Disclaimer: I own nothing you recognize, only the story line!
Author's Note: This is set in the trio's seventh year. Ginny skips a grade and joins Harry, Ron, and Hermione in their adventures during their last semesters. PG-13 for teen pregnancy and other such mature content. Read, review, and enjoy!
Chapter One: Privet Drive
The boy lying on the lumpy mattress in the smallest bedroom of number 4 Privet Drive was day-dreaming, and not for the first time, with a small smile plastered on his face. This was not an uncommon way to find him on the lazy days of summer, for besides the numerous chores, the occasional bit of homework, and the eventual and inevitable pacing of the hardwood floors, there was not much else to do. He was tall with wild, uncontrollable black hair, piercing green eyes, and a peculiar scar in the shape of a lightning bolt upon his forehead. If he were to be perfectly honest with himself, he would confess that the mark above his right eyebrow was the only bit of his appearance that he liked. The girls at Hogwarts, however, seemed to have an entirely different opinion of his looks. They swooned over his well-muscled, yet surprisingly lean, body, a product of six years as the Gryffindor seeker. They worshipped his gleaming smile, ever-tousled hair, and shining eyes from behind lowered lashes. With shy glances they took in his graceful swagger as he weaved through the crowded corridors and strategically dodged whatever Peeves had found to throw at passing students. All these things were, unbeknownst to him, greatly admired and appreciated by what appeared to be the entire female population of Hogwarts, School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
But Harry Potter, for that is the name of the boy, was not at all concerned about such menial things as the number of girls who would give their wand arm to be with him. At the moment he was thinking solely about his upcoming escape from Privet Drive, hopefully for the final time. In, checking his watch for the hundredth time that morning, precisely three hours and 14 minutes the Weasley's would arrive to take him to the Burrow, where he truly belonged.
Rolling off the bed and resuming the pacing he had abandoned only moments before, Harry let his mind wander freely. Unfortunately, where it took him he was reluctant to go. With a pang, his thoughts landed on Voldemort. Having been able to keep in touch with the wizarding world more so than in previous years, Harry knew from Dumbledore's letters that the Dark Lord had been uncharacteristically quiet and subtle in his actions. The death toll was minimal, partly due to the Ministry's eventual acceptance that he had, indeed, returned and the precautions that they had taken, but also because it appeared Voldemort was biding his time.
What the bloody hell is he waiting for? Harry demanded, his frustration causing him to kick his trunk.
He swore under his breath as his toes began to sting from the impact and painfully walked over to his bed-side table to retrieve his wand. Having turned seventeen a week before, Harry had wasted little time applying for his apparation license and even less time utilizing his new privileges as an adult wizard.
With the flick of his wrist and the whispered command of "icicular", Harry dulled the throb of his jammed toes. Able to walk freely without pain once again, he turned his attention to the array of school supplies littering his desk and floor. He had attempted to distract himself with work while he waited for his transportation to the Burrow, but had quickly tired of listing all the ways blast-ended skrewts were useful to humans because, frankly, he couldn't think of any. Harry now used his wand to whisk the rest of his belongings into the air and dump them unceremoniously into his trunk atop the mess of garments. Having discovered a way to convert his galleons, knuts, and sickles into muggle pounds the prior summer, Harry now was the proud owner of clothing that not only fit properly, but was also trendy. At the moment, he wore a pair of dark blue jeans and a black shirt with The Weird Sisters scrawled across it.
He knelt on the floor and reached under his desk, sure that he had accidentally dropped his glasses behind it the night before. With his new muggle contacts, he only needed his spectacles for emergencies. Pulling them out, he dusted them absent-mindedly and then tossed them in with his school supplies before closing the lid of his trunk.
Flopping lazily back down on his bed, Harry returned his thoughts to the Weasley family. He couldn't wait to see Ron, Mrs. and Mr.Weasley, the twins, Ginny, and Hermione, who was bound to show up at the Burrow at some point over summer vacation. Shaking his head with a grin, Harry relaxed into the comfort of memories shared with his two best friends, eager to rejoin them and share what promised to be some excellent adventures.
The journey to The Burrow was uneventful to say the least. He was greeted by Mr. Weasley, ushered into a small black car (which seemed entirely too large on the inside to fit within the tiny outward frame), and driven in record time to his new lodgings.
"Oh Harry!" Mrs. Weasley cried as he opened the kitchen door, one hand clasped to her bosom, the other reaching toward him to pull him into a tight hug. "It's so lovely to see you, dear. Look at you, all skin and bone. Well, I can shortly remedy that!"
Although "skin and bone" were hardly applicable to his well-defined physique, Harry figured it gave her pleasure to dote over him, so he grinned cheekily, returned the hug, and gave the older red-head a peck on the cheek.
The kitchen was as warm and comfortable as he had remembered, with the familiar smell of food tantalizing his senses and making him suddenly very aware of his hunger.
"Well, now's as good a time as ever to start fattening me up," Harry said good-naturedly, eyeing the steaming pots on the stove.
"Dinner will be ready in about twenty minutes. Why don't you bring you bags upstairs to Ron's room and get yourself settled? I will call everyone down shortly," Mrs. Weasley said, walking back to the stove and pointing her wand at various spoons to increase the speed of their mixing.
Grabbing his trunk, Hedwig's empty bird cage, and his broomstick, Harry apparated into Ron's bedroom with a loud pop. In the disorientation of changing locations so quickly, Harry stumbled into a hard object amid yells of "Bloody hell" and the scampering of feet.
Regaining his balance, a very shocked Harry came face-to-face with two ruffled and red-faced friends, hair sticking in odd angles and clothes slightly askew.
To Be Continued…