Chapter 7: Wedding Bells

In the darkness of the car Harry held her hand, his thumb twisting her brand-new engagement ring across the face of her finger. Ginny sighed happily, her head turned to look at him. After a moment she said, "We need to tell my parents."

"Were you planning on going to see them tomorrow?"

"No, I have to be back at CHR Thursday. My vacation officially ends tomorrow."

He nodded. "That would make it difficult. Five hours down, five back would leave little time there."

"Mmm," she hummed her agreement. "It was the same last year. They didn't want me to even be there overnight and drive back New Year's Day because the traffic would be so bad."

They lapsed into a comfortable silence, holding hands whenever possible, until they arrived back inside Ginny's flat. Ginny puttered around the kitchen, preparing tea for them, whilst Harry hung up their outerwear. Then he joined her in the small kitchen, standing behind her and wrapping his arms around her waist.

"Mmm, you smell good," he whispered before pressing several kisses onto the side of her neck.

She tilted her head to one side to give him better access. As he continued his attentions she shivered in his arms, enjoying the feeling of his lips on her skin.

The tea kettle whistled, and with a sigh of regret Harry stepped back. She poured the hot beverage into two cups, and he carried his to the tea table in the drawing room, and Ginny trailed holding her own cup and a plate of her Mum's sugar biscuits. Settling on the sofa, Harry laid an arm around her shoulder and pulled her into his side. After a moment he broke the silence.

"What with getting married," a goofy grin appeared on Harry's face at the word, "we have a few things to decide."

"Such as?" Ginny was definitely interested in what Harry's thoughts were and whether they mirrored hers.

"Where to live. How would you feel about moving to Bristol?"

That was not one of the things she was pondering. Ginny pulled far enough away that she could look at him. "It would certainly make it easier to go see my family and eliminate the need for you to drive there and back for practices."

"And is that a 'yes' or a 'no'?"

"Yes, I reckon. I'll miss my job and the people I work with, but I can get another there."

"That may not be necessary for a while yet." He leaned forward to pluck a biscuit off the plate. She darted another look at him. "We don't know how soon we can get married, and you wouldn't want to have to commute until we do." he told her practically.

"True. Shall we call my folks tonight?"

"I defer to your preference," he told her.

"Well, before we call, perhaps we should decide a few things."

"Such as?"

"A date we'd like to shoot for. Who we'll have in the wedding party, how large we want the wedding to be. Colors."

"Sweetheart, I'll go along with whatever colors you want."

"Puce and purple?"

Harry stared at his fiancée. "Surely you jest. I don't even know what color puce is!"

"Just checking whether you truly mean you'll go along with the colors I want," Ginny told him with a cheeky grin. "By the way, puce is purple."

"Okay, then, no puce or purple. Or pink, at least not for the men."

"Blue? Green? Yellow? I can wear those colors pretty well without my hair clashing horribly."

Harry took a sip of his tea and set the cup back down. "Any of those. Maybe you can go with green for my eyes, for the ladies." He fluttered them outrageously, drawing laughter from her, "and red for the guys, for your hair. Or blue, for your eyes."

"Green and red, even though not on the same garments, is too … Christmassy. I'd really prefer one color for bridesmaids and groomsmen. So, again, colors."

"Can I think about it, and you do the same?"

She dipped her head in a short nod. "Shall we move to a date?"

Harry reckoned January or February were out of the question. "How about we elope?"

"And have Mum kill both of us? I'd like to live to enjoy our marriage for years to come." Ginny leaned forward slightly and push her shoes off with a sigh of relief. When she sat back, Harry drew her toward him, and she gladly cuddled into his side.

"Agreed. How about March?"

"I don't know if she'll go for it, and she's bound to ask if we have to get married, but we can float the idea past her," Ginny decided after thinking about it for a moment.

"Okay. If she gives us a definite 'no' we can revisit the question. Next decision."

"Hmm. Well, the number of attendants will depend on the size of the wedding so let's talk about that next."

"I won't need more than twenty or twenty-five invitations, and that includes the people in my crew. Neville will be my best man, by the way."

"Noted. My family is pretty large. Dad has three brothers, and all but one have multiple children, and Mum has two brothers, one of whom has a family. Then there are cousins in the Weasley family, great-aunts and uncles on both sides, and some close friends. We might be able to get by with a guest list of a hundred or so."

"Sounds good to me. So how many attendants then?"

"I think two but additional ushers."

"Shall I have some of your brothers be ushers?" Harry chuckled and pinched her side, "Just your favorites though."

She beamed at him. "That would be lovely. How about we make it a competition, we can get some bribery from the Weasley boys," Ginny said with a laugh. "Food? Do you have a preference?"

"It depends on the timing, surely."

"It will. Okay, we can table that, too."

Ginny lapsed into a thoughtful silence. She doubted Harry would want a say in the flowers and design for the invitations. She'd need to begin looking for her dress and choose her attendants' immediately. Flowers. Peonies? Would they be available then or prohibitively expensive? It was something they could talk about.

"Okay, let's get the call made," Ginny commented and picked up her cell phone, pressing the numbers to call her parents. The phone call went pretty much the way she expected: her Mum wanted to know if she was pregnant, couldn't understand why they wanted a small wedding, and had numerous other objections. Ginny looked at Harry, who mouthed, "Why don't we just do it ourselves?"

She put her hand over the speaker. "Do you know what that would entail?"

"No, but tell me what you want me to do, and I'll take care of it."

"You're sure? Once we start doing this we can't back out."

He nodded. "To get things the way we want them, yes."

"Okay, but you better be as good as your word." He nodded again, and Ginny interrupted her Mum. "It's okay, Mum. Harry and I will take care of everything."

Her Mum squawked at that, but Ginny stood firm. It turned out that Harry's money paved the way to get things done the way they wanted quickly. As soon as they ended the phone call with her parents, Harry revealed more of his background. His father had inherited shares in a medical company that one of his great-great-grandfathers started; it had been sold by Harry's grandfather in exchange for a great deal of money and some stock. Harry was very wealthy, so wealthy that he didn't have to work. He also made a decent amount of money in his singing career. He told her that she would not need to go back to work after the wedding and her move to Bristol. It was a novel thought, whether or not she worked was entirely dependent on what she wanted.

The only thing the money couldn't fix was the wedding date. They wanted 15th March at the church the Weasleys attended, which was totally unavailable. They ended up with a noon wedding on eighth March because Harry's latest acceptable date was the fifteenth; he was anxious for their wedding night and wasn't ashamed to let her know. Ginny just smiled, as she was like minded.

Ginny made calls to the different companies that provided wedding products and services. She paid for her own gown, which she found on a sale rack because the stores were getting gowns for spring weddings, as well as shoes and a small trousseau. When she found out how much peonies would cost, she switched to more economical white roses, even though Harry said they could afford the more expensive flowers. They planned their guest list which, in order to include everyone in the extended Weasley family and the closest of her parents' friends plus a few of Ginny's, came to one hundred thirty-two. She browsed different bakeries and came up with a design combining the best of what she saw, and it wasn't overly fussy nor odd looking. The bakery the Weasleys always used was contacted; during her lunch break she texted a sketch of what she wanted. The shop mailed a glossy back, and she phoned them to approve it and specify the flavor of cake they wanted.

Carter's Catering in Ottery sent them a brochure, and Ginny and Harry sat together at her kitchen table pouring over menus, keeping in mind that with a ten o'clock wedding they needed a brunch-type reception.

George drove Demelza to Manchester one weekend, and the two women shopped for and found her maid-of-honor dress in emerald green. Since George was with Demelza, Ginny dragged him into a tuxedo rental shop to get him fitted for a black tux; he, Fred, and Bill would be the ushers. Harry and Nev went on their own.

Invitations were ordered and received by the end of January, and she spent a good portion of a Saturday addressing them – and had cramping fingers to show for it. Harry offered to help, but Ginny declined, saying, "Your handwriting looks like chicken scratch, and believe me, Sweetheart, I know what chicken scratch looks like. The postal system wouldn't be able to decipher the addresses, but thank you anyway."

When she went to bed each night, her mind was awhirl with wedding details, and she could only hope they weren't forgetting an important element. Thinking about Harry, his loving arms around her, his arousing kisses, and his palpable love, calmed and grounded her. All her fears regarding him ever leaving her again had long since been put to rest.

They visited her family twice before the wedding, on weekends Harry had no concerts planned, leaving Manchester after Ginny's workday was over, and each time Ginny brought her Mum up to date on how the plans were coming. She turned down a bridal shower since Harry could afford to buy whatever they needed. She'd much rather spend a quiet evening with the family.

One Sunday between the two visits to Ottery they tooled down to Bristol so Ginny could see her new home. When she saw it, she was dumbfounded. Like The Burrow, it had multiple bedrooms and bathing rooms but on two rather than three floors; the floors were much more spacious than those in The Burrow. She couldn't believe Harry had moved into his two-bedroom flat from this spacious house, though he assured her that he didn't use many of the rooms in the house when he lived there alone.

Almost before either knew it, it was March eighth. Harry was standing impatiently in front of the altar, the minister on his right and Nev on his left. Ginny's attendants were standing at the other side of the altar, all waiting for his bride to appear. Harry's heart stopped when the music swelled and Ginny appeared on Arthur's arm at the back of the church. Smooth velvet hugging her curves, the modest neckline barely teasing her collarbones that begged for his lips on them. But it wasn't the dress that took his breath away – her smile, bright and loving, and all for him lighting the room took that honor. He thought she'd never reach the altar. And him.

Finally, they stood in front of the altar, and it was just Arthur between him and his bride. Arthur squeezed Harry's hand in a firm, friendly handshake, though Harry couldn't help but notice the slight tremble in the red-haired man's lip as he pulled away to lift Ginny's delicate veil. Lace trim tickled her shoulder blades and shimmered like a waterfall down her back, only just allowing a glimpse of the pearl buttons that ran along the sway of her spine.

Ginny's eyes had seen only the tall, raven-haired young man standing at the front of the church, and her lips instantly curved upward. The bouquet of white roses in her hand shook slightly. He was so good-looking that at times she still had a difficult time believing he loved her enough to spend the rest of his life with her. He seemed so solemn, hardly like her Harry. And then her father gave her hand to Harry, and his smile lit up his face.

What she remembered most about the ceremony afterward were Harry's sparkling emerald green eyes holding hers and that his voice had been loud and steady. Her emerald-and-diamond engagement ring was joined by a plain rose-gold wedding band that tucked beneath the emerald and diamonds. And then Harry and she exchanged their first kiss as a married couple, and it only left them hungry for more.

The Marauders played at their reception, and Harry and Ginny's first dance as newlyweds was, of course, to 'Stay.' Whilst they danced, Harry echoed the comment Ginny had heard many times, though none of the others meant as much to her as Harry's, "You're beautiful, Ginny. I've never seen you look so … radiant. When you came up the aisle, I couldn't believe you were really going to marry a slouch like me."

Ginny gazed at him with adoring eyes. "And I've often wondered why such a good looking, sexy man like you would want a 'Plain Jane' like me." She was smiling, but Harry could tell she was serious.

He pulled her a little closer and growled into her ear, "You've no idea yet how much I want you. You stir my most primitive emotions."

"It's too late to frighten me off, Potter," Ginny smirked up at him. "You're stuck with me now." And she gave him a cat-like growl.

Harry's eyebrows shot up in surprise, and then he threw back his head and laughed in delight, hugging her tighter, crushing her velvet gown, not that she noticed or cared. "I love you, Ginny Potter. How'd I ever get so lucky to have you fall for me? And then forgive me and love me still?"

His use of her new name sent a shiver of joy down her spine. "You were real, Harry. You let me see past the stage persona. I didn't have a choice, not really." She smiled, her eyes full of love for him.

Thumb running along Ginny's hand, Harry couldn't help but let his eyes catch on the sleeves that hugged her slim arms. "Sometimes I forget how tiny you are."

"Though she be but little, she is fierce," Ginny quoted, a teasing look in her eye despite the lofty expression on her lips.

"It's the sleeves – look at your wrists," Harry insisted, letting his warm touch slip up over her arms.

With a soft laugh Ginny reclaimed one of his hands and placed the other on her hip, setting them back to a respectable distance. "Harry, you can hardly start feeling the bride in the middle of our first dance."

"But I'm the groom," Harry pouted. A slight smile flitted across her lips as she shook her head 'no.' He groaned. "Is it time to leave yet?" The music was coming to a close, but he knew he was in no condition to walk off the dance floor. Raising an arm, he motioned for the Marauders to continue playing even though he knew Ginny was supposed to dance with her Dad now. Nev eyed him shrewdly when Mike, the lead guitarist, immediately led the band into another number and, guessing his best friend's dilemma, began to laugh.

By the time the second song finished, Harry had himself under control again and watched, feeling almost bereft, as Ginny was swept away by her father. Pouting mentally, he went back to their table and took a healthy swig of a Bloody Mary. As he watched Ginny dance by, waving the fingers of one hand at him, a sappy smile spread across his face. Then, realizing the next dance was his to escort Ginny's mother on the floor, he went looking for his new mother-in-law.

As soon as their 'obligatory' dances were over, Harry claimed his wife again, very happy to wrap her in his arms once more, and Ginny was just as happy to be there. When the music began, they were disappointed but not surprised that it was up tempo, as all four of the earlier songs were slow dances. They stayed on the dance floor for the three ensuing fast tunes, but when the first strains of another ballad filled the air, Ginny melted against her groom, knowing that the other dancers shielded them from her mother's notice. They swayed more than danced, and when Harry knew the song was coming to an end, he murmured, "How much longer until we can leave?"

Ginny would have teased him except she knew exactly what Harry meant. "We have some duties to take care of."

He nuzzled her hair, thankful that she had removed her tiara and veil. "We've already danced with your parents."

"Yes, but we have to cut the cake, you need to throw my garter, and I have to throw my bouquet."

"Can we not and say we did?" he asked hopefully, tightening his arms around her waist.

She huffed a laugh. 'It won't take that long, Luv. Plus, you do get to remove the garter." She pulled away even though the band was still playing. Catching his hand, she tugged him over to where her Mum sat talking to Ron's mother-in-law, Anita Granger. After explaining what they wanted, Mrs. Weasley rolled her eyes but acquiesced.

Harry had already prearranged a signal with his best man. Nev quickly made his way to the bandstand and motioned for the Marauders to take a short break. Borrowing a microphone, Nev told the guests, "It seems our newlyweds are anxious to leave us." Their guests emitted good-natured boos followed by laughter, and Nev joined in. "Exactly what I thought. How rude!" His audience laughed again. "Since we can't change their minds –," He peered over the small crowd, " – can we?"

Harry, standing behind his bride with his arms around her waist, shook his head most emphatically whilst Ginny laughed.

"Then," Nev continued, "we need to clear the dance floor, have Mrs. Potter come up here in front with her bouquet and the single ladies back there," he pointed and moved his arm horizontally, "we'll find out which of our bachelorettes is destined to be the next bride."

Ginny did as she was asked, waiting for the young ladies to assemble. Taking a quick look at the grouping, she turned her back and lobbed her roses straight to her friend Luna. Luna promptly twirled and waved the bouquet at her boyfriend, Rolf, who blanched.

Rolf just about fainted shortly afterward when Ginny's garter, thrown with perfect accuracy by Harry, hit him square in the chest and he caught it reflexively.

Standing by the cake table minutes later, her hands covering Harry's on the cake knife, Ginny gave her new husband a stern look. "If you squash the cake all over my face, you'll be sleeping on the couch tonight."

Harry wasn't sure if she was as serious as she looked and sounded, but he decided not to press his luck. "I'll follow your lead, my love."

She grinned. "Don't trust me, eh?" She pressed down on his hand, and the knife easily sliced through the bottom tier.

Molly Weasley finished cutting a piece of the cake, halved it, and gave a smaller piece each to her daughter and son-in-law. Ginny hefted the small square, waving it a bit before moving it quickly toward Harry's mouth. He shut his eyes, sure she was going to smash the icing all over his face. He was surprised but pleased when the confection lightly touched his upper lip and opened his eyes and mouth at the same time. Some of the frosting stuck to his upper lip as he chewed the cake. Before he could lick his lip, Ginny swooped in and with her lips parted covered his and sucked the icing from his upper lip, sucking that lip into her mouth, too. As their male guests hooted their approval, Ginny backed away and gave Harry, who stood there utterly stupefied, an audacious wink.

"Your turn, Harry," Ginny prompted him, her voice breathy.

Harry lifted his hand holding the cake square. "Ready?"

Ginny nodded, trust shining in her eyes. Harry pushed the piece slowly forward, and she opened her mouth for it. He gently slid it past her teeth. She chewed quickly and then licked her lips, her eyes on his. Harry's moan was so soft she was the only one who heard it.

There were a few groans and mutters about the 'poor show' the newlyweds put on, but Harry and Ginny, still wrapped up in each other, didn't hear them. Ginny's Mum approached them from behind and touched each on the shoulder, smiling when they startled.

"I think you can go change into your traveling outfit now, Ginny," Molly suggested. Ginny embraced her mother quickly.

"Need help, Luv?" Harry inquired expectantly.

Her hand caressed his cheek. "Later. You can help me all you want later."

Demelza, who'd stepped near them as they were cutting the cake, touched Ginny's arm. "I'll come with you, if you'd like."

"I would. There are a lot of little buttons that need to be done."

"Ginny," Harry said hoarsely, "we're just going straight to the hotel. Why don't you wait until we're there to change? That gown is so beautiful on you, and you won't have an opportunity to wear it again." The sooner Harry could get her out of the dress, the better – and he badly wanted to undo every one of those little buttons himself.

Ginny gave Harry a long look. She knew there was something else going on inside his mind. "Alright, Harry." She turned to her maid of honor. "Thank you anyway, Demelza. Just make sure Mum gets the train, tiara, and veil, yeah?"

Demelza nodded, a broad grin on her face. "I can do that."

Outside, the traditional gamut of guests throwing birdseed had to be run, and some of those seeds went down the bodice of Ginny's wedding gown and lodged in her and Harry's hair. Some stung when hitting flesh, but intent on making their getaway, neither paid attention to it. Harry helped her into the backseat of the limousine, tucking her skirt in with her, before sliding in next to her. As the driver set the auto into motion, the newlyweds briefly waved out the side window. Fred and George hooted loudly when in the back window they could see Harry and Ginny kissing heatedly.

Inside the limo, out of breath, they ended their kiss, and Harry gently laid his forehead against Ginny's. "It's a husband's duty to help his wife in any way he can. I'm more than happy to unbutton Every. Single. One. Of those teeny, tiny buttons."

Ginny fluttered her eyelashes flirtatiously. "You would, eh?"

"Well, you said I could help all I wanted later."

"I did," she agreed. Their lips met and held, barely coming up for breath the rest of the distance to the hotel.

Later, though his hands shook, Harry enjoyed setting each of the myriad little buttons free.

Their wedding night was everything either hoped for and more and was the precursor to two magical weeks in Greece. Their happily-ever-after was just beginning.


After settling into Harry's home and making it hers, too, Ginny decided to put in vegetable and flower gardens. Instead of pursuing a new job, she chose to do some volunteering, at a local school and one of the hospitals. She found even then it didn't take up enough of her time, so she started looking at hobbies and took up knitting. Her Mum was very happy to help her learn the art.

When they'd been married fourteen months, Ginny discovered she was pregnant with their first child. Harry was delighted as was she. Their baby, a son named James Sirius, was born February 10, 2007, Molly and Arthur's first grandson. Jamie had his father's coal black, messy hair and his mother's blue eyes. Ginny and their son traveled with Harry to his concerts, though they stayed back stage in Harry's dressing room. Jamie was just nine months old when Ginny discovered she was pregnant again. As soon as they found out, Harry told Neville, The Marauders, and his crew that when Ginny was seven months pregnant, he would retire. When he'd started touring, he had promised them at least five years, and he had kept his word. The Marauders and Harry's road crew were picked up by a newcomer to the music scene. Nev and Hannah seemed happy that Harry was getting out of the business as Hannah was three months pregnant at the time; Nev's degree was in accounting, and he had no problem finding a position with a firm in Bristol.

On August 20, 2008, Ginny delivered identical twin boys, Arthur George – nicknamed Artie – and Aiden Fred. The two boys had the Weasley red hair and their Daddy's green eyes.

Their fourth son, Joshua William, was born November 3, 2010, with Harry's black hair and green eyes.

Their fifth and final child was also a boy, Brian Patrick, a redhead with blue eyes like his Mummy, born March 15, 2012. Harry told Ginny that as an adolescent he had been afraid the Potter line would die out with him. To be the father of five children, five sons, was shocking to him.

Ginny was happy with her five sons; Harry would have liked to try one more time for a daughter, but due to medical reasons Ginny was never again able to conceive.

After Brian's birth Harry and Ginny found a house, a bit smaller than the Bristol home, in the Scottish Highlands with lots of land, much of it wooded. Ginny recreated her gardens there.

All of the Weasleys' children married and had children of their own; Charlie was the last to tie the knot. Bill and Fleur had three daughters and a son. Charlie and his wife Celine had a daughter and a son. Percy and Marianne had two daughters. George and Demelza were the parents of two sons and two daughters, as were Fred and Leanne. Ron and Hermione's offspring were a son and a daughter, making Arthur and Molly grandparents of twenty-three, a dozen grandsons and eleven granddaughters.

Neville and Hannah Longbottom became the parents of two sons and a daughter, with Melanie Alice born between her brothers, Frank Edward and Gifford Michael (the boys were named after their grandfathers). Though not related by blood, the Potter and Longbottom families remained close as ever. For himself, Harry was elated with every area of his life – most of which was filled by his beautiful wife, children, and a family larger than he could ever have dreamed.

AN:Many, many thanks to my wonderful Beta, Gryffindormischief, who contributed in innumerable ways to this chapter. Her suggestions were golden, and many of the words contained in this chapter were written by her. Gryffindormischief,' thank you' is a paltry expression in return for all the help you've given me on this story, but Thank You! Thank you, too, to Guest, who has reviewed each chapter and given me encouragement to continue.