Author's Note: So this is a one shot. I hope you all like it. First attempt at the Harry Potter fandom, so forgive the mistakes.
Disclaimer: Ivory Tears doesn't own Harry Potter or anything that may be used later in this fic.
Everybody's Happy Nowadays
Five years. It had been five years since Voldemort's defeat. This peace was unlike the time before, when even after he was gone, people still said You-Know-Who as if saying his very name he would appear like the boogeyman from fables. His dark deeds and evil magic were whispered and rumors spread like butter on bread. No, this time was very different.
Harry, Ron, and Hermione were still considered the golden trio. They had gone their separate ways. Harry became an Auror like he had planned. Ron went to play for the Chudley Cannons, and Hermione worked for the school as the Potions Master.
She and Ron had broken up a couple of years ago. They both agreed it was mutual and no tears were shed. Ron actually had his sights set on a pretty little Seeker that played on his team, and Hermione hadn't felt the spark between them after that first year of dating.
Draco Malfoy also had moved on quite well in life. His father and mother had moved away to America, to get away from it all they said. Draco declined to go with him and instead took up the late Professor Snape's position, as the Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher.
Yes, all was well with the world and this is where our story begins…
Hermione Granger was walking to her chambers after class. She had received an owl from Harry telling her that Ginny was pregnant with their first child. How wonderful! She thought. She was extremely happy for them, and Harry deserved to have a good life. She sat at her desk in her study to pen him a letter back.
I'm so glad to hear that! Tell Ginny if she ever needs me that I'm here, even though I'm sure Molly has it covered. And I'm sure, Harry, that you're so proud you could burst. Congratulations! You have to let me know everything as soon as you find out. Do you hope it will be a boy or girl? I'm sure whichever it is they will be beautiful. Listen, I have to run. Professor McGonagall is calling a staff meeting. I'll write you again. Lots of love your way!
With that she tied it to her owl, Gir, and sent it off.
Hermione was leaving her quarters and walking in the direction of the staff room, when Draco Malfoy joined her. His chambers were just down the hallway from hers.
"Granger," he nodded curtly.
"Malfoy," she nodded back.
They walked in silence for a few minutes. Things were better between them since the end of the Great War, but they weren't the best of friends either.
"Harry's having a baby," Hermione tried a conversation starter.
Draco looked at her and smiled wryly, "I didn't pen Potter to gender swap."
Hermione couldn't help but laugh, "No, that's not what I meant. Harry is going to be a father."
"Good for him. Potter will be a good dad."
Hermione smiled at him, "That's nice of you to say Malfoy," she elbowed him. "Say you're not all bad."
He rolled his eyes, "Gee thanks Granger, that makes my day all the more special."
"Why you're welcome."
They arrived at the staff room and Draco held the door open for Hermione. She smiled a thank you and entered the room.
After the staff meeting, Hermione walked to her rooms. Draco caught up with her again.
Hermione looked over at him, "If I didn't know better, I'd say you were stalking me Malfoy."
He gave a short bark of laughter, "No offense but I have other things to worry over than to stalk a co worker."
She grinned, "Sure, sure. You know you want me."
He raised an eyebrow, "Right. I believe it would be the other way around. We all know you're secretly in love with me."
She laughed, "Maybe you should've become a comedian."
"And miss this wonderful opportunity to be with you, Granger? Tsk, tsk," Draco smirked.
Hermione shook her head, "You're so very odd. Well this is me," she gestured to her door, "see you tomorrow."
"See you," he strode off down the hallway.
She shook her head and entered her chambers. Such an odd fellow… no matter. She hummed as she got ready for bed. As she crawled under the sheets, her mind drifted.
Hermione was dressed in her old school uniform. She looked around and realized she was in the potions classroom. Harry and Ron were sitting next to her, and as she looked more carefully, so was everyone else in her graduating class. They heard the door open and in strode the professor. At first it was Snape, but as Hermione realized in her dream that he had passed, Snape's face morphed into that of Draco's.
That's weird, she thought.
"Aw man," groaned Ron, "I didn't study and I just know Professor Malfoy is going to quiz us, I just know it."
"Ten points from Gryffindor for Weasley's outburst."
Everyone glared over at Ron as he turned beet red.
"Now, put away everything except a sheet of paper and a quill," he smirked at Ron, "we're having a quiz."
Everything went kind of fuzzy as Hermione started to put things away. Then the bell was ringing, and she was the last person turning in her paper.
Oh, I hope I made an A!
"Granger, I'd like to speak with you after class."
Hermione mentally groaned, "Yes, Professor."
She looked over to the doorway at Harry and Ron and mouthed, 'I'll catch up later.'
They nodded, shot a hateful glare at Professor Malfoy, and walked in the direction of the Gryffindor Tower.
Hermione faced Draco and noticed him shuffling through papers. She cleared her throat and he looked up.
"Oh yes, Miss Granger," he steepled the tips of his fingers.
She felt oddly nervous, "Yes Professor?"
He stood and walked to the front of his desk, directly in front of Hermione. He moved a stray hair and placed it behind her ear.
Hermione flushed, "Excuse me, I feel this is rather inappropriate Professor," she backed toward the door.
Draco grabbed her arm and pulled her to him.
He leaned toward her and whispered into her ear...
Hermione bolted upright and the bed sheets pooled around her waist. She ran a hand through her mussed hair. What an odd dream.. Her eyes in squinted in concentration, but could only recall bits and fragments. Something about being in class and Malfoy.. She shook her head as Crookshanks jumped onto the bed. She rubbed underneath his chin.
She climbed out of bed, "Come along, I'll make you a saucer of milk."
A happily purring Crookshanks followed her to the kitchen.
Hermione walked to the Great Hall and found she was earlier than most others. A few students roamed about, sitting in small clusters, talking amongst themselves. She sighed to herself, Ah to be young again. She sat at the staff table over looking everyone. She made small talk with Professor Flitwick until he dashed off to ready his room for the first year's lesson.
She felt, rather than saw, someone sit in the seat Professor Flitwick had vacated.
"Morning, Granger," greeted Draco.
She glanced over, "Good morning, Malfoy."
They proceeded to eat their breakfast in relative silence that was broken up with a smattering of small talk here and there. Trying to remember her dream distracted Hermione. She had forgotten about it until Malfoy had sat next to her, and then she had a brief vision of his deducting points from Ron and giving a quiz. She snorted, So typical of them to hate each other even in my dream.
"Breathing issues?" Draco quirked an eyebrow.
"You sound like a pig, no offense," he shrugged, popping some blueberries into his mouth.
She furrowed her eyebrows, "None taken."
He sighed, "What's on your mind? And to think you're the smart one."
"Oh," she laughed, "it's nothing. Just trying to remember some dream I had last night. If I'm not mistaken you were in it."
He gazed at her dubiously, "Me? That's a little precarious there Granger."
"Hey, it's just my subconscious," she winked, "so don't go reading something that's not there."
"Hm, I bet," he grinned, "so what was I doing in your dream?"
"Teaching actually," she took a bite out of her toast, "that's all I can remember. And you were taking points away from Ron."
He tilted his head back and let out a rich laugh, "Really?"
"Yes," she smiled at his amusement. He does have a nice laugh.
"Well, you have just started out my day on a high note," he stood up, "sorry to cut this short, but I have children to bequeath my wonderful knowledge to."
He smirked, "Always."
And with that Draco strode away from the table and out of the Great Hall. Hermione shook her head at his departure. Mental that one.. She laughed aloud and earned a few odd looks from students and teachers alike. She shrugged them off, finished her breakfast and proceeded to her classroom.
As she walked through the winding hallways, she thought back on Ron asking her why she would want to teach.
"Seriously 'Mione, you're way too smart to stay stuck at Hogwarts for the rest of your life," he argued.
"But this is the perfect opportunity for me to grow and learn. Experience is the essence of learning Ronald," she glared.
"Yeah that may be so, but can you handle that day after day? Teaching all those kids, then on top of that all the memories in that place and some of them bad?"
They both paused retrospectively, thinking of past friends and family members, who in that horrible collision of evil and good, made the ultimate sacrifice.
Ron gazed at her tenderly and softly spoke, "I just want you to be happy 'Mione."
She smiled, "I will be, I promise."
Hermione pulled out of her reverie as she entered the classroom. She stood behind the desk and pulled out the ingredients that were going to be used in the next lesson. Students filtered into the classroom, jostling one another and joking around. Everyone sat in his or her respected seats.
Hermione smiled at everybody, "Good morning class."
"Good morning Professor Granger," they monotonously droned.
Another wonderful end to another wonderful day, Hermione wryly thought. She mentally sighed as she made her way back to her room. Dinner had been uneventful. She had sat next to Professor Trelawney against her wishes. She collapsed onto her bed. Crookshanks jumped up and lay down next to her, purring.
"Hey there lovely," she cooed, giving Crookshanks a scratch underneath the chin.
With his petting satisfied, he jumped down and curled up in his usual window perch. Hermione sighed. She then rose up off the bed and performed her nightly routine: eat, grade papers, shower, and finally hit the hay. The last one had to be her favorite. After she had slipped underneath the covers, she let her mind turn over the day's events and eventually dozed off.
Hermione jerked awake. She glanced over at the clock. The bland face read 3:30 AM. She groaned and flopped back down onto the bed. What a weird dream…
She glanced at the clock again. Need sleep... She lay in bed for a few minutes longer until she finally came to the conclusion that she must have sleep apnea. Climbing out of bed, she slipped into some fuzzy slippers, pulled on a robe, and decided a nice walk would help.
Hermione stepped out into the hallway. Glancing around, she realized how quiet the castle was at night. She aimlessly walked and found her feet were leading her to the astronomy tower. After she had climbed the winding stairway, she conjured a small bench to sit and look at the night sky.
A voice pulled her from her musings, "Can't sleep?"
Startled she turned to look behind her. Draco stepped out of the shadowed corner on the opposite side of the room.
"Good lord Malfoy, you scared the bejeezus out of me!"
He smirked, "Bejeezus?"
She rolled her eyes, "You know what I meant. Why are you up here?"
Muttering under her breath she added, "Besides scaring innocent bystanders."
He mock glared, "Actually no. I couldn't sleep. I always come up here when that happens."
"Ah. Well to answer your earlier question, no I can't sleep either."
He nodded then gestured to the bench, "Mind if I join you?"
"Sure," she moved over to give him room.
She nodded, "So you come up here when you can't sleep? How many times a week is that?"
He gazed out over the school grounds, "Four to five times usually."
Hermione studied his features, "Bad dreams?"
Draco only nodded without looking over.
"I could make you a sleeping draught you know? It wouldn't be any problem."
He turned and looked at her wryly, "Thanks but no thanks. I hate taking any type of potions. Besides it doesn't bother me, I've gotten used to it."
"Well alright, but don't hesitate to ask. Even if it's in the middle of the night, it won't bother me. Ok?"
She bit her lip worriedly. He gazed at her for a moment, his facial expression unreadable.
He then smiled softly, "Thanks Granger. You're a good person."
She smiled back at him relieved.
"You're welcome. And I suppose so, it's just I hate knowing I can help someone and not try to do anything about it. I guess that makes me a little weird," she laughed.
He shook his head, "No, just nice."
She grinned, "Just nice eh? Works for me."
They sat there in companionable silence. As Hermione studied the constellations, Draco studied her. He memorized the curve of her face, the full lashes, her nervous habit of biting her lip, everything. His gaze was drawn to her lips. What am I doing? She's pretty no doubt about it, but we're not that compatible.
Hermione felt him looking at her. At first she didn't mind, but as time wore on she began to feel self-conscious. A slow blush was creeping along her cheeks. She cleared her throat and turned to face him. His gaze met hers and she gave him a shy smile.
"I better be getting back or I'll be utterly useless tomorrow," she laughed.
He grinned, "Yes, I should too."
They both stood and Hermione muttered a spell in which the bench disappeared. As they were walking down the stairs, Draco in front with Hermione following, she tripped. She clenched her eyes together tightly awaiting the impact.
Warm arms encompassed her and a smug voice was in her ear, "Walk much?"
Her eyes sprang open. She then realized she was looking into a pair of sliver orbs filled with amusement.
Blushing she pushed back and regained her balance, "Yes, I just miss-stepped is all."
Her only answer was a cocky grin. Huffing, Hermione brushed past him and continued to make her way down the stairs. As she was striding through the corridors, he caught up to her.
"Sorry for saving your neck back there Granger, if I knew you were going to get all prissy I would've just let you tumble down the stairwell."
She glanced over at him and stuck out her tongue.
He grinned, "Very mature."
She turned back to looking in front of her. How dare he gloat, the jerk! I was embarrassed and he knows it. She looked over at him and found him looking at her again. She glared and he smirked.
"You should take a picture, it lasts longer," she quipped.
His grin widened, "Oh, but I have one already."
Her eyes narrowed, "Oh really?"
He was looking like the Cheshire cat now, "Yes I do."
"I don't believe you."
Draco slowed to a stop and Hermione followed suit. He put his index finger to his temple and made a clicking noise. She looked at him dumbfounded.
"What in the world are you doing?"
"I'm taking a mental picture. So now I have one of you."
Hermione couldn't stop the laughter bubbling through her lips.
"You're so corny, Malfoy."
"Maybe so, but you laughed, so that means you're not mad at me anymore. Right?"
She smiled, "Oh alright, I'm not mad. I wasn't to begin with, just a little peeved."
He raised an eyebrow, "Mm-hm."
"It's the truth."
He chuckled, "I know, I just like pulling your leg."
She scrunched up her nose, "Hardy har."
Draco looked at her with fake shock, "Since when were you a pirate?"
She rolled her eyes and smiled, "You are so weird."
He shrugged, "Eh, makes me more interesting."
They stopped in front of Hermione's room.
"Good night, Malfoy. Well more like good morning, but you get the point," she turned to open the door.
He put his hand on her arm and stopped her. She turned back to face him with a questioning look.
"I know this is rather out of the blue Granger, and I know we haven't really gotten along all that well until the past few years. I have this ball to go to, you see, and right now I'm sans date."
She looked at him dubiously, "You've got to be kidding."
He shook his head, "I know it sounds insane, especially coming from me. I will owe you a major favor no doubt about that. The question is will you go with me?"
She sighed, "When, where, and what for?"
He grinned, "Thanks, I had hoped you would say yes."
She tsked, "Not so fast. I haven't agreed yet."
"It's this Saturday actually, at Blaise manor. It's a charity ball for less fortunate witches and wizards."
She bit her lip. It is for a good cause…
Draco looked at her despairingly, "Please Granger, I have to have a date. If I don't it would be like a horse in a zebra herd. Close but no dice."
She shook her head, "Very strange analogy."
"You understand my point. It would be awkward, to say the least."
"Yes, I suppose so."
He looked utterly miserable.
Good grief. Her shoulders slumped in defeat, "I'll go."
He brightened considerably, "Thank you so much, Granger. I definitely owe you."
He turned and strode down the hallway.
"Good night," he waved.
She stood there. He's the oddest person I've ever met, and I've been around a lot of them. She turned and headed into her room. This is going to be a long day.
So the end of chapter one. Forgive the grammatical mistakes and such, still not great with all that jazz. :P Anywho, stay tuned for chapter two! I'm in the final process of going back through and checking for HUGE errors I may have missed. ;) Please review!