Peppermint Candy Canes

Disclaimer: Harry Potter is the property of Ms. J.K. Rowling.

Summary: A holiday Dramione one shot.

It was 5:30 p.m. on Christmas Eve and Hermione Granger was still at work. She was an executive administrative assistant to the Head of the Department of Magical Mysteries at the Ministry of Magic. It had been 5 years since the end of the last wizarding war and everything was going well in her life, except in the romance department. She and Ron Weasley, one of her best friends since their first year at Hogwarts, had dated briefly after the war, but they decided that they were better off as friends. After Ron, she had dated a handful of wizards and some muggles, but no one struck her fancy. As a matter of fact, she had just ended a horrible relationship with a muggle, Mark Rickson, a few weeks ago. They had only been dating for a few weeks and he had begun to pressure her for sex. She was actually considering sleeping with him when she found out that he was seeing two other girls. Hermione had given up on the male species for the time being.

There was a skeleton crew that worked on Christmas Eve and most everyone had left the Ministry before 5 p.m. They all had families to go home to or perhaps friends to celebrate with. She volunteered to come in today so coworkers with spouses and children could spend time with their families. Her parents had decided to take a cruise to the Bahamas for the holidays, so she was going to be alone. They had asked her to accompany them, but Hermione declined the invitation. When she read the brochure and saw the pictures of smiling couples, she knew that this was a cruise for married couples. She felt that she would be in their way. Hermione sighed and picked up a snow globe sitting on her desk. She shook it and smiled wistfully as the "snow" fell on the figure of three children gathered around a snowman. She sometimes wished life was as simple as it was when she was a child, but one had to face reality and grow up.

She was shocked when she looked up and saw that it was almost 7:00 p.m. Hermione panicked because she was supposed to be at The Burrow for 6:30 p.m. The Burrow was the home of the Weasleys and Ron's mother Molly had invited Hermione to have dinner with them. As she straightened out her office and prepared to leave, something occurred to Hermione. Did she really want to be around a bunch of happy couples? Ron had married one of their classmates, Lavender Brown and they were expecting their first child any day now. Ginny, his sister was married to Harry Potter, and they had two small boys. Along with their older brothers and their wives and children, it was going to be a very family-oriented evening. She was going to be a third wheel and she didn't want to be the object of anyone's pity. No one ever said anything directly, but she could just see the pitying glances they shot her way when they thought she wasn't looking. They were probably wondering if she was ever going to find someone to settle down with or was going to be a bitter old maid. With a determined look on her face, she grabbed a pen and piece of parchment from her desk. She jotted this note:

Mrs. Weasley,

I've come down with a horrible cold and I can't seem to get rid of it. Please give everyone my regrets. Happy Christmas.


She felt a bit guilty about lying to Mrs. Weasley, but she truly didn't want to be in that environment. Hermione extinguished the lights in her office and locked the door. As she walked through the rest of the office, she couldn't get over how still and quiet it was. She was probably the last one to be leaving the Ministry that evening. She arrived at the elevators and took the floor to the Owlery. Once there, she placed the message on one of the owls and sent it off to The Burrow. She left the Owlery and stepped in to the first available elevator. She was thinking about what she was going to do for the evening when the elevator stopped. This startled out of her thoughts, but she realized perhaps there were other people who had worked late too. She stood back as the doors opened so the person or persons could step in. Her eyes narrowed when she saw who entered the elevator. Oh this is really the cherry on top of a totally fucked holiday evening, she thought as she watched Draco Malfoy step in.

Of all the people in the world, Draco Malfoy was the last person she wanted to be alone with in an elevator. He had been in her year at Hogwarts and had always managed to make her and her friends miserable. It was safe to say that they had never been friends. Malfoy also worked at the Ministry, but Hermione had always managed to avoid him. She supposed he had matured since the end of the war, but she had no interest in knowing any aspect of his life or if he was still an arrogant git.

She ignored him when he stepped into the elevator, by pretending to look for something in her handbag. To her delight, she found a peppermint candy cane. She remembered taking one from the reception desk earlier that day. Peppermint candy canes had always been her favorite Christmas candy. She smiled as she removed the wrapper and placed it in her mouth, sucking on it thoughtfully.

Draco couldn't believe it when he walked into the elevator and there was Hermione Granger. He had been pretty certain he was the only person left in the Ministry, but it didn't surprise him all that much to see Granger. She always was an overachiever at Hogwarts and he was pretty sure this carried over into her career. He never had any interaction with her since they worked in different departments and also he wasn't the nicest person when they were at Hogwarts. After the war, Draco had matured into a much more tolerant and reasonable wizard. He realized how wrong Voldemort and his twisted beliefs were. He glanced at her and noted that Hermione had grown into a beautiful witch. Her once bushy, unmanageable hair now fell in smooth waves down her back and her makeup was subtle but enhanced her features. She was dressed in a red sweater set with a black pencil skirt, and black heels. Draco had to admit that the outfit complemented her petite figure.

His breath caught as he watched her sucking on a candy cane. There was something so erotic about it and he couldn't stop staring. He could feel himself reddening when he had a sudden thought of her sucking on something else. Settle down mate, this isn't some random bird, this is Hermione Granger. What the hell are you thinking, Draco thought.

Hermione looked to the side and grimaced when she saw Draco Malfoy staring at her. She rolled her eyes and took the candy cane out of her mouth.

"Is there a problem Malfoy?" she asked snidely.

"Not at all Granger. You just looked like you were really enjoying that peppermint stick," Draco replied in his sarcastic drawl, but he was a little perturbed that she had caught him staring.

Hermione looked him over and was shocked when she saw how much taller he was since they were at Hogwarts. His shoulders were also much broader and the expensive dress robes he was wearing enhanced his fit physique. She always thought he was handsome, with his platinum hair and grey eyes, but his attitude was horrible and that was a turn-off for Hermione.

As she was checking him out, she was surprised when he began speaking again. "Look Granger, I know we've never been friends, but I'm willing to call a truce. How about it? It's Christmas."

Hermione raised her eyebrows and didn't say anything for a few moments. She was actually going to agree to this. "This is crazy, but you're right Malfoy. It's Christmas, so let's shake on it."

Draco chuckled as he and Hermione shook hands. He smiled down at her. "I thought I was the only one here. So I guess you got stuck working on Christmas Eve too."

"I did, but I was glad to do it. Most of my coworkers have families, so this allowed them to take the day off," Hermione said.

"It was the same situation in my department and I didn't mind coming in today. It's not like I had any plans," Draco answered.

"Aren't you going to be spending Christmas Eve with your family and fiancée?" Hermione asked. She had read a few months before that Draco was engaged to Astoria Greengrass, a pureblood witch that was a few years behind them at Hogwarts.

"No my parents are in Italy and I'm no longer engaged," Draco replied with a wry smile.

"I'm sorry Malfoy, I didn't realize," Hermione said.

"How would you have known? It happened a few weeks ago and we've been able to keep it quiet. There'll be an official announcement after the holidays are over," Draco said.

"Oh, well are you okay with that?" Hermione asked. She couldn't help it; even if it was Malfoy she was concerned if his feelings were hurt.

"I'm fine with it. Astoria is a nice girl, she's beautiful and everything, but we had nothing in common. It was a mutual agreement to break off the engagement. What about you? What are your plans this evening? I guess you'll be spending it with Potter and Weasley," Draco said.

"No, I won't be spending this evening with anyone. My parents are on their way to the Bahamas and my friends are off doing their own thing. I think I'm going to go home, open a bottle of wine, and settle in with a book," Hermione replied and was a little shocked that she admitted this to Malfoy. This was turning into a very strange evening.

"This might sound crazy Granger, but since we have no plans and nowhere to go, why don't we have dinner?" Draco asked, surprising himself that he would be so bold. She was probably going to turn him down flat.

"Not as crazy if I agreed to your invitation, but why not?" Hermione replied, not believing what she'd just agreed to, but she couldn't help being intrigued by this very different and charming Draco Malfoy.

They left the Ministry and went to Diagon Alley. Draco was able to get them a table at a small Italian bistro that had just opened. They shared a bottle of wine and the food was delicious. Hermione found that she was actually enjoying herself. The conversation flowed easily between them; they discussed everything from their jobs to books. She was surprised to find out that they had read many of the same books including many muggle titles. When the bill came, Hermione wanted to pay her share, but Draco insisted on picking up the tab.

"No, I invited you to dinner, it's my treat. You can get it next time," Draco chuckled. This was the first time in a long time he had truly enjoyed being in the company of a witch. Hermione was so easy to talk to and fun to be with. He didn't want this evening to end.

"Thank you," Hermione said softly and thought about what he said about her picking up the tab next time. Did that mean he wanted to see her again?

They left Diagon Alley and when they were on the street, Draco turned to her.

"Do you live far from here? It's late, I'll walk you home," Draco said.

"I live only a few blocks away. I'll be fine, I'm sure you're ready to go home. Thank you again for a lovely dinner," Hermione said.

"It's really no trouble. I want to make sure you get home safely," Draco replied.

"If you insist," Hermione said and they began walking. They kept up their conversation until they reached Hermione's apartment building.

"Well this is it for me. Thank you again for a lovely evening. I have to admit I never thought I'd be telling you that," Hermione said and smiled.

"You're quite welcome. Who would've known we had so much in common? How about I walk you to your door?" Draco asked. He was not ready for this evening to end.

Hermione thought about this for a few seconds, but then decided there was no harm if he walked her to her door. She nodded. "It's right this way," she replied as she began to climb to the second floor and Draco followed her.

When they arrived at her door, she stopped. "We're here," she said and put out her hand to shake Draco's. She was shocked at first, then pleasantly surprised when instead of shaking her hand, he pulled her to him and kissed her.

"I hope that was okay," Draco said when they came up for air.

Hermione nodded. "I liked it, but don't you think it's weird for us to be doing this?"

"No. You're a beautiful woman Hermione and I'm very attracted to you," Draco said and held his breath as he waited for her reaction.

Hermione leaned against the door of her apartment. She was blown away by this revelation. Maybe he was only saying that to get into her knickers, but at that moment she decided to throw caution to the winds. Even if this was just going to be a one-night stand, so what? She decided she didn't want to be alone tonight. "Do you want to come in?"

Draco nodded and followed her into the apartment. He couldn't believe this was happening.

They held nothing back once they were inside Hermione's apartment. Before she could put down her belongings, Draco had her against the wall in her living room, kissing her passionately. Hermione responded by kissing him back, running her hands through his soft hair, liking the way he groaned in her mouth. It wasn't long before their robes were shed and she was working on the buttons of his shirt while he quickly unbuttoned hers and lightly fondled her breasts. It had been some time since she'd been intimate with anyone or even been this attracted to a man. Draco aroused something in her that she didn't realize she was capable of.

As Draco kissed her and touched her surprisingly nicely-shaped breasts, it hit him that he had never felt anything like this with any other witch. He had plenty of experience with the opposite sex, but there was never anything to compare to this. He wondered if it was because of the intense dislike they always shared at Hogwarts. Perhaps there was always some sexual tension between them and they never explored it. Whatever this was, he intended on making the most of it.

Soon both of their shirts were off and Draco had removed Hermione's bra. His mouth moved from her lips, kissing her neck, and then moving to her breasts. He loved the way each one fit perfectly in each hand. He placed a soft kiss on one delicate light pink nipple and then lightly sucked it, while she gasped in pleasure. He did this for a few minutes, moving from one breast to the other. Hermione pulled his head back up and gave him a searing kiss, pressing herself against him as her legs wrapped around him. Draco closed his eyes and rubbed his erection into her, then opened them to stare into her eyes. He wanted her to know how much he wanted her.

"Do you want to take this to the bedroom?" Hermione asked softly.

"Yes," Draco answered huskily as she unwrapped her legs from around him and they moved from the wall. She took his hand and led him to her bedroom. Once there, they wasted no time in shedding the rest of their clothes, save their underwear. They began kissing again and Hermione guided him to the bed as she silently chanted a contraception charm. She lay back against it and Draco hovered over her. He moved down to her breasts again. One hand trailed down to the waistband of her panties. He reached inside and his cock twitched when he felt how aroused she was. He inserted one long finger inside of her and gently pushed up as his mouth continued to work on her breasts.

Hermione's hips shot up at this contact and she moved against him. Merlin she's so ready for me, Draco thought. He lifted his head from her breasts and removed his hand from her. She gave a small sound of protest, but he only shook his head. He moved his hands down to her hips and gently removed her panties, a sharp intake of breath emitting from him as she lifted her hips to make it easier for him to slide them off. Her small hands moved to the waistband of his boxers and pulled them down. Her eyes widened when she saw his impressive girth and length. She was not a virgin, but she had only been with two men, Ron and a muggle boyfriend a few years before. Neither one came close to Draco.

Draco moved between her legs and positioned himself at her entrance. He kissed her as he slowly entered her. Hermione let out a gasp as she adjusted to his huge cock. Draco couldn't believe how tight she was and he knew he was going to have to pace himself or he would be reaching his climax in a few minutes. He moved slowly and kissed her tenderly. This was better than he would've ever imagined.

As she took him in, Hermione relaxed and wrapped her legs around his waist, and started to move with him. This feels so right, she thought. She bit her lip when she felt the familiar stirring start in the pit of her stomach, then the exquisite tingles of pleasure moved all the way down to her toes and they curled when she came. Draco's thrusts became more urgent when he felt her walls tighten around him as she cried out in ecstasy. When he couldn't hold back any longer, he shot his seed into her. The bursts were so intense; she could feel it inside of her.

He stayed inside of her for a few minutes, savoring the moment. He finally slid out and lay beside her, pulling her against him so that she was resting on his chest. When he caught his breath, he began to speak.

"I don't know about you, but that was incredible," Draco said as he looked down at her and pushed her hair away from her face. She had no idea of how beautiful she looked as she looked up at him and smiled.

"I must say I have to agree Malfoy," Hermione replied.

"I think you can call me Draco," Draco said softly and chuckled. Hermione giggled and moved up to kiss him. This spurred another round of lovemaking, but this time they moved slowly and took more time to explore each other's bodies. After their passion had been sated, they fell asleep.

The next morning when Hermione woke up, Draco's body was pressed against her back and one arm was wrapped around her waist. She repositioned herself so that she was face to face with him. She loved the way he looked when he was sleeping; his handsome face looked so peaceful. She tenderly caressed his cheek and smiled when she saw one eye open.

"Good morning Hermione. Happy Christmas," Draco whispered as he pulled her against him.

"Good morning Draco. Happy Christmas," Hermione whispered back and was silenced when he began to kiss her again. It wasn't long before they making love again and Hermione wondered what it would be like to wake up to this every morning. This was turning out to be the best Christmas ever.

She and Draco were so caught up that they never heard her floo being activated. Ginny Weasley Potter and her mother Molly stepped out of it. Molly was carrying a small cauldron filled with steaming chicken soup. It was her cure-all for any ailment, especially bad colds.

"Ginny dear, why don't you go check on Hermione and I'll bring this to the kitchen," Molly said.

"Okay mum," Ginny answered as she began to walk towards Hermione's bedroom. When she arrived at the door, she could hear a soft moan. Hermione must really be under the weather, Ginny thought and was about to walk into the bedroom to see about her friend. She stopped in her tracks when she came to the entrance. There was Hermione in the throes of passion with a guy! As the shock of seeing this wore off, Ginny took in the pale hair and realized Hermione was in bed with none other than Draco Malfoy! She quickly moved away from the door and closed it gently. They were so caught up in each other that they never noticed. She was totally not expecting to walk in on something like that. Ginny didn't even know Hermione was seeing someone, much less Malfoy. She couldn't wait to find out the story behind this.

Ginny met her mother in the kitchen. Molly smiled when she saw her.

"How is Hermione dear? Should I prepare a tray for her?" Molly asked.

"She's still sleeping. Why don't we come back later?" Ginny suggested.

"Alright, but I feel so bad for her. Poor dear, being sick and spending the holidays alone," Molly fretted.

"I know, why don't we go home and let her rest," Ginny replied and got her mother out of the apartment before Molly decided she wanted to check on Hermione.

When Draco and Hermione were done, Hermione got up to use the bathroom. She frowned when she reached her bedroom door because she could've sworn that she had left it open the night before. As she walked into the hall, she thought she smelled the scent of the citrus-based perfume Ginny used. She shook her head; she was imagining things. When she was done in the bathroom, she walked into the kitchen for a drink of water. When she saw the cauldron of soup on her stove, she froze! She recognized Molly Weasley's cauldron. Oh Merlin, were they still here? Hermione crept into her living room and gave a sigh of relief when no one was there.

As she went back to her bedroom, she counted her blessings that Ginny or her mother hadn't come to check on her in her bedroom. It then hit Hermione that she had smelled Ginny's perfume in the hall. It must've been Ginny who shut the door! She smiled when she realized she would have some explaining to do, but didn't worry about it as she climbed back into bed with Draco Malfoy.

Happy Holidays, just a little one shot to celebrate the season!