Disclaimer: Geez, it's not mine - if only wishes came true. ::sigh::
8. Ginny VS. Slytherin
The dragon hide guards were being almost sentiently stubborn.
Ginny finally gave up on trying to tighten the tiny leather and brass
buckles with her shaking fingers, and had to use her teeth.
She was working at the last few around her right forearm as she walked out
of the Girl's side of the locker room, feeling pathetically nauseous and
"Here - let me help you with those,"
Ginny looked up at the familiar husky voice and swallowed at the equally
familiar sight of Harry in his scarlet Quidditch robes.
She bit her lip and held out her arm, fisting her hand in effort to keep it
still so he wouldn't notice how much it trembled.
Harry was just her friend, now, and there was no reason for her to feel so
out of sorts around him - but she still did. After all they'd been through
together the last few months, he still made her breath catch and her knees
tremble, but she had to get over it, for Draco. She didn't think he would
appreciate the ever present fondness she had for Harry.
She watched Harry's green eyes narrow slightly in concentration behind his
glasses as he quickly fastened the straps, and she found herself smiling.
Even if she never had been meant to end up with him, the memories of all
the special, quiet moments they'd had would stay with her for the rest of
her life - the good and the bad, it had all been a bit of an adventure, and
the young Ginny Weasley still sighing over Harry Potter somewhere inside
would always have those memories to wonder at.
"All set - are they too tight?" Harry looked up and gave her arm a tap.
"Er, no, just right, thanks." Ginny lowered her arm, but Harry kept hold of
it, and she looked up at him in query.
Her eyes flew wide as he suddenly pulled her into his arms, and hugged her
so tight he squeezed the breath right out of her.
"I love you, you know."
Ginny lay her forehead against his chest briefly and nodded.
"I hope everything works out for you, Ginny. I want you to be happy,
really. Just be careful out there - or is he worth trying to get yourself
"He's worth it," Ginny said, smiling breathlessly as he backed away, and
looked down at her through his messy black bangs.
"I was actually joking, but." he grinned and then gave her cheek a pinch.
"We'll win. I promise."
She saw him swallow hard, and then he reached up to straighten his glasses
nervously, and turned away.
"See you in about five minutes - I'd better go round up Dean and Seamus.
You know how long it takes them to get ready."
"If they're even out of bed, yet," grumbled Ginny good naturedly beneath
"I think Ron's waiting outside to talk to you, by the way," he called back
over his shoulder.
Harry didn't need to say much in the way of a pep talk - they all knew how
important the game was.
Noone but Harry knew how it was also important to Ginny - and for a
completely different reason.
Ginny swallowed, and caught Harry looking back at her over his shoulder.
She bit her lip and nodded - that was one thing about Harry. He knew what
she was feeling right now - that blend of nervousness and excitement, just
before a game.if anyone was more anxious than her, it was Harry.
Harry gave her a slight nod, and turned to face forward, throwing one leg
over his broom.
Ginny and the others followed suit, and they flew out above the field.
She made a lap around the pitch, passing Draco who had already taken his
place at the center of the field with Harry.
The cheers of the crowd rang in her ears as she took a deep cleansing
breath of the cool morning air, and wondered what he was thinking.
Draco hovered above the central circle, sneering at Potter, who'd taken his
place directly across from him.
He watched as Harry looked back with a determined narrowing of his eyes.
Draco smirked, and then was distracted by the appearance of Ginny, lining
up across from him, and below Potter, with the rest of the Chasers.
She glanced up at him as Madam Hooch shouted her usual before game rules
below, and had the cheek to wink and blow him a kiss.
He felt his lips curl as he stared back at her.
Her dark red curls blew around her delicate, fair face, and he stared,
fascinated by the cinnamon dusting of freckles across her across her
cheekbones. She was far too fragile to be playing Quidditch.
Just as he was feeling a fierce surge of protectiveness while
contemplating her, he nearly missed the release of the balls, and Hooch's
whistle, signaling the start of the game.
The shiny golden snitch teasingly circled his head and zoomed off before he
could even think about raising his hand to catch it.
Draco looked after it and then had to duck as Ginny came barreling over
him, the Quaffle tucked firmly against her side, followed by every other
chaser. He cursed after her, but she was too busy heading for the goals,
and avoiding re - acquaintance with the bludgers.
He saw Potter dive, and tried to cast thoughts of Ginny from his mind as he
followed, driving into a steep plunge.
Ginny scored past the Slytherin keeper, adrenaline rushing through her -
she paused for a deep breath before racing after the sinking Quaffle with
her teammates again, her need to win making her move fast - and not a
little bit recklessly.
A Slytherin chaser snatched the quaffle out of the air before they reached
it, and Ginny jumped her broom ahead, frustrated.
She saw the bludger that had been hit toward her almost too late - she
gasped, and rolled in the air, hearing the crowd gasp at the same time.
Ginny righted herself in time to see the Slytherin chaser score.
She moved off with a curse that would have gotten her a nasty pinch if
she'd been at home.
After retrieving the quaffle, she managed to score twice more before
getting a dirty look from one of the other Gryffindor chaser's for hogging
the ball - she passed the bright red ball over the unsuspecting head of a
Using the slight pause to catch a breath, she took a quick glance about and
saw Harry and Draco hovering overhead nearby, eyes narrowed as they
searched for any sign of the snitch.
She ended up staying still too long, and barely managed to move out of the
way of a growling bludger as it passed, jerking upwards on her broom
handle. The heavy object brushed harshly against her outer thigh with
enough force to leave what she knew would be a beauty of a bruise.
Ginny ducked as it's twin swung dangerously close to her head, and she shot
a look around to make sure Neville wasn't anywhere near.
Honestly, what had Harry been thinking, making Neville a reserve beater?
She dived abruptly, seeing the quaffle pass into Slytherin hands yet again.
The golden snitch shot by, followed closely by Harry, who was leaning low
and flat against his broomstick to gain speed.
Ginny followed his example, and was promptly awarded with a burst of speed.
She darted between two Slytherin Chasers and snatched the quaffle out of
the air as they passed it.
The roar of the crowd lifted her spirits, and she grinned as she made her
way toward the goals.
There was a great boo from the Slytherin stands as she went by. She
couldn't resist sticking out her tongue childishly.
Gryffindor scored again - and that was when things started to get dirty.
Two Gryffindor chasers went down - and they were out of the game.
Ginny only just managed to avoid being sent the same way - she received a
penalty shot from Madam Hooch.
The game seemed to go on for hours - more often than not she could look
around and see Draco and Harry hovering, looking about in vain for the
snitch, which seemed to have disappeared.
With Ginny as the only chaser, she had three Slytherins on her back
constantly - not to mention the beaters, who were determined to knock her
off her broom by hitting the bludgers directly at her.
Ginny sighed tiredly as the Slytherins scored again, and leaned low over
her broom once more, trying to ignore Draco's smug smirk as she whipped by.
It had to beat least thirty minutes later when she finally heard a massive
cheer, and turned her head to see that the Snitch was finally in Harry's
Ginny left the locker rooms, and was putting her Firebolt in the broom shed
when she saw Draco walk past the door.
A grin lit her face, and she swiftly stepped out after him, and tapped his
"So Malfoy - ready to keep your side of the bet?"
Draco stopped, snarled something unintelligible, and stalked off again.
"I guess that means yes."
Ginny watched the furious boy walk away, her eyes glowing appreciatively,
and then she heard Ron and Harry come up from behind her.
"- I really think we should ask for a rematch," Harry was saying.
"What are you talking about?" Ginny asked, bewildered. "We won!"
Harry straightened his glasses, and looked at her solemnly. "Well, we did -
but I was just telling Ron, I really think Malfoy let me catch it."
Ron was shaking his head vehemently. "No way, Harry! You've always been
better than him!"
"Why do you think that, Harry?" Ginny wanted to know.
"He hesitated. It was right there in front of him - I saw him look at it,"
Harry said incredulously. "It was inches from his hand!"
Ginny frowned, and then remembered how angry Draco had seemed. A wide grin
crossed her face. "I can't believe it!"
"Me either!" Ron muttered.
She poked Ron in the abdomen. "No, you ninny! We had a bet. Don't you see?
He did it on purpose, so I'd win the bet!"
"Er, Gin? What exactly were you betting on?" Harry asked warily. "You never
Ron was still recovering from the fact that his little sister had made a
bet with Malfoy.
"Well - he bet me that Slytherin would play Gryffindor for the cup, and
that Slytherin would win. And if they won, I promised him I'd never bug him
" 'You' bug 'him'?" Harry began angrily.
"I bet that if Gryffindor won, he'd have to be my 'faithful' boyfriend for
an entire month!"
Ron finally snorted in laughter. "Wow, you really got him there - hey! What
do you mean you think he did it on purpose? You think he actually wants to
let you drag him around by the short and curlies for an entire four weeks?"
Ginny jabbed him again, scowling. "Of course! Don't you see? He's in love
with me - he just won't admit it!"
Ron punched Harry in the arm. "See what you managed to escape by the skin
of your teeth?"
Ginny growled and turned away. She was exhausted.
"Hey, Ginny! Where are you going?"
"To take a shower and go to bed! I have a lot of 'dragging' to plan for!"
Behind her, Ron shook his head at a morose looking Harry.
"I think for the first time in my life, I actually feel sorry for Malfoy!"