Harry hadn’t realized that he fell asleep til he heard someone come in the front door. It was Hermione and Viktor. ‘What was he doing here?’ Harry thought to himself. He unconsciously scooted down to where he was not visible from the other side of the sofa. He listened and wondered when a good time to sit up was.
“Thank you Viktor, it was great to see you.” Hermione said.
“It was wonderful to see you too, Hermione. Have a good night.” Viktor said.
“Thanks, you too. I’ll talk to you soon, okay.” Hermione said.
Harry then heard the door shut again and slowly rose up and stretched and yawned as if he was just waking up.
“Hello Harry.” Hermione said from the kitchen.
“Did you know I was here?” Harry said.
“Yeah, Viktor and I passed Ginny and the gang on the way here and she told me that you would be here.” Hermione said with a smile in her voice.
“How was your date?” Harry said standing up and walking over to the kitchen where Hermione was getting some food for Crookshanks.
“I thought we went over this. It wasn’t a date.” Hermione said. “It was nice.”
“Nice.” Harry said. “How’s Viktor doing?”
“He’s fine. He’s thinking of moving to town to help coach the Quidditch team at Hogwarts. He said that he loved the field there.” Hermione responded back.
“That’s good, I guess. So, how are things between you two?” Harry asked not knowing if he wanted to know the answer.
“We are friends.” Hermione said. “Can I ask you a question?”
“Sure” Harry said.
“Why are you here?” Hermione asked.
“I wanted to make sure that you knew about dinner and make sure that you were coming.” Harry answered.
“That’s nice of you, I mean; you could have just left a note.” Hermione grinned.
“Well, I was also using it as a way to get away from someone for a bit.” Harry said honestly.
Hermione looked over at Harry and said, “Jo”.
“Yes.” Harry admitted.
“She’s a bit relentless, she means well.” Hermione said.
“I guess we better get going?” Hermione asked.
“We should. They will wonder where we are.” Harry said opening the door for Hermione and then leaving to go to the Irish Pub.
Hermione turned up at Harry and said, “You aren’t going to tell me, are you?”
“Tell you what?” Harry said.
“Ginny said that you had something to tell me.” Hermione said nudging Harry in his side.
“Did she?” Harry said as he put his arm around Hermione’s shoulder and tickled her side with his other free hand.
“HARRY! Stop!” Hermione yelled in between bursts of laughter.
Harry stopped but left his arm in place around her shoulder. Hermione smiled and felt her heart skip a beat as Harry left his arm around her shoulders. Was he trying to tell her something? She wished that the pub was further away and she could see in the just a block away now. She stopped walking which made Harry stop as well. He pulled his arm down by his side and asked, “Why are we stopped?”
“You know, you have a great way of avoiding questions. What did you need to tell me?” Hermione said.
“I’m not avoiding anything. Come on, we are going to be late.” Harry said grabbing her hand and pulling her along to the pub. Hermione felt him squeeze her hand as he did this and she almost felt her pulse quicken.
They arrived at the pub and looked around and saw that their friends were all in the back corner booth. Harry held onto Hermione’s hand til they reached the booth. Jo looked absolutely relieved to see them both. “Harry, come sit by me!” Jo insisted.
Hermione let out a sigh and Harry whispered, ‘it’s okay, I rather sit by you.”
Hermione took a double-take at looked at him with shock. Did Harry Potter just say that to me, she thought? Hermione sat next to Ginny who was sitting next to Ron. Hermione still had a stunned look on her face when Ginny was poking her side. She finally turned to Ginny and said, “What was that?”
Ginny said, “So, how was your outing?”
“Fine, Viktor and I are friends.” Hermione said.
Hermione then said in a much lower voice, “Gin, let’s go to the loo, I need to talk to you.” Ginny nodded.
“Hermione,” Ginny said in a normal tone for the table to hear, “I need to go to the loo.” Hermione chimed in and said, “Oh, me too.”
They left the booth and hurried off to the loo.
Ron turned to Harry and said, “They always have to go to the ladies room together, don’t they?”
Jo took advantage of having two boys to herself, “So boys, what are we going to do tomorrow.” She reached her hand underneath the table and grabbed Harry’s hand and squeezed it and he took his hand out of hers and placed his hands on top of the table and shook his head no.
Ron pondered what they could do. “We could go see the band, The Parselmouths. They are playing tomorrow night in the park. There’s a large festival before hand with tons of food, drinks, and a variety of games.”
“Sounds like fun.” Jo said.
“It actually does sound like it would be fun.” Harry said.
“Great, so the three of us, then”, Jo said happily.
Meanwhile in the bathroom…
“Okay, so tell me exactly what he said again.” Ginny asked for the second time.
“He said that he rather sit by me”, said Hermione and then added, “well, that doesn’t sound like much now. Perhaps, I am looking into more than I should.”
“No, you aren’t. Harry likes you. He just doesn’t know how to tell you.” Ginny said boldly.
“How can you be so sure, did he tell you?” Hermione asked.
“I thought that you didn’t care.” Ginny said remembering their earlier conversation.
“I never said that. Ok, ok… I’ll admit it, I feel something for Harry. We’ve been friends for nearly 10 years and I just don’t know how to switch to boyfriend-girlfriend. Sometimes, I think he’s looking at me a certain way, and then I don’t. I don’t even know if we would be a good couple? And what about my cousin, she’s practically all over him all the time and even has his name tattooed on her back.” Hermione said very nervously.
“It’s going to work out, you know it will. And Jo, she’ll go back home eventually. Maybe you should talk to her. Really talk to her. She’ll listen, she’s your family.” Ginny said.
“You need to talk to Harry, too.” Ginny said.
“I know. Come on; let’s go back out there before Jo has her way with Harry right there in the booth.” Hermione said with a laugh.
The girls headed back to the booth and scooted in.
“Ron came up with a brilliant idea for us to go and do tomorrow.” Jo said.
“What’s that?” Ginny asked.
“Nothing really, just going to the festival and seeing the band, The Parselmouths play.” Ron said.
“Sorry, you girls can’t make it.” Jo added in.
“Why can’t we?” Ginny asked rudely.
“I just figured that you would be busy unpacking since you just got back and I thought that Hermione would be off in the library studying and working seeing as she didn’t get to do that today.” Jo said as a matter of fact.
Harry spoke up and said, “I would love it if you both came, it’s no fun if you aren’t there.” Harry looked at Hermione and winked.
Hermione smiled and said, “I think that I’ll be able to manage, besides, I got some work done earlier today.”
Jo frowned and then stopped and said, “Wonderful.”
“Glad to see you are so pleased.” Hermione said coldly.
The waitress came over and said, “Hello, are you ready to order?”
Ron spoke first, “I’ll have the Corn beef and cabbage plate with a double order of corn beef and a baked potato on the side with everything.”
Jo went next, “I’ll have the Irish Stew.”
Harry gestured over to Hermione to go next. Hermione said, “I’ll have a plain potato and the grilled salmon.”
Ginny went next, “I’ll have the same.”
Harry lastly said, “I’ll have the grilled chicken and a baked potato with everything.”
The waitress smiled and said, “Be right back with your order. A round of butterbeers will be around shortly.”
They all gladly took one when the waitress returned quickly with them. Ginny held her glass out and said, “To good friends.” They all clinked glasses and drank happily.
The waitress was back immediately with all of their dinners. They all ate and drank cheerfully.
Neville had stopped in the pub later and stopped by to say hi to Ginny. Hermione stood up so that Neville could sit by Ginny and then sat back down. Everyone had to scoot over to give Neville room which only made Jo squeeze closer to Harry. He couldn’t stand this. He didn’t like Jo’s advances and how she was always trying to hold his hand, rub his arm, etc. Harry looked over at Hermione and said, “Hermione, you want to go get some air on the roof, it’s suppose to be a full moon tonight?”
Hermione almost jumped up in delight before responding, “Sure.”
Ginny shared a look with Neville as if to say, ‘see, I told you.’ Jo watched in horror as Hermione and Harry went up the spiral staircase to the roof patio. They served warm butterbeer and had chairs and tables for people to sit at. Harry grabbed two butterbeers when he reached the top and handed one to Hermione.
“Let’s go over there.” Harry said gesturing with his arm towards two chairs in the corner all alone. Hermione nodded and tried to remain calm.
They sat and a pub-elf came by and lit the lamp that was sitting on the table between the chairs. Harry took a deep breath and sighed.
Hermione took a sip of her butterbeer and said, “That bad, uh?”
“I just needed to get away for a moment.” Harry said.
“What’s wrong?” Hermione asked.
“To be honest, your cousin. How long will she be here?” Harry asked.
“I don’t know, she just got here. She seems taken with you, that’s for sure.” Hermione said.
“Yeah, I really don’t like that at all.” Harry said.
“You aren’t seeing anyone right now; perhaps, you’ll realize that you like her.” Hermione said.
“It doesn’t mean I want her.” Harry said.
Hermione couldn’t bring herself to look at Harry. If any moment was perfect to tell Harry of her feelings, it was this one.
“Yeah, I don’t think she’s your type.” Hermione said with a small smile.
“What’s my type, then?” Harry asked.
“Someone who is kind, understands you, and genuinely cares about you.” Hermione answered.
Harry smiled and said, “You don’t happen to know anyone that would fit that description, do you?”
“Perhaps”, Hermione said surprised at her own self.
“If you ever do find a girl like that, I would be interested in taking her out on a date.” Harry said as he leaned forwards toward Hermione.
“Really”, Hermione asked.
“Yes, she sounds lovely.” Harry answered as he sat back in his chair.
They both looked up at the full moon and watched the stars. They enjoyed the peace and quite of the day.