Chapter 41 : Finding You
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Draco slid onto the bar stool, grumbling to himself. He stroked his chin, the whiskers scratching him. It wasn’t a pleasant feeling. He sighed, rubbing his entire face when someone asked, “Need anything, love?”
He peeked from his hands, sighing. “Hm…” He paused, his eyes widening. “You,” he hissed.
Evelyn’s jaw hung with shock and face was as pale as the Bloody Baron. She was croaking with words stuck in her throat. She swallowed with a shaky breath. “Draco,” she gasped. “Listen, I want to explain,” she said quickly, backing away from him as he stood on his feet with a deadly glint in his eyes. “I know you told me to leave the country—”
“Where is she?” he asked accusingly.
“Where—Draco, I swear I don’t know who you’re talking about…”
“MY WIFE!” he roared. Everyone at the little restaurant and bar turned to watch Draco screaming and slamming his fists on the bar counter.
“You mean—you mean the Granger girl? I mean Malfoy… Malfoy. She’s your wife…so she’s a Malfoy…” Evelyn rambled. Again he slammed his fists on the counter and she winced. “Draco—I don’t know. I haven’t seen her in weeks!”
“We—weeks?” he stuttered. “So, you saw her?”
“Yes, I saw her with Rabastan!” she whimpered an explanation. “She just came in here and he was with her. I promise you I didn’t touch a hair on that little pretty head of hers! I promise, Draco!”
“When did you see her? How long ago?”
“I don’t know…”
“HOW LONG AGO?”
“It was a few days after Valentine’s! A couple of days after that…after Valentine’s that is… I can’t remember the exact date!”
Draco stared at his clenched fists, his teeth grinding. He looked up from his fist to Evelyn. “She was with Rabastan?”
“Yes—yes!” stammered Evelyn. “He left with her.”
Draco nodded thoughtfully at his fists again. “Thank you,” he whispered calmly yet so deadly. He swept out of the little restaurant as people jumped out of his way. They feared his eyes. His eyes were deadly as if his cold stare could kill. And he had intentions to. He wanted nothing more, but to wrap his fingers around Rabastan’s throat and choke him until Draco could witness Rabastan’s last breath. He sharply turned the corner into a secluded alley. He apparated himself right into his apartment. An alarm went off, blowing loudly, screaming its warning. Draco did nothing, but calmly stared at the wooden door in front of him. The door swung open and he was met with a wand.
“Dra—Draco?” asked Rabastan. Sighing, he waved his wand in the air and the alarm was cut off by a deafeningly, maddening silence.
Draco cocked his eyebrow with an evil smirk. He was going mad to smirk at a time like this.
“What—what are you doing here?” Rabastan asked, confusedly.
“Where is she?”
“Where is… Draco, listen to what I’m about to tell you—” He stepped back with his one hand up in surrender and the other tightening around his wand. “Hermione. I saw her leaving the Manor. She looked distraught. I brought her somewhere safe. STOP LOOKING AT ME LIKE THAT!” barked Rabastan. “I didn’t fucking do anything to her. I fucking didn’t. I brought her to a flat for a couple of fucking days. That’s all. She was depressed, Draco. I asked her. I asked her a billon times why she was running away from you. All she told me was not to tell you…”
“Where is she?” whispered Draco in a deadly voice.
“I went back to the apartment a couple of days ago. She was gone Draco. Give me Veritaserum if you don’t believe me. I’ll take it willingly.”
Draco noticed the tired look in Rabastan’s eyes. They were tired, tired about the weight he was holding in his heart. He was tired from holding in the truth.
“Where did she go?”
“I—I don’t know. I been searching for her.”
“Why did you leave? Did you hurt her? Did you assault her? I hope you didn’t lay a fucking finger on her.”
He shook his head. “She was severely depressed, Draco, and every night she was calling for you, screaming your name in such a despair. I saw you walking around town … I told her we should talk to you. She refused. She didn’t want you to see me…to see her. I think after that she lost trust in me. She was afraid I was going to tell you… And the next day, I came back to the flat…she wasn’t there.” He sighed.
“I’ll ask around town,” Draco said, turning to leave.
“I already did… She isn’t there anymore… I don’t know where she is…”
Draco stared at his boots as his shoulders shook. He was trying to suppress a sob. He couldn’t cry, not in front of Rabastan. He couldn’t allow him to see weakness… But it was so long ago that everyone must have realized that she was his weakness. And now she was out there, exposed to the world where anyone could take her and he would fall weak to the kidnapper. He couldn’t have that. It wasn’t because of selfish pride. It was because he needed to be ensure not only that she was safe, but he as well. He was to become a father and he would never dare to allow his baby boy to be without a father.
Draco glared at the wand in his hand and he had it laid in his palms. “Repiro Hermione…” he whispered sadly. The wand began spinning like a broken compass then with a jerk it pointed out the window.
“What is—? Draco!”
Draco snatched a broom from a corner and unbolted the window. He jumped out of it and tucked the broom between his legs as he was falling. The broom zapped into the air and he was soaring in a race to find the one he loves.
Hermione slowly slid into a beautiful wooden chair tucked by the bay window with curtains of gold with red polka dots that fell to the floor. The curtains were opened as the light from the dying sun dipped to give its last touch for the day. She set the mug on the wooden round table, staring out absent-mindedly into the field. The blades of long grass swayed in the light breeze, almost waving to her. With both hands on the mug, she took a small sip, feeling the heat of the tea tingle her body with warmth. She sighed after the sip and took a glance around the small cottage. A kitchen was on the other end of the small room, its wood rich and dark with windowed cabinets and cupboards and its wall red with bricks. Near the entrance of the cottage was a red brick fireplace crackling with a playful fire and a couch in front of it with a beautiful violet-red color in velvet. Tucked in a corner was stairs leading to an open balcony on the inside. All the walls were lined with wood of a rich and comforting color. It felt like home. This will be her home.
Draco flew over the old town Hermione was hiding in and landed in a village nearby. It was obviously an old village and quite small. At landing in a small, dingy alleyway, his wand once again went berserk. It was spinning madly in place, wheezing. Although it did not point to her direction, he knew she was nearby. She had obviously placed protective charms and spells. He stepped out of the alleyway. He took in his surroundings. The Middle Earth-like village had rooftops of triangles in beautiful brown and stones of fading gray. Vines hugged some homes on the sides, its viney fingers embracing the corners. A gray cobble stone street was uneven, certain stones pushing off against the ground. The sunset touched the sky as the last of daybreak was slipping away humbly in blue on the horizon. The streets were lifeless. Draco sighed and looked off to his left distractedly at a swinging sign that squeaked in the breeze. He shrugged, heading straight towards the bar. The bar was not like the streets. It was loud and buzzing with chatter and he took the opportunity to shove Hermione’s still picture in people’s faces. With every shake of the head and every “no,” he became disappointed. The disappointment drowned his heart to hopelessness, to despair. His thoughts were becoming depressing. His thoughts were of the fear of never finding her. Eventually, when he asked every single last person in the bar, he slid into a barstool.
“I need the hardest stuff you got,” he said somberly to the bar lady.
She wiping a cup with a towel when she cocked her head to the side, grinning. Her grin flashed her teeth and dark holes of missing teeth. He tried hard not to grimace with disgust. She was fairly young and blonde frizzy curls around her face. He only hoped this woman would not hit on him because he was certainly not in the mood.
“You’ve been the one who been harassin’ the customers? Lookin’ for a girl they say…” She nodded at him
“So, I am. Hardest stuff you got.”
“What she look like?”
Draco sighed with frustration and exhaustion, pulling Hermione picture out of his pocket. He stared down at it for a few moments. He enchanted the moving picture to be stilled for Muggles to see and it stilled at a perfect moment. Loose curls from Hermione's updo fell into her shining face and the veil flowed behind her. She was laughing, flashing her beautiful smile and her delicate hands holding up the wedding dress so she wouldn’t trip. He slid the picture to the bar lady, avoiding to look at the picture again.
“She sure is beautiful!”
“Thanks,” mumbled Draco.
“She’s your wife?”
“She ran away from you or sumthing?”
Draco didn’t answer. He simply looked away.
“Maybe she doesn’t want to be found.”
He sighed angrily. “Well, I need to find her.”
“What she ran away for? You abuse her?”
“No,” sighed Draco. “I don’t. I would never ever lay a finger on her like that. I love her with all my heart.”
“You sure? Maybe she ran off with another man.”
“She loves me,” he whispered to his clenched fist.
The bar door with a little porthole swung open and out came a slow-paced, hunched over elderly woman. Her white hair was in a crown braid and her cheeks literally sagged. Her eyes were slits from the excessive wrinkles around her face.
“Yes, dearie,” she smiled.
“Have you seen her?” The bar lady leaned in toward her grandmother to show her the picture.
“How can I forget a beautiful face like that?” giggled the grandmother as Draco perked up with eyes widened.
“She was distressed. Who’s looking for her?” the grandmother asked.
“Him.” The bar lady nodded at Draco as he was left speechless.
“She doesn’t want anyone to find her. She made that clear to me.”
“Please,” breathed Draco, feeling a lump in his throat. “I’m her husband. I’m worried for her. Please, I beg of you…” He choked back a sob.
“I rented her a cottage. It’s out of the village, a few miles up the hill,” she replied somberly, her eyes suspiously eyeing Draco.
His bottom lip trembled and breathed, “Thank you.”
He jumped off the bar stool and sprinted out of the bar. He never knew he could run so fast. His legs carried him like the wind. Up the hill he went, almost loosing balance because of the unevenness of the cobble street, but his legs moved with more determination and energy than his body could supplied. Hope pumped through him like adrenaline. His body was working on the pure hope, pulsing through his vein. The stone slowly started to disappear to dirt. His boots melted into the sinking dirt, but he kept moving. Eventually, blades of yellow grass sprouted from the dirt, becoming higher and higher until it reach his waist. A cottage that looked like a house from the village with a pretty brown rooftop and gray stones was per. At the doorstep was a woman with light golden brown hair flowing in waves down to the middle of her back. He could see her holding onto the doorknob, looking absently in the distance. She was looking at dusk pushing away the sunset colors down to the horizon. His speed increased as his arms slapped away any blades of grass. She looked his way. For one second, he thought she was going to run and she did. She ran toward him, pushing the grass too through the meadow.
Hermione was gasping for air as tears rapidly ran down his face. “DRACO!” she cried. “Draco.”
She was right there. He opened his arms and she opened her. She threw himself into his as they wrapped around his neck and his arms around his waist. With week knees, they both fell onto the ground and Hermione sob echoed into the dusk.
A/N: Aw, they are reunited. =) Is this something to be happy about?
As always thank you for everyone for following this story and reviewing. I could never thank you enough so this won’t be the last time. XOXO
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