written by Halfling
Chapter one- Arrivals
Hermione stepped off the Hogwarts Express and headed towards the carriages that would carry them to Hogwarts. Still unable to see the Thestrals that pulled them, Hermione gave the fronts of the carriages a wide berth, hoping not to run into any of them.
As she worked her way through the crowd of students, she suddenly felt someone shove her from behind, and before she could stop herself, Hermione stumbled into the person in front of her, then fell over. She looked over her shoulder as she picked herself up off the ground, and noticed Malfoy standing behind her, smirking at her muddy robes.
"What's wrong with you, mudblood?" Malfoy spat at her, as she brushed the muck off while glaring at him.
"I was about to ask you the same thing, cold-blood." Hermione responded, replacing pureblood with a more fitting term.
"Nothings wrong with me." Malfoy told her with a sneer. "Except now that you've ran into me and gotten your mudblood filth everywhere, I have to go clean my robe. What a bloody nuisance you are."
"I ran into you?" Hermione asked incredulously. "Don't be a bastard."
"I couldn't be anything further away from a bastard. But you on the other hand are moving closer to bitch every day…" Draco said, looking at her with distaste. He then raised his eyebrows, sent her one last sneer, and moved away towards the carriages.
Hermione watched him go angrily. "Stupid prick." She muttered under her breath.
"Who?" Ron's voice asked from directly behind her, causing her to start slightly. Harry and Lavender were there also. Hermione shrugged and began to lead them to the carriages.
"Malfoy." She stated. "It's unbelievable that no ones killed him yet. I wish they would hurry up."
Lavender stood on tiptoes to try see Malfoy through the crowd. "He's not that bad, Hermione." She told her, having caught sight of his white blonde hair.
"Don't be ridiculous." Hermione said with a scoff. "He's worse than he ever was. People like that never improve."
Harry and Ron agreed with her as they stepped into an old carriage. It wasn't in the best condition, considering it had been used since the school first opened. It had a few dents and holes, and one of the doors was missing. Hermione frowned and wondered why the Professors hadn't just used magic to repair it, but shrugged it off as unimportant.
As they began moving towards the castle, the carriage bumped them around, and Harry had to hold onto the doorframe so he didn't fall out. Hermione noticed Ron looking at Harry mischievously. He suddenly lunged forward and grabbed Harry by the shoulders, which caused Harry to let go of the doorframe with shock and flail his arms as Ron quickly let go of him and took a step backwards. Harry lost his footing and fell out of the carriage with a startled shout.
Ron doubled over with laughter, but Hermione ran to the hole where the door should have been and looked out behind the carriage to see Harry getting up and brushing himself off.
"Ron! Now he has to walk up to the castle! He might be late for the Sorting Ceremony and the feast."
"Oh come on, Hermione. We're nearly there any-way, besides he takes life too easy. Revels in his Quidditch and doesn't enjoy simple exercise like walking, or falling out of carriages."
"Neither do you Ron." Hermione said with a smile. "Do you want me to shove you out too?"
"Nope. But I appreciate the offer."
Hermione sighed and looked at the distant figure of Harry making his way after them. "You'll be in trouble with him, you know. He won't let you get away with that for long."
Ron smiled at her. "I know, but I couldn't help myself."
The carriage bumped to a halt and the three got off and walked up the stairs to the castle. Hermione looked around the Entrance Hall and felt a sense of belonging wash over her. Hogwarts had been her home for six years now, and she was almost sad that she only had one year left here.
They walked into the Great Hall with the crowd of students and made their way over to the Gryffindor table.
"You'd better save a spot for Harry." Lavender suggested to Ron, then moved away when she saw Parvarti down the other end of the table. Ron sat down with Hermione, leaving a empty seat next to him on the other side for Harry when he got there.
"I'm hungry." Ron said, watching the empty plate in front of him. "Do we eat before or after the Sorting Ceremony?"
"After, Ron." Hermione said, though the question had been rhetorical. "Just wait."
Soon enough, Professor McGonagall moved forward and placed the sorting hat on an old wooden stool, and the Sorting Ceremony began. Half way through it, a grumpy looking Harry walked in through the doors, causing a ripple of excited whispering among the first years.
Harry made his way over to the Gryffindor table, but instead of sitting next to Ron in the seat reserved for him, he sat down next to Ginny at the other end of the table.
"I don't think he's happy with you Ron." Hermione told him. "I'd watch your back if I were you. He's probably already planning some little revenge."
Hermione smiled at Ginny who had looked over in their direction to see why Harry was sitting with her and not with them. Ginny smiled back then turned her attention to Harry who was talking to her softly.
The Sorting Ceremony continued until all first years were sitting amongst the four house tables. Dumbledore then stood up and introduced himself to the new students.
"I hope all of you have a successful year and discover many hidden talents." He said to them, his voice loud and warm. "Before you eat, I think I should tell you that Hogwarts' Head Boy for this year is Justin Flinch-Fletchley, from Hufflepuff. Our Head Girl will be Hannah Abbot, who is also from Hufflepuff." He clapped his hands together and the students joined in. "Congratulations to the both of you."
Hermione turned to face the smiling couple, clapping her congratulations. They had been dating for one and a half years and worked extremely well together.
Hermione had been quite disappointed when she found out that she hadn't received the position of Head Girl, but soon felt better when Harry pointed out that she wouldn't have as much time to study for her NEWT's if she was Head Girl.
There was suddenly an outraged yell from the Slytherin table and Hermione rolled her eyes at the expected outburst. Malfoy obviously had a problem with both Head Boy and Girl belonging to the Hufflepuff House.
"Those two are going to represent Hogwarts?" he loudly asked no one in particular. "Dumbledore is definitely losing his wits to select two Hufflepuff's. Slytherin could do anything so much better than them."
"That will do Mr. Malfoy." Dumbledore told him sternly. "I feel that these two will represent Hogwarts at its best. It's my decision and it's not negotiable."
Malfoy muttered something under his breath and turned away from Dumbledore's stare.
"Well," Dumbledore said to the entire Hall of students, the smile returning to his face. "It's time for the feast. Dig in."
The students began to talk to each other as they filled their plates with many different types of delicious foods.
"The nerve of that guy." Hermione said shaking her head over Malfoy's outburst. "Sure, a lot of people agree that choosing two Hufflepuff's was unfair. But Dumbledore always has his reasons."
"I know." Ron agreed, dishing his plate with roast chicken, potatoes, turnip, pumpkin and gravy.
"Are you going to eat all that Ron?" Hermione asked him, comparing his plate with hers, and believing that his eyes were definitely bigger than his stomach.
"Maybe not. I do have to leave room for dessert, don't I?"