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Hermione walked into the hotel dining room, Scorpius's hand clasped in hers. She'd been spending the morning so far dreading talking to her family again. The night before at dinner, her mother had sort of told her off for the way she had been acting at the reunion so far. But Hermione didn't really take the scolding to heart, as she knew how much her mother didn't like being within earshot of Hermione's aunts, uncles, cousins and sometimes Grandmother. Jennifer Granger only really got on with her husband and Grandfather Charles - the others tended to be categorised in a box in her mind that said 'Don't talk to, they're nasty twerps'. Hermione glanced around the room, looking for the table her family had claimed. She spotted them pretty quickly - situated at the biggest table in the room which was meant to seat 50 people not less than 10 Grangers, near the large windows that looked over some of the gardens and out into the sea - and immediately turned to retreat back to the safety of the West Wing.
Unfortunately for her, Scorpius stood his ground. "Come on Mummy."
"But I don't like them." Hermione complained to her son.
"Well then grow a pair and face them. But treat them politely so they don't know it's you when you're s-sabo-" Scorpius demanded, Hermione raised an eyebrow at her son.
"Sabotaging?" Hermione suggested.
"Yes, sabotaging them." Scorpius smiled. "That's what Daddy tells me whenever I have to see Hugo."
Hermione's lips pinched together into a thin line, secretly amused. "Really? Well I'm going to have to have a word with Daddy, aren't I? But first let's go back to our rooms and eat there."
"Nope." Scorpius started to drag his mother forwards. "If I have to put up with Hugo Weasley, you have to put up with your family."
Hermione groaned. "Unbelievable." She muttered. "Being bossed around by a three year old."
"A very smart three year old who sometimes acts more mature than you, Mummy." Scorpius countered, obviously having heard Hermione's comment. Hermione huffed but grinned at the three you old as he pulled her forwards.
As they approached the table, Hermione could see that her family had seated themselves so that they resembled a high court at a castle, the further down you went the further down in the hierarchy you were, with Grandmother Pippa at the head of the table instead of Grandfather Charles. Hermione scoffed when she saw that her parents were further down than a majority of the others.
"Morning Granny and Grandpa!" Scorpius cheerfully greeted Jennifer and Richard Granger.
"Oh look," Cordelia drawled, "Hermione has decided to join us."
"You should feel flattered that you're in my presence, Cordy." Hermione sneered.
"Don't call me that. My parents clearly said when I was born that 'Cordy' would not be tolerated as a nickname."
"Well too bad, I wasn't alive for that announcement so that's what I call you."
"Hermione, don't be mean to Delia, she's never done anything to you." Tobias scolded his niece.
Hermione snorted and shot him a disbelieving look. "Oh no, nothing at all." She muttered sarcastically. "She just happens to be a cow."
"I heard that." Cordelia glared at Hermione.
"You were meant to."
"Go sit where you belong, at the far end of the table, where things lower than peasants are meant to sit." Cordelia ordered, pointing the seats about 40 spaces away.
"With pleasure." Hermione smiled at her cousin, glad that she wouldn't have to suffer listening to her cousin for the remainder of breakfast. Hermione turned and started to lead Scorpius in that direction. "Come on, Scorp."
"Not so fast," Hermione paused and groaned as her Aunt Cecily stood up, "Apologise to my daughter, Hermione." She commanded.
"You've got to be kidding me." Hermione mumbled before turning her head to look at her aunt over her shoulder. "I think I'd rather not."
"Hermione Jean Granger, apologise to my wife and daughter this instant." Tobias demanded. Hermione turned fully to face her uncle, causing a look of triumph to flash settle on his face.
"I would, but I'm afraid that's not my name anymore. It holds no sway on me whatsoever." Hermione shrugged innocently. Tobias's triumphant look vanished immediately.
"Hermione," Grandma Pippa ground out dangerously as she stood up, "I know your parents raised you with more manners and respect than you are displaying, but since we last saw you you seemed to have forgotten them. Now please apologise to Tobias, Cecily and Cordelia."
"Well since you said please." Hermione mock bowed. "Uncle Tobias and Aunt Cecily, I am so sorry for ignoring your requests and not apologising when you demanded I did so." The two she was addressing looked rather smug as she apologised, obviously not picking up on the sarcasm she had slipped in there.
"Good. Now apologise to Cordelia." Pippa requested after Hermione made no show at continuing the apologies.
"You can't make me apologise to her."
"Richard, Jennifer control your daughter." Pippa turned to Hermione's parents.
"Hermione's a grown woman, Mother." Richard said as an excuse, not wanting to get dragged further into it than he had to.
"I'm not making Hermione apologise to Cordelia." Jennifer shook her head. "She did nothing wrong."
"She called me a cow!" Cordelia exclaimed.
"I cannot fault Hermione for stating the truth." Jennifer defended. Cordelia's and several others' jaws opened in shock.
"That's right," Hermione agreed, "I must not tell lies." Hermione paused, "Now if you'll excuse me, Cordelia has banished me to the other end of the table." Hermione said gleefully.
"Hermione is your husband going to join us? He is family now after all." Grandfather Charles called out, either oblivious or just ignoring the negative atmosphere.
"No, sorry Grandpa Charles, he's sleeping in." Hermione replied politely.
"How convenient. Are we ever going to meet this 'husband' of yours?" Cordelia taunted.
"And put him through the torture of meeting you?" Hermione pretended to think for a moment. "No." Hermione abruptly turned on her heels and started once more to head over to the other end of the table, walking faster this time so that she could actually get there before someone spoke again.
"Mummy, you didn't treat them very politely. Now they know you're going to sabotage them." Scorpius reprimanded when they got to the other end.
Hermione chuckled and held out a chair for Scorpius to climb onto. "I'll tell you a little secret," She leant in close, "It's more fun when they cower."
I'm sorry this took so long for me to update, I wasn't really sure where I was going with the story once they'd all seen each other. But I think this is a pretty good chapter to follow up.
Hope you enjoyed it!
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