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"What were you doing up there with her?" shrieked Lavender Brown, staring right through Harry at Ron and Hermione emerging together from the boys' dormitories. Harry heard Ron spluttering behind him as he darted across the room away from them.
- Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
"Nothing, I swear!" said Ron frantically, as Lavender pulled him roughly by the collar to a side, so he was up against the wall. "We were just talking - "
"Talking?!" she screeched. Several people turned to look at her, but she glared at them and they hastily pretended they hadn't seen anything. Bloody hell, thought Ron, paling, she's cornering me. Her brown eyes were hurt and full of jealous rage as they looked back at Ron again. "This is the last straw, Ronald Weasley! I've been holding this in for a long time!" Ron turned and gave Hermione a plain look that seemed to say Help me, please, but Hermione shook her head; he would have to deal with this on his own.
"Look at me!" screamed Lavender once again, stepping away for a moment to glare at the gawking onlookers. Ron followed, walking forward, saying pleadingly, "Come on, Lav-Lav, you're not being reasonable here..."
"Don't call me Lav-Lav! I stopped calling you Won-Won after it was evident that you didn't like the name... I care so much about you, but you never returned my feelings!" They were in the centre of the room, but none of them cared anymore – there was simply too much drama going on between them for people not to stare. Ron stared at her, open-mouthed. Merlin, what a mess he was in. Meanwhile, Hermione was sitting in an armchair by the fire, looking decidedly smug.
"What do you want from me?" continued Lavender. She shrieked when Ron shrugged at her. "Don't you lie to me, Ron Weasley – "
"Honestly, Lavender, let him breathe," Hermione said calmly from where she was sitting. "It's not anyone's fault but yours that he doesn't love you back."
Lavender had clapped a hand to her mouth, and Hermione was looking similarly surprised at her sudden outburst. Several people murmured from their armchairs. "Ooh, burn," Ron heard someone say.
At Hermione's words, Lavender was looking livid, more incensed than she already was. "What did you say?" she breathed softly, dangerously. Ron attempted to step away, but a flash of pink which was Lavender's arm gripped him tightly. Ron realised he had to say something quickly before all hell broke loose.
"Lav, I thought I loved you too," he said, "but there was just something you didn't have that left a gaping hole in me." Lavender looked at him, her breathing strangely loud in the silent room. The rest of the Gryffindors were watching the drama like they were actors in a play, faces tense, eyes wide, bodies leaning forward. "And now I realise what it is," he said guiltily, looking back and forth between the two girls who were glaring at each other, about to start a cat fight, "You're not Hermione, Lavender."
Lavender gave him a hurtful look, then left with an almighty sob, flouncing out of the room. Parvati Patil followed her, cooing nonsense that Ron couldn't understand. The people in the common room murmured for a while, but soon returned to their own conversations as if nothing had happened. Hermione, meanwhile, was staring at him. Brown eyes met sky blue.
"You said that just to break up with her, didn't you, Ron?" she said quietly. "Didn't you?"
It took a few seconds for him to answer. "No," he said, then he repeated his answer more defiantly, "No, I've known for a while, actually." He looked at her. "I've loved you for a long time."
Want more Romione? I personally recommend you Candy Floss: A Drabble Collection, a series of drabbles in which Hermione shows Ron the little wonders and pleasures of the Muggle world, starting with cotton candy. I Wonder Which Wonder Which is Which and The Surprise are personal favourites of mine.Alternatively, Take My Heart, Embers and/or Awkward are short Ron/Hermione oneshots I hope you will also enjoy.