"…and it's supposed to smell differently to each of us, according to what attracts us, and I can smell freshly mown grass and new parchment and---"

Stop! Hermione Jane Granger, do NOT complete that sentence under any circumstances! My mind screams at me.

You may have been able to answer the question, as usual…but stop rambling about your personal sensations when under the influence of Amortentia!

I'm so tired of berating myself, honestly…

It's not my fault that I'm attracted to Ron Weasley. Oh, who am I kidding? I was attracted to him in fourth year…by now, I'm head over heels in love with him. Thankfully, however, this attract—love for him is private, unbeknownst to my fellow Gryffindors. Oh, heavens, if they knew? I can only imagine the endless taunts and Merlin knows that else.

Not that taunts would ever alter my feelings for my best friend, of course. No, I'm hopelessly and silently spoken for. I'm beginning to wonder if there will ever be another for me; with each passing day, I become a bit more certain that there won't be.

Come to think of it, how would I have finished that sentence had I not stopped myself? Perhaps the smell of the soap he uses—the waft of springtime whenever he comes down to the common room just after a shower? Or maybe the smell of Chocolate Frogs that lingers about him on many an occasion? Or the distinct scent of his hair that I only get to be privy to when he hugs me, which is a rare occurrence? Sometimes I get a lovely whiff of it when we're in Potions and the steam from his cauldron causes it to be more prominent…at least at those times, I blame the steam from my own cauldron as the cause for my face's flush, rather than a blush brought on by that wonderful, sweet, perfect smell that is simply…Ron.

I wonder what would have happened had I completed my sentence aloud. Surely a blush of embarrassment, but…a part of me, a very small part, wishes that I HAD slipped up, that I had said what I wanted to. At least then, something would finally be thrown out there—an undeniable sign that I have feelings that go beyond friendship for Ronald Weasley. The ends could very well justify the means, for all I know. There would be an undeniable hint, recognizable by even the thickest in the room. Then maybe, just maybe, Ron and I could put a halt to this exhausting dance we've been dancing for what seems like forever.

I look over at him, laughing with Harry about goodness knows what. We're supposed to be making this horribly complicated potion, and I find myself unable to concentrate for the umpteenth time—something I also berate myself for immensely. I'm reading the directions and following them as best I can, but my mind keeps wandering back to the way Ron's hair falls over his eyes just so…

Ah, those eyes. Honestly, I could get lost in those beautiful eyes at any given moment and not be able to find my way back for an eon—and not regret it at all. Sometimes I think that his eyes are the only ones that can really see me. See past the books, the reputation of "cleverness" that precedes me, and the sheer determination to reach the goals I have set for myself. There's much more to me than that, and I know that the few close me know it but sometimes I feel that only Ron can fully understand it.

And then he goes and opens that horrific yet adorable lopsided mouth of his and says something so immensely cruel that I forget any and every decent thought I've ever had about him.

I really just don't know what to do with myself anymore. It used to be easy to hide, but these days its getting harder and harder. He makes me smile more than any other person, place or thing. He also makes me cry harder into my pillow than I ever have before. And yet, I love him. I love so many things about him that it's impossible to attempt to make a list—something I'm usually quite good at. He all just blends together into some confusing blur of perfection and I just find myself unable to think straight.

Which, again, leaves me in a very unpleasant situation when it comes to making this awful draught…why is mine still purple? And—hang on, why is Harry's the correct shade? How on Earth did he manage that!

A clockwise stir? I don't think so, sir. It says counterclockwise, and if there's one thing I can always count on, it's the textbook. But then why is his…

Ron's looks like molasses. I smile to myself. Merlin bless him, I know he tries. And look at how the steam from the cauldron is making his hair curl up a bit at the nape of his neck…I wonder if I concentrate I can get a smell of his hair again…

HERMIONE! Pay attention! As awful as it sounds, you KNOW you're in trouble if Harry is doing better than you right now! That should serve as a decent wake up call!

Well, I counter to myself, sometimes you have to just stop thinking about school for just one moment…

Excuse me? My brain shoots back. Who are you and what have you done with yourself?

For the millionth time since third year, I remember what Professor Trelawney said to me, the day she pushed me over the edge…

"…your heart is as shriveled as an old maid's, and you hide behind the books to which you so desperately cleave…"

I know I'm more than that. I do not hide myself behind my books. It's just that books are the only thing I can always depend on, no matter what. If it is typed, printed, and bound—it makes sense to me. It's truth. It's real.

Matters of the heart are never so cut and dry, as evidence by my constant confusion. How can he make me cry so? How can he turn right around and make me feel like all is right with the world, no matter what Voldemort may be up to, no matter how much danger Harry is in?

Oh, and Harry. I shudder to think at Harry's reaction to my feelings towards Ron. Would he feel jealous? Upset? Angry? I know he would be noble and outwardly be happy for us, but Harry has never been one to wear his heart on his sleeve, maybe he'd draw away from us—I don't want that to happen, I mean, what if one day Ron and I get marr—

Oh LISTEN to yourself! You can't even pluck up the courage to tell the boy—man?—how you feel and you're already picking out Ginny's bridesmaid dress!

Hm, thinking of Ginny…maybe Harry wouldn't be so put out by Ron and me. I've noticed things about him lately…like the way his face seems to light up; some light sparks in his eyes whenever she's around. And when she mentions Dean, the spark immediately dims a bit. I think they'd be perfect for each other, I always have, but I'm living proof that it takes an unspeakable amount of courage to just put those feelings out in the open…so I guess I can't blame Harry for keeping his mouth shut as well…

Time is up? TIME'S UP! CURSES! How could I have let myself get so distracted…?

Harry did the best? Oi, Hermione, you have got to stop goggling over Ron during class! You'll never make it past this term!

Ah, well, like I was telling myself earlier…sometimes matters of the heart can be worth a bit of lagging. Of course, I could have really used that Felix Felicis in my situation…

But for now, I can settle for smelling the freshly mown grass, new parchment, and every little scent associated with Ron