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First Light
Topic Started: 5 Aug 2009, 12:21 AM (436 Views)
Draco Malfoy
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This entire place was a joke. The Dark Lord was getting closer and closer to the Minister every day, as much as the Minister refused to admit to it in the Daily Prophet, and here he was playing the good student and Head Boy to boot. The funny thing was his father was actually proud of him for managing to secure that role, even though Draco was fairly certain that Dumbledore only gave it to him to show the rest of the wizarding community that he was trustworthy. It was enough to make him sick. Or maybe it was a twisted sort of punishment, since now he had to do extra work minding the measly first years and all.

The feast had long since ended, everyone else had gone to bed, and yet Draco had spent the night here in the entryway, simply staring out the windows. Part of him had hoped that he would have gotten caught, but of the few professors that did pass, none of them actually spoke with him. Maybe he didn’t get in trouble because he was head boy now, and he had the authority to wander around at night, but he severely doubted it. He wondered what Dumbledore had told them all, but he guessed that Snape was the only one who really knew that had actually happened on the tower that night, and Draco was just fine with that. He had no intention of telling anyone.

It wasn’t until the sky began lightening to a shade of pink that he realized that he’d been there all night, standing by the doors and staring out the window. What had once been a somewhat of a second home to him, not felt more like a prison. Even on the train he had simply been going through the motions; sitting in the same car as the a few other seventh year Slytherins, smiling at their jokes, even telling one or two of his own. But he felt hollow inside; detached from a world that he turned his back on. It seemed like even between his own house there was a rift growing between those from family’s of Death Eaters and, like him, those who only wanted to survive. He knew he was a traitor, in a way, allowing that muggle lover Dumbledore to offer his family protection, but he could care less. If that was what it took to keep his family together, then so be it. At least he wasn’t stupid enough to think that the Dark Lord could protect them all; muggles and mud bloods weren't the only people who were dying.
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Hermione Granger
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Hermione was doing her routine check up on the house elves in the kitchen this morning. Once a month, she got up bright and early to check up on them to make sure that they were okay. It was the beginning of the year, so this was the one that Hermione somewhat dreaded. She'd spent the entire summer away from them, after all. S.P.E.W.'s popularity... if it had any to begin with... had dwindled greatly over the years, but nevertheless, Hermione stood strong. As she stepped out of the whole with the fruit basket and closed it shut, she figured she'd walk towards the entry hall and enjoy it's quietness before going back to sleep for a few.

As she headed towards the entry hall, she pulled her uniform robe over her pajamas and had her wand out. While there were no dangers in the school with Dumbledore around, she couldn't ever tell when Peeves would decide to unleash a reign of terror. Usually, he stuck to the new kids, but she wasn't about to take her chances. Hogwarts had become such a safe haven and even her home over the last seven years and she didn't want to leave it now. There was so much history and knowlege in the school that she wanted to absorb it before leaving. As she neared the entrance of the school, she noticed a figure at a nearby window. Holding her wand out, she was just about to unleash a protective charm when she realized that white hair from anywhere.

It was Malfoy. What was he doing up so late... or early depending on how one would look at it. Keeping her wand out, and her distance, she called out to him. It wasn't that she didn't trust him, but if out of surprise he decided to attack, she had distance to dodge and repel. Hermione wanted to get on a good side of Draco now. Naturally, she'd heard about what happened last year from Harry, but she didn't want to show too much simpathy because Malfoy had been their rival for years. That and being a "mud blood" in his eyes meant that it would be difficult to be friendly.

"Draco? What are you doing out so early?"
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Draco Malfoy
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“Well, look who they let out of the library.” Draco spoke even before turning around. He didn’t have to see her to know who it was; he would recognize that voice anywhere, having heard it interrupt half of his classes to answer some question or other for the past six years. Now he had to put up with her as Head Girl as well. His desire to be here all year was dropping fast, not that it was very high to begin with. The castle and the grounds were all right, but it was the people he didn’t want to put up with. He could barely even stand to be around Snape anymore, not after all the arguments they had the previous year. The professor had tried of course, though Draco guessed that it was only on Dumbledore’s orders that they act all chummy again.

“Anyway, what’s it to you what I’m doing, Granger? I wasn’t aware that I had to report my every move to you.” He finally turned away from the windows as streaks of red shot through the sky. Really, what was he supposed to say to her? He disliked her almost as much as he disliked Potter, maybe even more as somewhere deep down he considered it a personal insult that the muggle born was the best witch of their year. And speaking of Potter, he wondered if the ‘Chosen One’ had told her the truth of what really happened the previous year, not the bit of lies that the Prophet eventually reported. Probably he had, which almost made his disgust deepen.

At the sight of her outstretched arm, and the thin, wooden wand clasped in her hand, one eyebrow cocked upwards in a questioning expression. At the same time he couldn’t help the smirk that crossed his lips at the irony of the situation. Here he was, at the mercy of little miss perfect, and yet under Dumbledore’s protection. He didn’t even bother to lift a hand towards his own wand, guessing that she wouldn’t have the nerve to attack him if unprovoked, and he wasn’t stupid enough to provoke her, at least not extensively.

“What are you going to do, curse me simply for being out of bed afterhours? Right here in the middle of the entrance hall? If that is how things work around here now, then I may as well do the same to you. What are you doing out so early?” He threw her question back at her, even if he didn’t expect an answer. He wasn’t even sure he wanted to hear it if she did give it to him.
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Hermione Granger
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Listening to Malfoy's banter, Hermione put her wand into her left hand sleeve into a slit that she sewed into her robe for quick access incase of a duel. Malfoy was quite a character. As much as she detested him, she felt sorry for the bloke. Then again she did remember the torture that she went through for the was several years and what he always called her. In their third year, Hermione remember raring back and punching him in the face. She couldn't deny that the guy deserved it, even if it was out of her character. "It is to me what you are doing because I still don't trust you, Malfoy." After six years, Malfoy was no longer considered 'bad' to the school. Hermione respected Dumbledore and his choices, but she wasn't sure what he up to making Malfoy the Head Boy. Perhaps it was to further press the issue that Malfoy did no wrong.

As Hermione approached Draco, she did her best to analyze him. Was it foolish for her to believe that Draco was genuinely a good guy who was pressured into being the way that he was? Now wasn't the time or place to go giving him the benefit of the doubt. The question now was, why was Draco out in the Entrance Hall at the wee hours of the morning. "For your information, I was checking up on the house elves. I haven't been here to make sure they were okay. Why would you care? They are just slave creatures to you." Hermione quickly got defensive over the House Elves. She remembered how Dobby was treated when he was under the orders of the Malfoys. She felt really bad for the poor elf. However, now he was happy at Hogwarts and Hermione wasn't going to have it any other way. They deserved to be treated fairly.

Pushing her grudge aside, Hermione stepped hear him, giving a good arms length between the two, but staring out the window. She had a swallow her pride to speak with him, but she was going to do it it cautiously. Placing her hands underneath the opposite sleeves, mainly to grab ahold of her wand, she stood next to the pureblood zealot who caused her so much grief over the years. It was time to come clean. "Draco... Harry told me everything. I'm not saying this is a truce, but I'll help protect you, even to your detest. It's not pity; it's my orders." Hermione never stopped looking out the window as she spoke. Her lips were pressed. Hermione didn't like to admit her pity for Draco, but all the while, she felt sorry for him. The Order wanted to make sure that Draco was in safe hands, but they were all meant to keep an eye on him incase he tried anything funny. He was Malfoy and that name carried a lot of weight with the Order. "So, I call a truce until this is over with. Your thoughts?"
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Draco Malfoy
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He rolled his eyes at her explanation as to why she should care about what he was up to. Did she really think that he would care whether she trusted him or not? He would have thought it obvious that he most certainly didn’t trust her, and he didn’t expect any different from her. Too much had happened during their years at school together, and even if she were a pure-blood he doubted that he would feel any differently towards her. But as it stood, she wasn’t, and he could care less. “I’m in the entrance hall of the castle; what trouble could I possibly cause?” He did his best imitation of what he thought would be an innocent expression. Last year the biggest threat to the school had come from within the castle; the vanishing cabinet in the Room of Requirement. And it was all because he had been smart enough, and worked hard enough, to fix the broken cupboard and bring the Death Eaters into the school. Even though the cabinet was destroyed afterwards, he was still proud that all of his hard work had paid off.

A look of disgust crossed his face at her mention of the house elves. Really they tended to do just fine when left to their own devises, didn’t they? “God, I should have guessed it was something ridiculous like that. Saint Hermione; always looking out for the little people, if you could call them ‘people.’” As she stepped closer to him, he had the sudden urge to take a step back, away from her. She was the one who, only moments ago, was brandishing a wand at him, and though he absolutely hated to admit it, she would probably win in a duel between them. He had picked up a few new tricks from his aunt Bella though, during the summer between her escape and his sixth year, and he wouldn’t mind trying a few of them out on her. But he wasn’t back at this place to stir up any more trouble; Draco was supposed to be acting the ‘Golden Boy’ now. Dumbledore had asked him to be on his best behavior this year, and because he wouldn’t put it past the old wizard to go back on his promise of protection, he had no intention of breaking his part of the deal, at least not for her.

Her first mistake, well aside from stopping for this pleasant conversation in the first place, was mentioning that Harry had told her everything, and probably Ron too. Draco didn’t want to hear it, and he turned his back on her, looking out the window once more. He wasn’t exactly proud that he had caved into the treats of the Dark Lord, but what other choice had he last year? No one defied the Dark Lord. Her second mistake was offering her help; like he wanted the help of the likes of her. It was insulting; that a pureblood such as himself had to be offered protection from someone who didn’t even have one wizarding parent. He was regretting his decision already, to accept the offer of the Order. “My thoughts? No thanks. I don’t need you’re protection, orders or not.” He figured that he would be just fine at the school without her help, and he didn’t need her popping up everywhere he went simply because she was following some order.
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Hermione Granger
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Hermione turned to the side to face Draco. She couldn't believe how insensitive he could be. That was him though; no matter how badly she hoped for something good out of him, she had to face it; he was never going to be nice. "Those house elves are categorized by the ministry as Magical Creatures, for you information." Crossing her arms, she leaned her hip on the side of the wall with the window, giving Draco a look as though she was trying to analyze him. Truth be told, she pitied him. However, no matter how badly she wished he'd cool off, she knew it would never happen. Hermione couldn't help but feel disappointment in him. Then again, that was probably the theme for him nowadays. That pity she felt was slowly starting to diminish.

She finally responded to his response about the Entrance Hall, "Well, contrary to popular belief, Draco, those doors are just as dangerous as any fireplace, cabinet, chamber in this whole school. And I'm not saying I don't trust you. It just struck me odd that you would happen to be up at this hour." Hermione, for the first time, felt her hand twitch and the urge to brandish her wand at Draco fill her body. It took everything in her not to let it happen. She closed her eyes for a moment and took a deep breath and let the urge subside and calm. Hermione was going to have a decent conversation with Draco, even if it killed her. This was something that was long overdue, but part of her said that this would end just as it had back in their third year.

"You need to talk to me about this. I'm not here to protect you. I'm here because I care enough about you and your well being to stand before you and say that I'm here to help. Dumbledore saw something in you that night, Draco. Why else would you be here now? You've seen what Voldemort can do and he just wants to help." Hermione turned and looked out at the redden sky began to glow more with the dawn. It was almost a new day and the students would need to be getting up soon. Fortunately for her, she'd had plenty of sleep the night before so this early rise wasn't going to kill her for the rest of the day. "Why are you so reluctant about me wanting to help you? Is it the whole mudblood thing? I think I've proven myself quite well over the past six years, haven't I? Anyway, I hear that there is going to be a special trip to Hogsmeade coming up. You should think about going." Then again, if he went, Hermione was sure that someone may be playing bodyguard to make sure he doesn't leave.
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Draco Malfoy
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His grey eyes flickered to the side as she turned to face him, but he wasn’t going to return the gesture. Draco continued to stare out of the window, hands clasped behind his back. Really, he couldn’t believe he was actually having a conversation with her; probably the longest they had have spoken, and full sentences too. Whatever had changed in her to get her to talk to him like this, he hoped that it would change back soon. A conversation about house elves was, in his opinion, fairly low. “As they should be; categorized as the filthy, little creatures they are. Emphasis on creatures.” Just because they were recognized as magical creatures didn’t mean that were on equal footing with wizards, or even close to it.

He couldn’t help the way his eyes rolled at her remark about the front doors being dangerous. Was that a dig at his use of the vanishing cabinet the previous year? Frankly he was still quite proud of his magical accomplishment in fixing the damned thing. “Oh, well let me make myself clear then. I do not trust you.” The remark was basically his way of saying that it was none of her business why he was up and about so early in the morning. He wasn’t going to tell her about his growing insomnia or ever present stress.

Draco turned his body sideways to face her, his right hand slipping into his pocket. His left arm twitched slightly from the ever present tingle from the mark branded into his skin, but he masked the motion by placing his hand on the side of the wall in a casual manner. His voice was kept low but cold, and his eyes narrowed into a glare as he looked directly at her now for the first time since she’d arrived in the entrance hall. “I don’t need to talk to you about anything, no matter how much you might want to. No matter what the ‘Chosen One’ told you, you don’t understand a thing, and I’m not going to be enlightening you anytime soon. Why I came back to school is my business, and I’d appreciate if you’d keep your bushy head out of it.” Draco didn’t even dignify her question about his reluctance with an answer; he thought it would have been obvious. Of course it was partially because she was muggle born, but it was mainly because she was her. He had never gotten along with her or the rest of Dumbledore’s Dream Team, and he didn’t plan on starting now.

Her comment on the upcoming Hogsmeade trip was news to him, and the abrupt change in topic caught him slightly off guard. “Was that an invitation?” An evil grin that was close to a sneer crossed his face as the hand that had been in his pocket very quickly rose up, slowing just enough to brush a strand of hair away from her face. That action was followed by a quick step back, as he didn’t really want a repeat of the punch he’d received four years ago. The moment he was out of reach his face returned to his typical scowl, and once again he turned to face the window and the sunrise. Both of his hands slipped into the pockets of his tailored black pants; he didn’t plan on actually wearing the school robes at all this year.
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