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Chapter 23: Chapter 23
Wow chapter 23...where did chapters 1-22 go? Can't believe how deep we are into the story now! Thanks so much for reading! I really appreciate it! Hope you enjoy...
Hermione was going bored out of her mind, it wasn’t that her parents weren’t great and all and she loved them with all her heart but they were always working. Then when they weren’t working they spent time watching T.V which would be okay except for the fact they watched a lot of documentaries about dentistry. These things which she once found fascinating but by now she knew more than anybody in the world ever needed to know about the ‘art’ of dentist work and perfection of teeth.
As bad as it was in a way she was thrilled after she heard that her aunt in New Zealand had broken her leg rendering her immobile so her parents were forced to jet over there meaning she would have to leave for the Burrow earlier than expected.
Her parents dropped her off in central London on their way to the airport where she made her way to the Leaky Cauldron and got into Diagon Alley. From there she flooed to the Burrow where she hoped it would be okay for her early arrival. She stepped out of the fire place coughing due to the soot and smiling as she entered the familiar surroundings of the Burrow.
“Hermione dear, you’re two weeks early,” Molly said rushing to greet her. She brushed down her clothes and hugged her.
“I’m so sorry Mrs. Weasley but my parents had to go to New Zealand, my aunt broke her leg and I hoped I could stay here. I wanted to contact you but obviously the post men probably wouldn’t recognise the address and I don’t own an owl.”
“Don’t be silly dear, you’re welcome here anytime,” she smiled warmly. “I’ve been making breakfast that lot aren’t even up yet. Just take your bags up to Ginny’s room as usual.”
Hermione tiptoed up the stairs into Ginny’s room placing her bags there and smiled at the sleeping red head looking forward to four weeks in the Burrow.
Hermione helped with breakfast before sitting down on a chair and reading her book.
“Mum, is Hermione here?” asked Ginny as she came down into the kitchen.
“Yes I’m here,” Hermione chimed from the living room.
“I woke up and saw your stuff ‘Mione,” she smiled and hugged her friend. “What are you doing here?”
“My aunt in New Zealand broke her leg and my parents had to fly over to help her,” Hermione explained.
“Okay, that means more time together,” Ginny grinned.
“I know I don’t know how I’ll survive an entire four weeks with you,” Hermione teased.
Ginny gave an overdramatic gasp, “you’ll pay for that one Granger,” she challenged.
There was thundering footsteps heard as someone sprinted down the stairs.
“Where’s Hermione?” a breathless voice panted out.
“Well good morning to you too, she’s in the living room,” Molly said.
“Hermione!” George exclaimed running to hug her, he picked her up and spun her around.
“I didn’t think you were coming for another couple weeks?” he stated though it was more of a question.
“I wasn’t but my aunt in New Zealand broke her leg and my parents had to leave to look after her,” she explained.
“That’s great,” he grinned and both girls gave him quizzical looks. “No not that she broke her leg I mean- you know I want her to get better but I err I...I just meant we’ll have more time to spend,” he gave a fake cough, “together.”
“I know what you meant,” Hermione smiled.
“Why don’t you come with us today, we were all planning on starting to do up the shop. I think we have enough stock to cover the shelves but we’re going to need some tidy up time obviously,” George said.
“Yeah that sounds great,” she said happily.
“It’s going to be way better now that you’re here,” he said with a small smile as he looked into her eyes. She blushed and looked at her shoes.
“Thanks,” she smiled her eyes flicking back to his and she held his gaze.
They stayed like that for what seemed like a lifetime, so close they were almost touching, eyes locked on the others and every thought in both of their minds completely devoted to the other for the moment. It was such an intense moment one of the very few times when you can almost picture the others’ thoughts and can feel their emotions radiating from them.
“Hermione,” he said softly. “I missed you so much.”
“I missed you more,” she whispered gently.
“That’s a lie,” he laughed.
“I don’t lie George Weasley, I’m an honest, genuine person and you know it,” she said prodding him in the chest with playful accusation.
“Fine but that was an exaggeration of the truth because I missed you more,” George said.
“Okay if you two are going to be all,” Ginny paused waving her arm between them, “like that then at least give me some warning because I need to get far away,” she joked.
They both blushed deeply but smiled at each other all the same.
George cleared his throat breaking the daze he’d been in and looked to his sister innocently, “no idea what you’re talking about Gin.”
“No of course you don’t because you’re as clueless as each other, or at least you pretend to be,” Ginny said.
“Ginny,” Hermione hissed at her as pink flooded into her face.
“Sorry Hermione,” Ginny said quickly realising she was becoming embarrassed.
“George go wake your twin, Ron and Harry!” Molly’s voice yelled from the kitchen.
“Oh I’ll wake Harry!” Ginny said excitedly then looked mortified and covered her mouth with both hands. “A-And Ron obviously,” she stammered turning the same colour as her hair.
“Whatever everyone knows you fancy Potter,” George said, “might as well get Fred up whilst you’re at it.”
“Not a secret who you fancy either is it Georgie?” Ginny shot at him throwing Hermione an apologetic look as she suddenly appeared to have the urge to hide under the chair.
“I know that,” George said glancing to his side at Hermione who was avoiding eye contact at all cost. Ginny left to wake everyone and George and Hermione spent a few minutes catching up. George had them both in fits of laughter within seconds.
“Anyways it really would be great for you to come down to the shop, we can always use some advice and who better to get it from than my little brain box?” George grinned.
“Little? I suppose. Brain box? Maybe. But you just remember I can be highly dangerous,” she threatened him playfully.
“I don’t doubt that for a second but come on dangerous bookworm versus Weasley twin, it’s kind of obvious who wins,” he teased.
“Well it’s definitely obvious that you’re the loser,” Hermione smirked.
“Granger, I know you are extremely close to George Weasley whose effortless good looks and endless charm can be overwhelming but you’re a genius not delusional so you cannot tell me you really believe you can beat me.”
“I don’t believe anything of the sort, I know for certain I would win.”
“Fair enough but nobody would ever want to fight me after all no one can resist me, I’m just too good,” he said over confidently brushing invisible dust off his shoulder.
“Yes the raw magnetism of a Weasley twin, I’m just no match,” she said sarcastically.
“You use that tone but I know it just means every word of what you said was the truth,” he teased pulling her into a hug.
“By raw magnetism I mean strong arms that pull you in and don’t let you go, plus very inviting warmth,” she grinned against his chest.
“My arms aren’t that strong I mean I know my body is like perfectly sculpted but really they seem that much stronger because of how much stronger I am than you,” he joked.
“Let me get my wand and I will show you the difference between strength and weakness,” she threatened.
“Uh-oh is Granger going to attack me?” he said in mock fear.
“George Weasley leave that poor girl alone and come and eat some breakfast. You too Hermione dear,” Mrs. Weasley called.
They walked into the kitchen and everyone greeted Hermione.
After breakfast everyone went to their rooms to get ready, Hermione sat and talked with Ginny as she dressed.
“So, you and George -four weeks. You thinking what I’m thinking?”
“I’d love to think that way but it’s just the same problem isn’t it? I’m going to be at Hogwarts and he’s going to be hundreds of miles away and a long distance relationship is a lot of work on both parts. I just don’t want to jeopardise a serious relationship we could have in the future for something that might just put a strain on our bond and ruin our trust.”
“So basically you’re going to keep putting it off until the inevitable happens and you end up together?”
“Inevitable? What you really think we’re destined to be together? Because I think that is a very comforting thought,” Hermione said in a daze.
“You’re missing the point if you’re going to end up together anyway then there’s no time like the present,” Ginny said.
“Well if there’s no time like the present why don’t you go ask Harry out right now?” Hermione asked making her point.
“That’s different...” Ginny protested.
“No it really isn’t Ginny it’s the exact same principal to be honest,” Hermione told her.
“I suppose,” Ginny shrugged, “sorry I’ll get off your back about it-it’s just I hate seeing you so upset.”
“But the thing is I’m not upset anymore in fact this is the best time of my life, four weeks surrounded by you guys. It couldn’t get better,” Hermione smiled.
“That is one of the reasons I respect you most Hermione, you make a negative a positive,” Ginny said and hugged her friend.
“Girls we’re going,” George said arriving in the door way.
“Be down in a sec, Fred,” Hermione said.
George’s eyes widened and a look of horror mixed with sadness settled on his face a frown growing on his usually smiling lips. “I-I’m George,” he said unsurely. Hermione could always tell them apart which he always put down to her fondness of himself but maybe not. He felt his heart drop.
Hermione couldn’t help smiling at his reaction torn between laughter and apologising. He seemed genuinely upset and confused and she felt the strong sympathy as she watched his face fall.
“Got you,” she smirked and she watched George carefully practically seeing the wheels turn until it clicked.
“You knew? It was just a joke,” he choked.
“George I could tell you apart from a mile away,” she said rolling her eyes as his eyes brightened and his usual grin replaced the frown.
“I was worried then you know,” he admitted. “I really thought you’d mistaken us, not bad Granger.”
“Thank you and I know you believed it, I watched you face drop,” she teased.
“My face didn’t drop I was just kind of disappointed,” George said trying to regain his cool.
“Whatever you say George, anything to keep your dignity it tact,” she laughed as she and Ginny followed him down the stairs.
Let’s go,” said Fred grabbing George’s arm.
“Freddie the kiddies can’t apparate,” George joked.
“Oh yeah, you guys use the floo network and we’ll meet you there. Remember ninety-three Diagon Alley, okay?” Fred told them.
“Yes,” they all replied and with a crack the twins had gone. A little while later they found themselves inside the dusty, old building that was soon to be Weasleys Wizard Wheezes.
“Get to work guys,” Fred exclaimed as everyone began to dust, sweep and patch up areas fitting in a few shelves as they went along. Fred and George who were of age did most work quickly using their wands to do different things but it still took a while and even by six pm that evening there was still a lot of work to be done. Everyone was exhausted from the work so they all decided it was a good time to head back to the Burrow.
When they got in Mrs. Weasley was cooking dinner so everyone left to their rooms where they cleaned up as they were covered in dust and dirt from their work. Hermione and Ginny spent a while resting in the room when Hermione thought she would go see Harry and Ron having not spoke to either of them properly since she’d arrived. She stopped outside the bedroom door and raised her fist to knock but overhearing their conversation paused.
“I don’t know Harry I just really fancy her,” Ron said. Hermione smiled wondering who he was talking about and curiosity getting the better of her she lowered her hand and stood there listening to the voices.
“To be honest I always thought you really liked Hermione,” Harry’s voice floated through the door and Hermione stifled a laugh. They were best friends, nothing more.
“No way. I mean don’t get me wrong Hermione’s great and all but I love her as a sister, nothing more. Plus she’s such a know-it-all, a bookworm and she’s just boring,” Ron said.
‘Ouch’ Hermione thought ‘words cut deep, that hurt.’ Tears started to sting her eyes.
“Not to mention how serious she is all the time and she’s not exactly pretty or anything is she,” Ron went on.
Hermione began to sob but she waited to hear Harry’s response.
“Well that’s a bit harsh, she’s smart and she’s not boring really. She’s quite interesting but you just need to listen to her really and yeah she’s mature but she’s just trying to stop us doing something stupid or dangerous. And she’s not bad looking at all don’t you remember the Yule Ball? She looked amazing plus it’s not about what’s on the outside is it?” Harry defended her which Hermione appreciated a lot but she didn’t want to confront Ron though his words hurt her all the same and she couldn’t help crying.
She broke into a run down the stairs in an attempt to reach the room she shared with Ginny without breaking down completely but blinded by tears she hit into George at full speed. Both of them ended up on the floor.
“Where are you going in such a rush ‘Mione?” George asked then looked at her properly, “Hermione what’s wrong? Why are you crying?” This only proved to make her cry harder and George lead her to his room sitting down on his bed with her.
He hugged her to himself tightly whispering gently to her that she was okay and he had her. When she calmed herself he started to speak.
“What happened?” he asked her softly whilst playing with her hair.
Hermione explained that she’d been about to knock when she heard their conversation and stopped.
“Well what did Ron say?” he asked.
“That I was a know-it-all...”
“You’re incredibly smart.”
“You’re unique and I find you fascinating.”
“I’m too serious...”
“You’re sensible but you always know how to have a good time you just need someone who will share it with you like me.”
“I’m not pretty...”
“I agree,” George shrugged. Hermione looked at him in horror and sadness.
“George how could you? How dare you? You-You...” Hermione was cut off.
“You didn’t let me finish,” he said gently. “I agree you’re not pretty, you’re completely beautiful.”
“George,” she breathed smiling as she threw her arms around his neck. “Do you mean it?” she asked him.
“Of course I do ‘Mione, you’re gorgeous,” he grinned as he returned the hug.
“Thank you George,” she whispered. “You always know what to say.”
“Don’t pay attention to Ron, he’s jealous because he’s thick and you’re a genius. You’d be better off having a conversation with a brick wall than with him so seriously don’t worry about it,” George told her.
“Dinner,” Molly’s voice echoed throughout the house.
“Come on food,” he said grabbing her hand and leading her down.
The day went on rather uneventful though Hermione found herself throwing cold glares in Ron’s direction all evening and he gave her a small smile each time but it was a scared smile that meant he was cringing on the inside. Nobody wanted to be on Hermione’s bad side, one she could be very sensitive, two she was very talented with hexes. Ron wasn’t certain what he’d done wrong but he could already tell it wasn’t good.
So what did you think? You already know what I'm going to ask so let's make this short...review PLEASE! Thanks for reading everyone! Jenna :)