Disclaimer: The end is nearing, the day is almost done. Soon, very soon, there will be no more sun. But a moon will rise over the hill. And Icy will write a sequel, that she will. So be patient, enjoy the last day. And just remember, Icy doesn't own HP in any way.
Harry and Draco found out they didn't just wonder how much more they could take. They experienced it. And it wasn't very pleasant. Unlike when they'd been kids and the last few days had flown, the days with Hermione crawled.
Over the course of the week Hermione continued to wreak havoc and horror on the school (of course not intentionally.) She just had a knack for mischief just as Draco had had an accident-causing gene and Harry had had a following Ron problem.
The little demon had managed to destroy the Owlry. Which wasn't exactly her fault. Harry had taken her up with him to show her Hedwig while Draco slept in (he'd been up the whole night prior comforting Hermione after her nightmare of falling from the top of the castle).
But as luck would have it, Hermione had slipped on a large pile of owl droppings and crashed into one of the racks the owls sat on. The birds had squawked loudly in fear and taken flight, many crashing into walls in their need to escape. And as that rack toppled over, so did the one next to it, and the one next to it, etc.
And with the last rack having a huge momentum behind it, it had slammed into the wall next to the window and stone had crumbled away. And since there was no window to balance the frame, the whole section of stone had simply crumbled away and fallen to the ground below. And since that happened, the roof had no support and it caved in, dragging the back wall with it.
Harry had managed to get Hermione out of the Owlry just in time before they were both squashed. The hall to it was now blocked off and all the owls had taken to living in the coatroom off the Great Hall. It wasn't very pleasant…Filch was always handing out detentions now since he was in an incredibly bad mood. Who wouldn't be if they were always picking up owl droppings?
Lavender and Hermione had invented a new game during the week. They called it P.A.C., which stood for Pointless Annoying Chatter. The goal of it was to talk see which of their four guardians caved first. Draco had, after an hour, with the line by Lavender: "Peanuts make pickle pie with pineapple pieces playing the piano on the side. Plums and peaches place potatoes on patios to-" That's where Draco had finally lost it and had used the silencing spell on Lavender right in front of McGonagall. Two more detentions were added onto his growing list.
Last to go was Terry, who somehow managed to turn a partial deaf ear to the incessant rambling. But once Harry had dropped out of the race (on the second day during breakfast) he'd found it harder to ignore both of them. During Potions he'd finally screamed 'I GIVE UP' and was promptly issued a detention for disrupting the class.
Butterscotch was now quite docile, having been frightened into staying in Harry's room and away from Hermione. Ever since she'd covered the puppy in pads, Butterscotch was quite terrified that it'd happen again and had stayed away from his source of discomfort.
Blaise had begun to talk a little more. Little meaning that his nods turned into the word yes and his shakes turned to no's. He'd also started to join in a bit more of Lav and Mione's games…which the teenagers weren't sure was the safest thing. Thankfully it seemed that the girl's antics didn't rub off too much onto the little Slytherin and he remained calm and quiet.
Other various pranks that Hermione managed to pull on Harry and Draco consisted of setting the common room on fire (she'd accidentally pushed the rug into the fire place while she was chasing Crookshanks and had pulled it back out, not noticing the flames. The room had been filled with smoke in minutes and the three had to make a run for it. They were back to living in it again, although smoke damage and charred wood covered the place.
She and Peeves had formed an alliance for a single night and had successfully flooded the entire lower level of Hogwarts with…water balloons. Lots of water balloons. She was on Snape's death wish list for the next few days and the only reason she hadn't been killed was she'd hide behind Draco.
Draco took her flying over the week…and it didn't go so well. Both he and Harry were hoping to cure her fear of heights. Their plan backfired when Hermione fell off the broom in a dive and was in the Hospital Wing for a day being treated for a broken ankle. If anything, she was even more terrified now. And matters didn't fix themselves any when during a Charms class, a stray object Neville had gotten to fly through the air hit Hermione and sent her hurtling out the window. It wasn't far drop, but it was still a few feet.
Several good things did happen because of all of the dangerous situations Hermione managed to get herself and others into. For one, band-aids became a 'must have' item and students were always seen carrying them around.
The Weasley twin's Vanishing Capsules had also been a big hit. Whenever students saw Hermione coming, they immediately activated the powder and disappeared from sight.
The Hospital Wing was also now seen as a dangerous place instead of the safe haven everyone used to know. Because if Harry or Draco ended up in it due to one of their charge's pranks, you could bet Hermione would be there. And that wasn't a very comforting thought.
She'd also (this was her favorite prank!) managed to get her hands on some pink dye in the kitchens that the House Elves normally used for Valentine's Day cookies. And while Draco was taking a bath (yup, a bath. He'd injured his leg in flying earlier that day and felt like soaking it) she'd snuck into the bathroom and crept around Draco, who'd fallen asleep.
Dumping the bottle in, she'd been quite happy to see the water automatically turn pink and had crept just as quietly as she'd come in, out. When Harry shouted for Draco to get out of the bathroom, other people had to use it; Draco had woken up, ducked his head beneath the water to rinse it and hopped out. His screams had been heard a second later as he looked in the mirror. As it was, the dye didn't come out for two days and Draco had to live with being pink for the time.
And now, two weeks were up. It was five thirty A.M. on the morning of October seventeenth and both Harry and Draco were sitting on the couch and watching the portrait, praying McGonagall would show up soon. Very soon.
"What time did she come at when I was little?" Harry asked, suppressing a yawn.
"Around seven, I think. Maybe six-thirty. I don't really know."
Both lapsed back into silence, simply watching the clock hands move slowly around the face, wishing it would just go faster.
"It's six now," Harry said a while later. "She should be coming soon."
"Keep your voice down!" Draco hissed. "What happens if we wake her up?"
Harry switched to a whisper. "Good point. Well, it's six. I'm going to go get dressed. When I come back, you can go." Draco nodded his response and focused back on the clock. But the Transfig professor didn't show when during the time or when Draco got dressed.
"Where is she?" Draco growled softly, pacing around the common room. "Are we a day early or something?"
"No, we can't be early. We've been looking forward to this day since Hermione changed. And Mione even marked it on the calendar before she turned little…so it has to be right."
At that second the jester's voice cut through the early morning silence…the most beautiful sound Draco and Harry had ever heard. "Professor McGonagall is here. Shall I let her in?"
"Yes! Let her in!" Harry cried, jumping up and down excitedly. With a grin, Leviculus complied. The professor walked in the room, and was immediately greeted by two, very eager to get the potion, teenagers.
"We'll take that, Professor!" Draco said, swiping the red bottle from the woman's hand. "Thank you!"
"The whole school thanks you," Harry chimed.
McGonagall just nodded. "Make sure she drinks it. I trust to see you all at lunch." And the teacher left, leaving Draco and Harry with a new task: give potion to Hermione.
Both tiptoed into the child's room, where Hermione was sprawled out on her bed, her breathing even and peaceful. "You give it to her," Harry whispered. Rolling his eyes, Draco uncorked the bottle and raised to Hermione's lips, his other hand going behind her head and lifting it so she wouldn't choke. That's when Hermione made her move.
Her right foot connected solidly with Draco's jaw and she followed through with a swift punch to his stomach, before leaping to her feet and backing up against her headboard, fists raised.
"It hurts," Draco moaned, lightly touching his nose, which thankfully wasn't broken. "What you'd do that for, Hermione?"
The girl's mouth dropped. "What did I do it for? You just tried to poison me!"
"It's not poison," Harry said calmly.
"Then why were you trying to give it to me while I was sleeping?"
Draco sat up, the bottle in his hand, the potion still miraculously inside. "We know you wouldn't want to drink it, so we're giving it to you know. So drink it," he ordered, holding the bottle out for her to take.
"No," she said stubbornly. "You can't make me! I won't drink it!"
"You have to," Harry growled. "We can make you, but we don't want to."
In one swift movement, Draco had grabbed Hermione's ankle and pulled her legs out from beneath her, causing the child to hit the bed. He'd promptly scrambled up and sat on her stomach, his knees holding down her arms. Harry plugged her nose and waited her to open her mouth so he could dump the potion in.
"I'm going to have lots of bruises," Draco groaned, Hermione's feet pounding his back. "Why won't she open her mouth?"
"She's about to," Harry announced, seeing Hermione's struggles dying down as she lost oxygen. With a final shudder, the girl's mouth opened to breathe in some much needed air. That's when Harry dumped the potion in. Forcing her to swallow it, both boys sat absolutely still as the potion took effect.
Seconds later, a full grown Hermione lay sprawled out on the bed, and both boys heaved a sigh of relief. "It's over," Draco whispered.
"It's over," Harry repeated. And then, he started to laugh.
"Don't you think that position is a little…oh, I dunno, awkward?"
Draco looked down. During the time they'd been getting Hermione to drink the potion, his hands had slid down to grip her arms, bringing his face just a few inches away from hers and he'd wrapped himself around her in a very suggestive manner.
"Not funny," he muttered, carefully climbing off, a light blush tinting his cheeks. Harry smirked at seeing the reddening Slytherin, but didn't mention it. Although he did go into the corner of Hermione's room as soon as Draco left and retrieved the camera he'd hidden right before they'd tried to change Hermione back.
"More evidence," he smiled, slipping it into his pocket. "Wonder what Ginny will make of it." And then he too strolled out into the common room, where he found Draco crying. Immediately he became panicked. Why was Draco crying? Wasn't switching Hermione back a good thing?
"Umm…why are you crying?" he asked pointedly.
"Tears of happiness," Draco sniffled.
Rolling his eyes, Harry sat down next to the Slytherin. "You want to head down to breakfast? Or stay up here?"
"I'm not really hungry," Draco replied, curling back up on the couch. "Tired though. But since I already got dressed it's a waste of time going back to bed."
"I thought you could sleep no matter what," Harry teased. "During class, standing up, on a broomstick, play-"
"Okay, fine. So I can sleep. But I've never done so on a broomstick." Harry snorted. "I haven't! But I'm not even that tired…just exhausted mentally. Although it should all be fixed in a few days…right?"
"Hopefully," Harry sighed, scratching Butterscotch (who'd come out of Harry's room when he realized that a little girl was no longer in the area) behind his ears. "How do you think Mione's going to feel about all this?"
"Very embarrassed and hopefully guilty," Draco said vehemently. "After all the pain and suffering we went through, she should have to too." Harry winced internally. This part wouldn't go over well with Ginny.
"You don't mean that, do you?" he asked.
Draco only nodded his head. "Every single word."
"Never realized you hated Hermione that much," Harry said off-handedly.
Draco faltered in what he was about to say. "I don't hate her," he finally said. "And I hope she doesn't feel too bad…just a little guilty."
"Do you like her?"
The Slytherin eyed Harry strangely, although the raven haired boy kept his face innocent and curious. "As a friend…yes, I do like her then."
Harry nodded. "That's all I was asking." 'You were supposed to say you liked her the other way! Why am I doing this, Ginny? Why?'
"What's with all the Hermione questions?" Draco asked, still wary of what Harry was trying to do.
"Well…I was just wondering what you thought of her now that she's back. I mean, neither of us liked her as a kid."
"She did have her sweet moments when she was little," Draco pointed out. "I mean, she took notes on stuff Binns said. And she didn't ruin my books like I thought she was going to. And she really did like getting her hair brushed."
'YES! Oooh, must write this down before I forget!' "Hang on one sec, Draco. I forgot to brush my teeth." Harry departed off the couch, although Draco didn't notice him, since he was still listing things he'd liked about little Hermione.
Pulling a small book and a quill out of his robe pocket, Harry jotted down:
-Admits he only likes Mione as friend.
-Was actually blushing when we changed her back. Do Malfoy's blush?
-Told me little Mione did have sweet moments.
-Feels guilty wishing horrible things upon her.
Harry chewed on the feather, spitting out the bits he managed to get in his teeth. Had he missed anything? Nope…now, to go back to interviewing.
"Done talking to yourself?" the Gryffindor asked, exiting the bathroom with the book and quill tucked safely back in his robe.
"I wasn't talking to yourself. I was talking to Me, Myself, and I. There were three of us."
Harry rolled his eyes. "Sometimes I wonder if all this time with Hermione ruined your brain. I think you took one to many hits to your head."
"Ha ha, very funny," Draco said sarcastically. "What's the sudden obsession with brushing your teeth? Normally Hermione has to make you."
"I just want my breath to smell nice. Is that a problem?"
"Now who's mental?"
Harry glared but remained silent. After a few seconds though, he opened his mouth again. "I've been meaning to ask you something for a while."
"Do you remember when you had Snape baby-sit me?"
Draco looked up from Sparkles, a soft sparkle in his eyes that he quickly vanquished. "Yes."
"Why exactly did Snape have to watch me? Where'd you and Hermione go?"
Draco blushed. Harry blinked. Nope, blush was still there.
"We were on Prefect duty," the Slytherin finally said.
It was Harry's turn to raise an eyebrow. "Then why are you blushing?"
Yup, something was definitely embarrassing the Slytherin. The light pink hue became more of a pale red.
Draco knew it was pointless to lie. But he wasn't going to tell about the thing that almost happened. "We went outside…there was a storm that night. And you know how I don't like them." Harry nodded for Draco to continue. "That's basically it. We went outside, Hermione attempted to make me face them. It went okay, I guess," he said with a shrug, the red tinting now gone.
"You're not telling me something…"
"Do I have to tell you everything?" Draco snarled.
Harry hastily withdrew. "No! Of course not." Softer he said, "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to pry."
Draco ignored him, looking down at his stuffed dragon. "It was my father," he said after a few minute's silence. "It wasn't the thunder I was afraid of. It was him."
Harry patiently waited for him to continue, knowing that there were two things happening. One, Draco was telling. The more serious one it seemed. The other, most likely something embarrassing or having something to due with Hermione wasn't being mentioned.
"It was the first time he hit me. During a storm. That's why I'm afraid of them. Happy now?"
"I'm…sorry," was all Harry could think to say. On sudden impulse he added, "Do you want a hug?"
Draco managed a weak smile. "From you? I don't think so."
Harry chuckled. "I had a feeling you wouldn't. Would you take one from Hermione?"
The Gryffindor rolled his eyes but left it. He also dropped the blushing matter. Maybe Hermione would tell him later…
"Want to play a round of chess while we wait for Hermione? It'll be nice not to lose for once."
"You're a bit mistaken there," Draco said, accioing the board over from the bookshelf. "I never lose to anyone at chess."
"And I've only ever lost to Ron. Unfortunately, he's the only one who likes to play me. Hermione refuses to do either of us and I've never had the chance to play with Ginny yet."
"Then let's play, Potter."
Harry grinned. So Draco was reverting to last names? He must be really serious. "You're on, Malfoy."
Three hours later…
Two very frustrated boys were glaring at each other from across the table, their pieces in the fourth stalemate for that day. "Why can't I beat you?" Draco growled, picking up one of his pawns and chucking it at Harry's head, the small marble piece crying in alarm as it flew through the air.
The Boy-who-lived became the Boy-who-ducked and the screaming chess piece flew over his head and hit the couch. "Because I have superior skills," Harry smirked.
"Then why can't you beat me?"
Both looked up from their chess game to where the sound originated from. Hermione's door. "She's up!" Harry cried excitedly, leaping to his feet and running for the girl's bedroom. But when he tried to turn the knob, he found it locked. "She locked it."
"Aren't you observant?" Draco remarked sarcastically, making his way over to Harry. "I don't think she wants to talk to us."
"Please open the door, Hermione," Harry pleaded.
"We're not going to kill you," Draco comforted. "Just attempt to."
"He didn't mean that!" Harry consoled, kicking Draco on his shin. "We just want to see you."
But after an hour and still no response from Hermione, Draco and Harry decided on the best course of action.
"We're breaking down the door!" Harry shouted, pulling out his wand (they'd already tried just unlocking it to no avail). "We just want to make sure you're all right." Turning to Draco he said, "Ready?"
"REDUCTO!" they chorused, bright light shooting off their wands and destroying the door on impact. Both rushed in, looking wildly around for their friend. She wasn't hard to find…simply curled up on her bed with her face towards the window.
"Mione?" Harry said hesitantly, stepping into the dark room.
"Go away," she whispered, voice heavy with tears.
"Don't be like that," Draco chided. "It's not that bad."
She sat up and looked at them. Her hair was tangled and hanging limply down her back, tears still leaking from her eyes and cheeks red. "It is too that bad," she said vehemently, a spark of the old Hermione they knew entering her eyes. "The school hates me!"
"We don't hate you," Harry comforted.
Even Draco knew it wasn't time to joke. "We really don't, Hermione. And no one else does either."
"Then they're all crazy," she sniffled. "Look what I did!"
"They'll forgive you," Harry said softly, sitting down on the bed next to Hermione.
"They might…but I'm not going to forgive myself. I'm quitting Hogwarts. I'm going home."
"You couldn't help what you did when you were little. You told us you'd be bad. You gave us a warning. That's the best you could have done," Draco said. "I guess no one here means much to you at all if you're willing to just go throwing everything you've learned and everyone you've met away like trash."
Hermione opened her mouth to say something, but Draco wasn't done. "You told me that I mattered to you. Since you plan on leaving because of a few little pranks you pulled, I suddenly mean nothing? That all the time you spent with me when I was a kid meant nothing? That you didn't care at all? Because if you did care, you wouldn't hurt your friends by leaving us."
"I'm…sorry," she whispered, throwing herself at Draco, who'd also sat down on the bed. "I'm so sorry!" she sobbed, burying her head into his robes.
Harry smiled. He didn't mind one bit that Hermione had gone to Draco for comfort. His speech had even moved Harry, the boy only noticing when he couldn't see out of his glasses.
They sat like that for a few minutes, Draco's arms around Hermione and her hands grabbing onto the front of his robes, Harry on Hermione's other side and playing with her hair.
"You do matter," she said softly, removing herself from Draco's arms. "Both of you. You mean the world to me…I'm sorry for earlier. I won't quit. I'm going to stay and show them that I don't care what happened earlier! Because I'm Hermione Granger and a Gryffindor. And we don't quit!"
"That's the spirit!" Harry cheered.
"Bloody Gryffindors," Draco muttered.
Normally, Hermione would have thwacked Draco upside the head for making fun of her house. Now, she laughing, she simply leaned over and placed a kiss on his cheek, Draco's natural pallor going pink again.
"Now both of you scat, I have to get dressed." Pushing Harry out the door, Draco already making his way out, Hermione closed it, still laughing to herself.
"Why are you so red?" Harry asked, watching with interest as Draco took several calming breaths to destroy the blush.
"I'm hot," was his reply.
Harry shook his head but didn't say anything.
Minutes later, Hermione had gotten dressed, used the bathroom, brushed her teeth, and was ready to go. "You two ready?" she asked cheerily, looping arms with both of them.
"I can't believe you're acting like this," Harry said. "It's almost scary."
"I just realized that my friends won't hate me no matter what. And they'll always forgive me. I mean, after all, what could I do worse then what I did during the last two weeks?"
"Turning me into a teapot comes pretty close."
"I told you I was sorry! It was an accident. I didn't mean to real-"
"It's okay. You don't have to apologize again."
"I am going to say sorry to all the professors though. And everyone else while I'm at it. Hell, I may as well make a public announcement."
"Uh oh. She swore. Naughty Hermione," Draco said, shaking his free arm's pointer finger at her. "What did Harry and I tell you about that?"
"Bad, bad girl."
"I know I am, aren't I?"
Harry dropped behind the two of them, pretending to tie his shoe. Opening his book he wrote:
-Draco gave speech to Mione. Really worked.
-Flirting going down hall to lunch. I'm not sure they realize that's what they're doing though.
"Oy! Harry! Are you coming? How long does it take to tie a shoe?" Draco yelled down the hall. Harry looked up. His friends were almost at the end of the corridor.
"I kept getting the laces mixed up!" he defended, jumping to his feet and running to meet them.
The group reached the Great Hall together. "Ready to go in?" Harry asked, pressing the door forward.
Hermione paused, chewing on her lower lip. "Yes. Let's go." Relooping arms with Harry (she hadn't let go of Draco's, something Harry was very happy to see) Hermione pushed open the door fully and stepped in. The chatter that had been echoing off the walls ceased.
Walking proudly with her head held high, Hermione made her way to Gryffindor table, ignoring the whispers that raced around the room. Undoing her arms once she'd gotten to the bench, Hermione stood on top of it, waiting for everyone to be quiet while Harry and Draco took seats on each side, Ginny on Harry's other.
"I'd like to say…that I'm sorry," Hermione said, a sonorous charm on her voice so that she didn't have to yell. "I know that what I did was awful. I'd especially like to apologize to Professor Dumbledore, Professor McGonagall, Professor Flitwick, Madam Pomfrey, my whole Transfiguration class, my Charms class, and everyone else. Also for flooding the Potions room and ruining all of Professor Snape's things, and for the trouble I caused at the Hospital Wing. Oh! And the Owlry! I know this probably doesn't mean much, but I really am sorry for all that I did. And I admit I was the one who destroyed the library. An accident though! Thank you all for putting up with me, even when you didn't want to. And for that, I thank you and apologize."
Hermione took her seat to loud applause as well as a few whistles and catcalls. "That wasn't so hard," she smiled. "Pass the apples, Harry."
As soon as the boy had done so, Dumbledore stood up to make his own announcement.
"I would like to say this," he smiled, eyes twinkling. "As you all know this was the first time Hogwarts has hosted a Parenting Class. And it went exceedingly well, save a few minor complications. So, our new set of sixth years shall be taking part in it next year."
Ginny shrieked with excitement while Ron groaned. "Next year is going to be very long."
"And give group three a round of applause!" Tobin cried, clapping merrily along with her students as Hermione, Draco, and Harry took their seats.
They'd just finished presenting their project that had been in the making for the last week. Each camera had been deposited at Dumbledore's office where he'd had the films and pictures developed and distributed as needed.
On Group three's board, they had started with pictures of all little Draco and then moved down with events in time order. Draco had begged to be allowed to put Hermione's picture of her in a thong up, but the girl had finally threatened to burn the picture if she ever saw it and Draco had wisely kept it hidden in his room.
The last part of the presentation was a collage of pictures of all three of them at their current ages (seventeen, sixteen and sixteen) with friends and teachers during the two day breaks.
All three grinned at each other as Group four headed up. It was over.
That night, around ten, two figures met inside a deserted classroom on the second floor, their eyes glowing in the darkness.
"Did you get anything?" the smaller one asked.
"A little," the taller one replied, a smirk forming on his lips.
"Good. Anything we can use?"
"Have they admitted anything yet?"
"Even under torture?"
"I don't think we've done that yet…"
"You're no fun," the redhead pouted, sticking her tongue out at her boyfriend. "Seriously though. Anything?"
"I think so," Harry replied, handing over the journal as well as a few pictures he'd snapped. "Although he's not admitting it out right. Say…do you know what happened when they had Snape watch me? Draco got all upset when I asked."
"Not a clue. Think it was something juicy?"
"Ooooh! Maybe they kissed!"
Harry choked on his water bottle. "Do you think they did?"
"Dunno. How were they the day after?"
"Then they didn't kiss. Otherwise they would have known how the other felt and they would have been an item by now. Something else happened…"
"No idea," Ginny sighed, handing Harry back the book. "Any ideas?"
The two let out a groan of frustration in sync.
Two of their friends were in love. But they didn't want to believe it. And they would never know how the other felt unless they admitted in. Something that neither saw happening in the near future.
It looked like it was time for Harry and Ginny to step in. And they were ready to. One step at a time.
PARENTING CLASS IS DONE! OVER! NEVER TO HAVE ANOTHER CHAPTER! SQUEE?
Okay, got that out of my system. Yes, PC is over. I meant to try and get to forty chapters, but this seemed like the perfect ending. I want to thank everyone who reviewed whether it was once, twice, or all thirty-seven chapters. (Please review this one too!)
The sequel should have its first chapter posted somewhere in September or early October. For the rest of the summer, I plan on concentration on a few other fics. :nod: Please be patient for the sequel. I'm still getting some ideas down for it. Remember, it'll have more angst, drama, action, and lots more romance.
Also, I'm thinking of doing a trilogy. This was kinda implied in a previous chapter. Anyone have any guesses? The third part would be set in seventh year though (hint :P)
I hope to hear from all of you one last time. My wish is for PC to have 100 reviews per chapter on average. We're almost at that goal. And I hope to see you all at the sequel! Thank you so much for your support of this story!
And one last poll question. Who was your favorite child?
Parenting Class finished on: July 7, 2005