Author: Sunflour PM
Sometimes I wish I hadn't been in such a hurry to move forward. There comes a point when it becomes impossible to go back. Pre HBPRated: Fiction T - English - Humor/Romance - Draco M. & Ginny W. - Chapters: 15 - Words: 62,149 - Reviews: 71 - Favs: 11 - Follows: 10 - Updated: 04-23-06 - Published: 01-19-05 - id: 2226130
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
A/N: Okay, basically what I've done here is re-written my first two chapters and combined them. Since I got reviews for both, I'll say my thanks to my reviewers at the bottom. I re-wrote this story, trying to stay on the same plot because, well basically, the first one was terrible. Hah, so anyways, hope this new one is better than before. Enjoy!
Summary: Long forgotten in her cell, she sits waiting. She remembers how she got there. The question is; will she ever get out?
Disclaimer: I don't own any of these characters! Just the plot!
Chapter One: Prologue
It wasn't supposed to be this way.
She wasn't supposed to be locked up in a cell, her hands chained firmly together, and long neglected by her captors. It seemed, ever since that fateful day that started it all, her life had gone in the complete opposite direction in which she had expected it to.
That day, that was the day she got to know a side of himself he'd purposely kept concealed from the world. Her recollections of those times were easy to recall, and most cheerful as well. Almost like the crisp pages of a new, unused book, just waiting to be read by anyone who happened to come along.
With a small sigh, her eyes fluttered shut and she allowed herself to slip slowly, yet gracefully, into the past. Forcing her mind to remain clear, she focused solely on her most treasured memories; the ones of how she first fell in love with the one boy she'd never forget…
Outside the protected, school walls, a war had been raging. Soldiers, from both the Light and the Dark side, were killed or captured everyday. Students who still chose to receive the Daily Prophet only read it out of pure habit, for now, the newspaper was tragically filled from front to back with obituaries or missing wizards and witches.
She'd been in the abandoned Astronomy Tower, working furiously on a Potions essay. A homework assignment she'd been struggling to finish before curfew.
He had come for another reason, however. He was, of course, Head Boy, and she should've expected he'd be the one to patrol the forsaken tower. She'd heard his footsteps, but was too nervous to actually turn around and find his silver, emotionless eyes penetrating her small form.
He saw her, paused, and then slowly walked over to where she sat. From behind her, she could feel his presence as he edged closer, for where ever he went he seemed to carry a presence.
One that demanded both fear, and calm. On his bad days, you could practically see signs shouting, 'Danger!' around him as he stormed through the crowded hallways. He'd lost his mother early in the war, but during those times, that had become unusually common.
From the ledge of the tower window on which she sat, she finally decided to speak, though still not turning her head.
"Malfoy," she greeted, noting that her voice hardly gave away how nervous she felt.
He nodded in return, "Weasley."
The wind blew slightly, lowering the already bleak temperature. Ginny pulled her flimsy cloak firmly around her shoulders, determined to find some warmth. He did nothing to help her. He was a Malfoy, she was a Weasley, and just then, there'd be no objections.
That was all there was to it, really. On any normal occasion, she would have been indignant that he gave her his cloak as any other gentleman would've done. That night, however, as she was pushing being out after curfew, she kept her mouth tightly shut and settled for a warming charm instead.
When the news of his mother's passing had spread around the school, students had begun noticing that the young Malfoy's cold demeanor had changed somewhat. Yes, he did still mock and jeer at all Gryffindors who so much as glanced at him. Yet, his attempt was half-hearted, and everybody observed this with the highest amount of curiosity.
Was it possible that Draco could actually care for another human being besides himself? Nonsense, they would say, he's just going through a phase. Pretty soon he'll be back to his old self; a prat with no conscience.
Nonetheless, Harry Potter chose to no longer let the infamous Slytherin's insults get to him; instead, he'd give him a look of understanding and pity, trying his best to communicate that Malfoy wasn't alone in the losses.
This only appeared to incense Draco further however, so his insults grew more in hatred each time they met in the hallways, until finally, Harry gave up on being nice and went back to defending himself the best way he knew how; his wand. There wasn't a day that had gone by where Malfoy and Harry hadn't been fighting or dueling on every given occasion.
After a few minutes of silence, Malfoy asked in a weary tone,
"Haven't been able to buy a new cloak yet, Weasley?"
Ginny brushed this comment off, having heard it many times before and continued to concentrate on finishing her assignment, trying only to focus on her quill as it stained the parchment. Annoyed, Malfoy tried another attempt.
"Well thank the gods! Finally, one of the Weasleys knows how to keep their filthy mouths shut."
Still, she showed no sign of having heard him. Infuriated, he leaned down and grabbed her shoulders, coercing her to look at him.
"What in Merlin's name is wrong with you, Weasley? Gone deaf, have you?"
Seeing her eyes grow wide with worry as he continued to shake her, he promptly stopped and straightened up. Confused at his abrupt behavior, she gave him a questioning glance but returned to her essay.
"You alright, Malfoy?" She asked, resuming her concentration.
He glared at the back of her head, seemingly determined not to let his feelings of frustration at her show through and simultaneously remained impassive with the situation.
"You wouldn't understand." He replied bitterly, turning and looking out the window.
"Wouldn't understand what exactly Malfoy?" she inquired quietly, so close to finishing her essay that she wasn't in the mood for games.
"Everything, alright? I can't bear this school, the students here, who think they can just wander in abandoned towers whenever they please, and I don't need anyone's sympathy. Including yours!" he shouted suddenly, startling Ginny.
"Well, enlighten me then, Malfoy. Why, exactly, should I be 'sympathizing' towards you anyway?" She said with sarcastic enthusiasm.
His eyes flitted over to her own briefly, giving her a scathing look before returning to the Hogwarts' shadowed grounds.
"Shove off," he muttered darkly over his shoulder.
Ginny gave a frustrated sigh and heatedly tossed her quill down, feeling slightly defeated at the prospect of not being able to finish her paper. She shifted around so that she was facing him.
"You always push people away, even if they're showing the slightest bit of concern." She ground out, crossing her arms.
"Yeah, well the next time I push you away, I hope there's a small House Elf kneeling behind you so you fall and hit your head." He snapped angrily. "You want to help, then why don't you start by minding your own personal affairs?"
By now, she was standing, her eyes alight in anger.
"What I don't understand is why, even though there are a horde of people who've all lost someone as well, you act like you're the only one. You isolate yourself from others, trying not to draw attention to yourself, but ending up succeeding in just the contrary. Everyone recognizes you, Malfoy! You will always be noticed!" She shouted, surprising even herself with the intensity in her voice.
"Jealous, Weasley?" he smirked, his eyes dancing mockingly as he stepped away from the ledge and studied her reaction calculatingly.
Her fingers itched to slap him. Instead, she whirled around angrily and took deep, calming breaths.
Ironic how her worst enemy had been the first to realize something she'd taken years to fully conceive. Yes, she was indeed jealous. Being the youngest of seven did have its disadvantages at times.
Attention wasn't the only thing she wanted, though.
They stood, listening only to her heavy breathing and the profound, lulling quietness surrounding the room. Finally, she heard his steps retreat. The door closed softly behind him.
Though it seemed like the events of that night had occurred ages ago, it still surprised Ginny that it had indeed happened barely two years before she'd arrived in this prison of a basement; her new home.
She was snapped from her thoughts as the cell door opened, emitting an eerie scarping noise. It was almost as if the door wasn't meant to open, yet it was being forced to by an, as of yet, unseen enemy.
Ginny could make out the faintest details of a burly person lurking in the doorway. He, as she assumed the person to be a man, threw in a half-filled container of water, then a plate of stale food.
The same had occurred either once a day, or every few days, depending on how lazy her guard was at the moment. Never once had he uttered a single word to her. She'd tried speaking to him before, asking him if she would ever be allowed to leave her cell. Always, she received the same reply; painful silence.
'At least in Azkaban, they give you one meal a day.' Ginny thought bitterly as she sat down and leaned against the stone wall. Wincing, she quickly sat up straight again, having forgotten about the old scars on her back that refused to heal.
Looking around with a sigh, Ginny observed her caliginous surroundings. In the far left corner, where the supposed water closet resided, there stood a shoddy toilet, or what Ginny liked to call, 'The Throne.' It was covered in rust and charmed to be extremely uncomfortable, almost to the point of being painful, whenever the user took a seat. One of the many 'bright ideas,' her captors had come up with over the time she'd spent there.
In the right corner, a poor excuse for a bed rested. Its mattress was too firm and served to make Ginny's back feel immensely stiff every time she tried to sleep on it. For this reason, most nights found Ginny huddled in the corner, lying on the dirt floor.
It had been a long and eventless day, interrupted only by the sound of distant cries from other prisoners, yet she found herself strangely full and tiredly pushed her plate away. Deciding she might as well attempt to get some rest, she lay gently on her side, where it surprisingly caused little pain.
Though now she was as good as dust to them, her first months at the prison were quite different. Her captors had taken to beating her every night or so, trying to coerce her to leak information. It had been difficult, and painful…oh, so very painful, but Ginny had managed not to say a word, but answered instead with anguished screams.
Eventually, they realized she wouldn't talk and left her alone, deciding only to make her cell a most improper and uncomfortable living situation as was possible. Disappointment flooded through her as she wearily sat up. These thoughts would not do.
She looked towards the door, hoping against all odds to find it unlocked. However, it was bolted shut, as always.
As she did every night, Ginny prayed to God that someone, anyone, would come and take her away from this hell. Sometime later in the night she drifted off, dreaming of the man that'd haunted her mind for two years. It was usually in her dreams that she could remember the most about him, even the faintest of details.
The way his icy, blonde hair hung limply in front of his sparkling, silver eyes. His cologne, a scent nearly indescribable, except for the vague hint of firewood, lingered in places he'd been. His body itself was something that could take hours to describe, but one thing Ginny knew was that her hand fit perfectly into his. It'd never been uncomfortable, or clammy, but gave her the sense of security, like no matter what happened, she would be okay because he was holding her hand.
"Draco," she mumbled mournfully in her sleep. There would be little rest as long as memories of him filled her mind. She felt her mind wander and began remembering her previous dreams.
Ginny had always been one of those people fascinated by dreams. Most people she knew would think of a dream as simply an imaginative story that you could never remember once you'd woken up. Not Ginny though. To her, a dream was an alternate universe, where anything could happen to anyone anywhere.
That was her favorite part. Once she was deep asleep, she found that she could take a journey through the darkest depths of her mind, and find out exactly who she was, even if it was for the briefest of moments.
She could relive every triumph or tragedy, go back and taste every dessert ever made, become the world's most beautiful singer or most graceful dancer, and run much faster than should've been humanly possible.
Content with imagining the impossible, she sighed peacefully, though subconsciously trying futilely to keep flashes from the final battle clear of her mind. Her attempts were useless, however, as Ginny spend the rest of the night tossing and turning on the cold floor.
Ginny was on a mission.
Heading towards the back of the library, a part which most never used anymore because the books there were extremely rude, she scanned the passing aisles for a book that could help her accomplish her task; a Potions essay she needed to complete and hand in immediately after lunch, which she was skipping just so she could finish the blasted paper.
'Greasy git,' Ginny thought vehemently of the former Slytherin, now teacher. 'Of course, the one book I need would be back here. It's not as if he shouts at me enough in class, now he'd like to have a book join in the fun?'
She stopped abruptly, faintly hearing something. The sound was muffled somewhat, so she had trouble determining what exactly it was. It sounded like…like something…no, someone was crying!
Spending a few seconds reveling her newly found, spectacular hearing, she quickly moved closer in the direction the sound was coming from, which ironically enough, was the back of the library.
Stopping in front of a bookcase, she stooped down and peeked through the gaps, trying to see who it was that she had heard. To her surprise, she saw nothing except an expensive looking cloak lying on the ground.
Eager to know whose it was, she walked around the bookcase and got down on her knees. The cloak looks costly she thought as she picked it up and examined it curiously.
'Maybe there's a nametag somewhere.' She continued to search, but found none. Just as she was getting ready to put the cloak down and continue her quest for the potions book, she heard a familiar voice drawl,
"What Weasley, are you so poor that you have to steal someone else's cloak?"
Whipping around quickly, she glared as she saw Malfoy, leaning against the same bookcase she had just hid behind. What caught her off guard, though, was not that he always seemed to show up at the oddest of moments, but that his eyes were slightly bloodshot.
It looked as if… no it couldn't be… had Malfoy actually been crying?
Author's Note: Thanks to the2ofus-wedreamas1, Lady Orical, Pink Monkey Pirate, Jade Summers, who originally had reviewed for my story before it was re-written. It seems that I have lost my beta! I can promise you I would've posted, but I had to go over it at least 50 times trying to find all the mistakes. I probably still missed some too! So anyone who is interested, tell me so in the review…speaking of which