All's Well That Ends Well

Arthur Weasley rummaged through the shed in which he kept all of his Muggle things, some of which happened to be illegally charmed, shifting whosits and whazits around to find exactly what Hermione had inquired after. "Is this it?" he questioned, holding up a geometric tube filled with blue water.

"That's a lava lamp, Mister Weasley," Hermione replied mildly, hiding the amusement in her voice and expression. "I'm looking for a television and video cassette recorder. They're both much larger than that."

"Tellie-whazit," Arthur mumbled to himself, setting the 'lava lamp' down (while wondering why it wasn't scorchingly hot as the name suggested) and shifting boxes around in the shed to move further into the back. "What's it look like?" he called, kicking away a bewitched mousetrap which attempted readily to bite at his feet.

Standing on her toes and holding her wand – which was casting forth light like a beacon – Hermione attempted to see further back in the shed, which was bewitched to have much more inner space than outward appearances foretold, in order to help Mister Weasley locate the two items she needed. "The television's shaped like a box with a glass front. The video cassette recorder is smaller and rectangular, without any glass. Both have knobs and buttons and cords with plugs."

"Plugs!" Arthur shouted with glee. "You know I just found a charm that makes it possible to use all these ecleptic Muggle devices without plugs and batteries? Isn't that wonderful?"

"Yes, Mister Weasley, it is. We can watch this video, then, since there aren't any plugs at the Burrow or batteries enough for the television," Hermione commented, then placed a hand over her mouth to keep herself from giggling at the older Wizard as he rummaged through the boxes and talked at great length about how fascinating it was that Muggles got along without magic.

Finally, after what seemed like at least hours and twenty different objects ("No, Mister Weasley, that's a fish tank") later, Arthur let out a triumphant sound and held up a dusty, yet usable, video cassette recorder. "This is it, I'm sure of it. It says V.C.R. on the front – video cay-set record, you said? Here it is. And here's that telewhazit, too."

"Thank you, Mister Weasley," Hermione replied, shifting between mountains of boxes to take the rectangular object from him, so he could pick up the small, but sufficient, television, and turned to carefully exit the dusty shed, ridden with gnomes and bewitched mouse traps.

Several hours later, once the Muggle equipment was properly connected to one another and charmed to run without electricity, Hermione called up the stairs to where everyone was gathered in Fred and George's room (in which they were demonstrating the newest line of novelty item), announcing the show was about to begin. Many pairs of feet thundered down the rickety staircase of the Burrow, until the majority of the Gryffindor Graduating Class of 1998 – minus one Neville Longbottom and including Ginny Weasley and Colin Creevey – arrived in the spacious living room of the Weasley home.

"I didn't know the Muggles made a production out of the play," Parvati commented, settling onto the sofa before which the television was positioned. There was little use in hiding the fact that they had obtained the idea of playing Match Maker from a Shakespearean play Parvati had seen, as Hermione had come back from Winter Holiday boasting an insanely thick volume of text (The Complete Works of Shakespeare) and commenting on how she could have been so stupid as to miss such an obvious ploy. Not to say that it didn't work, that is.

"Muggles love Shakespeare," Hermione commented, removing the video cassette from its cardboard case and placing it gingerly into the slot at the front of the elderly VCR – which appeared to be nearly as old as she was.

Ginny, having retreated momentarily into the kitchen, came back with three large bowls brimming with popcorn balanced precariously in her harms, looking much relieved when Seamus snatched one readily from her. "I haven't read much of Shakespeare, though mum adores him."

"I've read a few of his sonnets," Ron commented, grabbing a bowl from his sister and plopping onto the carpeted floor to begin munching on the buttered and salted popcorn. This, of course, brought a round of snickers and giggles down upon him.

"The beauty of the sun pales in comparison to that of you. With skin so fair and lips so – "

"Ginny!" he snapped, almost choking on the handful of popcorn that had been recently stuffed into his mouth.

Immediately, the younger of the two siblings silenced herself, but more-so at the fact that the television had come to life and was currently showing brief clips of other movies. "Weird! It's like the theater, but stuffed into a box! Hermione, how'd they get all those people in there? They didn't use a shrinking charm, did they?"

Hermione, having already explained this to Mister Weasley, closed her eyes as if to shut out the absolutely insane question – as well as her own urge to burst into a fit of laughter. "I'll explain it later, Ginny," she managed to say, without snickering (as Seamus, Dean, and Harry were trying not to), as the Feature Presentation notification flashed across the screen.

Two hours and some odd minutes later – after Benedick commented Don Pedro needed a wife, then commanded dancing prior to his (and Count Claudio's) wedding, which led into a beautiful scene and eventually into the ending credits – the entire living room was in silence.

"I think – what's his name? Keanu Reeves – is much better looking than Draco Malfoy," Lavender commented, finally, after processing the entire movie.

"I don't get what they were talking about!" Seamus looked completely confused, having somehow managed to go through the entire movie without asking a single question about the dialogue.

Parvati, who looked thoughtful, eventually commented, "There was a lot of major differences in their plot and ours. I mean, Claudio didn't go out and try to sneakily get Hero to admit anything – he just came out with it on their wedding day."

"I don't think Harry could have waited until his wedding day."

"And Beatrice wasn't reading 101 Magical Ways to Ensure Love," Ginny added after Dean's comment, grinning towards Hermione.

Hermione felt her face go quite red.. "You know, I explained about that book. It wasn't anything like the title sounds – "

"So, you actually read it?"

"Since when doesn't Hermione read every book she comes across?" Lavender grinned.

" – and it has nothing to do with love potions or love charms or anything magical to induce love. It's just magical ways to make love grow stronger – romantic ideas, romantic food recipes," she continued, unfazed by the comments being flung her way, as she had suffered through their jibes about the book in question since November.

"But, you didn't return it to the library, did you, Hermione? That's going to be the blemish on your record that prevents you from becoming the next Minister of Magic, you know," Parvati commented, again, about the book not being returned to the Hogwarts library.

Standing to press the 'rewind' button on the VCR, Hermione attempted to push away thoughts of scratching Parvati's eyes out – she was quite annoying, after all. "I told you this, too. I took it back to Madam Pince and she said she didn't that sort of rubbish in her library – as she was doing away with the leisure reading section – and told me I could keep it, since I was so interested in it that I kept it past the return date."

Ginny blinked, as she had heard the story many times before, but only then realized that the book had to be somewhere and she had not noticed Hermione packing it away their last day at Hogwarts. "Wait. So, where is it?"

Ron, after watching the conversation progress in silence, heaved a sigh at the question. "I have it," he admitted, his ears burning a light shade of pink at the giggle received from Lavender. "It's, apparently, fuel for my spontaneous, Shackspeerian sonnet writing." This, of course, was grumbled. He hadn't asked for the book, but he had received it for Christmas from Hermione as a subtle suggestion that he should concentrate less on Quidditch (especially in the off-season) and more on candlelight, roses, and romance. Harry had nearly fallen off his seat with laughter when he snatched the gift's card away and read it.

Before another comment could be uttered, a call from out in the garden, where several tables had been set up for dinner, came to announce that the aforementioned meal was almost ready. Thus, the group rose and stretched from sitting in a solitary position for overly two hours, then began the small walk out into the overgrown, gnome-ridden garden of the Burrow.

Once in the garden, under the dying light of the early July evening, the various Gryffidors – or, rather, mostly Gryffindor alumni – settled into seats around the connected tables. Before delving into the meal, however, there came a rather serious inquiry came from Harry.

"Was it just me, or did that guy look a lot like Professor Lockhart?"