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SIYE Time:1:53 on 17th January 2018


Memoirs of a Red Headed Witch
By My Wicked Quill

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Category: Pre-OotP, Post-OotP, Post-HBP, Post-Hogwarts, Post-DH/AB
Characters:All
Genres: Action/Adventure, Comedy, Humor, Romance, Songfic
Warnings: Mild Language, Mild Sexual Situations, Violence
Rating: PG-13
Reviews: 132
Summary: Ginny Weasley was always overlooked. Always the youngest, always the smallest, and was never really given the chance to let her voice be heard. But sometimes the best insight comes from those who were always in the background. Her story of redemption, loyalty and love, proves that she was never just the Weasley brothers' little sister.
Hitcount: Story Total: 96330; Chapter Total: 4029
Awards: View Trophy Room




Author's Notes:
Hey guys, here is yet another chapter for you to chew on! My, we really are charging through Deathly Hallows aren't we? Well anyway, thank you guys for reading and giving me such wonderful feedback! I really appreciate it. And remember if you really like my story nominate it for the DSTAs! I hope you enjoy this chapter, it's a tear jerker-just warning you!




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"'Cause there is no guarantee that this life is easy
Yeah, when my world is falling apart
When there's no light to break up the dark
That's when I, I, I look at you
When the waves are flooding the shore
And I can't find my way home anymore
That's when I, I, I look at you..."
-When I Look At You, Miley Cyrus

I hated crouching. Of all the uncomfortable situations I’ve been in, crouching behind a statue was it for me. I should have been used to it by that point but no. I wasn’t.

“Do you really think this is going to work?”

“Yes, now shut up,” I whispered, Neville pursed his lips.

“Don’t get snappy.”

“I’m not snappy.”

I am not going to lie, I was nervous; I was terrified. Aside from the fact that the statue could barely conceal the three of us, being so close to the headmaster’s office so late at night raised the stakes.

And quite honestly, our plan wasn’t all that great.

***

“What about a distraction?”

“A what?”

Colin stood from his seat by the fire, “Well, while you three wait by his office the rest of us will do something to draw the snake out of its lair.”

“It’s hardly time to be poetic Creevey, what the bloody hell are you yapping about?” Seamus seemed rather flustered.

“Shh!” I warned, “As much as I love the younger students, they don’t need to be involved.”

Colin called our attention again, “I mean the six and seventh years start some kind of ruckus in say… the Great Hall that requires the attention of Snape and the Carrows. We make it look like a rebellion, a riot and they would never even think it was a distraction.”

I looked around the room, Lavender was snuggled up next to Seamus, Neville was staring out the darkened window, each of us solemn with the wheels in our heads turning. The rest of the house had retired to their respective dormitories and we took it as a blessing.

“But how will they find out about this ruckus?”

“Filtch, of course!” Colin huffed as though it were the simplest answer in the world, “He’ll have to go get Snape because Merlin knows he can’t do a thing by himself.”

***

“He’s coming!”

I bit back my snide remark because I believed people on the other side of the castle could hear Filtch approaching. His grunts and his clamoring limp and the patter of Miss. Norris’ paws as she tailed him were neither quiet nor furtive.

But I didn’t say any of that, though I wanted to, Neville was making me so anxious with his commentary I had sarcasm and spite on the tip of my tongue. I was nervous. And I’ve never been a nice person when I’m nervous.

Filtch was getting close now, just about twenty feet away. We could already hear him muttering profanities with ragged breath as he hustled to the headmaster’s gargoyle. Luna, Neville and I held our breaths as he passed, on any regular day he would have noticed us there, but he was so agitated and distracted I could have jumped out and started dancing and he wouldn’t have stopped at all.

***

“Well, of course we know that, but what is to say that he goes to Snape? Why not just straight to the Carrows, Snape isn’t handling punishment.”

Colin shook his head, “Filtch is a rat; he’ll want to suck up to the boss. So first to Snape.”

I looked around at the others, not everyone seemed convinced, “Okay, then what?”

Colin stared at me as though the answer was completely obvious.

“You three must hide close enough so that you can hear the password; Filtch goes in, comes out with Snape!” I loved Colin, about as much as I loved Neville, but truly it was a pitiful thought.

***

“Can you hear him?”

“Neville, shut up he hasn’t said anything yet!”

I really was about to lose all sense of calmness I had collected, Filtch had just gotten to the entrance and didn’t even have enough breath to utter a word. But if Neville insisted on the urgent commentary I was going to the miss the password and then everything was going to be ruined.

I watched as a breathless Filtch checked around him, he looked behind to his left, then to his right —we quickly backed up into our corner- he didn’t seem to notice anything amiss.

Then I almost cried in relief when I heard his nearly silent, “Emerald of her Eye.” The gargoyle opened and the caretaker stumbled up the steps. The three of us sat stunned, unbelieving.

“It actually worked.”

____
“That is never going to work!”

Suddenly the entire group had something to say, “Are you bonkers?”

“Why would you even think it’s going to be that easy?”

“SHUT IT!” I whisper-shouted. “If I have to say it once again that I don’t want anyone else to wake up I’m going to hex someone, and I mean it this time.”

That won a few eye rolls, some mutters, but it did its job. “Colin, that plan is so faulted it would be a hazard to try.”

“Why cause it’s so easy?” Colin asked, he seemed highly amused for someone who just had everyone calling him ridiculous.

I shrugged, “Well I guess…yes, it is too juvenile, and we all know we are far from amateurs.”

Neville snorted.

“We don’t need some complex conspiracy every single time Ginny. There doesn’t always have to be poly-juice potion, flying cars, hidden passages, time-turners, Weasley Wheezes, break-out, break-ins, and secret agent house elves involved.”

Or invisibility cloaks, and the Marauder Map I guess…but Colin didn’t need to know about that, I had already divulged too much when I told him about the time turner. “Harry, Ron and Hermione would be appalled to hear that Colin.”

“I know,” he smiled sadly, “but it is true, the coins would suffice don’t you think?”

I took another glance at the group; Lavender seemed to accept that a bit more, Seamus was still just unsure. “Okay, then what would be next?”

“Simple. When Snape and Filch are out of sight you three slip out of your places to the gargoyle, give the password and there, you’re inside.”
***

When we collected ourselves, or well, when I realized we were already running out of time we scurried to the newly closed statue. I spared a glance at my two friends. There went nothing.

“Emerald of her Eye.”

And it began to move. Neville released a sigh of relief, and I would have too if I had not been so caught up in the moment.

“You don’t think anyone else was up there do you?” Luna asked.

“You mean, with Snape in his office and that they may be there now?”

“Yes.”

Neville’s face paled, “We wouldn’t know, what if there is?”

I couldn’t answer that, thankfully I didn’t have to.

“Well I guess there is only one way to find out isn’t there?”

And we started up the stairs, “What do you think that password was about, ‘Emerald of her Eye’?” Neville asked.

“I think it is a potion,” I said.

“Isn’t it a type of pie?” asked Luna.

“Pie?”

“Maybe Snape likes pie.”

“Yes….maybe.” But we didn’t have any more time for conversation we were inside Snape’s office, alone, and without permission, we were officially trespassing.


***

“What if he is right Ginny? What if could be that easy?”

“Then we do it and be done with it.”

“Just like that, waltz in get the sword, get out?”

“It’s so crazy it just might work.”

Neville looked back into the fire.

“You said the sword was right above his desk, right?” Colin took another step closer to me.

“Yes, it’s mounted about eight feet from the ground.”

“Not even within a case?”

“No.”

“You aren’t going to suggest that it will be just as easy to get the damn thing because how easy it looks right?” Seamus seemed a bit annoyed.

“I’m not an idiot, Finnigan. Of course there will be something protecting it, the question is what? A curse? A spell? A shield?”

“There’s no certain way to find out other than crossing the bridge when we get there.”

Colin’s eyes jumped out of his head, “But, that’s completely irrational!”

“As if your whole plan isn’t irrational enough Creevey.”

“Finnigan-”

“Enough!”

“Ginny,” Neville turned to me, “do you really want to gamble this? It’s a huge risk just waiting to find out when we get there.”

I looked away, “Maybe Luna has some ideas, but over all we have to be prepared for anything.”

“Okay, we’ll talk to Lovegood, but for right now, once you get in there, grab the sword; get out. It’s not Merlin’s Theory of Magic here.”

We all had come to some kind of deadlock, no one really thought it was a great idea, but no one could think of anything better. “Bugger, where’s Granger when you need her?” Seamus groaned.

Lavender had been oddly silent, for she never was. But finally she seemed to have an important question to ask, “What is the whole point in this again? What does Harry need with the sword of Gryffindor?”

All eyes were on me, as though they had just realized all the same thing, was there really a vital reason for this escapade, or were we risking everything with a flawed plan for nothing? I didn’t know but I didn’t care.

“Dumbledore left it for Harry. Obviously they won’t give it to him; it’s still here inside the school. Whatever Harry is doing right now I am willing to bet anything that he needs that sword. Dumbledore was an old man but he hadn’t lost his mind. I have faith in Harry and Dumbledore. That should be reason enough.”

***


Dumbledore was sleeping in the corner portrait, and as every time I’d been in there since his death, it unnerved me.

“We are going to get into so much trouble it’s not even funny.”

“I guess it is rather funny in a way, I mean we know we are going to get in trouble and yet here we are. I find that funny.”

“Guys! Please.” I had spotted the sword, but I hadn’t taken any steps or taken initiative to get closer.

I was a bit off on my calculations it seemed the sword was a bit higher than I thought.

“Just hurry up and grab it!”

“Neville we already discussed that it wouldn’t be that easy.”

“Tell me why we decided to ‘cross that bridge when we got there’?”

“Well I’m not the master conspirator here; that would be Hermione! I just follow the plan exceedingly well!” I turned back to the wall, the sword shined in the dim light, taunting us. It was right there. And yet it seemed totally unattainable.

“I don’t want to touch it.”

Neville groaned, “Are you kidding, Ginny? We actually made it in here on some whim of luck only to back out now?”

“Who said anything about backing out? And how come all of a sudden you are all for doing this?”

“Adrenaline. Anyway how do you expect to take it if you don’t want to touch it?”

Neville could be so thick at times, “Witch,” I said pointing to myself.

He rolled his eyes, “Just hurry.”

Not that I completely expected it to work, I tired anyway. “Wingardium Leviosa.” A swish and flick and…nothing. I took a breath and tried something else, “Accio sword.” We waited but it didn’t budge. Seemed as though it was magic resistant.

“Now what?”

“They are playing with us,” said Luna, “They know we wouldn’t want to touch it in fear of physical harm; no one would want to get that close no one would have the time to take the risk. So they turn the magic off to, with their mentality that no one would ever want to do anything muggle, since it is so revolting to them.”

I considered what she said for the briefest of moments, and I realized why this was my team. “You are absolutely right.”

I swallowed and took a step, but only one.

“Ok we are running out of time, Ginny get up there and let’s go!” Neville gave me a little shove; I didn’t really blame him.

I cleared my head and finally made it across the room, once I was standing directly beneath it I turned to them, “A little help?”

I heard Luna mutter the charm and suddenly I was being lifted, I was hovering off the ground. It was an odd sensation, I felt unstable but I knew I couldn’t fall.

“You ok?”

“Yea, just concentrate, don’t break the spell.” I rose a few more feet until the sword stared m right in the face.

It truly was beautiful, but I couldn’t help but feel a twist in my gut. The sword brought back many memories. I couldn’t think of them, at least, not then. I didn’t hesitate to wrap my fingers around the blade, figuring if something happened to me at least I was doing my part and was trying for the sake of the war. Plus I had full faith in Luna.

I unhinged it from the hook it was snugly settled on and held it with both hands, the weight slightly swayed me as I was suspended in the air.

I descended as quickly as I had risen, and the moment my feet hit the floor Neville and Luna were at my side, “Are you ok?”

“I think so; I mean I don’t feel any different.”

“Wow, maybe it can be just that easy.”

“Let’s go then!”

Luna wasn’t as optimistic, “I have an odd feeling, like Wakspurts somehow got into my stomach.”

We began to head toward the door, “They are called butterflies, Luna, you’re just nervous, but we have the sword everything is going to be ok.”

I spoke too soon, at that precise moment the DA coin I had in my pocket began to warm up.

***
“Sounds like a good reason if I ever heard one.” Seamus seemed reassured, and pressed on to another issue. “Alright but what if something goes wrong? I’m guessing we’ll just use the coins?”

Colin agreed, “Yes, it seems the quickest and easiest way to communicate. Let’s say our distraction didn’t work, and Filtch didn’t catch us, the coin will warm up, and the numbers will change according to the situation.”

“Sounds reasonable,” I replied. It was quick, it was simple, it worked. “Well, what about changing the serial number to straight one’s means Filtch doesn’t catch you, straight two’s mean Snape didn’t take the bait and didn’t leave his office?”

“Alright, but those are the least dangerous situations,” Neville pointed out, “in those cases we just give up and pack it in, no harm done. Straight three’s should mean that the Carrows caught you before Filtch and didn’t send for Snape at all. Straight fours, Snape does the catching first and we wouldn’t have the chance of getting into the office without hearing the password.”

Seamus gulped, “Those definitely sounds scarier.”

“Yeah, unfortunately they are possible.”

“There is still one more.” Everyone turned to me.

“What could be worse than Snape catching us?”

“Straight fives should be that Snape figures out the so called rebellion was a distraction, and runs back to catch us in his office. Wouldn’t you think that his finding out he was tricked so that we could rob him sound a bit worse?”

“Correction, a lot worse.”

***
I was terrified. But I wouldn’t show it. We each had a coin and we each knew, by that point there was only one possibility left.

Neville blanched and hoarsely whispered, “Five.”

“Go now!” We ran towards the door, and I completely forgot to perform a shrinking charm on the sword, only worried about escaping without getting caught.

“We never should have done this. It was so stupid!”

I was beginning to feel a little more confidant as we made our way downward. Snape for all we knew had just left the Great Hall; we had time to get out of the line of fire. And the adrenaline I felt, I was just as I remembered it, somehow, call me crazy, it felt so welcoming, so familiar that I was pleased to feel it. I knew that deep down they must feel that way too, “Oh Please Neville,” I said as we hit the last step of the Headmaster’s staircase, “you would do this again and again given the chance.”

“Would you really?” That voice didn’t belong to Neville, and it definitely didn’t belong to Luna.

***
“I guess that only question left to answer is what will happen if we do get caught?” Colin sat back down.

Lavender rolled her eyes, “That’s pretty obvious don’t you think? Good-bye Hogwarts, we’d be on the first floo out of here, and that is after our punishment.”

“All the younger ones! Can we really leave them here?” I said, dropping my head into my hands, was I wrong? Could this maybe be too risky?

“Ginny this was your idea in the first place,” Seamus sighed.

I took a breath to steady myself, “Yes. You’re right and we at least have to try. There will still be others here, a few, ok a select few we can trust.”

“You know what I find funny?” Neville spoke at last, “Why do we think this is that last question to ask? Do you realize how many holes this plan has?”

“We don’t have time for anything else the quicker we get this sword to Harry the better.”
***

Have you ever had a moment so terrifying, so completely chilling that you feel that deep pressure in your chest when your heart stops? The pressure that knocks the wind out of you, making you incapable of speech. A moment so quick, so hyperactive that ever moment slows down to a vivid stop? You feel everything; you hear everything, the buzzing of the silence, right before you catch your breath and make it your own again. The chill of realization creeping through your back.

Dread.

My goose bumps tingled.

And in that flash, I picture the worst in some kind of warped fate.

They were going to kill us for this.

And just as quick my adrenaline bubbles back to my surface and restarts my heart.

Boom, one…Boom, two…Boom, three, Boom, Boom, B-Boom, B-B-Boom, “RUN!”

We ran, but it was in vain. I spurted out the first thought that burst through the fog of my mind, and it was a stupid one. The three of us made about three feet leeway before we heard a distinct stupefy and we were thrown off our feet.

“Are you truly that desperate? So desperate that you have lost your insignificant little minds, or are you always that dim-witted? I guess the answer to that has been obvious from the moment you stepped into this school.”

Snape was a storm cloud leering over us. “It’s not your sword,” was all I managed.

He pursed his lips, “No, it’s not but it doesn’t have your name inscribed on it either now does it? if you can read you’d see it belongs to Godric Gryffindor.”

“What is going on here Severus?” a new voice joined the fray.

“Nothing I can’t handle Amycus.”

I looked over to Neville, after everything my friend looked as determined as ever. He was on the verge of saying something when Amycus spoke again.

“Very well. We’ve rounded up the rebels, each of them Gryffindors as suspected.”

Snape had yet to take his eyes of me, “Punishment will be distributed I presume?”

I felt like the worst person to ever grace this place. It was all my fault. All my idea. “Of course, Headmaster.”

Neville struggled to get up but Snape’s stunner still immobilized us. I understood how he felt; if I could I would have stopped them too. Amycus was about to walk away when he noticed the sword, abandoned on the ground a few feet away. Regretfully I dropped it when I was thrown to the ground against my will.

“What’s this?”

“None of your concern Amycus.”

“None of my concern?” the man raised an eyebrow and turned to me. His eyes were so dark they unnerved me. “I believed any sense of crime and punishment went through me.”

Snape took a step in front of me right into the face of the other man, glaring the death eater in the eye. I’d be a liar if I said that Snape couldn’t be scary if he tried, sometimes he was without even trying at all. “I said that this was none of your concern, if I must say it once again-”

“Alright then Severus,” Carrow resigned taking a step back. I was bewildered and looked to Neville for an explanation. His faced probably mirrored mine.

“I expect you at least have something special in mind for these…thieves then?” his smirk glowed in the dark of the corridor.

I couldn’t see Snape’s face but his body was still posed away from me, but in something that resembled a protective stance.

“You may say that.”

“Well then, I’ll see to the others.” With that, Amycus disappeared into the shadows.

Neville tried moving again.

“You won’t be able to until I allow you to,” the man turned back to face us. “Now, get up.”

An invisible force of pressure lifted and I stood, helping Luna who had landed rather harshly.

“That sword-”

“Enough Weasley; if you even think you are going to argue with me them you are surely mistaken.” His voice reached a new level of daunting. “Into my office, now. and Longbottom be useful and assist Lovegood, it seems not only can you not execute a conspiracy but you cannot land without harming yourselves.”

Without another word we followed him into the Headmaster’s office.

“Now,” he growled taking a seat behind his desk. “I can’t for the life of me justify one reason not to expel you.

Before the whole misadventure I had decided that whatever the punishment, I would accept it. Even if it meant leaving Hogwarts behind.

“Neville and Luna had nothing-”

“Oh shut up. I know you all better than you think, you work in groups, each too worthless and unable to stand on your own two feet. You’re to cowardly to act alone, but you Gryffindors would never admit it. So don’t for the sake of any sanity I have left, run at the mouth of innocence. One more interruption and you will be expelled.

We weren’t going to be expelled?

“If you three had any sense of what is good for you, you’d be kissing my feet, but it had become rather obvious you have no clue. Breaking into my office, stealing school property-”

“That sword belongs to Harry.” It took a minute for me to realize I had spoken aloud; Neville gulped.

Snape stared at me, just as shocked as we were that I interrupted again. “Whatever gave you the idea that the sword of Godric Gryffindor belongs to Harry Potter?”

I was torn; if I said anything would they only make it harder for Harry to get it? Would they destroy it just because he needed it? On the other hand, wouldn’t they have known already? I half believed the contents of Dumbledore’s will to be public knowledge

“Mrs. Weasley if you are attempting to try my patience I should warn you I have none left.”

“Dumbledore left the sword to Harry in his will,” Neville confessed while looking at me apologetically, I didn’t think I was mad, he was after all trying to save me from any more trouble.

Snape however failed in his attempt to compose himself, for a quick second it seemed his world had fallen apart. But in another flash his cold glare returned. “And so you were stealing it, and then were sending it to Potter.”

Neville gulped, “Essentially.”

Snape rose from his desk keeping his focus on my, “I do remember you swearing you hadn’t the foggiest idea where he is.”

“I don’t! I-”

“And yet you planned on sending a care package. Where Mrs. Weasley was the address at which it was to be sent?”

I swallowed, “We… hadn’t really gotten that far.”

“Liar.”

In truth I realized Neville was right about just how many faults this plan had. What really was the point in stealing the sword if there was no where to send it? We had no idea where Harry was.

“We’re not lying!”

“The owls,” Luna surprisingly spoke, “we were going to shrink the sword and then tie it to an owl, tell it to find Harry and then hope for the best. Owls are truly great at finding things.”

“Do I really seem that daft? I know that you know the owls are being monitored. You all may be recklessly foolish but you are smarter than that,” He paused, “well I guess since you have been abandoned by Granger, Cleverness is a lacking necessity.” I bit my tongue.

“Where is he?”

“We don’t know!”

Snape closed his eyes and rubbed the bridge between them. “Detention. With Hagrid, tomorrow night. And if it is the last thing I do I will get the truth out of you three. You may not know where Potter is, but you know something.” He stared at me, “I can see it in your eyes. Get out of my office. Now.”

I was almost going to question him about his so called “sanity.” Detention with Hagrid? He must have been joking. Thankfully Neville grabbed my arm and yanked me away before I could say anything.

I stopped at the stairs and looked back at the man I hated so much. He looked so troubled, so lost, and at that moment seemed more human than ever before. He didn’t know I was watching him when he turned to the portrait of Dumbledore.

“Why didn’t you tell me?” he asked, “Why have you done this?”
***

“Yeh alrigh’ Ginny?”

“Huh?” I looked up, “um...yeah, just fine.”

“Yeh don’ look just fine.”

I smiled, “I’m okay Hagrid, I’m here, I’m breathing, I’m in one piece; I’m fine.”

The half giant sighed, “It’s a rotten excuse, but it err, is the bes’ we can ask fer at the momen’.”

We were walking through the forest, supposedly searching for stray thestrals, but we really were just wandering. “It’s more dangerous in these parts than ever yer know.”

“Not surprised.”

“O’ course it never really is safe.”

“Never.”

“Yup, the centaurs ha’ finally-”

“Hagrid?”

“Yes?”

“Why do you think Snape gave us detention with you? Not to be offensive or anything, but it’s anything but daunting punishment.”

Hagrid offered a ghost of a smile, “None offense taken I’ll see tha’ as more a compliment. Ter answer yer question, I dunno. Snape, I er… never tried ter understan’.”

I kicked a rock and watched it roll over to Neville and Luna who were huddled a few feet ahead. “Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad he did, I really don’t fancy getting my face beaten in by the Carrows.” The other Gryffindors however -that were caught- there was nothing I could do about them.

That’s when I heard a soft sobbing beside me, “Hagrid?”

“I’m sorry, I really am, I just-” Hagrid’s tears took over and he dropped to the ground.

“Hagrid!”

“I’m alrigh’, I am it’s just,”

“Neville, Luna come over here!” I didn’t know what to do; something was telling me we should have kept moving.

“What’s going on?” Neville asked above Hagrid’s wails.

“I don’t know-”

All these students! This whole school! They…it shoulda closed.”

“Oh Hagrid you don’t mean that!”

“Yeh I do! Dumbledore’s gone, Snape’s in charge, Death Eaters…hitting students!” he pulled out a blanket, or what would be a handkerchief for him, and dabbed his eyes. “Blimey! It wa’ grea’ old luck yeh were sent here,” the trumpet of his nose blew into the cloth, “I dunno wha’ I woulda done.”

Neville sighed and settled beside Hagrid. “I don’t know how long we’ll be able to avoid it. Even if we keep a low profile now we might have caused more trouble already than we can cope with.”

I turned away, “Are we going about this the wrong way? Should we dismember the D.A.?”

“No,” Hagrid said; his voice watery from tears. “It’s sometin’ good yeh can hold onto. It’s a good thing, I just wish there were a way ter avoid any more trouble.”

We knew that was impossible.

“So then we were right telling Snape about the sword and the will?”

“Yer all did wha’ yeh had ter do. Yeh go’ out o’ the situation unharmed,” He sniffed, “Wha’ever yeh did wa’ the righ’ thing ter do.”

Neville nodded and I could tell her no longer wanted to speak about it.

“I do believe it was the right thing to do, no one should feel bad,” Luna looked up to Neville who was almost a foot taller, “No one said it was a secret.”

“There yer go,” Hagrid said clearing his throat and standing. “Sorry ‘bout tha’ erm…lost my nerve.”

Smiling softly Neville said, “Yea, your secret is safe with us.” The pair began to walk away together, quite close I might add. Watching them I wished we could all just lead regular teenage lives, some romance would help everyone.

“Ginny? Now I know we don’ usually see much o’ each other but I can tell sumtin else is botherin’ you.”

He was right of course, our entire sentence in the Forbidden Forrest, the darkness and quiet rendered locked me into my own head, and that wasn’t the right place to be at the time, not if I planned on staying sane.

“Hagrid, do you know what a Horcrux is?”

“A what?”

I don’t remember if I had meant to ask him or if it had just come out either way what was said, was said. “A horcrux,” I repeated looking down to my feet.

He thought for a moment, “Sorry, Ginny, I’ve never heard o’ it.”

“It’s ok.” I hadn’t been expecting an answer. I hadn’t gotten one in years. That fact, was how I came to discover what the prophecy was.

Because of what I could pull together, and because no one was willing to tell me anything I had to come up with the answer myself- and I did -successfully. I’ve never been stupid. The Prophecy had to do with Harry and Voldemort; it had their names on it! Harry let something slip just before he left when I told him my mum was trying to keep them from leaving, “Who else does she think is going to kill him?” Meaning Harry thought he was the only one who could. Harry wasn’t usually a vain person, so the only reason he would think that way was because someone told him he was the only one who could. And with the rumors of Harry being the “Chosen One,” it wasn’t a far leap to guess that the prophecy stated Harry would have to kill Voldemort. And due to the obvious fact that Voldemort was adamant in his attempts to kill Harry it seemed this theory was plausible, and that one of them would eventually destroy the other.

Terrible thought, I know but I couldn’t change it. The only questions left were,
What was a Horcrux?

Why did Dumbledore leave the Sword to Harry?

How did Harry plan to destroy Voldemort?

What were he, Ron and Hermione doing?

Where?

Why was Snape acting so oddly?

And of course the winner; what did Harry feel for me?

Did he still care for me?

Would he come back to me?


It would have been a miracle if any of those were answered to me.

“Well com’on then,” Hagrid said to me then turned to Neville and Luna, “hey the both o’ yah, yer don’ wanna stray too far!” he moved on ahead, leaving me alone in the cool November chill. Maybe looking for thestrals was torturous punishment after all; Snape knew I could see them now.


****

“Quiet your blubbering Weasley we all knew what we were getting into, and if I remember correctly we all volunteered, and this was my idea,” Colin said as he sat up from his hospital bed.

I rubbed my eyes. I truly was exhausted and didn’t feel like fighting. “Colin, it was really my idea to steal the sword, but it wouldn’t have worked with any plan, but I agreed, I led it and let it happen anyway, I wouldn’t be surprised if you hated me right now.”

“Wow. I wish I had my camera with me, Ginny Weasley solemn and remorseful!”

“Oh shut it, you make me sound like a harsh prat.”

“You’re not, you’re just strong, and you rarely regret the things you do, you’re just so sure of yourself.”

“If you only knew, I regret so many things Colin, I…I’m not nearly as strong as you all think I am. I’m no Harry.”

Colin smiled and laid a soft hand on my shoulder. “You may not be Harry, but you’re evenly matched, he loves you and he wouldn’t choose just any girl Ginny, he needs your natural strength. Don’t sell yourself short.”

I swallowed hard, “Colin, Harry and I are over; he’s gone. We aren’t together.”

He looked me straight in the eye, his blue eyes so pure; his mouth hiding a smile, “I know.”

Was I really doing that bad of a job trying to convince people that we don’t care for each other? Granted I knew it would be hard for me to hide my feelings, but I thought It would be a synch to say that Harry didn’t feel the same way, apparently everyone seemed to know Harry’s true feelings even if I didn’t know them myself.

Madam Pomfrey walked back into the room not looking very happy, but it was ofter hard to tell with her. “Here you go Mr. Creevey, your last pain potion, it seems I have done all I can for you. You are free to go.”

Colin drank his last dosage of the medicine with a slight wince, “Thank you ma’am.” Hopping off the bed Colin instantly clutched his ribs regretting what he’d just done, “Its fine, I’m fine.”

“Not by the look of it Mr. Creevey,” she sighed. “Now listen here. I do not want to hear of anymore misadventures that end with injury. You children just need to learn to lay low and follow the rules.”

“It’s not our fault Madam! We can’t help it, we aren’t the ones inflicting the injury.”

Madam Pomfrey took my hand in both of hers, this worried me, she wasn’t a mean woman, a bit strict at times and not all that warm but this desperate act was out of character for her. “Miss. Weasley, you don’t understand. I have been forbidden to treat anymore students.”


****

“She’s what?”

“Are they mad!?”

“What if-”

“My ribs still need attention!”

“How could they-”

“That’s illegal-”

“We need-”

“I won’t stand for this!”

“And what do you expect us to do?”

“We have to fight-”

“ENOUGH!”

My yell silenced the room and I couldn’t have been more grateful, my headache was causing me to be more irritable than usual.

I needed to think and the D.A.’s outbursts were making it impossible. I shouldn’t have called the meeting so soon. I needed to channel Harry, what would he have done?

“Listen, obviously our attempt failed, and we can’t strike again, at least for a while. Right now we just need to grow stronger, we need to train, now we know what we are really up against, and we can’t get caught.”

With that I sent them to work on their shields and I sat by the window to settle my mind. I knew I could just stop, accept our fate here at school and take our last chance to hide in the shadows for the rest of the year.

But I couldn’t. I knew I couldn’t, not without a fight, not without making a statement. I couldn’t give up. Colin assured me that everyone was still on my side, no one blamed me for what happened. So if everyone was still so willing to stand by me then why give up so easily?

Snape wasn’t making sense either. All my previous years, Snape had almost expelled students for being late to his class, and after what we did he only gave us detention? With Hagrid? I had a strange feeling of protection, as though he intended to save us from a harsher fate with the Carrows, I could see that coming from McGonagall, of anyone else on staff, but this was Snape.

Snape killed Dumbledore. Why would he bother with me?

Harry still hadn’t been spotted, and a third of the students currently practicing were all black and blue. It really was turning into a safe house, the Room of Requirement.

The Room of Requirement…safe house. A thought, crazy or not hit me just then, we could turn the place into some kind of hospital we could be a bit more safe.

“Neville!”

He stopped mid-spell and turned.

“I have an idea.”

“What?” he looked hopeful.

“We can make the Room of Requirement into anything we want right?”

Others around began to clue into our conversation, “Yes…why?”

“Well think about it, if we can turn this place into a clinic, we wouldn’t have to worry about getting hurt.”

Some nodded, others seemed skeptical, “Ginny I don’t think the room gives us people.:

“What does that have to do with anything?”

“We would need a healer.”

I hadn’t thought of that.

“I know about healing,” Luna offered.

“Mum can heal almost anything,” I said, “and I’ve seen her do it.”

“My dad’s a healer!” someone called.

“I have some books!”

I smiled, “That settles it, if we can’t get a healer, worst case, we will have to learn to care for ourselves.” I gave Neville a nod and together we closed our eyes. I had to believe that others followed because when we opened our eyes the room was three times the size it had been. There were dozens of cots and aligning the walls were medicine cabinets and bookshelves with what I guessed were packed with books on healing, cures and potions, everything we could need. Students were gasping in amazement.

“Some of the things hear are even rare at Saint Mungo’s!” some Hufflepuff called. The room was beautiful, even better than the hospital wing.

“Ginny,” Neville said pulling me aside, “this idea, it’s imaginative, really, it’s great but it isn’t the solution, we don’t want people getting hurt period. And if they do then…do you honestly think we are going to be able to fix things ourselves? And what if the Carrows take notice, I mean of course they are, when they beat someone and the next day they are fresh and dandy again!”

“Neville you need to calm down. You and I both know we can’t stop anyone from getting hurt, it’s just not going to happen, and as for the Carrows, they can go to hell, we need medical attention and if they are taking it from us then we are going to provide ourselves with what we can. It’s not the best solution, it’s not even ideal, but it’s the best we can do.”

Neville stared at me for a moment before pulling me further away from the others, he lowered his voice, “What are you thinking Ginny? I know your grand epiphany was not just about a bloody clinic. You only said that to help people feel safe, so whatever you are really thinking wouldn’t frighten them as much, you better tell me what you’re up to right now.”

I pulled my arm away from his grasp, completely frustrated. “You make me sound like some kind of deceiving dictator forcing everyone to do this! I’ll have you know that Colin and several others insist that they all volunteer. Do you honestly think I would do this so that you all would just do whatever I say? What do you take me for? I give them as much a chance as any to back down but no one does. I’d be a fool not to take that advantage and try to take a stand.”

Neville’s eyes grew darker, and suddenly his face changed to a more aggressive form, I’d never seen him like that, I didn’t even think sweet Neville could seem so intimidating. He looked like Harry, “What are you thinking Ginny?” his voice dangerous.

I stood up a little straighter, and gave him the truth. “A rebellion. Not an amateur fight, a rebellion where the school takes everything back. Where we overthrow Snape and the Carrows and the rest of the bloody Death Eaters lurking around this place. Where we take back our lives. A REAL war within the walls.

I started to grow anxious after a while when Neville said nothing. The thought had been dancing around in my head for months, and now, after Colin’s reassurance, I felt it was possible.

“I know.”

“What?”

“I knew this was going to happen, I just really hoped it wouldn’t.”

“Oh, so now you are suddenly all ok with this? Two seconds ago you were about to rip my head off for putting these people at risk!”

“I just wanted you to tell me what you were really thinking, no matter how crazy I really think it is, I wasn’t insinuating anything, well at least I didn’t mean to.” Neville sighed a took a step toward the window, “How are we going to protect these people Ginny? I can’t have anyone die, not on an idea that was mine.”

“Ours okay? You won’t be blamed for anything.”

“But it will still be on my conscious. We need to keep them safe.”

I grimaced and took his hand, “For now, we can’t really promise anything. For now, we train, we go to class —on time- we train, we eat, we train and then when the time comes the rebellion will break out. When the times comes, this place this room will be more than just an impromptu clinic. It’s going to be our home, the only place where they can’t get to us. I have a feeling we are going to have to live in here. It’s the only way to survive this.”

There was a long silence between us. Others were chatting and exploring the new room, oblivious to our conversation, oblivious to what I had in mind. I wondered if they would come to resent me for it.

Neville looked down at our intertwined hands and squeezed. Then there was a moment, a quick fleeting moment where I didn’t feel so alone. For one moment I could picture a life without the waiting and longing for Harry. A life where maybe I could be…with Neville. This boy holding my hand, the guy who took me to the Yule Ball and stepped all over my feet and stuttered apologies, the man who stood up for me in front on Umbridge’s office two years ago, the one who watched my back in the battle last year. The guy who had become one of the most important people to me, the only person I could really talk to in those late night meetings in the common room. My partner.

He had grown into such an incredible person, so brave and compassionate, if a little unsure sometimes, he always wanted to do good. He had become so great, and even handsome.

I could see it. in his eyes, and I was almost positive I could see the same thing reflected back. It was unnerving but a relief.

Neville.

Neville Longbottom.

“You’re right. I hate it. I don’t want to do this, but I guess, what has to be done, has to be done.”

And like a broken picture, suddenly his attention was caught behind me, and his entire face light up, “Luna!” he said, “Isn’t this wonderful!”

I dropped his hand as though it had just burned me and took a step back, had I just lost my mind? What the devil had I been thinking? How could I have thought-

“It’s lovely,” she replied.

“Well, wait until you hear what Ginny has just come up with.”

I could hardly hear him anymore, I felt so guilty, so selfish and suddenly more alone than ever. When he took a step to stand beside Luna I had to get out of there.

“Ginny?” Some surreal sense came about me. A dream like state was the only explanation for how it was feeling, what I was thinking. A heart breaking realization that I had in fact been daydreaming about Neville Longbottom.

I ran out of the room, down the corridors and through the secret passageways I knew of, not caring if anyone saw me. What else did I have to lose other than my dignity? I didn’t even care. They could have it.

I didn’t even care when the tears broke through. I made it up to the dormitory and was thankful to find that I was alone.

Alone. I was alone and that was what sacred me the most. I was lonely and I missed Harry.

He was gone and was stuck there in that hell hole all by myself with no other option than to fantasize about my best friend. I didn’t even know why I felt guilty. I had every right to think about another boy, Harry and I were officially over, and it didn’t seem like that was going to change, not soon if not never. I didn’t have to feel guilty and I wasn’t being selfish, and yet that’s what I felt. I felt like a terrible person.

I hated myself because I knew that no matter what I did I would never find someone who could take Harry’s place, I knew deep down that Neville and I wouldn’t work. I knew no other guy would ever work.

I kicked the side of my bed in frustration. What was wrong with me? Why couldn’t I handle another break up? I was only sixteen years old for good sakes! That was the reasonable side of me talking.

Why did I suddenly feel worthless without someone to put their arms around me and tell me everything was going to be alright? I couldn’t have Neville do that, and Harry was Merlin knows where. Why was I suddenly aching so much for someone when I was always so content with myself for being such an independent person? What changed?

I was scared, that’s what.

And I had Harry once. I had known what it felt like to have his arms around me and tell me everything was going to be alright. I had him and I lost him. Now i knew what I was missing.

I needed Harry, I missed him. I missed him so much I was going to go crazy.

I missed his witty one-line comebacks.

His terrible jokes.

His messy hair that would never lie flat.

I missed his stubborn streak.

I missed how at the last second he would let me win the fight.

The exciting recognition in his eyes when he’s figured something out.

His curiosity and wonder about magic, even after six years if living in it.

His smile, his rare genuine smile.

I missed my Harry from the lake.

And so I crumbled and kneeled to the ground by my trunk. I began to dig, quickly tossing things out of my way until I found it. There at the bottom was a Gryffindor jersey with the name POTTER and the number 7 written on the back. I stole it from him ages before and I wasn’t ashamed. I took it and held it close.

Call my dramatic call me weak, but it helped. It smelled like him and it calmed me down, the way his presence always calmed me down.

November was now over; it had been four months without any word. I began to doubt I would ever even see Harry again, but despite my better judgment, that Christmas I wished that I would. Just when I thought I hit rock bottom, I hadn’t even neared the ground. That night as I fell asleep with his shirt, I felt someone was watching me, oddly enough it was a pleasant feeling. Like someone was watching over me, protecting me. I pretended it was Harry and fell to a dreamless, relaxing sleep.


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