A Marriage Most Convenient

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Chapter 38: Almost the End, but not Quite Yet (AKA The Chapter Where Hermione Goes…AHHHH!!!)


"One half of the world cannot understand the pleasures *(& the sufferings) of the other." – Jane Austen.


I will never know what my wife suffers. For example, she suffered greatly growing up Muggle-born, she suffered greatly being best friends of a git with a scar on his head, she suffered greatly from being married to me, and now, she’s suffering greatly to give birth to our child. All I can say is, OUCH!” – Draco Malfoy.


AHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! I want an epidural and I don’t care if this is a magical hospital, either you take away my pain or I take away my husbands bollocks!” – Hermione Granger.


Again, I say, ‘OUCH’! Get her the damn medicine!” – Draco Malfoy


*added by the author

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“What’s taking so long?” Lucius asked his wife. “I don’t recall things taking so long when you gave birth to Draco.”


“How would you know, you didn’t show up until after he was born,” she spat.


He glared at her and turned his head in the other direction. Alice skipped into the waiting room along with Ron Weasley and James Potter and asked, “Where’s Daddy now?”


“He’s in with your mother, for some ungodly reason,” her grandfather Malfoy stated.


“Do you want a peppermint stick, Grandfather?” the little girl asked.


“Do I look like I want a peppermint stick?” he snapped back.


“Listen, Malfoy,” Harry barked, “I know we’re all on edge, because it’s been fourteen bloody hours, and I know you’re worried, but don’t take it out on Alice!”


“Why are you even here?” Lucius asked Harry Potter.


“Because she’s my best friend,” he said, standing.


“I meant in general, as in, why are you alive,” Lucius drawled.


“Listen, gentlemen,” Hermione’s mother began, “I want everyone to be quiet. Harry, be respectful to your elders. Lucius, take the damn peppermint stick, Alice, you and James go with Grandpa Bob and he’ll take you for another walk.”


Lucius raised his eyebrows, huffed and said, “Now we know where Hermione got her bossiness.”


Alice walked up to her grandfather Malfoy, started to hand him a new peppermint stick from a brown paper bag that was in her chubby little hand, but then decided that since he yelled at her, he didn’t deserve a new one, so she handed him the one that had been partly in her mouth. Narcissa couldn’t help but to laugh, along with Harry.


Lucius looked disgusted at the sticky sweet in his hand, though he said, “Thank you, Alice.”


She giggled, because everyone began to laugh, (she wasn’t quite sure why they were laughing) but still she laughed along with them. She said, “Your hand will be as sticky as mine now, Grandfather. Daddy hates that. Do you?”

“Not at all!” he practically shouted. “There’s nothing I love more than sticky hands!” He stuck the end of the peppermint in his mouth and pulled out his wand to clean his hand.


His sarcasm was lost on Alice, who turned, took James’ hand in one of hers (he didn’t mind sticky hands) and followed Bob out of the small, private waiting room.


Hermione’s mother turned to her ex-husband and said, “Go find out what’s going on now. It’s been so long since Draco last came and talked to us. Something bad is happening. I feel it in my bones.”


“I’ll go,” Harry volunteered. He walked out of the waiting room and down the long corridor. He was very worried. At approximately ten-thirty the night before, Draco Owled him to tell him that Hermione was in labour, a month prematurely. Harry went right to Whitehall, the younger Malfoys’ primary residence since Narcissa had moved back into the Manor with Lucius. He took Alice to his house and then he met them back at St. Mungo’s, after apparating Hermione’s mother, father and stepfather there.


That was fourteen hours ago. About noon today, Ginny brought Alice and James with her to the hospital, leaving Albus and baby Lily with her folks, because she was worried and couldn’t stay away. They were all worried, and the lack of news was making it ten times worse. An hour ago, Draco had come out with a Healer to say that Hermione was still in labour, and that she was doing fine, but there were a few complications. That was the last news anyone had heard.


Harry continued walking down the long hallway, his shoes clicking on the old, faded green tiles as he went. He stopped at a desk and asked a young witch if she had any news on Hermione Granger-Malfoy.


The woman smiled, having recognized Harry, and said that she would be right back. Harry looked at his watch and decided he would give the woman ten minutes, and if she didn’t come back with viable news at that time, he would go find out on his own.


“Potter, hey, Potter,” Draco hissed. Harry looked up.


“Malfoy?” Harry approached Draco. He was looking out a set of double doors. “My goodness, what in the blazes is going on? It’s been effing forever!”


“I know, I know, she’s having a hard row to hoe, so to speak,” Draco said, “or is the saying a hard boat to row. Hell, I don’t understand these antiquated Muggle expressions, and at this point, I don’t care. I’m sleep deprived, and my wife is in pure agony, and she says I’m never getting close to her with my penis again, and frankly, I don’t really want to anyway.”


“What do the Healers say?” Harry asked.


“They didn’t really say anything, I mean, they don’t care if I get close to her with my penis or not,” Draco went on.


Harry frowned and then he pushed Draco’s shoulder and said, “Are you daft? What did the Healers say about Hermione? Why is it taking so long? Is she okay? Is the baby okay?”


Draco sort of shrugged and walked back through the double doors and into another small waiting room. Harry followed him. Draco said, “I don’t know. They just now made me leave and told me to wait in here. I’m worried sick. I know we didn’t tell anyone, but it’s a boy, Potter. A son.”


Harry smiled. “Good, make it more even, that way, Alice and Hermione won’t gang up on you so much.”


“Hell, they still will, the whole bloody lot of them will probably be against me. That’s the story of my life. You know what I’m really afraid of, Potter?” Draco asked.


Harry had never seen Draco seem so apprehensive. He asked, “What, Malfoy?”


“What if my kids are in Gryffindor someday? I mean, how did you manage the shame of it?”


Harry felt like hitting the man, but he could see that he was sleep deprived and frankly, serious in his concern, so Harry said, “I muddled through somehow.”

“Yes, but I don’t want that sort of life for my kids, I mean, it was alright for you, growing up under a cupboard, and for Weasley, growing up in a family of a hundred people and one bathroom, and Hermione, growing up a Mudblood, but my children deserve better. Do you think I can give the sorting hat money to ensure they’re in Slytherin someday?”


Harry looked toward the Heavens and mouthed the words, ‘Give me strength’…as Draco continued, “I mean, my kids will be Malfoys, and I want something more for them! I mean, Weasley looked awful in those Gryffindor colours, don’t you know.”


“Malfoy, have you been drinking?” Harry beseeched. “You’re worrying about all the wrong things, you stupid git. Worry about whether or not they’ll grow up healthy, and strong, and happy, and safe from harm and danger.”


“THANKS POTTER!” Draco shouted. “I thought all I had to worry about was school houses and red and gold clashing with ginger hair! Now you’ve got me worried about all sorts of things, you stupid bastard!”


Harry started laughing. He couldn’t help it. Draco was so stupid sometimes. Draco started laughing, too. He sat down on a faded, yellow leather couch, clasped his hands between his legs, lowered his head and said, “I’m worried that my wife might die. She looked bad. She was so tired.” He was speaking so low that Harry could barely hear him, but Harry suddenly knew that the ‘stupid Draco’ from before was all an act. He sat down beside Draco.


Draco continued, “What if she dies, and leaves me alone to raise Alice and a baby. What if the baby dies? How would I ever console her, if she lost a child? What’s wrong with her? Why is this taking so long? She said she didn’t have any trouble with Alice. You were there when she had Alice, right. It was a breeze compared to this, right?”


Harry nodded. He didn’t know what to say to the other man, but he didn’t have to say anything, because Lucius was standing in the doorway and he said, “Potter, go find my granddaughter. I want her brought back up to the waiting room, in fact, bring everyone back to this room.” Harry stood, nodded, and walked out of the room, leaving Draco alone with his father.


“Son?” Lucius sat beside his son on the sofa. He placed a hand on his back. “Son?” he repeated.


“Not now, father,” Draco pleaded. “Just be here with me, but don’t lecture me. Don’t tell me to buck up and be a man. Don’t tell me not to be afraid. Don’t tell me to act like a Malfoy. I’m afraid and if I want to act afraid, I shall.”

“That’s actually what I was going to say,” he said with a sigh. He patted his son’s back again, and left his hand there. Soon, the entire group joined Draco in this second waiting room. Alice was the last to come in, along with Harry and James.


Harry was carrying both children. He placed them on the ground when he entered. Alice could see how worried all the adults seemed. She walked up to her father and said, “Daddy, where’s Mummy?”


“She’s still having the baby,” Draco said, taking his daughter in his arms, and placing her on his lap.


“It’s taking a long time to come,” Alice said plainly. “Daddy, do you want to talk about the plans for my fifth birthday? It will take your mind off Mummy.”


Draco hugged her. “You’re such a little adult sometimes,” he said in her hair. He kissed her and added, “But no, I don’t want to talk about your birthday right now, sweetheart. It’s December, and your birthday isn’t until March, so we still have time to plan your birthday. Right now I just want to concentrate on the baby’s birthday.”


“When’s the baby’s birthday?” she asked.


“I hope it will be today,” Draco answered.


“Why does it get to have a birthday before mine?” she asked.


Lucius said, “Sibling rivalry already and its not even born yet. That’s why we only had one child.”

“We only had one because we couldn’t have anymore,” Hermione’s father said sadly.


“That was our reason, too,” Narcissa said, placing her hand on his arm. She looked over at Lucius and smiled. He smiled back.


“What if we can’t have any more?” Draco asked.


“Then you’ll have to be happy with what you have,” Alice said plainly, sliding off his lap and heading toward Ron. All of the adults smiled or shook their heads at her wisdom.


Ron was holding Alice’s book and her dragon for her. She held out her arms, he placed the dragon there first, and then the book and then he picked her up and sat with her in the corner.


James walked over and crawled up in his Uncle’s lap as well, and Ron began to read to them. After a few moments Harry said, “Gin, take the kids home.”


“They’re fine,” Ron said, as he stopped reading. He began to read again. Just then, a Healer walked into the room.


All eyes fell upon the woman.


“Mr. Malfoy?”


Draco stood.


“Your wife was very, very tired, so we had to take the baby magically. It’s the magical equivalence of a c-section, but she’s doing fine, and so is your son. Would you like to see them?”


“A son,” Lucius said proudly, standing next to Draco.


Draco nodded, and left the room without a backwards glance. Lucius smiled again and said, “Yes, very good, very good, we will finally have our little Scorpius after all. That’s what we would have named a second son, if we had, had one. Scorpius Antares Malfoy.”


“Scorpius?” Alice asked from the corner, with a look of utter disgust on her face. The expression on her face relayed what everyone else was thinking. She looked up at Ron and said, “Scorpius is the name of a constellation, and Antares is a bright red star in that constellation, Uncle Ron. Whoever heard of a name like that? At least my name is from a book.”


Ron shook his head at the fact that she knew all of this, but he finally said, “We’ll just have to call him Sam for short.”

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