A/N: This is it. The last chapter. I'll kind of miss this version of them...
Also, still not JK Rowling, and anything recognizable is hers.
I'm standing at the entrance to Malfoy Manor. Draco believes it's time to make introductions.
I'm not so sure, but I agree because I can't think of a way to say no.
I can't ever seem to think of a way to say no to him, at least with actual words and a sound mind. It seems I never could.
I'm not sure at this point I ever will.
He's here to make a delivery to his father, primarily. I'm more of an afterthought, I suppose, though I know he really does want us to be serious. He wouldn't be the way he is with me if he didn't.
And I wouldn't be the way I am if I didn't, either.
We slept together again last night. And the night before, and the one before that as well. It's become a bit of a regular thing.
And it's amazing.
It'll always be amazing with us.
I said in the beginning that acceptance is the most dangerous form of society. That desensitization is inherently dangerous; that we should be cautious not to just accept things as they come and just allow things to happen without our input.
I suppose Draco and I are a bit like that.
He came to me, or I came to him, or we came together with no reason and no forethought. We came together in a clash of all sorts of things and an intense struggle of morality versus all the potential good we might have had.
He won't change; I know that now.
He's sweet to me. He's unbelievable to me, and he's even tolerant of Ginny.
Maybe one day he'll learn to be tolerant of the rest of them as well.
But he'll never change. He'll never just decide one day he wants to be a better human. He'll never just decide one day to stop doing occasionally abhorrent things.
He'll never stop, in some fashion, believing that Dark magic and all that it entails is somehow okay. Believing that people who are in the way should either get out of it or face the consequences. He'll never see the reason, apart from maybe me, and maybe his respect for me.
But I've changed.
I see that now, too.
I was so strict and so regimented and so set in my morals before him.
I knew what I wanted, and I knew what I believed, and I refused to waver for anything.
That's different now.
Now I don't know what to believe.
Now I don't know what to do.
Now I'm caught. Caught between being so strongly, irrevocably in love with the man by my side I can't even breathe sometimes and then also caught in myself. In who I used to be. In who I am now. In who I might become if I stay.
Who might I become if I stay?
How can I know?
And am I willing to risk that?
I feel Draco's hand in mine as he pushes open the gates to Malfoy Manor.
I feel him squeeze mine lightly, as though giving me strength for what's behind those doors.
There's a chance I might need that.
There's a chance I might need it for all sorts of things.
Taking a deep breath and returning his squeeze, I step over the threshold.
A/N: There it is. Way too many years in the making, but I ultimately like how it turned out. I'll be working on some for basic grammar in earlier chapters sometime soon, but this is it for the story itself
And for the record, I tried to get it totally happily ever after. I did. But looking back at the way he is, the way she is, and how they are together within the context of this story, these two are just really stubborn sometimes. Especially in my recent writing with them, they've done pretty much what they wanted regardless of what I tried to type. I've actually argued with them at times. =)
So yes, Draco will remain as he is, flaws and all. And Hermione is well on her way to changing in all sorts of ways. And I guess it's just time for me to step back and wish them luck with that.
Please review as well. I'd love to know what you think of how it turned out!