Ginny Weasley sat upright in her bed, staring at the
opposite wall. Hermione was sleeping peacefully in the
bed next to her, and Fleur was (despite much protest)
sleeping on the fold out bed beneath Hermione's.
Apparently, Mrs. Weasley figured Hermione had been through enough this week, and deserved a little rest.
Ginny figured if she was a really good person, she'd give Fleur her bed. But she wasn't feeling particularly giving, despite her mum's improving opinion of Bill's fiance.
Yet, even with her bed, she couldn't sleep. This entire year seemed so surreal that she couldn't process it all. Dumbledore dead. Snape completely and unquestionably a bad guy. I mean, sure, she'd never liked him...but damn. That was quite a blow. And Harry actually her boyfriend. Well, sort of. His lame break-up attempt was more like hitting the pause button, not the stop.
Ginny refused to dwell on this anymore than she already had. She hadn't eaten much at dinner, so she figured she'd go comfort eat. Because THAT was so healthy. And it would definitely help her fit into the too-small bridesmaid dress Fleur had gotten her for tomorrow's ceremony. Bugger it. She was starving.
She got up, sinking her feet into slippers and padding into the hallway. The Burrow was packed to its considerable brim, since no one really fancied staying alone after everything, and the Burrow was so well protected.
It seemed as if the entire Order had made the Burrow
unofficial headquarters until after Bill and Fleur's
imminent wedding, when they all had to return to work,
whatever that might entail.
She walked down the hallway, hearing the peaceful
sounds of sleep from behind the doors as she walked.
It seemed unreal that everyone could still sleep so untroubled after everything.
And now Harry was leaving. Just when they'd finally
figured things out. She felt a small ache in her
stomach, remembering how he'd looked at the funeral.
His green eyes had been so full of...hurt. Pain. Grief beyond what anyone three times his age should ever have to deal with. She hated it.
Ginny sighed. All she could hope was to be some kind of escape for him. He'd always have someone else to save, something else to finish. The curse of loving a hero, I guess, she thought with a sad smile.
She was about to turn the corner into the kitchen when she heard two hushed voices, quiet but angry.
Curious, she stopped.
"So, what? You're just leaving again?"
Ginny recognized that voice, although she had never heard it so strained by emotion. It was Tonks.
"You make it sound like I want to go." A male voice responded.
Professor Lupin, Ginny realized.
Ooh, this was interesting. She was more than a little surprised when they'd been outed as couple in the hospital wing. She couldn't imagine that she had met two people more different in her entire life.
She peered around the corner, and saw them standing in the main living room. Tonks had her back to Ginny, her bright pink hair practically crackling with rage.
Ginny could see Lupin's face, but they were pretty deep in conversation. They obviously hadn't noticed her. She quietly kept watching, her curiosity superceding their right to private conversation.
"How am I supposed to know how you feel about anything? One minute, you're right there with me-"
"Things were different then!" Lupin said, rubbing a hand wearily over his eyes.
"How were they different?" She said, her voice rising in volume.
"Unless you want the entire Order involved in this conversation, keep your voice down." He put his hand on his arm.
"Don't tell me what to do. I'm not a child." Tonks said, shaking his hand away furiously.
"Then stop acting like one." He retorted.
Ginny could practically imagine the look on Tonks's face-- it was the same one she'd make if someone said that to her.
"Oh, yeah. Right. I'm the immature one. You're the one who shuts out the entire world!" She whispered through gritted teeth.
"You don't know me. You don't know my life. You have no idea what I've been through.How much I've lost." He said, still speaking in a dangerously soft whisper.
"Then tell me! Damn it, Remus, just trust me! Let me in!" She said, stepping closer to him.
"I did let you in. And then I remembered that everytime I do that with someone, I lose them. My whole life has been losing people."
She took his hand.
"You're not losing me." She said quietly.
"You don't know that." He turned, smiling sadly.
"I do know that if you spend your whole life avoiding relationships because you're scared of losing them...then you're not living at all."
"Got it all figured out, do you?" He sat down on the couch.
"No. Of course not. Who the hell does? But I do know that I want to figure it out with you. That's why you're so frustrating, Remus- I don't even know how you feel about anything anymore. If you even care."
There was a long silence. Ginny squirmed slightly from her vantage point.
Finally, Lupin spoke, his voice still soft.
"Of course I care."
"Don't. Don't say that if you don't...if you're just trying to..." Tonks said, her voice breaking slightly.
Ginny blinked. Tonks getting emotional was still a strange thing to witness.
Lupin got to his feet, crossing to her and kissing her. It was a long enough kiss that Ginny started to feel very awkward just standing there like some crazy voyeur. She didn't know teachers ever kissed anyone like THAT. When the kiss ended some time later, they just looked at each other in silence for a long moment.
"Okay, you can't just win every argument like that"
Tonks said somewhat breathlessly.
He looked at her, a very serious expression on his face.
"I told you I loved you, and I meant it. Nothing's changed." He finally said.
"Then why are you leaving?" She said.
Ginny could now see them in profile, and noticed Tonks was on the verge of tears.
"Because I don't have a choice."
"There's always a choice! You don't have to go back!"
"I'm the only person who can do this job! That was
decided for me a long time ago, and I've accepted it.
Dumbledore asked me to do it...and I can't just give up because we lost him. You think I could live with myself if I didn't do everything I could? If something ever happened to you...or anyone else while I was wasting time staying safe...I could never look at myself in the mirror. You understand that. You're fighting too. And I hate worrying about you everyday.
But that's just who we are, and we've known that from the beginning."
Tonks impatiently wiped a tear off her cheek. There was another long silence.
"You're right, as always. S-Sorry for getting like this."
"You don't have to apologize." He affectionately tucked a strand of bright pink hair behind one ear.
She smiled, leaning her cheek against his hand.
"Leave it to me to waste the time we get together crying like soppy Muggle soap star." She laughed.
"Your hair...it's back to normal. Or your brand of normal."
"You like my hair. Don't deny it." She grinned.
"Never said anything about not liking it."
"Besides, you never hear me complaining about the whole Tweedy Librarian thing you've got going on." She laughed slightly.
"Worked on you, didn't it?" He smiled back.
"Helpless against your charms, I'm afraid."
He kissed her forehead, pulling her against him. She laid her head on his shoulder, her arms around him tightly.
"I love you so much." Tonks whispered.
Ginny smiled slightly. Awww.
Then they were kissing again, and Ginny figured it was
about time she stopped her little Rear Window act.
Now, it would just be certifiably weird if she stayed.
Feeling strangely heartened that her love life was certainly not the only one affected by recent events,
she walked back to her bedroom.
Crawling under the sheets, she realized she was still hungry. She rolled over to her side, giggling slightly. Of course the room of personal confessions had to be en route to the kitchen. Love could be so very incovenient, it seemed.
For a moment, Tonks and Remus completely forgot that they were in the Weasley's living room. But as this particular moment grew more heated, and Tonks nearly stumbled over the rather tatty couch, it all came back.
"Remus..." She broke away from him, laughing.
"I know. We can't do this here."
"Yeah. Might give the kiddies a whole different kind of lesson." She said, unable to stop laughing.
"You think you're so hilarious."
They both caught their breath for a moment.
"It really is cruel to do this to someone." He sighed,
running a hand through his slightly messy hair.
"Hey, you started it." She pointed out.
They stepped away from each other, composing themselves.
"So...we're all right then?" He looked at her.
"Just as long as you promise to never bring up that whole "werewolves can't get married" crap again."
"What I meant was-"
She put a finger to his lips.
"I know what you meant. And it's bloody ridiculous."
"So's your hair." Remus raised an eyebrow.
"Ouch. I'm guessing a "so's-your-face" retort wouldn't help much in your opinion of my maturity." Tonks grinned, crossing her arms.
"You'd be correct in that assumption."
He sighed, looking at her contemplatively.
"It's just...I never even thought I'd have friends after I got bitten...much less anything resembling a real relationship. I've just a lot of issues I have to work out."
"Well, work them out then. I'll be here."
"I know you will be." He smiled at her, feeling such a strong, sudden surge of affection that it sent a pleasant shiver through his nerves.
Tonks smiled back, knowing that in all the nights to come that she'd lie awake missing him, she'd remember what he looked like right now, in this moment.
"I'll see you tomorrow." She said quietly, squeezing his hand and turning to go.
"What are you wearing for the wedding?" He asked her curiously.
"Tweed. Head-to-toe. We'll be one of those horrid couples who match." She winked.
"Can't wait to see that," He said, rolling his eyes,
A/N- If ya want more, leave me a nice review and a shiny apple. And I'll see what I can do. Thanks for reading!