Ginny opened her eyes and breathed deep the sweet air that hinted of roses. Her bed was soft and warm, which tipped her off that she was no longer at St Mungo's. She yawned and rubbed the sleep from her eyes. When she sat up, she was greeted by the loving faces of her parents.
"Mum, Dad—" She gasped. That's not my voice.
Before her parents could respond, Madam Pomfrey approached carrying a cup resting atop a saucer.
Ginny smiled knowingly. I'm at Hogwarts!
Pomfrey handed Ginny the cup. "There you go, dearie, a nice cup of hot chocolate, complements of the headmaster."
"Thank you, Madam Pomfrey." Ginny reached for the cup and noticed how tiny her hands were. She threw off her bed sheet and saw that her bodily proportions were likewise smaller—no, younger. Ginny looked again to the adults gathered around her; her parents and Madam Pomfrey were years younger since she last saw them. Then the memory came flooding back; she knew not only where she was, but when she was. "This was after Harry rescued me from the Chamber of Secrets," she thought aloud.
"You mustn't blame yourself, Harry Potter's girlfriend," her mother, Molly, said. "After all, older and wiser wizards have been hoodwinked by Lord Voldemort."
Ginny snorted, "What did you call me, mum?"
"Don't fret over it anymore, dearie," Pomfrey interrupted. She reached into her pocket. "Here. Have another marshmallow."
Ginny's father was not as forgiving. "Didn't we warn you what would happen if you went about cavorting with boys in strange books?"
Ginny blinked. "I-I wasn't."
"Don't lie to us, Harry Potter's girlfriend."
"That's enough, Arthur," Molly said.
"Yes. There's no need to upset the girl who loves the boy who lived," Pomfrey added. "She's been through enough."
Young Ginny eyed the three of them suspiciously. "Why aren't you calling me by my name?"
"What's in a name," Pomfrey answered. "It's your legacy that people care about." She reached into her pocket and pulled out a scalpel. "Now, lift up your skirt, that's a good girl—"
Ginny could feel the blood leaving her extremities. "W-whatever for?"
"Why, it makes disembowelling you easier, of course"
Pomfrey leaned in with the scalpel, and Ginny leapt off the bed before she could cut her. Her father made a grab for her, and she dove between his legs. The adults worked together in an effort to corral her, but Ginny was too quick for them.
"WHAT THE BLOODY HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE?"
Molly regarded her daughter with a saccharin smile. "It's for you own good, Harry Potter's girlfriend." She inched closer, likewise brandishing a scalpel. "Now, come over here so mummy can cut the fruit of your whoring out of your belly."
Ginny glanced at the window nearby. When the adults made a second go for her, she flung her body through the glass. Falling through the air, she realized that jumping to her death was not an ideal solution to her predicament.
Ginny hit the ground—hard. After a few seconds of stillness, she stirred, surprised that she was still alive, and she rose to her feet. She regarded her hands and saw that they had returned to their normal dimensions. She was an adult again, dressed in her hospital gown.
She looked back to the window high above. Thankfully, Pomfrey and her parents were not following her. Still looking up, she spied a fast approaching object. It was then that she realized that she was without her wand. Fortunately, when the object came within view, she saw that it was her faithful broom. It descended and levitated beside its mistress, and Ginny mounted it, telling it, "Ten seconds ago would've made for better timing."
A glint of metal made her turn her head. A shiny buzzing object taunted her as it flitted about and around her person.
The Golden Snitch!
She made a grab for it, and it darted out of reach. "Right." And she gave chase. It led her away from the castle and along the periphery of the Great Lake. No matter how fast she went, the Snitch managed to stay just beyond her grasp.
The Snitch halted in midair. However, the spell seemed to have the same effect to Ginny's broom: it likewise halted, and Ginny flew off. She landed at Dumbledore's feet, he being the author of the spell.
On her hands and knees, Ginny looked to him and said, "Professor... you have to help me."
Dumbledore's expression remained aloof. "It was foolish of you to come here tonight, Tom." He reached into his pocket to retrieve a large scalpel, and he approached her.
Ginny tried to rise, but she slipped on the wet grass and landed on her bum. "Don't you know me?"
The blade glimmered as he brought it to bear. "The Aurors are on their way."
The old wizard made a swipe at her, but he was no match for Ginny's speed. She scrambled to her feet and ran to the pier at the edge of the lake and untied the boat. The oars magically paddled in the water, and she soon disappeared into the fog. The boat stilled in the quietest part of the lake. Ginny looked over the edge; the water was black and murky. For now, she was safe.
The crack of the teleportation spell revealed Professor Dumbledore standing calmly before her, brandishing his scalpel. Ginny gasped and retreated to the head of the small boat.
"Wait!" Ginny protested. "Y-you can't Apparate on the grounds!"
The old Wizard's thin lips curled into a hint of a smile. "You can if you happen to be Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore, my dear."
The air whistled when a long tendril-like object shot out of the water. It latched onto Dumbledore's arm, causing him to drop the scalpel. Three more such objects assailed him, each fiercely latched onto one of Dumbledore's limbs. Ginny immediately recognized the pale, sinewy tentacles from the squid that lived in the lake.
Quartered, Dumbledore was hoisted into the air, unable to get at his wand and struggling in vain to free his arms and legs.
A fifth tentacle of superior girth appeared out of the water. Its movements were more methodical than the other four. It leveraged its many suction cups to move with deliberation higher up Dumbledore's leg, unseen beyond the hem of his robe. Dumbledore continued to struggle, but the squid would not be denied, relentless in pursuit of its dark goal. The tentacle reached the apex of its ascent, and Dumbledore's body involuntarily seized, enduring a sensation without precedent. A second and third tentacle joined their twin under the crowded robe.
The wizard's legs parted. "Oh, my…." And he relented.
Ginny couldn't bear the display, and she covered her eyes. Unfortunately, this did nothing to spare her ears—like a spoon stirring oily pasta.
Embracing and entwined with his pulsating prison, Dumbledore was content to slip quietly into the water.
All was peaceful again on the open loch. Ginny waited for several minutes; there was no sign of the squid or Dumbledore. She reached for the oars and started to turn the boat around.
The oar disturbed the water.
She was startled by a lone tentacle that broke the surface and landed inside the boat. The pale tentacle, stained brown and red, probed blindly and angrily. It raked close to Ginny's foot, and she retreated to the end of the boat, being careful not to rock it lest it give her away. The probe continued to explore the boat—it knew she was there.
In epiphany, Ginny called for her broom again. As she had hoped, Dumbledore's spell had worn off, so the broom obeyed her command and raced her way from the edge of the bank. Meanwhile, a second tentacle ascended from the water and came down hard, slicing the boat in two. The piece she was in started to sink. The broom would never make it in time, so she took a deep breath and dove into the water with the squid in pursuit. A tentacle lashed out at her; she grabbed it and bit into it as hard as she could.
This only angered the squid. It caught Ginny by the ankle and pulled her in.
Ginny's broom plunged into the water and quickly found its mistress fighting a losing battle. Like a torpedo, it rammed into the squid, causing it to release Ginny. While the squid recovered, Ginny was able to grab a hold of her broom, and she was off just as the squid made another grab for her.
Ginny made a dash for the sewer as the squid was hot on her heels, its tentacles probing the bowels of Hogwarts to exact revenge on its elusive prey.
I hate being the bloody Snitch!
Ginny was running out of air, but she trusted her broom. There was a hint of light at the end of one of the pipes, and the broom knowingly make a dash for it. A tentacle grasped at Ginny's hair, and she screamed, expelling the last of her air just as she broke through the grate.
She flew through the air and landed on the hard dry ground. She spat out the remnants in her mouth that tasted of sewage and managed to her feet. There was no sign of her broom, but upon surveying the area, she soon discovered that she was no longer in the castle; she wasn't even on the grounds.
How did I end up in Diagon Alley?
She was ready for this nightmare to be over, but not before discovering why she was here. The street was dark and deserted at this hour. There was no sign of life save for the lights being on in the shop at the corner. She approached the modest building. The sign over the door read, 'Flourish and Blotts.'
Ginny opened the door and ventured inside. The small shop was as she remembered, with every shelf and every baseboard lined with books of every flavour. She proceeded to the common area and smiled when she saw the man whom she loved.
"Harry!" she screamed.
Harry opened his arms and Ginny leapt into them.
A full breath later, she parted from his kiss, saying, "I've missed you." She rested her head on his shoulder. "What are you doing here?"
Harry kissed the top of her head. "I have to cut him out of you, Gin." And he plunged the sword of Gryffindor into her belly.
A barely audible gasp escaped her lips as her beloved turned the blade—his elbow going back and forth in a sawing motion.
Ginny half-awoke from her trance screaming.
Bunbley tried to restrain her to no avail. "Miss Weasley, it's all right! You're safe!" Her flailing arms knocked the elf off the examination table. He hit the floor, his foot twisting at an odd angle. Though in pain, he managed to snap his fingers, and Ginny stopped screaming.
She sat up from the table cradling her belly. When her heart returned to its regular rhythm, she looked to the elf who lay still on the floor. "Healer Bunbley?" He did not respond. She hopped off the table and went to his side. "Are you alright?"
Bunbley stirred. "My leg," he said weakly.
Ginny picked him up and placed him gently on the table. "It's sprained. Let me help you."
Wincing, he quickly sat up. "No way, I'll manage." He chortled through the pain, saying, "You have issues."
Ginny smiled. "Thanks to you I know what I have to do." She stroked the little grey tuft at the top of his head. "Will you be all right?"
"Of course." He eyed her warily. "What are up to, now?"
"Patient heal thyself, right?" She turned to leave.
"You should be in bed," he called out to her; however, she had already left.