I'll Get Over You

His eyes were narrow slits, like two slivers of granite chiseled from a stone. His parchment white hair clung in wet clumps to his face and forehead, the storm on the grounds not nearly as violent as the one brewing within his chest. For three hours—his insides tight and his knees drawn up—he'd sat by the inky black lake, the giant squid's tentacles rising and falling with the ravaging waves. He hadn't bothered to seek some form of shelter, whether it be under the branches of a tree or in the castle. No, he needed this, as much as anyone can need numb, wrinkled fingers and a scratchy throat constricted with cold.

The corridors were noticeably quieter this time of night, the only movements belonging to wandering ghosts and shifting portraits who snored lightly. He skirted the walls, careful with trick cracks designed to trip unsuspecting passersby. A jagged shadow sprang from the corner of his eye—he spun round so fast he nearly twisted his legs with one another and fell over. Luckily he was able to right himself, cursing under his breath at his hasty stupidity; it was only a suit of armor, stretching its limbs. He should have known better, though it probably didn't help matters that he'd snuck down to Hogsmeade and drown himself in shot after shot of Firewhiskey.

He rounded a corner, thinking quite highly of himself that he hadn't even come close to getting caught, when he collided with a smooth, curved surface. His eyes focused and unfocused, until the glint of blood red rubies shown in the dim light of the Entrance Hall—for he had used a different, more secluded exit/entrance. He scoffed at the Gryffindor hourglass; they were ahead, again, of course. He took a glance at his own house hourglass, the shimmering emeralds only a few less than the rubies. How he wished it was still fifth year, with him as part of the Inquisitorial Squad. Then he'd show those damned Gryffindors and their sickening intra-house chumminess.

Making it successfully back to his dormitory without getting caught, Draco Malfoy whispered the password and slipped through the opening provided when the stonewall yawned open. The common room was blessedly free of his fellow Slytherins and, taking the peace and quiet entirely for granted, he threw himself down on the nearest leather sofa, tucking his hands under his head. The fire in the hearth was but a whisper of its usual blazing self, a few glowing embers still orange in the mound of blackened ashes. It was just as well, however; Draco didn't want anyone to see him if they happened to come down.

The plan had been to spend as much time by the lake as necessary, until his thoughts were completely baptized in the spring rains. He needed a clear head, free of any lingering images of his father or Professor Snape or the Dark Lord himself. And, most of all, free of her.

He turned onto his side and gave a loud sigh, a near-groan. No amount of beatings he'd taken from his father, from his peers, even from falling off his broom at Quidditch practice—none of it could match the ache that dug into his very bones.

I don't need to fall at your feet
Just 'cause you cut me to the bone
And I won't miss the way that you kiss me
We were never carved in stone
If I don't listen to the talk of the town
Then maybe I can fool myself

He clutched the nearest object—a book someone had left on the coffee table—and hurled it across the room. A lamp was the unfortunate victim, hurtling off its stand and crashing to the floor with a resounding smash. It didn't make sense; all they'd ever done was bicker and insult one another, even getting physically violent when the mood called for it. And he had quite the collection of bruises and abrasions to prove it.

Not to say that there weren't good times. His lip curl into a vicious smirk without his consent—the sex alone had been worth it all. Of course there were other things—her devotion, to both him and her morals and goals; her eyes, big and knowing, always finding his across a crowded room; her soft skin; and, at the top of the list, her love. Yes, that's right, Draco Malfoy missed a girl because she had actually loved him.

But then that was never supposed to happen, was it? It all started as a sick trick of fate, a cruel joke from the gods. It had all been about sex in the beginning; they pulled each other feverishly into broom cupboards and empty classrooms whenever they had five minutes to spare, afterwards never looking one another in the eye save to spit a nasty insult or slur.

Soon, however, it had grown to more. Neither wanted to admit it, but they needed the other, needed the comfort only their presence could deliver. The only problem was, it was forbidden. Never meant to be.

And for that reason, above all others, Draco knew he would endure. He had to.

Right?

I'll get over you…I know I will
I'll pretend my ship's not sinking
And I'll tell myself I'm over you
'cause I'm the king of wishful thinking
I am the king of wishful thinking

Deciding to call it a night—he couldn't take the thought of her any longer—Draco pulled himself from the sofa and trekked up the stairs to his room. Tomorrow he would get over her. Tomorrow.

The morning dawned bright and cheery, a dark contrast to his rapidly souring disposition. Not only was it far too early to be awake on a Saturday, but the entire night his dreams had been bombarded with memories of her, her careful and sensuous smile haunting the deepest corners of his subconscious.

Rolling out of bed, he tugged on a clean pair of gray trousers and a crisp white Oxford shirt. He found his robes over the back of his desk chair and snatched them up, pulling them on as he exited his room in need of a good hardy breakfast to ease his mind.

Expectedly, there were few students in the Great Hall at such an early hour. A handful of people at most at each house table. Of course, he thought bitterly, she had to be there, her perfectly straight back to him, as if she sat facing the opposite side of the room on purpose, anticipating his untimely arrival.

He forced himself to ignore her presence, shoving food onto his plate as though he hadn't eaten in weeks; a sad attempt at a replacement. Finally, after his fifth piece of buttered and jammed toast, and his third glass of icy pumpkin juice, he was finally content. He eased his shoulders, rested his head on one of his hands, his thoughts on an impending Quidditch match against Ravenclaw. He had a new strategy up his sleeve that he'd been practicing; even his fellow team members didn't know about it.

Cleaning his plate and downing the last of his juice, Draco jumped from his seat and hurried from the Great Hall as if it housed a legion of diseased lepers. It was nearly ten o'clock and, the last time he checked, no one had the Quidditch Pitch until noon.

He reached the locker room some ten minutes later and dressed into his training gear as quickly as possible. He grabbed his broomstick, then rushed towards the field as if, once there, all his problems would be solved. Unfortunately, however, someone else had the very same idea.

She was dressed in a pair of tight black cotton pants, a form-fitting white tank top, and a pair of dingy green trainers. Her face, normally smooth and white as a china doll's, was flushed a deep pink, a thin layer of sweat coating her forehead. Bent over, her hands on her knees, she panted wildly, a few strands of saturated hair stuck to her face. He wondered, almost aloud, what she was doing, when she sprang upright and took off. It was then that he noticed the worn path in the grass of the pitch. She couldn't have been out there that long, running circles, which meant she'd been out on the field at least a week and a half, for hours at a time, to create such an impression.

He watched her, time crawling by in slow sweeps, her lithe body rushing past him each time she finished a lap. It was 10:30, on the dot, when she finally came to a halt for good, mopping her forehead, face, and neck with a clothe he hadn't seen with her before. She jogged over to the entrance of the field, the very place Draco had been standing, gawking at her, and retrieved a jug of water he hadn't seen. He thought that maybe she wasn't going to detect him, when she suddenly stiffened and turned her head, her eyes catching his the way they'd done so many times in the past.

Lowering the jug from her lips, she wiped her mouth and, with a flick of her wand, it and the towel disappeared.

"Morning," she said curtly, brushing by him as if they were mere acquaintances that sometimes were paired up during class.

When he was certain she was out of view, he hopped onto his broom, rocketing into the air as if he meant to slice right through the invisible particles. After only a few minutes his eyes stung and his fingers ached with how tight he was gripping the broom handle. He touched down, rubbing his eyes furiously.

"Damn wind," he hissed, knowing full well that it had nothing to do with it. He took ten deep breaths, counting each, then launched himself back into the sky.

He wasn't going to let her win; he wasn't going to be the only one to miss what they'd had.

Letting out a great war cry, he tore across the pitch.

I refuse to give in to my blues
That's not how it's going to be
And I deny the tears in my eyes
I don't want to let you see…no
That you have made a hole in my heart
And now I've got to fool myself

That night, instead of attending dinner, Draco slipped from the castle and made for his spot beside the lake. The sky was clear tonight, only a few scattered clouds, the near-full moon hovering like a winking eye over him.

He pulled off his shoes, then socks, and rolled up his pant legs to his knees. Testing the water with his big toe first, he plunged both feet into the mildly chilling water. The surface was so murky, reflecting only the velvety dark blue sky, that it appeared as though the lake had swallowed his feet. He laughed outright at the thought, thinking of how fitting it would be that he was a cripple after all this.

How long had it been? Four weeks? Five?

It felt like eons and, at the same time, it felt as though he were only out taking a stroll once she'd fallen fast asleep after an exhausting evening in his bed. The pain hadn't ebbed so far, hadn't faded in the least. Eventually it would and he could go about his days in as much peace as his lineage provided him. He would be back to normal soon enough—right?

I'll get over you…I know I will
I'll pretend my ship's not sinking
And I'll tell myself I'm over you
'cause I'm the king of wishful thinking…
I'll get over you...I know I will
I'll pretend my ship's not sinking
And I'll tell myself I'm over you
'cause I'm the king of wishful thinking

Sticking his toes out of the water, the rest of his feet remaining below the surface, Draco leaned back on his hands, suppressing a weighty sigh. He'd become prone to them lately, and it had to stop. This was no life for a pureblood wizard of high society.

He prided himself on one thing in this whole ordeal, though. Save for earlier that morning, he hadn't cried a single tear. And that didn't even count really, because the wind made his eyes water. He had cried a few times in his adolescence (obviously much more in his childhood), each instance holding a significantly raw memory. So, if he got through this without crying, then he would be fine.

I will never, never shed a tear for you
I'll get over you

If I don't listen to the talk of the town
Then maybe I can fool myself…

He would simply ignore her, and everything that had the slightest association with her. It would be easy enough once he'd graduated Hogwarts; he'd have far too many other things on his mind to lend a thought to her.

Drying his feet on the grass, Draco pulled his shoes and socks back on. He nodded a good-bye to the lake, thanking it silently for its company—without those hypnotizing waves to stare into he might not have made it through the past month.

He trudged across the grounds and back into the castle, just in time to see students shuffling out of the Great Hall and back to their respective dormitories. He joined the flow of traffic, blending in effortlessly, and walked along the corridors with his schoolmates. No one would notice his absence and, if any of the Slytherins had, they wouldn't approach him about it. They all knew well enough to keep their distance, this year especially.

Picking his head up just a little higher, he allowed his lips to stretch into as much of a smile as he was going to get. Only a short while longer of pretending to be alright and then he truly would be. He had to.

He was a Slytherin, after all.

I'll get over you…I know I will
I'll pretend my ship's not sinking
And I'll tell myself I'm over you
'cause I'm the king of wishful thinking
I'm the king of wishful thinking
I'll get over you…I know I will
You made a hole in my heart
But I won't shed a tear for you
I'll be the king of wishful thinking
I'll get over you…

In the shadows, hidden among the others, her eyes found the back of his head. He'd been wrong, someone had taken note of his absence at dinner.

They turned a corner and, instead of heading the other direction where her dormitory was, she cut across the hall and followed the unknowing group of Slytherins towards the dungeons. Several times she feared he sensed someone out of place, but he never turned his head, never gave any inclination that he would discover her in the throng of green and silver and black.

They had nearly reached their commons, when she stopped herself suddenly, and crouched behind a wall. They continued on, oblivious to her.

Sinking to the floor, she buried her face in her hands. Since the day they'd gone their separate ways—their final fight, lasting a record four hours and twelve minutes (that night they vowed their hatred to each other and, stupidly, they'd both believed the other, trying desperately to believe themselves)—she had been secretly keeping tabs on him, watching his every move to detect even a fleeting spark of regret.

After five weeks and three days, she finally comprehended the inevitable. He was over her. He was over her, and she still loved him.

"What are you doing?"

She gasped too loudly and scrambled to her feet too quickly to still appear casual.

"Nothing," she answered with bite, straightening herself to full height, her arms crossed rigidly over her chest.

"Were you following me?"

" 'Course not," she scoffed, rolling her eyes. "I needed to ask Professor Snape a question."

"That's the biggest load of dragon dung I've ever heard. Just admit you were following me, say whatever the bloody hell you need to say, then leave me be."

Her eyes darken and her arms dropped at her sides. For a moment he thought she might slap him. Or worse—cry. She remained collected, however, and he thanked the gods for that at least.

"I was simply…simply doing some research," she came up with weakly.

"On what topic?" he inquired without skipping a beat. He had spent too long forgetting her to let her creep back into his head now.

"Just let me go, Malfoy," she demanded, attempting to get by him. He wouldn't have it, however—no, she deserved the pain just as much as he did—and yanked her back in place, holding her against the wall with one outstretched arm. "Why are you doing this?"

"You followed me," he pointed out darkly. "I only wish to know why."

"Well you're just as dumb as your Neanderthal cronies if you haven't figured it out yet!"

And then she did start to cry, and his resolve shattered, and he let her go.

"Why can't I get you out of my head?" she sobbed, then bolted down the hall, swallowed by shadows.

It took a full minute for him to comprehend her words and, once he did, took off after her. He wasn't thinking clearly, but then, that's how it had started in the first place. Neither of them had been thinking—either of the benefits or the consequences of their union—and that was the reason it had ended so terribly. Because, aside from his rigid rudeness and her lofty superiority she imagined she held over him, the bulk of their quarrels had been about everyone else. What they thought, or would think, or do. In the end it killed them.

He caught up with her some three corridors away from her dormitory, her muffled cries echoing off the walls. His heart jerked hard, but he pressed on.

He called her name.

She ignored him.

"I love you!" he finally called out, horrified at his own words. He hadn't even thought them, but, there they were, hanging between them like a thick fog.

She nearly tripped over her feet, skidding to a stop. He came round in front of her, but dared not attempt anything else to gain her attention. Not that he needed to—his outburst had been sufficient enough.

"I thought…" she whispered, her voice fading. She sucked in a breath, then looked up. He felt weak, as if he'd only just finished a grueling Quidditch match. "I thought you were over me."

"Me too," he answered, holding her gaze, as difficult as it was. "Wishful thinking, I know...But you know us Slytherins," he said, trying an embittered sort of laugh. He didn't know what that meant, but she formed her own assumptions.

"Yes," she agreed and, for the first time in months, she smiled at him. "You're cowards."

Normally, this would have ignited a volley of verbal curses from him. Then she would retaliate and before long they weren't speaking for days.

Instead, though, he took her face gently in his hands and kissed her as if it were the first time. But then, when you find your true love, your soul mate, every kiss holds that same power.

"You know this means we'll probably have to tell our friends," she said and folded against him. He felt like home.

"Yeah," he sighed, stroking her long tangle of brown curls he'd missed so much. "Just don't blame me if I accidentally hex one of them."

She chuckled into his chest, releasing him reluctantly and took his hand instead.

"I love you too, you know," she said as they headed back towards the dungeons. Finally, she would get to sleep again; she missed her (his) bed terribly.

"I know," he replied with a smirk.

She slapped his arm playfully.

"Arrogant prat."

"Insufferable Gryffindor."

And, before they could stop themselves, they burst with laughter.

"I missed you, Draco."

He smiled as if he wasn't going to reciprocate, then grabbed her about the waist, twirling her around before crushing her to him. It was such an incredible relief to be able to do things like that again.

"Me too," he whispered against her lips. "And I don't plan on doing it again. You understand that, Hermione? This is for good."


Fin!...I heard the song King Of Wishful Thinking (by Go West) on the radio and I realized that it would be good for a songfic about Hermione and Draco.

REVIEW! If you value me as a writer—reviews mean more stories/chapters!

P.S. For those of you who don't know the song or haven't heard it or haven't heard it in a long time—I really suggest you give it a listen either before or after reading this fic, just to get a better feel for it.