Story setup: Voldemort died the night he killed Harry's Parents. No Horcruxes, and Harry was raised by Sirius Black. Hermione was sorted into Ravenclaw, never became friends with Harry and Ron. Her Mother is dead, and her Father is not a dentist, but still Muggle. And glamorous Hermione. She will still have faults, just being frumpy won't be one of them. That's been done to death. This is the basic setup for most of my stories.
Curls and Kisses
"I wouldn't go that way if I were you."
A hand gently grabbed onto the crook of her elbow. Hermione looked up into the startling bright spring green eyes of Harry Potter.
Letting go of her arm, the boy across from her rubbed the back of his neck, a nervous smile on his face.
"Ron's cleared out the corridor, and is waiting for you."
Hermione looked at the corner she was just about to round, everything clicking into place at once. This hallway wasn't used too much as it lead to Ancient Runes, and as such had a pretty infamous infestation of Christmas Mistletoe that was known for striking every time it had a chance.
She looked up to the tall messy black haired boy in frustration "Seriously?"
His smile turned to a slight grimace. "Yeah…"
"He made fun of me for years!"
"Shhhh-shsh" Potter put his hands up in a placating gesture, looking around in concern and slight panic before grabbing her by the elbow again, and steering her back the way she came.
"Keep your voice down, yeah? Don't want him to hear."
"Don't shush me! He made my life hell, he was worse than Malfoy! And now all of a sudden he is interested and STALKING me! I'm not going to make it to Ancient Runes in time, and Babbling seals the door against tardee students with Ancient Chinese rune arcs. There is no getting past those, I don't know Mandarin Potter!"
Potter kept dragging her backwards, a look of surprise on his face. Hermione knew she was shrieking, and that when her voice got to this range it was terribly unattractive. But dammit all, she had every right!
"I'm hexing that great sodding oaf! See how he likes me after I shrink his testicles to the size of elderberries."
Pulling her elbow out of his grasp she spun around, digging into her robe pockets for her wand. Before she could take a step, two long incredibly hard, well formed arms encircled her from behind. The world shifted and before she knew it, she was being held bridal style in the Gryffindors arms.
"Dear lord are you loud for a bird."
Hermione's eyes turned to slits, "Excuse me?"
"Ah! Didn't mean it like that love, I was referring to your house, Ravenclaws. You're lot barely ever makes a peep unless it's to ask a question in class or something."
"Potter if you do not put me down thi…"
She was talking and nothing was coming out, her voice was gone. He had silenced her! The tosser had actually silenced her! She started thrashing in his arms, her hands pounding against his chest. His very broad chest. Damn stupid Gryffindors, the most athletic of the 4 houses, they had hit puberty in the most magnificent way. And as a 6th year, trying to prepare for her NEWTS, Hermione most assuredly did NOT appreciate the distraction.
Potter winced and ducked into the nearest empty classroom, almost dropping her in his hurry.
Once the door was closed behind them, and he was between her and it, he set her down.
Grabbing a wand and casting a 'finite' on herself, she then rounded on the Gryffindor boy.
"How did you do that Potter!?"
"That Silenco! You were carrying me and didn't utter a word."
Harry blushed and looked away from her, stuffing his hands in his pocket nervously.
"Same as you, you cast a Finite silently."
"Yes AFTER I grabbed my wand. Your hands were busy holding me up Potter, that was Silent AND Wandless."
She had been practising silent spells for years! Though she had gotten quite good at it, her wandless magic was a joke, the only spell she could perform with any regularity was a simple Summoning Charm. It infuriated her that this buffoon had some wandless magic mastered and hidden up his sleeve! Still not meeting her eyes, he simply shrugged. A stubborn set to his shoulders.
Hermione took a step back and looked him over. He was tall, not as tall as the Weasley boy, but at least 6 foot. A broad chest, and svelte frame, he had really grown up from the awkward scrawny child he had been first year when Hermione had met him for the first time.
They had been sorted into different houses, but even if they hadn't Hermione would have kept her distance. The boy was famous and had an unfortunate following of loud obnoxious groupies. For all that he seemed a decent sort, for a Gryffindor that is. Quidditch crazed like the rest of his house, brash and opinionated. Yet he was quieter about it all than the rest of them, certainly more so than his best friend.
He wasn't a bully like Ron, and often jumped in to defend those his friend set his sights on. He had friends in various houses, and took his studies fairly seriously, again a surprise, especially when compared to the lackadaisical attitude of the rest of his house when it came to studying.
He looked down at her, meeting her eyes just for a moment before turning away, toeing at the ground nervously.
With a sigh, Hermione made a show of brushing out her skirt with her hands, and adjusting her robes. A more circumspect approach would be needed, she would need to let this go for today. There would be no getting anything out of him like this.
"I thought Weasley was your best mate."
Potter looked up startled at the turn in subject.
"Wha- Uh, I mean. Yeah he is."
"Well I'm assuming he had pulled you into helping him in his asinine plot to corner me and molest me."
He threw a charming crooked grin her way, his shoulders straightening and overall posture relaxing.
"I believe he named it, Operation Seduce Ms. Know-it-All."
Hermione made a face before turning around in frustration, walking to the empty teacher's desk and perching on top of it delicately. Crossing her legs, and making sure her skirt didn't rise too much, she looked up to catch Potter eyeing up her black tight clad legs.
She had had a growth spurt of her own 5th year. Having been one of the smallest girls in their class first year, she went on to be one of the tallest, standing at 5'7, almost 5'8, and most of it being her legs. The other girls thought she spelled her skirts shorter, but really she didn't need to.
A lot of things had changed 5th and 6th year for her, besides her height. How boys had treated her, had changed significantly. Which lead to the problem she was currently in, here in her 6th year, with one red headed freckled git specifically. Following her around constantly, interrupting her studies and sniffing at her like a dog.
She raised her eyebrow as he finally lifted his eyes to meet hers. Coughing and looking away, the brightest shade of red yet, blooming on his cheeks at having been caught looking.
"He could have at least come up with a clever name for it. But no, I suppose that is hoping for too much from him. The twins would have been much more clever, hard to believe they are related." Hermione tsk'ed.
Potter chuckled and walked towards one of the high arched windows in the room.
"Ron isn't so bad honestly, he's smarter than you think. You should try playing him at chess sometime, he's a right genius when it comes to strategy."
Hermione snorted indelicately. "Forgive me if I find that hard to believe."
"Almost cornered you today didn't he?"
Hermione couldn't refute that. If Potter hadn't intervened she would have been in trouble.
"So what was it that had you step in and save me from the conniving Ginger Oaf that is your best friend?"
"He's my best mate and all, I love the idiot, but I have always hated the Magical Mistletoe. It's creepy, forcing 2 strangers to kiss. Not only that, but the fact that students take advantage of it!"
Potters voice got steely, that stubborn set to his shoulders was back.
"Ahh yes, I guess this time of year would be especially difficult for you. Must be tough staying one step ahead of your fan following, hmm?"
"Christmas and Valentines Day drive me absolutely mad. They follow me around and stare at me as if I hung the moon in the sky. I was a damn baby for crying out loud! I have no idea what happened that night, and my Parents died! Yet they all ask me the most invasive questions, as if I would know or remember anything, and thank me! They thank me! Can you believe that?"
He was looking out the window again, his back to her now. Hermione was startled to say the very least. That was quite a confession from a boy she had only ever shared brief conversations with throughout the years. She found herself appalled by it all. She should know better, she had seen first hand how truly stupid and emotionally stunted many of their peers could be. But to think they would be so stupid as to openly celebrate his parents dying in front of him and congratulate him about that day...
"That is fairly disgusting."
Potter turned around startled, his eyebrows disappeared up into his messy hair.
"You're too kind by half Potter. Honestly if I were you I would have made an example out of a few, hexed them good. The rest would catch on fairly quickly after that."
He laughed at that, walking over to stand in front of her.
"You really are nothing like the other Birds in your house. You have quite the mean streak."
Standing in front of her, his hands in his pockets, his eyes a dark forest green now, and focussed completely on her. It made her a bit nervous really. He had an intensity about him now, something not often seen in teenage boys. She'd seen it in some of the men that worked for her father. His 'assistants' is what her father called them. Mercenaries is what they really were. How curious.
"Speaking of, it was the birds you see." Harry said quietly.
Tilting her head to the side, Hermione held his gaze, confused. "What?"
"End of last year, right before we were boarding the train to go home. I saw you turn around and hex Ron with those birds. By the way that was bloody brilliant, I have never seen an Avis used like that before."
He chuckled softly, then looked away from her.
"But your face right before you cast it. When you had turned around suddenly at whatever it was that Ron said. You looked so scared for a moment there, before the anger kicked in."
A silence fell over them. Hermione lowered her eyes to her lap. Yes, she remembered that day quite vividly.
"Well after that, his flirting didn't seem so innocent anymore. It was obvious you seriously wanted nothing to do with him. So that's why I stepped in today."
Hermione ran a finger over the hem of her skirt, tracing the checkered pattern on it.
"He grabbed me."
Potter's head swung back around quickly to face her, but Hermione kept her own gaze downcast. She picked at the pleats in her skirt.
"I was getting ready to board the train, and a hand reached out and settled on my hip, right here."
She put her hand on her lower stomach, right where her left hip bone was.
"And his other hand snuck up my skirt and grabbed my… And then he asked for a kiss goodbye."
Potter took a step towards her, his hand raised hesitantly.
"Geeze! Granger I didn't know."
"Calm down Potter, as you saw I handled it. It just caught me a bit off guard is all, having a man grabbing at my ass like that. As sick and disgusting as his actions were I handled it. I'm not scarred for life or anything."
She cast a glance up to his forehead and his own scar, a wry smile on her lips.
"That was fucking wrong of him! He should know better then that! For fucks sake, I have no idea what's gotten into him this past year."
Potter started pacing in front of where she sat on the desk, his hands running through his already appallingly mussed up hair.
"Really Potter, it's no big deal, I handled it quite well. From what I've seen he still has some scars on his cheeks and knuckles from the birds."
"Ha!" He stopped in his tracks, looking over his shoulder at her. A look of delight on his boyishly handsome face, his eyes now a light grass green.
"Yeah, no one's been able to heal those! Honestly, Granger, you really are an amazing witch."
Hermione found herself blushing, much to her surprise. She was no stranger to praise, but usually it came from teachers and professors. Ravenclaws were a competitive lot, not all touchy feely like the Hufflepuffs, nor did they have the easy camaraderie of the Gryffindors. Her only real friend in her own house was Luna Lovegood the others kept their distance, jealous of her academic success. And students from other houses either called her a Know-It-All, or Teachers Pet.
"Thank you Potter."
"You can call me Harry you know. I would prefer it actually."
He turned to fully face her again, flashing her that easy crooked grin of his.
"Well then, since you were my hero today, you can call me Hermione. Thank you for intervening on my behalf. I really wouldn't want Weasly to have gotten my first kiss."
Oh bother! She had not meant to let that bit slip out. Potter looked as if Christmas, which was right around the corner, had literally come early.
"First kiss you say?"
Hermione rolled her eyes.
"Yeah yeah, get over it already."
Harry sauntered on over to her, standing right in front of her again. Leaning over so they were eye to eye, he wriggled his eyebrows at her ridiculously.
"So who are we saving that first kiss for Hermione, hmmm?"
Hermione couldn't help but laugh, he really was charmingly silly. His voice was deep and scratchy as well. Hearing her name roll off his lips sent a small shiver down her spine.
"Calm down Potter. I don't have anyone in mind."
Potters face fell, and he gave her that measuring look of his again.
"Really? I thought girls were all about their first kiss, don't you lot dream about that? And call me Harry, remember." He admonished her with a tap to her nose.
Snorting she waved his hand away.
"Ravenclaw over here, remember? We are a bit more practical than the girls you have in your Lion's Den. It's honestly not even really something that important to me. I know I won't be meeting the love of my life any time soon. I just refuse to have my first kiss be stolen from me by some git trapping me under that blasted rapey plant."
He continued to look at her, that strange intensity back in his eyes.
"So you plan on hiding out the rest of December, avoiding crowded hallways?"
Hermione sighed, running a hand through her curls.
"I suppose so."
"Then why wait and chance it?"
Hermione gave Potter a shrewd look. "What do you mean?"
"Why wait and chance getting stuck under that plant with someone less than ideal. Kiss someone already."
Hermione stared up at Potter in shock.
"Err." She was actually speechless. Not an easy feat. She understood what he was saying. And though she could be quite shrewd, she had never thought of it like that. Sure she had never really romanticized her first kiss, but she had also never thought of planning it out. She had always thought it was something that would happen naturally, unrushed.
Until she came to this school and they introduced that blasted Mistletoe her 4th year.
"Alright! I got to go! I'm late for Herbology."
Hermione looked up startled.
"I did my due diligence, saved the day, now I gotta go sneak back into Herb, I think I can manage. Today we were going to be collecting some weird sort of grass from the Black Lakes edge. I got Nev covering for me."
"YOU get to go to class, and I don't!?" Hermione was up, her hands in fists at her side.
"Now don't be like that love, I saved you from that 'great big sodding oaf" remember?" His voice took on a high girly lilt as he reenacted a part of her earlier tirade. With a smile and another tap to her nose.
"Besides, it's not like I actually WANT to be out by the damn Lake this time of year, chipping through the ice to stick my hands into freezing cold water, all to get some damned grass."
His face turned impossibly boyish and young while he pouted.
"Anyways, your always so busy, always studying, take this as a chance to relax yeah?"
She opened her mouth to reply but then his hand was mussing up the hair on the top of her head and he was half way out the door.
"See ya around Doll Face."
And with that he was gone, leaving her alone in the dusty disused classroom. With a frustrated sigh she made her way back over to the desk taking a seat on it again. Reaching her hands up she carded them through her hair to put it all back into place.
Her elbow, her nose, her head, and all out picking her up. It was the most she had been touched by a boy in ages. Ever really, other than her Father, and of course that didn't count. Her dad was her dad.
This is how Gryffindors were though, they were very touchy feely with each other, the whole lot of them, as bad as Hufflepuffs really. Always throwing an arm around each others shoulders, girls were constantly in the boys laps. The boys always wrestled with one another in the hallways, the girls held hands with their friends.
"Relax he says. Pshhha!" Hermione kicked out at the air with her feet.
Hermione did not relax, her brain did not stop. It never stopped, she just wasn't built that way. That's why she liked her heavy scholastic schedule. It kept her busy, kept her stimulated. Here in this room, without even a book to keep her occupied, it was a sort of hell for her. All because that stupid ginger haired bully. Not so stupid apparently though, Potter was right. He would have gotten her today if it wasn't for him stepping in. And that jerk would have gotten her first real kiss. Her first kiss…
Why was she waiting? She knew the love of her life wasn't among this group of morons she called her peers, there was no great romance waiting for her here. But there was a fair bit of potential for someone decent to share her first snog with.
Harry's face popped into her brain. Ahhh, now that was interesting. Before today she would have never considered him.
He was handsome, kind, smart. She really could do a lot worse, almost had if he hadn't intervened earlier. And as shallow as it was, how many women could boast that Harry Potter was their first kiss? Though rumors flew around the school about him, she had never heard any about him getting around too much, around the ladies that is.
Hmmm, there were rumors of the Weasley's sister having a crush on him. She was a year younger, in Luna's year, short, red hair to match her brothers. She had seen the hearts in the girls eyes when it came to the boy. That girl had it bad for The Boy Who Lived ever since she started school a year behind them.
There was another rumor she remembered hearing not too long ago, of him having asked out Cho Chang to a dance. Mmm, now that could be a problem. Cho was a year above her, and in Ravenclaw with her. Dark hair, petite, and exoticly pretty. Cho hated Hermione, hated how she dressed, her better grades, and the fact that Hermione was a more powerful Witch. None of that mattered though, she wasn't planning on dating Potter after all, she only wanted a kiss.
Silly Potter, leaving her alone in an empty classroom with nothing to do other than think and plan…
The Lions den was packed, more than half the house was present in the large red and gold adorned common room. It was Friday night and Gryffindor house was unwinding, letting loose. Ron Weasley, Dean Thomas, and Neville Longbottom were by the fireplace. Arguing good naturedly over a set up of 3D chess Dean was trying to introduce them to.
"The game pieces don't move?" Ron looked at the weird chess setup skeptically. His own Chess set was next to him. His queen hopped over and pushed the muggle version of herself down angrily.
"Oy! Stop that you silly thing." Dean swooped in to grab his poor glass Queen piece before it could get smashed by it's sentient magical counterpart.
"No they don't move, they are Muggle you dunderhead. But it can be quite fun, and the 3D board is very difficult. I thought you would like it."
Neville looked on as they argued, glad he wasn't being roped into playing. He could hardly play a normal game of chess, this board, with all its various tiers of different sizes looked barmy to him.
He looked up just in time to see Harry coming towards them. With a smile he went to wave him over. Harry had his eyes on Ron and only Ron, his face a mask of clam, but his eyes, his eyes were dark emerald green fires. Neville was not the bravest of Gryffindors, nor the smartest, but he knew his friends well. And there were few times in the years he had known Harry, that he had seen his eyes like that.
"Oy! There you are mate, come look at this screwy chess set Deans got."
Ron laughed and motioned Harry to come over.
"Hey! It's not screwy! You just can't get your great sodding head around how it works is all."
Dean pushed at Ron, knocking him over laughing.
Harry stood over the group, his expression blank.
"Ron I need to talk to you."
Ron looked up from the floor, finally giving Harry a serious once over.
"What's wrong Harry?"
Harry motioned with his hand, and turned back around walking towards the middle of the common room. "Come on."
Ron got up, and stumbled over to where his best friend stood.
"Come on mate, what's got you down?"
Harry turned and stood across from the red head, his best friend of years, his roomate.
"I have to talk to you about something important."
Slowly the room quieted down a bit, curious faces turning to watch. Ron looked around, noticing the attention they were garnering. A look of concern finally crossing his face.
"Hey, what's going on?"
Harry's gaze never left his.
"What would you say, if I told you someone had made a grab at your sister?"
"WHAT!" Ron bounced forward, and then looked around quickly.
"Ginny! Where is she?"
A small group of girls over by one of the couches dispersed leaving a red faced startled looking Ginny for all to see. Ron went to go towards her, but Harry grabbed him by the arm pulling him back.
"Ron, this is important, now listen. What would you do to the bloke that grabbed at your sister like a piece of meat?"
Ron's face was scarlet by this point, his breath coming out in big puffs, his chest heaving.
"I would womp on the piece of shit good, before cursing his bollocks off. Who was it Harry? Tell me!"
Harry nodded his head. "You would deck the SOB and curse him, yeah?"
"Yeah of course! Harry what the hell is going on?" Ron finally fought himself free of Harry's grasp, looking back and forth between Harry and his sister. "Who laid their hands on my sister?"
The common room watched as Harry calmy stepped towards his best friend and punched him in the stomach, causing Ron to double over. Gasps echoed out, and Dean jumped forward, too late though, Harry had pulled out his wand pointing it at the red head, sending a silent fuzzy purple spell at Ron.
Dean collided with Harry sending them both tumbling over, as Neville ran to Ron's side picking him up, only to jump back as the red head puked what looked like brightly colored slugs all over the rug.
"Bloody Hell!" Dean got up looking back and forth between his two good friends.
"What the hell is going on?!"
Harry got up, picking his wand up off the ground and putting it back in his pocket. The common room was dead silent, watching on.
"End of the year, before we were all heading home, Ron groped Hermione Granger."
"Wait, no one grabbed Ginny?" Neville looked back towards the girls. The short red haired girl shook her head furiously, her eyes wide.
Dean looked on at Ron, on the ground, puking another round of slugs up. His lips settling into a grim line. Neville had gone and come back, transfiguring Rons chess board into a bucket for him.
"What's this about grabbing Granger?" Dean toed at Ron slumped over on the floor, then turned back to Harry.
"Those birds she had set on him last year as we got on the train. That was because he had grabbed at her ass."
"Omg, the Ice Queen?" A high pitched laugh came from over by Ginny. Lavender Brown stood up and let out another peel of laughter. "Of course she gets hit on, and her first reaction is to attack a bloke."
Angelina Johnson stepped forward then, swingeing her braids over her shoulder.
"Don't you dare Brown! Grabbing a girl isn't flirting, it's assault. Remember when you had to deal with that ape in Hufflepuff getting handsy with you at the Spring Dance last year?"
Lavender huffed before turning away. "That's hardly the same thing Ang, Granger should be grateful for any attention that comes her way, everyone knows she doesn't get much action."
Angelina threw a rude hand gesture her way in return.
"Greens a bad color on you Lav, everyone knows you've been jealous since Ron started 'paaawing' at the girl." Angeline threw a glare Rons way on the word 'pawing'.
His cheeks turning bright red, Ron refused to meet Angelina's eyes.
"What the hell? This is all over Granger? I thought someone had hurt Ginny! You did this because of that swotty bird?"
Looking up to Harry from his bucket of slugs. Glaring at his friend before burping up some green and red slugs all over his shirt.
"Hey now, don't talk about Hermione like that!"
Both Ron and Harry looked over at Dean surprised. He rolled his shoulders as he looked around the room, uncomfortable with all the attention on him.
"She's helped me study quite a few times, I'm not from her house, and she asked for nothing from me in return. And she keeps everyone off that Lovegood girls back. She is a good sort"
Ron rolled his eyes. "She is frigid mate, doesn't even have friends among her own house, except for that Loony bint"
Ron clumsily stumbled his way to his feet, Harry stepped forward and grabbed him by the collar of his shirt.
"I don't care what you think of her, how is what you did different Ron? How is what you did to Granger different than if someone had grabbed your sister like that?"
Ron feebly pushed at his first.
"I'm sorry ok! When you put it like that I feel like a right tosser. I just wanted to frazzle the girl a bit. She always has her nose up in the air. Walking around like she is so important."
Harry shook Ron a few times for good measure before finally letting him go.
"You will apologize to her tomorrow right?"
Ron's eyes got big as tea saucers at that. "A-a-apologize?"
Harry nodded. "Yes apologize, and you will quit sniffing around her, and no more of your hair brained schemes to try and corner her under the mistletoe." A few giggles erupted around the common room at that.
Rons cheeks turned pink again, and he nodded slowly, looking down at his feet the whole time.
"Good!" Harry clapped him on the back and smiled.
"Then we are square mate." And with that Harry turned around to face those assembled. "If I hear of anyone in MY house acting like this in the future, there will be hell to pay. Be sure of it."
He leveled his gaze around the room, making sure to meet everyone's eye before turning around back to Ron.
"Right mate, I'll leave the rest up to your brothers then. "
Ron looked up startled, "WHA-?"
Fred and George stepped forward from the shadows of the dorm stairs, their wands in their hands.
"Can you believe we are related to this tosser Fred?"
"We dropped him on his head too much as a baby George. I reckon a few more times are needed to sort this disgusting behavior out…"
Ron looked back and forth between the twins, terror in his eyes.
Harry patted the twins on the back before making his way to his dorm all the while whistling a tune.
What do you think so far? Harry will be raised by Sirius in all my stories, so I do my best to make his personality reflect that, while still holding true to his general 'Harry-ness'. Hermione is going to still be a nerdy little know it all, but she will also be a bit condescending in her manner, and the way she thinks of fellow classmates. No one is perfect, everyone has faults after all! So get use to a slightly cold and calculating Hermione if you continue to read my stories.
This story is a standalone, will not be connected like some of my other stories. Again, please let me know what you think.