Title: Something New
Rating: T for some language and normal teenage behavior
Disclaimer: Harry Potter and its affiliated characters do not belong to me. I mean no copyright infringement.
Summary: Ginny and Harry are getting married and Ron and Hermione are, of course, in their bridal party. The trouble is, Ron and Hermione can barely stand to be in the same room.
Spoilers: All books including Deathly Hallows.
Chapter 1 – "Parallel Lives"
"Will you marry me?"
She brought her hands to her mouth, simultaneously gasping. It wasn't every day that a girl was presented with a beautiful solitaire diamond and those four words that she longed to hear every day since she knew what marriage was.
"Yes!" She exclaimed, practically throwing herself across the table and flinging her arms around his neck. She kissed him with such fervor that he was sure he was going to tip over onto the floor.
Neither of them noticed that the restaurant had broken into applause and everyone was staring at them. A man, sitting at the next table, nudged Harry in the ribs and said something about him being one lucky guy. Harry ignored him, concentrating solely on Ginny who was holding her hand up to the chandelier above their table to admire her latest accessory.
Harry reached across the table, taking her right hand in his.
"I was going to wait until Valentine's Day, but I just couldn't wait any longer. Do you like it?"
"I love it!" She said, squeezing his hand. "I can't wait to tell Hermione!"
Hermione dropped her satchel onto the floor, not caring that some of the overflowing contents spilled out. She stripped off her coat and slung it over the back of the blue arm chair in her living room. Her feet were killing her, her head was pounding, and her hand was cramped from writing all day. Although being the head, and only employee of the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures department, was her dream job, it didn't mean that she wasn't overworked. And overworked didn't even begin to describe how she felt at that moment.
As she flopped down onto the couch, her stomach grumbled, reminding her that she hadn't eaten since breakfast. She looked into her kitchen, which was no bigger than a bathroom and sighed. She knew there was nothing edible in her refrigerator. She hadn't been shopping in at least a month and had eaten the rest of the spaghetti and meatballs that Mrs. Weasley had sent over to her the day before for breakfast that morning. When Mrs. Weasley began sending food over with Ginny and Harry whenever they came to visit, Hermione would send it back with them, insisting that, while she appreciated the gesture, she was fine on her own. As weeks passed, though, and her job became more demanding, she began to accept the meals. Now, Mrs. Weasley sent food over at least three or four times a week and Hermione appreciated it immensely.
A knock at the door shattered Hermione's thoughts of a big plateful of spaghetti. Not wanting to get up, Hermione reached for her wand from her pocket and pointed it at the door.
"Alohamora," she mumbled with little energy.
The door swung open, revealing Ginny standing on the other side with a large bowl in her hand.
"You know you shouldn't open the door without seeing who's on the other side first," Ginny said, closing the door behind her and walking into the living room.
"Is that homemade soup?" Hermione asked, sniffing the air. She stood up.
"You know, I'm beginning to think that the only reason you like seeing me is because I bring you food."
Ginny brought the bowl into the kitchen, sure to put her left hand on the outside so that Hermione could see her ring. Hermione followed the scent and quickly identified it as turnip and parsley soup, her favorite. She took a soup bowl from the strainer it was drying in, grabbed a spoon, and began to dish out the soup into the bowl.
"Long day?" Ginny asked, getting two glasses down from the cabinet next to the stove that Hermione never used.
"Long week," Hermione corrected. She dipped the spoon into the bowl and brought the soup to her lips. "Long month, actually." The warm liquid slid down her throat, making her smile.
Ginny opened the refrigerator door with her left hand, searching for something to drink.
"Orange juice?" Ginny asked, pulling out the half empty carton. "That's all you have?"
Ginny unscrewed the cap, again with her left hand. She was doing her best to get Hermione to notice the sparkling rock that now lived on her finger.
"Yeah, but it's probably…" She poured the orange liquid into one of the glasses. Several chunks fell into the glass, splashing the juice around. "Expired," Hermione finished.
"Okay, that's it!" Ginny said, dumping the orange juice down the sink and slamming the glass down on the counter.
"Sorry," Hermione replied cautiously, not particularly sure why having expired orange juice made Ginny so upset. It wasn't Hermione's fault that she hadn't had time to go shopping for food. "Next time I'll have more than orange juice."
"It's not about the juice," Ginny whined, holding out her left hand.
Hermione looked at her hand and smiled. She dropped her bowl of soup on the counter, the contents sloshing over the side, and shrieked.
"He asked you? He finally asked you?" She exclaimed, giddily throwing her arms around her friend and hugging her tightly.
"Yes, and you didn't even notice my ring even though I was practically throwing it in your face!" She said, with a smile on her face.
Hermione let her go, but grabbed her hand and squeezed it.
"I'm sorry, Ginny. " She began to lead Ginny into the living room, grabbing her bowl of soup on the way. "Tell me everything." They both sat down on the couch next to each other. "When did he ask you?"
"Last night at dinner."
Hermione quickly swallowed the contents that were in her mouth.
"And you didn't call me?"
"Well, we were a little…preoccupied afterwards."
They both giggled as only a recently engaged woman and her best friend could.
"Okay, so how did he ask you?"
"Well, we were at dinner and it was this really nice restaurant and we were in the middle of this conversation and he just blurted it out."
"He just blurted it out?" Hermione asked, taking another bite of soup.
"Yup. Just a simple 'will you marry me.'"
"And what did you do? What did you say?"
"Well, I was stunned at first, but eventually my heart stopped beating so loudly and I managed to say yes."
"Oh, that sounds so…like Harry."
"Well, he might not be the most eloquent but, I love him. Merlin, Hermione, I'm getting married! Me…married! Can you believe it?"
"No, but let me see that ring again." Ginny proudly stuck out her hand. Hermione took it in her own and stared at the diamond. She moved Ginny's hand back and forth and up and down, letting the diamond shimmer. "It's gorgeous."
"I know! Can you believe he picked it out all by himself?"
"Oh, Ginny, I'm so happy for you."
"I don't think I've ever been so happy!" Ginny gushed. "But there's so much to do. So much to plan and think about. And I was hoping you'd…help me."
"Of course I will. Anything you need, you just let me know."
"Actually, I was wondering…if you'd consider being my maid of honor."
Tears began to well in Hermione's eyes. She flung her arms around Ginny's neck.
"Oh Ginny! I'd be so honored!"
"I was hoping you'd say that. Oh, and we've only got three months to plan it."
Startled, Hermione practically fell back.
"We don't want to wait."
"Three months to plan an entire wedding?"
Hermione's excitement was fading. Three months wasn't enough time. She still had so much to do at work. End of the year reports still had to be written from the end of last year and it was already the beginning of February. Not to mention that the ministry said they would allow her to get an assistant so she was going to have to start interviewing possible candidates and…
"We are going to throw you the best wedding you could ever hope for," Hermione said, smiling weakly. Three months might not have been a long time, but it was going to have to be enough.
Ron trudged into the room. He tripped over a pair of shoes he had left there that morning. Cursing loudly, he headed straight for the couch. He had never known that helping George with his joke shop could be so difficult. The job had started easy enough with Ron just helping out with odd ends, but, before long, they had opened a second store and Ron was the manager in charge. He had one full time and two part time employees that he had to manage, not to mention he had to constantly monitor the inventory, keep track of the money, and work with George on developing new products. Business was definitely booming.
Before he even sat down, Ron had the television remote control in his hand. Even after Harry explained it to him a dozen times, Ron still didn't understand TV, but that didn't mean that he didn't enjoy it. He flipped through the stations until he got to his favorite show, an old western. Settling in against the back of the couch, his stomach made a loud, unhappy noise.
"Bloody hell," Ron mumbled.
He stood up and headed to the kitchen. Opening the refrigerator door, he was glad to see that his mum had come through and had sent a bowl of soup over. He reminded himself to thank her for it later. He knew that he was probably getting too old for his mother to still be cooking him dinner, but he couldn't resist her homemade meals. After all, he did fend for himself at least two or three nights a week. Granted, that usually meant pizza or Chinese takeout, but at least he wasn't completely useless.
He grabbed the bowl from the refrigerator and heated up the soup with a zap of his wand. The smell made his mouth water. Turnip and parsley was his favorite.
Ron headed back to the couch. He sat down again when he remembered that he had forgotten a spoon.
"Accio spoon," he said, pointing his wand in the direction of the kitchen.
A silver soup spoon flew towards him. Ron caught it in midair and began to eat the soup hungrily.
"You really are lazy," Harry commented as he walked into their shared living room. They had moved into the flat together soon after the death of Lord Voldermort, two and a half years earlier. It seemed like the logical thing to do. And they both enjoyed it. They were still close, but appreciated the fact that they no longer had to share a room.
Harry sat down beside Ron.
"What's the use of being able to do magic if you don't use it?" Ron asked with his mouth full.
"Next time, get yourself a napkin," Harry said as soup dribbled down Ron's chin. Ron wiped it away with the back of his hand.
"Did you want something, Harry, or did you just come in here to tell me how to eat?" Harry used his wand to turn off the television. "Hey! I was watching that!"
"Yeah, well, this is important." Ron waited, but Harry said nothing.
"Remember when I told you….actually, asked you a few months back about Ginny."
Ron crinkled his brow and shoved more soup into his mouth. "What about Ginny?"
"You know, when I asked you if it would be alright if I…" Ron had a blank expression on his face. It had taken Harry a lot of courage to ask Ron if he could marry his baby sister, but he felt that it was the right thing to do seeing they were best mates. By the look on Ron's face, he apparently had no memory of the entire event. "I asked Ginny if she would marry my and she said yes," Harry blurted out.
Ron's eyes grew wide. "Well, good for you, mate," he said, slapping Harry on the back.
"Well, what do you expect?" Ron replied, downing the last of the soup.
"I don't know. After all, she is your sister! And I'm your best friend!"
"Come on, Harry, it's not like it's a big surprise. We all knew that it would happen eventually."
"Yeah, well, we all thought it would happen to you and Hermione, too, and look what happened," Harry mumbled under his breath.
"Well, honestly, Harry, I am happy for you. Wait, does this mean after you move out, I'm going to have to start paying all of the rent?"
"Well, you certainly aren't moving in with my and Ginny. And we're not living here."
"Why? She spends enough time here as it is."
Harry rolled his eyes.
"Anyway, I was hoping…that is, you and I have always been like brothers and seeing as how I don't have any actually brothers, I…" Harry couldn't figure out why this was so difficult. He hadn't been as nervous asking Ginny to marry him.
"Just spit it out, Harry."
"Would you…be my best man?"
"That depends," Ron replied after a few seconds of complete silence as if he was contemplating the proposition.
"On what?" Harry asked, surprised.
"What do I have to do?"
"Uh…hold the rings and plan my bachelor party?"
"Party, huh? Okay, I'll do it."
Ron smiled his usual, quirky smile.
"You're a git, you know that."
"Yeah, well, I'm your best git now."
Author's Note: Well, I was working on a completely different fic when the idea for this story came to me. I was in two weddings this summer (the maid of honor in each) so I really wanted to work on some type of wedding story. My initial thought, of course, was to write about Ron and Hermione's wedding, but I wanted something a little more angsty than that, and that's where this story came from. Anyway, thanks for reading and please review!