AN: I don't know when I'll be able to post again, but I figured while I had the time I'd put up another chapter.
Thank you for all your support! It is deeply appreciated!
"Sweetie, I wouldn't miss Wednesday for the world."
Victor gave his mother a small grin. "I know you want to come home for it, but please don't feel pressured to see me. I don't want you to make yourself sicker."
"I promise I will not be sicker if I see you."
Hermione brushed the last of the soot off Victor's robes. "I am a big girl and can take care of myself. I will feel sicker if I do not see you."
"If that's how you feel…"
Severus set a black suitcase on his bed.
Hermione kissed him on the forehead. "On Wednesday, you will see so much of me you'll be sick of my presence."
He laughed. "I could never be sick of you, Mum."
She embraced her son. "Good, because I could never be sick of you either."
His smile grew.
"I hate to intrude on such a tender moment," Severus placed a pile of folded black clothes into the suitcase, "But we need to ensure that we have everything packed for Australia."
"There's no hurry." Hermione released Victor. "My appointment does not begin for another hour."
"I know, but we need to leave for Australia the moment it ends, lest I be exposed to the moonlight," Severus replied as he turned his attention to the zipped up red suitcase. "Do you have your toiletries?"
"Not yet," Hermione answered. "I still need to pack my hair products and my toothbrush."
"That's probably my cue to leave," Victor cut in.
"You don't need to leave yet," Hermione began.
"Actually I do," Victor replied as his father glided over to a bedside drawer and began pulling out his underwear. "My lunch break is almost over. Normally Uncle Draco wouldn't mind me being a few minutes late, but with the election on Thursday it's been complete chaos at his headquarters."
"I would imagine," Hermione muttered.
"Both of us promise to vote," Severus took the underwear and laid it over his clothes. "We will do so as early as possible."
"Draco and I both thank you for the support," Victor turned to his mother. "Although if voting will be too exhausting for you then do not stress over it. We can win the election without you. Right now, you need to focus on resting."
She stifled a chuckle. "You are starting to sound like me now."
He raised an eyebrow. "How so?"
"You are fussing over me," she answered. "The same way I used to fuss over you."
He drawled. "No, I have a legitimate concern, whereas when I was younger you were just being a mum."
"I had legitimate concerns too. You legitimately could have gotten frostbite if you didn't wear your heavy gloves in the snow, and you could have legitimately been burned to a crisp if you did not apply the proper amount of sunscreen."
"Yes, but you were so fussy about it."
"I was being motherly."
"Sure, if that's what you want to call it."
"Speaking of fussing," Hermione smirked. "Have you organized your bookshelves yet? They were a mess the last time I visited. Your bedroom could use a dusting as well."
His lips curled up. "Now you are just being a mum."
"I'm not just being a mum," she answered. "I'm being your mum."
He kissed her cheek. "And I love you for it."
Severus stared at them. When he returned he would need to capture this moment into a pensieve.
"Now go," Hermione replied. "I will see you on Wednesday."
"Bye Mum, I love you."
"I love you too." Victor turned to Severus. "Goodbye Dad. I love you."
"Goodbye son," Severus answered. "I love you too."
Victor rushed over and hugged him. "Take care of yourself and Mum."
Severus wrapped his arms around him. "I will do so to the best of my ability."
"I know," Victor released him and rushed to the fireplace. "Take care of each other, and I'll see you on Wednesday."
"Goodbye," Severus called.
"Yes, goodbye," Hermione added. "We will see you on Wednesday, I promise."
Victor took a handful of floo powder. "Goodbye, and I love you both."
With that, he threw it into the fireplace and disappeared.
Severus glanced at Hermione. "He's right, you should not overexert yourself."
She sneezed. "I will be fine."
"If you say so," Severus muttered.
She coughed a few times.
"Are you feeling well?"
She nodded and coughed once more. "I'm fine, but Victor always uses too much floo powder. I need to discuss that with him again. He goes through floo powder so quickly. Merlin knows he'd save money if he used less."
"Probably," Severus muttered.
Hermione grinned. "Now, allow me to pack my toiletries and I should have all of my things."
"Very well then," Severus replied.
Hermione strolled into the bathroom. Severus watched his wife packing her things, desperate to shake the feeling that something was about to go horribly wrong.
"Thank you so much for these," Percy's eyes shone as he reached into the ashes.
"It's my pleasure," Arthur watched as the packets disappeared into the ashes on his end of the floo and into Percy's hands. "I would do anything to help one of my children."
"Well this is more than helpful. I need to know how the public truly feels about my leadership abilities," Percy answered.
"I know," Arthur sniffed. "I know."
Before the politician could answer, his father erupted into a coughing fit. Percy gulped. "Are you feeling well?"
Arthur took a shaky breath. "I'm doing fine, there's just something in the air."
Percy twisted his lower lip. "There's been something in the air for the last two days."
"Oh it's nothing but dry air I'm sure."
Percy cocked his head.
"Fireplaces always dry out the air," Arthur answered. "George has his lit at all hours of the day. It's enough to make me wish for a muggle heating system."
"Well, you could always come here to Peru and spend time with us where it's the middle of summer," Percy offered. "Molly and Dominique would love to see you, and I would not be opposed to some sensible company."
Arthur chuckled. "Is Ron getting on your nerves?"
Percy frowned. "He's dancing on every last one."
"Try to stay strong, soon everything will be…" his speech was cut off by another coughing fit.
"Are you certain you are doing well?" Percy asked.
Arthur whined and caught his breath. "I-I'll be fine."
"If your cough does not improve, then please see someone," Percy answered. "I would not want you to get any worse."
"Believe me, I am fine," Arthur gasped.
"Very well then," Percy's expression softened. "Goodbye Dad. I love you."
"I love you too," Arthur replied.
With that, the floo connection died.
If only you had not driven us to this point, Percy.
"Are you certain we shouldn't go to St. Mungo's tonight, Mum?"
"Of course I am," Molly put the ceramic tea tray onto the dilapidated coffee table. Liquid spilled from the cup on the right, whereas the one on the left was more stable. "There will be no room at St. Mungo's, and there will be little they can do for you there anyway."
Charlie took the tea cup on the right and blinked. "Two months ago you said no place was safer than St. Mungo's. Why the sudden change of heart?"
"St. Mungo's is so overcrowded, and there's no guarantee you'd get a good room. Then there's the fact that you'll be terrified to be in such a strange place. It must be traumatizing."
"I suppose that makes sense," Bill mused.
"I also wanted to preserve the remainder of my family as best I can. This amnesia epidemic has cost this family so much," Molly frowned. "It cost me your father, George, and Percy. I cannot lose you two too."
Bill took his tea cup and whispered, "We don't want to lose you either, Mum."
"Then it's settled," Moly clasped her hands. "You can stay in the Burrow with me until these awful episodes are over."
"What about Fleur?" Bill asked. "I shouldn't be around her when I think the world is under attack, but I don't want to leave her alone."
Molly sat on the orange recliner. "Does she have a problem with staying home at night and visiting you here in the daytime?"
"No, I suppose not," Bill admitted.
She clapped her hands. "Then it's settled! My boys will be staying with me for the next week."
Charlie groaned, "I suppose we will."
Everything was going according to plan.