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Taking Off the Rose-Colored Glasses by cosmopiltan411
Chapter 9 : finding something old again
 
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Chapter IX: finding something old again

--

People find life to be entirely too time consuming” -Stanislaw Jerzy Lec

--

“Is that really my Hermione?” Ron exclaimed with a jovial grin as he rushed toward her and pulled her into a tight embrace, shamelessly lifting her off the floor and twirling her around, making a total fool of himself in the middle of the arrival gate at the airport.

She giggled as she held on for dear life until he finally put her down, before finally turning her attention to Harry once they separated she turned to look at Harry and, if possible, her grin grew wider at the sight of him. “Come on Harry, aren't you going to greet an old mate?”

He let out a laugh, shrugging as he said “I wasn't quite sure if I deemed you worthy of one of my world class hugs yet.”

She grimaced at hearing his comment, her nose scrunching up in distaste. “My God that ego of yours really is something, isn't it?”

“Well there's a lot to be vain about, don't you know,” he told her with a wink, even flexing an arm to further annoy her.

Despite herself a smile tugged at her lips as she watched her best mate make a fool of himself—she really did have a knack for surrounding herself with “brilliant” people. “Just hug me you bloody arse, I've missed it far too much to put up with all of these pretenses right now.”

He grinned at her as he pulled her into a tight embrace, whispering into her ear “anything for you Hermione, you know that; I never could say no to you, whether I liked it or not…”

He took a deep breath as he slowly took in the scent of her perfume while reveling in feel of the woman who he had been so sure was an apparition when he'd first seen her only minutes ago. “Bloody hell, I've missed you Hermione… it's been far too long.”

Ugh, God, it really has been,” she said, letting out a deep breath of relief, that she didn't even know she had been holding in, as she tightened her hold on him.

--

“Well Ron's officially way past the passed out phase—didn't even wake as I took off his clothes,” Hermione laughed as she took a seat on the chesterfield by Harry.

“Yeah, sorry about him, he wanted to stay up until late, he really did, but he's been doing a lot of extra work for the joke shop so he wouldn't get behind when he came back from the honeymoon,” Harry admitted as he threw an arm across the back of Hermione's seat, pulling her closer to him.

She immediately moved closer to him, resting her head on his shoulder. “I've missed this—I mean, when you go on without this so long, as I did, you almost forget what it's like to be here, but then… then you come back and it just… you see everything that you've been missing out on this entire time, I suppose.”

“But you were happy there at least, weren't you?”

She smiled up at him. “Yeah, of course I was. I mean there isn't a more fulfilling profession for someone like me, but still… sometimes I just wonder if it was worth it—losing you two.”

Harry, despite himself, winced at her words. “Well, I wouldn't say that you lost us.”

“I didn't mean it like that—just in the physical sense. I mean even when we wrote letters to one another I just… I felt like I wasn't part of your lives anymore… as if I didn't matter.”

Harry rolled his eyes as he nudged her playfully. “We couldn't get rid of you if we wanted to, Hermione; you know that well enough that I shouldn’t even have to remind you of it.”

“You're an insensitive arse, you know that, Harry?” she pouted.

“Oh come on, Hermione, as if you could ever lose us, that's absolutely preposterous.”

“It's not that—I just felt as if I couldn't be a part of it anymore because I left… and I mean it is my fault-”

“Hey—hey—hey,” he said, untangling himself from her so he could look at her face to face. Placing a finger under her chin and lifting her head so that she was looking into his eyes, he was shocked by the sight of the tears forming in her eyes. “You did what you had to do and we all understood that,” he told her as he slowly wiped a tear away with his rough, calloused thumb.

“But was it worth it?—I mean look at everything that I’ve missed because I was gone,” she protested.

He smiled at her slowly. “How about this, you and I can go out tomorrow and I'll bore you with all of the details of my past three years without you.”

As she heard his suggestion the frown that had been marring her face quickly evaporated. “Everything?—Even the boring details that I've already read about in the letters?”

“In such excruciating detail that you'll be begging me to stop,” he winked at her as he pulled her into a tight embrace. “And, just so you know, I expect the same from you.”

“Deal,” she whispered as she gave him a peck on the cheek.


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