Disclaimer: I don't own Harry Potter and Co.

Warnings: Mild Language, Mild 'themes'

Dedicated to: Shades-of-Gray8712, cause she requested it a while ago. :)

Hermione Jane Granger walked down the empty hall of Hogwarts. It was a month until summer vacation, and all the sane people were outside enjoying the beautiful day.

Someone fell into step behind the bushy-haired seventh year, not that she noticed as she balanced several large books in her arms. They watched her intently, loosening their tie as they went. The boy got strange looks from the few that were scurrying about inside, but he ignored them and continued on his path.

Hermione seemed oblivious to her follower as the topmost book slipped off the pile. She sighed and bent down carefully, but it didn't seem to be careful enough as all the books toppled out of her arms, and all the loose leaves of parchment that had been stuck in the pages fluttered about the hall. She let out a few words that stunned passerby, and the boy smirked a little, running his fingers through his hair. As the brunette reached out for the last bit of parchment, a pale hand intercepted hers, retrieving the page of notes and holding it out to her. She blinked in confusion and muttered a thanks, taking the parchment and sticking it in the pages of one of her books. Only then did she look to see who had helped her…only to find the spot where the person one occupied, was empty. Hermione blinked and sighed, placing the last book on her pile, before continuing on her path.

"Draco! Hey Draco!" Blaise called, skidding down the hall, his robes billowing out after him. Draco sighed and glanced back, only mildly halting his pace. Blaise caught up to him and grinned

"Why aren't you outside mate? It's not like the sun would hurt…" Blaise muttered, Draco glared

"Zabini, stop making wise cracks about my complexion."

"Draco, stop taking everything so personally." He replied, the blonde stopped and looked at him, perking an eyebrow expectantly


"Well what?"

Draco sighed and rubbed his temple in irritation.

"What was so important that you ran over a group of third years? I know it wasn't the fact I wasn't basking in the sun with the lot of you."

Blaise shuffled his feet slightly and sighed

"Um…Pansy threatened me. Until I agreed to convince you to come outside." He admitted, avoiding Draco's gaze. Draco sighed and started walking again

"You may inform Parkinson, that I would rather not join her outside, and invite her, at her earliest convenience…to bite me."

Blaise smirked after Draco

"You know…I have a feeling she wants to do a whole lot more then that." He drawled, Draco stopped and shuddered a little

"I hate you Zabini."

Hermione sat at the practically empty Gryffindor table and sighed. Harry looked at her and perked an eyebrow, while Ron continued to down everything in arms reach.

"What's up 'Mione?" Harry asked, sipping his pumpkin juice, Hermione sighed and shrugged

"I've felt like I was being watched all day…" She said quietly, Harry frowned and opened his mouth to speak

"No Harry…I don't think its Voldemort." Hermione stated before he could get the words out. He sighed and nodded, before going back to his lunch. Hermione sighed uncomfortably and glanced around the room. A few Ravenclaw seventh years, a first year Hufflepuff…and Malfoy were in the room. She blinked, not remembering Malfoy being in the room when she entered, she sighed and looked at him.

He was bent over a potions book, poking at his food every once and a while. He seemed utterly peaceful where he was and yet…

Hermione glanced out the window where Parkinson, Zabini, Crabbe and Goyle were sitting under a tree

Shouldn't he be there?

She looked back at Malfoy and was surprised to see her gaze was met. But not in the usual hateful or disgusted way. This gaze was neutral, almost respectable. Hermione blinked a few times and Malfoy was once again reading his potions book.

The girl blinked and thought idly that maybe her eyes deceived her. She sighed and turned back to her meal. Trying to force any uncomfortable nagging out of her mind…she was being paranoid. That was all.

A few nights later, Draco wandered down a hall slowly. He was nowhere near the dungeon…but at this point he didn't care much…

He stopped and gently set a hand on the stone wall, tracing the contours…

He hadn't realized how much he would miss the castle…more then he would miss his own house…

Draco blinked

That was if you wanted to call it a house.

Draco heard voices coming around the corner, but he didn't pay attention to them.

He stepped forward a little, and looked out at the grounds

"Malfoy?" A sudden voice asked, Draco sighed and turned to face Harry and Ron.

"Potter, Weasley." He sneered…

A façade really…but who was going to do it if not him?

Ron started to reach for his wand as Hermione walked up

"Let's go. You guys still need to finish your studying." She stated, looking Draco in the eye squarely. There was something there that frightened Draco…she knew he was faking…she knew he lied…

This scared him more then any of the punishments Voldemort could deal out.

She pushed Harry and Ron down the hall…but hesitated in following them. She turned and faced the Slytherin Prince

"Draco." She stated respectably, Draco blinked and looked a little confused, but said nothing in return; Hermione didn't seem to expect an answer

"You lost?" She asked, Draco perked an eyebrow and still said nothing, Hermione looked to the floor and tugged at the sleeve of her robes, before turning and starting to walk away

"No I'm not. Granger." Draco said, Hermione turned and looked at him

"Then why are you up here?" She asked, her tone completely lacking the hostility it would've normally held.

"Because this is where my feet led me." He stated simply with a slight shrug, Hermione nodded a little. A silence filled the hall. The slight sound of a few younger year students chattering a few floors down. Neither Draco, nor Hermione knew how to break the tension. Nor why there was tension. The blonde glanced out the window to avoid the eyes of Hermione. She had an unnerving, unsettling stare. Hermione perked an eyebrow

"Yes, I know you know Granger." He stated, she blinked

"You know I know what?" She asked, Draco looked at her, she looked genuinely confused. Draco blinked, looking a little confused himself

"Nothing, never mind." He stated, starting down the hall. Hermione watched him go, her curiousity successfully peaked, she followed

"Know what Draco?" she asked again, Draco glanced at her, perking an eyebrow

"I said it's nothing Granger." He repeated, Hermione blinked

"Oh." She nodded a little, but continued to follow Draco

"…So what is it I know?" She asked for the third time, Draco sighed and glanced at her irritably

"Dammit woman, are you always so annoying?" He questioned in exasperation.

"Yes." Hermione stated, not missing a beat "Now what do I know?"

"Nothing!" Draco shouted "Bloody hell! Just go back to your little Gryffindor haven and stop being a know-it-all!"

Hermione smirked

"Its better then a cocky Slytherin prat!"

"At least I don't like Weasel-bee!" Draco shot back, Hermione blinked

"Maybe you do! You can't stop staring at the Gryffindor table." She stated. Draco averted his gaze and Hermione grinned

"Who is it?" She questioned gleefully, Draco started to walk away, she skipped after him

"Is it Harry? Seamus? Ron? Dean? …Neville?" She squeaked, practically bouncing up and down, Draco blinked

"What the bloody hell….why are all the people you're naming men?" He asked, blinking in confusion, Hermione blinked back

"…'Cause you're gay?" She answered. Draco blinked

"WHAT?"He shouted, his face flushing in anger. Hermione blinked

"…You're not gay?" she asked, Draco stared at her

"No. Hell. No." He stated slowly, Hermione smirked

"I don't believe you." She stated, placing her hands on her hips. Draco blinked

"Alright. I'll prove it."

"Prove it?" Hermione asked "How are you going to do that?"

Draco thought for a second and smirked slowly

"Simple." He stated, Hermione perked an eyebrow

"Oh really? Go on then. Prove it." She stated. Draco chuckled

"Alright. I will." He stated, and suddenly his lips were on hers.

Hermione blinked, clearly stunned by the Slytherin's actions, before she realized what happened.

She jerked her body away from his and had her wand out in an instant, thinking of the first spell that would hurt the most

Draco smirked a little more, not at all unnerved by her wand at his throat

"There…I proved it Granger."

Hermione blinked and tried to think up a word foul enough to describe him, failing considerably, and before she could utter a word, the blonde was gone…sinking back into the shadow that willingly consumed him.

Author's Note: Yay! XD; I live!

This isn't the end. There will be at least one more chapter.

Tell me how much you missed me:D Luff and cookies to all.