After many weeks of being just plain lazy, I thought I might as well post something. Yes, I know I should have taken the time to update my other fics, but this idea just wouldn't leave me. Oh, well. I hope it was worth the effort. I had to fight off my lazy-ness to write this. ;) Honestly, I tried my best to make Harry and Hermione in character, but what do you think? To OOC?
And, yes. "There's No Doubt About It" is a real fairytale. It's written by H.C. Andersen. Take the time and read it some time; it's quite funny.
Enjoy! And: Read and Review, please.
Deticated to my lovly boyfriend whom I love very darely.
(Updated October 2, 2004; Just fixing up some of the grammar errrors. Thanks to my beta!)
Harry lay restlessly on his bed. It didn't matter how much he twisted or turned; he just couldn't sleep. It was almost midnight and he had lost many important hours of sleep. But fortunately for him; the next day was a Saturday, so he could rest without any problems, even in his sleep, or so he hoped.
Harry sighed before deciding that trying to sleep was fruitless. He rose silently from his bed, hoping he wouldn't wake anyone, even though the chance of him waking the rest of the boys was minimal; if they could sleep through Ron's snoring, they could sleep through an earthquake. He grabbed his glasses and slipped them onto his face before putting on his slippers, not bothering to put on his bathrobe to cover his boxers. The Dursley's hadn't been generous enough to give him anything else to sleep in.
He tiptoed all the way down to the common room. Upon reaching it he suddenly realised it wasn't empty as he assumed it would be. Hermione, in only her pyjamas, sat curled up in the couch with a book on her lap. Harry's first urge was to go back to his dormitory to get his bathrobe, but before he even had the chance, Hermione had already turned her head, spotting him.
"Harry, what are you doing up?" she asked, smiling up at him.
"I could ask you the same thing," he said, rubbing his neck tiredly. "I couldn't sleep, so I thought maybe I could, you know, think some..." he shrugged, realizing his best friend knew him well enough for him to start explaining things at her. "So, what are you doing up at this hour?"
"Same as you," Hermione replied as she patted the spot next to her for him to sit. "I couldn't sleep either, so I thought I might as well read. Lavender and Parvati threw me out the last time I tried to read inside the dorm. They complained about the light: 'Too bright for their beauty sleep'." She placed the book on the floor in front of her.
"So, what were you reading anyway?" Hermione blushed at his question.
"Fairytales. I've always loved fairytales..." She stared dreamily at the roof. "My parents used to read fairytales to me when I was little, but now they think I'm too old, and I can read them on my own..." She glanced at him worriedly. "You must think I'm so silly..."
Harry shook his head.
"No, no. I don't think you're silly,I would never think that," he paused, glancing at the book on the floor, "The Dursley's never read any fairytales to me, you know."
"You've never heard a fairytale? Not even the classics? Cinderella? Snow White?"
"No, none of them."
Hermione looked at her book.
"Well, You're welcome to borrow my book if you like," she smiled brightly. Harry smiled uneasily back at her.
"Why don't...you, you know.. read the book for me?." he asked, rubbing his neck again. Seeing her reaction, he quickly added, "If you don't mind, that is."
"Not at all." She smiled once more before rising from the couch. "Why don't you sit down... while I get a blanket?" She turned to leave. "Oh... and, nice boxers, Harry," she added with a giggle.
Harry blushed as he looked down at his black boxers. Why, oh why, had he left the dorm without his bathrobe? He seated himself comfortably on the couch, waiting for Hermione to come back.
She returned a few seconds later with a soft looking blanket in her hands. She placed the blanket on the couch and picked up her book before sitting down as well.
"Why don't you lie down, Harry? Personally, I find it more relaxing."
Harry gladly obliged, resting his head on her leg. "Is it okay if I have my head here?" he asked as he covered both himself and Hermione with the blanket. Hermione nodded as she went through the table of contents.
"What should I read to you?" She glanced at Harry. "Say a number."
He blinked, "Uh...Twenty-six."
"Oh, that's a good one. I'm going to tell you the story of 'There's No Doubt About It'." She glanced at him again. "Does that sound like a good one? Are you comfortable?"
He chuckled, "It sounds great." She smiled at him again before she began.
"That was a terrible affair!' said a hen, and in a quarter of the town, too, where it had not taken place." Hermione patted Harry on the head as she read, drawing her fingers throughout his hair thoughtfully. "'That was a terrible affair in a hen-roost. I cannot sleep alone tonight. It is a good thing that many of us sit on the roost together.' And then she told a story that made the feathers on the other hens bristle up, and the cock's comb fall. There was no doubt about it."
Hermione continued to stroke Harry as she read, both his hair and his face, calming Harry more and more, until he finally fell asleep.
Hermione looked up as she finished the tale, wondering why Harry had stopped moving, and saw his sleeping form. She smiled and carefully dropped the book back down to the floor.
"Good night, Harry." She kissed him lightly on the forehead, hoping she wouldn't wake him up. She took out her wand, raising it slightly. "Nox," she said, and all the lights around her went out.
Hermione yawned and rested on top of Harry's back. "I love you," she whispered before falling asleep.
...But if Hermione had been awake, she would have heard Harry's sleepy response. "I... love you too... Hermione."