WILL HE RETURN?
CHAPTER II: Helplessly Hopeless
“Ginny, dear, eat something please!” mum said bringing me back to reality.
“I’m not hungry,” I answered staring the floor.
“Oh dear! You haven’t touched your toast...I don’t want you to be sick!” she said sounding worried.
“Come on little sister,” said George. “You don’t want to starve before going back to Hogwarts!”
“Hogwarts?! Going back to Hogwarts?!” I shouted at him. “How can they let us go back when there’s a war going on?” I asked mom fiercely.
“Well, they decided that if any student wants to return they’ll remain open” she answered apprehensively. I was sure she didn’t want me to return to Hogwarts.
“I think it’s a good idea, Gin,” said Fred. “You should go back to school, distract yourself, hang out with your friends...I dunno, you don’t have pressure from the O.W.L.s now,” he offered.
I didn’t answer him; I didn’t know what to say. Since we said Good-Bye to Dumbledore, I never thought of going back to school; I thought it would close or that nobody would want to go back. Most importantly, I thought parents would not let their children return. I still think it’s the safest place, but many others didn’t agree and I suddenly saw their point of view.
“I don’t know,” I answered after a while “I think you’re right,” I said looking at Fred. I thought about what he said; “I would like to see my friends again, study, and play Quidditch…but on the other hand…" I thought more and then faced my mum “I don’t want to leave you alone...I don’t want to go and make worry, more than you already do,” I said moving beside her and hugging her. She looked at me with tears in her eyes and said, “My dear, it’s ok if you want to go, I’ll be ok,” she said hugging me tightly. “Besides, I won’t be alone. Fleur’s staying while Bill’s...at work.” She always took to saying my brothers were at work rather than that they were helping in the war; I think it made her feel better.
“I have decided it, mom, I’m staying,” I assured her stepping back. “If we have to wait for...anything we’re waiting for, we’ll wait together,” I said apprehensively. I wasn’t sure what to wait for now; I just knew that whatever we were waiting for, it would be a long time before we knew what it was.
“Oh dear!” she cried and held me again in a tight hug.
July 31th, Harry’s birthday.
I spent almost the whole summer trying to find something special for Harry. I didn’t have enough money to buy him anything as expensive as broom, but I thought I could come up with something he would actually like. I tried to ask Ron what Harry like, but he Ron said that as long as it wasn’t something pink and girlie he’d like it. You’re not helping Ron! I thought. Then I asked Hermione, but she was no help either; she told me anything I got him he’d love. I had no idea what to do. I finally had an epiphany on my own merit.
Back on my 15th birthday, dad knocked my door very early in the morning, carrying a small black box. I looked at it suspiciously but before I could ask what it was, he opened it.
“These belonged to your grandfather,” he said showing me the two silver rings that were in the box. “He gave them to me, and I was supposed to give them to my first child to get married, but since you’re the only girl, I thought it would be better if I give them to you,” he said handing me the small box. He explained that the rings were supposed to unit the couple; to set a kind of connection between those who wear them, so nothing could separate them.
How could I be so stupid? That was just perfect!
Yeah, perfect, if he just could be there with me, but he wasn’t. I couldn’t send him a letter either; I didn’t know where he was, and Errol wasn’t smart enough to find him. I wished I had Hedwig as she would have been sure to find him.
August passed quickly and before I knew it, it was my sixteenth birthday. Mum tried to lighten my mood by baking me a huge birthday cake, but I was not in the mood for celebrations; nobody was there except for mum and Fleur.
Dad was always working at the Ministry. Fred and George decided to take a holiday, so they closed shop temporarily and helped dad in any way he needed. Bill didn’t return to Egypt, of course, but he kept helping dad at work, despite Fluer’s and mum’s protests. Charlie helped the best he could from Romania, but he couldn’t leave until he’d found a trustworthy and credible Dragon keeper.
Percy barely spoke to dad when they bumped into one another at the Ministry. I overheard Dad tell mum one night that Percy’s pride kept him from apologizing and rejoining the family. I hoped he truly regretted placing the Ministry before his family and would eventually come round.
Everyday, when dad arrived home, mum looked at him expectant and anxious, but he would shake his head and they both seemed even more sad and disappointed. I didn’t know if I could stand it much longer. Dad and my brothers hardly said a word when they were home; mainly they came and went with barely a hello or goodbye.
On a particularly warm evening in August, a few days before the start of term, mum asked yet again whether or not I wanted to return to school. I told her no having already made my decision; I was staying. I didn’t want to leave her and I needed to know straight away if anything bad happened.
September arrived with more of a chill than usual, but maybe it was just a sign of what was to come.
September flew by just as quickly as August had without any news. I never knew if any of my friends returned to school, or what happened to them. Each day was helpless; our anxiety and worry increased. Fleur, mum, and I sat at the kitchen, unable to think of anything to do or say. Mum cooked dinner at the same time, but dad and the others were always late and it grew cold.
The only thing left to do was wait. For what we didn’t know, but we felt better knowing we were facing it together.