SIYE Time:0:41 on 24th July 2021

Autumn Trees
By londonxlove

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Category: Pre-OotP, Alternate Universe
Characters:Harry/Ginny, Harry/Ginny, Hermione Granger, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, Ron Weasley
Genres: Drama, Fluff, General, Romance
Warnings: Sexual Situations
Story is Complete
Rating: PG-13
Reviews: 7
Summary: There are actually no autumn trees mentioned in the story, but I explain at the very end why I chose this title. This is a one-shot fic. It takes place several days after Harry witnessed the death of Cedric Diggory, and he feels utterly alone. Since the third task, he's been sneaking out of the castle at night to take walks around the lake, to help clear his head. This is a story of a young red-headed girl who accompanies him on his last walk before the train ride home the next day. [I'm sorry for the lame summary, but the story is much better, I promise].
Hitcount: Story Total: 5188

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:
Please make sure to read the paragraph I put stars next to AFTER the story. It ruins the story if you read it first.

Also, reviews are greatly appreciated!



~The First Walk~

The end of the school year was near. The mild temperature of a June night swam around Harry Potter, as he walked along the chilly waters of the lake. He looked up at the sky; he had never seen so many stars before, the moon -- never bigger. He turned his head down; Cedric would be ashamed of him if he saw Harry acting this pathetic — hiding from everyone he saw, never talking, barely eating.

He couldn't go on like this. Something had to happen.

~The Second Walk~

Nothing had really changed. Once again, he had gone to bed early, no one dared try and stop him. Harry grabbed his Invisibility Cloak, ran back down the dormitory stairs, out the portrait hole, down many more stairs, and escaped through the entrance hall by using Sirius’s knife to unlock the door.

Once outside, he threw off the Invisibility Cloak and took a deep breath of the June air. It was another dark night, but every day and night became darker and darker, until it was like walking in an atmosphere of tar.

He took his usual trail around the lake, occasionally pausing to skip a rock on the cold surface of the lake.

Once, he lost it.

He threw himself into the icy, murky waters, intending to numb himself from the pain, and maybe then he would feel better.

But of course, it didn’t help at all. Disgusted with himself, Harry got out of the lake and trudged back up to the castle, not bothering to cast an air dry charm on his clothes.

~The Third Walk~

This time, as Harry took his usual walk, he tried to get his mind off of the terrible things that had recently occurred, by thinking of his personal life, specifically, his love life.

After seeing Cho with…Cedric…at the Yule ball, he had lost all interest in her. And although she could now be with him because Cedric was…well…not available, his feelings had changed once she had rejected him when he asked her, even if she really was sorry. It seemed to Harry that after his heart had been broken, it healed so that it formed something new; something that changed his perspective and opinions on what was good for him.

So what was good for him? he asked himself.

Somehow, a certain female redhead had occupied his thoughts lately, and he wasn’t talking about Mrs. Weasley.

At first, he didn’t recognize the sensation, as he hadn’t felt anything like it for Cho. And then, that night by the lake, it hit him like a ton of bricks.

He was in love with Ginny Weasley.

Whether she was his best mate’s little sister, the once-little girl he saved in the Chamber of Secrets, or just his schoolmate, Harry Potter was falling head-over-heels.

Something had to happen. It wasn’t like before, when he took that first walk by the lake. This was much greater than that. This was real.

~The Next Day~

"Gin," Harry whispered to her in the common room. It was only eight o'clock in the morning.

"Harry?" a surprised Ginny Weasley said as she turned around to face him. Seeing the intent look on his face, she added, "Harry, what is it? Is there something you want to talk about?"

He sighed. There were dark lines under his eyes. He hadn't slept since it happened. "Well, sort of. I just wanted to tell you that...well...I just wanted someone to talk to. I don't want to speak to Hermione or Ron, you know how they are. Hermione would just go into a worry overdrive and start asking ten questions per breath full. And Ron...well, of course you know Ron, he's your brother. He would try to lighten things up, but only make things worse." Ginny nodded; she had dealt with that too many times to count. "So," Harry continued, "I, er, just wanted to tell you, that every night since...well, you know...I've been taking walks around the lake, to clear my head and to just get away from it all. If you, er, want to join me, and we could just talk, I think it would make me feel better."

Ginny was silent for a few seconds; she was certainly taken aback that Harry would want to talk to her of all people, who was just his best mate's little sister.

Taking her silence as a bad thing, he hastily added, “It doesn’t have to be for long or anything, I just thought, well…”

Ginny smiled. "Sure Harry, are you going out tonight?" He nodded. "Well, alright then. I'm here for you always - you know that."

~The Last Walk~

"Hey you," a female voice belonging to a young red head whispered into the dark.

"Hey," a voice belonging to a teenage boy replied. "Thanks for coming tonight, Gin. It really means a lot to me.”

“Anytime, Harry.” she was silent for a minute or two. Then, “Has the moon always been so big?”

“It seems to get bigger every night, and there are more stars, too.” They continued the small talk as they walked around the lake, Ginny carefully avoiding the topic of the triwizard tournament. Harry noticed and greatly appreciated it.

“Harry, I think we should probably get back up to the castle. We’ve been out here for hours.” She turned to walk away, but Harry caught her arm.

“Ginny,” he said softly, as he stepped closer towards her, “thanks.”

She came closer towards him as well, their faces only inches apart. “I told you, Harry. It was no —” cutting off her sentence, he closed the gap between their lips. If anyone had seen them and known them, they would have described it as two pieces of a heart finally put together.

Their lips moved together as one, and it was deeper than any kiss either of them had experienced (well, it was the only kiss either of them had experienced). Ginny took off Harry’s glasses and ran her hands through his hair while he moved his arms up and down her back.

They stayed that way for a long while; time did not matter anymore.

Finally, they broke apart, both breathing heavily, and without saying a word, intertwined their fingers together and strode back up to the castle, side by side.

****To tell you the truth, this is somewhat of a true story. It was actually how my current boyfriend and I got together. In October of 2006, a member of my family died, and I was really close to him. See, my boyfriend (his name is Kris) and I have been neighbors ever since I was in the first grade (ironically enough, that’s when I first started reading Harry Potter). So after the death in the family, I started taking walks up the hill past his house, because there were a lot of trees up there whose leaves had turned beautiful colors. There was something about autumn trees that made me just feel calm and at peace. During those walks, I realized I had feelings for him. So one day, before I took my walk, I was talking to him online. I guess he could tell that I wasn’t in a good mood, so he asked what was wrong and I told him everything that had happened. He expressed his sincerest sympathies to me, and then I asked him if he wanted to wait for me at his house, so when I walked up his hill, he could join me in my walk. Well, he said yes because we were good friends at the time. So then everything unfolded from there, just like in the story, except our kiss wasn’t as passionate as I described Harry and Ginny having. Gotta throw in more romance for our hero and his girlfriend!****
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