Chapter 1 ~ Thoughts

She's becoming aware of it. Of me.

Yes. It's occurring now, years later. She's returned to Hogwarts, to the hallowed halls that showed her destiny. Power, struggle, loyalty and death.

So much death.

I see her in the halls, let my robes brush against her as I wordlessly pass. My quiet caress . . . softest of intimacies. She looks after me—confused. But . . .

I can feel her.

She's questioning herself, believing her feelings for me are strange, unfortunate and unhealthy.

Possibly, they are.

She could have been anyplace other than here. Her brilliance opened many doors but she chose to return here, replacing Flitwick. She could have earned more money elsewhere.

But—it wasn't the money that appealed to her. I know that now, through her furtive glances, through the way she skitters from my presence but still . . . lingers on the edge.

She wants me.

I don't understand it, but I'm willing if only to take that brilliant mind away from her and replace it with my dark reality.

I am sinner, not saint.

She's tired of saints and sainthood. I can tell every time those brown eyes drop from my cold gaze. I keep it cold, purposely.

It is those things most unreachable that entice, that tempt, that—seduce.

She wants me, but doesn't know how to face it.

I do.

Hermione Granger, you are lost even before you've truly found yourself. If it is darkness you long for, I will show you the depths of darkness, and the ecstasy of that enfoldment.

Silly, silly witch.

A/N: Just something that came to me before bedtime. Thanks for reading.