Just Pretend

The time has come

I know it has been a long time since I have updated. I do apologize for the delay. This was supposed to be my last chapter but I lost my notes and had to rewrite and this is what came out to be. There will be only one more chapter left. Enjoy and let me know what you think.

As always I don't own Harry Potter or any of it's characters.

The following days were a blur of activities for both Hermione and Draco. Two days before the wedding, they had their bachelor and bachelorette parties. Hermione was taken hostage by Ginny and Pansy to go shopping. They went to many boutiques and tried many dresses. During that adventure there were many conversations taking place. One of which was the relationship she had with Draco. Needless to say, it made Hermione a tad uncomfortable. They had made many valid points and had mad her doubt her decision once again. After that Narcissa, Molly and Luna joined them for a late lunch. They began to have fun and Hermione forgot all about the earlier conversation. By the end of the night, she was exhausted and went right to sleep as soon as she got home.

The next day everything was chaos at the Malfoy Manor. Narcissa was running around making the final touches for the wedding the next day. Hermione arrived to a house full of people running around doing what Narcissa was ordering.

"No, those are for the ballroom not the entrance." She pointed to a huge floral arrangement that seemed to be moving by itself.

"I will take care of it right away." It said, of course once it started moving away Hermione saw a short man carrying it.

"Where are the winter roses I had ordered? They were supposed to be here by now." She demanded.

"They are being arranged in the driveway just like you wanted, Mrs. Malfoy." A secretary responded calmly.

"Make sure to charm them so that they will be nice and fresh until tomorrow. Have the menus and seating signs arrived yet?"

"Yes madam everything is going according to plan. Do not worry everything will be perfect." The secretary smiled reassuringly.

"Perhaps this will be a good time to whisk Narcissa away." Hermione smiled at the flustered secretary.

"Hermione dear what are you doing here? Shouldn't you be at the seamstress?" Narcissa greeted her with a hug and kiss.

"I was under the impression that you would accompany me. After all you need to pick up your gown also."

"You are right. I had forgotten about that. There is just so many things that need to get done for tomorrow." She sighed.

"Come on I'm sure that everything will be taken cared of. We must go, or we shall be late. You know how the seamstress hates it when we are late."

"Right, right." She turned to the secretary. "You have all my instructions written down correct?"

"Do not worry madam. Everything will be just like you ordered it." She smiled and nodded.

"Great, let's go. We'll be back later." Hermione pulled Narcissa away and apparated away.

They spent the whole morning at the seamstress. They had a late lunch with the other girls. Narcissa was beginning to worry about the preparations that her secretary was taking care of and Molly was trying to calm her down. Hermione was barely paying attention to the conversations going on around her. Narcissa watched as she was in her own little world. She knew that Hermione was thinking about the wedding tomorrow. She just hoped that she was not having second thoughts about it. She could see that no matter the reasons behind this wedding, that her son Draco and Hermione would be very happy together. She had never met a woman that could stand up to her son the way she did. She represented a challenge that no other woman had ever managed to give him. She knew by the conversations that Draco had with her husband that he felt something for her. The challenge was going to be to get them to admit it to themselves and each other.

Draco was at the Zabini Manor trying to escape from his mother and the preparations going on at the manor. He was somewhat nervous for the next day. He kept pacing in Blaise's study.

"Draco, would you please calm down and stop pacing. It is driving me nuts."

"I can't, I feel that something is not right." Draco kept pacing.

"There is nothing wrong. You are just nervous about tomorrow. Marriage is a big step for you." Blaise observed his friends with amusement.

"You don't understand. A lot of things could go wrong tomorrow." He sat on the nearest chair and put his head in his hands.

"What has you so worried? Surely you do not doubt Hermione are you?"

"I don't know. I wish I could tell you what is bothering me, but I cannot. No one can know what is really going on. This is something that Hermione and I know."

"Look Draco, what ever it is that is bothering you, you should talk about it. Perhaps then you can stop worrying."

"No, I will be alright." He laughed mockingly. "Look at us we sound like a couple of women. Come on; let us celebrate my last night of being a bachelor."

"Okay, let's go before my wife comes and locks the door and any other form of escape." Blaise grinned.

"I thought you were happy with Luna?"

"Don't get me wrong I love her. However, if I see her I will not be able to leave. Not because she would not let me but because I wouldn't want to." He laughed as they left.

Hermione got home late in the evening. She sat on her couch and began to process everything that had been said today. Tomorrow would be her wedding day. One of the happiest days in a woman's life. At the moment, she was not feeling the happiness.

"Stop it Hermione! This is the best for everyone. I am making the right choice." She tried to convince herself.

She started to pace her small living room and her eyes landed on one of the many books stacked on her coffee table. She sat and grabbed the book. She opened it to the marked chapter and began to read again. That is how she spent the night before her wedding. The following morning Ginny and Pansy arrived at her flat to help her prepare. Everything felt like a dream. A dream from which she would wake up soon and find out it was not real.

"Hermione are you alright? You have been so quiet." Ginny looked at her with concern.

"I'm sorry, it's just that I feel as if none of this is real."

"We understand how you feel." Pansy giggled. "It might seem like a dream but this is real. This is a great beginning to your new life."

"Pansy is right. In a few hours you will marry the man that you love." Ginny hugged her.

"Yes, and if we don't hurry you will be late to your own wedding."

"Aren't brides supposed to be late?" Hermione smiled.

"Not a Malfoy bride. You remember what happened last time you were late. Do you really want a repeat of the ball after graduation?" Pansy smirked.

"No that would be terrible for Narcissa. Ii couldn't do that to her."

"Good then it is settled. Let's make you the most beautiful bride any one has ever seen." Ginny took out her wedding gown and laid it on her bed.

Ginny and Pansy set to work on making Hermione ready for her wedding. Narcissa and Molly arrived just in time to help her into her gown. Her hair was up in an elegant bun with a few curls framing her face. Narcissa had brought a tiara that all Malfoy brides had worn. The tiara looked more like a crown with elegant silver arches and diamond accents.

"This, my dear is your something old." Narcissa said as she put it on her hair.

"It's beautiful. Thank you." Hermione was speechless.

"This is your something new" Molly gave her a silver necklace with an emerald-eyed dragon hanging from it.

"This is your something borrowed." Pansy put on simple silver teardrop earrings.

"And this is your something blue." Ginny gave her a sky blue garter to put on under her gown.

"I don't know what to say. This is all so beautiful. And you remembered the traditions. This means so much to me. Thank you." She hugged them and was trying not to cry.

"We love you Hermione. This was the least we could do for you." Molly assured her.

"Now, now we can't cry yet. We don't want our eyes all red and puffy during the wedding." Narcissa took a deep breath to calm down.

"Narcissa is right. Now we had better leave. It is almost time for the wedding. Everyone should already be there. You can't keep your groom waiting." Ginny smiled and wiped some tears away.

"Right, let's go." Hermione checked herself in the mirror to make sure she was all right.

They all apparated to Malfoy Manor where the wedding was going to take place. After making sure everything was fine with Hermione, the women took their places and the ceremony began.

"Merlin give me strength to do what is right. Please let me not be making a terrible mistake." She took a deep breath to calm down and started down the aisle.

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