Summary: When Ginny boarded the Hogwarts Express on the first of September, she was surprised to come face-to-face with the last person she expected to see back in school. He was still the same prat she remembered from years before, but now he has a much higher authority than ever before: he was this year's new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher. Ginny wished this was all a dream, but to her dismay she was stuck with him for an entire school year!

Disclaimer: Once again I don't want to go through all the mumbo-jumbo of having to write this out, so I'm saying this now: NOT MINE!!!

Setting: Ginny's in her 7th year; Draco graduated the year before

PhoenixRae's Notes: I'm fresh-off the success of Mission: Capture the Heart of the Resident Bad Boy and thanks to all the wonderful reviews I got for my first completed Draco/Ginny fic, I am inspired to write another fic about them. I hope you all enjoy this new fic I am starting the way you did the afore mentioned fanfic.

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I. What Are You Doing Here?

Ginny gave her parents, Molly and Arthur Weasley, one final hug before boarding the bright red steam engine train with the words Hogwarts Express painted on the front. This was her seventh and final year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry (and she was also the final Weasley offspring attending the prestigious school of magic). She was so excited, she couldn't wait to find an empty compartment and wait for Hermione Granger (who graduated at the top of all of her classes the year before and was now Hogwarts new Arithmancy {a/n: please, I am so confused with the spelling of this class so if any of you would be kind enough as to correct it & let me know the proper spelling I will greatly appreciate it! (",)}teacher) to come and join her.

She was flying to the moon when she found out one of her closest female friends was accepted as a replacement teacher for one of the subjects she wasn't doing well on. She had to admit, she was amazed at how she even passed her previous Arithmancy classes over the years without actually having a proper understanding of what it was about. Hermione did her best to tutor her, but once she was in class everything Hermione taught her came flying out the window. This year Ginny had this gut-feeling it will be different. Hermione would be her teacher and she liked Hermione's teaching style. She would be more in-tuned with her students, considering she was just a year older than all of them! It would be such a blast and she couldn't wait for it to begin.

Ginny found an empty compartment near the front of the train. She made herself comfortable and pulled out a book to read. It was a Muggle romance novel that Hermione got her hooked on over the summer, when she kept on complaining about being bored. Midway through her peaceful reading the compartment door slid open. She set the book facedown on the seat beside her and smiled up at Hermione.

Only it wasn't Hermione who stood at the doorway.

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Draco Malfoy stood at the last compartment on the first carriage, cursing under his breath at having such luck in finding a nearly empty compartment. He wouldn't have minded sharing a compartment with any student on board this train--but to share a compartment with a Weasley for the rest of the trip to Hogwarts? The Fates must be playing some nasty tricks on him!

And I thought my days of running into a Weasley were over when I graduated last year, he thought miserably to himself as he crossed the threshold and made himself comfortable on the seat opposite the youngest--and thankfully the last--Weasley offspring on board the Hogwarts Express.

"What are you doing here?" Ginny Weasley demanded heatedly as soon as he made himself comfortable opposite her.

"What do you think, Weasel?" he smirked, raising an eyebrow and looking right into her deep, dark, chocolate brown eyes.

Ginny raised an eyebrow at him too, crossing her arms firmly over her chest. "You already graduated last year." she pointed out to him, "What could you ever possibly be doing on board the train back to Hogwarts this year?" she questioned.

"Hmm...why else do you think a former Hogwarts student would be boarding the train back there?"

Why indeed? Ginny thought for a moment, ticking off possible reasons as to why Draco Malfoy was on the train back to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, but there wasn't really that much to tick off. He graduated from Hogwarts with top marks like Hermione, Harry, and--to her utter surprise--Ron, so there was no way he had to repeat a year. Unless...

Draco watched the youngest Weasley's face register what could possibly have brought him back to Hogwarts a year after graduating. His trademark sly grin plastered on his pale face, his gray eyes still focused on the petite redhead seated across from him.

Ginny raised a pair of shocked brown eyes and locked gazes with Draco's cool gray ones. She didn't have to ask him verbally, the answer was written all over his damn face!

"Please tell me you're not teaching at Hogwarts this year." she begged, but she already knew it was pointless to do so.

"What?!" Hermione Granger's voice exclaimed from the open doorway of the compartment, her brown eyes as wide as saucers as she looked back between her friend seated on one side of the compartment to her friend's unwanted companion. She stepped inside and closed the door after her. Addressing Draco she asked, "You're teaching at Hogwarts too?"

Draco looked startled to see bushy-haired Mudblood (although she wasn't bushy-haired anymore. She managed to tame her hair over the summer and now it was just an abundance of healthy looking curls) on the train.

"You're a teacher there too?" he asked in mocked disbelief, his gray eyes became as wide as hers. Hell! The Fates were indeed plotting against him! He thought his days of associating himself with the likes of lowlifes like the Weasleys and Muggle-borns like Granger was over, but right now he felt like he never really left that life of his behind when he graduated last year.

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to be continued...

PhoenixRae's Notes: well folks, here it is. what do you think of the first chapter so far? this is going to be a working progress for me. the ideas are already formed in my head, it's just a matter of how I'm going to translate those ideas into words that is the problem. as always, read, review & tell me if this is worth continuing or worth torching to cinders! :::winks::: and before I forget, I would like to thank my beta, Blu Misterie. you rock, girl! and I'll check out your fic soon now that you updated! hehehehe