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Chapter 7: Chapter 7 - Birthdays at the Burrow
A/N: Once again - I own the plot.......everything else belongs to J.K. Rowling
Ginny set Evan into the carrier she had slung around her and adjusted it so he was snuggled in tight. She waited patiently as he settled and sighed contentedly against her. Sighing herself, she moved over the mirror and ran a brush through her long red hair, the brush snagging slightly in the tangles that seemed to exist whenever she left her hair loose around her shoulders. Once it was smooth, she decided it would be safest to keep it back, so she worked it into a quick braid and gave herself a once over. She noticed the dark smudges under her eyes, a direct result of Evan not wanting anyone but his Mum to comfort him. It had thrown Harry for a loop the first time he couldn’t get his youngest settled. She could tell that it was bothering him, despite her promise that eventually this phase would pass. She hoped it would pass soon as the past three weeks had been exhausting for her and frustrating for Harry.
Looking down at her sleeping son, she stroked her finger down his tiny nose. “You need to start letting Daddy help you know.” Hearing a crash from downstairs, she rolled her eyes and looked at the door. “Time to go.”
Making her way downstairs, she peeked around the corner to find her husband and oldest son in front of the fireplace in the sitting room. James was sitting on the floor and was refusing to finish getting ready. Harry was trying to keep his patience but from the way he was gripping the small shoe in his hand, but Ginny could see he was losing the battle.
“James you need to finish putting on your shoes. We’re already late for your uncle's birthday celebration.” He said as calmly as he could.
“NO! I don’t want to! I want MUMMY!!” He yelled back as he crossed his arms in defiance.
Praying to Merlin that this little melee wouldn’t wake Evan and make them even tardier than they were, Ginny came around the corner. Walking over to stand next to Harry, she put a hand on the sleeve of his jumper. When he looked down at her with an exasperated expression furrowing his brow, she squeezed his arm.
“What is all the shouting and yelling for?” She asked, looking from husband to son.
“I don’t want to go Mummy. I want to stay here.” James responded, throwing his arms around her legs. A glance at Harry rewarded her with nothing but a shrug of the shoulders and a shake of his head.
Running her fingers through his unruly hair, she felt his fingers gather at the edge of her jumper to rub the fabric between his fingers. “Why don’t you want to go Quidditch-Bug? The whole family will be there and you love seeing Granmum and Grampie.”
“No I don’t.” He said, shaking his head against her leg.
Sighing, she knew this wouldn’t be resolved quickly. Easing the baby out of the carrier, she unhooked it and handed it to Harry. “Take Evan over to the Burrow, if he gets fussy and won’t settle just let Mum take him. James and I will be over in a few minutes.”
Harry looked at her with doubt in his eyes. “Ginny, you know he’ll be fussy the minute he can’t sense you within ten feet of him.”
“I know – but he’s been fed and changed so I’m hoping he will be fine. And it won’t hurt him to be fussy for a few minutes. Tell everyone that James and I will be along shortly.” Waiting for him to sling the carrier around him, she set Evan into it gently and snuggled it against Harry’s chest. “Just be sure to cradle him when you go through the floo and he should be okay.” Lifting the diaper bag, she hooked it over his shoulder before placing a kiss on his lips. “We’ll see you in a few.”
She watched while a worried Harry stepped into the fireplace and threw the powder down. In a flare of green flames, the two disappeared. Once they were alone, she quietly moved to the overstuffed maroon chair that was closest to her and James and gathered him into her lap. As he settled against her, she caught a whiff of his smell, a combination of fresh soap and little boy as it wafted through her nose.
“Now, do you want to tell me why you don’t want to visit the Burrow today? Fred and George will miss you if you’re not there to help them eat their cake.” She waited for an answer and could feel him mumble against her side. “Pardon?” She asked.
“I said they won’t miss me.” James pouted, refusing to lift his head from where he nestled against her.
“Oh James! Why do you think that?” She said, already fearing she knew the answer.
“Because everyone only cares about babies now - I’m invible!” He answered, his bottom lip jutting out as his eyes filled with tears.
Pulling him closer in a hug, she kissed the top of his head. “Quidditch-Bug! You aren’t invisible!”
“Yes I am. You and Daddy always take care of Evan and when Granmum was here, she didn’t even give me a hug. All she wanted to do was snuggle with Evan. I hate babies. And when Uncle Ron and Aunt Mione visit the twins always come and all they do is cry.”
Ginny let him get the words out and thought about how this must have been exactly how her brothers had felt each time a new sibling had made it’s arrival at the Burrow. Feeling her heart twinge when his warm tears soaked through her jumper, she stroked his back in slow circles.
“Darling, I still love you as much as I ever have. Daddy too – I think we’d be very sad if you were invisible. We have to take care of Evan because he’s so small. And I’m not sure why the twins are so fussy. I think it’s just they way they are. And I bet that the first thing Granmum will do when she sees you is squeeze you in the biggest hug you’ve ever had.” Kissing him again, she wiped away the tears from his cheeks.
“Really?” He asked hopefully.
Ginny smiled and hugged him tightly once more. “I think so. And - I think she might have even made you a special treat just for you. Cauldron cakes I recall her saying. Of course if you still want to stay home, I’ll floo to Daddy and tell him to come home when Evan gets hungry.”
“No! I want to go. Fred and George will miss me. And Uncle Charlie too. I have a picture for him.” He replied, throwing his arms around her neck, he squeezed her tightly. “Love you Mummy.” Kissing her wetly on the cheek, he bounced off her lap.
“Love you too Quidditch-Bug.” She said, happy that his mood had changed. “Now let’s get your other shoe on and get going. I want to get there before the birthday dinner starts – you know they won’t leave much behind!”
James looked around the room. “Mummy – I think Daddy took my shoe with him.”
Harry glanced up as the fireplace across from him flared and waited as Ginny stepped through, James on her hip. Setting him down, she patted his bum and sent him off to the kitchen to find Molly.
“Everything okay now?” He asked quietly.
“Yes – except for James missing a shoe, everything is okay. He’s just feeling a bit neglected. Where is everyone? How is Evan? Where is Evan?” She asked, noting the lack of baby in his arms.
“Penelope has him. She snatched him up before I could even protest. He’s been fine so far. Everyone is scattered around the Burrow. Ron and Hermione are upstairs in Ron’s old room trying to get the girls to go down for a nap. Your Mum is in the kitchen with Fleur, Amie and Penelope, the rest of your brothers are out back on their broomsticks and your Dad is in his shed.” Reaching into his pocket, he pulled out James’ missing shoe to hold up to her. “I realized it was in my hand once I stepped through.”
Chuckling, she snuggled into his arms, and smiled when she felt his arms wind around her to pull her close. Closing her eyes, she enjoyed the moment. For in what seemed like forever, they were alone. No one was calling to her to ask for something, there was no baby fussing and demanding her attention and no one was interrupting them. Resting her head against his chest, she took a deep breath and sighed when she smelled lemon drops and what she could only describe as her Harry.
“How come you’re not out on a broom as well? It’s a beautiful day for it.” She commented, looking up at him.
“I thought I’d wait until you arrived - just in case we still had a cranky boy on our hands.” He answered returning her gaze and losing himself in her eyes. She didn’t look as tired today as she had over the past week. Happy for that he smiled at her and tugged at the neat braid she had pulled her hair into and his fingers itched to loosen it so he could dive into it. “And I’d be the odd man out up there. With Ron busy with the girls and all. Besides I think I’ve gotten the better end of the deal, being alone in here with you.” Cocking an eyebrow at her, he leaned down until his mouth was a breath away.
Anticipation built in Ginny as their lips neared and the noises of the house melted away. Leaning forward, she pressed her lips against his. For a few seconds it seemed there was no one in the tiny Burrow but the two of them. Then as quickly as it began, the kiss was interrupted.
“Oh there you are dear!” Ginny heard her mother say.
“Mummy! Can I go watch Uncle Charlie and Uncle Bill and Fred and George play quidditch? Daddy do you have my shoe?” James asked, tugging on edge of her jumper as he tried to nudge between them.
“Ginny! You’ve arrived!” Hermione called from the edge of the stairs.
“Hey Harry! Don’t you think two kids are enough for now?” An unseen twin joked.
Breaking apart at the commotion, she sighed and leaned her forehead against his. “And then it was over.” She whispered before leaving the quiet of his arms to join in.
Tucking Evan into the cradle that had been set up in her old room, Ginny made sure that the listening charms were in place before she slipped quietly out of the room. Feeling the doorknob click in her hand, she turned around and ran directly into Hermione. Holding a finger to her lips she motioned to the door. Nodding Hermione grabbed her hand and pulled her up the stairs to Ron’s old room.
“The twins just woke up.” She said as they approached the door. “Would you mind helping me change them? Then we can get back down to the party faster!”
Entering the room, they found both girls babbling to each other in the spare crib Molly kept in the attic for when her grandbabies came to visit.
“Hello my darlings!” Hermione called, smiling widely when the girls made excited noises at the sound of their mother’s voice.
“They’re in such good moods.” Ginny said, as she watched the other woman lift Lily out of the crib. The baby smiled a toothy grin as she reached out to grab a fistful of her mother’s hair.
Placing a kiss on the red ringlets that circled her head, she handed Lily to Ginny. “They usually are when they wake up from a nap.”
Settling the baby in her arms, Ginny braced herself for the sort of fussing Evan had taken to when someone other than his mum held him when he was awake. When that didn’t happen, she smiled down at the baby and kissed her cheek. “Oh I can’t wait until Evan gets to this stage. I love him dearly but I just want someone other than me to calm him.”
Lifting Molly from the crib, she placed an identical kiss on her curls. “Oh these two weren’t always like this. Don’t you remember Christmas? I swear I am still catching up on the sleep lost on that holiday.”
“Harry’s getting frustrated – he’s tried to deny it but he is.” Setting the baby down on the bed, she reached for a fresh nappy.
Sitting on the opposite corner, Hermione began to change Molly. “Surely you remember that James went through the same phase?” She asked pausing to press tickling kisses on her daughter’s feet. “Maybe we mums eventually forget about it after it passes, but I remember when Ron would try to pick him up and he would howl until he was blue. It took weeks to convince that it wasn’t a sign that he would be a rotten sod of a father.”
Ginny finished pinning the nappy on Lily and slipped her bottoms back on. Lifting her up Ginny kissed her and tickled her side to make her giggle. “I suppose you are right. He really didn’t like his Uncle Ron at first did he? Good thing that changed.”
“And soon enough Evan will like more people than just his Mum. I read somewhere that it has something to do with the separation from the womb.” Hermione finished with Molly and lifted her off the bed to settle her on her hip. Leaning over, she squeezed her little sister’s hand. “It will work out. These two are Daddy’s girls now. I’m in for trouble when they’re older.”
Laughing, Ginny stood. “You’re right Hermione. I’ve nothing to worry about. Now let’s get these girls downstairs to the party. Mum will be getting the cake ready soon.”
As they walked into the living room a small firework whizzed by Ginny’s ear before fizzing out in the corner, laughing she made her way over to Ron and set his daughter in his lap before squeezing in next to Harry. In the middle of the room the twins were tearing into their presents with the same gusto they showed each year. Pulling out a matching set of jumpers with the Weasley Wizarding Wheezes logo embroidered onto the front they immediately pulled them over their head.
“Thanks Mum!” Fred said, looking down at his chest.
“Brilliant! George commented, mimicking his brother’s actions.
“You’re welcome dears – your other jumpers looked rather tattered last time you were home.” Molly said warmly and smiled widely when they both jumped up and kissed her on the cheek.
“Be careful Mum – I can see the wheels turning in their heads from back here.” Charlie called from his perch at the edge of the fireplace. “Those two will have you knitting more of those jumpers for the store. You’ll be turned into a factory line.”
“Charles – dearest older brother –“ Fred said, a look of shock crossing his face.
“We would never exploit our mother in that way. Now where’s the cake?” George finished, rubbing his hands across his stomach.
Laughing, Molly rose to her feet. “In the kitchen, give me two minutes to set up the table.” She said, making her way out of the room.
When she was gone, the twins turned to Charlie. “Now Charlie, I am disappointed in you.” George started advancing on his older brother.
“You should know by now, we would wait at least a few weeks before we ask Mum how she did this!” Fred said as he too closed in.
Charlie laughed as they approached, backing himself against the wall. “One can’t predict anything with you two. Do you think you can actually take me down?” He asked, extending his arms in invitation.
The twins nodded as they crouched slightly before throwing themselves at him at the same time. As the three grown men fell onto the floor in a tangle of arms and legs the rest of the room began cheering and goading them on. From her spot beside Harry, Ginny took Charlie’s side and laughed loudly as he pinned one of the twins to the floor. Leaning into his side, she looked up at him.
“Do you think James and Evan will act like this when they’re older?” She asked quietly.
Harry glanced over at the scuffle to see James on the edge of the fray, cheering for all three of his uncles equally; his cheers of delight the loudest of all. Smiling down at her, he pulled her closer and kissed the top of her head. “With your brothers around I don’t think you have anything to worry about.”
A/N: And there you have it faithful readers - Chapter 7. A short interlude I know. But I decided we needed something slightly lighter. I can't have Ginny having bad dreams all of the time can I? I hope everyone enjoyed!