"Once Upon a Dream"

By Ellie

A/N~ This is my first foray into the HP Universe…. I've been reading it for quite a while… but as I said, this is a first for me! =) I have a lot on my plate in regards to stories, so I'm going to try and keep this from becoming too long- I want to write a story not an epic. (Let's hope I succeed!)

I'd really appreciate your views on my ramblings- so please, PLEASE review! =)

Disclaimer: The wonderful world of Harry Potter is owned solely by J.K. Rowlings. And even if I WERE presumptuous enough to claim it as my own- none of you would believe me!

Chapter One

"Musings"

Ginny stared solemnly out of the common room window. The clouds were casting half of the bright full moon in shadow, but the dark shapes of people on broomsticks were still clearly visible against the darkening sky. She longed to be out there with them- in particular with him. Sighing, she relaxed her grip on the handful of velvet curtain she was holding, and slowly allowed it to slide back into place. Now if anyone were to peer into the still common room, all they would see would be a red-haired girl gazing wistfully at a large covered window.

Better gazing wistfully at the curtain than at HIM. The self-condemning thought led Ginny to remember all of the countless things that she had done to ensure that everyone, even Harry, would know exactly how she felt about him.

Blood gathered in her cheeks as she recalled one of her most embarrassing moments at Hogwarts. The singing valentine.

She had spent weeks agonizing over what to say… What was special enough to make him realize how wonderful he was, and what was too much? Most of her earlier works were filled with admiration or harped on how devoted she was to him. But then she decided that her feelings were probably too intense and decided to keep the poem a little more general…. A little more distanced from her own opinions. After all, she didn't want to scare him off!

Ginny let out a mirthless chuckle that reverberated throughout the common room, and then returning to drift off and continue dissecting memories.

The truth was- she had another reason for not wanting Harry to know about the depth of her emotion… It scared her to death.

The second that she had seen him, that first day, boarding the Hogwarts Express, she had known that he was the one- the boy that would change everything for her. He would show her that not all boys were as disgusting as her brothers. He would romance her; sweep her off of her feet…

To bad that Fate chose to do a LITERAL translation…

"Oomph!" The pain in her side flared uncomfortably before settling into a type of dull ache.

"Ginny! I'm so sorry… here, let me, um… get those for you!"

Ginny was still so disoriented from the impact of another person smacking into her, that it took her watering eyes several crucial seconds before she could realize that the black and scarlet blur in front of her was none other than the famous Harry Potter. The boy she had fallen for directly after looking into his mesmerizing green eyes. The boy with an uncertain past, and even more uncertain future.

"Harry!? Oh, uh, don't bother, It's fine!"

Straightening with all of Ginny's dropped papers piled haphazardly in his hands; he looked into her stricken and flushed face before speaking. "Well I was the reason that you dropped all of them, it'd be pretty rude if I didn't at least give you a hand."

All the blood in Ginny's body seemed intent on staying firmly planted in her cheeks but she tried to ignore it as she answered ruefully, "Thanks."

Ginny was looking directly into those green eyes now, and then she realized that he hadn't made any moves to leave. After several uncomfortable encounters during first and second year, she was finally able to look at him head on without anyone sniggering or making kissing noises. She was talking to him and he was still there!

"Well, well," a cold voice began, "If it isn't Potter and his little admirer, how touching really."

"Shove it, Malfoy!" was Harry's instantaneous reply.

The icy features of Draco Malfoy were illuminated as he stepped out of a classroom. "No need to get defensive Potter, I was just stating facts… Wasn't I Weasley?"

Humiliation swept through her and she valiantly tried to hide any noticeable reactions to his words. Remember that if you let him know that he's struck a nerve he'll be sure to do it again!

"That's what I thought." He said snidely before turning to leave.

"God Malfoy, do you always have to be such a prat?!?" Harry demanded, with his hands clenched tightly on Ginny's papers. He was either trying to refrain from grabbing his wand and hexing Malfoy, or physically hitting him. Perhaps both.

"Standing up for your little girlfriend Potter? Well then you shouldn't mind being a little closer to her then, should you?"

A set of hands shoved into her back and suddenly Ginny was being propelled towards a very surprised Harry. Flinching- she flung her arms outwards and closed her eyes, bracing herself for an inevitable impact with the cold stones of the hall.

When the impact didn't come, she realized why. Hands were supporting her; one under her arm and one wrapped around her waist. And her face was currently pressed up against warm cotton where she could hear a heartbeat. Good thing he has those Seeker reflexes or I'd probably be a lovely smear on the floor right now!

"Malfoy is such a stupid prat! Don't worry- he's gone… Probably off to tell everyone who'll listen what a big bad Slytherin he is…" Harry trailed off, and Ginny could feel his angry sigh against her cheek.

Ginny was thinking dreamily of how utterly nice it was to be held in his arms. Well his arms ARE around me -holding me up- even if it's not for romantic purposes.

The rumble of a throat clearing uncomfortably keyed Ginny in to their awkward position. "Er, Ginny…" The words were coming from above her head and his breath stirred errant strands of hair and caused Ginny to shiver. Which in effect, resulted in her rubbing her face across Harry's chest…

Mortified, Ginny did her best to spring apart from Harry, but he hadn't been anticipating the sudden movement and instead of getting away from him- she ended up dragging him down into her.

Once they had finally managed to disentangle themselves with a minimum number of apologies and blushes, the sound of footsteps started in their direction. Strangely elated at the rueful expression Harry shot at her, Ginny's mouth began to lift slightly in a secretive little grin. Their eyes told each other- "I won't tell if YOU won't" and then they were both smiling. This fragile bond was shattered when Ron's voice suddenly called from around the corner, "Oi! Harry! Where've you gone off to?!"

"I'm coming!" Harry called back. With a swift nod to Ginny, he walked quickly over to the end of the hall and met up with her brother.

Stooping slowly, she retrieved her fallen papers.

Smiling at the memory, Ginny curled up on a plump maroon and gold armchair. Well, THAT memory had some nice aspects…

"I'm so pathetic! I've had this insane crush on him for YEARS! He's not interested! Why can't I just let go?!?" The words streamed from her mouth before she could consider the consequences. Luckily, no one was around to overhear. The muscles in her back that had stiffened as she realized the dangerously embarrassing risks of shouting aloud slowly relaxed until she once again lounged in the chair.

It's deeper than a crush. You love him and you always have.

Ginny wanted to argue- she wanted to deny it- but the little voice that whispered to her was from her own subconscious and worse yet- it was telling the truth.

True, when she first saw him all she could see was 'Harry Potter- the Boy-Who-Lived'. But it didn't take long before everything about him started to have an impact on her- his quiet, controlled voice. The sadness that lurked behind his eyes whenever someone mentioned parents. Harry was so much more then 'The Boy-Who-Lived', he was a boy burdened with expectations that weighed down on him from every angle. She wanted to help him so much- she wanted to tell him that she understood… that she… knew him. In a way that even he wasn't entirely aware of.

So she waited for the chance to show him. She was always waiting.

AUTHOR'S NOTE~ I'm about to break something. For some reason- no matter what I do, or how hard I try to remember how to fix it- Fanfiction.net isn't uploading my story with the appropriate parts centered. It's driving me crazy and if any of you have any helpful hints I'll love you forever!

ON ANOTHER IMPORTANT NOTE~ I desperately need a Beta-reader! If you're interested in just working with this story then that would be awesome, but just in case someone out there would be interested in working with a little *MORE* I'll list what I've dabbled in so far: Labyrinth, Gilmore Girls, and now- Harry Potter.

It's a small list, I know, but maybe someone out there will read this and realize that they are FATED to be my Beta. (crossing fingers)

Hopefully there are some takers- I could certainly use the help! =) If you are interested then please send me an email mentioning the term "Beta-Reader" SOMEWHERE in the subject- I'd hate to accidentally erase my potential best friends! =(

And please, PLEASE, review….

I all ready have the second chapter ready to be posted… All I need is some encouragement… HINT, HINT! =)

Thanks Everyone!

~Ellie