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Chapter 3: Chapter 3: All My Loving
I’ll write home everyday
And I’ll send all my lovin’ to you…”
Two days before the holiday break Harry received an owl from Mrs. Weasley.
Sorry for the short notice, but I just received a letter from Ron’s
great Aunt Gertrude that our family will be gathering over the
holidays. Unfortunately accommodations are limited or we would
have been more than happy to bring you with us.
We’ll be back just before New Years and will send for you
the second we get home.
I’m so sorry.
Hope you still have a pleasant holiday and we’ll
See you before the New Year.
Harry read the letter three times before he fully accepting what Mrs. Weasley was saying. It wouldn’t be the first time he had spent the holidays at Hogwarts, but he had been looking forward to spending Christmas with Ginny. He looked up and saw her scribbling furiously on the back on the letter she had just received. Obviously, Mrs. Weasley had written her children as well to let them know about the change of plans. Harry read the note one last time and looked up when he heard Ron groan.
“Great Aunt Gertrude. I’d rather stay here, hell, I’d rather spend Christmas with Snape!” he exclaimed.
“What’s the matter with your Aunt Gertrude?” Harry asked trying to hide his disappointment.
“She’s one hundred and two, and she pinches my cheeks, and… and… she smells funny!” Ron told him flapping his arms wildly.
Ginny didn’t say a word as she fastened her letter to the spotted owl that sat patiently in front of her.
“At least we’ll have New Years.” Harry whispered to her as they left the Great Hall.
Ginny leaned her head against his shoulder as they walked.
“There’s no Quidditch practice tonight.” She said quietly, “If we don’t have too much homework maybe we can spend some time together before exams start.”
“That would be nice.” Harry agreed. “If you’re not in the common room after dinner I’ll come find you.”
Ginny winked as she let go of his arm, “You know where I’ll be.”
Then glancing at her watch she let out a squeak, gave Harry a quick parting kiss and took off running for her first class of the day.
Harry was still smiling when Ron and Hermione fell in step with him.
“Been snogging my sister again have you.” Ron teased as they walked.
“Oh don’t tease him Ron.” Hermione chided before Harry could respond, “It’s too early.”
Harry shook his head, the grin still plastered across his face. For the first time in a long time his life was utterly normal.
That night Harry met Ginny in their usual classroom on the third floor. It was dusty and drafty, but no one ever came up there and it was the only place they knew they could have total privacy. She was sitting on an old oak desk when Harry entered the room.
“I was starting to think you we’re coming.” She said quietly as he crossed to her.
“Sorry, I got caught up refereeing Ron and Hermione.” Harry told Ginny as he trapped her against the desk.
“They really should just snog and get it over with.” She laughed, “And speaking of snogging…”
Ginny’s strong fingers wound their way into Harry’s thick black hair as she pulled him closer and pressed her lips to his. Harry’s arms automatically came around her, pulling her tight against him. He reviled in the feeling of her strong, lean body pressed against him and found himself wondering if the rest of her skin was as soft as her hands, as soft as her neck.
“I should go.” He choked out when she ran her hand down his back making him shiver.
“I should…” but he couldn’t bring himself to pull away from her, not yet, and giving into her soft lips Harry dove back in for another kiss. When he found his hands dancing around the hem of her shirt he pulled back.
“I have to go.” He gasped, his eyes slightly blurry. “I have to go before… before I can’t.”
Harry kissed her once more then turned away and nearly sprinted from the room leaving Ginny gasping and trembling on the old oak desk.
Harry walked blindly down the hallway and nearly ran headfirst into Luna when he reached the second floor.
“Harry? Are you all right?” She asked, her voice concerned. “You look like you’ve been wrestling with a Pink Fardadid!”
Harry didn’t have the energy to laugh or to ask what exactly a Pink Fardadid was or why he would wrestle one.
“I’m fine Luna. Thanks. Just a bit warm that’s all. I’ll catch you later on.” Harry said very quickly then disappeared around a corner and down another flight of stairs.
He didn’t stop till he burst through the doors and out into the cold. There was a light mist falling and Harry stood in it for a moment, eye closed, face skyward, thankful for the blessed cool. He swore that if he opened his eyes he would see steam rising from his over heated body. This wasn’t the first time he had gotten worked up during a snogging session with Ginny, but it pained him to admit that it was the first time he had seriously considered letting things go further.
Harry felt bad about leaving Ginny alone in that dusty room, he had seen her trembling when he had pulled away from her, but if he had stay with her once minute longer, had touched her one more time, his resolve would have crumbled.
Harry ran his fingers through his now wet hair and began to walk. Though the air was frigged he could still feel the heat pumping off of him and Harry found himself nearly to Hagrid’s hut by the time he had cooled down. It’s been a while since I’ve stopped in for a visit. Harry thought to himself as he turned towards the thatch roofed house.
“’Arry!” Hagrid greeted him when he knocked on the oversized wooden door. “Don’t think I’ve seen you all term. But you’ve been busy I know, come in…. ‘arry you’re soaked! What are you doing walking around in this weather?”
“Needed some air that’s all.” Harry said as he accepted the oversized towel Hagrid had tossed to him, “Thanks.”
“So what brings you my way?” Hagrid asked as he poured them each a large mug of strong tea.
“Nothing particular.” Harry shrugged, “Just thought I’d stop by for a visit.”
They drank in comfortable silence for a while before Hagrid told Harry about a new bred of slug he’d like to get his hands on for the gardens. It was well past dark when Harry realized that he should have been back to the castle quite a while ago. He said a quick goodbye to Hagrid, promising to visit again before holiday break, then rain though the now pouring rain back to the castle.
By the time Harry reached the common room he was shivering, and his skin had a pale blue tinge to it.
“Harry! Where have you been?” Hermione squealed as she launched herself at him.
“W-w-w-walking.” Harry answered through chattering teeth.
“What were you thinking?” Hermione chided as she dragged him towards the fireplace. “Ron, go get Harry a towel and dry cloths.” she demanded.
Ron glanced at his friend who stood shivering and dripping in front of the fireplace and sprinted up the stairs. Moments later he returned with a thick towel in one hand and Harry’s pajamas in the other. Gratefully Harry took the towel and cloths from Ron and disappeared into the small bathroom connected to the back of the common room. When he returned Hermione had set up a thick blanket next to the fire place for him and stood expectantly, waiting for him to sit so she could hand him the steaming mug she held.
Harry sighed as he wrapped himself in the blanket and took the mug, and waited for the onslaught of questions he knew were coming. When the questions didn’t come Harry looked around. Hermione was laying his wet cloths out by the fire while Ron watched from the floor beside Harry. When she was done she sat beside Harry and conjured herself a steaming mug much like the one she had handed him moments before. Realizing that he was not about to be interrogated Harry sipped his drink and was pleasantly surprised to find that rather than tea she had given him hot spiced cider. Ron was also sipping from a thick mug and Harry couldn’t help but be impressed.
”When did you learn this one Hermione?” he asked as he took another sip. “I can barely manage a week tea, but this is delicious.”
Hermione smiled. “It’s one of my favorites. And I figure we have tea all the time, this seemed a little more festive for the upcoming holidays.”
They sat quietly sipping their cider until Harry began to yawn. Taking their mugs Hermione ushered the boys off to bed. Harry was still smiling when he closed his eyes. Over all it had been a very pleasant day, he thought to himself as he drifted into sleep.
The last three weeks of the term flew as quickly as the first half had in a flurry of exams, last minute homework assignments and Quidditch practices. Two weeks before Christmas a long piece of parchment appeared on the common room wall where the sign up sheet for those staying at Hogwarts for the holidays usually hung.
Hogwarts will be undergoing a bicentennial cleaning
during the winter holidays.
All students must leave the premise during this time.
Dormitories will reopen on January second.
Professor Minerva McGonagall
Harry frowned. It looked like for the first time since he had started going to Hogwarts he would be going back to the Dursley’s for the holidays.
It was snowing as Harry, Ron, Hermione and Ginny walked down to Hogsmead station.
“I’m going to be so bored.” Ginny complained as they walked. “I wish mum could have found a way for you to come with us Harry.”
“For once I agree.” Ron called over his shoulder to his sister.
The platform was crowded with students waiting for the Hogwarts Express to start loading and Harry found himself being tugged into a dark corner by Ginny. He leaned casually against the wall and she pressed her body against his.
“I’m going to miss you.” She said quietly as she landed a soft kiss on his neck. “Will you write to me? I know it’s only a few weeks, but knowing there’s a letter coming from you will make it bearable.”
“Every day.” Harry promised as he kissed her back.
Ginny smiled, “We should get going, they’re starting to board.”
She kissed Harry soundly one more time, then took his hand and lead him to the train.
A/N: Lyrics from All My Loving by The Beatles