Ginny Weasley
Eridanus

Once upon a time, many years ago, a baby girl was born into a family that already had six little boys. Everyone who knew the family shared in their joy and watched over the little girl as best they could. As she grew up, the girl became brave and strong and loyal. Fiercely loyal.

She was a happy girl waiting to find her place in the world and join her brothers at that magical place they called Hogwarts, the place where the boy she loved lived. Her school years were filled with joy and mischief, briefly interrupted by evil wizards and heartbreak, but she never stopped loving the boy that she had seen on the day of her brother Ronald’s first trip to Hogwarts. The girl excelled at many things, most notably Quidditch, the sport of the golden snitch and after a long struggle, she finally got the boy that she loved.

When she finished school, she was offered her dream job. All day she swooped through the air, her hair flying in the breeze and thought of her luck. The boy worked at the Ministry ridding the world of evil and many people described them as the perfect match. They were destined to be together. Destined for a happy ending.

Then the boy and the girl got married. Their whole family was there to watch them and the only thing to spoil their day was a small grey cloud on the horizon. It never reached them on that day and the sun shone brightly, but it seemed to be getting closer ever so slowly.

The next thing that the boy and girl knew they were going to have a little baby of their own. The girl had to stop flying, but she didn’t mind because she loved the idea of the little baby as much as she loved the boy. Everything would be perfect. If she couldn’t fly any longer she would write about flying and when her little baby grew up she would teach him to fly too. But, unfortunately, all was not well. Every day that the baby came closer to being born the little grey cloud edged closer and closer also and grew bigger and bigger, until one day, when the cloud was clearly seen overhead and a fork of lightning streaked across the sky. All was most definitely not well








Her eyes fluttered open. She was in a bland room. A bland room full of light that blinded her. A bland room that made her want to close her eyes and sleep forever.

“Well, look at you sleeping beauty. I asked your visitors to leave you alone for an hour or two earlier so that you could get some rest, Ginny.”

“Thank you,” she said as she drowsily hauled herself up into a sitting position.

“Would you like to hold him again, Petal?” The nurse extended the bundle of blankets out to her as she lay in the bed.

No. I don’t want to hold it. Don’t make me hold it.

“I’m tired.”

“I know you are, sweetheart, but don’t you think little James would be hungry by now?” The woman smiled at her kindly. She didn’t need anyone to look at her kindly, she was fine. She was just tired. “Go on, have a go at feeding him.”

She took the bundle that the woman was brandishing at her. Was there any need to be so forceful? She could have done it later, or tomorrow. She lifted the baby up to her chest and looked at it, waited for it to do something. She didn’t know what to do. It didn’t know what to do. She looked at the nurse for guidance.

“Hold him a bit closer, pet.” She did it. It didn’t respond, it didn’t latch on, it didn’t do anything. It just looked at her, making her feel guilty. Accusing her. She didn’t need to be accused by anyone, especially not this thing. This thing that she’d carried around for months only to have it wail the first time she held it, only for it to make her want to cry too and only for it to have ceased crying when the nurse took it.

“Take him back. Please.” The nurse came and lifted the baby from her arms.

“Well, we’ll try again later, eh? It’s nothing to worry about, it happens to lots of women. The poor little mite doesn’t know what to do yet, that’s all.”

It happened to lots of women. It was fine. Nothing to worry about. Lots of women had their lives snatched away from them. Lots of women had husbands off on deadly missions in Botswana when their babies were born. Lots of women carried a baby for nine months and bonded with it and then didn’t know what to do with it the second they were born. Lots.

The nurse placed the baby carefully in the cot at the bottom of the bed and tucked it in. The baby liked her. The nurse liked it too. Maybe she should take it. Maybe they should just go and have a happy life together and leave Ginny forgotten about in the bed. Harry could go too. Maybe being alone was all that Ginny deserved.

“Try and get some rest, my love, I’ll be in checking on you and Jamesy every hour or so.”

“His name isn’t Jamesy.” She muttered bitterly from the bed, drawing the covers up around her chin. She couldn’t quite explain why it mattered so much.

“Sorry, I didn’t quite catch that?” The nurse was still smiling. Why? Why was she always smiling?

“Nothing. I’m just tired.”

“Get some rest, while you can, dear, you’ve got enough family to have a quidditch match out there. I can send some in if you like? Don’t worry, I’ll tell them to be quiet.”

“No, don’t. I’m tired.”








Her eyes fluttered open. She was in a bland, desolate room. A bland, desolate room full of light that blinded her. A bland, desolate room that made her want to close her eyes and sleep forever.

She glanced over at the clock by her bedside. It was three o’clock in the afternoon, meaning that she had been sleeping for two hours. She knew she should be throwing back the covers right now and bouncing out of bed to see her baby. But she was so tired. She was contemplating trying to go back to sleep when she heard voices outside her bedroom door. The people on the outside were probably unaware that it was ajar.

“I just… I don’t know what to do anymore, Hermione. It’s been a fortnight. A fortnight and she’s barely gone near him!”

She heard the hushed whispers and desperation clearly, but she couldn’t feel it. All that she could feel was numbness; a numbness that was usually perforated throughout the day with guilt. The guilt that she felt for not loving it and the guilt that others made her feel for not loving it.

“Have you thought about counselling?”

Counselling? Is she really that bad?”

“Harry, be honest with yourself. She needs help of some sort. We all hate seeing her like this, it’s just so unlike her.”

“God, I know… And I don’t know how much longer I can get off work either. There’s only so much sympathy leave they can give me.”

She imagined the rueful smile her husband would be wearing and snorted derisively. He always liked to play the big man, treating her like an invalid was just part of that.

“You always try and deal with things on your own, Harry, but you don’t have to. We’re all here for you and Ginny if you need it. Ron and I would be happy to look after James any time to give you a break, or let you and Ginny spend some time together.”

“I might take you up on that sometime…But there are times, when I really and truly think she’s better, or there was never anything wrong because I see a flash of the real Ginny.”

“You just have to remember that she’s going to get better, maybe not tomorrow and maybe not next week, but when she gets help she will get better.”

They kept talking, but Ginny had heard enough to persuade her into getting up. They had no idea about what was real and what wasn’t. She pulled back the duvet and clambered out of bed fully clothed, immediately making her way out of the room to where the two voices were. She was greeted overly cheerily the moment she appeared in the doorway.

“Hello, love, did you have a good sleep?”

“Ginny, you’re looking wonderful!”

“Excuse me, I’m going to see i-, him.”

“You mean our son, Gin.”

“Yes, that’s what I said, Harry.”

They probably thought she missed the pitying looks they sent her, because they were so discreet. Blatantly discreet.

She ventured into the baby’s room and stalled. She didn’t need to prove anything to them, she would come back and see him later. But they were behind her, they’d followed her and now she couldn’t get out. And now it was crying. It was lying in its cot and crying because she was a bad mother. She didn’t need to be reminded that she was.

“Why don’t you lift him up, Gin? He just wants a cuddle.”

“No, I… I think he wants to sleep, Harry. We’re too noisy, we should just leave him.”

“If you do that he’ll scream himself hoarse.”

“I didn’t know that you had a child, Hermione. How funny, I thought you would have told me if that happened, especially since you’re the godmother of mine.” Ginny’s vehemence sliced through Hermione’s advice with ease.

“Ginny, I didn’t mean it like that, honestly! I onl-”

“Well, for both of your information, I’m taking James to the park for a walk.”

Why did I say that? I don’t want to take it out. I don’t want to. I’ll lose it. It’ll get kidnapped. It’ll die. I’m not fit to be a mother.
“That’s a great idea! Give me five minutes and I’ll be ready to go.”

“No, Harry. I’m going by myself.”

“Are you sure you’re ready for that, Gin?”

What is that supposed to mean?” She spat.

They all sat there silently judging her, but never saying it to her face because they didn’t want to upset her. They didn’t want to upset Crazy Ginny who was going over the edge. Crazy Ginny was going to show them that she was perfectly capable of looking after her own child.

“You know what, Harry? It doesn’t even bloody matter! Like fuck it does. Just let me past so that I can get my stuff.”

Not knowing what to say, Harry moved out of the way to make sure Ginny had room to get past. This was the first time in four weeks that Ginny had shown any inclination towards James, but Harry still had doubts in his mind. Through her own choice she had no idea how to look after him. He had no idea what to do, should he let her go or should he stop her?.

Ginny barrelled past Harry and Hermione and went back into her bedroom where she hastily snatched up her coat and threw a scarf around her neck. She then stormed back into James’ bedroom and began to parcel him up, rather inexpertly, in warm clothing.

“Why don’t I come with you, Gin? I need a good walk,” Hermione fought to keep the worried tone out of her voice, but Ginny had become quite adept at picking up such tones over the last while.

“Then go and take a flipping dander in the Forbidden Forest,” she snarled.

Ginny then lifted her son and stampeded down the stairs with him. She found that the faster she went the less time she had to think about what she was doing. She didn’t want to think about it. She placed him in his pram, which was waiting reliably by the door, as Hermione and Harry looked on forlornly from the stairs.

“I’ll see you later.” Her farewell was tersely spoken.

“Goodbye, Ginny.”

“I’ll see you later, Gin.”

And with that Ginny awkwardly wheeled the bulky pram containing the remnants of her shattered career and the source of her guilt out the front door.








Her eyes fluttered open. She was in a bland, desolate, depressing room. A bland, desolate, depressing room full of light that blinded her. A bland, desolate, depressing room that made her want to close her eyes and sleep forever.

It was crying again. Why was it always crying? Couldn’t it leave her be for two seconds? She was so tired.

Harry had obviously been the one to turn the light on and she noted him padding out of the room to quell the source of the noise. To make it shut up. Its shrieking got louder before it calmed down. A couple of month’s worth of sleepless nights had not done the couple any good. She watched as Harry arrived back in the room cradling it in his arms.

“Any time I tried to set him back in his cot he started crying,” he explained. He seemed to be loaded down with explanations these days.

“Alright.”

Harry paced the room with the little bundle singing a song to it that she had never heard before. It was probably a muggle one. It didn’t really matter what it was anyway, as long as the baby went back to sleep.

Ginny knew she had a problem now. The counsellor at Saint Mungo’s had told her so. It was called Postnatal Depression and apparently, many women went through it. She supposed it was probably the same amount of women who had husbands in Botswana when the baby was born, but the counsellor had assured her that she wasn’t alone on this one. She wasn’t the only failure out there. Of course, she hadn’t quite phrased it like that.

“Gin, would you mind if I brought him in the bed with us? Only until he settles down.”

She hesitated. A good mother would, but everyone knew she wasn’t a good mother. She’d tried to be, but she wasn’t.

“Alright.”

“Alright?”

“Yes, until he settles down.”

This was what the counsellor called progress. She was trying, it was alright to be worried, but if she tried she would be less worried. That was what the counsellor said.

Harry struggled with pulling the covers down to get into the bed whilst holding James, so Ginny helped. She didn’t take James, but she arranged the blankets to let the two of them get in. It was progress. Harry got in carefully with James hugged close.

“Are you sure that this is alright?” He asked cautiously.

“It’s alright,” she said as she glanced at the baby that her husband was holding so lovingly.

He was so tiny. Were babies always so small and fragile? She reached out and touched the baby’s cheek. Harry knew better than to comment on it. He treated it as if it were a normal occurrence while his insides were ready to burst with joy. It was progress.

The boy and girl would have their happy ending.

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