[will put chapter image up soon]
This Isn’t Normal
“These seats are brilliant!” Harry grinned as they made the way towards the box. “You can see everything from here!”
“Who are playing again?” Hermione asked.
“The Chudley Canons versus the Holyhead Harpies.” answered Ginny.
“This better be good.” Draco said.
“Behave.” Hermione muttered to him as she followed them into the box.
“When are Neville and Luna getting here?” Ginny asked.
“We're here.” Neville said, suddenly appearing next to them.
Draco almost fell out of his seat in surprise, as they took the seat next to him.
“Sorry we're late.” Luna said.
“You're right on time actually.” Hermione smiled. The teams were now walking onto the pitch. Everyone was on their feet cheering, all except for Draco and Hermione who were still sitting.
“Having fun?” Draco shouted over the loud cheering.
“Thank you for doing this!” she replied.
The match started and the stadium became louder and louder. Hermione looked down to the sidelines, where the unmistakable Astoria sat. She was hard to miss, with her long wavy brown hair and bright red tight skirt.
Hermione found it hard to concentrate on the game; she was too busy thinking about the night before, at Pansy's dinner party. Astoria had been so jealous and had said a lot of hurtful things to Hermione. And this morning, Draco had tried to make it up to her by bringing her to the Quidditch match. He didn't even complain when Hermione had wanted to bring her friends.
They were only half an hour into the game and the Chudley Canons were ahead by 250 while the Holyhead Harpies had 200. Now they were just waiting for Andrew to catch the snitch. Hermione watched as he followed the snitch, weaving in and out of other players. The seeker on the other team was far behind, which meant Andrew had the advantage of catching it.
He was flying incredibly fast around the pitch. Hermione noticed that he was truly brilliant at his job. Someone like him definitely deserved to be with someone great, someone that's not Astoria. The crowd was silent as they watched Andrew reach out and grab the golden snitch.
Half the stadium erupted in cheers while the other half where groaning and shouting abuse.
“Oh my god! We won!” Ginny squealed, and began hugging practically everyone in the box. She even hugged Draco, and he didn't look uncomfortable.
“Hermione, are you going to get my autograph now?” Harry asked hopefully.
“Er... of course.” Harry looked so happy at that moment that Hermione didn't want to upset him by saying she didn't want to bother Andrew. Hermione made her way down to the ground, followed by Draco, to where Andrew was celebrating with his team mates. His eyes lit up when he saw Hermione.
“Hermione, Hi!” he grinned.
“Hi Andrew. Er... could you sign an autograph for my friend?” she asked him.
He smiled his million pound watt smile. “Sure.”
Hermione pulled out a pen.
“Who shall I make it out to?”
“Teddy Lupin please.” Harry answered, suddenly appearing next to them.
“You're Harry Potter.” Andrew stated, looking very astonished.
“Yeah I am.” Harry said as he shook Andrew's hand. “I'm a big fan of you Andrew.”
“I'm an even bigger fan of you, Harry! You're the boy who lived.”
It wasn't long before the boys got into a full swing conversation about something along the lines of quidditch.
“Shall we go now?” Draco asked after a while. Hermione had forgotten that he was standing next to her.
“Depends where to.” she said, turning around to face him.
“Well we could go to–”
“You two are just everywhere nowadays aren't you?”
They turned around to see Astoria walking towards them. She was followed by reporters.
“Where's your engagement ring? Not wearing it today, Granger?”
A crowd had started to gather around them, they were all interested in what was happening.
“Don't you have anything better to do?” Draco asked annoyed.
“No. Not really.” she answered back. “I just came to support my boyfriend.”
Ginny, Luna and Neville were now running to join them as they noticed the crowd.
“What the hell is going on?” Ginny yelled.
A few team members stepped back as they heard Ginny. She was a scary lady, that's for sure.
“Astoria Greengrass?” Neville exclaimed. “What's she doing here? Shouldn't she be at some fashion show in Milan or something?”
“Shut up Longbottom.” Astoria hissed. “Like I said, I'm here to support my boyfriend.”
“You and Malfoy are over!” Ginny said. “Or where you so hammered that you don't remember?” A few people laughed at what Ginny said, including Draco, Harry, Andrew, Neville and Luna. The press had bought out their quills and were quickly writing down everything.
“I don't remember this being any of your business Weasley. You good for nothing–”
“Shut up you bimbo!” Hermione yelled at the annoying woman. She didn't mind that much when Astoria was being a bitch to her, but no one messes with her friends.
“Did you just tell me to shut up?” Astoria asked, as all eyes fell on Hermione.
“Yes! Unless you want me to repeat it again, you bitch!” It was clear that Astoria was pissing her off.
“Just because you are engaged to him, doesn't give you the right to start shouting at me! You stupid mud–”
“Engaged?” Ginny and Luna chorused.
There were a few gasps in the crowd, and people started to murmur. Draco and Hermione had both agreed to forget about the whole ordeal and pretend that the night before had not happened. And here was Astoria, making it incredibly difficult.
“Wait... you haven't even told your own best friends?” Astoria asked, with a mocking look. She was clearly enjoying this.
Before Hermione was given a chance to reply, Draco had grabbed her by the hand and pulled her through the crowd. He looked like he was going to murder someone, hopefully Astoria.
“That fucking bitch!” Hermione exclaimed after they had apparated away. “She's such a witch!”
“Well, she is technically a witch.” Draco said.
“You're not helping Malfoy!”
“Sorry.” he said, even though he didn't look it.
“All that bitch wants it attention! She probably knew that we weren't really engaged! But she had to bring it up, didn't she! What does she think she's going to achieve by doing this? Doesn't she know that everyone's sick of her? Even Andrew! You could see it in his eyes that he was sick of the bitch! Gosh, now the whole of the wizarding world will think we're engaged! It's bad enough that we have to be 'dating', how am I meant to explain this to my friends... and my parents? Am I meant to tell them that we really are engaged and we were keeping it a secret? Or that it was all some stupid joke that Astoria was playing at? Oh, wait no! We can't say that! She’s got proof! Ron saw the ring and so did Andrew! I am so screwed!”
Hermione turned to Draco. He had a smug look on his face.
“Are you going to say anything?” she retorted angrily.
Draco shrugged. “It looked like you were on a roll, I didn't want to interrupt.”
Hermione fell against the chair opposite him and sighed.
“I guess the only thing we can do is ignore them. You can still wear the ring; just tell them what it is. A normal ring.” Draco said.
“I doubt they'll believe that now. We're in way to deep! This is going to make the papers tomorrow!” she stated.
“I know.” Draco agreed.
Hermione was sick and tired of playing this game, pretending to be someone else. At first it seemed like the right thing to do. She was only trying to help out a friend that desperately needed her help.
“This isn't what I expected.” Hermione began. “When I agreed to help you, I didn't know the jealous ex girlfriend would be part of the package.”
“I probably should have warned you.” he leaned back against his chair.
Draco felt horrible for what he had done to her. He could have chosen anyone yet he chose her. He knew that she would accept the offer; it was just the kind of person she was, someone who would help, regardless of who you are, and not expect anything back.
“Malfoy, I'm starving.” Hermione moaned. They had been in his office since they left the quidditch match, so it was no surprise that she was starving.
“So am I.” Draco stood up and walked out of his office, and then seconds later came back in with a picnic basket.
“Did you foresee this situation?” Hermione jokingly asked.
Draco chuckled. “Amanda used to make me lunch every day, she would leave them behind her desk.”
“Amanda's your secretary, I'm guessing?”
“Yeah.” he said, opening the basket and taking out sandwiches and bottles of water before placing them on the floor. “She's more of a sister though.”
“Are we eating on the floor?”
“It is a picnic basket,” he said slowly, as if she was a child. “Let's have a picnic.”
Hermione rolled her eyes before joining Draco on the floor.
“So... how do you and Andrew know each other?” Draco asked taking a bite out of his ham sandwich.
“Why do you want to know?”
“I should know all about my girlfriend's friends. Including the Italian ones.” he winked.
“I'm not your girlfriend.” Draco looked up and gave Hermione a smoldering look.
“I thought we were engaged.” he mimicked. Hermione threw a water bottle on him that nearly missed him, but instead hit his head.
“Ow!” he cried out in pain.
“Oh my god! Are you okay?” she leaned forward and placed a comforting hand on his head.
“That really hurt!” he exclaimed.
“I'm sorry.” she apologized, feeling guilty. “You were supposed to move!”
“I didn't know! God woman, you're so violent!” he groaned, a smirk playing upon his lips.
Hermione instantly shoved him backwards, secretly relieved that he was ok and a little outraged at his little act.
“You looked so worried!” he laughed, sitting up properly and rubbing his back.
“I was worried, you idiot!”
“You deserved it!” he said, ignoring the death glare he was receiving.
They ate and talked, keeping the conversation light and comfortable.
They talked about family, friends, career, etc. They learnt a lot about themselves in that short period of time. Maybe it's because they felt obligated to talk to each other, in order to avoid awkwardness.
Hermione told him about Andrew, how they met and how they departed. And in return Draco told her about his history with Astoria, and to Hermione's surprise, they went way back.
Apparently Astoria's family wasn't involved with the death eaters, her family had fled when Voldemort had returned. They moved to France, where Astoria and Daphne started school in Beauxbatons. After the war, when Voldemort was destroyed, they returned. They were not sent to Azkaban, as they had played no part in the war.
That would explain why Hermione had never noticed her when she was in Hogwarts.
After they had cleared up, Draco decided that it was safe to go home.
“Hopefully your friends will have gotten tired of waiting.” he said.
“Oh I hope they can forgive me.” Hermione said.
“For not telling them that we were... engaged. Even though we aren't really, Ginny's still going to be a little annoyed that I didn't tell her all the details about last night.” she sighed. “She's going to hate me.” It had been the only thing on her mind. She didn't mind Harry, but she did Ginny. She was hard to talk to, let alone explain.
“She won't,” Draco said, pulling Hermione into a warm hug. “She's your friend. she'll understand.”
Hermione removed herself from his embrace and smiled at him. “You give pretty nice hugs Malfoy.”
“Don't go around telling everyone that!” Draco grimaced. “I have a reputation to uphold.”
“You don't want people to know you have a warm heart?” Hermione chuckled lightly.
“Not really. No. I like it when people think that I'm still the same cold hearted Draco, the one you used to think I was.”
“What can I say Malfoy? You're growing on me!”
He let out a soft funny growl.
“Let's go.” he said.
He took Hermione's hand and they both apparated home.
“You have a lot of explanation to do Hermione Jean Granger!” Ginny said with a serious look on her face.
The next day Hermione apparated to Harry and Ginny's flat. She felt that she at least owed them an explanation. She was greeted rather unwelcoming, as they were both mad at her, and a little confused. Hermione had spent the rest of yesterday planning what to say to her friends. And how she was going to explain to them, the whole Astoria and Andrew situation.
“I know you're both mad at me,” she began as she moved unsettling in her seat. “and I don't blame you. I didn't exactly explain everything to you.”
“No you didn't!” Harry interrupted pacing back and forth his living room floor.
“There's no reason to be mad Harry, it's not like I'm actually engaged to him.” Hermione understood that they were a little confused, but Harry seemed to be angry at her.
“Oh, that just makes it all okay then, doesn't it?” Harry retorted sarcastically, still pacing.
“Why are you so bloody mad at me?” Hermione was on the verge of flipping out. She expected them, him especially, to be more understanding.
“Because Hermione,” Harry stopped pacing and stared her dead in the eyes. “When you so selfishly left, we had to deal with an angry mob of reporters, a bitchy ex–girlfriend, and a violent Ron Weasley!”
“Ron was there?” Hermione asked.
“Someone must have called him, he arrived before you left.” Ginny said, in a way that was meant to suggest that Ron had seen the kiss. But why was he being violent, Hermione asked herself, he left her!
“Ron wasn't having the fact that you were engaged to someone else, he nearly took it out on poor Andrew!” Ginny chuckled lightly.
Hermione had nearly forgotten that the red haired was still in the room.
“But I'm not engaged to him! The ring was an honest mistake! I wouldn't have worn it if I knew it gave that impression!” Hermione explained.
“Why are you still wearing it then?” Harry asked, as he pointed to Hermione's left hand.
Hermione stared at her hand. The fact that she was wearing the ring just made it harder for them to believe her explanation. She had completely forgotten that she was wearing it.
She sighed. “It's a traditional Malfoy ring. You give it to the woman you love when you've been dating for a while.”
Harry and Ginny stared back at her like she was mental. Maybe she was, she didn't know. she'd been doing so many mental things ever since she came back, throwing a birthday bash, pretending to date an ex death eater, and to top it off, probably the most mental thing she'd done now that she thinks of it, wearing the Malfoy ring.
“You've only been dating for a few weeks.” Harry pointed out. “Why'd he give you the ring?”
Hermione sighed. What was she thinking when she had accepted the ring? she just thought it was the most thoughtful thing to receive at that moment; she hadn't even bothered to question the fact that he had given it to her but not to Astoria.
“I don't know.” she mumbled before putting her head in her hands. They were blaming her for what was happening and she didn't like it. She didn't like to feel like she was the cause of the pain.
Harry sighed, “Hermione...”
Hermione felt a comforting hand on her back. Probably Ginny's, she thought.
She lifted her head to see Harry sat on the arm of the chair she was sitting on. “I'm sorry I shouldn't have been so rude.” he apologised. “I'm still getting used to the idea of you and Malfoy.”
Hermione chuckled lightly before hastily wiping away the small tears that were now forming in her eyes. “It is rather unusual.” she agreed.
“Just a bit.”
It was just like old times, Back when they were in Hogwarts, when they would all be in the Gryffindor common room, laughing about Seamus setting another cauldron on fire or something else equally hysterical. The only thing that was missing was Ron.
Hermione surely missed Ron, no doubt about that, she had missed his dumb ways of making her laugh. She was willing to take Ron back, but only as a friend. He had caused her enough pain and worries and she wasn't going to allow him to do that again. His stupidity had sent her straight to the enemy, Malfoy.
Hermione looked up when she heard the door open. Draco walked in and threw himself at the end of the couch she was sitting on. She lowered the TV volume and turned round to face him.
”Tired?” she asked.
“Very.” he said. “But never mind me, how was your day?”
“Well...” she began. “I went to visit Harry and Ginny, to explain everything to them.” Draco nodded to show he was listening. “It took a while but I think I'm forgiven for not telling Ginny about the dinner party. What about you?”
“Your day was certainly better than mine. I'm so bloody tired.” He groaned and rubbed his forehead.
“Aw poor you. What happened?” Hermione cooed.
“This morning, I found my desk covered with paperwork. I had so much to do. And get this, I haven't eaten all day!”
“What? You must be starving!” Twelve hours without eating? Was he mad?
“I am.” he pointed out.
“It's a good thing I haven't had dinner then! I was just about to make some Mac and cheese. Want some?” she asked as she got up to go to the kitchen.
“Yes please.” He eagerly nodded.
Thank God Granger was here! Astoria would never make him dinner, no matter how much he complained he was hungry. After Draco had showered and gotten dressed, he entered the dining room to find it empty. Wasn't she done cooking already? He went to the kitchen, the stove was empty but the room smelled of Mac and cheese.
He then walked back to the living room to find Hermione balancing a hot plate on her left hand and a fork on another, whilst sitting cross legged on the huge sofa facing the large TV. She noticed him enter the room and smiled.
“Malfoy, your dinner's here.” she said pointing to the coffee table.
“We're eating... here?” he asked trying not to sound rude.
“I am.” she muttered. “You can eat in the dining room.” she had clearly misunderstood his tone.
“No I'm just a bit surprised, that's all. I've never eaten in front of the tele.” he said, taking a seat next to her.
“How am I not surprised?” she rolled her eyes.
He grabbed his plate and dug his fork into his food. “Astoria would never approve.” he mumbled.
“Good thing she's not here then, eh?” Hermione said with a mischievous gleam in her eye.
Hermione looked at the woman sitting next to him. There was something different about her. No, not her hair. It wasn't physical. It was that Draco didn't find himself uncomfortable in her presence as much as he would have thought. He had expected living with her to be a horrible experience, where she would bring her boring qualities along and bore him to death with countless facts about nothing. But she was actually acting normal, well as normal as she could get.
“So what are we watching?” Draco asked, minutes later.
“Romeo and Juliet.” Hermione answered, not taking her eyes off the screen.
Hermione looked up.”Yeah.” she answered. “I didn't know you knew about Shakespeare.”
“Well I know a little about his works.”
“Okay then! What's your favourite play?” she wanted to test his knowledge and find out if he really did know anything about Shakespeare.
He gave the question much thought before saying, “Macbeth.”
“And why is that?”
“It deals with a lot of emotions that we deal with today.”
“So like the crazy selfish de–ranged wife?” she jokingly asked.
“Oh c’mon Hermione. You're not that bad.” he said, causing Hermione to throw a pillow at him.
“That was mean.” she pouted.
He shrugged his shoulders. “Maybe.”
For the next few days, Hermione stayed home, in order to avoid the reporters, who sadly were still interested in finding out a bit more about the new golden couple who took the wizarding world by surprise. They had even been number one in ‘Witch Weekly’s Top Ten Hottest Couples Of The Year’; Hermione could easily revise what the article had said.
“Even though the relationship had yet to hit a month, we can’t help but envy. Draco Malfoy, with his dashing good looks and charms alone could sway any woman but add in a Gringotts account filled with millions and not to mention the fact that he runs the most successful company in the wizarding world, Malfoy Inc. He’s a dream. We certainly can’t blame Hermione Granger for falling for him, and he, for her. She’s quite the fashion icon ever since she came back, beautiful and sophisticated.
The couple is hardly ever pictured together but it is rumored that they are engaged! Too soon? Maybe not! Word is that Hermione Granger has moved in with her boyfriend of less than a week, so it seems that the couple may just be more in love than we think. They certainly are the ultimate unusual couple to be.”
Ginny had been angry that they had taken their spot at number one, she had tried to be serious about it but she had only made Hermione laugh. Only she and Luna had visited Hermione when she had moved in. Harry had been too busy at the Ministry to come. He’d apologised and said he would come soon but Hermione highly doubted that, she knew he was avoiding coming as he would feel uncomfortable being in a Malfoy house again.
It was a sunny day, the sky was blue, and the air was crisp as the sun shone brightly above the penthouse. Hermione was lying on a recliner chair in the balcony, with a random book about witches and goblins in her hand. She was wearing shorts and a small vest, and had a large floppy hat on to block her from the scorching heat. She had been lying like that for over an hour and she was practically bored to death. All her friends were either enjoying their day out in the sun or at a swimming pool somewhere, but not Hermione, she was restrained to leave the penthouse flat by Draco. Apparently the press were now everywhere, which meant that she wasn’t allowed to go anywhere without Draco or someone equally strong. He had even hired a bodyguard for her, since he didn’t trust her and he also knew she wouldn’t take kindly to being under house arrest.
Just lying under the sun was making Hermione sick; she wanted to take advantage of the hot day. And so decided to visit Diagon Alley, and explore. She called her bodyguard, Bryant. And he arrived with a pop in less than a second. Bryant was an extremely tall handsome wizard, with a tan complexion and unruly black hair. He reminded Hermione a bit of Andrew.
“I’m going to Diagon Alley.” Hermione informed Bryant, whose name ironically was Celtic for strong. “I’m not going to be a prisoner in my own home.”
Bryant nodded and took a seat on one of the large plush sofas. Hermione quickly went and got changed. She put on a different top that covered her chest, and different pair of denim shorts.
They used the floo network to get to The Leaky Cauldron in Diagon Alley. As Hermione stepped out of the Leaky Cauldron into Diagon Alley she was hit with a ray of intense heat from the sun, it’s a good thing she was still wearing her abnormally large floppy hat and sunglasses, to block her from the heat. Hermione walked through Diagon Alley unrecognizable, which was weird considering her large hat and equally large bodyguard that was following her around, could easily stand out. Diagon Alley was a crowded madhouse, as usual, making it hard for her to maneuver around amongst the crowd. At least it was finally back to normal after the war.
She visited Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes and had a long chat with George. She remembered George being this jolly annoying prankster, but ever since he lost his twin, things hadn’t exactly been the same for him. But today he looked… almost happy.
“Hermione!” he yelled when the she had entered the shop.
“Hey George!” Hermione smiled as she gave him a humble hug, suddenly glad that she had asked Bryant to wait outside for her.
“What are you doing here?” he asked, still grinning.
“What, I can’t visit my favourite Weasley?”
“You better not let Ginny hear that.” He joked, and Hermione laughed.
“I just thought I’d pop in and see how everything is.” she said.
“Well everything’s fine.”
“I’m glad.” It must be Angelina that’s making him so happy, Hermione thought.
After Hermione left George, she was hungry. Walking down towards the various cafes she noticed Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlor was open, she heard it closed down during her 6th year after Florean Fortescue had been kidnapped by death–eaters, but it seemed to be back in business. Hermione ordered a nice big ice–cream sundae to cure her hunger. Bryant declined the offer when Hermione asked if he wanted any. He must have been trained at some special bodyguard school where it was a crime to eat.
They walked out of the shop and she decided to take a look inside Magical Menagerie to look at all the animals. In the window they had a litter of kittens that had various shades of purple fur. She spent quite a few moments playing with the kittens and she probably spent a good hour or so in there playing with and looking at all the different magical animals.
She then visited Flourish and Blotts, her favourite bookshop. She just couldn’t go to Diagon Alley and not visit Flourish and Blotts. She spent almost an hour browsing through the large bookcases that made up the shop, and Bryant did not complain once. He rather enjoyed the bookshop as he too, was browsing. She was surprised to find some muggle books but nonetheless Hermione bought dozens of book, probably more than Draco would allow, but she didn’t really care at that moment. She sat in a corner at the back of the bookshop where many others were sat reading their books. Bryant sat as well and began to read a book he had picked. She didn’t know he was the reading type.
Hermione was halfway through the small book when a tall man wearing sunglasses and a baseball cap came and sat next to her. She closed the book and turned to face the mysterious man who was sitting extremely close to her.
“Erm, excuse me, but can you move.. a bit.” she stammered. “You’re sitting a bit too close to me.”
The man moved further away. “Sorry!”
Hermione’s head cocked up. “Andrew?”
He removed his sunglasses. “Sorry Hermione, I didn’t mean to make you uncomfortable.” Andrew said quietly.
“What are you doing here?”
“I was just getting a book when I saw you.” He smiled. God, his smile was truly something.
“How have you not been recognised? Your disguise isn’t really… good.” she told him.
“What disguise? Oh the baseball cap? I’m only wearing it because of the heat.” He explained. “As I’m sure is also the reason for yours.” He was trying not to laugh.
Hermione hit him lightly with her book. “This is my favourite hat, don’t be rude!”
“Really?” he chuckled.
“Shut up.” she folded her arm firmly across her chest, annoyed.
“So what are you doing here alone?”
“I’m not alone.” she said, pointing to where Bryant sat intrigued with a book in his hand.
“Malfoy hired a bodyguard?” he asked with an eyebrow raised.
She nodded. “To protect me from the press, apparently.”
“That’s sweet.” He whispered, getting a bit closer.
“Well, that’s my boyfriend for you.” she drawled sarcastically. “He’s full of sweetness.”
Andrew chuckled. “I had no Idea that you two were dating in the first place.” He said.
“It was sort of… sudden.” she said.
Andrew nodded, satisfied with the answer.
“I had no idea that you knew Astoria.” she turned the attention back to him.
He leaned back in his seat, looking uncomfortable. “We used to date, when we she was living in Italy.”
“She lived in Italy?”
“Yeah, but only for a few weeks.” he said, moving closer.
“Draco didn’t tell me that.”
“This was before they started to date, I think. It was three years ago.” He said.
“Oh.” Hermione said. Things were making sense now.
“Are you still mad that I stood you up?” he asked a few seconds later.
“To have stood me up, you’d have to not have been there. But you were… just with someone else.” she said quite matter–of–factly.
“I’m sorry.” he said.
Their faces were inches away. She quickly stood up. “Er, I have–I have to go now.” she stammered ignoring the confused look on his face. “It was nice seeing you again.”
Bryant had lost stopped reading his book when Hermione stood up. He was surprised to see Andrew there; he hadn’t even noticed him arrive. Hermione walked out the bookshop and towards the Leaky Cauldron, where she flooed home.
When Bryant left, Hermione was finally able to relax. It took her a minute to recollect what had nearly happened with Andrew. She had been inches away from his face, any closer and they would have been kissing. Thank God she reacted quickly. Wait – what if a reporter had been following them around the whole time? What if the reporter had got a picture of her with Andrew!? They would make it look like something it wasn’t, or rather something that it was.
Hermione woke up to a pillow being thrown to her face.
“Ow.” she murmured, rubbing her eyes.
“It’s eight o’clock at night.” Draco said. “Why are you already in bed?” Hermione sat upright and took in the view in front of her. Draco was shirtless. Hermione had to force herself not to look at him, but it was no use. His defined abs and toned arms glistened in the dim light.
“Why are you shirtless?” she asked him, not even trying to hide the shock in her voice.
“Like the view Granger?” he smirked. Hermione rolled her eyes and got up from her bed. She had gone to bed soon after she returned from Diagon Alley. She was falling asleep whilst reading a book, so she decided she might as well go to bed.
“I just took a shower, it’s roasting out there.” Draco said, answering her earlier question.
“Oh right.” Lucky for Hermione, her room was air conditioned, so she couldn’t feel the heat from outside.
“Have you been in bed all day?” Draco asked.
“No. I went to Diagon Alley.” Hermione said as she began making her bed.
“I had Bryant, although I see no need for him.” she said.
“He kept you safe. Isn’t that enough?”
“I was perfectly safe without him.” she retorted. “No one recognised me, his presence just made us stand out.”
“I think it’s best if you stick with him.” he said.
“Whatever.” Hermione muttered under her breath.
“I made dinner.” he said before leaving the room.
This, I’ve got to see, Hermione thought as she rushed to the dining room.
The dining table had a small candle in the middle, and as Hermione walked closer, she could smell the dinner. It was salmon, no shock there; he seemed to have a thing for seafood. Overall the dining room atmosphere looked welcoming. Hermione took a seat just as Draco walked into the room.
“You made salmon?” she asked him as he sat down opposite her. At least he had put on a shirt.
“Yeah.” he nodded. “I told you I can cook.”
“But are you a good cook? That is the question.” she told him.
“Why don’t you check?” he handed her a fork. With careful delicacy, Hermione cut a bit of the salmon and ate it. It tasted delightful. She didn’t need to tell him that though, as Draco noticed her expression.
“It’s good, isn’t it?” he asked.
Hermione nodded. “I can physically see your ego growing by the second.” she said.
He chuckled. “A little ego is needed from time to time.”
Hermione ignored him. “I must admit, this is really delicious.”
“I know how hard that was for you to admit.” he said.
“Fuck you.” she muttered.
He laughed. He was doing a lot of that lately.
“So what did you do in Diagon Alley then?” Draco asked.
“I visited George, I visited the pet shop and I spent hours at the bookshop–”
“Shocking.” He interrupted her.
“As I was saying…” she sent him daggers. “I was at the bookshop, when I ran into Andrew."
“Andrew?” Draco looked up from his food. “The Seeker?”
“What were you doing with him?” he asked, clearly interested in what she had to say.
“I told you, I ran into him.”
He just nodded and continued eating. Hermione figured that if some reporter had indeed been following her around all day, then at least Draco would know that she was with Andrew before it’s all over The Daily Prophet tomorrow that she’s cheating on him.
“I didn’t know that Astoria lived in Italy.” she told him.
Draco dropped his fork and looked at her. “Who told you that?” he asked a hint of anger in his voice.
“That stupid fucker thinks he knows everything doesn’t he?” he nearly shouted.
“There’s no need to be rude!” Hermione argued.
He stared at her and then sighed before leaning back in his seat.
“Why the sudden change of mood?” she asked in a concerned tone.
“I’m sorry, it’s just– it’s complicated.” he breathed.
“Do you want to talk about it?” she subtly asked.
He sighed a bit. He was just about to reveal something very big to someone he had been living with for not even a month. Someone who used to be his enemy, who he had once detested, the girl who he had somehow grown fond of.
“Astoria used to live in Italy before while we were dating.” he began. “She only lived there for eight weeks, long enough for her to meet someone. When she returned, me and her continued dating. It got pretty serious. A few weeks later I found out that Astoria was pregnant.” Hermione gasped. “I was excited. Probably more than I should have been. But I was going to be a father. We were young, sure, but I had the money to feed my family. I was so certain that I would marry Astoria and live with her forever, but obviously I was wrong.” He paused before continuing on. “Two months later, I found out from her sister, that the baby might not be mine, that it could be some Italian bloke’s.”
“Andrew?” Hermione gasped, wide–eyed.
Draco nodded. “I confronted her about it but she denied it, saying that she never dated an Italian bloke.”
“Did she lose the baby?” Hermione asked. No one told her that Astoria had a baby, so maybe she had lost it.
“No, that’s what everyone thinks but it was all a lie. Eventually Astoria broke down and explained to me everything. She pretended to be pregnant because she didn’t want Russo to come looking for her. If he thought that she was pregnant, then he would spend his whole live avoiding her. And she could be with me.”
Hermione had stopped eating and was staring at the person sitting in front of her. “I’m so sorry.” she said. “I had no idea that Andrew had such a big part in this.”
“It’s all Astoria actually. She cheated, she lied, and quite frankly she was a terrible cook.” He added jokingly.
Hermione giggled. “Unlike you, you’re brilliant.”
“The best in the house.” he smirked.
“Don’t get too happy.” Hermione busted his ego.
Hermione smiled at herself for having steered the conversation away from the awful topic. She had no idea that their relationship had gone further than that. No wonder he didn’t like Andrew. He may act like a tough sculpture, strong and unbreakable, but in reality, he was crumbling to pieces. All he needed was a friend’s affection. Hermione was glad that she was able to provide this.
Disclaimer: I do not own Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare wrote it and Franco Zeffirelli directed the screenplay version (but in this case, I'm talking about the Quentin Tarantino version). I also do not own Harry Potter or the brilliant characters you recognise! The brilliant JK Rowling does!
lets not talk about why I've only just put updated. Apologies, by the way.
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