Ginny looked on in horror as the light raced towards her. She should have reached into her cloak and pulled out her wand but she was frozen, entranced by the light that would soon send her to an early death. She was unable to see the shocked faces of the men before her, one whose face was already covered in tears yelling for her to take cover.
“Mobilarbus Arboreus!” shouted Neville Longbottom who had just arrived on the scene. But this command Ginny did not hear. Ginny looked on in fright as the massive Whomping Willow before her lifted itself from its roots, twining her between its massive branches.
“No!” her scream was lost in a brilliant flash of green, as she was hurled into the sky.
Ginny closed her eyes as her body fell back towards the earth. The wind whipped around her madly. It was so very cold and the air seemed to rush out of her lungs. She was falling through the clouds faster now, the earth rising up to meet her. Instead of the harsh impact Ginny was sure was imminent, she found herself being lifted.
“I’ve got you Ginny.”
“Draco!” Ginny sobbed into the folds of his cloak as the broom carrying the both of them drifted towards the ground. She collapsed against him as the broom landed, clinging onto him as tightly as he held on to her. She burrowed her face against his neck unable to stop her trembling. “I’ve never been so frightened in m life.” Ginny whispered
“I was scared too.” But it wasn’t Draco that Ginny found herself holding on to. She looked up to see green instead of grey.
Harry who was much too ill to have left St.Mungo’s, had saved her. He looked as tired as she thought she must be as well. His breath came in gasps as he stared at her, running his fingers through her hair as if to assure himself that she was indeed in one piece. She wrapped her own arms around his neck not wanting to ever let go of the safety she had lost long ago.
The other man who stood but a few feet away could only watch his love take comfort in another. He was tempted to rip them apart but was held away by the firm grasp of Neville. “Let them be.”
“If you had your broom, you would have done the same. Now give me your wand Draco.”
Before Draco could say no, Neville had summoned it from his hands. “What do you think you’re doing ?!” Draco seethed as Neville proceeded to snap the wand in half.
“You’ll acquire another one.” Neville said calmly.
Draco fumed inside. He had made a mistake. A mistake that nearly cost Ginny her life. But did Neville still think him a threat? “I didn’t mean to hurt her!”
“Hurt her? Hurt her?” Harry jumped up away from Ginny advancing towards Draco, his voice rising with each word. “You almost killed Ginny!” Harry waved to Seamus and Dean, motioning them forward. “Arrest this man. He’s used an unforgivable, the Avada Kedavra.”
“Liar!” Draco spat lunging for Harry. He could go to Azkaban. The memories of the place still haunted his dreams. He could still remember the screams, the stench, the joyless aura that seemed to suck any happiness out of him even without the Dementors. Death would be preferable to being back in that dungeon.
Ginny jumped into the fray, placing herself between both men. “Stop it! The both of you!” He followed her eyes to the blackened Whomping Willow that had stood on Hogwarts Grounds for Centuries. The condition of the tree spoke the awful truth. He couldn’t meet her eyes when she whispered quietly, “How could you Draco?”
“Ginny, I -” Draco said stepping closer to her, wanting to draw her up in his arms and forget everything. Couldn’t she see that he loved her so much he had nearly lost his mind?
He was stopped by Ginny who placed her small hand upon his chest. He reached for it just as she pushed him away, sending him stumbling backwards. “I can’t bear to hear your excuses Draco. I can’t bear to even look at you!”
“It’s all Potter's fault!” Draco yelled, regaining his footing. If Potter hadn’t come to Hogwarts looking for him he wouldn’t be faced with the possibility of prison and the loss of his wife. It wasn’t fair. Potter was the one looking for trouble. Just like in their school days, he would be rewarded for it. This time the reward would be much more than mere points, it would be his own wife.
“Sorry about this mate.” Dean said to Draco, drawing suspicious glances from Harry due to the politeness of the request, “I’ll need to check your wand.”
Draco would have to thank Neville. Not only had he just saved him from a return trip to Azkaban but it was Neville whose quick thinking had truly saved Ginny. Draco had no doubt that even without Harry taking off in his broom, Neville and he had enough time to make her landing safe. “Taking the credit just like you’ve always done Potter!” Draco said through clenched teeth.
“Boyhood squabbles, you know.” Neville answered Dean, dangling Draco’s destroyed wand from his hand.
“You’ll have me believe all this is a boyhood squabble?” Headmisstress McGonagall arrived on the chaotic scene , eying the Whomping Willow warily. She wrung her hands looking from Draco to Harry ,shaking her head. “When will you two ever…” She stopped in midsentence rushing over to Ginny. “Stop this nonsense immediately! We must get this child to St. Mungo’s!”
“I’m fine.” Ginny said, her actions going against her words as she swayed unsteadily on her feet. “I’m perfectly fine.”
Draco looked horrified at the blood pooled around Ginny, blood that hadn’t been there just moments before. He rushed towards Ginny, catching her before she collapsed on the ground. He held her against him offering apologies to Ginny and praying to the Gods that they would look beyond his past unbelief to spare his wife. He would believe in such beings if the Gods would save her.
*** Ginny awoke to find herself surrounded by the whirr of hospital machinery. Various potions were scattered atop a nightstand close to her bed. She reached for a bottle intending to find out exactly what she was being treated for. The last thing she remembered was wondering why her skirt had been covered with blood. A bout of nausea hit her just then sending the glass bottle crashing to the floor below. Ginny grabbed a basin instead wretching violently into it and wishing for it all to stop.
A familiar blond woman entered the room. The same healer that had taken care of Harry just days before. “You’re awake.” Healer Gordon said, a bit too chipper in Ginny’s opinion.
“Of course I’m awake!” snapped Ginny, wiping away the traces of her sickness. Immediately regretting her tone of voice. “Look, I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have yelled." Ginny motioned to the basin, "As you can see I am feeling quite ill .”
The healer conjured up a glass of water, offering it to Ginny. “It’s completely understandable Miss Potter. It’s natural for you to be worried. But let me assure you, we have done everything in our power to keep the both of you safe.”
The smiling demeanor of Healer Gordon confused Ginny even more. The both of them safe? The last thing Ginny remembered was blood staining her skirt. Had Draco’s curse hurt her in some way? Had Draco’s curse harmed Harry?
“Is he ok?” Ginny asked, hoping that Harry hadn’t suffered any more than he already had. How could Draco have done such a horrible thing? She refused to think of Draco, her heart and mind torn at the thought of his actions. How could the man she loved, a man she trusted and knew as changed, do something so despicable as to use an unforgivable? The disappointment was overwhelming.
“Sure it’s a he, are you?”
Ginny was becoming even more irritated with the sunny disposition of Healer Gordon. She had almost died and now this healer had the gall to laugh about Harry. “Is he alright?” Ginny demanded ,swinging her legs off the bed determined to get her own answers.
“Miss Potter you need to be back in bed!” Ginny was no match for Healer Gordon’s strength as she was put back into bed rather forcefully. “I know you want to tell everyone the good news but now is not the time. You and the baby need to rest.”
It was one those odd moments in space and time where the world seemed to stop turning. Ginny’s fingers barely grazed her still flat stomach. After all this time, was it possible? Three long years she and Draco had tried. The daughter of Molly Weasley had felt like such a failure. She would hold her many nieces and nephews wishing that they were her own. How desperately she wanted a child yet unable to have one of her own. “Baby?” she whispered more to herself than the healer. She burst into tears, but they were not of sadness. “I’m going to have a baby!”
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