Fandom: Harry Potter
Word Count: 753
Summary: Hermione just wants to make sure her heart doesn't desire him. After all, he is the boy she's supposed to hate. But when the book shows her a portrait of someone else, she has to draw a different conclusion.
A/N: I'm done with this challenge from hell! I'm writing using my tablet right now, hiding under the blankets. *cries*
Anyway, today's theme is 'picture of yourself'. This story hasn't been betaread, but I hope you still enjoy.
Also, thanks for all the emails, comments, messages, v-gift, presents, and stories! I had a really wonderful birthday, and I promise, I'll reply you and make a post about it in a few hours. Right now I only have to catch some sleep. ^^
The library was empty at this time of the night. The eighth years should be able to use the library until midnight, but there were already no students at eleven. Hermione scowled. Didn't they understand how hard it had been to get the permission from Professor McGonagall? NEWTs were looming closer, they should start taking it seriously if they wanted to get a job after Hogwarts. Alas, most eighth year students chose not to come back after Hogwarts' restoration, and that included Ron and Harry.
Hermione sighed. She came here to get a book, a special one, so she had to hurry. People said the book could show you the one person your heart most desired, and Hermione needed that. She didn't want to resort to something pathetically close to Divination like this, and she hated the Mirror of Erised with passion because of its nature, but ... she had to see, had to confirm if her heart really wanted ...
Hermione shook her head. No, she shouldn't be biased. She must empty her mind and let the book guide her. She took a deep breath and began to walk towards the Restricted Section. The shelf was supposed to be near the entrance of Restricted Section, according to rumours. It was also said that the book would only answer the calls from those who really needed it, once a day. Not everyone knew about its existence, though, or else girls like Parvati and Lavender would form a long queue only to check on the book every day. And, oh, there it was. The Book of True Love.
She grabbed the book, carefully examining its cover. It was golden, with a big, red heart on the front. People said once you saw it, you'd know it right away. Now Hermione understood--no one could miss this cheesy cover. She stroked the embossed letters on the cover, and told her heart to be quiet. Once she opened the book, she'd see a picture of someone she desired. She had a suspicion, but she really wished she was wrong. This book was her chance to prove she was wrong.
With batted breath, she flipped it open. It didn't have pages of paper like a normal book, but instead its inside was made of something really thick, like animal's skin. There was a picture of a big frame on it, and in the middle of it was someone she was supposed to desire. Hermione blinked. A portrait of herself was winking at him. Was she really that narcistic?
Hermione jumped, and quickly hugged the book closed. Draco Malfoy was standing not far from her, his arms crossed before his chest.
"Malfoy," she said. God, why did it have to be him? Her heart rate picked up. She almost missed what he was saying because she was too busy telling herself to calm the hell down.
"It's nearly curfew," he said.
"What? Oh," Hermione said. "Yes, I was just--I'm done here, I was going to go back," she hurried to continue and put the book back to its shelf. She looked back at Malfoy, finding him observing her. "Wh--what is it?" Oh God, oh God, did he know that ...
"Nothing," he said. "It's almost curfew, I'll take you to your tower."
Hermione gaped, but quickly closed her mouth. She nodded and followed him, heading out of the library. They didn't talk as they walked side by side, passing dark hallways and nodding to some gossiping ghosts. Hermione tried not to stare at him too much, but she was willing to bet that she'd failed.
At the Gryffindor's entrance, Malfoy looked weird, though. He pursed his lips, waving vaguely in the general direction of the door. "There you go, your dorm," he said.
"Um, yes?" Hermione asked, and then kicked herself inside. "Oh, right, thanks for ... escorting me."
Malfoy nodded. "Good night, Granger."
"Good night, Malfoy."
Malfoy seemed to hesitate, but he turned and headed off towards his dungeons, anyway. Hermione bit her lip, and it wasn't until she had whispered the password and sat on her bed that everything came to her.
The book could only show someone's heart's desire once a day. There was a portrait of her in it. And Malfoy was hanging around near the shelf. Hermione gasped as she drew a conclusion, and started laughing out loud.
Well. She had needed the book to convince her that she didn't want Draco Malfoy, but ... who cared? She wanted him, and that was all she needed to know. Right?