Hermione Granger walked the corridors of Hogwarts. As a Perfect she was obliged to patrol the castle once a week, along with the Head Girl, Head Boy and the other Prefects. The other Prefects weren't really up for their task is you asked her, enjoying the privileges like being out after curfew and using the beautiful bathroom, but when they were asked to do something, they were all 'too busy' all of a sudden. She, however, was very strict about performing her duties to the best of her abilities. That Head Girl badge would be hers next year!
Stupid Ron... Stupid Quidditch...
She wasn't supposed to patrol the corridors alone, but someone had snuck a few bottles of Firewhisky into the castle to celebrate their victory over Slytherin. Like usual, Ronald Weasley couldn't hold his liquor and not even a war horn could have woken him. Really, she'd tried. Right after she threw some water in his face, but it was no use. Annoyingly she'd spilled on her jumper and now she had to patrol in her shirt. Luckily it was a warm spring night.
She didn't know why, but Hermione hated patrolling alone at night. She always felt like someone was watching her from the shadows and especially tonight, every little sound made her jump and hold her wand more tightly.
"Suck it up Hermione", she muttered to herself, heading down the dungeon stairs. "Whatever he's up to, you can handle it."
Earlier that day she'd been in the library, reviewing her Arithmancy homework. Harry and Ron were talking Quidditch tactics in the Gryffindor common room along with virtually all other Gryffindors, Slytherins were most likely doing the same in their common room somewhere and Ravenclaws and Hufflepuffs were holding a swimming competition in the lake, so she'd figured the library would be nice and quiet. A few tables down Draco Malfoy and Blaise Zabini were talking softly amongst each other. She wondered what they were talking about and eyed them with suspicion. Probably something nasty, those cocky jerks. When they noticed her looking they stopped and almost simultaneously quirked an eyebrow at her. She felt her face redden and quickly turned back to her books,barely missing Malfoy's signature smirk on his lips. Not long after that, Zabini left, leaving Malfoy and her alone at the library tables. She didn't dare to look in his direction again, but she couldn't shake the feeling that he was watching her.
He always got this strange stormy look in his eyes when he looked at her. Like she was a challenge or something. And she was of course, she rivaled and bested him in every class time and again.
Stupid Malfoy... I'll figure out what you're up to.
At that point she reached the bottom of the stairs. The torches used to light up when someone reached the end of the stairs, but for some reason they didn't now. Hermione stared into the pitch black corridor and perked her ears. She couldn't hear nor see anything out of the ordinary. Quietly she whispered Lumos, effectively creating a small white light at the end of her wand. She walked over to the closest torch on her left to inspect why it wouldn't light up. She considered lighting it on fire with her wand, but decided against it. They were magical torches after all.
When she reached out her hand to touch the torch holder she heard a soft click further down the corridor. Swiftly she spun around on her heels towards the sound and killed her light with a non-verbal Nox. She stared down the corridor, but there was only darkness. When she didn't hear anything she picked up her courage and slowly walked further down, using the wall as guidance. To her right she could see alittle light now, like a candle or something. Tentatively she tiptoed closer toit until she saw it was a door opened just a crack. Carefully she pushed it open a bit further and snuck inside, closing it after herself so she couldn't be surprised from behind. Before her lay a cosy fireplace with all kinds of fancy chairs and couches around it. All were made of the same dark wood, finished with silver details and green fabrics.
"Sweet Merlin!", she gasped, "This is the Slytherin common room."
Slowly her eyes traveled over the luxurious furniture. It looked way more elegant than the Gryffindor's. The room was in a square shape with a few steps down where the couches were grouped around the fireplace to her left. Some candles were floating around much like the ones in the great hall. It looked really nice, not slimy and dreary at all like she assumed it would be.
When she was sure no one was sitting nor lying on the couches she swiftly went down the steps, walked by the fireplace and back up the steps on the other side again. In front of her stood a few tables made from the same dark wood. Behind that was a big window. She couldn't see anything on the other side of the glass but pitch black darkness. On her left she could see two closed doors, presumably leading to the girls and boys rooms. To her left stood a gigantic bookcase covering almost the entire wall, packed with books in all colours and sizes.
Hermione couldn't resist and walked towards the bookcase. Sheinspected the books on display closelyand was surprised by the wide arrange of novels and schoolbooks. She gasped when she saw what must be a special edition of her favourite book 'Hogwarts a History'. She took it out carefully and walked a few steps back towards the couches so she could have a better look in the soft glowing candlelight.