Hermione sat at her vanity readying herself for the start of the term trip to Hogsmeade with Ron and Harry. She was seventeen now, a few weeks into her 7th and final year at Hogwarts. The year would hold new adventures, Hermione knew it would. Whether it be dangerous ones that Ron and Harry dragged her into, or simple ones that came along with being named Head Girl. Yes, she was Head Girl, a fact that she proudly displayed at every chance she got, in a Percy like way. The name of Head Girl also came along with a seperate dormitory, with it's own common room and bathroom. It seperated her from the rest of her Gryffindors. Yet a new found feeling of independence had tagged along with the new Head Girl suite. She was well on her way to becoming the healer she always wanted to be, taking pre-healing classes as well as medical potions classes. She embraced the challenges this year would bring, happily. But despite the great things in her life, one solitary thing remained out of her reach. Ron. She'd loved him for a while now, but he was too clueless to notice. A fact that Hermione simply adored about him. She loved everything about him, from the overprotective attitude he'd displayed when she almost dated Victor Krum in their fourth year to their petty arguments that seemed to eminate from their mouths whenever they disagreed with one another. With a wave of her wand, her hair began to twist and dance about as if being blowed by the wind until it was completely dry and had curled itself. She brushed make up on her face and walked over to her armoire to chose an outfit to wear. After staring at several different options, she decided on a knee length red skirt that flowed when she walked, and a white v-necked sweater. She walked over to her bed, laying out her choice. She slipped off the silk robe she was wearing and began to step into the skirt. A sound came from the corner of the room that distracted her. A sound like someone bumping into the desk that sat just to the right of the corner. She looked, but no one was there. Brushing it off as her imagination, she finished dressing and put the thought out of her mind. Thinking of Ron, she spritzed some perfume on, hoping he would notice later. It made her sad to know that he wouldn't notice, or that he wouldn't care. Sitting on her bed she noticed the photograph of her and Ron that Harry had taken when they'd stayed with Ron's family over the summer. They were sitting in his garden, covered in dirt and looking thouroughly exhausted from the de-gnoming they had finished moments earlier. But they still smiled and waved happily from the stone they were sitting on. She fingered the sides of the metal frame the picture resided in. She wished so deeply that she could tell Ron how she felt. But an uneasy feeling came over Hermione when she felt eyes on her back. The noise came again, this time it was louder. She turned to look over at the corner, but still no one was there. Quickly, she put on her shoes and left, still not able to shake the feeling that someone had been watching her get dressed. Walking through the hall, she felt a little safer knowing she would be with Ron in a few moments. She turned from the fifth floor corridor that was home to her dormitory and begin to walk to the Great Hall. There were footsteps behind her, but when she looked, no one was there. People had stopped using this particular corridor because it was where the Defense Against the Dark Arts class room was. Not that there was anything wrong with that class, but the new teacher, Professor Feehily had a love for cats. And his classroom smelled strongly of tuna and cat dung. A smell that often wafted out into the hall, causing students to find other means of getting from one place to another. But this remained the shortest way from Hermione's dorm room to the Great Hall, and she still felt shakey about the strange sounds that came from the corner in her room. And it appeared whoever was watching her in her room had followed her. She began to walk more quickly. Her heels clicked wildly on the floor, but she didn't care. Soon enough, she was in the Great Hall and Ron and Harry waved her over to their seats. "What took you so long, Hermione?" Harry inquired when she finally joined them. "You okay? You look rather pale." Ron asked. "I don't know, really. They were strange sounds coming from the corner in my room, and I kept feeling as if there were someone else there. But when I looked, there was no one. And I heard footsteps following me. It was really strange." "Oh, well you're safe now. No need to worry," Ron said, patting her on the back in a comforting manor which brought a smile to her face. "It was probably just Crookshanks hiding under your desk," Harry stated. "Yeah, you're probably right. But that doesn't explain the footsteps." "Maybe you were still freaked out by Crookshanks, so you just imagined them," Ron said. "Oh great, so now I'm crazy," Hermione sighed. "I didn't mean it like that." "I know, I guess I'm still a little shaken up." "Ready to leave for Hogsmeade yet?" "Yeah," Hermione mumbled, feeling stupid for getting so worked up over Crookshanks hiding under her desk. * * * A few hours later, the trio was walking around Hogsmeade looking through all the shops. They entered into Zonko's when they were interupted by a very happy Ginny. "Hello Harry," She muttered. "Hi Ginny," He aswered happily. The two had shared a kiss over the summer and were in the beginning of a new relationship. Ginny took Harry's hand and pulled him off into a corner of the store to look at something. "Look at those two, going off on their own. If Harry hurts her, I swear I'll..." Ron muttered looking somewhat angry. "Oh Ron, it's Harry, he would never hurt her. If anything, I'd be worried about Ginny hurting Harry!" Hermione joked. "Ha ha, very funny," Ron mumbled sarcastically. "Why don't we leave those two alone. Besides, you look as if you could attack Harry," She laughed. She smiled at the thought that they would have the rest of the day alone. Unfortunately for her, nothing of any importance happened, but he still enjoyed their time alone. * * * When Hermione finally made it back to her room that night, she was somewhat dissappointed at the lack of excitement in the day. She had been alone with Ron all day, yet she still didn't have to courage to just say three simple words. "I like you Ron, how difficult is that to say?" She said, sounding frustrated. She sat down at her vanity to wipe off her make up. She looked over to see the photograph of Ron and her, but what she saw shocked her. It was gone, someone had taken it. A/N: Okay, so this is the start of my new story. It starts off somewhat slow, but it speeds up soon. In the next chapter you may find out who's stalking her. ;) Please review. Oh, and I may not update for a little while, because I intend on finishing up the last two chapters of my other Ron-Hermione romance, At My Most Beautiful. Feel free to read that. It would make me insanely happy. (:
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