A Post-Hogwarts Affair

Summary: Ron and Hermione have been married for four years. Their relationship has been a tangled web of mistrust and arguments, and divorce was probably inevitable. But now—everything has come to a restrained halt—when Ron finds out Hermione's been having an affair…especially who she's been having an affair with.

Disclaimer: I do not own the characters present in the Rowling books.

A quick note: This just popped into my head. I don't know if I will continue it, but you might want to review if you like it, that could help change my mind.

Rating: PG-13 for now—language mostly

Hermione Granger-Weasley lay in the small full-size bed, big enough for a person and a half, wishing she were anywhere but here. She looked up at the ceiling, enchanted to match their dreams. Right now he was the only one asleep, thus only his dreams could be seen. Swirls of silver against a black sky, fleeting images of a broomstick, the crowd, cheers…all he ever cared about anyway. She blinked, trying to hold back her tears. She wanted out so badly. It had been two years and she'd wanted out. Oh, she tried. She tried hard, sacrificing almost everything to support his career.

But he put Quidditch first, always. Priority 1: Quidditch. Priority 2: Harry and Ginny. Ron was very supportive of the budding romance between the two. Actually Ron was supportive of anything Harry did, almost. In her most bitter moments, Hermione wondered if Ron was well, more attracted to Harry than he was to her. It certainly seemed like that. Hermione brushed the thought away. If anything, Ron was straight. Hermione knew perfectly well what he did after Quidditch games, which brought her to priority number 3 of his. Drinking. Ron loved the stuff. She should have seen it coming; his unhealthy obsession with butterbeer would only lead to bigger and better and more dangerous things. And when Ron drank, he was extraordinarily drunk, which often led to midnight phone calls asking Mrs. Granger-Weasley to please come retrieve her husband who was currently streaking on the Quidditch field. Priority 4 was his family. Ron adored all of them, and he was always sending what little money they made to his parents. Not that Hermione minded. If anyone deserved money it was the Weasleys. But honestly—he gave them so much that…well, Hermione knew that their financial status was plummeting. Ron earned quite a bit with his Quidditch career, but half went to his parents, and of the half remaining, one half of that went to alcohol. Hermione made a decent amount of money working in the Ministry as well, but recently the pay had been rather low, with much money going to fund the support groups that had been established all over the place after Voldemort had executed his wrath. Finally, at priority number 5, Hermione decided she fit in. She'd never wanted a man that doted on her night and day, but well, eating together would be nice. Hermione was a great fan of romance, she wanted to be wined and dined and well…treated nicely.

And that brought her to the affair. She had never thought that she of all people would have an affair; it was simply so wrong. She blinked again, letting her tears trickle down her face gently. She had thought she loved him, but even then…even at the beginning, she'd had her doubts. Their wedding…well, it had almost been perfect. If only Ron hadn't…she struggled not to let the memory in, but her emotions flooded her barriers anyway.

"Hermione, hurry up! The wedding's in an hour!" Ginny Weasley shrieked. Hermione smiled, looking at herself in the mirror. She had to admit, she looked really nice. The white chiffon dress was extremely modern, courtesy of her long-time friend Parvati Patil, now a brilliant fashion designer. Her hair had been done up except for a few golden brown tendrils lightly framing her face, bringing out the chocolate in her eyes. And Hermione adored the shoes. They gave her an edge; literally and figuratively. The four-inch heels certainly added to her petite, 5 foot 3 inch frame, and Hermione found stilettos really sexy. Ron would love them, for sure.

"I'm coming," she called to Ginny, surveying her image one last time. Lovely, really. She turned around and went down the spiraling staircase of the burrow. Outside, Harry was waiting. He smiled when he saw her.

"You look great," he said sincerely, as they pulled into a warm embrace. "Ron will love it." At the mention of his name, she stiffened. She wasn't sure if it was right to get married so soon. They had only graduated two years ago, and in Hermione's mind, were a little too young to get married. Unless, of course, it was true love, something Hermione was an avid believer in. But she wasn't sure if what she felt for Ron was real, true love, or if it was just…and she hated to say it, an infatuation. More of a platonic love. When they kissed, she felt something, but it wasn't…oh, she didn't even know what it was. She hoped it was love, after all, she was rushing headlong into a marriage with the man!

Harry pulled out a beautiful silver broomstick, with gossamer moon beam bristles, and whispered, "I'm taking you there on this. Just you and me. For old times' sake, you know." She smiled, thrilled. After all, her friendship with Harry was going to…well, change a little bit, now that she'd be spending a lot more time with Ron and everything.

"Okay," she said. They mounted the broomstick, and soon Hermione felt the heavenly breeze of the spirits whistle through her hair. "So, Hermione, you're ready for it?" Harry asked.

"Marriage, you mean?"

"Yeah. Kind of a big step, isn't it?"

"Yes, I know. But I've dated him forever…"

"I know. But, please, don't take this the wrong way…Oh, never mind."

"What?" Hermione had been curious to know.

"Well, I just don't know if you two are meant to be together. You're always squabbling…but hey, they say opposites attract. I'm sure you'll have a lovely life with him." Harry had turned around, a warm, sincere grin on his face, but Hermione had taken it the wrong way anyway.

"Are you saying that I'm making a mistake?" she had said stiffly.

"No! I'm just asking if you've given it enough thought. I don't want…say, four years from now, you to be hurt or something. Ron is really great, but…he's immature. I don't think he's ready for marriage."

Hermione's face glistened with all the tears she'd shed. Harry had wisdom beyond his years at that moment. Why hadn't she listened to him? Ron was insufferably immature; she should never have gotten married so young. And that hadn't even been all. The day had unmistakably deteriorated.

Finally, the wedding was due to start, but Ron was nowhere to be seen. For three hours, they had waited for him to show up. Hermione had cried her eyes out, and Harry and Ginny were doing their best to console her.

"Honestly, he wouldn't do something like this," they said, "Something must've come up."

Finally Mrs. Weasley apparated back to the Burrow to check on the clock where Ron was. Hermione had gone with her, and when she saw where the clock pointed, she almost erupted in rage.

"He's at a bloody bar! On our wedding day!"

Hermione got up out of the bed to get a drink of water, shooting a wary glance at a snoring Ron. He snored. Something else she could not stand! Even the most trivial of things seemed to annoy her these days. She sipped her glass in bitter contempt, remembering the state in which Ron had finally showed up. Drunk as hell. And she'd still married him! What had been wrong with her?

Something was still wrong with her. That's why she was having this affair. It was so wrong, on so many levels. She remembered running into him at Diagon Alley, something she had not expected. He was towing around an eleven-year-old boy, shopping for school for his first year of Hogwarts. She had been so surprised to see him she'd called out his name.

"Malfoy!" He spun around, his messy blonde hair flying in the wind, and had simply stared at her for a few moments.

"Yes?"

She didn't know what to say. She was embarrassed, she hadn't really planned having a conversation with him after so many years. "Oh…I don't know. Just surprised to see you after um, five years."

"Oh yeah?" He was walking back towards her now. "Granger…so, what are you doing here?" he asked.

"Just…looking for someone." She'd been looking for Ron, who was MIA for about a day and a half now. Probably drunk somewhere, or practicing Quidditch, or hanging out with Harry…anywhere but with her.

"Oh really. Who, might I ask?"

"Well, what are you doing here?" she said, desperately trying to reverse the tables.

"I am taking my nephew school supply shopping for Hogwarts. What does it look like I'm doing? You, of all people, should be smart enough to figure it out." And he had shot her a grin. She was taken aback.

"No 'mud blood' in that sentence?" She'd asked wryly.

"Eh," he said. "Childish insult. Unless you liked it when I talked dirty…" Another mischievous grin.

"Malfoy! You've got a kid with you!" She had been shocked.

"Oh yeah. C'mon, Brendon, what's next on the list…a wand, eh?…Well, I'll be seeing you around, Granger…just got to drop this kid off to his mother in a bit…" He'd turned and headed off to the wand shop.

Hermione recalled that she'd bumped into him again at the ice cream parlor, and things had only gone downhill from there.

A/N: Review, review, review!