Chapter 44- a final return

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Fred felt like a complete statue. He just stood there staring at her letting it all sink in. Was it really her?

He didn't move one bit. He stood there for what seemed like minutes which in reality was only several seconds. His throat felt like it was closing into itself strangling him making it almost impossible for him to breathe.

She continued staring into his soul with her cold crystal blue eyes and a small smirk etched on her face.

"You aren't gonna say hi?", she smiled.

Fred reached his hand out to hold himself up against the wall still struggling to speak. All of this was taking way too long to process in his mind. She couldn't be alive, there's no way . . . unless Dumbledore was right.

For the past 2 months he was convinced she was dead along with everyone else at Hogwarts. They had a damn funeral for her for god sakes. And here she was smiling at him like nothing had happened or changed.

She lifted her back from the wall and slowly strolled over to him until she was only a couple inches away.

He stared down at her getting a good look at her face now. That nose. Those cheekbones. Those lips. Those eyebrows. Those small freckles and moles that were perfectly scattered around her face. And that hair that was once honey blonde.

It was actually her.

Standing in front of him, there she was. She looked exactly the same except for the hair that was now a beautiful shade of brown.

As he scanned her face and body with his eyes everything that was foggy and blurred in his brain from the drugs wore off. It was all clear now. She was back, she was alive and healthy and herself. That's all he wanted for the past 2 months and he finally has it.

Fred reached out and touched his fingertips to her bare arm making sure this was all real. He felt her hot skin against his and let all the weight that was pushing down on him lift and disappear.

He sighed deeply and pulled her into his chest tightly never wanting to let go. His breathing was ragged and broken and deep but he was so happy. He got her back and in that moment while he held her he told himself that he would never ever ever let her go. He needed her.

Ember pushed her hand against his chest and took a couple steps back. "Woahh calm down will ya?"

Fred felt empty and cold again as she pushed him away. "W-What do you mean c-calm down??"

Ember stared up at him blankly. "I didn't say you could touch me Fred"

His heart felt like she ripped it out of his chest and tore it in half then threw it in a blender.

"I-I didn't- wait what?", he spoke quietly.

She raised an eyebrow and looked down the hall trying not to make too much eye contact with him. "Don't think things are going to go back to normal"

Fred reached and grabbed her hands to hold in his. "I don't get it love. I-I have been thinking you were dead for months now and all of a sudden you appear out of nowhere fucking alive. And you tell me things aren't going to go back to normal??"

She stayed looking away.

"What's going on?", he whispered getting worried that she was staring down the hall expecting for someone to show up.

She gulped and crossed her arms over her chest. "I didn't mean to fake my death alright? I couldn't do anything, I couldn't-"

He furrowed his eyebrows while still shaking from this utter shock. "You couldn't what?"

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