Chapter 1 : “WHY? BECAUSE I HAVE AN EMOTIONAL RANGE OF A TEASPOON?"
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“But, Hermione, I didn’t know it was your letter, did I? Because if I knew it was your letter I wouldn’t have READ IT!”
“Oh, you didn’t know who the letter was for; I am ever so sorry Ron that explains everything. Although, I would have thought that the ‘dear Hermione’ at the top of the letter might’ve been a DEAD GIVE AWAY!”
It was a fine day at the Burrow. Harry and Ginny were back together and The Weasleys (with the exception of Bill and fleur who were on their Honeymoon) and Harry were sitting around the Weasley table after enjoying a delicious meal, cooked by Mrs Weasley.
However, Ron and Hermione were having, yet another, row. Fred, George and Ginny were grinning broadly as they always found Ron and Hermione’s arguments to be great entertainment. Harry looked extremely annoyed, as Charlie rolled his eyes also grinning slightly and Mr and Mrs Weasley exchanged knowing smiles. Neither of them said a word because if there was one thing they knew about Ron and Hermione’s rows it was to not get involved.
“Well I obviously knew whose it was then, and I put it straight down.” Ron shouted.
“You put it down did you? Well if you ‘put it down’ then how, may I ask, DID YOU KNOW IT WAS FROM VICTOR?” Screamed Hermione, getting lauder and lauder by every word.
“Well I- see what- he- what was he doing writing to you anyway?”
“He’s my friend, Ronald, are you familiar with the term friendship or should I explain it to you. YOU DON’T GET UPSET WHEN HARRY SENDS ME LETTERS!” Hermione shot back.
“Well HARRY is trustworthy, HARRY won’t use you, HARRY isn’t three years older than you and HARRY ISN’T A DEATH EATER!” Ron said pointing at Harry every time his name was mentioned.
“VICTOR IS NOT A DEATH EATER.”
“How would you know? He’s from Durmstrang, off course he’s a death eater.”
“WAS from Durmstrang, WAS. Even then he admitted to liking Hogwarts better.” Hermione said.
“He still went there. Then again I should have known you’d stick up for Vickie, after all he is your boyfriend!” Ron replied.
“HE IS NOT MY BOYFRIEND AND HIS NAME IS VICTOR!”
By this time Fred and George were laughing and so was Charlie.
“Members OF THE OPPOSITE SEX can just be friends you know like Harry and me and like you and me! I don’t have to be madly in love with all my friends who are boys or I’ll have about twenty boyfriends. Why do you hate Victor anyway? You used to worship him and it’s like ever since I went with him to the Yule ball you’ve hated his guts. What changed?”
“People change- I change. I’m just worried he’ll use you!”
“WHY BECAUSE I AM INCAPABLE OF HAVING A FRIEND, I’M A FILFY LITTLE MUDBLOOD, LIKE MALFOY ALWAYS SAYS, IS THAT WHY?”
“What? No of course not-”
“Hermione he didn’t say that.” Harry and Ginny said in unison.
“NO BUT THAT’S WHAT HE MENT! WELL GUESS WHAT, RONALD, IT MAY COME AS A SHOCK BUT MY WORLD DOESN’T EVOLVE AROUND YOU! YOU’RE NOT MY FATHER AND YOU CAN’T TELL ME WHAT TO DO, MUDBLOOD, IN YOUR EYES OR NOT!”
“Please ‘mione don’t say that word-”
Ron was getting angrier, his face and ears were getting so red that his red hair and freckles blended in perfectly.
“WHAT IS IT ABOUT VICTOR? WHY DO YOU HATE HIM SO MUCH?” Hermione screamed.
“WELL WHY DO YOU LIKE HIM SO MUCH?”
“He’s nice, honest, treats me with respect, he sees past my bushy brown hair and cleverness AND HE ACTUALLY LISTENS TO ME! Now tell me why you hate him?”
“I’M JUST AFRAID HE’LL HURT YOU!”
“I KNOW THERE’S MORE TO IT THAN THAT!”
“THERE ISN’T!” Why wouldn’t Hermione just let it go?
“YES I KNOW THERE IS, WHY DON’T YOU LIKE HIM? WHAT IS IT ABOUT VICKTOR, THAT YOU CAN’’T STAND TO EVEN HEAR HIS NAME? WHAT HAS HE EVER DONE TO MAKE YOU HATE HIM THIS MUCH?”
“I just hate it- I hate what he’s doing to you- I just hate him.” Ron said, looking more angry and frustrated than he ever had done. He just wanted Hermione to stop- to end the argument.
“YOU HATE VICTOR, SCHOOL, HOMEWORK, READING, HOUSE ELVES, IS THERE ANYTHING YOU DON’T HATE, RONALD.” Ron didn’t reply so Hermione continued, “WELL IS THERE?”
Hermione looked startled and upset was he really saying what she thought he was saying? Did Ron hate her?
“What you hate me?” she choked.
“NO, MISS-LETS-TWIST-IT-ALL, I’M IN LOVE WITH YOU.”
Silence. Hermione began to breathe heavily as though exhausted by all the shouting, Ron covered his mouth as Harry, Ginny, Charlie Fred and George’s mouths hung open. Mr Weasley stopped eating his food and Mrs Weasley dropped a pile of plates onto the floor.
Did it really happen? Did Ronald Weasley just admit to being in love with Hermione Granger after six years of hiding it?
Hermione seemed to recover first, and said looking rather pail,
“You can’t- you’re not- love- love is a big thing- you can’t possibly be-”
“In love with you?” Suggested Ron.
“You’re confused- angry- love is a big thing to feel, you don’t even know what love is!” Hermione began to shake her head, he couldn’t love her- there was nothing to love- why would someone like him like someone like her?
“WHY? BECAUSE I HAVE AN EMOTIONAL RANGE OF A TEASPOON? I HAVE NO FEELING IS THAT IT?”
“No Ron, I-”
“WHAT IS IT ABOUT ME? WHAT IS IT YOU CAN’T STAND?”
“Nothing Ron I-”
“I don't understand you, what ever i do goes wrong or isn't good enough! I TRY MY HARDEST TO MAKE YOU HAPPY BUT YOU CAN’T EVEN SEE IT, AND EVEN NOW, WHEN I HAVE ADMITTED IT TO YOU, YOU STILL REFUSE TO BELIEVE ME!”
“Ron, I think I’m-”
“ I’VE BEEN TRYING TO IGNORE IT, BUT I CAN’T. I’VE BEEN TRYING TO TELL YOU FOR YEARS BUT EVERY TIME I COME CLOSE I GET SCARED AND START AN ARGUMENT AND WALK AWAY- AND WHEN I HAVE GOT THE COURAGE, SOMEONE INTERRUPTS AND I CAN’T TAKE IT ANYMORE. IT’S MESSING ME UP AND I CAN’T GET RID OF WHATS EATING ME UP INSIDE! I LOVE YOU HERMIONE, I ALWAYS HAVE AND ALWAYS WILL DO, AND DO YOU KNOW WHAT? I MUST HAVE BEEN BLOODY MAD TO FALL IN LOVE WITH YOU!” and with that he marched out of the room slamming the door behind him.
Everyone stared at Hermione as silent tears began to roll down her cheek.
“Oh he’s impossible- if he just- if he waited- I could’ve told him that I- oh never mind.” She sobbed once again and then she disaparated from the kitchen and then there was an uncomfortable silence.
“Well that went well.” Fred said finally.
“It only took him six years, one month, two weeks, four days, seven hours, ten minutes and three point four seconds but he’s finally admitted it.” George agreed.
“You counted?” Harry said, gapping at the Twins.
“Well duh!” they said in unison.
“He’s our brother-”
“We know love when we see it-”
“And if it wasn’t love in the second year-”
“Then forth year was a-”
“Dead give away.” Fred finished. Turning to his twin brother he asked, “So how much money have we made George?”
George waved his wand and after a small pop a blue, note book appeared out of no where.
“Why, I think we are two hundred and fifty galleons, twenty sickles and three Knuts richer than we were yesterday, Fred.” and the note book disappeared.
“Talking of which, Ginny-”
“You owe us-”
“Ten Galleons!” they both said together, as their grins broadened.
Ginny, who had been drinking, screwed up her face looking puzzled for a moment and then with realization of what they were talking about she smiled and Harry’s heart did a summersault.
“No, YOU owe ME ten galleons.”
“No I think you’ll find, little sister, that YOU said, Hermione would admit it first-”
“Where as WE said, Ron would snap under the pressure.”
Ginny looked defeated and muttered ‘fine’, when something in Harry’s head clicked…
“Wait a minute- hold on- so let me get this straight, people are betting on their relationship?”
“Well you see Harry, everyone knows they’re made for each other and they are the hottest couple that Hogwarts has ever seen and the most frustrating, and all this lets-make-everything-into-an-argument stuff is driving everyone around the bend!” Ginny answered.
“To right it does, even something as romantic as telling someone you love them gets turned into a row.” Charlie Added.
“Yes Charlie, but do you really think Ron meant it to come out like that?” Mr Weasley said, whilst Mrs Weasley muttered ‘repairo’ and the shattered plates mended.
“Well no but-” Charlie began.
“Look he was angry with Hermione and he couldn’t stand her thinking he didn’t care- he just wanted her stop- so he blurted it out accidentally- Then he panicked- he couldn’t believe what he said- and escaped the only way he knew how- to start an argument.” Mrs Weasley said in a know-it-all tone.
“Yes Molly, but Hermione was right being in love is a big thing to feel- they’re just words- but does he mean them?” Mr Weasley replied.
“I think so.” Mrs Weasley said, “It came from the heart after all and I think if Hermione’s initially truthful she does to- I mean when I see them together- they fit- they just belong together.” At this point Ginny got up said ‘Goodnight’ and left the room, saying that she had to go and see if Hermione was ok.
“Maybe I should go after him.” Harry said, after a moment, looking at the door, FROM WHERE Ginny had just exited.
“There’s no point, Harry, he’ll just be asleep with his too-laud-to-be-real snoring, best to wait until tomorrow. He’ll be down here come breakfast, you mark my words; if I know my son, and I do, he won’t miss breakfast. He has never mist a meal, not once, not even as a boy when he had Dragon pox.” Mrs Weasley insisted.
Mr Weasley gave a long yarn and then glanced at his watch.
“Good god, is that the time?” He said suddenly, causing Charlie to jump, almost, three feet in to the air. “You all better get some sleep.”
“No, don’t you mean Harry needs to get some sleep?” George asked.
“No, George all of you need to.” Mr Weasley replied.
“Well, technically, dad-”
“We’re of age-”
“So you can’t tell us-”
“When to go to bed.” George finished.
“Well, genetically, boys, he is your father and me your mother and, financially, this is our house. OF AGE OR NOT, YOU OBEY OUR RULES, DO I MAKE MYSELF CLEAR?” Mrs Weasley shouted as they both nodded.
“Goodnight, Mrs Weasley, goodnight Mr Weasley.” Harry said once the shouting had stopped.
“Oh goodnight, Harry dear, see you in the morning.” Mrs Weasley smiled as though the argument with Fred and George hadn’t happened.
Harry walked up the rickety, zigzag staircase, up to the top floor and into Ron’s bedroom and as Mrs Weasley predicted Ron appeared to be sleeping with his to-laud-to-be-real snoring.
Harry awoke the next morning feeling happier than he had felt for a long time.
Ever since Sirius had died, Harry found it hard to laugh and when Dumbledore died it was, almost, impossible. It was like one death after another and most of them were the people Harry cared about the most. However today was different Ron had finally admitted his feelings for Hermione, they’re bound to get together, he thought, it was inevitable. If he couldn’t be happy at least his best friends could be and if he dies- when he dies- he wants to know they’ll look after each other.
Rubbing his eyes, Harry got up and put on his glasses. He turned his head and as he saw Ron the happy feeling, that he had, only, experienced moments ago, had vanished.
Ron was sitting at the end of his bed, bags under his eyes whilst he rocked back and forth. His legs were crossed and he gazed, determinedly at the radiator, he didn’t even blink. His face was expressionless and he clearly hadn’t slept at all last night. However, the thing that worried Harry the most was the way he was muttering to himself as though he thought no one could hear him. Ron reminded Harry of Kreacher, his house elf.
After watching Ron for a couple of minutes, Harry decided it was best to talk to him.
“Ron, mate, are you ok?” Harry asked, climbing out of his bed and walking over to him.
As he got closer Harry managed to hear some of the things he was muttering, things like ‘I’m so thick- stupid- what possessed me?’, ‘Ruined- everything ruined.’
“Ron, breakfast will be ready- they’ll be waiting for us.” Ron mealy continued to gaze at the radiator as he rocked and muttered.
Harry was getting more and more worried by the second, why wouldn’t Ron move like Mrs Weasley had said yesterday?
“Ron, talk to me please.” But still he didn’t appear to be listening. “Come on Ron, it’s me, Harry- you’re best mate.” Harry pleaded but Ron didn’t even blink.
“Ron, I know you’re upset about Hermione but she loves you, I know she does, just give it time- she just needs to get over the shock. Please Ron, just come down to breakfast and it’ll all work out, I promise it will but it won’t if you hide up here!” Ron just sat there and his expression didn’t change.
Harry gave up, he just needs time to cool of, Harry thought, he’ll be ok come lunch; with that thought, Harry walked out of the room, knowing that Mrs Weasley’s final prediction was wrong.
As Harry walked down the hallway, he stopped before entering the kitchen.
He could see everyone from where he was and everything seemed to be normal. Mrs Weasley was rushing around the kitchen, Fred and George was telling Ginny about their new product ‘Fake it’. Mr Weasley was eating away and discussing work and Charlie had gone back to Romania. The only difference was that Hermione, who was normally Happy and jolly during her stay at the Burrow, wore the same expressionless face that Harry had seen on Ron. She was playing with her cereal with her eyes fixated onto her glass of pumpkin juice.
When Harry entered the room, every one of the Weasleys looked up at him as though expecting Ron to be next to him. It was a well known fact that every time Harry stayed at the Burrow Ron always entered the Kitchen with him. As soon as Hermione saw who it was she glanced down, looking rather disappointed.
“Good morning, Harry dear, how did you sleep?” Mrs Weasley smiled.
“Fine thanks.” Harry said relieved that she hadn’t asked about Ron.
“And I suppose Ron’s still in bed, honestly that boy; you’d swear he’s never slept in his life the way he sleeps in.” Mrs Weasley ranted.
“Well actually Mrs Weasley, he’s awake, has been for a while.” Harry corrected.
“Well I do hope he’d come down soon, I haven’t got time to be making breakfast separately and his pancakes are getting cold. Did he say how long he was going to be?”
Harry wondered whether to tell Mrs Weasley the truth or not. Then again, Harry didn’t think Ron would thank him for broadcasting his private life.
“Well- erm- I- err- don’t think he’ll be down for breakfast.” Harry said unsurely.
“Why not?” Mrs Weasley asked suspiciously.
“Because he’s- err- busy- yes that’s it he’s busy.” Harry said inventing wildly. “He’s doing his home… work.” It wasn’t until after Harry had said it, that he realised how unbelievable that sounded. Ron doing homework!
“Oh, how lovely, well he can’t study with an empty stomach. I’ll just bring up this tray of food and-”
“NO!” Shouted Harry as everyone froze. “I mean, I’ll bring that up for you, Mrs Weasley.” Harry continued whilst attempting to take the tray out of her hands.
But Mrs Weasley didn’t move.
“Harry what, in the name of Merlin, are you doing? You never could lie, could you? Where’s Ron? Why isn’t he coming down?” Mrs Weasley said impatiently.
“I told you he’s doing his homework!”
“Harry-” Began Fred.
“Listen to your self! Ron missing breakfast-” George continued.
“To do homework, it’s ridiculous.” they both finished
“Tell us the truth Harry- and don’t say it is true- because we all know that it isn’t. Why isn’t Ron coming to breakfast?”
Ginny’s voice echoed around the room. There was something in the way she said it- whether it was pleading with him, Harry, or whether it was a sense of urgency, he didn’t know but he suddenly found him self telling her everything.
“I don’t know- and that’s the truth. He’s just sitting there- at the end of his bed- rocking back and forth and muttering to himself. He won’t talk to me, he won’t blink and he’s just continually staring at the same spot on the radiator.” Harry continued, ignoring the fact that neither of them new what a radiator was. “He has bags under his eyes, which are as red as anything, his expression is unreadable and he doesn’t seem to be registering anything I’m saying! It’s like all the life has been sucked out him, I’ve never seen him like that, he’s always been the one to make the jokes when things go wrong but it’s like he’s not really there anymore. The only other time I’ve seen him, even remotely, like this was in second when- and last year when…” Harry trailed off. He was going to say when he thought Hermione had kissed Victor and when she was petrified but he suddenly felt as though he had said too much. “I’m just worried about him!”
There was a short silence, where every one was trying to take everything in. Hermione seemed to be thinking hard and having some sort of fight in her head. She must have made some sort of a decision because she had got to feet.
“I think I’d better leave.” She said finally.
This caused uproar in the Weasley kitchen. Every one began to groan and started to tell her that she should stay.
“I’ve got to, I have no choice!” She waved her wand and a suitcase appeared at her feet. “Ron won’t come down here because of me- and don’t pretend that’s not the reason because it is. He won’t even talk to Harry let alone me and if I stay here I’ll only make matters worse.”
“You have got a choice, you either stay here and make things right or walk away like nothings happened and we both no you don’t want that. Now Hermione, you listen here, if anyone can help my son it’s you and you’re not leaving until we get this whole fiasco sorted out.” Mrs Weasley paused, smiled sympathetically then said, “I know I have been colder towards you Hermione-”
“No you haven’t, you’ve been-”
“Lets not kid ourselves, I have, I know I have; I just think you aught to know why.”
“Mrs Weasley I really don’t mind, there’s no point-”
“There is every point. You are good mannered, sweet, pretty, talented, you’d put life on the line for any one in this room and you’re the cleverest Witch of your age.”
“No Mrs Weasley don’t explain-”
“The reason why I have been unfair towards you, and the only reason, is because I guess I always knew you’d be the one on to take my little boy away from me- no let me finish- I’ve seen the way you are together- the way he used to talk about you after the first year- and I just always knew so I just thought you aught to know that, out of all the girls my son could have picked I’m glad it was you Hermione.”
“But, Mrs Weasley, He doesn’t love me- I love him but he can’t love me, I’m just Hermione Granger, I’ll only ever be a know-it-all in his eyes. He just said that stuff yesterday to shut me up, he doesn’t even fancy me. He hates me, I know he does, I mean when has he ever showed any interest in my life?” Hermione insisted.
“We didn’t think it would come to this Hermione-” Fred said.
“But you leave us no choice.”
“On the count of three.”
“THREE! Accio watchship.” They said in unison. For a second it seemed that noting had happened but then a small ball came zooming into the kitchen.
“What is that thing?” Harry asked.
“A watchship.” Exclaimed Fred.
“A what?” Ginny replied looking completely dumb folded.
“A watchship,” Hermione repeated. “A circular, golden, ball, that allows you to transport temporarily into a memory of anther. A watchship, not to be confused with pensieve, is only used to watch a certain relationship grow and to see, the chosen, person in their present state. However it’s really rare and only can be used the once. It is also very dangerous, if any one tries to interfere with the memory they could be trapped in it forever- or even alter it so much that a certain being may no longer exist. That’s why it’s wise to bring people with you- to stop you from doing anything stupid or rash.” Everybody in the kitchen just stood there gaping at her.
“Bloody hell, Hermione, have you memorised every book in the wizarding world?” Ginny said.
Hermione looked dangerously at her and then said,
“I will not go into anyone’s memory, if that’s what you’re after. I will not invade anybody’s privacy.”
“Hermione, this is Ron’s memory, let me remind you. It won’t be anything YOU haven’t seen before; especially, when we’re showing you YOUR relationship growing.” George Stated.
“But there is nothing to watch!” Hermione said getting more agitated.
“That’s our point, there is something to watch and we need show you because Ron does love you and you love him!” Fred said calmly.
“Where did you get it, anyway?” Hermione asked, clearly buying time.
Fred answered, “Lee gave it to us-”
“Said to save it for just an occasion-”
“Even he saw this coming,”
“Come on Hermione, please, Harry can come with us too.” George Finished.
Hermione began to think. For a moment or two she didn’t say anything but then she mumbled a “Fine” under her breath.
“But I’m only doing it to prove to you there is nothing to see.” Hermione added hastily.
“We wouldn’t have it any other way.” Fred and George said, happily, together.
“Hold on a second, you are not going without an adult- it is far too dangerous.” out of nowhere Mrs Weasley Shouted.
“The more the merrier.” Harry said, excitedly.
“Arthur, you will stay here with Ron and Ginny, they both need looking after whilst Death Eaters are about.” As though she hadn’t been interrupted Mrs Weasley continued.
“Mum I want to come!” Ginny said annoyed.
“Don’t be silly, you’re far too young.”
“YOUNG? YOUNG? I’M 16 YEARS OLD, MOTHER, I’LL BE OFF AGE THIS YEAR. I’M ONLY A YEAR YOUNGER THAN THEM!” She said, pointing at Harry and Hermione.
“Sorry, Ginny, but there are far too many people and you heard what Hermione said you could get trapped in the memory. I know you Ginny and I think you might try and tamper with it, if you saw something you didn’t like.” Mrs Weasley waved her hand as though to say ‘And that’s final’ and went to stand and touch the watchship with Fred, George, Harry and Hermione.
Fred and George said a few funny words and then they all started to spin. It’s a bit like a portkey, Harry thought, but then again a watchship was sort off like a portkey.
They span faster and faster, causing them all to feel sick, until they appeared to be standing on the Hogwarts express looking into a small compartment.
Inside were two small boys; one had scruffy black hair, green eyes and a lightning bolt scar on his forehead, whilst the other had flaming, red hair and freckles. They both looked extremely cheerful and were surrounded by sweets and chocolates. The red-headed boy had a rat on his lap and was speaking to the black-headed boy.
“This is what, six years ago?” George asked.
“It was on our first day, on the Hogwarts express.” Harry said as though amazed by it. “See it’s me and Ron.”
“Exactly, this is where it all started.” replied Fred. Mrs Weasley and Hermione just continued to watch.
The younger Ron appeared to be looking for something in his trunk. A moment later he pulled out his wand and sat back down. He had just raised his wand when a small bushy, brown haired girl, already in her robes, entered the compartment, Hermione. Also a small boy followed.
“Has anyone seen a toad? Neville’s lost one.” She said in a bossy sounding voice.
“We’ve already told him we haven’t seen it,” Ron said.
The younger Hermione didn’t seem to be listening; she was gazing at the wand in his hand,
“Oh, are you doing magic? Let’s see it then.” She sat down and Ron looked taken aback.
“Err- all right.” He cleared his throat.
“Sunshine, daisies, butter mellow,
Turn this stupid, fat rat yellow.”
He waved his wand but nothing happened.
Fred and George burst into laughter.
“He. Actually. Fell. For. It.” Fred said in between laughter. “I can’t believe he actually fell for it.”
“That was cruel!” Hermione said but they continued to laugh.
“Are you sure that’s a real spell?” Said the younger Hermione. “Well it’s not very good, is it? I’ve tried a few simple ones myself but they’ve all worked for me. Nobody in my family is magic at all, it was ever such a surprise when I got the letter, but I was ever so pleased, of course, I mean, it’s the best school of witchcraft there is, I’ve heard- I’ve learnt all our set books by heart, of course, I just hope it will be enough- I’m Hermione Granger by the way, who are you?” The younger Harry looked at Ron and looked relived to see the stunned look on his face.
“I’m Ron Weasley,”
“Harry Potter,” said Harry.
“Are you really?” said Hermione. “I know all about you, of course- I got a few extra books for background reading, and you’re in ‘Modern magical History’ and ’The Rise and fall of the dark arts’ and ‘Great wizarding events of the Twenty century’.”
“Am I?” Harry said looking dazed.
“Goodness, didn’t you know, I’d have found out everything, if it was me,” said young Hermione. “Do either of you know what house you’ll be in? I’ve been asking around and I hope I’m in Gryffindor, it sounds by far the best, I hear Dumbledore himself was one, but I suppose Ravenclaw wouldn’t be too bad… Anyway, we’d better go and look for Neville’s toad. You two better change, I expect we’ll be arriving soon.” And they both left the compartment.
“Whatever house I’m in, I hope she’s not in it.” Said Ron and the scene froze.
“See He hated me!” Hermione spat.
“No he didn’t, you just annoyed him a little bit.” Mrs Weasley said.
“A lot.” Added George.
“But the relationship had to start somewhere didn’t it?” Fred continued.
“And this is how it started for you.” George replied.
“Let have a look- ah here’s one, when you first became friends- this’ll be interesting.” Fred finished.
The scene faded and another appeared.
“Oh no” said the younger Ron.
“It’s the girl’s toilets.” Harry gasped.
“Hermione!” They said together.
They sprinted down the hallway, opened a door and ran through. Inside, was a stricken, looked, Hermione pinned against the wall a troll began knocking the sinks of the wall.
“Confuse it!” said Harry desperately as he threw a tap at the wall. The troll stopped a few feet away from Hermione and turned round to see what had made the noise and made his way to Harry instead.
“Oy, pea-brain!” Ron yelled from the other side of the room and he threw a pipe that hit its shoulder. The troll made its way to Ron and Harry ran around it and pulled Hermione, who seemed, far too horrified to move.
The troll roared and went towards Ron, who was both nearest to it and had no escape; the real Mrs Weasley screamed. The young Harry ran and jumped onto his back and his wand went straight up its nose. The troll shrieked in pain and was about to grab Harry and rip him with his club.
The young Hermione fell to the floor and Ron pulled out his wand.
“Wingardium Leviosa!” The club rose into the air, turned over and dropped onto its owners head and the troll fell onto the floor.
Yet again the scene froze.
“Woh!” gapped Fred. “Who’d of thought it?”
“The couple of the century becoming friends by taking on a fully grown mountain-troll- I never thought Ron had it in him!” George exclaimed as Harry laughed.
“So, Hermione, still think Ron never took an interest in your life?” Fred asked.
“Yes!” Hermione said indefinitely.
“What, but he saved your life!” Harry said.
“Your life Harry yours!” Hermione corrected as Harry gave her a disbelieving look.
“Well maybe this memory will help you out a bit.” George suggested and once again the scene, before them, faded and a new one appeared.
A giant chess board was reviled with thousands of demolished pieces scattered all over the place. Hermione remembered it only too well and even the thought of it made her feel sick. It was extremely dusty but even in all the thick dust they could all make out, a scared looking, Hermione and Harry whilst Ron said,
“We’re nearly there, let me think- let me think…”
The white queen turned its blank face towards him.
“Yes…” said Ron softly, “It’s the only way… I’ve got to be taken.”
“NO!” both, Harry and Hermione shouted.
“That’s chess!” Ron snapped. “You’ve got to make some sacrifices! I take one step forward the queen will take me- that leaves you free to checkmate the king, Harry.”
“Do you want to stop Snape or not?”
“Look if you don’t hurry he’ll already have the stone! Ready?” Ron called his face pale but determined. “Here I go- now, don’t hang around once you’ve won.”
He stepped forward and the white queen pounced. She struck Ron hard around the head with her stone hand- he crashed to the floor and the white queen moved him to the side- both, the young and real, Hermione screamed- the real Mrs Weasley grabbed Fred’s arm and the scene froze.
They all stood there, watching the frozen scene, and for the first time in perhaps, history, the Weasley twins were speechless.
“What does that prove? That he wanted to catch Snape that’s all.” Hermione said gazing at Ron who still lay unconscious on the floor. Even though she knew it all turned out alright, she still had to hold back tears.
“When Dumbledore said that Ron played the best game of chess Hogwarts had seen these many years, I never imagined- I thought he meant a normal game.” Gaped Fred.
“Me too,” Replied George. “And to think that all these years we’ve been teasing the poor guy about it.”
“Ah well!” Fred said. “So that was your first year at Hogwarts and you faced trolls, death, sadness, love, friendship, loyalty-”
“And seven foot chess peaces-”
“Now let’s watch my personal favourite.” Fred said and they were then standing on the Hogwarts grounds.
It was in the second year and the Gryffindor and Slytherin Quidditch teams were standing opposite each other. A slightly older, Ron and Hermione were also with them.
"This would be what? Five years ago?" said George. "Oh, yes, I remember it well. Slytherin came to take over the field for practice so they could train Malfoy to be their new Seeker. Annoying little git."
The seven figures clad in green practice robes brandished broomsticks at the seven figures in red; the words "Nimbus Two Thousand and One" written in gold on the handle of the nearest one. They watched as they all stared, and then Hermione said, "At least no one on the Gryffindor team had to buy their way on. They got in on pure talent."
Malfoy's face went paler than usual, and a sneer curled across his lips.
"Cor, he's an ugly thing," chuckled Fred darkly.
"No one asked your opinion, you filthy little Mudblood," Malfoy snarled at Hermione in the image.
At these words, all the Gryffindors except Harry and Hermione (the only ones who didn't know what a Mudblood was) erupted in a furious explosion of angry words and attempts on Malfoy's life. But Ron’s face was blood red with rage, and his hand tore the broken wand from the front of his robes as he cried, "You'll pay for that one, Malfoy!"
"See that, Fred?" remarked George. "Jumps right to your defence, doesn't he?"
"Violently too," agreed Fred, as a bolt of deep green light slammed out of the back end of his wand and into his stomach. He went reeling onto the ground.
"Ron! Ron! Are you all right?" cried the Hermione in the picture. The young Ron on the ground reacted by belching up a mouthful of slugs into his lap. The scene stopped.
George was attempting to keep his face straight.
"It's not every man who will belch slugs in the attempt to defend his lady."
"Oh, shut up about that," Hermione said. “We were friends, of course he reacted- Harry would’ve- we all would’ve.”
“But Harry didn’t, Ron did!” Fred stated, then looked at a still unconvinced, Hermione and then continued, “No? Well lets try this one.”
The images on the white panel vanished, only to be quickly replaced by new ones. Professor McGonagall was leading Harry and Ron down a hallway.
"Later in the same year," George observed. "That was when the Quidditch match against Hufflepuff was cancelled."
The three figures on the panel entered the hospital wing, where Professor McGonagall warned them that they were in for a shock. Two petrified figures lay on the beds, being attended by Madam Pomfrey. One was Penelope Clearwater
"It's Percy's girlfriend!" grinned Fred and the other was -
"Hermione!" Ron’s voice groaned. They looked from Harry's face to Ron’s. Harry’s was pale and drawn, Bewildered beyond description, and deeply troubled. The Ron standing beside him, however, looked nothing short of distraught. His eyes had a sort of hollowness about them, as though all hope in the world had suddenly been wiped away.
“See that?” George pointed. “He looks- well he looks awful. You did that to him.”
“You never saw that, Hermione but Ron was devastated.” Harry spoke finally. “After that he was even more determined to kill whatever it was that done it to you.”
“Come on, you can’t say he didn’t love you then.” Mrs Weasley said, just above a whisper.
“I can and I will. Like I said before that we were friends- Harry looks devastated to and he certainly doesn’t love me in that way!” Hermione said stubbornly.
“You’re not going to make this easy for us are you, Hermione?” George observed. “Well fine, lets see- ah here we go.”
They were now standing in the potions classroom. The Ron and the Harry, in the image, were sitting down and Malfoy, Crabbe and Goyle were seated on the table next to them.
“This is later that year.” Harry said. “I remember.”
The Malfoy in the picture spoke,
“I bet the next Mudblood dies- pity it wasn’t Granger.”
“The evil, little-” The real Mrs Weasley began.
But she stopped at the site of her son in the picture. His face became purple and his fist was clenched into a tight ball. His whole body was trembling and Ron was just about to pounce when Harry and Dean held him back- the bell rang and Malfoy ran whilst Ron tried to break free.
“Let go of me- I’ll kill him.”
“Ron, don’t be stupid you haven’t got your wand.” Said Harry, trying hard to hold him back.
“I don’t care- I’ll kill him- I’ll kill him with my bare hands.” And the image froze.
“But it all adds up to the same thing.” Hermione pleaded. “We were friends- he stuck up for me, that’s all!”
“But I didn’t and you’re like the sister I never had!” Harry shot back.
“You and Ron aren’t the same people, Ron has a shorter temper.”
“Merlin’s beard!” Fred swore.
Again the images changed, and now they ware looking at Harry and Ron in Lockhart's Defence against the Dark Arts classroom. Harry was at the desk to Ron’s left; to Ron’s right was the empty chair where Hermione should have been. Harry slipped Ron a note: "Let's do it tonight."
“That was the night when we had followed the spiders into the Forbidden Forest and nearly been eaten by Aragog's children.” Harry said. Ron looked as though he was about to be sick as he read the note. Then his gaze slid sideways to Hermione's empty chair, and they saw him nod.
"He hates spiders," said Fred.
"He has ever since you turned his teddy bear into one," George reminded him.
"And yet he agreed to follow them into the depths of the forest," said Fred.
"He did it for you, Hermione," said George.
“It doesn’t prove anything, we’re-”
“Friends? Yer, you told us.”
"This is a short one," said Fred cheerfully.
Hermione was approaching Harry and Ron in the corridor near the Fat Lady. It was their third year; Lupin had just rescued Harry from Snape and taken the Marauder's Map from him. Hermione showed them a letter from Hagrid -- Buckbeak the hippogriff had been sentenced to death. Hermione's face was mournful, Harry's and Ron are determined. They all heard Ron promise to help Hermione do the research for his appeal, and watched Ron’s face turn instantly stunned as she cried, "Oh, Ron!" and threw her arms around him, sobbing.
"Awwww!" cried Fred and George together. They both had their hands clasped under their chins, and their faces were the picture of innocence.
"Look at his face -he LIKED it!" laughed George.
"No, He didn’t! He looks terrified!" they watched him patting Hermione on the top of her head, Ron’s expression extremely nervous.
"Hermione, you prat, what do you think that means?" said Fred, grinning evilly.
The relief on Ron's face was evident when she released him at last and added, "Ron, I'm really, really, really sorry about Scabbers."
"So," said George as these visions too faded, "are you enjoying yourself then?"
"Because we are," added Fred. Hermione didn't answer, just glared at them both.
"We've got another one, from the same year," George continued, as the images shifted once again. Harry recognized the new scene as Defence against the Dark Arts class - and groaned. Snape was filling in for an absent Lupin, and being particularly horrible. He kept asking them questions about werewolves, which we had not studied. Hermione, of course, had her hand in the air for every question, but he pointedly ignored her.
Finally, she started to answer his question without being called on. Snape glowered at her, and promptly took points away from Gryffindor because she was "an insufferable know-it-all." Hermione put her hand down, stared at her desk, and tried desperately not to cry.
Ron looked horrified as they watched him jump to her defence once again.
"You asked a question, and she knows the answer! Why ask us if you don't want to be told?" Ron in the image shouted.
"Whoa," said Fred, softly.
"I have to say, that took some guts," said George, looking impressed.
"Attacking Malfoy and belching slugs is one thing," Fred continued, "but yelling at Snape?! He’s either stupid or mad.”
"Lovely detention he gave him, too," added George, watching. "Ah, well, faint heart never won fair lady, and all that." Fred snickered. Hermione just glared at them.
"Now, I was wondering," George continued. "I know that he, at some point, did ask you to the Yule Ball. Let's see exactly what brought that on, shall we?"
The picture faded again, but this time they were in the common room.
Harry remembered this scene only too well. It was in their forth year, he had just been turned down by Cho and Ron by Fleur.
Harry and Ron were laughing hard and Ginny looked utterly annoyed as Hermione entered the portrait hole.
“Why weren’t you two at dinner?” She said walking over to them.
“Because- oh, shut up laughing, you two- because they’ve just been turned down by girls they asked to the Yule Ball!” said Ginny and Ron and Harry instantly stopped laughing.
“Thanks a bunch, Ginny.” Ron said, sourly.
“All the good looking ones are taken, Ron?” said Hermione loftily. “Eloise Midgen starting to look quite pretty now, is she? Well, I’m sure you’ll find someone somewhere who’ll have you.”
The Ron in the image was staring at Hermione as though she was a completely different person. “Hermione, Neville’s right- you are a girl…”
“Ha! Of all the chat-up lines that has to be the worsted!” laughed Fred.
“‘You are a girl’- Classic.” George said, turning to Hermione. “I bet you didn’t take that well!”
“She didn’t.” Harry added. “They had anther row and Ron asked her to the ball- but she said she was already going with someone but wouldn’t say who- He tried to find out but Hermione wouldn’t tell him.”
“So anyway, the Yule Ball came and, let’s just say, not everyone had a good time.” Fred said, wiping away tears from the laughter.
The image changed. They were now reliving the Ball. Everyone was dancing except Ron and Harry.
Harry was watching Cho and Cedric and Ron glared at Hermione and Krum, with a look of utter bitterness, anger and hollowness in his eyes. Padma Patil had arms and legs crossed and appeared to be furious and bored.
The song had finished and, a pink faced, Hermione came over and sat next to Harry.
“Hi.” Harry said.
“It’s hot, isn’t it?” Hermione began to fan herself, “Victors gone to get some drinks.”
Ron gave her a look fall of hatred. “Victor?” He said. “Hasn’t he asked you to call him Vickie yet?”
Hermione looked shocked and surprised. “What’s up with you?” she said.
“If you don’t know, then I’m not going to tell you.” Ron said scratchily.
“He’s from Durmstrang!” Ron spat. “He’s competing against Harry- against Hogwarts! You- you’re-” Ron was obviously trying to think of something strong enough to describe what she had done wrong. “Fantasising with the enemy, that’s what you’re doing.” And the image stopped.
“Don’t even think about talking, Hermione!” Fred said. “There’s still one more memory from that night.”
And sure enough a new memory took place.
In the memory Harry was watching Ron and Hermione having a blazing row. They were, both, ten feet apart and red faced.
“Well if you don’t like it, you know what the solution is, don’t you?” Hermione screamed lauder than the whole Weasley family had ever heard her.
“Oh yeah?” Ron yelled back. “What’s that?”
“Next time there’s a ball, ask me before someone else does and not as a last resort.” And with that Hermione stormed up the girls’ staircase, leaving Ron Mouthing soundlessly.
“He was completely jealous.” Fred said. “There Krum was, his hero, he had it all fame, money, glory and now he had you, Hermione the one he loved. It must have broken his heart.”
“Why else would he suddenly hate someone of whom he worshipped for most of his life?” George said innocently.
“Still not convinced,” added Fred who could see Hermione starting to break. “No? Ok, well we’ve only got the one for the fifth year!”
The memory faded and the famous trio were in the Great Hall.
“Good luck, Ron.” The Hermione in the image said as she stood on tiptoes and kissed him on the cheek. “And you, Harry…”
Hermione walked away and Ron seemed to come to himself slightly. Seeming too distracted to notice anything around him he touched the spot where Hermione had kissed him looking puzzled and as though he wasn’t quite sure what had happened.
“See that?” Mrs Weasley said. “You don’t do that if you don’t like the person, do you?”
“Mrs Weasley, I never kissed him before- I’d only ever kiss Harry on the cheek- he was shocked.”
“Well what about that time you asked him to the Slughorn party?”
“Hold your horses, Harry, we’re getting to that.” George said.
They were now in Herboligy and now looked more like their current selves.
“Why don’t you make out with McLaggen and then he can make you king and queen Slug!” Ron said sourly.
“We’re allowed to bring guests,” said Hermione blushing furiously. “And I was thinking of inviting you, but if you’d rather I ‘get off with McLaggen’ then I won’t bother.”
Ron blushed back. Looking very pleased with himself, he said sheepishly, “No, I wouldn’t.”
The image paused and Fred and George gave Hermione a look as if to say ‘you can’t deny that.’
“I doesn’t prove anything!”
“This one then,” Fred said, getting annoyed.
They watched as the image disappeared and another reappear.
Harry, Ron and Hermione were in an empty class room. Hermione looked distraught and Harry looked as if he didn’t know what to do. It was the night when Ron and Lavender first became a couple and Hermione stood up to leave the room. But before she did she sent a load of canneries to attack Ron.
“Ouch,” George said. “Remind me to never get on the wrong side of you. Painful, for you though, wasn’t it?”
“That was totally out of character,” Fred observed. “Fancy doing that, just because he got a girlfriend.”
“Poor Ron never even dreamt of doing that to you when you were with Krum.”
The classroom vanished and the trio were all sitting around a table and Ron looked agitated, “I think the spell-itself-quill that Fred and George gave me for my birthday is loosing its spell-it-self spell.”
“I’ll fix that,” Said Hermione reaching for the peace of Parchment, “Then you can borrow my quill to write the rest.”
“I love you, Hermione.” Ron said, rubbing his eyes and sitting back in his chair.
A blush crept upon Hermione’s face and her mouth opened but once again the image froze.
“He even admitted it there,” Fred stated disbelievingly “and you still don’t see that he-” but Fred was unable to finish.
“It’s a figure of speech, Fred- it’s like when I loose a game of chess to Ron I say ‘I hate you’ but I don’t ever mean it.” Hermione said in a-matter-of-factly tone.
“Fine, fine, fair enough.” George interrupted. “We’ve only got one more memory from Ron’s past to show you.”
Everything went black and then the Hogwarts ground appeared, but this time it was fall of unfamiliar faces none, of which, looked happy.
It was at Dumbledore’s funeral and Hermione was weeping into Ron’s shoulder as Ron held her tight, stroking her hear as tears began to leak form his eyes too.
“And what do you call that? The Hippogriff and the brown- bloody- owl?” George asked.
“No,” Hermione snapped dangerously. “I call it two friends comforting each other.”
“Oh yeah, and I’m not magic!” shouted Fred. “Want to see Ron in his present state now, Hermione? No, well tuff you have no choice! I warn you, though, you all better be in for a shock because this might just tear you all apart.” Fred warned and for the last time the scene changed.
Ron, as Harry had last seen him, was rocking back and forth on his bed, mumbling to himself, without blinking. This time, however, he wasn’t staring at a radiator, but at a small picture clasped into his hands.
Looking at the picture, Harry realised that it was the picture that had been taken of Ron, Hermione and himself in their first year at Hogwarts. Harry stood in the centre of the photo and Ron and Hermione were beside him. Harry looked extremely annoyed and Ron and Hermione were glaring at each other and looked as though they had just had a row.
Ron wore the same expressionless face as he had done earlier this morning. The bags were still under his tomato, red eyes and he looked even more pale and troubled than he had been, if it were possible.
Hermione’s stomach gave a horrible twinge and her Heart began to race.
All of a sudden Ron made a sudden movement and threw the photo against the wall- the glass smashed- Ron began ripping a poster of Krum- Demolishing the bedroom. He was going mad! He ran to the wardrobe and tipped it over and that, too smashed.
When there was nothing else to throw or kick he looked around, his face was confused and puzzled. He walked backwards, bumped into the corner, crouched down and cried.
“NO!” Screamed Hermione and, both, her and Mrs Weasley was about to go over to Ron.
“No,” Harry snapped putting his arms in front of them so they couldn’t go any further. “You touch him and you’ll be stuck in here forever.” And at that moment it went pitch black and they began to spin again.
Harry looked around him and realised he was back in the Weasley’s kitchen He got up of the floor and saw that Ginny was sitting on the table and a, worried Mr Weasley in the door way.
“Sorry about, cutting the present state short,” Explained George. “But you were about to tamper with it.”
But Hermione wasn’t listening; she ran to the door in tears but Mr Weasley wouldn’t let her past.
“Move over, Ron- I need to see Ron- I can apperate you know- if you don’t let me past-” Hermione said trying to push Mr Weasley aside and failing miserably.
Mr Weasley grabbed Hermione’s arms and said, “Hermione, there’s no point- I’ve already tried- I’ve heard crashes and bangs and I’ve tried to get into his room but I can’t. I’ve tried apperating, the Alohomora charm, even an explosion hex but the door won’t budge! I’ve been worried sick.”
“He’s alright Arthur- what am I saying he’s not alright- he’s distraught,” said, a trembling, Mrs Weasley. “But what can we do? If he’s that distressed the room will have an emotion force-field- oh Arthur what are we going to do?”
“The only thing we can do, we’ll have to wait until he’s ready to come out!” Mr Weasley replied.
“But, Arthur, he has no food- or drink- what if he never comes out? What if he- he…” Mrs, Weasley was unable to continue and trailed off.
She sobbed into her husbands shoulder, Hermione crying and the rest of the Weasley’s worried and confused.
“Emotion force-fields- they can be broken- I know they can- I’ve read all about them- oh why did I have to be like that last night? Why couldn’t I just have told him that I loved him too?” Hermione said, speaking mostly to herself. “They can be broken- but how? Why can’t I remember?”
“Hermione there isn’t a way because it’s controlled by emotions.” Ginny insisted trying to calm her down.
“No!” She said slapping Ginny’s hand out of the way. “There is a way- I know there is- I’ve just got to remember. I love him I can’t just sit back at watch this happen to him! Why was I so short sited? Why couldn’t I just have believed him yesterday? Because I’m Hermione Granger, no one loves me; there is nothing to love why would anyone even look twice at me? Please Ron, if you can hear me just- just tell me why!”
At that moment Ron appeared in the door way, pale as a ghost. No one spoke and he walked in to stand in front of, a scared, Hermione. For a few moments he just stared blankly at her.
“Hermione, I love you because- because you’re you.” Ron, finally, whispered.
Hermione flung he arms around his neck and cried, “Oh Ron, I’m so sorry- I’m sorry Ron!” Hermione broke free and then continued, “I love everything about you- from your red hair to your lop-sided smile to the way you walk to your stubborn personality. I love the way you make me smile without saying a word even when I can’t find the light at the end of the tunnel. I Love your sarcastic comments even if I appear not to and I dream about the day we end up together. You’re the only one who can control me without even trying- you can make me cry with, both, Happiness and sadness. You are the only one to keep me sane and drive me insane at the same time. You’re the only person I understand but the only one that confuses me so much I don’t know who I am or what to do. You give me strength when I feel so weak and make me feel weak when I have all the strength in the world. I don’t know what I’d do if I ever lost you and there have been sleepless nights where I’ve wondered if you were dead or alive- and I hate it! I hate our endless rows. I hate it when we fall out so badly that I couldn’t see us ever becoming friends. I hate the way you made feel, just by going out with Lavender and I hate the way you always contradict what I say or do!” She paused. “So then why am I still so madly in love with you when I hate you so much? But the truth is, I don’t know why- I don’t know how I can love you after all the downs we’ve had- but you’re always there Ron; and, I guess, the only reason I love you so much, Ron, is because you’re you and I wouldn’t want you any other way.”
Ron leaned forward and Hermione tilted her head. They moved closer and closer until there lips met.
Six years of waiting, not knowing was, finally, over. It was the most fantastic thing that Hermione and Ron had experienced. Both, of their hearts we’re racing and Happiness filled them. Six years of waiting, but do you know what? Every second of waiting was worth it.
Weather it had been seconds or minutes, they did not know but they eventually broke apart. They were both blushing furiously but smiling at each other whilst looking into each others eyes.
“FINALLY!” Harry yelled.
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