This chapter is not too long but it's very eventful, especially the ending so don't be mad at me for the shortness of the chapter, the next one will be longer (: Welcome back to TOR and enjoy this one xx
To say that Draco was surprised was an understatement. He stared at the note in front of him with wide eyes.
"What's that?" Hermione asked, stepping into the kitchen and sitting opposite him. He silently handed her the note and she read it quickly, her eyebrows shooting up.
"Ritch wants to meet you?" She asked.
"I dont understand why she'd possibly want to do that considering I just broke up with her barely a few days ago!" Draco exclaimed.
"It just asks you to meet her in Rogerson's bar at 6", Hermione said, turning over the note to see if there was anything written on the other side, "Are you going to go?" She looked up and her eyes met his.
"Do you think I should go?" He asked. She smiled and shrugged, "You're asking me for my opinion?"
"You are my wife", He said, smirking.
She placed her folded arms against the table, "You can go if you want. Maybe it's urgent."
"Maybe she just can't stay away from my dashing, charming self. I am irresistible", He said, leaning back in his chair and intertwining his fingers behind his head.
"Okay, Malfoy", She shook her head, a smile still on her face, "If you say so." He looked at her, unlaced his fingers and leaned forward till his face was inches away from her's.
"You know it's true", He said. She just raised her eyebrows with an expression that read "Really, Malfoy?"
"You are not the average woman, you know that?" He asked, sitting normally again, "A normal woman would have been complete frazzled by my close proximity to her."
"The day Im frazzled by your close proximity is the day I will-"
"Allow me to kiss you?" He asked, waggling his eyebrows suggestively.
She rolled her eyes, "If you want to kiss me so bad, you can just ask."
"Would you allow me to?" He asked, smirking.
"Only in your dreams", She laughed, standing up, "Actually, not even in your dreams. Not even in my worst nightmare." He chuckled as she left the kitchen.
"Granger?" He called just before she disappeared out of sight. She turned back. "I think I'll go see what Ritch wants." Hermione looked away for a second with an indecipherable expression before looking at him again and nodding.
What was going to between them? Were they friends now then? Were they more than just acquaintances? Where was their relationship heading? Wait, relationship? They didn't have a "relationship" per se. It was more of a... What was it?
He shook his head. He didn't want to think about this now. He stood up and looked at his watch- 5:30. He might as well start getting ready for his meet with Ritch. He headed upstairs and into his room where he saw Hermione sitting on the bed with a book in her hands, but she was staring off into space, a lost expression on her face.
"You okay?" He asked, his voice startling her and making her jump.
"Uh- yeah", She forced a smile. No, she wasn't okay. What if he met Ritch and realized how much more perfect she was and chose to stay with her again? Then what? Wait, why was it bothering her so much? She had Ginny now! She didn't need him... And she was much better than Ritch... right? Sure, she wasn't as pretty or have a figure as perfect, but she was smart and had a sweeter personality than Ritch...
Draco saw her internal battle from her furrowing and unfurrowing of her eyebrows. "Listen, when I get back- Im taking you out for dinner, okay? It's great the Ginny's keeping Aaron at her house for today so let's take advantage of that. Illl take you out."
"Are you asking me on a date?" She smirked, feeling slightly better.
"Do you want me to ask you on a date?" He asked, returning his trademark smirk.
"Do you want me to ask you to ask me on a date?" She asked, her smirk turning into a grin.
"Im too damn lazy to figure out the continuation, but if it makes you feel better- yes, Im asking you out on a friendly date. As your husband of course. For appearance's sake."
"Of course", She nodded. Was it really for appearances? "Ill be ready at 7:30."
"Sounds good", He said, heading to the wardrobe. He pulled on a white polo t-shirt and faded jeans, both branded of course and apparated out.
He scanned the area for Ritch and spotted her at the bar table. He headed that way and took a seat beside her.
"Hey", She smiled at him.
"Uh- hi", He responded, "How come you called me all of a sudden?"
"Just generally", Ritch said, "How are you? How is Hermione doing?"
"Im good, so is she", Draco said, a little nervously. What was she doing?
"What was the real reason for our break-up, Draco?" She asked, handing him a drink.
Oh shit. Draco thought. He held the glass in his hand and took a sip, "Hermione's pregnant."
Perfect, Ritch thought to herself. She smiled, "That's great. Congratulations."
Draco's eyebrows knitted together. That's great? What was she playing at? No punches? No violence at all? Not even a few insults thrown his way?
"Um... Thanks", Draco said, still thoroughly confused.
Ritch smiled and held up her glass, "To your and Hermione's good health and long life", She said. He clinked his glass with her's and both downed their drinks. Draco felt a warm, tingling feeling run down his throat and settle in his stomach as he emptied the glass.
"It's not strong stuff right?" He asked, looking at the glass and finding the taste a bit odd.
"Nope, it's not strong at all- it's the restaurant's new special." Ritch said.
"Thank you for having me here and for understand the reason for our break-up", Draco said, standing up. He couldn't take this any more... her calm demeanor was really beginning to unnerve him.
"Thank you for coming", She smiled.
"Uh... see you at the office then", He said, taking a few steps backwards.
"Bye, Draco", She turned back to ask for another drink and Draco apparated out of the bar.
When he arrived home, Hermione was sitting on the sofa in their living room, completely lost in her book.
"She wanted to congratulate us and toast to our good health and long life", He said, startling her again.
"Can you not startle me like that?" She asked, putting her book aside.
"Apologies, m'lady", He grinned.
"Anyway, she did what? Why would she be so nice? I thought you'd come back with a black eye or something", Hermione said.
"So did I", Draco shrugged, "It was slightly unnerving."
"Is that why you came home early?"
"Yep. In which case, let's leave early too. It won't hurt to spend more time at the restaurant or we could just drive around a bit."
Hermione stood up to go and change, as did he. The day before, after returning from the Weasleys', she had spent the evening teaching him how to drive. He was a quick learner and pretty much got the hang of it though he preferred driving at a slow pace as he was afraid he wouldn't be able to break in time.
She slipped into a ocean blue knee-length dress and flats while he wore a black shirt and jeans. They went to the car and he insisted on driving. After searching around a bit, he stopped outside a familiar high-class wizarding restaurant and led her inside. The waiters seemed to know him as they nodded in greeting to both the Malfoys.
Dinner went smoothly, they chatted about things like their Hogwarts' years, the war, Pansy and Blaise, the Slytherins. Hermione told Draco about how they ended up together and everything else Ginny had told her. Things were going smoothly when Draco said something that made her freeze.
"I never thought Id end up with a mudblood."
Her head snapped up and he was sitting there, leaning back in his chair casually.
"Excuse me?" She spluttered, anger evident in her voice.
"You heard me- I never thought Id end up with you, a filthy mudblood." Anger and a weird kind of pain coursed through Hermione's blood. How dare he?! After everything they went through...
"I mean, what did I see in you?" He asked lazily, "You're not pretty, you don't have a great figure, you're... boring."
Her mouth fell open and she was ready to burst.
"Are you drunk?!" She exclaimed.
"No, and even if I was- a drunk man's words are a sober man's thoughts, eh?" He smirked at her. She grit her teeth together and pushed her chair behind and stood up.
"I thought you had changed. You're nothing but a stupid death-eater", She hissed, grabbing her purse and storming towards the exit.
Draco rolled his eyes and stood up, following her quickly after dropping a bag of galleons on the table.
"Granger, wait up", He said, grabbing her arm. They were outside in the parking lot where not many people were present. She spun around and snatched her hand back towards her.
"Don't touch me, you bastard!" She cried, feeling tears well up in her eyes.
"Of course she starts crying!" He exclaimed dramatically, "When all else fails, cry like there's no tomorrow. You seem to be an expert in it."
"What's wrong with you?" She whispered, wiping away her tears angrily, "Why are you being like this?!"
"I was always like this, Granger", He said, "What? You thought I actually liked you? That we could be... Friends?" He laughed at her expression, "Of course you did! Stupid mudblood bitch." She raised her hand to slap him but he caught her wrist.
"Don't touch me with your germs."
"If it hasn't occurred to you, you're touching me", She spat through gritted teeth, "And you're hurting me." His grip tightened a bit before he threw her arm back to her side in disgust.
"To make matters worse, there's a stupid baby coming our way", He muttered.
"What?" She said, disbelievingly, "Malfoy, you said you wanted to help me! You said you'd be there for me!"
"You're delusional". He stated simply, heading for the car.
"You- you- you death-eater! You're just like your father! You're a liar and you're a cheater and you care about nobody but yourself!"
"How dare you!" He growled, slamming his palms against the car side, "Don't say a word about my father! And don't say a word about me! You have no right! You're nothing but the dirt under my shoe!"
"You're nothing but a bastard", She said quietly, her entire body shaking and tears in her eyes. What was going on... Had she imagined the nice Malfoy?
"Get in the car", He snarled, holding the driver's side door open.
"Don't tell me what to do!" She cried.
"Fine then, stay here. And walk home. You won't get a ride home anywhere close by and apparation isn't allowed", He said, sitting inside. She grit her teeth together and got inside the passenger's seat.
He started the car and drove away from the place, faster than he could manage.
"Malfoy, slow down", She said, pulling her seatbelt on.
"Shut up", He spat, moving faster through the streets.
"Malfoy, you're driving too fast!" She said, gripping the edge of the seat with one hand and putting her other hand on her stomach.
"Im driving fine!"
"No you're not! You'll get us killed, whats wrong with you?!" She cried, scared out of her wits. Why did she not bring her wand with her?
"Ill be glad to get rid of you. One less mudblood in the world", He said, speeding up further.
"MALFOY, STOP THE CAR!" She screamed. When he didn't listen, she shuffled through her purse and brought out her phone. With shaking fingers she dialed Ginny's number.
"Ginny! I need help! Malfoy won't stop the car and he's going too fast", Her words tumbled out as she began panicking. If he crashed, the baby...
"Malfoy please slow down!" Hermione cried, looking at him.
"Why won't he slow down?" Ginny asked, sounding panicked. She heard Harry close by asking her what was going on.
"I don't know, Gods Ginny! What do I do?!" Hermione said, her hands shaking more than before.
"Where are you guys?!" Ginny asked.
"I don't know!" Hermione said, tears clouding her vision. "We're going too fast! MALFOY, YOU'LL GET US KILLED!" She screamed.
"Hermione, try and look around- where are you? We're driving too so-" Before Ginny could finish her sentence, Hermione felt the car change it's angle, the tyres screeching against the road as it fought to regain proper grip.
"DRACO, WATCH OUT!" Hermione screamed, moving her arms in front of her face, knowing it would be futile and that it was too late to do anything...
* * * *
"Ginny, what's going on?!" Harry asked as his wife asked someone that sounded like Hermione about slowing down. He heard Hermione panicking across the line and Ginny asked her where they were.
"Gin, what's happening?" He asked, worried. He stopped the car at the side of the street and looked to his wife. He heard Hermione scream "MALFOY, YOU'LL GET US KILLED!" And his eyes widened. What the hell?! What was going on?!
"Hermione, try and look around- where are you? We're driving too so-" Ginny was saying when suddenly she stopped and her head snapped to the right, as did Harry's. They watched as an extremely familiar car passed them on the road, it's angle odd and it's speed much too fast.
"Harry..." She gasped. The two watched as the car changed angle suddenly, it's tyres continuously screeching. The side of the road was fenced with a high metal solid wall that had construction in process on the other side.
They watched as the car went crashing straight into the wall, it's windows shattering and the front side folding into the metal. If the had been lucky enough to survive the folding of the car, the impact of the crash would have surely taken their lives...
CLIFFHANGERRRR. So TOR has returned after a long long time and as I said, this chapter would be BIG. Is it? I mean, come on, they got into a car crash. And what in the name of Merlin is WRONG with draco? Why would he say all that to Hermione all of a sudden? :O Has he really not changed? And what was UP with Ritch's creepy behavior? D: It was rather unnerving, wasn't it? So all your questions will be answered in the next chapter. Sorry for leaving you hanging here ;) Im happy to announce, well not really happy, that I have completed writing EHFAR'S last chapter and it will be posted as soon as possible (: It's very touching, mind you so sit with a box of tissues ;)
PLEASE PLEASE REVIEW. That box down there is calling out to you- it's hungry for your reviews! It only takes a second to feed the poor thing so please do so and make my day (: Im hoping to reach a high number this time!
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