The early morning in Diagon Alley was quiet, bar the couple of little cafés that served coffee to go for the harried-looking bankers and Ministry workers on their way into the office. “Thank you, Daniel,” she returned the handsome barrister’s still-awed smile before once again heading out into Diagon Alley. Apparently the years spent away completing her mastery helped with her fame in Britain but she was starting to get recognised again as she became more of a fixture in the wizarding shopping district.
She'd missed London, both Magical and Muggle. Returning to the UK after three years in Switzerland working on her Mastery was the coming home Hermione needed and looked forward to. There was also a sense of trepidation when she landed at the Ministry a week ago and looked around to see if anyone had come to greet her. But amongst the sea of unfamiliar faces stood only the tall figure of Theo Nott, her friend and lawyer, to greet her and sweep her through to his office to finalise some paperwork before she could settle in. No Harry, no Ron, no friends at all.
As they made their way up and through the atrium to take the floo to the Leaky Cauldron, she felt the twist of the knife of cruel fates in her gut again. Somewhere deep down she had known this is what it would come to, but a part of her had always held hope she wouldn’t be abandoned this way.
“Hermione! Hold up!”
She jumped out of her skin at the call and twirled around with her hand already on her thigh holster before she recognised the tall frame of Theo Nott hurrying his long steps towards her. “Theo, you scared me to death,” she sighed and relaxed, waiting for him to join her.
He was carrying his own paper cup, no doubt with one of those fancy vanilla lattés he seemed to prefer, and shortened his stride to suit her much more petite form. “Ha, as if it would take that little,” he grinned at her rakishly and in that moment she thought he was rather handsome. But he was also very much gay so she smiled and looped her arm through his elbow casually as they headed up the street.
“What are you up to so early?” she asked when they fell into step after a moment of silence.
“On my way to a client but I wanted to check in on you. How are you settling in?” he nodded to the shop coming up in front of them.
She couldn’t help her smile widening at the sight of 129b Diagon Alley, and the tasteful sign above which read GG Jewels . It was a suggestion she picked up from a surprising friend whom she met in Milan on one of her vacations. She’d never expected to become friends with Blaise Zabini of all people but the tenacious Slytherin was starting a clothing line at that point and he was utterly enchanted by what she was developing for her mastery thesis, recognising the revolutionary nature of the spellwork for his clothing. It was his suggestion because the Italian word for jewellery was gioielleria , and Granger Gioielleria was the perfect brand as far as he was concerned. So she compromised and shortened it to GG as her signature. When he teasingly suggested GG might as well stand for the Golden Girl, she felt no hesitation or remorse at sending a stinging hex his way for the reminder of the horrid nickname. But Blaise had encouraged her, and it had been his suggestion to contact Theo to legally represent her and her business, which resulted in another surprising friendship.
“The shop is more settled than my flat, to be honest, but at least the library is done and I have somewhere to sleep. My stock has arrived, and I’m also making one of a kind custom pieces. The orders are already coming in, I think I’ll need staff shortly to mind the front while I work in the back,” she admitted.
He whistled in awe. “That’s amazing, and you’ve been here only a week! Not that you didn’t have a reputation with your craft beforehand,” he acknowledged. “Anyone come by to visit yet?”
She shrugged, though he could obviously see it was bothering her. “Fleur stopped by and I had dinner with her and Bill. Their second baby’s due in a couple of months. It was lovely to catch up with them but I haven’t seen anyone else,” she admitted.
“Well, I know something you don’t,” he said in a sing-song voice that he knew got on her nerves, but by Merlin he couldn’t help but tease her, just to see that incredible hair of hers grow in irritation with her magic.
“Oh yeah? And what might that be?” she stopped, looking at him with a raised brow.
He just grinned and pressed a fleeting kiss to her cheek before heading towards Leaky. “You’ll have to wait and see!”
“You’re an arse, Theodore!”
“You know you love it! Don’t act like you haven’t checked it yet!” he called over his shoulder, strutting his hips for a few steps until he could hear her laughter.
His expression sobered shortly though, still worried for her. There was a sense of isolation around Hermione, and the irony of her previous school enemies being her closest friends while her supposed friends kept their distance wasn’t lost on him either. Thank Merlin that Blaise was arriving in a couple of days to cheer her up.
Hermione chuckled and shook her head at his antics. Bless the man for being there for her in his own dramatic ways. He and Blaise were good friends.
Friends... The word tasted funny on her lips these days. They used to be inseparable, Harry, Ron and her. But after an intense year on the run, the boys left to start training as Aurors and found their other halves, Harry in Luna and Ron in Lavender. She was happy for them, they seemed to be doing what they loved and lived a happy life. But with her life at Hogwarts and her Mastery later on, the letters dwindled before they stopped altogether, and when she wrote to let them know she was returning, she received no response. Over the years the newspapers told her all she needed to know as to why - they were still very much celebrities here, Harry already named Deputy-Head Auror for Robards, and Ron at his hip, grinning at the cameras as he enjoyed the spotlight. It was clear that their friendship with her was no longer a priority for them.
Gods, she was being maudlin and it was barely eight o’clock in the morning… She unlocked the shop doors and bent down to pick up the copy of Daily Prophet in her letterbox, reading the short article on the front page discussing her new shop and arrival to Wizarding Britain as she settled behind the counter with her tea and took a moment to start her day. The writer of the Prophet article appeared to be surprised that her path has taken her towards jewellery, and to be fair it was the same question Blaise and Theo had asked her as well.
After her NEWTs she wanted to pursue something that required a lot of magical skill while improving people’s lives in ways other than being an Auror, Healer or Curse Breaker, which were the most popular careers after the war. So she studied charms, working with runic protections, warding, even researching broadly on how to best incorporate charms into objects in a much more layered way. This led her to wonder about charms in everyday items such as jewellery. Similar charms existed - something to weave into clothing so it never wrinkles for example, or Auror robes to deflect some minor curses. Some wedding bands or small jewels for children were layered with protective charms, or blood wards to recognise the wearer in vaults or for payment authorisation. But it has previously only been possible to layer two spells at the most for long-term effect, which also had to be reapplied regularly and wore out eventually. Her charm formula allowed the wards to not just be layered but integrated into the object, woven into its magical fabric to latch onto and sustain for long periods of time.
Her dissertation was as thick as a dictionary and half of it was just her formula that roused the interests of the international charms academic community. She even received a letter from Professor Flitwick congratulating her on her achievements. Mistress Devereaux beamed with pride at her apprentice as Hermione received the gold medal for contribution to the Charms field at the International Conference in Geneva last October.
Once she patented the spell work in autumn of last year, the royalties from its use started coming in - Blaise and his studios being her first subscriber, shortly followed by Gringotts, St Mungo’s and the Ministry for use on their robes and badges, and even Malfoy Industries for use in their developing lines. And those were just the UK-based users. All these companies were paying to use her formula on their products and essential items. That’s when she decided to go ahead and hire Theo, as well as an Account Manager at Gringotts to deal with all the income and investments, and decided to focus on what had really made her intrigued and happy - applying her knowledge and being creative with crafting jewellery.
Making magical jewellery was incredibly intricate work, forging and weaving the charms and wards into delicate precious metal pieces. She started with wedding bands but just before Christmas worked up to making more intricate pieces such as custom jewellery for children. In February she successfully crafted magical silver bracelets that helped enhance the spells in surrounding wards, which were ordered by a local hospital in Zürich for their equivalent of Mungo’s Janus Thickey ward, to keep their patients calm through the charmed jewellery. That was the deal breaker that persuaded her to go into magical jewellery crafting full-time and continue her studies and charms practice on her own terms.
When she told Theo she was thinking of coming back and opening a shop in London, he was an absolute superstar. He viewed several shop venues for her in London and even in Edinburgh, and showed her the memories in a pensieve to make a final decision, settling on Diagon Alley as originally planned. He even fast-tracked all the paperwork for the shop and the adjoining flat, and had the place visited by magical contractors before she arrived last week to clear it out and paint all the walls and ceilings, ready for her to sort out her own home and shop front once she arrived. The shop at 129b Diagon Alley used to house Whizz Hard Books, but the owner went bankrupt and it had been gathering dust for years. Hermione found the shop front nice and sunny as she added the appropriate displays and security for the jewellery she made, and sorted out the adjoining three bedroom flat at 129a with the library and window seat of her dreams.
She finished reading the paper and confirmed she had the orders for today ready before opening the shop for what will turn out to be a busy day. The door barely closed before it opened again, and the sight of the happy customers leaving her shop was worth the tiredness that was settling in her shoulders. As she checked the register just before closing time, she couldn’t help the melancholy smile that graced her lips. She had three new orders for custom jewel pieces, all for soulbound couples.
As with any traumatic event such as the Second Wizarding war, there was a rise in marriages and a population boom in the past few years, people rejoicing in being alive and being able to love freely without putting their loved one in danger. The parties sprouted at every step after the funerals, with eager people, young and old, those who were yet unmatched or those who lost a partner and still hoped to find that which eluded them.
When a witch or a wizard reached their maturity, they came into ownership of either a lock or a key, a magical tattoo on their wrist that turned into an actual lock or key when they met their soulmate. For many of her female classmates and friends, the lock was what appeared just on the inside of their wrist, right over the pulse point and connected to their magic and the beat of their heart. For most men a key appeared on their wrist, a specific key to match a specific lock, one soul corresponding to another.
She had snorted at first when she found out about the phenomenon. Of course women had the bloody lock and men held the key to unlock their soul. And their knickers. How fucking predictable, she had thought, considering how patriarchal a lot of their society and their laws still were.
Something within her always bristled at the notion that she was a lock waiting for someone to shove a key into, to bring ‘perfect bliss’ to her life. Was it because she was a muggleborn that she was so much more critical of the concept? Every pureblood and half-blood who grew up around soulmates has always talked about it with reverence. But for some reason she couldn’t muster the same joy; too stubborn, too persuaded about her own righteousness at the tender age of fifteen, just as Viktor Krum waltzed his way into her life during the Yule ball. But when he smiled at her sadly and told her to write to him, letting him know when her lock appeared so they could test for their compatibility, she started to understand that it perhaps may be something special, something that could mean magic was helping her find the right person to love.
Could it be the case that she was actually resentful of the idea because it felt like someone prescribing her future instead of giving her a helping hand in finding the one person she could truly be happy with? Could she accept this for what it was and focus on the fact that her soul had a mate, someone made for her, someone who could understand her on a level no one could or tried to before? Was it really possible?
She didn’t give it much thought throughout the fifth year as they dealt with Umbridge, and headed into her sixth year with some trepidation. She was the first person in their year to celebrate their birthday as it was on the nineteenth of September. The morning of her birthday as she turned seventeen, she opened her eyes, ready and even a little excited to find out if she too had the lock tattooed across the inside of her wrist, signifying her readiness to find her soulmate. Instead, as she sat up in bed and looked down at her wrists, she discovered not only a lock, but also a key.
Her heart stuttered, seeing the lock detailed in delicate dark swirls of ink on her right wrist, and a beautiful ornate key with a soft magenta ribbon wrapped around her wrist in a swirl of ink as well. How could this be? What did it mean? Her hands sprung to action and she reached for the book she had been reading the night before, flicking through its pages to find the reference to the soulmate tattoos again.
One mark per person….either a lock or a key….designs vary…..lock typically appear in women….. Rare instance of no marking if soulmate not dead or castor damaged their soul enough to sever a soulmate bond….turn to the item you own once the soulmates meet in person…. little variance observed over the years….
No mention at all of having both. How was this possible? What did it even mean? Knowing there was no way around it and Lavender and Parvati and Padma would want to see her mark the moment she opened those bed curtains, she cast a glamour over the key and prayed it wouldn’t draw any attention while she researched what the hell this actually meant. Predictably, the Patil twins cooed over her lock and Lavender turned up her nose at her, saying something about Ron that had Hermione frowning. Whatever bee was in that girl’s bonnet, she was too distracted with her discovery to take much note.
But months later, her research yielded no answers, and though many boys from the seventh year had asked if they could test their marks for compatibility, she only ever revealed the lock on her wrist, feeling further despair as no matter who rubbed their hand across her mark, it lay dormant and unresponsive. No, she was once again the odd one, the anomaly. She finally accepted that perhaps she owned both a lock and a key because there was no one for her. Because she was her own soulmate. Or maybe she pissed off someone badly enough in her past life that this was just her karmic penance. Who knew?
But at least her craft allowed her to forgo the constant application of glamorous each morning, and instead she had make her own gold torc bangle for her left wrist last year, to permanently hold protective charms to deflect some curses and minor spells, resist manipulation, and conceal the ugly slur scar on her forearm as well as the key on her wrist. She never took it off, even when showering or sleeping, and it had become second nature for her to no longer see the key on her wrist these days. That didn’t mean it was any easier, living with the knowledge that unlike all the happy couples who came through her doors today, she would never have a soulmate in another person but herself.
When the bell above her door announced a new arrival, she nearly jumped, seeing it was a minute past closing time. “I’m very sorry but I’m just closing down,” she came around the doorframe from her workroom and stopped at the sight of a very familiar pair of redheads. “Gred! Forge!” She smiled a little hesitantly, though they’ve exchanged letters over the years and she knew that the twins’ shop was using her patented formula - they told her themselves as they congratulated her on the success. Was this a welcome?
“So she does remember us!” Fred exclaimed, followed closely by his twin.
“We were starting to worry-”
“since you’ve been here a week-”
“and still no visit to our shop. Honestly, witch-”
“do you no longer love us?”
“You’ll have to let us down gently-”
“Freddie here just had his heart broken.”
She couldn't help but laugh at their antics, the joyous tinkling sound making both of them grin. She stepped around the counter, missing their look of appreciation at her simple pencil skirt and light jumper that did nothing to hide her curves.
Fred, as the bolder of the two, reached for her and wrapped his arms around her in a hug, but she felt a searing pain pulse through her very magical core before her world went black.
“She’ll be fine, just give her a moment. Oh for Merlin’s sake- sit down before I make you.”
The sound of the argument around her was a little bit blurred, as if coming from a distant palace, but she focused on the sound and the hissed words above her until she felt well enough to blink her eyes open, trying to focus with the light of her workroom blinding her a little.
“Then why is she still not waking up?” George’s calming voice floated to her despite Fred’s irritated snarl.
“Because she had a magical shock. My scans are thorough, there is nothing wrong with her, she just needs a bit of time.”
She would have recognised that voice anywhere. “Thanks, I’m fine, stop fussing,” she groaned and pushed up to sit up slowly.
“There you have it, she’s fine,” Pansy Parkinson crossed her arms impatiently and glared at the redheaded duo.
“Oh thank Merlin,” Fred paused in his pacing and ran a hand over his face. “I thought I hurt you or something, you went down like a sack of potatoes, love,” his hair was sticking out in all directions from running his hand through it but his frown morphed into a grin. “I mean if you wanted to be in my arms so bad, all you had to say,” he winked, making Pansy snort at their insufferable antics.
“Take it easy, Granger, your blood sugar is a bit low, you should eat more regularly,” she reached into her Vuitton handbag and pulled out a dark chocolate cereal bar. “This should help.”
“Thanks,” she tried to stand but wavered enough to have four hands steadying her in a flash. There was another wave of magic, making her gasp and knocking her off her feet as the two men beside her also doubled over.
They all landed in their seats, Fred hitting the ground with an ‘oof’ before a bolt of golden light flashed through the room and Hermione suddenly felt something land in her lap heavily.
She pressed a hand to her chest to feel her wildly beating heart and looked down, gasping at the sight before her. In her lap were her lock and her key, with a lovely ribbon. What the-
“Morgana’s tits, this is fucking priceless,” Pansy was laughing so much she was nearly doubled over as she looked at the three of them, wiping a stray tear from the corner of her eye as she flicked her wand over them and grinned. “Yup, congratulations, you just found your soulmates! Of course it would be Saint Granger to break the mould,” she snickered. “And I have a shift to get to so - good luck!” she picked up her bag and the door of her shop opened and closed quietly, taking with it the sound of her giggles.
Hermione looked at the twins with bewilderment. They were looking at each other intently, silently communicating over the lock and key they each also held.
No, no, no, no. Just, no.
This couldn’t be it. It couldn’t- both of them? Two soul mates? But…how was that even possible?
“It makes sense. We left school and then during the war they were away. Didn’t even really get a chance to see her at Bill’s wedding before-”
“The Death Eaters crashed it and they left. And after the war you were in the in hospital and I was running the shop and then-”
“She left for her Mastery. We haven’t really seen each other properly in five year, not enough to-”
“Test or find out if we were compatible,” George finished for them both before turning to Hermione.
Putting together their twinspeak, she realised that they were absolutely right. She had seen them of course but never in the past five years did they get close enough to each other for them to touch, certainly not to all three of them at the same time, and find out that they were soulmates.
“Fuck,” she groaned and ran her hands through her wild curls, the magical jolt leaving it a little bit angry and twice its usual size.
They appeared shocked for a moment, as they hadn't previously heard her swear, not once, but Fred recovered first and cleared his throat. “Well, this is…enlightening. We’ve always known that one set of locks and keys was for each other, but this is unexpected.”
“Unexpected?” she asked in disbelief. “Try statistically nearly impossible. There hasn’t been a magical triad in at least a century, not to mention-”
“A soulbound one,” George added, nodding in understanding. “Look Hermione, we came today to say hello and to take you to dinner to welcome you back. I know this is…a lot, but maybe still going for that dinner would allow us to talk?” he suggested.
She looked between them a little fretfully, teeth digging into her bottom lip as she contemplated the offer. Truth be told, she wasn’t really sure what to do. She came back because she missed home and hoped to build her life here, her career, her shop. This…this was so unexpected, not to mention staggering, she didn’t know what to make of them. “I…don’t know,” she whispered, clutching the cereal bar and suddenly not feeling hungry at all. “I don’t think I can eat, but I could certainly use a drink,” she admitted.
“That we can do. Are you happy to come up to ours? We’re just down the road and it will allow us to be undisturbed,” Fred suggested, grimacing at the possibility of a report skulking about to catch their conversation.
She was about to suggest slipping next door to her flat but realised that she neither had any alcohol, nor did she want to take away the option to leave if she felt like she needed to. “Okay.”
The flat they stepped into was cosy, a spacious open plan living room leading into a kitchen, separated only by a bar with tall stools for meals. The large L-shaped sofa looked very comfortable and she slipped out of her flats and hung up her handbag on the coat rack near the door before taking a seat as George invited her to. Fred made himself busy in the kitchen, taking only a moment to float in a seat service with a plate of slightly burned biscuits.
“Do you bake?” she blurted out before she could stop herself.
“Well, I try,” George admitted, rubbing the back of his neck self-consciously. “Freddie cooks more often than not and I like to experiment with baking but as you can tell, I’m not particularly good.
She took a quick bite from the biscuit she placed on her plate and hummed. “Dried apricots and macadamia?”
He nodded. “Do you like them?”
“Apricots are my favourite dried fruit…and macadamias are my favourite nuts. These are delicious,” she admitted with a shrug. George’s winning smile was most definitely not making her feel warm and her magic happy. Nope. Must be indigestion.
Fred added a set of tumblers and a bottle of whiskey on the table, catching her slight grimace. “Not a whiskey fan then. Gin or vodka maybe?”
“Gin please,” she said with relief. She drank little but when she did, she avoided the magical whiskey at all costs after an accident when she hiccuped while drinking and ended up shooting flames through her nose into the loo….
Tea and drinks poured and everyone settled, she took them both in, trying to understand how in the world she had two soulmates, especially these two men. They’d always been friendly for sure, but she was so young when she knew them and stayed at the Burrow, stubborn and prideful and forever reprimanding Fred’s darker streak. Though looking at it now, it was wholly unfair of her considering she’d put Skeeter into a jar for a month herself… And though they deal with jokes and humour, there was a brilliance to their inventions, a true craft. They may only have 3 OWLs each and never went back to get their NEWTS, but they were so talented with charms and potions, creative, both loyal, clearly very driven and smart with their business. There was a lot to admire, not to mention they were admittedly very handsome.
It wasn’t like she was trying to work her way through the Weasleys as the vicious rumours suggested. Bill was a dear friend, Charlie was a good pen pal, she never really spoke to Percy, the twins were…okay, they were hot, her affection for Ron fizzled out when he started sucking face with Lavender and Ginny…well, they’d only shared one kiss when playing spin the bottle and she adored her fire but they were barely even friends these days. Fine, Skeeter did get one thing right, she had a type, loathe as she was to admit it. She loved the fire in their hair, the constellations of freckles and enigmatic hazel eyes that sparkled with gold and mischief in the right light. Finding them attractive would be no hardship, but wrapping her head about the situation was a bit more difficult.
She looked at the three sets of locks and keys on the table and frowned. “Did you always know that you had two soulmates?” she asked finally, starting them off when she noted they seemed to be waiting for her to make up her mind on where to start.
Her response was a tandem nod before George answered. “When they appeared, the first thing we did was to test our wrists against each other. It was a strange sensation, warm but hollow, an indication of us being connected but lacking the third that would complete our bond and allow for our locks and keys to appear. Do you know much about magical twins?”
She shook her head and sipped her tea as she motioned for him to go ahead, noting with relief it was her favourite earl grey.
“Well magical twins are unique. Muggles have this legend about twins being split from the same soul, which is what accounts for their closeness. Magical twin theory is different. We may be identical, but we each have our own magical core and essence, which means we have our own souls. But they will always be kindred, and always strive to be close,” he explained. “A soulmate is not just someone you have a romantic love for, a soulmate can be someone your soul simply cannot be without and will always be fulfilled with. We knew from the moment we turned seventeen that we will be part of a triad, someone to complete the both of us and love us equally but in our own way while our part of the bond is satisfied with our familial love,” he explained.
“So you two wouldn’t-” she pointed between them, leaving the sentence unfinished.
Fred grinned and wrapped an arm around George’s shoulders. “While I find my brother most handsome-”
“And Freddie is particularly irresistible-” George replied with an arm around his waist,
“Not like that. We are affectionate with each other-”
“We’re each other’s best friend-”
“And when we shared before, we learnt that things go bump in intimate moments-”
“But we don’t see each other that way.”
Hermione nodded, adapting quickly to the way they talked to try and keep up. Something within their speech however gave her a pause. “You’ve shared before, as in, one woman, together?”
They nodded and Fred took to answering this time. “We’ve always known what we like and share in our preferences. Some women can find it a bit too much though, a bit intense, so we’ve only shared twice before realising something never quite fit despite it feeling right to share.”
She nodded and finished her tea before knocking back a mouthful of gin, reaching for the bottle to refill despite their raised brows.
“Okay, one more question. I know we have some getting-to-know-each-other to do and it’s a bit…new to be considering being a part of a triad but I’m…not opposed to it being you,” she tried to find the right words before grimacing. “That didn’t come out right, sorry. What I mean is that what I know of you, I’m.. happy with. Oh fuck it,” she rubbed a hand over her face before noticing them trying not to laugh valiantly. Her narrowed gaze however settled them a bit and she just forced the thought out as it came. “I need to get used to the idea that I’m going to be in a triad, soulbond, and want to get to know you better. But I feel like I already like you and know you enough to be glad it’s you.”
There, that would do.
“Well, we are very loveable but for now we’ll make do with you liking us,” Fred grinned.
“And while grateful to hear it, that wasn’t your question,” George pointed out, ever perceptive.
“Right, yes,” she cleared her throat. “I just wanted to check that you’re also alright with it being me? I don’t know what your preference is, you probably still think of me as your brother’s friend but-” she stopped rambling when she felt a pulse of magic crawl up her spine at Fred’s touch to her hand. Gods, the soulmate magic was heady and the little bit of contact was already making her itch a little for more.
He let go of her hand when he noticed it was too distracting and she watched them sharing a look, communicating silently for a few moments before Fred turned to her once more with a smile. “While it has been a while since we saw each other, we don’t have any doubts about you being able to balance us, and we would love to get to know the Hermione of today better.”
Okay, that was good, that will do. “Alright. Well, thanks for the tea, I…it’s been a long day and I’d like to think about this a bit,” she stood to gather her handbag and shoes.
They stood with her as well, making her hide a smile at their manners, and went to the door with her to see her out.
“Maybe we could try an actual dinner next time?” George suggested, hoping to leave them in a good place to build on.
Hermione slipped on her shoes and nodded. “I haven’t had a chance to check out the new restaurants here. Happy for you to choose something,” she suggested. “Owl me?”
“Will do,” Fred winked and leaned down to kiss her cheek, making her breath hitch for a moment.
Not to be outdone, George leaned in and pressed a kiss to her other cheek, leaving her rosy as she put away her lock and key, and waved them goodbye before descending the stairs and hurrying to her own flat.
A few days later the bell above the door to her shop let her know someone just walked in so she came around the corner with a practised smile that froze momentarily at the sight of the brunette before her.
“Parkinson,” she greeted cautiously, seeing her eyeing up her charm bracelets with interest.
At the sound of her voice she looked up and straightened her posture, taking in Hermione’s simple charcoal dress. “I came to check on you. And when I mentioned to Neville that you were back, he insisted I pass on this letter and invite you for dinner,” she set a neat little envelope on the glass counter.
“Neville?” Hermione picked the letter up with confusion as her gaze flicked back to the brunette. “What do you-”
“Ah,” Pansy lifted her left hand, showing off a beautiful engagement ring of yellow diamonds and pearls. “The wedding is in three weeks.”
“Congratulations,” Hermione managed, trying to wrap her head around that match. “Are you two-”
“Soulmates? Yes,” Pansy nodded. “I’m working at Mungo’s as a specialised healer for soulbound couples. Well, soulbound matches,” she amended in light of the current situation with this magical triad.
“Do I need to come for any check ups or anything?” Hermione asked worriedly, suddenly realising it has been so long since she looked at the laws around soulmate magic that she wasn’t even sure if the Ministry put some process in place.
Pansy was however already shaking her head. “No, nothing like that. We just advise that those trying to get pregnant make sure to come in for specialised scanning, as the magic of a pregnant witch can get a bit out of hand when fed through the soul bond,” she pointed out. “Everything else is registered magically. There should be a record at the ministry that you have found your matches about now, that’s about it,” she explained, seeing the brunette was much changed from her days of righteousness.
The woman before her was still petite but as curvy as Pansy wasn’t, her deep golden skin clear and wild curls taking up most of the space on her shoulders. She could easily see Granger fitting into the erratic energy of the troublesome twosome at lunch at the Burrow or at one of the famous Weasley parties. Honestly, ever since Draco married the Weaslette, their friend groups have completely blended and now it was an absolute rave anytime they met for a birthday, wedding or any other occasion. The only one left unattached were Theo who refused to tell them if he had found his soulmate at all, Daphne who was building her career and casually dating muggle women, and Blaise who was currently working on his business in Italy.
Speak of the devil , her brow raised as the very man she was thinking about stepped through the door with a large grin. Surprisingly enough, the answering grin that split across Granger’s face was just as large.
“Blaise!” she greeted warmly and let herself get swooped in a hug before they exchanged kisses on each cheek.
“Tesoro, you’re looking well,” he smiled fondly and squeezed her again before taking a step towards Pansy with an amused smile. “Pansy Parkinson, soon-to-be Longbottom. You’re looking well too,” he leaned down and kissed her cheeks airily, skin barely touching.
“As if I would leave the house looking anything less than my usual standard,” she pointed out, looking over his perfectly tailored vintage Versace suit. “You’re still living the bachelor life, I hear.”
He winked as his hand slipped into the pockets of his slacks. “What can I say, I’m picky about the company I keep.”
She snorted. “Not the company you take to bed,” she pointed out.
Hermione watched them bickering with amusement, her head cocked to the side as she tried to imagine them as the couple the rumours once had them.
Pansy noticed her silence and looked at her pointedly. “What?”
Hermione shrugged. “You know there were rumours once, that since your betrothal to Draco fell through, the two of you were dating and would marry?”
Pansy’s snort was neither elegant nor lady-like, but the very thought of such a thing had her stomach roiling. “That’s the most ludicrous thing I’ve ever heard. If he was my husband, I would poison his tea.”
Blaise only chuckled, much to Hermione’s amusement. “Pansy darling, if I was your husband, I would drink it.”
Hermione’s tinkling laughter filled the shop front, sharp as a knife and absolutely joyful. While Pansy startled at the sound, Blaise was looking at the Gryffindor with a fond smile that spoke of a kind of love, respect and friendship she had only ever seen confined to their common room. Judging by the way Theo and Blaise were both so openly fond of her, Hermione Granger was an honorary snake. Pansy could live with that.
“Now, I haven’t had lunch and am starving, so you better take me somewhere delicious,” Blaise grinned before stepping closer and frowning a little as he picked up one of her curls, rubbing the end gently between his fingers. “And perhaps a salon? Honestly tesoro, they will think we can’t take care of your beautiful hair in Italy. Or is this the lovely English weather making you out of sorts?”
She tugged on it a little self-consciously, well aware it has gone a bit more frizzy in the last couple of weeks. “I think it’s just in a desperate need of some love, and maybe braids for a while to give the styling a rest,” she admitted.
“Then you must try Parvati’s salon, it is absolutely divine. She has a knack for thick South Asian hair, and has a gorgeous assistant Clarice who has a waiting list for her braids and treatments. But I’m sure she’ll be able to fit you in, being who you are and all,” Pansy promised before heading for the door, pointedly waiting for Blaise to come round and open it. “First, lunch. Then we can get you in a shape to have your men drooling,” she winked.
“Men?” Blaise raised a brow as she summoned her handbag and he opened the door for the two ladies. “Someone better fill me in.”
After saying her goodbyes to Blaise and Pansy, Hermione made her way back to the shop to check the last of the orders she finished before posting them with the local owl post across the street. It has been a slow day in the shop which meant she got to work on her custom pieces. Having made actual friends with Pansy and seeing Blaise again had made the day perfect. Now all she needed was to get into some comfortable pyjamas, order in, and give her head a rest.
She was used to doing her own box braids, taking her time throughout one whole day to do smaller sections and give her hands a rest. Clarice was a bloody artist. She worked with her hands, her wand, magic making a process that took her a whole day last a whole of forty-five minutes once they agreed on plain black. It wasn’t that she didn’t like colour, but she felt like keeping it simple and versatile, and just highlight the braids with some golden clasps of her own making. She was thinking of making her own little clasps and weaving in protection against the ever present autumnal humidity when her wards chimed, announcing a visitor.
She tied the strings on her plaid trousers and made sure her simple black henley wasn’t showing much of her cleavage before checking her wards and opening the door a smidge, wand in hand. She breathed a sigh of relief when she saw it was the very men she’d been discussing with her friends earlier.
“Er hi,” she greeted a bit uncertainly, not sure why they were at her doorstep at six o’clock in the evening.
The answering identical grins set her heart pounding a little bit harder, not that they needed to know that. Fred finally answered, much to her relief. “Sorry to barge in on you but we spotted you having a quick lunch with your friends-”
“And the shop has been so busy with kids going to school soon-”
“that we haven’t had a chance to take you out for dinner yet. So-”
“we brought it with us,” George finished and lifted the two bags he was carrying, clearly filled neatly with plastic tubs and bags of deliciously smelling food.
“If you’ll have us in your home. Or we can come back to ours if you’re more comfortable. We just thought it might be nice to have a night in together,” Fred admitted and for the first time she could see the exhaustion behind the happy smiles.
Even the jokesters had sad days, tough days, tired days, quiet days, and yet they still kept going because to bring joy to the world was still needed, every single day. So she stepped aside and waved them in, hoping her cosy flat would do.
“That better be chow mein I smell,” she teased, wondering whether they managed to hit her favourites.
“Obviously! And sweet and sour sauce, and prawn toast, and we even have some roast duck and pancakes. Honestly witch, what do you take us for?” Fred teased cheekily but she could see he was watching her reaction closely, trying to learn her little expressions as much as she was trying to get to know them.
She replied with a warm smile and flicked her wand to set the low coffee table and arrange the pillows on the floor. “I am clearly going to be spoiled tonight so let’s get to it. I’m actually hungry again,” she admitted as they settled on the floor around the food and passed everything around as they loaded up their plates with different bits and bites.
She took a moment just to take them in as they bickered over the chicken balls animatedly with their chopsticks, realising that she was already relaxing in their presence. Fred had always been the more outspoken and passionate, his gestures more jerky when he argued, but she found his energy contagious. With his head turned to speak to his brother, she could see the silvery scar running from his temple past his jaw and down to his neck. The war left scars on them all, but his was a result of a whole wall caving in on him during the final battle. He’d spent months in recovery, or so she heard. He’d grown his hair out a bit, the coppery waves curling around his ears and neck until he set his chopsticks down and impatiently gathered it up into a top knot, leaving on the fringe to frame his handsome face.
George’s smile quirked with fondness as he argued his point, more calmly but clearly with a winning argument that had him grinning and Fred huffing. She could see the remnants of the ear that had been blasted off, his short hair obscuring nothing from view. And so it shouldn’t, he was a war hero, he had nothing to hide either. The glasses he wore held on above the scarred skin with what she suspected was a sticking charm to make sure they don’t fall off, and she had to suppress a sudden urge to reach out and caress the outline of the scarred flesh. Taking a startled breath she rooted around in her bowl, taking the first bite of food to calm herself. It wouldn’t do for them to sense the direction of their thoughts…
She supposed it made people more comfortable that they were more distinguishable these days, but she never had that particular problem. George had a little mole under his eye and Fred had a burst of tight-knit freckles beside his left ear. It was always easy for her to name them correctly. But seeing the changes in them reminded her that they were no longer in their teens, running around the Burrow during the school holidays. They were very much men in their mid-twenties, their shorter and slightly stockier beater’s build only refined as they grew into their squarer features. And she realised, quite suddenly, that she did find them very handsome indeed, and wondered what it would be like to sit between them, feel their warmth from each side, and get to know their minds as well as their bodies.
“These are new,” the words startled her from her thoughts as she looked up and noted George smiling, motioning at her head.
She nodded. “Had them done today, still getting used to the weight, it takes a few days to settle,” she admitted.
“Angie used to complain about the weather all the time as well, it wrecked her curls too, especially with the amount of training she did for quidditch. I know braids are supposed to be protective but I’ve always quite fancied they look lovely,” he offered a warm smile.
She found her cheeks warming a little at the compliment and chewed her little mouthful before responding. “Thank you. I’m thinking of a few more accessories, some gold clasps and beads, maybe that I can infuse with some protective magic,” she mused.
The spark in their eyes was instantaneous, and off they were peppering her with questions about how in the world did she come up with her layering spells and she just had to tell them everything about her studies and living in Switzerland. And before she knew it, the food was gone, they moved up to the sofa with a glass of Tiger each, and was taking them in as they talked about their latest product development. At one point she couldn’t keep up with shifting to see them both so she sat up on the comfortable armrest and stretched her legs out on the cushion instead. They took the hint, both turning sideways until George rested against the other side of the sofa and Fred leaned back against his chest, twining his legs around Hermione and looking like the very epitome of being comfortable.
And they clearly were, their bodies moving as one as they took a sip from their drinks before George wrapped an arm around his twin’s middle and rested his hand on the firm flat belly beneath the soft blue cotton of Fred’s shirt. She wondered whether there would be a day that she was this comfortable with them, not recalling any of her past relationships being this open. And she felt herself gravitating to them, like a gentle persistent pull on her magic, her very being, to join them and let them hold her as well.
Their laughter died down and she noticed in the silence they were both just looking at her, taking her in as she had been taking them both in tonight.
“Do you feel it too? Here?” Fred asked, pressing a hand to his sternum.
And she didn’t need to ask what he meant, she knew he felt it too. She nodded and wrapped her arms around her middle a little protectively.
“I read that the pull gets a bit stronger as time goes if we hesitate too long before bonding. But we just wanted to let you know that we’ll take as much time as we all need until we’re comfortable doing this. We move at your pace, and if at any time you pull the stop, we stop,” he said, quite serious compared to the laughter that still echoed in the room a minute ago.
“It’s not just about me though,” she pointed out.
“Sure, but we know what we want,” George answered instead. “We’ve known for a long time that our souls were companions and that we would find a woman to fulfil our bond in new ways. We just waited to find her. You didn’t even think you had a soulmate and now you had two. That will take some getting used to,” he pointed out.
“At least I don’t feel like we’re strangers. A part of me feels like I know you already, not just when I was younger but the little things that you say I know to be true intrinsically.” she tried to explain.
Fred grinned. “How do you think we guessed your food preferences tonight? It just felt like the right choice so we went with it. This fledgling bond will encourage us to get closer but for all it’s worth, even if we weren’t in this situation, we would have still been right here. Because we came to your shop that day to see you and take you out for dinner to reconnect irregardless. To find our soulmate in you has been unexpected but not unwelcome.”
She nodded and finished her beer, sending the empty bottle into the recycling box in the kitchen. “And for what it’s worth, I would have said yes,” she offered with a soft smile.
They took their cue and got up, realising the hour was getting late and they could see she was getting tired. “We won’t keep you any longer. Thank you for letting us in and having dinner with us. An actual dinner next time? Or maybe something else you fancy?”
She thought about it for a moment before nodding. “Dinner, and I like to walk, I did a lot of hiking in Switzerland. So, surprise me,” she suggested.
“Yes, ma’am,” they saluted before grinning widely and leaning down to kiss her cheek at the same time, making her head spin at the waft of bergamot, patchouli and a hint of gunpowder that clung to them both. It was a heady combination and she rooted her feet to not lean into them both.
“Good night,” she opened the door for them and watched them head out, feeling both elated and a bit apprehensive.
If the bond was already encouraging her and she was drawn to them this much, how insistent will it get with time? Deciding it was a problem for another day, she saved the leftover portion of her noodles and put the container in the microwave to reheat tomorrow before going about her nightly rituals and finally blimbing into bed, finding it momentarily too cold to her liking before drifting off.
That is how long the peace lasted before reality came crashing down around them once again.
Ever since their cosy night in, they’d gone out on a date at three times a week - either having a quick lunch in the day, a cosy dinner at one of their flats or at a nearby muggle restaurant, or one time they even took her out to a lovely boat restaurant before a walk by the Thames. It was her favourite so far. Sometimes she popped out for coffee, especially now that she had an assistant to mind the shop, and brought them some as well to indulge in when the mornings got hectic.
And as August gave way to September and the children departed for Hogwarts, the twins slowed down as well, enjoying slower but still early mornings with their designs, sometimes inviting her over for breakfast to spend some time together before the responsibilities of the day had to be dealt with.
Their soul bond was very much alive anytime they were together, and they were all starting to feel the pull of it, to bring them closer and encourage them to consummate the fledgling magic tethering them together. But they were taking their time, getting used to being in each other’s space, the occasional touch lingering when the demand from the bond got too strong. But so far it has been on her terms and Hermione relished both their respect and affection as she got used to the fact that she had two soulmates.
It was one of those slower mornings when she arrived at the twins’ flat with their favourite drinks and a bag of pastries to share, smiling warmly at George who opened the door for her looking still a bit rumpled and sleepy in his pyjamas.
“I’m sorry, am I too early?” she asked as he pulled her in for a careful hug and just breathed her in for a moment, their magical cores pulsing happily at being so close to each other.
“Not at all, I was having a lazy morning. Have a bit of a headache and haven’t slept well,” he admitted. They weren’t too much of a common occurrence but ever since the curse blasted his ear off, he would suffer from them occasionally.
Hermione set down the food and drinks and searched her handbag, coming back with a small brown glass pot. “This may help if you’d like to give it a try. It’s invaluable for the first week after I get my braid done and my head and scalp are tender. Just apply it lightly and gently work it into the skin and it sinks right in, if you’d like?” she offered.
He took it from her and looked at the soft shimmering gel-like texture that looked nice and cooling. “Thank you, are you sure you have enough?” he checked, not wanting her to be left without.
“Plenty. This is my travel pot, I have the whole thing back at home because I buy the stuff in a massive pint pot,” she grinned, shrugging when he chuckled at her shrewdness. She set her bag down and patted the sofa seat, offering for him to sit down while she applied it.
He looked a bit hesitant so she was about to back off but then he sat down and held up the small pot for her. “I…other than Freddie, no one’s ever touched this bit,” he admitted.
“I promise to be gentle. Unless you want me to get Fred to do it?” she offered, not sure where their boundaries were.
He shook his head and opened his knees up for her to step closer to reach his temples and his aching neck muscles. She pushed the sleeves of her soft jumper up to her elbows and carefully began working a small amount of the salve over his temples, down past the hairline and to the tense neck muscles. As she gently worked her fingers down down to the top of his shoulders, she felt his hands come up to hold onto her curvy hips and his forehead rested against her belly. It’s been a long time since someone touched her so intimately, and she felt her belly muscles draw in a little self-consciously.
“No please don’t…you’re so soft, I like the way you feel,” he hummed, perfectly relaxed under her touch as his nose nuzzled her soft belly through the jumper once she relaxed. “And the way you smell. Like jasmine and parchment.”
She gently lay her hand across the back of his neck, her thumb running through the short hair at the nape comfortingly as she felt the tension in his shoulders lower further thanks to the salve taking effect and smoothing out the pain.
“I like the way you feel too,“ she admitted. “Did you know I can always tell when you were in your development room because I catch a hint of gunpowder in your hair every time?” she smiled and he could hear it in her voice, reassured she liked it.
He hummed and his hands squeezed the curve of her waist in response, keeping her rooted even though she finished the massage. She flicked her wrist and the pot was closed and resting on the table as she just gave into her instinct and reached her other hand into his short coppery curls, gently carding her fingers through the strands as he rested against her. She wasn’t sure how long they stayed that way before she sensed someone’s gaze on her and looked up to see Fred, freshly showered by the look of his damp t-shirt, leaning against the doorway and just taking them in as they had their moment.
“Bathroom free?” George murmured, sensing his twin’s presence as well.
“All yours, we’ll wait for you with breakfast,” Fred promised, letting them untangle themselves in peace.
George got up and picked up her hand to kiss the palm in silent thanks for her help before heading towards the bathroom.
And before she could feel self-conscious over the intimate moment between them, Fred was by her side and wrapped an arm around her middle to pull her in for a greeting kiss that landed very much close to the corner of her lips. “Morning beautiful,” he greeted with a soft grin.
She felt her cheeks heat with a blush at his soft greeting. “Morning. I brought some food and coffee to start the day with. Though I missed my delivery of the Prophet,” she realised.
“Oh, it should have been delivered here as well, hold on,” he left her to settle on the sofa before heading for the kitchen where their mail was usually dropped off.
And then there was silence.
As the seconds ticked by, Hermione became a bit worried, twisting her head to try and see into the space. “Fred? Everything alright?”
He walked in, newspaper in hand as his eyes flicked over the rows, taking in the article on the front page. He cursed quietly before rubbing a hand over his face and passing it over.
Exclusive: Wizarding World’s first soulmate triad in nearly two centuries!
Her heart dropped in her chest and she sat down before her knees buckled as she looked over the two photos they’ve managed to catch of the three of them together, usually heading out for lunch or disappearing in the Leaky to muggle London. They tried to be as careful as possible, to appear friendly without further gossip arising, but then she recalled Pansy’s words about there being records of soul mates and though the Ministry may try to keep it secret, there was no accounting for human error and bribery to gain information.
So this is it, they’d been made, the whole world knew. Was she ready for this? Not in the slightest. But when she looked up at Fred to take in his expression, he was watching her carefully, gauging her reaction as he worried the skin around his thumbnail with his forefinger.
She turned back to the newspaper and flicked to page two, just to check for any other headlines or interviews. “Well, looks like gossip is still more important to people than the education reform,” she observed before setting the paper down. “Do you have a pencil I can borrow for the sudoku?”
He blinked at her for a moment before realising she wasn’t going to make a big deal of it and summoned a pencil for her reflexively. “It’s the Prophet, of course that’s the case. Even though the gossip is us this time.”
Hermione hummed and folded the paper, already working on the numbers in the squares with practised ease. “I’ll have to warn Sylvia, and you should maybe speak to Verity. You know how business booms after these kinds of articles, just so people can come in and gape at you for a few minutes,” she pointed out as he settled beside her and summoned plates for their breakfast.
He groaned quietly and rubbed a hand over his face. “I just want some peace after being trampled by the Hogwarts lot for the past four weeks. Lee is going to have his hands full once the Hogmead weekends begin….”
She looked up from the paper and smiled proudly at his words. “I’m still so proud of you for opening a new branch and expanding successfully.”
“Thanks,” he grinned, this time a little bashful at the praise. “I maintain we could be a force to reckon with if you only joined our development,” he hinted again.
She chuckled and cupped his cheek with a sweet smile. “Not a chance,” she grinned toothily, making him laugh at the cheeky glint in her eyes.
The moment was however interrupted with a loud thump that made them both jump. Fred rushed to the kitchen, letting in a slightly dazed little owl that landed semi-successfully on the table with a smoking red envelope. Hermione scooted back in her seat just as George came in and froze at the sight of the smoking missive.
Fred jogged back in and quickly opened the howler before it could explore, dropping down beside Hermione with a protective hand on her knee.
WHAT IS THE MEANING OF THIS?? NOT ONLY DO YOU FIND YOUR SOULMATE AND NEGLECT TO TELL ME FOR WEEKS, BUT I HAVE TO FIND OUT FROM THE PROPHET OF ALL PLACES? YOUR FATHER IS RUNNING FOR MINISTER AND YOU DARE CAUSE THIS SCANDAL?? I AM ABSOLUTELY DISGUSTED WITH THE BOTH OF YOU!
WE WILL DISCUSS THIS ON SATURDAY, AND YOU BETTER BRING THAT WRETCHED GIRL WITH YOU SO SHE CAN ANSWER FOR HERSELF!
Hermione didn’t realise she was trembling until she found herself lifted into a lap, her knees bent a little and legs stretched out over another. She let out a shaky breath and blinked rapidly to stem the tears of old wounds. No, she would not cry for Molly Weasley again. She knew that the woman barely tolerated her when they were younger, remembering well the cold shoulder she received when the rumours about her dating both Viktor and Harry broke in the Prophet. And after the war, she was just a disappointment. Molly Weasley had a plan, you see - her precious daughter was to marry the Chosen One, and her heroic son would have the childhood friend kind of love they could be famous for. Instead, and Ginny matched with Draco whom apparently Molly still occasionally hissed at from what the twins told her, and Ron matched with Lavender whom the matriarch instantly fell in love with when she proclaimed her sole purpose was to look after Ron and have his family. It appeared Molly Weasley decided that she got a much better daughter-in-law in her ex-classmate and could be rid of Hermione for good. Except, now she couldn’t.
She knew bonding with Fred and George meant accepting the Weasley family as well, and had somehow hoped for a warmer welcome but it didn’t seem likely now at all. She at least wished for a few allies at the dining table if nothing else, safe in the knowledge that Bill and Fleur were her friends at least.
“Hey,” Fred encouraged her to come back out of her thoughts and she looked at them both, suddenly realising their position and the pull of their magic to get even closer.
“Goodness, let me down, I’m crushing you,” she squirmed a little and felt his arm tighten around her hips to steady her.
“You are doing no such thing, though if you continue to rub against me like that, we may have another problem,” he chuckled, grinning when she raised a brow at the warning. “You’re just fine where you are, thank you,” his other hand came down to rest on her thigh, squeezing the thick of it gently to see if she accepted the more intimate touch.
She looked between them for a moment, allowing herself to relax into the comfort of their arms after a moment with a deep sigh. “This is not…unexpected but still I had hoped that this wouldn’t be such an issue.”
“It isn’t,” George said simply, his hand rubbing her ankle soothingly as she directed her gaze to him. “It’s not an issue for us. Bill and Fleur will be happy to welcome you into the family, Charlie just moved back and will be only glad to have someone reasonable to discuss creature rights with, and the rest of them can sod off for all I care. Don’t mind a thing anyone says, you are our soulmate and we are quite frankly ecstatic about the fact, so that’s all that matters as far as I’m concerned,” he pointed out.
She suddenly realised how her reluctance may be coming off to them both, “Oh no- that’s not…I’m happy, really happy actually, I’m enjoying spending time with you and getting to know you as my soulmates. I wouldn’t change that for the world now, but Molly never particularly liked me. And by the sound of it, she didn’t exactly expect you to share a soulmate between you,” she pointed out.
“Then she is deaf and blind because everyone else in the family expected it. Even dad,” Fred pointed out. At her surprised look he nodded and explained. “When we re-opened the shop after the war, he came by one afternoon to check on us and ask how we’re doing. We’ve been seeing Angelina at that point, but she asked that we only say she’s dating George to start with, in case it didn’t work out between us.”
Hermione frowned at those words. That didn’t seem particularly fair to the twins and though her relationship being discussed publicly in the newspapers was exhausting, she wouldn’t have denied the fact if someone asked.
“The point is, dad came in and asked how our girl was. As it was so busy, I didn’t notice his phrasing until I answered that we were all good, before realising what I’d said. But dad only smiled, asked that we bring her for Sunday lunch again that was that. Really, this is no scandal for him, we promise you.”
Hermione took his words in before finally nodding. “Alright, let’s do this and I guess we’ll know who’s in our corner afterwards,” she said with as much resolve as she could, before realising something else. “Why Saturday? Weasley lunches are on Sundays.”
“Saturday is Victoire’s blessing day at the Weasley family magical stones so the whole family is invited,” George explained as he handed her her coffee to finally start on their breakfast.
She sipped it while in thought, already trying to decide what to make for the little girl for such a magical occasion. Maybe a lovely little bracelet that would grow with her, with a sweet little opal charm for a bit of sparkle. Yes, she could see it in her mind’s eyes very clearly, feeling her magic rise a little in response to the challenge.
She felt Fred’s breath on her ear before his soft rumbling words resonated with her. “I don’t know what you’re thinking about but your magic is starting to feel a little too good, so I’m going to shuffle you between us, love.”
His words made her register the press of him against her bum so she cleared her throat as she shuffled to sit properly on the sofa between them, crossing her legs for comfort and to stem the need for more friction. Because as exhausting as it was to think of Molly, this was the closest they’ve been since this whole soulmate thing started, and she was admittedly enjoying the feel of them both surrounding her like this. Yes, this was definitely worth braving the Weasley matriarch.
They landed just outside the Burrow and Hermione took one more deep breath as she steadied the handmade plum tart she brought as a peace offering.
“Sure you’re alright?” George checked in for the third time, his hand on her lower back.
She grit her teeth before trying to shake it off, her jaw set in worried anticipation. “Okay, ground rules. If you ask me that question one more time, I might scream or spontaneously apparate back to my flat. If someone blows a casket, I’m out of here. I will not wreck that little girl’s special day so she can hate me for the rest of her life. And finally, if you abandon me, so help you Merlin you will be very sorry,” she finished and looked straight ahead at the path leading to the garden, the happy laughter of children filtering through.
The two men were silent only for a moment before George coughed to stifle a laugh and Fred looked at her with a grin. “Duly noted. Though it does suit you when you get feisty, just might have to get you worked up more often.”
Her elbow landed with unerring precision under his ribs, forcing a wheezy laugh out of him as George took her hand with a snicker and began leading them down the path to the house.
“Ah there you are! Good to see you boys,” Arthur smiled at them widely and hugged each twin before looking at Hermione. “And Hermione, welcome. We have missed you but I’m sure your time abroad was very exciting,” he smiled warmly and she felt soothed as he greeted her with a kiss to the cheek.
“Thank you, Mr. Weasley. I’m glad to be home and reconnecting with everyone. And thank you for having me today,” she offered a little shily.
“Oh I think we’re well past that, call me Arthur. You are after all part of this family now. Victoire was very excited to see her auntie as well,” he offered her his elbow and she found herself taking it, allowing him to lead her over to the table to set down her offering and towards Bill and Fluer who were sitting at one end of a large table.
She felt the twins at her back as she greeted the couple, but saw them chase after the kids soon after, leaving her in the care of their older brother and his wife. She enjoyed catching up with them both, and even discussed visiting Bill’s new curse-breaking company to do some training for his three colleagues around embedding wards without detection. Victoire however soon demanded her parents’ attention so she slipped away and picked up a glass of wine, taking a larger sip than was perhaps necessary.
She tensed as she felt a presence beside her, the greeting leaving her in no doubt as to who just joined her. “Granger. I can see you finally managed to tame that bird’s nest on your head. Though switching it up for the medusa-look is new.”
“Huh, good to see your tongue is still as sharp as your chin, ferret,” she flipped back, the habitual insults actually making her shoulders relax a bit.
He only grinned and took a sip from his glass. “I wasn’t sure you were going to show up.”
“And why was that, Malfoy,” she asked pointedly.
“I mean, some of the Sunday lunches are manageable, but a two-year old’s blessing party is something else. I think there may have been some glitter in my wine earlier, and it will not live inside my digestive tract forever,” he drawled and she had to suppress her laughter, not quite getting away with her amused grin as she turned to look at him.
He looked well, much different to the skinny scared boy whom she gave testimony for in front of the Wizengamot. He was still tall, but much broader in the shoulders now, his hair cut stylishly and mercury gaze just as piercing as she remembered. “Have you ever thought you’d be part of the Weasley clan?” she asked as she looked out over the garden again, leaning back against the fence behind them casually, hoping it wouldn’t wrinkle her dress.
He snorted. “Me? No. You? Absolutely,” he snickered when she glared at him and raised his hands in mock surrender. “You may think it wasn’t obvious but you’re so hot for red. Always have been. And you know what gave you away?”
“Do enlighten me,” she raised a pointed brow at his audacious claims.
“I caught you counting their freckles under your breath one day,” he nodded to the twins who were helping Victoire pick her next game.
“Oh you did? I thought you were too busy looking at Harry’s arse,” she mused, grinning when she heard him snicker at her audacity.
“Oh please, Potter? He was more annoying than anything, he’s barely tolerable now. Oliver Wood though, that was a universally recognised great arse. Shame he was a sodding Gryffindor, or I would have tried my luck despite the age difference,” he shrugged.
Hermione rolled her eyes to the heavens. Slytherins, honestly. “Your wife and soulmate is a Gryffindor,” she pointed out.
This time it was Draco who turned to look at her incredulously. “Is she though?” he pointed out.
Well, when you think about it Ginny was certainly ferocious and brave but also had a vicious streak and cunning in spades. “Fair, I’ll accept that. How did you find out you’re soulmates anyway?”
He leaned back against the fence beside her with an amused grin. “Accident actually. I was out for the night with Theo and Blaise at Millicent’s new club a couple of years back and we ended up bumping into each other by the bar.”
“Millicent Bullstrode? She owns a club?” her eyebrows couldn’t have been any higher if she tried.
“Much to her family’s horror, yes. She’s also soul bound to Padma Patil, they are the Queens of night life these days. You should check out the club, it’s called the Heist, on Horizon Alley.”
“Huh, you know I can see that working,” Hermione mused as she imagined the two women together - smart business, dedication and beauty. “And how is the new Lady Malfoy?”
Draco grinned at the sight of his wife walking out from the kitchen, looking very healthy and positively glowing in the midday sunlight. “Still playing for the Holyhead Harpies. They got close to winning the cup last year.”
“Oh? Who beat them?” Hermione asked curiously, not usually interested in Quidditch but it felt like there was a story there.
“My team,” he grinned and straightened up away from the fence. “Welcome to the madhouse and the Weasley family outcasts,” he tipped his glass to her and she surprised herself by clinking her glass against his in this new amicable world.
“Thanks for the warm welcome. I have no doubt it cost you effort to not be a prat for five seconds,” she grinned toothily at him, seeing he recognised her sharp smile still after all these years when his gaze narrowed a little. But in the end he merely tipped his head her way before heading off to meet his wife by the table, leaving her once again alone.
Hermione took a sip of her wine, feeling her mood improve somewhat before crashing right back down as Lavender came sidling up to her with a sugary-sweet smile that would put anyone off their lunch. “There you are, mum needs our help in the kitchen, I’ve come to fetch you.”
Gritting her teeth Hermione followed her toward the door to the kitchen, raising her hand to stop the twins who had started for them. If she was going to be forced into a confrontation today, she would have it on her own terms and away from the little girl who was here to celebrate her magic today.
She walked in behind Lavender, instantly noting Molly’s forced nonchalant air as she continued to decorate a truly lovely cake.
“Hello Mrs Weasley, you needed some help?” she asked, going along with the farce.
Molly huffed a little, to which Lavender looked all too pleased as she folded her arms and watched the beginnings of the confrontation. Hermione wasn’t sure what she ever did to the girl, they’d always been chalk and cheese but she wouldn’t actively try to make another woman feel anything less than welcome without good reason.
“I don’t need help, but clearly my boys do, to get away from you,” Molly straightened and looked at her properly, taking in her composed expression.
“I’m afraid that won’t be possible as we are soulmates and our bond is protected under the law,” she countered calmly, trying to reason first.
“Ha, protected by law. You haven’t completed any bonding yet. And how could you possibly form a triad? My boys will each find a girl of their own, a nice girl that will make them happy.”
“I think Fred and George are both clear on what they want and how they would like to share their life with someone. And why couldn’t that be me?” Hermione asked, wondering what she had done to personally offend the formidable matriarch.
“How could it be? You clearly have a taste for famous wizards, even though you haven’t actually managed to lure any of them into marriage so far. My sons are successful business men, of course you would be interested in them,” she sniffed at her. “Not to mention poor Ron, the way you encouraged his affection and then left him heartbroken. Thankfully he found Lavender here to bring him happiness, his true match.”
Hermione was too stunned to speak for a moment before finding her words. “Mrs Weasley, I’ve been friends with Ron and with most of your children while growing up. I have no intentions of hurting anyone, and though our friendship isn’t what it used to be, I never led Ron on about my feelings, and we continued to be friends despite our souls not matching. I am very happy for him and for everyone in your family who has found their happiness with a soulmate and would never dream of jeopardising it,” she said clearly, hurrying on when she saw Molly open her mouth to interrupt.
“As for your other allegations against my character, these have always only ever been vicious rumours. I have respect for the success of the Wheezes but quite frankly I have more capital at my disposal than your sons do, considering my own career path. I don’t want or need their money. I am getting to know your sons as my soulmates before we take the next steps to our lives together. I hope you can come to accept that,” she offered, clearly leaving the ball in Molly’s court to do with as she pleased.
“You-” Molly looked positively livid. “Get out of my house.”
Hermione took a deep breath and stayed her ground. “It’s Victoire’s blessing day. I will not come to your home without invitation after today but I would like to stay for your granddaughter,” she argued, willing to ignore the woman for one day before going back to keeping her distance.
“She barely knows you, she won’t care. You’re being a nuisance,” Lavender responded instead, clearly happy to drive her out as well. When Molly didn’t contradict her, Hermione had her answer.
Hermione took a deep breath before nodding. “Very well.”
Walking out of the kitchen with her head raised was the most difficult thing she had to do but she kept her pace even as she walked over to Fleur. The blonde noted something was going on and leaned in to speak to her quietly, aware that Bill was likely to pick up the quiet words and understand.
“Je suis désolé, je dois partir. J'espère qu'elle aime son cadeau. Je viens bientôt déjeuner?” she murmured.
Fleur looked thunderous but nodded. “D'accord, nous allons le gérer ici,” she promised as she leaned down to kiss her cheek, “ça ira chérie.”
Hermione gathered her purse and found the twins both looking at her with a frown. She shook her head minutely to let them know she wasn’t welcome to stay and headed for the path to the front of the house to get to the apparition point. She waited until she was out of sight of the garden to take a shuddering breath, not expecting them to follow, and conflicted about wishing them to stay for Victoire and coming with her to get away from the toxic matriarch.
And a few moments later she felt two hands on her lower back, grounding her as she was pulled into apparition, her eyes shutting down against the tears of rejection.
The sun had long set and Hermione’s tears had dried in their supportive company. The comfort they provided her was unparalleled and though she could also sense their simmering frustration and anger, she appreciated them staying with her and looking after her for the rest of the afternoon. She didn’t want to rise from the warm cocoon of blankets but forced herself to set the empty cup from her hot chocolate on the table and rubbed a tired hand over her face. “I should get going, otherwise I’ll fall asleep on you here.” She expected them to smile at her but there was only a beat of silence before she felt George’s hand reach for her and lace their fingers.
“Why don’t you stay and sleep with us?” he asked quietly, taking the lead on this conversation as Fred merely squeezed her thigh gently from his place on her other side.
She turned to look at him, teeth gnawing on her bottom lip. “I’m..I don’t think this is the right time..I’m not in the headspace to-”
“Oh, no, not like that,” George hastened to correct her assumption. “Just to sleep. No pressure, no expectation. Just…stay, sleep, we’ll make you breakfast in the morning and we can have a slow Sunday morning together. Merlin knows we all need it after how busy the last few weeks and today have been,” he offered a sleepy smile of his own, clearly in agreement with her that it was time for bed.
“If you’re too uncomfortable or not ready, there’s a guest room for you to take if you’d rather but we would absolutely love to just spend the night with you,” Fred added, his thumb gently swiping over her knee.
She weighed her options but ultimately let her heart and magic decide, and the answer became very clear in her mind. “No, I’d love to stay with you.”
Fred flicked his wand and the cups flew into the sink and blankets folded themselves over the arms of the sofa, ready for the next day. “Why don’t you take the bathroom first and get comfortable. Would you like something to sleep in?” he offered.
She looked down at her cream swing dress and nodded. “Just a t-shirt would do if that’s okay?”
George took her hand and led her to the main bedroom, pointing to the set of drawers which was clearly split in half for their preference. “Second row is t-shirts, feel free to pick whatever is comfortable,” he suggested while opening the large wardrobe on the side, and pulled out a midnight blue satin shirt which he offered to her. “For transfiguration into a scarf or bonnet, or whatever you prefer.”
Touched by the thoughtful gesture, she leaned up on her toes and pressed a kiss to his cheek before finishing her way to the bathroom to get ready for bed. She looked at her puffy eyes in the mirror and summoned her handbag, reaching for the little cosmetic bag she always carried and found the right vial to get her make-up off and soothe the puffiness. Mindful not to take too long, she quickly stripped her dress and tights and shimmied into the loose black t-shirt, feeling it catch a bit on her hips and flicked her wand to enlarge it a bit to make it more comfortable.
The satin shirt was also transfigured, into a large scarf, folded carefully as she flipped her head and gathered her braids, twisting them into a comfortable bun atop her head, wrapping the scarf around carefully until her roots and lengths were both protected. A couple of charms would keep it all set for the night and she gave herself a once over before shrugging and heading back to the bedroom. If they were her soulmates, they better get used to the reality of what she looked like in the morning, during the day, at a fancy date, as well as too tired to even think about looking presentable.
The large bed that dominated the bedroom could easily fit four people and she saw why someone would think it suspicious if they didn’t know the twins well, but she found them both already lounging under the covers, Fred in low-slung trousers, his bare freckled chest making her want to count all the little constellations spilled across his skin, and George in a pair of boxers and t-shirt, his glasses still on his nose as he turned a page in the book he was reading leaned against the headboard. They looked up when she came in and took in the curve of her thick thighs, her bare face and tired expression, before they patted the space between them in invitation.
“Won’t we get too warm?” she asked, not sure she would like either extreme of being too warm or too cold, reminded of freezing nights in a tent which still made her shudder.
“I think she takes us for amateurs, brother mine,” Fred drawled with a sleepy grin.
“Hmm really Hermione, the first thing we did with that hefty spellwork of yours is to weave temperature-regulating charms into our bed sheets,” he winked though she missed it as she crawled over him to the middle, momentarily giving him a full view of her round jiggly arse. Yup, perfect.
She settled between them on the pillow they provided for her and squirmed a little, trying to find a comfortable position. George put away his book and settled down before they noxed the lights and tried to get comfrotable, their magic rising at such close proximity. They lay unmoving for a few minutes, the tension in the air thick enough to cut with a knife.
Finally there was a huff of impatience on her right before she felt a gentle touch on her arm and she felt the puff of Fred’s breath on her cheek. “Turn over love, George makes for an excellent little spoon,” he whispered, the intimate words making her shudder.
Drawing on her bravery, she did just that, turning left to shuffle forward until she reached out and her hand bumped into George’s ribs. He let out a ticklish huff, taking her hand and pressing a fleeting kiss to her palm before turning on his side to let her snuggle into his back. And that she did, finding it surprisingly comfortable as he rested a little on his front and she could lean her cheek and heavy bun against his shoulder blades. Her arm slid around his side and to his chest, smiling when he tangled their fingers across his sternum and relaxed in her embrace.
She felt Fred shifting behind her until another blanket settled across her hip and he snuck under the edge of hers, pressing the length of his body against her back. Not too tight or close, clearly trying not to crowd her, but she wiggled against him in invitation. That was all it took before his hot skin pressed against her clothed back, thigh pressing against hers until their legs tangled, cradling her bum with his hips. He threw an arm over them both, landing somewhere on George’s hip, his elbow resting across her waist comfortably. She’d never fallen asleep like this, but she didn’t even notice when she drifted off, the events of the day and the comfort of the all-encompassing embrace soothing her to sleep.
Waking up in the middle of a Weasley twin sandwich was exactly as incredible as it sounded. She blinked her eyes open slowly, taking in the light filtering in through the window. They’d shifted in the night and she was now stretched out between the two men, her hand on Fred’s chest as he lay on his back and snored softly in deep sleep. His hand was holding onto hers, keeping her in place and her body twisted his way. She could feel George pressing into her back, in more ways than one as she stretched and pressed back against a rather prominent and firm length.
She felt him shift slightly against her, putting it down to an unconscious response before his slightly callused hand gripped her hip to steady them both. Her t-shirt has ridden up in the night and his thumb caressed the line of her knickers and the soft skin above it, his nose nuzzling against her neck in what felt like a very much intentional touch.
“Good morning…” the greeting was mumbled against her skin and she shuddered at the featherlight kiss to her shoulder.
“Good morning to you too,” she whispered back, trying not to disturb Fred from his sleep. “Do you mind if I..?” she motioned her intentions and he pulled back to give her space.
She carefully extricated her hand from Fred’s slack grip and turned around to face the younger twin, taking in his still sleepy hazel eyes, more brown than green today, and the dishevelled state of his short red curls. She’d learnt over the past few weeks that the lighter their eyes turned, the more tired or melancholy they were. Seeing the lazy happiness in his darker gaze was something she knew would make the memory of their first morning together all the more special.
She reached up and gently cupped his cheek, feeling his warm skin, digging her fingers just a little bit into the thicker stubble along his jawline. He closed his eyes and hummed in pleasure as her short burgundy nails dug scratched the itchy skin gently.
“I like waking up here, to you both,” she said softly, feeling his hand return to her hip as he pulled their bodies closer.
The magic between them was rising again and she felt like she could take on the world when he twined their legs and wrapped his arm securely around her back. The clash of their bodies was inevitable after the weeks of taking their time, but still he paused, forehead pressed to hers and surprised her once again. “I know we’re taking time, but….I’ve been wanting to kiss you for weeks now. May I?” he asked hopefully.
Her heart was going to pound out of her chest. This sweet, beautiful man was asking her consent even when she was practically curled around him and clearly wanting. It made her want him even more as she whispered her enthusiastic ‘yes’ and leaned in to kiss his plush lips tenderly.
If there was a word to describe the feeling of kissing George Weasley, it had to be ‘intimate’. Gentle, exploring, his tongue pressed against her bottom lip in query and she opened to him happily as her finger shifted to dig into the short hair at his nape. He was questing, tasting her at his own pace, listening to her every hitched breath to see what felt good, breaking their kiss to nuzzle her nose a moment and place a series of little pecks against her moist lips before deepening their kiss again. For a moment, there was nothing but this embrace, their kiss, their magic pulsing and trying to reach each other, one of its soulmates.
Her breath hitched when a second pair of lips landed on her body, travelling a hot teasing path up her shoulder to her arched neck, making her shudder as Fred nipped her pulsepoint cheekily. George pulled back with a last peck to her lips before encouraging her to turn around, his grip on her hip reassuring that he wasn’t going anywhere either.
She turned to see a sleep-rumpled Fred, his long copper curls up in a top knock, flashing her his most devastating smile. “My turn?” he grinned cheekily as he aligned their bodies closer, his hand on the thick of her thigh where she noted it liked to land. It appeared Fred Weasley was a thigh man, she noted when he squeezed the handful he was holding and pulled her leg higher up on his hip. Noted and stored for later use for sure. Right now, she arched her back until they were chest to chest, and raised a brow at him in a silent challenge she knew he wouldn’t be able to ignore.
If kissing George was wholesome and intimate, kissing Fred Weasley made her lose her bloody mind. He kissed with intent, with a passionate drive she felt herself instantly responding to as he pressed past her lips and their tongues coiled against the other impatiently. She could feel the heat spreading from her lower belly to the very tips of her toes and he groaned softly into her mouth, spurring her to run her hand and nails across his naked back. The twins were two sides of the same coin, identical and yet so different, and it had her core clenching hungrily in desire.
The magic in the air deepend as well, she could almost taste how thick and eager it was as George pressed close against her back, reaching up to caress over her ribs just beneath the swell of her breasts, tantalisingly close yet not where she wanted him to touch. And when Fred’s thigh shifted and pressed firmly against the damp gusset of her knickers, she could only moan encouragingly and grind against the sweet pressure, her body eager and senses heightened by the magic encouraging them to complete their soul bond.
“Alright? Do we need to stop or keep going?” George checked in as they tried to catch their breath while still exchanging kisses, her head twisting around to kiss him again, a bit messy at this angle but still so fulfilling.
Fuck, she really really wanted to come, her body high strung and needful after the emotional turmoil of yesterday, but at the same time she didn’t want to go all the way. They caught onto her hesitation and paused for a moment, giving her some air to decide what she wanted. She watched their gaze meet over her head in silent communication as her breathing calmed a bit, before they refocused on her, encouraging her to share her thoughts with inquisitive touches and George’s lips on her shoulder in quiet support.
“Well…we can…we don’t have to go all the way but we can still…have fun?” she tried to formulate, feeling the answering pulse of eager magic from both sides.
“Sure we can,” Fred grinned mischievously, his fingers pulling gently on the edge of her knickers. “Can I take these off so I can touch you?” he asked, seeing her pupils widen at the direct request, waiting patiently until she nodded, her chin dipping eagerly as she moved to kiss the skin stretched over his collarbone, making him groan in delight as she found one of his sensitive spots.
He wasted no time in flicking his wand to banish her knickers to Merlin knows where, and then shuffled a bit back to give himself space. “Open up for me love,” he encouraged as she reached up to kiss him hungrily, feeling George press a knee between her thighs and eager hands guiding her leg back to hook over his thigh.
She felt exposed and not naked enough at the same time, the t-shirt still covering her top half but the rest of her open to their perusal. George groaned into her neck as his length perfectly aligned and pressed into her round cheeks, rubbing himself against her derriere in a sensual rhythm that only made her more eager for his touch.
“This okay?” he checked in and she nodded enthusiastically, loving the feel of him grinding into her with a firm grip on her hip.
Fred nudged her chin with his nose until she turned back to him and he drew her into a deep kiss, his hands exploring her clothed chest and pinching a pebbled nipple, making her arch eagerly into his touch before he broke off and watched her with dark eyes as his hand travelled a path over her soft belly and to the patch of trimmed coarse curls above her soaking folds.
“So beautiful…can’t wait to seal our bond…have you all laid out for us so we can properly take you and make you come again…and again..” he murmured against her lips, just as his fingers slid across her slit, all the way down to her eager clenching opening and back up to her clit, circling the little nub teasingly.
She wasn’t sure whether it was his wording or the skilled touch, maybe both, but she felt herself climbing high quicker than she normally would, rubbing her hips against his questing fingers and back against the hard length pressing against her arse.
“Fuck, you feel so good Hermione…” George whispered against her ear and trailed a path of nips and kisses over the skin revealed by the loose collar of the t-shirt.
“You too…you feel so so good…but I need….I want you inside…” she hummed, making them both groan as she rubbed back against the younger twin and reached down to grab Fred’s wrist, pushing him lower where she needed him most.
“Hmmm…I love a woman who asks for what she wants,” Fred grinned and carefully slipped a finger inside her, his eyes shuttering at the feel of her tight welcoming heat, giving her a moment to get used to his touch before pulling back and thrusting inside with two of his long fingers this time, wanting to feel her clenching around his touch all the more eagerly.
Hermione let out a sound somewhere between a whimper and a moan at the perfect friction as his fingers hooked into the spongy spot that had her body singing. Trust Fred fucking Weasley to find her back g-spot in seconds and ruin her plans to have enough focus to touch him. She tried anyway, reaching between them to feel his length through the soft plaid trousers, but after a choked groan and thrust into her palm, he pulled her hand away and put it back against her mons.
“I’ll get my turn, right now I want you to show me how you like to touch yourself…” he whispered across her lips as his fingers picked up a steady but purposeful rhythm, feeling her body respond eagerly to his every thrust.
She had to steady herself as her fingers started gliding over the hooded nub in time with his thrusts, ensuring she would be cresting far too soon. Her free hand reached back and she gripped George’s pert arse, encouraging him to rub against her harder, loving the friction against her body as he climbed to his own peak against her.
“I’m getting close…can’t wait to hold you as you come for us..” George panted against her ear with no finesse and all the eagerness to see their peak together. Oh she was in so much trouble if both of them talked like this, she enjoyed it far too much. “Fuck, you feel so good…so good for us..” he groaned into her neck.
She gasped and her body clamped on Fred’s fingers eagerly for a moment at those whispered words, something about the sound of them making her nearly tip over. Morgana, she was so so close, she could feel her muscles growing taut in anticipation.
Fred didn’t miss a beat, feeling the response of her body to George’s words as he pulled back a little and began thrusting his fingers in a rapid rhythm, feeling and hearing just how wet she was growing, her body practically singing for them.
“That’s it, love…want to see you coming for us both…can you do that…can you be a good girl and come for us?” he panted against her lips and fuck if he didn’t feel her absolutely shatter when he called her that, her body squeezing him so tight he thought she would break his fingers. But blessed fucking Merlin, he wanted to feel her coming on his cock like that as he worked her through her orgasm.
George’s deep groan joined her high-pitched cries as he came against her undulating body, having loved every second of the delicious friction of her soft curves. And she was so very wet, a tickle of her orgasm leaking down her slit onto his boxers which were an absolute mess from both of their pleasure and release. He fucking loved every second of it. Hermione turned her head to catch his lips in a quick kiss, before she turned back to Fred who was still hard and straining against his trousers as he looked at her like she was a goddess.
She reached down and gently pushed his fingers out, feeling empty but still quivering as she swung her leg forward over his hip and pushed him down into the mattress, sitting astride his still clothed hips. Quick fingers took down the satin scarf from her head and shook out her braids as she settled more firmly atop him, her sensitive folds pressing perfectly across the length of his hard cock through the thin material separating them.
That didn’t stop him from feeling just how hot and wet she was, the fabric soaked in seconds from his precum and her soaking folds. And by the Gods, she was an absolute vision atop him, a beautiful soft goddess with thighs that tightened around him until they squeezed his hips in a way that was both comforting and hot as hell. He was so hard, so ready to come that it only took a few thrusts of her hips against him to have him coming in his trousers like a bloody teenager.
Hermione climbed off him and in between them, laying down to stretch out her satisfied body. She could have gone again and by the way both of them looked at her, they could go all the way and consummate this soul bond right on the spot. But she was looking forward to discovering what they liked as they worked up to a full bonding, and this first, slightly messy and entirely too hot morning was just perfect in its own way.
George thankfully reached for his wand and cleaned up the mess from the sheets and each of their bodies, sighing contentedly when the uncomfortable sticky mess vanished and he could press up against Hermione’s luscious body again. “When I said good morning, I didn’t know just how good it would be,” he mumbled lazily, grinning at their chuckles.
“Good seems to be the operative word for sure,” Fred grinned as his eyes sparkled with mischief, reminding her just how much she enjoyed him calling her a good girl.
“You watch that filthy mouth of yours, Fred Weasley, or next time I’ll have to sit on it to shut you up,” she threatened with an answering grin.
Fred groaned at the thought of such a thing, his head surrounded by those perfect fucking thighs as he got to taste her. He had to press the heels of his hands to his eyes to try and stem the twitch of arousal at the visual. “Bloody hell, you’re killing me love. I would really rather not have to wank in the shower as well.”
She just chuckled and leaned up to give him a deep sensual kiss, softer than their initial clash, but full of promise for more of that. Turning back to George, she cupped his cheek and pulled him into a more tender kiss as he twirled one of the braids that fell around them like a curtain, just two two of them in the world for a breath. “A very good morning indeed,” she hummed and pecked his cheek again before climbing over his body and heading for the bathroom, giving them both a perfect view of her bum before reaching down and pulling the t-shirt over her head just before turning the corner to the bathroom.
“She’ll be the death of us,” Fred groaned and looked at his brother across the space between them.
“Yeah, but what a way to go,” George grinned and they both got up. “I’ll tidy up here.”
“And I’ll start on breakfast. Crêpes or toast?”
“Crêpes!” Hermione poked her head around the corner with a wink and summoned her cosmetic bag wandlessly, the happy pulse of magic in the room making them all grin stupidly at each other before she disappeared again.
“You heard the lady,” George shooed him out and smiled as he worked on stripping the sheets and putting on his favourite blue set instead.
He couldn’t wait until this was their life every day, because if there was one thing he didn’t doubt, it was that Hermione was the perfect mate for them both, no matter what their family said.
“Ready?” Fred asked as she quickly slipped into her ankle boots and wrapped her long knit jumper around her shoulders against the autumnal wind that had finally arrived on the tail of a lovely sunny summer a few days ago.
“The flowers!” she exclaimed, nearly forgetting them and the vase in the kitchen. She summoned them and cast a spell to keep the water in without splashing during the travel. “Okay, ready,” she allowed herself to be pulled between them and closed her eyes for the side-along apparition, just outside the St.Mungo’s admissions.
They walked to the visitors’ entrance and got the number for Fleur’s room before heading up the stairs to the correct floor. Her first pregnancy had been difficult but giving birth to Victoire had been surprisingly easy and both mum and baby were well afterwards. It was usual for witches to give birth at home with a midwife and only transfer to the hospital if there were serious issues, and Fleur had enjoyed the comfort of her home as they bonded with Victoire as a family.
Hermione was aware that the blonde had been uneasy, her second pregnancy barely any trouble, nausea perfectly manageable and brief. It made her fearful of the birth, and it appeared her intuition had been spot on. Bill floo-called an hour ago to let them know they were finally awake and that most of the family had already left, giving them a chance to come through and spend some time with them uninterrupted.
They knocked gently on the door and waited to be invited in by a tired-looking Bill. Hermione gave him a quick hug before moving to the bed, smiling at a pale Fleur who was cradling a sleeping little bundle in her arms.
“Hey,” she leaned down and pressed a kiss to her clammy cheek, glad to see a smile on her friend’s face at the sight of her favourite flowers. Hermione spotted a couple of bouquets of roses and cards, but no wildflowers as Fleur preferred. So she set the vase with the bouquet on the empty bedside table so she could reach them from the bed. “How are you both?”
“Tired,” Fleur didn’t even know what else to say at that point, grimacing a little as she shifted to get more comfortable against the pile of pillows.
“Do you need me to get anyone for more pain potions?” Hermione adjusted the sheet around her, noticing she was bleeding through onto the white linen. She looked up and took out her wand, asking permission to help clean the blonde up with a gentle spell.
Fleur nodded and winced a little even at the gentle tingle of magic, allowing her friend to tuck her in more comfortably while the Weasley men spoke quietly by the door. “Merci. I can’t have anything else at the moment, they’re waiting for the repairing potions to finish working and knit everything back together. I had some tearing and internal bleeding. Pain potions would interfere with the dittany,” she explained.
Hermione nodded and poured her some water, helping her drink some as she perched carefully on the edge of the bed by Fleur’s hip. “Let me know if I can do anything for you.”
Fleur nodded and shifted the sleeping bundle in her arms. “I will. Right now, I would like you to meet your goddaughter, if you’ll have her,” she smiled softly at the expression of awe on Hermione’s features.
“Me? Her godmother, are- are you sure?” she asked, not expecting such an honour. Victoire’s godmother was Fleur’s sister Gabrielle, and Hermione assumed it would be Ginny’s turn for this little one.
“Absolument, we’re family now as well as friends. And I know your practice is dedicated to our lady Hecate, my own patron,” Fleur smiled and passed the little baby to Hermione who held her carefully.
“I..would be honoured,” she managed around the emotion closing her throat. She looked down into the sweet pink face of the little girl that would be her goddaughter and smiled brightly. “She’s so beautiful. A bit squished and pink but perfect,” she smiled, making Fleur chuckle in amusement. “Do you have a name yet?”
Fleur nodded and reached up to caress her daughter’s soft head. “Dominique, born and blessed by the Gods.”
“Bonjour Dominique, bienvenue dans le monde,” Hermione greeted her properly. “One of these lovely little honeysuckle flowers is for you, I hope you like them,” she cooed at the little one.
Born under the sign of Virgo just like Hermione, this little girl would be blessed with bluntness, and likely become self-sufficient, ambitious, perfectionist and loyal. Victoire was already a force of nature at two years old, and Hermione had no doubt this little lady wouldn’t be any different. She couldn’t wait to watch her grow up and was gratefully more and more each day to have returned, met her soulmates and got to be a regular part of the lives of people such as Bill and Fleur and their growing family.
She felt the twins at her back as Bill came to stand on the other side of Fleur’s bed, clearly still hovering a bit worriedly.
“Let’s see if this one also inherited her mother’s beauty,” Fred smiled at Fleur and rested his chin on Hermione’s shoulder to have a look. “Yup, thank Merlin, she avoided Bill’s ugly mug as well! Congratulations on winning the genetic lottery, little one,” he grinned as Bill scoffed at his words and Fleur suppressed a laugh.
“But little Dominique here will be a Weasley through and through,” Hermione pushed aside the little hat to reveal a full head of dark coppery hair.
George rested his chin on her other shoulder and beamed at the little one. “She looks just like Nana Prewett, don’t you think? The arch of her brow and her little button nose,” he pointed out.
Bill grinned proudly. “Yup, Dad already said so as well. He looked a bit nervous,” he snickered, as he was the only one to remember the hurricane that was Nana Prewett and the fear of the Gods she instilled in his dad as his mother-in-law.
“She sounds like a formidable woman,” Hermione smiled down at the little girl in her arms, feeling magic swell in her chest as she looked at the little girl. Trusting her instincts, she spoke the words that came to her so easily. “Then as your godmother, I call for you to receive blessings of beauty from the Graces, talent for magic from our lady Hecate, and most of all plenty of fortitude that will carry you through all stages of your life. So mote it be,” she whispered, her powerful magic humming in the air.
Fleur squeezed Bill’s hand on her shoulder, eyes misty with emotion as she watched her daughter receive blessings unlike very few magical children get from their godparents. She could tell from the pulse of Hermione’s magic that she was guided by the Goddess herself when she spoke her blessing, and felt privileged to have such a powerful godmother for her second daughter.
“Thank you, Hermione. Your blessings are most welcome,” Bill spoke softly, giving the magic a moment to settle.
Hermione nodded and passed the little girl back to her mother before she started fussing, likely getting hungry again. “I look forward to being here for her. On another note, when do you think they’ll let you go home?”
“The healers said we’ll be good to go in a couple of days or so. Charlie is staying with us while he finds his own flat, and is helping to look after Victoire as well.”
“Would it be alright if we stopped by? I was going to get some small flowers for Victoire as well, as she’s now become a big sister,” Hermione asked, not wanting to overstep.
“Oh please do, Charlie will have someone else to discuss his research with. It’s fascinating stuff, you’ll love it,” Bill chuckled.
“Perfect,” Hermione beamed and took Fleur’s hand once more gently. “Congratulations to you both again. We’ll leave you to rest now but please let us know if you need anything else.”
“Oui, et merci pour les bénédictions,” Fleur squeezed her hand before letting the twins kiss her cheek each and they headed back out of the hospital.
Now that the cat was out of the bag about their relationship, she didn’t hesitate to take George’s hand as she looped her other hand through Fred’s elbow. “I’m so happy they’re alright,” she sighed.
“You’re amazing, did you know?” George squeezed her hand with an enchanted smile.
“I have my moments,” she admitted, still feeling the tingle of the Goddess’ magic at her fingertips. “And I’m also starving. Can we go for lunch?” she asked hopefully.
“How does pasta sound?” Fred grinned, having a place in mind.
“Like I would give an arm and leg for delicious carby goodness right now,” she admitted.
“Say no more, milady, and hold on,” he grinned and they disapparated on the spot with a quick twist.
She put the finishing touches on the beautiful detailing, her wand hand trembling a little with the strain. She’d worked practically nonstop on these for the past week, until they were crafted just as she wanted them, layering a pattern of spells that were the finest craft she’d done so far. And she was hoping the evening would go as she was imagining it would.
She has been sure about the next steps for the past two weeks, especially after the surprise they prepared for her birthday at the end of September. She had booked the day off anyway as this year her birthday fell on a Friday so she made a long weekend out of it. With no expectations other than a trip to her favourite bookshops around London and a brunch at her usual little cafe in Soho, she came back home around 2pm, only to find an envelope waiting for her on the table. It contained a portkey with a magical password, and a little note that suggested she should pack some warm waterproofs and good walking boots.
What followed was a magical weekend, two nights at a chalet in the Austrian Alps with gorgeous hikes, cheese boards and evening board games, before travelling back to change for a small celebration at the Shell Cottage with Bill and his family, Charlie, her Slytherin friends, and a delighted Neville who gifted her a stunning periwinkle orchid. It was a weekend to remember, and though there were no overt romantic gestures or overtures, the thoughtfulness in their planning and the intimacy of their evenings together at the chalet were so precious to her. They knew her, they’d seen her at a low, and they celebrated her successes.
And she was utterly enchanted. By their skill, their dedication and creativity in their work. By George’s perspective and the way he always engaged her in conversation, his quiet confidence but careful consideration of her, and the way he made her tea just right. By Fred’s teasing grin, his tingling wandless magic, and even his slightly vicious streak when dealing with someone who upset the people he cared for.
Of course it wasn’t all roses. George was easily as stubborn as she was and the one time they disagreed, he held out to the next day until they met for an apology coffee. But he was open to a dialogue, and he wasn’t afraid to admit when he was wrong, and that she could appreciate. Fred was impulsive in a way that might seem childish to some, and it came to the forefront when he slipped one of their bubblegums in with hers. Thankfully she was still at home when she popped it into her mouth, just about to leave as she found herself with her mouth glued shut by one of their Gummy Gums. It was rather unfortunate as she was due to visit with Theo but she managed a non-verbal spell after about an hour to counter the effect. She had been furious and her own vicious nature kicked in at the blatant disregard for her wish not to be spiked or tested on. So the next evening she was at their home, she quietly slipped a potion into his shampoo and watched as his cared-for long curls all fell out in favour of a bold head. He was utterly wrecked over it and it took him two days to seek her out, confess, apologise and beg her to counteract the blasted thing. He finally agreed never to use any of their products on her but she was still on her guard nonetheless.
She knew they might seem as minor things to some, but she was learning about how they behaved in a conflict as well as on a good day, and to her it was invaluable. The bond was practically shoving them into bonding every time they were close together and though they ended up making out and coming together a few more times since, they had been careful not to consummate the bond just yet. It was her call, and after three months months, she was ready. Ready to feel their magic and bond settle, ready to really start her life with them and focus on her shop instead of the longing in her chest, and most of all ready to love them.
Were there still things to sort out? Of course. Her non-existent relationship with half of their family was still very much an issue, but truthfully, those who mattered to her were supportive of them. And while she hadn’t really heard from Ron or Harry at all, her supposed friends, she had plenty of other friends who loved her for who she was and respected her choices.
So here she was, glad to be locking up the shop after another long Sunday and looking forward to having the day off with her men tomorrow after a productive weekend. She could only hope they will be happy to stay in bed most of the day tomorrow if tonight went well. After adding a lovely maroon bow to each box, Hermione slipped them into her handbag and locked up her shop, warding it before heading towards the side steps on the shop and up to their flat.
She knocked but since there was no response, she set her hand against the door and the wards welcomed her as she slipped into the empty room. They’d added her to their wards a couple of weeks ago and so far she hadn’t used that privilege to just let herself in. But since they were still wrapping up downstairs, she kicked off her boots and made her way to the kitchen, starting on dinner from what she could find in the cooling cabinet. A few minutes later, she had the pasta boiling and the basis for a puttanesca sauce while she sliced bread and slathered on garlic butter before chucking it in the oven. There was also an open bottle of red she poured out for them to enjoy into the small glasses they preferred. She felt comfortable as she drained the spaghetti and mixed everything together, humming to herself as she opened the cabinet for some plates.
“Hmmmm delicious,” the greeting came from behind her and she recognised the pleased grin in Fred’s slightly lighter voice.
“It sure is, brother mine,” George sounded a little bit closer, clearly moving into the kitchen to help.
“I thought it smelled nice, hope it tastes just as good,” she turned to smile at them but Fred’s intent hazel gaze was focused on her arse in the stretchy burgundy pencil skirt she had worn to work. “That’s not dinner,” she chuckled.
“It could be,” he grinned toothily and she tossed the kitchen towel at him, which he caught easily with quidditch-honed reflexes.
George pressed against her back and reached around her generous hips to pick up two of the plates, winking at her when she turned her head to look at him in question. “Just helping, since you’re not on the menu for now.”
She turned and leaned back against the counter, arms crossed over her chest as she observed them both. They were clearly in a buoyant mood despite the long week they’d all had. “You know, I have plans for this evening but if you keep pushing me, I’ll have to reconsider,” she hummed, pretending to contemplate her options.
The twins exchanged a look before Fred lifted a hand to his lips and mimed zipping them up.
“We can’t help it, we’re irresistible,” George pointed out.
“I am well aware, but it won’t help you tonight,” she tapped her foot on the ground impatiently. “I want to hear the three words,” she said pointedly.
“We love you?” Fred grinned, gaze twinkling to let her know they were teasing.
She snorted. She didn’t appreciate him using those particular words to get his way, they haven’t even said them seriously yet. “That’s sweet, but try again.”
George sighed and they both raised a hand each this time to make the vow. “We will behave,” they said in unison.
She nodded and joined them at the table, hiding a smile as they pulled out her chair and helped her sit down before taking a seat on either side of her, surrounding her with their presence and warm magic. They tucked into their meal, and Hermione only felt the resolve to proceed with tonight as she planned strengthen, as she relaxed into their evening catch up about their day. They complimented her pasta, she topped up their wine, and brought over the crispy garlic bread, chuckling when they teased her about getting them all to eat garlic on date night.
When the food was all gone and a few hefty breath-freshening charms were cast so they could enjoy their dessert, Hermione sat back, smiling when she felt a hand on her thigh, looking to see George smiling at her softly, just reaching out for some contact in the familiar way of his.
“I have something for you both,” she admitted and flicked her wrist, summoning the two square boxes she’d prepared so carefully earlier. She made sure she handed them each the correct one and sat back, motioning for them to go ahead and open them.
The twins exchanged a look and as one unwound the ribbons before lifting the lids on their boxes, sitting back when the magic imbued in the beautiful pieces inside startled them. They each found a bracelet, similar, though not the same. George gently picked up the yellow gold torque bangle, similar to hers, but carved beautifully with a winding pattern, ending on two flat bits set with bright amber stones, the inside band carved with runes for protection, good health, and love. He felt the magic pulsing from the bangle and slid it onto his wrist, feeling it settle comfortably against his skin and warm instantly, a wash of protective magic tingling down his spine. There must be at least a dozen spells layered into the metal and he realised the feeling in his chest was only growing. He felt cherished, and his gaze snapped to her, watching her with surprise because he realised in that moment what this was. It was a declaration of love. Clearm, loud, and so very thoughtful he reached for her hand, squeezing it tightly. She was choosing them, really choosing them both.
He looked over at his brother and noted with a smile that while she’d used his favourite stones and kept his bracelet on the smaller side, Fred’s was flatter, wider, almost like a cuff. There was no stone set in the metal but the incredible fine detail of vines and runes running across the surface was absolutely stunning. It was made of yellow gold as well, suiting his still slightly tan freckled skin as he slid it onto his wrist and shuddered, feeling the layering of spells as George had a moment ago.
“This is…it must have taken you a while to make these. The magic is unlike anything I’ve known,” Fred said softly, for once all humour gone from his voice as he regarded her with sparkling hazel eyes.
“Two weeks,” she nodded. “I wanted them to be perfect and last you a lifetime. The metal is durable, the charms will last decades and they will never tarnish while they continue to protect you,” the words just tumbled out, realising she was rambling but she couldn’t stop herself, wondering whether she was being silly all of a sudden. “I wanted to make you something special, something just for you that was yours from me. I-”
Her words were cut off as Fred leaned forward and took her lips in a firm kiss that stole her breath and whatever words that were on the tip of her tongue.
She blinked her eyes open as he pulled away, not far but just enough for her to see his earnest adoration as he smiled at her. “Thank you, I don’t think I’ve ever received a more thoughtful gift.”
George’s hand on her thigh tightened as he leaned in closer and caught her chin between his fingers, guiding her into a languid kiss before pulling away with a final nip to her bottom lip. “Thank you, Hermione. It really is beautiful. I look forward to wearing it from tonight onwards, as a symbol of our soulbond.”
She released a breath she didn’t realise she was holding before nodding, her gaze shifting between them both. “A soulbond I would like to complete. Tonight,” she whispered.
George who had suspected as such only smiled, while Fred’s gaze sharpened and he took in her features to make sure she was absolutely certain about this choice. She reached for him and he gripped her hand tightly, thumb rubbing over her wrist just beneath the scar spelling up an ugly slur.
“I’m ready to have a full bond with my soulmates. But only if you are as well,” she realised they might not be.
Fred snorted before he could help himself and George’s eyes twinkled with amusement as he squeezed her hand gently. “Honestly, Hermione, we’ve been yours barely weeks in. We knew you were it for us and I can’t wait to complete this bond with you.”
Fred nodded. “Neither can I. So I think we should skip the dessert and move this to the bedroom, because as lovely as the thought of spreading you across this table for a meal is, I’d rather get comfortable.”
Hermione shook her head at his teasing bluntness but kept a hold of their hand each as they made their way to the bedroom, excitement tingling down her spine as she felt her magic responding with eagerness.
A soft whine of impatience tore from her throat as George’s teeth scraped her neck, making her blood rush faster through her veins. She had wanted to take her time, explore them both thoroughly with her lips and tongue, but her body was eager and wanting. George was the patient sort but she could feel eagerness even in his touch. His callused hands felt incredible as they cupped her breasts, pinching her peaked nipples and sending her spine arching into the dextrous touch.
She didn’t even have enough time to feel self-conscious about laying on top of him, back against his chest and pressing him into the mattress with her stretched out body, his presence beneath her comforting and his touch exquisite. He had felt incredible inside her as well, both of them groaning deeply when he first slid inside her, but his hips had pulled away, leaving her empty and needful and yet squirming with the new sensation elicited by Fred’s clever fingers.
He’d already proven to her that he had no shame, and the way he’d licked her tailbone to clit just moments ago was still making her shudder atop his twin’s prone form. The growing bond magic lit every single nerve in her body, and a soft cry of pleasure was torn from her throat as she felt Fred’s hot breath across the little bundle of nerves once more as a second slick finger joined the first one already stretching her puckered opening. She’d been taken like this a total of one time, and though she had enjoyed it, this was very new, and feeling them both at the same time made her equally hesitant and eager. She took a deep steady breath and pulled her knees up a little bit higher, leaning into the touch rather than pulling away from the questing fingers.
Fred took his time, stretching her a little more until he was satisfied she could take them comfortably before nodding to George who was ready. He poured some more oil over George’s length, wanting to make sure their connection was as smooth as possible, and helped his brother align their lips. He sat back on his heels, unable to take his eyes off the beautifully erotic sight of the turgid head pressing against Hermion’s stretched opening before slowly sinking in, inch by inch until George was as far in as the angle would allow.
Hermione was holding onto her thighs with trembling fingers, exhaling shakily as the dull ache of the entry made way for soft throbbing pleasure. She relished the hint of pain, something she’d learned early was to her taste in small doses, and willed her clenching muscles to relax slowly as she lowered her hips another inch or so, getting seated a bit more comfortably. George’s hands gripped onto her hips tightly, grounding himself on her generous soft flesh as he felt her plush arse press against his loins. She was fucking perfect against him like this, so very hot and slick for them.
“Ready, love?” Fred leaned forward and kissed her calf as he rested her ankle against his shoulder.
She lifted her head to nod and he found the slight double chin on her adorable from this angle. He wanted to nibble it but wasn’t sure would welcome such a touch just yet. “Please..I need-” she groaned as her magic pulsed and twined with theirs eagerly, the energy in the room shifting, so close to joining them all.
Fred shuffled George’s legs a bit closer together as he straddled his thighs to get within reach of the beautiful glistening folds just beginning for him to slide between. “Alright. Tell us to stop at any point if it gets too much,” he held onto her calves firmly as George held her hips steady and began inching inside her sopping quim, groaning at the feel of his twin inside her through the thin barrier.
“Fuck- so full,” she gritted her teeth, reaching down to hold onto a forearm each to signal for them to give her a moment.
She was full and stretched beyond her wildest imagination, and she was aching with the unused muscles being challenged so much, and her body demanding pleasure as she was so tightly wound up from the delicious friction. Gods, she was going to come in no time at all from the heady magic swirling around them and their bodies surrounding her and filling her so perfectly.
After a few deep breaths she leaned her head back against George’s chest and nodded. “Move…please..”
Fred was the first to pull back a little and thrust back in gently to set a rhythm between them. She was jolted against George's form with each thrust as far as Fred's grip on her thighs would allow before she felt an answering thrust from George as well. It took them a few tries to find what felt right, but soon they had their stride and began thrusting in and out of Hermione's body in turn, tugging her in both directions and making her nearly lose her mind with pleasure. The initial dull ache of George’s entry had soon lessened, making her gasp as he slipped free on one of the upstrokes, momentarily forcing her body to clench around the empty feeling.
Fred hissed as the pull of her muscles and stilled her as Geroge reached down and found the place he needed to join them, sliding back inside the stretched opening eagerly to get back to their rhythm.
And she was once agains hurtling towards the peak that was making her body tense. It took Fred pulling on her thighs to spread them a little bit wider and pushing her cheeks more tightly together around George’s length for the angle to shift just a little bit, and she cried out as their firm deep thrusts met her sensitive spot.
“I’m…I’m gonna…I need to…” she whimpered as she got stuck so close to the peak, ready to tumble over the edge, just needing a little bit, something-”
Fred licked one of his thumbs and pressed it down against her hooded clit, quickly swiping the digit in small circles as he felt her flutter around him again. And that was all it took. She shattered in their arms, her clenching, shuddering body pulling George over the edge as he spilled deep inside her with a final groan, his arm coming around her chest to hold her close into him. Fred was very close himself, watching her flushed cheeks, her parted lips as she took great gulps of air in after the overwhelming orgasm. And when she opened her eyes to look at him, he lost it and thrust into her once more before also spilling deep inside her.
The magic around them swirled wildly and they arched as the pressure of the bond intensified until their hearts and souls were fully connected, bonded for the rest of their lives. Taking a moment to just breathe, George gently separated their bodies and encouraged her to stretch out her shaking legs as Fred hopped into the bathroom for a soothing balm to help with recovery from such an intense bonding.
A few moments later they were clean and settled for the night, her body aching sweetly as she stretched out on the cool sheets between their bodies. She was bonded to her soulmate, her mind and heart were jubilant and somewhat she could feel them, their contentment and joy alongside hers.
George pressed a featherlight kiss to her forehead, as she curled up on her side facing him for a change from having her back to him so often. “How are you feeling?”
A soft smile quirked her lips. “Like a soulbound woman.”
Fred snorted and trailed a path of kisses over her shoulders, his teeth scraping her spine teasingly, making her shudder at the intimate touch. “Still happy about that?” his voice was teasing but something about the way he held her close told her he was serious.
“Absolutely,” she promised, reaching up to kiss George’s nose before turning her head for a quick peck to Fred’s waiting lips. “Now, I need some sleep before you decide to have your wicked way with me again. And there better be a bloody pain potion in the bathroom when I wake up,” she hummed, already feeling the pull of sleep.
“Anything for you, love,” George hummed and she felt them settle around her, helping her drift off easily into a deep sleep.
The following week was busy as they worked on their bond to settle the powerful magic and discussed living arrangements, now that the bond demanded they live together beyond the occasional sleepover. And when Hermione set the beautiful glass display case with their three locks and keys onto the mantle above their fireplace, she smiled fondly. Each key was sitting inside a lock, unlocking their souls to the power of the bond between them. She remembered the cold dread and resignation, fearing she was her own soulmate since she couldn’t find an explanation for having both the tattoos.
Today, she was loved, cherished, and bonded to two wonderful men she was looking forward to spending the rest of her life with, hopefully with plenty of laughter filling their days.