So, I'd like to apologize for the lack of update (again) and the shortness of the chapter (again). Also, this is the last chapter. I sat down to write it and I realized... their relationship had plateaued. There were only two things left to address, neither of which I wanted to spend a lot of time on. So this is the end. I apologize that it's so abrupt. It wasn't supposed to be that way. :( Please forgive me.-KG64
So the weeks passed, with Hermione and Snape a couple that the entire school knew about. A couple the school had grown bored gossiping about. The only way their relationship affected the students was that both the Transfiguration professor and Potions Master were far more amiable than ever before. Some of the more fashion-oriented students noticed Snape's slightly more colorful wardrobe and Hermione's new watch. But very few people made the connection.
The semester faded from winter to spring, and then from spring to summer. The two professors were happy together, but there was still something bothering Snape. He loved Hermione. He loved her more than anything else in the world. He just wasn't sure she knew that.
And he still wasn't entirely convinced she loved him as much as she claimed.
For her part, Hermione knew how much she loved him and she trusted him with all her heart. And she believed him when he whispered the words, 'I love you, Hermione,' just before bed each night.
So it was one night after Hermione had gone to bed that Snape sat alone in his office, looking at a small band of cold in a velvet covered case. Then he snapped it shut. He knew what he had to do.
The next morning, a Saturday, Snape left the castle. He told both Hermione and McGonagall that he had some urgent business to attend to. He walked to Hogsmeade and, from there, Apparated to the home of Mr. and Mrs. Jack Granger.
Both Olivia and Jack were surprised to see him. "Severus, dear, do come in," Olivia encouraged him. "But where is Hermione?"
"She is still at Hogwarts," Snape said quietly. "Is Mr. Granger home? I'd like a word with him."
"Yes, of course," Olivia said, running to the stairs. "Jack, honey. Severus is here. He wants to speak with you."
"Okay, okay, I'm coming."
It wasn't long before he trudged down the stairs, looking as though he had just woken up. "Yes, Severus?" he asked.
Snape sighed. He hadn't the slightest clue what he was doing and very little reasoning for the why. He only knew that, in his heart, it felt right. "Mr. Granger, I—"
"Please, Severus, call me Jack."
"Mr. Granger," he repeated firmly. "I've come to ask your permission to marry your daughter."
A glass crashed in the kitchen, where Olivia Granger had obviously been listening in. Jack Granger also appeared to be in a slight state of shock. Finally he managed, "Are you serious?"
Jack shook his head as though to clear away the surprise. Then he said, "I guess I'm surprised because some part of me still thought you were just using her. I was not expecting this." Snape waited. Mr. Granger smiled. "Yes, Severus. You make my daughter happy, which makes me happy. Therefore, I have one favor to ask of you."
"And that would be?" Snape asked, refusing to agree before he knew what the favor was.
"Don't tell Hermione you asked my permission. She would be mad at the both of us if she found out." Snape nodded and Jack grinned. "Very well. I would also like to remind you that, as nice as it makes me feel to have you ask, I could hardly keep Hermione from doing what she wanted as far as you're concerned. As both my wife and my daughter have reminded me multiple times, Hermione is an adult and she is perfectly capable of making her own decisions."
Snape nodded. "Thank you, Mr. Granger. I best head back then. I told Hermione I had some important business to attend to, but that it wouldn't take long."
Jack Granger nodded, shook Snape's hand and Snape left.
Snape agonized over how to ask her. He agonized for several weeks. And then exams were upon them and he still didn't have a clue. And he could see the school year drawing to a close. It was a few days before the end of term that he finally decided.
By this point, Hermione had noticed his odd behavior. And she feared that he wanted to break things off with her. She knew that wasn't true, but she couldn't help wondering.
And then the last day of term, Snape went down to the kitchens. The elves swarmed around him, offering different foods and treats. He waved them all away. When he opened his mouth to speak, the room grew quiet, the only wizard commanding their attention. "I would like to send something to Professor Granger this evening at the End of Term feast," he stated. "I need you to listen to my instructions very carefully." Bright eyes were wide as they listened to his instructions.
That evening at dinner, Snape was fidgeting. And that only made Hermione nervous. McGonagall stood and said, "We have come to the end of another year. I look forward to seeing many of you back here next year, and I congratulate those of you who will be moving on to bigger and better things." There was a slight smattering of applause for the seventh years and then McGonagall continued. "Please remember as you leave here what you have learned and how important it is that you not do magic over the summer. Let the feast begin."
The plates filled and they all helped themselves to various puddings and pies. Hermione and Snape didn't say a single word to each other. He was traumatized by the thought of how she might respond. She didn't want to say anything because she feared it might spur the conversation in which he would break up with her.
And then their plates were wiped clean.
The deserts were sent up.
And rather than having a still-empty plate, there was a velvet black box, opened to reveal a ring set with a small diamond on Hermione's plate.
She stared at it.
And then everyone at the staff table stared at her as she threw her arms around the Potions Master, crying, "Oh, Severus!"
"I'll take that as a yes," he murmured. "I love you, Miss Granger."
"What happened to calling me Hermione?" she asked.
"I thought I'd call you Miss Granger while I still can," he replied.
She laughed and kissed him. "I love you, Severus. So much."
The wedding was planned quickly and was very small, with only their closest friends and family present. And then the new semester began, where all the students were confused because there were now two Professor Snapes and the new students were confused as to why all the older students complained about both of them.
And the confusion of having two professors with the same last name did not dwindle over the course of the year. It was nearly time for end of year exams when Professor McGonagall pulled a second year aside, handed him an envelope and told him, "Take this to Professor Snape, Walters."
He turned and took some steps away from the headmistress before turning around and asking, "Which Professor Snape, Professor McGonagall?"
McGonagall sighed. "Please think for a moment, Walters, and then go give it to the Professor Snape who isn't gone on maternity leave."
orihah14: Thanks for the review. I'm glad to hear you think so highly of my story. :)
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Reader: Thanks for the review! I'm really into foreign languages so it really excites me to have a reader whose first language isn't English. You made my day! (I don't know any Korean! Sorry!)
Thanks to all of you who reviewed at one point or another, I love you all.
This story is, as always, dedicated to Kelsie (love you! Sorry it's over), with a shout-out to Kate! Hope you enjoyed it!