I know it's been ages, but I've always felt there was something missing... So here's an epilogue to the story, set about five years later, and it's called...
Happily Ever After
"You think we should what?" Hermione's voice was fairly dripping with incredulousness, and Draco sighed internally. This was not going to be easy.
"Get married." Raising his hand to silence her protests, he threw an imploring glance at Harry who ignored him, intent on balancing a spoonful of pureed carrot into little Sam's mouth. Which was quite a challenge, as Draco knew from experience. Clearly, he would have to fight this battle alone.
He returned his attention to Hermione. "Hear me out? Please?" When she grudgingly nodded, he exhaled slowly, trying to collect his thoughts. "It's just… I can't help thinking that our lives would be so much easier."
"Easier how? We'll be back in the news the moment we announce it. Do you really want to explain our choices to the world all over again?" Hermione shook her head. "They've only just begun to lose interest."
"All right, maybe not easier, but…" Draco sighed. "I don't know. Neater. We wouldn't have to make a huge fuss about it, as far as I'm concerned. But if anything should happen to me, you and Sam would be safe."
"We are perfectly safe right now." Hermione's face had settled into an all too familiar stubborn expression. "I don't see anything threatening us, do you?"
"Oh, damn it. You know what I mean." Draco had a hard time hiding his irritation. "His inheritance-"
"We've done all the paperwork. He's officially yours. Not that it isn't completely obvious anyway." Hermione ran her hand gently through Sam's fine silver blond hair, then returned to glaring at him. "Your mother has been badgering you again, right?"
Draco didn't bother to deny it. For months now, Narcissa had been on his case, trying to convince him that he had to make things official. "House Malfoy needs a proper heir to carry on the family name. It's bad enough that his mother is-" Draco had cut her off there, before she had said anything that couldn't be unsaid, but he gritted his teeth at the memory. "Look, all I'm saying-"
"Does she still insist on calling him Scorpius?" Hermione's tone could have cut glass.
"It's his middle name," Draco pointed out wearily. Narcissa had been appalled at their choice of name for the kid, and in order to keep the peace, they had finally conceded that she could add a name of her choice. "You know it's important to her. Naming children after constellations is a Black family tradition."
"I still don't see why we couldn't have called him Sirius," Harry threw in, without taking his eyes off the spoon. "That would have been a nice compromise."
Of course, Harry's intervention only served to make Hermione even angrier. "Oh, come on, Harry! As if the Blacks wanted to be reminded of their black sheep. Besides…" She gazed fondly at her son who had succeeded in covering both his shirt and the high chair entirely in orangey goo. "Sam is his own person, not the second edition of your godfather. Who, by the way, would have been a terrible role model."
Harry snorted, but wisely refused to be drawn further into the discussion.
Draco sighed, wearily rubbing his eyes. "Look, can we forget about my mum for a moment?" Taking Hermione's hand, he pulled her into his lap, breathing a kiss on her cheek. "This isn't about her. It's about us. I want to marry you. I want everyone to know I'm here for you and Sam. And Harry," he added, smiling apologetically at the other man.
"But that's just it. What about Harry?" Hermione's expression had softened a little, but there was a deep furrow between her eyebrows. "He's as much part of this family as the rest of us."
"Absolutely." Draco raised both hands in a defensive gesture. "And if I could, I'd marry you both, but-"
"I can be your best man." Harry had finally given up his attempts to feed the baby and was grinning at both of them. "Suits me fine."
"Harry!" Hermione rolled her eyes at him. "Can you please be serious for a moment?"
"I am." Harry got to his feet and carefully manoeuvred Sam out of his high chair. "Really, 'Mione, I don't mind. I trust Draco. I'd trust him with my life. And I know he wants me, just as much as you." The heated look he threw Draco would probably have been far more enticing if he hadn't been covered in spit-up carrots. "This will be good for Sam, you know. If his parents are married-"
"But what if we have another baby? What if the next one's yours?" Hermione sounded agitated. "Won't that change things?"
"Maybe." Harry shrugged. "We'll cross that bridge, when we come to it. For now, you have my blessing. If you want it."
Hermione took a deep breath, but before she could launch into another rant, Draco silenced her by pulling her into a long, lingering kiss. When they parted for air, she looked flushed, but still determined. "You're not distracting me with sex this time."
"Such a pity." Draco grinned, remembering their last little squabble, when that particular tactic had been a resounding success. "But really, love. This is important to me. If you insist, I'll even get a ring, go down on my knees, the whole nine yards, but-"
"Merlin, no!" She looked so scandalized that he had to bite back a chuckle. "You know how I hate that kind of thing."
"I won't, then. But please…" He kissed her again, just a teasing peck on her lips this time. "Please think about it. Will you?"
"All right." Freeing herself from his embrace, she got to her feet and reached for the baby, settling him on her hip in a smooth, practiced move. "I will. But I'm not making any promises."
Not yet. Draco felt a smile spread across his face. He was sure he would convince her eventually. He was a Slytherin, after all.
I can't believe he actually convinced her. Harry had to fight the urge to shake his head as he let his gaze wander over the witches and wizards assembled in the rose garden at Malfoy Manor. A wedding, with all the trappings. No one but Draco could have persuaded Hermione to give it a shot.
Next to him, Neville cleared his throat. "Wow. I never thought I'd see all these people get together for a party again in my lifetime. But everyone seems to be having a good time. Congratulations, Harry."
"Don't jinx it." Harry grinned. "The party's not over yet. But yeah, so far, they're all behaving. Makes for a nice change."
Neville did have a point, though. The term 'mixed company' had certainly never been more applicable than today.
In one corner of the garden, Narcissa Malfoy was holding court, surrounded by her closest friends and admirers. Harry recognised Mrs Parkinson and her daughter Pansy, and a tall, dark lady that had to be Mrs Zabini. Blaise and his wife were there, too, though Jessica didn't seem to enjoy her mother-in-law's company very much.
On the other side, as far away from them as possible, was what Harry had secretly dubbed 'the Gryffindor table'. It featured the familiar assortment of Weasley redheads and their spouses, as well as Andromeda Tonks and her grandson Teddy, plus most of their friends from Hogwarts. Hermione's parents and the few other muggles they had invited had their own table right next to them. They looked vaguely dazed and overwhelmed.
In between those two poles, various members of the other wizarding families were milling around. Since most of them were related to both Harry and the Malfoys, they at least didn't seem to feel the urge to take sides. One person was conspicuously absent, though. Lucius Malfoy had refused to take part in what he'd termed 'the decline and fall of a once noble house'.
"Where's Lucius?" Neville seemed to have read his mind.
"Hiding away in his cottage, as usual." Harry shrugged. "Can't say I'm sad about it. I wouldn't have enjoyed his company anyway."
Neville nodded quietly. "I don't blame you. Must be tough for Draco, though."
"Yeah, well. That's just the way it is." Harry swallowed. He was well aware that Draco would hate to be pitied by Neville, of all people, but he himself was sincerely touched by his friend's concern. "See you later, Neville." Getting to his feet, he headed over to the main table to join the bride and groom.
As he approached them, he felt his heartbeat speed up. Hermione looked utterly lovely in her dress and Draco was just as delectable in his dark suit that matched Harry's. Even Sam, who had fallen asleep in his stroller, was all dressed up in an embroidered white romper.
Harry was rather looking forward to seeing the pictures they'd taken this afternoon, all four of them together and in various combinations, set against the backdrop of the Manor's luscious gardens and tastefully furnished rooms: Hermione sitting in the library, with Sam on her lap, reading the tales of Beedle the Bard to him; Draco and Harry kissing under an old oak tree; both of them embracing Hermione, with Sam playing at their feet… Even if there was no way for them to make their unconventional family official in the eyes of the law, those pictures would tell the real story of what had happened today. And who knows, maybe Hermione will dig up some forgotten statute one day that allows for polygamous marriages. Or she'll just keep pestering the Ministry until they give in.
Hermione and Draco were busy chatting to George and his boyfriend, a cute blond Quidditch player he'd hooked up with a while ago. When he saw Harry approach, George's face lit up in a wide grin. "Harry! Where have you been hiding? We're all waiting for your speech."
"No speech." Harry categorically shook his head. "Sorry, guys, but that would just be too weird."
"Aw, what a shame." George gave him a cheery wink. "I was hoping for some dirt on Malfoy here. You know, embarrassing stag night anecdotes, naughty jokes about the wedding night, the lot."
"Ugh, no thanks." Hermione made a face. "I can't possibly imagine anything worse."
"My sentiments exactly." Draco nodded. "Besides, I'm afraid you'd be disappointed. Our stag night was cancelled because Sam was running a fever. As for embarrassing stories… everybody here knows all our dirty secrets already. And since Harry is going to spend our wedding night with us, he's hardly in a position to joke about it either."
Harry nearly choked on his drink. He hadn't expected Draco to be quite so straightforward about their plans for the night.
Then again, George clearly didn't mind. "Good point. You know, Malfoy, you've really loosened up. You might not be so bad after all."
"Thank you." Draco's tone was dry as old parchment. "I'll take it as a compliment, even though it's coming from a Gryffindor."
"Feel free." George's grin widened. "Still, you know…" He elbowed Hermione lightly in the ribs. "Mrs Hermione Malfoy. I don't believe it."
"Hermione Granger Malfoy," she corrected him, and Harry grinned at her pedantic tone.
It had been a long discussion. Draco had insisted on Sam taking his name, at the very least, and in the end, he'd persuaded Hermione that things would be easier if she had the same last name as her son. Lucius and Narcissa hadn't been happy about the double name thing, but since they couldn't do anything about it either way, their opinion hardly mattered. And Harry was fine with it. Some part of him vaguely wondered whether there would ever be any kids to carry on his own name, but all things considered, it wasn't really that important to him. He knew well enough how much of a burden the name Potter could be. Maybe his kids would be better off without it.
"It will all take some getting used to it," was all he said aloud. "But hey, we can handle it, I guess."
"I'm sure you can." George's face turned serious for a moment. "Congratulations, guys. I'm really happy for you." And already the suggestive grin was back. "And I bet that wedding night is going to be epic."
"Hey, what's the matter?" Harry pulled Draco into a loose embrace. "Anything wrong? Too many Weasleys, maybe? Though really, they were on their best behaviour today."
They were finally alone, in the big master bedroom at Malfoy Manor, having disapparated from the party among cheers and fireworks. Hermione was more relieved than she could say. Some part of her still couldn't believe that they had managed to pull the whole thing off without a glitch, let alone a full-blown scandal.
"Oh, shut up!" Draco gave Harry a half-hearted shove. "It was all good. I just miss Sam."
"Yeah, me, too." Harry pulled him closer, and Hermione smiled at the sight of them. So much tenderness, and at the same time, she could already feel the tension building underneath. "But I'm sure he's doing great. You know he adores Ginny."
"And she definitely has a lot of practice handling kids," Hermione added dryly.
Ginny's twin boys, Felix and Godric, were almost three years old and a proper handful. If she was honest, Hermione couldn't fathom how Ginny was going to handle an additional kid, even with Matt's help. But her offer to take care of Sam had been simply too tempting to say no. And after all, there would probably be plenty of Weasley uncles around to help, should the need arise. "They'll be fine."
It was partly an attempt to convince herself, but Hermione was glad to see Draco relax a little, too. He adored Sam, and he had taken to fatherhood like a duck to water. Since the boy's birth, they hadn't spent a single night without him sleeping next door, so this felt weird for them all.
"Tonight is just for us." Harry's hands had begun a slow, thorough exploration of Draco's upper body, and Hermione felt a tingle spread in her belly. Just for us. Much as she loved her baby, she had missed this in the past few months: the three of them, making love, undisturbed and uninhibited.
"That sounds lovely." Stepping closer, she began to undo the buttons on Draco's shirt, one by one, savouring the way he shivered under her touch.
It was almost a pity to undress him, really. He looked so very good in a suit. Still, when the shirt finally came off, she moaned happily. So much pale smooth skin, and all of it hers to caress. Harry seemed to feel much the same, judging from the way his hands tightened on Draco's chest.
Draco made a small, needy noise. "We have to get you out of that dress. Now."
"Agreed." Reluctantly, Harry let go of him and moved over behind her to get started on the little hooks down her back. "Much as I like it on you, I prefer you naked. Or at least less wrapped up."
"I agree." Draco leant in to nibble on her bare shoulder. "You're so beautiful."
Hermione closed her eyes, enjoying their attentions to the full. She hadn't wanted a dress at first, and certainly not a white one, but Draco had been patient. And when they'd finally found this one, a blush-coloured princess gown with a full, wide skirt and a tight, pearl-encrusted bodice, she had fallen in love with it at first sight. It had been fun to dress up for once, allowing everyone to fuss about her hair and make-up. Still, by now she was about ready to get out of the dress.
With a swishing noise, the fabric pooled at her feet, and she gingerly stepped out of it. Harry carefully stowed the dress away, while Draco ran his finger along the lacy edge of her bra with a pleased hum. "Now what?"
Harry was back, having ditched his own shirt, and she leaned into his embrace, savouring his warmth. A whole night, just for us. Both men were looking expectantly at her, and she took a deep breath. What now, indeed. "Well… You remember that fantasy of mine I told you about, years ago?"
Harry inhaled sharply. "The one where we both-" He laughed, sounding suddenly breathless. "Of course I remember. But… are you really sure you want that? Because back then you said-"
"I know. But that was then." Hermione nodded, feeling a blush rise to her cheeks. "And yes, I'm sure. I mean, this seems like the perfect occasion, doesn't it?"
To have them both at the same time. It had been one of her most cherished fantasies for years, and yet she had never dared to make it true. But tonight… She still had her misgivings, of course, but she'd watched the two of them make love countless times by now, and she knew they were both skilled and gentle. Besides, ever since she'd given birth to Sam, she'd felt… more robust, somehow, less fragile, where sex was concerned. She had a lot more confidence in her body's ability to handle whatever her men could come up with.
Draco hadn't said anything so far, but Merlin, the way he was looking at her! His eyes had gone pitch dark, and there was look of intense focus on his face that nearly made her moan aloud. Oh yes. He wants it, too.
"So how…" Draco cleared his throat. "How do we do this?" He cupped her right breast with one hand, tracing the outline of her nipple through the lace.
Hermione whimpered softly. How could she possibly be so turned on already? The mere thought of what they were about to do was making her shiver all over. "Harry?" Instinctively she looked to him for help. "Any suggestions?"
He shrugged, trying to sound casual, but she wasn't fooled. There was the tiniest tremor in his voice, and his eyelids were fluttering. "Let's get naked and move over to the bed."
"Sounds like a good start." Hermione felt a nervous little giggle rise in her throat, and did her best to suppress it. "Do we need-"
"I've got this. Don't worry." Harry exchanged a quick look with Draco and the two shared a smile.
Moments later, their remaining clothes were gone and they settled on the bed. Harry was digging around in the nightstand for lube and a condom, but Draco didn't waste any time. Pulling her into his arms, he kissed her hungrily. And it felt good, so good, but at the same time, she was the teensiest bit tense, and when Harry joined them, he noticed it immediately.
"'Mione. We don't have to go through with this, if you're having second thoughts." He sounded adorably serious. "Right, Draco?"
Draco nodded, but Hermione wasn't fooled. He'd be disappointed, and rightly so. After all, she had been the one to bring the whole thing up. And she was still determined. "No second thoughts. I want you. Both of you." She took a deep breath. "I'm just nervous."
Harry looked thoughtful. "Hmmm… Let me see." Sliding off the bed, he made his way across the room to the music system Draco had installed at their instigation. "There. That should help."
Soft jazz music began to play, something old-fashioned – Duke Ellington, maybe? Either way, Hermione felt herself gradually relax. Draco was still holding her, kissing her gently, and now Harry snuggled in behind her, embracing her and breathing kisses on her neck. They knew her so well, both of them, and she trusted them with all her heart.
And they understood each other without words. At precisely the same moment, their caresses changed from tender to sensual, Draco's kisses getting more insistent while Harry cupped her breast from behind and pinched her nipple lightly. She moaned into Draco's mouth, and they both ground against her, both of them more than half hard already.
"You feel so good." Draco's mouth found her breasts at the same time as Harry's hand wandered lower, parting her legs with assurance.
And it felt so amazing, the way they were stimulating all her sensitive spots at once, hands and lips and teeth everywhere. When Draco finally abandoned her breasts, and slid between her legs, she was impossibly wet already. But he seemed to be in no hurry. Lifting her leg and placing it on his shoulder, he got to work, slowly and methodically, his lips and tongue exploring every single inch of her with a thoroughness that made her gasp.
She was so distracted by Draco's efforts that she hardly noticed Harry reaching for the lube and a condom. His touch barely registered with her until he slipped a slick finger inside her, and even then, it seemed so natural, so logical that she didn't even flinch. Twisting around a little, she managed to catch Harry's mouth, and he kissed her deeply, drinking her sighs from her lips like nectar.
"I love you so much." His voice was deep and hoarse, much deeper than usual, and he was trembling with want.
But he remained patient and thorough, stretching and caressing her until she was ready to beg. And when he finally, carefully pushed inside her, she was so relaxed and eager that it didn't hurt a bit. Still, the angle wasn't perfect and it took him a moment until he was fully lodged inside her, spooning her with his body, embracing her tightly from behind. He stopped at that point, and Hermione was grateful. She felt… full and stretched and everything was so very tight already.
And yet, she wanted Draco, too, she needed him. He had moved up to kiss her again, and she could feel him hard against her thigh, so very eager to take her. "May I?" His voice was barely a whisper as he lifted her upper leg.
Hermione nodded, unable to speak, and then he was there, slowly entering her, inch by careful inch, and it was… She bit her lip hard, but there was no way to stop a long, low whine from escaping her throat.
Draco froze in motion. "Are you okay?" He sounded genuinely worried.
"I'm fine. Just… overwhelmed." She swallowed hard.
"Me, too." He shifted a little and moaned, deep in his throat. "Damn it, Harry, is that you? Your-"
"Yeah." Harry's voice was shaky. "Merlin's balls, I didn't …" He exhaled sharply, but he didn't say more, just gripped her hips tightly, burying his face between her shoulder blades.
For what seemed like an eternity, neither Harry nor Draco moved, and Hermione couldn't really do much herself, wedged in between them as she was. But that was fine, that was perfect, because she needed time to adjust to this, to all the new sensations, to the sheer intensity of it. Finally, Draco lifted his head and smiled at her, almost shyly. And then he slowly rolled his hips, pulling back just a little and thrusting back in. They moaned in unison, all three of them.
"Harry?" Draco sounded raw, and his eyes were feverish.
"Yes." And now it was Harry's turn to move, slowly but insistently, and she felt it all the way up her spine. It was almost too much, and yet she didn't want it to end, ever.
They took turns moving, careful not to hurt her, and Hermione was glad for it. After all, neither of them was exactly small. But as they picked up speed, their deliberate rhythm faltered a little, until suddenly they both pushed inside her at the same time, hard and deep. Involuntarily, she cried out and they immediately stopped, but that wasn't what she wanted, so she urged them on, breathlessly begging for more, yes, harder, in a voice she didn't recognize as her own.
And they both gave her precisely what she wanted: long, deep thrusts that rocked her to the core of her being, moving in perfect synchronicity now, as if they'd never done anything else. And it felt good, so good, but it still wasn't quite enough, so she reached down between her legs to touch herself, whining in frustration, when her climax still eluded her. It was almost as if her body didn't dare to go there, because it would be too much to bear, too strong, too intense.
"Damn it, Hermione!" Draco's eyes were fixed on her hand, and they were wide and feverish. "Let me…" And he put his hand over hers, carefully increasing the pressure.
That did it. The world went blindingly white for a moment, and then black, and she actually must have passed out for a moment, because when she came to her senses, Harry was already pulling back, trembling all over, his hair damp with sweat.
"Hermione?" Draco was clearly at the end of his tether. "I'm sorry, but I-"
"Shhh." Wrapping her legs around his waist, she pulled him in deep, as deep as she could, and yes, that was what he needed. Two more sharp, quick thrusts, and he was there, pouring himself inside her, his face a picture of total abandonment.
"Damn." Next to them, Harry was lying on his back, watching them with a dreamy smile. "That was incredible."
Draco made a small, affirmative noise, as he sank down heavily on top of her, too far gone to care. When Hermione gasped for air, he somehow managed to push himself up again on both arms, only to collapse on her other side. He was panting so hard she could see his chest rise and fall with each breath, and he, too, was covered in a fine sheet of sweat.
"We need a shower. Urgently." Hermione felt stupid the moment the words left her mouth, but it was too late.
Already, both of them had started to chuckle softly, though neither of them bothered to raise their heads.
"Later." Harry snorted softly. "Anything you want, love, but I can't possibly move right now."
"Me neither." Draco actually managed to open one eye far enough to wink at her. "Merlin, Hermione, you are impossible. And I love you."
She briefly considered punching his arm, but suddenly, even lifting her arm seemed too much of a chore, with her body all heavy and sated. "I love you, too. Both of you," she managed instead.
"So…" Harry yawned hugely. "How do you like married life so far?"
"Married life?" Already, her eyes were falling shut, and she was too exhausted to even snicker at his words. The bath would definitely have to wait until tomorrow. "It's perfect. Just perfect."
Hugs and thanks to my wonderful beta suilven. And a huge thank you to everyone who faved, followed or commented on this story. You guys are the best!