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Hermione’s Bad Idea

Part One

By Mena Baines

It was a cold, rainy afternoon at Hogwarts, and Hermione Granger was fed up. She was fed up with second guessing, and blushing every time Harry Potter looked at her, and even Harry himself, after what had happened last week. Harry’s best friend Ron had disclosed to her that Harry did indeed have feelings for her—not only that, but he talked about her enough to drive Ron crazy. At the moment, this news had seemed great, but now Hermione was not so sure. If Harry was truly as infatuated with her as she was with him, why didn’t he show it? He was still acting the same way he always had—tripping over his words whenever their eyes met, grabbing her shoulders in a friendly/flirty manner, but nothing more.

“ Hermione, can you hand me that Encyclopedia Mythica over there?” Ron asked her, breaking her thoughts. They were sitting in the library, studying for a history test. Hermione handed him the book, and tried again to concentrate on the ritualistic behavior of Banshees in Northern Ireland. But it was no use.

“ Ron,” she said, and his eyes peeked up over the huge, dusty mythology book, “ Were you lying to me the other day?” she asked, “ About Harry?”

“ No.” Ron said, his head disappearing behind the book again. She saw him peek around either side to make sure no one was coming, and then, “ Come here,” he whispered. Hermione, feeling a bit strange, also gave the library a once-over to make sure Harry was no where near, and then joined Ron behind the pages of the gigantic book, ducking down in the seat next to him.

Ron sighed, and dust from the books pages blew into both their faces. “ I shouldn’t be talking about this,” he said, coughing, “ I’ve done enough damage already. But you do seem, interested, so I, I can’t say he wouldn’t be glad if you…knew. I guess.”

Hermione waved a cloud of dust out of her face. “ I don’t understand him, though.” Hermione said, “ If he REALLY DOES like me, why doesn’t he…I don’t know…do something…about it?”

Ron rolled his eyes. “ I don’t KNOW Hermione,” he said, “ Why don’t YOU?” Hermione’s cheeks flushed red.

“ Well I’m scared of course! Even knowing…what I know.” She couldn’t believe she was finally being honest with Ron about Harry. It was actually a huge relief. “ I mean…I’m just…me, but he’s…he’s Harry POTTER, for the sake of Great Wizards! When has he ever been afraid of anything?”

Ron just pointed his finger at her. “ I guess you’re scarier than Voldemort.” He teased with a grin.

“ What…are you guys doing?” came Harry’s voice over the cover of the book. Ron and Hermione gasped and dropped the book, which smashed onto the table and sent a tidal wave of dust washing over them.

“ Oh, Harry, heh,” Ron stuttered, coughing. He was glancing at them suspiciously. Luckily Rosa was headed their way with Draco Malfoy. Hermione was actually glad—they would be a great distraction, as she didn’t feel like explaining why she was hiding behind a mythology encyclopedia with Ron.

“ Good’day mates,” Rosa said, her usually absurdly cheerful self. Draco was scowling, and Hermione noticed she had hold of his arm, her bright purple nails digging into his wrist. “ What’s going on over here? Studying? Well I’ll put an end to this!” she said, throwing her bag onto the table and knocking Hermione’s parchment to the floor.

“ Rosa!” Hermione scolded, “ Watch what you’re doing.” She bent down to pick up her things at the same time as Harry, and knocked the top of her head against his.

“ Ouch, sorry!” Harry said, rubbing his head and smiling. He gathered up her papers for her and laid them back on the table. Hermione just blushed. She couldn’t talk to him anymore without feeling embarrassed about what she knew about him. She heard Ron snickering. Hermione could tell he was enjoying their little exploits much more now that he was the wiser on both sides of the coin.

“ Smooth move, Potter,” Draco sneered.

“ Here, Hermione I want to show you something you may find useful,” Rosa was saying as she swung her feet up onto the table.

“ Not now.” Hermione muttered.

“ Man,” Harry said, looking out the window at the pouring rain, “ The team is going to kill me….but we really need the practice,”

“ Why bother, Potter?” Draco asked, “ Slytherin is in the lead, are we not? You haven’t a chance with the team you’ve got this year anyway! What a bunch of clowns!”

“ Malfoy, dear,” Rosa said politely, thumbing through one of the books she’d brought. “ Shut up.”

But it was too late.

“ Oh, yeah, I guess we don’t have a chance just like we didn’t when Slytherin was leading in our third year, either,” Harry shot back venomously, “ When you had to CHEAT to try and hold the lead and we STILL won the cup!”

Malfoy’s cheeks turned pink. “ Cheating?” he shouted, “ You liar! That’s preposterous!”

“ Come on, Malfoy, like, ten different students still have pictures of you getting caught with Crabbe and Goyle in dementor costumes in the middle of the field.” Hermione reminded him causally.

“ That’s right,” Harry said, beaming, “ Your finest hour,” he said, sarcastically.

“ Oh, Granger, what do you know?” Malfoy snapped at her, “ Anyway, back then WOOD was the captain—and look who you’ve got now! Old four-eyes couldn’t run a junior league team! And you expect him to lead you to the cup?” he asked, glaring at Harry, “ Ha!”

“ Who invited you over here anyway, Malfoy?” Harry barked, “ If you have a problem with Gryffindor, then why don’t you just get lost?”

“ Harry,” Hermione warned, noticing that some of the librarians were staring at them maliciously. Harry and Malfoy were staring each other down, practically standing nose-to-nose.

“ Boys, boys,” Rosa said, with her eyes still on the book she was reading. “ Calm down. It’s just Quidditch…it’s just a grudge that’s lasted seven years…” Rosa went on but no one was listening.

“ You just wait, Potter,” Draco threatened, beginning to walk away, “ No one talks to me like that and gets away with it.”

“ Draco,” Harry called after him, “ I’ve been talking to you like this for seven years and nothing has ever come of it. I think your threats are about as empty as your brain.”

Hermione and Ron laughed, and even Rosa couldn’t contain a chuckle as Malfoy stormed off.

***************************************************************************

Hermione was determined to make some leeway with Harry at dinner. She next to him, as always, and scooted as close to him as she could without sitting in his lap. I’ll just have to throw signals in his face, Hermione thought, if that’s what it takes to get his courage up. Hermione set down her tray and gave Harry something that she hoped was a seductive glance.

“ Hermione, are you coming down with something?” a concerned Seamus Finnigan asked. She rolled her eyes.

“ I’m fine.” She said politely. “ Um, Harry, could, I have some of your, um, ham?” she asked, not knowing where to begin with her plan.

“ Well, yeah,” he said, looking at her suspiciously, “ But, er—isn’t that ham on your plate?”

“ Oh, silly me, it is!” Hermione said, her cheeks turning a furious crimson as everyone eyed her strangely. Suddenly Ron seemed to pick up on what she was trying to do. Hermione would wish he hadn’t.

“ Hey, Hermione looks really GREAT tonight, doesn’t she?” Ron asked loudly. Hermione frowned. Her shirt was un-tucked, her skirt was wrinkled, her kneesocks pushed down too far, and her hair was unruly and full of static cling. “ Wow,” Ron said, “ I’ve never seen Hermione look this pretty, eh, Harry?”

Hermione wanted to sink into the floor and disappear, or kill Ron, one.

“ What are you TALKING about?” Rosa asked with a mouth full of potatoes.

“ Yeah, um, yes.” Harry said, glancing at Hermione timidly, and then giving Ron a meaningful glare. Oh, Harry, stop the pretense, I already know, Hermione wanted to shout.

Embarrassed after Ron’s well-meaning outburst, Hermione hurriedly ate her dinner and avoided Harry’s suspicious sideways glances. She got tired of watching him playing stupid, and excused herself from the table. She was beginning to find Harry’s keeping his crush on her a secret very selfish indeed.

“ Hey, Hermione, wait up,” she heard him following her. Well, of course he’s coming after me, Hermione thought, turning around and looking back at him, trying to seem cool and annoyed. “ Why are you leaving so early?” he asked once he’d caught up to her, “ Ron and Ginny haven’t fought yet—Rosa hasn’t even made us all sick with her lovey-talk about Draco.” Harry said with a smile. Hermione grinned, though she tried not to.

“ Not funny.” She said flatly.

“ Are you mad?” Harry asked, confused.

“ Stop asking me that.” Hermione knew she was being a little mean, but now that she knew she had him in the palm of her hand, she felt she didn’t have to try so hard with him. They walked together in silence, Harry watching her with fondness in his eyes, and Hermione staring down at her shoes. Dusk was falling around the castle, and the rain was beginning to slow.

“ Let’s go outside.” Harry suggested, “ I love how it looks out after it rains.”

“ Okay.” Hermione said evenly, though inside she was over-joyed. Finally—maybe—Harry would make some move to show her how he really felt about her. They crept out into the courtyard and walked around to the front of the castle, finally settling on some rocks over-looking the lake.

“ Where’s the squid tonight?” Harry asked, sitting down beside her, and Hermione thought she heard his voice shaking.

“ I don’t know,” Hermione whispered, “ Maybe he has a hot date with a female squid.” She said suggestively. Harry smirked.

“ You aren’t still mad about the whole Ron fiasco?” Harry asked, “ That silly date and all—it was all Lavender’s idea—“

“ I know, Harry.” Hermione said, looking him in the face. Their eyes locked together, and Hermione thought he shrunk back a bit. He’s scared, Hermione thought—Great Wizards, why?

For a moment Hermione thought one of them might actually do something. Harry’s mouth fell slightly open for a few seconds, and she saw him glance down at her lips. Then his ears seemed to turn very red, and Hermione felt a involuntary twitch in her left hand, willing herself to reach up and stroke his cheek affectionately. Don’t be scared, Hermione would whisper, it’s just me. But she pushed the offending hand back down onto the hard surface of the rock, her stomach doing flip turns at the very idea of doing such a thing.

“ C-Can you believe Draco?” Harry asked, and his voice seemed very loud in the softness of the moment. “ Saying that stuff about me…and….our team. Some nerve. What does Rosa see in him?”

“ I don’t know.” Hermione said quietly, wishing he wouldn’t talk about Rosa, or Draco, or anything. “ What does anybody see in anybody?” she added bitterly, fed up with herself for being such a wimp, and with Harry for being the same. She pulled her legs up to her chest and wrapped her arms around them, staring out absently at the lake.

“ What do you mean?” he asked, following her gaze. The lake looked calm and perfect, and a cold wind from the Forrest blew up off it’s surface and onto the two them. Hermione shivered in the cold and shut her eyes for a moment, trying not to think about the odd dreams she’d been having about the Forrest. She felt Harry place a hand on her back, and she stiffened a bit, then she felt his whole arm slide across her shoulders. Hermione opened her eyes and froze. She waited for Harry to give her one of his friendly squeezes, say something banal and remove his arm, leaving her with only the memory of his warm touch. But he didn’t.

“ Y-you looked cold.” Harry said, his face flushing to match the crimson color of his ears. He wrapped his arm tightly around her and cradled her closer to him. Hermione smiled at him and he quickly looked away, up at the darkening sky.

“ I am—I, was.” Hermione stuttered, unable to project her voice past a tiny squeak. She felt like her heart would explode from over-excitement as Harry held her, too nervous to look her in the face, but holding her all the same. He moved his head slightly closer to hers, and Hermione felt a jolt of electricity in her body that made her bones quiver. Thunder from the receding storm rumbled softly in the distance.

Harry raised his head and looked up at Hermione, his bangs brushing across her forehead, making goosebumps appear on her arms. “ I, uh,” he didn’t seem to have any words, “ Still cold?” he whispered.

“ No, I’m quite—warm.” Hermione answered, which was actually a lie. Warm was too much an understatement—her cheeks were hot, her heart was on fire, everything about her was alive and awake to the to fact that Harry was only a few inches from kissing her.

“ I should tell you,” Harry said, letting out a breath. “ About that whole thing with Ron—the date, and why everything went like it did…” he trailed off, and Hermione waited for more. She knew, of course, the story behind the date, but she wanted to hear it from Harry.

“ Yeah?” Hermione said, wishing she could just enjoy the moment, leaning into Harry’s arms against the cold as the last of the sun disappeared behind the storm clouds. But she was impatient—she couldn’t wait much longer for Harry to fess up to his feelings for her. There was more thunder, this time closer, and Hermione felt a rain drop on her cheek.

“ I…don’t think I can say it.” Harry said, looking away from her again. “ My voice….” He muttered, and Hermione could hear that it was trembling. Put your arms around him, she ordered her frozen body, tell him it’s alright. Tell him you know, tell him you love him, for the sake of Great Wizards, say something…. Her brain had the right idea but her body refused to cooperate.

“ Harry….” she said, feeling more rain drops, coming faster now, glimpsing a flash of lighting beyond the trees across the lake. “ It’s raining.” She inwardly cursed herself, but she couldn’t come up with anything else.

“ So it is,” Harry said, turning his face up to the sky, and letting the rain fall onto his closed eyes, the water taking the redness from his cheeks. His arm slid off of Hermione’s shoulders, and she stood up, disappointed.

“ Come on.” She said, almost angry, “ Let’s get back before we catch pneumonia.” Harry stood and followed her back to the castle, their pace quickening as the rain came down harder. They broke into a run as they neared the front entrance, and Hermione could hear Harry stop suddenly behind her.

“ Wait!” he called, “ My glasses!” Hermione turned, and she could see through the downpour that his glasses had fallen off into the mud. “ Where are they?” he asked desperately, and Hermione bent down and grabbed them.

“ I’ve got them, come on!” she shouted, a crack of lightning making her jump, the thunder sounding loudly, all around them. Hermione realized Harry couldn’t see, and grabbed his hand before taking off running. They finally made their way up the front steps, Hermione dragging Harry behind her, and threw themselves inside the huge front doors.

They stood for a moment in the lobby near the doors, catching their breath and dripping rainwater all over the dark red carpet.

“ My glasses,” Harry said, still out of breath, reaching for them and grabbing Hermione’s arm instead. She looked at him, his eyes brighter than ever without his glasses in the way.

“ Wait,” she said, as he felt his way down her arm toward the glasses she held in her hand.

“ They’re all dirty.” Without really thinking about it, Hermione grabbed the front of Harry’s shirt to wipe the mud and water off of the lenses. Harry scooted close to her as she held onto his shirt. Very close. Hermione lost her concentration and kept rubbing the glasses dry after they were already clean. Harry bent his head and rested his forehead against hers. Hermione’s breath caught in her throat and she stopped cleaning the glasses, afraid to move.

“ Hermione,” Harry said, his voice finally showing some measure of composure, “ What I was trying to tell you out there is that—“

“ Hey, guys, what are you doing?” came an annoying voice that Hermione recognized as Rosa’s. She jumped back from Harry, dropping his glasses on the ground.

“ Oh—“

“ Whoops—“

They both bent to pick up the glasses and knocked their heads together on the way down. Rosa snickered—Hermione wanted to kill her, more so than she usually did.

Harry just laughed and rubbed his head, retrieving the glasses and shoving them back onto his face. “ Heh—sorry. Isn’t that the second time we’ve done that today?”

“ Yes.” Hermione said through gritted teeth, knowing they weren’t talking about the same thing.

“ Come on, Her-mione, didn’t I tell you I had something to show you?” Rosa asked, twirling around a little vile of potion. Hermione frowned—Rosa always had something to show her. It was becoming tiresome. “ You’ll never believe what I made,” she said with a grin.

“ Show me later.” Hermione muttered. “ Come on, Harry, let’s go dry off, I’m freezing.”

“ Okay,” Harry said, following Hermione toward Gryffindor Tower, with Rosa not far behind.

“ How’d you guys get wet in the first place?” Rosa asked, “ I mean, what were you doing outside?”

Neither of them felt like explaining.

****************************************************************************

Hermione sat near the fire in the Gryffindor common room, a blanket wrapped around her, Harry and Ron sitting on either side of her. Ron was playing with his little owl, Lucky, and talking absently about Quidditch and the up-coming match against Slytherin. Harry was staring at the fire and answering Ron’s questions about the team without looking at him.

“ How’s Rudy’s knee doing?” Ron asked of their star Chaser, Rudy Valentine. “ Is it still acting up?”

“ She’s fine.” Harry said. He seemed distracted. Hermione’s heart rate was still pounding after what had happened at the front entrance. She sat quietly, feigning calm.

“ Well, I hope we kill Slytherin next week, especially after what Malfoy said this morning.” Ron said.

Hermione looked at him. “ Obviously.” She snapped, wishing he’d go to bed. Other than a group of first years playing Exploding Snap across the room, Ron was the only Gryffindor left in the common room.

“ Alright,” Ron said, standing up, “ I can tell when I’m not wanted.” Harry looked at him for the first time since he’d fixed an intense gaze on the fire. He had that scared look in his eyes again.

“ What is he talking about?” Harry asked as Ron walked off.

“ Who cares.” Hermione muttered.

“ Huh?”

“ Nothing.”

Harry went back to staring at the fire, his hands twisting nervously in his lap. Hermione opened her mouth a few times but words just didn’t seem right. Everything seemed so quiet and still, despite the exuberant shots of Marcus Reily and the other first years as they continued their Exploding Snap game.

“ Remember when we used to play that all the time?” Hermione asked, finally finding her voice.

“ Yeah.” Harry said, watching the kids from across the room. “ It doesn’t seem that long ago.”

“ I know,” Hermione agreed, “ Seven years went by too fast.” Harry nodded. Hermione felt a lump in her throat as she watched Marcus playfully grab onto Tippy Gates’ arm and swing her around, laughing.

“ Harry,” Hermione said quietly, “ It’s stupid…but…I’m afraid to leave Hogwarts. What will I do afterwards, you know?” Harry nodded again, his blank gaze still fixed on the Exploding Snap game.

“ Aren’t you ever…scared like that?” Hermione asked carefully. “ About something stupid? Just something that makes you…er…nervous?”

“ I guess,” Harry said, pulling some of her blanket around her shoulders. “ I’m still cold.” He said, “ I hope I’m not coming down with something.” He leaned back onto the couch, his shoulder against hers, as if the two of them wrapped together in the blanket was nothing. How could he be cold? They were sitting in front of the fire—he just wanted to be…next to me, Hermione thought, smiling to herself.

“ If I do have a cold, it might be contagious.” Harry said, looking at her, his face close to hers. “ You might get sick to.” He said, and Hermione wasn’t sure what he was getting at.

“ I don’t care.” Hermione said without thinking.

Harry was silent for a moment. “ That’s what scares me, Hermione,” he said quietly, almost as if he were talking to himself. “ I don’t know how stupid it is, but it scares me.”

Hermione didn’t understand. She didn’t have time to ask him what he meant, as Marcus choose that moment to trot over and tease her.

“ Cheating on Ron, Hermione?” he asked, and Tippy, not far behind, giggled. Hermione stood up abruptly and walked to the corridor, not in the mood to deal with Marcus. Harry followed her, and they stopped at the intersection where the stairs leading to the separate boys and girls dorms were.

“ Harry,” Hermione said, gathering courage. “ What were you going to tell me before—before Rosa interrupted? After we came in from the rain?”

Harry was thoughtful for a moment, and Hermione waited patiently for his answer. “ I…” he finally said, and she held her breath. They were all alone in the hall, far from Marcus and his game of Exploding Snap, and far from the noisy Rosa, clumsy Ron. There was nothing to spoil the moment….

Except Harry.

“ I don’t remember.” He said quickly, looking strangely calm. “ I gotta go to bed…I think I’m coming down with something. Goodnight.” With that he turned and headed upstairs to the boys dorms. Hermione stood stubbornly where she was, hating him as he left her because she loved him so much.

****************************************************************************

When Hermione got back to her room, Rosa was lying on her bed, still handling the little vile she’d been wanting to show her. Hermione didn’t feel like talking. She’d never felt so disappointed and confused in her life. She stomped into the bathroom, and found herself wishing that people were more like Arithmacy as she got undressed and pulled on her nightgown. At least Arithmacy was cut and dry—it always followed the rules, one way or the other. No surprise endings, no confusing mood swings.

“ You okay?” Rosa asked when Hermione emerged from the bathroom, and she actually sounded concerned. Hermione fell back onto her bed and stared at the ceiling. She was quiet for a long time, and Rosa just watched her, tossing the vile to herself speechlessly.

“ I’m a fool.” Hermione said, finally.

Rosa sighed. “ You’re not.” She said, “ Don’t say that.”

“ I am.” Hermione snapped. “ Don’t argue with me. Don’t you think I know when I’ve been a fool? I’m ridiculous. Harry is a frivolous, stupid obsession that has brought me absolutely nothing in seven years. I need to stop thinking about him so much—Great Wizards! Ridiculous.”

Rosa was actually quiet for a moment. “ How do you know that he doesn’t think the same foolish things about you?” she asked.

Hermione shut her eyes. She didn’t want to go to sleep, end up dreaming about the Forrest again and wake up scared. “ I don’t know.” Hermione answered. “ I guess I thought I did…Ron LIED to me. Can you believe that?” she waited for Rosa to say something, but she didn’t. “ You know, more people should step back and take a look at themselves like I have.” Hermione said, “ You’d really be shocked at the way you act sometimes. I’ve been acting like someone….like someone I’d really HATE if they weren’t me. Following Harry around like some…some….I mean, I’m acting like PAVARTI, for the sake of Great Wizards.”

“ Great Wizards,” Rosa muttered, and Hermione could tell she was losing interest. “ Must be an English expression.”

“ You know, if I never saw Harry Potter again it would be too soon.” Hermione said, “ It’d probably be good for me. For him, too, I’m sure he wouldn’t miss me.” She scoffed. “ Maybe I’d regain some of my sanity. I wasn’t always like this, you know.”

“ Yeah…”

“ Anyhow,” Hermione said with a sigh, “ Ron is a liar and Harry is a…a…I don’t know, someone dishonest who doesn’t quite lie but rather…rather…leads you to believe certain things and then lets you down. I hate boys. I’m never speaking to any of them again.”

“ Uh-huh,” Rosa said, “ But check out what I made!” she said, smiling and tossing Hermione the vile. “ Be careful with that.” Rosa said, “ It’s very potent.”

“ What is this? It looks like…”

“ That’s right,” Rosa said, her grin widening. “ Love potion.”

“ Love potion?” Hermione exclaimed, throwing it back to her. “ Get it away from me. For what?”

“ For Draco, of course!” Rosa said, beaming, “ It only lasts for a few days. I thought I’d have a little fun with him. You know, embarrass him, at least.”

“ My stomach hurts.” Hermione moaned. “ How are you going to get him to take it?”

“ That’s the beauty of it!” Rosa said, standing and walking to the window, “ All you have to do is drink it yourself, and the one you love is yours!” she giggled with excitement, “ All it needs is a little moonlight and it’ll be good to go!” She said, placing the vile on the windowsill.

Hermione sighed. “ Draco is going to kill you.”

Rosa grinned. “ I know.” She said, “ Ain’t love grand?”

**************************************************************************

It was the Forest again. Hermione only had to shut her eyes and she was transported back there, still wearing the unfamiliar silky nightgown and bleeding from a mysterious gash in her arm. What happened to me? Hermione wondered. She wanted to comfort herself in the dream—she looked so scared. Hermione could hear herself calling Harry’s name as she trotted through the Forrest, a little more quickly than she had in the last version of this dream. Why are you looking for Harry, Hermione thought bitterly. Maybe if you looked out for yourself once in awhile and pulled your thick head out of the clouds— Suddenly Hermione saw something move through the trees. It was only a flash of black, but it gave her a horrible feeling of dread. Watch out! She wanted to scream at herself in the dream. Something is after you!

There was a flash of light, and the Forrest, the nightgown, and the black figure in the trees were all gone. Hermione was in a hospital. But she wasn’t sick or injured, she was just standing at the end of a long corridor, looking out a window at the city. It looked like London, but Hermione couldn’t be sure. I look so sad, she thought.

Another flash, and she was lying on the ground. But now, instead of watching herself, she was actually lying there, staring up at the trees. And she was panicking. She saw something out of the corner of her eye. My blood, your blood, she thought, and she reached up and ripped off her necklace.

Hermione woke up, and sat bolt upright in bed. She reached up and touched her necklace, the little amethyst token Harry had given her for her birthday. It was still in tact. She glanced at her arm to make sure she wasn’t bleeding there. A streak of crimson blood ran down her arm.

Hermione gasped, too afraid to even scream. Before she even began to fathom how her shoulder had been cut, she reached for her lamp and turned it on. As soon as it’s light filled the room she looked down to examine the cut. But it was gone.

Hermione, stop it! She thought to herself, climbing out of bed. You were just seeing things, she told herself, though she wasn’t sure she believed it. These horrible dreams are making you crazy….her heart was pounding like mad. She felt terrified, though she didn’t know why.

Hermione went to the window and peered out at the Forbidden Forrest, shivering as the moon overhead bathed it in an eerie glow. She moved Rosa’s love potion so she could shut the curtains.

The love potion. It gleamed up at her from it’s vile, a superficial pink color that sparkled in the moon light. I wonder what it tastes like…Hermione thought. All you have to do is drink it, and the one you love is yours… Rosa made it sound so easy.

Hermione wanted to give Harry a taste of his own medicine. She wanted HIM to be the one following her around, making a fool of himself without even knowing it. She wanted HIM to be haunted by odd dreams where he was calling HER name. She wanted to truly rip the necklace off, throw it in his face and break his heart.

Hermione’s mind was racing. Harry deserved this. It only lasted a few days, while he’d tormented her for seven years. She remembered in their fifth year, how she used to cry whenever he held his ex-girlfriend Cho Chang’s hand at dinner. She thought about the way he’d ignored her when Rosa first came to Hogwarts, and left her wondering if he cared about her at all. All the good experiences she’d had with Harry suddenly seemed so small and insignificant. All she could think about was the cool way he’d brushed her off when she’d asked him what he had wanted to say to her earlier. What did it matter to him, after all? He knew from experience that Hermione would be back tomorrow, as forgiving as always and in love with him all over again.

If only the tables were turned…

I’ll just take a little sip…Hermione thought, Rosa will never even notice…

But as soon as she touched the bottle to her lips she felt a strange sensation creep over her…her vision faded away and a warm feeling spread through her body.

Hermione saw herself standing in the middle of something that looked like a tornado. Only it didn’t appear dangerous, and she wasn’t afraid. The tornado-like spiral gave off a yellowish glow, and everything looked soft and light, as if it were filtered through a gauzy camera lens. Am I having another dream? Hermione wondered, but she could feel herself drinking the potion. Suddenly Harry stepped inside the tornado. He looked really handsome, and he smiled when he saw her. They reached out and touched each others hands, and beams of light seemed to shoot out all around them…

The beautiful vision slipped away, and Hermione was again standing in her bedroom. She dropped the vile of potion and it shattered on the floor, empty. Hermione had, unknowingly, drunken all of it. She looked quickly at Rosa, but she was still fast asleep. What did I just do? Hermione wondered, still in a daze. I can’t believe I drank the whole thing…

She crawled back to bed, but not before opening the window a crack. Tomorrow she would explain to Rosa that a strong wind must have knocked over her potion. And that would be the end of it—Hermione was relatively sure that the love spell wouldn’t work anyway. Rosa was not known for accurately creating concoctions. She had an F in Potions, after all.

To be continued…. :)