Nine Years Later
"Mr. Potter, there have been some complications. You'll have to wait outside."
Harry was escorted outside by the Healers. He ran a hand through his long, messy hair, growling. Couldn't they see his wife needed him?
He began pacing the corridor of the hospital, growing more and more worried with each step. What if something bad happened? What if she didn't make it? Harry shook himself. Now he was just being paranoid. She'd be fine.
A healer appeared from the door, but she stalked right past Harry before he could open his mouth. It was a while before anything happened, and Harry continued pacing faster and faster, growing more apprehensive, until the door creaked open once again.
"Mr. Potter?" The Healer's face was straight, but there was a gleam in her eyes that signalled good news. "Your wife wants to see you." Nervously, Harry stepped into the room.
Hermione was lying on the bed, looking exhausted and resting her eyes. Sunlight was filling in through the window, sparkling on her skin, which was covered in a thin layer of sweat. Her brown eyes flickered open as he approached her.
"Are you ok?" Harry whispered.
Hermione gave him a tired smile. "I'm fine."
Harry beamed, placing his hand on hers. "Where is it?"
"The healers are weighing him and cleaning him up."
Harry's grin broadened. "Him?"
Warmth filled Hermione's eyes, and she entwined their fingers tenderly. "Our son," she said softly. Harry swelled up with pride and joy, and he kissed her sweetly just as a healer walked in, carrying a tiny bundle wrapped up in blankets.
Hermione suddenly seemed to be filled with energy, and she looked at the baby with a hungry expression in her eye. The healer handed the baby to her, and Harry stared down at the newborn in awe. He was perfect. Fine brown hair covering his head, five fingers on each hand that were curled around a lock of Hermione's hair, and hazy blue eyes that were already turning brown…
"He's beautiful," sighed Hermione happily.
"Yeah," Harry whispered. "He is."
"But Harry," Hermione said with mock seriousness, "now we really do have to find a name for him."
Harry grinned. "I thought we agreed on Damien?"
"You agreed on Damien," Hermione rolled her eyes, and then looked at the baby thoughtfully. "What about Hugo?"
"Urgh," Harry cringed, "definitely Damien."
"How about… Terence?"
"How about Damien?"
"Oh! I know! Damien!" Harry snickered as Hermione hit him playfully. There was a short pause.
"William…" Hermione muttered thoughtfully. "Yeah… Harry, what do you think of William?"
"I like that," said Harry slowly. "William… It goes with his brother and sister's names too, doesn't it? Connor, Venice and William Potter… Kind of like a tribute to Bill, too, eh?"
"My little Billy," Hermione sighed as she rocked the baby gently. William gave a tiny yawn and closed his eyes. Harry watched his wife and newborn son contently for a minuet, before a thought struck him.
"Hey, I need to owl Ron, tell him the happy news." Harry rushed to the door, stopping suddenly as he placed a hand on the handle. "Hey, Hermione, you know that dog we're buying the kid's for Christmas?" Hermione nodded. "Can we name it Damien?"
Hermione rolled her eyes as her husband exited, grinning.
Ronald Weasley lay on his sofa, snoring. He and Harry had had a hard day in their job as Aurors, and he had come back only to have Harry dump his kids on him, screaming bloody murder about Hermione and babies and hospital. Ron had been exhausted, as he had also had to baby-sit Carlos and Liam, Charlie's two youngest sons, as Charlie and his wife Michelle had taken the eldest Kevin to St. Mungos earlier this morning. Not to mention Maggie, one of his and Luna's four daughters, had been up crying all night. He was now having a well-earned kip on his sofa, while his niece and godson were amusing themselves by gluing crisps to his face.
"Stop it, yous two!" hissed a voice. Four- year- old Venice Potter lay sprawled out on the floor, glaring at her older brother and his friend through emerald green eyes. These, along with her bushy raven- black hair, were why everyone said she reminded them of her dad, though most of her facial features resembled her mother. She had also inherited her mother's famous intelligence and loved to teach others about her skills: in fact, at that moment she was trying to teach Danielle, the older of Ron and Luna's one- year- old quadruplets to colour properly. She was very good at colouring; always stayed between the lines, like Mummy had shown her, but Danni kept messing it up.
"But its fun!" giggled six-year-old Aren Weasley, sticking another crisp on her uncle's nose. With intense blue eyes, long, dark red hair, a pale, clear complexion and perfectly straight, white teeth, you could tell she was going to be very pretty when she grew up. But it was to be expected, really; her mother had been a quarter vela, and Bill had been pretty good-looking, too.
Her parent's deaths two years ago had hit Aren hard: Fleur had died in a tragic potion explosion: she had been trying to find a cure for the curse Bill had. Bill had followed shortly after, had died of the curse that had been afflicted upon him seven years previously, leaving his young daughter in Ron's hands.
Shortly after that, Ron had introduced her to Luna Lovegood, whom he had been dating for quite some time, and who he planned to propose to. Fortunately, Luna was something of a comforter to Aren, as she had lost her Mother at an early age too, and knew what it was like.
"Poor Unkie Ron," Venice pouted.
"Hey, Ven, would you keep a lookout for Auntie Luna?" whispered Connor, Venice's brother, also six. He was a small, mischievous little boy, with a cheeky grin that Uncle Remus always said reminded him of James. While he had the famous Potter unruly black hair, he had inherited Hermione's warm brown eyes, too.
"NO! It'd serve you right if she knew, Connor!"
"Pft, don't be such a tell-tale!"
"I'm NOT a tell-tale!"
"Am-" They were cut off by a loud screech at the windowsill. There was a handsome bird clawing at the pane of glass- Horatio, the Potter's screech owl. He was neither as beautiful nor as clever as Hedwig had been, but he did the job.
Ron snorted awake and rubbed his eyes blearily, feeling the crisps scattered along his nose. "Hey, who stuck this gunk to my face?" he muttered groggily, crushing them away. Connor and Aren stood up to point dramatically at Charlie, one of the girls, who was sucking a pen innocently.
Muttering, "Yeah, sure it was," Ron opened the window and let Horatio hop in. There was a hurriedly scribbled note attached to his leg.
Hermione had the baby. We named him William. Bring the kids.
"Blimey," Ron muttered, and stood up, stretching. He peered down at the two black haired children. "Come on, sprogs. Want to meet your new brother?"
Connor and Venice glanced at each other with wide-eyed curiosity, before quickly tugging their coats on, chattering animatedly. Ron chuckled at their enthusiasm, before calling upstairs to Luna, who was feeding Kathy, the youngest of the quads.
"Lu! Luna! We're just popping off to St. Mungo's, they've had the baby!"
"Daddy! Daddy!" Harry looked up as he heard a familiar squeal. His four-year- old daughter's head had just popped through the door, and she ran towards him, her shoes squeaking on the polished floor.
Harry smiled, and then put a finger to his lips. Venice jumped on his lap and clamped her hands over her mouth.
"Why shh?" she whispered through her hands.
"Mummy's sleeping." He indicated the bed, on which Hermione was sleeping. "And so's Billy."
"Who?" she asked, just as Ron, Connor and Aren entered.
"Connor, don't wake your mother!" Harry exclaimed as Connor raced over to Hermione's bed. Too late. He had jumped on it. "Connor Sirius Albus Potter!"
Hermione opened her eyes groggily, and smiled down at her son. "Hello, you four," she yawned. "Have you introduced them to the new arrival, Harry?"
Harry gently lifted William out of his cot. "Here he is," he said, showing them the baby. "Your new brother."
"He's red and wrinkly," said Connor, gazing at the infant intently, "like Venice was."
"Hey!" said Venice indignantly.
"How did you remember that?" Harry said, amazed. Connor shrugged, grinning.
"Aw, cute little fellah, isn't he?" said Ron, his (normal-sized) magical eye fixing on the baby. "And how are you, Herms?"
"Ok, thanks," Hermione peered at him. "Err, Ron, why have you got a crisp on your eyebrow?" Ron hastily wiped it away.
"What's his name?" asked Aren, shying away from the baby and over to Connor.
"William." Harry carefully placed him back in his cot, glad he hadn't woke up.
"I think that's a wonderful name for your son, Harry." Luna appeared at the door, pushing a four seated pram, the quadruplets fidgeting around inside it. "I also think that Laurence Percival Augustus would be nice," she added dreamily. Luna had come back to Earth a bit since she became a mother, but still had her moments.
"Laurence Percival Augustus Potter? That, plus the two middle names? I think that's bordering on child abuse!" Ron joked. Everybody laughed, but somehow Harry didn't think he would be naming his next son Laurence Percival Augustus.
Once Ron and Luna had left, they had other visitors: Hermione's parents dropped by to fuss over their grandchildren, as did Mr. and Mrs. Weasley, who treated them as though they were their grandchildren, Remus and Tonks (who were to be William's godparents) bought little Teddy, even Neville took some time off book marking to come and visit them. Finally, the Malfoys came.
As Venice was showing Harry a picture she had drawn at Unkie Ron's, the door clicked open, revealing a pale, pointed little face.
"Leo! What did I tell you about barging into rooms here? It could be the wrong one," scolded a voice on the other side of the door.
"Sorry, Mother," said Leo, rolling his eyes. "But it's not the wrong room, look, there's Connor!"
He darted over to sit by Connor. He was the same age as Connor, and the two were close friends. The door swung open, and Ginny Malfoy breezed in, beaming. She was clutching the hand of a small three-year-old girl, her second child, Imogene.
"Hermione! Harry!" She bent down to hug Hermione, and then threw her arms around Harry. "Aw, congratulations, you two!" A lot of things had changed about Ginny, but thankfully she was still as friendly and fiery as ever.
Another figure appeared at the door. Draco Malfoy stood grudgingly in the doorway, looking as though he would rather be anywhere but there. Slowly, he strode foreword, glaring around with contempt. Ginny had probably had to drag him there by his pointy blond goatee.
"Sorry we're so late," Ginny said. "Draco was having a little strop," she added in an undertone.
While Ginny was wearing robes of emerald green and the children white, Malfoy was wearing his usual black work robes, and there was a small child in his arms, playing with his hat. This was Serenity, the Malfoy's youngest and only red-haired child. As Ginny often said, she was the perfect combination of both her parents: dark red hair, silvery grey eyes, and a pale, pointed face beneath a coating of freckles.
Imogene definitely looked a lot like Malfoy. With white-blond hair, grey eyes, pale skin and pointed features, she could have been a miniature female Draco.
Like his sister, Leo also favoured his father in appearance. He looked just like Harry expected Draco had at age six, except his hair was tied back in a short ponytail, he had Ginny's warm brown eyes and a cheeky grin instead of a haughty smirk.
Of course, Leo wasn't Leo's real name. Draco wouldn't have allowed that. His first name was Tyl, Tyl Leonardo Malfoy, but, like Tonks, he preferred not to be called by that name. Instead everyone called him by his middle name, Leo, except his father and paternal grandparents.
Malfoy sat Serenity down on the carpet, and then nodded curtly to Harry. "Potter," he sneered, "Granger-Potter," he said to Hermione.
"How are you feeling, Hermione?" said Ginny concernedly.
"Tired," Hermione grinned, "but that little angel was worth it."
"Aww, he's just adorable!" Ginny cooed to the sleeping baby in the glass cot. "Draco, isn't he adorable?"
"Precious," Malfoy scowled.
Ginny ignored him. "What does my little goddaughter think of her new brother?" she smiled at Venice.
"He's really small, Aunty Ginny," Venice giggled.
Harry felt a slight tug at his knees, and looked down to see Serenity pulling at his trousers. Smiling, he lifted her up so she could see the baby. Giggling, she stretched out a sticky little hand and was about to pat the baby when Ginny caught her.
"No, Reni, no touching the baby."
"Ahh!" Leo had come to see what the fuss was about, and he pressed his face against the glass. "Why's it in that box, Dad?"
"It's not a box, Tyl, it's…" but Malfoy trailed off. All three of his children had been born at the Manor, and he had never seen a glass cot.
"It's a cot," Harry explained, "it's what they use in hospitals to put the baby in."
"Ohh…" Leo turned to Ginny. "Mum, when you have yours, can I put it in the fish tank?"
Hermione's head snapped up. "What do you mean, hers, Leo?"
"Leo!" said Ginny, exasperated. "I told you not to mention it! …Well, now the cat's out of the bag…" she inched closer to her husband, "Draco and I are having another baby!"
"Ginny! That's wonderful!" squealed Hermione.
"Yeah, congratulations!" said Harry, silently wondering what on earth had possessed Ginny and Malfoy to have four kids, especially since Leo on his own was quite a handful.
"What cat, Mum?" said Leo, puzzled.
Malfoy, who was smirking at Ginny proudly, turned to Imogene, who had taken one look at William and ran behind her Father's knee. "What's the baby going to be, Princess?" he asked softly.
"Boy," Imogene replied shyly.
"Yeah, I always wanted a brother!" said Leo, his eyes lighting up. "I asked Dad for one, but instead I got two girl brothers." He glared at Imogene, and she glared back.
"Tyl," growled Malfoy.
"And we could all play Quidditch… me and my brother against you and yours, eh, Connor?"
"Cool," grinned Connor.
"And then we could pelt you with bludgers, Dad!"
"Humph, indeed," muttered Malfoy.
"I don't know what I'll do if it's not a boy," said Ginny quietly to Harry. Suddenly Leo jumped up and walked over to the door. "Where do you think you're going?"
"Little boy's room," mumbled Leo sheepishly. Malfoy opened his mouth to speak. "I can go on my own, Father, I'm not a baby!"
"I'll go with him too," said Connor, leaping off the bed.
"They'll be fine, Draco, it's just round the corner," added Ginny.
Scowling, Malfoy nodded, and the two boys disappeared.
"So, thought of any names, Gin?" asked Hermione.
"Yes, Scorpius," said Draco smugly before Ginny had opened her mouth.
Ginny gave him a quelling look. "I've told you time and time again, we are not naming our son Scorpius, Draco." She turned back to Hermione. "I was thinking of sticking with the animal theme, what with Draco and Leo. I quite like Aquila, Falk, Gavin, or… Corbin's especially nice, I think."
"Scorpius is an animal-based name," muttered Malfoy moodily.
"A scorpion, Draco! I mean, really-" but suddenly there was a small explosion noise from directly upstairs. They all stared at the ceiling in shock, and William started crying loudly.
"What's that little menace done now?" growled Malfoy, and rushed off to find Connor and Leo. There was an awkward silence, in which Harry had managed to calm William down, until Malfoy came back, gripping the shoulders of two squirming boys. There was sugar in Connor's hair, and a streak of ketchup across Leo's cheek.
"They were playing Exploding Snap in the canteen," Malfoy sneered, glowering at his son icily. "Sent food and cutlery flying everywhere."
"Boys!" scolded Hermione, "that was wrong!" Connor giggled feebly and hung his head. Leo cackled, and hid behind the bed.
"Sorry, Mummy!" he called angelically.
"Don't say sorry to me, it's the canteen staff you need to apologise to," said Ginny coolly. "Come on, I'll take you."
"I'll take him, Gin," said Draco hurriedly, obviously not wanting to be left alone with the Potters.
"You go too, Connor," Hermione told Connor, and he skittered over to join Leo and Draco.
"Hey, Ginny," whispered Harry, "you don't think you could have Venice for a while, could you? It's just we haven't been alone with the baby since this morning."
"No problem." Ginny winked. "Girls, how would you like to get some ice-creams?"
"Yeah!" said Venice and Imogene enthusiastically, and Reni clapped her hands happily. They followed Ginny out of the ward, leaving Harry and Hermione alone.
William had settled down now, and was staring at Harry's ponytail as though he wanted to tug at it. Sighing contently, Hermione sat back down on the bed, and Harry handed her the baby. There was a minuets silence, and then Hermione spoke.
"Harry… did I ever tell you what I saw in the Mirror of Erised that time?"
"This. You, me… and a baby."
Through the silent streets of Godric's Hollow walked a man with long jet black hair, emerald green eyes and a lightning bolt shaped scar. He carried on trudging up to the outskirts of the village, up a hill, his eyes set on a lone little house standing, solitary, at the top.
When he got there, he didn't knock on the door or go inside; instead he opened the creaking wooden gate and stepped into the garden. There were two gravestones at the end of the lawn, to which he advanced.
The man pulled out his wand, and from the end trickled a small fountain of water, which fell onto the white flowers growing on the two graves. They were lilies.
"Hi Mum," he whispered. "Hi Dad.
"Ron and Hermione send their love. She's had the baby, by the way. We named him William. William Rubeus Alastor Potter. You'd have loved him.
"You can tell Sirius he's now an Uncle. Rebecca had twin girls. Lyra and Yvaine Black- Snape. I suppose he'd have killed Severus by now, if he was still here.
"I'm sorry I haven't been to visit for so long. It's been hectic recently, what with Hermione being pregnant and picking Venice's muggle primary school. She was showing her first signs of magic the other day. Levitated a ruler. Hermione was ecstatic.
"Connor's doing really well in school, too. He wants to join one of those junior Quidditch league teams, be a seeker, like his old man. He's really good, though, inherited the family skills with a snitch, I guess. I think he could do it.
"I'm… I'm just sorry you couldn't be here to see any of this. You'd have been so proud of them. They are of you."
With one last look at the sky, the man walked away.