Légitimement Mariés [Harry Potter]

COMPLETED: Harry Potter Marriage Law. Fremione. Post Hogwarts. Fred may have survived the Battle of Hogwarts, but now he has a new challange - being married to Hermione!

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10. Incomfortable

Uncomfortable

 

Fred and Hermione had very little time to dwell on what they collectively remembered from their wedding night. They were expected out of the cottage by mid-morning, and time was already ticking.

They ate a hurried breakfast, doing everything that they could to avoid making eye contact the whole time. Barely a word was said between them, even afterwards, when they were packing up their belongings. They merely grasped each other's hands, and apparated themselves back to the Burrow, eager to be amongst family who would, with some luck, mask any tension between the most recently married couple.

The pressing darkness of apparition did very little to alleviate any of Hermione's uneasiness, in fact, she would blush a bright scarlet whenever she thought of the whole thing, and cry out the same question in her head.

"Why did I have to bring out the champagne last night? WHY?"

"Hermione? HERMIONE? What's wrong? Your face looks likes you've spent the last three days in a sauna."

"Hmm?" replied Hermione absent-mindedly as she looked up at Ginny's concerned expression.

They were sitting at the kitchen table of the Burrow, alone, tying green ribbons around the wedding favours for Ginny and Harry's wedding.

"Why does your face keep turning red? Usually you only do that when you're hiding something..."

This only caused Hermione to turn a deeper hue of puce.

"You ARE hiding something, aren't you?"

"No," said Hermione in a small voice as though she thought that might deter the spirited Ginny.

"Yes! Yes, you are hiding something!"

"No...don't...you'll find it disgusting."

"Hermione, what could I possibly find that disgusting?"

Head down, and in the most mumbled voice Ginny had ever heard, Hermione revealed what was bothering her.

"I slept with your brother."

"I can kind of use my imagination here, but you are going to have to be a little more explicit. In case it has escaped your notice, I have several brothers."

"Fred," replied Hermione in that same mumbled tone.

Ginny blinked away her confusion.

"What's so bad about that? Yes, I am a little grossed out by the fact that you're telling me this, but you slept with your husband. It's hardly what one might define as scandalous."

"Yeah," said Hermione slowly, "but, from what I remember, I liked it."

Comprehension dawned on Ginny as her mouth formed a silent 'Oh'.

"And, you feel guilty, don't you? That's why you're acting this way."

Hermione still did not look up at this.

"Oh, Hermione," said Ginny moving around the table to hug her friend. "You shouldn't be feeling that way. Fred is my brother, and it does pain me to say this, but he is your husband and he won't have taken that role lightly. He might be a joker and a prankster, but he is decent."

Ginny's face lost most of its sympathy, and she spoke with all seriousness as Hermione began to make noises of protest.

"I wasn't going to say anything before, because I didn't want to pressure you, but I think he really does like you. Like, really likes you. I don't think he would have said yes to marriage otherwise."

"What?" said Hermione, completely dumbstruck.

"Please don't tell anyone that I said anything. I don't think he even really knows it himself, yet. But, just a little off topic...can we get back to tying these ribbons, Mum's going to be breathing down out necks in a minute."

Just as Ginny said that, the duo heard a knock at the kitchen window.

"Who on Earth could that be?" said Ginny, her tone growing more exasperated with every word, both desperate and excited to get back to her own wedding preparations.

Hermione ignored Ginny's noises of frustration as she stood and walked over to the tawny owl that was perched, waiting patiently on the windowsill.

Hermione was slightly bewildered when she saw that the slip of parchment was addressed her and Fred. Slitting open the seal, her mouth slid open when she saw what was written.

 

Dear Mr and Mrs Fred Weasley,

According to Ministry of Magic records in the Office of Magical Births, Deaths and Marriages, yourselves, on Tuesday, March 7, were legally and magically bound.

As a result of this, it is required of you, by law, to be present for a ministry approved inspection to ensure the terms of the law are being met.

The date of your inspection is Wednesday, March 15 at 10 00h.

We would greatly appreciate your cooperation regarding this undertaking.

 

Kind regards,

Miranda Sampson

Office of Magical Births, Deaths and Marriages

Ministry of Magic

 

 

"Mione? Is there something wrong?"

Ginny's voice snapped Hermione out of her reverie.

"Err...I don't know...Fred and I have our inspection from the ministry coming up, just after your wedding. I don't know if we'll be ready."

"What do you mean?" said Ginny, brows puckering over her clear, brown eyes.

Hermione sighed out her insecurities.

"It's just that you and Harry know that you are moving into Grimmauld Place after you're married. Fred and I don't really have a place to line in permanently. George and Angie have claimed the flat above the shop for now, and we can't stay here forever."

Ginny nodded her head in understanding, and motioned for Hermione to continue speaking.

"We're thinking of moving into a place in Diagon Alley. It's not perfect, but it's close to the shop for him, and I can easily get to the ministry from there. If we get started tomorrow, we might just be able to have it ready for the inspection...actually, I have better let Fred know about this. He'll need to take the morning off from work, won't he?"

Without waiting for an answer, Hermione sped off, leaving a spluttering and annoyed Ginny in her wake.

"Oi! You promised to help me today!"

HPHPHPHPHPHPHPHPHPHP

Ginny and Harry's wedding had been beautiful and incredibly romantic, no one could deny that. Ginny's obsessive planning and preparation had paid off and everyone had had a good time, however this did not stop Hermione from mentally cursing it as she hastily moved around her new home, setting things straight.

The wedding had set their schedule back a little when it came to her and Fred moving into their new flat in Diagon Alley.

It was a stone's throw away from Weasley's Wizarding Wheezes, making it easy for Fred, and it was only a short Floo trip for Hermione to the Ministry (she wasn't a huge fan of the Floo network, and she was very grateful that it was over before she had the chance to get nauseous). The flat itself was simple, and spacious, that is, it would be once she managed to clean it up.

"Where the heck is Fred?" Hermione screeched around her brain.

Right on cue, looking as if he did not have a care in the world, Fred strolled in through the front door.

Hermione did her best to keep her voice level.

"Where have you been, might I ask?"

Her voice had the deadly calm of a cobra about to strike.

"A ministry official is going to be here any minute, assessing the legitimacy of our lives and you feel the need to go gallivanting about the street. Where have you been Frederick Weasley?"

Fred was also displaying an acute sense of calm, however, unlike Hermione's, his was genuine. This skill had been developed in his rather informative childhood, thanks to his mother's discipline.

"I was at the shop," he said simply as he proceeded to hang up his coat on the already overflowing coat-rack by the front door.

"Any you couldn't ask George or Lee to cover for you?"

"No," said Fred in that same unconcerned tone that so very much irritated Hermione. "Lee had his own inspection to worry about, and I could leave Georgie-boy to fend for himself. Beside's you've already done such a wonderful job here, love."

Despite her frustration, Hermione could not help but feel her heart flutter a little when he called her 'love'.

The first couple of weeks of marriage had been incredibly informative for Hermione. She had learned a great deal about and from her husband. Apparently he had become a rather talented cook after he and George moved into their flat above the shop ("We couldn't let ourselves starve, could we?").

His ability to clean, on the other hand, left a lot to be desired, however he felt that this was often an illusion. It only appeared messy because Hermione was so fastidiously neat.

They decided to keep up appearances and share a bed. This had not been too traumatic for either of them. However, to Hermione's intense horror, she often found herself having to move closer to the end of the bed because Fred had this unconscious habit of moving closer to the middle, and thus her, in the middle of the night, in his sleep. Many were the mornings where Hermione would wake up with a stiff neck and sore back, and she presently was rubbing at her lower back as though her frustration with Fred was manifesting itself physically.

The doorbell echoed around the now spotless apartment.

"He's here," said Fred, winking as he moved close enough to put his arm around Hermione's waist. Hermione flinched at first as his arm made contact with the sore spot, but she felt oddly comfortable in his embrace, despite the fact that she knew it was all part of the pretence that they had agreed to.

Swelling with one last steadying breath of courage, Hermione reached forward and turned the door knob.

Hermione opened the door to a man that she immediately disliked. He squinted at Hermione and Fred, pulling his round glasses to the end of his nose for a better look, as thought this mere act could tell him if the married pair were up to anything suspicious.

"Please, come in," said Hermione through clenched teeth as she forced a smile to her lips.

Apparently they passed his first test, because he stepped inside and began to survey the room at large, taking in its cleanliness and the wide open space of kitchen, dining and lounge rooms. He immediately began to make, what Hermione hoped were pleasant, notes on his clipboard.

The physical inspection of the couple's living arrangements was thankfully brief, however, Hermione resented how much time he spent in their bedroom, looking through their wardrobes, or rather, Hermione's wardrobe. Fred's only got a cursory glance in comparison to her.

However, the wizard moved on relatively quickly to the next part of his visit. A very detailed questionnaire, whose answers had to be written. All one hundred and fourteen of them. Hermione suspected that if years of essay-writing at Hogwarts had not led to arthritis, this questionnaire certainly would.

Still rubbing at her stiff fingers, Hermione stood with Fred following closely behind, each getting ready to usher the ministry official out the door as quickly as possible. However, they were not to get away so easily.

"One last thing..." his raspy voice trailed off as he moved his wand in a series of complicated movements.

Hermione felt a surge of heat right through her and out of the corner of her eye she saw a bright red light envelop both herself and Fred. She instantly felt her cheeks suffuse with blood at this.

Hermione had done some research on the "ministry approved visit" and she knew that the last part, that is the spell, was to test to see if the marriage had been consummated.

A light that was the colour that was surrounding Hermione and Fred at the moment indicated a positive result.

Fred apparently knew what the light meant as well seeing as a similar colour was gracing his face as well as he fidgeted on the spot.

With a hasty goodbye, and a slight smirk, the wizard left their home, saying that the results of the inspection would be issued in seven to ten working days.

 
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