I am making this a short message since it's father's day! Thank you all for the continuous support! It means so much to me! Please enjoy! And happy father's day to all the wonderful, caring fathers out there! :D (Gorgeous banner by azimuth at TDA!)
A few days later, Ginny was working in the tent when an owl flew in with a stack of envelopes. She let her fingers play with the top of the brown barn owl’s head as she untied the string that was tied to his foot. Ginny grabbed the letters and placed them on the desk before she went into her drawer and grabbed out a small treat. The owl nipped the treat out of her hand and flew off.
Ginny untied the string that was tying the envelopes together and started to sort through it. “Charlie…Charlie…Alin…Charlie…Alin…Alin…Weasley’s….Charlie….” Doing a double take, Ginny took the envelope that had Weasley’s written on it in perfect script. She smiled as she recognized Fleur’s handwriting. She undid the envelope and started to read:
Dear Charlie and Ginny,
I hope all is well with you two! Bill, Victoire, and I miss you deeply. We’re hoping that those dragons aren’t burning you too bad, especially you, Charlie.
We know you two are busy, so I’ll keep this short and get to the point. Bill’s birthday is coming up next week, and we were going to have a family get together next Sunday. It’d be wonderful if you two could make it. Everyone would really enjoy seeing the both of you.
Well, please let me know whether you two will be attending! Can’t wait to hear from you. Stay safe, and we will catch up later! Ta ta for now!
Fluer, Bill, and Victoire
Ginny smiled and got up from her chair, rushing out of the tent. As she stood at the tent’s mouth, she saw Charlie and Alin making their way towards her. She grinned and waved as she shouted, “Charlie! Charlie hurry up!”
The two finally made it to her, Alin walking past and into the tent. Charlie looked after him and then at Ginny. “What’s going on, Ginny?”
“We just received a letter from Fleur. Bills’ birthday is next week, and they’re having a get together that Sunday, December 1st. Could we go, Charlie?”
Charlie looked down at her, his face set hard. He moved his hand to the back of his neck and started rubbing it as he started to think. Ginny continued to look up at him, pleading with him. His face then broke into a smile as he said, “Of course we can go, Ginny. I think that that’s a great idea.”
“Thank you, thank you, thank you!” she exclaimed happily as she hugged him tightly.
“You’re such a kid,” he laughed as he tapped her back a few times. “Now, let me go. I need something to eat.”
He moved past her and walked into the tent. Ginny looked down at Fleurs’ letter with a grin. She did a slight jig and then went into the tent. Moving towards her desk, she noticed that Alin was standing next to it, picking up his mail.
“Here, there’s a letter for you,” Alin said as he handed her a scroll.
“Thank you,” she grinned as she sat back down. Alin was about to leave when she said, “Alin, please wait.” He turned to look at her. “I wanted to apologize for the other night, you know, with Draco,” she whispered as she looked in Charlie’s direction.
“Don’t worry about it, Ginny, we were both in the wrong,” Alin responded as he smiled and placed his hand on her shoulder. “Draco seems like a good guy.”
She smiled and nodded. He gave her one last smile and squeeze on the shoulder before moving towards the couch. She then undid the scroll and started reading.
I told you I would write you and keep you updated for tonight. I talked to McGonagall and I’m able to come tonight for dinner. I can’t wait to see you and meet your brother. He knows I’m coming…right? Well, knowing you, you’re probably going to tell him as I’m knocking on the door. I suppose we’ll find out how much of a good impression that will make.
I should probably get back to circling around the classroom. There’s a billowing cloud of dark green smoke coming from the back of the room, and that can’t be good. I will see you tonight, can’t wait.
Ginny chuckled softly and Charlie said, “What’s so funny?”
She jumped as she folded up the letter quickly and looked up at him. “Don’t do that!”
“Do what? I just asked a question,” he answered innocently with a smile.
“Sneak up behind me!” she exclaimed.
“Okay, okay, relax,” he said with a chuckle. “Care to share what was so funny now?
Ginny bit on her lip as she looked away from Charlie, a small smile on her face. “Nothing, nothing at all.”
“C’mon, you can tell me,” Charlie said.
“Charlie, it’s nothing,” Ginny said as she looked back at Charlie, a small smile still on her face.
“Whatever you say, Sis. C’mon, Alin, we better get back out there.”
“Be right there,” Alin responded as stood up and had started headed towards the mouth of the tent. Alin watched as Charlie exited the tent before he looked down at Ginny. “From Draco, I presume?”
She looked up at him with a smile as she nodded silently. He smiled back and lightly patted her on the shoulder. “Good for you, Gin.”
Without saying anything more, Alin walked out of the tent and headed back to work. Ginny turned back around and started her work again, her mind on what was going to happen later that night.
A few hours later, Ginny and Charlie were at the house, cleaning up. Charlie was outside, working on the yard, while Ginny was inside cooking dinner. She was working on Charlie’s favorite dish, chicken and ham pie, with boiled potatoes and a freshly tossed salad.
Ginny finished setting the table and then checked on the chicken and ham pie before going into her bedroom to change. Looking through her closet, she passed clothes after clothes until she finally chose a cream colored peasant top. She slid on a pair of jeans and then her cream colored flats. She walked into the bathroom and gave her one last check, putting on a brush of lipgloss and blush.
Smiling slightly, she then walked out towards the kitchen and placed the salad on the table. As she turned to the counter to check on the chicken and ham pie, she looked out the window and saw Charlie shaking someones hand. Charlie let go of the figures’ hand and then bent down to pick up a shovel and Ginny’s jaw dropped as she recognized Draco. Without a moment to lose, she rushed out of the door and towards them, her hair flying.
“Hello, Ginny,” Draco said with a small smile.
“What are you doing out here?” she asked, not being able to help herself.
“I figured I’d introduce myself to Charlie before I just rudely showed up in his house,” he answered as he sent a nod toward Charlie.
“I didn’t know we were expecting a guest,” Charlie said as he looked at Ginny.
She chuckled nervously as she said, “Must’ve slipped my mind.”
“Well, what are we waiting for? You hungry, Draco?” Charlie questioned as he looked back at him.
He nodded and answered, “Starving.”
Charlie nodded and then started heading towards the house. Draco started after him. As he reached Ginny, he wrapped an arm around her shoulder and gave it a squeeze, kissing her head gently. “Relax, everything’s going to be okay.”
“I really wish you hadn’t changed the plan,” she responded as she leaned her head on his chest for a moment.
“Well, what was I supposed to do? I knew you weren’t going to tell him beforehand, even after my reminder,” he said with a small chuckle, “and I was right.”
Ginny looked up at him with a small smile and they then walked into the house, Ginny walking away slightly from him. Draco chuckled at her as he closed the door behind him. He then walked into the house a little more, looking around for the first time.
“Have a seat,” Charlie said from the table, motioning towards the seat next to him.
“Thank you,” Draco replied as he sat down. “I’m sorry that it seemed I was just dropping in. Ginny had invited me a few days ago.”
Charlie put on a smile as he looked at Ginny. “I knew there was something going on when she offered to cook.”
“Hey!” Ginny exclaimed as she brought over the chicken and ham pie. “I always help with dinner.”
“But never cooked it yourself,” he answered as he let out a soft chuckle.
“Careful, Charlie, she might have poisoned it,” Draco said as he laughed along.
“Definitely something she’d do,” Charlie admitted.
Ginny sat down and said, “Keep it going and see what happens.”
Charlie started laughing as he served himself a piece of the chicken and ham pie. Draco looked at Ginny with a smile and she smiled back. They continued to pile the food on their plates and began eating, silence overcoming them.
Eventually, Charlie looked from Draco to Ginny and played with his fork as he began, “So, what do we owe the pleasure of having you here, Draco?”
Ginny looked up quickly, her eyes darting to Draco as she looked at him nervously. Draco looked up from his plate, setting his fork down, and looked at Charlie. “I work with Ginny at Hogwarts, and without her there, I’ve missed her. We’ve become pretty close and I’d like to keep it that way, so we both agreed that it was about time that to take the next step and meet each others families.”
“You mean you two are dating?” Charlie questioned as he looked to Ginny.
She nodded as her cheeks tinged red slightly. “I wanted to introduce you two. I figured it’d be easier than introducing him to the whole family at once.”
“That should be a riot,” Charlie stated as a smile came across her face. “Draco will be the first one you’ve introduced since Harry, eh?”
Ginny looked at Charlie as her stomach and chest tightened. Her mouth twitched slightly as her eyes began to water. Draco took her hand and gave it a slight squeeze. At his touch, she looked over at him and he smiled, her stomach and chest then loosened up slowly. She then looked back at Charlie and nodded, “Yes, he will.”
“Mum’ll go nuts. When do you plan on introducing him to the rest of the family?”
“I was thinking Christmas,” Ginny answered as she quickly glanced at Draco.
“Why not next Sunday at Bill’s birthday celebration? The whole family should be there,” Charlie suggested.
“I don’t know…,” Ginny trailed off.
“Well, you think about it. Thanks for the delicious meal. I’ll get the dishes started,” Charlie said as he pulled out his wand and had the dishes hover into the sink, the water splashing onto them. He had the scrub brush start washing the dishes as he stood up from his chair and walked over to Draco, clapping him on the back. “What do you say we go for a walk?”
“Sounds good,” Draco answered as he stood from his chair. He walked over to Ginny slightly who was looking nervous. He kissed the top of her head and mumbled, “Relax.”
“Be back shortly, Ginny,” Charlie said as him and Draco walked through the door.
As they continued walking, Charlie started to head over to the hill where the sun was setting behind. When they reached the top, Charlie sat down, Draco following suit. Charlie then looked at Draco and said, “I’ve heard a lot about you. I must admit, a lot of it isn’t too good.”
“From the days in Hogwarts, I’m guessing?” Draco questioned as he looked at Charlie. Charlie nodded and Draco went on, “That was then. I can assure you I’ve changed, Charlie. Ginny sees that.”
“I’m not one to judge, Draco,” Charlie responded. “I didn’t know you before, but I can tell from tonight that you’re not the person I’ve heard about. You do something for Ginny that I, nor the rest of my family, haven’t been able to do. She’s been a different person since Harry’s death. Usually, we can’t say his name without her leaving the room, but you helped her with that tonight. She just continued on as if nothing was wrong.”
Draco looked away from Charlie, not knowing what to say. Charlie looked away from Draco too, giving him a moment to himself. “I never expected to see Ginny, unless at a Quidditch game. I was baffled when I met her in the Three Broomsticks, and completely surprised when I found out that she was working at Hogwarts. From the moment in the Three Broomsticks to now, she’s changed.”
“I can see that,” Charlie responded as he nodded. “I’m assuming you know about her problem?”
Draco nodded. “I’m part of the reason of why she’s here…. I felt terrible when I went to McGonagall, but my first attempt failed. After I talked to McGonagall about it, she contacted your parents and things went from there.”
“Well, I thank you. I’m sure my whole family will,” Charlie replied. “She’s starting to become the girl I knew beforehand.”
“Don’t expect a complete return, Charlie,” Draco started. He then paused as a quiver of anger ran through his body. Charlie looked at Draco and noticed the change in Draco’s stiff posture and the look that overcame his face. Within a moment, Draco recomposed himself and continued, “I believe a part of her died when Harry did, and she may never get that back. We have to accept it because there’s nothing she, or we, can do about it….”
“She said the same thing to me in the first week she was here,” Charlie said. “I suppose as her brother I just don’t want to see it.”
“That’s completely understandable.”
“You’re good for her, Draco,” Charlie said after silence fell between them. “It seems as if you actually want to be there for her, be in her life, and not just after her money. You’re different than a lot of blokes she’s been involved with.”
“Thank you for that, Charlie, I appreciate it,” Draco replied as he looked at Charlie.
“Should we be getting back? I’m sure we’ve made her a complete mess,” Charlie said as the sun had set and the sky was dark.
“Sounds like a plan.”
The two of them walked back to the house to find Ginny standing in the doorway, leaning against the doorframe with her arms crossed, biting her lip. Charlie moved past her with a smile and Draco wrapped his arms around her, kissing the side of her head.
“You guys were gone for a while,” Ginny said as she moved out of Draco’s grasp.
“Just talking,” Charlie said. “It’s getting late, I better get to bed. It was nice meeting you, Draco.”
“You too, Charlie,” Draco responded.
Charlie then walked down the hall to his bedroom. As his door closed, Ginny rushed to Draco and kissed him, her arms wrapping around him. “I’ve been wanting to do that the whole time,” she whispered as she pulled away from him.
“Well, why didn’t you?” Draco questioned as he kissed her again quickly.
“Not in front of Charlie!” she exclaimed.
He chuckled and shook his head. “You sure are something else.”
Ginny grinned and began kissing him again. After a few minutes, Draco pulled away from her, his arms still around her waist, and said, “I should probably get going. You have an early day tomorrow and I have to plan what potion the classes are going to create.”
“I don’t want you to leave,” she pouted as her hands moved up his chest.
“I know,” he whispered as he kissed her forehead. “We’ll see each other soon, and I’m sure you’ll be back at Hogwarts very soon.”
“I hope so,” she responded as she moved up and kissed him again.
He kissed her back and then pulled away, moving away from her body and towards the door. “I’ll see you soon, alright? Write to me and let me know how you are.”
“Will do,” she smiled.
He nodded with a small smile and then closed the door. Ginny stood looking at the door, the smile still on her face. When she heard the crack of him Apparating away, she started to her bedroom. When she reached the hallway and was about to walk into her room, Charlie’s door opened and he looked at her.
“You really like him, don’t you?” Charlie questioned.
“Very much,” she answered as she nodded with a smile.
“I’m happy for you, Ginny, I really am.”
Ginny walked over to Charlie and gave him a hug. He hugged her back and then asked, “So, are you taking him to Bill and Fleur’s Sunday?”