Title: World Enough and Time.
Author's Note: Another attempt at a one-shot featuring vignettes of Draco and Hermione!
Summary: He thinks she's like the roots, holding him down, holding him steady.
Disclaimer: I.Am.Poor. Please don't sue; we all know JK Rowling owns Harry Potter. We all know she created a disaster with the RHr ship. Beware – I have grenades, and I am not afraid to bomb that ship.
World Enough and Time.
i). The Quality of Nature or It's Dangerous Hugging Trees.
There's a wild tree by her cottage.
It's a good tree. A strong, steady, sturdy tree.
The first time she had invited him to her home, he looked at that tree and knew – knew that he would love her for the rest of his life. Just like that. There were no fireworks, no blinding white light, no nirvana-like, 'om-shanti-shanti' epiphany. It was there, like the sun dawning on a new day, it was constant and beautiful, and nothing less than perfection.
He just knew.
And he got all this from a great, big, bloody tree.
He didn't tell her at the time, as he stood on her doorstep, and waited for her to lower the wards. They'd only just had their sixth date, and he didn't want to scare her off by declaring his love for her and her tree.
Could a person fall in love with a tree?
He wasn't too sure if he wanted to be a tree-hugger, but hey, if a wizard could hump a goat and get away with it, then he could damn well hug a tree without recrimination!
He'd have to thank it later.
Knowing him and his abysmal luck, he'd probably send her running off the nearest cliff if he told her – or worse – she might have hexed his manly bits, and he needed those to wank and procreate with, thank-you-very-much.
So he didn't say anything.
Instead, he followed her into the dimly lit Tudor cottage, and managed to suavely persuade her to let him shag her silly.
She had no less than four earth-shattering orgasms, and he could safely say that if all else failed, and she didn't fall in love with him, he would just have to lick her clit until she did. It wouldn't have been a difficult feat. He could do some very wicked things with his tongue; it wasn't just used for wittily insulting reckless Gryffindors, and making pathetic Longbottom-esque figures cry, you know.
So there it was.
He loved his bushy-headed, spewing, doe-eyed Granger, just like he loved her stupid tree. Because she was the roots to his tree. She held him up – come rain or shine – she supported him, and fed him life.
Everything was so much more simple, knowing that she was there.
ii). The Collision of Souls or I Dream of Snakes.
He liked the way her lip curled when she saw him naked.
It wasn't a sneer, it wasn't disdain; he had nothing to fear when she curled her lip. Because he knew what it meant. It meant that she was on the verge of pouncing.
He'd never have known there was such a dominatrix, behind that bookish exterior.
It was hot. Too hot.
Really, fucking sexy.
A bit scary too, but that's ok. He could handle it. He was a Slytherin, after all.
He was Slytherin enough to know that the gleam in her eyes kept him anchored to the present. You wouldn't believe it, looking at him now, but he used to have trouble with his past. The nightmares were the worst. Red eyes and massive snakes. Whimpers of please; Him. And screams; Hers.
But somehow, in this cosmic joke of a world, he'd managed to earn her forgiveness. And he'd earned enough of her love.
She allowed their souls to collide, and he was happy to mesh them together, until they were indistinguishable.
Because he knew she would.
Because she knew he loved her. They'd collided, and it was magnificent.
iii). The Steady World or Roots Glorious Roots.
"Draco Lucius Abraxas Malfooooy!"
"I think you've reached a new pitch, love. That's got to be one for the record books."
"Grr. How could you?!"
"Er… I didn't do it."
"I have no idea what you're shrieking about, my luscious harridan."
"Shrieking? I'm not shrieking, I'm furious! And don't call me that."
"Shall I call you the sexy, gorgeous, mother-of-the-fruit-of-my-loins, then?"
"You think I'm..? Ack, no! It won't work, Draco."
"Worked last time."
"Well it won't happen again, and you can stop waggling your eyebrows at me."
"Thought I'd give it a shot before you rip me a new one."
"You gave our child, our child, three bars of Honeyduke's chocolate!"
"She was hungry, so soot me."
"It's shoot, and how can she be hungry right after dinner? It's bed time, and she's still bouncing off the walls. Literally! I had to put cushioning charms on everything in her room,"
"She gave me The Look."
"You know; The Look."
"You've totally lost me."
"The one where her eyes get all gooey, and round, and doe-like! It's like she memorised it off that Muggle movie!"
"That cat with shoes."
"From the Shrek movie?"
"You mean to tell me, that our five-year old daughter copied that look, and that's how she managed to wrangle chocolate from you?"
"You do realise that she's manipulated you, don't you?"
"And you don't have a problem with that?"
"Not at all, my bushy wife. She's training to become the consummate Slytherin."
"So… Any chance of a quickie?"
"What? She's probably still bouncing off the furniture, and I'd say we've got a good twenty minutes of snake-lovin' fun."
"I don't think – "
" – Come on, root. Don't make me beg. You know I'm rubbish at it."
"I'll never understand why you insist on calling me that wretched name."
"It's because you are. The roots to me."
"Oh, fucking hell, don't start crying!
"Oi, you stop that right now!"
"Granger, stop giving me The Look! … Oh, just come here, you mushy pea."
iv). The Sunset of Winter or Death to Wrinkles and Grey Hair.
He hates it when she cries, so he asks her why.
"I've got another grey hair!"
He hides his smile, his eyes crinkling with a set of crows-feet that she loves, and kisses, every night before bed.
She's on the verge of a break-down, and he can't help thinking that she's adorable when she panics.
But he won't let her.
He takes the brush from her hand, and examines it with a serious air. "I don't see any grey, root."
"It's there!" she insists. And she's snatching it back before he can argue.
"But… I could've sworn it was there!"
"Probably just the wrong angle of the light."
"Hmm…" She eyes the brush with distrust, as if it would grow more grey hair if she looks away.
She's still busy when he opens his hand behind his back, and shakes away the single strand of grey that was clinging to his palm.
It falls to the cream carpet, invisible, so that she can be young again.
Mission accomplished, he leans forward and captures her lips in a melting kiss.
They are both young at heart.