The Sugar Quill
Author: Scout  Story: One Week  Chapter: Monday
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One Week

One Week


Disclaimer: Characters not mine :)


Author’s Note: This is intended to be a study of the intensity of Ron and Hermione’s relationship, over the course of a week, and how it progresses to breaking point. Set probably around sixth or seventh year. Thankyou so much again Aurelie!!


Chapter One: Monday


It is a regular day when she gets out of bed and plods to the bathroom.


Peers into the mirror, her reflection hazy, but only because she hasn’t opened her eyes properly yet.


She is still half in the Land of Dreams, and she did dream last night, that she was walking by the lake under a sky dark as mercury, and there was a tiny, tiny firefly…… and there was a sense of purpose about the whole thing, like she was there for a reason, but just as she felt she was getting closer, she had awoken, and now she isn’t sure what it might mean. Not that she necessarily thinks it means anything.


She splashes water onto her face, and blinks. In the mirror, she sees herself very clearly now, and the more she thinks about it, she is quite sure that the whole thing means absolutely nothing at all, and returns to the dorm to change, and head down to breakfast.


* * * *


He decides there are never enough hours between the time he goes to bed and the time he must get back up again, and really, the whole thing is most unfair.


Lying under the warm covers, he decides he won’t be getting up at all today, no indeed, he was just going to close his eyes again, and sink back into a long and lovely sleep, where he wouldn’t have to worry about homework and……




His eyes fly open in panic.


He is sure he has an essay due today. He thinks back hard to the night before….they were all sitting in the common room, and he had been trying to charm a Bertie Botts Every Flavour Bean to fly up Harry’s nose on command, while the others had been finishing……ahh, that’s right. A History of Magic essay. Not as bad as Potions, granted, but certainly in his top three least favourite subjects ever. And now that he has opened his mind, the whole unpleasant evening comes flooding back to him, especially the bit where she told him to stop acting like a git and do his work, or he’ll be sorry the next day, and he had said he wouldn’t be sorry because he was going to copy hers later, and she had huffed off to bed without even saying goodnight.


So now, naturally, he has no essay, and to make things much, much worse, she was going to give him her “I told you so” look the whole day.


He pulls the sheets up over his head and feels as though she is glaring at him right now.


* * * *

At breakfast, she parades her annoyance by tightening her lips and stirring her coffee rapidly, without actually pausing to take a sip. The sound of the spoon clanging around the inside of her mug echo’s in his head, loudly, and he grits his teeth.


“So I take it your still mad then?”


“Who, me? Not at all!” She feigns surprise for about three seconds before her stony expression returns. She is mad at herself too, because she had thought she was past this.


That they were past this.


But the anger had flared up unexpectedly last night. True, she was tired of him not caring about his grades. Truer still that she hated feeling like she was being used as a free homework service, while he floated lazily through classes and exams, without a care in the world.


And yet, they had come to a mutual agreement this past year, in which they were each more tolerable towards the other, as if they both knew that the time had come to grow up.


She feels herself sighing, and is suddenly not hungry anymore. Quietly, she puts away her Daily Prophet and stands to leave.


She looks sad, and he hates that.


His eyes follow her as she walks across the hall and out the doors.


He is still looking long after she is gone.


* * * *


Her morning classes dwindle by without incident, but she is unusually distracted. She keeps looking over at him, and sometimes he catches her, and she can’t stop herself from flushing. She hopes he doesn’t notice, and tries to ignore his gaze boring into the back of her head.


* * * *


At lunch, he throws a grape at her head.


He could just tell her he’s sorry of course, but that has never been his way. She can’t always understand this, because, while words are part of what define her, Ron is a parallel to this.


A parallel to her.


No, his feelings have more often than not been expressed through an action of some sort, like attempting a spell on someone who has made him angry, or flailing his arms about when he gets excited, or throwing a grape when he wants to make peace.


An olive branch has been handed to her. Theoretically, she now has two choices.


She could eat it, a sure sign that she’s accepted his offering.


Or, she could squash it with her foot and walk away.


She shakes her head, and tries not to smile, and eats the grape. The relief on his face is evident.


“Did you talk to Binns about the essay?” She asks.


He knew, of course, that this would be her first question.


“Yeah, he reckons I can hand it in tomorrow and only lose 10% of the final mark. Could have been worse, I guess.”


She looks hesitant for a moment. Word’s she wants to say are rising in her throat, only she’s self-conscious all of a sudden.


“Look I…I only got mad because I care about your grades, even if you don’t, ok?” It comes out hastily, rushed.


He looks at her curiously for a moment.


“Yeah, I know.”


And he does know this, but her saying it has made his insides swell, and he persuades himself to ignore it, because he knows perfectly well that it doesn’t mean a thing.


Swallowing hard, he forces himself to speak.


“Potions next, right?”


She pushes a wisp of hair out of her face and nods, and he suddenly loves the way her nose scrunches up at the thought of it.


* * * *


She helps him silently throughout the lesson, lest Snape should hear and get them both into trouble, and she’s not sure why she is doing this, because she doesn’t usually, only that she sincerely wants show him she’s sorry too, about the fighting, and she remembers that when they were younger she sometimes threw her arms around him after a long argument, without ever feeling terribly uncomfortable about it, and burst out some sort of apology.


But she can’t imagine doing that now, though sometimes (and its hard for her to admit it even just to herself), she badly wants to.


She feels him reach across her to pick up his quill, and doesn’t know how to explain her shaking hands.


* * * *


Harry suggests they sit outside for while after their lessons end that afternoon, since it’s such a nice day. And it is wonderful to be outside and doing nothing, with the breeze ruffling their clothes just a little as they stretch out on the grass.


She watches the leaves for a while, as they pirouette amongst themselves, and she grows so mesmerised by this dance that she doesn’t notice him talking to her.


“…….cause we really need to get the extra practice in.”




“Tomorrow night. You can come if you want.”


“Come where?”


“Have you heard anything I’ve been saying? Harry and I booked the quidditch pitch for tomorrow night so we can get some training in before next week’s game. Right after dinner. I was just saying that you can come with us if you want, but you probably don’t.”


“Oh….sorry, I wasn’t paying attention. Um…right, after dinner, sure, I’ll come.”


“You will?” He seems surprised.


“Yeah…unless you were just asking out of obligation because you didn’t think I’d say yes,” she says sarcastically.


“Well sorry, but you usually don’t seem so eager to come an watch us practice quidditch!”


This was true. She didn’t know what had made her say yes.


She realises they are both staring at each other, and neither seem willing to break eye contact, and in fact, his face is not too far away from hers, and Harry is looking on with interest.


“Um,” is all she can come up with.


He coughs gruffly, clears his throat.


Harry snickers.


Ron pelts him with a stone.


It all begins to feel too strange, and she suddenly feels like she has to get inside, away from this, where she might be able to breathe normally again.


“I’ll see you at dinner,” she says casually, “I need to get some work done in library.”


And strides purposefully away.


* * * *


In the common room, much later, Harry approaches her and asks is she is all right.


“Of course,” she says, slightly alarmed, “Why wouldn’t I be?”


Apparently she has been acting odd all day. Odd.


She gives him her best raised eyebrow and reassures him that she is perfectly fine, thankyou very much, and he does not pursue the matter.


But later, as they play an unruly game of chess, she thinks about what he had said and wonders.


* * * *


Harry waves goodnight before dashing up the stairs to bed, but Ron lingers behind. She is engrossed in a book, as always, and the fire plays tricks on her face, flickering shadows hiding first an eyebrow, then part of her lips, and then retreating altogether so that her cheeks glow a little.


He inhales loudly to get her attention, and announces that he too is off to bed.


“Ok. Goodnight.” She smiles at him.


“Right. Goodnight then.”


He turns and makes his way to the boy’s dormitories. He is left feeling slightly disappointed, but this is silly, they have been saying goodnight in the same routine manner for years.


How could he expect anything different?


* * * *


Downstairs, her smile fades.


She is tired, but knows she wont sleep well tonight. She forces herself to make a move, and notices that as usual, he has left his things strewn all over the table. Bits of parchment with hastily scribbled patches of writing, half crossed out, and ink stains everywhere, stare up at her.


So typical of him, and she rolls her eyes at this thought.


Her hand fingers his quill, half chewed at the end, and even though dreams beckon, she finds doesn’t want to let go.
















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