This is one of the shortest chapters I have written in a long time. It's just a round up of what happened to who, how many kids who had. If you're not interested in babies and weddings, don't bother.
Five years on.
Hermione sighed. This was the first time in several months they'd all managed to get together. Everyone was busy.
Harry was now the premier portrait painter of the Magical World. He painted every public personage that could afford it, and a few that could not. No one was sure how he chose his 'freebies' and he just shrugged and said he picked them because they were interesting. He would paint landscapes when he wasn't doing a portrait, these were in huge demand and commanded astronomical prices.
Draco had taken over management of the Potter-Black estates and spent hours overseeing every facet of it. He delegated as much as he could but even at that, it took an enormous amount of his time to keep everything running smoothly. He had to admit that he loved it.
She, Hermione Granger-Weasley, had wound up as a solicitor. She specialized in Non-Human rights. She was suing a large manufactory right now, one that used werewolves and house elves as labor on the old company story scam. She was suing to get the workers their proper pay, back pay and insurances. It was a long, uphill battle and she was loving every second of it. She was on the verge of winning, she was sure of that. Especially as the Malfoy factory that turned out the same goods was undercutting her opponents and using wizarding workers to do so.
Ron had become an Auror and was now deputy director. He was well known as one of the most even tempered of men, much like his father. He was also known as one of the most ruthless of hunters, he specialized in rapists and child abusers.
Severus had finally acquiesced to Lucius' nagging and changed his last name, taking his mother's maiden name as his own. Prince's Palatable Potions was doing a booming business. It turned out that muggle artificial flavorings were an inert ingredient. They had to be added after the potion was finished but that wasn't a problem. It turned out that there were very few potions that couldn't be flavored to some extent. Lucius' investment, along with Harry's, was turning out to be very lucrative.
Lucius still managed the massive Malfoy estates and investments, but he was a kinder, gentler boss; until someone screwed up. Then it was as if the Death Eater in him came out, or the Malfoy. His senior executives lived in terror of his soft, "Gentlemen, we have a problem." it never turned out well, for them. His bonuses were generous but earned.
Neville still explored the world for new plants. His green houses were now the best in the wizarding world and very much envied. Lady Augusta was still a leader of society and a force to be reckoned with. Her school was second only to Hogwarts and specialized in difficult students. She had three werewolves, six dyslexics and a deaf student, all doing quite well in their studies.
Seamus ran a pub, the dream of his life, and was doing fantastically. His food was just plain pub food, according to him, but everyone that ate at Finnigan's Wake, you did see that one coming, right? Said it was delicious. He just smiled and cleaned the bar, or polished a glass.
Dudley had somehow managed to attract the attention of the wizarding world, Harry denied any interference in this. Everyone knew that all he had to do was wear one piece of Dudley's work and everyone in the wizarding world would want jewelry from his hands. His work was distinctive, delicate yet strong.
Hermione had to chuckle a bit. Lucius had turned out to be a doting Dad, Draco claimed credit for that, saying that he'd trained him well. Severus, on the other hand, was the disciplinarian; if you could call it that. His idea of a punishment was a swat on the rear and a lecture. Not one of those thundering, sarcastic scolds that could leave a seventh year in tears either. His lectures were to the point, gentle and loving. The only person surprised by this was Severus himself.
Hermione dragged her attention back to the present with another smile.
Lucius plopped down on the blanket. "Well, the little monsters are down for a nap... finally. Remind me why we thought this was a good idea."
Harry pushed Lucius' feet out of his way and groaned, "Succession. Continuance of the family name. And all that crap. Damn. I'm exhausted and it's only one. When are the other's coming?"
Ron's voice came from somewhere over head. "About now. How's Millie feeling?"
Hermione rubbed her own swollen abdomen and replied, "She's good. Due any second now."
Draco poked Ron from his own perch in the huge old oak. "And this one is twins or I miss my guess." Everyone groaned at that as Draco had turned out to be very good at his predictions. He could actually tell what sex, hair color, eye color and general personality by the eighth month.
Augusta Longbottom and Neville popped in with a basket of goodies provided by their cooking class. That was one thing Augusta insisted on, all her students had to take a class she called General Housekeeping. It taught cooking from scratch, shopping for foods and household needs and cleaning and housekeeping charms and hexes. And, yes, some housekeeping spells were hexes, how else could you get rid of doxies and roaches without using poisons, which she abhorred.
Neville put the basket down with a grin. He was dating Crystal Clearwater now and it was getting serious. "I proposed to Crystal." He flopped down on the blanket across Harry's legs. "She said yes."
Everyone congratulated him happily, Hermione nearly broke his neck with a hug. Augusta looked on with approval. She had finally given up on some of her ideas of proper behavior as she realized that they were behind the times, and they were alienating her grandson from her. Now, she taught proper behavior in a class but only insisted on strict adherence at balls and other higher-class functions.
Harry groaned, commanded without heat, "Gerroff, you great lump." and pushed Neville off his legs. "When's the date?"
"Haven't set one yet. I thought I'd leave that up to Crystal and Gran. Those two and Molly will put their heads together and plan the whole thing. Then, all I have to do is turn up. Oh, and pay for it." Neville yelped when his Gran swatted him on the head with her fan. "What? I'm going to interfere in your fun? I've not lost my mind yet."
Augusta snorted. "You're just lazy. You will have input, if only to keep Crystal and Molly from running wild." Just then a sharp crack announced another person's arrival.
It turned out to be Dudley, arriving via portkey. "Hello, all. What's with the silly grin?" He took a chair offered to him by a house elf. "Thank you."
Neville told him about proposing to Crystal and asked if he would make the engagement and wedding rings for him.
Dudley swelled with pride and promptly agreed saying, "Sure, I will, but doesn't Crystal have an engagement ring already? I mean, isn't it proper to have the ring when you propose?"
Neville shook his head. "Not necessarily. I gave her a first promise ring, as is traditional in our family. As soon as Gran approved the match, I showed her the family rings. There's a whole tray of them in Gringotts but neither one of us like any of them. They're all old fashioned, clunky or the wrong sort of stone. So, I picked out several rings and Gran said that she'd allow us to rework a couple of them into new rings. I'll send you the stuff tomorrow. If that's alright?"
Dudley nodded. "Sure. I'll take a look, but I'm not promising to rework a second class stone."
Neville just nodded and offered him a slice of cake.
However, he didn't get it, Millicent snatched it out of his hand and settled in a chair placed next to his. "Thank you, Dudley." She was huge and Draco's prediction of twins seemed set in stone, so to say.
Dudley nodded, "Welcome." He gave Millie a genuine smile and remarked mildly, "Glad to see that you gave off wearing that damn veil. Gave me a start every time I saw it."
Millie growled around a bite of cake. "That's because everyone stared so. Annoying." She handed her empty plate off to Harry. "Hermione, when are you due?"
Hermione sighed, "About the same time you are. I can't wait. Although, I will say, I'm glad we waited this long to start."
Dudley looked from one to the other. "Ok, Muggle here. Explanations please?"
Lucius made room for Severus, who had had a business meeting and was just now arriving. He settled in a chair and kicked off his boots. He banished them with a flick of his wand, snarling, "I will never buy another pair of boots from that shop again. Those monstrosities were so ill fitting ... well, too bad I'm a family man now, otherwise, I'd hex the salesman into next week. Now, Dudley, what was your question?" Severus loved explaining things to Dudley for some reason. They repeated the question. "I see. Well, most wizards and witches don't start having children until they are in their late twenties. But, between Grindelwald and Voldemort, the younger members of our society are being encouraged to start early and have more than two children. There are family names that have died out, but there is still an Heir of the Blood available. Like Harry and Draco. Between them they bear the blood of the Malfoy, Black, Potter, Evans and LeStrange families. Draco needs an heir as do the rest of the families so they need a child for each blood line."
Lucius nodded sadly. "Yes, between one thing and another, the population of Wizarding Britain is half what it used to be. My grandfather's class at Hogwarts was over three hundred. This year's class is less than two, and it includes about fifty children from American, New Zealand and Australia. The Ministry has finally understood that the Pureblood habit of having only one or two children is very bad. Inheritance taxes have been halved for any family having more than two children, to encourage them to split their fortune among the children."
Harry snorted. "Yes, and that's going over well at Gringotts. It's going to be years and years before Britain is back to anything near normal. But ... the new minister is from a huge family, even by muggle standards."
Draco nodded, "And who the hell would have thought that Percy Weasley would make such a good minister? I mean, really."
Ron just said, "Oi! He's a prat but he's family." then dropped out of the tree to fill a plate for himself and another for Hermione. "Here, eat, you're going to need all your strength soon."
A sudden out cry from the direction of the house attracted all their attention. The children were up from their naps.
The eldest were now three. Lucius and Severus had found two surrogate mothers outside of Hermione's research. They were both widows of Death Eaters who were hard up. Lucius had had them checked out every which way and decided that they were trust worthy. Both of them had had twins. Harry and Draco had used Millicent and Twinkle; Millicent had twins, while Twinkle had triplets. Both ladies were pregnant again.
Lucius and Severus had decided to stop at four. Severus had said, "An heir and a spare for each house." They were all disappointed to find that the surrogate mothers were quite happy to turn the rearing of those children over to the father. They had taken their money and set up housekeeping, content with a monthly visit from their children and their fathers.
Millie and Twinkle had taken them into their hearts and mothered them, along with their five.
Now, all nine children descended on the family with squeals of, "Unka Duddy! Daddy! Papa! Auntie Herme!" hugs and sloppy, childish kisses were dispensed to all then they turned to the food.
One thing that the whole family insisted on from the first was that the children would learn manners. And they were mannerly, for the most part, but no one could expect an excited three year old to remember such things as napkins and silverware.
Lily and Violet headed straight for the cucumber finger sandwiches, they were both fond of vegetables but wouldn't eat any meat but chicken. Sirius, James and Brian hated anything green and refused to touch it, they loved sweets so they were hovering around Ron, clamoring for fairy cakes.
Ethan, Michael, Abraxus and Sagittarius waited with all the patience a three year old was capable of while Severus and Lucius filled plates for them. They had been brought up with the old fashioned idea that they ate what was on their plates. Both Severus and Lucius were careful, however, not to push the youngsters too far. They had a careful balance of sweets and 'real' food to chose from.
It didn't take long for the children to get settled.
It also didn't take long for chaos to reign again. This was caused by the necessity of greeting the new arrivals.
'Aunts' Minerva McGonagall, Pomona Sprout and Poppy Pomfrey and 'Uncles' Fillius Flitwick and Rubeus Hagrid. After a round of hugs, kisses and petting, they settled down again, mostly on top of Hagrid.
Minerva sighed, "I swear, they get bigger by the second. And, did you know? They've already acquired a nick name.
Lucius just raised and eyebrow. "And what, pray tell, might it be?"
Pomona just snickered. "Oh, dear. I do realize that they're not all ... er ... some are Potter's after all, but ..."
Poppy snorted into her tea then demanded, "Oh, give over, do, Pomona." She turned to the group and announced, "The general populace, after that last visit to Diagon Alley, are calling them the Malfoy Monsters." Then she dissolved into laughter.
Lucius grimaced. The last visit to Diagon Alley had ended with Sagittarius, Abraxus and Sirius making a decided effort to get into Knockturn Alley. While Severus, Harry and Draco had been thwarting that, the rest of the children had split up, invading Ollivander's, demanding their wands now and the rest had released every creature who's cage they could reach from the Magical Menagerie store.
Lucius had put his foot down, refusing to take more than two of the children to Diagon Alley unless accompanied by Millicent, Twinkle and an elf per child, at a minimum. Hermione had laughed herself silly while Ron had volunteered a battalion of Aurors for their first Hogwarts shopping trip. Never mind that it was still several years away.
Severus had announced that he was never going to Diagon Alley with more than one child again. And he meant to make it stick, too.
Neville just stayed out of the conversation with a grin, Augusta had just demanded to know what they expected with the parents the children had. She avoided commenting on Lucius' own adventures in Diagon Alley at that age, shuddering in remembrance.
Harry lounged on the blanket, listening to the happy chatter around him. He felt so happy. Everything about his life was now wonderful. He chuckled softly, causing Draco, who was leaning against him to look at him.
"What is it?"
Harry just hugged his husband and replied, "Who would ever have thought that a scared, runaway wizard would have come out so well?"
Draco and Harry's:
Twin Girls. Lily and Violet
Triplet boys. Sirius Allan, James Tobias, and Brian Alexander
Severus and Lucius':
Twin boys, Severus' heirs: Ethan and Michael
Twin boys, Lucius' blood line: Abraxus and Sagittarius.