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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18. Une Vraie Victoire

A True Victory

 

The wooden door opened and the careworn look of Mrs Weasley appeared at the other side.

"Hello, dears," she said as she bestowed a hug to each of them, "We've almost got everyone, just Bill and Fleur to still arrive. Lunch will be ready in two shakes of a lamb's tail."

Mrs Weasley looked behind Fred and Hermione to Hermione's parents who were looking a bit green in the face from the slightly erratic driving of Fred. Henry Granger offered to drive, but Fred had turned down his numerous offers saying that he had 'done it all before'.

Hermione, on the other hand, had only ever heard the story of Harry's escape from the Dursley's in second year. She thought that if this ride had beared any resemblance to today's, she was in slight surprise that they had made it back in one piece. Then again, it may have been George that was driving that time. Hermione decided that she would check later, and then suggest that her father drive back home.

When everyone's coats had been put away, the group began to mingle with the rest of the family: Marian joining Molly in the kitchen to share housekeeping tips; Henry joining Arthur in the domain of the shed, Mr Weasley claiming that he needed help with the safe disposal of batteries (Mrs Weasley was not fooled for a second).

Hermione and Fred were left to their own devices, and their eyes flitted about the immensely crowded sitting room as they looked for a conversation to join, making sure to stay well away from where Xenophilius Lovegood had engaged Ron in a conversation about the sensitivity of Erumpent Horns.

Unfortunately for Hermione, Percy had managed to snag her away and bombard her with the results of his latest research on whether now was the appropriate time to introduce a family-sized transport vehicle into the market. However, she did not have to endure this for very long because Fleur's baby bump was being pushed through the door, followed by its owner. Bill was left trailing slightly behind, holding the bags.

Hermione immediately rushed forward to help the expectant mother.

"Fleur! Why don't you come over here and put your feet up?"

"Sorry we are late," grumbled Fleur as she carefully lowered herself into the armchair, "Ze baby, she is moving around a leetle too much today. I cannot wait until she is born..."

"So, you know it is going to be a girl?" asked Hermione with obvious excitement.

"Non, but Bill thinks it will be. I am only humouring him," replied Fleur rubbing concentric circles on her side, "but we will be finding out any day now!"

Hermione smiled, but could not help admonishing the young woman.

"You should have stayed home to rest!"

"Non, 'ermione, I would not want to miss today. Not for all the galleons in Gringotts. I did not fight in ze war so that I could stay at home. Today is a day for celebration, so that our children, zey would be safe."

Hermione nodded at her, completely understanding what Fleur was trying to say. They were not celebrating their victory on that fateful May day. They were rejoicing in the fact that they were alive, something that had not been so secure on that fateful May day. No matter how hard they tried, they could never forget what a privilege it was to be able to wake up in the morning and see those whom you loved. They would never be able to miss the opportunity to see their dream realised.

"Lunch is ready!" Mrs Weasley's cry was punctuated with a little giggle on the end as Mr Weasley had kissed her cheek.

Everyone laughed as they set themselves down in front of what was a feast to rival the ones of Hogwarts. As everyone emptied their plates, Mrs Weasley was bustling around filling them up once more. It seemed like each of the bowls, and pots, and trays on the table were refilling themselves magically.

The levels of liquid in the bottles of mead reach an all time low over the course of the meal, although Hermione noticed a number of the ladies who were discreetly avoiding it. Audrey and Fleur were obviously pregnant, but neither Ginny, nor Luna were drinking anything alcoholic.

At one point, Hermione even raised an eyebrow in Ginny's direction, but Ginny kept her lips shut and put her arm around Harry protectively. Hermione was mentally cheering Ginny and Harry when she heard a yelp from across the table.

All chatter immediately ceased and looked in the direction of Fleur.

"Do not worry, it just felt like a very strong kick. I'm sure zat is ze baby's way of saying how happy he or she is to be 'ere."

The remainder of the people at the table went back to their food, however, Hermione kept her eyes on Fleur, and noticed that the young woman was vigorously rubbing at a spot on the base of her much distended stomach.

This had not escaped the notice of Marian, who was sitting to the right of Hermione.

"Are you sure that you're alright, dear?"

"Yes," replied Fleur in a small voice, but the grimace on her face gave the game away.

"Perhaps we should get you to St whats-its? Molly, you've had more children than what I have, what do you think?"

Molly was already nodding before Marian had even finished the question.

"No, no!" protested Fleur, "I will be fi-"

She let in a sharp intake of air, and Bill leaned in towards her.

"Maybe you should listen to mum. I've got a feeling she knows what she is talking about."

Fleur finally conceded by nodding meekly as she attempted to lift her weight from the chair.

Amongst the chatter concerning Fleur, there were a few excited whispers about how exciting it would be if the baby was born that evening. It would be a true victory against all the death eaters that were still present in the Wizarding community.

"You know, some tea made from gurdy-roots has been known to speed along the initial stages of labour," said Xenophilius above the ever-rising volume of noise. The few snorts of derision were quickly masked, and preparations for the sudden change in plan were made.

While all the others were preparing to Floo to St Mungo's, Hermione and Fred bundled up Hermione's parents towards the car. Hermione did not think that they would be able to handle the Floo system, especially when she was not sure if they would be able to use it, being muggles.

"Er...Fred," said Hermione, when they got to the car, "maybe you should let my Dad drive to the hospital..."

Fred looked at her with a quizzical expression.

"Why?"

"Ummm..." stalled Hermione. She did not want Fred to know that she thought his driving skills could use some drastic improvement.

"So that we know how to get there for when your little one is born," replied Marian with a wink in Hermione's direction.

"Exactly!" said Hermione, seizing the excuse with gusto. "We wouldn't want you to miss out on that."

Fred seemed to accept this, and passed the keys on to Henry who was now looking incredibly relieved at the sudden change of plans.

HPHPHPHPHPHPHPHPHPHP

Despite having taken much longer than the others to get to the hospital, the small group did not have any difficulty locating the remainder of the Weasley clan once they got to the appropriate floor. There were Weasley's and Potter's everywhere. Some were huddled in corners, while the slightly more inebriated were slumped in chairs while their wives tutted about how it was their own fault.

Hermione's parents dispersed themselves from the younger generation and went to join the soon-to-be Weasley grandparents. With Fred on her tail, Hermione made her way over to Ginny.

"Have you heard anything yet?"

Ginny shook her head.

"Not much, but Bill was out a little while ago to tell us that it shouldn't be too much longer."

Just as Ginny closed her mouth, Bill appeared at the end of the corridor once more.

The chattering stopped, and heads were raised expectantly.

"It's a girl!" he cried to the room at large.

An enormous cheer went up around the waiting area, that Hermione was sure could be heard around the entire hospital.

Out of the corner of her eye, Hermione could see Mrs Weasley sobbing with joy into her handkerchief as she ushered her husband over so that they could go and see the new addition of their family.

"A few of you can go in to see her, but no more than four or five at a time."

Molly and Arthur immediately rushed forward while the others created small groups deciding that Percy and Dee would be next in line.

Hermione and Fred sat down in the waiting area with those remaining, waiting patiently for their turn.

"Ooh, she's got the cutest tufts of red hair. There'll be no mistaking that she's a Weasley!" Dee squealed as she came towards Hermione and Fred. "You two can go in once Ron, Luna and Luna's father come out," she added as she placed a protective hand upon her own stomach.

Hermione turned to face Fred with a mixture of excitement and trepidation evident in her voice as she spoke.

"In a few months, that's going to be us."

"Yeah," replied Fred in an awed voice. "Can you believe that we're going to be parents? We're actually going to be responsible for a little person."

Hermione feigned a look of absolute horror.

"Don't tell me Fred Weasley is actually going to be responsible for once in his life?"

"It's been known to happen," smirked Fred, "but Ron and Luna are back. Should we get going before someone jumps the queue? Marian, Henry, would you like to join us?"

"We don't want to intru-" began Marian.

"Nonsense," replied Fred, cutting off his mother-in-law, "You're family now in all the ways that matter, we would love for you to join us."

Hermione looked up at her husband with pride as they walked down the hospital corridor to the room where Fleur was staying. She had spent many hours cursing how unfair the marriage law was, but when she really thought about it, she could do a lot worse.

The small group made it to the door of Fleur's room, and crept in as quietly as they could so as not to wake the baby.

"She's absolutely beautiful, congratulations!" whispered Hermione to the small family as she watched the tiny girl sleep contentedly in the arms of her mother.

"Yes, dear, congratulations. Have you decided on a name yet?" enquired Marian in a low voice.

"Victoire," replied Fleur almost at once as she sent a secret smile towards Hermione.

Hermione beamed a smile towards the proud parents. It truly was a victory for them all.

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