Chapter 23 : The Ceremony
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Warning: This chapter contains violence and adult themes.
That night, Harry had strange dreams. There was somebody he cared deeply about. That he was in love with. They spent a lot a time together. He just couldn't see her face. Could it be Ginny? He didn't know. He remembered being at the Burrow. Playing Quidditch there and at Hogwarts. They were all happy memories. When he woke up the next morning, he told Kreacher about them. He thanked Kreacher again for what he did. There was someone that was special to him. More important than life itself.
Kreacher was happy. Master Harry was starting to remember. Kreacher snapped his fingers and a photo appeared. "Master Harry, Kreacher has kept this for you. He knew you were not ready to see it yet." Kreacher handed him the photo. It was of him and Ginny kissing after the Quidditch match. Their first kiss. More memories were coming back to him.
"Kreacher, it 's time to start getting ready. The ceremony starts at Noon." But he needed to go to Gringotts first. There was something he needed for today. "Kreacher, I have to go to Gringotts. I will be right back." He apparated directly into his vault, found what he wanted, and returned. It only took about five minutes.
"Master Harry, did you change your mind?"
Harry held out his hand. "No Kreacher. I got what I wanted. Please make sure I don't forget this."
Kreacher could not understand. The power of the Goblins prevented anyone from apparating into the vaults. He thought what his Master just did was impossible. He went to get out the clothes his Master was going to wear to the Ceremony. This time he chose a brown shirt and the green tie, to go with his dress robes.
At the Burrow, Ginny woke up early. Her dreams were filled with visions of Harry. The nightmares, which had plagued her for months, were gone. "Harry?" she looked around. She thought he was calling her name. She realized he must be remembering her. Them. The link between them which had been closed for so long was beginning to open. It was just a crack, but it was a start. She walked downstairs smiling.
Everyone looked at her. "I think Harry is starting to remember. I can feel it here." She held her hand over her heart. The golden glow that came from her and Harry was getting stronger. The others hoped she was right. They had been apart for far too long. One night, Hermione and Ron had explained to all of them about the mission Dumbledore had given them. And the sacrifice Harry had made. It was his love for them that gave him the courage to do it, and his love for Ginny which gave him the strength and the desire to come back. He was getting close to being himself again.
Ginny went up to get dressed. She chose the top she wore to the Wizengamot that matched Harry's eyes. At 11 they walked to the apparition point and went to the castle. Near the Quidditch pitch the field had been transformed. A large monument stood there, which was covered. Surrounding it was a large garden spread over several acres. There were walking paths thru it, with magical signs that appeared near each planting telling you what it was, and how to take care of it.
Near it was a raised platform with several rows of seats which were for the members of the Wizengamot. In front were hundreds and hundreds of chairs. The front rows were reserved. In the back were three big chairs for Hagrid, Grawp, and Madam Maxine. She was the head of the Beauxbatons Academy of Magic in France, and half giant also. There were also smaller seats for the house elves and the goblins, and a place for the centaurs. A large pavilion was there for the meal to follow.
The Weasleys found Harry standing near the covered monument with his head down. Ginny walked up and put her hand in his. Ron and Hermione followed. 'Thank you' he said thru his link to them. It was stronger and clearer than ever before. Ginny felt her heart leap. She let her love flow into him. Hermione took Harry's other hand. She did the same.
The rest of the Weasleys stood behind them, witnessing what they could not understand. Two of their children had golden auras, and the other two were silver. They could feel the hairs on their arms standing up, there was that much power being produced. Up in the castle, the picture of Albus was smiling. He could feel their immense power from here. The power of love was shining brightly thru them.
When the kids turned around, their glow faded, but did not disappear completely. You could still see it, especially in their eyes. Harry took Ginny aside. "I am starting to remember some things. I hope we have some time to talk after the Ceremony... I brought you something. I found this in my Family's vault. It is something I would like for us to wear today."
He was holding a small, flat box about six inches square. Ginny was trembling when she opened it. Inside were two things. One was a gold broach about three inches in diameter shaped like a lily. It had an emerald in the center. The other one matched it, but it was much smaller, maybe an inch in size.
"These were my parents. My Dad had these made for my Mom the day I was born."
Ginny looked up at him "Oh Harry..." was all she could say as she melted into him. They stood there like that for a few minutes, then pulled apart so they could put the gifts from Harry's parents on each other. Hand in hand they walked back to the rest of the family, not noticing the green glow coming from the stones.
Together, they walked over to find their assigned seats. Hermione, Harry, and Ron were in the front row. So were Ginny, Neville, and Luna. The rest of the Weasleys and Hermione's parents sat in the row behind them. All the rest of the members of the DA and their families were there too.
Soon, all the seats were full. They all stood for the members of the Wizengamot, along with Minister of Magic Shacklebolt and Headmistress McGonagall. When they were all seated, Kingsley got up to speak. "Members of the Wizengamot, fellow Witches and Wizards, and distinguished guests, thank you for coming today. We are here to honor those who have lost their lives in the Battle of Hogwarts, and those who died over the years of the struggle against evil. Even though Voldemort - Tom Riddle - is gone, we cannot let our guard down. Those who listen to the whispers in the dark, or who lust for power and glory, will never be completely gone. It is up to all of us here to make sure another Tom Riddle cannot rise to power." He paused. "We are here today to dedicate a park honoring those we have lost."
With a wave of his wand, the monument was uncovered. The names of all those who had lost their lives were there, along with their picture. It brought tears to the eyes of those in attendance. "Mr. Neville Longbottom and Miss Hannah Abbott were instrumental in creating all the beauty you see."
Everyone applauded Neville, who as sitting with Hannah. They were both blushing. "We are calling this memorial 'The Heroes of Hogwarts'. In addition, we will be breaking ground on the second part of the project." He waved his wand again. A three dimensional model was floating in the air.
"Several Wizarding families have donated towards the next phase of our plan. Just outside Hogsmeade we will be building a Hospital and an Orphanage. We wish to create a sanctuary to help all those whose lives were hurt by Tom Riddle. There are now many orphans because of him and his followers." Kingsley said, and sat down.
Headmistress McGonagall got up. "Technically, although this project is not on Hogwarts grounds, we will be encouraging students and faculty to volunteer to help. At the Orphanage, we will start the little ones learning about our world. They should be in good shape once they enter Hogworts. Also, I am pleased to say that Hogwarts will be ready to reopen on September 1. Most of the repairs will be completed by then." Everyone stood and applauded.
"We would like to recognize those who went above and beyond. We would like to award the Order of Merlin, Third Class, to the following: Grawp, Firenze, Dobby, Kreacher, and the members of the DA."
Each of them rose to accept their award. The crowd applauded. "Never before have any non-humans been given this award. Next, we wish to award those who led the resistance during this last year at Hogwarts. Will Ginevra Weasley, Luna Lovegood, and Neville Longbottom please step forward".
Blushing, all three of them went up to the podium. With a wave of his wand, Kingsley transfigured their robes so that a silver shield was visible there. They were hugged by the Minister and the Headmistress and sat back down.
Hermione felt something buzzing by her ear. It sounded like a mosquito. It landed on Ron's leg, and she realized what, or who it was. She grabbed Harry and pointed. He grinned, knowing what was going on. He waved his hand, and a glass vial appeared. When the bug went to fly away, the vial began to chase it around everyone's heads. Soon it was caught. The bug was bouncing around inside, trying to escape.
With a wave of his hand, Harry caused the vial to grow in size as the bug transformed. The crowd was surprised to see it had turned into ... Rita Skeeter.
The Minister looked down at Harry. "Thank you Mr. Potter for getting rid of that pest. We have all been bit one too many times by it."
Harry stood and did a mock bow. With a pop, it was transported to the Ministry, but not before she could be heard yelling "Harry Potter, I'll get you for this."
Once the laughter subsided, the Headmistress spoke again. "There are three now I would like to recognize. These three people gave up everything, sacrificed everything, to help defeat Voldemort. At the risk of their lives, they went on a quest. We are all pleased to see that they succeeded. Mr. Ronald Bilius Weasley, please come forward."
Ron got up and stood between Minerva and Kingsley. "Mr. Weasley, it was your courage that helped the three of you thru your ordeal. You faced your demons, and are all the better for it. We are pleased to honor you with the Order of Merlin, First Class." Everyone stood and applauded. He stepped back and stayed on the stage.
"Miss Hermione Jean Granger, please come forward." Hermione went up on the dais. "Miss Granger, you have been called the brightest witch of your age. It was your wisdom and brains that helped the plan to succeed. We are pleased to award you the Order of Merlin, First Class." Everyone rose and applauded. She stepped back beside Ron, taking his hand.
"Lastly, Mr. Harry James Potter, would you please come forward." Harry reluctantly stood and climbed up. He still didn't like the attention. "Harry Potter. The Boy Who Lived. The Chosen One. All of us know you didn't want any of this, but you stepped up. You didn't run away. You never surrendered. It is because of the great heart you have. You have always cared more for those around you than you have for yourself. We are very proud to award you the Order of Merlin, First Class." The applause was deafening.
"Harry, Harry, Harry" they kept chanting. The windows in Hogwarts were rattling. Hermione, Harry, and Ron stood together. The Minister waved his wand and three gold shields appeared. The crowd went wild again. They stood for pictures with Minerva and Kingsley. People started yelling 'speech, speech, speech...'
Kingsley held up his hands, and the crowd grew quiet. Harry stepped forward. "Thank you very much for these awards for all of us." He paused. "None of us asked for this. I don't know how many times I wanted to be Harry. Just Harry. But circumstances chose otherwise. All of our lives were affected by Tom Riddle. His lust for power resulted in the loss of many lives. I know now that it was not my fault. I spent many years blaming myself for all of this. But I had to realize, as all of us here do, that we needed to stand together. And we did. It was the power of love that helped all of us to defeat him."
While he was saying all that, he was looking at Ginny. He smiled at her. "It is our duty to remember those we have lost. I hope we never have to do this again." The applause began again, then began to trail off. People were pointing behind him. Harry turned to see a cloud far off in the distance. Even though it was miles away, he knew what caused it.
It was dementors. They still gave him a chill, even after he drove off dozens of them defending an injured Sirius. He had used the spell 'Expecto Patronum' to do this. Ron and Hermione were at his side. Ginny, Neville, and Luna soon joined them, wands drawn. Harry raised his right arm. "Ebullio Maxima" he cried.
The tattoo of his wand flashed. The golden glow around Harry became brighter as a bubble formed. It grew larger and larger. Soon it covered the area everyone was in, but it did not stop. It kept growing and covered the entire Castle and the nearby village of Hogsmeade. As each person came within the bubble, a feeling of calm came over them. The chill brought on by the approaching dementors was gone.
The sky grew black when the cloud of dementors arrived. Try as they might, they could not break thru Harry's defenses. Harry could sense how furious they were. They kept bouncing of the shield, trying to get at them. They were promised a feast, and they were not to be denied. All around him were flashes of light. Everyone that could produce a Patronus did. He saw Ginny's horse, Hermione's otter, Ron's Jack Russell Terrier, Luna's rabbit, Kingsley's lynx, and more.
Ron, ever the tactician, was trying form a plan with Kingsley to drive them away. "Harry, I'm not sure if there are enough of us to do this. Even if we can, I am afraid of where they will go. If they go somewhere highly populated, like London, the losses would be catastrophic. And you can't keep this up forever" Kingsley said.
Harry realized he needed to act soon. The dementor's rage was growing. Kingsley was right. At some point they would leave and take it out on others. He could not live with that. And there had to be hundreds. He closed his eyes. '2200 2600 2853' he muttered.
"What Harry? there's 2853 of them?" Kingsley whispered. No one spoke. There was no way they this could not become a disaster. The dementors sensed their change in attitude. They became even more infuriated at not being able to get to their prey. Harry knew it was time.
"Will all of you please get behind me. I will need you if this does not work." Turning away from them, he held out his left arm. There was a flash, and his wand tattoo appeared there also. "Expecto Patronum" he cried. His stag burst out of his left hand. They could hear and feel the clatter of its hooves as it thundered around the platform, then stopped in front of Harry.
They looked at each other. His patronus nodded, and leaped into the air. As it climbed, it grew bigger and bigger. When it burst thru the bubble, the dementors attacked it like a swarm of angry bees. Harry could hear Ginny's horse rearing, wanting to go into the battle. Thru his link, he told her, Hermione, and Ron to wait. As each dementor crashed into his Patronus, it disappeared with a flash of light. The stag kept circling in the air, and the dementors were drawn to it like moths to a flame. After a time, they were all gone. His Patronus made one last pass along the bubble, just to make sure it did not miss any of them.
When Harry could not see or feel any more dementors, he strode to the end of the dais. He held up both of his arms. Both of his wand tattoos flashed, and then disappeared. They transformed into a staff in his hands. Harry jumped down and walked over near the 'Heroes Garden'. He struck the ground with his staff and exclaimed 'Incarcerus Dementus Forem'.
A great chasm appeared along the edge of the garden, and the stag leapt into it. Harry raised his staff, and the ground closed. There was a blinding flash, and his Patronus reappeared in front of him, lowering his head. Harry gave him a hug. Ginny was at his side. Her horse Patronus touched it's nose to Harry's stag, and hers changed into a doe. They each returned to their Masters.
"Harry, that was incredible" said Ginny.
"Not incredible, brilliant" said Ron.
"What did you do to the dementors?" asked Kingsley.
"I used the power of the Patronus. Instead of driving them away, they were absorbed. All the evil was destroyed by the love in it, and what was left was returned to the earth." Off in the distance, Harry heard shouting. At the edge of the forest, he saw a large group of figures all dressed in black. Sunlight glinted off some of them.
"Death Eaters. Oh Harry, when will this end. I don't want to see anyone else die" said Hermione. Ron was holding her. She was crying into his chest.
"They must have been waiting for the dementors to do their work, and then they would take care of the rest. It was a good plan" said Ron. "What they weren't counting on was Harry. They would have taken out the entire Wizengamot, and all of us too."
Harry smiled. "Constant vigilance, right? That's what Mad-eye used to tell us."
The Death Eaters were approaching. Soon they would be close enough for the battle to start. Harry looked at them. There had to be over a hundred of them. "I have seen enough bloodshed to last a lifetime. No one else will die today, I promise you." He turned to Ginny with a smile. "Would you like to do the honors?"
She grinned. "What should I do?"
He looked deep into her eyes. "Take my hand." She put her left hand into his right. There was a flash, and a tattoo of Harry's wand appeared on the inside of her forearm. "Go ahead. Disarm them." She looked at him, then the last of Voldemort's army. She raised her arm. "Expelliarmus" she cried. The spell leaped out, her power boosted by Harry's. Their enemies wands jumped out of their hands, and landed at her feet. They were tied together, with an emerald green bow on top.
'Nice touch' said Harry through their link. Their foes stopped, unsure of what to do now. Many of them had knives and swords, and were determined to go down fighting.
"Imobulis Totalis" cried Ginny. They were all frozen in place. "Care to take a walk?" Ginny asked, taking Harry's hand. They, along with the Ministry officials, went up to the defeated army. Harry waved his hand, and the masks disappeared, along with their weapons. Three people stood out: Pansy Parkinson, Gregory Goyle, and Delores Umbridge.
"Lord Goyle, are you here to finish our discussion from the Wizengamot?" asked Harry. Goyle's eyes got bigger. It was the only part of him that could move.
"Well Delores, thank you for attending the ceremony" said Minerva. "I hope you are as pleased as I am at all the recipients. Especially the house elves, Grawp, and Firenze." Delores, who despised all those who were not human, was beside herself, but she couldn't talk. Her face turned red, and her eyes bugged out.
"Looks like she is going to have a stroke" said Kingsley. He waved his wand, and a glass cage formed all around them.
"Before you send them away, we have one final thing to. I want them to witness it" stated Harry. Thru his link, he asked Ginny, Hermione, and Ron to accompany him. The four of them walked over to where the ground had been broken open. Harry stuck his staff in the ground.
'Will everyone please grasp my staff?' he asked each of them. They each held it with their right hand. 'Close your eyes. Let the power flow from us into the staff.' All four of them did, and their bodies began to glow brighter. Their wand and sword tattoos flashed. There was no wind, but their hair began to whip around their heads. The air near them was crackling. The ground began to shake.
'Do not be afraid. We are going to perform a spell. One that has not been done for a long time. Ginny, you and I will say "Aureus Arbore Duabus." Ron, you and Hermione will say "Argentus Arbore Duabus." Ginny, are you ready?"
She shook her head yes. "Aureus Arbore Duabus" they exclaimed.
Hermione and Ron followed with "Argentus Arbore Duabus."
The ground convulsed around them. At opposite ends of what was the chasm, two trees, one gold and one silver, began to grow. In minutes, they were over 200 feet tall, and the trunks had a diameter of over 10 feet. Once finished growing, the closest branches seemed to reach out to each other and intertwine. Leaves began to sprout. The tree behind Ginny and Harry had bark that was golden brown, and dark green leaves with gold trim. The other tree behind Hermione and Ron had bark that was silver grey, and it's leaves were light green with silver trim.
Slowly, the four of them let their energy return to normal. They opened their eyes, and looked at what their spells accomplished. Hermione waved her wand, and the Death Eaters masks, along with their weapons, were transfigured into benches under the canopy formed by the branches of the trees.
Many people approached them and the trees, which had a soft glow. The centaur Firenze spoke first. "Harry Potter, the stars foretold today would be a momentous one. You have brought back what has been gone for thousands of years. 'The Elder Trees'. The original descendants of the Tree of Life. We, who live in the forest, are grateful for this." Firenze held out his arm. He gave a 'warrior's handshake' to all four of them. "I see you now possess the powers of the old ones. It is indeed a momentous day." Firenze turned and walked away.
Hermione turned to Harry. "Who are the old ones?"
Harry grinned "I don't know. I guess some 'research' might be needed." She hugged him, knowing that he was teasing her about her love of books and spending time in the library.
'At least she has something, or should I say someone, to distract her now' Ginny said in her link to Harry.
'Hey, we heard that' yelled Hermione and Ron back to them. They were all laughing at that point. People were looking at them funny, but they didn't care. In the years to come, they would have many, many 'inside' jokes.
A loud rumble was heard. Harry pretended to look up at the sky, knowing it was Ron's stomach.
"Errr ... Is anyone else hungry?" Ron asked. He turned to Hermione. All those around them laughed with them, and made their way towards the pavilion for the feast. They kept looking at the trees, noting how good it felt to be hear them.
* * *
Callista Goyle walked into the pavilion. She was furious. Their plan didn't work. Her son was captured. Muggles and mudbloods were everywhere. Half breeds had been honored. It turned her stomach. She had no desire to eat. In the far corner, she saw Lord Greengrass. He was sitting there with a blank stare. He was in shock.
"Did you see what happened?" she asked him as she sat down next to him.
Lord Greengrass looked at her. He despised her. She was the most foul and uncouth woman he had ever met. What he hated the most was her uncanny ability to point out the obvious.
"Oh yes. I saw it. And heard it. And felt it." He was shaking his head. He was such a fool. He had let those idiots Goyle and Parkinson convince him this plan would work. They knew Potter and the rest. They would be terrified of the dementors. Their fears would overwhelm them. Even if not, the dementors would outnumber them. The army in the woods would mop up any survivors. The Dark Lord would be avenged.
He should have followed his instincts. In the Wizengamot, when Goyle challenged Potter, he could see a glimpse of his power. His gut said to cancel the plan , but his arrogance took over. An army in the woods. Thousands of dementors overhead. Against who? The old fools of the Wizengamot and Potter and his rag-tag band of kids. They could not foresee how strong Potter had become.
"How are we going to stop Potter now? And what about the others? Did you hear everyone? They are calling them the 'silver-and-gold-quartet'. The Dark One will not be happy" she grimly said.
Lord Eugene Greengrass shuddered. When he went to meet with the Dark One in that icy cavern, he was confident. His foes were demoralized. Yes, the Dark Lord was gone, but both sides had suffered great losses. If they struck soon, and hard enough, they would win. The Dark One agreed to let him use his dementors. All of them. Overwhelm the opposition. Destroy every last trace of them.
And now his servants were gone. Eugene knew there are many others who sleep, waiting for their master to call. They would not be powerless. He heard the noise getting louder. The 'gold-and-silver-quartet' entered. The crowd was cheering them. 'Congratulations on the awards. The two beautiful trees. The great victory today. We can all live in peace, now that the last of Voldemort's followers are gone.'
Even though he hated them, he could feel his mood lighten. They had that effect on the people near them. Their power was unmistakable. And now there are not one but four of them. He could do nothing at this time. He needed to prepare to go and see his master. He hoped he would be alive afterwards. And he was glad he put a charm on those idiots so no one would know who else was involved.
Everyone went into the tent for the feast. Ginny didn't want to let go of Harry. He didn't seem to mind. They talked and laughed, and cried for those they lost. The four of them went out for a walk. Near the monument they saw Kingsley and Minerva. They were both waving their wands, and a model of the 'Heroes' complex appeared. They could see the Manor house, and the Hospital and Orphanage. It still left plenty of land for the kids to play on, or to build additional buildings. "Harry, have you thought any more about what we discussed?" asked Kingsley.
"No, I'm sorry. I have been kind of busy" Harry replied.
"Well the offer is for all four of you, along with Mr. Longbottom. You could start the Auror program immediately if you like" said Kingsley.
Minerva turned around. "Auror program? But what about school? They haven't finished yet. They still need their NEWTS."
Kingsley said "They could do both at the Ministry."
'What do you think?' asked Harry
'I want to go back and finish' said Hermione.
'I think so also. Mom will kill me if I don't' said Ginny.
'The Auror thing sounds good. I'm not too worried about Mom' said Ron.
'You better be. She'll kill you' said Ginny.
'Hmmm. Ginny, if you go back, I will too' said Harry.
'OK,OK I will too, but on one condition. We all play Quidditch' said Ron.
'What? You know I don't play Quidditch' said Hermione.
'Right then. You can be coach. Trainer. Mascot. I just want you there' said Ron.
'All right. Deal' said Hermione.
Their conversation was broken by the Headmistress. She had snapped her fingers under Ron's nose. "I said, Mr. Weasley, what do you want?"
Kingsley laughed. "You were doing one of those talking without talking things again, weren't you?" They all nodded.
"Yes we were" said Harry. "Kingsley, I'm sorry but right now we all feel like returning to Hogwarts would be the best thing for all of us. It will also give us the time to decide our futures. Personally, I also want to make sure our 'Heroes' project starts off right. We have a responsibility to take care of here."
Kingsley looked at the four of them. "I understand completely. You know I am always available to talk about the Aurors, as well as any other Department at the Ministry. And I'm sure we will have meetings here regarding the 'Heroes' project. I believe the first one is next week, so we can come up with a final design we can discuss with builders. We will owl you when we get closer."
He and Minerva smiled and walked away. She had a big grin on her face the whole time. With these three on her Gryffindor team, they should win the House Cup with ease. The foursome walked away from the monument to sit near the trees. Harry and Ginny sat against the golden tree, just like they did in the hot tub. Ron and Hermione did the same with the silver one over a hundred feet away. Harry was holding Ginny tightly. He didn't want to let go of her either. He knew she wanted to talk again about that day in the Great Hall. He moved her long hair over and kissed her neck.
'Umm that feels good' she said thru their link.
'Oi... that's my sister' said Ron.
'Never you mind' said Ginny 'and keep your hands where I can see them.
'He can put his hands wherever he wants' said Hermione.
'Oh no he can't' said Harry. 'You're my sister.'
They all fell on their sides laughing. "I guess we need to work on the link thing" said Ron.
"No we don't. I need to keep my eyes on you two" said Ginny in her best impression of her mother. They all fell over again. She turned to look at Harry.
"Yes I know. Now that I am starting to remember things, we need to talk." He mover her hair on the other side and started behind her ear again.
"I can see you are remembering" she purred. "HEY are you trying to distract me?" she asked him.
"Why, whatever do you mean Ginevra?" She mentally elbowed him in the ribs. She HATED that name.
"Ow that hurt" he said, rubbing his side.
'Let me see if this helps' she said.
'Umm that feel nice' said Harry. It felt like she was kissing him there.
'We can hear you' said Hermione and Ron giggling.
'Bugger off' said Ginny to them.
'OK we better stop now' said Harry.
'HEY WE SAID WE CAN ...'
"Alright already" said Harry as he pulled Ginny closer to him. He knew this would be difficult for her. Yes, she had apologized to him before, but since he didn't understand why, it was important for her to do it again.
"Harry, I don't know why that happened. This last year has been Hell on all of us. I think it was the not knowing that was the worst. The Carrows used to torture us that way. You're captured. You're dead. You changed sides. But we all knew" she put her hand over her heart "that none of it was true. It was just the 'what if's'. How could we go on if any of it did turn out to be true? So yes I was angry. No, not at you. At the situation we were all put in."
She had her head buried in his chest. She had turned herself while she was talking, and was clutching his shirt over his heart. His arms were wet from her tears. "When...when we saw you, lying at his feet, a part of me died. I didn't want to go on. Ron had to hold me back. I wanted to take Riddle apart piece by piece. Then everything happened, and we were fighting everywhere. Luna, Hermione, and I started battling Bellatrix. She almost got me. Then Mom came up. I've never seen her so mad. You saved Mom, didn't you? I told her and Dad that. I recognized your shield from the DA lessons. You were the only one powerful enough to stop him, he was so mad. I think you were already starting to get stronger. As soon as the horcrux was destroyed."
Harry held her tighter. "I didn't want to see any more of my family get killed." Ginny held him while he cried. "It was the most difficult thing I have ever done. Walking past you. Going into the forest, knowing that I was going to die. That I might never see all of you again. Hoping that by my dying it would allow Voldemort to be killed. If Neville could kill the snake, then Voldemort would be vulnerable." He paused. Two butterbeers appeared by them, and two by Hermione and Ron.
'What are these for' asked Hermione.
'I heard snogging is thirsty work' said Harry.
'Are you two OK?' asked Ron.
'We will be' answered Ginny.
Ginny settled back against Harry's chest. "You must hate me." She clutched his cloak, burying her head there. It was the moment of truth for her. Now that he remembered, what would he do?
"I don't hate you. I love you Ginny." She was shaking. 'No, he is just saying that. It can't be how he really feels.'
"Ginny, look at me." She shook her head no, her face still buried. Harry lifted up her chin. "Ginevra Molly Weasley. There is nothing you can say, nothing you can do, that could make me hate you. I love you." Harry kissed her gently, then more passionately. They kissed for a few minutes.
She snuggled in closer to him. "You can't mean that. I'm a mess." Harry waved his hand, and a mirror appeared. It was the one from his parent's vault. "Look in the mirror. What do you see?" He conjured her a handkerchief.
She wiped her eyes, and looked at herself. She could see her face, then Harry's next to hers. They both slowly changed, growing older and older. She looked away from the mirror to look at him, then back at the mirror. It was back to the way they are now. The mirror disappeared. "Harry, did you see what I saw?"
"I'm not sure what you saw. When I look into your eyes, I see us. Our future together. I love you Ginevra Molly Weasley." They kissed again.
"And I love you, Harry James Potter."
Author's Note: I want to thank everyone for all their positive reviews of my first story. And for helping me to catch some of the spelling errors I have made ( like spelling Hogworts, not Hogwarts).
When I began this, I had no idea where it would take me. I remember being in school, wondering what to say to fill a paragraph.
Needless to say, this is a little longer than a paragraph. As I worked on this, I kept thinking that we were left with 19 years, and very little clues of what took place in between. So I created my version of what might have happened when the Deathly Hallows ended.
As I was writing this, more and more ideas popped into my head. They began to fall into the story, and so it does seem like I am teasing you about things to come. Or at least other characters, both good and bad.
While I was waiting for each chapter to be reviewed ( And I apologize for not understanding that they look at each chapter individually. Or that it can take up to a week waiting for each chapter to be validated. I wrote the whole thing first, thinking I would be submitting it all at once, hence the 'completed' story) I started on 'ARE ALL MEMORIES GOOD?: Book Two. It starts immediately where Book One leaves off. I don't want to say any more, or I would be teasing. As of this moment, I am 2/3 of the way thru it (actually, I am on Chapter 33 as we speak). I have discovered there are even more people in the World JKR has created, and we would all be remiss if we did not thank her for it. She has inspired all of us amateur writers with her wit and wisdom.
Thank you again for all the encouragement. I plan on plugging away on Book Two until it is completed, submitting each Chapter after the last has been validated. And if these ideas do not all make it in, I promise Book Three will follow.