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“Yes Hermione, very good, just remember to keep your head up. And Draco, remember don’t try to lift Hermione as she jumps onto you, you’ll just hurt yourself, and always keep your…SEAMUS!! NO! MARSHMELLOSIS!!!” Rebecca shouted and pointed her wand to the dance studio floor. The shiny hard wood floor transformed into large fluffy marshmallow covered floor just in time as Parvati fell to the squishy ground. “Seamus! How many times must I tell you that your legs must be shoulder width apart or else you can’t support Parvati enough as she comes down from her jump? If I have to go over safety measures with you one more time so help me…”

“Wow, Seamus really made her mad this time. How many times has he dropped Parvati now?” Draco asked.

“Six.” Hermione replied. “Please don’t ever drop me Draco, I don’t fancy getting marshmallow in my hair or on my bum.”

“Don’t worry; I’m not a klutz like Finnigan over there.” Draco said. Hermione had to agree, Draco was actually very graceful when it came to dancing, well, most of the time. Hermione placed her hand gently on his forearm to get his attention.

“I’m going to go help Parvati get that sticky mess out of her clothes, a simple cleaning spell should do the trick I think.” She started to walk across the studio, which was now back to normal.

“Smarty-pants!” he called after her. She turned and smiled then stuck her tongue out at him. He pretended to cry and she laughed, turning back to Parvati.

“So,” Parvati began, “Are you and Draco a couple now or what? I see you two together everywhere.”

“No. We just…understand each other better now. We’re friends, I think. Also, we are Head Boy and Girl so we have our duties that we must attend to together, and we’re dance partners as well.” Hermione replied.

“Oh, well in case anything changes,” She leaned in real close so only Hermione could hear, “I heard he’s great in bed.” Hermione burst into hysterical laughter, bracing herself against the wall for support. Unable to control herself, she slid down the wall, laughing her head off the whole way. She wasn’t sure what she found funnier, the idea of her and Draco sleeping together, or the fact she knew Draco was a virgin and there was no way that the rumor could be true. The entire class was staring at her now, but she didn’t care.

“Was it something I said?” Parvati asked with a very confused look on her face. This only made Hermione laugh harder.

Draco looked across the room after hearing a loud burst of laughter. Letting his eyes fall on Hermione, he saw she was in a crumpled heap on the floor, tears streaming down her cheeks. He quickly strode across the room to where she was sitting and crouched down to her eye level. “Hermione? Are you feeling alright?” he asked. She nodded enthusiastically and began to stand up with his help. “Come on, let’s go get some fresh air.” Draco let her out the back door and down the path that led to the quidditch pitch. They stopped at the nearest bench and sat down. “Now what was all that about?” he asked.

“They think we…and that you’re…and we’re gonna…” she began, trying to suppress the laughter that was bubbling up inside her. She took a few deep breaths, and started over. “Everyone thinks that you and I are a couple. And there’s a rumor floating around that your great in bed.” She said.

Draco’s face lit up and he said proudly, “Really? The girls think I’m a great shag? Brilliant, I must thank whoever started that one.” Hermione punched him in the arm. “Ouch, that hurt. What did you do that for?”

“Because Draco, Parvati thinks that we are going to sleep together.” She waited for him to laugh, or say something, anything, but he didn’t. “Uh, Draco? Did you get any of what I just said?”

“Oh, sure. Um, well we can just ignore it I guess…” he smirked, “Unless you fancy a shag Miss Granger.” She blushed deep red and Draco couldn’t tell if she was angry or very embarrassed. Either way, she got up and started for the castle. “Hey! Where are you going? Class isn’t over yet.”

“For me it is. I’m going up to the Gryffindor common room. I’ll see you at dinner I suppose.” She said walking away. She needed to have a word with one of Hogwarts most infamous gossips. She could still hear Draco’s deep voice carrying on behind her.

“In all my life I never thought I’d live to see the day that Hermione Granger skips class just because she feels like it…”

~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Making her way up the staircase that led to the fat lady’s portrait, she stopped to give the password.

“Hermione dear, so nice to see you! It’s been quite some time since you’ve been to visit us.” Said the fat lady.

“Yes, well I’ve been very busy. ‘Valor’” She said. The Portrait swung open and she walked into the familiar common room. “I sort of miss this place,” she thought. “And now to find Lavender…” Hermione went up to the girls dormitories, and sitting on her bed flipping through “Witch Glamour Today” magazine was Lavender. Lavender looked up and grinned at Hermione.

“Hello Hermione, have you come to ask for beauty tips again? Or are you thinking more along the lines of snogging instructions? I imagine you wouldn’t want to embarrass yourself in front of someone as experienced as Draco Malfoy.” She said rather snidely, not taking her eyes off her magazine. Hermione had once asked Lavender to help her get ready for the Yule Ball, and Lavender was never going to let her live it down, but the bit about Draco was completely uncalled for. Hermione just let it slide, this time.

“Actually, I just wanted to know exactly what people have been saying about Draco and I. And seeing as your ears seem to find their way into other people’s conversations when they shouldn’t, I figured you would be the best person to ask.” Hermione said in an irritated voice.

“Well, Hermione, you’re a bright girl aren’t you? I would suppose that you could guess people think you and Mr.Malfoy are doing more than dancing together, and the fact that you two share living accommodations is quite convenient now isn’t it? The last I heard was that the pair of you were “just friends” and everyone knows what that means…”

“Oh please do continue.” Hermione urged.

“It means that soon enough, if not already, you two will be snogging each other in the hall when no one is looking, and soon after that, you’ll be shagging like bunnies.” Lavender said matter-of-factly.

“What!? That is absurd! Draco and I are doing no such thing, and I’m appalled tha…”

“Hermione,” Lavender cut in, “You wanted to know, and I told you. Please don’t complain to me, and no offence but I am in no mood to be a part of your pity party.”

“Humph.” Was all that came out of Hermione’s mouth after that. Folding her arms across her chest she turned to leave, but Lavender called out to her.

“Hey Hermione? You don’t still have those knickers with the little pink ponies on them do you?”

Hermione felt herself blush. “Well…see, I don’t exactly…”

“One little tidbit of advice girl to girl, it doesn’t matter who the guy is, pink pony knickers are not sexy. Here,” Lavender put her magazine down and walked over to her trunk. After a moment of rummaging through it, she found what she was looking for. “Brand new from Mademoiselle Sylvaine’s Lingerie in Diagon Alley. Tags still on and everything. I think you need them more than I do.” She said handing Hermione three pairs of very small lacy underwear.

“Lavender no, I’m not going to wear those. I don’t need new knickers, you keep them, I cant…” she protested trying to give them back, but Lavender threw her hands in the air, refusing to take them back. Giving up, Hermione sighed and stuffed them into her robe pocket. “Lavender, Draco and I aren’t sleeping together, and we have no plans to, ever.”

“Well, I believe it was you whose motto was, ‘it never hurts to be prepared.’”

“Goodbye Lavender.” Hermione sighed as she left the room. As she was exiting the common room a wave of students flooded in. Among them were Ron and Harry. She smiled and waved, but all she got in return was a glare from Ron and a weak wave from Harry. A bit disappointed, but not surprised, she made her way to her own common room. “Honey drop.” She said meekly. She walked in and saw the back of a blond head on the couch. Plopping herself down on the couch next to him (a little closer than intended) she greeted him. “Hi Draco.”

“Hey ‘Mione. Where did you run off to? I was left in dance class with no partner. I must have looked like an idiot.”

“I’m sorry. I had to see someone about a rumor I heard. Did I miss anything important in class? I should go apologize to Rebecca, I hope she isn’t mad at me…” Hermione tried to get up but Draco grabbed her arm, pulling her back down. She landed even closer this time, their shoulders and thighs touching.

“Relax, I told Rebecca you were having ‘girl trouble’ and she excused it. No harm done.” He told her.

“Oh,” she said in a surprised tone. “Well, thank you then.”

“No problem. Oh, I just remembered, we have a meeting with the prefects tomorrow. I wasn’t sure if you knew or not. Hey, what’s that?” he said, tugging at the little corner of lace that was sticking out of her pocket. Hermione looked down and tried to shove it back in, but it was too late. Draco pulled it out and held it dangling from his index finger. He smirked and raised his eyebrows. “Hermione, is there a reason why you are carrying around seductive lingerie in your pockets?”

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