A/N: We've made it to double digits! I can't thank y'all enough for reading and interacting so far! I'm glad you all are enjoying reading as much as I have enjoyed writing :)
Please note that I have plans to be making slight edits to the story (nothing crazy, just punctuation and word choices that have bugged me, etc), so it will look like there are updates - technically there are, but not new chapters necessarily. Sorry about that!
My last semester of college started last week, so the next update may be a bit slower as I try to get into the groove of my new schedule. I've already missed out on some things because I have no idea what's going on....whoopsies. I'm also in the process of starting my next fic, so I'm writing two stories at once while working and doing school and applying for big girl jobs....SOS.
Chills part two is out! It's my hockey AU two shot, so go check it out! It's a fluff and spice piece, and very light! Thank you to everyone who's loved it so far!
ALSO: I've made a Twitter so I can interact with y'all - follow me! It's december_noonx (also, follow me on TikTok if you haven't already! I don't know how to make cool videos, but I try - december_noon).
Betawork done by AlmondMilkTeaDoubleBoba and LeilahMoon.
I'm done rambling now, so without further ado... Slytherin party? Slytherin party.
A familiar shade of red that she'd only seen in passing over the last few weeks flashed in her peripheral. Feeling the other side of the sofa she was seated on dip under the weight of another person, she looked up from the book she was reading in front of the fire. "Hey, Ginny," she sighed, moving her gaze back to the words. At this point, they were all blurring together - it was near pointless to continue, but she tried anyway. "What are you doing up?"
It was late - most people were in bed, save for a small group of fourth years at the corner table trying to finish a paper. Hermione would never understand how people left such important things to the last minute. If the stress didn't kill her, she'd do herself in just from being so unorganized. When she'd been their age, everything had been finished at least two weeks in advance.
"Same as you I suppose," her friend said. Even though she sounded tired, Hermione could hear the implied joke - there was no book in her hands.
"Ha ha, very funny," she retorted, giving a wry smile and rolling her eyes. "Really though, what's up? Last time I saw you up this late was that party after the Quidditch scrimmage." Hermione slid a bookmark in, closing the book and setting it aside, choosing to forego the memory of what happened at - or more importantly, after - that party. Remembering the intensity of his eyes and the ghost of his fingers on her skin in combination with her proximity to the fire in the common room made her hot. Wrapping her hair into a messy topknot, she pushed the sleeves of her sweatshirt up.
Hermione felt bad - all of her time in the last few weeks had been dedicated to either collecting intel on a certain supposed Death Eater, or her schoolwork. It had almost been a relief to avoid Harry, not that she'd ever admit it. Having a break from his antics gave her more than ten seconds to herself, to breathe and do things her own way. She hadn't planned on avoiding him for this long - everything had just gotten away from her. Her anger had almost completely subsided by now but, if she was being truthful, it was a conversation she was avoiding. She did miss him though, and planned on talking with him - as soon as she found the time and energy.
Her friend suddenly looked uncomfortable. "I know you're not going to like this, but... I'm here because of Harry." She was twisting her fingers in her nap nervously, not meeting Hermione's eye.
"Yeah, I saw that one coming." This was just like him. "Don't worry Ginny, I'm going to talk to him." The signs of relief sunk into her friend's face, relaxing her features. "You do understand why I'm so angry with him, right? I understand why he felt he needed to pull something, but it was just so dangerous," she said, shaking her head.
"I do, Hermione," Ginny agreed. "But come on - it's Malfoy. We all know what he's capable of - he is second in your year after all - and no one trusts him. Harry really felt he was acting in self defense. He's not one to just lash out like that," she pleaded before hesitantly continuing. "I know about what you and Harry discussed a few weeks ago with trying to get into Malfoy's head, and–"
"He told you?" Hermione seethed. "We agreed to keep it between us." Her anger was bubbling again, but she needed to not direct it at Ginny.
"I know, and I'm not going to tell anyone. We both know how my brother's temper can be, but I swear on my magic that I'll keep it a secret. No one else needs to know."
Hermione looked around carefully to see if anyone had caught wind of their conversation. The three heads were still bent over their parchment, scribbling away furiously. Still, she kept her voice low.
"Alright, if you promise," she conceded. "I can't believe he would tell you." She stopped, looking at her friend. "You do know it's not you I'm mad at, right? This is just a sensitive thing, and so much could go wrong if it gets out, and–"
"Don't worry, I get it," Ginny said, holding up a placating hand to stop her babbling. "I told you this would stay between us, and it will. I think Harry was going crazy and needed someone to confide in. Ron clearly wasn't an option, you were... otherwise indisposed, and I just happened to be there." She shrugged.
"Okay," she sighed, reaching up to rub at her face tiredly. "Okay, I'll talk to him soon, I promise."
"Thank you, Hermione," Ginny said, reaching out to touch her friend's hand gently. "He's an idiot sometimes, but he was looking out for you in the best way he knows how. He just likes to try to save people, even though they usually don't need it. Merlin knows you can take care of yourself just fine. I think he forgets that if it weren't for you, he wouldn't have made it past his first year."
She smiled at the somewhat fond memories of earlier childhood, even though they weren't quite as carefree as she'd been expecting when she first saw the castle from the Black Lake. "I know, but sometimes it's hard to remember that," Hermione said. "Just... let me talk to him," she sat back against the couch, tucking her legs under her. "So, what do you know?"
"Just that you're supposed to be using Malfoy to try to appease Harry's theory that he's a Death Eater." By the way Ginny rolled her eyes, Hermione gathered that she wasn't the only one who thought Harry was reaching. And, given just how much the Weasley family resented the Malfoys, that was really saying something. "And that evidently he has some kind of an interest in you? What is that all about?" her left eyebrow raised in apprehension.
"Uh, nothing much," Hermione coughed uncomfortably, looking away. Forcing herself to bring her eyes back so she didn't look deceitful, she said, "Just that he made some snide implications the first night we did rounds together. And while I don't think he's about to go around proclaiming his undying love for me," they both snickered at the thought, "it seems like there could be some kind of underlying attraction? Maybe 'you want what you can't have' scenario? I'm not sure," she shrugged. "All I know is that it's evidently there, and I'm supposed to be using it to my advantage."
If she were being honest, she wasn't sure how she felt about that. Taking advantage of people was something she'd done as part of necessity when she'd needed to, but this felt different. Malfoy, albeit a spineless bully, showed no real signs of being roped into the inner circles of Voldemort's regime. When she'd done things like this in the past, it had been a rash decision - like the whole Rita Skeeter situation in fourth year. It had never been something so... dubious. This was scheming, plotting, taking, using.
But... what if Harry was right? His gut feelings had a tendency to be spot on - except for that one time in the Department of Mysteries - so she took the risk. Even still, she couldn't help but wonder.
Ginny spoke again, interrupting her thoughts. "That would be ironic," she cackled. "Draco Malfoy, pure-blood prince, having the hots for Hermione Granger, Muggle-born. Lucius would disown him. Narcissa would die of shame."
Coughing back a laugh, she said, "It's not funny," but she couldn't fight back her mirth entirely, and she knew Ginny had seen the shadows of a grin. "Okay, it's a little funny. But still, I don't know the first thing about any of this." Hermione's voice sounded exasperated, even to her.
"Maybe it's a good thing Harry told me. He's great in the heat of the moment, but strategy isn't his strong suit." Ginny leaned forward conspiratorially, her voice low. "I, however, grew up in a house full of six boys - I might be able to help on the scheming front," her eyes glittered excitedly with the possibilities. "What have you got so far?"
Harry didn't wait long to corner her after hearing about Ginny and Hermione's conversation.
She knew he wouldn't. Once he came to a sound conclusion, regardless of whether he had the evidence to back it up, he was going to chase it relentlessly.
He found her when she was on her way back to the common room, and dragged her into an alcove. She blamed the bloody map for that.
"We need to talk," he said, once they'd stopped stumbling over each other's feet.
"You're right. We do." Hermione crossed her arms across her chest, tapped her foot impatiently, and gave him her best glare that he usually withered under.
Much to her surprise, he held strong. "Go on," she prompted.
"I'm sorry. I know you say I need to apologize to him, but I can't promise that," he said. Throwing up his hands to brace himself upon seeing her look of indignation, he said, "Ah, ah - let me finish."
Huffing and tapping her foot faster, she eyed him as he continued speaking. "I know what I did was rash, but it was an accident. You know I'd never do something like that without someone's life being on the line. But you have to understand where I was coming from - he hit you with a spell in class that knocked you out for a whole day, Hermione. And that was in front of Snape. I worry about what he'd do if there was no supervision."
Hermione knew exactly what he'd do if the two of them were left unsupervised. Goosebumps erupted across her skin. She ignored them.
"I provoked him into it, Harry. I pushed him, I threw insults and said horrible things that no one could hear because I silenced us. Yes, he may have hit me with something, but there's a part of me that deserved it." Hermione sighed, continuing. "I forgive you. I know that what you did is because of who you are, and while I know that it was completely insane and uncalled for, it wasn't on purpose. You're not a dark wizard, Harry. Don't beat yourself up over this. I think I did that enough."
The sigh that heaved out of her best friend was one of weeks of built up tension. "Thank Merlin. I've felt like shit for weeks. Do you know how badly my Charms grade suffered because of you?"
"Shut up," she smiled as she shoved the collection of notes she'd kept for him into his chest. Then, more seriously, she said, "I'm scared to ask, but... how are you doing in your other classes?"
"And that is why you're my best friend," he laughed.
Hermione's laugh leapt out of her chest, echoing in the small alcove. "Yes, yes, I know. Anyway, Ginny talked to me about the whole Malfoy situation - don't worry, I'm over that - and I don't know why we didn't think to include her in the first place. She's a conniving little genius and we fleshed out everything so far."
She silenced the alcove before filling him in. "Malfoy came to me recently for tutoring. He said he'd fallen behind over the last few weeks," she may have forgiven him, but she shot Harry a pointed look that he avoided, "and so I agreed to help him. I don't completely buy it since he's second to me in our year, but it's an in." She shrugged.
"Well, now that Ginny's privy to what's going on and is going to help us out, I think he's got another thing coming," Harry smirked at her, almost maniacally, hair falling into his eyes. "Honestly, I almost feel bad for him. She grew up under Fred and George."
"Damn straight Potter. Damn straight."
Draco could hear the noise Slytherin common room was emitting from all the way up in his dorm.
Contrary to stereotype and popular belief, they did have one or two Muggle-borns in their house. And the Muggle-borns had brought them radios. Even the stick-up-the-arse pure-bloods had found them slightly intriguing, even though they'd never openly admit it. Draco could only tell because they hadn't immediately smashed the thing to bits.
Slytherin house had decided to throw a pre-Halloween party, because obviously it was their favorite holiday - they all had brains.
Normally, he'd be down there in the middle of it all, tossing back some Ogden's and figuring out who he'd take to bed that night.
But as it stood, it had interrupted the middle of precious time he'd spent planning and plotting involving the Mudblood - what else would he be doing at this point? He'd concocted a plan to spend more time with her, get under her skin with those completely asinine study sessions that he so obviously didn't need. He'd been caught up just fine - Blaise and Theo had brought his work to the hospital wing. Draco was smart, second in his year, so he had no trouble breezing through everything like he wasn't incapacitated.
It had worked just as he expected - he'd pulled the guilt trip card, knowing that it would have a better impact on her than a threat would, and he'd guessed right. Sometimes, Hermione Granger was so predictable, it almost hurt. Although, he couldn't very well complain, since it worked in his favor so well from time to time. He was hoping it would pay off.
Sighing and rising to his feet while loosening the knot on his tie, he decided to cut the shit and officially make an appearance. He was, after all, Draco Malfoy. His presence was somewhat... required at things like this. Fuck tradition and all, but these things had potential to be fun.
Running his fingers through his hair until he was content with how it looked, he didn't bother changing and headed down to the party.
Within seconds, Blaise and Theo spotted and ambushed him. "Draco!" Theo slurred. "You made it, buddy!"
"Fucking Merlin, don't call me buddy," he groaned, shooting a look of disgust at Theo. Turning to Blaise, he asked, "How drunk is he?"
His friend laughed. "Very, but to be fair, I'm not far behind. You, however, need to catch up." He was pushing a full bottle into his hands before he could protest. Honestly, where had that even come from?
Draco accepted the bottle and took a swig from it. He knew he was going to need it in order to deal with his idiot friends, especially since they were well on their way to being hammered.
Theo ignored this. "Aw, come on, don't be like that. We're just trying to get you to lose the stick that's always up your ass," he teased, poking Draco in the arm playfully. He was only seconds away from hexing his own bloody best friend.
"For once, I agree with him," Blaise said, sounding only just more composed than his friend. "You've been missing in action lately and, not to mention, you sound like you're desperately in need of a good shag, yeah? What happened to that witch you had on standby?" Draco winced, taking another pull to avoid the question he didn't want to answer.
"Come on," Blaise teased, prodding. "Don't pretend like you didn't. Drinking in the common room past midnight? With a hickey, and the most relaxed we've seen you in weeks? We're not complete dolts, mate." He laughed, smirking at Draco, and all he wanted to do was smack the look off the insufferable git's face. Granger, even though inadvertently mentioned, was a sore spot for him, especially right now. He was over dealing with her, but it wasn't like he could do anything about it - he was under orders. Not to mention, it felt like he was making no progress with her whatsoever, and it was nearly November.
He was running out of time.
Pushing every thought about dark cloaks, silver masks, and green light away, he rolled his eyes at his friend, bringing the bottle back to his lips. The best way to do this, he thought resolutely, was to wash it all away with alcohol and a different witch. It wouldn't make it disappear, but he could at least pretend he wasn't doomed for a little while.
He followed his friends to the sofa, giving a pair of fourth years the long-perfected Malfoy glare so they scattered. Plopping down next to Theo and sinking back, he sighed. Blaise and Theo had concocted a game where they would pick out a witch, rate her, and then whoever had the same number had to drink. The two of them always picked the exact same number so they could take a drink every time.
To them, it was more so about getting drunk fast than it was ogling the women, but they were still fucking morons.
This time, however, Draco joined in more than willingly, simply wanting to numb everything - yeah, it was an easy out, but he needed it. Normally, he just brushed them off and observed. If they thought something of it, they didn't say anything. For this, he was thankful. Sometimes, and only sometimes, did his friends have a semblance of tact.
Their antics continued, watching the charmed lights flicker and people dance indecently under them. Draco felt like an irresponsible teenager, something he had never truly been able to soak in. Being a Malfoy was more responsibility than he'd ever truly asked for, and now with Dark Magic and Dark Responsibilities at play, he was completely fucking drowning.
He'd always had to put on some kind of a show.
The confident playboy wizard for the other Hogwarts students. The perfect, pure-blood Malfoy heir for his parents. The Slytherin prince for the rest of his house. Oh, and he couldn't forget the loyal Death Eater for the Dark Lord.
The twisted brand that took up precious space on his otherwise undiluted skin made that one abundantly clear. What was the oath he'd taken? Now and forevermore? Yeah, that wasn't at all foreboding and intimidating.
Commitment had never been his thing - at least that's what he'd told every witch that had ever tried to lock him down with a betrothal contract. How Draco had gotten talked into this was entirely beyond him. Somehow, though, he had the feeling this wasn't all it was cracked up to be. It was too late now though, he was in it for life at this point.
Highest honor? Yeah, right. This was one instance where he decided, albeit too late, that he didn't have any desire to follow in his father's footsteps.
Draco never found himself able to catch a break. Although, at this point, he couldn't exactly be surprised. His whole life had been spent learning arbitrary rules and playing a part for someone else - to the point where he barely knew who he was anymore. It was all too easy for whoever that was to get lost in the endless shuffle of personas he was trying to keep up with.
Honestly, it was only a matter of time until he fucked up beyond repair. He only hoped that it wouldn't be himself on the line whenever that happened.
Draco quickly snapped back to the present from the movement Blaise and Theo created as the two slumped back. They were still chatting languidly while Draco propped his face into his hand, leaning into the arm of the couch. Still sulking, he took another pull of the amber liquid.
Firewhisky always burned going down, and while it normally irked him, he found he didn't mind on this particular night. It served as a reminder that nothing worth having ever came without pain and suffering. It was what he fucking deserved.
Youngest Death Eater to ever take the Mark. Lucius must be so proud.
Yeah, fuck that. Fuck his father for watching, and fuck himself for going through with it.
Nothing in his life, aside from his mother, had provided any light. Sure, he had Blaise and Theo, but that was temporary. Granger was fun to mess with, but she was only a means to an end.
He had no way out.
Yeah. Sure. He deserved it. But what could he do? He had no options here, there, or anywhere, and unless he wanted his mother to wind up fucking dead–
No. Absolutely not an option.
The world, like most things in his life, was dark and spinning. Everything was warm and fuzzy, and for once, for fucking once, he was numb.
This, this, was what he'd been craving without truly realizing it. What'd he'd been chasing when he made the insane decision to fuck Granger that turned out to haunt him like nothing he'd ever experienced. When he woke up every day and made the conscious decision not to say fuck it all and fuck off into the void.
Draco had heard time and time again that good things come to those who wait, but he was so bloody sick and tired of waiting. Everything he did these days seemed to depend completely and entirely on the decisions of others. And, if there was one thing he couldn't fucking stand, it was not being in control. He hated having to let others call the shots, having to divert his attention and pretend to care about what other people did, especially when his life hung so precariously in the balance. When would it be his turn to do things his own way?
Finishing off the bottle, and knowing he'd hate himself in the morning, he slammed it onto the side table and stood up on shaky legs. Blaise and Theo were nodding off in the midst of the chaos, Theo's head lolled on his friend's shoulder. Typical.
Mind made up, Draco was going to cleanse his palette. He stumbled slightly to the makeshift dance floor, vowing to find someone to fuck. Someone he picked. Someone he wanted in bed with him, at least for the night.
It wasn't hard. A girl he didn't recognize made her way in front of him, and they found themselves in a broken sort of rhythm. He felt her out for a few minutes, waiting until– "You wanna go upstairs?" Lucky him, he hadn't even had to ask.
A lopsided smirk grew on his face. "Follow me."
His room was dark, and it soothed his thought process. He didn't want to think about what he was doing - rather, he couldn't think about it. He was so drunk, so fucked up, he couldn't figure out how he was going to get things working and in order...fuck, he needed this. Granger had him so worked up lately, Blaise and Theo were right - this would be good for him. Merlin, she was just so fucking irritating, he fumed.
The bloody witch never knew when to stop, when to concede. She always had to push back, to fight him, to have the last word, and it fucking irritated him. But, fuck, he couldn't deny that their arguments sparked something dangerous in him.
He felt soft fingers on his shirt and lush lips on his neck. Draco's eyes fell shut, leaning into the sensation as his irritation ebbed. His fingers moved up to thread into her hair. Her head was a tad higher than he would have expected—was she tall, or was he short?
Draco didn't have time to ponder on the thought since his shirt was suddenly getting pushed from his shoulders. Light kisses were being dropped down his chest, moving down his stomach and pausing at the button of his trousers.
Fuck, she was bold. He assumed she would be shy and figured she'd need a little push. "Please," he said. He heard the tiny sound the button made as it unsnapped, and before he knew it her lips were wrapped around him as he lay on the bed.
Fuck, this was good, really good. He didn't know how he was hard since he'd had more than enough to drink, but he wasn't going to complain. He'd do anything if it meant getting Granger out of his head.
Granger. Fuck, there she was again. The only time he had ever been able to tolerate her was when she was under him, and he was sheathed in her. Fuck, she'd felt immaculate; it shouldn't have been legal.
No. Get her out.
He suddenly flipped the girl, inhaling her squeal of surprise as he kissed her hard and quickly before he moved down for a taste.
She didn't taste as good as– fucking fuck. Not again.
Maybe if he–
Pushing inside, they both groaned. Tight, hot - exactly what he needed. He surrendered to the feel of her.
It didn't feel quite like last time - something about her was different. He couldn't tell what it was - maybe because they were fucking in an actual bed this time? No, he didn't think that was it. He'd keep thinking and see if he couldn't put his finger on it.
Her moans were too loud - maybe that was it? He remembered that he'd quite liked the way she whimpered and pleaded with him before, why did she change it? It irked him.
No, that wasn't it. Well, it was, but it wasn't all. Her hair was all different too - he thought she may have used some kind of a potion or charm on it to make it smoother, sleeker - he didn't like it. The messy, thick curls made it so easy to thread his fingers through and grab, pull back. Now, they were slipping and sliding right through the silky threads. He couldn't keep his grip on it. He decided he didn't like that either.
"Oh, fuck, Draco–" see, that was another thing. In the last five and a half years, he couldn't once recall a time where she'd said his first name. It sounded strange when it fell from her lips, but the more he rolled it around in his head, the more he liked it. He decided he liked the way her voice wrapped around the sound, made it sound so pretty. Draco buried his face in her head and groaned.
Her smell was different too. He didn't know what she normally smelled like - well, he did, even if he couldn't quite pinpoint it - but it wasn't this. He shook his head a little, trying to rid himself of his bout of temporary insanity. Draco might be drunk, but he wasn't going to stop fucking a girl in the middle of sex just because she wore a different perfume.
He finally decided he didn't care. If she had presented herself to him on a silver platter, he wasn't the type to decline. Draco would accept whatever her reasoning was for coming back to him and do what he did best.
She was close, he could tell. Trailing his fingers down her spine, moving them around the curve of her hip and down to her clit, he
made gentle circles that were enough to send her flying. She cried out as she came and he followed close behind.
Flipping from her position on her hands and knees to her back, he collapsed next to her, trying to catch his breath. As their breathing mutually slowed and his mind cleared, she propped herself up onto one elbow to look at him. "That was great. We need to do that again sometime." Her lips curled up into a smirk, and Draco stared at her dumbstruck.
Coming back to himself, he finally realized he had no idea who he'd just fucked. In the dim light, he looked into blue eyes framed by thick lashes, and noticed a halo of black hair cascading down on the pillow. In no way did this girl resemble the one he'd been seeing in his mind's eye this whole time.
Gasping lowly and sharply moving away from her, he nearly tripped over his own feet as he tried to remember where his clothes had gone. The room - and his head - was still spinning, which didn't help his case, but he was desperate to get away from her.
"Draco?" she asked, propping herself up onto her elbows. "What's wrong?"
"Get out!" he said, pulling his boxers on as he stumbled across the room, grabbing for a sobering potion. Think, he needed to think. He briefly registered the sound of an indignant huff and a slamming door, but he didn't care. Draco knocked it back, wincing at the bitter taste of it, but he knew it was what he deserved.
What the fuck was wrong with him? What the hell was that?
Draco's hands ran through his hair, tugging at the ends. Too many things were happening inside his head at the same time he realized that not enough was happening.
Too many thoughts were flitting across his brain. It was like he was flipping through the pages of a book from cover to cover in two seconds - it was so much that he couldn't process a single word, even though he saw all of them.
Of fucking course that wasn't her, she wouldn't be caught dead at any party, much less a fucking Slytherin one. Why would it be her? It had been made abundantly clear that their one lapse was just that - a mistake, a one-time thing, never again to be repeated or spoken of.
So why the actual fuck was she invading his brain like this? And more importantly, how the fuck?
His head snapped up, eyes widening. Of course, he thought, Granger must have slipped him some kind of a lust potion. It wouldn't be a love potion, no, that would be too obvious. She wouldn't want him following her through the castle like a lovesick puppy. How would she explain that one to the dimwitted duo?
Although the use of a love potion did strike his fancy for if she refused to accompany him to the Manor later down the line. Maybe he could modify the dosage so it wouldn't be as noticeable or as drastic. He filed that away for later - when he could properly debate with himself about whether it would count as cheating.
Draco was trying to pinpoint when exactly she might have slipped him a potion when he realized that he couldn't really process any of this right now. Though the sobering potion had helped, he still felt like shit and he couldn't focus like he needed to through the exhaustion and lingering aftereffects of the Firewhisky.
Like a coward, he'd deal with this in the morning.
In a last ditch effort, he pulled up his constellations and did his best to bury her soundly within them before sleep swallowed him
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