Beta(s): gaeilgerua and dragoon811
(Highlight to View) Warning(s): Explicit Language.
(Highlight to View) Prompt: Hermione and Severus have been secretly seeing each other for over a year. The reactions of their friends and colleagues to their elopement are widely varied.
Note: Big cheer to my betas for supporting me through this entire process, and motivating me when I desperately needed it! I hope everyone enjoys this fluffy bit of SSHG! xx
Summary: Shame the Prophet can't get their facts right.
Placing his cutlery at the proper angle on his delicate china plate, Lucius looked up at his son. The Malfoy family was gathered for breakfast on the back patio as they did every Sunday morning. He arched a brow at the flushed expression on his son's face. "Draco? Something interesting in the paper?"
"I'll say," Draco murmured, handing their copy of the Prophet to his father. "I had no idea Uncle Severus was seeing anyone." While Severus was his godfather, he practically helped raise him. Severus was family.
"He isn't," Lucius murmured, ruffling the pages as he turned back to the first one. "Dear Merlin." His eyes went wide as he took in the picture of Severus with none other than the Granger girl… Potter close behind them. "He's gone off and eloped!"
"What?" Narcissa asked, nearly dropping her tea cup. "Severus has?"
Lucius nodded, quickly scanning the article. He snorted at a few parts, realising at once that Skeeter had written the tripe. "Apparently, he married the Granger girl so the Wizarding World wouldn't know that she was pregnant with Potter's love child."
Narcissa pursed her lips. "That's absolute rubbish."
"Everyone knows how madly in love Potter is with his wife," Draco said, a sneer twisting his aristocratic features. "She's constantly at the Auror office visiting him."
"Of course that part isn't true, but it definitely does appear that Severus has gotten married. I just never thought him the type." Lucius stared at the picture. He handed the paper to Narcissa, who was craning to see.
"There's a hint of a smile on his face," Narcissa said almost immediately, looking rather fondly at the image. "I hope that he's happy. We'll have to invite the new Mrs. Snape over for tea."
Lucius nodded in agreement. "I, for one, have many questions that I plan on asking Severus over a glass of bourbon. We'll send over an owl in a few days."
"Harry James Potter!"
Harry groaned at his wife's shrieking and snuggled deeper under the covers. "Give me another min, Gin," he grumbled.
"Absolutely not," she said loudly. The sheets disappeared with a wave of her wand. "Explain this, right now!"
He sat up, yawning as he saw his wife waving around the Prophet. "Oh."
"Yes, oh! Please, explain to me what you're doing at Gretna Green with Hermione and Snape!" Ginny put her hands on her waist, truly looking like her mother as she waited for his response.
"They got married, and I was their witness," Harry replied with a shrug. He took the paper and looked it over. "I look awful in this picture."
"That's what you care about?" Ginny asked in disbelief. "I just can't believe you didn't tell me! I thought we told each other everything, Harry."
"Hermione asked me not to tell anyone, and I respected her privacy. Besides, you know Snape is a private man. I doubt he wanted me blabbing about their relationship to other people." Harry shook his head. "You know this isn't true, right?" He held up the paper and pointed to the pertinent line.
Ginny cracked a smile, shaking her head. "Of course I know that's rubbish." She took a seat next to him on the bed. "Sorry I yelled. I suppose I was just a little upset there was this big secret that no one told me about."
She kissed Harry briefly.
"I was shocked," Harry replied honestly. "It was a bit awkward, too. Hermione invited me to her flat, and he was there. She explained to me that they had been secretly seeing each other for over a year and that they wanted to elope. I was surprised because Snape loved my mother, you know?"
Ginny nodded in agreement.
Harry grinned. "And besides, it's not my love child she's carrying. It's Snape's."
There was a tapping at the window, causing Ron to grumble as he buried his face beneath the sheets. "One more minute, Mum," he groaned, before realising that he no longer lived at the Burrow and that it wasn't his mother at the door. He pulled himself from the bed, looking around to figure out the source of the knocking.
"Oh." He realised that it was the owl delivering his copy of the Daily Prophet. He opened the window and took the paper from the bird's leg. Paying the bird and feeding him a treat, he ruffled the pages as he went to sit down. "What the fuck!" he cried out in surprise.
There, on the front page, was a picture of Hermione, followed closely by Snape, who was in turn, followed by Harry. The trio was spotted at Gretna Green!
Angrily, Ron read the article quickly. He knew right away that some of the information wasn't true… especially the part about Hermione being pregnant with Harry's baby. But what about the rest of it? Did she truly marry Snape? Was this a power play for the Ministry? He rolled his eyes at that comment. "This has Skeeter written all over it," Ron grumbled angrily.
He tossed down the paper and began to pace in his room. "How could Hermione not tell me?" he asked aloud. "I'm her best friend for Merlin's sake!" He did his best not to simmer on the sting of jealousy he felt. "She told Harry, but she couldn't tell me? Why the bloody hell not?"
Making up his mind to get some answers, he pulled on some trousers and stormed towards his fireplace. Grabbing a fistful of Floo powder, he was about to throw it into the fireplace when he stopped himself. Taking a deep breath, he tried to calm down.
As angry and upset as he was, storming into Harry and Ginny's was not the right thing to do. He very much doubted his sister would appreciate the early morning wake-up call.
Ron put the Floo powder back, falling into a heap onto his sofa. "Hermione must have a good reason for not telling me," he murmured aloud. He nodded after some consideration. She must have had a reason, and he vowed to himself that he would let her explain. He wouldn't jump to any more conclusions.
But Snape? As much as it weirded him out, Ron supposed that Snape wasn't actually that bad of a match for Hermione. They both liked books, and they both taught at Hogwarts…
Ron sighed. He was sure there were more similarities than he could currently think of. Maybe they took their tea the same way?
Relax, he told himself. She'll explain it when she's ready. I just have to be patient and supportive.
Knowing there wasn't much else he could do, Ron let out a tired yawn before falling back asleep right there on his sofa.
Luna sat, stirring cream into her tea as she gazed out into the back gardens of the gazebo Rolf had built her shortly after their marriage. She smiled as she heard her husband coming up the stairs. "Tea, love?"
Rolf appeared, shaking his head. He was carrying a copy of the Prophet in his hands. "Luna, have you read this rubbish?"
"No." She frowned as she took the paper from him and quickly read it. She arched a brow at the line stating that Harry was cheating on Ginny with Hermione. As she continued to read, she scoffed at the section that discussed how the wizarding world would ‘never be the same due to this torrid love triangle.'
"Harry doesn't seem like the type to do such a thing," Rolf commented, agreeing with his wife. "This article is crap."
Luna smiled at Rolf. "The Daily Prophet has never been known for its accuracy. It's always oversensationalised news… I should show you some of the articles written by this woman during my third year at Hogwarts, when Harry was in the Triwizard Tournament. I've always suspected the Wrackspurts have gotten to her." She fixed Rolf a cup of tea and handed it to him. "I'll contact Hermione about doing a proper interview once she returns to Hogwarts with the Professor. I'm sure they'd both be happy to set the facts straight."
"Good idea," Rolf said with a nod. "But do you think the Professor will share? It seems that he's a very private person."
"He is," Luna agreed. "But I think the fact that Hermione's reputation is at stake, according to the Daily Prophet, will spur him to counter it. And I don't think he'll want anyone to doubt just whose child Hermione's carrying."
Rolf spurted his tea. "What? How could you possibly know that Hermione's truly pregnant? Did she tell you?" He couldn't recall Hermione ever letting it slip around him.
Luna smirked, that familiar dreamy look in her eyes that reminded Rolf just why he fell in love with her. "I just know," she said airily.
Minerva arched a brow at the worried tone in Filius's voice. "Yes?"
"Have you seen this?" He thrust the paper at her. "What will the students say?" The Charms professor fidgeted nervously in his seat as he gazed out onto the few students in the Great Hall this early for breakfast.
Minerva quickly read the article that Filius was referring to, shaking her head as she did so. She had suspicions that Severus and Hermione were closer than the two had let on, but she had never suspected that they were this close. Marriage? Between two of her professors?
"What a scandal," Septima whispered, leaning towards Aurora. "I wonder if there will be an investigation."
"Of course not," Minerva hissed angrily. "Severus and Hermione are both consenting adults. If they wish to be married, then I am happy for them both. Merlin knows they both deserve it. The one thing I will not tolerate is this: I will not have my staff spreading rumours." She narrowed her eyes at Vector and Septima. "That means you two. Keep a lid on it, understood?"
Both witches nodded, not daring to speak.
Minerva sighed. She should have seen this coming when they both requested a leave of absence the same weekend. But she had never…
"Look at him," Filius whispered, pointing towards the picture. "I haven't seen him look that content in years."
Minerva glanced at the moving photograph carefully. She took in his posture and the slight tug upwards on the corner of his lips. "He looks happy." He wasn't outright smiling, but she could see it in his eyes.
And Hermione? She was a vision of pure happiness. The smile on her face was so large, so innocent, that Minerva couldn't help but smile back at the photograph. The two were an intellectual match, and they both shared similar interests, so she shouldn't really be all that surprised by this revelation.
Minerva passed the paper down to Hagrid, who was straining to look at the article being discussed. Congratulations were in order when the Professors Snape returned, as well as a stern talking to.
Hermione opened her eyes to the sound of pages being turned. Rolling over, she smiled when she saw Severus sitting in a chair near the fire. "What are you doing up so early?" she asked, her voice slightly rough from sleep.
Severus glanced at her, a soft smile curving his lips. "Just wanted to see the Prophet first thing."
"And did we make the first page?" Hermione inquired, a teasing tone to her voice. She was more than certain they had. How could they not? No one besides Harry even knew they had been seeing each other the past year, or that she was pregnant.
"Of course," Severus said with a roll of his eyes. "Potter's been thrown under the bus. No doubt he's been bombarded with owls."
"I'm sure we'll have plenty to read when we return to Hogwarts," Hermione murmured. She certainly did not look forward to sorting through all that mail.
"I can always just burn it," Severus replied. "Or perhaps you can… I do recall you have quite the penchant for setting things aflame." The amusement in his voice gave him away.
Hermione flushed. "Yes, well, I already told you that I had a good reason for setting you on fire." She propped herself up.
He snorted. "You did that last night, too, if I recall properly."
She laughed, then looked at him lovingly. When she spoke again, her voice was low and seductive. "Husband."
"Yes, wife?" Severus raised a brow, closing the Prophet and placing it on the table.
"Come back to bed. It's our honeymoon. Let's enjoy the peace and quiet while we still can." She smiled at him, silently thanking Merlin that Severus had thought to find an Unplottable cabin in Germany for them to rent for the weekend. They wouldn't be disturbed, and they would be free to engage in pure, romantic bliss.
Severus stalked towards her, slipping off his robe and joining her beneath the covers. He pulled Hermione closer to him. Their bodies pressed together, quickly warming them.
"I love you, Severus," Hermione murmured happily, pressing her face into his side. She pressed a kiss to the bare skin there, causing Severus to squirm. A ticklish spot I didn't know about, she mused, storing the information for later.
"And I love you, Hermione," Severus replied, tightening his grip on her. He gazed down at her, millions of thoughts running through his mind. A part of him still couldn't believe that he had spontaneously married the woman he loved. Hermione made him happy, and although he knew there would likely be hell to pay — especially with Minerva — he didn't regret his decision. He loved her and would continue to do so no matter the odds. Pushing the Prophet article from his mind, he focused instead on the task of pleasing his new wife — something that he would continue to do for the rest of their lives.