|What the Nargles Saw
Author: JamieBell PM
We've seen kisses of many sorts: short, long, passionate, slobbery. Kissing becomes commonplace when one lives in mistletoe, but sometimes, something really special can happen that can make make a kiss a most amazing thing. One incident sticks out plainlyRated: Fiction K - English - Romance/Humor - Harry P. & Ginny W. - Words: 3,392 - Reviews: 50 - Favs: 40 - Follows: 2 - Published: 12-30-04 - Status: Complete - id: 2196930
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Disclaimer: I'm quite sure that nothing but the plot is mine.
What the Nargles Saw
Some people think we don't exist, but they would be wrong. We may not be visible, and we certainly aren't spectacular in any way, but we've seen a lot of interesting things and we've come up with many conclusions about the human race's habits. As you know, we supposedly "infest" mistletoe. Excuse us, but mistletoe just happens to be our home. Saying otherwise is just hypocritical: You humans live on this earth and there are millions of you. We might as well accuse you of infesting the air. Think about it.
As we were saying, we've seen a lot during the season of giving and love. Up high above everyone, things can become very clear. For some unknown reason, you humans started a very strange tradition of kissing under our habitat. Where kissing came from is also very unclear. Why press lips together? Why not elbows, or perhaps wrists? Despite your very unusual rituals, it has become clear to us that kisses are very significant in your society… or they should be. We've seen kisses of all kinds: Kisses just to fill tradition, pity kisses, passionate kisses, pecks, and some really bizarre slobbery encounters. We shudder to think about certain things that we have witnessed.
But we have noticed that the humans who look the happiest after kissing are the ones who have suffered more than anyone else under our mistletoe. Those who struggle within themselves to find the courage to grab their special others and show their affection in the time-honored manner. Those who would rather run away, but who stand firm and embrace the ones they admire. It always seems to mean more when these humans' initial emotions are fear and desperateness. One incident seems to stick more firmly in our mind than many of the others. Maybe because it was unique or maybe it was because these particular humans were especially pathetic. We're not sure.
It was a few nights before Christmas, and our mistletoe had been hung up for quite awhile. People had wasted no time in trying to beat the others in being the first to stand in our shadow. It's really quite strange what a ruckus a bunch of green leaves can cause. Perhaps it is the fumes they give off that make love-struck children and adults go crazy. It could possibly be us, and maybe we have some sort of magical power that we don't know of. We've never been really able to understand it. Year after year, the mistletoe is hung, and year after year we observe the same humans vying for a spot underneath us. There were two humans in particular who seemed very keen on avoiding our general area, and so we took great interest in why they did not want to come near our home. It was quite logical for us to be very curious about their seemingly inexplicable indifference to the mayhem that our mistletoe causes. Something intriguing had suddenly crossed our path and we were determined to examine it inside and out.
The two subjects of our observation were not notably extraordinary in any way. The female human had long red hair, and seemed to be very cheerful most of the time; however, she always seemed to get a little frown on her face whenever she happened to look up at us. When other humans would see us (not us, but our abode of course), they usually developed expressions of extreme glee on their faces. We were naturally perplexed. Why would she, who always appeared to be so happy, be so unhappy when she glanced up at our dwelling that caused most everyone else to be in such good spirits? We found her friend, the black-haired boy, equally captivating. One day of observing him brought forth these facts: (one) he often peeked at our mistletoe and the red-haired girl simultaneously; (two) he seemed to grimace in pain every time he did; (three) his cheeks would go red after he grimaced; (and finally, four) after he blushed, he could not look his friend in the face.
Why? we wondered. Why did they exhibit such signs of repugnance towards our household? Why did they not rush to stand underneath the mistletoe? Why did they go out of their way to avoid it? It was plain that they were very good comrades. It was incredibly confusing as to why they would not even exchange a kiss of friendship. What was there to be afraid of? It seemed that people typically took kisses to be very light and casual, so why was there so much hesitation? We could not comprehend any of this, yet it was apparent that the two of them were exceedingly miserable. And that was another reason we were baffled. Christmas was supposed to be a joyful time, a time of laughter and bliss, not the season for long faces and gloomy attitudes! Despite our very minute amount of knowledge of why they were acting this way, we, the Nargles, were determined to help these poor humans out. This was no way to behave at Christmas.
The first item on our list was to get the two of them quite close to each other. That was not going to be too difficult. We had noticed that they would come in together from a day of flying, with their brooms over their shoulders. Unfortunately, they would cut a wide path around our mistletoe, making sure they could not possibly be caught under it. This was the catch in our plan. We needed to get them both near the mistletoe without their realizing it. We required a distraction, followed by some blind anger from the red-haired girl, followed by a fall, followed by the black-haired boy helping her up, only to find that they were standing under the mistletoe. If we were correct, everything would go well from there. We had also observed that the other students showed signs of wanting to shove their two schoolmates underneath our residence, so we had no doubt that if the boy and girl displayed an urge to leave quickly, they would be stopped immediately.
Earlier in the week, we had noticed two much younger students take it upon themselves to drive the red-haired girl absolutely crazy. They put spiders in her hot cocoa and snow in her slippers; chucked spitballs in her hair and dumped ashes in the hood of her jacket, thus causing an avalanche of gray dust over her head when she flipped the hood up. Why they had chosen her as their target, we did not know. But it soon became clear that these two mischievous humans were our key to getting the red-haired girl angry. It was a risky thing, getting her all fired up, as her rage was always a sight to behold, but it was necessary for their well-being and happiness. Once in a while, there is a Nargle who has one extraordinary skill, whatever it might be, and it was our luck that we had one such Nargle among our numbers dwelling in our branch of mistletoe. This Nargle was extremely good at dropkicking things. He might have learned it from that black-skinned boy who was friends with the black-haired boy, and red-haired girl. We recruited our friend to dropkick mistletoe berries at the red-headed girl. We Nargles adore our mistletoe berries and it was a wrench, picking all of them just to toss away. We reminded ourselves that it was for the greater good, and wasn't it lucky for us that our mistletoe was magical and kept replacing the berries?
Our plan was executed on Christmas Eve. At exactly four-thirty, the boy and girl came through the hole in the wall together, laughing at some joke, their brooms held over their shoulders. Our Nargle, with a ready supply of mistletoe berries behind him, commenced dropkicking them in a steady procession at the girl's head. She looked up in shock and her gaze immediately landed on the two younger mischief-makers who were directly across from her and us. Her eyes glowed with fury, and her cheeks turned red from rage. Dropping her broom, she started slowly toward them, her fists clenched. Her friend looked amused, and slightly sympathetic towards the two younger children.
"I have had it with you two!" yelled the girl, unwinding her scarf and flinging it to the floor. "I thought maybe you'd get tired of bothering me, and why did you pick me in the first place? Didn't you realize what a stupid idea that was? I had decided I was going to be nice and let you off the hook, but not this time!" Despite the room being full of noisy people, it had gone completely silent.
The two little rascals looked respectably frightened, but managed to hide it somewhat, and just smiled at her, infuriating her even more.
"I was going to not do anything about it, since I'm older, and stronger, and I know more than you do… but not this time! I have no qualms with hexing the both of you into oblivion!" she shouted, stalking even closer. "I don't suppose you forgot who Draco Malfoy is?" The two scamps looked a bit cowed now.
"I'll have you know that that ferret," she said scathingly, "is terrified of me and what I can do to him. Would you like to go talk to him yourself and find out just what I can do?" She whipped out her wand threateningly and the entire room flinched.
"Ginny," said the boy warningly. Did we mention that we Nargles have very keen hearing? Be careful what you whisper when you are underneath us.
"Shut up, Harry," she retorted, not taking her eyes off the creatures in front of her. "I've had enough. They should know better than to mess with Fred and George Weasley's sister, especially when she taught them half the things they know." Now the two children looked very frightened and the girl, Ginny, was nearly beneath us. It was time. We dropped a sprig of mistletoe, coated in the thick sticky juice from the berries, right in front of her foot. As soon as her shoe made contact with it, her ankle gave way, and she flailed for a few seconds before landing on her stomach. The two imps scrambled to get away, but Ginny was having none of it. We watched as she pointed her wand at them and bellowed, "Petrificus Totalus!" The two children snapped to attention, and froze in that position, falling to the floor. The room erupted into cheering and laughter, and disapproving sniffs from a bushy-haired girl.
Meanwhile, just as anticipated, her black-haired friend rushed to her side to help her up. "Are you okay, Ginny?"
"Ow," she replied as she rubbed her elbow. "That hurt!" She got slowly to her feet and looked at the bottom of her shoe, while leaning on her friend for balance. She gingerly picked the piece of mistletoe of the sole, and looked at it curiously. The boy, Harry, peered closely at it and that strange grimace was back on his face. Ginny let out a little gasp of horror, and the two of them slowly looked up. They both turned red and made to bolt but someone spoke before they could.
"Oh no, I don't think so," beamed the bushy-haired girl, idly twiddling her wand in her hands. "You're under it, I suggest you do something." The two prisoners looked aghast as they glanced at the faces of everyone in the room. Faces that sported glee and amusement at their predicament.
"You're not going anywhere until you do, mate," sniggered the red-haired girl's brother who also had brilliant red hair. "I'm with Hermione on this one."
"Ron!" squeaked Ginny in outrage. "How dare you?!" Harry's face was filled with nothing but forlornness and anger at being betrayed by his friend. We could immediately see the wheels working in these two humans' minds, trying to figure out a way to escape. They immediately began whispering furiously to each other. We, being of highly sensitive hearing, could make out every single word said.
"We've got our wands," hissed the girl. "We could blast the entire room and then run…"
"And get detention for two months from McGonagall?" whispered the boy into her ear. "I'd rather not!"
"We could summon our brooms, fly up to your dormitory, and escape out the window!" murmured Ginny excitedly, nudging his side.
"Brilliant!" Harry congratulated her. "On three… One, two, thr—"
"Accio wands," said the bushy-haired girl lazily. Their wands flew from their hands and the red-haired boy caught them easily. "Did you really think we were going to let you get away with that?"
"Hermione! This is ridiculous!" ranted Ginny, looking like she wanted to just tackle the girl. Unfortunately, her feet stayed frozen to the floor. Likewise, the Harry boy could not move his feet either. And they happened to be standing two inches away from each other. "Give those back!"
"This isn't fair!" Harry said loudly. "Ron, would you give those wands back so we can move?" The entire room burst out laughing again. Ginny's cheeks turned red again, and Harry's face wasn't much better. We were very pleased with our plan. It's not often that Nargles make much of a difference.
"You'll be able to move as soon as you kiss her, Harry," said Ron. "You know you've wanted to. The same goes with you, Ginny."
Ginny's shoulders sagged, and the unhappy expression was back in her eyes. Harry seemed to be having some painful, internal struggle, and couldn't speak.
"It looks like we're stuck here, Harry," she whispered up at him miserably. Her eyes looked a little red. "Maybe you'd better just kiss me and get it over with." He snapped his gaze to her face, and suddenly seemed to realize something.
"K-Kiss you?" he said alarmed. Annoyance abruptly showed itself in Ginny's voice.
"Yes, kiss me," she said stiffly. "It can't be that bad."
"No, it's not that—" faltered Harry, his hands twisting inside the pockets of his robes.
"Well, if you think I'm that ugly," said Ginny quietly. "Just kiss me and get it over with."
"But—I don't want to," said Harry shakily. The girl's face looked as though it was about to crumple.
"Harry, just close your eyes and do it," pleaded Ginny. We wondered if this really had been the right thing to do. It seemed that we had done nothing short of ruining their friendship. Maybe Nargles really were useless. "Then we can just forget about it, okay?" All around them, the other students were whispering to each other, as they weren't able to hear what their friends were saying.
"No—You don't understand," said Harry shortly. "I don't want to—"
"We've established that, Harry," Ginny cut it bitterly. "It's the only way out of this." Harry reached out and took her shoulders, shaking her gently.
"Stop it and just listen to me, all right?" said Harry between gritted teeth. "If I kiss you, I don't want to "get it over with" or "forget it", okay? Ever." His face turned red, and he dropped his hands to his sides. We watched closely as Ginny's eyes widened in shock at his words.
"Are you joking?" she breathed.
"Do I look like I'm joking?" groaned Harry, running his hand through his hair. "Ginny, I've been sick to my stomach every time I've seen that mistletoe—and it's because I knew I was too much of a bloody coward to tell you. Do you understand now?"
Ginny nodded slowly. She seemed pensive, and Harry looked humiliated. We watched him writhe internally for a few seconds before the girl let out a whoop and lunged forward, closing the two inches between them. She flung her arms around his neck and pressed her lips exultantly against his. He looked shocked, but quickly wrapped his arms around her and returned her affection. A storm of cheers, jeers, and clapping filled the room. We were glad to see that we had, actually, done a useful thing. After all, when one is invisible and tiny and lives in mistletoe, it doesn't seem like there is much a Nargle can do.
"There," said Hermione, the bushy-haired girl, in a satisfied voice. "Now I'm sure you'll thank me and Ron." Ron smirked and handed back their wands.
"You've filled Ginny's lifelong dream, mate," he said, slapping his friend on the back. Ginny turned red and conjured a spider which crawled down the front of his sweater. Her brother shrieked in terror and fell onto the floor in a dead faint. The entire room erupted into hysterical laughter and Hermione dropped to her knees next to the red-haired boy.
"That was really mean, Ginny," she said, shaking her head and slapping Ron gently on his face. He moaned quietly and flinched.
"And what you did was kind?" Harry asked, incredulous.
"I made something that should've happened a long time ago happen!" the Hermione girl said defiantly. It figured that the human would take all of the credit. Just because we're invisible and tiny, and thought to be non-existent doesn't mean we don't deserve acknowledgement.
"I have a hard time believing you did it all yourself," said Ginny, tossing her hair. "Who put the mistletoe under my shoe? Tell me that!" The bushy-haired girl looked properly abashed.
"That was just lucky," said Hermione, who was still trying to wake up her friend. We did not appreciate that statement. We had heard of this girl who didn't believe in Nargles. Granted, nobody did, but still. This was no cause of luck, it was purely our doing.
"It was probably the Nargles.Won't Luna love to hear that!" laughed Harry, grabbing Ginny's hand. "Accio invisibility cloak!" He caught the shimmering cloak as it flew towards him.
"What are you doing?" the bushy-haired girl demanded.
"We're going down to the kitchens and have the house-elves make us a lot of food," said Ginny blithely. "They could use something to do." She and Harry ignored their friend's sounds of disapproval and outrage, and happily left the room. What was wrong with having house-elves make food? They liked that, didn't they? House-elves were raised to work, it was their life. This bushy-haired girl was very, very strange.
"Nargles—Hmmph! Ridiculous," said the Hermione girl. The Ron boy mumbled something indistinctive.
We took great umbrage with that statement. But we were very pleased with the results that day. It seemed that the kissing tradition meant something very special to some people and perhaps not so much with others, but it was obvious that the red-haired girl and black-haired boy were much happier than some of the other folks that took joy in snogging underneath our mistletoe. The Harry boy and Ginny girl had been quite pathetic, yes, but we Nargles all agreed that their situation was much more significant and sweet than other encounters we had witnessed. Perhaps the whole kissing deal is taken more lightly than it should be. Maybe humans will see that someday and realize how special it can be.
That is what we Nargles saw that day.