Nobody ever asked my birthday

Chapter 293

No one had killed Draco Malfoy. Or punched him hard enough to break his nose. Harry was rather surprised. Oh, he'd been sure Ron wouldn't do it - Ron was a good kid, underneath all the anger management issues. And he knew enough chess to know when a game was being played. But Zach? Heck, even Luna was a possibility. And Harry well knew Malfoy's ability to get under his skin.

Harry was about to storm up to the Astronomy Tower, cast a notice-me-not spell, and get to glowering over the fragmented state of his mind. Meditation, that was the ticket, he was suddenly sure. Harry was so busy moving, that he didn't notice Hermione until he nearly knocked her over. As it was, he had her two feet closer to the door than when she started. "Harry!" she yelled. "Earth to Harry?!"

Harry caught Malfoy looking curiously at this exchange, avidly almost.* "Um. What?" Harry said, tilting his head just enough to indicate that Malfoy was still here and listening.

"I need to talk with you, Mister." Hermione said firmly, and Harry's heart sunk.

"What about?" Harry asked, opting for innocence.

"Oh, you know what about, Mister," Hermione said, grabbing him by the arm and tugging him out the door. Behind him, Harry swore he saw the ghost of a smirk on Malfoy's face.

Hermione pulled him into the first alcove she saw, casting privacy spells without waving her wand. "I'm impressed." Harry said quietly.

"You're getting a dressing down. It's not supposed to be public." Hermione said, and Harry thought Little late for that, Malfoy saw.

"What for?" Harry asked, still trying for innocence, though what he was really feeling was confusion.

"You got Neville to ask me to the dance!" Hermione said, her hands on her hips, as she was leaning within inches of his face. Harry quailed, internally, and thought that if she was just a bit more angry, she'd have sparks flying about her hair.

"...Yeah?" Harry said his confusion showing.

"Mister Harry James Potter, if you want to do something nice for me, don't you DARE do it behind my back." Hermione growled.

Harry gulped convulsively, "I"m sorry," He looked briefly pained, and then said, "Did you not want someone to go with?"

Hermione snapped back, "Not the point, Mister In the Doghouse. Ask first. Don't assume you know what I want to do."

Harry nodded, eyes wide. "I'm sorry Hermione."

Hermione smiled, and it was blinding - of course, that might have been her pearly whites, so close to his face - "Learn from it. And yes, I am quite happy to go to the dance with Neville."

Hermione left, and Harry leaned back against the wall, thinking, Women are scary. Or maybe that's just Hermione.

*Have you ever thought about what it would be like to know there's a whole world out there, and that you couldn't possibly set one foot in it? Then to see it by little glimpses and pieces, from people who weren't even your friends so you didn't get to ask questions? Malfoy's a curious sap.

[a/n: No, not just Hermione. Leave a review! Did anyone guess what Hermione was upset about? That she was upset?]