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Day Eight - The Wedding Day - The Final Day in "Another Week in the Life"
Another Saturday Morning: Their Wedding Day:
Hermione had so much trouble sleeping last night. When she finally fell asleep, it was only to be woken back up by the sound of Harry peeping into their guestroom and saying, "Wake up Hermione." She was disoriented at first. She forgot she was at Harry's house. She wondered what Draco was doing right now. Was he getting ready for the "big day"? She reluctantly rolled out of bed and went to the kitchen to eat some breakfast, even though her stomach was doing somersaults.
She ate and then apparated to Edgewood, where one of their house elves met her. "Master Malfoy told me to put Miss Granger's things in the guestroom. Your wedding dress is ready for you and I have already drawn you a bath."
"Thank you. Will you tell Master Malfoy I'm home?" Hermione requested.
"Master Malfoy is away," the little elf said, leading Hermione upstairs.
"Do you know where he is?" Hermione asked fearfully.
"No, I don't know where the Master might be," the little elf replied.
Hermione went into the guestroom and saw her dress hanging on the wardrobe. She hoped she would get to wear it today. She would if Malfoy showed up. She promised him she wouldn't leave him at the altar, but he made no similar declaration. She lowered herself in the bath and contemplated what she would do if he didn't show up. Would she be able to forgive him? Did they really leave things that broken last night?
Wanting to rid herself of the feeling of gloom, she got out of the tub and proceeded to fix her hair and makeup. She would not think bad thoughts right now. He was definitely going to show up. At least, he had better. As she walked into her room to get her dress, she saw the new little cat chasing Crookshanks across the floor. That made Hermione temporarily forget her dilemma and smile.
She put on her dress, but couldn't manage all the buttons up the back by herself. She was about to call out for one of the house elves, when one appeared at her door before she could. "Miss Granger, your guests are arriving."
Hermione opened the door and asked the servant if Draco was home yet. The elf shook his large head no. She was about to shut her bedroom door when Harry and Ron appeared at the threshold. She smiled at them and said, "Just in time, I need someone to button my dress." Ron stepped in, went around to her back, and finished buttoning her dress.
He then kissed her cheek and said, "You look bloody beautiful, Hermione." Harry came up and gave her a kiss as well and just smiled his concurrence at that remark.
Hermione asked, "What time is it?"
"Nearly time," Harry said.
"Have you guys seen Malfoy?" she asked.
"No, why, isn't he here?" Harry asked frostily.
Before Hermione could respond, Blaise Zabini appeared at the bedroom door. "Hey chaps, mind if I speak to the bride for a moment; alone?" Before they could answer in the affirmative, he pushed them out the door and shut it tight.
Blaise entered the room, whistled, and then said, "You look lovely."
"Cut the crap, Zabini, where's Malfoy?" she asked crossly.
"Well, Granger, that's the thing, I really don't know. As soon as I got here, I looked for him and couldn't locate the bastard. I asked one of your elves if they had seen him lately and they said he left last night. Now, he didn't come to my house, or to the manor; because I already checked. I also checked your old flat. What happened? He wouldn't leave you at the altar, would he?" Zabini concluded.
"I hope not," she said quietly.
"What happened?" Blaise asked while sitting on the bed.
"We discussed everything he was withholding from me, we fought, but I thought we still left each other under the assumption that the wedding was a go, but maybe I was wrong," Hermione said flatly.
"He told you everything?" Blaise said unbelievably.
"Yes," she responded.
"Interesting," he responded.
"What if he doesn't show?" Hermione said with a tear falling from her eye.
"Do you want me to go down and tell the guests to leave?" Blaise asked. "I would love to tell all those former little Gryffindors to go to hell and not come back," he tried to joke. "Or, you could just marry me instead."
She walked up to him and hugged him. That shocked him to the core. She walked to the door to tell Harry and Ron to tell the guests to leave; there would be no wedding today. As she walked out of the room and approached her two friends, who were standing at the top of the stairs, Draco suddenly appeared out of nowhere and grabbed Hermione's hand and said, "Let's get this bloody wedding over."
He was practically dragging her down the stairs, with Harry and Ron in tow. As if he just remembered that her friends were supposed to walk her down the stairs, he turned to them and said, "We won't need your services today, Pothead and Weasel boy. We can make it down the steps ourselves." Harry glared at Malfoy and Ron looked like he was about to hit him. However, Hermione looked at her two best friends and just nodded at them to go on downstairs.
She looked at Malfoy, who had at least managed to put his dress robes on, and asked, "Where have you been?" in hushed tones.
"Don't have time to make chit-chat, Granger, we have people waiting. We're getting married, you know?" He then started back down the steps holding onto her hand. One of the house elves magically started music and Draco yelled out, "Stop that damn racket this instant. I have a hell of a hangover and that music is giving me a headache!"
He walked to the bottom of the stairs, still pulling Hermione along, when she came to a complete stop. "Let me go," she said pleading.
"No, it's our wedding day and if I want to hold your bloody, fucking, hand, I will, so stop whining and get your arse down here," he said. He yanked her hand to make her take the last two steps of the stairs and she almost stumbled.
Harry walked up to them and said, "Let her go, you git."
"Go to hell, Potter, just once and for all, go to fucking hell," Draco said while running his free hand through his hair.
The Officiate didn't know whether to start the ceremony or not. Finally, Hermione spoke. "Go home everyone; there'll be no wedding today."
"Who the hell are you, Granger, to decide whether or not there'll be a wedding?" Draco yelled at her.
Blaise walked up to his friend and tried to pull his hand from Hermione's, for which he still had a death grip, but Draco gave him such a glare that Blaise thought better and took two steps back.
"Start the fucking ceremony," Draco told the Officiate.
The little old wizard looked at Draco, then to Hermione, and said, "I don't think so."
Draco drew his wand at the little man, and said, "I SAID START THE CEREMONY!"
Before Draco knew what was happening, about twenty people drew their wands, and they were all pointed directly at him. Soon everyone was yelling at him and his friends drew their wands and started yelling at Hermione's friends. Hermione simply stood there in silence. The whole display was surreal. It was as if she was watching the whole scene from the sidelines, instead of being a participant.
Finally, she yelled, "STOP IT! EVERYONE STOP IT!" Without a doubt, that stop all the yelling and name-calling, but not one person put their wand away, including Malfoy. "Let go of my hand, Draco. I'll marry you, but stop being a prat," she said calmly, as if she was asking him how he would like his tea. Malfoy let go of her hand and put his wand away. Soon all the other guests put their wands away as well.
Harry stepped up to Hermione and said, "You can't marry him, Hermione."
"I promised him, Harry," she offered. She turned back toward the Officiate, not once making eye contact with Draco, and told the old wizard to start the ceremony. He started the ceremony, but Hermione didn't hear one word he said. She was having an outer body experience. Inside she was crying, and screaming, and begging Draco to tell her what was happening. Outside, she stood there pliant, although it was all subterfuge.
The Officiate rushed through the ceremony and when he got to the part where he told the bride and groom to kiss, Hermione turned toward Draco and said, "Don't you dare kiss me."
"We'll do this right, Granger," he seethed, and he took her command as a challenge. He grabbed both her upper arms and pulled her toward his body.
"I mean it, Malfoy, I'm not kissing you," she declared.
"That doesn't mean I'm not kissing you," he spat. Therefore, he kissed her. He assaulted her lips with a fury and a hunger that in no way held passion, only brute force. He kissed her roughly and she struggled under his assault. Soon most of the wedding guests were once again shouting. Mostly, they were yelling at Draco to let go of Hermione.
He released his fingers from her upper arms, leaving behind the start of bruises, and put one hand in her hair and one hand around her waist. He tried to deepen the kiss, but she resisted. She kept her mouth shut tight, so in anger he bit her bottom lip hard, and when she went to cry out in pain, he forced his tongue in her mouth. She fought him and began to whimper in pain and humiliation. He was still assaulting her lips with as much abuse as he could, and finally Harry said, "Let her go or die, Malfoy."
He continued his kiss, for that was what it was, it was his kiss, not theirs. She took no ownership in the exploit. Finally, to save his friend's life, since Potter was about to end it, Blaise took hold of Malfoy's arm and pried it from her waist and said, "Stop it, Malfoy!"
He finally let her go and she stumbled back away from him with a look of fear, mingled with disgust. Her lips were red and swollen and there was blood at the corner of her mouth from where he bit her. Her arms already had bruises on them and her hair was falling all over the place.
"Let's go have a toast to the happy couple!" Draco exclaimed as he pushed past Hermione and headed toward the living room, where the reception was to take place.
"Everyone go home. Leave now, please," Hermione said in a steady voice. Ron reiterated what she said to everyone and they all started to leave. Finally, only Harry, Ron and Blaise remained. Hermione ran up the stairs with Harry and Ron on her heels. Blaise sauntered into the lounge, only to find Malfoy sitting in the middle of the table with a bottle of champagne in his hand.
"That was a bloody good show, Malfoy," Blaise said with a smirk, "Just when I thought you could never top yourself, you do. I mean, you're already the biggest bastard I know, but this really takes the cake."
"Oh, do you want some wedding cake?" a drunken Malfoy asked.
"Not right now. Tell me what's going on here? Why are you acting like this? If anyone should have been upset here today, it was Hermione. Although, I'm sure she's upset now," Blaise told him.
When Draco didn't respond, Blaise yelled at him, "What the hell was that about, you stupid, bloody wanker?"
"Oh, haven't you heard?" Draco said, almost as if he was regaling a bedtime story to a child, "I told Granger all about the stupid, bloody, pureblood, marriage rubbish and she took it rather well, considering."
When no more information was forthcoming, Blaise said, "So?"
"Well," Draco began, "fucking Potter had to remind me that a lie of omission is still a lie, and apparently I forgot to tell her everything, so he took it upon himself to tell her."
"What did you omit to tell her?" Blaise asked curiously.
Draco stood on top of the table and started kicking things off the top, as if he was playing football. He said, "Oh, just this and that. Like the fact that if a pureblood marries a Muggle-born, not only do they not have any sanctions imposed on them, but they actually get a cash settlement." Then Draco jumped off the table and threw the bottle of champagne across the room, where it shattered against the mantle.
"So, you didn't tell her that part. So what? It's not like that's why you're marrying her," Blaise tried to point out.
"Stupid Potter told her. He told me if I didn't, then he would," Draco whined.
"I don't think he told her, and even if he did, it must not matter to her because she was all ready to marry you anyway. So, the way I see it, you just ruined your wedding for nothing, you stupid fool," said Blaise, chastising him.
Draco went to get another bottle of champagne and said, "Of course he told her. She was probably only going through with the ceremony to save face." Then he walked up on the table again and yelled, "That's what everyone will think anyway. They won't think this is a real marriage. They'll think she only married me for my money and they'll think I only married her because she's a Mudblood." He walked to the center of the table and at that moment, he failed to realize that Hermione and her friends had just entered the room. "That's right, Zabini! I just married Granger because she's a stupid, bloody Mudblood and now the Ministry better give me my cash settlement! Give me my money you bastards!"
Zabini, who saw the trio enter, said, "You're a wanker, Malfoy. You don't deserve her." He left the room, and as Draco turned to watch his former friend leave, that was when he saw her standing in the doorway. She gasped and started to run out of the room. He jumped back down off the table, but slipped on the wet floor and fell on his back. He momentary couldn't move. Harry and Ron walked up to him to pick him up. He feared it was so they could drop him back down on his arse.
"I never told her that part, Malfoy," Harry said without emotion. "I assume you didn't either, at least not until right now. Stay away from her. We'll get this marriage annulled. Get the hell out of here." Malfoy swayed as he stood and started toward the front door and then decided to run after her. He started up the stairs, when without warning he was hit with a curse. He fell back down the stairs, unconscious. Harry and Ron, who had both drawn their wands, looked at Zabini in shock.
Blaise was standing over Draco's body, with his wand out, and said, "Someone had to do it, and I rather enjoyed that." He then told Harry and Ron he would take Draco to his flat to sleep off the alcohol and the stunning spell.
As soon as they left, Harry told Ron to go see to their wives and he would stay with Hermione. Ron however, refused. "She's my friend too, Harry. I'll stay as well."
After the fiasco:
Harry and Ron had no choice but to sit outside her bedroom door, with their backs against the wall, in the hallway. The reason was that Hermione had locked her door using who knows how many locking spells. Several times one or both men would put their ears to the door, but not once did they hear her cry. Maybe she had put up a silencing spell as well. They would never know. Occasionally, one of them would say things at the door like, "Hermione, it'll be okay," or "Hermione please let us in," but again, no response was forthcoming from the witch locked in the bedroom.
After a couple of hours, they found out the hard way that there was no silencing spell on the room. They heard the sounds of breaking glass, breaking furniture, and yelling. It sounded like Hurricane Hermione. She finally screamed a gut wrenching scream that sounded as if it was emitted from the depths of her soul. After that, silence was again their only indication that she was in the room.
After a few hours, Blaise Zabini came walking back upstairs. Ron and Harry stood up and he told them, "I'm alone, don't worry. Draco's sound asleep at my flat." He then walked up to the door and said, "Hermione, its Blaise. May I come in?"
To Harry's and Ron's astonishment, the door opened and Zabini was admitted entrance. He closed the door behind him and sat next to Hermione on the bed.
"That was an interesting wedding," he said casually, as if he was mentioning the weather. When she didn't respond, he said, "Draco thought Harry told you about the Muggle-born clause of the law. He came here tonight fully with the thought that you wouldn't be here. He thought you would leave him at the altar. He told me he was shocked when he saw you standing there in your dress. He didn't know what to do."
"So he ruined our wedding?" Hermione finally spoke.
"Yeah, I guess that's what he decided was best. He probably thought you would stop it at some point, so he might as well be the bastard we all know he can be. I don't know what goes on in his head," Blaise said truthfully. Then he said, "What you heard him say tonight in the dining room, about him only marrying you because you are a Mudblood, well, that was taken out of context. He just said that because he thought that was what you thought. For what its worth and I realize it's not worth much at this point, he really does love you."
"I know," answered Hermione meekly.
"You know I lied to you too, Hermione," he told her, while holding her hand.
"Yeah? What was your lie?" she asked.
"That day at the restaurant when you asked me if Draco ever showed any interest in you before you started dating, I told you no; that was a lie. I remember back in fourth year after the Tri-Wizard Yule ball, Draco and I, under strictest secrecy, confided to each other that you were the most beautiful girl there that night. Then after this whole pureblood marriage shite came to pass, he said he had always fancied you and that if it was the last thing he was going to do, he was going to make you his. He said that now he had the perfect excuse to date you and if any pureblood wizard questioned his choice, he could just pretend it was because of the law." At that, Hermione turned to look at him. "But, he confided his true feeling to me and me alone. He said he really liked you, and, I know that he did. Also, I know that he now loves you, as much as Draco Malfoy can love someone, he loves you." With that, Blaise stood to leave and ended with, "I'm not saying forgive him right away. You should make him suffer a little, but then you should forgive him." With that, the former Slytherin left the room.
As Blaise was leaving, Harry and Ron took that opportunity to slip in the room. Hermione was curled in a ball on the bed at that point, but not crying. She was just merely there. Harry came up to her and started rubbing her back. "Hermione, come home with me tonight."
She sat up and said, "This is my home. Draco gave me this house as a wedding present. I'm not leaving."
"Then we'll both stay here with you tonight," Ron said.
"Fine, I don't care. Sleep in one of the other rooms, just leave me alone for now." She went to the bathroom to slip out of her dress when she remembered the stupid buttons. "Ron, will you help me with the buttons again?" she asked. He nodded and went up to her and unbuttoned her dress. She turned around, said, "Thank you", and walked into the bathroom. Harry and Ron took that as their invitation to leave, so they walked out of the room, shut the door, and went to one of the guestrooms as she suggested.
Hermione pulled the covers over her body. She felt numb. She still had yet to cry. She had screamed, cursed, and destroyed most of the room, but no tears. She didn't even know for what reason she should cry. Should she cry because he ruined their wedding day? Should she cry because he had not been completely truthful to her? On the other hand, should she cry because she did this to him? She caused him to be so insecure of her feeling for him, because he was so afraid of her leaving him, that he felt he should act like a bastard to save face.
Whatever…she was tired. She didn't even feel like putting on a nightgown. She was still in her knickers and bra. Crookshanks suddenly jumped up on her bed and she said, "You still love me, don't you, boy? Even if Malfoy doesn't love me anymore, at least I still have you. This was my wedding day, old boy. Did you know that?" She asked the cat as she stroked his ears. He jumped off the bed and left her alone. "Even you leave me, huh?" she said, and then finally she started to cry.
In the midst of her tears, she didn't see the dark figure that sat on the floor in the corner of the bedroom. The intruder was watching her cry. He heard her come back into the room, talk to her cat, and then start to cry. The trespasser stood and walked up to her bed. He sat on the bed and said, "Why are you crying, Granger?"
She didn't flinch. She didn't seem surprised that he was there, even though she was. "Why do you always ask me why I'm crying?" she asked, without looking at him.
"I wouldn't have to ask that if you weren't always crying," he said back to her.
She started crying harder and started rocking herself back and forth, seeking comfort from herself, or some unknown source. "Why did you ruin our wedding?" she asked.
"I had nothing better to do today," he said flippantly.
"I hate you," she responded.
"So you think. I think if you hated me, you wouldn't be crying," he told her.
"Why are you here?" she asked, while still hiding her face in her pillow.
"It's my wedding night. It is tradition for the newlyweds to spend their wedding night together. Didn't you know that, Hermione?" he asked with an air of sarcasm.
"Get out of my house," she said as she sat up and pointed toward the door.
"No," he said plainly. She tried to kick him off the bed, but he pressed his body against her legs to stop her.
"Harry and Ron are right down the hall. All I have to do is shout for them and they'll forcibly remove you, so get out!" She lay back down, covered her face with her hands and started weeping again.
"Go ahead and scream. I don't care. I'm not leaving. This is my house, too, and I have every right to be here," he said softly, as he lay down beside her. He began to stroke her arm. After a moment, he pulled back the covers and crawled in beside her. She was still weeping and he cradled her in his arms.
"I'm so sorry, Draco," she said through her tears.
"Goodness, Granger, you didn't do anything, why are you sorry?" he said soothingly.
"For doubting how you felt about me. How you feel about me. I know you love me. I'm the one that ruined everything. I made everything so difficult for you at every turn. I don't even know why you stuck by me," she whispered.
"I stuck by you because I love you, Hermione," he explained.
"It's too late," she told him.
"No, it's not," he told her back.
"Yes, it is. You need to go. We can stay married, but it'll be in name only. I don't want you here." She cried harder. He sat up in the bed and with his wand, he locked the door and said a silencing charm, just in case she did try to yell for her friends to come and remove him.
He fell back on the pillows and turned to face her. "I don't think you really want me to go. You were just crying for me. I think I'll stay."
"Please, please leave," she sobbed.
"No, I told you, it's my wedding night and I'm spending it with my wife." He pulled her to him and started kissing her tear soaked cheeks. Then he said, "Tell me what do you really want, Hermione? What do you want deep in your heart of hearts?"
"I want to forgive you, but I don't think I can," she said, looking up at his face.
"I don't care for your forgiveness, so no worries there. I just want your love," he said and he started to kiss her face again. He kissed her forehead, then both cheeks. She didn't push him away.
After a moment, she pulled away, put her hands on his chest and said, "I want you to leave, you want to stay. We're at an impasse." She shut her eyes and took a deep breath.
"We have been through too much, Hermione, to let this put us asunder," he said softly. "I love you. I know you love me. We'll be all right. I don't care what everyone else thinks or what everyone might say. I just know that we're meant to be together. I need you as I need oxygen to breathe, and water to live. I need you. I love you." He started to kiss her all over again and she started crying harder.
It actually felt good, to be held by him. To be kissed by him. She loved him so much. Even if she never forgave him, one truth remained imminent; she loved him. So she kissed him for all it was worth, and to Draco, it was worth a lot. That was what he had wanted to do all day, all week. Just hold her in his arms and kiss her senseless. It felt so good to hold her, to touch her, to kiss her.
He moved from his side to his back and pulled her on top of him. She was overwhelming him with her force and apparent lust. She was aggressive instead of reserved. She was consumed with her want for him. He wanted her tonight and for all time. She wanted him as well and was eager to show him as much. As she lay on top of his stomach, she nuzzled, kissed, and licked his neck. She sat up and ripped off his shirt. She fell back against him and straddled his body.
"I love you," she said hoarsely.
"I love you," he breathlessly answered back.
His head swam as she buried her face in his neck and her lips assaulted his. He trembled as she licked her way down his torso, to his belly, and back up again. She pulled at the waistband of his trousers and he helped her remove them. She sat back on his hips and he stroked her spine with his hands. He reached up and removed her bra. He sat up as well and buried his face in her ample breasts. He sucked, kissed, and teased, as he never had before.
She pulled away from him and removed her knickers. Then she sat back down on his body and moved down to his aching need and envelope him in her mouth. Her tongue swirled his tip, and he felt like he was falling off the edge of a cliff. He shuddered underneath her ministrations and the sensation of his pleasure sent shockwaves through them both. He wondered how much more he could take before his whole body exploded. He reached down to cup her face and pulled her off him. He pulled her back up his body, wanting to feel closer to her. He turned her over and put his body on top of hers.
He could spend his entire life languishing her with kisses on her luscious lips. He moved his lips from hers and brought them to her swollen breasts, which were begging to be kissed. He continued to flick his tongue back and forth between her breasts, teasing her nipples, making her cry out for his touch. She rocked her hips and he placed his hand between them and brought her to near orgasm with his hand.
Her skin was soft, warm, and moist against his mouth and hands. He kissed every inch of her. He put both hands on her cheeks and smiled at her. She smiled back. He leaned in to kiss her as he slid himself into her. The pleasure he felt was nothing compared to the pleasure he was giving her. She felt it in her soul.
He rocked his hips against hers, seeking the closeness that he knew they and they alone could share. He was so deep inside her that she ached to her core. She was shocked when he smiled at her again. How could he smile at a time like this? What she didn't know, was that he was smiling because at that exact moment he felt happier than he had ever felt his entire life.
He arched his back and he felt her clutching at his shoulders. The moment of their mutual climax was a defining moment. They were now one. With that single act of lovemaking, they were truly one. One soul, one life, and one being, forever. When they were finished, he held her to his chest and traced her face with one finger. He could hear her heartbeat. She could hear his. He leaned up on his elbow and stared at her as she reclined on her back. He pushed her hair out of her face. He felt an utter contentment that he never thought was possible. She felt it as well.
He cupped her face with his hand and said, "Now tell me what you want, Hermione. What do you really want?" She reached for the hand on her face and kissed his palm. He put the same hand to rest on her stomach.
She answered him the only way she knew how. She leaned up on her arm and facing him, she kissed him sweetly, and said, "I want you."
(Coming up next, the third part, "A Third Week in the Life.")