Disclaimer: Move to Michigan. It snows in April. I do not own Harry Potter...
A/N: Woo! An actual slightly okay update time! Yess!
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HAPPY EASTER!!! (is eating chocolate while typing, for real)
Start the countdown! Only about 3 chapters to go!
Chapter 15- Welcome to my Life
"I really think he should be here a few more days!" Madam Pomfrey was saying to Mrs. Weasley.
"I'm sorry, Poppy, but he should be getting home now," Professor McGonagall said sternly, hands on her hips. Harry was already out of bed, silently packing his things slowly. He knew the reporters would be flooding outside the castle and he would rather face them later than sooner, but later wouldn't come.
"Fine, fine!" cried Madame Pomfrey, obviously flustered. Harry felt a hand on his shoulder and turned to see Ron grinning at him.
"Ready to get out of here?" He asked. Harry nodded furiously.
"We tried to get the reporters to back off, but they say the Ministry gave them permission to be here. Bunch of…" Ron went on to call the reporters and the Ministry some foul names. Harry felt like laughing, but it never reached the surface. Ron seemed to notice and he said,
"You okay, mate?" Harry nodded, throwing his bag over his shoulder.
"Where's Hermione?" Harry asked, looking around. Ron's expression clouded and he looked away.
"At the Burrow," he said vaguely. Harry remained silent. Hermione was a wreck even at the battle. Harry could hardly imagine what she was feeling, now that she had had time to be alone with her thoughts… It must be something similar to drowning. Harry knew the feeling, like you couldn't escape from your misery, guilt dragging you down at the same time…
"Harry! Hello?" Ron was waving a hand in his face, trying to wake him from his trance. Harry looked around.
"Yeah?" said Harry, half thankful that Ron stopped his thinking, half wanting to just be alone with his depression.
"Ready to face those maniacs?" Ron jerked a thumb towards the Entrance Hall door. Harry looked around him. This could be the last time he ever saw Hogwarts. It felt strange, not right, to just leave…
"You'll be back, Harry." Ron said, expressing what Harry wanted to hear. Harry shrugged and headed towards the door.
"Now, Harry, don't go punching cameras when we get out there. People will think you've gone mad!"
Harry forced a laugh and pulled open the oak door. Flashes erupted instantly. Harry pushed his way past the shouting reporters, not even bothering to "no comment."
"Mr. Potter! How does it feel, defeating him?"
"Many people want to make today Potter Day! How does that make you feel?"
"What was it like at the final battle?"
"How does it feel to loose some of the ones so close to you?"
Harry broke through the mass of cameras, looking behind him to see Ron at his heels.
"Mad…absolutely mad…" Ron muttered under his breath. Harry made a noise of agreement, half walking, and half jogging towards Hogsmeade. The journalists persisted, though, and jogged along behind him, still shouting questions. They reached Hogsmeade, and, with a flick of his wand, Harry disapparated…
The sweet smell of Mrs. Weasley's cooking drifted over them as Harry and Ron entered the Burrow. The usual sensation of security and happiness did not come, however. Harry walked into the kitchen where Mrs. Weasley was bent over the stove, cooking something that appeared extremely complicated. Harry took a seat at the table, setting his bag down on the ground. Mrs. Weasley straightened up and caught sight of Harry and Ron sitting at the table.
"Harry! Ron! Oh, wonderful! " She said smiling slightly. Harry did a double take. Mrs. Weasley's hair looked dirty and unkempt. Her eyes were swollen and red and her usual rosy face was a sickly pale. Harry felt a pang of guilt.
It's all my fault… She's upset because of the battle. She lost a son because of me…
Mrs. Weasley made her way over to him and brought him into a hug. Harry was slightly surprised. Shouldn't she be upset with him right now? When she pulled away she looked him over.
"How are you feeling, dear?"
Harry didn't want to answer and said what he knew would distract her.
"A little hungry, actually, Mrs. Weasley. You wouldn't have something would you?"
Mrs. Weasley smiled at him. He couldn't help but notice how each smile seemed out of place how it seemed forced. Harry felt a hand rest on his and he turned to see Ginny had joined them.
"Hey," she said. Harry squeezed her hand, keeping his eyes away.
"There you are, Harry," said Mrs. Weasley, placing a steaming plate of what looked like the contents of the entire kitchen in front of him.
"Thanks," Harry said before digging in. Honestly, he wasn't hungry. He should be. He hadn't really eaten since the day before… Harry was reminded of the time at Grimwauld Place. He had sat there with the Weasley family, just after their Dad had been bitten. He had sat there, drinking butterbeer just to have something to do with his hands…
"Hermione!" Ron exclaimed from beside him. Harry looked up to see Hermione standing in the doorway, her appearance similar to Mrs. Weasley's. She took a shaky breath and said,
"I-I thought I should c-come and say hi," she said weakly, though bravely attempting a smile. Ron stood up and took her in his arms. Hermione pulled away quickly, a look of guilt and depression in her eyes. Ron blushed and took his seat again.
"Hi Harry," said Hermione. Harry pulled out the chair next to him, gesturing for her to sit down. Hermione shook her head.
"No, I just came to say hi. I d-didn't come to the Hospital W-Wing so I thought I w-would now." She turned away, but stopped and Ron called after her.
"Come on, Hermione," Ron said, "We miss seeing you. I know you're upset, we all are—" Hermione whirled around.
"Don't --say--another—word," she said fiercely. "Have you even had time to think about this? It's never going to be "The Twins" anymore! You saw George at the battle!" She shouted, her voice becoming louder as she spoke. "Every time someone slips and says 'Fred and George' we'll all have to remember! We'll have to remember that he's gone! You just don't get it!" Her voice quivered and said whispered, "He's gone…" she slide down the wall, sobbing into her hands. Ron was standing, looking furious.
"I do get it! He was my brother! I spent my whole life with him! I get that George is on suicide watch!"
"STOP IT!" She exclaimed, cutting him off, but Ron wasn't done yet.
"Look, I know her was your boyfriend for a month or two--"
"Fiancé, Ron!" She interrupted. Ron blinked. "We were going to tell everyone the day of the battle, so don't pretend like you were the only one close to him!"
"Would everyone just stop it!" Ginny exclaimed. She was looking at Harry, his head in his hands. "Everyone just… shut up."
"Harry?" Ron said, concerned. Harry held onto Ginny's hand, trying to keep himself steady.
"Fred died to save Hermione. I think that's how he would have wanted to go."
"Oh, how would you know?" Hermione snapped. Harry looked up.
"Because if anyone had to die, don't you think they would want to die to serve a purpose? Maybe to save someone they love?" Harry said, eyes narrowed. "He died a hero and he would have wanted us to do the things he loved most. He would want us to laugh and live!"
Mrs. Weasley stood by the stove, a blank expression on her face. She looked hollow, lifeless. Her cheery expressions seemed dead now. She looked away from everyone, returning to her cooking. Hermione brushed away her tears and departed to her room. Ron stood to go after her but Ginny held him back.
She gave him a small sympathetic smile. "Let me go."
Do you ever feel like breaking down?
Do you ever feel out of place?
Like somehow you just don't belong
And no one understands you
Hermione stared at the ceiling of Ginny's room, or at least she tried to. Her eyes were clouded with tears. She held up her hand above her face, watching her ring gleam on her finger.
Fred's arm felt secure around her shoulders as they watched an old muggle movie in the twins flat. Hermione wasn't sure where they had gotten the TV set and decided she didn't want to know. Fred reached for the remote and clicked the 'pause' button.
"Hey! That's a good part!" Hermione protested. Fred had a serious look on his face and Hermione hushed herself.
"Fred, you okay, hun?" She said, concerned. Fred looked into her eyes, grinning. Hermione smiled back still worried about what was coming.
"Yes?" She said, wondering what in the world could get him this worked up.
"I…um…I love you." Hermione's smile widened. "I love you too."
"Well, hypothetically," he began, speaking faster now. "Hypothetically, what if I asked you to marry me?"
Hermione felt her mouth drop. Her mind felt stunned. Se couldn't think of a single thing to say. Fred pulled out a small box and opened it to reveal a simple gold band with a square diamond placed gracefully on top.
"Oh my god…" She whispered in a high pitched voice. "Oh my god!" She exclaimed, finding her voice.
"So pretend I didn't say 'hypothetically.' Hermione, will you marry me?"
Hermione let out a teary laugh and threw her arms around him.
"Of course! But you would have to stay with me forever!" She whispered into his ear. He wrapped his arms around her and said,
"Till death do us part…"
Do you ever wanna run away?
Do you lock yourself in your room?
With the radio on turned up so loud
That no one hears you screaming
Hermione's breath hitched and she buried her face in the pillow. Why had he jumped in front of her? He had so much left to live for… He had said so before…
"So people pay to sit on the ground and watch movies?" Fred said incredulously. Hermione nodded, grinning at the confused expression on his face.
"Just give it a chance. You'll love it!" She said, taking his hand. She loved their dates. They always carried that thrill of opportunity. It was like anything could happen…
"What are we seeing anyway?" He asked curiously. Hermione shushed him and pointed to an empty space on the grass. The movie was starting just as they took their seats.
The movie was the old Superman. At one point, Fred asked if Muggles could really fly. Hermione laughed and corrected him. Fred made it a goal to make Hermione laugh at the most inappropriate times, like when things started to explode.
"Poor people… So much to live for… Just like us actually; lots to live for…"
Hermione hushed him, pointing to the screen. A woman was falling off a building, screaming for help. Fred leaned over and whispered,
"You know, I'll always save you if you fall off an impossibly tall building."
"I'll always save you…" Hermione squeezed her eyes shut, keeping the tears from falling. She didn't want anyone to save her anymore. No one should have to loose their life for her every again. So she made a vow. She was never going to let someone get close enough to save her. She didn't need saving…
To be hurt
To feel lost
To be left out in the dark
To be on the edge of breaking down
And no one's there to save you
No you don't know what it's like
She would be forever single and keep everyone safe. And suddenly, she completely understood how Harry felt for these past few years. Keep everyone away, and no one gets hurt…
Welcome to my life...
So... What do you think? I kind of like this one...REVIEW, please! I got... 3 for the last chapter... kind of saddening.
I have decided to re-write RtL. Not now, don't worry. But after the Epilogue is done and all that...
Plase look at the summaries in my profile. Let me know which sounds best!
The song is "Welcome to my Life" by Simple Plan.