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A/N: Hey all! I know it's been a while. The end of the year was crazy but now it's done and over and I at least have summer break for a while. Here's the next one so enjoy! Don't forget to check out my Meet the Author page on the forums!

Many thanks to my wonderful beta and her awesome skills!

P.S. You all want to know what page 37 is don't you? Well....keep wondering!

P.S.S. I TOOK THE WALK!

DISCLAIMER: Not mine. Just a little fun!



Adventures as Newlyweds

Chapter Eleven – Maybe I Should Wear Scarves?



Ginny had become accustomed to wearing either something really comfy or very little at all. She felt slightly strange wearing a collared light blue pinstriped blouse and a conservative straight black skirt. Not to mention she was not looking forward to shrugging on her plain black work robes. She wished she could dress a little more casually to work. She briefly wondered what would happen if she showed up in a tee shirt and jeans or even one of her silky numbers Harry absolutely loved to see her in.

She grinned into the mirror when she thought back on the events of the night before and early that morning and how quickly Harry had rid her of one of her silky things. She had to admit, page thirty seven was rather fun and she wondered why she had put it off for so long. Grinning to herself, she tucked her hair behind her ear and strolled out of the bathroom to join Harry in the kitchen.

The sight that met Ginny’s eyes made her smile. Harry stood barefooted in the small kitchen loading toast onto a small plate. He wore only his pajama bottoms which hung low on his hips and his hair looked exactly as it had when she had left the bed earlier to take a shower and get ready for work. His glasses appeared to be slowly slipping down the bridge of his nose and the light of the kitchen made his ring gleam slightly as he moved his hand. He was humming along to a song playing softly on the radio and tapping his foot to the beat.

Ginny had never seen him like this before in the morning. When she had spent nights with him before they had gotten married she usually left just after they woke and if she did decide to stay for the rare breakfast with him, he was already fully dressed. During their honeymoon they either ordered food or went down to one of the restaurants for breakfast. Watching Harry work in the kitchen in the state he was in seemed like an intimate moment for her and she was happy she would get to see this for the rest of her life.

Harry turned with the plate of toast in his hands and spotted her watching him. He grinned. “Morning.”

“Hi,” she replied, feeling silly at her simple greeting. She stood rooted in her spot and watched as he left the kitchen and set the plate on the small kitchen table.

“I’m afraid it’s just toast again,” he said and looked up at her. “Mind getting the marmalade?”

Ginny nodded and quickly fetched the jar. She joined Harry at the table.

“Maybe we should have gone shopping yesterday,” he said as she sat across from him.

“Yeah, maybe,” she agreed as a strange feeling overcame her and she couldn’t quite place what it was. It was like she was expecting something.

“Oh, the tea,” Harry muttered aloud and stood up. He glanced at her and it seemed like he too was feeling the same awkwardness she was. “Did you want anything other than tea to drink?”

“Is there anything else?” she asked. “There wasn’t anything yesterday.”

“Oh, err, right.” He looked slightly pink in the cheeks and smiled bashfully at her. “Water then, too?”

She nodded and with another shy smile at her, he took off for the kitchen again. Ginny busied herself with spreading marmalade on her toast and trying to figure out why things were feeling so strange suddenly.

Harry reappeared with two glasses of water and two teacups floating in front of him. He gently flicked his wand, and the small ensemble of drinking devices settled on top of the table. He took up his seat again and took the knife Ginny had just set next to the jar. He, like Ginny, spread marmalade on his own slice of toast. Ginny watched him, munching on her toast with a slight frown on her face. Harry noticed her look when he put the knife back down.

“Anything wrong?”

Ginny shrugged, finishing the bite she had just taken. “I just feel like something’s missing . . . like I’m expecting something.”

Harry’s eyebrows furrowed together slightly in thought as he nibbled on his toast.

“Like there should be someone else with us?” Harry suggested after a few moments of silence between them.

She nodded in agreement. That was exactly it. “Yes! I feel like Mum or Dad or one of my brothers should be joining us for breakfast at any moment but I know they won’t. It’s just us. I suppose it’s something I need to get used to.”

“We’ve been alone for two weeks now, Ginny,” Harry pointed out. “You do remember Hawaii don’t you? Or have you forgotten about our honeymoon already.”

“I haven’t forgotten,” she rolled her eyes at him. She waved her toast in his direction just as he took a huge bite out of his. “And Hawaii was different. We weren’t really in reality, you know? It was like some dream we were living for a while. We’re home now so it just feels different. It’s just the two of us in this little flat.”

“It won’t always be just the two of us,” Harry replied once he swallowed.

“What does that mean?” Ginny asked with a frown.

Harry cleared his throat, casting his eyes down on his plate of toast. She caught a faint shade of red spring to his cheeks. “You know, when we, err, when there will be more than just us around.”

Ginny was confused for a moment longer before she understood him.

“Oh. You mean children,” she clarified unnecessarily. Harry nodded, taking a large bite of his toast.

Children. For some reason the thought of them having a child made her blush. It wasn’t like they hadn’t discussed this before. They both wanted children. But, she realized, they had never said anything more than that. Having children didn’t seem like a big deal at the time but now that they had said their vows, it seemed like they should have discussed it in more detail. How many kids did they want? When? Did they want to wait or start right away or did they just want nature to take its course?

This was an important topic and something they should have put more thought into before they got married. Ginny felt that they needed to talk about it to some extent before they found themselves with a little one on the way unexpectedly.

“Harry?” she said tentatively. “About having kids . . . how many do you want?”

He looked at her, his glass of water in his hand and shrugged. “Dunno. A fair few I suppose.”

“What’s a few?” she asked and ran her finger along the rim of her teacup.”

He said nothing for a few moments. For a moment she thought he wasn’t going to answer or maybe even tell her that he really did not want any children at all and he only said a few to please her. He looked up.

“Three?” he suggested and gave her a sincere look then quickly added, “I mean you know if you don’t mind since you are the one who is going to be actually having them.”

“Three,” she repeated slowly, glancing down at her half eaten plate of toast and thought for a moment. She glanced up at him and smiled. “I think three children is a good number.”

He grinned. He looked as if Christmas had come early. “Really? You want three then?”

Ginny nodded. “I’ve always wanted a somewhat big family, not as big as my own. I suppose it’s because I came from one and couldn’t imagine just having one child around.”

Harry’s smile grew and he reached out and grabbed her hand. He had a hopeful look on his face. “So if I say I might want more than three . . . .” His voice trailed off and his hopeful look brightened at her smile.

“I think I might be happy with that. But I will not become my mother. I will not bear children every other year or what have you,” she replied and squeezed his hand. He seemed to be happy with the fact that she wanted a somewhat large family, but one fact still remained. “When do you want to start having these more than three children of ours?”

He frowned for a moment and kept his hold on her hand. “Well, I do want you to myself for a while but I don’t want to wait for too long. A year?”

Ginny nodded in agreement and felt happy that they had some of this discussion done. There was more for them to discuss; finances, work, housing. Financial she knew they were able to support a child, but how long would she have to take off work? And the flat they were in right now was fine for the two of them, but when they decided to have a baby, they would have to have a lot more room than this. They had talked about rebuilding the house in Godric’s Hollow, Ginny had even gone into details on what she wanted it to look like late one night when they were alone, but with the wedding plans and their jobs, they hadn’t been able to get all the details together on it. Perhaps now they could reconsider it especially if they were planning on having more than three children.

Flames erupted in the small hearth, drawing their attention away from each other and thoughts of children.

“Hello? Harry? Ginny? Merlin, that girl better be up.”

Ginny rolled her eyes at the sound of her mother’s voice and stood from the small table. She made her way towards the fireplace, Harry in her wake.

Molly’s head was sitting among the flames and her eyes were darting around the room anxiously.

“I’m awake, Mum,” Ginny announced as she sat on the sofa with Harry next to her.

“Good. I just wanted to make sure you were up in time to get to work,” Molly sighed and looked directly at Harry. “I meant to tell you this last night, but it simply slipped my mind. Harry, dear, she can be a bit difficult to wake sometimes so make sure you get her up in time. You might want to make sure you set some extra Alarm Charms to make sure she’s up.”

“Mum!” Ginny cried in shock that her mother was talking about her like this right in front of her. “I am sitting here you know and it’s not like I can’t get up on my own.”

“Of course you can, dear, it’s just that I know that sometimes you can have trouble and Harry should know so he can make sure you get to work on time. Now, did you eat breakfast yet? Would you like me to Floo something over?” Molly continued.

“No, Mum. We’re fine. We had some toast,” Ginny ground out, feeling rather unhappy with the mothering that was taking place. Ginny was after all a grown married woman and could handle waking up on her own and managing breakfast.

“Toast?” Molly repeated her eyes wide in shock. “Was that all you had? Now really, that isn’t enough for a good meal. Breakfast is important, you know. Maybe I should send over some eggs and bangers for you two. I made plenty this morning.”

Harry opened his mouth to reply but Ginny was too quick for him.

“No thank you,” Ginny immediately replied. Harry turned and gave her an inquisitive look. “We just need to go shopping later today. We’ll be fine. I’ve got to get going soon. Bye, Mum.”

Ginny rose from the sofa and strode back to the small dining table. She heard her mother whispering something to Harry before the sound of the flames went out and Harry rejoined her at the table.

“Can you believe that?” Ginny grumbled, tearing her last piece of toast into shreds.

“She’s just worried about you,” Harry pointed out.

“But did she have to act like that?” Ginny cried and threw the last shred on her plate. She shoved it away from her. “She’s acting as if I don’t know how to take care of myself. I’m not a child anymore!”

“What did you expect, love?” Harry asked as he stood up again and took the seat next to her. “You’re her only daughter and her youngest. She’s going to worry about you the most.”

“She doesn’t have to,” Ginny whined. “I can take care of myself and I have you, don’t I? What’s to worry about? She’s raised me to be a functional adult who can make my own decisions and look out for myself.”

“I suppose we won’t understand until we’re parents one day,” Harry sighed. He brought his hand to her chin and turned her head to face him. “Don’t pout over it, okay? She’s just being her normal motherly self. Give her some time and she’ll back off.”

Ginny nodded and he kissed her softly on the lips. She pulled away and sighed.

“I think I really should get going,” Ginny said and glanced at the small clock in the room. It was still early but she figured showing up a little early might get her some sort of a head start on the work she missed. She stood up and made her way to their bedroom to put on her work robes.

“Now?” Harry’s voice asked from behind her.

Ginny glanced behind her shoulder and found him following her, a disappointed look on his face. Ginny turned and faced him.

“Can’t you stay for a little while longer?” he asked, slipping his arms around her waist and pulling her close to him.

“I wish I could,” she muttered, letting her hands settle on his bare chest. She felt him shiver slightly at her touch, and his hands slid down her back. She remembered what they had felt only a few hours ago on her bare skin. “I really wish I could.”

“Then stay,” he whispered. He kissed her forehead then moved down to her nose and finally the side of her neck. “I’m sure they won’t mind if you’re a little late.”

Ginny groaned, trying to fight the urge to wrap herself around Harry and allow him to take her right there in the hallway. Her neck was her weakness and he knew it.

“I can’t,” she breathed. Her eyes closed as his hands moved up and down her back. His lips continued to plant her neck with delicious kisses. He moved to her pulse point, making her gasp in pleasure. “Merlin, Harry, you’re going to make me late!”

“That’s the point,” he muttered and chuckled quietly in her ear. He pulled away from her neck and moved up to kiss her lips. “Please?”

“Don’t beg,” she replied and tried to push him away, but he kissed her again and she couldn’t help but melt into him. If he kept this up, she would never get to work that day or the next or even the next. . . .

“Harry,” she said firmly and grabbed a hold of his wondering hands. He whimpered slightly.

“Lunch?” he asked, raising his eyebrows hopefully at her.

She shook her head. “I promised Mikayla I’d have lunch with her today.”

“Reschedule,” he muttered and went back to kissing her neck.

“Harry, she’s my best friend. I haven’t seen her in two weeks,” she said. She managed to step away from him and gained control of herself. “I’ll make sure I get off by five and come straight home, all right?”

“Fine,” he gave in. “No later?”

“No later,” she promised and smiled at him. She kissed him and continued to the bedroom. She put on her work robes, picked up her handbag and the picture frame she had put together the night before and Disapparated.

The Ministry wasn’t as crowded as it should be on a Monday morning, but it was still a bit early and soon enough workers would be pouring in. Ginny straightened her shoulders and headed across the Atrium toward the lifts. As it wasn’t crowded, the chance of running into someone was slim. She thought it was safe to look down at the pictures she had chosen to take with her to work from the wedding.

It was a hard decision, picking out which wedding photo would sit on her desk at work. She loved all the pictures and had to thank Colin and Dennis profusely for the marvelous job they had done. Since she had picked out a double frame, Ginny was able to choose two pictures. One was of just Harry in his tuxedo and looking very handsome and happy. He was leaning against a tree, hands in his pockets and smiling at the camera. Every once in awhile he would shake his hair out of his eyes and shift his position. The other picture was of the two of them, foreheads leaning against each other as they held onto each other. They barely moved in this one, their attention focused on each other and too busy sharing soft kisses to pay any attention to anything else.

Smiling, Ginny clutched the frame to her and looked up. A lift was just closing. She picked up her speed.

“Hold the lift, please!” she called out. A hand poked out of the nearly closed doors and forced them open. Ginny hurried inside, her hair covering her face. “Thanks!”

“Perhaps if you weren’t too busy playing wifey you wouldn’t have had to hurry.”

Ginny pushed her hair out of her face and found Ron’s grinning face in front of her. To the left was Percy and to the right was her father.

“Oh shove it, Ron,” Ginny said and immediately turned her attention to Percy. “Hey, Perce.”

“Hello, Ginny,” he greeted her. “Good to see you here early.”

“I thought I should come in a bit earlier and get a head start on what I missed,” she explained. Percy beamed in approval of her work ethic. Ginny turned and faced her father. “Hi, Daddy.”

“Hi, Pumpkin,” he replied and kissed her on her cheek. “How are things?”

“Good,” she replied.

“I’m sorry about your mother this morning. She was adamant about checking up on you. She’s having a bit of a time trying to adjust to not having you around,” he explained and sighed. “It’s been harder on her since you are our only daughter and you’re on your own now.”

“That’s what Harry said,” Ginny muttered. “It’ll pass, won’t it?”

He smiled at her and nodded. “Give her time.”

Ginny nodded and hoped her mother would stop her intrusions and soon.

“You know, Ginny, I’m surprised to see you here at all,” Ron said after a few moments of silence.

“Why?” Ginny frowned and glanced at him.

“Well,” he sighed and shoved his hands in his pockets. “You and Harry are newlyweds after all. I thought you two would be too involved with each other to be bothered to come to work. Did you suddenly realize you had other obligations in the middle of your love fest?”

Ginny smacked him on the shoulder, not caring that her father and Percy were present.

“That is none of your business,” she replied loftily.

“In other words, you couldn’t keep your hands off him,” Ron grinned.

“So what if we were,” she answered as nonchalantly as possible. Why were her brothers so set on her embarrassment? “It’s not a crime.”

“Ah, so then you were engaged in newlywed activities,” Ron replied.

“I didn’t say that,” Ginny refuted.

“But that love bite on your neck does,” Ron pointed out.

Ginny gasped and was going to retaliate, but the doors of the lift had opened. Ron bolted out before the cool female voice could finish reciting what floor they were on.

“You just wait, Ron!” she called after him. Ron turned and grinned at her from halfway down the corridor, which walls were littered with Quidditch posters.

“I’m not the one giving you love bites!” he teased. “That would be dear old Harry!”

Ginny drew her wand ready to hex her brother into oblivion, but a hand came up and gently pushed her wand down.

“Ginny, I don’t think that’s a good idea,” Arthur said, smiling gently at her. “Let your brother be.”

She felt embarrassed. She forgot about her father and Percy still being in the lift with her. The urge to curse Ron increased at the embarrassment he had just put her through by pointing out the evidence of her love life with her husband.

She lowered her wand and pulled out a small mirror from her handbag. Trying hard to hide herself from her father in particular, Ginny used her wand and the mirror to hide the love bite Harry had so enthusiastically left on her neck from that morning’s escapades. She briefly wondered how she had missed that while getting ready.

The lift stopped again. Percy was quick in his goodbyes and promised Arthur that he would be up to their department as soon as his meeting with the Department of International Magical Cooperation was over. The doors closed after him, leaving Ginny alone with her father for the first time since her wedding.

“You know there’s nothing to be embarrassed about,” Arthur said soothingly once Ginny had put her mirror and wand away and broke the silence. One glance at him though told Ginny he was a little uncomfortable talking about the matter with her. Ginny couldn’t blame him; she didn’t exactly fancy discussing love bites with her father, nor the possible activities that went along with them.

He cleared his throat and looked determinedly down at the ground of the lift. “It’s good to have a healthy, err, well, let’s just say it’s healthy, shall we?”

Ginny nodded, unable to look at him. She tapped her fingers on the frame she was still clutching onto and quickly showed it to her father in an attempt to ease the awkwardness.

It wasn’t much longer until Ginny bade Arthur goodbye and was walking down the corridor that lead to her own department. The only person who was there was an elderly witch, Gretchen, who was the department’s secretary. Her grey, flyaway hair was tied back into a loose bun, and a pointed purple hat stood upon her head. She wore matching robes and was directing several rolls of parchments into different piles. She smiled warmly at the sight of Ginny.

“Well look who it is! Miss Weas – oh no, that’s not right anymore, is it? Mrs. Potter now!” Gretchen beamed and came around the desk to hug her. She pulled away still wearing her large smile. “Oh, Ginny, the wedding was simply lovely! Thank you so much for inviting us!”

“I’m so glad you were able to come,” Ginny replied and smiled at her.

“How was Hawaii?” Gretchen asked as she returned to her side of the desk. “Marvelous, I expect?”

“It was great,” Ginny replied. “I’ll have to bring the pictures in and show you.”

“That would be wonderful, dear!” Gretchen exclaimed. She sighed happily and glanced in the direction of Ginny’s cubicle. “I think you ought to get back there, dear. There’s a new one on your team starting today. Looks to be about your age and very eager to get started. Seems like a very nice young man.”

Ginny nodded. “Thanks, Gretchen.”

She quickly continued on her way, curious to see who her new co-worker was. There had been talks before she left on her honeymoon about someone new joining the team Ginny worked with in the department. Besides herself, there were two other witches about fifteen to twenty years older than her that worked with her; Martha Gibbons, who was their team leader, and Beatrice Stanley. The three of them worked well together but an increase in their workload made it necessary for another person to join their team.

Peeking inside the cubicle area she shared with Martha and Beatrice, Ginny saw a young blonde haired man setting up a desk in the corner across from hers.

“Hello,” she greeted him warmly and stepped inside. He turned and looked at her. Ginny smiled and strode purposefully toward him. “Welcome to our team. I’m Ginny Weasley –” she paused and laughed at her slip, “I mean Ginny Potter.”

“Jeremy Crick,” he introduced himself and smiled at her. “So is it Weasley or Potter?”

“It’s Potter,” she laughed and headed for her desk. “I just got married.”

“Oh, well, then congratulations,” he said.

“Thanks,” she smiled and set the frame on her desk. She noticed a pile of paperwork that had not been there when she left and sighed. “Well two weeks away and this is what welcomes me.”

“Honeymoon?” Jeremy asked from behind her. Ginny glanced behind her shoulder and nodded.

“Yes. Hawaii. This was what I was afraid of,” she said and gestured toward the pile. “I suppose that’s what I get for enjoying myself for a few weeks.”

He smiled and glanced at the pile of papers. “So, what exactly is all that?”

Ginny beckoned him forward and began to explain the procedures for each form she held in her hand. She realized about ten minutes into her explanation that Jeremy was no longer listening.

“Well I know the paperwork isn’t the most exciting thing,” she sighed and put the sea green form she was holding down. Jeremy snapped out of his trance and smiled bashfully at her.

“Sorry. I couldn’t help looking at your pictures,” he admitted and pointed at the nearest one. It was one of her and Harry standing in front of the Eiffel Tower during a surprise weekend holiday he took her on for her last birthday. “Is that Harry Potter?”

Ginny nodded. She watched Jeremy carefully for a moment trying to gauge what his reaction would be.

“Wow. That must be something to know him? So I guess you went to Hogwarts, too?” Jeremy asked and looked at her.

“Yes,” she confirmed and sat in her desk chair. “I take it you didn’t.”

He shook his head and leaned against her desk. “I was going to, but we were living in France. My parents are liaisons between this Ministry and the French one so I ended up going to Beauxbatons.”

“My sister-in-law went there. Fleur Delacour,” she said.

“Fleur Delacour?” he repeated in awe. “Your brother married her? Lucky bloke.”

Ginny kept her mouth firmly shut. Apparently they had a different viewpoint on that particular French witch.

“So are you and Harry Potter close?” he asked and glanced at another picture.

She was beginning to wonder if all Jeremy knew was Charms; either he steer cleared of the tabloids or he was really slow on the uptake. One would think that the Eiffel Tower picture would say it all since Harry was holding her a bit too intimately if all they were was friends.

“One can say that,” she replied and picked up the frame she had brought with her that day. “Really close.”

“What’s he like?” he asked quietly as if asking was taboo.

Ginny smiled as a million words to describe Harry came to mind. Her finger traced the frame in her hands. “He’s really down to Earth and caring and easy to get along with,” she explained and glanced up at Jeremy. He was looking at a picture of Harry in his Quidditch uniform. “Oh, and he’s an excellent kisser.”

Jeremy head swiveled around to stare at her in shock. His eyes were wide and his jaw was slack. He mouthed wordlessly at her clearly unable to form any words. His eyes took in her wedding ring to the pictures on the desk and he flushed.

“Ginny Potter . . . Harry Potter . . . blimey, this is embarrassing,” he muttered and pushed himself away from her desk. He rubbed at his eyes for a moment before looking at her. “I’m sorry. I don’t keep up with papers and rumors, and I’m nervous you know since this is my first day. You must think I’m one Knut short of a Sickle.”

Ginny laughed. “Don’t worry about it. You’re lucky Martha and Bea aren’t here yet; they would have strung you along for hours.”

He grinned sheepishly at her and quickly the pair of them jumped back into the explanation of paperwork.

Hours later Ginny found herself standing impatiently outside a small café in Diagon Alley. She had finally left her cubicle and coworkers after a busy morning of playing catch up with her work and was very anxious to see Mikayla. She couldn’t wait to tell her all the details of her honeymoon.

“Well look who we have here. Mrs. Potter, I presume?”

“I think that’s Mrs. Potter. But her lips aren’t attached to Mr. Potter’s so I can’t be too sure.”

Ginny closed her eyes and wondered why she had to be plagued with so many brothers. She turned and smiled tightly at her twin brothers.

“Can’t you two give it a rest?” she sighed in annoyance.

“Nope,” Fred replied.

“Not a chance,” George added.

“What are you two doing here anyway?” she asked and looked around the crowded streets hoping that Mikayla would come and rescue her. “Don’t you have a shop to run or something?”

“Good old Verity and Lee are holding it down for us while we grab some grub,” Fred explained. “So here we are, scavenging around for some food.”

“Well then go back to that and leave me alone. I’m waiting for Mikayla,” Ginny suggested and crossed her arms.

“Oh come on, Ginny-Winny. Don’t you want some company?” George asked and put his arm around her shoulders.

“No,” she replied and shoved his arm off. He put it back around her shoulders and she craned her neck to the side and tried to get away from him. “Can’t you annoy a different sibling besides me? Like Ron or Percy maybe?”

“As much fun as that sounds, you’re a lot closer and a much easier target at the moment,” Fred explained. His eyes caught something and they lit up. He glanced at George and it seemed as if he too had seen the same thing.

“Much easier,” George agreed and grinned.

“Well, we should go, shouldn’t we Gred?” Fred sighed and rubbed his hands together.

“Yeah, we should. We have a few errands to run,” George agreed. They quickly said their goodbyes and took off with their heads bent together. Ginny barely had time to think about what they were up to when another voice called out to her.

“Ginny!”

She turned and smiled as Mikayla sauntered her way toward her through the busy streets. She was wearing her lime-green Healer robes, her long dark hair thrown up in a bun and smiling brightly at her friend.

“Mika!” Ginny cried and engulfed her in a tight hug. She pulled away and smiled. “Oh, it’s so good to see you!”

“Oh? I thought you would have been too busy with that husband of yours to even think about me,” Mikayla teased and laughed at the blush on Ginny’s face.

“I managed to squeeze in a thought or two about you when Harry gave me a breather,” she replied. She gave her friend a mischievous smile. “Not that he allowed that to happen too often. Harry’s very selfish sometimes.”

Mikayla laughed as they walked arm in arm into the café. They were seated and ordered drinks and food before taking up conversation again.

“How are things at St. Mungo’s?” Ginny asked and picked up her glass of iced tea.

Mikayla let out a groan and allowed her forehead to make contact with the table. When she picked up her head again and sat up, Ginny noticed that her friend went from looking cheerful to utterly exhausted. Now that she was really looking at her, Ginny could see that something was off.

“Busy. You wouldn’t believe the amount of pregnant witches we have going into labor these past few weeks, and I’ve got my intern exams coming up in two weeks,” she replied tiredly. “Not to mention Colin feels like he’s being neglected and the stupid git doesn’t understand how stressed out I am right now.”

“Men are always gits,” Ginny said. Merlin knew she had Harry had their fair share of rows where he was being a git.

“We had a huge row the other night, Ginny,” Mikayla admitted and stared into her glass worriedly.

The state of happiness that Ginny had been set in for the past two weeks diminished somewhat at the look of distress on Mikayla’s face. She had almost forgotten about the troubles couples had at times, and it appeared that Mikayla and Colin were having a rough time. She knew something was aloof at her wedding but the moment she stepped foot in Hawaii, it had flown her mind. For a moment Ginny felt awful for having such a wonderful time with Harry while her friend was going through a rocky patch.

“What happened?” Ginny asked.

Mikayla sighed and closed her eyes for a moment. She seemed to be trying hard to keep her resolve. “I’ve been called out a lot to assist in deliveries, especially since one of our Healers has been out sick, and I don’t come home until really late. And when I do come home I have to study for my exams, but Colin has other things on his mind. I hardly get any sleep as it is without him bothering me for sex. He’s angry at me because I’m never home and says I’m the reason we haven’t had slept together in over a month. Anyway, one thing led to another and we shouted at each other and I ended up leaving him in our flat and went to Angelina’s. He doesn’t understand that my exams are important and that I can’t control when witches go into labor. I even told him he couldn’t understand because I have a real career and he just plays with a camera all day.”

“And all this has been going on since before the wedding hasn’t it?” Ginny asked.

“Yes,” Mikayla admitted. She had a gloomy look on her face.

“Why didn’t you tell me anything?’ Ginny sighed and reached across the table. She squeezed Mikayla’s hand in sympathy.

“I didn’t want to ruin your wedding by burdening you with my problems, and I didn’t want you to dwell on me during your honeymoon,” she said and squeezed Ginny’s hand back. She let out a shaky breath. “Ginny, he even accused me of sneaking behind his back with other guys. He doesn’t believe that I’ve really been at the hospital all this time, and he won’t believe that with obstetrics, nothing is predictable. Ginny, I don’t know what to do. I don’t want this to end.”

Her eyes were shining with tears and it scared Ginny. She never saw her friend like this before. She gave Mikayla an encouraging smile. “Have you tried talking with him since the fight?”

“No,” Mikayla shook her head. “I haven’t seen him in a few days.”

“Do you want me to try and talk some sense into him?” Ginny offered.

Mikayla’s eyes lit up and she nodded. “Could you try? Please? Maybe he’ll listen to you.”

Ginny nodded. “I’ll see what I can do.”

Mikayla smiled tearfully. She cleared her throat and picked up her glass. She drank from it and studied Ginny. “You got some sun, I see. So you must have figured out there was a beach outside your hotel room.”

“At some point, yes,” Ginny sighed and knew that Mikayla wanted to move her thoughts away from Colin. She decided to go right along with the teasing. “But that doesn’t exactly mean we changed our activities once out on the beach.”

Mikayla froze and stared at Ginny in shock. She glanced around before leaning in close. “Did you really do that out on a beach in the middle of the day?”

Ginny’s cheeks flushed slightly. She had been asked that very question the night before by Tabitha but Ginny had been saved by Peter’s refusal to be carried off to bed. She bit her bottom lip and leaned closer to Mikayla.

“Well, not in the day time,” she admitted quietly. Mikayla’s eyes grew even wider.

“Ginny! That’s so – I can’t believe you actually did that!” she whispered scandalously. Her eyes darted around the café before settling them on Ginny again. “I’m shocked!”

“It was Harry’s idea,” she whispered quickly and looked down at the table. She could feel the tips of her ears burning. “See, he took me on this dinner cruise on our last night there and afterwards he suggested we take a walk on the beach one last time. We sat down on the shore and one thing led to another and we. . . .”

She trailed off, gesturing with her hands. She looked up to see Mikayla’s shocked face still looking at her. “Oh, stop staring at me like that.”

“I can’t help it,” Mikayla admitted and sat back in her chair. “Two weeks of shagging and already the two of you are doing far more adventurous things than Colin and I have in the two years or so we’ve been dating.”

“What can I say,” Ginny sighed with a sly grin. “We’re newlyweds.”

Mikayla shook her head and smiled at her friend. She crossed her arms. “I told you he’d love that suit. And you wanted to go with a one-piece.”

“And I humbly thank you for your advice,” Ginny replied. “You are useful for something after all.”

Mikayla’s response was cut off by the arrival of their food. She merely gave Ginny a glare, and the two dug right into their meals.

Throughout their lunch, Ginny described as much as she could about Hawaii and what she and Harry had done there. Mikayla hung on her every word and shot off question after question. She sighed over all the romantic things Harry had done and laughed at all of Ginny’s funny stories and even giggled over Francisco.

“I’m so sorry I don’t have any pictures to show you,” Ginny sighed and pushed her nearly empty plate away. “I forgot them this morning.”

“I can see that,” Mikayla replied. Her eyes were fixed at a point just above Ginny’s shoulder. She smiled. “Harry’s a big distraction isn’t he?”

Ginny frowned. “What makes you say that?”

The dark-skinned witch merely continued to smile and tapped at a spot on her own neck. “That.”

Ginny grabbed an unused spoon from the table and angled it to peer at her neck. Sure enough her Charm had worn off and the love bite was clear as day again. She swore under her breath and quickly pulled out her wand. She hoped the twins hadn’t noticed it.

“He’s enthusiastic, isn’t he?” Mikayla teased. Ginny glanced at her and saw the mirth dancing gaily in her dark eyes. “Or does he just like to mark his territory?”

“Keep up the comments and I’ll revoke your title as godmother,” Ginny threatened. She glanced at her neck again, using the spoon and saw that they mark had disappeared. When she looked up at Mikayla again she saw her friend looking back at her with wide eyes.

“What?” Ginny asked.

“You’re pregnant already?” she whispered.

Ginny shook her head vehemently. “No! Heavens, no! I just always thought you’d be the godmother of my children whenever I have them.”

“You want me to be godmother of your children?” she asked in surprise.

Ginny paused for a moment and smiled gently at her friend. “Of course I do. Who else do you think I would ask?”

“Ginny,” Mikayla said breathlessly. “I’m honored. I just didn’t think you’d be thinking of such things so soon.”

She had a point, Ginny realized. She wasn’t entirely sure where her words had come from and thought that maybe it had stemmed from her conversation with Harry that morning. After all choosing godparents was an important issue when it came to discussing children, wasn’t it?

“Well, why not?” Ginny replied and watched as their empty plates disappeared. “I’m sure Harry would agree with me. We were talking about having kids this morning.”

“You were?” Mikayla asked still looking shocked by this information.

Ginny nodded. She grinned as she thought back on the conversation. “We both want at least three kids.”

“Three?” It seemed like Mikayla was stuck in a permanent state of surprise.

“It’s not like discussing how many kids you want is a taboo conversation, Mikayla. Don’t you think it’s something you should be talking about before you actually have one? It’s important; at least I think it is. Is it so surprising that I would talk with my husband about that?” Ginny sighed.

“No,” Mikayla replied and seemed to have realized how Ginny had perceived her reaction. She smiled in apology. “I’m sorry. It’s just strange you know? Talking about having children hasn’t really been something we discussed together like this. It certainly isn’t at the forefront of my mind right now.”

It hit Ginny then that what she considered important now had suddenly changed. To her and to Harry, talking about having children was something they had to discuss, where before it was just a fleeting comment every now and then. To Mikayla it wasn’t something she had to really think about, not now at least.

She looked at her best friend and realized that things would be different between them. They would always be friends, of course but Ginny was married and Mikayla was single.

“Ginny?” Mikayla’s voice broke Ginny’s thoughts. “Hey, you okay?”

Ginny nodded and smiled at her. She glanced at the clock and sighed. “I ought to head back to work now. I think I’ve outdone my lunch hour.”

“Merlin’s beard!” Mikayla cried and stood up. “I’m late! Oh, Healer Mathis is going to be so angry. I’m sorry, Ginny, I’ve got to go!”

She threw a few Galleons on the table and hurried out of the café. Ginny soon followed Mikayla’s lead and Apparated back to the Ministry.

She hurried through the Atrium and into a lift which seemed to be taking much too long to take her up to her floor. She finally arrived and quickly made her way back to her department. Ginny smiled at Gretchen and finally arrived back in her cubicle. Jeremy was the only one there.

“Hi,” she said breathlessly and sank into her seat. “Lunch took longer than I thought. Where are Bea and Martha?”

“They were called to a crime scene just after they got back from lunch. They don’t know how late you are,” Jeremy smiled at her.

Ginny sighed in relief. She knew what would have happened if they had been here. She did not want to endure anymore teasing.

“A package came for you about ten minutes ago,” Jeremy said and gestured towards her desk.

She looked at it for the first time and saw a wrapped box sitting on her desk. She looked at it warily even though she knew all packages were screened before it arrived to anyone in the Ministry.

“Who sent it?” she asked and picked it up carefully. She shook it but heard nothing.

“Some red-headed bloke,” Jeremy frowned. “He said he was a brother of yours.”

Ginny groaned. She knew the twins were up to something.

“Here.”

She looked up and saw Jeremy holding out a small envelope. “He said to give this to you first.”

She took the envelope and ripped it open. She unfolded the note and read:

Dear Ginny,

It was so lovely to see you today. We always enjoy a nice chat with our favorite sister. We decided to send you this little gift since we think it would be very useful for you. There’s a second one for dear Harry. We thought he might need one too. Oh, and let him know we’d love to book him for our next party to show off his hula dancing skills for everyone to enjoy. Grass skirts are really his thing!

Love Your Favorite Brothers,

Forge and Gred


Rolling her eyes at the note, she set it aside and cautiously opened the package. She squeezed her eyes shut and shoved her chair back. Once she was sure nothing was going to explode, she opened her eyes and looked at the package. It lay perfectly still and looked rather normal on her desk. She knew Jeremy thought she was acting a little strange and decided to explain it later.

Moving closer she opened up the box and looked inside.

Two scarves lay inside. A dark green one was marked with her name and another one the same color as her hair with Harry’s name. A small note was on top of them. Ginny picked it up and read it:

Thought you could use a scarf. Useful for those love bites!

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