The entire household was woken bright and early the next morning by a loud, continuous knock.
It was Hermione who finally rolled out of bed, so annoyed by the sound that she couldn't stand to sleep through it anymore. Feeling as though it was not her place to open the door in a home that was not her own, she headed to Ronald's room, with the intent to wake him up. She slowly opened the door, only to have a loud rumble of snores meet her ears. Neville was laying over by the window, with his arms over his blond head, and was curled up into what was almost a ball. Harry, on the other hand, was laying with his face to the wall, his glasses dangling limply from his hand.
And then, on the bed, was her own dear Ronald, who was mumbling something in his sleep at the moment. She knelt next to the bed and whispered in his ear, "Ron."
He groaned slightly and rolled over onto his back. "Ron, sweetheart, you've got to wake up," murmured Hermione, kissing his cheek.
His blue eyes opened a crack, and then he squeezed them shut. "Go 'way, Hermione," he muttered.
She made an indignant noise and whacked him over the head. "Get up!" she snapped, pulling him up by the arm.
"Alright," he grunted. "I'm up. I'm up!"
He swung his legs over the side, and she nearly dragged him out of the room. It wasn't until they were halfway down the stairs when he asked, "What the bloody hell am I doing up this early?"
"Someone's at the door."
"What?" said Ron, stopping in his tracks. "I don't have my wand."
"Oh, use your brain, Ronald," she snapped. "It's obviously someone we know. The house is Hidden, remember?"
"Good point," he said, continuing down the stairs. "I wonder who it is?"
His question was answered as they opened the door to find a tall, blonde, very beautiful woman and a man with jet black hair and very sharp features. Accompanying them, was a small, and still very pretty, girl who looked to be about eleven. "Are you Charles?" asked the man, with a very thick French accent.
"Er, no," said Ron, turning slightly red. "I'm Ronald."
"'Oo are you?" the woman asked of Hermione, whom she had been examining critically.
"Je m'appelle Hermione," she answered smartly, causing Ron to stare at her.
"I didn't know you spoke French," he whispered.
Hermione just hushed him and continued, "Are you Madame and Monsieur Delacour?"
The couple nodded and exchanged a look. "We were expecting Madame Weasley to welcome us to her 'ome," said Monsieur disdainfully.
"She's asleep right now," said Hermione, trying not to sound cold. "She's been extremely busy preparing for the wedding and certainly deserves her rest."
When Monsieur Delacour looked slightly affronted, Hermione did her best to regain her composure. "You may come into the living room to wait for her, though," she continued, gesturing for them to come inside, while glancing pointedly at Ron.
When he didn't react, she elbowed him hard in the chest. "Won't you take their bags, Ronald?"
"Oh, yeah," he mumbled, picking up his future family's luggage and carrying them into the house.
"I'd get up if I were you," said a voice, calling Agnes out of her peaceful sleep. "Fleur is having a bit of a fit."
Agnes opened her eyes to find Tonks shaking her. She looked around to see her mother rolling out of bed, bleary-eyed. It seemed that the bride of the day had left the room already but Agnes could now hear shouts of aggravated French echoing up the stairs. It sounded like Fleur and her mother were having a bit of a argument.
There was a knock on the door, and Tonks opened it to find Arthur Weasley standing there looking very harassed. "Sorry to bother you," he said. "But could you get dressed quickly?"
"What on earth are they screaming about, Mr. Weasley?" asked Agnes curiously.
"Well, I don't speak French," he responded, wiping his glasses on his shirt. "But Hermione says it's something about Fleur wanting to see Bill and her mother telling her that it's not allowed on her wedding day."
"I need to go," he muttered, nodding at them.
Remus was hurrying up the stairs, trying to dodge Madame Delacour. To be quite frank, he was rather frightened of her since she had been screaming at him for the past ten minutes for merely sitting at the kitchen table. Absolutely mad.
In his rush, he nearly bowled over Agnes, who was coming downstairs, now in her pretty pink dress. He grasped her shoulders quickly to keep her from falling down. "You look lovely," he said, with a slightly proud look on his face.
"Thank you," she said, sounding surprised. "Um, I need to, um, go, though."
Remus watched her as she hurried down the stairs, wishing things were different.
The mirror in Charlie Weasley's bedroom was an old antique. It had probably belonged to some great-grandmother. With its clawed feet and gold frame, it was reminiscent of the mirror that had been in Lily's room at James's house.
As she studied her weathered looking reflection, the glass of the mirror seemed to shimmer, and Elle could have sworn, if only for a moment, that it was December of 1978 again. In that brief second, there was Lily, brushing her flaming red hair, and Brigid, hanging upside-down from the bed behind Lily, as she always did. Just as the memory passed, she could see herself as she once was. Seventeen years old. Without age lines. Without the worry.
The picture in the mirror faded again and all that was left, was the now thirty-five year old Elle. The youthfulness was gone. The happiness was gone. All that was left was a woman in a pale blue dress, almost similar to the one she had worn, all those years ago. Remus always liked it when I wore blue. And as thought came, unbidden, so did a single tear that rolled slowly down her cheek. How could this reflection have changed so much?
There was a sharp knock on the door, and Elle quickly pulled herself together. "Come in."
The door opened, and Remus entered, stopping just inside the door. "Is Tonks here?" he asked.
"She went down to the garden some time ago," said Elle softly.
Remus gave a bit of an annoyed sigh. "I told her to wait for me," he muttered, before looking back at Elle. "You look nice."
Just as Elle opened her mouth to thank him, Ginny Weasley came in through the door, looking rather displeased. Both adults stared at her for a moment. Her face was tilted downward and as she looked up slowly from her dark green bridesmaid dress, both felt a jolt as they remembered that she was not, in fact, Lily Evans.
"Elle, can you help me zip my dress?" said Ginny, giving them both a very weird look.
"Of course," said Elle breathlessly, coming forward to fix the dress. "You should go find Tonks," she said to Remus, her voice strained.
He nodded slightly, avoiding eye contact, and left the room just as Mrs. Weasley's voice rang up the stairs, calling for her only daughter. "You should probably come with me," said Ginny. "It'll be starting soon."
Meanwhile, Hermione had gone to the boys' room and, after letting herself in, discovered that they had just gotten up. "Bloody hell, Hermione," groaned Ron. "Can't you ever wait until we're awake?"
"You're awake now!" she snapped. "Get up!"
"Then get out," grumbled Ron, as Harry and Neville started to trudge out of bed.
At this, Hermione glared at him and whacked him over the head but left the room, slamming the door as she went. She returned only five minutes later, when Mrs. Weasley called up the stairs for the boys. Hermione, at this point, burst back through the door, only to find that although Harry and Neville had managed to get ready, Ron was still moving as slow as possible. She marched over to him and grabbed his tie, which was hanging around his neck, and proceeded to tie it.
"Hermione, will you just breathe for a minute?"
"BOYS, COME DOWN HERE!"
Harry and Neville skirted out of the room at the sound of Mrs. Weasley's voice, leaving Ron to the mercy of Hermione.
But, not surprisingly, twenty minutes went by, and the couple had still not come downstairs. "Fred, son, will you go fetch your brother?" asked Mr. Weasley, with a bit of a cough.
"You want me to go up there?" asked Fred indignantly. "Sorry, dad, but I don't fancy seeing little Ronnikins bottom."
"Fred," muttered Mr. Weasley. "First of all, I told him to tone it down while he was home and second of all, your mother is about to murder me, so I would appreciate it if you did this one little thing for me."
"Fine," groaned Fred. "But it'll be you paying for it if my eyes get burned out."
Fred's eyes did not, in fact, get burned out, as he was smart enough to pound on the door without entering and, about an hour later, was waiting for the wedding procession to start.
Gabrielle Delacour was complaining about the state of the flowers she had been given. Luckily enough, Hermione managed to calm her down by the time she had to start the procession as the flower girl. Ron came in next, with Hermione, followed by Remus and Tonks, who had been very reluctantly been put into the wedding procession by Fleur. Next, came Fred Weasley, who brought up his sister. George, however, had gotten paired up with one of Fleur's friends, Sandrine, who was a very short, dark haired girl that Fleur had gone to school with. Harry, also, had gotten paired up with a girl named Genevieve, who did not look at all displeased with her date.
Charlie Weasley, the best-man, was last in the procession with Charlotte, Fleur's best friend.
Finally, the bridal march started and Monsieur Delacour took Fleur up to meet her husband-to-be