Chapter two: Meeting

Two hours later, there was a knock on the door to #12. Harry had not had a visitor since he got there. He was apprehensive as he approached the door. He was surprised when he opened the door.

"Hermione!"

She rushed in and engulfed him in a bone-crushing hug. "Harry, I missed you so much!"

At first, Harry just stood there in shock that she was there. Then he hugged her back in desperation. He buried his face in her hair, savoring them familiar strawberry scent of her shampoo and the smell of parchment and ink that was Hermione. How he missed these hugs.

He leaned back to look at her. Her eyes were watery.

"Hey! Why the tears? I didn't mean to make you sad." He said as he gently wiped the tears from her face.

"These are happy tears, Harry. I'm so happy that we finally found each other."

"Let's go to the sitting room and get comfortable. There are things we still need to discuss." They had an arm around each other's waist as he led her to the sitting room just off the entry hall. She set her rucksack at the end of the couch. They sat on the couch facing the fireplace, even at this time of year there was a fire lit.

"Kreacher." He called.

"Yes, Master Harry. Hows can I help you?" the little elf asked.

"Would you mind getting us some tea please?"

"Of course master." Then he popped away and returned shortly with tea for two with biscuits.

"Thank you Kreacher." Hermione said.

"A pleasure Miss Grangy." He said and left.

"He looks good." She said.

"Yeah, ever since we talked to him about Regulus and showed him kindness he has changed. He seems to enjoy working here now. He even talks to me when we don't have anything else to do. I learned a lot about the Black family. He won't tell any secrets he has sworn to protect, but what he can tell is a lot of history."

"Harry as interesting as that is, and we will talk of it later, you said there were things we still needed to discuss. What's on you mind?" she asked looking up into his green eyes.

He sat and looked back into her warm brown eyes as if he was looking into her soul. "Mione, I know that in our letters, we said a lot of things, and I believe you meant them, I really do, but I feel the need to see your eyes when I tell you these things. I need to see for myself that you truly understand what you're getting into. I also need to apologize for some things and that can't be done in a letter."

"Harry there is nothing to apologize for."

"Yes there is, if only for my peace of mind. I need to do this Mione."

"What is it you feel you need to apologize for?"

"First, I want to apologize for not getting to know you better."

"Harry you know me better than my parents."

"I do now, but until we started writing anonymously, I didn't know your favorite color, your favorite book, (beside Hogwarts a History) your favorite movie or any of the little things that people normally know about each other."

"Well, you have to admit you had a lot on your mind Harry."

"That's no excuse. I had plenty of time for chess and cards. If I'm honest with myself, I was hiding. Years of trying to escape notice at the Dursleys were hard to shake, but after two years, I should have realized that they couldn't compare me to Dudley anymore. I could have done better and they wouldn't have known the difference. But I was comfortable with Ron and as long as I could get by, I didn't try."

"I think I understand. What else?"

"Third year, the broom incident, I immediately took Ron's side against you. It wasn't until later that I realized that you were just concerned about my safety, not that I had a new broom. Before we knew the truth about Sirius, I should have been more cautious. The broom was a symbol of freedom. Quidwitch was secondary to just being able to get in the air and fly. Nothing else mattered when I was up there." He said passionately with a faraway look in his eyes.

"Then there are all the times that you helped me with my homework. Making sure it was done and then making sure it was done correctly. I never thanked you for that."

"You didn't need to thank me. I was happy to help in any way I could. At least you did the work yourself, not like others I could mention."

"That is something else I need to apologize for, taking his side every time, not stopping him or at least reprimanding him when he was thoughtless and hurt you. I could see it in your eyes. I could have avoided so many fights if I had had the courage to tell him to just shut up." He said as he looked at the floor. "I failed you I so many little ways. I don't deserve you Mione."

"Harry, he was your first friend and best mate. You didn't want to loose him after just meeting him."

"That's no excuse either. How good a friend was he really. I have learned that friends are there for you regardless. They accept your friends and try to get along with them. Ron didn't. He almost left when he found out I was a Parselmouth, he left me when my name came out of the goblet, he made fun of you, he made fun of Luna, he was not happy to have Neville around until after Neville got his new wand. He may not have been Malfoy, but he was prejudice against non-humans and to a degree muggles. Strange that, as much as his father liked muggle devices, they still don't understand muggles."

"Sometimes I wonder how he made into Gryffindor. He abandoned us both on the Horcrux hunt because we hit a dry spell, and food became an issue. He hurt you so bad when he left; I wanted to kill him. "

"Do you remember the night we danced to the radio?" She nodded yes with a smile on her face. "When we were dancing and I held you in my arms, I…I wanted to kiss you so bad. I wanted to take your hurt away and make you mine, but…you were with Ron and I couldn't do that to you and him. What a mess."

"Harry, I was hoping that you would kiss me. I don't know why I felt like I did for Ron, but the longer he was gone the less it hurt to be away from him. Then, when he came back, the feelings returned, but they didn't feel right, not after spending time alone with you. I could tell that you cared, but I made myself believe it was in a brotherly way. Strange that I would try to love someone that had no interest in the same things that I did. How do you build as relationship when you argue all the time?"

"Why did you did you kiss him during the last battle?"

"That was a mistake. I went to kiss him on the cheek and he turned his head and wouldn't let go. Apparently you didn't see me slap him for that."

"No. When I saw you kiss him, I knew I had no chance and went to face my destiny."

"When Voldemort came to the school and Hagrid was carrying your lifeless body, I thought I was going to die. If Neville hadn't done what he did, I think we all would have given up. Then when you came into the Great Hall to finish Voldemort, I swear my heart stopped."

"A little dramatic, but I had to get to the school. If I had let him know, I was alive while still in the forest surrounded by his followers, I wouldn't have made it out alive. Sorry about that."

"Mione, how do you feel about my childhood?"

"I want to go Dursley hunting. I think I could come up with a few curses that might last long enough to make them suffer for all they put you through." She said with an evil grin.

"No Mione, I may never be able to forgive them for what they did but I want to forget it ever happened. I don't want you to be a criminal for something that will never happen again. They will get theirs in the end."

"What do you mean Harry?"

"We all have to face final judgment some day. That is when they will get their just reward."

Hermione couldn't help herself. She launched her self at Harry and kissed him. Harry was surprised at first. Here was the woman that he had denied himself kissing him. He slowly allowed himself to return the kiss. As he let himself feel her lips and the love that she put into the kiss, he felt he was in heaven. This is what a kiss should be. He thought. He had kissed Cho once, it was nice, but it didn't feel anything like this. Even the kiss with Ginny when he thought he had loved her, didn't feel like this. When oxygen became an issue and they had to break to breath, he said "WOW! Now that was a kiss."

He looked at Hermione and her eyes were glazed. "You can say that again. Where did you learn to kiss like that?"

"That was only my third kiss, Mione? You?"

"Second."

Harry raised his eyebrows "Really?"

"Yeah, I never really felt like kissing Ron even though he tried to insist."

Harry leaned in and captured her lips again softly, relishing in the feel of her, drawing her closer to him. Feeling her body mold to his as if it was meant to be there. Reluctantly, they move d apart slightly. He rested his forehead against hers as he let his heart rate slow and his breathing return to normal.

"Mione, we have one last issue to talk about. You know the press will have a field day if the see us as a couple. Can you handle it? You know what it was like during the tournament."

"Yes, Harry, I can handle it. Don't forget, I'm a hero too. Golden Trio and all that. The difference this time is that it will be true. Do you think that if we give Rita an exclusive, she would write what we want?"

"You mean like we did fifth year?" She nodded. He thought about it. "Yeah, I think it might work if she is the first to report it, it would be quite a feather in her cap."

"So were do we go from here?" She asked snuggled into his left side head resting on his chest listening to his heart.

"First things first, will you be my girl friend?"

She pulled hiss face to hers and kissed him passionately.

"I take that for a yes." She nodded.

He thought for a minute. "How long do you think it will take to find your parents?"

"Two weeks at the most. Why?"

"I think that we need to find them so I can get to know them and them me."

"Again Why?"

"Well don't you think your father should know the boy that intends to ask him for his daughter's hand in marriage?"

"Squeeeee" and she kissed him for all she was worth. "Do you mean it Harry?" she asked when she finally got her breath back.

"Of course I do. I finally realized that I have been in love with you since second year when you were petrified. That was the first time I was without you and it broke my heart. I just didn't understand why."

A/N: So ends this chapter. Next Australia. I was over whelmed with some of the reviews and hope that I continue to entertain you.