Chapter 20 : Sleepness Nights
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That rat fink bastard! How could he do this to her? She should have known better, why did she ever think he changed so quickly. She should have never trusted him. Ugh, she should’ve known he would go after someone like Gwen, or better yet, she should’ve known Gwen would go after him. That blonde bimbo slut. She should’ve hexed her until her hair fell out or grew warts and turned her skin green like the real witch she is.
She tossed and turned on her queen size bed in her bed…her old bedroom. Tears all dried out. She became even more pissed and angry at Draco, because she came to the horrifying conclusion that she couldn’t even sleep without the bloody bastard next to her.
A new batch of tears formed in her eyes. Damn it, why her, why did he have to go and kiss her? Damn it, where was her pickle ice cream when she needed it?
When she became all cried out and realized sleep wasn’t going to happen, she sat up in bed and looked around her old childhood bedroom. It looked almost exactly the same as she saw it last, before she got on the train that took her to Hogwarts for her last year of school. Hogwarts and Gryffindor banners and posters covered her walls. She noticed her school trunk at the end of her bed. Pictures; muggle and magical moving pictures of her friends hung on the walls and sat on shelves on her bookcase.
A stack of old textbooks lay in a neat pile next to her small white wicker desk that matched the headboard of her bed. A picture of her and Draco sat on the nightstand. They looked sicken-ly happy together. She huffed out a sigh. Young and in love, what a load of flubber worms.
She out of bed and went over to her closet. When she pulled it open she noticed that she had all of her school uniforms from the previous years. Why she kept them all, she had no idea. She found her very first uniform from first year. It was hanging up in the back. She took it out and looked at it. It was so tiny, she couldn’t believe it was so little, that she was so little back then.
She smiled remembering the first time she stepped inside Hogwarts. She was so excited and a little nervous at the same time. She was surprised she hadn’t burst back than from all the excitement and nerves she experienced that day. And in less than eleven years, Crissy will be attending Hogwarts for the first time wearing a similar uniform. She put the uniform back in the closet. She wanted to change her clothes, but she knew that nothing in her closet or dresser would fit her anymore, knowing her belly continued to grow a little bit each day. She put her hand over her rounded stomach and felt the tiny flutter beneath her fingertips as her baby boy kicked.
She sighed; maybe she overreacted when she saw Gwen and Draco together. Maybe he was telling the truth and she came on to him. But then again Gwen is blonde and gorgeous and any man would want to go after her, while she is just plain and mousy, there wasn’t much competition.
She sighed again. Regardless Gwen is a bitch, who knew Draco was married and yet she went after him anyway. Normal responsible people don’t do things like that. Maybe she should go back to the house, she couldn’t sleep here, the house was too quiet and she didn’t like it.
And she never got to say goodnight to Crissy before she left…no, she left to have some space. Space she could probably use. Besides it wouldn’t hurt to have Draco take full responsibly over Crissy and the house for one night. Besides he got to have his one night away, after he heard about his father. So she should be allowed to have hers.
Now what could she do to pass the time? Her mother did tell her to start packing up the house, so they could put stuff in storage and sell the house. Another wave of sadness hit at the thought of selling her childhood home. She looked around her room once again. She grew up here. There were even markings on the doorjamb of how tall she had grown each year, starting when she was only two years old.
But in a way this wasn’t her house anymore, it was her parents’ house. And knew they decided to move to Florida permanently. She left her bedroom and went down stairs to the living room. Maybe she could start there with the packing.
Once she got to the living room and looked around, she realized that packing was going to be a lot harder than she thought. She walked over to the mantle and noticed even more pictures. A couple of her with her mum and dad, and a few of her when she was younger. There was one of her and Draco at their wedding, and a couple of Crissy. She decided to start there. She took them off the mantle and set them in a neat pile on the coffee table. Obviously the pictures were going to be in the ‘keep pile.’
Next she turned to the bookshelf. Where there were books of all genres, nearly all of them were muggle classics as well as some romance novels her mother enjoyed so much, and a few crime novels her dad liked. On one shelf were books and textbooks on dentistry. Her father liked to collect anything he could find on his profession. Thankfully all he liked to collect were books and other references to the history of dentistry instead of actual dental instruments like drills and scalpels from the early 1900’s. Hermione shuddered at that thought.
This was going to be harder than she thought, if it were up to her she would keep everything, but then again she wasn’t called a bookworm for nothing. She has been known to never throw away any book she has owned.
She walked over to the small writing desk they had against one of the walls and rooted around in the drawers until she found an old notebook and a pen to write with. The easiest and most organized way to do this is to make an inventory list of everything they had, and then she could sort it all into different categories or piles as it were. But still the question was, what was she going to sell or get rid of and what was she going to keep besides the photographs?
She found a camera in the desk as well, which was perfect. It was a muggle digital camera so she didn’t need film or anything to get it to work. And to be extra efficient she could make a list of all the items as well as take pictures of each item. That way she could send the pictures to her parents and make them decide what they wanted to do with each item. Since right now it seemed like every item had some kind of sentimental value to it.
She started to make a list of all the books on the shelf as well as the bookcase itself, and then took a picture of each shelf making sure that all the titles of the books were clearly visible in each shot. The books were still a mystery, one she didn’t know which pile or category to put them in. And the bookcase, well she was going to put that in the keep pile, because one could always use a sturdy bookcase.
All pictures and photo albums automatically went into the keep pile. The furniture in the room again was something she wasn’t sure of, but she still categorized them and took pictures.
She ended up making another list, one of all the things she was unsure of, things she needed to consult with her parents first before making a final decision. She thought it would be easier, making a list and piles of things but, it was becoming a bit OCD and if she wasn’t careful it would become an even bigger mess then what she started out with. Normal people probably wouldn’t make a list of every single thing a person owned as well as take a picture of every single thing, but she felt that if she didn’t then it would mess up her whole system…and then she would have to start over, which would be good.
Once she finished the living room she moved on to the kitchen. She ended up having to throw out most of the food that was left over. Of course her parents didn’t leave anything perishable in the house, but what was left over had either expired or had gone stale.
She made a list of all of the dishes and flatware including the fine china that had been pasted down in her mother’s family for years, of course that was going into the keep pile. She went into the garage and found an empty box and some old newspapers she could use to help pack. She went back into the kitchen and started carefully packing the china into the box. Once she finished that she levitated the box and gently put it in the keep pile in the living room.
She managed to get the first floor of the house finished, except for the garage that would have to be left for another day. She sat down on the sofa in the living room and went over the lists and notes she made, which took up almost two whole notebooks worth of paper.
She should’ve been tired, but she wasn’t. She was restless. There was always the upstairs that needed to be done, but she didn’t feel like doing more packing and categorizing. Besides she needed to take a break, there was no sense in overexerting herself.
She rubbed a hand over her stomach. It didn’t help that she was starving. The Chinese food that she left splattered on the floor of the kitchen after she found Draco and Gwen was a long lost memory. The food left over at her parents’ house was…well less to be desired. The only things left that were edible were canned items, like canned beans and canned ham. Being pregnant and all, she’s the first to admit, that she had pretty bizarre tastes in food, but the idea of canned beans and ham just left her feeling nauseous.
Her parents did leave a car, but her father had dismantle the battery or some other such nonsense and she didn’t know much about cars to put it back together and besides she doubted anything would be left open at this hour of the night. Damn it she was hungry. Ugh she didn’t want to do it, but she didn’t see any other way.
She took a deep breath, “Ziggy.”
A pop sounded to her left. “How may Ziggy help Mrs. Hermione?”
Ugh Hermione felt awful, this was everything she fought against concerning house elves. “I’m so sorry to call you so late Ziggy.”
“Tis okay. Ziggy wasn’t busy.”
“Well the thing is, I seemed to skip dinner and well I’m a bit puckish and I can’t find anything to eat here. Is there any way you could fix something for me?” she asked Ziggy feeling embarrassed. “I know it’s extremely late and I really apologize if you were sleeping. And I wouldn’t have asked if it wasn’t an emergency.” Ziggy waited patiently while Hermione continued her ranting. “Anyway I would really appreciate it and I would be eternally grateful.”
Ziggy smiled. “Of course what would Mrs. Hermione like for Ziggy to make?”
“Taco’s” Hermione replied sheepishly.
Ziggy winked at Hermione and then popped out of sight. Ten seconds later Ziggy popped back holding a plate full of tacos.
“Oh bless you Ziggy. Thank you so much.” she told the house elf, taking the plate from her.
“Anything else Mrs. Hermione requires of Ziggy?”
“No thank you…or actually there is one tiny thing. Can you pop over to the house and check on Crissy, make sure she’s okay?”
“Of course, would you like Ziggy to check on Master Draco as well?”
“Oh, um well…” Hermione paused did she really want to know what he was doing? “I suppose that would be alright, but don’t let him see you.”
Ziggy nodded and then popped out of sight again.
Hermione took a bite from a taco and moaned in pleasure. Ziggy made the best tacos ever. A couple minutes later and two tacos later Ziggy popped back in.
“Little Miss Crissy is fast asleep in her crib. And Master Draco is pacing in the living room. He looks distraught, though Ziggy don’t know why.”
“I see, well thank you for checking on them Ziggy. That’s all for now. Get some rest and I’ll see you later.”
“Thank you Mrs. Hermione.” Ziggy bowed then popped out of the room leaving Hermione once again alone.
A heavy weight set in the pit of her stomach. Good Draco should be distraught; he had every right to be. Then why was she feeling so bad about it?
Draco couldn’t sleep, after tossing and turning for an hour he gave up and went to the living room to watch some TV. Nothing on it caught his interest so he started pacing. This was ridiculous, he couldn’t sleep, and he couldn’t eat. If this was what it was like to be in a relationship then he wanted out. Who would possibly want to put up with this all of the time? Because he was certain this wouldn’t be the only row that they would get into, since they were always arguing about something or another.
Merlin, why was he even getting angry…it was his fault Hermione left, his fault that Hermione got hurt, his fault he let Gwen kiss him. If he was going to be angry, it was going to be at himself. He sat down on the sofa with a thud, and raked his hands through his hair just as Ziggy popped into the room.
“So how is she?” Draco asked her with his face in his hands.
“Mrs. Hermione is eating tacos that Ziggy made for her. And Ziggy did as you asked and didn’t tell her that you saw me.”
Draco caught Ziggy spying on him and he managed to get her to fess up that Hermione sent her to check on them. He asked Ziggy to do the same for him and check on her.
“Good Ziggy but how is she? Did she still seem upset?”
“No Mrs. Hermione seems okay, tired but okay.”
“So where is she exactly?”
Ziggy looked at the ground, shuffling her feet. “I don’t think Mrs. Hermione wants Ziggy to tell you.”
“I won’t tell her you told me anything. You won’t get in trouble.” He swallowed then gritted. “Please.”
“Promise Ziggy won’t get in trouble?”
“Of course you won’t get in trouble Ziggy. I promise.”
“Mrs. Hermione is at the Grangers house.”
He let out a breath. “Thank you Ziggy, you may go.” Ziggy blinked out of sight.
He had no idea where there house was other than the fact that it was somewhere in England. Not that he planned on going there. He gave Hermione his word that he wouldn’t disturb her. That he would give her space. But at least she was safe…and hungry. She couldn’t be that upset if she was chowing down on tacos. He allowed a small smile to appear on his lips. She loved eating tacos that one.
He leaned back in the sofa and pinched the bridge of his nose. He had to figure out what the hell he was going to do. He already decided he was going to stay playing for the Bats. Playing for the Cannons would have been a great opportunity, but he just couldn’t do it. Not with a family, not that having a family was holding him back. He just felt better staying with the Bats. It was a gut instinct and he always followed his gut instincts.
But now he had to figure out what he was going to do with Gwen. The obvious answer would be to fire her. Hermione would probably never forgive him if he didn’t fire her. But then who would he get to replace Gwen? Her father who used to be his manager had gone into retirement. And well he didn’t want to cause anymore drama by keeping it in the family as it were. He rubbed at his eyes he was too tired and frustrated to think about any of this now.
Just then he heard a soft fussy noise coming from Crissy’s bedroom, which meant Crissy was awake. Draco stood up from where he was sitting on the sofa and stretched before heading to the door leading to Crissy’s nursery.
He cracked the door open and peaked inside, just in case he was mistaken and Crissy wasn’t awake. But sure enough she was. She was standing on her own peeking out over the top of her crib. Her curly mop of hair sticking out in all directions from sleep. She clutched the tail of her stuffed dragon in one hand, while the other gripped the top rail of her crib for support. Her chubby baby fat cheeks were flushed and tear stained.
“Aw, Princess what’s the matter?” He walked over to her crib, the soft glow of her night light helped illuminate the way.
“Dada.” She reached up as he got closer.
He did as she silently asked and picked her up and held her close. She took her dragon ‘Gaga’ with her and nestled in close to Draco. He did all the necessary checks one was supposed to do when a young baby was fussy. No need for a diaper change, no fever or any other signs of sickness, and he didn’t think she was hungry since she ate all of her dinner only a couple of hours ago. But just in case he carried her out to the kitchen and prepared a bottle of mile for her.
They walked back towards the nursery. When they got to the door Crissy pointed down the hallway towards Hermione’s and his bedroom.
Draco sighed. “I’m sorry Princess she’s not here.” He could see the tears well up in her eyes and her bottom lip start to tremble.
“Oh no sweetheart don’t do that. Mama will be home real soon.” He told her hugging her closer and rubbing her back. Even if I have to drag her back myself, he thought to himself.
Tears were falling fast and hard now. She cried into his shoulder leaving a wet spot on his t-shirt. He walked into the nursery and sat down on the rocking chair that was in the corner of the room. Oh what was that muggle song Hermione always sang to her to calm her down at night? He couldn’t remember, not that it would help anyway if he did, because he couldn’t sing or carry a tune to save his life.
Merlin it broke his heart to see her cry like this, and he had no idea what to do to make it stop. Out of desperation he ended up humming a Weird Sisters song he heard Blaise playing in their dormitory before he and Hermione ended up here.
Crissy stopped crying and looked up at him with her big bright brown eyes. He didn’t know the words but he knew the melody well enough, so he went with it. Crissy grabbed her stuffed dragon and hugged it to her chest as she snuggled into his arms as he rocked back and forth in the rocking chair.
Within minutes her eyes fluttered shut and she became sound asleep. He continued rocking back and forth not wanting to make any sudden moments and wake her up again.
He still couldn’t believe that she was his. This beautiful tiny little bundle was his. He didn’t love anything except maybe his own mother, but other than her he didn’t do love. But Crissy absolutely stole his heart, and he couldn’t imagine loving anything more than her.
He just sat there and watched her sleep. Merlin but she looked just like Hermione, from her wild crazy hair, to the turned up tip of her nose. Even her eyelashes were like Hermione’s, thick and long. Long enough to brush along the tops of her cheeks as she slept.
After about an hour or so his arm began to fall asleep so he as gently as possible go up from the chair and laid Crissy down in her crib. He didn’t feel like leaving to go to bed himself so he quietly sat back down in the rocking chair and listened to Crissy breathing. But soon his own eyelids betrayed him and he too fell asleep.
Hermione woke up with a horrible crick in her neck, she glanced at the clock on the mantle, and it was five thirty in the morning. She must have fallen asleep on the sofa after her late night dinner that Ziggy provided.
She sat up and looked around the living room. Merlin what a mess, she had made piles of stuff all over the living room. What had she been thinking when she had tried to organize and pack everything, when she been restless and couldn’t sleep.
Was it too early to go back home? She would give anything to have at least another hour of sleep on her…um their king size pillow top mattress. Hopefully Draco will have practice again today so she could avoid him for a bit, while she tries to sort everything out a bit more.
She was hungry again, but she already knew there was no food, at least any that she found edible to her liking in the house. She’ll just have to wait until she got back to eat.
Searching around the house to make sure she got everything, not that she brought anything with her when she got here last night. She walked out the house through the back door and made sure it was locked up tight. She was about to walk towards the center of the yard where she could apparate when a certain flower…or weed bush caught her eye.
Of course how could she have forgotten? She planted a small bush of fluxweed the summer of her sixth year, knowing Harry would go on the search for Horcruxes. And she planted the bush so they could have an ample supply to make Polyjuice potion since fluxweed wasn’t always the easiest ingredient to come by.
She couldn’t believe after all of these years it still existed. She was sure it would have either died, from her lack of gardening skills or her mother would have plucked it out, mistaking it for an actual weed.
Of course she couldn’t take a few stems now, because it has to be cut or harvested on the night of a full moon when it’s in full bloom for the potion. She’ll have to look on the calendar to see exactly when the next full moon will be and then make sure to come back and get it.
Thinking of Polyjuice ingredients, she still needed leeches. She shivered; this was her least favorite part other than drinking it. Leeches always freaked her out, even more than de-flubbing flubber worms.
There was a small pond just beyond the fence at the far end of their backyard. She knew there were leeches in it, because when she was about four, she and her dad crossed the fence wanting to see the ducks play in the water. Her dad let her stick her feet in. She remembered the bottom of the pond being cold and slimy with muck. She had only been standing in it for no more than five minutes and when she stepped out; she had at least three leeches stuck to her skin.
The scariest part was when her father had to burn them off with a lit match. Since then she had never stepped foot into the pond again.
She walked back into the house and into the garage where she knew her mother had a whole box of empty mason jars for when she tried to make a hobby of making her own jams and jellies. Needless to say, her hobby didn’t last long.
She grabbed a couple of jars and went back outside once again locking up the house and making sure the wards she had set were back in place.
The sun was just starting to give off more light, making the early fog disappear. She made her way across the yard and to the pond. Once she got there, she was a bit disappointed; the pond didn’t seem as big as she remembered. But hopefully there would still be the slimy little blood suckers in there.
Standing at the very edge of the pond, she squatted down and scooped some water into the jar, then took out her wand.
“Accio leeches,” she said with a flick of her wand.
She kept doing that until she had five leeches in her jar. Making sure the lid was on tightly she walked back to the yard and apparated home.
Draco woke up early; his entire body ached from sleeping in the rocking chair. Crissy was still sound asleep in her crib. The sun was barely peaking up over the horizon. He quietly left the nursery, trying not to wake Crissy.
He looked down the hallway towards their bedroom. His body craved to sleep a few more hours on the soft mattress, but his brain was still running a mile a minute.
He walked into the kitchen and started the coffee maker, another muggle devise that he was learning to like a lot. From the silence of the house he took it that meant Hermione had not yet returned.
Once he managed to get a full cup of coffee into his system, he grabbed a piece of parchment and a quill…or um pen and began to write a letter to Gwen informing her that her services as his manage are no longer needed and that she is officially sacked.
He thought about sending her a howler, but thought better of it. He had his owl send it right away. He probably should have fired her in person, but he didn’t want to see her again, especially since it would most likely upset Hermione.
Merlin, where was she. It was almost six in the morning and she still hadn’t returned. He filled up another cup of coffee for himself, and then leaned against the counter staring into the dark brown liquid when he heard a pop.
He jerked his head up and looked at this wife as she apparated in. He set down the mug so hard the hot liquid sloshed over the side and onto the countertop.
She looked at him surprised. “Oh, I didn’t think you would be awake.”
He shrugged. “Couldn’t sleep.” He told her simply walking over to grab a towel to wipe up the spilled coffee.
A silent awkwardness settled over them. Hermione stood in the middle of the kitchen, looking unsure as she bit her lip and looked down at the floor. He wanted so badly to just walk over to her, take her in his arms and kiss her until everything was forgotten between them and she melted into his body. But he didn’t want to push it, knowing she was still furious with him.
“Um is Crissy up yet?” she asked him.
“Oh.” Was all she said then went back to looking at everything but at him.
They both said at the same time.
Draco smirked and gestured towards her. “You go first.”
She took a deep breath. “I’m sorry about last night. I overreacted and I should have trusted you more.” She bit her lip. “I’m sorry I hit you.”
Draco was stunned, he wasn’t expecting her to apologize to him, hell he was mentally bracing himself in case she lashed out again with her wrath.
“No Hermione you don’t have to apologize. You had every right to react the way you did. I’m the one, who’s sorry, it’s my fault, and I messed up. I shouldn’t have let it happen; I should’ve made her leave or pushed her away.”
He looked so sincere Hermione really believed him or she really wanted to.
“I’m sorry.” He told her again taking a step towards her.
It took everything in her to stay put where she was and not move a step back away from him or take a step forward and into his arms. “It’s okay.” She said quietly. “Just as long as we’re here, don’t let it happen again.”
“Okay.” He took another step towards her closing the gap.
She tensed and again made herself stay put. His hand reached up and cupped the side of her face, his thumb grazed along the soft skin below her eye. His eyebrows bunched together, he looked just as tense as she felt.
“Did I do this to you?” He asked her, knowing he was talking about the dark circles beneath her eyes.
She shrugged. “I couldn’t sleep.” Mimicking what he told her earlier and not exactly answering his question.
He didn’t remove his hand from her face; instead he started to weave his fingers through her hair. “I’m glad you came back.” He whispered and leaned in.
Hermione turned her head at the last minute dodging his kiss that was meant for her lips, making him kiss her cheek instead. She mentally cursed herself. She told herself she was over it and that she forgave him. But when she thought of him kissing, all she could think of and see was him kissing Gwen instead of her.
If he was surprised or shocked that she avoided his kiss he didn’t show it. He took a step back giving her space. Another awkward silence fell around them.
“Um how was Crissy last night?” she asked him turning towards the refrigerator to grab something to eat and also to have something to do, other than stand there while he stared back at her.
“She was fine. Only woke up once in the middle of the night.”
“Was she okay?”
“Yeah. I just made her a bottle than sat with her in the rocker until she fell back asleep.”
“Oh well that’s good.”
“She asked for you, I think she knew you weren’t here last night.”
“Really? Why didn’t you tell me, I would’ve come back.”
“Really? You would have come back if I told you. Even though you were mad at me?”
She nodded. “If she needed me, yes.”
Before another awkward silence descended on them he blurted out. “I fired her.”
“What?” she asked not quite understanding what he was trying to say.
“Gwen. I fired her. So you don’t have to worry about her anymore.”
“Oh. Do you think that’s a wise decision?”
“I thought that’s what you would’ve wanted me to do?”
“Yeah, but what about your career? Won’t it affect it if you’re without a manager?”
“I can always get a new manager. It’s not that big of a deal.”
“But what about your offer to play for the Cannons? Without Gwen will you still have that opportunity?” She asked him, but why was she defending that woman?”
“Bloody hell Hermione, I thought you would be happy that I sacked her.” He told her running a hand through his hair.
“I am. I just don’t want you to destroy your career over this.”
“So you rather I keep her on, give her, her job back so she can continue to be in my life?”
“No! I mean…ugh I don’t know. I don’t ever want to see that woman again, but I don’t want you to destroy your career over this either.”
“I’m so relieved that you think so highly of my quidditch abilities that you think I need her to be successful.” He told her sarcastically.
“That’s not what I meant.” They were getting nowhere with this.
“I’m sure my career will be just fine without her. And besides I told you I can get a new, different manager. In fact I was thinking maybe I can ask Blaise to fill in temporary or full time if he’s interested. He loves that kind of stuff. And he knows all about the quidditch world, hell he probably knows more about it then I do.”
“But what about the Cannons offer?”
“It doesn’t matter. I’m staying with the Bat’s.”
Hermione gasped. “Are you sure? Playing for the Cannons would be a huge opportunity.”
“If I was a young single bachelor, then sure I would take it. But I’m not. And I like the Bats. It’s a good team. And with them, I’ll be able to come home and sleep in my own bed every night. With the Cannons I would have to stay in a tiny apartment and only come home for a couple of days a week if I’m lucky.”
Hermione nodded and sighed. “I just don’t want you to regret it or resent down the road.”
“I won’t.” he told her.
“Okay. So…how did she take it? When you fired her?”
“Um.” He rubbed that back of his neck with his hand, he looked almost sheepish, embarrassed even. “Um well I don’t know exactly. I fired her in a letter. I sent it just before you got here.”
She put her hands on her hips and stared at him. “You fired her in a letter? That’s pretty cruel.”
“Would you rather I do it in person, her and me alone in a room together?”
Hermione cheeks flushed. “No I guess not.” She grumbled.
“That’s what I thought.”
Hermione walked towards the kitchen table.
“What’s that in your hand?” He asked her.
“No, in your other hand, what’s in the jar?”
She looked down and grimaced. Merlin how could she forget about those? “Leeches.”
“And what do you need leeches for?”
“The Polyjuice potion.”
“There are leeches in the Polyjuice?”
She nodded. “They won’t be whole. I have to grind them up before adding them to the potion.”
Draco made a face. “Yeah because that’s so much better.” He said sarcastically.
She rolled her eyes. “You won’t even know they’re in there once you drink the potion.”
“Why am I the one drinking the potion again?”
“Because you volunteered, because you know Knockturn alley better than I do and you didn’t want me to do it because it’s too dangerous and it might hurt the baby.”
“Oh yeah, right.” He ran a hand through his hair making it stick out in all directions.
“Relax you still have a month before you need to freak out about anything.”
He rolled his eyes at her, “Ha-ha.”
Just than a soft crying sound came from the hallway.
“I’ll get her.” They both said at the same time.
They chuckled at their ridiculousness. “You go ahead.” He motioned her to go.
“Okay.” She set the jar of leeches on the counter.
“But take those with you…or put them somewhere where I can’t see them.”
She rolled her eyes at him and picked up the jar and sauntered out of the room. He watched as she walked away towards the nursery. It was completely mad how happy he felt now that she was back home. As stupid as it sounded, but it felt like he could breathe again, which was ridiculous, he had been breathing just fine without her here before. And he didn’t even want to think about how much it hurt, when she turned her face away when he tried to kiss her earlier.
A tapping noise was coming from the window above the kitchen sink, a large sliver owl stood just outside with a letter in its beak. It was an owl he didn’t recognize.
Great, it was probably Gwen with a response to his earlier letter, he thought. He opened the window and accepted the letter from the owl. Giving her an owl treat before letting her take off. He opened the letter, if it was Gwen she sure used fancy expensive parchment, especially if it was only to tell him off. Except it wasn’t from Gwen, it was worse. His mother.
My Dearest Draco,
I would love you to join me for dinner at the Manor tonight. I have some very important issue to discuss with you. Please bring Hermione and my daring granddaughter Cristina. If tonight is unmanageable please let me know at your earliest convenience and we’ll make another date. If not I’ll see you and your family at 4:30pm for tea then dinner afterwards.
Love your mother, Narcissa.
Businesslike and straight to the point, just like his mother. Even an invite for dinner has to be professional and well mannered. He didn’t think his mother ever let her hair down and had fun every now and then. Of course now the issue’s going to be, how was he going to get Hermione to agree to this? Memories of what his family did to her six years ago, hell a year ago with his father, probably weren’t going to convince her to come willingly.
Hermione walked back into the kitchen after changing Crissy. Crissy was still really groggy so she decided to leave her in her pj’s until after breakfast. Which was really a win; win because with any luck then she wouldn’t have to wash a different set of clothes today, since right now Crissy isn’t the daintiest of eaters.
Hermione handed her over to Draco, who then put her in her highchair after giving her a smacking kiss on the cheek and a raspberry on the belly resulting a squeal of delight from Crissy.
Hermione walked to the refrigerator and pulled out some food items for Crissy. They were going to try whole fruits today instead of mushy baby food. She grabbed some grapes, a banana and a peach. Along with some dry cereal. She put a handful of cereal onto the tray of her highchair and a bottle, while she cut up the fruit into tiny bite size pieces.
Once Crissy finished eating Hermione picked her back up trying not to get any of the sticky fruit juices that covered the front of Crissy’s pj’s. Sometimes baby bibs don’t always catch every spill or drop.
“Shouldn’t you be getting ready to leave?” Hermione asked Draco who was busy reading the Daily Prophet and eating a bowl of cereal.
“Hmm?” he looked up at her.
“Don’t you have practice today?”
“Nope I have the next couple of days off.”
“Oh good.” She smiled halfheartedly, as she walked to the nursery to change Crissy.
When she came back out Draco was on the sofa flipping through channels. “So what do you want to do today?” he asked her as she set Crissy down in her play pen.
“Um, well I was hoping, wanting to take a nap for a couple of hours, and since you’re here all day you can watch her, maybe you can take her to the park. You know how much she loves to watch the ducks?”
“Um sure. Are you feeling okay?” he asked her looking concerned.
“Yeah, I’m fine, just tired, I didn’t get much sleep last night.”
“Okay, yeah go lay down for a bit. But make sure you’re ready and dressed by four o’clock.” He told her turning back to the TV.
“Why what’s at four o’clock?”
“Well at 4:30pm we’re meeting someone for dinner.”
“Who are we meeting and isn’t 4:30 a bit early for dinner?”
“Well we’re having tea first, then dinner.”
“Okay, but with who?” she asked, starting to get suspicious, he was starting to act weird, why wouldn’t he just tell her who they were meeting for dinner?
“Um well my mother invited us for tea and dinner tonight…at the manor.”
It felt like her heart just stopped. “What?”
“We’re having dinner tonight with my mother.”
“At the Malfoy Manor?” she asked him, mortified that her voice sounded shaky.
“Do I have to go?” she knew it sounded childish but she really didn’t want to go.
“She requested your presence.”
“Really?” he nodded again. “How long have you known about this?”
He shrugged. “I got the letter this morning when you were getting Crissy up.”
“Why didn’t you tell me this then?”
“Because I’m telling you now.”
“Ugh I’m going to lay down now.” She stomped away, she want to talk about this anymore and she didn’t want to think about it.
“Well that went well.” Draco told Crissy who was playing with her stuffed dragon.
“Gaga,” she squealed holding out said dragon towards him to play with her.
Either Hermione was still mad at him, or she was still sleeping, because she hadn’t come out of the bedroom all day. She skipped lunch and didn’t even stir when he snuck into the room to change clothes before taking Crissy to the park to play.
Well now it was closing in on 4:00pm and she hadn’t emerged from the bedroom. He managed to get Crissy dressed in something that wasn’t covered in applesauce and walked into the bedroom. The curtains were still closed and the lights were still off.
He walked over to her sleeping form; if she wasn’t snoring softly he would have thought she was faking it. He reached out and lightly shook her shoulder, trying not to startle her too much.
“Hermione?” she shook her again, she barely twitched in her sleep.
He ended up sitting on the side of the bed next to her. He leaned over and set Crissy down in the middle of the bed, then turned back to Hermione. He leaned in close so he could whisper in her ear.
“Hermione? Time to get up.” And since he was so close to her and the smell of her skin and hair were so intoxicating that it drew him in closer as if it was some sort of magnetic pull.
He kissed that spot just below her ear, a spot he knew could drive her crazy. Then slowly, because he was helpless against it, made his way over her jaw until he came to her lips. She sighed, but still remained asleep. So he kissed her again, this time a bit deeper. He continued to do so until she started to kiss him back. She started off with slow soft kisses, and then opened her mouth so he could slip inside. He knew she was really starting to wake up when he hand came up to tangle into his hair and pull him closer to her. If she was still mad at him, it definitely didn’t seem that way now.
Before he totally forgot where they were and who was watching them aka Crissy, and where they needed to be soon. “Hermione…mmm…we need to…mmm…get…mmm…going, ah hell.”
One of her hands snuck inside his trousers.
With great regret he grabbed hold of her wrist and pulled her hand free. “Hermione sweetheart you need to wake up, it’s time to go.”
“It’s time to get up.”
“What?” her eyes flew open.
Damn she was having the incredible dream and of course she woke up before anything good happened. Her eyes focused and she noticed Draco practically lying on top of her, his hair all askew. Oh maybe it wasn’t a dream. He was speaking to her, but she wasn’t paying attention.
“You need to get ready. It’s time to go.”
Go? Then it came back to her, and she noticed Draco dressed in a light gray button down shirt and dark gray trousers both perfectly pressed. And Crissy who was sitting in the middle of the bed looking at them like they were nuts, wearing a cute little pink dress.
Oh god, did she just have her hand down his pants? His hand still held her wrist, as her fingers laid dangerously close to his unzipped trousers.
“Maybe later sweetheart, but now’s not a good time for that.” He smirked.
Her gaze flew to his face and her face heated so much she could feel sweat pebbling down the back of her neck. Not that he seemed all that upset that she practically molested him.
“Can’t I just stay here instead? Tell her I’m not feeling well.”
He let go of her hand and smirked at her. “And are you feeling unwell?”
“Does embarrassment count as a sickness?” she mumbled.
“Nope. And you have no reason to be embarrassed. If we didn’t have a prior engagement and if our daughter wasn’t in the room, then I would’ve gladly stripped down naked and have you fondled me until your heart’s content.” He winked at her.
“Oh god.” She rolled her eyes, face flaming, she ripped the covers off her, shoving Draco away so she could get up. “Fine I’ll get ready, but I’m going under protest.” She hightailed it to the bathroom to get ready.
She brushed her teeth and washed her face. She quickly braided her hair into a single braid down her back and slapped on some simple makeup, just enough to make her look alive and not like she just slept the day away. Wearing a robe she left the bathroom to go to the closet. Draco was still in the room. He lay on his side on the bed playing with Crissy.
“What are you still doing in here?”
He looked up at her, “What do you mean?” he asked.
“You should go get Crissy’s diaper bag ready or something.”
“I already did that.”
She stepped into the closet and started looking through all her dresses. “Did you put everything into it? Like an extra set of clothes, blanket, pacifier, extra bottles, diapers, snacks, toys, books, pj’s, bi…”
“Yes Hermione I got everything in it. Don’t worry about it.”
She put on a long dark blue maxi dress and added some strappy Grecian sandals to go with it, grabbing a light cardigan sweater to bring along, she exited the closet.
“Okay I’m ready let’s get this over with.”
“Well try not to sound too excited about it.” Draco teased her as he got off the bed and grabbed Crissy.
She followed them out the door and into the kitchen. Crissy’s diaper bag sat on the counter, she walked over to it and peeked inside.
“I told you I already packed everything.” He told her.
“I’m just checking to make sure.”
“So you don’t trust me, is that it?”
She raised an eyebrow and stared at him.
He shook his head and let her look through the bag.
“In Crissy’s crib, why?”
“Because we need to bring her or it? Crissy can’t sleep without it.”
Draco ran his hand through his hair. “Okay Ms. Know it All, I’ll got get it.”
So what if she was a know it all. When it comes to babies, you have to be prepared for anything and everything.
“Okay got it, so can we go now, we’re going to be late if we don’t leave now.”
“Yeah I guess. Um how are we going to get there?” she asked him slinging the bag over her shoulder.
“Well I wanted to fly, but we don’t have time, so I guess were going to have to apparate there.”
“We’ll have to go side along, because I don’t know exactly where I’m going.” Because the last time she went there she had been blindfolded.
“Okay ready?” Draco shifted Crissy to his other side and reached out his hand towards her.
As soon as she grabbed a hold of it, they popped out of sight, to a place Hermione only visited in her nightmares. A place she never wanted to go again.
AN: I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry. There are no words to describe how sorry I am that it took me so long to update. But I'll mention it again, because a lot of people are unsure if I'm abandoning this story...and the answer is no. I truly intend to finish it, when it's going to be finished is to be determined. But despite the long updates I promise I will finish this story. I tried to make this chapter long to make up for the long wait, I hope you liked it. I've already started writing the next chapter, no promises, but hopefully I'll get it out sooner than this last time, but I can't promise anything. And if you haven't already figured it out, I guess it's safe to say that long updates are probably going to be expected for the next few chapters...I'll try to get them out as soon as possible, but I can't promise anything. I know I've lost a lot of readers during this waiting process, but I just want to say thank you everyone who has stuck this out with me, I really appreciate it. And as always please, please keep reading and reviewing.