Chapter 1 : First Words
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James stared back at me, unrelenting.
“Please? Come on?” I pleaded. “Maa—mee,” I enunciated. Even then, nothing.
I groaned loudly, covering my face with my hands.
“Trying again, I see,” Harry said, walking into the dining hall. He picked James up from where he was sitting and started to play with him, squeezing his cheeks and drawing shapes on the tiny palms of James’ hands.
“What else can I do Harry?” I asked, picking my head up from my hands to look at him. “He’s two and a half years old and he still hasn’t spoken a word! Most babies have spoken by this point!”
“Give him time,” Harry said softly, now rocking James back and forth.
“I did! Two and half years,” I respond back to him, a bit hysterically. “What if he can’t talk at all? Is he mute?”
“Ginny, slow breaths,” Harry said concernedly, turning his attention to me. “And that’s fine isn’t it? We’ll just learn sign language or something of the sort. We’ll deal with it.”
“Yeah, yeah, you’re right,” I said to myself more than to him. I shook my head at my idiocy and walked up to Harry to take James from his arms.
I gave a soft look to James and poked his button nose. He giggled and tried to look cross-eyed at his nose. “You’re one tough cookie you know that?” I murmured to him. He gave me a knowing sort of smile that said, ‘I know.’
I sat on the floor frustrated, staring James—who was sucking on his thumb—down with a look that conveyed my ire.
I tried to get him to talk again and still no luck. Despite Harry’s comforting words, I can’t help but worry; it’s practically the entirety of my job description.
While I was simmering in my thoughts, the floo flared up with flashes of green. Out came Hermione, ever the epitome of grace. Sometimes.
“Hello,” Hermione greeted me, nodding her head slightly.
“Hi,” I replied rather moodily.
“James still not talking?” she questioned with a tilt of her head.
“How do you—“
“I see,” I said.
“This is only the tip of the bud, isn’t it?” Hermione said, never one to beat around the bushes.
I stayed quiet.
She hummed in thought, thinking about what to say.
“Maybe, you’re thinking that you’re a bad mother, or something along those lines. You think, just because you can’t get your child to talk, you won’t be able to be a good parental figure to him,” Hermione said softly.
I flinched inwardly, knowing she hit the nail right on top of the head. Her perceptiveness never fails to amaze me.
“I don’t think that’s a problem,” Hermione said truthfully, not waiting for my response. “You’ve only just begun and I think you’ll have plenty of practice to be a mother. You’ll learn, Ginny.”
I laughed into my hand, ever green with envy at her self-assuredness. It did help with my plight, and for that I was grateful.
“He’ll talk in due time. In due time,” Hermione said, trailing off at the end.
I hummed in acknowledgement.
“So, this is what being a mother brings you,” Hermione commented lightly, but more to herself than anything.
“Yep,” I replied anyway, popping the ‘p.’
“Fun,” Hermione said without a hint of discouragement at all.
The conversation ended there, and we both sat in a comfortable silence. Hermione knew I was not up for talking much and she respected that, thankfully.
Not long later, Hermione picked herself up to leave and I jumped up. “Wait! You came over so you must have wanted something. What is it?”
Hermione turned her head slightly towards me from where she was and answered, “You needed a friend and I came. That’s all.” Then she shrugged like it was nothing and left.
“Want to help me make dinner?” Harry asked me.
“I’ll burn the house down,” I replied immediately. I was working on a piece for the Quidditch column and simultaneously feeding James his food. A rather hard task to do if you ask me but you learn as you go I suppose.
Harry snorted loudly. “Doubtful. I won’t let you anyways.”
I rolled my eyes good naturedly. “Fine.”
We handed each other pots and pans—okay, more like I gave him pots and pans. Oh, and the occasional kiss too, which Harry laughed upon receiving each time.
We went on like this for a while, caught up in doing our own things.
I looked up and blinked. Harry craned his head and looked at me strangely saying, “Don’t call me that.”
“Wh—what?” I spluttered. “That wasn’t me you spoon!”
Harry furrowed his eyebrows in confusion. “Then who…”
“Daddy, can I have water?”
We both looked, understandably shocked, at James, who was currently staring right back at us with innocently wide eyes. We were both quiet for a bit and then proceeded to lose our shit, scrambling around.
“Oh my god—“
”—camera, we need a camera—“
“—no, video camera is what we—“
“Screw that, we’ll just remember,” I yelled out decisively. I grinned at Harry, who grinned back at me. I hugged him fiercely and we both laughed incessantly, although for me it was more out of relief.
“…just wanted some water…” I heard James whine.
I beamed at him and James smiled back. “Of course!”
“I thought it would be first word, not a first sentence,” Harry said, traces of giddiness still present.
“Me too! Although, you could say that his first word was ‘Daddy’ so you can have that pleasure,” I said. “What a nice surprise.”
I gave James his water and met him eye level. “Thank you.”
He gave me an all too cheeky smile, reminding me of his Dad. “…Welcome.”
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