The Postcard.

A little over two weeks after leaving Hogwarts for the final time, Hermione Granger, was still adjusting to life after school. In the space of a few weeks her entire life had changed. She'd said goodbye to her home with her parents in the muggle world, and started her new life in the wizarding world. Although Hermione wasn't alone in her new life, she was living with her boyfriend, Draco Malfoy.

Hermione and Draco had first started getting friendly in their sixth year when they'd worked on a couple of homework projects together, and then when they'd both been made head students in their final year, romance had blossomed. By the time they'd graduated they'd been serious about their relationship, and it had seemed like the natural thing to find somewhere to live together once they'd left school.

Not that it had really taken much finding as the couple were currently residing in a luxury penthouse owned by Draco's family. Under normal circumstances, Hermione could never have afforded such a place, especially as she was still mulling over her career options, but as Draco had pointed it, it was stupid to find somewhere smaller and pay rent when they could live in the penthouse free of charge. Although to be honest, Hermione suspected Draco was only using that logic so that he could remain living the life of luxury, as her boyfriend was rather spoiled and she doubted he would want to live outside of his comfort zone.

Although Hermione herself was more than happy with the living arrangements, and she was loving life outside of Hogwarts. Now all she needed to do was decide what she wanted to do with her career and everything would be sorted. Draco had already started working at the family business alongside his father, Lucius, but Hermione couldn't quite decide what she wanted to do with her life. She had job offers and information from several different companies and lines of work, and now she had to work on narrowing them down and picking a career that she would enjoy and that would be fulfilling.

Eager to make some choices about her future, Hermione had risen early one Saturday morning and was enjoying a peacefully breakfast on the balcony of the penthouse while perusing her job literature. She'd left Draco sound asleep in bed, and it was almost an hour before her boyfriend emerged onto the balcony, still looking half asleep.

"What on earth are you doing up at this time of the morning?" Draco blearily asked as he sat down beside his girlfriend and poured himself a cup of coffee from the pot Hermione was keeping hot with magic.

"It's already eight," Hermione retorted.

"That's early for a weekend," Draco pouted. "I was hoping for a lie-in."

"You could have stayed in bed," Hermione replied with a shrug.

"But where's the fun in that?" Draco questioned. "The whole idea of a lie-in is that you're in bed with me."

"Tomorrow," Hermione promised, giving her boyfriend a quick kiss.

"Tomorrow it is then," Draco agreed. "But you can still pay me some attention today. We've got the whole weekend together. You can make some decisions about your future later."

"It's alright for you, you've got a job," Hermione retorted. "Not all of us have rich Daddy's with multi-million businesses that they need help running."

"If it's a job you want, just say the word," Draco said with a chuckle. "Father would love to have you on board. In fact, he'd probably prefer you to me."

Hermione laughed, but she wasn't sure just how serious her boyfriend was being. Hermione had been initially hesitant about meeting Draco's parents as they were staunch purebloods, but the older couple had welcomed her into their family with open arms. In fact she got on famously with the pair of them and she especially loved the debates she could get into with Lucius, who like Draco, wasn't afraid to argue with her and stick to his own guns when he thought she was wrong about something.

"I'm being serious," Draco told his girlfriend. "If it's something you want to consider, we can find a position for you easily enough."

"I don't want to be known as the boss's girlfriend though," Hermione pointed out.

"The company is so big we can find you a role where you never need set eyes on me," Draco replied. "Just think about it."

"I will," Hermione promised as she gathered up the papers she'd been looking at and stacked them on an empty chair. "So what do you want to do for the weekend?"

"I'm sure we'll think of something," Draco said, giving his girlfriend a sinful smirk.

"I'm sure we will," Hermione agreed with a laugh.

However, before they could make any decisions on what the weekend would hold for them, they were interrupted by a large, unfamiliar barn owl swopping down onto the balcony. The owl sat patiently on the back of one of the empty chairs while Draco untied the postcard around its ankle, before it snapped up a piece of toast and went soaring into the bright morning sky.

"Is that the Eiffel Tower?" Hermione asked, tilting her head to get a good look at the postcard in her boyfriend's hands.

"It is," Draco replied with a frown. "Who do we know in France?"

"I can't remember anyone saying they were going away," Hermione replied. "Why don't you look and see who it's from."

"Daphne," Draco said as he turned the postcard over and instantly recognised the neat handwriting of his friend, Daphne Greengrass.

"I didn't know she was going to France," Hermione said, wondering why Daphne had never mentioned going on holiday.

"Holy crap," Draco muttered, his grey eyes widening in shock when he read what Daphne had to say.

"What is it?"

Instead of replying, Draco wordlessly handed the postcard over to Hermione. Hermione quickly read what Daphne had to say, and when she did her mouth fell open in surprise and she had to read certain sentences more than once to believe what she was reading.

"Bloody hell," she whispered when she was finally able to talk.

"Indeed," Draco agreed with a nod of his head. "What do we do?"

"What can we do?" Hermione questioned with a shrug. "It's her life and her choice."

"Yeah, but she's left us with the job of dealing with Blaise and Potter," Draco argued.

Draco and Hermione's relationship had resulted in the Gryffindors and the Slytherins learning to get along in their last year of school, and it had been revealed that Hermione's best friend, Harry Potter, was harbouring a crush on Daphne. The only problem was, the second Harry started showing an interest in Daphne, Draco's best friend, Blaise Zabini, professed his own love for the elegant blonde witch. The end result was almost an entire year of the two boys competing for Daphne's affections. However, by the end of the year, neither wizard had won her over, but they'd both been determined to continue the wooing once they'd left Hogwarts.

"It's not ideal, but they need to be told," Hermione said with a shrug. "Let's send them a message and hope they can deal with rejection like men."

"It'll be a first for Blaise, he's not used to being rejected," Draco chuckled. "In fact I think Daphne is the first witch not to succumb to his charms within a matter of moments."

"And now we know why," Hermione snorted. "I thought she was genuinely torn between Blaise and Harry. Did you know there was someone else in the picture?"

"I had no idea," Draco replied with a shake of his head. "Although I still can't believe it. How long do you think it's being going on?"

"I shudder to think," Hermione said with a shrug. "Come on, let's go and get this over with."

"This is just how I wanted to spend my Saturday morning, breaking a couple of hearts," Draco muttered as he followed his girlfriend back into the penthouse.

Quickly the pair sent off messages to their two best friends, asking to see them as soon as possible. Not knowing how long they would have to wait for a reply, the couple settled down in the living room, but barely ten minutes had passed before the floo network lit up and Blaise stepped from the flames. Almost directly on his heels was Harry, who seemed as bewildered by the summons as Blaise had been moments earlier.

"This is so much easier now you're together," Hermione said to the boys. "Sit down, we got something to tell you."

"You're pregnant," Harry guessed.

"No, I'm not," Hermione said, shaking her head. "But even if I were, why would we just summon the pair of you?"

"To ask us to be godfathers," Blaise said. "Because obviously, you'll have to give us both the job."

"What about Ron?" Hermione asked. "He's also my best friend."

"And Theo," Draco added.

"Fine, so when you have kids, you'll have four godfathers," Blaise said with a dismissive shrug.

"That will not be anytime soon," Draco insisted. "But that isn't even why we asked to see you. It's about Daphne."

"She's finally made her choice," Blaise deduced with glee. "Sorry Potter, but I'm the clear winner here."

"As if," Harry snorted. "If she wanted to be with you, she could have been dating you for years. Besides, you only want her because I do."

"I set my sights on Daphne long before you noticed her," Blaise retorted.

"Enough," Draco called, raising his hands to stop the squabbling. "Neither of you have won. Daphne's eloped."

"Eloped?" Harry repeated in a shocked voice. "As in, married?"

"Yes, we received a postcard from her this morning," Hermione confirmed. "She got married yesterday."

"Who to?" Blaise demanded. "Don't tell me Theo crept in and swept her off her feet?"

"No, it's worse than Theo," Draco replied.

"Worse than Theo. Hell no, don't tell me she ran off with Weasley," Blaise groaned.

"No, not Ron," Hermione said.

"Then who?" Harry demanded. "Who did she marry?"

"Severus," Draco answered in a quiet voice.

"Severus?" Blaise questioned with a frown. "Who the hell is Severus?"

"Professor Snape," Hermione clarified.

"Snape," Blaise exploded, jumping to his feet. "She married Snape. Tell me this is not happening. I could understand losing out to Potter, I could even cope with losing out to Theo, and at a push I guess I could deal with losing out to Weasley. But Snape? How the hell can anyone prefer Snape to me? Look at me, I'm a sex god in comparison. Can Snape even manage to get it up at his age?"

"He's not that old," Draco retorted. Severus was several years younger than his parents, and as disturbing as it was, he knew they still had a healthy sex life.

"Harry, are you okay?" Hermione asked, aware that Harry was staring blankly into space and look shell-shocked.

"I think I'm going to be sick," he muttered.

"I don't blame you mate," Blaise said. "I feel rather queasy myself. I don't think I'm ever going to live this humiliation down. Fancy being passed over for Severus bloody Snape."

"It's really not something you want to dwell on," Harry agreed with a shudder. "Did she say why him?"

"No, she just said they'd gotten married and asked if we could break the news to the pair of you," Hermione replied. "I've got the postcard if you want to see it for yourselves."

"No," Blaise answered quickly. "What I want is to just forget this ever happened. I want it wiped from everyone's memory that I was once interested in Daphne. I don't think my ego can take being overlooked in favour of a dour old Potions Master."

"It doesn't exactly give you confidence," Harry agreed. "But I do want to know one thing. How long has she been involved with Snape? Was it going on during school?"

"If they're married, it had to have been. We've only been left school for two weeks, and no-one gets together and gets married in that short space of time," Blaise remarked. "Damn, if he hadn't stolen Daphne from me, I might have even been proud of old Snape. I bet not every Professor can say they've bagged a hot student."

"I should hope not," Hermione said with a scowl. "If this was going on before we left school, Professor Snape could be in serious trouble."

"I bet you any money, he quits his job," Draco said. "In fact, he might have already done it."

"I would say let me know what happens, but I don't think I want to hear much more of this sordid tale," Blaise remarked. "What I need now is to get steaming drunk and forget Daphne Greengrass ever existed. What do you say, Potter, care to join me?"

"I would," Harry said, nodding his acceptance. "Let's go and drown our sorrows, Zabini. And for the record, I would much rather it was you that I lost out to. I can't believe anyone would choose Snape over us."

"Daphne's the one missing out," Blaise said, clapping Harry on the shoulder. "Come on, let's go and find some girls who know a good thing when they see it. There has to be some normal witches out there, who would rather be with two young, sexy wizards such as ourselves, rather than stuffy, sexless goats like Snape. Hey, do you want to come as well, Draco?"

"No thanks, I don't need to trawl for witches, I've already got the perfect girl," Draco replied.

"Yeah, at least you know you're not going to lose Hermione to an old man," Harry said. "Damn, maybe I should have gotten in there before you, Malfoy. Hermione's pretty hot."

"Thanks Harry, but you're not my type," Hermione said with a laugh. "And don't worry, I'm sure the pair of you will bounce right back and find someone new."

"Yeah, someone who won't leave us for a crusty old Professor," Blaise snorted.

With Blaise and Harry still bemoaning their loss, the pair said their goodbyes and headed off to come to terms with the fact the witch they both fancied had ran off and married their former Potions Professor. It was certainly an unusual start to life after Hogwarts, and a one that no-one had seen coming. After all, who could possibly have foreseen that the beautiful and elegant Daphne Greengrass would fall in love with the brooding, grouchy Potions Professor, Severus Snape, and the pair would elope to France within weeks of school ending?