This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoast Books, and Warner Bros., Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.
The gaunt young man struggled his way up the steep hill, brambles and various other forms of vegetation attacking his every step. He paused and smiled as he thought about the long difficult journey he had undertaken to come to this place. He had been walking for many days now, he hadn't eaten in some time and he was dying for a drink of water. With a final struggle he reached the crest of the hill and fully took in the scene below. There was the house… the house he loved so dearly… home to the only real family he had ever known, even though he was not related to them by blood, he was indeed home again. The young man looked down at his clothes, he was in complete disarray; his shoes muddied and ripped, his pants almost in shreds from walking through some of the roughest country imaginable. He gave a small laugh as he thought of his condition, because he didn't have to travel like this, he could have merely popped out of one place and reappeared in another place of his choosing, by using something called Apparition, a magical spell, or, he could have flown the magic broomstick he was carrying with him, you see… this young man was a wizard. Yes, he was Harry Potter, perhaps the most famous wizard of all time, especially after he defeated the evil Lord Voldemort in the final battle for control of the wizarding world. Harry Potter he thought to himself, hero, beloved by all, savior of the wizarding world… complete ass… He sighed, and began the journey down the far side of the hill, heading for the house that he thought of as his home… not sure what he was doing here… not sure if he would be welcome here…
Hermione Granger had a terrible headache. She had risen early that morning to help the lady of the house make the final preparations for the wedding of her youngest child and only daughter. Yes, Ginevra Molly Weasley was to be married this day and her Mum was driving Hermione insane. One would think that in a magical house… yes, everyone here was a witch or wizard, things would pretty much be under control, as it was, chaos reigned supreme.
"Hermione, Hermione!" Molly Weasley yelled for what seemed like the hundredth time that morning. "Do we have all of the flowers in place? Are all of the chairs set up as they should be? You've been keeping an eye on Fred and George haven't you? It would be just like them to muck up their sister's biggest day with one of those silly magic tricks from their shop!"
Hermione sighed and reassured Mrs. Weasley that her troublesome sons were behaving like perfect gentlemen, which was rather frightening now that she thought about it, and that the flowers and chairs were all set up according to plan.
"Food, do you think we will have enough food?" Molly now asked with a look of concern on her face. "What about Ginny's dress? Will you please give it a final check? Oh my, Gnomes. Did anyone remember to degnome the garden? I told Arthur to do it but you know how the men in this family are. Why aren't the boys here, helping you? I have got to put the finishing touches on the cake. Oh my, there just isn't enough time!"
Hermione smiled and put her arms around Mrs. Weasley in a big hug. "Mrs. Weasley, the boys were on their way down a moment ago, they will be here shortly to help. Ginny and I checked over her dress last night before going to bed, it's perfect. You have prepared more than enough food, enough to feed all of the students of Hogwarts during the sorting feast. I saw mister Weasley giving the garden one last look, I am sure it will be Gnomeless for the wedding."
Molly smiled at Hermione and hugged her tightly. "You know dear, I don't know what I would have done without you to help me with all of this. You are like another daughter to me. My great git of a son should get off his duff and let you know how he really feels about you dear. I know Ron loves you dear, I just don't want him to lose you."
"He hasn't lost me Mrs. Weasley, not yet," replied Hermione with a small tear in her eye.
Both women had tears in their eyes as Ron Weasley entered the room. Ron was the next to youngest Weasley child and he had been a close friend of Hermione for many years. Some people had thought that he and Hermione would get married someday, but it looked now like that would never happen.
"So what's up with you two?" Ron asked.
"Hermione is helping with the final preparations, something that you might lend a hand at young man!"
"All right, all right Mum, don't go getting your knickers in a bunch, I'll lend a hand."
Hermione grinned at Ron's comment. There was a time when he would have paid dearly for talking to his Mum like that, but now, with everything that they had endured during the final Voldemort war, she was just happy to have all of her children alive and safe.
"You take Hermione with you and check the grounds over once more. I want everything to be perfect."
Ron hung his head and shuffled out the door, Hermione trailing behind him.
Maybe the big lummox will finally see what he's got and let that poor girl know once and for all how much he loves her, Molly thought to herself.
"Beautiful day for a wedding," Hermione said, smiling brightly.
"I suppose if you are going to do it, this is as good a day as any," replied Ron.
"Ever the romantic aren't you Ronald," said Hermione, quickening her pace as if to leave Ron far behind.
"Hey, slow down will you? Besides, I can be romantic you know."
"Oh yes, Ronald, I know you love Quidditch, and I'm sure you positively adore the Chudley Cannons…"
"You know that's not what I meant."
"How would I know Ronald?"
"What do you mean, Hermione?"
"Please Ronald, stop being so thick…"
Ron hung his head and looked positively miserable. It was the last thing that Hermione had wanted to happen, she had loved Ron for so long now and she suspected that he loved her too, but he could never bring himself to say it. A tear flowed down her cheek as they stood there looking at each other.
"Hermione, don't cry, I don't know what I did but I didn't mean to make you cry. I wouldn't hurt you for anything… I… I…"
"She's right you know; you are a bit thick. Why don't you just go ahead and tell her that you love her?"
Ron and Hermione spun around at the sound of that familiar voice… a voice that they hadn't heard in ages… they yelled in unison… "Harry!"