A/N : 1) This story is NOT epilogue compliant, i repeat it is NOT epilogue compliant.
2) Its purely family/ friendship and Romance. No Dark forces raising, no heroes and no particular villains, just people who make mistakes.
3) It is NOT necessarily OC centric! its based on the after war life of the Potters, Weasleys and Malfoys!
If you are still interested, please continue reading! Oh and i don't own HP, all credits to JK ~ Miia
Eighteen years had passed since the second wizarding war had been won and now, all these years later the casualties of those dark days had managed to build up their lives again. Kingsley had become the new minister of magic and for once the government was well efficient.
Hogwarts too had once again become the safe haven it had been and was led by the very capable headmistress Minerva McGonagall. The proud castle once against stood magnificently against the clear blue skies and the only symbol of the horrid war that had been fought there was a large marble headstone of sorts that had been built on the grounds with the names of all the slain warriors who were mourned till date.
The sun light gleamed against the white stone, the names carved into it glistening in gold and some tales of heroics were more popular than the others like that of James and Lily Potter, Sirius and Regulus Black, Nymphadora and Remus Lupin, Fred Weasley, Severus Snape and Alastor Moody to name a few.
But the name that was the most famous, the loss most mourned was perhaps the one added at the very end. The one that read….
Hermione Jean Granger
It had come as a rude shock when only after about a month of the victory, the world had woken up one day to hear the news of her death. Most couldn't believe it. She had just been offered a job as the second in command of the ministry of magical law under Amelia Bones, youngest witch ever to qualify for such a high post at the ministry, she was the brightest witch of her age, one third of the golden trio, the Gryffindor princess and so much more and yet they couldn't so much as recover her body.
A little away from the high marble stone, under the shadows of the forbidden forest staring at the name at the end was the witch herself.
Her eyes had travelled down the list of names, lingering on the familiar ones before settling on her own. She did not regret it, her choice of faking her own death was not something she would change even if she had the opportunity. Perhaps it was cowardly, perhaps it was something against her very nature to run away and hide but a small betrayal to her personality was worth the life she had now.
"It – its really you" A voice said from behind her and Hermione shook herself back to the present and turned to greet the person she had been waiting for.
"Neville" She said warmly as she turned around to face her friend again after eighteen years.
"You died, Harry saw you die…" Neville told her, all signs of his now stronger personality leaving him as he stared in awe and confusion at his first real friend.
"Harry saw what I wanted him to see" Hermione answered, a little sadly. This was not how she had wanted to begin her first real conversation with him.
"But I don't understand" Neville whispered. He had no idea why he was talking so softly but it was like seeing a ghost and he was afraid that if he did something, be too forceful then she would disappear.
Hermione sighed and ran a hand through her now softer curls as she studied Neville. He was the head of Gryffindor house now and was one of the most respected wizards in current day Britain. She was proud of how much he had achieved, how much he had changed from the scared, doubtful little person she had first met.
"It's a long story" She replied just as softly even as she noticed Neville studying her just as she had done him.
Hermione had always been pretty, Neville was one of the few who had acknowledged it even when she was a geeky teenager. At thirty six, she was more beautiful. Not stunning in the model sort of way, Hermione was never that gorgeous but there was more feminity in the way she now held herself. Dressed elegantly with simple accessories and looking much healthier than the last time, it was easy for Neville to tell that whatever she had been up to all these years she was happy and it was exactly that which made it hard for him to hold a grudge.
"We could talk at my office?" He suggested with a slight smile.
"Or down at the shack?" Hermione asked him, pointing in the direction of the willow.
He nodded and followed after her, walking silently as they headed to what was once the Marauders headquarters. Once inside the still shabby little shack, Hermione flicked her wand once, dusting off a little area for them to sit down.
It was there that the two friends remained for the better part of two hours as she explained everything that had happened in her life since she supposedly died. Neville never interrupted except for the one time when she told him what had originally made her leave the way she did.
She pacified him quickly and told him what he had already guessed. She was happy. She had absolutely no regrets in life. Neville calmed down quickly after that, he trusted her despite some of her choices being impossible for him to understand and was in the end glad.
"have you forgiven them?" Neville asked her after a long moment of silence.
"I don't hold any grudges" Hermione answered. She was over it, the incident was almost forgotten and locked up in some abyss of her brain but forgiveness…that wasn't something she was sure of.
"But you do not think they deserve to know?" Neville asked again and when Hermione remained silent, he pressed again "They mourned you, they still do. You know they never got over it. We never got over it Hermione"
"Maybe someday in the future Neville…" She answered hesitantly, her eyes fixed on his begging for understanding. He didn't but he accepted it. Perhaps it was fair he thought.
"Then what exactly brings you here?" Neville asked with a small smile, showing her that it was really okay. She sucked in a deep breath and then turned to look steadily at the floor.
"I need a favor" She answered, still not looking up.
"Anything Hermione" he answered quickly.
"My daughter turns eleven in three days" She told him almost nervously.
"And she is coming to Hogwarts?" Neville asked surprised. She jerked her head in a nod.
"There is a really good wizarding school in Australia but Hogwarts is still the best. We don't want our daughter to miss the best things in life because of our past" Hermione answered quietly.
Neville could tell that this decision had not been taken lightly and that there were still obvious doubts that lingered and he couldn't pretend like he didn't understand. It wouldn't be easy for any child of that linage to simply walk into Hogwarts but he knew now what Hermione was asking and in all honestly, he was glad to extend some help.
"She'll be welcome here Hermione" He assured as he placed a comforting hand on hers.
"Will she really? Can anyone look past her name Neville? Its been years but I don't know how much people have forgotten. She has never been to England before and her life in Australia has been good. We are not even sure if we should jeopardize her childhood this way but Hogwarts, its – we want her to –" Hermione struggled to explain and Neville had to grip her hand tighter to make her stop.
"I'll look out for her" he promised sincerely and her answering smile was dazzling.
"I don't know how to thank you Neville, after everything-" Hermione began again only to be silenced easily.
"You were my first friend here, my only friend for a very long time Hermione. I believe I can overlook everything else" He answered and she flung herself at him warmly.
"Thank you so much" She gushed and he could only smile in reply.
A/N : This story will be updated on alternate days until my other story is done after which i might choose to update everyday...Until then R&R!