To Find You Again
It felt so good, so right, the hazy thought filled her head. She pressed herself against him, touching his face lightly with her fingertips. For Hermione and Draco, the world disappeared for them in that moment and allowed them to bittersweet reunion that should have been deserved.
But sweet moments like this were never meant to last. The deep conscious of Hermione’s mind awakened with a sound warning, forcing her to push Draco away from her. Her chocolate-colored eyes wide with shock that she allowed him such liberties with her person. She should have never allowed this moment to happen. She should have pushed him away and fled the room, but she did not. Instead, she let her heart rule offering him a reprieve to gain back the small tattered bits of love she still held deep within.
“This,” she motioned between them. Her words were breathless and filled with something that Draco could only be akin to desire, “can never happen between us again. I – I cannot do this with you, Draco. I cannot play this – whatever this is – with you right now.”
Shakily, she fled from the kitchen and placed as much distance she could between them. She had thought by keeping herself busy with the last-minute details, she would not have to let this kiss they shared be something she could contemplate. Silently, she berated herself for allowing herself a moment of weakness in his arms. She could not deny it, even to herself – she still loved him. Having him here with her was causing her feelings that she had suppressed for so long to bubble to the surface. Part of her wondered if she would be able to keep them below the surface once she was back at the manor. It was going to be a hard task, she knew, but if she wanted – what did she really want?
She was not sure anymore.
Taking her wand, she murmured a spell causing the last boxes to disappear from the room. Just then, Draco appeared in the doorway of the room.
“Ready to leave?” He asked.
Hermione nodded. Draco moving to stand next to her, his arm around her waist. She was not even given a chance to say anything as the two of them apparated from the cottage and reappeared in the foyer of Malfoy Manor. The CRACK! sent Narcissa and Lucius to come out of the study with Rose trailing behind her grandparents.
“Hello, Lucius, Narcissa,” Hermione greeted them nervously.
“Welcome back home,” Narcissa announced making her way to hug her daughter-in-law. “I’m glad you are home with us.”
All of Hermione’s fears had washed away in that moment. She returned the warm hug back with her own. She could feel the tears gathering in her eyes. She had been so afraid that her in-laws would not welcome her back, but she had been wrong. Both were happy. Even Lucius, a man she knew who never showed an ounce of feelings in front of anyone, had welcomed her, not with a hug but a squeeze of her hand.
“Come,” Narcissa shooed them into the study, “let us catch up before you both head to bed.”
“I will take up Rose to her room,” Draco offered gathering up his daughter and climbing the stairs. They could hear the two of them talking and Rose giggling at whatever he was telling her.
There was a sense of guilt buried deep inside of Hermione’s heart as she stood there watching the interaction between the four of them. Rose had already integrated herself as if she had never left. She had already become affectionate with her grandparents, hugging both and offering each one a goodnight kiss on the cheek before heading up the stairs in her father’s arms. Now, she saw that there had been no reason for worrying. Rose would flourish here in the Malfoy household with her grandparents to guide her.
“I’m sorry,” she whispered wanting to repair the damage she had done to them.
“What is done is done,” Narcissa remarked once they were in the safety of the study. She gestured for her husband and Hermione to take their seats. She poured them each tea and handed the cups to them. “I don’t expect things to be normal for now, but Lucius and I are hoping that your return will be permanent and give us a chance to build a relationship with Rose.”
“I think Rose would love to know you both,” Hermione stated matter-of-factly. “You and Lucius are her only grandparents left.”
Narcissa frowned. “What happened to Diana and William?”
She glanced down at the cup in her hand. “They were killed in an accident in Monte Carlo. The same stretch of road that killed the late Princess Grace.”
There was silence as both Narcissa and Lucius took in this news. It was unexpected news and one they had not expected to hear. But now, it was understood why she nor Lucius had been able to find them during the months of Hermione’s disappearance.
“There is something we need to discuss,” Lucius broke the awkward silence that hung between the three of them just moments ago, “we won’t discuss it this evening as this is meant to be a meant to be a meeting of three – you, myself, and Narcissa. Tomorrow, I believe Draco has several meetings in the morning which will leave us to discuss this matter personally. I trust you won’t tell Draco of this because that boy of mine will mettle in the affairs meant not for mortals.”
“Of course,” Hermione offered having finished her tea and set the cup back down. She rose to her feet and prepared herself to head up the stairs. She knew that whatever it was that her in-laws wanted to discuss seemed to have been bothering them recently and it seemed that only Hermione would offer whatever it was to ease their minds. “There is the matter of my boss. He does not know of my former life and Draco believes it best that I tell him and seek removal from work until Rose has returned to full health.”
“I think that would be ideal,” Narcissa remarked thoughtfully. She could see how her words had made Hermione slightly upset. “Hear me out, dearest – if Rose goes into surgery, she will need you more than ever. You have been her entire world and she is going to need that once more if she is to recover. Lucius and I will gladly help you as much as we can.”
Hermione knew that Narcissa was right. “Thank you both,” she whispered rising from her seat and leaving the two of them alone.
Narcissa glanced over at her husband. “Tomorrow, darling, tomorrow.”
Luna Lovegood set down the large box down in the middle of the master room of the cottage and glanced around. It was unreal that this whole place now belonged to both her and Blaise. She knew Hermione meant well when she had done this, but it still did not mend the broken heart that still beat against her chest. She did not want to pursue any relationship with Blaise further. He was as much responsible for their fallout as Ginny Weasley-Potter. And though she did not escape punishment from her, Blaise had, and she had every intention of seeing to it that he received equally dishing of it.
Luna never had any intention of allowing him back into her life. She had promised herself that she would never give him the chance again.
That was until Fate decided that Draco should find Hermione again. Luna hated the Fates. Luna wished that Fates would mind their own damn business and find some God to meddle with. She would not fall into whatever game they set up for her and Blaise. She had no intentions of allowing him the chance to break her heart once more.
Speak of the devil and he will appear, Luna thought annoyed by said appearance of the devil.
“Satan,” she snarked the greeted, “I see hell let you loose.”
Blaise could not help but smile at her. He was not expecting her to make this easy for him. In all honesty, he knew that once Hermione would be too busy easing herself into married life once more, Luna would ignore the advice her friend had parted to the two of them when she gifted the cottage to them.
“Is that any way to greet your lover?” He asked coming into the room.
“Former,” she growled. She crossed her arms over her chest and shot him a glare. “This is my room, Blaise, get out!”
“No,” he simply stated pausing in front of her.
“Listen and listen well, Zabini: I want nothing from you,” she hissed. “You broke my heart once. You won’t get a second chance.”
“And here I thought we made progress in these past few weeks,” he murmured.
“I did it for Hermione,” she returned. “Now that she is not here, I can drop all pleasantries between us.”
“No, you won’t,” he stated narrowing his eyes at her. “You made a promise to Hermione that you would willingly try things out between us, and I don’t think she would like to hear about how her best friend went back on her word to her.”
Luna winced, remembering her promise. She did not want to go back on her promise, but her heart was still healing and having him here with her was making what little progress the healing it had done would only unravel.
“I gave you my heart, Blaise, once and you broke it,” she whispered taking a step back away from him. She turned her eyes away from him. “I can’t trust you not to do it again.”
And with those as her final words, Luna left the room and Blaise behind.
Glaring at Draco, Hermione stood her ground. “I told you I would not share your bed,” she stated firmly.
Draco equally held his ground, refusing to let Hermione win this round. “And what will you tell Rose when she asks why her parents do not share a bed?”
“We haven’t shared a bed since she was conceived,” Hermione returned glaring at her husband, “so I really doubt Rose has any idea that parents share a room much less a bed together.”
Draco’s winter blue eyes narrowed. “I told you when you asked for my help that the requirement would be that you return to my bed as my wife.”
“Fine!” She growled grabbing the sheets and pulling them down and getting into bed. She turned her back on him. “Stay on your side, Draco.”
Smirking in victory, Draco followed his wife into their bed. He knew that it would only be a matter of time before things changed between them. He would make sure of it. “Of course,” he purred laying on his side and falling asleep.
Hermione stayed awake waiting for Draco to fall asleep. Once she knew he had lulled himself into a deep sleep, she rose out of the bed and trotted to the room across. The entire floor had rooms for her to choose from, but Hermione was in no mood to find the right room to fall asleep in. She had considered going to lay with Rose, but she did not wake up her little girl especially when Rose had such a trying day.
Closing the door behind her, Hermione padded her way through the dark to the bed. She was too tired to look for a light and too tired to consider anything else. Drawing back the sheets, Hermione climbed into bed and fell into a deep sleep.
Around one-thirty in the morning, she found herself roused from her sleep as the nightstand light was turned on in her face. Standing over was the angry face of her husband looking down at her.
“Draco, wha –“Hermione murmured covering her eyes as they tried to adjust to the light shining brightly in the room.
“I warned you,” he snarled pulling back the sheets from her body and tossing her over his shoulder.
“Put me down!” Hermione cried out banging on her husband’s back. “I don’t want to be in the same bed as you!”
“I told you, Hermione,” Draco growled tossing her back on their bed, “we are to share a bed. It was part of the deal. We are going to reconcile, and we are going to present to Rose a united front for her. The wizarding world will see a happily married couple returning to public life and I will damn make sure of it.”
“I will make your life miserable,” she whispered.
“I will expect nothing more from you,” he said crawling back into bed and returning once more to sleep leaving Hermione alone to her thoughts.