Disclaimer, see chapter 1. I apologize that it's been so long since I've updated! Hope you all enjoy!

Chapter 22

The next few days went by rather quickly. And as the days went by, Hermione found she became more and more agitated with her "body guards." She knew they were only trying to help, but they were driving Hermione's bonkers. She just wanted some alone time, but barely got any.

She silently thanked Merlin that she was doing her rounds tonight with Severus. They hadn't been alone since her Occlumency lesson and Hermione missed him.

Merlin, she missed being alone with him. She wanted to kiss him, talk freely with him! Keeping up the student/teacher façade was hard, especially when she just wanted to snog him senseless.

But still, it wasn't like she had a choice. She couldn't just come out with her relationship, or even tell anyone. That had disaster written all over it for both of them.

She shuddered, imaging what would happen if Voldemort found out. Severus would be in so much danger, and she would be as well. He could die because of her…

The realization sunk in. Hermione mentally smacked herself for not thinking about that! She was putting him in danger because of her selfishness.

But he wants to be with you, just as much as you want to be with him… a small voice whispered in the back of her mind.

Hermione pressed her hands to her head. This was a mess. She had no idea this school year would be so difficult.

A tear rolled down her cheek as she thought of her parents. She still couldn't believe she Oblivitated them. Hermione knew it was necessary, and that she had done the right thing, but still… she didn't think she would have had the guts to do something like that. She knew the charm would most likely be irreversible.

But their lives were at stake… we did the right thing, her conscience tried to reason with her once more.

She put down her quill. Obviously now wasn't the right time to write an essay. And how could she? How could anyone focus on school when there was a war going on around them? Every day the paper was dropped off, and people were being pulled from the school.

There was a knock on the portrait door. Walking over, she opened it to find Harry. She smiled at him, motioning for him to come in.

"Ready to go to the library?" Harry asked, stuffing his hands in his pockets. The two of them were going to try and find some information on the Tom Riddle Jr… hopefully.

"Let me just grab my things," she murmured, running to her room. She shoved some papers and her journal in the bag. Slinging it over her shoulder, she met back up with Harry. The two of them made their way to the library.

The two of them grabbed a table, Hermione sitting there while Harry went to look through the stacks. She tapped her fingers on the desk as she did it, staring out the window. The sun was shining, and it looked like it was a lovely day out. She felt a pang of jealously that she was stuck in here….

She snapped out of it when Harry returned with an armful of books. He dumped them on the table, sitting across from her. They each grabbed a book and began to flip through it.

Hermione heard a high pitched giggle from the other side of the library. Looking over, she saw a younger student staring over at them. Well, obviously Harry. Hermione could tell from the long dark hair that it was Romilda… someone who was currently obsessed with the "Chosen One."

"Who's that?" Harry asked, turning to see who was staring. He cringed when he saw the girl blow him a kiss.

"Romilda Vane," Hermione answered, returning to the passage she was reading.

Harry shuddered. "She won't stop staring."

Hermione laughed. "What would Ginny do if she was here?"

Harry laughed. "Romilda would be lying flat on her ass if that was the case."

The two returned to their reading, when Hermione caught a glimpse of black in the corner of her eye. Turning, she saw a swish of black robes disappear down an aisle.

Hermione quickly stood. "I'm going to go check on something, be right back," she mumbled, hurrying after the shadow.

She disappeared down the aisle, bumping into a solid figure. Looking up, she saw Severus. Beaming, she quickly wrapped her arms around him.

Severus quickly cast a "Notice Me Not" charm, and then returned the hug.

Hermione pulled away, but kept her hands on his chest. "I've wanted to do that all week," she said, a pink color covering her face.

Severus smirked. "I've missed your company as well."

Hermione smiled, finally feeling calm now that she was in his presence. Every felt okay when she was with him. She pulled him in for another hug, inhaling the sweet scent of sandalwood. Severus leaned down, pressing a kiss to the top of her head. Gently, he pulled away.

"I need to go, but I'll see you tonight for your rounds," he said, pressing a kiss to the back of her hand.

Hermione blushed, before grabbing his head and pulling him down for a kiss. It was quick one, lasting no more than a few seconds, yet it ignited a fire within her. Immediately, she wanted to touch him, to feel his skin beneath hers. She let out a soft gasp at the sensation wracking her body.

Severus bit back a groan as he took in her flushed appearance. He needed to leave before he lost control.

"I'll see you later," he said, cupping her cheek gently. In a swish of his robes, he was gone.

Hermione frowned, but knew she needed to get back to Harry. When she returned empty handed, he sent her a puzzling look.

Hermione sat down. "I don't think there's anything here," she said with an air of defeat.

Harry looked up. "But we barely looked!"

Hermione bit her lip. "Harry, if there was anything mentioned about Tom Riddle in these books, they would have been removed by now."

Harry sighed. "I suppose your right. All right, let's put these away. It's almost time for dinner anyways."

Hermione patted Harry on the back. "Don't worry; I'm sure Dumbledore has everything under control. I know it's weird he's having you relieve early memories of Tom, but I'm sure there is a reason behind that. He'll tell you when he's ready for you to know."

The two of them set off for the Great Hall.