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A Brief Shining Moment - Chapter Thirteen
by calmacil_20 (calmacil_20)
at July 25th, 2007 (08:18 am)
excited

i'm : my hatch
i'm feeling : excited
i'm listening to: On Your Side - Ryan Adams

Title: A Brief Shining Moment
Author:  calmacil_20
Spoiler/Warnings: An AU story that for the most part ignores DH.
Summary:  A story that ehcoes through the ages is told again...A retelling of the Arthurian legends with our favourite Hogwarts students as the focus. Takes place after the seventh year at Hogwarts is over, and Harry and his friends thought that they finally had some respite. Harry and Hermione are together at last, and live with most of the Order members in small, secluded house, but there is a shadowy remnant of Voldemort's supporters - united under a new leader - who still want to plunge the world into darkness. 
Genre: Angst/Adventure/Romance
Chapter: Thirteen - Betrayals Come in Threes
Chapter Summary: The mounting tension between Draco and Hermione comes to a head, and the destruction of the DA from within begins...
Rating: PG-13
Author's Note: Finishing up Deathly Hollows made me really want to wrap my little saga up as well, so I've been working hard to tie things up for those of you who have been kind enough to stick with it. This chapter may be hard for some to stomach, but you'll have to take my assurance that things will get better. As always, all my love and thanks to herminia for her support while I scramble to finish this. I hope you all enjoy, and feedback is much appreciated.

Here's the Prologue and Chatpers 1 - 12 for those who need to catch up!

Cross-posted to: 
delusionalfans, harmony_fiction, harryhermionehhr_danemma, blueflame_hhrand my own personal journal. 

The back door slammed shut as Hermione flew into the kitchen, her mind a swirl of irritation, confusion with a dab of fear thrown in for good measure.

 

How dare Draco have the gall to question her love for Harry? Her fists clenched angrily  at the mere thought of it. Sure, they had been going through a rough patch lately, but that didn’t mean she cared for Harry any less. She had been waiting years for Harry to realize that it was her who had always cared the most for him, so how could it be possible that she didn’t really love him?

 

Yet, if Hermione was completely honest with herself, which she always attempted to be, she could not deny that there was some kind of…pull towards Draco. This, (need a comma) of course, made absolutely no sense at all, and the reasonable side of her railed against such feelings, but they were there, and ignoring them wouldn’t make them disappear. How could she have any kind of feelings whatsoever for someone who had vocally regretted her presence on the Earth for more than seven years; someone who had even wished her dead, during the quest to find the Chamber of Secrets.

 

People change, a voice inside her said. Nothing human is constant. Be that as it may, did it really have to be Draco of all people?

 

She would certainly not classify whatever feelings these were as attraction to him, but rather an underlying similarity that allowed them to connect on a level she couldn’t with anyone else. To be sure, Harry did understand what it was like to be left on the sidelines while others went out, which is what made the whole situation so infuriating; he should be able to understand how she felt and not put her through the same thing. Even if his motives were chivalrous, he was quickly crossing the line between protector and prohibitor. She knew she loved him, she did, but she was a free witch, and leader of the DA or not, she didn’t like being told what to do.

 

So the fact that Draco had been forced to hide while the fate of his family, and the world at large, was being decided, and was now being forced to wait to earn the trust of the members of the DA was something she could understand.

 

There was also this undercurrent of needing someone that Draco did his absolute best to hide, but she picked it up, even more now that he seemed to trust her more. It wasn’t neediness, or any rubbish like that, but rather the result of an immense wellspring of loneliness, and he sometimes appeared to be reaching out to someone to help him. Why it had to be her, she guessed was based purely on the common frustration they shared, but she wished it was otherwise.

 

She also wished she was able to stop thinking about him so much, but that wish was quickly smashed as the back door opened and Draco stepped in.

 

Her anger flared up again at the sight of him, and she lashed out before he could even speak.

 

“What are you doing, following me, Malfoy? I told you I wanted to be alone!”

 

Draco stared at her, not saying anything, merely weathering the storm of her rage.

 

“I can’t believe that after all he’s done for you, you would dare question my feelings for Harry. He’s treated me like a queen, while all you’ve done is spent years and years mocking me.”

 

“The thing about queens is, they rarely get to do anything they want to, do they?” he asked quietly, his eyes boring into hers.

 

Feeling a kind of rising dread, she answered sharply, “Don’t get clever with me. You know what you’re saying is wrong; it’s just in your nature to try to make everyone hate you. I don’t know why, if it’s because of your upbringing or family or whatever bullocks it is, but I’ve had enough! If you want to be hated, go ahead.”

 

“You don’t hate me,” he said simply.

 

She was about to speak, when she stopped short. He was right; she didn’t hate him. She was angry and frustrated, but she couldn’t summon up any hate for the blonde man who stood before her.

 

“Just leave me alone, Draco. Please.” She turned her back to him, taking a deep breath and trying to collect her thoughts.

 

When she heard Draco coming towards her, she whirled.

 

“What are you, deaf? I said…” but she didn’t get to finish the sentence because before she even knew what was happening, Draco’s arms were around her and he brought his lips crashing into hers.  

 

There was none of the tenderness that was always present when she kissed Harry. This was all fire and heat. She knew she should pull away, slap him, anything, but to her utter surprise, she found herself not only letting him kiss her, but beginning to kiss him back. There was a strength and a desire she felt in him that she hadn’t felt with Harry in some time. Her arms, seemingly of their own accord, moved up and wrapped themselves around his neck.

 

They were like this for a moment only, though Hermione would remember it as feeling much longer, before some voice of reason finally broke through the mess of emotions and feelings and she pushed Draco back so hard he nearly tripped.

 

She simultaneously felt heated and like a terrible chill had descended upon her. She looked at him with what she could only guess was totally, unabashed shock, but he stared back, with nothing but longing in his eyes.

 

“Why…why did you do…” she tried to say, but the words jammed in her throat. She had nothing to say, and stared at him.

 

“For the same reason you let me,” was all Draco said in reply, and Hermione felt herself flush in reply. What have I done?

 

She must have looked as if she was about to bolt, because Draco pleadingly put up a hand and said, “Wait…don’t go.”

 

“I have to,” she muttered. “I have to get out…”

 

Draco looked at her a minute longer before saying, “Fine, go and collect yourself or whatever it is you need to do, but you need to know there’s no taking back what just happened. It’s done, and feeling guilty, or going crying to Potter isn’t going to make it disappear.”

 

Oh Merlin, Harry, she thought desperately.

 

“Look,” Draco said, trying to sound a little less severe. “I want you to come to my room tomorrow night.”

 

Hermione looked at him as if he had just suggested they try to fly without brooms.

 

“You want me to come to your room alone, after that?!” she found herself almost yelling.

 

“Just to talk, Granger, and keep your voice down, for Merlin’s sake!” He stepped closer to her, and she momentarily flinched. “We don’t have to do anything, but I need to know what this means.”

 

“What it means? Why? It was just a mistake; something that should have never happened!”

 

“But it did, and there are few things in this world that mean nothing.” He gave her a long, sad look before continuing, “And I need to know, because that’ll be the deciding factor in if I stay here or not.”

 

She gaped at him, finally at a loss.

 

“Eight o’ clock, in my room, alright?” he said.

 

With her mind a total blank and nothing else to do, no words or reason to fallback on, she merely nodded.

 

Draco nodded in return and left the kitchen.

 

Hermione remained for a moment, rooted to the ground like a statue, before walking back outside in a haze that she didn’t know if she’d ever be able to penetrate.

 

Her question kept ringing in her mind: What have I done?

 

***

 

When he was sure Hermione and Draco weren’t coming back, Callum Taliesin began to breathe again.

 

He’d spent the past three days doing as Mistress Lestrange had ordered, sneaking around, hiding in places for what seemed like ages, searching for some kind of secret that she could use against the DA.

 

It appeared he had found it.

 

The thought that he was going to report this to her, that he had to, made him want to sick up right there in the pantry closet where he had been hiding during Hermione and Draco’s entire confrontation.

 

He had heard all the words, and more importantly seen the kiss. Harry’s girlfriend kissing someone else, especially Draco Malfoy, was just the kind of thing that Mistress Lestrange was hoping for. With this kind of information, she could easily sever the ties that bound her enemies together.

 

With everything in him, he tried to resist his mind, which told him to take out the watch and contact her. He hated this; hated what he had become, hated what he was doing. He wished that she had just killed him instead of making him struggle on in this hellish torment, but he knew she got a sick pleasure out of it, and she wouldn’t stop until she got what she wanted.

 

His hand was moving to the pocket where the watch was, when he heard the front kitchen door open, and Ron Weasley walked in. The redhead looked like he had seen a ghost; his face was utterly pale, and looks of revulsion, anger and betrayal played across his face as clearly as clouds upon a full moon. 

 

Callum suddenly realized that Ron had also witnessed the scene between Hermione and Draco, and just as quickly, he knew, with absolute certainty, something else; Ron still had feelings for Hermione.

 

It had been no secret at Hogwarts that while Hermione and Ron were constantly bickering, everyone reckoned they were just too stubborn to admit their own feelings and it was only a matter of time before they ended up together. So when the news broke that Hermione was with Harry, it had struck like a shockwave. Ron had played it off as no big deal, and the fact that he was living at Claer attested to that, or so everyone thought. But the look of complete rage on Ron’s face could not be mistaken for anything else. Not only was he angry about the betrayal to Harry, but he was livid that Hermione should have done that with Draco.

 

For a while, Ron surveyed the kitchen in silence, like he was looking out over the aftermath of a battle, until finally his face became resolute, like he had made some kind of decision.

 

“I’ll show them. Both of them,” he muttered, just barely audibly. “I’ll tell Harry exactly what’s been going on right under his nose.”

 

Please no! Callum thought desperately. Don’t make it worse! Don’t give this to her! But there was nothing he could do or say.

 

Ron’s face clearly showed that his decision was made. “At eight tomorrow night, this’ll all be over,” he said darkly and left the room.

 

Callum didn’t even bother to fight the hot tears that sprung into his eyes. It, all of it, was so bloody unfair. It was over.

 

The tears leaving streaks down his cheeks, he pulled out the watch, opened it, and tapped it with his wand.  

 

Comments

Posted by: sarah (herminia)
Posted at: July 25th, 2007 02:56 pm (UTC)
HP - H/Hr // Pajama Party

Hey! Good stuff!

Posted by: calmacil_20 (calmacil_20)
Posted at: July 25th, 2007 04:49 pm (UTC)
HP - Dan/Emma - Whispering

Haha, thanks.

Posted by: obiwankatie (obiwankatie)
Posted at: July 26th, 2007 04:46 am (UTC)
MirrorMask

You deserve more reviews, especially after that awesome chapter!!

Posted by: calmacil_20 (calmacil_20)
Posted at: July 26th, 2007 05:43 am (UTC)
HP - Ron - Word

Well, I'm going to address all your comments here, so that should make things a mite easier. First off, I want to thank you very much for reading the story the whole way through, so far. As you noticed, I haven't gotten many reviews or anything on it, so I really appreciate it when someone takes the time out to read.
So, some of your points:

- I really love Luna too, especially writing her. She's so fun and interesting, while at the same time she's with it on a level that most of the other characters aren't.

- Bellatrix is also fun to write, and also a bit creepy, because she is always dancing back and forth between that line of crazy and sadistic. The joy she gets out of playing with people's minds and keeping them on edge is what I think is the most frigthening thing about her.

- I think the problem that a lot of people have had with this story is the D/Hr aspect. I'm not a huge fan of the pairing myself, but for this it made sense, and besides, anyone who knows anything about the Arthurian myths knows how this is going to turn out.

So, again, my sincerest thanks for reading. There's going to be 20 chapters, and I just finished chapter 16, so I'm close to being done writing it, and I'll be posting more soon. I hope you're still reading then. Thanks again!

Posted by: obiwankatie (obiwankatie)
Posted at: July 26th, 2007 06:32 am (UTC)
MirrorMask

I feel I should leave a comment on every chapter, so I hope I didn't bother you or anything. I hate when I have a long story posted and people just wait until the latest chapter to say anything!

And the few people I know who are still H/Hr are also D/Hr. Apparently they love Hermione to be with anyone but Ron, and I agree.

I'm a huge fan of Arthurian Legends, which means I love your fic EVEN MORE than I do now. And as long as I keep checking my friend's page on LJ, I'll keep up. I have have blueflame bookmarked now! Just to be safe!

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