To Tell the Truth PG by cat_itude
Prompts: Healer-in-Charge, Truth Serum or Potion
Pairing/Genre:Millicent/Ron / Romance
A/N:Sorry to the Ron/Hermione shippers. I had to make her a bitch to make this work. I hope you enjoy it.
“Healer Bulstrode! Healer Bulstrode!” One of the healers ran frantically around the fourth floor of St. Mungo's looking for the Healer-in-Charge.
Millicent Bulstrode sighed as she finished her tea. It was truly a rare occasion that she could sit for more than ten minutes without some catastrophe. She stepped out into the hall to try to stop the other healer. While at times it seemed odd to be supervising fellow classmates, she had to admit that she kind of liked the power it gave her, especially when dealing with airheads like Lavender. “Healer Brown, what on earth is going on that you feel you must run around like a chicken with its head cut off!” She asked coolly, one eyebrow raised in question. “It is Voldemort’s second coming or something?”
Lavender looked at her boss. “I’m sorry, Healer Bulstrode. However, we have an....issue that no one can figure out how to fix. The patient’s brother is insistent that he see the Healer-in-Charge,” she added, forgetting to mention who the patient was. She was less than pleased that Millicent Bulstrode was her boss.
“Very well, then,” Millicent said putting on her robes. “Let’s go see what is going on.”
As the two healers walked down the hall, they could hear a commotion from one of the rooms. “I don’t care what you have to do. I want to see the Healer-in-Charge!” George Weasley ranted. “I need to fix him. I can’t have him working with me in this condition!”
Meanwhile, the patient in question was really hitting on the medi-witches and nurses in the crudest, most tactless ways possible – admiring their assets, or in some cases a lack thereof.
Millicent burst into the room, Lavender close on her heels. “What on earth is going on here?” She had not noticed the patient completely yet.
A very flustered (and insulted) medi-witch started to try to explain to her what had happened. Millicent nodded and took notes, only stopping when said patient spoke to her. “Wow, who knew Bulstrode had a rack like that?”
Millicent stopped writing to get a good look at the patient. She nearly dropped her quill when she realized who it was. She looked from George to Ron and was silent for a moment.
Ron took advantage of the silence to start up again. “Hey Bulstrode, looking real hot there. Lavender, you look like a dog compared to her. Wow. Go out with me,” he said winking.
She looked back at George. “What the hell is this?”
”Where is the Healer-in-Charge?” George asked. “Why the hell are you here, Bulstrode?”
She gave him a smug smile. “I am the Healer-in-Charge, Weasley. So I suggest you curb your tone,” she said sharply.
“Oy, Bulstrode, baby, you can heal me anytime,” Ron blurted. “I’ve always liked you...”
She rolled her eyes and cast silencio on Ron before turning to his brother. “So, are you going to explain what is going on?” She turned to the rest of the staff. “All of you, out now!” She barked.
George was impressed at the authority she showed and how people actually listened. Since his brother was incapable of lies at that point in time, he decided to study the Healer-in-Charge.
Millicent Bulstrode had grown into her body during her last two years at Hogwarts. She was still tall, and not skinny, but she was well-proportioned and definitely did not look like a troll. She wasn’t gorgeous, at least in George’s opinion, but she was attractive, and…sturdy.
The tapping of a shoe on the tile floor snapped him out of his daze. “Well,” Millicent said, “I’m waiting. What exactly happened here?”
“Um, well…” George began nervously, “he was testing one of our new products, which will make someone incapable of telling lies. It’s supposed to be for a party game…to enhance Truth or Dare. It’s not veritaserum, but a much weaker truth serum. Well, it’s supposed to be weaker anyway. Instead, I think we made it too strong. In addition to that, he mistakenly took the bottle that had the potion in it, thinking it was something else,” he finished weakly. “Additionally, it causes the user to blurt out their true thoughts whenever they have them. No tact, no timing.”
“I see.” Millicent made some notes. “You do realize that I could report you to the Ministry, right?”
“I know. And it would serve us right, but I’m asking you not to. I have the ingredient list, and none of the ingredients are illegal…”
“How long until it wears off?”
“That’s the problem…we don’t know.” George looked down.
Millicent actually felt a bit bad for George. From what she had seen in the records, none of their pranks had ever had truly dangerous consequences, nor had she seen any patient in St. Mungo’s for more than a few minutes because of them. It was incredibly tempting to turn them in, but, she had taken an oath to help people. Of course it was a good chance for revenge for past school grudges, but she had always had a soft spot for Ron. Not that she’d advertise that of course.
“I’m going to have to take a blood sample,” Millicent said. “I promise it won’t hurt.”
She had a medi-wizard come into the room to take the sample. Before he left she turned to George. “Do you have a sample of what you used?” She was surprised when he pulled a vial out of his pocket and handed it to her. She looked at it for a moment before leaving the room after the medi-wizard, not bothering to speak to either of them. She had not removed the silencing charm either.
She returned a half hour later. “I don’t know what the hell you were trying to make, Weasel,” she said coldly, “but this is some very strong truth serum. It won’t wear off for at least 72 hours, at the soonest based on what is in his bloodstream.”
“Well, we can try the antidote to the Veritaserum, but I can’t guarantee it will work.” She turned to Ron. “If I take the charm off of you, will you keep quiet?” At his nod, she undid the spell.
She administered the antidote quickly, and sat down while they waited for it to kick in. After a few minutes she nodded. “So, Mr. Weasley, have you ever felt…any lustful thoughts for Harry?”
“Harry? Oh yeah, Harry’s my best mate, but yeah, he’s got quite a package…I wouldn’t mind…” Ron trailed off when he realized what he said. “I’d do you too, Bulstrode,” he added. “There was always something about you…”
Millicent shook her head, not believing what he was saying. “Okay, either he’s fighting the stuff, or he’s been having interesting thoughts…” she said to George. “I’m not sure which. We may have to do blood tests to determine whether or not it’s out of his system. As tempting as it is to ask intensely personal questions, right now, I’m not going to. It would go against the vow I made as a healer.”
“So, now I’m stuck with him for the next 72 hours?” George asked.
“Well, we can’t leave a silencing charm on him and he can’t stay here and harass my staff.” She replied. “So, I’m not quite sure what to do. Can’t you take him to your mother’s?”
“Are you kidding? Mum would hex him like mad for opening his mouth.”
Millicent smirked. “You know that might not be a bad thing,” she said, as the Weasley brothers glared at her. “What about Granger? Are you not living together?” She looked at Ron.
“All she’d do is bitch and lecture me,” Ron said. “She’s a nightmare sometimes,” he blurted out before he realized what he just said.
“Trouble in paradise, interesting.”
“Shut up, Bulstrode.”
“Well, there is possibly one thing we can do, but it’s not cheap.”
“Don’t worry about the money. What is it?” George looked anxiously at Millicent.
“We put him up on the ninth floor, in a private room. I will tend to him myself. That way no one is exposed to his commentary.”
George looked at his brother. “It might be best. Ron?”
“Does that mean you’ll sleep with me Bulstrode? I mean you look good and I bet you aren’t getting any.”
“Shut it, Weasel, or I just might make your brother take you home to either mummy, or your little harpy.”
”Hermione is no—no…she is...a harpy sometimes,” Ron said.
“You two make it very hard to be professional. I’m not sure whether to laugh at your misfortune or hex you both.” Millicent said as she motioned for them to stand up. “Let’s go. Someone will have to bring his belongings.”
Ron wisely kept his mouth shut as he behind Millicent and George the lift. However, he couldn’t stop himself from watching Millicent walk. Even at Hogwarts, in their first year he had been fascinated with Millicent. He wasn’t sure what it was that fascinated him. Maybe it was her height, or the way she didn’t act like Pansy, even though she was Pansy’s friend. Or maybe it was that she would defend her Slytherin housemates, usually with her fists. He had never told anyone about it, and though he would find himself watching her occasionally during their fifth and sixth years, and had thought about her occasionally while they were hunting horcruxes, he had begun to focus on winning Hermione’s heart, and thoughts of Millicent Bulstrode faded into the background.
So, if he was in love with Hermione, and planned on marrying her, why was he secretly pleased with the prospect of being alone with Millicent on and off for the next seventy-two hours?
He felt guilty for it. He was in love with Hermione, even though she had been incredibly annoying lately. She tended to nag about everything, from the fact that he spent so much time at the shop, to the fact that he never took her anywhere. She also brought home friends and co-workers from the ministry, and they always talked about things that he either had no knowledge of, or wasn’t interested in. She never wanted to talk about his job, or anything he liked either. Still, she was Hermione and he loved her…didn’t he?
George and Millicent talked as they made their way to Ron’s private room. They were discussing Quidditch of all things. Millicent’s brother played for Puddlemere, and she was quite familiar with the game.
They stopped in front of Room 15. “Here we are,” Millicent said, opening the door. “Your new home for the next three days.” She let them go in first. “These are the rooms for severe cases and celebrities. They are high security. You brother, William, I think, helped redesign the wards.”
Ron and George looked around in awe. This room was larger than both their rooms at either the Burrow, or either of their flats. It was decorated like a small suite, though the bed was still the standard hospital bed.
“There are accommodations here so that families can stay with their loved one in their final days,” Millicent added.
Ron sat down on the bed. “Do I have to stay in the bed the whole time?”
“No. However, you have to stay in the room. I’ll bring your meals and if you want to have Potter or Granger come visit you, you may do that too.”
“You can stay with me,” Ron blurted out. “I can get some real hands-on healing, eh?”
“Weasley, shut up or I’m going to cast a permanent silencing charm on you.” She shook her head again. “George, can you please let Granger and Potter know where he is? I imagine she will go spare if he’s not home. Ask her to bring him his pajamas and whatever other necessaries he needs. Possibly even his wizard chess set.”
”She won’t care—“ Ron started to say, but was silenced with a look from George.
“I will see about getting some food up here. There is paper and quills and a few magazines in here if you get bored,” she said to Ron before she left.
George left shortly after Millicent did, and Ron was left with his thoughts. He never would have thought that Millicent, no Bulstrode, would be a healer, let alone Healer-in-Charge. He had to admit she did look good. He appreciated her height and the way she dressed - not too conservative but…stylish, unlike Hermione who tended to look like a schoolmarm most of the time. Her voice was low, and very pleasant even when she was being snappish. Hermione sounded like a banshee sometimes. This must be a side effect of the potion. I would never compare someone like her to Hermione.
Millicent returned about 2 hours later. She needed to take care of some things before bringing dinner. George met her at the lift. “You don’t want to go in just yet,” he said as the two walked down the hall and found Harry outside the room. “It’s bad, George,” he said before looking at Millicent. “Bulstrode.” He acknowledged the healer with a nod.
“Potter,” she replied. “Are they having a row?” she asked.
“Yeah, but she’s talking and he’s not getting a word in edgewise.”
”Then we better get in there before he blurts out something he is going to regret. I don’t want to have to charge for repairs to the room.”
“What are you doing up here anyway?” Harry asked.
“I am handling his case myself because he was harassing my staff.” She replied as Harry nodded. “Besides, would you rather see Healer Brown take this one?” she asked.
She frowned as it seemed like the yelling got louder. She could hear some of the things Hermione was saying, and they were not pleasant. Some of them were downright mean in fact. “Okay, we need to break this up. Are you two listening to this? I knew that they had a penchant for fighting with one another, but this is really pushing it.”
The other two frowned as they heard as well. “Yeah,” George said. “That’s out of line. I don’t know why Hermione would be so vicious.”
Millicent opened the door. “Keep it down, Granger, the entire floor can hear you,” she snapped.
“What the hell are you doing here?” Hermione demanded, glaring at her former classmate.
“Ronald, is my patient,” she said. “And you really need to lay off of him. You don’t say those kinds of things to people you love. He made a mistake. A stupid mistake, yes, but a mistake. He’s suffering enough I think, saying things to my staff that could feed several cases of sexual harassment, that could be used as blackmail material by his brother, or anyone else who heard. Furthermore, he’s stuck here, which I think is punishment enough.”
“No it’s not. This room is nice. You’re nice. She’s not nice,” he said.
“What’s wrong with him? How hard is it to feed him the antidote and make this better? Are you that inept as a healer Bulstrode?”
“Hermione, that’s out of line!” Ron yelled. “You didn’t even let her explain what was going on. For that matter you came in here yelling and didn’t let me tell you, what was going on! I’m so incredibly sick of this!”
Millicent looked at Ron. “Thank you for the defense, but I can handle this.” She turned to Hermione. “I’m actually the Healer-in-Charge, Granger, and if you would shut up for half a second and get off your self-righteous high horse I’ll tell you why. The antidote doesn’t work. This is a hybrid variation on a truth serum. There isn’t an antidote for it. It will wear off in a little under three days. We moved him up here because his commentary has been rude and harassing to the staff. If you have a problem with me being on the case Granger, I’ll send Brown up to take it instead.”
As Millicent and Hermione argued Ron found himself watching how composed Millicent was. How calmly she handled Hermione, and how she had stood up for him. That was totally unexpected. He found himself focused on her lips, until she mentioned Lavender. “Not Lavender,” Ron said. “She’s a cow and I’d never get any sleep because I’d have to listen to her bitch.” He looked at Hermione. “Not that you are much better,” he snapped.
Hermione looked offended. “I bet I could make one,” she said. “I’m not going to allow him to stay here alone with you.” She snapped.
“Suit yourself,” Millicent said. “That chair folds out into a bed. Bathroom through there” she said. It rather bothered her that Hermione was being such a possessive bitch over Ron. Not even Ron deserved that, but why the hell was she suddenly caring about what was going on between the Weasel and Granger?
She turned back to Ron. “I brought you some real food from the Italian place down the way,” she said. “I wouldn’t even eat the food here,” she added. “Had I known that Granger would be here so soon, I’d have gotten more. Oh well.”
“I ate, thank you,” Hermione replied coldly.
After the others had finished Millicent stood up. “I will be leaving now, you three may stay if you like. Potter, I guarantee that you will be left alone up here. I will be back in the morning and we’ll see how he is doing.”
No sooner did Millicent leave than Hermione railed on Ron again. This time it was about Millicent. It took a bit of time before Harry dragged Hermione out of the room to take her home, so that Ron could actually get some sleep.
He didn’t sleep however. He lay awake wondering what had gotten into his wonderful girlfriend, and why he was still fascinated with Millicent. He couldn’t put his finger on it still. She had more in common with him, and was just as smart as Hermione. She didn’t seem so wrapped up in her work either. She was apparently devoted but not married to it. He wondered if she was seeing anyone.
She had stood up for him. Something that he would not have expected, regardless of how much she defended her own friends at Hogwarts. Just that was enough to give him reason to think about her. She was right, though, you don’t say some of the things his girlfriend said to him.
As he fell asleep, he made a mental note to get to know Millicent a bit better.
Millicent spent a good deal of the night thinking about what she had witnessed. Most of the school had predicted that Ron and Hermione would get together at some point. Ron was love struck over Hermione though he didn’t know how to show it, and she liked him back. She knew that the bookworm could be a bit bossy and overbearing, but she never thought that Hermione Granger would be so cruel to the man she supposedly loved. Even Draco Malfoy, who was one of the coldest people she knew, was never cruel to his wife, not like that. He didn’t show a lot of emotion, but from what Astoria had said, he never said anything harsh or cruel or demeaning. It just wasn’t right. I’d never do that to him – or anyone.
She wasn’t sure why she was thinking so much about him. But over the years, while they were in school, she had noticed that he was always treated like the sidekick. He was just there, while Harry had the spotlight – whether he wanted it or not. Hermione was the top in their class, at least when it came to the theory of magic. Ron was an ace at chess, and a decent keeper, but that was it. Nothing extraordinary, compared to the rest of the trio, or even his own family.
But if one looked closer, one could see him defending those who needed it. Despite his temper and his height he was amazingly gentle, and loyal to a fault.
She finally went to bed, trying not to think about Ron Weasley.
Ron was awake when Millicent arrived with a light breakfast. “Do I get my hand-on healing, Bulstrode?” he asked. “ I think I really need it. Come on, you know you want it too.”
Millicent shook her head. “Watch it, Weasley or I’m going to cast another silencing spell.” She laid out the breakfast. “Sleep well?”
“No, I didn’t sleep well.” Ron really had to control himself not to say anything else. The truth serum was still working. He was fighting to not blurt out what he had been thinking about.
Millicent noticed the struggle and decided not to bait him. “I’m sorry to hear that.” She took a bite of her muffin. “So, what do you want to do today? Is Gran—Hermione going to come over later?”
“Don’t know,” he said with his mouth slightly full. “Don’t know that I care either.”
That last bit surprised Millicent. “Oh.”
“Well, after what she said last night, I don’t know that I want to see her. She really took it too far. Lecturing me on how irresponsible it was for us to be making that product and how stupid I was, and how I lacked ambition, and why couldn’t I get a job at the Ministry with Harry as an Auror. It’s always been her asking why I couldn’t be more like Harry – more responsible, more devoted. Then it went into a rant about how Ginny and Harry were getting married before us, and how I couldn’t afford a nice ring for her. It went downhill from there.” Ron turned red.
“Don’t worry. I won’t hold anything you say while under the influence against you,” Millicent said gently. “I’m sorry that she was so hard on you though.” She paused for a moment. “Did your brother bring your chess set?” she asked.
“Yeah. Do you play?”
She nodded. “Yes, I do play, and I’m not too bad at it either. Go get it out.”
“Don’t you have rounds to do?” He asked.
“The perk of being Healer-in-Charge is that I can delegate my workload. I’ll make my rounds a bit later, and everything will be fine.”
He nodded and got out his chess set. She likes chess too. Hermione hates this game, but probably because I’m better at it than she is.
It was a long game. Millicent proved to be quite a match for him. In fact, she actually won. “You realize, that you are the first person to beat me in a very long time.”
Millicent smiled. “Well, we are just going to have a rematch aren’t we?” she laughed. “You are the first person to present a challenge to me,” she said.
He was going to reply, but was interrupted by a knock on the door. “Come in,” he called. “Stupid people,” he muttered.
Molly Weasley came into the room quickly. “Ronald Bilius Weasley what on earth were you thinking? I’ve already given your brother an earful. How irresponsible could you be?” She went on for about five minutes before noticing that Millicent was in the room. “Healer Bulstrode?” she asked.
“Yes ma’am,” Millicent stood up. “At your service.”
“George explained everything to me. Thank you for your discretion and your kindness.”
“Well, he would have harassed the staff otherwise.” Millicent said calmly. “George seemed so sincerely sorry about the whole thing that this was the least I could do. I certainly would not have wanted you to hear some of the things that were coming out of his mouth,” she added.
Mrs. Weasley nodded. “Probably a wise thing, dear, if I know my son’s experiments,” she said before turning back to her son. “What on earth is going on with Hermione? George told me what she said to you, but then she came to see me and I got an earful.”
”I don’t know mum,” Ron replied. “She’s been an unbearable harpy lately. Nothing I do is good enough and she compares me to Harry and it’s just awful.”
Maybe this truth serum stuff isn’t so bad, Millicent thought. </i>If it saves someone from an unhappy relationship, or facilitates communication in a relationship that needs fixing.</i> She filed that though aside as she tried not to listen as Ron blurted out everything that Hermione had said to him.
His mother listened, agreeing that Hermione had not been very nice lately. In fact, she had been downright nasty. She cast a subtle look at the Healer-in-Charge as Ron described how she had stood up for him. George had relayed that to Molly, but hearing it from Ron made her wonder, and remember many years ago how Ron would go on and on about this one Slytherin girl. He never did it anyone else’s presence but hers. She knew that the Bulstrodes were good people, overall and they had been neutral during the War. She nodded when he was finished. “I’m just glad you are alright, Ronald, and maybe you will have learned your lesson. Oh, I almost forgot,” she said as she pulled a box out of her purse and enlarged it. “Here are a few things for you to tide you over until this is done.”
”Mum stop babying me!” Ron said. “It’s embarrassing in front of Millicent.” He turned red when he realized what he said.
“Very well, Ronald,” Molly said, nodding as if an old hunch had been confirmed. “I’ll see you in a day or so, right?” She turned to Millicent. “Healer Bulstrode, thank you again.”
“It’s quite alright Mrs. Weasley,” Millicent felt herself blushing. “It’s been a while since I’ve played chess with someone who gave me a challenge.” She shook Molly’s hand.
“Sorry about mum,” Ron started once his mother was gone. “She gets like that.”
“I’m not concerned about that,” she said softly. “She cares.”
She sat down again and looked at him. “Did Hermione Granger really say all those things to you? I only overheard part of it. You don’t have to tell me,” she added.
“She gets like that occasionally. She thinks I lack ambition. She wants me to be more like Harry. She says I embarrass her because I work in a joke shop, because I’ve not gotten her a ring like Ginny’s yet.” He kept going, expounding on everything that was wrong in their relationship.
“It’s been five years since we graduated. This has been going on for five years?”
“No, only the past three. I swear it drives me crazy. At times I wonder if anyone else would be as demanding.” He felt himself get more and more emotional. “I knew she could nag and be overbearing, and I didn’t mind. But I’m happy where I am right now, for the first time in a long time, and I’m making decent money. I just wish it were enough for her,” he said. The truth serum was still working obviously.
“Why do you stay with her?” Millicent asked. “I’m just curious as to why someone would stay with someone like that.”
Ron shrugged. “I don’t know,” he admitted. “I guess I can’t imagine life without her? She’s been such an integral part of my life for so many years, since we were eleven. That’s what twelve years? Over half my life.”
Millicent nodded. “But at the cost of your dignity and self-esteem?
That gave Ron something think about.
They spent the rest of the day playing chess and just talking. Millicent was usually never this open with her patients, but she found Ron easy to talk to. Working with George had done a lot to make him a bit more confident in himself and it showed. They talked about everything from their school days to Quidditch. She knew that Ron wouldn’t be this open if he weren’t under the influence of the potion, so she took advantage of that.
When the subject of their crushes at Hogwart’s came up he became flustered. “Well, there was Parvati, man, she was hot. Susan Bones wasn’t too bad either, you,” he said quickly before going on to rattle off other girls in the school.
“Wait a minute, back up there, Weasley,” Millicent said. “You…had a crush on me?” She laughed. “I think the potion has worn off now,” she said.
“No, seriously,” Ron said. “I don’t know what it was about you, but there was just something that I found fascinating.”
Millicent stared at him as if he were crazy. “You are nutters. I remember that you and Potter called me a hag and a troll, and all sorts of awful things.”
“Well, the Slytherins weren’t exactly nice to us, you know. I mean you got into a fight with Hermione during that dueling club.”
“Well, she wasn’t exactly playing by the book either, you know.”
“Anyway, I don’t want to talk about her anyway. I’d rather talk about you. I was fascinated until fourth year and then I developed a crush on you. You probably would have pounded me if I had said anything about it back then.”
“Yeah I would have,” Millicent admitted. “Since you are speaking while under the influence, supposedly still under the influence anyway, we’ll do a blood test tonight to decide, and I’ll make this exchange of information equal. I had a crush on you too. When you think about it we had a lot in common. Neither of us were leaders, we played second fiddle to others – Harry in your case and Pansy in my case. You were also overshadowed by your siblings. My brother is an overachiever, so I understood those feelings as well. We are both loyal to our friends though, and would walk through fire if they asked.”
Ron nodded. “I see where you are coming from. I guess I could see the same thing now, looking back.”
“You’ve made your choices though, and you are with your dream girl.”
“She’s not that much of a dream anymore. The more I think about it and the more I talk about it, the more I wonder if she is the right one. She gets upset about me going to see Quidditch matches, only grudgingly goes to Ginny’s games, and seems to want to mold me, like I said.”
“Maybe you should break up with her? I’ve always believed that when you love someone, you don’t belittle them like that. However, it’s your choice.”
She was interrupted from continuing by a knock on the door. “Healer-Bulstrode, we have an emergency and we need you.”
“I’ll be right there,” she said standing up. “Do you want me to bring dinner or do you want to dig into your mum’s goodies?” she asked.
“Why don’t you come back and share them with me? Mum makes enough to feed an army.”
She smiled. “I will do that. I also want a rematch,” she said as she left the room to go tend to other things.
She wound up taking longer than she thought she would. She was going to knock on the door, but the door was flung open before she could. A very angry Hermione Granger stormed out, her face streaked with tears. “He had the audacity to tell me he liked you, Bulstrode,” she seethed. “He dumped me. You are such a whore, and I think I will be complaining about your lack of professionalism because you seduced him!”
Millicent stopped Hermione before going any further. “I did no such thing. He’s under the influence of a truth serum, Granger. That wasn’t my doing. All I did was play a few games of chess with him and talk. Whatever he told you, he obviously thinks since I think he’s incapable of lying. He probably dumped you because you seem to do nothing but nag and belittle him anymore.”
“I do not!” Hermione was adamant. “What is so wrong with wanting him to be more?”
“Nothing, except when you expect him to be like other people and not himself!”
Hermione just glared at her and stormed off.
Ron looked absolutely miserable. “Thank you again, for standing up for me.”
Millicent nodded. “It’s alright,” she said. “You two broke up?” She was secretly pleased to hear that.
He nodded. “I just got tired of it. Maybe this truth potion was a good thing…I managed to finally speak my mind.”
Millicent just nodded. “Doesn’t make it any easier though, does it?”
He shook his head and started crying. “I feel free but at the same time I feel miserable,”
he said softly.
She handed him a Kleenex. “Do you want a Dreamless Sleep potion for tonight?” she asked gently.
He nodded, and she pulled one out of her bag. “Here’s that and a Calming Draught. You might want to take this one first.”
Their hands brushed as she handed him the potions. She was very aware of it.
He was aware of it too.
They shared Molly’s food in silence; both were lost in thought. After they ate, Millicent got up to go.
“Please stay a bit longer,” Ron said. “I don’t want to be alone.”
She nodded. “Alright”
They still didn’t talk much. She wasn’t sure what to say right now, and she did not want to be guilty of what Hermione was accusing her of.
As Ron started to fall asleep she got up to go. “I’ll see you in the morning. Sleep well,” she said softly as she quickly left the room to go home. She didn’t believe she ever stood a chance despite the fact that he was now free; and she was not going to be a rebound for anyone.
With that she settled in for another restless night.
She did not show up the next morning instead sending one of her trainees to take his blood test and go get the results. She did however show up in the afternoon to release him. “You should be okay now,” she said softly. “You can go. Is the flat you and Hermione were in yours?’
He nodded. “It is mine,” he said softly. “Why didn’t you come this morning?” He had been incredibly disappointed that she hadn’t.
“I had things to do”, she said not quite looking at him.
“Oh, okay,” he nodded. “Well, anyway,” he said as he packed up his stuff, “I suppose I should go. I would like to maybe meet you for a cup of coffee sometime,” he added.
”I’ll think about it.” She said honestly. “Give yourself some time to get over Hermione, and see if maybe there is a chance for reconciliation.”
He nodded. “Thank you again, Healer Bulstrode,” he said holding his hand out to her.
“A pleasure, Mr. Weasley,” she said as she took the offered hand and left.
About a month later, Millicent found a huge bouquet of flowers on her desk – Ron had sent flowers a few days after he had been released, but they were nothing compared to this. She knew they were from Ron, and that made her smile. The card had a simple note on it: “I’m ready to move on.”
They met for dinner that night, and had a wonderful time. Millicent saw another side to Ron Weasley that she didn’t know was there.
They continued to see each other, and over the next several months most of the Weasley family had come to know Millicent and welcomed her into the family.
A year later the two were walking in the meadow near the Burrow. Mrs. Weasley had packed them a picnic lunch.
They sat under a tree and took out the chess set. “What are we playing for this time?” she asked with a laugh as she took her pieces out.
“For keeps I think,” he replied as he pulled out a box. “You’ve been a part of my life for a year now, as a friend and companion, and I can’t envision myself without you by my side. Marry me,” he said as he opened the box to reveal a rather nice sized diamond ring.
Millicent smiled and decided to tease him. “If you win this game, I will marry you,” she teased. “If I win this game, then we will have to think of something else,” she winked at him. “Like you marrying me.”
It was several hours before they actually got around to playing the game, which Ron won. “I guess I have to marry you eh?” she said, kissing him again.
“Well, you don’t have to, but I’d like it if you did.”
“You aren’t under the influence are you?”
“Nope. Not this time,” he replied as he kissed her again.