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Chapter 10 : Chapter 9 - Hand Written Apology
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Hand Written Apology
Draco sat in the study bent over the Brobdingnagian desk that somehow dominated most of the large room.
Discarded versions of the letter he was attempting to write lay around him, curled tubes of parchment stained with ink.
He needed to tell her, explain to her what had happened.
She hadn’t been back since they danced in the ballroom. Clearly she didn’t want to see him and he wasn’t going to change anything by forcing his presence on her. So he’d cleared his desk of anything business related and sat himself down the green leather chair.
He was now on version fourteen, he thought, but it might have been less. He’d certainly written her name that many times since he’d started.
It wasn’t as if he didn’t know what he wanted to say, but whichever way he tried it sounded insincere. A lot of the time it was nearly right, but something didn’t quite work, and he’d never been the most creative with words.
He sighed and screwed up yet another roll of parchment.
Through the open door of the study he saw the dancing light in the foyer fire flare green and fade again.
“Draco?” called a voice from the hallway. “Are you in?”
She appeared in the doorway before he could reply, she looked worried and a little stressed.
“Who are you writing to?” She asked indicating the scattered parchment.
“I was trying to write to you.” He cleared his throat. She looked a little taken aback by the notion. “Would you like a drink? Did you want to sit down?”
“Coffee please.” She said as she sat down opposite him. He stood and went over to the coffee machine on the corner. “Latte one sugar, right?” he looked over his shoulder and she nodded in response.
They waited in silence for her drink to be ready, despite everything, although there was tension in the room, the silence wasn’t uncomfortable.
He put the large mug down on the desk in front of her and sat down; he took a deep breath.
“Look Hermione, I wanted to apologise, properly, but I couldn’t get it right.” He said gesturing to the many versions of his letter and she smiled briefly before seeming to sink back in on herself she reached for the coffee and sipped it, seemingly for something to do. “What’s wrong?” he asked, concerned.
She looked as though she was about to say something but took another sip of coffee instead.
Again she didn’t answer but drank some more coffee. This time Draco noticed something glinting in the light from the fire as she did so. On her left hand.
“Hermione, what’s that on your finger?”
She choked slightly on the Coffee.
“It’s an Engagement Ring.” She said quietly.
She cleared her throat.
“And you said yes?” he queried calmer than he felt. After everything, she had gone back to him and had now come by to rub it in his face.
“Well, no, actually.”
“What do you mean?”
She took a deep breath before replying.
“Well, we went for a walk in the garden and he got down on one knee and asked me. Everyone else must have been watching out of the window or something because before I could reply they all rushed out to congratulate us." She paused and stared down at her cup as she said the next words. "In the confusion he put the ring on my finger.”
Draco found himself surprised that she would chose to tell him of all people the details of her engagement. The other thing that was bugging him was why she was still wearing it, if she hadn’t said yes then she wasn’t engaged and the ring was a lie. Why had she let Ron assume that she had said yes, why hadn’t she voiced her disquiet then, she wasn’t normally one to keep her opinions to herself.
“So why are you still wearing it?”
“I don’t know.” She admitted “I love him, I do, I…”
“Are you trying to convince yourself or me?” he asked kindly, clearly she was very upset about this.
She gave him a scathing look.
“Draco," she dropped the scathing look and glanced down at her hands. "Do you think it’s possible to be in love with two people at once?”
“Yes, I do.”
“I don’t know what to do Draco.”
“I do.” She looked at him curiously. “No matter how I feel, or how you feel about me, you are still wearing that ring.” This was true, it had to mean something. She hadn’t explored every option before giving up and if she didn’t do that then he didn’t stand a chance.
“Until you know you don’t love him any more, which may or may not happen, you’re going to go through with this.”
A curious look crossed her face, she seemed almost confused by his understanding of her, but really it was one of the most obvious things about her. She’d been narrow minded in her youth and would only believe something unless she could prove it, her aversion for divination and fairly deep rooted avoidance of flying on a broomstick were enough to confirm it.
“How do you know that?”
“Because you always do the right thing.” Again true, and right didn’t always have to mean legal, as long as it was morally correct she could over look legality like no one else.
“But what if I don’t want to!” she said slamming the now empty cup down on his desk.
That surprised him, although in hindsight it shouldn’t have. She never liked having things like that pointed out to her even by her friends.
“I’m not going to try and make you decide, I’m deciding for you, I want you to be happy and you won’t be until you give things a chance with Ron.”
“He’s the reason you ran out after we kissed and that hurt me, I wanted so much to stop you leaving but I couldn’t make myself. You’ve changed me Hermione, every time I wanted something before now I’ve just taken it but I can’t do that to you." He admitted, repaying her telling him the truth about her engagement by telling her the truth about this. "I can’t risk you being unhappy. You need to know something for certain before you change your mind and I’m giving you the chance to do that.”
“Please Hermione; just let me do the right thing for once.” She nodded slowly as a tear slid down her cheek.
“Thank you.” She stood and walked round the desk to stand in front of him. Bending down she kissed him on the cheek. “Goodbye Draco.”
She turned on the spot and apparated away.
That was it.
It was over.
She was gone.
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