A/N: This is a roleplaying session I had with my friend Madelyn (I'm Hermione, Madelyn is Harry). It turned out unbearably cute, so I just had to post it. Make us both happy and review.

HermioneShe was walking back from one of the greenhouses, having collected a plant for an important Potions project, when she spotted Harry, just lying on the grass, quite obviously lost in thought, as he always seemed to be lately. On top of that, he had been distant and even a little rude to her and Ron. Now would be a good time to confront him, when nobody else was around.

"Harry," she began, "I need to talk to you."

HarryHarry sighed and rolled onto his elbows, trying to pull his mind back into the here and now, "Yes Hermione?" It always seemed to end up like this, he would have maybe fifteen or twenty minutes to himself, and then someone would find him. Even the Forbidden Forest wasn't a safe retreat, given Hagrid's unerring ability to find Harry the moment his big toe touched the forest floor. Maybe this wouldn't take very long and he could get back to his solitude. Who was he kidding? This was Hermione, and if there was one thing she wasn't known for, it was being brief and to the point.

HermioneShe looked at Harry for a moment, deciding beating around the bush would only be harder in this case, and dove right into it. "What's going on with you, Harry? You'll hardly talk to Ron and me, and when you do, it's like you don't even want to be around us. If there's something wrong, you should tell us, you know. You can tell us anything; it's not like we'll ever desert you. We're your friends, Harry, and we could help you, if you'd just let us once in awhile!" She stopped, fuming. If she said anything more, she might regret it.

HarryHe looked at Hermione and shook his head. Well, it wasn't as though he hadn't seen this coming a mile away, "I just need some time to myself, that's all. It's nothing against you or Ron- or anyone else for that matter. I just want to have a break, and this is the only way I can get one." It was true. Every time he started to hang around Ron or Hermione again, suddenly there would be these well-placed clues pointing to some problem arising. Naturally, the three of them would be expected to figure everything out and save the day on their own. Not this year. This year someone else could play hero, someone that didn't wake up in a cold sweat with images of_ well, with nightmares every bloody night.

HermioneTime to himself? That was all he had to say? Hermione crossed her arms, glaring involuntarily. "I can understand wanting time to yourself. Everybody does sometime. But something's wrong when you never want to be around anybody! God, Harry, can't you see that Ron and I are half out of our minds, worrying about you? We can tell there's something wrong, Harry. What is it? It can't be anything so bad that Ron and I won't be able to take it." Hermione sat down in the grass next to Harry, carefully setting down her plant and bag. "Tell me what's wrong, for Merlin's sake," she demanded.

HarryHarry rolled onto his back once more, watching storm clouds slowly rolling in. There's irony for you. For a moment, his mind began to slip back into the internal dialogue that seemed to mark most moments these days; replaying events, questioning decisions, looking at situations from different angles. It wasn't surprising, really- he had spent years without people to actually converse with, left only with his own thoughts. Was it so shocking that now such quiet times had become a comfort? He was starting to feel a certain appreciation to Viktor's anti-social ways. Letting his mind follow that path, he suddenly spoke, "What ever happened to you and Viktor? One minute he was fawning over you, and you were even wearing make-up for him, and the next both of you just parted ways and you were kissing me on the cheek?" It wasn't the first time he had asked this particular question, but it was the first time he actually voiced it to Hermione.

HermioneShe stared at Harry, unblinking. Perhaps he had finally lost it? It seemed the only likely answer, considering his answer to, "What the hell is wrong with you?" was her love life. She would humour him, however, and see where he was going with this. "Viktor was always more like a friend to me. My feelings toward him just weren't romantic. Anyway, I -- well, there were just too many complications. And why shouldn't I kiss you on the cheek, Harry? We're friends." Friends, Hermione mentally repeated. Always friends, and nothing more. Never 'I', always 'Ron and I.' Harry didn't need another burden, so she wouldn't put one on his shoulders. Hermione would simply never tell him how she felt about him.

HarryHarry lips upturned into a grin, "Really? Do me a favor Hermione_" he leaned in close and whispered in her ear, "_never, ever tell Ron that friends kiss each other on the cheek. Could you do that for me? I mean, I like the guy, but I'd rather not contemplate his lips on me." Giving in to a sudden random thought, he kissed her on the cheek before lying back down on the grass. It just seemed the thing to do at that moment, and he had enough things to over-analyze without adding this to the list.

HermioneDear Lord, he was off his rocker. And he had kissed her on the cheek. He just had to do that, didn't he, making her insides twist with excitement and feelings constantly pushed back. It was an ironic form of torture. "Right..." Hermione replied, rather tonelessly, since she couldn't seem to come up with appropriate words or a nice comeback at the moment.

HarryHarry smirked as he looked up at the clouds gathering in the sky above, "I'll be damned, Hermione Granger can be made speechless. Color me surprised. Was it the kiss on the cheek or the thought of Ron's lips on me that did it?" He wasn't sure why he was being so playful, but it simply seemed to be where his mind was wandering. He had been serious for so long, it was nice just to let words roll off of his tongue and catch the air. There was a cloud in the sky that looked like Hermione's profile, complete with long hair blowing in an unseen breeze. Odd how clouds had a habit of conjuring things on your mind. His hand reached up and idly traced over the hazy grey form and features.

HermioneHermione blushed slightly at Harry's words, unsure of how to respond. She obviously couldn't tell him the truth. He didn't need to know, and he obviously wasn't in the mood for serious revelations. Her thoughts were interrupted as she watched Harry reach up with his hand, seemingly tracing a cloud. Raising an eyebrow, she decided to ignore his comments, and asked, "What does it look like?" She wondered if he would understand the question, if he had looked up at the sky and picked out shapes, creating fantasies in the clouds to pass the time, as she had as a child. Perhaps he was lost in a world of figures that floated with the wind at this very moment, escaping reality for awhile. Maybe he wasn't so crazy, after all.

HarryHarry answered without stopping the slow tracing motions, "It's really lovely, looks like your profile, and your hair's blowing in the breeze_ and Malfoy just flew up your nose. He must be training on his broom again." For a moment his hand stopped, his head cocked to the side, and then a fit of laughter overtook him as the image of Malfoy flying up Hermione's nose was now ingrained in his memory for all time.

HermioneShe couldn't help but laugh with him, not because she found the mental image of Malfoy flying up her nose amusing, but because when Harry laughed, it was contagious. A moment later, she was on her back on the grass next to him, clutching her stomach as her laughter finally died down. When she was finally calm enough to speak, she said, "Honestly, Harry, you're a little strange sometimes."

HarryHarry caught his breath and looked over at Hermione. Her hair was splayed across the grass, her skin flushed with laughter. He had to stop for a moment and catch his breath again, "You're lovely_" He couldn't think of anything else to say, so he simply enjoyed watching her features shift and more color come to her cheeks. After a moment, Harry laid his head back down on the grass, enjoying this moment of happiness and beauty. He reached out and clasped his hand gently over hers, enjoying the feeling of soft skin beneath his callused fingers. "Shame we can't stay like this forever, just living in this one moment_" his thoughts trailed off again, but her touch kept him grounded.

HermioneShe froze, the words, "You're lovely" echoing through her head. Before she could recover, his hand was over hers, and her heart was beginning to pound loudly and quickly in her chest. She wanted to ask him what he was doing, what he meant by his words, but then, he was saying what a shame it was that they couldn't stay like this forever. She agreed fully, not wanting to ruin or end the moment, either. It would be better not to complicate things, just to let everything be as it was. So, she remained silent, deciding that if he wanted to add anything, he would.

Harry Her hand felt very comforting in his, and he hoped she wouldn't pull away anytime soon. He just wanted to be. Not be something in particular, but to live, and be, and experience the little things most people overlooked- and find a balance in his life. Considering this he offered, "I think I'd make a fairly good Buddhist." The idea of him being a Buddhist wizard and her being a Catholic witch struck him as amusing. Not that she seemed a practicing Catholic. Actually, for all he knew, she was pouring over theological tomes every summer. "Hermione? Are you still a practicing Catholic? If it's too personal, you don't have to answer," he knew it was an odd question, but after the previous conversation, he doubted the sudden topic shift would faze her.

HermioneIt didn't much surprise her when Harry brought up religion, and by now, she didn't mind any subject he came up with. Any anger she felt toward him had disappeared the moment he kissed her on the cheek. Now, she was merely enjoying the company, letting the conversation flow wherever he wanted it to go.

"No, I'm not a practicing Catholic," Hermione replied. "How could I be, when they consider witchcraft to be a sin?"

HarryHarry looked over at her, "Technically, it's praying to demons and worshiping of deities other than God that's against the rules. Witchcraft, the sort we learn here, isn't really considered against the rules- since we aren't petitioning any Lords of Hell for the powers or potions we use. But I guess that's probably beside the point, you don't seem very big on Catholicism in general." He looked upward once more, seeing Malfoy streak through the sky, high above them. Wondering if he was being watched, a mischievous expression crossed Harry's face as he casually gave the Slytherin a rather interesting 'You're number one!' sign with his hand. Seeing Malfoy's broom come to a halt and Draco shaking his fist, he casually commented, "I guess he was watching." Harry cheerfully waved at his rival, a smile spreading across his face.

Hermione"Harry!" she exclaimed, awestruck at Harry. He was full of surprises today; she didn't know why anything he did shocked her anymore. She couldn't scold him and tell him he was being crude, though. Malfoy deserved to get a look at Harry's more vulgar side. Grinning, she continued, "You're awfully cheerful, you know that? It's good to see you like this."

Harry"Uh oh," Harry saw Draco barreling toward them, and realized he had to find some way to shock Draco off of his broom. He quickly rolled over and kissed Hermione on the lips, knowing it was probably one of the last things Malfoy would ever expect to see. Hearing a collision in the distance, Harry was grateful his idea worked. He was rather enjoying the kiss, but realized they should probably head elsewhere before Malfoy got up off of the ground. Harry reluctantly pulled away, "We should go somewhere else, maybe go deliver that plant wherever it's supposed to go?" he added, pointing to the bit of foliage she had carried from the greenhouse.

HermioneHer eyes opened wide as Harry kissed her. It was official. She could not take another surprise today, even if it was as good as the one she just received. Of course, she realized he was just doing it because of Malfoy, but that didn't really matter. In the back of her mind, she was convinced that he had enjoyed kissing her as much as she enjoyed being kissed. When he suggested they go somewhere else, she merely nodded dumbly, mouth hanging open slightly. He had her speechless again.

HarryHarry quickly took the plant in one hand and Hermione in the other, running back into the school- and away from one very irate, bruised, and vengeance-seeking Slytherin. Stopping only when they had come to an abandoned room that he had known about since first year, he caught his breath and spoke, "That_ was incredible." He gently placed the plant on the stone floor and sat down a few feet away from it. Brushing off the spot next to him, he motioned and looked to Hermione, "Pull up a stone; I think we'll be here for a little while."

HermioneBefore she could quite comprehend anything, she was running off with Harry, Malfoy chasing after them. She struggled to keep up, and was very relieved when they ended up in an unused room. Panting, she did as Harry suggested and sat down next to him. "What, exactly, was incredible?" Hermione asked, curious. She didn't see how tricking Malfoy could be considered incredible, since the cramp in her side insisted that it was a very stupid thing to do.

HarryHarry looked to her as though she had taken a serious blow to the head, "You didn't miss the kiss, did you? I could do it over if you did- it wouldn't be any trouble." He couldn't help but smile deeply enough to cause his dimples to become obvious. She looked lovely when disheveled, out of breath, and flushed with color. It leant a certain glow to her features that usually wasn't there until late in the evening, when the firelight danced across the walls and her brows were knit in concentration.

HermioneShe looked away, speechless yet again. How did he do it? And how could she answer that? Of course she meant the kiss, and she most certainly did want him to do it over. Hermione didn't know whether he was teasing her or not, and was completely lost for an answer.

"If you want to," she finally answered, deciding he could interpret that any way he wished.

HarryHarry smiled and leaned forward, kissing her lips once more. He wasn't really experienced, but it felt wonderful. He hoped she was enjoying it as much as he was. Harry knew it wasn't the best kiss, but he really put his emotions into it, and figured that counted for a lot more than technique. After a few minutes, his need for oxygen and pounding heart finally convinced him to move away, "Did you catch it that time? Or should I resign myself to doing this over and over until we get it right?" His smile returned as he twirled a strand of her hair around his finger, "You really are lovely..."

HermioneShe finally felt sure of Harry the moment his lips touched hers for the second time. Warm spread throughout her body, relief lightening her heart. She didn't have to hide a thing anymore; her feelings wouldn't be a burden to him. It was a beautiful kiss, if not a little sloppy, and she decided she wouldn't want it any other way.

She smiled when he pulled away. "I caught it that time," she said, voice shaking just a little with emotion, "but do it over and over anyway."