A little something that popped into my head. :)
I own nothing. It all belongs to JK Rowling.
Ronald Weasley sat at the bar of the Leaky Cauldron and sipped a glass of fire whiskey while he waited for his best friend. He'd spent the day in the field, fighting dark wizards with his fellow Aurors, and needed something a little stronger than his usual butterbeer. After the events of the day, dealing with a particularly nasty muggle hater, he was happy he was going to see her.
Ron and Hermione had a standing date every Wednesday night to have drinks and dinner at the Leaky. Though they shared one of the best kisses he'd ever had during the final battle, a relationship with Hermione never fully blossomed after the war. By the time she had finished at Hogwarts, it felt like their window had closed and neither brought it up again.
That did not, however, stop them from meeting once a week to talk about their lives and work and everything else that came up. Of course they also saw each other every Sunday at brunch at the Burrow, and Fridays for dinner at Harry and Ginny's; but Wednesday was just for the two of them.
Hermione had helped Ron after the war, standing by his side as he dealt with the loss of Fred, helping George reopen the joke shop, and keeping the Burrow running when it all became too much for Molly.
Ron also helped Hermione when she went to Australia to find her parents, helping to acquaint them with the real wizarding world (not the one that Hermione had to lie about and hide from them when the war was going on), and supporting her decision to return to Hogwarts and finish her education. The Grangers became so fond of Ron that they insisted he have dinner with them and Hermione at least once a month, but often times more.
While Harry would always be Ron's best mate, and now partner with the Aurors, Hermione was Ron's best friend. There was nothing that they could not share with the other. Time and distance helped their sometimes volatile relationship while growing up; they realized that they complimented each other in some of the best ways.
Ron had just ordered a glass of firewhiskey for Hermione when she plopped down on the stool next to him and let out a heavy sigh. Hannah Abbott, new owner of the bar and old Hogwarts classmate, had just set the drink down in front of her with a smile.
"Thank you, Hannah. You're an angel," Hermione said as she picked up her glass and took a long swig.
Ron smiled and said, "Tough day at the office?"
Hermione looked at him with wide eyes and replied, "Tough doesn't even BEGIN to cover it! I swear, sometimes I think I'm the only person in my office who knows how to open up a book and gather information."
"Well, you have the most experience... You did my and Harry's work for years. You're probably just the most efficient," he said with a smirk.
"Oh, hardy har! Yes, I suppose I can probably do it better than everyone else, but that doesn't mean I want to do it all." Hermione downed the rest of the firewhiskey and signaled to Hannah for another.
Ron raised an eyebrow and responded, "You should slow down there, champ. It is Wednesday night, you've got work in the morning."
"Honestly, after the day I've had, I might just skive off tomorrow. See how well they do without me," she said, taking a much smaller sip. After seeing the look of astonishment on Ron's face, she let out a loud laugh. Ron soon joined in and they sat at the bar, slightly annoying the people around them.
Ron recovered first and said, "Brillaint, I'll join you. I've had a pretty shite day at work as well. And tomorrow will likely be filled with paperwork, so I'll just leave that to Auror Potter."
Hermione frowned and said, "What happened to you at work today? Everything okay? No one was hurt, right?"
"No, no, no," Ron shook his head. "Just some crazy pure blood freak harassing muggles. Nothing we couldn't handle, I just hate dealing with those sort of cases. It makes me worry about you, and your parents, and other young muggle born children that don't know yet that they're a witch or wizard. It's why I do this job, to protect people, but it's still hard sometimes."
Hermione gave Ron a look in which he thought she was xraying him. He squirmed a bit under her scrutinizing eye before he turned to take a sip of his drink. She mimicked him and they fell into a companionable silence for a few moments.
Finally Hermione cleared her throat and broke the silence. "So, how are things going with... What was her name? Annie?"
"Amy. And they're not going anymore. She was very nice and pretty, but she was a right dullard. She never had anything of substance to say," he said with a slight frown.
Hermione had a small smirk on her lips as she replied, "That's a pity. She seemed nice... For a dullard."
Ron laughed, "Yeah, well... It happens. How about you? How are things with Leonard?"
"If you mean Lawrence, then they are also... Not going, as you said," she replied as she sipped her drink. "He was nice, but he just didn't make me laugh. He tried, I can say that much, but he just wasn't very funny."
"I mean, you have one of the funniest people ever as a best friend to compare him to. That hardly seems fair to any man."
Hermione chuckled and responded, "That must be it! I'm comparing every man to you and no one can come close!"
Ron shook his head, "We never even properly dated and I've ruined you for all men. What a shame."
"Oh really? Well how many girls have you broken it off with because they're not bright enough?" She smiled and continued, "I reckon I've ruined girls for you as well."
Ron lifted his glass and said, "Shall we be forever alone... Together."
"Cheers!" Hermione said with a giggle.
They both sipped their drinks as they sat and thought about what the other had said. Had they truly been comparing potential partners to the other? How many short lived relationships had been sabotaged by the mere thought of one another?
Ron spoke up first. "You know, now that I think about it, I have been comparing girls to you."
Hermione gave him a hard stare and replied, "Yes, I supposed I have too." She gave an awkward giggle as she finished her drink. Feeling the effects of her firewhiskey and an empty tummy, she boldly said, "Well, why didn't we ever give it a go?"
Ron thought about it for a moment and replied, "I suppose the timing was always a little weird and then it was too late. We were friend zoned."
Hermione smiled. "Never say friend zone again."
"I can't help it. It's where you live. When I visit you there I have to tell the Knight Bus driver your exact address... 123 Friend Road, Friend Zone, England."
Hermione laughed loudly and said, "Oh is Friend Zone in England? That's convenient. Glad it's not in Scotland or Spain or something."
"Well I wouldn't want you to be too far away," Ron replied with a laugh.
She shook her head and gave him a cheeky grin. "No, never. I wouldn't be able to stay away from you," she giggled.
"Can you just imagine us together? I'd be a mess, right?" Ron said as he sipped a new glass of firewhiskey.
Hermione nodded as she considered it. "Oh no, it would never work. We're best friends... Surely that would be awful, right?"
"For one, you would always be exhausted from all of the laughing at my jokes and wicked sense of humor... You'd never get any sleep!" Ron said as he nudged her in her ribs.
Hermione nearly spat out her drink, "Yes, that would be horrid! And you would be a right scare at work quoting some new theory on Auror stuff that I made you read... No one would want to come near you."
"Auror stuff? Is that what I do?" He said with a chuckle.
"Yes, very important Auror stuff," she nodded.
"Dangerous Auror stuff," he corrected.
She gave him a smile that could almost be described as seductive and said, "Not too dangerous, I hope. I wouldn't want to be kept home alone worrying about you."
"I'd never be able to leave you home alone very long, obviously. I wouldn't want you to stray, you see."
"As if any man would even look in my direction with my big, bad, Auror husband around!"
Ron laughed loudly and said, "Oh, are we married now?!"
Hermione giggled as she nodded her head, "Yes, obviously we're married. We're soul mates."
He smiled and said, "In that case, you wouldn't be home alone... You'll have our children at home to worry with you while I'm away on dangerous missions."
"We have children?" She whispered as as mile crept over her lips.
"Yep, two. A boy and a girl. And they both have crazy, curly, ginger hair. And they love quidditch," he smiled.
"Not when daddy is home," he poked at Hermione, "only mommy makes them read and study. Daddy is the fun parent."
It was Hermione's turn to laugh out loud. "Okay, 'fun parent'."
Ron smirked and nodded his head. While Hermione shook hers. They fell into a silence for a moment, thinking about this future that they had created.
"I think I know what we can do tomorrow," Ron said hesitantly.
"When we play hooky from work?"
"Yes... Let's get married." Ron said with a huge smile.
Hermione stared at him with wide eyes and a smile as she waited for him to burst into laughter. When he didn't immediately, her face turned to one of concern. "Ron, are you mad?!"
He laughed at her reaction, but continued, "I'm not mad! I'm a genius! You're right, Hermione, we're soul mates! Best friends! I love you and I don't want to grow old with some stranger who will never be as incredible as you. I want you!"
She could hardly believe what she was hearing. "But... We've only ever shared ONE kiss! How do we know if we're compatible?! How do we know if we can live together? Or if a relationship would last?!" Her ever present logic taking over.
He gave her the smile that she knew he reserved for only her and said, "Because we're Ron and Hermione... We've always been meant to be."
She shook her head and began, "But-"
She was cut off mid sentence as Ron weaved a hand into her hair and pulled her in to a passionate kiss. All thought melted out of her head and her entire world was filled with Ron and only Ron.
Only once the wolf whistles started and Hannah loudly cleared her throat, did they break apart. With a giant smile on her face, Hannah said, "Can I get the two of you some floo powder?"
With a laugh, Ron replied, "Yes, that would be great, Hannah. Thank you."
Hermione still looked as though she'd been hit over the head by a bludger. She simply nodded her head in Hannah's direction.
Ron took her hand and looked deep into her eyes. "Hermione, I'm being serious. Nothing has ever made more sense to me in my entire life. Marry me," he said with a sheepish grin.
She hesitated for a fraction of a second before smiling and saying, "Okay."