Chapter 19- Closure
The walk back to the castle seemed to take longer than usual. Hermione didn't really care either; Draco finally admitted what she wanted to know for so long. The sky grew suddenly darker. Draco stopped; the hair on his neck began to rise. Hermione looked around, no one was there, and the castle looked dark and ominous.
"Something isn't right." Draco said, looking at his surroundings.
"Really? Hadn't noticed." Hermione glared, pulling out her wand.
"Put it away." A sneering voice came from beyond the shadows.
Draco couldn't believe his ears. "Father?" He whispered. Draco protectively stood in front of Hermione, backing away slowly. It wasn't long before Draco realized it was not just his father. It was him, and the death eaters.
They circled around the two quickly, wands raised.
"Draco. You were warned this could never happen. Why must you disobey me?" His father asked calmly.
"Please…." He began.
"What's this? He's begging!" A voice shouted from behind a mask. Draco guessed it was Mr. Crabbe.
Hermione began to tremble, not from the cold.
"Get out of the way. We will dispose of her properly." Another voice shouted. Draco's father held up a hand.
"Wait." He commanded. He looked at his son curiously; Draco had grabbed Hermione and wrapped her in his arms, her face in his chest.
"I won't let you." Draco whispered. "I finally know what it means. I finally know what this is." Draco looked down into Hermione's eyes. "You were right. I needed to be happy for me, not for anyone else, and I am."
A tear rolled down Hermione's cheek as her face was pressed back into Draco's chest.
"I won't stand aside." Draco said more defiantly.
Draco's father shrugged. "That's alright; I can shoot her from here."
There was a flash of light, a movement of bodies, chaotic screams and suddenly silence.
Draco couldn't open his eyes. He didn't want to know what had happened. He felt Hermione in his arms, but couldn't tell if she was alive. He heard a shout from somewhere behind him, but it was too far away.
The sound was clearer. Draco distinguished someone calling to the girl in his arms. He slowly opened an eye. There was fog lifting all around him, he couldn't see more than a foot away. His other eye opened, he looked down into a bushel of wavy brown hair. He pushed Hermione back and grabbed her face to look into her eyes.
"Draco, you're squishing my face." She muttered through puckered lips.
He sighed in relief as a wave of hot tears began running down his cheek.
Alex was there first. "Oh my god! Hermione are you alright? What happened?"
She bent down next to the huddled couple.
Ron and Harry came quickly behind.
"We saw everything, but we couldn't get past. There was some sort of barrier, I don't understand." Ron said quickly.
Harry shuddered. "It's a good thing Hermione learned that shield spell. We saw it rebound and blast McNair in the face. They all fled like he'd been shot in the eye."
Hermione smiled proudly. "I wasn't ready to be killed at the mercy of those bloody whelps."
Draco wiped the sweat collecting on his brow. "Yea, well one of those whelps is my father. Well," Draco frowned. "Was. He was ready to kill me too. Just because I love you." He looked at Hermione. She was smiling.
"Despite the fact that we almost died because you love me. I love you too."
"I think I'm going to puke." Alex said as she began to walk away.
"Well hey!" Ron said, running after her. "I love you! Doesn't that count?"
She stopped. "That's different. You don't make me have to puke."
"Oh good." Ron said in relief.
"Ok now I feel sick." Harry laughed.
"I think this has been one bloody hell of an adventure so far." Hermione sighed as she and Draco stood up to follow the others.
"So far." Draco agreed.
Ginny sat alone in the Great Hall as the others returned. Hermione, still sopping wet, walked right past everyone and straight up to her dorm to change clothes. Draco stood with the others awkwardly.
"So you've finally let it go, have you?" Alex asked with a cheeky smile.
"You're obsession with me?" She said, batting her eyelashes.
"You? Ha!" Draco rolled his eyes. "You flatter yourself."
"You can't deny it."
"I can. I will. I have." Draco said with a smile as he walked off.
"Men." Alex scoffed. "I'll never understand it."
"So what will we do next?" Harry asked, changing the subject.
"I think I'll go check on Hermione." Ginny said, motioning Alex to follow.
"Oh sure, leave us all alone again." Ron pouted.
"I'm sure you'll manage." Ginny laughed.
The two girls began walked to the common room quickly, but were stopped in front of the portrait by Seamus.
Ginny looked awkwardly to Alex. She nodded for Ginny to go on without her. Seamus looked curiously at Ginny then back to Alex.
"I swear Seamus if you say I'm a lesbian I'll wound you." Alex said, crossing her arms.
His eyes widened. "No, no. I won't say it."
"Then what do you want?"
Alex sighed. "What sort of sick fantasy are you trying to get me to admit to?"
"I'm just not convinced." Seamus fiddled with his shirt and blushed a little.
"Seamus, you like me don't you?" Alex said with a smile.
"No!" He scratched the back of his neck nervously. "Maybe."
"Aww, you're so cute." She grabbed his cheek and wiggled it. Alex began to walk away.
"Alex." Seamus said with a smile.
She stopped and turned. "Hmm?"
"Do you love him?"
Alex smiled. "With all my heart."
She walked up to Seamus and gave him a hug. Pulling away slowly she placed a friendly kiss on his cheek.
"You know, you're really not my type anyways." Seamus laughed. "I don't think I could handle a girl who can easily kick my ass."
"It was pretty easy." Alex smiled. She turned and walked into the common room to find Hermione and Ginny.
"What was that about?" Ginny asked.
Alex waved her off. "Closure."
Hermione looked confused. "Ok then."
"What can I say. When I'm hot. I'm scorchin'." Alex said with a flaunting body pose. The three girls laughed.
"I don't think anything could possible get better." Ginny smiled as they sat around the fire.
"Who knows?" Hermione sighed.
"That's how great beginnings start." Alex said poetically. "The end is only the start of a new adventure."