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Mother Nature

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Hermione didn't notice anything was astray at the beginning. Her time had been focused on other things after the war. In truth, Hermione was busy trying to help the Order sort out a new and safer world. So she never noticed the marks darkening on the arm; the place Bellatrix Lestrange had carved into her skin. Hermione had taken to covering them ever since the day the injury was inflicted, putting various spells on it, so the word wasn't noticeable to the eye. She wasn't ashamed but it served as a reminder to the world of how things used to be, the words that used to be considered the norm wasn't something she wanted to acknowledge. Especially since pureblood's like the Malfoy family were trying to change, to fix the things they had done. So yes, Hermione Granger never noticed for a whole year that the words carved into her skin were getting darker and deeper. Charms can't last forever, though. It was almost a year to the day Voldemort had been killed when the charms vanished, revealing the marks.

At first, Hermione put it down to going so long without seeing the marks; she hadn't removed the magic covering her skin for a whole year. She tried to convince herself that she hadn't remembered how bad it they looked. It was getting deeper by the day though so she knew things weren't right. So in true Hermione fashion, she took to researching, pouring over vast amounts of books to find the answer, but they showed nothing.

All of that, the worsening of her 'mudblood' wound and the fact she'd failed for the first time in her researching was the reason she ended up sitting in a Medi-witch's office. Her legs had shaken the whole way to St. Mungo's, it had taken her a whole week to work up the courage to come. Hermione had found someone that specialised in inflictions caused by dark magic. The specialist was her best bet to finding out what was going on. She wasn't stupid; Hermione knew something was wrong, and whatever the medi-witch knew about the marks, it wasn't going to be good.

Hermione could tell by the witch's face when she first laid eyes upon the markings, even the hesitant way she touched it through her glove. The Medi-witch took a tube of blood, giving Hermione a sympathetic look before she rushed off to test the sample.

It had felt like hours before the witch returned, but in reality it hadn't been more than fifteen minutes. The witch's grave expression told Hermione everything. It wasn't going to be good news. The Medi-witch took a seat on in her chair, gesturing for Hermione to take the opposite seat.

"I tested the blood," the Medi-witch explained, shuffling slightly on the seat. She was young, newly qualified by Hermione's guess and a bit star struck from having one-third of the golden trio or 'heroes of the war' in her office. "I'm afraid Miss Granger the news isn't good. It's hard to tell you the exact curse without the knife, but going by the best sources I could find, I think it's a blood linked curse." The Medi-witch gestured for Hermione's hand, pushing the sleeve up far enough to reveal the black and deepened 'mudblood' on her skin. "As you know, the Lestrange family had a grudge against muggleborns; the family put many curses on their things years ago to stop thieves or rather 'muggleborns' from stealing from their vast wealth. I know, it's silly and prejudiced, but it's what they did. The curse on the knife that inflicted these wounds is directed at muggleborns. The curse is slow to develop, which is evident by the fact you're still here a year on. This curse is cruel and harsh, it slowly develops by removing the magical blood within your bloodstream, turning you into a squib. Without the magical blood in your system to keep the curse at bay, your heart will stop beating. Your blood as a muggleborn is a mystery; we can't work out how muggleborns suddenly gain magical powers, and people are still researching. Muggleborns are just as powerful and strong, but you didn't get magic from your parents, it just seems to happen are random.

"Those with magical parents have magic in their blood and their DNA. Their abilities are linked closely to their family. We call it a magical core because it's an inheritance of their parents, something they/children have before they develop and learn their own style of magic. Somehow the Lestrange curse has a way of attacking those without magical DNA, without the core magic they inherit from their parents. The Lestrange family specifically designed it so it would affect only muggleborns."

"How long do I have?" Hermione asked, not shedding a tear as she looked into the young witch's eyes. She knew it was going to be bad, but she hadn't expected the news to be so bad. "I need time to... I need time to prepare those I love. I need a time frame."

The Medi-witch seemed hesitant, glancing around at the closed door. "I really shouldn't tell you this because it's still being researched and there isn't any substantial proof that it's even true. " The witch looked at Hermione, concern shining in her eyes. "I'm muggleborn, and I know what would have happened to my family if it hadn't been for you, Miss Granger, you and your friends. What I say doesn't leave this office, you understand?"

Hermione pulled her arm from the witches grip, leaning forward in her chair and dropped her voice. "There's a way to halt the curse?"

"My boyfriend works down in research, he tells me a few things, and that's partly why I know so much about it. We've also had a lot of deaths over the years due to the Lestrange or Malfoy heirlooms coming into contact with muggleborns. If you tell anyone about this, I would be in so much trouble. It's top secret, do you understand?" The nod from Hermione seemed to be the only indication the Medi-witch needed because she quickly pressed on. "There is a theory that muggleborns who conceive a magical child would be forever connected with magic. The mixture of magical children within the womb of a muggleborn can alter the mother's blood, slightly. It's only a small amount of magic that enters the mother's bloodstream during pregnancy, but nevertheless it's believed that it works. You're blood changes a fraction, but it's enough to get rid of the curse because you don't have just muggleborn blood running through your system, but also the fetus' half-blood magic. "

"I've never heard of this before, though," Hermione pressed on. "The idea that blood and magic are so closely connected, people have been cursed like I have? The newspapers haven't..."

"The newspapers have been forced not to cover the stories by the Minister of Magic himself. Can you imagine the problems if people knew? We've got a basement full of witches and wizards affected by blood curses from the purebloods. The research is too early in development, and it's not going to be trialled until a few months time. I'm afraid you won't make it that long, you need to conceive well before then to outlast this." The witch straightened in her seat. "Miss Granger, you've been a hero and an idol to me for two years, I simply can't let you die. You need to leave and protect this secret. If the Ministry works know you have the curse, they'll quarantine you. They're scared the curse can develop and spread to others. They are worried the curse can develop into a virus and kill every muggleborn."

Hermione's eyes widened. She had expected bad news, but not this. She had never expected it to be like this. She stood up, the sound of her chair scraping along the tiled floor chafed against her pebbled skin. She felt like a ghost as she moved towards the door, her hands shook as she grasped the door handle. "What is your name?" Hermione asked, turning to face the witch.

"Rosa Greenwood." The Medi-witch stated.

"Goodbye, Rosa."

There was a flash of light; the Medi-witch slumped forward into a dreamless sleep, with no memory of the last twenty minutes. As Hermione tucked her wand away, she left through the door in the hope of finding a way to live or a way to say goodbye.

Chapter Text

 

 

A few days after Hermione's devastating diagnosis and things weren't going well. Sperm donors weren't as well-known in the magical community, quite surprising considering how advanced their research was when compared to muggles. Apparently, the Wizarding world believed in keeping things natural, producing children the natural way. Hermione had considered asking a pureblood for a sample, but due to some light reading (seven books only, in fact), there was some indications that a child conceived by an insemination had a 20% chance of resulting in a squib. That was two in ten children; Hermione couldn't take those odds. A squib child didn't have a magical core; they had a fault in their genetics so carrying a squib wouldn't work to save Hermione. The thought of having to get rid of a child after finding out it was a squib broke her heart. She couldn't do that to a child of hers. That left the traditional baby making way.

Hermione wasn't a prude. Sex was a healthy and natural thing. Besides, she wasn't a virgin, despite the rumors. Hermione and Ron had slept together shortly after the war, and things hadn't worked out. There was a brief encounter with Krum when he returned to Britain for international relations, and they shared a few night of sexual encounters that in Hermione's opinion were a complete flop.

Nevertheless, sex wasn't the problem for Hermione. Finding a pureblood up for the challenge was. There weren't many pureblood families within Britain or even worldwide. Ron was currently dating Luna Lovegood and despite the fact that Hermione knew he would do anything to help her, she couldn't do that to him or his relationship. So Hermione first port of call was well and truly out the window. Neville was dating Hannah; Draco was dating Pansy and honestly, Hermione couldn't even bring herself to think about him being an option. Most of the purebloods her age were dating, dead or up to god knows what. Hermione hadn't told anyone yet; she couldn't face telling the people she cared about that she was dying. Especially after everyone was still grieving over the loss of so many people last year.

Nevertheless, the desperation to find a pureblood was how Hermione found herself in the Hogshead, in the very back of the room waiting for a wizard. He was thirty-eight, previously married and more importantly, pureblood. She had traced his timeline through the Black family; he was a very distant cousin and had to be burned off the family tree when he married a half-blood witch when he was only young. It was better than nothing.

"Got your drink lassie," the man stated, taking a seat and pushing the firewhisky across the table. It wasn't the drink she'd asked for, but nevermind. "You're looking good, after everything. Heard rumors you were pretty messed up with all the shit you did. I never listened to them, though. A beautiful girl like you couldn't be that bad looking under those robes."

Hermione pursed her lips, resisting the fiery comeback that was dying to come out. Troy Tumble, the man opposite her, didn't have the qualities Hermione would choose in a partner. He was rude, egotistical and had a narrow-minded view on women. He was a man that believed men worked and women cooked. That was something that would never stand when it came to Hermione. She wasn't looking for a husband, though; she was in need of a baby, nothing more.

"You shouldn't listen to rumors, they're never right," Hermione replied, taking her drink and having a small sip. "Can I ask what you do for work Troy?"

"I work the market," Troy replied, a smirk on his lips as he picked up his drink. "All hush hush of course, but I have plenty of contacts, and people know they can come to old Troy when they need something desperately. I earn a pretty penny that way too."

It took Hermione a great effort not to roll her eyes. He was a black market seller, just what she was looking for in the father of her child. It was hopeless; she was never going to find someone to help.

Hermione glanced up in time to see two ginger men twins and a slightly taller black man walk through the door, all of them glancing Hermione's way in surprise.

Fred, George and Lee made their way in her direction, sitting on the table just next to her. George's eyes flicked over Troy in amusement, his eyes twinkling with mischief as he finally met Hermione's gaze.

"You pulled Granger?" George asked, raising an eyebrow at Troy.

"Or is it business?" Fred said, "Granger never pulls, except for the occasional muscle."

"I won her round," Troy said proudly, puffing out his chest slightly in front of the younger boys. "she couldn't resist my charm, of course."

"That's it exactly," Fred agreed. "Poor girl didn't stand a chance."

Hermione sent a pleading look in the boys' direction, but they were having far too much fun at Hermione's expense. It was finally Lee who stood up, giving Hermione a wink before he placed his hand on Troy's shoulder. "As fun as this might be for you lot, I don't like strange men sitting with my girlfriend unless it's innocent. Do we have a problem here pal? I'm not really in the mood to defend my honor and all that," Lee told the man, his eyes stern as he watched Troy.

"Damn girl," Troy replied with a scowl at Hermione. "Took me down the garden path, didn't you? I'd watch this one mate, not loyal in the slight with the things she was just offering me." Troy stood up, clapped a hand on Lee's shoulder and went off to the bar to find a table alone.

"You'll have to keep an eye on her Lee."

"Don't want the misses going astray."

Hermione glared at the twins, pushing away from her table. "Thank you, Lee, as misguided as your attempt was to save me, it was very much appreciated. Thank you anyway." She pushed passed the boys, ignoring their shouts and cat calls as she made her way out of the pub.

As horrid and unconnected as she was to Troy, he had been an option. A poor one at that, but Hermione didn't have much of a choice left. The nurse wasn't able to give her a timeline, and the sooner she got pregnant; the quicker the fetus' blood could reduce the curse and put it at bay.

"Oi!" A voice called as Hermione wiped away a tear of frustration. "Hold up Granger."

She turned to see one of the twins running after her, a nervous smile on his face when he finally caught up with her. "We were joking you know? You weren't serious about that bloke, were you?" Fred asked, his eyes roamed her face, apparently shocked by the falling tears. "Hermione, we were messing around. Lee thought you wanted to be saved from that bloke, not from us. I can go back and tell him it was a..."

"It's okay Fred, thank you," Hermione cut off. Ever since the war, it was a lot easier to tell the twins apart. George had lost an ear, and Fred had a few faint scars from the collapse of the war. A faint line ran down his neck and his chest, or at least the little chest Hermione could see at the top of his shirt. He never talked about it, and everyone knew not to ask. "I was being silly; I know he wasn't the type of man I usually go for. It's fine, join your friends Fred."

"You know George and I lie for a living, don't you? Spend our days tricking kids and adults. You will have to try a lot harder than that."

"I'm having a bit of trouble that's all; I need to find someone with the skills to help me, and Troy was one of those people. It's fine though Fred, honestly. I'm busy, and I need to get going. See you on Sunday for dinner at the Burrow?" Hermione told him. She quickly called a goodbye as she walked off again; not turning to see if he'd bought her lie and went back into the pub. She made her way down the street and was just about to cross the road leading to her apartment when a hand grabbed her, pulling her into the alley beside the road. "What are you... who the hell..." Hermione had spluttered before a hand clapped over her mouth. Her eyes widened as Fred and George stood in front of her, the latter's hand over her mouth.

"We've always been one for big dramatics, Granger," George grinned, flashing his twin a look. "Old Freddy here said you had a problem, something that weird bloke could help with and apparently you didn't even ask us first. Hurts our feelings, especially since we're the best troublemakers around. We have a few connections with the black market if you're making one of those illegal spells of yours."

"Going to have to remove your hand if you want a reply, George," Fred advised, flashing his twin a smirk. George never got the chance though because Hermione clamped her teeth into George's hand, causing him to yell out in pain.

"Do that again and I swear, I will tell your mother," Hermione threatened, glaring at them both. They both gulped, clearly worried about that threat.

"We only want to help," George offered, stepping back slightly.

"Yeah Granger. Plus you hurt our feelings going to that old crook when you never asked us first," Fred agreed.

"It's not something you two could help with, believe me, I've thought long and hard about it. I really must be going," Hermione told them, taking a step to the side to escape. Fred, however, grabbed Hermione's arm to stop her, not realising he'd wrapped his fingers around the cursed mark. Hermione hissed in pain and Fred quickly dropped his hold.

"Blimey Hermione, I didn't mean to..." Fred broke off, flashing a worried glance towards his twin. "Give us a look Hermione; I know a few healing spells."

"It's nothing," Hermione told him, stepping away from them and out of the alley. "Sunday? Your mother really misses you two. Even Percy has been coming over for lunch."

"We'll be there," both of the boys replied.

It was almost lunch time when the letter came that Sunday. Hermione was at the Burrow in the Weasleys' Kitchen when the owl arrived with the reply. She'd written to a man in France; their pureblood son was looking for a bride, someone to carry on their bloodline as he was having a few problems getting out and meeting someone. It wasn't the best solution, but Hermione was running out of answers quickly. She grabbed the letter, quickly excused herself from the kitchen and made her way into the garden to read the letter.

'Dear Miss Granger,

Firstly, I'm profoundly sorry for my bad English. I am aware things have changed, and we are one of those pureblood families wishing to change our views and opinions. However, my husband is still learning to get over his biased views and would very much like to carry on the pureblood line with our son. I'm very sorry and hope we show no offense to you.

Sincerely

Ester Rosabell'

Hermione sobbed. That was it, the last hope she had of finding someone. She'd tracked every family and begged them to help, but most had turned down her offer, and the rest were currently dating, engaged or dead. She had no one left. The Weasley boys were all dating, except for Charlie but he wasn't even in the country, and Ron had told her a few years ago that he'd seen his big brother kissing a boy when Charlie had been a teenager, but Ron was still firm in the belief that his brother was gay. Despite the fact, Charlie refused to talk about it.

"Granger," A voice called behind her. She quickly tried to wipe her tears, pulling her wand out of her sleeve to vanish the tears, but someone grabbed her hand to stop her. "You can tell me the truth about what's going on. Someone threatened you?"

Hermione turned to Fred, a tear slipping down her face before she finally held out the letter to him. She watched as he read through the letter, confusion was written all over his face. "That was my last chance; I've got no one left."

"To marry? I know Harry and Ginny are getting Married Hermione, but you can't be that desperate to get in there first. "

"It's got nothing to do with marriage! I don't care if I never get married. I just don't want to..." Hermione broke. It was too much; she couldn't do it. She couldn't go around pretending nothing was wrong with her life when she was so limited in time. The mark on her arm had been hurting last night, and Hermione took that as a sign that it was getting close, her time was running out. Even her magic had weakened this week. She was dying.

Fred glanced around the garden, making sure no one else was around before taking a seat beside Hermione. He shuffled on the wall to get comfortable before he started rolling up his sleeves and turning to Hermione. "You remember how I spent three months with the Medi-witches after the battle?" Fred asked. It was rhetorical; he knew that she knew. Everyone did. "It was pretty dark back then; I had a lot of things going on and the witches were just trying to keep me alive. They had my family around begging for updates every day, and I made them lie for me, tell my family I was too sick for visitors. You know why I did that?"

"You needed space?" Hermione offered, turning her head to meet Fred's gaze.

"No. I got my head around what happened pretty quickly; I just couldn't be the guy they all expected me to be. I couldn't make jokes about the wall, about how you can't get rid of me that easily. I couldn't do anything but feel sorry for myself. I'm not like my brother," Fred told her. He looked at her, his eyes unblinking as his hands reached up and started undoing the buttons on his shirt. Hermione's eyes widened at the gesture, but neither of them spoke as he popped the last button.

Fred's chest was scared. A line ran from the bottom of his abdomen, just above his belt to the top of his chest. It wasn't deep, and it wasn't that thick, but it was noticeable. It looked like Fred had been sliced in two, but the line had started to fade over time. It would never go; that much was clear and it would always be there as a reminder.

"Only George has ever seen this," Fred told her as he dropped his hands to his knees. He wasn't self-conscious, but he hated to be on display. "We all have our troubles Granger, George has problems hearing, he's got some muggle hearing aid he's supposed to wear in his good ear, but he doesn't. Ron still has nightmares every night, and I know because he comes over to our flat in the middle of the night in a state. We're all having our problems. Fearing being alone isn't wrong, it's human."

Hermione glanced up, blinking back the tears as Fred buttoned up his shirt. Without looking at him, she rolled up her sleeve, the mark Bellatrix had left behind on display. She heard Fred's gasp at the dark and profound mark. It looked bad, horrid.

"You don't believe the words, do you?" Fred questioned, frowning in confusion.

"It's killing me," Hermione whispered, blinking back more tears. She felt Fred's hand on her shoulder. "And I don't mean that figuratively."

Chapter Text

 

 

 

Fred never asked anything; he didn't stare or comment about Hermione's announcement. He just placed his hand over Hermione's, and they sat in silence. It was like he just knew she needed comfort, without the awkward talk that would result in a lot of tears. Hermione had never witnessed one of the twins so silent, and it was a pleasant first-time experience. Despite what people said about them, they did care about others and could be serious when the time called for it. After thirty minutes of sitting on the bench, Fred's fingers lightly tracing the lines on Hermione's hand, a voice called them for dinner.

Hermione pulled her hand away from Fred, not daring to look at him as she walked up the garden path and went for dinner. She felt awkward throughout dinner, half expecting him to comment, stare or say something in front of everyone else. Except he didn't. Fred put on his happy cheery face and teased each family member, except her. George occasionally chimed in and for the first time Hermione noticed that George was quieter when more people spoke at once, he only spoke up when there was one or two people talking. Hermione realised he struggled to follow the conversation when it was noisy, and none of the other Weasleys noticed.

After eating more than she should have, most of the Weasleys' retired to the sitting room and left Hermione in the kitchen. Mrs. Weasley went with Ginny to do more wedding planning, telling Hermione to leave the dishes. She enjoyed doing it the muggle way, so she ignored Mrs. Weasley's comment and got to work.

"So, what do you need?" A voice asked from behind Hermione. She turned to find George sitting on the worktop opposite, Fred leaning against the same bench just a few inches down from his twin. George raised an eyebrow and continued. "What do you need on the black market for that cursed arm?"

Hermione's eyes quickly flashed to Fred's in shock. She knew how close the boys were, and she should have expected Fred to tell his twin, but she couldn't help the feeling of disappointment that he hadn't kept her secret.

"Don't look like that Hermione," Fred dismissed with a roll of his eyes. "George is my twin; we tell each other everything, and if we're going to fix that thing on your arm, we'll need him."

"Freddy here jumps the gun a bit," George offered as some sort of explanation. "Has a habit of going for things without proper planning, gets overly excited. I like to think of myself as his Wrangler, keeping him focused and on the right path." Fred nudged his twin but never commented.

"I don't need anything, Fred caught me at a weak moment, and I would appreciate it if we could all forget it happened. I was overreacting," Hermione said, turning back to the dishes in the sink. She could feel the heat of their stares as she continued to scrub the dishes. They never spoke, and three bowls later it was really starting to grate on her nerves. She dropped the current bowl in her hand back into the water and turned with a glare at them. The twin hadn't moved from their spot, merely watching Hermione with a smug expression. Honestly! "Will you stop? Don't you two have something better to do with your day then watch me scrub pots and pans? I don't want your help; I don't need it, and frankly I'm having a bad enough day without you two trying to break me down. Or whatever this silent staring thing is trying to accomplish."

Hermione turned back to the dishes and scrubbed them a lot harder than before, taking out her anger on the pots and pans. She waited a few moments and the twins still hadn't spoken. She was fed up with them! With a heat of anger, she turned and threw the dishcloth at them, missing her mark by inches as George caught it and laughed. "It's not funny! Get out of my way or I swear, I'll tell your mother."

"She plays dirty," Fred commented, raising an eyebrow.

"Filthy. Doesn't surprise us, though, does it, Freddy?" George agreed. He jumped off the bench and walked slowly towards Hermione. He stopped only a few inches from her; their bodies were close together as he threw the cloth over her shoulder and back into the dish bowl. "Now, are we going to talk like adults or do Fred and I have to spend the next week following you around to stare you out?"

"We don't get much entertainment; we would do it," Fred chimed in.

"True," George nodded. "Verity is in the shop all week; we could put some holiday time in."

Hermione really hated boys sometimes.

0o0o0o0o0o0o0

Hermione had no idea why she caved in, but she did. She waved a goodbye to the Weasleys and waited at the end of the Burrow's path. Twenty minutes later the boys came out as well and together they went to the Twins' flat, just above the joke shop.

It took three hours, but Hermione finally caved in. She had to tell someone; she needed help. The twins were the last people she had expected to spill her feelings and secrets to, but she did. Hermione cried at the end of it, leaving out the part where she altered the Medi-witch's memory. Her only rational reason behind telling the twins was because of their pureblood status. They were dating, she knew that because she'd seen both of them bring their dates around to the Burrow only a few weeks ago and George was engaged to Angelina. However, the twins were pureblood, and she was fairly sure they knew more people, related or not, who were also pureblood. People that could be an option for Hermione and would be willing to help her.

The boys said nothing while Hermione told the story, they only sat either side of her and listened. They never butted in or cracked a joke, something that felt very strange when around Fred and George.

"So that's it," Hermione shrugged, holding back the tears. "I've done the best I can, but in the end, I guess Bellatrix really did beat me. I've always been so proud of the fact that she didn't, that I was able to overcome the witch that hurt and injured so many people, killed so many that I knew and cared about. You know? The fact that I was muggleborn, and she couldn't get me to crack. It's a sick type of satisfaction, but it helped me sleep at night."

"It's not a sick satisfaction," George offered, finally speaking after going so long without. "She believed muggleborns were the weakest, the fact that she hadn't been able to break you probably made her so mad, and it's probably the reason she carved that offensive word into your arm."

"You need a baby then?" Fred confirmed, glaring at his twin when he rolled his eyes. "Shut up George; I'm just trying to get back to the point here. So, you need a kid from a pureblood wizard. You've been to every wizard within Britain and a fair amount outside of Britain."

"She's missed a few Freddy."

"Exactly my thinking, George."

"You think she knows?"

"Not likely, unless Ronnikins told her."

"That's doubtful."

Hermione glanced at the boys, eyes narrowed as they spoke in some type of riddle she couldn't understand. "Are you going to decode whatever that was for me?" Hermione asked, relaxing back against the couch. Her arms folded as her eyes flickered between the two boys. She had no idea what they were talking about, but then again people rarely did keep up with the twins conversations.

George leaned back too, giving her a smirk as he replied, "Fred and I know something that might help, a bit of a long shot, but if you're on a timescale it might be helpful, considering." George looked at his brother giving Fred the nod before continuing. "You heard about Mum having twin brothers right?"

"Yes, I've read about them, they were part of the original Order, right?" Hermione asked, leaning forward slightly. She devoured information, even facts that she really wouldn't need in the future. After Sirius had escaped during their Hogwarts time, Hermione had studied each and every past Order member. She liked to know things; knowledge was power. She convinced herself that if she knew the old members than a surprise such as Sirius would never happen again.

"Yeah, they were. Mum said they died just before we were born," Fred explained, glancing towards his twin. "They went down fighting, taking a load of dark wizards with them. They were powerful; Mum always used to tell us stories, George and me. Especially about her brothers, seeing as they were twins too." He paused slightly, thinking over his words which was so unlike Fred. "So, you know magical babies affect people? The sharing of blood can affect the mother and such; that's the reason you need to carry a magic baby. You share its blood; you absorb some of its magic during the pregnancy because you get some of the baby's blood.."

Hermione nodded, "Yes, the Medi-witch explained it to me. Muggleborns don't have an inherited magical core."

"Twins are different," George offered. "That's what mom has always said, she's no Medi-witch, and she doesn't know all the facts and stuff. But she's got the experience; she's carried us and had twin brothers. Mom always said that twins are more powerful, have a different sort of magic about them, even as babies. She thinks that because there are two of us, the magic we share in the womb mingles and makes it stronger while we grow.

"Her magic was off while she was pregnant with us," Fred went on to explain. "She was always setting things on fire, even when she was asleep. I'm not saying we're more powerful. We just have a stronger core magic, more potent energy source. It comes easier for us than anyone else. How else do you think we've done so well without picking up a book?"

"Yeah, we didn't just get away with so much because of our charm you know," George joked, nudging Hermione, who had a smile on her face.

Hermione bit her lip, considering it. She hadn't read anything about twins, but then again twins in the Wizarding world weren't overly common. There were plenty around, but nowhere as near as many as the Muggle community. And honestly, it did make sense. The boys never seemed to study much at Hogwarts, but they still did well. She'd witnessed Fred doing plenty of wandless magic without much effort. Hermione had always been impressed with that because it took witches and wizards months and months to learn that skill. She'd always found it hard to believe that either of the twins had been that dedicated. "So," Hermione spoke, glancing at the twins. "You're telling me that your mother thinks you two have stronger core magic because you're twins? You have more magical energy?"

"Always so smart Granger," George joked with a roll of his eyes. "Yes, Mum isn't some muggle scientist or medi-master, but you know what they say, Mums always know best. Besides, makes sense doesn't it?"

"And Fred's wandless magic is just... natural?"

"You really think I poured over books and practiced to do that?" Fred grinned. "One morning in the fifth year I wanted a hangover potion, but couldn't find my wand, so I simply..." Fred waved his hand, the same actions he'd do except without the wand and a potion came zooming out of the kitchen and straight into his hand. "That's pretty much how it happened. I never even read a book on it, Granger.

"This doesn't help me, though, I understand what you're both saying, you have a stronger magical core, and that's fantastic for the both of you. However, I'm muggle born, and apparently, they have no idea where our magic comes from, so I need to get pregnant. Thank you for the knowledge, but it's hard enough trying to get pregnant with one baby, never mind two," Hermione explained, going to stand up. Both the twins grabbed her shoulder, keeping her in the seat between them. "Yes?"

"You don't need to have twins Granger, that wasn't the point," Fred said, with a glance to his twin.

"Fred and I have stronger core magic than the usual pureblood wizard, so our kids probably will too, even half-blood children will be pretty strong," George continued. They both saw the moment when Hermione's realisation took effect, soon followed by shock. "We're offering to help here Hermione."

Hermione didn't speak. She couldn't think of anything to say. They were offering her the chance to have a baby, with one of them being the father. It wasn't like offering to help out on rent payments; it was a living and breathing human, something to tie you with another person for the rest of your life. They wouldn't be just providing the sperm; they would be involved in raising a child with her. At first, she just wanted a one night stand, a way to get pregnant without having to tie herself to another person. She knew it was wrong to keep a father from a child, but the kind of men Hermione had been hanging out with as potential fathers weren't influences she wanted in her baby's life. Fred and George were good men, family men. Weasleys were the closest knitted family you could get, they all shared such strong family values, and Hermione knew without a doubt they would be involved; expect to participate in her child's life.

Then there was the sex. Hermione wasn't a virgin, but she felt like one as she sat between Fred and George with a blush on her face. They wanted her to have sex with them, or rather, they were willing enough to do it to achieve the necessary outcome.

Someone was panting, breathing heavy. Wait. It was her.

"Breath slowly Hermione," Fred prompted, pushing slightly on her back to help her lean forward. It was enough to help Hermione gather her thoughts and get the air in her lungs to calm down.

"You don't know what you're offering," Hermione finally spoke up. "It has to be conceived naturally; squibs are common in medical conceptions."

"Yeah Granger, we know all that."

"And your girlfriends?" Hermione asked, trying not to sound so snappy. She was just attempting to make them see how ridiculous this was. "What about Angelina and Katie?"

"I mean... I wasn't expecting them to join in, but if you're into that..." Fred replied but was quickly cut off when Hermione pushed a well-aimed elbow into his guts, cutting him off.

George shook his head at his twin, giving Hermione a smile before he spoke up. "What my rude twin meant was, we're both single Hermione. Ang and I broke up; we had a bit of a misunderstanding. Fred and Katie are just the occasional bed warmers, more so after a few drinks. We've thought this through; we know what we're offering here. We want to be involved; we're willing to step up as fathers to our child. A kid that you need. And let's be honest, you don't have many other options, do you? "

"Didn't Dumbledore have a brother?" Fred offered with a grin. "He'd be pureblood."

0o0o0o0o0o0o0

Hermione asked for some time to think it over, but they all knew that just meant she needed time to accept it.

George was right; there wasn't any other option and to be honest, Fred and George were a good choice. Much better than the other wizards she'd been considering. It was easier than going through a bunch of one night stands with men she didn't even like. After a week of getting her head around it, Hermione finally agreed to the twins' offer. It was an excellent offer, and they would make brilliant fathers. There was a lot to talk about, though, and Hermione insisted on all of them getting medical checks before they went through the details and worked out what would happen if she did, in fact, get pregnant.

Fred walked out of a room in the doctor's office. He placed a white pot on the bench for the nurse and took a seat in the waiting room beside his twin and Hermione. "Muggles are weird," Fred muttered, glancing around the room rather uncomfortable. "I've never done that before."

"I should hope not," George grinned over at his twin.

Hermione scoffed at them both. All they had to do was provide a sample; their part was very simple. Hermione had to be poked and prodded. After finally agreeing to make a baby together, Hermione had insisted they all got muggle check-ups to ensure they were able to produce children. It would have been a bit pointless otherwise. "Your part of the tests is simple, I don't know how you can even complain," Hermione said with a roll of her eyes.

"You want me to hold your hand, Hermione?" Fred offered with a smile.

"It's not like we won't be seeing you naked in the future," George agreed. "We are playing loving boyfriends, makes sense for us to be there to hold your hand."

"For moral support of course."

"And to make sure the doctor doesn't get too handsy with our girlfriend."

"That too."

Thankfully a nurse came and called Hermione's name for her turn at the medical checks. She quickly stood up, wanting to get away from the twins and their teasing. They'd been shown some leaflets by the nurse regarding the exam; both had been quite shocked and concerned by the medical exams Hermione was going to have. To check her ovaries, the nurse had to get very close and personal, something the Healers in the Wizarding world never did. Turning around, she lowered her voice as she spoke to the twins. "If either of you follow me into that room, I'll hex you, I mean it."

"Bye, sweetheart!" Fred called just as Hermione turned and walked away.

"See you soon baby!" George joined in; both of them were getting far too into their character roles. "We can practice the real thing tonight?"

Chapter Text

 


It was a little over two weeks when the results were received by Hermione and the twins. All three had good results and were fertile, which was good news all round. However, it didn't answer the one question Hermione blushed thinking about each time, never daring to ask the twins. She had assumed that whoever had the best sperm count would have been the one she would be intimate with and, therefore, become the father of the baby. Muggles DNA tests were pretty similar to the Wizarding world's; both couldn't tell the father of the baby if both possible fathers happened to be a set of identical twins.

It was all very confusing, especially as the twins never seemed to bring the subject up. Maybe they just assumed Hermione would pick one of them? Could she even choose between Fred and George? It wasn't like she knew them all that well. George was the calmer more sensible twin, but Fred was more open about things. They both seemed to balance each other out. Anyway, all that could be sorted later. She still needed to go through details like that with the twins, but Hermione suspected she'd need a strong beverage to gather the confidence for that kind of discussion with the best-known jokers and pranksters.

With everything verified that they were able become pregnant and were fertile, Hermione started on a course of potions that increased the chances of pregnancy. It wouldn't affect the likelihood of a squib child, but it would mean Hermione would produce more eggs each month. It was the best and only thing she could do to hurry things along.

Her magic was already affected more each day as she became weaker. It was really starting to affect her on a daily basis, especially at work. Hermione worked in the Ministry as a Magical Creature's Law Registrar. Which basically meant any and all things creature-like in the Wizarding world was managed by Hermione. It was a job offered to her by Kingsley after Hermione fought for the right for werewolves to marry shortly after the war ended. She dealt with aggressive Wizards as well as magical creatures on a daily basis, and her safety was paramount. Not everyone was happy about the things she was doing to improve the lives of the lesser cared about creatures.

The door of Hermione's office creaked open and Linda, Hermione's receptionist, popped her head around the door with a smile on her face. "I've got a client meeting scheduled, and he's just turned up in the lobby to see you. Would you like me to reschedule? It was rather a last minute appointment, but I can change things if you already have something planned?" The young blond asked with an apologetic smile.

"No," Hermione replied, shuffling the stacks of paper on her desk. "I was just reading through a few personal items, so send him in. Can you make sure to leave his wand outside? I've got a bit of a headache, so I don't think I'm up to a dueling match if he's another one of those anti-creature protesters."

Linda assured her boss she would and closed the door in search of the client. He must have been rather eager for the meeting because no sooner had Hermione turned to grab her files, the door opened, and she heard the sound of heavy feet making their way over to the desk.

"I got a creature problem," a voice Hermione recognised spoke. "About my height, steals biscuits each morning despite me being the one that buys them and his breath is something of a monster too. Can we register him or shall we just execute him? "

Hermione turned; quickly glancing at the ears of the person in front of her to make sure it was, in fact, George she was speaking to, her suspicions had been right. "As bad mannered as your twin may be, he doesn't qualify for the Creatures' Act. You'll have to take that up with family relations," Hermione offered with a smile. "Ron however..."

"Would come under the Dangerous Creatures Act?" George prompted with a smile. He leaned across the desk, grabbing one of the mints out of her bowl and threw it in the air. He caught it in his mouth with a slight head tilt, totally at ease and practiced with the game. "So Miss Granger, seeing as this is, in fact, a business meeting, are we going to get down to business?"

Hermione raised an eyebrow, a slight blush on her face as she took in George's words and the smirk on his face. It told her more than she needed to know. She knew exactly what kind of business George had in mind. "This is hardly the time to discuss that George."

"Exactly my thoughts. However, here Freddie and I are waiting for our fair, fertile maiden to turn up at our doorstep only to find out she's working double shifts for the last two weeks," George counted. "We need to talk Hermione; you can't keep avoiding this. Freddie and I are good at breaking the tension, you know? We're not going to open the door in our birthday suits. We can talk or rather joke for a few hours with you and work everything out. "

She let out a sigh. George was right; she had been avoiding them, and there was no denying it. To be perfectly honest, she really was nervous to work out the rest of the details with them. It wasn't such an easy thing to ask or discuss. "I'm not a prude, but to talk about something like that, it sets me on edge. I like things to happen naturally; that's how I've always been intimate in relationships, and this will be anything but natural."

"We'll both make you comfortable, Fred and I will do whatever it takes to make you feel relaxed and enjoy yourself. We've never had any bad reviews from the ladies if that's what you're worried about Hermione," George offered. "Actually, that's what something I wanted to talk to you about. Freddie and I were talking, and with you being in such a time crunch. We thought it might be best if we both helped you. Move things along a bit faster. It's up to you Hermione, but honestly, it's something Freddie and I have done before so we wouldn't feel awkward."

"You and Fred have..."

"Shared a woman," George replied with a shrug, leaning forward to steal another mint. "Several actually, we're very in tune with each other as you might know. Helps the lady and you'll be surprised how many requests for a threesome we get. Now, I'm not saying let's jump straight into it. What I am saying is let's take it one day at a time, get comfortable with each other and over time we can have some fun. Get your mind off the goal and you might achieve it a lot quicker than you ever imagined."

Hermione was quite taken aback by the news. She had, of course, heard rumors about the twins sharing women in Hogwarts. It was something Lavender had pressed Hermione about, despite Hermione not knowing anything about it. Everyone assumed she did, considering how close to the Weasleys she was. However, Hermione Granger was raised in a rather strict household when it came to things like that. The Wizarding world found it completely normal for triads to become part of everyday society, the Muggle world was very much behind the times. "What about the baby? You two may never know who the real father is. How would we work that out? Not that I'm accepting this, of course. It's so much to think about. It might seem perfectly reasonable to you George, but for a muggleborn, it's completely out there."

"You're in our world now," George quipped. "And besides, Freddie and I share everything. I've already bagged the name dad; Fred's trying to come up with a better name than that for the kiddie to call him." George sat up in his chair as he caught Hermione's eyes. "We are serious about this Hermione; I swear it. Do you think we'd risk our Mum finding out about all this in months to come without working out all the details? Fred and I would share father duty, instead of two parents, the child would have three dedicated parents. We have the money to put in our share of things; we are ready for this, and we will love this kid Hermione. Everyone has their problems; maybe it's the thing the Weasley family needs to bring them all back together again. "

Hermione blanched at the thought of telling Mrs. Weasley. She really was like a mother to Hermione and the idea of telling her was a lot worse than she ever imagined telling her own parents. "I'm nervous. I've never been out of control from anything in my life and doing this... it's something so beyond control that it sets my teeth on edge. I can't research it. I can't set a list of rules because there isn't the time for it. I'm losing my magic and each day is harder than the last."

Hermione tried to fight back the tears, but the potions were making her more emotional and just that morning she'd sobbed over her burnt toast. She had no way of controlling herself when it came to such an emotional subject. When a tear slipped out of the corner of Hermione's eye and trailed its way down her cheek, George stood from his seat and made his way around the desk. Without speaking he held his hand out to Hermione, pulling her from her seat when she took it. "George, what are you..." Hermione cut herself off with a loud squeak as George shifted her onto the edge of the desk. He spread her legs and stepped closer, his hand reaching out and wiping the tear away.

"You can be scared of dying," George told her, his voice soft and low. "You can even be angry at Bellatrix or society for that matter. But you never have to be afraid of us Hermione." He held up her hand, threading his fingers through hers and Hermione's breathing hitched at the tension coiling between them. George moved closer, his other hand going to her hip as he moved his lips just below her ear, almost touching the skin of her neck. "I see you, Hermione. I've barely touched you, and your body is already on fire. Your breath is shallow; your legs are shaking, and you're about to bite through that bottom lip if you don't release it very soon. And you know what else?"

Hermione released her bottom lip, her legs shaking with restraint. She felt her body reacting to maleness that was George Weasley, up close and intimate with her. He had only touched her hand, and already she felt it, the tension and need in the room just from being so close. "George," Hermione whispered, her free hand going to grab his shoulder.

"You don't have a bra on," George noted, the firm peaks of her nipples coming through her work shirt. Hermione didn't have the chance to check though because George swept in, his lips moving forward to press against her neck. His grip on her waist tightened, and he pulled her closer to the edge of the desk. "Sigillare," George whispered between kisses to her neck and the blinds in the office sealed shut, the door automatically locked into place. The twins really were exquisite wizards.

It was pure passion between George and Hermione, the tension and build up to this made it all the more exciting. Hermione felt a flutter at the bottom of her stomach at his touch. George wasn't like the former boys she'd been with. Hermione's experience had been filled with probing hands, fumbling movements and touches that usually only brought pain and frustration. George though, he was experienced. Every touch was unwasted, as if it was meant to be there; he acted in a way that made Hermione think he knew her body, despite the few seconds they'd been together. George pulled her to the edge of a desk; his hot and hardening erection was pressed against her thigh from the confines of his jeans. He wanted her as badly as she wanted him.

"George," Hermione whimpered, from frustration and sexual tension. He was still barely touching her, and the fact that her body was reacting so readily to the barest of touches was annoying, to say the least. George let out a deep chuckle, his lips moving from her neck as popped the buttons on her blouse, moving his lips to kiss down her chest, and as his lips brushed over the swell of her breasts, her nipples peaked. Hermione wasn't the biggest in the cleavage department, but George didn't seem to mind it in the least as he made his way to her left nipple, sucking and nipping at it. He nuzzled at the breast, his red hair tickling against her skin as she threaded one hand through it.

"We shouldn't do this," Hermione objected, pushing back against his head. She did it with great reluctance and the moment his mouth left her body; it took everything within Hermione to stop herself from pulling him back to her. "It's too soon, and we can't just jump straight into something like this when we haven't talked about it."

George rose slightly, but his hips remained against hers, the erection growing and pressing against her. Hermione quickly started fastening up the buttons on her shirt. "We can stop, but don't ever tell me that you don't feel something with us. That you can't feel what's between us."

And she couldn't. She couldn't deny that in a moment of heated passion, she had felt everything with George. So much so, she'd lost her mind a little, and it had taken several minutes for her to regain her senses. Hermione nodded her head, not trusting her voice to reply to George.

George leaned in, his hot breath hitting her heated skin. Just his closeness was enough to set her body on fire, with the need and passion. She knew he was a man that would know exactly what to do with her body, how to get her going. It wouldn't be a fumble of hands and prodding with George; it would be hot and exciting, passionate.

"Don't make me come back to this office Hermione, meet Fred and I, tonight?" George asked in his low voice. "Fred and I will take turns coming to your office each day if you don't come. We're on a time crunch here. Work with us."

"Okay, fine," Hermione agreed with a nod. She had to see them and plan things out. Time was running out, so they had to get on with things and plan. "I'll finish up early tonight, and I'll be around your flat in a few hours time. I promise."

George held her gaze for a few moments, testing the truthfulness to her words. Hermione couldn't blame him; she was rarely away from work before nine o'clock in the evening. She had so much work to do and rarely saw her friends on a weekday. "Good."

The redhead stole one more sweet out of the bowl, throwing it up again and catching it in his mouth before he turned towards the door. He'd just peeked his head out when he quickly pulled back and looked towards Hermione. "Nice boobs by the way Granger, top marks for those."

He left with a laugh, leaving behind a rumpled and slightly embarrassed Hermione Granger. She took some deep breaths, trying to calm herself. She had a business meeting in an hour time. At least Hermione was able to take satisfaction in the fact that George had to walk across the Ministry with an erection, one she now knew would be very hard to hide in public.

o0o0o0o0o0o0o0o0o

At seven o'clock precisely, Hermione finished up the work in her office and locked the door. Her assistant had already left a few hours earlier, leaving behind her overworked boss. Not many worked long into the night like Hermione, except for Harry and the Minister himself, Kingsley. That meant the corridors were dark and desolate as Hermione made her way out of the department and towards the floo. She was two hours earlier than usual, but she'd made a promise to George. After the incident earlier in her office, Hermione wasn't afraid to meet with them. There had been something between them, something that hadn't just been down to the potions making her hormones go funny.

The twins brought out a passion in her, a fire and excitement. They always knew how to make someone at ease and deep down, they cared a lot deeper about things than many gave them credit for.

Hermione made her way to the Twins' flat, flooing just near their joke shop. She didn't know them well enough to floo straight into their home. Making her way through the street, she walked up the back stairs into the hallway that led to their door. It was big, maroon with a large handle on it. The moment Hermione touched the door knob, the handle sent a buzzing down her arm, it felt like an electrical shock.

Seconds later the door sprung open a wet-haired Fred peeked his head out. "Oh Merlin, sorry Hermione. I forgot about that door handle. We got the idea from a muggle shop. It's George's fault. Come on in. That shock should have passed by now."

"I should know better and keep my hands to myself when it comes to you two," Hermione replied, stepping inside. Fred was in his pajamas; his hair wet from a shower. "Sorry I'm later than I said, I got held up finishing some things up at work."

"Oh, this isn't because of you," Fred explained, gesturing towards his nightwear. "Had a bad batch of ingredients delivered. We didn't find out until the potion exploded on me earlier. It's taken me an hour and a half to get all the potion out of my hair."

"Its taken even longer for him to stop complaining about it," George shouted from the sitting room.

"Git," Fred joked. He placed a hand on Hermione's shoulder and gestured into the living room. "Come on; let's get comfortable before we make things uncomfortable."

Hermione walked into the room and took a seat on a small one-seater chair on the far side of the room. Fred sat down next to his twin, who still had his work uniform on. They both appeared relaxed with a look of mischief in their eyes.

They had to talk through all the details of the arrangement. Hermione had spent the last few days thinking over their offer, and she knew she had to be reasonable. She couldn't choose between the twins and pick one to be the father of the baby. It was a shock to the system, but Hermione was trying to get her head around it. Being with the twins to make a baby didn't mean she had to take part in a threesome. Hermione would be sleeping with both of the twins, but separately, for the sake of her future.

"Well, let's get down to it, shall we?" George started, glancing up at Hermione. "I told Fred about what happened earlier in your office. He wants the same things as me. We both want to be involved in our child's life. We both want to help make our child, and it's going to be the best option to help knock you up sooner rather than later."

"Plus we're good at sharing," Fred put in. "We can both help. All the baby making stuff is in your hands. If you need us to take potions or do whatever stuff those girly magazines say to do, then let us know. Apart from that, we think it might be best just to relax."

"Enjoy this."

"Have fun."

"Not focus on the main issue for a few weeks."

Hermione raised an eyebrow at them both, "I'm more than happy for you both to be in our child's life. I'm sure after a few misgivings I'll be able to overcome the fact that I'll be sleeping with you both. It may take me a week or two to get my head around it. I know it's common place in the Wizarding world, but in my parent's house, it wasn't that acceptable. I'm still not sure how I feel about sleeping with both of you at the same time."

"We're here to make a baby," Fred put in. "With both of us involved, we'll both feel less pressure."

"That's our most important point," George agreed. "That's something we're pretty firm on. We want to share this."

"Unless you can pick between us?" Fred asked, a smirk crossing his lips. He was well aware Hermione wouldn't be able to pick between them. She had never seen them apart and couldn't be the cause of splitting them up if it ever came to that.

"Fine, I'll have just to get my head around that issue. I don't want people to know. I don't want them to know about my illness, and I don't want them to know about us, not yet. When I'm pregnant, I'll be happy for them to know about the baby and who the fathers are," Hermione told them. "I just want to keep this to me to start with. I'll be telling people in the future, but on my own terms."

"Works fine for us," George agreed.

"Sure does Gred."

"We just have one more thing to go over," Hermione said. "Just us. I know it doesn't need saying, but I don't want anyone else involved with the three of us. We aren't a proper relationship, but diseases and such can hurt the baby very early on, and I wouldn't feel comfortable if other girls were on the scene."

"Of course," Fred replied. George nodded as well, his eye's firm on Hermione's. She was more shocked that George had agreed, more so for the fact he was just split from his fiancé. Someone Hermione knew he loved and cared for.

"So we're agreed?"

"Agreed," both the twins said at once.

"And if either of you take my fertility and hormone potions for product testing, I'll have your heads," Hermione warned. Ginny had mentioned the other week the twins were looking into a Wonder Witch line for the shop. They had already tried to recruit their sister for product advice and testing.

"She knows us too well brother," Fred mock sighed.

George nodded, "Scarily so."


 

Chapter Text

 

 

The next week after the agreement with the twins, nothing had actually happened. Hermione didn't expect them to jump into bed together and to quite honest; she wasn't quite sure how ready she was for that. But, the fact remained that nothing had happened. She saw them on the street, and they had waved. Hermione had seen them at the Burrow that Sunday and they were just as friendly as usual with her.

They had shared knowing glances with Hermione. Their gazes heated her body with the knowledge of what was to come. Even the slightest brush of their fingers over the dinner table at the Burrow felt more intimate now than it ever had before. That had been the extent of their touching since their meeting. Hermione knew they were giving her space to come to them, for her to take their relationship to the next step. It was her decision, which was both exciting and incredibly infuriating.

Hermione knew it was time to buckle up and gather her Gryffindor courage after a rather nasty incident with a client earlier that morning at work. Someone had booked a meeting to discuss the rights for Dragons, proclaiming to be a sponsor for the project. Hermione's assistant had booked the meeting, and it wasn't until the intimidating wizard stepped into her office that Hermione realised he'd lied. The man had his wand out within seconds and fired spells across the room at Hermione. Luckily, she had quick reflexes and cast a counterspell, but Hermione's magic was weak and didn't hold up against the older and more experienced wizard. His spell had sent her flying across the room, alerting everyone outside of the office that something was wrong. Hermione had been unharmed, one of the auror's had come down to arrest the man, and a healer had checked Hermione over. She was fine, but Hermione was just so embarrassed with herself. All the months on the run and fighting. Now, she couldn't even protect herself. Hermione's magic was failing, her time was running out, and she had to buckle up and continue with her plan with the twins.

The healer had ordered her to take a few days off to get over the shock of the incident. Instead of going home, Hermione took the opportunity to visit the twins. She popped into a shop, but not before picking up a few sandwiches as it was lunch time and then she made her way to the Weasley Wizard Wheezes.

The shop was busy, but nowhere near as packed as it normally was. The twins were around the shop helping customers and quickly finished up what they were doing when they saw her in the doorway. Fred was the first one to get to her, a smile on his face at her appearance.

"After a prank? Maybe something to trick Ron with? Half price if he's your goal," Fred offered her.

"I had brought you both sandwiches for lunch, but now I don't feel like feeding you," Hermione told him. George had just joined, catching the tail end of the conversation.

Fred put a hand to his heart, "Food, the way to a man's heart. I'd love to stay and earn that sandwich, but I have a business meeting with the second most boring bloke in the country," Fred said. "I'd personally rather invite Percy to the team than have a chat with this wizard, but we need this supplier's business."

"Fred lost our round of Exploding Snap this morning," George informed Hermione. "Which means you and I can enjoy this sandwich in the flat, while my brother goes and handles Mr. Winterbottom."

"Mr. Winterbottom?"

"It's going to the longest two hours of my life," Fred grumbled. He turned to Hermione, "How about I make it up to you and provide you with food on Friday? My food's a lot more edible than George's, don't believe him if he tells you otherwise."

"Hey!"

"Friday afternoon works for me," Hermione agreed. It wasn't a date. No matter how much it sounded like one.

Fred made his way to the meeting, calling a goodbye to them both and Verity who was hard at work on the till. George had to stay on the shop floor for another half an hour, but Lee turned up, and the wave of customers died down enough for George to escape for a little while. They both made their way upstairs, and George was quick to apologise for the tricked doorknob last time and proved it was fixed.

"I'm surprised you're here," George confessed, shutting the door after Hermione. "I didn't think we'd be seeing you again after last week."

Hermione made her way into the living room, taking a seat and placed the sandwiches on the table. "I know what you two were doing."

George raised an eyebrow, and a look of innocence crossed his face, "I have no idea what you mean," George stated, then he made his way into the kitchen to grab two plates and a bottle of water for each of them. He placed it all on the table, and Hermione passed a chicken sandwich over to him. "Fred and I have been busy working."

"I know you two were giving me time, and I'm thankful for that," Hermione told him with a smile. "Besides, I finally realised I couldn't keep putting this off when I'm on such a time crunch."

George slid the bottle of water in Hermione's direction; then his hand went to her knee in comfort. "It helps that Fred and I are both devilishly handsome, doesn't it?"

Hermione laughed, rolling her eyes at George's words. The twins always put her at ease. They ate their lunch, talking about the shop and their family. George was his easy going self and cracked some jokes to help Hermione relax.

It was easy to be with him; to forget the real reason they were spending time together. George was asking her things, trying to get to know her. It wasn't a hook up that made her feel cheap and dirty afterward. George and Fred would always be her friends, no matter what came out of it.

After finishing up their lunch, they both moved to the kitchen to clear their plates away and wash their hands. Hermione was leaning over the sink, washing her hands when George moved closer, stepping behind her. He never touched her, but Hermione could feel his warm breath coast over her shoulder.

"Have you been thinking about it?" George asked, his voice low and husky. "The day in the office?"

Hermione closed her eyes, trying to fight the blush that was spreading across her cheeks. She had been thinking about it. How turned on she'd been just from a few touches and how much she had enjoyed George's hands on her body. On the nights since the day in the office Hermione had dreamed of Fred and George. Intimate dreams of the pleasure they could give her body. Of the joy and intimacy, she would feel when being with the twins.

Nervously, Hermione nodded.

George's hands moved to her hips, and he shuffled closer, his body barely an inch from her back. "I thought about you too. I've been taking some daydream charms and every time it's been of you. Do you know what we did?" George asked. He never waited for an answer. He knew she wouldn't ask for the answer, but she still wanted to know. "I thought of us in that office and every time I take the daydream charm, we finish what we started."

Hermione's breath hitched, and slowly she turned, her hands still wrapped in the towel she had been using to dry her hands. George grabbed it from her hands and threw it behind him without a care where it landed. Hermione drew in a shaky breath, her cheeks blushing a darker shade of red from George's words.

George moved his hands to the countertop caging her in with his arms. It drew them closer together, and George's eyes moved to her lips. Hermione wet her dry lips, her breath still shaky from nervous as well as desire. She wanted him.

Hermione tilted her head up, and George lowered his, their lips meeting in a whisper of a kiss. It was gentle and sweet and only lasted a few seconds. Afterward, their foreheads pressed together, both of them had their eyes shut.

"Hermione, we can find another way," George told her. His voice was firm, but Hermione could hear the desire and heat in his tone. He wanted her, just as much as she wanted him. "We can all find another way if you're not sure."

"I'm sure George," Hermione replied. "I wouldn't have come here if I hadn't been sure."

George tilted his head up slightly, and their lips met again. His hand moved up to cup her cheek, his lips pressing against hers as the kiss began to deepen. Hermione could feel the heat and passion start to build, just like before. George's hand moved to the back of her head, tangling in her wild curls. George murmured something against her lips, and she felt his hands move to her shirt, sliding up and under the material. The evidence of his arousal pressed into Hermione's hip, his hands squeezing and touching her breasts over the material of her bra. Hermione set about pulling his tucked shirt from his work pants, and undoing the buttons so she could feel the skin of his stomach. His stomach was hot against her palms, a small, light treasure trail led down past the waistband of his trousers.

George pulled back from the kiss, his eyes lit with hunger and passion. Hermione used the opportunity pull her shirt up and over her head, throwing it behind her, hoping it missed the kitchen sink. This time, when their lips met, it gradually turned into something more as the passion and heat built up.

Hermione found herself in George's strong arms, holding her waist as he seated her on the edge of the kitchen table. His clever and nimble fingers went to her back, plucking off the catch of her bra with such ease. George made sure to pull back from his kisses to flash her a quick smirk, cocky and confident with his skills.

George's fingers went to her breasts, covering them easily with his big hands. His lips trailed kisses down her shoulder as his words were muffled against her skin. Hermione's nipples were erect from the cold and the heat she felt building for George. Hermione's hands were working on George's shirt, plucking at the buttons. Between his attention to her breasts and his kisses to her skin, the number of buttons she managed to get undone were few. George lowered down and took her nipple into his mouth, sucking and nipping at her breast. He lavished attention on each breast, teasing her like he'd done in the office previously. Teasing, always teasing.

When the buttons were undone, his shirt was open enough to show his chest and torso. George was well defined. The years of Quidditch and keeping active had served him well. He wasn't as well defined as Krum, but he still had a very nice body.

"Get your shirt off," Hermione demanded, her hands pushing at his shoulders.

George reluctantly moved back, "Whatever my lady commands," George said, a smirk on his lips. He pushed the shirt off, letting it drop the floor.

Moving forward, George pushed his hand up her skirt, his finger lightly trailing over the seams of her pussy over her knickers, Hermione had enough of the teasing. She reached down and quickly pulled open his belt, opening the buttons and pushed her hands inside. She cupped his erection through the material of his boxers. It was hard and hot at her touch. "Granger," George warned in a strained voice as Hermione trailed her hand up and down the erection, teasing him as he was her.

"Stop teasing me then," Hermione countered.

George chuckled at her words, pulling back to take a look at her. She was sat up on the countertop, breasts on display; her skirt pushed up to reveal her knickers. She was a goddess, confident and full of sexual tension.

This was the Hermione that George had expected to go into the deal with. The fiery and demanding Granger that never let anyone make her feel self-conscious or paranoid. With his eyes locked on hers, George reached under her work skirt, grabbed her knickers and pulled them down her legs. He pulled them over her heels and stepped back between Hermione's legs, his hands going to her thighs as his heated eyes stayed on hers.

Hermione reached down between them, pushing his boxers down his legs to reveal his hard erection, finally released from the boxers. It jutted, apparently excited about what was to come.

"You sure?" George asked, his hand going between them to make sure she was ready. She was wet, her body was sticky and prepared for him. He wasn't going to push this, though, it was more than sex. It was trust, proof that the twins would do everything in their power to look after her.

"If you work me up and get me this far along George Weasley only to leave me hanging, I will reconsider letting you join Fred and me in this deal," Hermione warned, raising her heels to lock her legs around Georges' waist. He wasn't going anywhere.

With a chuckle, he reached between them, his hand covering his erection as he moved forward to guide it between the lips of Hermione's pussy. He eased forward, careful as he made his way inside her, inch by inch. She was tighter than he expected, showing it had been some time since Hermione had been intimate with anyone. George wasn't the average sized Wizard either; he was long. With a firm thrust, he seated himself deep inside her. The clench of her pussy making him groan. Damn teasing witch.

"Easy," George soothed as he felt her clench around him again. He leaned down, finally meeting his lips with hers as he began to move. It was more intimate than Hermione had ever expected, slower and personal. It wasn't the quick fumble Hermione had felt with Krum; it was more intimate like when with a partner, a lover. Hermione had to turn her gaze from his. She couldn't look at him anymore. The sex between them was to meet an end, to knock her up. This wasn't a relationship.

George continued to move, his thrusts deep and sharp as he moved inside her. Hermione was moaning from his movements, and he tilted her back slightly, arching her back as he leaned forward to claim her nipple instead of her lips.

"Please," Hermione whispered, her breath hitching as he began to go deeper and harder. He continued, getting Hermione closer and closer to the pit of no return. Her orgasm was so close.

Then he stopped.

"What's my name, Granger?" George asked, pulling his head back slightly. If it hadn't been for the serious look in his eyes, Hermione would have hit him over the head.

"Will you just…"

"My name, Hermione," George pressed, his eyes on hers. He was serious. That's when she realised the problem.

For some reason, George had always been second best to his twin, just because Fred was slightly wilder. However, no one got to see the other side of George, this side of him. It was always Fred and George. Fred, then George. Hermione had heard a few funny stories about George being called his twin's name, but she'd never thought about it until now. George felt second best; he felt different. He was damaged, just like her, just like Fred.

"George," Hermione replied, her hand reaching out to cup the side of his face with the missing ear, to prove she didn't care about it. "Make me come George Weasley."

With a quirk of his lips, George began to move again, this time with more esteem, faster, and faster. He was more determined, somehow helped despite it being Hermione the twins had come to help. Maybe they were just helping each other, fixing each other piece by piece.

They finally came together, Hermione making so much noise that George buried her head into his neck. He hadn't cast a Silencing Charm, never expecting Granger to be a screamer. With a grunt of his own, he came in Hermione, deep inside as he held her body to his.

After a few minutes, they both caught their breath and pulled back slightly. "It doesn't bother you?" George whispered, his breath heaving after his recent orgasm. When Hermione frowned, George shifted his head slightly to show his missing ear. She had never seen one of the twins so self-conscious. It was different; it was so human to see. Hermione was wrong; maybe George was the most emotional twin after all.

"I think it makes you different," Hermione replied, her hand reaching up to pull back the mop of hair covering the hole. "I believe that it proves how strong you are to be confident in public each day when it clearly affects you. I believe that it makes you even more beautiful than people realise."

"If there has ever been someone more deserving of defeating the odds, it's been you, Hermione."

"If there's ever been anyone more worthy of being a father, it's you and Fred."

They both kissed, gentle and intimately as they pulled back and cleaned themselves up. Hermione quickly found her top and bra, getting dressed as George did the same.

"You know," George began, fastening up his work trousers. "I never intended to do that when I invited you up to eat a sandwich."

"Really?" Hermione asked with suspicion.

"Well, I had hoped."

"I'm sure," Hermione smiled.

"I think you need to spend the night with Fred to see just how much we both want this family with you, how much we both need it," George said, turning serious. "We are the best looking and most charming; I will give you that. But behind closed doors, everyone has secrets. You know mine now."

"And Fred?"

"Fred's a little broken too."

George pressed a kiss to Hermione's forehead, before moving down to press a kiss to her lips one final time. "You're the first girl that has touched my hair and ear, Hermione. You're the first one that... never cared about that." George moved across the kitchen to pick up the things on the floor.

"That was hot Hermione; you can buy me lunch anytime." He was back to the cocky and confident guy everyone thought he was. Sometimes, he needed a break, and he needed to show someone he wasn't the perfect funny guy everyone thought the twins were.

"Oh and Hermione? Fred and I are the best of friends; you don't need to worry about jealousy. You'll see how different we are apart, but together? You'll see how perfect the three of us together are. Never be afraid of something that feels right."

That was the day that Hermione realised it wasn't just Fred and George; it was George and Fred too.

0o0o0o0o0

Fred leaned across the table, a grin on his face at his twins news. He picked up his butterbeer and made a 'cheers' gesture before taking a drink. "Does this mean you're going to wear your hearing aid finally?" Fred asked, the corner of his lip quirking up. "I've got so many old men jokes saved up, I've had a year to work on them."

George smiled but shook his head. He wasn't ready for that; Hermione's approval had been more than he ever expected. Ever since the accident George had only ever seen pity on girls face like they were sorry for something he had no control over. Hermione, she just saw him, George. He had grown his hair to cover it, ashamed at the pity in everyone's eyes. Everyone but Fred. "Maybe one day, you know how Mum will react. Will you take the potion tonight?"

Fred's smile vanished; he glanced down at his potion. "I know you need the rest; I can take it."

"It's you that will need the rest; our witch has more stamina than the swotty Granger you remember," George joked. "You know I don't mind."

After the war, everyone had problems, even the twins. George had his hearing problem while Fred couldn't sleep. Ever. Each night he dreamt of the wall, feeling his bones crunch under the strain and he would wake up screaming. So a few weeks later he started taking potions. After three months of dreamless sleep potions, he'd become addicted, shaking with addiction. That was when George put a stop to it, determined to work out a better solution for Fred to sleep without it. So each night, for the last nine months George slept on his brother's floor. In return, Fred covered for his twins hearing problems, distraction, and lies. Both keeping secrets from a family they knew relied on them to be the life and soul of the party.

Fred and George, George and Fred.

They were a little broken too.

Chapter Text

 

Hermione spent the afternoon preparing herself for an evening with Fred, which she was still not calling a date. He was cooking her dinner, but it was probably the polite thing to do before you had sex with someone. Hermione's time with Krum had only been quick tumbles in the bedsheets, there had never been a true friendship or connection between them. The twins were different, they were trying to create a child together. After all this was over, they would be in each others' lives forever. Hermione wanted a family with them. She needed it. Fred and George were safe, funny and determined to help. Having their child wouldn't be as terrify as Hermione had initially thought. They were good people, and it made a lot more sense than the things Hermione had originally planned.

Applying some lipstick, Hermione made her way towards the floo in a black dress that showed off her curves. Every girl had a little black dress in their wardrobe that made them feel more comfortable and sexy. She needed the confidence boost to battle her nerves. Stepping into the floo, she called the twins address and travelled over.

"Hey!" George called, greeting her at the floo. He offered his hand and helped her step off from the floo tile step, onto the living room carpet. "Off to hear Charlie's heroic tale of his latest dragon involved injury. I'll be back in the morning."

Hermione felt herself blush at the sight of George, her body tingling as it remembered what they had shared the other day. "Have a good time," Hermione replied.

"Oh, I'm sure I won't!" George chuckled. He pressed a kiss to her cheek and went to the floo, leaving to see his older brother.

Hermione was left to silence until a hiss of pain was heard from the kitchen. She made her way in to see Fred at the stove, cooking their dinner. He didn't seem in control of things and was cursing at his red thumb, his eyes glaring at the pan that contained their chicken.

"So, you're losing the battle against the stove already?" Hermione asked, a smile on her lips. Fred turned to her and smiled back. He dropped his hand, and his eyes roamed her figure slowly. Fred's smile grew at her appearance, before looking back up to meet her gaze.

"Well, I'm glad I stepped away from the pans before I caught sight of you," Fred joked. He turned to the pan, turning down the temperature before gesturing for them both to return to the sitting room. Fred took a seat, tugging on Hermione's hand to make her sit right beside him.

"Thank you for cooking dinner, Fred," Hermione said politely.

"Are you really here just to test my cooking?" Fred asked, an eyebrow raised. "George told me to go easy with you. Didn't give me any details about what happened with you two so wipe that frown off your face. He just said he explained things a bit more to you. I wanted to ask about it, see how you're feeling about it now."

Hermione bit her lip, blushing as Fred spoke about George. It was strange having a relationship with two men. Fred and George were separate people with different personalities, but they worked so well together, in all areas according to the twins. Plus, there was never one without the other. "We discussed things; I asked to take things slowly while I adjust. I know I don't have much time, but it's still hard to break the values my parents brought me up with. You understand, don't you?"

"Yeah, I get it," Fred agreed. "You know it's a twin thing, here in the wizarding world, right? Mum's brothers' were twins and they were bonded to one girl. They died a year later and never had the chance to have a kid, but Mum said they had a great relationship with each other and their girl. No one's going to judge you when they find out about the baby. Mum will be over the moon because let's be honest; you've been her daughter for years now."

Hermione laughed softly at Fred's words and then nodded. "Thank you, Fred, it really does help to hear that. It's not that I'm worried about, it's just I'm not that experienced. Well, more than that, I'm not as confident as I need to be to get through this,."

Fred's eyes' shone with mischief and he leaned closer. His right hand went to her knee, and his lips moved to her ear. "Granger, you wouldn't walk into my house wearing a killer dress like that if you had any doubts about us being together. Relax, let's eat and afterward we can discuss desert." He stood up after his words and made his way back into the kitchen, leaving Hermione behind slightly breathless. This whole twin thing was going to be a lot harder than she imagined. They both had such a way with words, a way to make her blush.

After ten minutes the food was cooked, and Fred brought the plates to the kitchen table. He offered a choice of drinks, and Hermione choose water, wanting to keep her head clear for the rest of the night. They sat down and started eating. Hermione groaned at the taste. It was exquisite; she had never imagined Fred as a good cook.

"This is incredible; how did you learn to cook like this?" Hermione asked. She used her fork to pick up another piece of chicken. "I never pegged either of you as cooks."

"I cook mostly, George has some talent for pancakes, but he doesn't really enjoy it," Fred explained. "We used to switch up when Mum gave us cooking lessons. I would go to all of his if he did my homework. It worked out pretty well in the end. I get to charm the girls with my cooking and George gets to stay downstairs doing all the account work."

Hermione laughed and went back to eating her food, enjoying each and every bite. After they had finished, Fred took away the plates and led Hermione back to the couch. She felt the nervousness of the evening start build up within her. "What do you want to do?" Hermione asked, clenching her hands together.

Fred raised an eyebrow, smiling slightly at the uncomfortable witch. "Not that Hermione, I only take willing girls to my bed." He moved across the couch and reached underneath it, pulling out a book. He held it up with a huge smile on his face. "This is Ron's diary, something he did for a few weeks before we found out and stole it. I dug it up just for you. Gets pretty juicy near the end." Fred took a seat on the couch and held his hand out for Hermione.

She took his hand, and he pulled her onto the couch, her bum on the seat, her body twisted, so her legs were lying over his lap. She wasn't sitting on him, but she could still feel his hands on her legs. Fred gave her the book.

"Relax, read to me," Fred instructed.

Hermione smiled gratefully at Fred. She should have known he would have thought up a way to get rid of the tension between them. Fred wasn't like other men; he had plenty of ways to make people comfortable. "Okay," She said opening up the first page. " 'Dear Diary, Ginny suggested I do this because I might not have as many accidents with my anger if I find another way to vent. I think it's a stupid suggestion, but Mum's still making me do it. I hate having a sister. She's nearly as bad as having brothers. Anyway, diary it kind of feels weird calling you that, maybe I need to name you something?' "

They both laughed as Hermione read out loud from the diary. Whilst Hermione was reading, Fred was running his hand up and down her leg. She felt him trail his hand further up each time, dipping slightly under her black dress. Hermione's breath was catching each time as teased her. He didn't seem affected, continuing to listen as she read. When his hand moved further up onto her thigh and stayed there, Hermione's voice caught, and she stumbled over her words. It wasn't an inappropriate touch, but it was still something a lover or boyfriend would do. However, with Fred, he was neither at the moment, and Hermione's hormone filled body was reacting to his every move.

"Feeling more relaxed Granger?" Fred asked, a smirk on his face. With her nod, he pulled the book out of her grasp and flung it across the room. Fred tugged at her legs, pulling her closer to him until she was practically sitting on him. Without a word, their lips met in a sweet and gentle kiss. Soon the kiss grew hungry, and they were locked in an embrace, their tongues tasting each other as Fred's hand slipped under her dress, going further than he had before.

Fred's hand caressed her pussy over her knickers, earning a groan of pleasure from Hermione. She wiggled, her body eager for more as their lips continued to move against each other. Hermione could feel his growing erection against her bum and she couldn't resist rubbing against him.

"Little witch," Fred muttered, his voice sounding amused. He quickly moved his hands and grabbed her waist, rolling them until she was the one on the couch, Fred hovering over with his knees either side of her legs. The sudden movement earned a squeak from the witch, but Fred ignored it as he turned Hermione to face the edge of the couch and he slid down onto the floor, on his knees in front of her.

"Fred," Hermione warned, her heart beating faster as she guessed what he was about to do. Fred ignored her plea and tugged at her underwear, pulling them down her hips. Hermione helped, lifting her bum enough so he could slip them off her. Then, he grabbed her thighs and pulled her closer, to the edge of the couch.

"Fred you don't have to…"

"I know," Fred stated, pulling her legs onto his shoulders. His eyes went to her pussy, taking in the tiny stripe of hair that was there. He glanced up at her, giving her one of his cheeky smiles before he leaned forward and pressed his mouth against her.

Hermione flopped back on the couch; her breathing heavy as she felt Fred at her most intimate place. His tongue swirled around her clit, sucking on it to pull long moans of pleasure out of her. She felt him chuckle against her, and that only sent more vibrations running through Hermione. After a few more moments of sucking and tasting, his tongue dipped inside her to pull a long and deep moan from her lips. Fred worked her faster, using his fingers and tongue to bring her closer and closer towards the edge. He brought her to the brink of an orgasm and then pulled back to look at her.

Hermione was on the couch, withering from the contact and in utter shock. She had been so close to coming until Fred had stopped. She tried not to glare or pout at him, but she apparently hadn't pulled it off when he laughed at her and got to his feet.

"I want to feel you come when I'm inside you Hermione," Fred informed her. He held his hand out for her, and she took it, letting him lead her towards his bedroom. "Those heels are totally doing it for me too. Next time just come over in them and a jacket, I don't think my twin would complain either."

"I'm sure I wouldn't hear a complaint," Hermione smiled as they reached the bedroom.

Fred's hands went to the edge of her dress, just above her knees and he felt the soft silkiness of her skin as he pulled the material over her head.

"You're beautiful," Fred muttered kissing and nipping her neck. Fred kissed her a few more times before trailing down her body, and his talented fingers quickly removed her bra. He covered her with kisses, licks, and nips as he made his way to her breasts. Fred took a nipple into his mouth and sucked it gently. He moved his other hand up and down her thigh.

He sucked a bit harder on a patch of skin just above her nipple leaving a red patch before he moved to her other breast. Fred gave the breast the same treatment. Licking and sucking until the nipple hardened and then tugging it gently with his lips. His other hand reached for pussy, touching her overstimulated center from their activities just a few moments ago on the couch. His touch was gentle, so gentle that it got frustrating for Hermione, and she started unbuttoning his shirt and undoing the button on his trousers.

Fred stilled Hermione's hands, chuckling at the growl of frustration she released. Fred pressed a kiss to her lips and pulled off the rest of his clothes, his erection sprang free. It was hard and thick, not as long as George's, but thicker. Hermione placed her hand on it and kissed Fred harder. Now it was her that was teasing him, stroking him softly. Her nerves were gone now that her body was begging for the release that it was previously denied.

Fred finally took pity on her, leading her over to the middle of the bed. She lay across it as Fred crawled up her body, hovering over her. He was supporting his weight on his elbows so not to crush the witch. He reached down and grabbed one of her legs and pulled it up, wrapped it around his waist and slowly entered her. He pushed all the way down to the root, holding himself with great restraint to give her time to adjust to him.

Hermione felt her body stretch to accommodate his thickness, but at least it didn't hurt. She felt full, a good and pleasurable feeling. When Hermione had settled, she nodded and stroked a hand up Fred's arm to get him to continue. On her command, he started moving in a slow rhythm. He was slow, but his thrusts were deep, each time he drew himself out almost all the way out from her body then slowly pushed back inside her. Hermione's body was already on edge; her pussy clenched around his dick each time he bottomed out inside her. She had been so close to reaching her orgasm already before they had even started.

For a stretch of time, the room was filled with moans and the sound of two bodies coming together. They were both chasing an orgasm, but it seemed Hermione was having trouble getting there after all.

"Let go, Hermione," Fred said raising his head and staring at her. Locking his eyes with her.

Hermione couldn't control it; Fred seemed to pull the orgasm out of her, and Hermione came with a shout. Her whole body shook from the intensity, and she squeezed Fred tightly. Fred followed seconds later and released into Hermione, shouting her name.

Fred remained inside her for a few moments, catching his breath. After, he pulled out and lay beside her, his hands went behind his head as he closed his eyes. Hermione grabbed a pillow, tucking it under her hips to lift them up from the bed.

One of Fred's eyes peeked over at her "What are you doing?" Fred asked, curious.

"I read in one of the books to tilt your pelvis to help with pregnancy," Hermione told him. She relaxed back, her eye's closing. "Between this, the potions and having sex with you and George, I'm positive my chances will be rather good by the end of the month."

"Muggles really do have a good sense of humor," Fred smiled, rolling over to lean over his witch. "I bet it doesn't work; they just write all that rubbish to see if they can trick enough people into believing it."

"I'll want an apology when this works."

"George and I will want credit when this works."

0o0o0o0o0o0

George smirked as Hermione came into the kitchen the next morning. She was wearing one of Fred's shirts, which dipped down just to her thighs. It was comfy and the closest thing Hermione could find to grab in the dark.

"Good night?" George asked placing a hand on Hermione's hip and pulling her towards him. Hermione smiled and stroked a hand down the back of George's' head. She twirled the short hairs between her fingers. She moaned when she felt one of George's hands trail down her back and cup her bare bum.

"I had a good night, and now my morning isn't looking so bad either."

"Good, you deserve it," George replied, pinching her bum. "We're not so bad after all, are we?"

Hermione shook her head, words failing her as lots of different emotions hit her. She was seeing them both in a strictly sexual relationship. Apart from her brief relationship with Krum, she hadn't really had one night stands.

Being with the twins wasn't as awkward as she had suspected. Hermione didn't feel any guilt towards George for sleeping with his brother the previous night. She knew the three of them were in it together and that the twins truly were good at sharing.

George seemed to spot her run of emotions and moved his hand to her face, his finger stroking her cheek. "You'll be okay. Those potions have made you extra horny, right? If you get too embarrassed when you go home and analyze all of this, just blame that."

Hermione laughed at his words because the potions were making her extra hormonal and increased sexual need was one of the side effects. Or benefits as the Medi-witch had explained. "I'll remember that for when people find out," Hermione informed him, a smile on her face.

George smiled for a few moments, and then his face turned serious as he glanced out of the kitchen door and turned back to Hermione. "How was Fred last night?" George asked with a worried expression. "Did he wake up during the night?"

"No, he took a potion and went straight to sleep. It looked like a dreamless sleep potion," Hermione replied. She remembered George saying something about Fred struggling to sleep, but she hadn't paid it any attention the night before. "He was fine George, honestly."

George didn't look convinced but just nodded his head. He turned from her, his eyes on the stove. "How do you feel about pancakes for breakfast?"

Chapter Text

Weeks went by for Hermione and the twins as they continued with their plans for pregnancy. They saw each other on a regular basis, especially when Hermione started monitoring her fertility on a muggle hormone stick that indicated when she was ovulating. The twins had been suspicious, confusing the ovulation tests with pregnancy tests. It had taken some explaining, but they had eventually understood. Sexual education hadn't been taught in the Wizarding world, that task was left to the parents. Fred and George knew what they were doing of course, but they didn't know much about ovulation. Of course, the glory of teaching the twins something was quickly deflated when Fred came out of her bathroom one afternoon to announce he wasn't ovulating. Hermione hid her tests after that.

All those weeks of trying and planning came down to this one moment. At seven o'clock in the evening on a Saturday, Hermione was stood in her own bathroom pacing the short stretch of carpet as she waited. It had been nearly five weeks since she had started having sex with the twins. Her period was due the day before, and it hadn't come. Hermione's body was like clockwork, so when the absence of her period had occurred, Hermione had been elated. She had managed to make it through a whole day before caving in and buying three muggle pregnancy tests.

The tests required two minutes so, after taking the test Hermione paced, waiting and hoping. Her magic was now dreadful. She couldn't cast a spell even to check if she was pregnant. Her wand was pretty useless now. This week she hadn't even been able to cast a summoning spell, and her apparition was starting to become a bit of a problem. She didn't want to get splinched, so she traveled by floo as much as possible.

After two long minutes, Hermione finally turned to her tests. Her mobile phone was buzzing on the counter, indicating the time was up. With shaking hands, Hermione flipped the first test over, one line, she wasn't pregnant. The sticks could read false negatives; she'd read on a site for expectant mothers the night before. Hermione turned the rest of the tests over, taking in the results that displayed on each one. They were all the same.

Not Pregnant.

It had only been five weeks, and she still had time, but with each passing month, her time was running out. She had been hopeful, merely because of her late period. It had made sense, and with the potions, Hermione had been confident and optimistic. After everything that had happened to her, she deserved some happiness for a change. However, it seemed fate was once more not on her side. With the disappointment of the tests, Hermione threw them in the bin and went back to making dinner.

An hour later, Hermione's period started, and she couldn't help the trickle of tears that leaked from her eyes. She was frustrated more than she was sad. She had been holding out hope that the pregnancy was too early to show up on a pregnancy stick. No, she wasn't pregnant, not this month. Hermione walked to her floo and grabbed a handful of powder. She needed company, needed the two people she could rely on to understand her frustration.

Hermione floo'd to the twins flat, still dressed in her Disney pajamas. She stepped out, brushing the dust off and proceeded to fall into a hard chest.

"Opps," Lee said, steadying Hermione with his hands on her shoulders. "Everything okay Hermione?"

"I'm all right," Hermione promised. Her few fallen tears were long gone, but she couldn't help the sad expression that was on her face. "I've just popped over to see the twins; I didn't realise they were busy tonight."

"We're just going over some business. Fred and George wanted to do some inventory, and I said I'd stay behind to help and drink their alcohol. They're just in the kitchen, want me to get them?" Lee offered.

"No, no it's fine," Hermione quickly dismissed. She straightened up, her shoulders stiff as she took a few steps back inside the floo. "I just wanted to see them about tomorrow - dinner at the Burrow - but I can catch them in the morning."

Hermione was just raising her hand to the bowl of floo powder when the twins stepped into the living room, carrying muggle beer, and a tray of pizza. They stopped at the sight of her, a concerned look crossing both their faces. "I didn't mean to interrupt, I'll catch you both tomorrow," Hermione explained.

"No you won't," George said quickly. He passed the pizza to Lee while Fred placed a can of beer in their friend's other hand. "We can check the inventory s any night. I'm not that keen on this muggle alcohol anyway. One of our customers sends us a crate each month, and it takes us a while to get rid of it."

"No," Hermione pressed on. "I don't want to disturb your night. It's fine Fred."

"Lee doesn't mind," Fred shrugged, patting his friend's arm. Lee frowned but never commented. "We see his ugly mug every day in the shop. We'll catch you Monday mate, alright?"

Lee nodded, holding the beer closer to his chest, "Yeah, sure. I can go and see if Ang wants to eat some carbs for a change. That diet the team has her on is crazy."

George walked Lee out to the back, while Fred remained in the living room with Hermione. He stepped towards her once the other two were out of sight, his hand reaching up to cup her cheek. "What's wrong Hermione?"

Hermione couldn't speak, disappointment filling her. She moved into Fred, pressing her face into his chest as his arms wrapped around her body. She felt silly being so emotional, but the hormones, her disappointment, and worry over the twin's reaction was all too much.

"Ah," George said, stepping back into the living room a few moments later. He moved over and placed a hand on Hermione's back. "Plenty more chances Hermione, we'll get there one day. It'll be sooner rather than later. Just you wait and see."

"I'm being silly," Hermione muttered against Fred's chest. "I know it's too early to be disappointed."

"Not silly," Fred said, his hand running through her hair. "It's alright to be sad. Well, that and look unbelievably cute in those cartoon duck pajamas. I never imagined Hermione Granger would own something so adorable."

"It's Donald Duck," Hermione told them. "My parents bought me these a few years ago."

"I thought something had escaped from the neighborhood pond when I first saw you," George joked. "How about we take you and those duckie pajamas to bed?"

"That's a quacking idea!" Fred agreed.

Together snuggled in bed, Hermione forgot her troubles and found sleep. Yes, the twins were definitely the perfect choice. Any remaining doubts Hermione had about the twins vanished that night as they looked after her. They knew what she needed, and together, they ate and then slept. Early in the morning, Hermione sneaked out of the flat, leaving both the twins in the big double bed asleep and snoring.

0o0o0o0o0

Later that day, the entire Weasley family, as well as Harry and Hermione, were expected at the Burrow for the traditional Sunday roast. Mrs. Weasley had owled them all to make sure everyone was coming. She never normally checked in with them, but today they were expected to attend. With most of the boys moved out, Mrs. Weasley liked her family to come together at least once a week. This week seemed different, there had to be something the family wanted to announce or talk about if Mrs. Weasley was double checking they were coming.

Hermione arrived at the Burrow at the same time as Harry, a few hours after leaving the twins. Harry had apparated at the end of the garden path at the Burrow, not far from Hermione. He turned when he saw her, flashing her a smile and walked the few yards over to her.

"Hermione, everything okay?" Harry asked. He opened the gate and gestured for her to go first. "Sorry, I haven't been around much. The Auror department has so much work to do."

"Don't worry about it Harry," Hermione dismissed quickly. "Works been just as bad on my end. How about lunch tomorrow? We really need to catch up."

"That works for me. So this lunch today isn't about you?" Harry asked, an eyebrow raised as they walked side by side.

Hermione laughed and shook her head, "Honestly I was thinking the same about you. I thought you and Ginny might have sneaked off last week and gotten married without all the wedding drama."

"We wouldn't do that without you there Hermione. You and Ron would be on the top of my list."

"I'm glad to hear it. I guess we'll have to wait and see what today's about then."

Harry nodded. He reached for the door to the Burrow door, holding it open for Hermione. She laughed at his gentlemanly behavior and just as she was about to step inside she noticed his glasses were cracked slightly. After everything he went through, defeating the world of the darkest wizard and fighting death eaters, he still couldn't fix his own glasses. Hermione wasn't sure she had the magic to fix them, but she wanted to test her strength. With a quick wave of her wand, Hermione had the glasses fixed and she stepped inside, choosing to ignore the smirk on Harry's face as she passed. She knew he left them for her to fix on purpose, just to annoy her. At least her spell had worked, even if it had taken so much out of her.

"Hermione dear!" Mrs. Weasley greeted when she stepped inside. "Oh and Harry. Lovely to see you both here. I don't know why you both insist on staying at your home. This place misses you both so much." She pulled them both into a hug, pushing air out of their lungs. "Now, off into the sitting room while I finish up dinner. It won't be too long. The rest are already here."

Once dismissed, Hermione led the way into the crowded sitting room. The twins were leaning against the fireplace, talking with their eldest brother who sat on the couch with his wife, Fleur. The rest of the Weasley's were sitting in chairs scattered around the room, including Mr. Weasley who sat beside Ron, discussing the latest Quidditch results. Harry made a beeline for them as Ginny hadn't come down yet.

"Hermione," Charlie greeted, moving over to her for a hug. She hadn't seen much of Charlie, apart from his brief interaction in the battle. He didn't visit the family much, only when his mother fire-called him and turned on the waterworks about how much she missed her second eldest son. It was usually when there was an important event, so Charlie showing up to dinner meant that something was going on.

"So, you aren't dating some Slytherin, are you? Something must be going on for Mum to go all out and force everyone here."

Hermione rolled her eyes at Charlie's antics. "No, so this might mean another lunch of your mother trying to set us up, though. Unless you have some news?"

"Afraid not," Charlie said with a shrug. "How about we go for dinner soon? Then if Mum asks, we can fob her off with that. Plus, I wouldn't mind catching up with you. I have a few suggestions about dragons for your department. So, how about it?"

"Well, when you put it like that," Hermione replied with a laugh. "Of course, we'll have to let your mother down slowly next time or she might have the bridal magazines out for us."

"Merlin, you're right."

Mrs. Weasley called for dinner, and Harry went up the stairs to drag Ginny down. They all gathered around the table, with Mr. Weasley sitting at the top of the table. Hermione sat near the bottom, Ron and Charlie took the other seat beside her. The twins were on the opposite side of the table, facing her. Mrs. Weasley dished all the food out, placing a lot of freshly cooked dishes in the middle of the table for everyone to serve themselves.

After everyone had enough food on their plate, Mr. Weasley asked for silence and stood. "I know you all have busy jobs now, so thanks for taking the time to come round here. Your Mum and I are so proud of you all. Bill had a quick word with me earlier, and he has something to share in a minute, but first, I just wanted to let everyone know about my promotion. Kingsley's asked me to run the department after my manager has taken his retirement early. He's a good man, that Kingsley. With the bonus, we have decided to do up your uncles' Fabian and Gideon's gravestones. Some death eaters destroyed them last year, so we want to replace them."

Mrs. Weasley stepped forward and placed a hand on her husband's shoulder, "Your father, and I wanted to have a little party, there's the Gemini moon coming up in a few weeks. We haven't celebrated that since Ginny was little."

"Good idea," Bill agreed, straightening.

The Weasley boys all looked excited at the idea of the Gemini moon party. Harry and Hermione were the only ones lost in the conversation.

"What's the Gemini moon?" Hermione asked Charlie. She hadn't ever heard of it, in the muggle world or the magical one. None of her research had ever mentioned it during her studies.

"A lot of years ago the olden day witches and wizards said there were two moons, but some dark witch did some bad magic and mother nature was so upset, she removed one of the moons. Without the two moons, the witches and wizards became a lot less powerful and needed to use wands to harness their powers. Since then, there have been identical twins born. Apparently stronger than the average witch or wizard," Charlie explained.

"I've never heard of that before, in history class, they never mentioned anything like that," Hermione replied.

"It was a very long time ago, according to the stories," Charlie said. "But it is just a wives' tale passed down the Prewett line, so you never know what rubbish they made up along the way. It's just one night of the year that everyone gets to have a party if you have twins in the family."

"It's basically an excuse to have a party and a good drink," George explained.

"Plus Mum's brothers were identical and used any reason to have a good party," Fred agreed.

"Perhaps that's true," Mrs. Weasley said taking a seat next to her husband. "But my brothers always said their magic felt stronger the night of the Gemini celebration. You shouldn't go judging what people believe in. For all we know, it could be true. None of the muggles know about us, but we exist."

"Your mother's right," Mr. Weasley spoke up. "I think it's an excellent idea to celebrate something your uncles used to enjoy doing, to mark the occasion. They did a lot for the Order in the first war, and they took a lot of wizards down once during the night of the supposed Gemini moon."

"Either way, it's something I want to do for them, and I think you should be a bit more open about it. You lot always enjoyed it when you were young. Especially the twins, you two used to love being the center of attention."

"Oh how they've changed," Charlie joked.

"None of that, let's eat up before the dinner gets cold."

The boys all quietened down, and Hermione didn't want to risk Mrs. Weasley's wrath by bringing the matter back up. They all congratulated their father and agreed to come to the celebration. They ate dinner, chatting back and forth about what had been going on during their week at work. Afterward, Bill stood and placed a hand on Fleur's back to encourage her to rise too.

"It's still a bit early, so we hope you'll all keep it within this room, but we're going to be adding to the Weasley family," Bill announced. "We got it confirmed last week. With Fleur's veela blood the pregnancy might go a bit faster, so wanted to tell you all to know before it became too obvious."

"Congrats bro, and you too Fleur," Charlie called at Hermione's side. They all got up and patted Bill on the back, hugging a happy and glowing Fleur.

Hermione looked at the twins, who were both looking at her with concern. It was the hardest thing to do, but with reluctance Hermione rose from her seat and moved to Fleur, hugging and congratulating her, then moving to Bill to do the same. It felt stiff and awkward, but Hermione tried to put on her best smile. She was happy for the couple, but Hermione felt a longing and jealousy that she had never felt before.

The twins had moved from the table and were whispering together, then casting a worried glance in Hermione's direction. They knew it had to be hard for her, but watching them worry just made Hermione feel worse. She waved off their concerns, and the twins made quick work to cover the awkwardness. With a shout, the twins made their way over to their brother and congratulated him, then proceeded to put forward their own names for the baby.

Shortly after the dinner, Hermione made up an excuse about needing to visit a work friend and quietly left the Burrow, leaving the twins' sympathetic faces behind.

0o0o0o0o0

Fred clutched the potion tightly, ignoring the heated gaze of his twin. He knew George didn't want him to take it too often, worried Fred slip into the bad habit he'd gone through before. Sleeping hadn't gotten any easier. Fred barely ever slept, except for when he took the potion. He felt so guilty towards George, who spent his nights with Fred, waking him during his screaming dreams. Every time Fred went without the potion, neither of them got much sleep.

"Fred," George cautioned, "I know you took one last night when Hermione slept over. You don't need it tonight; we'll be fine."

Fred glanced up, "Come on George; I'm not going to let it get like last time, I know the signs, we both do. If it ever gets to that point, we'll both cut me off. You need sleep, we both do. We have that meeting in the morning…"

George never said anything, but they both knew how strong his disapproval was. The twins very rarely disagreed, but when they did, they never argued much over the issue. Both of them were too stubborn to ever change their minds to what the other was thinking.

"I'll take it tonight and then after that, I won't take it for a few days," Fred promised. He didn't look up at his brother as he carried the potion to his room. Fred drank the dreamless sleep potion, then settled in bed, relaxed. He could only sleep with the potion, or rather, it was the only time he got a decent night's sleep.

An hour later, Fred was asleep, but tonight was different. Tonight, the horror of the wall came, the feeling of his body being crushed slammed into him. Fred woke up, screaming. He had the crushed feeling of the wall, the pain in his chest from dark magic making him relive it in his dreams. Every time he dreamt of the wall, he felt the physical pain. Fred couldn't catch his breath.

For the first time, the potion hadn't worked.

Chapter Text

 

 

Monday morning at work kept Hermione's mind off all her troubles. She couldn't really do much magic. Some days she felt rather powerful and back to her usual self, but other days like today, she could barely manage to raise a smile, never mind a spell. Despite the trouble with her powers, Hermione got down to work and managed to get a lot done. When dinner time rolled around, Hermione was still hard at work, distracted with a new law that was coming up in the courts soon. She was trying to get the unicorns listed as endangered due to their dropping numbers. A lot of them had been killed by Death Eaters during the war. Now, Hermione wanted a law stating it was illegal to kill or injure a unicorn.

Distracted, Hermione barely registered the knock at her door. Harry hadn't bothered to wait for an answer as he stepped inside. When Hermione glanced up, she finally remembered back to their lunch date that they made only yesterday. Harry look amused, instead of annoyed. Hermione wanted to wipe that smug look off his face. He always liked it when he remembered something she didn't.

"Don't comment Harry," Hermione warned as she gathered her papers and put them aside. She stood from her desk and reached into her top drawer to pull out her purse. "I got distracted with a new law for unicorns, there's so few left of them the wizarding world. We need to acknowledge them."

"I never really thought about it," Harry confessed. He held the office door open, and Hermione stepped out. Together, they walked in the direction of the Ministry canteen. "Makes sense, though, I'm sure plenty of the Death Eaters followed their master's footsteps and drank their blood to survive. Just don't work too much, you have the staff to help you, Hermione. You've been looking a little…"

Hermione glanced at Harry and noted his hesitation to finish the sentence. "Oh please, do continue. I'm sure whatever you say will just do wonders for my confidence."

"I just worry about you, that's all."

"I know you do."

"You're overworking."

"I'm not."

"There's rumors Hermione."

That gained her attention, but she wasn't too concerned. "Aren't there always rumors about us three? I can't go a day without some paper writing that I'm having a horrid affair with you or Ron. I'm sure they'll use this lunch to have a headline about us cheating on Ginny in the morning paper."

Harry sighed and gave Hermione a warning look to show he was serious. He didn't get the chance to continue though because they had just made their way into the canteen and too many people were around to hear the conversation. They both got in the queue, bought a sandwich and then they made their way to the very back of the room where no one else was around. Hermione added a muffliato to keep the conversation private. It didn't take Harry long to get back to the subject at hand. "There's a rumor going around that you were attacked in your office last week and couldn't defend yourself. Some of the rumors are saying you've been stripped of your powers because of something you did in the war, which of course I know isn't true."

"So what exactly are you asking here Potter?" Hermione asked, her voice growing hard. She didn't like to be accused of something, and she hated, even more, when people thought she showed some kind of weakness. "If you believe that I've committed some crime and managed to get out of it without telling you, then you don't know me too well."

"You only call me Potter when you're pissed," Harry observed. He leaned forward in his seat, laying a hand over Hermione's hand. "Listen, I do know you which is why I'm here and asking you for the truth. I know you haven't done anything, that's just some Slytherin in research trying to get at you. However, I've heard from your assistant that there might be more to the rumor. I heard her talking in the corridor to her boyfriend about it. We're friends Hermione, best friends. If you're overworking and it's affecting your magic, then it's my job as your friend to make sure you get a break."

Hermione hesitated, but then she placed her sandwich down and straightened in her seat. Harry was like her brother, the only family she had with her parents still in Australia. She had tried to restore their memory, but it hadn't worked. Hermione tried a lot of healers, searching for a while, but nothing had worked. The only magic available was dark and could affect their parents in a terrible way if it went wrong. Hermione couldn't take that kind of risk, she loved them too much. It broke Hermione's heart to leave them, but they were happy and had adopted a little girl.

"You remember the night in the Malfoy Manor when Bellatrix had me?" Hermione asked. She didn't wait for an answer, of course, he remembered. "She carved into my skin, which you know, but what none of us knew at the time was that the blade she had used was cursed. It had some type of blood curse to it, so now my magic is getting weaker. I haven't told many people Harry; I haven't known very long myself."

Harry's expression was cold as he absorbed the information and shock flooded him. After a moment he came to his senses and placed his hand over hers. "We'll do everything we can to fix it. I'll get all the auror's onto it, and we'll find some way to stop the curse. I'll go with Ron to Azkaban and interview the Lestrange brothers, perhaps they'll be able to help us with some information."

"Harry," Hermione interrupted. "I know you're trying to help but bulldozing your way into this won't help. I've done a lot of research and spoken with a curse expert. It's a blood curse, I don't have much time left, but I'm doing everything I can to stop the curse. You just have to give me time. I don't want people to know yet."

Harry didn't seem too pleased; he didn't like the thought of sitting back while his best friend slipped away. "What are you trying to do? I can help. You can't just tell me something like that and expect me to get on with my day. We're family Hermione, I'll do anything for you."

"I know you would," Hermione replied, and she squeezed his hand. "The curse expert told me the blood magic could be stopped if I get some wizarding blood into my system. A pregnant witch shares blood with the fetus. If I can get pregnant with a magical child, it should stop the curse."

"A baby? I can help Hermione. We can find someone to help and if we can't, I'm sure Ginny would understand."

"No Harry, you have Ginny, and it needs to be a pureblood wizard. This stays between us, okay?" Hermione gave Harry a stern look before she continued. "The twins are helping me. We just have to hope I get pregnant in time. I'm on a lot of potions. I'm giving myself the best chance."

"It should have been me," Harry said, his voice low. "It should have been me that night, not you. Bellatrix went after you just to get to me. I'll never forgive myself for that night."

"Don't give her the power to ruin your life, even when she's in her grave," Hermione told him. "Will you help me with my secret? I don't want the others to know yet. Not until we know either way what's going to happen."

Reluctantly Harry agreed.

0o0o0o0o0o0

A couple of days later, Hermione went back to the healers' for a check up and review. She wasn't pregnant. The healers were quite concerned because she was on a lot of potions. They were meant to increase her chances of falling pregnant quite drastically. They needed answers and Hermione went on to have more tests.

After the healers' appointment, Hermione made her way to the twins' shop to inform them of what had happened.

"They think it might have something to do with the cruciatus curse I endured from Bellatrix," Hermione informed them. They were sat at the back of the shop, with the twins sharing a work bench as they listened. "They've upped some medications, and I need to give myself an injection every night to try and increase my egg production."

"You can still get pregnant, though, can't you?" George asked, a frown crossing his handsome face.

"Yes," Hermione replied. "They hope so at least. The curse might have damaged the lining of my womb which they must not have checked when I got my physical. I'm on some potion to fix it. The potions are strong, so I might feel quite ill for the next few weeks."

Fred rubbed his hands over his trousers, wiping away the recent spillage of the potion he'd been making, "How ill? You can move in with us if it's going to be hard for you Hermione. It might make things easier and at least you'll have someone to look out for you."

"I'll be okay, I just need a little bit of a break the next few days so I might take some holiday time while I get through this medication. I'll let this get into my system then we can start trying again. Is that okay?" Hermione asked the boys.

Fred and George stood, and they both made their way over to Hermione.

"Fine with us," George replied.

"Whenever you're ready," Fred agreed.

"Just don't overdo it."

"Take things easy."

"And we'll be here."

With the boys supporting her, Hermione kissed them both goodbye and returned to her flat for a well-earned nap. She was more tired with the hormones and the curse draining her. After a few hours, she woke up and made a start dinner. While it cooked, she took a seat on the couch to give herself the injection. Hermione had never liked needles. Her parents had taken her to a nurse for a holiday vaccine as a child, and the nurse had been very rude and abrupt to little Hermione, scaring her. She had developed a fear of needles and had avoided them since. This injection was important. Instead of a potion, the healers had given her an injection which contained less magic. They didn't want too much magic in Hermione's body in case it affected the future fetus and produced a squib.

Holding her breath, Hermione pressed the needle into her skin, gasping at the pain as she pushed the plunger down. When it was all gone, she carefully pulled the needle out and let out a breath of relief. Hermione had to do this for two weeks, and she had no idea how she was going to get through that. One thing she hadn't missed in the magical world was their lack of needles.

Hermione's fire flared to life just as she disposed the of the needle and Fred's face appeared in the flames.

"Hey Hermione, sorry I know you're resting but is there any chance you can come and give us a hand?" Fred asked. He looked calm, but there was something urgent in his gaze. "We've got a bit of a situation in the shop, and it's getting out of control."

Hermione frowned and quickly grabbed her wand off the couch. "I'll be through in a moment, I just need to turn the cooker off, and I'll be straight through."

Fred's face disappeared from the flames. Quickly Hermione turned her dinner off and went back to the floo. She called out the twins' shop, and almost instantly regretted her decision. She should have called out the twins' flat. Instead, she was transported to the shop which was flooding, rapidly.

Fred came running through the door after making the fire call upstairs. George and Verity were standing on the desk where the till was, both of them shooting spells to stop the ceiling from raining.

"What happened?" Hermione called over the raising water. It was up to her knees and rising quickly. Her jeans were soaked, and her white shirt was almost transparent from the rain. Thankfully she had a bra on to, or else she would have given the twins and Verity a good show.

Fred made his way and helped her onto a table top. "We got a parcel. I opened it in here just after we had closed. Next thing we know there's a flash and the place is flooding. We've been trying for twenty minutes to get it to stop but nothings working. Any ideas?"

Hermione raised her wand, trying to remember the spell from her old textbook. She hadn't used the spell before, and it was meant for the weather, not pranks and accidents. "Prohibited Tempus Vernum," Hermione shouted, her voice echoing despite the noise of the rain.

Nothing happened.

"Damn it," Hermione muttered, glancing at Fred. "I've been having a bad day, do you think you could give it a go? My magic feels a bit off today."

Fred raised his wand, and George did the same. The twins both called out what Hermione had said and almost instantly the rain stopped. The ceiling slowly started to form back into the white hardened top, and the clouds vanished. The spell seemed to break whatever spell was being used to hold the water inside the shop, and it spilled out of the door and onto the street. A bit of water left through the shop door, but not much as the rain was vanishing without any further magic required.

"Well Miss Granger, top marks for that," Fred grinned at her. He moved closer, his hand going to her waist. "Thanks, love, we owe you one."

"Yeah," George said climbing off the table, then offering Verity his hand to help her down. "Freddie and I were thinking of turning this place into a swimming pool if you hadn't arrived to stop it."

"Thank heavens for that, I can't swim," Verity said. She thanked Hermione and moved towards the doorway. "I'm going, I need a change of clothes after that shared shower. Thanks for helping us Hermione." Verity vanished out the door.

Fred climbed down off the table, and both the twins offered a hand to help Hermione down. She took their hands, grateful because she wasn't feeling as strong today.

"I'm a bit disappointed, I was hoping we would have caught you in your pajamas and had ourselves a bit of a show in this rain," George told his, his gaze going briefly to her breasts to emphasize his point.

Fred placed a hand on Hermione's hip, bring her close to his chest. "Can we treat you to dinner, as a thank you?"

"You saved our necks love."

"Or rather, our shop."

"That too."

Hermione grabbed Fred's hand from her hip and stroked her fingers with his wet hands. His hand was tough and hardened from his many years of holding a broom during Quidditch. He had a few blisters from his potion making, and Hermione reminded herself to buy both the twins some gloves for protection. "I've got dinner almost finished up," She replied. Both the twin's smiles deflated, so she quickly changed tactics. "I do have too much food cooking. How about you two get dried up and come over mine in ten minutes? Afterwards, we can start working on some spells to dry up this shop and products."

"Sounds like a good plan," Fred agreed. He pressed a kiss to her cheek and raising his hand from hers to stroke a finger down her cheek. It was an intimate gesture, something partners would do when they cared for the other. Hermione had to keep reminding herself she wasn't a partner; they had a deal, nothing more. They didn't have a future other than sharing a child. When Fred left, George moved closer to Hermione and raised a finger to stroke over Hermione's bottom lip, then he swooped in for a kiss. He sucked her bottom lip into his mouth, nibbling in a teasing manner before he deepened the kiss.

"See you soon love," George said, his voice low before he left Hermione stood there, turned on and confused.

With the twins gone, Hermione returned home and heated the food as she changed into some dry clothes. She used a drying spell on her hair and then started dishing out the food, just as both the twins popped into her living room. George went to the kitchen and gathered the knives and forks while Fred went to pour them all a drink. None of them wanted water, surprisingly.

Finally, they all sat down for the food and tucked in. Hermione hadn't realised how hungry she had been until the delicious flavors passed her lips.

"Good cook, fantastic witch, and a demon in the bedroom," Fred said with a shake of his head. "What a lucky set of twins we are."

"Very true Fred," George smiled.

After eating dinner, they both sat on the couch, talking and joking long into the night. Their simple touches didn't go unnoticed by her either. Both the twins would brush their hand against her leg, stroke one of their hands against her when they were joking. They didn't touch her in a sexual way, but something in the way they were touching her felt much more intimate. Like a partner, instead of a occasional lover.


Chapter Text

 

Hermione awoke with a start; her heart thumped hard against her chest. Sitting up, she clutched the sheet to her chest and glanced around, trying to find the source of the noise. Hermione had stayed over at the twins' the night before. Fred had been working late, so she'd stayed with George. They had both had a great night, a hot night filled with orgasms and passion. She didn't make it a habit of staying over too much, afraid to wear out her welcome. Tonight, she'd been far too tired to head home and slept in George's arms.

"What's wrong?" George muttered, his face buried in his pillow. "Sleep Hermione."

"I heard a noise," Hermione insisted, then shushed George as she listened, her gaze focused on the dark room.

After a few moments of silence, Hermione heard the noise again. Now she knew why she'd woken with such a start. The noise was a scream; a heart-breaking scream Hermione had heard before. It was the kind of sound someone made when they were terrified, when they had seconds to live and didn't want to give up their grip on life. It got George's attention too, who sat up slowly, rubbing a hand over his face.

"Wait here; I'll go see to him," George spoke, climbing out of bed. He pulled on some boxers, then he disappeared out the door, without a light or his wand. Hermione waited for a few moments, listening, but the noise of the screams continued. It broke Hermione's heart to listen to him. She had memories of people screaming like that, during the battle of Hogwarts. Many people had died that day, some in a brutal way, murdered by Death Eaters.

Climbing out of bed, Hermione put on one of George's shirts and then tiptoed to Fred's room. The door was open slightly, with a bed lamp switched on to show the twins huddled on Fred's bed. George sat on the bed, his arm around his twin, propping him up against his chest. Fred was still asleep, muttering words of fear and horror. His face was contorted in pain. George was whispering words to his brother, trying to pull him out of the dream but nothing seemed to be working.

"Is he okay?" Hermione asked, stepping into the room.

"He's been taking the dreamless potion, but they haven't been working lately," George replied, holding Fred's body as it shook slightly. "Potions can only work for so long before your body builds up a intolerance to them. He's been taking them too often."

"Can't you see a healer about it?" Hermione asked, moving to sit beside them both. She ran a hand through Fred's hair. He was moaning less, waking from the dream. "We've all had nightmares, but this isn't normal George."

"It's a side effect from the potions," George explained. "He took some dark potions after the incident with the wall; it was the only way to keep him alive. It made his bad dreams worse. The medi-witches believe he's reliving the incident in his dreams, but with the side effects, his body can feel the pain he went through. So it's like he's really getting crushed by the wall every time he sleeps."

Hermione couldn't believe it, the pain and horror of going through that every night. To relieve the worst moment of his life time and time against was horrific. She took Fred from George's arms and pulled him close to her, her hand stroking his face, comforting him as he woke from the dream. He was still half asleep, his chest heaving from the nightmare when he partially opened his eyes.

"He can't take the potion anymore," Hermione said firmly. "We have to get rid of all the supplies for it because it's not working. He's getting himself addicted for nothing. We'll find something else; there has to be another way. Fred's never spoken about it; he's never mentioned this to me. You have of course, but he's never brought it up."

George looked conflicted, but a hard stare from Hermione made him sigh, "He's been worried about how you would react." Hermione went to comment, but George cut her off. "Not about this, he knows you wouldn't care and would try to help. He's worried how you would take it when we have a baby. He doesn't think he's fit enough to look after a kid at night. I mean, you can see where he's coming from, can't you? Would you let us have the baby overnight if this was how Fred slept?"

Hermione's eyes widened slightly at that. She hadn't even thought about any of that. Fred had, obviously. Despite how much she wanted to deny George's words, it was true. While Fred was like this, he couldn't look after a child during the night. He wouldn't wake up if the baby was crying. He couldn't look after his own child unless someone else was there with him.

"I thought the dreams were getting better," Hermione stated.

"I sleep on the floor, every night you're not here. The only time I don't is when he's taken the potion. He worries about me not sleeping, not that he should, the stubborn git," George explained. There was no malice in his words. The twins would do anything for each other.

After a little while, Fred woke up completely, his eyes' fully open to meet Hermione's gaze. Hermione saw a soft sigh being released as Fred realised she'd witnessed his nightmare.

"I'll give you both a minute," George said, standing and leaving the room.

"Sorry," Fred murmured, moving away from Hermione. He took a seat on his bed, leaning against the wall beside Hermione. "You should go get some beauty sleep, Hermione. Not that you need it."

"I'm not going anywhere until we talk about this," Hermione refused. She looked over at Fred, but he had his eyes closed and had a look of defeat on his face. It was still so strange to see this side of the twins, the emotional side where they had as many problems as everyone else. It was a part of them that people rarely saw. "I know you're worried about the future Fred, but you can't keep hiding this from me and taking the potions. They aren't working; your body has become too used to them."

Fred sighed, "I'll stay off them for a while; then I can start taking them again. Once I've had them out of my system for a while, they usually work."

"You can't be on a dreamless sleep potion with a baby in the house," Hermione pointed out.

That got Fred's attention, his head turned to her, "Just don't punish George over this, he deserves the chance to be do all that."

"So do you," Hermione replied, running a hand down the side of his face. "I want you to get another opinion, to see an expert on this and get some help. This isn't healthy Fred; there must be some dark magic at work for the dreams to be so intense. I'll do whatever research I can; we'll get you through this."

Fred sat up a bit and pulled Hermione to his side. He pressed a kiss to her head, "I don't deserve you, Hermione, you've changed things for the both of us. Ever since you came to us, things have been better for George and I. We were stuck in a rut. Things were constantly the same and never changing. With you to focus on, we had a chance to look at ourselves."

It was a very heartfelt moment for Fred and Hermione reached up to press a kiss on his lips. The kiss was slow and passionate, full of the tension they were both feeling. Fred's hand went to the back of Hermione's head, and he deepened the kiss. After a few moments, they broke apart. "I want you to get more help. Get off the potions and get some support with that. Go to the healer I went to and see if they can help."

"I don't want people knowing that I-"

"I can come with you and help with that," Hermione told him. She blushed slightly at the memory of what she'd done to her own healer. "I didn't want anyone knowing about my scar; I wiped my healer's memory when she realised what was wrong. I know they can't say anything because it's a private consultation, but I know our faces always make good headlines in the newspapers. I didn't want to run the risk of money turning her head. That and I didn't want anyone to know."

Hermione saw Fred's gaze go to her arm, the place where the 'mudblood' letters were carved into her skin. It was getting dark and a little deeper. Hermione knew it was only a weeks before they ran out of time to find a cure.

"No more potions," Fred promised. "Sometimes, when I'm waking up I can't catch my breath. I'm worried one day the side effects will be so strong I won't be able to breathe."

"No more potions," Hermione agreed, meeting his gaze. "And you get some help, more advice. Whoever you went to shouldn't have just written this off. You need them to do something. I'll research this, and I'll consider the Muggle techniques for this."

George poked his head in, a sad smile on his face. It was easy to see how much the twins cared about each other. They'd been struggling with their problems for a while, and no one else had noticed. "Room for one more?" George asked, stepping into the room.

Fred and Hermione climbed into bed; Hermione was in the center when she held the blanket up, allowing George to fill the small space. It was a tight squeeze, but for tonight, no one cared. They woke up Fred twice more that night and each nightmare was worse than the last.

"I'm worried about him," George whispered to Hermione, watching as Fred slept peacefully after several attempts. "He's never been the same since the wall. I don't know if it's the dark magic, the damage to his frontal lobe or the lack of sleep."

"We'll make sure he's okay," Hermione promised, turning to snuggle into George's chest. "We'll find some way of helping him. I promise."

0o0o0o0o0

The next day Hermione had a day off, so she enjoyed a later than normal morning in her own bed. She felt weak from the medication and the curse. She needed time to recover and help her body regain its strength. Hermione knew time was running out quicker than expected. She felt so weak, so utterly done in at the end of every day. There was very little hope for her if the pregnancy didn't happen in the immediate future.

After a shower and some brunch, Hermione was just tying her hair up in a messy bun when she heard the floo. Expecting one of the twins, she walked into the living room to find Harry, stood nervously fidgeting in front of Hermione's floo.

"Harry?" Hermione asked, raising an eyebrow. "Shouldn't you be at work?"

"Erm... no actually, I put some holiday time in, but don't tell Ginny," Harry said, moving forward. "I was wondering if you could help me, actually. I knew you had today off, so I was hoping to drag you away from whatever book you were reading to help me out with something."

Hermione frowned, it was so unlike Harry to keep secrets, "If you're lying to Ginny about something, I'm not sure I want to help you."

"I need to buy an engagement ring," Harry confessed. "But I'm so lost when it comes to them, and Ron is no help. Actually, I think Hagrid would have been more help than he was last week."

Hermione felt the shock flood her. She knew they were serious, but she didn't know Harry was so ready to move to that step of the relationship. Hermione felt so happy for her friends. They both deserved a wonderful life together, to make up for all the hurt they'd both been through along the way. With a smile, Hermione launched herself at Harry, wrapping her arms around him as she hugged him and laughed.

"So that's a yes?" Harry laughed.

"It's an absolutely, Harry Potter," Hermione replied.

Harry and Hermione spent the morning shopping around the different jewelry stores. It was a hard decision to make, something important. Harry was nervous about it and wasn't sure how or when he planned to propose. So far, it was only the golden trio that knew about the proposal, and that was how Harry wanted it to stay. Too many people knowing would only mean Ginny finding out before Harry had even gotten down on one knee.

After a few hours around the shops, Harry and Hermione were giving up any hope of finding the right ring.

"They're nice, but they are just not right," Harry sighed. "I don't know what I'm looking for, but something about them isn't right."

"Was your Mum buried with her rings?" Hermione asked, an idea forming. "I read up in a book that most witches and wizards aren't buried with their things if they have children to pass things down too. It's traditional for pureblood families to pass down wedding rings to their eldest son. They usually pass down the engagement ring to their eldest son too. Or any son for that matter, they always preferred to give it to the boy, if they had one to keep it with the family name."

"My Mum was muggleborn," Harry pointed out.

Hermione rolled her eyes, "I know that, but your father wasn't. He was pureblood, and I would like to bet the Potter family had a rather old and traditional set of rings that have been passed down the family for a few generations. Typically, the rings are spelled so after the dead are placed in the ground, the rings vanish and reappear in the family vault for the next generation to use."

They were walking down a muggle street when Harry paused at the information and turned Hermione's way. "I've never actually looked around my vault. It's got some things, mostly just old fashioned furniture and stuff. It could be in there though, if you're right."

"Let's go then," Hermione smiled. "It's worth a look. Could you imagine anything better than your Mum's ring on Ginny's finger? It would be a link to your family forever!"

"I hope you're right," Harry said, the excitement building.

So, the pair made their way to Gringotts. Hermione had only been back a handful of times since they'd broken in last year. The goblins were still very cross with the trio for breaking out on a dragon and stealing from them. In fact, they had refused to help Harry at first, on his very first visit back to the bank after the incident. Voldemort had killed so many of the goblins last year after the break in, the ones remaining had held a grudge ever since. They were glad that Harry had defeated Voldemort, but they were still outraged that anyone had been able to break in and steal from their bank. Kingsley had stepped in and had a bit of an argument with the goblins until they'd eventually agreed to let the trio use the bank. Now, they were just merely unpleasant to Ron, Harry, and Hermione. It was a step up from completely ignoring them, at least.

After a bit of travel down to the Potter vault, they had searched around for quite a bit until they came to a wooden box. Harry had seen most of the stuff before, but he had never found any jewelry.

"Nothing," Harry said glumly.

"This is something," Hermione said, holding up the small wooden box to show Harry. "It's so beautifully carved and won't open for me. There has to be something inside." Hermione passed the box to Harry, and the moment he touched it; the box lit up, and the lid opened. Inside were three beautiful rings. One was an engagement ring, a large green emerald in the middle of a beautiful silver band. It had crystals around it, and it was the best engagement ring Hermione had ever seen. The wedding rings were simpler. Silver bands with a few carvings and crystals set in the band. Inside one was Harry's name and the other, Ginny's married name.

"Wow," Harry said, looking at them. He smiled at Hermione, holding each ring up, in turn, to look at it. "Hermione, these are fantastic. It's exactly what I wanted. Thank you."

"They're beautiful Harry," Hermione smiled, "The ring goes with your eyes."

"And my Mum's," Harry smiled.

The pair hugged, and Harry got a bit emotional, having another connection with his parents. After spending a bit of time looking at the other things, Harry and Hermione made their way out of the vault, with an old, but beautiful engagement ring for Ginny.


Chapter Text

For a whole week, Hermione went over and helped Fred with his nightmares. The three of them had worked hard over the last week trying to find a way to help Fred. The healers at St. Mungo's had done more research, but so far, they hadn't found anything that would help. They had examined Fred and even got an expert in to check over Fred's brain. Everything was fine, but they were still certain the dark magic that had saved Fred's life, were the cause of the nightmares. Dark magic always came with side effects.

Hermione had found an interesting study for people with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder who were struggling with their dreams. It was an excellent muggle study with a lot of evidence that gave Hermione hope that there was something to help Fred. He suffered through a traumatic experience, so perhaps the muggle route would work after all. Hermione was still looking into the research of the study, but she hopeful and eager to try out the study.

Fred did show some side effects of addiction, but he was stronger at fighting it than Hermione had expected. George had explained Fred's addiction to the potions had been much worse before, so this time, Fred had some experience with it. It was an exhausting process, especially as they were all running on very little sleep.

"Hermione," a voice called, waking her up in the dead of night. She peered into the darkness to see a Coyote patronus hovering. "Wake up, come quickly."

Hermione sat up in her bed, peering around to adjust to the darkness. She was in her room and had returned home quite late from work. She recognized the voice of the patronus and even remembered seeing the animal in her old DA class with Harry. The Coyote was George's patronus, while Fred's had been a Hyena.

"Fred's struggling to wake from his nightmare, his breathing is getting worse," George's voice said from the patronus. "I'm going to St. Mungo's; I need you to stay with him and keep trying to wake him up. Nothing's helping. I'll be as quick as I can."

It showed how much George trusted Hermione, leaving her with his twin's life in her hands. Quickly, Hermione traveled to the twins flat, making her way to Fred's bed. George was gone, and Hermione took in the scene. Fred was in his bed, shaking with his head thrown back. He was making a strange noise at the back of his throat, a choking sound.

Hermione thought back to the words Fred had said only a week ago. 'Sometimes, when I'm waking up I can't catch my breath. I worried one day, the side effects will be so strong I won't be able to breathe.'

His fear had come true.

Making her way over to the bed, Hermione climbed in beside Fred and pressed her lips to his ear. She had to wake him from the dream; it was the only way to stop all the pain and suffering. She didn't know the spells to help his breathing; she wasn't a trained healer. Besides, he actually could physically breathe, but it was his mind and the dark magic telling him he couldn't. That was the problem.

"You're going to be fine," Hermione whispered in his ear. "George has gone to get some help, but you're going to be okay Fred. Once we wake you up, we're going to fix this. I'm not leaving this room until we do something about this. I promise I'll fix this." Hermione wrapped her arms around Fred, pulling him against her in comfort. She didn't know what to do; she felt so lost and scared.

It had felt like a lifetime before George arrived with the healer, but in reality, it had only been a few minutes. Hermione jumped out of bed when she heard a floo, but kept her hand on Fred, hoping the human contact would be enough to wake him.

"This is going to be dangerous," The healer said walking into the room with George. She was old, with jet black hair and a faint scowl on her face. "You should never wake someone from their sleep."

"You can't leave him like that," George said, shocked. "He's barely breathing."

"I know, and the only reason I'm waking him up is because it's the dark magic causing it. I've only done this a handful of times. He'll wake up quickly, and he may still not be able to breathe properly. He might not be right at first, confused and not in sound mind. Just prepare yourself. That's why you always get told not to wake a sleeping person," The healer explained.

George just nodded and moved to Hermione. He wrapped his arms around her waist and moved them both back slightly out of the healer's way.

"I stopped him from using the dreamless sleep potions because he was getting addicted. Is this my fault? I shouldn't have done that?" Hermione asked in a rush. "He has been having problems for a while, and it's been getting worse. I've been reading into sleep therapy, but we haven't tried it yet. I'm not sure what else to do."

"Those therapies are splendid and work sometimes, but he took some dark magic in his recovery which comes with many side effects." The healer explained and looked at Hermione. "Most healers turn their nose up at those muggle techniques, but I'm muggleborn, and my father was a soldier." The healer paused, her eyes going to Fred to check his vitals as he began to gasp for air. "He had PTSD after he came back, it worked for him. The dark magic only makes the dreams worse."

"I'll try it; we'll start on it tonight and every night from now if that's what it takes." Hermione could feel George shaking, scared at losing his twin. Hermione stroked a hand along his bare arm in comfort. "He'll be okay."

They were both watched the healer work, she cleared Fred's airways and started working on the spell to wake him up. "He never woke once last night when you went home. He was quite excited this morning, even said when he went a bit longer without the nightmares he'd sleep at Charlie's for the night. He's never slept anywhere but here since the hospital. No one else knows about the nightmares."

"We'll work on this sleeping technique and see if it works. It's really well known for muggles, perhaps it will have some effect on Fred," Hermione offered. She watched as Fred woke with a gasp, sucking air into his lungs. He shot up in bed, his eyes wide with fear and shock. Hermione and George both made their way to him, holding his shaking body as he adjusted. It had been a terrible night.

"I'm sorry," Fred whispered, his eyes shining with tears as he held Hermione and his twin. "I'm sorry, I'm sorry."

"You've done nothing wrong," Hermione told him, stroking a hand down his hair. "We're going to get you someone to talk through what happened to you at the battle. They'll work through this problem for once and for all. We're going to get you better."

The healer spoke outside the bedroom for a few moments with George, and after a final check on Fred, she left. There was nothing else she could do for Fred.

George came back into the room, his eye's fixed on Fred. "You okay Forge?" He asked. "You had me worried there for a moment."

"I know," Fred said, swallowing the lump in his throat. "It was painful; I couldn't catch my breath. Usually, I can wake up with the pain, but this time I couldn't and I felt trapped."

Hermione cleared her throat, "Perhaps there's a way we can get rid of the nightmares altogether."

"We've tried everything. I stayed up three days straight just to see if exhaustion would make me crash into a deep enough sleep, but it didn't. That was one of the worst nights. It's getting worse, more powerful."

George moved to the bed and placed a hand on Fred's shoulder, squeezing it slightly. "Hermione's got an idea, so I want you to listen and try, okay? I can't do that again. I'll give you both some quiet to work on it, but I'm just next door if either of you need anything."

Hermione watched as Fred clasped a hand on his twin's shoulder, squeezing to show his thanks, for everything. They meant so much to each other. They weren't just brothers; they were best friends. George pressed a kiss to Hermione's cheek and then left them alone to work.

Hermione took a seat on the bed and got settled in beside Fred. "A lot of people in the muggle world suffer from something they call PTSD," Hermione explained, sitting up straighter. "It stands for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and that's what I think you have. The side effects make it a lot worse in the dreams, but I think that's the crux of the problem. There is a technique called Imagery Rehearsal Therapy. You have to tell me about the dream, talk it through with me, and we'll work out a happy ending. Then, you need to think about it every time you try to sleep, go through the whole thing with the happy ending. I'll sit here every night and go through it with you if that's what it takes Fred."

Fred leaned over and pressed his lips to her forehead. "I think you might be my happy ending," Fred whispered in the darkness. He moved back to his bed, climbing under the covers and pulled Hermione with him. Fred spooned her, wrapping his arms around her in comfort.

Together, they lay in Fred's bed. He told her the nightmare, the words he'd spoken just before the wall came crashing down on him. At first, there had been darkness, but when he'd gained consciousness, he had been in the Great Hall at Hogwarts. The pain had been unbearable. Fred had seen all the bodies around him, seen the dead faces close to his. The wall had damaged his spine, and for some time he hadn't been able to move, to show a sign of life. He'd been so afraid everyone would write him off as dead.

In the dream, they did. Everyone thought Fred was dead and were saying their goodbyes, despite how much Fred tried to move, tried to scream that he was alive.

"Now, think of a happy ending to it," Hermione whispered. "Tell me again, but this time you can move, you're fine, and you're alive. Molly fusses over you and nurses you back to health. George cracks a joke and shares your hospital bed. We get rid of your pain instantly; people visit you. Think of the jokes you'll carry out in the hospital with George."

"And you?"

"I…"

"You're the one that sees me move," Fred decided. Then, he started from the beginning, this time, with a happy ending.

0o0o0o0o0

The day of the Gemini moon came around, and the Weasleys were celebrating the life of Molly's twin brothers. They had enough money together to change the broken headstones left behind by the Death Eaters last year, and they wanted to celebrate.

Hermione had no idea what someone was meant to wear to a Gemini moon, so she put on a red dress, pulled her hair up into a loose bun and then grabbing a pair of small parcels off the table as she made her way to the Burrow. Flooing was her only mode of transport now she felt too weak to apparate without risking the loss of a limb.

Harry was already there when Hermione arrived, sat on the couch alone as he waited for everyone else to arrive. He had on a black dress shirt and dark jeans, looking quite handsome despite his untamed hair. He got up the moment he saw her and made his way over to her.

"Any luck yet?" Harry pressed. A few weeks had passed since Hermione had told him the truth and the need for pregnancy. Harry had been pushier than the twins combined with any news.

"Nothing yet," Hermione told him. "I've finished up the potion they had me on to heal any spell damage, so now we just have to see if that's done the trick. I'm feeling rather confident this month, though. Everything's in our favor. I'll let you know if it happens Harry."

"When it happens," Harry corrected. He reached out for her hand, giving it an encouraging squeeze. "When Hermione, never if."

Hermione nodded and leaned in for a hug. Harry sighed and wrapped his arms around her, holding her for a few moments as they comforted each other.

The noise of footsteps pulled them apart, and Hermione turned to smile at Ginny as she made her way down the stairs towards the pair. "Hermione that dress is beautiful; I told you it would come in handy. Aren't you pleased I made you buy it?"

"Very pleased Ginny," Hermione smiled back at the girl. The youngest Weasley had one a purple dress; it was beautiful with the delicate lacing over the silk. Hermione and Ginny had gone shopping two weeks ago, and they'd brought a few lovely dresses from the Patil dress shop. "You looking lovely."

"Beautiful," Harry agreed as he made his way over to Ginny. He pressed a kiss to her cheek and then bent to whisper something in her ear. Whatever he was saying made the girl's cheeks as bright as her hair.

Movement behind her caught Hermione's attention, and she glanced back just as the twins stepped out of the floo.

Fred leaned down close to Hermione's ear, "If Potter is whispering naughty things to Ginny in front of her brothers then he's going to have a nasty shock when he does it in front of Bill."

"Can't get anything past him with that increased hearing," George grumbled from her other side. Hermione laughed at that and made a mental note to warn Harry about that little fact. She didn't want him in trouble with Ginny's big brother.

Hermione turned and faced the twins and lifted up two parcels. "As it's the Gemini moon which stands for twins, I thought perhaps it's only right we celebrate you two boys, as well," Hermione said. The twins both received their gifts and then leaned in to press a kiss to her cheeks. "It's not much, really."

"Thank you, love," George said with a smile. They both opened their gift and then grinned when the wrapping paper revealed what was inside. Hermione had ordered them some specialist potion gloves which were comfortable and stopped a lot of potions from burning or blistering the potion maker's skin. The boys did a lot of experimenting which meant their hands always burnt from the spitting potions.

Mr. and Mrs. Weasley arrived a few minutes later, and once all the Weasley children and Fleur had made their way to the Burrow, they apparated to the grave site. Fred had discreetly grabbed Hermione's hand because no one except the twins and Harry knew about her problems with apparition. Once at the gravesite, they made their way along the graves, until they found the brand new gravestones for the Prewett twins. The graves on them the twins name and then each had the words, 'The world will never forget what bravery he showed in battle. With loving Memory of his sister Molly and her loving family. Gone, but never forgotten.'

Mr. Weasley said a few words about the twins, having known them for many years before their deaths. Then, Mrs. Weasley spoke about the battle that had killed them and how it had taken five powerful wizards to bring them down. They really had been powerful wizards.

Afterward, they returned to the Burrow, and the party began. They all shouted a cheer for the brothers and the Gemini moon. The music was turned on, and Fred and George started mixing drinks for everyone. Most people were hesitant at first, but eventually, they started trying the drinks, surprised at how sweet they tasted. Of course, Percy's had been mixed to make him burst into song whenever he opened his mouth to speak.

Hermione was leaning against the doorframe, smiling as she watched the twins joke and tease their sister.

"They've been like that since the day they were born," Charlie said as he approached from behind. He moved closer to Hermione, his gaze following hers to the twins. "Mum always stated that they were born to cause mischief and cheer the world up."

"I think she was spot on then," Hermione smiled. She turned to look at Charlie; her eye's taking him in. He was taller than the twins, handsome with a few scars on his body from his time with dragons. "You've been around a lot more lately, not missing Britain are you?"

"I'm thinking about spending a bit more time here," Charlie admitted. "I might take some time out if people need me too."

"Who needs you too?"

Charlie didn't answer at first, but his eyes went to hers. He seemed to be weighing something up in his mind before he finally spoke, "If you need my help."

"What?"

Charlie quickly went on, "Don't get mad at the twins, they needed someone to talk to about this, and they've only told me, but I know what's going on. They swore me to secrecy, and they were going to let you know tonight that they told me everything. They're worried about you; they think you're overworking and struggling. I completed a fair few courses in magical creatures, I specialised in dragons after, but I've learned more than enough if you need some help for the next few months."

Hermione was shocked by Charlie's words. She hadn't expected that. Of course, she couldn't be upset with the twins. They had been so good to her and looked out for her the best they could. The twins had needed an outside party to talk things over with, and Hermione could understand that need. They were under just as much pressure for the pregnancy to occur.

Charlie's education did come as a shock. She knew the second eldest Weasley was smart and had achieved good OWLs and NEWTs at Hogwarts, but she had no idea he'd learned about the other creatures before going into dragons. Work was getting harder for Hermione. She was just so exhausted that her work was suffering and that was a hard thing for Hermione to cope with.

"What are you offering exactly?" Hermione asked. She lowered her voice so no one could hear, but there wasn't anyone close by.

"I'll help you manage it, you can teach me the ropes over the next few weeks, and then I'll fill in when you need time off to work shorter hours. Afterward, when you have my baby niece or nephew, I'll step down and jet back off to my dragons. I'm not here to take your job, I like being a dragon handler, but I also like helping family and helping creatures," Charlie told her. "It's up to you, think about it. At least when you're getting over this curse, you can focus on you without having to worry about your department. Plus, my filing skills are pretty bloody marvelous, you should see my sock drawer."

Hermione looked away, she liked Charlie and trusted him. He had made a good point, and Hermione was struggling with work. It was better than asking someone she didn't know or trusted at work to help her. The twins wouldn't have mentioned it to their brother if they hadn't planned on suggesting this to her. "How about you come on Monday, and I'll show you around? I'll struggle to hand over the reigns. I've worked so hard for the department since getting the job, and I would feel like I'm losing my job. I know it's silly, but it's hard for me to give up control."

"How about this? You teach me the ropes and then give me the dragon law I heard you were thinking of working on, the one to stop people from using them as protectors like Gringotts did."

"That's a very good idea Charlie, yes, then you can see what you're getting into, and I can slowly hand things over. I'd like to keep my foot in the door to keep me distracted. But I will work shorter days."

"I'm always full of good ideas. I got the brains in the family."

"I can't wait for your siblings to hear that one."

A little while later the party got into full swing, and even Mrs. Weasley was feeling the effects of the twins strong mixed drinks. She was drunk, but Mr. Weasley managed to keep her under control long enough to hide her in the kitchen, away from Bill who had been getting his hair pulled out by his mother trying to tell him how much she loved him.

After a bit of a search, Hermione found the twins in their old room, sat on their own bed and talking quietly. They went silent the moment she entered.

"Hiding?" Hermione asked, with a smile on her lips. She was sure Charlie had already seen them before she'd managed to track them down. "Nothing to tell me, boys?"

"We didn't mean to break the trust Hermione," George started. "Really. We just needed to talk to him."

"Let it out a bit of what's going on. We won't be telling anyone else, and Charlie won't say anything. We still should have asked you first, though," Fred agreed.

"Pressure gets to us; each month we feel responsible when it hasn't worked."

Hermione sat down next to George and leaned over to squeeze his hand. "I wish you had asked first, but I get it. I actually think what you two did was a great idea and I wouldn't have let you if you had asked me first. He's offered to help me with work, and we're going sort something out."

"Thank Merlin," Fred joked, letting out a breath. "We were worried you would march up here, dump us and then go running back to Ron."

"Imagine the kids," George said with a mock grimace. Hermione hit his arm, and he laughed, putting his arm around her shoulders. "It'll all work out, just you wait and see."

"It's not your fault," Hermione told George and then looked over at Fred. "I don't want either of you feeling responsible. It's just a bit of bad luck we're having. You two are giving me the best chance I have. I will always be thankful for that, no matter what happens."

"We can figure this out, we're going to get you through this," Fred promised, squeezing Hermione's hand gently.

They sat on the bed, Hermione held the twins' hands in the silence. Even if the pregnancy never happened, at least she knew until her dying day she would live life with a smile on her face. The twins had been so wonderful with her. The three of them had grown so close over the last few months, and they were becoming allies, good friends. They cheered her up when she was feeling down, distracted her and kept her positive about the whole thing. It was something Hermione needed. She was so lucky to have them close to her now, aware that her time was running out.

What Hermione hadn't told them, was that she was pretty sure her days were numbered. She was counting by weeks, not months anymore. Time was slipping away far too quickly.

Chapter Text

The party carried on downstairs, most of the Weasleys were too drunk to notice the absence of Hermione and the twins.

Hermione felt exhausted; she couldn't face any more fighting, not when she had such little time left, and the rest of the family deserved to know. Hermione wanted to prepare them for a goodbye; she had to set things in motion for her final few weeks.

"I'm going to tell them this Sunday," Hermione announced, lifting her head from George's shoulder. They still sat on Fred's old bed at the Burrow, the twins sitting either side of Hermione. She felt them both stiffen at her words. They knew what her words meant. "They deserve to know the truth, I thought I could fix this, but now, I think it's time they know. I should have told them a while ago."

"Hermione-" George said but paused. "I- please don't tell me you're giving up."

"I have to tell them," Hermione said softly, lifting her chin to look at George. "They need to know. I've been thinking about it for a while, but I haven't been able to admit it to myself. After speaking with Charlie, seeing the way he reacted, I think it's time."

"You think that's why we're upset?" Fred asked, his voice a little harder than normal. "I don't care who you tell, but Hermione, you can't give up like that. There's still time."

"I haven't any time left, I've been studying the curse, and from all my calculations, it might already be too late for me to come back from this. It's already affecting my organs, there might not be a way to reverse the curse anymore," Hermione explained. "We did our best, you two gave me my best shot, but perhaps it's time to think about celebrating the time I have left. I'm tired. I'm so tired of fighting. I've been in battles most of my life; this is just one I can't win."

"This doesn't sound like Hermione Granger," George pointed out. "You're a fighter, strong and ready to overcome this. What's changed? Why now?"

"What's changed is I'm throwing up my insides each morning, I can barely stand up straight in the mornings because I'm so tired and drained. I'm sick of holding out hope for something that's not working. I can't do it anymore. I don't want to die. I'm so afraid, but I'm always expected to be strong and hold everything together. I'm the one they come to for answers because I always solve things. I can't even solve this. I can't figure out a way to keep myself alive. Letting this happen doesn't mean I'm weak, it means I'm finally brave enough to face my future."

George wrapped an arm around Hermione's shoulders, pulling her in close to his chest. "I know love, I know. Time might not be on our side, but for a little while longer, we'll keep trying. Just a few more weeks, please. Give us a bit more time to help you. After that, if it hasn't worked by then, we will admit we've done everything we could. But right now, it's too raw for us just to give up and accept defeat. Let us help fight for you."

"One more month," Fred encouraged. "At least one more month, then we'll see where we are."

Hermione wasn't sure she had another month in her. She wanted to live, but the curse was working its way so quickly through her body. It was probably no use and already too late. She couldn't say no to the twins, not when they wanted to fight so strongly on her behalf. Hermione didn't want to do another month; she just wanted a last goodbye with the twins.

Fred's hand went into her hair, and he turned her face to his. They kissed, with a gentle brush of their lips. George moved as well, pressing his lips to Hermione's shoulder.

The sad thing was, that maybe if things had been differently, they could have had a future together. Hermione cared for the twins, and sometimes she suspected they cared for her just as much. She could see it in their eyes, during the times they forgot about the curse, and they acted like friends, like lovers.

George's fingers brushed the strap of Hermione's dress down, and he pressed kisses to the patch of skin it had been covering. Fred pulled back from their kiss and Hermione placed her arm around his neck and pulled him back down, raising herself up enough to deepen the kiss. Her legs folded underneath her on the bed.

With Hermione raised slightly and turned away, George moved a hand to her waist and pulled the zip of her dress down. It was a long zip, ending just above her bum. George slipped one of Hermione's arms through the dress, until it pooled at her waist on the bed. Hermione lifted herself up, helping George tug the dress from her legs and he threw it across the room. With the dress gone, Hermione was bare to them in her strapless bra and nude knickers.

"We can't, not here," Hermione protested, pulling back from Fred's lips. "They're all downstairs, Molly's like a mother, I can't do this in her house."

"Do you think this is the first time this bed has seen-" Fred stopped mid-sentence, catching his twins warning glance. "Let's go home, Hermione."

Hermione didn't get the chance to protest as Fred grabbed her waist and apparated them both to the twins' flat. They landed on the bed with a thump and George appeared next to the bed seconds later, holding her dress. He dropped it on the floor and made his way to the bed.

"Much better," George agreed, moving behind Hermione.

Fred's lips met Hermione's once again, the kiss deep and full of meaning. They cared for her, so much more than she had realised. With her hands-free, Hermione started to undo Fred's shirt as George continued to undress her.

George made quick work of her bra and threw it behind him on the floor. With it gone, George leaned against Hermione's back and reached his hands around to cup both of her breasts. Her nipples were already peaked, from the chill of the room as well as the desire the boys lit up inside her. George rolled the nipples between his thumb and forefinger.

Hermione squeaked against Fred's mouth at the contact, surprised at the action and attention George was giving her. Fred pressed kisses along her jaw and down her throat as one of his hands wandered down her body and slipped inside her knickers.

Hermione heard the groan of arousal from Fred as he felt her wetness, her excitement about what was going to happen tonight. Fred used her wetness to coat his fingers, and then he pushed two inside her. Hermione moaned, the pleasure filling her. Both boys felt so good; they knew her body so well.

"Our witch always feels so good," George spoke, his lips against Hermione's ear as he pressed up against her back. He was still holding her breasts, tweaking her nipples to encourage a moan from Hermione.

"Yes, she does, George," Fred agreed. His fingers were still moving inside Hermione, curling to find that sweet spot that made her insides flutter. He knew how to get the desired reaction out of her now. They both knew her body so well after all the sex they had shared. It had never been the three of them before, though. Hermione had never felt comfortable enough to be with the twins at the same time. She had been so nervous about being with both boys before, but tonight it felt right. It felt like the perfect way to say goodbye.

With both the boys touching her body, it wasn't long before heat began to build in the bottom of Hermione's stomach. It flared up, making her toes curl as she begged them both not to stop. After a few whispered words from the twins, she came with a mumble against Fred's lips. George pulled her from Fred and gave her a kiss that was just as deep as his twin had.

Fred made quick work of his clothes, pulling them off and throwing them across the room, not caring where they landed. Hermione turned back to him with a blush as George followed suit.

"We don't have to Hermione," Fred offered, sitting further back on the bed, against the headboard.

"I want this," Hermione replied, moving forward to straddle Fred's lap. She hovered over him, lining herself up as George shuffled behind to help steady her, with his hands on her hips. With ease, Hermione lowered herself onto Fred, sinking her body onto his. She felt so deliciously full.

George had his hands on Hermione's breasts, squeezing them as he whispered sweet words into her ear. He told her how beautiful she was, her wonderful she was.

Hermione moved on top of Fred, with his help. She started a slow pace that built up until they were both reaching their peaks together. George's skilled hand helped Hermione, teasing her clit as she reached her orgasm.

Exhausted, Hermione fell in a tangled heap with the twins. George was behind, with his hand on Hermione's hip.

Hermione pressed a kiss to Fred's lips before turning to face George, her back to Fred. Hermione placed a hand on George's cheek, her thumb running over his jaw as she watched his bright eyes. "You didn't get anything out of that, I'm sorry," Hermione said, concern in her gaze.

"Hermione," George crooned. "The three of us being together isn't about which of us gets off first. It's just about being there in the moment, together at the same time. It's the intimacy, being there with you, touching you and holding you afterward."

"Plus, there's plenty of positions we can try if you're worried about getting the both of us off at the same time," Fred smirked. He grunted a moment later when Hermione kicked her foot back into his thigh.

"I want to, please," Hermione pressed. She moved up to trail her lips along his jaw, pressing small kisses up the side of his face until she reached his ear lobe, which she gave a playful nibble. "Let me help you out."

"How could I turn an offer like that down?" George smiled. He stroked a hand down Hermione's hair, pulling her up for a kiss on the lips before drawing back. His eyes flickered over her face, taking in her exhausted expression. "You look exhausted. How about we make this easy? I'll show you what I mean about being there together. Turn back to Fred."

With a frown, Hermione turned back around to face Fred. He pulled her closer, spreading her over his chest as George turned onto his side and shuffled closer. Fred grabbed Hermione's left leg, tugging it up and over his own. It pushed her bum out and towards George.

"We have plenty of ways to get off together, but sometimes it's better just being there, in the moment together," Fred told Hermione, stroking a hand down her hair.

George moved up to Hermione's back, pressing kisses to her neck as he lined himself up behind her. Carefully, he pushed himself inside her sensitive pussy. Hermione hadn't tried it this way before, on her side in bed. George couldn't get as deep, but it was so much tighter and filling for them both.

They moved together in unison. Fred stroked Hermione's clit and teased her nipples as George found his rhythm. They worked together, intimately. George's pace got faster as they got closer, chasing their orgasm. Hermione was sobbing by the time she found her release. It felt too much, her body was already so overwhelmed, she sobbed at the oncoming orgasm, but the boys got her there. She shook in the aftermath as George came inside her

It wasn't anything like Hermione expected. She didn't know what to expect being with both the twins at the same time, but it hadn't been this. The way they had done it was intimate. They hadn't made her feel like she needed to be some gymnast to accommodate them both. They knew she was nervous and had eased her gently into the idea of being with them both.

"What did you think, Love?" Fred asked moments later, stroking a hand down Hermione's hair as she tried to recover. Her body was sensitive, even when George had pulled out of her. "It isn't so bad being with the both of us, is it?"

"We get a lot more naughty and playful than that," George pointed out. "We wanted to ease you into the idea. There's so much more we can explore Hermione, take your mind off your goal and then, perhaps the pregnancy will happen without all the worry."

"Let us show you what we can be like together," Fred encouraged. "There's still a good chance this could work. Give us another month, please."

"Let's rest," Hermione insisted, snuggling close to the twins.

"Hermione-"

"We'll talk about in the morning," George promised, reaching over Hermione to give his twins shoulder a squeeze. "Remember what Hermione taught you about the dreams, go through your exercises and let's get some sleep."

Together, for a short while, they slept in a tangled heap, until Hermione awoke during the night. She felt sick from the curse and sore from her activities with the twins. Her scarred arm was throbbing painfully. Carefully moving from the twin's bed and got dressed.

She couldn't spend the whole night with them. Hermione got dressed, left a note on their table to tell them she was heading back to her home for the evening. Then, she slipped out the flat, heading to her bed, alone.

0o0o0o0o0

Two weeks passed after the Gemini party, and Hermione had been getting everything in place for her future. She made out a Will, left detailed instructions for her department, hoping to help whoever took over after her. She still had time, but she wanted to spend the remaining time saying goodbye to her family.

The twins had tried to visit, but Hermione had blocked their access to the floo. It was too hard to see them; she knew they would just end up changing her mind. Her time was gone now; it was too late to get pregnant. Despite fighting so hard, there was finally a battle Hermione couldn't win. So, today was the day she told her family, the people she had loved and cared the last few years.

It was Sunday, and everyone was gathering at the Burrow for another dinner. Hermione had arrived very late, just to avoid the twins before she made her announcement. She hadn't sent a reply to Mrs. Weasley's invitation; she didn't want the twins knowing she was coming over. The dinner was just being served when Hermione arrived.

"Take a seat," Mrs. Weasley smiled, moving to the table with a giant chicken on a plate. "I didn't know you were coming! There's plenty of food, move up George."

Hermione made her way around the table, taking a seat between George and Harry. Fleur was there with her tiny baby bump and a rather jubilant Bill. It made Hermione's heart clench with jealousy. It had seemed so natural for them, but then again, no one really knew what another couple had been through to have a baby.

Hermione avoided the twins' gaze, but she could feel their eyes on her. They knew what she was up to.

"I'm sorry I arrived late, I've been trying to work up the courage to come. I need to make an announcement," Hermione spoke up. The room quietened, and everyone's eyes turned to her. She felt George stiffen at her side, but Hermione couldn't look his way, not yet, she knew she'd break down if she looked at him. "I found out some bad news a couple of months ago, A couple of you know what Bellatrix did to me." Hermione rolled up her sleeve to reveal the engraved 'mudblood' on her arm. The letters were black now, and the skin around it was turning dark from the cursing spreading. Hermione heard Bill's gasp across the table; he knew what the curse meant from his years as a curse breaker.

"Hermione, don't give up," George tried, but Hermione needed to get this out. She had to tell them now. She wanted to prepare them all; they were a family.

"The blade Bellatrix used held a curse, and it's been spreading through my body for a year and a half now. It's a curse for muggleborns, and it's only ever had one ending," Hermione explained. She felt herself breaking, the tears building. "I've tried so hard the last few months to find a way to stop it, but I've run out of time. I've got nothing left in me to fight anymore; there aren't any other options."

"Hermione!" Mrs. Weasley called, rushing around the table and throwing her arms around Hermione. She hugged Hermione, and both witches battled tears as they sought each other's comfort.

"This is real?" Ron asked, shocked. His mouth was gaping at the news, his eyes flicking around his brothers like expecting someone to announce the big punch line of the joke.

Hermione couldn't say any more; her eyes were filled with tears. She pulled back from Mrs. Weasley and hugged Ron. He stroked her back, comforting her as the news sank in. The whole family was rocked by it. They hadn't been expecting such grave news.

"We can still fight this," Harry spoke up, looking at the twins for support. "There's still time, options to consider."

"There's no time left Harry," Hermione murmured, wiping the tears. "I need to treat each day like it's my…"

"Don't say it," Harry refused. He stood from the table, walking out of the room in anger at the thought of losing one of his best friends.

"He's just angry he can't do anything," Ginny offered. She stood and walked to Hermione, tears in her eyes. "There's nothing we can do?"

"No," Hermione replied. She hugged Ginny; no one seemed to notice the twins standing and leaving the room, together.

Everyone pressed for more, but Hermione gave vague enough answers to satisfy them. They were all in shock, all seeking her comfort, despite it being Hermione with the painful news. They loved her, they all shed tears for her. Fleur was the most affected, surprising Hermione. She spoke softly in French, hugging Hermione with such a tight grip.

"I'll do everything I can," Bill promised, a hand on his wife's shoulder. "I've got contacts from Egypt; I'll reach out to them and try everything."

Hermione agreed and left the room, searching the twins. She wandered upstairs and found them in their room, sat in the silence on Fred's bed. There were still murmurs coming from downstairs, no doubt the Weasleys trying to figure out a way to help fix things. They couldn't do anything anymore.

"I'm sorry," Hermione whispered, her eyes full of tears. "Please don't let us end like this, I can't have you both mad at me."

Fred reached out his hand, and when Hermione grabbed it, he pulled her close. She sat between them, crying as both twins hugged her side.

"We would have been so good together," Fred whispered, reaching up to wipe a tear from his eye. "I think I could have loved you."

"Me too," George agreed, pressing a kiss to Hermione's cheek.

0o0o0o0o0o0o0

Three weeks Hermione was feeling even worse. Her magic was gone. No matter the spell Hermione just couldn't do it. She had to do everything the muggle way. Her magic was so weak she couldn't even risk using the floo. Hermione couldn't make it into work very often, and she spent most of her time at home in bed. The Weasleys all took turns in visiting, but Hermione spent most of her time asleep in their company.

Today was a particularly bad day. No matter how hard she tried, Hermione couldn't keep anything down, and she just felt drained and wiped out. Despite feeling at her worst, she had dragged herself into work to sign some forms. Some of the laws they were trying to get through the ministry were coming up to their deadline.

Charlie was helping; he'd taken well to the department and was a great help. Slowly, he was taking on more and more responsibility to give Hermione more time to rest.

After breaking for lunch, Hermione had returned to her office for a meeting with a big donor. She was halfway through her speech when she swayed on her feet, pausing in front of her presentation material. Everything was spinning; she couldn't see straight. Her head was pounding, and her legs wobbled. With no strength left in her body, she toppled to the floor, her hands not quick enough to break her fall.

Hermione heard the screech of the chair against the floor in the office, then the sound of the client moving. Everything went blank as her eyes closed.

Chapter Text

A noise woke Hermione, but for some reason she couldn't open her eyes. They felt too heavy and no matter how hard she tried, they remained shut. Her body wouldn't respond. It was like being trapped in a dream. Things were quiet, then after some time passed, she could hear voices by her, talking and saying her name as they spoke.

"She's had quite a bang to her head and with the curse running through her body, I'm afraid she might need a few days to recover," a voice Hermione didn't recognise spoke.

"She's going to be okay though, isn't she?" Harry asked. He was close by, perhaps sitting next to her bed, judging by the proximity of his voice. Hermione felt something brush against her fingers and she tried her best to wiggle them, but they wouldn't move.

"She needs more time Mr. Potter, I know you're worried, but this really is the best thing for her body. It'll help her recover, gain strength as her body starts to fight to the curse," the woman said again. "I understand she has a lot of people that care about her and they are all worried, but give it a few days and then we'll wake her up. She's in a medically induced coma. She's too weak and her magic's too low for us to do anything else at the moment. We had to bring in muggleborn doctors to help because magically, there's nothing more we can offer her at the moment. We don't want to risk using any more magic on her in case it hurts them. We have an expert coming in, he knows the most about that curse on her arm. Once he's here, we'll know more."

"Will they be okay?" George asked. "The curse won't hurt it, right?"

"We don't think so, but we'll know more in the morning Mr. Weasley."

Hermione tried to move, speak out and ask what they were talking about. It made no sense. George was calling her an it? Her body wouldn't respond, in fact, she didn't feel anything, no pain, no aches from the curse.

"We understand, thank you," Mrs Weasley agreed. Her voice was soft and gentle. "We're just shocked at the news. Thank you."

Hermione heard a door open and then close. People shuffled and she heard several move closer to her.

"You think she can really hear us?" A twin asked. Fred, Hermione was certain it was Fred.

"I don't know," Ginny said. "Let's just hope she's got enough strength in her to fight this curse."

"If our Hermione's anything, it's a fighter," Mrs. Weasley said firmly.

Things went quiet after that. Hermione heard a few more voices, but she couldn't hear the words. She recognised all the Weasleys though, muttering something close by her. Hermione had no idea how much time passed as she drifted, unable to move, but able to hear bits of conversation. Eventually, everything faded out once more.

0o0o0o0o0

The next time Hermione woke, her eyes opened and she could feel and move every part of her body. This time the pain came rushing back to her head and her arm. The room was a medical room at St. Mungo's; she recognised it instantly. She was laid flat on a hospital bed, her cursed arm wrapped tightly in several layers of bandages, making it heavy and painful to move.

The room was dark, so it had to be very early in the morning or late at night. To her surprise, there were still people in the room. Fred and George were both asleep on a couch, Fred's head laid on his twin's shoulder as they snored softly. Harry was also there, sat on the edge of Hermione's bed and watching her. Finding him staring at her in the dark shocked Hermione at first, causing her to start.

"You scared me," Hermione said, her voice dry. "What happened?"

"Your magic was drained so your body couldn't handle fighting the curse any longer," Harry said quietly. "They had to put you in a magically induced coma to let your body heal and rest. You were right Hermione, like always. Your body couldn't handle the curse anymore and you had weeks left, at most."

"Had?" Hermione asked, trying to sit up but failing. She was so weak. "What day is it? Harry, is this it?"

Hermione didn't feel as bad as before. Her body was weak and tired, her muscles ached, but she felt a little better. Her head hurt from the fall, but she didn't feel dizzy or sick like she had done. Hermione didn't feel like she was dying.

Harry stood up, moving around the bed to stand beside her. "No, you're defiantly not dying. It's still really early days, but your body is starting to clear the curse. It might take a whole month before it's completely out of your system, so you have to take it easy. The healers are intrigued by your case; they all wanted to take blood to experiment before Mrs. Weasley chased them all away."

"How?" Hermione frowned. She couldn't be getting better, it made no sense. Nothing had happened, she hadn't done anything differently. There wasn't anything she'd done to discover another cure. "I don't understand. It's just going away by itself?"

"You're pregnant, Hermione," Harry said softly. "That's why they think it's going to take a little while for you to get over the curse. They're guessing you're only…"

"I'm pregnant. They're sure?"

"Yes, I saw them do the spell myself and the twins were there. They had an expert come down and review your case. The pregnancy is going to take a few weeks before it clears the curse out of your blood, but they are hopeful it should be just enough time to save you. You're going to be feeling a little awful for a while, but it'll pass. You're close to the four week mark now, according to the twins." Harry had a grimace on his face, like he could have done without the twins pinpointing the exact date for the conception.

Hermione felt a huge weight lift off her chest. She knew the curse was coming to its completion, she knew her body and could feel her time running out. It was still working its way through her system, but now she had a cure and hopefully it was just in time to reverse all the damage the curse had done to her.

"How long have I been out?" Hermione asked, looking towards the sleeping twins. Their clothes looked dingy, well worn. "It's been a few days, hasn't it?"

"About five days, they had an expert review you and he wanted to leave you in the coma until the baby's blood was linked with yours, but the other medical staff fought against it," Harry said with a shrug. "We've all been going out of our minds with worry. It was horrible seeing you lying there, not moving. The twins barely left your side."

"Neither have you," Hermione pointed out, finally taking Harry in. He looked tired, his clothes horribly wrinkled. He smelt a bit too; clearly it had been a few days since he'd showered. "You should head home, get some rest. I'm okay. It's a lot to take in and I'll talk with the experts in the morning."

Harry looked hesitant, but eventually he agreed. With a kiss to her cheek and a gentle hug. Harry left the room and went to inform the medi-witch on duty that Hermione was awake. Then, he went home for some well earned sleep. The rest of the Weasleys had been visiting, taking turns to watch over her, although the twins never left. Harry promised to send a letter to let the rest of Weasleys know she was awake and feeling okay. They didn't need to run themselves down, especially if none of them had gotten much sleep lately.

A medi-witch came on, checking over Hermione and making sure she wasn't in any pain. Hermione answered the questions, trying stay awake but she felt so drained. After the medi-witch got her vitals, she left Hermione to sleep.

Hermione glanced over to the twins, watching as they snored softly on the couch. She should have woken them, sent them home to rest, but they looked too tired. She wasn't up for a fight either, she didn't think they would leave. With a sigh, she turned over and went to sleep, a hand on her stomach, thankful for her little miracle.

0o0o0o0o0

In the morning, Hermione felt a lot better and her headache had lessened slightly. She was still tired, the curse was still in her body, but the news of the pregnancy was enough to raise her spirits. She was hopeful, there was a chance this would work, a very good chance.

"Morning sunshine," George smiled, sitting on the edge of the bed, watching her. Fred was by his brother's side, both of them staring at her, their faces etched with concern. "You look a lot better, feel okay? Do you want some more painkillers?"

"Good stuff," Fred said, nodding to the machine floating at Hermione's side. It was a potion bottle, spelled to release a measured cupful when the patient wanted something for pain. Hermione wasn't surprised in the least the twins had tried some of her painkillers, but she didn't comment on it.

"No, I don't want any. I'm sore, but okay," She said, raising herself on shaky arms so she could sit up properly. It was a struggle with her bandaged arm, so Fred moved over and helped her, moving her pillows so she was propped up properly. "You two shouldn't be here, you need to be at home, resting. Go get some sleep, I'm fine, honestly."

"We're not moving until the expert returns with his results," George refused. "We want to make sure everything's going to be okay. Harry popped by an hour ago to check on you, he mentioned the two of you talked a bit the first time you woke up."

"Do you have any questions?" Fred asked. "He said he told you about the baby because he didn't want you to worry yourself."

Hermione nodded, her gaze moving from the twins. "I have a confession. I hadn't taken any of the potions or injections when the three of us..,well, you know. So this baby, well, we conceived it naturally."

The twins didn't say anything for a moment as they both took in the information. After it sunk in, they didn't seem happy with what she'd done. "You had given up already?" George pushed. "So what was that night? You avoided us after, when you had promised us another month."

"It was a goodbye," Hermione confessed. "It wasn't about conception, it was just something I wanted to do, a goodbye. I'm sorry, I know I promised to try, but I was in so much pain and run down I couldn't, I didn't want to keep going on for more disappointment. You two were always so strong, but I saw how much I was hurting you each month."

"We weren't ever upset with you," Fred replied. "Never Hermione. We were just so worried about you. I thought it would happen straight away, I never even thought it could take this long, not in the beginning."

"Well, it's happened now," George stated firmly. "We managed it, Hermione's having a baby and it's what we all wanted. Let's be thankful for that."

"And telling Mum," Fred pointed out. "We still need to tell her we're the fathers. That's going to be fun. You think we can wait for the baby to be old enough to tell her?"

"Chances are it's going to be a boy with ginger hair, so we probably won't be able to wait that long," George said.

Hermione smiled, amused at the twins. She wasn't looking forward to telling Molly the truth, but she was just so thankful she had something good to tell the Weasleys. She wasn't going to die, she was going to be okay.

As they waited for the expert to arrive, George and Fred filled her in on what had happened in the last few days. Harry had eventually told the family what the cure was, because he didn't have much choice, especially when they found out she had a chance of being okay. He felt bad breaking Hermione's confidence, but he hadn't been left with many options. Molly had asked who the father was, but Harry had just shrugged, lying and telling her he didn't know.

For lunch, the twins went to the shop and brought back a few sandwiches for Hermione to choose from. She devoured a chicken sandwich, very hungry despite the fact the Medi-witches had been using magic to keep Hermione hydrated and her stomach full.

Eventually, the expert healer stepped into the room. He was an elderly man with a beard that went to his chest, bright blue eyes and a grey head of hair. The twins, who had been sitting on the edge of Hermione's bed playing a game of Exploding Snap between them, quickly stood up and collected the cards.

"I'm Healer Orchard, It's lovely to meet you," the healer greeted them. He shook Hermione's hand, then smiled knowingly at the twins. "I'm not going to ask how you knew about the pregnancy cure, it's not very widely tested and we haven't been sure of its success. But, I'm still not going to ask about it, because you've been through enough without me reporting this. What I can tell you, is that you're definitely pregnant and I'm quite certain, from your toxin screenings and blood results, that this baby is going to save your life. It's a miracle Miss Granger, one I never thought I'd live to see. We haven't had much success in the trials. It seems the curse lowers the chances of conception quite a lot, so we haven't had a test subject fall pregnant quite yet. We've only studied the cases that have been done without our study and help. What you three have done, is truly amazing."

"Ah, it was nothing," Fred joked. The healer smiled at Fred, before the twin turned more serious. "So, they're both okay? Hermione? The baby?"

"Yes, from the test results we did the other day, she's improving. It's slow, but it's enough to get her through. Her organs aren't shutting down, which they would be at this point. Her body is starting to build itself back up and this baby seems to be the reason behind it," the Healer explained. He looked at Hermione, a soft smile on his face. "You have a long life ahead of you - cherish it. Now, I must go, but I would very much like to use your case and results as part of my study; I believe we can learn a lot from this. May I?"

"If I can be informed of any findings you have from my case," Hermione insisted. She smiled at the healer, understanding. They didn't know much about the cure, which was why they had tried to keep it secret and undercover. They couldn't offer someone a way around the curse, because they weren't too sure how to without more tests.

The results weren't perfect, but somehow, Hermione had done it. Perhaps if she'd known how hard it would be to conceive, she might not have tried to go that route. Thankfully, she had tried and now she was having a baby. A little person that had already done so much for its mother.

The healer left, with a promise to keep Hermione up to date with his discoveries if she and the twins signed a form to keep the project and their knowledge under wraps. They signed, although they failed to mention that the entire Weasley clan also knew about it. Hermione would have to speak with them about that.

Afterwards, with the healer gone, the twins moved to Hermione's side. A smile on their faces at what they had achieved together. They were all so lucky, so thankful.

"I can't believe we've done it," Hermione confessed. "I can't believe I'm going to be a mother in eight months time. It doesn't seem so far away, now I'm finally pregnant."

"Lets just hope Freddie and I make it that long," George gulped.

"Once Mum finds out she's going to strangle us," Fred agreed with his brother.

"She might just burst into tears, she does that a lot."

"I'm thinking a combination of both, strangle us then cry over the bodies."

"Sounds like Mum."

Hermione rolled her eyes, "She's not going to hurt you, your mother loves you both."

They all got the answer to their debate a little later that day. Molly turned up, overjoyed to see Hermione sitting up and awake. She flung her arms around Hermione's neck, sobbing how glad she was to see her. It had taken some calming, but eventually Molly had released Hermione and took a seat.

"Mum we need to tell you…" Fred began, however, Molly interrupted him.

"I can't wait to become a grandmother," Molly smiled, her eyes on Hermione. "Two grandchilden, within months of each other. It's a wonderful year."

"Er, what?" George asked, shocked. He looked at his twin, then Hermione, who were all mirroring his feelings. "You know?"

Molly gave her son a glare, which softened and she pulled them both to her side. "When are you two boys going to learn that a mother knows everything? Besides, you really didn't think I wouldn't notice you two boys hadn't changed in close to a week? I know you've both been using the hospital showers, but honestly boys, you stink. Get home and get some rest. Hermione and I will be okay. Won't we dear?"

"Yes, go get some rest and a real shower," Hermione encouraged. They hadn't left her side, never for very long. "Mrs. Weasley and I will be fine."

"Molly dear, it's Molly when you're carrying my grandchild."

The twins had been reluctantly to leave, but Molly wouldn't take no for an answer. She'd pushed them out the door, refusing to let them back in until at least a few hours' time. Then, the matriarch had come back into the room and spent time with Hermione. She'd asked Hermione about what had happened, from the beginning, with the curse. They spoke about what the healer had told her that day, the good news. Then, they talked about the baby, a subject that made Molly light up.

Hermione had lost her mother in the war, an unreplaceable woman. She found comfort in the way the Weasleys cared for her. They were a family, a messed up one on the occasion, one that appeared to be continuously embroiled in some sort of drama, but they always loved each other, and they loved Hermione.

Now, they had another little Weasley to love.

Chapter Text

Healers changed the bandages on her arm every day, and it was finally starting to improve. The pain was starting to ease after the first week, but they wouldn’t let her go home until her blood results improved. Hermione had been driving the medical staff nuts with her boredom at the end of the three weeks. She did a bit of studying, but the healers and medi-witches were in and out of the room so much it was hard to concentrate.

The effects of the curse had finally started to settle; Hermione's pregnancy symptoms had begun. Her breasts were sensitive; it was one of the first things she noticed. There was also the morning sickness to contend with. At first, it had been hard for Hermione to tell the difference between pregnancy symptoms and aftereffects from the curse.  Now though, the healers were confident the worst of the curse was over, and they discharged her home, with a promise from Hermione she would stay off work for a little longer.

"Everything's going well," Charlie promised, sitting in Hermione's living room with her work diary on his lap. "I've caught up with everything; I'm managing just fine. We're pushing through that werewolf law next week, so I'm preparing for that. It's a good job, but I miss my dragons. Maybe when I'm hobbling around on a walking stick I can come work for you again. I can’t run from flames forever.."

Hermione smiled as she leaned forward to pick up her cup of tea from the table. She was sat on the couch, in her pajamas. The morning sickness had been terrible the last few days. She was tired, her body battling the remainder of the curse while trying to adjust to pregnancy. Hermione was so thankful for Charlie's help, comforting her and keeping her updated on the department business. Charlie knew what he was doing, and he was good at his job.

"Thank you, Charlie," Hermione replied. "I'm glad you're managing. I should have given you more responsibilities. It wouldn't have felt like such a big step when I fell ill. I miss the work. Being here all day is driving me a little crazy. Kingsley won't let me come back for another three weeks, which is ridiculous. I'm feeling much better."

"You looked a little green when I first came over," Charlie pointed out. Hermione had opened the door to Charlie just an hour earlier. One look at Hermione was all it took for him to sping into action. Charlie had helped her to the couch, made her a cup of tea and a piece of dry toast to nibble on to settle the sickness.

"You had us all so worried. It's a relief to know a baby is coming and you're going to be okay," Charlie said, leaning forward to squeeze her knee. "Just focus on preparing yourself for a bundle of trouble when he comes along. Don't worry about work because I’m on top of everything. If you're that bored I could drop some of the law notes off so you can read them.”

"I'm well prepared for that; the baby is destined for trouble with the twins’ DNA," Hermione agreed, placing her tea back on the table. "Thank you, Charlie, that would be wonderful. It's driving me mad staring at the same four walls every day. Everyone's busy working and catching up on what they have missed. I haven't seen anyone in the last few days, and I've already read most of my books."

"Ron's been building up the nerve to see you," Charlie offered. "Ginny said he overheard mum talking to dad about the baby. Ron was pretty upset when he heard about the twins being the fathers and stormed out the house. He came back with Luna a few days later, calmer, but still pretty pissed about it. I know he doesn’t have a good reason to be upset about it, but you know how he is sometimes."

"He'll calm down eventually and be back to apologize for not being around," Hermione sighed. She’d known Ron wouldn’t react well to the news. At least it was out in the open now, and everyone had time to adjust before the baby was born. "He's always acted before thinking. I'm thankful for Luna. She seems to be one of the few people able to get through to him. She visited me in the hospital the other week. She wouldn't talk about Ron, so I had a suspicion he’d found out about the twins."

"Prat," Charlie sighed, then smiled at Hermione. "I wish I'd been there to see his reaction.  Do you think he smashed a few things and left?"

"He probably stormed out and said a few harsh things about me and the twins to Luna."

"At least you came to your senses and traded up," Charlie joked. "Not high enough, I didn't get an offer to father your children, but still, you did better than my little brother."

Hermione raised an eyebrow. She had heard a few rumors about Charlie, although his family never spoke about it. He was bisexual according to the twins and dating someone. Last Christmas the twins had seen Charlie in a lip lock with Oliver Wood. "And your boyfriend would have been alright with that?"

"Ollie has never been very good with sharing," Charlie admitted. "It's a shame because the three of us would have had so much fun."

"Stop teasing. Now, tell me what you plan to say for the new werewolf law because the Ministry likes details," Hermione diverted the conversation, her cheeks bright red.

0o0o0o0o0o0

The afternoon was Hermione's best time, the sickness would ease, and she would have a few hours to get things done.  Hermione still had some pain in her arm, but it was getting better. The 'mudblood' was starting to lighten up, going from black to a dark red. Hermione still had a light bandage over it, to help with the healing, but it was getting there.

The twins hadn't been around in the last week because they had been so behind in the shop. They had spent most of their time in the hospital, watching over Hermione. The stock making had fallen behind with only Verity and Lee working at the shop. So, for the last week, Hermione had ordered the twins to focus on the business while she rested at home. It had been met with protests, but they had eventually agreed.

Hermione walked out of the kitchen that evening to find Fred and George on the couch. Both of them were looking at her pregnancy book, which she had left open on the table.

"Wow, I never thought you would be the type of girl to buy a porn book, Hermione," Fred said, his eyebrows raised as he looked over George's shoulder to see the book.

Hermione blushed and moved to snatch the book from them. She was reading through the book, looking at the different stages of pregnancy. She had just reached the section on sex, the increase in hormones making the pregnant woman more aroused, as well as a few pictures in the section on the best positions for sex later into the pregnancy.

"If you're going to make fun, neither of you get to read it," Hermione told them primly, putting the book away.

"We have our own book," Fred pointed out.

"Yeah, Charlie bought us Pregnancy for Dummies ," George announced with a roll of his eyes. "The git."

Hermione stifled a laughed and took a seat on the couch, between the boys. George pulled Hermione into his side, as Fred got up and walked into the kitchen. Fred made a start on some dinner for the three of them as Hermione rested with George..

"How's my son?" George asked, a smile on his lips. "Keeping you on your toes?"

"Our baby is fine," Hermione replied. She knew most of the Weasleys had taken calling the baby a 'he.' They didn't want to call the baby an 'it' and with the baby being Weasley, there were good odds it was a boy. Only Ginny was convinced it was a girl.

"You look tired. Are you still taking things easy?"

Hermione sighed, she was trying. "Charlie's going to stay on at work a bit longer," she explained. "He's helping me out for the next few months. I might try to convince him to stay longer, so I can take time off when the baby arrives. Charlie seems to be enjoying it, but I know he misses the dragons."

"He'll do it for you," George promised and pressed a kiss to her forehead. He moved a hand to wrap around her waist, resting his palm on her flat stomach. The twins and Hermione weren't an item, but they had something between them. They hadn't kissed or touched beyond friendly interactions. Sometimes, she caught herself wanting something more, but right now wasn’t the correct time to broach the subject. Hermione couldn't imagine them ever returning to just friends. She knew in her heart; she felt something more for the twins. And Hermione suspected they felt something for her.

They didn't wait long before Fred came out of the kitchen with some food and three bottles of water. He passed everyone their food and took a seat. Hermione played a movie as they ate dinner. Fred and George were still a little confused by television. Every time she played a film for them, they were entranced by it. Hermione could see the ideas running through their minds. She was sure it wouldn't be long before she saw something tv related joke in the shop.

The room was silent as they ate and watched the film. There was closeness between them. A tension in the room that Hermione struggled not to address. She would soon, but for now, she would focus on their future, a happy one filled with a baby and family.  Hermione finally had a future to look forward to. The future was full of questions, but everything was going well. She had no experience as a mother, but Hermione knew the twins would be at her side, supporting her. Mrs. Weasley had been a wonderful mother; Hermione knew she would get the matriarch's support. The baby would be lucky to have such caring uncles and a fantastic aunt.

Hermione glanced down at her lap; the twins each had a hand on her thigh after the food was finished. They seemed to sense her gaze because Hermione felt both their hands squeezing her leg.

"Stop overthinking," Fred told her, leaning closer. "Enjoy the velevision."

"Television," Hermione corrected, then rolled her eyes. Fred had a smirk on his face, but his gaze never left the movie playing. George lifted an arm, pulling her into his side, separating the pair from their playful bickering.

0o0o0o0o0o

As predicted, Ron eventually showed his face in Hermione's flat. He hadn't been around since finding out she was pregnant. He was far too upset to visit when he discovered the child was going to be his niece or nephew.

Ron visited with Luna, Ginny, and Harry. They were all sat on Hermione's couch when she walked out of the bathroom, her hair freshly dried after taking a shower. Ron was sat staring at the carpet when she entered; the other three were smiling, watching Ron squirm.

"Hello," Hermione greeted, moving to take a seat next to Ginny. "I’ll have to put a chime on that floo, you lot are constantly sneaking in without me hearing. Is everything okay?"

Luna nudged Ron, when he didn't respond she whispered something in his ear and gave him another nudge.

"Sorry I haven't been here," Ron said, glancing up at Hermione. "But you weren't exactly telling me everything from the start. I had to hear about the baby from Harry, and about the twins from Mum and Dad."

"That's the worst apology I've ever heard." Ginny stared at her brother with contempt, before turning to Hermione. "He's such an idiot. Ignore him, Hermione. I don't know why he's in such a sulk about it. Harry never told me, but I never went in a huff about the whole thing. Some of us are just happy you're alive and will be okay."

"I'm happy she's alive!" Ron defended, glaring at his sister. He calmed, then looked at Hermione, this time meeting her gaze. "I am happy, honestly. I couldn't believe it when I found out you were dying, but then you found a cure, and you're going to be okay. I just wish you'd told me. You could have at least told me when you told Harry. I thought we were friends."

"I wasn't telling anyone, Harry heard rumors, and I had to confide in someone," Hermione explained. "We both know how badly you would have reacted to the news; I needed support. You would have hit the roof, especially when you found out who was helping me with the baby. Don't pretend you wouldn't. Charlie told me about you storming out of the Burrow for a few days when you found out."

"Come on Ron, if she wanted someone rational and calm to talk with you would be the bottom of the list," Ginny stated. "Now, are we all over this conversation and going to the pub? I'm starving. Practice went on too long, so I missed dinner; let's go eat."

They made their way to the twin's shop first to invite them along for dinner. Ron hadn't been too keen on the idea, but he didn’t offer too many protests by the time they'd reached Weasley Wizard Wheezes. The others waited near the front, looking through the things on display as Hermione made her way through the mass of customers.

Verity was at the till, busy at work with a line of customers, so Hermione didn't bother her. Hermione pushed her way through to the back, where the twins were usually making stock and inventing new products. The door into the workroom wasn't closed, which was unusual. The twins always kept the door shut to keep customers out if they were working.

Hermione made her way to the door, but paused when she heard voices inside. She looked through the gap in the door and saw Angelina and George stood close together.

"I'm sorry," Angelina said, placing a hand on George's shoulder. She stepped closer, her gaze on George's. "I know I was wrong to push you and I want to go back to how it was. I love you, George, it was wrong of me to push you. Can you forgive me?"

George looked conflicted. "Of course I can Ang, it wasn't you though, I know I was in the wrong."

Angelina didn't wait for George to explain. Instead, she moved closer and threw her arms around him. Hermione saw their lips about to meet and quickly pulled away. She couldn't watch them kiss and makeup. They had been engaged before their break up. Now, they were fixing their relationship. It hurt Hermione, but George wasn't doing anything wrong. Hermione and the twins hadn't put any sort of label on their relationship. They were friends, good friends that were expecting a baby together. The twins had done something wonderful for Hermione; they had helped save her life.

Hermione's heart ached. She cared for the twins; she was falling for them. They'd spent so much time together, and Hermione could imagine a future with them. No one had made the first step, but now, it was too late.

Hermione made her way silently to the front of the shop. The customers had died down, and a tired Verity noticed Hermione passing.

"Fred's upstairs with Katie," Verity offered. She paused, realizing her phrasing and cringed. "I mean... Katie came with Angelina, so I'm sure they just went upstairs to give George and Angelina time to talk." Verity’s gaze held an apology.

Hermione didn't want anyone feeling sorry for her. "It's fine, I only popped by to see if they were free," Hermione replied. "Don't mention me dropping by, please?"

Verity looked conflicted but nodded. "Okay, but don't read too much into it Hermione. They've changed the last few months. More than ever before."

With customers approaching the till, Hermione called a goodbye and went in search of the others.

"Are they coming?" Ginny asked, picking up a rubber ball and squeezing it in her hand. "I was going to ask for a family discount on a few things."

"They're busy with the shop," Hermione shrugged.

They made their way to the wizarding pub for some food. Hermione hid her disappointment with fake laughter and conversation. Inside she was hurt. If only she'd spoken with the twins, told them how she felt. The feelings for the twins had crept up on Hermione. Before the curse, Hermione had never looked at them as anything other than Ron's brothers. Until she fell pregnant, Hermione hadn’t been able to make any promises of a future with the twins. She thought she would die and didn’t want to start something she couldn’t finish. Now, it seemed, she had missed her chance.



Chapter Text

"I know pregnant women can have mood swings, but I've worked with dragons better emotional control," Charlie grumbled.

It was Monday morning and just over two weeks since Hermione had last seen the twins at their shop. She had managed to avoid them, not wanting to face any awkward conversations. The distance was good for all of them; it gave Hermione time to process her feelings. The twins were probably a bit annoyed at Hermione's rejection of their owls, but they would get over it.

She felt sure the time apart was good for all of them, but it was still so hard to follow through. Hermione's mood had been sour for the last two weeks, and the pregnancy hormones weren't helping. Work with Charlie Weasley didn't help; he was always such a smart arse. He was getting on Hermione's last nerves. "Perhaps if you didn't stink up my office with coffee, I would be in a better mood," Hermione snapped, her nose scrunched at the smell coming from Charlie's cup.

Charlie moved closer, placing the coffee cup on Hermione's desk, closer to her. "You're just sour because you're not allowed any of the real caffeine. Seriously, though, what's got you so cranky? Hormonal? Hungry?" Charlie clicked his fingers, "Horny. That's it, isn't it?"

"You're fired," Hermione announced, standing from her desk. She stole the coffee cup from the desk, and despite Charlie's protests, she threw it in the bin. She'd introduced him to a muggle coffee shops several weeks ago, and she was starting to regret her actions.

Charlie growled, "That was Chocolate bianco guava flavored."

"Do you even know what guava is?"

Charlie pursed his lips, "No, but that's beside the point. These muggles have crazy flavors, and I'm going to try all of them. Now, can you sit back down and stop trying to move the conversation to a different subject? You've been extra prissy the last two weeks, and you're scaring away the staff. That's saying something too; we work in a department full of creatures."

Hermione ran a hand over her face, using her fingers to rub the sleep from her eye. She wasn't sleeping that well. Actually, she was sleeping terribly. "I'm just hormonal Charlie, I'm sorry."

Charlie sighed but made his way over to her. His arm went to her hip to turn her around, and he held her gaze. Despite all the humor and the bickering, Charlie was a really good judge of character. He knew when people were hiding something. It made him a fantastic boss when Hermione was away or busy.

"Hermione," Charlie said, his voice soft. "Talk to me."

Hermione pulled from his grip and moved back to her desk. She saw the look of disappointment in Charlie's gaze, but Hermione shook her head. She wasn't refusing to answer; she just wanted to show him instead. Opening her desk drawer, Hermione pulled out a magazine. It was a Witch Weekly . Most of it was filled with gossip, but there were a few good articles on the wizarding progress. Occasionally, Hermione saw her own name printed because of the changes within her department. "Page forty-three," she instructed, throwing the magazine to the other side of the desk, in front of Charlie.

He grabbed the magazine and found the  page. Hermione knew the moment he saw the pictures; his face looked how her heart felt, crushed. The twins were regularly pictured in the magazines; all the Order members were. This week, the twins were in the magazine because of a party they had attended. It appeared to be a birthday party for a witch Hermione didn't recognise.

"I mean… Maybe it's the angle of the pictures," Charlie suggested. He was wrong, the angle of the pictures were fine, but it was sweet of him to try. "Hermione, they probably had a bit too much to drink and forgot themselves."

"I don't own them," Hermione stated, her voice cold and hard. Despite how strong she tried to be, her face showed the hurt and pain she felt. The pictures weren't terrible, but they told a story. Fred and George were out at a party with Katie and Angelina. There were pictures of them all dancing together, drinking and then a little later into the evening, the four drunk friends were getting a little too close and handsy on the dance floor. Katie was giving Fred a peck on the cheek in one of the pictures.

"Hermione."

"We're not in a relationship, and I think I've made that quite clear to the boys this week when they've been trying to come over," Hermione said firmly. She was saying it more for her own benefit than Charlie’s.

"Hermione."

"We have never been an item; it's only been about the pregnancy. Now I'm pregnant, I can just…"

"Hermione!" Charlie said once more, this time loudly. It startled Hermione enough she stopped talking and glanced at Charlie. He had a sympathetic look on his face, and he moved around the desk to her. Within seconds she was in Charlie's arms, sniffling as he stroked her hair.

"I don't care," She sniffled.

"I'm sure you don't," Charlie agreed, but Hermione knew it was a lie. He stroked a hand down her back, comforting her. "On the off chance you're a liar and do care, try talking to them. You three were so good together, don't waste that. You've been pushing them away: give them a chance to fix whatever is going on between you three. The twins care about you; I know they do. They're just scared to take the first step; you mean too much to them, and they're probably worried about ruining something."

Hermione sniffled again, her arms wrapped around Charlie. She was hormonal, sad and hurting, but Charlie was there. Despite the headaches he gave her sometimes, he was such a good friend; he was like family.

0o0o0o0o0o0

The pregnancy was a great distraction for Hermione. She spent most of her evenings studying books on pregnancy, as well as guides on looking after a baby. Hermione had never been around children. She was an only child, and none of her family members had young children when Hermione was growing up. In fact, she was the youngest in her family. With little to no experience, she needed to be well prepared before the birth.

The reading was pointless though because, for the first time in a long time, Hermione just couldn't concentrate. Hermione’s mind kept going to the mess with the twins. After a few more days of rejecting their fire calls, they sent Ron round to try and gain some information on what was going on with her. Hermione had stood her ground and refused to answer Ron's questions. He was an informant, nothing more. Hermione managed to guilt him into staying and changing the subject to something other than her and the twins.

Now though, Hermione knew she had to do something. She had been thinking about Charlie's words, and she knew she was being silly. Avoiding the twins wasn't achieving anything.

Hermione knew avoiding the twins was worse than just talking with them and working things out. Perhaps the photos were out of context? Even if they weren't, the least they could all do was sit down and talk about it. Hermione felt comfortable with the twins, and used to be able to speak so freely with them.

Throwing her textbook aside, Hermione gathered all her Gryffindor courage, and she went to the floo. It was time to face them and get it over with.

Hermione arrived through the floo to the sound of voices. It was more than just the twins in the flat, so she turned to leave. Hermione didn't want to have the conversation in front of their friends or family. It could wait until they were all alone.

"Hermione!" Fred called from the doorway. Hermione looked back just in time to see his arm dropping from Katie's shoulder. He looked surprised, but then his face broke into a smile at the sight of her. "Don't go! We're just settling down to play some Exploding Snap. Lee's popped out to get some food. Why don't you join us?"

Hermione looked at Katie, feeling uneasy. She didn't want to interrupt their evening, and she couldn't sit through the twins acting so friendly with their new girlfriends. It was childish, but Hermione was going to blame it on the pregnancy hormones messing with her mind. Yes, that was a good excuse.

"We've ordered a mountain of food," Katie offered.

"I said I would meet with Charlie later tonight to prepare for a meeting next week. I just popped over to see if you would be both be going to dinner on Sunday? Your mother's been asking," Hermione lied.

Fred could see straight through her lies; she could tell by the raise of his eyebrow. He turned to Katie, "Do you mind giving us a minute? Tell the rest I'll be through soon."

Katie nodded, her eyes lingering on Hermione for a moment before sure turned and left.

The moment the door closed behind the blond, Fred crossed the room. Hermione stepped back from him, but Fred closed in on her. "Hermione," Fred said, his hand going to hold her waist and stopping her from turning away from him. "It's not what it looks like, I swear it's not. Katie and I are just…"

"I know," Hermione said, her voice soft. "It's fine Fred. I have no right to get upset about you two, or George and Ang. Honestly, I don't know why I even came over, it was a silly idea. I know you both made a commitment to help me with the curse and pregnancy, but you've both fulfilled your roles now, it's done. I want you both to move on now, to go back to your life and be happy."

Fred's hand went to Hermione's chin, turning her face, so she met his gaze. "I've been meeting with Katie because I'm her sponsor. I'm going to a meeting for addiction, and I've been helping Katie. I swore to George I would finish the St. Mungo's addiction course before the baby arrives. I've been doing well, and I haven't been tempted by the dreamless sleep potion. Katie's new to the program; I only managed to convince her the other week."

Fred held her gaze, giving her a moment to process the information. She believed him of course. Fred had never lied to her before, and he had no reason to.

"I don't know how you feel, but for the last few months, there's been something between us, the three of us. George feels the same. He's not with Ang; they ended a while ago."

"I saw him kissing her," Hermione confessed. "I came into the shop a few weeks back to ask if you both wanted to come for dinner with me and a few others. George was in the back room; I saw them kissing. Verity said you were upstairs with Katie, so I just left."

Fred raised an eyebrow at the information, surprise clearly showing on his face. He stepped back and strode towards the door.

"What are you doing?" Hermione asked, stepping forward to stop him. "Don't make a scene; it's fine Fred. He hasn't done anything wrong."

"It's upsetting you, so it's clearly not fine. George and I knew something was wrong; you've been avoiding us for the last few weeks. We tried to come through, but you either had us blocked on the floo, or it was closed. Now I know which one."

Before Hermione had time to stop him, Fred disappeared out the door and into the kitchen where she could hear the laughter of the twins’ guests. Moments later, both the twins came through the door. They were whispering; George's eyes locked on Hermione's when he stepped into the room. Fred gave him a slight shove to catch his twin’s attention.

"I don't want to interrupt your party," Hermione said, feeling unease with the entire situation. She had chosen the wrong time to do this. It was rude to keep the others waiting because Hermione was being hormonal and bitter about the twins’ relationships. "I can come back later when everyone's gone."

"We're sorting this out," Fred said, closing the door and moving closer. George followed his twin, his gaze on Hermione. She could see the sadness in his gaze; Fred must have explained to him on the way what Hermione had said. "The last few weeks have been awful; I'm not leaving until we work this out."

George sighed, "Ang kissed me the other week because she had mixed signals. She asked me to talk, and I agreed. I knew Lee was starting to have feelings for her, so I thought it was about that. She came in and started talking about the future. She kissed me, but I stopped it and told her I didn't feel that way about her anymore. I told her about the baby, about what we had gone through with you. I explained it all to her. I still care about her; we came so close to a life together, but I don't love her, not anymore."

"I don't love Katie," Fred said. "She knows about the baby too. We have to be open with each other because we're sponsors and I told her what made me want to try so hard. We have a past, I'll admit that, but it's in the past. I liked what we had going, except for the last few weeks."

Hermione took a deep breath, calming herself as she tried to sort through her thoughts. Everything was a mess; she didn't know how to feel. It was good news, and she couldn't deny she had feelings for the twins. Her feelings had grown stronger over the last few months, since the pregnancy. Seeing them with other people had broken her heart, but she had been prepared to move on if that's what they wanted. She hadn't been prepared for such a good outcome. For the twins to be able to explain away their actions.

"There was a magazine with pictures," Hermione stated. "I'm not saying it because I don't believe you two. I just know this was a limited time thing we had going on. You did me a big favour. You saved my life and gave me a child. Now, though, you don't owe me anything, and I want you to move on with your life, to do what you wanted to before all of this."

"We can't do that," George disagreed.

"The last few months have changed things. We have to take that into consideration, and you've changed both our lives," Fred said.

"You weren't the only one needing fixing, Hermione."

"And those magazines are rubbish, we were out with Lee and Verity as well, but you never saw them in the pictures. We're all still friends."

"We've known them since school," George shrugged. "We had a laugh, got a bit drunk, and the cameras got some ill-timed shots, that was it."

"We're skirting around the main issue," Fred pointed out, and his twin nodded in agreement. "We want you to have the right to be jealous. We don't want whatever this is to come to an end because of the pregnancy. What we had was good, the weeks after the pregnancy were perfect."

George moved closer, "We went about this the wrong way; everything moved so fast we didn't get a chance to check on how we felt. How about we start again? We'll go slower, see where this goes. If it doesn't go anywhere, we'll be best friends having a baby."

"But we want it to go somewhere," Fred stated, taking a step closer, so he was beside Hermione.

They were so close; their sides pressed together and only a few inches in front of Hermione. She could feel the warmth of their breath as they spoke, the tension in their gazes as they watched her mull over their words. "I don't want this to end up in a fallout, and then the relationship we share with the baby will be strained," Hermione explained

"It won't," George promised. "Let's just see where this goes. No labels, but no one else. We can get quite jealous too. So we make this exclusive."

Hermione met both of the twins’ gazes in turn, then sighed. Yes, she wanted them to try and have something more than just friendship. She felt the chemistry - the unspoken words as they all walked on eggshells. They hadn't stood a chance at the beginning, things were so rushed to get Hermione pregnant, they didn't have time to assess the growing relationship between them. Back then, feelings didn't matter because Hermione thought she was going to die. Now she had a future, a good one.

"I want to see where this goes," Hermione agreed. "We can try. I like what the three of us have together; it ate me up inside seeing those pictures and not being able to be angry about it, to show how upset I was."

"You need to time to get to know the both us," Fred pointed out. "You've had months getting used to us separately."

"But together," George smiled wickedly. "We're at our best."

"Okay," Hermione agreed, her heart hammering in her chest. She felt excitement and hope fill her chest. They were doing this, giving the relationship a shot.

The twins grinned, and they each pressed a kiss to one of Hermione's cheeks. Then, they led Hermione into the kitchen, to spend time with their friends and show her off. Lee, Katie, and Angelina were all wonderful to Hermione. They were friendly, and the uneasy tension left the room. They made Hermione feel involved. The twins weren't overly touchy feely with Hermione, but she could feel their gaze on her throughout the night. For the first time in a while, Hermione felt a thrill of excitement at how good her future was finally looking.



Chapter Text

It was fast approaching Christmas, the time of year Hermione thought a lot about her parents. Every year until the Horcrux hunt, Hermione had gone home to spend Christmas with her parents. It was their favorite time of year. Usually, they spent their Christmas in another country. It was the time of year dentists could easily take time off, because not many people wanted their teeth done when they were busy saving for presents and celebrations.

Mrs. Weasley hadn't wasted any time preparing for Christmas; she'd sent out a letter to Hermione and Harry, inviting them round for Christmas day and telling them she wouldn't take no for an answer. Harry was quick to say yes, and Hermione agreed too. She was part of the family now, carrying a new generation of Weasley in her womb. Once the child was born, Hermione wanted the child to experience the love of the Weasleys, to have a big and loving family. Besides, she couldn't think of anywhere else to spend her holidays, except with the twins.

At nearly thirteen weeks pregnant there a slight curve to Hermione's stomach. It was small and only apparent because of how narrow her waist had been. She'd lost a lot of weight during her time with the curse, so the baby bump was more noticeable. It looked like Hermione was bloated rather than pregnant. Hermione could see, though, and she couldn't help reading and researching every stage of the pregnancy. The baby was a miracle; it had saved her life. Despite the terrible circumstances, Hermione was excited for her baby.

"Morning!" Harry smiled, holding out a hot cup of tea in a holder towards Hermione. She took the hot drink, wrapping her cold hands around it. They both made their way from the Ministry coffee shop, over to a seating area where they could drink and talk. It was a Thursday morning, and they'd both saved some time for a catch-up. Harry had been busy with work as well as Christmas shopping over the last two weeks, so Hermione hadn't seen much of him.

"When are you planning on proposing?" Hermione asked, then she took a sip of her drink. "You're not backing out, are you?"

Harry laughed, "No, I'm just trying to figure out the right time. I'm either doing it Christmas Day or New Year's Day. I was thinking of bringing in the new year by proposing to her. Start the year off with an engagement. Kind of a like a symbol for a life together."

Hermione raised her eyebrows, surprised and impressed. "That's a beautiful idea Harry, and I'm sure Ginny will appreciate the sentiment. I think you should do it on the New Year's if that's what you want. Have you asked Mr. Weasley?"

"Do I need to do that?" Harry asked. "I mean is it a wizarding tradition?"

"Purebloods do it according to the books, not that it'll matter to Ginny. I think it's the gesture more than anything else. We both know he'll say yes to you Harry, you're already part of the family."

Harry nodded, "I guess, I'll see how I feel and I might ask him at Christmas. I just don't want it getting out in case Gin catches wind of it before I propose." They both took a sip of their tea, and Harry looked towards Hermione with a smile. "When do I get to see a picture of my niece or nephew?"

"Tonight," Hermione replied. "After the twins close their shop, we're heading to the scan. I'm a little worried about it. The books talk about so much that could go wrong. I'll feel better when I see the baby and know everything's okay."

"Stop worrying," Harry encouraged. "I'm sure everything will be perfect. That baby has some good genes and three- Wait; it is three right? Or are you finding out the father?"

"No, it's the three of us raising the baby," Hermione replied. "We settled all that a while ago. DNA paternity testing wouldn't work on identical twins, and even if it was possible, the twins wouldn't want to know. They're excited to have a baby, it doesn't matter to them who technically fathered the child. I wished I been there to see Mrs. Weasley's face when the twins explained that to her."

Harry snorted a laugh, "I was there and trust me, it's not a conversation you're missing out on. She tried to convince the twins to propose to you when you woke up. She didn't want the baby being born out of wedlock. Like it's not the modern age, and things like that didn't happen now."

Hermione rolled her eyes, not the least bit surprised Mrs. Weasley had pushed the twins about marriage. Mrs. Weasley had dropped a few hints to Hermione over the last few weeks, but she hadn't gone as far as to come right out with it. Hermione knew she wanted them to marry, though, before the baby. "Everything with the twins is far too complicated even to think about that. I'm not being pushed into something I'm not ready for. I think I've had enough changes in my life to last me quite a while."

"We're growing up," Harry observed with a smile. He drank the rest of his tea and then patted Hermione's hand. "I've got to head to a meeting, but send me an owl and let me know how the scan went. I'll be expecting to see a photo next time we're together."

Hermione smiled and nodded, standing with her empty cup. Ever since the hospital, Harry had been more involved and attentive to Hermione. At times, he was a little overprotective, but Hermione knew it was all out of love. They were like brother and sister; they cared for each other. Harry had has been so worried when things had been looking rather grim for Hermione. Now, they had a fresh chance, and they were both determined to have an even better and closer relationship than before.

They parted ways and headed back to work. Hermione made it through a few meetings before giving into her cravings and headed to the shop to buy a few packets of salt and vinegar crisps. Hermione hadn't been so keen on them before the pregnancy, but now she couldn't stop eating them. Usually she was rather good with her calorie intake and the amount of sugar she had in her diet,but lately, she couldn't get enough of certain things. The baby seemed to drive her cravings into anything sugar filled. If her dentist parents could see her now, they'd be terribly upset. Especially after the years spent making sure Hermione had perfect teeth.

After a busy day of work, she headed home and changed into something more comfortable. Hermione put on some jeans and a loose-fitting top. The twins were going to shut the shop before the scan, so Hermione had tried to make the appointment late enough, so they weren't missing out on too much business. The twins hadn't been bothered about closing early, but Hermione knew how much they cared about work, so it made no difference to her. Hermione spent the rest of the evening reading, making a few notes on the baby books she was working through.

When the time came for the scan, she floo'd over to the twins flat. She was slightly early and called out as she dusted off her robes.

"Hello love," George called, walking into the living room, changed out of his working robes. "Fred's just finishing up, and then we're ready to go." He made his way over to her and planted a kiss on her forehead. "Excited?"

"More nervous," Hermione admitted. "I'm looking forward to seeing that everything is alright, it'll set my mind at rest."

Fred entered the room, catching the end of the conversation, "He's got strong genes, I'm sure everything will be perfect. Besides, with your brain and our passion for fun, he's going the cleverest troublemaker Hogwarts has ever seen."

"Excellent point Forge," George grinned. "Let's get going, want to go first?"

Hermione agreed and made her way over the floo. "Aren't you apparating?"

"No, it's a bit of a maze so we'd rather stick close to you," Fred admitted. "We ended up in the labor ward, back when you'd been admitted with your collapse. I've got memories I'll never be able to shake."

George grimaced at the memory, "Yeah, that's not an experience I'd like to repeat, so lead the way, Miss Granger!"

Hermione led the way to the maternity ward where they did most of the scanning and assessments for pregnancy. They took a seat, Hermione sitting between the twins as they waited for their turn. A few others were called as the three waited and the twins recognised a few people from their year group at hadn't been able to recall any of the names or faces, but they had been in different years.

"I can't believe how fast it's going," Fred admitted as they waited, his eyes going to Hermione's stomach.

"Tell me about it," Hermione smiled, "I'll need to go shopping soon. I'd rather not ruin the fabric of my favorite clothes with an enlargement spell."

George's gaze went to her stomach, and he raised his hand, hesitate to touch Hermione's stomach. Neither of the twins had seen the slight curve to her stomach. They hadn't spent much time together since deciding to give things a try. It wasn't because they were avoiding each other, but they had both been so busy with work.

"Hermione Granger?" A healer called from a doorway. Hermione stood, and George dropped his hand. The twins stood, and the three made their way into the office. The healer raised an eyebrow but didn't comment on the two fathers being present. Hermione was still surprised to see how easily the wizarding world took to the three of them. They were a lot more open-minded than the muggle world.

"I'll just go get your notes and medical history," the healer said as Hermione, and the twins made their way inside the office. "Get yourself ready and on the bed for me Hermione. Then, we'll come back and have a look at the baby. I'll need some blood and a bit of a background on dad, okay?"

The healer left to get the notes, and the twins took a seat on the chairs while Hermione climbed onto the table. She lifted her hips, wiggling her jeans down slightly and pulled her top up to reveal her stomach.

Hermione glanced over at the twins, noticing their gazes fixed on her stomach. She smiled at them and with a roll of her eyes said, "I'm not going to bite, you can come closer."

At the same time, the twins stood and made their way over to Hermione, standing either side of her.

"Makes it seem real now," Fred laughed, his hand going to stroke along the curve of her stomach.

George's hand joined his brother, "Seems kind of small for twins."

Hermione narrowed her eyes at George but noticed the smile on his face. She wasn't ready for two babies; she was just getting her head around having one. "Don't start with that, if there's more than one in there, you're both going to be in trouble."

"We're always in trouble," Fred pointed out.

The healer returned and set up the equipment for the scan. The twins stood back as the healer squirted some gel on and rolled a device over Hermione's stomach. "I read through your file, and I'm going to take some blood, just to make sure everything is okay. Have there been any problems? Any concerns regarding the dark magic or the scar?"

"No," Hermione said, raising her arm where the scar was. "No problems or side effects since leaving the hospital. I've felt tired and been sick, but that's more the pregnancy then the dark magic. Everything feels fine."

"And the sickness has passed or is it still going on?" the healer asked. She rolled the device over Hermione's stomach, searching for the baby on the screen.

"It's passed," Hermione confirmed, her eyes on the screen. They all watched for a moment, waiting as the healer looked for the baby. Then, after a moment a small shape appeared on the screen with a flickering in the middle. The baby, their tiny baby growing inside her. Hermione could see the heartbeat, the little flicker showing on the screen proving the baby was okay.

The healer was quiet as she took measurements, but after a moment she smiled. "Everything looks good; the baby is growing nicely, would you like to hear the heartbeat?"

Hermione nodded, unable to fight back the tears welling in her eyes. The healer flicked her wand, and then a quick beat filled the room. It was like a gallop of horse's hooves, so swift and strong.

"Merlin," George said, scrubbing a hand over his face. The twins placed a hand on each of Hermione's shoulders, the shock, and happiness written over their faces. "That's the best thing I've ever heard."

The healer spelled the device to hover over Hermione's stomach as she got to work getting some blood for testing. Afterward, she left to test the blood, leaving them alone with their baby on the screen and the sound of its heart filling the room.

"We've done well love," Fred said, pressing a kiss to the top of Hermione's head. "Perfect."

"Are you okay Hermione?" George asked, wiping a tear away from under her eye.

Hermione sniffled, "Yes, I'm just happy and a little emotional. All those months of pain have been worth it. For a while, I never thought I'd get to experience this."

"Me neither," George admitted. Hermione looked up in surprise, and George quickly explained, "I mean I didn't think I'd be a father, not that you wouldn't be fine. You've always been a fighter; I knew deep down you would never be ready to give up."

"You two were born to be fathers," Hermione disagreed. "I can imagine you both with an armful, just like your mother."

Fred moved his hand to stroke alone Hermione's stomach, just under where the device was to display their baby. "Now we are, but you've helped us more than you'll ever realise. My sleeping, George's confidence, it's been a year of change."

"Wonderful change," George agreed. The twins bent down, pressing a kiss to Hermione's cheek.

After getting a few pictures from the healer and giving a few details about their family histories, the three of them left St. Mungo's and headed to a small bar for a drink. Hermione wasn't ready to head back home just yet, and the twins felt like celebrating.

"Where are you spending Christmas?" Fred asked, picking up his drink. They'd found a quiet wizarding bar not too far from St. Mungos. It was a nice place, quiet and not too popular.

"The Burrow," Hermione replied, raising an eyebrow. "Like there was any choice, I think Molly would have come round and forced you boys to drag me over if I hadn't agreed. You'll both be there, won't you?"

"Yes," George said, then looked at his twin. "We usually have some family games the night before, have a good drink to celebrate family and such. We'll be spending the night there."

"I don't want to intrude, and I planned on just popping over at dinner time anyway. I can bring the presents over then."

"And wake up in a house all alone?" Fred asked, surprised. He placed an arm around her shoulders, pulling her close to his side. "He said it's a night to celebrate family, George and I have plenty to celebrate this year."

"Our girl," George smiled, tipping his glass in Hermione's direction.

"And our baby," Fred finished for him. "Your choice of course, but I know I'd rather wake up to your face then Ron's snoring mug."

Hermione chuckled, "I suppose I'll have to get used to these Weasley traditions, for next year."

"You're already family," George countered. "And even if you didn't feel that way before, what the three of us have going on makes you family. We don't just want you around because you're carrying our baby."

"We want to spend our Christmas Eve with you," Fred said.

"We want to wake up with you on Christmas morning," George agreed. "And perhaps, Freddie and I can whisk you off somewhere romantic Christmas eve before we have to spend two whole days with annoying family members."

"Somewhere romantic?" Hermione questioned, her stomach fluttering. This was what she wanted with the twins, to know they cared for her and not just their baby. She wanted to spend time with them, explore the feelings growing between the three of them. "How could I turn down an offer like that?"

"We're very romantic," Fred smirked and leaned in for a kiss to her lips.

"Spend Christmas with us Hermione, all of it," George asked, leaning into stealing a kiss of his own.

"Yes," Hermione agreed, a smile breaking out. She wanted to spend her holidays with the twins; she wanted to spend every holiday with the two of them.