Continuing Tales


A Harry Potter Story
by Alexis.Danaan

Part 11 of 26

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2 months, 1 week:

Hermione found herself sitting in front of the telly staring at the screen and wondering if she should owl Kingsley for a little piece work when the knock at her front door startled her. She turned and stared at it from over the back of her couch as if simply frowning at the wood would render it invisible and allow her to see who stood on the other side. When the knock came again she reluctantly stood up and, with a glance at Sebastian sleeping on his blanket next to her on the couch, warded the area so he couldn't fall off before she went to get the door. She was being paranoid, of course, because he couldn't even roll over onto his tummy yet, but she was taking no chances.

When she got to the door, she opened it a crack and at the first flash of red hair she thought to slam it closed—Ginny was the only Weasley who visited her and she always came through the Floo—until the head turned around and revealed Molly Weasley's warm, concerned brown eyes.

Part of her felt pathetic for hoping that it was Severus; she hadn't seen as much of him as she wanted to since he had kept to his weird routine of coming by after his shop closed. He only deviated in the fact that he no longer fought her on dinner and made sure to arrive a little earlier so that she wasn't waiting on him. Other than that he had been curiously distant with her and she often wondered if it was because he regretted saying 'yes' to her that day in his shop. Was it just because she had been emotional over Ron's cruel words? Or had he been emotional over them? She could never tell with him. She wanted to ask him but the same part of her that hoped it was him at the door even though he always Floo'd in felt that her pride could only take so much. When had she turned into such a coward?

Forcibly pushing the thoughts out of her mind, she opened the door wider and needlessly asked, "Molly?"

"I—Hello, dear," Molly said softly and Hermione was surprised by how swiftly the lump formed in the back of her throat.

"What are you doing here?" she asked, her voice a bit hoarse.

"I wanted to see how you were doing with the—the baby," Molly looked down at the handbag she clutched in front of her. "And I wanted to apologise for Ronald's behaviour towards you and S-Severus. I only just found out about what he did."

Hermione's heart clenched painfully in her chest but she didn't step back and invite the other woman in to her home. "It is not your place to apologise for Ron's actions, only he can do that," she said shakily. "The only apology I want from you is not one I'm sure you're willing to give."

Molly looked up at her, her eyes swimming in unshed tears but she didn't say anything.

"I needed you," Hermione said softly.

"I know," Molly said, her voice choked as the tears fell from her eyes. "I'm sorry. I'm so sorry. I don't—I can't justify—Hermione, I..."

She trailed off and Hermione felt herself relent a little. She stepped back. "Let's not have this discussion on the front step."

The older witch nodded and walked into the flat, hovering by the door as Hermione closed it. She only moved when Hermione did, following her down the hall and into the sitting room where the fireplace was cold and the telly still on. Hermione lifted the wards stopping anything from physically passing through them that were around her son and lifted his sleeping form gently off the couch. She felt the need to hold him while she had this conversation.

Hermione sat down with him, tucking his father's blanket loosely around them, and gestured with her head for Molly to take a seat at the other end of the couch. She sat stiffly, her coat still on and her purse in her lap as she stared at the little baby in Hermione's lap.

"I never thought I'd see you as a mother," she whispered. She seemed to realize that what she had said was odd and shook her head slightly, meeting Hermione's gaze. "Not that I didn't think you'd ever be a mother, I just never really thought about it. I never pictured it. suits you."

Hermione smiled slightly and looked down at her sleeping son.

"I would ask if the rumours are true about you and Severus but...I can see that they are," Molly said softly and when Hermione looked up, her eyes were back on Sebastian. "He even looks like him a bit, not that you can really tell this early on."

"Some of the rumours are true," Hermione said softly. "While I haven't heard most of them, I'd be willing to bet my Gringotts vault that the majority of them are wildly off the mark."

Molly nodded and they were both quiet for a long time, neither of them willing to break the silence. Hermione's head hummed things she wanted to say and ask but wasn't sure if she could; did she want the answers to the questions? She hadn't been able to do this with Severus, every time she thought she might her tongue failed her, but could she do it with Molly?

Swallowing hard, she forced herself to look up and ask the biggest, and hardest, question.


The silence was heavy and Hermione could see Molly physically swallow as if to prepare herself.

"I was angry with you, for putting yourself in this situation," she admitted quietly. "I was ashamed for you, and of myself. I know that it's no excuse but...I didn't know how to handle it and so I just...ignored it."

"But you didn't," Hermione insisted, trying to keep her voice calm. "You came here and you told me to marry the father of my baby, to fall in line with what was expected from me by complete strangers! I needed you in my corner, Molly!"

Sebastian stirred slightly at the sound of his mother's raised voice and she bit her tongue hard to stop herself from letting loose the torrent of painful words that wanted to spew forth.

"You were the closest thing I had to a mother in this world, a world that my real mother doesn't truly understand, and I need you to be there for me; instead you sided with them," she finished with a quiet intensity.

"And I don't completely disagree with them," Molly said softly, looking at Hermione sadly. "I know that it's...archaic. I know that the Muggle world is different and...and I support you, I do. I just...I was raised to believe certain things, Hermione, just the way you were and one of those is that a man should marry a woman if he gets her in the family way."

"And I can respect that that's your belief," Hermione said. There was no mistaking the bitterness in her voice despite her words. "I don't ostracise you because your belief is different from mine, I don't pressure you into accepting my belief, I still love you for who you are."

Molly's head snapped up and her eyes widened at Hermione's last words. "Do you think that I stopped loving you?" she gasped. "Hermione, I have loved you since you were a little girl."

"Actions speak louder than words," Hermione bit out, forcing her hands not to curl harshly around Sebastian's soft skin.

"They do," Molly agreed. "Why do you think I'm here?"

Before she could answer, the Floo activated in the cold grate, the fire springing up from nothing as both witches turned to look at the tall man who stepped through. Hermione's eyes darted up to the Muggle clock hanging on her wall and was shocked to find that it was Severus' usual time to arrive. She had lost track of time while watching the telly and even more so when Molly showed up.

"Oh," Molly gasped, her eyes growing impossibly wide before they darted to Hermione. "I didn't realize I would be interrupting."

"Molly," Hermione said tiredly, rubbing a hand over her face. "Whatever you're imagining, it's probably wrong." She could only just imagine what the older witch thought about Severus Flooing into her flat as if he owned the place; she was probably under the impression that they were living together, or at least having sex, and while neither of those were true she had to admit that she wasn't terribly opposed to the former and all for the latter.

"I recognize that," the older witch said, somewhat defensively. "Still, I should leave you two be."

Hermione made to get up and let her out but Molly waved her back down. "Sit, you don't want to wake him if you can avoid it. I doubt he's sleeping for very long periods yet, is he?"

"No," Hermione shook her head, sitting back down while Severus watched the two women silently. "I'm up about two or three times a night."

"I have a book that might help you with getting him back to sleep," Molly said. "It's quite old now, but I could send it to you if you would like?"

Hermione could see an olive branch being offered and she wavered. Her eyes darted to Severus, who was watching her quietly. She knew that he knew about the fact that the only Weasley speaking to her was Ginny, it was a hard fact to miss, and she wondered what he thought about it. She didn't know because she had never asked but watching him made her think of how much she had asked of him when she pled for his forgiveness—if he could try to get over that, surely she could get over this?

"That would be great," Hermione said, meeting Molly's eyes. "Thank you. Perhaps you could come over sometime this week? I've been wanting to ask someone about childproofing wards. Muggles have their own way but something tells me that a plastic gate is not going to stop Sebastian for long."

Molly smiled and Hermione could see a little bit of relief in it. "Of course, I'll owl you later to set it up," she said, turning to head back down the hall. She paused before she got there and looked back at Hermione and her son. "Sebastian is a beautiful name. How did you choose it?"

Hermione smiled and looked down at her lap. "I wanted a name that starts with an S," she admitted, peaking up at Severus whose eyes rested on his son, "and Sebastian was my favourite option." He looked completely flummoxed for a heartbeat when he met her eyes but the look was gone within seconds, replaced by his usual mask of indifference.

Molly smiled and nodded before she murmured a quiet goodbye and let herself out the front door. Hermione felt the wards shift as she passed over the threshold and knew that the older witch was gone.

"I'm afraid I let time get away from me, I have nothing planned for dinner," she admitted, slowly standing so as not to wake her son. "If you want to sit with him for a bit, I can whip something together for us."

"I can go back out and pick something up for you," he offered quietly, not quite meeting her eyes. She frowned and wondered at his strange behaviour—but then she had been doing nothing but that since Sebastian had been born. She was no closer to understanding the man than she had been two months prior.

"Mmm," she murmured, walking over to him and placing Sebastian in arms that were already forming a cradle. "As much as I'd probably kill for some curry right now, I'm not allowed to have it. Just sit down and relax, I won't take long."

Gently, she pulled her hands away, leaving Sebastian in his father's arms; she had to smile at how small her looked lying there. She glanced up at Severus and found him staring at her instead of the baby, which shocked her, because he usually only had eyes for his son when he first arrived. She smiled tentatively at him and, with how close they were, she couldn't resist leaning up on her toes and pressing a chaste kiss to his lips. When she pulled back his eyes were wide and she briefly wondered why he was so shocked that she would kiss him when she had openly told him that she wanted him. What did he think she had meant?

Grinning, she shook her head slightly and headed for the kitchen. She quickly whipped up an Alfredo sauce, boiled some pasta and threw in fresh broccoli so that she could feel less guilty about what a poorly balanced meal it was. She plated enough for both her and Severus and made her way into the sitting room only to find that the man in question had fallen asleep on the couch, Sebastian tucked into his side against the cushy armrest.

She grinned and sat down next to him, placing his food under a Stasis spell to keep it hot and fresh as she dug into her own. She couldn't help but feel that this was exactly how her evenings should end.


A Harry Potter Story
by Alexis.Danaan

Part 11 of 26

<< Previous     Home     Next >>