Unofficial Portkey Archive

But I Really Love You by DarthMittens

But I Really Love You


A/N: Fun little plot bunny that wouldn't leave me alone.

One-shot. Enjoy!

But I Really Love You

November 7, 1996

Hermione Granger. 17-year-old braniac, Gryffindor Prefect, and loyal friend. And the woman that I was completely and utterly in love with.

The attraction had started when I saw her at the Yule Ball, and I had discovered that I was in love with her just this past summer-every second at the Dursleys', I kept seeing her fall limply to the floor in the Department of Mysteries.

There was only one teensie problem.

I was in love with her, but her attention seemed solely fixed on my other best friend, Ronald Weasley.

My name is Harry Potter, a.k.a. the boy-who-lived or the Chosen One. This is my pathetic, sad, happy, unbelievable story about what I did in the name of love.

I was sitting by the common room fire by myself-Ron was off snogging Lavender somewhere and Hermione was upstairs in her dorm. I was trying to work on homework, which wasn't going too well. Just last night Ron and Lavender had gotten together, and it had made Hermione very upset, which in turn made me feel depressed and lonely because the woman I was in love with liked another bloke.

Sighing in frustration, I threw my quill against my parchment.

"Harry?" I looked up to see the most beautiful woman in the world sit in the chair next to mine. "What's the matter?"

"What? Oh…nothing. Just…angry about the amount of homework all the teachers are giving us," I lied.

"I see," said Hermione, trying to hide a smile and sounding amused. "Can I ask you a favor?"

"Anything," I said quickly and earnestly.

A cute pink tinge crept up her cheeks. "Um…I want you to help me…" she muttered, uncharacteristically flustered, "…make Ron jealous."

My insides turned to ice. "Oh…how?" I heard myself ask from far away.

"Well, he's always been jealous of you. I wanted to know if you'd…um…" her face was crimson now, "…pretend to be my boyfriend, just when Ron's around?" she finished quickly.

Talk about kicking me when I was down. I tried to keep my face from showing the pain that I was feeling, and said hollowly, "Yeah…anything." Because I would do anything for her.

Hermione let out the breath she had been holding and smiled. "Thanks."

"No problem," I replied as I hastily rearranged the papers on the table in front of me to finally allow myself to grimace.

"You know," said Hermione as she stood up, "you're a really good friend, Harry." She disappeared upstairs, and I let my head fall back and didn't bother to wipe away the tears collecting in my eyes.

Not only was my love for Hermione unrequited, now I was going to help her win the love of my best friend! Could I be any more pathetic?

Suddenly, someone sat in my lap, and my eyes shot open to find a wild mane of bushy brown hair in front of them. "H-Hermione?" I stuttered. "What are you doing?"

"Ron could come back at any second," she said as if it were the most obvious thing in the world, a book in her hand. "We have to do this all the way if it's going to work."

She shifted on my lap and laid back against my chest as she started reading her book, and I smiled as a warm, fuzzy feeling spread out from my heart.

Then I frowned. This was a lie, a sham, I shouldn't have been getting warm fuzzy feelings. None of this was real, I told myself, and the nice feeling was replaced by a dull ache in my heart.

I beat down the rising pain and sadness-I needed to focus on helping Hermione. So I pretended it was real. I let the warm fuzzy feeling engulf me again, and let myself believe that this was all true-that the love of my life was really sitting on my lap and loved me.

"What are you reading?" I asked Hermione.

The portrait hole opened before she could answer, and Ron and Lavender came in, holding hands. Before I knew what was happening, Hermione's arms were around my neck and her soft, warm, delicious lips were pressed against mine. My arms made their way around her back as I kissed back, my heart soaring and shriveling at the same time (quite an odd feeling). I was finally kissing the girl of my dreams…but it was all because of…

"What the bloody hell is going on here!" asked a livid-looking Ron, Lavender staring at him with admiration in her eyes, oblivious to the goings-on around her.

"What?" I scoffed. "I'm kissing the most beautiful, intelligent, and fun witch I know," I said sincerely. "Is that a crime?" I asked coolly.

Ron was glaring daggers at me, and I knew our friendship was going to take a blow because of this. But I didn't care-like I said: I'd do anything to see Hermione smile. "No," he said through clenched teeth. "I'll just be…going," he said before dragging Lavender back out of the common room with him.

Hermione shifted so she could see my face and beamed at me. "Thanks, Harry. That was great-you really made him jealous. Did you see his face?" she laughed. "And, erm, thanks for not freaking out when I kissed you, that kinda would've ruined it."

"All the way, right?" My beaming smile was a mask for the building pain in my chestal area.

"Right," she smiled back at me. "You'll be my 'date' for Hogsmeade tomorrow, right?"

If only you knew how much I want you to say date without the imaginary quotation marks, I thought sadly. "Of course," I managed to say cheerily.

She stood up, and my chest and lap felt very cold. "Well, I'm getting pretty tired," said Hermione through a yawn. "Good night, Harry."

"'Night, 'Mione," I called to her retreating back.

I sighed and slouched in my armchair, then mentally cursed the Fates, who were probably laughing their asses off at me right now. I would've laughed at me too, but I didn't really feel like it considering the fact that I was me.

"I'm a masochist," I muttered to myself angrily as I walked up to my room to go to bed.

The next morning, I woke up early, smiling at the thought of spending all day in Hogsmeade alone with Hermione. Then I groaned into my pillow as I remembered that this wasn't reality. Because I, Harry Potter, am not allowed to lead a life that isn't completely miserable.

Ron and I sat up in our beds at the same time to start our day, and I grinned at him. "Ready for a day in Hogsmeade with our girlfriends?" Ron just grunted as he began getting ready, and I decided to lay it on thick. "Hermione's mouth tastes great, Ron-a pumpkiny vanilla. And there's this spot just below her ear…" I made up, trying to make him as jealous as possible.

"Shut up, Harry," growled Ron.

"What?" I asked with feigned innocence. "Don't you want to talk about how amazing Lavender is?"

Ron huffed like a petulant five-year-old and stomped out of the dormitory. In all actuality, that made me feel even worse. I must've been a pretty crappy prospective boyfriend if smart, intelligent Hermione would choose that over me. I grimaced as I finished putting on my clothes, then went down to join my 'girlfriend'.

When I got down to the common room, Hermione arched an eyebrow at me. "Why was Ron so angry?"

I shrugged and said, "Made him jealous again."

Hermione beamed at me. "Thanks, Harry. At this rate he'll come to his sense in no time."

My heart fell. This may have all been fake, but I wanted it to last forever. "You ready for Hogsmeade?" I asked with mock cheerfulness.

Hermione narrowed her eyes shrewdly at me, and my heart skipped a beat. Does she know…no, that can't be possible! I relaxed when she smiled. "Yep!"

We took a carriage down to Hogsmeade and went to the Three Broomsticks, where we sat at the table next to Ron and Lavender's-Ron stiffened visibly. I held out Hermione's chair for her, and she gave my cheek a quick peck before sitting down. I sat down opposite her, and Madam Rosmerta brought us our usual.

As we were eating, chatting about whatever, Hermione got some food on her face. I leaned over the table and caressed her cheek as I rubbed the food off with my thumb…and Ron reacted quite well.

He stood up and shouted at Lavender, who was walking about how horrible Professor Snape was, "We're leaving!" He grabbed her hand and practically dragged her out of the Three Broomsticks.

My hand was still on Hermione's soft, smooth cheek, and she was looking at me with a curious expression on her face. Once I realized what I was doing, I quickly withdrew my hand and we ate the rest of our meal in a semi-awkward silence.

We spent the rest of our time in Hogsmeade visiting all the shops, occasionally snogging whenever we crossed paths with Ron and Lavender.

That night in the dormitory, I had just finished changing into my pajamas when Ron came in. We were alone, and Ron said, "How could you, Harry?"

I furrowed my eyebrows. "Er…how could I what?"

"You know bloody well what," Ron said angrily. "You know that I like Hermione. Why'd you have to go and steal what's mine?" he growled.

"Steal what's yours?" I asked with sincere incredulity. "She's never belonged to you-to anybody, for that matter. She can be with whoever she wants to be with. And you're with Lavender, you idiot. You think Hermione's going to want to snog you or be with you when you're snogging Lavender? She chose me, Ron. I beat you again," I sneered at him, that last sentence only half an act.

Ron stormed out of the room, face bright red from anger.

Over the next week, I played the perfect boyfriend for Hermione, dreading every passing moment because I knew this was getting close to ending. We kept snogging whenever Ron was around, and each time I kissed her like it would be my last…because it very well could've been.

My heart was constantly throbbing, the knowledge that this was all fake torturing me. Sometimes Hermione would study me as if I was a problem she was trying to solve, and frankly it kind of creeped me out. She had never looked at me like that before, and I didn't know what it was all about.

On the Saturday after the Hogsmeade trip, Hermione and I were sitting in the common room studying. I was studying Transfiguration, and Hermione was studying me again. I couldn't take it anymore-I had to know why she was looking at me like that. "Do you need something, Hermione?" I asked, looking up at her.

My voice seemed to chock her out of her thoughts, for she shook her head, blushed, and said, "Huh? Oh…um…no?, I'm fine."

"Why do you keep looking at me like that?" I asked bluntly.

"Keep looking at you like what? I don't know what you're…" she trailed off at the skeptical look on my face. She took a deep breath, then said, "Fine. I want to tell you something important."

"What is it?" I asked.

A cut blush tinged her pale cheeks pink, and she said, "I…I…over this past week…I…I've never really been-"

"FINE!" Interrupted a scream from Lavender Brown, who had just entered the common room with a scared-looking Ron in her wake. "SCREW YOU, RONALD WEASLEY! I BREAK UP WITH YOU!"

She dashed upstairs crying, and Ron glared at me angrily before stomping up the boys' stairs. My heart wilted and I couldn't keep the bitterness out of my voice as I said, "There you go, Hermione. Dream come true."

Hermione looked at me with hurt evident in her eyes. "Yeah…dream come true," she said quietly.

I regained my composure, even though I just wanted to scream and cry and break everything in sight. I forced a strained smile on my face that probably looked more like a grimace and said, "Your brilliant plan worked. Now Ron can be all yours." I hated myself more with every word.

Hermione stood up and came by the arm of the armchair I was sitting in. "Harry? Are-"

I couldn't take it anymore. "Go! Just…go to Ron," I said, breathing heavily. I didn't want her to see my cry.

Hermione stared at me in shock for a moment, then said, "Are you sure you don't want to tell me something?" Her tone was hopeful, as were her eyes.

"Er…I hope you have a good time with Ron?" What else was I supposed to say?

Hermione's face fell, which absolutely confused me. "Thanks," she whispered before going up the boys' stairs.

My throat and eyes were burning, and I let my head fall back so I was looking at the ceiling. I closed my eyes to stop the tears coming out. I shouldn't have been close to crying-I knew in the end that this was how it was going to be. I cleared the path to happiness for Hermione with Ron, leaving myself miserable. I would become the third wheel of the trio and have to watch Ron and Hermione be happy and lovey-dovey with each other. I was absolutely pathetic. My life was just one huge train wreck.

I sat there like that for a short time, waging a war against my tears, which were threatening to escape the confines of my eyes. My heart literally hurt-it was being stabbed by the white-hot knives of that life-wrecking bitch called love.

After only a couple minutes after Hermione disappeared up the stairs, a pair of soft, warm, delicious, and…familiar lips pressed against mine. My eyes shot open and I broke the kiss, shocked. I must've been completely drowning in my own misery to have not noticed Hermione's return, for she was sitting on my lap, straddling my thighs. "Hermione? Wha-"

"Harry," she said softly, cutting me off. "I said 'do you want to tell me something?'"

Our faces were inches apart and I could see every beautiful fleck of gold in Hermione's chocolate eyes. But what the hell is going on here! my mind screamed at me. Suddenly, Hermione's eyes filled with tears, and she started crying and hugged me, burying her face in the crook of my neck. "Hermione, what's wrong?"

"I'm sorry, Harry," said softly and thickly through her sobs. "I shouldn't have-you're going to hate me."

"Hermione," I said soothingly, hugging her tighter. "I could never hate you. Why would you think that?"

"I…I…I've been lying to you this whole time!" she wailed. "I wasn't trying to make Ron jealous, I was trying to make you jealous so you'd fall in love with me!"

"W-what?" I choked out, bewildered and delighted.

"I thought that if you were kissing me and pretending to be my boyfriend, you might actually fall for me! I've loved you since third year, and I didn't want to wait anymore! I've lied to you, and I've ruined our friendship! I was wrong, how could I think that you would ever love me! Please, please, please don't hate-mmph!"

I had pressed my lips to Hermione's, effectively shutting her up. This time she broke the kiss, shocked and no longer crying. "Harry? What?"

"You didn't need to try and make me jealous," I told her, smiling. "I've been in love with you since the summer. I was doing whatever I could to make you happy, even if it meant giving you up to…Ron. You don't even know how much this last week has been killing me."

Hermione let out a choked laugh. "Harry, how could you think I would ever like him? We'd kill each other within ten minutes of getting together!"

"But then…why were you so upset when Ron was kissing Lavender?"

"I don't really know," she said, pouting cutely. "I guess…I don't know…Ron had somebody, you could have the choice of any female in the wizarding world, and I…I would…end up with nobody," she finished quietly.

"Well, Hermione," I said, smiling quirkily at her. "You won't have to worry about that ever again, because you'll always have me."

She smiled at me, then leaned in and kissed me sweetly. It was 100 times better now that I knew that this wasn't fake. "I love you, Harry," she sighed against my lips.

"I love you too, Hermione," I breathed back.

We kissed again, and didn't make it up to bed until 2 in the morning.

And then, once in bed, I thanked the Fates for my amazing life.

A/N: There it is. Hope you liked it!

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