Well, I didn't fully realise until I was typing this out, that this here, is the last chapter of Once Upon a Time. It came as a little bit of a shock to be honest. Let's hope that you enjoy it then. :-)
AN - All of the jealousy inducing characters and anything else you recognise belong to JK Rowling (and the various authors of the fairy-tales), and not me. Which is completely not fair, haha, or not.
Groggily I opened my eyes; around me I saw two sofas and an oak coffee table. We were finally back, and with a sigh of relief I looked down and saw Draco beneath me. He looked so peaceful, but I was too excited to let him continue sleeping. "Draco? Draco, wake up." I whispered, tapping my fingers against his jawline.
His nose scrunched with annoyance for a moment before his eyes slowly opened. Blinking at my rather close proximity for a second, I watched a slow grin spread across his face as he took in our surroundings. "We're back."
"Mm hmm." I said quietly from my position on his chest. His eyes focused back on mine, and then my lips were against his. This time I didn't hold anything back as I nibbled at his lips; distracting him whilst my fingers undid the cloak from around his neck.
A low groan rumbled from his throat when I found myself being rolled until I was beneath his solid body. My hands stilled for a moment, but then they began their frantic fumbling again as I now began work on his shirt buttons. His skin was hot as fire when my fingers tentatively found his stomach.
His abdomen muscles clenched. "Fuck Hermione; damn you and your ability to completely destroy me." And then his hands found their way to my stomach as well. My back arched as his fingers trailed their way across my skin, stopping just shy of my breasts. I was in a whole new realm of delight.
"Hmm hmm." A throat was cleared from somewhere behind us and I looked up straight into the eyes of our headmaster. They were twinkling, no doubt at our embarrassment as my cheeks flushed with mortification.
"Pro…Professor Dumbledore." I gasped, springing away from Draco so fast that our heads clashed. I glanced to the side as I stood to find Draco hastily refastening his shirt.
"Miss Granger, Mr Malfoy. Welcome back." He strode away from the bookcase he'd been perusing, his amethyst robes sweeping majestically after him until he was seated on one of the common rooms sofas. I was too stunned to talk. We had just been caught snogging…and groping each other with a rather high intensity; I failed to stifle my groan of despair. I could still feel his eyes on us. "It doesn't seem right to invite you to take a seat in your own common room; but nevertheless I fear I may have to."
We obliged slightly numbly, taking a seat on the sofa across from his. He smiled again, his eyes and lips full of an as yet restrained humour. "I imagine you must have questions; yes?"
"Uhm…whe…" I cleared my throat. "Where exactly did we go?"
"Ah yes, a little creation of mine. Did you enjoy it?" He looked expectant.
"Enjoy it?" Draco asked incredulously. "That bloody place damn neared killed us; on multiple occasions."
Dumbledore smiled as he looked carefully at a clearly angry Draco. "Well, there's nothing like being pursued as a food source to bring people closer together."
Angry spluttering was heard beside me, this was obviously not amusing to my companion. "But why did it pick us?" I asked carefully, trying to stop Draco's imminent outburst.
"Can you not think of a reason Miss Granger?" The headmaster inclined his head, urging me to think it through.
Of course I could think of a reason; taking into account the two people he was currently watching with a knowing glint in his eyes; two people, who until quite recently would spend hours at each other's throats. "You wanted us to learn to work together."
"To a point you are correct, yes. But the experience is only as effective as the participants allow it to be. In your case, I would say it was a success."
"So this has happened before?" Draco interrupted. "If so, then why have we never heard of anything happening before?" His tone implied he would brook no arguments from our Professor.
"Oh my, it happens every year Mr Malfoy. We don't select just any two students to become heads; not by grades, but by who most need to learn to put differences aside. Other students who notice an absence are told simply that you are having a week of orientation; to teach you the ropes so to speak of your extra responsibilities."
"So we've actually been gone for an entire week?" I asked, trying to keep the horror from my voice.
"Yes Miss Granger, only I and the Heads of Houses knew of your true location. You have of course been excused from all homework."
"Bu…but how will I catch up now, a week is a long time Professor." I asked; a new sort of panic creeping into my body.
"Relax Miss Granger, I have no doubt that two students of such intellect and ability, such as yourselves can catch up easily enough. You did survive a wolf attack after all."
"You saw that? Then why the hell didn't you help; she could have been killed?" Draco growled through clenched teeth.
"There was no need; you did a very admirable job of the rescue Mr Malfoy."
"That's as maybe, but it would hardly have promoted 'teamwork' if your most intelligent student had bloody well died, would it?" Draco was on his feet now, glaring furiously at Professor Dumbledore. Without much thought, I reached out and took hold of Draco's hand.
"But I didn't die; I'm still here; thanks to you." I whispered, tugging on the blonds hand until he begrudgingly sat back down. He didn't release my hand though and I had the urge to smile even as I asked my next question. "I couldn't have actually died in there could I?"
I know that I'd thought about it on more than one occasion; but to truly believe that our Professors could put students through something so…potentially catastrophic…it didn't even bear thinking about.
I felt a light pressure against my fingers when Draco squeezed my hand lightly. "No Miss Granger; if a student's heart were about to fail, I'd have been alerted immediately."
"Well that's fucking fantastic, we'd have only needed to get as close to death as humanly possible before you swooped in and saved the day." Draco shouted beside me. He'd moved to the edge of his seat and was now sneering at Dumbledore. I was actually inclined to agree with him a little bit.
Professor Dumbledore's smile never faltered as he took in one seething student and another who was feeling the effects of a major adrenalin comedown. "On that note Mr Malfoy, I believe it is time for me to take my leave. I'm sure your friends will be eager to see you in the morning." With a wink, he swiftly retreated to the door. "Sleep well children." And then he was gone.
Draco instantly slouched back against the sofa. "That guy is seriously deranged Granger; I've never understood why you admire him so much."
"At this precise moment, I'm not entirely sure why either. We could have died; but then again we wouldn't have found this." I looked back down at our still entwined hands as I moved to lean against the cushions of the sofa.
"That's true." He mumbled, caressing my hand with his thumb. We both seemed so exhausted, and were more than happy to sit in a contented silence.
Draco's head was turned towards me, and I could feel his thoughtful eyes watching me. "What are you looking at?"
"Just you Hermione…"
I laughed. "Yeah, I kind of gathered as much; but why are you looking at me?"
"Am I not allowed to look at my girlfriend?"
"Gir…girlfriend?" I spluttered, turning towards him until I could look at his eyes properly. Was he seriously asking me this?
"Hey…I don't let just anyone experience this." He swept his free hand over his body, highlighting his still partially undone shirt.
I scoffed. "Yeah right."
He laughed again. "Fine…you may have a point, but I'm trying to be courteous here. So is that a yes to my question?"
"What question?" That damn smile was doing its job again, working my heart rate up until I was practically having palpitations.
"The 'am I not allowed to look at my beautiful girlfriend?' question, obviously." His fingers were walking their way up my forearm.
I pretended to think it over, chewing on my bottom lip. "I guess that would be alright; as long as I get to look at my boyfriend."
I let him drop my arm and instead found his arm around my shoulders. "Wonderful. So whose bed are we sleeping in tonight? Mine or yours?"
I smacked his arm, wriggling away from the heat of his body. "We will both be in our own beds."
Raising a single eyebrow, his quicksilver eyes looked challengingly at me. "Fine, but we'll see how long you can last with that arrangement." With a smirk he stood up and stretched. "I'll see you in the morning then Granger." And leaving me with one sly wink, he disappeared behind his dormitory door.
"You're a git." I shouted after him. Well wasn't he presumptuous.
My exhausted body almost purred with relief when I finally slid down under the hot water. I hadn't had a proper wash in days, and believe me, scourigify is just not the same.
If I felt relaxed after my forty minute soak in the bath, it was nothing compared the feeling I got as I climbed into my bed. The crisp sheets smelt of their familiar fabric softener, and were soothingly cool against my skin as I sunk deeper into them. Sleep took me incredibly quickly after my head hit the pillow.
"Budge up Granger." I was torn from sleep as Draco ripped the duvet away and shoved me in the hip with his arm.
"Wha…what are you doing?" I mumbled sleepily, barely opening my eyes to look at the topless Draco in front of me.
"I got fed up of waiting for you, so I went for the next best option…your bed." He whispered as he slid under the blanket beside me.
"Mmm." I sighed, automatically turning over so that I could snuggle against his warm body, my head finding his chest to make an acceptable pillow.
"I love you Hermione."
"Hmm, I lurve oo tcho." I mumbled against his skin, falling back to sleep as his fingers raked through my hair.
I hope this was a fitting ending. I haven't tied up all of the loose ends, simply because it gives you guys the option to figure out what happened next...and who knows, there's always the possibility of an epilogue or something.
I hope that you feel the urge to review this final chapter, and let me know your thoughts. All i can say now, is that I hoped you enjoyed it, and I'm incredibly grateful for all of your wonderful reviews. They were awesome.
Until next time, cheerio.