Disclaimer: JK Rowling is the lucky one, not me. Sadly.
Explosions – Chapter 4
A/N: Possibly going to be the last chapter, I'll see how it goes. Hope you have all liked it so far, I'm so happy that at least some people have – those who have favourited/reviewed/put this story on your alerts. It makes me feel like writing more and more (I have actually written a one shot because of the weather at the minute where I live, if you want to read it then it's 'Winter Fun' my only other story!)
What have I done? He's going to hate me forever now, god how stupid am I! Hermione was telling herself off in her mind, as she still sat on the transfigured sofa, unsure of what to do next. Should she stay there or should she head back to her Head Girl rooms? She chose the latter, and made sure to slam his door on the way out.
He had felt her leave the wards, and found himself relieved yet disappointed at the same time. With her gone, he would be able to gather his thoughts and figure out what on earth he was going to do about the girl, no she's a young woman Severus, get it right, his mind butted in. When it came to emotions, Severus was not the most stable man in the universe. His mind is always frantically searching for something that would make the woman he was with to want to leave him, and in the case of young Hermione Granger it was the fact that she was a young woman. She wasn't a girl, but she was by no means yet a woman.
As Hermione lay spread eagle on her bed, her mind was racing. Why had he reacted like that? Had she done something wrong? Did he just feel sorry for her because she had been hurt? Questions like these were coming in and out of her mind, and she found herself unable to come to any conclusions about his actions. She decided that a trip to the library may help her relax. So, at that, she grabbed her book bag and traipsed the corridors down to the library. She went straight to her table, right at the back of the library away from the hustle and bustle of it all. Here, she was often able to find some sense in the most complicated situations or dilemmas or is just a nice, quiet area of the library to get immersed in a book. She was there today for the former. Trying to decipher the puzzle that was Severus Snape. After a lot of deliberation, Hermione began to doze off. Her face was lightly resting on an open book, and her hair was splayed in all directions across the table. It was not the most comfortable position to fall asleep in, but her mind was exhausted. She still couldn't figure out what was going on in that mind of his.
A shadowed figure strode into the library, his wand lit. It was past curfew, and somehow, he knew that he would find her here. He had spent the rest of the day in his quarters, hardly able to function. He was unable to get her out of his thoughts. The way her lips felt against mine. The way she was so comfortable by my side. The way she let me continue to touch her after the burn salve had been applied. He was baffled by her, he had never met any witch like her. He didn't want to let her slip through his fingers, but he was scared at the same time. Yes, scared. He had kept telling himself at numerous points through the day that it was acceptable to be scared but he wasn't used to feeling emotion. He was used to being expressionless, keeping all emotions locked away tightly. Then she had come along, and somehow in one little slip-up earlier that day, she had unlocked all of those emotions and was now at the brunt of every single one of them. Not just love and friendship, but anger and pain too. He didn't want her to have to put up with him, he usually took calculated risks in life, but she had not been one of them. Severus had jumped straight in without looking, and now he was sure he had hurt her.
He was not sure how long he had been standing watching her, and he didn't even know why he was there really. It's to make sure she isn't hurt, he kept telling himself but at the back of his mind it's to apologise. To hold her in your arms. To kiss her.
Hermione began to stir ever so slightly, her back was aching from the awkward sleeping position and she let out a groan. Severus, who had been seated at a table not so far away, watched her become aware of her surroundings but she did not register the black figure. She started to pack away bags into her book bag and stand to leave, when he decided that it was better now than never. He cleared his throat. Hermione looked up, startled. Merlin! How long has he been here? She didn't know what to do, fight or flight, Hermione, fight or flight. Pick one.
She chose flight. She threw her book bag over her shoulder and began to walk away, as she heard his footsteps follow her her speed increased until she was running, as was he. Can he not just go? she mentally screamed. Why won't she even LOOK at me? he asked himself. Soon, Hermione was losing her breath and was running out of options. Suddenly, she felt a hand on her arm, and turned to see him standing there, also breathless.
"Hermione, we need to talk," he said, trying to catch his breath. He's never called me Hermione before, she thought. She looked into his eyes, and they held a pained expression. She didn't mean to have hurt him by running from him, but she didn't think she could face him. She still didn't think she was able to face him. Hermione nodded timidly, and he took her hand softly and led her into an abandoned classroom. He dropped her hand and muttered "Incendio." The few candles in the room flickered to life, giving the classroom a slight orange glow. He didn't use 'Lumos' because he didn't want to strain her eyes, since she had only woken up a few moments ago. See, now you're being considerate Severus, his mind scoffed.
Hermione was perched on one of the desks, picking at her fingernails. He walked over to her and took both of her hands in his. She still did not look up at him though. He cleared his throat for the second time in a very short space of time and her eyes found their way to his. He tried to find any sign of hatred in her eyes, but only found compassion and love. The poor girl has loved you all along Severus, and you shut her out. You stupid, stupid man. "I'm sorry, Hermione," he said, his voice was barely audible but he knew Hermione had heard him because she moved closer to him and wound her arms around his neck. With her face pushed against his chest, he wrapped his arms around her waist and held her close. "I really am sorry," he repeated.
"I know," she replied, and tenderly kissed him on the cheek. They stayed like that for quite a while, just holding each other. It was one of the simplest signs of compassion, but it was enough for both of them.
Hermione stifled a yawn, and said "Sorry, Severus," and at using his given name she looked up at him to check it was okay with him that she called him this (he nodded his approval with a slight smile forming on his lips), "but a girl needs her beauty sleep. Especially when one has double Potions tomorrow..."
A smile was well and truly plastered on his face, and it was a wonderful sight to behold. He looked so happy and carefree when he smiled, and he had laughter lines. Something she would never had imagined him to have. "Well then, may I escort you back to your rooms then?", he said, offering his arm out. She gladly took his arm and they walked up to the Head Girl rooms in relative silence. They did not meet anyone on the ascent, not that they expected to meet anyone either since it was well past curfew by now. They had reached the door to her rooms, and Severus couldn't decide whether to just leave or do something. Before he had any more time to ponder on his decision, Hermione had gotten on her tiptoes and kissed him. It was just a short kiss, but he knew that it had a lot of emotion behind it. He returned the gesture and bid her goodnight.
As Hermione settled into bed for the second time that day, she could not help but smile at how strange her day had been. It was a good strange though. And with that thought, she drifted off into the land of nod.
Severus reached his private quarters and was about to head for his drinks cabinet and pour himself a glass of Firewhiskey when he thought otherwise and decided he would just sleep. He had the girl, he was content with himself and for once in his life did not need to drown his sorrows with alcohol. He went to bed and found himself dreaming of her.
Both were happy, and had found their place. All because of one explosion.
A/N: So I decided to finish it with this chapter so made it a little longer. What did you think? Reviews! I will try and find time soon to write another story, because I really enjoy this! ;D