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Chapter 31- making plans.
AN: Please read and review, you guys are the best.

Back at home it was odd for Hermione to think that she was never going back to Hogwarts, not as a student at least. She spent most of her time trying to warm her parents up to the idea of Draco being a more permanent part of her life. Draco came over often. At first it was a bit awkward for Draco, since he had never spent much time around muggles or muggle items. He was a bit overwhelmed in the beginning. Everything Hermione’s parents did he did not understand. Her father watched soccer on the television; her mother used the microwave or toaster. 

The very first dinner that the four of them shared together didn’t go as Hermione had planned. She had spent an hour lecturing Draco on the dangers of her parents and the tricky questions they might ask. She warned him to be careful around the topic of their past, since her parents had her complain about his treatment of her before. She was worried what they would think of his past and his family, but Draco seemed relatively calm about it all. He was nervous on the inside, but for Hermione’s sake he held it together and reassured her that his irresistible charm would win her parents over. She still worried. 

Before Draco arrived Hermione gave her parents a lecture about being nice to him. 

“He’s really important to me and I hope you’ll be nice to him, I would never forgive you if you scared him off.”

“If he is so important to you then why did you never tell us about him before, why did you leave him out of every letter all year?” Her mother had been having a hard time since she found out that her daughter had not felt the need to confide in her about her first boyfriend. Hermione thought perhaps she felt like she had missed out on an important mother-daughter bonding experience. And perhaps she had, but she was just going to have to accept that Hermione had kept him from her. 

“Mom, it was complicated, I promise we will explain at dinner, just give him a chance. It’s not like he kept the relationship from you, I did.” Her mother could not argue with that, she agreed to be civil.

When Draco arrived, he and Hermione’s dad had a ‘friendly conversation’ while Hermione and her mother set the table and brought out the food. Once they were all seated the dinner formally began. Hermione felt it was time for explanations. 

“Ok, well, I really want you both to get to know Draco for himself, because he means a lot to me” as she said that she smiled over at Draco who smiled back at her. “But I feel like in order for that to happen you need to know the whole story behind how we came to be together, and it is quite a tale.” A look of sadness came across Draco’s eyes as he remembered what they had been through. “But I really need you two to promise to try to be understanding. It’s a hard story to tell and it was certainly a hard time to go through. I’m sure you won’t like what all I’ve kept you from, but I had my reasons.” Her parents looked worried at that.

“You two gave me that amazing book for becoming Head Girl, Diagnose Your Own Magical Maladies and I love it. But at the beginning of the year I was exhibiting some odd symptoms. So I decided to make use of my new book and look it up. I thought it would be cool to go to Madame Pomphrey and tell her what I had and just have her fix it, rather than ask her what was wrong with me. When I plugged in my symptoms a few potential diseases came up. The one that seemed most likely was an incurable magical disease that slowly kills the witche’s magic and eventually the witch herself. Since there is no cure for it I figured that it wouldn’t make any sense to change my life. I wanted to continue like nothing was wrong, not that Ron or Harry paid me much attention, so I didn’t have any friends to tell. I didn’t want to worry you two. So I just made my bucket list of things to do and went on with my life. We had a masked ball at school where I met this great guy. He turned out to be Draco. I didn’t want to tell him who I was, so I just ran away. We spent some time exchanging letters with him not knowing who I was. Then we started hanging out. We used our disguises from before, so no one knew who we were. We got close. Then Draco discovered that I was sick and made the connection between my two identities. We became close friends in real life and he helped me with my bucket list. Finally he discovered that I had misdiagnosed myself and I really had a disease that won’t go away on its own, but it is entirely curable. So we went to Madame Pomphrey and she cured me in a few seconds. But we stayed close. Eventually we became more than friends. Harry and Ron and Ginny came around and rejoined my friend group, and two of Draco’s friends joined us too. We all became really close and here we are today.” 

Her parents just sat across the table from her, absorbing all that she had said. Finally her father spoke. 

“And you kept this from us? You didn’t think we would want to spend your last months with you? You didn’t even come home for Christmas!” Her mother nodded in agreement.

“I couldn’t bear to tell you. I love you both so much. I couldn’t think about leaving you, and if I went home for Christmas I would have felt obliged to tell you. And if I told you it would have changed our whole dynamic of how we wrote to each other and how that last Christmas would have been. Instead I enjoyed a fun, disease-talk free Christmas with Draco at school.” Her parents didn’t look like they really understood. Her mother was crying a bit. Hermione stood up. She walked around to her mother and hugged her tightly. 

“If it had really gotten towards the end I would have come home. I would have spent my time with you, I swear. But by the time I would have told you I already had been cured.” Her mother hugged her back. 

“Please give Draco a chance. He has been my rock through this all. He supported me, helped me, and in the end, found me my cure. He is a really great guy and I want you to get to know him.” Her parents nodded and the dinner returned to some form of normal. They made it through the dinner and Draco left. Hermione knew she had to tell her parents about the engagement in order for them to better understand the importance of their growing relationship with Draco. She decided on telling them the next day, since that evening had been so overly eventful.

That next morning she and her parents ate lunch as a family. 

“Mom, dad, I know I put you through a lot yesterday, but there is something else I have to tell you, just so we have to secrets and so you guys can understand Draco better.”

Her parents nodded and motioned for her to continue.

“Toward the end of the year, Draco and I had been through so much, and our relationship had grown so strong and so deep because of all we had done together. He was my only friend for most of the year. He was my everything and I was his. So he asked me to marry him.” Her parents gasped. “And I said yes.” They didn’t look happy. “I know we are young, but in the wizarding world they marry much younger, since we are already legal adults and there is no wizard college. We are both going out into the world to find jobs and create new lives. We don’t want to do that separately. Besides, we have spent the past year living only a hallway away from one another, I can’t imagine not living with him. Please understand. I love him and he loves me. No one else could be this perfect for me. He’s the one and I would really appreciate it if you would support my decision.” Her parents hadn’t even blinked, they were so shocked. “His mother really wants to meet up with you, mom, to start planning the wedding. Draco’s family is very wealthy, so I expect they will want an extravagant wedding and will probably offer to pay for it.” Her mom smiled briefly at the idea of planning her daughter’s wedding, and then the idea of it all struck her and her shocked look returned. 

Slowly her parents mulled over what she had said. Her mother was the first to speak. 

“I can’t say I like the idea of you marrying so young, but if you really love him, and it’s normal for the wizarding world, then I guess I have no reason to object to it, so long as you allow me to have a say in when you get married. I don’t want you to get married too soon. A long engagement is never a bad thing.” Her mother came up to her and hugged her. “I just can’t believe that my little girl is so grown up and getting married.” A few tears escaped her mother’s eyes as she pressed a kiss to her forehead. Hermione returned the hug with all her strength, glad that her mother understood. Her father wouldn’t look at her. She walked over to him.

“Are you ok?” He looked up at her, his eyes looked sad. “What’s wrong, do you hate the idea of me getting married that much?” He shook his head.

“It’s not that, I’m just going to miss having you around. I am so proud of you and everything you have done. I can’t believe how grown up you are. You are no longer a girl, you are a beautiful young woman and now I have to give you away.” Hermione cried a bit, touched by what her dad had said.

“It’s not like I’m never going to see you again, I will visit all the time and I promise not to get a job and flat too far away. It will be like I never left. You will see me more often than when I was away at school.” Thinking of it that way seemed to help. They spent the rest of the day doing things as a family. 

Over the next few days her parents got to know Draco a bit better. He came over every day and spent time just doing various activities with her family. They seemed to really get along. Draco fully explained his past and everything about him, there were to be no secrets. Her parents seemed to be relatively understanding and they accepted that he had since changed and that he was not his father. 

Soon it was time for Mrs. Malfoy and Mrs. Granger to get together to start planning the wedding. It was decided that it would be best if they met at Malfoy manner, seeing as Mrs. Malfoy is more uncomfortable around muggles than Mrs. Granger is uncomfortable around wizards. 

Hermione and her mother stood outside the gates to the Malfoy manor. Hermione had some bad memories from the struggle to defeat Voldemort that were tied to this house. She knew she had to overcome them. She sent her patronus to get Draco to let them in. Within a few moments out walked Draco. He opened the gate and ushered them in.

“I’m so glad you could make it Mrs. Granger.” Draco smiled at her as he offered her his arm to walk up to the house. She accepted it. 

“Thank you, I am very excited to meet your mother again, she seemed like a very nice woman.” 

“Well, she awaits you in the parlor. If you need anything just tell her and a house-elf will get it for you, food or drink or anything else.” As he said this Draco opened a door to their left and held it open for them. Hermione gave him a peck on the lips as she walked by. 

When Hermione entered the room she smiled. Mrs. Malfoy had picked the least intimidating room in the house and it seemed like she had put an effort into making it seem inviting. The drapes were open, allowing sunlight to pour into the room, lightening it up. There was a tray with tea and small sandwiches on the coffee table in between the two couches that were situated in the center of the room. The room looked relatively muggle, with the exception of a few strange gadgets around the room and a quartet of instruments that were playing themselves. 

Hermione’s mother looked around her appreciatively, her eyes fixating on the instruments. 

“This is amazing, you have a lovely home Mrs. Malfoy.” Mrs. Malfoy smiled, it was a little forced, but Hermione had to accept that it would take a little getting used to. 

“Please, our children are getting married, call me Narsissa.” Mrs. Granger smiled in return.

“Then you must call Jean.” Hermione and her mother sat on the couch across from where Mrs. Malfoy sat. There was a brief moment when Hermione thought Mrs. Malfoy was going to have a problem with a muggle and a mudblood sitting on her furniture, but the moment passed and Mrs. Malfoy forced a smile onto her face. Catching Hermione’s eye Mrs. Malfoy looked apologetic and made a motion with her head, saying that she was working on it. Hermione nodded, indicating she understood.

“Jean it is. And how are you Hermione? Lovely to meet you again.” Hermione smiled at her. 

“I’m well, thanks. It’s good to see you too. How have you been?”

“Good, good. Thank you for allowing me to participate in this planning process. I bought a few wedding magazines, I hope that it ok.” 

“That’s great,” Hermione said, “I brought a few muggle wedding magazines as well. Together we should be able to plan a pretty amazing wedding. Do you know a way to make it magical but have that hidden to muggles, because my grandparents will be coming, I hope.” 

“I’m sure we can figure out a spell for that, no need to worry.” 

They spent the next several hours poring over magazines, outlining plans, looking at pictures, talking about who to invite, designing table arrangements, and other such wedding necessities. 

They took a brief break to eat lunch and Hermione went to find Draco. 

“Hey you.” She said when she found him. He turned around and smiled at her, kissing her on the forehead.

“Thanks for doing this, my mother really appreciates it, she was excited all day yesterday about getting to do this today. She always wished she had a daughter so she could plan her wedding with her.” Hermione smiled at that.

“Speaking of you not planning the wedding, do you have any requests? Anything you really care about when it comes to the wedding?” Draco thought about it for a minute. 

“Well, I want you to be the bride, me the groom, I want to pick my groomsmen, I want our tuxes to be black and silver, with green if you can work it in to the color scheme, if not that’s ok. Other than that, I would really like chocolate to be in the cake somehow.” 

“I think I can manage those. Anything else?” Draco embraced her.  

“Nope, I’m happy to just be marrying you; the wedding isn’t the most important part.” He kissed her lips before letting her go. “You should get back there, check on our mothers.” Hermione nodded her agreement, kissed him once more, and went back to the parlor.

The wedding planning went well. There was a slight icy tension at first, not that Hermione’s mother noticed, but it soon passed. Surprisingly enough, the two women got on splendidly. They were soon chatting away, forgetting Hermione was even there. It was clear that Mrs. Malfoy didn’t get to talk to other women very often, she seemed glad for the company, even if it was a muggle woman. 

Eventually Hermione and her mother went home. They promised to return soon to further the planning, but Mrs. Malfoy insisted that she come to them next time, wanting to meet Mr. Granger again and thought they could alternate. Hermione smiled at Mrs. Malfoy gratefully, she really was making an effort. They agreed and promised to send her a letter with a day that would be good for them. 

When they got home Hermione’s dad was sitting in the living room.

“So, how did it go dear?” Mrs. Granger sat next to her husband on the couch, Hermione sat on the floor in front of them. 

“It was lovely. Draco’s mother is a very sweet person. She was ever so nice and we got a lot of planning done.” Mr. Granger looked to his daughter for confirmation.

“It’s true. I was pleasantly surprised, they got along really well.” He nodded and draped his arm around his wife’s shoulders. 

Everything went wonderfully. They alternated where they met, meeting often enough. They had decided that August 13th sounded like a good wedding date. That gave them almost two months to plan the wedding, which in the wizarding world was plenty of time. Her mother was not particularly happy that her request of a ‘long engagement’ had turned into two months, but she saw the love between Hermione and Draco, so she couldn’t really object. 

They didn’t need to reserve a location or caterer, since the wedding was to be held at the manor, as per Malfoy family tradition, and the house elves were going to make everything. but they did need get entertainment, invite guests, make other plans, decide on a menu, etc. Hermione and Draco had a few things to figure out themselves. 

And so the plans began.

AN: Thanks for being such great readers, it’s because of you all that I got inspired to get this next chapter out. Love you all. Please leave a review. I think there will be one more chapter and then perhaps an epilogue.

FOR ALL CREATIVE READERS: If you have any IDEAS you would like to see in the MAGICAL WEDDING, please leave your idea in a REVIEW, I will try to INCORPORATE as many as possible! Thanks so much!

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