DISCLAIMER: I own nothing, but the idea for this story. Also, please be reminded that since the release of Book 7, this story is an AU!
Hermione Granger stumbled through the front door of her Manhattan loft. Arms filled with groceries, she barely made it to the counter that separated her kitchen from her living room.
"Find every thing ok?" Draco stepped out into the living room, body still glistening from his shower. There was an emerald towel tied around his waist, but Hermione's imagination filled in the gaps. A whimsical smile appeared on her face. Her fiancée easily picked up on it.
Crossing the room, the Malfoy heir slipped an arm around his future wife. "How was your day?" he asked, burying his face in her hair.
"Fine," she replied, feigning control. "How was yours?"
"It's starting to look up," he grinned, placing his lips over hers. They shared a delicious kiss, filled with both passion and comfort.
She relaxed against him, completely at ease. The young witch had not been thrilled when they had first decided to come here. They had had no real money, no connections, and no prospects for either. Though she was proud of herself for doing some spontaneous and for following her gut instinct to be with the man she loved, she realized that a couple could not live on love alone. They were living on the streets, using their magic to transfigure food, clothes, and shelter when Muggles were not around. Things between them were rough and getting more strained by the day as both of them searched for work. She was beginning to think that she had made the wrong choice. Then Draco asked her to be his wife.
They had been in the middle of Central Park, walking aimlessly when he had suddenly just stopped. At first she had thought they were being attacked, then he fell to his knees. The moment she saw him on the ground, she had lost all feeling in her body. A type of euphoria had enveloped her to the point where when she said yes, she could barely form the single syllable word. The joy she felt made her lose sight of their short comings, until the Howler came.
Draco's family had disowned him immediately following his decision to marry Hermione. They had cut off all funds and had informed him that he was no longer considered a Pureblood. Much to the relief of the Grangers, that was where it ended. Hermione knew that it was possible for Lucius to take his wrath further, most likely to the point where someone would get hurt, so she had asked Alastor Moody for assistance. Neither she nor Draco had heard a thing since Mad-Eye had agreed to keep a watchful eye on the Malfoy Manor.
New York was not the type of life she had envisioned for herself, but six months after their arrival every thing had fallen into place. Draco had taken a job at a business firm that dealt with both Muggle and Wizarding customers. He was enjoying his work because it allowed him to see the differences between the two groups. Even now, four months after he had taken the position he would come home with an astonished look on his face and ask her something as silly as "Why do women have so many ways of removing facial hair?"
Hermione had turned down the position from the Ministry. She had opted to start her own line of work. She had leased a humble space on the upper west side, where she taught young wizards and witches about Muggles and how to appropriately interact with them. Most of her students were not attendees of Hogwarts. In fact most of them were not privy to a solid wizarding education; therefore she had begun interviewing other Muggle-born witches and wizards so she could expand her school's offerings.
"You never did answer my question," Draco murmured in her ear, as Hermione began unpacking the multitude of bags she had brought in.
"I wouldn't have come back empty-handed," she mused out loud.
They were having a celebratory dinner and had invited Harry, the Weasley clan, her parents, and a few Slytherins. Surprisingly a couple of Draco's old mates had turned a new cheek. Crabbe and Goyle were not among the crowd, but Bletchley and Flint were. Flint was even bringing a date, the old Gryffindor's Chaser, Katie Bell. As it were, Draco and Hermione's relationship was not that abstract. It appeared that since the war was over many new alliances were forming.
"You know that everyone is arriving in less than two hours," Draco scuffed.
Hermione smiled, knowingly. "Yes dear."
"You haven't started the food yet."
"You haven't showered yet."
"Do you want me to help?" he asked.
Hermione took her wand out of her back jean's pocket. "I think I've got everything under control."
Draco cocked an eyebrow. "I thought you said we shouldn't use magic in the house, now that we are living near Muggles."
Hermione grinned. "Sometimes rules need to be broken. After all, they are more like guidelines anyway."
"Ok, who are you and what have you done to my fiancée?"
Hermione tucked her wand away with a devious smirk. In one swift motion she had ripped off Draco's towel. "Hermione Granger, bookworm extraordinaire is gone for the moment."
The young Malfoy smiled. "Well in that case, why are you still dressed? Don't you need to be naked in order to properly shower?"
"Hmmm…I believe you are right."
Two hours and one round of juicy intercourse later, Hermione was serving dinner to her guests. Draco had kept everyone entertained while she had gotten dressed. Thankfully no one had noticed her jelly legs as she had welcomed them into her home. Harry and Ginny had been the first to arrive, followed by Marcus and Katie. Things between Harry and Marcus had been a little tense at first, due to some unfinished Quidditch business but after Katie and Ginny had started their own Quidditch discussion the tension dispersed. Now the four were joking as if they had been friend their entire lives.
Fred and George were constantly on either side of Bletchley, also regaling tales of past games. Ron had brought along Luna Lovegood, an interesting pick, but Hermione had always found her to be polite if not a bit strange. Mr. and Mrs. Weasley remarked on the size of the loft and the type of neighborhood it was. Mr. Weasley was repeatedly questioning Draco on what he had learned about "the other side" aka the Muggles. Her parents had arrived right after the Weasleys, gushing over Draco as they always did now. Fleur and Bill had been the last to come only slightly later than Percy, who had arrived stag. Charlie had not been in attendance due to some trouble in Romania.
Everyone took their seats at the table, except for Draco, who remained standing, a glass of wine in his hand. "As you all know, Hermione and I are getting married next summer. Despite the ridicule of my father, we feel that our relationship is accepted and I am toasting to many more. To Katie and Marcus, our kindred, my dearest hopes for a bright and wonderful future. To Ron and Luna, may all your quirks be loved and appreciated. To Fleur and Bill, we understand the differences in your worlds. United you are strong and your love is worth the fight. To Arthur and Molly, you have a long standing tradition of joy and love, cherish it always. To the Grangers, I thank you for letting me have your daughter and I hope we will be as happy as you. And finally to Harry and Ginny-,"
"Draco, if you don't mind, I'd like to finish the toast," Harry announced, standing up. Draco nodded and took his seat, slipping his hand around Hermione's.
"What's going on?" she whispered.
"Shhh, just wait."
Harry cleared his throat. "Ginny, I have loved you for a long time and this relationship has made me so happy. I have always wanted a family but in order to make that a reality I need to ask you something." Harry fell to one knee. Ginny gasped. "Ginerva Weasley, will you marry me?"
Screams and cheers went up through the entire loft. Hermione sat back with Draco, watching her friends…her family. Sheer joy was pulsating through her. She was getting married. Her best friends were getting married. Her parents were happy. Her friends accepted her relationship with the Slytherin bad boy and for once she wasn't worried about the future. Everything was as it should be.
And all thanks to the firewhiskey.