Chapter 1 : So Does She
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Disclaimer: HP not mine, repeat, not MINE!!!
Harry was a wreck. He was sitting in the old Black home, where his godfather last lived. When he was brought back by the Weasley's, he immidiately had to be held back when Kreacher appeared before him. He had yelled himself hoarse at the thing kicking and screaming setting off Mrs. Black and all other portraits to begin screaming, untill Mrs. Weasley placed a calming charm on him. He had been turned into a comatose concious body and he had felt himslef picked up and carried up to his old room. Guilt washing over him as he heard Hermione's sobs fall and Ron's sniffing constantly after they gently set him down on the bed.
"Harry we're so sorry! I swear!" Hermione cried. He felt her clench his hand tightly. Harry's guilt made his stomach turn fiercely as he heard Ron punch something, the wall probably, as he felt a sprinkle of dust land on him.
"That git of a house elf! We should have let you at him Harry! I swear, and 'Ermione if you start with your SP-" Ron growled, Hermione's sobs grew louder as she cried into Harry's arm. At the moment, Harry would want nothing more than to agree.
"I know. Don't blame me! Kreacher shouldn't have done what he did! But you should know by now house elves aren't completely stable in the head! Their ideas of justice is almost as twisted as the Malfoys! But even still we shouldn't have yelled at him that way." Hermione cried.
"But the stupid piece of dung shouldnt've taken the idea to leave seriously! I'm sure there's some official way of firing an elf without them confusing it! The old bat probably forgotten how it went!" Ron growled. Harry felt the bed lean slightly to his right where Ron's voice had been coming from. "I'm sorry mate. If we could've changed anything, we could've thrown that damn Kreacher into that curtain instead of Sirius. Better yet, we could have thrown Kreacher and Malfoy into that thing!"
The thought did seem to please him and he knew that Ron must be thinking of how it would look if it were true. But it wouldn't bring his godfather back. Feeling the weight lift off either side of the bed. He felt soft gentle hands, persumabably Hermione's, lift away his glasses before they left, saying meek goodbyes, leaving Harry to mix in his sorrows. Even with the curse on him, he could still feel his hot tears stream down his face, how long these tears had been running their course, he could not tell, but he wished they would help.
Harry sat up slowly. Ron wasn't in the room, and sunrise was still in it's process when Harry woke. Obviously he fell asleep and Ron had decided to give him his space. Wiping his red, tired eyes, he yawned. jumping at the small chuckle emitted from the wall.
"Wh- Oh... it's you." Harry sighed as he focused on the dark picture on the wall.
"So, the last pure Black is gone." Phineas sneered. Harry growled as he put on his glasses.
"Is that all your worried about?" Harry asked, his blood boiling once more.
"I would tell you, but I don't need to." The portrait once more sneered, before it began to examine it's nails with a nasty grin. "For someone who barely knew the idiot, you sure put up a ruckus to stand up for him."
"He wasn't an idiot!" Harry growled at the thing. "At least I did something for him, your a part of his bloodline!"
"You'd think he would die in honor fighting The Dark Lord the way you ramble about him. Instead he died by falling into an assasination chaber at the Ministry on his own clumsyness." Phineas drawled on as if Harry hadn't said a thing. Harry could feel his eyes stinging as tears of anger formed in the corner of his eyes.
"He died fighting a Death Eater! That's as close as you could get to fighting Voldermort." Harry hissed, he watched as the portrait laughed at him. Without knowing Harry was already staring Phineas in the face and had pulled him off the wall.
"Oh so your getting rid of me now? Because of some rude comment about an idiot?" He asked, laughing. Harry glared at him, wanting nothing more than to hex it. Then to his surprise a solomn look appeared on it's face. "Even if that sniveling little brat did manage to fight The Dark Lord he wouldn't even make it as far as you did. You heard Dumbledore that morning, that prophecy; Your the only one who has a chance at defeating The Dark Lord. If not your die."
Harry stared transfixed at the portrait, he must've heard the prophecy when he came back and hid when Harry was leaving.
"That's none of your concern." Harry managed to say as he leaned the portrait against the wall. Kicking the front of it slightly in anger he marched out of the room.
Harry sat in the corner of Buckbeaks' room with the creatures head on his lap. He was lost in thought as he stroked Buckbeaks feathery head. Nothing seemed to be going up in his life anymore. Everything he knew, his simple school life at Hogwarts, Sirius, his own thoughts and dreams, even his right hand, all seemed to either become terribly wrong or gone. All because of some prophecy made 15 years ago. He was going to have to kill someone, or after so many years of attempts, Voldermort will finally win.
Harry clenched his free fist, causing Buckbeak to rear his head up at it from Harry's lap. Harry couldn't lose. Humanity practically resided on him. If he lost, all the people he cared about, would be demolished, one-by-one. He couldn't let that happen, but what if he failed? What if the pressure got to him in the heat of battle and he slipped? What then?
Buckbeak squaked slightly when he felt dripping on his head, and moved so he sat next to Harry, watching the poor young man cry silently. As if understanding, Buckbeak nuzzled his head into Harry's shoulder, allowing himself to be hugged by him a moment afterwards.
"Harry?" A voice softly drifted. Harry wiped his eyes slowly to see it had gone from morning to early noon.
"Y-yeah?" He asked, his voice cracking. In the doorway was Hermione and Ron's shoulder could be seen from behind the door's frame.
"We were worried." Hermione told him walking into the room slowly. Ron nodded and followed her in. Harry uncounciously moved over from his seat with Buckbeak onto the bed where the two took a seat.
"Sorry." Harry croaked. Clearing his throat, he allowed himself to sulk.
"You don't need to apologize. We know you need time for yourself." Ron told him, shrugging. Harry felt immense gratitude towards them. Hermione seemed like she was going to start crying.
"He... he was great, wasn't he?" She whipsered. Harry didn't need to ask who, he just simply nodded.
"We should leave something like a memorial for him here." Ron suggested standing and taking a look at the room. "It'll keep us busy when the Order have meetings."
"We don't have to." Harry told them, as he watched Ron looking at things through his hands.
"No Harry we want to, and it'll keep you busy. That's a good thing." Hermione told him, while placing a hand on his shoulder. "Harry your tense, here let...me..." She started to gently knead his shoulders, Harry sat rigid for a moment, as Ron watched amused. Allowing himself to relax Harry felt his muscles loosen under Hermione's touch.
"Need anything mate? Might as well go the whole mile for you." Ron offered, Harry stared curious at him then twisting his head to a blushing Hermione, who meerly smiled.
"Why are you both being so nice?" He asked, staring to Ron, Hermione, then back again.
"We're your friends, we're always here for you when we need you." Hermione told him, leaning over his shoulder to face him.
"Yeah mate, you helped us, so we help you. Simple enough right?" Ron asked, bowing to Buckbeak and petting him.
"You shouldn't... I mean, you should stay away from me." Harry told them, using his unruly hair to obscure his eyes. "With Voldermort around, who knows-"
"Oh give it up Harry." Hermione told him. He craned his head and looked towards her.
"Right Harry, we'll die before we let you on your own to face the git." Ron added.
"Don't say that. You guys shouldn't..." Harry ran an hand through his hair, as he seen his father do, debating weather to tell them about the prophecy. "You just shouldn't."
"Why not? We've been in bad messes before and we always come through don't we?" Ron asked, Hermione nodded earnestly.
"Yeah we have- It's only going to get worse..." And with that, Harry couldn't take it anymore, and told them about the prophecy. When he was done Hermione was almost hugging him from the back and Ron was in awe.
"You have to kill, or get killed?" Ron asked, seemingly desperate to either be amazed or frightened for his friend.
"Oh Harry that's awful!" Hermione squealed, giving him a squeeze.
"So you shouldn't stay here. You don't have to stay with a murderer." Harry told them.
"You haven't done it yet mate." Ron told him, Harry felt Hermione nod.
"That's right Harry. You make it seem that you already did it. And it's for us to decide who we stay with isn't it?" She asked.
"Right, and we're staying right here." Ron confirmed as he pointed to the old dusty carpeting and stomped his foot defiantly, as it sunk in a bit through the flooring.
"But you'll get-" Harry started to plead, but Hermione cut him off.
"Honestly Harry quit acting like a foolish git! We want to stay here were we've been for the last 6 years now! With you!" Hermione told him, definitively.
"Yeah Harry. If we didn't then you would have been walking in that invisibility cloak by yourself all those years ago." Ron told him. Harry stared at the two, unable to say a thing. They knew what he had to do in the future, and they still wanted to stay. He should've known, they've been friends for this long with arguements every now and then, but they were always together. He couldn't say anything but,
"Thanks you guys." And with that he hugged Hermione. Ron told him patting him on the back, watching them as if wanting to join.
"Oh come here you prat." Hermione laughed as she pulled him down. Harry laughed and opened an arm to let him in.
"We're going to stay with you Harry. even if we have to fight tooth and nail to do it." Ron told him.
"And if one of us dies Harry, don't forget about us. But don't stress over it either, we decided to stay where we are, so it's won't be your fault," Hermione told him as she leaned her forehead against Harrys. "Got that?"
"Y-yeah I got it," Harry told her, his stomach did flips when he glanced into her eyes.
"Good," She smiled as the trio stood. "How would it look if..."
And with that they began the redecoration of the room.
"In memory and honor of Sirius Black last of the Blacks. One of the best Marauders, best friend, and best father." Harry read as Tonks did a permanent sticking charm onto the wall. "Perfect."
Harry looked around the room that they worked on that summer, it was cleared out and Buckbeak was moved into the attic along with the furniture. They had taken all their favorite photo's of Sirius and had enlargened them to life-sized versions before posting them on the wall, layering over the backgrounds with smaller photo's. Even the ceiling and floor had photo's on them. Moody had even placed a few talking charms on a few of them.
Harry looked to the wall opposite of the memorial plaque, to see the photo Lupin enlargened and charmed to take up the whole wall and make it talk. They had not pasted smaller photo's onto this one; they liked it just as it was. It was a picture of the Christmas in Grimauld Place with Ron throwing around butterbeers to everyone, Fred and George dueling with their fake wands, and Tonks and Lupin were actually tipsy during the photo and were causing a ruckus as they danced around. Mrs. and Mr. Weasley were sitting on the couch passing presants as Sirius sat on the floor next to Harry and Hermione, all three wearing Christmas hats, as they enjoyed their gifts; a new leather jacket on Sirius who kept changing into a dog and back, a book on DADA for Harry and Harry's book to Hermione. Everyone was laughing and having a good time, just the way it should be.
"It is isn't it?" Hermione asked as she looked at the pictures under the memorial. She had hung a plaque saying 'Sirius's Family' and had taken framed portraits of everyone and hung them just below it.
"Great work it is," Ron grinned as he popped open a bottle of butterbeer. Watching it foam into the cups that Harry and Hermione held out. Ron gave a look around and stopped at the large picture as a large grin appeared on his face. "Well look at that..."
"What?" Harry asked, worried there was a fault in the picture. Walking over he looked at the tiny sprig hanging from the pictures ceiling. "Looks like mistletoe Ron, but what's so special?"
"Oh dear," Hermione gasped, turning pink as she pointed to who was sitting below it. Turning his head down, Harry saw himself and Hermione staring up.
"Oh..." Ron erupted in laughter as he drank from his cup, watching as Harry shakily brought his cup to his lips and drink, watching Hermione do the same from the corner of his eye.
"Well?" He asked, watching his two friends look at him. "Are you going to tell yourselves to kiss or not? It's bad luck to break a tradition, you two and those to," Ron jerked to the photo as he grinned widely. "Have to snog."
Harry felt his face flame at the suggestion as he looked to Hermione. He had been doing that lately; looking over to her, blushing when he caught her eye, she seemed to be doing the same.
"Well, hurry up, don't want to have the bad luck last too long," Ron laughed as he drank straight from the large butterbeer bottle.
"Ron we don't have to kiss, they do..." Hermione pointed out as the photo her looked indignant and embarressed.
"Yes but that's photo you, you'll still have bad luck all the same." Ron told her joyously. Harry glared at him, he seemed to be enjoying himself to much at the moment. The glare dropped into a look of surprise as Ron walked over and pushed him into Hermione. Tripping over his feet Harry nearly fell untill Hermione rush over and caught him. Ron erupted into gales of laughter as he stared at his two friends, one standing on his knees as his arms were wrapped around the others neck, who was bent over to support the other.
Harry stood slowly with his eyes clenched closed, not daring to look Hermione in the face, and not wanting to drop his hands either. Taking a dep breath, he opened his eyes, one after the other.
"Hermione I'm-" He began but had taken a look into Hermione's eyes and stopped. She had the most beautiful eyes he had ever seen and he told her so. "Your eyes are beautiful."
He watched her eyes widened in surprise as she blushed. He grinned lopsidedly as he grasped her shoulders. She smiled a small smile as Harry bent his neck.
Ron had to bite the mouth of the bottle from cheering. They did it, they kissed, both real and photograph, his friends had kissed. He watched as Harry leaned back as he pulled Hermione close and smiled into the kiss, Ron had to pinch his arm to stop from cheering.
Harry felt the sudden relief of letting everything out, and the panic that it was going to end. the jolting excitement of a kiss and the fear of what it all would mean engulfed Harry as he smiled into the kiss. When he kissed Cho that one time, he only felt excitement; he hadn't tried to memorize everything it was, memorized how it felt, how it tasted as he was doing now. He had thought he had done something wrong then, but now, he realized, the problem hadn't been him. It had been who he was kissing. At the moment, he was kissing his best friend, Hermione Granger. The person that knew him for 5 years, the one he almost lost because of a stupid mistake, and it felt right.
"Woah, go Harry, go Hermione!" George smiled as he did a dance he seen a muggle do. Fred laughed as he punched his fist into the air.
"Go Hermione! Go for the gold! Yeah!" Ginny cheered as she waved one of the joke wands and made it explode into confetti.
Harry quickly stopped kissing Hermione but just turned his back to the group as he hugged Hermione close, her arms snaking around his head causing a new roll of catcalls and howls to appear.
"We were going to call you for dinner," George began as he waved for silence. Harry looked over his shoulder as Hermione peered past him, both still entwined together.
"But you both seem to be getting," said Fred grinning as he stood besides George.
"Your fill of each other already." Ginny finished as they laughed and walked out.
"Come on you two, haven't got all day," Ron smiled as he ran out the door. "George don't you dare touch my food with that wand of yours!"
Harry laughed as he hugged Hermione closer as she turned to watch Ron leave. Suddenly looking to each other, they blushed and dropped their hold.
"Well..." Harry stated as they walked to the door.
"Yes, well..." Hermione agreed as she smiled at him, Harry grinned and wrapped an arm around her shoulder. "Remember what I said when you thought you were a bad kisser?"
"Yeah?" Harry asked giving her a quizical look, she grinned as he ruffled his hair.
"Your not." She smiled as she wrapped an arm around his waist and pulled him close. Harry felt his heart skip a beat as she leaned onto his shoulder. Harry looked at her, nothing seemed to be the matter anymore. He remembered how panicked he had been when Dolohov had gotten her, and how lightheaded he was when Neville told him she was alright. And just how a minute ago her kiss had given him a jolt.
"Hermione..." He whispered as he leaned over as they walked down the stairs.
"Hmm?" She responded enjoying the closeness. But before Harry could say a thing she nodded. "You don't have to say a thing Harry, don't worry I won't do this at school." Harry couldn't help but notice the sadness in her voice when he realized what he was implying.
"No nothing like that, just..." Harry blushed as he pulled her clos to him and held the hand around his waist. "I'm glad you think I'm not, and I'm glad that your still here."
Hermione looked up to see him smiling as he rubbed her hand before kissing her cheek. Smiling Hermione grabbed hold of his hand around her shoulders as they walked down to dinner.
'Voldermort may want me dead,' Harry thought as he watched Ron point to them as they entered the dining room; everyone seemed to be smiling. 'But he's going to have to do better if he wants me now.' Harry glanced around the room as he pulled out Hermione's chair for her, watching them all as they watch him in amusement. 'I've got too much to live for...' Harry smiled at everyone as Ron proposed a toast, everyone laughed and joined in. Harry gave Hermione a grin as he glanced at his raised glass and back to her. She smiled as she raised her own. 'And so does she.'