Madam Puddifoot’s: Confessions of an H/Hr Shipper

by Slushie

After finishing book 6, and reading tons of editorials telling H/Hr shippers how delusional they are, I decided that I needed to finally put in a word for the H/Hr shippers. Lately, many people have been trying to get into the heads of H/Hr shippers, and figure out what made us tick the way we did, and the best way I know how to give you guys a glimpse is to tell you how I got thrown into the huge shipping world.

My Journey

It was shortly after the release of OotP (about six months) that I was looking around my favorite HP sites, when all of a sudden my mouse hit a link, one I had never seen before entitled…Fan fiction. I pulled up the first story my mouse clicked on and was instantly hooked. Now this may be surprising, but the first story I fell in love with was one that involved the children of Harry/Luna and Ron/Hermione. Unfortunately for me I was hastily swept away from the computer, and thus did not emotionally connect with the ships I was first introduced to.

Now you see I, like many HP fans, have always had a great connection with Hermione. More books than friends, and a great quest for knowledge. So, it was no surprise that when I read my first H/Hr piece of fan fiction, I was instantly enthralled. It was like reading a fairytale, with the princess being so much like me! And so, despite my better judgment, I fell head first into the shipping world.

But as soon as I fell in, I fell out, and gave up completely on fan fiction and most HP in general for almost a year, after finally realizing something. I was emotionally investing in something that most evidence pointed against. After some hard consideration I slowly began scanning editorials again, but fan fiction was out of my life completely.

You see, I saw all the signs pointing towards an R/Hr relationship — it’s kind of hard not to — but as I grew in my understanding of literature I started to see small evidence towards an H/Hr relationship as well. So it was, two months before HBP was released, I found myself discussing romantic possibilities in the CoS forums.

I loved H/Hr more than any other ship in the HP world, but even I saw that there was evidence for other ships as well. Maybe it was me not trying to be disappointed, or maybe I knew it wasn’t going to happen, but I started, again, detaching myself from the shipping world, and merely hoping that I would get my fairytale.

Then came the moment of truth. I picked up my new book as soon as Barnes and Noble opened on Saturday morning and read for eight hours straight. And now I am to the point of the editorial, an H/Hr shippers view on Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.

Storyline

I don’t think it is possible to say that J.K. Rowling lacked imagination in this book. It was thrilling, and gave us tons of answers to the questions we eagerly discussed. After reading the first two chapters I thought for sure this would be my favorite book. And to a degree it is, but I have to admit I was disappointed, not because my ship was sunk, but because I wasn’t as emotionally invested. The whole, “let’s put things off” discussion with Ginny at the end of the book, and the fact that Harry’s not planning to return to Hogwarts, just gave me that Spiderman/Lord of the Rings/Star Wars feel to it. It fit, but it’s been overdone recently in the Hollywood media.

Many H/Hr shippers hated this book. After reading some forums I realized how much people had gone overboard with someone else’s creation. Many were planning on taking the book back, never reading it again and some never planned on buying the seventh. Many people have called it, “The Fan fiction version of Half-Blood Prince” implying that it was too clichéd and predictable in their eyes. And in a sense I agree, there were clichéd moments, but that wasn’t what the whole book was about.

Characters

This was where I felt the most disappointment. You won’t hear me ever call canon Hermione/Ron/Harry/Giant Squid out of character, but I will admit that it seemed that some things didn’t seem to fit with who I thought they had grown up to be…

Harry: I didn’t feel that Harry drastically changed in this book. We didn’t get “inside his head” as much as other books, but it wasn’t that big of a change.

Ron: As many of my fellow shippers would agree, he didn’t change at all. He grew up, and we had some solid laughs with him. “Harry, I think I love her.”

Hermione: And this is where it gets dicey. Jealousy was never something I truly thought of as a Hermione trait. Sure, she had her moments in GoF, but it never was to the point of disaster. Attacking a crush with a bunch of birds doesn’t exactly say “Brightest Witch in School” to me.

Ginny: I have to say I have never gotten to know Ginny. Even while she and Harry were dating, you never saw them have much page time with a real live conversation except in the last chapter. To me, that was disappointing. I probably would have liked her relationship with Harry if I had gotten to know her a little better.

The Interview

Delusional. Emerson’s word of the day, and one of the biggest insults that could be given to any shipper. I don’t blame Emerson for what he said; if it was me instead of him I’d have probably done the same thing. But I think, had that not have been said, H/Hr shippers may have been more eager to just go lick their wounds. But to kick so many while they were already down did offend a great number of us. Because of that, many went over the edge in their hurt by being completely uncivilized.

Most of us invested in the H/Hr ship based it on what we would like to happen. We didn’t like the idea of R/H, H/L, or H/G so we placed our hero/heroine with who we thought they were best suited in our own eyes. Just because we saw the signs pointing against us didn’t mean we wanted it to happen. Just because we saw that Sirius went through the veil didn’t mean that we wanted him to really be dead. Many wanted him to (and believe he will) rise from the dead. Even though all the evidence points against it, many don’t want to accept that fact. To us H/Hr shippers, it was similar. We saw the evidence, and because we didn’t like the outcome we dug for different evidence to see if we could change the ending.

Delusional. Maybe. But no more delusional than any other theorist who has been brought down by an installment of our favorite series. I won’t condone anyone for saying what some have said about Emerson/Melissa/J.K. Rowling/Hermione or anything else related to the whole shipping debate. Our ship has been sunk and it’s a hard blow to take for some, especially after what has been said about us since then. The more dignified of us will go now and lick our wounds in peace, but I ask all of you who are reading to let us do so and not continuously bring up what is an obviously sore subject among us.

But please, if you plan on starting a petition to end JKR’s career, stop! It won’t give you the outcome or satisfaction you want. You’re just giving all the rest of us, who are moving on and doing so respectfully, a bad name. And we don’t appreciate it.

You can contact the author directly at MzSlushie at msn dot com.

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