By Duck Goddess
A/N: None of the characters mentioned here are mine.
This one-shot takes place after Dumbledore's funeral. To Bitter Memories readers, it's a sort of sequel again in Ginny's POV.
"The funeral is over," said the small man in the black suit. "Please return to the castle." I walked back with Neville and Luna and saw in the distance, Ron and Hermione in deep conversation with him. I looked away, thinking of what he said. "How do you think I would feel if this was your funeral?" His words haunted me.
I returned to my dormitory and grabbed my trunk. The other girls were sobbing and hugging each other. One of them, Leah Campbell, came up to me and put a hand on my arm.
"I know what happened," she said sadly. Seeing the shock on my face, she added, "I saw you two." I couldn't think of anything to say so I just nodded and made my way down the stairs. I saw the Golden Trio, looking grave and sitting in the armchairs for what seemed like the last time. I sighed and walked past them. I wasn't sure if they noticed me.
I sat in a compartment on the Hogwarts Express with Ron, Hermione, Neville, Luna and him. Everyone was silent, Dumbledore's funeral still fresh on their minds. I could feel his eyes on me, as if trying to see what I was thinking. I refused to look at him because I knew I would probably burst into tears if I did. At least I didn't cry in front of him when we broke up.
I looked at my brother and Hermione. She was still leaning on him, quietly sobbing as he stroked her hair. I inwardly smiled but then remembered the cause. I looked beside me at Neville and Luna. They were both lost in their own thoughts. Unfortunately, I was sitting across him but he was looking out the window now.
Dumbledore. Dead. What were we going to do? The Order had lost its founder, Hogwarts had lost its Headmaster, and the wizarding world had lost its…leader. And he was Secret Keeper for the Order…would the Death Eaters be able to penetrate Grimmauld Place? I could see his body, lying at the base of the Astronomy Tower; his white, marble tomb by the lake.
Bill. Mutilated; scarred forever. And Phle – Fleur's outburst in the Hospital Wing probably changed Mum forever. She'd be talking about it to grandchildren; if she'd have any that is. I knew that a big family like ours wouldn't make it through the war unscathed. My eyes began to blur and I instantly rubbed them.
"Are you okay?" he asked, looking at me again with concerned eyes. For the first time in days, I met his eyes. There was a fierce, determined gleam in them and I knew what he was going to do. He would be the one to destroy Voldemort.
"Yeah," I replied, smiling weakly. "Just tired." He frowned but glanced out the window again.
Hermione was looking at me now, as if she was afraid that I would have a breakdown. I smiled at her but to me, it felt more like a grimace. If this war continued, I might not be able to see her again. Voldemort hunted down muggleborns and what if, this time, Hermione would not survive? I'd be overwhelmed with sadness but the effect would be worse on Ron. I knew he would want to take his own life to join her.
Ron. He was the rash, impetuous one who never for a second thought about the consequences. I remembered as a child that I was the closest to Ron because we were the youngest ones and we only had each other. As I grew up, we grew apart and I regretted it after I saw how he hung out with his friends and I hung out with mine. There were so many things to say to him but I just didn't know what.
Neville and Luna – my newfound friends and the most loyal to the DA. After I got to know Luna, I immediately felt sorry that I had called her 'Loony' with my friends. And Neville, clumsy, shy, Neville, one of the most supportive people I have ever met.
And then I looked at Harry. I gazed at his messy black hair that stuck up naturally, his black-rimmed round glasses and the intense green eyes behind them that were following the countryside outside the window. Then, he tore his eyes from the window and stared back at me. I felt as if I was in the Common Room again after the Quidditch match. I felt remorse and sorrow in his eyes and I knew he was scrutinizing me, too. I took a deep breath and stood up. Harry's eyes followed me and everyone fixed their wide eyes on me.
"I have to go to the loo," I lied and rushed out of the compartment.
I passed the compartments and analysed each one. Everyone was quiet and most were either crying or meditating. I walked into the toilet and locked the door. Suddenly, I collapsed onto the floor, the emotions pouring out of me as hot, salty tears. I wept for what seemed like hours when I finally stopped. Be strong, Ginny, be strong…I kept thinking that so many times over the past few days that these words seemed to hold no meaning anymore. Strength didn't seem to run in me anymore.
I stood up and looked in the mirror. My trademark Weasley red hair was all over the place and in tangles. My eyes were red-rimmed and there were hollows under my eyes. The tears I had just cried had left stains on my pale cheeks. Overall, I looked a fright. Oh well. It's not as if it matters now.
I was still looking in the mirror when the door sprang open with a bang. I shrieked, thinking there was an attack when I saw that standing in the doorway was Harry.
"What the hell were you thinking?" I asked breathlessly, trying to calm my heart.
He was looking at me the same way he did in the Common Room; as if he just realised that I was there. I felt strangely shy and ducked my head. Then, realising that I had asked him a question, he shook his head.
"I was worried about you," he answered earnestly. "You took ages in there."
"Well, thank you for your concern," I replied, not able to think of anything else to say. "But I'm fine."
"Look, Ginny, I –"
"I'm fine, Harry!" I snapped. He looked shocked for a moment before that feeling was replaced by hurt. I instantly softened.
"I'm sorry. I didn't mean to shout at you like that," I said gently, looking at my feet.
"It's alright," he said, as he too, looked away. "It's my fault that you're upset. If I hadn't kissed you –"
"You think I'm upset because we broke up?" I interrupted angrily, shielding my thoughts. "I'm upset because of this bloody war that isn't your fault! It's Voldemort's!"
"I know," he said simply as my jaw dropped. Was this Harry Potter I was talking to? "But if I hadn't kissed you in the Common Room, then I wouldn't have had to break up with you!"
"If you hadn't kissed me," I said hotly, "Then we wouldn't have gone out at all!"
After my comment, we both stayed silent for a while, just glaring at each other. Finally, he sighed. "Why are we arguing about this?" he asked softly.
"I don't know. You started it."
"I did," said Harry, smiling. I smiled back and I noticed the look on his face again. He stepped forward and I subconsciously moved towards him. He leaned towards me and I closed my eyes, waiting for the kiss. His lips met mine and I instinctively wrapped my arms around his neck as Harry wrapped his arms around my waist. This seemed so familiar, so right – it was like we were back at Hogwarts again, spending time by the lake with no danger, no war…
No! I yelled in my mind as I pushed Harry away. I stared at him, wide-eyed and he seemed to understand.
"I'm sorry," he said quickly. "We shouldn't have done that."
"Yes, we shouldn't have," I replied regretfully. "It was wrong. We agreed to break up because of Voldemort, right? We can't do this."
For a moment, I hoped that Harry would contradict himself and say, "No, I want to be with you" and kiss me passionately but that didn't happen. Being the honourable person that he was, he nodded. We both turned and walked back to our compartment, avoiding each other's eyes. We strode into the compartment and Ron looked like he was going to say something but decided better after a warning look from Hermione. We continued sitting in silence until the train arrived at King's Cross.
We each grabbed our trunks and as Harry passed mine to me, our hands accidentally brushed. I instantly blushed and took it without a word. I saw Ron and Hermione exchange questioning looks as I ignored them. We got off the train and I looked at it sadly, knowing that I might not be going back to Hogwarts for at least another year.
I saw a red-headed clan and happiness sprung up inside me like flowers blooming in wild fields. I ran to my mother and hugged her tightly, then my father and the rest of my siblings.
"I'm so glad you're home," said Mum, smiling as I hugged her again. I could feel eyes on me again and I sought out for his eyes in the busy train station. Harry looked at me with his bright green eyes for a moment before his eyes travelled beside me to Ron, Hermione, Neville, Luna and the rest of my family. He smiled softly before leaving towards the Muggle world with his aunt and uncle without a word. Goodbye, Harry, I thought before I left with my family.
A/N: Well, this should probably be my last fic! Please review, I would really appreciate it!