Okay, everyone here ya go! 2nd chapter in two days! I'm thinking this last chapter and then an epilogue. I could be swayed for another chapter if it's next week when I get done with my exams.
Anyways, happy reading, everyone! Thanks for the support!
Ginny blinked her eyes opento take in…nothing. There was nothing but fuzzy white and blue shapes in her vision. She closed her eyes again and blinked them open, clearing them a little. She could make out the bed in front of her. She was lying on a bed…somewhere above her a machine was whirring and beeping.
She closed her eyes again and shifted her head on the pillow trying to find a comfortable position for her stiff neck. As she heard a rustling around her, she tried to remember where she was…and why. How had she gotten into the hospital…?
"She moved! I think I saw her eyes open." Ron's voice startled her and she jerked in the bed, squinting in the direction of his voice. She opened her mouth to talk but her parched throat only emitted a dry groan.
"Ronald Weasley, really! Your sister has had a terrible trauma. I'm sure her head is killing her. Keep your voice down!" Her mother gently scolded him. Ginny turned her head and blinked more to clear her vision as her mother sat beside her and took her hand.
Ron muttered an apology, but Ginny barely heard him over the rush in her head. Her head… She swallowed and opened her eyes, blinking the last of the blurriness from her eyes. She gazed at her mother.
"I got shot." She said, her voice stronger, now.
"What?" She heard an echoing voice from her right. "What did she just say?"
There was a commotion as everyone in her room turned their gazes toward the voice and a nurse that Ginny hadn't noticed before rushed forward. Her view was obstructed by her mother, but she only had to wait a second to understand what was going on.
"Mr. Potter, please! We've told you-"
"My fucking ass she got shot! Why the hell does she think she got shot?"
Ginny smiled a little at Harry. Her mother tilted back to look at her, giving Ginny the opportunity to witness the scene before her: the nurse haphazardly trying to block a clearly irate Harry entrance from her room while Hermione tried to pull him back by the shoulders.
"Harry, it's family only right now." Hermione's soothing voice reached Ginny as her mother stood. "Let's go get some coffee."
Molly moved to the opposite end of the room and busied herself with a pitcher of water. Ginny's eyes met Harry's and she watched Hermione's hands sink down as his shoulders visibly relaxed.
"You did not get shot." He told her firmly, his voice rough. He stepped back from the nurse and gently shook Hermione off. "I'm staying here, you can get some coffee if you'd like." He told her, not once taking his eyes off Ginny's prone form.
From across the room, her mother sighed.
"We'll all get some coffee." Molly said, bustling across the room and handing Ginny a paper cup of water. "We'll give you and Harry some time alone." She told her daughter in undertones.
The Weasley men erupted in the room around her, making Ginny smile. Her big brothers were so protective.
"No, when I say all of us, I mean all of us." Molly said, looking pointedly to where Arthur was settling back into his chair. He raised his eyebrows but stood and followed the Weasley boys out of the room, each of them pausing to pat Ginny on the head or whisper and joke or encouraging words.
"We've never let her boyfriends come first before." Arthur muttered to his wife on his way out the door.
"Well this one isn't like the others." Molly whispered back, squeezing her daughter's hand one last time before turning out the door, as well.
"Take care of our girl." She nodded at Harry briskly and kissed his cheek before following her family down the hall like a mother duck herding her ducklings.
Ginny felt her eyes fill at the love she felt from her family. She blinked the tears back and turned her head to where Harry was sitting himself down in the chair her mother had recently vacated. He didn't meet her eyes, rather watching the nurse warily as she tutted at him and reached to ajust Ginny's pillows and check her IV.
"I'm not sure she likes me much." Harry said, turning his gaze, finally, onto Ginny as the woman hurried out the door.
"I wouldn't blame her." Ginny replied. "You're infuriating." She took a sip of water and watched as Harry's shoulders hunched lower and he propped his elbows on the edge of her bed. His gaze was steady and Ginny was a bit unnerved before he finally dropped his head and hissed out a short breath.
"You scared me, Gin." He confessed to the tiles under his feet. "I don't think I've ever…I'm not sure I can even now remember…" Harry sighed and Ginny reached up to run her fingers across his bowed head.
"I'm here. I'm fine." She told him, scooting closer to the edge of the bed. Harry tilted his head up to look at her.
"You're not fine, Ginny." His voice was harsh." You've got three broken ribs and a concussion. There's internal bleeding. You have fucking…you're bleeding internally. You're not fine."
"I feel ok now." She whispered, hating the broken sound to his voice. "You saved me. I'd be worse off if it weren't for you-"
"You're wrong." Harry jerked so he was perched on the edge of his chair and steepled his fingers in front of his face. "I should have worked faster. I could have solved this…I'd…I'd have known who it was and I could have kept you safe. I promised, do you remember? I promised you that I would keep you safe and I wouldn't let them get to you. They did and…I should have stayed more focus-"
"Didn't we just talk about this earlier today?" Ginny forced a laugh into her voice, tugging his hair a bit. "We don't like you focused. You have to take steps back. Harry you did everything right, ok? You did the best you, anyone, actually. You did the best anyone could. I owe you everything."
"Not earlier today, Ginny."
"What?" She frowned.
"You've been out for about thirty-six hours. We talked yesterday morning." He seemed frozen beside her.
"Mmm. Well that would explain why you're all…" Ginny trailed off, fluttering her fingers in his direction. She watched as his face cracked open just a little to reveal a tiny smile.
"All…?" Harry repeated her fingers gesture at her and leaned forward, relaxing by a small increment. "How are you like this right now? You just got…" He trailed off and his face grew tense again.
"It's probably the unbelievably huge amounts of painkillers I've got running through me right now." She replied, flicking the IV tube hanging next to her. "Can't feel a thing!" She tried to smile at him.
He leaned closer and ran a finger softly around her cheek.
"You got hurt, Gin. It was my fault." His voice was barely audible. Ginny reached up to grab his hand to stop him, but he wouldn't be stopped. "I think that this will be my biggest regret. For as long as I live, I'll live with this on my shoulders." He was avoiding her eyes. "I'm…I'm just so sorry, Ginny."
Her stomach twisted and she slapped her hands beside her on the bed, pushing herself up. Harry jerked back in surprise before leaning forward again to try and push her back down.
"Harry, it's my body. I can sit up if I want!" As it was, she really couldn't. Not without his help, but in the end they pulled her pillows one way and pushed her around another so she was in a half-sit position facing him more fully. She was breathing hard and Harry's face looked almost comically worried.
Ginny took a breath.
"Ok. Listen, Mr. Macho." She looked down her nose at him and he blinked at her. "This is not your fault? Did you kidnap me? Did you send me death threats? Was it you who made all these terrible things happen?" Harry was shaking his head and opened his mouth to speak, but she stopped him.
"No. Now you listen. It's listening time. You made this whole thing a thousand times better. If it weren't for you…who knows. Maybe I'd be dead by now."
"LISTENINGHarry, it's listening time. I'm clearly not dead now. And I'm with you. And what happened was terrible and I expect that I'll have to have one form of counseling or another to get over yet, but the one thing that I know for sure is that this whole thing is not your fault! Do you hear me. Nod if you hear me."
"Do you love me?" Her voice lowered and Harry started, looking at her with a shocked expression.
"Of course I-"
"Ok. Excellent. I love you, too. Ok? I can't regret the circumstances that brought us together. Do I wish it had been a little easier? Sure. Do I wish that I didn't have a concussion and…what was it?"
"Three broken ribs and intern-"
"Three broken ribs and some internal bleeding. Yes. These things are unfortunate. You are not unfortunate. Your work is not unfortunate. Ok? I have you and I have my family and my ribs might be broken, but hell, at least I've still got them, too. Ok? Do you understand what I'm saying? I love you. This is not your fault. Ok? Yes?"
Harry blinked at her and huffed out a sigh, finally smiling at her fully for the first time.
"You're tough, do you know that?" He asked. She glared at him and he chuckled softly. "Ok. Yes. I hear you. I…I love you, Ginny. More than anything. I'm just so sorry you got hurt." He leaned down and brushed a kiss across her knuckle as he picked up her hand.
"You could kiss me and make it better." She suggested, raising her eyebrows at him, but wincing when the simple movement tightened her skin and sent a shard of pain through her skull. Harry's fingertips gently lowered to smooth her forehead as he reached across and pressed the button to call for the nurse.
"Maybe I'll kiss you when your meds aren't wearing off." Harry muttered, settling back into his chair.
"Just a little peck, even. I'm not picky. Come here, Potter. Pucker up." She smiled softly and tugged with as much force as she could muster on the hand she was holding. It was barely any force at all. Their hands barely moved and Harry scowled at her.
Ginny smiled weakly at him, but he wasn't buying it. He frowned more deeply when he saw the nurse walk in. She gave him an accusing glare before her eyes flicked to the bed. She gasped.
"Miss Weasley!" She rushed to the bed and began rearranging pillows and lowering Ginny down. "You shouldn't be up right now. Your body needs rest!"
Harry tried to stand and help her, but the nurse all but smacked his hands away, shooting him a dirty look. Ginny laughed, wincing a bit as she did.
"Don't blame my bodyguard. He's just protective of me. It's his job, you know." She raised her eyebrows at the nurse and gasped again in pain. Harry ignored the nurse this time and bent down to look at her. The woman sighed and walked around him to the IV bags.
"Bodyguard or not, Harry Potter or not, he hasn't been anything but trouble to this wing since he got here." The nurse grumbled, fiddling with the tubes while Ginny smirked at Harry.
He shook his head at her. He knew she'd been tough since day one, and since then had learned that she was just absolutely extraordinary, but she was blowing his mind right now.
I need to just marry her and get it over with. He thought. Yeah. Might as well do it soon… Because there was no way in hell he was letting go of her now.
"Mr. Potter?" The nurse snapped at him. "Ms. Weasley needs to rest."
Harry looked from her to Ginny, who looked stricken.
"Please not yet." She begged the nurse. "Just five more minutes."
"Ms. Weasley…" The nurse sighed. "Fine. But five minutes is all you're going to get because you'll be out by then, anyways." She pursed her lips at them both before turning on her heel and walking out the door.
"I don't think she likes either of us." Ginny whispered to Harry, who leaned down obligingly close to her. He shook his head.
"You she likes. You're practically a saint with the kidnapping and everything." He stroked his fingers across her hairline where a nasty purple bruise had formed. Ginny sighed.
"Is it all over the papers?" She asked, settling resignedly back into her mattress.
"All over, babe. You're famous." The corner of his mouth quirked into a smile.
"I've always been famous."
"More famous, now." Harry reached his other hand to entwine their fingers.
Ginny snorted. "We should get that poster out. It'll be worth hundreds soon."
Harry looked at her, appalled, as her eyes blinked slowly open and closed. "You aren't coming anywhere near my poster!" He scolded her. "I love that thing. It's mine."
Her lips lifted into a smile as her eyes closed finally. Harry let his thumb run lazily across the pulse on her wrist. He couldn't believe how close he'd come to losing-
He jumped as she jerked her eyes open suddenly.
"Why does everyone think I'm a slut?" She exclaimed, catching him off guard.
"Wha…What? What does that even-"
"Dean and all those other boyfriends always thought that I was cheating on them. The tabloids…that's practically all they talk about isn't it? No one thinks that I'm a normal, decent, upstanding girl with morals." She looked concerned.
"Well, you're not a normal girl. And I don't think you're slutty." Harry laughed and brushed another kiss across her hand. "It's just gossip, Gin. It's not true."
"Michael thought it was true." She told him, her eyes sliding closed again. Then opened. "Where is he?"
"Dead." Harry's face and voice grew hard. Ginny looked at him until he gave her more. "I walked in and saw him standing over you… I took the shot. You don't need to worry about him anymore."
Ginny's brow furrowed and her eyes wandered to the tiled, speckled ceiling above her.
"Michael Corner is dead." She muttered. "It's bizarre."
"He was standing so close to you, he almost fell on top of you."
Ginny blinked at him. "The blood. The last thing I saw was blood spreading on the g-g-g-ground…" she yawned.
"It was his. Is that why you thought you'd been shot?" He asked, stroking her hair back from her face. She made and humming sound.
"You wouldn't let them shoot me. I knew I j-j-j-just had to give you time to find me-e-e-e…" She yawned again and her voice trailed off as she drifted into sleep.
Harry sighed and stayed where he was, watching over her and gently stroking the bruises on her head.
Ok, it's coming to an end, people! I've got finals, but I'll work on the epilogue and have it out soon! See. I told you I'd get another chapter out today.