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AN: Somewhat sad fic ahead. Man your tissues … or something. Rated PG-13 for language (can’t be too careful) and … that’s about it. Enjoy! Summary: “She deserved the sky, the moon, and the stars. She deserved to be loved, cherished, and appreciated. She deserved more than me.” Me; the thick, redheaded, poor-as-dirt, sixth of seven nobody, yes, that’s me, Ron Weasley. I was so little, so petty, so … not qualified for her. She was the brains, the beauty under the untamed brown hair, the sense of right and wrong, and the everything else … my everything. That was her. How she ever saw the light in me, while I always thought that I was a burned out bulb, I’ve never been able to figure out. But somehow she saw it, for some reason she chose me and I chose her even though she had always been chosen in my eyes. I had always fancied her despite how hard I tried to push that fact out of my mind, no matter how hard I strived to not show my love for her. The sarcastic comments I would give her, how I would roll my eyes when she started up one of her homework tangents, how I acted like she annoyed the hell out of me, which she did often. It was all a cover-up that I thought no one would be able to see through, but apparently she did … along with everyone else I’ve found out. I loved her more than what words could have expressed. I just wish I had shown it so much more than I did. If I had been deserving of her, I would have said ‘I love you’ a thousand more times than the few times I did. I would have hugged her every night and never let go. I would have showered her in the affection that she deserved. If I had been deserving … if I hadn’t been so late, so stupid, so incredibly thick. She deserved the sky, the moon, and the stars. She deserved to be loved, cherished, and appreciated. She deserved more than me. I wish I could take back time and change it. I wish I could go back and kiss her one more time. I would give anything to hear her voice again, smell the scent of cinnamon that always seemed to linger around her. Anything. I sit in the common room, in a chair facing the fire, ignoring all the idiots who try to ‘console me.’ They don’t really care. They don’t know how it feels to know this sense of loss. They have no bloody idea. None of them. Crookshanks circles my feet and eventually jumps into my lap, bits of his ginger hair flying into the air as he makes this movement. I stroke him absentmindedly as I stare into the flames. Him I don’t ignore. He doesn’t press me on the subject of ‘how horribly sad I must feel,’ he doesn’t offer me ‘to come over and play a game of Exploding Snap to make me feel better.’ He solely knows the feeling of my loss. He knows what it feels like to miss her so much that it shadows your life, your every thought. He knows. I close my eyes and wish so hard that when I reopen them she’ll come through the portrait hole, her arms laden with books from her trip to the library, a flustered smile on her face. She would set her books on a table and cross the room to me, giving me a peck on the cheek. I would say ‘I love you,’ for no reason at all, simply because it’s the truth. When I open my eyes, she isn’t there, I knew she wouldn’t be there, but some small irrational bit of hope in me actually thought that she would be. Sobbing Mrs. Granger at the funeral had said, “Hermione will live in all our eyes forever. She will never have truly left us. She’s here; my baby will always be here, with all of us. Her spirit will live on in all our hearts. Her love of her friends, family, and everyone who meant so much to her will always exist. She went down as a fighter, and will continue to live as one in all of us; Hermione Granger, fighter, friend, family member, loved one, one of the brightest witches – one of the brightest people – of her age. She shall live on in our hearts.” “I was never worth any of her time, Crookshanks,” I muttered, barely opening my lips so no one could hear. “I wasn’t worthy of her. She was so much that I could never have been. Brave, smart, noble, responsible, caring …” And I trailed off as my eyes began to fill with those bloody tears that had been plaguing me for the last three days. I wouldn’t let myself cry again. I wouldn’t allow it. Mum had always said that crying never solved anything and that was true. Crying wouldn’t bring Hermione back. It wouldn’t solve any of my problems. All crying would do is aid myself drowning in sorrow. Crookshanks titled his head and looked at me with his huge yellow eyes, like he was in disbelief at what I had said. Stop being stupid, I told myself. Cats’ eyes don’t hold any expression. You’re hallucinating. Somewhere, a voice sounded. It was faint – very faint – but it was there. “That’s not true, Ron.” I have to be hallucinating, I told myself. You don’t hear voices. It isn’t real. It can’t be real. It just can’t be. It just doesn’t make any sense. Someone just doesn’t start hearing voices. It’s you wanting to hear Hermione’s voice. That’s it. It’s not real. “Ron, you were more worthy of me than anyone. I wasn’t worthy of you.” Stop it, I commanded myself. Stop doing this to yourself. Hermione’s … dead, you can’t be hearing her voice. You want to hear her voice but that isn’t going to happen so stop imagining it. “You’ve always been brave, Ron, and so easy-going, but me, I’ve always been an uptight, bossy mess.” “You have not,” I muttered absently to myself. No. Stop. This isn’t real. It’s someone playing a prank and a censoreding awful one at that. I whipped around in my chair to observe the common room. Someone had to be behind my chair, whispering this rubbish to me. They thought they were being funny. But no one was there. Only Dean and Seamus were still in the common room, on the other side of it, playing a game of Exploding Snap. “Hermione,” I whispered. This time there wasn’t a reply. A cool breeze drifted across my face, somehow soothing me. The breeze ruffled my hair and seemed to linger as it made its way across my cheek, almost like the wind was caressing it. “Hermione,” I breathed and then the breeze, Hermione, was gone. Just like that. I sighed, slumping even more in my armchair, amazed at whatever had just happened. It had been Hermione, as a ghost, a spirit, whatever you want to call it. It had been her. And then the voice, even fainter now, said something. It was so soft that I could barely hear it, but I made it out perfectly. And the three words that Hermione said meant more than anything to me. Those three simple words carried so much. “I love you.”

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