Time had no meaning. Life had no meaning. And apparently the ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign Ron had crudely taped onto the door had no meaning either; people had been knocking on the door all night to console a heartbroken Ron on the death of his girlfriend. (Even if they had broken up ten minutes before she died.) Ron sent them all away and just lay on his bed, refusing to cry or show any emotion at all, willing himself not to think of the horrible moment when he had found out, though the memory kept pushing it’s way back into his mind.
The fourth year students had been trudging across the snowy lawn to the greenhouses for Herbology. Ron had not seen Gabrielle all morning and was getting worried. Suddenly, Hannah Abbot let out a little yelp. She had spotted a figure lying on the lawn over by the base of the astronomy tower. Several students, excluding Ron, had walked over to investigate. Hannah slapped her hand over her mouth, the first to arrive. Gabrielle was laying on the ground, still in her dress, perfectly still, blood on her stomach and another pool of blood around her head. Her eyes were still open, but not in terror. Instead, they looked eerily…calm. Ernie Macmillan jogged over and saw the horrible sight next. He pulled Hannah into a hug and she cried on his shoulder. The three other students in the investigation party joined the couple and let out equally horrible expressions of shock. Ron had seen the reactions of the others and had followed, curious. He saw Gabrielle lying there; had stood frozen with shock. The five students had understood that he needed to be left alone. They backed away and had sent the other students to Herbology without an explanation. As soon as they were gone, Ron had begun to cry over his love’s dead corpse.
Ron sat up in bed. He had to do something. Anything. Anything except suicide, he told the little voice in his head. Ron nicked Harry’s invisibility cloak and, careful in the crowd of the common room, headed off the restricted section of the library.
Ron stalked through the library, eager and desperate for anything to help him, anything at all. He reached the ‘D’ section, and began to run down the aisle, searching for the word death. He saw it finally, but as he ran to grab the book, he came in contact with a painfully hard structure, an invisible barrier. When he opened his eyes, he was on the ground, his head throbbing from the blow to the ground. Cursing and pulling himself to his feet, Ron reached out to investigate the strange object. He reached forward to touch the invisible mass, but as he did so a silvery silky item slipped smoothly to the ground, unmasking the now visible unit. An invisibility cloak now sat at Ron’s feet, but he didn’t notice. Ron stood, horrorstruck and frozen, finding himself facing the Mirror of Erised, looking right at the face of a lost soul, the smiling glassy figure of Gabrielle standing behind him. Ron whipped around, but knew he would find nothing there. He was correct. Gabrielle’s face took on a concerned look, and her mirrored ghost took his hand in hers. She leaned over and gave him a kiss on the cheek and wiped away a tear in his eye. It was all so real, he could feel her touch, feel her stop his hand from shaking, dry his tear. And now she dropped his hand and was only in the mirror somehow, walking deep into its depths. She turned backwards and motioned with her hand for him to follow her. He looked confused until her arm -it really had to be her arm- emerged from the mirror itself and took his hand again, pulling him in. Ron stepped forward with her and she dropped his hand as he tentatively put his fingers into the now swirling foggy surface of the mirror.
“We could be so happy.” She whispered, before disappearing into the swirling fog that was the glass, and without another though, Ron allowed himself to be enveloped wholly by the mirror.
When Ron awoke he had a terrible throbbing headache. He tried with difficulty to sit up, and when he finally looked around, he saw that he was in the Gryffindor common room. The fire was crackling merrily and people were strewn about, talking and laughing.
“It was just a dream.” He whispered to himself, disappointed.
“What, baby?” asked a familiar female voice from behind him. Ron swung around to see none other than Gabrielle, perfectly alive and applying lipstick, nonetheless. He recognized the color, a coral-like shade of peach. He remembered looking at the hue sitting on Gabrielle’s lips, during the last dance that the couple had shared on the night that Gabrielle had died. He remembered wondering if he should kiss her.
“Ron.” Said Gabrielle, serious now. He shook the thoughts out of his head and looked up at her, dazed. “Are you sure you’re alright? Do you not want to go to the ball?” A thought struck Ron. The mirror…
“Yes! Let’s go to the ball and not eat ham!” Ron exclaimed, jumping up and grabbing her hand. “I won’t eat ham and you’ll never leave me!” He hugged his confused and bemused girlfriend tight, to the point where she was gasping for breath. “Never leave me.” He whispered in her ear.
“Don’t worry about a thing.” Gabrielle said happily, pecking Ron on the cheek. The couple walked hand in hand to the ball, death on neither of their minds.
But Draco still lurked nearby, a grimace on his face as he saw the woman he loved hand in hand with that…with that scum.
Ron and Gabrielle swayed back and forth in time to the slow song. The night had started out fun for the two, but had soon become boring. Ron knew that it was the last song before dinner; he recognized the beat of the monotonous waltz. He heard Gabrielle gave a little sigh almost into his ear; her head was on his shoulder. She was bored to tears, Ron realized. He moved his hands down from her waist to her hips. Her head perked up a little. He moved her in front of him, so that they were now face-to-face, almost nose-to-nose. It had to be perfect…it had to be perfect. Ron leaned in slowly toward her, until their lips were just touching. When she didn’t kiss back, he moved back a little, preparing to apologize. He felt a knot in his stomach; it hadn’t worked.
But then with a new force, she seized him and pressed her lips against his, not showing any signs of pulling back. She played with his hair and put his hand back on her hips. And after the music stopped and the floor cleared for dinner, the couple still remained on the floor, swaying back and forth to the music in their hearts, kissing and dancing, never breaking apart. They remained completely oblivious to the rest of the world until and embarrassed and antagonized Ginny stomped out to the middle of the dance floor and literally pried the two apart. So angry that she was speechless, Ginny gestured to the empty floor. Ron immediately shrunk down, turning red, but Gabrielle was bolder and turned to greet her audience. She waved in a princess-like fashion.
“Dinner and a show.” She said, spreading her arms out wide graciously, to laughter. She took Ron’s hand and the two left the floor with an air of superiority.
This time around, Ron was smart enough to let Gabrielle order first and the ordered the same. They got lost in each other’s eyes as they fed each other romantically. Gabrielle placed a piece of spaghetti in her boyfriend’s mouth, the other end in hers. And imitating the movies used it as another excuse to kiss.
Across the room, Draco felt his fury growing, and when he looked down he was somewhat surprised to see that his solid metal fork was bent and his hands were bleeding.