Chapter 11

Be great in act, as you have been in thought

William Shakespeare

'What makes sense today often not makes sense tomorrow.' The morose voice crooned melodramatically, trying his hardest to explain to her the predicament.

'Dearest Rodolphus, you cannot expect me to believe that. You are simply being ridiculous.' Harry understood exactly what he was seeing now. That pale face, without the hooded eyes, without her waxy appearance, a lifetime before he'd met her; was Bellatrix Lestrange. The growl in his throat escaped in a strangled gasp.

'My Dearest, someone is watching us. You go on, I can take care of him.' Bellatrix waited for her husband to leave before spinning around slowly, her eyes resting on Harry's face.

'Oh it's you! Silly boy, we would have loved to invite you into our home, no need to be so secretive. Let's allow Little Peter to have a seat.'

Harry's brain didn't register the name, but he walked over to greet her, nevertheless.

Bellatrix's eyes were on his face.

'Now tell me, Peter, why are you here? Did Cissy send you? You can't expect me to believe that Potter, or Lupin, or even my dearest cousin have discovered you, yet?' Bellatrix placed a hand on Harry's cheek, her curved nails cutting into his face.

'Now, Peter, who sent you?' Her voice was no longer sweet. Her cold black eyes glared at him, and she brought her face close to his. Harry realised with a pang of hopelessness that she might kill him. Her fingers were drawing blood from his face, he noticed.

'Get out Peter, before Rodolphus returns, and he kills you for the traitor you are. Spending your time, frolicking with them, when you are supposed to be finding a way to tell Sirius to make you the secret-keeper!' Bellatrix's face was murderous.

'I will kill you, you turncoat! You will die, at MY hand! As soon as you have completed your task, I will watch the light leave your eyes!'

'Harry? Harry?' A hand was poking him on the shoulder. Harry's eyes flashed open, and his eyes met Hermione's frightened ones as she studied him.

'Y-you were dreaming. Are you all right?' She placed the back of her hand to his forehead.

'You're all white!' She looked at him anxiously, still fretting even as he calmed her down.

'It was just a dream Hermione. Just a, a dream' He looked around. He was in a compartment on the Hogwarts train, sitting across from Luna Lovegood. The bags under the girl's eyes startled him. They looked almost tattooed into her skin.

'Dreams,' Luna scoffed, curling her lip as she looked at Harry. 'Fat lot of good dreaming has ever done for anyone if you ask me.' Her eyes were milky, the blue faded into the clouds of white that menaced her eyes. Harry fought to keep his mouth closed. The words spilling out of her mouth were harsh—and somberly bittersweet. The look on Hermione's face seemed to echo his feelings.

'Don't be silly Luna. You adore dreams. Your father, the Quibbler, it's all about dreams, and other nonsense—I mean, things most people don't have the courage to believe in.' Hermione's cheeks began to redden.

'No, you're right Hermione. A lot of nonsense. A lot of sodding nonsense written by a bunch of drunken fools with little idea of what they've said to the world. And my father published their articles. And look where that stroke of brilliance came to.' Luna had sucked in her cheeks, and her eyebrow was dangerously arched.

Hermione was silenced. She stood up, exiting the compartment rather hastily.

'I'm off to fetch Ron,' she stated. Harry watched her leave.

'I'd better go too Luna.' He got up. Luna's eyes never left the floor.

'Good-bye,' She said, and then as an afterthought, 'Potter.'

If there was one thing Hermione hated, it was feeling the near end of the world. Even then she laughed to herself. The end of the world? What exactly is the end of the world? Is it Armageddon, the Apocalypse, Judgment Day? Or is it when people like her, muggleborns, she meant, ceased to exist. It was a horrible feeling to not exist. It contradicted fiercely with what she thought was acceptable to think about. So she hastily stuffed those thoughts away, and focused on books. Books, books, books. She was so focused on books however that she did not notice Malfoy. She did however notice Malfoy after her initial not-noticing him, and she noticed that he did not notice the two sixth-years snogging in the compartment she was about to pass.

'Malfoy!' She called sharply over her shoulder. The blond head turned around, facing her agitatedly.

'What,' He said, his voice tinged with annoyance, 'could you possibly want now?' Hermione was humbled, if not tremendously so.

'Well, I wanted to tell you that you ought to notice such things as public displays of affection.' She said, humbly.

'Don't you think I have better things to do than notice a bunch of sixth years playing kissy face? Honestly.' He turned to leave.

'Hey, Malfoy!' Hermione called tentatively.

'What!' He practically bellowed for all to hear. Hermione took a deep breath.

'The top buttons of your shirt are undone.' She said, averting her eyes away from his pale chest.

'So?' Hermione sniffed.

'So you are exposing an indecent amount of skin in a public area. I could report you for that!' Her chin was in the air, keeping her eyes locked to the direct right of your head.

'Merlin Granger, sometimes I think you are in good need of a—well Merlin.' He groaned before buttoning the buttons on his shirt.

'A good need of a sense of humour? I've heard it before. It's very cliché.' Hermione sniffed again.

'No, not a good sense of humour, just someplace to vent. That's all. Then maybe you wouldn't be such a prick all the time.' He was mumbling, hands fumbling with the clasps on his deep grey shirt. Hermione realised, at that exact moment what he was trying to say. Someone to shout at, someone to annoy to no ends, someone to keep her from the pressures of the end of the world. He had just volunteered himself for a whole year of soppy emotions. Hermione let him walk away, feeling intensely gleeful. Draco Malfoy was in trouble.

She would torment him endlessly, even more than normal. But first, 'Myers, Levy! Stop snogging, or I shall be giving detentions!' Hermione watched the disgusted faces on the two adolescents' faces. She really did need someone to plague with her internal emotions.

Suddenly she was hit with an intensely terrifying thought. Had she just had an acceptable conversation with Draco Malfoy?

Uh, ew!

Harry Potter was holding a horcrux. Although he didn't know it, he had in the palm of his hand, the diary of Belladonna Bones. Well he knew he had the diary in the palm of his hand—just not that it was a horcrux. Of course, it makes you wonder why Harry Potter even knows what a horcrux is, before you remember that unlike normal people, Harry Potter was trying to save the world. When it seems as if your headmaster is dead, it's just kind of daunting. And if the ID bracelet that ran lazily up and down his arm isn't enough, add the fact that people had begun a routine 'forearm' checking daily routine to check for death eaters.

Yeah, he'd say the world needed some saving.

Except the ironic part of it all was, that Harry Potter was already well on his way to saving the world. If he could just have revealed the diary as a horcrux—and managed to bring the owner of it back to human existence, Harry Potter just might save the world.