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Chapter Pic By anora tonks @ The Dark Arts



Ch. 3- Secrets, Secrets Are No Fun, Secrets, Secrets Hurt Someone



Harry had suddenly pulled into a dive, his hand stretched in front of him, the cool breeze whipping through his hair. He had spotted the Snitch about a foot off the ground. He was so close, the tips of his fingers almost brushing the tiny, golden ball. "Just a little farther," he thought, urging his Firebolt forward. Then, with one final, triumphant swipe, he caught it.



"Good one, Harry!" Ron called out from the Keeper's end of the pitch, where they had enchanted crabapples to soar at him in intervals. They would have asked Ginny to play Chaser with them, but oddly enough, they couldn't find her. So Ron had to settle for enchanted crabapples for Keeper practice. Over in the lake, Fred was splashing around with Angelina Johnson, and he was pretty sure he had seen George sneak off into the surrounding wood with Katie Bell a little bit ago.



"It would be nice to do a little splashing around with Ginny," Harry thought. "If I could only find h-" His thoughts were cut off, though, by a scream coming from the Burrow. He whipped his head towards the house, as did Ron, and saw Hermione's sticking out of Ginny's bedroom window, which was thrown wide open.



"Ron! Harry!" Hermione shrieked, looking wildly around the yard until she spotted them. They both sped towards the house, and upon landing ran inside. On his way upstairs, Harry caught sight of the family clock. Ginny's hand was on the place labeled You're Late. "That's odd," he thought, frowning. But at the thought of Ginny, a wave of panic came over him, making him forget about the clock and run up the stairs. When he got to Ginny's room, Ron was already there holding Hermione, who looked as if she were in a state of shock. Ginny was unconscious on the floor next to her bed.



"Hermione, what happened?" Harry asked, walking over to Ginny and lifting her onto her bed. Hermione stepped out of Ron's embrace. Looking from Harry to Ginny, then back to Harry again with a nervous look on her face.



"Um... well, Ginny found out some rather shocking news that I can't exactly reveal to you right now... and she, well, fainted," she replied feebly, wringing her hands and trying not to look at Harry.



"I wonder if the twins have seen Mum. I think I'll go check," Ron said quickly, sensing the coming tension. His tall, redheaded form had just whipped out of sight when Harry got a bit frustrated.



"What do you mean, you can't exactly tell me?" he asked through gritted teeth, turning away from Ginny and looking directly at Hermione now.



"Well, it's just that seeing as Ginny's unconscious right now, and I don't exactly think I'm the best person to tell you she's - " she hissed back before slapping a hand over her mouth, looking angry at herself.



"What, Hermione? She's what?" demanded Harry.



"Nothing. She's nothing," she declared, her voice muffled behind the hand still clamped over her mouth.



"Harry..." came a weak voice from behind him, and he turned around to look at Ginny. Her skin was ghostly pale, yet still glowed in the sunlight. Her scarlet locks were fanned out over her pillows, and her chocolate brown eyes were locked with his green ones.



"Ginny..." he whispered, the weakness of her voice and paleness of her skin sending shivers up his spine. But their moment was soon broken by the shrieks of a concerned mother.



"Ginny! Oh my baby!" cried Mrs. Weasley, who was running through the doorway at her, with Mr. Weasley and Ron following close behind.



"Mum, gerroff me, I'm fine!" she said through her mother's arms, which were engulfing her in a hug.



"Molly, come on, you're suffocating her," Mr. Weasley said, gently pulling his wife off of his daughter. All of a sudden, Ginny sprang out of her bed; hand clamped over her mouth, she ran out of the door and into the bathroom, slamming the door shut. They all ran out after, surprised and confused at this sudden behavior. Well, all except for Ron and Hermione, that is. They had this odd, nervous look on their faces.



"Ginny, dear, is everything all right?" asked Mrs. Weasley, knocking on the door.



"Go away!" she yelled, and Mrs. Weasley raised her hand to knock on the door again, thought better of it, and left for the kitchen with Mr. Weasley, looking forlorn.



"Ginny?" Harry asked cautiously, knocking softly on the door. Ginny was in tears now.



"G-go a-a-away!" she sobbed, and they heard her collapse on the floor.



"Ginny? It's Hermione," she said in a soft, calming voice. "Will you let me in?" The door opened a crack and Hermione saw the ghostly pale face of her best friend.



"Is Harry out there?" she asked in a small voice.



"No. I told Ron to take him outside. He's a wreck, Ginny, he's so worried about you," she answered.



Ginny looked like she was about to burst into tears again.



"Can I come in?" she asked again, nodding at the door. Ginny nodded and opened the door wider to let her in. Once Hermione was in all the way, she turned and shut the door. Ginny went to take a seat on the floor, and Hermione took a seat on the edge of the bathtub. They sat in silence for awhile before Ginny spoke.



"Did you tell Harry? You know? That I'm... pregnant?" she whispered, the last word barely audible.



"No, Ginny, I didn't. But will you?" she questioned, looking at the distraught girl in front of her.



"Of course I can't tell Harry! In two weeks, all three of you are going Merlin knows where to destroy Horcruxes, and you're putting your lives on the line, and Harry doesn't need more to worry about!" she all but screamed. As a precaution, Hermione cast a silencing charm on the room. Harry didn't need to find out like this. "I can't tell Harry, because he'd kill himself if Voldemort killed the baby and me," she said, tears pouring down her face, her voice a mere whisper. "He can't know until you come back. Not until he's safe."



****



Ginny stood in front of her mirror in her bedroom at the Burrow, examining her reflection before she went down to help with Christmas dinner. Her flame red hair was in loose curls, nothing special. She was wearing a lilac cashmere turtleneck that Harry had sent her early for Christmas, a camel colored, knee-length, corduroy skirt and dark brown, round-toed boots. She was also wearing the gorgeous ruby, emerald, and platinum promise ring that he had given her on her sixteenth birthday, before he had left in September. He had promised her that he would come back to her. Her eyes came to rest on her swollen stomach. She had insisted on casting special enlarging charms on her regular clothing instead of buying maternity robes. The one trip to Madam Malkin's with her mother had been horrible enough. She had been four months pregnant when they went and she was still feeling self-conscious about the fact that she was showing. She ended up running out of Madam Malkin's in tears, her mother hurrying after her. Now, at five months, she's feeling a little better about it, but her hormones still sometimes get the best of her. Like now, when, standing in front of her mirror, her hand on her stomach, she felt her baby kick. She burst into tears; thinking "Harry's never going to get to feel his baby kicking." Her sorrowful thoughts and tears were soon interrupted by a soft tap, tap on her window.



"Hedwig," she whispered. It had been a long time since the snowy white owl of Harry's had brought her anything, seeing as he had to keep switching owls. She quickly wiped away her tears and crossed the room to the window. Upon opening it, she saw, clamped in the owl's beak, a small scroll with Harry's unmistakable scrawl on the front, reading Ginny. She took the scroll out of Hedwig's beak, and, after the bird had flown to the top of her wardrobe and settled in, she shut the window. She sat down on her bed, slit the scroll open, and began reading:



Ginny,


How are you? I hope you're okay. We've just reached our final destination in tracking the animal and its young. We've already captured and killed three young, just one more and the animal left. I hope to come back home soon. I miss you.



With love,



Harry





Ginny let out a little giggle at the mention of their code. Since Harry couldn't mention Voldemort or Horcruxes in his letters, before leaving he had devised a code where they would call Voldemort "the animal" and since the Horcruxes were pieces of his soul, they were deemed "its young". Hopefully, anyone who might intercept one of his letters would just think he was on the hunt for a vicious animal and its killer young. Which, in a way, he was. "Merlin," she thought, "I can't wait until he gets home," Hopefully it would be before she gave birth. It would probably be more of a shock to see a newborn with your hair and your girlfriend's eyes upon arriving home than to see a pregnant girlfriend. "Still a nasty shock, though. But I just can't tell him, not yet," she thought. She allowed herself to think back to the night it happened. The night that changed her life forever.




-July 15th, approximately five months earlier-



They had just come in from the garden, where they had been discussing a lot of things. Harry had told her almost everything he had been hiding from her since they had started dating. Horcruxes, the prophecy, everything. Upon entering the kitchen, they caught sight of Ron and Hermione having a rather heated conversation. They caught a few snatches here and there, like, "of course you're not going to get pregnant" and things like "insensitive prat" and "stupid berk" before the bickering stopped and Hermione burst into tears, causing Ron to wrap his arms around her, whispering comforting words in her hear. This was their cue to leave. They went up the stairs quickly and quietly, so as not to disturb them. The pair stopped in front of Ginny's door, where he took her hands in his and looked into her eyes.



"Goodnight," he whispered before bending his head down to kiss her tenderly. She kissed him back, taking her hands from his and lacing them around his neck. At first the kisses were soft and innocent; they quickly grew to be hungrier and full of passion. Ginny was soon pinned against her bedroom door, altogether forgetting that her parents were somewhere in the house.



"Damn door!" he hissed under his breath, and then found the doorknob.



"You know, Harry, if it hadn't have been for the door, we would be on the floor right now," she whispered seductively in his ear as he opened the door, "not that I would have minded." Harry raised his eyebrows at her as he walked inside her room and shut the door. Her comment seemed to sober him a little.



"Are you sure?" he asked her, moving closer. She just nodded her head. Those next moments were a blur for her to remember. Kisses on the neck. Hands running through hair. She remembers lying down on her bed at some point. She doesn't remember anyone casting any contraceptive charms, but they had, of course, remembered to cast a silencing charm, and the locking charm cast on the door would take a full grown giant to break through. But they had, in the heat of things, forgotten to cast a contraceptive charm. She woke up around two o'clock, exhausted, but extremely happy. Harry was lying next to her, still sleeping, his left arm draped over her waist, his right bent over his head. His hair was mussed, but that was how she liked it. Disheveled. Something caught her eye; it was on his right hand, on the back of it. It looked almost like...no, that's impossible. It was just a trick of the moonlight. But if she shifted up and over a touch she would be able to see it... She carefully maneuvered herself so as not to disturb Harry, and after a couple seconds, she had a plain view of the back of his right hand. She gasped. Etched in the back of his hand, shining white, were the words I must not tell lies. How had she not noticed this before? How many times had she held his hand? "Harry James Potter!" she whispered angrily. Harry's eyes flew open.



"What? What's wrong?" he mumbled, looking around, his eyes finally settling on Ginny. "Bugger," he whispered, seeing the angry look on her face.



"Harry, can you explain to me why you have the words 'I must not tell lies' etched into the back of your hand?" she hissed at him, grabbing his wrist and shoving it in his face.



"Um...well, see, you know when I had those detentions with Umbridge, back in fifth year?" he asked timidly, and when he heard her say something that sounded vaguely like "Umbridge", he took it as a yes. "Well, for detention she made me write lines using a quill that carved the words into the back of my hand and wrote it on the parchment in my blood," he told her in a rush.



"That evil, twisted, mad, toad!" she screamed, suddenly sitting up, her face the famous Weasley scarlet.



"Ginny, it's okay, calm down," he said, enveloping her in his arms.



"It bloody well is not okay! How come I've never seen or noticed it before?" she asked, wrenching herself out of his grasp and not bothering to cover up.



"Now Gin, you've got to understand me when I tell you why I was concealing it," he started, bracing himself for the worst.



"How long have you been concealing it?" she asked, giving him the death glare she was so famous for.



"Since we started dating," he mumbled, not looking at her anymore.



"What!" she shrieked, clearly outraged. "And why would you feel the need to conceal it in the first place?"



"Because I wanted to avoid this! I didn't want your pity! I didn't want to see the horror on your face! Okay?" he yelled, looking her directly in the eyes. She could see pain in the depths of those emerald green pools.



"Harry, why couldn't you just tell me about it?" she asked, calming down.



"Because I didn't want you to have to worry about it," he told her.





Ginny was brought back out of her thoughts rather harshly by the hooting of the owl atop her wardrobe. She looked up at Hedwig, realizing that Harry had probably told her not to come back without a reply. "Well, I shouldn't disappoint him, and dinner can wait a bit," she thought. She walked over to her desk and sat down, getting out parchment, quill and ink in the process. She thought of what she could possibly write about, writing about school was too painful, seeing as she had to lie because Harry didn't and couldn't know that she wasn't taking her classes at Hogwarts anymore. She was doing them through owl correspondence at the Burrow because of her pregnancy. Professor McGonagall, who was the new headmistress, had given her the choice between the two when her parents had written to her. She had chosen owl correspondence because she would pretty much be alone in the whole pregnancy thing at Hogwarts, what with Harry, Ron and Hermione gone, her true support system there was gone, too. It would have just been too painful to go back. After writing what she thought was an okay reply, telling him she missed him, loved him, wanted him home soon, and adding a little something about the Horcruxes in there, she added a P.S. saying she had important news for him when he got home. As she watched the snowy owl become a black speck on the horizon, she couldn't help but thinking that he might not get home in time.



********


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