A Dance Through Thyme [Harry Potter]

There are no strangers here; only friends you haven't met. An unknown man sends Hermione back to the Marauder's Era as revenge, however, the consequences are far more disastrous than what even he imagines when Hermione loses her memory of the past. Why did that man do this to her, and what secrets will be spilled? Who is the guilty party?

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32. Chapter 31: Akzeptanz

A tid-bit of information will be revealed in this chapter. You'll know it when you read it. All I ask for is your patience, and all shall be revealed in the future.

 

Acceptance

"Lily, you look stunning," whispered Hermione. She looked at Lily with an amalgamation of awe and jealousy. She was truly happy for her new friend, after all, she was marrying the love of her life today; however, there was a part of her that craved it for herself.

Hermione had been given a second chance at life, and perhaps even in this timeline she would never get to experience the joy of a long-lasting relationship with someone whom she loved. It seemed remarkably selfish to love, given the fact that she was the only person who understood the true danger that every person was in.

"Twirl for me," she smiled at her friend.

Lily followed Hermione's instructions, and swivelled on the tips of her toes.

The skirt of her dress skimmed over the tops of her knees, and fanned out from where it was cinched just below her bust. A pale green ribbon held the silk in place whilst the remainder of the dress skimmed over her slim figure.

One of her hands held the hem of her skirt, whilst the other kept a simple headpiece in place. It was a single wire that had many beads, moonstones and crystals threaded on to it before it had been wound around on itself to mould to Lily's head. She wore no veil, and only flat shoes.

"I'm glad that James agreed with a simple wedding," said Lily when she had finished twirling.

"You and I both," giggled Hermione, as she stopped to adjust her own outfit. The pale green of her dress matched the sash on Lily's. Both dresses were of a similar style, but Hermione's one was constructed of chiffon, not silk as Lily's had been.

Lily stooped down to pick up a small spray of flowers from a table.

"Come here," she said to Hermione. "Let me put this on you."

Lily's hands reached up to pin the flowers onto Hermione's dress. As she did a little of the fabric rose up, resting on her stomach. Hermione's eyes immediately snapped to the mid-region of her friend, eyes widening in suspicion. Quicker than she had looked, she moved her eyes back up, staring straight ahead, but it seemed that Lily had caught her looking.

Her cheeks turned pink in embarrassment, hoping she wasn't assuming something that she shouldn't be.

"Your assumption is probably not wrong, Hermione," said Lily, her hands dropping to her waist.

"Have you told anyone?" were the only words that Hermione could think to say at the moment, feeling completely numb on the inside.

"James is the only person that knows. We weren't going to tell anyone until after the wedding, but I'm three months pregnant, and for those that know me well enough, I guess it's noticeable."

Hermione felt her heart dropping through her chest; it was so bittersweet for a loving couple to be bringing a baby into a dangerous world. But the only thought that was travelling through her mind was that the timing was all wrong. If this baby were Harry, then he was arriving far too early. Would that mean that everything in this timeline would be brought forward? Did Hermione have much less time than what she anticipated?

"Hermione, are you okay? You've gone really pale," Lily questioned.

Hermione swallowed, hastily re-arranging her facial features into a smile.

"I'm really happy for you, Lils," she finally said, giving Lily a tight hug. "But don't worry, I won't tell anyone for you."

Relief flooded Lily's face as she hugged Hermione back, just as tightly.

"Thank you," she breathed. "Now, let's get this show on the road!"

Hermione laughed, feeling the tension of the room lift slightly.

"You stay here and relax. I'll go check to see if everyone and everything is ready."

Leaving the room, Hermione walked outside into the Spanish sun. Lily and James had elected to move out of the country for the wedding, partly for the warm weather, and partly for the privacy that it would bring. The only people that knew they were being married were the people who were invited to the wedding. The owners of a very remote vineyard had allowed them to host the wedding there, even offering up a couple of guest cottages free of charge so that the bride and groom would each have a place to get ready on the day.

Although the nights were quite cool, the days were still warm.

If Lily were pregnant now, how much time did that give them to hunt down the horcruxes and destroy them? Did the prophecy even hold any longer? Many questions flitted in and out of Hermione mind, too quick for her to even acknowledge most of them.

"Hermione!"

Sirius' voice raised her out of her stupor. He was jogging over to her.

"James is ready when Lily is," he said. "The decorations are all in place, and Dumbledore has arrived. He is also ready to start the ceremony as soon as they are."

Hermione nodded, putting her thoughts away to one side. She must not give in to her emotions and reveal too much. She must never let on what she knows about the potential futures' of these people.

"Thanks for that. I'll let Lily know. See you in a few minutes."

Turning on her heel, Hermione started back towards the cottage. Breathing in deeply, she attempted to steady herself before facing Lily again.

HPHPHPHPHPHPHPHP

The sun was shining through the trees. The leaves gently refracted the light so that every person was illuminated.

Hermione looked on at the small crowd of people. It was a very small wedding.

She was the maid of honour for Lily, whilst Sirius was James' best man. Dumbledore had agreed to be the officiator for the event. The only others present were Remus, Marlene McKinnon (as Sirius' date), and the respective parents of the bride and groom.

Mrs Potter was currently in a wheelchair, unable to walk very far. Although Hermione never knew the details regarding the deaths of Mr and Mrs Potter, she was sure that Mrs Potter at least, might not make it to see the birth of her grandchild. However, it did lighten her heart a little to see how affectionate and loving James' parents were towards one another. Mr and Mrs Evans, also present, seemed to be delighted by everything, especially the part where Dumbledore had touched the tip of his wand to Lily and James' intertwined hands.

A thin stream of light issued forth as James released one of his hands to place the ring on Lily's outstretched finger.

"I James, take you Lily, to be wife. To share the good times and hard times side by side. I give you my hand and my heart, and pledge my faith and love to you. Just as this circle is without end, my love for you is eternal. With this ring, I thee wed."

Placing the golden band on the appropriate finger of James' left hand, Lily recited her own vows. Another stream of light was released from Dumbledore's wand, and it connected itself to the first strand, creating an unbreakable bond.

"I Lily, take you James, to be my husband. To share the good times and hard times side by side. I give you my hand and my heart, and pledge my faith and love to you. Just as this circle is without end, my love for you is eternal. With this ring, I thee wed."

When Dumbledore spoke it was with great assurance.

"In that case, I pronounce you husband and wife. James, you may kiss your bride."

What seemed like a lifetime of ambition had just been fulfilled for James, and he pulled Lily close into his arms for a passionate kiss. Hermione had never been completely dry at weddings, but this was one time when the floodgates well and truly opened.

Hermione couldn't have been happier for her friends as she sat and watched them.

After the ceremony, the owners of the vineyard had another surprise in store as they set up a giant table filled with all kinds of locally produced food. Of course, the table was also liberally dotted with many bottles of the locally produced wine as well. The sun was going down as Hermione popped another olive in her mouth, and the gradual darkness allowed her to admire the many sparkling tea lights that illuminated the table and surrounding trees.

"Knut for your thoughts," a deep and quiet voice said from beside her.

Hermione shook her head, and turned to face the owner of the voice.

"Oh, it's you Remus..."

Remus chuckled at her, sitting in the vacant seat next to Hermione.

"You don't seem to please to see me!"

Hermione felt herself flush, and attempted to sound more upbeat.

"Sorry, I didn't mean to... I...umm...to be honest, I don't know what I was thinking. I really am sorry."

Remus chuckled again, holding out his hand.

"Why don't you rectify your mistake by agreeing to dance with me?"

He inclined his head towards the record player that had been charmed to play soft string music on a continuous loop.

Hermione looked out into the dark and was able to make out Lily and James, arm in arm twirling on the spot. A little further away from them Mr and Mrs Evans were doing much the same. Sirius and Marlene had long since disappeared, and Mr Potter was content to sit with his wife, chatting away to Professor Dumbledore.

It was like any previous arguments had been erased. Perhaps Remus was ready to let go of his feelings.

"Okay," replied Hermione, after realising that Remus was still waiting for an answer. Accepting his outstretched hand, she allowed him to lead her over to a level bit of grass. It was not the cool air that made her shiver when Remus wrapped his arm securely around her waist, pulling her close to him.

Silently they rocked from side to side. Hermione had to admit that she had not felt so content in a very long time.

"We should do this again sometime," said Remus, instantly turning red as he realised what he suggested. "Not a wedding, obviously, but we should see each other more often. We used to spend so much time together, now we hardly ever see each other."

Hermione had to refrain herself from adding that it was because they were both too stubborn to agree to disagree. In her heart of hearts, she knew that they would have to resolve their issues before any progression could be made, in a friendship or otherwise, but for now she didn't have the heart to disagree.

"Yes," she found herself saying to him. "That would be lovely."

As an incentive to comment, I solemnly promise to fan each author who chooses to give me a comment on this chapter :)

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