When Sofia finally picked herself up off the bathroom floor, she had missed all of her afternoon lessons. It was dinner time now, but she did not feel like eating. Instead, she walked through the halls alone, breathing in the familiar smells, marveling at the familiar sights drinking up the comforting silence.
If she could live her life like this, completely alone and without anything she had to do, she would trade every drop of magic in her blood. She would disappear into the mountains where she could be alone, or perhaps move to a deserted island where she could live out the rest of her life surrounded by the free air.
"But you can't," she whispered to herself. "You're stuck. You'll never be free."
She envied the people around her, the normal students who would grow up to work at the ministry, or at Gringotts, or for the Daily Prophet. She envied those who had a choice. That was all she wanted. That's all that mattered to her, the ability to control her own life, make choices for herself.
Desperate for comfort, Sofia leaned against the wall. She would go to Draco, if she could, but he had been shutting her out lately. She wanted to curl up in his arms and listen to him tell her that it was all going to be okay. Even though she knew it wasn't, it was comforting just to hear him say it.
Luke was in danger, the closer she was to him. If Voldemort knew about her relationship with him, he would use it against her. She did not want to push him away, for her always made her feel so happy, relaxed and comfortable, but she had to keep him safe.
Sofia wandered up to the clock tower. She walked to the window, looking out at the now dark sky. The moon and stars were hidden behind clouds, making the sky look black and empty.
"If only," she began to say, but cut herself off.
She could not afford to think about "what ifs" anymore. It would only give her false hope. She had to shut her mind, block out thoughts of freedom and peace. It would never come, and if she spent her life dreaming of what could never be, she would never be able to protect the people she loved.
There could be no more dreaming of a life free from the curse. There could be no more resenting Voldemort's power over her. There could be no more twisting of his words to escape fulfilling a task, or doing things that she knew would displease him. She had to be the good servant that she was born to be. She had to be the monster that Voldemort was trying to turn her into.
She thought of all of the people she had come to love: her brothers, young and innocent, Draco, her best friend from the beginning, Luke, who stole her heart, Natalie, Harry, Ron, Hermione, Ginny, Luna, Neville, Andrew, all people who were in danger because of her.
"Don't let them in," she whispered. "Don't let them know."
She couldn't let them know. She had to step back and let them all go. It was for their own good.
But what about Draco? He was in this too. Stepping back from him would not keep him safe. No, the only way to keep him safe was to help him achieve whatever Voldemort had ordered to do. He was the only one she could keep in her life, the only one she could not let go.