Anniversary: the date on which a monumentous occassion occurred. An occassion so great that it deserved to be remembered and celebrated once every year for the rest of time. Most anniversaries brought happiness to people as they looked back to a day in their life that was so special. This, however, was not the case for Hermione Granger. Today was her seventh wedding anniversary but she was not smiling or happily reminiscing on the magical day that bonded her husband and herself for life. In fact, she was drowning herself in paper work, at her office in the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, in order to try and forget the significance of this day.
As she organised the final documents for a case she had just finished a knock sounded on the cherry wood door in front of her. She knew who it was. It was two people who had done the same routine for the past three years on this day.
"Hey 'Mione", Harry Potter practically sang as he gave his best attempt at trying to sound cheerfull for his best friend.
"We brought breakfast!", Ron Weasley exclaimed as he walked into the spacious office with coffe and bagels in his hands.
"Thanks guys", Hermione mumbled as she pretended to be intrigued with the case file in front of her.
For the last three years Harry and Ron had brought her breakfast then tried to spend all day with her in order to 'brighten her day'. She knew they meant well and she knew they were really here to prevent Hermione from succumbing to the painful heartache that resided in her chest at this very moment. She was greatful that after all these years the two boys, who she loved so much, were still in her life but today she just wanted to be alone just as she had every year on this day since he went.
"So, whatcha doing today?", the red head asked as they all got seated around Hermione's mahogany desk.
"Staying right here and getting through these piles of paper work", was her monotonous response.
"Well, we were thinking we could go for lunch at Maggie's Cafe later then Gin wanted to know if you wanted to come to our house for dinner tonight? Have a few drinks and watch a few films. What do you say?", Harry asked with a hopefull glint in his emerald eyes.
"That sounds nice guys but I really have a lot to get through and I was just planning on staying in with a good book tonight, sorry".
She had not made eye contact with them from the moment they had stepped foot through her office door so they knew that she was lieing, just as they always did everytime they went through this routine on this day.
"Hermione, are y-".
"I'm fine, Ron, I just have a lot of work to do and not a lot of time to do it in so I would appreciate it if you two just went and got on with your own jobs and stopped fussing over me like I'm a child! I'm 27 years old for Melin's sake!", Hermione exclaimed.
She finally looked at them and they saw that this day was not getting any easier for her, even though it had been three years. Her eyes were rimmed with reddness, her normally golden skin was pale and blotchy and her hair was hanging in loose strands from a messy bun that she had attempted this morning. Harry and Ron had hoped that maybe this year she would be a little better but they were wrong, if anything Hermione seemed worse.
As they stared into her brown eyes that had lost their golden sparkle, they knew that their plan to make her happy on this awful day was once again futile. With that, they said their goodbyes and left Hermione on her own as she wished.
She breathed out a deep breath that she hadn't even realised she had been holding in. Hermione hated this day and with good reason too. She tried to forget it even existed but no matter what she did or how much she threw herself into her work, she could not shake the memories from her head and the unbearable sadness from her heart. She put down her quill and closed her eyes, trying to make sense of the life she lived. She could remember being happy, so happy she felt like her life was a dream, but now all she felt was constant pain and sadness and today it was even worse. She let her head fall onto her arms on her large desk as the memory enveloped her.
"Oh gosh, Gin, I can't do this!", Hermione cried as she stood there with her hair perfectly curled and her make up effortlessly applied.
"Yes you can", Ginny said as she took hold of her friend's shoulders and looked her dead in the eyes, "You can because you love him and without him you wouldn't be whole. Without him the world wouldn't seem right and you wouldn't fit in it. You two are made for each other and this day is just a celebration of that. It's nothing to be worried about and it's nothing to be nervous about. It's something to be happy about. You're going to spend the rest of your days with the love of your life and there's nothing scary about that. So pull yourself together and get that beautiful dress on".
The two women smiled at these words for they had heard them before.
"That's what I said to you on your wedding day", Hermione grinned.
"Yes you did and it worked wonders. I know how your feeling but you were right then just as I am right now. So come on, we can't leave him waiting too long".
With that, Hermione picked up her bag and started to change into the gorgeous gown that was inside it. Once her tiara was properly in place and her shoes were on her feet, her Father came to collect her and the wedding party headed down the stairs and into the grounds of the grand estate.
As she turned the corner, with her arm in her Dad's, her breath caught in her throat as she looked around. Sparkling butterflies could be seen flitting through the air graciously as the golden sun shone on the hundreds of guests. Pale silver chairs adorned the freshly cut green grass and white roses stood on columns at the end of each row. She could feel the sun glowing on her tanned skin but the soft breeze in the air prevented everyone from overheating.
She saw many faces as she made her way down the aisle. Her friends from school and work, her family and important figures of society that her in-law's had insisted she invite were all seated around the garden but there was only one face she was looking for and she found it in no time. There, stood atop of the white podium was her husband to be. She had never seen him look so ravishing. His hair was primped to perfection, as it always was, and the metallic grey suit and crisp white shirt emphasised the astonishing colour in his eyes. It was his smile that brought out the beauty in him though, for she had never seen a bigger grin adorn his sharp features.
Hermione finally reached the steps up to the white podium that her love stood on and, as her Father gave her away, her soon to be husband took her hands in his.
"You look... like an angel", he breathed so quietly that only she could hear it.
His words were true though as Hermione had never looked so beautiful in her life. Her honey coloured locks were smooth and curled to perfection which flawlessly matched her simplistic yet radiant make up. A diamond tiara sat on top of her head and it perfectly complimented the angelic gown she wore. It was as white as white could be, starting at the strapless top with a sweet heart neckline that fitted her slender frame perfectly. Around her slim waist was thick row of dazzling crystals that ran in an intricate pattern all the way around to the back of the dress. The expensive white material stayed close to her skin untill it slightly flared out at her thighs. As it reached her knees the gown flowed out further untill it reached to floor, hiding her strappy diamond heels.
She could hardly remember her vow's as the couple had got lost staring into each other's eyes and smiling throughout the whole cermemony. Nothing in the world mattered more to them than each other and that's how it would always be. As her lover slipped on her wedding band above her large engagement ring, after she had put on his, they kissed their first kiss as husband and wife.
She couldn't believe it. She had never felt euphoria like it. She was now a married woman but, most importantly, she was married to the man of her dreams and the love of her life. She was married to Draco Malfoy.
Seven years they had been married but three of them she had spent alone. She had never felt despair like it after being left without even a decent explanation as to why. She had been a caring wife and even after four years of marriage, and the two years before that, they were still as much in love as they had been when they had fallen for each other. She was his other half and he was hers. They made each other complete and without one, the other was nothing. That's the way she had felt anyway, and that was the way she thought Draco felt too but clearly she was wrong. Why else would he had gone leaving only a letter for his wife? It was the only plausible explanation Hermione could find for his sudden departure but his final words to her cast shadows of doubt on this.
Hermione returned home anticipating the warmth and comfort of her husband's embrace, after a grueling day in court. She walked through the foyer and into the cream lounge that she and Draco loved to spend time in just reading or cuddling or even watching the television that she had persuaded him to install. However, her husband was not sat there with his feet up on the coffee table reading the paper as he usually was when she returned late home from work.
"That's odd", she said aloud.
Deciding to try the bedroom she headed up the double staircase to the master suite. Her hand glided over the rich wooden banister as her feet padded on the soft white carpet. She and Draco had chosen this home together and, after months of fighting and disagreeing on houses, they had finally found this. Situated in the country side of Wiltshire, not far from Malfoy Manor, was where they found their dream house. It was large, as Draco couldn't fathom living in a small cosy cottage as Hermione had wanted, but it suited Hermione's taste as it still possessed warmth despite it's vastness. They loved it here and they knew that the rest of their lives would be spent in this beautiful home.
As she reached their bedroom she was surprised to also find it empty.
"Where could he be?", she whispered to the empty space.
Just as she was about to leave she noticed something lying on her bedside table. Intrigued as to what it was, she picked it up and sat on the king sized bed. In her perfectly manicured fingers was an envelope addressed to her. She knew it had been written by Draco as she could recognise his handwriting anywhere. Opening up the envelope and unfolding the parchment, Hermione began to read.
'My dearest wife,
I've been through a lot of difficult times in my life, some so troublesome that some people could not even imagine, but this is without a doubt the hardest thing I've ever had to do. Please know that I am so unbelieveably sorry but circumstances have sadly changed the path I must take and, therefore, the life I was meant to share with you. I'm afraid I just can't elaborate more and I know that will burn you up inside but I just can't. Hermione, I love you more than life itself. You are the air that I breathe and the reason for the beating of my heart. Without you I wouldn't be the man that I am today. You made me a better person when you gave me the chance that no one else was willing to give me. You, one of the people that I had continually teased througout Hogwarts, saw the real me. You know more than anyone the person that I am inside and I hope beyond all hope that you never forget that person. I can't bare the thought of putting you through so much pain but I'm afraid I must. Hermione, my life with you has been the best part of my life so far and it undoubtedly will be for the rest of my days. You truly are the most amazing person I have met. No one in this entire universe could compare to you. You are the most loving, sweetest, caring and craziest person I have ever met. Even to this day you still surprise and astound me and that's why I love you. Not one day is the same when I am with you and every time you open that beautiful mouth of yours you make me fall in love with you even more. I need you to know, Hermione, that I love you and I will never stop loving you. I couldn't be more sorry for putting you through this. Please don't forget me for I won't forget you. You will constantly be in my thoughts and my heart as that is where you belong.
I love you, my angel.
Always will you be with me,
She couldn't breathe. She couldn't move. She couldn't comprehend the words that were right in front of her face. Draco was gone. He wasn't come back. He had left her. Her husband, who she loved more than anyone in the world had left her and he hadn't even given her a proper explanation as to why.
"No. No. This isn't happening", she cried as she stood up and walked over to their walk in wardrobe.
Seeing the room half bare felt like someone had stabbed in her the lungs. His clothes, his shoes and even his stupid hair products were all gone. She couldn't take anymore as she sunk to her knees and cried. She had never cried like that before, in fact she had never been one to really cry, but she just couldn't figure out what else she could do. She was supposed to be his wife! He was meant to love her! What had she done so wrong to make him leave her like she never even mattered.
She lay there on the floor wailing for hours as painful sobs coursed through her body.
It was her Mother-in-law, Narcissa, who had found her in the morning on that terrible day. A woman who she had grown extremely close to, after they had settled their differences, but now she did anything she could to avoid her. Narcissa was a reminder of the husband who had abandoned Hermione and it made her sick. She was a reminder of Draco. Draco, who she hadn't even seen for just over three years. She had tried to file for divorce when the three year mark had hit, as she could have one granted without him present due to neglect, but she just couldn't do it. She had changed her name back to Granger but the thought of getting a divorce was just too much. She couldn't forget him and she couldn't deny that her love for him was still as strong as the day they had said I do, even if she did despise his very being at the same time.
Unlike the previous two years, where she had managed to distract herself just a fraction enough to keep her mind engaged, Hermione found that this year it was not working. This year she could not block out the memories of her wedding day that were now laced with sorrow. This year all she could do was apparate straight home and cry all through the night until sleep took over her.
Well that's the first chapter! I hope you all enjoyed it! I would love it if you left me a review to let me know your thoughts and feelings on the beginning of this story, it really would be appreciated and I ALWAYS respond to them :) Keep your eyes open for the next chapter which will be coming soon! Happy reading, MM :)
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