Hermione slowly made her way to the old willow tree on the edge of her estate. She had visited this spot almost every day for the past twenty years to the day.
She sat down in the tree's shade, leaning against the thick trunk and sighing. She closed her eyes and when she reopened them, tears had begun to form.
"I miss you," she whispered, "So much it's hard to breath if I think about it for too long. He's a great man you know. I could tell when we sang "Happy Birthday" to him that he missed you." Tears began slipping down her cheeks but she made no attempt to wipe them away. "Lily is so beautiful. She's got red hair, but her eyes still haven't turned any specific color. James is so proud to be a father," Hermione cried, a bittersweet smile gracing her face for a moment.
"Mum?" A deep voice called out from behind her.
Hermione turned to see her son, James, walking towards her. Noticing her tears, he knelt down and wrapped his arms around her shaking frame.
"I miss him too," he whispered after a minute.
"He would have been such a great father to you," Hermione whispered. "He loved you so much. I remember just after we found out, he would tell you stories every night. I kept reminding him that you were still the size of a pea at most, but he didn't care. He said that he was making up for the stories he might never get to tell you. He was so proud the day you were born," Hermione whispered, her eyes glazed over as she went over that memory.
Hermione couldn't stop the tears of joy as a nurse handed her her son. "You look just like your daddy don't you? Yes," Hermione cooed to the baby. "Let's go see your daddy okay?" She smiled as a nurse wheeled her into a private room. The medi-wizard that delivered her son was waiting in the room for her.
"Hermione," a cracked voice whispered from the bed.
"You have a son," Hermione smiled, grasping his cut hand.
"C-Can I hold him?"
"Of course," Hermione replied, handing her son over to his father.
"He's beautiful," he smiled, though Hermione could see the pain in his eyes. "I love you, James," he cooed, kissing the baby on the top of his head. "So much. I wanted to be there for you." Tears started slipping down the man's face. "I'm sorry," he whispered.
Hermione crawled into the bed beside her husband of barely a year, her tears mingling with his. "I love you," she whispered, pressing her lips against his. "More than I've ever loved another person."
"I love you too, Mione," he forced a smile.
"I don't want to lose you," Hermione sobbed, leaning her head against his.
"The people we love never truly leave us," he whispered into her hair. "They live on in our hearts."
"But I need you. I can't go on without you," Hermione cried, looking into his eyes.
"You've got so much to live for. I just want you to be happy. If that means marrying someone else, you have my blessing," he told her, his breathing beginning to get ragged.
"I'll never be able to love anyone else," Hermione whispered, holding him against her.
"Tell James that I love him," the man whispered, trying to say everything that needed to be said. Hermione nodded as silent tears slid down her cheeks. "And remember that I love you, forever and always."
"Forever and always," Hermione whispered, kissing his forehead. "I love you."
And with his final breath, he kissed her one last time.Present"Mum," James whispered. "He is a good father to me."
"What?" Hermione asked, turning to look at her son.
"I am who I am because I'm his son. Every story you told me at bedtime, every hug, every kiss, he was there. He exists in you," James told her, tears shining in his eyes. "He lives on in you. And when I'm not with you, he's in my heart."
"I love you, James. So does he. All he ever wanted in life was to be a father," Hermione smiled.
"And he's a great father. It's hard not having him around," James told her, his tears beginning to fall. "I miss him everyday. I would give up everything I have to have him back. But then I think about it. He gave up his life so that I can hold my daughter. So that I could get married. So that I could at least keep you," he whispered, kissing Hermione on the forehead. "I love you, Mum. Don't stay out here too long," James told her and walked back towards the house.
Hermione sighed and stood up. Although the tears were still falling, she smiled as she ran her hand across the top of the marble gravestone. "I love you," she sighed, setting a single red rose on the top of the marker. She ran her hand across the words etched forever into the piece of stone, before returning to the house.
Harry Potter. Loving Husband, Father, and Friend - Forever and Always.
A/N: hey everyone...so sorry i havent put anything up on YRMU...slight WB but i've been really busy...:(...i hope you all like this...just a plot bunny that made me cry a lot...i know it's short, but i just needed to get it typed out...hope you like it and PLEASE review...i love you all!