Waking up- Chapter 6 - Touch
AO3 FFN Beginning of story | Previous Chapter word count 9064
Here is the second part of chapter 5- I split them because it was going LONG. So it's still Hermione's POV.
Previously in ‘Waking Up’:
Hermione gets ready for going out to a club & is anxious
She got ready w/ Fleur, Ginny, Angelina - Bonds w/ Fleur
Ron's not up for club either, but he does not reveal why
The entire group consists of the Weasley siblings (minus Percy), Lee, Angelina, Hermione, harry
It's a jolly good time despite ptsd acting up for Hermione- Until it's NOT a good time, and George grabs a mic and is threatening people with his wand.
cursing, intense emotions, drunkenness', fighting, reference to a dead character, somewhat explicit sex scene
CHAPTER 6- TOUCH
Panic seared through every nerve in her body. Ron was willfully standing in front of a sparking wand, and no one could do a thing to stop it - not legally anyway.
Ron stared the wand down, saying something she couldn’t hear from across the crowded bar, and the mic couldn’t pick up. She clawed her way out from the corner booth, waking Harry in the process, but by the time she’d crawled out from behind the table George’s wand arm had slowly fallen to his side.
“Fine... Fucking fine…” George’s voice echoed across the bar. “You’re all a bunch of useless arseholes.”
With that, George handed over the mic, escorted away with a bunch of people applauding as the music resumed. Ron, Angelina and Lee followed as the bouncer manhandled George then bodily dropped him off in a chair next to Ginny.
“When the tab is paid, get his arse out of here,” the bouncer growled at Ron before pointing a meaty finger at George. “He’s fucking banned.”
George handed over a wad of cash to Lee, who went to pay the tab.
All eyes turned to George.
“What?” He had a grin on his face, but his tone was sharp and eyes dead. “Did I say something that wasn’t true?”
“You said a lot, alright,” Angelina muttered. “You’re lucky Ron convinced them not to call Muggle law enforcement on you.”
George shot Ron a vicious scowl, but didn’t say anything. Ron had a carefully blank look on his face.
Lee returned from the bar, the bouncer behind him.
“Time we get going.”
They began their journey back to the hotel, pairing off, with the more sober partners keeping the more inebriated of their group from walking into traffic. Harry was ridiculously unsteady on his feet. Ginny couldn’t keep him upright and he nearly tripped over a passerby. Ron took over for Ginny, and Harry was very maudlin in his drunkenness.
“You’re my best friend,” he pronounced to Ron. “In the whole world, you know that?”
“Yep, thanks Harry.”
“You’re special. I know you sometimes don’t think you are, but you are. That locket didn’t know a thing.”
Hermione nearly tripped over, hearing the locket mentioned. She wasn’t sure what Harry meant, though. How could the locket have known anything? It was just an evil locket that drained people’s happiness and made them angry. It hadn’t shown any signs of sentience. Neither had the cup.
“Shut up, Harry” warned Ron, giving Harry a jostle.
“And sorry I love your sister. I couldn’t help it!”
She supposed the mention of the locket was just as nonsensical as everything else Harry was saying. She pulled Ron’s jacket that went nearly to her knees closer around herself, trying to ignore the ringing in her ears.
Ginny gave a laugh at Harry’s antics. She had drunk significantly more than Hermione, but somehow she wasn’t unsteady on her feet at all. Despite her amusement over Harry, Ginny’s eyes kept darting to George.
“Maybe we could dart into that corner shop, they’ll have booze,” George said, making a beeline that was curtailed by Ron leaving Harry at a lamppost and standing in his way.
“Let’s just get back to your hotel.”
“Fuck off, Ron! No one asked you!”
George had enough to drink to make him mean, and enough to nearly trip into the gutter. Ron caught him before he fell.
George bodily shrugged him off.
Hermione kept attempting to catch eyes with Ron, but he was too busy determinedly watching George and keeping Harry from walking into drainpipes.
They finally reached George’s hotel. He keyed them into his room then immediately sat on the bed, arms crossed as he glared out the window.
Ron deposited the unsteady Harry at the table, and Hermione happily took the other seat, her headache now piercing.
“I want to get out of here,” said Ginny as she leaned against a wall.
“Anyone sober enough to Apparate?” asked Angelina.
“I’m sober. I can side-along each of you where you need to go” said Ron, though he looked a bit peaky. “Then I can come back to stay with George.”
“I can stay here a bit longer to hang with George,” Lee said, a genial smile on his face that ignored the series of blanches after his comment. Not even the most drunk of them was under the impression he was staying just to hang out instead of monitor.
“I can stay too,” volunteered Angelina.
Ron shook his head. “You don’t have to. I know you both have work tomorrow.”
“That’s kind of you, Ron,” Angelina answered for them.
“Oh yeah, Ronnie the fucking hero” George groused, a mean look on his face.
“Damn, George,” said Lee with a shake of his head.
“I don’t need tending, and I don’t need you lot talking about me like I’m not here! I’m fine!”
“Look,” Ron began. “We both know—”
“Just what is it we both know?” asked George, rising from his bed.
“That you’re being an arsehole,” Ginny supplied, and no one corrected her.
“Well sorry I’m not all fun and fucking rainbows, everyone!” spat George, throwing his hands in the air.
“No one’s asking for that!” Ron protested. “We just don’t want you pissed and getting in trouble.”
“Oh give it a fucking rest,” George snapped, poking Ron in the chest.
Tents and rain and friends fighting filled Hermione’s mind. Her wand. She needed her wand! Hermione rifled through her beaded bag trying to find it.
“I’m tired of having you in my face all the time! I’ve never wanted you around before, so why the fuck would you think I want you around now? It’s like you enjoy being an annoying arsehole.”
“Oh yeah. I’m here for the enjoyment of it,” Ron said with a snort. “I get to keep my drunk older brother from getting arrested, keep him from eating shit in the gutter, and get treated like shit for it. A perfect evening, really.”
“I never asked for your help! I don’t want it!”
“Well someone has to pick up the pieces when you keep fucking up.”
“For fuck’s sake, get out of my room!” George bellowed, looking perilously close to punching Ron.
“No! I’m not letting you fuck up again!” Ron yelled back, red in the face. “After everything, it doesn’t matter if you’re an arse, family’s—”
Hermione’s hands shook as she scraped through the contents of her bag, unable to find her wand in the cavernous space. Useless. She was useless.
“Fuck off!” George seethed, looking like a cornered animal.
“No! After everything, family’s all we have and we have to be there for one another!”
“Like you were for Fred when he got fucking crushed to death?” George jeered. An explosion of protestations burst forth, but he ignored them all, eyes glinting in a mix of anger and anguish. He let out a horrible rough sound that bordered between laughter and crying.
Hermione desperately scrabbled in her bag, fingers grazing everything but her damned wand!
“Why couldn’t that wall have fallen a few feet to the left and taken you out instead of Fred?”
There was a crash and Harry’s chair was on the floor he had stood up so abruptly.
“Don’t you talk to him like that!’ Harry cried out, moving toward George, his wand pulled. Angelina and Lee quickly got in his way, as Ron stood still, and his expression shuddered.
Something like regret flickered across George’s face. He took a step towards his brother, but gave a yell as an orange curse hit him and he stumbled back into the bathroom.
All faces turned to the source of the spell. There stood Ginny, cold fury burning in her eyes. She gave another wave of her wand that slammed the door shut.
“Ginny, you can’t do magic outside of school yet!” Hermione squealed, fingers finally grasping her wand, though far too late to be of any help.
“Worth it,” replied Ginny. Hermione couldn’t very well disagree. She’d never thought she could dislike George Weasley so much. “Let’s get out of here. I can’t stand to look at him.”
Ron gave a sigh, and leaned his head against the bathroom door frame. “I guess I need to get you all home, then I’ll come back and— ”
“No, I’ll stay here.” Angelina put a staying hand up. “He’s been a right bastard to you and you don’t have to put up with it.”
“We’ve got him,” said Lee, putting a hand on Ron’s shoulder. Ron opened his mouth as if to argue, then gave a sigh.
“And you’ll make sure he doesn’t do anything?”
“Then… Then I’ll get everyone home.”
One by one Ron apparated Harry, Ginny and Hermione home - he was too tired to apparate multiple people at a time reliably. They silently walked from their apparition point to the Burrow’s living room.
Ron busied himself pouring glasses of water for them, while the rest of them watched. Harry looked baleful, but was unable to say anything and Ginny was silently crying. This left Hermione, and she felt woefully underqualified to even begin to breach the hurt Ron had faced. The one solace was that Harry and Ginny seemed equally unable to come up with comforting words to say to Ron.
Ron saved Harry and Ginny the trouble by dismissing them to bed.
Harry tottled over to Ron and gave him a long-lasting hug mumbling something about him being Harry’s brother. Ginny gave him a hug about the middle as well, before helping the still wobbly Harry up the stairs to bed.
Ron let out a sigh and collapsed on the couch.
“Next time I’m tempted to go out, remind me of tonight,” he muttered, throwing an arm across his face. “Especially if there’s George and drinking involved…”
His breathing shook the tiniest bit.
She’d never been very good at emotions. Her own would take over and she’d let her temper turn her into a veritable harpy. Other people’s emotions were just as difficult for her to handle. She worked so hard to learn to say the right thing, find what could soothe others, to apply logic and repeat the process. It never seemed to work, though. She couldn’t think of anyone she’d successfully talked down or comforted in her life. Not really…
She settled beside him and put her head on his chest.
“I know you’re upset…” she began. Acknowledging feelings was usually a good place to begin. That’s the sort of thing Ron might say, right? “But you have to know George didn’t mean any of that.”
He ruefully shook his head. “He did… It’s fine, though. Nothing I didn’t know.”
“He was just trying to get rid of you by being cruel. He was drunk and being spiteful,” she said with certainty.
“Doesn’t mean he was lying.”
“You handled this all really well, you know.”
“Huh?” he asked, removing his arm from over his eyes.
“You deescalated things really well, watched after us, and kept your calm… It was rather impressive.”
“Yeah, well I’ve had my fair share of dealing with dramatic wizards and witches,” he said with a hint of a smile, giving her a bit of a nudge.
“Oh we’ve never been that bad!” she said with a laugh.
He cocked his head at her. “The birds.”
“Well… Well, you were being a right arse,” she said, poking him in the middle.
“See? I’m quite used to the drama,” he said with a chuckle, draping his arm around her.
She bit her lip. “I wasn’t that bad was I?”
“You were pretty terrible,” he said with a laugh. “But that’s alright. I like how fierce and crazy you are.”
“Oh sorry, I mean how calm and undramatic you are.” He schooled his face into mock solemnity.
“You’re terrible,” she huffed.
“Yeah, but you love it,” he said, shooting her that boyish grin of his. It was her favorite feature of his. Well, that and his blue eyes. And his bright hair. And his freckles. And his wide shoulders. And his long legs. And his big hands. And his arse.
With that thought, she sat up and put a hand to his face and his eyebrows shot up into his fringe.
“I can’t help it, but I really do,” she said, leaning in to give him a quick kiss on the nose. “You know… Harry pointed out that you fancy me.”
“He’s a terrible drunk.”
“I told him I quite fancy you as well.”
“I would hope so, seeing as you’re my girlfriend.” His arm hugged her close to his side. “And even if he’s a terrible drunk, he’s right. I do fancy you. Rather hard not to, what with you being all brilliant and beautiful.”
Her eyes fell to his lips. This wasn’t the ideal place to kiss, in his family’s living room where anyone could walk in on them… but he’d called her beautiful and he was being so perfect. She didn’t want him to think about George again either.
She maneuvered herself until she was on top of him, knees on either side of his hips. One of his hands wove through her curls, the other doing a little trail down her side, a gesture that was growing more and more familiar each time they snogged. A hot neediness fed her movements. She moaned and leaned into him when she was stopped. His hands cupped her cheeks and slowly moved her face away from his.
“We’re in the living room,” he murmured.
“It’s late - so late that no one will know. Just snog me!” she whispered.
“Are you still sauced?” he laughed.
“Do I have to be ‘sauced’ to want to kiss you with a tiny bit of tongue?”
“Well I’d hope not, but any sober person should know this house always has someone up and in our business…”
“I’m sober now,” she told him frankly, feeling the slightest tinges of a hangover, but otherwise feeling very much herself. She gave a sigh and extricated herself from him. “You have a point about the lack of privacy, but I’ll have you know it’s highly unfair to call me beautiful and not allow me to snog you a bit.”
“Oh is that all it takes?” He had a pleased grin on his face.
“Well it’s definitely not your stellar personality,” she said with a teasing smile of her own.
“Of course not. It’s my gentlemanly ways.”
He bowed very low and she gave a much-too-loud laugh as he took her hand. He leaned down, blue eyes gleaming into hers, then gave her knuckle a lick.
“You wanted a tiny bit of tongue, so I gave you tongue!” he grinned, before dimming the lights and leading her up the stairs.
They stopped in front of Ginny’s bedroom and touched foreheads.
“I know tonight was… was difficult,” she said in a low voice, “but when it wasn’t… I really did have a good time with you.”
He shifted his head and kissed her forehead.
“I did too,” he murmured, giving her a soft smile. “Goodnight.”
“Goodnight,” she whispered, putting her hand on the handle to turn it when it slipped in her grasp. She tried again, but it wouldn’t budge. “She must have forgotten and locked it...”
She gave a light knock on the door, and Ginny didn’t answer. There was nothing but silence.
“Oh you’ve got to be kidding…”
“What?” Hermione asked, trying the door again.
Ron did a few spells and gave a huff.
“Harry’s in there,” he said, disgusted.
“What? No… They wouldn’t… Would they?”
“I’d bet fifty galleons Harry’s in that bloody room.”
“Oh…” she replied, putting her fingers to her pursed lips. “I suppose I’ll stay in Percy’s room then?”
“Nah, you can come to bed with me.”
He walked towards the stairs before coming to a stop.
“Okay…” he said, turning on his heels, a panicked look on his face. “I didn’t mean to assume— You definitely don’t need to—”
“Yes!” she whispered back.
Ron looked only mildly less panicked at her answer.
“Yes like you’re agreeing you don’t need to come with, or yes like—”
“Yes, like I’ll stay with you.”
A thrill ran through her as they smiled at one another, the bit of moonlight shining through the window illuminating them. As they went up the stairs together excitement flooded her thoughts of sharing a room overnight with Ron. She’d shared the tent with him, but they’d never truly been alone all night, and they definitely hadn’t been under the scrutiny of Mr and Mrs Weasley.
She’d never been one for rule breaking. Well, that wasn’t quite true. Okay, she had to admit she broke rules rather regularly. She might have broken about a thousand rules in the last year alone, but that was different— it was for a just cause that would help everyone. In this case it was purely breaking rules for her own happiness. The rush of it made her feel the same peace she’d had at the club.
The moment they got to Ron’s room and saw Harry’s empty camp bed she approached Ron to kiss him. Only a meter away, he let out a large yawn before going to his drawers.
“Here you go,” he said, handing her an oversized orange shirt. It had the Cannons logo on it and was soft to the touch from so many wearings. She’d seen him wear it probably a thousand times. It was rather sweet that he’d thought of pajamas for her, but disappointment began to well in her. She wasn’t sure what she’d hoped for, but something closer to their activities at the shed was what she’d imagined. “Do you need some shorts or something for the bottoms?”
“No, I think your shirt will do,” she said as she held it up and realized it went halfway down her legs.
“Right,” he said with a grin, “Well, I can step out while you change.”
“You can stay here,” she said. She felt a fluttering in her stomach as his eyes shot back to hers.
“Oh, erm… Alright,” he said, his pink tongue darting out to lick his lips. “Right! Yeah…”
He turned about, head pointed up towards the low ceiling.
She let out a nervous giggle and changed out of her dress into the dress-length shirt. She did a silencing charm on the room, for good measure.
“You can turn around now.”
He turned around and looked at her with a soft smile.
“Nice to see you supporting the Cannons!” His eyes fasted on the logo with a growing grin before his eyes went wide and met hers. She looked down and realized it was very apparent she wasn’t wearing a bra in the thin shirt. He went back to his drawers and found a pair of pajama trousers for himself.
“Do you need me to turn around for you to change?” she asked.
“Up to you, really,” he said with a shrug, beginning to unbutton his shirt. She chose to watch him from the bed, enjoying how a tinge of red blossomed across his cheeks and ears. As he finally got to his belt and jeans he turned himself around.
She liked watching him like this. She’d never had the chance to unabashedly watch him before. They’d changed clothes on the run, but it had always been practical fast movements. She liked looking at his shoulders that were rather wide despite his thinness, and the glorious spattering of freckles that were most concentrated across his shoulders. He pulled the pajama trousers up over his plaid boxers then did a cute little hop to arrange himself. She liked the taper of his waist, and wanted to see if it was as enticing from the front. Watching him made her forget to breathe; forget to do much of anything.
She wasn’t sure when she’d stood from the bed, but her feet made a beeline to him. As soon as he turned she surged forth, that same neediness from the sofa fueling her movements. She jumped straight up into his arms making him let out a deep ‘oompf!’ She worried for a moment that she might have hurt him, jumping on him as she did, but reassurance came as he sighed into their kiss. They moved against each other in the middle of the room, the lamp casting shadows across the orange room creating the effect it was on fire.
It was a bit of a messy snog, but she didn’t care as he pulled her into a hard embrace. His tongue traced the inside of her mouth, and she slid both of her hands into his hair, enjoying the feel of his soft strands running through her fingers. They continued to kiss as their feet stumbled back until Ron’s legs hit the bed and the two fell to it with a laugh. The spell she’d done on the bed to widen the bed earlier that day had held up, giving them plenty of room to twine around one another and kiss. She reminded herself to reinforce the hastily done spell later, otherwise they might end up with one of them on the floor— but she decided it was better to put it off and not interrupt a perfect series of kisses.
Since she was about thirteen she’d wondered what kissing Ron Weasley would be like. Her earliest fantasies were delicate and chaste like she’d seen in movies. Later they became more heated and sensuous, but she’d had so little experience with kissing she wasn’t sure what she preferred their kisses to be, really, as long as it was with Ron.
Their first kiss had seared through her as he lifted her up off the ground. The second time he’d been tender and unhurried. She’d stopped counting their kisses, but each time it was perfect, whatever surprise he brought her way.
Now that they were on the bed his lips were soft. He’d started slow, lazily exploring her as if savoring each moment, his kiss a gentle caress that reeled her in, peppering in a tiny nibble here or there.
“Wait,” he murmured sitting up. “You’re sure you’re sober?”
“Yes,” she answered. Her fingers grazed down him, savoring the lean muscles, how very smooth his skin was until the lines she drew reached an errant scar he’d earned over the years. One of his hands began to trail up her hip, just managing to skim underneath the overly large shirt. The pad of his thumb was drawing slow circles that just tickled the bottom of her ribs.
Soft, hungry kisses were travelling down her neck. She moaned as he met the juncture between her shoulder and neck. Through half closed eyes she watched the lamplight make his hair spark with amber and copper and gold. Her fingers played with his hair as that thumb of his kept its path up her shirt, and she felt a molten heat forming within her at the sensation.
Then the hand travelled low again, fingers just skimming the side of her hips and then the elastic of her pants. She let out a sigh and adjusted her hips towards him.
“You can touch me,” she breathed.
He let out a low moan. His long fingers ghosted over her pants until one gave a hesitant stroke over the warmth between her legs. One finger became two as he stroked against her, and arousal began to pool for her in a way she’d never felt before. It was such a small amount of friction, but it made her head spin.
Ron was touching her. She always revered the little touches they shared— his hand on her hip, his forehead touching hers, his hand around her wrist— but this was something wholly new.
The fingers moving against her, combined with his lips sucking on neck, made the heat deliciously build. As he curled his fingers she found the need to pull him in closer. It wasn’t enough! She wanted to feel him on her, not through a wet scrap of fabric.
She let her hands travel from his silky hair down to the elastic of her pants and began to push them down.
He stopped and looked into her eyes with a questioning look. She nodded and he hooked his fingers on them and trailed them down her legs before discarding them.
He gave an appreciative hiss before smiling up at her.
“Fuck me, you’re pretty,” he said under his breath. Her cheeks burned, but not as much as the heat growing inside her as his hands trailed their way back to her. His fingers traced up her legs, just barely pressing their way into her flesh, before resting directly between her legs. He seemed to be looking at her with fascination, and the idea of him looking at her down there suddenly made her nervous. She gently guided his head up to her so they could kiss while his hand continued to explore. She gave a gasp as he managed to find her clit.
He held himself above her with one hand as the other brushed inside her, teasing wetness from her and making her feel light-headed. She guided his hand back up her shirt, to feel his hand graze her breast.
She wanted more of him. She wanted him against her. In a daring move, she hooked her feet behind his hips and crashed his hips into hers.
He let out a startled yell before the bed gave a large lurch and Ron’s left hand that had been bracing him above her went clear through the mattress, sending him rolling off her and crashing to the ground.
The bed gave another shutter, and the bed, which Hermione had spelled to a queen size mattress, gave a spasm before shrinking to its normal twin size.
“Sorry! I should have reinforced that spell! I’m sorry!” she cried out, sitting up to check on Ron. He let out a series of ‘fuck fuck fuck’s under his breath as he slowly got to a crawling position, though not putting much weight on the left hand that had gone through the bed.
“Are you okay?” she asked, putting a hand to his back.
His whole back tensed and he scrunched his eyes closed.
“Ron?” she asked, rubbing his back a bit. “You okay?”
“Don’t,” he said, jerking away and giving a shake of his head.
He gave a hiss as he slowly rotated his left arm and flexed his hand. His shoulders were drawn so high they almost touched his ears before they slumped.
“Is your wrist hurt?”
“Huh?” he dazedly asked, blinking a few times and sitting up. “‘M okay.”
She nodded before grabbing her wand from the nightstand.
“Let me see your wrist.”
He held it to his chest. “Why?”
She gave a roll of her eyes. “To fix it, of course.”
He gave a flex of his hand before sitting up on his feet and slowly extending his wrist to her.
She took hold of it and gingerly weighed it back and forth. “So you landed on it?”
“I guess,” he said unhelpfully.
He held his breath as she held up her wand and did an ‘Episkey’ charm on it.
“Better?” she asked, knowing she’d done it perfectly.
He flexed his wrist and gave her a tight smile. “Yeah, I imagine that did it.”
She felt a flicker of doubt. “It’s better, isn’t it?”
“Course it is. You always do spells perfectly,” he said with a roll of his eyes. She began to frown. He hadn’t answered the question. “Hermione, I’m fine. I just feel a bit off after falling face first onto my manky floor. Who knows what filth I might have landed in. At least it wasn’t Harry’s old pants or something.”
She gave a laugh.
“You should come back to bed.”
“It’ll be a tight fit,” he said, eyeing the small twin.
“Oh yes… Wait! Bring Harry’s camp bed over. I think the spell will last better if we’re merely transforming two beds into one, instead of extending one.”
He grabbed the bed, and removed all the sheets. With a few flicks of her wand she was again in a large queen bed. She realized she was still nude underneath his large shirt, and the lingering arousal hadn’t fully been chased away by his fall.
“Where were we?” she said, rather seductively she thought, which both impressed and surprised her. She’d never been very good at anything remotely close to sexiness, but she’d managed a rather saucy husky tone.
He gave a bit of a gulp and turned off the lamp before joining her in the bed. As her eyes adjusted, the moonlight illuminated them well enough to just be able to make out his features.
She began to kiss him again, trying to rekindle the fire they’d had a moment ago, but he felt stiff and unresponsive.
“Is your wrist still hurting?” she whispered.
“No, I’m fine,” he said, taking a breath before their kiss resumed. He began trailing kisses down her neck and skimming her sides as before, and she tried to feel that same fire. His hands were touching her in the same places, but there was a forced quality to every move and every kiss. Their bodies no longer coaxed and set pace with one another.
His fingers went back to between her legs and poked at all the wrong angles. It felt like he was trying to pick a lock with a pair of chicken drumsticks. He’d always had very short nails, so she was surprised when they seemed to be poking her instead of the pads of his fingers.
Then he stopped kissing her altogether and went lower until his head was even with her pelvis.
She wasn’t entirely comfortable with the idea of him looking down there. She’d barely ever looked down there, but didn’t imagine this could be a very flattering angle. At least it was dark in the room now?
He poked and prodded and she felt thoroughly turned off when one digit poked far too hard to the side of her labia.
“Erm… Maybe a little higher?” she asked, hoping he’d go back to her clit.
She gave a jolt as his nails showed up again. That was even worse! And how was that even possible when they were so short?
She accidentally let out a huff and he gave a sigh.
“This isn’t doing anything for you, is it?”
“It was…” The silence carried on, and she found herself entirely without words.
“It was rubbish,” he supplied.
“No?” she squeaked, biting her lip. He gave a withering look up through his eyebrows. “I’m sorry! It was really good earlier, though!”
He gave a snort. “Yeah I could tell it wasn’t going well when you weren’t as wet anymore…”
She pressed her face into the crook of her elbow to hide her eyes. It had seemed sexy at the time, but him actually saying out loud that she was ‘wet’ was absolutely mortifying.
“It really isn’t a problem,” she mumbled.
“Yeah it is,” he said, laying beside her, elbow on her pillow. He slowly turned her face towards his, blue eyes boring into hers. His eyebrows lifted and a small smile twitched, but not enough to bring out his dimple. “Let’s start again.”
“I don’t know…” she said, not sure she wanted to have him poke at her like that again.
“Let’s try again. If you want me to stop at any point I will.”
She looked into his eyes and saw a glint of determination in them she’d seen before. He made that face when he made the right move in chess, when he was about to save a goal, and when he was about to pull off a powerful spell. When he looked like that, nothing much could go wrong.
She gave a nod. It seemed too absurd to be shy, but she felt it burn through her as his hand cupped her cheek and brought her in for a languorous kiss.
A chasm of intimacy burst open as his lips burned against hers. As she surrendered to his kisses, she became increasingly conscious of his body, hot and hard against hers. His fingers slowly slid down the narrow of her waist, then edged behind and found her bare backside. He moaned into their kiss as he massaged it, almost as if testing the globe in his hand. Whatever awkwardness that had descended on them was gone, and her body molded to his.
With every kiss she felt marked as his, and she grasped his hair again. Only moonlight lit him, but she imagined the riotous color of his hair sunning her as she basked in his attention.
He stroked her between her legs again, this time finding a rhythm that made her hips jolt to meet him. The oversized shirt had ridden up past her breasts, uncomfortably bunching until she impatiently tore the shirt off over her head. He let out a rough groan and his hands and mouth stopped.
He pulled back a bit and stared at her nakedness.
She had the overwhelming impulse to reach for the sheet and cover herself, but resisted it. She held her breath as he silently stared, expression annoyingly enigmatic.
“W-well?” she let out, nerves making her voice pitch up. She was skinny, but still managed to have a bit of a tummy, and her breasts weren’t all that much to talk about, and her hips were too wide, and—
“Hermione,” he breathes out her name. “You’re the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen.”
She turned her head away. She wasn’t. Then his mouth was on hers again, and hands were exploring her breasts. His kisses trailed to the crook of her neck, to her clavicle then finally down her chest.
“Christ, you’re perfect. Fuck…” he said, almost to himself as he leaned down and took one of her nipples into his mouth, the other hand squeezing and kneading her breast.
He backed away to look at her again. The way he beheld her, she could almost believe she was beautiful and perfect. He had nothing but adoration in his eyes as his lips fell to her body. He trailed down her, as fingers grazed a hot trail, and made desire pool in her.
He went further down and her legs fell open to him. His fingers explored her, but this time they easily found a path that made her moan. He set a rhythm, and experimented with angles. She glanced down to see he was avidly watching her face, like he would a chess board. Eyes on her, he leaned forward.
It began with a tentative lick while a pair of knuckles just grazed her in the right spot. He continued to do this and she threw her head back in a gasp. Then his lips dipped between her legs and began to suck at her clit. She let out a long whimper as he continued to alternate between lapping at her and sucking at her like she was a final meal. Heat and slickness built in her, making her tilt her hips into him, punctuating her gasps with jerks of her hips.
She was on the edge of falling, when he found the perfect rhythm and stayed there. Quick susurrations on her clit, and his fingers just barely grazing inside her, teasing and nearly fucking into her, made the coil inside her finally spring.
A heady ‘don’t stop!’ barely made it out of her lips before she let out a sound like a sob as she came. She felt the spasm of it rip through her, and she clutched the pillow around her as her hips stuttered and followed his mouth, continuing to twist as his fingers slowed down.
She panted and shook her head as her thighs wobbled and finally relaxed, dropping her hips further into the mattress.
“Oh God…” she whimpered. “Fuck… Oh god…”
Her mind had never been more of a void. She was utterly shattered. There was nothing but sensation, still floating in aftershocks.
“You alright?” came a hoarse voice from between her legs.
She let out a rough laugh, then managed to open an eye from between her curls.
“I’m… I just…” she gasped and shuddered a bit.
“Better?” he asked, knowing perfectly well that he’d done amazing.
“Yeah, I imagine that did it,” she panted, mirroring his words from earlier. “I think we ought to thank Harry in the morning.”
“Do you really need to bring up that specky git right now?” he moaned, kissing the inside of her thigh.
“Well, if it weren’t for him taking up Ginny’s room, I wouldn’t have gotten to experience… That!” she said with a shaky gesture.
“Took a bit, but I think I did alright in the end,” he said, a tired grin on his face as he wiped his mouth.
“More than alright!” she proclaimed. She looked further down the bed and saw he was still hard. She was so flushed and buzzing she wasn’t sure she had the ability to blush. “If you want, I can try to return the favor?”
Ron blanched and shifted his hips.
“It’ll go away on its own,” he said with another kiss to her thigh. She didn’t bother masking her confusion. Didn’t teenage boys always want to ‘get off’? Was he so disgusted from going down on her that he didn’t want her touching him?
As if reading her thoughts, he continued. “It’s late and I want to be able to dream about that look on your face when you came. Fuck me, that was the hottest thing ever.”
He kissed her stomach right below her belly button then finally, wobblingly, crawled further up her body before collapsing beside her and kissing her. “I’ll definitely take a rain check though.”
“I’m knackered. Dreams of me making Hermione Granger cum are all I need,” he hummed as he nuzzled up behind her. “I could get used to this.”
“So could I!” she said with a laugh. “I should clean up.”
“Nooo, just stay a little longer,” he whined, wrapping an arm around her middle and bringing the blankets onto them. Minutes passed. She wiggled in place as his breathing slowed.
“Just need to grab my wand.”
“Hmnnn,” he grunted into her side as she pulled her wand from the side table and did a quick clean up. She Accioed her shirt over, but had no way of putting it on without moving Ron.
“Ron?” she whispered. A small snore erupted in her ear and she sighed.
Dressing in the morning wasn’t the worst thing. Plus, she was draped in Ron, cozied up more intimately than she’d ever imagined she could be. His whole body radiated a comforting warmth, and in that one moment she felt more safe and contented than she had in years. Suddenly words she’d been achingly trying to keep at bay began to bubble up to the surface.
He continued to snore.
In the safety of the darkness, in his arms, and without having to worry about his reaction, she whispered, “I love you.”
She only got snores in return, but there was a sort of relief in having said it out loud. Any tension left in her body dissipated, and he felt so nice spooned up against her that she felt her eyes drift close for just a moment.
* * *
She woke to the sound of apparition and a, “Ron, your mum is— oh shit! Sorry! Shit!”
Dazedly she shook her head at Harry’s cursing then, horrified, remembered her state of undress. Ron hadn’t forgotten and quickly yanked the quilt up to her nose.
“Shut it, Harry! Do you want Mum to hear you?” Ron hissed.
“Right, sorry!” he said, turning around with his back to them. He stood in only his boxers, hands clutching his clothes from the night before. “Erm… So, your Mum was waking everyone since it’s a bit late, and I fell asleep in Ginny’s room, and your Mum didn’t catch me, but I wanted to let you know in case… Well, in case of this, I guess.”
As he explained, a currant-faced Hermione yanked the Cannons shirt on and looked for her pants.
“And the best way to warn us was to Apparate directly in here to the foot of my bed?” Ron exclaimed, before reaching down to the foot of the bed and handing Hermione her pants.
“Yeah, well I am a mite bit hungover…”
“I’d tell you where some hangover potion is, but I don’t think you deserve it,” Ron replied, giving Hermione a peck on the cheek. “Alright we’re all decent now.”
“I’m really sorry!” said Harry, rubbing at his head. At first it looked like a tick of embarrassment, but he looked haggard enough that a hangover seemed the bigger culprit. “Er, where’s my bed?”
“It’ll be in the chicken coop if you do that again,” answered Ron.
Hermione finally gathered enough wits to grab her dress and say “I’ll meet you later,” and Apparated as silently as she could to Ginny’s room.
“There you are!” Ginny said, pulling on a pair of jeans. “Mum’s trying to get everyone up since it’s so late, and she almost put together where everyone stayed. Did Harry warn you?”
“If by warn me, you mean Apparate into the room and catch me completely starkers, then yes, he did an admirable job!”
“He did what?” Ginny roared with laughter. “Well I’m glad someone had a good time last night!”
“I mostly kept Harry from getting sick down the side of my bed. Though he did say he loved me, which was quite nice,” she said, a love-sick smile on her face.
Hermione still hadn’t heard anything like that from Ron. He hadn’t even wanted her to touch him.
“I can’t believe he Apparated in there,” Ginny continued. “I told him to do it outside the door! We heard Mum bustling about and he was rather panicked at the idea of her being mad with him.”
“Ginnyyy,” Hermione moaned and hid her face behind her hair.
“You know what? I don’t want to know,” said Ginny, running a brush through her long red hair. “Actually I do, but I think you’ve been through enough embarrassment for one morning. I’m going to go play some Quidditch, if Harry can get his act together. Want to come?”
Avoiding the house seemed a pleasant application of her time, but a quick glance to her book bag shuttered any thought of having a lark. She’d had her fun the night before, though she hadn’t earned it. She’d had enough avoiding. She needed to make plans for her parents.
* * *
It was arduous and barely fruitful, but at least she could say she’d put some thought into it, creating a schedule of places to visit over the next week to gather all the information she might need and who to glean it from. When she looked at the clock it was well past one in the afternoon.
At the Burrow it was unusual to go so late in the day and not be disturbed. She also hadn’t seen Ron since the fiasco that morning. The embarrassment seemed a perfect punishment for being so self indulgent. It was hard to believe she’d let herself fall asleep nude in his bed. She’d been so relaxed and…
“Oh!” Hermione gasped.
She hadn’t remembered to put up her silencing spell. Had she needed it? Had she woken up in the night? Perhaps there was a way to subtly ferret the information from Ron. Maybe she could bring it up at lunch. It was a bit late for it, but people always poked their head in when a meal was being served, so it must not have happened yet.
Despite having much more to do, she had to admit she needed food, or at least some strong tea, if she was to continue.
She went down the stairs to find the kitchen in uncharacteristic disarray. Bowls, trays and cutting boards littered every surface, but at the dining table was a very delicious looking feast of jacket potatoes with every sort of topping one could imagine all arranged in little ramekins.
“I bet there’ll be something to eat,” she heard Ginny’s voice carrying in from outside. She and a windblown Harry came in through the garden door. Her hair hung in an enviable curtain of beachy waves Hermione could never manage without bottles of Sleekeazy's.
“This looks a treat, doesn’t it?” said Ginny, going to sit at the table. “Well, let’s get Mum and Ron here so we can dig in!”
Just then Ron came down the stairs wearing one of Mrs Weasley’s patterned aprons that was dwarfed by his tall frame.
“Did you cook this?” Harry asked, looking impressed.
“Yeah… Mum’s been in her bedroom again,” he replied.
They all knew that meant she was distressed and had holed herself in her bedroom. Those had been coming with fewer and fewer days between them, and Hermione had to wonder what had caused it this morning.
“Why’d you go to such trouble? We have stuff for sandwiches,” Ginny asked, mood forcibly upbeat.
“I was hoping to tempt Mum out of her bedroom.” Ron sat out napkins and cutlery, slapping the metalware onto the table with more force than was necessary.
Harry and Hermione’s eyes met.
“We might want to clean off the kitchen counters, then,” said Ginny with a grin. “Looks a bit like a mad potion maker's laboratory.”
“You clean ‘em off, then, I’m famished.”
“I can clean them off,” Hermione volunteered, hoping to cut the tension, and Harry joined her in the effort, saying, “I’ll help.”
“The food’s all ready now— just leave it!” Ron protested.
“It’ll only take a moment,” said Hermione.
“Plus you didn’t make the mess, Ron did,” Ginny unhelpfully added.
“Oh fine!” growled Ron, and with a swish of his wand the items on the counter rushed their way to the sink with a great clatter, the metal cooking sheets causing a crash that reverberated around the room making everyone jump, and give small yells in succession. “There! Happy? It’s in the sink! Now will you all sit?”
“Merlin, Ron! Did you have to be so loud with it?” Ginny hollered, getting from her seat to get the rest of the dishes by hand. “What's gotten into you?”
“I just want people to eat the bleeding food! It took forever to make and it’s like herding a bramble of gnomes getting you lot to sit down and eat it all at once. No wonder Mum was always upset with us!” Ron groused. “I’m going to get her from upstairs, and when I get back, you lot better be seated at the table and piling up your potatoes!”
He stormed up the stairs, rattling the framed photos on the walls.
“You know, I always thought if one of us was to turn into Mum it’d be me, but I think Ron’s got it cornered. Did you see him, hands on his hip just like her!” Ginny snorted, miming Ron’s akimbo stance, and Hermione gave a reluctant laugh in turn.
As much as his dark mood made her worry, she did enjoy watching Ron doing little domestic things around the house. There was something rather charming seeing the overgrown young man in a flowery apron in a tither about everyone sitting down to eat.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if he takes up knitting soon. What do you think, Harry?”
Ginny looked beyond Hermione and her face fell. Hermione turned to see Harry was sitting stock-still, wand tightly gripped in his hand. Hermione instinctively grabbed her wand. A shiver spread up the back of her head.
“You okay?” Ginny asked.
“Trays were loud, that’s all.” Harry’s eyes weren’t trained on any of them and he gave a stiff sort of shrug.
“Harry…” Ginny began, coming near him, but Harry shook his head.
“M’going outside,” he muttered before bolting out the door.
“Where’s he going?” Ron asked as he emerged from the stairs, looking cross.
“Your banging about with the trays set him off,” Ginny spat, going for the door.
Ron cursed before running ahead of her to the door.
“I’m the one who messed up, I’ll fix it,” he said, taking off his apron. “You two eat up. And Mum was asleep still, so I left her to it. Put some food aside for her and Harry with a warming charm, would you?”
He didn’t wait for a response before going out the door. Ginny silently gathered together full plates for Harry and her mother, getting a third one for Ron, though he hadn’t asked her to.
“I— I can’t do the warming charm… Still sixteen... Hermione would you?”
Hermione dutifully did so, making sure not to look as Ginny wiped at her eyes and gave a sniff. The redhead went to the sink and started furiously scrubbing at some trays.
“Shouldn’t we eat?”
“What’s the point?” Ginny sniped, slamming a dirty set of tongs into the sink. “Ron wants us to all sit down and eat like things are normal, but they aren’t and I don’t know when they will be. Mum’s only up for a few hours at a time, Ron’s the one making food, Harry’s going off from loud noises, and George…” Ginny shook her head. “I just want… I thought after everything we could find some happiness, but it’s just impossible.”
“You did find some happiness earlier, though, didn’t you? Playing Quidditch a bit with Harry?” said Hermione, feeling every inch a fraud trying to buoy anyone's spirits.
Ginny blushed a bit as she began scrubbing a pan. “We didn’t exactly get to the Quidditch part…”
“I suppose that’s all we can do right now, little pieces of happiness like that.”
The two girls cleaned the kitchen in silence until it gleamed. They dutifully ate their lunches, looking to the door every few minutes for the boys to return. Hermione was able to get away with eating very little thanks to Ginny’s distraction, and managed to vanish the contents of her plate before Harry and Ron returned, both looking rather pale, but Harry no longer had a vacant stare on his face. Ginny quickly got him a plate and the two sat to eat their meal while Ron took a plate up to his mother’s room. Hermione waited for him to come back to the table to eat his own meal. He didn’t.
After twenty or so minutes she went up the stairs to find him outside his parent’s bedroom. He sat on the steps to the fifth landing, head on his knees and arms wrapped around his legs. The meal still sat outside his mother’s door, untouched. Hermione made sure to step on every squeaky board to alert him to her presence before sitting down beside him.
“Was your Mum still asleep?”
Ron shook his head before sitting up and rubbing his hands over his face.
“She’s crying and I can’t get her to stop…”
She desperately wanted to know what prompted his mother’s backslide, but didn’t want to push him. Pushing Harry had been disastrous the other day, and she hadn’t the energy to face it from Ron as well. Ron wasn’t like Harry, though. He didn’t bottle things up the same way, and she knew he’d open up and tell her without her having to harangue him for answers.
“George got arrested for breaking his parole,” he said in a low voice, eyes not meeting hers.
“What?! What parole?”
“Night before last he Apparated right on top of the London Tower Bridge. I was up when Kingsley called, so me and Dad went to get George from the Ministry. He got parole. Last night he broke it by pointing his wand in public and someone saw and reported him.”
“Why didn’t you tell me?”
"I wasn’t going to tell anyone. George gets enough looks, doesn’t he? He’s been such a mess, and Dad and I thought it’d be best Mum knew when things were all settled, but Kingsley Flooed the house to check on George about an hour ago, and well…”
“What a terrible way to find out.”
“Mum’s been holed up in her bedroom since. Harry took Ginny for a fly, so neither of ‘em know yet... I just thought maybe some food and tea would work to coax Mum out, but of course it didn’t.”
“Where’s George now?”
“With Bill, I think. Bill took it on this time.” Ron just shook his head. He stared down at his hand and gave a loud swear.
“Is that the time?” he launched off the steps, barreling past Hermione.
“Where are you going?”
“To finish this fucking buggering pissing piece of shit day!”
She scurried after him, but ended up a floor behind him as his long legs skipped steps with ease. She could hear his mutters all the way down the stairs.
“Need to get some wellies, clean the kitchen…”
“Ginny and I saw to the kitchen” she called after him, hoping to slow him down.
“Oh, fuck me! The paperwork!” he moaned as he reached the last flight of stairs and Apparated with a loud crack. A few seconds later she heard another crack outside the house.
She went to the window and saw Ron sprinting away, paper in one hand, wellies in another, not bothering to look back or give a hint of an explanation.
For a terrible instant she was back next to that riverbank in Wales, rain pummeling her as she begged Ron not to leave her.
She took a deep breath and closed her eyes.
Little pieces of happiness… She supposed she’d have to live on the little pieces of happiness from the night before, because there weren’t any to be found today.
Next chapter is Ron's POV again. Thanks for reading! If you like this and want to see more please review! :)
I've been terrible at responding, but please know I read them and EVENTUALLY I respond to everyone. :P
BIG THANKS TO @abradystrix FOR BETA-ING!
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