After Hermione left Draco standing in the sitting room alone, she let her feet lead her somewhere she could be alone also, she arrived at her room in hopes it would calm her down. At the moment though, all she wanted was to scream, throw things, smash vases, and cry, and that is what she did for the better part of an hour until she had destroyed the area. Finally, she was able to calm down enough to think about all that had happened that day.
Was she being a bit over emotional? Probably, but she had left behind a life of action and drama for a reason. She didn’t want action, she didn’t want mystery, and she didn’t want to be threatened again by some deranged relative of Draco’s. Hermione’s thoughts drifted to Draco, she was sure this wasn’t what he wanted either. He hadn’t been looking for trouble from Seth and she had left him high and dry so she could deal with her own thoughts and emotions. She sighed deeply after realizing she should probably find him so they could figure out their plan of action against Seth and the skeazy lawyer.
She snapped her fingers and Sprinkles appeared before her in her little blue dress. The house elf’s small mouth formed an “O” as she took in the condition of Hermione’s surrounding. Normally, Hermione would reassure Sprinkles that she would deal with the mess later, but she didn’t.
“May I help you, Miss Hermione?” She squeaked.
“Can you tell me where Draco is?” Hermione asked politely. Sprinkles could tell that her mistress was upset from the red rings around her eyes and her red nose.
“Master is in the Study.” She answered.
“But he requested not to be bothered.” Sprinkles informed her.
“Did he request not to be bothered by me in particular?” Hermione questioned, fearing the answer.
“No, not directly.” Sprinkles hesitated. She didn’t want to be torn between two of her masters.
“Good, Thank you Sprinkles.” Hermione patted the little elf on the head before heading towards the study. She knew he was going to be angry with her. Either he would get over it, or he wouldn’t and she was about to figure out which one it was. It didn’t take her long to get to the study; it was one of the few rooms she could actually find. She took a deep breath before pushing the doors open.
Hermione had expected to see him sitting behind the grand desk in front of the wall of windows, but he wasn’t sitting there. He was standing by the fireplace, one hand on the mantle as he stared into the warm flames, she could almost see the thoughts going through his brain. Were they not in the situation they were in, she might have taken the time to admire him. She could never truly say he wasn’t good looking, even in school he had been nice to look at, just ugly on the inside. Now it seemed as though his insides were growing to match the exterior. She stepped into the room and closed the door behind her.
“I asked to not be disturbed.” Draco sighed. She could see him tense up and the muscles in his jaw move and he ground his teeth.
“I thought we should talk about things.”She offered.
“Oh, so now is a good time?” His sarcasm was dripping from every word. Hermione winced.
“I deserve that.” She was defeated. She turned to leave, knowing that she could come see him again once he had calmed down.
“Is that it? Are you just going to run away again when things don’t go your way?” His anger permeated each note in his question. His question and accusation had fired up her anger once more. She whipped around with full force, prepared to take him on. He was only a few feet from her now, she hadn’t notice he moved before that moment.
“That is not fair and you know it.” She hissed.
“How is it not? What did I say that was incorrect?” He asked but she knew he was right, but this was her life and it didn’t bloody matter what he thought. She gaze matched his as he glowered at her with rage in his eyes.
“I have done my best to understand and be there for you Hermione. Losing the one you love is hard but tell me, what I have done wrong that makes you feel the need to run away from me.” Draco asked, letting the anger slip from his voice momentarily but it didn’t leave his eyes.
“This isn’t about you Draco!” She screamed as she took a step forward and poked his chest with her finger to make her point. “Why does it always have to be about you?” Hermione yelled. If anger had been in Draco’s eyes before now she wasn’t sure what to call this new emotion. It was searing in its intensity.
“Me?” He asked incredulously. “When has it ever been about me? It’s always about you. Besides getting married, I have done everything in my power to make you happy and comfortable here.” He was inches from her face, his face red from straining to withhold his anger at the woman in front of him.
“I thought you were happy enough for the past few months, then when you decide it’s over and you are done. What about me? When do I get a say in what happens.” He asked.
“Fine.” Hermione threw her hands in the air. “Have your say. Tell me what it is you want.” She said with a note of sarcasm on the “you”. He just stared at her.
“Damn it Hermione, why do you have to be so bloody stubborn?” He told her. “I want us to continue as this never happened and let me take care of Seth. He isn’t as smart as he thinks he is and now I’ve been warned of his plans. Plus, don’t you see. This is what he wants from us.” His anger diminished slightly, though his jaw was still set in annoyance. Hermione couldn’t help but his see reasoning. She wondered if she could trust to just let him take care of things. Draco could see the anger slowly melt from her and he took this opportunity reached out and grabbed her hand. He was half expecting for her to pull away once more but she didn’t and even though he hadn’t completely let go of his anger, he pulled Hermione into his embrace.
Hermione wanted to let him soothe her. She had forgotten what it was like to let someone else take the burden for a little while. She didn’t have to handle everything on her own. Hermione let him hold her close and he backed up to the couch and sat down. He pulled her into his lap and whispered that things would be okay. She was almost on autopilot as she sat there. She could hear Draco whispering to her but she wasn’t paying attention to the words. Her mind had drift to an old memory brought to the forefront of her mind by Draco’s actions.
“‘Mione, it will be okay love.” Whispered into her ear, she knew this would probably be the last time she would see him until the war was over. Bill and Fluer’s wedding was in the morning, she and Fred had managed to slip out into the backyard, hidden by a clump of trees.
“I know, but I’ll be gone for so long. Can’t we tell anyone before I leave?” Hermione’s whispered voice begged her boyfriend. “We have been in hiding for so long. Ron thinks there is something between him and I. I told him firmly that it will never happen, but you know your brother.” Hermione told him.
Fred stole a kiss from her with feather light lips.
“Love, I trust you. Ron won’t do anything if you say no.” Fred told her.
“Do you not want me anymore? Are you ashamed of me?” She couldn’t help but ask. She let her youthful insecurities get to her. Fred grabbed her close and held her tight to him, she could feel his love in such a simple gesture.
“I’m going to marry you Hermione Granger.” He told her, a smile played on her lips at his words. This time it was Hermione that stole a kiss.
“Then why can’t anyone know?” She asked.
“Because, everyone knows Harry needs you and Ron. What if this was the straw that broke the hippogriff’s back? We need you three to be together, you can’t just spring something like this on a temperamental bloke like my brother.” He tried to reason with her.
“I know you are right. I wish you weren’t. I want to yell it from the rooftops, Fred. I love you more than anything. I want everyone to know.” She leaned her head against his chest. He was so tall. He wrapped her up in his arms, backing up to a tree and sitting down. He held her close and she let him soothe her and take the burden of tomorrow for her and she relaxed into him completely.
“I will yell it from the astronomy tower once this is all over with. I have faith in you three.” He whispered in her ear. He kissed her again and she kissed him back with every fiber in her being. She tried to pour all the love in her heart for this man into that one kiss. She had felt Fred do the same. She let him hold her close and deepen the kiss.
Hermione thought of the last time she let a man soothe her, it had been the last time she had seen him alone. It had been the last time she had been with him physically too. As the tears slipped from her eyes, she knew Draco didn’t understand the reason for her tears. He held her closer and increased the soothing whispers. He kissed away her tears and she let him. She wanted to forget her memory, the moment Draco’s lips met her own she accepted them greedily. She knew she was using him for her own selfish reasons, but in that moment, this is exactly what she needed from him and she let him distract her from her thoughts.