A/N Sorry about the cliffy but I just couldn't resist...at least it didn't take me nearly as long to post this chapter as it did to post chapter 11 right? Hopefully it will never take me that long again...lol...so I know you are all dying to find out what happens (at least I'm hoping you are) so here it is...And a BIG thanks to my Beta Jamie for getting this done so quickly….
From the moment she had stormed out of Harry's quarters she had felt guilty for blowing up at him. After all, she thought as she paced back and forth in the common room, which was deserted due to the late hour, it's not his fault that I am so on edge...Alright maybe it is half his fault she conceded, after all, it does take two to…uh…tango, but it's my fault that he doesn't know about my suspicion. I should have told him last night when I first realized it.
She stopped her pacing and collapsed into one of the oversized arm chairs sitting in front of the fire. Deciding she couldn't wait until morning to tell him, she quickly scrambled back up out of the chair and scribbled out a short note for Hedwig to take to her husband.
"You're what?" Harry asked, bringing Ginny back to the present.
"I'm late," Ginny repeated for the third time.
Harry stood frozen as he absorbed those two little words and all their implications.
"How late?" he asked after a moment.
"Um...like two weeks late."
"That's late," Harry said simply.
"It is," she responded.
"So this means that you might be..." he trailed off as if saying the word aloud might make it true.
"Pregnant," she finished.
Silence fell between them as the single word reverberated against the walls seeming to echo harshly through their thoughts.
"I tell you that I might be pregnant and all you can say is oh!" Ginny exploded.
"Well, what do you want me to say?! How did that happen? When did it happen? Cause it had to have happened when you were home for winter holiday and I was kind of there for that part!" Harry exploded back.
"Stop yelling at me!" Ginny yelled.
"I'm not yelling at you!" Harry shouted back.
"Yes, you are!"
"No, I'm not!"
"Why are we both shouting?!"
"I don't know!"
Ginny threw her hands up in frustration and marched over to the couch in front of the fire, both of which the Room of Requirement had provided. Harry quickly followed her and they both sat down on opposite ends of the sofa, a good three feet of space between them. Neither of them even attempted to make eye contact with each other as they instead chose to stare into the fire watching the flames slowly devour the logs. Both were contemplating how this new development could potentially change everything.
"Harry," Ginny said after a few minutes of uneasy silence, "I'm not ready for this. I know we both said that we want children, but I'm only seventeen years old, I'm not ready to be somebody's mother. There are things I wanted to do with my life before we started a family, I wanted some time just to be married to you," she said suddenly sounding very tired.
"And what is your family going to say? They don't even know that we are married yet," Harry added just as blandly.
"What are we going to do?" she wondered aloud. "There is no way we can hide this, I'm going to be showing before I graduate in June."
"I honestly don't know," Harry replied. "I guess we're just going to have to figure something out."
"Well obviously," she replied sarcastically.
"Ginny," he said turning to her, "I don't know what you want me to say, but I'm trying my hardest. This has all taken me a bit by surprise and I wasn't really expecting to be told I'm going to be a father at eighteen either."
"I know and I'm sorry," Ginny said as tears came to her eyes. "I'm just scared and I don't know what to do."
Harry quickly closed the gap between them and gathered Ginny into his arms as she let go of her tears. "I know, I'm sorry too. I might not have taken the news as well as I could or should have. But I love you and I know we will get through this, because I believe that we can get through anything as long as we have each other. Alright?"
"Alright," she responded sniffling.
"Okay, so let's start at the beginning," Harry said after a moment. "When did you find out about…you know…" he trailed off, still unable to say the word.
"Well, I just realized last night how late I was," Ginny replied. "And then that combined with the fact I haven't been feeling well and I've been so tired lately-"
"Wait…So you haven't taken a test or anything yet?" Harry interrupted, suddenly feeling like he had found a loop hole.
"No, I haven't," Ginny admitted. "I just assumed."
"Okay, so we shouldn't get all worked up if we don't even know for sure yet," he said practically.
"You're right," Ginny agreed suddenly feeling lighter. "We won't worry about this until I can take a potion." She paused and her countenance darkened slightly, "But where am I supposed to get a pregnancy potion? I can't very well go ask Madam Pomfrey for it."
"Hold on a sec," he replied quickly, standing up and walking over to the book shelf. He wasn't overly surprised to find the exact book he needed, the Room of Requirement was just like that. "Found it," he announced after flipping through the pages for a few moments, "and there doesn't seem to be anything in here that doesn't come in any regular potions kit and it doesn't seem particularly difficult to brew."
"But it has a twenty eight hour brew time," Ginny pointed out, "so even if we start it now, it won't even be ready until seven o'clock tomorrow morning."
"Then lets get it started now then," Harry said feeling better now that he was able to take charge of something.
"Harry?" Ginny called softly from where she was sitting on the settee.
"Yes my love," he replied, not bothering to look at her as he rummaged through the ingredient cupboard.
"Do you regret marrying me? It seems like all it's brought is problems."
This caught Harry's attention as he spun around to look at his wife incredulously, not believing that she might actually think that. When the look on her face confirmed that this was an actual fear of hers, Harry quickly crossed the room so that he was kneeling in front of her taking small pale hands in his larger ones.
"Ginny," he told her seriously, "I have never, not even for one second, regretted marrying you. It was the best decision I ever made and I would do it again in a heartbeat. I never want you doubt that ever, alright?"
Harry hadn't been able to go back to sleep that night and it showed in his features the next morning. He practically stumbled down to the Great Hall the next morning, barely aware of his surroundings, his eyes blurry and his hair even more rebellious than usual. As he sat down on the teachers' dais he searched the Gryffindor table for his wife, curious to see if she was in the same condition that he was in, but a quick scan up and down the table revealed that she wasn't even in the Great Hall.
As he sat sullenly attempting to eat his porridge, trying to not to worry about Ginny, he couldn't help but over hear a bit of the conversation Professor Sinistra was having with McGonagall.
"I truly never would have expected that from her," the Astronomy professor mentioned in conspiratorial tones.
"I agree, she is so young and always seemed like such a good girl, it's such a shame that she let herself get mixed up in something like this," the deputy headmistress agreed.
"Well I blame him, the fact that he was involved doesn't surprise me in the least, it's the fact that he was able to drag her into this that I find so shocking."
Two seats over a stunned Harry Potter choked on his muffin.
"I know, if Mr. Sayer is such a problem as a third year, I am loathe to think what havoc he will cause as a sixth or seventh year. All you alright, Harry?" Minerva asked, turning to the hacking teenaged professor.
"Fine," Harry sputtered, "I'm fine. But I have too go do…I just have to go."
Harry quickly stood and exited the Great Hall leaving his half finished breakfast and two confused older women behind.
Harry decided to go to his classroom early so he could get some grading done before the first year Hufflepuffs and Ravenclaws came in for their lesson. He was about half way up the second floor staircase when he was flagged down by two of the aforementioned Hufflepuff girls.
"Professor Potter!" a little blonde girl called out.
Harry stopped and turned around greet the girls, "Good morning Clara, Jenny. What can I do for you?"
"We wanted to know if the rumors are true," the brunette asked.
Harry felt his stomach drop past his ankles. "What rumors, Jenny?"
"That you're expecting a little one," Clara added.
"Where did you hear that?" Harry asked, feeling his heart beat faster.
"Eustace told us this morning," Jenny replied.
"And what exactly did Eustace tell you?" he asked warily, not revealing anything.
"Eustace told us, that Maureen told him, that Paige and Adam went down to Hagrid's house last night and he let slip that you asked him if he could get you a baby hellhound for class next week," Clara explained.
Harry let out the breath he wasn't even aware he was holding. "Oh. Well yes, that was supposed to be a surprise. So I would appreciate it if you didn't spread that one around any more than it has already been spread."
"Of course, Professor Potter," both girls readily agreed.
"Alright, good. Now why don't you two go get some breakfast before I see you in class."
"Okay, see you in class, Professor!" they called as they skipped down the stairs.
Harry quickly made his way up the last few flights of stairs, carefully avoiding anyone he might have to have a conversation with. Once he reached the Defense classroom he grabbed a stack of fourth year essays to correct, but when an essay discussing the father of modern defensive magic made his mouth go dry, he put them aside.
Knowing there was no way he was going to able to keep his mind on the papers he should be grading, he buried his head in his arms on top of his desk. He closed his eyes and tried to clear his mind. It was kind of working until a hand landed on his shoulder.
"Hermione?!" Harry exclaimed as sat up and whipped his head around to see one of his oldest and dearest friends. "What are you doing here? How did you know I was here? Are you trying to give me a heart attack?"
"In the opposite order, not today, Ginny told me you would most likely be here and that's a longer story," Hermione answered with a smirk. "And it's nice to see you too."
Harry stood up so that he could give the brunette a hug. "I'm sorry, you just startled me. Of course it's nice to see you."
"Yes, you are a bit tightly wound right now," Hermione teased. "But considering the reason I'm here, I'm not really surprised. Ginny owled me last night, telling me of her suspicions. So I thought I would take the day off of work and come by today and offer my moral support as well as my potion making abilities since that particular potion requires a lot of attention throughout the day and I know you both have classes."
"You're amazing, Hermione," Harry said sincerely. "Thank you."
"It no problem Harry, I'm happy to do it," she reassured him. "I would have come down to the Great Hall this morning and seen you at breakfast, but Ginny was too busy hyperventilating before Herbology this morning to worry about eating. She seemed to think that everyone would know what was going on just by looking at her."
"I know how she feels," Harry murmured absently as he turned back towards the fireplace. "How is she holding up? I was worried when I didn't see her at breakfast."
"She's properly wigging out, but I think I calmed her down enough for her to make it through the day. Well, through her morning classes at least. I think it helped that I'm here to help with the potion. But that begs the question of how you are holding up?"
"Honestly, I don't know how I should be taking this. I mean this wasn't exactly part of the plan. Not that anything has turned out like I planned recently. If you had told me last year at this time that not only would I have defeated Voldemort, but gotten married to Ginny and then subsequently hid said marriage, and potentially be a father all before my nineteenth birthday, I would have sent you to St. Mungo's."
"Understandable," Hermione replied sympathetically.
"And it's not even that I don't want children, because I do. I just wasn't expecting it to happen so soon. I mean nothing about this is right. Ginny is still in school, which at this point is the least of our problems since no one besides you even knows that we're married."
"Well these things do tend to happen at the least opportune moments. But you'll get through it. You always do and you know that no matter what happens that Ron and I are here for you."
"Yeah, after you convince Ron not to murder me for eloping with his sister," Harry grumbled.
"You just leave him to me," Hermione replied, only half joking, making Harry smile in return. "But now I should go check on that potion and I think you have a band of first years arriving soon."
Harry glanced down at the watch Ginny had given him for their first Valentines Day together, only giving a cursory thought to the inscription Love Always that he knew was on the back of the face, as he realized that Hermione was right.
"I suppose the papers just aren't going to get graded today," Harry said looking at the pile of parchment with disdain. "But I really appreciate you coming out here today."
"It's really no problem," the brunette reassured him. "I'll see you after your classes."
Hermione spent the rest of the day in the Room of Requirement, tending to the potion and working on the reports she brought with her from her office. Harry and Ginny popped in several times throughout the day, but never at the same time. In fact, they hadn't seen each other all day. If you had asked either of them if they were avoiding the other they would have responded with an emphatic 'no', but subconsciously neither of them wanted to talk to each other about what was plaguing both of their thoughts. Instead they chose just to get updates of their spouse's thoughts and conditions through Hermione.
"Hey Hermione, is Harry here?" Ginny asked as she entered the Room of Requirement after finishing her nightly rounds.
"Hey Ginny, and no he's not, he actually just left about half an hour ago," Hermione replied, looking up from where she was stirring the cauldron. "He said he wanted to get some sleep before the potion was ready."
"Oh alright," Ginny said, crossing over to and sitting down on one of the oversized easy chairs. "Speaking of which, how is the potion coming?"
"Actually it's almost done," Hermione revealed. "If you want to stick around for another hour, you can take it tonight."
"What?! How did you manage that?" Ginny asked feeling anxious at the thought that it would be ready so much earlier than expected.
"Well there are certain tricks to speed up the brewing time of any potion if you know what you're doing," Hermione told her, switching into her lecture tone as she added one of the last ingredients. "It just makes it a little more delicate, which is why I've had to watch it so closely today."
"I'm surprised that Harry actually went to bed knowing it would be ready so soon," the redhead mused.
"Well actually he didn't," the older girl admitted. "I didn't tell him that it would be ready early. He was getting more progressively nervous throughout the day and that's with him thinking it would be ready in the morning. I was afraid he would have an aneurism if he knew it would be ready tonight."
Ginny chuckled lightly before turning more serious. "If Harry is having such a hard time with the idea of me being pregnant, how is he going to handle it if I actually am going to have a baby?"
"He'll handle it," Hermione said certainly, "and that's all that's really important. I think it's the uncertainty that really getting to him."
"I hope you're right."
"But regardless of what happens tonight, Harry is going to make an excellent father," Hermione mentioned with faux nonchalance.
"I know," Ginny said with a smile.
The girls continued to talk until the alarm that Hermione had set went off, signaling that the potion was ready.
"Okay, Ginny," Hermione said, ladling the potion into a glass. "This is it. Do you want to go wake up Harry so that he can be here when you get the result?"
"No, I just want to get this over with," Ginny replied, taking the glass from her best friend.
"Okay, if you're sure," Hermione said, handing over the glass. "Now just take the potion and after five minutes if you glow pink that means you're pregnant and if you glow blue that means you're not pregnant."
"I know how it works, Hermione," Ginny snapped.
"Alright, no need to be testy," Hermione replied.
"I'm sorry Hermione, I'm just a little anxious," she apologized, looking at the potion in her hand.
"I understand," the older girl dismissed. "Now are you going to take it?"
"Bottoms up," the red head joked, raising the potion in a mock toast before draining the glass. "Belch, that was unpleasant."
"I know," Hermione sympathized. "But now we wait."
"What do you mean you know?" Ginny asked with a raised brow.
"Well there was a point about half way through sixth year that I thought I might be pregnant," Hermione admitted while busying herself with cleaning up the potion supplies. "That's how I knew how to speed up the brewing time."
"Hermione!" Ginny exclaimed in shock.
"How positively scandalous that would have been! Sixteen year old Hermione Granger, Gryffindor Prefect, head of the class, pregnant by other Gryffindor prefect Ron Weasley," Ginny laughed.
"Actually it was after my birthday, so I was already seventeen. Which mean that I was the same age as you are now. And do I have to remind you that you are Head Girl so that would be even more scandalous than me being a Prefect," Hermione pointed out.
"Yes, but at least I'm in seventh year," Ginny replied. "Even if I am pregnant, the baby won't be born until after I graduate. If you had been pregnant the baby would have been born in the summer between sixth and seventh year. It would have been awfully hard to do your rounds as Head Girl with a baby on your hip. And, might I add, I'm married."
"Which no one knows but me, which is a scandal in and of itself," Hermione retorted. "But why are we even still discussing this. It was over two years ago, I wasn't pregnant and Ron and I learned a lesson and have been more careful since then. And besides you're glowing."
Ginny looked down at herself to find that she was indeed glowing.
"Congratulations, I guess…"
"I should go tell Harry…" Ginny said, still a bit shell shocked from the results.
"Good idea," Hermione agreed. "I doubt he's sleeping even if he doesn't expect the potion to be ready till morning."
Ginny gave the brunette a hug and quick kiss on the cheek. "Thanks so much for helping me out with this. I don't know what I would do without you."
"Don't worry about it," Hermione replied, hugging the younger girl back. "Now go tell your husband the news. I'm going to go home and get some sleep."
"Are you sure you don't want to stay here tonight so you don't have to walk all the way to Hogsmeade by yourself so you can Apparate home?" Ginny asked. "I was going to stay in Harry's room so you are welcome to my room."
"No, that's alright," Hermione refused politely. "Thanks for the offer, but I have to go to work in a few hours, and the walk doesn't bother me."
"Alright then, I guess I'll see you when I come home for Easter holiday."
"See you then," Hermione said giving the red head one last squeeze. "Bye Ginny."
And with a final wave, Ginny slipped out of the Room of Requirement and made her way to the professors' quarters, doing her best not to be caught.
Harry was sleeping fitfully when he was awoken by a familiar head resting itself on his shoulder and an arm draped across his chest.
"What are you doing in here?" he asked softly as he pulled her in closer to him.
"I have to tell you something and I didn't want to wait until the morning," she explained.
"Well," she said as she traced patterns on his bare chest with her fingertips, "Hermione finished the potion early so it was ready and I just took it..."
"And..." he prompted, tensing slightly despite his attempt not to.
"And… I'm not pregnant," she announced with a smile. "It was a false alarm."
"But what about…" he asked, confused, "I thought that you were…"
"Well that can happen sometimes, you know from stress and stuff," she explained.
"But what about you being sick?"
"I suppose I came by that cold honestly."
"Oh, okay… well this is great news, love," Harry told her earnestly.
"Yeah, now we can wait and have kids once we're ready for them in a couple years," Ginny replied. "I don't know how we would have done it now."
"Absolutely, it couldn't have happened at a worse time," Harry agreed. "We'll have our children when we're ready to be parents."
Ginny snuggled up to Harry, who responded by holding her tighter. They laid there together in silence for such a long time that Harry was sure that Ginny had fallen asleep, so he was surprised when she spoke again.
"Harry?" her voice whispered.
"Yes, my love?" he replied.
"Is it terrible that I'm a bit disappointed?" she asked.
"No," he told her sincerely, "because I am too."
A/N So there we have it...Ginny isn't pregnant...to be perfectly honest, I was never going to make her pregnant or even have the scare, but so many of you assumed that she was when I really just had her being stressed, sick and over worked., that I couldn't let this opportunity go...but you guys got an extra chapter out of it so I'm sure you're not complaining...sooo, let me know what you all think!
Also a few announcements I have a myspace group for my stories if you are interested in joining to which the link is also on my homepage also one last thing, I'm illustrating my other fic Life Happens...so check those out as well...again my homepage has the link...lol...one last thing...I've been doing a few oneshots lately so go check those out as well!