Hi everyone. It's been a while since I've posted a story. What with school starting, moving house, Ramadan, Eid and no internet for four weeks, GCSE exams, coursework, homework, not to mention my oh-so-lovely family…well, put it this way, my life hasn't been easy for the last couple of months. A plot bunny popped into my head a long while ago and I couldn't resist writing this one-shot. It's not necessary to read A Different Kind Of Magic before this, although it may help you understand the plot a bit better, I suppose. Please review. It doesn't cost anything!
A special thanks to Amelie - Ginny Guerra - for betaing my story.
"Come on, Aunty Ginny, you've got to see our house!"
"I'm going as fast as I can, Teddy," said Ginny Potter in a tired voice. He was holding her hand and it appeared as if he was running at the speed of light. It was amazing how much energy a five-year-old could have. Really, all she wanted to do today was sleep. But since her dear godson had appeared at the arse crack of dawn (well, really, ten thirty in the morning, which was definitely early for her) waiting at the door with his grandmother, well, she couldn't really say no.
His hair was red today, his eyes brown and his face slightly rounded. He could've passed as Ginny's own child. He hadn't yet got to a stage when he could control it, yet his features seemed to change depending on who he was near to. When he was with both Harry and Ginny he looked every bit their son. It was quite funny at times, actually.
It wasn't his fault that he was so early. Poor kid, he was just excited about moving house. At least someone was. When Harry and Ginny moved into Potter Manor, there were boxes everywhere, neatly labelled (that was all down to Molly, of course) yet still so much chaos. Ginny never wanted to move, ever again. She shuddered at the very thought of it.
"We're nearly there, Aunty Ginny!" Teddy Lupin chirped happily. "See, look, there's that lake Nana was telling me about!"
He started explaining about how important the spot was to Andromeda, and Ginny felt so overwhelmed with fatigue that she tuned out and stopped listening, trying her utmost to fall asleep with her eyes open, deciding to look at the dullest things in sight: her own feet. No luck. She knew that her ankles were swollen, so she was walking awkwardly, and on the most horrible-looking shoes as well. It didn't bother her too much, though, because she couldn't see her feet anyway. Her maxi dress had been magically enlarged to accommodate her huge tummy, on which she kept her free hand on most of the time.
"You know, Ginny, it's not like someone's going to steal the baby from your stomach or something," George had commented, sniggering as she waddled past during a Sunday lunch, her hand placed on her bump.
That had earned him a smack and a Bat Bogey Hex. Thank God Ginny could still perform that spell. Actually, there was only one spell she couldn't do, which was the Summoning Charm. It was pretty inconvenient when nobody was around and she didn't want to get up to get something. Still, Ginny only had a month to go before she could use Accio again. So her mum said, at least.
"It'll go when you've had your baby," her mum had reassured her. "You'll start liking tea and coffee again too."
God only knew how she had managed to survive her entire pregnancy without her daily dose of caffeine. Maybe it was the fact that she wasn't on the Quidditch team anymore. Gwenog had almost had a heart attack when Ginny delighted in informing her that she was pregnant.
And while Ginny did miss being on the pitch, she most certainly didn't miss the constant interviews with the press and making sure that her hair and makeup looked good, just so she wouldn't make the front page of The Daily Prophet for reportedly looking like a bag lady.
And now, she couldn't even be bothered to do her hair properly; instead she had just swept it up into a careless bun.
She had stopped caring about her appearance months ago. It had taken too many mornings of Ginny despairing in front of the mirror and it making rude comments back at her, as well as Harry assuring her that she still looked beautiful, that she would always look beautiful even if she was expecting octuplets. And now, she didn't care. She didn't have the energy to even complain anymore.
"Aunty Ginny! Aunty Ginny!" Teddy's loud voice awoke her from her half-slumber. She looked up and rubbed her eyes, which felt like they could close at any second.
"Sorry, Ted," Ginny replied, smiling ruefully at him. "What is it?"
Meanwhile, in her brand new kitchen, Andromeda Tonks was making tea with great difficulty. It was hard to manoeuvre cups and saucers and sugar and teabags and milk in the midst of the bedlam of boxes and furniture scattered here and there, even with magic. No wonder she didn't allow Teddy to come in to the kitchen. There was far too much clutter for someone as hyper as him. Ginny and Teddy were in the sitting room, or rather, Teddy was bouncing around as he gabbled to Ginny while she yawned on the armchair that Andromeda had managed to discover, miraculously, without breaking anything.
She felt sorry for the poor girl. Andromeda didn't want to disturb her, especially right after all those men had come and deposited everything into the various rooms, but Teddy wouldn't stop pestering her. That was the problem with her grandson: when he wanted something, he would annoy her so much that she gave in just to shut him up.
Andromeda sighed as she placed everything on a tray and carried it to the sitting room. Picking up her wand from the floor in the hallway, she pointed it at a small coffee table in the corner and, with an unpleasant scraping sound, it reached Ginny, who looked up gratefully from Teddy's babbling. Andromeda then levitated the tray to the table. Ginny peered in the cups, then a regretful expression came across her tired face.
"Oh, Andromeda, you made tea…" Ginny looked disappointed, almost guilty.
"What's the matter?" she asked.
"I'm sorry," she told the older woman apologetically. "I've gone off tea."
"Don't be silly, you've got nothing to be sorry for. You'll have coffee, then?"
"I'm off that too." She took a cookie instead from the neatly arranged assortment of biscuits on a saucer.
Before Andromeda could respond, she heard someone knocking on the door. "I'll get that."
She thought it might be one of the workmen. Maybe they forgot something at the house and had come back to get it.
Instead, she got the fright of her life as she opened the door. Andromeda had to stop herself from gasping right there and then. For, standing before her — for the first time in God knows how many years — was Narcissa Malfoy, her sister.
She looked pretty much how she remembered her: the same long white-blonde hair — with a few wisps of grey starting to show in some places — her lips painted the same shade of red, just as she always had done, and her cold blue eyes, which seemed to have retained most of its haughtiness. The only thing that was different (or, rather, had disappeared) was the distasteful expression on her face, as if she had a rather nasty smell under her nose. Now, it was as if the smell had disappeared at long last.
Andromeda realised that her mouth was hanging open in shock at the sight of her sister, so she closed it hastily.
"Hello, Andromeda," said Narcissa softly. "How are you?"
This was it. This was meant to be the moment when the two sisters embraced, all discord forgotten, as if it had never happened, and they would live happily ever after and everyone would get along.
This was also the real world, where things like that don't happen and are considered miracles.
At that moment, Ginny's voice floated from the sitting room down the hall. "Andromeda? Who is it?"
"Give me a minute, please, Ginny," Andromeda called back. For a second, Narcissa wrinkled her nose at she recognised Ginny's name. But then the moment had passed and her face was smoothly impassive again, just as her sister turned back to her. She looked uncertain, doubtful almost. What was Andromeda meant to say to her sister after such a long estrangement?
Narcissa was having other ideas. She already had one foot in the door…
"Erm…well, I don't think you should come in, to be honest," Andromeda began nervously. She gestured at the hallway. "You know, we just moved in, there are boxes everywhere…"
She was lying. Since when did Andromeda give a damn about tidiness when it came to Cissy? She didn't. No, the real reason was because she didn't want Teddy to see her. He had already seen Narcissa in photos and always asked about his great-aunt. And always, he got the same reply.
"I'll tell you when you're older."
The disappointment was evident in Narcissa's pointed face at her reply, so much so that Andromeda momentarily forgot their enmity and jumped in to compromise.
"But I suppose we could take a walk," she conceded. Narcissa's face lit up at that. "Just let me check with Ginny if she can look after Teddy."
"He can come with us," said Narcissa eagerly. "I'd love to meet him."
Not bloody likely, Andromeda thought privately. Out loud, though, she said, "It's best not to. He'll get tired out."
And without waiting for her reply, she went to ask Ginny if she could look after Teddy for a while.
"Seeing as you're here anyway?" she asked hopefully.
"All right, then." Ginny gave in with a sigh. After all, what else was she meant to do with the rest of the day?
"You'll have lunch here, right?"
Ginny managed a weak smile. "Yeah, I guess, since I seem to be stuck here."
Andromeda gave her a rare smile and left.
"Aunty! Aunty, please, I don't know where my broomstick's gone!"
Up until then, Teddy had been sitting happily atop of a heap of toys that he had unearthed from under somewhere (Ginny didn't even notice where he had got them all from), giving Ginny the opportunity to heave herself off the armchair and manage to take the tray to the kitchen again. She had frowned at the wobbliness of the dresser as her swollen stomach had brushed ever so slightly against it and she had set the tray down on the floor, after pointlessly locating the table, which was propped up against the wall. How she was able to get out of the kitchen was beyond her.
She was just about to collapse again on the chair when Teddy cried out at her.
"What is it, Teddy?"
"My broomstick, Aunty Ginny," he said miserably. "I don't know where it's gone. Please, please, please can you help me find it?"
He looked like he was on the verge of tears as it was, so it didn't take much of the five-year-old's persuasion for Ginny to wobble around to the next room and start searching. She couldn't bend down, but she did look where she could.
"No joy, Teddy," she said after a while. She felt exhausted already. She couldn't stand up for much longer. "Why don't you play with one of your other toys?"
"They're all old and boring!" Teddy complained. "Like Nana sometimes is," he added cheekily.
"Don't say that!" Ginny admonished. "Your gran might be getting old, but she's not boring. Don't say that to me, and definitely not to her." However, in her head, Ginny couldn't help but agree with her godson. There were times when Andromeda did act as if she didn't like Ginny, so she couldn't really blame him for saying that.
"I'm sorry, Aunty Ginny," he said, chastised. He sank onto one of the boxes and Ginny marvelled at how he didn't even leave a dent in the cardboard. If it was her, she would've broken the bloody thing by now.
Then, suddenly, he jumped up. "Let's keep looking, then," he said excitedly. He wanted to go to the kitchen. Nana said he wasn't allowed in there, but he didn't think Aunty Ginny knew about it.
Ginny sighed and couldn't be bothered to argue, so instead she just followed him at a snail's pace into the kitchen. When she saw how much stuff was in there, however, she made Teddy wait outside the door which was kept ajar so that he could search with his eyes. And Teddy, thinking that Ginny had known about his kitchen ban, obeyed his godmother for once and stayed there while she went in.
She was looking up, giving the room a cursory glance, when she noticed it. It was on the top of an old dresser. At last! Then she would be in peace and he could just play with the damn thing! Then Andromeda would come back from wherever she had gone and Ginny would decline the lunch offer and Apparate home (her condition was unsuitable for Floo), where she would fall asleep, even if it meant on the sofa.
She put out her hand to reach the broomstick, but she was too short. And since she couldn't use the Summoning Charm, it looked like Ginny needed something to stand on. Quickly grabbing an ancient stool from somewhere, she perched on it precariously and seized the toy broomstick as fast as she could.
Finally! But before she could do little more than grin at Teddy in the doorway, several things happened at once: the stool's legs decided that they couldn't take her weight and collapsed underneath her; she slammed against the dresser, belly and all; and the dresser toppled over with such force that the kitchen door banged shut and Teddy only just moved out of the way in time.
"Aunty Ginny! Aunty Ginny! What happened?"
Ginny could barely hear him; her forehead was throbbing painfully from where it had collided against the zebrano wood and she had landed on the hard floor. Ginny felt on her head and withdrew her hand to see blood.
She felt around for her wand — it must have left her pocket when she fell. She guessed that it was lying under the upturned dresser.
So she couldn't do any spells to move the dresser. She could barely get up as it was. That big fat piece of…furniture was trapping her inside the kitchen. Ginny glanced at the windows doubtfully. No, there was no way she could try and climb out. She was eight months pregnant, for God's sake!
She vaguely registered that someone was trying to open the door, without much success. Then the struggling with the door stopped.
She looked around at all the mess surrounding her just as she felt a wave of pain so bad that she had to bite her lip to stop herself from screaming. Not just from the agony, but also the shocking realisation as she recognised what kind of pain that was. It was one similar to her period pains, something that she hadn't experienced at all for the past eight months.
She was in labour.
What the hell was she going to do?
When Teddy heard the thump, he knew there were problems.
His Nana had always told him to come to her if he was in any trouble. And right now, it looked like there was a lot of trouble.
Teddy tried to open the door. It wouldn't budge. He tried again and nothing happened. OK, so he really needed to go to Nana now. But where was she?
She had just disappeared. She gave him a kiss and left. She didn't say where. Nana had never done that before.
The only place that he could think of was her special place. His Nana had told him all about her special place, and how she used to go there to think when she was angry. Teddy had never been there, but he'd seen it from a distance once. He even got to see a picture of Nana when she was younger.
"But why would you get angry, Nana?" he had asked. He had never seen his Nana get angry at anyone, not even Uncle George when he tried to wind her up.
"Things…happened," she told him hesitantly. "They made me feel sad or angry. I'll explain it to you when you're older, Teddy."
And that seemed to be the story of his life.
Rows between sisters are common. But arguments between sisters who haven't seen each other or spoken to each other for such a long time aren't so normal.
"Why did you even come back?" shouted Andromeda. "What was the point? Do you know what? Just go. Walk out of my life and never come back. I don't know why I agreed to see you again. You don't deserve any more of my time. You're nothing but a snob, Narcissa Black, and you're never going to see my grandson, ever! Because I'm going to protect him from people like you and your husband!"
"Andy, please don't do this…" she said softly. Narcissa hoped that her use of Andromeda's old nickname would make her warm to her a bit more, but with no luck. "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to call him a monster. I didn't. Please. I just want to talk. We could go out. To lunch. Just to talk. Please?"
"No, Narcissa, it's not going to happen! If you're gonna use that terrible word, I don't want to know! Just get out my sight!"
Narcissa didn't want to argue with her anymore. She had tried her best to make peace with her, but if she didn't want to know…well, it was her choice. At least she tried. She turned to leave.
She knew it was a mistake coming here. Not just to this particular spot, but to go to Andromeda in the first place. She didn't blame her for refusing to forgive her. The things that Narcissa had said — not just today, either — and more importantly, the things that she had done…they were unforgivable.
Her head bowed, her blonde hair hiding most of her face in shame, she began walking, not just out of there but out of her sister's life. It was official.
Her thoughts were interrupted with a jolt as she glimpsed a familiar face between the white blonde tresses covering her eyes.
It was Teddy. Teddy Lupin. Her great-nephew.
He looked so much like her niece and the werewolf — no, she corrected herself, Lupin — yet he had such a lost look on his face. What was he doing here? He couldn't be more than five or six. How could that girl have let him out all by himself?
He was heading in her direction, his blond head bobbing up and down as he looked around. Narcissa couldn't stop herself.
She bent down so their heads were at the same level and Teddy jumped in surprise. "What are you doing all by yourself, young man?" she asked quietly.
"Thorfinn Rowle, you are hereby sentenced to lifetime imprisonment in Azkaban for the following charges…"
The judge's voice halted as the huge doors of Courtroom Ten opened. There was an outbreak of muttering as Nadia Isaac, Harry Potter's secretary, hurried in. Everyone, including Harry, was rather perplexed by the unexpected interruption.
"Pardon me, Minister, but I have an extremely important message for Mr. Potter. May he be excused for the remainder of this hearing?"
Kingsley Shacklebolt's forehead creased into a frown for a moment before he nodded. "Very well, Mr. Potter, you may be excused." He turned to Harry, who had got to his feet by this time. He gave a quick nod to the other members of the Wizengamot before following Nadia.
"What is it?" Harry wasn't angry; he was just slightly perturbed by the fact that Nadia had interrupted such a vital hearing.
This had better be good, he thought.
"Mr. Potter, sir, your wife is in St. Mungo's and it appears that she is in labour. I thought you would —"
Before she could complete her sentence, Harry was already halfway towards the lift, his Wizengamot robes swishing.
As soon as he reached the Apparition point, Harry Apparated to St. Mungo's. This time, he didn't even bother queuing up — instead, he went directly to the ward where he knew Ginny would be. He was running by now and was beginning to get a bit sweaty, but he didn't care. All that mattered was getting to Ginny in time, before the baby.
Before the baby's born…I've got to get there before the baby…
Finally, he skidded to a halt outside the maternity ward. How he found it, he had no idea. Now, there was just the simple mission of finding Ginny. Thankfully, it was pretty obvious which room she was in because Harry could see Teddy talking to — was that Narcissa Malfoy? — standing, hand in hand, outside the door. Harry had no time to wonder what was going on, however, as he could hear a scream from inside at that moment.
"Uncle Harry! What's going on?" Teddy exclaimed immediately at the sight of his godfather.
Yet, for once in his life, Harry ignored his godson, instead going in, without knocking, to find Ginny lying on a bed, magically adapted for childbirth. There was blood all over the sheets, which Harry tried to ignore.
"Harry! You…stupid son of a bitch, where the…hell have you been?" It seemed that Ginny could barely say a sentence without gasping for breath as Harry went closer to her. One of the two Healers managed to look up from doing complicated twirls with her wand and mouthed "ignore her" sympathetically.
"It's — your — fault!" she panted. "No — one — fucking — well — asked — you — to — get — me — pregnant!" She swallowed the air with all her might, trying her best to breathe normally. Her tirade at Harry had cost her a lot of pain.
"I didn't hear you complaining at the time, love," said Harry, not able to stop a ghost of a grin from appearing briefly on his face.
That did it. Ginny saw red.
Without warning, she grabbed Harry's wrist as another wave of pain crashed through her, clenching it so tightly that he was sure he heard a crack. But the pain that he felt was nothing compared to the pain that his wife seemed to have passed on to him. Just seeing his wife in so much agony made him flinch.
She — they — were in so much pain that neither noticed a large sort of bubble coming from both of the Healers' wands, the pearly white silhouette of the baby contrasting sharply with the black of the background. The older Healer adjusted her spectacles in a manner uncannily like McGonagall as she observed the x-ray. After a moment, she muttered something to the younger Healer, who nodded before turning to speak to them.
"Mr. Potter, Mrs. Potter, it looks like your baby's struggling to come out. I think he was a bit —" at this point, the Healer looked at her colleague before continuing, "— eager, which means that, at this stage, your best option is for us to perform the Caesarean Charm."
Despite her pain, Ginny couldn't help but pull a face. The older woman was quick to jump in before she could object.
"You have to remember, madam, that your baby is four weeks early. Bear in mind that your labour would be painfully prolonged if you want to do this the natural way," the other Healer added.
Ginny looked at Harry, and for a second, she forgot about the pain as her hand was still clasped in his. It seemed to seep out of her for a moment as they exchanged silent words of agreement, before the pain came crashing down on Ginny again.
"Shit, shit, shit!" Harry glanced at the Healers apologetically, but they were too busy observing the baby to pay attention.
"Go on, then, do it! Do the bloody charm and hurry up!" Ginny inhaled so deeply it was as if the air was water on a hot summer's day.
The Healers exchanged another look, before they both turned to Harry. "Sir, would you like to leave the room?" one of them asked politely.
Harry regarded the two women incredulously. "What? There is no way — even if I have to go to hell and back — that I'm leaving my wife here by herself."
But for once Ginny, even in her state, seemed to agree with the Healers. She was breathing slightly easier now.
"Honestly, Harry, this is — women's stuff. You'll be — really grossed — out." She had heard about these kinds of spells before. She knew what they entailed.
That was how, somehow, Harry found himself outside, with only Teddy for company (Narcissa and Andromeda had gone to watch the charm take place).
He didn't know how the Healers had managed to chivvy him out of the room like that. He had said hotly that he had faced Voldemort, for God's sake, (even after all that time, however, the Healers had shuddered simultaneously at the sound of his name) so why the hell couldn't he see what was going on, and what on earth was Narcissa bloody Malfoy doing here?
"Aunty Ginny's going to be OK, isn't she?" Teddy's voice made Harry jump guiltily. He had completely forgotten about his godson.
"Yeah, she'll…she'll be fine," said Harry vaguely. "Don't worry about her."
"Now then, this shouldn't hurt at all, but you will feel some pulling and tugging, OK?" The young Healer, Jasmine, looked at Ginny kindly as she tilted her bed slightly with her wand.
Ginny didn't know why Jasmine was being so nice to her. She had been so rude to the poor Healer, who was only trying to do her job, really. However, unlike most women, Jasmine just smiled as Ginny swore like a trooper and attempted to hit her. If their roles were reversed, Ginny would've hit back.
And that's why I didn't become a Healer, thought Ginny.
"Are you ready?" asked the older Healer, Henna.
"Yep," said Ginny, taking a deep breath. The baby seemed to be giving her a break for a few minutes at least — up until that moment, that is — as she felt yet another contraction. She had to bite her lip to stop herself from swearing.
"You'll be all right, trust me, Ginevra," said an ever-so-familiar voice from behind her. Ginny immediately tried to get up, only for some invisible charm to yank her back down again.
"Mum!" Even though she couldn't see her, Ginny was relieved to hear a friendlier voice than the ever-disapproving Andromeda and her sister, who had — strangely — been the one who rescued Ginny from the debris in the kitchen. All that time, Andromeda had not spoken one word to Narcissa, remaining silent while the Healers fussed over her. She still was in shock that Narcissa had decided to help Ginny, of all people. The Weasleys had long since been known as the biggest blood traitors in the wizarding world.
"You're having the Caesarean Charm?" said Molly Weasley. While Ginny replied and started to recount what had happened that afternoon, the team of Healers (who had just emerged from the doors) began their work, without Ginny even noticing them.
One of them gave Ginny a hard poke with his wand, muttering, "Anesthesius!"
Immediately she became completely numb in that area. They put some sort of curtain in front of her so she couldn't see the gruesomeness of the operation, but she could still hear her mother's sharp intake of breath as she felt the most peculiar sensation down there. Ginny's hand wandered blindly until she found her mother's, who clutched it tightly just as she heard Healer Henna say, "Incisio!"
"Oh, God," Molly breathed. Similar gasps came from the corners of the room, where Andromeda and Narcissa were standing (Molly had conveniently forgotten to greet Narcissa while giving Andromeda a quick smile). She could see the Healer bring down her wand like a sword, making an incision. Never, with all seven of her children, did she have a Caesarean, not even with the twins. The atmosphere in the room was weird for her; Molly was used to shrieking and one, maybe two Healers assisting with the birth. It was the complete opposite here: the Healers were almost silent and the pain that Ginny was going through seemed to have disappeared. She was thankful that at least her only daughter didn't have to actually see what was going on.
"Would you like to have the covers removed as your baby comes out?"
Ginny nodded once, and with a flick of the Healer's wand, the tent-like structure shrank and disappeared.
She waited a moment before opening her eyes, just as they lifted the baby, which was covered in blood. Thankfully the incision was difficult to see.
She could feel some tugging, just as the Healer told her. There was no pain. Ginny accidentally bit her tongue in an effort not to cry just as her baby started to wail, and, for once in her life, it was like music to her ears.
"Mrs. Potter, you have a baby boy," Healer Henna announced.
At that moment, as the small bundle was handed to her, Ginny couldn't stop herself from crying. She was a mum. A parent. She was responsible for him, from that second onwards.
And, for once, she didn't care about who saw her. They were tears of joy, happiness, and they were shared with her mum, who smiled at the sight of her grandson, wiping away the droplets that had formed in her eyes too.
"I've got a son!" Ginny couldn't help exclaiming out loud, through sobs. It sounded weird already.
This seemed to be Harry's cue to come in — and Molly's and Andromeda's to go out to look after Teddy. Narcissa, at a loss of what to do, dithered on the spot until she decided to follow them; she felt like she was intruding.
"Nana, I'm hungry," Teddy complained. "Can we go to McDonald's?"
"Where?" said Narcissa sourly. She had never heard of such a place.
"It's a children's restaurant," replied Andromeda stiffly.
"Are you coming, Aunt Cissy?" said Teddy, pulling at Narcissa's sleeve. Andromeda looked horror-struck for a second, at the thought of Teddy already knowing who she was. She was all set to refuse flat out when she saw the look on her sister's face.
"Please?" she wordlessly wheedled.
Andromeda looked from her grandson to her sister and back (their expressions were identical). It wouldn't do any harm, would it? And with Teddy, there was no way Narcissa could say anything too narky, right? Besides which, Andromeda had to admit — grudgingly — that Narcissa had redeemed herself right there, before her very eyes. She deserved a chance, at least.
So, with a sigh, Andromeda relented. "Fine."
And with that, the sisters each took one of Teddy's hands and walked off, leaving Molly by herself, watching the scene and feeling extremely bemused.
Meanwhile, back in the operating room, the Healers mysteriously disappeared the moment Harry came in, while Molly Apparated to Potter Manor for some clothes for Ginny — she had to stay in hospital for a while to recover.
She looked up when she heard the door close. "Hey," she said softly. Ginny looked a good deal less agitated now. It was hard to believe that she was the same swearing, screaming woman just an hour ago. He reached her in three swift steps.
"Hi," he murmured, resting his chin on top of her head and taking his first good look at the baby, nestled in her arms as she fed him. His eyes lit up at the sight of him. His hair was identical to his: jet black and already sticking up in tiny tufts. His face was shaped more like Ginny's and he definitely had her nose. To Harry, he was the cutest and tiniest thing he had ever set his eyes on.
And speaking of eyes…
The baby opened his and stared at Harry for a second before continuing to drink his mother's milk. The image would be in Harry's mind forever: of almond-shaped eyes the colour of dark, dark chocolate, darker than Ginny's, with perhaps with slightly less golden flecks than her too, gazing at him, Harry, the baby's father.
"He's got your eyes." Harry's voice came out as a croak, and he realised that there were tears sliding down his face and falling into Ginny's hair. She was crying too; she silently handed him a handkerchief.
"We…made him," he said in a thick voice after blowing his nose. His head bent, Harry gently moved the tuft of hair from the baby's face before placing a tender kiss on his forehead. As he straightened up again, his voice echoed in the birthing room. "He's…ours." They both cried unabashedly, all the while gazing at their son.
"What are we calling him?" she said after they both wiped their tears away.
"Well, I was thinking, you know, James, after my dad, but then I want to call him Remus or Sirius…you know, after one of the Marauders, but that's kind of stupid, so…"
"James was your dad and he deserves to be honoured by us naming our son —" Ginny savoured the phrase "— after him."
"So was Sirius. He was…the closest thing I had to a dad."
Right there, Harry made a promise to himself. A promise that he would be the best dad ever — the one thing that his dad was unable to do, through no fault of his own.
Forget the Boy Who Lived. Harry was the Dad Who Lived.
"Fine. We'll have a compromise. James Sirius. How's that?"
"James Sirius…James Sirius Potter," Harry repeated. "Yeah, it feels…right."
Ginny nodded. "Yeah. And…Harry?"
"I'm glad you got me pregnant."
End Note: Liked it? Hated it? Thought it was OK? Feel like chucking your laptop/computer/BlackBerry/iPhone in my face? Let me know, please! Please review. The only profit I get.