A/N: As promised, a double update, here is the final installment. It's only short, just to finish it off, but I hope you enjoy just the same


~ Epilogue: Five Years Later ~

Harry and Hermione married the summer after Harry had proposed, in the Weasley's orchard. Molly and Arthur were delighted to host another wedding, despite the early protestations of Hermione claiming it would be too much hassle to inflict upon them. Molly calmed these anxieties immediately, letting Hermione know in no uncertain terms that she was as much a daughter to her as Ginny was, and as such she was entitled a big Weasley wedding, and furthermore, Molly had been planning their wedding long before they had even got engaged, and to deprive her of bringing her long thought of plans to fruition would be just plain cruel.

Hermione was simply glowing on her wedding day, partly because she was finally getting her happy ending with the love of her life and her soul mate, and partly because of the secret she shared with Harry, a secret that made his heart glow, and his eyes shine. Approximately six weeks before the wedding, Hermione had found out she was pregnant, but she swore Harry to secrecy, not wanting to tell anyone until after the wedding. Seven months after the wedding, Hermione gave birth to a beautiful baby girl, who was christened Lillian Rose Potter.

Hermione continued to work at the school as a senior tutor; Minerva had frequently asked if she would like to take up a regular teaching post, taking over a subject of her choice, but Hermione always refused – just like her second year, when deciding on her third year options, Hermione still could not choose between the subjects, and as taking over every subject wasn't an option, she continued to tutor the students who needed the extra help. At least this way she could get involved with every subject Hogwarts offered, without having to resort to a time-turner. Hermione finally did what she had sugessted with concern to her business, no longer working there on a regular basis, she contented to run things behind the scenes, leaving katie in a full managerial position to deal with hirings and firings, banking and the basic paperwork.

Hermione was as happy as she could be, living in Grimmauld Place, bearing the name of Potter, and watching her beautiful daughter grow, Lilly had Harry's startling green eyes, and her hair was as black as his, but fell around her face in a mass of curls she had obviously inherrited from her mother. In the eyes of everyone who saw her she was deemed beautiful, and her parents thought her simply perfect.

Harry came home early one cold Friday afternoon in February, five years after their wedding, to find Hermione, Lilly and George in the dining room. Hermione had taken the day off work and was assisting Kreacher with some last minute adjustments to a bright birthday cake in the centre of the large dining table, which was laden with an assortment of party food typical of child's birthday.

Lilly was in the corner of the room, with George, and as Harry watched from the doorway it was hard to decide who was having more fun with the magical balloon animals. He stood for a moment enjoying the happy family scene, then said with a smirk, "I thought it was Lily's birthday, not yours George."

Hermione turned at the sound of Harry's voice, a smile erupting on her face, she was by his side instantly, kissing him quickly on the lips, she said, "I'm so glad you managed to come home early. Everyone will be arriving in an hour, and the decorations still need finishing. And I have something to tell you," she said quietly, her smile widening.

Harry's smile widened in return, "What a coincidence, because I have something to tell you too."

Lilly had finally managed to free herself from the scampering balloon animals and came running from the other side of the room, "Daddy! Daddy!" she called, jumping up into his waiting arms, stopping Harry from continuing his sentence, "Come and see the animals Uncle George made."

Hermione shook her head indulgently, "It seems Uncle George has been having too much fun taking our daughter on a balloon animal safari to help with the rest of the decorations, like he said he was."

Harry walked over the corner where George was sitting, surrounded by a remarkable collection of hippos, rhinos, giraffes, lions and tigers, and other animals one expected to find in the African wilderness, all grazing or hunting, or lying as they would in the wild – it really was a work of art. George had the decency to look a little ashamed of consequently being no help to Hermione, but defended himself all the same:

"What can I say? I got creative and a little bit too involved with the balloons. But honestly, 'Mione, once I levitate these things into the air, it's going to be like a balloon safari park in your own dining room, you won't need any other decorations." He promised.

To prove his point he promptly levitated the balloons, and set them roaming an appropriate height above the table.

"You've got admit, love, they're pretty impressive." Conceded Harry, letting Lilly back down, to continue playing with her favourite uncle.

Hermione looked above her and watched the animals for a minute or two, then smiled. "Alright, I'll let you off, George. You've kept Lilly entertained for hours, and they really are a work of art."

"Why thank you." George accepted the praise, with a bow, then standing strait, he became serious, "I think I may have found a new product here. They we're pretty easy to make, once I got the hang of it, and a simple colour change charm gets the desired effect so you can tell a tiger from a zebra. A few modified animation charms to get the right movements and sounds, and voila! You have your very own balloon zoo. It's a definite money-spinner, balloons work for kids of all ages." George nodded thoughtfully, and Hermione grinned,

"I hope Lilly will be getting royalties for every pack you sell, these were after all her balloons, and she chose the animals. you could say this was entirely her own idea" She suggested with a grin.

George knew she was joking, but answered seriously all the same, and shrugged, "Don't see why not. You're right Hermione, I wouldn't have even thought of the idea if Lilly hadn't told me what to do for her."

Harry laughed, "She was only kidding mate, these are entirely your own creation."

George smiled, and picked Lilly up so that she might reach the giraffe floating near his head, which she had been desperately trying to jump up to and reach. Chuckling at the excited giggle Lilly expelled as she finally grabbed her prize, he turned to Harry and Hermione, "I know you were only joking, 'Mione, but I was serious. My kids will inherit the stores one day, but I want my Goddaughter to have something out of it as well, she will have her very own product 'Lilly Rose's Balloon Safari' and everyone that sells, the money is hers. To add to her trust fund, call it a birthday present." George smiled.

"Thank you George," Hermione smiled kissing him on the cheek, "You're the best Godfather in the world."

An hour later, and Lilly's party was in full swing, all the Weasleys, and their offshoots, were in attendance: George had finally married Angelina after many years of dating, and Angelina was now heavily pregnant with their first child. Ginny and Rob were one of the first to arrive, Isabella anxious to play with Lilly as mummy didn't play as much now since the recent arrival of the new addition to the family, and Declan was getting too old to play with little girls. Bill and Fleur arrived a little later, once they had both returned from work, the youngest of their brood were not yet old enough to attend Hogwarts with their sister, and had arrived with Molly after spending the day at the Burrow. Arthur followed not long after, coming strait from the ministry, and a steady stream of Harry's colleagues and their families followed after that.

By 6 O'clock, the Potters' house was full, the children seated around the large dining table filling up on sweets, chips and chocolate, the fruit platters Hermione had insisted upon lay forgotten by the children, and only touched by the odd adult after they had passed the more desirable morsels to their children.

The sideboard at the back of the room had been covered with platters of food for the adults who were attending, and trays of Champagne, wine and spirits floated around the room at adult height, well out of reach of the children, and the adults were as well entertained as the children, with the food, drink, and balloon safari.

Harry and Hermione stood a little apart from everyone else, after doing the initial rounds of the room, surveying their daughter's party, each with a contented smile. Harry wrapped his arm around his wife's waist, summoned a pair of full champagne glasses, and handing one to Hermione whispered, "I was going to wait until after the party to tell you, but I can't keep it in any longer."

Hermione turned in Harry's arms, a smile on her lips, a question in her eyes, "Tell me what?" she asked, taking the glass but not taking a drink.

"Old Luther is retiring," he whispered, "And he's asked me to step up to his place when he goes. I'm going to be head Auror."

"Harry, that's fantastic!" Hermione beamed, though still keeping her voice down, not wanting to draw attention to them just yet.

"I know, it's great, I didn't expect it, not yet. I mean I hoped, in a few years maybe…" Harry trailed off trying to not look too pleased with himself. Hermione beamed even more and kissed him on the cheek.

"You still think too little of yourself." She said indulgently, then raised her glass, "To the new head Auror."

Harry grinned, chinked his glass with hers and took a sip, when he noticed Hermione didn't drink he asked, "Are you not going to take a drink?"

Hermione's smile widened, and she shook her head, "No, no I'm not."

Harry's brows furrowed in question and she continued, "Now for my news. I hope this promotion comes with a raise, as we're going to have another mouth to feed." She said quietly her grin widening with every word.

Harry's eyebrows raised, and genuine delight and slight shock graced his features, he glanced at her stomach quickly, "You mean…"

Hermione nodded, "I took a test this morning. Lilly is finally going to get the little brother she wants."

Harry pulled Hermione into a hug, whispering in her ear, "Hermione this is fantastic," then pulling back, he looked into her face frowning, "Isn't it too early to tell if it's a boy?"

Hermione shrugged, "Remember how, with Lilly, I was just convinced I was having a girl from the beginning. This doesn't feel the same, I feel like it's a boy." She grinned.

Harry grinned again and pulled her back into his embrace, "Never in a million years did I expect to be this Happy. But you have made me the happiest man in the world, Hermione, truly you have." He whispered into her hair, Hermione could hear the emotion in his words, and knew his eyes would be tearing up. "Thank you, for coming back to me."

She smiled into his neck, as happy tears came to her eyes likewise, "No, thank you, Harry, thank you for finding me and bringing me home."

A/N: And so, it ends. It's taken just under a year, but I finally finished. I would like to thank each and every one of you for taking the time to read, thank you to those who read from the first posting, who stuck with me and waited out the long times between updates. Thank you to everyone who joined at all stages of the process, thank you to all for sticking with it right to the end.

It has been a joy to write, to let the piece develop, and it is you guys who have made it a joy, I've loved to hear your reviews, I've loved to know your thoughts, and I thank you for the constructive criticism which has helped me progress. And a big thank you to those who have pointed out the glaring mistakes I have sometimes made, and had to edit.

I hope you liked how it ended, and forgive the shortness of the chapter. But this was after all, only an epilogue, a quick summing up of Hermione's happy ending - simply a detailed 'and they all lived happily ever after'.

I will be going back to the beginning, re-reading the entire thing and possibly making some minor changes, but it will be entirely gramatical, there will be nothing new to the plot in future updates.

And now I will say goodbye for the last time *wipes away a tear*

If you liked this story, please check out my other fics. Over and out.