May 2nd, 2011
Teddy- 13 James- 6 Albus- 5 Lily- 3
Harry took a deep breath. Another anniversary over. 13 years ago, yet it somehow felt longer. So much had happened in the past 13 years. New births and marriages, jobs and schooling. And yet, it felt like Fred had just gone.
May 2nd was always a bittersweet day in the Wizarding World. Sure it was the anniversary of the fall of Lord Voldemort, but it was also the day so many lives were lost.
Every year the Wizarding World gathered together to have a memorial ceremony. They gathered together at Hogwarts, and mourned. Kingsley would always speak, as would McGonagall. And though Harry didn't want to and tried to get out of it every year, but in the end Harry always spoke. Today was no different.
The whole family had come to the event and Harry spoke as he proudly gazed down at his family. Ginny sat, holding Lily in her lap and beaming up to her husband. James, Albus and Teddy and the rest of the large Weasley family all sat together, the children restless and the adults eyes watering.
But, the day was now over. The long day full of so much activity. The ceremony, paying respects, Victoire's birthday, but finally all was done.
"It's time to put the kids to bed." Harry looked up as Ginny popped her head into his study.
"Okay, I'm coming." Harry smiled at his wife, and she smiled back.
"Are you okay?" Ginny asked as she slipped into the room and walked over to his desk.
"I will be," Harry gave his wife a small, watery smile and he saw her eyes glint with pain he knew she must have been feeling too.
"I know it's hard." She murmured. "It's hard for all of us."
"I know, Gin." Harry opened his arms, inviting his wife to enter into his embrace. She rushed into his arms, and he hugged her tightly.
"Why did we think it'd get easier," She murmured, tears starting to drip from her eyes.
"Its just days like today, "Harry murmured. "We have to remember the good times."
"I know." Ginny sniffled, before drying her eyes. "Look at me, blubbering like a baby."
"It's okay, love." Harry kissed her head. "I miss them, too." And just then a loud crash sounded from down the hall and Harry and Ginny sighed.
"Bed time." Ginny said.
Soon, the children had their teeth brushed, jammies on, and were cuddled up in their parent's bed.
"You guys ready for your bedtime story?" Harry asked.
"Yeah!" The four children exclaimed excitedly. Teddy lay in the middle; with little Lily nestled in his lap, with James and Albus on either side of their godbrother. Harry and Ginny sat on the edges of the bed.
"But Daddy, I have a question." James spoke up, after the children stopped their cheering.
"What is it, Jamie?" Harry asked.
"Why do we always go up to Hogwarts on Vicky's birthday?" James asked. "And how come everybody's so sad?" The room was instantly quiet, and it seemed as if little Albus had been thinking the same thing. No one said anything, each waiting for what Harry would say. And for a moment, Ginny thought that maybe Harry wouldn't be able to speak at all.
"Well, you see, son," Harry adjusted his glasses, and he looked contemplative for a few more moments. "Well once upon a time there was this boy-"
"He was a very brave wizard," Ginny cut in. "He had bright green eyes, and messy back hair and he wore glasses."
"Oh thank you, Gin," Harry smiled at his wife.
"Of course, Harry." She smiled, too. "Do continue."
"Of course," Harry chuckled. "So there was this wizard and when he was just a little boy his parents were killed by this evil man."
"Oh no!" Albus exclaimed. "Not his mummy and daddy!" Harry felt his heart both warmed and broken in that moment, and at glance at Ginny he could tell she felt the same way.
"Yeah, the evil man killed his parents," Harry continued.
"Like you and Teddy?" James asked, and just as Harry was about to answer, Teddy beat him to it.
"Yeah, Jamie, just like us." Teddy answered, and sadness was etched deeply into his eyes, and Harry could tell he knew whom the story was about.
"Well this boy had to live with his aunt, uncle and cousin. They weren't very nice to him," Harry murmured. "They didn't tell him about his mum and dad and they hid a secret from him."
"What secret?" James asked anxiously.
"They didn't tell him that he was a wizard." Harry answered. "They didn't like magic and didn't want him to know about it."
"That's not fair!" James exclaimed.
"It isn't, is it?" Ginny agreed, and Harry couldn't help but feel loved at the anger her eyes so fiercely flashed.
"But it'll be okay," Harry told them. "Because when he turned 11 he got to Hogwarts."
"Yay!" Everyone cheered, and even Teddy couldn't help but cheer.
"And when he was going to Hogwarts he met two very brave people. One, a brilliant witch who had a lot of brains, and one a wizard who was brave and loyal to the end. They became his best friends and over the next 7 years they had many adventures together. This boy had a lot of things he had to do, and when he was still little, this evil man came back."
"No!" Albus exclaimed.
"What did he do?" James asked, fear etched into his features.
"Well the evil man wanted to take over the world, but the brave wizard and his even braver friends had to destroy this evil man. They had a lot of work to do, and lots of sad and bad things happened to them during their quest to destroy this evil man. But, it finally came down to one final battle. All of the wizards, both bad and good, had to fight. It was a battle of good and evil. The good side fought so hard and they killed the evil man, but in the end, lots and lots of lives were lost."
"They were?" James asked, sadness now tracing his face.
"Yeah," Ginny spoke this time, and her voice was chocked.
"Why did the brave wizard have to fight the evil man alone?" James asked.
"He wasn't alone," Harry told him. "He had his friends."
"Why couldn't the Auror's kill him?" James asked, and Harry couldn't hold in his small chuckle.
"It had to be the brave wizard," Harry told him. "I'll explain it to you when you're older."
"Was there a happily ever after?" Albus asked just then, and Harry knew the answer as soon as the words left his son's lips.
"Yeah, Albie," Harry smiled. "There was a lot of sadness, and everyone was sad for a very long time. It was hard because so many people were gone, but things got happier. The brave wizard had a beautiful princess witch that he loved very much, and he got to marry her."
"A princess!" Lily exclaimed happily. "She wear a pink dress?" Her little innocent voice asked, and Harry smiled.
"Yeah, she was very, very pretty." Harry told her. "And they were madly in love."
"Ewe!" James exclaimed.
"No, Jamie," Ginny smiled. "They were happy."
"It's still gross." James then looked thoughtful. "So that's why we go to Hogwarts on Vicky's birthday?"
"Yeah, 13 years ago today, the evil man was killed." Harry explained. "So we go to celebrate and to miss our loved one's who died."
"Who's the brave wizard?" Albus asked.
"I'll tell you when you're older." Harry promised. "But now it's time for bed."
"No!" The three little one's moaned.
"I don't wanna!" James exclaimed, and he gave a little flail of his limbs.
"Yes," Ginny agreed. "It's getting late, and if you want to go to Shell Cottage and play with Dom and Fred then you best be getting to bed."
"Fine," James moaned, and they all climbed out of their parent's bed and walked down the hall.
After some time, Harry and Ginny finally had the kids in bed. Tired after their long day, they decided that they wouldn't stay up too much longer. The couple stood solemnly in their bedroom, just facing the other, and letting their thoughts run wild. As the silence threatened to cave in on them, they heard a small knock on their bedroom door.
"Hello, Uncle Harry, Aunt Ginny?" The voice spoke, and they both turned to their bedroom door.
"Come in, Teddy," Harry called, and soon the form of his godson appeared. Harry quickly noticed the hot pink hue of his hair, which usually meant that he was sad or thinking of his parents.
"I can talk to you, Uncle Harry?" Teddy asked, and he looked down at the floor sheepishly. Harry quickly glanced at Ginny, and knew all he needed to know.
"Of course," Harry turned and kissed Ginny's cheek, and then he followed Teddy out of the master bedroom. "What's up, Teddy?" Harry asked once they had gone down to the living room.
"I don't know, I just guess, I just really miss my mum and dad." Teddy mumbled out.
"What was that, Teddy?" Harry asked. "You need to speak up a little."
"I miss my mum and dad." Teddy said a bit louder and clearer, and Harry felt his heart shatter.
"Oh Teddy," Harry opened his arms, and Teddy rushed into them, and he buried his head in Harry's shoulder. "I know it's hard."
"I hate it so much," Teddy chocked out in between his gradually growing sobs. "I miss them even though I never knew them! I feel it in my chest and it hurts so much, Uncle Harry!"
"I know it does, Teddy," Harry hugged him tightly. "It's really hard."
"Sometimes I'm okay, but then there's days like today! And everyone comes up to me and tells me that my parents were these great people, and that they're sorry! And it makes it worse, not better!" Teddy sobbed. "And everyone's always pitying me at Hogwarts! That or their making fun of my dad!" Harry's heart was aching with sympathy, love and pain for Teddy. He knew what it was like, and he hated that Teddy had to go through it too.
"I'm so sorry, Teddy." Harry whispered. "I did everything I could so that they wouldn't have to die. Your father was like another father to me. Though we did have our disagreements, I looked up to your father, and I miss him too."
"It's so hard!" Teddy sobbed, fat tears leaking from his eyes, and Harry felt his shirt grow damper.
The room was silent, no sound but that of the sobs of the young Teddy Lupin. The cries echoing the deeper pains graved into his heart. He was so young, too young to know what it was like to feel such a heavy burden. And Harry was sorry for that. Never had he ever wanted his godson to go through what he had, and it broke his heart.
"Hey, Teddy," Harry murmured. "How about we go out for a minute?"
"Where?" Teddy asked as he lifted his red, tear stained face from his godfather's shoulder.
"Just out." Harry smiled slightly. "You'll see."
"Okay," Teddy nodded, and he wiped his face with his hands, trying to hide the tear tracks. Harry hugged him once more, before they stood. Harry led him down the last flight of stairs, and they then donned their cloaks. Harry sent his patronus with a message up to Ginny, and they soon apparated away.
Harry apparated them to a small little village. The moon up ahead was the only source of light, illuminating shapes in the darkness.
"Where are we?" Teddy asked.
"Come on, I'll show you." Harry offered Teddy his hand, and though he was a 13-year-old boy, a teenager, he took his godfathers offered hand, and allowed Harry to lead him down the path.
They walked for only a few minutes, before they appeared at a small little church. It was simple, nothing extravagant. On the side sat a little fence, a kissing gate slowly rustling in the gentle spring air.
Harry led his godson to the gate, and gently pushed it open. He led him wordlessly through the small cemetery, guiding him between the headstones of those who had passed on.
"Are we…" Teddy let his voice trail off for it seemed his question had been answered when Harry stopped them at a few headstones in particular.
"It's been a while since I've brought you here," Harry told him. "But I thought that maybe…" Harry gestured lamely to the five headstones nestled closely together.
"I'm glad we're here," Teddy whispered almost inaudibly. "Thank you,"
"Yeah," Harry placed a warm, comforting arm across the boys shoulder, and brought him closer to his side.
In front of them were the graves of five people who meant a great deal not only to Harry, but also to Teddy. Though Teddy didn't remember any of them, and Harry only half of them, they were important people in their lives.
The names Lily Evans Potter, James Potter, Nymphadora Tonks Lupin, Remus Lupin and Sirius Black all stared back at them. Memories both haunting and comforting came laced with the sites of their names. So many years had passed since he'd seen these people, but the pain made it seem as if it were yesterday. The wounds of their loss felt fresh, though they were over 13 years old.
"Sometimes I like to come here and talk to them, as if they were here," Harry murmured, though he wasn't sure if Teddy was listening. "I feel closer to them. Like they're here."
And they were soon silent again. Teddy was thinking, as was Harry, and they were deeply consumed with thoughts and feelings.
"Can I… do you mind if…" Teddy trailed his voice off, and looked up at his godfather. Harry noticed this and he knew what Teddy was suggesting.
"Yeah, of course," Harry nodded, and he gave Teddy's shoulder a squeeze. "I'll be right over there."
"Okay," Teddy nodded and he gave Harry a grateful look. With that, Harry slowly walked away, and Teddy turned back to the tombstones of his parents.
"Hey," Teddy murmured, and he took another moment to gather his thoughts. "Umm… I really miss you guys. Like a lot." Teddy took a deep breath. "Sometimes I'm okay. Like when I'm at Hogwarts, or with the Weasley's or my siblings, but sometimes it's really hard. I wish you guys were here." Teddy felt his eyes start to well up, but he felt no shame. "I love you, Mum and Dad. And somehow I know you love me too." He kneeled down, and let his head drop. "I wanted to tell you that I'm proud of you guys. I've been learning about the Battle, and you guys were so brave. And loyal to Uncle Harry. So, I guess I'm saying not that I'm glad that you're dead, but I'm glad you fought." Teddy tried to wipe at the tears that were coursing down his cheeks, but decided it useless.
"I'm also thankful that you guys named Uncle Harry my godfather. He's really awesome, and he's always helping me, and I tells me he loves me like his own." Teddy paused, trying to regain himself, as the tears continued to poor down his cheeks. "Uncle Harry misses you too, and all my aunts and uncles. They talk about you, tell me about you. Professor McGonagall said you were both bright. And Dad, sometimes people make fun of me because you were a werewolf, but I'm proud. I think that's pretty cool." Teddy turned his head to look over his shoulder. "Uncle Harry, you can come back." Teddy called to his godfather, and Harry turned from the tombstone he had been gazing at and he walked back over to his godson.
"It's good, huh?" Harry asked as he too kneeled down.
"Yeah," Teddy nodded. "I told them that I'm grateful that you're my godfather." Teddy looked up and he could see the love and happiness cross Harry's face.
"Thank you, Teddy. I'm glad to be your godfather."
"Was Sirius as good a godfather as you are?" Teddy asked, and he watched as pain graced Harry's face.
"Yeah," Harry murmured. "Yeah, he was."
"I'm glad our dad's were best friends." Teddy whispered.
"I'm glad they were, too." Harry agreed. "You're dad was an amazing, brave man, Teddy. So was your mum."
"I'm glad." Teddy said. "It makes me proud, you know?"
"I know," Harry nodded his head. "They're proud of you, too."
"I know." Harry nodded. "Your dad told me."
"He told you?" Shock and curiosity were evident in his voice.
"Yeah, 13 years ago." Harry told him.
"I was just a baby, though, and he was still alive." Teddy said and some sort of hope seemed to be crushed.
"No, I'll explain it when you're older." Harry told him.
"You always say that."
"I will, I promise. You wouldn't understand."
"Okay," Teddy took a deep breath.
"Are you ready to go?" Harry asked.
"I think so," Teddy murmured after a pause. "I feel better."
"Good." Harry smiled sadly. "You're supposed to."
"I guess I'll just say goodbye." Teddy murmured, and Harry watched as the words 'I love you, Mum and Dad,' were formed on his lips silently, and he stood up.
"I'll just be a second." Harry told him.
"Okay," Teddy turned away, and walked towards the kissing gate. Harry turned back to the tombstones.
"I love you," Harry murmured, as he began to stand. "I love you, Mum and Dad. Thank you for everything. And Remus and Tonks, thank you for Teddy. He's a really great kid. And Sirius, thank you for everything. I miss you guys so much." Harry wiped the few tears away. "I love you."
A/N- Happy May 2nd. Such a bittersweet day, indeed. I hope all you HP fans had a marvelous day, and kept them in your hearts. RIP Fred, Tonks, Lupin, Colin, Snape and the other wizards who fought gallantly for Harry. May they always be remembered for what they did. We miss you guys.
Thoughts? I hope you enjoyed it!