A/N: This is completely different from the Fated Harry Potter. It bounced around in my head until I finally wrote it down. I warn you that it's a bit more dark than the other. However enjoy and as always I own nothing of the Harry Potter world.
No one was sure when Fleur's obsession with Fenrir Greyback had grown to such proportions. Two weeks before her and Bill's wedding found Fleur sneaking out of the Burrow in the middle of the night. Fleur had received word that Greyback and his pack were in the area. Fleur was determined to make him pay for what he had done to Bill.
Dawn found Bill reading the note Fleur had left on the table. It told him not to worry and that she'd be back by dinner. Of course Bill was worried. He suspected what she might be up to and had immediately placed a fire call to Remus Lupin at Headquarters only to be told by Nymphadora Tonks that Remus was out. She told Bill that Remus was making a latch ditch effort with some of the werewolves rumored to be in the area and she didn't expect him back until later that day.
So Bill waited. He had absolutely no idea where she could be and with out Remus' help he didn't know where to start. Bill sat in quite contemplation watching his youngest brother and Harry Potter scurry about doing who knew what.
By 2:00 Bill was trying not to become panicked. He still had had no word from Fleur or Remus. He was about to make another fire call when he heard a soft pop outside the kitchen door. Bill was up and out the door like a shot. Remus Lupin had just apparated into their back garden.
Once through the back door, Bill stopped short. Before him stood Remus looking pale and drawn and close to passing out. Remus had never really been the picture of health but his pallor on this occasion was heart stopping.
All Remus could do was stare at Bill. He couldn't force himself to speak. What he had seen in a field not five kilometers from there would stay with him forever.
Bill knew immediately something was wrong. "Where is she? Did you find her?" Bill demanded.
Remus' mouth moved but no words came out. All he could do was lower his head. He reached into his pocket and pulled out the engagement ring Bill had placed on Fleur's finger just over a year ago. Remus had removed the ring before summoning the Aurors and had made arrangements to have her body moved to St. Mungo's for the time being. He didn't want Bill to have to see his fiancé in that field, barely recognizable.
When Remus was finally able to speak he moved swiftly to stand beside the younger man. His voice was rough and emotion filled, "Bill, I'm so sorry. There was nothing to be done by the time I got there. The pack split up after she killed Greyback so I'm not exactly sure what really happened."
Remus pressed the ring into Bill's hand, "I had her moved to St. Mungo's. They will help you make the arrangements."
Bill nodded curtly. He couldn't believe what Remus was telling him. He didn't want to believe what Remus was telling him. Quickly it all became too much. Bill looked wildly around before taking off at a sprint out of the back garden. Part of him believed if he ran far enough and fast enough he could change what had happened.
Remus watched the younger man go. He could understand, somewhat what Bill was going through. Remus had lost many that he loved during this war. He also recognized that Bill's loss was different. It took Remus a long time to come to terms with Nymphadora and their relationship but now that he had, he didn't know what he would do if he lost her.
Remus entered the kitchen where Molly Weasley was already working on dinner. He asked her to gather the rest of the family so he could tell everyone at once. Upon hearing the news that her soon to be daughter-in-law was dead, Molly sent Charlie and Ron out looking for Bill.
Everyone was in shock. It was almost midnight when Charlie returned with a very soused Bill. Charlie had found him down in the village pub sitting alone in a corner with several empty bottles of alcohol around him. Once out in the street Charlie performed a small sobering charm on Bill so he would stop falling down.
They arrived back at the Burrow to a full kitchen. Everyone, including the twins and Percy had come home at the news of Fleur's demise. Bill looked around the kitchen and in his inebriated state started yelling at those assembled, "You never liked her any way."
Before he could say something he would later regret, Charlie muscled Bill up the stairs and into his bedroom. Their mother was right behind them with a hangover potion and a cup of her special tea. Bill tried to refuse both however, Charlie and his superior size convinced him otherwise.
Bill's days fell into a routine. He slept until early afternoon then would sneak out of the house to find a pub near by. Then around two in the morning Charlie or Ron would finally catch up to him and drag his inebriated arse home.
In fact on the third night of his drinking binge, Bill was so drunk he was only marginally aware that Ron and Hermione had snuck to Hogwarts. He was completely unaware that they had returned to Hogwarts that summer night for Dumbledore to perform a bonding ceremony. Since a family member was needed to add to the magic, Ginny had gone along as Ron's representative and Harry as Hermione's since her parents had been killed several months prior.
Had Bill been sober enough he would have understood that the bonding ceremony, in the Wizarding world, was as good as being married. There was some antiquated law still on the books from when most witches and wizards could not afford the marriage license or the ministry official to perform the ceremony.
He saw Hermione dressed in a simple white cotton summer dress and Ron dressed in new dress pants and a crisp white shirt but it never registered with him just what it was they were on about. He was completely unawares when Ginny and Harry returned a few hours later to fill his mum in on the ceremony. And he completely missed hearing that Ron and Hermione were spending the night in a room above the Three Broomsticks.
Had he been sober he could have helped Ginny and Harry move Harry's things out of Ron's room and into Percy's old room. Had he been sober he could have helped them and his mum redecorate Ron's room for the newlyweds.
Harry and Ginny helped Mrs. Weasley give Ron's room a thorough cleaning before they began to redecorate. Mrs. Weasley had produced a couple of gallons of soft blue-grey paint. Harry looked around for the brushes and finding none asked where they were. Ginny and Mrs. Weasley chuckled at Harry before Ginny answered, "Harry just use your wand. Here I'll show you."
Harry liked painting better this way. In no time they had the walls covered in the soft blue-grey color. They moved the old camp bed beside Ron's twin bed and transfigured them into one queen size bed. Mrs. Weasley placed an enlarging charm on Ron's wardrobe so that the inside was much larger to accommodate Hermione's things as well. They took Ron's old desk and chair and transfigured them into a night table and love seat.
At close to two in the morning when they finished the room, Mrs. Weasley shooed Harry and Ginny back down stairs and to bed. They had protested saying there was more they wanted to do but Mrs. Weasley was firm. Finally they relented with the promise they could go shopping in the village the next morning as long as Charlie was available to go with them.
Ginny and Harry sat on the landing step outside Ginny's bedroom talking quietly. "It'll be a bit weird you know."
"What will be weird Harry?"
"Sleeping at the Burrow but not in Ron's room. It's just weird to me," Harry answered.
Ginny reached out and patted his arm, "I think you'll be okay Harry. But if you need, I've got a teddy bear Ron gave me when I was four or five you can sleep with."
Harry rolled his eyes at her saucy tone, "I don't think I need a bear, thanks any way Ginny."
They sat quietly for a few more moments, lost in their own thoughts. Harry was the first to break the silence, "Are you disappointed?" he muttered barley audible.
Ginny looked at him questioningly, "Disappointed? In what?"
"That we…that I didn't ask you…tonight…to bond," Harry's voice was anguished and he couldn't look at Ginny afraid of her answer.
Ginny blinked rapidly before taking Harry's hand in hers and forcing him to look at her with her other hand, "Of course I'm not disappointed, Harry. I think I may understand you better than you realize. I know that I want to spend the rest of my life with you and you with me. But I also know you couldn't stomach the thought of leaving behind a widow. We will bond or have a ceremony, whichever you choose, when the time is right for us.
"I know you worry about the outcome of this war but I'm not. I know you will win and then we can be together. Then we can start our lives together. When you've defeated Tom then you'll come ask me."
Harry let out a breath he had not realized he'd been holding, "Thank you Ginny, it means a lot to me that you understand. And I do want to spend the rest of my life with you. However, I don't think I'll ask you when I've defeated Tom."
Harry reached into the pocket of his jeans and withdrew a small black velvet box. With some trepidation he turned to Ginny, "I got this out of my vault a few weeks ago when I went with Remus to receive the rest of my inheritance. He told me it was the ring my dad bought for my mum." Harry opened the box and nestled inside was a round diamond on a thick band flanked by two smaller emeralds.
Ginny was stunned into silence. She couldn't believe she was sitting on a step with Harry Potter and he was presenting her with a ring.
Harry mistook her silence and began to speak rapidly, "I mean if you don't like it you can pick out something you do like. Or if you're not ready to call it an engagement ring then you can put it on your right hand and call it a promise. Or if you just don't want it…I'll understand. Being with me seems to have built-in hazards. I can't promise I'll come out of all this alive but I can promise I'll try my hardest."
Ginny placed a silencing finger on his lips, "Oh Harry…of course I'll marry you. I thought that was what we were sitting her talking about. And I love the ring but it was your mum's. Are you sure you want to give it up? Give it to me?"
Harry couldn't help the grin that split his face, "Of course I'm sure. When we get married, it would have been yours anyway."
Neither had heard Mrs. Weasley come down the stairs for a late night cup of tea until they heard her say, "I thought I sent the two of you…" Mrs. Weasley's voice trailed off as she caught sight of the ring between the two of them. Her mouth worked furiously with out any sound coming out. Finally she managed to say, "Well it took you long enough," before brushing past them and into the kitchen.
Harry blushed furiously before saying, "I guess we should get on to bed. We have a shopping trip tomorrow." Harry stood and offered a hand to Ginny. He pulled her up to stand beside him and glanced down toward the kitchen. Seeing that Mrs. Weasley was no where in the immediate vicinity, Harry leaned over and kissed Ginny passionately but quickly.
He released Ginny and stepped back saying, "See you in the morning." Harry turned and made his way to Percy's room whistling tonelessly.