“You know, you only have yourself to blame,” Hermione says, peeling the gauze bandage off of Ron’s arm. “And it’s right next to...”
Her voice trails off, and Ron steals a look at her in the gloom of the kitchen. She’d stopped for a moment, and even though he still felt woozy from the pain and the alcohol, he was curious what she would think of his new tattoo.
“Right next to where you were Splinched,” she finishes and Ron winces, gripping the kitchen stool he's sitting on as she pulls the rest of the bandage off.
“Harry’s idea,” he says, defensive, and Hermione tuts at him. “And who got Harry drunk?” she asks and Ron laughs dryly -- then weakly holds his stomach.
“It was his bachelor party, Hermione,” he says, and looks over at her. “See what it is?”
“Lumos,” she whispers, keeping her voice down, glancing at Harry, passed out on the couch. He’d been too drunk to make it to his bedroom, though Ron felt good about getting him home at all.
“Oh!” Hermione says, and Ron grins at the mixture of reprimand and interest in her voice. Hermione all over. “And what’s Harry’s then?”
“Same thing,” Ron replies, twisting his neck to see the griffin better, and notices Hermione hasn’t looked away yet.
“Like it then?” he asks, smug, until she reaches out to touch it and pain explodes across his arm as the griffin comes to life, sending a red burn towards his old scar. “Hermi--!” he yells before she muffles his mouth with her hand, a giggle threatening to escape her. “What’s so funny?” he asks, grumpy, before she says, “You almost woke Harry.”
The aforementioned lump on the couch turns over with a mumble about the Snitch and Ron takes a deep breath.
“Would you stay tonight, then?” Ron asks, trying not to sound too desperate, but still, Harry was asleep and he felt like he’d barely seen her the past few weeks, what with the wedding plans taking over their lives. They weren’t the ones getting married, and still...
Hermione’s hand curls into his and he covers it with his other hand, pulling her closer.
“Please stay,” he says, quiet again, when she rests her forehead against his hair. She smells like the library and traveling and...ginger.
“Were you baking today?” he asks and Hermione sighs. “Yes – well, trying. I think your mother doesn’t like my cooking.”
“Well I like it fine,” Ron says and Hermione kisses him warmly, so he swivels on the kitchen stool to reach her better, pulls her in to a hug when she steps between his legs.
“Of course I’ll stay,” Hermione says, and pulls back to look at his tattoo again. “We should probably dress that first though.”
“I like looking at it,” Ron says, watching the griffin stretch gently and while it still stings, it’s not so bad. Hermione looks at him for a long moment and he gets that knot in his stomach like she’s about to get a clever idea that’ll drive him mad, before she leans down to press the lightest of kisses on his tattoo. His nerves capture the new sensation and he gasps. “Hermione,” he says, shutting his eyes, and she laughs softly in the darkness. “First thing in the morning then,” she says primly and winks at him.