Just as everyone said it would, their relationship had been on the mend in the years that followed Hermione running out on her wedding. It’d taken time, bitter comments and more restraint than Hermione had ever exhibited in her life, but her mother had come around to the idea that a wedding had not been in her best interest and dating two men had been.
Three years past the start of their relationship and her boys were welcomed over for dinner again, considered when making holiday plans, permitted to join the Grangers on their winter trip to France. Just last Christmas they’d joined the Weasleys for dinner, a little stiff at first, but warming up to the loud family quickly enough.
All of the effort, all of the time it had taken to repair the relationship, forgive her mistakes, made Hermione hesitate. She knew she loved them, the public knew she loved them. Yet her mother’s approval was that last piece of the puzzle that would make it feel real.
“Hermione,” her mother said when she popped by that Saturday. “What a pleasant surprise.”
“Is this a bad time? I realized I should have rang-“
“Not at all,” she said warmly, embracing her daughter. “I was just about to make a cuppa, care for one?”
She took off the scarf her mother had gifted her for her birthday and was careful to hang up her coat the muggle way.
“Ron got called in this morning and I thought I might stop by.”
“I’m glad you thought of me,” her mother said, guiding her into the kitchen. “Your father’s out at the shops but he should be back soon. How’s work? Did you ever get that dispute settled with the merpeople?”
And despite the news hovering over her, it was easy visiting with her mother. Hermione knew between work and her boys and their social lives she should be making more of an effort to visit with her parents but she still felt she visited with them often enough. It was a good half hour before there was any lull in the conversation at all, any opening.
“Harry still enjoying being back at school?”
“He is,” Hermione said proudly, smiling to herself. “I know it’s hard on him, being away from home. But once he gets more comfortable I’m sure we’ll see more of him.”
“All the students' star struck?” she teased.
“Perhaps at first, but Harry said once they got their marks from their first essay his favorability dropped quite a bit.”
They chuckled, smiling at one another.
“Mum, there’s actually something I want to talk with you about.”
“What is it dear?” she asked, missing the change in tone entirely.
“Yes?” she asked, looking a little apprehensive.
“We’ve decided to get married.” Hermione burst out, her face flushing. Her mother blinked back at her and in her nervousness, Hermione began to ramble. “We’ve been together for so long and we’re in love and once we have kids we want them to—and I know that you were really disappointed in me last time and we’re not asking for any money or anything but I don’t want to get married if you and dad aren’t there!”
She stopped, panting, and stared at her mother.
“I know that we didn’t handle it well—that I didn’t handle it well—but this time it’s different. We’re ready and we’re doing this for us.”
Still, her mother stared at her, unblinking.
“And I know how much effort you put in last time and I’m not asking you for anything, really, just…I need you there.”
“Hermione,” her mother whispered, reaching out and stilling the hand that was making Hermione’s teacup rattle. “Of course, we will be there.”
“Oh mum,” she cried.
“I just needed time, Hermione. I needed time to see that this was what was right for you….that you were really happy. And I know, I know you said you were all in love but it all seemed so strange and I think I had reached my limit for strangeness back then.”
Hermione forced herself to chuckle with her.
“So,” her mother went on. “Tell me how it happened then was it all three?”
“Yes, only in pairs. We all proposed to each other…”