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Chapter 10: The Lake.

Ron and Hermione sat in the boys’ dormitory, awaiting the arrival of Harry and Ginny. The four had finally some alone time to discus what Harry’s vision actually meant.

“Hermione, what do you think the poem means? I am sure that you have been thinking about it, you are always thinking,” said Ron, looking at her affectionately.

“I have a couple of ideas, I am just not sure of them. I’ll tell you as soon as Harry and Ginny get here,” she replied, smiling.

Just then an owl fluttered in through the window. Hermione grabbed the letter attached to its leg, and it flew back out.

“I wish they would hurry up,” Ron said impatiently. “We only have an hour until transfiguration class. I wonder who the teacher is going to be?” he then noticed the letter in Hermione’s hand. “Who is that from?”

“Oh, I would hate to be late, it’s the first class of the year,” she replied with a slight worry in her voice. “I don’t know… It’s addressed to Harry.”

“Hey,“ said Harry, as he walked in, followed by Ginny.

“Good, you’re here, we can start!” said Hermione.

“So, where were we?” asked Harry, sitting down on the nearest bed.

“Something about things not being as they appear,” answered Ron, looking at him with slight concern.

“Oh yeah. I think that we have that part figured out,” Harry replied, turning to Ginny. “The next part talks about a way, like a path. You come upon a darkened way. You’ll find a box darkened and gray.”

After a few moments silence, in which everyone appeared to be thinking, Hermione spoke. “I think that part is just pretty much straight forward. It just tells what is going to happen. What is the next part?”

Look inside, you’ll find the key or you’ll hate what will come to be,” recited Harry, looking puzzled.

“That could be straight forward too. I’m not sure about the key, though. That could mean an actual key, or more likely, the answer. But then that brings us back to finding the answer is finding the clue. Those appear the same so that could mean the two things that look the same are the answers,” she said, looking very pleased with herself.

“What?” asked Ron, looking at her as if she were speaking troll.

“It means that Harry does have to find a key. Not key like an answer, but an actual key for unlocking things. He has to find it on a dark path in a box. You see? It all fits!” she replied excitedly.

“I think you are right, but what exactly do I need to find a key to unlock?” asked Harry, looking to Hermione for a logical answer.

“Well, we don’t really know that yet, do we?” said Ginny, answering for Hermione.

“No we don’t,” replied Hermione, suddenly remembering the letter the owl had brought, and handing it to Harry. “This came for you a little while ago,” she finished, and headed towards the door, Ron following her.

Harry opened the letter, and read its contents.

Dear Mr. Potter,

    I am pleased to inform you that you have a job offer at the ministry. We need some aurors to stay at the school and try to help establish order.  We at the ministry think that you would be an excellent person for the position. You will stay at Hogwarts and finish your schooling there, but you will also be an auror at the school. It is better than sending in new people who have not been at the school for a while. I have been told you planned on becoming an auror anyway. Also tell your friend RonWeasley that if he would like a job, to contact us pronto.  As to the other matter, everything is going great with the Carrows baby; Alecto is currently four months pregnant. We are yet to find a family for her though, and I am sure you can imagine why. Would you be interested in starting the D.A. back up?

                                Sincerely,
                                 Minister Shacklebott.


He quickly jotted down a response without thinking about it.

Dear Minister,

    I accept your offer. Just tell me what I need to do next. I will tell Ron shortly. Good luck with Lorianna. I would be happy to start the D.A. back up. I will talk to Professor McGonagall about it.

                                    Sincerely,
                                        Harry Potter


“What was that Harry?” asked Ginny, looking at him curiously.

“I just got a job at the ministry!” he said, looking at her gleefully, as he handed her the letter.

“This is great Harry!” she replied happily."I can't wait until the D.A. starts back up. You are going to accept, right?"

Harry laughed and replied “Of course I am Ginny. I love the D.A. I think I will hold the first meeting next week."

“That’s a marvelous idea,” she replied flirtatiously.

“Dumbledore!” Harry called suddenly, rather loudly.

“What in the name of Merlin are you talking about Harry?” asked Ginny, looking at him in confusion.

“I’m calling my phoenix to deliver this letter, Ginny. I’m not talking about Albus Dumbledore!”

“Oh, right,” she replied as Fawkes the re-named phoenix swept down and grabbed the letter out of Harry’s hand.

***

Harry and Ginny walked down to the transfiguration classroom together. They were the second ones there, as Ron and Hermione had already got there before them. Harry was sure that Ron would have never got to a class early without prodding from Hermione.

“Hey guys!” said Harry, going to sit beside them. “I just got a job as an auror!”

“An auror? Already?” asked Hermione, looking slightly confused.

“Yes. They said they want to have one or two stationed at the school in case of any attacks from former death-eaters,” he explained, rather proudly.

“That’s bloody wicked Harry!” said Ron excitedly.

“Oh, and he said if you want a job as an auror, Ron, to contact them as soon as you can.” he added looking at his friend.

“What, like, right now? While I am school?” he asked eagerly.

“He wasn’t really that clear, but yeah, I think so,” replied Harry, his memory slightly fuzzy.

Ron smiled as a man around thirty walked into the room. He had dark brown hair, and a smile on his face.

“Hello there. You four are awfully early,” he said, taking a seat behind his desk.

Hermione was the quickest to respond. “Hello. I am Hermione Granger!”

“May I ask your names?” he said, motioning to the other two. “Not that you need to introduce yourself,” he added jokingly, looking at Harry’s forehead.

“I’m Ron Weasley, and this is my sister Ginny,” replied Ron, pointing rather rudely at her.

The professor nodded.

“Pleased to meet you… What’s your name professor?” asked Ginny curiously.

“Nicolas Flamel,” he replied, smiling once again. He was a rather happy person it seemed.

“But you're supposed to be dead!” said Hermione, quick to correct as always.

“I assume you are referring to my father,” replied their new teacher, laughing a bit.

“Your father was the maker of the Sorcerers stone? That is impossible. He was like, 600 years old, and you don’t look any older than 30,” she replied, slightly confused.

“My father adopted me, I’m not his biological child,” he explained.

“Oh,” said Hermione, with slight disappointment, and the others suppressed a laugh.

“What are we going to be doing in class today Professor?” asked Ginny, changing the subject

“Not much. I am going to have you each write a little paper about yourselves. I want to get to know you all as I am new here,” the professor replied happily.

Only six people had signed up to take that class, the trio plus Neville, Luna, and Ginny. The rest of the lesson passed smoothly, and they each read their paper in front of the class, mainly for Flamel’s sake, as they were all good friends.


***

Later that day, Neville took Luna to the Hogwarts kitchen. Neville had asked Harry how to get in, because he thought that Luna would like to meet the house elves.

“Well, this is certainly a peculiar place isn’t it?” asked Luna, as she walked into the kitchen, following Neville.

“Yeah! Luna, This is where the house elves live,” he said, looking into her gorgeous eyes. “I thought you might like it.”

“I do. It is absolutely marvelous,” she said, smiling dreamily. “You are so sweet Neville.”

“Thanks, you are sweeter,” he replied. “I love you Luna.”

“I love you too Nev,” she replied, kissing him.

Just then a little house elf ran up to them with a plate of sweets. “Would you like something to eat? Some pumpkin juice?” she asked in a squeaky voice.

“Sure, that would be great,” replied Neville as he quickly broke apart from his girlfriend.

The little elf set the tray down before them and snapped her fingers to make some pumpkin juice appear. “Enjoy,” she said, and with a bow she was gone.

***

That night Harry and Ginny were down by the lake. As they were both prefects, they had the privilege of staying out as long as they wanted.

“You know Ginny, life is pretty great right now,” said Harry, looking at the moonlight shimmering down on Ginny.

“Yeah it is,” she replied, smiling. “I can’t wait to get married.”

“Me neither,” said Harry, smiling back. “Exactly who are you planning on marrying, Miss Weasley?” he asked mockingly.

“Draco Malfoy of course!” she replied sarcastically, sticking her tongue out at him.

“I love you Gin,” he said, laughing slightly.

“I love you too Harry,” she replied.

 After a few moments she spoke again. “Harry. I want you to tell me exactly what happened the night you killed Tom.”  She had been itching to ask him for weeks, just hadn’t wanted to make it too soon.

Harry sighed. “Well, I went to him in the forest, and… and I thought I was going to die Ginny.” He frowned. “No, I knew I was going to die. Hermione told you all about the hallows right?”

Ginny nodded in response.

“Well, I put the snitch up to my lips realizing what I open at the close meant. That was the description that was on the snitch when I got it from Dumbledore,” he explained, seeing that she was looking slightly confused. “His ring was in it. The one he wore the year before he died. The stone on it was the resurrection stone. I slipped it onto my finger and my parents appeared. So did Sirius and Lupin. They told me that they would stay with me until it was over. I remember asking Sirius if it hurt to die. His response was typical of him, always joking. He said it was faster and easier then falling asleep. It all goes blurry for a while. I don’t quite remember what happened. I saw a flash of green light and well he- he killed me. When I “died” I went to this place; to me it was like Kings Cross station. Dumbledore was there, alive. He talked to me, and told me that I had the choice to go back, and that if I went back Voldemort would be defeated for the final time. Gone forever. That’s not what I thought about though. I thought about you, Ginny, about how I wanted to marry you and have a family with you… Finally, Dumbledore told me it was time to go back, and I was back in the forest, lying on the ground in front of Voldemort. I think you know the rest,” he finished, looking into her eyes.

“Oh Harry,” replied Ginny, love and concern shining sadly in her eyes.

Harry smiled sadly, not wanting to talk about it anymore. “Do you want to fly, Ginny?” he asked, changing the subject.

“Sure,“ she replied, giggling, and pretending she hadn’t noticed him avoiding the subject.

Harry summoned his broom and swung his leg over the handle. “Get on,” he said, motioning to the back of the broom.

“Oh no. I get to guide it. You’re riding on the back, Mr. Potter!” she replied with a smirk.

“Fine, if you say so, Miss Weasley,” said Harry, scooting to the back of the broom.

Ginny climbed onto the front, and they took off, flying high above the castle.

“It’s so beautiful,” called Ginny, her voice getting lost slightly in the breeze.

“I know, Ginny. Rather romantic isn’t it?” he asked playfully.

“Oh yes it is,” she replied, smiling.

“Lets go higher,” suggested Harry, looking down towards the ground.

“Yeah, right. If we go much higher we won’t even be able to see the castle! Look at that,” she said, pointing to something sparking over the lake.

“What is it?” he asked curiously.

“I don’t know,” she replied.

“Go lower so we can see,” he asked, smiling at her even though she had her back to him.

“First you say higher, now you say lower. Make up your mind,” she said, turning her head towards him and sticking out her tongue. Facing the front again, she lowered the broom to about thirty feet off the ground.

“Is that better?” she asked with a laugh, looking ahead towards the sparkling point above the lake.

There was no answer, and the broom seemed suddenly to be lighter. “Harry?” she asked frantically, realising she could no longer feel his hands around her middle.

“HARRY!” she screamed, stopping the broom mid air and looking down, her heart freezing at the sight of her boyfriend’s limp body plummeting to the ground.

Moving immediately into action, she dived after him, landing quickly and rushing over to where his body had fallen.

‘Harry!’ she called once more, her voice breaking as she knelt down beside him.

One look was all it took to see that he needed medical attention, and fast.

“Moblicorpus!” she said, standing up and pointing her wand at his body. It rose gracefully above the ground and hovered in front of her, his face white as a sheet, and emerald eyes shut. Tears falling silently down her cheeks, Ginny strode determinedly forwards, guiding him up to the castle with her wand.

***

About fifteen minutes later, Ginny was pacing up and down the hall outside the hospital wing, listening to the frantic voices inside.

“Ennervate!” said Madame Pompfrey, trying to revive Harry. “ENNERVATE!”
Harry just wouldn’t wake up. He was breathing but nothing the nurse could do would revive him.

“Is he going to be okay?” asked Professor McGonagall.

“I’m not sure. I can’t revive him. He is alive, but he won’t wake,” she said desperately, lowering her wand. “We may have to send him to St. Mungo's, Minerva.”

McGonagall looked at the unconscious boy and nodded, her face pale. “I will owl them now to say we are coming.”

“You can’t apperate him though. It could be dangerous with him injured like this. You need to have someone from St. Mungo's come and get him,” she replied in a dry voice.

“Okay then, I will owl Felica.”

***

Ron and Hermione rushed up to the outside of the wing, where Ginny was pacing.

“Is he all right?” asked Hermione hurriedly, putting an arm around her friend.

“I don’t know. They said he should be moved to St. Mungos. I am not sure why, they wont let me in to see him,” she replied sadly.

“Bloody hell, what happened Ginny?” asked Ron.

“I’m not quite sure, it all happened so fast. We were flying on Harry‘s broom, and he must have passed out again when we were about thirty feet off of the ground. Just like he did in Diagon Alley,” replied Ginny, biting her bottom lip between words.

“Oh no, that’s terrible,’ replied Hermione, looking towards the door. “I hope he’s going to be okay.”

“When I get my hands on who ever poisoned him, they are going to be sorry,” replied Ginny bitterly.

Professor McGonagall opened the door, lines of worry etched in her expression. “You can come in and see him now, Ginny. Poppy can’t revive him; we are going to send him to St. Mungos. You three can go with him.”

They rushed immediately into the hospital wing, to see Harry lying on the nearest bed, unconscious.

“Oh Ron, he doesn’t look too good,” said Hermione, resting her head on Ron’s shoulder.

“I hope he’s okay,” said Ginny quietly, sitting in a chair next to the bed, and taking his hand in hers.

“Don’t worry, he’s the boy who lived. Nothing can happen to him,” replied Ron, although he didn’t believe his own words.

The healer that they had met on their previous trip to St.Mungo’s walked into the room. “We need to go now. He doesn’t look like he will last much longer if we don’t get him there immediately,” she said rather bluntly, and made to move Harry to the fireplace.

Ginny, Ron and Hermione exchanged worried looks, wishing that the healer would keep some things to herself. They watched, as with a burst of green flames she was gone, taking Harry’s unconscious body with her.

Stepping into the fireplace after her, they quickly sprinkled some floo powder.

 ‘St. Mungo’s!’ called Ginny clearly, and with a swirl of green flames, they vanished too.


A/N: This chapter took a bit longer. I had trouble writing Harry's "Fall" scene so it is better than if it would have taken just a few days. Hope you enjoy this story. Please review. It helps me come up with good ideas, not to mention it makes me happy, and incourages me to write faster. :) I am very happy with the reviews I have been getting, but I still like more. lol. I am only going by DH and not the epilogue or anything that JK reavieled, I might go by some of it, but not all of it or I might change some of what i do go by. Happy reading!!!

As always thanks for reading,
Mira, Laura, and Saves

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