Title: The Forest

Author: Smenzer

Rating: PG

Pairing: Draco/Hermoine

Teaser: Draco follows the Dream Team into the Dark Forest one night and gets a surprise, but will he like the surprise? A scary story for Halloween.

Disclaimer: The characters are not mine. They belong to Rowling. This is just for fun.

Author's Note: YES, I know I should be working on my other stories and I will update them soon. It's just a habit of mine to write Halloween stories every year and so far I didn't get any up this year. This should be a one-shot.

Draco stood silently in the darkened doorway of Hogwarts, one pale hand clutching the cold stone as he peered out to watch the Dream Team. It was night, way past curfew and once again the three Gryffindors were sneaking out into the chilly autumn air. A gust of wind blew past, lifting the pale blondish-white hair off his forehead and the Slytherin shivered. The wind spoke of the upcoming winter and was a reminder that November was almost knocking on the castle door. Frost no doubt could be expected any day now. The Great Hall was already decorated with grinning Jack-o-Lanterns that floated high overhead and he was looking forward to the upcoming Halloween feast. The feasts at Hogwarts were always spectacular. It was probably the only thing that Dumbledore did right. Shoving the thought of the upcoming celebration from his mind, he pulled his cloak higher up around his neck and quickly moved from his hiding spot. Crouching low, he sped across the open gap of lawn after the other three teens. As far as he knew, this was the third night in a row that they had snuck out of the castle.

And last night they had vanished into the Dark Forest…

It almost made him think that Scarhead was up to no good. But that couldn't be, could it? Potter was Dumbledore's pet and school Hero. Heck, he was a bloody Gryffindor! He probably went around saving babies and helping old ladies across the street in his spare time. It was Slytherins that schemed and thought up dastardly plots of world conquest. But then, there had been something different about Potter since the beginning of term.

At first Draco had thought it was his imagination. Merlin knew Potter was often moody and withdrawn or he flew into violent rages. School scuttlebutt even whispered that he had smashed Dumbledore's office and had yelled at the Headmaster himself. He didn't know whether to believe that story or not; with Potter if was almost impossible to separate fact from fiction. Still, there had been something new about the Boy That Lived. And so Draco started to silently observe him in the classes they shared and every other opportunity that presented itself. Within a short time he knew he was on the right trail, but the trail to what?

And why the heck are the younger students scared of him?

That was a given fact. The First, Second and Third Years were all too happy to get out of Potter's way in both the corridors and in the Great Hall. But that wasn't the only thing the Slytherin had noticed. Scarhead also seemed more confident of himself. He now walked the school with a confident step, his head held high. He acted like he owned the place. That behavior was more common to Purebloods of high standing families, not Potter. And then there were the girls. Half the older girls in the school were not only after Potter but the Weasel as well! It was as if they had drenched themselves in some secret potion that attracted members of the opposite sex. Where had the moody, 'I'm scared of girls" Potter gone? A person couldn't change that much over the summer could they? Why, Fourth Year he couldn't even talk to a girl without tying his tongue into a knot and now he was laughing and chatting with them?

There's something seriously wrong here!

Pausing near the mouth of the long bridge that led toward Hagrid's horrible hut, Draco shivered. "Yeah, there's something wrong all right. I'm crazy for being out here, that's what's wrong!"

Why was he out here freezing his butt off when he could be tucked nice and warm in his soft bed? Another gust of wind blew past, emphasizing the point. The nearby bare tree branches knocked together loudly and the Slytherin jumped at the sound. Truth was, he didn't like it out here at night. It was darn right creepy. Trees were all right in spring, summer or even winter, but somehow in late fall they transformed into skeletal hands reaching for the sky.

Granger better appreciate this!

A frown crossed his pointed face. Draco didn't like to admit it even to himself, but he had a soft spot in his heart for the Mudblood. He always did and the summer after First Year had ended, he had practically driven his father insane by talking about her. Nonstop. Luckily, his old man had seemed oblivious to the fact that he had a crush on the Muggle-born witch. Of course, Lucius Malfoy had never expected that his son would turn the insulting word of Mudblood into an endearment.

And now Granger looked more beautiful then ever.

And she had smiled at me in class today! ME!

Not just a polite smile, but also a real smile that had lit up her brown eyes until they had sparkled with merriment. Draco had felt his heart speed up and pleasant warmth had shot throughout his body. He had secretly hoped that Granger might fall for him someday but never had really thought it might be possible. It was more likely she'd end up with either Scarhead or the Weasel, even if she deserved better. Those two didn't know how to appreciate her, not the way he could. But how could he ever talk to her when the two other boys were always around her? They practically acted like bodyguards.

Darn Potter! You better stay away from my girl!

And with Potter acting so weird … no, it wasn't good at all. Biting his lower lip in concern, Draco tilted his head and listened. The threesome's footfalls had quieted now. Most likely they had reached the other end of the bridge already and had exited onto the grass. The last thing he wanted to do was to get caught following them. Somehow he knew that would be bad and not just because Potter hated him. The teachers let the boy get away with way too much stuff. A tremble passed through his body as he remembered the time old green eyes had beat him up in front of the entire school. Out here, Potter could kill him. And worst of all, Hermoine didn't even seem to notice that there was something seriously wrong with her best friend!

She'd follow him right off a cliff no doubt…

Waiting a few more seconds to be sure, Draco stepped onto the bridge. He was thankful that his father had taught him how to move quickly and silently over various terrains. It had been Death Eater training, of course. Not all battles involved curses and wands, especially if you were in Slytherin. Moving like a cat, he soon reached the other end of the bridge and cautiously peered out. The night was overcast, but there was still enough light to see the faint silhouettes of the huge towering stones near the descending footpath. Hurrying over to one of the stones, he pressed his body against it. Icy cold seeped into his body and a violent tremble passed through him. He could practically see his own breath condensing in the air before him, thanks to a small break in the clouds overhead. Unconsciously, he tucked his slender hands up within his robe sleeves. It really was freezing out here…

There! Three dark shadows caught his eyes and like the night before they scurried towards Hagrid's hut. The first night he had spotted them by accident as he had been sneaking around the corridors at night, bored. He enjoyed matching wits with the custodians of the school. And every so often he'd scare the wits out of some wandering Hufflepuff. A faint smile appeared briefly on his lips at the thought but it quickly faded. He didn't like the thought of Granger going into the Dark Forest with Potter and the Weasel. It wasn't safe. Potter wasn't safe.

Draco's mind went back to a week ago. He had confronted Scarhead in the usual manner, making some remark. Crabbe and Goyle had been with him, of course, so he had felt safe enough. But instead of going berserk and attacking him or ignoring the remark or coming up with some snappy comeback, Potter had just stared at him. The look in those green eyes had been intense. In fact, he had never seen a gaze like that before, not even from his father. A chill had traveled down his back and it took all his willpower not to run away in fright. But that was just crazy. He certainly wasn't scared of Potter! But then something really weird had happened. Potter's upper lip had curled and Draco would swear he had heard a low growl emitting from between his enemy's lips!

After that, Potter had just walked away.

And so Draco had convinced himself the entire incident hadn't really happened. He had been staying up later with more homework, as the workload was far heavier this year. Nor had he been sleeping well for some unknown reason. He kept thinking about Granger and how lovely she looked. He wanted to ask her out but how could he with that maniac always hanging around? It had to be stress and lack of sleep…

Except now they were going into the Dark Forest!

Maybe Potter really had growled at him…

And hadn't everyone last year been saying he was crazy? Pushing himself away from the large rock, Draco carefully started down the footpath. It was difficult in the dark but luckily his feet remembered the route. He had been forced to climb up and down this very same path what must be hundreds if not thousands of times to reach his Care of Magical Creatures class. His boots were silent as he reached the bottom and hid behind one of the giant pumpkins next to Hagrid's house. The hut was dark at this hour, a sure sign that the half-giant was fast asleep.

As I should be…

And just like the two previous nights, the three dark shadows of the Gryffindors vanished into the Dark Forest.

What are they doing in there?

He had wanted to follow them last night but had chickened out. He didn't like the Forest. The encounter with that thing First Year had scared him far more than he had ever wanted to admit. Oh, he had bragged to the other Slytherins that it had been nothing, but deep inside it had scared him badly. He didn't know how Potter had stayed there. That thing could have murdered him! He had always wanted to think that Potter had been paralyzed by fear, but maybe it was the Gryffindor bravery one always heard about.

More like Gryffindor stupidity if you ask me…

But whether he liked it or not, Granger was out there somewhere with Potter, a Potter that was not himself. He could go berserk at any minute and hurt her…

You're worried about her. Admit it.

Worried about a bloody Gryffindor and a Muggle-born at that.

My Father would kill me if he ever found out….

But the truth was, he couldn't stand seeing Granger get hurt, especially not after she had smiled encouragingly at him in class. He finally felt like he had a real chance with her and he wasn't about to mess that up. No way!

But I don't want to go into the Dark Forest, either…

He could tell the teachers but that wouldn't work. He had done exactly that First Year and not only had he received Detention but matters had gotten worse with the Gryffindors. And he really didn't want to fight with Potter. In fact, he envied the three their closeness. Lately he'd even swear the three knew what the others were thinking! But that's just crazy. Still, it would be nice to be close to someone, wouldn't it? He had Crabbe and Goyle, but they weren't real friends. The two plump boys quivered in their shoes at his slightest frown and raced to do his bidding. Oh, it was nice and he certainly appreciated their abilities as thugs, but something was missing. He had wanted to be Potter's friend but the darker haired boy had snubbed him. That had hurt. No, the last thing he wanted to do was tattle on them. If he did, he was sure Hermoine would never date him. But what did that leave?

I have to go in there and get her!

Draco's gray eyes scanned the row of towering dark trees that made up the outer edge of the Dark Forest. It was just as it's name implied: dark. The twisted bare branches shook in the wind and he couldn't help quivering in fear. There were things in there. He had even seen one of them his First Year and had been lucky enough to escape with his skin still attached and in one piece. And now he was thinking of walking in there under his own free will to go get Granger?

Malfoy, you're out of your freaking mind! Potter will make mincemeat of you and if he doesn't, the other things in there will be all too glad to!

Slowly, Draco stood up. His black cloak flapped noisily in the wind. He stamped his feet in a vain effort to warm them up. His toes were pinching from the cold and his face felt frozen. Here he was sort of out in the open; the pile of pumpkins didn't really provide much shelter from the icy wind. Maybe it would be warmer in the woods?

But I can't go in there, not after last time!

Still, if he really wanted to save Granger…

The question was, was it worth it to go in there? Did he really have a chance with her or was he just kidding himself? What if she laughed in his face?

No! She wouldn't do that, not Hermoine! She's always treated me decently enough, except for that one time Third Year…

The thing with that horrible hippogriff, Buckbeak: he had planned on watching the execution and then tossing the creature's head into the Gryffindor common room and Hermoine had socked him one right in the face.

Maybe she did me a favor that day. I mean did I really want to see an execution?

He had been thirteen at the time and had thought it would be fun to watch, but now he wasn't that sure. What if it would have made him sick, the thwack of the executioner's blade hitting the neck and the sight of all the blood? It wasn't really anything to laugh at. But he had been younger then and hadn't known any better. It had sounded like a great adventure back then. How would have Crabbe and Goyle reacted to him puking at the sight of the blood? Or worse, what if he had fainted? Would they have laughed at him and finally discovered the truth about the great Draco Malfoy?

I'm a coward…

Yes he was a coward and he knew it. He tried to act brave like his father but deep inside he was trembling. It all scared him: falling off his broom, the Dark Forest, even Cornish pixies…

Draco stared at the woods before him and sighed loudly. "It's hopeless…"

How did Potter do it? How did he do all those things without quivering in his shoes? He always seemed so stupidly brave

Could it be that the great Harry Potter was scared and did it anyway because he had no choice? Was that Potter's secret?

Another cold blast of air swept past him, the fierce wind lifting his pale locks of hair off his forehead. Time was passing. If he waited here too long undecided he'd loose all chance of finding them in the forest. Worst, he could get lost in there. Besides, he didn't want to be like Neville, did he? Neville would most likely never have a girlfriend because he'd be too scared and nervous to go talk to one so he'd keep putting it off until tomorrow. Except that tomorrow would never come. No, if he wanted Granger he'd have to fight for her; go in there and face his fears head on. And he was better than Potter, wasn't he? If a half-breed mongrel like Potter could survive in there, why not him?

Draco took a deep breath of the cold night air and stalked up to the edge of the Forest. His throat felt dry from breathing the cold air and his heart thumped loudly in its chest cavity. Oddly enough, his palms felt wet. "If Potter can go in there then so can I!"

Head held high befitting a Malfoy, Draco entered the Forest. Soon black towering trees surrounded him. Pulling his wand from his robe pocket, he whispered lumos and a bright light appeared at its tip. To his dismay, the small light did little to dispel the darkness. Odd creaking sounds filled the air and he practically jumped at each one.

It's just the trees, just the trees…

Of course, there were things in the Dark Forest. That's why it was forbidden to all students. Even now nasty creatures could be following him, surrounding him, preparing to attack…

No! I must not panic! I'll find Granger and get out. Everything will be OK…

Voices floated to him from up ahead and he was relieved to recognize the Weasel. He couldn't make out the exact words, just that the red-haired boy was whining about something.

Typical. Doesn't act like a Pureblood at all!

Watching the ground so he didn't trip over exposed roots, Draco silently inched towards the voices. Pressing himself against the rough bark of an enormous tree, he peered around the trunk. Relief at actually spotting the three Gryffindors swept through him and for a few brief seconds he forgot all about the cold. The Dream Team was standing in a small clearing, although it still wasn't clear as to why they had come out here. They didn't seem to be brewing anything illegal and he doubt if they'd come this far to just talk. So what were they doing? Could Dumbledore's little angels be involved in the Dark Arts? As he watched, Hermoine took her robe off and laid it neatly on the ground.

Draco's mouth dropped open to form an O. It was bloody freezing! Why in all the world's magic was she taking her robe off?

They didn't come out here to shag, did they?

"I'll wait here." Hermoine said to the other two Gryffindors. "You hurry back when you're ready."

As if on cue, Harry and Ron disappeared deeper into the trees.

Draco's heart beat loudly in his chest and he clung to the tree's rough bark as if for dear life, not noticing the damage the tree bark was doing to his tender palms. The important thing was that Hermoine was alone!

This is my chance!

He didn't know how long Potter and the Weasel would be gone, but every second counted! He couldn't afford to waste them! Before he could chicken out, he sprinted into the clearing and stopped before the bushy-haired Gryffindor. "Hermoine! You have to come with me! There's something wrong with Potter!"

Hermoine glanced up in surprise, her hands pausing in untying her red and gold necktie. Her warm brown eyes landed on Draco and a smile appeared on her lips. 'Draco! It's so nice to see you. I've been thinking about you all day…"

"You … you have?" Draco asked, surprised. He had always hoped that she'd say something along those lines but he never really though she would. He had been mean to her and it wasn't right. "I … I know I said things in the past that I shouldn't have. I guess I have no excuse for that. It was wrong and I know it is…"

"Draco, it's all right. I knew you didn't mean anything by it since Fourth Year." Hermoine stepped closer and smiled at him.

Draco's mouth went totally dry. He couldn't believe how beautiful she was! Out here among the trees he could almost believe she was some enchanted nature spirit, maybe a tree nymph. The wind tugged at her hair and blew it to one side. Instead of the tangled rat's nest he had first thought her hair was, now it seemed to be the most amazing waterfall of shiny curls. It looked soft and he longed to run his fingers through it. Her eyes sparkled in merriment and she laughed as she dropped the striped Gryffindor tie onto the ground. He idly noted how perfect her teeth looked, white and straight; except for the slightly longish eyeteeth. Then his eyes dropped lower. With her black school robe off, she was just wearing her white shirt and a pair of jeans. He had to admit that she looked good. Who ever would have thought that she was hiding a figure under the bulky robe?

As if a spell had ended, Draco snapped out of his entrapment. "Granger, what on earth are you doing? It's freezing out here! You'll catch your death!"

"I'm fine." Hermoine reassured him. "Relax!"

"Heck no! I don't care what you say, Granger. I'm getting you out of here!" Draco dashed the short distance to her robe and picked it up. Finding the collar, he quickly placed it over her shoulders. Moving to stand in front of her, he tried to pull the black material snuggly over her shoulders and chest. "Look, I know Potter is your friend, but trust me. There's something wrong with him. Maybe You Know Who put a spell or something on him and you just didn't notice, but I don't think it's safe for you to be out here with him alone. And I think the Weasel caught it, too. They've both been acting weird."

"Trust me, I'm fine! I don't feel cold. Really!" Grinning, Hermoine closed the distance between them. Reaching out, she loosely wrapped her arms around his neck. "I've been thinking of what the Sorting Hat said that one year, haven't you? You know, about how all the Houses should come together, even our two Houses? What do you say, Draco? Do you think we could be good friends, maybe a little more than just friends?"

Draco's mouth dropped open again and his gray eyes widened. He couldn't believe this! Granger really liked him! She was almost asking him out!

"I mean, Harry has Ginny, right? And Ron always seems to have one girl or another. Sometimes I feel like an extra wheel stuck in the library while they go out on dates. Sure, I'm a bookworm but that doesn't mean I can't have fun, too, just a little fun, anyway. I mean, I don't want to ruin my reputation for being intelligent but you're smart, too. I think we would make a good couple…"

Her warm body against his chest felt good as did her arms around his neck. Yet it all felt so odd. Little warning bells started going off in his head. Maybe he was too late and Hermoine had caught whatever it was that Potter and the Weasel had…

Maybe she wants to infect me with it now!

Then another voice popped up in his head: Who cares! She loves me!

Nervously wetting his lips, Draco gazed into her eyes. In a way, he couldn't believe she was acting this way with him. He had always thought she was more reserved. "Look, Hermoine, it's obvious you're not feeling well. Let me take you back to the castle…"

"I've never felt this good before. It's like I was going through life only half-awake before and now I'm wide awake! The colors, the sounds, everything is more vibrant! It's so incredible!" Hermoine pressed herself against him, her face resting in the hollow of his neck. "You smell good."

Embarrassed at the unexpected comment, Draco felt heat rising up into his face. He wasn't exactly experienced with girls or dating yet and all this was new to him. Nor had he forgotten about Potter and Weaselby. Any minute the two would be coming back and what would happen when they found him like this? All too easily he could imagine both Gryffindors flying into a rage. They would accuse him of attacking their friend and no doubt the teachers would believe them. After all, it was the Slytherins that couldn't be trusted. That's how things always went at Hogwarts. No one would ask what the three friends had been doing out in the Dark Forest or why Hermoine had been disrobing. Sighing, he carefully positioned his scraped palms on her shoulders and gently pushed her away slightly. "Hermoine, I'm thrilled you like me. Believe me, it's like a dream come true. But we can't stay here. Any minute Potter is going to come back and when he spots me with you; he'll tear me apart. You know how he hates me."

"No he won't." Hermoine replied.

"Yes, he will!" Draco insisted, a frown appearing on his face. More time had passed than he liked. In fact, Potter could be out there watching him this very second…

"Oh, will you relax! Are you always this mistrustful?" Hermoine asked as she rolled her eyes. "Really, you can be just like Harry sometimes! You act like brothers that are squabbling over the parents' attention! Trust me, Harry's not going to harm you in any way! Nor will Ron, although he was a bit harder to convince."

"Wait, how do you know that maniac Potter won't do me anything? Do you know how many times he beat me up? This is Potter we're talking about!"

"Because he already knows you're here. He knew the moment you arrived here in the clearing…" Hermoine started to explain.

"WHAT?" Draco exclaimed, alarmed. "Is this some sort of trap? Granger, if you led me into some sort of trap…"

"No! It's not a trap! Look, will you please stop thinking like a Slytherin for a moment? We're Gryffindors, remember? We don't lay traps!"

'Well, I don't know what to think." He admitted honestly. The unforgiving wind howled past again and he shivered. Trees or no trees, it was cold out here. "Look, maybe you're not cold but I'm freezing. My feet feel like blocks of ice. If I stay out here much longer I'm going to get sick."

As if to emphasize his point, he sniffed loudly as he felt something threatening to leak out his pointed nose. Drat, he was coming down with a cold now! He could feel it building in his head and nostrils. Soon he would start to cough or sneeze no doubt. And his hands were stinging. Glancing at them, he noticed his scraped palms for the first time. Drat! How the heck did that happen?

"Draco, you're hurt!" Hermoine's eyes focused on his palms and she reached for them.

He felt her grab his hands with her own, her fingers closing around his narrow wrists. Her hands felt oddly warm. She pulled his hands closer to herself and he saw her nostrils flare slightly, as if she was taking in his scent. He had seen animals do the same thing in Care For Magical Creatures class.

But that's crazy! People can't smell each other!

Then he remembered how Potter had growled at him.

He had growled like an animal would growl…

"Umm, Granger? Can I please have my hands back?" Draco nervously asked. He didn't like the look she had in her eyes now; it made him edgy. And her fingernails … since when had they been that long and pointed?

"You don't have to be cold, you know…" Hermoine stated as she tightened her grip around his wrists. She lowered her head towards his hands but kept her eyes focused on his. "You don't have to be lonely, either. Wouldn't you like to have real friends that will stay with you through thick and thin, who will always be there? Friends who you can share your thoughts with and feel them?"

"Granger … Hermoine …" Draco watched as her pink little tongue poked out from between her lips. Her intentions suddenly became crystal clear: she wanted to lick his scraped palms as if she were a dog or something! Panic bubbled within him and he didn't know what he should do. A part of him wanted to run helter-skelter back to the castle all the way to his bed, yet another part of him longed for what she had offered. He could finally have what he had always wanted: be friends with Potter and date Hermoine.

Yeah, but at what cost? She isn't acting exactly normal here…

Ha! That was the understatement of the century!

And then his eyes happened to move past her shoulder and what he saw there almost stopped his heart.

A pair of blood red eyes was staring right at him!

Ice ran through his veins and his entire body started to shake in fear. Some horrible beast had found them! "Hermoine! We … we have to get out of here!"

The bushy-haired Gryffindor glanced over her shoulder at the pair of red eyes and turned to regard him again, a smile on her lips. "Oh, don't mind him. That's just Harry."


"See, over the summer this odd dog creature bit him and well, he changes now…" Hermoine explained matter-of-factly as she continued to cling to his wrists. "Now please don't be scared! He won't hurt you! Really!"

The pair of red eyes moved closer and Draco swallowed the lump in his throat. Potter, if that's who it really was, was ugly! The creature looked like a misshapen dog with an extra large head. It moved on all four and it was BIG. But the thing that Draco noticed the most was the long jaw with all the sharp teeth…


"No, of course not!" Hermoine quickly replied, her grip tighter than ever. "Professor Lupin was a werewolf and I assure you he didn't look anything like this! He stood upright and well, he just looked different! I read all about werewolves and none of the books mentioned the telepathy that seems to go along with this form…"

"What? Lupin was a werewolf, too? What the heck is going on at this school?" Draco screamed, clearly upset. He frantically scanned the woods around the small clearing. He had to get away before they ate him! And then he spotted a second ugly thing sitting there watching him, the Weasel no doubt.

Great! I'm surrounded by werewolves! I just knew I shouldn't have come out here, Granger or no Granger!

What should he do? What could he do? They were everywhere! He couldn't fight them all and Potter always won, didn't he? Yeah, even against bloody Voldemort! And Hermoine, she was one, too. That was why she had started to undress; so she could change into one of the ugly beasts! Frantically he tried to remember what he had read about werewolves in Defense Against the Dark Arts in Third Year. The moon…

Draco glanced upward and realized there wasn't a full moon in the sky anywhere to be seen. His eyes dropped back to Hermoine, confusion clear on his pale face. "But there isn't a moon…"

"There apparently doesn't have to be one. We didn't exactly figure that out yet…" Hermoine admitted sheepishly. It apparently bothered her that she didn't know everything. "But don't worry, it won't hurt…"

His gray eyes grew wide with fright.

She wanted to make him into a werewolf!

"I was shocked, too, when Harry first told me." Hermoine admitted as she stepped close once again, her arms going around his neck.

Heat from her body seeped through his clothes and slowly started to warm him. After freezing, any heat felt delicious. And she still was beautiful. Draco knew he should get out of there, but if he started to run would he be chased? He remembered reading somewhere that if a person ran from a wild animal that it triggered the prey response; that is, the animal mistook the running person for prey. And at the moment, Potter and the Weasel looked very animal like. Besides, his feet appeared rooted to the ground and he couldn't move.

"But it's not really all that bad." Hermoine continued gently as she snuggled against him. "You'll get stronger physically. That's an advantage. Plus we're connected mentally, you know. We can actually think at each other. That's really great and all, but I've been thinking I want a mate. You know, someone I can really bond with…"

A mate…

Clinging to his shoulders, Hermoine pushed herself up on her tiptoes and kissed him. Her lips were soft and warm. And before he knew it, he was kissing her back eagerly.

I'm kissing with a werewolf!

And he answered himself once again: who cares?

But she'll turn you into a werewolf! And is that a bad thing?

Reaching for her, Draco took her into his arms. Running out of air, he pulled back slightly so he could breath. He wasn't exactly too sure what kind of werewolf she was or even if there were different types, but she certainly could kiss! Besides, hadn't he wanted her since sometime during their First Year? Why should he let a little lycanthrope get in his way? Besides, it was the perfect excuse for his father!

I'm sorry, Father, but you see I have to marry the Mudblood. We're mentally bonded and there's nothing you can do about it. Oh, I'm a werewolf now. Please be sure to tell Mother, will you?

Of course, his father would throw some fit but maybe Potter could bite him or something…

And was it really any different than how Voldemort marked his Death Eaters? Maybe this was how Potter marked his followers or his inner circle at any rate. Potter's inner circle of werewolves.. ha! It sounded crazy!

And he really didn't want to grow up to be a Death Eater, did he? Voldemort would expect him to kill people and he really didn't like that idea. In fact, he didn't think he had the guts to do that…

"You … you don't eat people, do you?"

"No, of course not!" Hermoine reassured him. "We just mainly run around out here near the edge of the forest. Well, maybe it did change us a little. We all feel more self-confident and stuff like that. And it made me feel brave enough to admit I like you…"

"And how would I…?" Draco asked nervously, sure it required something very painful.

"We just need to exchange a bit of blood." Hermoine explained. She removed her hands from around his neck. Holding one of her palms flat, she scratched herself with a sharp claw-like fingernail on her other hand. Instantly red blood welled up to the surface. "Once we do that, you'll slowly start to change. Oh, and don't be alarmed if you start to grow a bit of hair in odd places … or a tail."

"A tail?" Draco asked, shocked. His eyes dropped down to her hips. "Do you have a tail? I mean, you still look human…"

"Yes, I have a tail." She admitted, her face turning red from embarrassment. Still, she had felt it was her duty to inform him. "I understand if you want to think about it…"

"And if I do this, we'll be mentally connected?" Draco asked, intrigued. It actually sounded fascinating. And like she had told him earlier, he would have true friends that would share their thoughts with him. Best of all, he'd have Hermoine as his mate. No one would be able to steal her from him, either. That was clear. Wolves mated for life and he suspected that these werewolves did as well, whatever they were.

Do I really even need to think about it?

Boldly, Draco held out his hand, palm side up. "Go ahead."

"Are you sure?" Hermoine asked, her brown eyes scanning his face.

"What? You think I'm going to give some other guy the chance to steal you away from me? Granger, when are you going to understand that you're mine?"

Holding her sharp claw over his palm, she cut him with it. "Now we just need to put our hands together…"

Draco flinched slightly as he felt her claw slice through his skin, but it was more a reflex action. Besides, he was a coward after all and he wondered idly if he'd get braver from her Gryffindor blood. He watched the red blood seep up onto his hand for a moment. His heart pounding wildly within his chest, he pressed his cut against hers and interlocked their fingers. At first he felt nothing but the wetness between their hands. Then a slight tingle started in his hand and spread up his arm into the rest of his body. He felt euphoric, as if he could do anything. And just like magic, suddenly he wasn't cold anymore… And then something even more amazing happened: their minds went together. It was the most wonderful thing he had ever felt or experienced. It was like pure joy, but a joy that would last on and on until the end of his days. He could actually feel Hermoine! He could feel her feelings as if they were his own and she felt the same joy that he did!


/Yes, Draco/

/I love you, my little Mudblood./


Well, I hope you enjoyed this little supernatural werewolf romance! And yes, they're different than the type of werewolf Lupin is. Happy Halloween!