Chapter 33 : A Letter from Ron
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Hermione stepped out of the car, inhaling the harsh air of winter as frost settled on the grass and hedges of the manor. She sighed in disappointment and shut the car door behind her. Draco shuffled to her side, with a grin that soon enough faltered when he looked at her face.
“What’s wrong?” he asked uneasily.
“I don’t want to be back…” She looked up at him and smiled slightly. “It was nice just us two.”
He halfheartedly smile and wrapped his arm around her, resting on her shoulders. He brought her in close, kissing her on her cheek hard. “Don’t worry, baby. I have been doing some thinking. And I have a surprise or I will have a surprise for you.”
She cocked an eyebrow questioningly with a grin. “And what that might be, Mr. Malfoy?”
“You’ll have to wait and see, Mrs. Malfoy,” he grinned slickly. “Come on.”
They walked in the field, away from the car to the small path of hedges as his hand rested on her waist to lead her through. They were talking quietly with smiles about the vacation.
“I think you got a tan,” giggled Hermione.
He scowled, “Did I?”
“Just kidding, you’re still as pale as ever.”
“Damn, I wanted to sun-kissed tan like those models…”
As they rounded the corner to the main pathway of the mansion, chatter was buzzing loudly. Draco’s face fell and Hermione looked uneasy as she began fidgeting. A mob of men and women were in black cloaks, crowding the pathway. Some glanced behind them and showed the skull mask that leaked the eerie feeling of death. Others were on their tippy toes, attempting to look beyond the sea of the others in front of them. Draco immediately laced his fingers with Hermione’s, pushing his way through the crowd, growling. Many shot out of the way once they recognize it was the prince of Death Eaters. At the front, Hermione felt sick, her knees were weak as she gasped in shock.
The dark brown eyes met hers and looked at her disapprovingly.
It was Kingsley Shacklebolt. Standing right next to the ex-Minister was Dean. Both were tied with wrist behind their backs. Kingsley held his broad shoulder back and wide, showing he was not broken down by the chaos. His once bald held was filled with hair, like a buzz cut. His ear was ripped, probably the gold hoop earring tore from it by one of the Death Eaters. Dean was scrawny on the other hand, but almost as tall as Kingsley. He looked extremely unkempt.
“HERMIONE!” Dean roared. “HOW COULD YOU?” He was roughly pulled back. “WITH THE ENEMY?”
Hermione‘s bottom lip began trembling and Draco stood in right of her, shielding her with his jaw tense. Lucius appeared behind the two, glaring at Draco. He nodded for him to come as Kingsley and Dean were being dragged inside. Draco turned to Hermione with stormy eyes.
“Go to the room. Lock it. I have the key. And listen,” he whispered, “Don’t think too much about this.” He caressed her cheek then followed his father.
It was easier said than done. Draco began to work early morning until late nights. He was barely ever around. He explained to her that he was going between the Ministry, working with his father about the situations arising and once in a while guarding Kinsley and Dean in the dungeons down in the Manor. So, with Draco gone, Hermione was left to her guilty thoughts. She had done nothing for the resistance. She became so caught up with her own little world. She became selfish. She forgot about the people out there, laying their lives for a cause. What was she doing? Playing house-wife and being a slut. No, she scolded herself, you are not a slut. He was your fiancé and now your husband. It’s ok. But it still didn’t make it right. She was living a fairly comfortable life and being taken care of while everyone else was living in fear. She buried her face into her hands, breathing ragged. She was really starting to hate herself.
In the distance, she heard footsteps as she quickly looked up. Slowly, her fingers crawled to her wand, lying on the desk she was sitting at. Her face softened as she saw who it was.
“Hey,” he smiled.
“Hi,” she breathed.
Draco walked over, leaning down to give her a greeting on the lips. His were lips soft and sweet. She craved and understood why she became so selfish. She always became lost in the craving for him; she strayed away from reality when he was around.
“What are you doing here so early?” she asked.
“Went in really quick to sort something out and took the rest of the day off for you and me,” he grinned. “So, I thought we can head into Muggle London… What do you say?”
She furrowed her eyebrows and cocked her head to the side. “Why?”
“Remember those tickets I got you for Christmas?”
“Oh! That’s right, but Draco why wouldn’t you save something like that for Valentine’s Day? It is only about two weeks away.”
“Maybe because I have something else plan?” he smirked smugly. “Plus, today is the day I show you the surprise. So, come on.”
“Er—which one do you want to watch?” she asked, tilting her head as she gazed at the poster for a movie.
“I don’t know anything about movinglys.”
“Movie,” giggled Hermione. “Okay, you like to watch a horror one, action or romance?”
He shrugged. “I don’t know. You chose. Although the romance would probably be fitting.”
“Romance?” scowled Hermione. “Alright, I’ll give it a go.”
Hermione approached the booth with Draco closely behind her with hands hitched in his pocket. His eyes were glanced everywhere not even slightly focused on Hermione. She exchanged the tickets for movies stubs and soon enough found her way through into the theater with popcorn and a soda in her hands. The darkness of the theater enveloped them as it was almost empty with three other couples cuddling.
“Why is it so dark?” Draco hissed, following Hermione in to an aisle.
“You’ll see. So impatient.”
She sat down and he besides her, leaning back into the chair. The sound began to echo in the theater, filling their senses and the theater darken with only the bright light of the screen shining on them. Draco was actually interested, seeing that he never saw a movie before. It was a typically cliché romantic movie, but it definitely made him more self-conscious about Hermione. It was a roller coaster with him. Other days he felt confident and other days he was a nervous wreck. His confidence and doubts went up and down and up and down. Unfortunately, right now, he was nervous. His arm twitched and he slowly slithered his arm around Hermione. She felt his fingers brushed against her neck and she still at his touch, but soon relax. She looked up at Draco and leaned up to give him a small peck on the cheek. Draco’s eyes widened and he looked down at her, his face close. His lips touched her, pushing himself on her. Hermione lifted the theater’s resting arms back until she was half-laying down on the seats with Draco on top of her, his lips fervently on hers. Their fingers entangled in each other hair, their breaths low.
I’m sorry everyone, Hermione thought. I enjoy this. I want it to be like this forever. I want to be in this man’s arms forever.
Draco pulled away from Hermione, squinting at a flashlight.
“Movie is over,” the pimply teenager growled. “Get a room, will you?”
Hermione bit down on her bottom lips, suppressing a laugh, but she couldn’t help herself. She laughed loudly, shaking her head in disbelief. Merlin, she was really out of touch with reality. Draco grinned, his eyes twinkling a bright light gray.
“Sorry,” he mumbled with a grin, grabbing Hermione’s hand and pulling her up. “We’ll get going.” He almost dragged her out of the movie as she continued to laugh freely with her head thrown back. After a little bit of time of following Draco, Hermione’s laughter fully died down.
“That was embarrassing,” she smiled.
He shrugged, “Probably the most action he’ll ever see.”
“That’s not nice!”
Draco shrugged yet again.
“Now, I feel bad. Maybe we should set him up.”
“Noble as ever, huh?” smirked Draco.
“Well, I just think no one should be lonely. By the way, where are we going?”
Hermione actually took a look around; the streets were becoming busier with people bustling about with large winter coats. She glanced behind her to find someone she thought was staring at her, but when she did a double take, no one was there. She shrugged it off. Shops became more and more in numbers and Draco made a sharp turn into a concrete court with few trees. In the middle of the court was a glassy high-rise building, towering over the surroundings. Draco didn’t even explain when he pulled Hermione forward. She was utterly confused, furrowing her eyebrows. They entered and the man seemed to recognize Draco and nodded. The lobby was marble floor and a gold chandelier hanging in the middle with diamond like gems hanging from it. Couches of brown leather poised slightly off to the side a good distance away from a small elegant coffee shop, but Hermione didn’t have time to examine it as she was pulled into a golden elevator. The doors shut close as Draco inserted a card then pressed a button, “Penthouse.” Not even with a rumble, the elevator made its way up as silence filled it.
Romantic dinner? thought Hermione. Or…no.
It rang lowly as they both stepped out into a foyer then entered through a door to an almost circular living room. It was empty. Around the corner, she noticed a breakfast bar, but couldn’t see further than that. On the left was a small hallway leading to two doors.
“This will be ours… In about a month. I’m having some things done. That’s a surprise too… And it needs to be furnished. What do you think?...”
Hermione walked past Draco to the window, gazing out as she pressed her palm against the pane. She sighed against the pane. “Ours? How?”
“I know it’s a muggle place. Mostly. There are a couple of wizards living here. Some bloke in Ravenclaw that makes broom models for top companies that bid for the models. He was at one of the parties. The guy that owns Wizard Gear Inc… They both suggested this. Well, what do you think?”
“How much did it cost?” she asked meekly.
“A lot to be honest. Don’t worry about it though.”
“You must have gone through loads of trouble converting money.”
“What do you think?” he asked through gritted teeth, her lack of answer nerving him.
She turned from the window pane with a small smile. “Is it just us two?”
“I love it,” she grinned, her brown eyes sparkling. “No more Manor?”
He shook his head with his lips curling upward. “No more. Better for us. I know you’ll feel safer. Privacy. Close to my job. We can really start our lives…”
“It’s perfect, Draco!”
She threw her arms over him, holding him tight as he embraced her, burying his face in her hair to gratefully smell her scent. She pulled back as they gazed into each other’s eyes. As Hermione was hoping to be feel those lips’ love, her stomach grumbled in protest. Draco lopsidedly smile.
“Hungry?” he asked.
She nodded. “How about Chinese takeout? I saw a place.”
“Chinese takeout? Another Muggle thing, I’m guessing?”
Hermione giggled, “Yes. I’ll go.”
“No,” he replied firmly.
“You don’t want it…?”
“It’s not that I don’t want it. It’s that you’re not walking by yourself. I told you never again. I can’t stand the thought of losing you. I was a mess…”
“Draco,” she smiled, reaching up to cup his face, “I’ll be fine. You can watch me from the window.”
“You’ll look like an ant from up here.”
“I’ll be fine. This area is populated with Muggles. They wouldn’t dare.”
“I wouldn’t put it pass anyone,” he said sadly. “But go. Be back as soon as possible, please.”
She nodded and left. Draco moved to the window, hoping if he could somehow see her from this height. But in reality, he couldn’t. He sighed. Why did everything felt surreal? They confessed their love and the marriage was no longer thought of something of an arrangement. They were going to have their own apartment. Eventually, kids down the road. Of course, not now. He wanted Hermione all to himself. Selfish! Yeah, he was selfish and always has been so it’s okay. The surreal feeling didn’t leave him though. Perhaps because deep in his gut, he knew something was going to happen. He didn’t know what. All he knew he had to preserve what he had at any cost. In thought, he was twisting his wedding band on his finger, scowling slightly. The time passed by and the anxiety hit him hard. From window to the door, he endlessly glanced. It’s been too long. FUCK! His heart was storming in his chest, thundering with the cries of fright. It turned his insides icy cold. He started toward the door and slammed it open to enter the foyer. As he went to touch the elevator button, it rang. The doors slid open to find a shock Hermione. Once she saw his face, she grinned and lifted her hand, holding a bottle of wine. Draco covered his mouth and sighed into it.
“What took you so long?” he croaked.
“I decided to get wine and I needed glasses,” she replied, puzzled and stepped out of the elevator. “What’s wrong?”
“What’s wrong? I was fucking worried about you. You took too long! Next time—”
She leaned forward and up, softly planting her lips on his. She whispered, “I’m fine, darling.”
She moved past Draco as he stood shock to the spot. She refused to tell him the eeriness of someone was staring at her, but it had to be a hallucination. No way in Muggle London was there a Death Eater creeping around and there was no way she would worry Draco more. He already looked strained with concern and he really was. Draco felt like he must preserve what he has at any cost. The Slytherin determination hissed in him, ready to bite at any threat. Before following her inside, he glanced at the elevator. He shut the door behind him, locking it with his wand. Hermione was pulling out cartons from the bag and then poured the wand-opened wine into the glasses as Draco was whispering protective charms. He turned and saw her eating out of a carton with sticks as his lips twitched into a smirk, ready to make a comment. Her eyes averted to his and at the same moment, they thought the same thing:
I want it to be like this forever.
Hermione was back at the Manor, plummeted into her thoughts about the apartment she was in a few days ago. She couldn’t wait. Sometimes she would tell Draco this and he would chuckle at her enthusiasm. She almost completely forget about Dean and Kinsley being held prisoner floors below her. She was on cloud nine, a complete bliss until…
Something behind her squawked and she jerked from her chair. Her eyes darted madly then a squawk filled the room again. A diricawl was pacing on the floor, bobbing its heading with a letter on its foot. Hermione immediately reached for it. She was so thankful to hear from Ginny. Expect it wasn’t from Ginny…
It was from Ron.
A/N: Funny thing, when I was reading this before posting this up I read “From window to the door” and in my mind, I read from the window to the wall -___- THAT SONG! Lol
Anyway, please review ;)
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