Disclaimer- I own nothing of Harry Potter, just borrowing the characters.
A/N- I've read lots of 'George is suicidal' fics, most of them long and about Hermione helping George through his depression gradually and being there for him no matter what. She and the Weasleys walk on eggshells around him and he finally comes out of it enough to see that he can live without Fred. I decided to take this another way for a quick little oneshot.
Hermione slid out of bed and slid into her bathrobe before moving to the bathroom. When she returned the redhead lying in her bed was still asleep. He was lying face down and his head was to one side, the side facing her walk-in closet that led to the bathroom. Or at least she thought he was asleep though his question indicated otherwise, "So am I special or do you shag all the boys who call you in the middle of the night wanting to off themselves?"
She stopped picking out the clothes she would wear that day and looked to see him with an eye open. "Implying that the girl you just shagged will shag anyone is not the way to thank her for putting up with your self-destructive attitude. Or for keeping said attitude to herself and not telling your family about it."
He blushed, "Sorry. Thank you for not telling anyone."
Hermione sat down on the bed and ran a hand through his hair, "I won't be able to do this again George."
"I'm leaving England."
"You're…you're leaving me? Why? Who?"
"There's an amazing healer in Brazil and it's a great opportunity for me and my future. You'll have to tell someone else, George. You'll have to cope some other way."
George had awoke feeling content, safe, and happy. Now he felt cold, nauseated, and alone. He slid out the other side of the bed and hurriedly put his clothes on, purposefully not looking at the woman who had become his rock, "Everyone leaves," he mumbled. "Everyone leaves and I'm left alone and everyone expects me to just move on and I can't move on I can't because I don't know why I'm stuck I'm always stuck I'm never going to not be stuck and no one cares. No one cares about me they just care about Fred and Fred is all anyone sees when they see me and I'm not Fred and I'm never going to be Fred because we weren't the same person but no one can see that even Hermione doesn't see that." He lifted his head and his eyes were cold and his voice was both cold and hollow, "I thought you were different. You're not. You don't actually care about me. Well you don't have to worry. Go off to Brazil and have a brilliant life. Forget about poor broken George with his one ear, dead twin, and shattered life. You don't have to go that far to lose me you know. I'll make sure you never have to see me again."
With that George vanished and Hermione instantly went into panic mode. George had, just last night, wanted to drown himself. Before that he'd tried pills, before that he'd bought a muggle gun but fortunately hadn't worked out how to use it. Hermione had destroyed the gun, cleaned his apartment of pills and potions, but last night she hadn't been able to take away the threat. And George's attempts were always different like he was trying to find the perfect death. She threw on some clothes hurriedly and Apparated to the bridge. He wasn't there. Fred's grave, where she'd found him with the pills, was also vacant. She conjured some flowers for Fred, "I never thought I'd see George go over the deep end Fred. And I think I pushed him over it. Please, if you're out there, please don't let him die before I can get there." Tears welled up in her eyes. If she was honest with herself, she liked George. She liked him alot. That was part of the reason she was leaving. She couldn't be with a man who was as dark as George had become and she feared she only increased those feelings by becoming a vice for his loneliness. Love wasn't on the menu when it was with a man she knew wanted to crawl into a hole and die.
Her next stop was Hogsmeade where he'd been with the gun. Then Hogwarts where the swamp shrine remained. The plaque near where Fred had died also didn't show any signs of George being there. At each memorial to the twins she left flowers; hoping that the only twin she was memorializing was Fred.
Hermione didn't go to the Burrow. She was certain he wouldn't go there; that left WWW and the flat. She popped into the shop and it was empty, bleak, and she felt her heart drop when she saw the sign in the window. George was selling the shop. His threat hadn't been a threat. It was a promise. She hurried up the stairs and into the flat to hear silence, then a groan. She entered the bathroom to see George laying there, a cut vertically over his left wrist traveling up a good portion of his forearm. "NO!" She was by his side instantly, healing the cut and getting a glass of water from the sink and forcing him to drink it before opening her bag and pouring blood replenishing potions down his throat. Hermione was aware, vaguely, of tears falling as she tended to him. Blood covered the tile floor and her but her only focus was on George, "George please don't do this. Please! You can't die on me you selfish bastard I love you!"
His eyes fluttered open before he winced in pain. His arm hurt. He vaguely recalled finally deciding to just end it all and yet…wasn't that the smell of Hermione? He could hear her mumbling and strained to pick out the words 'love you' 'George' 'can't leave me' and 'stupid selfish bastard' through her sobs and he could feel the tears dripping onto his face and body. He saw the blood on the floor. Potions was a skill by trade so he knew he'd been more close to death than ever before. If Hermione had been just 30 seconds later he would be dead.
And with that thought George felt a turn of his stomach and he realized that he didn't want to die. He wanted to live and he wanted to live with the sobbing witch who was clinging onto him as she was. "Hermione?" His voice cracked and his throat felt dry, "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to scare you. I…"
He was silenced as she kissed him. It was certainly not one of their better ones but lying in a pool of his own blood he could get over that. "George! You're alive! Oh thank you Fred thank you," she gazed upward, "thank you," she whispered before pulling George up, "we have to get you to bed George."
She was about to clean up the bathroom with a flick of her wand when he stopped her, "I want to clean it by hand. I think it'll help," he said.
They stripped out of their clothes and Hermione put him to bed, curling up against him, "I almost lost you," she whispered.
"I'm sorry Hermione," he repeated. "I won't do it again. I promise. I want to be a good boyfriend to the witch I love. Can't do that if I'm dead or you're mad at me."
She smiled softly and kissed him, "Good. And I'm sorry too. I shouldn't have sprung that news on you like I did."
"So we both made mistakes and we both fell in love while not wanting to," George sighed, "what do we do now?"
"You're selling the shop," she whispered, "why are you doing that George?"
"I can't run it alone. Everyone else has other career paths. I don't want to get in the way of that."
"What about Ron? He's just a second string keeper for the Cannons."
"Ron can't manage a team let alone a store," he sighed. "So I'm selling."
Hermione glanced up at him, "Don't sell it George. You have four brothers and one sister who will be producing nieces and nephews for you to lure to the Dark Side of the Force and train as padawan pranksters; no doubt spending a large portion of that learning pranking their parents. And I would love to see Ron's children prank him."
George never looked to the future but he could almost imagine Ron getting pranked by his own children. Ron was a great target for pranks. He was dense and trusting which made for a wonderful combination for George and Fred over the years. "Reckon we ought to find Ron a smart witch then because otherwise those kids might be dumb as rocks."
Hermione nodded her head and took his left arm to look at it, "That scar will remain. I won't be able to heal it. You cut too deep."
He gazed at her, "Shouldn't you be packing for Brazil?"
"I'm not going," she answered.
His eyes widened, "Hermione you can't stay here for me! Don't give up on your dreams!"
"I'm not George," she lifted her head to look him in the eye, "I was leaving because of you. Because I was scared that you'd break my heart by killing yourself and I couldn't be here for that." Tears were forming and George gently wiped them away, "But if you really mean you won't ever try that again and that you love me I…I intend to stay."
"I do mean it. And I promise you I won't ever try again," George smiled and kissed her gently, "I'm tired."
"Blood replenishing potion will do that to you. Let's get some rest. I'm emotionally exhausted."
He nodded and snuggled against her before falling asleep. Hermione stayed awake a bit longer listening to his beating heart to remind herself he was alive, he was safe, he was…he was going to be okay. It had been her mantra each time she stopped him, each time they had sex, each time she lay beside him listening to his heartbeat. But this time…this time she actually had hope. George had never before said he didn't want to die. This time he had. George was going to be okay. This time she found herself believing it. She closed her eyes and held onto him closely.
When she woke several hours later George wasn't in bed. She sat up to see him cleaning the bathroom with a bucket and sponge. "George…"
"I need to do this Hermione. I don't want to die anymore. But I need to do this. I need to clean up the blood by hand."
Hermione went to his closet nude to find some of his clothes to wear, transfiguring some of his boxers into underwear for her, and walked to the kitchen to see what he had to eat. She really didn't want to see the blood. George needed to clean it but she couldn't handle seeing how close she was to losing him that time. Just as she was cracking the eggs she felt the tears coming. George pulled her into a hug, "George…I was so scared. I thought…"
"I know Hermione. And I'm sorry. I guess I never thought about how I was affecting you with these attempts." He squeezed tightly, "Can you forgive me?"
She just nodded and snuggled close to him. Hermione took a deep breath, "I love you George Weasley. Despite what you've made me witness."
"I love you too," he held her close, "and I will spend the rest of my life making this up to you."
"You're going to have to tell your parents George."
That didn't appeal to him in the least. But he nodded. "I will, I promise."
"And that's how your mum and Uncle Harry and Uncle Ron stopped Voldemort," George said, closing the book and looking at his children. Twins. Hermione had glared at him when they'd learned that they were having twins. He'd tried to look apologetic but found it hard. "Any questions?"
"So Mum got that scar on her left shoulder fighting Bellatrix Lestrange when part of the hall exploded and hit her and we know about why you're missing your ear," George did not like where his son was going with this, "how did you get the scar on your left arm?"
He was attempting to come up with a lie when Hermione's voice entered the room, "Tell them the truth, George. They're old enough."
George looked at their twins. "I caused that scar," he said. "I tried to kill myself and very nearly succeeded. Your mum saved my life."
Hermione, who had been leaning against the doorway, walked into the room and joined her boys on the bed, pulling George into a hug as the memories came back, "Your dad was really upset about Uncle Fred's death and he attempted suicide a few times. That time was the last. It was also the closest I ever came to losing him," she closed her eyes and inhaled his scent.
George took over, "I cleaned up the blood in the bathroom by hand and held your mum as she broke down thinking about how close she was to losing me. And then we cleaned up the flat and the store and your mum redecorated the place. We've lived here ever since." Molly Weasley had not been happy that George and Hermione lived in Diagon Alley with their children in the flat above the joke shop. However the couple, after they got married, had added a third floor to the building so that they would have more room when they decided to start a family.
It had been three years that they were together before they got married. Hermione refused to even discuss marriage until George got counseling and the counselor affirmed that he was in fact getting married for the right reasons (love) and not the wrong ones (fear, loneliness, neediness).
Knowing that he owed her more than he could ever repay her for George accepted each of her conditions easily. And he never complained; although his mother did enough complaining for everyone. Molly was not pleased that they were living together 'out of wedlock' and had frequently told the pair that they were setting bad examples. However, the other Weasleys stood up to her on George's behalf and she kept quiet about her displeasure after a month or two.
Once George had finished therapy and the counselor had told Hermione that he was doing very well George had bought a ring and proposed to Hermione immediately. She said yes and to Molly's horror they eloped just six months later. Then George had told her about his desires to still live above the store and Hermione, wonder of wonders, agreed. They had had to redo the flat and build a second floor so that the master bedroom was large enough for them to live in together but that was surprisingly easy.
George looked at the twins, "It's time for bed now. Let's get you two tucked in."
They kissed their mother good night and hugged their father before going up to their bedrooms. The twins had their own bedrooms. They'd turned Fred's old bedroom into a library and the other rooms upstairs included a play room. Hermione and George had decided that their children would go to muggle school like their mother until it was time for Hogwarts. George still remembered when the healer had told them that they were going to have twins. It was one of the best days of his life. Hermione had refused to name them after him and Fred, not even as middle names, so he'd looked up mythical tricksters and they'd gone with Loki and Puck. Hermione attributed her agreement with this to George's eyes and her heightened libido during pregnancy as well as George suggesting they use a name from her favorite Shakespearean play.
After about five minutes Hermione got out of bed, kissed George, and went up to make sure that their two ten year olds were actually in bed. When she returned George smiled at her, "I'm surprised they asked."
"I'm not," she said, "they've asked me before and I've always told them they weren't old enough. Tomorrow they turn eleven," she sighed and changed into her nightgown, "George are we old?"
"Not for magical beings," he answered. "For muggles we're about middle aged."
She smiled at his answer before sliding into bed. He removed his t-shirt and joined her, his arms wrapping around her, "I love you George Weasley."
"I love you Hermione Granger-Weasley."
"Yet another reason your mum was mad at us," she smiled.
"I remember when we announced that the twins' last names would be hyphenated like yours Mum throwing a fit. And I remember telling her I'd happily let you name them Granger instead of Granger-Weasley."
Hermione smiled. She remembered that too. Molly had been so shocked her mouth had moved with no sound coming out for several minutes. When she'd found her voice George had reminded his mother once again that he and Hermione were the parents and it was their decision, not hers. Molly had been most displeased with that but when George told her it was a promise to give the kids the last name of Granger she'd backed off. You had to know how to deal with Molly Weasley and it was something George was good at. She leaned in and kissed her husband, "Our boys are asleep, we're alone and have silencing charms, what say we revel in our love again?"
George grinned and kissed her as she rolled on top of him. Every day since that day Hermione had found him in the bathroom he thanked all the deities he'd ever heard of and Fred (since Hermione had told him her plea to Fred to keep George alive until she was there to help him) for not letting him die. Every day Hermione reminded him that not only was there still life left to live but that it was a wicked good time living it. He groaned as she took him in her mouth and lifted his head to watch her, his eyes half-lidded as he did. Life was pretty great being married to Hermione. He intended to fight to live even on his death bed when he was old and gray. She was worth the fight.