Chapter 2 : Love for thoughts
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Disclaimer: Nothing you recognize belongs to me, all belongs to JKR except my plot and my characters.
Hermione’s point of view
Ron and I walk down to the Great Hall, and step over the rubble littering the floor. His arm around me is comforting even as we dread what we're going to see. I feel like I'm dreaming, which fits in a way, because how many times does a day like this ever happen? I sway slightly, and lean in towards Ron. Maybe he’ll just think I’m getting closer or something, and not think I’m about to…
“Hermione, are you alright? You look like you’re about to pass out”
“I’m just tired that’s all. We’ll go up to the tower to rest soon; do you realize we haven’t seen anybody for practically a year? I feel like I’ve been alone for ages, it’ll be nice to be there for each other now that this is over.” I realize I’m rambling a little, but I don’t really care at this point.
Ron still looks at me with a frown. “Yeah, but I think they would all understand if you're too tired, I don’t want you passing out. I’m pretty tired too, and I don’t think I could hold you up” he gives me a weak halfhearted smile.
“We’ll only be a minute, we’re practically there already. Unless you’re too tired, then we could go-“
“No, you want to go, so I’ll go with you-“
“Really Ron, you’re the one who looks- (yawn)… Oh, forget it. I’m too tired to argue”
“That’s a first, and prolly the last” he smirks. Even with bags under his eyes it still irks me.
But I love it.
Once at the Great Hall we go over to Mr. and Mrs. Weasley. They rush over to Ron with tears in their eyes, grateful that one of their sons came back and was alright. I stand there awkwardly for a minute when Mrs. and Mr. Weasley come over to me next.
“Oh dear, we were so worried about you. If anything had happened it would be like losing another child you know” Mrs. Weasley said, as she gave me her famous hug that could crush you if you aren’t careful. I welcome it, and return it to her just as much. She's like a second mother to me, and if I don’t have my own parents right now, I’m grateful I have the Weasleys’.
I hug Mr. Weasley next and catch his look before he hugs me just as tight as his wife. He looks like a daughter has just come home and he couldn’t protect her from the harsh world. I start crying. I miss my own parents so much right now, I can’t help it. Mr. Weasley just keeps hugging me, and strokes my hair until I finally stop. He sits me down ‘cause I think I swayed again.
Now I'm able to calm down.
Once I do, the opposite happens; I expected to go to other people, comfort them, but instead friends come to me and Ron. Everyone, Luna, Neville, Dean, too many people I can’t name them all. They just tell us everything we want to know. I'm can’t take it all in, but they tell us who got hurt, and who isn’t and is off helping elsewhere. In the fog of everyone around us I hear Luna mention that the castle seems to be repairing itself. It’s intriguing and vaguely wonder why that wasn’t in Hogwarts: A History but I’m just too tired to wonder too long. My tired brain understands one thing right now, and for once isn’t all the information, but the love.
Next thing I know, I went from sitting at one of the tables, to lying next to Ron in the most comfortable bed I’d been in. But maybe I'm only thinking that because we were sleeping on cots for 9 months this year... I squint from the sun shining through the curtains, and turn over to look at Ron snoring loudly. How in the world did I not wake up from that sooner? He snores loudly again and turns over to flop his arm over my side, his leg over both of mine. I can’t move. He’s snoring in my ear, and I can’t move. I start laughing at the hilarity of the situation. Not even bothering to keep it down. He’s not going to wake that easily anyway.
“Whossair?” asks a sleepy voice I recognize as Ginny’s.
“It’s me, don’t worry.”
“Hermione? Is that you? Wait, where are you?” I hear the rustle of blankets and assume she’s looking around for me. I would be too if I heard a friends’ voice, but couldn’t see them.
“I’m next to your brother, he’s sleeping on top of me and I can’t move” I say, giggling again. I can’t help it, it’s been too long since I laughed, and now I’m finding it slightly easier.
“Just shove him, he won’t even notice”
“I don’t think I have the strength to… Wait, I have a better idea. Turn around a second.”
“Well, unless you want to see me snog your brother-“
“Merlin, no! I need to go to the toilet anyway just a sec” I hear her rush away and close the door.
I look at him and turn over the best I could to kiss him when his mouth wasn’t that open from snoring. It takes a minute to get the right angle, but when I do, my mind blanks except for that wonderful lightheadedness. I kiss his face, and he starts to move. So I go back to his lips and hope he responds this time. He wakes up suddenly, turns over and kisses me properly, and makes me breathless. He kisses my face, my neck, and starts all over again. I look up at him drowsily when he stops and looks at me with his big blue eyes. They’re filled with love, and I’ve never seen him look at me that way before. It affects me like none of his kisses ever could.
“That was the best way I’ve ever woken up. Usually waking up period is horrible, but that was great” he smiles sweetly and kisses me on the nose.
“How else was I supposed to get up? You were practically sleeping on top of me! Not that I wouldn’t have wanted to wake you up another way” I turn to snog him again, but Ginny walks back in the room.
“Hey you, are you done snogging your girlfriend yet to give your only sister a hug?”
“Nope” said Ron, and turned back to pretend to kiss me again to annoy Ginny.
"Hey!" She yells at him.
He turns away from me to see her better, "That's what you get for just staring at Harry, after seeing me for the first time in months!" He tells her smirking. Then he sits up properly so he can give Ginny a hug and laugh at each other.
As much as it's nice to see the reunion between them, I can't help but get the butterflies. If he didn’t get upset by Ginny’s “girlfriend” remark then…
“That is, if Hermione will agree to being my girlfriend,” Ron says seriously and turns back to me. He looks so nervous, I nearly laugh saying,
“Do you really think I’d have woken you up that way otherwise? It’s still nice of you to ask though-“
“Just tell me already!”
“Of course you prat!”
Ron’s point of view
I grin bigger than I have in forever.
“Nice way to talk to your boyfriend like that! Maybe I’ll just keep this mouth of yours shut,” I was about to kiss the silly grin off Hermione’s face when I hear,
“Will you two be quiet already? I was sleeping!” Oops, I guess Harry’s awake now.
“Sorry mate” I'm feeling pretty sheepish right about now.
“Well, besides these 2 who seem to just snog each others’ face for breakfast, why don’t me and you call for some actual food eh Harry?”
“Wait, wasn’t it morning when we fell asleep?” Harry asks, he looks beat, but I think I would be too if I had done everything he went through yesterday. I shove those thoughts away though.
“Yeah, we all must have slept the entire time” I say and stretch, punctuated with a message from my stomach that says "hi" to everyone with a growl.
“Real subtle Ronald” giggles the girl in my arms. I’m one lucky guy, even if she is teasing me.
“Kreacher?” Says Harry with another yawn.
A loud pop sounds and the elf appears. I was wondering if it would work since Harry didn’t say it clearly.
“Yes, Master Harry?”
“Could you get us something for breakfast please?” Out of the corner of my eye I see Hermione grin at Harry’s manners.
“Of course, Master Harry. Oh, I would also like to be telling Miss Ginny that everyone has a few changes of clothes that Kreacher cleaned and pressed Miss.”
“Thank you so much Kreacher, you’ve done great!” Ginny gives him a pat on the head. I expect him to flinch away, but instead he looks rather pleased with himself.
“I’ll go prepare the breakfast now, it will only be a minute,” my stomach growls again, thankfully, this time, it’s covered by the popping noise when Kreacher disapperates.
“I wonder how everyone’s doing. There’re so many people I need to talk to” Harry says, hanging his head. I bet the loud sound Kreacher made that snapped him into thinking about it.
“Hey, don’t worry too much about it Harry, we’ll be with you the whole time” Ginny says soothingly; Harry gives her a small kiss for that. This is something I haven’t seen much of. Usually Ginny teases me about something. I didn’t really think much about her ability to be this soothing. I’m glad Harry has that though, he could use it.
“But Ginny, there’s Andromeda and little Teddy, your parents, and who knows who else…”he starts.
“We’ll get through it together Harry, it won’t be easy, but we’ll do it” Hermione says softly.“That will have to include finding my parents. Everyone doesn’t have to come with me, don’t worry. Harry, you have to be here for Teddy and Andromeda, Ginny and Ron you'll have to be here for your family…”
“Don’t be ridiculous, I’m going with you,” I give her a kiss on the head. “We just need to stay for the service. Dad told me that there’s going to just be one large memorial service that will include everyone who, um, who passed away here at Hogwarts.” I clear my throat. I can’t think about that too much… Talking about all this hurts like hell, but it seems this was news to everyone, so I'm glad to be useful. So I continue…
“Kingsley said the Ministry is taking care of all the costs because they did such a crap job preparing for a war. We won’t have to go anywhere for a while thankfully.”
The room goes an eerie quiet, waiting for Kreacher, or anything else at this point to break the awkward pause.
We hear a knock on the door, and we all jump.
It’s a voice we all know, and we relax.
“Here you all are; how are you feeling Hermione? It still looks like you have a few Wrackspurts around your head.”
“I’ll feel better when I’ve eaten, thanks Luna” she tells her with a grateful smile.
“How did you get in anyway?” I ask.
“Great greeting Ronald,”
“Oh shut it, I was going to say hi too,” ruffling Hermione’s already ruffled hair.
“With Neville through the Portrait hole; I didn’t want to sleep in the Ravenclaw tower, this seems friendlier. No bad memories here.” A familiar awkward silence fills the room, the kind only Luna can achieve.
But Hermione breaks it quickly and says,
“Oh, Luna, is the castle still repairing itself?
“Is the castle still WHAT?” Harry exclaims, shocked, but happily.
My mouth hangs open. I slightly remember Luna mentioning it before Hermione passed out, but I was too worried about her to really take too much else in.
“Oh, yes, the castle seems to be doing quite well in most places,” said Luna, ignoring Harry’s outburst. “Neville has a group going around helping it along, but we’re not sure what’s wrong with the Room of Requirement. I think I’m going to send an Owl to dad to ask if he has any ideas to help, and to tell him I'm alright of course."
Hermione, Harry and I look at each other uncomfortably…
"Um, Luna, when was the last time you talked to your father?" Hermione asks slowly.
This might not be good. Luna might not even know about the Death Eaters going there...
"Not since before I was kidnapped, why?"
Hermione takes a breath, and clears her throat. "You might want to sit down a minute Luna. We're sorry we didn't have time to tell you at Shell Cottage, everything was going so crazy," Hermione tells her softly.
Luna sits, and her face looks more confused now than I've ever seen it. She always seemed to have her own understanding of things, but now, it's much more unnerving that she doesn't know that something. Especially with what could have happened to her father.
"Luna, we went to see him earlier that day, before we got to Malfoy Manor, and he tried to turn us in to get you back. Don't think that we hate him or anything for it," Hermione reassures her after seeing Luna about to defend him.
"He just seemed like he was going a bit crazy not knowing how you were. He wasn't normal. The thing is, when the Death Eaters came to try to get us, they also started destroying your house. We're not sure what happened to him, we were just trying to escape."
Luna just looks shocked. I've never seen her this way before.
"Well, I'll just go check on him in person then. Thank you for telling me Hermione. It's alright that you didn't tell me earlier or I would have gone sooner when it wasn't safe."
"Yes, and um, Luna, I'd check with Professor McGonagall about getting there, or maybe Kingsley."
"Oh, that reminds me, before I go, to tell you, Professor McGonagall had just came by saying that we’ll be having a funeral/ memorial service next Sunday, since doing one today would be a bit of short notice." Tears start going down her face but she doesn't seem to notice.
"This will give them time to contact people, and get everything ready of course." No, she must notice she's crying, she's wiped some off her face.
"I can’t imagine what this week will be like for people telling family someone’s died, it must be horrible." More tears... I may have the emotional range of a teaspoon sometimes, but I look around for some tissues or something.
"I might help anyway though; it might take some of the burden off the Professors and everyone. I guess I’ll go talk to McGonagall about it while I check about seeing Dad."
She closes her eyes a second which makes more tears fall and I still don't see any tissues anywhere (but we are in the Boys dorm, and men don't cry usually right? Why would we need them? Ahem, except for that time... no, not now...).
"I'll see everyone later” and with her dreamy smile, with her eyes filled with tears, she turns to leave the room.
"Luna!" Harry calls after her, she turns back to us. Her face blank, and still with tears down her face.
"If you ever need anyone to talk to, you know how to find us," Harry tells her.
She hides her face in her hands. Ginny gets up to give her a hug. Hermione gets up next, then Harry and I. We try to give her all the support we can in this hug. Once in the hug though, it feels like we're all just relaxed, and not really giving anything, we don't have much more to give anyway.
She pulls out of the hug after a bit, "Thank you all, you've always been so kind. Hugs seem to be the way to get through to someone when they're hurting isn't it? I'll keep that in mind when I talk to McGonagall. I'll talk to you all soon," and with tears still streaking down her face, she leaves the room.
We all look at each other in shock how Luna can cope through all of this even when she's going through so much herself. I don't see her as the same dreamy crazy girl anymore. In fact, I'm not sure what I see her as, but I'm impressed either way.
A minute after she leaves our breakfast appears, and we all stop gaping at each other and dig in for the next hour or so. We're all pretty consumed in our own thoughts. I know mine go back and forth between sad thoughts, and happy thoughts. It makes for a confusing breakfast, but Hermione's still smirking at my eating habits the whole time. Food, and Hermione, a few of my most favorite things, and they're both right next to me.
The only thing that would make this perfect is if my family was whole. I swallow a lump that formed in my throat, and a piece of sausage, (makes it really hard to do.) I guess if this is as good as it gets for now, I’ll take it.
A/N: Hi everyone, 10/1/2012 I had to go back and get all the pesky edits done with. Really, this is prolly it. I think it's a lot better, but I won't know if it's unanimus if you don't review :) I promise I'll do an author's response :) Thanks for reading!
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