Chapter 2 : Chapter Two
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Harry’s official burial, a week after the battle, was accompanied by a small service to which only the Weasleys, Hermione, and a few ministry members were allowed to attend.
“He was the brother I never had. I didn’t care that he was famous, what mattered was the friendship and bravery, true Gryffindor bravery and friendships with people others had shunned. He could see past the ‘weird’ and ‘different’, a trait maybe the ministry ought to adopt….”
“… he was never big headed, and he didn’t lie, even if lying would have made his life easier. I’m sorry for not believing you mate, you know what about, and thanks for forgiving me, for everything I did wrong, and giving me chance after chance…”
“Harry was as good as a seventh son, and we treated him like one. I’d like to think I helped to show him even a fraction of the love his parents would have had for him…”
“He was there when Fred… Told me he died with a smile on his face, laughing at a joke of Percy’s, Percy making a joke. That must have been something…”
“Mr Potter made many valuable contributions to Wizarding society, and his last sacrifice was his greatest. I would like to thank him on behalf of the ministry and the Wizarding community for all his efforts.”
Ginny sat on her chair all through the service, and watched as his body was lowered into the ground in a daze. It hadn’t hit her yet, just like with Fred and Remus and Tonks, but at least Teddy was alive. She watched as Ron and Hermione cried and comforted one another. She had no one to cry on, the person whose shoulder she would have used was even now being lowered in a box, into a dark damp grave, where he would lie, alone, until his body rotted.
Charlie guided Ginny out of Godric’s Hollow churchyard. She was focusing on simple things, her movements, the ground in front of her feet, waiting for her mind and senses to catch up with reality. Waiting for the realisation the Harry was actually dead to hit her.
Once the Weasleys got home, Ron and Hermione announced that they needed some fresh air, and so they exited the house, hand in hand. Ginny sat on a stool in the kitchen, a mug of tea clasped in her hands, warming her hands.
“I think I’m going to go to the public memeorial service.” Said George suddenly into the silence that had descended on the kitchen. “I mean it’s not just Harry who died… The service is for everyone who died, which is a hell of a lot of people if you include those who didn’t fight. I think they should be mourned just as much as him or Fred or even Remus and Tonks.”
“I’ll come too.” Said Ginny determinedly. “I haven’t had a chance to say goodbye to Colin yet, or any other students that died.”
“That’s settled then, no one else has to come with us if they don’t want to.”
There were hundreds of mourners of all shapes and sizes and ages and nationalities. Although all the bodies had been buried at small family funerals by order of the ministry, there were still all these people who hadn’t been able to say goodbye.
The service was lengthy although only Kingsley Shacklebolt, who had been appointed minister for magic, spoke. He arranged a moment for each person to be remembered as after he said each name a picture floated in the air in front of the crowd, and people sent sparks into the air from their wands. He finished the service by announcing that both the living and the dead that had bene involved with the battle would be award an Order of Merlin, first class.
No one left as soon as the service had ended, not even Kingsley, he spied Ginny and George and made his way over.
“I’m sorry for your losses, and that I couldn’t be at either funeral. I would have liked to have been at both, knowing them personally.”
“I wish you were at Harry’s,” said George. “The ministry guy who spoke was awful, it was so…”
“Impersonal” said Ginny bitterly, interrupting George.
“I’m sorry you feel that way. I hope none of the other mourners feel like that about their ministry speech.” He said sadly.
“I’m sorry Kingsley… I didn’t think.” Said Ginny apologetically.
“Don’t apologise, I understand, I’ll make some enquiries, and hope they weren’t all like that. See you round.” He said and left. Ginny craned her neck to see if she could pick anyone out from the thronging mass. When someone backed into her, she whipped round, and saw Oliver Wood.
“Sorry,” he said hurriedly, without looking at her.
“Oliver!” Said George exuberantly. “How’s things and Puddlemere?”
“George, I’m sorry, it must be weird to not have people have to second guess who you are. Things are good, I’m no longer a reserve, my first match is in a couple of weeks, I’m playing it for Harry.” He looked at Ginny when George put his arm around her. “That’s not Ginny?” he said in surprise. “Wow you’ve grown, you were what second year when I left?”
“Something like that yeah.” She said smiling.
“I heard you and Harry were… I’m sorry.”
“Thank you. I’d like to come to your next game, when is it?”
“Saturday 19th , I’ll see if I can get you VIP passes, you gonna come to George?”
“I’ll be working in the shop, but I’m sure Ron or Charlie…”
“I’ll send a couple if I can get them then.” He said smiling, “look I’d better go, I’ve taken time off of practise to come here. See you on Saturday.” And he too left.
“Shall we go home Ginny? There isn’t anyone else you want to look for is there?”
“I was going to see if I could find the Creeveys, but they are all so small I won’t see them in this crowd.” She sighed. “Let’s go.” The two of them disappeared with a pop.
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