A/N: Hmm…this is a story that just came into my mind while I was in my car going to my grandma's house…

Draco Malfoy and his goons stalked the halls of Hogwarts, bullying the younger students- preferably the first years, they did it worse than ever these days because they were now officially seventh years at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. They had to make sure that they would be feared and respected for always and forever.

Today, their main purpose wasn't the younger students; today it was Hermione Granger, the "filthy little mudblood." Sure, there were many other muggle-borns, but Draco Malfoy, the most feared seventh year, especially disliked Hermione. She was a know-it-all, top of the class, and that bugged the hell out of him. What's worse, she was friends with Harry Potter, another one on Draco's Hate List.

He had threatened a first year Gryffindor to see if Hermione was in the common room with no success…he bullied the little boy until he had Pansy check all the girls' bathrooms; Hermione wasn't there either. They checked some of the classrooms they knew she had, thinking she was checking her homework with the teacher before they had class. She wasn't there either.

"One more place that Granger would be in," said Draco. His steely gray eyes were slit in frustration. He had a hand in his pocket and the other was moving his blonde hair out of his eyes. On one side of him walked Pansy Parkinson. A pug face girl who dotes on Draco. On the other side was Crabbe. He had a pudding-bowl shaped haircut and long gorilla-like arms. Draco seemed to have a slightly higher opinion of him than of Goyle, because Goyle was walking behind the group. He had a short, bristly hair and arms like Crabbe. He is extremely dim.

They entered the library and searched through it. "It seems that the mudblood had other plans today," said Pansy. She sighed and shook her head. "Where in bloody Hogwarts come Granger be?"

"Out in the grounds?" suggested Crabbe. He shrugged his shoulders.

"It's worth a try," answered Pansy. She looked at Draco, waiting for his say-in.

"Okay, let's go," said Draco. He led them to outside the Hogwarts giant door and stopped in thought. "I can't believe were going through all this trouble for Granger."

"It will be rewarding though, to watch her cry in humiliation and embarrassment and inferiority," giggled Pansy. "Just thinking about it makes me excited."

"Let's go look around the lake then," said Draco. Without giving them a chance to argue (although it wouldn't matter what they said), he walked off in the direction of the lake. He rolled up the sleeves of his uniform because he was expecting Ron and Harry with her; an obvious fight was to start. But, as he turned to face the shore of the lake, he suddenly stopped walking; the other's gently colliding into him, but he didn't get angry. He cocked his head to the side. "It seems the little mudblood is all by her lonesome. We should be nice and give her company." Draco laughed and started to walk closer when he sense something was not right here.

As they got a little closer, she hadn't noticed them, which surprised the group of Slytherins. Draco was the first to notice the black envelope beside her. He noticed that Hermione was hugging her knees to her chest and that her whole body was shaking. He stopped walking and held out his arms to stop Crabbe, Pansy, and Goyle.

"Why did we stop?" asked Goyle.

"Shush! Don't you see the letter she has?" whispered Draco. He glared dangerously at the three of them. "It's as black as black can be. Meaning, she just lost someone."

"And we care because…?" asked Pansy as cold and heartless as ever.

Draco glared at her. "I am not going to mess with her or even be around her…and neither are you three."

"Since when have you been so caring and since when have you not want to torture Granger?" hissed Pansy.

"Since my mother was murdered," simply stated Draco like is wasn't a big deal at all to him. He walked off. His invisible mask that held his emotions was falling.

The others stared at him as he walked away. They blinked in disbelief. Did Malfoy just walk away like that? He did. He had spent the whole afternoon looking for her and when he had finally found her, sitting by herself at the lake, he left her alone…that wasn't the Malfoy they knew. Not at all.

"He never told us that," muttered Pansy. "I can't believe I didn't realize it! And I know why I didn't…he never shows any emotion like sadness or love, only anger and hate." She stared at his retreating back. "Why? Why are you like that?" She looked at Crabbe and Goyle, tears swelling in her eyes. "What? He can't trust us-me-with that stuff? Why is he holding in all his pain?" Pansy ran off, crying. She didn't go the way Draco did, but around the lake. She ran past Hermione who didn't even notice.

Goyle and Crabbe stared at each other and tempted to follow Draco, even though Draco has already entered the castle.

That morning, Hermione sat with Harry and Ron, laughing and talking about the school year so far. The mail post arrived and Hermione watched cheerfully as Ron opened a box of early Christmas presents from Mrs. Weasley. He passed them to Harry, Hermione, and Ginny. They each got a different colored sweatshirt and an assortment of goodies.

Hermione looked up at the swarm of owls, looking for a gift or a letter from her parents. When neither showed, she shrugged it off thinking they haven't mailed it off yet, seeing as it was Christmas Eve.

A bunch of students stayed home for the holidays because their parents thought it safer to be at Hogwarts than at home. Hermione and Ron were so determined to stay by Harry's side at all times, they had declined the requests to come home for Christmas.

"I'm going to put away my gifts, I'll be right back," said Hermione. She shrunk everything and put them in her pocket before heading up to the Gryffindor Tower. She muttered the password ('Faia') and went up to the girls' dormitory and to her bed. It wasn't until she had out everything in her trunk that she noticed a black letter on her bed.

She knew what this letter meant. She knew when could be written on it and it wasn't a good thing. She wished with all her heart that it wasn't for her. With trembling hands, Hermione reached out and grabbed the letter. She slowly sat down on her red and gold clad bed and read her name, house, and tower on it. Already, her eyes watered. She carefully opened the letter and read it, eyes becoming more watery with each word.

Ms. Granger,

We are dreadfully sorry, but your parents, Mr. and Mrs. Granger were murdered by death-eaters on You-Know-Who's orders. By wizards especially trained at investigating crime scenes, we have discovered the murderers: Bellatirx Lestrang and Lucius Malfoy. We are trying our best to find them.

Minister of Magic

Hermione ran out of the girls' dormitory, into the common room, passing Harry and Ron without a word, and ran until she got out to the lake where she collapsed, her legs wanting nothing else but rest.

"Hermione!" yelled Harry and Ron as they collapsed near her. Hermione didn't look up at them, but continued crying into the snow.

Ron picked up the letter and read it. "Oh, Hermione…" was all he could say. He couldn't think of anything to say that would make it all better.

"It hurts! I'm hurt! I can't do this anymore! I can't go on!" cried Hermione. She sobbed harder into the snow, her tears slightly melting to pure white snow.

"Hermione! You can't talk like that! Look at Harry, he hasn't given up!" protested Ron.

"This isn't the same! I grew up with my parents! I knew and loved my parents! Harry can't even remember his except for memories that aren't even his and that stupid mirror!" cried Hermione. She gasped when she realized what she had just said and looked at Harry.

Harry stared back at her in disbelief. Like it was his fault his parents were killed! Like he had a choice to either grow up with his parents or have them killed! "Come on Ron, it seems like she doesn't want us now," coldly said Harry. Ron couldn't believe the conversation they had. They never got into this big of a fight before! He couldn't believe what Hermione had said, so he chose Harry's side and left her alone.

Hermione sat up and pulled her legs to her chest and cried into her knees. That was when Draco and his gang stopped by.

Draco walked into his dormitory after seeing Hermione at the lake with the horrid black letter. Just weeks prior, he had received the same dreadful letter about his mother being murdered. He sat on his green and silver clad bed and put his head in his hands.

Since it was Christmas Break, there were no classes, so Draco went to the Room of Requirement. He wanted no one to bother him, and the room granted that wish by hiding the door. Not even someone who knew about the room would be allowed in.

Draco thought for a crackling fire, a bean bag chair, and a couple of books he might read if he was bored enough. He sat in the bean bag chair and stared into the fire, images of his mum flooding his mind. Tears started to fall slowly to the floor. Suddenly, Hermione and her black letter came to his mind. Draco wiped his eyes and stared off into the fire, but not taking in its warmth.

"I wonder if she's still out there…" said Draco to himself. "Well, I have nothing better to do…" He left the Room of Requirement and walked down the Grand Staircase. He looked at his watch and decided there was plenty of time before curfew. He reached the Entrance Hall fifteen minutes later. Walking out on the grounds, he was right. Hermione sat in the same spot all day. She wasn't freezing; she had a shield spell around her with plenty of leg space. Before her was a little blue fire.

Draco dropped himself onto the snow next to her shield and stared at the frozen lake. He didn't say anything, but waited for her to say something first…she would say anything to him.

"I'm not in the mood Malfoy," Hermione said a few moments later. "Go away."

"I know how you feel," said Draco, ignoring Hermione's command.

"How can you possibly know how I feel?" snapped Hermione. "You have no idea!"

"How do you know that?" Draco asked calmly. He looked at her glaring brown eyes with his silver calm eyes. "My mother was murdered." He sighed. "She was murdered by a death-eater…my father…" Draco closed his eyes, refusing the tears that wanted to fall so badly.

Hermione stared at him. "I…I'm sorry…I didn't know…" she muttered. She let her shield fall and made a new one to include Draco. "My parents were…murdered by two death-eaters…Lucius Malfoy…and Bellatrix Lestrange." She wasn't looking at anymore; instead, she fell back onto the grass and stared at the sky.

"Where's Potter and Weasley?"

Hermione shrugged. "I don't know. Common room I'd assume. We got into a fight earlier. I said something I shouldn't have…" She looked over at his back because he was still sitting up. "Can I ask you something?"

Draco shrugged and fell back onto the grass. "Go ahead."

"What made you come to talk to me?"

Draco stared at the clouds. Hermione thought he wasn't going to answer, so she stared back at the clouds. "I…I don't know actually…I wasn't sitting by myself, thinking of different things…that's when I remembered you and your black letter," Draco said softly. "I couldn't help, but to remember what I went through when I got my letter a couple weeks ago. It…it's not a great feeling. I also wondered if you were out here freezing…guess I was wrong…you're smarter than that."

Hermione didn't say anything for a little bit, instead she enjoyed the silence. A few minutes passed and Hermione decided to finally break the silence. "Why are we doing this? Why am I still here?"

Draco blinked in confusion and looked at her for a moment, then back at the sky. "I don't know. Aren't we supposed to hate each other? Why though? I never seen any rules that say so…and…blood…is just blood right?" Draco blinked in confusion. Was what he was taught all his life wrong? He furrowed his brows.

"We're so close…yet…so far away…" Hermione was also confused. She sat up and ran a shaky hand through her hair. She was shaking, not from the cold since she had a little fire, but because she hadn't ate anything since breakfast. She closed her eyes.

"You haven't ate all day, have you?" asked Draco. She shook her head. He sat up and reached into his pocket to see if he still had the shrunken candy and pastries he had stolen from a Hufflepuff first year. He pulled some out and put them to their original sizes with his wand. "Here." He gave her a pumpkin pastry.

Hermione took it. "Thanks." She took a bit out of it and chewed and sallowed it. "Why are doing this?"

"I'm starting to think that my whole life has been wrong," Draco watched as her face became confused. "I was always taught that muggles and wizard and purebloods were supreme."

"But, Voldemort is a half-muggle."

"Yeah, I know, but I didn't question it. I got slapped for speaking ill of him," said Draco. "Now and this morning I realized that we aren't all that different."

Hermione smiled and moved closer to him. Draco pale cheeks turned a light pink that was very visible. Hermione leaned on his shoulder, a light pink tint to her cheeks too. She intertwined her fingers with his and closed her eyes.

Draco took a deep breath to calm his nerves and closed his eyes, leaning his head on hers.

A/N: Hello, well, you obviously read the story, or you wouldn't be way down here…unless you like to read the A/N's first before the story. Anyway, um…what do you think? Should I make it into a long story? Or keep it like this? If I was to make it into a long story, then I would take out "Hermione smiled and moved closer to him…." So, please tell me what you would like me to do with it…thanks mucho!

A/N: November 20, 2005

With the help of my lovely reviewers, I'm going to keep going with this one. It's going to be great I hope. It was six saying that they wanted to go on and two said that it would be fine as it. I think you are both right. But I believe the story will be better longer.

Actually…I decided to keep the ending part that I said I was going to delete. I just got a wonderful idea, with the help of marajade64.

Okie, now I thank the reviewers.

Zarrco: Yes, you are right. Reading the friendship will be great…if my story turns out to be great. heh. Thanks for always reviewing, its greatly honored I guess….lol…that wasn't the word I was looking for, but ok.

Em: I love those situations. The ones your trapped in without control. Its great. and entertaining.

Galleena: Yeah, I hate the same stories, just rewritten some. Although, some of my less great stories do that….heh…

Fallen Flower: I know. I've only read like two stories that mention that Voldemort is a half-born…I'm glad I added that line. It really fits. It is good as a one-shot, but good as a story too…that's why I had to ask the world basically lol.

Ilovethevampireslayerandharrypotter: thanks

Lovethe only escape: agreed. Thanks for the advice!

Marajade64: yeah, thanks for the suggestion. I decided to use it. Thanks mucho! Hehehehe

Kim: Will do!

Ponee: yeah same hehehehhhhee