I could see the small smile on her face.
I saw Pansy in her red dress out of the corner of my eye standing next to Draco who was standing with Maggie, Ash, my dad, and my mum. His eyes were not on the stage and were instead focused on Remus, Tonks, and Teddy. It took me a second to remember that Tonks was his cousin seeing as Andromeda her mother was a sister to Narcissa and Bellatrix. He was looking at them with a peculiar expression on his face. I couldn’t read it. It seemed a bit sad, maybe wistful? Was it because they are family and yet have barely spoken ten words to each other? Maybe the most normal part of his family, the people who he would probably get along with the best, were standing in the same room as him and yet worlds away from one another. I could speculate about Draco and what is running through his head all night and would still be surprised by something about him. He is something of an enigma.
I shook myself out of my thoughts and looked over at Blaise. He nodded at me once and we both headed deeper into the room. The music started playing as I stepped toward my dad and Blaise went towards our mum. We danced with them for one song and then broke away. I started to head over to my friends when a guy of about twenty –one or so stepped into my path.
“Hello, my name is Lance Parkinson. Welcome to high society life Miss Zabini. Would you care to dance?”
“Are you Pansy’s older cousin?” He smiled and nodded his head in agreement. “She did mention you a couple of times.”
“Nothing bad I hope.” He said with a charming smile on his face. Everything about him that Pansy said seemed to make so much sense. She told me he was a charmer, also that he didn’t believe in the pureblood mania. He seemed perfectly at ease no matter the situation.
“She told me that you are a charmer.”
“And here he is trying his charms on you, leave Hermione alone cousin.” Pansy stated coming out of nowhere to cut off Lance’s reply.
“Ah my dearest little cousin. I wasn’t trying anything on Hermione. I was simply asking the birthday girl for a dance.” He still had that smile on his face as he held his hand out toward me.
“Of course who am I to turn down a dance? It’s fine Pans, I can handle myself, as you well know.” I shared a smile with her as she walked off. She knew what I could do.
I stepped up to him and we danced for a song, we got along well and chatted as we glided across the dance floor. When the song came to a close we separated on a happy note and he made another charming comment about my appearance.
I looked around the room as Lance left to go charm some other girl and found Pansy and Ginny talking next to Harry, Ron, Neville, and Luna. I walked over and greeted them.
“Hey guys. Harry! Ron! Neville and Luna! It is so amazing to see all of you! I missed you all so much.” I started and went around to give them all hugs. After that was done I still saw the shocked looks on Harry and Ron and they were glancing at each other as though they wanted to talk about something. I saw out of the corner of my eye that Neville didn’t seem all that shocked. I guess that stemmed from being around Luna all of the time. I love her and she is the sweetest person ever but after you hang out with her for a time you stop being surprised by things.
“Come on Neville, may I have this dance? I have to dance with all of the guys around my age at least once.” He accepted and I grabbed his arm leading him to the dance floor.
Dancing with Neville was fun; we took the chance to catch up our lives with each other. He told me all about his relationship with Luna. I told him all about my shocking news. This dance also gave Harry and Ron time to calm down while they grilled Ginny with questions.
After the dance with Neville a few other guys my age came over and asked for a dance. I happily agreed playing the part I needed to. Then Fred came over and danced with me followed by his brother. I had a blast with each of them. I swear it is impossible to frown when you are anywhere near one or both of the twins. Fred and George obviously started a train because the rest of the Weasley men followed them all complementing on my appearance. Next up came one of Blaise’s other friends from school Theodore Nott.
He was okay to look at but compared to some of the other guys here this evening he was average. He danced talking lightly for about half the song before he started to get a bit flirty. I didn’t mind too much seeing as I don’t often get so much attention from guys. He was only able to flirt and dance with me for another fifteen seconds, the song was coming to a close, but what really stopped him was Draco tapping him on the shoulder.
“May I cut in?” He drawled in a low voice.
Theo handed me off to Malfoy and we started dancing again as the next song started. He is probably the best dancer out of anyone I’ve danced with this entire night so far.
“So what was all that about? Why did you interrupt Nott and me from our dance?”
He tilted his head toward Blaise indicating the pissed off look on his face. Blaise was then stalking toward Nott obviously with the intention of telling him to stay away from his sister. “Blaise was about to come over here and punch him. I offered the alternative of my cutting in so things wouldn’t go that far.”
I sighed as Draco spoke. That was some quick thinking on his part. For a moment we danced in silence and I looked over at Harry and Ron still standing there talking to one another. It looked as though Harry was trying to talk sense into Ron, as usual.
“I’ll make you a deal…” Draco spoke suddenly.
“What kind of deal?” I was suspicious and rightly so.
“I bet you that I can get Weaslbee over here and cutting in because of jealousy by the end of the next song.” He stated without a hint of being unsure.
“Oh, I doubt that.” Not seeing how it could be possible when Ron hasn’t said one word to me tonight.
“Okay then you should have no problem with this bet. If I get him over here asking to cut in then you have to tell me exactly what was in that present from Ginny.”
I blush scarlet of the thought of telling him what Gin had bought me but I didn’t see how he was going to win. “Fine you’ll never get him over here. I agree, if you fail though you have to drop the subject forever.”
He smirked down at me with pure satisfaction in his eyes. All of a sudden I was worried about him pulling it off. “Let the games begin.” He stated before swinging us around and closer to where Ron and Harry were standing.
I could tell that they noticed us because I could feel they weight of the stares they were giving us.
“You know why did you have to compare me to Potter anyway? I would have preferred some huge muggle movie star that has millions of fans and can get any girl he wants.” I think the whole point of that statement was to make me laugh and he succeeded. I could see him now in the place of some movie star or rock star up on stage with tons of screaming women dying to touch him.
I cracked up of course. And he allowed me a small smile, barely a lift of his lips. Next he did something I wasn’t quite prepared for. He leaned down to whisper in my ear.
“Did I ever tell you how absolutely gorgeous you look tonight?” His voice was smooth as silk. I couldn’t help the small shiver that started at the base of my spine where his hand rested from moving up my back. He knew how to charm someone that was for sure.
A huge smile spread across my lips. I couldn’t help it with that kind of complement from a guy as sexy as him.
“Oh and there are many guys in this room wondering just what it would take for you to allow one of them to ravish you tonight…” He was still whispering in my ear this time his voice took on a husky quality making that shiver span to all different places. This time my smile was smaller, more private. The blush on my cheeks gave everything away though as I tilted my head towards the ground.
I took a breath gathering my wits before replying. “Oh, does that include you Draco?” I looked up at him when I finished speaking seeing a full blown, 100 watt smile on his face. It wasn’t a smirk but the devious glint was still there in his eyes letting me guess at the answer to my question. He looked sexy and dangerous like that. I could help the tiny weakening of my knees.
“I win.” He said confusing me completely. I probably made some vague sound of confusion because he elaborated. “Weasley is heading this way, angry and jealous if I do say so. It seems as though he doesn’t like you smiling at me, blushing because of something I said, and he really doesn’t like me whispering in your ear.”
I looked around and sure enough Ron was headed this way. I had somehow forgotten our little bet in a matter of those few minutes. I was shocked at that. I was glad that Ron had finally decided to come over here until Draco said something else in my ear. “Now you owe me a detailed description of what was in that bag and why you didn’t want us to see it.”
The blush that stained my cheeks was incredibly bright at that moment when Ron tapped on Draco’s shoulder and took ever dancing with me. Draco left with that smirk back on his face and I knew that he was never going to let me forget that I owed him an explanation. I watched him saunter off across the room before turning my attention back to Ron.
“Hi Ron. I was wondering how long it was going to take you and Harry to get used to this.” I got shy all of a sudden. It seemed that Ginny and Pansy were right around Harry and Ron especially I just didn’t seem to be able to be my witty self.
“It is going to take a while Hermione. You look so different.” Ron said. I was the first time he had spoken to me all evening.
“Good different or bad different?” I asked him, my eyes still focused on the ground.
“Just different, you look great, but you looked fine before too.” Ron never did get the hang of compliments. I figured that was the best I was going to get and was fairly happy with it. I allowed a smile to break across my face until his next words. “What were you doing dancing with Malfoy anyway?” This sentence came out quite a bit harsher than his last words.
I pulled an inch further away from him wondering what that was all about when an idea struck me. Was he jealous as Draco said he would be? Could it be possible that Draco really was that good? It seems as though he is if the jealousy gleaming out of Ron’s blue eyes was any indication. I decided reassuring Ron that I had nothing going on with anyone else would be the best course of action.
“I had to dance with him. For this event I have to dance with every guy near my age at least once before my obligations are fulfilled. After that all of the teenagers sneak off to the game room upstairs and have our own party. Or at least that’s what Blaise and our parents tell me.”
Ron grumbled over that news for a minute more before the song ended and Harry stepped up to take his place.
“Hey Harry, how are you taking all of this Ron seemed to be a bit confused by it all?”
“I think it’s great Hermione! As long as you’re happy then I am too. You look wonderful tonight by the way.” He was completely sincere with his words and I couldn’t stop the smile I gave him or the hug I pulled him into. I was just so insanely glad to have him be alright with this.
“Oh, Harry thank you! I was so worried I would end up losing some friends over this!”
“There is no chance of that ‘Mione! We have been through way too much together for me to ever turn my back on you, especially over something that you have no control over.”
I couldn’t help the tear that tracked its way down my cheek. I was so happy and knew exactly why I had always labeled Harry as my best guy friend. We chatted about a few other things while we danced before Harry stiffened and leaned toward me to ask me something.
“That’s Ginny over there dancing with your brother isn’t it?”
I looked around and sure enough Gin was dancing with Blaise and they looked great together. I looked back at Harry to tell him that it was when I saw his face. He was obviously jealous. I smiled to myself thinking maybe this was exactly what Harry needed to get his head out of his arse and sweep Ginny off of her feet before someone else does.
“Yeah Harry it is. They seem to get along well which I am very pleased about seeing as I want both of them in my life.”
He seemed to accept that then frowned again. “But why is she dancing with him?”
“Well Gin does look beautiful tonight. Some guys including my brother have probably noticed that and want to dance with her.”
“Why isn’t she dancing with me then?” Harry asked. He is such a guy sometimes.
“Did you ask her to dance?”
“Well no.” Harry looked even more confused.
“Did you compliment her and let her know you were interested?”
“No not that either.” His frown deepened.
“Then she most likely assumes that you aren’t interested and plans to try and move on from you. You have given her no clear indication that you like her as anything more than a friend or little sister. Do you like her as more than that?” I asked him this time.
He seemed to ponder all of this for a minute more before deciding on an answer. “I don’t know. Sometimes I think that I do but then I think about my friendship with Ron and how it would always be a bit strained after that. Also I’ve seen a few other girls that I could help but be very attracted to recently and I don’t know if I would be noticing them so much if I really liked Ginny you know?”
“Yeah Harry I get what you mean. You just may want to figure it all out and fast before someone else comes along and steals her away.”
“Thanks for the advice Hermione. You’re the best you know that?” He said giving me a kiss on the cheek before we broke away and I went to finish my dances with any other guys.
After about ten or so more dances with different guys I wandered over to Blaise.
“Hey! Now that we have officially danced with all the people we are supposed to can we get out of here?”
“Yes! Please! Let’s just go and say goodnight to Mum and Dad first.” His eyes brightened at the prospect of leaving this stuffy atmosphere.
We went over just as he said and they smiled at us as though they were waiting for this moment all evening.
“We’ve danced with everyone so can we please please please head upstairs?” Blaise pouted at them making all of us laugh.
“Of course, you did as we asked so now you may do what you like. Try to keep things somewhat under control though will you Blaise? Oh, and please settle Maggie and Ash into bed before you go.” My Dad told us. Maggie and Ash would hate to be stuck here but could also not be allowed at our kind of party.
“Of course Mum, Dad! Thank you!” I gave them both a kiss on the cheek and a huge hug.
Blaise grabbed Ash and I tracked down Maggie while spreading the word to break away and head upstairs for the real fun.
When I got to Maggie’s room with her she all of a sudden looked about to cry. “Mags! What’s wrong sweetie?”
“I don’t have any friends! What if no one likes me at Hogwarts and I’m all alone?” She wailed at me.
“Aww hon. That won’t happen because you are amazing but if it did Blaise and Ash would intimidate anyone who dared be mean to you and you could come and have sleepovers with me in my dorm.” I reassured her. This big sister gig was nice I loved caring for others.
“Really?” She asked and I nodded without a second hesitation. “Thanks ‘Mione you are the best and I love you!”
“I love you too Mags! Now off to bed!” I said with a smile as she scampered into her room.
When I stood up and turned around I almost screamed when I came face to face with Draco. I put my hand to my chest and let out a breath trying to calm myself down. “I swear I need to put a bell on you! What do you want anyways?”
“Well Hermione you owe me. I won that bet fair and square.” He spoke without hesitation and I felt my face go bright red.
“Uhm…Do I really have to tell you right now?” I asked him softly.
“Yes, you really do.” He drawled lazily.
“But what if someone walks up here and overhears?” I was trying to find some way out of this.
Draco narrowed his eyes at me for a second before grabbing my arm and pulling me into an empty guest bedroom and closing the door behind us. I was standing with my back against the door and he was only about a foot away from me. I gulped.
“So what did Ginny give you?”
I stood there staring at him and took a few deep breaths wondering how in the world I’m going to do this. After a moment I made a decision. If he really wanted to know so badly then I was going to take control of this situation and not let him have all the fun. This time I was going to make sure that Draco Malfoy is the one who gets flustered. Now that I was determined I steeled myself and looked into his eyes.
“You’re sure you want to know Draco?” At this he just arched an eyebrow and waited for me to continue.
“Alright then, well as I said she gave me a book, ‘The Art of Seduction.’” I started.
“Really Hermione? The best kind of seduction technique can’t be learned from a book you know.” He smirked down at me letting me know exactly what he thought of his own abilities of seduction.
“I wasn’t finished Draco.” I said my voice low.
“Oh? There was more than just a book then?” His curiosity peaked.
“Of course. She gave me the accessories I may need in any good act of seduction.”
“Like?” He obviously wanted me to elaborate.
“Well she gave this black silk and lace nightie that feels like heaven against my skin and guarantees to make the guy want to rip it off of me. She also gave me this amazing black lace bra and matching panties. She even included the garter belt and thigh highs. She made sure I had everything that I would need to bring a guy to his knees.” When I was speaking I know my voice became husky and full of promise. I could also tell that I had Draco’s full attention. He had stepped closer to me in the middle of my explanation and was now looking at me with a completely new level of interest.
“Oh and since you wanted all of the details I feel it’s only fair to let you know that I’m wearing the matching bra and panty set right now under my dress.” I allowed my fingers to glide over the very top of my dress that covered my chest. “Can you imagine it?”
A low growl came from his throat. “Oh I can imagine it quite clearly Hermione. Though I’m sure reality is much better. Care to show me?” His voice was so full of passion and promise it practically dripped with lust.
I shouldn’t have played with fire. Draco has had way more experience at this than I have. No matter what comment I came up with he had something better waiting. My comments while they seemed to get to him a bit didn’t make him speechless or blush. His comment however made my cheeks flame and I had no comeback to offer.
He raised his eyebrow when I didn’t offer any kind of response. “Don’t worry I know you are in love with Weasley and waiting for him to realize it. I promise you he isn’t worth it. Well I guess I could be wrong… but I doubt it. Plus I’m sure Blaise would find us eventually. You screaming my name might give us away. Blaise would then kill me for sleeping with you without offering you a commitment and I don’t much fancy having my best friend murder me.”
I blushed furiously at his comment of my screaming his name because I could imagine it. Draco had the ability to turn me on without even touching me I stifled a shiver and moan at what it would be like to sleep with him. Then I registered the rest of what he said and laughed at the murder comment because Blaise was a bit protective over me…. Okay a whole lot actually.
I rolled my eyes at the man in front of me and turned to open the door. “Come on the Draco. Let’s go to the after party before Blaise finds us and kills you.”
He chuckled as we walked towards the stairs leading down to the game room.
A/N: Hey guys! sorry for the insanely long wait! I have been away from this site and this story for way too long! I hope people are still reading!! I would absolutely love reviews as always. Please let me know what you do or don't like! And let me know if you like Blaise/Pansy and Harry/Ginny OR Harry/Pansy and Blaise/Ginny? I'd love to have ya'lls input! Thank you so much for reading! I hope you love the chapter!!
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