Ron hated a lot of things.ron/hermione.
And unsurprisingly, he was the last one in all of Hogwarts, students, staff and even ghosts, to know. It hit him one night, when he and Harry were cramming their Divination homework that they put off for a few months. Hermione, being Hermione, reminded them time and time again, of course. But Ron and Harry, being Ron and Harry, didn't listen. And so Hermione, after being ignored by the two boys, got mad, gave up, and didn't talk to them for over a week. They finally decided to do it when, surprise surprise, it was due the next day. Harry, being Harry, was quietly doing his homework, while Ron, being Ron, was "doing his homework" and at the same time complaining, whining and babbling about how frustrating Hermione can be. Harry knew all this, having heard and memorized his anti-Hermione speech, and was getting tired of hearing it over and over. He couldn't concentrate on his homework. He desperately wanted to sleep; it was already 2:14 in the morning and he was only halfway done with his pile of homework. Everyone else was asleep in their beds and he longed to be in his too.
Ron put his quill down and Harry knew this was bad. This was the part where he really abandoned his homework to rant on and on about Hermione. This was the part where he says his speech, the one Harry knew by heart.
And so, Harry groaned aloud.
But Ron was deaf to the world, unlike Harry. Oh how Harry wished he were too, then he didn't have to listen and have to urge to just say the whole thing in fast forward so he can go back to his homework and Ron can start shutting up.
"You know, she really annoys me, Harry. You know when she..." Ron started to say.
Harry rolled his eyes and mouthed the next words. 'twirls her hair around her finger when she'd nervous.'
"twirls her hair around her finger when she's nervous..." he continued, now standing up to pace around the room. Harry smirked, and settled in for a long, boring speech.
"...it's bloody annoying! And I HATE how she bites her bottom lip, too! And oh god, I really HATE her bushy hair! Can't she stop studying long enough to pick up a brush? And oh yeah, you know how when she knows the answer to a question in class, which, by the way, she ALWAYS does, raises her little hand up in the air and how her shirt goes up a little? I HATE that! And I rally really HATE that she's such a know-it-all! Does she really have to know everything and study 24/7? Why can't she take a break or something? Oh yeah, and how she nags at us to do our homework but refuses to do it when we ask her to? That's so ANNOYING! I really HATE that! And how she always babies us when we get a little hurt after Quidditch? Does she WANT to be a mother or something? Why doesn't she just get married already and have babies of her own to-"
Harry didn't expect Ron to edit and add to his little speech. Oh no, Harry didn't expect that part about babies. And so he interrupted Ron, and for the first time, Ron stopped talking.
"Then why don't you ask her to marry you then?" Harry said, his eyes twinkling mischievously.
Ron was speechless. (pardon the pun) But after a moment, he got back in the game. With red ears, might I add.
"WHAT! HARRY! How can you even suggest such a thing! Just because she's an intelligent, hard-working, amazing, talented, independent, brave, beautiful, caring, loyal friend, doesn't meant I want to MAR-" Ron stopped and looked at Harry. "Do-ddoes...d-doesn't mean I LO-" he stopped again. "D-do..does..d-doesn't mean I LIKE her! Ron finished. He huffed and walked out of the common room.
But even from where he sat, Harry could see that his ears were still as red as his hair, and anyone who could see Ron's face would notice that his whole face was just as red. Harry smirked and sighed. Peace at last.
Ron flopped down on his bed, a million thoughts running through his brain. "I do not like Hermione," he said to himself, trying to turn the tingle he felt when he whispered her name to a disgusted shudder. It didn't work. So, he said it a bit louder, as if to reassure himself. "I do NOT like Hermione!" he said to the room.
Then a sluggish Dean said from his four-poster, "Riiight."
Then a sleepy Seamus said, "Keep tellin' yourself that, mate, and it JUST might come true." He sounded like he was suppressing a little laugh.
Then a lethargic Neville finished with, "...not."
Then finally, three different snores from around the room.
Ron groaned. "I do like Hermione," he whispered.
The next day, Harry had a permanent smirk plastered on his face; he knew that Ron figured it out. Finally. Ron, on the other hand, had a worried look and Harry was getting fed up. They were already near the Gryffindor table in the Great Hall.
"Ron, why don't you just bloody ask her out?" he said, exasperated at how Ron kept tugging at his sleeve then saying nothing when he finally acknowledged him.
Ron looked at him blankly.
Harry sighed. "Look, it's Halloween, on a Hogsmeade weekend. Ask her out."
Ron looked at him blankly.
Harry was getting annoyed. "You know the thing guys do to date a girl? It's called asking her out."
Ron looked at him blankly.
Harry was really annoyed. "You know the thing couples do? It's called dating. And if you want to date Hermione, you have to ASK HER OUT FIRST," he said, emphasizing the last part as if he were speaking to a child.
Ron snapped out of it. He looked unsure, but then he spoke. "You think that's all I have to do?" he asked Harry tentatively.
When he heard "Yes", Yeah", "Duh", and a lot of "Finallys" from his housemates- apparently, Harry had been a bit loud and attracted quite a number of people- he blushed.
"I guess that answered your question, mate." He patted his back and sat down to eat breakfast.
Ron was walking back and forth across the common room in front of the fireplace, pondering on how to ask Hermione out. Students were trying not to notice him and trying not to laugh, but unfortunately, that was quite impossible when they can hear him muttering to himself.
"Hermione? Can I talk to you for a second? I was just, you know, thinking about stuff, and was wondering if...no, no, that's not it...Hermione, I would like, really love it if you go out with me! god, I sound like Lavender! Hermione, I would be incredibly pleased if you accompany me to Hogsmeade. Oh god! Oh merciful god! I bloody sound like Percy! Gah! Bloody hell, I can't do this!" he exclaimed, throwing his arms in the air, then flopping down on the couch, buried his face in his hands.
"Yeah, you can," someone sounding awfully like Hermione said quietly from beside him. He wasn't paying attention to the giggling and whispering a while ago, but if he had been, he would've noticed that they stopped when Hermione came to him. It was so quiet, it's like the whole room was watching them with bated breath, which was actually true. And obviously, he was shocked to hear her voice. His eyes widened and his mouth hanged open. Hermione smiled and reached out to shut his mouth.
"H-her..Her-Hermi..m-mione!" he stammered.
"Yes?" she pressed, looking at him expectantly.
"Wh-w...Wha..W-What a-are yo..y-ou doing h-here?" he stuttered.
She tutted. "No, Ron, you're supposed to say 'Hermione, would you like to go with me to Hogsmeade?" she said, saying the last part slowly.
Ron stared at her. Hermione nudged him then said, "Go on. It's really simple, Ron." She smiled a little.
"Hermione, would you like to go with me to Hogsmeade?" Ron finally said, surprisingly calm. The whole of Gryffindor House cheered. They both looked around and blushed. Hermione grinned. "Yes." Their housemates cheered once more, even louder this time, if that was even possible. Ron can hear a lot of "Finallys" around the room.
But Hermione, being Hermione, was not like other girls who dreamt of getting married and having six children with the guy who asked them out. She didn't like it when guys asked her out. Not that guys asked her out, but you know. It just meant distraction. And of course, Hermione was scared. She knew that Ron liked her. And she really liked him, too. And that's what's scaring her. She didn't like the idea of falling in love. Why do you think they called it falling? Well, for her, it meant that when you fall, you crash, and when you crash, it hurts you. Call her cynical if you want, but in truth, she's just really scared. She's scared of the fact that if she loves Ron, he can hurt her. And most of all, she's scared that if he does hurt her; she'll still love him anyways. It scared the hell out Hermione. She was used to being in control of things, and she knew that with love, you can never be in control. She was also used to hearing about break ups and girls so much in love that they'll forgive guys no matter how much they hurt them. And every time, she promised herself that she won't ever be like them. And now here she was, practically inviting Ron to hurt her.
Ron was waiting for Hermione in the common room. They were going to the Halloween feast then go to Hogsmeade together. When she finally went down the stairs, he sucked in his breath and stared. 'God, she's beautiful.'
Hermione grinned at him and hugged him tight. "I'm so glad you're my friend. Thanks for asking me. You're a really great friend to think about what I'd feel with everyone else on dates. Thanks. You're a true friend." She said, beaming up at him.
Ron said, "Uh yeah! Yep, that's me! Your true friend!" Hermione smiles at him then walked to the portrait door.
Ron groaned inwardly. 'Friend!' Then he followed her, careful to paste a big, FRIENDLY grin on his FRIENDLY face.
They didn't eat much, so when they reached Hogsmeade, they immediately went to the Three Broomsticks to get some butter beer.
"Wait here, I'll get one for you," Ron said.
"No, no, you don't have to, it's not like it's a real date you know," she laughed. "I can get my own."
"Oh. Oh! Yeah I know! I was just being a friend. Friends buy their friends butter beer sometimes, just to be friendly, you know? And that's what I was doing! You know, being FRIENDLY," he finished, a huge friendly smile on his face.
Hermione shook her head, smiling. "No, really. It's fine." She then went to order, Ron grumbling to himself as he followed her.
Afterwards, Hermione wanted to go to the bookshop. She pulled a reluctant Ron to Flourish and Blotts. She smiled, a contented look on her face, when they entered. Ron rolled his eyes.
There was a new book out, and Hermione was drooling over it. Ron smirked a little and grabbed it from her, walking over to the counter to pay for it. Hermione ran to him and snatched it right back.
"No, Ron, I can get my own book. You don't have to pay for it." She then got her own money and paid.
Ron was frustrated. 'Why won't she let me pay for anything?'
They looked around some more and happened upon the Shrieking Shack. Some villagers turned it into a Haunted House, just like the muggle ones, for Halloween. Ron excused himself, saying he had to go to the bathroom. Frantically, he began searching for Dean, or Seamus, or Harry. He did NOT like the look on Hermione's face when she saw the Shrieking Shack. Now if only he stayed a little bit longer, he would see that she changed her mind about going in; it was evident in the expression on her face that she didn't want to set foot in that house.
"Dean! Dean! Over here!" Ron called out when he spotted Dean Thomas. He tuned, saw Ron and walked over.
"Yeah?" he asked.
"Hermione wants to go to the Shrieking Shack!" he said a little hysterically.
Dean grinned and slung his arm over Ron's shoulders. "That's great then! She'll be over you in a second!" he snapped his fingers. "Like that!"
Ron had thought about that already, and he was a bit nervous. But then if Dean thought it was a good idea, then, why not?
"Thanks, Dean," he said, walking away, a thoughtful look on his face.
"You're welcome, mate!" Dean called after him.
Hermione was waiting for him. When he reached her he said, "Hey, you wanna try the Haunted House?"
She looked at him worriedly. "Um, well, sure. But Ron, I have to tell you...I'm awfully scared of zombies..." She twirled her hair around a finger. Ron stared at it. "Ron? I'm scared of zombies..."
Ron looked at her blankly. My, he's getting quite good at doing that, don't you think?
Hermione blinked. "Never mind, let's go," she sighed.
Hermione was a brave girl and she doesn't get cared easily. But she was really scared of zombies. Ron smiled at that. Ah... the girl is afraid of something after all. Granted, he had no idea what a zombie was, but he was quite happy with the knowledge that this girl was human after all. He heard a little girl scream "Zoooombiiie!" in front of them and then her saw what made Hermione so scared. It looked a little funny to Ron. He could just imagine her screaming and clinging to him for dear life. He was so busy daydreaming that he stupidly forgot that haunted houses meant that there was bound to be spiders. Imagine his surprise when a huge one fell right in front of his face. Of course, it wasn't real, but Ron, being Ron, screamed anyway.
"Ron! It's obviously fake! Shh! Other people are staring!" she whispered loudly.
"I don't care! Hermione, let's get out of here! The only reason I brought you here is because I thought you would be all over me! Now let's get out!" he shouted fearfully, looking around for more spiders.
If Hermione had control of her mouth, she would've laughed at how silly he looked. But right now, she didn't, and it was hanging wide open.
"I wanted you to get scared, okay? I wanted a lot of things. I wanted to be on a real date with you. I wanted to hold your hand and kiss you and smell your hair," he continued, a little calm now.
Hermione looked at him blankly. Wow, Ron sure can influence people.
"I HATED not buying you butter beer. I HATED not getting you that book you wanted so much. I HATED not being able to treat you like a princess like I wanted to. I HATED the fact that you think I'm only asking you out because I pity you. I HATED it when you told me I was a true friend. I don't want to be your bloody stupid FRIEND. I want to be your bloody stupid boyfriend," he finished, letting out a huge breath before getting the courage to look at her.
Hermione didn't know what to say. She had tears on her eyes. Fuck her theory that love equals pain. She could've kissed him right then and there.
"Well, say something..." Ron said uncertainly.
She stayed silent. A tear escaped from her right eye.
Ron looked at her worriedly. "Are you crying coz what I said was sweet or because you're scared of zombies and there's one right beside you?"
Hermione looked beside her and sure enough, there was one. She didn't scream. But she clung to Ron.