"You don't have to leave."
His words stopped her in her tracks. Letting out an exasperated sigh, she turned back to face him.
"Remus. I didn't see you there," she said, letting her eyes land anywhere but on the man sitting across from her, her favorite quilt draped over her lap. His eyes narrowed at her, and she instantly knew he wasn't going to let her get away with her lie.
"Don't lie to me, Hermione," he said, his frustration and anger evident in his tone. He stood quickly and threw the quilt off himself, knocking over a few chess pieces as he did. Her eyes followed them as they fell to the floor with a muted knocking noise. Sirius would not be happy to see his favorite chess set treated in such a way.
"I'm not lying to you, Remus. I just remembered something I needed to do. I'm having a bad day and feeling very impatient right now so if you'll just excuse me…" she trailed off as she turned to leave the room once more.
A storm of emotions swirled up within her - guilt and sadness were only two, and she was helpless to do anything about it.
"Remus, I just can't right now. I had to go out into the Muggle world today for work and was mistaken for a prostitute and accosted. Twice. I wasn't even wearing anything provocative! To top it off, the sprinkler system malfunctioned, soaking me and everything in my office."
"Is that why you are barefoot? Where are your shoes?"
She pinched the bridge of her nose and repressed the need to scream loudly.
"No! You've been avoiding me all week, and you are going to tell me what's going on with you. Right now."
"Are you ordering me around, Remus Lupin?" she asked, furious that he would use their mate bond in such a way. She could already feel it, urging her to submit to him and tell him what he wanted to know. He had promised he would never do this.
"If I have to. I know I promised I would never use our bond in this way, but Hermione, I'm worried about you. You aren't sleeping or eating well. I've barely seen you all week. When was the last time you told me you loved me? You ignored me last time I said it to you. This isn't how married people are supposed to act."
In an instant, she felt tears start to well up in her eyes. She knew everything he said was true. She certainly hadn't been acting like a loving wife, but…
"I heard you with Sirius last week, talking after your weekly poker game. He asked you a question, do you remember what it was?"
She could see him thinking back to that last poker game and saw exactly when he remembered.
"Yes, oh. And I suppose you remember what your response to his question was, correct?"
"Hermione, please – l"
"Don't you 'Hermione' me, Remus! You know how much I want children. To hear you say you never wanted them, to call a child we could have together a half-breed, really hurt me. We agreed when we married that we would have children."
"I do want children with you, Hermione, I swear. I just… I get nervous sometimes. You face so much just being married to me. Imagine what our child would go through with me as their father."
"Any child would be lucky to have you as their father, Remus," she said as she placed his hand on her stomach. "I was coming to tell you when I heard you say that."
He looked at her in awe.
"You… you're… baby?"
"Yes, Remus. I'm pregnant."
"I… wow. That's wonderful!" he exclaimed as he picked her up and swung her around. "I'm sorry I said those things. I am really happy about this, please know that."
She felt something in her give way. It might have been the relief at finally telling him that she was pregnant, but whatever it was, most of her anger went with it.
"I love you, Remus."
"I love you too. I need some chocolate."
"Shouldn't that be my line?" she asked teasingly as she gave him a quick kiss on the lips.
She knew now that everything was going to be fine. They might have a few more bumps in the road from Remus' insecurity, but she knew they would get through it. After all, all they needed was each other.
Last Ship Standing: Pairing: Hermione/Remus
(3) object: chess piece
(4) object: quilt
(6) word: storm
(7) emotion: impatient
(8) dialogue: "You don't have to leave."
Bonus prompts: emotion: helpless
dialogue: "Where are your shoes?"
33. Today, I was mistaken for a prostitute. Twice. In my work uniform. FML.