Disclaimer: I don't own Potter, Harry Potter.
A/N: I would just like to thank all of the readers and reviewers, even you creepers. This was my first fic on the site and I'm glad it did as well as it did. To soothe some the question I've been messaged repeatedly… No, there will not be a sequel. That would be overkill. And what happens in the epilogue happens and you can fill in the blanks for yourself. Thanks and enjoy!
"Really?" Draco asked as the leather bound book thumped down in front of him. The coffee table's legs creaked under the weight and Draco's coffee slid eight centimeters to the right, stopping when the cup hit the book. Silently he was thankful that the table wasn't glass. He looked up at Hermione with a slack mouth and unbridled surprise.
Her hands were placed strategically on her hips and there was an odd look on her face. A mix of surprise…and some annoyance, probably at his immense surprise.
"Really" she said coming around the table and sitting next to him. The cushions of her couch sank beneath her bum and Draco slid towards her. The whole world seemed to be tilting more than usual today. He made a mental note to buy Hermione a new couch, one that hadn't fallen through.
"If you want to do it, then I support you" he said clasping his hands with exuberance and placing them on his knees, a perfect example of male attentiveness.
"Do you encourage me?" Hermione asked looking at the book with sudden disdain. She then looked to Draco. His features were soft and good natured, grey eyes twinkling, blonde hair disheveled. Hermione felt as though he wasn't really taking her seriously, this worried her further. Most times she hardly cared if he was listening, since it wasn't in his nature to do so anyway, but she wanted him to be hearing her now.
"If you want to do it, then I encourage you" Draco clarified reaching for his coffee.
"That doesn't work too well does it? Why would I need your encouragement if I have already decided to do it?" she asked earnestly.
"Well" Draco said motioning to the book with his pinky while bringing the coffee to his lips, "It seems as though you've already made up your mind"
Hermione pursed her lips and leaned back on the couch. "Yeah, I suppose you're right"
Draco almost dropped his coffee into his lap. He turned to Hermione in amazement "Say that again" he asked with a smirk.
"No…because you're only right in a matter of logic. Logic is fairly easy to grasp" Hermione retorted sitting back up "it's in ethics where you lack".
"So, who will publish it?" he asked deciding to ignore her comment and avoid a silly spat. They had been pretty good in the past two months. They worked through every little issue with as much ease as possible. His naivety and selfishness were just things Hermione would have to deal with. Just as he would have to handle her insecurities and perpetual fears in ridiculous things.
"I don't know…I've been taking the book around to a few publishers and they all seem keen to print it. "I just have to find someone who'll adhere to my demands of secrecy" Hermione said with a grimace.
"You're going to be a ghostwriter?" Draco asked in surprise.
"Draco, do you know the definition of a ghostwriter?" Hermione asked in exasperation.
She rolled her eyes and decided to humor him "Something like that…I'll let my editor take full credit" Hermione said.
"Why would do you that?" Draco asked with a frown. He couldn't understand the point of publishing a book without wanting the credit.
"I don't want my name plastered to it. I don't want people to know it's about me. My friends know… that's good enough. I don't need the world at my door" she explained with a sigh.
"Then why publish at all?" Draco asked.
Hermione's lips turned up slightly into a sad smile. Draco could see the thoughts rolling behind her eyes. "I want people to read this and feel okay. I want people to know that these things do happen and not just in war, but in everyday life. And I want everyone to know they aren't alone… I want to give comfort to others…because it's not important who the book is about, what's important is the message it portrays" Hermione replied smoothly, Draco could tell she had given it a lot of thought.
"Wow…that's deep" Draco smiled.
"I thought so too" Hermione grinned.
"Well, that ruined everything noble about this. Now you just seem conceited" he said with a sneer.
"I'm conceited?" Hermione asked with raised brows.
"Yes you are. Keep in mind I never said you were more vain than I, I just mentioned that you were" Draco said leaning into her and placing his hand on her knee. Hermione rolled her eyes. "How about a little…"
"First, you call me conceited, not vain. And second…what? …you want hanky-panky? You know we have to get to Harry's for the rehearsal dinner by seven. I don't know that I have time for the silly games you want to play" Hermione said removing his hand from her knee. Draco pouted, extremely, his bottom lip was out far enough to be a hazard to her eyes.
"Please?" he said softly. His hand returned to her knee and slowly crawled upward to her thigh.
"Hmm" Hermione said turning her head away from him.
"Don't be coy, you know you want me" Draco said in annoyance.
"Who's conceited now?" Hermione asked.
"Both of us are, alright" he stood and swept her off the couch, "Now lets end that conversation and go have a nice romp before Potter's boring rehearsal"
Hermione squealed loudly and make herself as small as possible as he walked through the door. It would be the first time he had smashed her head into the frame; accidentally he would insist.
Draco dropped her on the bed and growled.
A moment passed in silence.
Hermione burst out in laughter. "YOU GROWLED!" she laughed with tears in her eyes. Turning on her side Hermione smothered her laughed into a pillow.
"It was due to the effort of lifting you" Draco shot back.
Hermione stopped laughing.
"About time" he said with a smile jumping on top of her. "I only said that to get you to shut up. I don't think your weight is important" he assured her.
"Should I gain a hundred pounds to prove your hypothesis?" Hermione asked with a wink.
"Would your breasts be bigger?" Draco asked with mild interest.
Hermione smacked him across the head, "Maybe" she admitted, "But the rest of me would be bigger too"
"Then I retract my previous statement" Draco mumbled as he began to unbutton her blouse.
"Can I rip this one?" he asked in frustration after the third impossible button.
"No" Hermione said snappily "You bought this one for me and I like it, I'll unbutton it" she said sitting up and undoing the rest of the buttons. She folded the blouse and placed it on the bedside table "You know, I could be getting ready now instead of wasting time".
"Wow, that killed the mood" Draco mused.
"Imagine how it will be when you're old" Hermione said unbuttoning his shirt now, quickly and carefully.
"I imagine it will be somewhat the same. Only you'll be wrinkly" Draco pondered with a smile.
Hermione let the comment slide. She didn't care to know if Draco actually thought he'd be as smooth as a baby in his fifties. But what really shook her and left her without answer was the fact that he had imagined her in the future. Her and him, together. Hermione hadn't given all of this much thought. Lately she had just been trying to enjoy everyday as best she could. Draco had practically moved in already. He spent five nights out of seven at her place anyway. Everything seemed too good to be true, and she didn't want to ruin it by overanalyzing anything.
Draco lay down gently against Hermione; his hands crawled into her hair. He kissed her cheek, her jaw, and slowly made his way down her neck. He could hardly believe that he could only see Hermione in the future. It was something so unlike him, but it was his mind all the same. He didn't really want anyone else. After two months of reconnecting and truly connecting he began to realize that they needed one another. Their faults melted away when they were together and everyday was easier to bear knowing he would see Hermione in the evening. It was his selfishness and possessiveness that shoved him closer and closer to Hermione. But as long as Hermione agreed with his faults then it was all okay. That was the answer he had given himself. It was all just too good to be true. Not a single thought of another woman crossed his mind since he had met Hermione…
He kissed her collarbone while he carefully removing her bra, just another difficult barrier. Draco was not a man of dexterity in his fingers when it came to tiny little clasps, they were just so inconvenient.
Her body amazed him. There was something so resilient about it. The skin was soft and smooth, but the clear white lines that slid across her body were ever present. He kissed each and every one of these scars that trailed her chest and stomach. He rested his lips on her bellybutton.
Hermione's hands knotted in his hair, she didn't want to cry, but sometimes it hurt how sensitive Draco was. His pain was still clear. He was in pain not only for her, but for himself as well. "Someday we'll fill this space with a new child" he promised looking up at her. Hermione smiled warmly and thought she just might cry after all.
His hands continued downward slipping off her pants and underwear and then his own. He shifted back up and rested his elbows on either side of her head, and he just smiled. "That's a little creepy" she smiled in return.
"Then I probably shouldn't tell you I do this while you sleep?" he grinned.
She laughed and pulled him down to kiss him. Her lips gently pressed against his, her hands slid down his shoulders and to his lower back, gently pressing with her fingers. Draco let his left hand drop down her neck. He fingered her collar bone lovingly before moving down even further. Damn Potter and his stupid rehearsal dinner. Potter always seemed to screw up any sex he might have received. Potter was always at the door, on the phone, needing Hermione.
Hermione's hands slipped down his backside and all thoughts of Potter vanished from his head. This was probably best, it was not wise to think of someone else at a time like this, there could be many unpleasant results.
Draco's hand covered her breast, kneading softly and in a calculated manner. He looked up at Hermione's face and almost fell off the bed. She was biting her lip, but it looked as though she was biting back a laugh. He frowned at her, she smiled back. "I didn't want to ruin your concentration, the look on your face was so intense" she whispered with a twitchy smile.
"Okay, enough talking" Draco said rolling his eyes. The girl never shut up, and sometimes it was far more appropriate to keep in silence. His thumb flicked over her nipple and he got the reaction he wanted. She moaned softly. He bit his own lip then to keep from
a: laughing evilly and
b: passing out at sight of her pleasure.
His hand switched as he gently touched her other breast while his tongue roamed over her whole chest. He could feel her trembling beneath him. Sometimes he thought she was easy to please, but then he remembered that it was him who was amazing. He could feel her hand slowly stroking him.
He tried to ignore the feeling as best he could but he was beginning to become distracting with her ministrations and was finding himself doing very little for her.
Draco's fingers slipped between Hermione's legs; "Damn" she whispered removing her hands. Draco shook his head clear of the fuzzy pleasure from moments before.
"Did you just remember something or are you writhing in the throes of passion?" he asked with a wicked smile; noting the extremely pink tone of her skin and slightly agape mouth.
"No talking" Hermione said pushing him off and rolling him over on to his back.
"No time for games, can't be late for Potter" Draco said quickly pushing her again onto her back and slipping in unexpectedly. Hermione gasped loudly, initially she was peeved, but quickly her annoyance melted into pure bliss.
"How fast can you be Mr. Malfoy?" she asked breathlessly as her eyes flicked to the clock above his head.
"What? You want me to be a sixteen year old?" he asked just as breathlessly. It was perfectly painful to remain so still inside her while Hermione talked so casually to him.
"Come on then" she said thrusting her hips towards him.
"Alright then" Draco replied pushing in. Her hands wrapped around his back and her legs around his waist. He didn't exactly want to finish it off quickly, it left no time for him to show off. But Draco understood he had picked an awkward time for sex and really he was lucky to have her comply at all.
With every thrust he gave, Hermione had one to match. The moved in sync, well practiced in their two months together. Slowly he could feel the tension in her body grow just as he reached a painful peak. Draco thrust a few times more until he felt the tension in Hermione's back unwind, and then he let himself go as well. "Oh fuck" he whispered dropping down on her.
"Most people would say 'I love you', but your exclamation was nice too" Hermione said pushing him off of her and crawling out of bed.
"Wait…where are you going?" he whined stretching out his hand towards her.
"I need to shower" she said walking to the bathroom, "You need to clean up, and then I think you should read the additional chapter in my book at the end" Hermione said flippantly. Then she walked into the bathroom and shut the door.
"No" Draco moaned watching her go. He slowly sat up, his body was dead tired. It took more effort to finish quickly than it took during a longer romp. Not that they had romped…because he and Hermione had…not romped. That much was for sure. They had done something entirely different. Regardless of how long it took, how ridiculous it seemed, Draco knew it wasn't something insignificant any longer. Every little action of affections meant mountains more now.
He slouched out of bed in all his naked glory and walked out into the sitting room grabbing a robe hanging by the door to cover himself with, in case of a sneak floo guest. He resumed his position on the couch. Draco picked his wand off the table and reheated his coffee. After a few gulps he picked up Hermione's book and turned to the end. Flicking past the last few pages he noticed it was all new content, he came upon the page titled epilogue. Draco smiled and began to read.
He sat reading her book, unsure if he wanted to ever remind himself of those horrors again. But he knew they would not leave, whether he recited them nightly, or kept them locked in his tin heart. She knew this chapter was for him, and he would know it too. From the first words she talked of him compassionately and honestly.
His words had littered the pages of her book, his influence in every paragraph, but still he deserved his own chapter. There in that chapter, he read about how much he had changed her life. Her words were plain but earnest, she meant nothing fancy, but she meant what she said. Her thoughts on how lonely she was, the lengths she had considered going to in order to appease her pain, these all caused a familiar rumble in his chest. His heart stilled when he read that now these troubling ideas had left her.
Words of devotion, respect, and adorations rumbled onward for many a page more. But he did not bore of these words, for they were hers. So he continued reading, then he stumbled upon a sentence that tripped him face first into a mental wall.
"I love him" she wrote in the second last paragraph. Three simple words he had not expected to see in her book. Onward she wrote about how he had been there for her through the roughest times in her life, and he had accepted her. Yes he had been, and still was selfish, and a little slow and uncertain in matters of the heart, but he meant well. It took him longer than most, but at least when he felt it, he truly felt it. And she loved him, and every single one of his aggravating flaws.
She loved him. These words resounded in his head.
He was shocked, but not terribly so. Somehow he knew she loved him. He knew this, because he loved her too. And the moment she came into the room he would walk towards her and take her in his arms and tell her he loved her. He didn't want to go on for another moment without telling her these words. And he wouldn't want to go on for another moment without proposing to this woman, because he knew there was no other for him.
He turned to the last page, the final page of this saga in her life. There no more upon this page but four words he himself had wrote before.
"You are not forgotten"
"You like it?" Hermione asked nervously leaning against the doorframe in her towel.
Draco turned around and broke into a bright grin "It's brilliant"