Hermione cautiously nudged the heavy wooden door open, cringing when it creaked ominously in the silence. She tiptoed into the dark room, using the moonlight that streamed from the window above the four post bed as her guidance. The stone floor was cool beneath the bare soles of her feet.
She stopped beside the large bed and paused, her brown eyes drawn to the body of the young man who lay sprawled across it.
Draco Malfoy slept on his stomach, his arms thrust out on either side of him. His jaw was slack, his pale, lightly chapped lips parted as they exhaled soft, even breaths. His fine hair, just past his ears, was tousled and unruly about his face. Hermione noted with an involuntary smile that there were the beginnings of stubble on his pale cheeks and firm jaw.
Her eyes – embarking on their favourite journey – travelled slowly down his bare back to where the emerald green satin sheets lay bunched around his waist. The thin material hugged his body almost adoringly, letting Hermione notice every muscle of his athletic build. She had just finished her inspection, her gaze gliding off the shape of his feet, when he rubbed his lips together subconsciously and – his voice a rugged hum - murmured something suspiciously like her name. Her eyebrows rose and she smirked to herself.
"Draco." She tucked her gentle curls behind an ear as she bent to nudge his shoulder. He stirred, frowning, but did little more. She tried again. "Draco, wake up," she coaxed.
He groaned softly and, not opening his eyes or lifting his head, grumbled into the pillow, "What do you wantGranger?"
Feeling her face grow hot despite the fact he'd yet to even look at her, she murmured reluctantly, "I can't go to sleep."
His forehead crinkled as he processed her words. "And what do you suppose Ido about it?"
She frowned stubbornly and bit her lip from snapping an insult. Although she was still cross with him, they both had known that this midnight complaint was inevitable. And although he was arrogance on legs with an ego the size of a Quidditch pitch, she'd had no choice but to silently sneak into his room. She was lucky that with him being Head Boy to her Head Girl, he was only a conjoining bathroom away, or else she'd be stuck writhing about in her bed, trying to find a) some warmth in her sheets and b) some peace of mind.
When she did not answer immediately, Draco's eyebrows drew together and she could just imagine his eyes grudgingly flickering open beneath them, revealing stormy grey irises that stared at her expectantly.
Hermione sighed, his impatient silence provoking more blood to rush to her cheeks.
"Why do you always make this so hard?" she accused childishly, drumming the bed impatiently with her hands, choosing to overlook the scowl that appeared on Draco's face as his body shook with the small vibrations she created. "You know why I'm here."
The frown disappeared with her words and a smirk tugged at Draco's lips. His voice still laced with sleepy tire, he demanded, "Are you naked?"
Hermione looked down at the pyjama shorts and tank top she wore, puzzled, and stuttered, "Well… no, but –"
Draco's face was impassive as he cut in with a superior drawl, "But the little you arewearing is majorly transparent and lacy, yes?"
"Well then I can't help you, Granger."
"Draco!" She slapped the bed once more in frustration before straightening.
Thiswas why she hadn't come here earlier. He was such twat, even after what he'd done to her earlier that day! She was pathetic, that's what she was. It was honestly sad. And that's why nobody knew about it yet, apart from her and Draco, and she prayed to whoever was up there that he didn't tell anybody – though she wouldn't be surprised if it 'somehow leaked out'.
She spun around and was about to start a furious stomp back to her own room – where she should have stayed –when she felt his cool fingers catch her own. She turned around to glare at him, but, much to her astonishment, his eyes were still closed.Yet he knew she was facing him, because Draco sighed theatrically (as if the decision was merely out of unwanted pity) and rolled several times away from Hermione, letting the sheets wind around him as he did. He patted the coverless spot he'd previously occupied and Hermione stared down at it in repulse.
"Sharing is caring," she reminded him acidly, eying the sheets twisted around his body.
Through the whole conversation Draco's eyelids hadn't done more than scrunch up in agitation. Not even now did they open as he tugged at the satin caught beneath him and threw it towards her. A creaking groan scratching at his throat, Draco's hand groped first the pillow, then her thigh and hip before catching her hand and pulling her down onto the bed. She couldn't help but smile softly to herself as she crawled under the covers.
When she lay down, his hand swept to her back, gathering her close. Soon enough, Hermione's legs were tangled with Draco's, the silky hair tickling her skin, and her arms were caught between their pressed bodies, her fingers splayed across his warm chest. His own hand was now on her arm, his thumb gently stroking whilst the other hand cradled his head.
His scent surrounded her, a combination of sweat, and a musky, sweet smell Hermione coupled with that of antique wood. She smiled.
Moments passed in which she assumed Draco fell back into his slumber, so it surprised her when his low, rough hum of a sleepy voice mumbled, "I don't know why you went there in the first place."
'There' meaning her own room. Hermione peered up at him disbelievingly, and saw that he'd finally opened his eyes. As usual, it was as if she were staring into a quarry of silver and jagged stone.
She raised an eyebrow but he continued to watch her impassively.
"Ido," she informed him with only a touch of the anger she held before.
Comprehension dawned on his face and he chortled.
"Ahh, right. What was that word you called it? Oh yeah – degradation."
They'd been in the middle of a very smoothly running Prefects meeting when a Prefect had admitted to not being able to attend his next night's afterhours patrol. Hermione had instantly begun interrogating him (nothing was more important than his role as Ravenclaw Prefect), and Draco had amusedly undermined her authority with the words, "Calm down, you Sex Kitten, you." His words had stunned the whole room into silence and Hermione had stared at him in alarm, dreading that he was going to blow their secret relationship to only the biggest group of gossipy goody-goody-two-shoes in existence. And then she'd repeated, outraged, "Sex Kitten?"And he'd coolly responded, "You look bloody sexy when you get all riled up," and then turning to the male prefects, asked, "Don't you agree?"
And they'd all bobbed their heads in instant agreement like mindless sheep!
She'd started reprimanding him at once for his 'vulgar words', though if it had only been the two of them she probably would have blushed and giggled.
After she'd scolded him into a – rather smug – silence, the meeting moved on to more important matters, but the whole ordeal had been humiliating and degrading in front of the Prefects, and she'd let Draco know exactly how she felt by spending the rest of the day in a stony silence, and then retreating to her own room for the night. However, even as she'd shut her bedroom door behind her, she had known that she was in for a tough, probably sleepless night and that eventuallyshe would be crossing the threshold to be in Draco's arms once more.
It had become a recognised fact in Hermione's mind – and Draco would have to be incredibly thick to not have noticed it by now too – that she just could notsleep without feeling his body against hers, or his breath tickling her hair, or his legs hugging hers, or just feeling his presence.Maybe she could've done it if these private nights – along with their furtive love – hadn't become her secret indulgence, a drug that he offered to her with a cocky smile every time she snuggled up to him for the night.
With his arms around her, nightmares or the day's stress didn't dare approach, and the warmth and safety he radiated lulled her into the most perfect and peaceful sleep that made the nights she spent in her own bed seem cold and restless. It was infuriating at times, that she depended on him to get her full eight hours of sleep. But in moments like these, where all she could be aware of was him,she knew she wouldn't have it any other way.
Draco's hand whisked up so that his knuckles caressed her hair adoringly and a small smile warmed her heart. Her eyes fluttered close contently and she sighed softly as he leant down to gently kiss the tip of her nose.
"Well in that case..." he murmured against her skin, pressing another chaste kiss to her forehead. She nuzzled her face into his chest and he leant his cheek against the top of her head. Burying his lips in her hair and inhaling deeply, he finished; "Welcome back."