Love, it seemed such a simple word, but so much was tied to it, so much was at stake. If everything didn't go as planned, there was so much to lose as well…
It had been five years since the funeral, five years since he broke her heart. I had also been five years since the Dark Lord attacked—anyone. Once the Dark Lord realized he was down two horcruxes, he went into hiding. Many suspected he was gathering more forces. Harry, though, was sure it was to secure the remaining horcruxes.
Harry turned his thoughts back to Ginny. In the five years since he broke her heart, he had tried to rectify his mistake. In time she began to let him back into her heart. It was painful though, for both of them. Harry had a lot to make up for, and Ginny had to learn to trust again.
Less than six months ago, Ginny finally accepted everything. She finally realized that Harry was never going to hurt her again. Now the time was right for Harry to do the one thing he had wanted to since he first realized how much he loved Ginny.
Ginny and Hermione sat at the table in alternating silence. Ginny sipped her tea, while Hermione was reading—yet again—trying to find the missing piece to the puzzle.
"Oh, oh. Ginny, I think I've found something," the smile on her face looked like it was going to split her face in two.
"Really? What is it?"
"Well, you—wait a sec," her face darkened as she became totally depressed. "Never mind, it says the same thing as every other book I've read this week." Hermione slammed the book and shoved it into her bag.
Ginny suppressed a giggle, even though the smile on her face was harder to mask; for Hermione had been doing this all evening. Every book seemed to say the same thing, "There is no known way to destroy a horcrux."
"Well, look on the bright side."
"What bright side?" Hermione replied, the contempt on her face obvious.
Ginny's expression sobered. She looked at her tea and frowned. "At least you found a way to pass the time."
Hermione gave her a soft smile. "They'll be here. Don't worry."
Ginny looked up at Hermione, her face splitting into a wide grin.
Hermione smiled, "See, I told you it wasn't that bad."
Ginny shook her head and giggled, "No, silly." She pointed at the door behind Hermione, "They're here!"
Hermione turned around and saw Harry and Ron walking toward them. When they reached the table, Ron wrapped his arm around Hermione and placed a kiss on her cheek. "Good evening Love."
Hermione kissed Ron on the cheek and returned his greeting.
Harry, on the other hand, picked Ginny up out of her chair and kissed her hard on the lips. Ginny almost melted there in his arms. "Hi, Gin."
"Hi, Harry. I missed you."
Harry pushed the hair out of Ginny's face, "I missed you too."
Ron rolled his eyes and faked a gag. "It's only been a day you two. You act like you've been apart for like a fortnight or something."
"Yeah," Hermione added, "it's not like you didn't know where they were either. You even had a chance to go with them, but you turned them down."
Ginny blushed, as she sat back down, "I know, but I still missed him."
Harry took the seat beside her and Ron took the seat by Hermione. The waiter brought tea for Ron and Harry. They sat there for an hour or so alternating between eating and talking about the nothing they've found in Hermione's books, and what Harry and Ron found on their journey the past day.
When they had finished their dinner, Harry got up and leaned toward Ginny and whispered into her ear, "Hey, Gin, can I ask you something real quick?"
Ron and Hermione looked at Harry knowingly; Harry shrugged wondering what they were thinking.
Ginny looked at him with a quizzical expression on her face, "Okay."
They walked outside to a bench in front of the restaurant. Harry allowed Ginny to take a seat and then sat next to her. He took Ginny's hand in his and looked into her eyes. How he loved looking into those eyes, he could get lost for days in them. He brushed a lock of hair from her face before running his hand through his own mop of hair. "Ginny, I…Well, you know that…I mean…what I'm trying to say is…"
Ginny smiled, and then pressed her lips against his. "Does that make it easier for you to say what you want to?
Harry smiled and looked down, he then sighed and looked back ather, the smile gone, "Not really." He forced a smile, it looked more like a painful grimace than a smile. "Ginny, I—"
"Ginny, Ginny, Ginny!" Harry and Ginny turned to see Hermione sprinting toward them, a huge grin on her face. When she reached them, Harry and Ginny could see tear streaks on her face. "Ginny, Harry, I've got the best news."
Ginny cocked her head looking at her friend trying to read into her happiness. "You found out how to destroy a horcrux?"
"No, silly," she replied, shaking her head. "Ron just proposed to me!"
Ginny jumped up and wrapped her arms around her friend, "Oh, Hermione, that's wonderful!"
Harry stood up, a little dumbstruck, "That's wonderful Hermione." At that moment Harry noticed Ron standing behind Hermione, his head down. "Cheers, Ron!"
Ron looked up, he looked more confused than happy. Harry walked over to him and grabbed his arm, leading him away from the giggling, gossiping, girls. When they were out of earshot of the two Harry turned Ron around to face him. "What's wrong, mate? You should be just as exstatic as Hermione."
"Well," Ron began, "I thought I would be, except I don't know what came over me. I didn't even mean to ask her tonight, I mean with what you wanted to talk to Ginny about, I figured it wouldn't be a good day to, you know, ask her, but I did."
"What happened that made you lose your mind and pop the question to her tonight?"
"Well, after you two went outside, Hermione looked at me, her eyes just so beautiful, I mean—Wow!"
Harry rolled his eyes, "Get on with it Ron!"
"Oh, okay. Well anyway, she looked at me and said, 'Ronald, I love you.'"
"You two say that all the time, what would make today different?"
"I'm not sure, but she said that, then I said, 'I love you too, Hermione.' Then that's when I lost it. I said that I loved her so much that—"
"Wait a sec, you want the story, then shut up and listen. Well, I said I wanted to never leave her again. Then she was like, 'Oh, Ronald, does this mean what I think it means?' Then I asked her what she thought it meant. Then she said, 'Does this mean you're asking me to marry you?'"
"Don't tell me anymore."
"Well, she looked so happy and so excited, that I couldn't let her down. You know I've been carrying around the engagement ring I bought her for about four months now. Anyway, I pulled it out of my cloak, and said, 'Yes, love. Hermione, will you marry me?' I mean, I'm surprised you didn't hear her scream. The whole restaurant was looking at us."
Harry groaned and slumped against the wall. "This makes things difficult."
"I know, mate. I mean…like I said, I wasn't planning on it. With you telling Ginny and all that—"
"I didn't tell her."
Ron's mouth dropped, "Why not?"
Harry looked at Ron in disbelief. "Because right when I was about to tell her, your fiancé came running out like a madman."
Ron, groaned. "I'm so sorry, this is all my fault, I mean this was suppose to be your day."
"It's alright, Ron. It isn't your fault. I've just got to tell her, but not today. Now, today is your day. Congratulations, mate." Harry put his arm around Ron.
For the first time Ron smiled, "Thanks, Harry."
At that point the girl's joined them. Ginny put her hand in Harry's. "Didn't you want to talk to me?"
Harry, looked at Ginny and smiled. "It can wait. We've got some celebrating to do."