Neville and I arrived at the common room just in time to grab a seat before the influx of first years. We sat on the comforting sofa and discussed our summers. I mostly just let Neville talk, I didn't really want to talk about my summer. When the first years finally arrived they stared at me and Neville.
"Is that Hermione Granger?" one of them asked. The whole wizarding world knew about the war and the horcruxes, I couldn't go anywhere without being recognised. The prefect looked at me, unsure of what to say. The poor lad obviously didn't know what he was really doing. I smiled and nodded.
"Yes, that is Hermione Granger, but don't disturb her, she's still just like all of you. She's here to learn, not to be gawked at by first years." This stopped most of them from staring. I smiled at the prefect gratefully. Once all the first years had left Neville tried to make conversation but I wasn't really listening. I suddenly noticed that everyone in the common room was standing and I looked around and realised Professor McGonagall was entering.
"Oh please, you don't have to do that," she said, waving her hands around to indicate that we should all sit down. "Granger, Longbottom, can I have a word?" We both followed her out of the common room and she guided us into an empty classroom. One of the new professors entered, with Luna by his side.
"I found Luna for you, Professor," he said.
"Thank you, Professor Harper," McGonagall replied. Luna stood next to Neville and me. McGonagall sat down and motioned for us to do the same. "Now, I need to check you three are okay. You are the only students who participated in the war and returned. You should know that I have informed the new professors of this and they will be looking out for you. I have made sure you're all in all the same classes together and I've given you an individual dormitory as a thank you for your bravery last year. Any questions?" She looked at us expectantly but no one said anything. "Okay then, Neville, Luna, you may go back to your dormitories."
"Thank you, Professor," they both muttered as they left.
"So Miss Granger, I wanted to speak with you," she looked at me but I said nothing. "You obviously went through some very difficult times last year, how are you feeling being back?"
"Fine," I lied. "I just want to get on with my NEWTs."
"Okay," she started. "How are the Weasleys?" She asked cautiously.
"They're fine. They're coping," I told her. In most cases this was true, except with Ron, but I didn't want to dwell on that.
"Okay, good. How's Potter getting on?" She asked. I just wanted to leave, but after how generous she had been with our dormitories I felt I had to carry on the conversation.
"He's good, he's hoping to become an auror," I said. I thought about mentioning that Ron was also hoping to follow the same career path but I decided against it as that might mean further conversation about him.
"Oh, that's great! How about Miss Weasley? What's she up to now?" She asked.
"She's trying to become a professional quidditch player," I was starting to get tired of the conversation and I think McGonagall could see this.
"Brilliant. Anyway, I'll let you go off to get some sleep, goodnight Miss Granger," she opened the door for me and I walked out after thanking her. When I got to the common room it was nearly empty except for the prefects and Neville. When he saw me he smiled and I smiled back.
"You alright?" He asked. I wish people would stop asking how I was and if I was okay. I just wanted to sleep.
"Yeah. I'm going to bed, where are our dormitories?" I asked Neville. He jumped up and led me along the corridor. He opened the door to my dormitory, which was only slightly smaller than the usual dormitories, which housed four students each. I couldn't believe I had all this space just for me. "Thanks Neville, see you tomorrow morning." With that I shut the door and dragged my trunk off of my bed. For now I just took my pyjamas and toothbrush out of it, I'd unpack the rest of my stuff tomorrow. I changed into my pyjamas and walked into the bathroom, where I brushed my teeth. I left my toothbrush in a cup in the shelf and went back into the bedroom. I drew all the curtains and got into my bed. I shut my eyes, but every time I did I saw Bellatrix. This happened often, but not so much when I was with Ron. I tried to sleep, but after an hour I decided to not bother. I dragged a book out of my trunk and read. It was a muggle book which my parents had bought for me soon after I restored their memories. It was a crime novel and it was actually quite gripping. Finally I felt my eyes forcing themselves shut. I put the book down and let my body rest.
"Hello Miss Granger," the dark figure said to me. I recognised the voice. It sent shivers down my spine but my mind simply wouldn't tell me whose voice it was. "You filthy little mudblood." It was Bellatrix. She pulled the hood off of her head to reveal her deranged expression and matted hair. I tried to scream but my throat was completely dry. Instead, I let out silent sobs as she performed the most painful spells on me. My body contorted and I felt like I had broken every bone in my body. I cried and cried and with every tear her cackles got even louder. Then, she suddenly stopped.She disappeared. Where was she now? Before I had time to work it out I felt something cold and metallic on my throat. "Didn't think I'd finished did you, mudblood?" I sobbed again. Her insane shrieking laugh echoed in my ears and rattled around in my head. I felt my head falling to the floor. Before I knew what was happening my head was on the floor and the knife was still attached to my neck like a magnet. I couldn't hear anything but her laughs. That horrible, deafening, evil laugh.
Thought I'd post this pretty short chapter quickly before bed. If anyone could give feedback that would be nice?