For Those Who Yearn
The wind rifles through his hair as he escapes through the
window, tucking the broomstick between his knees. The night is unforgiving. Its
harsh cold shakes his bones and freezes the air as he inhales. Pulling the hood
of his cloak around himself tighter, he casts the Disillusionment Charm wordlessly
as he flies away from The Burrow and is sucked into the darkness. Don’t look back, the reasonable side of
him whispers through the air, shivers clamber along the grooves of his spine,
grasp his ribcage and he can’t help it.
As if forced by the Imperius curse, his head whips around
almost like he’s been pulled by a cord of wind to the window he shouldn’t have
left open, the pale expanse of her back tinted blue, shaded by the sky. He can almost
see the bitter air creeping towards her, slipping along the lines of her body,
across her breast, her neck. The broomstick slows his speed and turns sideways;
he knows that if he wakes her up, if her apple-burned cheeks flash in his
direction, his stomach will plummet to earth and he won’t be able to keep
travelling in the right direction.
You have to go,
the voice says to him again, more quietly but with a heightened sense of
urgency he can’t ignore. Tightening his hold on the broomstick, he pulls his
wand out of the pocket of his jeans and points it at the window. “Propinquis.” The word winds out of his
The shutters bang shut quickly, bouncing off the sill on
impact and settling slowly with an audibly painful creak. He swallows his
stomach, pushing it back down into his body, and disappears.
“Why are you here?” the question falls between them like a
brick. She winces. Don’t leave. She
doesn’t want things to be like this now. He doesn’t deserve cruelty, not from
“I don’t know,” he says, standing awkwardly by her window,
his Firebolt grasped tightly, knuckles blue with effort. “I’m sorry…” Voice trailing
off, he shakes his head and turns to leave. The shutters creak under the weight
of his hand and a draft immediately sneaks between the cracks and flutters
around her hair.
“I didn’t mean it like that.” She tries to keep the
desperation from creeping into her voice. Her breath comes in bursts; she
strides over to the window sill purposefully and hesitates.
“I wanted to see you,” he breathes, taking a hand away from
the shutters and turning to face her. “I needed…”
She covers his mouth with hers, silencing him. She knows
what he needs.
She lies on her naked stomach, elbow tucked under her
cheeks, fired like she’s been standing by a furnace. Her other arm holds him,
fingers dawdling up and down the slopes of his cheekbone and cradling the curve
of his jaw in her fingertips. He grasps her hand tightly and brings it to his
lips, kissing each languidly.
“What was it like, being a Muggle?” she asks in a whisper,
afraid that questions about the present will intrude upon the world they’ve
constructed in the past hour and morph it into the world that kept them apart.
He has only come back to her for a brief moment in time: when the sun turns the
horizon purple he won’t be lying next to her any more.
“I wasn’t a very good one,” he replies with a little smile
and a small chuckle. “I never got to go to the cinema or the shopping centres
but I did go to the zoo once.”
“What’s the zoo?” She’s never heard of one before.
With a smile, he reaches a hand behind her neck, trailing
fingers along the base of her spine. “I’ll take you sometime.” He rolls onto
his back, pulling her close so she sprawls across his chest. His fingers run through
her hair and she can’t help hugging his warm chest tightly, thinking in the
back of her head that just maybe if she holds tight enough, he’ll forgot that
when he leaves the room the weight of the world will clamber back onto his
shoulders, that he’ll forget he is supposed to play the hero and stay. That
He leans down and kisses her neck, feeling like his heart is
broken open, leaking out of his body. He wants to tell her everything that’s
pouring out, that when he sniffed Amortentia she was hidden inside the fumes,
that he thinks of her always, that he wishes he could spend every lunch hour by
the lake as they used too.
“My mum had red hair,” he whispers into her ear.
“Hagrid showed me a picture once.” She reaches for his hand,
entwining their fingers slowly. “When I was in fourth year and still had that
silly crush on you. He said, ‘The Potter men are suckers for redheads, Ginny,
don’t worry. He’ll figure it out soon enough.’” Her voice rumbles in a low,
gravelling register; she giggles at her own impression.
“I love you.” He doesn’t know how the words escape from his
lips, but they shoot out. The silence sudden silence befalling them causes him
to shift uncomfortably.
“I know,” she replies after a beat and sits up, allowing the
blanket to slip away. She places two hands on his bare shoulder and kisses his
collarbone lightly. “I love you.”
His lips find the inside of her wrist and he pulls her to
him, cradling her body against his own. “If I could, I would never leave this
“I will always be here.”
She wakes up alone.
This was coming and she knew it, yet the realization hits
her at an agonizingly slow pace. Lonely hands trail over the empty sheets next
to her as empty eyes stray to the place against her bureau where the broomstick
leaned. She buries her face in the pillow, blinking against the burning behind
her eyelids and trickling wetness on her cheeks.
All she can do now is wonder what he is doing, why
Dumbledore sent Harry and Hermione and Ron on a mission so important, so
dangerous, that is has kept them away for so many months. Once again, she is
kept out of it. She doesn’t want to be: she wants to be on the road with him,
fighting next to him. Yet somehow, she knows where she doesn’t belong.
After last night, she thinks it’s possible that if she left
him now—if she fought or died or got lost or taken, if she lost her memory or
was driven insane—he might just fall apart with her.
“I love you.”
The words hit her like ice. Even though he has the weight of
the world on his shoulders, she has the weight of Harry Potter on hers and
right now, it feels like he’s just a little bit heavier.
A/N I did invent the spell Propinquis, which is a freestyle on one of the Latin words for
I would like to especially thank Gwynne for the careful
edits. Her attention to my pronoun troubles is unparalleled. She is an amazing
beta. She does great work.
Oh the cheek on me!
But seriously, thanks so much!