Hermione woke up to something banging unbearably loudly. She groaned and turned to her other side, trying to regain the peace that had surrounded her moments earlier. Unfortunately, the loud banging noise refused to go away.
Finally, reluctantly, she threw her bed covers on the floor and dragged herself towards the creator of such an unpleasant sound. As she walked down the hallway of her small apartment, she was able to see that it was currently 1:56 A.M.
Her heart started beating faster. There was no way good news awaited her at such an early time of the day. Her mother had always warned her that nothing good ever happened after 2:00 A.M. Her mind started piling up with possible outcomes that could've happened to her friends. In the midst of a war, one could only expect bad news.
As she opened the door, she was surprised to see her boyfriend standing mere feet away from her. Excitement filled every cell of her body as she enthusiastically wrapped her arms around him.
"I expected you to be in Whitehall by now! What are you doing here?"
Oliver pulled away from her and shared a sincere smile with her.
"I decided that no position in the Ministry of Magic would ever be more valuable than having you by my side! I- I know that we're in the middle of a prolonged war. And I know that it might go on for many more years.
But it's been almost three years since you saved my life in the Battle of Hogwarts. It's been three years of falling more and more in love with you. And I've finally decided that we have no certainty of living much longer. Anything could happen, and I could lose you in a blink of an eye. So I've decided that I want us to live in the moment."
Hermione stared wide-eyed at him as he kneeled in front of her, in the middle of the empty hallway.
He took out a small, velvety box and opened it to reveal a beautiful diamond ring. There was a small snitch engraved in the interior of one of the diamond crystals.
"Hermione Granger, I want you to be my wife. I want you to spend the rest of your life with me, regardless of how long that might be."
Hermione felt tears forming in her eyes as she felt him slide the ring into her finger. He stood up and wrapped her into a tight hug.
She placed her face on top of his shoulder, giving her the perfect view to the clock on the wall:
Maybe good things could happen after 2:00 A.M.
"You're marrying him?! You do realize that we're in the middle of a war right?", said Ginny the next morning as they shopped at her favorite shoe store.
"Says the one dragging me around a shopping center. Ginny, it's been three years since this war started. Look at all this people walking around like everything's normal. We've all gotten used to this, and I don't want to waste anymore of time worrying about a war that might never end. I've put a stop to my life for so long, and I need to finally do something for myself."
Ginny continued browsing for a pair of black leather heels in her size.
"Do you think you have these ones in a size 6?" She asked one of the retail sellers standing nearby. As the young attendant walked towards the storage room, Ginny shifted her attention back to Hermione.
"Mione, the problem is not that you're marrying him during such a crisis. The problem is that this crisis might be the reason you're marrying him."
Hermione stared blankly at her redheaded friend. She would be lying if she denied thinking the exact same thing earlier that day. Hermione had gotten used to Oliver's presence, she had gotten used to having him by her side through all those painful moments.
The war had forced her to grow up faster than expected. She had gone from being a normal teenager to having to erase any trace of her existence from her parents' memories.
Oliver had been there to hold her at night when she had nightmares. Oliver had been the one who had controlled her every time she broke down thinking about her parents. Oliver was the one who drove her all night when she broke off her engagement with Ron.
Oliver had been the one repairing every broken piece of her life. Yet, she didn't feel butterflies with just a single stare into his eyes. She didn't feel her heart beat faster every time he kissed her or caressed her face.
Most of all, there were nights when she didn't feel safe lying in his arms.
That night she found herself sitting outside the Burrow, pulling grass out of the ground as she nervously tried to ignore Ron's curious glance.
"I shouldn't have come here. I- I don't know what I expected by coming here. I'm sorry."
As she made an attempt to get up, he stopped her.
"I know that you're getting married. You came here for a reason. You came here because you want me to stop you."
As she heard the words come out of his mouth, she realized that it had been such an idiotic idea to go looking for him. It had been pointless to leave such an important decision to someone who was no longer part of her life.
"I didn't come here for your approval. Don't mistake it. I came here because after you broke me apart, after our engagement was over, I never expected to fall in love again. I never expected to have someone, again."
She looked at the shredded grass in her hands.
"I want you to tell me that he's not like you. Tell me that he won't break me apart. Tell me that there won't come a day when he'll wake up and realize that he made a mistake by choosing me."
By now, tears were running down her eyes. She couldn't hold her composure anymore.
She could remember that awful afternoon when Ron had yelled at her, breaking her completely apart. He had blamed her for losing movement in his right arm. She could remember the way his face had matched the color of his bright, red hair.
"You promised me that you would heal me! You promised me that everything would be alright! How am I supposed to help Harry when I can't even hold a bloody wand? You're a shitty girlfriend and you're a shitty healer!"
She had stared at him wide-eyed, waiting for him to stop yelling. Waiting for his words to stop hurting.
"Ron! I tried everything I could! There was nothing I could do to save your arm! I'm so sorry."
"I'll never forgive you for this! Thanks to you, I'll be a freak for the rest of my life."
The next few hours were a blur to her. She could remember him telling her that he didn't love her anymore. She could remember throwing the ring in his face. She could remember begging him to stop when he had started packing his bags. Most of all, she could remember the last look of pity he gave her before walking out the door.
Ron stared at her and wrapped his left arm around her shoulders.
"I'm sure you'll make an outstanding wife. Wood will not make the same mistakes I did. He won't take you for granted."
Hermione gave him a small smile. Despite the fact that almost three years had gone by, she still felt the need to have his reassurance. She felt the need to know first-hand that she wasn't going to get hurt again.
They had tried time after time to reestablish the close friendship that they had once , but it had become impossible to pretend that nothing had ever happened between them.
Hermione felt that Ron would always blame her for his disability, even if he denied it now.
"Thanks. I appreciate this."
She gave him one last smile before getting up. As she stretched out her leg, she mentioned:
"Tell your mother that I'll come back for dinner some other day."
She made her way to her car. She had decided to drive to the Burrow instead of simply apperating because she had known that driving would take her mind off things.
She turned around to face Ron.
"If you feel so insecure about this decision, maybe it's because deep down you know it's not the correct one."
The next few weeks happened in the blink of an eye. Soon, Hermione found herself returning from her honeymoon.
The truth had finally sunk in. She had made the wrong decision, and it was too late to change her mind.
Her mom had always been right.
Nothing good ever happens after 2:00 A.M.
Author's Note: The next few chapters will be like this one, set months before Ginny's wedding to Blaise. There will be little Dramione interaction in the next few chapters, but remember that this IS a Dramione fanfic. I'm just trying to set the mood of the story before jumping right it. There will be a lot of Ginny/Harry in the upcoming chapters.