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((Thanks to all of the wonderful reviews I’ve gotten over this story so far, I was so excited to keep it going! Thanks to all of you that reviewed! You guys rock! Anyways, I jumped ahead quite a bit in this so this chapter will start off in Draco’s point of view on the first day back to Hogwarts. Enjoy!!))

Chapter 5::
New Student

For some, time passes slowly. However, the summer between sixth and seventh year went by too fast for Slytherin’s one and only Draco Malfoy. Now, on September 1st, he finds himself on the Hogwarts Express doomed for one final year at wizarding school. Final year or not, he couldn’t have been in a more foul mood. Granted, the summer itself wasn’t all that great.

Now that Voldemort was back and rising quickly into power, he and his family were put through many difficult challenges over the last few months. Not only did the Dark Lord take over their home, but also over their lives. They weren’t to do anything unless instructed by him. Draco’s once spoiled childhood came to an abrupt end. From the moment the Dark Lord discovered that Dumbledore was not killed, the young Malfoy was put through hell. Even his mother, who had tried to help him on numerous occasions, was tortured beyond belief for her interference.

If there was anything that Draco Malfoy learned this summer, it was that emotions were a nuisance--a waste of time. He saw numerous family members and people he once cared about tortured and killed in front of his very eyes. As a child, Lucius Malfoy would tell his son that once the Dark Lord returned to power, their family would be limitless with power. A power that little Draco would dream about. Now, as a young adult, the power just didn’t seem worth it anymore. Neither did his own life.

In all honestly, Draco Malfoy had gone a little cold-hearted.

Sitting in an empty compartment with his one and only friend Blaise Zambini, Draco watched the landscape fly by. Part of him wishing, he could disappear.

“Malfoy? Are you hearing me?” Blaise looked at his friend with concern.

“No. Sorry, Blaise. Just dreading going back to that pathetic excuse of a school.” Actually, he was terrified. The man he tried to kill was still the headmaster.

Blaise nodded in understanding, “I know, mate. Remain out of his sight and you’ll be fine. Besides your father won’t let anything happen to you.”

Yeah, right. Draco’s father had more important things to worry about then him. “Let’s talk about something else.”

“Like I was saying before, did you hear? About the mud blood Granger getting murdered during the summer?”

A smirk played at Draco’s mouth. Of course he’d heard. The Dark Lord was in a particularly good mood at hearing about this at the beginning of the summer. He himself was a little more comfortable knowing she was out of the picture. His last year at Hogwarts was going to be hard enough without the bookworm walking about. Poor little Potter must be so distraught. That thought was almost enough to bring a smile to his face… almost.

“Yeah. I heard. Bloody bad news for Potthead and Weaslebee, huh?” He vaguely remembered one of the Dark Lord’s spies in the Ministry relishing about the mud blood’s funeral and all the whimpering faces.

Blaise smiled and nodded his head, “My mum went, she did. Said all the Order was there, standing guard at her casket. They probably thought DeathEaters would show and try to steal the filthy corpse.”

Raising an eyebrow, Draco asked, “Could they have been protecting an empty casket?”

“No way. My father was first to the scene himself. It was her alright. Said her body as a right bad sight.”

“Good.” He could do without the worry of Granger being alive somewhere. He’d probably have to be the one to track her down if she was.

“Hey, guys,” Pansy Parkinson slid open the compartment door, clad in her school uniform, “We’ll be there in two minutes, you best change. Our folks would not appreciate us getting in trouble so soon.”

Blaise smiled at her, “Right, thanks Pans.”

Even a fool could see that Blaise had a thing for Parkinson. His eyes lit up like fireworks about every time she came into a room. Having already dated her for a while, Draco could no longer see what the appeal to her was. She did somewhat look like a pug after all. Besides, if Blaise and her became a couple it would just be uncomfortable. He would be taking Draco’s seconds. Something that should never be done. So, Draco just rolled his eyes and started to peel off his clothes, not caring if Blaise of Pansy saw. They had seen or at least heard what had been done to him this past summer. The bruises and scars shouldn’t bother them and even if they did, they wouldn’t say anything about it. They’d be too frightened too.

Draco would see to that.

Compared to the last six years at Hogwarts, this year the castle seemed bigger. It wasn’t because it was charmed. It was because there was so many witches and wizards that didn’t let their children come back to Hogwarts. The tables were just as long, but there were several empty spaces and even fewer first years. This made certain people easy to find.

Like Potter and his bunch of lackeys. In the middle of the Gryffindor table, Harry Potter sat with Ginny and Ronald Weasley, Seamus Finnegan, Neville Longbottom, Luna Lovegood, and the Patil sisters. From the place where Draco was sitting, they looked like an army of guards around their precious trophy. Draco found it funny that someone with no family and little to live for can be held in such a high regard when people are trying to kill him and getting killed because of him.

Dumbledore’s voice was echoing throughout the hall about the new rules and regulations. Since Voldemort was back, it was important that all students be careful and blah, blah, blah. Draco had heard enough of this mumbo-jumbo. Little did anyone know, it was only a matter of time before the entire school be overtaken by DeathEaters and the Dark Lord himself. There was really no need to be careful. What more could they do to him then what they already have?

“These are dark times we live in. Now more so then ever. But, we must look to the good and hold onto that light that it within us and everyone around us. So, my children, use caution.”

Certain that Dumbledore was finished with his speech, Draco was prepared to get up and go to his dormitory. He needed away from all of this nonsense. However, as he began to rise, he saw Professor McGonagall stand to whisper into the old Headmaster’s ear. As if he’d forgotten what she was telling him, his eyes widened and he thanked her profusely. Draco just watched in suspicion.

“With all this excitement for the new year, I’d almost completely forgotten my last bit of news. This year, we have been graced with many new young faces.” Not really. “However, we have one more new face to add to our seventh year class. About a year ago I received a letter about a teenage girl down in Paris, France who lived a very difficult life. Not only was she an orphan with no family, she was also an extraordinary witch with great control over her power. After about a year of convincing, she finally agreed to join us here at Hogwarts. Before I bring her on out to be sorted, be aware that she is not like many of the students that go to this school. I expect you all to not only help her through this transition, but also to not push her. Though she seems quite certain of who she is.”

Blaise turned to Draco, “What’s this about? A new girl started her seventh year when she hasn’t even been through the first six?”

Pansy just laughed, “She will probably be some shy, insecure girl that Potter and his groupies will take under their wing.”

Draco said nothing. He honestly didn’t care about this girl, he just wanted to get back to his room and get some sleep. Who honestly cares about some pathetic girl?

“I would like you all to meet, Onyx Raven.”

As he said the name, the giant doors leading into the Great Hall opened and the girl that walked out was nothing anyone expected.

((Hahaha. I love doing cliffhangers. They are just so much fun. Please, don’t hate me. The next chapter you will get to see the new and improved Hermione Granger… or shall I say Onyx Raven. Please review!))

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