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SIYE Time:17:52 on 17th November 2017


Still An Us
By HPmum2014

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Category: Post-DH/AB
Characters:Harry/Ginny
Genres: Angst, General, Romance
Warnings: Mild Sexual Situations, Spouse/Adult/Child Abuse
Story is Complete
Rating: PG-13
Reviews: 8
Summary: It's weeks after the final battle and things still aren't sorted between Harry and Ginny. What would bring them back together?
Hitcount: Story Total: 2332



Disclaimer: Harry Potter Publishing Rights J.K.R. Note the opinions in this story are my own and in no way represent the owners of this site. This story subject to copyright law under transformative use. No compensation is made for this work.



Author's Notes:
So many versions of how Harry and Ginny got back together after the war, So I thought, why not?




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Harry watched in concern as Kingsley Shacklebolt left the Burrow to go and find Ginny down at the family Quidditch pitch. He had a suspicion he knew what it was he wanted to talk to her about and it wasn't to wish her a happy birthday for the day before.

“Oh Arthur, do you really think he'll ask Ginny to testify?” asked Molly, worriedly. “She was under-age when it all happened, and she already gave a statement.”

“The trials aren't going well. So many are saying they were under the Imperius curse, and they need every shred of evidence to prosecute them. Unfortunately, with Snape's death, the best one's to prove it are the students they tortured.” His expression turned grim as he imagined his daughter, his youngest child, going through that.

Molly was nearly in tears. “I know that a lot of Ron and Harry's dorm mates have given evidence; Neville, Seamus, and many others. Why isn't that enough? Why should Ginny and Luna have to re-live that terrible time again?”

Arthur took Molly in his arms, almost forgetting Ron, Hermione and Harry were listening at the table. “Love, you know our daughter. You know she was in the thick of it.”

“A target, you mean. Like after they ruined Fleur and Bill's wedding, and they took her away from us, to try and find out where the others were. Arthur, this can't be good for her. Surely we can forbid her from testifying,” said Molly.

Ron, Hermione and Harry exchanged worried looks. They hadn't thought to ask what had happened after they'd fled the wedding. When Arthur's Patronus had let them know they were all well, none of them had given it a second thought.

Arthur sighed. “Molly, Ginny's of age now. It's probably why Kingsley waited. I don't like it either, but there is nothing we can do. If Ginny chooses to do this, all we can do us support her and be here for her,” he said.

They all jumped as the door slammed shut. “Sorry,” said Ginny, making her way straight up to her room. They all watched her go.

“Where is Kingsley?” called Molly.

Ginny leaned over the stair railings. “He Apparated back to the Ministry,” she replied. For a moment, her eyes met Harry's and time was frozen. Then she blinked, and continued up the stairs. The moment was gone, and could never be gotten back. A minute later they heard her bedroom door shut firmly.

“Mum, Dad, do you actually know what happened to Ginny at Hogwarts?” asked Ron, with trepidation.

Molly shook her head. “We should never have let her go back to Hogwarts after Christmas. What with Luna being taken, and Ginny, well, she never told us anything, but bruises speak for themselves, don't they?” she asked, bitterly.

“Why did you let her go back?” asked Hermione, politely.

Molly scoffed. “Like we could stop her! With Luna gone, she said she needed to be there for Neville, for Dumbledore's Army,” she said.

Harry stiffened at the mention of Neville. Since the battle, things had been awkward between him and Ginny, and they hadn't really talked much. She had been helping George cope without his twin, and helping Fleur with the cooking and housework when Molly was too overcome with grief. Any time she was free, she was either with Neville or Luna.

The sound of footsteps running down the stairs drew all their attention. Ginny came down, slinging a bag over her chest. Seeing everyone's attention on her, she hurriedly kissed her mum's cheek. “I'm going over to Luna's,” she said.

“Will her father be there, dear?” asked Molly, concerned.

“I'm not sure, but Nev will be, and probably Seamus, maybe even Dean,” said Ginny. She patted her dad's shoulder as she passed him. “I may stay for tea. We have a lot to talk about. Bye.”

“Talk about what?” called Ron, as she stepped into the huge fireplace. Either she didn't hear him or she chose to ignore him. “Luna Lovegood's home,” she called out, and in a flash of green flames, she was gone.

“Have either of you had a decent conversation with Gin since the battle?” asked Ron, as they headed back to his bedroom. “Me either,” he responded glumly, when they both shook their heads.

“I spoke a bit to Luna when we were all at Shell Cottage. She was actually quite comforting,” said Hermione, recalling that traumatic time after Malfoy Manor. “It sounded like Hogwarts was a terrible place to be.”

“I feel sorry for the firsties, you know. Probably been looking forward to going to Hogwarts most of their life, then to find yourself being taught by Death Eaters...” Ron shook his head at the thought of it.

“Ginny, Neville and the others all tried to look out for them,” said Hermione. She looked at Harry. “I heard they even took curses meant for them.”

The thought of Ginny being under a curse, being in physical pain, made Harry so angry, he didn't even realise his fists were clenched until Hermione reached over to pat them. “Harry, this is not your fault.”

“I know,” he lied, getting off the bed. “Think I'll go for a walk. See you in a bit.”

He walked around the Burrow's yard, picturing him and Ginny flying together there like they did in the summer before his sixth year. Why hadn't he talked to her properly before now? If anyone deserved to know what had happened at the end, it was Ginny. He really wanted her to know she was his last thought.

Did it really matter any more? She clearly didn't want to get back together and she was returning to Hogwarts soon.

No, he owed it to her to explain everything. And by everything, he meant everything. Especially the things he hadn't even told Ron and Hermione, like how important she was to him, how seeing her nearly get hit by Bellatrix had made him forget battling Voldemort until her mother stepped in. How important it was to him that she stay in the Room of Requirement, stay safe. He had needed her to be safe.

He rubbed his eyes. He should have sought her out before now. He had thought, if he spoke to everyone, got it out the way, it would eventually give him more time for her. But then he'd gone with Ron and Hermione to Australia, feeling he owed Hermione his support in finding her parents. By the time they'd returned, Ginny was spending more time with her friends.

He returned to the house to find Bill and Fleur, as well as Percy, had arrived to have
dinner with the family. Harry noticed Bill's eyes kept drifting to the family clock, where Ginny's hand was still on 'visiting'.

Ginny Flooed home as they were sitting around after dessert. She declined anything to eat, saying she had eaten at Luna's.

“Hey Bill, can I get you to take a look at my broom?” she asked, gesturing with her head for him to come outside.

Bill moaned. “Can't it wait?” he asked, patting his full stomach.

“No,” said Ginny, “it can't.” She stared at him pointedly.

Fleur nudged Bill. “All right, all right,” he said, getting up and following Ginny out the door.

Harry watched them go, sure there was more to checking out the broom than Ginny had let on.

Sure enough, just over half an hour later, when they returned, Bill didn't look happy. Ginny touched his arm in thanks before heading upstairs.

Bill turned to Ron. “Do you guys mind?” He shooed them away. “I need to talk to Mum and Dad-alone.”

Hermione and Harry stood immediately, but Ron stayed seated. “About what?” he asked.

“You'll find out soon enough, so scram,” said Bill. Ron reluctantly followed Harry and Hermione up the stairs, but whispered for them to stop and listen.

Harry's heart grew heavy as he heard that Ginny and most of the others from his year who had returned to Hogwarts would be called on to testify in a special hearing. The Carrows were claiming they were under the Imperius curse, and therefore should not be sent to Azkaban for any of their actions while under the curse.

Ginny had been asked to testify, and she didn't want her parents to hear what she had been through.

“Shit, Mum's coming,” hissed Ron, and they all raced upstairs. Harry was the last, and as he was heading to Ron's room, Ginny came out from her bedroom. They stood there, staring at each other for several seconds before she spoke.

“You know, don't you?” It was almost rhetorical, but Harry nodded anyway.

“Ginny, I-” he began, when she interrupted.

“Harry, I don't want you in the courtroom when I have to speak,” she said.

“What? Why?” he asked. Of course he wanted to be there, needed to, almost. He wanted to know what she had been through.

Ginny simply shook her head. “Please, Harry,” she implored. “Promise me you won't be in the courtroom.”

Harry nearly drowned in her beautiful sad brown eyes. “I-I-” He was trying to think quickly of some way of not promising anything, for his first thought had been to wear the Invisibility cloak. But Ginny was too smart for him.

“I'll know, you know,” she said softly, stepping closer. “I did that night, when you passed me on the Hogwart's grounds.”

“You knew?” he blurted out.

Ginny nodded sadly and took a smaller step closer. “Please, Harry. Promise me,” she said.

Molly's steps were louder now as she huffed her way up the several flights. “Ginny, is that you up there?” she called.

Ginny's eyes stayed on Harry. He nodded slightly. “I promise,” he said, although it went against everything in his protective nature.

Ginny nodded gratefully. “Yeah, it's me, Mum,” she called out. “Thanks,” she said softly to him, as she headed downstairs to meet her mum.

Harry watched her go. It had been the closest they'd been since the battle was over, and practically the only moment they'd been completely alone. And what had she done? Asked him to stay away.

With his head bowed, Harry continued on to Ron's room, barely noticing his two friends had certainly made up for his absence by snogging madly.

/*/*/*/*

Neville stood and made his way out of the courtroom after he'd given compelling evidence. Seamus was up next, then Ginny. She fidgeted nervously, and it was Seamus who patted her hand in support as he stood to make his way over to the centre of the court.

Her brother Bill had accompanied her to the trial, as was her wish. It would kill her parents to hear what she had been subjected to, and George was in no condition to deal with that on top of his overwhelming grief for Fred. Percy had been considered, while Ron wasn't even an option. Ginny didn't want to turn this into a circus any more than it was, and if one of the Golden Trio appeared, then that's what would happen. In the end she'd asked Bill to accompany her, and he sat in the row behind her now.

The members of Dumbledore's Army 2 had walked in together, presenting a united front. Ginny had glanced around several times, but Harry had kept his word, as she was sure he would.

She didn't know how she knew when he was under his Invisibility cloak; it was as if she could sense him. She had done so that night, when he went to the Forbidden Forest.

Neville slipped into the seat next to her. “How's Shay doing?” he whispered to her.

Ginny realised she hadn't heard a thing Seamus had said. “Good,” she lied, “he's doing good.”

Neville looked at her in understanding. “You'll be okay. It's a bit nerve wracking at first, but just think about the question before you answer.”

Ginny smiled. “You make it sound easy,” she said.

Neville shook his head. “When you leave the courtroom, you go to the left, and find yourself in the hall. Do what I did, just take some time for yourself. At least, with you being last, you can leave straight after you've testified.” There would be no result today.

Ginny nodded, watching as Seamus stood and exited the courtroom.

“The court calls Ginevra Weasley to the stand,” announced a man.

Taking a deep breath, Ginny stood. Neville nodded encouragingly at her, and Bill squeezed her hand as she walked past him. Once again, there was no sign of Harry.

It was the way she had wanted it. To protect him, for she knew he would blame himself for every curse she'd willingly taken, every cut and bruise, every scar on her body.

“Please state your name and age?”

“Ginevra Weasley, seventeen,” she said, focusing on the man asking the questions.

“Ginevra, in your own words, please tell us about your year at Hogwarts from September first, 1997, to May second, 1998,” she was asked.

Ginny nodded, and opened her mouth to speak.

/*/*/*/*

An hour later, she was dismissed. She felt like a limp noodle, stumbling a bit as she stood off the dais where she had been seated. She was pointed towards an exit, and she headed for the door. She was drained from all the repetitive questions; her head hurt from thinking so much, and her heart hurt from re-living that horrific time. She was aware her hands were shaking as she pushed the door open.

She leaned against the wall, moving slowly and breathing deeply. Her eyes were unfocused as she wondered if she had left out anything vital to tell the court. From her periphery she saw movement, and she looked up.

Her heart leaped as Harry stood, looking uncertainly at her. Suddenly she needed him; needed to get to him. She pushed off the wall, and hurried to him, her eyes blurring.

Harry hurried to meet her. Ginny looked as though she might collapse at any minute.

They met half way. Harry's arm wrapped around her shoulders and hers wrapped around his waist. Her face turned into his neck, inhaling the comforting smell of him. A tear ran down her face, and he felt it against his own skin.

“Are you okay?” he asked, almost urgently. The urge to hurt whoever had made his strong Ginny like this was almost uncontrollable.

Ginny took a breath, inhaling him in. “I'm okay,” she said, feeling better every second.

Harry's eyes met Neville's over her head, and Harry mouthed 'thank you' to Neville, who had told him to wait here, sure that Ginny would need him after her turn in speaking. Neville nodded and turned to return to the courtroom.

“Let's get out of here,” said Harry, turning to walk away, his arm still around her shoulders.

“Not the Burrow...not yet,” muttered Ginny, hating the weakness she felt. All she needed was her mother to baby her and she would probably bawl like one.

“Okay,” agreed Harry, looking left and right for the quickest way out. He hesitated. “Trust me?”

“Of course,” she said, immediately. He swung the Invisibility cloak over them and they walked past the reporters waiting nearby. They went to the Atrium and Harry led her into the huge fireplaces and muttered, “Grimmauld Place.”

He stepped out, stumbling as usual. She actually steadied him, smiling sympathetically, before she remembered. He took her hand and led her to the sofa. He went to move away, give her some space but she grabbed his hand and held on as if it were a life line.

He said nothing, but watched her worriedly. He had never seen Ginny so defeated, apart from the day they buried Fred.

“I'm so weak,” she whispered, almost to herself. She was shaking again, and she couldn't stop it.

“Gin, you're one of the strongest witches I know,” said Harry, gently.

Tears welled up in her eyes and she angrily shook her head. “No, I'm not,” she said. “If I was stronger, I would never have let myself be fooled by Riddle my first year,” she said.

“Gin, you were eleven,” said Harry, surprised. He hated the tears that ran down her face.

“But I knew better,” she protested, angry at herself. “And then there was the final battle,” she said.

“What about it?” he asked, brushing some hair behind her ear.

“When I thought you had...died.” She closed her eyes to ward off the image of Hagrid carrying his body back.

“Gin, I'm sorry, I had to-”

“I wanted to die, too,” she said suddenly, angrily. “I didn't care who I fought, or if I was killed. I never thought I'd be one of those girls, I mocked those girls who thought their lives were over if they got dumped, but Harry, that was me! I didn't want to live in a world without you,” she said, teary again. “And then I found myself facing Bellatrix, until my mum stepped in. What if she had been killed by that bitch, because I'd been so weak,” she sobbed. "And now this..."

Harry pulled her into his arms, reassuring her over and over that she was strong, that he was okay, that her mum was okay, that they were all okay.”

She shook her head. “I'm trying to help George, and I'm still conflicted about Percy. Luna keeps telling me she's fine, but I'm so worried about what happened to her at Malfoy Manor. She doesn't say much, not to me. I think she's talking to Dean about it, though,” she said.

Harry stroked her hair, closing his eyes to the familiar flowery fragrance. “Ginny, that's a huge load you're carrying. How about, right now, we just take care of you,” he said gently.

She yawned; all the emotion was making her sleepy. “Mind if I use your loo?” she asked.

“Sure, want me to come with you?” he asked, remembering how shaky she was minutes ago.

She smiled. “I've been toilet trained since I was one, Harry,” she teased gently.

He nudged her shoulder, blushing. “One, really?” he asked doubtfully.

“I was a high achiever,” she boasted, before giving him a grin. “Actually, anything Ron and my brothers did, I wanted to do too,” she admitted. “Unfortunately, that meant I learnt to pee standing up.”

Harry laughed out loud as he watched her go up the stairs. He did notice that she leaned heavily on the railings as she went up, though.

POP. “Kreacher heard Master laughing. It is good to have Master home and happy,” said the house elf.

“Thank you, Kreacher. Could you perhaps bring tea and any biscuits or cake you may have?” asked Harry. “For two,” he added quickly.

“Is Miss Hermione or Mister Ron here too?” asked Kreacher happily.

“Erm, no, it's someone else,” said Harry.

“I see,” said Kreacher, speculatively. His eyes narrowed, then he nodded. “I see,” he repeated, smiling softly.

The Floo suddenly flared as Kreacher returned to the kitchen. Hermione and Ron came out, hurrying over to Harry.

“ Have you seen Ginny? Bill said she was pretty upset when she left the courtroom,” asked Ron.

“I'm surprised, Harry, I thought you'd be there for Ginny,” said Hermione, in a disappointing tone.

“Harry was there for me,” said Ginny coolly, rejoining them. She was in no mood to deal with Hermione and Ron so she looked at Harry. “I should go. Thanks...for everything,” she said. She began walking to the fireplace.

“Ginny, where were-” began Ron.

“Does this mean you-” started Hermione at the same time as Ron. She was looking eagerly at them both.

“Stop,” yelled Harry. “Ginny, please stop,” he practically begged. He turned back to his two best friends. “You've seen that Ginny is okay, but she just needs some space, and I've offered her that here. Please go and tell Molly that she'll be home later,” he requested.

“You're kicking us out?” asked Ron.

Hermione scoffed. “Of course he's not ki-”

“Yes,” said Harry, firmly. “I am. Go, now...please,” he added.

“Well, really,” said Hermione in surprise.

“Geez mate, don't hold back, tell us how you feel,” said Ron, ticked off.

Ginny said nothing, not wanting to interrupt the dynamics of the threesome. Somehow she had a feeling things just changed between them.

She watched Harry uncertainly once they had left. “I could have gone,” she offered.

Harry shook his head. He patted the seat next to him on the sofa. “Sit, before you fall down. Kreacher's making tea,” he said.

As if he heard his name mentioned, the house elf appeared. “Miss Ginny! Kreacher remembers you from a long time ago. You spent time with Master Sirius, and the Hippogryph. Your brothers knocked you down the stairs,” he said.

“Good times,” said Ginny, humourlessly. Her energy had waned again, and her body felt heavy, ready for sleep. “Thanks for the tea, Kreacher,” she said. She picked up a cup and sipped it, closing her eyes as the warmth flooded her body. She preferred Harry's body heat, though. She sat next to him on the large sofa.

“Thanks, Kreacher,” said Harry, picking up a cup for himself. Kreacher bowed and disappeared.

Harry watched Ginny; she appeared quiet and sad again. “Sorry about Ron and Hermione,” he said quietly.

Ginny's eyes opened and looked at him. “I'm surprised they thought I'd be here, with you.”

“I know,” he admitted. “That you're surprised, that is,” he said.

Ginny nodded, yawning. Without thinking about it, she leaned her head on his shoulder.

“Gin, you look exhausted. Why don't you lay down and have a sleep?” offered Harry.

The sofa was comfy, and the idea was appealing. She didn't want to return to the Burrow for the grilling she was sure she would get. She yawned again, and made Harry yawn too. She grinned at him. He grinned back. “See what you started!”

They sat together, saying nothing. The silence wasn't uncomfortable though.

“I'm glad you were there, Harry,” she said sleepily. “Not inside, but after.”

He swallowed. “I'll always be there for you, Gin.” He leaned his head against hers and without meaning to, they fell asleep propping each other up.

/*/*/*/*

Ginny woke, enveloped in the warmest blanket she'd ever had. She moved to snuggle closer to it, her nose nuzzling against cool skin. Her lips darted out to taste the saltiness.

Harry was in the middle of a wonderful dream. It was him and Ginny, in the warmth of the summer sun on the grounds at Hogwarts and she was kissing that sweet spot under his chin. He moaned, not wanting to wake...ever.

Ginny heard him moan. Slowly she opened her eyes and found herself staring at the stubble on Harry's chin. Gently she reached up to run her fingers over it. She sighed when she thought of how much Harry had changed during his year away from her. Not a boy any longer, he was a man; a leader.

Harry felt her fingers on him. Was it the dream, or really happening? Either way, he wanted more. He leaned into her touch.

He'd only suspected how important she was to him, until he saw her again at Hogwarts. They'd hurt her, touched her, and very nearly broken her. He would never forgive them for that.

“Harry,” she whispered, as he leaned his face into her palm.

His eyes burned into her, blazing green. They softened as she looked back at him. “How are you feeling now?” he asked softly.

Ginny thought about it. “Better. Lighter. I think...telling my story, getting it out there, has helped,” she said.

“Good. That's good,” he said.

“But I think being with you helped me, too,” she said.

Reluctantly she sat up and glanced at the clock. “I guess I should go,” she said. Her gaze dropped back to the hair on his chin then downwards, to the hair that peeked through the v of his shirt.

“Do you have to go already? I hoped we could talk, if you're up for it...about us,” he asked, tentatively; hopefully. He paused. “Is there still an us?”

Ginny's eyes went back to his. “I think there's still an us. We've just put us on the back burner, as our world returns to normal, or some form of it.”

“Merlin, I'd kill for some normal,” sighed Harry.

Ginny found that funny, so she laughed. Harry grinned to hear her, and gathered her close to him again, kissing her forehead.

Ginny quietened. “I don't think you'd know what to do with normal,” she said.

“I'd like to find out...with you,” he said.

She smiled up at him, and he lowered his head to place his lips against hers. She opened her mouth slightly, kissing him back, and their kisses were soft, gentle and perfect.

They stayed like that for several minutes, finally coming up for air. “I really should go,” she said again, but this time she sat up and stood.

Harry didn't want her to leave.

“You know, it's nearly dinner time at the Burrow, and Mum would love nothing more than to feed you. Why don't you come with me?” She held out her hand.

He reached out to take it, and stood too. “Maybe we can take a walk after dinner?” he asked.

Ginny nodded. “I'd like that,” she said.

Harry smiled. “Kreacher?” he called.

Kreacher appeared from behind the stairs where he had been unashamedly been listening. “Master called for Kreacher?” he asked.

“I won't be in for dinner, but I'll be back later,” he told his house elf.

“Very good, Master,” he nodded, eyeing the couple's clasped hands.

Smiling at each other, they went to the fireplace. Harry gestured for Ginny to go first, and he followed happily.

“Very good, indeed,” muttered Kreacher, aloud.

Several years later-

Deputy Head Auror Harry Potter sighed as he searched for the file that held the relevant information on the case they'd been following for weeks. He called out, “Come in,” when there was a knock on his office door.

An intern from Reasearch came in, holding several files. “Sir, we've searched the files, and these were the closest we found to the torture of the girls similar to your case,” he said.

“Good, great work. Erm, just leave them here,” said Harry, clearing a small space on his desk.

The intern hesitated, making Harry look up. “What is it?” he asked.

“Sir, these are court documents taken from Hogwarts students under Headmaster Snape. Erm, your wife's name is among them,” he said.

Harry reached out for them, and the intern handed them over. Harry flicked through them, seeing names of his friends. Seamus, Neville, Luna, Parvati, Susan...Ginny. “Thank you, Davis,” he said.

“Um, you need to sign them out, sir,” said Davis. He handed Harry a clipboard, and Harry initialled the paperwork. Davis quickly left Harry's office.

He read through them all, leaving Ginny's till last. Even then, he hesitated, remembering his promise to not hear her give the information inside. Still, the details may be relevant to his current case, so he slowly opened it and began to read.

They had talked about that terrible time, naturally, but seeing it down in black and white, and remembering Ginny's state as she left the courtroom, left Harry feeling shaken from the rawness of her testimony. He packed up and left for the day, needing to be home. Needing Ginny.

He Flooed home three hours later. As he crossed the lounge, he heard laughter from their kitchen, so he headed there. He stood in the doorway and watched as three year old James was trying to feed fifteen month old Albus, while Ginny watched on, amused.

“Daddy,” cried James, spotting him first. He ran over to him to hug him, getting mashed potato all over his pants.

“Dada,” said Albus, waving his arms in the air for Harry to pick him up.

Harry picked James up and dropped a kiss on Albus' head. “How's my boys?” he asked.

“Good,” they both said, and he encouraged them to go back to eating their dinner.

Ginny brought a plate of food over to him, setting it in front of him. She placed her hand on his shoulder. “All right?” she asked in concern.

He looked up at her, nodding. He slipped an arm around her waist, and she bent to kiss him. James hooted while Albus laughed.

Harry watched her interact with their boys all night. He loved watching his family, sometimes still finding it hard to believe they were his. From dinner, to bath time to bed time, she was playful and fun, laughing when the boys made bubble beards, or bubble hats. She was firm when it came to brushing teeth and the usual bed time ritual, leaving Harry to read the boys a story.

He returned to their bedroom once the boys had fallen asleep. “Harry, what is it?” asked Ginny, worriedly. She had known something was bothering him from the moment he got home, and had felt his eyes on her all night.

“You know this case I'm working on? A couple of the missing girls have been found-tortured quite badly,” he said quietly.

“That's terrible,” she said, pulling him down to sit next to her on their bed. “How old are they?” she asked.

“The eldest was eighteen, the youngest only fourteen,” said Harry.

Ginny shook her head, but looked at him when he picked up her hand.

“I asked our research team to look through the archives for anything remotely connected to torture of young people, just to see if there was any similarities, any patterns. He-he brought me several old files from a court hearing,” said Harry. It didn't take Ginny long to understand his meaning.

“Mine,” guessed Ginny. Harry nodded, bowing his head. “Did you read it?” she asked gently.

Harry nodded.

“Were there any similarities?” she asked. Harry shook his head, and she let out a sigh of relief. “Good. That's-good,” she said.

He wrapped his arms around her. “I hate that you went through that,” he said, resting his head on her chest, feeling her heart beat. The alternative was unthinkable.

She tilted his head up and kissed him lightly. “It's well in the past, Harry, and it's made me who I am today. Don't dwell on it, love. I'm living the life I dreamed about, with you and the boys, and I couldn't be happier,” she said truthfully.

“I hate to think of you in pain, under the Cruciatus,” said Harry softly.

“And I hate to think of you walking into the forest to meet Riddle, knowing what was going to happen when you got there. Harry, we did what we had to do back then. I couldn't let some first year take a curse, Harry, and you know you'd do the same,” she reasoned quietly.

He reached up to cup her chin. “I just love you so much, you and James and Albus. If you had been killed...I can't imagine what my life would be,” he said, almost desperately.

She ran her fingers through his hair. “You don't have to, Harry. We made it through, and we're together. That's all that matters, right?” She kissed him.

He deepened the kiss, taking control. He lay over her, needing her to know, needing to show her, how much she meant to him.

He loved her throughout the night, eventually watching her fall asleep. He held her close, eventually following her into slumber.

Lily Luna was conceived that night.

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