Disclaimer: All the characters, places, objects in this fanfic belong to JK Rowling. I'm just borrowing them for a while.
Tuesday 6th July 2004
Fans Go Potty As Potter Is No Longer Listed In The Harpies Squad
The Holyhead Harpies have shocked both their own fans and the wider wizarding public with the announcement of their squad for the new season, commencing on Saturday 7th August. For the past five seasons the name of Ginevra Potter, (known as Ginny), formerly Weasley, has been firmly associated with the famous number four shirt, previously worn by Holyhead Harpies legends Lianne Aluko (1990 – 1997), Faye Smith (1959 – 1963) and Kelly White (1971 -1977).
Potter was given the number four shirt when she signed for the all female Quidditch team as an 18 year old in June 1999, straight off the Hogwarts Gryffindor team. Since the 1999/2000 season, Potter has grown from being a promising youngster, to international star after the 2002 World Cup and emulated the previous players to wear the Harpies legendary number four shirt as she broke numerous goal scoring records dismissing any initial doubters. Many of whom claimed that she had been offered her place in the squad as she was the girlfriend of The-Boy-Who-Lived and The Man-Who-Defeated-He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named and not due to record a breaking season in her seventh year at Hogwarts (1998 – 1999).
Closer inspection of the new squad lists for all the British and Irish Quidditch league shows that not only is Potter not listed as a Holyhead Harpies player but she has disappeared from the league. This provided the impression that Potter may have made the big money move to the American side to the Fitchburg Finches who had been rumoured to be chasing Potter's signature for the last two seasons, prompting Harpies manager, Hope Johnson, to directly address the fans at 9 o'clock yesterday morning. Ginny Potter herself has of yet been unavailable for comment.
"Ginevra Potter has retired from Quidditch," Johnson told fans camped outside the stadium. "I had a conversation with Ginny at Easter and she told me that she did not want to renew her contract, which expired this summer. We discussed her reasoning behind her decision, which was in no way financially orientated and Ginny explained that she wanted to focus on some of her goals outside the world of Quidditch. Reluctantly, we have accepted her decision."
Johnson later went on to thank Potter for her service to the club and to praise her conduct, talent and professionalism. "Ginny has firmly written her name into the Harpies record books, proving herself an exceptional Chaser. However, things move on and we would not only like to wish Ginny the best of luck with everything she does in the future but welcome our new two million Galleon signing, Louisa Blanc from the Quiberon Quafflepunchers. Louisa was top scorer in the French league for the last two seasons and is promising to be just as good as Ginny."
Fans have yet to be convinced by Johnson's words and are making no secret of their disappointment at Potter's departure. "Ginny was the only reason that we have won the league for the last two seasons," 16 year old, Miranda Ogden claimed, "If it had not been for her injury in the last two months of the season, we'd have won it by a landslide too, given the lead in the league the team had. But that just makes my point: the team fell apart without her goals."
The Holyhead Harpies won the British and Irish league last year with a total of 63 points, 57 of those points were won prior to Potter's injury.
Miranda's mother, Veronica Ogden agreed with her daughter, "Whenever Ginny was closing in on goal, there was no doubt that she would score, that's a quality only the greats have." She also added, "It's going to be hard for Blanc to fill Ginny's shoes but if I'm honest with myself, I've been expecting this since June 2000 when Ginny married Harry Potter."
Fears of Ginny Potter leaving the Harpies team have been expressed since 2000 when she gave up her maiden name and married the hero of the wizarding world and top quality Auror, Harry Potter. At that time Ginny Potter issued a rare press statement stating that she had every intention of staying in the Harpies squad and that she had many more goals to score. "My marriage changes nothing except my surname. I am still a Harpies player and still have the same goals: those I hope to score for the Harpies this season and those that involve getting a full England cap."
All this leads us at the Daily Prophet to question, what has changed in the last four years and to wonder if Ginny's retirement has got anything to do with the so called injury that appeared from nowhere. Potter missed the last two months of the Quidditch season and England's match with Portugal in June due to an injury that was picked up in training with the Harpies. No further details of the injury were given at the time from either the Harpies or those questioned in the Weasley family, leaving many to believe the injury could be a cover for something else and that the Potters were about to grace the wizarding world with a rare press statement.
Whatever the reasoning behind Ginny Potter's decision, and whatever the future holds for the Potters, we at the Daily Prophet would like to wish Ginny the best of luck with whatever she undertakes next.
Christina Chambers, Daily Prophet Sports Correspondent
"Looks like the brown stuff has hit the fan," Ginny said looking up from the back page of the newspaper and meeting Harry's eyes. She sighed as she placed the newspaper down onto the coffee table and Harry looked directly at her, brown and green eyes interlocking. "I guess I'll have to give a statement now; it's the least the fans deserve."
"I'll hold your hand while you do it if you want," Harry smiled at her as he took the seat beside her on the sofa, "besides, we couldn't keep it secret much longer, you'll be showing soon."
Ginny automatically glanced down at her stomach, it was still hard to believe that so much had changed and she had retired from the job she loved, the job she had wanted since she was six years old.
She could hardly believe her luck when the Holyhead Harpies had offered her a contract before she had even taken her NEWTs. Although she had made them wait until after the last exam had taken place before accepting the contract, she had been unable contain her emotions, especially when she had run out of the Great Hall at breakfast on the day she had received the letter to meet Harry in Hogsmeade, earning a week of detentions from McGonagall.
After everything that had happened in the previous year, she had been torn about completing her seventh year at Hogwarts. It had only been the hope of getting offered a reserve contract with one of the Quidditch teams in the British and Irish league that finally persuaded her to return. Playing for Hogwarts in front of the scouts that would visit matches would be the best chance of achieving that contract. She hadn't in her wildest dreams thought that she would be offered a place in the Harpies first team squad.
But now all that was firmly in the past as her whole world was about to change. Although, there was no real outward change with her body, unless you counted her morning, noon and evening sickness. Yet so much else had changed, and with this announcement so many other things were going to change.
She smiled, as Harry's arms found their way around her waist as he held onto her. At least she could be sure of one thing staying the same even if the rest of her life was right now up for grabs.
"I know," she said softly as she rested her head on his shoulder, letting their two bodies form as one, "but it's going to be hard; I don't think I realised how much I missed it til today."
Harry kissed her on the forehead, "I may not be international standard, but I'll always go flying with you." He took her hand and gave it a small squeeze, "But not for the next six months."
"A new year's match it is then, and I swear I'll hold you to that." She squeezed his hand back, looking deeply into his eyes again. The level of Harry's happiness was shining across his face and sparkling in those green eyes. "I really do love you."
"I should hope so," Harry was grinning, his tone was a mixture between excitement and mischief, "since you're having my child."
"Harry," she said playfully hitting him on the arm, "if I dare mention a slightly serious note, you know what else I'll miss."
"Keeping all this a secret." Her voice had dropped to a whisper, so that only Harry would have been able to hear, as if they were still keeping the secret from others that were in the room. "It's been nice to have something that only the two of us know about."
It almost seemed as if it hadn't been real with just the two of them knowing and with plans only starting to be made. The fact that they were going to have a child had felt so far away. All that had been on her mind was the discussions that had been had in the bedroom of plans for the future, the hopes and the jokes. Harry had spoken of his son being the new Gryffindor Seeker while she had argued that her daughter was going to be a Chaser and go on to play for the Harpies.
Now with the fact that all this had been announced and it would be only days before the whole of Britain knew, things were about to become a whole lot scarier. With trying to sign off from the Harpies in the right fashion, which had involved a lot of charity work, she had not had a chance to think about the reality of becoming a mother and what she would do now. Yet she knew for sure that as soon as this secret became known, the press interest would be intense and more than a few reporters, not to mention her mother, would be asking her repeatedly how she felt.
And that was the one thing she wasn't sure on. She was just as delighted as Harry that they were about to start a family. This was going to be so much more than bedroom talk. Besides spending weekends with Teddy and afternoons with her nieces and nephews, she didn't know how to be a mother and was not going to have the reassurance of handing a child back to his mother when he cried. Now she was going to be the mother that this little thing was handed back to.
It had been so much easier, before the worries and with just the two of them.
Harry smiled at her, "I guess we'll just have to come up with some more secrets then," she returned his smile, their secrets always provided highly enjoyable forms of entertainment. "That's if your mother doesn't kill me for not telling her about all this before it hit the press."
"That was my decision not to Apparate over to The Burrow, three months ago, Harry. Mum knows that and she'll be under no illusions there," her smile grew. "I'll be the one she skins alive."
He laughed, "You're carrying her grandchild; it'll be me that she goes after first, just like when I kept you out all night on your eighteenth. I swear, I was so scared, especially when it looked like she might be going for her wand, when we returned from Grimmauld Place. I felt like a naughty school boy, even though we'd done nothing wrong."
"In that case, I happen to like naughty school boys," she winked at him, "maybe we could find one of your old Hogwarts uniforms."
"Ginny," the tone of his voice showed he wanted to talk through this instead of engaging in the banter they enjoyed so often as they talked.
It always amused her how Harry could be scared by her family, especially after he had spent so many holidays as her parents' honorary son. Harry had often claimed though that things had changed when they had started dating, and that it was very scary to date a girl with six older, highly protective brothers. Laughing back her own argument that the only thing that Ron would be worried about was the disappearance of his free tickets to Quidditch matches, claiming that her brothers kept a closer eye on her than she thought.
Then there was the matter of Molly Weasley and a small fear that had grown since he had seen her battle with Bellatrix Lestrange in the Hogwarts Great Hall. Her mother was not a woman to be underestimated but she was just as sure that she could find her way round this. She had played the only daughter card so many times and she was positive that the possibility of more grandchildren, something her mother had been hinting at for years, would reduce any anger that might have grown from the Daily Prophet article, especially if they made the trip to The Burrow first.
She smiled at him, Harry still had that worried look in his deep emerald eyes. "Britain's best Auror can't possibly be scared of my mother."
"Your mother's a very scary woman."
"Fine, I'll hold your hand when we go over to my parents', just like you're doing when we brave the press." She glanced over at the window, "But we better get going before they decide to camp on the other side of the garden fence."
"Who? Your family or the press?" Harry asked in only a half joking tone.
"Both," she replied, slightly amused, picking up her wand, "Now let's go before I change my mind."
Harry reached for his own wand before whispering in her ear, "I love you too, Ginny."
She winked at him, "Well, that's good since I'm having your child."