Chapter 17 : Chapter 17: Past The Present
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“Who won?” Tom Riddle asked her from the pages of his journal.
“We did but Harry broke his arm. I felt so terrible about it! One of the Bludgers would not stop chasing him and then Lockhart attempted to heal him and it removed all of the bones from his arm!” She had to swipe at the tears to keep them from falling on to the page.
There was a momentary pause before he replied. “Harry’s arm was broken?”
“Yes.” She wrote quickly. “He had to go to the hospital wing and he can’t leave until tomorrow morning when his arm is completely healed. I feel so horrible about it but he really is an amazing player. This is nothing like watching him practice. I’ve been sneaking out to watch the team sometimes. I told you about it a few weeks ago, didn’t I?”
“Yes, I remember. Tell me more, Ginny.”
“I want,” here she paused; unsure of what she really wanted to tell her friend.
His distinct handwriting came quickly and seemed to mar the clean page. “You know you can tell me anything. I won’t tell a soul about your secrets. I am your diary friend. I only want what is best for you.”
“I know. No one understands me like you do, Tom.” Ginny scratched at her chin, inadvertently smearing ink on herself. “I like Harry.” She finally wrote. “ I mean,” she added hastily. “I have a crush on him but not because he is Harry Potter!”
“Young love. Tell me more.” His words came at her quickly.
Ginny felt compelled to continue pour her heart out to her invisible comrade. “He is so wonderful and kind. He doesn’t treat me badly even though I’m his best friend’s little sister.” She paused to giggle before continuing to extol on Harry’s virtues. “He is really handsome too. I doubt that he will ever notice me. I’m quite plain, you know.”
“Yes. I have red hair and brown eyes and I’m very small. No one believes that I’m eleven. Many people have told me that I look too young to be at Hogwarts. I don’t look like the witches in the magazines. They are all so exotic and beautiful!”
“Beauty is not everything but you are right, red hair and brown eyes are not generally thought to be beautiful.” Tom’s careful script told her. “I don’t want to hurt your feelings but as your friend, I feel that I should be honest with you.”
Ginny felt tears start to run down her face. The truth was hard but she wanted to truth over her mother’s pallid attempts to assure her daughter that she was pretty and that she would grow to become a lovely woman. “I want honesty and not lies. A real friend would be honest with me and I know that you are my real friend.”
“I am.” Tom assured her. “I will be your friend for the rest of your life.”
“So what do you think I should do about Harry?” She asked him, desperate for any form of advice. “I really want for him to like me but maybe that would be impossible.”
“I don’t know Harry, so I can’t say that it would not happen but maybe it would be best to wait for a while since twelve year old boys are often not interested in girls.” He finally replied.
“So you don’t think he’ll like me back?”
Tom started to write quickly. “Probably not but you don’t need him. If he can’t look past your looks to see the nice person that you are then you are better off without him.”
“But I want to be with him! I want him to notice me and hold my hand and give me a hug and maybe even a kiss. You don’t think he’ll ever want to do that with me?” Ginny felt her heart constrict and noticed, belatedly, that her handwriting was becoming increasingly messier before it melted into the page. “This hurts so much.”
“I’m sure it does but we want to be honest, right?”
“Yes.” It was small but she managed to write it legibly despite the fact that the quill was quivering in her shaking hand.
“I have an idea of what we can do tonight, Ginny but it is time for you to let go.”
“What do you mean, Tom?”
“I mean that it is time to trust me. You do trust me, don’t you?” He asked her but his words were starting to blur.
“Yes. I trust you.” She managed to write before her world went black.
Ginny felt herself falling through the blackness until she gasped and opened her eyes. She was safe in her own bed and not about to attack Colin Creevey.
“Are you all right, Gin?” Harry’s arms came around her and pulled her body to his. “What was it?”
“Diary dream where I was talking to him.” She fought to hold on to the memories but they were slipping quickly away from her. “Damn… he was saying mean things to me but I trusted him and then he used me to attack Colin.”
Harry was quiet for a moment. “Mean things?” He probed cautiously.
“He…” She thought hard, trying to recall what he had said to her but it was mostly gone. “He just said that red hair was not beautiful… I think. I can’t really remember anymore.”
“Ginny, don’t repress it!” Harry moved her face up to his and kissed her softly. “We need to write it down before you forget everything.” He reached over for the parchment and quill and handed it to her. “I can write, if you don’t feel up to it.” He grasped her shaking hand.
“No, I want to write. I think it will help me recall more of the dream.” She wrote quickly but only managed to recall a few sentences worth of the dream. Part of her felt that she had forgotten more than just this dream but whatever was in her head was firmly locked out of her reach. “This is it.” She handed it to him and he read through it quickly.
When he looked up his eyes were haunted. “He really manipulated you.”
“Yes he did.” Something nagged at the back of her head but she could not quite grasp what it was. Sighing, she gave up. “This is a large part of why I want to get Malfoy.”
“I know you do but Ginny,” he reached up and cupped her face. “You are so beautiful and I love your hair. I don’t think it’s plain.”
It was on the tip of her tongue to refute what he said but she stopped and bit her lip. “I have been letting them control my life for too long.” She leaned over and kissed him. His mouth moved under her and for several minutes they explored each other’s mouths. Finally with a grin she pulled back but she could see the same desire that she felt reflected through his eyes. “Thank you.”
“For what?” His voice was gruff and he seemed to be breathing heavily.
“For the compliment and for being an amazing man.” She pushed his hair away from his face before gently tracing the lightning bolt scar that marred his otherwise smooth skin. It felt rough under her touch. “You did not even protest when I stopped our kiss.” She gazed down and studied his face.
Harry shrugged. “We agreed to go slowly and you wanted to stop. I am not going to push you into anything.”
One corner of her mouth was tugged upwards into a half smile. “You do know that some men would be whining right now about being led on, don’t you?”
“I’m not them and I love you. If you aren’t ready then we aren’t ready.” His voice was firm and sure. “I’m not even sure that I am ready yet. Since I’ve never done that… maybe we should wait until we are ready to get married.”
Ginny’s brow furrowed as different parts of her mind were arguing. She really wanted to marry him and start a family but she had a drive to catch Malfoy and she did not want to lose her focus on pursuing him. Then his words fully infiltrated her thoughts and she spoke without really thinking. “Can we wait until we are married?” She blinked as what she said replayed in her head.
“Yes, we can.” He agreed readily. “I am fine with whatever you want to do.”
“Good afternoon.” Jane’s smiling face greeted them as they walked into her office and took a seat. She closed to door and sat across from them. “How are you two today?”
“I am still having nightmares.” Ginny informed the Mind Healer.
“I see. Have you been keeping a log of them?” Jane asked and reached out silently for the stack of parchment that Ginny offered to her. She scanned them before stopping on the last page. “You dreamed about writing in the diary?”
“Yes but I can’t remember most of the dream.” She replied softly.
Jane read back through the dream before putting it down and looking up at Ginny. “I believe that this dream is very significant.”
“Could manipulating her through the diary result in low self-esteem?” Harry shifted in his seat as he asked the question. “Did Voldemort cause her to doubt herself and if he did, why can’t she remember it?” He took her hand and held it while they listened to the other woman.
“Yes, I do believe that this would be a major factor.” Jane pulled out her notes and sorted through them before handing them over to Ginny. “I want you to read through this and I think it will help you to understand your repressed memories.”
Ginny looked down at the parchment in front of her and began to read.
Ginny told me about her possession by Tom Riddle during her first year today. She is obviously still suffering from the experience but does not want to talk discuss it further than her telling me the actual story. She seems to feel that she has recovered sufficiently from it and although I respected her wish not to talk more on it, I am concerned that she may still have feelings of guilt over what happened. I will try to bring it up at a later point when she trusts me more. I am hopeful that I can convince her that she was not at fault.
Something that I have noticed and will have to look further into are repressed memories. Ginny seems to be repressing certain memories. When I ask her a question there are points when she will completely ignore my question. Other times she will not know the answer to a question that she should know the answer to. I have observed this on more than one occasion and although it does not seem to be getting worse, I am concerned that if she does not start opening up with her family that she will self-destruct. I am constantly amazed by the abilities that humans possess to save themselves but I am not sure that Ginny is exhibiting any instincts towards self-preservation. I can foresee her having a break down when everything that she hides builds up. Not only is Ginny lying to her family but she is also lying to herself.
When Ginny was finished she looked up at the Mind Healer through a haze of tears. “I don’t remember any of this!” She exclaimed through her frustration and anger.
“I would ask you about your relationship with Harry and if you wanted to move beyond friends and it was as if I had not even asked the question.” Jane explained gently. “Your eyes would blank out and you would not begin speaking again until I had moved on to another subject.” She studied Ginny and then went on. “That was not the only subject that you would ignore but that was the one I remembered most clearly.”
“Why? Why am I doing this?”
Harry tightened his arms around her. “This is probably my fault. You repressed the memory of when you heard me lie to Ron about my feelings for you. That is probably what started everything.”
“I guess but…” She turned to look back at Jane. “Why would I still be repressing things? That does not make any sense to me since Harry and I are together!”
“I can see several situations that you are repressing because they are extremely painful. I do not believe that you ever fully recovered from your experience with the diary. I also think that seeing so many people die has affected you.” Jane explained calmly. “I still believe that your dreams are caused by something outside of yourself but I am unsure of what that could be. I know that you both feel unhappy most of the time even though right now you should be experiencing joy at your new relationship.”
“We are both feeling badly but when we are together, the pain is less intense.” Harry explained. “We have been sleeping in the same bed for a while and that has kept the nightmares at bay, for me at least. I still have them but they are not as intense. Ginny’s dreams are still plaguing her nightly.”
“Interesting.” Jane made notes for a full minute before continuing. “I would like to be able to collaborate with your sister-in-law, Hermione. I believe that she and I can come up with a solution faster if we work together. Can I contact her about this?”
“I suppose so.” Ginny replied glumly. Suddenly she did not feel like talking about her dreams or love life anymore. They had to get back to work after the session and she wanted to go over their trip to Hogsmeade with Kingsley and pass on the information that Abe Dumbledore had given her. Ginny’s boss had been in a meeting the previous day when she, Harry and Ron had returned so she had not been debriefed yet. She also needed to make sure that she was caught up in her paperwork since her mother expected them for dinner on Sunday and she would not have an opportunity to work this weekend. Ginny was very thankful that it was Friday.
“Ginny?” Harry voice penetrated through her musings.
“Yes?” She gazed up at him expectantly.
His eyes clouded over. “You were repressing things again.” He finally admitted. “We were talking and you were not paying attention.”
She laughed and poked his stomach. “I was not repressing anything! I was thinking about having dinner with my family this weekend and all of the paperwork that we have waiting for us back at the Ministry.” Neither of them responded so she looked frantically over at Jane. “What?”
She took a deep breath before answering and it was clear from her tone that she was troubled. “I believe that this might be more serious than I previously thought.”
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