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wonderful chp image made by ariana_tithe @TDA

She knew she was in trouble, even before she stepped through the door. She was now facing the harsh reality that lurked inside the Granger household. In the pit of her stomach a knot tugged tight. Cringing as she stood before him. The noise was unbearable but she had heard it all before. It was like an illicit fight club had taken permanent resident in their lounge. Closing her eyes she tried to think of floating away above the clouds, but the clouds did not protect her.

Why did he do this?  She had only been late for a mere ten minutes.  Rising up from the floor, she avoided his murderous glance. Stiffening her upper lip she continued to be shouted at.

“Look at me when I’m talking to you, you insignificant swine!”

Slowly lifting her gaze she made eye contact with the monstrosity that had beaten her since she was twelve.

“When I say fucking five o’clock I mean fucking five o’clock not ten past fucking five!”

“I'm sorry daddy, the bus was late I didn’t...” 

“Don't make excuses Hermione. I’ve had it up to here!” he thre his hand up to his neck, Hermione flinched with a fright.

“I'm really sorry daddy, I promise it wont happen again.” Quickly wiping a tear away from her face he shook his head and trudged up the stairs to get changed.

Hermione slowly staggered to her room. Looking in the mirror she examined the tender, aching bruises now swelling up on her face and on the side of her torso.  She walked to the bathroom and spat out the metallic taste of blood and brushed her teeth. Painfully changing into a three quarter black dress, she grabbed an olive cropped jacket and slipped it over her delicate and hand marked arms. Sitting at her vanity table she wiped her eyes and blew her nose. Slowly she applied a thick layer of foundation to her face, adding eye shadow and all the rest. She took off downstairs where her mother was cleaning red stains off the carpet where Hermione had just stood moments before..

Her mother did not acknowledge her nor did Hermione even try. Her mother knew what her father had just done and did not have the guts to stop it. She never had. Hermione hated her as much as her own father. She could have stopped this from happening long time ago. If only she had left him when she had the chance.

Her father came boucning down the stairs too lazy to bend his knees. He looked up from fixing his tie and smiled at them both.

“Look at my two beautiful girls.” Hermione gave a weak smile and stood to leave. Almost to frightened to ask ,she bowed her head to look at her toes peaking out of her black high heels.

“Daddy, would it be ok if we stopped at Diagon alley? I need to get a few supplies before I leave for school tomorrow.” Waiting for the blow to come she was surprised when he replied.

“Sure well go there now before dinner.” It was amazing how he thought being nice would fix what he had done. It was how he made sure he had control over them.  She felt like a puppet.

Arriving at the magical little town Hermione brought her parents into a small shop that sold wizarding stationary. They decided to look around while she went to search for some quills. As she was browsing, a tall and handsome blonde man walked up to her. It was strange he seemed familiar. Like somoone she knew. The shadow still covered him as he closed in on her.

“Good afternoon Granger.” Hermione was shocked. War certainly changed a person.

“Hello Malfoy.” She replied not trusting her self to say anymore. She really wasn’t in the mood for a meaningless retort battle. She continued scanning the shelves and ignored him.

“Hey Granger I umm, well after the war I made myself a lot of goals. Goals I intend to achieve"

"We'll I wish you the best of luck then."

"I wasn't finished"

"I'm sorry, do continue." Hermione was amazed. This was not how a typical meet with Draco went. Did he want something?

 "One of my goals was to apologize to you. For all the harm I may have caused you all the years we’ve known each other.”

Hermione was touched. not to metnion amazed. Maybe a Malfoy could change after all.

"Granger, if you keep that big mouth of your's open you'll catch flies" He laughed and waavved his hand up and down infront of her face, in an attempt to bring her back to reality.

“Uhh," She blinked and closed her mouth. " Thank you Malfoy I uh... really appreciate that.”

“Look I hope you don’t mind but I would like to call you by your first name.”

Now she was really surprised and strangely overwhelmed by this sudden act of kindness.

“Yes that would be fine...Draco?” She gave him a smile. A twinkle in her eye. Draco smiled back. He was staring at her. Staring right through her. Reading every hair and every freckle on her face. She became a bit uncomfortable. 

Examining her face he brought his hand up to her jaw. He tilted her head to the side to get a better look at the large bruise cleverly masked by the make up she was wearing.

“Hermione is everything alright?” She quickly drew her head out of his smooth masculine hands. Just as she was about to come up with some clever story about how she fell down the stairs, her father came walking down the isle. Spotting the tall man he quickly grabbed his daughters arm. Squeezing it hard, a  look of discomfort showed on Hermione's face.

Draco caught it. A pang of anger shot through his body like an electric shock. Quickly thinking he outstretched his right hand.

“Evening sir, I'm Draco Malfoy. You must be Mr Granger. A pleasure to meet you.”

Hermione’s father looked at his hand. Regretfully he let go of Hermione and shook it firmly.

Hermione resisted rubbing her already bruised arm.

“If you don’t mind Mr Malfoy my daughter is needed.  "Good evening sir” he slightly bowed his head. Draco returned the gesture and watched as Hermione was manhandled out of the store.

Hermione was released from her fathers death grip as soon as they reached the street outside the Leakey Cauldron. With a sneer on his face he led the two women to the muggle restaurant further uptown. 

As they reached the door Hermione’s father took his mothers arm. Gaining his composure he pranced into the elegant room his head held high. Hermione followed quietly behind. They reached a table of gentleman all sipping alcohol like it was tap water. A man with greasy charcoal black hair rose from his seat and shook her father’s hand.

“Glad you and you beautiful family could make it Granger” The man who looked like he was in his late forties started scanning Hermione up and down. She suddenly felt naked under his gaze. She was wishing she had wore jeans and and a very large jumper.

“Please take a seat, you and your wife can sit over there. However there’s a spare seat over by me, Miss Granger.” He gestured to the seat next to him, a grin on his face. She politely smiled and sat down.

The night went by and the men got drunker. The Boss soon became very unpleasant to sit next to.

“My my,  you are a beauty aren’t you my darling.” His breath was foul as he leaned a little closer. 

"A Diamond in the rough."

Hermione politley smiled and shifted in her seat, trying to move as far away from him as her seat could possibly allow. It wasnt much.

“Your father was right, he’s lucky to have you as a daughter. So striking and obedient.”

Obedient? What was she a dog?

His hand slipped on her leg and started caressing her thigh. Becoming uncomfortable she moved a little in her seat. His hand started to slide under her dress and inside her thigh.

“So young and desirable” His lips were closing in on her neck. Panicking she couldn’t move.

“Why so stiff?” He laughed moving his hand closer and closer to her knickers.

Hermione stood up so fast that her glass on the table fell over. Water spilt on the boss's lap and he yelled with frustration. The entire room went silent. She quickly walked towards the exit.

“Ma’am may I... “The waiter asked but was left stunned.

She burst through the door crying. Her eyes were so clogged with tears she could barely see whom she had bumped into.


Looking up she noticed Draco’s worried face looking down on her from above. He gently grabbed her arms and pulled back.

“Are you ok?” 

She sniffed and looked around, trying not to cry. She finally succumbed.  She wept, so loudly her body started to tremble. Draco was stunned. He looked at her in awe. Hermione collapsed against his body asking for support. Draco obliged and wrapped his arms around her body. Rubbing her back and offering soft cooing noises.

A loud slam was heard as the restaurant door opened. Hermione jumped out of her skin and Draco whipped his head up.

“Hermione what are you doing!” He growled. Reluctantly letting go of Draco she walked towards her father.

“He was touching me daddy!” she whimpered pleading for him to understand.
Hoping he would waltz right back in there and demand an answer to why his boss was sexually harassing his daughter. She was disappointed.

“So what Hermione, let him have his fun!” he said yelling once more. Draco stood frozen to the spot. Hermione didn't understand. let him have his fun? This was absurd.
“What do you mean daddy, I'm not his!”

“Yes you are, as of a few days ago I allowed him to court you, In return I would have his job, now get your fucking ass back at that table now!”

Hermione couldn’t believe it. She had been tricked into attending by her own father.

Draco was in utter outrage. This man was evil and Draco knew evil when he saw it. This was her father, the man who should take care of his little girl. Watching the scene he was horrified.

“No.” Hermione whispered.

“What did you say?”

“I said no!” As quickly as she had said it, he moved to strike her. She covered her face and moved backwards. She was dizzy a feeling she was very familiar with. 

Draco was angry. He felt the devil being born inside his own chest. The heat made him fierce. Striding forwards he punched the man, staggered against the stony wall. Grabbing his shirt in his fists, inches from her attacker. His face twisted with rage and fury. Draco whipped out his wand and pussed it so hard in the man's neck he became lost for breath.

“Don't you ever! touch a woman like that you filty muggle scumbag!”

Hermione wriggled towards the sidwalk, she was cold. She proped herself up on one arm, watching as her once archenemy stepped in and fought her battle.

Glaring at Granger for a few more daunting seconds Draco let go.

C’mon Hermione, I’ll take you home.” Draco draped an arm around her shoulders and led her to the curb. He flagged down a cab.

The journey home was a silent one. All words were spoken through actions. Hermione cuddled against his athletically built body and he offered her his coat for warmth.

When they arrived Draco led her to the door. Grabbing the spare key from under the pot plant beside the door she unlocked it and turned towards Draco.

“I... umm... well...I want... I'm sorry you had to witness that.” She said staring up into his grey eyes.

“But I'm glad that you were there. Thank you Draco”

Draco pulled her in for one last hug. She could hear his steady heart beat.

She was so beautiful. She fit perfectly in his arms.

“I guess I’ll see you tomorrow,” 

Hermione pulled away and nodded. Draco took her hand and lightly kissed it.

“Goodnight,” he said and turned to leave.

She watched as he walked back to the cab. Closing the front door she knew it.

Things would never be the same again. A single act of kindness had changed her life.

No longer would they be Granger and Malfoy. Two rivalries till the day they died. A new chapter had begun filed with excitement and romance. Hermione smiled. For the first time in six weeks, she had been loved.

A/N Hello readers. I hope you enjoyed this one shot. I certainly enjoyed writing it whilst I was awake all night during the closure of the queue. Please review and tell me what you thought. It will help me to see what you all enjoy reading and I will hopefully be able to write something better and more extrodinary.  Thank you for reading :D

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