Epilogue – Da Capo Al Fine
"Ginny sent new pictures of James-Hermes. And Harry threatens to err…" Hermione blushed.
"Hex my bollocks off and serve them to me for lunch if we don't attend the very same occasion next Sunday?" Severus supplied with a snort.
Hermione laughed. "Something like that."
"All right. We'll be there. Now, where are those ridiculous plants that you absolutely have to show me?"
"Here." Hermione pointed at a meadow overflowing with blooming daffodils. "Look how many of them there are! Do you remember what that means?"
Of course he did. He would never forget their wedding day. "Joy and happiness," he replied, his voice very soft.
"One day," Hermione said, her eyes filled with quiet determination, "maybe not tomorrow or next week …"
How Severus regretted the lines in her young face. How he mourned the lack of sparkle in her eyes. The absence of the shrill lilt of enthusiasm in her voice.
"… maybe not even next year." She offered him a wry smile.
But she reached for him. Her almost spidery thin, always cold fingers curled around his hand. Her smile turned wistful. It was too bitter yet to be called hopeful, but there was a new hint of sweetness to it that had been missing since her rescue.
Hermione stepped into Severus' embrace, her face turned up, her eyes never leaving his. "But I do believe that one day, one day, we'll be fine."
She drew his hand up to her lips and kissed his fingers.
P.S.: Hermione – as the resident know-it-all – was right of course. Eventually, they were fine, just fine, and they lived (mostly) happily ever after.
P.P.S.: "Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened." – Dr. Seuss
P.P.P.S.: As always, thank you for reading and for your many kind, interesting and encouraging comments that accompanied each episode of this crack!fic turned virtual penny dreadful. It was a long, wild ride, and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it.
... yes. There may be a sequel.
... okay. Cough. There is a sequel. If you're interested, take a peek at "The Book of the Dead".
ETA: A "mature"-rated, illustrated multi-media edition of this story is available at my website:
juno-magic. fancrone. net/blog/the-apprentice-and-the-necromancer (take out the spaces)