Disclaimer: The following is based on actual events. Only the names, locations, and events have been changed. And completely thieved from Jo Rowling. So I called people to call her people and her peoples people told my people's people that I had her informal permission to borrow them. And I totally put hints of RHPS and I stol a name from Hedwig and the Angry Inch, can you find them? Please forgive any blatant thievery.
Warnings: EWE. Excessively AU, sort of when it came to DH, I picked and chose what worked with my story. This story is sometimes funny, sometimes angsty, and sometimes heartwarming/wrenching. But always amusing. Sexy sex, sex, sex. Here it goes into your brain.
Hermione Granger was lying. Fibbing, bluffing or what ever particular verb preferred, albeit all definitions remained similar anyway. Besides. It was obvious. She had a tell. As every human being on the planet is wont to have. An insignificant, spasmodic, muscular contraction of the face or extremities. Sometimes, the tic was so imperceptible that one either needed to be trained in discerning it or was entirely too familiar with the subject. So closely bonded; emotionally, mentally, spiritually that it was second nature to read their behavior like a god-damned novel.
So when she spoke those words, four simple words actually, Draco Malfoy's gaze dropped immediately from her large brown eyes to her small hand. The right hand, and more accurately, the digits topped with chipped, hot pink nail lacquer. He blinked once. Quickly. For there was her thumb playing swift erratic circles against her forefinger, just as he had anticipated. As if her suspended breath depended on the adeptness in which the whorls were able to interlock correspondently.
With a beat of hearts, he limited his scope of vision, bit the inside corner of his mouth softly, and chose a careful retort, "If that is the case, then by all means, leave." He pulled the white washroom door open and leaned against it casually. His forearm rested horizontally above his head, his agile body angled carelessly, and ankles crossed nimbly. The corners of his mouth shrugged downward apathetically. "I shan't be in your way whilst you pack."
Hermione's lips parted in disbelief, and she tilted her heart-shaped face with side-long scrutiny. "Correction, I shan't be in your way whilst you pack."
"I'm not leaving," he stated simply.
Her hands clutched the lid of the commode where her body was adroitly perched, and said, "I'm paying the note on the cottage, ergo, it's mine."
Her smooth forehead flickered with lines of skepticism, "Partly?!"
"Yes. Half." His timbre was stoic, like a robot, void of any real emotion or expression.
"Half. And if it's that much ado, I'll write you a reimbursement."
She scowled and bared her teeth at him. "It'll only bounce."
Draco sighed deeply and with a wave of his hand, Summoned his cheque-book and began to write a rather hefty withdrawal, payable only to the order of one Miss Hermione Jean Granger. One that would not overdraft his account in the least. Not even if she repeated the withdrawal a billion times. But it would soothe her psyche to ignore that tiny factoid.
With pursing lips and wiggling toes, she eyed him cautiously. She didn't want his money. She didn't want the cottage. At least, she didn't want it without him. All she wanted was for him to succumb to the ascending tristesse that hunched his broad shoulders defensively. She wanted him to simply break down and admit that his sternum was nearly bursting with sorrow and heartache. Didn't his lungs burn from withholding painful gasps of impending regret? She abhorred the idea that he could be so callous. That he could shut his heart down with a blinking eye, while her body inwardly thrashed from those exact and tumultuous emotions. Couldn't he just admit he cared that she was unhappy?
Draco proffered the slip of paper daringly and his grey irises churned tempestuously, dangerously betraying a peek of tragic misery in their shadows.
Fiery red anger reared from just below her thoracic diaphragm, because it just wasn't fair that he snubbed the opportunity to expose his hurt. He seemed hell bent on appearing to not give a flipping shit about the entire situation. Psychotically Hermione snatched the cheque from him and quite hectically began tearing it into meaninglessness. Sobs escaped in her exasperation and soon the dooming saline dripped passed her lashes until she was a quivering, bawling fool perched upon frigid porcelain. A small snow of his absolute insensitivity littered the bathroom floor.
Tucking her knees up under her chin, she wrapped her arms tightly around them, just under the knobby joints. "You're so cruel," she mumbled dejectedly. Defeat eating her pride like a starved manticore. Making her small and weak.
And he itched to tell her that she was cruel also. Cutting his heart and soul into bits, shredding it with four plebeian words that had a thousand meanings, a million synonyms, and a googolplex of heartbreak. She had no right to call him cruel. No. Not when she was leaving him. He dared a peek of his emotions and sneered dolefully, menacingly, "And you doubted I would be anything less?"
Drawing in a haggard breath, her hand shot out blindly and she proceeded to lob the nearest object at his handsome face. Because she had hoped he would have been a bit more empathetic. She had in fact doubted he would be that spiteful. Ideally, Draco should have begged her to stay. Preferably, Draco should have mentioned her absurdness and asked her to be rational so that they could work it all out. Unfortunately. Her Draco never talked problems over. Her Draco never told her he loved her. He remained passive and indifferent. Always. Regrettably.
Speaking of the unlucky, her aim was bad and the stainless steel soap-dish missed his skull and collided heavily with his shoulder, and the bar of soap slapped his cheek, leaving a frothy, iridescent film.
Her stomach did a joyous herkie that would have surely received full marks from The American National Cheerleading Association. However, her bliss was short lived because Captain Botox's reserve had finally cracked.
"Shit! You fucking sociopath!" His wiped his palm furiously at his cheek; eyes squinted in astonishment and chagrin. "What was that for?"
She stood then, hands balling at her sides, elbows locked and chest protruded in a defensive battle stance. "To put a chip in that frosty Malfoy baloney, that's what. Seems to have worked, you…you…prat." Because it wasn't in her nature to call him hateful names.
His eyes widened and he inhaled deeply and wildly through his nose. "What. The. Fuck? First you tell me that you are leaving and then you assault me because I'm letting you?" And it was really that mental. Constantly. His witch was seriously imbalanced. Fickle, he had always supposed, as was her prerogative. But his understanding and patience had crested. She had taken it entirely too far. She was never satisfied. She had gone mad with it.
Case in point was currently shaking her wayward curls frantically, palms rubbing roughly at her eyelids and temples. "I didn't say I was leaving!"
"You implied it!" he growled forcibly. "You said, and I fucking quote, 'This isn't working out.' Right? 'This' as in us, our relationship. You quit us. You waved the proverbial white flag. So you get to leave. And now preferably, before I throw you out! I'm done. DONE!" He felt the tension balling his muscles, aching his neck and shoulders. He was suffocating from the stiffness of the pain. But mostly, his sore heart couldn't bear to look at her anymore. Because he did want her to stay. But pride wouldn't allow him to plead with her about it. He had spent too much time groveling and it had changed nothing. He was better off without the disturbance and he wanted it gone from his life.
She sniffed three times, nodded twice, and pushed pasted him harshly. Because maybe she was tired too. Maybe she had grown weary of his boldness. His harshness. Yes. She had. Hermione had been beaten by the game. Time to pack up and go. So she grabbed a few belongings and pulled on footwear before slamming her way out of the cottage. Out of his life. Out of their relationship.
He let her go.
Let her pass, the jarring of her elbow rippling in his gut. With all the confusion, anger, and pain shaking his cold hands as his face fell into them. His knees buckled, and he slid ungracefully against the door.
It was a biting autumn night and the crazy bint had left his home in nothing but his boxer shorts, a jumper and galoshes. He partly hoped she caught a cough-due-to-cold. He mostly worried about where she would end up.
Really, he reckoned that it didn't matter. She would come back. She always came back.
Standing, he dazedly swaggered to their bedroom, and paused at the foot of their unmade bed. Sheet's tangled and twisted. Promises of everlasting cohesion was woven into the folds and fibers. Dreams of a perfect forever creased and knotted from their bodies.
Tomorrow he'd smooth them over and they'd disappear.
Gone for always.
Because when she came back, he wouldn't let her stay.
At least he had nearly himself convinced of that when he opted to sleep on the sofa. And just before somnolence crept upon him, Draco Malfoy believed he was done with Hermione Granger. For now.
I'd like to thank my beta's: moxicrimefightr, floorcoaster, and spadul. Each of you is amazing, wacky and everything a narcissistic writer such as me could wish for. I am totally and completely the luckiest kid ever because I have the most brilliant team to help me achieve this goal. Thank you for indulging me.