‘‘Mr Figg, you are a coward.’’ Ginny's voice was loud from above the roof where she was sitting, holding the broom in one hand. ‘’You duel even with your eyes closed, but don’t want to fly with me?’’ He smiled, denying and thinking about how crazy that woman was and gave him more trouble than all the Askaban prisoners combined. ‘’What if I get attacked from up here? You won't be able to protect me.’’
‘’Miss, I believe that few wizards will be able to hit someone on a broom.’’ He argued, ignoring the tightness in his stomach he felt at seeing her in the air like a bird.
''There is! That's a lie, because my father has seen a man fall dead from a broom.'' Ginny climbed up on the broom and flew across the sky like a lightning bolt, turning a blur of colors until she bent down and stood at the height of his head, laughing boldly and keeping her chin up in the best Ginny Weasley way he knew. ''You are afraid.''
''Madam, I will have to disagree with you.'' He wanted to laugh, a lot, but three of her brothers were around, and Henry would never let them think he wasn't doing his job right because he was distracting himself with that Greek goddess.
Henry knew very well who he was and where he came from.
''Disagree? Aren't you being too bold?’’ Ginny seemed to shine like gold, her hair on fire flying in the wind, and her freckles looking like constellations on her pink cheeks. ‘’But don’t worry, your secret is safe with me.’’ She whispered, before cutting the air again and climbing higher than everyone else.
It had been almost two years since he had seen her do that, in fact, that he had seen her do almost anything, but he never got used to it.
Whenever she laughed, or when she flew like a bird that was born for it, even when she just walked in silence in the gardens, seeming to work some crazy idea that would make him afraid of losing his job, Henry was touched. It was simply impossible, there was no way not to look at the freckles on the top of her nose that stood out when she got too much sun, or how she had an almost dangerous facility to escape from home.
Henry knew he had never met a woman like her.
Not that he had met many aristocratic women, but in general, Ginny was totally different.
She flew for a long time, laughed with her brothers, performed acrobatics that would leave her mother with her hair standing, and challenged Henry to fly with her, but soon gave up and returned to the heights, seeming to have fun like never before, smiling from ear to ear. Her skin becoming increasingly pink from the Sun.
For his part, Henry stood up, strolling around in order to think about some things that Robards had passed on to him last week, trying to recap each part - again - of the attack of two years ago, and of the letter - that never arrived in Ginny's hands - with horrible misspellings and threatening her with death. The person was very explicit about what he would do if he found her, and for a week, Henry had nightmares that, while sleeping, someone would be able to catch her and kill her. Sometimes it was almost three in the morning and he was walking around the house, looking for a potential killer, going to the garden, to the clearing nearby, and even to the roof. But there was never anyone.
The house was protected, very well protected, but it never hurt to have a look or two.
His mother, Arabella, would be extremely concerned if she knew that he was hunting a murderer with his bare hands, ignoring Robards' commands and doing his own patrol, even reading and rereading the letters and all the investigation, looking for any gap that he pointed out for the culprit.
She would die of worry if she imagined that he had gone to Yeovil alone, curious to the last hair, even if it didn't make much sense.
Later that evening, after her day of enjoying flying and playing with her brothers. Ginny finally landed and got off her broom and followed her mother to socialize, or as her mother called it 'women's time', and then having dinner.
Henry, after already having his dinner - wandered around the property, talking to the elves who worked in the house, and going to the greenhouse to take care of the plants that Ginny might have almost killed. Not that he was the one who was going to tell her that she sucked when it came to herbology, instead, he just took care of the damage and made sure that all the plants survived another day.
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‘’Henry!’’ Ginny called out, her voice very low. ''Where are you?''
‘’I’m here, miss.’’ He whispered too, the wand light off, but ensuring that Ginny wouldn’t trip over anything.
It had started a few months ago, when one of the men Mr Weasley tried to choose to marry his daughter, commented unpretentiously that every night on the 31st, at a specific time, you could see lights in the sky that came directly from the mansion where the Duke and Duchess lived. Ginny had barely endured anxiety trying to wait for the time, and as much as she hadn't told Henry about it, he knew she would try to escape.
That's how he became an accomplice to her escapes, almost every night - because he would never let her escape at night alone.
‘’I don’t understand why you’re taking risks like that.’’ She spoke as soon as they left the house, walking under the effect of protective disillusionment, following the same path as always.
‘’Mis s, I would never let you do this alone.’’ Sometimes he thought she didn’t know him, even though he had been working there for almost two years.
‘’Is there any danger even at 1 am?’’ She spoke, and Henry abstained from answering a question like that. It was obvious that there was danger even at one in the morning, in fact, he thought there was even more.
After leaving the safe perimeter of the Weasleys' home, Henry extended his arm to Ginny, apparating them sideways to the park where they always went, not wanting to pay much attention to the fact that she always held him tightly and that the feeling was simply overwhelming.
‘’How do they do it?’’ She questioned him, sitting on the bench in front of the water channel and looking up at the sky that glowed towards the west.
‘’I have no idea.’’ He admitted, looking at the golden lights that cut across the little starry sky, feeling a little suffocated, even if they were outdoors. This sensation always scratched his lungs, and he thought it was because of his protective sense, which made him anxious about the idea of being up at dawn, taking a Viscount's daughter for a stroll on the sly. He was risking his job on a whim of that red-haired goddess, who he would never be able to say no to.
‘’When I was a little girl, my mother told me this story of two souls who were intertwined together, and who met, no matter what the circumstances were.’’ Henry looked at Ginny, curious about she was talking about Soul-bonding. Ginny continued; ‘‘I think she was hoping that her words would make the Duke’s son return."
‘’But you never believed!?’’ He questioned, knowing the answer. Happy to be able to treat her so personally now that they were alone. Her smile was always so beautiful when she realized he was doing it.
‘’No. Bonded souls? It sounds silly... I think that, apart from the dukes, nobody ever believed that the boy would return.’’ She looked at him, her brown eyes reflecting the golden lights in an inexplicably beautiful way. ‘’I once heard my father saying that Mr Potter had gone crazy since his son disappeared. Father said that he never left the castle, not attending any social gatherings, except for important meetings. And Mrs. Potter is no longer seen at afternoon teas, or even at events. Only the most special ones where she is required.’’. She shrugged. ‘’Myself, I think I’ve seen her less than five times in my entire life.’’
Henry was unable to give his opinion, the only time the Duke was at Ottery St. Catchpole, it was on a day that he was accompanying Ginny on a boring walk through the center, where she and Mrs. Weasley were looking for a new fabric for a dress. So, apart from photos that were here and there in the newspaper, he was never in the presence of the Duke or seen him.
And he would hardly be, to be honest, Henry was exorbitantly lower than the Potter family.