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The Dreamless Dream (1/?) WIP

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Jan. 10th, 2013 | 08:06 pm

Title: The Dreamless Dream (1/?)
Author: smirking_muse
Rating: PG-13 now, higher later maybe
Pairing(s): Harry/Ginny, future Harry/Draco
Summary: Harry woke from a coma caused by a bad Dreamless Sleep Potion having forgotten the last six months of his life.  Years later, he is struggling to deal with his failing marriage to Ginny and returns to the potion, only to find it doesn't leave him dreamless anymore.  
Warnings: incredible angst, unhappy relationship Harry/Ginny, not Brit-picked, might be slightly predictable...
Word Count: unsure yet- WIP (~2200 in Chap. 1)
Author's Notes: I have been working on this off and on for the last several months and thought I may as well begin sharing it.  It's not completed yet, but I will keep posting as I go.  Please feel free to share as much as you like!  I've been off LJ for so long, I have no idea what is going on anymore.  Regardless, I am hoping you'll enjoy this (if anyone still reads my LJ)!  I miss my friends here so dearly (esp my dear Missy if you are still around!).  Anyway, I'll stop being sappy and post the first bit. Enjoy! And please share!

Harry ran up to his door and scrambled to get his keys out of his pocket quickly.  He cursed himself again as he tried to get the door open, breathing heavily.

“Ginny, I am so sorry I am late...” He started between gasps as he stepped into their flat.

“I’m sure you have some great excuse,” Ginny said sardonically.  She sounded congested, as though she had been crying.

“I ran into Neville, and he wouldn’t stop talking,” Harry told her. “I’m so sorry.  I didn’t realise it had been an hour and when I did I rushed to get home.” If he was being honest, he didn’t understand why she got so upset every time he came home late these days- whether it was five minutes, or an hour.  This was actually the first time he had been home a whole hour late, and he knew there would probably be hell to pay, but he still didn’t understand why.

“I’m sure you were really concerned,” she said, crossing her arms and walking away.

“I’m really sorry, Ginny,” Harry told her again with a sigh. “Things happen though, you know.” He said it softly, as a way of explanation, but her eyes flared at the statement.

“Things don’t just happen, Harry,” Ginny snapped. “If you want to be with Neville, by all means, go be with Neville.”

“Ginny, what are you talking about?” Harry asked.  He liked spending time with Neville, but so did she.

“If you want to date Neville, then you should date Neville.  You shouldn’t be here with me,” she said, her voice raising and almost becoming hysterical.

“Ginny, I have no idea why you would say that,” Harry said, genuinely puzzled.  “I was only an hour late for dinner...”

“Don’t you?!” she practically yelled at him. “I bet you’d just love to date Neville.”

“Ginny, you’re being ridiculous! I wouldn’t want to date Neville,” Harry told her.  “I have no idea what you’re talking about.”

Ginny opened her mouth as if to yell at him again, but then she shut it and a few tears rolled down her face.  Finally, she turned to him and said, “That’s just it, isn’t it?”

“That’s what?” Harry asked, seriously puzzled.

“You really don’t know what I’m talking about,” she said softly before walking over to the counter, grabbing her sweater and dashing out of the flat before apparating.

Harry put his head in his hands and sighed.  It had been six months since he had woken up in the hospital after a coma caused by a bad batch of Dreamless Sleep.  He found out when he woke up that he had lost about five months of his memory and that he had apparently broken up with Ginny.  No one would tell him why, but he thought he loved her- he remembered them being together and being happy. He had finally convinced her to date him again by proposing to her.  He must have done something really horrible to make her so reluctant to be with him.  It was exhausting, trying to make up for something he couldn’t even remember doing.  

They had never been a perfect couple per se, but their fighting had certainly become more frequent since the coma.  It would probably calm down once Ginny realised he wasn’t going to leave her.  She had probably gone over to Ron and Hermione’s again.  Harry would have to follow her and convince her that he was sorry and that he wanted to be with her.  

At least the make up sex was pretty good.

*** 5 years later

Harry glanced up from the Daily Prophet to see what Ginny was doing.  She had fallen asleep in her chair, the remote loosely grasped in her fingers.  She had been watching one of those dramas with a bunch of women that always yelled at each other and dated everyone.  The tele was already far into another show that Harry didn’t recognize, so he imagined she had been out for a while.  He sighed and picked back up the paper.  He had already read all the articles in it, but he wasn’t interested in the shows Ginny liked and he knew if he took the remote from her, there would be all manner of hell to pay when she woke up and saw him holding it.

Eventually, he put down the paper and started watching the new show.  It wasn’t good, but he wasn’t sure he was ready to go to sleep yet.  He turned from the show to where Ginny sat.  She was across the room- they had given up sitting together years before.  Harry felt like he kept trying to reconnect with her, but he was at a loss to know how anymore.  When they were alone, he felt like she could barely stand him anymore. It was a different story when they were in public- they were still the golden couple after all.  

They barely touched out of the public eye, he felt like he repulsed her, they didn’t agree on anything, and none of this was the way he imagined marriage to be.  He felt suffocated and trapped.  He frowned and twisted the ring on his finger.  Sometimes it felt as though the ring was burning through his skin.

It didn’t help that they had argued for a couple hours earlier about what they should eat for lunch.  It was just lunch!  She wasn’t happy that he didn’t have any input about it, and he didn’t really care what they ate.  He knew she’d be upset if he picked something she didn’t want, and he didn’t know what she did want.  Somehow it wrapped back around to his messed up childhood and her inability to compromise, as their fights often did.  It was so draining and they couldn’t seem to rebound from these fights as easily as they used to.  

The rest of the day was sour and lonely.  He didn’t know how to breach the space or fix it, and she didn’t seem to want to bother anymore.  It felt like they were still fighting, even though they hadn’t said anything for hours.  He pulled the ring off his finger and reluctantly pushed it back down.

“I’m going to bed,” Ginny announced and walked out of the room without waiting for a reply or coming over to kiss him goodnight.  She must have woken while he was thinking.  Harry felt bereft.  He went over to pick up the remote and flipped through the channels for a while before deciding he ought to go get some sleep too.  He had to give the quarterly crime presentation the next day to the auror department.

He slowly walked into their room and lifted the covers to get into bed.  When he did, Ginny turned away from him.  He felt a stab through his stomach and debated about going back to the couch.  He did need his sleep, but he doubted he’d be able to through all the upset and hurt- lying next to her without touching her.

Maybe she would let him.  He moved over to her side and carefully put an arm around her waist- not too high and not too low, just an innocent touch.  She immediately stiffened and grabbed his wrist to move his arm back to his side.  He rolled over as far to his side of the bed as he could, giving her as much space as she needed and watched the clock.

As minute after minute passed, he could hear Ginny’s breathing even and deepen.  He could feel himself feeling more desperate and trapped.  He was never going to get any sleep.  He started to have an idea.  After the war, he had been given Dreamless Sleep Potion so that he could rest without the nightmares.  So many of his friends, mainly Hermione and Ron, had been so concerned that they brought him loads of the potion as he looked more and more exhausted.  He started buying it for himself, so that if a sleepless night came, he would never be without it.  He hadn’t used any in about five years, since he had ended up in a coma from a bad batch, but he knew he still had loads of the stuff leftover, filling his drawer next to the bed.  Now, he felt as though he was living in a nightmare, unable to sleep, unable to see a way out.  It had been weeks since the last time he had gotten an even passable amount of sleep.  Mostly due to his ruminations over his and Ginny’s relationship and often because of their most recent fight.

Surely this would be a good time to take one of the purple potions.  Bad batches were so rare, it was unlikely to happen again.  They had quality inspections to prevent that sort of thing.  Besides, if it did put him in a coma again, at least he would get a few days of rest.  He moved towards the drawer, listening to Ginny’s even breathing.  She didn’t break at all at his movement, so she must be deep in sleep.  He quietly took one of the potions out and downed it quickly, placing the vial back into the drawer.  He wasn’t sure why, but he didn’t want her to know that he was taking it.  It seemed like a silly reason in comparison to the post-war insomnia and nightmares.  He didn’t have long to wait before the potion rolled over him like a tide and he fell asleep.

When he awoke, he felt arms encircling him, one cushioning his head and the other firmly around his waist.  He felt safe, warm, loved, and even happy.  He placed his arms over the one around his waist and squeezed a little, rousing his sleeping partner the barest amount.  Their breath caught before they gave him a small squeeze, kissed his shoulder, and went back to sleep.  Harry delighted in the feeling of being so close to someone else, and feeling so secure in their arms.  Ginny hadn’t touched him in so long- even just cuddling like this, and he didn’t know why she was doing it now, but he loved it.  He reached one arm over his shoulder to rub Ginny’s head the way he knew she liked, but instead of finding her coarse, thick hair, his fingers ran through something silky and smooth.  His partner almost purred and rewarded him with another squeeze and a slow, sleepy kiss on his shoulder.

Had it been so long since he had touched Ginny’s hair that he had forgotten what it felt like?  This couldn’t be a dream- he had taken the Dreamless Sleep Potion, which by very title meant a night without dreams.  He started to roll over, but the arms stopped him, pulling him in closer to the body they were attached to.  Harry decided to stay put and just enjoy the feeling of being surrounded by someone else’s love.  He let out a sigh in contentment and breathed out a soft, “Love you.”  With the words, he felt as though he were letting go of years of their fighting and months of his anguish.  They slipped out on the very breath he had used to form the words.

There was another sleepy kiss on his shoulder before his partner replied in a breathy whisper, “Not as much as I love you.”  That didn’t sound like Ginny at all.  Harry felt suddenly alerted and sat up in bed.

Suddenly, he was back in his room.  He looked around and reached an arm out for Ginny.  Surely she had just been pressed up against his back.  The bed was empty and her side was cold.  She must have already awoken and left the bed some time ago.  He listened for her, and sure enough, he could hear the soft sound of the shower.  It must have been a dream.  She hadn’t just been cuddling with him, and he had no right to feel so secure or loved.  Harry wanted to cry but just laid back down on the bed instead.

Harry looked over to the clock and saw that it was about time to start his morning as well.  He waited until Ginny left the bathroom, and then went to take his shower

When he was eating breakfast, Ginny bustled into the room, grabbing up her last few things before leaving their flat.  When Harry saw that she was going to the door, he said, “Have a good day!” and tried to move as if to give her a peck goodbye.

She waved him off with a simple, “Bye.”

He returned to his toast as she walked out the door, his face falling flat.  He remembered the arms in his dream, and it made everything else seem like an even bigger disappointment.  He wondered if the arms had been a memory of the way he and Ginny used to be.  It hadn’t sounded like her voice, but he couldn’t honestly remember if she used to sound differently.  Maybe that’s all it was- a memory of a happier time.

Harry finished his toast and gathered his things before going to work, pushing the thoughts from his mind.

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