The Sugar Quill
Author: Miss Gypsy (Professors' Bookshelf)  Story: Cry  Chapter: Default
The distribution of this story is for personal use only. Any other form of distribution is prohibited without the consent of the author.

Cry

Cry

 

Disclaimer:  I own nothing.

 

A/N:  Hmmm, yes, a songfic.  And I really rather loathe country music, generally speaking.  Ironic, eh?  But something about this song reminded me of Ginny – thus this fic.  Enjoy, country music or no country music.

 

Thank you, Felina Black, for your excellent suggestions.  Some very good lines in here are yours.

 

 

~~~***~~~

 

If I had just one tear running down your cheek,
Maybe I could cope, maybe I'd get some sleep,
If I had just one moment at your expense,
Maybe all my misery would be well spent.

 

Ginny Weasley sat alone in her living room.  Fury pounded through her, mingling with sorrow and grief, as she stared at the headline of the Daily Prophet.

 

The Boy Who Lived breathes his last breath in St. Mungo’s

 

Harry was gone, her Harry, her sweet, perfect, wonderful Harry.

 

Who had lied to her.

 

~~~***~~~

 

“Ginny, where’s Harry?”

 

“What?”  Ginny started and whirled, not prepared for someone to enter her flat unannounced.  “What are you talking about?”

 

Her favorite brother stood in the doorway, looking extraordinarily harassed.  “They can’t find him, Ginny, everyone is panicking…”

 

“Ron, calm down.  Tell me everything.”

 

“He was supposed to come to dinner tonight, at Hermione’s place.”

 

“Gee, thanks for inviting me,” Ginny threw in irritably.

 

“That’s not the point!”  Ron yelled, glaring at her.  “The point is that he’s gone – his flat is empty – and Hermione doesn’t know where he is and neither does Dumbledore.”

 

Ginny couldn’t help but smile, despite the panic rising in her chest.  Hermione and Dumbledore were the ones that Ron trusted most.  In his eyes, if they did not know something, nobody did. 

 

“Well, he’s not here,” said Ginny, gesturing around her new flat.  Having just graduated from Hogwarts, she’d moved into a cozy little neighborhood near the Burrow.  She loved her large family, but she needed some breathing room.  However, her own flat was the last thing on her mind as she started to run through a mental list of all the places Harry could be.

 

“Gin, they have him.  I can feel it,” said Ron, and Ginny’s eyes welled with tears.

 

“Don’t say that, Ron,” she said shakily.  “The Order knows what’s going on – we’re winning this war!  They can’t have him, they just can’t.”

 

But they did.

~~~***~~~

 

The Boy Who Lived breathes his last breath in St. Mungo’s

 

As soon as she read that horrible headline, Ginny had packed her bags for the Burrow.  It had only been two years since she had graduated and moved from the family home, but she had changed a great deal in the days that had passed since she had left.  The world was a different place since her happy childhood.  While it had been painful enough to wait for Voldemort to return, those few years between his rein of terror were minor cuts compared to the way things were now.  There was no comparison for the terror that every witch and wizard lived and breathed at every moment of their lives – a deep, buried fear of being alive.  Or being dead.  Or being caught.  Or simply just existing.

 

It had been two long years since Harry’s disappearance that night.  The look of horror on Ron’s face was permanently etched into Ginny’s memory.  Nothing had been the same since.  Although they’d found and saved Harry, many things had happened in the course of those twenty-four months that had left the wizarding world desperately trying to pick up the pieces.

 

She didn’t cry as she changed into black robes and gathered her belongings.  She tucked Persephone, her lovely gray owl, into her cage without a word.  Persephone hooted at her, and she only smiled sadly. 

 

Apperating into Diagon Alley, to first pick up a bouquet of roses to give to her parents as a remembrance of the boy who had become a son to them, Ginny saw a group of witches standing in the Alley.  They were crowded around a copy of the Prophet, and they were all crying.

 

“So sad,” murmured one of them, looking to be around the age of twenty.  “Oh, he was such a wonderful person.”

 

“Aye,” agreed a much older witch, her cheeks also damp with tears.  “The wizarding world has suffered a great loss today… a great loss indeed.”

 

Ginny glared at them as she passed.  They had no idea.  No idea.  What had they lost?  A name, that was all.  They knew Harry because he’d stopped Voldemort.  If you had asked them to describe him, they would have given the description that any witch or wizard who hadn’t been living under a rock for almost two decades would have given. 

 

A hero… handsome… intelligent… always getting into trouble… noble…with that legendary lightning bolt scar.

 

But the only people, Ginny thought, who had a real reason to cry were the ones who really knew Harry Potter.  The ones who knew him for his kindness and generosity, his pleasure at the simple things in life, and most of all, his love.  Although love was not something Harry had been familiar with in his life, the Weasleys and Grangers had given it to him unconditionally, Ginny most of all.

 

So if anyone should be crying, she thought furiously, it should be her, not these witches who had never even met him.  And yet, she wasn’t crying.  Why wasn’t she crying?  She felt like she had done something wrong, like she did not care as much as she should.

 

She made her way past the weeping witches without another backward glance.

 

Could you cry a little,

Lie just a little,

Pretend that you’re feeling a little more pain.

I gave, now I’m wanting,

Something in return,

So cry just a little for me.

 

 

~~~***~~~

 

“Hermione, please,” Ron had begged, standing with his girlfriend in the parlour of the Burrow.  “Please listen to me.  Harry’s an Auror – “

 

“In training!  He is NOT supposed to be-“

 

“Hermione!  Shut up a second and listen to me!  This is Harry Potter we’re talking about.  He’s not some mad lunatic.  He’s got a good head on his shoulders and he’s an amazing wizard.  Of course they’re going to want to use him in the war.”

 

But Ron, as was his unfortunate habit, had chosen the wrong words.  Hermione’s eyes welled with tears but her face remained twisted with fury.  “EXACTLY!  They are going to USE him!  Has he not had enough tragedy in his life?  And what about us?  What about Ginny?”

 

At these words, Ginny had stepped further into the shadows, sinking down to kneel on the floor as she listened in on their bitter argument.

 

“Ginny?”

 

“Yes, Ginny, the person that Harry loves more than any-“

 

“Hermione, every soldier, every warrior, every Order member, every strategist, they all have someone like Ginny!  We can’t back down because we will lose someone we love!”

 

Hermione buried her face in her hands.  “If they took you away, Ron, I don’t know what I would do.  And I’m so scared.”

 

At these words, the angry expression on Ron’s face was wiped away as quickly as if he’d been slapped.  He stepped forward, wrapping his arms around Hermione, and let her sob into his chest.  Shhh,” he whispered, “Harry will be fine.  He will be fine.”

 

~~~***~~~

 

After Ginny had bought flowers in Diagon Alley, she Apparated home.  It took all the strength she possessed to enter the Burrow.  She walked in the door and found Hermione, curled up on the couch with her nose in a book.  Ginny cleared her throat, and Hermione looked up in alarm.  Ginny saw that there were bags under her red, swollen eyes, and her lips were chapped.  Her shoulders drooped with a sort of defeat Ginny had never seen before, and when she spoke, her voice trembled.

 

“Oh, Ginny.” 

 

Ginny had promised herself that she would be strong for the rest of her family.  She couldn’t give in to what she was feeling – because that only made it real.

 

Her eyes traveled around the room, willing Harry to pop out from behind the bookcase, smiling, his green eyes dancing.  She could just imagine him laughing – teasing – saying that it was all a joke. 

 

“I’ve been here all along, Gin.  Right here.”

 

She would scoff and turn on her heel, and he would stop smiling and run after her, apologizing himself into the next dimension and promising that he would never play such a cruel joke again.  She would at first refuse to forgive him, but his sparkling eyes and messy black hair would draw her in, and she would throw her arms around his neck and tell him that it was all fine now – that she forgave him.

 

“Ginny?”  Hermione’s voice brought her tumbling back into the present.

 

This was no sick-minded prank.  Harry Potter was dead – he’d moved on – and Ginny Weasley would never see him, or hug him, or talk and laugh with him ever again.

 

And for the first time since his death, Ginny sank to her knees, buried her face in her hands, and cried.

 

~~~***~~~

 

Fifteen-year-old Ginny Weasley sat in the library, poring over books and looking for information for Snape’s essay on Love Potions.  She ran a hand through her fiery hair, distractedly pushing it out of her eyes, and scribbled note after note with her quill.

 

Snape’s given you a monster to slay, eh?”

 

Ginny jumped about a mile in her seat then whirled to see who had spoken to her.  Harry Potter stood before her, his arms crossed and that secretive smile of his played across his lips – the one that always made Ginny wonder what sort of private joke he was sharing with himself. 

 

“Why, hello, Mr. Potter,” she said cordially, smiling at him.  “Would you care to have a seat?”  She moved some of the books off of the nearest chair and Harry sat. 

 

“Thank you, Miss Weasley,” he said, mocking her in a playful tone, “You are so terribly kind.”

 

Ginny smiled, and bent back over her work.  Her quill scratched in the silence that followed, and then Harry spoke again.

 

“You are extraordinarily pretty, if you don’t mind me telling you.”

 

Ginny’s head snapped up.  Harry’s face had lost all traces of that secretive smile.  He stared at her seriously.

 

“What?” she asked, dumbfounded.

 

“You heard me.”

 

The pair stared at each other for a moment.  Harry’s expression was one of steely satisfaction in his own ability to blurt out something he’d been keeping in (without making it horribly awkward or embarrassing), and Ginny’s was one of total shock.

 

Ginny couldn’t think of anything to say.  She had a lot of things she wanted to ask, like why had he waited until she had entirely given up on him to fall for her, or why someone who was as wonderful of a person as he was had chosen to say such a thing to someone as average as Ginevra Weasley. 

 

Harry still stared at her.  Ginny realized that she was most definitely going to be the one who had to speak first.  “Harry… I… well, you know about Dean, don’t you?”

 

Harry slammed his hands down from the desk onto his knees and looked away in a sort of disappointed manner.  “Yeah, I did… it’s just… damn it, Ginny, look, I’m sorry.”

 

Ginny knew that it was her job to keep the moment light.  Harry was not one to go around declaring his love for people, and though he had done a good job at making it all look so casual, she knew that right now, he was feeling like an absolute idiot.

 

“There’s no reason to be sorry about anything, Harry,” she said brightly.  “Now, about this essay…”

 

And so he stayed there with her, helping her compose an excellent essay, for the next hour and a half.  Ginny knew that there were other things he could be doing, and she felt terrible.  And she was scared.

 

Scared that now that she had a chance, she was trapped.  There was Dean, who loved her very much, and Cho, who seemed to be permanently on-and-off with Harry, and there was Ron, who wouldn’t take to anything between Harry and Ginny well at all, and Hermione, who would worry herself sick if she knew about it all… and there was the war.

 

How could she allow herself to fall in love with Harry Potter in the middle of what was soon to be the darkest war the wizarding world had seen in centuries?

 

Long after he had headed to dinner, Ginny returned to the Common Room carrying an essay that would knock the knickers off of even Professor Snape.  She found Dean sitting before the fire, staring into it distractedly.

 

When he saw Ginny, his face split into a wide grin.  “Gin!  Hey!”  Dean stood to embrace her like he always did.

 

As she stood there hugging Dean, Ginny froze.  Harry appeared on the staircase that led up to the boys’ dormitories.  He was carrying a single orange marigold.

 

Ginny’s favorite flower.

 

Ginny stepped away from Dean as though she’d been shocked and stared at Harry.  For a moment they stood across the room from one another, staring, and then Ginny turned on her heel and ran from the room.

 

Harry followed her, like she knew he would.  She collapsed in the corridor and he knelt beside her as she sat on the cold stone floor.

 

“Ginny, look, I’m sorry,” he said softly.  “It was stupid, we can just let it go, and it never happened, alright?”

 

Ginny looked into Harry’s green eyes, swirling in confusion and disappointment, and shook her head.  “How can you say that, Harry?” 

 

“I just said something stupid – its not like we were going out, it’s just-“

 

“No, but you said something… did that mean nothing?”

 

Harry looked at her, drew a great breath, and said heavily, “You’re right, Ginny.  It meant nothing.”  He stood and so did she, and they stared at each other for a second before he shrugged awkwardly and said, “Friends?”

 

Ginny smiled, tears stinging her eyes.  Poor Harry.  This had all been so hard for him.  If it weren’t for Dean…

 

You’d still be over him, she told herself firmly.  Nothing will happen here.

 

Harry smiled back and turned.  “See you in the Common Room,” he said rather shyly.  She only nodded.

 

As he rounded the corner, the smile dropped off her face and the tears, unrestrained, rolled down her cheeks.  She headed for the library, for she needed a place to get away.

 

If your love could be caged, honey, I would hold the key.

And conceal it underneath the pile of lies you handed me.

And you’d hunt and those lies,

They’d be all you’d ever find.

And that’d be all you’d have to know,

For me to be fine.

 

~~~***~~~

 

Fred and George were the last to arrive at the Burrow.  Ginny could not remember how long they waited for everyone to get there.  Maybe it had been twenty minutes.  Or maybe it had been six hours.

 

Ginny could not tell the difference.

 

She could only remember the twins entering the parlour and staring at her.  She stared right back, for they were in simple black robes, not the usual flashing or spiraling patterns they preferred.

 

Fred spoke first.  “Hey, little sister,” he said, his voice catching.  Then he hesitated, and Ginny offered him a shaking smile.

 

“Where’s the other pea?”  Tears welled in Fred’s eyes as he spoke, and George clapped a hand on his shoulder, his eyes also wet.  Ginny bit down on a sob as she watched this.  She had never seen her brothers so solemn before, and it broke her heart.

 

When Ginny and Harry had finally gotten together, they became inseparable.  Fred had started calling them two peas in a pod, because where one went, the other followed.  George adopted the saying as well, but it was Fred who would laugh and tease her about it every time he saw his little sister alone. 

 

“Hey, little sister, where’s the other pea?”

 

There was something about hearing it now that calmed Ginny.  She didn’t know exactly what it was, but it made her feel like Harry really wasn’t as out of reach as she thought he might be. 

 

Mrs. Weasley entered the parlour from the kitchen, and saw the twins standing quietly before her.  “Oh, Fred – George – “ she broke off sobbing as they hugged her at the same time. 

 

“Hullo, Mum,” said George tiredly. 

 

Ron scooted over on the couch he and Ginny were sharing to make room for the twins, and Ginny made a soft, tearful noise.  Ron looked at his little sister, let out a very boyish sob, and pulled her into a hug.  Ginny sobbed into his shoulder while the rest of the family talked quietly, or just cried like Ginny.

 

Hermione edged her way over to the couch and Ron put his other arm around her, clinging to his girlfriend and his sister as if they were his last lifeline.

 

“I c-can’t believe it,” Ginny sobbed.  “How c-could he?  H-how could he?” 

 

“Oh, Ginny,” said Percy softly from the chair across the room.  She looked at her brother’s tired face as she sat there with Ron.  “He didn’t do it on purpose.  The Dark Lord possesses powers that we can only imagine–“

 

“The Dark Lord didn’t kill Harry Potter!” Ginny screamed suddenly, sitting up and moving away from Ron.  “Harry Potter died alone in a hospital room, like some common idiot who had a run-in with a Lethifold!  And now the world is mocking him!”

 

Percy frowned at his sister.  “Nobody is mocking Harry, Ginny.  Now please, quiet down.  You’ve had a very long day-“

 

“SHUT UP, PERCY!”  Ginny bellowed, her throat raw and scratchy from so much crying and yelling.  “You don’t even have any idea!”

 

She jumped from the couch and ran sobbing into her childhood bedroom, left untouched by her parents in the last two years.

 

She collapsed on the bed and buried her face in the pillows, crying harder than she’d ever cried in her life.  But it really didn’t matter how many tears fell, because no amount of outward sorrow and hysteria could ever convey what she was feeling inside.  It  could not have possibly hurt more if Voldemort himself had found her at that very moment, held her under the Cruciatus Curse until she was close to madness, then ripped her limb from limb.  She felt like her very soul was being torn away from her – her very marrow of existence shrinking away as she fell into an overwhelming sea of grief.

 

And you’d cry a little,

Die just a little,

And baby, I would feel just a little less pain.

I gave now I’m wanting,

Something in return,

So cry just a little for me.

 

~~~***~~~

 

She stepped up to the desk in St. Mungo’s, her eyes shining and her face drawn, making her look much older than only eighteen. 

 

“I’m here to see Harry Potter,” she said tiredly.

 

The secretary looked at her irritably.  “Yes, you and half the other witches your age.  He’s quite the heartthrob, I suppose, even when he is wound up in bandages.”  She flipped through her magazine without another look at Ginny.

 

“Please, ma’am.  My name is Ginny Weasley, and I’m…”  Ginny looked around anxiously before quietly whispering to the secretary, “I’m Harry Potter’s girlfriend.”

 

The secretary raised her eyebrows in disbelief and smacked her chewing gum loudly.  Then she tapped her own throat with her wand and said, “Zorgain, are you in Potter’s ward at the moment?”

 

A voice answered back through the tip of her wand, a male voice that sounded to be about twenty, with an American accent.  “Yes, I am.  Why?”

 

“Is he awake and… thinking clearly?”

 

“Yup,” said the Healer.  “He’s doing quite well, for someone who’s been through what he faced.”

 

“Does he know who Ginny Weasley is?”

 

Lemme ask him and we’ll find out.”  There was a moment’s pause, where they could hear faint voices.  Then the Healer spoke back to the secretary, a mild note of surprise in his voice.  “Yes, he says that she is his girlfriend.  Send her down.”

So Ginny was led to Harry’s unusually hidden room, and when she walked through the doorway, she let out a shaking gasp of surprise.

 

Harry looked horrible.  He was wound up almost head-to-toe with bandages, resembling somewhat of a mummy.  What she could see of his face was pallid and drawn, his green eyes bright and hauntingly shining against his white skin.  His black hair was longer than it usually was, as though he hadn’t had the chance to cut it in a while.  But he was smiling.

 

“Hey, Gin,” he said roughly.

 

“Harry-“ she replied, staring at him.  “What… what happened to you?”

 

Harry shrugged casually.  “Nothing that will be too terribly harmful in the end.”

 

Ginny snorted.  “Do not lie to me, Harry.”

 

“I’m not lying.”

 

She put her hands on her hips.  “Tell me right now.  Look me in the eye and tell me that you aren’t lying when you say that you’ll be fine in the end.”

 

Harry said nothing.

 

“I see,” said Ginny softly.

 

And then she walked over to his bedside and embraced him.  He hugged her back the best he could and then kissed her on the cheek.  “I missed you so much, Ginny,” he said shakily, and she realized he was near tears.

 

They chatted idly for a few moments, then the door to the ward opened with a soft creak.

 

“Miss Weasley, we’re going to have to ask you to leave.  Mr. Potter, you know the rules.  Ten minutes, and ten minutes only.”  Ginny did not recognize the young man, but his voice told her that it was the Healer called Zorgain. 

 

“Alright, sir,” she said softly.  “Goodbye, Harry.”  Something told her that she would never see him again.

 

Harry smiled at her and kissed her softly.  “Tell them that when I get home, I’ll tell them everything.”

 

Ginny laughed softly and embraced him one last time.

 

She never saw him again.

 

Give it up, baby,

I hear your goodbye,

Nothing’s gonna save me,

I can see it in your eyes,

Some kind of heartache,

Darling, give it a try,

I don’t want pity,

I just want what is mine.

 

~~~***~~~

 

A week went by (or maybe it was only a day – Ginny couldn’t really tell the difference anymore) and the memorial was held.  Those that Harry had known and loved best attended the private burial.  Hermione had squeezed Ginny’s hand supportively as the coffin was lowered beneath the bright green grass. 

 

Ginny stepped forward and laid a single marigold on the shining wood lid.  “You know why,” she whispered softly.  “For everything that you did for me – for everything you were.  I love you, Harry.”

 

And she stepped back from the hole in the ground.   She stepped back from the guilt she’d held, as if she should have been able to prevent this.  But there was one feeling she could not abandon at the gravesite.

 

To the world, a wonderful, legendary, super-human hero had just died.  They shed tears of sorrow, held memorials, and wrote books and songs and poems in his memory.  They talked about all the wonderful things he’d done for the wizarding world and named their children after him.

 

And Ginny?  She stood and watched this all unnoticed.  Nobody knew that she was the one who was grieving the hardest.  She’d run out of tears and time to cry.  Life returned to normal, but normal became that dull numbness weighting the back of her mind. 

 

But to her, the one person for whom she would have given her soul was gone.  Gone, and he would never return.  No matter how many bitter tears she cried, no matter how many times she looked up hopefully when the doorbell rang.  Harry Potter was at rest forever. 

 

And for the rest of time, the entire world would be crying.

 

Yeah, could you cry just a little?

Lie just a little,

Pretend like you’re feeling a little more pain,

I gave now I’m wanting,

Something in return,

So cry just a little… for me.

 

~~~***~~~

//
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