Hey, a one-shot. Yippee. I walked into the kitchen while my mom was watching movie four. It was right at this part on the Yule Ball scene (my least favorite scene, by the way). I figured our Harry wouldn't leave Hermione crying like that. Here's what I think should have happened. Stuff in italics is from the movie.
"Well, you know the solution, then, don't you?" Hermione asked, looking close to tears.
"Yeah?" Ron asked. "What's that?"
"Next time there's a ball, pluck up the courage and ask me first, and not as a last resort!" Hermione said, walking away; she spotted Harry, who had been watching the scene in confusion.
"Where've you been?" Hermione asked him angrily. Harry started to speak, but she interrupted. "Never mind, off to bed, both of you!"
Harry bemusedly followed Ron, looking at him questioningly. Ron scoffed.
"They get scary when they get older," he said.
"Ron, you've spoiled everything!" Hermione yelled, stalking after him. Harry followed Ron up the steps.
The sound of sobbing met his ears. Ron was already gone, being pissy somewhere else. He turned and saw Hermione crying on the stairs, all alone, staring at her beautiful dress. His heart constricted at the sight.
"Hermione?" he asked tentatively, walking towards her. Hermione looked at him quickly and wiped her eyes.
"I thought I told you to go to bed," she said, looking back at her discarded shoes. "Blasted shoes," she muttered. "Three sizes too small, I swear."
Harry smiled wanly and went to sit beside her. "Well, Hermione, seeing as, until next year when you get your Prefect's badge, you have no authority to send me to bed, I think I'll stay here."
"Who says I'm getting Prefect next year?" Hermione said, looking at him. "It's not a sure thing, you know."
Harry laughed. "Hermione, everyone knows you're going to get the badge. But that's not why I'm here," he said, becoming serious. "Are you okay?" He winced as soon as he asked this. Of course she wasn't okay, she was crying on a stairway. "Stupid question," he said. "Anything I can do to make it better?"
Hermione smiled at his concern. "Well, unless you can give a foot rub…." She trailed off, shrugging. Harry grinned and went down a couple steps so he could take one of her feet in his lap. Hermione giggled slightly as he started rubbing it, taking care on the reddish spots where her shoe's straps had cut into her foot.
"Sorry," she said as her foot twitched. "I'm kind of ticklish."
Harry chuckled, turning his attention to a different part of her foot. "Sorry about Ron," he said soon. "He's just…a thickhead sometimes."
Hermione sighed. "Tell me about it. He can be so insensitive with his friends."
"I know that side of him," Harry muttered. Hermione giggled. "I'm guessing you were waiting for him to ask you to the ball?" Harry asked, looking up at her and taking her other foot into his lap.
"Yes," Hermione said, sighing again. "Really, I just wanted him to realize that I was a girl. He's harping on about how he doesn't have a date, and here I am, right in front of him, waiting to be asked. I would've said yes in an instant, but Viktor beat him to the punch."
"Well, at least he knows you're a girl," Harry said, trying to get her to see the good side of this. Hermione laughed humorlessly.
"Took him bloody long enough," she muttered. "I really don't know if I feel that way after tonight. If this is any indication of what a relationship will be like with him, I probably won't be able to talk to you without him getting insanely jealous."
Harry shrugged. He could definitely imagine that. Wouldn't be the first time he got jealous of Harry. "So…you don't like him now?"
Hermione shook her head. "No, I don't. I mean, he left me crying on a stairway, for Merlin's sake! If you didn't come back for me, I'd probably still be feeling miserable here—" She cut herself off and Harry looked up.
"What's wrong?" he asked, startled at her abrupt silence. Hermione was looking into the distance, seemingly in thought.
"Harry," she asked softly. "In first year, when you and Ron went after me at Halloween, whose idea was that?"
"Mine," Harry said. "I was worried about you. Ron was too."
"Yeah," Hermione said, probably not listening to him. "And…in second year, you found the paper in my hand. You were holding it weren't you? My hand, I mean."
"Yeah," Harry said, confused. "Where are you going—?"
"Hang on," Hermione said. "When I was unPetrified, and I came into the Great Hall, you were the first one I looked for. You were the one I ran up toand hugged, not Ron. I just shook his hand. Rather awkwardly, at that."
"Yeah," Harry said, "well…." He just couldn't think of why that was.
"Third year, on the train, when that dementor came in, after you woke up. Who was the first person you saw?"
"You," Harry said. "You were kneeling right next to me."
"And later on," Hermione said, "when you found out that Sirius supposedly betrayed your parents. You were crying in the clearing…I approached you, right?"
"Yeah," Harry said. "Hermione, where are you going with this?"
"Hold on, Harry," Hermione said. "I think I'm having an epiphany here. When we went through all of that business with the Time-Turner. Just the two of us. We didn't tell Ron right away. It was just our secret for a while. And, just this year, when Ron didn't believe you about the Goblet of Fire. I did."
"Yeah," Harry said, very confused. "Which I'm glad for, 'cause you taught me the Summoning Charm."
"I did," Hermione said, her brow knitted. Harry smiled in spite of his confusion. He like that thinking look of hers. "And I hugged you before the match. If that foul Skeeter woman hadn't burst in, I think I would've just kept holding on. I was so terrified for you. Even more than when Ron was taken away by Sirius in his dog form."
"Yeah, well a dragon is considerably more dangerous than a dog," Harry said fairly.
"Still," Hermione said. "I don't think I've been happier than when I saw you flying back on your Firebolt in the First Task. I cheered so loud my vocal cords about tore."
Harry laughed. "Kind of like during Quidditch," he said. "I can usually make out your voice among all the others when I'm flying near you."
"Yeah, you can," Hermione said ponderously. Then she clapped her hand to her forehead. "Harry, I've been such a dolt."
"Why?" Harry asked. Hermione took her feet from his lap (Harry had long stopped rubbing them) and went to sit next to him. She looked him in the eyes with her bright brown ones.
"It's always been you, Harry," she said softly. "I don't think I've ever hugged Ron like I hug you. I just kind of cuddled him when Buckbeak was supposedly executed. I full on bear hug you. You're always the one to think of me. Wasn't it you that thought of the excuse to see me in the hospital wing in second year when you were caught by McGonagall?"
"Yeah," Harry said, realization dawning on him. "Yeah, it was. Hermione…why is that?"
Hermione smiled. "Harry…it's…well, I think it's love."
Harry blinked, then blinked again. Love? Was he in love with Hermione? Hehad felta slight twinge of jealousy when he saw Hermione and Krum dancing. At the time, he had just chalked it up to the fact that they were having fun when he was moping about Cho. Cho…what about her?
"Hermione…how exactly do you know you're in love?" Harry asked. Hermione smiled gently at him and hugged him, understanding that he wouldn't know a lot about the subject.
"I don't exactly know, Harry," she said. "I think…you can't imagine life without them. You would go through hell and back just to see them and make sure they're okay. You don't really care about yourself when they're health and well-being comes in to question, because it's worth any amount of pain and punishment just for them. When they're around, you don't feel like you have to put up a façade. You can just be yourself…and that's okay. When, you look at them, and you know they're the one you love," she looked Harry in the eyes and place a hand on her chest, "your heart beats faster, but time seems to slow down. You feel like the only two people in existence are you and them."
Harry stared at Hermione as if only just seeing her. He was aware of just how…feminine she was. Her long, soft brown hair, her bright brown eyes, her…her body. Harry felt rise in his face and realized he had been staring at Hermione's body. He looked away, down at his feet. He heard Hermione giggle.
"Caught on as well, have you?" she asked in mock sternness, then turned serious. "Harry, look at me."
Harry looked up at Hermione's face. She was smiling. "Harry, what are you feeling right now?"
Harry gulped. Racing heart, blissful ignorance to the world around him….
"Never mind," Hermione giggled. "My inarticulate Harry."
The next thing Harry felt was a pair of soft lips pressed against his own. Hermione was kissing him! Hermione was kissing him! And he was bloody enjoying it. He got over his initial shock and began to return the kiss. It was chaste, soft, and searching; testing the waters. They separated, both grinning.
"Hermione," Harry said hoarsely. "I think I love you."
Hermione giggled. "Well, I know I love you, Harry. I think I always have."
"Yeah, likewise," Harry said, still reeling slightly from the fact that his first kiss had been with his best friend. "You think…we could do that again?"
Hermione smiled. "I think so."
Harry leaned in this time and they kissed again, this one a little more heated than the last. Harry cupped Hermione's cheek in one hand, putting the other on the back of her neck, and deepened the kiss. Hermione moaned pleasantly, encouraging Harry to run his tongue along her lip. Hermione eagerly parted her lips, and Harry ravaged her mouth with his tongue. Soon, desperate for air, they broke apart, gasping.
"Wow," Hermione said, feeling her lips. "That was fantastic, Harry."
"Ditto," Harry said, his own lips tender and slightly swollen. "So…what about Krum? Aren't you two…?"
"No," Hermione said, shaking her head. "Viktor and I only came as friends. I just figured Ron would assume the worst and realize what he felt for me. Now, of course, I don't really care. I have my Harry now."
Harry laughed, then stood up, offering Hermione her hand. "May I have this dance, Hermione?"
Hermione smiled, pulling her shoes on and taking Harry's hand. "I'm going to require another foot rub when we're done, but okay. I'd love to."
They walked into the Great Hall, passing a beaming Neville and Ginny. Harry clapped Neville on the shoulder, giving him a grin. Neville flashed Harry a thumbs-up. Harry and Hermione danced the rest of the night, leaving past midnight with Neville and Ginny. As they walked up to the common room, Hermione voiced the question Harry had been dreading the answer to all night.
"What about Ron?"
Harry shook his head. "We'll cross that bridge when we come to it."
As Harry went to bed that night, Ron's snores permeated throughout the room. Harry listened to them as he lay awake. He was in for an earful tomorrow. Tonight, though, he realized he would never be able to walk up that stairwell without thinking of his Hermione.
Well? Corny? Sappy? Fluffy? Give me a review and tell me, please! This is a one shot unless you think it should continue. I can't guarantee that I'll continue if asked.
And a disclaimer as well: I do not own Harry Potter, or any of its characters, nor do I own the movie or any rights to it. Yeah….
And, for those of you wondering about the sequel to Chamber of Secrets: With a Twist, fear not. The Prisoner of Azkaban: With a Twist is in the works. I want to get a decent headway before I start posting. Don't worry, though. I haven't forgotten you.