For the first time in a year the Potter house was buzzing with guests, it was New Years Eve and instead of mopping about how Isobella was no longer with the family, Harry decided to have a party, it was a Celebration/New Year party, the celebration part was in honour of Izzy's life, to Harry it was the perfect way to celebrate the life of a perfect sister.
The house was packed with old school friends and their families, the Weasley's the extended version, and the usual guest Remus and his family and Sirius, it had started with a quiet kids party then it descended into a louder adults party, of course every thirty minutes there was someone who went and checked on all of the kids.
“How are you doing Harry?” Luna yelled over the noise, she had joined him at the drinks table.
“I'm OK, considering” He yelled back
“I don't know how you managed to cope through it all Harry”
“Hermione” He replied simply and Luna nodded in understanding and joined in with the rest of the crowed.
Harry walked over to Hermione and pulled her into a soft kiss, when he pulled apart he winked at her and left her standing with a smile on her face, he slipped out of the dining room and crept up the stairs to the rooms the kids were staying in, He checked the Weasley kids first and all were fine, next was his Godson, Teddy was lying on his back with his limbs sprawled everywhere, Harry smiled at how cute he looked and gave him a kiss on his head. Lastly it was his children, James was lying on his belly and sucking his thumb, Harry crept over and fixed his blanket so he wouldn't get cold. He had a quick look at Riley and Celeste who were lying face to face with an arm over one another, he smiled and felt a rush of love for all three of his children, he quickly glanced at them once more and left the room to go back to the party.
The house buzzed into the early hours of the morning, with the countdown to the New Year and a speech on Izzy being made, Harry had almost finally got his family back together, now the only people who he had to work on was his parents.
January 20th 2004
Ginny sighed and eased her rather large frame on to the couch, she switched on her t.v and opened yet another box of chocolates, she was a week over due and very fed up with being pregnant, she had done everything she could to get the baby to come out but to no avail, so now she'd resigned herself to just waiting for the damn thing to come out. As she sat and watched the soap opera called Emmerdale, which was a very popular even show amongst the muggles, she reminisced about the first time she had arrived, she had found a small one bed house on the outskirts of a small village, it took her two weeks to settle into the routine of not using magic for everything, and all the electrical appliances were even worse, she was so bad at it that she had to get in one of her friendly neighbours to help her, and the money side of things was just as bad. Ginny sighed as she remembered how much she missed being a witch, she stretched over to to grab another cushion for her back when a short sharp pain stabbed through her stomach, she instinctively grabbed her stomach as the pain quickly passed over her, she took a few deep breaths and tried to get up but another sharp pain coursed though her stomach, after panting through the pain for at least thirty seconds and now she was panicking, she had no idea what was happening to her and there was no one to help her once the intense pain has subsided she gently stood up and started to walk over to the unit where the pile of baby books that she had bought sat, but once she took a step forward she heart a low pop and suddenly fluid was gushing from in between her legs, this time she really panicked as another sharp pain hit her stomach, it was worse than the first two and she was really scared, she managed to waddle to the table and pick up her book on labour, she flicked to the back page and scanned though it, after breathing through another bolt of sharp pain she decided that she had went into labour, and rang her midwife she then grabbed her keys, wand, purse and hospital bag and waddled out the door, not even bothering to change out of her pyjamas, she waddled to a safe deserted piece of waste land in between her house and the entrance of the village, she stood their for another thirty seconds as another contraction hit her before apparating to a dark alley way beside the hospital, she looked about for any other people before slowly making her way into the hospital.
Two and a half hours later and Ginny was still panting her way through labour the doctor had came in and gave her an epidural, which was a type muggle pain relief that eased the pain of labour, she was grateful for the relief, but now it was the difficult part, the midwife had informed her fifteen minutes that her labour had progressed much faster than the average woman and she was now ready to deliver the baby, so now here she was panting her way through a contraction as she pushed with all her might, even with the pain relief it was still unbelievably painful. A further hour later and after several changes in position, she was now once again lying on her back with the midwife exclaiming that she could finally see the baby's head, and with the strong contractions along with three mighty pushes Ginny finally gave birth to her baby.
“It's a girl!” The midwife exclaimed handing the bloody, messy baby to her. Ginny squirmed a bit as she stared into the beautiful blue eyes of her daughter, she had a thick wave of dark brown hair and darker skin than what Ginny had, she also had big lips and a cute button nose.
“I'll call you River Louise Weasley” Ginny sighed.
“Lets get her cleaned up” The midwife said lifting her daughter out of her arms, Ginny nodded and watched the midwife walk out of the room with her. Once the door had closed Ginny broke down sobbing.
Two weeks later and Ginny was back home and struggling to cope with her daughter, she found it difficult to cope with her constant crying, she fed her, changed her and even winded her but nothing seemed to settle her, except one thing and Ginny was not about to give in, you see Ginny looked into her daughters eyes that had now turned a dark brown, and felt nothing for her. She was a terrible mother and she knew it.
“River will you please just stop it!” She yelled, she had be pacing about the house for an hour listening to her daughters crying, knowing what she wanted but not being able to give it to her. This however only made River scared and therefore she cried louder.
“OK mummy's sorry” Ginny said picking her up, her crying ceased after thirty seconds and Ginny could finally hear herself think. She set her down after a minute and the crying started again.
“I just can't do this” she said to herself and ran up the stairs.
Half an hour later and Ginny had left her house, she had walked to a friends house and handed her they keys telling her to give them to her landlord if he came by. She walked to the clearing dragging two suitcases along with one hand and her daughter with the other, she stopped at the most secluded bit and said one last goodbye to her muggle life and apparated away.
She had waited, waited for five hours until her parents had went out, she sat amongst some trees cuddling her daughter close trying to keep her warm, once the coast was clear she dashed over and set her daughter on the step, she was in her Moses basket and was wrapped in a thick blanket and a thinner one was placed over her, by now Ginny was crying as she placed a letter on top of the basket she gave her daughter one last kiss before standing up.
“I'm sorry River, I just can't do it” she cried and apparated away.
Molly and Arthur apparated to the field outside of their house after spending the evening visiting Ron, Luna and Emmet, they had a really good time and were ready for bed. Only as they approached their house they heard what sounded like a baby's cry.
“Did you hear that?” Molly asked Arthur and they stopped a few feet away from the house straining to hear the noise again, and they did only this time it was much louder. Arthur stepped a bit closer and realised that there was something sitting on their front door step.
“There's something on the door step” Arthur said and they approached it carefully with their wands drawn.
“It's a baby!” Molly exclaimed and rushed forward, but Arthur grabbed her arm.
“Don't touch it, it might be a trap” Arthur said.
“But the poor thing is bound to be freezing”
“Then we'll light a fire for it, but just don't touch it yet, I'm going to floo Harry”
“OK” Molly sighed in defeat and lit a fire that floated beside the baby.
Arthur walked to the fireplace and through in some floo powder, the fire glowed green and he stuck his head inside it and called Harry Potter. Seconds later he could see Harry's living room.
“Harry” he called out and waited for a few seconds until he appeared.
“Arthur, what's up?” he asked
“We need your help with something, there was a baby abandoned outside our hose tonight and we wandered if you could come over and take a look at it, see if it has any dark magic on it?”
“Who would be sick enough to abandon a baby in the dead of winter?” He asked. “You know what don't answer that, I'll be over as soon as possible”
“Thank you” Arthur said and disappeared.
“Who was that?” Hermione asked walking into the living room
“Arthur” Harry replied grabbing his wand. “There's been a baby abandoned outside their house and he wants me over to check it out”
“Oh my Gosh, that's awful” Hermione gasped “ Can I go?”
“I don't want it upsetting you”
“Please Harry” she begged and he nodded his head
“Dad, mum” Harry called and walked out into the hall.
“What's wrong?” They asked walking out of the kitchen.
“There's been a baby abandoned outside the Weasley's and they asked me to come over to check it out, Hermione wants to go with me can you two look after the kids please? He asked as he put on his long winter coat.
“Of course” They said in unison.
“Who would abandon a baby in the middle of winter?” Lily asked horrified.
“I really dread to think” Harry replied and walked out the door.
Harry and Hermione arrived with in five minutes of Arthur calling for them, they found Arthur and Molly standing a few feet away from the suspicious baby.
“So what happened?” Harry asked pulling out his wand.
“We went out to see Ron, Luna and Emmet, and when we came back the baby was here” Arthur replied clearly in shock at the thought of a baby being abandoned outside his house.
“What time was that at?”
“Around six O'clock, we went for our tea” Molly replied.
“And you arrived back at half seven?” He asked looking at his magic watch and seeing that it was around quarter to eight.
“Who would have known what time you were going out at, and still leave enough time to abandon the baby before you were back? I mean they've got have been watching the house” Hermione observed.
“Did you see anyone lurking around the house?” Harry asked.
“No one” Arthur replied.
“Do you know anybody who would trust you too look after their child?”
“No Harry, no one” Molly replied, turning away from his questioning stare, it was clear to Harry that she was thinking the same thing that he was but just didn't want to say it. And the truth be told, he didn't want to believe it either.
Harry walked over to the baby until he was inches from it, and performed a spell around the area, when it turned out to be safe Harry approached the crying baby and performed the necessary spells, on everything, once he got the all clear he lifted the Moses basket and took the baby into the house. He set the baby in front of the fire and handed Molly a letter that was with the baby. Molly took the letter and recognised the handwriting on the front, sighing she opened the letter with a shaky hand.
Dear Mum and Dad,
Say Hello to your granddaughter, her name is River Louise Weasley, she was born on January 20th in Ireland. I know you aren't proud of me and I don't deserve to ask you this favour, but I do really need to ask you this favour...
...You see, I have tried, I mean really tried, I tried for two weeks, but I just can't, I can't look after her. I am the worst mother in the world, I couldn't change her nappy, or feed her properly or even know how to comfort her when she was crying. I just couldn't bring myself to love her. And now I've grown tired and weak and I just can't stand being near her any more, I know that is a harsh thing to say, but I just don't have enough feelings towards her too look after her properly.
So now I am trusting you, my wonderful parents too look after her for me, I know that she'll get the love and care from you that she so needs. I know this a lot to ask and I am in no position to ask you for any favours, but I am in desperate need of this favour.
With all my love Ginny.
“It's...it's Ginny's daughter” Molly whispered stunned looking at the baby that looked nothing like her beautiful daughter.
“What?” Harry and Hermione said in unison.
“She says that she can't look after her because she doesn't love her” Molly wept as she handed Hermione the letter.
“I can't believe this, I've known Ginny for years and I never thought that she'd ever do this. What has happened to her?” Hermione asked
“Bad life style” Molly whispered sinking into a chair, barely able to look at her granddaughter.
Half an hour later and Harry had called over Ron, George and their respectful families. The situation was explained to them and they read the letter, then they each took turns in holding their niece.
“What are we going to do?” George asked.
“I really don't know” Molly said rocking her granddaughter in her arms. “Your dad and I are too old for to do this all again”
“We'll all help” Ron replied.
“That's so sweet Ron, but you have your own child to worry about.”
“We'll do it as well” Harry offered, and everyone looked at him stunned. “I know I have my problems with Ginny but that isn't the baby's fault and she should remain with her family, so Hermione, Ron, Luna, George, Angelina and I will all help in anyway we can.”
“But Harry you have three young children of your own”
“That doesn't matter, you guys are like my family, and I will help out family in anyway I can”
“Really Molly, we all want to do this” Hermione said honestly and everyone nodded.
“It seems like the best thing” Arthur said.
“OK” Molly sighed and nodded.
“Can we change her name?” George asked “River sounds like a seventies hippy name.”
“I don't really want to, I mean Ginny choose it and it is her daughter”
“Well how about then just using her middle name, Louise” Hermione suggested.
“Or shortening it to Lou” Luna suggested and everyone nodded in agreement.
“OK, we'll call her Lou. But I think we should get in contact with Ginny. You know and see if we can persuade her to come home.”
“I'll track her down for you.” Harry offered.
“OK , that's great but who will be the one to convince her to come home?” Arthur asked.
“I will” Hermione offered. “I want to know what has happened to her”
After an hour of settling arrangements with the baby and getting to know her, Harry and Hermione and Ron, Luna and Emmet all headed home, George and Angelina stayed behind to help Arthur and Molly with their first night with the baby.
A.N. So tell me what you think. Did you expect Ginny to abandon her baby? This is the penultimate chapter, so the last one will be the longest one.