I own nothing at all. JK Rowling owns these magnificent characters. I am merely making them do my bidding.
Chapter 1; Walls
It was the same cliché beginning. The beginning of a school year. Time for change. The time of our lives. But this year was different. It wasn't the weather nor was it the fact that she was now in her 7th year.
No. It was the students.
Platform 9 ¾ was noisy and filled with people rushing to catch their train and saying goodbye. Hermione was gripping the handle of her luggage cart tightly and she pushed past crowds of people staring at her.
Her hair was tied high up on her head, pushing the long wayward curls away from her collar to reveal a gleaming maroon badge, glinting in the sunlight.
She'd been excited when she'd first received the letter with her Head Girl's badge. Who wouldn't be? However, she soon frowned. Why on earth would she be chosen for Head Girl by the infamous Headmaster Severus Snape? He absolutely detested her. It was as if it was a kind of sick joke.
Hogwarts was only a shadow of its original self, but it was Hogwarts nevertheless. The only structure of normalcy left in her life.
The summer had been lonely and desolate. She remained in her room, letting the walls crumble, her parents gone far away in Australia and with her best friends in constant danger, it was rather hard not to feel completely and utterly helpless. So she remained in the empty house, cold despite the hot summer air.
Without her usual companions, Hermione stood self-consciously to the side alone, as students and worried parents passed.
The students were the same people essentially, but all with ragged and haggard faces, knowledge glinting in their eyes. Knowledge that Hogwarts was no longer safe. Haunted faces of distress in the place of excited expressions.
Yes. The students had definitely changed.
The platform was no longer as crowded as it used to be. It felt empty in comparison, cold empty air filling in the gaps where students and anxious parents used to be.
Nobody stepped up to speak to her. Not one. They all regarded her with distrust. Nobody wished to befriend an enemy of Voldemort when a Death Eater was Headmaster. Nobody was that stupid. The Prophet named Severus Snape "a brilliant addition to the education system." She hoped to hope she would be seeing as little of the filthy traitor as possible.
She found a few Slytherins throwing her scathing looks now and again, leering grins on their faces.
"Cowards," she muttered to herself but all Hermione could think of was where Harry and Ron were. They told her to stay at school. Told her, no persuaded her, no made her. They told her she would be far more useful with unlimited library resources but all she could think of was how the pair were currently trampling around London unknowing of Death Eaters right at their heels.
Closing her eyes, she pinched the bridge of her nose. She needed to quit worrying. And apparently she wasn't the only one without parents by her side. She spotted a slightly dishevelled ginger head pushing through the crowd.
"Hermione, thank god," she gushed as she finally reached her.
"Ginny," Hermione smiled as relaxed as she could.
"Oh Hermione, it's been a nightmare. Molly's gone bat shit crazy once we realised Ron was missing. You should've heard her, nearly burst half our eardrums."
Hermione smiled. She could do this. She needed to do this. Hogwarts was the only constant left in her life after she'd made her parents leave. Closing her eyes for a second, gathering her thoughts, putting back on the mask of complete reassurance, golden girl, time to shine.
"Well you should've seen the house, it was a complete mess with Mom and Dad on holidays especially with Crookshanks hiding everywhere." It wasn't a complete lie, her parents were technically on holidays, just without her and with no recollection of her and she'd been too out of it to even notice Crookshanks much.
Draco bit the inside of his lip painfully as to not retort to the pathetic, half-assed attempts at insults. He didn't know how most of them had even passed their OWL's in the first place.
Fuck this shit.
Why the fuck was he even here?
Oh he knew, so that dear old Professor Snape as well as the rest of the world could keep an eye on him.
Nobody gave one fuck about him anymore and he didn't give one fuck back.
His fellow peers hating him were one thing, but an entire different thing was his parents.
His pitiable, sorry excuses for parents were off bowing to the very dirty ground of that monster without a single thought of their own son, they were only off the save their own backs.
And now that they'd turned their back on him, he was back to this hole of a place, trying not be noticed, not to speak unless spoken to, not to draw attention so that the Dark Lord would come back and finish his sorry ass.
Yes, Draco knew that vile creature was weak, but as weak as he was, he wouldn't give one second of thought before he would be after Draco to finish the pathetic excuse of a human being be minute he regained strength.
Bloody hell was his life in shambles. Pureblood bullshit. The epitome of everything bad that could possibly happen and all he wanted to do was walk away, hide and forget everything.
Forget the mistakes, forget the memories, forget the long nights of torturous screams either from the dungeons of his Manor or from his very lips.
But predictably, he wasn't allowed to forget. He was forced to come to the very place that held all the memories. The way he screwed up.
The Gryffindor's narrowed their eyes at him distrustingly while the Slytherin's made no secret of how he did not represent their house.
He wondered, maybe if he killed Dumbledore that night. Would things be different? Would he be back here or would he be off serving Voldemort? He wondered if he had a choice, would he go back and kill Dumbledore?
Would it change anything? Would he still be the pathetic mess he was right now? Drinking uncontrollably straight out of the bottle of Firewhisky day and night?
Draco had nothing. Draco Malfoy was nothing.
And boy, would he never forget it.
She tugged along a hazy Ginny through the empty by comparison scarlet red train that was the Hogwarts Express.
Hermione pulled open the last compartment door of the last carriage, finding one figure slumped in the corner with the Hogwarts school robe thrown haphazardly over them, obscuring their face. She shrugged and entered with Ginny following close in suit.
Sitting opposite the slumped figure, Hermione rested her head on the cool glass, looking out to the platform, of huddled loving parents waving their children goodbye. It seemed almost trivial to be returning back to Hogwarts at the state of things, these were probably the last few years some of her classmates would see with the upcoming war, they should be spending as much time as physically possible with their loved ones. But some just needed something to make it seem like everything was going to be fine.
Hogwarts was a solace, but not anymore, not with the grounds crawling with evil and dementors.
However, her and her peers were still on the train ride, and on the journey, there is always room for hope, that Hogwarts would still be the same as it always was.
The rest of the trip passed in amiable silence and they zoomed across fields of green and meadows of cattle. Hermione respected the other girl's privacy and as did Ginny. The only interruption was the shifting of the figure in the corner.
A small announcement was made that they were fast approaching Hogwarts so the two of them got up, reached for their suitcases and quickly slipped into their robes.
Hermione thought she heard a ghostly murmur and a thump behind her and she quickly pulled her robes tightly around her, turning around to find the robe slipping off and a rather tousled platinum blonde muttering obscenities underneath.
Ginny widened her eyes and took a few steps back as Hermione approached him.
"Malfoy?" She murmured.
Draco looked up to find the Gryffindor staring at her curiously, her hair barely grazing the side of his face as he took in a sharp gasp of air. Her hair smelt vaguely of the flowers that bloomed in winter at the Manor by some magical metamorphosis. The flowers in the Manor were far gone by now, an unsettling chill setting over the large expanse of land. He noticed the slight drop of one side on her school skirt and smirked. "You're skirt's still undone, Granger," he drawled.
She quickly pulled away, blushing, her hands fumbling at the zip of her skirt and pulling her black school robe even tighter around her as he eyed her intently. "I'm glad you enjoyed the show, Mr Malfoy," she hissed, menacingly.
"Believe me, I did," he chuckled, raising an eyebrow leeringly. "Maybe you could give me another."
She backed away immediately at his suggestion, cheeks flushing a pale pink as she stood by Ginny. "You're disgusting."
Draco took amusement from her flustered state, observing the way her shoulders would raise marginally as if for protection.
Picking himself up gingerly from the floor, he stretched his fingers that had been wrapped tightly around his wand whilst he rested, his head still pounding from the nightmares but he refused to let the ignorant mudblood see his weaknesses.
Lovely Granger, life must be a walk in the park for her wouldn't it? Everyone worshipped the ground at her feet and nobody questioned her behaviour.
Filthy, he thought to himself.
Grabbing his robe, he smoothed out the creases before slipping into it, turning to the windows.
As he did so, Hermione noticed a glimmer of something pinned proudly onto his chest quite not unlike the one on hers at the current time.
Draco turned around expectantly. "Don't be rude, Granger. I what?"
"Unless you're blind, Granger, yes indeed I am."
"But he's got to be absolutely mad!" She exclaimed to herself. "Please tell me you're joking. Is this some sick joke of yours and Professor Snape's? I don't want to deal with you. Especially not this year."
"Well tough luck, sugar, you're going to have to," he snapped, hand gripping his wand tightly. "And that's Headmaster Snape."
"We're going to have so much fun," she rolled her eyes sarcastically. "I can't do this."
He raised an eyebrow. "As much as I would like to know the inner workings of your complex mind, I have other things to worry about," he pocketed his wand. "But just for a second, humour me, Granger. Why can't you do this? I mean, Hermione Granger, you've been practically begging for Head Girl since you were born. I thought you had more nerve than a coward who can't even deal with one arrogant Slytherin?"
"Why don't you tell me, Malfoy, I thought you were smart. Why are you Head Boy again? Oh yes. Severus Snape. How much do I like traitors? Not very much at all."
Draco Malfoy narrowed his eyes. The ignorant witch really did understand nothing did she? "Severus is no traitor," he murmured, barely above a whisper.
"Keep thinking that. Goodbye, Malfoy," she said with finality as the Hogwarts express slowed to a stop, pulling Ginny out with her, leaving Draco staring wordlessly at where she stood, a whiff of the winter-blooming flowers at his wake.
As she walked down the aisle between compartments with Ginny leading the way, Hermione sighed to herself. She didn't want any attention this year. She wanted this year to pass without notice. She wanted to forget the fact that Harry and Ron had simply left her behind with nothing to hold onto.
And that was how it started. The perfect cliché beginning.
Until the walls began to crumble.
AN: I'm restarting this story as promised. I've grown a lot since I've first written this, and I still love the idea of 'completely and utterly' but I'm going to be changing it a bit. You may like it, you may not. But I still hope you stick with me. Please tell me what you think.
I've got chapters 2-8 already written so this is how it goes. Review a lot, and I'll post faster, review a little, I'll post them slowly.
PS. This pretty much follows the story of Harry Potter with a few changes you will see soon. Hermione is allowed into Hogwarts because the Muggleborn Collection Law hasn't been passed yet, but it will be soon.