Hermione woke up on the Monday before her wedding (which was to be on a Saturday) in high spirits. Today the official wedding invitations would be sent out and she was planning her hen night at The Burrow over dinner with all the women, while Draco planned his stag night at the mansion. Jumping out of bed she pulled on a dressing gown and left her room, running into Draco as she did so.
“Good morning,” Draco grinned. Hermione grinned back and tiptoed up so she could give him a kiss.
“Good morning to you too,” Hermione grinned.
“What’s on the agenda for today then?” Draco asked as he took Hermione’s hand and started walking towards the stairs that lead downstairs.
“We’re sending out the wedding invitations and then we are planning our hen and stag nights,” Hermione reeled off. Draco nodded as he remembered what they had planned.
After breakfast Hermione got dressed she then levitated the envelopes and invitations down the hall to the new ballroom where Draco was lying spread-eagled on some bean bags Hermione had convinced him to buy.
“Got them?” Draco asked without looking up from the long list his mother had created for him.
“Yup, I don’t think there will be any way to get this done quicker other than splitting them between us or one of us write the invitation and the other write the envelopes. The only reason we have so many is because you have so many purebloods that must come,” Hermione said as she rolled her eyes. Draco grinned and then pulled her close to him kissing her forehead.
“Sorry baby,” Draco murmured.
“You better be,” Hermione growled before she grinned at Draco and sat herself down next to him. “So how do you want to do this?” Draco pondered for a second and then took the invitation list and cast a severing charm through the middle of it, causing it to split in half. He then gave the half containing her friends to Hermione and took the other half.
“Ready?” Draco asked. Hermione sighed as she flopped herself on the floor and took up her quill.
“Yup,” Hermione said as she pulled the list closer.
Three hours later Hermione and Draco threw down their quills and massaged their hands tiredly.
“Never again,” Draco growled.
“Nope, never,” Hermione sighed before she stood up and levitated the stacks of envelopes to the floo in the ballroom.
“You’re going to floo them?” Draco asked.
“Yeah, otherwise we’ll kill our owls,” Hermione answered as she took the floo pot off the shelf. Draco took the floo powder from her hands and helped throw the powder as Hermione worked her magic on each envelope so it would know its destination.
It took only half an hour to post the envelopes and when that was done Hermione stood up and stretched looking at the clock.
“Molly invited us to dinner today? Do you want to come?” Hermione asked as she accioed her quill and ink from the floor. Draco stood up and stretched as he pondered.
“I might join Mother and Carlos for dinner to be honest, I haven’t graced my family with my presence for a while and she’ll start snapping at me if I don’t show my face soon. But you have a good time honey,” Draco smirked. Hermione smiled back before she kissed his cheek and hurried off upstairs to change from her joggers into jeans. Minutes later Hermione kissed goodbye to Draco and apparated to The Burrow.
Molly answered the door with her usual beaming smile but she also seemed worried and Hermione didn’t have long to find out why. As soon as she stepped over the threshold Ron emerged at the bottom of the stairs. Hermione went to turn on her heel and leave but Ron’s voice stopped her.
“If you leave before dinner my mom will kill me… Surely we can survive one dinner in each other’s presence Hermione,” Ron spoke. Hermione froze and the faced him, crossing her arms over her chest.
“I can Ronald, but can you?” Hermione asked. Her words setting a challenge and her tone hinting at every possibility of his failure and Ron heard it and interpreted it correctly.
“I’ll behave myself, if you do,” Ron growled before he marched back up the stairs.
Letting out a calming breath Hermione walked into the kitchen to find the rest of the family nervously sitting around. Molly was the first one to step forwards.
“I’m sorry I didn’t warn you, he turned up this morning and asked if he could spend the day, apparently he’s had a falling out with Astoria, there was not much that I could say… He’s my son,” Molly said with her demeanour both sad and fierce at the same time. Hermione shrugged.
“I can’t ask you to turn him away, I can only ask him to be civil while we’re in the same house for everyone else’s sake,” Hermione said softly. Molly smile thankfully and hurried off to start dinner while Hermione took a chair next to Ginny.
“How’re you Mione?” Ginny asked.
“Nervous. Where’s Harry?” Hermione asked as she realised that he wasn’t there.
“Upstairs… They’re trying to work things out for me,” Ginny answered as she worried her lip. Hermione sighed with relief.
“Good. It’s not fair to you if they keep arguing,” Hermione murmured.
“Hermione I’ll be serving dinner in a couple of hours are you sure you don’t want to go out and play some quidditch or something?” Molly asked as she looked nervously towards the door.
“Honestly Molly it’s…”
“Hi everyone!” Astoria suddenly cut in loudly. Hermione stopped her sentence cold and looked around to be met by blonde bombshell Astoria Weasley.
“What’s she doing here?” Astoria asked rudely.
“Hermione is here as my guest and you would do well to be pleasant to her or out the door you will go missy. Ronald is upstairs,” Molly said fiercely. Astoria sniffed and then turned on her heel and left the kitchen to head upstairs. Hermione rolled her eyes and stood up.
“Anyone up for some three on three quidditch?” Hermione asked as she picked up her old broom from the broom cupboard. George and Ginny whooped, Luna grinned happily and Angelina rushed off to get Harry.
Hermione walked outside on her own with her broom and mounted it as soon as she could, taking off into the air and letting out a breath that she hadn’t realised she’d held. Quidditch had given her this feeling of calm ever since after the war when she realised shortly after that she needed a new type of distraction. Ginny joined her soon after and Hermione wordlessly challenged her to a race, tightening her hands on her broom handle and shooting forwards heading for the quidditch area that the Weasley children had used.
“You’re cheating Granger, you had a head start!” Ginny yelled.
“You’re just jealous you’re not as fast Potter,” Hermione yelled back over her shoulder.
Harry suddenly appeared in front of her and Hermione had to loop quickly over him to avoid a collision.
“HARRY JAMES POTTER WHAT THE HELL DO YOU THINK YOU’RE DOING?!” Hermione screamed after him as he laughed and zoomed off. Hermione sighed and then continued to the pitch where Ginny and Harry were chuckling in mid-air.
“You two are the very reason why Slytherins seem to think Gryffindors are all stupid and hot headed,” Hermione sighed as she pulled her broom to a stop in the air. Harry just grinned and Ginny shrugged.
When the rest of the players joined the pitch a hard match started. Hermione was playing seeker against Harry and she had to concentrate doubly hard to track him, track the snitch and calculate ways to stop him from getting to the snitch because he was on a faster broom and a flat out sprint to the snitch would end in him winning.
Three times in the first half an hour of the match Hermione had to cut across the pitch to block Harry’s path to the snitch, and each time she did so he had to swerve to avoid her and she smirked at him as he glared at her. Down below, Ginny was proving the reason why she deserved to be a chaser for the Holyhead Harpies and putting away almost double the amount of goals that Angelina did. Hermione knew that if she didn’t catch the snitch soon they would lose even if she did catch it.
So turning her broom sharply around in the air she first spotted Harry circling the pitch looking for the snitch and then started to look around for it herself, knowing that she had the advantage of better eyesight than Harry.
Once or twice she thought she spotted the snitch but it was just a reflection off a broom or off a watch. Then with only three goals to Harry’s team before they won even without the snitch, left Hermione heard it behind her and she glimpsed Harry at the other end of the pitch. Twisting the broom quickly she raced after the snitch watching it plummet into a steep dive and calling on all her Gryffindor Courage she followed without thinking and stretched out her hand catching it three metres away from Harry, who had followed her down, and pulling out of the dive 10 metres above the ground. The rest of the team heard the chime that rang over the pitch when the snitch was caught and looked around for the victorious seeker, and when they realised it was Hermione everyone but Ginny gasped.
Hermione landed neatly with the snitch still in her hand and shouldered her broom as Harry landed next to her.
“Good game Mione,” Harry grinned as he patted her on the shoulder.
“Thanks Harry, you too.” Harry grimaced and Hermione frowned. “What?”
“I don’t consider a good game for me a game where I lost. If I lose it means I need more practise,” Harry said in a matter of fact way. Hermione shook her head.
“You need to practise thinking on the move. Skill wise Harry, you would outshine me in every way, you’ve had like almost a decade of practise. I just use your disadvantages to my advantages and figure out ways to stop you catching the snitch first,” Hermione grinned secretively. Harry sighed and then pushed Hermione lightly, making her stagger to the side slightly.
“Such a bloody know-it-all,” Harry then murmured indulgently. Hermione debated casting a light curse on him but then laughed.
“And don’t you forget it,” Hermione chuckled.
Back inside Hermione took a shower and changed into some clothes that she had left in Ginny’s room for such occasions, but as she was leaving her room, she almost bumped into Ron and Astoria, missing them only because Ron and Hermione were both used to jumping out the way of opening doors or jumping to the side when they stepped out into the thin corridor.
“Hermione?” Ron questioned. Hermione raised her eyebrow.
“Yes Ronald?” Hermione asked. Ron just frowned and kept walking, taking Astoria’s hand as he headed towards the stairs.
Downstairs Ron held onto Astoria like she would run off and Hermione didn’t doubt that she would try if the Weasley rabble became too much for her pampered Pureblood mind-set. Seeing the way he held her made Hermione roll her eyes. During their short relationship she had noticed that Ron liked to hold onto her and occasionally walk as if he was parading her around. With Ron it was almost like she was a trophy and she would always be a trophy and afterwards she realised she would stay at home, cook, clean and only ever look after his kids if she was to marry him. She was glad she got out of that before that happened and now he has Astoria to parade around like the trophy wife she really was, but if he wanted her to lift a finger towards cooking, it would never happen, because when Molly called for help with dinner, every woman and even some of the men in the room found themselves in the kitchen, but not Astoria, she sniffed at the very idea of helping.
Although the evening Hermione spent at the burrow was pleasant Hermione felt like it was tainted by Ron’s and Astoria’s presence. Ron seemed determined to flaunt Astoria to Hermione at every possible moment and although Hermione felt nothing in the way of jealousy and sadness, she did find it extremely annoying, until the final time when he tried it at the dinner table.
“RONALD I DON’T GIVE TWO FLYING FUCKS WHAT MAGAZINE ASTORIA MODELS UNDERWEAR IN!” Hermione suddenly screamed at him when Ron asked her what she thought of Astoria’s underwear modelling. Ron looked shocked and then held his hands up while a silence deep enough to hear a pin drop enveloped the table.
“Calm down Hermione there is no need to talk like that,” Ron said sarcastically. “I mean anyone would think you were jealous,” Ron finished. The table seemed to sigh while Astoria drew herself up in her seat and draped herself over Ron.
“Astoria, you can compose yourself, I am not jealous of you because I do not give a shit about your husband. He’s a lying, backstabbing, controlling bastard who I will be glad to see the back of whenever he heads back to whatever dark hole he crawled out of,” Hermione said icily. Astoria’s mouth dropped open as Ron’s ears reddened.
“How dare you,” Ron snarled.
“How dare I? How dare you come back and make everyone’s life a misery,” Hermione replied, her tone still icy.
“Don’t you dare talk to my husband like that,” Astoria said shrilly, standing up abruptly. Hermione stood up to face Astoria with her face a perfectly cool pureblood mask, hiding all the anger that simmered inside her.
“I don’t think this is a conversation to be had at the dinner table Mrs Weasley. Would you like to follow me?” Hermione said quietly as she stepped away from her chair. Astoria stepped back in shock before she composed her face into a pureblood mask and nodded and followed Hermione to the living room
“I’m coming with you,” Ron growled as he pushed away from the table and followed after the women.
When inside the living room Hermione turned on her heel to face the couple with a mask as hard as Narcissa’s.
“Astoria I will talk to your husband in any way I like. I have known Ronald for almost a decade which may I point out is an enormously long time compared to two years you have known him for. Now tell me. What did Lord Greengrass think when his youngest daughter, who was supposed to marry a pureblood who was in his eyes of good stock with good money, ran off with a wizard who he once called a Blood traitor and probably still does?” Hermione asked. She saw a flicker of alarm in Astoria’s face before she controlled her features into a weaker mask.
“What my father thinks is of absolutely no concern to you, but I am curious as to how you, “The Brains” of the golden trio, and a muggle-born ugly witch to boot, came to be engaged to the richest man in the wizarding world? A man who tormented you throughout school and fought on the opposite side of the war to yourself?” Astoria fired back in an equally calm voice. Hermione cracked a sinister smile.
“Because, clearly everything I possess is much better and much more appealing than the previous betrothal, a betrothal he broke off as soon as his father died in his cell,” Hermione smirked. She was the only one who had knowledge of the betrothal besides Draco and the father of the girl, and Draco had given her permission to use the knowledge to her advantage if she needed to.
“Draco was betrothed to Pansy Zabini, who is one of your friends, is she not… I’m sure she’ll be glad to hear you speak of yourself as better than her,” Astoria said in mock shock. Hermione smiled softly.
“Lucius Malfoy struck up many betrothals for Draco in case some fell through, three to be precise. Pansy Parkinson, a French girl and another girl,” Hermione paused just to check Astoria’s face and she could see a light of curiosity in her eyes. “Why don’t you sit down Astoria” Hermione said calmly as she sat down in a chair apparently calm. Astoria sat down sharply and Hermione smiled.
“Pansy Parkinson, as you know went her own way and married Blaise Zabini shortly after the war ended and Draco and Pansy, who were now old enough to manage their own betrothal, cancelled it. That left the French girl but after discovering that Draco’s family had been on the wrong side of the war her father broke the betrothal before Draco ever laid eyes on her. The next betrothal appeared just after Ginny’s wedding and he ripped it up, removing all traces of it every being there because that betrothal was a special one. It was one made in such a way that it could annul all marriage bonds. That betrothal was to the youngest Greengrass sister,” Hermione said softly. Astoria’s mouth fell open and Hermione sat back in satisfaction.
“What?” Astoria eventually said.
“Draco found a betrothal in the Malfoy Vaults that was signed in the blood of Lucius Malfoy and Lord Greengrass, stating that the youngest daughter of Lord Greengrass was to marry the only son and heir of Lucius Malfoy, regardless of marriages that may already be in play on both sides. Normally a contract like that can’t be annulled, but because Lucius Malfoy is dead, the handling of the form passed to Draco himself and he destroyed it, releasing himself. Draco never wanted to marry you in fact he told me that he’d turned you down numerous times through the years. So why should I be jealous of you Astoria, when I have the man you originally wanted, and a man who will respect my individuality and allow me to grow as a person and not make me stay on his arm like a trophy wife and just cook, clean and have kids for him?” Hermione said calmly. Ron suddenly laughed.
“You think Malfoy will want you to have individuality? You think he won’t want you as a trophy wife, will you listen to yourself. From Malfoy’s point of view, he fought on the wrong side of the war and managed to catch The Brains of the golden trio, it’s his greatest win yet. Your name is being slandered by muggleborns everywhere and you are now seen as a traitor. Compared to Astoria Hermione, your name means nothing anymore,” Ron said with a grin of satisfaction. Hermione looked at him and blinked.
“My name means a heck of a lot more than Astoria Weasley. There are plenty more people out there calling Astoria a thieving little blood traitor than there are people calling me a traitor. Because if the rumours are true Astoria left the Greengrass household with the share of her father’s money that she would have had if she had married into one of the betrothal contracts her father had set up, and married the poor son of a family considered to be blood traitors. Ron you have no argument here, and Astoria knows it, look at her face,” Hermione said calmly. Ron looked sharply at Astoria who had let her emotionless mask drop and be replaced by one of horror. It appeared that she had finally understood what she had given up for spite and apparent fame. Fame had been cancelled out as soon as Harry and Hermione had given their account of events that revealed Ron leaving Harry and Hermione during the war for home comforts. And the spite she held against Hermione because she was famous had only come back to bite her now she knew that she could have married Draco Malfoy and would never have to work a day in her life.
“Ron I need you to understand that I don’t care about you, I don’t care about Astoria and you certainly won’t make me jealous with your relationship. I have a fiancé who loves me, and wants me to be successful for myself. He doesn’t need me to stay at home and cook and clean because he has enough money to pay for house elves to work for him, and he certainly doesn’t want me to be a trophy wife, staying at home and having kids for him, which is what you want for Astoria. So I wish you good luck with your life and hope that I never have to see or speak to you after today,” Hermione spoke softly. All her anger left her as she looked at the fail of a couple in front of her. Then she stood up and went to walk back into the kitchen to finish her dinner but as she reached the door Astoria cleared her throat. Turning around Astoria was stood by the floo with a smile on her face.
“Draco doesn’t love you Hermione. Draco doesn’t love anyone but himself, he never has. So I wish you good luck with your life and have a good wedding,” Astoria said peevishly. Hermione simply smiled.
“Wanna bet?” Hermione smirked then she walked through the door closing it behind her and faced the expectant faces of the Weasleys.
I hope you guys are still reading, didn’t get very many reviews or the last chapter, despite the fact there was a better update time. However I’ve now finished the story and it’s just going to be a case of uploading now the queue is back open :)
Annyywaaayyysss!!! How do you guys feel about the exit of Ron and Astoria from the story? I’m not sure whether I did it justice or not, but I wanted to give Hermione a chance to show how she deals with a born and bred pureblood.
I think my author’s notes will be slightly shorter for the remaining chapters because the story is finished now. But I hope you enjoyed the story and Pleaseeeeeee leave me reviews!! Hope you enjoyed this chapter and hope to see you in the next :)