A boisterous crowd had gathered outside what looked to be an empty department store. Ginny shook her head at the sight of wizards, no doubt from the Daily Prophet.
"The Ministry will have their hands full performing Memory Charms tonight," she chuckled to no one in particular, as she looked at the confused glances of Muggle passerby. Aurors and various Ministry officials were outside the decrepit store keeping reporters away from the biggest story in a century since Voldemort's defeat.
Tightening the scarf around her hair and readjusting her sunglasses she walked up to the dirty window requesting passage from the broken dummy being displayed. She entered, unnoticed into St Mungo's Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries. The hospital smell attacked her senses the moment she stepped inside. It smelled of healing potions, cleanliness, and death. Never before had she felt so nauseated.
"Are you ok Miss?" a plump blond witch asked with concern.
Ginny faked a smile, "Yes, Yes I' m quite fine, thank you," she said clutching her abdomen. A sense of dread overcame her as she slowly made her way to the 4th floor visitor's area. Her thoughts drifted to Draco. Guilt washed over her entire being, as she thought of the blond man she had left sleeping soundly in their bed. Emotional pain had seemed to ebb away when she had been in Draco's arms. Only temporarily. Daylight had a way of uncovering things best hidden in darkness.
Turning the corner she caught sight of mostly reds with a sprinkling of black and brown heads. All of the Weasley clan was there waiting to welcome Harry Potter into the land of the living.
Sitting next to Charlie she removed her disguise. He rubbed her back soothingly as if letting her know that somehow, everything would work itself out.
"Some tea dear?" Molly Weasley asked. A faint smile crossed Ginny's face. Leave it up to her mother to think food and drink could make everything better.
"No thanks, mum," Ginny was unsure if she could keep even tea down.
A handsome young black man in official ministry robes took the empty seat next to her. "How are you holding up?"
"Do you want the truth?" she asked her old friend Dean Thomas, Ginny sighed, "Even I don't know how I am supposed to feel."
"Then I won't ask how Draco feels, although I can gather a guess. "
"Naturally he's upset. I just wish he could understand, although how can I expect him when I can't even begin to understand what all this means ."
"Which brings me to what I was going to inform you of, after Harry visits with you and your family, the ministry will be debriefing him today," he motioned towards Seamus Finnegan, Percy and Ron conversing in a corner , " Since he's been asleep we haven't been able to question him. You'll have your answers soon, I promise."
Curiosity had been burning inside Ginny since she read the Daily Prophet yesterday. It had not gone into detail about the circumstances surrounding Harry's rescue. Various scenarios had gone through her mind and she tried not to think of the suffering he may have had to endure.
A nurse came out to the waiting room, " Mrs.- " the nurse's voice wavered as if unsure how to address Ginny, "Potter, er, Malfoy, Mr. Potter is awake now. He's been requesting his wife."
Ginny nodded as she rose from the chair. The Weasley family including the twins were uncharacteristically quiet. Everyone stayed seated knowing how important it was that Harry first see Ginny.
A question that was on everyone's lips was answered by Ron and Hermione's young son James, "Where's Uncle Draco?" Hermione hurriedly picked him up, with a sympathetic glance towards Ginny as she interested James in a stuffed Dragon.
"You have to tell him Ginny," Ron said softly not looking at Ginny. She could almost make out tears in her brother's eyes. Ron the famed auror, who had lived with the now erroneous fact that his best friend had died. The past 6 years had been as painful for Ron as for Ginny. Blaming himself constantly for Harry's death, Ron had become quite a bitter man. "The Ministry will be conducting a press conference tomorrow morning, it's best he hear it from you and not from the Daily Prophet."
Expressing their support Molly Weasley and Fred's wife Angelina gave her a quick hug. No words had to be said. They all knew the difficult task Ginny had to face.
Ginny followed the nurse with nervous yet anticipating steps. The day Ginny heard about Harry she raced to St Mungo's grabbing a coworker's broom. He had been given a sleeping draught then. So thin Harry was, she almost didn't recognize him. Holding his hand Ginny had talked to him, sang to him, even imagined he squeezed her hand and perhaps he did.
What would she say to him, now that he was fully awake?
"You have 10 minutes, Miss, er,"
"Ginny, just call me Ginny" Ginny wrung her hands nervously, hoping that the rest of the hospital staff would have sense not to call her Mrs. Malfoy in front of Harry.
"You can visit for 10 minutes, dear, then the healers must run additional tests." Opening the door for Ginny, the nurse motioned her in.
The boy who lived, now a man, slowly raised his head from the hospital bed. Ginny winced seeing him raise the rest of his upper body from the bed. It obviously took much effort on his part. Now cleanly shaven he more closely resembled the Harry that she once knew.
"Ginny," he called for her, a weak yet wanting voice.
"Oh Harry!" Ginny sat on his bed, fighting back tears. She propped his pillow behind his back. It hurt her to see him so physically uncomfortable. Yesterday she had been in shock at his appearance. Today was no different. His bones could be easily seen and his eyes were sunken in. It was hard to imagine that he once had the body of a lean yet muscular seeker.
"Are you real Ginny? I'm not hallucinating am I?" He reached up to touch her hair, bringing her close to him, their foreheads touching .
"Your so," Ginny paused her voice cracking, "thin."
Harry pointed to a gift basket full of chocolate frogs on the nightstand, "Don't worry Gin. Thanks to Ron's gift of sweets I'll be fat in no time." He stroked her face, wiping away the tear that had fallen.
"You need to eat more than Chocolate Frogs!" Ginny found herself laughing for the first time in days. Leave it to Ron, she thought.
Briefly he separated from her reaching into his nightstand, and brought out a worn wizard photo of Ginny that she recognized was from their honeymoon. "I thought about you everyday, every night."
Caressing the photo gingerly between his hands, "This was the only possession I had Gin. Your picture kept me alive. When I wanted to end it all, I kept thinking about getting back home to you."
All those sleepless nights she cried for him. The emptiness that had almost killed her, the feelings all came flooding back. Every memory she had safely hidden in her heart was now becoming unlocked. She just couldn't bring herself to tell him.
Draco had asked her once, " Do you still love him?"
"Yes, I always will." was Ginny's sincere reply. It was safe to love two men, one who was alive and one she thought was long buried.
Although he tried to hide it, she knew that Draco had always been jealous of Harry even in death. Ginny didn't want to comprehend the feelings that Draco would be feeling right now. For the moment she pushed those thoughts to the furthest reaches of her mind.
Ginny's attention turned again to the man sitting in front of her. She was angry that someone had nearly broken Harry, leaving him with bruises that marred his once beautiful skin. Furious that someone had deliberately kept him away from all who loved him. His sadness and fragility moved her, she wanted to take away his pain. Instinctively she put her arms around him as his lips found hers. Years of separation magically disappeared.
"Miss, um, Ginny," the nurse interrupted carrying a tray of healing potions followed by two healers. "You can send the rest of your family in after the tests."
Reluctantly she withdrew from his arms giving him a goodbye kiss. Confusion clouded her mind even more. She loved Draco immensely which made it all the more difficult when she realized how much it would hurt him to know that not only did she kiss Harry but that she still loved the boy who lived. She had once read that you couldn't love more than one person. Oh how wrong that truly was.
That morning Harry had become reacquainted with his adopted family and was delighted at the new additions. Ron had given him some pumpkin pasties much to the consternation of his wife. Hermione agreed with Ginny that he ought to have something healthy.
It escaped no ones' s attention that Harry was still in the dark about Ginny's marriage to Draco, especially Ron.
"What's the first thing you'd like to do now that you're back? Quidditch perhaps? Now that we actually have a chance to beat you." joked Fred
Harry took Ginny's hand, "I'd like to keep my promise to Ginny"
Ginny gulped, remembering the promise he gave her before his assumed death.
"We're going to start a family. Maybe bring another little Ginny and Harry into the world." Harry looked up at the redheaded woman with hope in his eyes.
Why didn't I tell him?! A right mess you have yourself in now, she told herself. Ginny felt like sinking into the floor. The room became eerily quiet. She received nervous glances from her mother and Hermione. A hardened glance from Ron didn't help matters.
Little James looked curiously at both his Aunt Ginny and his newly found Uncle Harry. Before he could utter a word, Hermione clamped it shut.
Harry's eyes wandered from Ginny to the rest of the Weasley's, his brow furrowed in confusion at the now silent family.
Hesitating a bit, she measured her words carefully, "Let's get to know each other again Harry. There's no rush in thinking about children right now." Ginny avoided looking at anyone else as she held Harry's hand and gave it a gentle squeeze.
"You're absolutely right Gin. I want to make up for all the time we lost and concentrate on you first and foremost," Harry managed a weak yet happy smile.
Ron took this opportunity to usher the family out of the room and begin the Ministry questioning. "We'll talk later," Ron hissed to Ginny as she left Harry's room .
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