Disclaimer: Only the story idea is mine. The characters you recognize and Hogwarts and such are all J. K Rowling's. Thanks to my beta ashash52009!
A/n: Oh my god! The final chapter :) I can't believe it's over! Well, I told you I would try to have it up before I went back to school, and tada, I succeed! I hope all of you lovely readers enjoy this final piece.
To Get Back What Was Taken Away
To get back what was taken away…
"Are you ready," he asked, breathing on her face.
She nodded, looking more than a bit annoyed. "I suppose I am."
Draco turned his head, watching her closely. "We don't have to do this you know. You don't have to do this. We can turn around and leave right now if you wish."
Hermione looked up at the blond at her side, his hand holding hers tightly. She knew he didn't want to be there at all, for he was perhaps afraid of who he would meet. It had taken some special manipulation of McGonagall to allow two students off campus to journey to Azkaban. But hey, they were both legally adults in the wizarding world, so there was nothing saying they did not have a right to enter those dark walls.
It still didn't make the adventure pleasant. His hand in hers, she turned wordlessly and began the long journey behind their guide to find their destination. Multiple people, horrid in appearance, hung at the magical bars that kept them back, leering. He pulled her closer to him, glaring everyone he could down. Why did they have to come to this place?
Following just behind Hermione, he took a moment to reflect. It had been over a month since the trial, and she was finally back to her old self- with the exception of the blond man behind her being her boyfriend. The uproar that had caused at school had not been pleasant in the least bit, but he thought she dealt awfully well with the criticism spat at her by students about him and the reports of what Ron had done.
He had hexed an awful lot of people for all those comments, after she had herself of course. He got shit for the relationship from Slytherin house as well, but learned long ago to simply ignore the pricks in his house.
That being said, the pricks in Granger's house hand finally come around. He wasn't entirely sure how far she trusted the ginger and Potter as friends, but they talked during meals and she was always smiling. Draco had found he loved her smile more than one would imagine.
The mature calm in which Hermione dealt with peoples hate was inspirational. Had he been the one in her situation, and Granger the helping hand, he would have lost his mind. But it did seem that the bloody girl harbored more self control then he did, although he would never admit to that.
They rounded a corner and a man, who apparently had pushed through the wards, grabbed out at his girlfriend. He snatched her away, but the Gryffindor had the man in a body bind long before their guide ever had the barrier built back up. Draco smirked; it was nice to see her not take shit like that. He could take that as proof that she was well in life again.
Soon, they reached their destination. The guard put a silence spell around himself so that he could stand away from the pair and not hear their conversation, but still be able to hex the prisoner if he got out of line- like trying to hit the female, even through the bars; he simply was not allowed to leave visitors unattended in a place like this.
"Hello Ron," Hermione said, once the guard at stepped back. She let Draco place his arm around her shoulders as her former attacker looked up, and felt better that she had agreed to bring the blond along. The redhead's expression may have been sad, but his eyes were completely livid.
"Hermione," he replied, his voice a bit raw. His eyes roamed over the arm around her shoulders, up to the masked expression on the blonds face. "I see you brought Malfoy with."
"I wasn't coming here alone," she replied, as though it were obvious. She moved closer to Malfoy however, not out of fear but to prove her point. "This place is horrid."
"Yes," he hissed, standing and stalking to the bars. She nearly shied away until she remembered that magic kept him from being able to touch her. "Yes, this place is fucking horrid! And this is the place you sent me to!" He jabbed out at her, the magic keeping him at bay. "It's all your fucking fault!"
"Weasley, it's entirely your own fault," Draco spoke up, raising an eyebrow at the ginger. He wondered if it would be completely inappropriate to hex him at that moment, but the guard may throw him out, so the Slytherin restrained himself. "You don't have anyone to blame but yourself. Your actions led you to this hell."
He huffed, turning away to resume the same spot on the floor. "Hermione is just as much at fault here you dumb arse."
She felt Draco tense a bit at her side, and decided to say something. "Nothing I did got me locked away here," she replied, reaching to grab Draco's opposite hand, the one that was not currently wrapped around her.
The ginger sneered in the dim light, but said nothing. A short silence followed before he bothered to spit something else out. "What do you want?"
"I came to thank you." Hermione said, and his head snapped up, while the blonds turned to stare at her, a confused expression playing at his features, "for ruining my life. If you hadn't done what you did, I wouldn't have found the happiness I now have." She smiled up at Draco. "So although I can't say I like you, or even think I can stand being in the same room with you again after today, I'd like to thank you for not letting me waste anymore time on you."
He jumped up, slamming into the bars of his prison. Draco moved to pull her back, but she shrugged him off; Ron couldn't touch her. "Your fucking bitch," he spat, glaring her down. From the corner of her eye she spotted the guard stepping forwards, so she turned and shook her head, smiling. He was no threat.
"Call me whatever you want Ron," she said looking him in the eyes, "but I am finally through with everything that happened. It was awful, but where it has led me to something I would have never found otherwise."
Ron opened his mouth, but she cut him off. "I refuse to dwell on you anymore. You hurt me and betrayed me, and that's the bottom line. I don't see us ever being friends again, and that is the truth. I didn't come here to talk to you civilly, because there is nothing to talk about. I came here simply because I needed to close this entire ordeal in my mind- I needed the closure provided with talking. So that is all Ronald, and I wish you a happy life rotting away down here."
Anyone with eyes could see that the ginger was livid, but his ex did not stay around to talk. Turning away, she kept a hold of Draco's hand and walked out of sight of Ron, trying to ignore the redheads shouts as she left. Once Ron was out of sight, she turned and glanced up at Draco.
"I need to thank you too," she said quietly, looking down, "for coming with me today and just everything you did to help me."
Grabbing her chin, Draco forced her to look up at him, and smiled. "There is nothing to thank me for, I did everything because I apparently wanted to."
She cocked an eyebrow. "Apparently?"
"Yes, apparently," he replied, just as the guard walked up to them, explaining that it was time to go. Hermione grabbed Draco's hand, smiling, and walked away with him from the one person who had left her broken.
That chapter of her life was over, from the moment she stepped into Azkaban. With closure of the mind came closure of the issue, and she was very ready to move on from those events.
Waiting outside of Azkaban wasn't comforting. The two students could not figure out why the Ministry Auror that brought them could not wait around to return them to school, but the blond had tried to convince her twice now to just apparate back outside the school border and walk. She promptly refused, and kept saying that the Ministry would think something had happened to them if they tried that. He had dropped the topic soon after his third try.
Now they sat in silence. Hermione took this time to reflect on her biggest problem- explaining everything to her parents. It wasn't like they hadn't been informed about the trial concerning the attack on their daughter, but she may have replaced the letter McGonagall tried to send through. So her poor parents only knew about something happening to her, and she had been harassed with letters for weeks now. Tomorrow she would return home- just for the weekend- and explain what had occurred. It was not a visit she was looking forward to.
The Gryffindor glanced over at the Slytherin beside her. They had been dating a brief few weeks- during which time Harry had tried to, calmly, make her 'see reason' more than once- and during that time she had gotten comfortable with the blond. They had not been in a relationship long, but he had, after all, really been the only one around throughout the duration of her rape, and the aftermath. Her friends barely batted an eye her way. There was of course Blaise, but all three of them knew there would never be anything between Blaise and Hermione, that much was obvious.
She reached out and grasped his hand, earning herself a rare smile from the blond. He smiled enough for her liking, but they only ever seemed to be directed her way. Most everyone else received an uncommon grin, or the usual Malfoy smirk. She liked it when he smiled best though, because it really warmed up his face.
Gripping his hand, she thought back to her parents again. However would she explain this? They were already hesitant towards the wizarding world, and the fact that their daughter was raped in it- by a friend, no less- would only promote their hate, even if the same sort of crime was committed in the muggle world as well, she knew they wouldn't focus on that fact.
But Draco had sworn that he would come and help her, even if the idea of stepping into a muggle home made him sick. That fact alone had made her braver. Not only that, but Ginny, Harry and even Blaise offered to come along and help. The support from friends- and a new Slytherin friend- was great, but she wasn't sure yet if it were wise to bring all of those people or not. Her parents were going to be horrified as it was, and dropping three extra people into the problem would do no good.
She rubbed her nose, the cool air causing it to run slightly. Harry and Ginny had come around, but there was still so much distance between them, that she hadn't even told them that her parents were unaware that she was even raped. They thought she was simply going to explain who and why- and thinking about it now, Ginny would probably only make the situation worse, it being her brother and all. Pulling her jacket closer, she leaned against Draco's side and let him wrap his arm around her shoulders.
Was it bad that this was the only person she wanted there to help her? This boy, who had made her life hell for six years, before trying to make it better? Her parents would have a fit when they found out the two of them were dating, but that was a completely different topic she couldn't even worry about right now. Despite everything, it seemed Malfoy had turned out to be an okay git after all.
He even turned out to be better then Ron Weasley.
Glancing up at the man holding her, she smiled. He returned the gesture, leaning to capture his lips with hers. She sighed, happy with the contact. Just sitting there, enjoying his company, his lips, made the daunting task ahead of her seem a bit less intimidating.
When he pulled back and rested his head against hers, he had smirked down at her. Grinning back, she closed her eyes. The hardest part of all of this was over. Telling her parents now, with Malfoy by her side could be tolerated if it had to be.
It wasn't until the Auror arrived that they moved from that position, and Hermione left the gates of Azkaban feeling lighter then she had since school began.
A/n: No, they didn't announce their undying love for each other, and I never planned for them to. The story is too short, and it was based on recovery from what Ron did to her and the aftermath, but not a huge, blossoming relationship between the pair. Yes, I wrote this under romance, but its limited, since it's really just beginning.
Besides, in real life not a lot of people have undying love after a month…
Anyways, I hope you enjoyed this little story. It's only about half as long as the original version I took down, but twice as good :) Thanks for reading, and leave a review to tell me what you thought!
**There is a banner for this and other stories on my facebook page! Check them out! The link is on my profile because links never stay on updates. There is also a sneak preview banner of my upcoming story, Smittenly Bitten. :)