Title: Waiting

Author Name: Catharina C.P.

Rating: M
Genre:
Slash, angst, tragedy, slight romance
Paring: Draco Malfoy & Harry Potter
Length: 1.300

Warning: Character death. Slash. Blood

Summary: Hermione comes to visit Harry at St. Mungo's.

Disclaimer: All Harry Potter characters herein are the property of J.K. Rowling and Bloomsbury/Scholastic. No copyright infringement is intended.

Author's Notes: English is not my native language. This story has been beta-ed.

Waiting

By Catharina C.P.

Outside, the weather was sunny and lovely. The sky was a bright blue and not a single cloud was seen for miles.

The sun was warm and stood high.

A light breeze could be felt. It was a perfect day. Real summer weather that just screamed for you to go out and enjoy life.

It was the kind of weather you waited for all winter. It was the kind of weather that defined summer.

For Harry Potter, the weather was the last thing on his mind.

He didn't think that much anymore and hadn't for a long time. No one could say if our dear Mr. Potter knew the weather was good. For him the weather didn't matter. Nothing did anymore.

Harry was sitting in a rocking chair in a small room, just looking out through the window. He had something in his hands, squeezing it tight like he was terrified that someone may take it from him. He wasn't in the Gryffindor Tower or home at the Dursley's. No, Harry Potter's current address was at St. Mungo's Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries. He now lived, for maybe the rest of his life, on St. Mungo's, fourth floor.

It was only when the door into Harry's room opened, that the he looked up. It wasn't the person Harry hoped it would have been, because as soon as he saw who it was, he looked through the window again. He kept on staring into the sky, while the person came nearer.

"Hello, Harry," Came the, oh-so familiar voice of Hermione Granger. Harry didn't answer, but for Hermione it seemed like she was used to it, and didn't wait for a reply before she started talking again.

"I've talked to the Healers, Harry. They say you're doing better. Not that good that you'll get out anytime soon, but better," Hermione was whispering.

She had no idea why she did it, but she always did. It just felt wrong to speak any louder. Hermione wanted to give Harry a hug, it was written all over her beautiful, troubled face, but she didn't. It had been a very long time since she had gotten a hug from Harry and she missed it. She missed it so much.

Hermione saw that Harry was holding something.

"Harry, what is that?" she asked and reached out to touch his hand and see what he was squeezing so tightly. But when Hermione's fingers brushed Harry's hand, he flinched. Violently, Harry jumped out of the chair and rushed towards the bed on the other side of the little room. The poor, green-eyed boy was trembling and shaking. He squeezed his hands even tighter, if possible, around his secret.

The girl, now even more sad for her friend, went over to the twitching boy. She was very careful and made sure not to sit too close.

"I'm sorry, Harry. I won't take it from you, I promise. You have to trust me, Harry. I promise you, I won't take it. I just want to see what it is,"

Her light and calm tone seemed to console Harry and he started to open his fist and show what he had.

He smiled when he saw the ring lying in his hand. Hermione did too. Hermione reached out again, but this time Harry didn't flinch and when Hermione took the ring, Harry just kept his eyes on it.

Hermione laughed a little and then said, "So, this is what you're hiding, huh?"

She wasn't expecting an answer, so wasn't disappointed when Harry didn't say anything.

"It's very beautiful, Harry,"

She looked up at him; his eyes were shining as he was looking at the ring. So much love was in those gorgeous, green eyes, and his smile. He looked so alive. Hermione thought it was so unfair, that a boy – man, so young had to be in a hospital for the rest of his life. He could have done so many wonderful things. But most of all, he could have been with the one he loved.

The ring was, indeed, beautiful. It looked like it was two thin rings that were twisted around each other. They were made of gold. In the front there was a big, oblong diamond.

On either side of the diamond there were two small, dark green emeralds. Inside it there were words engraved,

"I love you, Harry. Always had, always will,"

Next to the engraving there were also engraved a beautiful "M". It was for the Malfoy crest.

Hermione gave the ring back to Harry. He took it and held it in his left palm while his right hand caressed the engraving. The way he touched it - it was as if that, that ring was the greatest treasure he had. And it probably was, Hermione thought.

Hermione had one time tried to get Harry to put it on, but Harry had just shaken his head. He never put it on his finger. He just held it in his hand, caressed it, looked at, but never did wear it.

Harry had gotten the ring from Draco the day Draco was killed. They were going to get married, but now it never had the chance to happen. The worst part, Hermione thought, was that Harry still thought that Draco would come and get him.

The day Draco had been killed; they had been at Grimmauld Place 12 in their shared bedroom. Draco had proposed and Harry had been so happy, he cried. They had talked about the date for the wedding, had agreed on the 15th of August, had talked about where they would live, as Harry didn't like to live in Grimmauld Place - it reminded him too much of Sirius. They had talked about the future, about work, what they would do and about each other. Draco had gone down to the kitchen to make breakfast, while Harry just lay in the bed. Draco had told him he would come back and that he couldn't put the ring on his finger, he should wait for him. And Harry did. He waited. He waited and waited and waited, until he just couldn't wait any longer and started to get worried. When Harry came down in the kitchen, the ring in his fist, Draco lay on the kitchen floor dead in a pool of blood. His bare chest stabbed by a knife.

When Harry had seen Draco's dead body he had gone into shock. He did nothing. Not that there was anything he could have done. Draco was dead, and had been for some time by the time Harry had gotten worried enough to go down into the kitchen.

When Hermione and Ron came three hours later, they found Harry in a corner of the kitchen and Draco dead in the middle of the floor. They had immediately called the Ministry, which sent seven aurors. Nobody could get Harry to speak. In fact, they were so desperate that they tried Veritaserum and Legilimens but nothing worked. Harry wouldn't speak and he had shut down his mind. Nothing could get through the wall he had set up.

Harry hadn't said a word since that day, and still, nobody could get into his tormented mind.

Yes, Hermione thought, the worst part was that Harry still waited. Still waited for Draco to come back from the kitchen. Still waited for Draco to put the ring on his finger. But it would never happen. Draco wouldn't come back.

Hermione looked at Harry. He had started to look out through the window again. She smiled a sad smile, said goodbye and told him she loved him. She walked over to the door and opened it. With a last sad look, she closed the door to Harry's room. He would never know that Draco wouldn't come. Even though, it had been such a long time. Time didn't exist in his world anymore.

The green-eyed boy had waited for five years. And he still waited. And he would still wait.

Fin


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