Dramione! Our pair aren't Head Boy and Head Girl, but they are sharing living quarters, hmmm interesting….Set after DH and loosely canon, I have deviated in some places for the sake of my plot. EWE and HEA. MA rating for language and smut.

Seventh years were given the option of returning or being granted a set of Acceptable NEWTS as an alternative. Most opted for this, including Harry and Ron, who were accepted straight into auror training at the Ministry of Magic by dint of saving the world from Voldemort, the darkest wizard of all time. A handful opted to return to Hogwarts to repeat their final year, finding a haven in the familiar setting and taking comfort in escaping from the uncertainty and devastation left in the wake of the war.

Yes, this has been done before, many times. Here's my take and it's a little different…Why does Hermione visit the Malfoy's library to research dryads? And why, oh why, does her hair turn pink overnight?!

Disclaimer: everything belongs to the Supreme Queen of the Cosmos, JK Rowling. I own nothing except for the plot, a worrying amount of chocolate digestives and some rather lascivious fantasies of Draco Malfoy.

Chapter One

He sat across from the headmistress, drumming his fingers leisurely and giving the odd sigh to indicate that he had more interesting things to do than waiting to meet Hermione bloody Granger, one of the few students returning for an eighth year at Hogwarts. Professor McGonagall narrowed her eyes at him slightly, not fooled at all by Draco Malfoy's feigned indifference. Just then the door opened and a weary looking girl came in and sat down quietly.

'Good evening Miss Granger, you're a little late. I asked you to come straight to my office after the welcome feast,' the headmistress said pointedly.

'Sorry Professor, I er, had to help a couple of first year stragglers find their way to Gryffindor Tower,' she said nervously. Draco had no doubt she was lying, judging by the soft flush rapidly covering her cheeks. What could Granger possibly have been doing to warrant the lie, he wondered? Nothing very interesting he concluded, smirking. Professor McGonagall pursed her lips but decided to ignore the obvious fib. Knowing Hermione it wouldn't have been anything against school rules, she was probably just chatting to a fellow Gryffindor and lost track of time.

'Very well Miss Granger. Now, I wish to speak to you both about living arrangements for this year,' both teens stiffened a little at this. What did she mean? The castle had been rebuilt after the battle and as far as either knew neither the Slytherin dormitory nor Gryffindor Tower had been much damaged in the first place.

'The last couple of years and the last 12 months in particular have been difficult for both of you, for different reasons. War hurts us all, no matter what side we may find ourselves on.' Draco knew McGonagall was looking at him but refused to meet her eyes.

'Mr Malfoy, I am aware that the decision to return to Hogwarts was made for you by the Wizengamot when they made it a condition of your acquittal. I honestly don't know how the members of your house will react to your presence and I deem it prudent for you to avoid the Slytherin dormitories and instead stay in separate quarters.' Professor McGonagall's tone was firm but not unkind and Draco acknowledged her words with a silent nod. In truth he was relieved; he had been ignored by the other Slytherins at the welcome feast and none had sat next to him at the table. He would be glad not to have to worry about staying on his guard against possible attacks, verbal or otherwise, in the dungeon common room. Hermione risked a glance at him before looking away quickly after encountering his blank expression.

'Miss Granger,' the headmistress began, 'Hermione,' her tone softened. 'I know that you have been suffering from night terrors,' she held her hand up to forestall the girl's protests.' Molly told me how bad they are so don't even think about trying to convince me that it's only been the occasional bad dream.' Hermione closed her mouth. That was exactly what she had been about to claim.

'In addition to your emotional state there is a matter arising in the coming weeks that will be better dealt with in the relative privacy of your shared quarters with Mr Malfoy. You will have your own bedroom of course, which I think will be preferable for you this year.' The headmistress spoke slowly, as if choosing her words carefully and with a measure of uncertainty. While Hermione looked confused at this Draco didn't fail to notice how McGonagall's eyes flickered ever so briefly to the portrait of Dumbledore on the wall.

'But Headmistress, what matter is this? Why have I been told nothing before now? And why must I share with Malfoy?' Hermione cried in consternation.

'Miss Granger, I have no wish to repeat myself. I have explained the reasoning behind my decision not to place you in your house quarters this year. As for the upcoming, ah, developments, I will say no more this evening as it's getting late and approaching curfew. Come and see me tomorrow Miss Granger at 2 o'clock and I will give you what details I can. I will need to see both of you at 7 o'clock on the 18th to explain further what this will mean for you in particular Miss Granger, and also for you as her fellow roommate Mr Malfoy.' McGonagall drew the meeting to an end, she was more than ready for a gillywater and a hot bath before retiring to bed.

Malfoy was nonplussed by the whole conversation and he could see that Granger was having difficulty holding herself back from asking further questions. Urgh, was he really going to be sharing accommodation with her for the next nine months? He gave it less than 24 hours before one of them hexed the other. On the bright side, he reflected, it was better than sharing a house with Voldemort!

A/N: I'd love to hear your thoughts on this, whether good, bad or indifferent.