In The Middle of the Night
Summary: Ginny wakes up in the middle of the night one night the week after she moves in with Harry. What does she find?
If there was anything Ginny hated, it was being woken up in the middle of the night. She loved her sleep and dared anyone to disturb her sleep. There were only a few times in her life that she didn't snap at the person who woke her up. The first time she remembers is when Professor McGonagall woke her up after her father's attack with the snake right before Christmas her fourth year and any time Harry had woke her up before and after the war, after having a nightmare and needed to talk about it.
While she doesn't like being woken up in the middle of the night, she also wasn't a fan of waking up to the sound of shuffling at one in the morning, especially when the shuffling sounds like it was coming from the other side the flat and sounds as if someone is trying to break in.
She loves her sleep so much that when she didn't see Harry in bed beside her, she stayed still, convinced it was her mind playing around with her or a bird hitting the window. The floo was shut down like it was every night when she went to bed. Harry would open it the next morning.
To Ginny's annoyance, the noises don't stop and she realizes that the noise sounded more like a human and not really a noise that a burglar would make. With the wards Harry has on the place, she would have known that someone was trying to break in.
Ginny then realized that there is someone else in the flat with her. Harry was still up, having said he had some work he needed to get done before he came to bed. The flat had a third bedroom, which was too small to be a bedroom and Harry had turned it into a home office for the few occasions he brought work home. The only wards on the office were child proofing wards and ones to keep Teddy out of the home office.
Listening to the noise again, Ginny realized that they definitely belonged to Harry and that he might need her help.
She sat up and swung her legs over to the side of the bed and stood up, wobbly from her slumber and made her way out of the bedroom, she shared with Harry and towards the other side of the flat where the two other bedrooms and second bathroom were located. The noise now clearer, she realized that it sounded more like…..whimpering?
Instantly more awake, she peeked into the home office to find that Harry had turned the light off and put away his work, judging from the empty desk she saw thanks to the pale moonlight shining through the small window. Now realizing that the room was empty, Ginny felt her senses become alert as she checked the room that Teddy stayed in when he came to Harry's.
Seeing it empty like the home office, she turned around sharply and noticed the light in the second bathroom on and the door partly open. She listens more closely, noticing that the whimpers are indeed coming from the bathroom.
She paused outside the door, debating whether or not to go in. But she and Harry had been dating, technically, since her fifth year, Harry's sixth. In that time, minus the period they were separated due to the war and Harry being in on the run, she had taken care of him whenever he got sick.
From the stomach flu he came down with early in his sixth year to the horrible cold, he got back in the spring and all the migraines, stomach aches, and many bouts of the stomach flu in between. She had seen him at his worse. While he told her that he didn't want her seeing him like this, while at the same time all but begging for her to stay with him. She's taken care of him, even after she graduated from Hogwarts and was able to be Harry's primary emergency contact in case Harry got sick or injured on the job.
She was on first name bases with the ministry matron if that told her anything.
She leaned over to press her ear to the door and the noises are indeed Harry whimpering. She's heard it so much over the years that she recognized it instantly and wanted nothing more but to make whatever was paining Harry to go away.
Gently as to not make the door creak when she opens it, she pushed the door open enough to peek inside, hoping she doesn't startle him.
"Harry?" she said, softly.
Harry is sitting on the floo by the toilet, clutching his stomach and whimpering quietly, his eyes squinted shut. He looks up at Ginny when he hears his name and jumps a little at the sudden appearance of his fiancé.
"Oh, Harry, what happened? Are you sick?" Ginny feels a panic rise inside her as she calmly rushes to him and sinks down to the floor beside Harry. "What's wrong, baby?"
She ran her hand along the side of his face, gently, forcing him to look up. Noticing that he feels warm, she laid her hand on Harry's forehead. "He feels warm,"Ginny thought.
"My stomach hurts, really bad," Harry replied, followed by a slight moan of pain and hands are pressed tighter to his middle. He leaned his head back and rested his head against the cool bathroom wall. Even though Ginny had been with him countless times, he still didn't want Ginny to see him like this. He didn't like showing any weakness in front of Ginny. He especially didn't want her to see him being weak because of a stomach ache.
Only he's just too exhausted to care at the moment.
"How bad? St. Mungo's A&E?" Ginny asked, concern evident in her voice. Her thoughts went to the last time had seen Harry in this much pain. Ron had woken her up in the middle of the night one night in her fifth year and told her that Harry was having severe abdominal pain and wanted her.
She rushed to the sixth year boy's dorm to find Harry in curled up in his bed and in pain. Neville had gone to get Professor McGonagall and soon she found herself on her way to the hospital wing.
She will never forget the terrified look on Harry's face as they rushed him down to the hospital wing and when he was diagnosed with appendicitis and he needed to have surgery.
"No." Harry breathed heavily. "It just hurts a lot."
Ginny doesn't know what to do. She knew appendicitis was out as Harry already had his appendix removed. Ginny had spent the entire time that Harry was in the hospital wing by his side, taking care of him while he was recovering from surgery and stayed with him when he returned to Gryffindor tower.
She figured he had caught some kind of stomach bug. Apart from the time Harry had a nasty intestinal infection, she had never seen him in so much pain. Harry rarely ever got sick and when he did, it seemed to hit him hard.
Ginny is driven out of her thoughts as Harry lurched forward, leaning into the toilet and vomiting once more. The smell doesn't bother Ginny, considering she has taken care of Harry many times, as she started to rub soothing circles on his back, in an attempt to provide comfort.
When Harry finished, he took a piece of toilet paper and wiped his mouth, before sinking back against the wall in a curled up position. Ginny wasted no time and pulled him into her arms, letting Harry rest against her shoulder rather the wall of tiles that lined the area around the toilet.
They had been meaning to take out the tiles and fix it like the rest of the walls in the bathroom.
Harry whimpered again, clutching his stomach, his eyes falling shut. He felt Ginny's hand on his forehead.
"You're feverish," Ginny murmured, pushing the damp hair from his face. "Maybe it's just a bug. You couldn't have eaten something bad, because I cleaned out the refrigerator and we both ate the same thing." She started stroking Harry's back up and down, kissing the top of his head. She knew it was best to keep Harry still if he was nauseous, something she had learned during her times of playing nursemaid to her boyfriend.
They sat in silence with Ginny holding him and rubbing his back and Harry occasionally whimpering in pain.
"Do you think you're okay for now?" Ginny asked, referring to the previous vomiting session. Harry moved to sit up straighter, pulling away from Ginny. He moves with caution as he checks to see if the nausea is still there. He notices that in terms of nausea, he feels better, but the pain is still there. It feels like there is something in his abdomen scrunching his stomach from the inside.
"I think so," Harry said, voice shaking slightly.
"Do you want to move back to bed?" Ginny inquired.
"Yeah," Harry murmured as he nodded his head.
Ginny wrapped an arm around Harry's waist and helped support his weight as he pulled himself up to his feet. She held him steady when he started wobbling.
Once on his feet, she helped guide him to the sink where he cleaned his mouth out, sloshing cold water in his mouth and spit it out in the sink. The cold water made Harry aware how cold, he suddenly felt and started to shiver in Ginny's grip as they left the chilly bathroom which felt like Antarctica at the moment.
"Let's get you to bed," Ginny whispered, tightened her grip as she guided Harry out of the bathroom into the warmer hallway and towards their bedroom, almost fully supporting his weight.
"I need to lay down," Harry said, starting to hunch over, almost as if he wants to curl up while standing.
"We're almost there sweetie." Ginny finally reached their bed and slowly lowered Harry into bed. Once he was sitting down on the bed, he laid down on his side, curling up in a ball.
Ginny turned around, heading towards the bureau and got out a Weasley sweater of Harry's and approached the bed. She helped Harry sit up long enough to slip the sweater over his head and then pick up her wand and added a warming charm to the sweater to help bring some warmth to her cold boyfriend.
After Harry laid back down, Ginny tucked the duvet around him before she returned to her side of the bed and laid down, pulling the duvet up over herself, feeling the sleepiness return to her almost instantly.
It was this feeling of sleepiness that she retired to bed before Harry did.
She checked on Harry. He laid curled up, hugging his aching middle with a look of discomfort on his face. He looked sick and exhausted. As with any time Harry was sick, she wished there was something to do to help Harry feel better and to take his pain away.
"Can you lay still for me baby? I'll do a diagnostic charm and see what's going on."
Harry turned to lie on his back and watched as Ginny pulled up his shirt and waved her wand over his abdomen. It glowed a light green, meaning it was inclusive and Harry most likely had eaten something that didn't quite agree with him.
"It seems that you've eaten something that didn't quite agree with you," Ginny said, reading the results from the diagnostic charm.
"I don't know what it was that I ate to make me sick."
Ginny summoned a stomach soother and uncorked it. Harry pushed himself up, supporting his weight on his hand and took the potion with the other. He swallowed it and handed the vial back to Ginny. He laid back down as Ginny slipped into the bathroom to drop the vial into the trash can.
She returned to the bedroom and laid down beside Harry.
If there was anything that Ginny didn't do it was to let Harry suffer alone, no matter what was ailing him. She couldn't sleep knowing Harry was suffering beside her. She wanted to do something to help him feel better.
When Harry was sick, Ginny would wait until Harry fell asleep before she went to sleep. She would wait until Harry was for sure asleep and then she would sleep, only she would be half asleep so she can hear Harry if he needed her.
Ginny still remembers the first time she ever took care of Harry. It was a learning experience for her. But it was after that she learned that no one, besides Ron and Hermione, had ever taken care of him. But still, he let her take care of him.
He let her be with him when he vomited, repeatedly. He let her wipe his face or sponge his fevered head. He let her rub his aching stomach when the cramps got worse and even before. He wanted nothing more but to feel better and for the pain from the cramps again. He asked her to stay with him while he was sick and she took care of him.
After that, Harry asked for her when he got sick, wanting her and only her, sometimes with the help of Ron and Hermione.
Ginny came back to the present when she felt Harry shift, shuffling closer to her quietly and gently, resting his head against hers. Harry snuggled against her, sighing.
"Gin?" he whispered.
"Can you rub my stomach?" he asked, sounding younger than his twenty-year-old self.
Ginny waited until Harry was lying on his back before she searched for his middle with her hand under the duvet. Once she finds the hem of his shirt, she pulls it up knowing in her experience that rubbing his stomach through his shirt didn't quite do the job. She then places her hand on his bare stomach and starts rubbing slow, soft circles on his stomach, being careful not to be too rough in her attempt ease the pain.
As she rubs the circles on Harry's stomach, she remembers back when she first took care of Harry when he was sick and in an attempt to help him feel better, she gently started rubbing his stomach. At first, Harry tensed and then when he realized that it actually felt pretty good, he let himself relax and he fell asleep.
She smiled as she remembered another time when Harry was sick and when she paused rubbing his stomach, he asked her, "Why did you stop?"
Harry lets his eyes drop as he feels the pain subside. He's comfortable, the bed is warm and so is Ginny.
He feels loved and that just makes it all the better.
The next morning, Harry woke up to find his stomach didn't hurt and was no longer cramping as it had the night before. However, his stomach felt sore from the pain and cramping he had suffered from the night before. His throat didn't feel any different than when he had woken up the morning before and unlike other times when he had spent most of the night leaning over the toilet.
He sat up on the side of the bed, taking a stock of himself. He really did feel better than he did the night before. He felt tired, understandably so, as he didn't get much sleep last night and the last time he had looked at the clock, it was two in the morning.
Ginny stayed up with him after she discovered he was sick. Harry regretted not telling her sooner. He sometimes has to remind himself that he didn't need to suffer in sickness alone anymore. He had Ginny.
Harry stood up carefully and headed towards the kitchen.
He found Ginny in the kitchen, making some toast and porridge. She turned around when she heard his footsteps and smiled at him. She walked over to him, wrapping her arm around him.
"How are you feeling this morning? Better?" She asked hopefully.
"Yeah, my stomach just feels a little sore," Harry replied, sitting down at the table. Ginny placed a bowl of porridge on the table in front of him. She frowned slightly when Harry got up suddenly, but relaxed when Harry called over his shoulder that he needed to go to the bathroom.
After he relieved himself and washed his hands, he returned to the table and sat down in his seat.
"I called Robards for you and he said that you can have the day off," Ginny said, sitting down in the chair in front of him. "You didn't sleep much last night. You were a wreck."
"Thanks, Gin," Harry said, sarcastically.
"Harry, you were sick. It's understandable."
"I still don't know what caused me to get sick," Harry admitted.
"Maybe you won't eat whatever made you sick again?" Ginny suggested.
"I hope so," Harry said. "Maybe I'll figure it out sometime."
Silence followed as Harry and Ginny started to eat breakfast. Harry broke the silence after a couple of minutes had passed.
"Thanks, Gin. Really, thanks for taking care of me," Harry said seriously. "You took really good care of me."
"Harry, I've taken care of you when you were sick many times. When you're sick, I want to be able to take care of you. To make you feel better. To comfort you. You will be my husband and I will take care of you for the rest of my life.
"I love you," Harry murmured. He leaned over and kissed her cheek. She cupped his cheeks and kissed him on the lips.
"I love you, too," Ginny said. "Always remember that."
AN: Sorry for the delay. I had hit a writer's block on this series. I hope to update this more often as I have a few more ideas.