Hey just a quick note!
I will be going back through an improving some of the chapters. I think I really didn't portray Ginny well in the beginning and it's be bugging me to fix it for a while. So you won't need to re-read if you don't want, but hopefully it'll make more sense and be more in-character.
Nightmares and Mornings
Harry turned slowly to face Sirius, a lopsided smile still on his face. In a green flash he crumpled to the floor. Harry couldn't tear his eyes away from the nightmare, couldn't wake up. He was trapped. He felt himself turn again, and Dumbledore stood before him, a kind twinkle in his eyes and a smile tugging at his face. Harry pointed his wand at him, and he too crumpled…
Hermione appeared in front of him.
"No, please, not her."
Harry begged, yet his pleads fell on false ears as grief ripped through him as his friend met the same fate.
Ron gave him a triumphant grin, that would be seen after beating someone at wizard chess, or winning a Quidditch.
"Take me instead, he doesn't know anything, I'll tell you anything, just don't hurt him." Harry raised his voice, but his body wasn't his own, he raised his wand, muttered the spell, and his best friend lay dead.
Harry knew who was next before he turned to her as the same nightmare had plagued him for weeks.
"I'll do anything!" He heard himself shout, yet the dream progressed as if no interruption was made.
Her beautiful face was in front of him, so close he could count the freckled on her nose, smell her flowery shampoo and gaze into the depths of her chocolate eyes. A sweet smile filled her face.
"Not Ginny, take me, DAMN IT, TAKE ME INSTEAD! PLEASE! I'LL DO ANYTHING! ANYTHING!-"
He raised he wand, and it hovered over her heart.
"HARRY WAKE UP!"
Harry finally wrenched himself from the nightmare to see a pair of chocolate brown eyes staring back at him.
"Ginny…" He heard himself whisper. "You're alright."
He hugged her fiercely, willing the images to leave him. Knowing she was alright, he started to calm down.
His face was wet from the few tears that had spilled, and his pyjamas clung to him. Suddenly he felt embarrassed, shamed and vulnerable. He pushed Ginny off and sat up, discretely trying to get rid of the tears with the back of his sleeve.
He searched the room to find that he'd woken up everyone in the house. He ran a hand through his raven hair to try and get rid of his shame and felt it helped somehow.
"I'm sorry, you should all go back to sleep. Sorry I woke you up." He apologised. Fred and George mumbled something like "it's fine" and left the room. Mrs Weasley looked like she wanted to say something but Mr Weasley led her knowingly out the room, but not before she thew Harry a motherly glance.
As soon as the door closed Ron, Hermione and Ginny started firing questions at him.
"How long has this been going on?"
"Why didn't you tell us?"
"Are you okay?"
"Um, well this was.. The first time. I didn't want you to worry, and I'm fine." He lied uneasily, but his friends saw through him in a second.
"Yeah right it was the first time! You've had that dream before back at Hogwarts!" Ron exclaimed.
"And you're obviously not fine." Ginny backed up, folding her arms and legs crossly.
"Okay, well I've had it once or twice before but-"
"Since when?" Hermione asked
"What? Well…I don't know-"
"If you've only had it a few times how can you not remember when it started?" Ginny asked.
"Because…" but he faltered after looking at each of their determined faces…There was no use lying to them. So he sighed and ran both his hands through his hair before continuing. "Okay, I've been having that dream on and off the past year or so, the only things that's changed is the people that I kill, no he kills, that I can't save…But it's gotten worse since…his…Funeral."
Unwilling to say Dumbledore's name, they all understood who he was referring to.
"Harry…We could of helped you-" Ginny started
"No you couldn't." He dismissed then asked the question playing on his mind, "Was I talking in my sleep?"
The others seemed to avert their eyes from him slightly, before he got a vague "You were mumbling a bit." from Ron.
Harry shut his eyes wondering how much they'd really heard. Obviously more than they were letting on. He tried to think back to what he could have said but the more he thought about it the more his memories seemed to slip away from him.
"Just… You go back to bed. I'm sorry I woke you." He said, aiming really at Ginny, knowing how stubborn she was. This was not how he'd imagined spending his first day at the Burrow, but at least Ginny didn't seem to hate him for the break-up. It relieved him to know that they could at least still be friends.
Hermione got up, taking the hint. But Ginny stayed, not convinced. So Harry couldn't resist but taking one of her folded hands and rubbing the back soothingly, "Thank you for worrying about me. I'm okay now…Really." He gave her his most reassuring smile as he realised he really did feel better that they'd all been there to support him. At this she relaxed, smiling back at him.
"Okay. Goodnight Harry." She said, slipping her warm fingers out of Harry's and climbing off the bed. Harry's mind jumped back to when they'd been curled up together under their tree next to lake at Hogwarts, hands entwined. Harry remembered feeling like the warmth radiating from Ginny's palm pulsed up through his fingers, up his arm and warmed his chest on the cold, snowy day. He had to shake his head and flex his fingers slightly as the tingled from the attention. Ginny and Hermione walked quietly out the door, closing it behind them.
Ron looked slightly at a loss what to do as Harry went back to staring at his fingers absent mindedly. He settled for clapping him roughly on the shoulder instead of any mushy words of comfort, wriggling back inside his own bed.
"Ron?" Harry asked
"What did you hear?"
"Stuff like, not him or her, take me, please…don't."
"How much did everyone else hear?" Harry said, trying to move more towards his point without Ron realising.
"Well it was just mumbling as you jerked about to be honest."
"Oh...Right." Harry whispered, embarrassed and settled back into his own bed.
She'd heard everything. She knew how vulnerable he really was. Hopefully she hadn't figured out just how much he cared yet, otherwise she'd be hard to resist this Summer. But here he was, talking nonsense again, she wouldn't want him back. Not someone as smart, beautiful, talented and simply wonderful person like her.
Ron turned back over and lay on his side.
"Harry?" Ron asked hesitantly, and Harry got the feeling that this was going to be something important, "You still like Ginny don't you?"
Harry cleared his throat slightly as he stared at the opposite wall. "Uh, yeah sure she's a great friend."
"Right, but...You know what I mean." Ron pressed.
Harry thought about it for a minute, wondering what Ron was on about and starting to get slightly nervous.
"Well I didn't break up with her that long ago and it was a hard choice to make."
Ron paused, "Right..." still not satisfied with the answer.
Harry sighed loudly, "Yes Ron I do still like Ginny." He said.
Ron didn't respond for a while and Harry wondered if he was already asleep - it wouldn't be the first time.
"Well how did you know when you stopped liking Ginny and started...LIKING Ginny?"
Ah. This was about Hermione Harry realised, wondering why of all times Ron was asking now. Harry guessed it was because it was his first day back and Ron had been thinking about this for a while. Though that still didn't make this any less awkward.
"Um, I dunno Ron. I guess I got unexplainable jealous and um... Started thinking of her in a...'non-friend' way." Harry tried to answer, hoping that Ron would be so obtuse and asking him what he meant, knowing that he was already blushing fiercely as he was reminded of all the times he'd thought about Ginny before he even realised that's what he'd felt.
"Do you think you like someone then, Ron?" Harry asked, referring to Hermione.
"Oh no, of course not" Ron answered too quickly.
Harry settled back down again, thinking the conversation was over.
"You know, Harry, if we ever get out of this…this…war. You can go back to um...liking...my sister. You know if you want to. And she wants you to. I just mean- it's okay with me..."
Surprised, Harry felt his heart swell for his best friend. "Ron, that means a lot to me."
"Yeah well...It's been said now." Ron replied uncomfortably.
"Cool." Harry agreed.
Soon Ron's snores filled the room, and Harry had no intention of falling asleep. The nightmare would only come back again. So he decided to go down to the kitchen for a midnight snack, as wasn't unusual by his standards.
He climbed out of his bed and grabbed his jumper to keep him warm before creeping out of the room, wand lighting the way softly.
Harry made his way down the twisted stairs as quietly as he could, cussing slightly as he stepped on the far noisier ones, and jumping over the invisible one -a long story that involved Fred and George's bad experiments. Harry navigated his way around the clutter as best as he could and reached the fridge safely, the light from it blinding him momentarily as he realised that he'd left his glasses upstairs. Looking inside he found a few left over home baked cookies -to which he silently thanked Mrs Wealsley of whom he suspected left them there usually because she knew of his midnight excursions- and a glass of cold milk.
Harry froze with half a cookie in his mouth as he felt someone watching him. He quickly turned to find Ginny blinking back at the light coming from his wand.
"It's only me." She assured as Harry lowered his wand. "Didn't want to go back to sleep?" She asked, sitting down at the table, copper hair swinging behind her. -It had gotten long- Harry noted. He set the plate of cookies down in the middle of the table.
"Not yet." He said, "Do you want some milk?"
Harry set his own glass down and walked back to the cupboard, preferring to do it the non-magical way.
"How come you're up then?" He asked, pouring the milk and passing it over.
"Heard you get up." She answered simply, dunking one of the cookies in the milk and biting into it. She closed her eyes briefly as she munched, a small smile lighting her face at the taste.
"Just like old times." She whispered, giving him a proper smile, which he returned. He reflected back when these exact scenarios had happened last time. Where he'd not wanted to sleep and Ginny would come down and keep him company. By the end of the holiday it'd become a regular occurance instead of a way to bypass nightmares and away from the judgements of the rest of the world. Just him, and Ginny, and whatever overnight snack they found in the fridge, feeding each other and laughing quietly away at their antics, sneaking in glances and kisses here and there. Forgetting themselves and the world around them and just being teenagers.
"How've you been holding up?" She asked, knowing Moody's death was a serious blow not to mention the time spent at the Dursley's.
"I'm fine." He answered predictably, chomping on his own cookie. She gave him a look that he interpreted as 'Really? Is that the best you can do?' and he began to feel slightly uncomfortable. Seeming to sense this, she slid her hand slowly across the table, offering it to him.
"We're all here you know." She assured, seeming to think her statement over, "I'm here." She amended.
Harry gulped, touching the end of his fingers to hers as she reached and held his, and he struggled to keep a smile off his face and failed.
"I know." He replied, looking straight into her eyes for the first time since he'd gotten here. "How are you holding up?"
She shrugged gently and started to trace gentle patterns on his palm. "I'm fine." She teased lightly, imitating him slightly.
He smiled before it dropped off his face, focusing on their hands, both of them seeming to have forgotten their snacks.
"I miss you." He said quietly, refusing himself to look at her face, but at the quiet that descended forced himself to look at her face again. She was smiling softly but her eyes looked sad. She got up from the table and for a minute he feared she was walking away, but instead she walked around to sit next to him. Her flowery scent hitting him as his heart sped up unwillingly. She slowly wrapped her arms around his neck and pulled him into a hug which he returned hesitantly at first before sliding his arms around her waist and hugging her properly. Sighing contently as she whispered in his ear "I miss you too."
They hugged for a while, unable to tear the moment apart as Harry buried his face against her neck.
"I'm sorry." Harry apologised softly, as if too loud a sound would cause her to disappear, "I shouldn't be...I mean we shouldn't-"
"I know. It's okay." She reassured as he pulled back slightly but they stayed in each others arms. They searched each other's faces, each approaching the unknown.
"It's not fair." Harry grumbled, closing his eyes and resting his forehead against hers.
"It's okay. No one's watching us here. We can be...ourselves. You don't have to hide from me." She whispered gently, her breath playing again his face and he sighed.
"But I broke up with you..." Harry ventured, still close.
Ginny hummed softly as they remained for a few minutes quietly and contently. Harry pulled back, rubbing at his eyes.
"I should-We should go to sleep." He said.
"Harry-" She begun, her eyelids lowering as she cupped his face, leaning closer. Their lips met in a slow chaste kiss as Harry's hand wove in her long hair, tilting his head and deepening the kiss. Revelling in the sensations pulsing through his body, before he pulled away quickly and stood up.
"No, i'm sorry, I-I can't." He stuttered as she looked up at him, before nodding slightly and rising too. They climbed the stairs together after clearing the dishes in silent companionship, but a slight tension between them. They reached Ginny's room door as they turned to each other. Harry leaned forward as if to kiss her goodnight as was per custom before leaning back as if never having made the action, eyes averted from Ginny's and he muttered goodnight. She did the same as she went into her room and he climbed the stairs to his, mentally whacking himself for tonight's actions as he did. He opened the door to Ron's snoring and climbing over him to throw himself onto his own bed, groaning loudly as he punched his pillow into a better state and falling back against it, staring at the blurred black ceiling, his heart and mind both racing.