Silly me…it wasn't until after I posted this and went to check that I realized that I had forgotten to put on a disclaimer.
You know the drill…I don't own the characters [otherwise it the story would have ended very differently…just saying ;) ]
I hope you enjoy this. I have another chapter coming up that takes place a little bit in the future. And then perhaps one more that happens a few years in the future if I get some good feedback. I would really appreciate any and all comments that you have after reading this. Especially if you think it's crap. Then I know not to write anything else along these lines…or at least not to post it on here :)
So…after an awkwardly written add-on to my story, I hope you read it, and at the very least enjoy it to some degree.
"What are you doing Daddy?" Came the quite and sweet voice that can only come from a child, as she climbed up on to his lap.
"Daddy's reading a book." The tiny figure brought the book cover in front of her. And with all the force and indignation of a child who was only just learned her letters. She began to sound out the cover
"Ha-r-i Po-t-r an-de…" She cast a confused look at her father. "But you're Harry, daddy. Why are you reading a book about yourself?"
"Because he enjoys the mindless killing of his brain cells." An obviously annoyed voice came from within the kitchen.
Harry gave his daughter a wink. "What Mummy is trying to say is that she doesn't approve of my interest in my very own fictitious world."
"Honestly Harry, I really don't understand you at all. Rita Skeeter's own work, not including that watered down version that's in that piece of trash, has ten times more truth then what's written that book."
Harry looked over at his very pretty wife, wiping her hands on her apron as she walked into the living room. "Now that's being harsh. There is some truth writing in it."
She raised her eyebrows in a 'tell-me-more' look. "Oh, really?" She asked in that smug voice that she used only for taunting Harry, as she sat down on the armrest of the chair.
He smiled up at her in response. "Yes, really. For example," Harry motioned to himself. "My names actually Harry. And you…" he took the time to make the big motion of pointing to his wife, which caused their daughter to giggle.
Whether he did it for his own amusement, their daughter's, or her own, she wasn't sure, but it had made her smile a bit.
"really are none other then my childhood best friend, lover, and sharer in all of my many adventures." She smiled down at him, obviously pleased with his answer.
Harry grinned up at her, his sly smile let her know she wasn't getting away with only a compliment. He turned back to the book and began flipping to a certain point in the book. "Though you must tell me, when did this affair with Ron take place? I vaguely recall some different events occurring when we were seventeen." Harry waggled his eyebrows suggestively at Hermione. "I really must send a letter off to Ron asking about this."
Hermione's face turned a bright shade of scarlet. "Give me that bloody book right NOW!" She yelled as she dived and attempted to snatch the book from his hands. Years of quidditch practice and dueling gave him the advantage. Harry easily anticipating her movement and moved the book out of her reaches.
The young Avery laughed at the spectacle her parents were performing for her. Neither noticed as she got off the chair and took a seat on the floor, a safe distance away from the flailing arms and kicking legs of her playful parents. Permitting them to try and wrestle the book away from one another.
As it always happened when they fought like this, Harry let Hermione win. Sitting victoriously on the floor a meter away from the chair they had originated from, Hermione clutched the book. Her hair widely in disarray from their recent tousle, she tried unsuccessfully to tuck a rouge piece back behind her ear.
"Honestly Harry, I still can't even phantom why in all that's good and holy that you even agreed to an interview with that…that…that lie sprouting woman." Hermione sputtered as she tried again to smooth the wild strands of her hair, all the while keeping a tight grip on the hard covered book.
Harry crawled over to Avery and proceeded to lie on his back and throw her into the air much to her enjoyment. "I don't know, I suppose I thought it was a good idea at the time." He turned to Hermione and awarded her with one of his dazzling smiles one of the ones that had first won her over. He turned his attention back to his giggling little girl. "Though I must say Ron and I had a very good laugh over some of the parts in there."
Once more Hermione turned red. "He's already read it?" Her arms flopped helplessly on the floor before she flung them up in exasperation. "Great, just bloody great! Now how am I supposed to face the Weasley family at Christmas? They're all going to think that this trash has some vein of truth." She pointed an accusing finger at Harry. "This is all your fault!" Thought even through her fuming, a smile was poking through the corner of her mouth.
Harry set down Avery as she started to wiggle out of his grasp. She then tottered over to her mummy. Hermione opened her arms to accept the tiny child. Avery picked up the now dropped book before sitting down in her mum's lap. She studied it quite intently for a four year old. Every once in a while casting a look up to her mum's face and then back down to the book. Harry and Hermione exchanged amused looks.
Finally Avery spoke. "Mummy, what's wrong with your hair in the picture?" Harry could not have contained himself if he had tried his very hardest, something he had not even bothered to employ. He rolled on the floor laughing and Hermione, who once again retained her beet red complexion, glared at him to a strong extent.
After Harry's mirth had diminished, he lay on his stomach and rested his face in his upturned hands and smiled at Avery's confused face. She had only asked, what had seemed to her, an important question.
"When I was first telling the lady who wrote this book all about my life she seemed to think that Hermione lacked any notable physical characteristics. She then thusly, invented what has become known as the 'bushy haired syndrome' for those of us who know the real Hermione."
Avery looked up at her mother and tentatively fingered one of her loose waves. "But Mummy has such pretty hair." Hermione smiled down at her baby.
Harry nodded in agreement. "If there was ever a thing I disagreed with in the books, it would be on how she down played your Mummy's beauty. She obviously didn't think my description of beautiful and absolutely gorgeous were suitable characteristics for a 'sidekick'." Harry never once broke his gaze with Hermione as he said this. Hermione's beet face dimmed, but a blush still graced her cheeks.
Avery pulled herself off of her mother's lap and walked over to Harry, book in hand. "Will you read me your story Daddy?" She thrust the book forward.
Harry brought himself up into a sitting position. "Maybe when you're older."
This, was obviously the wrong answer. No sooner had he said those words did Avery's bottom lip start quivering.
Harry, wanting to advert disaster, hastily explained. "You see my little birdie, there are lots of scary parts in the story, and a lot of sad parts. Parts where I have cried my eyes out. There are things in it that you'd understand better when you're older."
Avery looked at him rather oddly, as if he had just said the strangest thing in the world. "Daddy's don't cry." She firmly stated before turning to Hermione. "Mummy, tell Daddy it's not nice to lie." She then fixated Harry with a look that was identical to the look Harry had just been give by Hermione. He smiled to himself. Avery was indeed Hermione's child.
Harry couldn't help but smile with pride at his livid daughter. "Maybe I'll read you the first one. How about that?" He asked in compromise.
Avery's mouth dropped open in amazement. "You mean there's more then one?
Harry grinned as he held up seven fingers. "There's seven!" He emphasized. Avery continued to look at him, mouth agape.
Hermione glanced over at the grandfather clock resting in the corner. After reading the time, she gave Harry 'the look' telling him that it was his turn to put the tiny bundle of energy in front of him to bed.
"Alrighty then," Harry said as he hoisted the now very little Avery up. "I do believe it is now time for you, young lady, to be getting to bed."
Avery opened her mouth to protest, but was interrupted when her mouth became occupied by a large yawn. She then contested defeat, and rested her head against her Daddy's shoulder and slowly continued to open and close her eyes sleepily.
Hermione went up the large staircase first and pulled back the covers on Avery's bed. The bright red walls flicked and danced from the light in the hall, and for a moment Hermione was brought back to her school years.
Harry helped the little girl change into her night gown before carefully laying her down in her large bed and pulled the covers up high. He rose to go, but as an after thought, he lent back down and gave her a kiss on the forehead. Hermione leaned against the doorframe and watched, just watched. It was the moments like these that made Hermione feel as if nothing was wrong in the world. Harry came over and stood besides Hermione. He wrapped an arm over her shoulders and brought her close.
"I don't know how you do it…" Hermione snuggled closer. "Whenever it's my turn to put her to bed, she could bounce off the walls till three in the morning. But whenever it's your turn, all you have to do is pick her up, and she's out like a light!"
Harry chuckled. "It's obviously my secret baby ability. I can get one from sugar induced craze to sleeping like a log in 2.4 seconds."
Hermione just shook her head, grinning. "You're such a tool."
Harry twisted around a bit so he was looking at Hermione. "But a handsome tool, right?" He asked, eyes wide, in a pre-shock look. "I'm a handsome tool."
Hermione bit back a laugh as she patted his head in reassurance. "Yes Harry...a very handsome tool."
Happily comforted, Harry took his spot, holding her from behind. Hermione loved being held this way. He was much taller then she was, so the way he wrapped his arms around her, always made her feel so safe and protected. As if he could save her from anything.
Hermione leaned into his embrace, a question was bothering her. "Have you ever wondered what it would be like if life had been like it was in the books? Would you have chosen that life?" She whispered.
She could feel Harry looking down at her. Suddenly Hermione had a sudden sense of urgency to explain her question. She twisted around so that she was facing him. "I mean, you would have had a more exciting life, and you would be living an peaceful happy life right now, and the war would be over, and-
"Never." Harry cut her off. "Because that would mean I'd be losing the two most important people in my life. I'd gladly leave the world of excitement and adventure if it meant having you. There is no life I would want over the one I have now."
Hermione smiled and rested her head against his shoulder once more. They stood there and watched Avery sleep for quite some time before either of them spoke again.
"Though…." Harry whispered. "I am quite positive that Harry and Hermione would have gotten together in the end anyways." Hermione now stood there wondering where he could possibly go with this angle.
"How can you say that? We've both read the book." Harry stared hard at her. "Ok, fine," she admitted. "or just read the last few chapters to see how it ended. And you and I both know very well, that Hermione goes with Ron, and Harry ends up with Ginny."
"Ah," Harry exclaimed and raised a finger in the air to mark his point. "But I am quite sure that Harry and Hermione had a continuous affair over the course of the years to follow. How else do you explain how all of those kids of yours and 'Ron's' all carry the unmistakable essence of 'Harry' in them?"
Hermione rolled her eyes and looked down at the floor. Leave it to Harry to have some completely ridiculous theory, one without any proof or verification. "What ever you say love, what ever you say…"
"It's true!" He exclaimed. "I swear it. After all, what woman alive can resist my charms? There's no way that Hermione didn't go rushing to Harry at least once between those nineteen years mentioned at the end. Which, might I add, was not needed." And again, the two of them remained silent. This time Harry broke the silence. "Do you regret any of it?"
Hermione took him by the hand and led him away from their sleeping daughter's room. "There is no perfect relationship. Not in the books, and most certainly not in real life. We all do things we wish we hadn't…"
A flash of memories from the day Harry walked out on her came flooding in. It may have been in the early part of their relationship, but it had only made it an even harder and longer bridge to cross before they could finally start mending again.
Harry hadn't said anything. He had simply got a bag together and left. It wouldn't be until much later that he would admit that he had been confused and scared. For the first time, a real life was dangling in front of him, and he panicked. During his absence, all Hermione had done was worry, and cry. There had been a lot of crying.
"and we all say things we wish with all of our heart we could erase."
This time the memory flashing was of the day Hermione had caused their sweet baby to cry. Hermione had been tired, Avery wouldn't stop crying, Harry was inured and barely conscious. Avery had only been a baby, Hermione had no reason to yell at her, but she had been at her wit's end and she couldn't stop herself.
She had rounded up on the baby and just screamed at her. Avery had paused for a moment before her lip started to quiver and more silent tears fell. Hermione had had it. 'I wish I never had you!' She screamed. The moment the words had been out of her mouth Hermione had clamped a hand across her mouth and she backed away from the still crying Avery, afraid of what she might do.
Harry, who had witnessed the whole thing, stood up, and with whatever strength he could muster, he picked up the clearly upset baby and carried her to her room. He then proceeded to shut the door, and he didn't come back out. Hermione had collapsed onto the floor and cried unabatedly for several hours. It wasn't until the next morning, that Harry, stone faced, finally looked at Hermione and her red puffy eyes. She knew it would be hard to fix those words, but she would do anything to make it happen.
"But I think we have succeeded in making each other happy. Which, in the end, is all that we really can ask from one another." She took a hold of his left hand and brought it up to her heart. "Since the day you asked me to marry you, I was prepared to have all that you had to offer, the good and the bad. And from the day we said our vows, I have had no regrets. Lapses perhaps," she smiled at him. "but never any regrets."
Harry lifted his other hand up and caressed her cheek, he then brought her close and embraced her tightly. "You positive you wouldn't have preferred a Weasley? You could have had you pick." Harry asked jokingly, as he loosed his grip on Hermione ever so slightly.
Hermione leaned back and tapped her chin, as if in deep thought. "Now that you mention it, I always thought Ginny fancied me a bit." She smiled up at her husband and tilted her head up at him.
Chocking back a laugh, Harry rolled his eyes at Hermione. "I'm pretty sure you would have had to fight back a few guys for that role."
Hermione smiled up at him as she reached up and wrapped her arms around his neck. "Then aren't you glad I made the right choice in picking you? My beet in the carrot patch?"
Harry couldn't resist, he broke out laughing. Placing his hands on her hips, Harry pulled her close. "A beet? That's the best analogy you could come up with?"
"And a very fitting analogy it is." Hermione teased her husband as she relaxed into the embrace.
They stood there for awhile, just holding one another. They had been through so much together. Suddenly, Hermione felt Harry stiffen. After a moment, Harry pulled away slightly, just enough so he could look Hermione in the eyes.
"Hermione, I want to ask you a question. And if the answer is no, that's ok, but I really want you to think hard on your answer first, ok?"
Hermione looked up at him suspiciously. "What are you up too?"
Harry shook his head. "I want you to promise first." Hermione sighed and rolled her eyes.
"Very well, I promise. Happy?" When Harry gave her a smile, Hermione simply waited expectantly. "Well?" She tilted her head a bit to the side to urge him on.
"Ok, ok. Here goes. Hermione, I was wondering if…if maybe….I just would like to know…." What ever it was Harry was trying to say, it wasn't coming out.
"Harry, what is it? Just tell me."
"Look this is hard, ok?" Harry looked truthfully frightened over what he wanted to say. It was a look Hermione was not used to.
"Just spit it out already!" Seeing Harry like this tended to make Hermione nervous.
"Iwannahaveanotherbaby!" It came out quickly and muffled together. But the word baby stood out like a red flag. Her mouth opened slightly as Harry looked away.
Hermione put her hand under his chin and turned his face so that he was looking at her. "Please…what did you just say?"
Harry letting out one last sigh. "I want to have another baby." He said slowly and carefully.
Hermione's hand dropped from Harry's face and came up with her other hand to cover her mouth. Harry, obviously thought he had done something wrong, and was quick to explain.
"It just that, I've always wanted a large family, and Avery's getting older now, and I want someone for her to play with and fight with, and-" Harry would have very likely continued on with his ramblings if Hermione had not reached up and pulled his face on to her own.
She placed a soft kiss on his lips and reached for his hands, which he gripped back tightly. Harry looked at her in disbelief. He released one of his hands from their grip and brought it up to Hermione's face and wiped away the tears on her shining face.
"Really?" The hope in his voice could not have been hidden.
Hermione smiled brightly and nodded. "Really.
"YES!" Harry shouted as he jumped up and swung Hermione around.
Hermione let out a laugh before quickly remembering that they had a little person sleeping next door. "Shhh, shhhh!" She covered Harry's mouth with her hand. "We don't want to wake the one child that we do have, now do we?" Harry let her down, but his smile that extended from ear to ear hadn't even flickered.
"Remember though," Hermione shook a stern finger at him. "Ten years form now when Avery hates our guts and baby number two is a trouble maker," Hermione smiled up at him and jabbed him in the chest. "This was all YOUR idea!"
"I would never forget." Harry whispered as he pulled her close. Hermione smiled softly into his chest.