Author's Note: Firstly, thank you to every single person who reviewed, followed/favourited this story, everything. I appreciate every single one of you. Thank you for being patient with me and for keeping with this. One last review of the chapter or fic overall would be wonderful. This is a very, very special fic for me, because I love this pairing more than I can say, and if you're ever inspired to write a George/Harry fic, DO IT PLEASE, there isn't enough out there. The reason this fic is so important to me is because I believe that if you are simply there for someone, you can make the world of difference, and I want you all to remember that because you can save someone's life, by just being there for them to talk to. I haven't got any WIP fics at the moment on , but I have about two or three on my computer that I think may be up soon, for different pairings, so if you're interested watch this space. Also if you have any suggestions for pairings for me to write about, just pop one in a review and I'll consider it. Once again, thank you all so much and I really hope you like the last chapter, it's extra long xxxxxxx
When George woke up the next morning, he stretched his still abused limbs and was a little surprised when his arm met nothing but air beside him. He quickly opened his eyes to look for the familiar small shape that was his partner, but saw no one.
Where was Harry?
When he quickly got up and left the bedroom to see the rest of the flat empty, that was when the panic started to rise.
He flew down the stairs towards the shop; also empty. He ran his fingers through his hair. No he wasn't going to freak out, he was just overreacting. Closing his eyes and taking a deep breath, he hastened from the shop, and disapparated.
"Mum! Ron! Anyone!"
"Yes dear, what's wrong?" Molly appeared from the living room, looking puzzled and slightly anxious at George who had just burst into the Burrow kitchen rather dramatically.
"Is Harry here?"
"No, he's not," she said frowning, "is he missing?"
George once again raked his fingers through his hair.
"I can't find him, no."
"That bloody boy…" she muttered, "RON!"
"Oh bloody hell," George mumbled, covering his face with his hands.
"DOWN HERE NOW PLEASE! BRING HERMIONE AS WELL!"
"I DON'T SEE WHY…"
Brilliant, George thought, they'd get nowhere.
As Ron entered scowling followed closely by Hermione who was rolling her eyes, George cut to the chase.
"Has Harry talked to you?"
"What, today? No,"
"Same here," Hermione added, "why?"
"I can't find him, he's gone off; got some stupid ideas in his head again,"
Ron sighed and closed his eyes.
"George, what happened to you?" Hermione asked quietly, taking in his appearance with a worried frown. George rubbed his forehead.
"Just a run in with some intolerant idiots, don't worry about it," he said swatting his now concerned mother away, "I need to find him and bring him to his senses."
"We'll check the Leaky Cauldron," Hermione said as Ron took her hand and began to lead her outside. George began to rack his brains for where Harry might be, literally shaking his head and massaging his temples. He squeezed his eyes shut, think George, think.
"Georgie, calm down," he felt his mother's gentle touch on his arm and forced himself to relax, his muscles losing their tension and his eyes fluttering open. "Good boy. Now, where would he be?"
And then it came to him.
Without delay, he hugged his Mum tightly, and left his childhood home.
"I know he's here."
Andromeda's surprised expression transformed into a stony exterior, strikingly reminiscent of her sister Narcissa, but George could see the fight going on inside her in her eyes. She pursed her lips.
"He's trusted me to-,"
"You know as well as I do that he's being silly, Andromeda please help me."
For the first time, Andromeda's expression showed how sorry she was, he could see how this was killing her. She knew Harry was being silly too, and he was fairly certain she would love more than anything to step aside and let him in to strangle her grandson's Godfather. Maybe, just maybe, she'd give in…
"I'm sorry, George."
Looking sorrowful, she stepped back into the hallway, and shut the door, leaving George feeling quite empty, but none the less determined.
He wasn't giving up that easily.
Harry held Teddy close, trying to block out the exchange he'd just overheard. He'd managed not to run to the door at the sound of George's voice, he'd managed not to call out to him or Andromeda and tell her he'd changed his mind and to let him in.
But he had managed to control himself.
He heard her shut the door and quickly went back to looking at Teddy. He could sense her enter the room, but pretended not to know, avoiding her gaze.
"You're an absolute idiot, you know that?"
He looked up quickly from his cross-legged position on the floor; she was leaning against the doorframe, arms folded. He'd gotten to know her very well and they'd become close, and he certainly cared about what she thought, but he couldn't help but feel a little angry with her.
"What do you mean?" he said frowning.
"Come on Harry. You are so unbelievably lucky to have found George and to have each other…and for goodness sake, not everything is your fault!" She exclaimed, "The only reason I didn't let George in is because you asked me to and I believe you need to sort this out yourself. Harry, you need to stop blaming-,"
He'd heard enough.
"I'm going upstairs," he stood up and pushed Teddy into Andromeda's arms who looked shocked at his abruptness, but he didn't want to hear it. Without looking back, he headed upstairs to the guest room.
As he shut the door behind him, he fell down on the bed and bunched the thick duvet in his hands. He'd just sleep, sleep and forget it all.
Just as he was dozing off a few minutes later, he heard a rapping at the window. He sat up to see a rather angry looking George hovering outside. His eyes wide with disbelief, he hurried to the window and pushed it open.
"What the hell are you-,"
He was cut off as George on his broomstick flew rather ungracefully through the small window. After navigating the Cleansweep through the small space, he jumped off and threw it aside. He stood across the room breathing heavily, and just stared at Harry.
Eventually, he lifted his hands slightly in confusion and dropped them down again.
"What the hell is wrong with you?"
"Can you leave please?"
"No," George folded his arms. He shrugged, "Not without you I'm not."
"George, I don't want this, for me or for you. I'm just going to make things hard for you-,"
George's arms dropped and his expression turned impatient and exasperated.
"Why are you so stupid!"
"Harry, for Merlin's sake, please listen to me!"
"George, I am doing this because I don't want to see you hurt!"
George just stood and looked at him.
"You're so frustrating, you know that?"
Harry just looked mournfully away from him.
Why couldn't he stop being so bloody difficult?
"Fine," he said eventually, and Harry looked up sharply in shock, "but I'm not giving up." And with that, he grabbed the broom, pushed past Harry and clambered out of the window.
Harry stayed watching him until he sank away into nothing.
What the hell was wrong with him? He was pushing away the person he needed most. But because he was the person he needed most.
It was for the best.
He tried to fight the wetness welling in his eyes, which only grew as he became angrier with himself. He pushed his thumb and forefinger against his eyelids, frustration building.
Stop it, he thought.
When he looked back up again, he thought for a moment that George was coming back, but as the shape in the sky drew closer he realised it wasn't George, but a large tawny owl. He stepped aside and it swooped straight into the room and perched regally on the bed frame.
Hastily, he untied the letter from its leg and with a hoot for good measure, it glided back out of the window.
Harry fumbled with the note before he recognised the Minister for Magic's seal. Once he finally got to the letter, he scanned it.
They'd caught Dolohov.
The funny thing was, he almost didn't care anymore.
He was just so, so tired.
He curled into a ball on his bed, wiped away the last of his tears, and slept like a baby.
"You ready?" Ron gave his older brother what George guessed was supposed to be an encouraging smile. George nodded nevertheless, ignoring the butterflies that seemed to be doing bloody aerobatics in his stomach. Ron nodded back, and stood up at the pedestal to address the huge crowd of reporters, photographers and civilians.
"Uh, excuse me!" he attempted, but the thunderous noise of excited voices continued. "Excuse me!" Ron remained ignored.
Neville rolled his eyes at George, and put his wand to his throat muttering Sonorus.
"OI! LISTEN UP!"
Clearly those who had been present at the final battle were remembering Neville's slaying of Nagini because the silence fell rather quickly at his command.
"Alright," he cleared his throat, "Basically, I arranged this so that I could set some things straight. I know what you all think, well, most of you anyway. You think that I'm using Harry, that I only want him for his fame, money, all that rubbish. Clearly you have no idea who I am or what I'm really like. I wasn't even gay before I fell for Harry, it was just after the war…everything seemed to fall into place and finally make sense to me, and Harry too, and for Merlin's sake people, doesn't the guy deserve some peace? I genuinely don't care about all that stuff with Harry, for me it's just…him. He's always been famous, he's always been rich, and bear in mind I'm not doing too badly at the moment with the business, and those things have never bothered me; to be honest he was always my brother's best friend and one of my really good mates. Why would I suddenly think 'Ooh! Rich! Famous! I'll have him!' when he would probably be even more messed up than me after the war."
The crowd chuckled; and that was when George spotted him, in the small lapse of humour he looked out and there he was.
There he bloody was.
"And those of you who think I'm just plain bad or wrong for him, then fair enough, each to their own, but hear me out. My life is just…right with Harry. I can't explain it really, it's just really strange to think of a time when I didn't feel this way. For those of you who don't know, I lost my twin brother in the war, Fred…and Harry was just there, he helped me through it and still is. We care about each other, we understand each other and in times of great need, we are there for each other, and at the end of the day, that's all that matters. And if you can't handle that," he shrugged, "well then you can sod off."
As laughter and a few cheers and whoops erupted, George only had eyes for Harry who was grinning from ear to ear. He smirked back and his body flooded with a warmth.
He'd got through to the silly git.
He knew Harry wasn't just going to stop blaming himself; he knew people weren't just going to leave them alone and accept them after one lousy speech.
But this was it now. He knew it.
As he continued to watch Harry's smiling face, he just knew it. Whatever life threw at them, he would face it.
And hell, he was going to face it with the man he loved, if it was the last thing he ever did.