Disclaimer: JK Rowling owns Harry Potter and all characters, places and terms associated with the fandom. I own the plot and the characterisations.

Warnings: Rated M for use of strong language, adult themes, violence and sexual references and scenes.

Of Blood and Fire

"Meeting you was fate,

becoming your friend was a choice,

but falling in love with you I had no control over.."


Hermione looked thumbed through her stack of parchment and then slammed her head into the desk. She wasn't sure how exactly she had allowed her other homework assignments take priority over the charms essay, but she had and was nowhere near done. She let her head rest on the desk for a few minutes, a few blissful minutes of not thinking.

Eventually, she raised her head, then jumped. "Oh. Bloody hell!"

Blaise Zabini looked down at her, looking quite unimpressed. "Nice sleep, Granger?"

She furrowed her brow a little. "I wasn't sleeping, I was frustrated. What do you want?"

"The text book you've been hogging for the past hour." Said the dark skinned wizard, pointing to the book on the table.

She glanced at the charms book, then back up at him, shaking her head. "I'm still writing my essay. I need it."

"You can write in your sleep, can you?" He raised his eyebrow. "My, my, Granger. You are multitalented. All the same, I'd like the text book. Now."

"Well you can't have it, because I'm using it."

"Look." He bent down, leaning over the desk and placing his hands on the surface. "We aren't all Granger-the-insufferable-know-it-all. Some of us have to work twice as hard and for only half the recognition and bloody praise that you get, so just give me the damn book."

She frowned. She didn't like being reminded that so many students thought she was a know-it-all and a show-off. She wasn't scared of the tall and broad, Slytherin boy, but at the same time, she felt slightly guilty about having the book for so long. "How about a compromise?"

He raised his eyebrow curiously. "I'm listening."

"You come work at this table and we'll share."

He sighed. "Fine, whatever. Just move all your shit."

Hermione looked around the desk, she had spread out a little more than she usually would. She began to pile her books up into a neat pile as Zabini disappeared, returning a few minutes later with a satchel slung over his shoulder and a pile of parchment in his hand.

He pulled out the spare chair and seated himself at the table, placing his parchment down and then opening his satchel, removing quills and a bottle of ink.

Hermione stared as he organised his things on the table. He had fiddled with the ink bottle until it was a perfect right angle and placed his spare quills in straight horizontal lines above his parchment. After a few moments, he looked at her, "What?"

She snapped out of her daze. "I'm sorry, what?"

"What were you staring at?"

She laughed a little. "Oh, erm, you." She pointed to his things on the desk. "The way you've arranged... I'm sorry, I didn't mean to stare."

He looked at the desk, then back to her. "I just like it to be... neat... that's all. There's nothing wrong with that."

"Oh, I know, I'm sorry."

"Whatever, Granger. Just put the text book in the middle, ok?"

She nodded, moving the text book and placing it in the middle of the table so that they could both see it. They worked in relative silence, no sounds coming from their secluded corner of the library, expect for the occasional noise of quills, scratching against the parchment and an amicably silent agreement to turn the page.

That was until, the presence of another person interrupted their work.

"Well, isn't this cosy?"

They both looked up, to see the sneering face of Pansy Parkinson.

"What's wrong, Blaise? Did you finally work your way through all the good looking girls in the school and now your starting on the ugly ones? Good choice though, always best to start with the worst."

"What's stuck up your arse, Pans? Still brooding over the fact that I turned you down?"

"The way I remember it, I turned you down."

"You would remember it that way." He smirked and put on a mock voice. "Oh, Blaise, I'm so lonely..."

"Fuck you, Zabini." Pansy scowled.

"Not for all the firewhiskey in the world, Parkinson."

She gave him the finger and tossed her hair, storming off through the stacks.

"What was all that about?" Hermione asked as soon as Pansy had left the vicinity.

"She's just got her knickers in a twist because Draco broke up with her, again." He replied.

"Oh, I see." She decided to change the subject. "How's your essay coming?"

"Ugh, slowly." He lent back, rubbing his shaved head with his hands. "I think I've hit the wall. The one where you're brain turns to mush and you can't think anymore."

"Do you want me to look it over for you? I might be able to see if there's any place you can improve it."

He shrugged his shoulders, sliding his parchment across the desk. "Do what you like, I'm sick of looking at it." He pushed the chair back and stood up, stretching his legs out. "Stupid, bloody chairs aren't suitable for tall people."

She glanced up, smiling a little as he complained about the chairs, although he might have had a point, it wasn't exactly suited to his six foot five, frame. She looked down at the parchment, speed-reading through his work, she was a little surprised. "Zabini, this is more than enough for an O. It looks like all you need is a summary."

He lent across the table, leaning over her shoulder to point down at the essay, "I haven't even begun to touch upon history and developed of weather changing charms yet though. Look."

He ran his finger down the page, but something about the close proximity of his body made Hermione shudder. "But that's not part of the outline." She said, in a low voice.

"Maybe not, but like I said before, twice as hard, half the recognition." He looked down at her, his eyes meeting hers for a brief moment.

Hermione quickly flicked her eyes away, her focus landing on his bicep, she didn't find it surprising that she heard so many girls talking about them, even she had to admit they were impressive.

"Earth to Granger!"

"What? Sorry, I didn't hear you."

He smirked broadly. "Granger, were you eyeing me up?"

"No!" She shook her head and frowned a little. "I just got lost in my thoughts for a moment."

"You're a terrible liar, Granger." He smirked and held out his arm. "I'll give you a freebie, if you want to squeeze it, I won't tell anyone, one time only offer."

She laughed and shoved him on his shoulder. "Oh bugger off, Zabini. Has anyone ever told you that you're full of yourself?"

"Numerous times, but then, that doesn't detract from the fact that you want to give it a squeeze."

She rolled her eyes then gave him a good natured smile. "I'm not going to hear the end of this am I?" She reached out and curled her fingers as far as they would go around the black wizards, bicep. She squeezed it and looked up at him. "Very nice, am I done playing; stroke the ego, now?"

He sat back down in his chair, smirking slightly. "I suppose that'll do."

Hermione shook her head and turned her attention back to his essay, picking up the parchment, she saw a letter in his handwriting that had been shuffled underneath. "What's this?" She said, picking it up and beginning to read. "Dear Barton..."

"No!" He reached for the parchment, trying to take it from her hands.

She laughed a little, holding it out to the side and trying to push him away with her other hand. "I hope you are being good for mother, remember to do everything she says..."

"Give it back!" He leaned on his chair, his arms going either side of her, trying to get the parchment back from her.

"Aw, that's sweet, who is he, your son?"

He scowled slightly. "Don't be so fucking stupid, it's my house elf, give it back."

She turned her head in surprise, facing him, his face a lot closer to hers than she anticipated. "Your house elf? You write letters to your house elf?" She moved her arm, allowing him to grab back the parchment.

"Yes. Ok? If I don't, he gets all antsy about when I'm coming home and tries to come and visit. The bloody things defective." He placed the letter on the desk. "The only way to keep him happy is to write him a letter once a week. You can start taking the piss now."

She shook her head. "I'm not going to take the piss out of you. You're house elf must really like you if you have to go to those lengths to keep him at home."

Blaise looked down at his hands. "Yeah, well, I can't get through the sodding front door without the little bleeder attaching himself to my leg."

She smiled at him. She had never imagined that a Slytherin, like Blaise, would ever be nice to a house elf. "Don't worry, I'm not going to tell anyone. Besides, I think it's a little sweet."

He rolled his eyes and laughed. "Years of building a reputation as a hard man, gone, cos of one sodding letter. Now I'm sweet."

"Why do you want to be known as a 'hard man' anyway?"

"When your my size, everyone wants to have a go, they want to see if they can make a quick reputation by taking out the biggest guy in the room, but if everyone thinks you're a bit of a psycho, then they tend to leave you alone."

"And you want to be left alone?"

"Most of the time. Is it so much to ask for a quiet life?"

"I guess not." She smiled a little, trying to make him feel comfortable again, now that she knew something uncomfortable about him. "So, why don't you play for the Slytherin quidditch team? With those muscles, you would probably make a pretty intimidating beater."

He scoffed. "Huh! Quidditch. I do not see the point in wasting my time, flying about on a glorified branch. Now, Gobstones, that takes skill."

She quirked her eyebrow at the Slytherin boy. "You know, you aren't at all how I expected you to be."

"How so?"

"Well, I mean, at first you come across as this big headed, good looking guy, only interested in one thing, but scratch the surface and you're actually an intelligent human being."

"I think I'll take that as a compliment, Granger."

She laughed. "I think that came out wrong."

"So what's under your surface, Granger?" He quirked his eyebrow slightly. "A sexy vixen, who takes pleasure in tying boys to bedposts?"

She cheeks flushed crimson. "Nothing of the sort."

"Have you even kissed a guy properly?"

Her mind flashed back to Viktor Krum, "Of course I have."

"Of course, pretty girl like yourself, you've bound to have had some bloke man-handle you in a dark corner somewhere."

"Don't say that."

"Too crude for you? Should I have said; some bloke kiss you beneath the pale moonlight." He made a gagging gesture.

"No, I meant... Don't say I'm pretty. It's one thing having Malfoy call me; Mudblood, all the time, but it's a different kind of cruelty saying stuff like that."

"Why? Because you think I'm lying?"

"Maybe, some guys, think I'm pretty, but not you. I'm the bushy haired, buck toothed, mudblood, remember?"

"I'm Blaise, remember? Not Draco."

She was slightly surprised by his answer, although found it a little hard to find a response for it.

"We don't all share, the Slytherin Prince's, opinions on everything." He said, a little bitterly.

"I'm sorry. I shouldn't have assumed."

"You should be sorry, but there's a way you can make up for it."

"Oh?" She said, curious now.

"Close your eyes."

She did as he asked, she knew what he was going to do before he did it. She didn't know, however, the way she would react. He gently pressed his lips against hers, bringing his hand up and resting it lightly on her neck. After a few moments, she couldn't hold back any longer and started responding to his kiss.

His hand slid to the back of her neck, grabbing a handful of hair, and tilted her head as she parted her lips. She felt his tongue slide past her teeth, licking the underside of her tongue and she let out a soft moan into his mouth. Her arms moved upwards and wrapped around his neck as the kiss deepened, his nose blasting warm air across her cheek.

After a few minutes of having their mouths locked together, she pulled back, breathing heavily as she looked into his eyes. "Wow..." It was all she could say.

He smirked, pushing his forehead against hers. "I knew you hadn't been kissed properly before. It's a shame, you should be kissed and kissed often." He moved his hand up to her mouth, placing his thumb on her lower lip and curling it down a little. "I don't think that lip's had as nearly as much attention as it deserves."

She blushed a little and pulled away. "You're a real flatterer, aren't you, Zabini?"

He smirked and corrected her. "Blaise. And yes, I am. But that doesn't necessarily mean it's not true."

"Well, Blaise, you've certainly managed to make, what otherwise would have been a normal library session, into a fairly interesting one."

He raised his eyebrow slightly. "I think I know how I make it more interesting, if your game?"


He pulled a flask from his inside pocket and uncapped it, offering it out to her. "Drink?"

She shook her head. "No thanks."

He shrugged his shoulders, taking a drink of the liquid and then replacing the cap, sliding the flask back inside his pocket. He snaked his arm back around her neck and pulled her in for another kiss, this time, she responded straight away, tasting the strange liquid he had been drinking, on his lips. She wrapped her arms around his neck as he pulled her closer to him, the kiss, hungrier, more demanding than the first.

She slid her tongue past his teeth, exploring his mouth, which tasted faintly of strawberries. She moaned softly, which he took as a prompt to pull her onto his lap, sitting her sideways across his knee. He broke away from the kiss, looking up into her eyes, her breathing was heavy, her chest, heaving. One of his arms secured around her waist, the other hand touching her cheek gently, tucking her hair behind her ear. "You're so bloody beautiful, Granger."

She bent her head, whispering into his ear. "Hermione..." Then kissed him softly and slowly on the mouth.


She pulled away from the kiss, both of them seeing a very shocked Ginny Weasley standing with her mouth open, in front of the desk.

Hermione looked down at Blaise before guiltily and reluctantly, sliding off his knee and sitting back in her own chair. "Hi, Gin."

Blaise stood up and pulled his jacket down. "Erm, I think I'll get going." He swept his papers off the desk and into his satchel before slinging it over his shoulder. He flashed Hermione a quick grin and reached out, gently brushing the underside of her chin with his thumb. "Owl me, ok?"

Ginny started, opened mouth, watching the tall, dark skinned wizard leave before turning her head to her friend. "Were you just kissing, Blaise Zabini?"

Hermione blushed a little. "Um... No?"

Ginny tilted her head, looking thoroughly sceptical and placing her hand on her hip. "Oh really? Because it looked like a damn good impression to me."

"Alright, I was."


"Don't me mad."

Ginny flopped herself down in the now vacant seat. "Mad? I'm not mad, just.. I don't know, shocked and a little appalled, perhaps? You do remember who Blaise Zabini is, don't you? Elitist pureblood, frequent purveyor of inter-house hassle, one of Malfoy's sad little lot.. Any of this ringing a bell?" She paused, a small smile tugging at the corner of her lips. "Although.."

"Although?" Hermione said, frowning slightly.

"He is pretty damn hot, what with the muscles and the smile and.." Ginny smirked to herself, shrugging. "So I suppose I can't exactly blame you. I'm almost a little jealous, actually.. What was it like?"

Hermione laughed at her friend, she couldn't help herself. "Good? .. Great, maybe? .. I don't know Gin!"

"Merlin, Hermione!" Ginny reached forward and slapped her friend on the knee. "Fine, fine.. But I do have one more, and vital question.. How, in the name of Merlin's bum cheeks, did this happen?"

Hermione chuckled and shrugged her shoulders. "I don't know. He wanted to use the text book I was using, so I said why don't we share it, because I needed to use it as well. So we sat here, just working, not talking, then Parkinson comes along and they have a bit of a spat, then she left and me and Blaise just started talking." Hermione sighed, a broad smile spreading across her face. "He's really smart, his charms essay was looking better than mine. And he hates quidditch and..." She looked around the library, then leant forward speaking in a hushed tone. "This goes, no further..."

Ginny sat forward, intrigued. "Of course."

"He writes letters to his house elf."

"Oh merlin!" Ginny laughed, sitting back in her chair. "It's a match made in heaven, when's the wedding. Oh wait, they'll be no wedding because he's a Slytherin, pureblood, who's probably after only one thing! Again, putting all hotness aside, what were you thinking Hermione?"

She shrugged. "I guess I was thinking; Merlin he has nice arms... And he said I was pretty."

"Bloody hell, Hermione, if that's all it takes to impress you..."

"Oh, come on, Gin, it wasn't just that."

"Hermione Jean Granger, how can someone as smart as you be so naive? He's probably in league with Malfoy."

"So, a guy who looks like him, could never like a girl who looks like me?" Hermione said, a little huffily. "It's not like I was about to drop my knickers in the middle of the library, you know."

"Don't be like that, don't get all shitty and defensive about it. I just meant that you really need to watch it with that one. You don't know what his motives are, and given his reputation.. Well, I hardly think I need to finish that sentence."

"I'm sorry, Gin. I didn't mean to get like that, I don't know why I'm edgy about it."

"Hmmm... Maybe because you just had a good snogging session with one of the best looking lads in the school and now you're wondering if it's too good to be true?" Ginny laughed a little. "Don't worry about it, Hermione. I'm just trying to look out for you."

"I know."

"So..." Ginny smiled. "Are you going to see him again?"

Hermione was surprised when the owl landed in front of her at breakfast, she never normally got letters, let alone parcels. She untied the string from the owls leg, giving it a crust from her toast as she inspected the brown paper, package.

"Who's that from, Hermione?" Harry said, pointing at the parcel in front of her.

She shrugged her shoulders and shook her head. "I've no idea." She looked at the label, it simply read: For Hermione Granger, Gryffindor House, Hogwarts. She pulled the string on the top of the parcel, carefully unwrapping the package. She pulled a piece of parchment from the top, unfolding it, she recognised the handwriting immediately. She couldn't help but smile to herself as she read the words.

Dear Hermione,

I couldn't help but notice the other night, that you're neck could do with something better to put around it, than a Gryffindor tie. I hope this will go some way toward remedying this.

Now it's very rude to not thank someone for sending a present, so I suggest that you do it in person. Time and place is your choosing.


P.S The Owl is under strict instructions not to leave you alone until you give it a return letter. I would if I were you, that ones a pecker.

She smiled, the thought of him sending her a present was too pleasing to her, to not smile about it. She pulled a dark blue, coloured, velvet box from the package and flipped open the lid, carefully, gasping at the contents inside.

Ginny leaned over her shoulder, curious to see what Hermione had received and spat her toast out across the table, the chewed food landing in her brother's cup of tea. "Sorry, Ron." She mumbled, then looked back at the contents of the box. "Bloody hell. Is that from...?"

Hermione shoved the letter into Ginny's hand to get her to shut up, she was already ignoring the looks she was getting from Harry and Ron. Carefully, she lifted the necklace out of the box, a silver coloured chain with a lion pendant, the lion clutching a large stone in it's claws. She pulled a piece of paper from inside the velvet box, reading the words, she almost dropped the necklace: Certificate of Authenticity... This certificate confirms that this highly quality item is genuine 18 carat Platinum, with a fire opal stone set in the pendant...

She put the paper back inside the box and held the necklace up, inspecting the stone in the light. She had never seen a fire opal before, but she liked it, it's misty pink colour seemed to have flecks of green and blue within it. She looked across the room to the Slytherin table, Blaise was reading the Daily Prophet and drinking what she presumed to be tea, from a mug. He looked up from his paper, catching her eye. Seeing that she was holding the necklace in her hand, he smiled and winked at her before going back to whatever article he was reading.

"Flipping heck!" Harry reached across the table and fingering the pendant on her necklace. "Who's sent you that, Hermione? Have you been doing some rich boy's homework for him or something?"

"None of your business you nosey, git." Ginny said, jumping to Hermione's defence, Hermione herself looking a little shell-shocked at the expensive present. Ginny pushed the letter back into Hermione's palm and nudged her in the ribs with her elbow. "Hermione, put the thing on and write back, before that owl eats all your breakfast."

Hermione looked down, seeing the owl dragging a whole piece of toast from her plate with it's beak. She chuckled and undid the clasp on the necklace, before fastening it around her neck. She pulled a piece of parchment and a quill from her bag and began scribbling.

Dear Blaise,

Thank you, it's much prettier than a tie, I have to admit. However, you are correct, it would be incredibly rude of me not to thank you in person.

Saturday is Hogsmeade weekend, why don't you meet me outside the owl office?

At 12 o'clock.


P.S That owl stole half my breakfast.

She rolled up the letter and tied it with a piece of string from the package she had received, before attaching it to the owls leg, sending it on it's way.

"Hermione?" Harry looked at his friend, who seemed to be unable to wipe her smile from her face. "Now just who sent you that necklace?"

Harry and Ron had been... Surprised... That was a good way of putting it. A more acurate way of describing their reaction when they had finally coaxed the information out of her would be; furious. Harry had sworn he was going to hex Blaise out of his shoes if he came near her again and Ron had gone quiet, before sullenly agreeing with Harry and saying that they were both going to ask what he was playing at; Hermione and Ginny had had to block the common room door, to stop them charging off on an insane mission. Hermione had quite plainly told them, that if they interfered with her life in that way, she would never proof read a single piece of homework for them again. This didn't really work. What did, however, was Ginny threatening to Owl Mrs Weasley and tell her that Harry and Ron were interfering with Hermione's life and threatening to get into a duel, simply because Hermione had been sent a present. The thought of the potential howler had made them back off a little, although it hadn't stopped Ron from sending murderous glares in the direction of the Slytherin table all throughout dinner.

After dinner Hermione and Ginny had spent a full hour going through Hermione's non-uniform clothes, trying to pick out an outfit which looked like she hadn't put much effort into selecting it. When she had modelled it for Harry and Ron, Ron had commented that he thought she would look better in a baggy jumper, Harry had been quick to agree with this statement. Ginny had told them both to grow up.

At breakfast, Hermione had done all she could to avoid looking at the Slytherin table, she didn't want to make eye-contact with Blaise before their arranged meeting. Choosing instead to listen to Neville intently, as he explained the intricacies of harvesting puffer pods.

Hermione stood now outside The Owl Office, slightly suspicious that they might be spying on her under the invisibility cloak, although Ginny had assured her that she would try to keep both boys distracted long enough for Hermione to have a good time with Blaise. At two minutes to twelve she saw him approaching and she fixed her face into a friendly smile, trying to refrain from letting it spread into an overly broad one.

"I trust, I'm not late." He said as he reached her, bending his head and kissing her lightly on the cheek, causing her to blush. "I see you like the necklace."

She nodded her head, the chain hadn't actually come off her neck since she had put it on. "I really do like it, thank you, Blaise. Although there really was no need and it looks like it cost far too much money."

"Nonsense, every woman should own at least one piece of really nice jewellery. Although, every woman might not be able to if my mother keeps buying it all." He smiled. "So, what do you want to do?"

"I don't know." She chewed her lower lip, she hadn't thought this far ahead; she'd gotten as far as meeting up with him in her head and then not been able to think of the rest. "If you have any ideas, then I'm open to suggestions."

"How about the Hogshead for a quiet one? The Broomsticks has never really been my place of choice and its usually far too packed to have a decent conversation."

"Ok, that sounds good to me." She smiled and began to move, only to find him gently grabbing her wrist.

"Hey, first things first, though..."

"What?" She was confused.

He pulled her back to him and planted a soft kiss on her mouth and slid his hand down her wrist, inter-locking his fingers with hers, before pulling away. "I just wanted to get that out of the way, should one of your friends suddenly decide they've been invited to come along. Or one my friends for that matter."

She smiled, blushing slightly and trying to repeat Ginny's mantra in her head: He might be hot, but make sure he's not using you... He might be hot, but make sure he's not using you...

They received a few strange looks from other students they passed on the high street, not just for the fact that a Gryffindor and a Slytherin were walking together, but the fact that they were holding hands.

Hermione smiled when they reached the Hogshead and he held the door open for her and allowing her to walk in first. She watched him confidently stroll up to the bar, knocking on the wood to get the barman's attention.

"Alright, Aberforth. I'll have my usual please and..." He turned to look at her. "What are you drinking?"

She shrugged her shoulders. "Butterbeer?"

He laughed. "No seriously?"

There was a pregnant pause.

"You're drinking butterbeer?"

"I don't usually go for strong spirits." She said.

"Are you willing to try, just this once?"

She considered this for a moment before answering. "Ok, but just a small measure and nothing too strong, I'll let you pick for me."

"Ok, well only if you're sure. I don't want you going back to that friend of yours and telling her I poured it down your throat." He smiled. "She looked a bit scary."

Hermione chuckled a little. "Your safe, don't worry."

He turned back to the barman. "The lady will have a single measure of black vodka, in a clean glass." He gave him a warning look. "For a sodding change." He waited until Aberforth had poured the drinks before reaching into his pocket and placing 2 galleons on the counter. "For your trouble." Blaise picked up the glasses and motioned for her to follow him to a table in the corner.

Hermione sat down on the long seat beside Blaise, picking up her glass and staring at the dark liquid. "So, what's this stuff like?"

He smiled and slid his left arm around her shoulders, pulling her a little closer, before picking up his own glass with his right hand. "Well, it's Black Vodka, has a bit of a licorice, type taste. My mum loves it, her hand is permanently attached to a bottle of it. If you don't like it though, don't worry."

She smiled as he slid his arm around her shoulders, resisting the urge to bury head into his chest. "So what are you drinking?"

He smiled and held the glass up. "Firewhiskey, nothing but the finest."

"Well, cheers."

"Cheers." He chinked his glass against hers before taking a large mouthful of the amber liquid.

Hermione raised her glass to her lips, taking a small sip. She was surprised, it was actually quite nice, but could have really done with a mixer. She placed the glass back on the table, seeing that he had drank his already. She looked up at him, about to comment on this but noticed his eyes were locked on her. She lowered her eyes slightly, but soon felt his right index finger curl underneath her chin, making her look upwards.

"Kiss me..." He whispered.

She smiled, leaning up and pressing her lips against his. She felt his tongue flick against her mouth and she opened it slightly, allowing his tongue to run along the inside of her lip.

"Well, well, well... This is a sight to be seen..."

They broke apart, Blaise growled under his breath, turning his head to see Draco standing in front of their table.

"Your standards are slipping, Zabini." He said, smirking at the couple. "I never thought I would see you and a mudblood together."

Blaise gave Hermione an apologetic look, before getting out of his seat and standing up, towering over the other Slytherin boy, by a good few inches. "Malfoy, perhaps you have mistaken me for someone who gives a shit about your opinion, let me make things clear; I don't. Piss off."

Draco scowled. "I should have known that you were a blood-traitor."

"I thought we'd established that I don't give a shit about what you think?" Blaise felt a small hand grab onto the crux of his elbow, he looked down, seeing Hermione looking up at him.

"Blaise, just leave it, he's not worth it. Let's just go."

"Alright, come on." He said, taking her hand and interlocking his fingers with hers.

"Oh, letting the mudblood tell you what to do now, Zabini? Your mother will be so proud." Draco sneered.

"Just fuck off, Malfoy." Blaise said, leading Hermione out of the pub by the hand.

Hermione had been upset that their time in Hogsmeade hadn't gone well. Ginny had offered Hermione some words of support in the common room, which had made her feel better, but Harry and Ron had been generally disapproving, although they hadn't gone so far as to say that they agreed with Malfoy on the subject.

In-between lessons, Hermione had managed to grab a few sentences of conversation with Blaise since Hogsmeade. In Astronomy, they had risked suffering through any comments, to work together, and it had been worth it, in Hermione's opinion. It had given Blaise plenty of opportunities to flash her a smile or place his hand on her waist when the teacher hadn't been looking. She had decided, after much debate with Ginny, that he was genuinely interested in her and had allowed herself to shudder when he had placed his hand on the small of her back, as they had been leaving their last charms lesson.

She was determined to spend some time with him, without being surprised by their housemates or anyone who had decided that it was their business to interfere with. She walked up the steps to the astronomy tower, taking two steps at a time. On Ginny's advice, she was wearing a strappy top and knee length skirt, Hermione had tried to point out that this could potentially lead her to being fairly cold, Ginny had pointed out that, it would be a good thing. It had taken two full minutes to realise why and she had felt profoundly stupid when Ginny had laughed at her for not getting it straight away.

She had put on very little make up, just a light brushing of mascara and a dab of lip gloss, she'd let her hair hang loose. She just wanted to feel comfortable, rather than concern herself with trivial details. She bid Ginny farewell in the girls dorms and slipped out of the common room as quickly as she could. She didn't want to go through another round of Ron trying to put a jumper over her head to cover up.

As soon as she was through the portrait, she almost ran to the astronomy tower, counting her steps all the way until he pushed open the door to the tower, her eyes widening at the sight before her. He'd laid out a blanket on the floor, there were a few candles dotted about, a bottle of elf wine and two glasses. It wasn't some over-the-top garden of candles, it was just nice.

She heard the door close behind her, she turned, seeing Blaise lock it shut with his wand. "No surprises this time." He smirked slightly and then placed his hands on her waist. "You look very nice."

She smiled, he was wearing just a plain pair of black trousers, but the green T-shirt he was wearing was taut over his body, she hadn't realised before how sculpted his chest was. "So do you."

He turned her around, sliding his arms around her waist and walking her forward. "I've put a warming charm on the blanket, I figured we could have a bottle of elf wine and look at the stars or whatever else takes our fancy."

She smiled as she sat down on the blanket, taking the glass of elf wine that he had poured for her. "Thanks." She took a sip, it was nicer than the Black Vodka he'd given her to drink in Hogsmeade. "It's really nice; what you've done up here, I mean."

He smiled and took a sip from his own glass. "Thank you, I'm glad to see my ten minutes of hard work hasn't failed to impress."

She shuffled over a little, allowing him to wrap his arm around her shoulders, while she nuzzled her head against his chest. "I hope that's the only thing you do in ten minutes."

He looked down at her, shocked. "You saucy cow! I think you've been spending too much time with me, I'm a bad influence."

"I'll say, Blaise Zabini." She looked up at him, she knew what was going to happen, it was inevitable. She placed her glass down on the stone floor in time for his mouth to meet hers.

He broke away from her mouth, placing a series of kisses down her neck, she moaned soft each time his lips connected with her skin. He slowly pulled down one of the straps to her top, kissing along her collar bone. Then he stopped.

Hermione looked at him, confused. Didn't he want her anymore? "What is it?" She asked.

He looked at her, then cupped her chin gently with his hand and leant in to kiss her softly. "Hermione." He said, after pulling back. "I have very little, self-control. If we continue down this road, I'm going to end up making love to you and I'm not sure that will be a good thing."

"Why?" She asked, becoming a little nervous, if the truth were to be told, she was aching for him.

"I think - and I'm internally kicking myself as I say this - that for once in my life, I want to do things properly. I think I'd like to be your boyfriend for a bit before we start getting hot and heavy. And besides, it will be your first time won't it?"

Hermione blushed a little. "What's that got to do with anything?"

"Do you really want the first time somebody makes love to you, to be on the top of the astronomy tower?"

She quivered as he used the words; make love, again. She had never thought the Slytherin boy could make her whole body shake, her stomach panged, a feeling in-between pain and pleasure. "You really think about stuff like that?"

"Of course I do." He said, pulling her onto his lap wrapping his arms around her waist. "I don't want to be one of those, 'my first time was terrible', stories."

"What was your first time like?" She asked, her hands resting against his chest.

"Terrible." He grinned. "It was in an airing cupboard, with our maid."

"Your maid? How old were you? How old was she?"

"14 and she was 19, I think." He said. "She mysteriously disappeared after that, I think my mum found out."

She laughed a little. "How did you manage to do it in an airing cupboard?"

"I live in a mansion, it was a pretty big cupboard."

She wrapped her legs around his waist and lent forward, kissing him lightly on the mouth. "I think I really like you, Blaise Zabini."

"I think I really like you too, Hermione Granger. There's no way around it, I think your going to have to be my girlfriend."

She grinned. "Are you going to take, no, for an answer?"

"It wasn't really a question." He smiled, pressing his mouth against her neck and kissing her skin.

Hermione bit her lip, moaning softly as the butterfly kisses sent vibrations through her skin. Being wrapped in his strong arms was beyond blissful.

It seemed like half the school was talking about Hermione and Blaise. They had stopped hiding the fact that they were seeing each other, when they had walked into the great hall for breakfast, holding hands, Hermione had felt like half the students were staring at them. Blaise hadn't cared, he kissed her lightly on the mouth before going to sit in his usual spot on the Slytherin table. When Hermione had gone to join the Gryffindor table, most of her housemates were looking at her with open-mouths. She chose both to ignore them and the disapproving looks she was getting from Harry and Ron.

When she had glanced across the room, she had had to laugh, as Blaise was watching her, a smile across his face, much to the frustration of Tracey Davis, who was trying to talk to him, shoving him on the shoulder and waving her hand in his face, before finally giving up.

When they had any lessons together, they would hold hands and talk while waiting for the teacher to open the door, completely consumed by one another. Whenever they could, they would sit next to one another in lessons, playing footsie under the desk, much to Harry's and Ron's dismay, as it meant they couldn't copy Hermione's work any longer. The only lesson they could not sit together in, was potions, they had received a particularly snarky comment from Snape as they had entered his classroom, holding hands, then decided it wasn't worth the hassle.

By the time they boarded the Hogwarts express to go home for the summer holidays, they had been seeing each other for three months. Much to the surprise of their classmates, they were still going strong and hadn't allowed their friends opinions to get in the way of their relationship.

"Do we have to?" Blaise moaned.

"Yes, I know you wanted us to be alone on the way back, but there are no free compartments so you're just going to have to deal with it."

"Fine." He pouted. "But if Weasley starts on me again, I'll hex him into oblivion."

"He'll be on his best behaviour."

He smiled, placing his hand on her backside and squeezing it as they walked into the compartment where Hermione's friends were sitting. Harry gave him a polite nod, Ginny smiled and made a small wave with her hand, whereas Ron simply looked murderous. But, then again, Ron always looked murderous when Blaise was with Hermione. Blaise gave polite smiles to all but Ron, to whom he gave the finger whilst Hermione wasn't looking.

"So, you two." Ginny said as Blaise sat down next to Hermione, his arm curling around her shoulders. "What are you going to do over the summer holidays? Any specific plans, Blaise? Or are you just going to take her to your bedroom and show her your gobstones?"

Blaise furrowed his brow and looked at Hermione. Hermione laughed and reached up, kissing him on the cheek. "She means your actual, gobstones, dear. I told her about that silver set you bought for me."

"Yeah, Hermione said you weren't much of a quidditch player, Zabini." Ron said. "Don't worry, a lot of big guys can't hack it on a broom."

"Ronald! I never said..."

Blaise scowled and cut Hermione off. "Actually, Weasley, I am more than an adept flyer, I just choose to spend my time practising a real skill, like gobstones, rather than pissing about for hours on a glorified branch."

"Oh, Merlin." Hermione covered her eyes with her hand with her hand, she knew what was going to happen next, it had been building for weeks.

"GLORIFIED BRANCH?!" Ron spat, standing up out of his seat. "Show's how much, you know about flying, Zabini, I bet you couldn't even hit a bludger straight."

"Oh yeah?" Blaise said, standing out of his own seat, Ron was a tall boy, but Blaise was taller. "You know what I can hit straight?"

Harry shook his head, he wasn't going to get involved, Ginny tried to be the voice of reason. "Boys, don't you think you should put the testosterone away?"

Ron shoved his face into Blaise's. "You might be able to intimidate some first years, but you can't intimidate me. You might look big, but I bet you hit like a... gggyyyhhhlll..."

Blaise's hand had shot out and closed around Ron's throat, before Ron had even realised what happened. "What was that Weasley? I couldn't hear for all the choking." He tightened his grip and lifted Ron clean off the floor, holding him several inches off the ground.

"Blaise! Put him down!" Hermione had stood up, her hand on his arm.

He looked at Hermione, then to the choking and kicking Ron, Harry had stood up and drawn his wand, Blaise released his grip, dropping Ron to the floor. "I'm going to find the trolley lady, get some tea." He muttered, leaving the compartment.

"He's a fucking, psycho, Hermione. Why are you wasting your time with him?" Ron gargled out, clutching his throat.

Ginny shook her head at her brother. "Well, Ron, you did provoke him."

Ron looked to Harry, who simply shook his head. "Don't look at me, mate, I'm not getting involved."

Down the corridor, Blaise purchased three cups of tea from the trolley lady; one for him and one each for the Hermione and Ginny. Ginny was the only one of Hermione's friends that he actually liked, he thought she was quite funny and not so bothered about which house he was in, as the way he treat Hermione; he had to respect that.

He turned around, three cups of steaming tea in his hands, only to be find himself face to face with Draco Malfoy. "How's your girlfriend, Zabini? Still a filthy mudblood?"

"Go fuck yourself, Malfoy."

"Language!" The trolley lady scolded.

Draco smirked at Blaise. "You won't be able to carry on like this forever, you know. Eventually this is all going to catch up with you and when it does, you're in for a long, hard fall."

Blaise rolled his eyes. "Save your threats for someone who gives a shit."

Draco smirked as he watched Blaise push past him and walk down the train corridor. "I would give a shit, if I were you, Zabini. Although I remain thankful that I'm not you..."

Blaise slid open the compartment door, using his elbow to turn the handle. He handed a cup to Ginny, then Hermione before taking his seat again.

"Thanks, Blaise." Ginny said, looking at the tea in her hands, she didn't want to tell him that she preferred coffee, it was a nice gesture. She blew on the hot liquid and took a sip.

"Ok, before anything else is said." Harry spoke, looking at Blaise. "We'll just agree that the two of you will never get on and it would be in the best interest of all concerned if you just carried on, pretending the other one doesn't exists. Agreed?"

Blaise shrugged and put his arm around Hermione. "Suits me."

Ron nodded. "Me too."

"Fantastic." Harry said. "Now if you can make it to London, without killing each other, then everyone's happy."

The rest of the journey continued in relative peace, when Hermione had fallen asleep, leaning into Blaise's chest, he held her hand and stroked her hair, while talking to Ginny, trying to convince her of the superiority of Gobstones to Quidditch. Ginny had made a mental note to tell Hermione later that her boyfriend was both insane and incredibly sweet. She'd had to stop herself from Aww-ing at him when he had been holding Hermione closely to him while she slept.

He woke her up when they were ten minutes from Kings Cross, gently shaking her shoulder. "C'mon sleepy head, time to get up."

"Five more minutes." She murmured sleepily.

"No, time to get up, now." He said, making her sit up.

"Horrible man." She said, stretching her arms out. "What time is it?"

"We'll be pulling into the station soon." Blaise moved some hair out of her face. Ron made a gagging sound.

"Who's meeting you at the station, Blaise?" Ginny asked, as she stood up to pull her bag out of the over-head hanger.

"Barton." He replied. "Mother owled me last week from Barbados, she's not planning on coming back from her holiday for a another few days, so I have the place to myself."

"Who's Barton?" Asked Harry, standing up to help Ginny with her bag.

"He's the house elf." Said Blaise, nonchalantly.

"Well..." Hermione stifled a yawn. "My parents are meeting me. I'd really like it if you met them."

Blaise furrowed his brow a little. "Your parents? I don't know. I mean I've never really talked to..."

"Muggles?" Ron said, raising an eyebrow.

"I was going to say parents, actually." Blaise shot Ron a foul look before turning his attention back to Hermione.

"Well it would mean a lot to me if you did talk to them." Hermione said.

"Well how can I say no to that?"

"Mum, Dad, this is Blaise Zabini. My boyfriend."

Blaise offered his hand out to Hermione's father to shake. Mr Granger raised an eyebrow as he glanced up at the extremely tall black Wizard stood next to his only daughter. He took the boys hand and shook it, letting it go quickly.

"It's a pleasure to meet you, Mr Granger." Blaise said, then looking to Hermione's mother, he took her offered out hand, he grasped her fingers and brought it upwards, kissing the back of her hand. "Mrs Granger, I can see where Hermione gets her beautiful complexion."

Mrs Granger smiled in spite of herself, it was hard not to be flattered by the charming and handsome young man, whom her daughter seemed to be quite taken with.

Mr Granger was not as easily impressed. "Where is your mother, Blaise, it is Blaise, isn't it?"

He nodded and then pointed across the platform to well dressed house elf, waiting patiently next to Blaise's trunk. "I'm afraid Barton is all I have with me today. Mother is on holiday in Barbados. But she'll be back in a few days, perhaps I could invite you both to come to the Mansion and meet her there?"

"Mansion?" Mrs Granger raised an eyebrow and looked at her daughter.

"Yes, Mum, Mansion."

Blaise beckoned Barton from across the platform. "Barton, come here."

The house elf waddled over, looking up at Blaise, somewhat confused. "Yes, Master Blaise? Can Barton be helping you with something?"

"No, Barton, I just want you to meet a few people." He placed his hands on Hermione's shoulders. "This is Hermione, she's my girlfriend."

Hermione bent down and offered her hand out to the small elf. "Nice to meet you, Barton, I've never seen an elf as well dressed as you before."

Barton took hold of Hermione's hand with his tiny one and shook it vigorously. "Yes, Miss, nice to meet you Miss, will you be needing anything, Miss?"

Blaise shook his head and rolled his eyes. "Barton, let her go. She doesn't need anything." He laughed as Barton finally let go and then whispered to Hermione. "The reason he's well dressed is because he completely ignores us, we've given him piles of clothes over the years, finally my mum got sick of it and had a few suits made for him, that ones his favourite, he likes pinstripes for some reason."

Hermione smiled and then pointed to her parents. "These are my Parents, Barton."

Barton waddled over, holding his hand out to shake their hands, but Blaise grabbed hold of his shoulder and pulled him back. "That's alright, Barton, we haven't got all day." He looked to Hermione's father. "Is your house wired up to the floo network?"

"Um, no." Hermione answered for her father. "We have a gas fireplace."

"I'm not sure what that means, but I can only assume that it means floo-ing is out of the question." He gave a small shrug of his shoulders. "If Tuesday is fine for you, then I will send instructions on how you can get to the Mansion. It was lovely to have met you."

He kissed Hermione on the cheek, he didn't want to act inappropriately in front of her parents, then grabbed Barton, making their way off the platform.

Hermione watched until he had completely gone before turning to her parents. "Well? What do you think?"

"I think he's lovely, Hermione." Said Mrs Granger. "Very good looking, very charming, he seems like a nice boy."

Hermione smiled and then looked to her father. "Dad?"

"He's very... tall..."

When Tuesday came, Hermione could hardly contain her excitement. From Blaise's descriptions, she knew the place would be big, she just hadn't realise how big. Her parents car pulled up the path, they all stared at the building, as they got out of the car. Hermione counted 40 sets of windows, just on the part she could see, he definitely hadn't lied when he said that it was easy to get lost inside.

The front door opened and Barton the house elf stood, beckoning them inside. Hermione and her parents followed the elf into a large hallway, then into a room just off the side. She smiled when she saw Blaise sat next to an extremely glamorous looking witch.

He stood up. "Hermione, this is my mum."

The dinner table was relatively silent, the only thing that Hermione feel slightly less uncomfortable was the fact that she and Blaise had slipped off their shoes and were playing footsie.

"So..." Mrs Granger smiled, trying to start a conversation as they ate. "Where is your husband, Mrs Zabini?"

Blaise covered his eyes with his hand.

"Which one?" His mother asked, placing a spoonful of soup inside her mouth.

"Well..." Mrs Granger looked to Hermione for support, Hermione shrank in her seat, Blaise had already given her the run down of his mother's husbands. "Blaise's father?"

"Blaise's father died when Blaise was four." She said, eating another spoonful of soup. "I kept the name because it came with the house."

"I'm sorry."

"Don't be, I've been married since." Mrs Zabini said. "Six times since."

"Oh..." Said Mrs Granger, looking into her soup bowl. "And they are..."

"All dead as well..."


Hermione felt Blaise's hand slip onto her knee under the table, she reached down and grabbed onto his hand, their fingers inter-locking.

"I'm sorry." Hermione's father placed his spoon down. "I can't sit here and eat soup, I have to say something."

"Darling..." Mrs Granger put her hand on his shoulder, but he shrugged it off.

"No, I need to say my piece. I'm very sorry, Mrs Zabini, I'm sure your son is a fine young man, but I really don't approve of him seeing my daughter."

"Dad!" Hermione gripped to Blaise's hand tighter.

Blaise's mother shrugged her shoulders and ate another spoonful of soup. "That's quite alright, I don't approve of your daughter, seeing my son."

"Mum!" Blaise squeezed Hermione's hand, they both could tell what was going to happen next.

"I'm sorry, darling, but you know how I feel on this subject." Mrs Zabini said, then turned to Hermione's parents. "My son is a pureblood, he's expected to marry a nice pureblood girl and carry on the family name. You're both muggles, I'm sorry, but your daughter just isn't good enough for my son."

"Mother..." Blaise gave her a warning look. "How many times do we have to go through this? I don't care about all that blood purity shit."

"I think that's beside the point." Mr Granger said. "What I care about, is that my daughter has been spending so much with someone who is older and more experienced and frankly I have reserves about anyone who is as wealthy as you appear to be, Mrs Zabini. I'm sorry but..."

"Hang on! We're exactly the same age, Dad." Hermione interjected. "We're in the same year."

"Well that doesn't matter then, but I still have reservations about him, someone brought up in this lifestyle, has no concept of money. He probably thinks he can buy you, Hermione, with expensive gifts."

"Mr Granger, my son has had a monthly allowance since he was eleven, which serves as part of his inheritance from his father. He gets 200 Galleons a month and he has to make it last. He's never had a knut from me since the day he started receiving his allowance."

Mr Granger looked to his daughter for a translation of wizard currency, but Hermione was staring at Blaise with her mouth open. "You get 200 Galleons a month?"

"Yeah..." He couldn't quite bring himself to look at her. "I don't spend it all, I save most of it."

"How much is that, Hermione?" Mrs Granger looked at her daughter.

"It's about a thousand pounds, Mum." She answered, still looking at Blaise.

A silence hung in the room, until finally, Blaise's mother broke it, by placing her spoon into her empty soup bowl. "I think we've established that neither of approve of this relationship, Mr Granger. Why don't we just leave it at that?"

"No." Blaise stood up, pushing his chair out. "We won't just leave it at that, I've listened to this long enough. I'm sick of it." He looked to his mother. "Mum, I love you, but you're not in charge of my life, you don't get to dictate who I can see and who I can't. You might think lineage is important, but I don't. You're entitled to your objections, but you can't use them as an excuse to lay down the law." He turned his head to Hermione's father. "Mr Granger, yes, I am more experience than your daughter, yes, I come from a wealthy family, but aside from a few drinks and some daft bits here and there, I've only bought her one expensive present and I have no plans to buy her another one till her birthday. I treat your daughter with respect and I've put up with a lot of shit from my house mates to be with her and I'm not about to let some stupid objects you have, ruin that for us." He looked down at Hermione and held his hand out to her. "C'mon, Hermione."

She placed her hand in his and stood up then allowed him to lead her from the room, closing the door behind them.

Blaise's mother picked up a bell on the table and rang it. "Barton! Second course!"

Blaise led Hermione up a large staircase and then through a long set of corridors, eventually reaching a door which he unlocked with his wand and brought her inside. "Bloody hell... " She said as she looked around the room. "This is bigger than the Gryffindor common room."

Blaise quirked his eyebrow slightly. "It's not as big as my old room, but I wanted to be further away from my mother. She's in the other wing of the house."

"I'm still having a hard time dealing with the fact that your house has wings." She said.

"My Grandfather made a lot of money and bought the house, my Dad didn't live long enough to spend it, so it all got left to me, my mother kept marrying rich men, who kept leaving her a lot of money and every time they did, she added something new to the place. Just don't ask me about the guest house, it still pisses me off that she had that thing built." He sat on the side of his bed, flopping backwards and laying down. "Ugh... It's been a bad day..."

"Maybe I can cheer you up?" She said, moving over to the bed and climbing up, placing a leg either side, to straddle him. She looked down at him as he reached up, tucking some of her hair behind her ear.

"You are so beautiful, Hermione." He said, brushing her cheek with his thumb.



"I love you." She said and then bent down, pressing her mouth against his, so he couldn't respond, she couldn't hear him tell her that he didn't love her, but at the same time, she didn't want to hear him say that he did, in case he was just saying it because she had. She felt his hands moved to her waist, his fingers slipping just underneath the material of her top, caressing her skin.

She pulled back from the kiss, taking hold of the bottom of her top and pulling it over her head, throwing it to the side. They might not have made love yet, but they had indulged in vast quantities of heavy petting whenever they had had the chance. She liked the way it felt when his hands expertly massaged her breasts and he liked it when she ran her small hands up and down his chest. Today felt different, though, Hermione wasn't sure what it was, but she knew the way he was now kissing her neck felt different to other times. There was more urgent passion in those kisses and more hunger in his lips.

He sat up and pulled his own shirt off over his head, slipping his arms around her waist, he spent a few minutes, just looking intently into eyes, before his hand slowly moved up her back, undoing the clasp on her bra and pulling it away from her, and throwing it to the side. Hermione wrapped her arms around his neck as he pulled her closer, she could not help but feel incredibly aroused as her naked breasts pressed against his chest and they began to kiss furiously.

Blaise lifted her up and laid her on the bed, their kiss un-breaking as he laid atop her. She ran her hands over his sculpted chest, she loved the way his body shuddered when she ran a single finger down his stomach to his navel. He pulled away from the kiss and looked down at her, before starting to kiss down her chest, she was nervous, she didn't know what to do with her hands, her whole body suddenly became raised with Goosebumps, finally she decided to stretch her arms above her head, resting her hands at the top of the pillow.

She gasped as Blaise finally reached her breast and he took her nipple into his mouth, beginning to suck on it lightly. She arched her back and moaned with pleasure. The nipple on her other breast began to feel tight from neglect, she ached for him to give it some equal attention, she curved her back slightly and he read her signs, moving his mouth to the other breast he began to suck lightly on her neglected nipple.

After a minute he removed his warm mouth, the cold air hitting his saliva made her nipple become instantly harder. He sat up and undid her trousers, she lifted her backside, allowing him to pull them away from her easier. Within in a minute, he had removed his own trousers and had laid next to her, pulling her body up against his. Her hand roamed around his chest, feeling his muscles as his hand gently massaged her breast, then began to trail down her stomach. She gasped slightly as she felt his hardness pressing against her from inside his boxer shorts, then he began to kiss her as his hand slipped between her thighs.

He could feel her dampness through her knickers, they were already soaked through, he pressed his finger against the cotton material and began to rub her. Hermione moaned into his mouth, her whole body was aching for him, she slid her hand down his stomach and ran over the material of his boxer shorts, her hand skimmed over his large erection, then, with a little more confidence, she started to rub her hand up and down his stiff member.

It was his turn to moan. Her hand rubbing up and down his length, even through his underwear, sent pulses of pleasure through his body. He pulled away from the kiss, just to get some air, their breathing now both heavy, as their hands pressed against each other atop their underwear.

Blaise slipped his finger inside the crotch of her knickers, the feeling his of finger finally rubbing against her caused Hermione to throw her head back and moan loudly. He stared at her intently as he ran his finger up and down her, enjoying seeing her face contort as he touched her in the right places and she arched her back, pressing her breasts into his chest.

She let out another soft moan followed by a hoarse whisper. "Blaise... please..."

He pulled his fingers out of her underwear and then hooked them into the waist band, pulling them down her legs and throwing them away from the bed. He pulled down his boxer shorts, her eyes widen as she saw his full erection for the first time, finally believing what Ginny had told her about black men.

He laid on top of her, nudging her legs apart with his knee, he bent his head, kissing her softly and slowly on the mouth, his erection pressing into her thigh. He pulled back and looked down into her eyes. "You sure, you're ready?"

She nodded her head, biting on her lip a little.

"I'll be gentle, I promise." He said and pressed his lips to hers, giving her a light kiss, he pulled back and looked into her eyes, trying to look at her reassuringly as he took hold of his stiff member, rubbing the head against her a little before finally placing himself at her opening and pushing himself inside, entering her for the first time.

Hermione gasped loudly as she felt him push inside her, it hurt, her eyes stung with tears, but at the same time, it felt so right. She wrapped her arms around him, enjoying the feeling of him being finally inside her.

He bent his head kissing her softly as he pushed himself further inside her. He was trying to be as gentle as possible, but he knew it would probably hurt her anyway. He lifted himself up on his elbows and drew back a little before pushing back inside her, going further in this time.

She pulled away from the kiss and gasped loudly, scrunching her eyes. She felt his fingers brush her cheek and she opened her eyes again.

"Are you ok?" He whispered to her.

"Yeah..." She whispered back. "It hurts a little."

"It will at first." He stroked her hair, to comfort her. "But it will get better."

She nodded her head, motioning for him to continue.

He drew back his hips and pushed inside her again, doing this a few times until her gasps more shallow, before finally pushing himself completely inside her. He held himself there for a few moments before starting to pump his hips back and forth.

Hermione bit her lip, as he started to establish a rhythm, moving in and out of her in and out of her in long, smooth strokes, she began to notice how good it felt. She threw her head back into the pillow, his lips started to kiss her around the base of her neck and she started to moan, the noises from her throat growing louder each time he pushed into her.

Blaise started to increase his speed, her moans spurring him on, his hips now pumping fast into her, he could feel his climax starting to build up from his toes. One of the reasons he generally preferred to not be on the top was that he lasted longer, but he knew this was her first time, he would have to ease her into things before approaching her about going on top.

She felt a wave of pleasure rush through her body, the waves kept coming, building higher and higher with each push of his hips.

He whispered in her ear. "Hermione..."

That alone was enough to send another wave crashing through her. Her voice felt caught in her throat, but she managed to whisper back to him. "Oh... Blaise..."

Hearing his name on her lips sent him over the edge and started to come inside her. He closed his eyes as pushed his hips hard into hers, finally filling her with his release. He opened his eyes again, looking down into her face he cupped it with his hands, kissing her lightly on the lips before drawing back and whispering to her. "I love you, too..."

He withdrew slowly, and flopped down beside her, he ran his fingers down her arm, both their bodies were glistening with a thin layer of sweat.

She was exhausted, she managed to gain the energy to snuggle up against him, pressing her head into his chest as he pulled the covers around them and put his arms around her body, holding her as closely as he could. She felt her eyelids start to droop as she began to fall asleep, feeling completely safe being held in his strong arms.

Ginny walked up the long path leading up to the mansions front door, she hadn't heard anything from Hermione since they had parted ways at the Hogwarts express. She'd gone to Hermione's parents house, only to be told, somewhat bitterly, by her father, that she was spending a few days at her boyfriends house.

Ginny had to admit, the 'house' was impressive, if it hadn't been for the sign at the gates, she would have thought that she had stumbled across the wrong place. She saw a very beautiful looking black witch, sipping a glass of black liquid in a chair in front of the house. She rolled her eyes slightly as she caught sight of the familiar Quills & Moon logo on the front of the book that the witch was holding; her own mother read those books, they were full of dreary romance stories. She could only assume that this was Blaise's mother.

She fixed her face into a smile and approached the witch. "Hi, can Blaise and Hermione come out to play?"

Blaise's mother wafted her book in the direction of the door. "They're in his room, Barton will show you."

Ginny nodded, not wanting to disturb Blaise's mother any further she walked into the house, seeing a house elf attacking some portrait frame with a feather duster, she quirked her eyebrow. "Are you Barton?"

The house elf turned to face the red haired witch, peering at her curiously. "Yes."

"Can you show me where Blaise's room is? Mrs Zabini said it was ok."

The house elf nodded and started padding up the big staircase. "Follow Barton."

She did as she was told, being careful not to lose sight of the elf as he led her down a series of long corridors, she was fairly certain she would get lost if she was left to try and find her own way there. Eventually, they reached what she assumed was Blaise's room as the house elf stood in front of the room, waiting for her.

"This is it. Barton will be downstairs." There was a loud crack and the house elf disappeared.

Ginny looked at the bedroom door, shrugging her shoulders she knocked lightly and then turned the handle, the door swung open, and she blushed.

Hermione was laid in Blaise's bed, facing in Ginny's direction, a sheet wrapped around her body, Blaise was laying behind her his arm tucked around her body, his hand entwined with hers. Blaise's eyes opened, seeing the red-haired girl in the doorway he raised his head off his pillow. "Does this mean we're going to have to get up?" He didn't wait for her response. "Give us ten minutes, shut the door."

Ginny shut the door as quickly as she could, blushing still at the image of seeing her best friend, asleep in bed and being embraced by the school's resident man-whore.

After ten minutes, the door opened and a fully dressed Blaise stood aside to allow her to pass him by and enter. She saw an also fully-dressed, Hermione, sitting on a sofa, he legs curled up underneath her body and her head hanging a little from tiredness. "Hiya, Hermione." Ginny walked across the room, seating herself in armchair across from her friend. "You're not dead, always a good thing."

Blaise moved across the room, sitting down next to Hermione on the sofa. "To what do we owe the pleasure of your company?"

"I'm making sure my friend is alive and well, that's all." Ginny said. "I haven't heard from you in a week, I was getting a bit worried."

Hermione yawned. "Sorry, Gin." She stretched her arms upwards, she was still half asleep. "Although, you could have owled me, you know."

"True, but when your parents said you were staying here, I couldn't resist popping by." Ginny Grinned.

"As good an excuse as any, I suppose." Blaise said, shaking his head with a smirk.

"Mum said that she would really like it if you came over for dinner. Tonight, if your not fixed for anything."

"We don't have any plans do we?" Hermione said, looking to Blaise, who shook his head. "Yeah, I'll come over, what time?"

"Well you know Mum, she hasn't seen you for ages, so somewhere around five-ish?"

Hermione laughed a little. "Alright, I'll be there."

"Good. Harry's arriving tonight, and me and Mum are starting to feel a bit out-numbered." Ginny smiled. "Maybe we can get your boyfriend up on one of those 'glorified branches' and see how he does on a three-a-side quidditch match?"

Blaise furrowed his brow a little. "Er, no offence, Ginny, but what makes you think I'm coming?"

"It's an invitation to the both of you. Mum's been doing her head in with curiosity to see what the famous Lucretia Zabini's son, looks like."

Hermione looked at Blaise curiously. "Does your mum know Mrs Weasley?"

"I seriously doubt it." Blaise said. "My Mum's sort of... Well known, shall we say?"

"What he's skirting around, Hermione, is that his mother is kind of famous in most wizarding circles for... Various reasons... Bloody hell, sometimes I forget that you have a tendency to not know this stuff." She shook her head with a grin. "Anyway, are you both coming or what?"

"If I ever figure out how you talked me into this, I'll write it down and have it published in the Daily Prophet so that males everywhere will know how devious you women really are."

"Stop moaning and get inside this fireplace." Hermione said with a grin.

He shook his head and stood beside her. "If there's trouble, I reserve the right to say 'I told you so'."

"Duly noted." She grabbed a handful of floo powder and threw it down. "The Burrow!"

The green flames sprang up around them, roaring for a minute until they died away, to reveal the messy living room of The Burrow. They stepped out of the fireplace, Blaise almost hitting his head on the mantle. Hermione coughed as she began brushing herself down, the floo powder always seemed to get stuck inside her throat.

"Is that you Hermione, dear?" The voice of Mrs Weasley sounded out from the kitchen, she appeared a few moments later, wiping her hands on the apron tied around her waist. "Oh, it is you, right on time..." Her eyes caught sight of the tall, dark skinned wizard stood next to Hermione, her eyes widened slightly as she tilted her head to assess him. "You must be Blaise. I've heard a lot about you."

Blaise couldn't tell from her tone whether this was a good thing or a bad thing. He chose instead to simply go into 'mother mode,' a smile spread across his lips and he reached out to take Mrs Weasley's hand, kissing the back of it. "I was under the impression that Ginny was the only girl in this family, she didn't tell me she had an older sister."

Mrs Weasley blushed. "I'm Ginny's mother."

"Never!" Blaise exclaimed. "You don't look old enough."

Hermione rolled her eyes at Blaise, he clearly had a few pre-prepared speeches for the occasions when he had to meet someone's mother. "Be careful, Mrs Weasley." She said, stepping forward and curling her hand around Blaise's arm. "This one could charm the wings off a bat."

Mrs Weasley merely smiled and turned to head back in the kitchen, encouraging the young couple to follow after her. "Would either of you like a cup of tea? I've just boiled the kettle."

Blaise followed behind Mrs Weasley, taking hold of Hermione's hand and locking his fingers together with hers. "I would love a cup, Mrs Weasley. I take mine very milky with two sugars."

Mrs Weasley nodded as Blaise and Hermione sat down at the kitchen table, presenting them with two steaming mugs of tea. She sat down in her own chair, her tea already on the table. "So, Blaise, your mother, is she..."

Blaise waved his hand. "Yes, she is. Although I've been in the doghouse this week with her, so I'd prefer not..."

"Oh?" Mrs Weasley raised her eyebrows. "What have you done, dear?"

Blaise smirked and looked at Hermione. "Brought home a beautiful girl who's planning on stealing her only son away from her."

It was Hermione's turn to blush, even though she couldn't tell if he was saying it to impress Mrs Weasley or because it was true.

"Mum...?" A voice called out from the doorway, causing all three occupants of the kitchen to turn their heads. "Ginny wants to know if..." Fred and George Weasley walked through the door, neither Blaise or Hermione could tell which one of them had been speaking.

"...Hermione's here." Fred finished.

George opened the kitchen window and lent out. "Oi, Ginny! Hermione's here and she's brought tall, dark and filthy rich with her."

"George!" Mrs Weasley scolded, a little unsure if it actually was George she was telling off.

Fred and George pulled up a seat at the kitchen table, their eyes locked on Blaise, which made him feel a little uncomfortable. "Ginny told us you live in a Mansion."

"Boys, it's very rude to discuss money at the table." Mrs Weasley said, as she stood from her seat, suddenly feeling the need to grab a fresh table cloth from the wash pile and switch it with the slightly tea-stained one currently laid out.

"It's alright, Mrs Weasley." Blaise said, looking at the twins, unable to tell which one was which and fairly sure that he had no idea what both their names were. "Yes, I do. What's that got to do with anything?"

"Got any rooms you don't use?" Fred said, taking the cup of tea his mother was handing to him.

"We have some new indoor fireworks we need to test." Said George.

"Only our flats a bit small and we're a bit worried we might destroy the place if something goes wrong."

"Alright, that will be enough of that." Mrs Weasley said.

"Hiya Hermione. Blaise." Ginny said from the doorway, her broom in her hand.

"Hi, Gin." Hermione said as took a sip from her tea cup.

"It's beginning to get a bit crowded in here." Mrs Weasley said.

"Well Zabini can come outside with us." George said, standing up. "We were about to get a game of quidditch going."

A look of blind panic spread across Blaise's face, he squeezed Hermione's hand tightly.

"Quidditch isn't really Blaise's game." Hermione looked to the twins.

"Big guy like him?" Fred raised his eyebrow. "Don't be daft, Hermione, he'd make a great beater."

"I prefer Gobstones."

"GOBSTONES?!" Fred and George shouted, simultaneously, bursting into fits of laughter.

"You're having us on, surely?"

Blaise shook his head. "I'm really not a fan of quidditch."

"You definitely are a strange one, you, Zabini." Said one of the twins, Blaise wasn't sure which.

Mrs Weasley had eventually chased them all out of the kitchen. Ginny had said she wanted to talk to Hermione, so Blaise had agreed to act as an umpire in her absence. Fred and George had practically pushed him out of the door.

Ginny had taken Hermione upstairs to her bedroom, so that they could have a 'chat.' Hermione knew what her friend was going to ask before they had even got through the door.

"So." Ginny grinned as she sat down on her bed. "You've been sleeping at his house and from I saw this morning, I can only assume you've finally slept together."

Hermione sat down on the bed, picking up a pillow and hugging in her lap. "We didn't sleep together." Hermione blushed. "We made love." She buried her face in the pillow as Ginny squealed.

"Hermione, you can't say that and then bury your head in a pillow!" Ginny reached out and pulled the pillow away from her friends face. "I need details. Scratch that I demand details!"

Hermione smiled and shrugged her shoulders. "Ok, what do you want to know?"

"Well what happened would be a good place to start."

"You want me to draw a diagram?"

"You know full well what I mean, Hermione Granger."

She smiled. "Well, he invited my parents to come over to his house..."

"Mansion..." Ginny corrected.

"Alright, Mansion. And we sat down with our parents to have dinner..."

"Oh, I can imagine how well that went..."

"Do you want me to tell this story?"

"Sorry." Ginny waved her hand. "Do continue."

"Well my dad started saying that he didn't like Blaise and Blaise's mother started saying that she wasn't too keen on me either and that she wanted her son to marry a pureblood..."

"You're joking?"

"No." Hermione said. "It a bit of a disaster actually. But then Blaise told his mother that he didn't care about blood purity and then he told my father that he cared a lot about me and he'd put up with a lot of shit to be with me and wasn't about to give up now."

"So then what happened?"

"Well then he took me up to his bedroom and he was a bit down about the whole argument. So I told him I loved him and kissed him and then..." She sighed, a little dreamily. "Then he made love to me."

"Oh, Merlin." Ginny flopped back on her bed, then sat up again. "You told him you loved him? What did he say?"

"Well, I didn't really give him chance to answer, but when we'd finished, he whispered in my ear; I love you, too..."

"Merlin's beard, that's so sweet, it's sickening." Ginny grinned. "I'm almost a little jealous." She grabbed her pillow and hugged it to her waist. "What was it like?"

"It hurt, but... Bloody hell, it was amazing..."


The shout caused both girls to jump slightly, realising the sound was coming from outside they exchanged a look and then quickly moved to the window to look outside. Harry was stood between Blaise and Ron, who seemed to be in the middle of a heated argument. Ginny and Hermione looked at each other and then ran from the bedroom and down the stairs.

As they passed the kitchen, Mrs Weasley looked curiously at them. "What on earth is going on out there?"

The girls didn't answer, they ran straight out the door, seeing Harry trying to diffuse the argument between the two boys that looked like it was about to turn into a fight. Ginny looked to Fred and George who were sat on the ground, eating a plate of sandwiches and looking thoroughly amused by the whole thing.

"What's going on?" She asked her brothers.

"Dunno." Fred said. "They just started arguing about something."

"It's jolly entertaining thought." Said George. "Almost more entertaining than winding up Filch, this is."

Fred held up the plate. "Jam sandwich?"

Ginny shook her head in disbelief and Hermione walked towards the boys, trying to find out what was going on.

"Look, if you'll both just calm down..." Harry was saying, holding his hands up, trying to keep them from killing one another.

"What happened?!" Hermione stood, hands on hips, glaring at her friend and her boyfriend.

"Big man fell off his broom and started blaming me." Ron said, pointing at Blaise.

"You shot a bludger at the back of my head!" Said Blaise, glaring at Ron.

"It's Quidditch, you're supposed to look out for bludgers!"

"You were the fucking goalie!"

"Shut up, the both of you!" Hermione gritted her teeth. "If you both wish to continue being a part of my life, then you're going to have to learn to get along."

"But, Hermione...!" They both shouted.

"I don't want to hear it!" She said. "Now shake hands and start trying to get along or that's it, I mean it."

The two boys glared at each other for a few minutes, before Blaise finally, reluctantly stuck his hand out. Ron stared at it for a moment before reaching and shaking it for just a second, before they both let go.

"Aw, Hermione!" Shouted Fred. "I had 3 Galleons on your boyfriend!"

There was a pop and Mr Weasley appeared at the garden gate. "Well this looks interesting." He said. "What did I miss?"

They all sat around the dinner table, Mrs Weasley running around and spooning large amounts of food onto each of their plates. It seemed a bit strange to Blaise; he couldn't help but wonder where their house elf was. As Mrs Weasley dolloped another helping of food onto his plate, he held his hand up. "That's quite alright, Mrs Weasley, thank you, I have enough."

"Are you sure dear? Well alright." She said as she moved around to Harry and added another five large dollops of mashed potatoes to his plate. "Harry dear, you're looking so underfed, let me know if you want anymore." She said as she added another spoonful of mash onto his plate before finally placing the pan on the stove and taking her seat.

"I will, thanks Mrs Weasley." Said Harry as he stared at the mountain of food in front of him.

"Tuck in everyone." Mr Weasley declared as he began to cut up the lamb chop on his plate.

The Weasley clan began to almost attack their food, it seemed bizarre to Blaise. For as long as he could remember, family meals had only been him and his mother and that required the strictest table manners. Hermione nudged him with her elbow to start eating his food and stop staring at everyone, as soon as he had a mouthful of Mrs Weasley's cooking, he knew why they were so eager to eat it. It tasted fantastic, he made a mental note to ask his mother about hiring a cook rather than letting Barton prepare all their meals.

"So, Blaise." Mr Weasley said as he ate a fork full of mash. "What do you plan on doing when you've finished your NEWTS?"

Blaise looked up from his food and looked to Mr Weasley. "I'm going to join the Gobstones league."

"Gobstones? Well that's... different... Roland Kegg once told me that you have to be very good to be considered for the English team."

Blaise dropped his fork. "You've met Roland Kegg?"

"Oh, no." Ginny looked up from her plate. "Dad, please don't get him started on Roland Kegg, he practically dictated his biography to me on the train home."

Hermione laughed, finding this quite amusing. Blaise just looked bewildered.

They were just finishing off their meals by the time the table conversation had turned to Fred and George giving Mr Weasley a full run down of their new products. Blaise looked like he was politely listening, but his left hand was under the table, running up the inside of Hermione's thigh.

Hermione was trying to make her face remain neutral, attempting to look like she was seriously listening to Fred as he explained the details of their new products, but her mind was elsewhere. She tried to stop herself from shuddering as Blaise's hand moved up her skirt, his fingers squeezing her thigh gently. Finally she could take it no longer. She had to get out of the Weasley's kitchen and be alone with Blaise.

"Would you excuse me, Mr Weasley? I need some fresh air." She looked at Blaise. "Coming?"

He grinned. "Sure, I'll come with you."

Mr Weasley smiled and nodded his head. "Of course, go ahead."

The couple stood up, Blaise placing his hand on the small of her back as they walked out of the kitchen door and out of the house.

"It's so nice to see a young couple in love, going outside to look at the stars. Maybe Molly and I should join them, it's a lovely night."

"I don't think they're going to look at the stars, dad." Said George.

"Well, Hermione might get a good look at them." Fred added.

"Whatever do you mean?" Mr Weasley said, looking at his sons curiously, then finally realising a few moments later, standing up, muttering something about having to get check on his plugs.

Fred, George and Harry laughed. Ginny rolled her eyes and told them to grow up. Ron said nothing, he just stared out of the window.

Hermione and Blaise walked silently down the garden path. Their hands were locked together, thumbs rubbing against the back of the others hand. Hermione led Blaise to a dark part of the garden that she knew couldn't be seen from the house. Resting her back against a large tree, she smiled and looked up at him.

"We could have just gone back to my house, you know." He said, tucking some of her hair behind her ear.

"I know, but I really should be going back home tonight and the second you get me back into your bed, I know I won't want to leave."

"Is that a bad thing?" He smiled, his finger trailing down her neck and hanging on the first button of her blouse. "You wouldn't have to worry about that pesky getting dressed business all the time."

She let out a soft sigh. "You're a very bad influence on me."

"You love it."

"I love you."

Back in the house, Ron was seething. Ginny and Harry had been listening to him rant, but were now becoming rather bored of it.

"He's probably man-handling her out there, putting his great big greasy paws all over her."

"Ron, will you shut up?" Ginny said, looking at her brother in disbelief. "You need to get over it, you're jealous."

"Jealous?!" Ron spat. "I have nothing to be jealous about over him. He's got nothing I want."

"Except for Hermione." Ginny looked at him. "The sooner you admit it and deal with it, the sooner we can get on with our own lives."

Ron's ears started turning pink. "I'm not.. Hermione isn't... I don't..."

"Oh, please. You had plenty of chances to ask her out and you never did and now it's too late, because she told me that she loves Blaise and they've started..."

Harry's hand shout out and covered Ginny's mouth. "I beg you for the sake of my sanity, not to finish that sentence."

Ron pushed his chair out and stood up. "I'm gonna kill him."

Harry shook his head and stood up, standing in front of his best friend. "We can't let you kill him, Ron."

"It's for his own good!"

A week had passed since Hermione had taken Blaise to the Weasley's house, Hermione had gone back to her parents house, her father had remained fairly silent whenever Blaise's name was mentioned, but her mother was being a little easier on her. She'd arranged to meet Ginny in Diagon alley for some much needed retail therapy so now she stood outside of Gringotts waiting for Ginny to arrive, fifteen minutes late, of course.

"I'm late, I know, I know, I'm sorry." Ginny said as she reached her friend. "So where do you want to go first?"

"I'm not sure." Said Hermione, linking arms with her friend. "Wherever really, I just needed to get out of the house."

"Blaise not asked you to go to his?"

"Practically everyday." Hermione laughed. "But I know if I do, I'll never leave, I told him he could take me somewhere nice tomorrow, but today I think I'm in much need of some female company."

The girls started walking down Diagon Alley, Ginny pointing to a particular shop window and dragging Hermione to gaze at the contents inside. "Bloody hell, look, they've got the new cleansweep in!"

"Which neither of us can afford, Gin." Hermione said, shaking her head at her friend. "What's wrong with your broom?"

"Nothing, it's just that ones so pretty."

Hermione laughed. "C'mon, why don't we go have a cuppa in the cafe and then decide what to do from there, you can always come back and stare longingly at the brooms later."

Ginny smiled. "Alright, but you can buy them, I bet you haven't paid for a thing since you got that rich, handsome boyfriend of yours."

"Well he does like to pay for things." Hermione said as they sat on the chairs outside the cafe and waving at the waitress to get her attention. "But when I found out what he gets for a monthly allowance, he seemed really embarrassed about it, it was kinda sweet."

"Two teas please." Ginny said to the waitress as she reached their table, then disappeared back into the cafe. "How much does he get? Is it some ridiculous amount like twenty... twenty five Galleons? How some parents think their children can go through amount of money while their in school is beyond me."

Hermione looked slightly uncomfortable as the waitress reappeared with two cups of tea for them, placing them on the table, Hermione thanked her and gave her two sickles, before picking up the milk jug and added a good amount into her cup. "Well, I don't really think I should be telling you how much he gets." She put the jug back down and added a few spoons of sugar to her tea, before stirring it.

Ginny picked up the milk jug and added some to her own cup, then added a spoon of sugar before stirring it. "Oh come on, Hermione. You can tell me, it's not like I'm going to tell anyone."

Hermione sighed. "He gets 200 Galleons a month."

Ginny froze, her cup in mid air, hanging just below her mouth, after a few moments she raised her eyes to Hermione. "200 Galleons... A month?"

Hermione nodded.

"Bloody hell..." Ginny put her cup down.

Hermione nodded again. "I know, right? I mean maybe he got embarrassed about it because he thinks it's excessive but... "

Ginny frowned at Hermione's sudden pause, and more so at the look on her face. "What? What?" Ginny turned her head to see what Hermione was looking at, her mouth dropped open. Blaise was walking out of Twilfit & Tattings, linking arms with a woman who was definitely not his mother. "It's probably just a friend or something, Hermione..." She turned her head to see that Hermione had disappeared. "Hermione?" She looked around, seeing that Hermione had got out of her seat and was now running Diagon Alley, wiping her eyes with her hand. Ginny moved to get up, until she felt a hand on her shoulder, looking up she saw Blaise smiling down at her.

"Hi, Ginny." He said smiling. "Hermione's not with you, is she? Because..."

"Actually, Hermione was with me, until she saw you with this girl and now she's ran off crying."

Blaise frowned. "This is my friend, Su. She's about Hermione's size, I wanted to get her a present without her knowing." He looked down the street. "Fuck. Well I know what she's going to think now." He handed Ginny a bag. "Look, hold this until I get back." He turned to the girl. "Thanks for today, Su, I owe you one, but I gotta go."

Blaise turned and started jogging down Diagon Alley. Ginny looked inside the bag, she could see some folded material that obviously made up a dress, an expensive one if it came from Twilfit & Tattings. Ginny shook her head and looked down the street. "Fuck."

Blaise looked in all the shop windows he passed, he looked in groups of people, he finally spotted her looking into the window of the Magical Menagerie at a box of kittens in the window. He sighed, relieved for having found her and he moved forward, looking at her reflection in the window. He gently put his hand on her shoulder. "Hey you."

"Go away." She whispered.

"Hey..." He slid his arm around her waist, pulling her close to him. "I'm not going anywhere. You really think I was cheating on you?"

"You were with that girl."

He laughed. "Bloody hell, underneath all those brains, you're still a woman, aren't you? That was my friend. She's about your size and I wanted to buy you a special present from the dress shop, but I guess the surprise is ruined now."

She turned around and buried her head into his chest, he wrapped his arms tightly around her. "I'm sorry." Her muffled voice said. "I have no idea what came over me."

"There's no harm done." He soothed, stroking her hair. "Come on, let's go back and let Ginny know you're ok."

"Ok." She said, nodding her head, she slid her arm around his waist, holding onto him as his arm held her shoulders.

"C'mon on then." He started leading her back down the street. "For a minute there, I thought I was going to have to buy you a whole box of kittens to get you to forgive me."

She looked up at him, her face lit up. "Really?"

The summer holidays flew by and before they knew it, they were boarding the train in preparation in enter their final year. Hermione had divided her time during the holiday between her parents house, The Burrow and the Zabini Mansion. It was the only way she could please everyone. On the train on the way back to Hogwarts, they had reached a compromise, the first half of the journey she'd sat in a compartment with Harry, Ron, Ginny and some of their other friends. The second half of the journey she had joined Blaise in a compartment with a few Slytherins who weren't a part of Malfoy's gang.

They tried to spend every free moment they could together, from revising in the library (while playing footsie under the table), to sitting next to each other in almost every lesson they could. The one night they had promised to take off from their studies, was their birthday. Hermione found it amusing that they shared the same birthday, Blaise said he didn't care, as long as he got to spend it with her.

Hermione stood in her dorm room, checking her reflection in the mirror. She had put on the dress he had bought for her in Diagon alley. It was a midnight blue colour, decorating with many brilliant gems, which formed a tight pattern as they spread up the dress. She hadn't asked what they were as she had a horrible feeling that the dress had cost an exorbitant amount of money.

She had tamed her hair a little with some Sleakeazy Hair Gel, and she had put a little bit of make up on. She tilted her head from side to side, looking at her reflection, the dress looked fantastic, her hair was fine, she was wearing the fire opal necklace he had bought her, still she was sure there was something missing. She finally realised what it was when she meant to make a move for the door, no shoes. She laughed at herself and slid her feet into a pair of blue slipper style shoes that she had borrowed from Padma Patil.

She then started to make her way down the stairs, she paused at Ginny's dorm room door and knocked, she wanted the opinion of her friend, but after waiting a few minutes, she guessed she must be downstairs in the common room. She shrugged her shoulders and kept walking, a smile spread across her lips at the thought of what might be waiting for her in the prefects bathroom, she'd given Blaise the password the day before and couldn't even guess what he might have prepared for her inside.

She was so consumed by her thoughts, that the huge gathering of people in the common room scared the hell out of her when they shouted: 'SURPRISE!' At the top of their lungs, causing her to scream loudly.

"You absolute GITS!" She said, a big smile across her face.

"I guess you were surprised then." Ginny said with a grin, stepping forward and handing her a present. "You look fantastic, by the way."

"Oh.. thanks, it's for.."

"Happy birthday, Hermione." Harry said, handing her another gift. "Hope you like it."

"Hang on, hang on, don't give them all at once, I only have two hands. Let me sit down." Hermione smiled and walked over to one of the sofa's as someone put on some music, the sound of The Weird Sisters filling the room as she started to unwrap Ginny's present. "Oh, Gin, the they're lovely." She said as she pulled out a pair out a set of hand made bookmarks that Ginny had made for her. One had her name stitched onto it, one had a slightly wonky lion, one had a house elf, which made Hermione laugh and the last had a pattern of pretty red and gold flowers.

"Here you go, Hermione." Ron said, handing her three presents, a medium sized one, a large one and a squishy looking one. "The big one's from Fred and George, one's from Mum and the other ones from me."

She had no problem in guessing which one was from Mrs Weasley when she removed a red jumper from the squishy package. In between opening all the presents from her friends, someone handed her an opened butterbeer and a plate of sandwiches. By the time she had opened all her presents, Colin Creevey brought out a cake, she held her hair back as she blew out the candles, really enjoying herself, until she looked at her watch.

"Oh great big buggery bollocks!" She stood up, looking at the time on her watch.

"What's wrong?" Ginny asked as she helped herself to a piece of birthday cake.

"I'm late! I was supposed to meet Blaise almost an hour and a half ago!" She said, turning towards the portrait then turning again to run back up to the dorms.

"He won't mind." Harry said as he opened another bottle of butterbeer. "Just explain that your friends threw a surprise party for you and you lost track of the time, take him a piece of cake."

Hermione ignored Harry and flew up the stairs to her dorm room, she grabbed Blaise's present from the bed and ran back down the stairs.

Harry looked at Ginny, then Ron, unable to figure out why Hermione was making such a big deal of it. "Hermione, calm down. Look..." He looked around at his housemates, most of whom were thoroughly enjoying the party. "Everyone!" Someone turned down the music and all eyes turned to Harry. "Would anyone have any major objections if Hermione brought her boyfriend back to the common room for the rest of the party?"

There was a silence in the room, most people just shook their heads or shrugged their shoulders.

Harry turned back to Hermione. "See, no one cares, just bring him back here."

"Harry, he won't want to come back here. Look, I've gotta go."

"Oh surely he can spend a couple of hours with his girlfriends housemates on her birthday." Ron said, turning the music back up.

"Yeah well, he probably would, if it wasn't his birthday as well." Hermione told him, not waiting for his response as she climbed through the portrait hole and started to jog down the corridor.

Ginny looked at Harry. "It's his birthday as well?"

"Well, how was I suppose to know?" Harry took a drink from his butterbeer bottle. "From what I've seen he's a pretty understanding guy, he'll probably understand and come back here with Hermione."

"Really?" Said Ron. "If it was your birthday and girlfriend turned up nearly two hours late, how would you feel?"

Harry contemplated this for a second. "He's going to be really mad, isn't he?"

Ginny nodded, Ron shrugged his shoulders.

Hermione whispered the password to the prefects bathroom and pushed open the door. Blaise was sat on the floor on a blanket, he looked up at her, their eyes just staying locked for several uncomfortable minutes before he stood up. Hermione saw that he had undone his tie, it hanging loose around his neck, his black jacket was unbuttoned and he had undone a few buttons on his shirt as well. There were many candles around the room, but they looked like they had been extinguished, a bottle of champagne sat opened, next to two glasses, one appearing to be full, but flat, the other was empty.

Blaise walked across the room towards her. Hermione held out her hands, his present still tightly clutched in her fingers. "I am, so, so, sorry. My friends threw a surprise party for me and I was only going to stay a few minutes, but I completely lost track of time and I am SO sorry."

He continued walking towards her, then just stood very still in front of her when he reached her.

"Please say something."

He reached into his inside pocket and pulled out a small box, turning it in his hands, he looked down at her and pressed into her hands. "Happy Birthday." He brushed past her heading towards the door.

Hermione's eyes filled with tears, she turned and grabbed his arm. "Blaise, please don't leave, please. I'm sorry, I don't know what else I can do."

"Let go of my arm." He said, his voice empty, not looking at her.

"Blaise, please." Hermione started to cry.

"Just leave it, Hermione." He pulled his arm away from her and walked out of the door, slamming it behind him.

Hermione shrank to the floor, crying deep heavy sobs.

When she returned to her common room, the party was still going, it was only Ginny who noticed the crying Hermione come back through the portrait hole.

"Fucking hell." Ginny ran over to her friend, putting her arm around her shoulder. "What happened?"

Harry turned to see the crying Hermione being comforted by Ginny he frowned and attempted to start ushering people out of the way of the sofa.

Hermione wiped her eyes with the heel of her hand. "He hardly said anything to me." She sobbed, her mascara smeared over her cheeks. "I didn't even have chance to give him his birthday present." She held up the present she had been carrying, wrapped in green paper. "He just left."

Harry was seething. "Give me his present, Hermione."

"Just leave it, Harry." Ginny said.

"No, I won't just leave it. Hermione, hand it over."

Reluctantly, Hermione held out the gift. Harry took it from her hands and stormed off through the portrait hole, not saying anything.

"C'mon, Hermione, let's sit you down." Ginny said, patting her friend on the shoulder.

Hermione sat down on the settee, Ginny next to her and then a concerned looking Ron sat on the table in front of them.

"Look, Hermione. It's no secret I don't like the guy." Ron said, patting Hermione on the knee. "But he'll probably have calmed down by tomorrow, you'll see."

Hermione looked up at Ron, her lip wobbling a little. "Thanks, Ron."

"So... What did he get you?" Ginny asked as she pointed to the box in Hermione's hand, unable to contain her curiosity.

Hermione looked down at the box, turning it over in her hands before finally ripping off the blue paper and lifting the hinged lid. She burst into a fresh batch of tears.

Ginny looked sadly at the ring inside the box, a heart-shaped fire opal set into a silver coloured band, although she guessed that it was platinum rather than silver.

Harry banged his fist against the wall which the Slytherin common room was located behind. After he had been banging for five solid minutes, the wall slid back and a rather annoyed looking Theodore Nott glared at him. "What do you want?"

"Blaise, now."

Nott sighed and turned, his voice shouting into the Slytherin common room. "Zabini! Potter wants you!"

He disappeared, a few moments later, Blaise filled his place, stepping outside of the common room and looking down at Harry. "What do you want?"

Harry shoved Hermione's present into his hands. "She's crying her eyes out, you know."

"That's regrettable, but it's not my problem."

"Oh, yes it fucking is Blaise. She's crying her eyes out because of you. She's your girlfriend, you shouldn't be making her cry on her birthday."

Blaise lost his temper. He launched forward, pinning Harry to the wall behind him "You know what, Potter? It's my fucking birthday too and don't think I didn't fucking cry after I had sat there for an hour waiting for my girlfriend to turn up and when she finally did, nearly another hour later, she told me that her friends had thrown her a surprise party. You should have fucking told me what you were planning." Blaise said angrily. "I'm her fucking boyfriend, didn't you think I would want to be involved?"

Harry furrowed his brow at Blaise's words; he'd been that riled up about Hermione that he hadn't actually considered that Blaise would be upset, not mad at her. "Alright, alright, I get the point."

Blaise loosened his grip and backed away, looking at the present that Harry had shoved into his hands.

"But are you going to just leave it like this, Blaise?" Harry looked at him. "Are you going to let her sit there, crying her heart out because she knows how much she's hurt you?"

Blaise didn't say anything, he just kept staring at the gift in his hands.

"Are you in love with her?"

Blaise looked up. "If I wasn't, it wouldn't hurt this much."

Harry climbed back through the portrait hole. Hermione was sat next to Ginny on the sofa, just looking at a small box in her hands. He coughed, getting their attention.

"Hermione, there's someone outside who wants to talk to you."

Hermione looked up, wiping her face with her hands. Her tear stained face was red and splotchy. "Can he give me five minutes to wash my face."

Harry frowned slightly. "Actually he told me that if you aren't out there in one minute, he was going to leave."

Ginny scowled. "So he wants to get a good look at what he's done to her, does he?"

Ron stood up. "Alright, everyone out!"

They all looked at Ron, in disbelief.

"Everyone, go up to your dorm rooms, let Hermione have five minutes alone. Does anyone really want her to go out there, when she's this upset?"

The remaining people from Hermione's birthday party looked at each other for a few seconds, then left the room. Harry and Ginny exchanged a look, then glanced at Ron.

"Ron?" Ginny raised an eyebrow.

"Harry, just get him in here, I'm not having Hermione go out there when she's in this state."

Hermione looked at Ron with appreciation and then looked to Harry and nodded. Harry climbed out of the portrait hole and after a minute or so, he climbed back in with Blaise following behind him.

"We'll give you a few minutes, Hermione." Harry said, grabbing Ginny by the arm and leading her and Ron to the foot of the boys dorm stairs; out of the couples sight but close enough so they could remain near to their friend.

Blaise and Hermione remained in relative silence for several minutes, Blaise stood near the exit, Hermione sitting on the sofa. After a few minutes, Blaise walked across the room, sitting on the table in front of her where Ron had been sat previously.

Hermione looked up at him, her teary eyes puffed up. "I'm sorry, Blaise."

"I don't want to hear it, you've already said it twice." He said, pointing to the box in her hands. "Can I have that back please?"

Hermione held felt a fresh batch of new tears hit her, with a trembling hand she handed the box back to him, then stood up to run up to her dorm room and be as far away as the man she was in love with as possible.

Blaise stood to his feet and caught her wrist in his hand before she had chance to move. "I have something to say."

She looked at him, what could he possibly have to say? That he was breaking up with her? She couldn't hear him say it, she just couldn't. "Just... just leave me alone."

"No." He said, softly and then bent down, on one knee, taking her left hand and holding it near to him. "Hermione, I love you. Will you..."

Hermione burst into tears, she couldn't help it, it had been too much of an emotional night. "You bastard!" She started hitting his shoulders with her small fists, sobbing heavily. "You bastard, you absolute, bastard!" She continue to hit him, eventually her arms wrapped around his neck and she collapsed onto him in floods of tears.

He held the back of her head with his hand, his other arm holding her tightly around the waist. "I'm sorry, I'm so sorry."

She looked at him, tears still streaming down her face. "I love you." She held onto him tightly, she didn't know if she would ever be able to let him go.

"I love you, too." He said, holding onto her tightly and placing soft kisses on her tear stained cheeks. He opened the box with one hand and pulled the ring from it's cushion, sliding his hand down her left arm he took hold of her hand and slipped the ring onto her finger. "I'm so sorry, Hermione."

She burst into another set of tears as he slipped the ring onto her finger, pressing her cheek to his and just holding him tightly. "No, I'm sorry, I.. I should have..."

"No, I'm sorry, I was upset and I ruined the whole night for both of us."

She looked at him, then down at her hand, lightly fingering the heart-shaped fire opal stone. "Nothing, could ruin this night."

Then she kissed him.

Hermione's eyes fluttered open, she felt Blaise's hand slid over her stomach and she smiled. "Happy Birthday." She whispered, turning onto her back to look up at him.

"Happy Birthday to you, too."

Hermione ran her hand over her stomach, her half-formed bump protruding from her otherwise slim frame. "She didn't wake me up for a change."

"He must have thought you deserved a lie in." Blaise said, smirking.

"You're going to be in one helluva shock, Blaise Zabini, when I pop out a little girl."

"Pscht, nonsense." Blaise said, smiling down at his wife and then leaning down, kissing her softly on the mouth.

Hermione smiled and pushed him back. "Horny, git."

"It's my birthday." He pouted. "Don't I get a present?"

"Not until I'm awake."

"I know someone who's awake." He grinned, pressing his crotch against her thigh.

Hermione laughed. "You're insufferable. Remind me why I married you."

"Because no one else would have you." He said, smirking and planting another kiss on her mouth.

She moaned into his mouth, and wrapped her arms around his neck, she would be content to lay forever in his arms if she didn't have to get up.

"HAPPY BIRTHDAY'S!" Their door flung open and Ginny stood in the doorway, a bag of presents in one hand, and a pair of balloons in the other, both embossed with a large number 21.

Blaise and Hermione looked at the doorway, glaring at Ginny.

"Should I come back in ten minutes? Give you chance to get dressed?"

Blaise threw a pillow at the doorway, missing Ginny by inches. "Out!"

Ginny laughed and shut the door.

Blaise looked down at the woman in his arms, running his hand over her rounded stomach. "You think we can get a quick one in before she comes back?"

Hermione placed her hand on top of Blaise's and grinned at him. "I love you."


Authors Notes:

Firstly, super special thanks go to my beta, Twiist.

Secondly, I shake my fist at hate2luv, for infecting me with this idea.

Now to all my regular readers; yes, I've gone barmy. Barmy, barmy, barmy.

This is a definite first for me in many senses, first time I've gone against my favourite ship of Dramione. I suppose this is Blamione, isn't it? First time I've ever written Blaise and Draco, not being friends. First time I have ever written Gryffindor characters, without killing them and the first time I've ever sworn to hang myself on the completion on a fanfic.

Note to sug, I'll post you the noose once I'm done with it.

It took pretty much four days of non-stop writing to get this entire thing out. I'm not sure what's happened to my brain, I think it's broken.

I would have split this into chapters, but I kinda just wanted it to be a one-shot. The title took much struggling, it was labeled for over a week as 'headdesk.'

So, anyway, please R&R.

I'd love to hear your thoughts, favourite bits, suggestions for bringing me back to the world of the sane, anything you like really.