The Boy With The Red Hair

Jenna Winter- clumsy, silly, and completely ready to go to Hogwarts. As she boards the train with her older brother, leaving the muggle world behind, she imagines what the next seven years of her life would be like. It would be ordinary, boring even. She wasn't special- definitely not a trouble-maker. But everything changed when she stepped into a compartment and saw the boy with the red hair.

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7. Year Six

 

Mum and dad didn’t want me going to Hogwarts this year. They’re muggles and even they know something bad was happening. Kris called me as well, being a protective older brother.

Luckily, I persuaded them to let me go anyways- really, Hogwarts was the safest place for me to be right now, what with you-know-who out roaming around. At least now no one doubted Harry; it was quite obvious that he was really back because our own Minister of Magic saw him, even if it was fleeting.

I picked up my toothbrush and looked up at myself in the mirror. It was late, about eleven at night, and I was getting ready for bed. I’d been here at the Burrow for about a week, give or take a few days, and I was getting used to coming here before every school year. The Weasley’s were like a second family to me. I considered Ginny my sister and Fred and George as my brothers, but I could never completely look at Ron as a brother.

I’d always hoped that he would ask me out. I first realized this in our fourth year at Hogwarts, when it was time for the Yule Ball. But instead he waited too long. I courteously accepted another other boy’s offer- he was in Hufflepuff, muggle-born as well, and he liked the muggle sport football like me. Every now and then I saw him walking around school, but nothing would ever come of it. I would just nod and smile and he would return the gesture. So when Ron had finally asked me, imagine my despair- being left as a last resort. He was probably asking me as a friend, anyways.

Taking a deep sigh and closing my eyes, I began brushing my teeth. Just stop, Jenna, I told myself. He’s your friend. He’s your best mate. He’s Ron. The boy you’ve known since you were a child. Nothing could ever happen between us.

I pulled my long, dark brown hair over my shoulder and leaned forward over the sink. After rinsing my mouth, I finally opened my eyes again. I was tall, taller than Harry by only a little bit but not nearly to Ron’s height. I was quite fit as well, though Mrs. Weasley insisted that I was too skinny. She made me eat as much as possible whenever I came to stay.

It made me sad to think about the past years. I was so young and innocent, not knowing what Harry and Ron were really doing while I wasn’t around. I’ve known the truth for a year now, almost exactly, and it still seems so surreal that they did all that stuff. Well, I remembered at the End of Year feasts how Professor Dumbledore would commend them for things that they had done, but I never really understood it. Now I knew.

There was a knock on the door and I reached over to open it, revealing Ginny. She gave me a smile before speaking.

“I was wondering if I could borrow that book I saw you reading before dinner- Beauty and the Beast, was it? You seemed really into it, and I have nothing really to do so I thought I might give it a go.”

“Oh no, that’s completely alright! It’s my favourite book; my mum read it to me when I was younger. It’s downstairs, on the couch where I was reading it.” I walked out of the bathroom after Ginny and turned to the room I shared with her.

“Thanks, Jenna!” She yelled as she ran down the stairs.

“No problem!” I answered, heading into our room and sitting down on my bed. It was odd that she had never heard of any of the fairy tales Harry or I did. The other day Ginny asked me about Babbity Rabbity, a story she had grown up with. I hadn’t realized how different families were in the muggle world and the wizarding world. I mean really- who hasn’t heard of Cinderella?!

I could hear Ron, Ginny and Mrs. Weasley talking to each other out on the stairs, but I didn’t pay much attention. Mrs. Weasley was probably telling them off for not doing some random chore outside- probably not de-gnoming the garden or something.

I was about to pick up another book to read when I stopped. There was a noise downstairs, something very familiar about that sound…

I shook my head. It was late, I was tired. I opened the book up and only got a few words read before I heard the sound again. A few seconds later it returned. I snapped the book shut and shut up on the bed.

It was on the tip of my tongue. It was familiar.

It came again and I realized what it was. I jumped off the bed and ran onto the landing outside the room. I leaned over, looking down on Ginny, Ron and Mrs. Weasley.

“Is that an owl I heard?” 

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