AN - Sooo. This is probably one of my personal favorites out of all the things I've done. I'm a notorious pan-shipper, and although I ship Ginny/Harry, I think I ship Ginny/Neville a tiny, teeny bit more. And this is my contribution to the horribly under-staffed, angst-filled Gin/Nev cause. For now. Even if this IS mostly HP/GW.
This takes place pre-epilogue but post-DH (as a lot of my HP fics do). This fic is basically a letter written to Neville from Ginny on the night before Harry's year's graduation - I like to imagine she folded it up on his pillow for him to find. Or something. Basically, it's just a summing up of all they've been through in a friendly sort of way...
Anything you recognize I don't own.
Review or Neville will get stuck in the disappearing stair-step on his way up to Gryffindor tower... again ...and we all know this makes for an unhappy Neville! Post AN – This has been totally edited and quite revised. Also, I'd like to add that I now currently ship Ginny/Nev WAY more than Ginny/Harry. But Lavender/Nev is pretty freaking awesome, too. Anyway, even if you've already read, you may want to reread, because I've addd quite a lot.
Post AN – This has been totally edited and quite revised. Also, I'd like to add that I now currently ship Ginny/Nev WAY more than Ginny/Harry. But Lavender/Nev is pretty freaking awesome, too. Anyway, even if you've already read, you may want to reread, because I've addd quite a lot.
Are you aware that you haven't smiled in over four hours?
I know, Nev, because I've been sitting, curled up in an armchair by the fire watching you. You've gone through the motions; nodding, chit-chatting, biting you fingernails like it's going out of style (but really, Neville? It was never in style in the first place!) but no smiles. That's not at all like you - the you I know.
But don't worry - I won't bother asking why you haven't smiled in so long. It's pointless. You know and I know, so I'm in no position to force you to say it. That would simply be cruel, and I fancy myself a civil person, despite all that I've been forced to do. I'll move on to lighter subjects, and I'll smile to myself (since you seem so dead-set against doing it). I can't promise, however, that this concept of avoiding cruelty will seem nearly as attractive to me as it does now if you keep up this surly attitude all day tomorrow, as well!
Speaking of cruelty, it's always seemed like all your teachers and classes have given you such cause to grieve. Except for Herbology and Professor Sprout - and here, when writing the history books, people might speculate about the probability of your grade in that class merely being a fluke, but I - and everyone else who has known you personally - know otherwise.
You're going to be graduating tomorrow, love. Doesn't that just terrify you? Bloody hell, I'm terrified for you. Despite all of our moaning and groaning over the years, I'm going to miss it as much as you (and don't you even think of telling me you won't miss it! I know you, Neville Longbottom, you can't lie to me!) I have to say, though – I hate the way everyone's trying to ignore it. It's over, Neville. The war's over, school's over. It'll never be the same again. It'll never be you and I talking Quidditch in front of the fire, or watching Hermione and Ron flirt, or visiting Hogsmeade with Luna, or laughing at Peeves. These people, who fought in the war and who changed our lives forever, these exact people, we'll never be all together again. Actually, we really haven't been all together for a while – that's the miserable thing about school, someone's always graduating. I can't quite put it into words, but doesn't it just strike you as desolate? I know it was a war, and I know it was the worst times of our lives, but I think it will also always be the best. I also think this avoiding of the fact is silly and childish - and children is one of the many things we no longer are - and childhood is one of the things we won't be able to get back.
Harry proposed to me.
There, I got it out - I know, I know, it came out of no where, but I've just been dieing to tell someone, but I can't stand the girly squealing and carrying on, and since you probably won't get this letter for a good couple of hours, (and I really can't see you squealing, at least) I can have it off my chest and stay out of the public's eye for a little while longer. But yes, Harry proposed - and of course I accepted. And I've also decided that I won't be staying for my N.E.W.T.S - so I'll be graduating with you lot. I'm so excited, Neville! But I'm excited and I'm terrified and I'm thrilled and I'm absolutely bloody miserable. Not all over the engagement, of course, but over everything. I mean, I really do love him; what more could I really want than Harry? But somehow… I'm just not that happy. Anxious, excited, nervous, and happy, but not happy alone. Merlin, Neville, what could possibly be wrong with me? Everything and nothing all at once, perhaps.
But this letter is about you, not me.
Have you noticed how drastically the world has changed around us, love? Not in the obvious respect, I mean - I'm not talking about how he committed genocide and broke so many lives and homes - but in the smaller ways. Either way, the world is crumbling at our feet. So many problems. I think of these and realize, no wonder you haven't smiled in so long - but then I think of all our victories, miniscule and ridiculously huge and it becomes a much more complex mystery. Our whole livesbecome a much more complex mystery.
Sure - I haven't suffered near the hardships you have (don't think your sadness has been lost in poor Harry's; you have not been forgotten, Neville. Not by me, anyway). Sure - I've always been far more optimistic than you. Sure - this has been the most terrible year of our lives and despite our great victory, all we can see is great loss. Sure - we are about to leave (most likely forever) the place that has been our home for so many years.
But still. You have no excuse, Neville. We are saved and we are not stupid. We can rebuild, we can learn to trust again and, yes, it will take effort, and, yes, we have many losses to accommodate for, but we will survive. You will survive.
And you were a hero! You told me, later, that it was just an act, remember? I tired to convince you otherwise, but you acted so stubborn, so stubborn that I'm sure that all of that time we spent together this year must've ended up rubbing a bit of me off on you. So for once I will give in and say that, at the very least you acted the part of a hero well. For your sake I'll stick to that story, because no matter how many time I tell you that you aren't that good of an actor you still won't listen.
I know I'm going about this in a terribly round-about way, but do not mourn the loss of your childhood, Neville. We were never children, we never had childhood. We were born in a time of death and destruction and grief, and our only hope is that it really is over and that at least our children might be happy. I almost- well, I almost appreciate the war. It made me the person I am, and it made you the person you are. I happen to like who I am, and I love you, so maybe it's all for the best. I don't know. Actually, I don't know much at all, but I doknow that there's a life waiting for us out there, somewhere. I expect to see you living it with the same strength I saw you fight with to make sure it would be there in the first place.
Love you dearly, see you tomorrow;