|SIYE Time:14:37 on 17th March 2018|
My Knight, My Harry
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Genres: Angst, Fluff, Romance
Summary: Taken From Chapter 34 of Deathly Hallows - The Forest Again. Ginny reflects on the one man in her life. PARTNER TO "MY ENDINGS ARE NEVER HAPPY."
Hitcount: Story Total: 8033; Chapter Total: 1600
It's been too long! I'm so sorry. It's been quite a hectic year (might even be longer than that), but I'm back with a new chapter finally. If you go back and read the rest again, you'll see bits have been changed, added and improved, and all this is down to my wonderful beta Ginny Guerra, who has done such a good job. Thanks a lot.
I collapsed against the tree he had been sitting against a moment before and watched his retreating back. His steps were slow, perhaps hindered by the lack of energy from no sleep and little food. I saw his left arm raise and settle on his right, cradling it, his hand wrapped around the exact spot where I’d grabbed. His head was bowed down, staring at his feet as he walked, almost as though each step was a huge effort for him.
My own head fell forwards, unable to continue looking at my broken and battered Harry walking away from me. I placed my hands on my forehead and leaned on the floor in front of me, sobs wracking my body. I sat, making as little noise as I could whilst crying my eyes out, until he had entered the house, before I threw my head back and screamed in anguish, causing the birds to fly from the tops of the trees. I emptied my lungs and fell forward, panting slightly from the strain, before doing it again, releasing all of my emotion into these cries to whatever God there may be. Seven screams, emptying two full lungs for each one, before I collapsed forward, exhausted from the strain of everything, crying silently again.
It was a full hour before I could move again, and I slowly dragged my carcass off the ground and back to the Burrow. Darkness had started to settle in around me. All of my tears had dried up: I’d reached my limit long before and had instead been shaking with dry sobs. My body protested against every movement I made, tired from the exertion from the crying, and the length of time that I had been sat on the hard ground.
Entering the kitchen, I noticed without surprise that Harry wasn’t there. Everyone else was, though, settled around the table, glum looks on their faces. They all acknowledged my presense, but said nothing. I sat at the spare seat, and a mug of hot chocolate was placed in front of me instantly. I drank in silence, not hearing anything that the rest of the family might have said.
Instead, the only thing I was listening to was the banging upstairs. The sound of someone moving, and the echoes that reverberated around the halls, pounded into my eardrums incessantly. I wanted to move, but found myself rooted to the chair. If I didn’t know better, I’d say the twins – George – had placed a permanent sticking charm under me. No, this was no charm.
This was fear.
Fear of what I already knew to be true. I was scared of the broken Harry that I’d found by the tree earlier that day. I was scared of the look of anguish on his face as I touched him. He felt more than anyone who was sat in the kitchen with me, who were all oblivious to the young man’s feelings, too tied up in their own to notice. Everyone had lost a brother, or a son, but Harry had lost so much more.
Every person who had died in this war had been a brother, father, sister or mother to this boy. Not just Fred, who I knew would be at the top of his list, but Remus, Tonks, Sirius, Dumbledore, Cedric, his parents, even those lesser known to him, like the eccentric Colin Creevey, or some random muggle that he’d read about in the Daily Prophet. Harry was feeling for everyone, because that was what he was like.
This was what made him My Harry. My Harry was caring. My Harry was loving. My Harry took everyone’s problems and made them his own. But this time, everyone’s problems were just too much for My Harry.
I bolted from my chair, any idea of being glued to it being forgotten, all fear leaving my body. Around the table, eight heads jolted up with me, snapping out of their trances. Sixteen eyes followed me as I fled from the room.
This was My Harry that was in pain. My Harry was hurting himself, beating himself up over something that he could never hope to have changed. He was broken, battered and bruised, physically, mentally and emotionally. And I was sat at a table, drinking hot chocolate, moping because I can’t do anything about it.
To hell I can’t do anything!
The aches that plagued me just a few minutes before as a dragged myself to the house had suddenly left. Either that or they’d been forgotten. My mind had become just one single thought: be the girlfriend I’m supposed to be.
I ran through the hall and tore up the stairs, breaking any records that we ever created when we were kids, with free hearts and no burdens, back in better days, setting challenges for each other to try and beat. I didn’t bother to try and think who might have held this particular record, I was only concentrated on breaking the record in ‘getting to Harry before he does something stupid’.
I burst into the only room on the top floor: Ron’s, and nearly broke the door off its hinges. Harry stood inside, turned to face the newcomer with a look of shock that would have been funny if the situation hadn’t been so desperate. I could see why he looked surprised. He’d probably been absorbed in whatever he was banging around, oblivious to the world, when suddenly his girlfriend blasted her way into the room, red faced and panting from the trip up the stairs. Yeah, probably wasn’t the most relaxing of sights. Actually, knowing how I look after exercise, it was probably downright scary.
He seemed to regain his composure pretty quickly however, and he straightened up and turned to face me before I could even get any words out. It was then that I saw what he’d been bumping around the room doing.
On the bed sat a large case, the same I’d seen so many times being hauled on to the Hogwarts Express and shoved roughly up into the luggage compartment. I blanched at the sight of this, all admonishments and rebukes dying on my tongue. I simply stared, my eyes wide, not able to comprehend what was happening. Then it clicked.
It couldn’t be! My glance flicked up to his face. His face showed the pain he was going through, and how much it was hurting him to do what he was doing. But it showed a quiet resolve, firm and defiant. He was definitely leaving.
As this thought registered in my mind, his hand moved and grasped the handle to his trunk. His eyes caught mine for a brief moment, and I saw the intensity that passed through them. The same look he’d given me down by the tree.
My mouth finally started to work, but it was all too late. As I started to formulate some sort of reason for him not to carry on with his plans, he cut me off.
“I’m sorry,” he said again, and with that, he was gone with a loud crack of apparition.
I stared in shock at the space where he’d left. I don’t know how long I stood there, unmoving.
He actually left me!
I was brought out of my reverie by the sound of loud footsteps rushing up the stairs. Shaking my head, I found in myself a new sense of vigor and determination.
“No you don’t, Harry Potter,” I shouted at no-one, before bowling out of the room in the same manner I’d entered, nearly killing Ron as I passed him on the hall, ignoring his cry of “Ginny, where’s Harry? I heard someone Apparate”.
I took the stairs two at a time, barely touching each one as I raced down, all the while cursing the regime that had taken over the school last year, and how apparition lessons had been cancelled by the Carrows. Had I known the trick, I’d have popped out of existence and already been chasing my boyfriend.
Chasing him where, though? I had no clue where Harry would have gone, what he had planned for himself. He could have appeared somewhere in the heart of London and already been lost in a Muggle crowd for all I knew. I didn’t care. I barreled into the living room, to the only chance I had of leaving the house.
Quickly throwing some floo powder into the fire, I stepped into the green flames and yelled the first words that came into my head.
“Number Twelve, Grimmauld Place!”
As the flames whipped around me, I saw my family enter the room, before I was whisked away in a blur of colour.
Under normal circumstances, exiting the Floo would have been nice and easy for me. I’d done it hundreds of times, even for simple things like Flooing to Luna’s during the summer for a day. I knew how quickly the grate comes towards you, how to position your body as you fly out so that you land elegantly instead of careering out headfirst and taking out an unsuspecting person on the other side.
Today was different however. With the torrent of emotions flying through my body, my brain couldn’t seem to process the ‘elbows in, leading leg slightly bent at the knee, trailing leg tucked in a little in a mid-step’ position. Instead, I chose the second option: career out headfirst, but fortunately avoided hitting anyone on the way out.
Gingerly rising to my feet, I wondered how Harry ever got by not being able to Floo correctly, it certainly wasn’t my idea of a fun trip. The question was quickly forgotten though, and my resolve came back. Quickly glancing around, I found I was in the kitchen of the old headquarters, and the room was absent of any sign of Harry.
Actually, the room was absent of a lot, including tidiness. The place looked like it hadn’t been inhabited for months, and as though it had been raided and forcefully abdicated whenever the last person left. The table was upturned, cupboard doors ripped off their hinges, and what I could only assume was once food was scattered casually across the floor, left to rot and fester, some with chunks missing after being taken by whatever foul creature might have taken up residence since. I took in these things, briefly thinking of what might have caused such a mess, before striding towards the door to search the rest of the house.
If anything, the living room was in an even worse state than the kitchen. Instead of being upturned and scattered, furniture had been ripped to shreds and left in tatters over the floor. Black family items were strewn around, many smashed, broken, or otherwise bent into unrecognisable shapes. Standing in the opposite doorway, the one that led to the hall, was Harry, eyes wide, his trunk discarded on the floor.
Cautiously I stepped into the room, both careful not to interrupt the already destroyed room, and Harry’s trance-like state at the sight of his house. I managed to move to within a few feet of him without him showing any sign of recognition. I stopped, and gently whispered, “Harry.”
He started, as though I’d shouted at him, and then winced at the sudden movement. Quickly his eyes darted towards me, and then he turned his head away, looking anywhere but me. I watched silently as he seemed to fight with himself, and then begin to turn away from me.
“Going to run away again, Harry?” I shouted at him forcefully. He stopped dead in his tracks, his head bowed down at the floor, looking ashamed of himself.
“You can’t run anywhere, Harry, there’s nowhere I won’t follow you to,” I said just as powerfully, making sure every word sank in. “Try it if you want, go and leave!”
My challenge was one that I didn’t really want him to take me up on. It would be so much harder for me to use Floo connections to get everywhere, with the added fact I didn’t know where he’d Apparate to. But he didn’t move. He stood stock still, staring intently at his own feet. But I had to make sure he was going nowhere. If I let up, he could run when I wasn’t expecting it.
“Go on, Harry! Run away! Run away from everything. Just try to leave me out of this. I’ll follow you everywhere you choose. Privet Drive, Hogwarts, Diagon Alley. I’ll even go down into the fucking Chamber for you!”
The last statement made my breath hitch, but I realised that it was no less true. I saw it had an effect on him too. His shoulders seemed to drop at little, probably with resignation that he wasn’t going to win. I stayed silent, staring a hole into the back of his head, not letting myself lose concentration, so if he tried anything fast, I’d be able to take his hand and he’d have no choice but to Apparate me wherever he went.
Slowly, too slowly for my liking, he seemed to relax his muscles and turn towards me. It took all of my effort to resist running into his arms, but I remembered the pain he was in when I grabbed his arm not long ago. That moment seemed like hours ago as I looked at the broken man before me. At least he wasn’t running.
“Good, now let’s sort this out like adults, shall we?” I said, lowering my tone only slightly so I didn’t scare him, but kept the authority in my voice. He nodded his head once, reluctantly, still refusing to look at me. Seeing this, I took a deep breath and my anger dissipated instantly. I took a few tentative steps towards him, but he didn’t make any attempt to stop me or leave. When I reached him, I brought my hand up and cupped his cheek gently and lifted his eyes to meet mine.
“What’s happening, Harry? Let me help,” I said as soft as I could. I could see the tears begin to well up in his eyes, threatening to overflow.
“I don’t deserve your help,” his voice was raspy from lack of use as he spoke, and my heart broke. It wasn’t the words he’d spoken; I’d probably heard him say them a million times. It was the defeat behind them. This time, he believed it more than he ever had.
It took a second for me to compose myself before I spoke again, still in the calm voice, “Please don’t say that, Harry, you deserve all the help in the world.”
“I’m a murderer,” Harry said softly, almost in a whisper. “Murderers deserve locking up with the rest of their foul kind, not help.”
Finally, the root of what was causing all his grief. I let out a sigh of relief, now that I knew what was happening in his head. Apparently this was the wrong thing to do, as he exploded in front of me.
“You find it funny, do you? I’m a killer and you find it funny! What, is that not serious enough for you? How could anyone want to be around me? I’ve killed, Ginny – Stop laughing!”
I couldn’t help myself, the sigh of relief slowly built inside me, until I couldn’t help it. It started as a small smile, before growing into a chuckle, until by the end of his spiel I was outright laughing, which only seemed to frustrate him further.
“How can you find this funny? Why are you laughing at me!?”
At this, I couldn’t take anymore. I let go of some of the emotions that had been pent up inside me and shouted “Because it’s funny, Harry!”
& #8220;Listen to yourself,” I said, composing myself slightly, but still keeping the smile on my face, relieved that I at least had an argument against him now. “Just listen. Yes, Harry, you killed someone – Don’t interrupt me!” I stopped him as he started to open his mouth. It made me let out another small chuckle at how fast his mouth clamped shut. “You killed someone, but you aren’t thinking are you? Who did you kill, Harry?”
Harry looked hesitant, like this was some sort of trick question. Eventually, he said, “Voldemort”
“Voldem ort! Harry, you killed the most evil Dark Lord to ever have existed! This wasn’t John Smith out on the street, it was Voldemort!”
Harry pulled a face, still with a look of disbelief on his face. He seemed to contemplate things for a second, before he said, “It doesn’t change the fact I killed someone, I’m no different from him.”
“No, it doesn’t change that,” I told him, and I saw the look of pure horror cross his face, as though he’d been expecting me to disagree with some amazing argument that would win him over. I quickly continued, “But don’t you see, Harry? You’re beating yourself up for killing someone evil. Do you think Voldemort ever said to his Death Eaters –” I put on a very high pitched panicky voice, “’Oh no, I’ve killed someone, I’m such a terrible person.’ No, he didn’t, and he was killing innocent people.”
I gently rested my hand on his chest, careful to avoid any injury that he might have there. He made no sign that I’d hurt him, but seemed to be looking at me as though he’d never seen me before in his life, like I was some new fascination.
“So tell me, Harry, how are you like Voldemort? You’re a beautiful person, and you did what was right, and you’re blaming yourself. You’re probably the most amazing person in the world, and you’re the only one who can’t see it,” I said gently.
It took several minutes of us standing in total silence, just gazing into each other’s eyes. Somewhere along the line, I began to cry, but didn’t break eye contact. When his hand came up and brushed away my tears, my breath hitched. Seconds later, I found his lips pressed to mine softly.
Somewhere inside me, a fire was lit, and within seconds it was a roaring inferno. I closed my eyes, unable to keep them open any longer from the shocks of electricity that jolted through my body. I gave in completely to the kiss. It was full of all the emotions we’d both been keeping back for so long. I realised that somehow his hands had become tangled in my hair; our tongues had begun to dance with each other as though trying to merge as one and my body was being pressed against his and slowly moved back towards the wall. All the while our lips moved seamlessly against each other, perfectly fitting, managing to gauge, and even predict what we were about to do next, meaning each little movement one of us made was anticipated and met with the perfect adjustment by the other, like we’d practiced this for weeks.
I vaguely recall my back gently coming into contact with the wall behind me, and Harry’s hands slipping out of my hair, down over my shoulders, carefully skimming over my chest, causing a small moan to sound in the back of my throat, before resting on my waist, where he delicately slid them up my top and onto my bare skin. My own arms snaked their way up around his neck as I reluctantly pulled away from his kiss to look into his eyes.
It was then that I finally saw it, the thing I’d been looking for so long to see again, behind the traces of doubt and worry that he still held. The spark that made those emerald orbs look so beautiful.
And it felt like I was home, with My Harry, and I’m sure he felt the same way.
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