Please Note: This is a re-post of the story created by zeropolis79, and he has given me permission to re-post the entire story as it stands. I would like to welcome all of his previous reviewers to this, as well as my loyal and faithful band that have followed me from "Harry Potter True Friends". New reviewers are welcome of course, and all reviews will be answered personally – each and every one! I believe that this is rare as most authors just answer questions in the next chapter. Please Note that my loyal and faithful band of reviewers will be answered first… as they have been with me the longest.
(The first few bits follow cannon, so there will not be much different – Ron though is the youngest in this fic and not Ron "Emotional Range of a Teaspoon" Weasley)
The First Year
Ginny Weasley was the sixth child and only daughter of Arthur and Molly Weasley. While Molly was a housewife, Arthur worked at the Ministry of Magic in the Misuse of Muggle Artefacts Office. He was the subject of ridicule at the Ministry due to his obsession with Muggles. People said he should snap his wand in half and live with the Muggles. She was the right size for her age and slim, like most girls her age. Her eyes were bright brown and her flaming red hair (a Weasley tradition) was worn in a long mane. At the time Ginny received her Hogwarts letter, three of her brothers were attending Hogwarts. Percy was in his fifth year and had just been made Gryffindor Prefect. Practical joker twins Fred and George were entering their third year. Her two oldest brothers had already attended and left Hogwarts. Bill was Head Boy – he left two years before and was now a Curse Breaker for the wizard bank Gringotts. Charlie was Prefect and Quidditch Captain for Gryffindor – he left the previous term. He started working with dragons in Romania soon after. Her younger brother Ron would be starting next year. Ginny wasn't liked very much by the family – she got the blame for almost anything. Her older brothers Bill and Charlie were always on her side though.
Money was very tight with the Weasleys, so Ginny had to go to Hogwarts using Bill's old robes, Charlie's old wand and books which had been used by her brothers. When the family went to Kings Cross station to catch the Hogwarts Express, she met Harry Potter for the first time.
The young, panicking boy with raven-colored hair, green eyes, and a lightning-shaped scar on his forehead heard the word 'muggle' and began to hope again. He searched for the source of the word and saw a family full of redheads. The mother, four boys, and one girl all had red hair. He watched as the oldest boy disappeared into the wall between platforms 9 and 10. While he was trying to figure out what had happened, a set of twins who'd apparently been lying to their mother over which one was which disappeared as well. Harry knew he'd better hurry up if he was going to talk to this family before they were all gone.
"Excuse me, excuse me!" he cried toward the mother.
"Hello dear," she said kindly. "First time at Hogwarts?" When Harry nodded the woman continued, "Its Ginny's first time as well." She pointed at the cute little girl with red hair and freckles, who waved shyly at him.
"That's the thing," Harry said, "I don't know how to…"
"Get onto the platform. Well, I can help you there…" Mrs. Weasley instructed the young boy how to get onto Platform Nine and Three-Quarters, and her twin boys helped him get his trunk into an empty car, finding out who he was in the process. Harry overheard them informing their family that they had met the 'Boy-Who-Lived.' The moment they heard this, Mrs. Weasley turned to her daughter. "NO asking him about what happened that night." She said.
"Would I do such a thing?" Ginny asked innocently.
"Yes you would." her mother replied.
Just before the train took off, Ginny Weasley shyly stuck her head into his compartment. "Is it alright if I sit here? Everywhere else is full."
Not seeing any particular reason to send her away, Harry said, "Sure. That's fine." He was relieved when the girl sat across from him and not next to him.
"Is it true?" the girl asked. "My brothers said you were Harry Potter."
He sighed and nodded. "Yes, but I don't remember much from that night. I just know the hell I've lived through since then."
The girl surveyed the boy in front of her and noticed that he was probably the only person on the train with more raggedy clothes than her family. Not only were this boy's clothes raggedy, but they fit him like a tent. "The stories about you say what a wonderful life you've been living since that night. What is your life really like?"
He took a deep breath. "I don't know what the wizard world's idea of a wonderful life is – but according to Hagrid, the gamekeeper at Hogwarts, Dumbledore told him to take me to my aunt and uncle's house – the Dursleys. They never told me about magic. They said my parents were drunks who died in a car crash and made me their slave!" The more he spoke, the angrier he got. "I had to cook, clean, do the gardening, wash the car, and anything else they could think of while their whale of a son Dudley – these are his hand-me-downs I'm wearing, by the way – sat around the house doing nothing unless he and his friends were beating me up! They have plenty of money – Vernon is the director of a huge Muggle company and brings home a fortune. They buy Dudley anything he wants but the only thing they ever bought for me was a £3 pair of glasses, and I went without food for four weeks to pay for them."
Ginny was shocked. "Really?" she asked, concerned. She could tell he was angry, but knew he wasn't angry at her.
"If I got better grades than that idiot, I'd get beaten. If I accidentally did magic, which I didn't know I could do, I got beaten. If Uncle Vernon had a bad day at work, I got beaten! Dudley got two bedrooms, but I got a little cupboard under the stairs! That's where my first Hogwarts letter was addressed to, 'the cupboard under the stairs,' so don't tell me that 'Great Man, Dumbledore' didn't know what's going on! Of course, they wouldn't let me have my letter, and after they kept on arriving, Uncle Vernon drove us all over the country trying to escape, just so I wouldn't know I was magical. Finally, Hagrid showed up on my birthday and told me who I am!"
By this point Ginny was crying and trying to hide it. "You should tell someone."
"I told a muggle teacher once, and he told my uncle! When I went back to school I turned his hair blue." He took a deep breath. "I am going to tell someone here. Hopefully someone will care enough about the 'Boy-Who-Lived' to stop him from being beaten by muggles! I don't know why Dumbledore hates me so much that he'd send me there, and I don't even care! I just hope I don't have to meet him!" Now Harry was crying, something he really didn't want to do. He hid his face, and in the process moved his hair, revealing his scar.
Trying to change the subject, Ginny said, "Well, at least you're away from those monsters now."
"I'm not going back! Not ever!" He smiled to himself. "I wonder what would happen if the wizarding newspaper – what's it called – 'The Daily Prophet' – received a letter from the 'Boy-Who-Lived' telling them about all the abuses he'd been put through because of Dumbledore. I also want to know why the headmaster of a school has the right to decide where I lived in the first place!"
"I think you should try to do it without involving the newspaper if possible."
"Yeah," Harry said, calming down. "Maybe someone here will listen. I still can't believe that stupid teacher believed the Dursleys' story about me falling backwards into a window!"
"What?" she asked, confused.
"This," said Harry, standing up and taking off his shirt. There were scars on his stomach and chest, not to mention the fact that he looked like a skeleton. But when he turned around, Ginny thought she was going to throw up. His back was completely scarred up, and it did look like he'd fallen through a window or something. She realized she didn't want to know what those monsters did to the savoir of her world.
After a few seconds, Harry put his shirt back on and sat down. Ginny's face was white as a ghost and she was speechless. "That's what that 'Great Man Dumbledore' left me to live with!"
That seemed to snap Ginny out of it. "Go to the school healer. I think her name is Madam Pomfrey. Tell her what happened."
About that time, the food trolley came by. "Anything off the cart, dears?"
Harry decided that he wanted some, and glanced at his companion, who was eying a package of sandwiches she'd brought with disappointment. From the look in her eyes he could tell she didn't really want them, and would much prefer eating candy.
"We'll take the lot!" Harry said with a grin as he pulled out a bunch of Galleons from his pocket.
As Ginny watched in shock, he bought a ton of candy to split with her. Once the lady was gone, she asked, "How did you pay for all that?"
"That's another thing. After years of having nothing of my own, Hagrid showed me I have a vault full of money at Gringotts! He only had me buy school robes, but I should've bought all new clothes! Even my pants are hand-me-downs!"
"Eww!" said Ginny, imagining the implications of that statement, "I did not need that mental image!"
"Sorry." They both laughed, the first time Harry had ever laughed.
"It's alright, Harry. I just can't believe anyone would be so cruel to you. My mum once told me that many wizarding families, including my own, wanted to adopt you, and demanded that Dumbledore tell them where you lived. He said that he couldn't tell us, but you were safe where you were, and it was for the best. Everyone trusted him. I guess they were wrong. I wonder what else he's lied about." She tentatively reached out and took his hand. "I'm sorry about what he's done to you, but not all magical people are like him, the same as all Muggles aren't like the Dursleys. I want to be your friend."
He looked in her eyes, planning to retort that she only wants to be friends with a celebrity or that she pities him. All he could see was caring. "Dudley and his gang would beat up anybody that wanted to be friends with me, so I don't know how to be a friend."
She tightened her grip on his hand. "I'll teach you. For now though, let's eat some candy." They started at his candy, and soon the pile was reduced by an inch. "Mum and I don't get on much" Ginny added. "She thinks I don't behave like a woman should do. I heard her tell Dad that she expects to get lots of letters home about me being in trouble than Fred and George combined." she finished.
"Doesn't she trust you?"
"Not really. Just because she thinks that way doesn't mean I am going to misbehave. I'm not interested in pulling pranks like Fred and George but I'm also not power mad like Percy."
Harry thought about this then said he needed the bathroom.
As Harry was leaving the bathroom, he heard a girl's voice yell, "Get away from me!"
A boy's voice followed, "I don't have to listen to you, Mudblood! Give me your money!"
Harry immediately rushed over to where the voices were and saw the backs of three boys, two of which were about Dudley's size. They had a little girl with bushy-brown hair against the wall. She was looking down and didn't notice him.
Having learned to move silently at the Dursleys' house, he easily got closer. Without making a sound, Harry shoved the closest bully into the others. While the bullies were still falling, Harry grabbed the girl's hand and said, "Let's go!" She allowed him to quickly lead her into his and Ginny's compartment before speaking.
"Thank you. I didn't catch your name."
When he seemed reluctant to say it, Ginny answered the question. "He's Harry Potter."
"Yes," said Harry patiently as he rolled back his bangs, revealing his famous scar.
"I've read all about you of course. I'm Hermione Granger. And you are?"
"Ginny Weasley. It's nice to meet you."
They started to share the candy as the bushy-haired girl sat next to Ginny. When Harry opened up his chocolate frog, it jumped toward the window, but Ginny caught it and returned it to Harry. "You've got to be careful with those. Whose card did you get?"
"Card?" asked Harry, causing her to show him what she meant.
"Dumbledore," she said with a frown. "Maybe you should throw it away."
"Or use it for spell practice when I learn some hexes."
"How come you don't like Dumbledore much?" Hermione asked. Harry and Ginny explained to her – she sat there open-mouthed.
"I know a hex that my brother Bill taught me," she said proudly.
"Show me," said Harry excitedly.
"It can't be done without a person to hex. I…"
At that moment the door opened, revealing a blond boy with two goons on either side of him – he was the same person Harry saw bullying Hermione for being muggle-born. He looked at Ginny and then Harry, ignoring Hermione. "Are you Harry Potter?"
"Yes I am," said Harry stiffly, recognizing the bigot he'd met a month before.
"I don't need to ask who you are," he said, looking at Ginny like she was an owl dropping. "Red hair, and a second-hand robe. You must be a Weasley."
She glared at him, slipping her wand out without anyone noticing as Draco turned his attention back to Harry.
"You'll soon find that some families are better than others. You don't want to hang around with the wrong sort. I can help you there. My name's Malfoy, Draco Malfoy." He extended his hand toward Harry, expecting him to shake it.
Harry looked at the outstretched hand. "I think I can tell the wrong sort for myself, thanks."
"I'd be careful if I were you, Potter," he said slowly. "Unless you're a bit politer you'll go the same way as your parents. They didn't know what was good for them, either. You hang around with riffraff like the Weasleys, a mudblood and that Hagrid, and it'll rub off on you."
"Bates Mocus!" said Ginny with her wand pointed at Draco.
"Wha…what did you?" he cried as mucus bats painfully came out of his nose and started attacking him. Harry and Hermione nearly fell off their chairs laughing when a wet spot appeared at the front of Malfoy's trousers. He ran off, followed closely by his bodyguards.
"Who was that boy, anyway?" asked Hermione.
"Draco Malfoy. His father is a Death Eater who claimed to be under the Imperius Curse after You-Know-Who was vanquished." Ginny said.
"How do you know he wasn't?" Hermione asked.
"Because of the way he and his family act like they're better than anybody else, bragging about how they're pure-bloods, like it makes a difference." Harry replied before Ginny could speak.
"Really?" asked Hermione with a frown.
"Yeah," agreed Harry, "He told me that people who don't come from magical families shouldn't go to Hogwarts when I met him a month ago in Diagon Alley. He didn't know who I was then."
The brown-haired girl looked rather nervous. "I don't come from a magical family."
Ginny reached out and shook Hermione's hand. "That honestly doesn't make a difference. However, you should watch out for bigots like Malfoy. Most of them end up in Slytherin."
"I'm hoping for Gryffindor myself," said Hermione, apparently relieved that Ginny and Harry didn't feel she shouldn't be at Hogwarts, "although Ravenclaw doesn't seem so bad."
"All of my family has been in Gryffindor," said Ginny, "So I guess that's where I'll end up."
Harry said, "I'll be happy as long as I'm not in Slytherin."
"Your parents were Gryffindors," said Hermione. "It's mentioned in most accounts of your story." She then turned toward Ginny. "How many other spells have you learned? I've only tried a few simple spells myself, but they've all worked. For example, Oculus Repairo." Harry's formerly taped glasses fixed themselves. "You two had better change into your school robes. We'll be arriving soon. Oh, by the way. Have either of you seen a toad? A boy named Neville has lost one."
"No," said Ginny, "No toads have come to this compartment. If I had one, I'd purposely lose it. My mum tried to get me to take a pet rat."
"Eww!" said Hermione.
"Exactly. He used to belong to my brother Percy. He became a prefect and my parents gave him an owl. My baby brother Ron got the rat after I refused to take it. I would love an owl of my own though." Harry made a mental point to arrange to get Ginny one as soon as he could.
Before long, the girls left the compartment so Harry could change (while Ginny changed in the loo).
When they arrived at Hogwarts, it was time for them to be sorted. Ginny was confident she would be sorted into Gryffindor because all her brothers were in that house. When the Sorting Hat was put onto Hermione's head, it considered all the options and then announced she would be a Gryffindor. Harry came later. The hat wanted to put him in Slytherin, but he asked for it to put him somewhere else. Sensing the bond between him and Hermione, it placed him in Gryffindor. Ginny was one of the last and she got her wish – "GRYFFINDOR!"
The three worked together on their schoolwork and got high marks except for Potions when the work was marked by Professor Snape – the greasy haired teacher who was head of Slytherin House and always favoured his own house. After two weeks, Harry was made Seeker on the Gryffindor Quidditch Team. This was after an incident where Harry had saved something of Neville Longbottom's from smashing after Malfoy had grabbed it. This pleased Ginny, who was a big Quidditch fan. Her brother Charlie was legendary at Hogwarts for his Seeker skills and the twins Fred and George were Beaters. The new team captain told her and Harry that Charlie could have played for England if 'he hadn't gone off chasing dragons.' It surprised Harry though since Professor McGonagall, his head of house had to ask Dumbledore for permission to allow Harry to be on the team and have his own broom.
Ginny dragged Harry to the Hospital Wing the day after term started, and the nurse, Madam Pomfrey, was just as stunned as Ginny to find out the harm that had come to Harry. He told her everything and she believed him. She photographed everything before she healed most of the scars, which was easy to do since they were non-magical, but some were unable to be removed. She prescribed potions to help increase and balance his weight along with a good diet.
After their first week, Harry got an invite to visit Hagrid at his hut. He went along with Ginny and Hermione. Hagrid introduced them to his loveable dog Fang (who turned out to be a wimp), mentioned his love for dragons and introduced them to his cooking – rock cakes which were rock hard. Hagrid mentioned he had to go to Diagon Alley or Hogsmeade for Hogwarts business on occasion and if anyone wanted anything picked up, just let him know and he would get it next time he went. Ginny and Hermione made their way back to the castle while Harry waited a moment so he could ask Hagrid something.
"I want to do something for my friend, Ginny," he began, "She's wearing the robes of her older brother Bill and her brother Percy offered her his old rat. Next time you go to Diagon Alley or Hogsmeade, could you pick her up a complete set of girls Hogwarts robes along with an owl please." He gave Hagrid a piece of parchment with measurements on.
"How did you get these?" Hagrid asked.
"Lavender Brown and Parvati Patil measured everyone in Gryffindor the day after term started. Don't ask why – I don't know. I paid them for Ginny's measurements." Hagrid raised a hairy eyebrow at that, but promised to sort the stuff out as soon as possible. Harry asked for the clothes to be delivered by owl post, while the owl was given to Ginny in person. He also passed Hagrid a note which was to go with the clothing.
Draco Malfoy, the wizard who was bullying Hermione on the train for being Muggle-born, kept up his campaign of terror against the trio. One time he got Harry to agree to participate in a wizard's duel in a classroom. Ginny agreed to be his second and Hermione said she'd be a witness. When Malfoy and his thugs left, Ginny recommended that they not go. "Knowing Malfoy, he'll probably not show up and tip someone off to get us in trouble." They heard later that the caretaker Filch had gone to the classroom, being told there would be first year students in it. He was not happy that his time had been wasted and he was heard to say that when he found out who sent him the note telling him about it, they would face hell.
True to his word, Hagrid got the owl – a nice tawny brown colour one. He gave her to Harry in a cage who then passed it to Ginny. She jumped on him and hugged him. He told her he wanted to buy for his friends. Ginny called her owl Snowy. The next day, a group of owls dropped a package in front of Ginny in the Great Hall. There was a note attached to it. It read:
"My friend Ginny, I know how you and your family feel about money but I felt you should not suffer because you have second hand robes. Here is a complete set of robes for you – I got your measurements from Lavender Brown and Parvati Patil. As I said on the train, Dudley made sure I didn't have any friends. Besides Hagrid, you were my first friend. I've never had anyone to share stuff with or buy for and it made me very happy to be able to buy these for you." There were a few tears in her eyes as she read the note.
During Halloween, a troll was let loose in the castle and cornered Hermione in the girls' toilets after another confrontation with Draco upset her. Harry and Ginny rescued her from the mountain troll, and it sealed their futures together. Ginny wrote to her parents with her new owl and told them everything about Harry, including where the Dursleys lived. They sent back a reply telling her they would make guardianship arrangements with Madam Bones of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement and to keep this a secret from Harry for now so his hopes weren't raised. One day, on the way back to the common room, the stairs moved and they went through a door to find a chamber guarded by a giant three-headed dog. They narrowly escaped death and made it back to the common room. Hagrid let slip the dog's name was Fluffy and he was guarding something for Dumbledore.
Christmas came and Ginny decided to stay at Hogwarts with Harry. He'd decided he would rather stay than face abuse at the Dursleys, and maybe not be able to go back to Hogwarts. Things almost didn't go his way though. A few days before the holidays started, Dumbledore summoned Harry to his office and said that he would have to return to the Dursleys during the Christmas break. Harry told Ginny and Hermione who asked Professor McGonagall about it and she confirmed that there was no such rule so Harry was able to stay at Hogwarts during the holidays. Ginny made sure Harry got his first ever Christmas presents since his parents died. Molly Weasley knitted him a Weasley jumper (which she made every year) along with home made mince pies. Ginny herself knitted him a multi-coloured scarf. It touched him so much that he wore it everywhere.
Bill and Charlie clubbed together and got Harry a personalised set of Quidditch Seeker armour. Hermione bought him a book about Quidditch and his own personalised edition of Hogwarts: A History. He also had a present from an unknown sender. The note claimed it belonged to his father. It was an invisibility cloak. Hagrid had spent a week arranging his present due to a mention from Ginny. He managed to get Harry a photo album filled with pictures of his family. There were even photos of him at school, playing Quidditch. Again, Dumbledore tried to send Harry back to the Dursleys during the Easter holidays but McGonagall and the school governors overruled him. During Easter, Molly and Arthur came and collected Harry and Ginny – they took them to the Ministry of Magic for the guardianship hearing. Upon hearing the first five minutes of Harry's testimony, Madam Bones awarded custody to the Weasleys. She heard from Ginny and Madam Pomfrey and decided to file charges against the Dursleys. These were mysteriously dropped a week later. But the guardianship could not be changed.
As the school year went on, the trio found out that Fluffy was guarding a Philosopher's Stone which could help Voldemort come back to life. They suspected Snape of doing the evil deed and went down the trapdoor. Hermione got them past a Devil's Snare. Harry found a key to open a door while Ginny got them past a giant chess set. Harry made it to a chamber where he found not Snape but Professor Quirrell trying to get the Stone from a magical mirror. Voldemort was possessing the young professor. He got Harry to try and get the stone. He lied about what he saw in the mirror and found himself with the stone. Quirrell tried to kill Harry but the love Lily Potter had for Harry helped him destroy Quirrell and thwart Voldemort's plans.
Ginny and Hermione spent every moment, except for the time Ginny spent as Gryffindor's reserve Seeker (she talked Wood into letting her try because he really was desperate) next to Harry's hospital bed afterwards. He woke up a few days later. Dumbledore provided some answers but not many. Although winning the Quidditch cup put Gryffindor back in the lead, Dumbledore awarded the trio 150 house points during the end of term feast which helped Gryffindor win the House Cup for the first time in years by the largest margin in a century. The exam results showed the trio were top of their year. Professor McGonagall revealed that she gave Harry the invisibility cloak, having confiscated it from his father when he was a student. The Deputy Headmistress simply asked Harry to be less eventful during his time at the school.
Upon their arrival at Kings Cross, Harry left the Weasleys in order to collect some trolleys to carry the trunks on. But there was hell waiting for him. A very angry Vernon Dursley was at the station waiting for him. He grabbed Harry as soon as he saw him – Harry shouted. Arthur and Ginny heard and went after him. Dursley was giving Harry a mouthful.
"SO YOU THINK YOU COULD ESCAPE FROM US? YOUR HEADMASTER TOLD US TO COME AND COLLECT YOU. I DON'T CARE IF A FREAK FAMILY ARE NOW YOUR GUARDIANS! YOU ARE COMING HOME WITH US AND YOU WILL NEVER SEE THEM AGAIN! I HAVE GREAT THINGS PLANNED FOR YOU." Despite displacing the same weight as a Nimitz class aircraft carrier, he dragged Harry to the car, opened the boot and threw him in. Arthur and Ginny got there in time to see Vernon drive the car away.
The first chapter done and completed.
I hope that you enjoyed it, and I'll be posting some more chapters soon.
Just some minor editing between this and zeropolis79's version, as well as some additional text. I hope that all of his former reviewers come and find this as it was second only to my massive epic – "Harry Potter True Friends", (the one with 101 Chapters!)
Reviews and Comments in the normal manner
(my loyal band of reviewers should know what I mean)