A/N: You should know this already but: guess what, my name is not JK Rowling. Unfortunately.
They were all gathered. Everyone was chattering and conversing with one another and over all just having a great time. Then Harry got up, clinking his glass with a fork. The room fell silent and they all turned to look at him. He cleared his throat.
"Dear family, friends, colleagues… everyone who knows this couple in one way or the other. Today we celebrate the love of two wonderful people, my closest friends." He nodded to the table Hermione and Ron were sitting at, both looking smashing in their wedding outfits.
"As best man, I have been asked to give a speech to you tonight and to say a few words of thanks to all of you. Usually the thanks come in last, but I would like to start with them. Thank you all for coming."
Some people laughed at his turning of the usual order.
"Thank you for being here today to celebrate this marriage. Ron and Hermione will be addressing a few people in particular later on. As for the speech: I have been thinking long and hard about it, but in the end I decided that the words from the heart would be the best, so if at any point my speech becomes less coherent, blame it on nervousness."
He looked around the room, taking in all those familiar faces, all those people they had met over the years. His eyes rested once again on the happy couple before he continued.
"Now, to any of you who know Ron and Hermione – and I suppose you all know them otherwise you would not be sitting here listening to me rambling – it may not come as a surprise that their road towards this day hasn't exactly been without obstacles. I think it's right to say that whomever said relationships were a bumpy ride, was probably thinking about these two."
A laughter rose up from the crowd. Hermione blushed crimson, which looked rather cute with her off-white gown.
"For a bumpy ride it has been. As a close friend, I got to witness the blossoming of their relationship, their ups and their downs. I will not elaborate on the downs – at least, not too much, let's keep it agréable, non? – but I'd like to point out some interesting facts to you. When they first met, Ron and Hermione did not like each other at all. Ron thought Hermione was a nosy, bossy, know-it-all nightmare and Hermione thought Ron was a… what was the word again, Hermione?"
Hermione muttered something and Harry said: "I did not quite get that?"
"An annoying bloody foul git," Hermione repeated, a little louder.
"Right, an annoying bloody foul git," he repeated grinning. "So as you can see, all of the elements for a blossoming romance were already there. Though one can always count on a mountain troll to speed things up. Ron, Hermione and I became friends and as all of you will know, we defeated Voldemort that year for the first time. Many a time would follow, but this first time, I literally would not have survived without them. When in second year Hermione was attacked by a Basilisk, Ron and I were always by her side when we didn't have classes. No one thought of love back then, we were just concerned for a friend. Ron even confronted his worst nightmare to save her."
Ron shuddered violently at the mention of Aragog's kin.
Harry took a breath, and after that he drank some water.
"Year three brought us new challenges and once again a new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher. Sadly, he died during the war, but we're really happy to have his son amidst us." He looked at his godson Teddy, whose hair turned red of embarrassment at the sudden attention. "It was the year we found out about Sirius Black and also the year when Ron learnt that pet rats usually don't live for 12 years."
Now it was Ron's turn to look a bit embarrassed. "That wasn't my fault," Ron objected.
"'I know. But still." He paused for a moment. "Hermione looked dreadful that year – sorry dear, you really did – and Ron felt she was living in the past, which, in a way was true, I think. It was only in fourth year that both Ron and Hermione started to realize that what they felt for each other perhaps was more than friendship, even though they were both very much in denial. If you don't talk about it, it doesn't exist, right?"
"If only that worked for dirty laundry as well," Molly sighed, which enticed a new uproar of laughter from the gathered crowd.
"Ah yes, fourth year. To those of you who haven't got a clue what I'm talking about when I say the word 'Yule ball': well, let's just say timing is everything. To those of you who do know what I'm talking about: there is no point repeating what you already know, right?
So, fourth year started it all, but it wasn't until fifth year that I realised something was going on between them. Both of them were named Prefects. It didn't do much good though, because with Dolores Umbridge snooping around Hogwarts, rules were thrown overboard."
"I'd rather say invented by the plenty!" George exclaimed and Harry nodded. "Yes, it was not an easy year for Hogwarts students. Once again, Ron and Hermione came up with an idea to start fighting on our own. Many members of the former Dumbledore's Army are present here today, but besides the happy couple I specifically want to mention Neville, Luna and lovely girlfriend Ginny, for standing by me along the way.
You might wonder where all of this is going, but I'm getting there, don't worry. When Ron tried out for Quidditch Keeper in sixth year, it was Hermione who got him the position really."
Ron looked at Hermione quizzically and Hermione interrupted: "I don't think we need to get into all that detail, don't you think Harry?"
"Now I'd really like to know how you could have had anything to do with me becoming Keeper," Ron grinned.
"I'd say Cormac wasn't seeing things clearly." Harry grinned too and it took a moment for Ron to realise what he was implying.
"No way! Really?" he turned to Hermione, a little shocked. "But you were always going on about abiding by the rules and such!"
"So that was when I knew," Harry continued, as though he didn't hear them. "But they were nowhere near admitting their liking, at least not to each other. I remember that when Ron blurted out Hermione's name in the hospital wing, we all thought they finally be together."
"Wait, I did what?" Ron asked.
"See? He didn't even remember – not even then – and so we had to wait another year for them to come together. And even when they were apart, in the end, all it took for Ron to come back was Hermione whispering his name. Their first kiss was near the end of the Battle for Hogwarts and they have been inseparable ever since. And that brings us here today. So, I would for you all to raise your glasses and bring out a toast on this wonderful couple."
He set the example and raised his glass. He waited until all those present had raised theirs and said:
"To Ron and Hermione, who match so well together. If Ron is ginger, then Hermione is cinnamon. Two spices that complement each other perfectly. To Ron and Hermione, the most wonderful friends anyone can ever wish for. May they be as close in their marriage as in their friendship. And remember guys: as long as you have each other, you can tackle any bump in the road that might occur."
A loud applause erupted from the family and friends as they all toasted to a wonderful future for the newlyweds. Ron and Hermione looked around, their eyes glistening.
"We really are lucky to have such amazing friends," Ron whispered to his wife.