Disclaimer: I do not own the Harry Potter series.
"It's a girl." The words were foreign to Arthur's lips. "A girl. Are you sure it's a girl?"
"Of course I'm sure. I've changed her nappy twice already." Molly rolled over and jammed a pillow under her head.
Arthur checked the new baby's nappy just to make sure. "Mummy's right, you're a girl! A little Miss Weasley." Another pair of words he thought he would never say. "And I'm not dreaming, right?" he asked Molly.
"No. You're mental. Now please let me sleep."
"Sorry, love. We'll go somewhere else." Cradling Ginevra in his arms, Arthur shut the bedroom door and walked out into the dark hallway.
They had left St. Mungo's late that night, parking the Ford Anglia at the Burrow at nearly midnight. To Molly and Arthur's amazement, the house was silent aside from Bill's gentle snoring on the couch. Neither of them thought that leaving the ten-year-old Bill in charge of his five younger brothers was a smart idea, but they had no other options with the baby coming so quickly. If Molly hadn't been in so much pain, she would have applauded Arthur for getting ready to leave in two minutes flat. But that was the least of her worries. The baby wanted out now. Even after giving birth to six children, none had the urgency to enter the world like her last one did.
"Can't you get a Healer to make a house call?" Bill shouted over his five clamoring brothers. He bit back a swear word as Fred somersaulted over his foot.
Arthur tried not to think about his suffering wife, who was now listlessly pounding the car horn with her fist. "At this point, your mum would be giving birth on the front porch before the Healer got here. Just make sure no one breaks anything pleasethankyoubye!"
Bill's expression turned sour as the Ford Anglia slowly levitated. "Ron don't chew that!" he shouted as the front door slammed. The car sped westward into the hills.
Bill was now lying with his arm flopped over the couch, sleeping harder than Arthur could ever remember. Arthur reminded himself to give Bill two Galleons for his trouble. Molly would throw a fit if he found out he gave him that much, but Arthur felt it was a fair allowance, considering nothing to their knowledge got destroyed. Last time they left the boys unsupervised, Charlie managed to burn his entire wardrobe down. He had to wear the same clothes for a week until Molly could afford a proper outfit for him.
Clothes. They needed the money to buy Ginevra clothes. Could he really afford to give Bill any money? He did deserve it. Ginevra could wear Ron's old dragon onesies for the time being, but they would eventually have to buy dresses and skirts and little bows to tie in her downy auburn hair. Arthur actually giggled at the thought.
"Thanks, now you're making me silly. You're gonna burn up our pocketbooks with those dresses and hair bows, missy. Mum can't exactly knit you a lace pinafore. Maybe you can run around in the nuddy for a while? It's been a hot summer, you know. No, you wouldn't know. You've been inside Mummy this whole time. But it's even hotter in there, right?" Arthur sighed. "Merlin, I need to sit down."
He quietly opened the door to Ron's room and sat on the rocking chair near the window. A crescent moon hung low above the trees, a tiny sliver that resembled a blond eyelash. It was enough light to illuminate Ginevra's tiny face.
"Did I tell you that you have six brothers? That's right, six! You've got Bill, he's the biggest. He'll be starting at Hogwarts in a year, can you believe that? Charlie, he loves to play with toy dragons. And fire. Percy, he just got glasses, so don't make fun of him! I know you won't, though. You're too sweet. Fred and George are twins, but it's okay if you can't get their names right. I get them confused all the time. I think they switch names just to irk me."
Arthur stood up and turned Ginevra towards the crib. "And this is Ronnie. He's your littlest big brother." Ron snoozed in his crib, absently chewing the ear of his stuffed bunny. "As you can see, he's very excited to meet you. I think you two will be best friends."
Arthur sat back in the rocking chair. The moonlight spilled onto his daughter's face again. "You'll meet the rest of your brothers tomorrow."
Ginevra suddenly fussed.
"No, don't be scared! I promise they'll be nice to you. I don't think any of them were expecting a baby sister. They know you're very, very special. You're the first Weasley girl since..." Arthur sighed. "I can't even remember. I'd have to dig up the family albums to find the last Weasley girl. Whoever she is, she's ancient now! Probably long gone.
"I was afraid that I would never give your mum the daughter she always wanted. She loves your brothers, it's true, but she dreamed of having a daughter since she was the twins' age. Yet neither of us thought that number seven—the most magical number in the universe, you know—would have been our little girl. We never thought we'd have tea parties and dollies and whatever else you little girls like. Pink? Unicorns? How to talk to boys?"
Arthur sighed and stared out the window. After a few moments of silence, he said, "Can I tell you a secret, Ginevra?"
She didn't seem to protest, so he raised her to his shoulder. Her placid breathing tickled his neck.
"I'm not sure if I know how to be a daddy to a little girl," he whispered. "But I promise to be the best daddy in the world nonetheless."
Ginevra cooed, possibly in agreement. Arthur smiled.
"I never thought I'd hold a daughter in my arms, but now that she's here, I don't want to hold anyone but her."