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Snow flurries dusted Diagon Alley, and shoppers darted to and from in the yellow lamplight, making the most of the shoppes' final opening hours before Christmas. Only one particular shoppe was closed and locked, its windows darkened and shutters closed. The crowd inside, however, rivaled the one passing unaware outside.

Weasley's Wizarding Wheezes' First Annual Friends and Family Holiday Sale announced a banner on the inside of the door. Most of the stock was half-off for those in attendance — and George was by no means discouraging the prospective patrons among them — but it was, for all intents and purposes, a party.

Hermione was sipping on a cup of punch (personally vouched for by Molly herself) and checking out the latest Daydream Charms (sexy Healers showed the biggest gain in popularity) when a familiar voice greeted her from behind.

"Oh, hi Neville," she said, discreetly replacing a package on the shelf. "I wondered if you'd make it."

His eyes widened at the sight of her dress. The reaction puzzled Hermione, since it was not a particularly striking dress — just a plain blue velvet holiday dress, even a bit modest. She looked down, thinking she must have spilled something on it, but everything seemed fine.

Realizing he was staring, Neville quickly raised his head. "Of course. I wouldn't have missed it for the world."

"Big crowd, isn't it?" Hermione said. And then it was her turn to stare. Neville must have been working hard. She could detect some bulk under his jumper, particularly around his arms and shoulders. He was never exactly hard on the eyes, but over the past year, he had grown into himself. Or maybe he had a new air of confidence that made his looks irrelevant either way.

"Yeah, good of George to put this together," Neville said. "I reckon people are really in the mood to celebrate this year, aren't they?"

A mini-explosion caused them both to jump. They turned to find Alicia Spinnet sprouting red and green reindeer horns. "Don't look at me like that, Alicia. Those were clearly marked full price," George teased her, though he looked a bit sheepish as he worked to counter the charm.

"Lot cheerier than last year, that's for sure," Neville added.

That was an understatement. "Did you make it home for the holidays last year?" Hermione asked.

Neville shook his head, slipping his hands into his pockets. "Some of the younger kids couldn't get home, so I figured I'd better stick around, you know? It wasn't that bad, though. McGonagall snuck treats up to the Common Room under the Carrows' noses, and we all stayed inside by the fire most of the day. No doubt you three had it a lot worse. We were thinking about you," he added in a soft voice, looking down at his shoes. "Wishing you were there."

"Thanks, Neville. We had a lot to be getting on with, but we made it through."

"Where's Ron? I haven't run into him yet."

"Oh. He's helping George." Hermione swirled the melting ice in her drink. "He's been doing that as much as he can. And we've all been trying to catch up with our studies, of course." She bounced slightly on the balls of her feet. "We're just waiting on our scores now. Should be mid-January at the latest."

"You know you passed them all," Neville said.

"I hope so. We did the quarter term at Hogwarts, but we missed so much. I don't think Harry has anything to worry about, of course, but I'm really hoping to go into law, and Ron... well..." She took a sip of punch. "He's thinking he might want to try the Auror thing..."

Hermione trailed off, trying not to think about the spectacular row they'd had just a few weeks prior. Apparently she wasn't allowed to express any anxiety over her own scores without an avalanche of grumbling and sniping from her... boyfriend? What were they even? It seemed to change by the month.

"Did you sit for any NEWTs yet?" she asked Neville.

His eyes lit up. "In July, and I got three, can you believe it? An O in Herbology and and E in Charms, and I even managed to scrape by in Defense. It was enough to land an apprenticeship at a greenhouse in the Midlands. I've got a card and everything." He rummaged through a small pouch and produced said card.

Gullweather Greenhouses, Mapleham
Serving the Magical Community since 1904
Neville Longbottom, Greenhouse Assistant

"Neville, that's great!"

"No, keep it," Neville said when she tried to hand it back. "I've got loads of them."

Who would have thought Neville would be one of the first of their year to have an official business card? If she was honest, Hermione felt a twinge of jealousy, even if she was aiming a bit higher in her own professional pursuits.

"I'm not sorry to be out on my own," Neville said. "Granted, Gran's been more relaxed since the battle. Been through half my box of business cards, actually," he added with a laugh. "But still..."

"You couldn't get out quick enough," Hermione finished for him.

"Not really, no," Neville agreed, idly fiddling with a curled label on the shelf.

"I'm out on my own, too," Hermione said. "Here in London, dreadfully small and dingy flat, but... well, I thought I needed my own space."

Neville nodded in understanding. "There's a place up my way, sells used furniture for dirt cheap if you—"

He was interrupted by Percy Weasley, who paced by, holding out a basket full of Christmas crackers. "No guarantees," he said ominously, "but no one's suffered lasting damage yet, to my knowledge. Either way, I won't be held responsible."

Hermione chuckled, setting down her drink and choosing a cracker. "What's the worst that can happen?"

Percy did not stick around to answer.

"Care to?" she asked, holding the other end out to Neville.

He took it with a wary smile and pulled.

* * *

When the cracker broke, Hermione was in the darkened Gryffindor Common Room, which was hung with makeshift Christmas decorations and scattered with the debris of merrymaking. It was deserted except for a single person, who lounged in a puffy armchair by the dying fire.

It was Neville. From where she stood, she could only see his face. It was bruised, but he wore a faint smile, his eyes closed. Hermione took a few steps closer and then stopped abruptly.

He was having a wank. She pressed her hand against her mouth to hold in her gasp. His pajamas were pushed down far enough to free his unusually large cock, which he was stroking in a long, lazy rhythm.

A cat meowed at her feet, and Neville opened his eyes. He quickly stuffed himself back into his pajamas, his face morphing from embarrassment to confusion before finally lighting up in pure elation.

"Hermione?" he asked, standing. "Hermione, is that really you? How did you get here? Are Harry and Ron with you?"

* * *

"Hermione?" the same voice called, only it sounded far away. "Hermione, can you hear me?"

Her eyes refocused, and she was back at the joke shoppe.

"Yeah," she said, her voice husky. "What happened?"

"I don't know," Neville replied. "You were in a daze there for a second. Are you okay?"

"Yes, I'm fine." Her gaze shot to his crotch. She could still see.... "I'm fine," she repeated, shaking her head. "Maybe the punch..."

"Ah." He searched her eyes. "Well, that was underwhelming, wasn't it?" Neville held up the shorter end of the broken cracker and a crumpled magenta paper hat. "This was the only thing inside it, but it's yours if you want it."

"Oh." She reached out and took it, smoothing it out. "Sure, thank you."

"Don't worry," he said with a smile, perhaps misinterpreting her stunned expression. "I won't make you wear it." He rocked back on his heels. "Well, I should probably make my rounds of the room. It's been great catching up."

"It has."

"If you're ever headed up my way, send me an owl," he said, putting his hand on her shoulder amicably as he brushed past. "We'll go for a Butterbeer."

"Of course. Sounds great."

* * *

A month and nine passing NEWT scores later, Hermione sat at the desk in her tiny flat, futilely reading over the same sentence from chapter thirty-eight of Whippenworth's Short History of Magical Legal Theory. Her eyes kept drifting to the paper hat hanging from the corkboard above her desk. With a resigned sigh, she pushed the book away and took the hat down, unfolding it.

Technically, she had not gone back in time. Or at least, she had not left the present. But she had undeniably been in the past for a few moments, and she had been seen. Fresh heat rose to her cheeks when she thought about the circumstances under which she had been seen.

It was remarkable magic, but she had no trouble believing George Weasley could invent something so sophisticated. She also had no trouble imagining that he would feel particularly motivated to bring such an invention to fruition after the war.

She wondered what Neville was doing at that moment. She wondered how he explained the odd occurrence to himself, or if he even thought about it. It was such a brief moment in time that he could have easily written if off as a figment of his imagination.

She had to see him again. That's all there was to it. She pulled out her quill and a piece of parchment.

Dear Neville,

It was great to see you at Christmas. I hope you're doing well.

I was thinking I could use a houseplant. Let me know if there's a good time to come tour your greenhouse. Maybe we could grab that Butterbeer, too.

Love from,
Hermione

She had a reply the next day from a very handsome tawny owl, and it was a date. Well, it wasn't a date, per se... was it? Her body seemed unusually interested in it being a date, and technically she had no good reason at the moment for it to not be a date.

When the day finally came, a week later, Hermione was running late, in no small part due to her indecision over what to wear. She didn't want to dress too nicely. Neville would be in his work clothes. On the other hand, she wanted to wear something more feminine than jeans and a jumper. It was a chilly January afternoon, so she decided on a corduroy shirt dress, boots, and her wool overcoat.

She put on her nicest underwear.

The greenhouse was closing when she arrived. Neville had keys, so he suggested they grab a bite to eat at the pub and come back once everyone had cleared out. A few Cornish pasties and Butterbeers later, he was excitedly giving her a full tour of the greenhouses. Most of it went over her head and admittedly beyond her interest, but it was lovely to see Neville involved in something he clearly enjoyed so much.

"And look at these little guys!" he said, gently running his fingertips over some plants with long, snaky tendrils that curled around his fingers. "I started them from cuttings, can you believe it? I've been experimenting with infusions to encourage root growth, though you have to be careful with these because they can get aggressive if the roots grow too quickly." Perhaps realizing he was getting too technical, he ceased on the specifics. "Anyway, they make great houseplants, if you want one. They bloom in the summer."

"This is impressive, Neville," Hermione said. "You really have a way with plants."

Neville colored a bit, rubbing some moss off one of the pots. "To be fair, most of what I do around here is grunt work. That's how it goes with apprenticeships, you know? Harvesting pods, battling foliage, mixing compost and lugging soil, that kind of stuff." He shot her a modest smile. "It's got me in great shape, though."

Hermione's gaze trailed appreciatively over his strong physique. "Obviously."

"I have to say..." Neville gave her a cautious glance. "I was a little surprised to get an owl from you so soon." His hands went to his pockets, and he moved a bit closer to her. "Pleasantly surprised."

Hermione felt her face heat. "Oh... well, yeah, I suppose I should write more often...."

Neville shrugged it off. "We're all busy, I know." He cleared his throat. "Have you, er... been busy with anyone in particular?"

Her face grew quite hot indeed, and she wasn't alone. Pink patches of color had erupted on Neville's neck. "Not recently. I suppose I've been too busy with my studies for all that. Are you...?"

"What? Involved with anyone?" Neville picked some yellowing foliage off a nearby plant. "No."

"I can't believe no one's snatched you up," Hermione said, genuinely.

"Well, no, but..." He turned and gave her an uncertain glance from under his lashes. "I can't say I've been alone every night."

Hermione was stunned into silence. More, she found the idea inexplicably arousing.

"I can't believe I just told you that." Neville's expression shifted to one of concern. "It's not like I'm not a womanizer or anything—"

"Of course not," Hermione said quickly.

"It's just..." He bent over the work table on his forearms, rubbing at a spot in the wood. "Well, I've gotten more attention since the war..."

Hermione blinked. Of course he'd gotten more attention. He was a war hero. And look at him. But the thought of Neville Longbottom having flings? It was so hard to reconcile with the person she had known since first year, the person who'd had her running up and down the Hogwarts Express looking for a lost toad. Now, apparently, he had more sexual experience than she did.

"What is it?" Neville finally asked, biting the corner of his lip.

"I don't know." She started to get wet. "I guess I never thought you'd be the type to go for casual sex."

Neville suddenly looked miserable.

"That's not a judgment!" Hermione backtracked, putting her hand on his arm. It was very solid. "Don't get me wrong. I think we've all earned a little harmless fun. I don't see anything wrong with enjoying someone's company..." She swallowed heavily. "...a friend's company, say... every now and then. To be honest... there are a few people I wouldn't turn down, either."

Neville's eyes darted briefly to her lips. "Oh yeah?"

She unconsciously licked them. "Yeah."

"You know, it's the strangest thing," he said. His hands stilled, and he looked her right in the eye. "I was thinking about you last Christmas. In the Gryffindor common room. And... I know this sounds mental... but I could have sworn I saw you for a moment."

"What do mean?" Hermione asked breathlessly.

"I mean, for just a few seconds, I saw you across the room, as real as you are right now. Strange, right? It must have been my imagination playing tricks on me." He narrowed his eyes. "You were nowhere near Hogwarts last Christmas, were you?"

Hermione shook her head. "No."

His gaze dropped visibly to her breasts, his voice getting quieter. "Maybe I just really wanted to see you."

Hermione couldn't tell if he'd put two and two together in terms of the Christmas cracker. If he had, then he was well aware of what she had seen. She felt she should explain. Admit to it. Instead, she asked quietly, "What were you thinking about? When you saw me?"

The pink patches on his neck darkened, spreading up to his cheeks and ears. "You sure you want to know?"

"I'm sure." Neville was so close that she could count his eyelashes.

"I was thinking about how much I'd like to see you right then and... and kiss you."

Hermione's heart thundered in her chest. He really looked like he was going to kiss her, right now. And yes, this was exactly what she'd come here for, but now that it was about to happen, it seemed surreal.

Neville must have felt the same way because he leaned back. But a heartbeat later, his hand curled around the back of her head, and his lips closed softly over hers.

Apparently, Neville had a talent for more than just plants.

He offered her a hint of his tongue, making her come to him. When she did, he hummed, rolling his tongue against hers in a slow, sensuous tangle, gradually building to a mimicry of sex that had her clutching at his jumper. He backed off just as slowly, giving her one last, soft, wet kiss against the corner of her mouth.

He pulled away with heavy eyelids, squeezing her neck ever so slightly. "Kind of like that."

"Oh."

"Yeah." Neville let go of her and scratched at the back of his neck. "Well, I should probably lock up the greenhouse for the night. I'm sure you need to be on your way, too."

He couldn't be serious. "Neville," Hermione whispered, drawing him closer by his jumper.

"Yeah?"

Her own voice was low, husky. She barely recognized it. "There's nowhere I need to be right now."

She could see his Adam's apple bob as he swallowed. "There's not?"

"No."

Neville caged her in between the table and his body. It was a surprisingly domineering gesture. Even more surprising was how her body reacted to it. She wasn't sure anyone else would have elicited such a response. But this was Neville, the last person on earth she expected to be domineering. It was disorienting. It was unbelievably hot.

"You didn't come up here for a houseplant, did you?" he asked, his eyes searching hers.

"No," Hermione admitted.

"This is all rather sudden, Hermione. Not unwelcome," he added quickly. "But sudden. I'm not quite sure what to think about it."

"Me neither. When I saw you at Christmas, I don't know, I just..." Her head dropped, and she idly smoothed out the wrinkles she'd made in his jumper. "I couldn't stop thinking about you."

"What would you want to do? If you stayed?"

What kind of question was that? Wasn't it obvious? "Everything," she replied.

"Everything?" Neville's breath was coming shorter now. She could visibly see his chest rise and fall. He wet his lips and gave her a light chuckle. "Don't underestimate my imagination."

Who was this person? Had he always been there, under the meek, self-effacing front that Neville showed the world?

"I want..." How could she phrase it? What she wanted — what she'd wanted since that odd occurrence at Christmas — was to fuck. But she couldn't come out and say that, even if it was starting to look like Neville would have no trouble giving her exactly that, maybe even more than she'd bargained for.

"What?" he said when she hesitated too long.

There was no looking away. There was no avoiding the corniness of the words, but she had no idea how else to say it. She could still see the mental image of his cock, of his hand slowly stroking it, and the words just spilled out. "I want you inside me."

Neville dragged his hand down his face and let out a long, heavy breath. "That's...." He leaned his weight on the table, his hands on either side of her hips. "I can't say no to that," he said. "But I kind of feel like I should. You know?"

She knew, and she suddenly felt guilty for asking. Here she was, owling him out of nowhere, showing up at his greenhouse... no doubt like all his other flings had done.... "Yeah, I understand."

"Hermione..." Neville shook his head. "There's no way I can say no to that."

He kissed her again, his tongue coaxing her more forcefully. And again that hand cradled her head, holding her steady as his mouth moved across her cheek to her ear. "Do you want to move this somewhere more comfortable?" he asked.

It was dark outside. Over his shoulder, Hermione surveyed the greenhouse glass, heavy enough with condensation to afford some privacy but not to guarantee it. The thought sent a frisson of excitement down her spine. "Actually... I think..." She sucked in hiss of breath when his hand closed over her breast, his thumb finding her nipple at once. "I think I'd like to stay right here. Unless that's a problem."

Neville glanced towards the door. When he looked back at her, she could tell he liked the idea, too. "It shouldn't be a problem." He looked down at the hard peak now protruding almost painfully against her clothes. "Open your dress for me?"

Hermione wasn't expecting such a bold and immediate request like that. More, Neville delivered it in a voice quite unlike his usual speaking voice. It was gentle, barely above a whisper, but it had the edge of a command. She went to work on the buttons at once. When she paused at her hips, he added in the same soft but assertive voice, "All the way?"

Her dress finally hung open. Neville glanced up at her momentarily and pushed the fabric aside. He let out a long, ragged breath and bit into his lower lip. His eyes were all over her, followed by his fingers, tugging her bra cups down. He attacked that same nipple more insistently, working it into a hard peak, and once it began to ache, he gave it a sharp pinch.

Hermione gasped in surprise, not just at the hint of pain, but also at the answering gleam in Neville's eyes.

"All right?" he whispered.

Hermione nodded. "Yeah. Yes."

He waited a few seconds, in which Hermione could only stare wide-eyed at him. Then he went to work on the other nipple. This time, when he had hardened it to the point of pain, he lightly scraped his nail over it.

Hermione grabbed onto him, reflexively seeking friction against his leg, but he pushed her back. "Hold still," he said, shaking his head. "Let it build." He nosed her hair aside, working wet kisses over her neck. "It'll make it better."

It built, all right, and quickly. He continued his torture of her nipples for a few long minutes that left her trembling with the need to move. All that touch, and none of it where she needed it most. She could feel herself nearly gush in response. "Neville, please—"

"Are you wet?" he asked.

Again, he delivered the question in a surprisingly steady and shameless tone. Hermione nodded, feeling even more slickness ooze from her as Neville shifted to her side, sliding his fingers down her front. "Yes."

"Can I feel?"

"Of course. Please."

He slipped his fingers between her legs and gave her a light caress over her soaked crotch. Hermione grabbed onto his arms. She felt dizzy, dazed with arousal. She tried to grind against his fingers, but he removed them almost at once.

"Hold still."

"Neville, I can't."

Eyes now trained on hers, Neville bent his head. "Yes, you can." He sucked a taut nipple between his lips, and another please slipped out of her automatically. This time his hand slipped into her knickers, stroking her directly. "You're soaked," he said with a chuckle.

Hermione didn't think she'd ever been so wet. She could hear the movement of his fingers. And still Neville teased her, licking and sucking at her nipples while his fingers gave her only enough pressure to make her ache.

"Neville, I need more."

He pulled off her nipple and gave her a long look from under his eyebrows. Then he began a journey of wet kisses downward. He knelt. Hermione trembled at the mere thought of what was about to happen, but nothing could have prepared her for the hot drag of his tongue over her soaked knickers.

Her knees wobbled, and Neville reached for a nearby footstool. He tugged her knickers down and released one foot, securing it on the stool. Then he immediately went to work, licking slickness from her inner thighs, her bared lips, her dripping slit. He took his time exploring before finally honing in on that most sensitive bit of flesh. He gave it a few heavy licks and then latched on, sucking it as he had her nipple.

At that, Hermione cried out, clutching his hair and pumping her hips against his mouth.

Neville stopped, grabbing her wrists. He pushed her arms back against the table. "Don't move," he said.

Hermione stared down at him, stunned. She not only obeyed him; she realized she wanted to hear more commands. Not just that: inexplicably, the ghost of pressure on her wrists aroused her even more. And Neville didn't look at all sorry about it. On the contrary, he looked like he might like to see her test him.

When she didn't, he continued, and this time, he eased two fingers inside her, working her both inside and out. It was torture, trying to stand still. Her hands clenched helplessly against the edge of the table, that familiar tickle already building low in her pelvis. Neville worked his fingers and tongue tirelessly. The harder he worked, the less she needed to move.... He was going to make her come just like this.... After a while, it started to close in on her, and she started to tremble....

Neville stopped, panting.

"I was so close!" she cried.

"Were you?" He rose, wiping his mouth, a wild look in his eyes, as if he knew very well what he'd done. He tore his jumper off over his head and unfastened his trousers. "I want to feel it."

He was in remarkable shape, indeed. Hermione stared at his bulky arms, the dark hair covering his chest, the hint of muscle in his abdomen. He ran his hand over the latter and toed the stool over, positioning it in front of a wooden support post. He sat down and took out his cock, giving it those long, slow strokes she'd seen at Christmas. "Come here," he said, motioning her over with a single nod.

Still throbbing from her interrupted orgasm, Hermione obeyed at once. When he stroked her with his free hand, she nearly yelped. She grabbed at his shoulder for balance and widened her stance until her legs framed his lap. Even as desperately aroused as she was, Neville's cock looked intimidating. It was well over twice the length of his fist, the head bulging ominously.

"All right?" Neville asked.

"Yeah. Yeah."

"I know you said..." He swallowed. "We don't have to. I can keep on..." He trailed off but kept moving his fingers lightly between her legs.

"No. No, I want to. It's just..." Hermione let out a long breath, gazing at his cock, which was so long that it curved back against his abdomen. "Wow, Neville."

Other men might have looked smug at such an exclamation. Neville Longbottom looked a bit sheepish. "What do you need?"

"Just... keep touching me?"

"Anything," he whispered, and as he said it, he slipped a finger inside her and used it to pull her forward until her entrance nudged the head of his cock.

This was really going to happen. They were going to have sex.

Hermione angled her hips and slowly eased herself down. She couldn't get far. Neville nodded his encouragement, rubbing the pad of his thumb against her, right above where she struggled to take him. He couldn't even be halfway buried, but his cock stretched her open ruthlessly. She bucked around it, just to get more of his thumb, and then she kept bucking because all of the sensations combined were amazing, amazing.

Neville groaned around her nipple. His hips made tiny, presumably unconscious thrusts. "What do you need?" he repeated.

This time, the question had a different tone to it, and Hermione realized with a thrill what he was asking. "This," she panted. She wrapped her arms around Neville's neck and worked her hips until he was hitting the perfect place inside her. "You. Your cock."

With a curse, Neville grabbed her by her hips and hauled her further up into his lap. "Touch yourself," he said, bucking up into her.

Hermione thrust her hand between them and rubbed, losing herself to the same unbearable tightening she had felt under his mouth, only now it was so much more intense... it was inescapable... "Neville, I'm..."

"Do it," he said, bucking harder. "Come on my cock."

She shouted hoarsely as the first spasm hit her. Another followed it, and suddenly Neville stood, her legs still wrapped around him. He backed her against the post, driving his cock into her and holding it there, impaling her as her body reflexively convulsed around the intrusion. His lips latched onto her neck, greedily sucking the soft skin where it joined her shoulder.

Hermione's head fell back against the post, slack-jawed, her heart thumping a deafening rhythm in her ears. She couldn't believe Neville Longbottom had her pinned against a post in his greenhouse, grinding out the last of one orgasm and feeling like another could potentially build behind it.

She half expected him to go wild right there, to slam into her against that post until he came — and she wouldn't have objected to it — but Neville just thrust languorously, rolling his hips and licking the abused patch of skin on her neck. "Neville?" she said at last, when her throat was finally capable of speech.

"Yeah?"

"Do you want to...?"

He looked up. "Come?" He nodded, rather desperately, licking his lips.

"What do you need?"

At that, Neville slowly eased her off his cock and onto her feet, looking more uncertain than he had all night. Rather than answer, he turned to clear a space at the work table. He held onto his trousers to keep them from pooling around his knees. His glistening cock bobbed as he moved. Had she really taken all that?

Hermione could feel her heart hammering in her throat. Her knickers were still absurdly hanging from one boot. She kicked them off in a daze, watching Neville brush aside tools and empty pots. He turned at last and ran his hand through his hair. It was sweat-damp and thoroughly disheveled, his chest heaving with anticipation.

For a moment, he seemed to waver. Hermione knew exactly what he wanted, and there was no way she would say no. The thought alone had her clenching with aftershocks. But she desperately wanted to hear him ask.

He didn't ask. It wasn't a question. "Bend over the table for me."

Hermione obeyed as readily as she had all of his other commands, a little perplexed by her complete willingness — eagerness, even — to be ordered around by Neville. She shrugged out of her rumpled dress, using it as a makeshift pillow, and propped herself on her forearms. Arching her back, she looked over her shoulder.

Neville dragged his hand down his sweaty face and quietly muttered a curse. He stroked himself for a moment, just looking. Then he moved behind her, curling his fingers around one of her hips and guiding himself with the other. He just teased her at first, sliding back and forth along her slit. When he finally began pressing inside, Hermione discovered he had barely stretched her before. He felt impossibly huge from this angle.

Neville took her hand and guided it between her legs, encouraging her to rub herself. She was so tight and swollen inside from her orgasm, and the rubbing only made her more so. Neville let out a strangled noise. She could feel his thighs shaking against the back of hers. "All right?" he asked, pumping himself as shallowly as he could in and out of her.

"Yes," Hermione answered eagerly.

At that, he snapped his hips forward, filling her full, and started building a rhythm. He slid one hand up her sweaty back, stopping to release her crumpled, twisted bra. With that last garment out of the way, he freely rubbed her back before settling his hand on her shoulder. He picked up his pace.

Neville rode her like an animal. There was no other way to describe it. She was held immobile between the hand on her hip and the one on her shoulder, bent to accommodate the ruthless plunging of his cock. Hermione looked up and saw their reflection in the glass. She could just make out the look of greedy determination on Neville's face as he stared down to where they were joined.

"Still all right?" he gritted out, his thighs trembling harder.

"Yes," Hermione hissed, rubbing herself. "More."

Then Neville pounded her mercilessly, the pots jumping precariously across the surface of the table. He stuffed his hand into her hair, grasping a handful and urging her to arch even further. The wet slap of their flash echoed off the glass, the staccato rhythm getting faster and faster. Neville's panting grew painfully ragged, and then, with a harsh growl, he spilled inside her.

Hermione stilled, but Neville grabbed the hand between her legs. "Don't stop," he panted.

"You mean—?"

"What do you need?"

Hermione rubbed herself, definitely feeling like she could come again, but... "I don't..."

"Talking?" Neville said, his voice ragged and strained. "Do you need talking?"

Hermione was nearly embarrassed by the animalistic groan that left her at that thought. She knew Neville couldn't stay hard indefinitely, but he was still hard at present, still twitching inside her at random intervals. He slid his arm under her and palmed her breasts.

"You sore?" he asked.

"Mmph," Hermione managed through her nose, working herself. She was definitely going to feel it tomorrow and enjoy every second of it.

"You look so hot bent over my work table." Neville found her ear. "Dripping my come."

Yep, this was going to do it.

"I'd fuck you all night." He gave her nipple a sharp pinch. "If I thought you could take it."

Hermione whimpered her approval, working and working around the hard cock still lodged in the mess inside her.

"I'd have you face down on my bed all night."

"Neville, Neville..."

His voice dropped to a harsh whisper.

"I'd make you beg to come."

She nearly blacked out from the force of it.

Twice. She'd never come twice in a row.

Neville's cock slowly softened and slipped out of her, and Hermione's head lolled between her shoulders as she tried to process what had just happened — all of it.

Neville Longbottom.

Well, she could certainly see why he'd not been alone at nights.

He placed a long, single kiss on her back, right between her sweat-slick shoulder blades. She heard a whispered Accio, and a blanket zoomed towards them from a nearby cabinet. Neville caught it awkwardly and unfolded it, draping it over her. He turned her around, pulling the blanket tight around her.

"All right?" he asked, his chest still heaving with exertion.

Hermione stared wordlessly up at that round face she'd known for so long, trying to reconcile it with the man who had just licked and fucked and ordered her all over the place.

"Hermione?" he whispered. He pulled her closer, tucking a piece of hair behind her ear. "All right?"

"Yes, it's just I've never—" Why did suddenly feel like she was going to cry? "Neville, that was amazing."

"It was for me, too," he said. "I... I hope I didn't get too carried away."

"No," Hermione said, shaking her head. She didn't say it, but he could have gone much further. She had a feeling they'd barely scraped the surface. "Neville, no."

"Do you want to spend the night?" he asked. "I lease a small cottage down the road. You can have a bath... maybe a cup of herbal tea..." He touched her all over then — rubbed her back, kissed her temple, softly ran his fingers though her hair. "Anything you want."

It was like he was shrugging out of a costume he had put on. Just like that, he was the same Neville Longbottom she had always known — unassuming, humble, solicitous. The contrast was dizzying. Was it like this every time for him? Did he go wild with everyone like that? On the first date, even?

Was this a date? Did she want it to be a date?

He rubbed his fingers over the mark on her neck, biting the corner of his lip. "Do you want me to—?"

"I want you to leave it just like that," she said emphatically.

Neville's eyelids drooped heavily. "What do you say?" he asked, nodding over his shoulder, presumably in the direction of his cottage, and she could see from his eyes that he was far from finished. So was she, but....

"Neville, I really wish I could, but I have an early morning."

"Yeah. So do I, actually," he said. "Adulthood, eh?" For a moment, he looked like he might kiss her again. But then he picked up her dress, shook it out, and handed it to her. She took it and watched as he fastened his trousers and set about collecting their discarded clothes.

Hermione refastened her bra beneath the blanket and pulled her dress on, buttoning it from the top down and using the corner of the blanket to wipe his release from inside her leg.

"Er..." Neville held out her knickers. They were covered in dirt and no doubt a complete mess from her slickness.

"Keep them," Hermione said with a delirious chuckle.

Neville blushed as they disappeared into his pocket. "You know," he said, pulling his jumper on wrong-side-out and slipping his hands into his pockets, "if you wanted to get together again sometime... I mean, not necessarily to..." He motioned idly to the work table.

"Yes," Hermione said. "Yes, I would."

They walked to the fireplace. Neville took her overcoat from the hook on a post beside it, holding it up for her. He still didn't offer her another kiss, but his nose lingered over her ear for a moment as he helped her into the coat.

"Thanks," she said.

He handed her the floo powder. "If we do get together again," he said softly, hesitantly, "will you wear that dress you were wearing at Christmas? I liked it. It seemed..." He narrowed his eyes. "...familiar."

A look passed between them, full of both understanding and uncertainty.

"Absolutely," Hermione replied.