George looked back and forth from his furious-looking little brothers to the girl clutching his arm who was obviously sporting a baby bump.
Ron felt like snapping.
Anger rose in him like the temperature on a hot day.
Several times, George tried to speak but just could not find the words to speak.
What should he say?
What could he say?
It was not like George to feel this way.
To be angry like this.
Normally all he wanted to do is joke around.
Not during this situation.
Finally Lavender broke the very awkward silence, "Well, I'm Lavender by the way. I don't suppose you remember me. Ron and I were a couple in sixth year. But I'm sure he's told you tons about me recently!" She giggled, clutching his arm even tighter, making him shrug away.
Ron wanted to scream.
And force this leech-like girl off of his arm.
He did jerk away, wanting to do so much more.
George shook his head.
It was not hard to figure out what situation these two people were in, and it made George really furious that Ron had put himself in this situation.
"No, I don't think Ron's mentioned you." George growled, glancing from Ron to Lavender's face to her bump.
The normally funny and lighthearted Weasley twin of the late Fred Weasley, was angry.
He had never been a 'player' who abused or talked down to girls.
Even if the very sight of them made him want to leave because couldn't stand them, he never mistreated or was rude to them.
But now was an exception.
He could barely see straight.
He did remember this girl.
She had nearly driven him mad by the time of her and Ron's breakup.
Lavender felt her cheeks burn scarlet.
"Oh," she said very embarrassed, glancing at Ron with furious eyes.
Ron glared at the floor, not in the least bit concerned with the fact that he angered Lavender.
"So are you two...together?" George asked, choking on the last word, praying he was wrong about what was going on.
Ron just scowled at the floor.
Once again, Lavender felt compelled to speak, breaking the silence. "Well," She put one of her hands on her growing tummy, "it's fairly recent, but I guess you could say that." she giggled, squeezing Ron's arm again which he again shrugged away from.
"Ron?" George questioned his little brother, making it obvious that Lavender was not supposed to answer.
"Yep. I guess we are." Ron growled.
The happiness from a few minutes previously was obviously gone and replaced with anger and resentment of the situation.
"Well it was nice meeting you. I'm glad I got to meet you. It's really important to me that I get to know our baby's uncles and entire family for that matter.," she squealed, "but I really must go. Goodbye." With one last wave she turned on her heel to leave.
"Oh," she said suddenly turning around and coming back to stand by Ron, "I almost forgot. Here you go." She reached in her bag and pulled out a picture that the nurse had pointed out was the baby's head.
She handed him the picture, "I knew you'd want it." she smiled, waved again, and the left.
George and Ron stood in awkward silence, neither one of them knowing what to say to the other.
"Ron I think we should really talk." George said.
Ron looked at him, trying to calm down and not blow up at him.
He was not really angry at George, he was angry at himself.
But mostly himself.
Why had he been so careless?
"Fine," he growled, "Where?" He knew it was over.
His 'little' secret was out.
"Home. The burrow. Here's not really the place to discuss something like this." George said glancing around.
Ron knew he was right.
It was embarrassing enough as is with out bringing all of St. Mungo's into it.
"Ok," Ron said, glumly.
The whole family was about to know then,
Of course Ginny probably already knew, Harry would have told her.
He would have to face his mother though: Mrs. Molly Weasley.
The howler he received during his second year was nothing compared to what this was no doubt going to be.
This 'lecture' he was about to get would be about a million times worse than that.
They apparated out of St. Mungo's with Ron praying that his mother would not be home.
Hermione walked into her office with a feeling that she had not felt in quite a while.
She was almost happy.
It felt like the drama was over.
Draco had gone along with her plan and Lavender and Ron had bought it.
She sat down at her desk and sighed a sigh of relief.
She closed her eyes, soaking up the moment.
"Hermione," Harry Potter said, walking into her office, "I..."
Hermione interrupted him.
"Harry!" She got up and ran over to him, embracing him in a colossal hug that was so tight it made it nearly impossible to breathe.
"I've missed you, Harry." She exclaimed.
"I missed you too!" he grinned, glad to see his friend at least semi happy.
"How have you been?" she asked.
"Great. Missed you though. You? How's....everything." he asked, afraid he had said too much and was hurting her, but her grin did not falter.
She looked like a little kid on Christmas morning.
"Pretty good. I've been better of course, but I'm okay. Taking it day by day, you know?" she said.
"Yeah," he replied, glad she was doing better.
"So how's everything with you and Ginny?" Hermione asked.
She needed to visit Ginny.
Even though she was not with Ron anymore, Ginny was still her best girl friend.
"Amazing. She's just incredible." He said, hearing her name made his heart beat faster.
"I'm glad," Hermione replied, "So are you two serious now?"
Harry and Ginny had been off and on since sixth year, but lately it had been a lot of fun.
"You could say that." Harry said, a grin spreading across his face.
Hermione laughed, "So I never got to the chance to ask you, had did your trip go?"
"It was amazing. We had a great time. The view from the hotel room was gorgeous, the ocean was amazing and you should have seen the places we got to visit." Harry smiled.
Hermione cocked an eyebrow, "Hotel room? It's that serious!" she giggled in delight.
Harry blushed, "Yeah, we're pretty serious, which is kind of one of the reasons I wanted to talk to you," he said, shifting nervously.
Hermione raised her eyebrows and made a face that said: Go on.
"Alright, so you know we've been dating for a while..." He began.
"Oh for Heaven's sakes! Spit it put Harry!" Hermione laughed.
Harry laughed to and reaching into his jacket pocket.
He pulled out a tiny black box.
Hermione's eyes widened.
"Hermione, if I were to propose to Ginny," Harry began, getting interrupted by Hermione's squeal, he opened the box, "do you think she would say yes?"
Inside the box was a gorgeous, huge diamond on a silver band.
He took it out of the case, inscribed on it was the words: My one and only.
It was stunning; absolutely stunning.
Hermione squealed again.
"Can I take that as a yes?" he asked, laughing and putting the case, with the ring now safely inside, back in his jacket.
Hermione nodded vigorously.
"Great," He said, preparing to leave, "Thanks a whole lot, Hermione!"
He turned to leave but then stopped suddenly, "Oh yeah," he said coming back towards her, "I forgot. This is yours. It was on my desk this morning."
He pulled out a silver envelope that had her name inscribed on the back on it in blue letters.
"Thanks Harry," she said taking the letter.
He left the room and she sat down at her desk, the envelope still in hand.
She opened the flap and pulled out, not a letter, but a picture.
On the card was a photograph of a place she knew well: The Three Broomsticks at Hogsmeade.
On the back, was note:
Hermione, I think it's time for our first 'date'. Here's a good place to start. We need to talk about some things. How about 4 p.m. tomorrow? It's time to set some rules. Draco.
Seeing his name put butterflies in her stomach.
Some of the reasons she was aware of some...not so much.
She was nervous too.
The memories from her last visit with Draco sent her heart fluttering.
Nerves set in too though, she was about to find out these 'rules' he said she was going to play by.
Knowing Draco these rules could be something easy, he might not be too hard on her.
After all, at the battle of Hogwarts they had assisted him in the way of saving his life.
That had to count for something, right?
But also, there was a flip side to Draco.
Hermione did not believe he was a bad person like so many once, and possibly still did to that day, thought.
Sure, she had acted like she hated him, with more than a passion.
But she also felt like there was something good in him.
Something not many people bothered to see.
She had not always felt this way.
Like, in their third year of school in which she punched him in the jaw.
But when she was kidnapped at Malfoy Manor (if you would call it kidnapping) she saw a different side of him.
The 'perfect' life she'd always thought he'd lived was anything but.
His father was the perfect example of why he was the way he was though.
Hermione suddenly caught herself, coming back to where she was.
Had she really just been thinking about Draco?
That was a sill question though the answer was yes: ever since he had kissed her, he was the only thing making recurring appearances in her brain.
She was certainly not falling for him.
She didn't even know him.
She put the card back on her desk, determined to finally get back to work.
This had been a strange few days.
What had she gotten herself into?
Tomorrow at 4 P.M. she was going to officially begin her fake life.
The pressure was enough to drive any one mad.
Besides...what would she wear?
She rolled her eyes at herself.
She had hardly ever freaked out like this with Ron.
Why was it different now?
What made this date different from the thousands of dates she and Ron had been on?
This thought forced a stabbing pain in her heart.
Back when they went on dates.
Back when they were a couple.
Back before Lavender showed up and ruined everything.
She hated to admit it, but she still loved Ron.
She wasn't in love with him anymore...not after the Lavender thing, but when you've known and cared for someone for over ten years, you can not quit caring about them overnight, no matter what horrible thing they've done or how bad they've hurt you.
The memories made her want to cry.
The ache in her heart burned.
Sometimes she was fine.
Like earlier, when she was with Harry, but now she was having a moment.
But at least she had her date to look forward to.
If she even was supposed to look forward to it.
'Gosh, the older you get the more complicated life gets.' Hermione thought.
Given the events from the past couple weeks, she could not have been more right.