It was graduation day, a day when many left to start their new lives as adults. It also marked the end of a long war. Lord Valdemort was finally gone. The wizarding world was safe thanks to Harry Potter. The war had been hard, many students lost their lives when Deatheaters attacked Hogwarts. Teachers and students banded together with the Order to fight, even the Slytherines fought with them. Everyone expected them to side with their Deatheater parents but they did not. What shocked even more was the fact that Lucius Malfoy was a spy for the Order. He helped Harry defeat the Dark Lord. Now here they all stood getting recognized as heroes, all ready to start a life in peace.
Many were the surprises after the war. Harry proposed to Ginny, to the delight of the Weasly clan. They are to be married after she graduates next year. Ron had shocked everyone when he proposed to Pansy Parkinson. She was supposed to be betrothed to Draco Malfoy but it was dissolved. Both Ron and Harry were very happy Hermione was also happy for them. She wished she had found someone to love like they had. She wanted so much to be as happy as they were, but she knew that was not going to happen.
She made her way to her dorm to gather her belongings. She was going to leave the wizarding world. She had decided to do that when she found out that the Ministry had passed the marriage law. The law stated that all muggle-born wizards and witches had to marry a pure-blooded wizard or witch. If they didn't then they would be banned from the wizarding world. She chose to live without magic rather than marry a wizard she didn't know.
Draco Malfoy saw her leave. He knew about her decision, everybody knew about it. No one ever thought that she would be the one to make such a decision. Of course who could actually blame her. She was among the few that didn't have a love interest. Other muggle-born witches already had a partner. Most of them were already engaged with other pure-bloods. Her choices were old wizards that only wanted her as a trophy wife. Her being one of the best friends of Harry Potter made her quite a catch. He understood her completely. He was in the same boat as her. Only, he had no choice but to take a wife. None of the candidates were acceptable.
He had thought about what he could do. The few months that took them to finish their studies he had been thinking of ways to get out of this situation. Or at least post pone it. He had consulted with his parents but they had been of little help. Now looking at the retreating back of Hermione Granger an idea struck him. Perhaps there was a way that they could help each other. It was obvious that she didn't want to leave this world. It was not fair that the most intelligent witch this generation has ever seen be lost because of a dumb law. Contrary to popular belief he was not as evil as he made them all think. And this might actually work for them both. Now all he had to do was convince her to go along with it all.
"Granger, can I speak to you a moment?"
"What do You want Malfoy?" She rolled her eyes and turned around.
"Could we speak somewhere more private?" He looked around nervously.
"Fine, come on." She sighed and led him to the Heads dormitory. Once there she sat in one of the couches and motioned for him to take a seat. "What do you want to talk about?"
He sat across from her. "I want to make a deal with you?"
"What kind of deal?" She asked suspiciously.
"This is not easy for me, but I know that it would benefit both of us."
"What are you talking about?" She furrowed her brows.
Draco got up and began to pace around. "Of course we would have to pretend around everyone. But we would know it's not real." He expressed waving his arms around.
Hermione was confused and didn't understand what he was trying to say. "Would you kindly explain..."
He cut her off. "I want you to marry me."
"Think about it Granger. If you marry me you wont have to leave our world and I won't marry a dimwitted girl. It's a win win situation."
"Wait, let me get this straight. You want me to marry you so that the Ministry wont choose your wife? Because that is what would happen, right?" she held up her hand.
"Look Granger, none of the girls they have offered are worthy of the Malfoy name. And none of the men that they sent you are worthy of you. If you accept, our marriage will be for appearances sake only" He began to explain.
"Are you crazy? This would never work. We are too different not to mention the history we have. Everyone knows we have hated each other since we started coming to Hogwarts. What makes you think that they would actually believe that we are in love?"
"Haven't you ever heard of 'There's a fine line between love and hate'? We could say that we fell in love while we tried to hate each other." He started to pace again.
Hermione watched him closely. It was obvious that he thought this was the only way. She sighed again, all this was giving her a headache. "Don't you think it would be awkward if we suddenly started to hug and kiss when we have always hated one another?"
"Not if we follow some basic rules I came up with." He grinned.
"What kind of rules?" She narrowed her eyes at him suspiciously.
"We touch each other affectionately briefly in front of others, otherwise we don't touch at all. By touch I mean all kinds of touch, be it kissing, hugging, or being intimate. Number two: we will not have any affairs with other people, we have to be faithful or risk being discovered. Number three: you wont interfere with my job and I wont interfere on yours, unless it is strictly necessary. I think that covers the basics. What do you say?"
"I don't know Malfoy. All this is a bit hard to process."
"Would you rather leave our world? After all the years you spent proving to every one that you belong here. Defying even the Dark Lord for your friends and defending what you believe in. Are you telling me that you are willing to throw it all away? What happened to the Gryffindor Princess? The smartest witch in our generation? You know this is the only way."
"I don;t like ti deceive my friends. What if they find out and they hate me afterwards? What will I do then?" She put her head ion her hands in frustration.
"I'm sure they would understand that you had no choice. That this was the only way that you could stay here with them." he tried to keep his calm but this girl infuriated him so much. "For Merlin's sake, Granger! We have no choice but to pretend! Just say that you accept to marry me!"
Hermione thought about all the possibilities and she hated to admit that Malfoy was right. She didn't want to leave, this was her home now. How could she leave it all behind after she fought so hard to protect it? There really was no other choice. She heard him growl in impatience.
"Granger.." He growled.
"Fine, Malfoy. I'll marry you." She sighed defeated.
She saw the tension leave his body as soon as she agreed. He smirked and kneel down in front of her. She was caught in his silvery eyes without being able to turn away.
"I'm sure we'll be able to pull this off. Now, my parents are going to have a society ball in a few days. They have invited the whole graduating class, most of the order members and Ministry officials. We shall take advantage of this and announce our engagement. What do you think?"
"Isn't it a bit too soon?" Hermione whispered with a hint of nervousness.
Malfoy smiled, not his trademark smirk, a real smile. "The sooner the Ministry knows that we are off the market the better. If we wait any longer they might force you to leave and maybe even take your magic away. I don;t know about you but I wouldn't want to risk it."
"Alright, that does make sense. We will tell them then." She smiled at him.
"Perfect. I shall leave you to finish packing. Before I go. Where can we meet so that we can prepare to the event?" He stood and took a step back.
"I have a flat in wizarding London. Let me right the address down for you. We can meet there." She got a piece of parchment and wrote down her address.
He took the parchment and left her alone with her thoughts. Hermione sat down again and let the his words replay in her head. She still felt shock at all that had happened. She widened her eyes as soon as she realized what she had agreed to.
"Merlin help me. What have I gotten myself into?"
This is my second fic here. My first Harry Potter. Let me know what you think and if I should continue adding chapters to this.
Disclaimer: I don't own Harry Potter.