Ron stepped into Dumbledore's office, for the first time ever, alone. He was always with Harry or Hermione. He wondered what the headmaster actually wanted him for, if nobody else was involved. And he didn't know whether it was a good a or bad thing, either.
He looked towards the Phoenix and smiled. He could remember the time when that bird had saved them all, right down in the Chamber of Secrets. He wondered vaguely if anyone had ever been down there since. He looked across the unusual instruments and his eyes laid on Godric Gryffindor's sword lay on display.
Ah, the good times.
His eyes finally settled on the desk and surrounding chairs and gulped. By the looks of things, the atmosphere was pretty tense. He started racking his brain to see if he'd done anything wrong, then became confused when he didn't see anything as being reportable. Perhaps a few mistakes in Potions, but that wasn't enough for all of these people to be here. Was it?
He looked towards his mother and father. And why the hell were they here? In fact, why did it look like the whole flippin' Auror's team look like they'd all been squashed into Dumbledore's humble-sized office?
"Mr. Weasley," Dumbledore said, speaking sombrely. "Pear drop? Smarties?"
Ron declined and cut to the chase, curiosity taking over. "Sir...why am I here? And why are all of these people here? Oh, and hi mom and dad!"
Dumbledore regarded Ron through his half-moon spectacles and sighed. "Mr. Weasley, I think you should sit down. I have a lot of explaining to do, and actually, so do you."
Ron sat down. This could not be good.
Draco was sat beside gripping his hand, willing him to open his eyes. Madam Pomfrey had said anytime now...
He'd already alerted Harry's friends to the changes and they'd come along, too. Except from Weasley. Draco looked at Hermione in a questioning manner. Apparently she was thinking along the same lines as she just looked nonplussed and just shrugged. Draco sent her a weak smile, which she gratefully returned. Nobody else was smiling; in fact, they were fixated on Harry's eyes, as if they were dying to be the first one Harry saw as he woke up. Draco felt like slapping them silly.
After exchanging some glances with Hermione, he went back to looking at Harry. Once again, he thought of where the Weasel was...
And why he wasn't here with Harry when he was bound to wake up anytime now...
Ron looked around the room, from the accusing, the sympathetic and the few odd disbelieving looks he received after Dumbledore explained that he was the only suspect of who'd tampered with the book. Ron gaped at Dumbledore. "Y-you have to believe me...It wasn't me!"
One of the Aurors who had been giving him dirty looks throughout spoke up. "Then who was it?"
Ron glared at him. "How the hell am I supposed to know?"
"Well unless someone else comes up with some pretty conclusive evidence for you, I'm afraid it's Azkaban for you, mate."
Ron went a ghostly white. "Azkaban?" he whispered. "But I didn't do it!"
Another of the Aurors spoke up. "That's what they all say." The others nodded in agreement.
Ron looked to Dumbledore as a last resort, pleading with his eyes.
"I know you didn't do it, Mr. Weasley. I'm afraid I'm only one in few who actually believe you, however..." He looked sadly at Ron. "I'm afraid there's nothing I can do about it for now, but rest assured that I will get you back out of there, understand?"
Ron whimpered but nodded weakly as the Aurors placed a binding charm on him. "Harry...Hermione..."
"Will be informed about this terrible example of injustice," Dumbledore finished for him.
Ron looked down to the floor, beaten. He refused to look up to his parents or anyone else as he was led out of the door by about fifteen Aurors.
Molly wailed into the silence that was left behind. "My boy! He didn't do it, Albus. Did you see his face, did you?"
Dumbledore looked sympathetically to Molly and Authur, who had their arms around each other, supporting the other. "Yes, I did Molly. I did."
Everyone but him and Hermione had left after a few hours due to no progress. Draco felt like crying in frustration.
"You OK, Draco?" Hermione asked worriedly.
"Yeah..." He stopped short at her glare. "Well. No, not really."
"A bit disappointed, huh?"
Draco looked down to Harry and back to Hermione's concerned face again. "Yeah," he said softly.
"Thought so," she said. "Well, we all are. But this time I'm not leaving...This time I'm staying. Even if he doesn't open his eyes. You need some support."
He smiled gratefully. "Thanks. Oh yeah, where's Weasley."
She bit her lip anxiously. "I don't know, Draco. I just don't know. I would've thought that he would have come, but maybe he didn't get the message..."
Draco looked disbelieving but nodded along anyway out of politeness. "Yeah. Maybe."
Hermione looked back down to Harry again. "His cheeks are starting to go slightly more red than usual."
Draco had already noted this fact. "That started yesterday."
Hermione look embarrassed. "Oh." Then she looked back to Draco, straight into his eyes. "Do you love Harry? I mean...without all of the extra bits...if you get what I mean."
He didn't understand entirely, but assumed she was talking about him being a Veela. "Yeah, if you're talking about me being a Veela...The whole thing about being a Veela doesn't really do anything, it just informs you who your soul mate is. I would have ended up loving him sooner, Veela or not."
He looked back down to Harry, only to look into familiar emerald pools again. "You love me, huh?" he asked innocently, as if he'd been awake and fully alive the whole time.
Draco growled. Trust him to wake up just then.