Disclaimer: I own nothing. All characters are property of J.K. Rowling.
Author's Note: I've been writing BtVS fiction lately and thought it was time to give something else a try. So here's my first HP fic with my two favorite characters. Warning…ANGST…and character death.
Don't you wonder sometimes what might have been if you'd just done one thing different in your life. Sometimes I think that if I'd made one choice differently then I wouldn't be where I am now. I have everything that a wizard or a muggle could wish for. I'm rich. I have power. I'm now the head of one of the most powerful wizarding families in the world. And none of it matters to me. I'm completely alone.
Oh, don't get me wrong. It all used to matter. I centered my life around inconsequential things. I was materialistic, snobbish…a rude prat most of the time. I resented Harry Potter for everything that he had. His parents, even though they're dead, loved him enough to die for him. My parents could have cared less about me. Everything was about maintaining the Malfoy image. I envied Harry Potter. He was the boy who lived. The one who got all the attention and was adored by the only girl I ever loved.
I didn't know I loved her at the time. I didn't understand the feelings that filled me when I saw her smile or laugh. I couldn't understand why I wanted to hold her. So I did my best to torment her. She was a Weasley. I wasn't supposed to care about her, with her fiery hair and matching temper, or those big brown eyes that were so innocent and trusting. I never meant to go as far as I did. I never meant to hurt her so badly. I can still see the tears in her eyes as she curled away from me.
I raped Ginny Weasley. I was so angry at her for making me feel. I was angry that she adored Potter but never looked twice at me. I left her there, curled in a ball in the Astronomy tower. I heard later that Longbottom and Granger found her there. I waited, expecting to be attacked by her brothers and Potter. I waited for the summons to Dumbledore's office. It never came.
I watched her after that. Everything that once made me care about her was gone. Her hair grew dull and lifeless. When people talked to her you could see she wasn't really listening. Her eyes were dead. I was responsible for that.
To say anyone was surprised when she took her life would be a lie. She had died the night I raped her. It was just a matter of time before she made it official. I think I was the only one who was shocked. I didn't let it show. Malfoys' never showed weakness. Granger was the first to approach me after Ginny's death. The Weasleys were grieving and didn't know about the letter that Ginny had left behind. When she walked up to me I was sure she knew what I had done.
Instead she told me how Ginny had planned on asking me to the Yule Ball before everything…. Apparently, despite all my rude and scathing comments, the youngest Weasley once told her that she thought she saw something good in me. As Granger talked I was dying inside. When she handed me an envelope with my name on it I knew who had written it. I tried to stay calm but I lost control that night. I still can't believe I cried in front of Hermione Granger.
I confessed everything to her while sitting there in the same tower where I destroyed Ginny. She was horrified and I know that she was afraid. It was pouring off her in waves it was so thick. But she listened. She listened as I let out everything that had been pent up inside me for so long. When I was done, she just stood and said that she wasn't going to tell anyone. There was no need. My conscience was punishing me worse than any prison could.
I still have the letter. I read it the second Granger left the tower. It was only suiting that I read her final words in the place where she died. She wrote how she thought I was different than I appeared to be. She wrote about the first time she really saw me and what made her decide to ask me to the Yule Ball. She wrote about how she convinced her brothers to let her ask. For me though, the breaking point came when I read the small cursive handwriting that said, "I thought I saw something good in you once. I was very wrong". That night I joined her in death. Maybe not physically, but emotionally.
Potter approached me once, a few weeks later. He was actually concerned about me. I'd stopped the snarky comments and mean tricks. No one had endured anything from me since Ginny's death. I think he knew what I'd done. If she would have told anyone it would have been him. I just brushed him off, content to endure the solitude I now felt.
So here I sit behind this big mahogany desk, in this black leather chair, and I wonder how I could have done what I did. People say that regrets are a waste of time and maybe they are. But I live for them. I live to remember her smiling face and her fiery hair. I live for the sound of her laughter echoing through my mind. Her cries for me to stop and the tears in her eyes haunt me. They are my punishment. I can never escape them. I never want to.