“Malfoy,” Hermione softly called out, both embarrassed and disgusted having to say his name. “We’re doing the rounds again.”

The boy’s facial expression remained frozen but Draco remembers feeling a slightly misplaced hurt. Or was it in the present? Sometimes, remembering himself as a boy filled with prejudices seemed untrue. Had he really been such a prick?

“Are you listening?” She snapped her fingers in his face, provoking him to bat an eye and say a few degrading words but nothing.

He hadn’t said much to her since they began patrolling together. He’d been less of the typical Malfoy and just a teensy-weensy bit amiable. Quiet did him well.

“Where to today?” He asked in a low whispery voice.

Hermione’s ears perked, “what was that?”

He turned to her for a quick second and strutted off in a random direction.

“Not there,” she instinctively reached out and grabbed him by the wrist, “to the Library.”

She didn’t think twice about her action and still didn’t question it as she dragged him off. He wanted to pry her mudblood hands off his expensive suit his mom bought him but he quite liked watching her from behind. She had a sort of fierce presence, her mane of hair roaring like a lion, ordering him to follow. Follow he did for the rest of his life.

“Fudge off,” Draco finally pulled away, “I can walk on my own.”

Her mouth fell open, “oh, that’s right.”

His quiet deceived her for a moment.

His quiet now too was deceiving. Hermione stared back at an older Draco Malfoy, bewildered by his presence and angry with the conversation she’d eavesdropped on.

Technically, since it was about her, she felt she had the right… but did she?

“What do you mean you love me?”

The door to the hospital room opened and a good familiar face came grinning in.

“I have cards,” he flashed a deck but paused with his arm midair when everyone looked at him in surprise. “U-uh… Did I do something wrong?”

“Oh, Ron,” Ginny got up from her seat and dragged her brother out the room.

“W-wait!” Hermione shouted after them.

Her feet took her where she most wanted to be, always.

“They used to run to me,” Draco watched on as his Hermione threw her arms lovingly around another man. He watched as she denied him what he wanted most in the world.

Harry clasped a hand on his shoulder, “I can’t say it’ll all be fine but hang in there.”

“So, the Library then,” fifteen-year-old Draco swung the library doors open.

Whispering and clattering could be heard as students breaking curfew clambered to hide.

“Why is it always on our shifts?” Hermione ducked under Draco’s widespread arms to get in.

He flinched and his face flushed for a millisecond as he thought, why?

Hermione was already punishing students when he his cool returned. She was buzzing through in-between shelf after shelf while he waited for any runaways.

He enjoyed this time. It gave him a satisfying feeling of power and control. Some days, he thought about ruling the world with a tight fist and maybe, he’d go ahead and employ Granger. Maybe. She’d do well like she always does. He flinched again. Why’d he just think that last part?

He swallowed it back and returned to his duties.

“Gotta get outta here!” A student shouted, dashing towards Draco.

“Halt!” Draco said jokingly. Any other day and he’d let this Slytherin boy go but a young Hufflepuff boy came rushing out too. Both were first years. “Ten points from each of you, Rathbone and Grabeel*.”

Hermione came rushing out, eyes on fire.

“That the last of them?”

Draco gave a shrug and waved the kids away.

“Always on our shifts,” Hermione stalked back between two shelves as she dismissed those she’d caught.

Overall, then taken away 65 points just in the library. Hermione had taken five points from those she’d caught, nine of them.

Hermione was jotting down the student names and points when Draco turned a corner unexpectedly.

“Where are you off to?” She jogged after him.

She’d forgotten how long his strides were. The first time she noticed, she’d been in awe at how tall he’d gotten in five years. Things had changed for him, physically at least. Mentally and emotionally, he was still a total snot-nosed brat.

“What was that?”

Her eyes grew wide, had she said that aloud?

“W-where are you off to?”

“I thought we’d take a long way up. Might find some stragglers.”

She sighed as he turned back around, continuing on the long path. He’d never initiated, she thought. This was not the usual and even though she should wonder, she didn’t.

“Parkinson?” Draco’s voice interrupted her again.


“Draco!” A pug-nosed girl giggled.

“What are you doing out here?”

“I thought I’d come see you.”

Hermione was being completely ignored which she thought was a good thing. She much rather be invisible than start a brawl in the middle of the hallway with Pansy Parkinson.

“Who—oh, her, let’s leave her to do all the work, Draco.”

She half expected Malfoy to agree but wished he wouldn’t because she liked having a plan, her chasing and him catching the students off guard. It always amused her how easily the younger students cowered before the Draco Malfoy. He was like a dragon to them, fearsome and untameable.

“Go back or I’ll seriously take points from you.”

Both girls looked at him in awe.

“B-but Draco.”

He glared Pansy down.

Hermione wondered, did Malfoy like being a Prefect?

After a few minutes, Pansy retreated having been threatened to lose fifty personal points and having one officially taken. She hissed at Hermione as she passed by but that was all.

Draco didn’t wait. He continued his patrol and tried his best to ignore the strangely sweet smell continuously wafting his way. He liked it but he wasn’t sure if he should.

Ron once told Draco after the war, the sweet smell came from Hermione's shampoo.

author's note.

Sorry for the delay. Two weeks! But here it is. The fifth chapter should be right on schedule next week as it's a bit like part two of this chapter. We'll be getting more fifth-year action. :D

*Also, Rathbone and Grabeel are actors—lol—born in 1984.

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