I want to say that Professor Mertenson was shocked. I want to say he was curious. Hell, I want to say that his eyes widened a little when I told him I planned to turn Harry Potter. But he didn't. Professor Mertenson leaned back against his desk, crossed his arms, and closed his eyes in thought. The surprise of me making a dead body into a living one was less shocking than whom I was turning into a horcrux.
"Very well," he said, after five minutes, "but this means I'll have to show you how. Once Tom's been ripped from your soul, you won't be able to communicate with him for some time." He looked at me with the same coldly analytical expression he gave the horcrux. "I'll give you a month to think it through. You'll come to me in four weeks' time to give me your answer, and I'll either show you how to make a horcrux, or modify your memory. I will show you how to make a horcrux just before the Winter Break. For now, you may go."
When I left the classroom, my head was abuzz with thoughts. Soon Tom would be out of my head, and he'd have a physical, more fulfilling body. Of course, he'd still look like Harry, but the appearance could easily change; as long as Tom didn't turn into the puppy dog that I've been forced to call "my boyfriend," our relationship would be perfect. Still, this decision wasn't solely mine.
'What do you think of this, Tom?'
His response didn't come in words, but a sharp rush of joy and excitement, as well as a few mental images of the things he'd do once he had a body. My own image of him, jumping up and down like a school girl who'd just been asked out by her upperclassman crush flitted through my mind and I couldn't possibly suppress the massive grin on my face. His joy was contagious.
I'm going to have a body! A real body! Not some shody vessel of flesh like the last one! I'll have a nose! I'll be able to tan! I'LL HAVE HAIR! On and on he went, describing all the things he could do with this body that he couldn't with the last, and it became apparent that there was no way out of this. Not that I wanted one.
In the four weeks that passed until my lesson, the school had changed drastically. In almost no time at all, the windy November gave way to a blizzard that fell with the change to December. The castle donned its usual festive decorations, and on December 12th, when Professor Mertenson was to teach me how to make a horcrux, everybody was anxious to leave for the holidays. At six o'clock I knocked on his office door. "Come in," he beckoned. I pushed the door open, opening without a noise.
"Are you sure of your choice, Ms. Weasley?"
"Sure the moment I stepped out of this office. Now show me how to make the horcrux."
"Very well." Professor Mertenson walked behind his desk. Heaving, he lifted a trunk onto the desktop, letting it fall with a resounding thud.
"There are two steps to creating a horcrux. First, you must tear your soul. There are many who have killed before, and their souls have remained in tact. This is because they've gone through one of the most painful processes in humanity:remorse. After you've killed, you cannot think about it. You cannot feel for it afterward. The death has to be clean and cold. The second part is the ritual. If you haven't separated your soul properly, the ritual will rebound and kill you. Voldemort, who slaughtered countless innocents and felt not a shred of remorse, was adept at being clean and cold, but if you're too weak, you will die. You and Tom."
There was nothing I could say. I looked at Mertenson, the full extent of his words sinking in. Nothing in me revolted at the thought of taking a life, no little voice saying "this is wrong," not a peep from Jiminy Cricket.
"Are you sure you can continue?"
When I nodded, Mertenson opened the trunk, and pulled an unconscious man from its depths. His hair was stringy and blond, his round face scarred and worn by fierce battle. Despite the fresh cuts and blasts in his body, the man was still breathing. "This man is of no consequence. Avada Kedavra." The breathing stopped, and Mertenson then began showing me how to turn one of his books into a horcrux.
At the end of the lesson, my brain was full to bursting. I'd just witnessed the creation of a horcrux, been taught step-by-step how to recreate this process, and watched the physical change the process took in Mertenson("As Tom is a part of your mind, you will not change physically," reassuring me as he patted my shoulder with pale hands). Over all, it was a fairly simple process, but when I considered what this meant I realized why this was so forbidden. This didn't stop me, however.
School was to be let out in three days, and at that time, Harry and I were to go to Romania to visit Charlie. The term ended, and I boarded the Knight Bus to meet Harry at King's Cross. When the great purple bus finally slammed to a halt(the fifth in as many minutes), the sounds of London traffic and holiday travelers filled my ears. I looked around anxiously for Harry.
"Just one more day and I'll have a body," Tom said, standing in front of me. Since Mertenson recognized the ring, I hadn't taken it off. Knowing that Tom could be physical in such little time had made me more willing to wear it in public, as a way to prepare for events to come. I'd grown accustomed to Tom's more substantial presence, but was jolted from this reality by a simple fact: Harry destroyed the horcrux, he'd know I was wearing it. I slipped the ring off of my finger, and hid it deep in the pocket of my jeans. Although Tom seemed surly about this development, he understood.
Finally, after what seemed ages, Harry appeared down the street from the station. Spotting me, he ran at full sprint towards me. When he reached me, winded and slightly sweaty, he pulled me close and I tried my best to not act disgusted. When he released me again, he lapped at my cheeks in his signature "excited-dog" style of kissing.
"Telling you I missed you would be an understatement," he cooed into my ear, pulling me more tightly against him. I gingerly held him back, thankful that the contact had given Tom his usual form.
"I wish you never had to leave me like that again." This double-talk thing was getting more helpful with each day. Harry surveyed me up and down, as though trying to memorize me while looking for any slight changes.
"Right. Well, the good news is that we'll be gone soon. Are you excited? I certainly am." With this, he put his arm around my shoulder, and I around his waist. We turned around and walked out of the station, onto the busy streets of London. We walked for another ten minutes, until we turned down an alley out of site. "Are you ready, dear?" Before I could answer, he turned on the spot and the familiar squeezing sensation took me. Everything turned black for a second and my eardrums popped. Another second and we were standing on terra firma yet again. There was nothing but the sound of waves and the chill air of December on the beach.
"There's supposed to be a village not too far from here. We'll stay in an inn for the night and board a ferry across the channel in the morning." We trudged up the beach.
"Doesn't it remind you of our first date?" Unbidden, the memories came back, the awkward silences, the tedium. I rolled my eyes but answered dutifully, "yes, and how beautifully perfect everything was." Somewhere behind me, Tom's gagging noises filled my ears. I stifled a laugh.
"And I've loved you more and more since." He looked at me, his face filled with adoration. On someone else it could have been heartbreaking, but my pulse was running too fast to accept it. While he was content to relax and spend this vacation being together, I was eager to be rid of him in the most permanent of fashions. Finally, a small ruddy town came into sight. The lights of all the houses were on, obscured by curtains drawn closely to ward off the cold. Several chimneys were spewing smoke, and the some lights flickered with the gentle movements of a warm fire. We walked further down the main street to stop at an inn that looked remarkably like the Three Broomsticks. The high bar, decorated as it was with garlands of holly and mistletoe, gleamed in the flicker of a roaring fire that kept the lower levels warm and toasty. All around the tavern, house elves dressed as Father Christmas ran to serve the multitude of visitors. The drink and Christmas spirit had infected them all, making the tavern warm and lively.
"Hermione told me about this place. One of the few non-muggle inhabited places this far along the coast," Harry whispered into my ear. We walked to the bar, where a portly man greeted Harry and me eagerly. "Your Room key, sir? Room Seven." He slid a large brass key to Harry, who grabbed it and spun it on his finger. He muttered a quick "thank you" and escorted me upstairs. The room upstairs was large and warm, adorned with nothing but a bedside table and a single large bed.
"We've got to be up early for the ferry, so shall we retire for the evening?" Harry draped his arms around me, kissing my neck gently. I could feel his erection pressing against my lower back, and moved forward a little.
"well, as you said, we have to be up early for the ferry." I jumped into bed, changing into my bed clothes with a gentle sweep of my wand. Another sweep and the lights went out. Seconds later, Harry crawled into bed next to me, resting his arm across my stomach.
Within seconds Harry was asleep, his gentle snoring buzzing in my ear. I pointed my wand at his arm. "Wingardium Leviosa." His hand rose gently into the air and I freed myself, putting his hand back down on top of the pillow I'd just been on. As quietly as I could, I crept to my luggage and grabbed two things I'd pocketed before leaving Hogwarts: a vial of the Draught of the Living Dead and a short silver knife. With an eye dropper, I slid two drops into his mouth to ensure that he wouldn't wake up while I went about my plans.
Are you sure you're ready for this? Tom's concern was evident, but I'd been looking forward to this moment for a month. I pointed my wand at Harry's sleeping form. "Mobilicorpus." With a flash of blue-green light, Harry disappeared, magically transported miles away to a place I'd chosen just for this moment. I turned on the spot and Apparated to a place Harry had visited so many times in his nightmares.
The graveyard was covered in half a foot of snow, but it bore the unmistakable signs of Harry's battle with Lord Voldemort upon his resurrection. Several tombstones were blown to smithereens by spells cast long ago, and the gravestone of Tom Riddle Sr. still had bits of rope stuck to the cross on top. Behind a large gravestone topped by a crying angel, Harry laid still and silent. "Incarcerous." Large black ropes shot from my wand, wrapping themselves around Harry's hands and tying him to the gravestone of Tom Riddle Sr. I hid behind an unmarked gravestone, and pointed my wand at Harry. "Rennervate."
Now, Harry began to stir, his eyes flowing open as he looked around the graveyard. "Whermi? Whozzur?" He said, sleepily. I stiffled a laugh, hidden behind a gravestone. Finally, recognition seemed to don on him, as he turned every way and recognized the graveyard for what it was. When the fear grew stronger, I stepped from behind the gravestone, and strode towards him.
"Brings back memories, doesn't it Harry?" My voice was low, gentle. Harry was my prey, trapped and defenseless, and I planned on toying with him until the very end.
"Ginny? What... what's going on? Why are we here? How?" A slew of questions burst from his mouth, and with each syllable his eyes grew larger and more terrified. After what felt like hours, I held up my hand to silence him.
"Harry..." I looked at him comfortingly, "You're going to die here. Because I want you dead more than anything." His jaw went slack and his eyes began to water.
"You're... you've got to be kidding. Why?" He looked into my eyes, searching for some hint of a joke. I involuntarily smiled, a cold and merciless sneer, really. I stepped forward, my wand pointed at his chest. The only things that registered were shock and anger, stunning his tongue into silence. He looked from the ropes that held him tight, to my wand, to my face. He looked into my eyes once more and found his voice.
"How could you do this to me? I thought you loved me!"
I laughed, loud and cold. "Me? Love you?" I spat back, "No, never you. The bit of Tom inside of you, but never you. On that note, you were terribly mistaken."
His body began to shake violently, silent sobs jerking his entire body, while he continued to mutter "why" under his breath.
"Oh poor Harry," I said sarcastically, "The one woman in this world you thought ever loved you has betrayed you. What ever shall you do? Don't worry, you won't have to live with the pain for much longer."
Do it now, Ginny. Get on with it. Tom was getting impatient, but I was having fun.
Harry hung his head, his tears melting little holes into the snow.
"Look at me, Potter." But he didn't. He continued to stare at the ground, intent on not facing me.
"Imperio." Immediately, I felt a tendril of my thoughts leave through my wand into his mind, forcing him to submit to me. "Look at me, Harry." He raised is head, his eyes dull with the effect of the spell. I released him, and he continued to struggle, but this time unable to look away. I took several steps forward. He thrashed against his restraints with renewed vigor. When I was inches away, I kissed him gently on the lips, and he stopped thrashing. I pulled away then. "Good-bye Harry."
I pointed my wand at his heart, but this time he didn't fight. He simply cried, several tears rolling down his face and into the snow. "Avada Kedavra." A flash of green light reflected on the snow, blinding me. My vision returned and he was dead. His body had stopped shuddering, his tears fell no more, and the light behind those green eyes was forever gone.
'Tom?' He didn't answer. I tried again, and still no response. It went perfectly.
I smiled savagely as joy ran through my every vein. I pulled the knife from an inner pocket and released Harry's corpse from the tombstone. It slid to the ground with a soft crunch against the snow. It was time for the ritual.
With a wave of my wand, I melted the snow around us, clearing a good six feet for what was to happen next. When the snow was gone, I put the tip of my wand to the ground and began to draw the circle of ruins around Harry's body that Mertenson had showed me: "In Essence Divided." When the last ruin was finished, the entire circle began to glow a deep, ominous red. The light pulsed gently and I walked into the circle. I put the silver blade of my knife against the palm of my left hand.
"Of my body and self-" I slashed the blade, blood gushing from the wound "-I give this object-" I dipped my wand in the blood and placed a dot on both of Harry's cheeks, his nose, and on top of his scar "-all properties of my soul." I connected all of the dots, creating a triangle on the outside, and three lines leading to the center dot. When the last line was connected everything went dark. My vision flickered, and the circle of light pulsed more powerfully. It felt as though a dragon's claw was forcing itself into my chest. The claw gripped and yanked at something deep inside me. With one more jerk, the claw pulled away and I collapsed.
I came to seconds later when someone smacked my face.
"Ginny, wake up." The voice was frantic, pleading. I opened my eyes a fraction of an inch, and a pair of green eyes floated past my field of vision. My eyes snapped open and I backed away. Harry was on his knees.
"How... HOW? I KILLED YOU!"
He stood up and reached for his wand, hidden behind the gravestone I'd hidden behind before. With a flick I was yanked to my feet. Another flick and I was pulled towards him. "You killed Potter," He said cooly. Despite appearances, the voice that came from his mouth was nothing like Harry's. It was dark, calm, controlled. He wrapped one arm around my waist, pulling me closely and kissing me. It was more skillful than anything Harry was capable of, and more real than anything I'd felt with Tom.
"You brought me back to life." He turned on the spot and we Apparated back to the room. He pushed me on the bed, and crawled on top of me. "And it feels good to be back."
That night, we had sex. Physical sex. And I was relieved to realize this was no dream.
So that's my story. The Harry everyone seems to know is no more Harry than I am. Over the years, Tom has masqueraded around as Harry Potter, but was always Tom to me. Over time, his true nature would come out and people would realize that the Harry Potter they once knew has changed so much in the years they'd known him, blaming it on late changes because of the battle, but this is not the case. For all appearances, Harry still walks among the living. But Harry Potter is no more.