Author - Chibi/Warlordess
Disclaimer - Harry Potter is a product owned and copyrighted by JK Rowling. I'm just the poor, pathetic sap whose borrowing it for my own reasons.
Notes - I just wanna welcome all readers to my first ever Harmony fic! Whoo, I hope to hell that Harry and Hermione end up together, but until that happens, I'll just fancy a spot on where I can post my fics for other Harmony fans to enjoy. Lol. Woot! And now... Moving on.
Oh, yes; this fic takes place during the fifth book, before things get all dark and spooky. Say... Around chapter Thirteen, "Detention with Dolores". Just so you know.
Dedication – To Silverflare07 (or "Silvie-baby") cause I lover 'er so much. Lol. Woot! Go, lil sis!
Title - To Be Around You
"... I'm absolutely exhausted and I want to make some more hats tomorrow. Listen, you can help me if you like, it's quite fun, I'm getting better, I can do patterns and bobbles and all sorts of things now."
Harry looked into her face, which was shining with glee, and tried to look as though he was vaguely tempted by this offer.
"Er . . . No, I don't think I will, thanks," He said. "Er -- not tomorrow. I've got loads of homework to do. . . ."
And he traipsed off to the boys' stairs, leaving her looking slightly disappointed behind him.
(Quote taken from Harry Potter and the Order of the Pheonix, chapter thirteen, "Detention with Dolores", scholastic edition.)
She really should have been proud of him. Sure; he had sorely brushed her off, which wasn't something she was used to, but it had been so that he could finish his homework. So that made it the responsible decision to make, right?
Hermione huffed dejectedly as she traipsed off around the fifth floor, which, according to the notice on the Gryffindor bulletin board, was her floor to secure for the night as Prefect. Ron was somewhere on the seventh, probably on the other side of the school, and his mind was most-likely wandering to its favorite place, the kitchens below them.
But enough about Ron. Ron wasn't who was on her mind right now. Well, other than the fact that he wasn't doing a reasonable job on his rounds, most likely. No, he wasn't who troubled her at this point. He was the furthest thing from her mind compared to --
"Hermione?" Ah, yes; him.
"Harry, what are you doing out in the halls? You know that fifth years need to be back in their houses by nine o'clock... You're," she checked her watch, "Half an hour late."
"But you wouldn't mind giving a studious pupil a break, would you?" He gave her a small smile and held forward the evidence to prove his point; his schoolbag, which was currently loaded down with books, "I was just at the library, catching up on... Er... Potions. And Transfiguration. And Astronomy. And Herbology." His grin turned sheepish.
"Well, I suppose... For one night only... I'll let it go," Hermione said. Harry gave a nod of appreciation and began rushing off towards the North Tower, and the Gryffindor common room, "...But only if you walk with me for the rest of my course."
He looked back at her and, for a moment, there seemed to be a fleeting glimpse of irritation on his face, but a moment later, it had gone. At first he stood at her side silently, but then he spoke.
"Only if we don't talk about Sirius, Voldemort, O.W.L.'s, or any of the like."
"Perfect; I'd hoped to avoid those topics anyway." She could tell that her comment confused him, so she elaborated, "Well, think about it Harry, when was the last chance we had to talk about something that wasn't pitying or ruthless, or deadly? Let's chat about something meaningless for a change - how about the weather? It's very nice lately." They both glanced out the window as they passed, where the dark night sky was clear except for a few flittering clouds.
"Er... Very. Could we be a bit more productive than that?"
Hermione didn't really know what to say at this point, however. She was the classic bookworm, and friends with Harry Potter, the boy who lived. If she wasn't to talk about books, studying, Voldemort, or Sirius, what was she to speak about? Perhaps Harry had noticed that she couldn't think of another utterance, or perhaps the silence was now just deafeningly uncomfortable for him; in any case, he chose to break it.
"So, any particular reason why you need me to accompany you? I mean, I love strolling along Hogwarts late at night as much as the next rule-breaking student, but I don't suppose you have any specific interest in me..."
"Well, no, I guess not. But you're a much better social party than Ron; don't you agree? And I seem to remember the last time I requested your friendship, you blew me off. Now I don't suppose you meant to, but all I really want is to be around you, to spend time with you. Your temper has kept us from doing that much too often so far this year."
Harry halted and stood stark still, making her fall back and look at him apprehensively. His expression was one of anger, exasperation, and irritation again.
"Oh, yes, I suppose I have no reason to fuss. I mean, it's not like the greatest dark wizard of a century has been after my blood since I was born, or that I witnessed a mate of mine die last year, or that the only people who'd be able to answer my questions about what we're going to have to face later on are thousands of miles away."
Hermione gave a bothered sigh, "I thought we weren't going to talk about those things... And you're getting heated up over nothing. I'm not saying that you don't deserve to be angry and rude and abrasive. I'm just saying that you're directing your attitude at the wrong people. What did Ron and I do to deserve such things? We make mistakes, sometimes asking the wrong questions or saying the wrong things, but that doesn't mean you have to go all out on us. We're your friends and we try to understand you the best that we can, but you have to admit that you can be a bit... Complicated, to say the least."
Harry began stalking off again and Hermione followed after, taking a moment to look around for Mrs. Norris, Peeves, Filch, or any wandering students after acknowledging that hers and Harry's tones had been quite high.
She caught up to her friend, who'd slowed down considerably, and watched him nod, his glasses frames twinkling off of the firelight of the torches on the walls. Several moments passed by as they silently walked up the staircases leading to their common room, jumping over the missing steps. Every so often, she'd flash him a look and then turn away, obviously not sure if she should continue speaking.
Harry seemed to be brooding over her comments, as he wasn't opening his mouth to reply to them, and his expression was still that of a scowl.
Upon approaching The Fat Lady, he stopped short again of the portrait and turned to face Hermione.
"I... Er, I guess that I can try and work on that... You know, the problem that I seem to have. But I'm not promising anything..."
"I wouldn't ask you to. Trying is the best that any of us can hope for, right?" She gave him a small smile and patted him on the arm.
"So... You really wanted me to walk around the school with you, just because you wanted to be around me?"
"Hm... I suppose so. I can't imagine why else I'd be wanting your company so strongly."
"Really? None at all?" When she pinched him in the neck for his insinuation, he grinned widely and laughed, "Alright, alright; sorry. Nice to know that we're on the same page, then." And he took off through the portrait hole after hurriedly calling the password and waking The Fat Lady, leaving Hermione to follow cautiously after him.
"Yes; that's nice."
Notes - Woot! My first ever Harmony fic! Well, I guess that it wasn't "really" Harmony. I was mostly just trying to keep Harry and Hermione's personalities right, like how they were in the fifth book. I guess I might have tried too hard, as there was no real shipping quality in there. But I tried. And I'm bound to try again, someday. Especially after HPHBP comes out next month. Anyway, bubi!