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One Time

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One time, just once. Just after he left. You knew you should’ve gone with him; you knew you should’ve stayed with Harry. Your head was spinning. That’s your excuse.

You were sad and he was sad, and you were both sad about Ron leaving, in different ways, and you were both heart-broken with worry about Ginny at Hogwarts, in different ways, and somehow it made sense to crawl into Harry’s bed and kiss him and whisper that everything was going to be okay because you needed him to believe it. Because if he didn’t believe it, then what was the point of any of it?

Somewhere in Australia your parents were appreciating the sunshine, a couple vaguely wistful but not overly so about not having children to share the moment with.

When you kissed Harry everything made sense, for a moment. The heavy cream envelope arriving for you just as you were preparing for a prestigious Muggle school, already pondering which GCSE options were best and in agreement with the prospectus that an all-girls environment was the most productive. The increasing struggle on your parents’ faces as they tried so hard to be supportive of what was going on at this strange school they could never quite understand – and the genuine grins of delight when the prefect badge arrived. The ongoing internal struggle – Muggle or magic, Muggle or magic?

When you kissed Harry you knew your place was in the magical world, and that was that. Even if it was just that one night, that one time.

He kissed you back. Like he cared. He did, you think. You both cared. Not in any way that should suggest a lifelong commitment, but it meant something, to you both. He needed you, too. You thrived on it, actually.

You’ve never told Ron. You know Harry hasn’t either, even though you know there are things the boys discuss that you’re not privy to, even now. But he would tell you. Harry would tell you.

You like still having this slivery, silvery thread to the Boy Who Lived before he became The Man Who Survived. Yes. You do. You like that you knew his body in full before Ginny ever did, even as you love Ginny as a sister. You like that you know, even now, the face Harry Potter makes when he comes; how he bites down on his lower lip beforehand, how his mouth widens in awe just at the right moment.

Just one time. You’ve never asked for more, never wanted it. This is enough.

It has to be.