All characters belong to JKR

Part XL:

Secrets:

The wiles of spring were in full bloom. Usually this was one of Hermione's favourite times at Hogwarts, because springtime brought renewal, promise, and hope for the future. All dying things were reborn. It was the end of school, but the beginning of summer. It was a time when all good things could mask bad things. Hermione wished she could find her usual joy and promise in spring, but all she found, as she walked the grounds of the school alone, was fear and loathing. She was anxious, and filled with dread.

In two days time Draco and Don would leave her, and the day after, she would fight Helena alone. Everything was still so uncertain. Would she succeed, or fail? She hardly knew.

She was waiting for Draco. They were going to have a quiet lunch, by themselves, before he went back to the future. She was anticipating this lunch almost as much as she usually anticipated spring. She wanted one last piece of normalcy with her husband, just in case her future changed irreparably.

She walked closer to the lake, her robe over her arm, when she heard someone calling her name. She turned, and across lake she saw who was calling her. It was Carina.

NO! Why had she returned? Was something wrong with their plan? Had things already been altered in the distant future, and Carina came back once more to warn them? Carina stood on one side of the lake, and Hermione on the other. She yelled across, "What are you doing here?" However, her daughter couldn't hear her. She shook her head. She motioned for Hermione to join her on the other side.

Carina called her name again. She knew what she had to do. She had to go to her daughter, but she also had to leave a message for Draco. She took off her school tie, and tied it around a low, lying branch. Draco would see it and know that she was there.

It was the only thing she could think to do. She couldn't risk sending him her patronus, on the chance that someone else might see, and she couldn't leave him a note, for the same reason.

She laid her robe on the ground. She reached inside the pocket, and for some reason, took out the Slytherin/Hufflepuff locket. She slipped it around her neck, and over her blouse. Paul had already given the other one to his mother.

She wasn't sure why she put it on, but it felt as if it was the right thing to do.

She ran around to the other side of the lake, running through knee-high reeds and brambles. She was closer to Carina now, but her daughter turned and said, "Hurry, Mother. Hurry!"

Hermione called after her. "Why are you back? What happened? Where are we going?" She never answered.

Hermione felt slightly afraid, because the thought that this might not be her daughter flashed in her mind. Then she reasoned that Helena would not know what her grown daughter looked like, so she followed Carina, all the way into the forbidden forest. Soon, she saw Carina enter the Ravenclaw cave. She felt it was safe to follow her there, since Don put up wards to protect it from Helena. She also knew that Paul was still hiding there. Perhaps he was in trouble.

She answered the riddle, and walked inside, past the bush which guarded the entrance. She walked through the narrow passageways, her wand out before her, lit to illuminate her way. She called out again, "Carina? Are you there?"

She entered the now familiar smaller chamber, and she peered down to the larger chamber below. She felt fear. The hairs on the back of her neck and arms stood up. She remembered what happened in this cave during her eighth year at Hogwarts, which naturally brought the memories of what happened with Helena in the Slytherin cave to the forefront of her mind. Her intuition told her this was a mistake. She should not have come here.

"Come on down, Hermione. I know you're here," a familiar voice said. Hermione shut her eyes, and placed her hand over her heart, and the locket. She was such a fool to follow a phantom daughter. She should have known better.

She looked around the opening, and saw a beautiful woman, with raven black hair, long blue robes, and on her chest the Ravenclaw/Gryffindor locket.

"Helena," Hermione said.

"Won't you join me, my dear? I've waited so long to see you," Helena said, acting the perfect hostess. Hermione saw Paul Boot in the corner, beaten and bound. Helena said, "You know my son, I take it. He's been quite bad. He's betrayed me, or at least, he tried. First he came to me earlier this year, pleading for help. Help me mother, he said. Help me win the heart of my one true love. But then, he tried to trick me. What is a mother to do? I found out he's not even my son from this time, but from the future. Do you know what else I found out, dear?"

"I haven't a clue," Hermione answered steadily.

"You're from the future, also. I found the spell that you and Paul used to come back. It's a curious little spell, from Ravenclaw's ancient text, written by none other than her. It sends a person back in time, where they may inhabit their own body, as you and Paul have done, or appear as their future self, as you daughter did, when she came back."

"Fascinating," Hermione retorted. Hermione began to breathe harder, as she grasped her wand tightly in her hand. She took several steps toward the woman, which meant she was now deeply inside the main chamber of the cave. It should be dark in the cave, but it was as light as day. Hermione said, "How did you replicate my daughter's image?"

"I saw what she looked like, in the mind of my son," Helena said lightly. "It was easy to manipulate you into following her." The woman stood in front of Paul and added, "I've seen all sorts of things in his weak mind. He came to me, not once telling me he was from the future, and he wanted my help in securing the love of his life. I was happy to oblige, but at a price."

Helena looked down at Paul, and then back to Hermione. "He tried to keep things from me, but I'm a gifted seer. I've been seeing things that didn't make sense for years. Things about a Muggle-born being the heir of Slytherin and Hufflepuff, when all along I thought I was that heir. I saw you, Miss Granger, but I didn't know until I looked into my son's mind that you would someday be the death of me, and my son Terry."

She looked evil personified when she said, "I never really loved any of my sons, though I did have a soft spot for the youngest, but I loved the daughter I had to give away. I had to give her away, to marry my sons' father. I had to marry him, because he was the last known heir to Ravenclaw and Gryffindor, and I thought I was the last heir to Slytherin and Hufflepuff. I thought we would join, and I would have another daughter, and she would fulfill the prophecy handed down by Ravenclaw herself, that a daughter of all four heirs would be the strongest witch of our time."

"Then, I saw in his mind the truth. A truth I was fearful of for a long time. I wasn't that heir. I was the descendent of Ravenclaw and some dark wizard called Darian." The woman was practically seething by now. "You are the heir, and your child's future child is the key to my prophecy, not my children."

"Your daughter will someday marry the son of Nick Boot. The thing no one knows is that when I killed Don Boot's mother, so that I might marry his father, I pretended to be with child, his child. I tricked him into sleeping with me while he was still married to his first wife. I had to assure that he would marry me right away, after the loss of his precious wife, so I told him I was carrying his child. The actuality was that his wife was with child. That child was Nick. I kept her alive, but hidden, long enough until she delivered, and then I pretended the child was my own."

"Do you see how important that is?" Helena asked.

Hermione did not.

"Don Boot always assumed he was the last heir of Gryffindor and Ravenclaw, Gryffindor from his mother's side, and Ravenclaw from his father, but Nick's real mother is one and the same as Don's mother. Therefore, his son is from Gryffindor and Ravenclaw, your child is from Hufflepuff and Slytherin, and their child someday will be the one from my prophecy. I have to stop that."

"As soon as I realized all of this, I decided right then that your child must die. That was what I intended. I went to your time, using the same spell you and Carina and Paul, and now Nick, used to come back in time, only I went forward in time. However, to go forward, one can only exist as a disembodied spirit, that is, if they're dead in the future, as I am. I went to my daughter in the future, to enlist her help, only to find that Paul had put her into a deep sleep. I had no recourse, so I summoned the power of nature and animals to help me kill you and your child, but nothing worked. You were too well protected."

"Would you like to know another curious thing about this little spell?"

"If you feel the need to enlighten me, you should," Hermione said back.

"Even if I kill you now, it won't change what has already happened in the future. You will still kill me someday," she smiled and added, "Yes, I saw that little bit of prophecy a long time ago, and your daughter would still be born. You, however, would cease to be in your time, but that won't solve my problems, especially as your child will still be alive, and is destine to have the child from my prophecy."

"It's much like the magic of the blue moon, although, unlike the blue moon, you can change things. Ravenclaw was a smart one, wasn't she? Always thinking of all possibilities and outcomes. I'm glad I have her blood in me. I'm also glad I have Darian blood in me. That's what will save me in the end. I've decided that instead of killing you, since it won't serve any purposes, I'll let you give me the Darian wand first. That way, I will vanquish you now, and send you back to your time, much the same way you intended to vanquish me, and then I'll replace the Darian wand with a fake. In a few years time, when you go to the cave to get my wand, you will retrieve a false wand, and I will already have the real one. I think my plan will work. What do you think?"

Hermione was sure she wasn't meant to answer.

"You see, I'm just trying to secure my future. You wouldn't fault a woman for that, would you?"

It dawned on Hermione that she didn't have the Darian wand with her. It also dawned on Hermione that she might not need it, since she could kill Helena in this time, with her own wand, but killing Helena in this time WOULD change the future, and Hermione couldn't do that. She was meant to vanquish her from the future, back to the past, but here she was, already in the past. Still, Hermione wasn't meant to kill her now.

"Why so quiet, little Mudblood?" Helena said.

"I'm trying to come up with all the ways I might kill you," Hermione said coolly. "How did you get in this cave? Don put up protection spells."

"This lovely locket my son gave me grants me all sorts of liberties. It increases my magical ability, my seer gift, and allows me access to any place I want. Thank you, for having him give it to me," Helena said with a smile. Hermione wondered if the locket on her own neck gave her the same abilities.

Paul was shaking his head, as he sat on the floor. He managed to push the gag out of his mouth and he said, "Hermione, I'm sorry. Please, I'm so sorry."

Helena pointed her wand at Paul and without preamble, said, "Avada Kedarva!" He fell over dead. Hermione began to cry. "Oh, did you care for him after all dear?"

Finality:

Draco went out to the lake to meet Hermione for a picnic. It was to be their last 'hurrah' before he returned to his time. He hated that he couldn't be here with her while she battled Helena, but he had to go back to the future tomorrow, so he would be content with the way things were, and he would hope and pray that Hermione would be successful, and would come back to him. He walked up to the lake, and immediately he found Hermione's robe and tie. He was beyond worried.

He ran back to the castle to get Don. Don and the current Nick sat in Don's office. Before he could tell Don that Hermione was missing, Sanguini ran into Don's office behind Draco and said, "Oh my God! I just had a flash of a changed memory. Paul Boot! He's no longer of the future!"

Don pushed past Draco and grabbed Sanguini's arms. "What do you mean?"

"I mean, my memory changes as things are changed in the past and the future. Don, Nick, I'm so sorry, but Paul Boot is dead."

Nick broke down and began to cry. Don collapsed in his chair. Draco held up Hermione's tie and robe and said, "Helena's here. I know it. Hermione's missing."

Everyone began shouting at once. Nick walked to the center of the room and said, "QUIET!" He closed his eyes, tears still pouring down his face, and he said, "I feel her. She's at Hogwarts. I don't know how she was allowed to take Hermione on the grounds, because the magic of Slytherin, which prohibited any Darian heir to hurt any of his heirs, should have kept her from Hermione, but she has her. They're in the Ravenclaw cave." He opened his eyes. "That's where mother killed Paul. She also has Terry there. We have to hurry."

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Hermione said, "I wonder something, Helena."

"What is that dear?" she asked.

"Even with the Darian wand, which by the way, I don't have on me at the moment, I wonder, how you will change things? Even if you, as you called it, vanquish me from this time, and send me back to my time, the future me will still try to kill you someday. Nick's seer ability was always greater than your own, and he will see things differently, which means we will find another way to kill you. There's also the problem of a Vampire named Sanguini. He has a perpetual memory. He's traveled back, too, but he has a constant knowledge of the future, the past, the present, and everything that changes."

"He has probably already seen that Paul Boot no longer exists in the future. He has probably already told Don and the others. You're still going to die. I pity you, I think, because you really didn't think this out, after all."

Helena looked angry.

"Furthermore, you can't kill me here. That locket might have allowed you access to this cave, but this cave is still on Hogwarts grounds. You couldn't even get me to come here, without tricks. I had to come of my own freewill. Slytherin's magic against all Darians and their heirs still protects me. You can only kill me with the Darian wand, and it's in an old abandoned house, in Hogsmeade."

"Your future house?" Helena asked, anxiously.

"Yes," Hermione said. She had to get that woman to that house. The wand wasn't there, but there was something there that would work. She guarded her mind closely, so the woman couldn't see she was lying.

Helena closed her eyes for a moment and said, "I can't see if it's there or not. My ability is clouded. I also cannot tell if you lie, but if you do, your death will be one hundred time more painful than you can imagine. Let us go to your home dear. I hope it is set to receive visitors."

"It's ready for you," Hermione said. The woman couldn't force her to go, but she would gladly go there, if it meant all of this would end.

Hermione turned to walk out of the cave. That was when she saw Terry Boot in the other corner of the chamber. He was in a sort of trance. She walked up to him and said, "Terry?"

Helena walked behind Hermione and said, "He will be fine, as long as you aren't lying to me. He dies soon anyway, so I'll spare him for now. Let's go, little Slytherin heir, but first…" She summoned Hermione's wand to her hand. "I'll take your wand."

The men headed toward the forest, when Nick stopped. "Wait. They aren't there any longer. I feel strongly that Hermione is leading her to the house. That's good."

He looked back to the others and said, "Don, you and Sanguini go to the cave. Get Terry out, and take Paul's body out." He looked at Draco and said, "You can come with me, but I have to insist that you don't interfere, please. We've prepared the house for the final battle, and we have to let Hermione do this on her own."

Draco was so afraid for Hermione that he would agree to anything. He nodded. Nick and Draco ran toward Hogsmeade.

Hermione entered the house first, followed by Helena. Helena looked around and said, "I have only been in this house in the future, while in another dimension, but I see that you have done a lot of work on it in the future. My compliments, my dear."

Hermione felt like slapping the woman.

They walked toward the fireplace. Hermione said, "It's in the third brick above the fireplace mantel, on the left. The light coloured brick. You have to push in the brick, and reach inside."

"Then do so," Helena instructed. "I'll let you do the honours."

Helena smiled, assuming Hermione was trying to trick her. In reality, Hermione wanted to be the one to do it. It was important. Nevertheless, to be sure, she said, "You should do it, if you want the wand so badly. Surely you don't want me to touch it."

"If I remember right, from my visions, you can't wield its powers, anyway. Let's get this over. There's no use stalling."

Hermione sighed openly, and then reached over to the brick. She pushed on one side, and the brick scraped against the one on top and the one on bottom, and one side of the brick pushed inward. Hermione reached inside, and pulled out a long, black velvet, sheath.

Helena's eyes widened in anticipation. Hermione knew she had to time this right. They had planned this to work on a future Helena, so she didn't know if it would work with a corporeal entity, but Hermione had no choice. She had to be close enough to the woman, for it to work. The lockets had to make contact.

She reached inside, and pulled out what looked like a black wand. It was really a special portal, a sort of metaphysical portkey, which they had rigged to send Helena back to her time, with no memory of what had occurred. Hermione had no idea what it would do to her now, since the woman was already in her time, but she couldn't wait to find out.

She held the black wand toward the woman, who smiled an almost maniacal smile. Once Helena's hand took the other end of the wand, Hermione refused to let go of her side. They both tugged on the wand, as Hermione began chanting an incantation in Latin, and soon the sky and the floor, and the walls and the space, ceased to be, and it was as if both women were in a vortex, spinning, spinning, forever downward, into a black abyss.

The lockets on their necks met in the middle. Helen began to scream, as Hermione continued to yell above the deafening noise of the unknown.

Hermione said:

"A posteriori a priori (from the latter to the former) ab aeterno ab antique (from the eternal, from the ancient) absens haeres non erit (an absent person will not be the heir)

ad perpetuam memoriam (to the perpetual memory) ad referendum (to that which must be brought back) alterum non laedere (to not wound another) aut viam inveriam aut faciam (either I will find a way, or I will make one.)"

"Discede (depart) non memores acti prudentes future (not mindful of what has been done, aware of what will be) mors certa hora incerta (Death is certain, its hour uncertain) respice, adspice, prospice (look behind, look here, look ahead,) consummatum est (It is complete)."

Once the phrase was complete, Helena let go of the wand, she fell endlessly, continually, through the opening of the vortex, and she ceased from Hermione's sight.

Hermione fell to the floor, the black wand in her hand, and somehow, both lockets around her neck.

It was done:.

Nick and Draco stood in the hallway, and watched the entire thing. When Hermione fell to the ground, Draco rushed to her, but after a second, she too disappeared, and the only things lying on the ground were the lockets, and the portal. He turned to Nick, to ask him what was happening, but Nick disappeared, too.

Afraid and alone, Draco picked up the lockets, and ran out of the house, to find Don Boot.

Draco was afraid. What had happened? Where did Hermione go? He ran all the way to Hogwarts, and before he could reach the gates, he saw Don running from the forbidden forest.

"It worked!" Don shouted, a smile on his face.

"What worked! It didn't work! Helen disappeared, but so did Hermione! She's gone, Don!" Draco was beside himself. He threw himself toward his friend, and grabbed his shoulders.

"That means it worked, it really, really worked!" Don said, still smiling.

"What do you mean? What are you talking about?" Draco demanded.

"The spell, to send Helena back, it had to have worked, because everything has been put right! All the people who came back not using the blue moon spell went back to their times! Even Paul! I don't know if he will be alive or not when we get back, but don't you see, it worked. It was meant to send them all back, and it did!"

"It sent everyone back to their times?" Draco asked, confused.

"Yes, and if it worked right, when we go back tomorrow, they'll never know we were missing. If Paul is alive, and he presents the same plan to me, I'll be ready this time. I'll get him the help that he needs. If he's dead, then, well, it's the price he paid for betraying his role of guardian to the heirs." Don sounded resolute.

"But what happened to Hermione?" Draco asked. "If my Hermione left this time, then shouldn't the past Hermione have been left in her place?"

Don smiled, and pulled on Draco's sleeve. "I don't think you understand, Draco." He pulled him all the way into the Great Hall, and pointed toward one of the long tables. Hermione was sitting at the table, with Weasley and Potter, reading a book.

Draco looked at Don and said, "Will she remember me? I mean, will she have the memories she had before my Hermione took her place?"

"Not if it worked right. If it worked right, I'm not even a professor here. Nothing that happened between the two blue moon will even have occurred. Dumbledore gave us the spell, and he said it would make everything right in the past, the present and the future. It would make everything as it was." Don smiled and patted Draco's back. "And tomorrow, we'll go back to our time. Hang on for one more day, Draco."

"Will we remember everything that happened, when we go back? If we don't, you won't know not to trust Paul again," Draco pointed out.

"Dumbledore said we will remember. Don't worry. You get to go back, and spend the year the way you were supposed to spend it, Draco, with your wife, awaiting the arrival of your first baby."

Draco smiled. Don said, "I have to get out of here. I have a few loose ends to tie up, and Sanguini is still here, but now as his past self, although he will be able to remember all that happened. He and I will go to my ancestral home, and make sure Helena is still there, and without memory of what happened."

"What if she sees the future, and knows this will happen?" Draco asked.

"The spell should keep that from happening, so we can only hope. I'll meet you at the edge of the ground tomorrow morning, and we'll go back. Don't be late. Nine o'clock, sharp. I'll tell Blaise, well Mark, to be sure to be there, too," Don said. He smiled once more, and hugged Draco.

"Thank you," Draco said.

"No, thank you. It was the lockets that allowed the connection between Hermione and Helena, which allowed the portal to open. If it wasn't for you, we wouldn't have gotten the lockets. Be sure to put them where you told your mother they would be. Best to do it now."

Draco fingered the lockets in his pocket, and then he looked in the Great Hall once more. Hermione looked up, glared at him, and he smiled at her. She looked confused for a moment. She looked behind her, and then back at him. He threw back his head and laughed.

On the way back from Hogsmeade, after delivering the lockets, he saw her under a tree, by the lake, reading, but of course.

"Enjoying the spring day, Granger?" he asked.

She looked up at him and said, "You weren't in class today."

"Keeping tabs on me now?" he asked.

"No," she said. She didn't seem as if she knew what else to say. She went back to her book.

He walked up to her, and stood over her. His shadow fell over her legs. She looked up, held her hand over her eyes to block the sun, and said, "Was there something else, Malfoy, or shall I hex you?"

He laughed again. He felt so happy. He loved his wife, and everything was going to be okay. He would even welcome a hex from the past Hermione, but instead he bent down, and got on his knees beside her.

She looked shocked. She reached in her robe for her wand. He held up his hand and said, "I'm unarmed."

"What do you want?" she asked.

He wanted to kiss her, but he would probably be killed shortly afterwards, so since she had her wand clenched tightly in her fist, he lend over to the side, and picked up a blue wildflower. He didn't know what type it was, its genus or name, but he plucked it from the ground, twirled it in his fingers for a moment, and then to her surprise, he placed it in her hair, behind her ear.

She reached up for it, but he reached for her hand. He held her hand in his, but only for a moment, because she snatched it away. He said, "Leave it. It improves your looks, Mudblood."

He stood up still smiling, and in his mind, he said the sentence he wanted to say to her. "It doesn't compare to the beauty of you, nor does it compare to the love I feel for you." He looked back once, and she had taken it out of her hair, but to his shock, she pressed it in the pages of a book. He turned back toward the school, and ran the whole way there.

Epilogue:

Draco woke up from a deep sleep, and at first, he thought it was a dream. He was back at his home in Hogsmeade, in his own time, with the muffled sound of rain on the windowpane. He found comfort in that sound and he knew that once more, everything was safe and right in his little world.

He had come back to the exact time when he had first decided to leave. He stood up and looked outside the window. It was dark, wet, with blowing wind, thunder and lightning, but he was safe inside. He looked over to his bed, and saw the woman that he loved fast asleep, and he knew there was no longer any reason to worry.

He heard a scratching on the same window, and looked out to see a totally soaked owl. He opened the window as quietly as he could, so as not to wake his wife. He took the message off its leg, and it flew away. He unrolled the piece of parchment, and saw that it was a note from Don.

It said:


It's done. Everything is right. I told Nick everything. Oh, and Paul is alive! Nick and I went to Paul. We confronted him with his plan. He was surprised that we knew. We then had Sanguini tell him every bad thing that occurred because of his selfishness. He sat down and cried.

Our father has decided to place him under a sort of 'house arrest' where he will be watched by the Brotherhood of the Raven. He will also get some much needed help. Ellen is still in prison where she belongs. Everything is right. Kiss Hermione for me. I'll see you soon.

Love, Don


Draco Malfoy looked over at the woman he loved and the small swell in her belly. He still could not believe he was going to be able to see his child born this time. He still had all the same worries he had the first time: Would he be a good father? Would he be a better father than his own father was? Would he be able to protect his child from harm? Nevertheless, he knew that this time, he would never leave them. He actually no longer doubted his ability to keep his family safe, either, since he knew he had done it before.

He sat down on the bed and said softly, "Hermione." She opened her eyes.

"Can't you sleep?" she asked.

"It's storming outside," he said.

"Are you afraid of the thunder?" she asked with a smile.

"Yes, that's right, I'm afraid of the thunder," he said, repeating what he had said so many months ago. He placed his hand on her belly and pulled her closer to him. "How's junior?" He almost asked, "How's Carina," but he caught himself at the end. He would have to be careful not to make such foolish mistakes. He could never tell Hermione what happened this year.

"I told you not to call the baby that," she said.

"I have to call it something," he said. "It's not a zygote any longer, nor is it an embryo. It sounds too common to say 'the baby'. If he was still a fetus, I suppose I could call him Cetus the Fetus. Cetus is a name of a constellation."

"Over my dead body," she said. "You know if you'd like, I could tell you the gender, and we could go ahead and name it." Hermione had known the baby's gender since she was just 16 weeks pregnant. She was now 20 weeks pregnant.

Draco originally didn't want to know, so he made Hermione swear not to tell him, although she did anyway, but now that he knew it was a little girl, he said, "Tell me what we're having, Hermione. I'm ready to know."

"We're having a little girl," she squealed. He leaned over and hugged her tightly. She said, "I had a gender neutral name picked out, in case you didn't want to know."

Draco actually sat up in bed and repeated what he had said the first time. "Why do you get to name it? And you know I have to name it something in the Malfoy tradition. A constellation name, Hermione. My mother and father insist."

Hermione laughed, but then she saw Draco's stern countenance, she said, "Oh, you're not joking, are you?"

"What name do you have picked out for the little bugger?" Draco asked again, turning to his side and putting his hand on her arm.

"Terry. After Terry Boot. I thought Don would like that," she said.

As he thought the first time, after she told him that, it was a lovely sentiment, to want to name the baby after Terry, but he didn't want to saddle his baby with such a common name. "Hermione, with names like ours, don't you think the little baby inside you deserves something less mundane. We could use Terry for the middle name; I think that would be nice."

"Fine, Einstein, what do you want to name it," she asked, yawning.

Instead of the host of names he gave her as an option the first time they had this conversation, he said, "I like Carina. Carina Malfoy. My little girl, who I'll get to watch being born, and who will never know what it's like to grow up without a father, Carina."

"I think Carina is a perfect name. I like Hydra, too," she said.

"No Hydra. Wasn't she a mythical monster with eight arms?" he asked.

She smiled, punched her pillow, went to lie back down and said, "Carina it is, then."

He touched her arm and she opened her eyes again. "I'm so happy that we're having a girl."

Hermione smiled and said, "I'm glad, because it's too late to change it now."

"Yes, of course, and there's still plenty of time for us to have a little Cygnus or Polaris," he said.

"NO Polaris!" she said. She smiled, leaned over, kissed his lips and said, "Now, Carina and I have to get back to sleep."

Draco nodded and turned to his back. She turned to face him and he pulled her over to his chest. She rested her head on his shoulder, and placed her hand over his heart. He held her in his arms and said, "I love you both, more than anything, and I would travel through time and space to keep you both safe."

She looked up at him, leaned forward, kissed his lips soundly, and said, "That's good, because I love you both, too, and I would do the same."

They continued to listen to the rain as it beat on their roof and Draco wondered something. He said, "Hey, Granger, do you recall a time in sixth year, when I handed you a blue wildflower? What did you ever do with it?" He smiled, because he knew that she had kept it, but actually, if the blue moon did its job, she won't even have a memory of a blue flower.

"Draco, as you know, we hated each other in sixth year. You certainly never gave me a flower, and I'm sure if you had, I would have torn it to bits, spat on it, and buried it into the ground with my foot." She looked up at him again, and said, "Why did you ask me if I remembered something that never happened?"

"I just wanted to be sure," he said, his answer vague to her, but to him, he wanted to be sure that everything really did turn out right, and that they hadn't changed anything. He hugged her again and said, "Get to sleep now, little one, and littler one."

She closed her eyes, he held her all night, and though he didn't sleep, he dreamt of their future all night long.

~The End~


A/N: It's done! I started this in September, and ended it in April, so the real timeline of my story was almost parallel to how long it took to write it! I've never taken this long to write a story before! Of course, I did finish two or three (or four or five) other stories along the way, while I did this one…(A Feeling Unknown, A Second Chance, A Silent Night, A Valentine's Day Surprise, and A Date by Proxy).

Thanks to everyone who read. Thanks to my beta…olivewoodsgirl! You are so awesome! You helped me with my phrasing, you helped me from being redundant, and you helped me with my blatant use of passive voice, which I do ALL THE TIME! This is the official end to the A Familiar Place series. If I have to add another epilogue, and kill them to end it, the way I did with Draco and Hermione in the fourth story of "A Week in the Life" series, I will. Nah, just joking. THANKS!!)