A/N: All hail COVID-19, giver of massive amounts of free time and taker of televised sports and other entertainment options to fill up said free time...resulting in the free time being filled up by writing random HP One Shots.

We see things they'll never see...

July 4, 1995

It had only been three days since Harry had returned to Privet Drive but the boring routine that he imagined he'd be following for the foreseeable future had already been established; Wake up early to pay for the Daily Prophet, scan for any news of Voldemort, wait for his Aunt Petunia to bang on his door and inform him of his chores for the day, complete said chores as efficiently and quietly as possible, hide in his room or wander around Little Whinging for the remainder of the day, rinse and repeat.

The letter he'd received from Ron the prior day had been a welcome but ultimately frustrating break from the monotony, as he was extremely vague about where he was and what he was doing. All he knew was he wasn't at the Burrow and that he was with other people doing things. As he sat in his rickety bedroom chair and idly played with the practice snitch he'd received last Christmas, he wished he could be with other people doing things.

His early afternoon routine of hiding from his relatives was broken by the rather loud and forceful tone of his Aunt Petunia coming from downstairs…which was odd. His Aunt did her best to be as quiet and normal whenever possible. The only time she raised her voice was when something or someone magical-

Oh shit.

He quickly bounded out of the room and peered down the steps to see what was going on. His 'family' had been relatively pleasant so far and he didn't want his peaceful brooding to be ruined unless it was for something good like getting rescued from his prison or one of his-

"Hermione?" he asked dumbly as he saw his best friend calmly waiting for his Aunt to stop complaining about her presence.

"Harry!" she exclaimed happily as she spotted him at the top of the stairs.

"What's going on? What's happened?" he asked, instinctively fearing the worst.

"Nothing," she answered casually, "just wanted to pay a visit. I hope that's okay." He could tell she was quelling her typical enthusiasm and doing her best to act as normal as possible.

"It most certainly is not-"

"Brilliant!" he blurted enthusiastically, cutting off his Aunt before she could build up a head of steam. Hermione's answering smile was instantly his favorite moment of the summer.

He quickly returned to his room and grabbed his shoes, throwing them on as best as he could while stumbling his way downstairs, not wanting to subject Hermione to his Aunt for any longer than necessary.

"I was wondering if I could use your telephone?" she asked once he'd reached her and she'd given him a muted version of her typical hug. "I promised my parents I'd let them know when I'd arrived safely."

"Absolutely not!" his Aunt replied. "I won't have you people messing about with our-"

"Her parents are mugg- not magical, Aunt Petunia. They're dentists," he informed casually. "Hermione just wants to call her parents like normal people do. The sooner you let her do it the sooner we will leave."

He knew he'd said the magic words as his Aunt pinched her face in discomfort and quickly nodded before stepping aside.

"It's just through there on the wall," he supplied as he pointed toward the kitchen.

"I'll be right back," Hermione answered as normally as possible before walking normally into the other room to make her normal phone call to her normal parents.

Harry silently cheered. There was no need to provoke his Aunt if it wasn't absolutely necessary and if Hermione could pay a visit without blowing up the house or giving Dudley an extra appendage she might be allowed to come back without his Uncle pulling out the shotgun.

"She can't stay here," his Aunt spit out, "Vernon would be furious if he knew. And you'll be paying us back for any charges for her call…"

He fought back the urge to grin. "Thanks Aunt Petunia," he muttered as Hermione walked back normally from the kitchen.

"See you later," he called, pulling Hermione calmly and quietly out the door. He wondered if his Aunt had been disappointed that she hadn't been able to get properly bothered by him or his friend.

They'd made it two houses down before he burst out laughing while Hermione looked furious.

"She's awful," Hermione exclaimed, fighting back at the grin that was stubbornly trying to peek through her rage.

"You've no idea," Harry offered before calming. "Is everything really okay?"

"Yes. No. I'm not sure," she mumbled, looking thoroughly irritated.

"Well that settles it," he joked, instantly regretting it as he realized that Hermione was genuinely troubled.

"What is it?" he prodded.

"Have you eaten?" she asked. "Is there anywhere nearby to eat? There are a few options near the tube station but that's a twenty minute walk…"

"There is a shopping area a few blocks away from here," he offered, gesturing to his left. "But I don't have any muggle money-"

"Great!" she exclaimed as she grabbed his hand once again and pulled him toward where he had pointed. "And don't worry about paying…it's my treat."

After their food had arrived Harry broached the topic once again.

"What's going on, Hermione? Is everything really all right?"

"Everything is fine, Harry," she answered with a sigh. "Really…it's just…the headmaster stopped by my house the other day-"

He immediately tensed.

"Everything. Is. Fine," she repeated as she reached over and gave his arm a reassuring squeeze.

"He invited me to join the Weasleys for the summer…they're apparently staying with Sirius somewhere."

"Are you going on holiday with your parents?" he asked. He quickly squashed down the urge to feel sorry for himself at not receiving such an offer.

"No, they are planning a trip to Italy in a few weeks but I'm staying in England," she answered.

"Then I don't understand-"

"He asked me not to tell you anything about what we'd be doing there or where we were. That it wouldn't be safe and there was a risk that our letters could be intercepted."

Ron's letter made sense now. Apparently he was following Dumbledore's instructions. His annoyance at his friend and the headmaster was interrupted by the realization that his other friend was still talking.

"I asked him when you would be joining us and he said he didn't know. Then I asked him why we couldn't send you letters through muggle post or have a house elf deliver them and he said it was a bad idea and I needed to trust him."

She stopped to take a bite of her food before continuing. "I decided I'd stay with my parents instead and visit you every week."

Harry fought the urge to climb over the table and wrap his friend in a hug once again. "Do they know you're here?"

"It's none of their business is it?" she answered. "I'm allowed to ride the tube and visit my friend while he's stuck living with his awful relatives. And you're allowed to spend the day with your amazing and considerate friend."

"I'll go to this super secret hideout when you get to go," she continued, the fierceness evident in her voice. "Until then I plan on visiting you every Tuesday if that's all right. I would do it more often but it takes over an hour to get here and mum and dad are worried about me making such a long trip…"

It was more than all right. It was everything.

July 11, 1995

Harry had struck a deal with his Aunt. If he met Hermione somewhere else beside Privet Drive and they stayed away from the house he would be excused from chores every Tuesday. He'd sent Hedwig off with a message to meet him at the pizza place in the same area they'd visited last week. As happy as he was to see his friend again it was obvious something was bothering her.

"It's nothing, Harry," she quickly mumbled before asking what toppings he preferred.

"Pepperoni and mushroom," he quickly replied, "now tell me what's wrong."

"Professor Lupin paid me a visit last Wednesday…"

Harry immediately knew where this was heading. "Go on," he prodded as calmly as he could manage.

"The headmaster sent him," she began uncomfortably. "They knew I had visited you and asked me not to do it again. They said it wasn't safe….that if someone knew where I lived they could follow me and track me to your location."

"What did you do?" he asked.

"I ignored his advice, obviously," she muttered, attempting to glare at him but failing as a smirk stubbornly broke through. She tried to hide it by looking down at her menu…but he saw it.

Harry laughed and was struck with an idea. He pulled out the invisibility cloak he'd brought along and placed it on her lap under the table.

"Harry, what is- I can't take that," she gasped.

"Dumbledore said Privet Drive is the safest place for me so I reckon I don't need it while I'm here. You'll be able to leave your house without anyone knowing…you can even use it to sneak on the tube if you want to."

"I don't know," she said worriedly.

"Spending the day with you last Tuesday was the best time I've had in…forever," Harry admitted honestly. "And knowing I'd get to do it again today made the entire week tolerable."

"Really?" Hermione asked. It was clear that his admission had taken her off guard.

"Really," he replied unthinkingly.

"Thank you…and me too," she mumbled as she bowed her head and stowed the cloak away in her bag.

They placed their order (pepperoni and mushrooms) and ate in relative silence before Hermione became serious once again. She looked very determined and Harry braced himself.

"What shoe size do you wear?" she asked inexplicably.

"Seven…I think. Why?"

"Once we finish lunch we're going to get you some new trainers," she informed.

"What? No. You're already paying for lunch. And the ones I have are fine. You don't need-"

"The ones you are wearing are barely holding together. This will go a lot more smoothly if you stop being so stubborn-"

"You're the one being stubborn," he protested, cringing at how stupid he sounded.

She rolled her eyes at his feeble response. He knew that he should be annoyed but he couldn't quite manage it.

"It wasn't even my idea," she replied casually, grabbing another slice. "I mentioned to Mum what bad shape your old ones were in and she insisted. So if you want to blame anyone you should blame her. Besides, you've given me a priceless magical artifact…the least I can do is buy you a pair of trainers as thanks…but only because Mum said to…"

She looked so pleased with herself as she bit into her food. Once again the thought occurred to him that her smugness should be bothering him but it actually was making him…happier? He did his best to hide that fact but based on Hermione's look of triumph he knew he was doing a poor job of it.

"Fine," he grumbled falsely, "but I can pay for it. I don't have much muggle money but I've got some galleons in my room. I'll pay you back next week."

"Sounds good," she replied, barely suppressing a laugh. He idly thought about how pretty her smile was. He knew it was thoroughly shallow of him to think it but she truly did look better with her smaller teeth.

They returned to eating in companionable silence as Hermione quietly basked in her victory. He found himself nodding along to a particularly catchy song.

"Oh please," Hermione mumbled in annoyance, "not you to."

"Not me what?"

"Don't tell me you like Oasis," she pleaded.

"What's an Oasis?" he asked, now thoroughly confused.

"The song you were bopping along to?"

"I wasn't bopping," he protested. "Besides, it's catchy. Is it called Oasis?"

Hermione's eye's boggled.

"You've never heard of the band Oasis?" she asked in indignation. "It's all they played on the radio last summer. I thought they would have died down a bit by now but they seem to be more popular than ever. Their music is fine I suppose but I've heard it so much at this point…and they're always in the news for being idiots. You've honestly never heard this song?" she repeated disbelievingly.

He was suddenly uncomfortable. "I don't really get a chance to listen to music," he mumbled, staring at his food. "I actually have a portable radio…it belonged to Dudley before he broke it and I managed to get it working again a few years ago. But my Uncle would get mad if he ever heard me playing it and then the batteries ran out anyway…"

He chanced a glance at Hermione and realized that she was now furious. Whether she was furious at the Dursleys or herself for forgetting how sheltered he'd been he wasn't sure. Probably a mixture of both. Either way it wasn't her fault.

"It's not a big deal," he mumbled awkwardly. "It's just a song."

"That's not the point. It's not fair that-" She stopped suddenly and forced herself to calm down.

"I think it's called Live Forever."

July 18, 1995

Harry insisted that they meet near the tube station next week to save Hermione a bit of time walking. She said that it wasn't a problem…that the long trip was worth it to spend time with him…and he believed her. But she smiled softly when she agreed to his compromise and he knew he had done the right thing.

They'd chosen an Indian restaurant this week. He'd never had curry and Hermione couldn't stop raving about it so it was an easy choice. He had no clue what to get so he simply said "I'll have the same" after Hermione ordered. The smile it garnered made it worth it even if it turned out to be wretched.

"Here is the money I owe you," he informed as they waited for their food, feeling very proud of himself for not letting her get away with paying for his trainers. He'd made a point of looking up the current exchange rate in the financial section of that morning's Daily Prophet to make sure he paid back the full amount due.

His satisfaction at a job well done was short lived however as he noticed that Hermione looked exceedingly pleased with herself. She pulled a shopping bag out of the larger than normal handbag she had brought with her and slid it across the table.

"What did you do?" he asked, realizing she'd one upped him once again.

"I didn't do anything," she proclaimed innocently. "It was Dad…"

Harry rolled his eyes as he examined the contents of the bag. It was a portable music player and headphones similar to the ones he'd seen Dudley use along with a few cd's and a lot of batteries. Before he could protest Hermione continued on.

"I told Dad you never had the chance to listen to much popular music and he insisted that we get that for you," she droned on insincerely. She wasn't even trying to properly lie at this point. It was a bit insulting.

"Your dad insisted. Right," he smirked.

"There's a bit of all his favorites in there," she continued on pleasantly. "The Rolling Stones…Pink Floyd…Led Zeppelin…Queen-"

"Oasis," he mumbled with a smile as he stared at the case. He thought they looked cool and disinterested…like proper rock stars.

"I picked that one out," she interjected softly.

"I thought you didn't like them," he laughed.

"I said they were overplayed…I never said I didn't like them," she replied. At his raised eyebrow she came clean.

"Okay, fine. I don't like them. At all. But that doesn't matter as long as you like it."

"Thank you," he replied sincerely…wanting to say more but suddenly unable to do so.

"Any more visitors this week?" he asked, purposely changing the subject as he carefully stowed his gifts away.

"No visitors but I did receive a letter from the headmaster," she grumbled. "He is very disappointed in my decision to ignore his advice and once again invited me to join him at the super secret place."

"What did you say?" he prompted, already knowing the answer but wanting to hear her say it out loud.

"I told him I was still planning on joining everyone once you were there as well," she replied. "I haven't heard back."

As their food arrived she continued on. "Ronald sent two letters as well. He's very annoyed with me at the moment. Apparently he's bored out of his mind doing whatever they are doing wherever they are doing it and insisted that I come and be bored with them."

Harry felt a twinge of irritation as he thought of Hermione and Ron being alone together. He did his best to ignore it.

"He keeps apologizing for not being able to tell me anything," Harry said. "I think he is worried that I'm upset. I haven't had the heart to tell him he sounds more annoyed than me."

Hermione laughed.

He watched as Hermione dug into her food and caught a breath as her eyes rolled into the back of her head. "This is so good," she mumbled in pleasure.

Harry dumbly took a bite as he watched Hermione continue to dig in voraciously. He never knew watching someone eat could be so…intoxicating.

He was broken out of his thoughts by a burning sensation in his mouth that grew exponentially in intensity. He began coughing loudly and quickly gulped down his glass of water in a feeble attempt at holding back the onslaught.

Hermione smiled but kept eating, sliding her water glass toward him once his was empty. "Did I forget to tell you it was spicy?"

July 25, 1995

It was McDonald's this week. They had passed one last week as they were making their way to a nearby park and he'd commented absently that he'd never had it. Hermione insisted that they would remedy that important life omission on her next visit.

She had suggested he try a Big Mac knowing how much he disliked ketchup…another casual comment he had made a long time ago that she never forgot. It was good…the special sauce was different and nothing at all like the tomato sauce he despised.

"Professor McGonagall stopped by yesterday," she began.

Harry whistled in acknowledgement. "They're pulling out the big guns now," he joked, drawing a laugh from Hermione as she dipped her fry in mayonnaise. He knew she liked ketchup on sandwiches but not on chips.

"She told me that you would most likely be going to the super secret place soon and suggested I go there and wait for you to arrive. When I refused she insisted that I stop visiting you. When that didn't work she tried convincing my parents."

He must have looked supremely annoyed because Hermione's expression immediately softened and she placed a calming hand on his arm. "They told her off and sent her on her way, Harry. I've told them a bit about your relatives and what you've had to put up with–

Oh don't give me that look," she admonished at his frown, "you have nothing to be embarrassed about. I swear Mum is ready to adopt you at this point.

Anyway…they told her who I choose to visit during the summer was none of her business and that they'd never seen me so-"

Whatever she was about to say must have been embarrassing because her face reddened and her food suddenly became very fascinating. He had an idea what she was about to admit…at least he hoped so.

"It's been the best summer I can remember," he mumbled as he idly stared at the sesame seeds on his sandwich.

July 31, 1995

They'd revised their schedule and met on Monday in honor of Harry's birthday. To his surprise Hermione wasn't alone at the tube station as her parents had insisted on coming along. They'd gone to a chain restaurant that Hermione's father had picked out solely based on the embarrassing song the wait staff performed for any unfortunate customer dumb enough to show up on their birthday. It was awful and he hated being the center of attention. It was also, by far, the best birthday meal he'd ever had.

It became clear that the Grangers were using his birthday as a way to help out with his abominable wardrobe without embarrassing him. It was nothing fancy…a few jumpers…a few pairs of jeans…even some underwear and socks. No shoes though…they'd already helped out with those. He realized he must have looked particularly pathetic when he started opening the multiple presents as Hermione and her mother seemed to be having a contest to see who could pretend not to cry the best. They were both very bad at it but he appreciated the effort.

He'd had such a good time he had temporarily forgotten about where he had to return to that night. What he needed to do was truly embarrassing but there was nothing for it. He refused to let Hermione and her parents' generosity go to waste. Instead of being dropped off at Privet Drive he directed them to the nearby park. As Hermione's father opened the boot to take out Harry's presents he stopped him.

"Would it be okay if you took my gifts with you tonight and let Hermione give them back to me at Hogwarts?" he asked quietly so only Mr. Granger could hear. "I know it's mental but my relatives get angry about the dumbest things. If they see me wearing all new clothes it will just lead to problems."

The explanation sounded so stupid coming out of his mouth but Mr. Granger didn't act like it was stupid. He just nodded and pulled out one box before closing the boot back up.

"You'll never hear the end of it if you don't start using the planner Hermione bought you as soon as humanly possible," he joked as he handed it over. "Thanks for letting us spend your birthday with you, son."

Harry felt like he should hug the man…he thought he wanted to…but he wasn't sure if he was supposed to. He settled for a nod and mumbled "Thank you, Mr. Granger."

He watched him get back in the car and mutter something to Mrs. Granger…most likely relaying Harry's idiotic request. He imagined Mrs. Granger was glaring like Hermione did when she was angry.

As he stared at the planner he heard a car door opening and Hermione was quickly back by his side. "Dad said they would wait here while I walked you back. It's only a couple of blocks, right?"

Harry nodded and grabbed her hand. He'd wanted to do it for awhile but had been scared she'd laugh at him if he tried…which was stupid because Hermione would never laugh at him. He'd done some truly idiotic things over the years and she never laughed.

Apparently she didn't mind as she seemed to be doing her best to walk as close to him as possible…much closer than normal. Harry found that the slower he walked the easier it was to stay close to Hermione.

As #4 came into view he stopped. "I should probably go alone the rest of the way. Uncle Vernon will be home from work by now and he'll probably get upset if he sees you."

"I've one more thing to give you," Hermione said quietly as she stood on her tiptoes and kissed him. It didn't last long…they were standing in the middle of the street with her parents waiting a block away after all…but it was brilliant. And if he had any say in the matter it was the first of many.

She grabbed him in a hug and buried her face in his chest. He wasn't positive but he thought she was smelling him. Whatever she was doing it was clearly something enjoyable as she seemed to be trying to burrow in as much as possible.

"I guess I'll see you next Tuesday," she finally mumbled, making no effort to move away.

"Next Tuesday," he repeated, tightening his grip just a bit.

They eventually heard a car horn and reluctantly pulled away from each other. Harry guessed that Mr. Granger was laughing and Mrs. Granger was slapping him on the shoulder for being such an idiot.

August 3, 1995

It was two in the morning but Harry was wide awake. He should have known his relatively non-miserable summer had been too good to be true. He'd done everything he'd been instructed to do. He hadn't done anything rash…stayed at home most days and didn't even complain how everyone but Hermione was ignoring him. And look what his efforts had gotten him…attacked by dementors…expelled from school…then not expelled maybe…then condescending and infuriating notes telling him to be a good boy and stay inside…all capped by that cryptic Howler. He was fairly positive it was from Dumbledore. Nobody else would ever be that vague and nonspecific for absolutely no reason.

He absently punched the wall in frustration. In truth he didn't really care to hear from the headmaster any more…he'd had his chance…loads of them…to do the right thing. He just wanted to see Hermione. His Hermione. He wasn't even able to send her a note as Hedwig had been out hunting and his Aunt had refused to let him use the phone.

And then it happened. The rapid and repeated ringing of the doorbell. Harry wasn't quite sure how they were managing it but they simultaneously began knocking loudly on the door as well. He sprinted down the steps…ignoring his Uncle's rantings about his freaky friends not having any common courtesy.

He thrust the door open and was assaulted by a blurry, chestnut haired missile. "You're okay, you're okay, you're okay," she mumbled frantically into his chest.

"It was touch and go for a moment but yeah…I'm okay," he reassured as he inhaled her lavender shampoo, instantly calming. It occurred to him that Hermione may have been onto something with the whole smelling thing.

He heard a throat clearing and noticed a bleary eyed set of parents staring at him.

"We brought chocolate," Mr. Granger informed as he held up the multiple packages of sweets in his hands. "Could you do me a favor and eat some? It was a wrench finding somewhere open this late and I'd like to at least pretend the effort was worth it."

Harry grabbed the piece of chocolate offered over Hermione's shoulder and popped it in his mouth. "Much better," he enthused, drawing an appreciative grin from the man. Between the chocolate, the smell of lavender shampoo, and Hermione, he was now most definitely okay.

"How did you know?" he asked.

"Ron sent a note telling me what happened," she said into his chest.

"Hermione was meant to stay put and wait for further instructions so naturally she woke us up and demanded we drive over here immediately," Mrs. Granger supplied warmly.

Harry noticed that the Grangers attention had been drawn to an area above his shoulder and realized that by some miracle his relatives had remained quiet. He looked back and confirmed that they were indeed standing on the steps and were most definitely silently fuming.

"These are the Grangers," he introduced. "They're dentists."

He felt Hermione chuckle into his chest followed by a muffled "you are such an idiot." She didn't let go.

"Well they are!" he defended before leaning in and speaking so only she could hear. "Thank you for coming."

"Thank you for being okay," she muttered before pulling back. "Now grab your things. You're coming with us." It wasn't a request.

"I'm meant to stay here," he informed half heartedly.

"And Hermione was meant to stay away. You saw how that worked out," Mr. Granger commented.

"What do you want to do?" Hermione's mother asked kindly. He could tell by her tone that she was more than willing to take the risk if he wanted to go with them. He couldn't remember the last time he'd been asked his opinion on something and been properly listened to. Except for Hermione. She always seemed to be the exception.

As much as he wanted to leave he didn't feel comfortable putting these people…this family…at risk. He was all set to gracefully decline the option when he realized how nice it was to suddenly have options. Even if an option wasn't going to be taken it could be leveraged.

He moved beside Mrs. Granger and leaned in, speaking in a whisper. "Could you stay for thirty minutes? I have an idea."

At her curious nod he walked outside to the front porch. Before he could speak he was interrupted by his Uncle.

"It's the middle of the sodding night!" he grumbled. "Do not wake up the neighborhood!"

Harry turned, responding in a loud whisper. "Do you want me out of here or not?"

Once again it appeared that he had said the magic words as his Uncle angrily nodded for him to continue.

He began speaking to the front lawn in a purposely loud voice. "Whoever is spying on me has thirty minutes to take me to the super secret place or I'm leaving with the Grangers."

Within seconds he heard a loud crack. He had no clue what it signified but it was definitely magical. The next thirty minutes were going to be very interesting. He guessed Sirius would find it very amusing and be congratulating him very shortly.

He walked back inside and grabbed the hand of his now smiling girlfriend. It was clear that she was pleased with his cleverness as well.

"If they don't show up your coming with us," she informed as they took a seat on the couch. As the Grangers moved to sit Harry could tell his Uncle was about to explode.

"Thirty more minutes and all your problems go away, Uncle Vernon. Besides, they're dentists."

While Mrs. Granger appeared to be trying to vaporize his relatives with her eyes Mr. Granger looked highly amused. He shot them a wink before addressing his uncle.


A/N #1: Hermione is 100% wrong. Oasis is brilliant.

A/N #2: If you are a fan of the Harmony pairing I strongly encourage you to join the Discord at discord dot gg/2GcXw8R. It's chock full of great people and is a great resource for finding the best Harry/Hermione fics out there as well as a bunch of smaller stories written by the community, including yours truly.