Disclaimer: All recognizable characters belong to J.K.R.

I've woken up with a stomachache. I spend the next half hour wondering what I've done the previous night.

I can't. This is, suffice to say, not an abnormal occurrence.

I get up from my bed, the stiff sheets chaff my skin. There's something about that that smudges the bit of good feeling that I had left over. Reality sucks, or so I'm told.

Leaving my nest of dried sweat and forgotten yesterdays, my feet mechanically make their way to the kitchen.

No, wait. Must make pit stop at the bathroom wherein lies the well-loved painkillers. Painkillers that will numb any physical pain. For it to do more would be a little less than miraculous.

A putrid stench greets me as I open the bathroom door. Vomit. I grimace at the sight of the multi-coloured mucus, not knowing whether or not it belongs to me. Could be Liam's. Could be Daniel's. Could belong to a complete stranger. It wouldn't be the first time. Although, there is something strangely intimate in cleaning someone else's waste.

And I do so without qualm.

That's the sort of life I lead now. Endless string of parties at night; cleaning up vomit, liquor bottles and bags of junk food in the morning.

I like it. There's pleasure in the mundane for me. For me, whose past is riddled with extravagance, power and greed... it's almost paradise. Almost.

I look at myself in the mirror. I look horrible. This fact make me smile a little. Years ago, I would have been scrambling around, casting spells, trying to restore myself to some mistaken form of perfection.

Perfection could kiss my arse. And if I played my cards right last night, she probably did.

I open the medicine cabinet and swallowing a few pills a moment later, I begin my day.

A shower. A cold one. They say cold showers in the morning can wake up the dead. They're right. It certainly woke me up.

I'm not the least bit surprised that there's only one clean towel in the bathroom. No, actually I am. I had very well anticipated there to be no clean towels whatsoever.

I shake the water out of hair and wrap the pale yellow cloth about my waist. I'm already running late, but I make no decision at moving faster.

My stomach feels much better. To breakfast then.

Side-stepping pizza boxes, beer cans and some other things that one wouldn't be able to stomach, let along describe, I reach the kitchen unscathed. Except for monstrously dirty feet.

This time, though, I'm surprised.

"Excuse me, miss?"

She turns around, her hair a frenzied waterfall about her shoulders and down her back. She looks at me and blushes.

I'm not nearly as appropriately dressed as I would have preferred. And, quite thankfully, neither is she. It might not be as revealing as a towel, but it is revealing nonetheless. She is, after all, wearing one of my dress shirts.

And that just didn't make sense.

She's staring at me with huge brown eyes, and I know she's waiting for me to say something else. I can't. I'm staring at a face I can't place, but one I know I should. She isn't some startling beauty, or an exotic temptress. Hers a face that no one would be able to forget.

And yet somehow, it felt like I had. And for that I sensed in me deep regret.

"You're wearing my shirt," I state simply while opening the refrigerator door. I scan the contents quickly. An easy task when one's fridge is in desperate need of restocking. Not that it was ever fully stocked before...

Orange juice! Drink for the gods.

"I... I'm sorry. I thought it belonged to Liam..."

Oh, Liam, eh?

I brush off her eminent apology with my hand and a small smile. "Don't worry about it," I tell her, this time searching for an unused glass. One couldn't be doing spells in front of potential Muggles. And Liam had a very odd fixation for Muggles.

Very odd indeed.

"You must be Daniel."

I look at her distractedly. And then not so distractedly.

She was really... something else. Couldn't help but wonder if she had a sister.

"What? Uh, actually..."

She smiles with the sunshine in her eyes. "I'm Hermione Granger."

Ironic the places life can take you, the people you'll meet. The most unlike places can turn your life around; make you see things that you could never expect to see in your lifetime. And some people... the ones you least expect—they can be the people who define your life.

And so it begins.

Renewing acquaintances. Forming friendships. No longer under the pretense of superiority or difference… Just two people.

That's all we were. Two people.

Author's Notes:

Short? It's just a prologue. The next chapters will be longer and in third-person POV, unless I'm requested to keep it at a first-person POV.

This is a new one. I don't know what I'm going to do with this one. I'll probably keep this as simple as possible. I'd really like for them to fall in love without all the hassle. Of course, that doesn't mean that this won't be hassle-free ^__~

I know I haven't updated Steep for the longest time. I'll be updating it any day now, though, so don't order a public flogging just yet.

PLEASE REVIEW ^__^ I want to get as much input as you can offer.