(50) Days of Summer by Sugarquills007

Disclaimer: I don't own Harry Potter

Plot: Restoring to her sanctuary in the muggle world, Hermione Granger has completed her sixth year of Hogwarts hoping to eliminate the forces of Evil penetrating the world around her. Thankfully or dreadfully she is roped into a sudden relationship with none other than her nemesis Draco Malfoy who shares the same disgust emotions swirling in them. Forced to forget their history they join up with the help of two friends to prove their relationship worthwhile.

Previously in Chapter 21...

But it was soon to be broken with two amused coughs. Breaking apart with flushed cheeks, mussed hair and slightly swollen lips, they glanced up at the culprits that had tore them apart to find their friends standing with smug expressions on their features; both also be-holding a victorious smirk.

"Sorry, we must be at the wrong table."

23rd Day of Summer...

Chapter 22 – Accidents

Did you ever observe to whom the accidents happen? Chance favours only the prepared mind. ~ Louis Pasteur.

"Merlin Granger, all you had to do was one job."

Hermione started in surprise from the rousing words that were uttered from Draco's mouth. The very same piece of art she was admiring not thirty seconds ago. Hand immediately falling over her slightly heaving breasts, she took a stumbling step back but to find it cut short when a hand flew across to latch around her wrist. She struggled against his hold all the while watching as her morning task blinked open an orb of steel to scrutinize her slightly sheepish caught-in-the-act look. Eyes taking in his roused appearance, Hermione noted his sparkling eyes and the amusing twitches that quirked the corner of his lips and tugged on her wrist once again.

"You sly bastard." She whispered dumbfounded and watched as the tell-tale smirk snaked its way up his lips. "You were awake all this time."

An amused snort followed her response. "Well it's not as if I could help myself." She heard his gruff morning voice and couldn't help but swoon slightly on the spot at the husky tone in which he still held. "You walk comparatively to a stampede of rhinos." He pointed and a dark glaze enveloped her surprise at being caught.

Tugging on her imprisoned wrist, she guffawed and used her free hand to hit his shoulder. "Impossible." She cried turning herself fully towards the blonde twat. "You egotistical, smarmy, pathetic, annoying, infuriating, sneering, atrocious, terrible, despicable blonde git of a man!" She took a deep breath, marvelling at how her vocabulary list quickly swelled with adjectives she used on him.

"Such beautiful poetry." Sniggered the bastard who had the nerve to smirk after conning her, pretending to wipe away tears from his eyes. "I am touched."

"I bet you are." Was Hermione's gritty response as she began to tug ferociously on her locked wrist. "Now that you have spared me your wonderful compliments," Hummed Draco as he felt the beginning of Hermione's tremors. "You can wake me up properly."

Punching his chest, Hermione huffed as she tried to pull herself away from the smarmy wizard. "And pray, how can I accomplish such a task despite you being fully awake?"

The git had the nerve to be in thought.

"Well a kiss might work."

"So will a punch."


It was just past ten and plans for the day have been commenced; only slight thorn to it was the missing shoes of Malfoy. As Alexis set off to pack for the day's events along with her Italian beau, Hermione was rewarded the job of rousing said Malfoy awake. Not that she particularly minded though she did put a hearty protest for show. It didn't prove difficult in her mind till she entered the silent room. He lay there, in a bundle of sheets and skins, head cupped in his firm hands as he slept silently; his sedated breaths filling the eerie silence of the room.

Transfixed by the sudden effects of seeing Malfoy sleep once again, thoughts of making a haste awakening and leaving escaped her mind as she slowly walked up to the Malfoy heir, brows drawn in curiosity as she silently took in his serene-like features. Hermione soon came to a simple conclusion that Tuesday morning; Malfoy truly was beautiful. Broken as his soul may have been, Hermione would have been a fool to deny such a creation. With perfect gold brows and dusty blonde lashes, skin the shade of a porcelain doll and full bow lips. Strong jaw and angel-like locks; Draco was the realm picture of perfection. Everything went to a down fall when she bowed down to temptation and ran her fingers along the lines of his lips. The same lips she was fortunate enough to meet in soft sweet sighs when they shared their secrets the afternoon before.

What the bushy-haired witch didn't know was the angel-like bastard had been roused to reality as soon as the soft click of his given bedroom door had reached his ears. But he had waited. He had waited with baited anticipation as Hermione's familiar scent enveloped his senses. He barely could contain the quickening of his pulse when he felt her small puffs of sighs as he felt her shift inches away from him. Everything came crashing down when he felt her barely there strokes as she brushed her fingers over his lips and he couldn't contain the wishing groan that had lodged itself in the base of his throat. Instead of embarrassing himself, he chose the safer option and mumbled several words that held a double innuendo; trying not to let out a whine of disapproval when he felt Hermione's mingling aura latch itself away from his own.

"Stop blushing as if I saw you naked." His smirk-laced words broke her out of her stupor and she pulled on her wrist again as she caught his smug grin. He caught her wrist, preventing her from hitting him once more.

"Trust me – you'll never get that lucky." She scoffed with a confident glance at the Slytherin.

She heard Draco's gruff laugh and felt her stomach flip. "If only you know how many other girls thought the same thing." He whispered in her ear as she tried to pull herself away. But he was stronger than her and she should have seen his next actions coming from minutes long. She did her best to fight but before she knew it, she was flat on her back with Draco on top of her, pinning her wrists above her head to the mattress with a devilish smirk.

"You're positively foul." Hermione rebuked.

"If by foul, you mean charming; then yes Granger." He smirked as Hermione huffed. "I'm positively charming."

Hermione mock-glared at him through her lashes. "Get off of me, Malfoy."

"Oh no," he said with a laugh. "This is the most fun I've had all week – I plan on enjoying it." He grinned down at her and Hermione didn't know whether to succumb to his game or struggle for her own space.

"You'll be rethinking that plan when my knee finds your bollocks." Hermione threatened, eyes flashing as she dropped her eyes several times, longingly, to his perfectly shaped lips.

If Draco noticed he happened not to remark. "You wouldn't." He was too mesmerized with their game before him.

"Keep this up and you'll find out."

"Hey Granger it's been more than enough time to wake up –" A pair of necks snapped towards the open door where a stunned Italian stood, mouth slightly agape as he took in his comrade's predicament, not failing to notice the proximity. "I'll...ermm...I can see your busy so I'll come a later –"

"Nothing happened." Hermione squeaked, taking the advantage of Draco's attention being held elsewhere, to push him off of her and sit up, fixing her frazzled appearance. "You didn't disturb anything." She clarified as Blaise turned back to them, his eyes taking in her appearance, from head-to-toe. "Malfoy's awake." She finished in a hurried squeak before she dashed off leaving a thick silence to ensue in the boy's awake. Draco followed her fading form with a nonchalant expression though couldn't conceal the edge of irritation of being interrupted.

"What?" Draco broke the pregnant silence with a scowl and sneer as he caught on the look of

"Well," began the Italian with a chuckle as he leant against the doorframe, eyes narrowed in amusement. "Colour me intrigued."

"Zabini," Draco warned in a low tone. "It's too early for you to be a twat. Give me an hour and some breakfast and I can deal with it then."

"Well you would have dealt with Granger by then too and I know there won't be much complaining in that region."

Blaise cackled mirthfully as he skilfully dodged a shoe that came hurling his way.


A swat to the shoulder. "Language."

"I won't be taking it back. And certainly won't be apologizing for it." Sneered the Slytherin. "This is what you classify as fun?" He grounded out as he swatted large insects away from his glistening face and paused short to breathe heavily from the incline. He shot the witch beside him a glare that could cover murder and looked before him; Blaise was at the head as usual, girlfriend beside and Granger leaving her post beside him and following them closely beside. Chloe, he recalled was somewhere to the back of him but he had naught energy to bother checking.

"Just shut up and enjoy nature's creations, Malfoy." Hermione called out with a smile in her voice.

Sneering Draco began to hurry his pace in order for him to fall in place beside her. "Oh I enjoy nature plenty in the confines of my room, staring out of the window, or perhaps heading towards your living room to watch two crickets have sex on that bloody square box; thank you."He remarked dryly referring to the television before abruptly swearing profanities, exclaiming at the way the straps of his bag were cutting into his shoulders. He convinced himself by the second hour that Granger had loaded bricks in his backpack just for sheer entertainment.

He was woken up to be forced into engaging in the muggle activity of wandering around the mountainside and pretending that it was motivation to be around the hedges of nature. Granger and Alexis called it a stroll in the countryside. Or more or less, Hiking. He preferred to refer it as 'One quick way of taking a quick toll to hell.' He honestly hadn't known what he'd said yes to when Hermione had woke him up in the morning with her stimulating curiosity. In fact he was more or less focused on what she had been doing when she tried rousing him to reality and what she had been wearing when she and her muggle friend had been explaining the day's events they had planned.

After several more hours of wandering, Hermione proposed they took a break beside some rocks. He sat down with sheer relief, breathing hard and disgruntled with the amount of work he'd already done for the day. Didn't the Muggle-born understand he was an aristocrat prat that sat at home all day and drank tea? Didn't they know that just from looking at how pale he was, he was not a nature person? His lack of colour was lovingly maintained by his wonderfully conservative lifestyle. He unbuckled his pack and watched the others follow suit.

"Here." Hermione's voice brought him out of his heavy stupor and he looked up in time to catch the bottle of water that was thrown his way. "You look as if you're going to pass out any second now." He sneered at the wink she shot her way and scowled hardly when he caught the tell-tale smirk on her lips.

He took generous gulps of the fluid before shooting Hermione a perturbed glance. "It's a Tuesday morning and you bloody haul me out to the side of a mountain and force me to climb it with the weight of Goyle on my back?" He remarked dryly and didn't fail to catch the roll of Hermione's eyes. "Even Snape wasn't this evil."

"I beg to differ." Rebuked Hermione.

"Stop being so melodramatic Drake." Smirked Blaise from his spot as he wiped away the perspiration on his forehead with the hem of his shirt.

"That's more or less Granger's specialty."

"Keep this up and sore shoulders aren't the only thing you're going to get." Intermitted Hermione seriously though the twinkle in her eyes put otherwise.

"You're fine." Cut in Blaise, pretending not to notice the banter between two ex-foes. He waved his hand in a dismissal manner towards the blonde before resuming his conversation with Alexis who shot Draco a coy wink as she took in his disgruntled manner.

Minutes later in which Hermione laughed at Draco's poorly state and prodded at his buttons did they hear a scream and a colourful range of words being uttered before the ruffled manner of Chloe entered their view. "Alright there Stanford?" Called out Alexis, forging the role of being concerned. Chloe ignored her purposely as she fell on a seat beside Draco. "You look like deadweight."

"Thank you Carter." Wheezed out the blonde and Hermione, always being one for assistance, handed her a bottle of water. The Scot practically snatched it off her hands and finished the cool fluid in under a minute, seconds to spare. Wiping away the excess with the back of her hand she cleared her throat. "I err...have been told to inform you all of an event that you have gratifyingly been invited to." She then proceeded to explain, curt and straight to the point.

"Great." Drawled Alexis sarcastically as everyone's attention fell on the blonde's sudden declaration. "I feel like the popular girl in the world." She mocked glee. "I've been invited by Chloe Stanford –"

"Oh I certainly didn't invite you." Cut off Chloe with narrowed eyes.

"Well you didn't put much of a fight with whoever had enough gall to invite us." Retorted Alexis smoothly, putting aside her irritation of being cut off prior, behind.

"Apparently," began the blonde licking her teeth and glancing at her cousin with sullen eyes, "Damien is a friend of John's –"

"You're new conquest?"

Chloe ignored Alexis and continued. "And proposed you lot come over to the beach party they had been invited to, since y'all are staying over for the holidays and all." By the end of her clipped explanation, Hermione's brows had furrowed together to form a 'v' and her lips had thinned in contemplation whilst Draco's own pursed in doubt and apprehension.

"But we only met Damien once at Holly's party," began Hermione in a reasoning tone; suddenly feeling squeamish at the thought of the young boy who had took a slight interest in her.

"Well you clearly put some sort of enchantment on him as he practically pleaded with John to let you lot come over." Snapped Chloe, eyes flashing. Hermione opened her mouth to protest at her choice of words when someone beat her to the chase.

"Wait," cut off Blaise in confusion. "This Daniel guy –"

"Damien." Corrected Chloe primly.

"Whatever, he took a fancy on you?" He turned to Hermione who frowned at his eloquent choice of words.

"Well I'm glad that is some sort of surprise." She drawled sarcastically and the Italian bit his lip at his own stupidity.

"But he must know you and Draco are –"

"When is this so called beach party?" Draco's question which dripped controlled civilness brought the attention away from Hermione's new admirer.

"Friday." Answered the Scot, slightly hesitant at Draco's attention. "Feel free to drop by anytime." She continued.

"Clothing?" Intermitted Alexis, the bark in her bite, lost.

"Likely swimsuit." Shrugged Chloe and Hermione felt a part of her deflate at the words. When all Chloe received were blank stares, she spoke once again, a replica of her confidence placed over her shell. "Any final questions or are we going to leave it to that?" She questioned.

"Is it necessary for our attendance?" Questioned Hermione quietly and Chloe shot a hard look down at her cousin.

"We'll come." Answered Blaise before Chloe's kettle could steam.

But Chloe had long gone ignored the four after shooting her cousin one last glare, and hand turned back to finding a signal to inform her boyfriend of four new guests; and by that time, Alexis had chosen to drop her attention on Hermione who flushed under the heavy notice. "I never knew you were close to Harrison." She began in a controlled tone.

"Yeah me either." Whispered Draco from beside her, his tone much controlled like her muggle friend; but Hermione could detect his resistance in under a second.

"You may have misheard me. I said I only met him once." Answered Hermione calmly, not reducing to getting flushed and bothered no matter how much she felt. She pulled on a straight face, determined to ignore Malfoy, especially since their last encounter involving Damien began to weave through her thoughts.

"Well by how Chloe exaggerated how he was almost pleading for your presence to be there; that tells a different story Hermione." Alexis said and Hermione noticed how Blaise glanced at his girlfriend in surprise at how cold and detached her words had sound.

"Exactly." Murmured Hermione, looking down and hoping not to be bested by the fact that her friend was looking to turn against her. Her brows furrowed in confusion and slight irritance at Alexis' beginning persistency. "Chloe exaggerated, like you said."

"That's beside the point." Clarified Alexis and Hermione frowned. "He wants you. It's obvious even from the lack of information given." Scowled Alexis and from beside Hermione, Draco couldn't help but put a point on how unattractive it made the muggle look when she gave her friend the coldest of looks. "Even after knowing you're not available to be taken."

That seemed to have been the line bender for Hermione.

"Well I like to keep my options open too you know." She huffed out childishly yet wisely. "What will, after me and Malfoy feign our breaking, I do then?" She dropped her tone as to not let Chloe overhear their conversation and shot her friend a look which held pleading for understanding and disappointment. Draco gritted his teeth as to not let his own disappointment show at Hermione's words. "I thought you of all people would be slightly grateful that someone has paid some sort of interest in me –"

"Oh come on Hermione." Rebuked Alexis with anger evident in her tone. Noticing the look of curiosity shoot their way by Chloe, the muggle lowered her voice to a furious hiss. "You don't even know the guy..."

"My words exactly if I remember the last time." Murmured Draco into her left ear and Hermione cringed as she took in the detachment in his voice too.

"You know better than this –"

"He seemed nice enough when I first met –"

"Why do you continue being so naive?"

"I second that." Intermitted Draco with an arrogant raise of his hand when Hermione failed to respond to Alexis' shrill hiss. Hermione shot him a glare that lacked its venom and he returned the expression with his own steady stare.

Lips twitching in bemusement, she turned back to Alexis whose crystal blue eyes still remained hard. "How is he like then?" She questioned.

"Nothing like the illusion you have of him; that I'm sure of."

Anger ticking in her jaw, Hermione lifted her chin in a defiant manner. "Well what are you going to do?" She challenged. "Stop me from going to the party?"

"And what if I said I did?" Retorted Alexis angrily.

"But I thought we'd told Chloe we'd agreed?" Interjected Blaise, hoping his words wouldn't cause a permanent dent between friendship' or cause one or the other to snap.

"She's not the problem." Rejoined Alexis, her pair of blue eyes narrowing on impulse as Hermione stood up, bag on shoulders and a bottle of water in her hands before walking away to finish the rest of their hike leaving a fuming friend, indecisive Italian and a mindful Malfoy in her awake.

"So am I to conclude from this fine morning's adventure, that you go to your death when away from Hogwarts?" Questioned Draco, feigning casualty as he took in stride beside her. After the little commotion on their second break, the muggle had stormed off too leaving Blaise to follow and cool down which had left the unfortunate Slytherin to spend under an hour under the lusting eyes of Chloe as she attempted conversation; mistaking his previous civilness as interest. Just after their fourth break, he managed to steal the golden opportunity before Hermione stormed off again, to walk beside her hoping that her nerves had loosened slightly.

He took a good look at her whilst awaiting her answer; her hair pulled messily on the crown of her head. She was sweating alright but it was more of a gleam – he couldn't help but stare at where the perspiration shone on her collarbone and across her chest when the sit hit precisely the right way through the thick manes of trees. Her cheeks were flushed, though he guessed it was more of the leftover anger than the walk and her eyes were alive from the activity and again, said anger.

"Yes." She answered him, breaking him out of his daydream of appreciation. And he silently thanked her otherwise he knew something along the lines of drooling were to be done. "And we happen to enjoy hiking, although it's been considerably less enjoyable with you harping about a rock in your shoe or a mosquito hovering around your hair every other minute." And with those words said between them, she shot him a disgruntled look.

Draco stared at her oddly, eyes narrowing as if attempting to read her thoughts. Flushing under his scrutinizing gaze, Hermione turned her stare away. "I find it odd that if you and Carter like it so much, why you had to tag me along?" He questioned and Hermione could detect the undertone of thoughtfulness in his words. "I'll bet my Galleons that you, Granger, knew I would positively hate it."

Hermione hesitated in her answer and Draco felt the curiosity prickle him more as to know why had tagged him along. Before she could answer however, Chloe had miraculously caught up to their leading stead and roughly pushed past Hermione as if wanting to be in lead. Her action that hadn't gone unnoticed caused Hermione to lose her balance and bump into Draco who managed to catch her in time before she toppled to a heavy fall and shot the Muggle a look in which she ignored and had the decency to shrug with a mere 'oops'.

It was only a few short moments later that Chloe found herself clumsily falling to the ground, scraping her knees and hands on the tiny little rocks in their path. Neither Alexis nor Blaise helped themselves to aid the Scot whilst Draco and Hermione stood there.

Innocent bystanders.

"Oh no." Draco said flatly and four pairs of eyes flew onto his rigid form. "She's fallen." He deadpanned seriously. "What a shame."

"Sorry," Laughed off Chloe, beetroot red. "I guess I tripped over a rock." She giggled falsely. "I should watch where I'm going." She said, averting her eyes from the two snakes who simultaneously raised a brown at her sudden display of awkwardness; one, however more coyly than the other. As they turned around to head on, he caught the look Hermione shot him from the corner of his eye. She was biting back a smile.

"Thank you." She whispered to him as they fell back in their route to finish the last level of the particularly large hill.

"I don't know what you're talking about Granger." He said simply. "Accidents happen." Was his excuse.

She didn't bother to hide the grin that stole her features.

"So remind me why that pathetic excuse of a bloke is taken a fancy on you?"

After their last encounter in which Hermione's gratitude proved to him that she had softened considerably, he chose to stop beating around the bush and confront the witch; albeit harmlessly, not wanting her to close off into her own world of childish retorts. He stole several peanuts from the tub she had opened in somewhat a reward after their days' worth of walking up the hill. Much to Draco's pleasure, they were now finishing the day by walking down the very same hill he had to painfully endure walking up.

"Is it that hard to believe if a well-groomed bloke is attracted to me?"

"Depends." Was Draco's unthought-of answer as he stole several more dry roasted peanuts. Hermione shot him a disapproving look. He rolled his eyes at her hard stare, "if it really is a well-groomed bloke as you say then it is very hard to believe." He began and Hermione hit his forearm. "I don't think my small words on violence brought by women is highly unappealing to men hasn't gotten through that head of yours."

"It's only unappealing to real men." Hermione played along, walking ahead as Draco stopped short on her words.

Seconds later he caught up and Hermione laughed mentally at the childish vainness he put up in order for her to re-think her last statement. "I'm a real man Granger." He puffed out proudly and Hermione mock-agreed to it with a nod as she bit into a peanut. Noting her teasing he cocked a brow at her. "Laugh at me all you will; one thing I do know and you cannot deny even if you're mind wishes to do so is that I'm more of a man than that Daniel idiot –"

"Damien." Corrected Hermione and all traces of humour washed off her face at the mere mention of the muggle boy she had met not a week and half ago. Hermione shot him a slightly disappointed glance before closing the tub of rewards and heading on, not bothering to check if Draco was following. "Well you've succeeded in making me feel worse than I already do," she remarked dryly, fully aware that the Slytherin could hear and shooed him off with her fingers. "So I thank you and bid you goodbye."

Draco didn't the bait well. "Why are you suddenly moping?"

"None of your business." Was Hermione's sneering answer. "So take your nosy self away from me."

"Feisty witch aren't you Granger?"

"Touchy ferret aren't you Malfoy?"


Hermione's lips twitched in amusement unwillingly and she idly thought how Malfoy was the one person who could make her laugh when she didn't want to smile. "Just leave it be Malfoy." She then said softly, not wanting to be reminded of the sole reason an argument had corrupted her friendship.

"You know, on any other occasion; check that, every other occasion," Hermione didn't even try to fight the smile that stole her lips, "I would have. But a moody Granger is a boring one."

"Well a persistent Malfoy is an annoying one."

"Is it because you and Carter got into a little spat?" He questioned vaguely, missing the tick that popped out on Hermione's jaw.

"You know, I'm getting the feeling you don't understand the concept of one's privacy." Snapped Hermione, her brooding self emerging back to her shell shadow.

"You think I'd be a Malfoy if I did?"

"N, but you'd be a heck of a lot nicer."

Hermione watched from the corner of her eyes as Draco fell into feigning deep contemplation. He broke it with a scoff and the clucking of his tongue. "That's not the way a Malfoy works."

Hermione pulled a face. "I'd like to see the guide book for how a Malfoy does work." She remarked bitterly.

Draco stared at her silently for a whole minute. "Merlin, this fight has turned you into a bitch!" Scowling in surprise at his words, Hermione quickened her pace, hoping that the days' events would finish soon. "Don't blame this all on me Granger." She heard his cocky tone break her guard. "You're the one upset over one argument – Which might I add was a bit pathetic of you two especially since it was over a tosser whose worth half of that kneazle you molest."

The sound of skin hitting skin weaved through nature's soft breeze. Draco turned his head back to find Hermione's blazing eyes glaring at him in indictment and he cocked a brow as she raised a shaking finger at him. And for some unbeknownst reason, Draco found himself tingling from the tip of his fingers at the anticipation of getting into an argument.

And it wasn't till later did he then realise that a certain boundary of his relationship with Hermione had been bordered across and crossed out.

"Don't you dare start blundering out assumptions of which you have no idea where the board line is set." She hissed.

Rubbing his stinging jaw, he loomed over her. "Then what shall I spurt out that will stop making you sound like Weasley and more of the Hermione Granger I know."

Something shifted in Hermione and she knew he knew it. With great courage she willed herself to look into his awaiting cold as ice, eyes but to find something different. He was waiting. Waiting for the expected bait to be used and fired back. But if Draco Malfoy did know Hermione as he alleged, he should've known the losing battle she held with one's own self.

"You don't know me Malfoy."

"I've lived by you near enough to get the basics Granger." He licked his teeth and Hermione turned away from him. He latched onto her wrist and brought her closer. "She'll come to terms with it." He said softly and Hermione looked up at him to see his eyes imploring her.

Breaking their eye contact, she let her wrist free. "Depends on what you mean." She murmured.

"It was an accidental reason for an argument."

"You would know." Hermione retorted harshly.

"I'm starting to wonder how you would react if Weasley broke up with you; or worse, Potter." The second time her hand connected with his face, all use of patience was snapped.

"When are you going to get in your head that not everything is black and white?" Cried Hermione. The turmoil within her not able to grasp the simple reason for her wave of misery. He wouldn't get it. He wouldn't get what the aftertastes of their moments would be spent in; locking herself away and scolding at the born selfishness she had grown during Malfoy's stay. No progress had been done since she had last seen Harry or Ron and no worry for how their friends were doing under hiding.

"Funny, how everything you seem to be is black and white."

His words broke her out of her frazzled stupor and she glanced up to see her hand print bloom clearly on his left cheek. A small tear escaped the corner of her eye as she thought of how possibly; the last moments she would get with her friend would be left in an argument. How her allegiance has changed its firm course over the first few weeks of the holidays. How she had deeply fallen for the mighty and realised too late that it was much too late to save herself from the situation.

"Well I guess then Malfoy, that you're no more stupid than I am."

"You look as if you could do with a shower."

"Or two." Henry supplied in after his wife as they watched the five teenagers fall in a heavy heap on the sofas. "I'm guessing hiking wasn't enjoyable for the boys." He questioned noting the dreary faces of two Slytherins.

"It was grand." Drawled out Draco and Hermione nudged his rib with her elbow with a disapproving frown at his manners. The two had agreed to leave their last conversation as something that had been a one-off but wasn't one to be ignored; now they leant against one another on the sofa, Draco's head falling into Hermione's lap. "It was something different." He concluded earning a short smile to escape Hermione's lips.

"Well different is good." Smiled Jane warmly. "If you'd like, we could order for dinner instead of –"

"Yes!" Announced Alexis as she fell into Blaise' embrace. Flushing at her rude exclamation she smiled sheepishly at the amused Granger. "I mean if it isn't too much hassle, Mrs G."

"Well get yourself washed and ready, I'm sure you all would like some sleep." After giving the teenagers one last once-over, she remarked with laughter. "I think Chloe's well on her way for a hearty sleep."

And true enough; the Scot hadn't bothered to unpack her backpack as she lay sprawled on the armchair, her head curled awkwardly by her side.

"Has she apologized to you yet?"

"One could wish."

Blaise shot the silent witch an apologetic glance as he watched her scuffle around in her room for her toiletry requirements. He took notice of her when he was sure Alexis wasn't noticing and came into a simple solution not long after. Both friends were miserable with the knowing fact that there was a bump to their road of amity. But from silent observing through their years of Hogwarts, Blaise knew that the witch was much more stubborn yet undeniably forgiving that it was near impossible for the grudge to be held; but it seemed now, that his girlfriend had decided t keep things on hold. He suspected it was pride.

"She'll come round."

Hermione snorted lightly but it didn't go unheard by Blaise. "Where haven't I heard that before?" She muttered to herself before a realisation dawned to her. She whipped around to face the Italian who seemed to be watching her as he leant against the doorframe of her room. "You think Alexis should be the first to apologize?"

"I don't think; I know." Shrugged Blaise. Hermione seemed hesitant and if a bit, sceptical. "Just because she's my girlfriend, it does not mean that I side with her for every matter."

Hermione's shoulders sagged in relief at his words before the guilt swirled in her blood again, and once more, she was fully aware of her predicament before her. "Well it's nothing that should concern you." She began in a controlled voice before she shot the Italian a concerned look. "This hasn't affected your relationship, has it?" She asked hesitantly, tucking a curl behind her ear.

"How do you do it?" Blurted out Blaise.

Hermione frowned at the sudden change of subject. "How do I do what?" She questioned.

Blaise was the one to seem hesitant this time round. He rubbed the nape of his neck sheepishly as he let his onyx glinting eyes catch her own. "Not break." He said with a frown. "Pretend everything is fine and just hope for the best that things will fall back into its made place."

Hermione's hold on her toiletry items lacked as she tilted her head to fully look at the Italian before her. He lost his eye contact with her and instead seemed to modestly be looking at his feet; something which made a faint ghost of a smile to crack on her frowning lips. "Who says anything about pretending?" She questioned softly and his eyes snapped up abruptly to catch hers in a blazing fire.

"You don't break."

"I do." She contradicted firmly.

"Not like the way I see others do." He frowned and Hermione's brows furrowed as she attempted to read the range of emotions that flickered past Zabini's eyes. "Not like the way I assume you would do."

"Then you, like your dim-witted ferret friend, assume too much of me." Upon her small insult towards Malfoy, a smile hit Blaise' lips before the curious frown replaced.

"How do you do it?" He pressed.

"I don't." Replied Hermione. "I break; just not in front of one's eyes."

"How?" He questioned, wondering how she could manage the inevitable. Most people, Blaise took notice of, had some sort of stress reliever. Punching walls, breaking doors, crying, screaming, cutting, and drinking. But Granger. But Hermione Granger didn't do anything. She just held her head high and continued her way of living. She continued with her noble smiles and charitable aid; appearing to be unaffected by all those around her.

"I'm a woman." Was her simple answer.

And in those three words, Blaise understood something he hadn't understood since he was a young child. Something unfurled within him, and as Hermione shot him a look of somewhat a peace offering for friendship, he saw Hermione Granger in a completely new light.

"You're asking for a punch on the nose again, Malfoy."

"It was an accident."

"So kissing me was an accident."

"Depends on how you see the kiss as."

Hermione rolled her eyes, pushing Draco off of her as she switched off lights for the main rooms. "Stop making noise," she whispered as she felt him move behind her, "Everyone's sleeping."

"S'not my problem."

"It will be when I scream at the top of my lungs if you manhandle me once again." Threatened Hermione and she felt one portion of her guard crumble when she heard his chortles under his breath. And then she felt him. His presence, scent, touch and eyes boring through her and she felt uncomfortable.

Suddenly feeling hot, she opened the porch doors and walked out feeling the mid-august breeze hit her skin pleasurably. "It will only be labelled as manhandling if one protests against such an action." Hermione opened her mouth to retort at his arrogant words when he continued, "And I, Granger, heard no protests coming out of your mouth."

"Well how could I. It was a fugitive was it not?" Snapped Hermione harshly and irritance flashed through Draco's eyes.

"I'm guessing Carter hasn't apologized yet?"

"Can't you just drop it?"

"Well now I can't since you're being a bitch to me."

"And you're being an arse to me Malfoy, so neither of us is happy."

"I wasn't being an arse. I was being nice by sharing my eloquent feelings about how much your pyjamas turn me on."

"Sod off."

"Oooh, not very friendly." Draco grinned at her crumbling facade. "You know you're the only girl I've met that has rejected any sort of compliments by me and make them sound perverted."

"It's because ninety percent of the time, they are."

"I contradict that statement."

"Contradict away." Mumbled Hermione as she waved a hand at him dismissively. What she really needed, was something t distract her mind away from thoughts. Thinking was dangerous territory for her at the moment.

She didn't want to think about her argument with Alexis and how just this silly argument could jeopardize everything she wished to hold dear. She didn't want to know the reactions of her parents if they ever found about an argument. She didn't want to see how disappointed Harry and Ron would be if they ever found about how much research she had done. And how could she tell them? That Draco Malfoy and his Italian wonder had come over for a quick stay over at Granger threshold. How could she face them and tell how she had shared many a moments with their said enemy. And how on earth could she research about Voldemort and his Horcrux's with a suspected Deatheater (or so in Harry's eyes) living just a wall away?

"You know what you need?" Draco's knowing tone broke her out of her worry. In amidst all her concern, she had worried her lip till it was slightly bruised. Draco didn't fail to notice this particular action. "You need a distraction." He stated.

Hermione let a few moments for his words to sink in before she laughed humourlessly. "And how can that be achieved?" She questioned, her voice detached.

"I can think of several things." Replied Draco and Hermione frowned when noticing the strange glint in his eye. "Only if you promise not to scream."

"I – what?" The next thing Hermione knew, his lips were on hers, demanding attention, his hand had curled possessively at the nape of her neck.

All thoughts to push the Malfoy away rushed out of her mind as she lost the urge to breath; Draco's lips were soft but firm, hand and demanding. She had gotten used to his kisses – how different they were from the others she had shared. Viktor was a sloppy kisser but Malfoy made him look like a novice next to his mastery of it.

She was officially made of liquid bones.

He was all that held her together for that moment. Without Malfoy, there was no Granger. She immediately stilled in shock at the sudden thought. And then, his hands cupped her face and she looked up into his eyes which at that moment resembled burning mercury. He was drowning in desire. And she was falling for beauty. Power like holding the swore flowed through her veins. Need like the thirst for water pounded through his mind. He was her addiction. And she was his redemption.

And then that moment ended, leaving Hermione to gasp for air as Draco brought her closer and leant his forehead against hers.

"Wow." Breathed out Hermione once their breaths had calmed down. A smile broke out on Draco's lips and she couldn't help but think how much younger he looked with a grin boring down her. It made his eyes lighter. Sparkling with something she couldn't tell but what she could was that he was smiling down at her. Face vibrant with raw emotion.

"Was that enough of a distraction?" He questioned and Hermione nodded, her eyes falling onto his bruised lips as she nuzzled her nose against his.

"It worked enough." She murmured, her lips brushing against his in a naive manner. "Though I don't think every time I need to have my head cleared, that I go to you for a snog session." She pointed out dryly that made Draco laugh and tighten his hold around her waist.

"I'm not complaining." He nuzzled her cheek and Hermione felt a smile break on her own lips as she felt him hum in content against her cheek. "Carter will come through." He whispered to her and Hermione stiffened before nodding as she felt his soft ministrations to her skin continue.

And there they stood, under the watchful eye of the moon; holding each other as if they were born lovers. Unaware of the peeping tom who had watched their interaction with amusement, contentment yet guilt and regret as she wondered how much it would take for her to lose her pride and apologize.

I'm horrible. Yes - a fight between Alexis and Hermione! :O

Tis horrible, but everything will come to a conclusion and hopefully a happily ever after. ;) I am sorry for the late update - no inspiration for a while till I went Hiking and bam! I was like, there has to be some hiking for Draco and Hermione! Some things do not add up but they will reason and plump up soon and to me, this was a sort of a big chapter as a drastic change has happened between each of their relationships so I hope it isn't too forward and everything is going smoothly. :)

I hope you all have/had a lovely summer holiday and hope for those who are not out to a different place that this Chapter brightens up your day. Expect the next chapter up before the start of September. :)

Milk and cookies.