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The Second Prophecy

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Summary: The existence of the Key has changed the destiny of the Wizarding World's 'Chosen One'. A second prophecy and meeting of the two throws both teenagers into one of the hardest tasks they have ever faced.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Harry Potter > Dawn-Centered > Pairing: Harry PotterIllusionsofBlissFR1524134,42369831,25720 Aug 1114 Apr 13No

When They Go to Hogwarts

Disclaimer: None of these characters from Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Harry Potter belong to me; I’m just using them to hopefully write an entertaining story.

Author's Note: Come on, guys! Please keep the feedback coming by taking the time to let me know what you think, I’ll love you all forever. Hehehe.

And someone for pointed out that I’d accidentally called it an Epilogue instead of a Prologue – I always do that, stupid brain!


*****


Chapter Six – When They Go to Hogwarts


The next morning came quickly; Dawn was quite pleased that, although she felt slightly uneasy on her feet, not once did she feel the need to be violently sick, huddled over the toilet bowl. Another thing she was thankful she could do that morning without any disgusting repercussions was be able to eat breakfast. As herself, Willow and Faith all sat in the kitchen eating, an abrupt cracking noise followed by the sudden appearance of Remus Lupin in the doorway, made Dawn spit out the mouthful of cereal she was in the process of chewing. None of them had expected, or knew for that matter, that the wizard was capable of such transportation.

“Whoa, that was awesome!” Willow seemed quite impressed and fascinated.

The first thing that came to Dawn’s mind was that she thought she’d heard that same cracking noise before but couldn’t quite place where. "Can all you wizarding folk do that?" she asked, begrudgingly cleaning up the splattered milk and half-chewed cereal off the table.

"Generally, all wizards and witches can apparate like that when they come of age – after their seventeenth birthday," he explained as he pulled out something from his pocket, it was about the size of a large apple and wrapped up tightly in a cloth.

Suddenly it hit her, she remembered where she’d heard that sound before and was mentally kicking herself for even forgetting. "That must be what he did," she found herself muttering, as she thought back to that fateful night.

She only just realised that she'd heard that same cracking noise when Harry had mysteriously disappeared to avoid being caught by Buffy and Willow. Well, it certainly wasn’t a mystery anymore, not that she had given it much thought it, being caught up in everything else, she hadn’t given much thought of how Harry had escaped the hotel room without using the door or window.

"What who did?" Willow questioned her curiously, it was only then that Dawn realised that she'd spoken out loud. She really had to watch herself more closely.

Dawn shook her head, shooting a quick glance at Lupin, who was looking at her curiously. “Sorry, nothing important.”

"So, this 'apparate' thing," Faith began, swinging around to sit on a backwards kitchen chair and resting her arms folded on the back of the chair. "Is that how we're getting to this Hogwarts place? Oh, and hey, I’m Faith," she added casually as an afterthought.

Lupin nodded politely. “Nice to meet you, you must be the other slayer Rupert has told me about,” Faith gave a quick nod. "And in answer to your question - it wouldn't be very time-efficient as we would have to take turns doing side-by-side apparition, besides you can't apparate directly into the Hogwarts grounds and so there would be a decent walk involved," Lupin explained as Buffy and Xander joined them. "That's where this comes in handy."

He carefully unwrapped the item, he'd earlier pulled from his pocket, to reveal a petite, dark purple perfume bottle, taking care to place it on the kitchen counter without touching it. Dawn was completely confused as to why he’d gone to such an effort not to make skin contact with it and what exact it had to do with them getting to Hogwarts.

"A perfume bottle?" Buffy asked with raised eyebrows. "Unless we’re all gonna pull an 'I Dream of Jeannie' and get shrunk down and carried in that bottle – I don't get it."

The others chuckled, while Dawn could see that the joke was obviously lost on Lupin. "Of course not, this is a portkey. A portkey looks like an ordinary item but actually has been enchanted to transport oneself from one place to another when touched."

"Ah Remus, you're here," Giles said as he entered the kitchen. "Oh, and you've got the portkey. Brilliant."

“You know what a portkey is, Giles?” Xander asked.

Giles nodded with a slight hesitation. "I've had the opportunity, while at the Watcher's Council, of using one a couple of times. It's an... interesting experience. But anyway, you’ll soon see for yourselves. Now if everyone could be ready within the hour, we'll be leaving just before nine o'clock," he informed them, checking his watch.

Just before everyone began fumbling around the house to get ready, Buffy wanted to ask one more question. "Lupin, one thing that crossed my mind earlier was - won't this Harry Potter guy from the prophecy be at Hogwarts? I'm not sure if it's the greatest idea-"

"Harry hasn't returned to Hogwarts this year, his whereabouts is currently unknown, so that won't be an issue," Lupin cut Buffy off to immediately put to rest any of her concerns; she seemed satisfied by his answer, although this stirred up the fear in Dawn from yesterday, that he wouldn’t ever be found.

Having a million questions for the wizard, Dawn was relieved when she was able to pull Lupin aside once everyone had gone their separate ways. "Remus," she began but was cut off by him bringing a silencing finger to his lips.

"Just a moment..." Lupin trailed off, pulling his wand out from his pocket and muttering a spell, which was followed by a quick glow around the room. "Okay, go ahead - just had to make sure no one was listening in."

She knew that it wasn’t the most appropriate time for a long discussion, but she found the more Lupin told her about magic and the Wizarding World, the more interested and excited to go to Hogwarts she found herself. There was also a slight feeling of butterflies in her stomach at the thought of going to the school where Harry had gone, she felt compelled to learn more about the father of her child because, let's face it – at this stage she pretty much knew almost nothing. The other thing that had briefly crossed her mind was - if Harry was a wizard and her being the Key, what would the baby be capable of doing as it grew? The prophecy said that it would be powerful enough to destroy an evil wizard, that nobody else had been able to do up until now. She hold those questions at bay for now, jumping straight to the most important one at that point in time.

"Um, I was just wondering," she said softly. "Will everything be okay with the portkey and well, you know," she trailed off, quickly glancing down at her stomach.

Lupin nodded reassuringly. "I've already taken that into consideration, it's the quickest but safest way I could think of for both of you to travel without resorting to muggle forms of transport."

Dawn was going to ask what a muggle was but once again decided it was best to save it for another time. She was relieved to hear that he had taken her safety into account, and didn’t have any reason not to trust his judgement because if Giles trusted the man, than she should be able to as well.

Suddenly, Lupin had begun to busy himself with making a cup of tea. "With what you said just before," he began, glancing over his shoulder. "Did you see Harry apparate?"

Dawn nodded, coming to the realisation that Lupin was a very observant man. "Kinda... I only heard the cracking noise and turned to see him gone. It was kinda good he did, ‘coz Buffy and Willow would've... you know, caught us," she turned slightly pink as the last few words left her mouth.

It was a good thing that at this stage Dawn couldn't see Lupin's reaction; she already felt embarrassed enough as it was, sharing this with someone she barely knew and considering her lack of experience in that whole department. Furthermore, she was also thankful that he didn't find it necessary to reply to this either, perhaps adding to the embarrassment.

"Oh, I've been meaning to ask," Dawn quickly changed the topic, as Lupin turned and leant against the kitchen bench top, clutching his tea. "The first day you came to see Giles, when he introduced us, I noticed you gave me a strange look - what was the deal with that?"

Lupin thought back for a moment. “That’s right; as I recall, I thought I sensed the slightest difference with you, compared with the others.”

“You mean my Key-ness?”

"Not exactly," he answered as he tried to find the right words. "I believe, well, I presume I was picking up on the baby, I just didn't realise it at the time."

Dawn panicked - just how many other people would be able to tell? "If you could feel it then what's stopping half of Hogwarts from knowing when we get there?"

Lupin shook his head. “Don’t worry about that, this sense is something that no one at Hogwarts will have.”

Dawn tried to put the pieces together, then her eyes widened as she came to a realisation. "You're not just a wizard are you?... Are you a werewolf?"

"How did you know?" His face lit up in surprise and apprehension, she also observed that he’d shuffled his feet uncomfortably.

"Well for starters - I'm the sister of a Slayer, I've seen just about everything. And secondly, I know another werewolf back home, Oz, and every now and then he could sense things like that...” she explained, noticing that the werewolf seemed to relax when she spoke fondly of Oz. People mustn’t have reacted well to him being a werewolf in the past, she thought to herself. “You know what, you should ask Giles about Oz – I know Oz would love to get in touch with a fellow werewolf."

“He’s been able to control his transformations?” Dawn nodded. “And without a potion?” Lupin asked curiously.

“You could say that,” Dawn explained. “He found a group of others that were able to help him back when he was having some trouble with it; he’s doing well now, last I heard.”

The sudden sound of her sister's voice brought a premature end to their conversation."Dawn? Are you packed already?" Buffy's call from upstairs echoed throughout the house. Both their heads had snapped around at this sudden sound.

Lupin turned back to look at her. "Thank you, Dawn, I'll be sure to ask Giles about that," he said warmly, obviously quite relieved on how accepting she was of his werewolf side, because not many were.

Dawn smiled at him before she turned and ran upstairs to pack.


*****


The portkey experience for the group was a bizarre one, even though Lupin had tried to best prepare them for it, most of them ended up landing with a thud on their backsides, excluding Buffy and Faith who obviously had an advantage of slayer reflexes and control. When they had all appeared on the track in front of the Hogwarts' gates, Dawn was thankful that Lupin had given her a steadying hand to keep her too from falling on her back, or from doing any other damage. Although, she didn’t get by without any negative effects from their journey, as the others took in the sights of Hogwarts in the distance, Dawn cursed as she felt that nauseous feeling rise up throat.

"Crap," was all she managed to get out before she had to dash over to a nearby bush to throw up, all the while mentally chastising herself for thinking she could go a day without doing so.

Because he was already right there to stop her from losing balance when they’d first appeared, and probably was already expecting some sort of nausea, Lupin was the first there to make sure she was alright. Buffy was quick to follow him.

“Wow, you've had a weak stomach lately, first the carsickness and now this. You okay?" Buffy asked as she pulled back Dawn's long, brown hair.

Geez, lucky Buffy’s a bit too much of a blonde sometimes, Dawn thought to herself, thinking that when Buffy worded it like that and had full knowledge about the prophecy, surely she'd be able to put two and two together.

Fortunately for Dawn, she didn't say anything else on the matter and the ill feeling quickly passed, so she joined the others again. "Yep. Just a little queasy, no biggie... Wow, is that Hogwarts?" She wanted to swiftly change the focus off her, especially when Faith gave her a lingering look, which threw Dawn into momentarily feeling a panic; however the slayer simply shrugged and turned to admire the castle with everyone else.

The school was the most amazing building she'd ever seen, and probably twice the size she had imagined it to be from what Giles and Lupin had told her. As soon as her eyes had set upon the castle, she thought she felt as if Hogwarts was calling her in for some reason, and she gave a confused frown. This feeling increased as they all made their way up to the gates - she felt right at home. But how could this be when she’d never even been to Hogwarts before? They were met at the gates by easily the largest man any of the Scoobies had ever seen, who Lupin immediately greeted kind-heartedly.

"Good morning, Hagrid," Lupin said pleasantly to the giant man, with a smile.

"Mornin’, Remus!" Hagrid replied enthusiastically, turning his attention to the newcomers. "Ah, I see yeh've brought the visitors."

"Yes, I know we're a little early, but I hope you still had time to make the accommodation arrangements," Lupin replied.

This immediately stirred up an unexpected excitement in Dawn; she'd never been in a castle before, much less one filled with magic, and to be staying there for who knows how long... she felt butterflies stir up in her stomach from it all.

Meanwhile, Hagrid had nodded. "Their bags arrived just before, took them up meself to their rooms."

"Excellent,” Lupin replied, sounding pleased. “Hagrid... I would like to meet Rupert Giles, Buffy and Dawn Summers, Willow Rosenberg, Xander Harris and Faith Lehane," he introduced while motioning towards each person as he spoke.

Hagrid took the time to smile at each one of them, including Dawn, who could already see that there was a friendliness and likeability to the extremely tall man by the manner in which he greeted them all. Eventually, he directed his gaze towards the two women standing to the right of her. "You must be the slayers," he said looking at Buffy and Faith. "Nice to meet yeh's."

"Hey, Hagrid," Buffy greeted, as she craned her head up to look at him. "Wow, you're tall! Must run in your family?"

Hagrid chuckled light-heartedly. "Half-giant meself, actually."

"Hagrid is also the Grounds and Keys Keeper here at Hogwarts," Lupin explained. “As well as our Magical Creatures Professor.”

This perked the attention of several of the Scoobies, particularly Xander. "Magical Creatures? Like Dragons and stuff?" Hagrid nodded and Dawn watched as Xander's face light up like a child on Christmas morning. "That's so cool!"

"Well, off we go. Follow me," Hagrid replied with a hearty laugh, motioning them onwards and they all began the journey up to the castle entrance. Dawn followed towards the back of the group, and as they got closer to the castle, the reality of the sheer size of it became apparent to her, she was almost safe in thinking that it was bigger than Sunnydale was.

When they finally ascended on the dauntingly-large front entrance to Hogwarts, a sense of both calm and nervousness washed over Dawn. She somewhat felt like she was coming home, yet she'd obviously never set foot on these grounds, but she took comfort in it. There was also a nervousness that had stirred within in her at the thought that through those doors were many people who knew, and were probably friends of the father of her child. Only months ago, he'd walked the corridors of this castle, and that gave her hope that he'd soon be back again and she would get to see him again – there was definitely so much to talk about too.

Once inside, they were greeted by an older, distinguished woman wearing dark burgundy robes and her greying hair twisted up in a bun. Hagrid introduced her to all the newcomers as Professor McGonagall, the recently appointed headmistress of Hogwarts. Dawn thought that she looked like she was the kind of teacher you wouldn’t want to get on the bad side of, yet there was also a softer, maternal side to her as well.

Professor McGonagall gave a polite nod to acknowledge the visitors. "Please all make yourselves comfortable in the rooms that we’ve organised for you be staying in, which have been accommodation for our teaching staff in the past. Except for Miss Summers here," she paused to look towards Dawn. "We have a spare bed up in one of our student houses, which we all thought was more appropriate for her, to be with others her age."

Buffy, Willow and Giles all nodded in agreement. Dawn immediately suspected that they all had a role to play in this, thinking that she was struggling with not being around people her own age. Given the current situation, she wasn't at all upset to be staying away from them; she wasn't sure how long she'd be able to hide her pregnancy if she was sharing with her sister or Willow, surely they would’ve noticed her morning sickness. Then again, she hoped that whoever it was she was staying with wouldn’t notice either; one way or the other, it was a difficult situation.

McGonagall continued on. "The students have been informed that visitors were arriving from the newly reformed Watcher's Council, as were two slayers. However, the students do not know the real reason behind your visit; they simply believe you to be here for extra security for Hogwarts in these dark times.” She had a grim expression for a moment, before she brought her hands together. “Now, we'll let you get settled in properly. Hagrid will see to it that there is a tour around the castle and then we will all be back here at the Great Hall for dinner at 6pm. I look forward to properly meeting you all later."

“Now, if yeh would all like to follow me, I will show you all to yeh rooms,” Hagrid began. “Except for Dawn, Miss Brown will show yeh to the Gryffindor Tower.”

Just then a girl about Dawn’s age, with blonde hair and a red and gold scarf wrapped around her neck approached the group. She threw an obligatory smile at the group and wandered over to Dawn. “Hi, I’m Lavender, Lavender Brown.”

"Hi, I'm Dawn," Dawn replied with smile, although still yet to make a judgment on the girl.

Buffy turned to Dawn. “Okay Dawn, be careful and we’ll met back up when Hagrid gives us the grand tour.”

Dawn rolled her eyes. “Be careful? Giles already said that this is one of the safest places to be, how much trouble can I get here?”

Buffy threw her a sceptical look before the group began to follow Hagrid up the nearest staircase, with the exception of Giles and Lupin who lingered back with the intention of discussing something important with the Headmistress. Dawn figured it must have been about the slayer they thought was somewhere at Hogwarts.

“Well anyway,” Lavender chirped, as she led Dawn out of the Entrance Hall. “Let’s go up to the girl’s dormitories in the Gryffindor Tower – you’ll be staying with me and Parvati in the seventh year girl’s dorm.”

“What’s Gryffindor?” Dawn quizzed as the amount of corridors and turns they made had meant she’d already lost her sense of direction.

Lavender let out a laugh, as if the question was a kind of insult to her. “Only the best house at Hogwarts... you see there are four houses that all the students are sorted into: Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff and Slytherin. They’re all generally known for their different traits...”

"And what's Gryffindor known for?" Dawn inquired hesitantly, still undecided on whether she liked the blonde witch yet.

"Bravery, of course. Especially when it has the one and only Harry Potter in it."

Dawn's ears perked up and her head snapped to look at the girl beside her. "Did you just say Harry Potter?"

Lavender grinned and there was an air of smugness to it, Dawn was starting to get a bit annoyed by it. "Yes, he's a seventh year too... although he and his two friends, Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger, haven't returned this year.” Dawn noticed there was a slight bitterness in Lavender’s tone as she said the two names. “I heard something about them being off with some secret mission that Harry was given before Dumbledore, the last Headmaster, died... I see even though you're a Muggle you've still heard about Harry Potter and You Know Who."

She quickly shrugged Lavender’s observation away because she suddenly had so many questions, one being she still wanted to know what a muggle was. She spent the entire walk up to the Tower trying to find out from Lavender as much about Harry as possible.


*****


After a week, and many wrong turns and dead ends around the castle later, the 'Scoobies' seemed to feel a little less out of place at Hogwarts, Willow in particular was having the time of her life finding out all about the Wizarding World. Strangely, for Dawn she'd felt quite at home in the castle from the moment she'd arrived, except in the dormitory she was sharing with Lavender and Parvati – trying to hide morning sickness whilst sharing a room with two other people proved extremely difficult. Fortunately, she had managed to so far by trying to be up and about before they had even woken up each morning; therefore if the sickness reared its ugly head, she'd be able to find a girl's bathroom in a more deserted part of the castle to puke her guts out.

One particular afternoon, Dawn was intending to see if Lupin was around the castle so that she could quiz him about his progress in finding Harry's whereabouts. Thankfully, Buffy and the others were out of her hair for a few hours; they were still looking into locating the slayer that had been linked to Hogwarts. She saw this as a perfect opportunity to track down the werewolf to talk.

However, she was quickly side-tracked by the familiar nauseous wave beginning to wash over her. She glanced down at her stomach and spoke under her breath, frustratingly. "Seriously, please stop... I've got nothing left to barf up!"

In a matter of seconds, she felt it rising up her throat, and so she dashed along the corridor and into a nearby girl's bathroom. She was familiar with this particular bathroom because she'd hidden out in there the day before. Without hesitation, she ran into the nearest stall and proceed to vomit up the food she'd actually quite enjoyed at lunch, all while hoping that nobody was nearby to witness the unpleasant display because she hadn’t exactly had a chance to check if the room was empty.

"Are you okay?" A sudden soft, female voice appeared just outside her stall. Dawn hadn’t had time to lock the door or even properly close it in her rush, so the stranger slowly pushed the ajar door completely open, in order to survey the situation.

The nauseous wave had passed for the time being, so she quickly wiped her mouth and fumbled to flush the toilet, before looking up at the owner of the voice. Before her stood a petite, red-headed girl, maybe slightly younger than her, with a look of concern on her features.

“I’m fine,” Dawn replied, as she quickly stood up and tried to make it look as if it were nothing.

She marched over to the basins and splashed some fresh, cooling water over her heated face and took a quick sip in order to wash the horrible, acidic taste from her mouth. She steadied herself by gripping the basin and peered up to look at the red-headed girl in the mirror.

"Are you sure?" The redhead asked with a deep frown, the girl seemed quite sincere in her concern. Dawn quickly nodded. "I'm Ginny; by the way... you must be here with the slayers and those Watcher's Council people."

Dawn offered a friendly smile. “Yep, that would be me. I’m Dawn... I see you’re in Gryffindor, I’m staying up there in the seventh year’s dorm.”

Ginny nodded. "Yes, I'm a sixth year in the dormitory just down the corridor from you. Are you sure you're alright? You must have eaten something bad... you're obviously not pregnant," the younger girl said with amusement, obviously hoping to get a laugh out of the situation.

Caught off-guard, Dawn's face immediately fell at the attempt of humour and the tears immediately began to leak from her eyes. She darted back towards the toilet, as round two of the current nausea washed over her. Ginny's eyes widened in surprise and horror, as she swiftly followed Dawn to hold her long, brown hair from falling in her face, as the older girl threw up for the second time in a matter of minutes.

"I'm so sorry, Dawn!" Ginny began apologetically, as sobs began to shake Dawn's body while she knelt over the toilet. "I was only joking... if I'd known, I wouldn't-"

“It’s... it’s o-okay,” Dawn replied as she sat upright and accepted a tissue from Ginny to wipe her eyes.

"Have you known for long?" Ginny quizzed hesitantly, and Dawn could tell that she felt extremely awkward about the whole situation. "Sorry, I don't mean to pry or anything, but if you needed someone to talk to..."

She once again walked over to the sink, resting her hands on either side and dropping her head in misery, tears still flowing down her cheeks. "I-It's all still pretty new... I-I haven't even told my sister yet," she glanced up to see Ginny looking confused. "S-She's the slayer – the blonde, short one... B-Buffy."

"Oh yes,” Ginny said in a drawn out voice. “She's the one I saw arm-wrestling Hagrid yesterday, Merlin, she's unbelievably strong."

Dawn turned to lean her back against the sink, trying to gain some composure. "Y-You see why I can't tell her - she'd kill me! I'm only seventeen... ugh, I can't do this!"

Even though Ginny was pretty much a complete stranger, Dawn had been struggling with her secret for over a week now, and actually felt some relief that she was talking to someone who just might be able to understand or sympathise with her situation. Yes, Lupin had been supportive so far, but it was nice to be able to chat with someone her own age.

“Please tell me if I’m being a prying bint, and don't worry, my brothers tell me I am all the time – but what about the father?... I’m assuming you haven’t told him either,” Ginny inquired softly.

She knew for everyone's safety, that she couldn't tell Ginny the complete truth, especially since being a Gryffindor, Ginny obviously knew Harry, although to what extent Dawn wasn't sure. Dawn quickly shook her head. "Well... it's so totally messed up and complicated! That's another reason I can't tell Buffy, she would know straight away who he is and track him down and do who knows what to him," Dawn shook her head at the ridiculousness of it all.

All of a sudden, Dawn felt slightly light-headed and decided to slide down the wall next to the basins until she was sitting up against it. She heard Ginny ask her one more time if she was feeling alright, who then followed suit until she was sitting beside the brunette.

“You could at least tell him, couldn’t you?”

There were a couple of things that struck Dawn; firstly – it was nice to have someone to talk to who would just listen and not jump straight into an excruciatingly long lecture. Secondly, she felt quite comfortable opening up to Ginny, there was a soft and caring nature from the girl that made Dawn sure that, if she got to know Ginny better, she knew that they could become quite good friends.

"Please don't judge me after I tell you this," Dawn began cautiously, squeezing her eyes shut, while some tears still escaped. "But... I barely know him. I only met him once... Actually, I have no idea where to find him. I guess it's why I haven't told anyone, ‘coz deep down I feel like I need to find him and tell him before anyone else. He deserves to know, but who knows if or when that'll happen... Oh god, this makes me sound like such a skank.” She finally made eye contact with the redhead. “I’m totally not.”

She quickly looked away in embarrassment. Her face had flushed slightly at her admission, which began her wondering how everyone, including strangers, would react to her once the truth got out. Basically, she was a pregnant seventeen-year-old from a one-night stand, how could that ever be looked at in a positive light? Meanwhile, a ghost of a frown appeared on Ginny's face; however Dawn got the impression that she was really trying hard to mask her reaction as to not offend her.

"You’re right... that is quite complicated," Ginny noted awkwardly. "You haven’t known for long, who knows what will happen, but all I know is that things always have some way of working out... I'm sure they do."

"Thanks...” Dawn trailed off with a small smile, feeling slightly buoyed by Ginny’s positive attitude. “Anyway, enough about me - we could talk about this for hours if we don’t stop," Dawn took note of the time and came to a sudden realisation. "Hey, classes are on at the moment, why are you hanging out in here? I can think of better places to hang out."

Dawn immediately noticed a change in Ginny's demeanour, as she turned her head away to stare intently at a random cobweb in the far corner. She knew then that the girl had plenty of her own problems. "Well, I don’t really want to go to classes at the moment,” Ginny explained sadly. “I... I just can't handle it right now..."

"If you wanna talk about..." It was Dawn's turn to counsel the other girl. “It’s only fair, you’ve had to listen to me.”

Ginny sighed and brought a hand up to her face, and she could tell that the redhead was trying hard to keep it all together. They sat in silence for a for more moments before she was able to form an answer. "It’s pretty pathetic, really,” Ginny began. “The boy I've basically been in love with since I was eleven... well, he broke my heart. I know there's a war going on at the moment and I have my OWLs coming up, but... but even though it happened months ago, it's all I can seem to think about. And it still hurts so much."

“What did he do? He didn’t cheat on you, did he?”

Ginny was quick to shake her head, as a lone tear trickled down her porcelain-skin cheek. "No, nothing like that – he suddenly broke it off with me. He said he was protecting me, that he didn't want me to get hurt because of the war against You-Know-Who."

Why would you get hurt by being with him?" Dawn asked, slightly confused.

She noticed that Ginny looked extremely uncomfortable, and suddenly it was like she didn’t want to open up about it anymore, so the younger girl shook her head. "It doesn't matter... it's just like you - too complicated. And I just can't bear to talk about it right now, especially when it obvious that other people have larger problems," she finished, throwing Dawn a sympathetic look.

After a contemplative silence, Dawn finally spoke up. "You know what? We don't need them..."

Ginny frowned. “Who?”

"Men!" Dawn exclaimed, a little too loudly. "We've both been screwed over by guys; you're British – you’d have no problem taking a leaf out of the Spice Girls' book."

"Um, who?" the redhead replied again.

Dawn chuckled to herself at Ginny’s thoroughly confused expression; she had to remember to stop throwing in muggle references (she finally knew what a muggle was) to the Wizarding-folk. "Doesn't matter. But anyway their motto was 'Girl Power!' – us girls have gotta look after each other. So, if you ever need someone to talk to...”

Ginny offered a small smile, putting her hand on the Dawn's shoulder as a symbol of gratitude. "Thank you."

"Right back at ya," Dawn replied sincerely.

Suddenly, the echo of the bell ringing out in the hallway broke the two out of their deep and meaningful conversation. Ginny brushed at her school skirt before she sprung up with a sudden enthusiasm, proceeding to offer Dawn a helping hand.

“I should go, Professor Trelawney wouldn’t have noticed my absence, but if I show up late for Transfiguration with McGonagall...”

Dawn nodded; she looked over and noticed a large split in one of the wooden cubicle doors that she knew definitely wasn't there yesterday, when she'd made an unscheduled stop into the bathroom.

"That wasn’t you, was it?" she asked, to which Ginny nodded sheepishly. "My sister Buffy likes to let loose on a punching bag to get her anger out, apparently it works well."

Ginny snickered, quickly checking her appearance in the mirror before giving Dawn another smile and walking towards the door. She briefly paused to add before she left, "Well, Dawn, if you need to talk or anything, I'm in the dorm right down the hall."

“Same goes for you, Ginny.” And with that a friendship between the two began.
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