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SIYE Time:1:50 on 4th December 2021


What Really Matters
By Bluest Witch

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Category: Post-DH/AB
Characters:Harry/Ginny
Genres: Comedy, Fluff, Humor
Warnings: Mild Language, Mild Sexual Situations, Negative Alcohol Use
Story is Complete
Rating: R
Reviews: 34
Summary: ¨What matters here is that you and I will get bonded for life, and we´ll get to share the moment with the people we love¨

This is the story of Harry and Ginny´s wedding, a spin-off from my first fic, That Look In Your Eyes. Fun, bantering, surprises and a lot of laughs.
Hitcount: Story Total: 14138; Chapter Total: 1455
Awards: View Trophy Room




Author's Notes:
Sorry for the delay! But good news, the story is now completed and corrected. I will upload chapters as soon as I have a little time, ideally one per week.
A million thanks to Arnel, my wonderful Beta.
We left Harry having cold feet… Will Ginny be able to calm him?
I must say that, perhaps because I'm Spanish, I don't put too much store in the Three Little Words, but apparently, in British culture, it's a very important thing. So I tried to fit it in the story the best I could.




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“And I had been crying, it was one of those awful days after the Battle, tired from rebuilding, exhausssted from funerals and grief…”

Ginny had to admire Hermione; after one cocktail and two Firewhisky shots, the only thing that denoted she was tipsy was some slight slur in the words. The girl she had witnessed swearing in front of a crowd seemed to have retreated back into her almost normal self. Now they were in her room at the Burrow, in their pyjamas, drinking shots from the bottle Luna had produced out of her bag, and she was talking again as if she was delivering a formal speech.

“…suddenly stopped combing my hair and said he had been looonging to do that since we were living in the other tent. That he used to watch me plaiting my hair and imagine himself doing it. Can you imagine how I felt? So of course, I had no choice but to turn around and shag him senseless.”

Okay, she’s still capable of swearing, thought Ginny, stifling the giggles with her hand. “All right, Granger, but no, I still can’t understand what’s up with the whole hair affair. Bet that even my brother couldn’t see that coming.”

“He didn’t,” agreed Hermione, chuckling. “But trust me, his ssshock didn’t last long, he r-roseto the occasion…”

“Urgh, Hermione, it’s my brother, spare me the details. I already figured by myself that he’s not a prat at everything and believe me, I’m happy for you. But again, hair?"

“Isn’t it evident, Ginny?” said Luna, who looked as serene and fresh as if all she had drunk was pumpkin juice. “Hermione usually complains about her hair, so it’s probably the part of her physical appearance she likes least. Also, she probably felt her body was nothing to be proud of, and was very conscious of it, because she’s fought all her life to be appreciated for her intelligence and not her body, so when Ron said that, she knew your brother liked her the way she was, bushy hair and all. And that turned her on.”

“Like a hot ssstove, that’s it, Luna,” declared Hermione, making Ginny laugh again. “You’re right. I thought I wasn’t special, I’m not beautiful like Lavender was, plus I had lost weight, my skin was scarred and still bruised. But Ron… when he t-touches me, I see in his eyes he doesn’t care, makes me feel special…”

“You two certainly can’t keep your hands off of each other for long, it’s disgusting, really. Poor Harry’s always complaining about how much he has had to put up with you two,” said Ginny.

“The way you say it, one could think we’re every moment at it, really, it’ss not that.” Ginny snorted. “We’re not! The way he usually stares at me is nothing sexual, it’s an amazed expression, as if he–”

“As if he couldn’t believe his luck,” finished Ginny for her, nodding. “Yeah, I’ve noticed. Like I said, he’s not always a prat. And somehow, it works. I’m really happy for you two, you know.”

“The four of you are very lucky; finding a match for a soul is not as easy as it was for you,” said a thoughtful Luna. “I don’t think my match is going to knock at my door; my heart keeps telling me I should travel abroad. Maybe it’s waiting for me in the jungle, or the Siberian steppes. Isn’t it exciting? I get to see the world and learn Magizoology in the meanwhile.”

“Of course, it is, if that’s what you want, Luna,” said Ginny, squeezing her hand. “Although I will always have a soft spot for you and Neville. Pity neither of you felt that way.”

“Oh, no, even if he wasn’t completely besotted with Hannah, it could never have worked. I’m not a match for him. I wasn’t one for Dean either, although for a while, at Hogwarts, we were good for each other. But we both knew it couldn’t last; I think that’s the reason he’s out on a gap year. Maybe he feels that his match is waiting for him out there, too.”

“I really hope so, Dean is a perfect good friend, but go anything further and you find yourself dealing with a cross between an octopus and a puppy dog. I don’t know how you put up with him, Luna. When we were going out, at first I found him very attentive and flattering. But soon it became unbearable, and nothing I said made him change. It was so different with Harry! He used to be like an oyster in his shell, and I’ve never have had to swat his hands away, quite the opposite, you know what I mean.” She winked at her friends and drank another shot.

“Oh, that’s why Dean and I were good for each other back then, we found sex to be the perfect way to escape stress and grief, and I did not mind his hands because he was really good with them. His mouth, too,” declared Luna matter-of-factly, like she was talking about the weather for tomorrow. Ginny sprayed the Firewhisky in surprise and Hermione fell on her back howling with laughter.

It’s always the quiet ones, she thought.“Well, ladies,” she announced, refilling the shot glasses with her wand; her hand was not very steady, due to the alcohol she had consumed. “I see the moment to tell dirty jokes and talk about sex, compulsory at every hen’s do, has come. So if you please, raise your shots and let’s have a toast for my sweet sister-in-law, who, like a good Frenchwoman, is everything but sweet in the bed, and has recently taught me a bunch of nice little charms to enhance such delightful activities, which I’m happy to share with you.”




oooOOOooo




“Shhh, be quiet, you sods…”

“I still say we should have gone upstairs.”

“Are you mad? My parents sleep in the first floor, too. Do you want to wake them?”

“We’ll be careful!”

“Like hell, we will. We have the same chance of being careful as a hungry troll in a kitchen. It’s a miracle they haven’t heard us arriving by Floo.”

“And how do you figure Harry’s going to be able to talk to her?”

“We’ll tell her to meet him out here, won’t we?”

“Oh, of course, it’s not as if yelling her name under her window is not going to wake your parents, Ron!”

“Are you a wizard or what? Just send up a Patronus! And you call yourself an Auror?”

“You don’t get to cast it– not now that I know what are you going to think about, eurgh.”

“Well, you don’t get to, either! You, Nev, think of the orchids, go.”

“Actually, poor things are dying, I try to focus on cacti instead…”

“Oh, please, Longbottom, just pick a damned pot and do it now.”

Neville scrunched his face in concentration, raised his wand and a silvery bear materialised in front of them. Neville whispered something is his ear and the animal gave a curt nod and silently ambled into the house. The three friends remained back, staring up at the lone lit window. No sound came from it; they should have Imperturbed it.

“What if they’re sleeping?”

“It doesn’t look like they are, lights are on–”

“Again, keep it down, do you want to wake up my parents?”

“Maybe if we get a broom from the shed, we can watch through the window, and check if they’re asleep.”

“My sister and my girlfriend are in that room, Longbottom, I’m not letting you see them in nightclothes–”

“Oh, shut up, you know that I–” But it was Neville who did shut up, because the window had been opened, revealing three heads wearing identical surprised expressions.

“Hi, girls,” said Ron cheerfully. “Thought we’d drop by, to say, um, hello.” He raised a hand. “Hi, sweetie-pie, you look gorgeous.”

“Yeah, and since we’re here, Harry had something to tell Ginny, so…” Neville said. Ginny made a shocked noise, and poked her head further out. “What do you want, Harry?”

“Hi, er, um… could you get down here? We don’t want to wake up your parents.”

“Yeah, wait a sec, better not go downstairs… Accio broom!” They heard a noise and from the direction of the shed, they saw a worn, old-looking broom zooming up to the window. Ginny’s head disappeared for a moment, only to show up again wearing a cloak and flying out of the room. She landed between the three men, tossed the broom to Ron and faced Harry.

“What’s up, lion?” Ron and Neville snickered, and Ginny made a rude gesture to them.

“Hey, that’s a poor way to treat us, after all we’ve done for your specky git. Who, by the way… Oi, you!” said Ron, cuffing Harry in the back of the neck. “Ask her and let’s get this done!”

But Harry felt like his tongue was tied up; whether from the alcohol or the vision of his fiance, or both, he didn’t know. He choked and let out a strangled noise.

Neville huffed impatiently. “Well, Ginny, you see, lover boy here seems to have got cold feet, for reasons we find utterly ridiculous, so we brought him here so you could sort it out between the two of you.”

Ginny turned to stare at Harry with wide open eyes. “Is it true?”

Harry shrugged and finally opened his mouth to croak “Do you… do you love me?”

Ginny’s jaw dropped open. “What kind of silly question is that? How can you–” She spun around to point an accusing finger to her brother and her friend. “Is this your fault? What sort of jiggery-pokery have you made him believe?”

“Oh, fabulous, kill the messenger, sis,” said an offended Ron. “We only said it wasn’t normal that you’d never told your fianc that you loved him.”

“Was it before or after Harry staring at the map to find her?”, asked Neville, scratching his head.

“I think it was after, no, before the snores–”

“Enough,” said Ginny furiously. She pulled out her wand. “Both of you, out. Take that broom and either go and join Hermione and Luna or get back to the flat, I don’t care. Just get out of my presence. You,” she said seizing Harry’s hand, “come with me.”

She dragged Harry to the orchard, towards the trees where they were going to celebrate the wedding ceremony; they looked formidable and old, and both had agreed that they really did not need anything more ornamental or elaborate. When they arrived under the trees, she released his hand and turned to face him, arms crossed.

“Now, explain.”




oooOOOooo




He was babbling. After coming out of his stupor, he had stammered some nonsense about speeches and then launched himself in a cascade of words– Ginny could only make out something about nightmares, motivations, rushing and requisites. It was annoying; she did not understand how they were interrelated. And now he seemed to be spiralling, spitting out things like doing it for the wrong reasons and we really don’t know each other or what if we end up regretting this. Every time Ginny tried to get a word in or make a point, she could not. It was evident that he was panicking more and more, and there were few things that could get him out of that state, so she went for tried and tested. Ginny steeled herself, grabbed his head between her hands, kissed him so fiercely that he had no choice but to stop talking, and snogged him until she felt his body beginning to relax.

Then, for good measure, she let her hand fall and squeezed his bum.

As expected, Harry jumped a little in surprise, and then immediately seemed to catch up to her intentions. He broke the kiss and looked down at her with a sheepish grin.

“You think I’m a fool, don’t you?”

“No, I think you’re acting like one, that’s not the same, happens to the best of us. And now tell me how much have you drank and what made you risk awakening my parents to talk to me so urgently.”

Harry scrunched his face and rubbed his eyes under the glasses. “Now that I am here with you, it really looks all a bit foolish.” He sighed. “All right, ‘spose it began with the speech. Nobody said I have to deliver one! And that’s not the worst of it… I’m supposed to… to joke and use sexual innuendos and reveal personal things and nothing they suggested would I dare use, and then Neville asked for the first time you said you loved me and I realised you hadn’t, and they acted like we were missing an essential piece and I couldn’t think straight, suddenly all seemed hurried, precipitated, wrong! And all the times I’ve fucked up something because I acted on impulse came to my mind, and how different things would’ve been if I had stopped to think! And then they pushed me through the Floo and here I am,” he said, staring at his feet and kicking a pebble.

Ginny gaped at him, her head spinning. “Okay, I don’t think I’ve entirely got it, but it looks like the main issue is the fact that I have never pronounced the three little words, isn’t it?” Despite her annoyance, she smirked at Harry, who nodded and resumed kicking pebbles. “Harry, please, look at me.”

He did as he was told, and she stared into his eyes; she saw desperation and, she could not believe it, but was it possible that he looked a little afraid?

“Harry, anybody can say ‘I love you’; I get told nearly daily by my parents, brothers and friends, and lately by you of course. Anyone can say those words.” She grinned and took his hands into hers. “That’s the reason I prefer to show it.” And leaning towards him, she kissed him again. They broke apart, and waited to see his reaction.

“You’re right, I’ve been stupid. It’s only that, I’ve also realised…” He shuffled nervously, and avoided her eyes. “It’s not something I’ve ever heard that much.”

And then it hit her. The epiphany was as if a heavy curtain had been vanished, revealing an embarrassed little boy trying to hide behind it. Of course, he had not heard it. His parents told him, for sure, but he was so young that he could not remember. The Dursleys would no sooner tell Harry that they loved him than volunteer to host the Ministry’s Hallowe’en party. And, she, his girlfriend, had carelessly neglected saying it just because she thought it was something outdated and unimportant.

Oh, for the love of sweet Godric. It’s me who’s been a total and utter fool, not him.

She sucked in a breath, shook her head, and pondered what to do next, but while not completely drunk, the alcohol she had ingested did not let her think with clarity. But that she could remedy. Rummaging in the pocket of the cloak, she pulled out two vials, uncorked one and drank it, then offered Harry the second. He accepted it, but did nothing but eye it with distrust. It was a mark of how much Ginny knew him, that she scoffed and said, “It’s ok, Harry. That’s Sobering Solution, brewed by Hermione Granger, former Head Girl, who can burn soup but make the finest potions, and I am your girlfriend, and I know exactly why you switched from treacle tart to chocolate gateau as your favourite dessert. In fact, that’s Hermione’s dose, she’s bound to have an awful morning tomorrow until she’s able to brew some more.”

“And why should I drink it?”, asked Harry.

“Because although I’m impressed by how your instincts are not completely dimmed by the booze, I want you to be completely conscious of the moment you’re just about to live.”

His eyes widened in surprise, and he wordlessly unstopped the vial and drank it in a single gulp, then tossed away the empty receptacle and stared unwaveringly to Ginny.

“Do you remember the first time you told me that you loved me?” asked Ginny softly.

Harry nodded. “Vividly; it was on your seventeenth.”

Ginny took his hands on hers. “And my answer?”

He nodded again. “That you were fond of me, too.” Harry let out a chuckle, but quickly got serious again, gazing at her with intensity.

“Well, that was a lie–” said Ginny determinedly. Harry looked like his heart had stopped beating, so she went on, “–because it was an understatement. For I loved you then, and I love you now, and I loved you all the months we weren’t together, even the ones when I actively tried and failed to forget you. I knew it when you ditched me after Dumbledore’s funeral, and in front of us lay a dark path neither one of us knew where would it lead. It’s ironic that now that we have upon us a much brighter perspective I still haven’t properly said how much do you mean to me. I’m sorry. I thought my actions alone would be enough. I certainly despised the power within these words: I love you, Harry.”

His smile lit up his entire face. Releasing her hands, he pulled her into his arms, sweeping her off her feet, and kissed her with urgency. They stumbled into a tree trunk and Harry knocked his head against a low branch. He swore and unintentionally dropped her. Ginny slipped and fell on her bum. “Ouch!”

“Are you ok?” asked Harry, rubbing his head where the branch had hit him and crouching down to help her. Ginny giggled. “I am now,” she said, and pulled him down on the grass, straddling him and resuming the snog, which Harry seemed only too happy to do. When they broke the kiss, they stared at each other and laughed at the same time.

“So much for big moments’ grandeur, we seem to be doomed to end up sprawled on the grass in most of them.”

“It’s all right, this is only us; no bloody Skeeter is going to write about it,” said Ginny, sitting up on the grass. She traced his cheek with her forefinger. Harry leaned into her hand, kissing the palm. She remembered something. “Harry?”

“Yeah?” He answered distractedly.

“What was all that about looking a map?”

“Oh, it’s nothing…” He tried to cover it, but she could feel the heat of his cheek in her fingers, so she put a finger under his chin to make him look up at her. Ginny cocked her head to the side. “Really?”

“Well, it’s silly, I hadn’t told anybody, but turns out that Ron had noticed, and he babbled in front of Nev. I used to stare at your dot in the Marauders’ Map while I was on watch in the tent, those months on the run. I wondered…”

“What was it?” she asked softly.

“Told you, it was silly… I wondered if somehow you would be able to sense it. Like I said, pathetic.”

“Not at all,” said Ginny, and she saw his eyes widening in surprise. “It was no more pathetic than me, thinking about you in my bed almost all the nights, wondering where would you be, and if you were thinking of me, too. At least you had a map and a dot to stare to. I had nothing but an Undesirable No.1 poster I nicked from the Entrance Hall. Who’s pathetic now?”

“It’s not a competition.”

“Yeah, better stick to Quidditch, no risk of being pathetic there.”

“No, unless it’s Ron failing to block a shot because he’s ogling Hermione.” And they burst out laughing.

“Talking of the devil, was my brother responsible of messing with your head? ‘Cos I’m definitely murdering him if it was.”

“No, let him be. He did say something about how the two of us would get to really know each other from tomorrow on, my snores and nightmares and all that, but he reckoned we had come through enough things, we had better chance of surviving coexistence. I think that’s when the alcohol made me panic…” He did not finish the sentence. She guessed why; he needed reassurance.

“You’re wondering if we’ve rushed into this without thinking.”

Harry shrugged. “I think it’s more like I wanted this so badly, I never stopped to think if we really should wait a bit longer.”

“Well, do you want to? Like I said this morning, we can simply let the fake plan become real.” She leaned back and pulled him up so she could sit in his lap; Harry cocked his head and grinned sheepishly.

“Truth is, I don’t. I don’t want to wait more. I really want to be married to you and get to know you better and do all the things we haven’t had the opportunity to. And it’s not all about sex like your brother suggested. I’m looking forward to waking up in the morning by your side, for instance. That is, if you don’t chuck me to the sofa because of my snores –or my dreams,” he chuckled.

“Unlikely: what’s Silencio for, then?”

“Yeah, we used to do that to Ron all the time at school.” They laughed together, then fell into silence. Eventually Ginny broke it. “This is not like the Department of Mysteries, Harry. It isn’t the spur of a moment; I meditated this a lot before proposing–”

“I didn’t, though.”

“True, but not every time you act on impulse turns out bad. On the contrary, you are notoriously good at it: you jumped on a dragon to flee from Gringotts and saved three lives including your own.” She smirked and pressed on. “The way I see it, it’s like a great adventure, and it will have its best and worst moments… but I want to do it anyway.”

“Neville reckons we should avoid sleeping on an argument.”

“Well, I plan to sleep on something much more agreeable,” she chortled. “I think that’s common, but rubbish advice, anyway. We’re both hotheaded people, chances are we would go to bed in the middle of many arguments. Let’s hope they will do for interesting reconciliations,” she said, winking at him.

“That’s certainly something worth hoping for.” He gazed at her with a hungry intensity, the kind of look that made her insides burn. But if there was a thing she definitely did not want tonight was hurriedly made sex, so she tried to distract him. “Want to know the latest of Luna’s theories? She believes the magic of the Bond will make our love eternal.”

Harry snickered. “Sounds like soap opera bullshit to me.”

“True, but Luna has been known to be right every once in a while… let’s say this is the case; that would mean our relationship is going to be really heightened from tomorrow on… intriguing thought, isn’t it?”

“Gin?”

“Yeah?”

“Any more heightened than I am now, and I will explode, believe me.”

Ginny glanced down at his lap at let out a giggle. “Cool down, Potter,” she said mischievously. “Do you remember what I said about keeping only the worthy traditions? It’s almost midnight.”

Harry raised an eyebrow. “It’s not an ungodly hour for sex.”

“No, but remember that the groom should not see his bride on the wedding day until the moment she walks down the aisle.” Harry’s head flopped back and a frustrated groan escaped his lips. Ginny got up, laughing, and gave him a hand to help him get on his feet.

“We don’t even know if there’ll be an aisle,” he protested, trying to kiss her.

“I’ll just tell people ‘here comes the bride, make way’ then,” she replied, ducking and giggling. “Come on, let’s find our accomplices so we can have a bit of beauty sleep. Look for me tomorrow: I’ll be the one in white.”

“Odds are there could be more than one woman in white: guests believe they’re attending a birthday party, not a wedding.”

Ginny spun round, a smile tugging on the corners of her lips. She stepped up and gave him a light, brief kiss. “Then make sure you’re marrying the right one.”


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