The characters and canon situations in the following story belong solely to JK Rowling, Scholastic and WB. I am not making any money from the publishing or writing of this story.
Beta credit for this chapter: bunnyhops and CoquetteKitten.
An absurd story set in an impossibly ridiculous AU. Guaranteed to poke fun at everything you’ve ever taken for granted in HP fanfic. Certain to make you snicker (and maybe even swoon). I’d warn you to flee, but where’s the fun in that?
The late spring of their second seventh year promised to be the most beautiful they could remember in their time at Hogwarts. It seemed that the sun shone from morning to evening every day, and the rain rarely fell before curfew each night. Birdsong filled the air, students spilled out over the lawns and gardens each afternoon, and flowers bloomed in riotous color everywhere, drawing attention away from the war-ravaged castle. Even the shy giant squid made near-daily appearances.
The wizarding world was working at healing itself after the defeat of Voldemort at the Battle of Hogwarts. The remaining Death Eaters had been rounded up, tried and sentenced. Unknown heroes were brought to light, and the unfortunate ones like Severus Snape were decorated posthumously. The machinations of those in the greatest positions of power might never be fully known by the everyday witch and wizard, but they were accepted unquestioningly as necessary for the triumph of good. In the end, the Wizengamot had extended full pardons to several powerful families with former ties to the Dark Lord; this, too, was found acceptable by the magical population of England, and so the likes of Lucius Malfoy and his son were welcomed back into the good graces of society without so much as the blink of an eye. It had helped, in their case, that they had been secretly working against Voldemort from the start of the second war and had openly denounced him towards its end, striving to defeat him and his followers. Wizarding England positively swooned over dark, misunderstood secret agents of the light.
The Boy Who Lived and his illustrious friends had turned away from anything touched by the war. The three declined the offers of jobs and honorary diplomas, opting to earn them instead with one last half-year of age-appropriate work. They, along with the many students who had fled Hogwarts last year, wanted to make their last memories of school as happy as possible.
Hermione surprised everyone, herself included, by choosing a less-than exhausting academic schedule. For the first time in her nineteen years, she wanted something other than books to read and papers to write. She wanted time with friends. Most of all, she wanted time to flop back on her bed and stare at the ceiling if she chose.
The experience so far had been exhilarating; she’d never dreamed that being an ordinary student could be so freeing. There was only one thing that could have made the year perfect — sharing her new outlook on life with her parents; but they had been lost to her forever. The memory spell she had used to help hide them had proven successful, and she had guided them lovingly towards their new life in Australia. Their house had been sold, the furniture and household boxes shipped, and they had boarded their flight. Hermione had been in hiding from Death Eaters when news of the plane’s crash reached her via Muggle newspaper clipping. Her parents had never reached Australia, and she hadn’t saved them after all. In the end, she followed Harry’s example, and lived with determination and a firmly lifted chin. It helped to have the love and support of the Weasleys and Harry, as well as the high expectations of Professor McGonagall.
The second chance at their seventh year had given Hermione and her peer’s one last chance to reconcile past grievances. Professor Dumbledore had specifically called upon Harry to set an example of forgiveness and support, and then he had addressed the student body as a whole. Harry took the Headmaster’s words to heart and worked to overcome his prejudices.
Ron was disappointed at first, until Hermione pointed out that it was actually a sign that Harry was growing up. At that point, Ron had stomped off to sulk for a long while, and when he finally returned, it became obvious that he had decided to grow up as well. Slowly, fighting dwindled until it was infrequent. Slowly, vicious remarks and shoving in the hallways gave way to (at first) teasing and (a bit later) study groups.
Harry, Ron and Hermione were in that enviable part of every scholar’s final year — the time after all the important tests have been given, but before the academic year was complete. For a few brief weeks, their concentration was demanded only to fit more friends and antics into each day. That, and, for Hermione, the need to finish up her List of Books to Read in the Near Future, accumulated with the aid of her professors and Madame Pince. The boys rolled their eyes in a good-natured way whenever she stopped to add to it; she was Hermione, after all, and this was just one of those maddening yet oddly endearing things about her.
Hermione was still a bit in love with Ron, although he still hadn’t pursued anything more than friendship with her. Once every so often he’d grab her hand and hold it for a few moments, all the while smiling sweetly at her. It would keep her going for weeks, and when its effect began to wear off and she began to get restless, he would do it all over again. If she hadn’t known him for so long, she would have suspected he was effectively peeing on her leg to keep other boys away and her uninterested in anyone else. But Ron had never been that subtle, nor much of a strategist outside of wizard’s chess. No, he was her Ron and it was all but written in the stars that they would end up together. Someday.
The boys were slowly growing apart from her, though, Ron especially. He had begun to split his time between his friends and the various witches he sneaked to his room after successful Quidditch matches (he was under the mistaken assumption that Hermione hadn’t noticed). When he did forget that he wanted to keep the girls a secret from Hermione and was caught snuggling with them in the common room at night, he would always smile at her in the way that made her forget everything and then say something like, “I just feel like such a lost soul right now, ‘Mione. I need time to figure myself out.”
Harry’s official role as head peacekeeper at Hogwarts meant that he was now friends with practically everybody, and that everybody was friends with him; especially the witches. Without the need to lead a crusade any longer, he was putting all his previously war-related skills to use in the sexual arena. Basically, he spent the majority of his time rutting like a young buck. Sex in the alcove behind the suit of armor on the main floor during passing time between 3rd and 4th hour classes? Done.
Sex under the Whomping Willow in broad daylight after classes were done for the day? Done (he’d dodged the branches until he’d pressed the small knot at the tree’s base, then lured his partner in). Sex on the stairs to the Headmaster’s office? Done… often.
He made no apologies, and was so good-natured that Hermione couldn’t find it in her heart to judge him. After all, he’d had a horrible childhood, battled an evil wizard for years, and now he was finally free to be whomever he chose. And do it with whomever he chose. It had occurred to her that Witch Weekly would have a field day with him once he left the privacy of Hogwarts.
There were house parties to attend as well — and in the interests of unity after the war, these parties were now open to all students who were fifth year or above. The Gryffindor party had been a few weeks earlier; it would probably live in infamy for years to come. The firewhiskey had flowed, generously gifted by Harry, and as a result Ron had lit the end of his broomstick on fire and flown it around the common room a bit too close to the hanging tapestries. With the upper part of the room in flames and most of the attending students too inebriated to do anything but laugh hysterically, there had been nothing to do but move the party to the outer hallway. Here, the large group had come face to face with Harry, Ginny, and Luna, each bare from the waist up and wrapped around the other two in a way that gave no room for misinterpretation. When he became aware of the audience (it took more than a few seconds), Harry released his mouth from around Ginny’s nipple with a loud, wet smacking sound and gave a sheepish smile, but his hands never broke their grip of Luna’s breasts. It was a moment when it was good to be Harry Potter — no one else would ever have lived it down, but he managed to accrue even more worshippers and keep the girls. Both seemed very happy with the arrangement, as did he.
Hermione herself had left that party early on. She had attempted to have her first taste of firewhiskey, but it had been sternly taken from her grasp by Draco Malfoy. It seemed to her that Draco had spent the greater part of the evening foiling any chance of her having fun. Dancing with her friends? He had suddenly acquired a penchant for finger sandwiches, of which the buffet had run out. Trying to catch Ron’s eye in the hopes that this might be the night — the one when they finally declared their feelings for each other and sealed their new relationship with her first kiss? Draco had interrupted each of her attempts to flirt with Ron, each time needing something which required her to Floo to the kitchens for more food. She would have been furious, but Malfoy had been nothing less than kind and courteous each time. Instead, she had swallowed her disappointment and found sanctuary in the library.
During her time of quiet reflection (because she certainly hadn’t been able to read anything after the image of Ron devouring Lisa Turpin’s face had been burned into her mind), it had occurred to her that a good portion of her possible fun had been foiled by Draco Malfoy since first year. He had steered clear of her in all ways except to foil fun on a regular basis. Perhaps it was a pureblood thing. Hermione contemplated the idea of making a small Draco voodoo doll.
Today Hermione felt unusually optimistic about her immediate future. She loved her classes, she and Harry (and, therefore, Ginny and Luna) had made plans to study together later, and the weekend was fast approaching. In years past, she had hated the idea of her brain stagnating for two days and had worked to fill Saturdays and Sundays with self-made lessons. Only now, in the spring of her final year, was she coming to realize the bliss of two days filled with nothing but the pursuit of pleasure and clean laundry. Those things and parties.
This upcoming Saturday night would be yet another Slytherin party. Honestly, those students had more money than they knew how to use! Hermione was looking forward to it for two reasons. Firstly, she’d been dragged shopping by Ginny and Luna and had found a distinctly un-Hermione-like dress which was begging to be worn. It was dark green and a bit daring, and when she put it on she felt the same way she had at the Yule Ball in fourth year. Secondly, she was looking forward to giving Malfoy a taste of his own medicine. Hermione had worked out at least seven strategies to keep him from having fun at his own party! Perhaps she should have counted a third reason for wanting to go to the dance, but somewhere in between her new dress and the idea of banishing all fun from Draco’s night, her usual daydreams of Ron sweeping her off her feet were forgotten.
Can’t say that I blame her.