Chapter 16 : Chapter 16
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When the exam was over everyone left as soon as they could in order to celebrate the completion of their final exam. Blaise had stayed with me for a while but became bored and wandered off to find something to do. By the time Draco came out of the hall I was sat on the floor, leaning against the wall and playing with the hem of my skirt. I looked up at Draco but his face was devoid of any emotion.
“What’s wrong? What happened? What did he say?” When Draco didn’t respond I stood up, took him by the shoulders and forced him to look in my eyes. “Draco? What happened?”
“Me... he asked me.”
“What did he ask you? You’re not making sense.”
“Hermione, he offered me a job as an auror.” I sighed in relief and smiled at the look of disbelief on Draco’s face.
“That’s great! Now we have another thing to celebrate! I told you that you could get the job if you tried.”
“I couldn’t have done it without you though. That’s why he wants to meet you too. He wants to meet us in McGonagall’s office now.”
“Why would he want to talk to me?”
“Why wouldn’t he? You’re one of the Golden Trio, you’re the smartest witch of your age and you have proven yourself to be an amazing dueller. He’d be crazy not to talk to you.” I smiled but didn’t say anything in reply to the flattery.
“Come on, let’s go to McGonagall’s office and find out what he wants.” Draco tucked my hand in the crook of his arm and we walked to McGonagall’s office.
“Any idea what the password is?”
“I didn’t think about that. Give me a minute...Dumbledore.” The staircase began to move and we quickly stepped on.
“How did you know the password?” I shrugged
“Dumbledore was her closest friend. It made sense” The staircase stopped moving and we stepped closer to the door. I knocked lightly on the door and waited for a reply.
“Come in... ah Miss Granger, Mr Malfoy, take a seat. I’ll leave you three to your business.” McGonagall stood up and left her office. We both turned back to face the man who had been our examiner.
“I’m delighted to say that you two have both achieved full marks. I have already offered Mr Malfoy, here, a job and I’d like to extend the offer to you.” Shocked, I looked at Draco who smiled at me in confirmation. “However,” I looked back at the auror. “I would also like to give you the opportunity to be involved in training other aurors as well. As I understand it you taught Mr Malfoy wandless magic. I will understand if you wish to pursue another career but I have already spoken with my superiors and we are in agreement that the Auror Department would greatly benefit if you joined us. You don’t have to decide now but you can start as soon as you want.”
I looked at Draco who stared back as if to say ‘it’s up to you’. This is an amazing offer but I don’t want to be on the frontline anymore. I need time to think this through; I’m not going to rush a decision as important as this.
“Could I have time to think about it?”
“Of course. Owl me when you have made up your mind. Now Mr Malfoy, I have a few bits of parchment to sign before you can start. Please sign here.” Draco signed the parchment and sat back as the auror continued to speak. “Ok, you start two weeks after you graduate. You will be expected at the Auror Department Head Quarters at precisely eight o’clock in the morning. Someone will meet you there. Until then, enjoy your graduation.” He stood up, nodded at the two of us then left.
“Hermione, I think it’s a great opportunity for you.”
“I know it’s a great opportunity but I already told you that I don’t want to be fighting dark wizards anymore; I spent too much of my life doing that already.”
“Well then don’t become an auror. That doesn’t stop you from training aurors though.”
“I hadn’t thought of it like that.”
“Well then I can guarantee that you hadn’t realised that you would be training me, Potter and Weasley. Who would miss an opportunity to boss Potter around?” I laughed and rolled my eyes.
“Of course you would see it like that. I’ll owl him in the morning but for now we have to go to dinner before Blaise starts annoying other people.”
We both stood up and Draco opened the door for me. We walked towards the great hall but as we drew closer we realised that it was a lot louder than normal and people sounded angry.
“I think we’re too late.”
We ran the rest of the short distance but stopped abruptly and observed the scene around us. The teachers were strangely absent but we were more concerned that the Gryffindors all had brightly coloured hair that ranged from bubble gum pink to sky blue and lime green; they were all yelling and hexing the Slytherins who were angrily hexing back. The Hufflepuffs were taking cover beneath the table whilst the Ravenclaws were trying to help those who had been hit but some of them had obviously been caught in the crossfire and were also hexing the Slytherins. We both spotted a figure unconscious on the floor on the Slytherin side of the hall.
We ran over to the unconscious person and pulled him out of harm’s way.
“What did you do?!”
“It’s obvious that you’re to blame for the chaos, Blaise, so what did you do?” Blaise looked around the hall and then back at us. He cowered under both of our glares and began to look a little guilty.
“I might’ve got a little bored and hexed a random Gryffindor who hexed me back. The rest of the Slytherins started hexing the Gryffindors for hexing me and then I got knocked unconscious so I don’t know what happened after that.”
“Really, Blaise, you must control yourself. Next time you could start a bloody war!” Blaise started to stutter an apology but Draco was beyond vexed. “Enough of this.” He climbed onto a table. “Sonorous! ENOUGH!” Every single pair of eyes was on Draco. “This is NOT how we should be behaving. I know that Blaise started it but it ends here. Blaise will be dealt with accordingly. Now, those of you who have been hexed make your way to the hospital wing and everyone else just sit down and eat like civilised people.” Nobody moved as they were still frozen in shock. “I SAID MOVE!” The students did what they were told and Draco removed the charm from his voice. He stepped off the table and dragged Blaise out of the hall by his collar. A little worried at what Draco might do to him, I followed.
“What the bloody hell were you thinking? Don’t answer that.” I raked my hands through my hair. “I’m going to have to take house points and put you in detention, you know that right?”
“But, mate, come on, surely there’s something you can do?”
“No, Blaise. You know that what you did was wrong and now you have to face the consequences. Either you accept whatever punishment I give you or I’ll let McGonagall handle it.” Blaise hung his head in defeat and walked off somewhere to sulk. Leaning against a wall, I shut my eyes and took a deep breath.
“You did the right thing. He needs to learn that there are consequences to his actions.” I didn’t bother opening my eyes as I knew who was talking to me.
“I just feel horrible for putting my best friend in detention. I know he deserves it for what he did but that doesn’t stop it being hard.”
“You have a responsibility to do what is best for the school; if you hadn’t punished him then you would be shirking that responsibility. Blaise will come round once he takes the time to understand why you have punished him. It was brilliant how you took control in there; I’ve only ever seen two other people have that much control and that was Harry and Dumbledore. McGonagall definitely made the right choice making you head boy.” I smiled and opened my eyes to look at the beautiful girl in front of me.
“But I couldn’t have done that if you hadn’t been made head girl.” Hermione smiled back and hugged me. I held her tight, savouring the feeling of her in my arms.
Slowly the other students began to trickle out of the hall.
“It looks like dinner is over. We should go back to the common room; we can grab some food from the kitchens.”
“Sounds like a plan. One thing I want to know is where all of the professors were?”
“That’s a good point. I’m sure Professor McGonagall will tell us if it is something important though.” Draco didn’t look so sure so I changed the subject to stop him thinking about it too much. “Come on, let’s go; we can discuss final arrangements for the graduation ball whilst we eat.” Draco simply nodded in reply and hand in hand we walked back to our common room.
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