A/N: I know I haven't updated this in foreverrrrr, but I was reading some reviews and felt that I owed it to you guys. I hope you'll forgive me and continue to keep reading. BTW, the previous chapter was written almost three years ago, so the writing style a bit different….sorry. This is kind of a 'filler' chapter to explain what happened in the last one. I promise the next will have more action.
Disclaimer: As always, I don't own Harry Potter.
Marrying Thy Enemy
Tears streamed down Hermione's face as she ran back to her room and fell on to the bed. How could he do this to her? After everything that had happened? In some distant corner of her mind, Hermione tried to make herself believe that her brain and somehow tricked her and she hadn't really seen that. The other half argued that point and told her that there was no way it was a trick and Draco hadn't really changed after all.
Wiping her eyes with the side of a sheet, Hermione decided that she was acting stupid and irrational. So what if he wanted to run off with Pansy Parkinson. That was his loss, not hers. She could feel her stomach growling and decided to make her way back to the kitchens. Hermione silently hoped that she wouldn't run into Draco on the way there. With her mood he should expect her to curse him right on the spot.
Harry was a bit worried when he noticed that Hermione wasn't sitting with the rest of the Gryffindor's at lunch, not to mention that Pansy Parkinson and Ron had walked into the Great Hall with identical smirks, not five minutes apart. Harry knew that Ron was upset about what had happened to Hermione, but he didn't think Ron was low enough to take out revenge. Harry knew that somewhere, perhaps very deep down, Ron loved Hermione enough to not be upset with her about what had happened.
Looking across the tables, Harry saw Malfoy sitting alone, until Parkinson decided to show up a drape herself on him like an unwanted disease. Harry could've laughed a little at Malfoy's look of pure outrage as he suddenly stood up and left the hall. It was then that Harry decided that whole matter was really strange. If Hermione wasn't with Harry, or Malfoy, and definitely not Ron, then where was she?
Standing up suddenly, Harry followed Malfoy into the nearly deserted entrance hall. There was no sign of Hermione out there either, not that Harry really thought there would be. Malfoy was about ten steps away from Harry when he called after him.
"Malfoy! Wait up!" Harry called, speeding up a bit so that he was next to the blonde. "Have you seen Hermione yet? I know she had an appointment today, but hasn't made it down to dinner. I thought she would be with you".
Malfoy's face looked puzzled as he tried to decipher what Harry had just said. It was clear that things weren't lining up clearly in his mind and he was just as confused, if not worse off then Harry.
"What do you mean Potter?", Malfoy asked, stopping dead in his tracks. "The little Weasel told me that you were taking her to the infirmary because I had quidditch practice tonight and couldn't make it".
"I had no idea. Hermione told me that you weren't going because of practice and that she felt like going alone. I didn't feel like messing with her hormones at the moment, so I just let her go. She should be back by now…but she's not. It makes me think that something has gone wrong, or maybe that she isn't done with her appointment. I can't see it lasting nearly two hours though."
In one swift movement, Malfoy was running down the corridor towards the infirmary, Harry trailing at his heals. It was obvious that Malfoy had no idea where she was and wasn't going to not know for much longer.
The little run to the infirmary turned out to be a dead end. There was no sign of anyone in their, not even a little first year that had fallen off his broom. Even Madam Pomfrey seemed to have vacated the area, most likely to go the Great Hall for dinner as well.
Anger was starting to creep onto Malfoy's face, along with frustration. The two boys had nearly sprinted to the hospital wing, hoping to catch Hermione as she was just walking out the door. Harry beat his fists on the wall, wondering why he had been so dumb to believe her. Hermione didn't run off without telling anyone where she was going, making Harry even more confused. This was the time when she should need her friends the most, not when she should be running off and into possible danger.
Suddenly, I thought appeared in Harry's head.
"Wait a moment", he talked out loud to himself, almost forgetting that Malfoy was there. "I remember Ron coming back into the Great Hall looking rather smug about something. I should've known he was up to something! He always is in a rush to get dinner but didn't even seem to care. Then there was Parkinson…."
"Hold on, Parkinson?" Malfoy spoke up. "As soon as she walked in she was all smiles, asking if I would still be with her if Hermione and I broke it off."
Both boys had a look of complete dread on their faces.
"You don't think…" Harry began before Malfoy ran off again, up in the direction of Gryffindor Tower.
Looking up ahead to the portrait of the fat lady, a head of bright orange quickly turned around at the sight of the two boys running up the staircase. Both were glad that they hadn't ran into any troublesome teachers, wondering why on earth they were in such a hurry to get to the Gryffindor Common Room.
Ron's face still held that smug look when the two boys appeared, but was suddenly changed when he saw that they were catching up with him, intent on not slowing down. Before Harry could stop Malfoy, the blonde was on top of the red head, beating him everywhere and anywhere he could. Malfoy seemed to have forgotten magic at that moment and was attacking Ron forcefully. It seemed that Malfoy had the upper hand and that Ron wouldn't come out of this alive.
With only a moment of hesitation, Harry quickly pulled Malfoy off his, previously, best friend. Both were breathing heavily and Ron looked worse for wear. He was suffering a rather large black eye and bleeding from his upper lip as well. Malfoy had apparently put all his feelings into those punches, and it showed.
"Malfoy, you have to stop", Harry said forcefully, still holding the Slytherin back from turning Ron into pulp. The other boy was still on the ground, though he had lifted his top half onto an elbow, the other hand wiping the blood from his mouth.
"How are we suppose to know what happened if you kill Ron first. Sorry, but I don't think he can tell us much if he's dead".
Malfoy glared at Ron, then Harry, but decided that it was true. If they were going to find Hermione and know what happened, Ron would be better to interrogate alive.
Picking up Ron by his cloak and throwing him against the nearest wall, Malfoy took out his wand and pointed it at the red heads chest. There was no way he was going to escape, what with a wand on him and Harry not far behind.
Holding him still, Malfoy spoke through clenched teeth," Now you're going to tell me everything that happened to Hermione, especially where she is right now. If you don't, you'll have made a terrible mistake. I'm not going to let Potter stop me this time…you've been warned".
Draco's head suddenly turned from facing Ron's when he heard the portrait hole open. There was no way he was going to get expelled for something the stupid Gryffindor had done. When he saw no one come out, Malfoy returned his focus to the silent Ron, until Harry called out.
Malfoy looked back quickly and saw the brunette standing there, her arms crossed and a look of complete and total disgust. Malfoy quickly let go of the bleeding Ron, who fell with a crunch onto the floor and ran over to Hermione. As soon as he got there, however, she turned her back and looked away from him, but not before Draco had seen tears welling in her eyes.
"I don't want to speak with you right now", Hermione spoke, barely above a whisper, not daring to turn back around. "I only came out her because the whole common room could hear the commotion and I wanted to make sure nothing bad was happening, but it looks like I was right. After everything you did tonight you have the will to come up here and try and find me. I swear, I never want to talk to you again".
Shock. That was the only way to describe Malfoy's, as well as Harry's looks at this statement. Neither of the boys had any idea what was going on, and there was no way they would find out from Ron, who was currently an unconscious heap on the floor. They had meant come and find her, but instead she had found them and hated them for it.
Both boys were brought out of their shock when the portrait suddenly slammed shut and Hermione disappeared. There seemed to be no way they would get to her tonight, not with Ron incapacitated and looking like she would kill Malfoy where he stood. The two silently agreed to take Ron to the hospital wing and find out exactly what had happened as soon as he woke up in the morning.