disclaimer: I own nothing - unless you count my husband, two kids, dog and a mortgage!
"What Dreams Are Made Of"
Harry's eyes widened as he watched the girl lying next to him get up from her beach towel and reach for her suntan lotion.
"I think it's time I turn over" she said with a shy smile. "I can't reach my back. Can you do it for me?"
Harry looked down at curvaceous red-head lying there in her string bikini and he audibly gulped hard.
"Uh, sure," he stammered, and reached over and took the lotion from her.
"Make sure to get under my strap. Well, here wait a minute I don't want tan lines," she said as she untied the back of her top and lay down again.
Bloody Hell, he thought to himself
Harry squirted some of the suntan lotion onto his palms and rubbed them together. Just as he was slowly rubbing the lotion onto the redhead's back, he heard a faraway noise.
BEEP, BEEP, BEEP, BEEP….
What is that, he thought to himself as he continued to cover the redheads back with lotion. His hands ever so slightly going lower and lower with each circular motion.
BEEP, BEEP, BEEP, BEEP…..
Harry's eyes flew open and he reached over and shut off his alarm.
He was not at the beach with the amazing redhead he was at Privet drive in his dismal bedroom.
It was the same dream that he had been having all summer. He had been having "those types" of dreams about Ginny for quite some time now. But ever since Dumbledore's funeral, when he had told her they shouldn't see each other any more, the dreams had been getting a bit more vivid.
It was starting to disturb him. He was trying to protect her. He knew that they would target her to use against him. He couldn't allow that to happen. He would much rather suffer without her than condemn her to such a dismal fate.
Harry looked up and took a deep breath. He knew the best way to clear his head. Since he was still not able to practice magic out of Hogwarts for another month and he was tired of studying. He did what he had been doing for the past few weeks.
He crept down stairs and went outside to the front walk. He then stretched a bit, put in his ear-buds to his MP3 player then went out the lane at a slow jog.
He had discovered on his way home this past year that he could exchange wizard money for pounds at the Leaky Cauldron. Since then he had made a few improvements in his life. Nothing too obvious, he didn't want Uncle Vernon to start asking questions.
Knowing his uncle, he would want to start charging him room and board and then try to collect on what he hadn't paid the previous 16 years he had lived there.
Harry had bought a laptop that he kept hidden as well as his MP3 player and a cell phone. He had also finally bought some new Muggle clothing that he felt a bit more comfortable in. He was sick to death of looking like a vagrant in Dudley's oversized hand me downs.
Amazingly the Dursley's hadn't even noticed. Harry wasn't surprised, they mostly ignored him anyway. He had found the laptop was good for analyzing strategies and had also been emailing Hermione. Together they had cataloged quite a bit of information. Hermione was even working on a way to charm the laptops batteries so that they could use them at the Burrow. The cell phone was a great way to keep in touch with her without having the Dursley's breathing down his neck and the MP3 player was just for pure distraction.
As he ran he rehashed in his mind what now seemed like a mantra to him. He was "Harry Potter" for goodness sakes; "The Boy Who Lived" he didn't have time to obsess about his own love life. He should be studying his brains out looking for a way to defeat Voldemort.
Unfortunately, that was not the case. He was after all a 16 year old boy. He couldn't help but notice girls, they were everywhere! He saw them looking at him and even flirting with him. Every single one of them reminded him of what he told himself he could not have; Ginny.
His thoughts continued along this line as he ran his now regular 2k circuit.
Harry was training hard to prepare himself for what he knew lay ahead. He wanted to be in top physical condition for the upcoming battle. He also knew that the search for the Harcrux would be arduous. Between the jogging and working with Dudley's long discarded dumbbells he was starting to feel a bit more comfortable in his own body.
He didn't want to look like a professional wrestler or anything. But he was certainly glad to be shedding the gawky teenage boy look. For a while he felt like a Great Dane puppy whose hands and feet were a bit too big. Wouldn't that be just great, during his battle with a Death Eater he would lose just by tripping over his own feet!
After his run Harry took a shower and headed back to his room. He was hoping Hedwig had returned from her night of hunting and would be ready to take his post for him. He wanted to see if Ron knew when he would be able to get him out of here.
When he got back to his room not only was Hedwig there but Pig was buzzing around his ceiling.
"Come here you little Git," said Harry as he tried to get Pig to slow down a bit. Finally she relinquished the letter for an owl treat.
Get packing mate! We will be there tomorrow after 6:00 pm. Let the Dursley's know we will be using the floo. If possible, Dad wants to avoid any bouts with Mr. Dursley, what a Git! Mr. Dursley – not Dad. We will head back to the Burrow until Bill and Fleur's wedding then it's off to Grimmauld Place till school begins and we can begin our search.
Harry immediately started packing his trunk. This was his last summer at the Dursley's. He would no longer be able to call this place home. The protection of family would no longer be able to shield him. He left out only the things he would need for the next 24 hours and set out to find Uncle Vernon and Aunt Petunia. He was sure they would be ecstatic to be rid of him, though he was also sure that Uncle Vernon was going to freak knowing how he was going to be picked up.
As expected Uncle Vernon showed his true colors. "Can't you just take a bus or something? Why do they have to invade my home! Go ruin someone else's fireplace," he shouted. "Oh, whatever boy, just go get ready and be done with it," he finished and stomped out of the room. Aunt Petunia just sat there tight lipped looking petrified that her immaculately clean living room would be ruined again, though underneath Harry could sense that she was also a bit remorseful. He would never fully understand what really went on between her and Dumbledore. Begrudgely she had fulfilled her obligation, she was now free.
O O O
The next morning, Harry's started his day with a cold shower then went for his run. His now standard dream had gotten a bit more interesting and Harry had awoken feeling as guilty as hell.
At 6:00 pm Harry was ready and waiting for his friends in the living room. He was sitting reading a book; a non-wizard one. He didn't feel like fighting with his uncle. At last Ron's head appeared in the fireplace.
"Harry, you ready for us mate?" asked Ron.
"Sure thing Ron," said Harry "give me a minute to tell my Aunt and Uncle."
"I heard, I heard" shouted Uncle Vernon as he ushered Aunt Petunia to stand behind him "just get this bloody mess over with boy!"
Ron turned and started to speak to the others in the room where he was "They said to hurry up and get the bloody mess over with, so I guess that means they're ready. Ow! Mum, I just repeated what he said, don't blame me."
Suddenly with a POP! Mr. Weasley appeared at the base of the fireplace, then Mrs. Weasley then finally Ron, each of them dressed in their best Muggle attire.
Mrs. Weasley automatically reached over and hugged Harry. "Nice to see you again dear." Then suddenly she added, "you feel as thin as a rail, let's get you home to a nice supper," she said as she looked pitifully over at Aunt Petunia. Mrs. Weasley was quite disgusted at how Harry was treated and had to bite her lip each time saw Petunia so not to give her a piece of her mind.
Mr. Weasley greeted Harry with a firm hand shake. "Good to see you Harry. Are you about ready? Ron, go and get Harry's trunk."
"Come on Harry," said Ron "let's get it and get back to the Burrow."
"You don't have to ask me twice," joked Harry.
"Well, nice to see you all again," said Mr. Weasley to the Dursley's as he took Mrs. Weasley's hand and went back to the fireplace.
"Skin and bones" was all Harry heard Mrs. Weasley say before Mr. Weasley grabbed some floo powder and said "The Burrow," and with a POP they were gone.
"Harry stepped into the fireplace with his trunk grabbed some floo powder and said to his Uncle and Aunt "Thank you for everything, I guess." and with a POP! he was gone knowing that he would never return to Privet Drive again.
A/N: next several chapters already written, please let me know if you would like to see more!