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Grazed Knees by Padfoot_Prongs
Chapter 13 : xiii.
 
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three. 

xiii.

Don’t be scared of anything at all
Everything we have is all we need 

August third.
1998.

Though they’d been reunited by the Black Lake after the war, Hermione had gone back to her friends without him.  It hadn’t been the time to reveal their relationship.  However, as the days fell by and May faded into June and June blossomed into July, she finally plucked up enough courage.

Hermione sat in her room at her house, staring at Draco’s letter intently.  She’d memorized every word as it had been the only contact between the two of them since May.  They hadn’t spoken, hadn’t seen each other, but they’d promised by the lake that they’d find their way back to each other.  He had to sort his life out, had to pull his parents back together, had to make the Manor into a home again.  And, likewise, she had to help support the Weasley’s, she had to take care of herself, and she had to be with her friends.

My love –

Oh, how I miss you.  Every day without you is empty, but I manage, as you asked me to.  The Manor looks beautiful; I finally can recognize it again.  I have a request.  I’ve already spoken with my parents, and, while my father is in disbelief, my mother understands.  I want you to come stay here for a week, so we can be together.  I want to hold you in my arms and I want to kiss you until we dream again.  If you accept, please let me know.  My parents won’t be home that week, either; they’re finally taking a vacation so they can relax for once.

In answer to your request, of course.  When you first asked, I wasn’t sure that I would be alright with letting them know, but I was silly.  They’re your best friends, and I want to show you off to the world.  I want everyone to know you’re mine.  If it’s okay, I’d also like to tell Blaise and Pansy, and I’d like you to meet them, as well.

Write me words of love.

Draco

She smiled, touching the corner when she knew he’d kissed it.  Her Draco, finally.  He would be arriving at her house in just an hour before they went over to the Burrow to formally introduce him as hers.  She’d told the boys and Ginny on July eighth, and she’d nodded when Ginny asked if it was safe to spread the word around to the rest of the family.  Mrs. Weasley was the first to approach her, and she sat Hermione down in the kitchen, banished everyone else away from the room, and, for the first time since she’d met her, Mrs. Weasley sat still, her hands curled around a mug of tea.

They sat, and they talked, and Hermione revealed everything, told her the entire story, from beginning to end, and Mrs. Weasley listened with a soft ear and a straight face.  She didn’t smile, she didn’t frown.  When she finished, the maternal redhead reached forward and grasped one of her hands.

“You love him,” she stated matter-of-factly, and Hermione just nodded, “You look like me when I first realized I loved Arthur,” she sighed, “I think you should bring him over, have him meet the family, officially.”

“Are you sure?”

“Hermione,” she laughed as she sat back, “I consider you my daughter.  If some young man has swept you off your feet, I’d like to meet him.  And, also, I think it would do well to appease all of my eavesdropping children!” she finished in a shout, glaring at the doorway, “Honestly, there’s no door, and you’re just standing there.”

“Honestly,” Ron mimicked, rolling his eyes.

He and Harry had discussed the relationship of Draco and Hermione for some time, and he seemed to be taking it rather well.  He entered the kitchen, and Hermione watched as he battled with himself before laying a hand on her shoulder.

“Malfoy, Hermione?” he grimaced.

“It’s a long story.”

“Yea, I heard it,” he laughed, “I just don’t get it.  But, I guess it’s your choice.  I’m not calling him Draco, though,” he spat, and Hermione just smiled.

“You don’t have to, Ronald.”

And, when she turned her eyes to Harry, she was most afraid.  But he just nodded, a small smile, and she noticed Ginny holding his hand.  Nothing could upset him now.

Hermione was brought back to the present as there was a knock on the door.  Her mother entered, smiling softly.

“When are we leaving?” she asked.

“In an hour.  Draco should be here soon.”

Her mother just nodded before disappearing again, and Hermione looked back at the letter once more before folding it and stowing it away on her desk.  Her parents would also be joining them for the dinner at the Burrow.  She went to dress, and she was just finishing when there was a knock downstairs.  She had donned a white skirt with layers that shortened as they reached her waist; it fell to her knees.  A turquoise, thin-strapped, shirt hugged her torso, just a solid color, and it dipped in a v, though fashionably.  She quickly pulled on black flats before lifting her jacket from her bedpost and gathering her purse, where she stowed her wand.

She could hear Draco’s voice floating up the stairs, and she smiled, hurrying down.  She followed their voices into the kitchen where her parents were gathering their things.

“Oh, Hermione,” her mother cooed, causing Draco to turn, “You look lovely.”

But her mother’s voice softened as she watched her daughter stare at Draco, and she smiled.

“Come, George,” she murmured, motioning for her husband, “Let them have their moment.”

Her parents left, and Draco let out a breath he hadn’t known that he’d been holding when he heard the door close.

“You look beautiful,” he whispered, though he smiled when she stepped into his arms, sighing into him, “I missed you.”

“You look happy,” she commented, not pulling away, “I love you.”

“I love you, Hermione,” he returned, turning her chin up so that he could kiss her, “Let’s not keep your parents waiting.”

She nodded, letting him lead the way, their fingers interlaced.  He was dressed in light jeans, a soft white button-up that he’d rolled the sleeves up, a black jacket, and black and white Converse.  She smiled at this, remembering the first time she’d noticed his casual attire, one of the first times they’d ever met.

Hermione’s parents insisted on driving to the Burrow as they were wary of apparation, and so the couple sat in the back of the car.  They stayed close, hands laced, and they chattered back and forth, making Hermione’s parents smile.  They discussed what books they’d read since they last saw one another in May, they talked of their upcoming year at Hogwarts, they discussed Draco’s mother and her recent reunion with her sister, Andromeda, and they talked all the way to the Burrow where they fell silent.

Hermione’s mother noted this, and, when she asked, Hermione sighed, “Mum, you remember me telling you about an arrogant, slimy, blonde boy from Slytherin?”

Her mother nodded, her face solemn, “That’s Draco.”

Draco smirked at this, and Hermione hit him on the arm, “Don’t be so pompous.  You were horrible when you were younger.”

“And you still fell for me,” he murmured, sneaking a kiss on her cheek before they started off.

When they reached the door, Hermione shocked her parents and Draco by simply opening the door rather than knocking and waiting.  They entered after her upon hearing someone give an exclamation of delight.

“I haven’t seen you in ages!” Ginny cried, hugging her tightly.

Draco looked around, and his father’s voice instantly crawled into his head, but he shoved it away hastily.  He noted how familial and warm this home was, and he smiled, glancing around at all the knickknacks and photos and Ginny.  She was standing in front of him, her arms crossed over her chest.

“I’m warning you, Malfoy, she better be right about you.”

Draco just nodded, though he couldn’t help arching an arrogant eyebrow at her.

“George, you know Draco.”

The tall redhead stood and extended his hand.

“Pleasure, mate,” he said softly, and Draco forced away a frown; the twin, once alive and jovial, was somber, a terrifying transformation.

“Likewise,” he returned before following a beckoning Hermione.

“Harry, you can’t just wave your wand and expect it to work!” Ron was shouting as they exited the living room and into the kitchen.

The two boys were nowhere to be seen, though Molly Weasley was busy bustling around the kitchen, a pretty blonde helping her.

“Mrs. Weasley,” Hermione greeted, pecking her on the cheek.

“Fleur, be a dear, watch the sauce,” Molly murmured before turning and enveloping Hermione in a large hug, “Dear, you look lovely.  Jean, George, so good to see you.”

She greeted each of them with a hug before turning to Draco, and her smile was still warm.

“Thank you for coming,” she said, and he was surprised as she embraced him.

He returned the affection, smiling down at her.

“Bloody tall all these boys are,” she muttered as she returned to her cooking, “Hermione, the boys are in the back, though it sounds like they could use your help.”

Harry!” Ron hollered, and Hermione laughed, waiting for Draco to join her before she went outside.

Her mother stayed behind to chat with and help Molly, though her father exited with them, instantly going over to Arthur, who greeted him enthusiastically.

“I don’t know how they ever manage without you,” Draco laughed, placing his hand on the small of Hermione’s back as they walked over.

“Honestly, I don’t either,” she grumbled, rolling her eyes.

Ron was tangled in ropes, covered in dirt, and Harry had collapsed against the table, laughter shaking through him.

“If you’d hold still,” Harry panted as his friend glared at him, “I can untangle you.”

“Last time you bloody tried that, there was dirt everywhere!”

Harry fell into another bought of hearty laughter, though Ron’s face brightened when he saw Hermione.

“’Mione,” he whined, “Help me.”

Hermione quickly undid him, rolling her eyes.  She went to hug the boys hello before turning to Draco, and she frowned at his uneasiness.

“Draco,” Harry was the first to speak, extending his hand, “Good to have you here.  I saw the Prophet the other day.  Your father seems to be doing well again.”

Draco was almost shocked into silence, but he quickly regained himself, shaking Harry’s hand and responding, “Thankfully, yes.  I’ll be going to work for him next year, when we graduate.”

“It’s a strictly magic-related business, right?” Harry asked, and their hands dropped away.

Draco nodded, “Closely affiliated to the Ministry at the moment, though that can’t be helped.  Are you still going to train to be an Auror?”

“Of course.  Ronald.”

“Malfoy,” Ron mumbled, nodding at him.

Draco returned the nod, “Thank you, Ron.”

Ron seemed confused, and Draco elaborated, “For not hexing me the moment you saw me.  It makes it a tad easier.”

Ron grunted, and Hermione sighed, “What were you two trying to do?”

“Oh, nothing,” Harry shrugged, “He was muttering on and on about how much he hated setting the table, so I tied him up to do it myself.”

Hermione laughed at this; typical Harry.

“Draco,” Arthur said, walking around the table, and he absorbed Draco’s attention as Harry went back to setting the table, Ron begrudgingly following him.

Hermione helped, and it was only when they were toward the other end of the table that Hermione looked to Harry.

“Thank you,” she whispered, and he just smiled.

“He loves you,” Harry said, shrugging and straightening, “That much is obvious.  Hermione, you’re my best friend,” he reminded, “As long as you’re happy, that’s all that matters.”

“You always were too wonderful for your own good,” she laughed, shaking her head, “I don’t know how you do it.”

“Hermione,” he tsked, “You accepted him, of all people.  It’s the least I can do.  Ronald, on the other hand, we’ll have to work on.”

“He’s a slimy git,” Ron said darkly, “And I don’t like him one bit.  I’m sorry, ‘Mione, but I just don’t understand it.”

“Half the time, I don’t either, but he makes me happy.”

She glanced over at Draco, and, as if he felt her gaze on him, he averted his eyes to smile at her before returning his attention to Arthur.  She’d never felt so lucky.

--

Disclaimer: Everything recognizable belongs to J.K. Rowling.  Lyrics from Wow belong to Snow Patrol.

Hey guys!  I just wanted to put a little note here.  So, if you haven't noticed, I've been a little absent from this site lately.  Yes, I still update regularly, but I haven't been keeping up with my reviews or my favorites.  I'm almost entirely caught up on the latter, thankfully, and I'm back into the swing of things, but I wanted to tell you why, :)

So.  If you've ever read my writing previous to this, Grazed Knees, you'd know, probably, that I write outside of fanfiction, and my ultimate goal in life is to become an author.  I write fantasy fiction, and I finished my first book in January.  Technically, I'd already written two previous to that, but I literally decided last summer that I was going to rewrite both of them.  So, I set about that goal, and it's taken me five years and three different versions, but I finally finished the first of the trilogy, The Ascension.

Naturally, you'd assume I'd take a break.  So did I.  So, when I wrote the opening scene for my second book, The Gathering, not even a month later, I was a little scared.  Well.  I've finished it, and, get this, I wrote 30 chapters in 36 days.  Uh... yea.  The only story I've been that crazy about before was this one (I wrote 22 chapters in two weeks; it was crazy).  But!  It's done, and, of course, I didn't take a break yet again, and I started the third book, The Awakening just yesterday.  It's part of a large series, The Chronicles of Kings, but I'm working on one of the trilogies first.

So, that's that!  My writing life has been a little hectic and a lot of exciting!  :D  Thank you, if you read through that whole ramble.  I'm just really pleased with myself for writing so much in so little time and it actually being really, really good.  Okay, that's all, though.  I hope you enjoyed the chapter!


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