|A Clock Is Ticking
Author: MorganMay444 PM
Hermione is diagnosed with a muggle illness, which causes her memory to slowly deteriorate. Draco has to come to terms with the news and help his wife through the distressing time. This is their story.Rated: Fiction M - English - Drama/Angst - Hermione G. & Draco M. - Words: 6,226 - Reviews: 12 - Favs: 36 - Follows: 3 - Published: 12-01-11 - Status: Complete - id: 7599549
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Hermione has Rose on her knee when the Healer gives them the news. "You have a Muggle disease, Mrs Malfoy." Hermione already knew this of course, things just hadn't been right in her mind lately. Draco is standing behind his wife's chair; hands on her shoulders as he listens to the Healer explain what is wrong with the woman he loves. In all honesty, he doesn't really understand, he just knows this isn't good. Rose is happily oblivious to what is going on, playing with her mother's hair. It all seems surreal to Draco, this sort of thing doesn't happen to him, happen to his loved ones.
They get home that evening and put Rose to bed, Hermione reading her a story from one of her many books. Like mother, like daughter. When the little blonde girl slips into sleep Hermione turns to see her husband at the door, leaning against the frame with his arms crossed. "Nothing's going to change you know. I'm not going anywhere." She reaches him and puts an arm around his midriff, pulling him out the room and closing the door quietly behind her.
"You might not, but this will." He taps her forehead with his index finger and she frowns up at him, grasping his hand and moving it away. She knows things will get worse and in a way he's right, her mind will slowly deteriorate to almost nothing. But she doesn't want to think about that, Hermione Malfoy doesn't forget things, she just doesn't.
That night they lay in bed, arms wrapped around each other tightly. When Hermione thinks he's finally asleep she allows the waiting tears to escape her eyes. It isn't fair, why does she have to be ill? She doesn't want to simply forget everything, everyone. Her life has been a wonderful mess and she doesn't wish to forget it. However, there's nothing she can do now, except take the medication subscribed.
Which she does take the next morning, and the morning after that, and the morning after that. The next hurdle to jump is telling Harry and the Weasleys. It's a Sunday morning when the young Malfoy family Apparate to the Burrow. Everyone is there waiting for them and happy greetings are shared, although the happiness is short lived. The adults circle the kitchen table while the children play in the living room. Victoire and Teddy stand nearby listening; they're old enough to know something is wrong. Hermione had insisted she tell them the news, but when the time comes she can't do it. So Draco does instead, hand clasping his wife's tightly as he speaks. There's silence as the group take it in, eyes growing wide or beginning to water. The first person to react is actually not one of the intended adults but Victoire, who lets out a sob and engulfs Hermione in a hug. This is when the sounds of quiet crying begin to wave around the room. Even Ron has his face in his hands; an attempt to hold some dignity.
The next few weeks carried on like normal, pills added into their daily routine. They'd drop Rose at the Burrow before Apparating to the Ministry to start the work day. Hermione would catch the glances of passers-by, their eyes usually on Draco as if she were already gone. Her colleagues in the Law Enforcement Department tried on numerous occasions to lighten her work load, but she refused. "I'm not incapable of working, you know." She'd insist several times a week at best.
It was during the fourth week things began to go downhill. Side effects of the pills were kicking in, meaning more often than not Draco would wake in the middle of the night to sounds of Hermione vomiting in the bathroom. The first time it happened he panicked, rushing to her side and asking frantically what he should do. To begin with she refused his help, demanding he go back to bed. Only when he denied her this did she give in, instructing to get her a hot water bottle and a drink. After a few days he became accustomed to it and knew exactly what to do, retrieving the necessities from the kitchen before returning to hold her hair from her face. Before this point her memory hadn't really suffered, just the usual forgetfulness any person experienced. Until one night when Draco finds Hermione in their kitchen, cradling her hand with tears in her eyes. "Hermione? What have you done?" He hurried forward and took her hand in his, the skin bright red and hot to the touch.
"I don't remember turning the kettle on." She states, looking up at him with terrified eyes. This is the first time she knows she's forgotten something, and it scares her half to death.
"It's fine. It's fine." Draco takes out his wand and mutters a spell, her hand returning to its normal colour and temperature. He proceeds to make the coffee for her and they go to bed. That night she waits to hear his steady breathing before crying again. Only, Draco isn't really asleep, he rarely sleeps these days.
Things get progressively worse from then on, small things turn to bigger things. There's a knock on Draco's office door one afternoon and he opens the door to see Luna Lovegood holding Hermione's hand. "I found her wandering around the fifth floor." When Hermione sees her husband's face she launches herself at him, wrapping her arms around his neck desperately.
"I can't remember where my office is." Luna takes this as her queue to leave, and the door shuts. Draco scoops Hermione into his arms and carries her to his desk, sitting her down before pouring her a glass of water.
"It's okay, it's alright." He sooths her hair, handing over the glass and watching her sip it. The medicine stopped working weeks ago; he knows this, but refuses to acknowledge it yet. Instead he kneels beside her and runs a hand along her arm, waiting for the right moment to suggest she stop working.
The next incident occurs at Harry and Ginny's anniversary party, when Ron appears by her side and puts an arm around her shoulders. "You alright, Hermione?" She stares at him in confusion.
"Err, yes. Thank you." There's a pause as Ron realises something is wrong and she adds sheepishly. "Who are you?" The red head's eyes widen and he searches the room for Draco, or anyone who will help. Most of the people in the room have heard and fall silent, eyes on the best friends worriedly.
"Hermione, this is Ron. He's Ron." Draco rushes to her side, glancing from his wife to her supposed best friend. "You've known him since you were eleven, you met him at Hogwarts." The blonde puts an arm around her waist as she surveys Ron closely.
"I'm your best friend." Ron added with a slow nod. Harry stands next to Ron, a hand on the man's shoulder comfortingly. Hermione continues to stare at the man with bright red hair, the hair stands out to her but his face doesn't ring a bell.
"I…" She turns to look up at her husband, eyes cloudy. "I don't remember him…" This is when Draco insists they leave, he'll show her photos of Ron and she'll remember him in no time. So they leave, Rose protesting in Draco's arms.
Three weeks later, Hermione still doesn't remember Ron. Draco has shown her all the pictures of him in their photo albums so she now knows who he is, but there are no memories of him and it frustrates her. Rose keeps asking why mummy can't remember Uncle Ron and Draco has to explain that mummy is ill, this happens at least once a week. After much convincing Hermione is finally persuaded to take time off work, considering she rarely remembers how to get there anymore anyway.
It was a Wednesday when Draco found Hermione leaning against the doorframe of Rose's room, brows knitted together. "Hermione? What are you doing?" He asks with a frown, reaching her and placing an arm around her waist like he usually does.
"Who…who does this little girl belong to? I forgot who we're babysitting for." She glances up at Draco, whose eyes are now wide with fright. No, no, no, no, no.
"Hermione, that's Rose. Our daughter." The blonde steps away from her, a hand running through his hair restlessly. He was afraid of this, she wasn't meant to forget them. Draco steps into the room, pulling his wife with him and directing her to the bed where they kneel and watch their daughter sleep. "See, this is Rose. You know her, you remember her." There was a pause as Hermione tried her hardest to remember the little girl, squeezing her eyes shut tightly in desperation.
"I-I can't." She opened her eyes to see Draco gazing at her, his eyes watery and pink. "I'm sorry. I want to remember, I really do." Tears began to roll down her cheeks as Draco pulled her into an embrace.
"It's fine. Everything is fine." It wasn't fine, of course it wasn't. His wife couldn't remember their daughter. Her block against Ron he could deal with, but not this. Not Rose.
The next day Draco left Rose with Harry before taking Hermione to St Mungo's. They waited for what felt like hours before a Healer took them into her office. The blonde man asked if there was anything they could do to help, explaining the situation about Rose. The Healer handed him a bunch of fliers about Hermione's illness, all advertising a conference at the Ministry for said illness. Hermione read through them happily, more than excited to meet people who shared her problem. While Draco asked the Healer again if there was anything they could do, the woman shook her head. So they left.
Hermione had taken a liking to Rose, although she still couldn't remember her. They did the same as they did with Ron, going through photo albums full of pictures of Rose and Hermione playing in the house, on the beach, at the Burrow. Draco had the hardest time, explaining to Rose that her mother couldn't remember her. Rose cried for hours and he couldn't do anything except hold her.
The day of the conference arrived and they dropped Rose off at the Burrow, again. Hermione managed an awkward hello to Ron, who grinned despite of himself. The Ministry was buzzing with people, more so than normal. People would wave a greeting to the couple, most of whom Hermione didn't know, or couldn't remember at least. They took a seat and listened as wizard, after witch, after wizard, spoke about their struggle with the Muggle disease. It wasn't like anything Draco had expected, the sufferers all had smiles on their faces. The amount of times he laughed at their humour was countless, and he glanced to his side to see Hermione beaming. "I'm going to get a drink, want one?" Draco muttered, standing from his chair. Hermione shook her head and he kissed her hair softly before slipping out the room. There was a refreshments table next door and he went to make himself a coffee, most of the people in this room were men, mainly of the older generations. One man joined the coffee queue behind him and Draco gave him a welcoming smile. "Morning." Draco nodded, unsure as to whether this man suffered from the illness or not.
"My wife." The old man stated. "Stage 6." Draco remembered the Healer mentioning stages of this illness. Hermione was in stage 3. "Jeffery." They two men shook hands. Jeffery's hair was almost all grey, skin wrinkled and bags under his eyes.
"Draco. My wife too, stage 4." The older man made a noise of understanding as the queue moved. They stood in silence before curiosity got the better of Draco. "Have you been with your wife since she was diagnosed?" The man nodded a reply and the blonde continued. "Any advice?" A thoughtful frown crossed Jeffery's face.
"You want my advice?" It was Draco's turn to nod. "Get out now, while you still can." There was a roar of clapping from the conference room, causing them to glance in that direction before the old man continued. "Don't get me wrong, I love my wife. But I wouldn't go through it all again." They reached the front of the queue and Jeffery began to make himself a cup of tea. Draco stood frozen, surprised at the advice and wishing now that he hadn't asked. Words wouldn't form as he began to think over the man's words. Leave Hermione? The idea hadn't crossed his mind until now, it would make things easier for him. Jeffery bid him farewell and disappeared into the array of faces. The blonde shook his head, ridding it of such horrific thoughts. He couldn't leave her, not now. She needed him and he needed her.
Draco decided not to tell Hermione about meeting Jeffery, it would only upset her. He slumped on the sofa of their small house, Harry and Ginny have come round to keep him company which he is more than thankful for. Harry sits beside him while Ginny chats with Hermione in the kitchen, the children playing happily on the floor of the nursery. "Things will be fine, you know. You've got us, we'll do anything to help." Harry breaks the silence, leaning forward on his thighs to mirror the blonde. Draco wants to yell at him, call him a blithering idiot. Because things aren't going to be fine, they'll never be fine. But he doesn't, instead nodding his head slowly to convey that he'd heard and agrees. Even though he doesn't.
Ginny makes tea, against Hermione's wishes. The adults eat in silence, the only noises coming from the nursery where the children are eating at their little picnic table. Draco spares a glance in his wife's direction several times every few minutes, as if waiting for her to forget how to eat. The idea of this seems ridiculous for a minute, until he realises that at some point she will forget. And he doesn't know what he'll do when that day comes.
When they finish their meal Harry clears the dishes away while Ginny goes to check on the children. Making Draco feel like he's the ill one too, he's perfectly capable of tending to his daughter and the dishes. Hermione sits with her hands in her lap, staring at them as she twiddles her fingers around one another. The wedding ring sits on her finger and she concentrates on in, desperate not to forget how she got it, or the man who gave it to her. She felt like a disappointment to her husband already, what with forgetting their daughter, whom she'd grown to love anew. A part of her was surprised he hadn't left yet, taking Rose and their friends with him. None of them should have to deal with her. "Draco?" She spins to see Harry leaning over the dishwasher, purse in his hand. Draco stands from the table. "What's this doing in the dishwasher?" They all glance at Hermione who pushes her chair away from the table.
"Oh, you found my purse. I misplaced it yesterday." She stands and makes her way over to her best friend, taking the purse from him thankfully. Harry is one person she refuses to forget, most of the things she's done in her life are thanks to him.
"Why didn't you tell me?" Draco asks once they've waved farewell to Harry, Ginny and James at the front door. If this is going to work they have to be a team, which means she can't keep things from him.
"I didn't want to bother you with it. I would have found it in the end." Hermione shrugs her shoulders, turning to Rose and leaning down to pick her up. "It's someone's bed time." She climbs the stairs and out of site, leaving Draco to clear the mess in the nursery.
It doesn't take him long, a few toys here and there but nothing major. He hears Hermione wish their daughter a goodnight and flick the light switch, shutting the door behind her. The floor boards creak over head, which means she's getting ready for bed. Draco ascends the stairs and finds her sitting on their bed, staring ahead at the large mirror on the wall. "Hermione?" He hesitates for a minute, has she forgotten something else? Please, no. She turns to look at him, really look at him. It's obvious what this is all doing to him, but he doesn't want to let it show.
"I love you." Hermione smiles slightly and Draco lets out a sigh of relief, shoulders relaxing once more. "I will always love you. Always." The blonde makes his way towards her and sits close, arm snacking round her waist. "I refuse to forget you. I love you." Her arms cross over her nighty as she gives a determined nod. This makes him feel a little better and he kisses her forehead.
"I love you too." She pulls him into a tight embrace, nuzzling her face in his neck. After a pause she leans away and pushes him onto his back, climbing on top of him and hovering there for a second. "Hermione-" Draco attempts to get up but she pushes him back down.
"No. Just let me do this. Please." The pleading look in her eyes makes him succumb and he lays still. Hermione pecks his lips gently, moving to kiss his cheeks in turn, then his forehead. She removes his shirt and throws it aside; kissing along any exposed skin she can reach. She's determined to remember every detail about him, how his skin feels, how it tastes. Draco's eyes flutter shut to block out the tears and she kisses their lids. Inhaling his familiar and comforting scent, she allows it to fill her senses. It comes to the point where she's kissed everywhere possible, so replaces her lips with her fingers. Hermione takes hold of his left arm and runs her hands across it, there in plain view is his dark mark. Faded to almost nothing now, she runs her fingers along it, tracing the shape of the snake and skull. A noise of protest reverberates in his throat and she pauses to look at him, eyes still tightly shut. She leans and kisses the inked skin briefly before returning to his face and placing her lips on his. "Open your eyes." Hermione whispers against his lips and he does so without hesitation. Their eyes meet and she falls slowly onto his chest, head fitting snuggly beneath his chin. Draco actually sleeps that night, and Hermione doesn't cry.
Draco makes the decision to take time off work a few weeks later, much to Hermione's dismay. It takes days for her to come round, but when she realises this would give her more time with him and Rose she gave in. Daily chores around the house become difficult for Hermione to complete, such as preparing food or using appliances. Before they were just problematic, but now they're are almost impossible tasks. She can't help but get increasing aggravated because there's nothing she can do about it. The medication still isn't working but makes her tired instead, so Draco takes her to bed at least once every other day. It doesn't bother him because that means he gets a break and can get some work done from home instead, sending it to the office when completed.
Rose's forth birthday arrives out of nowhere and they celebrate with a party. Balloons and streamers line the walls and their relatively small house is packed to the brim with family and friends. This is the first time since Hermione's diagnosis that they get to see Draco's mother, and he's relieved when Hermione remembers Narcissa. Amidst the festivities he explains to the older woman what exactly is wrong with his wife and receives a reassuring hug that makes him feel just that little bit better.
Hermione has the time of her life at the party, running around with the children one minute, conversing with adults the next. Keeping oneself preoccupied is proving an easier task for her than it is for Draco. He finds the birthday cake sat on the counter with five candles in and he stares for a minute. Despite the fact all the balloons and banners say it's Rose's forth, Hermione is still under the illusion it's her fifth. Before anyone sees he picks the fifth candle from the icing and chucks it aside. The room erupts into song as he carries the cake to his daughter and she blows the candles out. Hermione is stood behind Rose with her hands on her daughters little shoulders, grinning through happy laughter and kissing Rose's cheek. For a second Draco allows himself to push away the fact his wife is ill, because you wouldn't know from looking at this picture perfect scene. And for the first time in months Draco smiles, a proper heartfelt smile.
When the last guests leave Draco finds Hermione and Rose almost asleep on the sofa. Even though Hermione can't remember the young girl she hasn't treated her any differently and this makes Draco love his wife even more. "Daddy! Come nap with us." Rose says, reaching her arms out to him. He walks over and towers above them, unsure of how to go about it. Hermione moves them both forward, giving Draco room to lounge, then once he's down she moves them back so they're leaning on him. To begin with he isn't comfortable at all, but after the three of them fidget around a little they settle into a comfy position. Draco listens to their even breathing, hands soothing over Hermione's hair as he occasionally kisses the back of her head. The room around them is a mess but at that moment he doesn't care, and is just content with cuddling his girls. If Hermione's condition continues to get worse he may never have a chance at this again.
Within the next few weeks all the Weasley clan disappear from Hermione's memory, except Fred. And George, though she does remember he is dead. No one knows why only Fred and George remain in her memories, but they conclude it must have been something to do with all the pranks they played in Hogwarts. Who could forget that havoc?
So visiting the Burrow becomes a strange thing for Hermione, being surrounded by people she doesn't know. Sure, they show her pictures and tell stories which she can actually recall. But she still doesn't know them. On this particular occasion its Teddy's birthday, and Hermione does know who he is, he's Lupin and Tonks' son. Amidst the festivities Fred is sat in an armchair by the fire, Hermione on the floor near his legs. Her eyes survey the people scattered around laughing and having fun, willing herself to remember them. But she can't. At one point she thinks she remembers the oldest woman handing out drinks, but the feeling soon passes. By the end of the night Hermione gives up trying to remember, succumbing to defeat. She's just so tired, too tired. "Hermione?" Harry is standing over her, hand outstretched, and she takes it thankfully. Harry is still firmly stuck in her brain, like she swore to herself he would be. The two of them make their way to the kitchen and a blonde man snakes his arm around her waist. A blonde man?
"Excuse me, do you mind?" Hermione pulls away from the man, appalled expression on her face. The room goes deadly silent in a heartbeat as Draco stares at her. Petrified. Merlin, no. Please, not this.
"Hermione, it's me. Draco. Your husband." His voice is desperate as he grabs hold of her hands. This is what he was afraid of, nightmares had mocked him over this moment. But he'd never believed it would actually happen. Hermione stood perplexed, brows furrowed as she studied him. There was something about him that fascinated her, though she didn't know why.
"Harry, what is he talking about?" She turns to her best friend, yanking her hands from Draco's grip. Harry has no clue what to do as he gazes from her to the devastated blonde. If she could forget her husband she'd forget him eventually and he didn't know what he'd do when she did.
"He's your husband." Harry gives a slight nod, hand resting on Hermione's elbow. Every person in the room is holding their breath, some also holding back tears. What were they meant to do? Most of them couldn't help because she didn't remember who they were.
"Mummy!" Rose comes running in from outside, arms outstretched towards her mother. Hermione grins down at the little girl and picks her up, rubbing their noses together as they giggle. Draco stands watching them, the want to cry building in the pit of his stomach.
"See, that's Rose! Our daughter!" Draco announces loudly, pointing to the little girl in Hermione's arms. The sadness weighing him down suddenly turned into anger. How could she not remember him? He was her husband. "She's my daughter, I'm her father. You're my wife!" He refrained from yelling, knowing that wouldn't help matters.
"Draco, calm down." Fred appeared by his side, placing a hand on his shoulder. The fact Hermione remembered him gave him a strange sense of importance. Something he hadn't felt since his twin's death. Draco glanced at the Weasley, jerking out of his grip. No one spoke for a long minute, half because they were frightened to and half because they didn't know what to say. "Maybe Draco should stay here tonight. Harry, you take Hermione and Rose home." Harry nodded as Fred spoke, putting an arm on Hermione's lower back and pushing her lightly towards the door.
"No! I'll take them, they're my family!" Draco dashed forward, only to be stopped by the arms of several Weasley men. "Hermione, please! It's me, your husband!" Hermione glanced over her shoulder as he cried out to her, gripping Rose tighter to her chest. "Hermione!" His voice broke and he stopped fighting against the arms restraining him. Hermione, Rose and Harry disappeared out the door and Draco allowed himself to be pulled back against someone's chest. Molly and Arthur ushered the other guests upstairs, leaving the Weasley siblings and Draco in the kitchen. Fred held the blonde's back against his chest until all movement had ceased, then let him go. At first Draco simply stared at the door. Ginny stepped towards him, about to speak, when the blonde literally crumpled to the floor. The Weasley's glanced at each other in terror, never before had they seen such a sight. A Malfoy was having some sort of breakdown in their kitchen, none of them would have believed it if it wasn't there in front of their eyes. Draco brought his knees to his chest and rested his forehead on them, curling into a ball. Silent sobs racked his body as he shook violently, not caring who was watching. His wife had finally forgotten him, he had nothing left to live for now. Ginny cautiously moved towards him again, kneeling by his side and hesitantly placing a hand on his back. At first the blonde jumped, but didn't pull away.
"It's going to be alright, Draco." She muttered, rubbing small circles over the material of his jumper. There was no reply so she continued. "Hermione loves you, she'll remember." The quiet sound of a scoff hit their ears as Draco lifted his head to look at her. His eyes were blood shot and his nose red.
"She loves all of you, but she doesn't remember you." He stated, avoiding the other eyes staring down at him. There wasn't really an answer to that so Ginny stayed quiet. Bustling could be heard behind her as Percy began to make coffee and tea, Bill and Fleur busying themselves with clearing up the messy living room.
"Harry will look after them, then we'll go round tomorrow and sort everything out." Ginny finally spoke again, looking up at her brothers in uncertainty. Ron was sat at the table, eyes watching Draco as cogs whirred in his head. Hermione had forgotten him first, yet now she didn't remember any of his family other than Fred. He'd been envious of Draco for many things, by soon it just became the fact she remembered the blonde and not him. But now that had changed, and he didn't know how to feel.
"Here." Percy placed a mug on the table and everyone looked to Draco expectantly. He eyed it suspiciously as Ginny stood, slowly following suit and pushing off the tiled floor. She pulled a chair out for him and he sat, grabbing the mug and lifting it to his lips. The hot beverage slipped down his throat, warming his insides despite the coldness of his exterior.
"Thanks." He muttered, to the surprise of everyone in the room.
The rest of the night was quiet as Ginny and Molly hurried around to find bedding for Draco, as he'd be sleeping on the couch. This was perhaps the worse predicament of his life. Never in a million years did he think he would end up sleeping on the Weasley's couch. In that moment he wished it were him who had the Muggle illness.
Draco doesn't get any sleep that night, not that this surprised him. The couch was less than comfortable, though everyone knew that wasn't why. Molly was the first awake, which Draco guessed was probably the norm. What with all the work she still did around the house, even at her old age. Ginny was the next out of bed, she hadn't gone home due to the fact Harry was with Hermione, and her family had insisted she not go home with James alone.
"Morning." The usual sing-song tone in her voice had diminished, as she joined her mother in the kitchen. Draco grunted a reply before getting off the old and worn couch, slumping down on a chair at the kitchen table. "Here, drink this." Ginny placed a steaming mug under his nose and he stared down at it. The aroma was sweet smelling and not that of tea or coffee.
"What is it?" He crinkled his nose, leaning away slightly. Were they trying to drug him or something?
"It'll calm your nerves." The youngest Weasley stated, sitting in the chair opposite him with her own mug. "We're all drinking it." When she took a sip of her own mug Draco eyed his one more time. Once Ginny didn't collapse he came to the conclusion that it was safe to drink. It tasted like someone had mixed a bowl of fruit with toothpaste, but he swallowed it down anyway. Maybe it would help. "Harry says to be there for nine. That alright?" Ginny watched him over the rim of her mug with an overwhelming sense of sympathy. She couldn't imagine what it must have been like for him. What would she do if Harry forgot who she was? It didn't bare thinking about. Draco nodded, blonde hair falling over his eyes, which he didn't bother to brush aside.
It was precisely nine when they arrived outside Draco and Hermione's small town house. Ginny reached out a hand and tapped her knuckles against the door three times, sounds of the door unlocking filled their ears until Harry appeared. "Come in." They stepped over the threshold and Draco was sure he'd throw up. It turned out the drink they gave him hadn't worked. "Rose is in bed still." It was beginning to sound like Harry was Hermione's husband, and Draco clenched his fists tightly. The entrance hall was small and the three of them barely fit so Ginny quickly made her way into the living room. Harry hung back, turning to Draco with a look of sincerity. "She knows who you are, she knows everything now." The women's muffled voices can be heard in the next room, though what they're saying isn't clear.
"But she doesn't remember me." It was more of a statement than a question, but Harry shook his head all the same. He'd tried his best to revive lost memories in his best friend, but nothing had worked. The most saddening moment being when she saw their wedding photos, crying had ensued and Harry had concluded to end attempts there. Once Draco gathered his thoughts and straightened his shirt he gestured for Harry to go in first. With one last quivering breath, he entered the room.
Hermione was sat beside Ginny on the couch, her favourite mug in hand. She's been mid-sentence when the blonde appeared, and her mouth proceeded to snap shut. Harry gave Ginny a pointed look and she pushed off the couch, sending Hermione a reassuring smile before disappearing into the nursery with her husband. Draco felt like a teenage boy again, uncertain of himself when around the woman who ended up becoming his wife. He opened his mouth to speak but nothing came out. What exactly does one say on occasions like these? Luckily he didn't have to answer this question.
"Draco." Hermione beamed at him, patting the space next to her. It was still impossible to place him, but all the photos of them together proved she knew him. The pictures of their wedding proved he was in fact her husband. Draco hesitantly made his way towards her, shoulders tense and hands in pockets.
"Hermione." It came out a lot quieter than intended as he sat down a little way from her. He wanted nothing more than to scoop her up in his arms and just hold her, but he didn't want to scare her away.
"I love you." She scooted towards him and his eyes grew wide. Why did she have to say that? He wished nothing more than to believe her, but he didn't.
"Don't say that." Draco shook his head, chest clenching painfully. Maybe this is what people mean what they say their heart is breaking. But of course I can't be, because that is only a myth created by lost lovers.
"I know that you're my husband, and that means I must love you." Hermione took his hands in hers, guilt filling the pit of her stomach. Guilt which she could tell would never leave her. It would temporally dull when she forgot him again, but revive itself when someone showed her their wedding photos. "I love you, I do." She nodded her head firmly, pressing her lips to the back of each hand in turn. Draco's eyes fluttered closed for a minute, savouring the feel of her lips on his skin. It seemed real but he knew in reality she thought she was kissing a complete stranger. It was in this moment that Draco realised he would never stop loving her, and a single tear trickled down his cheek.
It feels like a clock is ticking over their heads, and there's nothing they can do but embrace it. There's a strange comfort in knowing at some point the clock will stop, and their suffering will end. But for now they can make the most of it. Because even though Hermione begins to forget who she is, Draco can relive their story as he tells it to her. It's a heavy burden, but a small price to pay in his opinion. A small price to pay for the woman he loves, and will continue to love till his dying day.
It feels like a clock is ticking over their heads, and there's nothing they can do but embrace it.
AN; hi guys! i took a break from Everybody Changes to bring you this. i was inspired by the klaine fic with a similar idea to this. please let me know what you think!