Disclaimer: MINE! Hee.
A/N: Happy birthday, Elf! This one's all for you, babe! ;)
"Ronald Weasley, I cannot believe you got me into this mess!"
"Me? Me? Who was the one who threw the first punch?"
"Well, you should have stopped me!"
"Oh, sure! Have you seen yourself when you're angry?"
"He started it!"
"So it's not my fault anymore?"
"Of course it is!"
Ron sighed in frustration. Standing in the middle of a Muggle jail with Hermione Granger was certainly not how he'd expected to spend his Saturday, no matter whose fault it really was.
He still couldn't believe it had happened. He had hoped to have a nice leisurely stroll in the park with his girlfriend, but instead he'd ended up being arrested. Arrested! And shockingly enough, it really wasn't his fault. Not that he would mention that to her, of course. Hermione had really become quite feisty in the last few years – more so than when he first met her. Granted, that's how he liked her, but sometimes it made for an interesting relationship. There was never a dull moment when Hermione Granger was your girlfriend. However, today's events just might have won the prize.
They had been walking in the park, hand in hand, enjoying each other's presence as well as the bout of warm weather that had recently come their way. It was idyllic – Ron had thought nothing could spoil their day.
Until Malfoy showed up.
Ron still couldn't figure out what Draco Malfoy had been doing wandering around a park in Muggle London, but it was irrelevant. The fact remained that he had been there, and he had taken it upon himself to ruin whatever happiness Ron and Hermione had been sharing.
Two years after leaving Hogwarts and that stupid git was still throwing insults.
"I can't believe this is happening," Hermione groaned. "What are my parents going to say when they hear I've been arrested? And for brawling in public, no less!" Ron snorted and she glared at him. "Honestly, Ron, it's not funny! My reputation in the Ministry will be ruined! I'll never get an upper-level position now!"
"Hermione, come on. It's not a big deal. Your mum and dad will understand."
"No, they won't, Ron!" She knew she was taking out on him the anger that was really directed toward herself, but she couldn't help it. "I'm a good girl! I always have been! But now, on the weekend that we're staying at my parents' house, we both get arrested! Do you know what they're going to think? They're going to think you're a bad influence on me, and… and they won't approve!" She flopped down on the concrete bench and put her head in her hands.
"Is that what they'll think, or is that what you think?"
She looked up, surprised. "Ron, that's not…"
"Isn't it?" he snapped. "Isn't that what you really mean? You're afraid that your parents won't approve because you're ashamed of me!"
"That is not what I meant, Ronald Weasley!" she huffed. "I can't believe you would even say such a thing!"
"Yeah, well, it's the truth, isn't it?" She could see his ears turning red with anger. "Just say it, Hermione. I'm not good enough for you!" He looked at her, waiting for a response, but Hermione just stood there.
Ron turned away, angry with Hermione and angry with himself. He'd always known it was too good to be true – he didn't deserve Hermione Granger and he never would. Merlin only knew how he'd gotten her in the first place. And, if he were completely honest with himself, this argument wasn't an eye-opener. It merely confirmed what his subconscious had been telling him for years.
He could sense her surprise and shock from across the cell without having to look at her. She was hurt, but so was he. He'd been planning to ask her parents tonight for permission to marry her, but now they definitely wouldn't give him a favorable response. Mr. Granger was already a bit suspicious of Ron for apparently trying to steal his daughter away, and after this… Not that it mattered anyway. Ron had just destroyed any hope that existed for Hermione and himself.
"Ron…" He didn't turn around. He couldn't face her, not yet. "Ron," she tried again, "I'm sorry."
She sounded like her heart was breaking, and he understood. A thousand words rushed through his brain, but he only spoke three. "I'm sorry, too."
Hermione slid off the hard bench and crossed the few feet between them. Taking his hand, she leaned against his side and whispered, "It's not true, you know. You are good enough for me."
"You don't have to try to make me feel better, Hermione," he lied. "I'll be fine."
She punched his arm – hard. "Ronald Weasley, you are such an idiot!"
He winced and rubbed the place where her fist had made contact. "Hermione, what…?"
"Don't you know me well enough by now to realize that I'm not going to lie to you just to soothe your ego?" she demanded. "Honestly, Ron! I love you, but sometimes I wonder if you believe it!"
"I do, but…"
"But what?" She pinned him with a glare. "Do you love me, Ron? Do you really love me?"
Ron's eyes widened. "You know I do."
"Then why don't you trust me?" she asked, her voice softening. She took his hand again and waited until he looked into her eyes. "I chose you, Ron. I want you with me. No one else is good enough for me – only you."
Ron looked down at her and saw the truth. He didn't deserve her, but he loved her, and that was all that mattered. "What would I do without you?"
She laughed. "I'd hate to imagine it."
She shook her head and grinned. "What?"
"Don't imagine me without you." He took a deep breath. "Marry me."
Her jaw dropped. "Are… are you… I mean… really?"
"Yeah," he breathed, suddenly feeling a bit dizzy. "Really. Marry me, Hermione. Please. I need you."
She stood for a moment, apparently robbed of the capability of speech. Then, with a squeal, she launched herself at him and hugged him as if her life depended on it. "Yes! Of course! Yes!"
He kissed her like it was the first time.
"When you two are done, would you like some help getting out of here?"
"Harry!" Hermione laughed and blushed beet red. "We were just…"
"I noticed." Harry grinned and nodded towards the police officer who was opening the cell door. "So… ready to go home?"
"They're letting us out?" Ron asked.
"Yeah, Hermione's parents posted bail, so unless you'd rather continue snogging in a jail cell…"
Hermione groaned. "My parents are here?"
Ron squeezed her hand. "It'll be all right," he assured her. "Remember, we've got good news that will definitely top the bad."
She grinned. "Yes, we do."
"Good news?" Harry asked. "You mean, other than the fact that you punched Malfoy?"
"He started it!" Hermione protested. "I only punched him because he said…"
"Hermione," Ron interrupted, "why don't we tell him the real good news?"
She rolled her eyes and grinned. "Well, I suppose…"
"Will someone please tell me what's going on?"
Ron laughed. "I, er… I asked Hermione to marry me, and she said yes."
Harry gaped at them. "You did? Finally!" He pulled Hermione into a one-armed hug and slapped Ron on the back. "Congratulations! It's about time, mate! Although, not very romantic actually, proposing in jail."
Ron gave his friend an offended look. "Excuse me! I'll have you know that it was incredibly romantic!"
Harry nodded, obviously not convinced. "Right. Hermione?"
"Aside from the fact that we were behind bars and that this place smells like urine…" Hermione laughed. "Yes, it was quite romantic."
Ron grinned. "Something to tell our children someday."
"Ronald Weasley, don't you dare tell our children this story!"
He dodged the swat she aimed at him and laughed. "Fine, I'll tell our grandchildren instead."
He leaned down and kissed the top of her head. "Don't worry, Hermione. This will be our little secret."
"Daddy, tell us the story again!"
"The one where you and Mum went to jail with the Muggles!"
"It's our favorite!"
"All right, all right. But don't tell your mum."
"Well, we were walking in the park…"