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Title: Tangled
Author: Rajko
Rating: PG-13
Category: Harry Potter/Twilight
Ship: Harry/Jasper. Hermione/Edward.
Genres: Romance. Hurt/Comfort.
Disclaimer: I own nothing but my undershorts.
Warnings: Unbeta'd. 
Notes: This story is based post-war, with some minor changes to timeline and complete disregard for some of the events in book seven. It begins somewhere around the end of New Moon, with Bella and Edward trying to repair their damaged relationship. I don't do character bashing so all characters will be represented.

Summary: Desperately in need of a holiday, Harry finds his way to Forks, Washington, and the life he never knew he was destined for.

When Harry Potter goes to Forks, Washington, it's just another town in a long list of towns he's visited over the last few weeks. It isn't special or unique; it's just like everywhere else he's been, only it has more trees. He isn't sure if that helps or hurts, but at least it's something new to look at while he explores the city, already feeling strangely at home in the cold wet weather that hangs over them.

"Are you sure you want to do this, Harry?" Hermione asked, face pensive as she stared down at the glossy brochure the realtor had handed them just before they'd left her office. "It says here there are 'spacious apartments' on the other side of town; maybe that would be better?"

"I've lived in a flat before," Harry reminded, hands sliding into the pockets of his trousers. They were old and supple, worn down from years of hard use and faded at the knees. Ginny had tried more than once to get him to bin them, claiming she'd buy him a new pair, but he hadn't let her. Instead, he'd compromised, wearing them only rarely and usually when he knew she wouldn't be at home.

He should have known then, he supposed, that things between them wouldn't last. But a long standing argument about a pair of old trousers hardly seemed relationship-breaking, even if it was an apt metaphor for their coupling. It had all been fighting and compromises that made no one happy, especially towards the end. Sighing, he continued, "I want a house, Hermione."

"You have one," she pointed out, carefully folding the brochure in half before sliding it into her bag. "Godric's Hollow - "

"Is in shambles," Harry finished, stepping lightly off the curb. Their rent-a-car, a late-model four-door sedan, sat nearby, parked a few doors down from the realtor's business office. He made his way towards it. "I haven't been there since just before the war ended, 'Mione. There's no telling what kind of work it needs; structural or interior. I don't have the time or the energy for that, at least not right now."

"You will one day," Hermione said, brushing hair from her eyes. Her normally bushy main had been done up into a messy bun, strands of loose hair curling into frizzy fly aways. "Which is why you shouldn't rule out leasing a flat for a while. Houses take a lot of work. Mum and dad are always complaining about amount of work they have to do. The garden alone gives them fits."

Giving a small smile, Harry shrugged, stopping beside their vehicle. "I'm not afraid of a little hard work," he assured, watching as his friend dug through her bag for the car keys. Despite the fact that they'd both lived in the muggle world most of their childhood, Hermione was the only one of them who'd learned how to drive. Her parents had insisted. "And anyway, I have a bit of an advantage over your parents: they can't use magic, I can."

"Nevertheless," she insisted, tugging out the keys and unlocking the doors. "It isn't going to be a cake walk. Especially if you're just looking for a holiday."

Opening the door, Harry slide inside, grabbing the safety harness and pulling it on. "I know that, but," he hesitated, hand sliding through his hair before glancing at her, eyes weary. "I need to get away for a while. Back home - there's just too much going on. Between the break-up with Ginny, quitting my job, and all the articles being printed in the Prophet, I feel like I'm up in the air without a broomstick."

"It isn't your fault," Hermione declared, firmly. "I know you think it is, but there's nothing you could have done. You and Ginny, you weren't meant to be, that's all."

"Tell that to Ron," he retorted, belly aching at the thought of his absent best friend. They hadn't spoken to one another in well over a fortnight, the red head's anger and confusion at his break-up with Ginny mounting to an almost fevered pitch before exploding into a horrible shouting match. Things had been said, most of which Harry regretted heartily, but it was too late to take them back and part of him didn't want to.

Hermione sighed, slipping the key into the ignition. "Give him time, Harry. It took him years to fully accept the idea of you two dating. Now that you've broken up, he doesn't know how to handle it."

That was true enough, he knew. Ron had never taken change well, especially change that impacted his life in some way. Even in the early years, when the three of them were just out of Hogwarts, free from the war and celebrating their survival, his friend had struggled with the idea that they were no longer students; that they were adults. That was where he and Ron were different.

Harry had, in a variety of ways, always felt like an adult. He'd had to be in order to survive. His life with the Dursleys was a testament to that. But Ron - Ron was different. Unlike Harry, the red head had grown up in a loving home, with plenty of family to shelter him from the outside world. The simple changes, the ebb and flow of different decisions being made, were distant to him and because of that, he struggled with facing them head on. Much like he struggled with his temper, which was, unfortunately, notoriously erratic.

Blowing out a soft breath, Harry nodded. "I'll give him as much time as he needs. But," he continued, shoulders relaxing in the warmth of the heater. "Only if you help me find a decent house around here."

Glancing at him, Hermione smiled, easing the car out of the parking spot and into the flow of traffic. "I think I can handle that. Just don't forget what I said: having a house is a lot of work, more than I think you realize. Don't come crying to me when you can't figure out the proper cleaning charms; I won't help you."

"Understood," Harry chuckled, relaxing back into his car seat. "I'll just owl Mrs. Weasley for them."

 Next: Part II.

March 2012

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