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Chapter 7 : A Very Weasley Funeral
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The Burrow and Funerals
The return to the burrow was tempered by the sadness that they were one family member short. As soon as they had arrived George had disappeared into his room. Although there was relief that they back home it was hidden by the sadness that everyone felt in their hearts.
The usual load and boisterous noise that was usually associated with the burrow and the Weasley family was missing, the warming feeling it could give had all but disappeared. Harry had noticed it as soon as they had arrived. He had always felt welcomed when he saw the burrow, but now it felt distant almost like a sense of loss surrounded it. To Harry this was worse than being at Hogwarts. He felt guilty and would have apparated away right then if Ginny hadn’t squeezed his hand. She could also feel the change and was struggling to cope. She was close to tears and Harry seeing this pulled her into his arms, his chin resting on her head. He knew she wouldn’t want her tears to be seen by her brothers, it was something that she had always stuck to. She was still a stubborn Weasley even if she was the only girl. Harry could feel his own emotions threatening to break and buried his head into Ginny’s hair, the familiar flowery smell helping to calm him. His emotions were so close to the surface recently, without Ginny around him he would most likely be in the mental ward of St Mungo’s. Only 3 days had passed since the battle had ended and he had killed Voldemort. Only 3 days but the battle in Harry was still going on. It had calmed slightly after thinking about what Nick had said yesterday, it also helped that Ginny was constantly telling him it wasn’t his fault, but since arriving at the Burrow had turned unfavourable. All of his fears and worries were back on the surface. If he didn’t do something soon, he knew his fake façade of strength would crumble. He needed to be strong for Ginny, she would need his strength to get through this. A small but beautiful note reached their ears making both of them feel stronger. Harry smiled and both of them thanked Seraphina for helping. Saying he was surprised when he heard her answer back was an understatement.
“Sorry, what did you say?” Ginny looked at him.
“I didn’t say anything.”
“I said you are most welcome.” Harry looked at Ginny but she hadn’t moved, that was when he realised he hadn’t heard them out loud but in his head. He looked at Seraphina. “Yes it’s me you idjit. After all you’ve seen and a bond between a phoenix and its keeper surprises you?” Harry shook his head. What she said was true, hell he’d even believe in the crumple-horned snorkack if Luna showed up claiming to see one.
“So we can communicate by thinking?” he thought.
“I can always hear you, but until now have not had the strength to answer. The bond between us formed when I was born. My father chose you to be my partner so I know you are loyal, I am most proud to be the servant of the great Harry Potter.” Harry sighed, he didn’t want a servant, and being called great by anyone was more than he could handle. Why couldn’t he be just Harry? As he thought this he heard a giggle. He looked at Ginny to see her trying not to laugh.
“Have you two been ganging up on me?” At this Ginny laughed again.
“Oh Harry, you’ve been saying that since Hagrid rescued you from the Dursley’s , seven years down the line and they keep giving you new names. You’ll always be my Harry,” She whispered. Harry smiled and kissed her gently on the lips. Around her he could always be himself. Holding hands Harry and Ginny walked towards the open door of the burrow, feeling slightly happier than before.
Harry wiped the sweat off his brow and took a swig of water. Around him the continuous sound of digging could be heard. Using the grief of a lost brother the boys were helping to dig the grave that they would put Fred to rest. Ron had been the one who had suggested the idea. He had wanted to do it without magic. Soon everyone but Hermione, Ginny, Mrs Weasley and George were outside armed with spades and shovels. Digging the grave manually gave them a sense of purpose, at the moment it was just what they needed. Between the five of them the grave was dug fairly quickly and soon after went to shower the dirt off.
Although George had said he was organising the funeral no-one had seen him all morning. It was coming up to noon when Kingsley arrived. He was wearing his traditional black robes and had a sad smile on his face. He quickly spoke to Mr and Mrs Weasley before heading inside. If they had looked up they would have seen George watching from his bedroom window.
Harry and Ginny were sitting in her room talking quietly. A lot had happened to both of them over the past year, they were trying to catch up. Harry wanted Ginny to know the entire truth but he didn’t want to tell anyone more than once, it would be too hard. He was glad that she understood how difficult it was for him not to tell her. The conversation had lapsed and Harry was just holding Ginny close to him, his love for her making him feel warm. He was talking to Seraphina who was across the room, she had many views on the world and he found her conversation to be warming. He had just finished talking to her when he thought back to earlier. When they had arrived and he was talking to Seraphina Ginny had heard, but they weren’t talking out loud. He wanted to try something.
“Do you remember earlier when we were talking?” Ginny sat up and nodded. “Well we weren’t talking aloud and were not talking aloud now either.” Ginny’s eyes widened at the implications. “That’s impossible.” She said looking at Harry.
“Apparently not.” Ginny’s eyes widened.
“Your lips didn’t move! I can hear your thoughts. This is too weird.” Harry laughed.
“Shh calm down Ginny, I love you.” Ginny smiled as she returned the thought.
“This is cool, we can have whole conversations and no-one would even know.” Harry agreed and kissed her feeling the love and excitement radiating off her.
“We are gathered here today to celebrate the life of a young man whose whole life was dedicated to making people laugh. He was also a brave man who died protecting those he loved, to make sure of a better, brighter future.” Kingsley stood at the front proceeding over the funeral. The whole of the Weasley’s back garden was full of people. Many friends from Hogwarts were present along with the ever present red-headed Weasley’s. Mrs Weasley was being gently rocked by Mr Weasley, and Fleur was sobbing into Bill’s shoulder. Harry could feel tears rolling down his face but he ignored them, continuing to stroke Ginny’s hair as she cried for her lost brother. His eyes went directing to George who was standing next to the coffin. The look on his face was heart-breaking. It was a look of complete failure and loss. He had tried so hard to make the funeral not so sorrowful, WWW banners and streamers covered the garden, not to mention the fact that only Kingsley had been allowed to wear black. From afar the gathering might look like a quiet party but a closer look showed spilled tears down faces. George had tried to stand for a speech but he couldn’t get the words out, he had asked Harry do his part early. So Harry found himself at the front of the crowd feeling extremely nervous. He had planned his part carefully, promising only to result to it if George was unable to properly send Fred off.
“I remember the first time I ever met Fred. I was this skinny shrimp who had no idea how to get onto platform 9 ¾. He and George both offered to help me load my trunk onto the train. It was at this point that they figured out who I was. It was very disconcerting when they used their twin speak on me for the first time, it was like watching them throw a quaffle left to right and back again.” There was a small smattering of laughter. “Once the year started I found out that they were Hogwarts resident pranksters, but I also found out they were really great guys. When everyone thought I was Slytherin’s heir, they made a joke out of it, keeping my spirits up. They have always made people laugh, especially when that person needed to.” He silently waved his wand behind him to set the spells required. “Of course as soon as they found out I was a marauders son, the questions never stopped, they wanted to know everything about them. Of course I just directed them to Moony and Padfoot. I got an earful for that. All I know is that Fred was a great brother, a great friend and finally a master pranker.” With those final words the spells Harry set were ignited. Several people in the crowd found themselves multi-coloured, others with hair on their faces. The most impressive though were the fireworks that had started going off. Some were depicting scenes, the foremost being the one showing Delores Umbridge being chased by a firework dragon. It all ended with one word. Weasley.
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