Disclaimer: If you haven't figured out yet that
Rowling owns Harry Potter and all associated ideas, places, and
then my saying it probably won't help you much, but I will anyway:
Rowling owns Harry, Ron, Hermione, and anyone else you recognize. I
the plot and all those characters who you say "Who the heck is
when they enter the storyline. For the record- Delia Smith is
a British cooking show host, but I didn't know that when I came up
the name, so dont sue me, please!
~ Chapter 1 ~
Rinnng! Rinnng! "Hello?" Hermione Granger snatched
the telephone in her London flat, having just done the jump out of
shower- grab a towel- and sprint across apartment dash.
"Hey, Hermione? This is Lynn." Oh, Lynn. Hermione
a little disappointed. She knew the telephone was a muggle device,
she was hoping the call would be from one of her wizarding friends.
all, didnt Mr. Weasley use them sometimes? Lynn had been a
from school before Hermoine had gone to Hogwarts, and they had
into each other a couple months ago and promised to stay in touch.
had forgotten; a couple of months ago her mind had been occupied
more important things
but obviously Lynn hadnt.
"Lynn! Hi! Its good to hear from you." She
" Thanks. Hermione, Ill get straight to the
I need a favor, and if you do this Ill be eternally
"Eternally, huh? What can I do?" She smiled a little
"Well, my fiancé, you know, Kevin
for Hermione to acknowledge that she did indeed know
" Well, he has this coworker, a guy named David
and I got the job of setting him up with someone,"
"Uh-oh. I can see where this is going." Hermione
but Lynn plowed ahead.
" But the thing is, see, you and he would really be
for each other. That was my thought when I first met
"When was that, pray tell?"
"Two weeks ago. Please, Hermione, youve got to
me out. Just go out to dinner with the guy and then go home early,
Hermione cut her off, "Why do you have the job of
"Oh, I was hoping you wouldnt ask that.
the weddings in four months, right?"
" Hermione said slowly, unable to see
train of thought her friend had picked up.
" Well, he isnt seeing anyone and he
have a date- so we have to find one for him."
"Youre kidding." Hermione said, incredulously,
doesnt he just go alone? Or bring a cousin or
"Kevin feels sorry for him, and Ive never
him mention any family members. Please Hermione?"
"Oh, okay. Just call me sometime this week and let
know when hell pick me up." Hermione answered thinking,
cant be that bad. At least itll help me get back into
swing of dating.
"Oh, God Bless You, Hermione Granger! Thanks so
Hermione laughed at her friends enthusiasm and
at the clock on her wall. "Oh my! Lynn, Ive got to go-
going to be late for a lunch appointment."
"A date?" Lynn asked mischievously.
"No. Im just meeting one of my best friends
school at the pub. Not exactly five star dining." Hermione smiled,
of the Leaky Cauldron. She doubted that old Tom, its proprietor,
know what five star dining meant.
"Okay. Well, I dont want to make you late.
"Bye, Lynn." Hermione replied and hung up. She then
to race back into her bedroom and yank clothes out of the closet,
Lunch with Harry at the Leaky cauldron- not fancy, but look nice-
decided and pulled on a pair of jeans and a pale blue, cashmere
She slid into a pair of brown, toeless, backless, shoes that matched
hair, which she dried with a flick of her wand, grabbed her purse
headed out the door. When she got to the busy street below she
two blocks over to Charing Cross Road, down the street, and into the
She checked her watch- only ten minutes late. Then she spotted
sitting on a barstool, sipping butterbeer, and conversing easily
Tom, who was behind the bar.
She walked over to them and said, "Butterbeer before
oclock in the afternoon. Im surprised at you Harry
He turned and grinned at her, giving her a peck on the
"Its good to see you Mione."
"You, too." She said giving him a hug.
"What can I get you, Ms. Granger?" Tom
"Oh, what the hell. How about one of those." She
Harrys glass. Tom drew the pint and handed it
"Bad day?" Harry asked as they walked over to a
and sat down.
"Oh, I dont know. I got set up on a blind
Harry raised his eyebrows. " When are you
"I dont know."
"I forgot his name." He laughed.
"And youre doing this why?"
"To help out a friend. And I figured this would be a
way to get back into dating, after, you know." He nodded. "Anyway,
guys a muggle, so I wont have to answer questions about
or explain what happened with Ron and I." They placed their orders
sat quietly for a minute.
"Whats he do?" Harry asked,
"He works with the fiancé of one of my old
friends- from before Hogwarts. I think hes an accountant or
"Now theres an exciting job!" Harry
"Be quiet. I have to suffer through an entire meal
this guy, and from all accounts hes a real loser. Lynn said
be perfect for each other." Harry burst out laughing at this.
"Hermione, Ive known you for quite awhile now,
trust me- you are not the boring, muggle accountant type. Whoever
you are, doesnt know you very well."
She smiled at him, "Well, Lynn and I really
been close for thirteen years. Since we were ten. Maybe I was the
muggle accountant type then."
Harry smiled back, "Somehow I doubt it." Tom brought
food over and they began to eat.
"Well, whatever. Hows Ron?" She asked, deftly
"Definitely not a boring, muggle
"Shut-up. You know what I meant."
"Yeah, I know what you meant. Hes okay. Still
"Mine or Rons?"
"Well, as for me, the wonderful world of being an
still offers 24/7 risk of fatal injuries and little to no dental
but I still love it."
"Thats good." He nodded.
"And as for Ron, well hes doing quite well as
enforcer with the Magical Law Enforcement Squad. Fighting crime- he
to haul in people like Draco Malfoy for a living. He loves
"So do you."
"So do I what?"
"Get to haul in people like Draco Malfoy for a
"Not exactly- I deal more with people like old
Dracos only really quasi-evil, trained by his father in the
Arts but to lazy to do anything about it. Sure he breaks laws to
but only really for the fun of it. Lucius and all the other loose
floating around though, theyre different. With Ron and I
like the difference between the police and the FBI- they take the
or double murder cases and everything down from that- we take the
operators, the ones out for world domination and other crap like
"So Ron works on murders and stuff?" Hermione asked,
trace of worry in her voice.
"Yeah- Rons at the top of his field as an
Hes climbed the ladder quickly, cause hes good-
Hermione did not seem pleased to hear this. "That
him in a lot more danger doesnt it?" She asked, concern
in her voice.
"Yes, but Rons a professional, Mione. He
what hes doing." Harry answered, polishing off his meal.
had already finished her salad, so they paid and got up.
"Do you want to go for some ice-cream?" Harry asked.
"Sure. I havent been to Florean
in way too long." She answered. They went out the back door and
Harry could tap the appropriate brick, Hermione said, "Wait!" And
her jeans and sweater into long pale blue robes, exactly the color
sweater had been.
"Oh yeah." Harry grinned at her, "I forgot you were
"Its better than having people stare at me
I walk the three blocks from home to the Leaky Cauldron." She
"I always change when I get to work."
"Hows it going at the Prophet?" Harry
tapping the brick and waiting for the archway to open.
"Great! I did an interview with Minister Weasley
a week ago for yesterdays paper."
"I read it." Harry cut in as they walked down the
winding street. "Was Percy really that boring, or did you do that on
"Hey!" She whacked him, playfully. " I cant
it if my subject matter is as dull as stale bread, but I tried to
it as interesting as possible. The sad thing is that Percy really
a bad Minister of Magic, hes just a really bad people person.
I wonder how Penny stands him."
"I guess she loves him." Harry answered. "Have you
any of the other Weasleys lately?"
"Just Ginny. She popped by the Prophet a
days ago with an add about her latest fashion show and came to my
to say hi."
"I didnt even know she was back from Paris.
have to go see her. Shes probably staying with Ron." Hermione
"Thats what she told me. And she also said
she was heading down to The Burrow for two days and then up to
to see the twins before she goes to Milan." They had reached the
parlor by now and were sitting outside slurping two large
"Wow. Who would have thought that designer
by Virginia would be such a hit?"
"Well, shes unique. No one else has ever done
and she does it well. She gives wizards and witches the option to be
without wearing muggle clothing, and shes fantastic at it."
"Point taken. But," Harry said, "its hard to
she lives in London, because shes always somewhere else. I
Hermione smiled at him. "Hmmm. Is there something I
know about here?"
"Not yet." Harry said glumly, "But if shell
still long enough to let something develop, youll be the first
know." She grinned. Just then a voice called across the square to
from Flourish and Blotts.
"Harry! Hermione!" They looked up to see a figure
towards them, carrying arm loads of shopping bags. Harry and
stood up as Ginny Weasley reached their table, breathless. She was
robes of the deepest indigo blue with a hood that she left down for
"Gin!" said Harry, scooping her up into a hug. " We
just talking about you. I didnt even know you were back in
till Hermione told me."
"Yeah, but not for long."
"Thats what I said." Hermione answered,
Ginny as well. "We were just discussing your travel
"Yeah. You must really be racking up frequent
miles." Harry said, grinning.
"Oh, you have no idea." Ginny moaned, dropping the
and sitting down, "I think I could probably apparate in my sleep
You guys will never believe this, but I was just on my way to see
both. I was going to drop this off at the Prophet offices for
Hermione," she gestured to one of the bags, "and then go visit you
"I took a personal day." Hermione
"And Im on my lunch break." Harry put in.
in the bag?"
"Oh yeah! I brought these with me from Paris,
because I knew theyd be perfect for you. I had you in mind
I designed them." She handed over the bag.
Hermione opened it and pulled out chestnut brown
made of a breezy linen fabric that seemed to float, rather than
They had a V-neck in the front to accentuate her collarbone and the
perfectly matched her hair.
"Oh Ginny! Theyre gorgeous! I love them! You
a calling!" Hermione said giving Ginny another hug.
"They are pretty lovely." Harry said.
"Wow! Thats high praise!" Ginny joked,
him lightly on the shoulder. "Harry Potter said my robes were
A guy, no less!"
The three laughed. "So whats up with you two?"
"Well, Hermione is going on a blind date with a
muggle accountant whose name she cant remember." Harry said,
"Really? When?" Ginny asked.
"Here we go again!" Hermione groaned.