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A/N: So this chapter, in my personal opinion, will either make some people love me, and others might possibly hate me. (I'm sorry! It couldn't just be all cupcakes and roses!) But anyway, I will let you be the one who decides. Enjoy!





When Hermione woke from her sleep in the morning, she was greeted by the fluffy balls of snow covering her windows. She quickly sprinted up from her bed when she remembered that it was Christmas morning. She rushed down the stairs to find that her tree already bore many brightly wrapped presents underneath her tree. She noted the absence of Draco on her couch but just assumed he must have left sometime in the night and headed back to his own room. She bent down and picked up the first gift, this one was from Harry. As she unwrapped it, she found a small box that contained a crystal ball, a stand, and a small note:

Dear Hermione,

Happy Christmas! It’s really a shame you couldn’t be here with us but I wanted to make sure you didn’t feel left out. If you don’t know what to do with your gift, don’t worry, it’s nothing off of Trelwany. Just squeeze it a little and you will see. We all miss you and can’t wait to see you soon.

Love Harry.


She took the crystal ball in her hand and held it there for a few minutes. Then instantly a dazzling shade of cerulean light glowed and a fog was emitted. As the fog cleared she could see different happy memories of her, Harry, and Ron. It was almost like watching a little film. She gently placed that on her table with the stand. The next gift was from Ron. He too wrote her a small letter:

Dear Hermione,

I know Mum could have done a better job, but I just wanted to try my skills. I hope you like it, even though I know you’ll probably never wear it in public. Happy Christmas!

Love Ron.


Enclosed in his box was a disheveled looking sweater that was clearly poorly knitted, however it was endearing to Hermione that Ron tried to actually knit for her. She even laughed out a little when she noticed that the odd pattern in the middle was actually his futile attempts at patterning an ’H’. She then found a package from her parents that bore numerous trinkets and gifts from their travels in Turkey. She also received a brand new version of Hogwarts, A History that now glossed the names of Harry, Ron, and Hermione about their countless contributions to the school Compliments of Ginny.

She found another box that looked far more lavished than all the others. Hermione touched the soft velvet and unwrapped the silk ribbon upon it. As she opened the box there was a small piece of parchment on top that read:

Dear Hermione,

Oh God I miss you. I miss your laugh, your eyes, your little button nose, your scent. Anyway, I hope you’re not having a miserable time without me. I have a lot to tell you. I’ll be seeing you soon. I love you. Happy Christmas.

Yours always, Blaise.


As she removed the parchment she found the most beautiful bracelet neatly placed inside a silk pillow. It was gold with antiquated charms. She gingerly picked it up and observed them. There was a glittering snake completely encrusted in diamonds with emeralds for eyes. She spotted the Slytherin emblem on another little charm. It too was lavished with what Hermione safely assumed to be expensive gems. On another was a tiny pocket watch that still worked. There were shoes, locks, keys, and treasure chests. Finally Hermione found a ruby encrusted heart. She could easily tell that this was the newest addition to the bracelet. She gently unhooked it and opened it up. On either side of the tiny locket was a picture of her and then a picture of Blaise.

Hermione’s thoughts were running wild. This was clearly an antique. She saw different names engraved onto each of the tiny charms. She spotted Blaise’s mother’s name on it as well. Then it donned upon Hermione that this was a family bracelet passed down from generation to generation. A little scared but extremely excited she slipped the heavy bracelet on. As Hermione started getting up, she spotted a final box. It was a tiny one wrapped in a simple cotton cloth.

She opened the box to find a small corked bottle filled with a rosy liquid. Squeezed on the side of the box was a note.

Dear  Grang, erm Hermione,

Your smell is intoxicating. This will probably be the death of me.

Draco


She uncorked the small glass bottle and she could smell an enchanting mix of roses, blossoms, and lavenders. She smiled to herself; it seemed that Draco Malfoy actually made her perfume.

*

“Omf!” Hermione mumbled as she was so rudely pelted with a snow ball.

“Real mature Draco!” Hermione called out before Draco even relinquished his hide out.

“How did you know it was me?” Draco asked coming out from behind a corner.

“Who else would it be?” Hermione asked as she dried herself off with her wand.

Draco smiled as he walked up to her.

“Happy Christmas.” he replied. Hermione smiled.

“Happy Christmas.” Hermione replied by hugging him. She held her place a little longer than she should have, but Draco didn’t mind at all. Hermione always smelled breathtaking.

“Thank you for your gift. It was… beautiful.”

“Your welcome. I had to convince Slughorn to let me borrow some ingredients from his cupboard. It took a while to brew, but I was glad it worked out.”

“I wanted to give you this. It’s really nothing much, I barely had time to think of something that would possibly go up against your own gift.” Hermione commented softly as she handed Draco a small wrapped gift. He took it with a smile.

“Ha, Quidditch gloves. Thank you.” Draco smirked.

“They’re not just Qudditch gloves. They’re this new type that supposedly helps with some sort of protection. I didn’t really know much, but the store clerk went berserk when I asked him about it so I figured you would know what to do with them.” Hermione shrugged.

“Actually, yes I do know what to do with them. Thank you, it’s a lovely gift.” Draco replied hugging Hermione.

“Well it’s nothing as great as yours.” Hermione blushed.

“It was nothing.”

“So what are you doing today?” Hermione asked.

“I wasn’t quite sure yet why?”

“Fancy doing a little bit of ice-skating?” Hermione suggested.

“I would love to.”

“Meet me at the lake then in ten minutes?”

“I’ll be there.”

*

Hermione reached the lake before Draco. It was completely covered in thick ice. It strangely reminded her of Draco’s grey eyes. As she strapped on her ice skates she heard the crunching of the snow behind her. She could make out Draco’s body coming towards her.

“Well look who finally decided to come.” Hermione teased as she stood up on her skates.

“You can’t rush perfection Hermione.” Draco retorted as he slumped down to put on his skates.

Perfection indeed thought Hermione as she watched him. His skin was as light as the snow, glowing beautiful in the sunlight. He was the most angelic human being she had ever laid eyes upon. His golden hair caught rays of sunlight that almost glittered his beautiful face. It was strange to believe that this was the same person whom she loathed and despised all those years. He was so calm, gentle, compassionate that it drove Hermione insane.

“If you’re done ogling at me, then I suggest we make our way onto the ice.” Draco smirked. Hermione suddenly snapped back into reality. Blushing profusely he took her hand and led her to the ice.

And before she could stop the image from looming into her mind, she was suddenly lashed by the memories of all the times Blaise would make her blush immensely just by saying a mere hello. Happily, Draco shook her of her thoughts.

“Have you ever skated before?” Draco asked as the casually did a large circle, still holding hands.

“Yes a lot actually.” Hermione replied.

“Tell me more, about you. When you were younger, what were you like?” Draco inquired. It was so innocent that it made Hermione beam inside for some reason.

“Uh, well… I don’t really know what to say. My parents are dentists so I’ve always had pretty good teeth. With the exception of that one mishap a couple of years ago.” Hermione finished glaring at Draco.

His grin widened as he broke out into a booming laughter.

“I’m sorry.” Draco apologized still fashioning a huge grin plastered across his face. Hermione merely rolled her eyes.

“Tell me more.” Draco urged.

“Well, the day I got my Hogwarts letter my parents thought it was a horrible joke someone tried to push on me, but I believed it. I always had these outbursts of magic fume out at times when I was little. It helped explain so much. My parents never believed it; they told me not to get my hopes up and that it was just one cruel joke. You should have seen the looks on their faces when Dumbledore actually came to talk to them about Hogwarts.” Hermione smiled.

Draco loved the way she smiled. To him, it was a chain reaction; he would see her smile and he would have to smile back. It was beautiful, just like she was. It was hard being this close to Hermione and to not just pull her into his arms and kiss her endlessly.

“So tell me Draco, what was it like living in the most famous house in all of magical England?” Hermione smirked.

“Malfoy Manor? It’s huge, where do you want me to begin?” Draco asked.

“I always wanted to see it. I mean, I never really wanted to be confronted by your family, or you for that matter. But I remember hearing about it a little while back and I was just so curious to see it.” Hermione confessed.

“I’ll take you there sometime.” Draco offered.

“You don’t need to do that.” Hermione said.

“I’d like to. Besides, it would be a good change for you from going to the Weasley’s all the time.” Draco replied.

“I happen to like it at the Burrow.” Hermione replied in defense of Ron. Draco smirked and rolled his eyes at her.

“Whatever you say.” Draco commented. Hermione was suddenly angry at Draco. How dare he talk about Ron like that in front of her! She went to remove her hand from his grip.

However she accidentally tugged a little too hard, causing her to lose her balance. Instinctively she grabbed onto to Draco’s sleeve. Draco unprepared for the sudden pull fell too. Hermione’s body hit the ice first. She felt searing pain rush through her entire body. Luckily for her, Draco’s years of being seeker paid off as he reflexively put his arms out so as not to throw his entire body weight on Hermione.

“Are you alright?” Draco asked in a frantic voice.

“Ow. Yeah I think so. I just can’t get up right away.” Hermione whispered. The pain rippling through her head was unbearable.

Draco remained hovering above her. His harsh, rugged breathing was billowing onto her face. He casually pushed the hair that fell onto Hermione’s face behind her ears. He traced her face with his finger. She closed her eyes under his touch. Then without even thinking, because to him, being with Hermione was natural, he leaned down and kissed her. He loved the way she tasted. He sucked on her lower lip until she granted his tongue passage into her mouth. He left her lips for her skin by her neck. It drove him insane when he smelt the perfume he made for her.

“Um, er Draco?” Hermione said.

“Yes?” Draco replied still pressing his lips against hers.

“This is lovely and all, but my ass is frozen and my head is throbbing.” Hermione confessed.

“Oh right.” Draco snapped back into reality as he helped Hermione up. He scooped her up with one arm, and kept the other steady on her head.

“Thanks.” Hermione said as she got to her feet.

“Why don’t I help you get back to the ground in one piece.” Draco smirked. Hermione have him a scalding look which he dismissed by winking back.

He helped her get her skates off and put on her boots.

“Are you sure your head’s alright? You had quite a fall there. Do you want to go make sure with Madame Pompfry?” Draco suggested.

“No I think I’ll be alright. As long as I don’t have any sudden falls again, I should manage.” Hermione smiled.

“So what do you want to do now?” Draco asked once they were finally done.

“I have an idea.” Hermione smiled as she took Draco by the hand and led him back to the castle.

As Hermione led Draco through the empty corridors, Draco began wondering where they were going until she abruptly stopped. She turned around with a devious smirk that impressed even him. He was slightly surprised and concerned about her grinning face.

“Close your eyes.” Hermione demanded.

“Close my eyes? What for?” Draco asked raising his eyebrow.

“Fine if you won’t, then I’ll just have to blind fold you.” Hermione said unwrapping her scarf and closing Draco’s eyes with it.

“Is this really necessary?” Draco asked as she finished covering his eyes.

“It is completely necessary.” Hermione finished and continued leading him to her destination.

After walking a little farther, Hermione and Draco began ascending the Astronomy Tower. She held the door open for him where they were both welcomed by the soft crunchy snow beneath their shoes.

“You’re going to push me off a cliff aren’t you?” Draco said gravely. Hermione bursted out laughing.

“No you fool I’m not going to kill you!” Hermione replied jokingly. She summoned a ladder which she helped Draco climb.

“Hermione, you’re going to kill me aren’t you?” Draco replied almost convinced. Hermione continued to smirk without replying to him. She cast a couple of spells and then finally turned to Draco who looked positively petrified. She helped him sit down next to her.

“Alright, take off the blind fold.” Hermione replied. Draco quickly pealed off the scarf. For a moment he was speechless. He was sitting atop the roof of the Astronomy Tower. Below him he could see the entirety of Hogwarts, along with Hogsmeade and the beautiful rolling mountains and forests surrounding the school. He looked up and saw the snow cascading beside him, yet he felt nothing. It was almost an invisible bubble shielding them both from the cold and the snow. He turned to look at Hermione who was beaming at him.

“I figured we could talk… with an owl’s eye view.” Hermione replied blushing slightly.

“This is magnificent.” Draco replied slightly squeezing her hand.

They both leaned on their backs and slept next to each other looking at the grey sky and the snow that would never touch their warm flesh. They reminisced about previous years at Hogwarts and anything else that came to mind. It was a perfect escape. Hermione’s heart was so content with resting peacefully next to Draco. She could see the calm breathing of his chest inhaling and exhaling. The moment was perfect; she didn’t need to talk to him, she could just feel his presence and it was enough. Being this intimate with Draco flashed a whole new picture into Hermione’s head. For less than a second she had a vivid image of her and Draco together, holding hands, showing everyone their union. She saw herself visiting his Manor, walking in the gardens together. She saw herself making love to him every night because he was the one she was meant to be with. He sought her out, he chose her, and she willingly melted into his arms, his beautiful, perfect arms. It was as if his body was meant to fit into hers perfectly.

But then the crashing waves of reality ensued and Hermione was whipped back into reality which was that Blaise was her boyfriend, and that it was Blaise who truly should hold her heart. Almost as if on cue, she felt Draco’s hand slide its way into her own. She looked down at their entwined fingers and sighed; this was completely wrong. He was rubbing his thumb on her wrists until he felt the cold metal of the bracelet prick his skin. He pulled her hand up and rolled down her sleeve a bit. Hermione wasn’t quite sure why, but her heart suddenly raced as her breathing quickened.

Draco curiously examined the bracelet. He suddenly felt something that he had not for quite some time, a familiar burning sensation in the pit of his stomach. It was his dragon awakening from what it hoped to be an eternal slumber. Fire erupted in his insides as he venomously eyed the bracelet.

“Who gave this to you?” He asked calmly, even though he already knew the answer. Hermione slightly afraid to answer looked at Draco and began speaking.

“Um, Blaise did. For a Christmas gift.” She replied.

“You do know what this is right?” Draco asked almost with sarcasm in his voice.

“It’s a bracelet.” Hermione replied simply.

“Ha, it’s not just a bracelet, it’s a family heirloom. It has been passed down his family for centuries. The most prominent women in his family’s life have added a small token of themselves onto this bracelet. He told me his mother was saving it for his future wi…” Draco cut himself off. The burning reality was far too painful for him to imagine, let alone speak of.

“I’m sure he was just trying to send a meaningful gift.” Hermione commented trying to persuade Draco of his thoughts, although she knew her efforts were futile.

“Hermione, I’ve told you more about myself than anyone has ever known…” Draco began. He looked directly into her eyes. His stormy icicles pierced right through Hermione like daggers. But she did not look away; he made it impossible. He took both her hands into his and continued.

“I can’t really comment on behalf of Blaise, but I can on myself… I think you know by now my feelings about you. I won’t hide it anymore. And I get it if you’re not ready, I do, and I don’t mind waiting. I’m very patient when it comes to important matters; you of all people should know. Hermione I will wait until the sun stops rising in the morning and setting in the evening, I swear I will. But I need to know that you’re not only in it half heartedly. I need to know you’re waiting for me as well, only for me…”

“What are you asking me to do?” Hermione whispered. The color was long gone from her once beautifully flushed skin. Her eyes were hollow as they burned from looking into Draco’s.

“Choose.” Draco put simply.

“Choose…?”

“Is it me or is it Blaise.” Draco replied firmly.

Hermione’s mind raced. The inevitable decision was finally having to be made. She knew it would come, yet Draco’s assertiveness took her off balance. She began thinking frantically, but nothing made sense. Blaise, Draco, Blaise, Draco, Draco, Blaise, Draco, Blaise… No matter how many times the mantra replayed itself she never found an exit. It was a spiraling circle that had no definite answer. How was she to choose between the two pieces that made her whole?

Her eyes lined with tears. The stinging of the salty waters made Hermione blink, allowing her tears to fall onto Draco’s skin. He felt as though her tears would burn right through his flesh.

“Hermione…”

“I… I choose Blaise.”




Don't be too hard on me! :(

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