Disclaimer all characters, settings, etc, are the copyright of JK Rowling and Bloomsbury Publishing
To break the curse.
It was early in the morning when Harry Potter reached the room that he had been told Hermione was in. He was tired and sweating a little. He had run all the way from the international portkey lounge at the ministry, not stopping even for the lifts as he raced through St Mungo's to get to his best friend.
As Harry entered the room Hermione's father Richard stopped him "Harry can I have a word before you see her, she's sleeping for now so we have a little time," he whispered to the young man before him.
Harry nodded and accompanied Richard out into the corridor, "How is she Mr Granger?" Harry asked fear laced in his voice and showing on his face.
"I won't lie to you Harry, they tell me she will die within the week, the curse is a really bad one," Richard Granger answered in sorrow, his little princess was dying and there seemed nothing he could do about it.
Harry stood speechless for a few minutes, trying to pull his head together, this news was just about the worst news he could ever receive. "Is there nothing that can be done, no way to save her?"
Richard Granger looked sadly at the young man in front of him, "Well one healer, named Hedley said that he only knew of one form of magical power that might be strong enough to destroy or remove the curse, and though they would not be able to use any form of contraception, in case it affected the curse, he said that it is the marriage bonding completion."
"Well that's ok then they've been engaged for two years, Ron will marry her and she'll be ok," Harry said relief flooding through him and feeling as though a huge weight had fallen from him.
"I'm afraid Healer Hedley said there might be a serious risk to who ever breaks the curse, apparently there's a good chance that if there is not enough power then the curse will simply move from Hermione onto her groom, killing him in a very short time, and as he will already be married by then there would be absolutely nothing they could do for him," Richard said quietly, too quietly for Harry.
"So when is the wedding, has Ron got a best man yet?" Harry asked somehow dreading the answer, he had hoped for years for Hermione to notice him in a romantic way, once she was married to Ron well it would be the end of his hopes.
"Ron left Harry, he said he wanted to be married at least long enough to raise a family, he did not want to get killed by getting married and forming the bond. The bastard ran out on her… again." Richard said his voice rising with anger.
Harry wondered why he was not surprised with this piece of news, the red head seemed to have a good record of deserting both of them when he was needed, the anger he felt for his supposed best friend showed as his magical aura glowed red fiercely for all to see. It took Richard several minutes to calm him down enough for them to continue their conversation, when Richard finally had Harry calm again, he nodded to the door, "Shall we go back in," he asked.
Harry nervously rubbed at his forehead then ran his hand through his hair, "Does Hermione know?"
Richard looked around taking his eyes off the door to his daughters' room and looking Harry in the eye before he nodded "Yes, she knows, the news that Weasley ran out on her, it disturbed her but she did not take it as bad as I thought she would."
"Mr Granger, I want to ask your permission to ask Hermione to marry me, and I want your solemn promise that if it should fail and I die and she has a baby from the bonding you will do all you can to help her, I'll make a will out before we bond and leave her everything I own so she or the child will never have to work or worry about money," Harry said never being more serious in his entire life.
"Harry I know she's your best friend and that you have always been close, would that be enough, would you really do that for my little girl?" Richard asked.
"Do I have your blessing?" Harry asked.
Richard nodded "You can ask her Harry but I…" he trailed off as he lost control of his emotions.
Harry walked back into Hermione's room and reaching the bed he got on the bed and lay down next to Hermione and placed his arm around her waist, he had tears falling from his eyes as he held her tight. No one there said a word as they watched the young man shed tears for the young woman sleeping next to him.
Twenty minutes later Hermione stirred and even before she opened her eyes she knew who was holding her, she remembered the way he felt, she even remembered the slight weight of his arm and his scent from three years before when he had comforted her in a similar way. It was something only he had ever done for her, if Ron had been in this position he would have tried to take things further, she was sure of that after fighting him off for the past two years. Opening her eyes she slowly turned her head to look at him "Hi Harry, how was your holiday to Brazil?" she asked trying to smile.
"Hermione, your dad tells me that if you got married the bonding magic might be enough to break the curse, will you marry me?" Harry said quietly into her ear.
"Harry I can't do that, what if you end up taking the curse, no I can't do that, but thank you," she answered.
"So everything I went through my entire life was for nothing then?" Harry said causing everyone in the room to sit up and listen more carefully.
Helen, Hermione's mum knew what Harry meant immediately, she had known how the two of them felt about each other for years, it seemed she was the only one in the room that did.
"What on earth are you talking about Harry?" Hermione said her voice sounding a little colder than she had meant for it to be.
"Every thing I went through from my first year at Hogwarts, I did so that you could have a life, the Troll, the basilisk, death eaters, Malfoy, Voldemort, I rid the world of them so that you could have a good, long and happy life." Harry said just as firmly as she had.
"I don't understand Harry, you're not making sense, you did what you did to survive so that our world could live in peace." Hermione said as she looked at him with her deep passionate brown eyes.
"Oh for 'GODS SAKE' woman, wake up 'I LOVE YOU', I've always loved you, everything I did, I did for you, sod the world, sod everything, I would have just given up and died without you. I want you to live, I want you to be my wife, if I die then I'll die the happiest man alive," Harry said in a mixture of shouts and whispers, surprising everyone there.
Wide eyed Hermione stared at him for several minutes, "How the hell can you die the happiest man alive?" she asked him while chuckling at him at the same time.
"Hermione Jane Granger will you bloody well marry me or not?" Harry asked with a slight chuckle of his own.
"Are you sure you want to do this?" Hermione asked quietly, serious once again.
"Yes Hermione I want to do this, you have no idea how much," Harry answered then he whispered in her ear "I might not be as good as Ron in bed but I will show you just how much I love you."
"Harry James Potter I'll have you know that I'm still a virgin," Hermione said rather indignantly before chuckling and whispering back to him "thank you Harry, you have no idea just how happy this makes me."
Harry kissed her on the cheek then climbed from the bed "I have a few things to do, I'll be back to collect you later," he said a huge smile almost splitting his face in two.
As Harry walked from the room to make some really hurried arrangements Hermione asked for a quiet word with her mother. Richard ushered the visitors Bill and George Weasley, Luna Lovegood, and Fleur Weasley from the room and followed them into the corridor. In the corridor their conversation centred around Harry's proposal, they had all known for years that the couple belonged together, it had just seemed they would never realise it as long as Harry remained a noble prat, and buried his feelings because of Ron.
While they talked in the corridor Hermione asked her mother if she could go over to her flat and fetch one of her hidden journals, she wanted the one titled Hogwarts and the search.
Harry was rushing around making very urgent arrangements, having talked to one of his friends about presiding over the wedding later that day, he was busy making sure they would have all their friends gathered at his home that afternoon at three.
Wedding rings were bought from the small jewellers he favoured, he begged Madam Malkin to have a muggle dress in Hermione's size (the information on Hermione's size Madam Malkin refused to divulge) delivered to his home for two pm, with a little persuasion she promised she would personally make the very first personal home delivery made by Madam Malkin's Robes for all occasions in their 100 years trading.
Harry returned to St Mungo's at twelve thirty and by one pm he had settled Hermione into the master bedroom of Potter Hall, he left the room carrying a journal Hermione had asked him to take a look through before they were married.
At five minutes before three, Harry stood at the hastily prepared alter with his closest male friend Neville Longbottom by his side, tears slowly crept down his cheek as he waited, he had read several pages from the journal Hermione had given him. The journal was filled with her private thoughts from her years at Hogwarts and the year they spent in their quest to destroy the evil that was Voldemort, as he waited his thoughts were filled with Hermione's words, over and over again through the journal she had written how much she loved him.
Neville nudged Harry in his side and passed him a handkerchief "Come on Harry buck up everything will work out okay," he said as he gave his friend a weak smile.
Harry gave Neville a huge grin even through the tears that were falling, "Neville you have no idea just how okay everything is going to be, I've never been able to understand what was meant by happy tears before today, but take my word for it mate there is no stopping them."
Harry dabbed away the tears and as he handed the handkerchief back to Neville, music started to play and Harry recognised the Muggle wedding march as he saw Hermione walking slowly down the aisle on her fathers arm. She had refused to be carried and insisted on making the short walk under her own power.
Harry's mouth fell open as he saw her; Madam Malkin had out done her self with the dress she had delivered. It fitted Hermione perfectly and showed her figure at its best, it was made of pure white silk with small lilies and roses embroidered on the body fitting bodice, the skirt flared out just below her waist and reached down to the floor, a small train was held by Lena Weasley, Georges three year old daughter. Harry's little godson Teddy Lupin followed Lena carrying a small cushion with the wedding rings on it, Harry almost chuckled when he saw the look of utter concentration on the faces of the two children.
Harry's entire world seem to narrow down to just the woman in white who was walking slowly toward him, his heart rate had increased and the love he had kept hidden from her for years was finally visible for all to see, as his aura flared a bright golden colour that reached out and fully enveloped Hermione as she reached him.
What surprised most of the guests was Hermione's aura also flared and seemed to reach out toward Harry; even the Muggles that were at the wedding could see what was happening so powerful were the two auras when they joined.
The ceremony its self brought tears to quite a few eyes, as the vows were said. Quite a few of the guests were saying silent prayers for the couple as they listened to the words used in Muggle weddings, Harry's positive "I do," was duplicated by Hermione as she too said her "I do," with true sincerity showing in her voice.
As they all sat down to celebrate and enjoy the slightly disorganised reception Harry stood to speak to the gathering, all their eye's turned to him as he tapped his fork on a glass, the silence that fell was almost deafening.
"First I want to thank you all for dropping what you were doing on such short notice, I know some of you have cancelled meetings or taken a few hours off from work, and I want you all to know that it means a lot to Hermione and I. Now most of you think that you know why we got married, am I right?" Harry said looking at his guests.
Most looked at him and gave small sad smiles while nodding their heads to him. Harry looked around at them all individually, then Neville spoke up "Harry all I can say is bout time you took the blinkers off."
Several of the guests looked at Neville as though he had no idea what he was saying, while both Harry and Hermione gave him a smile.
"Well folks if you think I married this wonderful woman just to save a friend from dying, then I have to tell you all, you are wrong. The reason I asked Hermione to marry me is the same reason I tackled the various evils we came across, I rid the world of Voldemort not for you, not for the world, all I did was not for any noble reason, unless you count being in love with my best friend since we were twelve years old, everything I did was to make sure she could live a long and happy life, free of all the evil that all that pureblood bigotry brought to our way of life. I have loved Hermione for as long as I have be capable of loving, I thank the gods for the opportunity to be her husband and I will be the best husband I can be for as long as I live, if I should leave this world before her then I will wait for her to join me before setting out on the next great adventure, I promise you all that I will love this wonderful woman for all eternity. Again thanks for coming," Harry said looking into Hermione's shining eyes.
With tears of joy on her cheeks Hermione stood up as Harry sat down, "I'd like to add just a few words to what Harry just said. This morning I gave Harry my private journal, the one I kept as we grew up together, it covered the time from the day we met until just three years ago, I finished writing in it on the day I thought that Harry would get back together with Ginny. That journal has revealed to Harry my true heart, my life long love for him. He said he thanks the gods, well I too thank the gods, I also thank the fates that decided I should be struck down with an evil dark curse, because today I have had all my deepest desires fulfilled, I love Harry more than life itself and I always will."
Harry stood and pulled his new wife into his arms and they kissed a kiss that revealed all the love they felt for each other for anyone to see.
Four hours later Harry carried Hermione up to the master bedroom of her new home and placed her gently on the bed.
An hour after that the magical pulse that swept out from Potter Hall was felt hundreds of miles away, its power destroying the curse and a huge number of dark objects through out the country as it passed through them. Some of the power swept through Hogwarts and actually strengthened the wards that surrounded the ancient school.
Two months before her first wedding anniversary Hermione Potter proudly handed her first baby to his father for the first time, "He has your eyes Harry," she whispered as he leaned over and placed a kiss on her sweat covered brow.
"Thank you," he managed to say as he tried to swallow the lump in his throat that had appeared as Hermione took her baby from the midwife, and kissed the curly brown hair on the head of their new son for the very first time. With a tired but happy smile on her face she looked up at her husband, "I love you so much Harry." She whispered.
"I love you too mother of our son," Harry said with a huge happy smile for the woman who had just given birth, "more than I can ever say."
The following day at lunch time Harry helped Hermione down stairs to the living room, where they were greeted by Neville Longbottom and his girlfriend Luna Lovegood, and Helen and Richard Granger, each wanted to hold the new addition to the house of Potter.
The naming ceremony went smoothly Neville and Luna were named as godparents to the new Potter who was given the name James Richard Potter. He was the first of four new Potters, Harry and Hermione lived a quiet life out of the lime light, Harry became a rather successful business man, while Hermione turned her great mind to writing, having several best sellers in both the magical and the muggle worlds. The Potters were a very happy family and remained so for many, many years.