I'm sitting on our single-seater couch, staring into the flames of the warm fireplace. The clock reads 6:15, and I still have a bit of time before the weekly dinner at the Burrow starts.
It's funny, isn't it? I never believed I'd be sitting on a couch, in a small cottage in Godric's Hollow which I happen to share with a husband, getting ready to go to a weekly family dinner at my in-laws home. Of course, I could hardly call them in-laws. They're practically like real blood-related extended family now. Not just the type of family that you send Christmas cards too, but the type of family you confide in about everything.
Besides, I know them all so well; too well, maybe. Even though there's a ridiculous amount of brothers, and one sister, and a mess of sister-in-laws, and one brother-in-law who happens to be one of my best mates, and a pair of parents, a godson, and a few nieces and nephews. Mind you, we haven't all started having children yet, but it's definitely on that to-do list.
Oh my. Children. I never thought I'd marry Ronald Weasley, much less have a bunch of red-haired kids run around. Then again, it seems like all of the unlikely things happen, at least in my life. But I wouldn't trade Ron for the world. Not even for the best library. Not even for the husband I dreamed about back when I was younger, before Hogwarts, who wore ironed slacks and always had glasses perched on the bridge of his nose. The husband who would wear sweater vests and discuss literature and have intellectual conversations. Merlin, what was I thinking? I think I was looking for someone exactly like me, but even I don't fit that bizarre description.
Ron is completely different. He never wears ironed slacks. I don't even think he uses the word 'slacks'. And Ron doesn't need glasses, either. If he did, they wouldn't be perched on the bridge of his nose. I think he'd be constantly pushing them up, silently cursing his eyes for failing him. Ron doesn't wear sweater vests, either. He wears T-shirts that are so old that they practically have his scent sunken in, sitting between each stitch. The only literature Ron discusses is probably from Flying with the Cannons, or some other Quidditch book. That's hardly literature, but I have to give Ron some credit for picking up a book. And don't even get me started on the intellectual conversations.
But that's exactly why I love him. It's because he surprises me with tea on Saturday mornings. It's because he's always content with our relationship, even when I'm lying on the couch reading a big book, and he isn't complaining because I'm not snogging him. It's because he brushes stray curls out of my face with a tenderness that I can't even began to describe. It's because he has this childhood innocence that will sometimes make him a bit naïve. It's because he can eat like a hippogriff. It's because he constantly amuses me with his antics, most which I pass off as annoying and childish when I secretly adore them. It's because he knows I secretly like his antics, and still proceeds with them without pursuing the matter further. It's because he can read me like an open book. It's because he tells me that I am his book to read whenever I complain about his lack of reading. And it is most certainly because he doesn't wear ironed slacks, or glasses, or sweater vests, nor does he discuss literature and have intellectual conversations.
One of the best things about Ron is all the things that come with him. I'm talking about his family; I gradually grew closer with them because of him. I remember in third year when Ron wasn't speaking to me because of the whole Crookshanks Scabbers incident, and I became friends with Ginny. Her and I weren't alike either, considering she was a Quidditch expert and I could hardly mount a broom, but I loved talking to her, and it always made me feel better when she called her brother a 'stupid prat' and told me he would come around, and he did, eventually.
That's one thing about Ron that I love: he never leaves me behind. Even when we have a really bad row and I am seething, just the sight of him muttering 'Sorry' is enough for me to forgive him. Ginny is such a good friend, too. I don't give her enough credit. I'm sure that she and Harry got pretty annoyed with Ron and me. I mean, the two of us talked about each other for seven years, and while everyone knew that we fancied each other, we didn't. And when we finally did realize, we doubted that the other liked each other, and Ginny and Harry were forced to listen to our whining and moaning and complaining, and they still stuck around. Not much to be thankful for, I guess, but you should've seen and heard the way I talked about Ron. And not even in that lovesick sort of way, but just in a frustrated tone where I wished he wasn't as thick as he is so he could see that I liked him. Hell, loved him.
And now we're married. Now I'm Mrs. Weasley. God, I can't get enough of saying that. I catch the small, modest diamond winking back at me on my ring finger, and my heart just flutters again. I sometimes wonder what I did to deserve this. Was I a lucky number in a humongous lottery machine? But honestly, fighting Voldemort, and helping destroy him, and making differences in the world just can't compare to finding true love. Yes, Hermione Granger, bookworm extraordinaire chooses true love over facts and statistics. I don't want to jinx anything, but I feel like Ron and I are made for each other. For some reason, that's really common in his family.
Take Molly and Arthur. They've had a lot of hardships, but to this day, after practically 30 years, Arthur still looks at Molly in a way that makes her face soften. I've seen it too- I reckon everyone has. And they definitely snog, too.
I remember once, we Flooed to the Burrow after finally buying our cottage, to tell Ron's parents. It was really nice and perfect for us, and we were both so giddy at the thought of being an engaged couple and having a cottage. It was in Godric's Hollow (still is, considering we live in it), and it was suitable for both of us. Ron was always a country type of guy, having grown up in Ottery St. Catchpole his whole life, and even though I liked the city, I still found Godric's Hollow appealing. It had a few shops, some magic and some Muggle, but for the most part it was kind of secluded.
Anyway, we had Flooed from the cottage, our cottage, into the Burrow's living room, only to find Molly and Arthur flat out snogging in the kitchen. Her back was on the wall, and Arthur was sort of leaning into her, and I could see a giant cooking spoon right next to their feet, as if Molly was making soup or something and Arthur just dropped by and practically ambushed her. I found the whole thing romantic, but Ron was appalled. When Molly sighted us, she had to gently shove Arthur away. At first he was a little perplexed, but when he saw Ron and me, he had this amused expression on his face. He just said, "Hi, Ron, Hermione" as if it was any other day. I gave a kind of embarrassed wave, but Ron was still sputtering. Molly looked red in the face, but she couldn't move because Arthur still kind of had her pinned to the wall. There was a long awkward silence, until Arthur broke it by saying gently, "It's nothing you and Hermione don't do." This just made Ron even more speechless, who still hadn't managed to say a word of the English language. Finally, finally, he said "Bloody hell!", and I didn't even bother scolding Ron for swearing. Molly, on the other hand, just threw her hands up in the air in exasperation. "Oh, for heaven sakes Ron, your father and I did have seven kids!" I decide this is the perfect time to bring up our cottage, which is a good move. The snog isn't mentioned again, that day at least, but I still love teasing Ron about it.
Staring wistfully into the crackling embers situated restlessly in the hearth, I can't help but think that I love practically everything about Ron. To be a part of him and to share a life with him just makes it so surreal. Though I never really was an avid fan of fairytales, my insides always collapse when I see him and something inside of me tells me to proclaim my love for him on top of the Himalayas. Even when I see a young teenage girl, with all traces of pining for a boy evident on her face, I just want to shake her shoulders and tell her to chase that daft git because it's all so incredibly worth it.
Before I can get too sappy, the Apparition Detector sitting on top of the clock vibrates violently. Ron is almost as paranoid as Harry is about rogue Death Eaters, and even after a good few years, he still insists that we keep the necessary precautions. Before I know it, a key in the lock is turning and the door swings open with a loud creak.
I suppress a smile as Ron walks in. He grunts slightly as he heaves off his heavy, traveling cloak and hangs it carelessly on one of the charmed hooks next to the front door. He removes his shoes- without using his hands or untying his shoelaces, of course, and slides them to a corner where my own Oxford's are lined neatly. Looking up to find my own eyes glassy and contemplating his actions in a transfixed manner, he grins widely. In long strides, he walks towards my rising figure and his socks make a padding noise on the floor.
I release a contented sigh and meet him halfway, looking into his deep, oceanic eyes before he bends his head to give me a kiss. It's soft and sweet and gentle- but at the same time it's evident that a type of burning passion is lingering in the background as his lips caress mine. I can feel him grin against my mouth as his hands tangle themselves in my already messy hair. I clutch his body possessively towards mine, wanting to remember every single reason as to why I love him.
Reluctantly removing myself from his grasp after a few glorious minutes, I lead him back to a larger couch where we sit together. He slings an arm around my shoulder, pulling me close to his chest where a faint scent of parchment lingers. I inhale deeply, entranced by how such a common fragrance can make my head spin, especially when it's being emitted by him.
"How was work today?" I murmur softly against his chest, breaking the comfortable silence.
He unwraps his arms from my body gently, before turning his own towards me. His eyes meet mine and they interlock, before he spews a full fledged explanation of the day's events.
"It was absolute hell," He says without preamble. "Don't get me wrong, Hermione- I love being an Auror. It's just all the bloody paperwork that drives me mental!"
"Don't swear," I scold, although my own eyes are twinkling with glee. Ron's accounts about a day in the Auror Department always manage to somehow amuse me. "Why was there so much paperwork?"
He rolls his eyes at my reprimand before continuing. "There were two false alarms this morning. Some git decided to tip us off about Muggle-baiting in a small village near Oxford. We got there with wands at the ready and what not, only to find no Muggle-baiting whatsoever! Then, we had to return back to the Ministry. Something similar happened later in the day, too. Unfortunately for us, we have to fill out paperwork even when things like these happen; every last detail." He snorts. "I'm surprised we aren't required to give a thorough description of what those tossers are wearing when they play the role of the big, bad Dark Wizard."
"Don't say that word," I reprimand once again. If anything is colorful about Ron, it's definitely his vocabulary.
"What word?" He asks innocently, his blue eyes sparkling against the aura of the fireplace. "Oxford? Honestly, Hermione. What's so bad about that particular word? You do have a pair of those prissy shoes by the same name, now don't you?"
I huff indignantly. "They are not prissy shoes, Ronald. They happen to be sensible, casual, and appropriate for work. And no, I was not talking about that word."
"Oh! You meant wands, didn't you?" He gives me a mischievous grin. "Now Hermione, I know that some kids enjoy using this word in vulgar jokes..."
"I am not referring to that word either," I interject coldly, though my insides are giddy at the thought of having one of our exhilarating rows. "You know very well what I am talking about."
For a moment, he stares at me, feigning cluelessness. Then, he exaggeratedly claps his palm over his forehead. "Oh!" He exclaims, sounding as if he has just solved the world's most difficult Arithmancy problem. "You mean tosser?"
"Yes," I say through gritted teeth. "That word. It happens to be very crude."
"And it's the perfect way to describe those arses," He counters smoothly.
As I continue to glare at him, I can see that he is silently laughing and trying very hard to compose himself. I attempt to maintain my mask of indifference, though as I look clearly into his red, creased face, I cannot help myself. The corners of my lips twitch upward and before I can control myself, I am smiling widely. The two of us relieve ourselves and burst into a fit of giggles which soon turn into loud guffaws.
A last, strangled laugh escapes from his throat and he sighs deeply. Lounging against the couch in a very comfortable manner, he spreads both of his arms out behind him, closing his eyes and leaning his head back.
I use the opportunity to stare at him again, practically bewitched by the curtain of red fringe that hides his eyebrows, the lazy smile playing on his lips. His nostrils flare slightly as he takes a deep breath and his long, slender nose looks positively milky in the firelight.
I think I am falling in love again.
I hear a strange, gurgling noise coming from his stomach and knowingly grin. Ron is always hungry, even after dinner at the Burrow. It always explains why I find our ice cream carton half full the next morning.
"Are you hungry?" I ask, knowing the answer all too well.
He lifts open his eyelids and grins at me. "Do you even have to ask?" He says, his voice laced with teasing.
I roll my eyes at him before getting up and walking into the kitchen. A plate charmed to keep warm is sitting on the countertop, covered with individual servings of brioche. Placing two pieces of the buttery, French bread on a saucer and grabbing a serviette, I glide out of the kitchen and hand Ron the small plate.
He smiles gratefully at me, before devouring at his snack at an alarming rate, not even bothering to use the serviette. To show his appreciation, he begins to make loud, embellished noises as he munches on the bread.
"Mmmm!" He practically croons, smiling at me at the same time. "Gods, this is good. When did you find time to bake them?"
I shrug nonchalantly, toying with the edge of my shirt. On the inside, though, I am absolutely pleased; Ron actually likes my cooking.
"I left the Ministry early today," I explain. "I already finished researching about Werewolves for the new law I'm trying to pass, and I'm about two weeks ahead of schedule for the rest of the things I have to do."
He smirks at me for a moment, leaving me confused as to why he's mocking me in such a way.
"What?" I ask indignantly.
He chortles a bit. "Leave it to you," He says, "to be about two weeks ahead of schedule." He snickers again. "Tell you what, Hermione. Why don't you be a big helper to your most favorite prat in the world and drop by the Auror Department tomorrow? Merlin knows I should get that paperwork finished."
"Ronald," I admonish, using his full name. "You are the Auror and therefore, it is the Auror's responsibility to fill out the necessary paperwork."
Ron contemplates this for a moment, as if searching for a loophole. "You're right," He finally says. "I'll just copy off Harry's then."
"You will do no such thing!" I say, inwardly cursing my lips for smiling against my own will. See what I mean about how amusing his antics are?
"I'm kidding, Hermione," He says quickly. Still, I'm pretty sure I hear "Or am I?" under his breath, though I choose not to acknowledge it.
He polishes off another piece of brioche and I carefully bat away any stray crumbs on his shirt. Ron takes my hand in his own away from the front of his shirt and brings it to his lips, sliding them across my palm gently. Slowly, he pulls my body towards his and we lapse into another few minutes of pure, unadulterated love.
After what seems like eternities, I slowly pull away from him. I feel completely carefree and even a little drunk, but that's just the effect Ron has on me. Before we can get too carried away, I glance at the clock once again. It reads 6:35 and I fully remember the weekly dinner at the Burrow we're supposed to attend in less than half an hour.
Turning my head back to face Ron, I find him in the same, reclining position he was in minutes ago. Sighing a bit, I crane my neck to whisper into his ear.
"Wake up," I murmur, blowing gently into his ear.
"Already awake," He murmurs back.
"We need to go to the Burrow soon, Ron."
"For dinner, remember?" Honestly, how could he not? The thought of going to my first one as Ron's wife was making me spew with excitement the entire day.
"Not hungry." At that very moment, his stomach grumbles again and I chuckle softly.
"I beg to differ."
He snorts. "You beg to differ with everything I say."
"Can you blame me? The absurdities that you manage to say alarm me to no end."
"Well, I might as well just stop speaking, then."
"That would be nice. One million less curse words I'd have to hear, at least."
"But if I stop speaking, who's going to say 'I love you' to you every single day?"
I contemplate this for a moment. He actually has a point. Instead of answering him with a response, though, I choose to smoothly change the subject. I know once we get started on a type of argument like this, we won't stop any time soon.
"Ron," I say, authority in my voice. "Please get up."
"You didn't answer my question."
I sigh heavily, before decided to tackle this with an entirely different approach. Slyly, I snake my hand over to his front pocket, removing his wand and hiding it behind my back. "Don't make me use Levicorpus."
His eyes snap open immediately. He turns to look at me and signs of disbelief are etched all over his face. "You wouldn't." As if to prove his point, he dumbly begins to reach for his own wand.
I grin at him and dangle his wand high above his head. "Go change, love. I've left your clothes on the bed."
Ron sighs in defeat before getting up. He bends down and kisses my forehead before trudging down the hall to change his clothes. I smile at his retreating figure as I smooth out my own outfit and walk towards the hearth. I toss a handful of Floo Powder into the crackling flames, which abruptly turn from a torrent of reds and oranges to a lively green.
Ron walks out of our bedroom and to the fireplace a few moments later, wearing an ironed, cobalt blue dress shirt that brings out his eyes nicely. He's also put on a pair of black trousers that fit him well, and I cheekily hand him his wand back before grabbing his hand and dragging him along eagerly with me into the hearth.
He laughs at how enthusiastic I am to get there. "Ready, love?"
I vigorously nod and wait for him, anticipation filling me up rather quickly.
"The Burrow!" He exclaims, clearly and calmly.
The green flames began to dance animatedly and engulf us too quickly for my liking. We whirl around in a brisk, steady moment and our living room leaves our view altogether. I close my eyes for a brief moment, only to open them again shortly and find an alarming number of people bustling around the room, some waiting for the two of us and expressions filled with alacrity.
Ron and I step out of the fireplace, hand in hand. We beam at the becoming crowd in front of us and my insides turn and twist with delight.
As we began to greet everyone wholeheartedly and participate in the contagious mirth, I can't help but think that being Mrs. Ron Weasley definitely has its perks.
A/N: Just a little One Shot I've had in my head (and on my computer) for ages.
Review and you get a special edition of Hogwarts: A History. And a Chudley Cannons hat. And some Chocolate Frogs. :)
By the way, the title, 'Reptilian Complex' , refers to the part of the brain that handles basic emotions. In this case, that particular emotion is love. Just a nerdy little tidbit for you. :D