Rejection (A Drapple Fanfic)

Broken-hearted and alone, Draco has been turned down by the girl he asked to the Yule Ball. He turns to apple for comfort, and finds everything he ever hoped for from a true love, however, he doesn't know how people will react to his new relationship...

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9. Infirmary

The most irritating noise Draco had ever heard was seeping into his brain and demanding he open his eyes. At first he thought he might have died, as everything around him gave a pale cream glow, but he came to his senses and realised that was impossible. Rolling over, he noticed an assortment of bottles and jars beside his bed, and behind those was the school infirmary, So that's where he was.

He sat up. There wasn't anyone around, apart from random students in the surrounding beds, and they didn't seem to be paying him much attention. He sighed and lay back. He would be curious about why he was here, and what was happening, but he was too wrapped up in his own grief. He no longer cared what happened to him or anyone else.

Just then, a figure appeared at the door. Draco snapped his eyes shut and pretended to sleep, but whoever it was still came over.

"Mr Malfoy, I know you're awake," came the voice Draco immediately recognised as Madam Pomfrey's. He sighed and sat up, ready to get this over with. She picked up a goblet containing a yellow tinged liquid, and offered it to him, and Draco gratefully accepted. His throat was as dry as a desert. He hadn't eaten or drunk anything since Friday.

"How are you feeling?" she asked, seeming more sympathetic than he'd even seen her. He frowned slightly, he couldn't give away his secret, could he? No.

"I'm okay, thank you." He drained the last drops in his goblet, then set it down on the table and lay back down, exhausted. Madam Pomfrey tutted at him. He obviously wasn't okay; he'd been seen talking to himself by Gregory Goyle, then in the morning found asleep on the common room floor. Something wasn't right.

Draco kept his secret. Madam Pomfrey kept coming back, asking him questions and trying to trick him into talking, yet Draco just kept saying the same thing. She got Professor Sprout to bring in some sort of herb for him, but he refused to take it. He couldn't risk them giving him some Veritaserum. He even overheard the two discussing whether to notify Dumbledore. He hoped they wouldn't. The last thing he needed was some crazy old man snooping in his business.              

"I'm okay. Really," he mumbled for the millionth time. Madam Pomfrey was near to giving up, exasperated by Draco's stubbornness. He desperately wanted to leave, find Apple's core, cry by himself in the dormitory. His head was screaming at him, and it was all he could do to stop the pain registering on his face.

"When can I leave?" He asked her, his face screwed into a nervous grimace. Sighing, the weary witch gave in, dismissing the boy after giving him a small dose of her Draught of Peace, as Draco was clearly agitated. He felt slightly better afterwards, but the potion wasn't strong enough to take away his grief. 

Back in the common room, Draco scrabbled around on the floor until he discovered the apple core under a chair. It was already turning brown. Tears began to well up in his eyes, but he brushed them aside, determined to hold himself together so no one else would start asking questions. 

He went up to his dormitory to get a handkerchief, in which he carefully wrapped Apple's core before putting her in his pocket and rushing out to the school grounds. He decided to walk round the castle to the whomping willow, then head for the edge of the forbidden forest. Everyone else was inside, as it was starting to get colder, and frost would form on the grass at night. It was melted by now, and Draco's feet were completely soaked by the time he found a good spot. 

He pulled Apple out of his pocket and unwrapped her so he could look at her. The shine of her skin had begun to dull, something he never thought would happen, as he had never considered how long apples live. He spread the handkerchief on the grass, then carefully laid Apple down. Brow furrowed in deep thought, Draco drew his wand from his robe and muttered a quick incantation which pulled up a patch of grass. He got to his knees so he could scrape at the soil with his hands. Gradually, a mound of mud built up, until Draco's hands started to bleed, when he decided Apple's resting place was perfect.

Reluctantly, Draco folded the handkerchief around Apple's remains, and lowered the bundle gently into the ground. He was so cold, he couldn't feel the pain in his hands. But he didn't care.

"Apple," whispered the broken boy, "I... I hope..." There were no words for the flood of thoughts, hopes and feelings that came flooding into his mind, drowning him. He sighed, a sigh loaded with remorse, guilt, sorrow. There are no words.

"Apple, if you can hear me, I want you to know you were... amazing. I miss you. I'll never forget you."

With warm tears cutting through the frost of his face, Draco filled the grave with earth, patting it down until it was smooth and compact. He used Wingardium Leviosa to lift a rock onto the grassless ground. Before heading inside, he simply wrote on her headstone; Apple.

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