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    “After this amazing plan, Harry,” Ginny said the next day, as she tied a green ribbon around a oddly shaped package covered in brown paper, “We should fight crime!”

                “I do fight crime, Ginny,” Harry reminded her, as he wrote a small note on a little card, “I’m an Auror.”

                The “amazing plan” consisted of leaving the teapot package outside Harry and Ginny’s front door (addressed to Ron) and the teacup package outside Hermione’s door (addressed to Hermione). They believed this to be genius, as they suspected that Ron would believe his present was from Hermione and vice-versa. Unfortunately, Ron and Hermione were people who both had their fair share of intelligence (Hermione actually had quite a few people’s shares) which meant that possibly, just possibly, they might figure out this was all just a big plan to get them back together again. But Harry and Ginny were enjoying themselves, and for the moment, that’s all they cared about. Harry held his little card in front of himself and Ginny, and admired his handiwork:

     

                Dear Ronald Weasley,

                            This teapot is especially for you. I hope you enjoy it.

                            You have to guess who this is from. Tee Hee Hee.

     

                “Very sneaky Harry!” Ginny complimented him with a chuckle, “But I’d knock off the “tee hee hee”; Hermione would never say that.”

                Harry removed the offending “tee hee hee” and that won Ginny’s approval. Harry didn’t have to work hard to win Ginny’s approval; she really quite loved him. They soon began to laugh together at the pure brilliance of their plan, whilst secretly stowing away the teapot package in a place where Ron would never find it: behind the bananas.

                And they continued to laugh, basking in each other’s cleverness until Ron came down the stairs to see what all the hilarity was about. Harry and Ginny’s laughter doubled when they saw him, and they couldn’t think of an excuse to give him to explain their laughter… even if they did have one, they wouldn’t have been able to talk. So Ron, having no idea what they were laughing about, joined in, even though he had no idea what was so funny, and had no idea that the centre of the joke was himself. But laughter’s infectious like that, even if it comes at your expense.

                “Haha!” said Ron.

                “PAHAHAHHA!” said Harry.

                “Heehee!” said Ginny.

                They continued in this vein for a while, until Ron eventually wiped a tear from his cheek and asked again: “What were you laughing about?”

                “Harry sat on a pin at work today,” Ginny said immediately, still giving sparse little laughs in the aftermaths of the hilarity, “You know me… my childish sense of humour and all that.”

                This was news to Harry, but he tried to wince at Ron, just to show that it may have been possible that he did sit on a pin. His strange lopsided grimace seemed to convince Ron, who then asked Harry if the pin was still in there. Harry told him that it wasn’t. Ron seemed disappointed.

               

    **

     

    The sun rose the next day, beautifully yellow and bright. It shone through the curtains in a very pleasant way, illuminating a happily sleeping couple, and also a half of a couple who was spending his third night in the wrong bed: it was Ron. However, he seemed quite happy too, even though he believed he was going to get a divorce any day now.

                This red haired man stretched his arms above his head as the sun woke him; usually Ron was an angry fellow in the morning, but not today! He felt curiously upbeat, ready to face the world. To celebrate this wondrous occasion, he decided to take the day off work.

                Ten minutes later, Harry found Ron fully dressed downstairs, drinking – yes – a cup of tea. Yes, he was drinking a cup of tea.

                “Morning Ron,” Harry said, feeling incredibly happy that Ron was actually drinking tea, “You’re drinking tea! You’re drinking it.”

                “What?” Ron laughed as he took a sip, “No, this is coffee!”

                Harry wasn’t really surprised; he should’ve known it was too good to be true.

                “I made you one, and Ginny,” Ron said, sliding a mug towards Harry.

                “Ginny’s gone to work,” Harry said, taking his mug and thinking in reality as to where Ginny had actually gone: to deliver the teacup to Hermione. She’d had to do it very early in order to catch Hermione before she woke up; Hermione was one of those indecently early risers who nobody really understands, apart from those of similar ilk. Ginny had then gone straight to work, due to some issue involving broomsticks and trolls flying them or something like that.

                “Blimey,” said Ron, “The only person I know who gets up this early to get to work is - ”

                He broke off, a mutinous look coming over his face… that was somehow ruined by the fact that his eyes were soppy with adoration. It was a strange juxtaposition, but one that Harry had seen many times… because he saw it every time Ron and Hermione fell out, and “hated each other.”

                “Anyway!” Harry said briskly, “I should get dressed!”

                “Yeah you should,” Ron agreed, laughing, “I don’t remember people ever being allowed to arrive at work without a top on before.”

                “What?” asked Harry, confused, “I am wearing a top!”

                “No you’re not…” Ron said, “Look…”

                Harry looked down, and saw that it was true. Then the memory of how he had lost it came back to him. Unfortunately, the pleasant memory was interrupted by the fact that Ron had woken up to go to the loo in the middle of it, meaning that all endeavours had to cease until it was certain that Ron was asleep again, by which time Ginny had fallen asleep. This was the final straw: Ron and Hermione had to get back together, and stay there.

                “I’m surprised you weren’t cold last night,” Ron said fervently, “I was. I had to get out of bed to put a pair of socks on.”

                “Were they maroon by any chance?” Harry had to ask.

                “All my bloody socks are maroon!” Ron implored, looking quite annoyed, “Apart from a violet pair I had… but I gave them away – anyway, you know my all socks are maroon you Flobberworm!”

                Harry did know that; Ron’s socks had started to appear in the washing cycle in his house. In short, he stayed here too much.

                It wasn’t at all like Harry didn’t like spending time with Ron. He was his best friend, and he had more fun with Ron than he did with anyone else, not to mention he trusted him beyond belief and had a great time teasing Hermione with him, but… enough’s enough. He was married, and actually so was Ron, so Harry saw absolutely no logic in the fact that they were practically living together. The only way he would accept Ron moving in with him was if he and Hermione seriously actually really properly split up. And to be honest, Harry knew that would never happen. Because the only person who could tolerate the other one, was the one that they were married to. It sounds confusing, but it’s not really.

                “May I have a banana?” Ron asked nicely, after his outburst about his socks.

                “Yeah, sure,” said Harry, yawning and making to leave the kitchen so he could get dressed in his red Auror robes; they didn’t half clash with his eyes. That’s what Ginny said anyway, “But I thought you didn’t like bananas?”

                “Only because of that time George bought that book about Muggle tricks, and I slipped up on one when I was about three… down stairs and everything,” Ron explained, “But the enmity is gone now; I think they taste nice. Hermione put me up to it... says they’re good for me.”

                Harry could just see Hermione bullying Ron into eating a banana, yelling, “THEY’RE GOOD FOR YOU RON! GOOD FOR YOU!”

                “Wait!” Harry said loudly, just remembering why Ron couldn’t eat bananas… but Ron had spotted it.

                “Hey!” Ron said, delving around behind the bananas, which were hanging on a little hook, “There’s a parcel here…”

                “It’s not for you,” Harry said hastily, “See look… it has – ” he took the parcel from Ron, and squinted at the label on it, “ – it has Roonil Wazlib on it…”

                Harry groaned inwardly as he remembered the quill he had used: "SELF -SPELLING SELF - INSULTING - TWO USELESS PROPERTIES YOU WANT FROM QUILL FOR THE PRICE OF ONE!"… he cursed himself. Why did he continue to buy quills from George? The new label now read:

               

                Dear Roonil Wazlib,

                This tebwet is not  especially for you. I hope it kills you.

                            You won’t be able to guess who this is from; you are stupid.

     

                “What the hell…?” Ron said slowly, as he peered at it, “Roonil? Tebwet?”

                “Well I have no idea who it’s from,” Harry said, shoving the parcel at Ron, “But it’s for you. It’s obviously from someone who has been in our kitchen before. Who could it be?”

                Harry hurriedly left the room, before he wrecked the plan even more, leaving Ron to his thoughts as he ripped the paper off.

     

    **

     

    “Ginny!” Hermione said happily, as she walked up to Ginny’s desk in the Ministry later that day, “You’ll never guess what’s happened!”

                “I probably won’t, no,” Ginny said, smiling vacantly up at Hermione, “Spill.”

                “Ron left me a present outside our house today!” she said, “He obviously wants to say sorry for going on at me reading too much!”

                “That’s what you fell out about?” Ginny asked, shocked, “Because you read too much?”

                Only Ron and Hermione could design an argument about reading. It was ridiculous. And Hermione was supposed to be clever… you could go as far as to call her mature -          

                “I know,” Hermione said, shaking her head and laughing in a disbelieving manner “As if anyone could read too much!”

                Ginny looked down, avoiding Hermione’s eye. Hermione then perched on the edge of Ginny’s desk.

                “He got me a gorgeous teacup!” she said, her eyes clouding over as she went into the section of her brain that was only reserved for Ron; the mushier side, in other words, “It’s powder blue with a little white rim, made in such fragile china…”

                “It sounds lovely!” Ginny said, smiling at Hermione, trying not to giggle; she had remembered entering “Tessie’s Teacups” with a slightly nauseated expression (Umbridge’s office anyone? Doilies everywhere) but had secretly had quite a nice time looking at all the different types. Some would bite your nose, some would tell you when their contents was at a suitable drinking temperature, and some would spill tea at random intervals, preferably to be used on unpleasant guests who deserved such a fate. For example, people who insulted your net curtains.

                 

                Ginny had other teacup charms in mind though… Hermione would find it out soon enough. As would Ronald, when he used his teapot. Oh the glories of manipulation!

                “I’m going to christen it when I get home!” said Hermione, sliding off Ginny’s desk and standing in front of it, “I’ll have to tell Ron that I want him home!”

                And it was with a very cheerful heart that Ginny watched Hermione bounce away.

     

    **

     

    “This bloody teapot doesn’t work!” Ron complained to his little sister that evening, “I have boiled tea, I have put it in the pot, and when I try to pour it out – it – it doesn’t!”

                “Ridiculous!” said Ginny, sat at the table reading the Daily Prophet and trying to prevent amusement from entering her voice, “How funny!”

                “Look – ” said Ron, tilting the teapot over a mug patterned with owls, “It doesn’t pour!”

                He continued to tilt it, even holding it above his own head, but for some reason… the tea would not exit it. It was as though the spout had been blocked.

                “I think teapots on their own look strange,” Ginny mused, engrossed in her paper, “I reckon they look better in a set.”

                “Yeah… I’ve seen Muggles with them,” Ron agreed, now holding the spout above his eye, “Tea sets I think they’re called.”

                “Wizards have them too Ron,” Ginny reminded him, “It’s not just Muggles.”

                “It’s a nice teapot though…” Ron said to himself quietly, turning it in his hands, and examining the bottom, “I like that colour blue…Not that I ever buy teapots or anything.”

                “Sure you don’t,” Ginny said lightly, admiring how the light blue shade of the teapot reminded her of the spring sky… the dainty white rim really looking quite pretty. Oh the romance of the teapot. The mind boggles, it really does…

                “I just wish I could use it!” Ron said, frustrated, now tipping the whole thing above his head, drenching him in hot tea.

                “ARGGHHH OW - IT’S HOT - MY EYE!”

                Ginny had only jinxed the spout. Not the lid.

                Ron now looked like an old painting. He was a bit brown.

     

    **

     

    “Here’s the report you wanted,” Harry handed a thick document to Hermione, prior to their Disapparation home, “Egbert told me it should everything you want to know… about the breach of the Statute of Secrecy and all that fascinating stuff.”  

                “That’s great Harry,” Hermione said, taking it, “That’s a great help, thanks. Mr Bagnold should be very happy with this.”

                “No problem,” Harry said, “You’re worth the effort I went through to get it.”

                Hermione gave him a little “aw shucks” punch on the arm, and then slipped the file inside her robes.

                “Do you want to come in for a cup of tea?” she asked him, her eyes suddenly alight, “I have a new teacup you see, and I want to use it! It’s from Ron.”

                She smiled proudly. Harry smiled back, unable to stop himself. This was exactly what he and Ginny had wanted them to think. Thus, the plan was going well… if you ignore the quill blunder, which had potentially insulted Ron, as the note on his parcel had said it wanted to kill him. But, even the best of plans (which this was) had their flaws, so it was natural that flaws should arise. It was about working around these flaws, and coming up with feasible solutions…

                “Yeah, sure!” Harry agreed.

                He and Hermione then both span on the spot, and after the initial near suffocation, they both arrived in a cramped cottage kitchen, with a little blue teacup set in the middle of the table.

                “Tea?” Hermione offered, pointing her wand over her shoulder towards a cupboard, so that a little sugar dish, teabags and a spare mug for Harry hopped out. Milk clattered from the fridge in its glass bottle, and the kettle on the hob steamed into life. Sometimes little pleasing bits of magic like this still amazed Harry, even though he’d seen and encountered far bigger feats of magic, it was the little things like this that he liked most.

                “Did you hear that Veronica Plumpton has written a new book?” Hermione asked Harry brightly from over her shoulder, as she spooned sugar and put teabags into a teapot.

                “Erm… no?” Harry said, as he sat at the table, and looking at Hermione questioningly; since when did he ever keep up with the releases of new books? There was no point, he had Hermione to do it for him.         

                Even though Hermione’s back was to him, Harry could tell she’d rolled her eyes.

                “It’s about Quidditch!” Hermione said, pouring hot water into the rather plain white teapot, and then stirring it with her wand, “I thought you liked Quidditch!”

                “I do like Quidditch!” Harry retorted, “It’s the love of my life!”

                Hermione narrowed her eyes at him, stirring her teapot menacingly.

                “After you of course!” he said hastily, “Ron? No…?”

                “Your wife Harry!” Hermione snapped, abandoning her stirring so she could whack him round the head, “Your wife is the love of your life.”

                “Yes,” agreed Harry, “Definitely. But I don’t like reading about Quidditch. I like playing it! Or watching it.”

                 “You’ve read that stupid Flying with the Cannons book even more times that Ron!” Hermione scolded him, “Neither of you ever read!”

                “You’ve just said what we read!” Harry said back, “You’ve just proved yourself that we read! We just don’t read as clever books that you do.”

                Hermione rolled her eyes, but didn’t comment, and then started pouring a stream of goldeny brown tea into a mug with a paw print (Crookshanks had made it himself). Harry gave his thanks, and then Hermione started to brace herself: it was time… to use her new teacup.

                She tilted the pot, and the tea streamed out, but then something curious happened.

                “It’s – it’s disappearing!” Hermione said, retracted the spout and looking into the depths of her cup, shocked.

                Harry was vividly reminded of a Dumbledore gasping for water, and Harry could not give him any. For any water he magicked into the goblet promptly vanished… unless he plunged it into the lake –

                “That’s strange,” Harry said, also peering into it, “Very funny.”

                Hermione continued to try and pour tea into this stubborn little cup, but her efforts were in vain. The cup was simply not accepting the tea. And nothing Hermione did could make him change his mind.

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