((The very last part of this story. I'm crying just posting this. I hope you all like it.))
Seven Years Later
"Malfoy." Harry Potter walked into the cold office that belonged to Draco Malfoy.
Draco looked up from the file he was going over. "Yes, Mr. Potter," he stood up to shake the man's hand. "It's been a while."
Harry smiled slightly as they shook hands, "That it has."
Motioning for him to sit down, Draco put the file on the corner of his desk. "What can I do for you, Harry?"
Harry laughed, "You never were one for pleasantries, were you?"
Draco smirked, "It's not necessarily good to have pleasantries in my line of work."
"I'd imagine not." Harry ran his hand through his still messy hair, "Ginny wanted me to invite you over for dinner tonight. It'll be our first family dinner since James was born and she wanted to get everyone together."
At this, Draco had to laugh. "Yes, and I'm certain Ron would love that."
Harry joined in the laughter. "Indeed, he probably wouldn't. But, Ginny made him promise to not start anything. Besides, Lavender is coming and she's been incredibly hard on him."
"Well, she's caring twins, isn't she? I'd say that's excuse enough."
"Yes, but she's only three months along. Ron doesn't understand why she's so damn grouchy all of the time."
"I'd figure with you having gone through it you'd give him some idea of what to expect." Draco slid his new glasses off his face.
"And I have," Harry leaned back in his chair, "But, he doesn't listen. So, Ginny and I are just letting him suffer." He chuckled. "So, will you be coming along?"
Draco let the smile fall off of his face. Harry knew the answer to this question. It was the same answer as every other time they asked. "I can't, Harry."
Letting out a sad sigh, Harry leaned forward with his elbows on his knees. "The Doctor's said it doesn't look good, Draco. She hasn't shown any signs of improvement in the last seven years. What if she never comes back? You need to stop doing this to yourself."
Draco frowned and nearly winced as the pain of what Harry was trying to say hit home. "I can't, mate."
"Hermione wouldn't want you suffering like this. You come to work every day, go straight to the hospital afterwards, stay there until deep into the night, before finally going home to shower and sleep before waking up the next day to do it again. This is not healthy, mate. You need to let her go."
Draco took a drink from the butterbeer he had on his desk. His mouth suddenly felt dry. "As long as her heart still beats, I can't let go."
Harry sighed and leaned back again. "The doctors at St. Mungo's said that the life support won't keep her alive forever. Her heart will eventually give out."
"If that's true, then I'll be with her when it happens. I can't just let them pull the plug, Potter. I understand why you, your wife, and your family think it would be best. I truly do. But, you can't ask me to do that. I won't."
Harry stood up and out of his chair. "I loved Hermione too, mate. This is no way for her to live."
Draco watched the man walk to the door. "Harry?" Harry turned back. "I can't do that to her. Please understand. I have to have hope. It's the only thing that keeps me going through the day."
Harry's face turned soft as sadness reached his eyes. He missed Hermione every day. But, he knew her and she wouldn't want to be kept alive like this. She was better than that. However, he couldn't help but see Draco's point too. If there was a chance, Harry would take it and hold onto it for dear life. But there wasn't. She was virtually brain dead.
"Owl us if you change your mind." Harry took a step out the door and said, "Say hi to Hermione for me," Before he shut the door behind him.
Letting out a sharp sigh, Draco rubbed is face as he turned his chair towards the wall. Every time Harry or Ginny came to see him it was the same. They would try to convince him to move on and pull the plug on their brain dead best friend and sister. He knew they loved her dearly, but he couldn't understand. He didn't understand how they could give up on her like that. It was beyond his range of thinking. She was his soul mate and the love of his life. He couldn't and wouldn't let her go.
He shook his head and turned back to his desk. A few years after the final war, Draco managed to get his law degree. Instead of working for the bad guys, like his evil father did before he was given the Kiss by Dementors years before, he wanted to prosecute witches and wizards who committed crimes. It's what he's been doing since then. He loved every part of his job and knew that if Hermione was here, she'd be proud of him.
The day of the final war, everyone had thought she was dead. Harry and Draco refused to give up. So after two minutes of working on her, Harry managed to get her heart beating again. They'd rushed her to St. Mungo's where doctors poured several potions into her body to revive her. She never woke up and she's been in a coma since then. Draco visited her every day, his mother sometimes joining him.
Snapping himself out of his thoughts, he decided to get back to work. As he went to grab the file he had been working on, his gaze stopped on the pictures he always kept on his desk. There were three of them and they were his pride and joy. One was of Pansy and Blaise. Blaise was rubbing his wife's pregnant belly affectionately as Draco snapped the picture. The two were married a year after the war ended. Always the fashion queen, Pansy became the biggest wizarding world designer around. Blaise decided to take Draco's path and became an Auror. However, now that Pansy was eight months pregnant he was taking a break from hunting down the bad guys that Draco prosecuted and Pansy was designing robes at home.
A few weeks ago, they had asked Draco to be the Godfather of their baby. A baby girl that was to be named Raven Hermione Zabini.
Like Draco, Pansy didn't want to give up on Hermione. She knew that deep down she was there. One day she would come back. At least twice a week, she would visit her first real friend. Every day she would tell her stories about her career or about the new baby. Every day she would swear Hermione's mouth would twitch. Though, it was never proven.
The second picture was one that was taken their seventh year at the Halloween Ball. Draco had his arms wrapped around Hermione and Pansy was holding Blaise's hand. Hermione looked like Raven then, but she was still the same woman. They were all laughing and happy that day.
The third picture was one that was given to him a few months after Hermione was put in St. Mungo's. It was a picture of Hermione the last day of sixth year. It was the last day she was Hermione Granger until she slipped into a coma. She looked radiant with her books in one arm and waving the other. Ginny thought Draco would like it and he did. Very much so. It was his last link to the girl he truly fell in love with.
Now, she was lying in a bed with a life support system keeping her alive.
"Mr. Malfoy?" His assistant called his name through the fireplace.
"What is it, Parvati?" He didn't need any more interruptions.
"St. Mungo's called. They said there's been a change! They need you over there right away!"
Draco was out of his chair before she finished. There was a change! His heart started to soar. "Parvati, call Harry, Ginny, and Pansy right now and tell them to meet me there! I'm on my way!"
He apparated as soon as he slid his coat on. The familiar smell of St. Mungo's reached him as she landed into the lobby. He didn't stop to talk to receptionist this time. He ran through the crowded halls of the hospital towards her room. This had to be it! It had to be!
He slammed through her door and nearly ran into her doctor. Draco immediately apologized and helped her pick up her things that she's dropped. He genuinely liked Hermione's doctor. She was the best and Draco was paying her a pretty penny to take care of his love.
"What's the news, Dr. Wilmsey?" His excitement was leaking through.
The doctor smiled; good news. "Yes, there has been a change, Mr. Malfoy."
"What kind of change? Is she moving, waking up, what?!" He was shaking, his heart racing.
She laughed at his impatience. "A nurse came in to check on her and said she saw her hand move. I was called and while I was examining her brain waves she started breathing on her own and twitching her head."
Draco smiled and grabbed all his hope, "So, she's waking up, then?"
This was where the doctor's smile faded. "Yes, she is. But, Mr. Malfoy there's something you should know."
"What?" He didn't want to hear this; he wanted to be by her side when she woke up.
Dr. Wilmsey sighed, "She is going to wake up, but you need to understand that we don't know how she'll be."
"What do you mean?"
"I mean, Mr. Malfoy that she drained herself in her attempt to weaken Voldemort. It caused a great deal of trauma to her brain. It's been seven years. You need to understand there might not be any Hermione in there anymore."
Draco's smile fell from him face. "What are you saying?" His heart started to slow down.
She touched his shoulder with her hand, "I'm saying that she might be brain dead."
"But, you said she was waking up!" He was getting frantic.
"And she is! She'll be awake and able to function, but she might have lost all of her brain power. There might not be anything left." Her voice was sad as she watched Draco turn green.
Draco grabbed back at the little hope he had, "But, you don't know for sure! She might be fine!"
The doctor nodded. "She might be. But, please. Prepare yourself. It could go either way."
Draco watched as the doctor left before he turned back to the bed. There laid his love. Hermione was still as can be; looking like she was asleep. She looked just like she always did as Hermione, with only her hair being a little longer. Even in the last seven years age has not hit her features. She looked as if she'd barely aged.
Like he did every night, he slid into the chair besides her bed and grabbed her arm. His heart leaped with the joy of not having to see the breathing tube in her mouth anymore. She enjoyed watching the rise and fall of her chest as she breathed on her own.
"Hermione," he needed to tell her this while she slept; before he found out whether or not she was still herself. "I know you can hear me. I love you. I always have. Even as Hermione Granger you've always caught my eye. It just took you becoming someone else for me to see it." He smiled and held her hand tighter, "I'm so sorry for what I said to you that day. For calling you a mud—muggleborn. That doesn't matter to me anymore, love. You do. You and your caring heart are all that matter to me."
She remained still.
"I need you to come back to me. I need you! I love you. Please, baby, come back to me." He leaned forward and kissed her lightly on the lips for the first time in seven years.
As he began to pull away, her hand squeezed his, causing his heart to lurch. She was responding! "Hermione? Mione?! Can you hear me, love?"
Her eyelids started to flutter and his breath caught. It was really happening! After seven years she was coming back to him! Her eyes continued to flutter as her tongue flicked out to lick her dry lips. Her hand continued to squeeze his.
"Mione?" His voice was low and hopeful.
Her eyes fluttered open. They scanned the room, a confused expression on her face. It wasn't until her gaze landed on him that some clarity leaked through. She recognized him! She weakly lifted her arm and put it to her throat. Draco tried to figure out what she was trying to do. "What is it, love?"
Her wand shook over her neck, trying to tell him she was thirsty.
He finally understood, "Water! Right, water! I'll get you water!"
Picking up one of her Get Well Soon cards, he transfigured it into a cup and filled it with water. Lifting her head, he gently poured water into her mouth. She drank the entire glass before shaking her head. He wasn't surprised. Seven years was a long time to not have a drink.
"Love, can you hear me?"
She nodded and continued to look at him, as if she were trying to mesmerize his face.
"I'm going to go get the doctor!" He stood up, only to hear a whimper from the bed. Turning slightly, he saw her shaking her head side to side, trying to speak.
"No, no, Hermione! Don't speak! It'll just hurt!" He rushed back to her side.
Hermione didn't stop, she kept trying to make out words. Finally, he couldn't understand her, "Dra…co."
"Yes, love, I'm here! I'm here!" He smiled and grabbed her hands.
"You… you're… he… here." She started to cough at the dryness of her throat.
"I am! I've been here every day waited for you to wake up, love!" He kissed her forehead.
"How…" cough "…long…?" cough
Draco started to frown slightly, "Seven years, love. You've been in a coma for seven years."
He waited for the explosion. He didn't know how she would take waking up after all that time. Instead, however, she didn't panic or cry. She just nodded her head. It was as if she understood and knew how long it's been. Before he spoke, he gave her more water and allowed her time to drink two more cups.
She tried to speak some more. "Pans… Pans…Blai…Blaise…. Harry… Gin…"
Draco nodded. "Pansy comes here every week too. Her and Blaise are married now with a baby on the way. Harry and Ginny are married too. They just had their first son a month ago."
She smiled and held him hand tightly. "Name?" she croaked.
He smirked. "Harry's son is named James Sirius. Pansy is naming her baby girl Raven Hermione. After you."
As that sank in, tears formed in Hermione's eyes. "She… she doesn't hate me?"
Draco started shaking his head. "No, no! She loves you, Hermione. She really does. We all do."
Upon hearing his words, Hermione burst out in tears, sobbing uncontrollably. "Love, what's wrong?"
"You… you still love me?" Her voice was clearing up.
He nodded and sat onto the bed next to her, cradling her to him. "Yes. I do, with all my heart. I love you, Hermione Granger for you."
She nodded her head against him. "I know… I heard you." She whispered.
He froze, "Heard me?"
"While I was gone. I heard everything you said." She sniffled as the tears slowed down.
He lifted her face into his hands. "Do you believe me? Can you forgive me for everything?"
She was nodding before he finished. "Yes, Draco. Can you forgive me?"
He smiled. "I forgave you seven years ago, Mione. I love you."
He pulled her into a deep kiss, enjoying the feel of her lips against his. His heart started to beat a mile a minute as he held her. She was awake. She was his.
He pulled away and whispered, "Will you marry me?"
He felt just like that 17 year old kid that asked her to marry him seven years ago. He was just as nervous as the first time he asked. It turned out, he didn't have to be.
Hermione nodded her head, "Yes. As long as you won't mind being married to a muggleborn."
He smiled. "As long as you won't mind being married to a spoiled pureblood."
She smiled and kissed him. As their lips touched, Hermione could hear the hustle and bustle in the hall as her friends ran to the room. She would love to see them again. She would love to get back to her old life. But, right then, at that second, only one thing mattered. Draco was with her. She was right where she was meant to be forever.
I just wanted to say how much I love each and every one of you guys. Your reviews have kept this story going and I'm so sad to see it finally ended. I hope you all enjoyed this story as much as I love writing it. Again, I love you all!