Author Pre-Chapter Commentary:

If you're new to this fic, you can skip this commentary and just dive into the chapter.

To everyone who remember this fic from long ago:

Hey all, man o'man I know it's been about an eon since I last updated. Do any of you even remember this story existed? Well, I don't blame you for being mad (if you are). Fact is, I've gone ahead and done something I said I hate. I write a story and instead of updating, I leave it for a millennia. Well, I'm sorry. I can't say it was for total neglect on my part though. After Christmas, I came back from vacation and was suddenly hit with an intense dose of university. Yes folks, the disease known as "university"; the cause of many, many headaches, alcoholism, and a near nervous breakdown. Actually, the nervous breakdown DID happen. Boy was I burnt out. You can't imagine the workload I had to endure....well, for some of you I guess you can, and for some, you will find out eventually. University is a disease, folks. A disease ONLY curable by sticking through it until you receive a degree. For me, this disease will last a while longer yet.

Anyway, since all that time between my last update and now, I've had very little to think about when is came to this fic. I had to go back and re-read everything I wrote, which I absolutely hated because I'm such a terrible writer. The only reason I wrote this initially was because I had a case of insomnia and since I'm such a Harry Potter fan I decided to give writing fan fiction a try. I do not consider it a chore and have found it oddly refreshing.

I know it's been a while, so I guess you can put yourself in Ron's shoes. Some of you have been waiting for months; Ron's been waiting for YEARS. Does that help? No, I didn't think so.

Since I've most likely alienated anyone who read this fic in the past, I don't expect very many to know what I'm talking about. Oh well, I guess it's time to get the show on the road.

I had other things in mind to put here but it really didn't seem to fit right now. I scrapped most everything I wanted to try in this chapter and what I initially wrote (before my PC crashed) went with it.

Disclaimer: I don't own Harry Potter; Warner Brothers and JK Rowling does. Sadly, Steve Kloves gets to write the screenplays to the films and gets to ruin Ron's character in the process. Since the film series seems to like changing directors, I would in no way object to a change in a screenwriter as well. In fact, I welcome it with open arms.

Chapter 23

Ron, Harry, Hermione and Ginny entered the Room of Requirement and began to immediately make preparations for the arrival of the rest of the DA members. Since the weather was harsh outside, it was highly likely for there to be a lot of members showing up tonight. Harry even suggested they make the room extra bigger to make sure everyone had enough space to practise whatever he had planned.

Not long after they had finished preparing the room, DA members started arriving in droves. Sure enough, there were way more members tonight than regularly scheduled meetings.

"Listen up folks!" Harry shouted to the crowd of chattering DA members. They all quieted and turned to hear what he had to say.

"Alright, thanks for coming on such short notice," said Harry no longer shouting. "Um, tonight we're going to try something a little bit different from what we usually do during these sessions. We're - -"

"How different?" Zacharias Smith shouted from the back, cutting Harry off.

"I was just about to explain. Don't interrupt, Smith," said Harry who sounded perturbed . "Now, before I was rudely cut off, I just was gonna say that tonight we're going to do a bit of duelling instead of our old regular routine."

An animated murmur shot through the crowd just as Harry had said the word "duelling."

"Settle down, folks," said Harry, his voice having to compete with the loud babbling of DA members. "Ok, now I know we don't duel often but I trust that everyone here remembers the rules we set before. This is a friendly duel, so remember to take it easy on your partners."

The DA started to talk quite animatedly again and once again Harry had to shout over everyone.

"Alright, pair up and I want each pair to space themselves from other couples accordingly!" said Harry very loudly.

As soon as Harry had finished, everyone started to move and find partners. Harry paired up with Ginny, Luna Lovegood had asked Hermione to be her partner, and Ron was once again left to partner up with Neville; not that Ron minded of course. Besides Herbology being Neville's best subject, Ron could honestly say that Neville was exceptionally good at duelling as well.

"I guess it's you and me again, Ron," said Neville, very timid.

"Cool," said Ron trying to lift Neville's spirits, "c'mon let's find somewhere good."

They walked over to a nearby spot that was very suitable. The space was satisfactory and they were about 40 feet from the next group, Harry and Ginny.

Ron stood at one end of the room and Neville took his place and stood about 20 paces across from him. They both took out their wands and began taking their correct postures.

"Ready?" Neville asked.

"On the count of three," said Ron, "One....two.....THREE!"

"Expelliarmus!" Neville shouted, causing Ron's wand to fly immediately into his awaiting hands. There was a hint of euphoria expressed on Neville's face, but at an instant it was quickly wiped off when Ron countered with a surprise of his own.

"Tarantallegra!" Ron shouted, holding out the palm of his hand and directing it at Neville.

Just as Ron had shouted the curse, Neville's legs had started moving erratically, doing a very exotic jig. It would have been a routine move on Ron's part if there wasn't a slight complication in the matter. Ron's wand was still in Neville's hand. Everyone stopped what they were doing and immediately looked over in the direction on Ron and Neville. Everybody except Harry and Hermione laughed at Neville's dance routine.

"How did you do that without using your wand?!" Hermione asked, her eyes almost coming out of their sockets. Everyone else just stood pointing and laughing at poor Neville, who had started to sweat heavily now from his erratic jig.

"Oh, it's simple really. It just takes a bit of practice is all," said Ron modestly, his ears feeling slightly hot.

"Um, Ron, could you, help--" said an exhausted looking Neville frantically trying to keep his balance. He was still dancing and holding onto the two wands.

"Oh!" said Ron, "You can stop dancing now, Neville. Sorry about that."

With a loud snap from Ron's fingers, Neville stopped dancing. Everyone had stopped laughing now but they continued to stare, and Ron was beginning to feel more and more uncomfortable.

"Uh, everything's ok. Let's just continue on with what we were doing," Harry told the crowd uneasily.

As soon as everyone started practising again, Harry and Hermione pulled Ron and Neville over a corner.

"Wow Ron, that was really wicked! Neville said excitedly still grasping for breath, "how'd you manage to do that without your wand?"

"Yes Ron, just how DID you just do that without using your wand?" said Hermione narrowing her eyes and glaring at him as if he had just committed a terrible crime. Harry just stood there eyeing him suspiciously.

"Well, it's no big deal really," said Ron, ears feeling hotter than before, "I've just been putting in some extra time practising wandless magic is all,"

"But-but how in Merlin's name did you ACTUALLY do that, Ron?" asked Hermione shaking her head exasperatedly. "It's near impossible for one to perform a spell like that without the use of a wand."

"It's not impossible, obviously," said Harry.

"No, it's not impossible. It just takes a long time and a hell of a lot of practice," said Ron taking his wand back from Neville.

"Since when did you find all this time to do extra practice? You've never once practised here alone," said Hermione.

Ron could tell Hermione was getting agitated while Harry and Neville looked on with curious expressions.

"As a matter of fact, I HAVE been doing some extra practice.... alone," said Ron. "You've just never noticed that's all."

Hermione looked at a loss for words. Ron could tell she was hurriedly trying to think of something else to ask and interrogate him further. But before Hermione could say another word- -

"Neville, do you mind joining up with Hermione and Luna and letting Ron and I have a go?" Harry spoke up.

"Not at all. Hermione?"

"Um, yes, ok then." said Hermione looking torn between going and staying to further question Ron. Thankfully, she chose the former and headed over to the spot where Ron and Neville had practised before.

"So, are you going to tell me what's up?" asked Harry with Hermione and Neville out of ear shot.

"Um, there's really nothing to tell other than what I've already told you," said Ron, ears cooling a bit. "I've just been practising a lot more often."

Harry didn't seem to buy it.

"Oh, ok, fine!" said Ron, ears reddening again. "But I'll tell you later, alright?"

Harry sighed and nodded his head. "Shall we continue then?" he asked.

Ron grinned, pointed to an open spot and said "lead the way."

Harry and Ron took their duelling positions and after a count of three, Harry had swiftly shot Ron a curse.

"Locomotor Mortis!" Harry shouted.

As quickly as Harry had said the incantation, Ron's legs had locked together in a tight bind. But Ron was equally as speedy; with a quick wave of his wand he had unlocked his legs and started with hex of his own.

"Impedimenta!" he shouted. Harry dodged the spell, but only just in time before a jet of yellow light bolted past his head. He sent another curse back toward Ron, but he too had dodged it with ease.

It was like watching an incredibly fast paced quidditch match. Both Ron and Harry were now sending and sidestepping each other's curses and hexes with neither one of them really getting the better of the other. Both seem to be lightning fast with their wands and feet, and both were demonstrating a great ability of blocking and avoiding stunning spells. Whenever either one got hit with an immobilization charm, it was swiftly cast away with ease. Ron and Harry were going so fast and so hard now that people stopped what they were doing and just concentrated on what Harry and Ron were doing instead; it was quite an amazing sight indeed and the tension was riding high. It was a good ten minutes before they both stopped to take a breather when Ron and Harry quickly dropped their wands, bent over and grabbed their knees. Panting and wheezing heavily, they both looked up from the floor and were surprised to see that the entire group of DA members were now gazing at them; many with awed expressions on their faces.

"Whoa!" said Colin Creevey who managed to get the first word in. Colin looked as though he had just woken up on Christmas morning and discovered an enormous amount of presents.

"That was bloody brilliant!" said Dean; and just as soon as he said "brilliant," everyone else started shouting praise and shooting a massive applause at the direction of Ron and Harry.

Still feeling out of breath, Ron and Harry both picked up their wands and straightened up. Harry was a bit taken aback at the attention, but Ron didn't think really much of it. From the corner of his eye he saw someone with liberal amounts of bushy hair now coming closer toward him.

"Ron, Harry, are you alright?" Hermione asked feverishly. She had to shout over the booming applause the rest of the DA were still giving Ron and Harry.

'Yeah, I'm fine," Harry answered with a shout of his own. "Ron?"

Ron didn't give a verbal answer. He simply gave a thumbs up and nodded that he was ok. He hunched over again and put his hands on his legs for support. Hermione quickly summoned a chair over and forced Ron to take a seat on it.

Harry meanwhile wiped the sweat off his face and held up a hand as if to tell the DA to settle down. When the DA finally stopped cheering, Harry spoke.

'Um, well, I think we should call it a night, yeah?" said Harry. "It's getting late and I know everyone here is exhausted, I know I am."

Everyone laughed and once again cheered.

'Ok, ok, that's enough," said Harry awkwardly. "Uh, well, everyone should gather their things and just head back to their common rooms. We'll let you know when the next meeting will take place."

"Make it soon, Harry!" said Lavender, "tonight's meeting was wonderful!"

"Yeah, make it real soon, Harry. Next weekend even, you and Ron were brilliant!" said Justin.

"Yeah, ok everybody, perhaps next weekend then, now clear out," said Harry with a bit of agitation in his voice.

"Well see you back in the dormitory," said Dean as he and Seamus were the last few to leave.

When everyone had finally had cleared out, only Harry, Ron, Hermione, Ginny and Neville remained.

"Well, you two were certainly looking tip top tonight," said Ginny grinning and placing a hand on Ron's shoulder.

"That was really some fight you put up there, Ron," said Harry sounding impressed and confused at the same time. "I've duelled with you loads of times before and you've NEVER had me moving like you had me moving tonight."

"Nah. I guess I caught you on a bad day, Harry," said Ron tiredly waving his hand.

"Rubbish!" said Harry exasperatedly, "You were just as good, if not better than me tonight!"

Ron's ears reddened and he smiled sheepishly.

"That was wicked, you two. Ron, you gotta tell us how you did wandless magic," said Neville excitedly.

"Yes, Ron. Tell us?" said Hermione placing her hands on her hips.

Ron was exhausted and was in no mood to explain how it was that he had learned how to moderately control wandless magic. He'd just have to stall, "Um, it's no big deal, really. I'll, uh, tell you later when we get back to the common room," he said restlessly.

Hermione looked at him with narrowed eyes and was about to retort when Ron spoke again,

"I just need to get my bearings straight, Hermione," said Ron knowing that Hermione wasn't about to let it rest.

"Yes, you're right. You can explain later," said Hermione who looked torn between letting up or saying something else to push Ron into explaining.

"Ok then, let's put everything away and get ready to leave shall we?" said Harry putting his wand in his back pocket.

After clearing away everything in the Room of Requirement, Ron, Harry, Hermione, Ginny and Neville left and started heading back to Gryffindor tower to retire of the evening. Ron, knowing full well that he'll be questioned as soon as he step foot in Gryffindor Tower, wanted no part in going back just yet. He'll just have to make up some reasonable excuse not to accompany the rest back.

"Hey, you four go on without me. I'm gonna do a bit of patrolling before I go back to Gryffindor Tower," said Ron stopping all of a sudden in front of the statue of Troy the merciful.

"What? Right now?" Harry asked.

"Ron, we don't have to do patrols right now. Ernie and Hannah agreed to take our patrol routes, remember?" said Hermione looking rather impatient.

"Um, yeah, I remember," said Ron uneasily, "I just think it'll be a better idea if we do a few rounds. You know, just in case,"

"Just in case what, exactly," said Ginny looking dubious.

"Just in case....there are....a few students who decide to break the rules," said Ron trying to think of something to say that'll convince them.

Harry, Hermione and Ginny were now shooting Ron looks apprehension. Neville looked impassive.

"Uh, ok. I guess, we should just go back and wait for you...?" Neville asked, looking uncomfortable.

Ron let out a quiet breath and nodded a little too fervently. This again drew odd looks.

"Fine, well, we'll just head on back and wait for you and Hermione to get back," said Harry breaking the silence.

"No!" said Ron nervously, "I mean, she doesn't have to accompany me. I'll be real quick and - -"

"No, I'm coming with you, Ron. I'm a prefect too, remember?" said Hermione. She was clearly annoyed at Ron's decision to suddenly patrol the halls of Hogwarts.

"Look, I'm not going to take very long, alright. I really don't need any company," Ron said oddly authoritatively.

"Ok, fine." said Hermione brisk manner, "we'll just wait for back at Gryffindor Tower."

Something wasn't right, Ron thought. Hermione never lets off that easily. Usually, Hermione would argue, argue, and argue some more until she either got her way, or just didn't want to argue anymore. In this case, she didn't put up very much of a fight. By the looks on Harry, Ginny and Neville's faces, even they thought it was very suspicious. Hermione gave a small smile and started walking back toward Gryffindor.

Ginny and Neville nodded and they too followed Hermione.

"Uh, see you later, Ron" said Harry warily. He made a small wave and started running slowly to catch up with the rest.

Ron let out a loud breath and felt like a bit of weight had lifted from his back. Now he was free to do what he always did since being trapped in time; explore the rest of the school.

For as long as Ron could remember, Hogwarts had been nearly impossible to fully explore. Even during his time there, Ron has never been able to fully grasp all the secrets and engrossing details hidden within the school. Every time Ron went out to investigate, he always discovered something new. Whether it was new room, a new passageway, or even a new statue; it was always fascinating to him to uncover something new. It's what kept him sane during his time being stuck in time. If there wasn't something remotely "new" to add to Ron's psyche, he'd go mad for sure.

After about 10 minutes of just wandering around the halls, Ron decided to go take a little tour of the dungeons. Just as Ron was about to walk down the steps, he heard a sound; his instincts were telling him that was being followed. Before Ron took another step, he slowly pulled out his wand and held it lazily by his leg.

"I can hear you. I know you're following me," Ron said as he turned to face the direction the sound emanated from.

Not long after, the subject stepped out from the behind shadows and confronted Ron.

Post-Chapter Commentary:

Still here? Terrible writing hasn't driven you away? Well, since you've stuck it out I guess you can read my post-chapter commentary.

This chapter is pretty bad, actually. It was meant to give a little taste of Ron's new found ability. You can pretty much expect the guy to learn all sorts of new things while being trapped reliving the same day over and over again for years and years. It's mostly filler, but it does move it forward. This chapter was originally a lot longer, but I decided to cut it down to half and post it as two separate chapters. The next one will be up pretty soon. Check the bio for updates and info.

Next chapter: Ron will take us on a tour of Hogwarts and reveal a few things hidden within the walls.

By the way, I'm a tad dyslexic, so if you spot any grammatical errors, just try and ignore it. I didn't bother putting this chapter through a beta.

Thanks for reading.

Take care.