One Wednesday night, I went up to the astronomy tower. It was very late – about 11:30. I often went up there because it was so peaceful and beautiful. It was very quiet – all you could hear was the owls hooting and the occasional insect. All the stars were visible. Once in a while, I'd bring a book to read, but usually I'd just go up there and stare out at the beautiful night's sky. Usually I was the only one there.

This Wednesday was different, however. Very different. As I made my way into the room, it became very apparent to me. I looked across the moon-lit room to the open window and saw someone standing on the ledge of the window about to jump.

"Hey!" I yelled. I was shocked. "What are you doing?"

"What do you think I'm doing?" the person at the window ledge yelled sarcastically. I walked closer, as he turned around. I realized who it was. It was Draco Malfoy. From the looks of it he had been crying.

"I don't know, but if you jump down from that window, there's no way you'll survive!" I said, not entirely comprehending Draco's motive in doing what he was doing.

"Yeah. I realize that. Why do you think I'd be jumping off otherwise?"

"You're... You're trying to kill yourself?"

"Wow. You're the smartest person in this school, and it took you that long to figure that out? Yes, my purpose in jumping off this ledge is to kill myself."


"Why do you care?"

"Because I think that no matter what someone's done in their life or no matter what has happened to them it's not worth ending their life? Why are you doing this?"

"Why are you even talking to me? Don't you hate me for everything I've said and done to you and your friends?"

This world will never be
What I expected
And if I don't belong
Who would've guessed it
I will not leave alone
Everything that I own
To make you feel like it's not too late
It's never too late

"No. I don't hate you. You're the one who hates me, remember? You've hated me since we got to this school."

"Yeah. About that – I don't hate you, anymore. I had stupid reasons to hate you. I was a jerk back then. I treated you horribly just because your parents weren't wizards, and thanks to my dear old dad, I thought that being in a wizarding family, being a so-called 'pureblood', made me better than you. Well, it doesn't. It don't make one difference if someone is muggle-born or 'pureblood''. And I got a newsflash for my father. Voldemort isn't even a pureblood! Voldemort is a hypocrite! His father was a muggle! Look, I'm sorry for everything I've done to you and everyone else. I wish I could take it back, but I can't. I have to live with the guilt of everything I've done day after day."

"So, this enormous guilt – that's why you want to end your life?"

"Yes. I realize that I've hurt a lot of people with my actions. I killed somebody. Well, good as killed him," Draco shouted. It seemed like he was glad to be talking, like he had bottled up all the pain he had felt. Bottled it up, hoping it would all just go away.

"Dumbledore?" I asked, knowing a little about what happened 6th year, but never knowing the story from his point of view.

"Yeah," Draco said quietly, looking at the ground below.

"From what I know, you couldn't kill him. Snape killed him. So where is your guilt in that situation?"

"I had disarmed him, which left him defenseless. Left him easy prey to Snape. You're right – I didn't kill him. I couldn't do it, but I made him easier to kill. I may not be a killer, but that does not mean I don't have the right to feel guilty. I didn't even have any reason to kill him, other than the fact that Voldemort was going to kill me!"

Even if I say
It'll be alright
Still I hear you say
You want to end your life
Now and again we try
To just stay alive
Maybe we'll turn it around
'Cause it's not too late
It's never too late

"I see, but Dumbledore might have died anyways."

"Yeah, that's true. But I just made it that much easier to kill him. He was a good man, too. I found that out when I was about to kill him. He was brave – he didn't really show any sign of fear, but then again, I think he knew somehow that I wasn't going to be able to complete my 'job'. He also showed me mercy – he told me a way out of my situation that would allow me to escape punishment."

"Yeah, he was a good man."

"He was even willing to forgive me for almost killing Ron Weasley and Katie Bell, something I can't even do myself now. I can't seem to forgive myself for almost killing them. Not to mention the fact that I dragged Rosmerta into my plan by placing the Imperious Curse on her."

"Yeah. I heard about that. How did you get out of going to Azkaban?"


"The Imperious Curse is an Unforgivable Curse. There is a punishment of a life sentence in Azkaban for using it on a fellow human."

"Oh, yeah. I knew that. I got out of the life in Azkaban penalty because I was a minor at the time I had used it on Rosmerta. That somehow excluded me from punishment. Whatever – I think I should have still gone to Azkaban. I knew exactly what I was doing."

"Yeah, but weren't you just killing Dumbledore because Voldemort threatened to kill you if you didn't?"

I saw Draco shudder at the use of Voldemort's name. He replied, "Yes, but that doesn't exactly excuse what I did. I'm taking responsibility for own wrongdoings. I can't remember the last time I honestly did something that benefited someone else, and that honestly scares me. Now, do you see why I'm about to do what I'm about to do?"

"I get why you feel this way, yes. You feel like you've screwed up too many times to ever be able to make up for everyone you've hurt."

"Yeah, and that's why I don't deserve to be alive anymore. The world will be so much better off without me."

No one will ever see
This side reflected
And if there's something wrong
Who would've guessed it
And I have left alone
Everything that I own
To make you feel like
It's not too late
It's never too late

"Look, what about the people who actually care about you? You'll just hurt them. You'll just hurt more people!"

"Who? Who'll actually care?"

"Your mother?"

"Yeah. She'd care – if she was alive," Draco said, sadly. I saw a small tear coming out of his eye. He wiped it away quickly.

"What happened to your mother?"

"She died," he said, trying to show no emotion, but failing.

"How'd she die?" I asked.

"She killed herself. She couldn't take anymore of my father, " he said, still trying to hide his emotions.

"I'm sorry to hear that." I really was. I couldn't imagine what it would be like to lose my mother.

"Yeah, I'm sure you are," Draco responded, bitterly. "Why the heck are you still here? Why do you even care? Why won't you just leave me alone? Why do you insist on still trying to get me not to jump off?"

"I'm here because, believe it or not, I actually do care. I just don't think that killing yourself is ever worth it. That's why I am trying so hard to get you to step away from that ledge. I'm trying to get you to see that this isn't going to solve anything. I'm trying to get you to see that there is still something to live for."

"What is there to live for? Most people in this school hate me for what I've done to them."

"Look. I get it. You feel guilty for all you've done – you've made that quite clear. I want to get back to talking about your mother."

"Why? Why do you insist on talking about her?"

"Because I see how much it hurts you that she died. You can't hide behind a mask, Draco. I can see right through it."

Even if I say
It'll be alright
Still I hear you say
You want to end your life
Now and again we try
To just stay alive
Maybe we'll turn it around
'Cause it's not too late
It's never too late

"I'm gunna let you in on something, Hermione. The reason why I rarely show my emotions is simple."

"Your father?"

"Yeah. He taught me that showing emotions shows weakness. Pain, hurt, grief, guilt – all showed weakness, and showing weakness wasn't allowed."

"Having emotions is part of being human. It isn't a bad thing. It's bad to keep everything bottled up inside."

"I get that now," he said, a tear rolling down his cheek. For the first time, he didn't wipe it away. He just kept talking. "It really did hurt when she died. The day I found out was honestly the first time I actually cried. I had finally broken. I could barely gather the energy or willpower to read the suicide note. It just made things too real." He was actually crying now, finally being real.

"I understand. I can see why it must have been hard for you."

"I finally did read it though. I remember reading the reasons she had put down for taking her own life and feeling slightly angry at her. I remember thinking that she had abandoned me and that she had left me alone to deal with my father on my own."

Draco had moved off of the window ledge. We were now sitting on the floor near the window.

"I know that it had also hurt her," he continued. "to leave me in the situation I had been left in, though. She loved me and cared about me a lot. She just couldn't take anymore of everything she went through with my father. She'd finally had enough."

"Did your father hurt her physically or just yell at her?"

"Both. He was constantly yelling at her and insulting her. He didn't hit her when I was around. I know he did hit her though."

"How do you know?"

The world we knew
Won't come back
The time we've lost
Can't get it back
The life we had
Won't be ours again

"Because I kept seeing bruises all over her when I came home from school for summer, winter and spring break. She blamed it on her being klutzy, but I never believed her. I mean, honestly, Lucius had used the Cruciatus Curse on both of us. I can't believe he would hesitate to hit her."

"But why would he hide that he was hitting her when you saw him using the Cruciatus Curse? I mean, I don't know for sure, but it seems that the Cruciatus Curse would be worse than having someone hit you – even with all the strength they have."

"I don't know!" Draco said, suddenly shouting. "He was crazy! I'm not going to try to decipher the motives of a madman! It's not worth my time!"

"Did he ever hit you?"

"No. I think he was afraid that someone at school might have gotten suspicious. Not that he wouldn't have just gotten away with it – I doubt anyone would have cared if he had hit me. I wouldn't know if you're right about the Cruciatus Curse being more painful than being hit. I can't imagine it wouldn't be. Getting hit with the Cruciatus Curse is one of the most painful things I have experienced."

"One of the most painful things you have experienced?"

"Yeah. It wasn't the most painful thing I've experienced before though. The most pain I have ever experienced was back in fourth year when Moody turned me into a ferret."

"I remember that. How was that more painful than the Cruciatus Curse?"

"The pain lasts longer. With the Cruciatus Curse, the pain is over when the person who put the spell on you ends the spell. You can still remember what it felt like to be hit with the spell, but you don't feel any actual pain anymore. When I was turned into a ferret and bounced up and down, hitting the floor multiple times, my entire body hurt for the rest of the day. The pain my back lasted the next two days."

This world will never be
What I expected
And if I don't belong

"Oh. I didn't realize that what Moody had done to you had hurt that much. You could have gone down to the hospital wing and asked Madam Pomfrey for a potion to ease pain."

"Yeah. I realize that."

"Why didn't you?"

"I had a large amount of pride back then and, due mostly to my father's influence, I thought that it would be bad for me to do that, because I would be admitting that I was in pain, which-"

"would show weakness," I said completing his sentence. He just nodded. "So back to the whole issue of whether or not anyone would be hurt by your death. Your father?"

Draco laughed. "Are you kidding me? He couldn't care less about me!"

"I see. That must be awful, knowing that he doesn't care about you."

"Yeah. It is. I've just become sort of numb to it, though. It's one of the only ways I know how to deal with stuff, becoming numb to the hurt things cause. It's not a good way, though. A person can't be numb forever. Eventually, something happens to cause them to break. Everyone has a breaking point, when they simply can't just be numb to everything."

"For you, it was when you heard that your mother had died."

Yeah. I'll never understand why exactly my mom married my father.. I don't understand why she stayed married to my father after everything she went through. I mean, I know why, but I don't understand it, and I won't ever understand it."

"So, why did she marry him? Why did she put up with everything that happened to her?"

Even if I say
It'll be alright
Still I hear you say
You want to end your life
Now and again we try
To just stay alive
Maybe we'll turn it around
'Cause it's not too late
It's never too late

"She married him because she loved him. She put up with everything he did because she thought he'd change. She also was afraid of what her financial situation would be if she divorced him. She didn't just fear it for herself – she had me in mind. She didn't want me to be in a situation where my parent was in poverty. She thought it was better if she put up with everything he did. The list of what he did to hurt her was pretty long. Not only did he yell and scream at her, call her names, torture her with the Cruciatus Curse, and hit her, but he also cheated on her with many women. It also hurt her when he yelled at me and put the Cruciatus Curse on me."

"I understand how that would hurt her to see you yelled at and hit with Cruciatus Curse. She really loved you."

"Yeah. Unlike my father. He didn't care about anyone or love anyone, even my mother! He just cared about money and power. They were the only things that mattered to him."

"What about your friends? Pansy? Crabbe? Goyle? Wouldn't they care?"

"No. They wouldn't care! They're just friends with me because of my family's power and money. Pansy's just dating me because of that reason and other reasons. When my mother died, they didn't even care that I was hurting. They didn't try to comfort me, like true friends would. I can't talk to them honestly, like I am talking to you. My relationship with Pansy is pretty much entirely physical, except for the few empty, meaningless conversations we have."

Maybe we'll turn it around
'Cause it's not too late
It's never too late (It's never too late)
It's not too late
It's never too late

"Oh. Yeah, it is nice having true friends who I can talk to. It's nice having friends who'll stick up for me and who are there for me."

"Yup. I can imagine it would be. I guess I just don't know how to pick my friends well. My friends certainly haven't helped me stay out of trouble. They held the same ideas and beliefs about people as I did."

"That's why you were friends with them. People tend to become friends with others of the same viewpoints and beliefs as them."

"Yeah. Well, now I don't have the same viewpoints and beliefs as them. They are not the kind of people I want to be friends with anymore. Unfortunately, all the people who I would want to be friends with don't trust me because of everything I've done to hurt them."

"I trust you and I forgive you for what you've said and done to me."


"Yeah. And if you'd like us to, we can be friends."

"I'd like that."

"Do you still think that you don't deserve to be alive?"

"No. I've realized that forgiveness isn't that difficult to achieve. Now that you've forgiven me, I think I can forgive myself, and maybe others can forgive me."

"Yup. Remember: It's never too late to turn your life around and become who you want to be."

He just nodded, and then said, "Goodnight." He then walked down the stairs.

A couple of minutes later, I walked down the stairs, realizing I had done two good things; I had made someone realize that it was not too late to turn his life around and I had saved a life.

Song Lyrics: "Never Too Late" by Three Days Grace