{{ contest.story_page_sticky_bar_text }} Be the first to recommend this story.
Get Free Copy

100 free copies left

This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.

0
Free copies left
You can choose from our best books below
SunlitStarshine would love your feedback! Got a few minutes to write a review?
Write a Review

Lanterns Go Out

By SunlitStarshine

Drama / Romance

Lanterns Go Out


"Oh… oh Merlin, oh..." She chokes back a sob. "Draco, what did they do to you?"

The gashes, the bruises, the sunken contours of his face. The indigo-ringed eyes and twitching fingers. She takes them all in. Damn them. How could his own parents have let

"It doesn't matter. Hermione…" His voice cracks and he grabs her clenched hands around the bars. His are colder than death. They hardly feel like flesh and blood. Devoid of life, like him, like her.

"You can't give it to them. Whatever they want, I'm not worth it."

She almost laughs, but it dries up on the way out.

It's funny because he knows.

He knows that to her, he's worth more than the entire universe.

"They want to know where this wand is," she whispers, wrapping her thumbs around his hands, needing to hold on to some part of him before he can slip away from her and disappear like a phantom. "The Elder Wand. Supposedly, it's the most powerful wand in the world- undefeatable and all that. And I'm…" She gulps. In the weeks after their 'visit' with Xenophilius, she had been loath to encourage Harry in his growing obsession with the Hallows. He always took things like this to such extremes. But her curiosity had prodded her to look through her books anyway, and she'd found it. A sketch- rough, inaccurately proportioned, and familiar. A sketch of 'The Deathstick', of a wand she'd seen before, clutched between the burnt fingers of a very old man.

"I think I'm the only one who knows where it is."

Draco's face goes white, more than it already is, if that's possible.

"No." The word is hoarse. Harsh. "I know what he'll do with it. I've seen enough of him firsthand, in his home base. I know him. Listen-" His grip tightens around hers and he steps closer, crushing shards of glass from a fallen lantern underfoot. "If you give him that kind of power… Hermione, this could be the tipping point of the whole war. You can't let him have it." He searches her face. "Potter and Weasley don't know? Just you?"

"No. Just me." A sudden tightness pulls at her throat as she remembers her hand slipping during Disapparition, the feeling of being completely alone in a tent surrounded by Death Eaters. "They aren't here, anyway. They escaped."

"Oh. Then… how did the others know…?"

"Bellatrix got in my mind just as I figured it out, and I was too distracted to notice. She didn't get the location, though, so..."

"Wait." He scans her with wild, panicked eyes, and his speech grows strained to the point of snapping. "Did they do anything to you?"

A beat.

"Draco…"

"Did they do anything to you?"

Hermione takes in a shaky breath and looks at the ground. "Yes," she says, barely audible, "Cruciatus, and a knife, but-"

"Oh, God." His forehead sinks against the bars and then he's trembling, tremors shuddering across his body. "I'm so sorry, Hermione, I'm so…"

"It's not your fault!"

"Yes, but it's my family!" His head is back up now and hatred and shame is burning in every line of it. She loosens one hand from his grasp, reaching up to smooth the tension from his jaw. It loosens slightly, but the pain is still there, painting the rest of his features. Eating him alive.

"Draco." She lets the name slip like soothing medicine from her throat, soft as a breeze. He closes his shadowed eyes. Her head shakes and she runs a finger back up his jaw, then down again. Up, down, up. "You think you have reason to feel guilty? You've suffered so, so much worse than me. My cuts are nothing compared to yours. And it's directly my fault. You're here because you chose me, I… I did this to you."

Something painful shifts in her. Her voice grows low.

"I can't let them do any more."

Draco's eyes fly open, but he doesn't argue. Doesn't beg again for her not to make the trade, because he knows it's futile. Instead, he mumbles, quietly but with the force of an avalanche.

"I'd choose you again a thousand times if I could."

Then he grabs her chin through the bars of his dungeon, his home, touch featherlight, and slides his lips against hers.

She hesitates for only an instant before pressing as close as the icy metal will allow.

His lips are swollen and cracked, and she tastes his blood mingling with the sweetness no amount of torture could erase. The fingers that had been stroking his jaw fall to his neck, and their clasped hands become an unbreakable link, no gap discernible between them to mark the distinction of two separate beings. A tear, hot as fire and frigid as winter, slides down Hermione's cheek without her consent. It doesn't matter that she's about to save his life- that there is no hope for his freedom is enough to break her. And even if he lives another day, the future, their future, is in precarious hands indeed.

When she pulls away, she expects him to console her. Expects him to say there's no point in crying; everything will be alright when all's done. But he doesn't. He sees her tear. He smiles- a watery, packed, terrifying smile. He seems to struggle for words to say, but just three come out of his mouth.

The only three that matter.

And Hermione's screams echo against every aristocratic arch and wall in the Manor as he plunges a shard of glass from the broken lantern into his heart.

Write a Review Did you enjoy my story? Please let me know what you think by leaving a review! Thanks, SunlitStarshine
Continue Reading
Further Recommendations

Giuliana Cassetta: My face is full of tears, I never cried like now with a book or even a movie. I loved every single chapter. I truly don't know what to say, I'm out of words and my eyes hurt from crying. Such an bittersweet story, it's so wonderful. One of my favorites for sure. Keep it up!

Stephen Warner: To start off, I am thoroughly impressed. The writing style is somewhat unique, and the plot seemed to move at a nice and steady pace. However, I was not expecting this to be a vampire book! I am usually not one for novels about vampires, but I was pleasantly surprised! You wrote with such grace a...

annie08c: I really like this story, I can relate to it a lot and with how she feels, the boyfriend and the events that happened but I'm a little bit younger. It was really good plot, really liked how you stuck to the topic and you had a new title for every chapter making me guess what's going to happen. Ma...

rudyoxborough46: An action-packed, mystical adventure awaits anyone wishing to read this novel. I’m amazed at how well you’ve managed to flesh out the characters in this book, and I hope to read more of your work.I’ve read books about goblins and elves and all that mumbo-jumbo before, and most accounts of these c...

Jade Niday: This book has a really great plot. The author really makes you feel connected to the main character. There are twist around every corner you never see coming.. Great read for sure and I can't wait to see what happens next.

ernbelle: When I first started this story I was a little unsettled by all of the information that appears in the prologue, and wasn't sure if I would continue. However, I am very glad I did. The plot was very well thought out and really interesting. There were not any page breaks or markers to acknowledge ...

Alex Rushmer: Chapter One: Not much is happening in this chapter, but I was absolutely fascinated by the depth of your character development. I love how you just sat there with the reader and explored Eddward. Usually, that sort of thing gets boring very fast, but this was actually really cool! He's so unique ...

emmaneal74: I loved this booked. Would definitely buy it when published and read it again. The story flowed in such a way I just couldn't put it down. I was never confused about the characters or their roles in the story which can happen sometimes with so many lead. I'd recommend this to anyone wanting to r...

Alani Foreigner: I absolutely loved how you created this story. It isn't like the other cliché stories I've ever read. I had just started reading it yesterday and just had to finish it. The main characters are grotesquely awesome and I fell in love with them. If you're into fantasy and stuff I can guarantee that ...

More Recommendations

Shreya Biswas: Finally god...... I was tired of Charissa doubting Frederick's love... yes.. All's well that ends well.... i was getting really downright agitated at the author because the suspense was held really well on how things will work out in the epilogue and i just wanted them to have a happy ending.. An...

Alkira Joan: I omg I am honestly speechless I couldn't stop cry it's so sad I wish it had a better ending and they would all be happy and the end is their going to be a second book?thanks for the amaZing story xoxox

maewilde25: I am so in love with this story!!! captivated me till the very end, there wasn't a dull moment. Didn't particularly enjoy the lay out and some bits of info was missing along with how a 21 year old man amassed so much wealth that needed to be explained other than that and a few spelling errors, th...

Flik: Hi! ^.^ huge fan of yours on ff.net! When I saw the note about this contest on The Way We Smile, I couldn't help but rush over here, create an account, and vote! XD Seriously love this story and would recommend it to anyone! :D best FT fanfiction out there. Amazing story, amazing concept that wa...

christylynnr5: This was beyond amazing! I loved this book. The characters seemed so real. It was amazing how the author let Zak and Kaylees personalities slowly change. This story was very sad and eye opening. It could teach some people a very worthy lesson. It was a great combination of romance, mystery, and a...

263Adder: Okay so I adore this story. I only knocked one star off plot for historical inaccuracies because I'm a bit of a stickler for that. The ending broke my heart though, considering you already changed history couldn't you (SPOILER) change it a bit more and have them together!!!! I want an alternative...

About Us:

Inkitt is the world’s first reader-powered book publisher, offering an online community for talented authors and book lovers. Write captivating stories, read enchanting novels, and we’ll publish the books you love the most based on crowd wisdom.