Prologue: The Train Station
Ok, so first up I have to tell you all that I am old now; well 'old' is a bit of a stretch and besides, I still don't feel old, so how bout we stick with 'older.' This means I'm looking back on my journey with one particularly famous man with messy black hair, green eyes, glasses and that crazily famous scar, from a distance. A lot of this is taken from my pensieve memories. Yeah we got one, handy things I tell you … especially when disciplining the kids; there's none of that guesswork about who did what. They learned right fast not to lie to us, but enough of that. That's a whole other story. This is the story of our journey to get together, and all the ups and downs we took. It's been kind of fun really, looking back; sometimes I've wanted to slap my younger self and far too often I wanted to roll my eyes at her. But you know what? She was having a hard time back then. The famous Harry Potter was not interested in her at all and she was smitten. Head over heels smitten with the poor boy. So yeah I kinda feel a bit of soft fondness for her so I've tried not to roll my eyes too hard in writing about her experiences. But anyways, I had a point here. What was it? Oh right … I wanted to say that at times I may sound older than the age I'm supposed to be. Sorry bout that, but hey. At least you know the memories are accurate. Anyways, since everyone knows Harry's version of what happened what with that 7 book biography that's out there, and that he says is pretty accurate if a little sentimental at times, I thought it would be interesting to see another angle. So, here's my side of our crazy story.
For as long as I could remember I was in love with Harry Potter. Well, possibly not in love, but there was definitely a huge amount of hero worship going on. Which was funny because no-one had ever laid eyes on him, no-one really even knew if he actually existed. And frankly, even if we did know he existed, none of us properly knew what he looked like. All we knew was that he 'looked like his dad' but people say that all the time and in many cases it's only peripherally true. The pictures of James Potter that I pored over in 'A History of Modern Magic' were too blurry for me to see what he looked like anyway. Harry Potter was just a barely formed image in my mind. He had dark hair, a cool air about him, steely eyes and of course that famous scar stood out lividly on his face. So when I saw the boy on the platform that day my heart didn't sing, I didn't gasp and scream 'Oh my God! It's Harry Potter! Marry me!' I didn't even faint; I did none of the things my books taught me that a heroine is supposed to do upon first seeing her hero. Instead I walked with my mum and brothers and smiled at the nervous looking boy in oversized clothes. Mum being Mum got all nurturing and helped him through the gate to the platform. He was sweet and seemed nice, but nothing told me that this was Harry Potter.
How, then, did I kick myself when Fred and George came barrelling out of the carriage. Well, not quite right then; there were the usual smart comments to wind Mum up, something about a Hogwarts toilet seat. Worked as usual; Mum always got in a flap when the two of them began with their suggestions about pranks they were going to pull. Usually they were joking, but they were serious often enough for Mum to be always worried about what they said. You just had to love Fred and George: they always knew how to make me smile even when I was going to be the only one left at home with Mum. I was in high spirits with them. But then they said it.
'Hey, Mum, guess what? Guess who we met on the train?'
I saw a black head whisk out of sight in one of the windows when they said that, and looked at the spot it had disappeared from quizically, wondering who wanted to hide away like that.
'You know that black-haired boy who was near us in the station? Know who he is?'
What? No way! My thoughts were wrenched away from the mystery back head right back to Mum and the boys in that minute. And of course, me being me, I had to come out with the dumbest comment ever.
'Oh, Mum, can I go on the train and see him, Mum, oh please …'
What the hell was I thinking? It makes me blush even now to think of that day. Was there any worse possible way to behave about someone who I had a crush on? Ok, I was 10. That still doesn't excuse that sheer idiocy of that idea. Get on the train to ogle him like a zoo animal? Yeah, way to make him notice you in a good way, Weasley! Definitely un-heroine-like behaviour! Thank goodness Mum was saner than me. She squashed the idea good and proper, and I was kept from making an even greater fool of myself than usual. Still, at the time I was not impressed. I believe pouting may have happened, possibly even recalcitrant muttering and there was definite foot stomping.
Then the train began to move and I remembered: this was the last time I would see any of the boys til Christmas. I just couldn't leave it with me standing docilely by Mum's side, now could I? Mum tried to grab me as I began to run after the train but I don't have 6 older brothers for nothing. I dodged out of her reach and raced as fast as I could, the tears still on my face from crying about wanting to go to school too, especially now that my beloved hero, Harry Potter, was going to be there. But as I caught sight of Fred and George waving their backsides out the windows at me I couldn't help laughing. I would miss them and Ron so much this year, possibly Percy a little less, but I was finally the only one left at home. It was a bit depressing really. But at least now I could say I had actually met the great Harry Potter. When talking to my friends I would skim over the fact that we didn't actually interact much. He asked my Mum a question, I smiled like an idiot. But if I told it right it would be so much cooler than that. We would have talked, maybe I would say I was the one to direct him how to get through the gate. The idea made me grin; I wished I had been the one to tell him.
I looked up then, past the window where Fred and George were entertaining their friend Lee Jordan, and caught a pair of green eyes staring wistfully out of the window. Framed by glasses they stared at me as the train picked up speed. There was a look in those eyes that told of immense pain and the memory of them haunted me for the rest of that school year. I knew somehow that that was him; that was Harry Potter.
It was me who bugged Mum to make sure Harry was included in the Christmas gift owl-out. It had tickled me no end to be told that Ron, my dearest brother Ron, had made friends with Harry Potter. In the back of my mind swept the mantra: if Ron's his friend maybe he'll visit, maybe he'll notice me, maybe we'll get married. At that point I would blush furiously and get busy doing whatever it was I was supposed to be doing. But the thought persisted, and I did all I could to be sure that Mum never forgot him. Plus, the memory of those eyes, old before their time, staring at me out the window of that train still stayed with me as I worked with Mum. I knew somehow that he needed us, needed a family. Mum was great about it, of course. She has this thing about strays and of course we all knew his story so everyone felt sorry for him. The poor kid, orphaned by You-Know-Who, left to live with his muggle relatives. It was the stuff of legend; the stuff of epic romance!
It didn't seem long before we were back at that station waiting to collect the boys at the end of the year, and I was desperate to meet Harry Potter for real this time. The story about his adventure with the Philosopher's Stone was already the glorious tale of myth and adventure that is told to impressionable kids today, and he'd taken my brother with him. Oh how I wished I was at school too so I could have gone with them, and Harry could have rescued me from some great evil and we'd be happy together forever. Yeah, I admit I was a bit of a romantic. And a sappy romantic at that. What the hell did I need with rescuing anyways? A strong independent girl should save herself. But that was always the fantasy: that Harry would rescue me and we would live happily ever after. Back then I didn't know that fairy tales weren't real and being saved didn't necessarily lead to 'happy ever after' especially at the age of 10. But anyways, that's a story for later … at that time there I was clutching my mother's hand tightly, craning my neck to be the first one to see … not my brothers, no. I wanted to see Harry Potter. Then amongst the mass of people swarming off the train I saw his black head, and the shockingly green eyes. I stared at him in disbelief for a moment. Then I did the 'stupid comment' thing again!
'Harry Potter! Look, Mum, I can see …'
And then I saw that he had heard me and I wanted the world to go away so that I could pretend that I hadn't acted like that in front of the great Harry Potter. While Mum talked to him in quite a motherly way about his year and he thanked her ever so politely for the Christmas gifts, I was mentally kicking myself. He heard me! Mortifying! Unthinkable! No true heroine would ever allow the hero to hear her gawking at him like a crazed fan or anything. It was becoming depressingly obvious that this wonderful relationship between us was never going to work out. At the ripe old age of 10 I had to acknowledge that I was incapable of talking rationally around the object of my desires. I sighed.
This was clearly the end of what was destined to be the greatest romance the world had ever seen! Did I mention that as well as being a romantic, I was also very dramatic? I could have clasped my hand to my forehead and swooned and it would have been fitting for my mental state at the time: 'over dramatic romantic heroine 101' had not been lost on me. Yeah, so at the end of Harry's first year at school, things didn't look promising for little Ginny Weasley. But, I consoled myself, next year we were going to be at school together. I might actually be able to, you know … talk to him. Then we'd get married and … yeah you get the picture. I was still a bit hooked up on the 'happy ever after' thing back then. That would change …