Hannah Abbott stood in the window looking out at the park across the street from Harry and Ginny's house. In it she saw people walking their dogs and pushing strollers. She wondered what it would be like to be doing that.
A pair of strong arms wrapped themselves around her. She leaned back, grateful for his warmth. She missed it when she got up to look outside wondering what all the noise was. He pulled her hair long blonde back and kissed her neck, sending shivers down her spine and back up again.
"Last night was magnificent" he whispered in her ear. It made her turn around and pull him close, kissing him again. He didn't have the tops of his pajamas on (she has confiscated them when she got up not seeing hers nearby) and held him as close as she could.
"Yes it was" she replied not wishing this moment to end. She felt him start to shake, like he was trying not to laugh. "What's so funny?"
"Us. When I talked to Ron I wanted to ask his opinion. I wanted you to move in with me but not to ... "
"Do what we just did" Hannah finished as she grinned too. "I asked Ginny and Hermione the same thing. I was worried you would think less of me if I asked the same thing. Some girls go after guys for their money, and I didn't want you to think that of me."
"I don't. And I was worried that now you are dressing the way you are, you would think I was only after you to get you in bed" he said.
"And now that you have?" she asked, batting her eyelashes at him.
"And now Miss Hannah Marie Abbott I find that I am in love with you. I think I knew it before, but now I am certain of it."
"Neville Frank Longbottom you don't know how happy that makes me! I love you too, and I was so worried you would think less of me for what we just did. So many girls at Hogwarts talked about it, trying to sleep with someone so they would love them."
"Then I feel very sorry for them. That they would think so little of themselves that they would be forced to do that. No I thought you were special for a long time, and I knew you were beautiful even when you wore those clothes three sizes too big. I told Ron how fortunate I am that you would want to be with me. He feels the same way about Hermione, as does Harry with Ginny."
"Did Harry tell you that?"
"In a way yes. Ron and I were talking and made a pact to treat each of you the best we can, and to watch out for each other If we start to mess up. Harry squeezed our hands, showing us he agreed."
"That's incredible Neville! I can't wait to tell Ginny."
"Tell her what?"
"That I have found the man of my dreams, just like she and Hermione have" she replied as she pushed him back onto the bed.
* * *
Hermione and Ron stood in the far corner of the Leaky Cauldron, concealed under Harry's invisibility cloak, Because Ron was so tall he had to stay hunched over or his feet would be visible. Hermione kept rubbing his back to try and help, but she knew it still bothered him. "Are you all right?" she whispered.
"Yes" he answered, hoping Kingsley would be on time. Sure enough he was, walking into the room Tom had instructed him to use. Seeing no one following him they moved up to it. Hermione silently cast the 'Homeninum Revelio' charm to see if anyone disillusioned had slipped in, and when she was sure they didn't took off the cloak and stepped inside closing the door behind them.
"Kingsley" Ron said as he sat next to Hermione at the table across from him.
"Minister thank you for helping us" Hermione told him.
"It has been my pleasure. Where would you like to start?" he asked.
"I believe we only had one thing to discuss today" Ron replied in an attempt to show why they were here.
"Your parents Miss Granger. I have a picture here taken in Auckland. A Monica and Wendell Wilkins are dentists and the immigration records show them entering Australia at the time you would have sent them. Are these your parents?"
Hermione stared at the picture taken through a window. It showed her Mother with hair tinted from time in the sun, and the well tanned face of her Father. He had grown a moustache which was almost blonde, and his hair had streaks of grey in it now. 'I bet they were caused by me' she speculated. "Kingsley these are my parents. When can I see them?"
The Minister smiled for the first time. 'One job down' he thought. "Very soon. We will need to arrange for you to travel there and restore their memories, since you were the one who cast the memory charms since there are so many different combinations. Shall we say in a couple of weeks?"
"August 15th works for us" Ron replied. Hermione squeezed his hand under the table, grateful he was volunteering to go plus remembering his sister's Birthday.
"Excellent. Plenty of time to set up port keys and make travel arrangements to return" he replied.
"The second part should not be a problem. We may want to spend some time there before returning, and Hermione's parents may wish for some help with their practice" Ron replied. He politely told Kingsley they would return when they wished.
"Of course. Australia is a beautiful Country" the Minister replied. 'So they are still cautious. I would be too under the circumstances'. "I do have a request to make, and if you feel I am out of line when I am finished please say so and I promise I will not bring it up again." He saw Hermione nod, knowing he helped her so she should at least listen.
"The day you left Hogwarts was very traumatic for everyone, especially the Headmistress. She has been under a lot of strain for a reason you were not aware of. The Board of Governors, which administrates and funds the School, has essentially disappeared. Most are dead or gone fearing Voldemort has not really left. As a result there is a financial crisis. It appears the School will be forced to close its doors forever."
"Kingsley that's terrible!! What can we do to help?" Hermione asked.
He saw the concern and fear on their faces, and was convinced they knew nothing about this. "Fortunately the morning this misunderstanding happened a solution was found. An unknown person gave to the School 10 Million galleons, enough to run it for years."
"How much?" Ron asked his face now as white as snow. He knew Harry had inherited money but it can't have been this much.
"A lot. More than enough to meet the needs for years to come" he replied, convinced they were not aware of this either. "Minerva got the good news that morning as was looking for you to share it with when she found out you had just left, believing she wished you to go. Far from it. She has stood up for you, kept the press away, and even tolerated the incessant letters your Mother sent. To be honest you owe her an apology for the way you left, not even thanking her for staying there" he gently scolded them.
"Minister you are right. We were so hurt at the time we left without saying goodbye. Ron we have to tell Ginny this. I'm sure she will feel like we do about this."
"Absolutely. Please let her know how badly we feel, and will try to arrange a meeting as soon as possible" Ron stated. "And thank you for not trying to push the issue about our Family. This has been difficult for all of us."
"Speaking of that we have had some new developments we want to discuss with you. If we can do this at the same time it would be good, and then it will be up to you how much contact you want."
"Thank you Kingsley" Hermione replied as she hugged him.
* * *
The reunion turned out to be easier than expected. Kingsley, Minerva, and Augusta Longbottom (who was working behind the scenes to make this possible) were invited over. After much hugging, apologizing, crying, and more hugging the issues were resolved. Ginny acted surprised about the financial problems, and even more that someone helped.
"And now to what I mentioned last night. I wish Albus was here to help us understand it better" Kingsley told them.
Ginny got up and went into her office, returning with a desktop sized portrait. "I believed you asked for me?" Albus Dumbledore inquired.
"Where did you find this? It has been missing for over a year" a surprised Minerva asked.
"The dungeons at Hogwarts. I came across it last year while searching for another secret passage out. He helped me a lot, giving me someone to talk to while my ... Harry was gone" she replied, almost letting it slip about their true relationship.
"Hello. Sorry we're late" Hannah and Neville said as they entered the room, closely followed by Harry and Ginny. Harry walked over and turned on the wireless to hear a breathless Lee Jordan on his radio show.
"That's right folks! I am here to say that I saw Harry Potter with my own two eyes!! He, Ginny Weasley, Hannah Abbott, and Neville Longbottom were in the Leaky Cauldron having lunch celebrating their mutual Birthdays. Hannah's was yesterday, Neville is today's, and of course Harry's is tomorrow. Ginny's will be soon, on August 11th, but why not celebrate twice I suppose? I went there to get some lunch before work and saw them leaving through the floo headed I believe to the Longbottom's. I raced back with my recording equipment and this is what I captured."
"So when did they arrive? How long were they here? I am asking the owner of the Leaky Tom."
"Several hours ago. They wished for a private place to celebrate, and of course I provided it. He can sure laugh a lot for being dead" Tom said laughing himself. "Treacle tart is what they had to celebrate with. Everyone who comes today sets a free slice, in honor of the Prophet being wrong. But then what else is new? They said Voldemort really wasn't alive, then he wasn't dead. I'm cancelling my subscription as of today."
"So there you have it folks. Our hero Harry Potter is alive, having been seen by dozens of people. I will attempt to contact the Prophet for a response, specifically Rita Skeeter for her reaction. Please stay tuned for more information."
Dumbfounded and amazed people stared at Harry. Then at the Harry in the bed. Both had huge smiles on their faces. Both Ginny's went to kiss their Harry's when something happened. The pair who were standing slowly morphed into Kreacher and Winky who were now smiling and holding hands. The other couple was smiling equally well, but lying in the bed.
"Kreacher came to us with the idea of how to show everyone the truth. Well not the truth but to show them the Prophet was wrong. The Elves can transfigure themselves like we can but better" Hermione told them.
"I asked my Uncle to set up a private room to celebrate in, and that a surprise guest will be there. He began crying as soon as he saw Harry. He ran over and hugged him, happy that he really was alive" Hannah replied crying herself.
"So now we have given them something to talk about. And not to give up hope, or to believe everything you read. You would think people would know that by now" Ron added. "Hi Luna."
"Hi. Sorry I couldn't get here sooner. I wanted to be with Daddy when the wireless came on. He was so happy, saying he never believed it anyway. He is resting now so I have a few hours" she said.
"Excellent. You all did a magnificent job. I am very proud of all of you. Mrs. Fleur Weasley brought something to my attention last month as a possible cause of what happened and I have been spending a lot of time thinking and discussing this with the previous headmasters. In 1918 after the First World War ended some things happened to the returning soldiers. Most had recurring nightmares about the battles, reliving losing their comrades in arms. Still others experienced ones involving the guilt at killing their enemies, even though they knew it was situations of kill or be killed. We all know how this has affected all of us, Harry most of all."
Ginny looked at her husband who she could see was listening intently. She propped up his pillows and was surprised to see him want to sit up straighter, so she grabbed the others from her side for him. He reached out to take her hand as Albus continued.
"A small number of soldiers from both sides began acting differently. Fierce anger would take them and they began to act very aggressively. Fights and arguments broke out, oftentimes resulting in serious injury or even death. One common denominator was that they remembered little of their actions and were very surprised to discover what they did. Many took their own lives afterwards out of guilt. Years later a term was coined for it called P W R, or Post War Rage. While I am not certain of it, this may be the case here.
The special room at Hogwarts allowed us to see the collected memories of what took place. Kingsley and Minerva, along with Arthur, Molly, Bill, Fleur, and Charlie saw for the first time everything. Somehow I myself was allowed to also, and I was then able to share them with the other Headmasters. After viewing them most if not all agreed, remembering other wars during their tenures and hearing stories. I was alive during the First World War and remember them myself, so I can attest to it personally."
"Albus do you think this is the case here?" Augusta Longbottom wondered. "After the Second World War I remember seeing things in the London Daily Mail. Stories would be published that fights broke out in local pubs for unknown reasons. Usually at least one veteran was involved."
"At the time the governments did not want to use the term PWR, fearing a backlash against them or the soldiers who did nothing wrong themselves. Most were trying to build new lives for themselves, or returning to the loved ones they left behind."
Hermione was staring at Harry. 'Is this another form of guilt he has?' he saw Ginny shaking her head no at her, knowing this time it has nothing to do with Harry.
"While we cannot be certain this is a very distinct possibility. With no past record of violence, other than the Family tendency to lose their composure, we have an explanation which covers all the known facts. If we were meeting with the Wizengamot I would argue this to be what happened, recommending treatment and counseling not Azkaban."
Everyone turned to look at Ginny and Harry. "Headmaster I don't know. Yes I know you saw our memories, but to have been there is another thing entirely. They were happy when it was happening. You could see it on their faces, enjoying it as it took place. We need to think more on this before I can agree" Ginny replied.
"Of course. This is a lot to take in, and you need time to discuss it" Kingsley answered. He and Minerva left to give the Weasleys an update, and to give them time to talk. Hannah and Neville walked their Gran to the floo. "Gran we have something to discuss when we get home" Neville told her.
Augusta smiled at them. Both had sent their patronus to her when they went upstairs last night. "I'm so happy for you two" she said as she hugged them.
"You can tell?" Hannah asked surprised.
"Definitely. You can see it in your faces, and in your magic. When the patronuses arrived yours had changed into a lioness. Only very strong emotions can cause that to happen" she replied.
"Thanks Gran" they both said, grateful not only that she understood but she approved of the change in their relationship.
* * *
The conversation in the bedroom became very heated. "Yes those are our memories but that's not the same as being there" Ron emphatically said.
"Yes I know but if this is true then they weren't themselves. Isn't that right Headmaster?" wondered Hermione.
"I wish I could help you more in this. What you experienced is worse than the War. How can you look at them the same after this? No matter what you decide things have changed in your relationship with them" Albus answered.
"Ginny I think Harry is trying to say something." Luna was pointing at Harry. All were so involved in the conversation to notice Harry, whose lips were moving but nothing was coming out. His face grew contorted with the effort.
"Yes Harry?" Ginny asked as she leaned closer, putting her ear to his lips but no words came out.
Harry opened his hand and his wand flew to him from the nightstand. This made him relax and he touched his temple drawing out the silvery wisps of a memory. It swirled around like a smoke ring and floated next to him. Two more times he did this, and then touched each one with the tip of his wand to make two copies. One set drifted back into his head and disappeared. The second set moved to his chest and melted in.
He held his wand out and the third set landed on it, forming three smoky white rings. He smiled as he touched Ginny's forehead with it and saw them go in.
Ginny's eyes closed as she leaned against Harry, falling into a deep sleep. His memories began with him being at a Quidditch match. She saw herself flying through the air, capturing the snitch ensuring a victory over Ravenclaw and the House cup. She felt his excitement at the victory, and how proud he was of her. The celebration moved to Gryffindor House and their first kiss. His passion matched hers, grateful that this had finally happened.
The next scene was at the Burrow. They were in her room, and he was telling her that he wanted her to come but it was too dangerous. The anguish in his heart almost broke hers, realizing how deeply he felt about her and how badly he wished to protect her. Then the kiss, all too short due to her brother's untimely entrance. She felt his spirits lift, grateful for the motivation she gave him to return to her.
The following scene was a short one. She saw him staring at Voldemort who was grinning, thinking his battle with Harry was over. Images flashed through his mind as he remembered person after person, with the last and strongest being her and their first kiss. A green flash and all went blank.
The final memory was walking to the marble crypt. They paused for her to help him. The wands touched and the magic flowed into them, bonding their hearts as one.
Ginny was back to travelling again. More details surfaced. It definitely was a train. The shiny chrome luggage racks were overhead and a gentle swaying was felt. The darkness outside the window seemed to diminish and she got excited, knowing her stop was next. The train pulled to a stop and she got up, leaving behind the car she had spent the last several months in. She walked to the end of the car and stepped out onto the platform. Not another soul was in sight. "Where am I?"
"At a crossroad of sorts" she heard the Headmaster reply. He was standing next to her in his set of pale blue robes she thought he looked best in.
"Why are you here?" she asked him.
"Because you wanted me to be. I am here to guide you."
"Guide me where? To Harry?"
"Yes if that is what you want. He has been here waiting."
"Why? And why couldn't I come sooner if he has been waiting?"
"Because it is not only you he has been waiting for. Now come." Ginny took his hand as they walked through the empty building.
"Albus where is he?" she asked after walking for what seemed like hours.
"Waiting as I said. You are the last to arrive, so now he can decide."
"Decide what? If he still loves me? Is Cho here?"
"My dear you have no reason to worry. The love you two share is like no other, and it is what kept you going over this last year. I am sorry to be the one who kept you two apart."
"That's OK." Ginny started to hear voices and began to move faster.
"Patience. We need to talk first." A wrought iron bench appeared and they sat down. She noticed she had the gold dress on from Bill and Fleur's Wedding. As anxious as she was, somehow she knew they needed to talk first.
"As you have guessed Harry has been on a journey. His body has been with you, however his mind is torn between two places. We are here to unite them so he can decide what is best."
"What do you mean 'What is best'? Do you mean he might not want to come back?"
"Yes. You saw what Tom did to him in the forest. We met and he made a decision to come back. This is similar. He left his body again, but your love for him brought him back. But not completely. The damage all four of you suffered nearly broke his spirit. I say nearly, because a part of him wants to come back desperately. However he knows who else has passed on, and desires to be with them also. Their love is strong too and tempts him to go to them. You are here because he wants you to be. Either to bring him back, or to say goodbye. He cannot continue as he is. He must be united mind, body, and soul."
"What must I do? I love him more than life itself. But if what he has suffered is too much for him than I will understand. Can I go there with him?"
"No. It is not your time" he replied, wondering how she might react if he decides to leave her.
Ginny and the Headmaster resumed their walk through the station, arriving finally on a balcony. Far below them were two trains, one facing in each direction. Faces could be seen, but it was too far away for her to tell who they were. Harry appeared as he walked into the space from beneath them.
"HARRY!" she screamed as she waved her hands trying to get his attention.
"He cannot hear you. Not yet anyway."
"Why not? When will he?"
"When he is ready. It is because of the love you have for him you can be here to witness what he is seeing."
Ginny watched as Harry looked at the two trains. He was gesturing both ways, suggesting he must be talking to them. She saw him walk to the train on the left, reaching up to touch the hands that reached out for him. "NO HARRY" she screamed, sensing this was the wrong train.
"This is not your decision to make. It always was and will be Harry's."
Ginny grew more anxious as Harry continued along the cars. At one point she saw him kiss the hand he held, and the long red hair told him who she was.
"How can you deny him the Family he has longed for?" Albus softly said. Other arms reached out to him, and she could tell they must be his Father and Sirius. At a closer car she spied Tonks pink hair and knew Remus would be with her. When Harry had walked the length of the train she saw him fall to his knees, overcome with emotion. She yearned to go to him, but knew she could only observe. "I love you Harry James Potter" she whispered. "You are my husband and always will be." Ginny was kneeling also, clutching her hand to her chest, and was surprised to see Harry was doing the same. Their wands appeared for each, and Ginny felt hers become warmer the longer she held it against her heart. Harry seemed to feel the same as he began to look around, seeming to look for her.
"Not yet" Albus said as she glanced from side to side trying to find a way to him.
Harry began walking along the other train, pausing occasionally to talk. He seemed not to be satisfied with any of them, going as far as to try to climb up the side of the cars. He even jumped into the air trying to see better. Benches appeared alongside and he leaped onto them, craning his neck to see over the heads of those inside. He went back to the cars, looking frantic as he went. Finally he reached the far end and hung his head. Slowly he made his way back to the middle and sat. For hours he did this, his head in his hands. Ginny held her breath when he stood. He looked one final time to his left (which she realized must be the people still alive) and slowly turned to walk the opposite way.
"HARRY NOOOOO!!!" she screamed as loud as she could. From her very soul this came, causing him to stop and look around.
Ginny was now on the train with her family and friends. She pushed her way through them trying to stop Harry before it was too late. She heard voices saying 'Let Him Go' and 'He Will Be At Peace', which reverberated through her head as she struggled against them. Finally she burst out of the compartments and down the steps.
"HARRY!" she screamed at him again. His foot was on the bottom step of the other train, and the whistle sounding their departure drowned her out. She saw him reach out to grasp the handrail to pull himself up.
"HARRY !!!" she screamed one final time as if her life depended on it. She saw a gust of grayish white smoke and felt herself falling. Two strong arms wrapped themselves around her.
* * *
Harry Potter stared blankly out the window. He knew he was on a train (he had figured that out some time ago) and was very frustrated. Most of the time the window was dark, but other times he saw images of his friends. Scenes would replay themselves - it was almost like the window was a pensieve and his memories would show themselves. He did not have the distraction of hunger or thirst, and he wasn't tired. He had no way to measure how long he had been there. As time passed he grew more and more nervous and anxious.
More memories began to show themselves in the window, forcing him to relive his dreams and his nightmares. Some were brief (like the night his parents died) while others were in slow motion. The attack by the Headmasters tomb was by far the slowest, showing over and over Ginny falling and hitting her head. The blood slowly trickling down her face. Hermione's screams as she was hit again and again. The thuds as Charlie punched Ron.
Interspersed were some good ones too. Time spent with his roommates Ron, Neville, Seamus, and Dean. Laughing at the pranks the Twins pulled. And doing one of his favorite things playing Quidditch. At one point he could swear he was holding his Firebolt, but it wasn't there. Another time he felt the heat of his wand, but he knew it was lost in the Black Lake.
That's when the depression began. Both his wand and his Firebolt were gone, probably forever. Ginny, Hermione, and Ron were seriously hurt because of him. So many friends and family members were gone now. 'Why bother anymore? The Prophesy was about me defeating Voldemort. Nothing about what comes next' he bitterly told himself. With his friends probably dying he lost the will to live.
With a lurch the train came to a stop. He looked out the window and saw an empty car alongside. "I guess I'm at the station." He exited the car and looked around. In the distance he heard voices and began walking towards them. As he did so more memories came to him. Family dinners at the Burrow, playing exploding snap with Hermione, losing at chess (again) to Ron. The DA, and how proud he was of them. And Ginny, the one he wanted to be with more than anything. He began to run, wishing with all his heart she was here.
The light got brighter as he entered a big open space. A train was on either side, one facing in each direction. The voices he heard were those of the train's passengers. On his right he saw all the Weasleys (but no Ginny, maybe she is in another car?). Hermione and Ron. The rest of the DA. Neville and Hannah Abbott (when did this happen?). Cho Chang and Michael Corner. The next car had the Professors. Minerva McGonagall and Professor Flitwick, Hagrid waving madly at him. Minister Kingsley Shacklebolt. He smiled as he waved back at them, again glad his actions gave them the chance to live without the threat of Voldemort hanging over them.
Harry turned the other way and the bottom fell out of his stomach. He knew if he had eaten (which he had not done in how long) he would have lost his meal. All the friends, and all the Family he had lost were there. He waved and knowing that was not sufficient he walked up to them. Cedric Diggory, who was 'the spare' and died when Tom Riddle came back to life. Regulus Black who he never met, his body lying at the bottom of the lake where the horcrux was hidden. Professor Dumbledore, whose body broke when he was killed in the Astronomy Tower. Even Professor Snape, whose face had no emotion like usual.
His parents were in the next car, and he held his Mother's hand not wanting to let it go. His Father and Sirius on either side, smiling broadly at him.
"Son we are so proud of you" he Father said.
"Sweetheart you did well in the forest. You did what was right" his Mother added.
"We know the decision was a difficult one for you. Unfortunately you are put in that same position" Sirius included.
"What should I do? I want to be with you so bad!!"
"Harry. Just like in the forest you are forced to decide. Life is not fair my Son. I wish I could tell you what is best, but I can't. You must look into your heart just like before" his Father stated.
Numbly Harry nodded, finishing his 'Walk of Shame'. He spent time with Nymphadora and Remus, and said Ginny had agreed to be Teddy's Godparent too.
At the end on the train Harry stopped. He felt he needed time to think, so he returned to the middle where he found benches not unlike his last visit. For hours he sat there, wondering what to do. He did not see Ginny, but that did not mean she wasn't there.
But he didn't see her. He would have known if she was. Something happened on the lawn, on the way to return the wand. She looked different to him somehow. And he felt different too. But she wasn't here. Maybe she has passed on, like Sirius falling through the veil? Her injuries claimed her life? He got up and took a final look at the other train. A single group of redheads, but no Ginny. Sadly he turned, thinking going to be with his parents was the right thing to do.
Sad smiles covered his parents faces when they saw Harry approach. He could not hear his Father telling him not to do this. Or Sirius saying to turn around, the noise of the engine firing up was so loud. He also did not see his Mother pointing at something or someone behind him. Placing his right foot on the step he turned to look one last time at his friends whose train was also preparing to leave. Gusts of steam filed the air making it difficult to see. Between the clouds he saw Hermione and Ron waving at him wildly. As he began to turn back and finish climbing he felt something. In later years he described it as 'being pulled back'. In the mist he saw a figure running towards him. He knew her silhouette-she filled his dreams every night. Her arms were outstretched and he knew they were for him. He stumbled back down and caught her as she fell.
* * *
Ginny woke up and tried to stretch out the kink in her back. Two arms were holding her in place, but they relaxed when he felt her move. "What time is it?" she mumbled.
"Almost four o'clock. Go back to sleep" he replied.
"OK" she said, cuddling back into his arms. She was lying on her side between Harry's legs, and he had his arms wrapped tightly around her. Her face was nuzzled under chin. "I had this horrible dream. You were back, and we went to The Headmaster's grave. You were terribly hurt. Hermione too. For a while I lost you." Suddenly she sat up. "What time did you say it was?" she whispered, almost afraid to ask again.
"Just past four O'clock" he replied, his wand now glowing brighter. He had out the watch he received on his 17th Birthday, and was showing her what time it was.
"Harry ... you ... you talked to me" she said staring at him.
"Well of course I talked to you. We are married aren't we?" he asked her, his emerald green eyes twinkling in the light cast by his wand.
"HARRY YOU TALKED TO ME !!!" she screamed. Four sets of footsteps were heard coming down the stairs and their door burst open. "Ginny? Ginny are you all right?" Ron yelled.
The curtains parted to see a sobbing Ginny, her body cradled in Harry's arms. He smiled at them, winking to let them know he was conscious. He gestured with his head and the other four climbed in, holding each other as they too cried.
"Master Harry" was now heard from the doorway. Kreacher was there with Winky, apparently woken from a sound sleep also. Uninvited they leaped into the bed (after all it was big enough to lay sideways in) and all sat back to listen to Harry as he talked about what happened.
"Did you see anyone or anything? I mean there are stories about a white light, or meeting with the ones who have passed on?" wondered Hannah.
"I did not see a white light, but I did see people. Lots of them. My parents, Sirius, Fred ... "
"You saw Fred? What did he say?" asked a startled Ron.
"Not much. Keep the shop going. And that it wasn't my fault, just like what your parents said."
"Harry ... did you see my Mom?" asked Hannah as she clung to Neville.
"No I'm sorry. I think this was people I knew, or ones I thought I was responsible for. Like Cedric. I never met her, so I did not feel guilty for her death. So I take it you an Neville are .. "
"Yes. Absolutely" Neville replied, kissing her in front of them.
"That's brilliant" Harry replied. "And Kreacher if you or Winky don't mind I feel like I haven't eaten in months."
"You haven't mate. 90 days but who's counting" laughed Ron.
"Well if all of you don't mind I think Harry can wait a few minutes longer to eat" Ginny pointedly said.
"You heard the lady" Hermione dictated, pushing them all out. She gave Harry one final hug and left, closing the door firmly behind.
"Harry what do you remember?" Ginny asked.
"Most of what you were saying and doing. I was frustrated because I wanted to let you know I was here but I couldn't. It was like I was in two places at once. And the train was the worst. Every bad dream and nightmare came back. Yes I had some good ones, especially with the three of you."
"Kingsley and Minerva came by with a guess of why we were attacked. Did you hear all that?"
"Yes. I suggest we let Hermione look into it if she hasn't already. I trust her completely. If this does exist then we can talk about it more."
"And there is one more thing. That day outside did you know what you were saying?"
"I wanted to be honest with you, and promise to tell you everything in the future. All this time I couldn't and it was tearing me apart. But the worst part was not being with you. Ginny I love you so much" Harry cried as she held him.
For the morning they spent the time in bed, just talking. OK so not just talking, but most of the time. She sent her patronus (which was now a doe like his Mother's) downstairs that company was welcome. They arrived to find Harry sitting up in a chair near the window.
"My legs aren't the best yet, but I'm sure with time they will be" he told them. That afternoon a small Party was held. Poppy, Minerva, Kingsley, Hagrid, and Augusta were invited over to celebrate Harry's Birthday.
"And where are you two off to?" he asked of himself and Ginny as they prepared to leave.
"Florian's since they reopened. It is now operated by his wife. We thought we might get a quick scoop before the press arrives" Ginny/Winky answered. She had on one of Ginny's new dresses in pale blue.
"Don't get anything on it" Ginny warned herself.
"No problem. I know a good cleaning lady" Winky/Ginny replied as they entered the floo followed by laughter.