Tristan waited in the library for Hermione every morning that week. They talked together, studied together, and read together. He was very academic and was on the high honor roll, whatever that was. When he had told Hermione about his 'bad habits,' she had automatically thought that he was a slacker in school. Her stereotypes against weed and the people who smoked it were starting to waver. They had started to falter so much that Hermione met Sarah and Kaylin for lunch on Thursday. They met her on the first floor and started talking to her like they had known her forever.
"Do you like taco salad?" Sarah asked her. Hermione nodded and they jumped into the growing lunch line. Sarah and Kaylin were definitely starting to grow on Hermione. They, too, were total bookworms like Tristan and Hermione.
"So, why did you leave on Saturday night? One minute you were there, and the next you were gone." Sarah said.
Hermione thought for a moment. "I'm just not that into smoking, you know?"
"For sure. Our friend Nic absolutely hates it. He won't even come to a party if there's beer."
"I know, he always makes me feel bad about smoking." Kaylin added. "But I do what I want, and no one can convince me otherwise."
"Easy!" squeaked Sarah, and she and Kaylin pounded fists. Hermione was going to have to start comprehending the useless slang Americans used.
"What does, 'easy' mean?" she asked, embarrassed.
They both laughed. "It means 'cool' or 'dope.'" Sarah said, giggling.
"Oh! So 'dope' means 'cool?'" Hermione asked. They both nodded and laughed, diving into another subject. Hermione decided she needed to practice that whole 'don't judge a book by its cover' thing. She sat with Sarah and Kaylin that day. When the three of them walked past Tristan's table, he smiled encouragingly, but Hermione could tell he was upset that she didn't sit with him and the boys at his table. But she needed girl friends other than Ginny, right?
After lunch, Tristan found Hermione at her locker. "I thought you didn't like Sarah and Kaylin?" he asked, sternly but not unkindly.
"I guess they're growing on me." she replied, irritated. She didn't like the disapproving look in his eyes.
"Well, they shouldn't be. They smoke and drink too much. Sarah's always grounded and all she cares about is having a good time. Kaylin, on the other hand, is a complete menace. She's an even bigger bitch than Sarah sometimes. If I were you, I'd stay away from them." he folded his arms across his chest as they started walking.
"How do you know all this?"
"Because I've partied with them! They're loud and obnoxious. The only person who actually likes hanging out with them anymore is a freshman named Amber."
"Well, I like them, and I think if you gave them a chance you'd like them too." she said firmly. Hermione wasn't going to let Tristan talk her out of liking the only friends she'd made on her own so far.
"I highly doubt that," he retorted, rolling his eyes. They walked to Statistics class together in silence, each lost in their own thoughts. Mr. Schmidt had a partner activity planned for class that was so hard Hermione didn't have any room in her brain to think about her differences with Tristan and Draco. She knew she would have to face Draco soon, but for now she just tried to focus on the problems on the white sheet of paper in front of her that were so much easier to solve than her own.
When Hermione finally reached her room, she was exhausted. Her homework pile was huge, she was pissed at Draco, Tristan was acting like a complete jerk, and all she wanted to do was take a nap. She forced herself through her Lab Chem. homework on homo- and heterogeneous mixtures and went on to English. It was five o' clock when she finished. Dinner wouldn't be served until six, and she was starving. She decided to ask Ginny if she wanted to get something to eat with her.
Hermione knocked gently on Ginny's door. Ginny answered it almost immediately, smiling warmly at her. "Hey, Herm!"
"Hey, Gin. Do you want to get something to eat with me? I'm starving." Hermione proposed.
"Sure, I could really go for some Subway," Ginny murmured as she slipped on her shoes and reached for her coat.
"Sounds good," Hermione agreed.
The winter air felt good on Hermione's face as she and Ginny stepped outside. Subway was a few blocks down from the apartment building, so they were both freezing when they stepped inside, the bell on the door jingling loudly.
They each ordered and found seats away from the cold windows. "I have a problem," Hermione stated as soon as they were seated.
Ginny looked at her inquisitively and she dived into explanations about Saturday. "…I mean, I'm not wrong to be angry, right? He didn't even care! And how long had he smoked in London without telling me?"
"Wow." Ginny's mouth hung wide open with shock. "Draco doesn't seem like the type of person who would do that at all!"
"Yeah, he didn't seem that way to me, either. I can't believe I fell in love with someone who does drugs. I promised myself I would never do that." Hermione's eyes filled with tears, and she blinked wildly, trying to rid herself of them. She didn't want to cry over something so stupid. If she and Draco weren't meant to be, they weren't meant to be, and it was that simple.
Ginny touched Hermione's arm gently. "Well, if I were you, I would make him quit. There's no use avoiding him."
They were silent for a while, each lost in her own thoughts. Ginny's eyes suddenly grew wide and she whispered, "Speak of the devil, and the devil shall appear."
Hermione twisted around in her seat just as Draco and Blaise shouldered in the door, laughing obnoxiously. She leaned against the wall so as to be out of their line of sight. "They're high again, Gin, I know it."
"Let's get out of here." Ginny stood briskly.
Trying to sneak past the boys, Hermione and Ginny hurried to the door. Draco turned to look. "Hermione!" he yelled too loudly, causing the clerks to stare. "Don't go!"
Hermione took a long, painful glance at him and closed the door behind them. They had only walked a few steps when the door flew open again to reveal a distraught looking Draco. "I'm sorry, love. Come here." he stretched his arms and beckoned to her.
She shook her head. "No, Draco. You're high again; I can tell!"
"No I'm not! Blaise and I were getting a late dinner. We were in my room all afternoon studying for Lab Chem.!"
"I don't believe anything you say anymore, Draco." Hermione said as she walked away. Draco grabbed her elbow and swung her around to face him. His eyes were full of anger. "Don't say that!"
Hermione pulled her arm free of Draco's grip and placed both of her hands on either side of his face, gazing at him intently. "You're high, and you and I both know it. I'm done with you."
"Hermione! Don't do this!" he shouted as she walked away.
"It's over." She replied, hot tears blurring her vision. And she met up with Ginny who had walked ahead a few yards to give them space. Draco stood there, frozen on the sidewalk. After a few seconds of staring he punched the brick wall outside of the restaurant and walked back inside, slamming the door behind him.
They walked back to the apartment building slowly, Hermione sobbing into Ginny's shoulder. Ginny stayed with Hermione for a while, trying to distract her from what had happened. But no one understood Draco like Hermione did. He was perfect in all ways possible. How could someone so perfect let himself fall into oblivion with all the other drug addicts? Hermione couldn't stop crying. Just when she thought she was done she thought of something that made fresh tears fall.
After a while, Ginny said goodnight and left, but Hermione barely noticed. She was numb. When the clock said nine thirty she got in the shower, prolonging it as long as she could. The hot water ran over her shoulders and back soothingly. It almost made her forget about Draco. Almost.
She dressed for bed in sweatpants and a warm jacket; the draft from her window was getting colder and colder as the nights crept by. As she slipped under the blankets she tried to clear her mind of all that had occurred that day. Draco's face was as real in her mind as it had been in person. His eyes threatened, his lips curved in a frown and then into a sneer. Hermione opened her eyes and tried to think of something different, but to no avail. Draco's beautiful face kept itself in her dreams all night.
She felt Draco's hand on the small of her back as they walked through Diagon Alley. It surprised her to see that he wasn't ashamed to be seen with her. Though they received numerous glares from various people, Draco only looked at her. His perfect mouth stretched into a smile, revealing his brilliant teeth. Hermione swelled inside at the thought that he was hers, only hers. He leaned down and kissed her passionately on the mouth, making her stomach twist.
Hermione awoke sobbing into her pillow. She repeated 'It's not the real Draco,' over and over in her head, trying to remember the new pothead Draco. But the only person she remembered was the Draco that she had fallen in love with two months ago.
A/N: Okay, guys, I know it's super short, but I had to post something. If you've been on my profile, I said that I've been working on a Christmas story that consists of five chapters. Look for that on December 20th! (: Also, I want to know what you guys think; this is some insight into my life, if you haven't already guessed. Well, read and review! (: