Prologue: The Gift
First Day of School—6th year
Something horrible is going to happen this year. I can feel it . . . and I know it's going to happen to me. You see, I'm a Seer. Of course you know that, whom else could I really tell but you. Most people would think being a Seer would be an advantage and most people would be wrong. It's like having telepathy and being unable to control the powers. It's tasting, feeling, seeing misery around the world every day. It's painful, lonely, and cold inside my head every hour of every day because I have to deal other peoples pain, because I have to see it, feel it, taste it. This is not gift, it's a curse—one unknown to my family. I don't even want to begin to think how my family would react to what I am.
Though I don't usually talk this freely, even to you my dear diary, have simply stated 'I'm a Seer' and dropped it. Something has worried me deeply. For the most part, until recently, I haven't been able to see my own future, nor the future of anyone that's close to me. Lately, though, I've been getting glimpses of the immediate future, and on a Wednesday during the summer, I slipped up. This troubles me, because, until recently, I was able to contain my emotions, I was pretty much emotionless—my visions never involved my family, so it was much work anyhow.
We had woken up early to go get some school supplies--our letters had come the previous day. We did what we did every year. While I was on my way to the restroom to brush my teeth, I bumped into Hermione. I don't like touching people I don't care about. You see, it's the contact that sometimes initiates the vision, but I didn't think anything of it, because Hermione was a person I cared about, and as I said previously if I'm close to a person or love them, it's like there's this brick wall with a mountain full of raging ocean water. When I touched her, I flinched; I had never gotten images of her before so I wasn't ready for flashes behind my eyelids. Hermione clutched onto me, staring at me as if, any minute, she was going to scream for help. I told her very quietly that I was fine. What I'd seen had scared me, not because it was god-awful, but because it wasn't very important. I had seen two things—Hermione kissing Harry and almost getting caught by Ron, who insisted his feelings had vanished for her, and Draco Malfoy throwing red paint on Hermione's beautiful knitted black cardigan that was tied around her waist. She loved that cardigan, hell, I loved that cardigan. It was something that I was secretly hoping she would give to me. No luck yet.
The first store we were going to go to was Flourish & Blotts. I saw Draco and Lucius Malfoy, along with a few of Draco's friends, instantly. And I knew in that moment of recognition that this is where the incident would happen. Lucius Malfoy, smirking down at his son, turned halfway around, pretending not to notice the pail in Draco's hands. The pail was full of paint of a very ugly, reddish shade. I had known, but I should have known better to just let it happen. Slow motion is a very strange thing--I saw Malfoy raise it and I hollered, quickly pushed Hermione out of the way, and oh what a mistake I made. Hermione was thankful, Harry and Ron were upset, the Malfoys were in shock . . . and me? Well, I was just covered in red paint.
It seems that no one else could see the can of paint as in literally. An invisibility spell had been placed on it…there's a shocker! I came to the conclusion that courtesy of the premonition, my vision was able to bypass the spell. The only thing that I could think about after I found this out was that the Malfoy men, no matter how much I hated them, were not stupid, and would soon put two and two together.
If anyone found out about me, I would have to leave Hogwarts and go to a professional Seer school where I'd be pumped and probed with information from the years that I've missed. And the questions, oh the questions, most of which would make my family irate, especially the fact that I've hidden my little secret for nearly four-and-a-half years. What scares me the most is that I can feel my power becoming stronger, so strong that I'm afraid of myself--of what I see, of the people I see doing those things. This world has a mask and everyone of us hide behind it, hide what we really are, what we're capable of. I have come to the conclusion that I wasn't made to see all of these painful things in the world, no one person could handle nor should that one person have to deal with it. I've wanted my family to shelter me from the pain for a long time, but I'm in the position of sheltering them, and it's a burden--one, I feel, that is taking its toll. It's building up to this year, I know it, I can feel it in my bones. I have a feeling that my little secret won't be mine for much longer.
I don't know if it's going to be good or bad, but I'll just assume it's going to be bad just because it usually is. You see, I don't have the greatest luck, well obviously. I know gossip spreads quickly, especially bad, true gossip. Of course everyone knows about the Chamber, about what I did, and it's blatantly obvious that I'm not the most graceful swan. I don't even think I can be classified as a swan. Perhaps a pigeon . . .
I'm scared. Well, I'm always scared, but now it's gone past the immobilizing fear. I know, what could be worse than that? I'd thought the same thing, there's a lot that's worse. When I get bad feelings, the outcome is always horrible, but this one was worse somehow. I don't even think I can explain it. So I'm preparing myself for the worst, for my death. I don't want to die, it would be too easy, though I hate being a Seer, and I've seen more than I care to, there's still that spark of good that keeps me going. My death frightens me, but it's an option, one that would make the most difference in everything. I don't know what will happen, but I'll make it my year's goal to find out why I'm suddenly seeing my family and friends' future when I never could before. Is that I'm getting stronger? Or coming to an end? My eyes show something though…You know what they say about endings right?
She had had two glimpses when she had hugged Fred and George, which was when she really figured out what was happening to her. She was seeing the futures of her family with almost every touch. Thankfully, both twins had come to the conclusion that she would miss them when she had nearly cut off their air supply, but in reality she was in another world of flashes and images inside of her mind, clutching at the closest thing near her to keep her balance. She usually always fell during a vision; it's why a lot people thought she was clumsy by nature. It's the flashes of images, a bit like a strobe light, but instead of light she saw people and blood, lots of blood. So here she was, on the train, clutching her notebook to her chest, desperately trying to avoid skin-to-skin contact as she wound her way down the narrow aisle. She didn't want to take a chance; she didn't want to trigger anything.
The conceited gits!
She loved the twins, but they were incredibly stuck on themselves. What she'd seen had been good news, however, and like a good sister, she had consoled them, saying that they'd have a great year and that things had to look up. She quoted something she'd heard Hermione say to Harry, "What goes down must come up." Ginny still didn't understand the strained look on Hermione's face when she told Fred and George not to remember that saying. It was then that she walked towards the train, leaving Harry, Hermione, and Ron to say their goodbyes by themselves.
Hmm, I wonder if I got it wrong? Ginny thought. It was a Muggle saying, right? It's possible. If I think about it, it doesn't really make sense. Muggles are very strange creatures.
Ginny turned the corner, still in thought, and grunted in a very unladylike manner as she crashed into a solid body. Arms reached to catch her, but with her arms clutching her notebook, the pale, yet soft looking skin of the hands that reached for her only managed to grab old, worn robes. She gasped as she heard her favourite of the two robes she owned rip. She fell ungracefully to the floor with a gasped 'oof'.
The force of her bum hitting the floor had caused a jolt of pain to shoot through her body, making her arms go limp and causing her to drop her notebook. It landed next to a pair of very pricey name brand shoes--a brand, Ginny recognized, that only a few people had access to. These shoes had not been introduced to the general public yet and she knew it could have been only one person who'd actually wear top quality to school. It was the one person who didn't care if his shoes got scuffed or if his robes got torn, because he was rich. Draco Malfoy.
She watched in horror as the legs in the pressed black slacks bent and their owner reached to pick up the book. "No!" Ginny cried, throwing her hand out and tightly gripping the smooth wrist.
"Excuse me," the sharp, aristocratic voice snapped. "Unhand me, Weasley."
"Y-you know me?" Ginny asked, somewhat surprised.
She knew it wasn't considered proper manners to be talking to someone and not making eye contact, but he held something that was too important to get distracted from. She didn't tear her eyes away from his fingertips, which were touching her notebook, the book that held her deep, deep and very dark secrets.
If this got into the wrong hands, she thought to herself, holding in a scared shiver, but it wouldn't get into the wrong hands. Her vision a year ago had made it known that that wouldn't be the way people found out about her--and they would find out about her. She just didn't know when or how.
"Well, yes," Draco Malfoy said, his voice highly irritated. "You and your family are impossible to miss. For some it's your garish red hair and spotty nose, but for me it's the stench of poverty. Now, remove your hand."
"You first," Ginny spoke softly, still not making eye contact and slightly surprised that she'd been able to keep the tremor out of her voice.
"You're touching my notebook."
She almost snorted at that. The last notebook she'd had wouldn't have held such importance, but of course she would have ripped that thing to pieces if she could. A lot of people had been surprised that she'd gotten another one almost within a year of what she'd been through. It had taken time; even after she purchased it she would stare at the black cover with gold engravings on it, thinking 'what if'. She knew she couldn't go through that again, but she couldn't bare the burden of what she had to everyday without telling someone, or rather something. Her family wouldn't understand, Hermione would most likely want to do experiments, Dumbledore would want to her to go to a school for proper training, and Harry…well she wasn't really sure what he would do. So she took the chance.
She was hesitant to look up, and it wasn't just because his fingers were on the black cover of her diary. Ginny knew that there had, just recently, been something wrong with her eyes; they didn't look normal, almost as if she were constantly in a daydream, and in that dream, a blue light bounced off her irises, giving them a silvery bluish tint. That type of colour over brown eyes, well she definitely understood the eeriness that snared people's attention. She had looked in the mirror for hours every day, wondering why people would frown at her or give her strange looks, because it couldn't be what she saw, which was a nose that was too round with too many freckles, bow shaped lips, and brown silvery blue eyes, almost almond-shaped eyes with a slight defect. It was obvious what drew the attention.
She hadn't seen anything different on any of the days leading up to the beginning of term. Hermione had told her, on the way to platform nine and three quarters, that her eyes had changed even more, that the silver and blue had become more noticeable somehow. Ginny hadn't known what to say. She knew that there'd been something slightly wrong with her eyes for the past two years, but as of late she'd been seeing a lot more people noticing it more often. Once, when she'd been looking for more signs of change in her eyes, she could have sworn she'd looked in the mirror and saw black hair, golden skin, and warrior colours of black, gold, and indigo painting her face. The colours, she knew, were for loyalty, strength, and cunningness, which was why it seemed a little odd that she would see those colours. A fire-like design was visible at the corner of her right eye. Ginny had blinked and the image had disappeared. She had never seen it again.
She glanced up, silently cursing herself as Draco Malfoy's eyes widened with shock, his lower jaw dropped a fraction of an inch, and his eyebrows crinkled. "Weasley, if you aren't careful someone just might—"
Ginny averted her eyes, and slowly, with her notebook in her hand, stood up and shook her head. "No, they won't."
He frowned. She could feel him staring at the crown of her head; she could feel his confusion, his interest.
What the hell is happening to me?
Her breathing was becoming shallow and she soon found herself panting for breath. "I'm sorry," she whispered and quickly pushed past him.
To Be Continued…