|SIYE Time:6:53 on 21st October 2018|
Story is Complete
Summary: Ginny goes into labour. How will Harry and her family deal with it?
Hitcount: Story Total: 1710
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.
Thanks so much to Arnel! I appreciate the quick beta work. This is my take on Ginny having a baby. It was inspired by one of my students talking about how she didn't want anyone except her husband with her in the delivery room. I thought Ginny would feel the same way.
Ginny tried to relax, but she felt so big and uncomfortable. She hated to think it, but she was ready for this pregnancy to be over. Since late afternoon she’d been having pain, but nothing regular. She really hoped this was it. A couple weeks ago she’d gone to hospital in false labour. Her brothers had teased her mercilessly so she really didn’t want to do that again.
“Do you want some more water, love?”
Ginny smiled up at her husband. “Yes, please.”
“Are you hungry?”
Wrinkling her nose, Ginny said, “I don’t know. Maybe some toast?”
“Toast coming up.”
A smile stayed on her face as she watched him head into the kitchen. Harry was so nervous, but he was trying so hard. He’d taken their parenting classes seriously and talked to both her father and oldest brother for advice. While he was worried about what kind of father he would be, she had no worries. He was great with Teddy and with Bill’s daughters Torie and Dominique.
He returned with her water, a stack of toast, and a kiss on the forehead. He settled on the arm of her chair for a moment and wrapped an arm around her. After taking a sip of water, she leaned against him and snuggled into his side. The two sat quietly listening to the WWN program while snacking on toast.
Finishing her water, she groaned at the insistence of her bladder. He smiled down at her sympathetically. “Do you need to get up?”
She nodded and he stood and pulled her to her feet. For a moment, she leaned against him, she loved feeling his firm chest and warmth and hearing his heartbeat. She wrapped her arms around him before she looked up. “I’m going to take a shower.”
“Okay,” he said a bit doubtfully.
“I’ll be fine,” she insisted.
The warm water felt good. She really thought this was it, she was hoping her baby would be born today. Well, maybe tomorrow as she realized it was almost midnight. When the water started feeling a little cooler, she quickly washed up. Reluctantly she used her wand to dry her hair. Normally she just let it dry, but she was tired and didn’t want to lay down with wet hair.
Another pain raced across her abdomen. Putting her hand on her stomach, it was rock hard as the muscles contracted. Automatically she cast the timing spell the midwife had taught her. As the pain stopped, she finished drying her hair. Walking into the bedroom, another pain took hold. Glancing at her wand, she found it had only been four minutes.
“Gin?” Harry was standing the doorway to their bedroom.
“I think this is it,” she said nervously.
Harry nodded. She could tell he was nervous, but most people wouldn’t have detected the tell-tale signs. “Okay.”
He grabbed her bag from their bedroom. “Do you need to add anything?”
“Can you put my hairbrush and toothbrush in there?” she asked as she walked past him to get dressed. She decided to wear her favourite maternity dress with a long, loose skirt and slipped sandals on her feet.
It didn’t take long before they were safely ensconced in the St Mungo’s maternity ward. Luckily, the only photographer outside had been distracted so they made it into the hospital without the press noticing.
Ginny didn’t want to lay down on the bed yet so she paced around the room. Suddenly she felt something wet on her legs. Her eyes widened. The nurse saw the look on her face and hurried to her side.
“It’s okay, Mrs Potter. Your waters broke.”
With a few waves of her wand, the nurse cleaned up the mess and had Ginny in a clean nightgown. The midwife came in to examine her and declared that she was already seven centimetres dilated. Ginny was relieved that this wasn’t another false alarm.
She still wasn’t ready to lay down, she held tightly to Harry’s arm she walked around the unit. There was another couple also walking and they exchanged nervous smiles when they crossed paths.
“I’m scared,” Ginny whispered when they walked back into their room.
“What are you scared about, love?”
She shrugged. “I don’t know. I’ve been looking forward to this for months and now that it’s going to happen soon, I don’t feel ready.”
“You are going to be a great mum,” Harry reassured her. “You are so good with Teddy and your nieces. I know we don’t exactly know what we are doing, but we can learn together. I’m a bit nervous too. I’m not looking forward to seeing you in pain.”
She grimaced, “I’m not too excited about that part either.”
“You are one of the strongest, bravest people I’ve known in my whole life,” he said leaning forward to kiss her briefly. “I just hope I can be there for you.”
“I have no doubt about that part,” she said. She grabbed his hand as another contraction took hold. He stroked her hair until her grip loosened and she looked up. “I want to walk again.”
The pair spent the early morning hours walking the corridors. The lights were dim and the corridors were quiet. They would occasionally see other expectant parents and the nursing staff would check on them. Harry hated seeing the pain crossing her face, but he was so impressed and proud of her. They stopped periodically so Ginny could drink some water or use the loo.
Finally, at around five in the morning, Ginny lay down. Her nurse was able to give her calming potion to help with the pain and let her sleep a little. Harry hadn’t planned on sleeping, but once Ginny fell asleep he did the same.
Later he was glad he did because she woke a short three hours later. In was now morning and the corridors were a bit louder and more crowded and Ginny didn’t want to walk with so many people. Instead, she was making circuits around the room.
“I want to walk again,” Ginny announced. Harry obediently stood and helped her up. When he went to hold her hand, she pulled away. “No, I can do it myself.”
Harry stepped back and tried to not let that hurt his feelings. The nurses had warned him that sometimes she might not want to be touched, but this was the first time she’d said anything.
“I’m sorry,” Ginny was standing in front of him. Harry smiled gently. “It’s okay, love.”
“I just…I want it over.”
“It will be,” Harry said. “Remember, they said you are very close.”
She nodded and headed for the bathroom. Harry winced when he heard the retching. After flushing the toilet and washing her face, she came back out a bit paler than before. “I want some ice.”
Harry helped her back into bed and left to get more ice chips. He saw her nurse and let her know Ginny was throwing up.
“I will bring in a potion,” she said soothingly. “I don’t think it will be much longer.”
When he returned with the ice chips, he helped her sit up so she could eat a few. The nurse, Michele, came in and gave Ginny a potion. She checked the monitoring runes that had been applied when she walked in.
“Very good,” Michele said. “You are ten centimetres dilated and one hundred percent effaced. Do you feel the urge to push?”
Ginny shook her head miserably. Michele waved her wand and a quick beating sound was heard through the room. Ginny perked up and looked over at her husband. “That’s the baby?”
Michele nodded. “That’s the baby. He’s doing very well, but I think he is ready to come out.”
As Michele predicted, within ten minutes Ginny felt the need to push. Harry stayed right by her side for the next hour.
Ginny leaned back against Harry panting. “I’m so tired of pushing.”
“You’re doing great, love,” he said as he kissed her on the top of her head.
The midwife was at the foot of the bed. “One more big push, Ginny.”
James Sirius Potter had finally arrived. Harry’s hand shook slightly when he cut the cord. Ginny reached out with shaking hands and took him in her arms. “Harry.”
Sinking down into the chair next to her, he couldn’t take his eyes off the pair of them. Ginny met his eyes. Her brown eyes were filled with tears. She smiled, “He’s finally here.”
“He is,” Harry whispered. He watched as the midwife checked the baby over and cleaned him off.
“Everything looks really good,” the midwife said. She cast identifying runes on the baby and examined him. “We are going to take him to the nursery for just a little bit.”
Once James left the room, Michele helped Ginny get cleaned up and cleaned the bed. Harry took a turn around the unit by himself. He couldn’t believe he was really a father. Everyone had told him that he would love his baby without question, but he’d worried about it. What the hell did he know about being a father?
He’d talked quite a bit to Bill. He loved taking care of his nieces and George’s son, Fred. He thought he wanted to be more like Bill and less like George. While George unquestionably loved his son, he was still a little broken and Harry knew that Angelina did a bulk of the work.
Stopping by the nursery window, Harry noticed that James wasn’t in his bassinet yet. He wasn’t worried as that was to be expected. He and Ginny had talked quite a bit about what to do once the baby came. He was leaning towards taking a few months off to stay home with Ginny and James. Kingsley didn’t have a problem with it and it wasn’t like Harry needed the money. He would have to talk it over with Ginny again, but he really didn’t want to miss anything.
When he returned to the room, Ginny was back in bed. A few minutes later, Michele brought James back. Harry loved the way Ginny’s eyes lit up at the sight of the baby. Michele helped walk Ginny through her first attempt at breast feeding. James fell asleep after feeding. Harry was able to hold him for the first time. He was so tiny. Looking over, he noticed Ginny had fallen asleep. Settling back in his chair, he talked softly to his son, telling him all about his amazing mother.
Harry couldn’t stop smiling as he watched Ginny and James, sleep. It had been a long sixteen hours. It felt like they’d walked miles around the corridors of the hospital and Harry had fetched endless cups of ice chips and had his hand crushed by his wife, but in the end, it was all worth it.
As he watched, Ginny’s eyes opened. She looked around and met his eyes. She smiled a luminous smile as she took James back from Harry. “I still can’t believe he’s here. I’m really a mum.”
Leaning over, Harry kissed her softly before dropping a kiss on James’ soft head. “And I’m a dad. We’re a real family now.”
“The Potters,” Ginny said with a happy look in her eyes. She stroked the baby’s soft downy cheek. James had a head full of soft black hair and blue eyes. “He is so perfect.”
With a sigh she glanced up at the clock that hung on the wall. It was now 8:05 pm, James had been born at 4:22 pm. “I guess we should let people know.”
“I know,” Harry sighed. “I’ve really enjoyed this time together.”
She blew him a kiss. “Me, too. I’m glad it was just the two of us.”
He shrugged. “It made sense to me.” He sent her a wicked grin. “After all, we were alone when he was created.”
She laughed. “That we were, my love.”
Getting to his feet, he stretched before leaning in and giving both Ginny and James another kiss before heading to the nearest Floo. Within ten minutes, the waiting room was filled with boisterous red-heads.
“Harry, dear, let me see Ginny,” Molly said as she bustled over to him. “If I know my daughter, she’ll be a handful. You probably won’t want to be in there. A girl needs her mother at this time. The boys can keep you company. Arthur always used to go to the tea shop.”
“Any bets on how long she’ll be in labour?” George asked.
Harry ignored the cacophony as Ginny’s brothers and their partners tried to guess how long Ginny would be in labour. George and Ron were going on about the spells they thought Ginny would use against Harry.
He shook his head; it really hadn’t been like that at all. He’d hated seeing Ginny in pain, but he thought she was amazing the way she’d come through labour. Without a word, Harry led his mother-in-law back to Ginny’s room.
“How is she?” Molly asked anxiously. “The first baby can be awfully difficult.”
“She’s great,” Harry said proudly. He pushed open the door to Ginny’s room. “Molly, I’d like you to meet your grandson, James Sirius Potter.”
Her jaw dropped open. “What do you mean? The baby has already been born? Why didn’t you contact me? I would have been happy to come. I should have been here for my daughter whilst she was in labour! What were you thinking?”
Harry stared at her in confusion. Of all the reactions Molly might have had to the birth of her grandson, anger wasn’t a reaction he expected.
“Mum! Come meet James,” Ginny called from the bed, unaware of any undercurrents between her husband and mother.
With one last glare at her son-in-law, Molly sailed over to the bed. “He’s beautiful, Ginny! Oh, my look at all of his black hair.”
Carefully, Ginny handed her son off to his grandmother. “I’ve already fed him. I think that’s going to be a lot harder than I thought it would be.”
Molly smiled down at the baby before focusing on her daughter’s words. “How long was your labour? It must have been very short.”
“Short?” Ginny laughed. “No, it was a little over sixteen hours. I was having some pain on and off yesterday evening, but didn’t realize exactly what was happening. We came here around midnight.”
“Midnight? Well…when was he born?” Molly spluttered.
“Almost half past four this afternoon,” Ginny replied.
“Half four? It’s after eight now! Why didn’t you call us?”
Ginny’s smile fell off her face as she finally realized her mother was upset. “Mum. We…we just wanted some time with the three of us. I thought about having him call you earlier, but if we called you than everyone else would show up. I didn’t want my brothers out there making fun of me and laughing about me being in labour.” Tears started filling her eyes and Harry hurried to her side.
“At my baby shower George and Ron kept making fun of me and they kept moaning and saying I was going to sound like a cow in labour. I didn’t want to listen to that.”
Harry gathered his wife in his arms glaring at his mother-in-law. “They upset her two weeks ago when she had false labour — claiming she was too stupid to know if she was in labour or not. She didn’t need that rubbish.”
Molly deflated when she saw how upset her daughter was. “I’m sorry, love. I know the boys get a little out of hand sometimes, but they didn’t mean anything by it. They were only having fun with you. I just…I just assumed you would want me here when you had your baby.”
“I didn’t want anyone but Harry,” Ginny said honestly. “We are starting our own family and we wanted just the two of us here. When Freddy was born, it was such a circus, I didn’t want that. I love all my brothers, but I’d rather see most of them at home, not here. I tried telling all of you that, but everyone thought I was kidding. I’m not and I wasn’t.”
Molly blinked back tears, but nodded. “I didn’t realize you meant me, too. I just…your father always wanted to head to the tea room when I started pushing. I guess I assumed Harry would be the same.”
Ginny smiled up at Harry who was still holding her. “No, he was wonderful. He walked and walked with me, he helped me in everything. I honestly couldn’t have done it without him. He gave me strength when I didn’t think I had any left.”
Molly lowered her eyes as her son-in-law kissed her daughter. Thinking back, she did remember Ginny saying she didn’t want everyone there, but honestly, she hadn’t paid much attention. The baby in her arms demanded her attention and she automatically started swaying as she soothed the infant. It was something she had a lot of practice in doing and James settled quickly. While her feelings were hurt, she knew she couldn’t upset Ginny over this.
“I’m going to get Ron and Hermione,” Harry announced. “They should be the first to meet their godson.”
“And my dad.”
“And your dad,” he agreed with a smile.
Heading out the waiting room, he had to smile as the noise he heard as he was approaching. He was really glad they had waited to call the family.
“Arthur, Ginny is asking for you,” Harry said easily. For all of Molly Weasley’s mothering, he always felt more at ease with the more low key Arthur Weasley.
“Excellent,” he said as he jumped to his feet.
Harry surveyed the room and to his dismay George and Ron were cracking jokes that weren’t necessarily appropriate. While he normally appreciated their humour, he knew Ginny wouldn’t right now. Since Fred’s death, George’s humour sometimes took on a harder, meaner edge. When he and Ron started, they didn’t always know when to stop.
Making up his mind, Harry turned to his oldest brother-in-law. “Bill, Ginny would like to see you as well.”
Bill nodded and Harry could tell he was pleased to be included. As the three men walked down the corridor, Arthur asked, “How is she?”
“She is amazing,” Harry laughed. Pushing open the door to her room, he smiled to see Molly settled into the chair holding James. “Please meet James Sirius Potter.”
Both men gasped as Molly turned the baby towards them. Arthur hurried to his daughter’s side. “Ginny girl.” Harry had to blink away his tears as Arthur gathered up his daughter in a big hug.
Bill walked over to his mother and crouched down so he could see the baby. “He’s beautiful.”
Harry nodded. “He is.”
Reluctantly, Molly gave the baby to her son. Bill stood and walked over to Harry cradling the baby in his arms. “Everything is okay?”
“Yes, they’ve already examined him and gave him the potions,” Harry said. “Ginny is doing great.”
“How long have you been here?”
“Since around midnight. It was actually pretty amazing wandering the corridors s last night — it was so quiet and calm. Ginny is brilliant. She was so strong.”
“It’s quite humbling, isn’t it?” Bill asked quietly.
Harry nodded. Although he hadn’t really planned it, he was glad he’d brought Bill back first. His emotions were still a bit raw, and he wasn’t ready for the teasing that would come from the other Weasley brothers.
Bill reached out with one arm and hugged Harry. “Congrats, Dad.”
“A bit shocking, isn’t it?”
“In a good way,” Harry confirmed. He accepted the baby back from Bill. “I hope I will be a good one. The only clear memory I have of my father is him dying so I could live. That’s a lot to live up to.”
“It is,” Bill agreed. “Do you understand now why he did it?”
A smile crossed Harry’s face and he nodded. “I never quite understood before, but I do now.”
“I think you’ll do just fine.”
Bill and Harry drifted over to the bed and Arthur took the opportunity to take the baby. Ginny watched with a happy smile as her son bonded with his grandfather.
Molly stood up. “I’m going to let the others know what is going on.”
Ginny’s face clouded over as her mother left the room. She looked over at her father. “Is she going to be mad at me all night?”
“Actually, I think she’s mad at me,” Harry interjected. “She thinks I talked you into this.”
“I will talk to her,” Arthur promised. “I don’t think you did anything wrong, but you know your mother. She had it in her mind that she would be here for the birth.”
Ginny shook her head. “I’m sorry that Mum is upset, but there is no way I’d want her there. This was our moment.”
Out in the waiting room, the assembled Weasleys looked up as Molly entered. George called out, “How’s it going in there? Ginny used any good spells?”
“Ginny already had the baby.”
“What?” came from all corners of the room.
Molly nodded. “She’s been here since midnight and had the baby four hours ago. She decided she didn’t need her mother with her. She is still upset that George and Ron were teasing her and didn’t want them around.”
The grin fell off George’s face. “What did I do?”
“I told you that you went too far,” Angelina said. “You two were rather cruel at her shower and downright mean when she had false labour.”
Fleur spoke up. “I agree. She cried both times. Harry was rather furious, she talked him out of saying anything because she was afraid you would try to top the teasing when she actually had the baby.”
Molly sniffed. “I think she’s just being overly sensitive. I’m not sure when the rest of you will be allowed to see the baby.”
Several minutes later, Harry headed out to the waiting room to see if things had calmed down. To his relief it was much quieter. “Ron, Hermione, do you want to come meet your godson?”
Bill opened the door just as Harry arrived. “I don’t want it to be too crowded.”
“Thanks,” Harry said gratefully. He led his two oldest friends into the birthing room.
Ginny smiled as they walked in. “Ron! Hermione!”
Walking over to his sister’s bed, Ron said, “I’m really sorry if we hurt your feelings. We didn’t mean to.”
“I know,” Ginny said, “it just…it was a bit much.”
Ron nodded. Ginny gestured to the baby who was now back in Harry’s arms. “Do you want to meet your godson?”
With a grin, Harry slipped the baby into Ron’s arms. Ron smiled down at the baby. “He looks a lot like you.”
“It’s just the hair,” Harry said. “We’ll see as he grows, he might look more like Ginny.”
“He’s so small.”
“He is a bit on the small side,” Ginny piped up. “He weighed six pounds seven ounces.”
“He seems a lot smaller than Freddy. I guess he’s not smaller than Torie.”
“What did you decide for the name?” Hermione asked.
“James Sirius,” Harry said with a proud smile.
“That’s a good name,” Hermione said with a knowing smile as she accepted the baby from her fiancé.
“You might as well let the rest of them in,” Ginny said.
“Are you sure?”
She nodded as soon the room was overflowing with Weasleys. Ginny basked in the love of her family. George also apologized and was soon telling more appropriate jokes. He seemed a bit upset to discover that not only had Ginny not used any hexes on Harry, but Harry didn’t pass out or embarrass himself.
Arthur kept an eye on the proceedings and chivvied them out when Ginny started drooping. After everyone hugged, kissed them, and hurried out the door, Ginny settled back against her pillows. Harry smiled at her and leaned over to kiss her. “You are brilliant.”
She flushed with pleasure and looked over at the baby sleeping in the bassinet. “I can’t believe he’s really here.”
Harry watched over the two of them as they both drifted off to sleep. Although he’d had very little sleep over the past two days, he felt strangely energized. Letting the nurse know he was leaving, Harry headed down to the lobby. He used the Apparition Point to Apparate to Godric’s Hollow.
He arrived outside his parents’ former house. Over the past two years, he and Ginny had restored and enlarged the little cottage. His former nursery had been turned into a corridor leading to the new section of the house. While he normally wasn’t superstitious, he didn’t feel right about putting a baby down to sleep in the room where his mother gave her life for him. There were plenty of pictures of his parents and godfather scattered throughout the house along with pictures of the Weasley family.
Jogging upstairs, he looked into James’ nursery. He and Ginny had decorated it with care. They’d used a Quidditch theme echoing the theme his parents had used so many years ago. One of the items that had been salvaged from his nursery was a silver cup with his name engraved on the front with both a wand and broomstick etched on the sides. Ginny had tracked down an identical cup that they’d had engraved with James’ name with a stag and dog etched into the sides honouring the two men after whom James was named.
The walls had been painted a soft yellow with Quidditch scenes painted on them. The toy broom Sirius had given Harry for his first birthday was hanging on the wall. The wardrobe was filled with outfits. Harry didn’t think there was any way that James would be able to wear all of them, but he had to admit he also contributed to the collection.
Surprisingly, he had a small feeling of sympathy for his aunt and uncle. It would be so easy to spoil little James. Walking by a toy store, he wanted to practically empty it, but he’d listened to Ginny’s wise counsel. They’d chosen a few toys that were just waiting for James to come home.
The public had sent James mountains full of toys which he and Ginny had donated to several childrens’ hospitals as well as two orphanages. It still amazed him that so many people were interested in what happened in his life.
After making sure everything was clean and ready for James and Ginny when they were ready to come home, he left the house and headed down the street towards St Jerome’s graveyard. Pushing open the gate, he made his way over to his parents’ graves. He’d had a stone added for Sirius so he could visit all three at the same time.
“He’s here,” Harry said with his voice cracking. “James Sirius Potter was born around four this afternoon. He’s brilliant. I really wish the three of you were here to meet him. I know Ginny will want to bring him around in a few weeks, but I wanted to let you know. He’s got black hair like us, Dad. I hope he has Ginny’s beautiful eyes, but she tells me it will be a while before his eye colour is set.”
Using his wand, he cleaned off the grave sites. He conjured up a bouquet of roses as he’d been told they were his mother’s favourite flowers. Setting them in front of the grave, he reached out and touched her name before turning to leave.
It only took him ten minutes to return to Ginny’s room. He was happy to see that they were both still asleep. Smiling, he watched them sleep. As his eyes grew heavy, he reflected that he now had the one thing he’d always wanted — a family of his own. He’d borrowed the Weasleys for many years and of course he and Ginny had started their own family when they married, but the addition of James made it seem more complete. They certainly wanted more children, but James had made them parents. With a smile, he drifted off to sleep for the first time as a father.
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