You are viewing a story from

The Man Who Couldn't Dance by hopelessNirvana

Format: One-shot
Chapters: 1
Word Count: 2,485

Rating: 12+
Warnings: No Warnings

Genres: Drama, Romance
Characters: Ron, Hermione
Pairings: Ron/Hermione

First Published: 03/18/2007
Last Chapter: 04/23/2007
Last Updated: 04/23/2007

banner by stranger_than_fiction
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
It was a twist of estranged fate that Ron Weasley appeared in the little, unknown town of St. John on the evening of March 17th, precisely the day that, years before changed his life. It was even more peculiar that he and his wife, Lavender Brown, appeared on the doorstep of Mr. and Mrs. Hermione Potter…or maybe it was just the way things worked. Not destiny—but pure physical power.

Chapter 1: The Man Who Couldn't Dance
  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

It was a twist of estranged fate that Ron Weasley appeared in the little, unknown town of St. John on the evening of March 17th, precisely the day that, years before changed his life. It was even more peculiar that he and his wife, Lavender Brown, appeared on the doorstep of Mr. and Mrs. Hermione Potter…or maybe it was just the way things worked. Not destiny—but pure physical power.

“Can I…see her, then?” He smelled of cinnamon, similar to the smell of the Burrow, but faded. His eyes fell down, instead of springing up, like they had in his years of youth. His hair still had that Weasley color, but it had darkened over the period of time in between youth and adulthood.

Hermione kept her uncontrollable hair tied into a bun so that her girlish, wild hair would not distract the common eye from thinking she was younger. She had a quaint smile on her face, as if everything had turned out all right. Maybe not the way she dreamed, but not the way she didn’t.

Ron Weasley and Harry Potter had just made an amazing discovery—their friendship. They sat on the Hogwarts Express in such a joyful manner that they could only be eleven year olds. They had just had their first dose of Malfoy, which was not pleasant. As they hurriedly ate their sweets and tarts in turmoil of excitement for the upcoming events, the sliding door opened with a bang.

What did Ron Weasley think of the girl before them? Well, definitely not much. Her nose stuck up in the air in a way that caused him to raise his eyebrows in comical disbelief. Her hair stuck out on all ends and she seemed like a prat, anyways. She was nothing, and would never be anything to him at all.

The sink ran for a minute, so that the water could clear out the dirt from under the faucet. Hermione pretended to stare at it, as if she were somehow dumbfounded by it even though she had used such an item since she was a small child. She didn’t know how to answer him. Of course, they had been best friends at Hogwarts, so why shouldn’t he go see her child? Once the rush of water ran a steady fall of clean water, she turned the faucet off and leaned against the counter for support.

She then caught eye contact with him. “Well, yes, of course. I mean—it’s upstairs.” She stood up properly and tried to smile. Harry and Lavender were in the next room sharing small talk, while Ron and Hermione shared this awkward moment.

Ron heaved a sigh. “You call your own child an ‘it’?” He looked away and frowned. Hermione bit her lip for saying the wrong thing and inwardly cursed at herself.

“Well, no. I-I meant she.” It was probably the first time that he caused Hermione Granger to lose her words. They stood there for another awkward moment. Ron ruffled his hair, just liked he always did. He heaved another sigh.

Much against popular belief, Ron did not first notice that Hermione existed as a young woman at the Yule Ball. Once he had gotten to know her years before, he had always seen some sort of internal beauty that she never had any confidence to show physically.

And just because she was a girl didn’t mean that he was in love with her. Or so he denied comfortably to himself. And maybe he couldn’t help but tug at his collar and bite at his lower lip, watching her express that beauty to someone…else.


“Er—yeah.” Hermione rubbed the back of her neck with her sweaty palms and caught eye contact with him again.

“Are you going to show me your daughter or not?” He asked. His eyes sorrowfully looked into hers with deep curiosity. She couldn’t refuse him. His life had been filled enough with pain.

She nodded and beckoned him. “Follow me, then.” She slowly led him out of the kitchen and up the stairs across the hallway. They walked up the carpeted stairs and over the fourth one that creaked a little, and then over the sixth one that sounded like the starting pitch for “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.” Finally, Hermione reached the last step. Before continuing into the room, she reminded Ron to stay as quiet as possible, as she was sleeping.

They stepped into the old room with a lot of dust and shelves and old books. In the midst of it all, sat a tiny carriage. Ron walked quickly over, in anxiety of seeing the girl’s face. In doing so, he resulted in creaking an old floorboard very loudly.

“Shh!” She reminded. He waved her off and finally stood over Harry and Hermione’s daughter. She was afraid to approach him. What would his response be? She stayed put until he turned around…but he didn’t. So she walked over to him and put her long, thin, young but aging fingers on his tensed shoulders. It caused him to shudder a little. She put her other hand on his other shoulder, and out of pure humanity, began massaging them with care. After ages of silence, she decided to speak.

She began softly. “So, what do you think?” She continued to massage his tense shoulders. He shook a little, and she wasn’t really expecting a response. But, he finally answered.

“I think she’s quite unattractive,” he put bluntly. Hermione quickly removed her loving hands and crossed them across her chest.

She sniffed. “Right, that’s kind of you,” she whispered through gritted teeth. “And please, be quiet.”

He turned suddenly. “Well, those eyes—”

“They’re my eyes!” Hermione almost shrieked. Why was he doing this? “Don’t be an insufferable prat right now. Please, for both of our sakes.”

He laughed angrily. “Oh, yes, Hermione, and you’ve always known what was best for us!” He muttered something indecipherable to himself and messed up his hair.

“What was that?” She stepped closer to his side. He didn’t dare look at her this time. He shook his head. “Ronald! I’ve never, ever known anything that didn’t come out of a book.”

He laughed. “That’s for sure.” He casually walked to the opposite side and opened a few books that Hermione had stored away for her daughter.

She continued putting some stray hairs behind her ears and looking away. “I’ve never known—but, I’ve felt. And when it comes to feelings, the only thing a human being can do is try and hope that it comes out for the best. Then, if it didn’t, at least I gave my best.” Ron smiled at the book he was looking at. It was my seventh year Ancient Runes textbook. He strode over quickly with a page open.

“Look.” He said. She glanced at it and looked away.

“Yeah, so? Ancient Runes, big deal. You never cared about that anyways,” Hermione pointed out.

“No, no. Really look.” She did. “That’s Hermione right there. Trying her best, and trying again. She regretted and even brown-nosed her way into getting what she wanted.” He pointed to Hermione’s neat little notes in the margin. He sighed and looked up at her wearily. “I don’t ever remember her saying ‘Oh, well’.”

Hermione was silent. “Yeah?”

Ron nodded. “Yeah.” Another awkward silence.

“I think we should go back downstairs,” she said quietly.

Ron didn’t respond. He just walked over to the baby carriage again, as if he had no intention of leaving. He put his hand inside to touch the baby’s round, protecting stomach. Hermione walked over quickly and touched his arm.

“Shh,” she reminded him. “It takes forever to put her back in bed.” He took his arm out and stepped back a little. He nodded.

“Listen, ah…I didn’t mean it when I said that your daughter is ugly…I just meant—” He paused.

Hermione stepped toward him. “Y-yeah?”

“That the eyes are beautiful. I mean, honestly, I don’t think I’ve ever laid mine on another’s so beautiful.” He sighed.

“They’re my eyes,” Hermione said with hesitation.

He nervously tittered. “Yeah. They just don’t—mix with the shape of the mouth. Oh, and the color of the hair. The eyes clash with the black…”

Hermione backed off, a little unsure of what he was saying. Ron continued to stroke the baby’s cheek. “H-how do you mean?”

Ron’s ears reddened. “You want me to tell you?” He asked quietly. Then he stormed to the other side of the room, staring at a bookshelf. “She’s not supposed to look like that,” he finally coughed out. He messed his hair up again and faced Hermione. Tears filled his eyes. “She’s supposed to have brown eyes, big red hair, and a quirky little nose.” He shook his head, shaking tears off at the same time. “A-and this? This—” He gestured to the baby. “—Is perfection.” Through salty tears, came a smile. His hands trembled uncontrollably. Hermione, seeing this, rushed to his side. She grabbed his hands and wrapped them around her back. She wrapped her own around his neck and shushed him.

“Ron, your time will come and you will have your own children! I guarantee,” Hermione looked into his eyes. “You and Lavender will have such beautiful children—” Her eyes began to blur over and water started to blind her. Ron became a red blur. Then, she felt them being wiped away by strong hands.

“I have always loved you, Hermione. Not Lavender.” Hermione could barely see him anymore. Her world became a blur again. She had always known this, but kept it privately to herself. But Mrs. Hermione Potter did not expect this now—especially now that they were both married and she had a baby. He wiped her blur away again and she stared at him clearly. His were blotching red, and she could feel her own stinging eyes as well.

Sniffling, she attempted to speak. “We can’t do this now, Ronald,” she whispered and stepped back.

Hermione wandered over to a window. Outside, the fog lay under the sky, protecting the sky from being seen. She wasn’t sure what Ron was doing at the moment, and didn’t seem to care. His silence resonated throughout the whole room. She opened the old, dusty window and a million little specks flew out. The wind stung her red eyes, but it was almost a healing pain—a distasteful medicine. City lights shined without a care in the world. She almost wished she could grab a broom and fly over them…No marriage, no baby, no Lavender…no Ron—to just fly. She had always thought flying on brooms were distasteful and cliché, but at this moment she felt more powerful than she had ever felt.

She had tuned out Ron so much, that she hadn’t realized that Ron was…humming? She turned back around and felt less blotchy. She looked into his face and realized that he seemed healed as well. Maybe not completely, but for now he was.

She closed her eyes and listened to the soft song for a minute. It sounded extremely familiar. “W-what is that?” Hermione asked, keeping them closed.

Ron laughed. This time it wasn’t an awkward or angry laugh. It was a friendly laugh. “You don’t remember?” She could sense his footsteps nearing her.


Her body felt warmer as he approached her. “It was the song they played at the Yule Ball in fourth year. I watched you dancing with Viktor Krum all night, and, oh, how I wished to be him.” His breath was now audible from a few feet away.

Hermione opened her eyes to view him. “Why didn’t you just ask me instead of acting like a prat all night long?” They made eye contact. The light shone on his eyelashes, making them seem lighter than his hair color.

“H-Hermione, there’s something that I’ve never told you,” he began with a sigh looking away.

“What is it?” Hermione whispered “You can tell me. We still are best friends.” She felt she needed to remind him.

“I…I…” He turned red. “…I…can’t dance.”

Hermione stepped back and gave him an incredulous expression. “Ron, please, don’t be foolish—”

“No, Hermione!” Ron’s face looked like a tomato, he was so embarrassed. “I let you down. If I had danced with you at the Yule Ball, everything would be different, wouldn’t it?”

Hermione was speechless. “Th-that was ten years ago!” She hissed.

“So? You always wanted me to dance with you. And I couldn’t. At the Yule Ball, the Graduation Ball…or whenever a song played you would look at me. Don’t deny it,” he said forcefully. Hermione remained silent. “I just wish I could have.”

Hermione smiled. “Oh, but Ron, you have danced with me. Remember?” She walked over to him and touched his freckled cheek.

He shrugged it off. “No, I don’t. I-I don’t recall that.”
Hermione placed her other hand on his other cheek and felt the warmth flow into her own body. “Don’t be silly. We danced…at…my wedding.” She blushed furiously and turned away. Ron stared at her in wonder.

“But, Hermione, that wasn’t a dance…it was a meander of sorts,” he protested. “A slow walk.”

“It counted for me.” Hermione laughed genuinely, but Ron looked away.

“…And I remember thinking how strange it was to be holding you in my arms at your wedding. You were the bride, of course, but I wasn’t the groom…” He trailed off, walking towards the carriage once again. She followed him, taking his arm. They looked down at Hermione’s daughter for a minute. She finally spoke, after stroking her daughter’s hair.

“It was strange, wasn’t it?” A thick silence followed. “Even though, we never…”

“Right.” Ron rubbed his neck uneasily. “I wonder what Lavender and Harry are doing.” He looked at Hermione.

“What do you think they are doing?” Hermione chuckled.

“Nothing much,” He laughed in agreement.

Hermione was unsure of what to say next. “Where do we go from here?”

Without words or hesitation, Ron took Hermione in his arms. In the back of their heads, they could softly hear the clarinet and the flute playing their song. They did not let go for a few minutes. They barely moved their feet. Ron pulled her hair out of the tight bun, revealing long curls flowing down her back. She gasped in slight surprise, but held tighter onto his broad shoulders. They could have remained like that for years….and years…



Two voices became audible at the bottom of the stairs. Quickly, they separated and stared at each other in the darkness.

“We, er, should probably get down there,” Hermione advised. She turned around and headed for the stairs. But before she stepped down, his arm grabbed hers. She glanced at him.

“What is it?” she asked curiously.

“Your daughter is beautiful.”

Hermione tied her curls back into a tight bun, so Lavender and Harry would not suspect anything. “Be careful on the way down. The fourth step from the bottom creaks,” was all her useless mouth could manage.