Later that morning, when Harry awoke, he decided to put on a pair of heavy Muggle jeans and a thin, short-sleeved shirt, and borrowed Ron’s Cleensweep for some morning flying. He walked down to the rusty old shed, looking for the broom. While he was looking, he wondered why the Weasley’s, or him, for that matter, did not get an Order of Merlin yet. Each family member deserved one, including Fred. At least Ron should.
After finally finding a broom that wasn’t as beat up he walked outside and flew around a bit. He hadn’t flown in a year and it felt good to be in the sky again. The last two times really weren’t that pleasant. The last time, he was in a giant motorcycle that was nothing compared to the giant man riding it. That time he lost his broomstick, the Firebolt. And Hedwig…
Harry shook his head and started flying as fast as the broom can go, as if trying to fly away from those thoughts. It was helping; Harry soon felt completely relaxed, something that hasn’t happened to him in a long, long time.
As he was flying, he didn’t notice a girl with long, fiery hair, watching him from the stands, broom in hand. She smiled as she watched him flying in circles, flying down at breakneck speeds, only to pull up at the last second. He got even closer to the ground than Krum ever could, she thought absently.
She knew that at the moment, he didn’t want to be bothered, after killing (technically) the most powerful and most evil wizard ever, and she could barely respect that. He hasn’t said anything to her since he asked her to leave the Room of Requirement, and he doesn’t show any signs of wanting to talk to her. The occupants of the Burrow have been very gloomy since the battle. Fred, Remus, and Tonks have given their lives in that battle.
Remus and Tonks left a will, stating that Harry is Teddy Lupin’s official Godfather, and if they receive an Order of Merlin, It would go to the Weasley family if they didn’t get one. If they did, then their money would go to anyone in need of it, particularly orphanages. They knew it was a big chance that they both died before Teddy could turn seventeen, and knew that he wouldn’t be sent to an orphanage when his Godfather himself, was an orphan. But they also knew that after Harry defeated Voldemort (they had no doubt in their mind that Harry would kill him eventually), he would have to start rebuilding his life, not immediately take in a kid. Until then, Andromeda Tonks was in charge of taking care of Teddy. Andromeda was still very shook up by the loss of family members in that war, but she still would take care of Teddy, and was immensely happy that Teddy was not involved in this war. She was also glad that Teddy does not have any bad generic traits from his father, but inherited her Dora’s Metamorphmagus.
When Ron helped George clean the shop, they found a will left by Fred, stating that if he dies in the battle against Voldemort, (whose name he actually wrote) he hopes that he at least gets an Order of Merlin. He asks that if anyone wants to replace him in the Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes business, He wants that person to be either a family member or a trusted Hogwarts friend, like Lee Jordan.
He also states that if his ears are intact, he would gladly give George his ear. ‘It’s not like I’m using it or anything! And I’m pretty sure it will be a perfect match.’ George was still reluctant about the ear, but at the end of the will, Fred added a PS: ‘If George doesn’t take the ear, I’ll ask Peeves to give him hell!’ the surgery was performed the next day.
As Ginny kept watching Harry, she thought about sixth year, and the perks of being The Chosen One’s girlfriend. When they were gone all year, she was asked out numerous times. When it was rumored that Harry Potter was dead, she did not believe it; that would be all over the news to scare people even more. She was asked out even more often. After remembering the fact that Harry broke up with her last year, she started dating Jonathan Turner, a Gryffindor in her year, during October, in secret of course. She grew to have feelings for him, but she still planned on getting Harry back, she kept telling herself. In April, a few weeks before the battle, she broke up with Jon. He knew why, and told her that if Harry thought that it wasn’t working out, he’d be waiting.
Ginny decided that it was time to get back together with Harry, whether he was ready or not. She mounted her Nimbus broom and soared up to Harry’s height. She blocked Harry’s path, and he stopped instantly, a little agitated that she stopped him like that while he was clearing his mind. He also didn’t want to get together with Ginny yet. It’s only been a week. They still needed more time away from each other. At the moment, he wasn’t sure if he wanted to be with her for a long while. He realized that he didn’t really miss her when they lived in the same house. He decided not to bring that up. He said stiffly, “Hey Ginny.”
“I want to get back together with you.” It was straight and to the point.
“No, not yet,” was also to the point, and Harry dropped from the sky, leaned forward, and started speeding off again. Ginny decides to try again, so she flies along Harry’s side.
“Why not?” She asked irritably.
“I don’t know why. I just…need more time.”
“Time. Is. Up!” Said Ginny, getting angrier by the second. “How can you do this to me, leave your girlfriend for bloody year—”
“I broke up with you last—”
“Don’t interrupt me, Potter! I realized that and I did date someone last year.”
“You broke up with me last year, remember?” Ginny yelled hot-headedly.
“Yeah, but…” Then Harry thought about it. He didn’t know if he was gonna live through the Horcrux hunt, and with all the rumors of him being dead, he could understand why she would move on. It hurt him a little on the inside, but as long as she was happy, he was alright with it. He then starts wondering why he wasn’t jealous. “Okay.”
“I said ‘okay’. We broke up. It’s understandable that you start dating. So, who’s the lucky guy?”
Ginny was speechless. Her original plan was to date Jon to make Harry jealous, to make him want to never leave her again. She didn’t think Harry was going to be okay with it, so she didn’t have a back-up plan. If Harry’s happy for her dating someone else, then that isn’t good.
After a moment, she stuttered “I-it’s Jon…Jonathan Turner.”
“Hmm, never heard of him. And you just asked to go with me, while dating him? Or did you break up with him?”
Harry just thought about what he said. How can he be casually talking about Ginny’s boyfriend when he wanted to be with her? Or did he? He’s been mooning over her all year, wanting her to be back in his arms as soon as possible. But, as he thought of it, he’s been thinking about her less and less through the year. And as he thought about it, why didn’t he talk to her the moment he came back. The only time he talked to her was to get out of the Room of Requirement so he could destroy that tiara. He should’ve at least comforted her when everyone was in the Great Hall either celebrating or mourning over the battle. Well, she did have a lot of help being comforted, surrounded by Weasley’s.
“I broke up with him.” said Ginny, interrupting Harry’s thoughts. “I thought that when you came back you’d have an engagement ring.” She said, flying closer to him and checking his pockets. Harry blanched. From the look on her face, she wasn’t joking.
“Are you nutters? We only dated for 2 bloody weeks, and you’re talking about getting married?”
“What? It would be more romantic.” Replied Ginny, as if she hadn’t said anything wrong. “Think about it, the hero leaves his damsel for an entire year, and then returns to slay the beast, and he immediately proposes to her in front of everyone, they get married and they’ll live happily ever after.”
Harry could not believe what he was hearing.
“Okay, first of all, I want to wait at least a year till I even think of getting married—”
“No, you’re not! I won’t wait that long!”
“I know you don’t want to wait that long, but you’re not the one that’s going to give you a bloody ring, are you?”
Harry dropped from the sky and this time, he didn’t lean forward. When he was a meter from the ground, he slipped his leg over the broom and threw himself off. He landed perfectly on the golden grass, broom in hand, and he quickly walked off. Ginny flew down and flew beside him, a tear in her eye, “Harry…d-do you…do you love me?”
Harry stopped in his tracks. Did he love her? He liked her very much, but did he love her? The monster in his chest was being unusually quiet; usually he could almost hear it roaring in his chest whenever she was near. It surely would’ve popped out of his chest if it heard those words…but it wasn’t there. Harry started thinking back to when he first had feelings for her. He first thought of his feelings for her when he, Ron and Hermione caught her snogging Dean, but when did he first think about Ginny that way?
“Ginny…you know I like you very much…I’d do anything for you…but I’m not sure if I…you know…love you. I mean how can you fall in love in two weeks?”
Harry looked up to see a teary-eyed Ginny. He again felt very uncomfortable around crying girls. She spoke in a soft, but bitter voice. “I’ve always loved you…since I was ten—”
“That’s not true,” Harry said, his voice soft and comforting, “you did not love me since you were ten. You loved the Boy-Who-Lived, just like all other ten-year-old girls. Tell me, Ginny, when did you get to start knowing me, and not the Savior of the Wizarding World?”
It was an incredibly tough question for Ginny. When did she start falling in love with the real Harry? “I…I-I don’t know. I don’t know when I switched…every time I thought of you, I always thought, ‘hero’ and ‘savior’ and ‘the boy who saved my life’. I never really thought there was a difference.”
This put Harry in a new light. “You never switched, did you? You never loved me. You only thought of me as a friend, possibly a brother. You loved my exploits. That’s why you wanted me to propose to you then, huh? To get celebrity status?” Harry’s voice wasn’t bitter, but amazingly still comforting. This would have hurt him much more in the past, but now, it seemed like it was nothing, really.
“Sweet Merlin…did I? I think…I think I have only thought of you as a friend. I just combined it with my love for your status. I wanted to share that status with you. I guess I was just…blind. Are you mad at me?”
“Actually…no.” Harry said. “I’m pretty irked that you only saw ‘The Chosen One’, but I’m glad it was unconsciously, and thought you knew me, so it was an honest mistake, right?”
“Y-yes, I g-guess it was.” Ginny replied. “So, -” she wipes off the tears with the sleeves of her shirt, “are we breaking up…for real?” Harry had that same thought in his mind, and after some thinking, he said, “Well, can you still be one of my best friends?” “You bet!” she replied, this time with a bit of a smile. “Well, Ginny, I guess we are breaking up.” She landed on the now green grass, dismounted the broom and hugged Harry for all he was worth. “Friends are allowed to hug friends, right?”
“Yeah, they are.” Harry said as he hugged her back. “Just make it a little less awkward next time, and no kiss on the cheek.”
“How can Hermione get to kiss you on the cheek, but I can’t?”
“It would be awkward.”
“How would it be awkward with me and not her?”
“She’s not my ex-girlfriend.”
“Well, she broke up with Ron, so she’s gonna kiss you on the cheek a lot more.” She said teasingly. Harry’s face felt hot, but would say it was the sun; it was just now coming up.
Harry pulled back and asked her, “Don’t you have a boyfriend to dial?” Ginny looked up at him for a second, and Harry almost thought that she could read his mind, until he realized what he said. “Oh, I meant ‘owl’. I forgot that you don’t have phones.”
“Ohhh. Well, see you later, Harry.” She kissed him on the cheek and walks away. “It’s not awkward to me.” She says to herself, loud enough for Harry to hear. He smirked and went to the shed to put back the broom. He then made his way back into the house.